Sunday, August 30, 2009

Escaping the mushroom cloud

(photo taken by Meeps)

Froggy and I will be escaping this inferno for Iowa tomorrow. FD's hometown of Tujunga is ablaze. His parents are ready to evacuate, if they need to. So far, only a few homes and cabins have burned. But the fires have destroyed over 20,000 acres. The air quality is fine by the beach, but inland, people are really suffering. It's a good time for a CFer to get out of town. Iowa here we come!

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

What's goin' on

August 30-September 6th, Froggy and I will be in Iowa!

We were going to wait til October or later, but it's been a tough summer and this Mama could use some family lovin'. I know it's a busy time with back-to-school stuff, but if you're around and want to see us, my parents still have the same number they did when I was in Kindergarten. So give me a call.

In other news...

We are STILL waiting for FD to get his Respiratory Therapy License. He passed the boards, and graduated. But it took a month and a half for the school to send the transcripts to the state, and now the paperwork is in Sacramento getting "processed." Now they tell us it will take another two weeks before we actually have the certificate in hand. It's been a rather anti-climactic summer. We celebrated FD's graduation, and then waited and waited and waited. Please send good thoughts/prayers that the hospital FD wants to work for, is still as enthusiastic about hiring him as they were three months ago when he did his rotations there.

So we wait some more. It's like purgatory, but with credit card debt. We are so looking forward to a second income, and full-time at that!

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Every once in a while, I like to post our photo montage of Froggy for those who haven't seen it.

Just click HERE.

Monday, August 10, 2009


Our neighbors just had a baby. I can hear him downstairs crying like a cat mews - that frantic, breathless song. It brings me back to almost four years ago when Froggy chirped and mewed, cooed and gurgled, clucked and purred. Oh how I miss those baby sounds.

Froggy was a good baby, only crying for the usual infant complaints - wet, hungry, need mama. I could calm her in an instant, a nurse, a pat, just knowing I was there. Like a magic wand, poof- all was right in her world. The crying would stop and never lasted long.

She's always been her mama's girl. We have been each other's world for four years in a way that no one else has. Without pre-school or big playdates, she's been my cooking partner, my cleaning pal, my grocery shoppin' buddy, the Lavern to my Shirley.

A couple days ago my good friend Meeps had a small gathering at her home. While the adults dined and drank, seven kiddos yielded swords in pirate fights, held one another captive, jumped on the bed, played in the dirt, roasted marshmallows in a fiery pit, played dolls and trucks, swung and giggled, and screamed in the delightful ecstasy of childhood.

This was the first time Froggy truly left my side, never checking in or glancing to see if Mommy was there. At one point when the bigger kids were in the front yard, I ran into the house to make sure she hadn't wandered into the street. She was in the hallway watching someone do something absolutely hysterical. It was obvious when I peered around the corner that I had suddenly become an intruder. This baby who nursed all day, who walked through the house attached to my leg, who slept on me, rode my back when scrubbing the floors, this child who wouldn't dream of letting me shower or use the bathroom alone said upon spying me, "Go away Mommy. We're having fun." And boy did she mean it with a curled brow and hands on her hip. I looked at the other kids like, "Really, I should go?" And they gave me the pathetic gaze that children give all superfluous parents. It's the "don't let the door hit you in the ass" look.

As I left the hall, a tiny thrill rose up in me. She was a big kid. She had successfully made the leap from baby to child. I'd done my job, giving her the confidence to join the kiddo pack, to have a good time without me. I was so happy that she wasn't the outcast, the wallflower, the baby, the ignored. This child who had never been in a mommy-and-me class, or preschool, had graduated from one-on-one, to "the clan". Wow.

As I joined the adults, my joy began to fizzle and I reached for another glass of wine. My baby, my baby, my baby who came out of me, my baby who I could magically calm with one hand on her belly told me flatly to "get out." It was a strange and sober giddiness. I giggled and had tears well up at the same time. And I realized that being a mother is having the sensation of being invited and rejected simultaneously. It's the person you love more than any other saying "I need get lost."

What a bizarre and rapid progression we experience as mothers. First they are in our bodies, living only because we are alive, breathing only because we breathe. And they leave us physically but still cling, still need to be close, still eat and exist because we exist. Their coos become syllables, their cries become harder to calm. The parameter stretches, the magic wand loses power, the wizard behind the apron is suddenly just a crazy and needy broad interrupting a child's joke in a hallway.

I got what I wanted, to sit at a party with the adults and have a real conversation. To have an evening where I wasn't chasing a toddler around making sure all poisons and small objects were out of reach. I'd gotten what I craved for four years, to just chill and have a good time with friends. And yet, like it usually is in life, when you get what you always wanted you miss what it was like before you had it.

Froggy laughed and squealed, she guffawed and teased, cackled and screeched. She settled with grace and joy into the role of big kid. And her mother, sipping Macedonian wine, trying to follow the flow of adult conversation, could only concentrate on the sounds of my girl, my big girl who like the tide and the moon will always dance that desperate dance of reaching out and falling back, pulling close and pushing away. It's only natural.

As I write these last words I hear my newest neighbor reaching out to his mother with a needy cry and I know that while my evening is ending, hers is just beginning. I'm sure if she could trade places with me right now she would, if only to have a good nights rest. But I know the truth. One day she'll look back on this night of sleeplessness and sore nipples and realize that it was, like all things sacred and fleeting - something to be missed.

Monday, August 03, 2009

Museum Square

Since we haven't the funds to go on a vacation, we're taking advantage of the great museums and 'free events' in Los Angeles this summer. Friday, we spent the day at the Page Museum, at the La Brea tar pits, had lunch in the Farmer's Market, and listened to jazz in the park at LACMA. Poifect day. Just poifect.