July 22, 2016

Early Morning Ramblings


I woke up early this morning, a promise to spend time with my guy before he drove to Chicago for the day. The text on my phone, sent from downstairs, said: Chai, darling? Of course, yes. Usually he leaves for work at 4:30am so a cup together at 6am? A rare treat. Now he is on his way north and here I sit in this dimly lit house with only my thoughts and this cat in my lap for company.  I wonder as I pet him, which of us derives more comfort from it. Slowness. There is something almost spiritual about slow, quiet mornings. And this morning a need to capture the feeling with only my phone so as not to disturb the moment.


The stillness allows me to hear my thoughts much more clearly than I might the rest of the day. I am thankful for this. It gives me time to think about what I want this day to look like. I try to balance out the needs and the wants. I need to go to yoga, I need to do some painting, I need to clean the floors. I want to sit in a cozy corner and read, I want to play with my camera, I want to sit in a bookstore. I want to work on a project in the studio. A luxury to have choices.


Somehow the needs always win out. I'm looking to change that. I know it is only up to me. He tells me all the time that I need to take time to do the things I enjoy even as I wage this life long war against guilt. I know that it is imperative that in the end I win. Must learn to practice saying yes to myself as I would say yes to everyone else. This shouldn't be so hard.


I'm feeling nostalgic this morning. We celebrated our big girl last night, our dear, delightful Maddie. I'm just stunned that she is 23, a year older than I was when I had her. She has grown up so much and I think especially in the last 6 months. I am so very proud of her. She was responsible for my first stretch marks, gray hair and sleepless nights and also responsible for teaching me about unconditional love, true joy and pride. She is vibrant, hilarious, outgoing, dramatic, loyal and beautiful. Inside and out. I'm enjoying watching her settle into adulthood and her work with autistic children. She has come into her own. My wish is that she could see herself the way I see her. In fact we would probably all be better off if we could see ourselves through the lens of those that love us.


It is getting light out but I am not ready to give this quiet moment up quite yet, so I will close this laptop, open my book, and settle in until the kitty leaves, giving me permission to get up and get on with my day. I so hope he doesn't leave for awhile.


July 19, 2016

This, That and the Other Thing


Summer. It seems to be going by in a flash. While it's my least favorite season (each season has something to love), I am not ready to pack lunches and set the alarm clock every day. Of course there is a part of me that craves a schedule and not melting when I walk out the door but I'm still hoping to slow this pace down for the time we have left. I don't know how much time that is exactly, because I refuse to look at the calendar and count the days.


This past week Emma had ballet camp and last Friday she performed at an assisted living home with her class. We met the sweetest ladies and in particular, a lovely lady named Betty. Here's what I know for sure, when I get old I want to be a Betty. The next day we went to a different home that we've started visiting so Em could read to the residents of the memory care wing. Harry Potter of course, because what else would you read?


I find that I've been in the mood to cook and bake a lot lately which is honestly kind of strange for me during summer, in my not-especially-insulated old house kitchen.


I made these Chai Spiced Sugar Cookies last Saturday and they were gone by last night. Perfect with a cup of tea or coffee. I made mine bigger than the recipe called for because we like a substantial sized cookie in this house. A treat ought to feel like a treat. Also, that way when I take half a cookie I'm getting more bang for my buck. Also, more calorie.


Things have slowed down this week, for which I am thankful. I woke up Monday morning with a back flare up which sort of forces the slow down but I've learned to listen to my body. We wrapped up Emma's 3 1/2 month bathroom renovation this past week and are just working on the finishing touches now. She has officially moved out of our bathroom and I am more than a little thrilled to not be sharing one little sink with two other people. No one is happier than Em is though. I bet she has said she loves her new bathroom at least 10 times in the last day! I can't wait to share the project with you. I'm more than a little jealous of her new space and might have to sneak in there and pretend it's mine when she goes back to school!


This summer has been very good to us and now that we don't have the big project hanging over us, I hope we can really just relax and enjoy the rest of it. In two days we celebrate our big girl turning 23! 23! In the blink of an eye people. Enjoy every moment young mommas. Well except the ones that include cleaning up gross stuff.  You don't have to enjoy those.