Thursday, May 28, 2009

The Most Important Job In the World

I have a totally fancy friend. I have talked about her before. She is a famous fabric designer. She sells her designs to Oscar de la Rente. She has a store in Istanbul where she lives. She travels the world to stock the store. She is very impressive. Since we have been friends for forever and a day I am lucky enough to be able to go hang with her in Turkey during the summer.

Each time I have gone we have had dinner with interesting foreign people who have interesting foreign lives and it's great fun. The last time my daughter and I were there we went out with my friend and her boyfriend and a very odd couple that weren't married to each other (although his wife did show up at the restaurant and start yelling at the them, but that's a whole other blog post, although I will say while the man was getting yelled at by his wife and his girlfriend was sitting at the table looking uncomfortable my friend Elizabeth and I took that opportunity to eat the rest of his food off his plate). At any rate there was also another friend of Elizabeth's named Mashala.

Now since none of you are Turkish (except you Asude) I will tell you about the name Mashala. It's not really a name, it's more something you say when like a baby is born and you are wishing it all the best or for God to be with it, or something like that. You look at the baby all goofy and spread your arms out wide and say, "Mashala." Now you can't say the only thing I have taught you is a one handed hand stand (or did you teach that to me?) reeling it back in, so I think since his name is Mashala he is super smart and knows what he's talking about. Just like my sons name is Chase so he's good at playing tag.

So we are out to dinner and my fancy friend with her high falooting job is sitting there and Mashala asks me what I do besides be the mother to the incredibly beautiful Saige. I say, "Well, Mashala (just cause I like how it sounds) I teach yoga."
"TEACH YOGA? You teach yoga? Really?"
"I do," I say.
His eyes get all wide and he says with more conviction than I've heard people say their wedding vows, "I think teaching yoga is the most important job in the world!"
"Me too!" I agree.
Elizabeth rolls her eyes.
"Really," he says in that lovely Turkish accent, "It is so important for people to breathe and to stretch and to do yoga, there is much stress, is that the word you use? Much stress. People need yoga teachers." he says.

I'm going one step further and saying, the world needs yoga teachers. The universe needs yoga teachers.
We also need a designated siesta time and cocktail hour.
Yoga teachers, siesta time and cocktail hour. That's all we need. That and this ashtray. That's all we need. And this chair....

Was this okay Twist and Kathy?

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Stupid Questions

I have completely admitted before that my parental skills might be somewhat lacking. I let my kids listen to questionable music (if I enjoy it).

Not only do I enjoy the Will Ferrell/Owen Wilson genre of movies but it is normal to have lines from Starsky and Hutch, Talledaga Nights and occasionally Old School among others used in casual conversation in my home.

I let my kids sleep in almost every Monday (I do my best to get them to school on time.-to my credit).

I let my daughter have double sleepovers almost every weekend.

I overlook curse words from boys if they are only in the company of boys. I draw the line at mixed company.

The list could go on and on but I don't want any of you calling some sort of lackadaisical parental unit. That's just a lot of hassle I don't feel like dealing with.

You know what else I hate dealing with? Stupid ass questions that parents ask in school meetings when there are 200 other people in the room. Who doesn't understand yet when you have been to 7+ years of these meetings about asking on YOUR OWN TIME?
E mail them.
Stay after.
Place a phone call.
I swear to God the minute the speaker person asks if there are any questions in the room, inadvertently my eyes look down and roll, I start to doodle if I am lucky enough to have a pen and I probably mumble under my breath. I don't mean to be a bitch (yes I do) but there is such a thing as a stupid question. Who ever said there wasn't is an idiot.
Tonight at the middle school meeting after 17 other inane questions someone asked, "Um, can you tell me how much the text books weigh?"

You know what went through my head? "Shut up. Shut up. Shut up. We've already been here to long. I'm bored. Who cares how much they weigh? How much do you weigh? Shut up."

You know why?
I'm a bad parent.

As per Kathy's suggestion: the one way to solve this dilemma with stupid question askers...

Monday, May 25, 2009

A Much Needed Laugh

My last post title was something about it being Monday. It's Monday now and that post seems like a lifetime ago. I took a little vacation from the internet. It's gorgeous outside, there's gardening to do. I do recall saying a couple posts ago that I hate outside work. I changed my mind about that this week. I like it. I like picking those weeds and making it look clean. I like trimming things back and raking the leaves from way under the bushes. I especially like planting lavender. I love lavender. I like hot pink flowers. I like the fresh air. I like seeing my neighbors outside after a long Winter and a rainy Spring. I like the whole thing.

So that's what I did.

It was one of those weeks I didn't sleep much. I pulled a muscle in my calf so that makes running very uncomfortable. I have a million things going through my mind all the time. It doesn't stop. Running makes it stop, when I can't do that it makes me a little jumpy. I found that if I just put my headphones on and listened to some music and pull some weeds it can have a small degree of the same effect. I sang while I worked outside. My dog Mickey sat with me the whole time and let the Spring breeze blow through his freshly sheared sheep fur. I tried to talk my kids into helping when they would come ask me something, not a lot of interest there. Oh well.

It's hot at night. The air is on but it's still hot. It makes it hard to sleep. I want time to stand still but I also want it to pass. My big dog started having seizures a few weeks ago. It scares me and makes me sad.
Today four friends of my daughters that went to pre school together were over. They are all so tall. They are young ladies. It makes me happy but sad. Bittersweet.

That's where I've been Twist and Kathy. Thinking, not running, weeding, worrying about my dog, watching my children grow faster than the weeds in my front flower bed.

Which brings me to the title of this post. So tonight I'm sitting outside with my dear friend. My kids were with us, talking and joking and just being there. It was a very nice ending to the long weekend.

Then they started bickering. Something about Chase throwing grapes in the pool and wearing shorts to swim instead of a bathing suit to the girls could see his "butt crack."
"Time for bed," I said. "When you start bickering you're outta here."
Chase was tired. He kissed me and went right up.
Saige walked over between Ashley and I, she started telling us something. She leaned over and kissed me on the cheek then she leaned in to Kiss Ash and it was at the moment I saw it...

The longest toilet paper tail I have seen in a good long while hanging right out of the back of her shorts. Ah yes, juvenile but funny none the less. This brought on a lot of laughter and some sage advice for Saige.
"Don't be THAT girl," Ashley said.
"What girl?" asked Saige.
"The one at the wedding that gets their dress stuck in the back of their pantyhose and walks around with their butt showing to everyone all night cause no one wants it to end," Ashley informs her.
"Oh dear," Saige said still a little red from the "tail" incident.
"Talk about butt cracks...."

Monday, May 18, 2009

And It's Only Monday...

I have been reading all these articles on the Internet about cyber harassment and tech harassment. Kids being cruel to one another by the Internet or by the cell phone. Jesus, like kids and teenagers don't have enough problems? They need someone bullying them with txt messages? It astounds me how vicious kids can be. I don't understand why they have to be so mean.
Seriously, stop it.

I'm going to tell you something, this was happening on a low degree to my daughter. Some little girl was bullying her in school and started txting her, on Friday she sent this a couple times, "just so you know, I hate you." There is nothing I would have rather done than gone all Rebecca De Mornay in The Hand That Rocks the Cradle on her. For real. I can take a lot myself, I will shut up, shut down, walk away when it's me. When it's my kids (right Jen? you still there Big Mouse?) it's a whole other ball game...

So I called the Mother of the girl. This had been going on for long enough. My daughter had asked me not to do anything. I didn't at first because she said she would be embarrassed.Then the txt messages started. Honestly, as a mother, if my child was harassing someone else I would want to know. I think we all have to stick together in this day and technological age. Kids send indecent pictures and don't get into college, they send mean txts and the recipient has committed suicide. I don't think it's being a tattletale. I think it's being responsible.

Like Marguerite says, "Each of us had more power over the world than we can imagine," use it for good.
I try to make it so clear to my children, especially my daughter, because I dvr Oprah and watch it on occasion. It's scary out there.

I have an eleven and a half year old GIRL.

Then Password is... Vigilance.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Little Altars Everywhere

I spent a lot of time yesterday making a little altar for my daughter. I made it in a glass plant thing that I got a long time ago. During Christmas I have little Christmas stuff that goes in there. There has been candles and some other odds and ends I put in there from time to time. I recently rearranged stuff and moved it into the kitchen. It had nothing in it. I asked my friend Ashley if I should put actual plants in it. She said I'd kill them and that was not only irresponsible but mean. She had a point. While I was running around like a Micken with my head cut off on Saturday to baseball games and picture days and friends and prom taking pictures and pizza runs and everything else Ashley was at my house. She made a little altar on a table in my living room. I have about a million things to do this with. Yesterday I decided to do one in the glass plant thing.

It's all about Saige. There is the picture of her in her princess costume from years ago. I surrounded it with angels and pictures of my mother and Saige's great grandmothers. There are symbols of love and happiness and success and friends. There are all sorts of things in it. I love it and no plants died for it.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

The Micken Rolled In Something Dead

He sure did. I was out weeding. This is enough to get a gasp out of a couple of you. Weeding is outside work. I usually frown upon that. I shake my head and whisper a very polite but firm, "No." For good reason. If I touch the wrong thing I break out in big yellow bubbles all over any exposed skin and then I have to take steroids. "Convenient." Perhaps. But true.

Yesterday I had enough. The never ending rain has brought more weeds than I have ever seen. I decided to do some "outside work" so I got some gloves and some clippers and starting cutting and pulling.

Mickey was out with me rolling around, looking so happy. I thought he was just so glad to be out front with me in the sun. He came running over to me, wiggling and shaking and his whole head was black and he smelled like I had kept a dead animal in the trash can under the counter for a week. I gagged like my friend Ashley does, which is really annoying.

He got a bath. It was gross.

I was right. Outside work is stupid.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

I'm A Bad Parent

Kind of.

I realized today that my sense of humor can sometimes be that of a ten year old boys. I don't think that's good.

Today was a field trip with Chase's class. We went to the historical museum of our town and a walking tour. Let me tell you something, I never knew half of what went on here. It's pretty impressive, if you like history. I like to know what's happened in condensed form. The short version. Going through castles and churches and walking tours bore me like they would a child. I also only can sit through about half a Broadway play until I start to fidget. I do feel guilty about this, like I wish I could gather up some more interest. I can't.

The first part of the tour was fun. It was all about quilts. They had all these antique quilts that looked like it was impossible that a person instead of a machine made. There was one that this woman who was crippled and only her fingers worked and there was over 10,000 pieces in it. Insane. Seriously. It was cool. Then after all the quilts there was an art project for the kids. I helped Chase. That was fun.

The second half of the day was the walking tour. First it was raining. It was cold. The tour guide kept pointing out "datestones" that showed the buildings were from forever ago. I know some people love this (Hi Mom) but not me. I did have to act interested though because I saw the exact same far off look that I get in Chase's eyes about 5 minutes in. My little angel, he was bored. Bored until the tour guide that was about 98 years old started sneezing. Sneezing and talking at the same time. My group was 5 boys. The first time she sneezed and keep speaking they all grinned at each other. The second time one kid spit gatorade out by accident. For some reason, perhaps my own boredom or the look on his face made me start laughing. Any of my friends can attest to the fact that once I start laughing I can't stop. I have to picture myself in a plane crashing or getting stuck in a well or being surrounded by snakes like Cher in The Witches of Eastwick or something like that to make it stop. I'm not trying to be rude. I don't want to be disrespectful, it just won't stop.

Fortunately I was at the back of the line. No one noticed but my boys. We came to then end of the tour. My chewing gum that had served as my lunch was like cardboard. I pulled it out and it got stuck to my finger. I tried to flick it off and it landed on one of the boys sweatshirts and stuck there. More rounds of laughter out of my little hooligans. Whoops.

They were all riled up. We had 20 minutes left. The museum people wanted us to walk through the museum with all the antique furniture and delicate things. I didn't think my group would make it through without breaking something. I okayed with the teacher then took them in the auditorium and let them get on the stage and play charades. After a while another Mom came in and said they shouldn't be on the stage. My bad.

On the way home Chase said, "Thanks for coming today Mom." I told him I had fun, it was really fun. He said, "Tomorrow if my teacher asks what my favorite part of the field trip was, I'm going to tell her it was playing charades."

Maybe not a bad parent, maybe just a little childish...

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

The Talk

My daughter came home from school yesterday with a little bag in her hand a secretive look on her face. I didn't see what was in her hand at first. I said, "Hey, how was your day?" She just nodded at me. "What? Are you okay?" I ask. She shakes her head 'yes' and says, "Hold on, I don't want Chase to hear."
She goes about her after school routine, throws her book bag on the counter, gets a little snack, starts fielding the "who will I play?" calls that are coming to her cell phone but doesn't let go of that bag.
I went to sit outside to because it was finally warm enough. She comes out to the patio, sits down and says, "Well, we had the talk in school today." Ahh, the talk. She hands me the bag and says, "Take the pamphlets, they're for you. In case you need to read stuff. The other stuff is mine." I'm quite sure I am going to need to brush up on stuff. One day Oprah had this whole show about talking to your kids about sex and there was some stuff I didn't know. It's like 5th grade homework.
"They didn't talk about sex though, just your body and how it changes." she informed me.
"Okay, we'll do that. Okay?" I asked.
"Fine. Whenever," she answered me.
I guess this shouldn't surprise me. She has always been very open.
Long before I ever kept an online journal I kept art journals of things my children did and said. This is a page from one 5 1/2 years ago.

Time Flies... that always reminds me of "turn, turn, turn" song or verse. Up until now I actually thought that was a Byrds original. Stupid non church going me... a time to learn to walk and a time to have the talk, they managed to seem like they came in days of each other...

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Which Came First? Part B

As a little recap from yesterday's bizarrely stupid post about why Twist has chickens living with her. For those who don't read the comments, here is the answer.

twist said...
OK, we got the chickens for their feathers - so I could make more window treatments. We will not be milking them, though our hens are dark and we're told they would, therefore, provide chocolate milk starting at around 16 weeks. When they've outlived their usefulness, we're going to give them to Amy's little dog and see if we get mickens.

The Elusive "Micken" with Star, Biggie Smalls and Tupac.

The Micken is a lover not a fighter.
The Micken does not lay eggs. But does lay "babies." ;) Poor babies.
The Micken is a one of a kind.
The Micken crossed the road because he needed to pee on the mailbox across the street. And the tree. And the bush.
The Micken pees a lot.
The Micken half crows and half barks to wake people up.
Which came first the Micken or the egg? What egg? I don't see any egg. Don't be stupid.
The Micken is real. For real real.
The Micken is in the hizzle.
The Micken loves you.
And You Tom the lazy steroid taking slacker. The Micken totally loves you. He loves all of Gods creatures.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Which Came First?

There is a lot of information that I don't know about chickens. I never knew that I didn't know this until tonight. Don't judge me. I'm not a farmer.

"So does Twist really have chickens in her house?" Heather asks.
"She sure does. Right in her kitchen. They're big too. Like emus or ostriches or pterodactyls." I answer.
"What are they for? Why do they have them? Are they going to eat them?" she asked.
"Not unless she wants her kids to need a whole lot of therapy." I say. "I don't know what they're for. I think they're going to lay eggs. No wait, they can't, there is no rooster."
"They can still lay eggs," Heather says.
"How? They're all girls." I ask.
"They only need the rooster to fertilize it. I think." Heather replies.
"Huh? I don't get that. What's in the eggs then?" I'm being honest here. I have no idea how this works. When I think about it it does seem to make sense because chickens lay a lot of eggs, that rooster would be really busy. I just never thought about this before.
"There's still an egg. It just can't become a chick." Heather answers.
"What? What's in it then? Is there still yolk?" this seems insane to me.
"Yes, it just can't ever be a chicken."
"Do people eat roosters or just chickens?" I do ask this. I'm slightly embarrassed to admit it.
"I think so, you know how there are Tom turkeys and... what's the female one?" Heather says.
"I don't even know what you're talking about. Tom who? I asked you if people ate roosters or do they only eat chickens?" I say stupidly cause don't get me wrong, i know this whole conversation is asinine and I'm not even telling the worst of it.
"I think roosters and hens all fall under the umbrella of the chicken family."she says.
"Huh, good point. I forgot all about the whole hen thing."
Then it's Heather's turn. "Why don't chicken's give milk?" she says.
"What do they eat? Do you think they nurse?"
"I don't think so, I've never seen chickens with teets and I think they eat they stuff the farmer sprinkles on the floor."
"Good point."

So I just google this. Apparently, the hen doesn't need a rooster to lay eggs. When a hen is about 6 weeks old she will just start laying them. Like very smart Heather said, a rooster will just fertilize them. So it will never be a chick if the rooster wasn't there. So here is another question. Does a vegetarian who doesn't eat eggs believe in stem cell research? Just like, which came first, the chicken or the egg? Which did come first? I flip flop on this. I say egg, no chicken, no it's the egg, no no, definitely the chicken. Egg. Chicken. Egg.

Other interesting chicken facts:
Chickens can have sex changes. So can ducks and peacocks.
It takes an egg 21 days to hatch.
The baby chick eats the yolk before it cracks out of the shell.

I'm like Sue with all my smarty knowledge. You can thank me later.

Monday, May 4, 2009

Rainy Daze

It is so green out there. I think the trees behind my house are about to eat my fence. The lawn looks like a big green flokati rug and the weeds in the flower beds could possibly lead to a land of magic beans.

Sports are canceled. Dogs stay inside. It's harder to get things done. Normal things. It's just so rainy.

I tend to get obsessively involved with projects during long periods of rain like this. You really don't want to go outside so what else do you do? Turn on the music, light some candles and think of rainy activities.

Saige changed her whole room around yesterday. Chase talked Marc into buying him some sort of air pellet gun. Like most things they do together, I'd rather just not know. I'll go with decorating and working on my computer and sifting through collections of things.

Today I went through a lot of books. Kids books and adult books. I love looking at things I haven't seen in a while. I like looking at book collections almost as much as music collections. I think it gives the biggest hint of who someone is by seeing what books they read. I am (at least) a second generation book collector. My Mom always had tons of books. She was always reading. In fact I remember I spent a better part of my childhood saying, "Mom, Mom, Mom, Mom." I sounded like that teacher in Ferris Buellers Day Off. It was hard to get her attention when she was reading. Now that I have children I understand. Completely.

Besides the NYT bestsellers and the Jane Green/Jennifer Weiner genre chick lit my books are mostly on Art and doing Art and Yoga and doing Yoga, there are a bunch of quotation books thrown in there and quite a few decorating books and some on running and a handful on Buddhism and some Art therapy and Psychology left over from my short stint in grad school. That's pretty much who I am, right there. Oh and all my childhood Roald Dahl books. And Narnia and Harry Potter...

This was the first thing I read when I opened the first Art Journaling book. However Walt meant it I thought it was a little sign that was a reminder that the rain will stop. Like everything, it is only temporary. And then we will have pretty flowers and the bright yellow shiny sun.

“Wash the gum from our eyes and dress ourselves for the dazzle of the light.”
- Walt Whitman

Or maybe the light is right there in front of you all the time. All you have to do is recognize it.


The word Abracadabra comes from an ancient Aramaic expression, "I speak as I create."

How's that for magical?
I like magic. I like spiritual stuff. I like past lives, angels, clairvoyants, reiki masters and long walks on the beach.

I don't like...when dogs get sick, the smell of wet dogs or muddy footprints.

I think I am going to start using the term abracadabra a lot more in my everyday conversation. I am going to say it as I am whipping up a breakfast feast for my children. I am going to say it as I write this blog, I am going to say it before I decide the flow of my next yoga class and I am even going to say it as I write notes to the school explaining why my kids are late today. I will be honest but creative because the reason they are going to be late is it is raining and I am letting them sleep in. Is that a valid reason for lateness? A rainy Monday morning. I'm not sure. I think it is. I can't be sure though, I threw away that school handbook years ago. It was very bulky.

My Mom used to give us "Personal Days," when we were kids. Days where we just stayed home from school and watched Gilligans Island and played tag around her room. We weren't sick. She just thought we needed a little personal time. I love that. I am more about a little sleeping in because it seems the schools give a lot of days off just because.

So, Abracadabra have a great day. Abracadabra stop the rain. Abracadabra do my laundry.