Sunday, November 15, 2009

Present Time

I am opening boxes that have been packed and stored since the Summer of 2003. Even when we were settled in at our Rancho, it only lasted about three months, before we were back in boxes again. The net results are as follows:

We have at least three of any given household item. In the case of glue, we have about a dozen bottles, but I still had to run to the dollar store and add another bottle to our (missing) collection. We have dishes I do not remember buying. I found our breadmaker. We bought that as a moving consolation in 1994. We have more than one Scrabble set and several humidifiers.

UNpacking our things is both familiar and routine, and also like a surprise party with presents. w00ts! When did we get Champagne glasses? Why did we get Champagne glasses? Are these Champagne glasses ours?

The other night Max was looking for something new to read, and I realized that our books are actually 70% gathered in the same room, so I grabbed a flashlight and went to the library. Library. tee hee... me talk fancy. So I broke in to one box and found twenty-five years of SIGGRAPH journals. Then I peeled ancient tape from another box and hit pay dirt. Still tied together by red Christmas ribbon, three books sent by uncle Paul. I do not know when, but presumably a long time ago, he sent his books, favorites from a series his mother read aloud to him and Joel when they were small boys. Such a sweet gift, the loan of his childhood treasures for his nephews to enjoy. Thank you Paul.

I know. It raises some issues. Why were they still tied in their ribbon? How long did they languish in the dark? How many trips did they make from town to country and back again? Didn't anybody read them and love them and enjoy the kindness of the man sharing them?

I hang my head in shame.
I wince. Audibly.
But you gotta know, it is what happens when you pack and move and move and pack, and commute and relocate, when you pursue a dream and postpone gratification...
Things get left behind and stored for later, and later, well, sometimes it comes much later than we ever imagined. Sometimes later comes painfully late. It's not ideal, but we've been fortunate. Sure, there's been disappointment and collateral damages, but when we arrive at a place that sits to greet the rising sun and nurtures pine trees and flowers, when we want to read a new book and can find something wonderful in our very own library, then I have to say: We are fortunate. And unpacking, daunting as it is, can be like present time and full of surprises.

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Thursday, September 24, 2009

Easy As Pie
If we had grown the wheat ourselves, rendered lard, planted an apple tree and built our own oven... then made the pie... it was about that easy to make the Blue House our very Own Bird House.

And last night, easy as can be, we did make a pie and we ate it in our very own Bird House. It was apple. Max peeled and cored the apples. He thought it would be another month before the house sale was complete. Was he ever surprised when we arrived at our picnic destination.

We got our keys yesterday. I put three pumpkins on the bench by the front door. The first essentials basket is unpacked... the cow cookie cutter is a virgin, a gift from Holly's last visit to Wisconsin and a reminder of family, love and traditions. Those pretty coasters were a gift from a thoughtful and brilliant woman I know and they remind me that friendships make life much, much better. The batteries turned out to be the wrong size for the flashlight... made me laugh. The Frekvens is the Ikea gimmick I have stowed away for two years and now it will finally have a job: turning one room into two, for brothers who will share living quarters. Cranberry candles and pumpkin spice candles, so we can chase away the empty house smell. A gardening handbook... worm themed, so I can start doing more than just dreaming. And our bird chart, because I will be spending a lot of time just lazing about and identifying bird species... you know, in my free time!

It is a big blue house with a big green yard. Betty-Chica will need track shoes to get around this place. Do you remember my blue, baby figgy? Well, the momma figgy lives here. I shouldn't explain. I take the fifth.

Language is inadequate. I cannot adequately describe my struck-to-the-core giddiness. Another brilliant friend commented on a recent post: "I've never known you without the wistfulness of yearning for a birdhouse of your own again. Who will you be now that you've become all SETTLED?" The answer is I do not know, but I feel a light has been turned on, and I feel relieved, eager and energized. I am delighted to have this new chapter open up before us and I am happy to delve in.

Language is inadequate, but here are some words that spring forth...


Someday I would like to put them in order, elaborate. But for now, I really must get busy putting other things in order!

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Sunday, August 23, 2009

It's A Brand New Day...

The entire soundtrack is buzzing through my head...

"Even in the darkness

Every color can be found

And every day of rain

Brings water flowing

To things growing in the ground"

Sweet Penny...

"I cannot believe my eyes

Is the world finally growing wise

‘Cause it seems to me

Some kind of harmony

Is on the rise"

From Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog, of course. And of course if you know the whole story, you recognize I pulled out the happy lyrics.

Janece, when did you post about the initial release of this hilarious, yet heart wrenching, tale of good vs. evil? That was a good day.

Well, this brand new day comes after a fun filled night. Visitors from Chicago and Wisconsin have been filling our last days of summer with laughter and a whirl of activities, and really good Spam Musubi! Paul came out on business and to his surprise his aunt Margie was in town too. Fortunately there has been time for Paul to mix business with pleasure.

No flash... which really captures the whirl of activity. Paul, who Maria calls "Paulm," has elevated his status to favored uncle. He demonstrated enthusiasm and boundless energy when playing with Maria and Izzy. I think they all got quite a workout. On the way home, still giddy from all the excitement, Maria explained in elaborate detail all the great "... imagination Paulm did when we played." She thought it was great that he ordered food from their restaurant and gave piggy-back rides. When she realizes he's going back to Wisconsin today, I know we are going to hear an Autumn in Wisconsin Campaign from her... I would take her side.

The party was spread all over Holly and Rich's place... courtyard and backyard, watching local Little Leaguers win their first game of the Series in Pennsylvania. I even got to have a new crochet lesson from Margie... there was something for everyone. And even though we were all over the place, something did finally bring everyone together! Deanne and James brought dessert which, no surprise, was a big hit.

Brownies and ice cream... grandchild magnets!

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Sunday, May 10, 2009

Some Mothering
This post first appeared last year and I think it's well worth repeating, with some additional faces. The first time I published it, it took forever just to gather the images, to double check that I was representing as many mothers as possible and then to format all of them etc. I didn't have time or energy left to name names + I am totally paranoid about misspelling and mislabeling. This seemed like a ripe opportunity to make a classic, if innocent, goof-up. Another thing that I thought a lot about is this... I know many women who are not technically mothers and yet they definitely posses the strength and caring, the nurturing and dedication... doting aunts, dear friends, generous women... is there a name for them, do we recognize those kinds of mothers? I think we should. Happy Mothers' Day to all the women who care and give, and support and inspire. We make a good team.

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