[Short Post]Can’t Feel Accomplished for More than a Minute

Photo: Richard! You fool! Get down from there! (Seriously, I forgot to move the damn doll already! Had to throw him up there while the boys were still doing their get-up routine. Thank goodness I remembered!


The Christmas letter is written. The Christmas cards arrived yesterday afternoon (special shout out to the postal worker who left the Snapfish box out in the soaking rain!). You’d think that would signify a doneness… but you’d be wrong, Dear Reader! This is only the beginning. Now is the time for hunting down the addresses of people who have moved, creating the mail merge, getting the stamps, writing the little notes at the end of all the letters, and getting everything all stuffed and ready to go.

None of that is gonna happen tonight. I’m spent. I’ve climbed my mountain . It’s been a long day. One last thing to do today: this blog post.

Just as I was setting up to get down to business on today’s post, my husband came downstairs to remind me that Major’s birthday is in January.

So desu ne,” I replied with a sigh.

The Husband has made it fairly clear that I will not be getting away with the anti-birthday-bash coup that I pulled last year. Kids get parties. Even kids born in January. So I’ve been told. I’ve gotta look into booking a place. Just another task to add to the growing list. I’m thinkin’ bowling. That’s a good kindergarten birthday party, right? I mean, he’s never been, so… that might be awkward… or maybe awesome?

Maybe we could just take a beach vacation? Wouldn’t it be better to spend our money on that? He sorta likes the sand!

I’m going to bed.

See you Friday for Quiet Thoughts




[Bloggy Sick Day] Rough Transition



Did two days go by?

This new schedule is grueling. I can’t believe it’s Monday!

We slept, we ate, I got a little bit of cleaning, a little bit of work done… but it’s 5:30 on Monday afternoon as I write this and all three of us are staring into oblivion. I can’t believe it. Why don’t we have the stamina for this? I’m incredibly surprised about how difficult this transition has been.

I’m trying my best not to worry about it. It probably doesn’t help that we’re all sick.

Did I tell you that we’re all sick? Oh yes. We’re all sick. Full blown chest colds. It’s lovely. I want to write a full 1000 word rant about the super considerate mother and the lovely child who gave us these colds, but… I’m trying to better my karma points.

And, let’s be clear: nobody needs more rage in the world right now.

But what my family needs is rest. So this is a short post. I’m going to make dinner, I’m going to put my children to bed, and then I’m going to do the same. My brain is full of thoughts and worries, my body is sore and fatigued… I have so much to write, but they need me more.

So I’ll write with an update on Wednesday. Until then, Dear Reader, take care.


[Fail Post] Blame it on the Late Summer Night


There is peace in my home right now.

Crickets are chirping a late summer song. The dryer is humming, filling the farmhouse with the smell of perfumed fabric softener. There is evidence of the chaos of our day: Batman lays haphazardly on the television stand, three bunch socks rest on the floor in a triad, Minor’s bike helmet sits in the wrong room in the wrong space. There is a plate of grilled hotdogs that The Husband never got around to taking care of. There is a single, beautiful cookie waiting for me to consume it.

It’s 9:34 and I’ve finally found my quiet moment of the day. There is plenty to do, much that will be left undone until tomorrow. I can only focus on the crickets and a low, droning hum. And the click-clack of this keyboard, the glare of this screen, the guilt that I feel for being too mentally drained to write something more clever.

I suppose there are also the click-clack of this keyboard, the glare of this screen, the guilt that I feel for being too mentally drained to write something more clever. If only I’d paid more attention today, found the perfect narrative to tie together a full, intense day.

I’ve written a lot of Fail posts this summer. Not because of lack of words, but because of lack of bandwidth. Today was a day where there was not a moment to spare between one thing and the next. I was up at 6 and I’ve been moving ever since.

And now I’ve gotta rest. I’ve gotta wash the heavy-duty bug spray off of me before I get into bed. I’ve gotta get some aloe and oil into these locs, so desperate for a retwist. I’ve gotta sit with my Kindle and read a paragraph of something I didn’t write.  Writer’s Digest is out and this month’s issue is dedicated to querying agents and going legit traditional publishing. As I’ll explain on Friday, this month’s issue could not be better timed.

I know that I’ve also gotta balance my time a bit better. I’m sorry, Dear Reader. School starts soon, regular schedules will return before you know it, and then the Failure will happen less often.

Will you forgive me one last time this season, Dear Reader? I thank you for your patience. I hope that there are crickets singing outside of your window right now. I hope the mundane hum of the place you call home make you sink into your chair a little deeper, make your breathing slow down a bit, make you forget your worries and cares. The night is for stillness. Let us be still, Dear Reader. The busy time comes again soon.

See you Friday for Quiet Thoughts.


[Fail Post] A Time to Call Home

Photo: Two little boys got breakfast and a show when workmen came with chainsaws to take care of the dead trees yesterday morning. The resulting wood was a fun climbing wall for two little boys, and hopefully good fuel for our planned fire pit. Of course, given the way next month is going to go (not to mention the miserable severe drought), there probably won’t be any fire pits built until next spring.


So many Fail posts this summer…  I’m sorry, Dear Reader. These feel like a cheat, a throw-away. I don’t mean it that way. I hope you’ll forgive me.

For reasons that I will explain during my Quiet Thoughts on Friday, I have to take a break tonight. The Husband and I both are fielding calls from family as two separate and unrelated (yet oddly similar) events send ripples through the families and force us to make decisions and put together plans. Couple this with the normal exhaustion of Summer Parenthood and you have the perfect storm of mindless fatigue. I need to shower, stare at the television, and let the world wash over me.

Lest this cause worry, we’re fine. The four of us, anyway. Our extended families, our families down at home, demand our attention. In the immediacy of it all, there is such an inevitability to what we’re dealing with (aren’t we are all slowly marching to oblivion?). Yet, when oblivion comes calling for someone you love, the event horizon presents chaos, and that chaos requires all hands and all focus until the necessary decisions are made.

Of a certain age now, connected by the threads of relationship and duty, my husband and I are now party to so many of these decisions. So we’re on the phone and making plans, preparing to take care of others, as we watch people we love so dearly do what we all must eventually do.

I promise to see you Friday for Quiet Thoughts.

[Short Post] But with a Preview…

Photo: Two out of my four tomato plants, grown from seed. Martha Stewart says that Millennials are feckless, lazy and mollycoddled… and that we don’t know how to grow anything. Well, Martha, here is one of my abundantly growing beds, full of tomatoes and other plants! Also, Martha, if I needed some woman’s unnecessary and unsolicited critique, I’d get on the phone with my mother-in-law! Don’t make me erase your baking show off my DVR…


It’s a short post because I’m exhausted and it’s getting late. The trip to Wegmans and a run into Cambridge with two boys who are whiny and full of energy  has really taken it out of me. But I wanted to give you a sneak peek at my Quiet Thoughts for Friday:

We just revealed to two little boys that they will be taking their first music lessons tomorrow. Guitar lessons for Ursa Major, a trial of multiple instruments for Ursa Minor. They will be able to borrow the instruments for practice at home, and we are giving it a go for 4 sessions. If the boys enjoy it, if they practice without too much fighting, if they make progress and they want to continue… we will purchase instruments for them. A shiny blue guitar for Ursa Major. I’m suspecting a drum set for Ursa Minor, but I could be wrong (My Lord, please let me be wrong!).

It’s an investment. $300 for these 4 lessons alone… but we have been given an unexpected opportunity to make this happen and I’ve been under the advisement of very wise counsel…. so this is happening. I’m sure it’s gonna be a huge headache… but it was amazing to see Major’s entire body practically float off the floor in excitement when we told him. He needed a win today and here it is. All he’s ever wanted in his whole little life is to play the electric guitar. He’ll start on acoustic, but he’s starting here instead of the piano. I hope he grows to appreciate it.

So… pray for me. Tomorrow is a big day for two little boys. I suspect, at least for Major, that tomorrow is the start of something big. A love affair, even. I’m hoping that this is a huge spark in his life and something he will always have.

Exciting things, Dear Reader! Forgive me for the Fail! (I had such a streak going and now there have been a bunch this summer. I’m sorry. This season is so mean to my productivity levels…)

But I promise that there will be Quiet Thoughts on Friday. They’re practically written in my head already.

Until then, stay safe and take care.

[Fail Post] Just a Little Too Much

Photo: My chicken was too big for my pot. Or maybe my pot was too small for my chicken? Whatever. It was a no-go… so I butterflied the girl and threw her in my cast-iron with all the ingredients I was gonna put on her anyway. The result was still delicious and the gravy that I made was just heaven.


I haven’t done it in a while and I loathe to do it now, but I’ve gotta make this an official fail post. My day was full to the gills with Mama tasks, Wife tasks, Freelancer tasks, even Writer tasks and now I’m sitting here sore and tired, wanting a hot shower and a little time for stillness and quiet. How long was my streak? I even blogged last week! So frustrating! But honestly, my brain is so foggy and my day was such a marathon…

and my husband managed to slice his thumb open while I was typing all this so now I’ve gotta go play nurse and hope I don’t gotta chauffer him to the hospital (as the boys just went to bed!).

So, here is a picture of the beef burgundy I managed to make tonight for dinner:


French cuisine is delicious, but a time suck. Seriously. But so worth it. Oh my God, so worth it.

So… off to be a nurse. Then, hopefully, a long shower and a much-needed rest. Forgive me, Dear Reader.

will see you Friday for Quiet Thoughts.

[Blog Fail] Pretty Monstrous Week


Well hello there, Dear Reader…

I was gonna write about Mister Major’s Day Off because, you see, he woke up with pink eye this morning, so no school for him. Yep, so it was him and me on all the Friday errands, plus a little extra so as to make it fun for him.

I was gonna post fun pictures and share some things he said…

and write about how I’m just about over what I’m pretty sure was food poisoning… an entire week lost… thank God my husband took the day off yesterday to take care of me…

but you see, Dear Reader, I’m typing with one less finger

because I slammed my right pointer finger with my car door after picking up Minor from school. So close to being free… so close to being normal…

typing is painful. Of course, I need this finger to blog, write, knit a gift for my sister that I’m a week behind on, give myself a retwist because my hair is a damn mess, and knead Parker House rolls for Christmas dinner, let alone roll tortillas for tonight’s taco dinner…

so, I’m either on my way to urgent care or the hospital, depending on what my nurse-on-call tells me to do.

yeah… no Quiet Thoughts today…Update after I see the doc…

(Is 2015 over yet?)

Update: not broken! Yay! They used a nifty tool to alleviate the pressure caused by the internal bleeding that was happening under my finger nail. I’ll spare the details so that the squimish will still like me. 🙂 It still hurts like hell and will for a couple of days, but it will get better and I can stil knit! Hopefully I will be able to type to full capacity on Monday, else I will type with one hand (super special skill for the win!).

With storms come rainbows. Some more brilliant than others. I’ll gladly take this one. See you Monday, Dear Reader.