Friday, November 11, 2016


And here it is, my favorite picture from our wedding day for my favorite guy on our tenth wedding anniversary.

Thank you for making the past ten years so wonderful. Not perfect—because come on, even if I don't post a lot here anymore, I'm not about to start lying now—but overall pretty darned great. There's no one I'd rather have push my buttons, straighten things I just straightened or make me laugh. And that's the truth.

I love you. I love our life. Here's to us.

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Now I get it

In February we went on a vacation with three other couples. It was a five night stay, so I packed five books. My friends were not pleased. Like, not pleased in the sense that one friend in particular hid a book from me and even wrestled it away from me at one point. If it weren't for the fact that the book was from the public library, I'm pretty sure it would have ended up in the pool. Suffice it to say, I only made it through one book (and some magazines).

Mary Clare discovered chapter books about two months ago, and she is just tearing through them. We drove with my parents to dinner a week ago, and Mary Clare sat in the back next to my dad, with her nose buried in a book the entire time. When we pulled up, my dad said, "Mary Clare, it was great talking to you." She just gave him a confused look and asked, "Where are we?" To which my dad replied, "You are so your mother."

Fast forward to this morning, and I felt both my friends' and my parents' pain. I asked Mary Clare to please put down her book and get dressed. Five times. I then asked her to put down her book so I could do her hair. Five more times. And as I did her hair, she just stared longingly at her book.

"Mary Clare," I said, "I love that you love to read, but we have to figure out a better plan. I don't like asking you multiple times to do things, and you don't like it when I interrupt your reading. Maybe you need to get dressed first, and then you will have all of the time you need to read, uninterrupted."

Huge sigh.

"But Mom, I wake up in the morning, and I just can't wait to read my books. I just see them* and have to have them." She continued, "And then I don't want to put them down. Because I just have to know what happens next."

To which I could only reply, "I know what you mean."

We'll come up with a plan another day.

*We have started removing books from her room at night, both to keep her from reading at night and to encourage her to roll over and go back to sleep at 5:30 a.m., as opposed to getting up and starting to read.

Wednesday, February 10, 2016


Saturday night Mary Clare and Chip went to the Holy Redeemer father-daughter dance, so Charlie and I had some quality time together. We cuddled up on the couch, watched some Inspector Gadget episodes, ate "apples what are cut in slices" and then one of us wore the empty bowl on our head for awhile. (I'll never name names.)

Bedtime came and went, and around 8:30 p.m. I finally convinced Charlie that it was time to hit the hay. As we walked out of the family room, he grabbed onto my leg and nuzzled his head into my side.

"Charlie," I said, "What am I going to do when you aren't my little Charlie Bird any more?"

He stopped, lifted his arms to me and said, "Mama, I'll always be your Bird." 

Well, you better believe I carried those 40 lbs. of sweetness up the stairs. And from room to room as we changed, used the bathroom and brushed teeth. 

The boy has me right where he wants me, and I am completely okay with that. 

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Pets: fake, lost and found

Charlie and Mary Clare have a decent amount of Beanie Boos, the modern day Beanie Babies. While I am admittedly freaked out by their oversized eyes and teeny-tiny bodies, the kids love them. Mary Clare has four that she lines up on the pillow next to her each night, making sure that I tuck the covers up to their chins, the way she prefers to be covered up as well. Charlie, well, he loves them because Mary Clare loves them. And I love that Charlie calls them "Peanie Poos," no matter how many times Mary Clare tries to correct him. And he's not even going for the bathroom humor audience on this one. For once. 

In the living pet world, the kids are obsessed with missing pet flyers. If we are driving along, they beg me to slow down or wait at the stop sign long enough for them to read the flyer. After I get the okay to go, they then proceed to look for said missing animal. And they're serious. We've found two cats so far. Not necessarily the cats that were missing, but we've found two cats. According to Charlie, that is. The other funny thing about this is that if, say, we're about half a mile past the point where we first saw the poster, Mary Clare will suddenly declare, "Okay, you can stop looking now, Charlie. There is no way the cat would have made it this far." I don't bother arguing with her. They have found two cats, after all. 


Sunday, December 20, 2015

At least he wants to be close

Charlie, as you know, is quite the talker. As I worked in his room earlier today, putting away his clean clothes, he started on one of the many streams of consciousness I have come to block out love.

"Mom, do you know that I am stronger than you?" he asked.

"Oh, really? Why do you think you are stronger than me?

"Because," he said, puffing out his chest, "I am strong and you are almost a grandma."

"A grandma," I choked. "Really, you think I am almost a grandma?"

"Yes," he said, a little too matter-of-fact for my taste. "And when you are a grandma, I am going to call you Grandma Debbie."

"Well, that seems like a good name," I said. "Grandma Debbie sounds nice."

And, unfortunately, it did not end there. 

"Mom, what kind of nursing office are you going to live in?" he asked.

"Nursing office? Well, I haven't given it much thought, I must say. Where do you think I should live?"

"Well, I guess you can live in a nursing office close to my house," he said, rather generously. "That way I can still see you a lot."

And talk at me, no doubt.

Wednesday, November 11, 2015


Nine years. Niiiine years. Niiiiine yeaaaaars.

The passing of time is an interesting thing. Like, when it comes to the kids, with each birthday I have small moments of sadness because my babies! They are growing up so fast! And when it comes to my age, I tend to not really care so much, age being just a number and all that jazz. But when it comes to our marriage, I think of the years as an achievement. And also sort of like a drop in the bucket. Like, "Yes, nine years is great ... and we have so many more ahead of us." And I mean that in a good way. I do. (Well, except on the days when I text you DISHWASHER.) Because I do look forward to experiencing life with you. And I appreciate how reassuring it can be to know that no matter what, I have you by my side. 

So here is to nine years, dear husband. You, and you alone, not live-in car maintenance or handy man work, are the reason I married. And I love you. 

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Random is an understatement

This morning when Charlie woke up, he was in a cuddly mood. Some morning he pops right up and is ready to go wake his sister and wreak havoc on the house, and other mornings he is sweet and likes to sit a bit while getting his bearings. This morning was the latter. The pitch-black mornings do have their benefits.

As I plucked him from his bed, he put his head on my shoulder and snuggled in while I opened the blinds. We sat down in the chair, and he asked in the sleepiest voice possible, "Mama, how do you fall in love?"

It was a lot for 6:45 a.m., but I rallied.

"Well," I said, "You meet someone who is kind, and caring, and smart and funny, and because of that, you just want to spend all of your time with them. And they make you happy, and that makes your heart happy." 

"Okay," he responded, and then paused to process this. But not for too long, because a second later, he piped up again. 

"Mama, you are a rocket ship, and we are blasting off into space!" he declared. "And I just tooted on you."