Posts Tagged With: Spring

Songs and Rain


It’s a strange combination of spring and winter in California right now.  The Roger’s Red, which I measure the seasons by, has begun sprouting silvery leaves again.  The lavender is blooming in my front bed, and the giant Maple in the front yard is all dappled with fresh green leaves as well.  But it has been raining a dreary drizzle for days now.

It reminds me of the winters when I was a child.  Our house was mostly windows back then, and the loudness of the rain falling made you feel like you were out in it while simultaneously being able to cuddle up under a fluffy comforter with a book.  Sadly, I can no longer cuddle up under anything and expect to read.  I have a small boy who needs constant holding and attention.  He already grabs my phone when I’ve been reading on my kindle app too much.

He’s surprisingly coordinated now.  Meaning that when he tries to put things in his mouth he gets them within an inch of his target, hitting his cheeks or his nose most times.  That isn’t what I would call coordinated at all a few months ago, but the fact that he could reach for something and grab it was a revelation, let alone put it mostly where he wants it.  He’s like a little birdy with his mouth, too, opening it wide for a pacifier, a plush toy, a fist, or a nipple.  He’s putting the whole world in his mouth.

I have discovered that if you put me alone in a room with a small child long enough, what results is silly songs.  I’ve been singing “He’s got the whole world in his mouth” to the tune of “whole world in his hands.” You can substitute the verse for whatever he’s currently eating.  “He’s got his mother’s knuckle in his mouth,” is a popular one.  So is “the sleeve of his onesie,” and “his green knit blanket.” But really you can substitute almost anything.  We’ve been trying to avoid “the sudsy washcloth” with more success than not.

I also have been singing him this song, to the tune of “I Hate to Get Up In The Morning.”  It’s based on true events.

Oh how I hate to get up in the morning/ oh how I’d love to remain in bed/ But when your son pees on all your fancy clothes/ you’ve got to launder all of those/ Or spend the rest of your life na-ked. 

Add that to the bevvy of things we’ve all pulled out of nowhere to sing him, and he’s going to have the strangest musical vocabulary ever.  Brian sings him “I Feel Pretty,” (he likes the “la, la, las,”) and my mother has been singing him the theme song to Daniel Boone.  I’ve been singing him Alan Sherman tunes amid musicals, hits from the 40’s and 50’s, girl scout camp stuff, and my own silliness.  He babbles back with smiles.

It’s harder being home with a kid than it logically should be.  I mean, feeding, changing, and playing aren’t theoretically difficult things, it’s just that they never end.  But being home with him is also more rewarding than I expected.  All I need is to launch into a version of “Look to the Rainbow” and feel this kid snuggle into my chest to feel like it’s all worth it.  Maybe days of bedding down in the rain with a book just got more social…

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It’s St. Patrick’s Day here, which is mostly a holiday to drink beer and/or pinch people depending on your age.  I don’t really like beer, nor will I be pinching any of my new workmates, so I think I’ll just celebrate by eating some corned beef and cabbage.  I have been kissed this morning, but not specifically because I’m Irish.  Brian probably needs to do it again until he gets it right.  I am wearing the requisite green, and maybe you could argue that my brown belt is orange-ish for Northern Ireland, where my family is from (yeah, it’s a stretch).

I feel like I’ve been living in holiday world lately.  First it was Pi day, 3/14.  Which, if you really want a reason to binge on pie, is a lot like 3.14, which is the first three digits of the mathematical symbol Pi.  I was listening to the cashier at the grocery store try to explain this to another woman in line, and she was totally unaware.

“Geometry or Algebra?” she said.

“Geometry,” I piped in.  “It’s for calculating circle stuff.”

“Oh.  I’m not good at math,” she said.

“It’s mostly just a great excuse to eat large quantities of pie,” I said.  I didn’t mention that I’m also pretty terrible at math.  I can tell you what Pi is, just don’t ask me to use it for anything.

She laughed.

After Pi Day is the Ides of March.  Which is a holiday to post bad Caesar/stabbing puns.  And today the rivers of Boston are running green.   I’ll wish you a happy Palm Sunday and a happy Spring Solstice this weekend, and next we can all wish each other a happy Easter.

Who ever said there aren’t enough holidays in the world?  You just have to be willing to celebrate the weird ones, I guess.

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Those Summer Tomatoes


Life feels pretty frantic right now.  Spring came to California overnight, it seems.  The tree in my front yard has gone from bare to bright green in just a few days.  The neighbor’s plum tree is flowering white.  The Roger’s Red Grape is budding with tiny silver leaves.

Spring (of course) means gardens, and garden goals include summer tomatoes in my house.  That is non-negotiable.  Home grown tomatoes are the one produce item that are nothing at all like the store bought version.  California summers get CRAZY hot, though, and in Redlands it is even worse than I am used to.  The advice for tomato planters in a hot climate?  Plant early and you will have a crop before the hot comes.  They recommend February.

When did it get to be almost March, you guys?

I put the tomatoes in the front planter last year to thwart the gophers, but now it has ornamental stuff in it.  Brian and I regrouped, and we’ve decided that if we put our veggies in raised beds in the back, we can line them with chicken wire and hopefully keep the gophers out.  Which means that we need raised beds STAT, or we won’t have a crop.  We bought the redwood boards, fought with the battery on the drill, and still didn’t quite get the planter built.  Next weekend for sure.  I have the compost, we have the dirt, and those tomatoes will be.

I am determined.

It’s the tomato plants that are indeterminate (you see what I did there?  It’s a tomato joke.  It was funny.  No, really).

Now I just have to decide what tomato varieties to plant… and frantically plant them so they can grow in time.

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Weekly Round Up

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This week has kicked my butt.  I’m not exactly sick.  It’s like I never got to the “can’t get out of bed so I get to rest and watch terrible videos all day” stage.  I just went straight to the “mild headache, with mucus in Technicolor” stage.  I’ve been sucking it up and going to work anyway.  I took some Dayquil the first few days, but I forgot about Dayquil.  I always feel like I’m seeing out of too many eyes and my brain can’t quite make the links I want it to, even though it’s making most of them.  So now I’m just suffering in silence and drinking as much liquid as possible.  Hot tea for the win.  And I’m much better than I was on Monday.  I’m sure I’ll be fine soon.

I blame my misery on the weather.  I like the rain.  I like the sunshine.  But when the day swaps back and forth from pouring to shining, to pouring while shining, it does a number on my sinuses.  And it all happened mid-day, too, which meant no pretty rainbows to make up for it.

I have learned this week that there’s an award for the book with the oddest title each year.  Among those currently in the running are “Nature’s Nether Regions,” and “Divorcing a Real Witch: For Pagans and the People that Used to Love Them.”  I think those two are gonna be neck-in-neck.

Spring has come to Redlands.  I pointed out the spring-green bits on the top of the giant tree in our front yard, and Brian groaned.  “It starts…” he said.  “All those leaves to pick up next Fall.”  I’m thinking instead about the lovely deep green it turned last summer, and all the cool shade we got.  The neighbor’s plum tree lops over a bit into our yard and I can see the white blossoms through my bedroom window.  The Roger’s Reds went from looking like twisted dead twigs to sprouting little silver leaves no bigger than a dime.  I have a feeling the yard is going to start looking closer to how I want it to look in no time.

The kitten has decided that we’re writing buddies.  Or rather, that she wants me to stop writing and be buddies.  She has eaten two of the cloth bookmarks tethered to my Moleskine notebooks, skittering around the table after them.  When she realized that wasn’t working, she attempted to sit on the notebook.  When I still didn’t stop scribbling, she sat on my hand.  My aunt is in the middle of a house re-do and she gave me a tiny desk with an adjustable sloping top.  The kitten doesn’t understand why the surface isn’t flat.  There has been much snuffling, some climbing and sliding, and a bit of trying to climb underneath the mechanism.    She’s SUCH a problem.  But I wouldn’t have it any other way.  Her problematic mannerisms are what make me love her so much; and that deep, throaty purr of hers.

The last news this week is that 2015 might be just as filled with babies as 2014.  First set of friends just announced they’re having a girl.  I’ll go get out the crochet hook…

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Spring Slump

These last few weeks have been rather depressing, really. At least that’s how I feel in this immediate second. I know that I don’t really have much to complain about, and my current desire to whine is probably tied to the way my sleep-deprived brain functions on improbable amounts of sugar. Somehow that does not seem to help me feel any better.

People talk about winter as being the time when the blues set in, but for me it is usually the spring. Allergies attack, duties pile up. Before I know it, I am drowning in the desire to lay on the couch and watch embarrassing television for weeks. I consider this year a bit of a victory, because I didn’t completely sabotage my grades during the annual Spring Slump. It’s a small victory, but I’ll take it. I seem to be getting better at battling this with age.

I did a lot of writing this week that I was proud of; a piece on how feminism has failed me, and an impressive cover letter. The computer dumped them both. They don’t exist anywhere. I’ve re-created the cover letter, but I haven’t had the heart to re-create the other.

I shall close this out by resolving to get more sleep and be a cheerful girl tomorrow. Or as soon as I can.

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