Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Holy Random, Batman!

-This year, I'm oddly drawn to orange. Kind of a deep, burny orange. I might buy an orange cardigan. We'll see.
-Also, turquoise.
-But I always end up in black because I am afraid of color. Why wear color when you can wear black?
-My hair is not black, anymore. I don't know what happened, but it's brown, all of a sudden--very brown.
-But I have three bottles of hair dye waiting on the bathroom counter.
-Should I use them?
-Three minutes ago I looked out the window and noticed that the sky was blue. I got very excited and thought, "Maybe we can drive home with the top down today!"
-27 seconds ago I looked out the window and the sky is pouring buckets of rain.
-Today's weather is bi-polar.
-So is Lady Looney, but she takes meds.
-If this is her on meds, I'd hate to see her without.
-Today she got angry because the Gut Truck's chicken salad was made with grilled garlic chicken instead of the advertised crispy spicy chicken.
-She got very angry.

-But she ate the salad. And some ice cream.
-I had some ice cream, too. An ice cream sandwich, actually. It was delicious.
-Midterms are next week. I should maybe study.
-I've never been very good at studying. My friend, red-head Sarah used to help me.
-She would take notes and keep track of our assignments, because I suck at taking notes and I never could remember what homework I was supposed to do.
-And I would explain the concepts to make sure we both understood.
-We always got the same grades, down to the 1/100 point. But we never cheated.
-Sarah and I studied the detailed anatomy of the male and female reproductive organs together.
Red Canna, by Georgia O'Keefe
-But she mislabeled a particular part, so we got that bit wrong.
-It was a naughty bit.
-I studied Georgia O'Keefe in that class, and I recently decided that this would make a good tattoo.
-But I'm not sure where I would put it.
-It's a vagina.
-But I wouldn't put it there. Maybe a shoulder cap.
-Although I think I've gotten all the tattoos I want, and mostly ones I don't want after all.
-Sometimes I wish I could go back and shake my 18 year old self and tell her, "For goodness sake, don't get those dumb tattoos!"
-I would also tell her to not do the thing she decided to do when she was 23.
-But then, the today me would have fewer self-depricating jokes to tell.
-And sometimes nothing is funnier than laughing at yourself. You know...after the fact.

Morning Snack Makes Me Yack

The Cheeseburger sits with his chin in his hand, fleshy bulb balanced on pudgy paw. At least he's not eating.

Sunflower seeds are his favorite snack, and I wonder why he takes so much joy from putting far too much work into harvesting far too little. He dumps the seeds into his mouth by the pawful, tilting his head back to catch the cascade of shells on the slab that is his tongue.

I have no knowledge of the process by which the seeds are extracted from their casing, and frankly, I don't think my stomach could handle that knowledge. But once the task is done the empty shells are catapulted from his mouth and into a red plastic cup through a combination of tongue thrust, an expulstion of air, and a little lip wiggle.

I can't watch.

Over and over he repeats the process, ten or so seeds at a time. A pile of unmasticated seeds shrinks slowly before him, becoming only a scattering on its paper towel throne. Scoop, gape, dump, crunch, dribble dribble dribble. Scoop, gape, dump, crunch dribble dribble dribble.

I hide my face behind my computer monitor, bulging my cheeks in a pantomime of nausea. I'm afraid of what I might say if I let my disgust get the better of me. He really is a nice man...but he has no wife to tell him he's gross.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Looking At Yourself Closely Is Never Fun

A while ago I lambasted Lady Looney for denying the truths of things she doesn't understand. It frustrated me that she couldn't wrap her brain around both concrete facts and plausible theories that seem so simple and clear to me.

But today I think I know how she feels. Today I am infuriated by things that I simply can't process. I can't even imagine the world where these occurances would be okay. But apparently they are okay, and apparently I have to deal with that.

When did my method of thinking change?

And when did I start to view things so differently?

Friday, April 23, 2010

Sometimes It's Nice to Feel Special

I have a sort of love/hate relationship with my birthday. Leading up to April 22, I get intimidated by the thought of people doing special things for me, giving me good wishes and paying bits of attention to me. I dread my birthday, and I dread the attention. But then the actual day comes and I find myself randomly announcing, "it's my birthday!" to rooms full of people I barely know.

"It's my birthday!" but I'm going to feel awkward and shy if you actually acknowledge me. I confuse myself sometimes. Tiffany reminded me that other people enjoy giving gifts. They take pleasure in knowing they're giving me something thoughtful--bringing me joy, and I shouldn't take that pleasure away. Sigh...and of course, she's right. Thank you for thinking I'm special, and for caring about me. I mean that sincerely.

It really was a great day. Paul kicked off the accolades with a sleepy, "Happy Birthday, Baby," mumbled as I kissed him goodbye, and my co-workers kept the party going with strawberry cheesecake and some very nice gifts. We managed to hold off on the cheesecake massacre until 10:30 am--an excellent hour for cake!

Breaking my rule of never spending more than $15.00 for a purse, I am now the owner of a leather designer handbag, thanks to Gloria. I'm spoiled! Also, I'm in love with this little owl thingamajiggy. I have no clue what it is,  but it's freaking adorable. Apparently owls are my new thing.

After work, I came home to these!

As well as a birthday card that made me cry a little bit...Paul is a fantastic card picker-outer. His card said exactly what I feel about him, and it made my heart soar to hear my thoughts come from his mouth. I'm just a little in love, in case you couldn't tell.

Earlier this week, Paul mentioned that Mom A wanted us to stop by after work as she had a card and 'some stuff' for me, so around 5:30 we headed over to her house. When Hailey and Tayla popped through the front door, carrying a potted daisy between them, I realized that 'some stuff' included a surprise dinner with the people I love best! It was a little overwhelming because I was not expecting that.

This family is going to make a green thumb out of me yet!

In honor of my birthday, Chris roasted me thoroughly, and I did my best to make fun of him at every possible opportunity, too. I think he won, though, by singing 'Borske borske borske' instead of 'Happy Birthday.' I'm destined to a life of being the giant Swede--a small price to pay for admission to the family.

Paul and I headed home, stuffed with salad, pasta, wine, bread (and bread and bread) and cake, and it occured to me to check the mail. (I kind of suck at checking the mail regulary) My mom and dad sent me a card, too!

My new purse is now loaded with gift cards for shopping, dinner, a pedicure and coffee! Thank you so much, everyone, for your thoughtful gifts, and for making me feel special and welcome.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Twenty-Eight for Twenty-Eight

Well...it's my birthday. So, in honor of this auspicious occasion, Tiffany is going to interview me. For a big, fancy, birthday photo of me, go here.

Without further ado, here, in no particular order, are 28 things about Heather:

1) Where were you born? Coupeville, Washington.

2) Where is the farthest you've been from home? I was able to visit my sister twice while her (then) husband was stationed in Yokosuka, Japan. That's a ways away!

3) Describe a perfect rainy Sunday. Um...this is a PG-13 blog! Okay, I kid. It would involve a 9 a.m. wake up call, cheese blintzes with strawberries and sour cream (made by someone other than me), lots of coffee, quilts, movies, a very handsome man and his beautiful children, and maybe dinner and cards with family later in the evening (because I get horrible cabin fever).

4) If you could have any job, what would it be? Now, if I knew the answer to this one I would be a lot farther in my career than I already am! Honestly, I don't know what the perfect job is for me. I'd love to work in graphic design or something that allows me to create instead of just sitting around all day organizing things (I hate organizing). The ultimate job for me is just to be a mom. Right now I'm working part time in that field.

5) What is the very first thing you would buy if you won $10,000,000? Paul and I talk about this often--probably more often than is healthy. And we agree that, after clearing up all of our debt and establishing trust funds for the kids, etc. we would buy a home and some land. Next we would purchase butt implants for me. Now, we haven't agreed to that purchase, but I'm very good at getting my way.

6) What do you like best about yourself? Well...I think I'm pretty nice. I seem to get along with everyone, and as far as I know, I haven't made any enemies. I try (and think I've been pretty successful) to be considerate of others. There's really not a cruel, vindictive or manipulative bone in my body and I think that's a pretty good way to be.

7) What was your first car? It was a Pontiac and it was white. That's about all I know. Oh, and the last time I drove it I had to leave it on the side of I-5 in Everett and ride to a gas station in the back of a state patrol car. Turns out you should maybe check the oil every now and then...

8) What's your favorite smell? I can't pick one. There are a million delicious things to smell in this world, but, without being gross, I'd have to say it's Paul (as long as he's showered =D). But he hates it when I sniff him.

9) If you were a color, what color would you be? Probably black. Or cerulean, just because I really like saying that word.

10) Do you remember your home phone number from childhood? Yes! Because my parents still use the number I learned in kindergarten, and because I use their Albertsons card instead of getting my own. By the way, Mom, you have 0.20 off gas, but you need to have the actual card!

11) What's your most embarrassing moment? Whatever it is, I've blocked it out pretty well! I've had my share of embarrassments. In high school I was given the 'Tomato Face' award. I was voted in unanimously by my classmates. And of course, I was required to stand up in front of the whole school to, with flaming cheeks, accept my award.

12) Do you have a lucky number? I would say 17, but purely out of habit. I had a crush on a boy in the 4th grade, and his birthday was on the 17th, so I always used that as my lucky number. That habit has stuck around for a loooong time.

13) What was your favorite school subject? I guess I'd say English because I am very very good at it. But I did not enjoy school at all.

14) Did you have a least favorite subject? Three words: Old Testament Survey.

15) What was your favorite thing about high school? I went to an incredibly small school. By the time my senior year rolled around there were probably only 8 or 10 of us in 7-12 grade, but we were all friends. We all got along and hung out and for me, it was a good atmosphere.

16) What is the strangest thing about you? To be honest, I'm pretty freaking weird. I have a ton of annoying quirks and I'm sure Paul could talk for quite a while about them. Also, I have two extra bones in my jaw that prohibit me from sticking out my tongue as far as everyone else can. Go figure.

17) Who do you think is the most annoying celebrity? Oprah. Hands down.

18) Tell me about your first kiss? My first real kiss took place when I was 15. It was John Eloph, and we had just gone bowling and were hanging out at my boss' apartment. We were on the veranda when he mauled me, and I tactfully gave him his slobbers back by wiping my face on his shoulder.

19) And with Paul? Oh please--I don't kiss and tell! He'd kill me. But I will say that I asked for an encore.

20) Do you have a favorite song memory? I'd have to go with the song that is cited by almost every kid of my generation--Good Riddance by Green Day. It was high school in a nutshell.

21) What's your middle name?  Renee, with an aigu over the middle e. I lucked out in the middle name department...my sisters got Ann and Marie.

22) Do you have a favorite word to say? Alliteration. Irreperable. Walrus.

23) Who was your first best friend? Probably Rachel. Our families lived in the same apartment complex, and all my baby pictures have Rachel in them. But then, it's kind of hard to have a best friend as an infant. So I'll go with Christine. Our moms were best friends and were pregnant with us together. We're six weeks apart, and we hated each other for a good 18 years. Makes for an ideal friendship, right?

24) Do you believe in ghosts? Aliens? That man landed on the moon? No; yes; and I have serious doubts. Don't you think we'd go back? I mean, how many times do we climb Mount Everest? How often do we explore the Amazon? And yet, we've only 'seen' the moon once. I'm just not sure I buy it. And aliens. Isn't it a little conceited to think we're the only life form anywhere? I think it is. Although, I'm not saying I believe they've come to Earth. I just think they're out there.

25) Beatles or Elvis? The Beatles. Definitely. But I love Elvis, too. But the Beatles.

26) If you could invite anyone to dinner, who would it be? Shel Silverstein. How trippy would that be? I'd serve nothing but finger foods.

27) What is the #1 item on your Bucket List? To tour the British Isles, Italy, France, Germany, and any other place we can get to.

28) What is your favorite movie quote? 'It is clear that I must find my other half. But is it a he or a she? What does this person look like? Identical to me? Or somehow complimentary? Does my other half have what I don't? Did he get the looks? The luck? The love? Where we really seperated forceably or did he just run off with the good stuff? Or did I? Will this person embarrass me? What about sex? Is that how we put ourselves back together again? Or can two people actually become one again?' This is a quote from Hedwig and the Angry Inch. Now, I know some of you think this movie is ridiculous, but it changed my way of thinking about love and about myself. It was what I needed to hear at the time. The movie is adapted from a story, 'Origin of Love,' in Plato's Symposium, and I think it's a beautiful way to describe the humanity of love. I could just wax on and on about this, but I'll spare you. If you have time, watch Hedwig's Origin of Love video on YouTube, and you'll know exactly what I'm talking about.

I have high hopes for my 28th year. Wish me luck as I jump in!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Saying No! to HH

It's Holland Happening week, and for the first time in four years, that fact means nothing to me! I can't even tell you how excited I am to stay in Port Orchard this weekend while Oak Harbor gets turned on its head for three days.

This week, I will only work 40 hours instead of 100+. This week, the phone will not ring for me 60,000 times a day. I will not have to use my best eastern accent interpretation skills to decipher what the heck the vendors want from me. I will not have to yell. I will not have to pack trucks. I will not have to coddle the Dutchies. (I'm sorry if anyone is offended by that statement. But not that sorry.) I will not have to remember what happened to the sound system adaptor that I forgot three years in a row. I will not have to write a parade script. I will not have to babysit dignitaries who can't remember from one year to the next how to walk in a parade. I will not have to order porta potties. I will not have to argue with Paul Brewer. I will not have to dodge cranky vendors. I will not have to give press statements!

At the same time...I won't get to share a hot plate of powdered sugar-coated pofertjes. I won't get to grin indulgently at how cute and excited Jan and Helen look in their costumes. I won't get to smother my pride as I watch the Lindz play in the Community Band with the geriatrics. I won't get to gossip scandalously with Ron Apgar (am I really sorry about that? Wow.) in the shadow of his shop door. I won't get to drive the world's coolest golf carts through tourist-packed streets. I won't feel the pride of knowing that 15,000 people are going to have a great weekend because of me. I won't get to savor the moment of collapse (usually in front of a very alcoholic beverage) with my co-workers at the end of the long, sun-burnt day.

I'm not sorry the festival is out of my hands, and I'm not sorry I've decided not to go. Am I?

But you know, I can't completely escape the Dutchness...look what I found on my desk this morning.

**Update: I should qualify this post by saying that while I was not involved in planning this year, I was the lucky recipient of several panicked phone calls and e-mails asking where things were, who to call and what to do. Ah, it's kind of nice to feel needed...

Monday, April 19, 2010

My Lesson for the Weekend

When you give sweet, mild-mannered little children Starbucks (not coffee, goodness...do you think I'm a complete glutton for punishment?)

They may, in fact, turn into this:

And if you so choose to turn the children into the Tazmanian Devil, make sure you do it right before they hang out with Aunt Sara as she will gracefully bear the brunt of their energy.

Sidenote: Make an effort to time the sugar-high crash to coincide with a long drive home. Said crash will make the homeward drive very peaceful.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Random Dozen

1. Define a great relationship.

A great relationship takes lots of work from both parties. Trust and openness, honesty, integrity and friendship are qualities that a relationship must be built on. A great relationship occurs when each spouse constantly considers the other person before themself. It is selfless.

Wow, that sounds like an answer to a test question in an Interpersonal Communications course. Sorry for the rigidity, but I truly believe all of that, and I work to keep my relationship on that foundation.

2. Why is it called a drive-thru if you have to stop? (Real question: What was the last food/drink you purchased at a drive-thru?)

I have this awesome mental picture of a car zooming by a drive-thru window, the customer chucking loose change at the window and the employee throwing handsful of fries at the car. A paper cup of soda ricochets off of the windshield, leaving a sticky trail of syrup and ice cubes and ketchup splats against the car door.

But really, what was the last drive thru meal I had? Last week or the week before I grabbed an Egg McMuffin and orange juice at McDonald's for breakfast. I've been trying to avoid the whole drive thru thing...

3. What is your favorite breed of dog?

I'm not exactly a dog lover. I'm not a dog hater, either, but I've never had one, so I guess I don't see the hype. However, someday when we have some space, and when we're actually home enough to take care of a dog, I wouldn't mind getting one.

I'd love to rescue a greyhound, or to have a whippet, but my favorite has got to be the Rottweiler. I fricking love those things and their adorable smooshie faces. But, as Paul has vetoed every last one of those breeds (insert pouty-face here), I guess I wouldn't mind having the bulldog that he wants. Just as long as it isn't some nasty, yippy little chihuaua, or anything that ends in 'poo.' I prefer dogs that can't be carried in a purse.

Side note: Whatever happened to mutts? Why can't you just get a good mutt anymore?

4. If you had to move to a state besides the one you currently live in, where would you move?

I really love Washington. I mean, I love it. So I'd hate to move. That's one huge reason why I'm glad Paul is in the guard. But if we had to move, I guess I wouldn't mind going to Colorado, or maybe the east coast--like Maine or Rhode Island or something. I've never been to either of those places, so I just don't know.

5. If you could change anything about the way you were raised, what would it be?

I think my parents did a good job! I mean, I turned out great, right? Though I can't vouch for my sisters... I kid, I kid.

If I could change anything, I would probably have them send me to public school at least for high school. Sorry to beat a dead mule, Mom. I did okay :) (and I just tried to find a photo of our fan-freaking-tastic uniforms, but no one is brave/dumb enough to post one on facebook and mine are all at home)

6. Who is the funniest person you know?

I can't name one person, but nothing is funnier than Paul, Chris and Chubz when they're on a roll.

7. Did you get enough sleep last night?

Theoretically I did, but enough sleep is never enough for me. I live in the land of Nod.

8. What's the first thing you thought of this morning?

How the crap am I going to roll over and get out of bed? I'm stuck. Might as well hit snooze. Obviously I got out of bed eventually, but it huuuuuuurt.

9. Grilled or fried? --HONESTLY

Fried, duh. But I do love grilled veggies, too!

10. Are you afraid of the dark?

Not so much anymore. Well, not indoors anyways. I still get a little panicky when I'm outside in the dark. But at least I no longer have to do the running leap into bed so the creature beneath it doesn't grab my ankles!

11. When you were a kid, what did you want to be when you grew up?

A mom. That's about all.

12. If you had to choose one word to describe yourself, what would you choose?


Thursday, April 15, 2010

Things About Today That I Felt Should Be Shared (for no particular reason)

A few things about today...

-My boss nominated me for Employee of the Quarter. How cool is that? I didn't win, but that's okay (although I would have loved to take that parking spot from Mary ;-). I'm glad to know that he thinks I'm doing a good job. With so little supervision and so little feedback, it's hard to know where I stand.

-I had the most delicious rainy-day lunch ever. Grown-Up Grilled Cheese. Yup. Three cheeses melted with red onions between toasted slices of sourdough. Heaven nestled in a basket with french fries. Although, I really can't make that a habit...and my fingers smell like onions. For the most part, I don't like onions--I even asked them to leave them off, but in this case, I'm glad they messed up.
-My co-worker frustrates me to no end. She has the inability to believe anything that she cannot wholly understand. The problem is this: she understands very little. I guess it's easy for me to be snobby, but I feel like I spend my entire day talking to a 12 year old who isn't willing to see beyond the tip of her nose.
   Today, the topic was surprise pregnancies. You know...I Didn't Know I Was Pregnant a la TLC. She doesn't think it's possible. At all. Why? Because she's been pregnant twice, and she knew both times. And that's fine. I've never been pregnant, and I'm sure she knows what she's talking about. But just because she had a certain experience doesn't make it impossible for another woman to have an entirely different experience.
   It's the close-mindedness and the unwillingness to budge from her pre-conceived notions that makes me crazy. Also, the complete ignorance of those preconcieved notions. I'm contemplating a series of blog posts entitled, "Overheard In Outages."

-It's week 3 of the Spring Quarter, I've already skipped class twice, and I'm trying to talk myself out of skipping again tonight. I'm getting the work done, and it's not like anything happens in class, so why do I even need to go? I'm also contemplating a blog post entitled, "Twenty Things I Hate About OC." Because let me tell you, it's a crappy, crappy school. I'm embarrassed to go there. But a job is a job, I'd like to keep mine, and the only way to accomplish that is to finish out this certificate!

-It's Thursday, thank goodness, and that means 1) tomorrow is Friday (duh, and also yay!), 2) I get to go to work an hour later!!! and 3) I get to carpool with Tiffany! I've been missing her three days a week. Also, it's Latte Day, which makes my morning very happy.

I hope your Thursday was decent, and I hope you're not too bored with my rambles. I just felt like writing...

Thankful Thursday

I ripped this off of someone else's blog, but they noted that it was a forward, so that makes it public domain, right?

Maybe we were supposed to meet the wrong people before meeting the right one so that when we finally met the right person, we would know how to be grateful for that gift.

I've met my fair share of wrong people, and it's tempting to wish them out of my life, my history. But without those people, I wouldn't be who I am today and I wouldn't be where I am today.

So, thank you, jerky, controlling, over-emotional, manipulative, inconsiderate, condescending, daddy-issue-ridden, neglectful, over-attached, under-attached, drunken, mean, selfish and ignorant ex-boyfriends, etc. Thank you for giving me Paul!

Love this man...

Wednesday, April 14, 2010


Ok, so maybe I was a bit cranky yesterday. Maybe I was acting like a whiney little baby and didn't like what anyone had to say. While I admit that I was being irrational, I hold fast to the notion that I have a right to feel however I want to feel at any given moment. No, I don't have the right to take it out on people (and I don't think I did), but dangit! a girl can PMS if she wants to!

The good news is, I'm a happy camper again today. More or less.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Lunch In the Middle

I am the luckiest ferry passenger ever. Ok, so I've missed a ferry or two in my ferry-riding career, but for the most part I've had the great fortune of sliding up to the ticket booth 45 seconds before the ferry leaves and cramming my car on the tail end of the boat just in time for a crew member to slip a little red wedge under my rear tire.

I cut it close on Saturday, arriving at the Kingston dock about 8 minutes before the ferry was scheduled to leave. The ticket seller even made me wait at the booth until he knew if there was room for me or not. But remember? I'm lucky! There just happened to be room for a few more cars on the 10:05am sailing.

Photo stolen from Internet for dramatic effect.
Does not represent my personal experience.

Usually, missing the ferry would not be the end of the world. Sure, the 50 minute wait is annoying, but what are you going to do? But this weekend was different. I had to make that sailing. Why, you may ask?

Because my MOM was waiting for me in Mukilteo!

She's the cute one on the right.

Instead of making a three day pilgrimage up to Whidbey Island, I talked my mom into meeting me halfway for lunch and shopping. It was so nice to hang out and do something a little different than just sitting at home. The plan was to just go to the Everett Mall, get lunch and shop a bit, but a wrong turn took us to Alderwood, darnit! Since we were almost there anyways, we figured we should probably go to the big mall.

But first we had a delicious lunch at Red Robin.

We each had the Whiskey River BBQ Chicken Wrap.
Why try something new when we know what we love?

Followed by a trip to Coldstone...Mom had never been!

Happiness comes in a waffle bowl!

We stopped by the Apple Store and found a ridiculously simple solution to my ginormous iPhone problem.

It works now!

We shopped. And shopped. And shopped. I rediscovered my bargain-hunting skills and purchased seven pairs of pants and around 12 shirts for Chloe and Nicholas, all for a whopping $120. Now that takes skill!
I may also have found a shirt for myself...and maybe a blazer. Sssh.

New sunglasses may have been involved, too...

Best of all, we just hung out and caught up. This Mukilteo thing is the perfect solution for the distance between my family and me. We're all too lazy to make a 3 1/2 hour trip, but an hour and a half? No biggie!

So if you're in Oak Harbor, and you don't mind jumping on the Clinton ferry, let me know and I'll come pick you up. We can go shopping!

Friday, April 9, 2010

Whaddaya Think?

I'm thinking of changing my hair color. What do you think?

Punk Rock Blue?

Platinum Blonde?


Pepto Pink?

Fire Bomb Red?

Ok, I'm not so good at the fotoflex thing yet, but seriously. I'm thinking about changing my hair color.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Koo Koo Kachoo

In the spirit of being thankful...

There are a great many things I'm thankful that I am. And there are a great many things I am thankful I am not. But I am especially thankful that I am not this:

Thankful Thursday

**Also, I learned how to use fotoflexer! Don't expect any more raw photos...I'm addicted!

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Night Swimming

Sarah and I used to go swimming late at night in the Coachman Inn pool. I'd close the pool at 10:00 pm, sending vacationing families, bored businessmen and travelling sailors back to their rooms, forcing them to wrap up in insufficiently-sized white hotel towels and dash, steaming, through the cold island-night air. I was the pool Nazi, lending no leniency to those who sought to delay the frigid run to their rooms.

At 11:00 pm I'd hand my responsibilities over to Sue, the night auditor. Sue wore with pride a ratty, crooked grey wig to cover the beautiful, pearly-white curls that haloed softly around her head. I asked her about it once, with all the niavety of a 19-year-old who spent far too much time in hair care. "It's much easier to throw on a wig than to set my hair," she croaked. Her voice wobbled, high-pitched and frail with age. It was my greatest fear that I would come in some morning for my 7:00 am shift to find Sue folded peacefully on the back room couch, stiff and cold in death, slipped away in the night.

We brought nothing but our bathing suits, oversized towels and a snorkel mask. We made our own dash, half-clothed, from the car to the softly glowing heat of the pool. We slipped through the water silently--any sudden noises might inflict the geriatric wrath of Sue. "People are trying to sleep, you know!"

Sarah and I would take turns with the snorkel mask, lifting our bodies as high out of the water as we could, and swan diving backwards, head first, face out. A good kick off allowed us to crumple on the floor of the deep end, and the challenge lie in reaching this spot with only the propulsion of the initial kick, plunging as deeply as possible with no help from our limbs.

And then we would float. Drifting towards the surface as slowly as possible, body limp and flat, face lifted, hair pooling around our faces like a swirling sea of blond kelp. This was my quiet place. With breath burning in my chest I took time to look, to feel. I lost myself in a world muted by water. Through the snorkel mask I gazed at the distorted night sky. It pooled and swelled above me, stars relocated by the current of the waters, a gentle swirl as Sarah tread water nearby.

The pool held an eerie quality late at night. Underwater silence found its twin in the night air stillness and steam drifted softly across the surface, backlit by the pool lights. It cradled me like an infant in the womb, and in my comfort I dreaded my birth.

Wordless Wednesday

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Monday, April 5, 2010

Easter To the Fourth Power

I never realized Easter was a family get-together kind of holiday until this year. The weekend kicked off on Friday night with pizza at Bumpa and Kathy's, and egg-dying at Uncle Chuck's (because he has two tables!)

Cousins Nicholas, Chloe, Hailey and Tayla--ready to dye eggs




Cody got into it, too


The dying bonanza continued on Saturday afternoon at Grandma Max's house!

Most of Nicholas' eggs featured 'scary' bugs and monsters colored with crayons before they were dyed lovely shades of pastel green, blue and orange

Chloe dug the sticker and tattoo decorations

Grandma Max was in her element!

Beautiful, bright eggs

Beautiful, bright cousins!

Max and Bill hosted an Easter Egg Extravaganza and Easter lunch for all of us early Sunday afternoon.

Lauren made it back from Forks just in time to join in

Daddy, Lauren and Uncle Bear are eggsellent prize hiders
(I know...sorry...)

Next stop was Bumpa and Kathy's house for more dinner, dessert and another egg hunt (this time in the rain).

Hailey and Nicholas braved the rain to find out what the Easter Bunny left for them

Eli got in on the fun, too

Collecting eggs too fast for the shutter!

Uncle Chubz had to 'supervise.'

We're all full of devilled eggs, ham, candy and cake, and it's time to rest up for next Easter! Hope yours was full of fun and family, too!

Thanks to Tiffany, our family photographer. Without her, you'd never know we did anything!