Thursday, April 29, 2010

The Big Orange Splot

My daughters are magical, if I do say so myself. They have reacted to the move in a variety of ways - sad to leave the old house, delighted with the Vacation House (particularly the TV in their bedroom - a treasure not to be repeated, but perfect for this strange phase of our lives.) They are both ecstatic to have their own bedrooms for the first time, even though they don’t quite know yet how very much they’re going to miss each other - I predicts many “sleepovers” in each other’s rooms.

To give a clue of their ideas and perceptions of their own rooms, I have compiled below two running monologues, mostly delivered to me from the back seat of the car over the past weeks.

Amelia: "Well, Mommy, I have decided on blue. Gram is right - it really does need to be a peaceful and relaxing color, and Gram is very good at decorating. We’ve decided on Serenity Blue. I am mostly excited about my new quilt, and having my bookshelves. I want to put a shelf above my bed where I can put all of my treasures and medals and things, and where Abby can’t steal stuff. (Insert: Abby’s “HEEEEEEYYYY!” followed by a “No offence, but you did steal my gum and eat half of the package.” Abby: “When?” Amelia: “Last year.”) Mom, I have been thinking about how to arrange my stuffed animals. I have been considering grouping them by their place in the animal kingdom, but may also alphabetize them by their first name…Wait, that won’t work, because then Hermione the lion and Hermes the dog will have to be next to each other, and that isn’t a good idea. I may have to try out a few solutions before I find the right one. I’m going to line up my books according to which ones I like best, but I understand that the Harry Potter books have to go in the Athenaeum. (The Athenaeum is the name they’ve given to my office/guestroom/girls’ computer room, named for Athena, who is the goddess of wisdom, (for the books) and arts and crafts (for the scrapbooking stuff.) What I really think I need, though, is an easy chair with a lamp above it, where I can sit and read for hours and hours. Every kid needs her own easy chair."

Yes, Amelia. Yes, of course they do.

Abby: "Pink!! I’m between Rosebud, Celebration, and Rose Glory. Which one do you think is most Aphrodite-like? Because I’m definitely sticking with the Aphrodite theme, because of love and beauty. I want to paint shells on the wall for Aphrodite, too. Can I paint shells? How do you paint shells? (To which I answered that we could get decals, which she informed me simply wouldn’t do. She wants to do it herself. “Find me a drawing of shells you like online, and I’ll make an overhead and we’ll use the projector from school to project them onto the walls, ” I suggested. She agreed.) I want one big piece of the wall, big as me, to stay white, so I can paint new things on it all the time, and then paint over it when I get tired of it. Can we do that? Can I put a frame on it? Can I have a full length mirror? I will need to paint Julie and Addie’s bunk bed pink, too, to match the one for Kit and Ivy. (These are the American Girl/ My Twinn dolls that are her life’s greatest treasure. Kit is officially Amelia’s, but Abby lets her sleep in her room.) I’m going to put their closet in my closet and… Look! A bunny! Can I have my dollhouse in my room? And I never have to put it in the attic again? And can I put my collection of glass pigs on their own shelf? All alone? Can I put them on the windowsill? Can I put paint a shelf to hang on my wall? I need a lava lamp!!”

Yes, Abby. You certainly do. A lava lamp. Go figure.

We paint their walls tomorrow night, after the signing. When we pick them up from school, we’re going to make a ceremony out of coming “home” for the first time. We are each choosing one thing that is sacred to us individually to be the first item we bring into the house. For Amelia, it’s Snowball (her special stuffed dog) and her Percy Jackson book. For Abby, it’s Cow-Cow (her…well, cow) and the giant poster collage of Aphrodite images she’s collected from the internet. For Patrick, it’s a replica of the Minuteman statue he bought at the Old North Bridge, a symbol of the new book he’s writing. For me…it’ll be the last thing I brought out of my old house, my It’s a Wonderful Life wooden sign that has hung in my living room for the past 6 years. That movie, that whole concept, is a symbol to me of so many things - my gratitude for the life I’m so blessed to live, my wonderful family, and recognition always of the lesson of each person’s life touching so many others.

Then we’re going to read a story to our house. (Which Patrick thinks is maybe taking it a bit to far, but he’ll go along with it.) It’s called The Big Orange Splot. Do you know it?

It’s about a man named Mr. Plumbean who paints his house bright and vivid colors, and fills it with images of elephants and balloons and lions and pretty girls and steam shovels. Alll of his neighbors think he’s crazy, but when he explains, “I am my house and my house is me…it looks like all my dreams,” his neighbors become inspired, and begin painting their houses to look like their dreams, too, and everyone’s homes become outward symbols of their own creativity and imagination, and an acceptance of that in each other. That is what I want for our home - for all of us to grow together in our separate creativity and individuality, and also to grow collectively as a family unit, and to create a place that is welcoming and warm and embracing for the people we love most in the world to visit.

And then we will do an initial sage smudging, roll up our sleeves, and get to work.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Staring at the Ceiling

It's three in the morning and I'm too excited to sleep.

I blame Mom and Auntie for this, as well as for anything I might be compelled to buy from any infomercials between now and 6:00 a.m.

Just like them, I am wired for joy. When I am excited about something, it thrums through my veins, making my limbs restless and keeping my eyes staring open at the ceiling. Christmas, a vacation, anticipation of joy - my own, or someone else's joy that I might be able to witness or share in.

I tried Advil p.m. A glass of wine might work, but we're all out, and the only thing left in the liquor cabinet is a bottle of peach schnapps. I can't quite manage that. So I'm watching re-runs of Cheers, and watching thoughts about my house pass through my brain in tandem...

The girls will have such fun setting up their dolls and stuffed animals on their shelves...Why do the books say that you are supposed to paint a giant "W" on the wall and then fill it in for proper wall painting technique?...I really should have bought that clearance rug at Jordan's furniture when I had the chance...If I paint my bedroom the shade I've chosen called "Blue Bayou," will I inadvertently get a Linda Rondstadt song stuck in my head in a continuous loop for the next decade or so?...What DOES one keep in a garage, really, and just how likely is it that I won't ever accidentally smash my Corolla into the door? I've never had a garage before...I have no good place to display my teapots - will it be too corny to use them as bookends?...Do NOT cry at the closing, do NOT cry at the closing...I should really take it upon myself to learn something about plumbing.

And mixed in there are also thoughts about what it was like to have tea with Elizabeth Berg, how inspiring she is and how she really does look like Diane Keaton. I'm thinking about my middle school play, and trying not to worry about things that will iron themselves out, as they always do. I'm wishing that I hadn't remembered the pint of bananas foster Haggen Daaz ice cream in the freezer. I'm wondering how I'll manage to get a sizable dent in the painting this weekend, and how to manage the picking up of the girls during prouction week next week.

It's too much, and after a day in sixth grade later, I will crash at 8:00 p.m., only to awake at 2:00 and start all over again. And I'll find re-runs of Cheers and Becker - why must the wee small hours of the morning feature so much Ted Freaking Danson? And I'll make lists and try to find some box that needs packing or re-packing, and count the hours until Friday morning's closing, where I will, of course, cry.

Tears of joy, just like Mom and Auntie always do, hearing songs about Home played on a player piano in the background of my mind as I sign sign sign, and finally bring my family home, where the bedrooms will be pink, yellow, blue, and Blue Bayou...where the folks are fine and the world is mine, on Blue Bayou....

La la la...something about fishing boats...and a familiar sunrise through sleepy eyes...

Friday, April 23, 2010

Seeing the Sunrise

My cat yells me awake just before 6 every morning. I don't really mind it during the week because my alarm goes off shortly after 6 anyhow, so I just get up, feed her, make the coffee, and sometimes sit and watch a little of channel 5 morning news before I get into the shower.

My cat, however, has no concept of vacations and/or weekends. Sometimes Patrick will get up and lock her in the downstairs bathroom so we both can sleep, but once I'm up, I'm up.

The pond is pretty in the early morning, though, and I like to be awake, alone, while my family is still snoozing and cozy. I have also inheirited from Mom and Auntie a bizarre Holiday Insomnia Disorder, where we can't sleep if we get ourselves too excited about something. I'm too excited to be in my house later this morning, counting window shades, looking at paint chips in the light, and doing a little bonding with my house.

I cannot believe that it will be ours in one more week.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

I know, I know, enough...

...about Glee already!

But one more thing...

I am thinking that a fun social experiment for all of my Friends of Glee would be to make a blog...something like "Gleeful Reflections" where the lessons of a particular episode of Glee could be discussed.

Last night's for example. You could write something about one of the following topics:

What It's Like to Be a Girl
My First Time (Like a Virgin)
How Sexism Has Affected Me
Owning My Body
My Secret Theatre Geek Boyfriend (What? Just me? I don't THINK so.)
An Empowering Moment

Okay. I know. I'm geeking out over Glee, which might just be too nauseating for words. But I know I would have a lot to say about any of those topics, and I suspect others would as well. Maybe. I'm pondering. Chime in, though, if you've got a thought.

Oh, and P.S... An update on today. The girls loved coming with me to my middle school rehearsal, and then to the high school later, where they got to spend an hour basking in the sunny, blonde, magical smiling energy of one of their favorite babysitters while eating ice cream. Meanwhile, we chose a fairly random musical which actually rather excites me. I'm sure you'll be hearing about it very soon. And my rehearsal with the world's most adorable middle school students went well this morning. My favorite Seussical song is called "Alone in the Universe."

I will sing a little of it now. Ahem...

I'm alone in the Universe, so alone in the Universe.
My own planets and stars are glowing.
No one notices anything, not one person is listening.
I've found magic, but they won't see it.
But I have wings, and I can fly
around the moon and far beyond the sky.
And someday soon, you will hear my plea...
One small voice in the Universe, one true friend in the Universe
Who believes in me...

And of course, the singer finds that true friend in the Universe, and the discovery of the song is about the magic you find when you meet a kindred spirit. I talked about that at length with the two seventh grade singers today, about how everyone feels that way sometimes, just alone in the Universe, waiting to be understood, and that they have to talk about when THEY felt that way while they sing it, while also thinking about how their CHARACTERS feel that way, and then damned if they didn't both sing the song with passion in their hearts and tears in their eyes. It was one of those magical moments where I say, where I KNOW...something happened here. A real moment happened right smack before my very eyes. THIS is why I do this job. THIS is why it matters...

And see? Glee says the same thing.

Art matters. Connection matters.

Today, I really love my life.

Another Post I Can't Title

This is another one of those stream-of-consciousness ramblings that I don't know how to name. I liked "Petals on the Wind," but it makes me think of that VC Andrews book, the sequel to Flowers in the Attic. It's bizarre to think that that's what I was reading in middle school. But they were freaky and I loved them.

Anyway...random things on my mind this early vacation-week morning...

I loved last night's Glee, the Madonna episode, even though my DVR did not catch the last five minutes because of American Idol. The musical numbers were amazing, and the whole "Like a Virgin" sequence was absolutely hot. Loved it!

Speaking of geeks in high school, some of my favorite people, we are choosing the musical today for next fall. Always a big decision, and I hope the discussion goes smoothly and that we make a wise choice. There are a lot of things on my list that are slightly less ambitious than usual...because I need some stability in that arena next year. I feel compelled to choose something over which I can have a strong handle. Plus, I totally want to do Legally Blonde the following year when it becomes available so it'll be nice to do something simpler in between. We'll see how it goes.

I'm buying my house in a week and a half. I'm not even freaking out a little bit, except for all of the reminding flickers of euphoria whenever I pursue my paint swatches. Which is daily.

It's a quiet Wednesday morning of school vacation week, and I have to work at both of my schools today. But only today, so it's not so bad. My middle school show is significantly behind schedule, so hopefully rehearsing for a few hours today will help it to feel a little more stable. I'm moving throughout production week, which ironically makes production week less stressful...'cause, really...what difference does it make? It's a show. And it will be absolutely fine, and no more fine if I worry about it than if I don't. So I'm not going to worry. I'm going to think about swatches. And there will be no Pajama Done Day for this one. It'll be a Pajama Paint Day, which, in this case, is infinitely better.

I love the morning mist on the pond outside the Vacation House.

Now I will go drink more coffee about that. Have a wonderful Wednesday.

Saturday, April 17, 2010


These are photos I took when we did the home inspection last September. On Friday, we get to go to our soon-to-be house to have the flooring estimate people come, and I will have a chance to commune. None of this is our furniture or colors or anything, but you might get an idea of it.

This is the family room ...whose title we haven't settled on. Family room? Living room? Hearth room? We ordered all of the furniture today - very cozy and comfortable with a double reclining sofa. Colors are picked out, including "ginger spice" for the fireplace bricks and "Mark Twain House Gold" for the walls above. And linen white for the trim and baseboard. That's the vision.

See how the family room connects to the kitchen?

Here's the kitchen (looking through to the dining room). More Mark Twain Gold for the walls, (the cabinets will stay white) and I'm going to make a little valance curtain out of this fabric:

It'll be small, and I must confess that I'm only picking this fabric to tie together the gold walls and to match the cherry cookie jar I bought at a yard sale this summer. Is that strange? To plan everything around a yard-sale cookie jar? I don't even know. I like cherries.

(And this, incidentally, is my first foray into trying to figure out how to insert pictures into my blog. Any other time I've done it successfully has been totally accidental. Now I'm trying to do it successfully on purpose. I write this from the Saads living room, where I'm babysitting and CANNOT work their TV. Nathan can work it, but I cannot, and I think it would be mean to wake him up so he can make the Sex and the City DVD work. Instead, I'm using the time on my hands to learn something new. And eat the kids' leftover Easter candy. Worst. Godmother. Ever.)


Here is our front porch. We originally wanted to put farmer railings on, but now I envision people sitting on the little ledge. But the swing will go all the way to the left, and my little bistro set in the middle. See the flagstones? I love flagstones!

Here is the a shot of the parlor, where our old living room furniture and our player piano will go. This will be the last room we paint, because I really like this color.

This will be my office. I'm going to take off the closet doors and put up floral curtains (scrapbook stuff behind that) and my desk (aka my MIL's table) will go right beside the closet. Lisa's fainting couch under the window. Five white bookcases on the opposite wall, plus the futon kind of next to where that blue bureau is now. Yes, it will totally fit! Color choice is still "watermelon slice." It's

This is the downstairs bathroom. It will be a color called French Violet, which is a medium purple, and it will have a fairy theme. I'm going to paint fairy quotes on the walls and put copies of some of the pictures from Abby's beloved flower fairy books on the walls.

Here is the entry way/mudroom. It's really a 3-season porch, and we're currently in negotiation about the use of this room. Either way, I want to put a bunch of small pictures of our friends on the wall posts from parties we've had together. I want that energy to bless our house. And I'm going to paint the words to the Irish Blessing above the windows. "May the road rise to meet you, the wind be always at your back. May the sunshine warm upon your face, the rains fall soft upon your fields. And until we meet again, may God hold you in the palm of his hands." (The God part...well, that will be whatever God means to the reader. I'm pretty sure my mother will have something to say if I change that part to Universe or Athena or Santa Claus.)

And here is the vision board I made, the one that's been in the downstairs bathroom at the Vacation House. I think it helped to make everything happen. I really do.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

A Mix-CD Dedication

I have a lot of other things I could be doing right now, things I should probably be working on, focusing on. There are tests to correct and costumes to sort, but what am I doing? I am making a mix CD for my new house.

Patrick and I have a furniture shopping date tomorrow night, and then on Saturday, we’ll be going out to get new house things with the girls. We’re going to order their desks, and buy the paint and the bedding. The girls are still way into mythology, so to keep them focused, they have a Team Mythology All Around Us scavenger hunt, where they have to find symbols of mythology, identify to whom they belong, and make a quick sketch of what it is. For example - an owl, Athena, on the ugly lamp in the Modern Room at Jordan Furniture. There will be little prizes along the way, and hopefully they’ll stay cooperative and engaged while Patrick and I try out every single reclining sofa in the entire place.

And on the way, we’ll listen to the mix CD. Here are the songs:

Don’t Stop Believing - the Glee version, because we’ve been playing that all winter to try to stay positive. And it totally worked!

Dreams - the Cranberries. That’s Patrick’s god-song, and it blesses us. I love that one.

Dancing in the Streets - ‘cause I totally feel like doing that all the time. I just can’t stop smiling! Smiling's my favorite!

Sir Duke - the one that goes, “You can feel it all oooooooover!” It’s all about music…, happiness.

Keep on Growing - Sheryl Crow. There will be a lot of growing that will happen in this new house, by all of us.

If I Had $1,000,000 - Barenaked Ladies. LOVE this song. And the thing is…if I had a million dollars, I would buy this exact house. I really would. But I would have a treehouse with a little fridge and yes, I’d still eat Kraft dinner.

Happy Working Song - from Enchanted. Remember that scene where Amy Adams cleans the Grey's Anatomy guy's house? Because it would be lovely if the little mice and cockroaches could help us paint the walls and put the dirty socks in the washer. I will be singing to all of them. I will be hoping for birdies and bunnies and things to come, though.

I Know it’s Today - from Shrek, the Musical. This is a song with three princesses that the girls and I sing together at the tops of our freaking lungs in the car. It’s all about how the princess knows that today is the day her prince will come along. Every day…it’s today. It’s about continuing to believe - to know - that your dream will come, no matter how many days you spend waiting in the tower.

All You Need is Love - from the Across the Universe soundtrack. Self-explanatory.

Somebody to Love - again, the Glee version. It’s exciting and makes us all sway in the car. You can’t help it.

Don’t Fence Me In - from the Kit Kittredge soundtrack. “I want to be myself in the evening breeze, and listen to the rhythm of the cottonwood trees…send me off forever, but I ask you please…don’t fence me in.” We are all making space for each other.

Haven’t Met You Yet - Michael Buble. I love this snappy, peppy song, and even though I’ve got my fellow and I’m so glad of him, I like the idea that new life is waiting around the corner all the time. (No, not a baby! Bite your tongue.) I am sort of thinking of this one as the characters that Patrick and I have yet to write.

Movin’ Right Along - the Muppets. ‘Cause Kermit is my idol and it’s a perfect road trip song. “Getting there is half the fun, come share it with me…”

Build Me Up Buttercup - One of my paint swatches is called Buttercup. Yeah…this one is a stretch. But it's a fun song. Summery.

Our Song - Taylor Swift. This one is mostly for Abby, but I love the image of a slammin’ screen door.

The Best is Yet to Come - Frank Sinatra. Because it always, always is. But now’s great, too.

Die Vampire Die - from (title of show) This has become a bit of an anthem for me this year. Of course, we’ll have to skip this one if the girls are in the car, because they say the f-word like three times. Oh, how this song charges me up. It’s both a sword and a shield.

Our Love is Here to Stay - Harry Connick Jr. ‘Cause it’s our song.

Signed Sealed Delivered - My house is singing this one to me. “Signed, sealed, delivered…I’m yours!” In just two more weeks, it will be. Plus, this song makes me think of Tom Hanks walking through New York City in spring with a bouquet of daisies. (You've Got Mail) * Happiness! *

Don’t Rain on My Parade - Yes, Glee again. But that episode about Sectionals when she sang this was my favorite hour of TV of, like, the decade. It’s my ringtone and it makes me smile every single time. I’m so marching my band out and beating my drum.

You Can’t Always Get What You Want - Alright already with the Glee!! “If you try sometimes, you just might find…you get what you need.”

I got what I wanted and what I needed. I am so freaking grateful I can barely keep my heart in my chest.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Dear Sixth Graders

Dear Sixth Graders,

I know you are used to having a sunny, peppy, show-tune warbling teacher. I wear sparkly shoes and I give you nicknames and I cry with you over Tuck Everlasting and take you outside to read under the trees in the springtime. I'm generally fairly lovely to be with.

But you see, dear ones, there comes a time in most sunny women's lives when the rainclouds drift by, covering up the sunbeams, and those rainclouds have a name. They are called PMS. And they are dark and scary, and full of weepiness, and sometimes, darlings, they make thunderous noises. Reeeeaaalllly loud ones.

Like today, for instance. I was perfectly well intentioned in my plan to continue our rousing game of Greek Test Review Bingo. I really was excited, and I the little prizes you requested - Hershey Bars, Swedish fish, and a few books and other random crap prizes that you don't realize your predecesors gave me last year for Christmas. But it that HARD to keep the bingo chips ON the desk? Do you HAVE TO KEEP DROPPING THEM ON THE FLOOR? Since you don't have chalkboards any more in your modern classrooms, let me explain to you what NAILS on a chalkboard SOUNDS LIKE. You LIKE that? No?? Well, the sound of the FREAKING BINGO CHIPS hitting the floor every THREE SECONDS is exactly the SAME to me! DO YOU HEAR ME??? I will put them back in the coffee can right this red hot second! I will disqualify you from every future bingo game in your entire middle school career and I will CRUCIFY you on your report card and make sure you get GROUNDED FOR THE ENTIRE SUMMER. Have I made myself clear?????


Now, if you were smart, you would try to sit very still, you would not make eye contact with the beast that is now inhabiting your gentle, goofy teacher-lady, and tomorrow, you would bring her chocolate. And not the freaking Hershey bars, people. The good kind. Or gummy frogs. Those work, too.

In two days, I'll be nicer. In ten years, approximately half of you (the female half) will look back on your middle school years, reflecting warmly about your usually warm and smiley teacher, who unexpectly would be manic and grumpy... hmmm...once a month. "Ooooh!" you'll say, knowingly. "I get it now." And I so hope you'll forgive me.

The Shell of Your Teacher,
Soon to Return to Normal

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

And...STILL Basking

Still feeling all kinds of joy. Buckets of beamingly happy joyfulness. And I'm singing songs about it.

I had a bad day at work yesterday. (Or, rather, I should say, a really bad part in a good day of work.) I had to remove a kid from her part in the play for not showing up for rehearsals, and she totally lost her mind about it. And while I do feel really badly for her, even that - a sobbing, yelling eleven year old - couldn't totally destroy my mood. It clouded it, but didn't utterly rain on the parade. That's saying something.

I'm making lists and plans and picking out swatches. I'm browsing for furniture and paint colors and curtains. I'm dreaming pretty dreams.

We have some questions about the energy of the house. It's been through a lot, this house, and definitely seen some sadness. I don't think it's haunted, I think it's disappointed and depressed. And while I think that having our energy and bright colors in there will help, it definitely needs some magic. I have a plan (of course) and I know just who to call to fix that. I am feeling grateful today that I have people in my life that I can call upon for important things - someone to re-wire a light, and others to paint the bedrooms, and still others to design curtains, and others to fix the mojo. I have friends I could call and cry to during this whole process, and it is not lost on me that I have YOU...the whoever you are out there reading this, who may or may not be a part of my every day life, but likely at least know who I am, and who have been thinking good thoughts about this, and wishing me well. I think those well-wishes helped to make this happen. I know it.

Thanks a bunch for that. Really.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010


I'm still just floating. I really am. We walked through the house last night after everything happened, just to make sure, as Patrick said, that the seller didn't spill lamb's blood on the floor or spraypaint "Die, New Owners, Die" on the living room wall. She hadn't. And it was exactly as I remembered it, as I have walked through it in my mind for the past eight months of waiting. Great big bedrooms for the girls with lots of windows. A sunny front porch. A real fireplace. An office for Patrick.

A room of my own.

It's all coming right in the nick of time. We have to close on the last day of April to make it all work for the bank, and our rental is up at the Vacation House on May 1st. I can hear the little voice in my head, the one that never let go of wanting this house even when it was dead and we were told it was impossible, the plaintive voice that kept saying, " was SUPPOSED to happen. It was SUPPOSED to work! I felt it! I believed!" That same voice is very smug this morning, quite smarmy, even. And she's saying, "Toldja so."

I can't even wipe the grin off my face.

Monday, April 5, 2010

Like a Bolt Out of the Blue...

When Anne Shirley finds out that she can go to college after all, after having given up that dream, she says, “Oh, Marilla! I feel like someone has handed me the moon and I don’t know what to do with it!”

That’s how I feel today.

When we found out last Monday that this house wasn’t going to happen, I felt absolutely heartbroken. Really. Like, crushed. And part of it was actually losing the house that I loved. And partly because I truly, really, deeply belived in the idea of the Law of Attraction. That I had the power to dream and manifest what I wanted in my life by the combination of the power of positive thinking, and my own hard work. I took the steps to get what I wanted, all the while believing that my thoughts had the power to make it happen. It was a leap of faith, and experiement in believing, and…it worked. It freaking worked. All week I’ve been feeling like the Universe and I had kind of broken up. I was singing sad songs while the rain poured down the window pane, feeling all disappointed in my Universe/Godforce/Spirit/Santa Claus. Whatever. That good in the world. And now? Universe…you and me are back on.

We got the house. Not the new, settling house. The great big Dreamhouse with a room for everyone and a two-car garage. We took a risk, decided to walk away from the short sale, and the bank said, “Fine. FINE. You win. Done. Well played, Brownes. Well played.”

We got the house that’s five minutes from the Saads. That’s two minutes from the highway. That passes Dunkin Donuts AND CVS on the way to my work. The one with rhododendrons for building fairy houses, and the perfect space for the player piano.

We’re not signed on the dotted line yet (tomorrow morning) and I’m still jaded enough to reserve a tiny bit of heart-armor until it’s totally done. But as it stands right now, we got the house.

I know I’m being dramatic about it, and I totally don’t even care. I feel dramatic about it. It’s the scene in Sixteen Candles where Molly Ringwald sits on the piano with that cute guy on her birthday. Happy ending. Happy beginning.

Remember when we first got computers in school and you learned how to make your name go in a continual scroll down the screen? And if you were super-cool, you could make it look like it was kind of swirling? And your wrote commands like list and run and go. If I remembered how, I would design one of those for the Universe, and it would just say thank you thank you thank you thank you thank you thank you……….

Friday, April 2, 2010

Looking in the Window

I love a day off where I can linger in the morning, drinking coffee and watching the Today Show. They're currently showing one of those bits of footage where a soldier coming home from Iraq surprises his/her child in the classroom or on the sports field. Oh, I could just watch those all day. Way to start the day with happy tears.

It's Good Friday. When I was a kid, Good Friday was a very reverent day in our family. And while it was often frustrating, (and my resistence to it caused much trouble in my early adult life) I still did appreciate the ritual of sitting still for a few hours in the afternoon, reflecting on the somber day. (Though I HATED Good Friday mass, and that song that went, "Where you there when they nailed him to the tree. Ooooooooh...." I always wanted to shout, "NO!! I WASN'T there! I swear, I didn't kill Jesus! I would have been nice to him!") I felt personally guilty when we'd read the Passion, and I would have to say the "crowd" lines that said things like, "Crucify him." It seemed barbaric to force us all to metaphorically kill our Savior two thousand more times. Wasn't once enough?? I don't go to mass anymore for a huge long list of reasons, and I will spend this Good Friday morning looking for new houses, and the afternoon snuggled on the couch with my girls watching Peter Cottontail and The Easter Bunny is Coming to Town. (Remember, from the 70's? I bought them on DVD...our VHS copies are, like everything else, in storage.) Secular, but still, the ritual of quiet time is somehow part of my muscle memory.

Good Friday and Holy Thursday make me think of John Trovato, my former principal, and the night I slept beside him as he slipped into a coma and angels told me what to say. I will write about that here someday, and actually really wanted to write about it today, but I need my journal that I wrote in that night to do it justice. Guess where that is? Yep. Storage. Along with all of our spring clothes and the little Easter Bunny platter that holds the deviled eggs I'm supposed to bring on Sunday. And my flip-flops and my copy of Shakespeare in Love , my cell phone manual, and the cord that allows me to transfer the pictures out of my camera and into my computer. I want my stuff back. Right. Smack. Now.

Two people I really like started blogging fairly recently, and it just makes me wish everyone I liked would blog. I love reading people's stories, and knowing the details of lives that I wouldn't otherwise be able to glance into. It's partly the same thing that leads me to gaze into people's windows when they don't pull their shades down at night. I'm not looking for naked people or anything (though that's fun, too.) I like to see what they hang on their walls or whether or not they're sitting at their kitchen tables. Just a glimpse, you know?

Here's your glimpse into my window right now. Abby is on the computer, looking for more pictures of Greek Gods and Goddesses. (I've finally gotten her to understand that she CAN'T put naked pictures of Aphrodite in the scrapbook she made if she's going to bring it to school.) Amelia is trying to download a game for her Nintendo DSi. Patrick is still snoozing, and Ginger is standing, sentry-like, outside the bedroom door, waiting for the first opportunity to leap on his lap, her favorite place to be. I woke up in time to make the coffee, watch the President's visit to Massachusetts from yesterday on the Today Show, and write this. In a moment, I will bring Patrick coffee in bed, and get us all ready to go out with the realtor to find a new House of Dreams this morning. I'm currently snuggled under my cat blanket in my giant Thayer hooded sweatshirt that I bought at the Salvation Army, looking out at the mist on the pond of the Vacation House. The sun is shining, I have a lovely weekend ahead with like ten things I'm really looking forward to, and I'm gearing my mind up to have a productive day.

I am so grateful for the sunshine.