Archive for June, 2008

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Bump

June 28, 2008

Life will throw you curve balls and you’ll hit bumps in the road. It seems as if I’ve been experiencing nothing but bumps since Tuesday. Finally today it’s smoothing out. Thank Elvis.

One of the bumps was the pool. We worked for 12 hours getting the land ready and it’s still not done. I’m thinking tomorrow will be the golden day. There’s probably only another hour or two of digging and moving earth, probably 20 minutes or so of tamping it down, and then the pool set up itself followed by the 3 or 4 hours to fill it. By the time we’re done, B and I are just going to grow fins and gills. Hell, he’s halfway there – he’s a Pisces.

Thursday night, some driving genius nearly ran me off the road which resulted in me choosing between 1) having a sideswiping collision with a vehicle and nearly killing myself and said genius or, 2) veering off the side of the road and colliding with the curb. Not really wanting to die before seeing Willie again (less than a month!) I chose option 2. Option 2 did not kill me but absolutely killed our budget as it resulted in 1 flat tire, 1 exploded tire (yes, I mean exploded,) and two rims bent beyond repair. I could have died anyway! It’s a freaking miracle I didn’t flip the van. And of course no place has those rims, so they had to be ordered from a salvage yard. The mechanic says it should be done by Tuesday. How awesome is that? 😡

I promised B that I would make spanikopita for dinner tonight. He’s been feeling really really ill lately and could use all the iron (spinach) he can get. Of course, I realize an hour ago that I’m completely out of garlic. I need 5 cloves. And, of course, B has the only working vehicle – at my suggestion this morning. Guess we’ll be holding off on the Greek feast. Dammit.

But it’s not all be horrible and we all have those temporary What-The-Fuck-Is-Happening moments. It’s getting better. Today is darn near lovely. I just wish that, on the Road of Life, I was equipped with better suspension.

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Phyllis

June 24, 2008

My maternal grandmother died at 10:00 this morning.  Her sister and her daughter (my mother,) were there with her.  She went to sleep and died.  Such a peaceful death after such devastatingly slow and torturous decline.

Phyllis hasn’t been a part of my life for years as per my choice.   Many folks don’t understand that choice – that’s fine.  They don’t have to – it wasn’t their decision. We all have to do what we have to do.  It’s sad, indeed, that it wasn’t different, but it is what it is, nothing more and nothing less.

Even though I had removed myself from her, she was still my grandmother.  My last living grandparent.  Most importantly, however, she was my Mom’s mother – her last living parent.  I am heartbroken to think of the pain my Mom is feeling.  I am grieving the loss of my grandmother and that the chasm between us was never bridged.  I can feel the energy of the world shift as a living member has just left.

Goodbye, Phyllis.  Rest in Peace.

For everything there is a season,
And a time for every matter under heaven:
A time to be born, and a time to die;
A time to plant, and a time to pluck up what is planted;
A time to kill, and a time to heal;
A time to break down, and a time to build up;
A time to weep, and a time to laugh;
A time to mourn, and a time to dance;
A time to throw away stones, and a time to gather stones together;
A time to embrace, And a time to refrain from embracing;
A time to seek, and a time to lose;
A time to keep, and a time to throw away;
A time to tear, and a time to sew;
A time to keep silence, and a time to speak;
A time to love, and a time to hate,
A time for war, and a time for peace.

Ecclesiastes 3:1-8

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Promises Promises

June 23, 2008

Call me a bitch.  Call me a whore. Call me a boozer, an addict, a cheat, a liar.  At one point in time, you’d have been right on all accounts. There are days that I embody one or more of those traits even still. What you cannot call me and have never been able to call me, however,  is a promise breaker.  It doesn’t happen.  It never has.  It never will.  If I promise something, it will be done.

Today I promised to do something for someone I love very much. It will be the hardest promise I’ve ever had to keep, and at the same time, it will also be the most important promise I’ve ever kept.

I’m not sure what to do about all of that other than to do what I’ve always done — feel confident in what I promise and promise that with which I’m comfortable.

Sometimes I long for the days of promising to not get your 4th grade girlfriend’s “boyfriend” out in 4-square.  Ahhhhhhhh, guess it’s true: you cannot go home again.

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How the garden grows …

June 20, 2008

dog

Yeah, I didn’t plant anything this year other than optimism, hope, peace, and Zen. Lots and lots of Zen. But that’s why I’ve been busy and not writing so much … my garden is growing.

Not that my current song choice fits the bill … You’re So Vain by Carly Simon. Eh well, whatever. Moving on …

First and foremost — I have lots of friends who are dealing with some serious flooding. I get email or phone updates nearly daily on what is going on just slightly East of me. Man, ya’ll, I’m thinking of you, I’m feeling you. I’ve lived through 2 really fierce floods, one more insane than the other, and lemme tell you … it was gnarly. My boyfriend at the time lost his house. I remember being on the phone with him as the water rose up from his floor grates. I remember spending months cleaning up, renovating. I remember being pissed off at FEMA even then. I was 17 that summer – one of the most pivotal summers of my life – and I’ll never forget driving through the river that had made it waayyyyyyyyyyy past it’s banks and listening to Led Zeppelin’s When the Levee Breaks with a middle finger up on one hand a joint in the other. Let me tell you — there are much much much worse ways to cope. So to all you folks who are sand baggin’ and moving to higher ground, I hear you and this one’s for you …

Moving on…

My birthday was back in April — months ago — and just today I finally got my real present. Yep, today my gym membership became official. Now, don’t get me wrong … I’ve been going the the gym religiously since the middle of May. Just happens that, as always, B and i happen to know the right people (how in the hell does that always happen???? Okay .. don’t question it, I know I know I know,) and I’ve been going for free on a “Guest Pass” for over a month. In fact, the first time I went, they already knew who I was, expected my arrival, and have greeted me by name each and every time I walk through the doors. Having said that, however, I have known that I was getting a freebie and felt guilty as all hell. I have spoken many times about paying them retroactively only to be shunned and laughed out of the office. Okay fine. BUT, my friends, today I have the official membership card. Today it’s real. Today I can stop mooching. WOOT! Know what that means? GUEST PASS, baby!!! Yep, DDFF, get thyself ready, Ma’am. We’re gonna bang some shit out. When is good for you?

Even better gym news — I’ve been going to the south location (miles and miles from my house) ’cause it’s where the guest membership was given and I’ve fallen in love with that place. I adore it. But sometimes I get frustrated because it’s such a haul to get myself there. I learned today, however, that they are building a super duper fancayyyyyy location closer to me … and the membership transfers! Yeah, baby!

We bought a pool yesterday. Nothing terribly fancy, of course, but large enough and deep enough for me to float quite happily on a pool lounger with a drink in my hand, deep enough to work on my abs using water resistance, and fun enough to get my kids outta the house during the long hot days that await us. We set it up Sunday and it’s gonna require a lot of work. We have a HUGE backyard, but not a square meter of it is level. Say a prayer and send bourbon. JP, DDFF, JFL, HGP, Hope, Stacie: come on over. You provide beverage, I provide pool. Deal?

Stealth is a ninja. Duck is a NOnja. Ask them about the difference – it will enrich your life.

There was so much more I wanted to write about, but the backyard is calling me. I don’t know how to be inside during the summer. If you have any ideas, let me know. Until then, bottoms up, eat a burger for me, don’t forget the corn on the cob, and put extra ice in my lemonade. Summer is too short to be stingy!

PS — there’s a new page up there that will change FREQUENTLY. Grab your inner Richard Dawson and participate!

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Hey Hey It’s VJ’s Day!!!

June 13, 2008

Happy Birthday my dear sweet sister Velma!  30 is amazing!  Congratulations for making it this far — it only gets better and better from here.

Time and Tide wait for no man,
but time always stands still for a woman of thirty.
Robert Frost

Everyone hop on over to Velma’s site and wish her a VERY HAPPY 30th BIRTHDAY!

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What matters?

June 12, 2008

dog

Yep, Joy.  That’s what matters.  It’s so attainable, too!  Really, it is.  Just look for it and you’ll find it everywhere.  Don’t look for money.  Don’t look for prestige.  Don’t look for things.  Look for joy – you cannot help but fall in a big ol’ pile of it.

Lately I’ve been finding joy in simple things and it’s made all the difference.

Hank needs a lot of exercise.  LOTS of exercise.  Sometimes it’s a pain to think about how many miles he needs to walk a day or to deal with the constant tennis ball in my face, but if I look, I can find such joy in these basic activities.  I wake each morning, grab a cup of coffee, and head out to the deck with Hank.  I sit on the steps and listen to the birds singing and smell the cool early morning air.  I sip my coffee and play endless rounds of Fetch with him.  He gets his morning exercise, I get a morning meditation.   I recently got Hank a doggy backpack.  I know I know, it sounds absurdly like I’m buying him clothes, but I’m really not buying clothes, I’m buying tools.  Hank needs a job. He needs to intensify his challenges.  He needs to work out like I do.  When we go on a walk (usually 3 – 4 miles a day or so,) I strap his backpack on him and load him up with water bottles and a bowl.  I listen to audio books on my iPod while walking.  It’s so wonderful to feel my energy completely mesh with Hank’s.  We walk.  We stop.  We run.  We amble.  We climb.  We breathe.  We stop and have a little drink.  We come home tired, worked out, and joyful.

It’s hot outside.  Really hot.  As a result, the boys have been wearing less and less clothes.  They are turning into little clones of their father – a man who wears shirts outside of work maybe 4 months of the year.  I’m so entertained watching them mimic B.  I love to look at them playing and really notice their knobby knees, their spindly arms.  I feel such sentimentality about their hairless armpits.  What a wonderful job I have – watching infants grow into babies, babies grow into toddlers, toddlers grow into children, children grow into adults!

I’ve gotten back into reading fiction – how can that be anything but joyful?

It’s summer which means that my best girlfriend is off work.  I love my friendship with JP.  It’s not without it’s issues – what friendship that has lasted a decade hasn’t had a bump or two in the road?  For the most part, however, it’s easy.  It’s comforting.  It’s funny and stimulating and outrageous and constant and entertaining as all hell.  Next week we hit a local (man-made) beach with the kids.  They’ll swim, we’ll talk.  It’s free, it’s fun, it’s delightful.

Even in everyday tasks, there is joy to be found.  I love my fabric softener.  I love doing laundry and smelling it.  I love my dishwashing stuff – it makes doing the dishes so much easier when I love the way they feel and smell.  Housework becomes a fun game of pretend when we take on the personalities of Kim and Aggie.

Today I’m hunting for joy at the library, the gym, the kitchen.  I’m sure I’ll find it in each of those places and also in several places unexpected.  I cannot wait to start the adventure.

Where do you find joy?

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Happy Birthday Duck!

June 3, 2008

8 years ago today, my gorgeous lively boy entered the world with a lusty cry, a black eye, and a mission to change the world. My life has never been the same. I love you, Duck. I adore you. You are my partner, my tutor, my muse, my Karma, my barometer, my child, my future, my heart. Happy Birthday!!

“1) A boy is a
magical creature you can lock him out of your workshop, but you can’t
lock him out of your heart. You can get him out of your study, but you
can’t get him out of your mind. Might as well give up he is your
captor, your jailer, your boss and your master a freckled-faced,
pint-sized, cat-chasing bundle of noise. But when you come home at
night with only the shattered pieces of your hopes and dreams, he can
mend them like new with two magic words Hi, Dad!

2)Boys are found everywhere — on top of, underneath, inside of,
climbing on, swinging from, running around or jumping to. Mothers love
them, little girls hate them, older sisters and brothers tolerate them,
adults ignore them and Heaven protects them. A boy is Truth with dirt
on its face, Beauty with a cut on its finger, Wisdom with bubble gum in
its hair and the Hope of the future with a frog in its pocket.”

Author: Alan Marshall Beck