Thank You Notes

Somewhere In The Middle…

of the country is where I am this week. Sean and I are visiting my parents this week in central Illinois. For me, it has meant less computer time and more gazebo and book reading time. For Sean, it has meant time spent with seldom seen cousins and aunts and uncles and unlimited popsicles and rides in the wheelbarrow. There is nothing my parents will not do to amuse the prince. Nothing. Next week, it means undoing all Wivian and Papa Ed’s (Grandma and Grandpa) doing. My mom is graciously allowing me to use her computer…

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Makes Me Sigh, Mildly Amusing


“He’s cuter than he used to be.” This was a comment that I overheard recently at a family gathering. When I realized the speaker was referring to my son, I laughed involuntarily. Not a belly laugh, but a sniff of disbelief as though I were trying to expel a gnat from my nose. Cuter than he used to be! Absurd. Her words seeped into the spongy part of my brain that processes and analyzes. I was surprised when I started to feel a little indignant. What exactly did she mean by that? That Sean wasn’t cute…

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Bloggin' Buddies, Travel Tales

Kansas City Here I Come

Last Saturday, I took my first solo trip away from Sean. I took a day trip to Kansas City to have lunch with some blogging buddies. I had been looking forward to it for more than a month. I looked forward to getting away on my own for the first time in a more than a decade and I looked forward to meeting people I only knew through the computer. I wondered if it would be like Christmas. Would all the anticipation and excitement and curiosity of what was hidden be disappointing when all was revealed?…

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Antique Junk Drawer

Mug Shots

Veronica Mitchell of Toddled Dredge tagged me with this Mug Shot meme which was started by Julie of Bookworm — both excellent writers.  If you haven’t already discovered their blogs, by all means go treat yourself. This mug became my favorite when Sean was about a year old.  As I was drinking from it one morning – one very bad Mary-Tyler-Moore-in-pajamas kind of morning – he studied it intently. Then he pointed to the dog behind the dryer and began laughing hysterically.  Once it became clear that he appreciated The Far Side, I knew we were…

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Antique Crazy, Antique Embarrassment, Mildly Amusing, Thank You Notes

Ode To Mary Tyler Moore

I left the house feeling quite pleased with myself. I was having a Mary Tyler Moore day. I had on a pair of jeans that didn’t require me to hold my breath and a brand new blouse — sunny summer yellow with snap buttons up the front. My pedicured toes were showcased in my favorite pair of black Cole Haan sandals, my one summer splurge item. And? I was having a good hair day. It was 82 degrees and the sun was spilling in through the sunroof of the car. I put on my sunglasses and…

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Makes Me Sigh, Parenting Gone Awry

The Band-Aid

Betwixt and between. This is the confounding, ill-fitting space that Sean and I occupy this summer. We are two mismatched, uncomfortable dance partners. He is tired, but doesn’t want to nap. He is hungry but doesn’t want to eat. He cries for Mommy to kiss a boo boo, then pushes me away. He wants a band-aid instead. I fetch a band-aid. I try to apply the band-aid to the invisible boo boo. For a split second I imagine he is admiring my skill, that he is pleased with my effort. I half expect him to look…

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Antique Childhood, Papa Ed

Papa Ed

I like my dad. Oh sure, I love him too. That’s a given. But I really like him. I always have. My dad and I like to hang out together. My parents have a gazebo in their back yard that is enrobed in purple clematis and hanging baskets of pink petunias in the summer. The gazebo rests in the shade of towering trees that were not much more than seedlings when I lived there. Dad and I like to sit out there in the breeze that swirls through and drink iced tea and talk. Or not.…

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Snips And Snails, Sometimes Sweet

If Only It Came In A Jar

Sean sat on the edge of the bathtub this morning watching me trying to perform a face lift on myself with a jar of Loreal ultra, energizing, firming, age-defying something or another.  It wasn’t going well. “Want me to sing you a song?” he volunteered, maybe hoping to cheer me up. “Absolutely!” I agreed. “Je-jush loves me, dis I know,” he belted out in little boy falsetto, “and Bingo was his name-oh!” Amusing and oh so wry.  The former Catholic school girl in me appreciated the Jesus-Bingo reference. And then I laughed out loud because, actually…

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Snips And Snails, Sometimes Sweet, Wivian

Mud Muffins

My mom’s parenting philosophy has always been this: Never miss an opportunity to have fun. If it didn’t hurt anything (permanently) and it was fun (and free) she would make it happen. Nothing was ever too messy or too much trouble for my mom if it meant her kids having fun. The list of crazy things she would let us do (or think up for us to do) is endless, but one of the things I especially remember is that when it was too cold to go outside, she would bring snow inside in her big…

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Antique Crazy, Mildly Amusing, Sometimes Sweet

Rear View Mirror

Everyone needs someone in their life that they can count on to level with them, to tell them when they have spinach in their teeth. The only reliable source of truth in my life right now is not my mother, not my best friend and because he has learned better over the course of nearly ten years, certainly not my husband — it is the rearview mirror in my car. Even on those days when I leave the house thinking I look not that bad for a 46-year-old woman with a toddler and too little sleep,…

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