Friday, January 25, 2008

The most important person in my own mind

Life has a way of knocking me off my high horse. It kicks me right off, usually only moments after I get on.

Yesterday, I was feeling pretty good about myself. A national magazine gig. I had just received an advance copy of a book from a New York publishing house to review for my story. I was feeling pretty darn important.

Now, in case you didn't know, it's January. And, just in case you weren't aware, it's often very, very cold in January. This makes my non-driving lifestyle annoying at best, and often, it puts me on the border of child neglect as the girls and I trudge home through the snow in zero degree weather, Carolyn with a head of wet hair (which of course I cover with hat(s)). Anyhow, yesterday morning was especially cold so I decided to drive Carolyn to school (for the very first time and yes I know I picked her up the other day but picking up is not the same as dropping off) on my way to the office, aka coffeehouse.

We g0t there early and I nabbd a spot right in front. I was eager to do this because I believe, in my heart of hearts, that the other moms believe I'm an unlicensed drunken driver. They have minivans. I have a nearly broken-down stroller. They perceive something to be amiss.

When I came back out, low and behold, the car won't start. Now, our car is a big gold car that used to be a cop car. It's quirky, to put it mildly. This not starting has happened before and it has weird rules, like if you get out of the car and try again, it'll start. And you usually have to wait 15 minutes. And it's more likely to start with the automatic starter.

I realize none of this makes any sense, but trust me, it's all completely true.

So not only do I have to sit in my big gold car as the early parents leave, I have to see all the late parents come and go as I sit in my big gold (very chilly) car pretending to talk on my cell phone.

And now, they all have a new reason to think I'm weird. Excellent.

The best part is, I walked home because I had bunches of work to do. Steve walked up to the car and started it right away.

Once again, I proved that while I look OK on paper (New York editors think I'm equipped to write stories for their magazine) I fail miserably at real life (moms avoid eye contact with me as we pass in the hall).

Eh... I'll take that.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Totally whiny blog

My day has been painfully annoying. I decided, due to the snow last night and Neighbors Without Shovels Who Don't Believe Pedestrians Deserve Clear Sidewalks (otherwise known as NWSWDBPDCS... I guess they don't believe in vowels either) I decided to drive the car to pick up Carolyn from school. Getting the girls in and out of the carseats, seeing my house from my parking spot and the cars speeding up and down this narrow street all lent themselves to the irritation of this experience.

When we got home, Carolyn tried to teach Penelope to use the potty. Since I'm not having any luck, I say great. Maybe that's what potty training needs — more 3-year-olds.

I'd write more, or more often, but my life is pretty full right now. No time for idle observations. Today, for instance, Carolyn had preschool, she went out to play in the snow this morning, I shoveled the drive (oh, if I only had a sidewalk), I made some calls, we made a mess in the kitchen, we took Steve to work today, I'm baking my two-day rustic bread and making tomato soup for dinner, we have story time this evening, I need to study/work/do Washington Post crossword puzzle and maybe get Steve from work and did I mention the kitchen is a mess.

Did you notice how many idle observations I made there...

And tomorrow... Well, let's just see how we get wet-headed Carolyn home from the pool with snowy sidewalks. It's called a shovel people. Use it.

Sunday, January 20, 2008

It's been a blue January

Blue as in cold. Blue as in cabin feverish. Blue as in blue.

Yes, of course I'm neglecting this blog. I'm far too busy complaining about how it's impossible to go anywhere or do anything in this kind of cold. Of course, we do have activities Monday through Thursday... night activities Monday through Wednesday... oh, and movie nights on Friday. But what about the playground? Long sunny walks? Bike rides across town just because?

Not today, or tomorrow. Instead, we did a project. We painted Carolyn's room the most lovely shade of blue. For anybody worried about Carolyn's involvement, we used no VOC paint.

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

A farm to remember

What a week we had! Seriously, we went from a foot of snow to no coats — overnight. The girls took to the farm like stink to a pig (I'm not sure what this means, but I love it) and it felt so nice to let them wander the empty fields alone for a little while, something that's impossible in today's world of gigantic cars, destination parks and no sidewalks.

No chance of being run over and getting back to nature. Now that's a vacation.

I love the farm. After just a day there alone, I started thinking, "I could do this. This life, this is what I was cut out for. I'd have a full acre vegetable garden. I'd get chickens." I told Steve that we should start planning what farmers markets we'd attend.

Steve then pointed out I'd been taking pictures of old wooden posts for about an hour, presumably thinking, "how quaint" as I tromped through the field with Carolyn on my heels. In 50 degree weather... In January... With two horses. Probably not the best indicator of my farming talents.

That's city folk for ya.

For instance, we have this:

Oh, the simple beauty of a manure spreader wheel. At least I think it's a manure spreader.

Oh, feed barrels. What stories you could tell!

But I really feel like these last two get to the heart of the matter. The girls are so cute in rain boots, looking up at horses.

Friday, January 04, 2008

Let it snow, and stay

Here's a video, showing both my athletic prowess, and how much snow there is in Michigan. Oh, and Carolyn yelling, "Go faster mommy."