Self control starts with….OMG GREAT BIG PUMPKINS!!!

I have a challenge with impulsivity. Actually I have no challenge with impulsivity at all. If impulse strikes, so do I! I guess the challenge is in developing some. A fete I have yet to accomplish.

On the way home from work yesterday I decided to stop by the market to pick a few things up for the weekend in hopeful anticipation of children stopping by to eat my food. It’s a cheap ploy to lure them home but it works.

I work the overnight shifts at a hospital so coming home, feeding critters and diving right into bed to get “a full nights rest” by 3pm is important.

But this day I decided go shave less than an hour off my sleep schedule to grab edible items. I didnt make it 10 feet from my car when I spotted them.

Big, huge, gorgeously enormous pumpkins winking seductively at me in the early morning light of the parking lot.

I’ll just grab one or two…
My FIRST attempt through the store ended with exactly zero things to eat because the basket was piled high with pumpkins AND mums. I had to pay for them, load them into the car, and headed back for a second attempt at purchasing the actual food I was there for.

When all was said and done, the back of the car was piled full of pumpkins, mums, a cinnamon scented broomstick and exactly one bag of groceries.

Food (in bag) to “OOOOH!!! Look at THOSE!!!” Items ratio obviously needs work.

And that one little hour off of my sleep? Yeah, no. That turned into full fledged outdoor thing. Me just quietly going about being AWESOME and decorating with pumpkins. And just like that it was 1pm. My eyes were bloodshot, my feet were wet and cold, my hands to my elbows were covered in dirt.

“I’ll just cut a little of the decorative grass to tie to the fence posts….itll take no time at all…..”

I can, you know, stop. I can stop any time I want to. I do not have a problem. Well, the problem is I just dont want to.

And yes, yes I did swing by on the way home today for just a few more pumpkins to round out the piles.

I can stop anytime I wanna.


My favorite girl since forever and a heartbeat

My favorite girl since forever and a heartbeat. The flower of my garden. Her name means “light”. And she is. She both delights my heart, and she lights my heart.

She once picked every orange flower she could find in our yard and brought the beautiful posies to me curled up in bed. “I know you’re blue today and orange is the opposite of blue so I picked every orange flower I could find for you to make you happy”.

That is my child. My youngest. My beautiful
and earth shaking, storm chasing, peacemaking young woman.

Tomorrow is her last first day of school. It’s our last first day of school because tomorrow she starts her senior year.

I’m a mix and a wash of feelings, orange ones and blue ones. I welcome them all and let them each have their moment.

It’s really here. She’s ready. She’s more than ready. It just all takes off from here. I don’t want to miss a single moment of her. My favorite girl since forever and a heartbeat.


Not really a wait for help kind of woman

I have a history of diving into projects without much thought apart from “this really needs to be fixed, painted, built, cooked, moved”.

I don’t take the time to research, gather all the necessary items, wait for help. I just dive in like a fool trusting that the universe totally has my back. I’m the trust fall champ of the world.

This has led to my family cringing at my use of “banging rocks” while hammering, despite all the tools out back in the shed. Why go dig out a hammer when this nice, lopsided and unwieldy heavy rock is laying so close to my reach?

Why wait for any one of my naturally monkey skilled climbers to come home and get the big ladder when I have this perfectly slanted so I can slide out onto it roof to hang lights for the holidays? If it’s my time, it’s my time and at least the house will look pretty. My family amd friends are shaking their heads so we’ll just agree to disagree and I’ll get started on that next just caught my eye thing.

I do have lines I generally speaking dont cross. Cars. Cars are a total blindspot for me. What I know about cars can fill a shot glass. With room to spare. For car stuff, I usually just turn the music really loud until I cant hear the strange sound, and keep going until I can coast into my driveway where I turn the keys over to hubby and leave it at that.

I can call AAA faster than I can eat icecream and i can eat icecream really fast. Brain freeze and everything.
But today while i was driving there was a sound I couldn’t ignore and I really wanted to get where I was going. I am still me so I still ran my errand with the music nice and loud, but when I got home I decided to see what I could see, and to see if I had made it worse.

I daintily laid down in my driveway and shimmied under the car to have a look. My ever present pawpatrol crawled under with me. The fur of us blinked up at the cramped and yet vast array of foriegn thingys. I could see a box like thingy (not the muffler because amazingly enough I can recognize that) hanging down on one side and held in place on the other side with an old ziptie.

“I bet I can jerryrig this to hold” I decided and slithered out to grab what I could find after sending pix to the hubs. I found a role of wire, wire cutters, and a single heavy duty ziptie and headed back to the car.

I wiggled and twisted and blinked away a constant sprinkling of rust and other “stuff” and let my arms drop to the pavement to survey my handiwork. I’m honestly ridiculously proud of myself!!! I managed to anchor the thingy in 4 places to the frame using the wire and the one heavy duty zip tie!

One of my sons decided photographic evidence was required for his siblings. He said he was impressed especially with my not so very distant “banging rock” history, that I was actually under a car and actually using legitimate tools. He’s too fast to catch and I’m not spry enough to catch him so he won that round. But I won the day. Boom. Let’s hope this holds for a trip to the beach because I’ll be damned if I don’t deserve it. This woman waits for no one. Well, except AAA.


Ready for a reset

Ready for a reset

Everyone needs a reset day. A refresh. Whatever it takes to take care of the body, mind, and spirit. The summer has been full and fast and lately I’ve felt a bit …crowded inside. As if there wasn’t enough room for everything contained within. A weariness. Sometimes I forget to take time to reset and let go.

I left early this morning with my go bag stocked and found myself following the tiny voice inside (that had lately been screaming) wherever it wanted to go. Like a homing pidgeon I pulled In to a spot at the beach, changed between two car doors (my own in case you’re thinking to yourself, “now I know this woman and there is absolutely no guarantee she didn’t strip with strangers…”) and landed on soft sand by 1pm.

I dropped everything and walked straight into the ocean until the waves covered me and stayed like that for a while before climbing into a low chair near the dunes, leaning all the way back, closing my eyes, surrounded by deafening sea and a beautiful breeze.

Even very dark and cold clouds bearing thick rain drops and rumbles of thunder couldn’t pull me away. I let the storm pass right over me, face up to the sky (fingers crossed because I did spot a bolt or two) until the beach was pretty much abandoned.

Now I’m sitting in my car (having stripped and changed again between my car doors) looking out at the little bits of late day sun trying to break through the clouds and sprinkles and I know its time to head home. I feel lighter inside. My skin smells nice like salt and rain and coconut. I’m ready to go.


Making every moment count

Making every moment count

So many amazing sights and experiences, packed into so many moments big and small. After a whirlwind first day in NYC we let ourselves sleep in and set off on day two for Battery Park, Ellis Island, and the Statue of Liberty.

I don’t care how dopey I sound, I was moved and so filled with the hugeness of it all. People coming from every corner or the world, piling onto boats, bouncing across roiling water, grey heavy skies, lightning arcing across hot muggy air. How did they survive their journeys? Pulling around and seeing that beautiful statue was a moment I won’t forget.

Ellis Island was so striking to me. We wandered around soaking everything in, tucked into a desk and scrolled through the database to find my family and touch their names, the dates they arrived on this very Island, and have it sink in that THIS, this place was where they first stayed while they waited to be welcomed in.

We left the ferry to soft rain, deciding we could walk a bit to say money on a ride. They skies opened wide and we found ourselves soaked to the bone, waking through crazy sideways rain for an hour before deciding some things were costlier than others and ordered a cab. Thank God too! It was another almost hour to the tiny apartment on the upper west side of Manhattan where we have been renting a room!

Thankfully we both packed a lot of extra underwear and shoes so dried, and fortified with food we headed to the theatre district that same evening at the invitation of a dear friend who was able to reserve standing room tickets for Lucy and me to see my first ever broadway show…”Hamilton”!

It was incredible. I don’t recall more than a few moments passing between the curtain rising and the curtain falling. I haven’t stoped grinning and dancing and delighting for more than a breath. After the show (which was UNBELIEVABLE!!!!!!!!) Lisa has us leave the theatre, go around the side the stage door to meet up with our friend Rob, where a very serious man stood with a clipboard that had our names on it. He let us inside backstage where Lisa gave us the full tour, and introduced us to some of the cast.

We stayed out late talking treason, and laughing over wine and beer, and found our way back to our beds around 2am.

Today we slept IN. Really really IN. We took the subway into Madison Square Park where we lunched, shopped for the birthday girl, bought fresh fruit from a street vendor, and a bottle of cheap red wine from a small shop and headed back to the apartment on the metro to rest.

We refused to slack and miss anything so we rallied in fine style for the evening to see Rob and friends in an improv comedy show. More beer, more wine, more talk of treason and more laughter.

Tomorrow is our last day. We booked our bus tickets for afternoon so we’ll still have time to take one last bus tour and see the Met before heading home.

It’s been an amazing, empowering and incredible experience. Already making plans for the next adventure. Blessed.





Girl power

Girl power

I’ve never done anything like this It’s really wide of my comfort zone so I’m kind of crazy proud of myself tonight. NYC…can’t believe I made it past crushing anxiety and panic.

Caleb was so sweet to me. He hugged me and said “it was really smart of future “you” to have Lucy getting off a bus in NYC, because if she wasn’t, if she was just flying home? Present “you” would have totally bailed by now on this trip.” And he’s right. I’d have canceled by Sunday.

It’s so agonizing to have that panic start to slowly build. It’s insidious, and paralyzing but I DID IT. I actually got on a bus and got myself here for the first time ever. I found my way to where Lucy was (we arrived in different locations at different times!) ate slices of pizza served by the most delightfully colorful woman, and found our way to the tiny apartment we are renting a room in.

Had a delightful late lunch of thick cheesecake slices and iced tea with one of the most kickass women I am proud to call a friend where we talked treason and hatched plans before walking her back to the theater she works at.

We walked through Times Square, the Theatre district, SoHo, a dizzying array of candy shops and makeup stores, before entering Central Park where we walked for hours , past the zoo, the Shakespeare gardens, and so many beautiful sights! Came out of the park right in front of the museum of natural history and flopped on a bench to wait for a cab.

Cold showers, long drinks of water, laying side by side on a shared bed, cooled by fans beside my favorite girl in the entire world. And it’s just day one of our awesome adventure.





When everything goes sideways

When everything goes sideways

I feel like my home is really a big boat with a hole we can never find, taking on more water than we can bail with our buckets. We stand hip deep in it, bailing and laughing with just a tinge of hysteria to our voices. Thankfully we both swim ok, and always liked the water.

I had already added extra shifts to prep for fall tuition installments for two of our five, when my oven breathed its last breath two weeks ago. Nothing to be alarmed over, no foul play or anything like that. The poor thing just died of extreme old age. And extreme over use. I site the aforementioned five offspring fed lovingly and copiously over the years.

As fate would have it my grandmother’s hand me down refrigerator died last night. Mostly thawed meat and vegetables weepingly announced its passing this morning. I personally think it died of a broken heart. The oven and fridge lived together in my kitchen for ages and could often be seen winking (doors not fully closed, thank you very much aforementioned offspring) at each other from across the tiny island.

Don’t even ask about my washer and dryer. One has consumption (it consumes socks one at a time), and the other says it’s tummy hurts and can it please stay home today. The answer to that question is “NO”. No one takes a day off of laundry in a family this large so suck it up buttercup and wash the damn load.

So now I’m a slave to graveyard shifts and cruising online sites on breaks for used appliances. Unfortunately there is no category on the site for “used tuition”. I know. I looked. Used every related search engine phrase I could think of from “free bags of cash” to “broke-ass mom”. Not one single hit. Still, I soldier on.