Wednesday, December 30, 2009


I could say that my life is in total upheaval. Everything is topsy turvy. I feel like I'm at a giant train station. An outdoor platform, smoke in the air. I am waiting for the train that is my life to arrive. But the platform is my life. My life is what is happening now. Happiness depends on my ability to make peace.

Make peace with the platform.

I could say that on Christmas morning, Ayla was underwhelmed by her gifts and I was embarrassed.

I could say that we walked to the lovely beach from my brother-in-law's lovely beach-ish house and that we saw dolphins and the girls splashed in the sand and frolicked in the gentle waves.

I could say that I dropped my camera into the ocean and that even though I plucked it out quick as a glimmer, it was ruined.

I could say that I cried at Disneyland. I could say that I was extremely frustrated with Disneyland. I could say that I loved Disneyland, and all would be true.

All are true.

I cried when Ayla and Indy met the princesses. Isn't that the stupidest thing? Who can account for this? Do you know me? I am not the sort of person that cries over princesses.

Yet. I did.

I could say that Disneyland is the line-iest place on earth. That you have to wait in line to wait in line. And let me say: We all know Disneyland is expensive. What I did not know was that it costs approximately $100 a minute. And that is just to breathe the air.

I could tell you that our families were so generous with us that we didn't have to worry about money when we were there, and that was an enormous relief.

I could tell you they confiscated my one Disney souvenir at the airport because ornament Cinderella was sitting on a small liquid-filled bubble.

I could try to tell you how surreal and completely divided from all things natural Orange County is and I feel like if I lived there, I would go into a kind of cement and mall tainted sleep, and possibly never wake to the bracken and bramble again. But really, why bother to dwell.

I could tell you to take heart. Take heart. The darkness has come, and it has passed. Already, the light is returning.

I keep waiting for my life to start, but this is my life. In all its slouching, lurching, glimmering uncertainty. The dolphins may be offering up brief mythic glances in the distance. It's all right to look. Fear not, the tide is coming in. But don't forget. For now, you are not in the waves. For now, you are standing in the sand. Beautiful things surround here, too.

Find them.


Wednesday, December 9, 2009


I'm always looking for good recipes. Here's one. I could eat this at least once a week. I would, if it wasn't made of cheese and bacon grease. Cheese and bacon grease? You had me at hello.

Paupered Chef's Pasta Carbonara

Image from The Paupered Chef.

Pink and Glitter

Indy-Lou-Who says. . .


Comfort and joy to you*.

**Tori wrote this Christmas tune in celebration of her daughter.
It's supposed to have a big band. To hear the album version,all tony and full of swing and swagger, go here.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Thanks Living

On Thanksgiving, I took a lot of really crappy pictures:



I told Noah I want to save up and drop $800 on a camera but I don't think he heard me because he just went straight to the fridge and downed two Ten-Fidy's right quick.

I was trying to take pictures of the girls making their gingerbread houses.



Unfortunately, Indy got herself almost immediately drunk:


She spent the rest of the night dancing on the table wearing nothing but a pair of my underwear and an oven mitt and shouting "Hey guys, check out my moves! Check out my moves I says! My moves is the best moves in the whole apple town. I's is habbing me awn onwee on da dis tie-em, guys. GUYS! LOOK AT ME!!"

That is, when she wasn't busy calling Max a fascist dictator and Ruby a socialist.

Ayla and Noah started knocking them back as well:

Mercy and Lucy were all like, 'Omg, can you BELIEVE those blackguards? Methinks they shall be cordially uninvited to our upcoming Venetian Breakfast':


Really, I felt they made a right Cheltenham tragedy out of it.

The Tuttles are all just so exceedingly photogenic, though, so you can quickly forgive them for indulging in a little bit of Regency-era snubbery:


Obviously Goodwifes Tatum and Tuttle, for all their teetotaling, were clandestinely imbibing a little something of their own:


Ayla sounded her barbaric yawp:


Then Indy wrestled with daddy until daddy got all Mike Tyson on her:


I blame the sherry.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Things I Learned In November:

Sometimes when you do something that is really hard, people will tell you how lucky you are, and both parts are true.

The Bible says leave and cleave, right? But a cleaver cuts things apart, mainly meat. What can we learn from this? Maybe the Bible meant a man should leave his mother and father, and then go on to cook a whole lot of barbecue for his wife. Can't really argue with that wisdom, can you?

All manner of ill mood, luck, and will can be remedied by a Coopersmith's Sigda's Green Chili beer and Kermit's Pizza.

When your bright and burgeoning five-year-old has to leave her class of new friends and wonderful, wonderful teachers, you will be desperately sad. When Fort Collins, best place to live in American, actually does not have enough room for every child in it to go to preschool, and tells you your child has been placed on a waiting list, you will again be desperately, frustratingly, achingly sad. There is nothing you can do to change this. Try to accept it. Think lots of angry thoughts about Fort Collins for a few days. Then, try to accept Fort Collins as well. You live here now, remember? And you ain't got the energy or desire to change it.

Free employee beer can sometimes work like a balm. The Beer of Gilead comes in cans.

You will miss your old places: the library down the block with the librarian who knew you and always removed your fines, your mail carrier who knew you by name and smiled and waved, your Barnes and Noble with adequate seating(30 seats for 130,000 people. Really, Fort Collins?), the park down the street the other way where your children ran and played for three years, the horsey park that always felt like an adventure.

But you will find new places. A beautiful new library where all the books and dvd's are new and a play area that keeps your kids entertained for hours (ignore the fact that the bulk of the Fiction collection is cheesy Christian Fiction. You can order other books through Prospector loans).

Feed yourself Coopersmith's again. I cannot overemphasize the importance of Coopersmith's.

You are capable of crying very, very hard over having to leave a job. A JOB. Always try to find a job that you would cry to leave, in the future.

Amazon Prime soothes all manner of lost employee bookstore discounts. You could marry Amazon Prime, you know. Employee Discount always did have commitment issues. Also was kind of a whore.

A husband who will bring you hot cocoa and leave you alone in your room for a few hours is worth his weight in books, free shipping, and Green Chili Beer.

(Plus, have you tasted the barbecue?)

Pictures to come soon. Promise.

Over and out.

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