Friday, January 28, 2011

Sister Steps Up

This is the week that never ends. Beginning with a call Monday afternoon about an exploded radiator from Hubby, it has been nothing but a mad dash. 

Who would've thought living smack in the middle of both of our workplaces could lead to so much driving? Every morning, except today - thank goodness for his four-day-workweek schedule - our one working vehicle has put upwards of 150 miles on it per day! Ughh the hours I have spent driving in fog, rain, and through tornadoes touching down yes the weather decided simply driving endlessly wasn't enough. Plus, before and after school events have been especially heavy this week, only adding to the joy of my week. All this just to say when I finally arrived home after schmoozing with parents until 7:30 last night, I wasn't at the top of my game.

So, it can be forgiven when I inform my fellow readers that even though I know Youngest and her-brain-that-doesn't-quit, I allowed her to pick her bedtime story. Given my heightened level of exhaustion, it wasn't until she began to bury her head in the pillows that it dawned on me The Nutcracker has a scary bad guy that might threaten my chances of zoning out for an hour before bed Youngest's chances of falling asleep. Quickly picking-up the fear factor here, I found a fairy princess place to stop for the night. Hoping upon hope that this would leave her with visions of fairies and magic instead of seven-headed mice.

No such luck. She was up as I was shutting the door.

After repeated attempts to calm, offers of my bed, the dog, a trip to Disney anything that would allow me some down time, she was still unable to sleep. Apparently there are "scurrying noises in this house." Knowing she wouldn't sleep alone and that Teen was not doing homework on the computer in her room, I sent her there. 

The shock on Teen's face at being called to bat was priceless. She gave only meager resistance to this, and allowed Youngest to snuggle in. Within 15 minutes Teen came out to inform us that Youngest was asleep and we could move her now. Uhh, no. My brain was back on line and knew A move would only necessitate the need for Youngest to come into my bed in an hour when she woke with nightmares. I explained that Youngest was huddled in a corner of the bed, was a breeze to sleep with and would be fine until morning. 

Maybe it was Teen's head cold that had sapped her energy for a fight, or maybe she is just really that sweet. Whatever the reason, everyone here got a good night's rest.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Catch and Release

It snatches the bait and you feel a gentle tug on the line. Wanting to keep the little guy, you give some line and out it swims. In its mad dash to freedom it pulls a bit too hard. Then slowly, ever so gently you reel it back a bit. Sensing the need, you feed it more line watching its progress in the dance of away and near. Feeling the give you've offered, it bounds to the weeds. Knowing this direction will only end badly, you gently yet with a firm hand reel it back again. Eventually you land it, only to have the briefest of moments to snap a quick picture, marvel at your success, and set it free. 

After a week of "run and reel" with Teen I used fishing as an analogy to parenting while talking with my mom. She laughed and then told me that parenting is actually like flying a kite - courtesy of Erma Bombeck.
You spend a lifetime trying to get them off the ground.   
You run with them until you're both breathless...
they crash...they hit the rooftop...
you patch and comfort, adjust and teach. 
You watch  them lifted by the wind and assure them that someday they'll fly. 
Finally they are airborne, they need more string and you keep letting it out. 
But with each twist of the ball of twine, there is a sadness that goes with the joy.  
The kite becomes more distant, and you know it won't be long before that beautiful creature will snap the lifeline that binds you together 
and will soar as it is meant to soar, free and alone. 
Only then do you know that your job is done."

Whether your parenting is closer to fishing or kite-flying it is all about the give and take. 

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Senseless Sunday

I have been saving little tidbits in my head in the hopes of collecting enough debris to do a fully-fragmented blog. But, let's just face it my head is too full of debris already and the new bits are in danger of pushing out the old bits along with any trash that is accumulating in there! 

~ I have embarked upon the quest of reading Mark Twain's autobiography. Let me tell you, for a man with no access to blogs to record his life and even a man that has that access his memory is incredible! The entire work, which will encompass three volumes, will be a sight to behold. I have the recently released volume one and the size alone is impressive. Then to read his stories and witness his sarcastic wit a man after my own heart is amazing. But, it will take some time for me to finish...

~ We have wonderful neighbors ok the crazy family down the street not so much . The other night I had a massive fish-fry with the bounty recovered on a recent outing, sent a plate piled high next door and would have sent some across the street, but they weren't home. Just as I was finished cleaning up the grease which was thinly layering the kitchen there was a knock at the door. My charter captain neighbor had pounds more of freshly caught and filleted Amberjack to hand over. We seem to have the fishes thing down, now all we need are the loaves of bread.

~ I recently read a very funny post at Life of a New Dad talking about Toy Story toys. It called to mind an outing with Teen when she was much younger and very much wanted a Woody doll. Imagine my much younger self's amusement and horror at walking through the local retail store with a small girl loudly insisting that she wanted "a big Woody." Ahh, Disney, yet another laugh you take at a parent's expense.

~ Speaking of laughs at my expense here is one just for you... I have been blogging for 2 years. I visit other blogs and make comments much of the time.Yet it was only recently that I actually read the boxes under the comment line to see that you can subscribe to comments. No. I. am. not. kidding. I harp on kids weekly to read directions yet, here I was ignoring the directions and trying to remember where I commented so I could go back and check to see if there were any responses. Then I stopped commenting on people's comments because I thought, well hell, they aren't going to remember and come back to check so who cares right? DUH! So, now I will be a better replier - I promise. If you click that little box you will receive a follow-up comment. 

Now, what are you waiting for...leave some comments!

Friday, January 14, 2011


Rigid with foreboding
i bear witness
to the scene unfolding

Filled with self-loathing's wrath
plummeting down
it's cold ebony path

Passed with few compunctions
were promise, hope
now abandoned junctions

Momentum gains, fate looms
I scream warning
witness with silent blooms

Carried by wind, the shout
i watch helpless
praying for resolve, stout

Rigid with foreboding
i bear witness
to the scene unfolding

Monday, January 10, 2011

Taking the Fall

It was one of those rare and precious moments in the middle school classroom. Students were sprawled or tucked into various corners, book in hand. Not one person was giggling, trying desperately to send-off an illicit text, or mouthing a joke to a nearby friend. There was no emergency need to visit the clinic or the facilities. No one was requiring any redirection of any type.

The entire class was simply engaged in the act of reading. 

Of course, that left me bored. I wove through the silence basking in the glory of this small success, mentally noting the progress of various students. As I monitored an emptier section of class the silence was broken. Not by a pin dropping, rather by a much more human sound. The soft "pfffltt" could be heard around the room. 

Being immediately beside the culprit, I knew from whence the sound had come. But, I allowed the giggles to be directed at me. After all, I have already survived middle school.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Ahh, The Cynicism (of youth)

You have probably read about the strange occurrence of the dying Red Wing Blackbirds in Arkansas. Maybe you have also read about the same type of thing happening in Louisiana. You probably even read about the mass die-off of Drum Fish as well. 

Many people are wondering what happened and why. While we know Otter Thomas at Life of a New Dad likes to hunt, I doubt he was responsible for this many deaths occurring at once ;)  It is a series of events that just makes you scratch your head and say "hmmm." 

With all of this in mind, I was making conversation at dinner last night. I started to ask Teen if she had any thoughts on this matter. Then I stopped mid-sentence. How would the younger 2 view this event? Would it add more worry to Youngest's ever-worrying mind? 

Nothing will get your kids attention faster than starting and stopping a sentence while you reconsider. especially if you say something inane like "oh wait, that may be inappropriate" Suddenly they were all ears. I asked if anyone had seen the news about the birds. Boy piped up that he had, but wanted to know more and Teen said she had briefly looked at it as well. We talked about some of the details and I wondered what had caused these events. 

Within moments of posing this rhetorical question aloud, Teen declared, "It was the government running tests" While Boy proclaimed, "It was aliens."

Maybe I should watch the instant view Netflixs of X-files in my room...

Monday, January 3, 2011

Fish Tales

White knuckled, bouncing and bracing himself, the salt of wind-formed tears mix with the cold spray of the ocean.
"I will be tough. I will not fall into the ocean," is the mantra he repeats silently as the craft hits wave after wave at speeds nearing 50mph on this windswept, high seas day.  

As he lands painfully, nearly knocking himself and his friend onto the white expanse of the deck, he wonders if there will be a pay-off for this harrowing ride under a cloudless sky. Another jostle and miraculously the boat begins to slow. 

The sheltered inlet offers blessed stillness and peace.Tentatively the boys both rise and test their sea legs again. Shaking off their previous fear they offer shaky laughter in response to quips about the ride from their fathers and neighbor while reaching for their poles. 

With poles in hand silently dismissing thoughts of sopping clothes and cold breezes they set to their task in earnest. Casting, reeling, and repeating the process, silent boy prayers are offered to the sea.

A bite, a tug, set the hook and reel it in. Ogle at the size or snap fingers with frustration that a mere inch in length can cause. Laugh with their dads as their bounty grows. And know, perhaps, that this memory is a keeper.

* This story has been pieced together from yesterday's actual adventurous exploit of Boy and Hubby. Though I was not present to witness said adventure, I have shared with you, my friends, the story as I picture it based on the stories all present were eager to share upon their arrival home.