Friday, February 29, 2008

Getting going

I'm having a hard time of it today.

Actually it started last night... I had to keep reminding myself that it was THURSDAY and yes indeed I did have one more day to go.

So this morning I was only sort of shocked when the alarm went off. And then this is what I had to leave behind when I came to work:

Seriously?? I could eat her up. It's not many girls, you know, who can pull off a sparkly pink boa with grizzly bear jammies. I'm just saying.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

A million little kisses

Home today with the girl, who shared her cold with me last week and has now added pink eye to the mix. Magical.

I am mildly stressed about missing work... I don't want to lose the vacation day but this is motherhood and those are the sacrifices, right? I have been picking away at some work projects at home and plan to do some more after she goes to bed, so technically (I think) I can consider this a work day. It just feels weird.

Ah, work. It is ramping up. Each morning I walk in and wonder how on Earth I'm going to stay busy all day but I most definitely do. I've spent the last 6-7 years with a caseload, which ought to say it all. Now, no real caseload (except for the 1-2 mornings a week that I still do clinical work) but definitely a load. And a steep learning curve. And a lot of room for change which may or may not make me popular. I wish dad was here for some insight. I'd probably be annoyed by his unsolicited advice but the truth is I always wanted to hear it. Not that I always followed it, but I always wanted to hear it.

Dad. It will be a year this Sunday. The weather was very much like this, sans the sunshine. It seems like a lifetime ago. A lot has changed.

The home renovation project continues and I'm TOTALLY excited about this Friday, when we sit down and talk about the fun stuff with the architect. So many dreams tumbling around in this pea brain of mine and I can't wait to see them on paper. Is this actually going to happen? (Yes.)

I've rethought things and decided I want my craft room/studio in the attic. And I want it to feel like an attic -- a fully loaded, completely functional, super-cozy attic to be sure, but still an attic. The Mack Daddy of attics. I want to be able to curl up by one of the windows and read and maybe fall asleep. I want to put my Mom's Christmas formal on a dress form and make it the piece of art that I think it really might be. I want it to be my grown-up girl-fort. And I want it to be the place where I can sew, scrap, and craft my brains out. You too, if you want to come on up. There will be lots of room so come on over anytime.

And I might call it a studio. But I'll probably call it the attic. We'll see.

Our little bouncing bear continues to be the best thing that happened to either of us. She exhausts me and scares me and really pisses me off sometimes but she's fantastic and I really, truly know how blessed we are to have her. She is strong and healthy and smart and sweet and beautiful and I don't forget for a minute how lucky we were to hit the jackpot when she joined our little family.

I see her starting to push boundaries. This scares me (because I realize this is going to go on -- and escalate -- for years and years to come), but right now it's still pretty endearing. She does for things she knows she shouldn't and when you call her name she turns to you with this "What? Me? I'm sorry, was I not supposed to do that?" look on her face. It's cute the first 2-3 times. And she's also started the stalling game at nap/bedtime. My most favorite rendition is something I call "a million little kisses," because she kisses me everywhere: my cheeks, my chin, my neck, my ears, my eyes, my forehead, over & over & over. They're just these sweet, tiny, soft little kisses and they make me melt. I'm sure she knows it, and I'm sure she's working it. But I fall for it everytime.

Maybe Sara calls this game "Mama is a Sucker."

Sounds about right.

Friday, February 15, 2008

Blog surfing

I could explain how I wound up here, but why?

I love this woman. I think she is cute as a button, funny, and has mad crafting skills. Plus, she lives in Oregon. Hello! The Tillamook yogurt alone is almost enough to get me to move there...

Anyway. Is it weird to read the blog of a perfect stranger? Hmmmm. I'm wondering if I care...

No, no I don't.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

So, Dad called today

OK, not really. But I think maybe he was on the line for a second.

I played a short round of phone tag with my brother today. He called the house, Rob couldn't get the phone. I called his cell, he didn't answer. About 30 seconds later the phone rings, and the caller ID says CJ's cell.

So, I answer it: "Hey."

And then, from the great beyond or above or his condo at Washington Park, I don't really know where, but I swear my dad answered me: "Yeah?"

I stopped cold. I actually had my mouth poised to say "Dad??" I think I actually did say "d." Then I snapped back to reality, realized it really couldn't be him, and remembered what the caller ID said.

CJ's cell.

I think it was a bunch of things: The creaky voice that sounded just like Dad's did at the end; the weather (I sat and watched weather like this for hours -- no, days -- when Dad was finally confined to bed); the growing similarities between my father & brother; the fact that 12 more days will mark one year since he died. And it's not like this is the first time something like this has happened... Rob tells me that there was one night, a few months afer Dad died, when he got home late from work & tripped coming up the stairs and I yelled out "Dad" in my sleep. (Middle of the night falls were quite common those last few months.) And I can't count how many mornings I've woken up, far too early, thinking that I needed to go make sure Dad is OK.

I don't know. I don't necessarily like it when these things happen. It really freaks me out for a minute, as you might imagine. But then there's that flash, that half a second, when it feels like he's still here. And that's not so bad, you know?

Still miss you Dad. Say hi to Mom for us, will you? (We miss her, too.)

Oh, and for the record... If I ever go to answer the phone and it says Dad's condo, I am SO not answering it.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Living the dream

I have this vivid memory: It was maybe six or seven years ago. Rob and I were dating but still a year or so away from getting engaged. It was a very cold, dark, post-Christmas morning and I was driving into work (a job I didn't espeically like)listening to Christmas carols on the radio, totally bitter about my career and completely resigned to my lot in life -- never married, no kids. I made peace with my fate on Fall Creek Parkway somewhere between Capitol and Senate.

It was not a good morning.

Fast forward to yesterday: It's a cold but sunny Saturday afternoon. My husband is at home and I've got my sweet girl in the minivan with me. We're on our way to the happiest places on Earth -- no, not Disney, but DSW, Memoiors, and Target. I've got XM Kids playing (an oh-so-welcome reprieve from Elmo, let me tell you) and Sara is be-bopping in the back seat, asking for "moh moo-gick?" when a commercial comes on.

I could not be happier.

The highlight of my day came when we were listening to Roger Day sing "Dream Big!" For those of you who aren't familiar with this preschool anthem, the chorus goes something like "you've got to sing loud, jump high, and dream big!"

And then Sara, without dropping a beat adds "and BOUNCE!"

Love. Love, love, love, love, love.

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Richard tagged me...

... and now I feel all fluttery inside.

(Richard, for the record, is my most platonic of crushes. He and his wife are two of the best people I know -- they are smart and funny and make me think WAY outside my box, and I love them for it. But Richard? Well, he calls me "darlin" sometimes and I just go all weak in the knees. That Amy is one lucky girl!)

Anyway, he tagged me. Blog tag 123, to be exact.

I guess the game goes like this (and I lift this directly from his blog):

Pick up the nearest book of 123 pages or more
Find page 123
Find the first five sentences
Post the next three sentences
Tag five people

So, the nearest book for me is "Raising You Spirited Child" by Mary Sheedy Kurcinka. Here's my lines:

"Duane listened quietly to the group and then asked, 'How can I tell my son I'm glad he's sensitive when it makes me flinch inside? I am embarrassed by my sensitivity and my son's too. When I grew up, boys didn't cry and I cried over everything."

There's more, but I'll just have to leave you hanging.

And for my five? Now that's tough. I guess I'll go with Amy, Lisa,
Scott, NKP, and Jeff.

Hopefully their bedside reading is a little more exciting than mine...