"She refused to be bored, chiefly because she wasn't boring." Zelda Fitzgerald

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Life in Quantity

There are veggies growing in the garden, limes ripening in the sunroom, birds nesting in the yard and jellies and their kin spawning in the sea.

It's my favorite time of year. Can't figure out how to get the laundry done or the dishes put away as you pretty much have to be indoors to complete either chore. Problems, problems.

This afternoon we spent some time down at the waterfront with some friends who live on a houseboat, sunshine and sea air arcing warmly onto their miniature, open deck.

We laid on our stomaches on the dock and watched a lion jelly pulse by, pried barnacles up to examine their parted, stony lips and then scooped up a mason jar full of an eddy of sea life. I had salt crusted on my fingers, flowers in my hair and a herd of happy little boys riding home together with the windows down all ruffled by the wild sea air. Good times.

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Tuesday, April 9, 2013

That's One Way To Get A Bath

Sometimes when you paint the house with your kids around there are moment of insanity. True story.

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Friday, April 5, 2013

Poetry Friday: Nest Song

Happy Poetry Friday! Its nesting season and all around the house we are watching pairs of birds defending territory, mate and build homes. In honor of all the bustle I am using one of my natural treasures as a writing prompt. I found this sweet little nest wedged into a dooryard shrub after all the leaves had come down in winter in the center of a secret maze of branches.

A bird is a dandy, a primping sheik,
A textile wizard, with a needled beak.
A nest is a circular, spiral of life,
An egg cup holding potential flight.
A chick is a greedy, squeaking wheel,
A pin-feather craft with a wobbling keel.
A flock is whirling, southward gust,
A chattering ballet in the autumn dusk.
A birder is a lonely and  desperate scout
A sentry of skies and feeder lookout.
A old nest in winter is his private proof,
An avian placard on the cupola roof.

Hope you all have a wonderful weekend! We are celebrating Ru's 7th birthday and there may be some bird watching, some nest hunting and eating of malted milk ball eggs.


Thursday, April 4, 2013

Frogs In The Sunroom

It was a good day full of sunshine and warmth and scratching things off my list that I have been meaning to do for years. Like catching wild frog eggs with my sons!

Frogs are hard to see...harder if you are between 2 and 7 and prone to wiggles. BUT...I persevered with my stillness coaching and we saw frogs. Several of them, mostly males of different colors, brown and green with touches of gold and black trim and one that was a dark russet orange. I also saw one female, pregnant with a big poofy clutch of eggs. She dived before the boys could follow my pointing finger.

I thought we were out if luck looking for eggs though. None. Not one cluster. And then I started seeing them, tucked almost into the leaves, visible when your head was tilted just so, sunlight hitting to surface of the vernal pond in a certain way. Like a cluster of black pearls just below the surface.

The boys were curious and amazed and each had to feel them and ask 40 questions because 20 is for slackers. We put one cluster off glistening eggs into a plastic Superman bowl and filled a juice bottle with extra pond water for later and took them home.

And now there are teeny, little frog babies growing in a fishbowl in my sunroom! :) Happy Thursday to me!

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Tuesday, April 2, 2013

First Greens

Its spring which means the first bits of green are appearing in the little scrub woods the boys and I frequent. One of the first plants shaking a leafy head is the garlic mustard. Its a ridiculously vigorous weed. The thing can go to seed and spread spawn after being pulled up for crying out loud....and its germination rate is out of sight. Handily, it is also highly edible.
While we were poking around in the woods the boys jumped off of stumps and threw sticks and Lockbox and I gathered fistfuls of garlic mustard leaves, hovering in hopeful rosettes of green over the carpet of brown leaf litter. With two handfuls from each of us we walked home up the sunny block with enough leafy green to fill a sandwich sized ziploc baggie.
Tonight I'm roasting a pork loin with olive oil and basil and the garlic mustard went into my baby, food processor to become pesto to spoon over zucchini noodles. There is a very special high that comes from the first green things of the year....that and the first juicy, slicing tomato. Gotta mark it down in the books!


Monday, April 1, 2013

Reggae Monday

The morning after a holiday always falls into a kind of Mommy-hangover zone. Today dawned all manic, and stressful, low on coffee and full of whining and missed targets and other good times. So we blundered on into the week, practically dizzy before it all began. Time for a little silliness, a little extra pep...

And thus Reggae Monday was invented; a cure for all ills.
It goes like this: Lockbox and I drink smooth, Jamaican coffee with extra cream, we cube mango flesh for the baby and laugh watching him eat it out of a little plastic dish, we laugh....a lot, we listen to Bob Marley and Michael Franti on Pandora and dance wildly in the kitchen and leftover Easter egg dye turns into spontaneous clothing dye projects. Then periodically all Mommy communication lapses into Reggae-speak thusly:

"Hey mon! Pick up de shoes. You gotta put 'em on de rack, yo!"

"Every one of de bikes bess be off the grass in five minutes mon! No kidding!"

"Wow! So many Legos in de box now! You boys be jammin'!"

And there is more laughing. By lunchtime we were standing around seriously discussing getting one single dreadlock each. Maybe in mermaid colors? Little seashells embedded in the strand? Will it be Reggae Monday every week? Stay tuned.