February 2013

I love a book I can’t put down. The kind that has me sneaking away to read it because I’m expecting the unexpected and curious and excited and practically licking the pages. (What?) I recently had no such books waiting on my nightstand, so I asked my facebook friends to suggest page-turners and, as they so faithfully do, they came through in spades! (What does that really mean? In spades? Is it a saying about cards? Just checking.) (Don’t mind me, I’m a little delirious. My dear husband is working out of town this week and then this week decided to be extra weird to me and now Elsie Jane has the sickness and wow that’s a lot of vomiting and I am so tired you’re welcome for the run-on sentence.) Maybe we should both just go read stuff that we can’t stop reading… Have you read any of these? What page-turners aren’t […]


Just Write {74}

February 25, 2013

We were talking numbers with a realtor. The discussion back and forth between Ryan and this 26 years veteran of real estate left me dazed, staring off toward our piano, wondering if we’ll take it along when we move. They worked out the numbers. The only thing my brain would do in regard to numbers was try to plan how many plastic storage bins I want to buy this week because they’re on sale. I was imagining putting all the things in them that we don’t use every day, to pare down and clean off and give the house the appearance of tidy and minimal and open and big. After our realtor left with promises of putting the house on the market on March 1, I took the bins we already have and headed downstairs to go through our storage space. I organized the kids’ clothing and re-organized the boxes and bins already […]


The truth is, I was scared of her, and I will be again and again, but not right now. Today I’m remembering that we’re simply here to learn alongside each other. She’s my not even two-year-old daughter, and I have feared her. Maybe it’s not her, exactly, but rather, her fierce femaleness. Even the very best things, like femininity, can be terrifying and misunderstood–a girl, a lady, a woman–beautiful and complicated and strong, gentle, sweet and soft and then mean. I only know so far that my Elsie Jane will never stop surprising me, and that’s maybe what brings on the fear–the unknown. She goes from slightly shy to an uproar of out-going. She goes from falling asleep quickly and quietly for many nights to fighting it again night after night, like she forgot she was trying to win at something and now she’s going to take it to a whole new level. […]


Just Write {73}

February 18, 2013

  He’s humming a Christmas song and sometimes breaking out, off tune, with the words to the song instead of that low hum. I have no idea how a Christmas song came to mind, other than the fact that it’s winter in Minnesota. He’s banging around the kitchen; I hear the pots and pans and cabinet doors slamming. He called out and asked if I wanted eggs. Yes, of course. Our chickens make the best eggs. We got home late yesterday afternoon from Austin, Texas. We saw friends and drove around to many neighborhoods. We spent time downtown and on S Congress where we had great Mexican food and strolled through boutiques and shops. We got the kids some Zots at the big candy store. Do you remember Zots? Hard candy that starts fizzing from its insides when you bite it. The boys hopped around squealing and saying how sour it was when […]


Just Write {72}

February 11, 2013

A whisper, Asher! Get back up there! I tip-toe over to their doorway and look up at the top bunk. Asher opens one eye and quickly closes it again. Caught. Asher, don’t peek over the edge. Leave your brother alone so you don’t get in trouble. I half whisper half hiss this and then take a deep breath, trying not to get angry over bedtime stalling. There are much bigger things to need big breaths over, if I can only remember that. I sit down again and listen to the dog snore for a minute, waiting for any more stalling or messing around from the boys’ room. Elsie starts to call out. Mama, Mama, Mama… I hear one pacifier hit the wood floor and I wait to hear the other. Nothing. Quiet. Except for the snores from the dog, who has plopped herself down in the middle of the living room on Ryan’s […]


snow glory: a picture story

February 11, 2013

Just Write will be here later tonight, but I had to show you some pictures from the recent storm and the fun Miles, Asher and Elsie (and the dog) had with the fresh white fluff and balmy 30 degree temps yesterday. (By the way, Elsie Jane hates wearing mittens and refuses to keep them on. I have found ways to keep them on, but then she’s mad that she can’t get them to work to pick up snow for eating. Her stubborn solutions? She plops down face first on her stomach and sticks her face in the snow. nomnomnom. Not kidding. She would stay like that and grow frost-bitten if we didn’t constantly pick her up, and she doesn’t even care. Toddlers are weird.) Our dog, Tia Maria? She LOVES it when we shovel. Because she thinks it’s a game in which she is required to catch every bit of snow in her […]


Just Write {71}

February 4, 2013

The man on the news said the temperatures are going up, but for now we’re still hiding mostly inside, under blankets, never without slippers. Put on your mittens, where’s your hat, put your snow pants in your back pack. These bundles of joy are always bundled. Even the dog rushes back in like she’s being chased by backyard chickens, but she’s not because they are safe and warm in the garage coop. I’m pretty sure Elsie believes all chickens live in garages, even if we move them back and forth when the temperatures will let us. My friends from warmer states wonder how we can survive this, and I don’t really know. It’s just what we do. So much of what all of us everywhere do is just what we do. Until something changes, like the way spring sneaks in and reminds us what it feels like to get through. All this blanket […]