Sunday, December 07, 2008

Why and why and why and why and why...

Whenever I open up the application with my photos, there's an option, "Last 12 Months" that pretty well guarantees that I'll get lost in reverie and discontinue whatever post I've started. Or, considering there were 3511 images taken over that period, I'll get to work sorting through them and attempting to organize those files. A monochronic person like me just can't disengage. The perfectionist in me also can't just write a brief post to get the thought out of the way, it has to be birthed, fully-formed and with images. Otherwise, it's stays, nestled in me like a clutch of eggs - photos, words, thoughts, with tiny sharp things scratching at and pecking through the shells - only inside, rather than out. it feels weird, man.

As I've always said, when I didn't blog, I'd burst. Today, I'm at a point where if I don't get a few things out, I'll just start shooting those eggs out willy-nilly with some loud "BAWK", and we all know that projectile-launched eggs aren't pretty. So, to clear some space so that the rest aren't quite so jammed in there, and can come out more gracefully:

******************

I went to visit two friends in Ottawa, Andrea and Dani. Andrea recapped my visit nicely (with appropriate links and accurate detail), and Dani, perhaps wisely, has stayed mum. The purpose of the visit, ostensibly, was to gather material for my freelance writing gig. The Cube Gallery had a show featuring art for children, but really, Josephine and I just needed a break and we missed our far-away friends. A change is as good as a rest, right?





The visits with each family were each deliciously different - and Josie and I enjoyed them much like a parent would love two very different children - equally, but for their different aspects.


The visit with Andrea's family was, well, girly-ish. A warm, elegant home full of fascinating artistic objects meant my eyes constantly wandered, and ill-manneredly rested on anything other than the people I conversed with. Josephine was fascinated by the myriad toys, and engaged in quiet, creative play for hours with Emma and Sarah there. And then, her dreams came through in a walk through the woods - she fed chickadees out of her hand (okay, I loved that bit too) and then we saw deer.





Her palpable excitement, and incredibly loud whispers "That's Bambi's DADDY!" almost sent the buck running - but we all watched, rapt, for an incredibly long time. Through it all, I was grateful for the time to talk about creative projects and growing girls. Andrea and Mark's calm, gentle parenting was inspiring, and the I look forward to the joy of girlhood with Josie with Emma and Sarah as fine examples of what beautifully-formed young women can be like. Emma and Sarah's grace with a bossy, active, boisterous little Josephine was something to behold.


After a meal that felt like a holiday dinner with both families and time spent together after at Dani's, Josie and I were left to the Donders experience. There, Josie and I reveled in the boyishness of it all. While not explicitly allowed, Josie was able to sneak in a couple of runs of her favourite sport - head-first stair body surfing. While bunking in the cosy couches in Dani's comfortable family room, we could hear Tristan, Simon and Josephine running around engaging in light-sabre fights with various bad guys (Quotes from Josie: "I never get to kill things with light sabres at home!" and upon waking up in the basement rec room: "I'd better sleep in a little more now before the boys turn this room back into a jungle gym."). Dani's home is all homey, relaxed as much as Andrea's, and just as fun, full of pictures of loved ones and graced by the most soulful old yaller dog I've ever seen; full of toys fascinating in their alien boy qualities to Josie, and it also came with the best accessory: a baby. Every kid, no matter how actively playing, would occasionally swoop in and give Lucas hugs and kisses and squeezes, and he rolled with the (figurative) punches. Dani and Mark calmly hover near their sweet and typically active boys with smiles and grace and delight and humour and I see a few fantastic, charming, fun boys in their future. Finally, others who match Josie's vast reserves of energy, and with comparable amounts of intelligence, charm and wit. And, as Josie says, "They're handsome."If I had pictures of these times, they would be nothing but striped blurs in a sunshiney room. The only other pictures would be NSFW.

After a bacon and pancakes breakfast (where Dani wins the Perfect Bacon prize) while Dani, her Beloved and I lingered over coffee and enjoyed Lucas' attempts to mash soggy cheerios and cantaloupe in his yawp, Josie and the boys were sent off to get dressed. We so enjoyed our conversation that we didn't notice the silence - and if you don't know, when there are three kids like ours, all aged in the single digits and with sparkly temperaments like theirs, silence means something's up. Giggles alerted us to a naked wiggling girl in the doorway, and more shrieks revealed two naked boys streaking through the house. Chants of "Naked Club! Naked Club! Naked Club!" as we attempted to wrangle them toward their clothes resounded. I had tell Dani something to the effect of "Well, at least they're all naked. I'd be more worried if it's only Josephine." And there lies the other favourite part of Josie's trip to Ottawa, and what we love about our daughter: That she can love reconnecting with far-away friends and feeding chickadees and seeing a deer as much as running naked with two boys she's never met.

My favourite part? Well, as Snoopy once said “I remember once when I had two cookies...A chocolate chip and a peanut butter...and I loved them both." And, much as Charles Schulz was referring to his wife and mistress in that strip, I mean that about the time spent with those two families. My life is better for having been there, and now when I read Andrea and Dani's posts, I can now envision not only where, but how the magic happens.

**************

It was good to come home too - the long drive to and fro with Josephine sleeping most of each way gave me time to think, and to plan, and the snow and wee bit of shopping there put me more in the holiday spirit. The weather here gave me the time to do one last back yard clean-up, and to fluff the porch with greens for the winter season. Due to recent events around here, we'd let it slide a bit, and rotting pumpkins and brownery don't say "Welcome Home" like we need it to. It still needs work, but Andrea aroused the creative urges in me again, and on a whim, a twig basket that formerly held sappy pinecones and squishy squash became a frame for a favourite outdoor ornament and the pinecones after I practiced her cleaning method. I've decided it's too twee, and will be revamping it - but at least I did something, whereas I'd been stagnating in the creative department lately.




*************

The pets.


Machiavelli, the "good" pet, continues to grow, and has had a few good sheds. Surprisingly, the somewhat exotic third in our roster of hand-me-down pests is low-maintenance and the most fun to sit around and snuggle with. Happily snaking (har!) around us as we go about activities, he's like an arm around a shoulder, or at least, a massage device that doesn't eat batteries.

Molly, as is typical with any hound (and as I researched before getting her and promptly forgot about), is in warmth and comfort-seeking mode. Here she is as I most often find her, having snuck into a cosy space that is not her own hair-covered shabby old chair:




While I admire her excellent camouflaging skills (I walked past her like this three times before I realized she was there), the other thing that I read and promptly forgot about before getting her was that hounds have a hound smell. A stink. They're supposed to be scent hounds - not scented hounds. And in the house, that means, bathtime.


While there is now a sure sign of gentrification in Leslieville, it being not just one but TWO places to bathe dogs professionally, we can't always plan ahead for that luxury. Mostly what happens is that I'll go to give her a hug, and recoil; or I'll pat her head, then smell my hand moments later , and the clinging stench is so offensive that I scoop her up and drop her in the tub after I shoo Josie out of her bath. This is now harder, as she is officially a fatty fatty boombaltti, and somehow gained 16 pounds, likely based on licking out the pots I've mashed potatoes in. So it's not really scooping her up - it's lugging her like she's ten pounds of shit in a five pound sack and dumping, rather than dropping her in. After, she's enjoyable for a couple of weeks before her dried-foody ears and fragrant folds emerge and repel again.


Boo Boo is still, well, Boo Boo. After about three seasons outside, he's bridging being an outdoor cat with being an indoor cat with the game called, "I want to come inside, I want to go outside". It looks like this:








...and so on.

This is only marginally more fun for him than the "I'll only come inside via the window but go outside via the door" game, and the "I want to come inside only around midnight and want to go outside starting at 4:30 am" game. Neither of these are fun for any of us, so we all play the "I'm picking you up and carrying you in even if you grab the doorway with your claws because I'm sick of this shit" game, and the "Jumping on the bed in the middle of the night game will get you catapulted off it" game.

*************

I've alluded to some stress? Some sadness in previous posts? Some busyness and a need to have a break? The sources are still there, and they take me away from time I thought I had to do things like paint the stairs and the bathroom, to craft more, to write more here, to find new outlets for selling vintage items and to even attempt to conquer my own apparently insurmountable pile of laundry. My floors have never been so dull, the pile of books waiting to be read teeters. But, the holidays are coming, and I'm now revving up a bit and I've still found time to begin glueing hundreds of vintage buttons to a wreath. Shopping has commenced. And through it all, there's Josephine with her new grasp of letters and numbers and songs and the beginnings of reading that means I'm always diverting attention to the latest creation. This afternoon, there's the laundry, a party and the desire to make bacon candy as the nibbly I'm bringing. And there are still over 2900 photographs that I could tell you about, if only I could lay those eggs. But here's a start.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Recommended Reading: Books Other Than These

An email to a few friends:

Why, yes, ladies - I do have a funny way of enjoying myself.

I really should get back to blogging.

M

And so, I realized - hey, this is kind of like a blog post that I already wrote! So I cut and pasted. Hooray! Except I put asterisks where I'd be advertising, so I'm not. I only fixed one typo, because it hurt my head so much.
On Wed, Nov 19, 2008 at 10:24 AM, wrote:


Hello and Happy November, Josephine!


There is a profound pressure placed on young girls in current day society based on their image: the need be thin, beautiful and appealing. Instead of looking to serve others, the focus is constantly on "me!" The struggle of peer pressure emerges and girls strive for whatever it takes to be well liked and popular. They fear walking the road less traveled because, to them, it appears to be the lonely road. Girls fear failure. Due to this fear, we oftentimes see far too many girls let life pass them by as they 'go with the flow.' One will find that as you look back upon your life, the moments that stand out are the ones when you have done things for others. Oftentimes, people forget to think beyond themselves. It is our desire for "M**** ****s" to empower girls to try new activities and as they gain knowledge and skills, learn to recognize the importance of using them for benefits that reach beyond themselves.


My sister and I just finished "M**** ****** ******," the first book of the M**** *****s series devoted to helping inspire and empower young girls (ages 5-9) to explore new hobbies and create new goals.

In the book, M***** has been invited to a birthday party and she wants to bring her favorite treat-- cupcakes! But M***** nervous about making them, for her last baking adventure sadly ended in a baking fiasco. What will she do? Join M***** and her mom on this sweet endeavor as, together, they learn how to bake the most delicious cupcake with just a few simple steps: finding a recipe, creating a shopping list, understanding measurements and measuring utensils, rules of kitchen safety, the finishing touches, and, at last, sharing the tasty treats with friends and family! Become engaged, as M***** gains confidence from working through mistakes, experiences joy while discovering her special strengths and abilities, and develops a love for learning- the sweetest treat of all!

At the end of the book are biographies of real life people that have used their passion for baking to open cupcake shops around the United States. The following cupcake shops are featured in the book: C*** *** **t (West Hollywood), S******s (Texas and Newport Beach), M******* ******y (New York), C****** *****ct (online blog) and F****** ********y in Long Beach :) The reason for these bios are to empower young girls to dream big!

I'm attaching the book cover and a recent book review of M**** ****** *****g (found in the November edition of the L**** ***** ********e).

I'm writing to find out if you would be interested in reading some of the story story? I would love to get your personal opinion for you are someone who longs to see young girls grow in their confidence and seek out passions. And if possible, is there a way of getting a review or mention of this book on your blog.


Thanks for your time, I look forward to hearing back!!!!

Thanks,
K**I





***********

Hello K**i,

I am not Josephine, and am dismayed that I was addressed as such, though that doesn't colour my response as much as you might think it would. I read all solicitations with an eye toward finding material for my other position as a freelance writer for an online site for mothers, where the advertisers and my editor there allow me to pitch and produce content for fair compensation.

My name is Marla Good, and I write the blog titled Hello Josephine. I understand your mistake, as when blogs are solicited for non-paid reviews the information in them isn't always carefully checked in the rush to contact as many as possible, hoping for publicity.

While I admire your endeavour, and generally like to support anyone's attempt to create, I'd like to stress that our daughter is not quite five, as is noted in the sidebar, so we are outside of your target market. Further reading in the archives would tell you've I've spoken out about giving up blog space too cheaply, as this advertising value has great power among women - you must know this, hence your approach.

Though we're reading ahead in age, and I often look for books that are topical that will broaden our perspective, I feel that your book and that your premise is exactly what I find odious in most childrens books these days. You see, at this point, Josephine doesn't feel any pressure to be anything other than her best self, and is naturally giving; more, she is comfortable with the status of her current friendships and peer relations. As we explore her changing boundaries and developing life experience together, we're discussing, among other things, why and how people choose friends and how to treat them and be treated in turn -- but that is my job to help her through it - not a book's. I think introducing such topics at such a young age does more to lay a foundation than to break a glass ceiling.

What's more, I don't believe books such as yours "empower" girls so much as reinforce these stereotypes. Everyone fears failure. Life doesn't so much pass girls by as it gets wrested from them by the circumstance of inequality, compounded by motherhood. Going with the flow is a human, protective instinct - not something to reject off-hand for the sake of some faux-feminism. Further, "doing things for others" is exactly the kind of gender-biased role in which young women often mire themselves in in an attempt to curry favour - not to prove themselves.

While the story might have value in covering perseverance and developing enthusiasm for learning - some of that comes with age, and the rest is innate and I'm hoping that quite honestly, Josephine will dream a bit bigger than the ideal of opening a cupcake shop (or any similar example) -- because few have succeeded to the extent of those mentioned; and before it became a trend, many struggled and failed. You see, we live in a neighbourhood where retail is hard, though burgeoning - and our cupcake shops are struggling. Good, healthy organic bread bakeries are thriving - but that's something altogether different. The real-life example is that cupcakes shops are luxuries and will be among the things that suffer in the new, hopefully more austere economy that we actually welcome. Cupcakes are a treat - we have cupcake themed birthday parties. But we recognize them as fripperie. Her current ideal of becoming an animal rescuer is far more needed in the world, and I'm glad that right now, she doesn't believe that she can't do it - and neither do I.

When I look back in life, what stands out are the things I did for myself that allow me to help others - not the many many times I helped without thought. If I didn't have a lifetime of learning how to position myself so as to have the ability to do certain great and specific tasks for those in my life who are in need, I couldn't feel good about how these instances played out. But the scenario you present is that people forget to think beyond themselves and should do so more - where I would argue that empathy and responsibility, because they're learned, cannot simply be forgotten, and should have less to do with being rewarded for exercising them - and ought to have more to do with how children must learn their place in the world in relation to all others - not mere friendships. And empathy eventually lets them see that everyone walks a lonely road, and I'm fine with teaching that to Josephine.

I appreciate the offer, as it was, but I think your book is not only not for us - I think it might be giving girls a message that works contrary to your assertions and would hope in future books that you give young girls more to strive for than success at baking cupcakes.

Sincerely,

Marla Good

As well, I've since found out that other bloggy friends received the same "offer". So I have company on my lonely road.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

This Post is Not About a Basset Hound







On a day after things have happened that one doesn't want to think about, it helps to have images of a running Basset Hound, so that at least one corner of your mouth can raise in half a smile.

Monday, November 03, 2008

Halloween Hangover

The poor dear, Halloween was too exciting for her.

The costumes alone were the cause of much wiggling and jumping around. It's not every day that you get to run around town in a pink tutu! All the attention, the admiring comments, and then the coquettish behaviour in return that was the cause for even more adoration...

It was the decorations on the porch, the candles inside the house in their spooky holders flickering, the flashlight that made eerie noises,and all the people coming to the door in those crazy get-ups too! As well, the sight of Steve striding around in his Prince Charming outfit, geared in a cape, breastplate, sword and crown (and let's mention, black long underwear as tights - because all princes wear tights, you know). Then, the trip later that night to our friends' home, with the savoury foods and more kids sparking and swirling like embers in the night air at the end of such a crackling Fall day...

But it was all of that candy the next day that's really to blame. The sweet, rustling, tempting candy that was right there, that's what did it. Even as I type this, I know I shouldn't have sneaked in the kitchen and pilfered that Coffee Crisp. After all, the ones I had for breakfast should have been enough, and I feel kind of grungy.

So, I understand how she feels.

Nobody wants to puke in a bed, one all dressed in freshly washed flannel sheets with a brand new memory foam mattress topper that was a birthday present that was finally installed last week under them. Nobody wants to spend a moment of a gorgeous fall day all listless and salivating because of a barfy tummy. Not even interested in going to the park? Well, that tells me she's sick!

We've all had those days where you just want to sleep all the bad feelings away, and wake up better. A comfy chair to return to, occasionally resting a cheek on a nice cool floor, any variation on lying down somewhere in a position that will never be comfortable enough, and all the restless shifting about between weak slumber, just quietly feeling yucky the whole while. She's not even well enough to complain - that's what gets the sympathy.

We've all been there. The retching, the tired hurty tummy, the lack of an appetite for anything, let alone healthy food - it's all to be expected when you're only fifty pounds and you binge on a few mini candy bars, some Pop Rocks, a box of nerds and a granola bar, a lollipop or two and a certain amount of potato chips the day after a really, really exciting night out.




But it wouldn't be so bad if she hadn't eaten the wrappers too.


Saturday, October 11, 2008

Live-Blogging Cleaning for Thanksgiving Dinner

I decided to have a more relaxing morning (read: l to the a to the z to the y) and a more stressful afternoon and evening, leaving cleaning for eighteen guests (a number raised from the expected six just two days ago) for later.

Now, here I am - we've hosed off the back yard and trimmed things a bit, hoping the weather will encourage people to stay outside as much as possible. The front hall has been cleaned, as I believe the "decompression zone" has a lot to do with the initial impressions of one's home. I've even put a fucking Begonia in a Frankoma pot next to a twee white pumpkin and a milkweed pod. They don't call me "Marla Stewart" for nothing.

As I've moved into the living room (the action plan is to clean from the front door out toward the back door - meaning entrance, living room, kitchen, mud room) (the upstairs to be cleaned during bath time, and the front porch cleaning and cooking take place tomorrow) - the random cleaning thoughts are coming fast and furious. As I've always said, "If I didn't blog, I'd burst." So, I'm depositing the thoughts here, much like I'm depositing household clutter elsewhere too.

5 pm - 5:19 pm:

Do other people check out my baseboards like I check out theirs?

I should just content myself with removing dog spit.

Go away cranky little black kitty man.

WTF have I been thinking with these curtains? Does burlap read funky or "cotton patch" to straight-laced relatives?

Front window - six years with no cleaning - why should I start now? Oh! Yes. Embarassment. So, do other people have to vacuum their windows before they're wiped clean?

Is that tree really dying like my neighbour says? Disturbing brown patches! Something to Google next week.

Wow - I like the impression of spaciousness less stuff gives! No- wait...that's wrong. It's ACTUAL spaciousness. Wow.


5:31-6:38

I did not just break the windowsill under my weight. Oh, yes, I did.

Lalalalala don't see rotten wood lalalalala.

Steve is my hero, having an arm span the exact width of the window from standing with one foot on the porch, one on the ledge.

Note to self: Don't crush the child's faith in herself. If she really believes that clutching Steve's ankle will save him from falling, so be it.

Go away, hungry little black kitty man.

OH Man - how and when did that happen little hornet? Gee, sorry!

The window has been so dirty for six years that we never knew it was scratched. So it goes.

Am mad at the person who built the window seat for the fortieth reason pertaining to that specific renovation prior to our moving in.

Dinner = frozen meatballs, broccoli, French Fries. And over with a minimum of mess.

"Bastards of Young" lyrics on Josie's chalkboard - maybe a little to pointed. No?

Halfway across living room now - at this rate, I'll be done by...two am.

I want less stuff, but I like all our stuff.

6:39-6:51

The dog hates the sound of the vacuum and the smell of cleaning products, and making that known makes me need to use them even more.

There is something to having less stuff - I mean, other people don't have to vacuum their cow skulls.

I didn't mean to pen the kid in the front hall, but it's working.

Ironic - cleaning the house to "Mr. Freedom". Kind of, I mean. It's not "Mrs. Freedom".

Heard from upstairs: "Time to build the stools" (Heh heh heh - stools!)

6:54 - 6-56

I need another beer. I have to make room in the bottom of the fridge for the turkey. That beer was tilted just a bit, so I can tell it didn't really fit. Yeah, that's right.

Heard a flush. The use of the word "stool" is too often used in the poopy sense in this household, and I hear the bathwater running. Might as well get to it while the pants are off, I guess.

On a somewhat related note: Remind self to yell upstairs to ask Steve to save the bathwater to give Molly a rinse after Josie's done. (It was her, not him, for the record.)

7:00-7:109

Removing the sofa slipcovers to wash is a nap-preventative, as well as a necessary part of cleaning the living room.

It's not the actual drool direct from the dog's mouth that's the big problem, I'm finding it's also that which comes as part of the head-shaking trajectory of slobber that covers our house like slime trails.

7:10-7:12

Found that a drinking game that called for a swig of beer any time I vacuumed up anything starting with the prefix "Polly" called for too many trips across the room to reach my beer while cleaning under the sofa.

7:18

Am moving the free weights to another room, their third location, where they still probably won't work by osmosis.

7:19-8-22

It's probably not the best time to upload some pictures to Facebook, but since I already know I'm going to have insomnia tonight, and a break is in order - why not?

OOPS! Forgot to inform the dog she wasn't getting a walk to the leash-free park tonight. The pleasure of our company throughout the day, and the general busyness disrupting her naps will have to suffice to make her tired enough to sleep through my insomnia.

You know, one reason we didn't put the hose away is that we knew Molly would have a great big poop on the deck right after we cleaned it, and that we'd need to give it another rinse off tomorrow.

#$%^&*(* squirrels have eaten yet ANOTHER decorative gourd from my fall display on the front porch.

Stools assembled, and you'll notice the timestamp doesn't include enough time for a trip to the hospital - meaning Josephine helped Steve to use the drill without incident.

Steve is listening to the Stray Cats while bathing Josie -- I guess it reminds him how proud he is of coining the nickname "Brittle Jim". I admit, I did laugh a bit, though I'm sorry it happened. None of us heals like we used to, you know.

Debating bathing dog tonight, or tomorrow, when she can dry outside. Or dropping the thirty bucks over at Soggie Dog...what to do, what to do...

I'm about to start the laundry -- do I need to wash more cleaning rags and kitchen towels first, or should I get the sofa covers done so I can take some "breaks" there later?

8:23-10:10

Did not bathe dog. Figure roasting turkey smell will cover furpig smell, if it comes down to that. Also, that's why I bought the "Tindra Mys".

Figured out the laundry order, and am exceedingly proud of myself. Because the sofa covers take a long time to dry, I can do a quick load of jeans - none of which go in the dryer. After hanging those, I can do a load of only kitchen stuff I need tomorrow, which will dry quickly, ending at the same time a normal load of whatever laundry will be finished. This will only take me until midnight!

Steve is playing is $75 (Goldmine value) Ricky Nelson album that he got at a Buffalo Estate sale last weekend downstairs in his Man Lair, and Josephine is having a dance party with him. She is hoping for crazy dances to Buffalo Tom's Treehouse next, I am hoping that a few more slow dances to "Lonesome Town" will put her to sleep. Also, I know Steve is silently bemoaning the drop in the Canadian dollar -- because that means that $1 he paid for the record means he really paid $1.15 for the record, meaning his mental "profits" are only $73.85, not a nice round $74. Not quite the score it was a week ago, then, is it.

The yams are now in the oven, and I will admit that I may have stabbed them a little harder than someone who was in a good mood about Thanksgiving Dinner would have. Am proud of myself that I remembered to bake them before giving the oven a good cleaning. Except that it will now take me until one to clean the oven.

I can feel my mother sleeping in front of the Buffalo News, dreaming of her breakfast at the diner on the way here tomorrow. She won't be eating there because she needs to from hunger, or because the trip is so long, or because it'll even be breakfast time when she passes the Casablanca -- it's entirely because she likes the breakfast there. And it's just eggs and toast and bacon and stuff, served by friendly but harried truck stop waitresses -- it's not like dancing unicorns serve gold-plated fairy eggs on magic toast there.

Other people with floor pillows and pets either vacuum more than we do, or they apply a coat of varnish to their pets. There's no way people are happy with pillows that look like mine do after a day or two on the floor.

There it goes: Treehouse. This household's offical crazy-dancing song. I must admit...I'm the one who got her started on this. She listened to this song when she was in my tummy . It's in my top-ten desert island songs.

Oh...now they're on Cuckoo Bird -- one of the others...time to go dance. We sang this to her as a baby, and now she sings it to us...

10:11-11:08

Missed dancing to Cuckoo - somehow one of my other favourites,"That's What Daddy Wants", got cut off - but Josephine fell asleep to Johnson City so all is good. Reminder to self: Be thankful for Wayne Hancock, specifically in this case and in general otherwise. Also, let mind drift back to the show at the Sportsman's Tavern, and the fun night there with Tom and Tara. Then think of how Tara had Annie Rose today. Get all teary about newborn babies, and be thankful for them.

Debate: Put clean sofa covers on tonight, so it's done? Or leave them until last minute tomorrow so they stay cleaner longer? Consider: The minute they go on, things like Basset Hound Butt Hairs and Free-Nut Buttery Fingerprints end up all over them. Also consider: Pie baking is being left until tomorrow, as is floor-mopping and front porch and walk tidying, and, well, everything aside from putting away some stuff in the kitchen later and folding that load of kitchen laundry.

Baking yam smell is making me hungry enough to start the pies tonight.

12:07

There is nothing like it - snatching sleep from the jaws of insomnia! I realized that I needed a moment's contemplation in order to choose my midnight snack, and the dilemma was: Can I bear to wait for toast, or will I have cereal. I was too tired to wait! Then I was too tired to chew!

The slipcovers must wait, the kitchen laundry can be folded tomorrow, the counters are tidy enough and the yams are baked. Because, and believe me, I'm typing with my fingers crossed...and I just yawned...I am going to go to sleep tonight, just like a real person who stayed up only a little late!

Of course, I may wake up at 4:30 like I did this morning...but wouldn't it be nice for Thanksgiving guests to find a well-rested person, even if her house has dusty bookshelves?

Friday, October 10, 2008

Courage, My Love


Courage, my leetle Butternut Squash of love. Ze Thanksgeeving deenair weel be ovair soon, and zen we ...oh! Mais non! I mean, zen I can unbutton my pants, and have ze nap on ze sofa. You, mon cherie, weel be, how shall we say eet? Delicious.

Thursday, October 09, 2008

Not Goofing Off

I'm just really busy lately.


Really.

Lots of stuff.



Work, the house, holidays, crafts, stuff.

Fall clean up. Playdates.




Just busy.

I have very little time for goofing off.



I mean it. We have lots to do.



Seriously...we're VERY busy around here.

Also - if you lead a craft for twenty-one kids in JK, you're going to come home with pink eye.

Especially if you're busy.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

And Ye Shall know Him By His Limping

Boo Boo: "What are you doing? What did you put there?"


Marla: "Never mind. Just keep walking, kitty man. Or, should I say, limping."


Boo Boo: "No...I want to understand what you are putting there, and why people keep looking at it and smiling when they walk by. Usually they smile at the Boo Boo, now they are smiling at the thing. That is not right."



Boo Boo: (muttering to himself)


Boo Boo: "Oh. So this is how it is? You deny my injury any sympathy?"

Marla: "Oh, yes. Yes I do. After dealing with my concerned citizens and my own guilt all morning yesterday, I took you to the vet, whereupon you promptly stopped limping."

Boo Boo: " I know. The pretty lady called me stoic."

Marla: "I KNOW. That is not the place for you to be stoic. That is the place for you to get necessary medical attention. I was paying for their knowledge, care and ability. $51 to be exact. And all you did was suck back Greenies and 'present'."

Boo Boo: "You were paying for your paranoia that having an outdoor cat is sometimes frowned upon. Assuaging your guilt. Sissy indoor cats get injured too, you know. Doing what, I don't know...maybe jumping off warm soft comfortable sofas?"

Marla: "I was trying to stop strangers from accusing me of neglecting a domestic animal! People were concerned for your well-being and stopped me to ask about you! I want the $51 bucks back! That's a year's worth of underwear for me! A pair of shoes! Fruits and vegetables for the whole family for two weeks! Half the cost of eavestrough cleaning! Haircuts for Josie and me! A letterpress class for Steve! That's the six breakaway collars, not counting ID tags and licenses that you've lost this year! Oh, the things that we could do with $51! Don't you love us?"

Boo Boo: "She stuck a thing in my bumhole!"

Marla: "She was checking your temperature in case you had an infection from a minute puncture wound!"

Boo Boo: "My BUMHOLE! A thing! Stuck up it!"

Marla: "She was being thorough. Admittedly, it was optional - but I went for it when you elected not to limp! I do love you Boo Boo - I wanted to be sure it wasn't something serious. And I wanted full service for that $51."

Boo Boo: "May those who love us, love us; and those who don't love us, may God turn their hearts; and if He doesn't turn their hearts, may he turn their ankles so we'll know them by their limping." (Irish blessing)

Marla: "So that's how it is Boo Boo?"

Boo Boo: "Well, I did stop limping for those ten minutes. Make of that what you will."


Marla: "The sign stays up Boo Boo, for the duration of the limping."

Boo Boo: "Oh! Look! I'm presenting again! Make of that what you will too."