Tag Archives: word up yo

Orion Rising

Orion rising
over adjacent rooftops.
Twenty six degrees

and falling. Festive
front porch twinkling; enchanted
is my homecoming.

header 150x150Mama's Losin' ItIn response to Mama Kat’s prompt: Enchanted, and the lovely Nerd Mafia’s Word of the Week.


Listening to White Noise

I was just standing outside, supervising the dogs’ morning constitutional in the chilly backyard. I was shivering, but not from the cold. More from being sleepy. I was listening, as I mostly try not to, to the noise pollution that comes as a result of living a quarter mile from an Interstate (even if you can’t see it for the marsh and the trees), a football field’s distance from a major state road, and on one of the only north-south roads to cross-over the aforementioned Interstate. A random, rhythmic cacophony of white noises, punctuated by blares and screeches and thumps that I effectively tune out the majority of the time.

The dogs were done with business, and Maurice especially wanted to potter around (he’s a very busy dog), but I had to call them in. There was laundry to switch, breakfast to be made, myself to be made ready to face the six and a half hours of work I have to endure.

And, as I have since I went back to part time work earlier this summer, I counted the number of days until I return to full time work. And I found I could do it on my two hands. Now, suddenly, long lazy afternoons at home to play with my small boy, to play on the internet, to write, to make dinner for my family, approach extinction at an alarming rate.

And I resent it.

I resent the intrusion of this thing I must do, when there are so many other things I want to do, not the least of which is go back to bed for another hour or so.

I am aware that my experience is not unique. I am aware, acutely so, that I am lucky to have the paycheck I require, given the state of things. I am also aware that there are people who genuinely love the work they do, and for whom this struggle is minimal, or perhaps even non-existent. I used to love this work of mine. And even when it started to go sour, I still didn’t mind getting out of bed in the morning.

I have, I guess, lost my taste for it.

And my bed was a warm, squashy haven this morning until the alarm went off and spoiled everything.

And the noise pollution this particular morning begged me to write about it, but there just wasn’t time to do it properly.

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Haiku on a Nanny’s Mediocrity, or Last Friday

hit the snooze three times;
wore the first three things that fit.
phoned it in at work.

go play by yourself…
even my feeble protests?
quite mediocre.

sandwich and carrots;
your milk in yesterday’s cup.
sure, have a cupcake.

nap time. three stories.
yes, we can skip the potty.
are you asleep yet?

this hot, crabby day
passed most mediocrely.
can I go home now?

alone in the car,
now dwelling on a thousand

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A Dark Winter

When I lost my job, nearly a year ago now, it was a huge blow. To my ego, to our finances, to our prospects.

I had to give up my dream of spending my fifth anniversary in Paris. One shouldn’t consider international travel on a fixed income decided by the Department of Unemployment Insurance.

I got lonely, and depressed, and I went inward. Worse than that, I escaped from myself. I put on twenty pounds, I read a lot of escapist fiction. I spent a lot of time in my pajamas. I applied, half-heartedly, for jobs I didn’t want. I got rejected. The spiral of self-loathing continued. It was a dark winter.

About six months later, I started to wake up. I started to blog again, I jumped into the Twitter stream. I rejoined Weight Watchers, and committed to doing yoga and WiiFit. I got some leads on jobs. I applied for a dream job, and was okay when it didn’t pan out.

Then, without warning, the last two weeks dimmed a little. In the midst of the heat and humidity, the stress from my new job, new financial woes, and the immense responsibility I placed on myself to self-improve–must blog! must eat healthfully! must be wry and witty in 140 characters or less!–I started to backslide.

There are less posts up this month than I’d like. I’ve all but stopped working out, and my food choices? Out of control again. My novel-in-progress is at a standstill, despite my having a definite idea of where it’s going, and a real love for my characters.

And you know what?

Today? That’s okay.

I’m going to do some laundry, read my Phillipa Gregory novel, do some yoga, and not worry about it. Hopefully, the Nerd Mafia will forgive me for missing the deadline and the malarky.
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Les Vacances

Two weeks ago today, we were on the beach in Hampton Beach, New Hampshire. It’s my third year vacationing up at Hampton with my in-laws, and this time the three of us stayed a whole week.

Hampton Beach is a quirky place. It’s a faded version of the old boardwalk style beach towns, in the spirit of Coney Island and Old Orchard Beach in Maine. What remains is an eclectic mix of families playing mini golf, swimming in the Atlantic, and eating fried dough and ice cream, and airbrushed teeshirts, piercing storefronts, and loud cruising on the Ocean Boulevard strip.

I love it. I do. I love the effervescent sound of the water hazards in the mini golf course adjacent to my in-laws’ rental. I love the sound of the tide coming in and out across the street. (Yes, the beach was literally across the boulevard from our front porch.) I love the Wednesday night fireworks, and the old-fashioned beach motels, especially the Sea Ranch, whose painted iron railings, and cottage-style motel court squeeze my heart.

Felix isn’t so much of an ocean man, but he loves the sand. Especially playing in large holes in the sand. This is what he did every day we spent at the beach.

He loved Blink’s Fry Doe. And mini-golf. And Memere and Poppa. And kite flying. He also loved hanging out and watching the motorcycles and cars cruise the boulevard.

He loved the playground.

Despite all this fun, I think Felix was ready to head home after about five days. His effervescence faded, his irritability increased, and his manners went right out the window. The final evening, I did the maternal walk of shame, weeping toddler on my hip, out of the restaurant where we’d been having dinner and back the two blocks to our rental. When we put him to bed that night, I said, “We’re going home in the morning.”

When he woke up, his first words were “Are we going home now?”

And while I love a week’s vacation as much as anyone? I was pretty glad to hit the road, too.

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Shitty Midas Touch

Ever had one of those days where everything you touch turns to shit?

Me, too.

Especially gratifying when Parenting is the stuff you’re handling with your shitty Midas touch.

Wednesday was an excellent example. Got out of bed after one snooze, and that? Was the second highest point of my day.

Felix is going through one of his Daddy Phases. And when I suggested that I might put his shoes on his feet this morning? Melt down. Complete with kicking, flailing, shrieking and great big crocodile tears.

In the car on the way to work, he got into a fight with his snack trap, and summarily dismissed both the trap and his sippy cup of juice, effectively ending his breakfast. Did I mention the tears and whining?¬† He tried his Magnadoodle for a while, but somehow became entangled in the pen string. He threw the whole thing to the floor of the backseat in disgust, and then howled at me when I couldn’t reach backwards to retrieve it while driving in traffic.

Did I mention it’s not even 9AM?

Hot. Mess.

By ten, he’d fought with Betty, rejected the whole wheat pancakes Mrs. C. made, and asked for a time-out.

Steaming hot mess.

By noon, he’d stranded himself on the jungle gym in the back yard, fought more with Betty, and cried on the sofa twice. And that was before Mrs C. suggested she and Betty have a swim in the pool while he was napping. Sigh.

What’s Betty gonna do when I have my nap, Mama?

During this period, Betty cried twice because I said no to her, and Elmer wailed inconsolably the whole time I attempted to feed him a bottle. He cried himself to sleep after a half ounce. I felt great.

After a restless nap, I carried my hot, messy offspring to the car, and had the best hour of the day with him running errands in the air conditioned car. He even picked out one of the pairs of the flip-flops I bought myself at Old Navy. I’m sure the improvement in his mood had nothing to do with the chocolate milk and doughnut I picked up for him at Starbucks. Nothing.

When we got home, I agreed to dismantle the train tracks that were set up on his play able, so he could race his matchbox cars. Five minutes after said dismantling? “Mama? I want train tracks.”

When I said no, I needed to make dinner and empty the dishwasher, and didn’t you just ask me to take them apart? he hurled half a dozen trains to the floor. Trains in time out. Boy on the floor in tears. Hot. Messy. Snotty. Tears.

We had tears over a lost bouncy ball and tears over not having the right flavor of yogurt in the fridge.

We had tears about the number stories, followed by “Just leave me ‘lone,” when I tried to tuck him in.

I listened to him grumble and grizzle on the monitor for about fifteen minutes after I left him ‘lone.

By the end of this day? He was not the only hot mess in the household.

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Where’s the Snark?

Christ in a sidecar, I have the writer’s block.

I keep trying to start posts. There was one about how much I love British slang. Yeah… Nope. I wasn’t feeling the words. There was one about keeping my snarky comments to myself at work. It actually got a little too snarky… I started one about the time my dogs got on the school bus when I was in kindergarten. I couldn’t find the right angle.

I am so very interesting.

Oh, there’s the snark.

Glad I could get that out. Now, if I could just get my Mama Kat’s post together.

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Enter Title Here

I’m staring at my empty post, my blank Add New Post. Today? I have nothing.

It’s been a long day. Work, picking up the new car, Felix’s daily shenanigans. And dinner isn’t even near being on the table.


Dinner is in the oven, which might not be as hot as outside is tonight. Ugh. When it’s this hot, I lose my will to function normally. I want to curl into a puddle of something like watermelon, and wallow until the air quality improves. It’s like some ass backwards version of seasonal affective disorder.

I forgot my book at work today, so not only do I have nothing to read tonight, the C.’s are being treated to a borrowed hardcover edition of The Winter Rose. My illusion of being highbrow is shattered, three weeks into the new job.

It’s better than it looks.

The new van is awesome, except that-oops!-they don’t have a second key/remote for me. Ummm, that’s kind of a big fumble… It’s an ’09. WTF? So, I have to go back to the dealership on Thursday and get my inspection sticker, and apparently strong arm the dealership into hooking me up with a proper set of keys.


I think I’ll call it a night, watch some Deadliest Catch, and work on my Mama Kat’s post for Thursday.
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Gut Full of Raving Butterflies

Twenty four hours from now I’ll be at my new job.

I haven’t been at a new job since January of 2005. While I’m not, in essence, a worrier, I do get nearly debilitating nausea in anticipation of situations I can’t control. Right now, I’m typing, but my fingers are this close to being shaky, and I’m skipping from thought to thought, between fretting at chores that aren’t done to what Felix and will need to bring to work, to what outfit would best suit the first day. Oh, and what’s the weather supposed to be like tomorrow?

Is that weird?

So, I have laundry to fold, lunches to pack, the compost to take out, dishes to do, closets and drawers than need tidying, but before I sat down to this post, I was organizing some pictures from college. I’ll be going back to that project periodically throughout the day.

Can you say, “steeping myself in warm, fuzzy nostalgia, so as to avoid having the gut full of raving butterflies I’ve recently acquired spill up my gullet to freedom?”

Ah, yes. Procrastination. Avoidance.

A friend asked two nights ago whether I was ready for Monday. I replied, “Not remotely.”

She said, “Perfect! You’ll be great.”

That’s usually how I operate. I hold my stress butterflies quietly in my belly, go about my business looking a little green, confess my nauseated misery to Mark after we’ve turned out the lights at night, and keep calm and carry on, right into the fray. I’m good under pressure.

So, tomorrow morning, I will pack Felix’s Beek, our lunches, changes of clothes, and some other stuff, and head out to spend my first day with the Concords. It’s very likely it will be funny and frustrating day.

And once I get a paycheck used to the idea that I’m not a Stay at Home anymore, I think it will be nice to be back into a working routine again.

And a baby! A new baby to smell and snuggle. And not have to get up in the night to feed. I do love this line of work.

header 150x150This post is participating in a new word game, blog hoppy thing, Word Up, Yo! hosted by KLZ of Taming Insanity, and some blogger friends of hers. Since I like words and stuff, you may see this button¬† from time to time. Feel free to check out some of the other posts. I’m looking forward to it, myself.