Wednesday, April 23, 2008

The Twilight Zone

I'm not sure what's happening to me. I'm confused. I can't get my bearings. I feel like I've entered a strange new dimension of time and space....perhaps (dun, dun, duh) The Twilight Zone.

Last night, I found my son clearing the table and putting food away while my husband and I lazily watched the evening news. This morning, I went in his room to wake him up (son, not husband) and the light was on. I peeked my head in, but didn't see him in his bed or in the middle of the room. As I stepped in and closed the door to see what was really going on, he stepped out from behind his open closet door....fully dressed!

Only if you had witnessed the morning battles in my house over the simple act of getting clothes on, would you understand the magnitude of this event.

What could have possibly gotten in to him? Where was this coming from? Was he sick? Delusional? Possibly a high fever would cause this kind of behavior. Then all at once, I understood as he looked up at me, smiled his toothless six year old grin and said...

"Now can I have five bucks?"

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Best Days

This is a day I've been waiting for all my life. No, not my wedding...that's obviously well past. No, not the day my kids were born. Not my dream job offer, nor a big promotion at my current one. Not the day after Christmas sale or the first day of spring warm enough to put my kayak in the lake. This is different.

Tonight I came home from work tired (what's new). My husband was sweet enough to have made dinner and it was on the table waiting for me. As we finished dinner, my husband was done first and left the table to flip on Fox news and see how the Pennsylvania primary was going. I finished second and was so wiped out that I meandered into the living room and flopped down on the couch leaving my son and a mess on the table. My son finished last (again, what's new). But then it happened.

As I was lying on the couch, I could hear dishes clinking. I heard the fridge open and close several times. Ah, that's extra sweet, I thought to myself, my husband cooked AND he's cleaning up the kitchen. But I looked over and he was still sitting in his easy chair watching TV. I listened again. More clinking, more fridge opening.

I sat up and looked back over the arm of the couch (we have a great-room). There was my son...clearing the table, stacking dishes and putting food in the fridge. By the time he was done, he had cleared the whole table and done his best to wipe it off. I have never been filled with such motherly pride. (OK, well, maybe once or twice before). Now we're talkin'. This is the exact reason I had kids. (OK, exact might be a bit of a strong word, but you get my drift) Now if I can just teach him to completely work the washer and dryer...

Monday, April 21, 2008

The Double Standard

When you go on vacation, you often have time for reflection. For me, this is not always a good thing. I end up realizing things about myself that aren't pretty. For example...

Occasionally, various members of my family come for a visit. If it's a long visit, or we have a house full of guests, I find myself getting annoyed that they don't tidy up after themselves more. In reality it's probably just that we are cramming more people in to the same living space that I'm used to being in with only three people. But either way, as I push aside candy wrappers, newspapers, and dirty dishes, I find myself mumbling under my breath and wishing someone would have left enough space on the kitchen counter for me set my cereal bowl down and eat.

Here's the strange thing that I realized during my time of vacation introspection; When I am the guest (at least this holds true at my parents house) I am the slob. It must have something to do with knowing it's temporary or that I can be irresponsible with little consequence, but I'm appalled at the person I become. Sleeping in until 9:00am, unmade bed, clothes everywhere, belongings scattered throughout the house...I have no idea what gets into me.

I've come to realize there's no remedy for this situation so I just close the bedroom door and hope my Mom doesn't see the mess and tell me to clean my room. In the meantime, Mom is in the kitchen scowling because she doesn't have anyplace to set down her cereal bowl.

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Do Blonde's Have More Fun?

A few nights ago, my son and I sat together in our kitchen reaping the benefits of having a great-room and a fairly large TV. We were eating dinner and watching Fox News. Presidential candidates were yammering on about themselves and I was only half paying attention.

"Mom" my son says, "Hillary is sort of pretty."

"Yes, I suppose she is."

He turns from the TV and begins to stare intently at my head. I'm watching his eyes and for what seems like a full minute, he doesn't take them off my hair. I've been growing it out a bit on the sides and sometimes at night I tuck it behind my ears. He stared so long that, although it's really not, I was expecting him to make a comment about my hair being similar to Hillary's. Instead, he surprised me with...

"You would be prettier if you were blonde."

Thanks, son.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Blogging in Style

One of the places we stayed on our recent vacation was the historic Columbia Gorge Hotel. It was beautiful and I've always wanted to stay there. We got in late and it wasn't until the next morning that I actually realized that the hotel is most often touted as a "romantic getaway" kind of place. Then I understood why we got strange looks as we came with our 6 year old. But regardless, it was fantastic.

We stayed on the second floor and getting to our room required a short trip on an old, manually operated elevator. We were not even allowed to ride alone. A bellhop or hotel staff person is required to operate the thing. I guess there must be a trick to it. The bellhop was busy with another couple, so the front desk girl gave us our ride up. However, she moved the manual lever to stop the elevator a bit too soon, so we had to step up about 6 inches to exit. Because of the "cage" like door and lots of rattling noises, the ride up made me a little nervous, but, all in all, was pretty cool.

The rooms at the hotel are small, nicely restored, but, obviously older than if you were staying at the Hampton Inn. (Thus the description of "Historic" of this hotel). But the first thing that caught my eye as I entered our room was not the decor, nor the size of the room... It was the 40 inch LCD TV with a private computer attached to it. (Remember I said I left my laptop home?) My heart leaped! The TV functioned as both the computer screen and a regular television (I'm stating that fact for the non-technical among us who might not understand the coolness of it all) I'm thought I had died and gone to technology heaven.

Now the story turns to tragedy. I sat down at the computer and went to my favorite website, It was awesome, there was my blog in 40 inches of living color. I could feel my creative juices starting to bubble up. But as he looked at the huge screen from across the room, the pastor realized he had not caught up on my blog in awhile and decided he needed to take a look at what I might have said about him lately. He's a slow reader. By the time he was finished, my son was getting terribly bored. Not a lot for a kid to do in a small hotel room. To appease him, I had to pull up the Spongebob Squarepants website and let him play some kiddie games online. And so the tragedy ends...I never got to actually write a blog post on the dream machine. Next time I think I'll just smuggle my laptop in.

Saturday, April 05, 2008

Depression Hurts

Coming home from vacation can be depressing. The fun is done. The laundry is waiting. There's no escaping's back to real life. I'm not sure why, but yesterday as we drove the last leg of our trip to my brother's house, I felt compelled to check the weather back home on my Blackberry. It's an occupational hazard of being a gadget junkie and computer nerd. Anyway, it wasn't a smart idea. While we've been gone enjoying spring along the Oregon coast, our house and yard were covered with a fresh foot of snow, with more predicted for the next couple days. (This is in addition to the two and a half feet that is still on the ground) The report is that it looks more like winter now, than when we left.

In all honesty, I'm not positive I can cope with this. I'm not sure if you remember, but it was back in early December that I posted "Let it Snow". It has pretty much looked like that (and worse) since that time. I'm trying to figure out away out of it, but one way or another, I have to go home tomorrow. To make matters worse and probably just to rub a little salt in my wounds, my brother mowed his lawn this morning. (I'm possibly starting to regret some of the torture I imposed on him when we were kids....nah, it was still worth it).


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