Remember when you were a kid and your mom would tell you to go use the restroom and you would protest? Usually, this nagging preceded a long car trip or a visit to a place without facilities. Usually, if you were like me, you whined something akin to "But I don't have to go."
Wednesday, May 22, 2013
Saturday, May 18, 2013
If it's not the locusts, it's a teenage boy. Teenage boys eat voraciously without discrimination. Which makes them grow like Jack's magic seeds. Pants that fit them in the morning are capris by afternoon.
Friday, May 17, 2013
First, let me say that I think I have died and gone to summer camp . . . The luxury kind . . . For adults.
Thursday, May 16, 2013
As you can see, I found something that passes for business casual (at least the Barnsley Gardens Resort Wine Snob, Greg Tieague, approved of it). Unfortunately, he didn't approve of my wine tastes.
Wednesday, May 15, 2013
(Serenity might only be on my itinerary. It's May and the school year is drawing to a close and chaos has crept into every corner of my house. I'm glad for this fine excuse to escape the May-hem.)
But I digress from the real reason I MUST post today. Tomorrow, I make the three hour drive from here to there. Today, I pack. The coordinator kindly sent a few suggestions about what to bring. For dinner, it is advised to dress "business casual."
Being a freelance writer, I work in a home office sans coworkers and water cooler. No one meets me at the kitchen faucet to chat about how a project is going. As I write, three squirrels are running up and down the dogwood tree outside my window. This is the view from my desk:
My social networking for the day will include scrolling FaceBook, typing this blog and fielding whines from my progeny.
On "casual" day at my "office" when I'm doing my "business" I wear pajamas and don't answer the front door. My general wardrobe includes denim and duck boots, because I often clear my mind by retreating out to the garden to pull a few weeds. I may live a sheltered life, but I doubt this is the business casual attire to which my gracious hostess refers.
Lo, I am a professional writer without a professional wardrobe. I hide behind my computer monitor and only video skype on days that I have brushed my hair and put some color on my face. Even then, I might be lounging about in my PJs.
Panic that I own the proverbial "nothing to wear" (but pajamas and jeans) is setting in. I'm headed upstairs to remove everything from my closet, toss it about on my husband's side of the bed, and examine every piece of clothing, carefully analyzing whether the words "business" and "casual" could both be used - by someone other than myself - to describe it.
Perhaps the Barnsley Gardens Fairy Godmother might help!
Or maybe you could give me some insight into what counts for business casual?
Monday, May 13, 2013
Keeping one eye open during the patriarch’s thirty minute blessing, we watch the children’s tables in the hall. Gramps gives the annual prayer-speech about how he and “mother” started all this, mentioning each of the Lord’s blessings (big, small and questionable) and all relatives deceased, absent or unwelcome. The irreverent among us let their minds wander and arrive at a singular thought: Where’d that Wild Turkey get off to?
--Excerpted from Thanksmas, a memoir of the most wondered-at time of the year
Tuesday, May 7, 2013
It's almost like my house has a split personality. Porchaven in the front,
My small orchard consists of a pear tree, a plum tree, a fig tree, a pecan tree and three thornless blackberry bushes. They aren't really organized into an orchard the way one would think. They just occupy any old square footage of earth that was available on planting day. Each fights for its life.
I've slipped an herb plot right under the neighbors' noses, putting it in a corner of a front flower bed.
And because every farm needs animals in order to be a real farm, I have set up a hive for the package of bees that will arrive in about two weeks.
Bees are not the kind of animal I pictured myself herding when I started designing my urban homestead. Honestly, I think it isn't very farmer-like to fear one's flock. But a cow grazing in my front yard wouldn't go over very well with the authorities or those who own homes adjacent to mine.
So I've been talking to my husband about selling Porchaven and purchasing acreage outside of town. He seems to be warming to the idea and to help get him over the land divide, I took him out to a farm on Sunday. He petted the horses. He helped round up the donkeys that stubbornly refused to be rounded. He called to the belligerent cows and he cuddled the barn cats.
It looked certain that I was making a real breakthrough with him, thus I went in the feed room and scooped a container of cracked corn to cast to the chickens. My soul mate was taken in by the throaty coos of the delighted hens.
But suddenly something in his brain snapped. He impulsively snatched a fish net from a nail and said, "What's this for? Catching roosters?" And he went all city-kid at the petting zoo on me, chasing panicked chickens that clucked and flapped and kicked up dust and escaped via any route they could out into coyote territory.
I'm taking it as a sign that he may not be ready for the farm.
Friday, May 3, 2013
Occasionally, I feel the impulse to slowly slide down my stairs, pressing my body to the cold plaster wall, like the next hapless lamb in a black and white horror film. Fingers scrambling to grip the smooth surface, knuckles white from the effort, eyes wide and wildly watchful, I - the heroine - creep closer and closer to a dark destiny at the foot of the stairs.
The audience yells, "Noooooo! Stop! Don't go! Turn around! Ruuuuuunnnnnnnn!" But the screen writer of this, my B-movie plot, dictates in the stage directions that I must place the knuckles of my right hand between my teeth and proceed, shakily. My white gown billows in a mysterious indoor wind sweeping across the steps.
Of course, just as I seriously consider indulging in this ridiculousness, a voice calls up from below, "Mama, what are you doing? I can't find my other pink Espadrille. Can you look in my closet and bring it down?" Immediately, my gown ceases to billow and I straighten up and go look for the shoe.
I tell myself that other people experience these moments of odd disconnect, in which reason wrestles with recklessness. But I'm not sure. The ones who would admit to it have probably all jumped, which leaves me standing on the cliff alone.
Don't worry, though. I'm not taking the leap. I'm a victim of an overactive imagination, not insanity.