Mea culpa, mea culpa, mea maxima culpa.
Wow, it's been so long since I wrote -- three weeks!! -- that "blogger.com" doesn't even pop up in my navigation bar when I start typing. That, my friends, is what you call "sloth."
Except I haven't been slothing! I swear! I got sick right before Ed's birthday and I feel like it's been an uphill battle since then. Add in Joel going on two separate trips, plus 2 more b-day parties for Eddie, plus 2 wedding showers for Julie, and I feel like I've been running on fumes for all of March. Which is a shame, because it's been a particularly lovely March, weather-wise: sometimes chilly but often quite fantastic. I've been able to snuggle Eddie into several wonderful afternoon naps, even though he hasn't napped regularly for at least 6 months. And I've been remarkably un-busy in the dance-teaching department. This was by choice, for Lucy's first year in school. It's been a successful experiment on some level -- there have been Zero afternoons of flying around like crazy chickens, trying to arrange childcare and choreography at the last moment -- but we have been missing the money, and I'm also missing the work. I'm looking forward to diving back in ... maybe in a couple years. I would love to be able to honor Ed's first year in school (this fall! Already!) in the same way, but 1. I don't see myself sitting idle every afternoon, and 2. I'm just getting a little... itchy. A few stay-home moms I know are taking a "Year Of Mom" for their youngest child's first year in full day Kindergarten (which is all that's offered here in St. Paul, and which would be the 2011-12 school year for me). Basically, trying not to overcommit during that first year when I'd have an Entire 7-Hour Stretch All To Myself Every Weekday. I kind of can't even imagine the freedom.
I've been meeting with a Life Coach lately -- she's a doll and is supposed to help me figure out what I really want to be when I grow up. So far we've figured out that I love change/variety, deadline/project-oriented work, and teaching/service/helping others. Fortunately, that lines up well with itinerant dance-teaching. Another thing that popped up is becoming a doula -- an assistant to an expectant mother during labor. I'm doing some research, and I'm blessed with some wonderful doula friends who are happy to share their knowledge and experiences. Joel and I rented "Up in the Air" last night -- loved it!! The movie makes the point, along its way, that life is too short not to do what you love. I've heard the phrase "Do what you love, and the money will follow" -- it kinda sounds way too good to be true, but part of the faith journey I've been going on in my Bible study this year has also led me to the same conclusion. What if the reason a super-steady, stable, boring office job feels so wrong to me is that it's not what I'm meant to be doing? What if there really is a bigger plan -- some work I'm meant to do that can make a difference? Well I dunno. I'm working on it.
Kids have been SUPER cute lately. I drove Eddie into the Subway parking lot to check out prices on their loooong party subs (astronomical, btw), and Ed took one look at the storefront and said, "Mama, is this Five Dollar Foot Longs?" and then when I got back in the car he muttered "Subway. Eat fresh!" Take heed, marketing people -- whoever's doing Subway's ads is a GENIUS.
Lucy asked me the other day if she could make something "All by myself, with no recipe." Here's what I do know was in it: cheddar cheese, mustard, mayo, fennel, cinnamon (lots of cinnamon), salt, chicken bouillon, green food coloring, and an egg. She did microwave it long enough to cook the egg, but HOLY HECK was it uneatable. She tasted some, offered me some (I did try it), and then insisted we save the rest so Daddy could join in the feast when he got home.
Last night we convinced Ed and Lucy to TRY ONE BITE of the spinach/walnut/craisin/bleu cheese salad I made. We told them it was just like in Ratatouille, when the rat eats a bite of cheese along with a strawberry, and the flavors mix together and make something wonderful. They both ate more than one bite (wahoo!!) and Eddie said "I think I'm getting a flavor.... Hmmm. It makes my shoulders go up, and I shiver." Score one for bleu cheese.
And: you know your kid is reading too many books about sea animals when you're eating shrimp for supper and your son asks you to "Pass the krill." Also the other day Ed hugged me and said "Think big, Mama, and you can do great things!" And also, Lucy has been using "whom" correctly. As I said in my Facebook post documenting some of these, I'm pretty sure God has given me exactly the right kids.
And, sorry, one more random reflection: I know I've said this before, but as I suck down the final dregs of a Cherry Coke (and oh, how delicious it was!), I'm reminded how healthy eating begets healthy eating, and unhealthy-vice-versa. I had a couple handfuls of Cheez-its this afternoon and I immediately craved a Coke. How terrible is that!? If I could've left the Cheez-its alone, I would have been soooo happy with water and some avocado slices... but noooo, I had to go and Cheez it up. Grrrr! Anyway, if anybody's having trouble making healthy food choices this early spring (with Easter candy rearing its ugly head, and farm-fresh produce still a few months out), Take Heart! Be Strong! You aren't alone.
And, OK, listen, I'm really sorry, but here are some Facebook statuses I've been posting which I now would like to document in some format I am hoping I'll actually be able to print out someday. You know, for posterity. Anyway:
1. My dance teacher told me I have "great feet for yoga." By which I'm pretty sure she means "chimpanzee feet."
Yeah, see, some of these things are better with the comments that get added. For example, my friend Sherry (a yoga teacher) explained that "your toes have some separation, and they support your feet on 'all four corners,' as we yogis say."
2. Things I'd Never Imagine Would Come Out of My Mouth #416: "Lucy doesn't mean "a boyfriend," she means "a boy toy."
OK, now this one, people laughed but nobody asked for an explanation! And so I give it here, where you are captive. So, you know how little kids anthropomorphize their toys and call them their "friends"? I assure you, they do. Lucy was talking about how Eddie has boy "friends," while she prefers girl "friends." Lucy then added "Someday, when I have a boy friend..." and Joel shot her A LOOK from across the room, and I jumped in, trying to clarify, by saying "She doesn't mean 'a boy friend,' she means 'a boy toy.'" Which, as you can see, actually sounds much worse.
All right, I'm outta here.