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Wow. Harry Lee died today. This is the large redneck asian sheriff from Jefferson Parish. I remember being a teenager and Lee was quoted as saying that his officers were instructed to pull over and question any black people seen in predominantly white neighborhoods. I remember being astonished that he could get away with saying that publicly. I knew that sort of thing happened but for a sheriff to make it actual policy.... I don't recall if he ever apologized but he certainly didn't lose his offfice. He'd been ill for awhile but I was surprised to hear he died.
Yesterday would have been my grandfather's 101st birthday. He died of emphysema almost 15 years ago. He was a wonderful man, devoted to his wife and children. He was a quiet man and it took me years to realize the love he felt for all of us. When we were all there he would mostly sit back and watch the whirlwind of activity. But if there was a quiet moment he was happy to come watch you on the beach or listen to your stories. I wish he could have met my children. I know he would've loved his grandchildren.
The vampires called me the other day. This is my pet name for the Blood Center. They want platelets. It takes me 2 hours to give platelets. I agreed to come in at 9 today, knowing I couldn't make it until 10. Went 10 and told them I didn't have time to give platelets but could give blood. "But we really need your platelets." This was particularly pathetic because the center was empty except for techs. OK, fine. They take my blood pressure. 78 over 58. Try again. 88 over 62. Too little pressure. Agreed to come again next Wednesday.
Our dog Johnny picked up a shelled pecan earlier. He chewed it and spit it out and chewed again. Reminded me of my first dog Lisa. If you gave her a nut she would roll around on her back tossing it up in the air repeatedly and frisking about. She was very strange. I later had a dog named Liza. (David named her. I'm not that unoriginal.) A neighbor would put out peanuts for the squirrels. Liza loved to eat the shells. Once she picked up an intact peanut, chewed, and spat it out, disgusted. "There's something in this one!"
Up at 6:15 a.m. Neice's 12th birthday. Bought her iced coffee and brought it to her along with a book she wanted. Home again. Brought Zeke to school. Stayed for "Montessori meeting." To the library. Oops, library's closed on Fridays. To the grocery store for stuff for Mom's birthday party. Library computer called. They have the book I requested. "Then open!" Lunch. Picked up CPR training supplies. Then gynecologist appointment. All of this with Isaiah. Played little piggies with Isaiah during pap smear. Bought grill at Lowe's. Brought it to Jenni. Shower. Dinner at Liuzza's Folk music at Fairgrinds. Whew!
My stepmother pisses me off. Tonight at Mom's birthday party a friend was there with her baby who is 2 weeks older than Isaiah. Jean: "Does William play on the floor on his own? Isaiah won't play on the floor on his own." Granted Isaiah has been demanding but I told Jean he does play on the floor more now and she can just stuff it! (I didn't say that last bit.) She is always comparing my children to someone else's children in subtle and not easily confronted ways. I miss the babysitting but sopmetimes I'm glad she's in Annapolis.
The Saints lost again. I'm not a football fan but this city needs a morale boost. Come on! You people are paid lots of money. You can't do better than that? We really need to win at something right now. We need a concrete victory that the city can see and feel. Yes, restaurants are coming back. Houses are being rebuilt. The numbers are getting better. But a winning football team would be much more tangible. Then again maybe it's better this way. It's familiar. And cheering for the Saints has always been a bonding experience in its own way.
Isaiah stood briefly today. He was playing with a new toy at the office, a little table with buttons on it that activate different things. I was sitting on a love seat processing payroll and I looked up to see he had pulled to a standing position. As I spoke up for my coworker to look Isaiah picked up both hands to reach for other buttons, stood for a fraction of a second, and fell backward. Luckily I caught him. So cute. Later at my father's house he did a definite crawl for about a foot towards his Aunt Jenni.
Isaiah is definitely crawling now. He can get down on all fours, crawl a bit (with some effort still), and then sit back up. We have mobility. Nothing is safe. He is also, in my certainly objective opinion, breathtakingly gorgeous. In other news I am feeling quite Donna Reed. I used a rotisserie chicken to make a pasta salad for mom's birthday party. I also used some parsley and onions in potato salad. Today I boiled down the chicken carcass, parsley stems, and onion skins and froze the stock in empty baby food containers. I am so domestic. Sickeningly so. :)
Things that have made me happy recently:
Seeing the parrots hanging on my neighbor's bird feeder
Looking into the deep blue of Isaiah's eyes
Walking in and seeing David and Zeke both deeply engrossed in books
Eating chocolate chips and peanut butter
Watching Isaiah go from sitting to all fours to sitting again, and thoroughly enjoying his budding independence
Using my composter
Giving platelets today (finally got that off my list of things to do)
When a teacher at Zeke's school commented on how Zeke talks about Isaiah and is clearly such a good big brother
Some things that annoy me:
People who do not believe in global warming, or who do not think it is a big deal. You people just need to go join the Flat Earth Society and get it over with.
People who litter. When I tell Zeke not to litter I say "We are not trashy people."
People who curse at or otherwise verbally abuse their children.
Typos, especially my own.
Dogs that will run away from their owners if they get loose.
The little hairs that occasionally grow in the scar on my chin. (EW!)
Automatic computer updates.
Does anyone remember being potty trained? It is kind of a funny thing. This is a big deal, something psychologists say can be very traumatic and can shape one's personality. But I don't remember. I have two rather distinct memories of when we lived in Massachusetts, which was when I was about two years old. But they don't include diapers. Zeke is only seven and he says he doesn't remember potty training. I wonder why that is. Early memories often are of things that are upsetting or very distinct, but this singular hurdle doesn't imprint on our brains. Does it?
Ah, mobility. Nothing is safe from the child. I was just in Isaiah's room with him. I was sorting clothes, sitting on the floor. Isaiah was playing next to me. He got a leaf that had blown in the back door. Straight into the mouth. I got it from him and flicked it toward the back door. Zaya: "No problem!" Crawled straight to it and into the mouth. Of course, I'd been trying all morning to get him to eat. I need to freeze baby food into little leaf shaped molds and serve them to him on the floor. Yum!
I told friends the other day that the upcoming American Presidential election is looking like Slytherin versus Hufflepuff. I really can't see Hillary or Obama winning. I just don't think this country will elect either a woman or a person of color (who also has a name with bad overtones) no matter how good either person may be. I can't see it happening. And that means four more years of a Republican president. And if the Republicans can't be beat this year, really, shouldn't we just give up? Maybe Louisiana will secede. Or else Canada is looking better and better.
Breastfeeding is such a strange thing. I understand why some women are uncomfortable with it. It's certainly a sensual experience and one might say sexual. The way the baby relishes his mother's breast, the pleasure he takes from it, is more similar to sex than anything else. I wonder if this makes a difference in future sexuality? Are people who were breastfed different sexually from those who weren't? Are they more comfortable with their sexuality? What about people fed by wet nurses? Are they more likely to commit adultery, seeking pleasure from someone other than their partners?
Things I worry about:
- global warming
- Johnny biting someone and having to be put down
- my mother getting alzheimer's or otherwise being incapacitated and my having to care for her
- my father drinking and having an accident and possibly killing himself or someone else
- getting depressed
- irritable bowel syndrome
- hurricanes, flooding, etc.
- Zeke not doing well in school
- Zeke not enjoying school
- Zeke or Isaiah growing up and developing depression, alcoholism, or any number of possibly inherited syndromes
- Isaiah getting lead poisoning or otherwise being adversely effected by the current New Orleans ecology
- four more years of a Republican president
I'm tired. I'm tired. I'm tired. I'm tired. I'm tired. I'm tired. I'm tired. I'm tired. I'm tired. I'm tired. I'm tired. I'm tired. I'm tired. I'm tired. I'm tired. I'm tired. I'm tired. I'm tired. I'm tired. I'm tired. I'm tired. I'm tired. I'm tired. I'm tired. I'm tired. I'm tired. I'm tired. I'm tired. I'm tired. I'm tired. I'm tired. I'm tired. I'm tired. I'm tired. I'm tired. I'm tired. I'm tired. I'm tired. I'm tired. I'm tired. I'm tired. I'm tired. I'm tired. I'm tired. I'm tired. I'm tired. I'm tired. Did I mention I am tired?
Zeke made a paper cut out of a woman. He gave it to Isaiah the other day while I was working cleaning house. He said it was a picture of me and it would keep him happy while I was busy.
It was said the other day on the radio that hell is the absence of love. Zeke said that in that case no one in this family would ever be in hell.
The other day we went on a walk. Zeke began picking up acorns, peeling the shells off them, and leaving them in strategic places for the squirrels.
Well, I wrote a post about watching 28 Weeks Later but by the time I finished it, what with dealing with kiddo and life in general, I had been logged out without knowing it and lost the whole bloody post. How annoying is that? I had the post perfect, whittled down to one hundred words and saying exactly what I wanted it to say, hit preview, and blammo! It was gone into the ether. So now I am just going to complain for one hundred words so I can catch up. That is what I am going to do right now.
Busy day. David and I talked recently about how the croissants we get usually are not nearly as good as Croissant D'Or, which is in the French Quarter and so not too convenient to us. So this morning we went to Croissant D'Or and pigged out on croissants. We were glad that they lived up to our memories. Then we went to a blues festival in Lafayette Square. Ran into some of our Jazz Fest oak tree neighbors. We know each other because we always camp at the same spot at Jazz Fest. And then there was book club but....
Finished reading Copper Beech by Maeve Binchy. Of course, this was my book club book and book club was Saturday but better late than never I guess. It was really good. This was the first book I have read by Binchy and I will definitely look out for another. I did get a little confused at times because each chapter is about a different character and each time you start over at an early time. I would lose track of who is who and who is what age. But a little flipping around would solve any confusion. Good book overall.
I bought a book for my niece Reina for her 12th birthday. Her mom, my sister Jenni, told me of the book. Reina wanted it. Jenni felt it wasn't appropriate but relented and decided to let Reina have it. I reminded Jenni that I read Lolita when I was 13. She reminded me that I was taking creative writing classes from a lunatic. Anyway I told Reina I'd love to read it when she is done. She dropped it by earlier today. I'm going to start it tonight. I love the idea of swapping books back and forth with her.
Went to a planning meeting to build a KaBoom playground in Broadmoor. Brought Haley and Zeke. (They want children involved in the planning process.) They asked the kids to draw a plan for what they want their playground to look like. Of course, Zeke's was the only playground with a haunted castle and a zombie graveyard complete with tombstones that say RIP and have crosses or stars of David on the top. (A few of both.) And Haley identified herself as Henry. Just for fun. When someone told her she shouldn't lie in a church she said "But I'm Jewish."
Isaiah is now clapping hands and moving all over the place. We think he has said "clap clap" and "dada." He is quite enchanting and a lot of fun at this stage. He is also getting along better with the babysitter which is very nice.
I was supposed to meet with some staff today regarding some botched progress notes but, of course, no one showed up but me. I now get to call them all and tell them to get their butts in next Wednesday or they will be replaced. I need ten more words to make one hundred words.
i wish i understood why i have a hard time saying what i really want. i want a real birthday party. so why can't i ask for one? i know i will be extremely upset if i don't have one. and i know david would be happy to throw something for me. so why can't i just say what i want? perhaps because it would feel so much nicer to have it just happen without having to ask. aren't gifts and surprises nicer when you don't have to ask for them? "deny yourself and hope someone will see" - carly simon
Zeke didn't have school because of the monthly Professional Development day. Brought Zeke and Isaiah to the Children's Museum. Zeke loves the Children's Museum. I rarely bring him because it's downtown and hard to park. It's also extremely tedious after awhile. But since we parked by a meter there was the excuse that the meter was going to run out. Then we went to Zeke's school for report card conference. The teacher said he isn't working up to potential in math, that he has the typical smart child characteristic of not wanting to work hard at things. No surprises there.
Halloween is no longer a day. It is a season. Today we went to Zeke's fall fest and then to Boo at the Zoo, one of my favorite local events. I made a bat costume for Isaiah out of an old black umbrella and a black turtleneck with ears made out of felt and a white headband. He won't wear the ears, of course. I bought a vampire costume for Zeke. They were quite cute. I volunteered at the Fall Fest, setting up and manning the Stick the Face on the Pumpkin booth. The kids at Boo are so cute....
Had Fall Fest after church so last night I rinsed out the filthy costumes and hemmed and patched Zeke's Dracula cape. One person asked if Zaya could fly. I replied "He thinks he can!" Zeke ate candy all day. My theory is just let them finish the candy as quickly as possible, get really sick and get it over with. Zeke also got three mini-pumpkins that he painted and two stuffed animals from church. We had a birthday dinner for Minh at Jenni's. It is amazing how she opens presents without commenting or showing and then just puts them away.
Finished reading The Truth About Forever by Sarah Dressen. This is the book I bought for my niece Reina which Jenni was not sure was appropriate. I think it was perfectly fine for a 12 year old. It was also rather good juvenile fiction. It was a bit morose in parts but it was the point of view of an adolescent girl and who is more morose than that. The main character's one again and off again boyfriend sounded like he must have some form of autism. Not sure why anyone would have put up with him. Pretty good read.
I am so Donna Reed! Monday I helped out with Zeke's school's wrapping paper sale. The delivery came in and I helped organize everything and deliver products to the classrooms. Tuesday I made homemade meatballs, hemmed Zeke's Dracula cloak for the second time (he said it was still too long), and made 24 cupcakes for his class for Halloween. The cupcakes had white frosting with green sprinkles (for the grass) and then milano cookies cut in half with RIP written on them in leftover batter (written with a spaghetti stick), and then a spider ring on each cupcake. Yay me!
Happy Halloween! Zeke said to me in a very concerned voice that I really needed to dress Isaiah as a bat and not a honey pot because Halloween is the night that the dark spirits walk the earth and they will get Isaiah if he is not dressed as something scary. So Isaiah was a bat and Zeke was Dracula. They were very cute in their scary costumes. We took the kids (ours and the cousins and some others) trick or treating, then dropped off the sleeping baby, a toddler, and the rest of the adults and I took the kids for about another mile around the neighborhood. Fun, fun.
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