Monday, July 26, 2010

Bath to Bed: The Scene in Between

Claire takes bath. Swims around tub until she achieves desired "wrinkle fingers." Screams when she sees mean Mommy coming with the water cup to rinse her hair. Gets out of tub, wrapped in big, fluffy towel, and carried to her room like the princess she is.


"Helps" Mommy rub some Vicks on herself to ease her cold. Mommy rubs small dollop on chest and back. Claire extracts the remainder from the jar and smears it over every inch of her body.

Back to the bathroom to wash VapoRub from her hands. Plays in sink and rubs water all over the rest of her skin.

Brushes teeth and then scrubs arms with toothbrush. Back into bedroom to dry off.

Mommy leaves room to fill humidifier tank. Mommy returns to find Claire digging fingers into the compartment where the vaporizer oil goes.

Back to the bathroom to wash oil from her hands. Dunks herself arm deep in leftover hand soap suds. Back to bedroom to dry off.

Hides in closet and tries on four different pairs of shoes. Dragged out by Mommy to put bedtime diaper on and rest of pajamas.

Drags two books over to read, reads them to Mommy. Mommy says lights out time. Runs over for another book. Mommy turns out lights. Claire not happy.

Claire asks for milk. Mommy says enough milk for today, you may have juice. Claire is not pleased. Screams for milk. Is denied. Angry protests. Mommy responds by putting Claire into the crib. Accepts defeat and the juice.

Claire sings "No More Monkeys Jumping on the Bed" to teddy. Mommy sits in the chair and tries not to fall asleep. Claire yells at the top of lungs for Mommy seven times to make sure Mommy is alert. After eighth time, Mommy goes over to bid Claire goodnight.

Seven "high fives," and a big hug and kiss later, and Mommy exits stage left.

Scene closes.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Name that Tune

I started a music blog. My goal is not to engage an audience; rather, this is a personal journey of music that has somehow affected my life. Feel free to stop by and listen if the mood hits you.

Thursday, July 15, 2010


I am feeling more and more compelled to start a music blog. I could probably even make it private. I honestly am not concerned with a single soul reading it, but sometimes I am so moved by what floods my ears that I feel I need to document it somewhere, if only to announce to myself the effect it had.

So if I choose to do this, feel free to read but it may bore you to death. It will, however, fulfill something unnamed in me that only responds to the song.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Listen! the piano solo on "Leaving a Memory" by Andrea Wellard.


Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Scratch pad: Rain thoughts

Sitting on balcony, dark, listening to rain coming down. Love it.

Left Claire's hair down today after so many days of ponytails. Love studying the curls...wild and beautiful, like her. Shake my head at the glints of gold that sparkle all over it...where did that come from? Two dark-haired parents. Ah, maybe she's who they sing about..."and they sprinkled moondust in your hair...."

Broccoli on her plate untouched tonight, even with the ketchup. Even when I ate it in front of her. Crap. Vegetables are the big hurdle.

Did headstands on the couch while she watched Caillou. She is a live wire, never still. She is flexible, strong, agile. I have no doubt she would be a phenom in gymnastics class. If anyone could lasso her. Too undisciplined for a structured class right now.

They blocked a million Web sites at work today. What bullshit. Can't even pay the daycare bill from there now. Missing my old job so badly. Liking coworkers here (for the most part)but just not connecting with the job. Casually looking at what's out there, but not really pursuing unless something really grabs me. Finding comparable salary will be a challenge.


Feel like You Tube-ing some good music tonight. Teddy Geiger? And maybe some Hem.

Need a spa treatment for my brain.

Should blog soon about this book I'm love with it.


Tuesday, July 6, 2010

The Janitor

Cleanup needed over here. Please send the janitor.

It's a mess here.

Spilled guts.
Emotional bleeding all over.
Shattered dreams strewn about.
Broken heart.

Watch your step. Mop the carnage into a bucket. Buff a smile back on 'til it shines.

Open for business.

Sunday, July 4, 2010


I remember it well
The first time that I saw
Your head around the door
'Cause mine stopped working
"I Remember"...Damien Rice

when you and I are sitting on a blanket on the ground
we are listening to patriotic songs played on violins and cellos
our daughter sits between us
i feel like we are a family
the kind where you don't drop her off at the end of the weekend

i watched you speak to the families sitting in front of us
the smile spread across your face
the one that sucks all the breath from my lungs
i want to be on the other end of that smile

i am not what you want
and when i turn away from my fantasies, i know
i know, i know
we are not what i want

but even still after all that has passed
i know i shall always love you

the orchestra stops.
and then, the fireworks. it's the fireworks i always remember.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

The Chosen Playground

Bar tours? SOOOO yesterday. Nope, the new thing in my middle-aged life is PLAYGROUND tours. Yep, each day after daycare when the weather is agreeable, Claire and I set off to a different playground. We definitely have our favorites---Northwest Park and behind Hannah More School. These are favorites because they have swings. Claire requires swings. A swing-less playground is a half star rating on Claire's Zagat Playground Survey. She's a little high maintenance when it comes to equipment.

So we've been hitting the same four spots this summer, and I decided it was time to shake things up a bit. I did a little Web-based research and came across a playground at the Jewish Community Center in Owings Mills that is open to the public (i.e., Gentiles can enter the premises). So I buckled Claire into the car after daycare and off we went.

I have never been to the JCC (I feel I'm hip enough to use the acronym), and I don't know what I was expecting. But dang, this place was impressive! It gave the impression of a campus. I drove around aimlessly a while looking for the telltale signs of a playground but came up empty. Finally I spotted one behind a tall fence, but the gate was locked. Claire was less than happy at this point.

I was determined to succeed. Like Moses across the desert, I marched onward. I hauled Claire into the main building and asked the nice boy behind the desk where the playground was. Straight down the steps and out the door and he would buzz me in. Buzz me into the playground? Uh, OK. We were let into a fairly boring area with wimpy slides and most importantly, no swings. Claire ran around for a bit but this was way too tame for her. I could tell she couldn't spot anywhere she could potentially climb where she'd risk falling and cracking her head open, so what fun was this? Before I could see what was happening, a couple was leaving the playground with their child, Samara (I know her name because her mother said it every two minutes, obviously proud of her exotic name choice. I didn't have the heart to tell her it sounded like a stripper's alias). All of the sudden Claire squeezed past Samara and took off outside of the playground. Why oh why does my life constantly resemble an "I Love Lucy" skit, with me running like a loon after this little three-foot Wilma Rudolph?

Needless to say, the gate to the playground shut behind me and we were locked out. I had to break the news to Claire, and that realization crept across her face slowly and I assure you, went over like a ton of bricks. At that moment I spotted what looked like a children's kingdom past the pool, and I quickly tried to save face and yanked her over to the pool admission gate. The sullen 15-year-old pool attendant told me we could go back, and off we went to playground #2, buzzed in again, of course.

The "kingdom" turned out to be a large playground constructed entirely of wood and tires. Claire's eyes lit up like Christmas and she began climbing up tire ladders and asking me to help her. All it took was one attempt down a tire ladder where the 2-year-old hops down like an agile bunny and the Mommy trips and falls through a tire hole and I was sidelined. I then started glancing around at the equipment. There were signs everywhere. This one was Noah's Ark. Another apparatus was talking about Rosh Hoshannah. The large covered slide was something about Jonah the Whale. And then there was the kicker, a sandbox shaped like the Star of David. Oy vey!

I suddenly felt like I had two heads, and neither of them were wearing a yarmulke. I noticed a bunch of little kids with t-shirts on with embroidered Hebrew script. The kid on the swing had payot (side curls) and looked unhappy with life. The pre-teens on the tire pile were trying to figure out of Leeza was related to Simon Lieberman. Dorothy, I don't think I'm in Sacred Heart of Glyndon anymore!

All in all, Claire very much enjoyed the hollowed out tire swings as well as eavesdropping on Leeza's conversation with her peeps. I caught myself asking Jesus to protect her on the big slide and wondered if I somehow would be mysteriously knocked in the head by a falling tire. When it was time to leave, we were buzzed through more security gates than the BWI airport and finally were back to our car going home to the Promised Land.

Our next planned stop on the playground tour is at McDonough School...tune in to see if the white trash detector catches me trying to enter the grounds of the exclusive, LaCoste-and-Land Rover school and ejects me into the middle of a Super Walmart.

Either way, Claire and I will keep on swingin'.