Friday, November 30, 2007
This morning my daughter ate a fistfull of yellow sheet cake for breakfast...which she grabbed herself from the top of our garbage pail. (Not my proudest moment as a mother, as I reached down to take the cake from her clenched little fist and ask her where it came from and she raced indignantly to the trash and pointed and yelled "Look! Look! Look!" - like it was my fault for tempting her with sweet sweet garbage to begin with.)

We went to my high school reunion last weekend. Meh. It was as I had suspected - small and strange, seeing people from the fringes of my past (none of the people I would have considered myself to be "close" with during high school attended...) There wasn't much for conversation, mostly people drank and we all stood around waiting for it to be over. But it was a childless night out with my husband, which is always a treat.

The Elm (Eureka Literary Magazine) has accepted a story of mine for their upcoming issue.

My son is a vocabulary machine lately - which is excellent (especially considering that we were concerned he was practicing to be a mime only a year ago at this time, when he outright refused to speak.)

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Wednesday, November 28, 2007
The scene: It's evening at the front desk of the hotel where I'm spending most of my nights as of late. The crotchety woman who serves our nightly social is looking up the weather channel at our front desk computers and telling me about the temperature in Montana. (20 degrees for a high)

She turns to me and says, "you look pale."

I nod and shrug. Not the first time I'd noticed that myself.

"No, really," she insists.

"Yeah. I'm kind of pale."

"What, you getting your period or something?"

"No, Crotchety Woman," I assure her, "I'm actually just very pale. Worse in the winter."

"Oh," she says and turns back to the monitor, back to the gray skies and cold air of Montana. "Pale face."

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Thursday, November 22, 2007

Us, originally uploaded by Mella.
Hope you all have (pleasantly) full bellies and hearts bursting at the seams.
Happy Thanksgiving!


Monday, November 19, 2007
One of Those
Ever have one of those days when you decide to take a quick break from the office to deposit a check, and then stop at the grocery store to grab a Powerbar for lunch, but then realize while standing at the checkout counter that your debit card isn't where it's supposed to be? And so you empty the contents of your purse (empty tubes of chaps stick, a cellophane wrapped package of smarties, the name badge and hideous scarf you wear for your other job, cracker crumbs, some now-defunct insurance cards and a handful of post-it notes, grocery store and receipts, etc) - then your pockets (two pennies and the newest ATM receipt) only to realize that your debit card is absolutely not on your person?

So, you tell the cashier that you'll be right back - only your card isn't sitting nicely on the leather passenger seat of your car. Nor is it visible in the ATM parking lot or in through the ATM vestibule's windows.

And so then you drive back to your office to call the bank to cancel the card, and then realize that you can go and pick up a temporary card at a local branch. So you leave work again, and trek to the nearest branch of your bank (located almost directly across the street from the grocery store you almost bought a Powerbar from.)

In a matter of minutes (ok, twenty, at least) you're back in your car, salivating for that stupid Powerbar (as it is now officially lunch time and you've eaten nothing since waking up this morning) - and then as you're just about to pull away from the parking lot, the nice man from the bank is flagging your car down like it's an emergency. And it is, sort of. You realize as you approach him that he's handing you something - your drivers license - which you had forgotten on his desk.

Ever have one of those days?


Me too.


Thursday, November 15, 2007
What Happened
It's been a month now since I was here - children napping, typing away on the computer, juggling a game or two of scrabbulous between paragraphs - and then the phone rang, it was my husband, but he only gave me three words. Three words before hanging up, before I was on the floor, on my knees. Pray for me.

I prayed until I was reduced to repeating myself over and over like a skipping record. I paced around the house. I peeked in on my children. I called my mother. We prayed. She began pacing. The Boss began stirring and so I hung up the phone and smoothed my nerves and went to hug him and ask him what he'd like for lunch. Crustless sandwich? Ravioli? Something normal. Something to suggest that this was an ordinary day. That his father always calls to ask for prayer and then hangs up.

And so we left the bedroom together, The Boss and I, and walked into the kitchen and there was my husband in the living room. At lunchtime on a Monday. My husband with red-rimmed eyes and a look of disbelief. My husband, fired.

It's strange, how life can spin you around like that, shaking loose everything you'd held onto as secure. Strange how life can decide it's time for a change long before you're ready. Not that there's ever a time when a young family is prepared to have their provider stop, um, providing.

So, this past month I've had to accept that my part-time job(s) are now "official" jobs. That although neither of the jobs I have do anything more than pay (a few of the many) bills. Neither are things I would put on my resume. Neither are steps in my "career" - yet I'm trapped. Forty hours a week spent doing jobs that high school kids do during the summer, working for fresh-out-of-college supervisor's who are six years my junior.

Don't misread me. I am grateful that we already had something in place when this happened. That I only needed to up my hours, not find a job altogether. I'm grateful that my bosses do pay me better than the average employee. And I'm especially grateful that this whirlwind of stress didn't touch ground until after I finished grad school. For all of these things I am grateful. And for the work that I trust God is doing in all of this situation, I am grateful. I'm thanking him in advance for how He is going to use this as a force of good in my husband's life and career.

But yes, I'm stressed and tired and snippy and miserable whenever I have to leave my kids. And after only a few weeks of this, I can safely say that I'll be more than ready to relinquish the title of breadwinner to my husband whenever he is able to assume it.

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Thursday, November 08, 2007

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Thursday, November 01, 2007
Happy Birthday
Oh how things change in a year.
It dawned on me recently how much less time I spend chronicling my daughter's life than I did with The Boss. It's a phenomena that I associated with lazy parents prior to having my own second child, the syndrome of having boxes and boxes of nostalgia from their first child's first few years - and then nearly nothing for the second. Yet, here I am. Even in the blogosphere, I haven't given her the focus that I gave her brother.
I don't feel guilty, it's really just more the acceptance that life does get in the way. And that working two jobs and taking care of kids/house/husband and trying to somehow construct a worthwhile writing life, it all sort of leaves you a bit lacking - not as much time to time to sit back and ponder things.
For my son's first birthday, I ran a countdown here of now and then, a timeline showing how we'd grown and changed, how life had spun us and where we'd wound up. For Lila, there is only this. A happy family, albiet in the midst of a whirlwind, still waiting to see where we'll wind up. And perhaps then there will be more of a chance for retrospection and creative expression.
But in the meantime, I'm going to take my beautiful birthday girl out for a birthday ice cream. And enjoy the moment while I'm in it.

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