Tuesday, April 30, 2013

tesseract of love

When things get really hard in a relationship that matters to me more than most any other relationship- like my mom, my husband, my kids- I sometimes forget, and go long lonely and miserable winter paths alone forgetting, wandering through cold scrubbed branches and abandoned lots of land, that no matter what they do, or what happens in the end, or what other people call our relationship when they talk about us ( they are talking about us, aren't they? ), or if we are, in the end, really able to hold hands through it all, the thing that brings summer, the thing that endures in lightness and ease, the thing that allows the world to alight on your shoulder with the birds and the sun and the leaves that fall and slip yellow and silky over your shoulder before they erupt in an enormous satisfying crunch underneath your footfall, the thing that is the tesseract for all that remains, is that I do my part with love.
It's so simple. Ridiculously simple. And possibly the hardest work of life. To let go with love? To be disappointed with love? To be hurt with love? To grieve with love? I think about Jesus and his beautiful love. A good agnostic girl that loves Jesus, Buddha, Mother Teresa, I love to dream about being a better, bigger, more love filled person than I am...dare to dream that I would even forgive and love myself. 

Monday, April 29, 2013

Up In The LBC

Dakota's first place on his own. We all loaded up and went for a day trip on Saturday to see our boy. 18, and he's learning guitar ( already plays bass ) working two different jobs ( tree work and putting together sound stages for music shows- he's at Coachella right now! ) and starting college soon, thinking about majoring in classical music. His band is practicing all the time; they have their first show in June! and a Facebook page- Like It I brought down a barrel full of vitamins- mostly fish oil- from my mom, per his request because he ran out. He's taking his vitamins! Score. I won't mention what his bathroom and kitchen look like. I wanted to drop our plans for the day and clean! I remember what my boyfriend's bathtub looked like when I was 17. You could have fed a colony of minnows.

We were all just overwhelmed with happiness to be together. It was more emotional coming to his turf than it was when he left. Somehow when he left, it was so easy to take it in stride as another one of his coming and goings, fooling ourselves that he was going going this time, but when we arrived at his new town, his new place, we couldn't hide from the fact that he had truly broken free. I felt a sudden, irrational anger at Long Beach and a flush of tears that wanted to come. That's Jake ( Dakota's best friend and bandmate ) Dakota and Ian up there.

Chuck's. Dakota eats there pretty regularly and Chuck's is an institution, been around for decades, was where Sublime went to jam and eat and bullshit around when they started making music. I had a omelette that was amazing, and inspired me to up my omelette skills when I got home, which I have.

The dog groomers next door to Chuck's produced this tiny little woman and her enormous dog. I think she could saddle that thing and ride him around town.

The picture on the left cracks me up. This is pure Ever. She is terrified and in love with vacuums, and the first thing she wanted to know when we got to Dakota's place was where his vacuum was. He produced it, and we took this picture. The oil drill on the right was one of the surprises of Long Beach- there are oil drills everywhere, in the most unexpected of places. We saw one right in the middle of an apartment complex! What a weird view. Long Beach is an oil town, that's where the money started.

Our four on Signal Hill

I love this picture so much. I love these kids so much. When they are all together I'm filled with this absolute contentment and satisfaction tinged with disbelief: how did I get so lucky? I always, always wanted a big family. And because of money and health issues, I didn't think I'd get it. I was blissfully wrong.

I think our guys look Italian here! Cracks me up. All they need is gold neck chains.
My boy. My boy!

Saturday, April 27, 2013

People In Your Neighborhood

Take a seat and read!

Why Violence Is Vanishing "As one becomes aware of the historical decline of violence, the world begins to look different. The past seems less innocent, the present less sinister. One starts to appreciate the small gifts of coexistence that would have seemed utopian to our ancestors: the interracial family playing in the park, the comedian who lands a zinger on the commander in chief, the countries that quietly back away from a crisis instead of escalating to war.

Chris Jordan writes a beautiful piece on how not only noticing the helpers, but importantly, teaching our children to BE the helpers is so important. This is one of my foundations and I am always passing this on to my own children."

Not only is this just Awesome and inspirational, it also made me laugh out loud multiple times.

Where you can donate for different Bostonians seriously injured in the bombings.

Since I was in my early twenties, my mom has been telling me that exposing people to radiation on a regular basis is more worrisome than missing a possible cancer by avoiding mammograms. This article is brilliantly written and researched, and a few of the paragraphs summarize the tide change with life altering information. I was actually stunned, for instance, by this: " D.C.I.S. survivors are celebrated at pink-ribbon events as triumphs of early detection: theirs was an easily treatable disease with a nearly 100 percent 10-year survival rate. The thing is, in most cases (estimates vary widely between 50 and 80 percent) D.C.I.S. will stay right where it is — “in situ” means “in place.” Unless it develops into invasive cancer, D.C.I.S. lacks the capacity to spread beyond the breast, so it will not become lethal. Autopsies have shown that as many as 14 percent of women who died of something other than breast cancer unknowingly had D.C.I.S.
There is as yet no sure way to tell which D.C.I.S. will turn into invasive cancer, so every instance is treated as if it is potentially life-threatening. That needs to change, according to Laura Esserman, director of the Carol Franc Buck Breast Care Center at the University of California, San Francisco. Esserman is campaigning to rename D.C.I.S. by removing its big “C” in an attempt to put it in perspective and tamp down women’s fear. “D.C.I.S. is not cancer,” she explained. “It’s a risk factor. For many D.C.I.S. lesions, there is only a 5 percent chance of invasive cancer developing over 10 years. That’s like the average risk of a 62-year-old. We don’t do heart surgery when someone comes in with high cholesterol. What are we doing to these people?"
The Complete Guide To Not Giving A Fuck - nuff said.

Gloria Harris' new piece in The Nervous Breakdown is gripping: her story of the day she bought a new car with 'blood money', had her baby and gave him up for adoption to her sister. She was 20, the same age as I was when I had Dakota, so I think this particularly got me.

If Game of Thrones had the same opening credits as Friends :)

Roundup linked to Parkison's, cancer, etc. Not shocking.

I loved this piece by Rob Roberge- hilarious

What if Google dumped you and you couldn't access anything Google? ERMEGAWD. It does happen.

Friday, April 26, 2013

One Hundred Percent Love

Lola Moon, 11
5th grade
it is the end of the schoolyear
it is her last year of Girl Scouts
she will be starting dance classes, her new passion

She still plays with her American girl dolls all the time
but when friends come over who aren't her best friends,
she hides the dolls in her closet
Her spirit is still as clear and beautiful as it was the day she was born
It shines with an undiluted light that tells me
we've been both very lucky and also very diligent and hard working
I take my job as a mother as seriously as I've ever taken anything.
This can be very painful
because I'm far from perfect-
but if my children aren't worth awful, bone deep growing pains
that keep you up at night
then what is?
She's in the beautiful in between
where she is old enough to know her own mind
and to see the beginnings of the edges of what is dark in this world
but not exposed or aware enough yet to be saturated.
She feels deep empathy for others and parallel
is at the starting gate of excruciating 'embarrassin' pains' :
that time in your life where what you fear most is being humiliated.
This is why when I asked her how her day was yesterday
she told me the story with emotion:
how her friend was SO EMBARRASSED and she felt SO BAD for her
because her cell phone rang in class
and her ringtone was a pop song
I don't make fun of her too much
Just a little bit
And I'm careful what I do make fun of
I know her true sore spots
and I stay far away from them
because I love her
and I don't feel the need to put her in her place.
Most of the time. And when I do, I try to do it firmly. Not meanly.
This is a big deal for me.

She is getting an edge, a pre teen edge
that roughs up my own unsmoothed edges.
These are the frictions between mothers and daughters
and will be the hardest working years of parenting her for me
mostly not because of her
but because of me.
I'm sure you understand.
I have to make close observation of my actions
and make sure that I'm not parenting an 11 year old girl
from the long ago welts and hurts of the 11 year old girl I was.
I have to find the woman in me when the girl in me is getting in the way
and parent both my own daughter and myself.
I'm going to have some miserable failures.
I am, I am.
But long ago my therapist told me 80% :
keep it good 80% of the time
and your gold.
So here's to 85% percent
because I like to dream big
and this girl is worth it.

Thursday, April 25, 2013

I Keep Returning To Martin

There's everything and nothing to say. Sometimes a picture really is worth a thousand, million words, or a thousand million cries of grief. 

I threw a flower in the fountain today for each of the four people who died. The student, the sweet freckled girl, the little boy, the police officer.

I am reading this book, The Little Ice Age, and it covers the weather period of 1300-1600 I think. All throughout this book enormous numbers of people suffer and die, in all parts of the world, for all kinds of random reasons, some I can process and some I cannot. Our lives are so fragile. Only the love we have for each other and life can bring healing to those who are left behind, and there will be never ending waves of those left behind for as long as human beings live. I want a world that continues to be better for all those left behind and to come. I want Martin's message to be heard, so I put it here. We do what we can. 


Tuesday, April 23, 2013


This is a well researched and written piece, the most interesting I've read on the Tamberlan Tsarnaev: The Radicalization of Tamberlan Tsarnaev. The ending resonates deeply in me like a bell, sounding out the question I've asked my whole life, the question the Dishwasher asks: How do we reconcile the beauty with the horror? 

In my poem  The Last Time I Saw You, written about my father, I end with what is, for me, the confounding truth of not only my own father, but human beings. That we are capable of goodness and love and then- something else happens, something internal, external, something mysteriously powerful, profoundly personal and yet not unique, and there is a dark place without compassion, where rage, fear, and finally evil begin to grow on the walls, cover the floor, strangle the emptiness with thick veins. This dark place is where bombs explode, where fathers hurt their little daughters, where we walk past babies on the ground or cheer on suicide attempts. Eruptions of evil from a person who also acts with care are confounding. The small erosion that can take place inside a person, silently and invisibly, without even a great abuse or neglect, but simply with a constant wearing away at deep connection with other human beings- whatever the reason, the source, the fault- is the place where the faultline lets and the dam breaks and everything unseen is seen, everything unheard is screamed.

When a person is insane, or cruel throughout their life, never loving, never showing compassion or sweetness or kindness, it is easier to accept the worst. It is terrifying to think on a person who dotes on his mother, helps stranded passengers and cries when his cat dies and then blows up innocent human beings. 

in my poem,  the same ending as the news piece, just different words.

the last time i saw you,
i imagined you on your deathbed,
whispering your compassionate philosophies,
telling the story of the time you saved
a woman and her daughters from car jackers,

oh god! once you saved a woman
and her daughters.

Monday, April 22, 2013

We Built A Cardboard House

I saw this on Pinterest and left it up on the screen for inspiration, though I did not follow directions.
So cute, fairly easy, wrestling with the incredibly sticky and determined to twist up tape was the only aggravating part, and we intend on building a mini city this way, probably to put up on our front porch.

People In Your Neighborhood -the late edition-

take a seat and read

Dear Dzhokhar -there are a lot of things to say about the Boston Bombing and the boys who did it. This is the piece that most struck me.

This personal essay on the author's loss of both parents, her lack of grief, and what it means to 'know someone' is fascinating.

Someone put this up on FB on Friday and I laughed SO hard. Hilarious.

Have you watched Top of The Lake? I really like it, and this piece on the depiction of rape culture in TOTL is a smart breakdown of an ugly, important subject.

I don't know why I find it so fascinating to read about the inner working politicking and bickering of the Today show and its stars, but I do. This absorbed me.

Zoe's Story. Drugs can take anyone, even our perfect, good, life loving children. Eyes Wide Open.

Anonymous is doing important work.

An interview with David Foster Wallace turned into animation. 

I really want to go stay in a treehouse resort.

I've been avoiding plastic as much as possible for years now. This article gives good suggestions on what to look out for.

I've watched every episode of Marriage and Other Tragedies. Thanks Serge.

Thursday, April 18, 2013

a hundred million little bells

and at night i listen to the sound of space from which everything that has been removed: Ever's tiny little voice, which we all agree is THE cutest baby voice we've ever heard, Lola's singing, talking to Ever, fussing at Ever, laughing, the dogs barking annoyingly at a leaf in the wind or a scrape against the door, the phone ringing with Ian or Dakota on the line, I listen

{{{                                                            }}}

and because I am artistic/neurotic/hopeless I am filled with a terrible panic that rises like bile in my throat and clutches at my heart from the uterus with one growing fruit hanging dumbly, more like a useless bell, and I am in an instant reminded of how heartbreakingly precious and beautiful my children are to me and how much more important life is than a cynical remark tossed over our shoulder, a clever wit to fence with, a dismissal of truth as easily as we push post, reply, like. Yes I must demand more from myself than I am because I started out so deeply flawed and broken, and my children, while they never had a mother who was a grown up in the sense of the word that most mean, they have gotten and deserve a mother who pushed herself to recreate, to heal, to mend. It is the best I can offer and I intend to keep offering the best I have, which is more about the worth and meaning of the work than it is about the result. That is my offering. A staggering awestruck love and a tireless devotion to working through life. Some days this is beautiful, other days this is terribly sad, as Patty Griffith says ' sometimes i feel like / i never been nothin but tired / and i'll be walking / till the day i expire '. One of my favorite songs, a testament. 

i let the silence roll through me and over me as if i were laying silent and drowned like Ophelia in the reeds, the water pushing open my eyelids as if i were still here. see this world? is is everything you have. see this love? is it everything. 

at times i can hardly bear the vast space between the mother i want to give my children and the mother i am. this is not a cultural demarcation but for me, a natural result of the gulf between the enormity of my love for them and my power as a woman to triumph over my faults and express that love. some days this is beautiful, some days this is terribly sad. the real meat of it is: whatever i or you think it is, it is what i have, and that is that. if i turn it too much in my hands it dissolves and i am confused if i am enough. if i see it, name it, write it, i acknowledge it's existence, which is the greatest offering of respect one can give- a proper greeting. then, there is no confusion 'if i am enough': i am this, no more and no less, and can only move forward if i start here.

here {{{{{{{{                      }}}}}}}}}

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Wal-Mart White Cloud Diapers!!

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of White Cloud Diapers

I was invited to a home event to learn about and have Ever try White Cloud Diapers. Unfortunately we couldn't attend last minute due to Ever's chest cold, but we did put White Cloud Size 5 diapers on Ever and were very happy with the result- she stays dry all night and is comfortable, for a much cheaper price than other brands. I'd never noticed these diapers before, and was very pleasantly surprised to find that Wal-Mart was reintroducing this brand and that White Cloud Diapers are so affordable, accessible and soft.

Ever is wearing a size 5 White Cloud diaper from  Wal-Mart  and both she and I love them. They are
soft and the sides are lined with cotton so the elastic hold doesn't pinch or bother her skin. White Cloud are also hypoallergenic, and Ever doesn't get rashes wearing these- they are also fragrance free which is a must have for me. The newborn to size 2 have color changes on the diaper than indicate maximum saturation :) to help avoid those messy and inconvenient major leaks we've all had with our kids.

Wal-Marts are everywhere and so these cheap and soft diapers aren't something you have to go out of your way to find. I have a Wal-Mart literally two blocks from our home.

And really, if diapers are terrible, no matter how cheap they are I'm not going to buy them. It's not worth the hassle of leaks, Ever being uncomfortable or having to change her more often. These diapers are so affordable and really work beautifully. Ever doesn't pull at them and whine ( read: pinching at the seams ) leak out overnight ( read: plenty absorbent ) take them off and throw them in the trash ( read: she hates the way they feel ) get rashes ( read: the diaper is irritating her skin or not absorbing enough urine ) or complain about her booty ( read: well, you get the picture ).

Diapering can be one of the biggest expenses in a family’s weekly budget and a great performing diaper is a must-have for parents. In order to make this affordable, Wal-Mart has reintroduced their premium line of White Cloud diapers to address the needs of today’s busy parents.
White Cloud Diapers provide your baby the highest quality diaper with superior leakage protection, exceptional softness and great fit. White Cloud Diapers are available exclusively at Walmart, where you can find low prices everyday on all your family’s needs. Check them out today
This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of #WhiteCloudDiapers.

Monday, April 15, 2013

Depressed In California

Sometimes I think the images are eating my words. The more photos crowd Photoshop and Picmonkey and spill into my email and camera memory the less my brain can express with language. The Sad Fish is eating my brains like the bad zombie it is, and that with the constant tide of this last year- over a year- of my husband coming back and just barely touching before being sucked back in the dark waters.  Medications, purple and blue and white, voodoo magic, I will prick each finger and bleed if it worked. I'd eat bananas for each meal. I'd make brussel sprouts my only vegetable for the rest of my life. I'd lose a hand. I really would, for a lifetime reprieve for him. For us.

You must think of anything else
You can't think of anything else
You must think of everything else
You can't think of anything else
You must think of them.
So you do.

There are bright flashes of other moments but overall there is just the enormous knowledge that what I'm doing isn't working to end this depression and that seeming good enough for everyone else isn't enough even though- even though- it's so much better than NOT being good enough for everyone else, and of course by everyone else I mean my four kids. I've been doing things that have helped- regular exercise for two months now- low sugar, little infusions of good, like TED talks or a funny movie- but at this point I need more. So I'm thinking maybe a support group. Looking into it. I don't want to have to up my medication, I'm on 25 zoloft now, but if I have to, I will. I guess. Blah.

I am constantly thinking of the good, beautiful and the love, but I can't feel it.
That is depression. And everyone who has lost someone knows, an absence hurts. A void has it's own kind of pain that is not like a direct blow, but just as disabling over time.

I am following the Buddhist way and accepting how I feel
Because apparently I have to learn over and over and over and over that fighting the good fight isn't always a sign of strength- sometimes it's a sign of fear, and the bravest thing I can do is admit, surrender, and take care.

Ahoy mates. I surrender.

Listening to THIS " The Sun Is Gonna Shine Again " Steve Martin and Edie Brickell

Sunday, April 14, 2013


Saturday, April 13, 2013

People In Your Neighborhood

Take a seat and read!!

Chris Arnade's photostream is one of the most heartbreaking, eye opening and relevant I've ever seen. Witness. Testify.

21 Tips To Keep Your Shit Together When You Are Depressed - nuff said.

How To Fold a Fitted Sheet drives. me. nuts.

More horrifying news about the levels of lead in rice. I have switched my family from eating rice three-six times a week to none. We eat quinoa. " lead exposure levels 30 to 60 times greater than the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) provisional total tolerable intake (PTTI) levels for children and 20-40 times greater than the standard exposure levels for adults."

These amazing books are the result of painstaking artistic work and creativity.

One of my favorite You-Tube finds, ever. Just gloriously funny. I always wanted my life to be an opera. ' why won't you sleep / is it your teeth? / i need another coffee! ' HAHAHA!!!!

Lynn Beisner wrote Everyone Deserves To Heal At Their Own Pace, an essay that moved me deeply.  That moved me personally. We are saying that while we may not hold a victim at fault for what caused the injury, we will hold them at fault if it leaves a permanent scar or disability."

I had no idea. And it's hard to know. Iraqi Birth Defects Worse Than Hiroshima I wonder what President Obama thinks when he sees this. I believe he is a deeply good man. What does he know that we do not about the choices that he makes? What does he believe that holds him to those choices in the the face of this? He could never speak on it, because we wouldn't stand for it, the public, we wouldn't stand to hear the truth of a presidency said out loud, the choices they make, the why, the who, consequences avoided that we never knew existed, consequences lived with that are unbearable. 

Friday, April 12, 2013

Theirs In The Lonely World

The day spent in dull stupefication but for the roar of coffee in my veins, the suck of Ever at my breast.
And then, the most amazing richness saturates every molecule and I see my children's faces each always at the same age, captured around 6 years old, eyes especially, looking directly into me and shining with a pure unadulterated love and contentment that lets me know not only have I been far luckier than I dare to understand, I have done a good job as a mother. If I sit in in a shady spot under a tree in a field and the sky is broken open just above and there is a long, deep, blue streak where you can see forever, if the wind is blowing, if the trees call to one another in their shaky ancient voices, if my body has let go into the tiny link between star and dirt that I am, at that moment when the most profound joy and truth rises, it is my children and it is mothering that most calls to my bones and soul: has it been good? Has it been the most you could give? And I cannot say I am close to perfect, but I can say it has been good, and the most I could give. For that, eternally grateful.

Yours In The Lonely World,


Epic Family Photobomb

Brought to you by Bodie.

Thursday, April 11, 2013


my eye: a star infracted,
the heart knot imploding
soft and wet, a burst of fluid
from the mouth during extreme emotion.

call the Doctor, blissful.
she will show you charts,
blood tests, the latest CT scan-
every reason for relief.

i, for one, know better.

these are the veins that ill,
this is the cell that duplicates until
in every imagined eventuality,
i kill myself over and over.

you may temper with drug,
sleep me, 
in foreclosures of hope
you might slap me,

just to change the subject.
you may force me to accept
the most hideous injuries
abuses, lies, bald skin under

the frizzy brown wig.
the eye you calm is your own,
for i will never be convinced
that anything will be all right.

that is simply too much to hope for.

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Daddy's Home!

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

What I'm Doing For Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment in Child Abuse Awareness Month

Hello beautiful readers. April is Child Abuse Awareness month. Now whenever these kind of months come around- some more profound than others, obviously Cricket Awareness isn't as important as Child Abuse ( now I'm going to get PETA people writing me nasty emails )- I always stop for a moment and think

what do you mean, awareness? what exactly does awareness do?

Like most of you I am saturated daily with terrible stories of loss and heartache and death and violence, and like many of you I move away from most of those with the intent that drowning in the world's sorrows isn't helping anyone, anywhere, especially not those I can more directly impact, like my family, or the guy down the street who is asking for money.

It is for this reason that I believe many people refuse to read about or discuss child abuse cases. The very words

child abuse

look terribly wrong together, sickening, and bring about some of our deepest fears as human beings:

Are people mostly insane?
Am I capable of turning into that type of person, the type who would hurt a child?
What type of a person DOES hurt a child?
Do I know someone who is hurting their child?

And at that point, or maybe after the first question, we stop thinking about it because it's everything.
Our children are our everything.
They are our now, our future, our past DNA brought to today, they are everything that is best about human beings.

I know it's important to be sane, and I know that thinking about child abuse for any real period of time makes us feel insane. I also know that if we are to ever have any hope of greatly, greatly reducing child abuse cases in the United States, much less wiping it out, we have to be willing to feel these things, at least a little, and we have to find something- even something very small, that we can do to help.

My good and old friend Ms. Dena Rash Guzman linked this article on her Facebook last week, and it was a gut punch. Just read this one paragraph:

“More than 20,000 American children are believed to have been killed in their own homes by family members in the last 10 years, nearly four times the number of U.S. soldiers killed in Iraq and Afghanistan. A BBC investigation finds that the United States has the worst child-abuse record of all the industrialized nations. Every week, 66 children under 15 die from physical abuse or neglect in the First World, 27 of them in the U.S. Experts say teen pregnancy, high-school dropout rates, violent crime, imprisonment, and poverty are generally much higher in the United States.”


I am doing a virtual fundraiser for Childhelp by doing a fundraising hike in my hometown. Childhelp is an organization that works to prevent child abuse and also to help children who have been abused. They work with various celebrities and currently are working with Jordin Sparks, American Idol alumni and singer. 

Every Spring, Childhelp organizes a fundraising marathon in Arizona to raise money for their organization. If you cannot be there but want to help, you can start your own walk/hike/run where you live and fundraise for Childhelp with a fundraising page, and that is what I am doing. The main point of a fundraiser is ... to raise money! You can donate here.

My hike is April 28th in Poway at Blue Sky Reserve, my family will be hiking and anyone who wants to come join us!!


1. Donate to my Childhelp fundraiser. All you have to do is click here and scroll down and make a one time donation.

2. Help me spread the word about my Childhelp fundraising hike. Put my link and brief information on your blog, Facebook page, Pinterest and Twitter.

If you choose to spread the word, I'd love a heads up about your link or notice! 

Thank you so much.

Monday, April 8, 2013

a mover's wife

i could lay my body across your arms
you'd carry me through fields with maggots
in dead rodents, through rivers of blood bramble,
through the sanctuary of thistle down and bedrock
against water.

wrap my breasts in blue tape, bundle the arms and legs.
press your mouth against my mouth
do not mistake this for a thumb.
there is no silencing screams of pleasure

across the deserts we camped in tents and against
the train tracks where three children died at three am
blocking the moon from view, buried in puffy vests,
blown apart as easily as dandelion down from
your mouth.

i shuddered underneath your long body
in the ink blot where the dune met sky
the train wailed and rattled down the track
i am afraid i whispered. you should be, you
whisper back

move the bedframes, the oak dresser, the mirror
made of a thousand butchered swans
move the weather caster, she witch makes spells
to forecast rain or dry, you found her vibrator in
the couch

i married a mover, a working class body
a man whose hands are on the human stain
every day, i am waiting for your long carry
me over the mountain where the bears and coyotes

where you tell me i should never be afraid 
you have never broken a glass vase
or cracked a plate, never scraped the finish
off canvas though i am not still life
still life.

though broken already, i swallow this lie
it pips its own birth and cracks from my teeth
as yellow and fortified as the first milk 
as ugly and new as we are.

maggie may ethridge


Staying up late, drinking a beer, eating pretzels filled with peanut butter, when I had done so well being gluten free all week. Hells bells. It was a beautiful weekend with the kids. Not so much with my marriage. I am struggling to come out of a funk, compounded by my health issues. One doesn't cause the other, but when they happen together, it's very hard. I'm struggling mightily to write and it feels disgusting. Like a clogged drainpipe filled with old hair and pieces of soap and clumps of foot rot. I keep forgetting the words to everything. Fork. Clippers. Perishables. What is that? my kids are used to hearing me say. I feel tired of a lot of things and that is a great big warning bell. I've written two sentences that I've erased so far. That tells me a lot. I am tired of, most and foremost, having this great big enormous bounty of joy and love and divinity right in front of me in my children and being unable for it to really affect me, the way it has most my life, the way they do when I'm not sunk. Depression is very dramatic in its very dullness. Everything is so dulled and diminished that I literally feel underwater, but it is punctuated by enough times where I break through, taking in big desperate gulps of air , that I can move. I can move. I have had a lifetime of experience with depression and anxiety, and what I've learned most deeply is that lack of emotion is not an indicator that I don't care about something, and I must keep that closely in hand when making decisions. Once you come out of it, and the feelings flood back, it is a horrifying experience to realize you've said or done things that are not true to you, only true to depression. I have learned that lesson, and I abide by it devotedly.
I know these two are important.
Rachel Zoe often says certain fashion pieces are 'everything'.
I do not think that word means what she thinks it means.
These two are everything.

Sunday, April 7, 2013

People In Your Neighborhood

A story so vividly written, an old lady so fiercely alive.

Augusten Burroughs, a literary love of mine and Mr. Curry, gets married.

Could this be any more charming? Mark Twain's Advice To Little Girls. circa 1865

This was hard to read. It's a beautifully rendered piece- On Divorce.

The Onion's short little paragraph on Roger Ebert's passing made me cry. The perfect salute.

Dirty Dancing Cinemash with Charlyne Yi and Channing Tatum. Ha! 

Monica Bielanko's 7 Ways I Saved My Marriage. She is one of the last paid bloggers keeping it real. I read everything she writes. Even her 'theme' posts are above the ordinary- she's done one on tattoos on women throughout history and the evolution of the baby stroller- actually interesting instead of mind numbing scrolling. 

I'm going to be sitting down with Lola today and looking through this with her- 18 Celebrity Photoshop Before and After Images. Crucial to young boys and girls understanding of media, femininity, advertising and self image.

The Sprinter and The Trudger

So last week I linked The Actual Pastor's manifesto about not telling parents to enjoy it now,  because they grow up so fast. This week, thanks to Elizabeth, I'm linking you to his wife, Mary Wiens, and her tale of how her frustration and sadness at the extreme changes wrought on her athletic body by twin pregnancy and birth were transformed by her profound realizations. Every now and then someone writes an essay on this subject- this is the best I've read in blogland.

Happy Reading.

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Anti-Progress Committee

Anti Progress Committee: Sometimes the best is to forget goal making, list life changing go opportunity makeithappen and simply exist where you are, in the moment of your life, where you sit, feeling your feet on the ground like the yogis tell us, our toes against the concrete or wood or grass, our shoulders hunched can relax, we remember that we breathe, we see, we forget what we try to be and embrace what we are, we wake up in the middle of our day and for the first time in all those hours of consciousness we see the sky, listen to the sound of ----, let our bodies fall into the present and our minds break open and fall away and fill with the awe and pleasure of simply being alive. The birds in the tree. The traffic far off.  Our itchy ass. The fat lump behind the bra. The washer thumping. The space around. Art cannot be created without existence. Existence cannot be illuminated without consciousness. Consciousness cannot be expressed without awareness. Awareness cannot be profound without Now. Now cannot be known without stopping.

Join my Committee and do nothing but the one thing you were born to do: live now.


A List of Small Import

Things I Keep Thinking About

Jessica Mitford
Ink drawings of foxes
Fetish porn
The pain in my side
My liver
My gallbladder
Mr. Curry
My sister
Moving to Nashville in two years ( maybe )
My swollen gums
How for the first time in my entire life I am not regularly brushing my teeth
How those are not parallel for no reason
Lena Dunham
The opening sequence and music to Romancing the Stone and how it always makes me feel happy
Danny Devito in Romancing The Stone and how adorable and ridiculous he is
Starbucks espresso shots with whipped cream 
The amount of sugar and sodium in so many things
How to protect Dakota when he is so far away
The fact that I cannot protect Dakota when he is so far away
The fact that every one dies
The fact that I can't really comprehend that I will die
The fact that I spend a lot of time thinking about death
Who will take care of my children when they are old and ill
Making my kids get long term health insurance when they are my age
How the longer I think the more things I list that I can't control but desire to
The one time Mr. Curry filled a room, an entire bedroom, ENTIRELY, with balloons that each had a different reason he loved me written on them
How sex is way sexier now than in my 20's
How I'm going to turn 40 at some point here
The movie Practical Magic & how it's Lola's favorite & I love it & Nicole Kidman looks fresh awesome gorgeous 
How Keith Urban got NICOLE tattooed on his bicep
How I can't wait to see my name tattooed on Mr. Curry 
How possessive I am of what and who I love
How the word 'whom' is leaving the English language
How fussy Ever is lately because she's got a cold in her chest
How Mr. Curry and I take turns pounding her back a few times a day because we learned in the RSV hospital stay that helps loosen mucus
How LOOSEN MUCUS should be the name of a Harry Potter villan


Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Moms Understand

As much as I don't love this picture of me, I love this picture of Ever and I even more.


Ever in her 'getup' as my grandpa would have said. I miss my Grandpa MD Gardner. What did the D stand for? Ah. NOTHING! That's the secret. His name was Man. I've never heard of anyone named Man outside my Grandpa. A good name for a novel.

I love this so much.

E ( Lola's bestie ) and Ian and Kins and Lola. We were heading out somewhere. Ian is so much fun to hang out with right now. He likes to tease me because teenagers do that,  but we can spend hours out running errands talking.  

The baby of the family. Her face is immediate and  yet feels already gone to me, the mother of four, it's so hard to stay in the moment because I know all too well how quickly this tiny person will be gone. I see in her my own face at her age, and Ian, too, and when she crinkles her nose and eyes a certain way she is a ringer for her Daddy.

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