Birthday Request

Dear Family,

I'll admit, I'm not always the best with birthdays. Even when my family makes me the nicest birthday cards ever. I'm just so tired of children crying and requiring feeding after I cook expensive, delicious food for them. And I don't want to get any older. Plus, I'm super tired of Anything Difficult. Plus, on top of everything else, I got my braces installed this week, which means my mouth hurts AND I get to eat everything pureed (and let me tell you, pureed sauerkraut and kale and chicken is Not Good).

Dietary Tweak #7,562, plus Additional Reading

Dear Family,

“Men dig their graves with their own teeth and die by those fated instruments more than the weapons of their enemies.”

—Sixteenth-century British naturalist and physician Thomas Moffett

——

Several of you have reached out to express Concern relating to the recent health issues in our family; thanks for the virtual hugs! A current update: for the past two weeks, Eliza’s been feeling/behaving MUCH better.

So while Jeff and I are feeling a bit floaty and prone to aftershock-like stress attacks that are different for each of us, the current general trend is way up.

Thriving Where It Can

“Life thrives where it can.”
--from the interpretive movie at the Arches Visitor Center

——

Good evening from Moab!

Moab and How We Got Here (Part 2)

A couple months ago, I was trying to bring Eliza and Ivy back from the campground restrooms when I noticed a man watching us. “Just to let you know," he said, "my daughters are 18 and 22, and it doesn't get easier!"

“Great, thanks!” I said. “Good to know!” 

Moab and How We Got Here (Part 1)

Dear Family

Thanks very much for your sentiments of support. These were much appreciated this morning, when I woke up feeling like I’d been rammed by a truck while Ivy and Eliza unconcernedly began whining for breakfast.

Eliza is still whining now, but it is bedtime and I am attempting to distract myself by writing, with the hope that she will please lord FALL ASLEEP REALLY FREAKING SOON. Amen.

——

The Story of Tonight

In case you were thinking that Ivy is just too precious and cute for words, I have a story for you. After this story, maybe one of you can take her home with you. Maybe you can take Eliza, too!

It started after dinner, when Eliza was crying and whining and complaining and feeling generally rotten and making sure that everyone around her knew it. As her parent, it takes a certain amount of fortitude not to succumb during these frequent bouts of Utter Unpleasantness, and I’ve found that it’s best to Keep Busy. So I was clearing the table.

Grow So Fast

Ivy Lyn, age 2.5, is a very busy lady. When there’s a lot of activity around her, she’s very self-contained and invents dozens of little games. But here’s what happens if I try to sit down and read a book in her presence for, say, five minutes.

“Mama!”

“Yes, baby?”

“I need to pee really bad!”

I get up, get the potty, sit back down.

“I’m done!”

I get up, wipe Ivy’s bottom, empty the potty, and sit back down.

“Mama, I want to ride my balance bike!”

“Great Idea! Can you get your helmet, and I’ll put it on for you?”

“No, I can’t. It inside, high up.”

Unschooling Is My Job

(originally published in 2002) by Ruthe Friedner Matilsky

It isn’t easy being me.

For the last several weeks I have been telling people that I must be doing something wrong because “It was supposed to get easier.” Two of my five kids are out of the house, everyone’s way out of diapers, we sleep through the night and they all know how to read. So why am I so frazzled?

What I’m starting to understand is that I’m a victim of my own rhetoric, insecurity, and lack of respect for anything that remotely resembles “women’s work,” especially when I’m the one who’s doing it.

Product Reviews for a Grand Adventure!

Dear Family,

“We have the best government that money can buy.”
- Mark Twain (maybe)

Recent events leave me depressed, grasping for hope, and speechless. Well, actually, I’m as full of opinions as every single person on Facebook, but in the interest of not Spouting them, I shall refrain from political discussion. Mostly. At least for today.

Into The Desert

Dear Family,

“When preparing to travel, lay out all your clothes and all your money. Then take half the clothes and twice the money.” -– Susan Heller

——

It is certainly a legitimate option, when faced with health issues and challenging life circumstances, to choose low-key/ soothingly boring action steps such as making "lifestyle changes”, drinking less coffee, or finding reliable sources for cheap recreational drugs.

However, as you may know, by the time this past spring rolled around, my life was kind of resembling one non-stop action step.

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