Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Not Dead Yet

Seems that I blinked and it's been over a week since I posted here.  Ugh. All is well, unless you are Thing One's left collarbone, anyway.

My boys were playing pickup soccer with their cousins Thursday afternoon in my in-laws' yard.  My boys are the biggest and oldest of the cousins.  Somehow they managed to get their feet tangled together (an accident from the perspective of all who saw it) and when they fell Thing Two landed on Thing One, breaking his collarbone.  Luckily there was an open Urgent Care with an X-ray machine in the vicinity, so there was a brief detour for scan and sling before we all sat down to turkey.  We were able to get him in to see an orthopedic surgeon Friday and no surgery is required at least, but he will be in a brace for weeks.  He's in no pain but is absolutely bored out of his mind!  No physical activity probably through December...torture for an active 13 year-old boy.  

Not a pic of him but this is the brace type.

Ironic since he had a personal best in the 5K Turkey Trot he ran that morning!!  All three kids did, actually: Thing One ran 7-minute miles, Thing Two 8-minute miles, and Petunia 9-minute miles.  Himself ran with Petunia since she's too little to run a road race alone.  Me?  Hey, I ran my first race in at least ten years, didn't have to stop, didn't hurt my bum knee, and had fun, so I'm calling it a win even if my nine year-old did finish a few minutes before me.  :)

More to come later...a few other adventures over the holiday weekend involving cliffs, trees and climbing gear!

Sunday, November 20, 2016


Thing Two's soccer team had their end-of-year party tonight, immediately following the last tournament game of the fall season. (They came in second in their age group!!)  It was held at a pub that has a large glass-walled interior room full of those loud, colorful, token-operated, ticket-dispensing games beloved by children everywhere, which I suspect had something to do with the choice of venue.

Fueled by pizza, the kids ran into the game room with their cups of tokens and emerged an hour or so later with fistfuls of tickets. Literally thousands of them, all told.  Which, one fistful after another, and unprompted by any adult, they all proceeded to hand to their trainer for his two little kids.  The big kids left the pub empty-handed, but the two tiny ones took home two or three big prizes each.

This trainer has a full time day job and trains them two nights a week on top of that.  I'm sure his wife is tired with the two little ones and would much prefer that he be home more often than he is! But when he showed her the tickets and explained what happened, she told him that she understands why he coaches this group of boys.  And then every adult in the room suddenly developed a case of the sniffles.

Sunday, November 13, 2016

You Know What? I'm Still Mad.

I live in a very white, very conservative area.  I'm not surprised that Trump took more votes here than Clinton, and I'm also not surprised that a number of people I know voted for him.  What I am finding interesting is the defensive tone that many of them are taking about their vote on Facebook.

I get that many of them are voting their wallets and their hatred of all things Clinton.  I get that many of them are what I would generally consider good folks who carefully considered their options and then came down on the other side of the political line from me.  That's their prerogative in this fine country.  

I also think that deep down in some small corner of the psyches of some of these people, they are ashamed of their association with Trump.  Or worse, that they know they *should* be, but they aren't.  Because deep down, they care less about people who aren't able and straight and Christian and white and male (don't even get me started on white women here) than they should, and they know it.  So when they get called out for voting Trump, they get disproportionately offended.  

Here's how I see it: you may not have voted Trump because you agree with all of his loathsome personal beliefs.  You may have supported him because of his economic policy or smaller-government leanings or outsider status or whatever.  But YOU SUPPORTED HIM.  That's the bottom line. You helped put that man in office.  So, now, here's what you need to do.  Assuming that you actually care about people who aren't ablebodied Christian white males, anyway.  

You need to actively, vocally stand up for the immigrants, the people of color, the women, the LGBTQ, the nonChristian, all those whose enemies have just been validated and invigorated by these election results.  Otherwise, no matter why you voted Trump, the generalizations apply to you too.  

Thursday, November 10, 2016

A Touch Of Post-Election Levity

Yesterday was parent conference day at school for our younger two kids.  Believe me when I tell you that I was not in the mood for that AT ALL, but I put on my big-girl pants and went anyway.  (Fortunately, all is well with both kids.)  While I was waiting in the hallway outside Petunia's classroom pre-conference, I started reading the bulletin boards to entertain myself and came across this poem she had written.  I am sharing it with her permission.


If I were president of the United States,
I'd cancel Sesame Street, Elmo and Barney,
Pokémon GO,
Gray, and also
Math on Tuesday morning.

If I were president of the United States,
There'd be pizza for lunch every day,
Three days of weekend, and
A jungle gym at everyone's house.

If I were president of the United States,
You wouldn't have six hours of school.
You wouldn't have parents that yell.
You wouldn't have embarrassing nicknames.
Or cursive.
Or mean people.

If I were president of the United States,
All women and men would have the same rights,
All siblings would be nice,
And a person who sometimes forgot their homework,
And sometimes forgot to study,
Would still be allowed to be
President of the United States.

I like her platform. Petunia for President in 2020!!

Wednesday, November 9, 2016


I am ashamed.

Of my political system.  Of my nation.  In some cases, of my family.

We have elected a bigoted, xenophobic, homophobic, ableist ignoramus.  We should all be ashamed.  And yet I see celebrating on Facebook.

The 1950s called.  It wants us back.  And we listened.

I'd say God help us all, but God had nothing to do with this.

Sunday, November 6, 2016

Real Talk, Hitting Home

Somehow got on the subject of the presidential election with my sons on the way home from church this morning.  (Petunia and Himself were at soccer.)  I explained to them that they are unbelievably lucky to have been born white, male, and Christian in this country because it starts them out at the top of the pile as far as some people are concerned.

This led to a discussion of who those "some people" consider less worthy of respect and dignity than the aforementioned white, Christian males.  Which group, as Thing One noted with no prompting from me whatsoever, would include his Jewish best friend, the Colombian and African-American boys in his posse of buddies (which is surprisingly diverse for such a white-bread school), and his classified brother (whom the evil orange one would doubtless call a "retard.")  Oh, and his little sister, too, since she's a beautiful girl.

I'm glad he sees it.  Maybe there's hope after all.

Friday, November 4, 2016

What's Your Superpower?

This article from the Reflections of a Grady Doctor blog on my sidebar today reminded me of a conversation I recently had with a friend.  We were joking about the craziness of the standard 'mom schedule' and what superpowers would make it all easier (how much would I love having the ability to teleport my children to all the places they need to be??)  This woman happens to have four very active children of her own ranging in age from four to thirteen, plus a thriving home-based business, a husband who travels a great deal, and the responsibility for running our collective kids' school's Girls On The Run afterschool program, in which Petunia is currently participating.  To say that she is busy is a massive understatement.  She would make the average four-star general look unprepared, undisciplined and disorganized!  Her superpower is time management, no doubt about it.

I'm not bad at that either, and I have some other strengths as well, but after thinking about it for a while, I've come to the conclusion that my real superpower is persistence: I am one stubborn, bullheaded SOB.  (Wonder where Thing Two got that from??  Ha.)  I had to have been one of the most uncoordinated white belts in the history of taekwondo, but I kept showing up for class anyway.  Five years later, what do you know?  I'm a lot better at it now.  My next test will be for my black belt.    When Thing Two got his diagnosis, I went home and had an ugly cry.  Then I wiped my eyes and started calling doctors and therapists.  I dragged that boy all over hell getting him help, but he's a different kid now, happy, social and actually capable of having a conversation and functioning normally in school.  Giving up on him was just never an option even on the really dark days.  I bet my geocaching friends would agree too...they send me the tough puzzles to work on because they know I won't be able to let them go until they are solved.

So, what do you think is your greatest strength??  I'm curious to see what responses I get.

Time In A Bottle

Okay, time can slow down now, please. When I was a kid, I remember my mother saying that the days were long but the years were short.  I d...