Caloden


The Name Game
October 30, 2005, 6:53 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

I sometimes wonder what the true difference is between an island and an iceberg. I have been accused a time or two of being the latter. Icebergs give me the willies. Just part of them perched above those frigid waters, and huge parts of them going down, down, down into dark lonliness. Penguins can live on icebergs, but if they jump into the water a seal or a whale will swallow them. And they randomly float about with the currents, never knowing where they are going. Uck.

Now an island seems far more inviting. I get a mental picture of warmth and gentle,clear blue waters and big momma seaturtles laying their eggs in the sands. Islands have pretty tropical birds and fragrant flowers. Hugh Grant famously said that islands may appear to be lonely but that beneath they are connected by bits of land masses, making them rather social.

I think the island gig is a far better concept.

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True Love
October 29, 2005, 9:56 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

Today was not really a good day, it was a bad day. An awful day. It was a Bush getting re-elected for a third term day, a planetary misalignment day. So tonight, in an effort to soothe the pain, the older kids and I headed to Wal Mart in search of vampire teeth and fake nails for Cassidy’s Halloween costume. After that we trooped to the video store for some cheap entertainment. I sensed that there was no agreement amongst us and suggested we return tomorrow when we were fresh and could make a decent movie decision. Just then, Loren piped up from one of the aisles, “I got it Mom! I found just the right one.” He came out of the aisle with About a Boy, featuring none other than Hugh Grant. Cass ran over, smiled, and in agreement -not always an easy effort on her part- said,”Great! Let’s get that one.” Gotta love them. (I think they have had to sit through that movie at least 30 times.) On the way to car I overheard Loren tell Cassidy, “Now we can have a Hugh Grant Film Festival for Mom.”

Love’em to pieces and pieces.



Who Wears Short Shorts
October 27, 2005, 10:44 am
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I have noticed lately that Cassidy has taken to wearing long sleeved shirts. The mornings are cool, but the afternoons are still a comfy Indian summer, so I inquired as to the reason. She told me a little boy at her school said to her, “Geeze, your arms sure are hairy. Why are they like that?’ Ouch. I know this is an issue that has bothered Cass for several years. She can’t help it, really. Her father and I are rather fuzzy and we have produced three furry offspring. To add insult to injury this was a boy whom she used to fancy, they played baseball together over the summer and she thought him special. Well, no longer. He is on her list. And to be on Cassidy’s shit list is not a good place to be. She has a fabulous memory, she is creative in her cunning and she is merciless. This poor fool doesn’t know what he has unleashed. She will remember him until she is grown.

I completely understand Cassidy’s plight. Growing up I, too, suffered from the arm hair issue. I pleaded with my mother to help me rid my appendages of the eyesore, but she countered that if I did then the hair would grow back in odd patterns. So I learned to cope. Cassidy is far more relentless in her demands and so, on ocassion, I will help her Nair her lower leg regions. I do this because at the tender age of eight I used to steal my mother’s razor and shave my legs. As a result, my ankles have some vicious scars. I don’t want Cass to have lumpy ankles, so I figure the Nair is a decent solution. It still doesn’t solve the arm hair dilemna, but it is a start.

Cassidy will grow up to be a true stunner. Whether she chooses to go au natural or opt for a weekly wax, beauty and wit will be hers for the taking. Regardless, that silly boy will still be on her list.



24/7 Devon
October 26, 2005, 12:59 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized


This morning while changing Devon’s diaper I had an epiphany. Much to my exasperation, he was wiggling and flopping about as I was trying to affix his diaper tabs. It ocurred to me that I desperately needed to get away from him because he was driving me nuts and I wanted to scream. If only I could park him somewhere, I thought, put him on a shelf or safely perch him someplace for just a few minutes while I collected myself. And that’s when it hit me, if he had a velcro patch, say about 6″ by 6″, sewn into his back or front side then I could just stick him to the wall. And the more I thought about it, the better it sounded. The velcro would need to be fairly sturdy, we’re talking 25 to 30 pounds of squirming toddler to support. Then there would be several docking stations, consisting of the other velcro half, for the parents to install around the home. These would be affixed fairly low to the walls so that the child’s feet would not touch the floor, but not so high that it would frighten him or her.

I can see how there might be issues with scarring once the patches were removed, but with cosmetic surgery being what it is I think this could be easily remedied. And this is obviously not for every family. In fact some parents might outright object to the idea, but that is why it would be purely optional, sort of like circumcisions.

The more I think about, the more smitten I become with the concept. There is something in it for everyone: mom or dad get a break, the baby gets to view the room from a new perspective, the surgeons make a few bucks. I think it’s a winner.



Sick day
October 25, 2005, 7:28 pm
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Unconditional love: wiping that huge wad of green goo from a small nose and holding the glob captive upon my finger while he slumbers upon my chest.



Cut the Cord, Already
October 24, 2005, 9:29 am
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“You keep that baby and it’s your one way ticket into poverty.” So said my father nearly 13 years ago upon discovering that I was unwed, ungraduated and pregnant.

“Are you going to marry him?”, he demanded.

“Um. No. Not right now. I don’t really know.”, I mumbled.

“Are you going to finish your degree?”

“Um. No. Not right now. I don’t feel well most days.”

“Have you seen a doctor yet?”

“Um. No. Not yet.”

“Well, my parents had this problem with your Aunt Mary (his older sister). They sent her off to a convent, she had the baby, came home and returned to school. We can send you out to California and you can stay with your Uncle Joe (his brother). You can have the baby out there, come back and get back to normal. What do you think about that?”

To this I said, “Um. I don’t know. It’s alot to think about.” But in my head I had an entirely different strain of thought, something like this,”Well, you arrogant prick, I’m scared as hell. You raised me to believe that this sort of situation is the biggest error of ALL the errors. I am pregnant, confused and I feel like shit. I need a hug and somebody to tell me that I am okay, that I am not a bad person, that I am loved.”

Before we could get up from the table my father asked my mother for her thoughts on the matter and she tossed in this, “Well, what I see here is a serious lack of conviction on her part.”

**********************************************************************************************************************

I no longer wear this scene on my shirt sleeve on a daily basis, though it definitely smarted for quite awhile. For a very long time I think I let this be a self-fulfilling sort of prophecy. Now I use it to fuel me along on the more difficult days. My parents are what they are and I try to love them that way. I don’t want to carry their baggage or judements anymore. I am trying to liberate myself of that one way journey; not to show my parents, but more to show the children what can truly be accomplished through hard work and following dreams and hope.



New Leaves
October 22, 2005, 8:08 pm
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I am all in favor of envisioning a better life, not that mine is a bad one, but sometimes a little dreaming is therapeutic. Picturing myself doing the things that are most fulfilling and meaningful often boosts my spirits. But today when I was out for a walk -by myself- I realized that I have been using this sort of fantasizing as a crutch. I was by myself for nearly an hour, the afternoon sun was falling over the mountains, the leaves mostly gone from the trees and I found myself picturing what I most wanted to do and be. After about 30 uninterrupted minutes of this I began to wonder if this was actually a healthy way to pursue my time. Why wasn’t I actually doing these things instead of just wishing for them – I questioned. (I suppose in my usual musings I am with the children and have not had the silence to get to this part of the process.)

So after chewing on this for awhile I made a mental list of the things I truly do want. Now it is one thing to make a list and entirely another to commit to it. I have made a zillion lists in my time and have successfully hidden most of them in the couch cushions. I decided to turn over a new leaf, summon up my courage and pursue some (i.e. my) meaningful endeavors. This is something akin to a New Year’s revolution, but I am not in competition with all those other newly reformed slackers. This is just me, on my own path, doing my own walk. There is no time like the present, sieze the day, act now…whatever the case, I just might be on to something here.