Simple Sunday – Sorry Eyes, Bitter Heart

Sasha fancies herself to be a cat, even though she is clearly not a cat. She greatly enjoys sneaking up onto the back of our couch cushions, straddling them, and then falling asleep.

She knows the word “off” and will do so if it is spoken in a severe enough manner and repeated multiple times.

Her eyes say “sorry” but her heart does not.

 

 

Posted in Furry Feet (and fish), Simple Sunday | Tagged , , , , | 4 Comments

Not so little. Not so easy.

It is easy to write about the little things in life. I love capturing, examining, breaking apart, and wordsmithing on the small, seemingly insignificant fleetings that float past. I love them for so many reasons: they are the thread that hold together the larger pieces, they show the true essence of time and people, they are usually quick and fun to write about, and I adore looking back on them to remember and smile.

And while those little moments are what I write about, what I focus on, there is a bigger moment, a moment so long that is has outgrown that term, never fit that term, although it too is a thread that runs continually through the lives of so many people.

On Tuesday I watched the video of George Floyd die under the knee of Derek Chavin.

I can not stop thinking about it. And if I allow myself to replay it in my mind, I feel all over again nauseous and my body starts to tremble.

I want to say that I do not have words, but I do have words, I just fear that they will not, cannot do justice to the justifiable rage and emotional upheaval deserving of it.

I think about perspective and where mine comes from, where yours comes from. I think about how I define myself, where the definition of me which ultimately shapes how I see, react, respond, and reflect upon events and circumstances, started. I am white. I am a woman. I was raised in a two parent family. Politics, religion, socioeconomic. Every detail makes up the construct of me and the lens upon which I view the world.

Pivotal moments in my life have slapped me upside the face, made me realize that how I see, what I assume based upon my views, limited and only slight of dimension, are not the total truth. Will never be the total truth.

I cannot began to know what it feels like to be African American. I cannot began to understand a normal where it is unsafe to simply be because of how I look, because of the definitions and blindness and hate society continues to hang on to.

We can talk about celebrating one another’s differences and respecting each other all day long, but doing it, living it, is entirely different. Changing the construct so that those differences are not dangerous to have, to be, is even greater still and needs to be where we are going. Needs to be where we already should have been. Because this is not a moment. This is not a simple or fleeting, never to be seen again. It continues and continues and continues and continues.

I don’t know what to do with this. I am not comfortable writing about this. This is not cathartic for me.

There are fifteen minutes until launch. The air is filled with the smells of chocolate and peanut butter from some concoction Husband just baked. I should be studying for the National Board Certification test I am taking Monday morning.

Life moves forward.

And I don’t know what to do with this.

 

Posted in Random Thoughts | Tagged | 4 Comments

Nervous Pickles

me: Why are there spots of juice or something on the table?

Cody: It was the pickle jar. It sweats ever time I open itit gets nervous.

Cody is a voracious pickle eater who has been known to eat many, many pickle slices in a sitting.

A nervous pickle jar makes total sense.

If you look closely, you can see the sweat forming on his upper brow.

 

 

 

Posted in Food Glorious Food | Tagged , , , , , | 5 Comments

Simple Sunday – Into Pieces and Back Again

Husband did some research and then a seven dollar part and a couple hours later my computer was back.

This was my laptop on Thursday.

It had been acting up – randomly making chargers unusable (yes, more than one), slowing to a crawl, refusing to acknowledge that it was plugged in until the removal of it’s battery – making me very upset.

Nicely done, Husband!

Posted in Simple Sunday | Tagged , , , | 2 Comments

Back in the Summer of ’95

A couple weeks ago during one of our dinner conversations, the question of whether cats have bellybuttons came up. I started telling a story of the momma cat who had her litter of kittens in the closet of a housemate of mine, casually mentioning that happened to be the summer I lived with a rock band in Portland, OR.

Kitten bellybuttons were immediately forgotten. What rock band? Would they have heard of the band? Was the band famous? I couldn’t remember, no, and I doubted it but I liked their music – were my answers. I texted my friend who also lived in the rock band house (it wasn’t the entire band, mind you, just a couple of the members) and who happened to be the reason I was in Portland that summer. It was an impromptu summer adventure before I started college at ASU. We had very little money and so the more people in the house, the less our share of the rent.

She texted me back quickly – New Bad Things. Right, how could I forget?

I cranked up FreeWheel! on Spotify and danced like a fool while loading the dishwasher. Husband and the boys backed quietly out of the kitchen.

After the dishwasher was loaded, the text thread continued

She found it for me in a matter of minutes. Yellow Pages – a 1 hour 29 minute comedy that was released in 1999. Husband surprised me by buying a copy off eBay. I think he was excited to find out he was married to a movie star. Both my friend and I made the cut and are visible in the longer restaurant scene, but I am not recommending you watch it. It is rather horrible.

You would think that living with an indie rock band and spending a day on the set of a movie as an extra would have been highlights to my summer adventure all those years ago, but they were not. Not even close. What I do remember is this:

  • iced coffee at Powell’s. I could not afford fancy iced coffee so I ordered ice and coffee and put it together. I spent many a morning there.
  • visiting Hal at the Greyhound station almost everyday to check on my lost bag (I packed for an entire month of adventure in that bag that was stolen off the bus. It was never found, but the monies they compensated me with paid for my first semester of college books.
  • braving public transit by myself all around Portland (my friend worked a summer job, while I bummed around living on little, but living a lot.)
  • Kinko’s – for some reason we spent some memorable times there, copying resumes perhaps?
  • learning that the green leafy flecks in the cheap burritos sold from the hole in the wall restaurant walking distance from our house, was cilantro. I hate cilantro but did not know what it was that sometimes made me hate my burrito or taco until that moment. From that point on, I could order Mexican food free of fear that it would have that awful herb in it. Exhilarating!
  • antique shopping on the way to or from a natural nude hot springs and finding a great vintage, tattered, black cardboard suitcase with metal clasps and a leather handle. I used it for a suitcase then, but now it is where I put items that have significance to me.

And yes, kittens do have bellybuttons, but I forgot to tell Cody and Carter that after the slight derailing of our original conversation.

Posted in Random Thoughts | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Simple Sunday – So much can be conveyed in a look

You know when your cat comes over and lays down next to you wanting to nap, but he is so cute that you can’t stop petting him?

That happened to James today. Poor baby James.

Posted in Furry Feet (and fish), Simple Sunday | Tagged , , , , | 2 Comments

Spreading Cheer One Cookie at a Time

Carter ran from door to door around our cul-de-sac, bags of freshly baked cookies clutched in his fist. He respected social distancing, knocking, putting the cookies down, and stepping away to wait and see if someone answered. If they did not, he picked them up and went along his way.

This morning after way too much time staring at a computer screen in the name of remote learning, I suggested he go find something to cook or bake for us. I really did not think he would take me up on it, but he did, for when I wandered into the kitchen to put my dirty coffee cup in the sink, containers of flour and sugars were stacked tall, pyramid style on our counter. He had looked through one of my recipe boxes and had selected a chocolate chip cookie recipe I had gotten from his Farmor’s neighbor (Farmor, being Swedish for father’s mother) a long time ago and had only made once. The recipe is good, great even, but it is one of those that gets shuffled to the back and forgotten.

Carter is not one for coddling. He is independent and for the most part, competent, so I went back to work in my bedroom/office. I did ask him if I could take a picture of him baking so I could share it with his Farmor, to which he agreed.

He made the cookies small, pleased with himself that his cookie yield was higher than what was recorded on the recipe. He also happens to be rather competitive, if I have not mentioned it before.

The sharing of the cookies with our neighbors was completely his idea and it made me so proud as I watched him flit from house to house proud to share his chocolate chipped treats.

During this time of limited movement, I have been baking and cooking more. I have shared all sorts of various treats with our neighbors, even providing some meals here and there to one older gentleman who lives alone across the cul-de-sac.

Modeling kindness, showing empathy, and sharing. It is a beautiful, beautiful thing to see this circle round and passed along. Especially if it is your own child doing it.

Posted in Food Glorious Food, Random Thoughts, The Virus | Tagged , , , , , | 5 Comments

Simple Sunday – Celebrations Big and Small

Celebrations, big and small.

We awoke to unexpected rain. Here in the desert, bonus rain is always something to celebrate.

Husband and I walked the dogs while the boys road their bikes ahead of us. The cloudy weather made the walk seem softer and quieter than usual (even with the addition of the two boys).

Carter turns twelve today. He was very insistent that for his birthday this year, we would make his favorite cake. Can you guess what kind it is?

He had a few small gifts, his favorite by far was Clue book #8, the only one of the set he did not yet have. He was also allowed to slowly rot his brain away with mostly unlimited screen time. This is highly irregular, as we limit screen time to two 20 minutes blocks of screen time a day, two 40 minutes blocks on the weekends.

I had to scrounge around for a candle for his cake, as I had neglected to plan far enough ahead and get birthday candles on our last grocery order. We made due, however.

Our washer started acting up last night. How is this a celebration, you ask? Well we checked the paperwork and we have about two and a half weeks left on our five year warranty.

This video was a text message to Husband – it’s up to it’s old tricks again! We will call tomorrow about getting it fixed.

And, of course it is Mother’s Day. I called my mom and we had a nice chat. Now more than ever, these talks mean a lot and should not be taken for granted.

Celebrations, both big and small. It was a good day.

Posted in Food Glorious Food, Little Feet, Simple Sunday | Tagged , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Simple Sunday – Just a Bunch of Characters

Carter created these, one for each member of our family (pets included, of course).

Circus Zoom meeting, anyone?

Top row: Husband, Haley, yours truly

Middle row: Chloe, Sasha, James

Bottom row: Carter*, Leia, Cody**

*And no, we don’t let Carter smoke in real life. 😉
**Also, I would not condone a Trump hair swoop for any of my children. Or my husband. Or, for that matter, any of my pets.
Posted in Simple Sunday | Tagged , , , , | 3 Comments

Simple Sunday – Sigh

It has been thirty-seven days since we left the house as a family to go somewhere, actually getting out of the car. (I’m not counting going for a sanity drive, as going somewhere, nor am I counting walks.)

I’m feeling more that a bit like this guy.

And I know I should not be complaining. We are fine. We have more than enough oatmeal-chocolate-chip cookies to eat, but sometimes I just want more.

And please don’t get me wrong and think that I am making light of the situation; I am not. But I have never felt quite like a deflated looking, upside down Sock Monkey before.

 

Posted in Simple Sunday, The Virus | Tagged , , , , , | 5 Comments