Thursday, April 29, 2010

This was a day, not THAT day, but . . a day

Some days. Some days. Some days defy description
understanding.Some days scream for a re-wind button, or better yet, delete, or at the very least a re-booting.

One day you'll look back on a day like one of those days and you'll frown, you'll shudder, and you'll be thinking thank goodness there weren't more like that in the mix.

Some days: Finding Her Here*
I am becoming the woman I've wanted,
grey at the temples,
soft body, delighted,
cracked up by life
with a laugh that's known bitter
but, past it, got better,
knows she's a survivor--
that whatever comes,
she can outlast it.
I am becoming a deep
weathered basket.

I am becoming the woman I've longed for,
the motherly lover
with arms strong and tender,
the growing up daughter
who blushes surprises,
I am becoming full moons
and sunrises.

I find her becoming
this woman I've wanted,
who knows she'll encompass,
who knows she's sufficient,
knows where she's going
and travels with passion.
Who remembers she's precious,
but knows she's not scarce---
who knows she is plenty,
plenty to share.

is just what is needed to shake the crap of some days, renewing for the next, hoping, expecting better. Some days are indeed better and some others are simply, the best.

*Jayne Relaford Brown

Thursday, April 22, 2010

A. F. D*

The current (or previous?) slogan for the Chicago Park District is, "come out and play." The warmer weather has afforded Diva dog the opportunity to embrace the slogan. We live somewhat near one of Chicago's impressive parks. On the warmest of the recent warm days, Dani took Diva (Diamond) to the park for change of pace.

In addition to the squirrels and small birds she chases on her usual walks, she has been able to scamper after large birds (ducks, geese of some variety) and hope for a second that she might catch them. In the beginning she was confused that they didn't fly away, they escaped into . . . water. This, I think, was doubly troubling.

I haven't been to the park with Diamond yet. I usually ride my bike to (and around) the park (remind me to tell you about my mishap near the waterfall area footpath). Diamond is usually driven to the park as she isn't the most focused or direct route walker, as a general rule of thumb. One day, when it is very much warmer, I'll walk her there and perhaps then, there will be photos of her with the big birds. Or maybe just her. And the big birds.

*A.F.D--all fall down, in reference to one recent adventure of mine. Remind me to tell you all about it.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Let's Hear It For The Boys

My Our boys are not outside cats. And as they live theirs lives indoors, they very much welcome the warmer weather bringing open windows. As you know, they both adore sitting upon the sill, soaking up the sun.

Of the two, Buttah is more interested in investigating the outside, apparently still remembering is
outside romps. He scampers to either door at nearly every entry or exit by any of the human occupants. We don't use the back door all that often, but when we, or rather I do, I must be extra vigilant toward keeping him away as the back door gains him instant access to the world as access through the court-yard out back. He got by me once, be he wasn't swift enough to escape my clasp.

Some nights ago I dreamt that he had escaped via the back door. He was out and down the steps in a flash, which further proves that it was a dream. Buttah is . . . not quick. I was shaken for several minutes as he'd gotten out of sight. I called and called into the open air. There wasn't any sign of him or any tingle of his jingling tags.

Horrified, I scrambled down the stairs, scanning the area searching for a ball of orange. Growing more and more anxious as the seconds turned into minutes which felt like hours, I began to think about which pic of him would be best to post on a "LOST" poster. My heart begins to race as I see . . . orange. Around the corner ambles a ball of orange fur, excited but not wanting to scare him away, I softly call him toward me. Closer and closer and then I see, it isn't Buttah. It is another orange cat which from a distance resembles my our boy. This fella appears friendly enough and he continues to advance toward me. I wait so that I can check him for tags, wondering if I should come inside to grab any one of 3 carriers. Deciding against leaving, the alien orange is nearly at my feet.

Just as I bend to make friends with him, out from the shadows I hadn't realized existed popped Buttah, mewling his trademark rolling, nasally purrs. He looks up as if to say, "look what I found, can we keep him?"

At which point I wake up, get up to re-check the doors, windows, and the number of cats in the apartment. Ahhh, only two. . . both looking to barrel through the bedroom door clamoring for breakfast in just another hour. Buttah follows me back to bed, I let him hang with me for that next hour.

The cat I
didn't want has become the cat I can't imagine a day without.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010


baby greens with grilled chicken, red and green sliced apples, dried cranberries, candied walnuts and blue cheese perfectly complimented by sweet onion dijon dressing

Sounds delicious. Trust me, it is. Or rather, was.

This is another round of randomness because I just can't seem to wrap my head around much of anything else (not work related). Bummer, yes . . . I know.

1. Are you the sort to wear white elegantly, with ease and grace? No, me either. Today, hi-ever, I've chosen to wear a white shirt. Don't fear, I didn't get any of that sween onion dijon dressing on my white shirt. Hi-ever(2) it is only a $3.00 t-shirt (relax, I'm wearing a jacket too) so I wouldn't be too upset if I didn't happen to dribble, as is my usual custom.

2. So have you seen the ads for KFC's new double-down? Looks and sounds positively . . . typical. I know I won't be trying it, how about you?

3. I don't know if I've mentioned this before, likely not, but I stopped wearing . . . oh, never-mind.

4. And speaking of food, I had occasion to expand my sushi experience. I couldn't tell you what the dishes were called, but they were all delicious. I suppose next time I'll inquire as to what was ordered.

5. My skin is responding positively (for the most part) to my treatments. I have made an executive decision to stay away from acidic foods and beverages, especially tomato sauce / paste based products. Which bugged the bejeebus out of me when daughter had the little place all lit with lovely bar b que-y aromas, via some new sauce she was trying out. Hmpf.

6. My mom told me a while back that she thought I'd become more out-spoken in recent months. I'm still mulling that over.

7. We are on tap to have some fairly decent weather over the next few days and I'm going to try to be out enjoying same, as much as possible. I have the yard yet to tackle for (really) the first time this season / year.

8. I don't need an alarm clock to wake up on time in the mornings (2 cats and a dog clamoring for breakfast take care of that well enough) but I am (recently) needed something to get me up. Working on that, whatever that is.

9. I am 5 pages from being finished with my latest read. 525 pages down, 5 to go. I've had this book checked out of the library long enough to elicit multiple terse e-mails from them. Yikes!!

10. I'm betwixt and between deciding among two events scheduled for May 1st. Technically, both are possible, but not realistic to think both can be attended in well enough spirit to fully enjoy. Coin tossing time. Maybe.

Thursday, April 08, 2010

Chicago Spring. Really? Yep.

Spring is nearly twenty days gone but blustery winter is reluctant to let us go. Folks talk long and hard about the long and hard winters we suffer here in the city of big shoulders and rightly so. But even more conversation worthy are the unpredictable and spirit zapping springs.
Snow in April is probably more rare in actuality than it seems. But I, for one, always expect a kind of last burst of winter, that is to say very cold blustery days and even sometimes, snow. It seems as though we are in the midst of that right now. Cold, under 40 degrees, hat, coat, not quite gloves, cold start to the day today. Blustery winds, some rain and perhaps even a spot of snow. Ahhh, Spring.
Hopefully this burst will be short-lived. The forecast is for sun and upper 60 / lower 70 degree temps for Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. It remains to be seen if the winter burst we are experiencing now is the last for this Spring. I, for one, hope that is the case.
p.s. My second article was published today. Thanks to Lori for the opportunity and for all the support, especially over the last couple days. It is great fun to not only write but also to be in the company of some pretty awesome folks.

Tuesday, April 06, 2010

Random Umbrealla Style

How big is your umbrella? Does it cover just you or is there room for two? Three? Is it colorful? Does it make a statement? Or is it non-descript? Basic black, utilitarian? Are you always sorry you forgot it, or always please you remembered? How many have you lost to high winds? Shoddy construction? Have you ever pretended to be Gene Kelly (or GK-like) and sung in the rain? Do you follow the suggestion to leave your umbrella open to dry? Do you do a slicker / umbrella combo? Just the slicker? or just the umbrella? How many umbrellas do you have? One in the car (or each vehicle)? One at work? Several at home? Do you think you have umbrella karma? Is it good? Bad? Do you believe that superstition about opening an umbrella indoors? Is an umbrella something you give absolutely no thought to until you need one? Have you ever bought an umbrella based on the color of your coat? shoes? car? horse? cat? dog? snake? bird? Or anything? Have you ever seen someone carrying an umbrella you thought was totally wrong for them? Have you heard this: "If April showers bring May flowers, what doe May flowers bring?" Pilgrims. Big Guffaw? or Big Snooze?

image snagged from here

Sunday, April 04, 2010

Generational, Relations

My childhood was rife with family gatherings. All family, aunts, uncles, and cousins would descend for most every holiday to the home of the matriarch, Big Mama. My mother socialized with the younger third of her siblings and we in turn socialized with their children. There are hundreds of photos of all of us crowded in my grandmother's kitchen, living room, or yard, in celebratory unison. We weren't as close as the photos would have you believe. That fact that we, for the most part, dispersed after Big Mama's death, bears witness to that fact.

My children were rarely privy to the extended family celebrations and relationships I experienced growing up. There were some, prior to Big Mama's death (one month after Easter 1989) and a handful after, but mostly, gatherings meant us (and now and again, a trip to visit their dad's family). Sometimes (oft times) I think that is a good thing, but sometimes I can see how they missed (perhaps a vital) aspect of growing up.
Having Michael back in residence and spurred a lot of memories and certainly much conversation. I've been thinking how different things would have been had things been different.

But, then I think what the hell, let's just enjoy what is to the best of our ability; celebrate the moments of our lives, whenever. Whatever.