Monday, July 30, 2012

leaps of faith

Give me a second here to cover some background.  These photos are from when Beach had just turned 4, she didn't start gymnastics until she was 6 & a half, this was a tiny preschool gym and splash class at a rec center half the lesson was gymnastics and half was swim. 
Sure you can wear your pj's to gym,
it's not like we are ever going to do this sport seriously.
Now, tiny gymnastics ninja is legally blind in one eye.  She has no depth perception & no peripheral perception in either eye.

Can you spot her?
No big deal....unless you are stupid enough to put her in soccer or to chest pass her a basketball or want her to do something really strange like a squat-on the low-bar jump to high-bar but when does anyone need to do something like that. Oh, really?  Turns out you need to do just that in a level 5 Bar Routine.  And there was a bit of trouble she could squat-on and she could jump but she couldn't seem to do both together. I would say we are over the hump now and she is safely sailing from one bar to another, you miss some, you make some, but overall it is better if I'm not watching & gasping.
Not quite strong enough & her arms were too short
& her head too big to do a back-bend (lol)
Today I happened to accidentally see Bars.  There was Beach standing on top of a large block wedged under the low-bar creating a jumping platform. 
Too scared to do vault
Logic says: a platform is way easier to jump from than a bar.  And it is about 5 inches closer (?) so easier, right?  Unless you're Beach who jumps based on muscle memory, faith that the bar is where it was last time she jumped and made it.  
The different placement led to a jump that resembled a flying squirrel jumping into a jet engine; sprawled, tentative, and insane.  It was so apparent that she could not judge the distance the mom beside me gasped saying watching that pitched her stomach like a roller-coaster.  Yeah, it wasn't much better for me. 

But she scared the crap out of this guy when she
actually jumped from low-bar to high-bar

The coach managed, "That was closer." without laughing at the even more blind failed second attempt.  But within a few tries she was grabbing the high-bar with the rest of them.
It is good for me to be reminded how much this sport gives back to her.  It is so easy for me to see all her hard work and to forget that it truly goes both ways. 

Sunday, July 29, 2012

swing along

That is BC home for the weekend,
climbing a tree with a rope.
Awhile back he cut down the tree our beloved rope swing was on.  Relocation was a tricky matter.  We needed a lot of space and a strong branch and although we have a tone of trees on the property they aren't very strong.  We finally found a spot on the other side of the yard. 
He trimmed the tree taking dead weight off the selected branch and making sure there was plenty of room. For good measure BC jumped on for a safety check.
And let her go!
That is one happy kid.

egg plant?

Friday, July 27, 2012

i think you're doing it wrong

It was a dark and stormy night.  
Well, actually it didn't rain until this morning but it was dark and it was night, 2 AM to be exact.  I found myself awaken by Little Dog downstairs barking, sighing loudly and letting out a whine.  Ten minutes later her little nails moving around on the hardwood click, click, click.  And another 10 minutes goes by she barks again. 

Logic says, if someone was breaking into the house I would have heard them.  It also says, the Big Dog would be barking too.  

It's a Ghost, Anti Logic whispers

What?!?! That is stupid! So I laugh and call the dog upstairs.  Click, click, click...she throws herself down on the top step, sighs, groans, and falls asleep. 

Perhaps she noticed there is a snake loose in the house, Logic offers. The glow in the dark scorpion has never been found either...

But before I fall back asleep she lets out a low growl then a soft bark, it echos down the stairs. I sit up and listen.  Nothing. 

Logic says, go back to sleep.  Beat dog in the morning. 

Good plan. 

3 AM I am awaken by Little Dog's nails clipping down the stairs followed by the a series of whiny-growl-barks, she is multitasking her vocal set. 

Damn, I think.  Logic? nothing. But instead of beating her you could just trim her nails, oh-and remember we do have that urn in the house. 

How the hell is reminding me we have a burnt up dead body in the house helpful?!?!?!

>Logic shrugs<  

Anti Logic offers in a ghostly voice, "Doooggg sees." 

SHIT! What the hell does that mean? 

Logic says, oh I got this one. Don't you remember that episode of Ghost Hunters when they took their dog with them and they caught on tape the ghost saying, "Dooooggg sees."

Maybe, I say, but what I remember most is how cute Grant was.

Well, Logic says, maybe thinking about Grant instead of the burnt up dead body you keep in the cupboard, your dog barking at ghosts, and the ax murderer in the laundry room, would help you sleep.

Yeah, so one question: When exactly did the ax murderer show up?!?!

Thursday, July 26, 2012

joy and apologies on a cookie sheet

So I made a major mistake on Wednesday.  While holding down the fort alone I totally left my in-laws hanging.  Thinking I was dropping them off their grandson for a nice outing to the Natural History Museum they waited all morning for us but we never showed up.  "Wow," BC had gasped over the phone as I explained what I had done, "That is really unlike you.  Are you feeling okay?"  I thought I was... Hours had passed before I realized what I done and sadly it was a little late for I'm sorry, I screwed up.

I will be seeing them tonight and along with a few items to return to them I have included the cookies my sweet father in-law raved about hoping that the grudge & injury is weaker than the power of a great batch of cookies!

Greek Yogurt Cookies
1 1/4 cup flour
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 baking soda
7 Tbsp butter
1/4 cup white sugar
1/4 cup light brown sugar
1 large egg
1 tsp vanilla
3 Tbsp Greek yogurt (you can use flavored yogurts, we love raspberry!)
1 cup chocolate chips 

Preheat the over to 350.  Whisk together the flour, salt, and baking soda.  Beat the butter and sugars with a mixer on med for about 3-5 minutes.  Beat in the egg, yogurt, and vanilla.  Reduce speed to low adding the flour mixture slowly.  Beat until just combined.  Add chocolate chips by hand mixing.  Set the dough in the freezer for 10 minutes.  Using a spoon drop the dough onto a greased cookie sheet.  Bake for 12-14 minutes.

little miss manners

"Mom, I have question: is it more polite to warn people that a snake is loose somewhere in the house or to just not say anything to them and hope they find it for us all by themselves?"

Monday, July 23, 2012

it's all you Boo

Beach the snake charmer catches the snake no sweat no problem, but her brother gets bit by it.
She's probably a hard little sister to have.

safety in numbers

At 5 am BC and I are laughing as we pull into the roofing yard.  Through the open window of little red the laughter drifts to the Boss securing the trailer hitch, double checking the lights for the trip up the interstate.  He looks up, “You two having fun?” He asks, it is less a question and more of a compliment from one old marry guy to another: they still like each other enough to be laughing at 5 am.  Ten years ago, right at the time we hooked up, BC walked away from roofing.  Ten years ago.  In fact, today would be our anniversary if we had one... 
And just like that I am alone in the driving beneath the mixed up clouds of early morning.  This is also the anniversary of what would have been the last week of my sister’s life.  How many years ago, 5 or 6, I don’t have any idea any more.  What I do know is who I am now is not who I used to be. 
BC laughs at me every time he busts me watching episodes of Ghost Hunters.  “Still looking for religion?” He teases.  No, looking for proof of others like me, people who are not what they once were.  I am a residual haunting of my own life.  It’s not all bad in fact mostly I am probably a better personal than the original, which was occasionally too prideful to be of much good to anyone. 
I often feel like there is a door somewhere that I will stumble upon.  It will open and set me loose on society again.  I used to tell people, ‘I feel like I just stepped through a door and things are so much clearer now.”   But I now understand there are no doors only windows.  Occasionally I manage to clean one well enough to push my nose against it and feel ‘out’, moments on a trail alone wrapped in the smell of pine needles, moments surrounded by my best friends watching the children play, moments when I am running…I am almost there.  I am almost me. 
It's not scary.  And I want my friends to understand how much I must love to be with them because everyday I fight the urge to vanish, to pull the plug on all things social.  I long to walk away from the work of trying to be, to remember to do and say all the things I would do and say.  I have friends who fight shyness: I am not shy, I am an incredibly social animal.  That is the paradigm here, I crave my friends and yet it exhausts me.  Not them, me, I exhaust me.  I constantly battle the part of me that tells myself I'm not really wanted there with them, that I am somewhat of an inferior friend, a last choice or a mercy invite.  The old me would not have given a fuck.  The voices would still whisper but whether it was true or not, the old me at the first signs of doubt would have walked away, bridges burning.  That was a long time ago.  I have learned how to hold on to things that matter.   Arson is now a last resort not a first responder.
There is nothing bad here in admitting how hard I find life past my nose.  This isn’t disease or defect and my sister’s death was only the last passage here.  I’m not describing depression, I am describing adulthood.  I am so at peace that I am tired.  I found happiness and safety and it makes me want to rest here just a moment longer.  And that make me not who I used to be.  I have enough time, experience, and scars behind me to know that the past builds the future.  
Yes, part of me wants to be left alone because that part knows how dangerous and painful life is, that part knows it doesn’t end well.  That part is settled and not looking for anything more than being alive.  The other part of me is mischievous.  It loves every little thing, the clouds at dawn, the sound my tires make driving over the train tracks, the heat of a dusty summer trail.  Nothing escapes its notice and nothing is too small of a pleasure or oddity to be enjoyed.  I suppose that is the advantage of being your own passenger you don’t miss any of the beautiful scenery going by.  Life is sweet and without loss I would have never known that.  There is a stance in the BNL song Break Your Heart which makes total sense to me, not about love but about life:

And if I always seem distracted
Like my minds somewhere else
That's because it's true, yes it's true
it's this stupid pride that makes me feel
Like I have to follow through
Even half-assedly, loving you
 Happy Anniversary, to my second chance self & life. 
And to my past, wishing you well from paradise found under glass.  

Sunday, July 22, 2012

there is a reason I have a whole 'Label' for this sort of shit

Nothing to see here just a typical day on 10th West.  As the summer sun slowly slips away, the air cools, & the neighbors join together in their front yards for some emergency turtle surgery. 
Really, not what you all do?  Well, we do because when a neighbor accidentally hooks a turtle we believe in helping out. Wait, are those my surgical tools you are using BC?!?! Gross.
The hook.
Sponge bath & a free ride back to the river.
And no, he is not going to stick his head out for us.

farmers market this way

Wheeler Historic Farm
BC is going out on a long job that will take him away from home more often than we are used to.  So between chores & honey-do's we've been taking simple family time while we can...
Lunch Oh-my!
Panning for pennies
...I have no idea
A bubble blowing pig
~The End~