Bite Me


Title courtesy of Edward who likes to type.

I once told Steve that anyone who refuses to use a neti pot has no right to complain about a head cold. Like when Patrick used to say, "I'm bored" and I would make him clean the playroom (do you know what Patrick never says anymore? that's right; I'm clever) every time Steve started to complain about being congested I would ask, "Well, have you used a neti pot? Then shut up" and he would slink away to call some male friend who would no doubt gasp, "A COLD? MY GOD! That's terrible! You should go to bed and stay there for at least a week." But he wouldn't moan to me about it so... self-righteousness and efficacy, the gin and tonic of a happy marriage.

And then, this winter, he DID. Steve DID use a neti pot and he realized that I had been right all along (not that he said so, exactly, but I could tell he was awed and humbled in my presence) and suddenly the implication of my edict was realized. He has a head cold. He uses the neti pot. And he not only gets to describe his minute by minute respiratory issues in hideous detail, he gets to whine about them. On the plus side I fully expect the neti pot to reduce the time of my suffering (his suffering, whatever) by half. On the minus side the illness will seem four times longer.

Hmmm. You know, when Edward woke me up at three in the morning on Sunday he said, "Oh Mommy, Mommy, hold me. There's an owie in my ear. This is terrible." I thought it was adorable and compelling but it occurrs to me that in 40 years it'll just sound like whining to someone.


The whole family went to the farm this past weekend (my first time with Caroline and Edward since last summer; Steve and his friend have been de-deathifying it all winter) and it was extremely pretty. It has taken me over a decade to appreciate a Midwestern Spring. When I first moved to Minnesota I thought it was the sorriest excuse for a season I had ever experienced. I was used to DC where Spring shoves its tightly corseted daffodils right up into your face, the azaleas leave embarrassing marks on your collar and every dogwood you meet tries to grope your crotch. Here Spring is coy; just out of the schoolroom. It might offer you a glimpse of a grassy ankle but then weeks will pass before you get so much as a peep at its shy violets.

Three hours south of here and just across the river we didn't get the full burlesque of a MidAtlantic  *M*A*Y* but it was cheeky nonetheless and the kids (ours and theirs - they being our co-farmers) filled plastic cups with enough picked flowers to make our mothers' day breakfast table look like a parade float.





Next time I'll take pictures inside the house, if you're interested. It's amazing what Steve and friend accomplished with a million weekends, craiglist and a whole lot of paint.


Edward is a sweetheart. A loaded baked potato with extra butter and bacon. He gives spontaneous kisses with both hands cradling my face. He says things in the middle of reading a book like, "Oh I yub you SO MUCH." When Caroline started crying in the car because he had 40 cars in a case on his lap and she had none he said, "Oh I can help you!" Then he asked her about her favorite colors and what kind of car she would like and although in the end, of course, he never gave her one of his precious cars he did manage to distract her for at least five minutes with his cheerful conversation about cars he might give her if he were so inclined.

He also wants to be just like Patrick. I'm biased like a directional error but I think there are worse ambitions.

I love this picture. And I'm fascinated by the unintentional similarities.


More Edward in all his fake-crabby glory.




Just to add a data point or two to my theory of fluctuating electronic doomy doom doom doom:

- A few days ago the babysitter had just put the kids to bed when our security system spontaneously short-circuited, causing the fire alarms to sound without ceasing. A few minutes later the monitoring company called to check our status and when the sitter was unable to provide them with our secret password they called my cell phone. Me? I was watching Rio (meh) with Patrick in a movie theater and had courteously turned off my mobile electronic device. So ADT dispatched the fire department - as was right and proper - giving Edward a thrill, the babysitter a heart attack and Caroline... I think Caroline got ideas for her next performance art installment.

The security company could not determine why the main board fritzed so they replaced it and did not charge us for the service call. The fire department, however, was less understanding about their wasted trip. So as a cautionary tale - if you have a security system you might want to consider giving people who have your permission to be alone in your house the necessary codes to stop the shrieking should the alarm commit seppuku. You're welcome.

- I was going to add that my return to the farm this weekend was marred by the water pouring through the ceiling of the house where we had been planning to stay but considering the fact that the most recent inhabitants were a family of raccoons it hardly seems fair to attach cosmic significance to the plumbing failure. Less misfortune than inevitability.

- However, the fact that I came home from the farm on Sunday and found that our DVR had died ("Oh!" the Directv minion said brightly. "I know that error code! That's a fatal error!") taking five episodes of The Killing, the entire season thus far of Upstairs Downstairs, 62 episodes of Little Einsteins and heartbreak of heartbreaks the Turkish Grand Prix... all gone - that was clearly a continuance of our bad luck streak.


Speaking of performance art Caroline was clearly just born this way. Every goddamned day she seems to come up with a new way to do something ordinary.

Want to see what I discovered when I went upstairs to wake her up the other morning? She had gone off to do her morning closet shelves climbing exercise but this was what her bed looked like [click here.]

Honest to Betsy what do you DO with her?  

 I mean besides dress her in all the bright colors I have never been able to wear.



This is my favorite series:

Ah! A spring blossom!


Nature's first green is gold et cetera.


Splendor in the grass... glory in the flower


Aaaaaaaaand done.


So she tossed it over her shoulder and most likely stepped on it later.

Revel in nature's majesty? Check. Next up: flight!