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Sooooo, I was way off. Lucy Elizabeth came into the world yesterday at 5:41 pm (Eastern Time) with strawberry blonde hair and weighing in at 6 pounds. My prediction was that she would have dark hair and be 7 pounds 6 ounces (ha!), but Christy has proven yet again that she has the dominant genes in the marriage. Christy had the most beautiful red hair growing up, and it seemed to constantly change color from year to year. When she was born it was hardly there at all, then by the time she was 4 or 5 she was a true carrot top. In high school it turned a beautiful auburn red and has mostly been the same ever since. We also seem to have an abundance of girls in our family ever since my grandmother Louise had her seven boys. So far it’s three nieces to zero nephews. Also, if you look at my first cousins on the West side (and there are about 22) there are only three boys. My mom and dad had three girls before David came around, and he was treated like a prince because of it!
Tonight I head to Columbus, GA with my sister Rachel to see baby Lucy for the first time. We will spend the night in the hospital and just stare at her until our heart’s content. My mom is going to stay an extra night as well, so it will be like a little slumber party (minus the sleeping part…). Tomorrow is Rachel’s birthday as well, so there are many reasons to celebrate.
Since I like to call each of my direct relatives something really strange… like Rach the Roach (hahaha), Davo Potato, Anna Banana, Lilly Bean… there had to be a name for Lucy. That’s when James came up with Lucy Bug, which I think suits her perfectly. So let’s make this official: Here ye, here ye, from this day forth the little West baby born on July 2nd shall be known as The Bug! Or, buggy for short.
OMG – sooooo, I’ve been waiting all morning to post in case Christy had baby “L”, but looks like it will still be a few hours yet until my new niece comes into the world. My mom and dad are in Columbus with her and her husband, giving her plenty of back massages in the meantime. I get to meet baby L tomorrow night, and I plan to stay through the 4th so I can get some good lovin’ time in. I know she will be precious. My prediction: brown hair, blue eyes, 7 pound 6 ounces!
It was another great weekend in Atlanta. Friday night James surprised me with a “reverse date”, where you basically go on a date backwards. So we had drinks first, dessert second, and dinner last at three different spots in town. We were so full by dinner though that we didn’t quite make it to the appetizer round (and we kinda cheated by having a few snacks at the first place). It was a fun way to explore new restaurants in the city that I haven’t been to yet. I think my favorite out of all three was Sauced, as it had a 70′s retro feel to it.
I had terrible dreams last night… not sure if it was the storms passing through or just a funky trigger of some sort. I dreamed that there were multiple tornadoes all around Birmingham, and that the city was on fire. It was dark and gloomy, and there were lost injured animals everywhere. What the crap does that mean??? Maybe I ate something bad before sleep.
It’s July!!! Of course I checked out my monthly horoscope on Susan Miller’s website the second they were up. You should too if you have about 20 minutes to spare, b/c that is how long it will take you to read it…hahaha. She is my favorite and the only forecast I will take the time to read. This month is going to be nuts – Chattanooga this weekend with friends, Louisville next weekend to see Lee Ann, then Indianapolis the last weekend for the Indy Film Festival. We got more good news over the weekend for Crush, which we will announce as soon as we can! It’s going to be a fun July.
This weekend I went to Columbus, GA to spend time with my dear sister Christy and her family before she has baby #2 in exactly two weeks. She amazes me with her ability to keep up with a two-year-old while being 9 months pregnant….makes me think about how my mom did it with four children. I wonder if by the time Rachel and David came along, Christy and I were old enough to help a little? But still, four kids is a lot to take on. Then I begin to imagine having seven boys like my grandmother West did, whose 94th birthday is this week. That woman needs to be made a saint, and stat. Hearing about Birmingham when she was younger sounds like a whole different world. She talks about riding horses up and down Lakeshore Drive when it was a dirt road, and about how her first house with my grandfather was appraised for $75 in scrap lumber when they first bought it (which is the second oldest in Mt. Brook). She loves to say that the only time she went against her own father’s advice was to keep the house instead of tearing it down. Instead, they just added compartments on to it as their family grew. It still stands to this day, but probably not for much longer. It will be sad to see a part of our family history go away. Maybe a piece of it can be saved somehow by the next owners of the property.
I got the honor of being present when Anna Banana was born just a little over two years ago. I’d never witnessed a birth before, except for on the TLC channel. It was so surreal…. Christy was such a trooper, and the doctor was so calm. Anna came out very peaceful, eyes wide and taking it all in. It happened much quicker than I thought it would, and without any real drama. It was such a beautiful thing to be able to witness, an experience that I will never forget.
Speaking of beautiful moments, this weekend is the wedding of my dear friends Charles and Carrie Beth. I’ve known Charles for many, many years…we met back when I did my short film Piece of Cake in 2006, and he wrote a semi-review about it on his blog. We discovered that we had several mutual good friends, and the rest is history. Charles and Carrie Beth officially started seeing each other a few Artwalks back, and I think it is fair to say that they hit the ground running almost immediately. They have an amazing connection that is immediately apparent to anyone who lays eyes on them. Since then, I have spent many dinners with the two of them talking about life, hopes and dreams. A few months back they asked me to do a few readings at their ceremony, and I gladly accepted. If I can manage to hold back the tears, I know I will do a good job for them. Cheers to you both!
Yesterday evening while doing a short Sunday run, I ran up my last hill to the top of Cliff Road which overlooks the city. The sun was setting behind Birmingham, and there was a beautiful light surrounding the city. I stopped for a moment to absorb the beauty and take it all in. That’s when I began to imagine loved ones gone in the light itself, and felt a strange comfort. Birmingham looked so small in comparison to the sky surrounding it, this beautiful wash of bright colors constantly changing as the sun was setting. I thought about all of the people underneath the sky, and all of those who were now in it. I wonder what they know that we don’t….and if they can hear our thoughts and questions. It was an amazing sight to see and made me think about what might happen to our spirits when we leave this earth.
It is fair to say that a lot of meaningful life moments are coming up in the next few weeks, and I am completely and utterly grateful for each one of them. Thank you to whoever is looking out for me in the sky.
Yesterday was a good day for many reasons… mostly starting from the afternoon on. My sister Christy, her husband Mike and daughter Anna were in town, so we all got together at my mom & dad’s house for a dinner at 5. Christy and I have a specific chemistry that is very unique in my life. We disagree on almost all points when it comes to religion and politics, but with that comes a solid acceptance of each other. We haven’t always been that way, and we’ve certainly had our fair share of fights growing up. Since she is only a year and half younger than me, our lives have been intertwined in many respects creating a closeness that is hard to duplicate. There is something about a person that you can fight with, then make up easily with. I think it can make a relationship stronger. I don’t think there is another human on the planet that can make me laugh as much as she can, too. I was in tears at least 5 or 6 times yesterday, literally gasping for air. Come to think of it, everyone in my family has a great ability to let go when we are around each other. We may not always get along, because we definitely don’t, but it’s nights like yesterday that make me so appreciative to have every single one of them. I definitely think it is because we are so open and honest with each other about who we are. I try to be that vulnerable in other areas of life, sometimes with difficulty, so it’s good that I have that foundation to work from.
Last night was also pretty wonderful. Sometimes you cross paths with individuals who really mean something to you, and while I care deeply for a lot of people in my life, it’s very special when you can find another soul that you really connect with on a level that isn’t accessible to most. Those are very important life experiences, the kind that make it worth living.
I just finished cleaning the set with Rebecca and returning all of the chairs from our Crush shoot yesterday! It has been a long, but amazingly awesome, weekend. Of course I had my typical anxiety & worry about the shoot itself, but once it started it just felt like everything was going to work out great… and that’s exactly what happened. Rebecca and I got there around 6 a.m. and picked up where we had left off the night before to prepare for everyone’s arrival. The skeleton crew showed up around 7 a.m., then wardrobe & talent came at 9:30. Since we didn’t have a massive crew, we set-up until about 1 or so then immediately started filming. The pace at first was very relaxed until we realized around dinnertime that if we continued moving that slowly we would never finish. So everyone brought their A-game and we made it move pretty quickly after that. Sometimes you just need a little while to get your groove. I haven’t directed a film since 2006, so I was definitely rusty… but it came back like riding a bike after an hour or two. This was Rebecca’s first time as a director, and she did a fantastic job. It is really hard to co-direct a film, but we got through it with flying colors. I feel like it brought me back into the filmmaking world, while it gave her a running start. The footage we captured is better than we could have ever imagined due to the talents folks we had around us. I can’t wait to see what it looks like all put together!
Another really cool thing happened this weekend… my sister Christy completed her first Half Ironman in Augusta, Georgia! I am so proud that I could pop! She really battled with whether or not to do it, as she just got back from a long vacation that was hard for her to train on. But she finished, and I know she has to be floating in the clouds right now with happiness. Looks like we both accomplished big dreams this weekend!
My sister Christy completed her very first sprint triathlon this morning!! Words can’t describe how proud I am of her for taking it on and finishing with success. She did it with almost no training (minus the fact that she is a runner) and just dove straight in. Like my first tri, she even used a mountain bike on a very hilly course… which is so much more challenging than a regular road bike! It’s hard to describe unless you’ve tried it, but she was a trooper for going out there and keeping a smile on her face. Her least favorite part was the swim, which is also my hardest sport of the three. I can’t wait to talk more about it with her as you instantly share a deep bond with fellow triathletes. She said that it was the hardest race she’s ever done, but it also gave her the most gratification when finished. I couldn’t agree more!!! It is such a rewarding experience… and most importantly, fun.
I’m looking forward to a lazy Sunday – and for me that means brunch, nap, gym and a few movies at home later on. :) It’s been a good weekend, friends.