Monday, June 30, 2008

The Best Game Ever

We are fully engrossed in the game of hide-and-seek these days at the Magical Mansion. Morning, noon and night we play this game with abandon.

It is the . . . perfect . . . game!

Last night J hid on top of our bed with some pillows over him. It took Peanut One a few minutes to find him, but then he promptly decided it was a great spot and hid under the covers.


For 10 more minutes Peanut Two searched and searched.

"Where's Daddy?" is all I heard from downstairs.

Finally I went up to help the poor girl. She tore past the bed for the umpteenth time looking anywhere but up. I think she even saw him a few times, but loved the search so much she wasn't ready to give it up.

In the meantime J got a 15 minute rest.

Gotta love the magic!

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Wishing for Bea

I miss my Grandma today.

It's odd. The past year I have missed her so much and so often that my heart aches. While she is still alive, she has not known who I am for over ten years. It's hard even to put a finger on when the dementia started, but at the time I didn't realize how painful it could become.

I miss knowing her as I am now. I want to ask her questions and learn about her life in ways I couldn't even comprehend as a teenager or young adult. I want to hear her stories and learn history from her perspective. I want to see her smile and know she really sees me.

I want her to hold my children and understand they are hers too.

I'm not sure where the magic is in all of this. It is quite hard to see.

All I know is that I miss Grandma Bea with a rich sadness today.

Friday, June 27, 2008

I'm in Awe

A year ago, my brother embarked on an ambitous project. As an author, he challenged himself to write a short(ish) story every other week for a year. He publishes them on his website and blogs about the writing process.

Yesterday he published his final story.

I am incredibly proud of him and constantly impressed with what he can accomplish with his words.

Try this if you are thinking about a summer romance.

Try this if you recently had a baby.

Try this if you want something a little creepy.

And try this if you want to read an amazing book
that evolved in series over the course of this year.

While I know he worked too hard to call what he did magic, I think in some ways it is. He can't help but turn his musings into art. It feels like something bigger to me. Something magical.

Congratulations jd!

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Social Skilz

Peanut One has always been a bit slow to warm up. Even at 6 months old, when I gathered with other mom friends, he just wanted to sit in my lap. No wriggling, no rolling, no crawling - he just wanted to watch from a safe space.

As I find myself doing, I often fell into the FOR THE REST OF HIS LIFE mode, thinking, worrying, fretting that he would be this way FOR THE REST OF HIS LIFE.

Now that he is older, I realize the grain of truth in it all. He won't be the most outgoing kid when he first meets people, but he'll make it work.

(Hello . . . apple not falling far from the tree here. . .)

Yet, whenever I see him making in-roads with his social skills I get a little proud and teary eyed.

After play school today, he saw a group of kids running around outside. Instead of sticking with me and heading to the car, Peanut One ran after them calling out and engaging in their play. I watched with joy as he made his own way in the group.

When I called him to go, he pushed my proud-oh-meter even further up by heading over to one of the boys to say good-bye.

Unfortunately the boy didn't respond.

Strangely he must not have heard Peanut One wave good-bye behind his back.

'What will my social butterfly do next?' I wondered.

Need I be suprised?

He promptly head-butted him and ran away.

Oh so proud.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Hello Me

Call me nuts, but I've started writing about and to my future self. I do believe this is transforming my life. No joke.

I imagine who I will become and what my life will be like down the road. I imagine what I will be feeling, thinking, seeing, hoping. Then I write. I write as if it is real and I write with no censorship. Then I close my notebook and put it away.

Sometimes I ask her questions:

Should I take this new job?
Should I try to repair a fractured relationship?
What is really important to focus on?

She answers.

Not in a crazy, I hear voices kind of way. But if I still my soul I hear the answer:

Either path will lead you here.

You've done enough for now.

Love and joy, love and joy.

I've gotten to the point where I see her and can sense her reflecting back on this time in my life. It is absolutely incredible.

Try it.

It's magic.

Monday, June 23, 2008

Magic in the Moment

Peanut Two has started packing a bag before we go out. She carefully puts her necklaces, cars, toys du jour and, of course, Bunny into her little pig back-pack. She tenaciously zips the bag, only allowing for help at the very end, and then she's "ready to go, Mommy".

With J away for four days last week, I found myself a little stressed about getting the Peanuts out the door the other morning. In a quest to keep the assembly-line efficiency barely controlled chaos moving, I didn't fully zip the bag and left Bunny's head sticking out. My ever evolved reasoning was that when we got to the car I could easily grab Bunny as I knew Peanut Two would want to hold it.

Bad idea.

Peanut Two threw a fit as Peanut One watched with glee.

I tried to reason with her through my gritted teeth gently that the car was 20 feet away, bunny would be getting out soon, bunny needed some fresh air. . .

I got sucked in.

It was one of those parenting moments where the magic of Peanut Two's reality was a good lesson for me.


Slow down.

It doesn't matter what is next.

Peanut Two lives in the moment.

It's magic.

Friday, June 20, 2008

Summer Solstice

Yesterday was the Summer Solstice for us up here in the Northern Hemisphere.

I heard that the magic of nature is strongest on this day.

Did you feel it?

Moan Into Moon

I am absolutely, 100%, no fun when I am woken up in the middle of the night. Just ask J, who has been said to walk with the grace of an elephant, what the wrath of Magic Woman feels like at midnight!

Suffice it to say I am very unhappy that a few of our neighbors have gotten new dogs that seem to bark the loudest and longest at night . . .

. . . late at night . . .

. . . seemingly right outside our window.

It has been hard to tell which house the rowdy pups live in, so last night after being awoken with their shrill yapping I stumbled outside to get a sense of direction. My plan was to locate the offending dogs and (during the day) politely let their owners know that it would be oh so neighborly if they kept the dog rumpus inside when most of the neighborhood is sleeping.

I stepped onto the patio and looked around and was transfixed. It was beautiful outside. The moon was almost full, the air a cool relief from the heat of the day and the weight of full bloom summer foliage shimmering magically around me.

Suddenly I understood the barking. The dogs felt the magic too.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Oh My, Oh My, Oh No!

At one point during his second year, Peanut One started throwing paint all around. Whenever he painted you had to duck and cover because you never knew where it was going to go.

After a few colorful episodes we somehow realized that he was copying the 'dinosaurs bad' in Sandra Boynton's Oh My, Oh My, Oh Dinosaurs. (For those who don't know, the picture of 'dinosaurs bad' is of those little rascals throwing paint.) With much explanation about why we don't want to be bad dinosaurs - and much to the relief of the Magic Mom - the paint throwing ceased.

Fast forward two years.

Last night I was reading Peanut Two some bedtime stories. She desperately wanted to read a certain book, but I couldn't understand what she was saying. I tried my hardest to understand -

Drs owe it?
Die seer toe ate?
Delores sews pant?

Suddenly the light bulb went off -


I think we're in for a colorful summer!

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

A Mole Full of Love

I met my husband, J, almost nine years ago at a bar in Atlanta. Now with a courtship, a wedding, two kids, a house and a few job transitions under our belt it is sometimes hard to remember what I felt like when we met.

To be honest, as someone who relishes and craves alone time and a space of my own, I have to admit I'm still adjusting to having a constant 'roommate'. Yet, as I reflect on our early times together and remember the excitement, the wonder and the elation, I do believe it was magic that we met.

Of course the coincidences float back sometimes:

* Neither of us frequented the place we met prior to the fateful night.

* As we got to know each other, it was apparent we had been at many of the same parties and events.

* Stranger was that his family (a solid Midwestern bunch) were avid Yankees fans - a plus for a girl from Jersey.

* It was even odd that my mother said he reminded her of her father - a man who died when I was very young.

Yet this morning as I was getting ready I caught my back in the mirror and saw the true reminder. I happen to have a big ol' mole on my back. It's not something I was especially fond of in my life - if it had been on my front side I probably would have removed it.

But J has an exact replica on his back.

I know you are thinking . . . yikes . . . she sees moles as a sign of fate . . . what's up with this gal?

But it is true - whenever I see one of our moles I am reminded of my connection to J and oddly wonder if our children will grow up with a similar, physical expression of their link to us and our love.

I do believe it is magic. . .

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

So it begins . . .

I have been inspired by a magnificent woman who always asks me questions that stop my mind from racing and bring me back to reality.

She asks me to tell her about enchanted moments from my past.

She urges me to walk with the little girl still alive and eager inside.

She teaches me to speak with my future self, the woman I am becoming.

She absorbs my petulance, my stubbornness, my fears and my woes
without breaking a stride.

She shows me how angels have followed me around
my entire life:
protecting, guiding and watching.

She encourages me to turn my life into a magical reality.

So it begins . . .