Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Have You Ever Just Ached To Kiss Somebody?

I can hardly believe how badly I want to just hug this little Felix and kiss him till he giggles. I'm a total sucker for a baby in a sweater, and when he's my grandson...I'm weak and ready to jump on a plane tonight. Autumn does this to me, but this is the first time in ages I've actually ached.

Am I a Babysitter, An Au Pair or A Nanny?

Sometimes I just can't sleep. I think my people are hard-wired that way. I hear my daughter talk about it some. I dreamed of a huge river boat run aground then woke to discover I was worried. Ivan's got a report that is due on Friday and I have to get a physical for Auron, like, yesterday. And, now for reasons that completely escape me: Storm is the one who won't go to bed. Well, actually none of them will go to bed, but she used to at least pretend like she was.
Life is good in Chicago.
Everyone seems to be adapting well.
We haven't been asked to leave any public places this week.
And, yet... here I am... wide awake.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

God Lives In The Attic

I chose this image only because I was looking for something a little vintage in an illustration, it's only coincidence that I happen to line up with it politically.
Today's sermon, boys and girls, is all about God.
I've taken this job, y'know, where I've been trusted with the well-being of three young and beautiful children. They are good kids who have done a pretty great job of raising themselves (insofar as any kid can). Their parents have had broken hearts and little time to oversee many of the things that typical parents take for granted.
Not long after I arrived, the 7-year old boy asked me if we could pray that night. He wanted the candles in my room lit, the lights turned off and he wanted us all to kneel Hallmark-card style on the bed with the palms of our hands pressed together and our eyes turned upwards. He'd seen it on a card once and that's the sum total of what he knew about praying.
So, I taught them the "God Blesses" portion of prayer....God bless mommy and God bless daddy...and all the way down the line till God had properly blessed Pikachu.
Then we moved on to formal requests, "God, please help me be a good boy tomorrow and tell no lies and not hit my brother..." Those were shorter than the "God Blesses" and stopped short of "God, please let me eat as much candy tomorrow as I want."
And, we were almost done, and my trusty 7-year old companion said, "Does God live in the attic?" And, I kind of crooked my head to the side, in that "I'm not sure what you mean" kinda way. And he held his pose and pointed to his up-turned eyes. He shrugged his shoulders and explained that every picture he'd ever seen of somebody praying, they were always looking up. And, up is the attic, ergo: God lives in the attic.
This was the precise moment where I decided that I was raised as a Christian, and to stay true to my (albeit, loosely woven) beliefs, I had to start some kind of God and heaven and angels dialog with these kids.
Today they attended their first church service. It was actually their first church ever for anything, I think. And it went well. And there was this amazing African-American woman preacher who was ALL over it. The net out of her sermon today was to follow your heart.
I cried.
Yea. I'm a total emotional bomb. Ask anybody who's ever married me or been raised by me.
But, I think I'm doing the right thing here, and I'm more sure than ever that God probably does live in the attic....

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Dell Computers

Kids, Get comfy: tonight's diatribe is all about Dell.
Dell computers are the modern-day Samsonite.
I swear. Seriously.

This little Dell Lattitude (not so much the one in that picture, mine is old enough to show up in sepia tone) that I work with now has been passed through 2 whole other humans before it reached me. I've called it "My little dinosaur" and plenty of other less nice things. But, the bottom line is that it has been a work horse.

On one of my first nights with it, I carefully took it out of it's bag, plugged it in, went to just move it a little to the right and promptly dropped it on it's head from about 3 feet up. Yep. Hardwood floors. I think I screamed like a pink-panty-wearing girl.
It immediately fired right back up and has subsequently taken me anywhere and everywhere I want to go.

Kudos, Dell.

While that, all by it's self, is plenty cool.... Today I saw a re-enactment of that commercial Samsonite ran during the 70s. An extremely determined and hefty 3-year-old (not terribly unlike that gorilla they used for their commercials) slammed it closed (I know that sound from, like, a mile away) then threw it on the ground and jumped up and down on it.

For real.
I'm going against all my natural instincts and NOT exaggerating here.
He had all of about 45 seconds to do with it what he would/could, before I could drop the pot of hot soup I was serving up for dinner and make it the 20 feet to my room.
My little (smack-talked) dinosaur was disconnected and upside down on the floor and Auron (the afore mentioned 3-year old) was in mid-air just above it. I think I screamed something like, "Heeeeey! What are you doing?!?!" and he lost his stride and fell on the computer (with all of his 46 frenzied pounds).
All of this happened in slow motion, like one of those Kneau Reeves movies.
He did, indeed get something of a butt swat. Immediately followed up with some serious Time Out. But, less than 10 words from point A to point B (because I've heard that's the most words you get at that moment in time.)

I didn't cry even though it seemed like the most prudent reaction.

I finished serving dinner.
He wailed like an eviscerated racoon.

Dinner was great.

And, the computer is just fine.

So, Dell - Good job, dude! You'd'man.

If you're ever looking for some marketing ideas on your product's amazing fortitude, just call me.

I'm in the market for a new computer (as I was way before tonight's fun) and I can just about guarantee you I'll be buying a new Dell.

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Elections and Arguments.

With a little less than a month till the election I am officially done trying to match wits with the witless. If somebody chooses to believe that we will be well-served by electing someone based on one small part of their platform, then so be it.
If those same people aren't invested enough to do their research, then I will be the girl with no opinion. I am left to wonder, however, if perhaps a little less time with reality TV and a little more time with factual research wouldn't be a better way to plant hope in the future.
Democracy is only as valuable as the people who help shape it. I know we are at a crossroads in the country and all I can do now is hope and believe.
Research could well be the one useful tool to bring about significant change. So, do your research and, I promise not to say "I told you so" if things don't work out like they ought to.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Still Being Hopeful

As election day draws nearer and nearer I find myself logging some long hours talking politics with people I never expected to talk politics with (the girl at the grocery, that Middle-East guy at the 7-11 and friends I have known for years who never gave any indication that they even cared.)
I could be an alarmist and launch an all-out attack on the misinformation that we are presented with but I have chosen to adopt a more personal approach and just try to persuade anybody I can that now is (seriously) the time for change.
We have to vote.
We cannot afford another moment of the same choices that we've seen for the last 8 years.
To ability to vote is one of the only super-human powers that we have left.
And, as always, it falls to us to use our powers for good - not evil.
Think about it.