Friday, May 9, 2014

Harry Potter

What is it about books that can calm a troubled heart? My five-year-old nephew moved in with us a few weeks ago. His parents are unable to care for him right now and so he is, with stubborn tenacity, settling into our family. I'm not going to lie, it's been rocky. And I know it's going to get harder before it gets easier. But I do have some help. I've been reading Harry Potter and The Sorcerer's Stone to him; a chapter each night. At first he was confused, where were the pictures? But then he couldn't wait to find out what happened next. What does the letter say? When is Hagrid going to ride a motorcycle again? What is a sorting hat? And how do Owls deliver letters?

And suddenly the nights breathed easier around here because this little boy who'd been bounced around his whole life, had suddenly discovered a whole new world, that somehow grounded him. And while he hasn't seen the similarities of his situation to Harry's yet, he seems to find solidarity in Harry's drive to fit in. And I know it's still hard to bring a troubled child into my life, but there's something very calming about re-drawing a lightning scar on his forehead every morning with a washable marker, so he can get off to school Harry Potter style.

And while Harry Potter is about wizards and magic and dragons and secret schools, it's also about being human. About fitting in, growing, discovering. So I'll keep reading and crossing my fingers and breathing in and out each day.

And I guess the writing can wait. Right? Cause, right now, Harry Potter seems more important.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Moonrise Kindom and writing/not writing.

I've spent a lot of the last few (maybe six) months taking large breaks from writing. I've had to jump in with some serious mothering and house-wifing. Plus there was summer and sunshine and water. How can a person write when there's sunshine and water?

But I think it's okay. To take breaks, I mean.

For example, I haven't written at all this week. Instead I've been working my fingers to death on the sewing machine.

Here's what I've made:
Fairy costume
Black Widow costume (from the Avengers)
Bilbo Baggins
A Newsie! (Broadway version, of course)
And a Spiderman costume for my sixteen-year-old which involves a spidey skirt and kick-ass tee

My back aches and my eyes hurt almost as much as a good day of writing. So, it sort of feels like I was writing. Does that count?

Do you take breaks? Or, more importantly, what are you going to be for Halloween.

Dustin and I are going as this:

And yes, I'm wearing blue eye-shadow and Sunday school shoes.

Friday, October 4, 2013


To be whole, let yourself break.
To be straight, let yourself bend.
To be full, let yourself be empty.
To be new, let yourself wear out.
To have everything, give everything up.
— Lao Tzu

Friday, May 3, 2013


This is what I'm doing right now. I wish it was actual surfing, but it's more like figurative surfing. I have decided not to fight the waves any more. I'm going to surf them. Cause, you know what, surfing's fun.

And maybe I should do some literal surfing as well. There's nothing like sand, saltwater and sun to cheer a girl's heart.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013


So my daughter, Alice (who is seven) thinks I have a job. I volunteer in the school library each week during her library hour. Here's the thing: every time she comes to the library, I'm there. So in her head, I must always be at the library.

So when we were having dinner with friends she said, "My mom has a job now."

"She does?" They seemed surprised I didn't tell them.

"Yeah, she works in the library." And then Alice runs off to play.

But the funny thing is, it is kind of like a job. It's the one time a week I have to be somewhere at a certain time. And I'm almost always late and my husband and the rest of my kids make fun of me that I can't be on time to my job, which--incidentally--is once a week at 10:00 am (volunteer, of course). So all week I gear up for that one hour. It's the one day that I worry about my wardrobe. Do I have the right shoes? Should I curl my hair? I know, pathetic.

This is not to say I'm not busy. I work really hard at home. But I guess at home, no one cares if your hair is curled or if your shoes work with the rest of your outfit. And I said to Dustin yesterday, "I like working in the library. I think I could do it as a job."

And he said, "Well, you could do anything for only an hour a week."

Sigh. "No, I mean a real job."

"Why would you want to do that? You'd have to curl your hair everyday."


Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Writing Again.

So amidst the revelry that is December and the depression that is January, I somehow found a new writing voice. It is nice to be writing again, to be creating something other than folded laundry and mopped floors.

February is looking to be a nicer month. Maybe a little warmer, a lot greener and lots and lots of sweet oranges from the tree.

So I write a thousand words a day with my new voice and keep going. One word, sentence, paragraph at a time. Eventually I'll have a whole book. Right?

How bout you? Are you writing or cleaning or working or just living. Tell me what you're working on.