August 19, 2004

I wish it would rain.  I miss the rain so much.  I could do a rain spell (I'm really good at it), but I need to find a time when fewer people would be inconvenienced.  It hasn't rained since April.  I love the rain. I wish it would rain.

So Summer is now half over.  It went so quickly.  We've been in the house for almost 5 months now.  That doesn't seem possible.  The Winter will soon come and then I'm going to seriously be homebound because Diva just does NOT drive in the ice and snow and trust me, we get that up here.  Life changes so quickly.  I think this is about the longest it has remained somewhat consistent.  Eric has been at his job, which he loves, for almost a month.  He is well respected and does good work for them.  We STILL haven't been paid for the work he did for the other company, but he's determined to get the money he is owed.  Time is slipping by and life is happening around me.  I need to work harder to be plugged into it.

It's so quiet right now.  Dylan got a new game from Gamefly yesterday ( and he's upstairs playing quietly, just as I imagined.  It's so quiet.  I even have the TV on watching bad Port Charles and it's STILL so quiet.  I love it.

Nathan is still in the honeymoon phase with school, but to an extreme not reached by any of my other kids.  He's completely in love with school and the bus and everything about it.  Again yesterday, he got off the bus proclaiming his love for his bus driver and for school. I did find out that his friend, Chester, is a rabbit, but he does have human friends as well.  He's very, very happy.  Tonight is open house at his school and I'm sure he will be proud to show us everything.

Dylan was supposed to have his first appointment with his home school teacher yesterday, but Eric was stuck in gridlocked traffic far away due to an accident and he couldn't get back here in time.  The phone line are down to the school due to a construction mishap, so I had to call the district office and have them get a message to her.  This one vehicle thing really sucks sometimes, but we've always been a one vehicle family, so the sucking isn't anything new.  It's usually not a factor, but once in a while, it rears it's pointed little head and gives us a jab.  I expect I'll get a phone call from her today.

My house is in dire need of attention and Eric has been very sweet not to mention anything about how dilapidated it is.  I hope to muster up the motivation to reward him for that good behavior with a really fresh, clean house today.  I do that best with lists.  Making a list of all I have to do gives some sense of accountability.  Uncrossed tasks mock me, taunt me.  I must make a list.

A dear friend catalyzed a memory for me today.  I remembered a story I read somewhere, the source long lost but the memory still very sweet:

A woman was having trouble keeping her house clean and informed her family that she was going to hire a cleaning lady. They were to treat the cleaning lady with respect and make sure that their personal spaces were ready for her to clean on the days she would come.  The woman hired a cleaning lady named Hazel.  She came in twice a week, on Mondays and Thursdays, to scrub and clean and beautify the house.  Hazel worked for 2 hours straight on each of those two days a week and for her efforts, received the princely sum of $25 a week.   She worked her magic while he kids were in school and the dad was at work.  (I'll bet you can see where this is going) 

After a few weeks, the family started to notice what a great job Hazel did and commented on it often.  The woman's husband even said that Hazel was one of the smartest investments they'd ever made.  The kids, after a time of transition and encouraging, were good about making sure their rooms were ready for Hazel to vacuum, dust and clean those two days a week.  Her husband would make sure his dirty clothes were in the hamper for Hazel to wash and the floor was clear for her to clean.  Yes, everyone agreed that Hazel was a wonderful addition to the family.

Of course, there was no Hazel.  There never had been.  The woman paid herself the $25 each week and used the money for pedicures, a new dress here and there, a facial, a book or two, etc.  She actually got to hear her family notice what the work she did and comment on what a fine job she'd done.  Now all she had to do was figure out how to handle Hazel's absence over summer vacation...


If only I liked to clean house more.  I love HAVING a clean house, I just despise doing the cleaning. It's my job and it only makes sense that I have that job.  I don't work outside of my home and I enjoy a blessed life here on my little mountaintop.  It's only fair that I give back in that capacity, but it's one of the few capacities that makes eyes narrow, my brow furrow and a hissing, irritated sound escape from between my teeth.  Damn.  Just like the cursed exercise, ain't nothing to it but to do it.

Or so someone said.

Everyone told me that I "wouldn't know what to do" with myself after Nathan started preschool and would be walking around the empty house, running into walls and missing my kids. I adore my kids, don't get me wrong, but I've been raising kids for 26 years, 32 if you count taking care of my brothers from the time I was 10 until I left home at 16.  I am thrilled to have these little people in my life, but I am also more than ready to get on with other parts of my life.  Particularly as I moved into Diva the first of August, I started feeling the edge of selfishness creep in and prep me for alone time.  Sadly, it has made me resent the cleaning more and left me less patient with the endless, endless LOUD chattering of the kids.  I am in dire need of solitude, but will need to adapt around what *is* for the time being while what *is* adapts around what I want.  It's a flux, the endless little 8 laying on its side in the infinity symbol:

Back and forth, over and under, through and around, each of us engaging in that dance until a fluid symbiosis is achieved.  Patience is a virtue, but it is not always one of mine.  Pain is inevitable (and relative) but suffering is optional. 

This morning was a struggle from the minute I opened my eyes.  I was so very tired from not sleeping well, heat coupled with my tooth signing show tunes for a little while.  I pried my eyes open and went to wake Delena, who also had a terrible time getting up. I finally told her if she could get 100% ready to walk out the door, she could doze for whatever time remained until we had to go out to meet the bus.  She managed a solid 15 minutes of rest and seemed grateful for it.  Nathan woke up earlier than usual and was needy while I was getting Delena out the door.  I assuaged him with a bath, which took up the extra space until time to get him ready.  His shoes have disappeared (as of last night) and I had to dig out old shoes for him to wear.  Finally got his lunch thrown together and him out the door a few minutes before the bus arrived.  He didn't feel the rush, which is good.  I like for my kids to get off to a good start in the morning rather than hearing me ranting and rushing around like a screaming shrew trying to get everything done.  After he left came the silence. 

The dog was an idiot (nothing new) all morning, so I chained him to a tree (although wrapping him in chains against the tree was a thought, it was ultimately too much work and he is just leashed to the tree on a long chain).  He's only about 5-6 months old, so even though he's big (I can still kick his ass - the requirement for any pet to remain in my home), he's still just a puppy and is therefore fairly stupid.  That dog is one of the worst things Eric has ever subjected me to, but now we are in it and I have to see it through or go to some kind of pet hell (which is kind of where I am now).  I figure if I can get this dog through his puppy time, he might stand a chance as an adult dog.  He is my cross to bear.

So after the dog was on the chain and two of three kids delivered to school and the other silently (not even the usual anguished screams when his character dies) playing video games upstairs, I have spent the morning writing to you folks and talking to Joe on the phone (it was a very joyful and productive talk).  Nathan will be home in a half hour, excited and full of piss and vinegar (Hi Carol!  ) from school.  I need to be ready.

I'm going to shake off the sleepies, make my list and get busy cleaning.  I'm running out of decent excuses.

(and believe me, my supply is impressive)

I do wish I had an industrial dishwasher, one of the ones with the overhead sprayer and a hopper that you throw the stuff into and it shoots 1000 degree shotgun jets through the dishes.  Since my only dishwashers are my own two hands, it sounds wonderful. 

Guess I should be more action and less talk.  Hope you have a wonderful, happy day.


PS:  click here===>>> In the "NO!  REALLY??" department  Idiots.