Thursday, December 29, 2005


My nephew, Brandon, turned 15 yesterday. And it made me sad and happy. I remember when he was born very clearly, I was 17. My brother was 21 and his wife only 19. This baby was one of those oops babies, and thus resulted in a hurried wedding. Despite the circumstances, my family gathered around my brother and his young wife and supported them all the way. We were there at the hospital when he was born and have all been there ever since. All of us helped out in caring for the new baby, because both my brother and his wife had to work. Between my mother, my grandmother and myself,and of course his parents, Brandon was well-cared for. He was the first baby I had ever really spent any time with and led me to believe that babies were easy. He was a sweet, quiet, happy little thing and is still that way to this day. Except he isn't so little anymore. I saw him for Christmas a few days ago and cried. I had not seen him in about a year and he had changed so much. His voice is deep, he is taller than me now and his body has filled out to become a young man's instead of the scraggly boy body he had. We all went out for dinner to celebrate his birthday and after dinner my brother and Brandon's mother gave him the used truck they bought him for his birthday. He was so overwhelmed with emotion he couldn't really say anyhing, but hugged them and cried. Some people were aghast at the notion of a 15 year old getting a truck for his birthday. Some people don't get it. According to my brother, they got this truck because it was a great deal, Brandon fell in love with it when he saw it (before they bought it), and the year he will spend driving it under the direct supervision of a parent will be beneficial to him when he is on his own next year. And the kid deserves it. He is such a great kid, kind, thoughtful, polite, well-behaved, and smart. He is on the honor roll every single term at school and has been since there was an honor roll. He never causes any trouble for his parents, who divorced when he was 5. He is nothing but wonderful. Happy birthday Brandon!

Brandon at 8 weeks and 6 months old

Brandon with baby Hayden, 1995

Brandon, age 5

Brandon on his 15th birthday with is truck

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Holiday Images

Monday, December 19, 2005

These things take up space in my brain and drive me to distraction

The stack of 16 magazines that I subscribe to that have piled up since October when I got bogged down with work, school, and work,

The 5th Harry Potter book that I started reading in the summer.

The curtain rod that is not yet hung that leans in a corner in my closet.

The overgrown shrubs in the front yard.

The bare lightbulb that sticks out in the stairwell to the basement, longing for its fixture.

The shaggy dog in need of grooming.

The shaggy boys in need of grooming.

The haggard looking caulking around the kitchen sink.

The new phones that need to be programmed with the list of 60 or so phone numbers.

Saturday, December 17, 2005

The English language according to Jonas and Tristan

Opidus - 8-legged creature that lives in the ocean
Nut Whacker - wooden man that stands very stiff and is a favorite holiday decoration
I'm angry about you - I feel very angry with you right now
Ebscabater - large construction equipment that normally runs on tracks, aka excavator
Hitcups - that annoying spasm of the esophagus
Hitmopotmatus - large animal often found in Africa, the focus of a favorite series of children's books called "Georga and Martha"
O lot - more than one of something, in fact more than several

I love the way 3 year old talk, don't you?

Thursday, December 08, 2005

All because of you

I was born a child of grace
Nothing else about the place
Everything was ugly but your beautiful face
And it left me no illusion

I saw you in the curve of the moon
In the shadow cast across my room
You heard me in my tune
When I just heard confusion

All because of you
All because of you
All because of you
I am...I am

I like the sound of my own voice
I didn't give anyone else a choice
An intellectual tortoise
Racing with your bullet train

Some people get squashed crossing the tracks
Some people got high rises on their backs
I'm not broke but you can see the cracks
You can make me perfect again

All because of you
All because of you
All because of you
I am...I am

I'm alive
I'm being born
I just arrived, I'm at the door
Of the place I started out from
And I want back inside

All because of you
All because of you
All because of you
I am

The day she turned 10

My girl turned 10 yesterday. A decade ago, my life changed forever. I had no idea what a profound effect that baby girl would have on my life, how could I know? I was 22 and while I had a lot of life experiences by that time, I had zero experience with children. And this girl is everything a mom or dad could need or want. She is perfect in her flaws and her gifts.

Having a birthday on a weekday kind of sucks. I had class last night and I could not skip it, we had a review for our final exam and I had hella work to do on a project. We took Hayden out the night before, along with my parents, for dinner. It was very nice to spend time with mom and dad, and the twins even acted human during the meal. I think they did it as a gift to their sister.

Hayden's real party is this Saturday. I took off from work in order to celebrate with her and her friends. Parties have become all girls in the last few years, she is phasing out the kids that are only acquaintances and inviting the girls she really cares about. Watching her grow up and turn into a pre-teen has been rewarding, exciting, and a little scary too. Of late we are subjected to random emotional outbursts and random acts of kindness. It leaves me feeling like I am on an amusement park ride that isn't working properly. Anyway, the party involves 5 of her closest friends, the undivided attention of both of her parents for the night, a visit to the new aquarium in Atlanta, dinner out in a restaurant downtown, and then a sleepover. All of this sans brothers. We have arranged for my best friend's mom to stay with the boys so that we can be Hayden's for the night. We have been tying to do this since they were born, trying to make her birthday about her with a break from having twin brothers. Because it is hard for a young girl to have young twin brothers, especially if I am her mother.

Happy birthday young lady. You are an amazing person with a whole life ahead of you and a grand assortment of things to offer it. I adore you.

Mama taught me better

According to Merriam-Webster, RSVP means:

Main Entry: RSVP
Function: abbreviation
Etymology: French répondez s'il vous plaît
please reply

See that? It means PLEASE REPLY. One way or another. When a person is planning a birthday party for a 10 year old and has to buy tickets in advance for the main attraction at said party, then FUCKING PLEASE REPLY! If I didn't want your reply then I would have put something like, "We don't care if you RSVP or not, we like surprises" on the invitations. But I didn't, I said please RSVP and I gave a phone number and an email address.

What is wrong with people?

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

What I learned on hold

I was on hold with the brand new Georgia Aquarium for half an hour yesterday. I stayed on hold as I drove around running errands, thank you Jesus for speaker phones. While on hold I learned that this aquarium is the largest in the world and is currently relocating five Beluga Whales to their new home in Atlanta, GA. I also learned that they have a ballroom that is 16,400 square feet and can fit 1,600 people. The food served at events held in this ballroom is prepared by Wolfgang Puck.

I know this because I heard the same recording 12,347 times. I ask you this...if this is the world's largest aquarium and they charge an arm and a butt cheek to get in, why can't they have some decent hold music for fuck's sake?