I write down things my kids say every day. Sometimes I add them to my words here or elsewhere and sometimes they stay on wrinkle-softened scraps of paper in my coat pocket until they churn in the wash or blow through a parking lot while I fetch my keys.
I found one, a sentence I’d added to my ‘notes’ in my phone sometime a few weeks ago at a stoplight in downtown Missoula, when Margot cut through the monotonous din of NPR news.
“When I die will my heart still beat?”
“Nope. Your heart won’t beat,” I replied. “When you die every part of your body stops working.”
“What happens after that?”
“I don’t know. What do you think happens?”
“Nothing. Or we go way down in the earth, buried. Or way far away. Or something.”
I sent off my last crate of packages today. Oh man, the proud relief I feel! It was like acing my final college exam before the expansive sea of summer vacation. Over the next few days we will prepare our home to receive loved ones, throw a solstice sledding birthday party (Margot turned 5 (!!!) yesterday) and get our own gifts finished and mailed.
Last week I was wishing I had another few days this month so I could melt into the gift-making and giving process that I don’t want to hurry (or, more importantly, hurry my kids through). But now I see I have time. I have today anyway. There’s no hurry, no urgency if I choose it to be so. And so, I made that choice.
This means some things I wanted to do aren’t happening. And this means I am only valuing what is happening. Because, for real, the way we live today is all that matters. Every day.
We made gingerbread cookie dough weeks ago. Despite our efforts to make hoards of cookies in one day, the actual cookie-making has been happening in fits and spurts ever since the initial dough-making. We slice off a piece of that refrigerated wad and cut out armies of bats, moose and men. Or, as Ruby so accurately questioned, why them always men? Be still my feminist heart. Oh girl, good question. Let us make a force of gingerbread women and give them equal pay and maternity leave.
Our friend’s grandma’s recipe:
We then, our threesome, have been delivering cookie cheer as we can.
Ruby: You know what Margot? Bears are wild.
Margot: Yes, Ruby. And they are hibernating right now.
Ruby: Us not like bears right?
Margot: Well I sure do. As long as they don’t eat me.
Ruby: When us go out into the woods, mommy always bring a backpack. In case us hike up the hill and see a bear, us go on mama’s back. We be ok.
^^^^Yes!!! We have a new cat in our home. We are fostering this awesome yellow dude, with the intent to adopt. And, we will happily accept name ideas. He’s totally in.
Margot: Mom, you know what’s awesome about grandmas? They let you have whatever you want.
This photo taken over a late-night Go Fish game. In this week’s mamalode column I wrote about Go Fish. I see the big, grown things coming but, right now, these marathon card rounds are my milestone. Click to read mama digs: Go Fish.
Ruby: Mom, I have a great idea.
Me: What’s that?
Ruby: I like you.
Looking forward to these last few weeks of 2012. Looking forward to 2013. I think we’re headed good places. We start from home.
ps LOCALS! Tomorrow: Come on down to Walking Stick for an evening of shopping (deals from me (dig) and Erika (Walking Stick)!), radness (libations and nice people!) and cheer (live music!). I’ll be there and would love to see you. 7pm. xo