Month: November 2012

My poor kids.

So the Boy (he’s 8 — for 3 more weeks) is the only one in this house (well, besides me, on occasion) who has had a Real Haircut in the past decade. He had a trim (with a Free Haircut coupon) at the beginning of September. So, for the past week, I may have *possibly* nagged him a little about his copious neck hair. I’m telling you what, the boy can grow neck hair. So he finally agreed to let me cut his hairs tonight. Which I did.

Into a mullet.

Classic mullet, ala Batesville High School circa 1989. Except no perm in the back. Only mousse to shaggy it up. It was lovely. Truly.

The mullet, which was achieved by using a #3 blade cover in the center section of the back of his head, lasted as long as it took him to show his sisters, who were not as amused as I was by the whole thing. Husband considered taking a photo for posterity, but in his words, “let’s not encourage this.” I think he meant *me*.

Let me assure you that I understand I should not use my kids as a canvas for my own amusement.

I do understand this. But I do it anyway. Because they’re such GOOD canvasses.

So let it be done.

We have a winner…

Randomness has occurred, my friends. Things are happening. I’m telling you what. Sian, congratulations. You win REACHED for your very own (or to arm-wrestle over with your girls, apparently).

More randomness. Ready?

Thanksgiving is this week. I’m bringing mashed potatoes (with cream cheese, of course) and pie (ditto) and rolls. Bring on the white starches. What are you bringing?

Did you see the Steelers’ jerseys tonight? Because, um. Wow. They look like prisoners. Bumblebees. Something weird, I guess. My friend Matt said “Pitts-burglars” and I remembered why I’ve adored him for like 20+ years. Because he’s cleverer than I, and I love people who are cleverer than I.

What should I get my senior in HS for Christmas? She wants grown-up stuff, the kind that prepare a kid for college, and I want to go more along the lines of Little Tykes toys and board books. Know what I’m saying?

Today

This morning at 7:00 a.m. it was nine degrees warmer than yesterday at that time. That is to say, it was nine degrees. This is inspiring in the manner that hiding under covers and not coming up for air until March (or May) is an act of inspiration.

If you live somewhere where it’s still acting like fall, or summer, or spring, I want you to know that I’m not jealous. I’m FINE. And I’m warm here inside my house with my heater pad and my furnace blowing and my fireplace a switch-flip away. So don’t worry about me. Even if you don’t see me step out of my house for eight months. Or so.

Okay, only kidding. Tonight I’m leaving the house! Really! I’m going to Salt Lake City to Ally Condie’s book launch for REACHED, the book we’ve been waiting for around here for A LONG TIME (a year, people — a whole year). The party is hosted by The King’s English, but located at Rowland Hall (843 Lincoln Street, which is close to 900 south and 900 east) because Miss Ally’s parties are TOO BIG FOR THE BOOKSTORE. Because, Ally herself is a remarkable woman, and her books are fantastic (which you probably don’t need me to tell you if you’ve read them, or the NY Times, or the Wall Street Journal, or Publishers’ Weekly, or any manner of reviews that say “Yes, MATCHED and CROSSED and REACHED are wonderful, lyrical, beautiful, heart-wrenching, adventurous, intelligent, mind-bending masterpieces.” [I’m paraphrasing]).

Hey, here’s a big idea. How about you can win a copy of REACHED? I’ll buy an extra one tonight and have Ally sign it for one of you. She has lovely, legible penmanship, which is a bonus in a signed book, don’t you know. Leave me a comment here, and you’re in for the drawing of the century! (Okay, that was a little dramatic. Sorry.) But it might help you get started on that Christmas book shopping thing, which I can’t quite bring myself to get into just yet… So, in order to win a brand-spanking-new copy of REACHED, just live in the US or Canada and leave me a comment. I’ll draw on Friday, how ’bout that? And if you win, you’ll be glad. (You’ll probably want to hustle out and read MATCHED and CROSSED before I get this to you.)

Things.

1. It SNEW. White and puffery gorgeousness is all around here. Maybe I’ll take a picture or something. Or you can just imagine it. Many inches of loveliness. Here’s why I find it so lovely: I get to stay inside today.

2. Hot chocolate. On the stove. I made it myself. From INGREDIENTS. You know.

3. Story ideas. I love them. I love these lazy “I don’t have to get up” mornings, when the ideas can just mush around inside my brain. In that not-quite-awake, mushy petrie dish of mine.

4. Kid 3, reading on her Kindle by the fire this morning, said, “Well, I think I’m going to go out and shovel. See ya.” Hence the hot chocolate. Isn’t she my favorite child today? (Yes. Yes she is.)

5. Snow is still falling. I like it today. (Remind me of this in February, will you?)

6. Green Plants and How They Hate Me, Volume 1. My fabulous sister-in-law gave me the bushiest, fragrantest (yes, it is a word) [not really] rosemary plant this summer. Huge. Like 18 inches across and high. It has been making lovely chicken and perfect bread and generally bringing me daily gladness. Except I’m trying hard not to kill it. I don’t know what’s wrong with me. It appears to be dying from the inside — the outer [leaves?] rosemary parts are good — not totally as strong as they used to be, but still, you know, green. But from the stalks, all the inner [petals?] rosemary parts are dry and falling off. Into the pot. And onto the floor. And they STILL SMELL GOOD, but I’m so, so sad that I’m somehow killing this plant. I water it about every 10 days. Maybe once a week. And I want it to live and continue to provide me flavory breads and whatnot. Help? [Note: I have tried singing to it. Really. It shrinks away from my rosemary love songs.]

7. I have recently discovered what makes me a pretty good substitute teacher. I’ll tell you, if you want to know. It’s this: TEACHING. When I’m given a lesson, or a discussion to have, or a topic, or even freedom to say whatever, I’m pretty good at it. But when I go in to a classroom and sit there while they do their thing, I’m no better than anyone else who is qualified to press play. Not that this is a bad thing, necessarily. Just a thing. If I go in and Preside, nobody will come out of that class thinking I’m awesome. But if I can actually TEACH, I pretty much rock it. Usually.

Wow. November. How? Whatever.

Guys, I didn’t actually fall over the edge of the world. Only because there’s no known edge. Were there an edge, I might have fallen. (I’ve decided not to commit to a daily list of grateful thingies this year, because I can’t be bothered to commit to anything non-requisite. You get me?)

Instead I’ve fallen into a routine, or something. I tap away at the littles that have to be tapped every day. I grasp at swiftly turing calendar pages. And I determine (again) (all the time, every day) to notice when I’m having fun. When I’m enjoying moments. When I have my whole little family right here inside my reach. When I’m peaceful and grateful.

Here’s when: I’m happy when we’re together. I’m peaceful on Sunday afternoons, to be precise. I’m having fun when I hear the laughing and see the giddy tears that come when we stay up too late giggling about some manner of cuteness. I’m enjoying the moments that fill the days and nights and afternoons.

And I think the happy and the peace and the giddy all blend together to fill up the days and nights and afternoons, and they maybe don’t leave a lot of time for blogging and for phone calling and for visiting. But there’s time for what goes on right here, in this little nest, almost every day. And for that, even though I don’t say it aloud and online, I’m supremely grateful.