focus on the kind because sometimes you just have to

You know those days where you just want to punch it in the face?

Yes, those days!

Well on those days I like to focus on the kind and the good rather than the exhausting suckage. So today, right now, I will focus on this right here.

Last week, Zoë’s beach cruiser that she has had for more than five years was stolen. For Zoë this sucked. This sucked a lot because the last couple years she has been trying hard to be an adult even when it was hard to be an adult. The easy way would have been to ask mommy and daddy to help her out but she hasn’t. I know it has been hard, very hard for her but I am proud of her for being the grownup especially when it has been hard.

Come back to the Valley, her family and friends told her. You can start over, they told her. So she did and she has…as hard as it has been…but at least she has people here. It’s so much better to adult when you have people because adult is a lot harder than kids can imagine.

But having her bike stolen was a tipping point. It is currently her only form of transportation to work and, in the Fall, school. In her words, it like her independence had been taken away. But with the determination of her enterprising big sister so as to restore Zoë’s faith in human kindness, a few generous, kind people – family, friends, strangers – did just that raising more than enough funds to replace her red beach cruiser with something shiny and pink to get around the 209!

yay new bicycle! 💕
Thank you all so much. I was so incredibly upset when my bike was stolen, but you guys restored my faith in humanity. There are some really shitty people out there, but there are so many more kind and generous people. I love you all!

Hurray for kindness winning!

photo dump: triple digits edition

Dear East Coast, I’m sorry you are dealing with all that annoying wet stuff falling from the sky and saturating your neck of the woods. What is it that you call it? Oh, yeah, rain. I think I heard of rain before. I might have even seen it…then again, I don’t know for sure. Perhaps it’s just what I seen on the evening news. Meanwhile we are hot here in the Central Valley and pretty much everywhere on the West Coast. Very hot. Very dry, miserable hot with sticky clouds up above that only offer dry lightning strikes in the mountains because what’s one more raging wild fire right now?

Whatever!

We’re going over to Casa de Scarborough-Jacques because they have a pool and it’s hot…freaking, broiling hot.

Yeah, this will work. This will work out just fine.

At the end of the day the added bonus for Hollie and Ben…

…sleepy water babies.

not wasted

Nothing brings me more pleasure that the the sweet, unaffected laughter of any of my circus clowns. It’s so bright and so pure. Something so perfect I sometimes want to catch and keep forever with me; which is why I am always so very happy when I capture a moment like this.

In spite of the heat and the dry, dusty wind that has caused my allergies to flare up in such a way that is nothing but miserable, it still was a wonderful weekend because through swollen, red, itchy, tear-filled eyes I enjoyed the laughter shared with my family and their friends.

As for today, I have Benadryl and Motrin and so much laughter in the images that I collected.

I’m good.

A day without laughter is a day wasted. ~ Charlie Chaplin

kids, here are 10 things I may or may not have told you

You made me cry…a lot

Hollie and me – 1987. No apologies for the hair and glasses because 1987.

I wanted that last piece of pie…cake…cookie

Hollie, Zoë and me, 1992. Yes, those are matching Christmas sweaters. A gift. Funny how my darling husband didn’t receive one.

It hurt.

Hollie, Zoë, Abby and me, 1994. One child might never forgive me for this picture.

I was always afraid…still am…don’t judge, especially if you are not my child.

Hollie, Zoë, Abby, Jodie and us, 1996. Apparently we didn’t realize just how busy we were then as people told us ALL THE TIME that “we must be busy.

I know that I am not perfect.

And the Family Circus is completed, 2002. Also the year where any doubts of me being a perfect Mother were solidly squashed. Have a teenager and you will understand.

I watched you as you slept…still do.

Hollie, 1990

I carried you a lot longer than nine months.

Zoë, 1998

It broke my heart every time you cried.

Abby, 1997

I put you first.

Jodie, 1999

I would do it all over again…times five…to the infinity power.

Daniel, 2008

Kids, I can’t begin to express my gratitude that I get to be your Mother, Mommy, Mom, times five…to infinity and beyond.

I thank you all for calling me Mama, Mommy, Mom, Mommy Dearest, OMG-Mom, Mother; and, thank you , for needing me, teaching me, forgiving me, loving me, accepting me, modeling me and, most of all, amazing me because I get to say that I am Mom to these five remarkable people.

BONUS!! I have to say that I must be a pretty okay mom because these two perfectly, exquisite children  call me Mima…and give the best hugs.

 

no weasels were teased in this post

You can knit a kitten mittens
And perhaps that cat would purr.
You could fit a fox with socks
That exactly matched his fur.
You could make a goat a coat with a collar trimmed in mink
Or give a pig a wig
In a dainty shade of pink.
But never tease a weasel;
This is very good advice.
A weasel will not like it
And teasing isn’t nice!

A long, long time ago in a land far, far away called Mooncrest I literally read this book so many times that I had memorized it.

Never Tease A Weasel was a favorite of my brothers and sister. There were so many reasons to love this book in both the words and images. Bold, bright colors and wonderful rhymes that clearly paint a picture of all the reasons why we should never tease a weasel because it’s fun to be friends with a weasel instead. Yes, I read this to Randy, Billy and Valerie so many times to the point that the eminently repeatable refrains did become a part of  my familiar quotations.

A very familiar Mom-quote especially for this Fab Four. Growing up, they heard far too many times that they should never tease a weasel…or a sister…because teasing isn’t nice. And they often would roll their eyes because honestly Mom what does a weasel have to do with me teasing my sister anyway? Years later it has become a memory the four of them share and often laugh about…their mom telling them not to tease a weasel (there I’ve said it thrice!). Where in the world did that come from really they wondered out loud recently?

So of course I had to find the book because my grand babies need to learn that it is okay to knit a kitten mittens, give a moose some juice or bake a drake a cake…along with understanding that teasing is not nice.

If only I could find the original 1964 edition that doesn’t cost $30-60 or more.