Showing posts with label Family. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Family. Show all posts

Saturday, January 16, 2021

"Beam Me Up"


Mostly teaching prep and house/meal prep (my Imperfect Foods box came) today. 

Big A was mostly experienced as a napper in various settings around the house (he's coming off a spate of nightshifts). 

This "Beam-Me-Up" action in the sky is from a long walk with Nu and B.S. and it made us chuckle. Lots of talk, sharing, support, and a huge, delicious loaf of BS's banana bread that Nu and I loved (i.e. have almost finished) this afternoon.

Rumpus Room sleepover tonight with Nu, Scout, and Huck, because At left for college this morning and this is how we cope. 

Friday, January 15, 2021

Snapshot


Here I am, bookended by the two human babies who showed up randomly in their matching Christmas jammies for some Olympic-standard cuddling.

It snowed all day, so this was perfect.

(Nu and I are crushed that At will be heading back to college this weekend...)

Thursday, January 14, 2021

Pongal 2021


Most years we're already back at school before Pongal comes around and the usual celebration is something hurried when the sun is no longer high in the sky.  

This year, we got to celebrate in the sunshine and make our offering at a reasonable daytime hour, with fragrant narcissus and paperwhites rounding out the pongal rice and jaggery laddu on the offering tray. To the millenary vedic sun salutation sloka*, which I was translating for the kids as I went, I added a prayer for enough Vit. D to help us through the pandemic. 

Cousin P had sent the cousin groupchat a set of truly lovely pics of their traditional celebration replete with sugarcane, outdoor hearth, and silk-clad kids. So I sent this pic back to balance things out. 

Not pictured: The very un-Pongal looking kids, one in the Phoebe Bridgers limited edition Punisher sweater they got from their older sib and the other human kid in the pink Mean Girls/Karl Marx mashup tee I gave them.


----------------------------
*Japakusuma Samkaasham Kashyapeyam Mahadhyuthim,

Tamorim Sarva Paapagnam Pranathosmi Divakaram

[You radiant as the Japa flower, heir of Kashyapa, the creator of days

destroy my darkness and all corruption I pray to you, O Sun.]

Tuesday, January 12, 2021

Bigger than me

I knew I was in a new era ten years ago when I was listening to a song, and it didn't seem to be about me (in the way young girls/women are the automatic muse of so many pop songs). The song was Depeche Mode's "Enjoy the Silence" and the words were: 

Oh my little girl
All I ever wanted
All I ever needed
Is here in my arms
Words are very unnecessary
They can only do harm

In my head, the "little girl" became a reference to Nu who had just told their first lie and had been reprimanded, and was now sad. 

Anyway--I was reminded of this because Tommy Raskin's life (yes, I haven't moved on) reminds me not of my own weltschmerzen, but my children's joy, their yearning for justice, for full lives, how the pandemic is the chief thief of joy RN, and their frustrations with the world... and it terrifies me.

(Pic from walk this afternoon with LB; Red Cedar River--the mallards followed me around!)

Monday, January 11, 2021

yes but also no


                    The instructions surprise:               perhaps I will solve gravity              or simply realize how unready 

                    "pour the saliva" they say              chorus my saliva's spectacle           how random, how to unbait sighs

                    I once described a snake                exist/lament/impact/about               the junction of having breath back

                    'pouring' itself down a hole             the scratching exhaustion               having my back, trusting offspring

                    the kids were so freaked out           of dying on tv every day                 to try to sidestep the cracks



Sunday, January 10, 2021

Spoke too soon...

There was so much sunshine yesterday--it felt brilliant and I thought I was handling things ok, but today was a bit of a BIG crybaby day. I disappeared to cry in my closet, I cried and looked for cuddles, I cried through some cuddles. I couldn't get it right; no one could get it right. I did the usual things that cheer me up (walk, star, snack, cook, bath, chats, distance meet, etc.), but nothing would take. At least I can say I tried

Kinda like I did with this holiday card, which I had printed but didn't mail... and probably will never mail at this point.

Apartment Therapy's astrology section forecasts that I will have a "fruitful social life" this year, so perhaps not all is lost? Ha.


Saturday, January 09, 2021

Peace Out

It was a peace-keeping kind of day around here: mediating between people who hadn't done their homework, people who'd fallen behind on housework, tracking down errant dishes (Scout and Nu, and At), errant books (At, Big A, Nu) providing emotional support for assorted causes from grad school apps to DnD character building, and trying to fake an interest in topics like conspiracy theories and eye boogers, etc.

Thankfully, my flu-shot site doesn't hurt so much anymore and I made some progress with work and teaching projects + got things arranged around the house in preparation for the crush of the oncoming weeks as term gets going. Excited! Anxious! 

Wednesday, January 06, 2021

Wednesday's Insanity

What an extraordinary day. Woke up to news of Georgia electing Rev. Warnock (John Lewis' pastor) and Ossoff (a sometime John Lewis intern) to the senate. Breakfast felt like an upbeat celebration. In hindsight, I wish we'd had more time to sit with this moment.

At 3:00, Nu was on their daily online-school-accountability call with Grandma S, and were told that they really should go watch the news. So we did. Watching the storming of capitol buildings by white supremacists was surreal, frustrating, and infuriating. Activists from ADAPT and BLM certainly did not get the 'I'll open the gates, hold your hand going down the stairs, and take selfies with you' treatment from the police. 

By 4:00, I was in a meeting with one of the finance guys at work who wasn't interested in the news and kept referring to higher ed as "our industry." I can't help thinking this kind of obliviousness and corporatization contributed to the mess we're in.

Monday, January 04, 2021

Monday Memoir

I saw the cutest snowperson when I ambled over to L's house earlier today! Their bangs are like mine, but even that detail couldn't detract from their quintessential cuteness.

Nu's back in (virtual) school today, so everyone is back to waking early so we can have breakfast together and build each other up... apparently, we do this with cuddles, and riddles, and jokes, and teasing putdowns.

Speaking of school... I miss my students. There're lots of meetings starting Wednesday and I started today by writing to every one of my advisees. It's re-entry time for all of us although classes won't start until after MLK Day.

Speaking of days... It's my Boss Day! My dinner pick was poke, which we made together; my entertainment pick was Veep... again!

After everyone headed off to their rooms, I found the tribute Rep. Raskins and his spouse wrote for their child Tommy and I weep to think that someone who brought so much joy and goodness to people didn't feel enough of it themselves. 

(Related: I think of Aaron Swartz frequently. Sometimes I think about them multiple times a week--especially when my students are doing internet research. I resent that I was introduced to Aaron Swartz through his obituary--it's a particularly downhearted way to learn about an extraordinary person. I thought I'd written about this before, but a quick search revealed nothing.)

Saturday, January 02, 2021

There and Back Again


This is what I saw when I woke up this morning and I took a picture of the backyard--through the window--because I didn't think I would go outside.

But... it's At's 'Boss Day' and he picked a really simple dinner--but we didn't have enough bread to make veggie melts for everyone, so I put on my big girl winter clothes and set off for Whole Foods.


I soon realized that the roads HAD been plowed, but Big A had abandoned his car in the middle of the driveway when he came home from work this morning and was taking a nap. So either I could drive the car that has "DEFUND 50" on the front plates (I have a feeling I'm too brown for those plates) or walk. 

So I walked.


Friday, January 01, 2021

Beginning as we mean to go on



A walk in the snow with these loves... one practice I've hoped for at the beginning of many new years. 

(Yes, it was just down the street to wish TB a happy birthday before curling up cozily for most of the evening--but I'm counting it as a tiny win for today.)

Thursday, December 31, 2020

Rising Up

I've loved this tree on the Red Cedar River from the first time I noticed it. Especially the branch that looks like it was laid low but decided to aim upwards anyway.

As we close out 2020 (with LB's food exchange, SD's Zoom party in MD, and calls and texts from all over the world), I want for all of us to rise up in every way in 2021.

And I'd really, really like to see my sister and parents.

Wednesday, December 30, 2020

"But Different than the Day Before" (Part 3892772)

Ha. How many versions of this 2020 day can there be?

It was icy in the streets and a very homebound day scaffolded by all kinds of media. 

A long yoga session on Mirror, hours of reading, syllabus prep, an adoring Prince retrospective online, and then stringing a video-list of Nirvana-Bikini Kill-Foo Fighters for Nu (the Nirvana and Bikini Kill were kinda for the WGS class). Nu has very limited screen time these days, so accompanying me on rabbit holes of 90s nostalgia is ok with them. (Evil parent laugh.)

Big A's "Impossible" spaghetti sauce for dinner, some Veep with At (from whom I received this puppy pic) and now I'm going to give Bridgerton a try by myself. 

Tuesday, December 29, 2020

One down...


I rode with Big A to the hospital and waited in the parking lot while he got his first shot of the Pfizer vaccine. 

There had been a previous round for his ED, but in his typical way, he'd decided that since he'd had Covid and presumably had some antibodies, he'd wait for this later round and let colleagues who hadn't had Covid go first. 💗 

Earlier this year--before the vaccine debuted--I wondered if anyone would be sending out holiday cards. I needn't have wondered. I think we actually got more cards than in previous years... there were nearly ten just today. 

Alongside the photocards of cute cousins and niblings, was one from our college prez with a handwritten greeting to me + Big A and a kind note of thanks to me. Tenure means being able to say how warm and wonderful I think this is without worrying about sounding sycophantic. 😛

Monday, December 28, 2020

Ruminations in a very minor key

1) A quiet day, still sort of recovering from Christmas. Did not want to be in closed quarters with strangers today, so I'm glad LB had cilantro to spare and was able to drop some off so I didn't have to go to the store before I made dinner tonight. 

2) Nu announced it was National Card Game Day, and we played Rummy, Coup, and Smart Ass at various times in the day to observe it 'properly.' 

3) A couple of weeks ago I gave myself some terrible bangs, but I must have decided they weren't terrible enough, so I gave myself more bangs around 1 or 2 am. Big A worked last night, and when he came home this morning, I spent like 20 minutes repeatedly yelling "Don't LOOK at me; DON'T look at me." He offered to cut my bangs next time, but we're at least four-five weeks away from being able to attempt repair. I miss going to the hairdresser, and I'm bored with my hair.

4) I can't believe I haven't brought in the hammocks and throw pillows from the backyard yet... it's not that I'm that lazy, I'm just awfully prone to wishful thinking.

Sunday, December 27, 2020

By degrees


Poor Scout paid the price for repeated counter-surfing with an upset tummy. At and Nu paid too, as they got to clean him up and change the couch covers in the rumpus room. That's been the excitement today.

In other news, the pandemic rages on, and I'm dismayed at how many people on my social media and WhatsApp seem not to have let it affect their holiday plans that much. I know people have to do whatever gets them through this time, so I keep my thoughts to myself and I've never actually said anything. But it feels personal--Big A has to deal with it in the ED and the rest of us at home have been making all sorts of accommodations and adjustments around it. And of course none of this protects Big A or us if the rest of the world simply carries on in pre-pandemic ways.

Anyway.

Nu is beside me, purposely mumbling things into the Apple remote and laughing their head off at the AI suggestions. Also, Nu has been following me around for the past few days telling me about people they know vaguely at school. For example: I know N vaguely. Once they just asked me in gym: "Are you gay?" And I said "yes." And then their friend K shouted, "I knew it!"  Several rounds of three-degrees-of-middle-school later, I'm beginning to sense how much my usually too-cool and happy-to-be alone kid must miss the daily social interactions of being at school.

Thursday, December 24, 2020

Almost Christmas

10:43 pm

In lieu of our usual Christmas Eve candlelight service we drove through a nearby luminaria display...

Nu and At are in bed/their rooms with their new jammies and all of their book presents...

I've prepped the breakfast pudding and the (store-bought) cinnamon rolls...

A Zoom is set up to open presents with the grandparents at 10:00 am tomorrow.


10:46 pm

Time to get back to my novel now...

Wednesday, December 23, 2020

"Hot Ones"


I didn't know what to make of it when one of the kids asked me, "Do you know Hot Ones?" 

Apparently, it's a long-running show where people eat progressively spicier chicken wings/cauliflower as they are being interviewed by host Sean Evans. The fam watched the Padma Lakshmi and Gordon Ramsay episodes with me to catch me up.

It's the 23rd of the month a.k.a. Big A's 'Boss Day,' and he decided that he wanted to recreate Hot Ones at home. We have a lot of hot sauces! 

Nu and I "chickened out" after the seventh; At and Big A made it to the end (obviously, Scout and Huck got some chicken but no hot sauce). Big A and I even tried to play some Buzztime Trivia to recreate some of that old eating-chicken-wings-at-Buffalo-Wild-Wings magic. Also, I did a mashup of this hot wings show and Ang's outdated greeting in ATLA to come up with "Flameo Hot Ones" just to annoy everyone. That was today's success.

Monday, December 21, 2020

I used to do it for hours in fancy (yoga) pants...

I used to do it for hours in fancy (yoga) pants... but today I did it in my jammies, for 15 minutes and I feel good... at least about restarting my yoga practice. You know when it would have been most useful? Every single day I didn't do it, probably.

Made a winter solstice meal (stew, roasted veggie salad, biscuits, and apple cider hot toddies with brandy) to share with BS and EM for good cheer. We'd planned to build a fire in the firepit, but it began to hail, so we lit some candles indoor instead. 

LB and TB were having their own solstice celebration and I was supposed to head over after dinner, but I stayed home, had a long boozy chat with EM and then Zoom-ed into JL's book club meeting of Mexican GothicI hadn't read it, but no one was talking about the book anyway. We haven't met in so long and everyone's hair was SO long!

I'm inordinately excited about yoga, and hangouts, and the two minutes of extra daylight we'll get tomorrow.