One Reason

My wonderful, spectacular, amazing 10 YO artist made a quail family for me. It’s so sweet!

Because he’s not just an artist, but a brilliant storyteller as well, he inscribed the picture with an anecdote including dialogue and a dramatic set-up.

Yes, there is one reason why he loves me. And that reason is because one day I didn’t make him go to school until he finished some portion of some video game. I’m just awesome like that.

The 7 YO also has a gift ready for me — also a school project. Aren’t mothers everywhere indebted to teachers? Since I haven’t had a chance to open the 7 YO’s gift yet, I figured I would post a photo of her holding produce from her garden, which provides yummy goodness for us and our neighbors.

I know. Her eyes are closed. It’s rare that I get a good photo of her with her eyes open. It runs in the family.

This is a typical photograph of my mother. She’s an awesome mom. I love my mom and I swear she wasn’t drinking when this photo was taken — or in the 537 other photos I have of her with her eyes closed (well, maybe she was in some of them).

Considering my son has one reason to love me and my daughter photographs like my mother and my mother is a teacher and teachers make kids give mothers Mother’s Day gifts and I have two gifts, I’m thinking I’m doing an okay job. Or else I’m confused.

Happy Mother’s Day to all you fabulous mothers out there!

May the 4th

Happy Unofficial International Star Wars Day everyone. May the 4th be with you! The 4th was definitely with this crafty knitter!

Craftzine is all over the multiple ways a person could represent through crafty goodness the gravity of this date. Alternatively you can grab the kiddos to combine your love for screen time, crafts, and conflicts in space with Star Wars Stuff to Do.

I wasn’t sure if the boss lady would give me the day off to reflect on the global, nay, universal importance of the 4th, so I called in sick. My laundry definitely appreciates it.

****On Edit
* Today’s the day that begging Star Wars style just might work.

(via The Huffington Post)

* The 10 YO boy felt this post needed music. Well, here’s a wealth of SW sound from Blue Harvest, but here’s his favorite tune as of late:

Epiphany, or 20CMB10 as we like to call it

It’s Three Kings Day – Epiphany! We acknowledged the 12 Days of Christmas by being lazy about cleaning up our tree and then this morning, all four of us stepped outside in the frozen tundra of the desert (the lows last night must have been in the 40s — BURR!) to bless the house.

God of Light, bless our house and our family. May this be a place of peace and health. May each member of this family cultivate the gifts and graces you have bestowed, dedicating our talents and works for the good of all.

Make this house a shelter in the storm and a haven of rest for all in need of your warmth and care. And when we go out from this place, may we never lose sight of that Epiphany star.

As we go about our work, our study, our play, keep us in its light and in your love.

It’s a Methodist prayer and we are Episcopalian, but like God really cares. I also don’t think God cares that the marking of the door with the date and initials of the kings should be done in chalk and over the door. We don’t have chalk. My kids’ teachers use dry erase and it seems to work miracles in the classroom. It looks good, right?


This version has the added benefit of being mobile. When the landlords kick us out so they can move in (whenever that will be because they just let us know things are “progressing slower than expected”), we’ll just take our blessing with us. That tile is a gift from my boss. She’s way cool like that and I say so knowing full well she doesn’t read this blog.

Kings’ Day means no more tree. What a mess! Better get out the vacuum.


Wah, wah, waaaaaaah.


I replaced the broken belt with a new one, which quickly burned through like the first after I made a big show to the kids that they had to learn to fix such things. Stink and smoke later, both kids stared at me with bitter disappointment in their eyes. I’m going to try a third belt to salvage the vacuum because maybe I didn’t make entirely sure that the brush was rotating properly. Also, I have to show everyone I’m right and that buying a new vacuum would be wasteful. Until then, the broom does an adequate job.

Christmas is cleaned up. Thank you letters, where appropriate (only to the most elderly of family members), are written. Presents put away. Sadly, the end of Christmas means no more of these (from a former boss),


or worse, no more of these (from the attendance clerk at my son’s school).


I like my gifties. Maybe I can craft a convincing argument that all my friends and family should resolve that in 2010, they will give me awesome gifts all year long. Maybe Hawt Mz could send home another empty bag of these cookies.

Anyone? Anyone?

Christmas Gifts

Gifts we gave. We made all our gifts this year, including zipper pulls for the cousins’ backpacks.


Gifts for the kids. The tree is propped up by presents especially selected by our loved ones for us. Some of us were excited and some of us played it cool.

The leather jacket emphasizes the cool, don’t you think?


Gifts for the dog. Toys marked “chew me” don’t last long around these parts.


Gifts for the future. I pray that I have enough of my children’s great grandmother’s genes to look this good in my mid 80s. She works out every day. Bleh.


Gifts to make me cry. Caddo Artist also gave handmade gifts. It’s too bad I couldn’t catch the detail on the beading along with the way it catches the light. Then again, all I’m trying to pass along is that people not on her Christmas list should be jealous. I’m jealous of myself!

My mom told me that I would have to wait until she died to get this scarf, just like she had to wait until my grandmother died. I didn’t have to wait and how nice is it that my mom is alive? She also recounted in a lovely illuminated letter the story of the scarf and a childhood trip with her mother to San Francisco.


Dreams of our new year. I can count my blessings at Thanksgiving, but I learn so much more about giving at Christmas. Between now and the new year, I’ll be considering the generosity of my family by birth and by choice. This season I’ve been put on notice that the world has the capacity to be beautiful, kind, and creative. I must respond likewise. I’ll have challenges, but I’ll have support. In this way, I (you are welcome on the journey) can continue to dream for a world in which every day we celebrate the best in each other (after you quit gagging, of course).

Christmas Giving

Now that we’ve gotten past the food and many of us have exorcised our inner shopping demons, I’d like to provide, as so many others have, alternative thoughts on gift giving at Christmas. My brother-in-law has requested a no spending policy between our families this season and I’m more than pleased to oblige. We did agree that no spending could mean finding our inner craftster, however, I’m unlikely to make this for his kiddos:


This Tampon Angel arrived in my Facebok in box from a most unlikely source. I’m not saying it’s my Senior Warden because if she had wanted folks to know about her inner subversive, surely she would have posted it on her own wall. Then again I told her I wanted to post it post-turkey and with her reply of, “I dare ya!” she cast herself as a provocateur. For this reason, I will allude to the identity of the sender rather than state outright it was the Senior Warden, who would also have you know about the Grace St. Paul Alternative Christmas Fair on December 13th. Last year they had Just Coffee, handmade items, and sales that benefited not-for-profit organizations.

Wise Bread also offers strategies to keep you in budget this year. If you are considering pulling out the plastic, consult this post from Pimp Your Finances. Man Vs. Debt challenges his giving policy — something most of us can afford to reexamine.

Christmas shouldn’t be a drag. I plan to get my kiddos that Shoot ‘Em Up Pet Shop Pokemon Heavy Metal Glitter Goo-gaw. I certainly learned from my own family that getting that one oh so materialistic as to be painfully obscene gift does bring joy to all involved. I also know that the Christmas we had relatively few presents, but ate a huge breakfast and watched black and white footage from my dad’s childhood was one of my favorite Christmases — though I liked the Barbie Dream House too.

The Magic Car Port Carpet

Early in the evening Handsome Hubster rolled out a carpet in the car port. How plush is that? The idea was that he’d get it ready for storage with a quick clean, then wrap it up for safekeeping. I had been in the backyard wondering if my grapefruit tree could be brought back to life. I have hope. Many new leaf clusters are busting out of otherwise lifeless branches. I credit Handsome Hubster’s deft work creating a berm at the tree’s drip line. Just past the tree I could see Handsome Hubster at work creating magic. Hadn’t he just set the stage for a terribly special occasion? I thought so. Of course, there was food.

Then this one

and this one

asked me to read. After four chapters, we were reduced to lollygagging.

I love special occasions. Don’t you?

Mother Earth Day

About mid-way between Earth Day and Mother’s Day, Caddo Artist sent me this:


Caddo Care Carton Contents:

Sandy Springs Buffalo Meat Jerky, Hinton, OK
Pepper Creek Farms Dip Mix, Lawton, OK
EEMB Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookie Mix & Peanut Butter Brownie, Lexington, OK
Lasley Roasted Peanuts, Eakly, OK
Scott Farms Tortilla Soup Mix & Reds, Rice, & Spice, Altus, OK
Sooners Salsa, Amigo’s Salsa, Ardmore, OK
Native Roots Market Bumper Sticker, Norman, OK

That there first item was done et straight’way. The brownie soon follered and the salsa wern’t long for this world. I’m not saying that Caddo is fattening me up for reunion slaughter; I am saying I haven’t exhibited much self-control.

Caddo included a card with the quotation, “There is nothing more honorable than motherhood.” I have plans in the coming days to disprove this, but for now, I am embracing the honorific. A separate note read, in part, “I wanted to send the apple pie, it was a party in your mouth with every bite!” The tease! I guess there is honor in motherhood, but cruelty in friendship.

Okay, while she did everything as I have written, the expanded contents of the note were personal, touching, inspiring, and directed straight my way. Perhaps there is nothing more honorable than motherhood, but for sure there’s nothing more humbling than reflective generosity. This mother of three who takes care of her family and friends so well is certainly most honorable.