A year of us | day 225

A year of us | day 225

day 225

Yesterday was L’s last day of school. When the afternoon bell rang, Schools Out played over the loudspeakers. Who doesn’t need a crescendo from Alice Cooper to close out the year? Things that happened on the couch today: In a tousle over a book, the little one accidentally head-butted his brother in the nose, which wasn’t bleeding but was pink and slightly swollen. I checked the freezer for the soft ice pack reserved for injuries but with one upset and the other one close, I bypassed unpacking the jam jar popsicles I made earlier plus aging jar of rum and bags of nuts for a small bag of blueberries. I cleared their toys off the couch and made space for L to lie down for a few minutes. “Mom, there’s blueberry juice leaking all over the place.” So much for ice. How the little one salvaged a spilled blueberry in the process, I’ll never know, though it is a testament to his clever eye. Later on, while I ran a bath for him, the little one ran out of the bathroom, stood climbed onto the couch and peed. It was only a matter of time. Things that happened off the couch today: I made chocolate cherry ice cream, L and I ate leftover Chinese food for lunch, we emptied new sand into the sandbox, the little one found the cat litter scooper and licked it, I read them stories and showed the little one where the wild strawberries grow, cooked other leftovers for dinner, took out the compost when the little one finally went to bed.

A year of us | day 224

A year of us | day 224

day 224

Jacqueline Suskin’s book “Go Ahead & Like It” came it the mail. She’s a poet who lives in Los Angeles and started a performance project where she exchanges on-demand poetry on a manual typewriter in exchange for a donation. The little one and I couldn’t put the book down. I think he liked the photo collages and illustrations. I liked the essence of the book: a journal of lists containing things the author likes. The book celebrates life, as connection and inspiration, for Suskin and her readers. I left the book on the chair and when I returned, it was open with the bookmark removed.

A year of us | day 222

A year of us | day 222

day 222

Sunday (Summer Solstice/Father’s Day): coffee, rain, mediterranean quinoa salad, corn on the cob, vegetables, hummus, sandwiches and triple chocolate brownies, sun, picnic feast on the front porch, watermelon, then backyard bee stings, pregnant spider, short walk down the street, mud puddles, short bike ride down the street, baths, nap for the little one, movies for D and L, photos of smashed fruit.

A year of us | day 221

A year of us | day 221

day 221

The couch came with the house, sat on the porch until this morning. It was creamsicle before it turned sun bleached gold. Handholding, kid jumps, catnaps, balloons, birthdays, newspaper and novels, guitar playing, summer dinners. Seams torn. Cushions threadbare. He moved the couch onto the front lawn. Late afternoon, the little one and I sat outside on the couch facing the road, and watched the cat stroll by.

A year of us | day 219

A year of us | day 219

day 219

I heard this on the radio earlier: “Everything that can be said in music has now been said. I think we’re done.” The line comes from Portlandia’s Cat Nap episode. D and I watched it when aired on IFC a few years ago. You know the episode, the one where Carrie and Fred play musicians in a struggling band called The Nap. They need fans (no one showed up for their last show) and a gimmick to make them a household name. Enter Kevin the cat who jumps into the scene, gets a mic’d scratch post, and becomes the newly titled band’s focus, Cat nap. It was funny and cliché and filled with social commentary and so right and wrong all the same.

A year of us | day 218

A year of us | day 218

day 218

Too much of one thing, not enough of the other. I skimmed an article yesterday about how our society is in a perpetual state of distraction. Case in point, I read the salient points and went back to editing photos, jotting down ideas for a new story, checking social media, then back through the circle of edits. I felt lousy for my recent absence from daily writing assignments let alone attending to unfinished stories. Truth was, I simply couldn’t do it all. Not in one day or a string of days. I walked out to the garden and forgot about work and making work and mothering and being cared for and writing and not writing and making pictures and not making pictures and finding time to cook and gather all together for dinner. I noted the wild carrots, rambling dill, lettuce leaves, and bolting sorrel as I pulled weeds from the beds. The cat trailed close behind as I looped back around the house and went back inside.

A year of us | day 217

A year of us | day 217

day 217

They played basketball before school. I made morning coffee, cut fruit for breakfast, and checked the mailbox in the afternoon. The mail never came. I photographed a persimmon then cut it into wedges and simmered them with maple syrup, vanilla, and spices for syrup. The little one came into the kitchen and helped with dinner. He stood on the stool and tore lettuce leaves into thin threads. The watermelon stayed in the refrigerator, uncut.