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Archive for the ‘family’ Category

Forgive me readers, for I have sinned.  It has been over a month since my last post.  I don’t know a whole lot about the blogging world and its rules and regulations, but I do know if I want to build a sturdy base of followers posting once a month is not the way to do it.  I make no excuses.  Instead I will take the easy way out and give you the bulleted list of what I have been doing and what my next big plans are.

  • I just recently discovered the world of Flavia de Luce.  I am on the second book right now and have the other two loaded up on my brand spanking new Kindle Fire.  I am loving these books- they are the perfect Christmas vacation read.  She is a little spitfire. I highly recommend them to anyone, especially those that loved Ramona Quimby and Harriet the Spy.
  • I just recently got a new camera.  I have signed up for some classes so that I can actually learn how to use this thing.  I have always been fascinated with photography and hope to develop this hobby into something.  Here is the first picture I took.  I am kind of proud of it and can’t wait for the day that I look back at this picture and laugh at my inability to take a good picture.
  • I’ve started experimenting in jewelry making.  I have made some earrings and rings and necklace pendants.  Again, this is a  hobby I hope to develop.  I love making jewelry with a certain person and style in mind.
  • Dating.  I have gone on A LOT of first dates since I moved to this area.  Most of these have not led to second dates.  Although right now I have started seeing someone who I think has a lot of potential.  Two dates so far.  That’s all I am saying.  Don’t want to jinx anything, but I like him.  That’s all.
  • The holidays.  This year it is just me and my dad.  The rest of my family is in California.  I am spending Christmas Eve with some friends, so that will be fun, but Christmas will be strange.  Small, quiet, and a little awkward.  I plan on making some eggplant parm. and have The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo on dvd to watch with my old man (I gave him the books last year and he loved them) in case things get too strained and we run out of things to say.  The cribbage board is also waiting.
  • Dieting.  I am back on a diet.  It has been going well, but man, it is hard to diet around the holidays.  So far, I have been pretty strong.  I am allowing myself a hiatus on the 24th and 25th, but that is all.  I have been doing Zumba here and there as well.  I love it.  So much fun.  I think a lot has to do with my secret love of poppy dance music.

And that pretty much sums things up for now.  See you again next month.  Kidding.  I think.

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Get Rich Quick

Yesterday my sister called me claiming that she had the perfect, fool-proof plan for how we could “get rich quick”.  Now, while this may sound very enticing, I was weary.  The last time my sister came up with a get rich quick plan it was to start breeding and training dogs.  So yeah, I was weary.

Her plan?

I should go on “Are You Smarter than a Sixth Grader?” because in her words, “You(meaning me) are the only person I know who could win.”

I think that says something about the company my sister keeps.

Also, I wonder why she didn’t suggest I go on The X Factor and win 5 million dollars singing my heart out.

Random, yes.  This is why I love my sister.

 

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Keep The Old

About five weeks ago I moved to a new town, a town where I knew nobody.  Heck, I didn’t even know where the grocery store was.  About a week after I moved, one of my old friends from high school got in touch with me (oh the magic of Facebook) and let me know she and her husband and three children lived in the town I had just moved to.  I can’t even begin to explain how happy this makes me.  The two of us used to raise some serious hell.  And man, the laughs we used to share.  Side-splitting, tears rolling down your face, praying you don’t pee your pants kind of laughing.

It is funny- I don’t think I’ve seen her in over ten years, but last night when we talked on the phone it was like no time had passed.  We live very different lives now.  She is a stay at home mom, with three boys all under the age of 6.  She has football practices, play groups and sippy cups to deal with every day.  I am a single working girl whose biggest responsibility is making sure I take the dogs for a walk.  But it is all good.  She is one of those people who played such an instrumental part in the shaping of who I am.  We speak the same language- if you know what I mean.  I am so happy to have her back in my life and am looking forward to our night out.

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We Are Family

My sister and niece came home to Maine for a much too short visit.  I can’t even explain how incredibly awesome my niece is, she is turning into this hilarious, smart and kind human being who I just adore.  And good lord, look how beautiful she is!

I also got to spend some time with my sister.  I didn’t realize how much I missed her until I saw her.  My sister is five years older than me and has always looked out for me and protected me.  Often times I resented her big sister-ness, mistaking it for bossiness.  I realize now how much she has always been there for me and how she has always taken care of me, whether it be calling my so-called friends in middle school and telling them to back the fuck off when they were spreading untrue rumors about me or now offering to cosign on a loan for me to get a new car (I declined the offer, but was eternally grateful for her willingness to do so).  We drove to the beach together and talked a lot about our lives and why we were both still single.  Our conclusion?  We are just way too awesome for any man to handle!

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This and That

I have been on “vacation” for a week now.  I put that in quotes because this summer is going to consist of me packing, finding a place to live and renting my place out.  Not to mention figuring out a new job that I have never done before.   I am not complaining, I swear.  Really, I am actually very excited about all of this.

First, let’s talk about the house search.

I spent ten hours today (most of them in the car) driving all over southern Maine and New Hampshire looking for a place.  It is not that easy finding a place that will take three dogs.  I looked at one very cute, but also extremely small, apartment.  The drawback is that there is NO YARD for the pups.  My dogs are very used to rural living and have developed the habit of needing bushes or woods to go to the bathroom.  They will not go when on a leash.  Living in a downtown area is not really a possibility for me.  So the cute, but small apartment was not really an option.  I then looked at a place in New Hampshire with a nice yard, but the apartment?  Ugh.  The most disgusting carpet I ever saw and a bathroom I couldn’t even turn around in.  The floors all slanted down and the closets?  Teeny, tiny.  Not good for this girl with too many clothes.  I then checked out a few more places to no avail.  The last place I looked at?  I think it might be home.  Rural setting, beautiful area.  Acres and acres of woods surrounding the place.  Less than a five minute drive to an adorable little downtown area with a great bar/cafe that I had lunch at.  The house? A duplex (an elderly lady lives in the other half).  Two bedrooms, lots of closet space.  Nice tiled floor downstairs.  A walk-out basement for the dogs.  Washer/dryer hook-up.  Dishwasher. Nice, clean carpets upstairs.   I’m in love.

Home sweet home?  I hope so.

On a totally different note.  This is my birthday week.  That’s right, I am one of those people who believe in a birthday week.  Last night I went out to dinner with my father.  We had a fabulous dinner and even better conversation.  My old man got a little sentimental on me.  He kept gushing about how proud he was of me and then the most earth shattering moment?  When he said to me, “I know I fucked up as a father and I regret so many things I did or didn’t do.  But somehow, kiddo, you turned out amazing.”    That was probably the best birthday present I could ask for.

And then this morning I wake up and check my reader and find out I won a pouch from Long Story Longer!  Can this birthday week get any better?

Why yes, it can.  Because then this evening my mother called me and said we were going to a performance of Shakespeare’s Complete Works on Saturday.

A home, love from my father, a fabulous pouch and Shakespeare!  I love birthdays!

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A Visitor

A Visitor by Mary Oliver

My father, for example,
who was young once
and blue-eyed,
returns
on the darkest of nights
to the porch and knocks
wildly at the door,
and if I answer
I must be prepared
for his waxy face,
for his lower lip
swollen with bitterness.
And so, for a long time,
I did not answer,
but slept fitfully
between his hours of rapping.
But finally there came the night
when I rose out of my sheets
and stumbled down the hall.
The door fell open

and I knew I was saved
and could bear him,
pathetic and hollow,
with even the least of his dreams
frozen inside him,
and the meanness gone.
And I greeted him and asked him
into the house,
and lit the lamp,
and looked into his blank eyes
in which at last
I saw what a child must love,
I saw what love might have done
had we loved in time.

I found this poem last week and it really spoke to me, so I thought I would share it here.   When I was little, I was daddy’s little girl.  One of my fondest memories of my dad is staying home from school with an ear infection and sitting on the floor at the coffee table eating peanut butter and fluff sandwiches and chicken soup and watching Sesame Street with Dad.  He was the one who stayed home with us, who picked us up from dance class, Girl Scouts, and gymnastics.  He taught me to hit a softball, ride a bike and whistle.

But then I turned into a teenager with boobs and a serious attitude and my father turned into a stranger.  From seventh grade until I left home to go to college, the only words my father and I ever exchanged were regarding my grades or why I should be allowed a later curfew.  I took dance classes and was a cheerleader.  Activities my father did not enjoy and therefore, never came to see me participate in.  He wanted me to play softball, basketball- sports he understood.   He didn’t know the names of any of my friends, he didn’t know what boy I liked, he didn’t I ask, I didn’t offer.  My father, who happens to be a psychologist, has never been able to communicate with any of the women (me, my sister and my mother) in his life.  If and when any of us tried to talk to him, he would turn the television up and ignore us.  So, we gave up trying to talk to him.

When I was a sophomore in college, my parents separated and pretty much all contact with my father ended.  We see each other on holidays and birthdays now.  He doesn’t call, I don’t call.  When we see each other, we engage in small talk.  Conversation becomes strained after about thirty minutes and then we both secretly start planning our exits.

The funny thing is, I think I actually have a lot in common with my father.  We both are avid readers.  We both have a sarcasm that is often misunderstood (another cause of strain in our relationship).  We both enjoy a good microbrewed beer, a nice glass of wine.  We both prefer to ignore our problems and issues and instead strike out with a lashing comment when least expected.

Today, Valentine’s Day, I received a handmade card from my father.  On the front he drew a heart, surrounded by flowers.  Inside he wrote “Happy Valentine’s Day to a wonderful daughter.”  I can’t even begin to tell you how much this touched me.  The image of my father with crayons, coloring this card for me means more than him attending any dance recital or cheering competition.  Looking at that card, “I saw what love might have done.”

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