Thursday, May 28, 2015

For Posterity: Kids Say the Darndest Things Part 2

It Is Your Destiny
When trying to use the word "destiny" in a sentence:
Fifi: You know, like, "it's your destiny", like "It's my destiny to be President."

It's All a Lie
Lolly: I know the tooth fairy isn't real.
A few moments later...
Lolly: Since I know it's not real, can I get two dollars?

Lolly: Mummy, are we white or black?... I was jus' wondering.

Laughing Gas
At the dentist, getting a cavity filled:
Fifi: I feel funny. My brain has gone astray.

Friday, May 22, 2015

For Paula For Robert

The Infinite Moment of Creation

Star collides with star
thrust from the infinite black hole
blasts explodes
swirls twists tumbles
collects grows collects spins


Sun gathers chaos
pulls bits into her orbit
swirls of stardust she sets in circles
heats cools heats cools


Life sparks from within
long lost memories of life
spark within
the stardust
life erupts tumbles forms
evolves grows swims
crawls out of water


Learns to cry
walk sing love.

And the form made from stardust fell
in love with the most beautiful
form and they gave birth to
like the debris that formed and bore
and together they learned
how to smile.

And time ticked throughout the
ticked swirled ticked tumbled
lulled quieted
and they learned
and urgency
and how to love

Until the stardust flickered
whispered goodbye
quieted lulled stilled tick

and the other
infinite black pain
an infinite black hole of pain
sadness emptiness
swirling twisting spiraling bleeding
in her heart
an impossibly



Out of the infinite black hole
a future universe bursts
swirls twists collides collects
spins collects


remembers life in its debris
long lost memories of life
nurtures evolves grows swims

crawls out of the water


Dear Paula,
When I cannot be there with you, when I cannot take a single ounce of your broken heart away from you, when I cannot hug you while you cry or wash your growing piles of laundry or listen to you tell stories or talk through the pain, know that even from far away I am here for you, shedding tears for you, loving you, caring about you.
Your friend forever,

Thursday, May 07, 2015


Driving past my favorite church sign yesterday, I was impressed by the depth of the message (if anything church sign-y can have depth).

"Thank God for others."

I like it! It was like saying God is not selfish or jealous of our human relationships, but that he recognizes our innate need for companionship, and the way we need one another to help, to guide, to encourage, to teach, to inspire. We need others in our lives to lighten the load of life, to make us laugh, to be there when we cry, to support us in hard times, and to celebrate the joys. Thank God for others indeed!

Then I drove past it and in the rear view mirror saw the other side.

Oh. They just lost an M. (And inserted a Spanish exclamation point.) Oh well. Thank God for mothers too. Happy Mother's Day.

Wednesday, May 06, 2015

Adventure Time - On A Budget

At the beginning of 2015, I declared this year the Year of Adventure. 2014 set me in a rut that I was (am) determined to get out of. Scott and I decided this year we'd do stuff, big and small, making this a year to remember.

It's jarring to think that we are already in the fifth month of 2015. What?! How?! While the big adventures we've discussed have yet to happen (we wanted to go to Washington DC for Spring Break or Texas for Easter, neither of which ended up possible), but we have succeeded in the small.

We'd gotten into a bad habit of whiling away the weekends, vegging out doing nothing but refereeing fights amongst the kids, and generally feeling pretty bored. We've changed that this year. We've gotten motivated. We've started looking for excitement anywhere we can find it - and rightly calling it "adventure", for that's what we're making of it.

One weekend we took the kids to a Scottish Festival. (Free entry)

One weekend we went to Little Rock for the Indian Festival. (Free entry)

We took them to a Superhero Horse Fundraiser. ($20 a family, all profits going to charity)

We went to an Arts and Maker Faire. ($10 each for all of us over 6 yrs, which I didn't realize, but worth every penny the oldest three of us had to pay!)

We went to the Museum of Discovery on Dollar Day. ($5 in all)

This weekend we're going to the Clinton Presidential Library to see the Dinosaurs Around the World exhibit ($20 for the family, it better be good!), and next weekend we're heading up to Fayetteville for the high school graduation party of an old wee pal (not gonna be cheap after petrol, hotel, and food, but it'll be like a mini family vacation, and we'll cut costs wherever we can).

We don't have tons of money, I can tell you that for nothing! But we've changed our priorities slightly. Instead of going out to eat when I can't be bothered to cook, we are trying to save those pennies for entry fees, searching for the free events and discount days. Food at these kind of events, while looking and smelling amazing, are usually ridiculously expensive, so we tend to bring water bottles and snacks, and perhaps a picnic lunch, to save spending $10 on a hamburger. We sometimes splurge on tiny treats, like homemade shortbread at the Scottish festival or handcrafted pottery fridge magnets at the Arts Faire, but mostly we just enjoy looking at all the things on offer and whispering to each other afterwards about how we'd never pay that for that. (Helps curb the "I WANT" urges.)

All of these little mini-adventures have been so much fun for everyone and really great for our family. And really great for improving my outlook. While the big things (like family vacations and some things I can't mention here until they actually happen!) keep not happening for various reasons (can't get dates off work or cars needs total of six new tires), the little things have made 2015 pretty adventurous. And with school holidays coming quickly upon us, I am sure there will be many more adventures to come! And hopefully without too hefty a price tag. (What is it about kids being off school and breaking the budget? All the food they consume while lounging around the house, all the activities we feel obligated to put on for them or send them to.... summer is expensive!)

Sometimes our adventures have been as small as a fire in the back yard...

... But I'm learning now that adventures don't have to be wild, exhilarating, and fantastical (or expensive) - adventures are made out of having an adventurous spirit!