I really have been neglectful, and I’m sure it bothers me more than it does you.
Here are my excuses: Belated 1oth anniversary celebration, birthday dinners, prepping for preschool, out-of-town family gathering, out-of-town training program, bunny-sitting, outdoor concerts, frozen yogurt and a giant surprise 30th birthday party for my baby sister. Oh, and doctor appointments… nausea… extra sleep… late night ice cream…
For those yet unaware, we are expecting our second child in early February, and he’s happily making himself known on a daily basis. All three of us are excited, along with our invaluable friends and relatives. Today marks 18 weeks… it’s gone so fast, yet the 22 week road ahead feels so long.
So, parenting two small humans is a breeze, right? Barely noticeable increase in demands, right?
Trying to fool myself is futile – I’ve been a nanny.
In the meantime, autumn holds all sorts of adventures for our family, though I’m not quite ready to give up on summer. Summer means the DQ up the street is still open.
Considering my dislike for the cold, tendency to deal with SAD and passion for spring, I think I’ve done quite well with winter in recent history. Wonderful traditions like Winterfest and Chinese New Year, not to mention a small human who loves snow and wearing boots, make the season cozy and reflective rather than isolating and oppressive.
But. It’s February, and I admit to tiring of the barren and monochromatic world outside each and every window. I long for green, the sound of birds, sandals, psychedelic music, safe roads and the sight of my beloved neighbors lounging in their lush back yard (with their garden and their chiminea and their grill and their speakers pumping WYCE… *sigh*…).
Also, I finally succumbed to a nasty winter bug, and rode the roller coaster of fever, sinus pain and digestive upset that came with it.
Right this minute, as I write to you, sun is pouring on the snow outside. The slightly golden hue is fleeting, but I’m harnessing it to drift back to one of my favorite summers, and listen to Umphrey’s McGee cover a laid back tune of my childhood.
I have to step back for a minute and pretend it’s summer.
For the most part, I feel like I’ve been doing really well this year – not being too much of a grinch, hating on the snow or dreading the frequency of social obligations. Having a child helps a lot. Small things like Christmas lights and falling snow take on a new magic when you watch someone else discover them.
But. This is the lull. My birthday has passed, Solstice and Christmas are well over a week away, and I want a break from the snow (which Just. Kept. Fallingthisweek).
My mood is less candlelight and hammered dulcimer, and a little more free-moving and laid back. There is anticipation and appreciation in the air. Things are good physically, mentally and professionally, and I just want to bask for a while.
So, as I’m due to be creative, please visit the letters to my ancestors (above links), and groove to one of my favorite live Umphrey’s McGee covers (above video). The footage is not the best available, and not from a show I attended, but this rendition and video of Toto’s Africa is where I am today.
Just some proof to document a real dip in the lake this summer. Not THE lake of course… Lake Michigan is just too cold this year.
We once again visited our lovely neighbors at their campsite, and the weather was perfect for a little Wabasis beach time. This is us before tucking in to a dinner of prawns, corn on the cob, veggies and grapes. Oh, and Manhattans.
Still, I try to enjoy it. I appreciate our sunny days when the temps are only in the mid 60s and leaves reflecting the warm side of the color wheel drift around the lawn. I happily stir a pot of black bean chili. I spend two days straight in a soft brown cardigan.
I listen to Ben Folds 5, Counting Crows and Tori Amos (my ‘fall music’ since the late 90s, when the gloomy seasons were all the rage for goth kids and alternateens).
Well, kind of. More specifically, July 10, 2011, was the last time I hung out with a friend and drank indulgent quantities of wine by large bodies of water without being concerned about caring for my child.
I probably would have behaved differently had I known I was four weeks pregnant. But I didn’t, so I didn’t.