Saturday, May 16, 2009

This is a note attached to a Mother's Day gift from Oliver. The irony here is that the paper pad is printed with the phrase "Kids Love Mom". Yet when allowed to speak for himself...

"You are kind to me, Mom. I love you (at least sometimes)."

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Im 99.999% Sure He's Hetero

And let me just say for the sake of clarity that if he wasn't, it would be OK with me. I'm just sayin' that based on mounting evidence, Oliver Briggs is the girl-likin' type o' guy. (If you're easily shocked, want to believe that boys don't notice girls until at least twelve, or are Brahm or Oliver's grandparent, don't read this.)

Take last week for instance. Brooks and I are sitting at the kitchen table when Oliver walks out of the bathroom with his head buried in one of my "Self" magazines. It's a health and fitness periodical so my curiosity is piqued as to why a five-year-old would even bother to notice it. Brooks, being male himself, is more clued in than I.

"Hey, Oliver, what are you reading in there?"

Barely looking up he answers, "Poems. This magazine has poems."

(The last time I checked, there were no poems but, hey, I could have missed one.)

Brooks leans over and says quietly into my ear, "That is the equivalent of saying, 'I only subscribe to Playboy for the articles.'"

The light goes on. The pages are filled with beautiful women with beautiful bodies barely covered with their fancy-pants exercise outfits.

I whisper back with a knowing nod.

Using one of the parenting tools from my vast collection, I distract him with a savory morsel of food while gently removing the magazine from his hands saying something vague like, "Here - have a bite to eat while I put this away for you." No shame, no struggle, there you go. (My subscription is now stored up high in a closet).

You know, it's possible that Brooks misinterpreted Oliver's intentions. After all, I did spy some haiku in a similar style of magazine not two months ago. But then there was that incident today in the back seat of the car coming home from a soccer game. Oliver was blurting out, "Boobies, boobies, boobies," over and over again. But maybe I'm reading more into that, too, because when I asked him why he was saying it he simply answered,

"Booby traps, Mom. Booby traps."

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

So true, so true...

Last week Oliver and I pushed our cart into the gardening section of Home Depot. On our way in, we passed a woman who was walking out in a big huff, ranting loudly about not getting her way, incompetent employees, etc., etc.

"Sheesh!" I mutter to Oliver. "Some people get so grumpy!"

In all earnestness he replies, "You mean, like you?"

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Kind of Blue

This is the title of a compilation of jazz tunes from Miles Davis. If you're a fan, you already know this. If you're not yet converted, check it out. It's also the title of today's blog entry because — well, read on.

My sister Lindsey emailed the family last week to say that she is adding a new feature to her blog ( called "Ask Lou". It's an advice column of sorts. So immediately a reply came asking Lou how to beat the blues. Without waiting for Lindsey to answer, my other sister Amy sent the following response (which I am cutting and pasting with her permission).

"I'm not Lou..but I have a few ideas to beat the blues...because I get them too!!
. sing the blues
. listen to the blues
. aquatherapy..take a bath, shower, go swimming, drink lots of water
. exercise
. do something nice for someone
. donate something
. send a small monetary gift to a charity
. organize some small area like your purse or dresser drawers
. go on a small spontaneous adventure somewhere you've never been
. make a christmas tree ornament
. do something purposely embarrassing like circling the free food sample loop at Costco two or three times
. get lost in a book
. close the curtains and run through your house naked ...dancing and singing to christmas music.
. heliotherapy...lay in the sun for a little while
. Pray in a new way that you haven't; skip the traditional opening and closing words and see what comes out.
. don't watch the news for a few days
. where yellow....even if it doesn't look good on you
. Tell the people you love...that you love them!!
. knock on your neighbors door and ask if you might borrow just a small squirt of hemmorhoid cream.
. put a few things in your recycle bin
. make a necklace
. be free . enjoy your blues."

Other things that are blue:

•the walls of the room where I am typing right now (robin egg shell)
•Brahm's eyes
•the cover of my journal when I was nine
•the house one block east (cerulean)
•October - "Into the Ocean" on my playlist
•my bathrobe
•the big jar in the kitchen holding bright yellow tulips – thanks, Lindsey!
•the following photos:

Lindsey (left) and I in 1998

Oh, 1978 or so - I'm guessing it's Easter by the dresses my sisters and I are wearing (I'm the one on Mom's hip).

Brooks outside the $400/month basement apartment we rented our first year of marriage. They must have been going for about $1/ft2 that year...