Thursday, September 28, 2006

The Pumpkin Heir

My kids are really too old for your basic Halloween celebrating. Oh, they have what they call "Halloween parties," which is just an excuse to have a party. They're all way too cool to dress up in costume. After all, that stuff like trick-or-treating and carving pumpkins is so imma...

Never mind.

Note: We know, we know. This is not technically a pumpkin. We kept telling that to Heir 2. We said, "That's not really a pumpkin. It's a gourd and you can't carve a gourd." Is it any wonder he never listens...

Notes 2: Yes, he has way too much time on his hands. I think he needs considerably more homework before he carves anything else that can't be carved.

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Just a quick note...

Zsa Zsa had been hogging the computer and now I'm behind on my real job. So everyone will have to be happy with that for now.

This is Miss Zsas this summer with a mouth full of crab -- literally.

Friday, September 22, 2006

Domestic Goddess -- of sorts

I’d forgotten how much I like this whole domestic thing.

Now, don’t be throwing stuff at me…I didn’t say all women should like this whole domestic thing or even that this whole domestic thing is what women are born to do. I’m just saying I like this whole domestic thing.

Granted, this is easy to say when you’ve got a brand new house to play in. And I had lost all sense of domesticity in The House of Squalor. Having to wait for low tide to do the laundry will do that to a person over time.

I’ve already written about how thrilled I am by the whole laundry situation/ice thing – and these continue to tickle me whenever I hear my washer play it’s little finish tune or I hear ice fall into the freezer.

But then there is my work room, miles and miles away from everyone. They have to think before committing to making the journey to my office and usually it’s easier to deal with whatever it was without me. So now that I’m not constantly on call, I get my work done a whole lot faster leaving me with time for the whole domestic thing.

You see: I’m such a girl.

I just am. I can’t help it. I like to sew and knit and cook. I like stuff to smell good. I think lace is pretty (though infestation is always a problem, so lace should be thinned regularly to prevent froth). I really do like to cook and get a certain satisfaction out of a state of cleanliness (although “too clean” is suspect. This is never a threat when you have dogs.).

I guess I come by this honestly. My mother liked the whole domestic thing. In her yearbook all her girlfriends put for their ambitions stuff like “nurse,” “teacher,” or “secretary” (what we now call “administrative assistant”). My mother put “homemaker.”

She was not among those women I keep hearing about who had to make it through the day on antidepressants. She really enjoyed her home, not only the chores of creating it, but also experiencing the fruits of all that work. It was very comforting to come home from school and walk in the door to a worn, but clean, house, smell dinner cooking and my mother on the couch, listening to an opera. That is security.

Then there is my Aunt Marie. Aunt Marie is a homemaker with style. She never flinches at throwing a dinner party. My best memory of Aunt Marie is of her, at 10 o’clock at night, still bustling around the kitchen laying out the last of a major feast and saying, “See? No trouble at all!” Everyone else is beached at the table, stuffed and sleepy.

Now there is me, with my domestic-loving guilt. I know, I know, there are women who fought long and hard to release me from being chained to the very thing I love. And I know there are women who will accuse me of “loving my abuser.” And there are even those who will bitterly point out that I just lucked up into an advantageous marriage that affords me the ability to work at home and let my focus be on domesticity.

I think the intent, though, was always there and led me right to where I wanted to be anyway. Even when it wasn’t foremost in my mind I must have subconsciously aimed myself toward where I’ve ended up.

When Heir 1 returned to public school after being homeschooled, his friends used to call him “The Beav” because his leaving for school looked eerily like the beginning credits to the show Leave It to Beaver. So I was required to stop packing his lunch and had to hide behind furniture until the bus went by so no one could see that I was up and seeing him off to school.

I don’t know if that story is funny or sad. Fortunately the bus stop is now down and hill and around a corner, so I don’t have to resort to guerilla parenting anymore.

And, in my defense, I don’t wear pearls around the house.

Friday, September 15, 2006

boring post with limited capitalization

I’ve simply got to move on from the previous post, but am currently to the point where I stash away column ideas like a greedy miser, in terror of the day I actually run out of things to talk about.

And so, for your viewing enjoyment, I bring you the view from our bird feeders and refer you to the appropriate Spot-on column because what I really need to be doing is going to the bank and grocery shopping because heir 2 has informed me that “There is nothing to eat in the house,” which means we’re out of Cocoa Puffs.

In addition, all of a sudden some of my capital letters don’t work (note the lack of a capital “h” on my son’s name and the fact that I just had to refer to him as “my son.”).

And so I will quit while I’m ahead.

Monday, September 11, 2006

Today and everyday

Dirtman began the day by turning on the television. And it began.

The 9/11 coverage and everyone trying so hard to capture the whole thing with words.

Words words words. Enough already with the words.

Because, thank God, there are no words that are going to recapture that day completely and, in a way, I’m glad such an experience is beyond speech. We assign words to that which we experience and more words to what we experience the most.

So I really just want everyone to shut up and stop speculating and blaming. All we seem to derive from all this is the adrenaline rush brought on by remembrance or anger at whomever. And I don’t know that this is a good legacy for those that died.

Is anything good going to come out of watching everybody’s version of that day? Not a minute of feeling bad about watching the planes hit the World Trade Center towers over and over again will undo those events.

It’s as though we’ve got a nationwide epidemic of survivor’s guilt. Were it any other issue or event, mental health specialists would be telling us to stop dwelling on it. But we keep picking at it and picking at it as though we aren’t happy unless it’s open and bleeding.

I doubt, given a gift one hour back on earth, if those that died that day would choose to talk to their loved ones about the specifics of their deaths.

So I’ve decided I’d keep my focus on the only positive thing that came out of that day, the realization that we must find a way to love each other, starting as individuals since you can only control you. I will make it my goal to release hatred and anger toward anyone, not just those only slightly tick me off .

That is all I will allow this day to remind me about.

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Project: Run-away!

All right already.

I watched the freakin’ show – twice – okay? I watched Project Runway as penance for having confused it with America’s Next Top Model and, thereby, offending the handful of people who both read my Spot-on thing and watch the show.

All I can say is: I want my two hours back.

For the record, I love to sew. I love fabric (you should see my fabric stash…), the color, constructing and planning and creating. I love doing all of it. I’d love to see some of the designers’ techniques and construction ideas. At least I’d be learning something.

But once again, we have a contrived situation manipulated to get the most dramatic reactions from the participants. Snore. The words “contrived” and “manipulated” are not what I would consider “reality.”

No matter how many times The Blonde I Assume Is Heidi Klum threatened to get rid of one of them by looking severe and pausing between each word she said (Oh! I get it! She was acting.); no matter how stark the spot lighting; no matter how dangerous the music tried to sound – it is, after all, only clothing. The “losers” are not being marched off to an electric chair. Their careers are not ruined. They fold up the garment and head home.

I know this kind of overkill is common among reality shows but I lost two hours out of my life to this one. I’m a little bitter.

But – I tell myself I’ve wasted time on other things. I have a phenomenal Spider Solitaire score and I can’t tell you how many Virginia Tech football games I’ve sat through.

And another thing: Who came up with the idea to mention Madonna and Cher in the same breath as Hepburn – either one? Giving yourself a one-word name doesn’t make you an icon, fashion or otherwise. It just makes you self-absorbed.


I watched it. But I have important things to do. Now everyone get off my back so I can return to Spider Solitaire in peace.

Friday, September 01, 2006

Pathetic excuses


I feel like I’ve been running a marathon for the entire summer. We were in limbo for so long with The House of Never-ending Construction, we’d neglected the Real World. And Linguini on the Ceiling.

We’ve been playing catch up and it’s been exhausting.

First there were all those dinners we promised to people “once we’re in the new house.” Not that anyone was keeping score (other than us), but we were kind of anxious to play with our new cooking stuff. Okay, I was anxious to play with my new cooking stuff, though look where that got me (gross photo alert)… (It’s much better, thank you JAG. I think scarring will be minimal, in spite of what the doctor warned me about).

(As a side note: We need to schedule a Second Bloggers Convention West or something or we will all descend into social atrophy. Okay – I will descend into social atrophy. Besides, I have White Trasherati’s birthday present and I’m not mailing it because I don’t do packages because that requires social interaction with a postal employee and my family doesn’t do package mailings because if you have to mail a package that means the person isn’t as important to you otherwise you’d make it a point to give it to them in person at some contrived event like, say, a Bloggers’ Convention West. The Bros have threatened to infiltrate the next one in view of the fact that JAG is afraid of them. This means that John Boy will, therefore, be afraid of her and Dark Garden will laugh at her for showing weakness. Welcome to the hell that is my family.)

And then there is good ol’ Spot-On which, I’m afraid, gets all my best ideas, even when those ideas fall flat because I dis’ed a show I’d never seen. (Don’t ever do that, by the way. People are very protective about their favorite shows.)

And then there is Fair Week. If you live in a rural area, you know that during county fair week, all things other than the fair come to a screeching halt. Me, I work a church food stand during fair week. I leave early, come home late, scrape the grease from my skin, shower and go to bed. I don’t even venture to my office, which is a long, long walk from the rest of the house, to write, let alone read, blogs.

School starts next week, which means the county takes over shuttling Heir 2 back and forth into town at ridiculous times. There’s 18 hours a day right there.

I hope that means I can be back in contact with everyone and that suddenly a flood of writing ideas will flow through my brain.

At least I’ll save on gas.