A few weekends ago Seth, Eliza and I needed a break from the smoke, from worrying about the fire that was crawling toward our house, from the pre-evacuation orders that seemed to be heading in our direction. So we left one fire-choked valley for another and went to a wedding where all we had to do was show up and celebrate.
After the ceremony, Seth and I were standing just off the dance floor when the band took a break. Eliza was falling asleep in a backpack on my back and I gently moved my hips to the familiar synthesizers of the hip hop coming from someone’s ipod.
“Does the name Sir Mixalot mean anything to you?” I asked Seth.
“No,” he said with a look that said even more. It was an I-had-far-better-things-to-do-with-my-youth-than-listen-to-cheesy-hip-hop kind of look and I knew it all too well.
“Did you own Thriller? The album that folded out with Michael Jackson dressed in white with that cat or tiger or whatever? Do you even know what Thriller is?” I asked.
“Yes, I know what Thriller is,” he said. “I just didn’t think it was that good.” [Read More]
In June, our 10-month-old daughter finished our last bag of frozen peaches. The same week, my husband and I finished our last jar of the tomato sauce we’d canned, bleary-eyed, last fall.
By then, our freezer seemed to have limitless space and our shelves felt bare. Last season’s food was gone, but the strawberries were coming in at the farm down the road. In a few weeks, the cherries would be ripe at the farm by the lake and the raspberries would be ready in our neighbor’s patch.
Slowly, our own garden would start to produce. In early September, we’ll pull tomatoes, onions, potatoes, carrots, and squash. We’ll pick basil. We’ll pick beans. We’ll freeze, we’ll dry, we’ll can. [Read More]
I got off the plane in Charlotte, N.C. near my parents’ house two weeks ago tired but happy to see them. Eliza had slept on two of our three flights that day and she was asleep again as my dad drove us down the eight-lane highway to his house.
Eliza woke to the humidity of the South in August, the cool of my parents’ house and an excited white dog at which she pointed and said, “Da?” We slept that night, a long journey complete. During the night I noticed I couldn’t get comfortable. My stomach was rolling and I couldn’t make it stop. By morning the rolling had turned into cramping and before I knew it I was in the middle of a bout with the stomach flu. As the morning went on and I got sicker and sicker, my 13-year-old sister realized that either she was going to have to take care of Eliza all day or she’d need to call in reinforcements. She opted for the latter and called my stepmother who kindly came home from work. [Read more]