Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Dear Human

Yes, it is all about me.

I will gaze lovingly up at you first thing in the morning and whine until you look at me. When the sunlight of your gaze touches me, I will erupt with joy, a small black blur in your house. This will make you smile, and it's a good thing, because here are the other things I will do, some of which you react to in a less than desirable manner:

When you are "sewing", I will whine because the machine is on the kitchen table, and must therefore be something to eat.

When you lay the fabric out on the floor to cut it, I will know this is a new bed for me and I will immediately lie down on it. If I am in another room, I will sense the presence of fabric on the floor and come running.

If you put pins in your mouth, I will whine at you, because HELLO! they're in your MOUTH! They must be edible!

If what you are sewing has tabs or loops that come within my reach, I will tug and chew on them even as you are attempting to sew whatever it is they are attached to. (this one especially seems to annoy you)

If anything hits the floor, I will attempt to eat it. You've been dropping some nasty pokey things. Cut it out.

I will paw endearingly at your bare foot on the presser foot at 1 in the morning, and I will not find it endearing when you put me in my crate FOR NO GOOD REASON after that.

I trust you're taking notes. I'd hate to have to bring this up again.


The Dog YOU Begged For

Friday, December 15, 2006

Just to get this off my chest

I was having a conversation with a woman I barely know a few days ago, who has two adopted children, and birth families came up. I was pleased to hear that her children, who are almost teenagers, have relationships with their birthmothers. I started to say something and she said "Well obviously it's not a problem - I hold all the power."

I was too flabberghasted to speak. Here's what I would have said, had I been able to sort words out of the maelstrom in my head.

It's not about who has the power. No parent has power. It's about figuring out that we have no power, ever, anyone, and no matter how our children come to us, they can be taken away in an instant, or choose to walk away, and what we really need to do is be who we are meant to be in their lives, as long as we are able. And we need to step back and let the children who have come to us through adoption work out their own answers about the complicated emotional tangle that adoption can be, open or otherwise.

And pray for them. "Who do you love best?" is a question I as a mother would never ask, (and please God may it never even flip through my mind), but it is a question my children feel like they should have an answer to, and the last thing on earth they need is any sort of proprietary "you belong to me" baggage from either of the perceived contenders.

Don't love anybody best, baby. You don't owe me anything. Figure out how you feel and give yourself permission to feel it, and don't try to nail it down to words or put it in slots. And I will thank God, on a daily basis, that I get to be part of your journey.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

So I did this online quiz thing ...

...called "What American Accent Do You Have?", prepared to be all insulted because I'M NOT AMERICAN and the result cracked me up so I'm sharing it with you.

What American accent do you have?
Your Result: North Central

"North Central" is what professional linguists call the Minnesota accent. If you saw "Fargo" you probably didn't think the characters sounded very out of the ordinary. Outsiders probably mistake you for a Canadian a lot.

The West
The Midland
The Inland North
The South
The Northeast
What American accent do you have?
Quiz Created on GoToQuiz

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

you get what you pay for

Many years ago, when TechnoBoy and I were planning our Big Trip (we took a year off to travel), TechnoBoy informed me that we needed a North Face tent. Whatever, I thought, a tent is a tent is a tent. And then I found out how much they cost, and I wanted to know why we didn't want a two-man tent from Zellers. How good can a tent be? I wanted to know. (I remember reading the literature that came with the tent and picking up on the phrase "ripstop nylon", and using that phrase for everything. Nice shoes, a friend might say. Thanks, I'd say. Only the best for my feet - they're made of ripstop nylon!)

About a third of the way through our trip, we were in a terrible storm in either Spain or Italy or Portugal (we like to drive!) and got a huge rip in the tent fly. Huge. Unfixable. Three cheers for ripstop nylon. But then! This tent has a lifetime guarantee, TechnoBoy pointed out. He did complicated things with phones and phone cards and called North Face in the United States and explained our problem, and that we would be travelling for the next eight months and needed a tent fly. And ...North Face FED-EX'd a replacement tent fly to a friend of ours in England (we were only a week away from England in our itinerary then, as I recall) and it was waiting for us when we got there.

That was fifteen years ago, and that fly still doesn't have a rip in it.

I was in Sears the other day looking for a new mixer, having just recently had an unfortunate incident involving smoke where there shouldn't be smoke, and the hurling of small appliances out into the snow. I passed by mixers on stands shaking my head at the price tag (only $288! on sale!) and rather begrudgingly forked out $30 for a hand held one that came with a whisk attachment that I didn't want and wouldn't know how to use if I did want it. (Sears was all out of $10 mixers)

The next day a friend came over for a ChristmasBakingExtravangza and brought a KitchenAid mixer.

I think they are quite possibly made of ripstop nylon.*

*Ok this whole post is meant to be a creative way of saying "WOW WHAT A MIXER THAT KITCHENAID THING IS, and how aptly named it is**, and why has no-one told me this before, and WOW darien I get why you like yours so much, and how did I get to be 45 before I discovered this?" but it might not have worked so if you got to the end and thought "what does Christmas baking have to do with a tent?", just read this endnote and ignore the rest. I'm too lazy to think up a new analogy.

**Two and a half hours - seven batches of cookies and squares. SEVEN. You just put the ingredients near the KitchenAid and it senses them with its' Kitchen Super Powers and sucks them in, in the right order. There is humming and buzzing and then possibly a gentle burp and when you look in the bowl, there is your dough. Or whatever else you were looking for. And it cleans so easily and looks so nice and did I mention I NEVER BAKE and why am I suddenly dreaming of gleaming appliances? Why?***

***Two and a half hours and my freezer is full, is why.

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Lest the siblings get too excited

Let me clarify TechnoBoy's state of mind, as he anticipates the Arrival of the Siblings.

Me: I got Coke on sale today!

TB: Let's surprise my siblings with that!

Me: It snowed again last night.

TB: SHHHH! Let's not tell them there's snow here!!!

Me: {long boring blog post about baking and pies and stuff}

TB: Man, you just have to talk about EVERYTHING, don't you?

And I told you all there's an air hockey table. Beyond that, I'm going to have to stick with stories of my past until you all actually get here.

I hope I'm allowed to ask you to bring your skates, if you have any. It's not like we're skating on the hot tub or anything. Wait, did you all know about the hot tub already? Bring your bathing suits!

Monday, December 04, 2006

Why there's no post today

I had this great post all set up and half thought out and really all I needed to do was type it out and publish it and then I remembered that I can't talk about that because TechnoBoy wants to surprise his siblings and I'd be letting the c-a-t out of the b-a-g and all I have left is

My brother is visiting for the evening. The dog distrusts him, and keeps running to me with what I call her "Timmy's down the well" bark to tell me there is a stranger in this house and someone should perhaps do something as long as it's not her because he stares at her as she barks at him and reduces her to a quivering mass of whimper.

and that didn't really seem like enough to devote a whole post to. And now I'm going to bed, and darien, your "something very chocolate" just came out of the oven and will go in the freezer tomorrow, awaiting the Royal Visit.