and I got nuthin’. Scrolling through my Vimeo account for a fun little movie and – Bingo! Found one. It’s from 2012 and the quality is crap ’cause I probably had a crap camera, this is also my old ugly kitchen, Sharla can have fun laughing at my New Yawk accent and then there is a cat involved. So how can this not be fun? Make sure your speakers are on…
someone. I’m reading ‘Where the Past Begins’ by Amy Tan. She writes at length about her use of metaphors – how she just thinks that way and therefore writes that way. And it reminded me instantly of my friend Jennifer who is a master of metaphor. I don’t always get them, to be honest, but she writes musically and poetically, in metaphors. I am always in awe of her talent. And again this morning, a series in the Washington Post about raising boys reminded me of her. She is a marriage and family therapist focusing on adolescents. She is also the parent of an adolescent boy. I thought “I should send a link to this to Jen” but then I thought – she knows all this already.
Also in the Post this morning a book review, of “How to be Alone” by Lane Moore. The review was written by Rachel Rosenblit and a particular observation in that review reminded me of me – “In each case, all roads lead back to the family she didn’t have — and the feeling that behind every door but hers were the luckiest people in the world.”
While my brother has spent his life looking for a family, even marrying into them, several times, in his search. Somewhere along the line I decided ‘family’ was not going to happen for me. I have no concept of what ‘family’ is and, deep soul searching has brought me to the place where I can honestly say, I don’t want or need one, and unlike my brother, I have never gone in search for one.
But that quote, “In each case, all roads lead back to the family she didn’t have — and the feeling that behind every door but hers were the luckiest people in the world.” – that reminded me of a time when I felt exactly the same way – exactly.
I offer this as an example. Written sometime in the mid 1960’s, when I was a teenager…
I knock at the door,
But there is no answer.
I jiggle the door knob,
But it won’t turn.
The door is locked tight.
I run round to the window
And peek in.
There are people sitting in front of the fire
They are warm and laughing,
I knock at the window,
“I’m cold. Please let me in.”
But they don’t hear me.
“Please, please let me in.”
The dog barks.
But still they don’t look up.
I go back to the door,
I pound and pound
“Let me in, I’m cold
Won’t someone let me in,
© Grace St. Clair
Perhaps not bouncing exactly. Last night my back went south in a most interesting way, which for some reason I found hilarious. I had been sitting at the dining table reading and when I stood up I couldn’t move my legs. It was funny. My brain was telling my legs to move and my legs weren’t listening. My left foot was slightly crossed over and to the front of my right foot and I couldn’t move! I just stood there and laughed. I kept trying to move my legs and couldn’t do it. I finally got my feet parallel and pointing forward but I still couldn’t move, couldn’t walk. Some more giggling. I do not know why this struck me as funny but it did. Which just goes to show that no matter how bad your day is going there is always something to laugh at.
Other than that – nothing going on in my world. I’ve been very good this year about not saying anything negative about the season or folks who decorate. I don’t ‘decorate’ for any reason or season but I often admire other’s efforts.
Lin does this whole mini village thing under her tree and it is always a treat because she does it with a sense of humor. She has a pope figurine and we ‘Lin’s Christmas Village’ fans look forward to seeing what the pope has got up to each year. She has promised some new additions this year including a Sister Jean figure a friend sent her (Lin is from Chicago and her daughter graduated from Loyola.) Unfortunately I can’t link to her blog and share the fun because her blog is invitation only.
I thought Ann had a nifty decorating idea, instead of stringing lights on the outside of her house she uses flood light projectors to do the job – so much safer than climbing on roofs and so fun – at least I think so.
The sun is actually shining today – it’s been raining for 3 days. Actually it has been raining for a year. So far this year we have had 64.22 inches of rain – the rainiest year ever since they began keeping records. The previous record was in 1889 with 61.33 inches of rain in a year. And it’s not over – more rain coming at the end of this week. Considering that I live 6 miles from the White House, a year of seemingly constant rain and dreary days is just adding insult to injury.
I’m a happy camper. The new kitchen was finished mid-October and, given the constraints of space and budget, it is perfect. Every day it makes me smile. The bathroom was finished last week, the 2 minor hiccups were resolved quickly, and given the constraints of space and budget, it is perfect. And every day it makes me smile.
After months and months of waffling I finally bought a new, desperately needed mattress, online, for an amazingly good price, and dare I say it, the mattress is a dream. I’ve never slept so well in my life. And every day it makes me smile.
My Christmas cards this year turned out well. I’ve always wanted to feature at least one of the cats and I finally managed that – and I hope that it made everyone who received it smile.
So all-in-all my year is drawing to a close with a whole of smiling. And it’s not just the material things that make me a happy camper with an idiot smile, it is all the lovely people in my life. The folks I cherish who I have had the privilege of helping out in the small ways I could. The folks I cherish who were kind to me. The folks I cherish because I know I can count on them to lift me up when down is the only direction I see.
I love you all. And every day you make me smile.
I decided to do a vlog today. I used an effect called colored pencil to disguise myself. I’m blinking because my eyes are irritated and scratchy due to lack of sleep. Tuesday night I didn’t get to sleep until Wednesday night – so like I was awake from Tuesday morning until Wednesday night. I’m also lisping and drooling because of these super expensive dentures that will never be right because my mouth/gums/jaw are peculiar…So pardon the blinking, the drooling and the lisping…
Despite the fact that I clean every day and vacuum every day, on Sunday morning we do a coordinated major cleaning. I dust, wash floors, and do the daily everyday cleaning all in one fell swoop and my husband does a deep vacuum cleaning – moves the furniture etc and that can take him an hour – our apartment is only 1116 square feet.
I used to get up super early on Monday morning to do laundry (I don’t have my own washer/dryer. We have two community laundry rooms on every floor) but now I have found that Sunday afternoons the laundry rooms are pretty much empty so since I am doing chores almost all day Sunday I figured that I might as well do laundry too and then be able to sleep later on Monday morning if I wanted to.
Which leaves Monday with no obligations, aside from the daily cooking, cleaning, bed fluffing. No additional chores. I’ve been on this new schedule for about a month now and I’m still getting used to having a free day.
Anxiety levels have been high for the past week, what with the bath reno which seems to have not gone as smoothly as the kitchen reno 2 months ago. It was a very simple job that has had some minor screw-ups. Plus all the pissant amounts of money I have spent trying to adapt the new bathroom to our use, and they have mounted to a considerable amount of money as each adaption did or didn’t work out and another had to be found – so $12.99 here and $14.95 there piled up and piled up.
Why weren’t all these adaptations addressed by the reno company? Because they are out of the reno’s control. This is an old building and there is only so much they can do given the infrastructure. They can’t move the plumbing or the walls. I had a niche put in to hold soap, shampoo etc, instead of those corner shelf thingies that stick out into the shower space, unfortunately the niche could be no deeper than 2.5 inches – not deep enough for a conventional soap dish, which I had already bought. So adapt – I bought 2 different ‘stick on’ soap dishes. Then my body wash bottle didn’t fit either so I bought small flip top plastic bottles to transfer the body wash into – that’s fine except I only needed one and they only come in multi-packs and while not super expensive I would have preferred to buy just one. Who knows there is probably a store where I could have bought just one but I have no access to brick-and-mortar stores. The list goes on – bought things I thought I needed and/or would work and then they didn’t. Again, pissant amounts of money but…
And then – getting old is not for sissies – the kitchen and bathroom reno were in service to our diminishing physical abilities – most especially the bathroom. Both my husband and I have extreme balance issues and he has the added problem of hand tremors and numb hands and feet (yes, we know the diagnosis, no, there is no cure, yes, there is medication which helps only slightly, and yes, it is degenerative and will only get worse and worse, and no, it is NOT Parkinsons.)
Several incidences over the past months led us to rearranging the furniture in the main living area to better accommodate his needs. Quite frankly I think the living area now looks like crap but I am trying to make it work which meant more damn shopping for more adaptive doo-dads right down to an extension cord so I could move the lamp. Once again, old building, not enough electrical outlets.
So here I am whining and whinging over first world problems. Thankfully we have the wherewithal to afford these adaptations. Truly, truly I am thankful for that. We’ve worked hard to accumulate that wherewithal, no one gave it to us, but again thankful that we could work and accumulate it.
So – a quiet Monday, with me counting my blessings.