Monday, November 29, 2010

Get The Hugs While You Can

Something you don't think you'd really have to be reminded about right?

You'd be surprised.

I know you love your kids. I'm not saying that you don't.

But when you're busy busy busy... how often do you stop just to hug them. To sit with them for a minute. Smile at them. TELL them that you love them, and always will.

We all think we'll have forever to do these things, but, none of us are guaranteed tomorrow.

AND... even if we have YEARS of tomorrows... it's no secret that all too soon they won't WANT to hug you anymore. They won't want to sit with you or hold your hand. And telling them "I love you baby" will result in "MOOooom.... not in front of my friends".

They won't always be young and innocent. You won't always be their superhero.

Kind of bleak and depressing, but just trying to make a point.

I know I've done a similar post before... but I just think it needs to be stressed. In BOLD, italics, and underlined even.

Take time out of your day for a game of pretend. What's "One more story, please?" when that story is only 5 minutes long. They can never hear "I love you" enough. And, on the opposite end of the spectrum, what parent can ever hear too much of "I love you mommy" or "I love you daddy". Take a minute just to sit down and give them a big huge hug. Just because you feel like it. There doesn't need to be any other reason.

There's no guarantee that you'll be able to tomorrow... and, if you are, they may not want you to.

In Dreams Begin

So a while back I was sent a book called In Dreams Begin by Skyler White for review. I had read her first novel and falling, fly and was very excited to read her second.

Skyler writes books that make you think. Not that do the thinking for you. And I totally dig that. Makes you wonder if the things she's writing about are actually possible in the real world. So I was totally excited to receive her second book in the mail.

In Dreams Begin is a book unlike any other I've ever read. Modern girl, just married, being transported over a century BACKWARDS when she falls asleep. And the kicker is... when she arrives in the past, she takes over the body of an Irish freedom fighter named Maude Gonne, and falls in love with poet W.B. Yeats. And he with her.

Great story. There were a few parts where I had to go back and read a few paragraphs again to figure out what exactly I was reading. Who was who and where were they. It kind of moved around a bit quickly so there were times when it lost me. But her writing is smooth. Melodious. If that makes sense. She doesn't try to be hip and with it. She doesn't use vulgarity and slang in an effort to draw in a particular group of readers. It's as if she's writing solely for the characters int he story. It's poetic. And Elegant.

Description of back of the book from

"“Close your eyes tightly—tightly—and keep them closed . . .”

From a Victorian Ireland of magic, poetry and rebellion, Ida Jameson, an amateur occultist, reaches out for power, but captures Laura Armstrong, a modern-day graphic artist instead. Now, for the man or demon she loves, each woman must span a bridge through Hell and across history . . . or destroy it.

“Every passionate man is linked with another age, historical or imaginary, where alone he finds images that rouse his energy.” W. B. Yeats

Anchored in fact on both sides of history, Laura and Ida, modern rationalist and fin de si├Ęcle occultist, are linked from the moment Ida channels Laura into the body of celebrated beauty and Irish freedom-fighter Maud Gonne. When Laura falls—from an ocean and a hundred years away—passionately, Victorianly in love with the young poet W. B. Yeats, their love affair entwines with Irish history and weaves through Yeats’s poetry until Ida discovers something she wants more than magic in the subterranean spaces in between.

With her Irish past threatening her orderly present and the man she loves in it, Laura and Yeats—the practical materialist and the poet magus—must find a way to make love last over time, in changing bodies, through modern damnation, and into the mythic past to link their pilgrim souls . . . or lose them forever

I strongly recommend this book to anyone looking for a refreshing new read.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

There's Bubble Gum in the Baby's Hair

When I was a single mom of 1... I'd hear things like this. "You never go anywhere." "Just find someone to watch the baby." "Put it in daycare" (yes, someone really said IT). "It can't really be that hard." "How can you be tired? All you do is stay home all day."
I've been on both sides of the spectrum. For the better part, I have been a working mom. With the exception of the last 2 years, it's been part time work. But I did stay home with my kids for 6 months (I know, I know... not that long to be a SAHM (of 2 anyway.... I stayed at home with just Alanna for a while after she was born), but it was winter.... in MAINE... and gas was almost 4 dollars a gallon, my husband worked an hour away and I had to drop him off/pick him up so I only had enough gas left over to take Alanna to and from school during the week).
Being a SAHM is NOT an easy job. At all. And if you think it is, please feel free to click the X in the corner. It's exhausting and taxing and tiring and sometimes it's irritating. Depending on the day. Hehe. Unlike other jobs, however, you can't quit. You don't get fired (unless you're a REALLY bad parent). You don't get paid time off. It doesn't provide insurance. There's no training guide that can actually prepare you for everything that is parenting. You don't get mandated breaks throughout the day or a guaranteed hour long lunch break. You don't get paid over time if you're up late into the night with a baby who doesn't want to go to bed.
On the flip side... how many other jobs pay you in hugs and kisses and "I love you"s. How many jobs crawl in to bed with you because they're scared of thunderstorms or just want to be near you at night (ok, so this could have been worded differently at the beginning of the sentence, but whatever... I don't feel like re-writing it, hehe). How many jobs draw you pictures where your head is the size of a grape and the rest of your body is the size of a watermelon, but they did it just for you, and they're so proud of it. How many jobs look at you at 6 in the morning when you're wearing a ratty tshirt and sweatpants full of holes as your pjs, hair sticking out every direction, big black circles under your eyes and say to you "I think you're pretty" and mean it.
Ok so I kind of got off track for a bit.
But really... staying at home with children, or heck, even one child, is not easy. It gets easiER. It's like with anything you do though. The more you do it, the better you get at it. But there are still days when you feel like you'll scream if you don't get a break. Or you have people talking to you from all different directions and it seems like your head is going to start spinning in circles. A lot of people run on little to no sleep for a long time after their babies are born. And yet, they still manage to get out of bed when they need to, get dressed, and get things done. They don't have the luxury of "I'm tired, I think I'll sleep in an extra hour tomorrow morning." It's "Holy crap I'm so tired I think I'm going insane." Me? I've fallen asleep in the tub before. And, I'll be honest, I've even fallen asleep on the toilet. That's how tiring it can be. But I tell you what, most moms, even from a stone cold dead sleep will bolt upright and wide awake if they hear something coming from their babies in the middle of the night. No matter how tired they are.
Again, I digress.
So if you have friends who have children, and they don't drop everything the second that you want to go out to the bar, or have a girls night out, or whatever it is you normal people do (I'm a recluse, what can I say) please get over it. And I mean that in the nicest way possible. It's not you (unless of course, it is... and then I really have nothing else to say). Don't take it personal. Mom is probably tired and delirious and when you called her she probably started talking into her tennis shoe before she realized that it wasn't actually the phone.
Now, don't get me wrong, I know this isn't true of all moms. Believe me. I'm wicked jealous of all you moms who have so much energy and are always up and around and excited about doing things. You homeschool and make crafts and build things and run errands and have playdates with other moms and make dinner etc. I would pass out after the first couple minutes of a list like that. Ok, so not really... but I'm just not the go-go-go type of mom.
But really, no... it's not always easy to find a babysitter. As most other people have lives that they are not inclined to drop whenever the fancy suits you. No, I personally don't go anywhere because I'm lucky that I function during the day. And put IT in daycare? Did I give birth to a child-eating clown? Didn't think so. IT is actually a baby, and baby has a name. And just for that stupidity you can leave me alone.
It's common sense.
It is hard to understand and comprehend the situation when you're not in it, I know. But still people... use your noggin. There's a sun, and planets, and stars, and galaxies in that great big sky of ours and none of them revolve around you. So if you have a friend who has kids and they tell you NO to a mani/pedi or lunch or a movie or whatever... it's "not you, it's me" basically.

Friday, November 5, 2010

Secret Garden

I watched The Secret Garden (or most of it) with Lydia the other day. Truth be told, at 27 I'm still more impressed with that movie than she was. I saw it for the first time when I was 10 years old. It sucked me right in when I heard the music from Edward Scissorhands playing in the trailer. But when I saw the movie I thought it was completely magical. It quickly became my favorite movie.

No seriously. I memorized every single word from that movie that Mary said and I can still repeat most of them today. Is that bad?


So I wanted Lydia to watch it. I think maybe I should have waited and steered the viewing to Alanna instead. She's a little bit more on the understanding level for that movie. Honestly though? I wanted to watch it too. So we did.

Since seeing that movie, another dream of mine (I know I have way too many that will never come to fruition) to create a garden space (on a somewhat smaller scale) like the one in the movie. With the high hedged walls and the ivy all over. Roses and tree swings. A small coyfish pond (ok so that's not really in the movie, and it doesn't really have to be coyfish). Pretty bird feeder. Tulips. Foxgloves. Lillies (oh my!).

Watching this movie as an adult has no different effect on me now than it did when I was 10 years old. I still love it. I know the books a classic but this version of the movie is a classic in my eyes. And there have to be at least 3 or 4 versions. It's one of the sweetest movies I've ever seen.