Showing posts with label COVID-Vivid. Show all posts
Showing posts with label COVID-Vivid. Show all posts

Friday, September 30, 2022

all set to start

 Navaratri celebrations tonight!


"Take homes" (snack boxes and gift bags) and our miniature magic forest "Golu" are ready for guests!

Tuesday, September 27, 2022

(peek)

I'm not ready for what people call "peak colors" and "peak fall" yet, but this tiny peek is okay by me. I've kinda missed the outdoors.

I haven't been on any long treks recently. L, who's the person with whom I've hiked the most in the last three years, was quite sick with Covid and I couldn't bear to be on any of our usual paths without her.

However, Big A (my second-best in this regard) was here on another 36-hour visit today, so we went for 'a full Sparty' at a very brisk pace and solved all our summer problems (theoretically at least)!

Pic: The Red Cedar with hints of yellow and red in the bordering foliage. 

Sunday, August 28, 2022

Six on a Sunday

*     Pic: Just a silly picture Nu and I took the other day. We like squirrels. And we like how this one seems to have claimed a local church. 

*     Speaking of church--UU was one of our first stops  today. Nu is helping in the little kids' room instead of doing R.E. with his own set and liking it. Also, the MI Lieutenant Governor was at the service and everyone waved to him. Singing has been back for a while, and I'm loving it.

*     Between meeting CF (massage) and BES (dinner prep) and EM (birthday celebration) in person this weekend and  marathon text threads and FaceTimes with the cousins, fam, and friends--It was a rather intense social weekend.

*     On the other hand, I did a TON of work today with new students. It's a Sunday, but then it's the start of the semester and they're new and seemed a bit lost, so... 

*     All the syllabuses and diagnostics for tomorrow are uploaded on Canvas. So there's nothing left to do but get some sleep, hope the documents stay stable, and look forward to tomorrow with that classic first-day-combination of jittery excitement and flustery edginess. 

*     Bye-bye sabbatical!

Tuesday, August 23, 2022

Day #1 Notes

Nu woke up early and was ready for school in plenty of time. But still too nervy to take a formal "first day of school" pic, so this is what I got as he headed for the school bus. (Pic okayed by Nu.) I guess we're out of practice; Nu napped for hours after getting back from a 4-hour school half-day.

It was a busy work day for me made passable by good work friends and their side chats, emails, calls, and also genius gifs and memes they made themselves. 

At the end of the day, it was nice to hang out out with Big A (even if only on Portal) and he was happy to find and open up his Boss Day present (which I'd hidden in a cabinet while we were in MKE). Scout and Huck predictably got excited for treats when they heard Nu and me sing the "Boss Day Song" (which is just the regular "Happy Birthday" repurposed). I think they're beginning to recognize Big A's voice on the Portal and think Dada "lives in a box now." Or at least that's the understanding we've assigned to them.

And finally, I have a new CASA case with four children--it sounds daunting and difficult to take on at this moment... but I keep thinking how much more difficult for the kids themselves... And so I will.

Monday, August 22, 2022

just another manic Monday

This picture was shared on the college's social media, so I suppose it's ok to share. I was going to joke about looking for me on the far left in this picture... but I can actually espy myself (it helps that I'm so brown and am wearing a mask).  

No one at work said a thing about my facial piercings, which I took as a sign that people either didn't notice it or were too freaked out by it. I miss besties KB, JG, CF being at work because they would totally have blurted out questions... and it would be fun coming from them.

Long day: lots of new info and expectations for the upcoming year + some initial prep for a travel course over boxed lunches with CC.

Then I took care of my babies. Nu wanted to spend a couple of hours at the mall with a friend (I counted mall-walking as exercise today); drove to At's Chipotle to morale boost the unionizing crew with some old-fashioned conversation (all the "Union Strong!" orders I'd been placing via the app for $1.67 chips kept showing up with my name on it--unsure of that's a glitch or corporate interference); and now I'm curled up with Scout and Huck. Scout just did his happy sigh, so all is right with the world in this moment.

Friday, August 19, 2022

also new...

Sometime last weekend when I was taking stock of the summer (and its disappointments) I woke up one morning convinced that what would make things better would be (a) a Costco membership (b) a piercing. 

I managed to talk myself out of the Costco--I think we'd be in danger of wasting food if we bought in Costco quantities. But the feeling about the piercing didn't go away...

And so I made an appointment. When the time came, I wanted to wimp out, but Nu said I was already old and not getting any younger and if I wanted to do something I should do it now.  It was the best advice. 

(Nu also came to the appointment with me, helped me choose jewelry, and held my hand when I wanted...)

And now I have bilateral eyebrow piercings.

I like them.

Tuesday, August 16, 2022

only connect


so open that door 
or open this book
I open my mouth 
wait for an answer 
                           ...answer always already  
                           the knocking of my heart
                            promises folding around  
                             surrounding me like love
                                                               ...love you, for I love you 
                                                                 and I know how I love you
                                                               every one of you, I know you
                                                               can remind me of no one else 


Pic: Picnic at KV's... so many generations of women and children. I appreciated this lovely summer afternoon with Nu: destressing, snacking, reconnecting, and cuddling babies. (It was especially welcome after an all-morning, in-person meeting for our departmental re-visioning.)

Sunday, August 07, 2022

puppy pile


One of the grownups at the get together today was allergic to dogs, so Scout and Huckie had to stay in their room. 

Three of the little ones decided to stay in there with them because "puppies shouldn't be in timeout by themselves." 

(Not pictured: my big kids, At and Nu, who are around somewhere.)

Friday, August 05, 2022

unexpected sweetness

When we dropped Big A off at the train station the other day, I noticed a huge new sports complex on Service Rd., so I took L and Nu to see it on this morning's walk.  

Except--by the time we marveled over how quickly the complex had gone up and commiserated over how we wouldn't be able to traipse over the fields as a shortcut as we used to--there was a very long and slow train stuck on the tracks blocking our way home. 

Thankfully, Nu suggested we go to Chapelure, and thankfully, I carry a credit card on the little pocket on my phone so we did. Coffee for L, tea for me, a three-course breakfast for Nu, a chance to sit on the patio and pretend we were in Paris (Nu had a croissant), and it was an unexpected treat on an ordinary Friday morning.

Pic: When LB and TB came over for dinner, they brought this arrangement of flowers from their garden. It's arranged in a sundae glass and has two straws it it. So cute!

Thursday, August 04, 2022

sweet set

A sweet evening for Nu, Scout, Huck, and me with JG and EM today. A lot of jabbering, joking, and joshing. JG used to do standup comedy in NYC and EM won't take any BS, so it was very lively.

EM brought the most delectable set of sweets from Make it Sweet.  

JG brought me a Turkish porcelain plate to complete my "set." (Nu and I won the first one at a U.N. quiz a couple of years ago; then I picked up the second one when KB was moving offices and discarded stuff; now thanks to JG, I have a third one.)

Pic: sweets and my "set."

Wednesday, August 03, 2022

haphazardly

I sent a 15-second loop of the Red Cedar flowing under the Spartan Bridge to the family chat, because I felt we could all use it today. 

*

I walked A LOT today: four miles with Nu, two miles with Big A after Nu's medical appointment and my NWSA meeting, and then another four miles by myself because I felt kind of jumpy and wanted to tire myself out. 

*

SD, my dear friend of 25 years who lives in DC and was going to spend the rest of the week with us here, had to postpone her trip due to a Covid exposure. But we already have a new date and new plans: she's going to come in the last week of September and maybe visit one of my classes, so I'm excited about that. 

*

An unlooked for bonus is that I'd arranged for small dinner parties tomorrow and the day after to entertain her. Those gatherings are still happening, so it'll still be somewhat convivial around here.  

Monday, August 01, 2022

we won't talk (about)


suggestion
no one called out but I looked again
tree light pouring through me

provocation
where I once felt nothing but abyss
I hear love spread like a gasp 

acceleration 
tonight I may fall for rumors and loss
for I will never stop migrating 

emanation 
ask me how I can show up alone again
jumping from caesura to synapse



Pic: Baker Woods with L and Nu.

Note: Last week's cousin trip didn't happen because someone tested positive for Covid; this week's SD visit might not happen because someone else tested positive for Covid... I am so tired of this pandemic and missing people I really want to see.

Saturday, July 09, 2022

picnic cookies and cat cafés

I headed to RS's mom's memorial service today. I was there mainly to support RS, but it felt poignant learning that her mom remade her life in her 40s--getting a divorce, going back to school, and becoming a social worker. The grownup grandkids, now teachers themselves, remembered fondly how she would take them on picnics to the hill behind her apartment complex and they'd feast on homemade sandwiches and Milano cookies. Fittingly, there were Milano cookies at the outdoor reception later.

While I was gone all afternoon, Big A took Nu to the cat café where Nu played with all the cats he wanted to and had a great time. Big A and I are both allergic (and I'm mildly  ailurophobic) so poor Nu has to make do with visiting. I've been informed that when Nu is grownup, he will live with cats and rats and that we can take allergy meds when we want to visit. I think that's very fair.

Pic: Nu making a cat friend (and Big A's reflection).

 

Friday, July 08, 2022

Make some noise (rattles, anklets, and whistles! O my)

More of Nu's kandi-craft... These little (they fit in the palm of my hand) star-shaped rattles make such a happy sound. The beads inside the rattle are heart-shaped. They're not visible, but it's very important to Nu that there are tiny hearts inside.

It reminded me a bit of the anklet in Silapadikaram The Story of an Anklet  and I was gratified that Nu remembered the plot-point about how there were rubies inside the heroine's anklet and only pearls in the queen's.  

We picked up Big A from the train station yesterday--horrifyingly for me and Nu who tend to be very diligent about masking--he hadn't worn a mask on the Amtrak, so we made him test at home. Also, WTH. I mean he seemed suitably chastened, but I thought we were on the same page about this.

And I got my Bluey car back! A couple I met on a shuttle in an airport parking lot a while ago told me about "Save A Deer" whistles, so I'm putting some on this weekend. Please stay away from me on the highway, deer!

Sunday, July 03, 2022

what could be

One more day at the reunion, and then we left for home a whole day early as Nu is (and hence we all are) in the midst of an unrelated crisis.

We managed to fit a lot into the 24 hours we were in YS, though. Peaches yesterday for reunion drinks, Glen Garden for flowers for Big A's mom with whom we were staying, Toy Company and Dark Star to keep Nu occupied, planned hangouts like the one pictured, and of course all the random running into old friends and neighbors. 

It's difficult not to feel a bit of nostalgia for the YS years and wonder...Will we ever move back there again? What might our lives have been like if we'd stayed?  

Saturday, July 02, 2022

mellow

In Yellow Springs, OH for Big A's high school reunion. I casually thought it was the 20th... but no it's the 30th!

Since we lived in YS (2008-2012), some are my friends too. But as the outsider, I was surprised by how much people remembered from 30 years ago. Everyone remembers Big A's infamous exploits (he'd have gotten juvie for his Ex-Lax cookies for sure these days!). But people were also saying to each other how kind people had been, how someone was the big sibling they didn't have at home, how they'd been made welcome although they were new in town. 

It was definitely a taste of the old YS--all the once high-schoolers in this picture from progressive, hippie, biracial, LGBTQ families or living near families who were--growing up in an environment like that must have been so formative for them. What it must have been like to take all of that for granted... 30 years ago. The person who went into the army right after high school said how he was asked if "gays should be in the military" and that he'd responded "gay people have always been in the military, maybe you didn't know it." These people must have pushed change in the world outside of their bubble.

Also: we've been having a bit of a tough time at home because of some teen behaviors/choices/consequences--this was a good reminder that high school isn't forever, and hopefully, we will just remember the mellow highlights in a few years.

Thursday, June 30, 2022

normal...

Nu is completing all the school assignments he missed when he was sick, and JG very kindly consented to be interviewed for the "life in the 1980's" segment. 

We'd had a gnarly start to the day where I suspected I'd have to take Nu to the E.R.; so I was particularly glad with how fun and normal the rest of the day actually turned out--first a long visit from JG and then winding down with the new season of Umbrella Academy after dinner.

Plus I updated details of vacation week as #LaterPosts!

Friday, June 24, 2022

Barcelona 1

Woke up in our futuristic space station-themed hotel room to a view of aeons-old surrounding hills. Big A watched a YouTube video to figure out why we were going around in an unproductive loop on the Eurail online pass--and he figured it out! Smooth sailing through all our other train reservations after this.

We had an early guided tour booked for La Sagrada Familia. Nu and I left early and walked around while we waited for the tour to start and Big A to show up after getting our train tickets. The tour started. Big A was in a taxi, but not there yet. When I asked the tour facilitator if we could wait a few minutes for Big A, I was told "He has lost his chance." I suspect we'll be quoting this for ages. 😂 I made up my mind to ask the tour guide a bunch of questions to delay our entry into the cathedral so Big A could join us. And then I screamed because someone ran up to me and whispered "Boo" in my ear. Big A!

La Sagrada Familia was more than I had even imagined. Even Nu was impressed. My sister remembered right away that I used to pore over a coffee-table book on Gaudi twenty years ago.... that's how long I've been waiting to see this. But nothing could prepare me for this ongoing, gaudy, excessive, earnest eruption of construction. And they have plans and reliefs all over the place, but the entire thing is a bonkers celebration of whimsy and religious fervor. 

It was a hot day, and we'd spent much of the morning outside, so after a tapas break we piled into a taxi back to the hotel for a siesta. While we were chatting with the driver he said that his favorite place in Barcelona was Park Guell, which was on our list for that afternoon--that made everyone in the taxi super happy. Post-siesta, however we found that tickets for the Park were sold out--so we peeked at what we could from the outside and headed to the beach. 

Beaches are my happy place, and the Mediterranean was particularly blue and mysterious. We left pink Big A in the shade of the promenade and Nu and I spent a long, long time walking on the pier and sitting in meditative silence by the waves. We had gotten news of the overturning of Roe and the possible domino effect on other personal protections at the start of the afternoon and that was weighing on me. Then began a string of texts from friends urging me to show up at the state capitol to protest.

It made me feel out-of-touch and selfish, but we had reservations for dinner, so we went. It was a small, earnest place that served us course after course of delicious, farm-fresh food for over three hours. And while we were wishing At had come too, he sent us a sweet picture of him at lunch with Grandma S who's visiting Lansing for a Banjo workshop

#LaterPost

Tuesday, June 21, 2022

To Madrid

When American Airlines wouldn't accept digital copies of our Covid vaccination cards, I thought this somewhat last-minute trip would be canceled. But after an onsite, expensive, and anxiety-inducing rapid antigen test and two hours of scurrying from test center to check-in counter with contradictory and unclear instructions, we finally came into possession of our boarding passes. 

And it's always good to know we don't have Covid. An uneventful flight with lots of beautiful and brilliant sky vistas. We'll be in Madrid by morning.

#LaterPost

Saturday, June 18, 2022

"An Evening In India"

Not sure if that was foolhardy or plain foolish, but in the midst of all the ongoing drama I decided to go ahead and host the "Evening in India" fundraiser anyway.

Honestly, I didn't have the energy to cancel it and communicate with the eight people who bid $80 to sign up, and then have to find another date that worked for everyone, and then I'd have that date looming on the horizon. It seemed easier to just go ahead and make the four-course meal I'd promised for today. 

So I did.

I was on my feet all day and didn't have time to think about anything but taste and temperature and coordinating time. (And unwrapping and arranging the desserts, which I got readymade at Swagath.) 

And then I had a blast writing a menu and talking to a room full of people I don't know very well. 

I'm so weird.

the weekend's odds and ends

In all, a quiet and gentle end to the weekend.  A neighborhood potluck we didn't go to, but I did go to the opening of RR's new well...