Friday, June 30, 2006

nothing but blue skies

It has been a gorgeous day, proving once again that even SouthEastern PA in late June/early July is one of the most beautiful summery places in my life. The smells, the sounds, everything on the street where I spent my first summers are familiar and sing to me fully of home. I've slipped back into my childhood like it should have been. Like I'm putting on an old sweater and a pair of jeans that are fit for nothing but rags.

This time, I get to share it with a giggly girl. This time, I'm the grownup. This time around everything is still bright and sunny. The pessimist in me asks how long before I cry; I'm telling her to shut up and go away. I don't want to think those thoughts right now. I want to feel young again. I want to turn my face up to the cloudless sky and get a sunburn. It's good for the soul.

Thursday, June 29, 2006


My cousin's family just delivered their first child. A girl-child. A Wonderful, Beautiful, Little Girl. Kathryn Marie. Welcome to the family!

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

back at the ranch

We have arrived in PA. The flood waters rise, and abate, and bridges are washed out. I see a lot of people not being idiots. They realize that the "Road Out" signs are there for a reason. Even though the flight was horribly delayed, I'm happy that it's over. The Child is finally asleep and may just let me get some real rest tonight. My head hurts.

Selective amnesia. That's what it is. The same process that keeps me from remembering in detail all the most horrid things of my life kicked in to protect me from the memory of the humidity here. The pollen. The enormous amount of creepy crawling things and blooming things that make my sinuses weld themselves shut in an effort to protect my lungs. At least, I have to assume that's what they're doing.

but we're doing good. We're doing real good right now. Bring it on, Kinfolk. I'm ready for you.

Monday, June 26, 2006

the toddler strikes back

Ever since we woke up this morning it's been GO GO GO for her. Into everything implies that there was a corner of the house that she hasn't already been. Climbing over stuff. Like Mama. Climbing up, pulling down, dunking my kotex in the toilet, and spinning the toilet paper roll are just a few of the things that she's been doing today.

I did finally manage to wrestle the laundry over. It's now clean, and shoved into the hamper where it will remain until after Tiffany's safely in bed and asleep for the night. I have to fold and put away and pack for our trip. Is it so wrong to want a few more hours in the day? We have just a few errands to do outside the house as well, but I don't know if I want to do them just yet.

Soon, now, I hope she'll be getting tired. Her snuffling is a bit better today. I'm trying to get her to drink lots of fluids and take cold medicine to dry it up, because the last thing she's going to want is to get an ear infection on the plane tomorrow. I'm looking forward to getting off the plane in PA. Where my Mama will make it better, and give me a hug, and take care of my baby so that I can sleep.

Sunday, June 25, 2006

Thought for the day

Nothing says "Mother Love" like chasing a snuffly toddler around the house to wipe long drips of yellow goo from her nose. This can be likened to the love it takes to not throw up at some of the more interesting deposits left in her diaper. The next time you talk to your mother, or your primary childcare provider, or biological parenting unit- thank them for this love. Because, honestly, you couldn't pay me enough to do this for anyone else.

Sunday Book Review

The Copper Crown was the initial work that introduced us to the Keltic world, as envisioned by Patricia Kennealy. I first picked it up not expecting much, but because I liked the cover. Five pages in, I was hooked. This led me to picking up the other books as they were published, and I’ve managed to keep all of the series through annual moves and a lot of disorder.

It’s a remarkable book that lets me see it like a movie. She’s managed to create the world all over again with a complexity that I don’t find in many other series. I don’t know how she manages to be left off the list of epic writers. I can be completely transported into her novels, and there are two books in the series that never fail to break me down into tears every time I read them. And I’ve read them so often the spines are creased and the covers heavily worn.

So pick up a copy. They're getting harder to find since the book has been out of print for a while, and she never got around to writing a lot of them... but there are 8 books available of this glorious series, and you'll get a whole new world to dream of.

Saturday, June 24, 2006

i wonder as i wander

Preparations for the child’s gestational birthday party are continuing. Tiki torches have been set up. A palm tree has been acquired. For reasons unbeknownst to me, the official party planner has decreed that it will be a luau-themed party. I think it has to do with the 12month hulu outfit and grass skirt that my mother bought last summer. All that remains is to show up with the child- that’s my ticket to the party. If I try to show up without her I think there will be a mob with torches and pitchforks coming after me.

My brain is going to turn into mush in a short while. My Boy is coming home in 6 weeks. That’s, like, SOON. Much sooner than it was when he left, on Valentine’s Day. Which is a crappy way to spend the day- I wanted to throw up at all the commercials. Which also may have been a result from the stomach virus that we all had that week. Fun. Not. But my brain. Mush. Yup. It is a well known Mary phenomenom, that when big Events loom I develop a sudden regression to four years old. A little girl excitedly jumping up and down and bouncing off the walls with my joy. This is not appropriate behavior for a wife and mother. Not if I’m trying to convince people how sane and ready for another baby I am.

I’ve been spending a lot of time online in the past two days. More than usual, which for me is still a lot. I want to laugh at the online survey questions, the ones that want to know in what group are the number of hours you spend online in a week. Um. 16+? At a minimum.

And what have we learned from this? Kids. They suck your brain. The brain that I used to have I had to share with her, which means that at least a third of my pre-mommy brain is gone forever. This is likely the reason why I don’t remember where I left my shoes or my hair clips. I wish I could blame my hatred of pantyhose on this as well, but I’m afraid that I never did like them much. Except for a pair I wore once, to my eighth grade graduation ceremony. Because my legs looked like a models. Abso-fucking-fabulous.

I wonder if I could get my legs to look like that ever again?
One Tired Toddler has morphed into Two Wheezy Cough Toddler. Lovely. She woke up coughing and as soon as we settled into the rocker with a bottle and some cold medicine, the tv blew a fuse.

While I know that this won't kill me, I'll admit that it felt that way as I envisioned a whole five days without living room tv. Then I remembered the set in the nursery. So I dragged that out, hooked it up, and now we've got a smallish tv nesting on top of the dead one. The warm glow of kids PBS is soothing to my spirit, and the prospect of the ability to share my day with my electric nanny is comforting. Although what that says about me, that I need the nanny for myself- I'm not sure. Tiff can take or leave it, she really doesn't notice the tv much. Her mother's the raving drooling lunatic wandering around craving her media fix.

Friday, June 23, 2006

baby fever

The biological urge to reproduce has got to be one of the screwiest things about being alive. Why in the name of all that's holy do I want to do this again? Do I not remember the complications? The preeclampsia? The sudden "Hey, You're having a baby NOW" proclamation of the doctors? The tunnel vision that came over me with the three little words that will forever haunt my memories of April 29, 2005: Are You Shaved?

Who would have guessed that a grooming habit that I do for personal convenience, because I hate itching and sweating Down There every spring and summer, would turn into a potentially lifesaving procedure? The docs had an extra five minutes to work their magic, which was five extra minutes that they didn't have to run. And come to think of it- this is scary- just occurred to me as I sit here writing this- if there had not been a clear and very real danger of somebody's permanent harm/death, they would have been a tad more relaxed about it and not been running like they did.

I might be trying to process this childbirth for the rest of my life. It's like the hole left by a tooth, it's something I have this urge to pick at and I can't keep my thoughts out of it.

On most episodes of ER you see patients in crisis and the docs running around working their magic. Calm, unhurried, competence that gets rid of wasted emotion and movement. They focus on the crisis and not the hundred other things that must run through their heads. In the Zone.

Sometimes I think back and I can still see the naked relief on my surgeon's face, two days later, as she sat on the edge of my bed in her civies with her hair still wet from the morning's shower, telling me that she doesn't know why I walked into the clinic that morning but that she's glad that I did. She smiles, and I smile, and for the first time in weeks my mind is clear. The shock is starting to set in. It's only barely real to me that morning.

And now I am anxious to do this again? This has got to be part of the baby amnesia that mothers have. We forget the worst parts of delivery. We don't remember the fear, we forget the pain and terror. Even if there's no pain. We only remember the glorious moment after, when we see a child born. We become willing to do it again for the reward of sweet kissable baby head nestled under our chin.

sticker madness

I had to go down to the base and get my department of defense stickers for the new car. I've been putting this off now for a month. At least. No real reason, I just didn't feel like it and never went. Everyone always says that the lines are so long, that you wait forever, that you'll grow old waiting for your turn through the line. So I was in and out in five minutes, tops.

My secret, you see, is to show up an hour after they open, in the week, when everybody else is supposed to be at work. It's too early for most retirees and stay at home spouses, and too late for all the poor buggers who have to punch the timeclock. There was one other car who showed up while I was there. And five strapping young men with guns who did the processing. I used to get so nervous driving down to base to do anything, because of all those strapping young men with guns. I thought they'd yell at me or something.

I guess you really can get used to anything. Now I don't even register the guns when I'm looking at them. Unless they're being pointed at someone.

Thursday, June 22, 2006

sleepless in san diego

Insomnia sucks. It's that old sleeplessness right now. Even though my body is crying out for the sweet unconsciousness of sleep, I can't relax enough to get there. So I'm sitting here in the middle of the night wondering if I dare take a sleeping pill to help ease the transition. Will it help? Yes. Do I want to feel like I'm relying on chemicals to get the rest? No.

I don't know how I do this sometimes. I don't remember how I used to be able to do this night after night and still function. Sleep has become unbearingly precious to me since Tiff was born. I'm ready to embrace my slothful self. Sleep! Shuteye! Wonderful things! The Precious!

We are tricksy, oh yes we are. Tricksy Mama. This is how I find Tiff's tickle spot and mock-growl into her belly until she shrieks with laughter. It is one of the most rewarding moments of my entire life, and I can't imagine never knowing it.

goldfish delight

Nothing says Happy Toddler more than a kid mushing goldfish crackers into yellow mush, spitting them out on mommy's thighs, rubbing them around to feel the texture against my chunky legs, then putting them back in her mouth and eating them.

I swear, she's not a puppy. Really.

on the subject of boohbah

"And those are giant, uncircumcised penises. They come in many colors. So many colors!"


"Wow. And they're so active! Jumping and dancing all over the place."


"Yup. Uncircumcised penises. That's what Dooce calls them, and Mommy thinks it is very appropriate. But maybe we shouldn't tell Daddy."

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

note to self

I'm nuts. Certifiable. Completely whacked. And even though this is One Tired Toddler, she does not want to go to sleep. Or should I say, Especially Because she's so tired. So why does this connect to my first statement?

I want another one.

My God, I'm insane. To want to face the toddler years in unison with a newborn. To want to face the challenges that will likely come with another preemie. The reflux, the doctors, the endless nights of colic and reflux in joint motion... I should just soak all my shirts in sour milk right now so that I can get used to the smell.

The goldfish cracker budget is hurting this week. I'm looking at buying tickets for my mother, my motherinlaw, it seems sometimes as though I'm financing the entire world. Out of love. I wish I didn't have to, I wish everybody was rich and could be giving me money instead of my trying to squeeze pennies. In token of this, if you've enjoyed even one thing on this site, leave a tip at the door.

Smartass-y comments are always welcome.
I’m a bookaholic, and I’m not sorry!

I nearly wet myself when the current catalog of the book club I belong to (can that be any more drawn out? But they’re not paying me to sponsor them) arrived in last night’s mail. I don’t usually have this sort of relationship with their mailings, but this one is special. This one is a flat rate of 1.99 for shipping for the month’s order.


I blew my personal book budget for the year on this. Dropped it in the mail this morning before I could think wiser of it, and I’m considering pitching a tent out next to the mailboxes so that when the Package arrives I’ll be first in line.

Let’s keep this between the Net and me. Let’s not tell anyone. Shhhh…..

my feet could go to sleep

I am wearing the most comfortable pair of shoes I own. I keep forgetting they exist, perhaps cause I never believe that I can wear them all day without falling out of them. Normally this is a problem I only have with my bras. Which I learned recently to fix by the simple matter of duct tape.

Yes, world, I duct tape my boobs into my bra about half the time. It’s an even chance every time you see me that my chest will crinkle when touched because of the taped goodness. I call it self-defense. Because I spent my yearly bra budget already this year on pretty, comfortable bras, and it’s not my fault that I fall out of them if I bend over past a certain angle.

But I saw these shoes poking out of my closet this morning and because it’s a hot day and because I intend to be kicking my shoes on and off all freaking day with the errands and such… I pulled them out and slid them on. Yes, they’re slides. Yes, they look really good on my feet and would look even better if I painted my toenails in that lovely watermelon color with the sparkles. And yes, I expect that I’ll be cursing them to hell at least twice before lunchtime.

But man, oh man… they feel good. Like big old hugs on my feet. So I’m going to suck it up today.

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

and here we go again

Tiffany had a busy day of standing and sitting. Recently she’s discovered that she can stand up by the window in the dining room, and put her hands up on the sill for balance, and see Outside. This has caused great excitement. Excitement that can only be shown and properly displayed by wiggling her butt back and forth at great speed. If she had a tail, it would be wagging so fast that she would have wind burn.

I wonder how I ended up with a child who is determined to act like every small mammal on the planet. Maybe this isn’t that unusual. I’m betting that it’s not, that all other toddlers this age do the same thing. Something I missed out on, not being around little kids much my whole life. It’s a miracle that I wanted her so much, and am so happy at the thoughts of giving her siblings, especially if they all act like this. I’m going to raise a zoo. When I quote from Mary Poppins, “Is this a nursery or a bear pit?” I really hope that they don’t tell me it’s a bear pit. Knowing my offspring, it would be a challenge. Perhaps I should just make a pact right now to keep my mouth SHUT.

That’s not going to happen. Can you hear the Boy laughing at the very thought of this? “Silly Mary,” he’d say, kissing my forehead. “I love you.” There are days, he says, when all he can do is pat me on the head and tell me that I’m silly. If he didn’t, he’d either divorce me or kill me. And he wouldn’t want the paperwork that goes with either of those options.

We all have our little quirks. Those little insanities that make our loved ones love us, that make us unique. I wouldn’t trade my Boy or my Small Mammal for anything in the world. I just don’t want to ever wake up from this dream.

mama's light

blue eyes watching me
mama, make the sun shine
mama, up UP!
blue eyes and rosebud lips
she’s more perfect than a fairy tale
an angel come to life in my arms
catch my gaze, laughing
light of my world

Monday, June 19, 2006

if you're crazy and you know it raise your hands

not to put too fine a point upon it, but I’m nuts. Here I sit, after a nice afternoon following a nice quiet morning. Tiffany is sound asleep. I seriously consider waking her up just to play with her cute little chubby feet, and kiss her dimpled knees. Patience! She’s gonna be awake in a few minutes anyway. Let’s not rush things.

the rest of the day is scheduled for nothing more than playing with the light of my life. We’re going to work on her sitting, her upper body strength, using those gross motor skills and fine motor skills… I’m even going to bravely put her in the highchair for her dinner tonight. Like I’ve said before, I’m having serious trouble letting go right now. Part of it, yes, is due to the incredible mess she makes when attempting to self-feed. And I know that she’s going to make a mess, and I know that she needs to do this, and I know that I need to let her do what she needs to do. That being said, the lack of her upper body skills/strength has made our attempts at this to date very frustrating on both ends. I could say that it’s a battle of wills between us. Baby do! Mommy do! Baby do! Mommy do! There are times that I can hear my mother scolding me to share and play nicely with others.

This is going to be fun. I have managed to cut our daily schedule down to practically nothing medical. That alone is worth so much. With the normalish mommy-daughter time, I am bonding more and more with this cute little bundle of joy. I can’t wait to see the joy on her face when I show her a little brother or sister.

Sunday, June 18, 2006

cleanliness is next to the prozac in aisle 12

Last night I had a dream. Not the twins, this time. Not the little blond hellions running around my legs. No, this dream was about something a lot less fun. Cleaning. Isn’t cleaning fun? I’ve astounded my family in the past year with the fact that yes, I do know how to clean. It’s not going to kill me. I just can find, oh, twenty other things that I’d rather be doing at any given time than vacuuming. Or scrubbing the floor.

If I set out a saucer of milk and some cookies at night would I attract a dishwashing fairy? A kitchen-cleaning fairy? Or just a lot of bugs? Ugh. This morning I began figuring out ways to get my butt in gear and start the indepth cleaning of this house. Unfortunately, I haven’t gotten much further than step 1: find a good movie marathon on tv to watch.

There’s no one in the world who can clean as well as those of my grandparent’s generation. I honestly don’t think it’s possible. For some reason unknownst to me but knownst to them, I never learned the trick. My mother and motherinlaw know the trick. Their kitchens gleam almost to the standards of their mothers. While I’m not sure how they come short, I know that they are, their countertops immaculate but lacking something. Their porcelain and stainless steel sinks gleaming. When I was visited after Tiffany was born, my biggest gift was the cleaning of my apartment. My mother in law and her mother cleaned my house. They scrubbed. They dubbed. They didn’t find any old men to put in the tub, but if they had I’m sure I would have woken up from my nap to find some wrinkly grey-haired man grinning at me. My goal for this week is to attempt to imitate this gift.

I’m going to clean. I don’t know how, I don’t know what will set my efforts apart from my past attempts at cleanliness, but I do know that I am going to clean. My kitchen never looked as good as when they had gotten done in there. Sure, I have a pretty good excuse. I’ve got a kid running around, and she’s my first, and that takes some adjusting. Just like my attitude needed some adjusting in the weeks leading up to her birth, and like my boobs needed serious adjusting in the weeks following. I think I’ve made a start. The mountain of clutter in the corners is starting to go down. Baby gear that she’s outgrown is being slowly folded up and put away in the closet and under the bed for my hope of a second little baby in the near future. I know from my own relatives example that if you put this stuff away in clean and tidied condition, it just needs a little airing before pulling it out and using it again. Which, if there is another baby in my future, will be much appreciated.

In the meantime why don’t I set just a little bit of a goal for today? Let’s just get through today without having to make up an errand to get me out of the house to spend money I don’t have on stuff I don’t need. I’ll work on scrubbing that bathroom to within an inch of it’s life tonight. I’ll rub a dub dub. If I find an old man, I’ll leave him out where I found him. My Boy would not be happy to hear about me bringing strange men in the house for the express purpose of putting them in the tub.

Sunday Review

A Darker Crimson disappointed me. I was expecting something, I don't know, different. Perhaps it was my preconceptions, perhaps I should have read the other books in the series first. The action was choppy, although the characters were well-written and I could have gotten to care about them a lot more than I did. I'm going to go back and read a few more in the series before definately writing it off my list of recommended rereads, but in the meantime I'm bummed.

Our next review will be The Copper Crown by Patricia Kennealy. It was the first published book in her Keltiad series, and it's been about three years since I reread it from cover to cover. Stay tuned!

Saturday, June 17, 2006

Yes, the Hippopotamus

Today we read But Not the Hippopotamus. It’s a fascinating read. And pretty soon we’re going to read another one of Sandra Boynton’s Books, Hippos Go Berserk. I think her hippos first started to appeal to me when I was young, and although I didn’t get into them that much –jumping into grownup fiction by the second grade- I’m pleased to rediscover them with Tiffany. Especially in board book form, when she can help turn pages and safely explore the book by herself.

Saturday Morning Blues

My little Crib Potato is trying to live down the onesie that she slept in last night. She woke up at the early end of her morning. Since the sun has decided to sleep in today, it wasn’t even daylight out at 6 o’clock. It’s still not shining. I should file a complaint with the Better Baby Bureau. You know, the agency that regulates baby behavior and makes sure that they all act professionally?

I went in to get her up and she was standing at the edge of the crib. Holding on with two little chubby, grubby hands to the top bar and bouncing up and down in her glee. There was a loaded diaper to deal with. A three wipe, two diaper, diaper. That’s where the clean diaper that I was going to use gets soiled in transit… It took three wipes to clean us both up. This, from a child who normally gets one. I told her, “Listen, Babe. You need to sleep. Mommy’s tired today. We made a deal, that you sleep or play quietly until 7 on Saturdays. So that Mommy can lay in bed and read her book for half an hour before she has to get up.”

Her reaction? Giggles. Le Sigh. There’s no justice in my world this morning. Only a cup of lemon ginger tea to start the long trek back into the world of the awake.

My book for today:

I should finish it by tomorrow morning. The review will be posted then.

Friday, June 16, 2006

How do we survive motherhood with our sense of humor intact? It would be more to the point to ask how anyone survives motherhood without a sense of humor. You need one. We will cry or we will laugh it off, and laughing it off is so much easier on your sanity. Tiffany spends a great deal of her day right now exploring her world. That’s how I think of it. I choose not to see it as getting into everything, doing the most annoying little motions over and over and FREAKING OVER ALREADY. She can stand up and giggle at herself in the mirror for two hours. I’ve seen her do it. She can open and close the linen cupboard- not much, just enough to make the hinge squeak. For five minutes straight. She will pull every book off the shelves within reach until she’s in serious danger of toppling the whole thing on her head. Every night after she’s gone to bed I spend an hour putting the house back to rights. Every morning I wake up, and five minutes after we start the day together everything gets pulled out and strewn back over the floor.

It’s good for me. It’s good for me to clean and good for her to mess it up. This morning she knocked over a floor lamp, shattering the bulb into a million tiny ouchy pieces. Fortunately the glass shade did not break. Even more fortunately for my Darling Girl who likes to put everything she sees into her mouth immediately, she knocked it over by crawling underneath and trying to stand up, and thus it’s fall was angled all the way across the room from her. I then spent the first half hour of her naptime kneeling on the floor and using a tweezers to pick glass out of the carpet. Then I vacuumed. Then I picked more glass. Then I vacuumed again.

Currently on the reading list: Interesting Times. I’m curling up with Terry Pratchett this weekend because he’s damn funny and I don’t have to think when I read his books. Of course, I’ve read them all twenty times each so there’s not much mystery left in the plot. It’s like sitting back on the couch and watching a 26 hour marathon of Gilligan’s Island for the third time. You know the end, you still have a good time getting there, and it’s very relaxing. Keep that sense of humor, Mamas. Keep laughing and we’ll stockpile the tissues for a rainy day.
Am I a Prairie Muffin?

Definitely. I am so one of these women. Even though the first time I came across the site I was horrified and fascinated all at once. I couldn’t stop reading it. Then I started thinking about it. There’s a lot of points that agree with what I believe deep down. So now I’m out of the closet- I own an apron and I’m not afraid to use it. Same with my sewing machine. Same with my makeup.

Not that I wear much makeup… but what I do wear I wear almost religiously. When I worked I called it my warpaint, because once my eyeliner was on in the morning I could face anything. I never was driven to tears one time that I wore full makeup. Most days I only did my eyes- that’s all I need. Besides, if I don’t wear lipstick I can’t smudge it. And there’s this lip balm that has the Cinnabon flavor and it smells SO GOOD.

My daughter is embracing her inner kitten this morning, leaving a trail of destruction in her wake. She doesn’t do it on purpose. It just hasn’t yet occurred to her that certain actions have consequences. If you crawl under a lamp and then try to stand up, it will fall over. The light bulb will break. There will be a loud noise. Mommy will shut you out of the bedroom for the rest of the day, because it’ll probably be that long before she can go in and clean up all the broken glass and vacuum.

It’s been interesting around here since she started toddlerhood. Her first steps taken holding onto my knees. Her daily routine of standing at my legs no matter where I am. The theory that Mommy can’t possibly go potty without her personal supervision. I wouldn’t trade her for all the tea in the world. I just wish that she came with a pause button so that I could halt all movement for five minutes here and there and clean up in her wake as she hurls her little body through life.

Thursday, June 15, 2006

Mama's Soapbox

It’s a good thing that I don’t iron except under extreme duress, because in the past week I’ve put the kettle on to boil and walked away, promptly forgetting that it was on, at least 4 times. I’m fortunate that it has not yet boiled dry. I don’t remember the last time I was this absent-minded. Or, maybe… that’s because I forgot to remember it?

So I set up a donate button through paypal today. I have reasons. They won’t mean anything to the wider world, and I’ll be seen as just another money-grubbing blog whore. Okay. I embrace whoredom. If it’s going to help pay the bills and get us ready for the next military-enforced move that I’m dreading will happen this winter, I’m all for it. It’s not like I’m going to have the option of going out and picking up a job or anything if that does happen- let’s face reality, folks. I’m a preemie parent. She’s got developmental issues. Her trachea malasia means that the minute I put her in daycare she’s going to start rasping and they’ll be convinced she’s dying when she’s just a little congested. They’ll send her home. I’ll lose the job, still have to pay the daycare people… you get the drift. People have told me that I have a vague talent at this wordsmithing business. So think of it more like a hat out in the street while I’m scribbling madly away at a notebook. If you feel so moved, I thank you. If not, enjoy what you read and feel free to stay a while. Same with the e-books I’ve got up for sale over at lulu.

Yes, I need to spend more time writing. I need to finish the half dozen outlines I have saved under the bed. I need to go back to developing that creative side. I just don’t seem to be able to make the time right now this instant. My free time is carved out of baby wrangling, which tends to keep me pretty damn distracted. The down time when she’s napping are when I clean up and get stuff done and feed myself. There’s not enough hours in the day.

If I got off the damned Net I’d have a bit more time. Who’s to say that it would be any more productive? I might get more done in the real world, but I’d be badly isolated from the rest of the world. The Net is my coffee club, my book club, my way to gossip about tv shows and celebrities. It’s my neighbors. The dozens of mamas who email with the ease that our grandmothers used to pop down the block. I have friends awake whenever I am, in all the corners of the globe. For someone as socially inept as I am, this is pretty damn impressive. And I don’t have to be more than an armslength away from the toddler who by turns drives me batty and makes me glow with pride.

So I'm not going to be turning off my Net connection anytime soon... welcome to the 21st century. We're all plugged in, and very few of us are brave enough to pull the plug forever.

leaving on a jet plane

I've decided to run away from home and the Net again. Next month I'll be away visiting family. Fear not! We'll return the last week in July with all new tales of the Munchkin and her loyal retainers.

In the meantime, I'd like to thank everybody who does read this site on a regular basis. It's a bit humbling to realize that I'm finally getting an audience. Please keep visiting. I like having company in my travels through Paradise.

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

mistaken identity

“Um. I have a confession to make. About your granddaughter.”

Gasp. “She’s not your baby!”

Yeaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhh. Sure. I was lactating cause I thought I really was having a six month vacation from reality. And my OB cut me open and administered seriously nasty drugs for the fun of it. It’s not like she had anything better to do on a Friday morning at 7:45.

“No, Mom. She’s my baby. She has my eyes. You know this. I just wanted to tell you that when she starts giggling while looking at me for no other reason than I exist, I call her my little nix nooks. My mischievous little pixy.”

“Oh. Well, she is.”

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

desparately seeking dramamine

IF depression is full of highs and lows, resembling the ocean waves, and
IF one must ride these waves to keep from drowning
THEN I need a little help to keep from getting seasick.

This is why I take my meds every morning. It's a reasonable solution. It's also the only thing that seems to work on a consistant basis.

This morning started out on a good foot. However, I'm beginning to suspect that it's becoming summer again. The sun wasn't much brighter than any other morning lately. The heat isn't any higher that I've noticed. Despite this, one hour out of the house this morning has made me start to lag. Tiffany is practically wilting. She's asleep now, and I'm going to let her sleep through the heat of the day right now. She's not used to it. This is the second summer she's been alive, and it takes getting used to. After all- she is my daughter.

I've battled heat sickness since I was born. Literally. I can go from cool and comfortable to overheated and minor sunstroke in under five minutes under the right conditions of a mid-atlantic summer. That's when the temps are 90-90. 90 degrees, and 90 percent humidity, and no chance of rain... Do you believe that I'm so stubborn that it's only been in the past three or four years that I've not run myself into the ground on a weekly basis during the summer? The Boy did that for me. He made me realize, finally, that I couldn't take care of myself or anybody else if I was laying in a puddle. Plus, the whiteness of my skin scared the shit out of him.

Knowing this, it's now my mission in life to keep my daughter from having to go 20+ years before she figures it out. It's also my mission to teach her the survival strategies early on. She's going to stand a chance.

Monday, June 12, 2006

What She Said

PacificMod: Life in Berkeley: figuring out mothering is maybe not so bad

Mary Poppins

There was a sharp rapping on the front door this morning. Balancing the baby on my hip I shuffled over to answer it. On my doorstep stood a woman in a navy blue coat with brass buttons. She was carrying a carpetbag and a parrot-headed umbrella. Without a word she pushed past me, and stood in the living room gazing around with a sharp eye. Then she sniffed.

“It’s not much, but I’ve had less to work with.”

“Mary Poppins?” I asked, stunned. Tiffany just giggled and hid her face in my neck.

“Indeed. I believe you placed this ad?” She snapped her fingers and a small card appeared in my hand.

Wanted: One nanny willing to do double duty at raising me and my baby. Must have the strength of ten, the willpower of twenty, and the compassion of a saint. No benefits offered. Must be available to work for early mornings and late nights. Cheerful. Play games. Good sense of humor a necessity.

“Well, I – that is, I- I mean, I was just making a joke? Letting off steam on the Net. You mean you really do exist?”

“Honey, I ain’t the Easter Bunny. So you mean to say that you have no intentions of seeking outside services?”


Her shoulders slumped. “I knew it. I *knew* it. Do you know how many families have turned me down? I haven’t worked for months. Either there’s no money, or they have rules against imagination, or they are against punishment of any sort. Now those kids I feel bad for- they’re not taught any sort of consequence to disobeying. Where will they be when they go to school and then into the adult world?”

“Have you applied for unemployment?”

“Can’t. I’m not a legal citizen because I don’t have a birth certificate. I don’t have a SSN either. No green card. The only offers I’ve had are of a distinctly off-colored nature.”

“Why don’t you come in a sit a bit. Maybe we can think of something. You know, when I was working people called me Mary Poppins…”

Sniff. “Really.” She examined me down the end of her slightly tilted nose. “I don’t see the resemblance myself.”

As she went into the kitchen to brew a pot of tea, I shook my head and locked up behind me. This was going to be a Weird Day. With a capital Weird.

Sunday, June 11, 2006

Thoughts of Stains and Leftovers

Pretreating my laundry stains was never a concern of mine until I started going through five shirts a day. There are now shirts of mine that are hanging in the back of the closet because I’m not brave enough to look at the ground in stains of milk, formula, and baby vomit. Several of the onesies that she wore went straight from her body to the trash can. I’m delighted to report that my days of dreading these stains are gone now. Hopefully, they’re behind me. I’ve learned the wisdom of pretreating. I’ve experimented with different pre-treater types. The spray bottle fits in with my lifestyle and lack of time to stand over a sink of hot soapy detergent every night. The Melaleuca stuff that my friends used to use way back when- I’m eagerly looking forward to it. Mostly because I won’t have as tight a window with that. Because with most stain-treatments, I’ve found that if you spray it on and let it sit for three weeks, I get these odd little bleachy-stains and holes in the fabric. I’m waiting for my box to arrive. I just hope I don’t run out of stuff before then.

The Slime Creature from Hoboken has set up an outpost in my fridge again. I’ve got to get in there and do a massive cleanout. There are pieces of Rubbermaid in the fridge that I am not even going to bother opening to clean out because that’s how long they’ve been in there stewing. Part of me is bummed that I’m going to be wasting the food/money/resources. The rest of me shudders and repeats that as long as we don’t think about it, the fridge won’t develop a personality of it’s very own and start plotting world domination.

Besides, my fridge would look really silly in black leather.

So I’m still a little bit in shock from hearing the Boy over the phone yesterday. This is like when he was in boot camp. All I could think of to say was “I miss you. I love you.” The delay in the lines meant that we were constantly talking over each other’s sentences. I have no idea where he was calling from, which I’ll admit is a bit unnerving sometimes. The majority of the time I just don’t want to know… I just don’t want to know. He’s just Over There somewhere. He’s coming home in two months. Six or seven weeks away. I’m still waiting…
jeweled wings glimmer in sunlight
moving so fast it looks still in the air
hummingbird flit here and there
dew shines on the grass
I stand at the window looking out
see sun shining through the trees
flowers bright against the green

Saturday, June 10, 2006

the inner dialogue

Drinking a pot of chai before bed is probably not a good idea if I expected to spend any part of the night asleep. In the end I watched Mr and Mrs Smith on cable and knitted. Waiting for the caffeine demons to stop tangoing in my head. This is what I get for giving up my daily no-doz in the morning. My inner night owl is taking over.

Sometimes I think it would be neat to look inside and see the dramas playing out. There are a couple little kids, a melodramatic angsty teen, a polished and perfectly pressed administrative assistant. All with their own opinions and desires. Makes me think about the advice given to writers- use the emotion. Find a way to use everything. Eerily similar to the Penn Dutch saying, "Waste not, want not." How can I use the inner dialogues? Well, for starts they can make for some interesting posts. I can use it for training in motherhood. Being tough when it comes to those battles of will with a toddler who got half her DNA directly from me. She gets the other half from her Daddy, and although he'd like people to believe he is a calm and rational man I'm here to tell you that he's just as pigheaded as I am. This tends to make for some interesting discussions. Such as where the child gets her stubborn streak from. The part we didn't quite count on was that it's not a matter of doubling the trait. Stubborness is multiplied exponentially.

Ah well. She is still the cutest thing in the world. I adore her.

Friday, June 09, 2006


Here's something a little better than the first post of the day. Hope you enjoy it!

faith in a mustard seed
the tiniest of things
grows, thrives
faith in myself
am I worth less than a seed
with watering and sunlight
I too can thrive
reach up to the sunlight with open arms
drink in the warmth of summer
rejoice in the shade of trees
be at peace when the leaves turn in the autumn
falling to the ground
renewed in the spring
that the light will return
that my heart will beat once more
when it wakes from this long slumber
I’m waiting for my Boy to come back home. He’s been gone now for what seems like half a year, although I know that it hasn’t been nearly that long. Our life here without him has settled into a normal routine- well, what passes for normal these days. It’s hard sometimes to keep the Boy-shaped place open and waiting for him. It’s going to be hard to let him be the Daddy again when he’s home… I’m not sure what that involves, other than bedtime stories and ice cream sundaes.

I feel as though I’m one of the shipwives back from the eighteen century. Standing on the shores looking out to sea trying to see through the waves for the first sign that the ship is coming home again. I could go on for pages and pages about love and loss and loneliness. I could go through a box of tissues one night, wondering how we’d keep going if he never came home again. Let’s not go there today.

I’ve got to live like he’s just stepped out to the corner store for a beer. He’ll be home again any minute. Someday I’m going to come home to see him sitting in his chair on the porch. Every day I get up and put in my contacts and paint my eyes. Make myself look pretty. I do not feel pretty most of the time. I don’t feel pretty, when I’ve got stained shirts and a toddler pulling on my legs. I don’t feel pretty when I’m covered with sweat at the end of the day, with baby asleep in her crib and I’m looking around at the remnants of Hurricane Tiffany.

Then again I'm pretty lucky. I've got a wonderful daughter and a wonderful husband and I get to stay at home with my baby girl. I don't have to juggle daycare and doctors and a 40 hour work week. That's not bad for this economy. Sometime real soon I'll see her walking towards me. Any day now I'm anticipating her first real hug for me. I tell her that she's already got me wrapped around her finger, that she doesn't have to try anymore. I want to tell her. I'm afraid that she'd stop hugging me. Silly of me, I know that. But she's my baby and I'm her mama- that's the way it's supposed to be. Her face lights up when I come in the room. That's all the love that I need.

Thursday, June 08, 2006

The Dog Days of Summer

Here's something new. I shouldn’t be surprised at this; after all we live in a country made famous for the people responsible for the lawsuits that made warnings on coffee cups saying “HOT”. Isn’t that a no-brainer? Unless you specifically requested iced coffee? However, this has reached another level. A level that I would like to label the Dead Fish Circle of Hell. This is where we will send everyone who does things worthy of being slapped with a dead fish. These idiots form a special subset of society; I think I see here the results of over-permissiveness in our youth.

I’m not saying corporal punishment is good, and I’m not saying that we should send all our kids to reform schools. I’m just saying that it’s a good idea to teach our children that their actions have consequences. If you’re in a position that this lady was, I can see where you would be upset. Rightfully so. A 4 week old puppy should not be taken from his mother. You would be correct in seeking recompense, in reporting the breeder to the PETA folks, and the local sheriff’s office. You would even be correct in filing a lawsuit for full refund plus the cost of the vet bills. I think that most of us would also agree that hitting the breeder repeatedly with a dead puppy is going over the top.

Who can we blame for this sort of behavior? Do we blame the schools for teaching that as long as their self-esteem is high it doesn’t matter if they can’t read or add? Do we blame parents for putting kids in daycare so that they can work to feed their families? Do we blame the docs for over-prescribing meds and diseases? Yes and no. The relevant thing to do is to start holding society responsible for their actions. If you get road rage, you should be held accountable. If you scream and lose your temper at a retail clerk because your credit card has been declined, you should be made to apologize. If you haul off and beat a woman with a dead puppy, well, I’m not sure what the appropriate response is. But I’m also pretty sure that it’s not going to be applied.

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

(Fill in the blank) Nation: better living through modern chemistry

Is this world over medicated and over diagnosed? It seems that every time I pick up a magazine I see ads for five of the newest wonder drugs, the happy man/woman/child/family on the medication raves how much better life is with the drug, how they don’t know how they lived before it. And nowhere does it say what the drug is used to treat… I end up reading the fine print trying to figure it out. How many people just rip that ad out and bring it to their doctor, and how many doctors will willingly prescribe the latest and greatest?

Over diagnosed. Syndrome this and Disorder that. It’s never our fault. Even the stuff that is our fault isn’t our fault because it was just the disorder. New wonder drugs are available to treat it, but insurance won’t cover that. Sometimes they do, but we are too ashamed of the label to tell them and thus go slowly broke paying for our meds. The disorder may go out of fashion at some point in the future and we’ll stop flaunting it- but that label will follow us forever. If you plan on changing jobs, who doesn’t in this economy, it’ll turn into a preexisting condition and they won’t cover you at all. Not that they’ll tell you this up front. No, they’ll wait until you file a claim, pocketing your premiums and denying care.

Am I just a bit bitter about this topic? Yup. Does it personally affect me and my family? Not right now, but it used to and I’m willing to bet that it will again. Although we’re covered by Tricare- “We Try to Care” –and don’t have to deal with deductibles and copays and the nightmare of referral, because I had cancer as a young girl I cannot afford to be without insurance. It will cost an arm and a leg in the civilian world to get private insurance, and I can forget about life insurance. Our daughter was a preemie. She’s screwed now as well. That early PDA and time spent on a ventilator is all it will take to make any future policy too expensive for her to afford. My husband really wasn’t kidding or exaggerating when he told me at her birth that if he wasn’t in the navy he would have lost both me and the baby. And he’d still be in debt the rest of his life trying to pay for trying to save our lives.
Ages ago when I was a wage slave in a beautiful little glass bubble, I found a Dress. It was perfect. Princess seamed, sleeveless, in a dark purple patterned with flowers only a shade lighter than the background. It fit me like a glove. Hugged my waist and curves with just enough tension to the fabric to make me feel like a movie star. Best of all it was on sale, clearanced all the way down to ten dollars. I’m never giving this dress up. It was one of the last things I had to put away when I was pregnant, and one of the first things back out of the closet when I stopped pumping and let the battle of the milk supply go.

Right now I’m sitting here wishing that I could do something productive again, rather than just baby wrangling and scrimping pennies. Story of my life. It’s become a sad little refrain in my blog over the past couple of weeks and I promised that I was going to stop doing that. So let’s focus instead on what I can do.

I can keep painting those little glass jars. I can dream of new things to do to the lids so that they’re pretty and shiny and cute. I can keep knitting little blankies for the NICU preemies. And I can nurture my daughter. That’s pretty damn productive. In fact, one could make the argument that it’s what Motherhood is all about. There’s nothing better in the world than being able to raise a child. Except maybe, raising a child that you and your partner created out of love. A child with your eyes and his smile. That’s just about perfect.

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Can somebody explain to me why, with a kitchen full of food, a shelf of cookbooks, and with all my genetic culinary heritage at my fingertips, I only really want to eat ramen noodles with jarred alfredo sauce? Must go to Costco this week and buy more of this nummy goodness. Must stop blogging in thought patterns of Captain Kirk. mmmm. Ramen...

Enough, already

I'm done with whining for this month. We now return you to the regularly scheduled Paradise in which I live. A reality in which SI is finally being recognized by the media in something other than a semi-hysterical rant. Used to be that this was the sign of troubled loner adolescents. The sort that became the Guidance Office Darlings. When I was back in PA I visited my old high school, and learned that you really can't go home ever again. I walked back into the Guidance office and was stunned because it had changed. New faces. New people. The same old furniture and decorations. I felt unreal in that moment. If I was still practicing I would have raced into the bathroom that instant and driven a paperclip under my fingernail until I saw blood. But I'm not practicing.

I'm a grownup these days. Even though I'm a Borderline [borderline personality disorder] I'm a functioning one. One with a real relationship. A marriage that is as healthy as any other. A beautiful child whom I love with all my heart. I'm still fighting all those unhealthy things and patterns... jumping to conclusions, seeing myself in movies and books, and playing out imaginary scenarios in my head. I still play things out in my head. Often. I just have learned to be real careful about letting them out into the open. That line between dreams and reality, it's written in hospital records, the scars on my arms and legs, and in the sobering moments of my Black depressions.

I'm going to keep being a grownup. I'm going to suck it up. Wait out this deployment with a smile on my face and a quiet spirit. Keep the reality buried deep. It won't poison my loved ones anymore. I've got to hold the pain, I've got to hoard it like treasure because it reminds me that I'm me. I don't even know why I need to hold the pain always. I just know that I'm still not ready to let it go.

Monday, June 05, 2006

I'm having a Black Morning. I hope that this will quit by this evening when Baby goes to sleep for the night, cause it sucks. And it's such a load of crap to be dragging around by the ankles. I want to crawl into bed and pull the covers over my head and wait for the world to go away. That's not going to help. Even if my Boy were here right now, I don't think I'd be any happier. I have to call and schedule my pap smear, and I have to call and reschedule my shrink, and I'm just so tired and sick of all of this.

Tomorrow will be better. Tonight will start to get better. If I believe it hard enough, it'll happen.

Sunday, June 04, 2006

Wanted: One Life, Slightly Used

Obviously, I either have no life or am extremely addicted to the Net. Which according to a lot of people is the same thing... but there's no new Dooce today. There was no new Dooce yesterday. I feel the strangest co-dependant feeling tonight, like I've been stood up or something. Which is ridiculous, cause it's only a Webblog, and she's only a Mom just like me (only WAY cooler). It also means that Hello, She has a life, why don't I? Then that snarky part of my inner bitch comes back and says, Well She's got her husband home. If mine was here, I'd have better things to do too.

I just need a life. Some kind of social life that doesn't exist online. My life this weekend has consisted mainly of surfing various blogs. The equivalent of small talk. I don't even write about anything that interesting. I did read three books though, which I guess is impressive to some people. That I may not have a clean house but hey- I've been knitting, the Munchkin is clean and fed and happily asleep for the night, and I've read three books in two days.

Maybe it's just hormonal. Maybe it's a sign that I'm finally feeling like a person again. My brain has been asleep for so many months now that I am at a bit of a loss as to how to proceed. The week ahead of me has actual events penciled in. Things like playdates and okay, three doctor appts, but at least two of them are only a quick followup/checkin and the third one is a final wrapup. Library days, and playing in the sun with my Munchkin. Cool. Just keep telling myself that I need to be happy for what I have. Stop whining about what you're missing.
I just listed my Swiss Army Cheese for sale over on Ebay. If anyone's looking for cheesy collectible or gag-gift suitable items, take a look!
When will the rest of the world grow up and get a clue? Right now I'm tired of budgeting and scrimping and saving just to be able to do something fun in the distant future. I'm really tired of it. I'm cashing in all my survey points and doing what I can around here like recycling my bottles to get some spare change together.

Oh, I'm not dead broke right now. I just see lots of plane tickets in the future and no clue how I'm going to pay for all of them. I may have to ask the inlaws to cover one of the tickets. This is the downside to being responsible enough to want to pay the rent and car note on time the rest of the summer.

I also want to do something fun when my Boy comes home. I want to go away with him overnight to the Lodge, for at least one 24 hour period. We can lock the door and watch tv together, and hold each other so tightly it feels like we're attached. It's a stereotype. It's something you see in comic strips or in teenagers making out in public with no regard for the rest of the world. Now we're two "mature" married people, we're parents for godssakes, and we're going to be doing that.

I can't even put it into words right now how I feel at the thought that if I can just squirrel away enough pennies, I can do this. It gives me hope. It gives me some strength. It kicks me in the ass to do it again and to keep scrimping.

Saturday, June 03, 2006

Size Anxiety

Would a kick in the ass come in my size, or would I have to special order it?

While my energy levels are returning to where I wanted them to be, if not quite what I wish them to be, I find that all my new free time is spent doing lazy things rather than housework things. The house is still a mess. The kitchen still gets picked up only once a day rather than as I go, which I'd prefer. While my trash is taken out on a regular basis and laundry still manages to get done every few days, I don't vacuum as much as I would like given the small mammal that insists on eating breakfast and most of her snacks directly off the carpet.

I cleaned the kitchen floor earlier this afternoon. Despite the mopping, the floor feels very tacky right now. Maybe I didn't do it right- although I thought I did. It's hard to know exactly how much I get up off that floor unless I'm scrubbing on my hands and knees. That's the way I -hate to say 'prefer'- to do it. Even though I have a very nice mop for the purpose.

So what am I doing instead of cleaning? I'm reading. And knitting. And playing on the 'Net. Now that I feel the strength to do these things instead of merely trying to prop my eyes open long enough to keep an eye on the Munchkin, I'm gleefully spending every spare moment trying to do them. I called the doc to get my Pill refilled, and found out that they're going to be mean and make me get a pap smear this year. This, despite my entire too-pelvic exam-happy medical team of the pregnancy. Sigh. I got a healthy baby at the end of it, so that's the important thing. Got to suck it up and bite my lip and count the holes in the acoustical ceiling tiles one more time. I just so don't want to do this.
Finally. Last night I got off my butt after Tiff went to sleep and put her newer, toddler-friendly carseat into the car. I brought in the old one, which is still stashed next to the desk because I haven't figured out which closet I'm going to stash it in. This means that she has found it, and has decided to climb all over it. Time to Explore Our World again.

Someday I'll get motivated again. There's a list as long as my elbow of stuff that I want to get done. There's a list at least as done of stuff that I know I should get done. I want to keep this house looking semi-respectable instead of the disaster area that it's become. I never want to see it become like a certain relative's house... and I don't have half the reasons that she did for letting her house become that way.

Friday, June 02, 2006

I'm reading a book about the Galveston Hurricane of 1900. Isaac's Storm. About 2/3 of the way through right now and it's interesting. It brings to mind Isabel. Hurricane Isabel, which made the news out here about the same way as the Cedar Fires made the news back East. At least, in the affected areas.

Isabel. I'm always going to remember that one. It was the scariest hurricane I ever saw. We weren't even in the worst path of it. But we were hit by the side, and that was plenty for me. A coworker of mine didn't have part of his house when it was over. When the rain and wind stopped there were trees down everywhere. We had no power for close to two days. The fortunate thing at our apartment complex was that the trees that came down came down parallel to the buildings and lots. They fell across the yards, and the stairs. Not the cars, not the walls. When the sun came out again we heard chainsaws, and knew that it was over. Except for the cleanup.

The day Isabel came to town we had just been reunited. The Boy flew back from basic training the night before. We were going to get married. Got the license first thing in the morning. The courthouse was closing and sending everyone home at that point. The rain was beginning as we pulled back into the parking lot at home.

Next week, when the waters had mostly abated from most of the state, we were married under clear blue skies. Nothing but blue skies. All I could see, washed clean for us. That's pretty sappy... but that's what hurricanes have come to mean to me. That when it was over we called our parents to tell them that we were still alive. That we had power again. That the car was okay, and that we didn't have flooding where we were, and that it was alright.

Isaac's Storm was ten times worse, at the very least. They didn't have doppler radar or satellites. They didn't even have knowledge that it was coming before it was there. These sort of tragedies didn't only happen in the past, and they're not new things even though the media seems to think that every tsunami and typhoon and earthquake is the worst. That's one of the reasons that I'm so fascinated with the pandemic of 1918. Can we learn anything at all from the past disasters? I'm inclined to think so. I don't mean by way of planning ahead or anything like that, although we did learn an awful lot about construction techniques, and fire safety codes, and that sort of thing. I'm talking about the human spirit and how we survive these events. How do we pick up the pieces of our lives and go on? How do we rebuild?

My Boy could be killed at any time. He is in a government-declared combat zone. The odds are that given his occupation and vicinity, that he'll come home safely to me. He could also be blown to kingdom come without much warning and the first I'll know of it will be a knock on the door. He could also be hit by a bus crossing the street. I wouldn't stop existing. I would want to stop existing, but I wouldn't. I have a child to care for, I have a life to continue. These are the lessons that I'm taking from history. This is how I go on. Just like every sailor's wife that ever lived. Wartime or peacetime, there are a thousand things that can go wrong out there. Instead of walking the shore looking out to sea I pace along our windows and look up to the stars. I check my email a dozen times a day. I'm online from the minute I wake up to the last second before I go to sleep at night. And I go on.

Recipe for Yumminess

Today I was a bit stumped over what to eat, but I knew I'd better figure it out before the child drove me nutty. So I defrosted a couple chicken breasts, sliced them into strips, plopped them into an oven bag, and added 1 can cream of mushroom soup, 1 can of mushrooms (pureed in the food processor), some minced onion and garlic, half a cup of white wine, and slow cooked it for two hours. Then I poured it out into a baking dish, and mixed in a cup of sour cream. Yum. Oh My God Yum.

Later on I'll bake some rice or couscous, and use it as a base since there's a lot of sauce. But oh so yummy. I could probably drink the sauce whole right now cause it's so yummy.

Thursday, June 01, 2006

Sailor's Wife's Lament

Stand by my window
stars tonight shine on me
on my love so far away
cold, here, no arms hold me
when I wake I’m still alone surrounded by families
all I can see are mommies and daddies
all I can see is the babies sitting
on their father’s laps
laughing in the sun
my daughter is loved
has a mother trying to fill the gap
how do I keep smiling when my heart breaks?
how will I tell her when she learns how to ask?
when the sea is cruel and wide
it lays between me and my heart


My daughter is chewing on the handle of her umbrella stroller, having just managed to pull it out into the center of the floor. This, combined with the yarn strewn out and around the chair, almost convince me that yes indeed I have given birth to a small cat. At least a mammal. This definately goes along with the Holy Crap I'm a Mammal thoughts of last summer. Why? Moms already know this one. It's a mystical feeling that comes with lactation, even though I never managed to breastfeed. ...and yet I pumped so technically we fall into this gray area wherein she was breastfed for the first couple of months but I never nursed.

Lactation. It's not just for milk cows anymore. It's for mammals.
There are days when I don't know what the hell I was thinking, waiting as long as we did to have this child. Then there are the days I remember, oh yeah, we wanted to wait until we had insurance to pay for said child. And the job stability for the Boy so that we could afford to have me stay home with her. And the insurance so that we could afford to take care of all of us. I guess in the long run the timing was just about perfect. As I cuddled with the kidlet this morning, I nestled her baby sweet head under my chin and felt that warm rush of love through my body. Yup. I want another. I wanted to race to the computer and tell the Boy that he has to give me another baby just like this one. Twice the love. Twice the cuddle. Yes, and three times the fatigue, fights, laundry, all around workload. But for those cuddle moments I could see it happen. For the promise of that I'd do it all over again.

So, soon. I guess. Maybe. I don't know. I have to have the Boy back home again first. Watching A Baby Story on TLC is not exactly helping matters, either. The only cure for this is time. Perhaps toddlerhood. I hope. Wish I could shake this baby fever, at least for now, because it would be crazy to have another one right now.