Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Thursday, December 20, 2012


she rests her head quietly upon the snowy covered field. 
obstructing view.
covering the earth in her fog.
she's heavy and cool to the touch.  damp and silent.

she rests upon us in this hour ... wherein we are all fighting the urge to enjoy every second when we can never be entirely sure what will happen after this second. ticks. past.

i watched her from my car window.  in a backseat.
far away from my own family. 
the ache is familiar.

the wanting to be near them as the night falls upon the snowy ground and the world becomes dark and the fog settles her head into slumber.

it was so much more than just wanting to be near my own children.
it was realizing that i've been in that place before.
where the dark closes in and surrounds you. 
pressing into you and shoving you downward.

during the day, i can cope.
busy with the things
and the lovely chaos of our lives.

but as night awakens, i can't help but sob for the mamas that didn't get another second ...

i've walked in shoes that felt eerily similar.
(though i'm sure weren't the same at all.)

i remember the heartache at night.  when the world was silent and i would break down in a shower of hot water spilling over my shoulders.

and the days were filled with empty.
hearing without listening.
talking without feeling.

the dark has an awful way of making us feel small. 
hidden and lost.

i want to remind them/us that the sun is still there.
there is still warmth and bright behind the fog and blackness.
(dark never fully leaves us)
but morning comes.
fog lifts.
the sun shines.
and beauty is still possible.

and i need to remind myself to be thankful for the chaos.
i could be missing it.
with an ache that isn't easily lifted.
like the fog.
that lies her head down upon the snowy blade of grasses as we drive past.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

pleading whispers.

last minute on sale pumpkins.
please be good in the store threats.
6 o clock pm on the eve before halloween.

i've felt lost and heavy with a husband feeling much too far away in an area bombarded with wind and rain and hurricane.  i am used to being a sole parent on his days away.  but extreme weather often makes me feel more alone and aware of what ifs. 

i had contemplated forgetting about pumpkins altogether ... feeding the squirrels just wasn't in my october budget.  and then i remembered that pumpkin carving is important.  so we whisked away to the store and bought on sale pumpkins.

on sale perfectly round gorgeous gourds in hand, we had dinner. 
and set out to carve.

of course i had preconceived pinterest notions of vw bus carvings and witches with green noses.
and then i let the kids take over and map out silly faces over the orange bumps of the gourd. while i carved out their designs and said "stand back" and made claims about the sharpness of knives and emergency room needles.

we did homework.  cora researched pumpkins for kindergarten and sang me a song about the lifecycle of a pumpkin. 
how do you fix a broken jack o' lantern?  with a pumpkin patch!
was the bit of information that she found most important enough to include on her homework.
also?  pumpkin flowers are edible.
just in case you were wondering.

stella struggled to combine spelling words into sentences.  harder than it sounds, yo.
wrote/wrists.  wring/wrap.  gnat/gnawed.  knock/speaks.
and on and on.

i may or may not have threatened to compost pumpkins for people that were not finishing their homework.

i didn't.  of course.
even though homework took forever.

finn was so tired. 
he balked at the mention of bed.  and went to tell me i'm stupid and weird.  because that's what the boy always says anymore. 
i quietly said ...
and my boy who has developed a fear that santa is watching.  stopped in his tracks ... walked quietly up to me and said "i wanna watch mickey mouse."  and then turned around.  and turned around again quietly snuggling into my arms. i wanna go to bed.

is santa here?  he whispered ...
i no want santa to be here.  he pleaded in a barely audible whisper.

poor boy.  scared of santa and not getting toys.  i don't really know where the idea stemmed from ... coughcough sisters coughcough.  but it kinda works.  and i'm banking on it right now.

i lay next to him. watching his chest quietly rise and fall.  he softly pulls strings from his blankie with his teeth as his eyelids become heavy with sleep.  his breath slows.  the restless fidgeting ceases and his body sinks into the pillow.

i kiss his forehead and whisper plead for these moments to last forever.
i know they won't. can't. 
i'm going to miss this someday, won't i?

just write.  number 59.  over at heather's place ... go here ... you won't regret it.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012


stella crashed through the door ... a mere steps behind smiley happy cora.

she said when i asked what was wrong.
because duh.  mamas know when something is wrong.  i knew it before she stepped foot upon the entry. 
i opened my arms to her.  she fell into them.
and sobbed.

upon every uptake of breathing she spit out worries and embarrasments.  the bus driver yelling at her over the microphone about eating on the bus.  the girls that want to sit by her in the morning but then avoid her on the afternoon bus ride.  how they tell her to leave them alone.  how they tell her to not bother them.

my rule follower.
who apparently forgot the rule about not eating on the bus ...
though if i'm allowed to say so?  getting home over an hour after school gets out in the afternoon is much too long. poor kiddos.

rules schmules ... is what i muttered into her hair.  i could care less about bus rules.

i shushed her sobbing and wrapped her in my legs on the floor combing my fingers through her fine hair.

we whispered about friendships.  true friendships. 

her daddy called from states away ... and she sent him a photo of her cursive double iis.  she took the phone into the other room to talk to him.  privacy.  quiet.  peaceful. 

i don't always know what she talks about on the phone with her daddy and her best friend anymore.  i guess that's ok. 

i do know that her smiles are harder to find. 
i do know that she loves chocolate (dark. especially.  and that's why i couldn't bear to photoshop the slight smear of chocolate off of her face in the photo above.) 
i do know that she has people to fall into when life gives her trials. 
i do know that she is good at math.  and reading.  and cartwheels. 
i do know that she can successfully find youtube videos to teach herself how to do walking handstands. 
i do know that she is ok.
i do know that things are bound to get harder.
i do know that i will learn and grow as much as she will over the next several years.
i do know that jeremy and finners will most likely want to buy a motorcycle with a sidecar and run away while i deal with all the girly stuff.
i do know that we will all make it.

i just hope that the scars and heartbreaks don't last long.

just write.  installment number (insert crazily high number here).  want to see more?  or add your own??  go here ...

yes.  august and september and most of october slipped through my fingertips.  i tried to write.  but the words were lost.  i'm forcing myself to find them again.

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

refrigerator pickles. and water parks.

we've pretty much had cucumbers exploding from our ears these past few weeks.  in fact.  if you showed up to the garage sale AND expressed interest in gardening, plants, composting and/or cucumbers ... you may have been forced to take a few with you when you left.

the ladies that expressed interest in my red and green tomatoes, though?  totally had to pay fifty cents ... because i'd not yet had the opportunity to eat one. 

but cucumbers?  ALL YOURS.

and we've been eating them quite a bit lately.  stella likes them with ranch.  cora likes them on her sandwiches.  finn avoids them.

but all of us like them this way.

in fact?  at dinner the other night?  we ate a total of 2 cucumbers just.like.this.

(sharing my grandma's ancient cucumber secrets with y'all.  you can thank me later.)

step one.
cut up your cucumbers ... we've been blessed with skinny long cucumbers this year.  (my favorite).  i'm fairly certain that that has to do with the type that i planted ... but i have no idea.  we cut them up variety pack style.  1.  skinny slices.  2.  fat slices.  3.  half peeled. (which makes them have a stripey wonderful pattern.  obviously my favorite.)  4.  and full peeled. 

2.  put them in something.  add water. 

3.  add salt.  and here's where my best friend sometimes wants to ex-best friend me ... because i have no idea on the amount.  i add a bunch.  and when i stick my finger in the water and taste it?  it tastes like a slightly salty watery flavor. 

4.  let sit.  in the refrigerator.  usually.  see that pretty stripey goodness?

5.  after awhile ... take them out and pour out about 1/4 to 1/3 of the water.  add vinegar.  (we got crazy this time and used apple cider vinegar.  surprisingly good.)  put them back in the refrigerator and let them soak in the vinegar and salt water solution. 

and then?  take this poor boy to the splash pad that you mentioned before actually starting the refrigerator pickles. 

summertime.  consists of refrigerator pickles and water parks.  i don't want it to ever end.

Sunday, July 15, 2012


i hovered over her ... like a new mama watches frettingly over her newborn baby.
except my baby laid swaddled amongst mountains of pink and green quilts in the top bunk of the bunk bed.  little baby left.  long lanky legs.  a mess of sweatydrenched hair upon her pillow.

her breathing was shallow.  so shallow.  and within her chest i could feel the fluttering of her heart.
too fast.
much too fast for a normal night of sleep.
she stirred.
while i struggled knowing that i agreed to the vaccine that coursed through her body making her feel this way.  (please let us not get into the vaccine argument ... i struggle enough within my own heart as it is.)

she began fitfully tossing around freeing her arms and legs from the tightly bundled blankets. 
she awoke and i pulled her down into my arms.  took temperatures.  laid lukewarm cloths upon her forehead.  offered medicine ... hoping that it would allow us a few hours of sleep.
she slept tossing and turning.

i hovered.

until the sun started to peek through the curtains
and her temperature settled.
and her breathing relaxed into the softness of her spot beside me in my bed.
and her heartbeat s.l.o.w.e.d. enough that i didn't fear it any longer.

her heart.

is amazing and beautiful. i remember watching it on a screen while she hovered inside of me.  it was always their little heart flutters that sent me into tears.  because it proved to me that they were. 

we've learned that the heart i watched so strongly beating at one time ... has a funny little murmur.  a whistle of sorts.  and though this illness and this heart stuff have no common ground ... i'm realizing how much worry that this has put in me.  and we're still learning more about it. 

what we do know for certain?  is that her heart loves.  big.  and i guess that's the most important thing.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012


i keep telling myself this ...

there is so much sometimes.  changes.  that terrify me and excite me.  things that we know and feel safe with are tossed aside rambunctiously to try new things that in the end will make better.  but create major uncomfort right now. 

and it's so silly.  because we were in this boat once before ... and didn't feel right with it then.  and it (maybe. kinda) still doesn't feel totally right.  but we're doing it anyways. 

and i have to keep telling my thoughts (and my husband) that this?  right here?  is exactly what we are supposed to be doing. 

welcome to vague blog post number 283. 

in more exciting news?
please excuse me.  i am a mere cellphone camera photo.  jen didn't bother to take out the big girl camera for me.
we've been eating at home a lot.  it's in our "saving money" plan. 
cherries are delicious.
they look pretty in a bowl.
you will totally confuse non-blogger children when you tell them to wait a second while you take a photo of their food before they are allowed to consume it.
um.  why is your mom taking a picture of the cherries?

the heat has forced us inside more than i would like.
which tends to lead to a lot of time on the kindle.
or this ...
which i totally stalk with my camera. 
because holy cuteness.
i love that they just love to be together.

my kitchen table constantly looks like this.
and little people towns adorn my living room floor.
and yes.  that is a pizza crust rising on my kitchen table with a mess of art supplies and christmas tree airplane director people lights surrounding it.  oy.

you should never trust a two year old boy with a spray hose in his hands.
because he will spray you.
even if you are holding the big girl camera.
which you will quickly stuff into your shirt without cares as to what the neighbors caught a glimpse of ... and then you will learn never to trust a two year old with a spray hose.

hi.  i'm a phone picture again.  mom had to take me out when the two year old attempted to murder the big girl camera.
that troll is from my grandma's collection.  i miss her everytime that i see him.

speaking of missing people.  today was what would have been papa joe's 90th birthday.  we celebrated on sunday.  with cake.  and less tears than i had expected.  and it's this quote that makes my heart hurt today ... thinking of him.  and the family he left too soon.

happy birthday papa joe.  i hope you having a grand party celebrating.  you are so so missed.

my girlygirls are taking piano lessons.  oh.my.heart.
i tear up every time i see them sit down to practice. 

pure excitement around here.

we are (exactly) WHERE we are ... meant. to. be.