Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Time delineated

I spend all of my time trying to find the LEGO ninja guy's hat and sword. At dusk, we searched the street. At dawn, we searched the couch. Phoenix holds the guy in his hand like an extension of his own body, effectively executing ninja moves with his mini counterpart. Only, parts go missing. And parts must be located.
I spend all of my time sorting and packing for our move in 2 weeks. I am merciless - if it holds no value either sentimentally or intrinsically it must go. Tiny House Nation is an absurd inspiration as we head to a bigger house. I start to feel guilty about all the space.
I spend all of my time planning and organizing for the near future.
I spend all of my time trying to enjoy the now.
I spend all of my time wondering where I am headed and what I will be one day.
Time is a tricky bitch.

Sunday, June 1, 2014


This one goes out to my ladies, near and far. Now I'm grinning, because in my head, I sounded like Barry White when I typed that. 
I gather you in, your strength, your positive thoughts and vibes - you. I think these days roll by and we hurry and scurry, and I think maybe I forget to tell you I care. Then I read a bit of a writing by someone like Rachel Lewis, and it burns me with its direct beauty. 

I count you on my fingers
One digit for each
You are my soul sisters
and I am saying lucky
with each name I recite
lucky lucky lucky
Lucky we found each other
lucky lucky lucky
Lucky our hearts knit
I breathe your name
I call up your essence in my head
In times of need
You are comfort, you are calm
On days of challenge
You are rage, you’ve got my back
Like saints I whisper you into being
Conjure you with a memory
You are my rosary
My consolation in days of dread
Blood’s got nothin’ on soul


Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Beauty and Risk In Another's Words

"I love being horribly straightforward. I love sending reckless text messages (because how reckless can a form of digitized communication be?) and telling people I love them and telling people they are absolutely magical humans and I cannot believe they really exist. I love saying, “Kiss me harder,” and “You’re a good person,” and, “You brighten my day.” I live my life as straight-forward as possible.

Because one day, I might get hit by a bus.

Maybe it’s weird. Maybe it’s scary. Maybe it seems downright impossible to just be—to just let people know you want them, need them, feel like, in this very moment, you will die if you do not see them, hold them, touch them in some way whether its your feet on their thighs on the couch or your tongue in their mouth or your heart in their hands.

But there is nothing more beautiful than being desperate.

And there is nothing more risky than pretending not to care.

We are young and we are human and we are beautiful and we are not as in control as we think we are. We never know who needs us back. We never know the magic that can arise between ourselves and other humans.

We never know when the bus is coming."

— Rachel C. Lewis

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Teen in the house

Well friends, it had to be something big to break my blogging dry spell. My stories are still churning around in my head, but life intervenes to keep them locked up. I think we are all waxing and waning with this, taking a break, starting back up with a fresh energy. Right bloggy buds?

My fresh energy today comes from the Milestone of Milestones, the Big Day of Big Days.... the First Teenager In the House. Talk about nostalgia - all week I have been looking at old videos, thinking of his first words, his funny little phrases, oh gosh. The misty eyes, they well up at every moment!

I can only be referring to sweet Cole.

This guy.
What is better than new birthday shoes? Not much.

This morning I made random announcements like "Oh Cole, you were born exactly 11 hours from now, in the evening!" "Well, right about now I was vacuuming the house, ignoring the beginning contractions..." "Ooh, ooh, I was talking to Aunt Vera and Emily now, nervously asking for advice..."
Frankly, I am a little impressed at the staying power of my memory. Thirteen years later! Ta-da! But don't ask about last week. Good luck with that recall. All hail the power of pregnancy & birthing hormones, searing in those selective memories.

I want to say so many things to this boy. Things that may be unsaid in the scurry from school to homework to baseball to bedtime. 

You are handsome and athletic, and every time you make an awesome play at short stop, I wish your Pop-pop was around to see you play ball. You make it look easy. Not with the flashy swagger so commonly associated with athletes - but with a quiet ease. Calm and collected, you are so solid. As lead-off batter, confident and assured - you take the weight of being first and make it happen at the plate. Nobody wants that job, did you know? But you get out there, you start things off, you do what needs to be done - with the right attitude. Keep that attitude. That confidence tempered with humility.

You are kind and loving. It warms my heart to hear that you befriend new students, and think of how lonely and out-of-place they may feel. That empathy will carry you far, your entire life. Never forget to spend a moment in someone else's shoes, and act accordingly. And never stop asking if you can hold a friend's new baby - that tenderness and care for the little ones is a treasure.

You are bright and clever. Yeah, I said it. Despite my constant pushing and questioning and driving. Even though I want to see those perfect grades, I guess I want more for you to be happy - and that means that I have to back off. It's hard, you stinker. You drive me crazy with your announcements of quizzes you forgot to study for: "Oh yeah, we had a science quiz today." Cue Mom, going ballistic, starting into a tirade of how you should write in your agenda. Cue Cole, smirking and waiting for me to shut up. "Relax Mom, I got a 97." You've got my lucky streak, so I shouldn't complain - but still, you should study, kid. I never used that luck for school, preferring to put in the hours. Maybe you've got something there, after all.

Things like this should be said. At least on a birthday. At least now and then.
Happy 13th, Best Boy.

Love, Mom

Thursday, March 27, 2014


"We spend too much time cursing time -- time waits for no man, time will tell, oh, the ravages of time, time flies! We don't think about the gift of time. Time gives us the chance to make mistakes and correct them, to regenerate, to grow. Time gives us the chance to forgive, to restore, to do better than we have ever done in the past. Time gives us the chance to be sorry when we fail and the chance to try to discover in ourselves a new heart... How we use this time means everything. Will we take the opportunity to transform ourselves... and to become, against all odds, the people of our dreams? That's what it's about, right? --- becoming the people of our dreams."

-Anne Rice, The Wolves of Midwinter

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

And Now You Are 9

I miss these days...
 the giggle of baby girls
 the sweet plumpness of fresh baby arms and legs
the soft murmurings of baby babble

And now you are 9 and I am shaking my head at the years, and how scientists talk about the speed of light as though it does not exist right in front of us. In the speed of light you  - chunky monkeys, sweet pumpkins, darling doves - have gone from me.
And in your places, in your places have sprung strange new creatures with varied and curious opinions and feelings, and an abundance of drama and expression.

Be kind, my lovelies
Be strong and kind
Empathetic and expressive
Whatever you do, believe in it wholeheartedly
Treat your friends loyally
Stand with your brothers
Do the best you can, and work diligently
And always, always
brush your hair

With all my love,

Saturday, December 7, 2013

Deadly Bites and Weapons Before 7am

Phoenix: If a king snakes bites you, you will be dead forEVER. Like, EVER. If it bites you. A king snake will bite you, you know. It will. It bites.

Me: King snakes are harmless to us. They do not have venomous bites. They eat pests like rats and mice and help us.

Phoenix (with a totally disgusted look and a sarcastic tone): What, like you might just scream loudly if it bites you? That's IT? Sheesh.

Phoenix: Maybe I can ask Santa for something like small gun. Just a small one, not real. I mean, not a real gun - not that. Just like, a play gun. But still a gun, I mean. A gun for Christmas.

Me: silence... and the distinct feeling that I do not know where this child came from, with his snakes and gun talk.

Do you ever look at your kids that way? As though they dropped out of the sky?

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Sunday Note: Substance

substance (noun): the quality of being meaningful, useful, or important

Come to me with your substance
Let me hear your words
Let your worth be a banner
Let all manner of tomfoolery
be underlaid with meaning
Let us laugh and then share one of those moments
Where silence can indeed say it all
Silence and a falling teardrop
caressing your cheek
and singing the song of love
Carrying in its path the tale of war wounds
and broken hearts
and hearts that keep on living.
The substance of tears
may just be the substance of soul
Set free for the short journey
You could catch it with your tongue
and carry that soul within
Or just let it soak back into the ground
substance matter mass
You are always with us.
Changing form
Carrying on.

All will be well, and all will be well, and all manner of things will be well.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Pete the Cat talks

She holds Pete up like a chubby fur-puppet, and her Pete-voice reminds me of Burt (of Sesame Street fame, Burt & Ernie).
"Bethany, take me to work with you today. Do you think of me when you're gone? Do you miss me all day? Because I'd catch a grenade for you... jump in front of a train for you... I'd do anything for you. But you don't feel the same."