[Quiet Thoughts] Find Some Comfort

Photo: Custom-ordered Buttercream cake with image on it and raspberry filling for under $30 at Wegmans!? Um… new favorite grocery store.

Lordy, dear reader! Is it 8 o’clock? How did that happen?

I am learning that part of the bylaws of suburban-with-small-children living is that “all social events should be held on Friday afternoon/evenings.” Even the ones that you schedule. This is the second Friday in a row where my whole day has been filled to the brink with stuff.

To be sure, this one was my own doing: Ursa Major’s postponed birthday bash was this afternoon. I was all sorts of a mess getting everything together for it, but once we were there, it was pretty golden. Children had a blast. Mamas got some time to relax. The Husband… was not engaged, because there weren’t any guys there and he’s shy, but he seemed to enjoy watching the children romp around. It was good times. Ursa Minor, especially, really enjoyed himself.

Hm? Why was I mess before the party? Well, I had to get to the store to prepare for yet another foot and a half of snow coming this weekend. (I am, in half seriousness, considering stepping in front of the nearest fast-moving bus.) Also, I needed to get the cake and make the goody bags, and drop off and pick up little boys, and also make time for my husband to go to Home Depot because this:

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Yup. The faucet on the kitchen sink had decided to go a little sideways. Which is cool, because I came up with a very subtle and functional temporary fix for it. Everything was fine. But then The Husband had to roll up on it  with his tools and his engineering skills and be all “Husband fix!”  Well… he didn’t fix. He made it worse.

“We have to replace the faucet. In the meantime, I have to turn off all the hot water in the entire house because there is no shut-off valve for that particular part of the plumbing.”

There were tense and terse conversation between husband and wife in this house last night… much communication needed to be made around wants, needs, procedures and  protocol… but the point is, the faucet is fixed. And the kitchen is clean. And I’m clean. And the coffee maker is scheduled to run in the morning.

And all of that is a comfort, which is what I have to hold on to right now. Because it doesn’t matter how much I bitch and moan, right now the universe has decided that it will snow in Massachusetts every 6 days.

So I want to reflect on some good that happened this week:

Ursa Major has started to use the potty without my prompting. This child came up the stairs for nap time yesterday and performed the entire potty process on his own without me saying anything to him! It was a miracle! It was one of those mommy moments where I didn’t know what had happened until after it had happened! This has happened twice, which is pretty phenomenal. Remember a few months ago when I thought he’d be wearing diapers on his 18th birthday? Welp. We’ve achieved a new milestone of awesome here! I’m not calling it mastery yet, but I’m saying that we’re on the road to greatness.

Both children got out of the bed this morning, gave me a big hug and a kiss and told me they love me. This is a big deal. Let me tell you why: Ursa Minor loves to be in my lap or be carried or what not, but he rarely verbally expresses his affection. Ursa Major, as you know, has been running away from me since he realized that he got up on his two feet. Both of them have been very cuddly lately, but even better, they’ve both shown me a lot of affection and appreciation. Lots of “please,” and “thank you,” without prompting, lots of “I love you” or even “this is delicious” or “I like this,” as surprising moments… It brings me this feeling that I don’t quite have language for.

I did some great cooking this week:


I was bored and hungry yesterday, so I made my favorite pizza dough and decided we were going to have pizza. A whisper came to me: “What would happen if you put that dough in the cast iron skillets?” Hmmm… why the hell not? Well, half-way through the rise, I realized that I had used the last of my store-bought bottled pizza sauce. Holy crap, what do I do? 1 can of tomato paste, 1 can of stewed tomatoes with garlic/oregano/onion into my food processor. A little bit of extra garlic (I eat garlic like it’s my job) and italian seasoning… boom. Best pizza sauce ever. I’ll never buy store bought again. And while, yes, they aren’t pretty pizzas, they were absolutely tasty! Mmm… gooey cheese…

Oh. And I made some honey-glazed fried chicken on Wednesday that was awesome.

My diet really needs to start March 1st…

I’m 2/3rds of the way done with my quilt top:



So… I realized, as I was putting this together, that I didn’t actually make enough squares. I have enough of the 9-block tiles, but those little 3-piece ones? Yeah… I didn’t make enough. I made 8 of each when I needed 16. Math was… never my strong suit. I don’t actually know how I did that. So, when I’m done with this, I’m off to cut some more.

People are kickin’ it old school with the gifts for Ursa Minor: Throwback to two of my favorite things!

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Did anyone else play Crocodile Dentist as a kid!? Love this game! The boys were skeptical at first, but then enjoyed themselves. Get. This. Game!

And then THIS!!!



What!? I haven’t THOUGHT about the Frog and the Toad in a very, very long time. But I do remember the stories and I loved them when I was younger. Weird, yes… but still. I’m so excited to own this little collection! Ursa Major wasn’t half as excited as I was when he pulled the wrapper off of this thing!

My children are happy. They’ve been happy all week. My house is functional. Not clean, but functional. It’s warm. That’s what matters. We’re well fed (obviously), we’re loved, we were gracious hosts. I accomplished all of the needs and even some of the wants this week. The snow, while inconvenient, didn’t hinder any of that. My sanity, while maybe hanging by a thread on Wednesday, is intact today. It was a good week, dear reader. These are the things that I choose to hold on to, because these are the things that will warm me through this trying winter cycle.

What comforts will you seek, dear reader, in these teasing days when the sun rays reach us, but are too weak to warm, and the light stays longer but the mercury stays low? I wish you the comfort of heat, sweet and smokey, given by a fireplace. I wish you tea with a bit of honey and maybe some orange to make you think of warmer climates and the people lucky enough to live there. I wish you tender meat in a dutch oven, roasting low and slow for hours, making your house smell heavenly. Or, maybe, a brilliant bowl of miso soup or pho, brothy, intense and yet nuanced and beautiful. I wish you a soft blanket and loving arms to wrap around you. I wish you socks around you toes (bonus, of course, if they are crafted by skilled and loving hands you know!). I wish you the brilliant and slow burn of love and desire for a person worthy of your affection. Tell them you love them, not once, but twice this weekend, yeah?

Until Monday, stay warm and take care.

2 Comments Add yours

  1. Lots of laughs today my friend. What an excellent start to a well-deserved weekend for me. It was also good to see you have some wonderful befall you rather than just more snow!

  2. Marneymae says:

    Frog & Toad are the BEST!!
    And those pizzas look amAzing
    A bow to you & all that you do

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