me

Baby K weekend December 2021

Our grandgirl was busy this weekend, y’all!

Saturday we played in the creek behind our house. That girl loves water! So much so that she dragged me into the middle of the creek before she realized the water was up over her boots!
After dumping out the chilly water and squeezing her wet sock feet, she decided she was better off standing on the shore throwing rocks.

After dinner we watched one of Birdie’s favorite holiday shows!

What you can’t see is her dancing every time they sing about how the Grinch is so mean.

Sunday morning we were up, breakfasted, and ready to roll before nine o’clock. We wanted to take Baby K to see the National Christmas tree. The night before YBW checked on the interwebs that the trees opened at 8:30.
We were like, how perfect! We’ll go first thing before it gets too crowded and be out of the city before lunchtime.
Alas, the universe was all, haha NOPE to us.
When we got to the Ellipse, everything was closed!
I immediately got on google…and this is what I saw.

Y’all, I’ve lived here my entire life (minus eight years) and never ever have the fucking trees been closed on the weekends.
Or in the evenings.
Is this a covid thing?
I don’t even know, but I gotta tell you I was pretty damn salty about it.

It was quite pretty though.
This is the first time in my memory that there are pressies under the tree.
But no trains!
I was disappointed, but Baby K had a blast being in DC!
She was in her buggy at first, but then she decided to walk. Across 17th Street. The kid is a natural at navigating crosswalk signals. (while holding hands with Birdie and Papa, natch)

We went next to Old Town Alexandria.
Our plan to let her walk to her little heart’s content.
Her Papa and I got coffee, she got a great big chocolate chip cookie and off we went down King Street towards the river.
Of course we had to stop at the huge Christmas tree in Market Square at City Hall!
Baby K nommed her cookie, ran through the square, and climbed up and down each set of steps and the ramp on the stage right in front of City Hall.
Sadly, our outing was cut short when she had an accident.
We got her all dried up and put on clean clothes, but her shoes were wet, so it was time to go home.

Where she built with blocks then had pizza and salad for dinner.

Oh! NEWS FLASH!
She doesn’t call me B anymore.
She says Birdie now. Only it sounds like Boo-wie.
So, Baby K’s weekend at ‘Boowie’ and Papa’s house had it’s ups and downs, but being together is what it’s all about.
All the JOY!

Categories: me | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

first night blessings

Hanukkah began at sundown yesterday.
YBW joined me in saying the prayers and lighting the candles.

I love the first night of Hanukkah most of all because of the special prayer said only that night.

Thanks be to you, Lord our God, Ruler of the Universe, for keeping us alive and in good health and for bringing us together.

I’m not actively religious, but I do have beliefs.
Lighting these candles and saying these prayers on the first night of Hanukkah, I feel down deep in me the connection to my ancestors. The ones who lit these candles, and the ones who lit their Advent wreaths.
I’m so grateful that we are alive and in good health and together, especially in this season which I love so dearly.
My wish is all y’all feel it too!

Categories: me | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

finding the right balance

If you’ve read this blog for any length of time, you know Thanksgiving is absolutely not my thing. But, Thanksgiving is Thing 1’s most favorite holiday. When the our dining table arrived, Thing 1 said, “You know, Momma, our house is really small. And yours is big. And you have that big island and new table. So, if I cooked and cleaned, would you host Thanksgiving?”
Without hesitation I told her yes, I also told her I had to talk with YBW.
I only got as far as “and yours is big” in relaying her question before he said “Yes!”

YBW then reached out to each of our other three kids and invited them for Thanksgiving. And when I say invited, what I mean is he didn’t actually give them a choice as much as he was like, I want you here, please and thank you.
And if you actually knew my husband, you’d know that’s not his typical M.O.
The boys and Girlfriend L are confirmed.
Thing 1, Husband N, and Baby K are confirmed.
YBW’s brother, his wife, and our nephew are also confirmed.
Thing 2 and Boyfriend M cannot be here.

YBW and Thing 1 are planning to do all the work. I’m planning to watch the parade and drink apple cider mimosas and play with Baby K.
Though I’ll make the cranberries and probably the stuffing. And maybe the gravy, because it’s Thing G’s fave. Though Thing 1 could absolutely make him some gravy he’ll love.

I’m excited about three of our four kids being in the same place at the same time.
I’m excited about two of our kids’ partners being here with us.
I’m excited to welcome my brother in law’s fam to our home.
I’m disappointed Thing 2 won’t be here, but what she’s doing instead is actually much more important.

I have real, and deeply rooted anxious feels surrounding Thanksgiving and I’m working hard to reconcile those feelings with my excitement of us all being together.
These opposing feels create unbalance in me, and I want the joy to outweigh those feelings of discomfort.
I don’t like Thanksgiving, but I love being surrounded by my family.
I’m hopeful to find the right balance.
But even if I don’t, I’ll always have the parade.
And that’s fine by me.

Categories: me | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Baby K weekend – November 2021

Last weekend was our Baby K weekend!
This kid, y’all!
At two and a half, she’s at that peculiar developmental place where she’s about seventy percent sweet like candy, and thirty percent rotten to the core. (she’s not really rotten…she’s appropriately moving between two and three)

She was already with her Papa when I got home from school Friday. She came running (the long way) around the island screeching, “BEEEEEE!”
All! The! Hugs!

It poured with rain so we didn’t make a trip to the playground.
Instead, we built with blocks.

Lately she’s all about playing veterinarian. Even though she left her doctor kit at home she still made sure Big Bird had a check up.

Mike and Josie came to visit Sunday morning.
Baby K was excited to have new grown-ups to play with.
Mike brought her one of his favorite books, Caps For Sale.
She loves this story, and does an enthusiastic “Tsz tsz tsz”!
Josie took this picture of us enjoying it together.

We took her home Sunday after her nap.
She was mad and sad about going home.
I told her that her mommy and daddy missed her and were ready for her to come home. She wanted to stay at “B-Papa house”.
She was content when Papa carried her down to the car and when I asked who she was going to hug first, she told me, “Cats!”
Thing 1 came out the front door when we arrived and Baby K went running across the yard shouting, “Momma!” But did not hug her mother.
I’m not sure she actually hugged the cats, but she was excited to see the dogs.

One weekend a month in which we get to play with, and be responsible for our granddaughter is absolutely one of our most favorite things!

Categories: me | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

favorite things 11.11.21

Time for a game of favorites.
Y’all wanna play?

What’s your:

favorite ethnic food
Afghan food – specifically this little hole in the wall called Kabul Kabab House in Bristow

favorite hiding spot when you need time alone
When I was a little girl, it was high up in the branches of the maple tree in our front yard.
As a grown up girl, it’s in my car.

favorite type of bird

favorite boss
Dr Jeff – I ran his chiropractic practice and he paid me peanuts, but he made me laugh.

favorite childhood movie
The Scarecrow is still my favorite!

favorite magazine to read
depending on my mood it’s either the The Atlantic or Southern Living

favorite thing about summer
being at the ballpark

music venue
This is a no-win tie between two great DC venues: The Lincoln Theatre and The Anthem

casual wear
a sweater, jeans, and boots

pizzeria
Tony’s in Bristow – their lasagna pizza is my all time favorite
(lasagna ingredients: seasoned ground beef, tomato sauce, ricotta, and mozzarella, on pizza instead of with noodles)

What about y’all?
What are your favorites?

Categories: me | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

would you rather – partie quatorze

travel the world for a year on a shoestring budget or stay in only one country for a year but live in luxury
this is a tricky one…
I’m not sure a year long enough to see the entire world, especially on a limited budget. But, spending an entire year in one country would provide quite the opportunity to explore every aspect…I’m looking at you, Italy.
I choose staying luxuriously in one country

every third thought you have be out loud or never be alone no matter what you are doing
every third thought
After a while I’d learn to manage the timing and not express too many inappropriate thoughts…

take an all expenses paid dream vacation every year for a month or have the job of your dreams
Another tricky one!
Why do I do this to myself?
While a free month long vacay sounds divine, real life is in those other eleven months.
I choose dream job!

be a successful artist or a successful business owner
successful artist
Unless…my successful business involved my art…?
I don’t think this is a have your cake and eat it too sort of situation…so I’ll stick with my initial answer.

be covered in fur or covered in scales
fur
even though I’d be hot covered in fur, the idea of being covered in scales freaks me out

What about y’all?
What would you rather?

Categories: me | Tags: , , , | 6 Comments

in the loft

I finally am completely unpacked in the loft!
Because of the way it’s shaped, it easily divided into two specific areas in the larger space.

When you first come up the stairs you see my library space.

This is the nonfiction bookshelf.
Top, second, and third shelves down the right hand side is all journals. (is three shelves of journals not enough? too much? just right? the world may never know…)

Turning to the left you see my creative space.

I’ve got a couple creative projects I’m ready to tackle, and these tables are the perfect space to get started.

This view is sitting on that tiny stool in the previous photo looking toward the library space.

This the fiction bookshelf.
All four shelves across the bottom are picture books and I am here for it!

YBW helped me hang all the art.
I’m still finding places for small photos and tchotchkes on the shelves.

I spent the majority of the afternoon and evening last Friday in the chair in the foreground finishing a book called The People We Keep.
Now if I can just figure out how to write comfortably in this space…

Categories: around the house, me | Tags: , , , , , , | 11 Comments

Halloween kitty

Since we moved into our new home, YBW and I have seen only a handful of kids.
Maybe ten kids total? They all look to be middle school age and younger.
This created some debate regarding Halloween.

My favorite thing is to sit on the porch and wait for the kids to come. Even the big high school age kids, if they’ve put forth any effort to ‘dress up’ I’m all about them having candy. Let them hold on to their childhood a bit longer.

Halloween in this new neighborhood would leave me disappointed and trust me when I say, nobody wants that. Not to mention all the leftover candy…and trust me when I say, neither of us needs to eat all that candy.

So we decided we’d go out to celebrate Halloween with Baby K.
Her mommy wants to make group costumes work as long as humanly possible, and this year she went ‘old school’ with ‘traditional’ costumes. You know, witch, mummy, vampire, black cat, ghost…that kind of thing. Picture watching the Great Pumpkin…

YBW and I picked up pizza and went out to their house, excited about trick or treating.

Baby K was a kitty!

Thing 1, Husband N, and Baby K went out for a bit, and when they made it back around the block, the stopped off at the porch. But, Baby K wasn’t finished yet! She asked that “B-Papa” take her out for a bit.
Y’all! We had the best fun walking with that girl!
She said “Trick or treat!” and “Thank you!” and even met another (bigger) girl dressed as a cat.
At one house there were a ton of big kids. The family was hosting a party. After our little kitty trick or treated, thanked the lady and man, she started after the big kids to join the party! We were like, um, this is a party for big kids, and you’re not quite a big kid just yet. She wasn’t hearing it and wanted to hang out with those teenage girls!
When we came down the hill and she saw her house, she said, “MOMMA! DADDY!” and dragged me along to get home faster.

She danced on the porch and ate a third of her body weight in candy.
I had the honor of tucking her in at bed time.
YBW and I came home full of pizza and a whole lot of Baby K love!
It was a mighty fine Halloween!

Categories: me | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

finding a comfy writing space

I haven’t been writing.
It’s been over a month since y’all got anything other than a tune for Tuesday, and that’s because I oftentimes plan them out in advance.

I had sort of decided I haven’t been writing because I’m spending my time and energy in the final throws of getting us settled. I’m also spending a great deal of my time and energy at school.

But the other day, I realized something outside the boundaries of my time and energy. I haven’t found a place in our new home where I feel comfortable to write.

The loft is a gorgeous light-filled room in which I made for myself a library and creative space.
I’m not one to sit at a desk and write.
In the past I’ve sat curled up in a big club chair with my laptop. I no longer write that way because of the negative impact my neck and shoulder from reaching across my body to use the keyboard on the arm of the chair.
So, I don’t like to sit at the desk, and I can’t really be in my chair the way I like. This means I’m not actually using my computer much at all.

Before I finished setting up my nest in the loft, I used my computer at the kitchen island. To be perfectly honest, I rather loved writing in the kitchen.
The practical aspect of that is my computer can’t always be on the island. And I never found a convenient place to keep it when I wasn’t using it.

Since I finished getting (mostly) settled in the loft, I moved my computer up there.
Literally only touched it to move it.

Perhaps this gorgeous space made for creating doesn’t fit the way I like to write?
Perhaps I haven’t tried it on enough to see how it fits?
I finally unpacked everything and nearly have it set up the way I want.
I need to actually live in the space instead of always being in it unpacking and getting settled.

Whichever way it shakes out, the island is always there in the kitchen waiting for me…

Categories: around the house, me | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

I’m cool with that

School started last week and for the first time since February of 2020, I’ve spend more time in a school building than out of one.
I subbed in French I and II for eighth graders.
The trickiest bit was there’s no teacher. No lesson plans.
Just me and thirty kids, and I don’t actually speak the language. My knowledge of French exists because Thing 1 and Thing 2 took French in high school.

The first day of school we did some get-to-know-you activities. Each subsequent day, I flew by the seat of my pants finding all the English speaking bits from the textbook.
Writing lesson plans isn’t actually under the job description of a substitute teacher…I’m just sayin’.
But, I survived!
At the end of the week, I met the retired French teacher who will be taking over the class until they can hire someone permanently. She reassured me I managed beautifully, and even showed me in the standard of learning that I’d already covered required material.
Go me!
But really, go those kids!
They were patient and engaged and perfectly willing to adapt.
I’ll see them twice more this week and two more times in September and already have more than enough lessons planned.

I’m heading over to ‘my old school’ this afternoon to teach in a fourth grade class, and they’ve already asked me if I’m willing to work temporarily in the front office.
I’m over here like, here’s my availability, let’s see what we can work out.

What’s great about all this is that I’m feeling good about being back to school.
What’s not great about all this is that I’m not getting as much done at home.
I am so close to being settled and feeling at home in this house…
We’ve already scheduled Baby K’s Birdie and Papa weekends through December. We need to do a few more things to ensure her safety here for extended periods of time.
She’s SO ready! When we were at her house yesterday, she kept saying, “B-Papa house!”

We’re going to make it work, because we’re just as enthusiastic about her being here with us as she is.

I’m making time for the important things.
Creating a home.
Being at school.
Writing these words.

Making time to do what I love.
I’m cool with that.

Categories: me | Tags: , , , , | 6 Comments

Blog at WordPress.com.

Starting Over

Because there's never enough time to do it right the first time but there's always enough time to do it over

Stories I've Never Told...

(...and some I have)

Faith + Gratitude = Peace + Hope

When I was young my dad would always say, "Crystal, you can choose your attitude." One day I chose to believe him.

debsdespatches.wordpress.com/

Reader, Writer, Photographer, Random Scribbler

Snippets of SnapDragon

Welcome to my cauldron of creative musings.

Encouragement for you!!

Need some encouragement--read this!!

To Write or not to Write and What to Write

#shortstories #thoughts #reflections

Thinker Boy: Blog & Art

by Troy Headrick

Invisibly Me

Live A Visible Life Whatever Your Health

A Teacher's Reflections

Thirty Years of Wonder

Life and Random Thinking

An old dog CAN blog

charles french words reading and writing

An exploration of writing and reading

Young Lion

Life Is All About The View

Sawblades In Your Walkman

effervescing with muchness

History Tech

History, technology, and probably some other stuff

Tales from the mind of Kristian

Visit the darkest crevices of my mind, dare to tread where many fear to go. You may find something interesting or you may find a mirror to your soul.

walkingtheclouds

where the clouds may lead

Meditations in Motion

Running and life: thoughts from a runner who has been around the block

Bitchin’ in the Kitchen

..because the thoughts that fall, kicking and screaming from my head need a safe place to land..

Finding French Charming

Finding True Love.. Even After Forty

Thought Box

Sweet...Bitter...Happy...Sad...All thoughts trapped in a Box...

M.A. Lossl

An author's life, books, and historical research

Pointless Overthinking

Understanding ourselves and the world we live in.

Water for Camels

Encouragement and Development for Social Workers and Those with a Mission of Helping Others

%d bloggers like this: