Monday, December 22, 2008

it seemed like a love song

I may have already mentioned this in a previous post, but neither Dave nor I are romantic. In response to my concern for his comfort the other day, he responded, "We have been married so freakin' long - if I'm uncomfortable, it's my own fault." It seemed like a love song to me.

Monday, December 15, 2008

christmas card

in lieu of an actual christmas card, this is our family update for the year. enjoy.
Posted by Picasa

Sunday, December 7, 2008

water mellon recipe

Every few years my kids find my scrapbook and look through the scraps of my life. My favorite scrap from all 39 years is a cookbook written by my Kindergarten class. The fact that it's in its original state, typed on a typewriter with purple ink, makes it pretty great. But add to that the names of the kids I knew all my life and recipes for things like "Pickle" and "Toast" and it might be the most valuable thing I own.

Here is my favorite recipe from the book:

Water Mellon

1 t. sugar
2 t. oil
1 t. powder
7 black seeds

Mix it up in a bowl. Let it get cool in the refrigerator. That's all.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

what it should be

As much as I hate to admit it, Thanksgiving is not usually my thing. I tend to spend more time on dinner menus, shopping lists and travel plans than I do giving thanks. But this year is different. Thanksgiving, this year, is what it should be: a daily appreciation for the people who make my life rich, a resounding knowledge that all I have is a gift, and a deeper understanding of the well-worn phrase, "There, but for the grace of God, go I."

Sunday, November 23, 2008

during church service

There are some things you really shouldn't do during church service. Scratching a parent's scalp with both hands is definitely one of them...

Monday, November 17, 2008

sounds like a super hero

Last night I went in to say goodnight to Max. As a pleasant surprise, I didn't step on or kick a single thing on my way across the 4 feet to his bed. I mentioned this to Max and he said, "Yeah, Dad helped me clean my room. He hung up my clothes while I talked about school. We worked some some stuff out."

Despite the fact that Max did little to help clean his own room, this story makes me happy. Imagine a dad who has time to tuck in a boy, hang up his clothes and solve his social problems all in one night. Sounds like a super hero to me!

Sunday, November 9, 2008

makes a mother proud

Abby hit 12 a few months ago and seems to have grown up over night. She is smart, talented, beautiful, and although she experiences the usual ups and downs of junior high life, she makes a mother proud. As she rushes from one activity to another, diligently managing her time, I watch in admiration and wonder if she still belongs to me at all. She's come a long way from the halo-haired girl clinging to bunny and bottle...

Thursday, November 6, 2008

socialized healthcare please

My husband recently changed jobs to take advantage of a great opportunity, but because it is a start-up company he is working as a contractor. The company offered to compensate him for the cost of our health insurance, but there is no group policy available. We worked with an agent to get quotes for individual health insurance and, like responsible citizens, filled out an application well in advance of our previous policy expiring. We figured it would cost us about four to five hundred dollars per month.

Unfortunately, if you have any health problems, no matter how slight, you are not eligible for individual health insurance. Somewhat ironic I think, but there it is. Because he takes a monthly medication and sees the doctor quarterly, my husband was denied coverage. We can get coverage for our children (they only go to the doctor once a year) and possibly for me (although they do have some questions about the appendectomy I had 7 years ago - is it possible I have another bad appendix?) but I am fed up with paying insurance premiums for people who never use the insurance. Mathematically, it just doesn't make sense...

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

payson perks

People often give me a hard time for living in Payson. "It's so far" they say, "how can you stand to drive so far?" "Payson?!" But when I stopped off to vote on my way home from work today, I walked in, gave them my card, selected one of 5 open voting boxes (computerated, btw, not chisel and stone) and was out the door 5 minutes later. I also saw two people I knew in the parking lot. Sometimes small towns can't be beat!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

the perfect pumpkin plan

Every year we carve pumpkins. When my kids were little, I made a big deal out of it. I wanted them to truly love it. We talked about it for weeks ahead and took long, involved trips to the pumpkin patch. Once there, I would gently advise (read obsessively control) the pumpkin choices of my children to ensure a good variety of shapes and sizes within our allotted budget.

At home we would struggle with the kids to help them understand the scientific truths about pumpkin carving. (There are always icky pumpkin guts in the middle of the pumpkin and you can't cut out everything around the eyes and expect them to magically float in the middle.) Some years we had arguments and tears over who got to carve the biggest or extra pumpkins. It usually turned out to be more work than it was worth.

But this year, I implemented the perfect pumpkin plan. I sent Dave to get them. He came home with one for each of us, all of them large and desirable. I didn't have to think about it one little bit ... and even better: I can hear Abby getting the table and pumpkins ready as I write. Life is good!

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

bon appetit!

Until you have cracked over a hundred eggs and shaped several hundred cookies by hand in one day, you may not understand the term "scratch bakery." Now that I have done this, I say to you all, eat at Flour Girls and Dough Boys! Hand-crafted, whole food ingredients and still less expensive than many chains. There may be a wait, but it is definitely worth it.

My recommendations: all the cookies, all the breads, the mint brownies, the lemon bars, the cakes, soups and sandwiches...and the pastries. All fresh and divine. Bon appetit!

Monday, October 20, 2008

true max fashion

While working on the kids' Halloween costumes tonight and reminiscing about Halloweens past, we remembered the first year Max was old enough to talk at Halloween. He was so cute dressed as a little tiger (or maybe it was a fireman...or Thomas the Train). Anyway, he was so cute and everyone was excited to talk to him and give him candy. But, in true Max fashion, he wanted nothing to do with these people. With a look that reminds me exactly of my dad, he would look up at them as if they were completely insane and say, "No thanks, I have candy at home."

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

without abrupt change

My brother has a friend who says everyone who wants a driver's license should be required to take marching band so they can learn how to merge. I whole-heartedly agree! I spent an extra 30 minutes driving home this afternoon due to a long line of stop-and-go traffic. I thought for sure I would ultimately find a huge pile-up or men working in the middle of all lanes.

But after the 30 minutes, I saw the true source of delay; a sign reading "right lane ends ahead." Ignoring the cars who were doing their best to stop me, I drove an additional mile or maybe more before I ultimately had to merge. And, despite the glares from the car behind me, I had no problem fitting in to the left lane when the right lane actually ended.

My question is this: why do some people interpret the meaning of "merge" to be "slow down to a crawl and move over as far in advance as possible." The true definition of merge is "to blend or come together without abrupt change." Maybe UDOT could print that on the sign instead.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

political hooey

Remember the old adage that says we should never talk politics with family and friends? I really miss that old adage! But, since people seem bent on sending me their political hooey, here is my response…

I am sickened by the state of our political system. I find the concept of dumping millions of dollars into slander ads and personal attacks despicable. I long for the days when presidential candidates reeled off empty promises and slogans of hope just to uplift the American people; when the media was either blissfully unaware of scandals and lies, or sufficiently bribed into silence. At least then people wanted to vote…

I also feel we spend too much time analyzing the faults of our candidates. After all, we have to have a president and there are very few people who could live up to our expectations. And if they could, would they really want to be our president? So let's keep the personal dysfunctions personal and move on to the issues and facts.

Alas! Facts are elusive in the political world. I see very little presented in a reasonable way, but am bombarded daily with emails and videos; sensationalized materials designed to excite fear and dread. With no references or credits, or educational purpose that I can see, I hold no stock in such stuff. Give me a long, involved, dreadfully boring, un-biased pamphlet instead!

Thursday, October 9, 2008

so tired, so young

People (usually strangers or people I've just met) often remark on how tired I look. They also say I look young; much too young to have a 12 year old daughter. I've always found this odd. I don't usually feel really tired. And how can I look so tired and so young at the same time? But I finally figured it out - I look tired because people think I am 28. Since I am actually 38, I must look as though I haven't slept in about ten years. While discussing this with a friend yesterday, she suggested I get a button that says, "I'm not tired, I'm just old!" I'm seriously considering it.

Sunday, October 5, 2008

shed a little light

In our tiny little house, is a tiny little family room down the steep stairs in the basement. With low ceilings and poor lighting, it has sufficed but never satisfied me. Aside from putting in new carpet and removing some gnarly wood paneling, we haven't done much with the room in the four years we have lived here. A few weeks ago (or was it months?) I finally got around to painting the rest of the walls and hung some bright and colorful curtains, but still the room lacked. Then today I brought in some lamps. I put them back in the corner and immediately the room felt better. We have sat in the lamp light all afternoon, tucked in, warm and tight. Max says it feels like we are modern pioneers, like we are more of a family. I guess it was high time to shed a little light...

Friday, October 3, 2008

a word

I am currently reading the book Eat, Pray, Love. It's okay; I don't love it, or eat it or pray for it either. But last night I read a passage that has been milling around in my head ever since. During an extended stay in Rome, the author finds that she loves the city but somehow feels she doesn't fit in. Her friend tells her this is because her "word" doesn't match the city's "word." They then discuss how every city and person has a "word" that sums up their overall mindset or attitude. After thinking about this for a few minutes, I decided my word is "worry." I'm not proud of that, but there it is. Even my husband agrees. We haven't figured out yet what his word is, but I'm sure he has one. I really like this concept. It makes me want to figure out more words. Like the word for Payson, or Utah. Any ideas?

Saturday, September 27, 2008

sense of satisfaction

In an effort to conserve water last year, Dave decided to pull up the grass in the little strip of space between the sidewalk and the curb in front of our house. We originally planned to put bricks in the space, but summer turned to fall, fall came quickly to a close and we filled the space "temporarily" with a portion of the big pile of pea gravel we had left over from a previous project. (In case you are wondering, 5 yards of pea gravel is probably more than you can actually imagine.) The pea gravel looked slightly less than okay in the space, but with winter around the corner, we decided it was a better choice than mud and vowed to put some pavers in first thing in the spring.

To make a long story short, we finally finished our pavers today! It took several more hours than I had hoped, my shoulders are sagging from lifting 200 pavers (some of them more than once) and thanks to the heat of a Utah September, I sunburned my face and neck. And yet, I have a sense of satisfaction I haven't felt in awhile. To completely finish a project is a beautiful thing!

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

the trees are in the ground

I was waiting to write about my newly planted trees until I had photos of them, but in truth, my husband is an amazing photographer so I rarely pick up a camera.
You will have to take my word that we successfully researched, purchased, waited for digging approval, and planted three trees last week in honor of my dad and brothers.
We now have a beautiful Yellow Poplar (aka Tulip Tree) in our backyard and two fruit trees, an Asian Pear and a Peach, planted in the "orchard" area.
I am very excited to watch them grow and am grateful to my loving husband who, in more truth, did all the digging and planting. Thanks again to my in-laws for this beautiful gift!

Sunday, September 21, 2008

sunday morning

Nothing beats a Sunday morning with no pre-church meetings.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Culture Shock

Last winter I sold my soul to the devil and took a job in the corporate world. Having mostly worked in nonprofit since graduating from college, it has been a shock to my system. I regularly disagree with the business decisions made by the company and whine about needing more positive feedback for my team. Things that were once my strengths (openly sharing the information available to me with others, speaking candidly about how I feel on issues, advocating the rights of people) have now become my weakness. It has been nice to have the extra income, but I really have to wonder if I will ever adapt. Can a person truly adapt to a foreign culture, or will they always feel a little bit homesick?

Thursday, September 11, 2008

remain unaware

Yesterday I was stopped at a light and noticed a child in the next lane over. She was sitting directly behind the driver's seat and was pulling at the mother's hair with her toes. The mother seemed not to notice, which made me wonder what has gone on in my own back seat all these years.

Perhaps it is best to remain unaware.

Monday, September 8, 2008

only one aunt

For a variety of reasons, my husband and I only have two kids. Having both grown up in big families, we occasionally think it would be nice to have a bigger family, but usually on holidays. (It turns out that Christmas just isn't the same with 4 people and neither is Thanksgiving.) For the most part though we live by the slogan, "one for each hand, one for each parent" and consider ourselves lucky to have two great kids. But the other day Max asked me if his cousins would be the aunts and uncles of his future children. I said, "No, only Abby will be your kids' aunt." I then attempted to explain that whomever he marries may also have siblings, but I don't think he heard me due to his complete and total dismay at this news. He just kept repeating over and over, "My kids will only have one aunt; that's so sad! that's so sad!!" Since we often ask our kids if they wish we had more kids in our family, and Max's answer is always a resounding, "NO!" I attribute his disappointment to the greatness of his many aunts and uncles. Unfortunately, there is no chance of more siblings for Max, but maybe the cat will live a long time...

Saturday, September 6, 2008

spread through the sky

In lieu of sending flowers when my brother passed away, my husband's family sent money for me to buy a tree in his honor. I was touched by the gesture at the time, but as the weeks have passed, I have had more time to think about the meaning behind this beautiful gift. The idea of planting a tree in honor of someone I have lost gives me hope beyond what I had originally imagined. I look forward to planting the roots in the soil and watching the branches spread through the sky, linking heaven and earth. I was so moved while choosing Phil's tree that I bought one in honor of my dad and my brother Mark too. I am planning to bury some of my sadness along with those roots.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

grossly underestimated

I firmly believe that the social, emotional and mental benefits of a good haircut are grossly underestimated in our society.

Monday, September 1, 2008

clouds on the mountains

I planned to plant a tree today, but a storm rolled in last night providing thunder and lightning and rain until well after noon. At first I was a little disappointed, I have been wanting to plant my tree for weeks, but before long I was baking cookies, snug in my home with the clouds on the mountains like a winter-time tuque.

Friday, August 29, 2008

the wheel keeps on turning

When my life gets too busy and I am struggling to keep up with things, I feel like my life is a merry-go-round, the old kind that took several kids to get it going. The faster you ran and the harder you pushed, the better the ride would be, providing you could run long enough and fast enough to make the leap and land on top of the wheel.

I've come to recognize this feeling and trust that it means I need to let a few things go. As soon as I do, I am able to make the leap and the ride is fine again. But for the past few weeks, I have felt like I am just getting started. I push and push and try to run, but the weight of the wheel is too much; I have no momentum.

I know I just have to keep pushing, taking one step at a time. With each push I will feel a little stronger, the momentum will build and soon I will be ready to leap again, but right now it seems so much nicer to just lay down on the wheel and stare up at the sky...

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

think, think, hope.

What you can't see in these photos of Abby and Max is that they are trying to slingshot a splat ball through a triangle shaped window of a giant tee-pee frame. Thus the looks of intense concentration (Max) and dubious hope (Abby).

*Giant tee-pee paid for and provided by Uncle Linds. Thanks!!!

*We ultimately held a contest to see who could launch the ball the farthest. Even without any practice, Dave was the king.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

kidney karz with a "k" and a "z"

As a rule, I try to avoid doing business with any company that deliberately misspells a word in its name. Businesses like "Kountry Kitchen" kind of make sense, as I can see they may be going for visual alliteration, although I've never actually heard of such a thing. But I have never understood the logic behind misspelling both words (Kountry Korner) or changing an s to a z (Kidney Karz) for no reason at all. Nevertheless, we had an old Volvo we needed to get rid of and decided to donate it to Kidney Karz last week. We chose this organization mostly because kidney disease seems to run in my family, but I was so impressed with their service. We were able to sign up online, fill out all the necessary forms and two business days later our Volvo was towed away without any trouble at all on our part. Quick, easy, painless and now we have donated 83 cents per dollar to a worthy cause and our driveway is open wide for skateboarding again. The moral of the story? Never judge a business by a misspelled word!

Monday, August 25, 2008

holy facebook!

I think I was the only one in the world not using Facebook before tonight. I had someone send me an invite this morning and thought, "okay, I have a few minutes." The next thing I knew, I had 17 friends and 25 emails in my inbox. It seems like a great way to stay connected to people, so I am excited to try it out. If you are reading this and you haven't joined yet, maybe you should give it a try. It kind of reminds me of being at a party, but without the fattening food and the stress of trying to smile all the time.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

waves of sadness

Another problem with losing someone you love is that waves of sadness come crashing down at random moments in time and, regardless of how long they last, all that registers in your heart and mind is an overwhelming sense of loss. To some this may seem like a negative thing to say, but for me it is a sign that although the person is gone for now, he never will be forgotten.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

first day of school photos

A picture really is worth a thousand words. But, to be fair, Max got the "mean" teacher this year.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

parlez vous french horn

Abby went to her 2nd day of Junior High today and came home with a french horn. I encouraged her to try it based on an NPR piece I heard that made it sound like if you mastered the french horn, you could probably own the world. She is bright and talented and has always shown a strong interest in owning the world, so it seemed like a good fit.

As soon as I got home she pulled it out of the case and by the time we sat down to dinner we had found a series of 23 tutorials on playing the french horn, learned how to control the pitch by the angle of the hand in the bell and Abby was experienced at emptying spit valves. We also knew how to play the notes F, G and A, although the actual playing of said notes requires a subtle variation in the embouchure which may take more than one night to nail down. Even for Abby.

I already suggested to Max that he go find his headphones and Dave quickly left the house to mow the lawn.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

mixed messages

My sister brought ice cream for Abby's birthday a few weeks ago and we just remembered it was in our freezer. The flavor is malted vanilla (think the inside of a whopper) and it is a gourmet brand, so I decided to go the extra mile and make some home-made chocolate sauce to go with. The recipes I had all called for evaporated milk or sweetened condensed milk, both of which I ran out of back on December 24th, so I decided to see what Allrecipes could offer. With two little words in one search I came up with exactly the recipe I need. Ironically, this was posted just below the recipe:

1 Rule of a flat stomach: Cut down 37 lbs of stomach fat in 3 months by follwing this 1 rule.

I'm not going to pay any money to find out what the "1 rule" is; I'm pretty sure it has nothing to do with eating chocolate sauce.

Monday, August 18, 2008


My husband bought tickets for the whole family to go to Wilco tonight at Red Butte Gardens. It was a sold out show, we were all excited, but when it came time to go the tickets were lost. We couldn't get in with just a receipt, so we didn't get to go. Dave was sad, I was sad, the kids were sad, though technically I think the kids and I were mostly sad for Dave.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

a tinge of regret

Last night my husband and I caught the last half of "Legal Eagles" on t.v. This is one of my favorite 80's movies, but last night we were so distracted by the state of Debra Winger and Daryl Hannah's eyebrows that we found ourselves discussing the demise of the brow as if it were another horrible moment in history. In the end, Dave decided the demise was a direct result of the women's rights movement while I blamed Brooke Shields, but regardless of who caused it to happen, I'm sure every woman who survived the 80's looks back on her caterpillar brow with more than a tinge of regret.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

twelve is the scariest number

One time I had a guy stalking me. He was developmentally delayed and had decided I was his girlfriend, so he never caught on that I wasn't interested. My friends and family thought this was hilarious, especially when he asked my dad if he could take me to the Monsters of Rock concert. My brother thought it was so funny that one night he came home pretending to be the guy. He rang the doorbell and called out so convincingly that when he opened the door and walked in the house, I freaked out, screamed at him to "Get out!" and was on the verge of throwing a cast iron frying pan at him when I realized who he was.

Another time, a friend of mine took me into an old abandoned school to prove it wasn't scary. He showed me the gym, then walked me around a bit. On our way back through the gym, I noticed a body hanging from the basketball hoop. It turned out he had planned it all and the body was only newspaper stuffed into clothes, but I nearly wet my pants.

But the scariest thing I have ever experienced is watching my daughter turn 12. Last month she took over the bathroom, spent most of her birthday money on clothes and started shaving her legs. She is a good girl, smart and confident, but I may never feel more frightened than when I see boy after boy watching her walk, blissfully oblivious, beside me.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

i wish it wasn't so

I looked out the window and what did I see?
Apricots rotting off the apricot tree.
August brought me such a nice surprise,
Apricots rotting right before my eyes.
I could take a bowl full and make some jam,
But I've already made jars and jars of jam.
I wish it wasn't so, but it seems to be.
Apricots rotting on the apricot tree.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

hope on the road

There is something incredibly hopeful about a pack of 8 year old boys in scout shirts riding their bikes down the middle of the road.

Monday, August 11, 2008

at the end of the day it all falls apart

At 6 o'clock this evening I wound up my work day planning to fix a quick dinner, spend quality time with my kids and then put on my new running shoes for a jog around the block. At 6:45 I sat down to eat and decided it was too hot to run outside but I would go to the gym. At 7 o'clock my kids had fled and I flopped down on the sofa. At 7:10 my husband talked about mowing the lawn and I envisioned myself in a healthy weeding workout. At 7:15 I thought about changing my clothes but it seemed like too much trouble. At 7:20 my daughter asked me to take her to the store. At 7:25 I knew my running shoes would not make it out of the box. I'll probably go buy some ice cream.

Saturday, August 9, 2008

thanks for the memories

By an odd twist of fate, I had the chance this weekend to see dozens of people from my past. I saw aunts and uncles, cousins and friends, old best friends, old boyfriends; some people I never thought I would see again. This was an amazing thing for me, not because people had changed, or because they had not, but because when I stood back and looked around, I saw little pieces of me. These are the people who shaped me. Through the experiences we have shared together, both good and bad, they have made me who I am. As a reasonably upstanding citizen, I am grateful for their influence and example. They have served me well and if I could go back in time, I wouldn't change a thing. Except for maybe my hair...

graveside remarks

Several people requested copies of the remarks I gave at my brother's graveside service. Here they are...

If you have ever heard the song about Henry and Liza and their broken bucket, you know it is long and tedious and quickly becomes tiresome. Grief is much the same way. When we lose someone we love, regardless of how close we have been to them, there is suddenly a hole in our lives. It may be a big hole if we live with them or work with them and see them every day; it may be a tiny hole if it is a distant relative or friend from the past, but there is always a hole.
The problem with the hole is that despite the amount of faith and hope we have, there is very little we can use to plug the hole. Like the bucket, we can think of things that may help temporarily, but inevitably it will come back to the fact that what we really need to plug the hole left by the person who died is the person himself.
Nevertheless, death is a part of life. It is part of our Heavenly Father’s plan. In order to learn and grow, we must experience all the joy and sadness that makes up our earthly lives. Without these experiences, we would never know the glory that will come from holding fast to the rod and enduring to the end.
Fortunately, we are not alone in our sorrow. We can take comfort in the same words spoken to a prophet long ago, “Peace be unto thy soul; thine adversity and afflictions shall be but a moment; and then, if thou endureth it well, God shall exalt thee on high…thy friends do stand by thee, and they shall hail thee again with warm hearts and friendly hands.”
There is no doubt in my mind that Phil endured his afflictions well. I know that as we stand here now, enduring our own afflictions, the warm hearts and friendly hands of all those who have loved him and gone on before have hailed him again and will stand by him and us until we are all reunited.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

i don't know dinner

I like to cook, I really do, but coming up with something for dinner every night is beyond me. On a good night, I think up something on my way home from work and once I've got a plan, making dinner is a snap. But typically I don't think about dinner until my kids have said they are hungry several dozen times and my guilt-siren is blaring. At this point I begin to ask the dreaded question, "What should we have for dinner?" Inevitably the answer is, "I don't know." So, at long last, I have written a recipe for "I don't know." It doesn't taste very good but the instructions are simple:

1. Open the fridge.
2. Stare absent-mindedly at the middle shelf.
3. Close the fridge and open the freezer.
4. Repeat step #2.
5. Close the freezer and open every cupboard and drawer in the kitchen.
6. Close most of the cupboards and drawers and reach for something you can snack on.
7. Eat enough that you are no longer hungry.
8. Pour your kids a bowl of cereal.
9. Vow to prepare a well-balanced meal the next night.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008


During the years that I drove my old Volvo wagon, the radio never worked. As a result, whenever I drove my kids somewhere, we passed the time singing or talking. Last year I replaced my old wagon with a shiny new car complete with a radio, cd player, auxiliary plugs for our I pods and laptops. But old habits die hard and while driving Max to Science Camp last week, more often than not we found ourselves with the music off and the conversation on. Since it was an hour away (we spent nearly as much on gas as we did on the camp) we covered all kinds of subjects and one day we made up new lyrics to a song that kept us laughing through several long stop lights. We had a great time, but I didn't realize how valuable it was until this morning during a short 5 minute ride home from swim lessons. Max said, "I wish I was still going to Science Camp this week. The ride was a lot longer."

Monday, August 4, 2008

an ice-cold cup of unbridled enthusiasm

On the plane yesterday, I sat in front of a woman who spoke so loudly she woke me from my fitful, head-bobbing sleep and I was unsuccessful at drowning her out with my headphones. From what I could tell she had paid for her drink and true to my critical self, I found her irritating. But, with nowhere to go and nothing else to do, I gave myself up to eavesdropping. As I listened, I became more and more intrigued by her enthusiasm for things. Like restaurants. She loves restaurants. Loves them! LOVES them!!! And the London Times. She thinks it is a wonderful paper. Wonderful! WONDERFUL!!! She cheered out loud when she read that a professional sports star was negotiating a contract with her favorite team. Woo! Woo!! And she cheerfully pointed out that she works ten hours a day. Ten! TEN!!! She loves her job and wouldn't trade it, despite beginning each day with a 6:30 meeting that for some reason requires her to wear a hard hat. By the end of the flight, I liked this woman. Of course I wondered if I could order the same unbridled enthusiasm from the beverage cart lady, but I could tell it ran deeper than that. I have thought about her all day...

Sunday, August 3, 2008

there's a hole in the bucket

If you have ever heard the song about Henry and Liza and their broken bucket, you know it is long and tedious and becomes really annoying after the first couple of verses. This pretty much sums up grief too. When you lose someone you love, regardless of how close you have been to them, emotionally or geographically, there is suddenly a hole in your life. It may be a big hole if you live with them or work with them and see them everyday; it may be a tiny hole if it is a distant relative or friend of a friend, but there is always a hole. The problem with the hole is that despite the amount of faith and hope you have, there is very little you can use to plug the hole. Like the bucket, you can think of things that may help, but inevitably it will come back around to the fact that what you really need to plug the hole left by the person who died is the person himself.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

baby it's cold outside

I hate this time of year. It's cold, it's dreary, there is little to look forward to. Spring is too far off to dream about and Valentine's Day is no consolation if you have been married for more than a minute. The best part of premarital Valentine's Day was the hope of a secret admirer or a declaration of love from a soul mate. But my admirer is no longer secret. And my soul mate makes me oatmeal on an ordinary weekday morning, which is way better than a nasty candy heart that says "be mine". And, so! The winter weeks loom ahead and I struggle to find purpose in getting out of bed and the cat hunts the heating vents like a thing possessed...

Sunday, January 13, 2008

nothing to say

I have succumbed to peer pressure (or whatever kind of pressure it is that is caused by my young children being more creative and tech-savvy than me) and started a blog.

Ironically, I can think of nothing to say. I spent more of my "free" time thinking of a title for this blog than I have spent on anything else in days.

But in time, I may think of something... and now I will have a place to say it.