By Mir
February 16, 2017

So it’s been about a month since I wrote here. Honestly, it only felt like a couple of weeks, which is weird, because in our new dystopian reality, every single day feels like a month, lately. Still, I knew I’d been remiss when my father called me to make sure I was still alive. When I go Dad-wondering-if-I-still-exist many days between writing, that’s when I’ve been a jerk. Er, a bigger jerk than normal.

Hi, Dad! I’m alive!

This is the part where I tell you how thrilling my life has been that I just haven’t had a SINGLE MOMENT to come here and detail it for you, what with the EXCITEMENT and DIRE IMPORTANCE of it all. And I would totally do that if I’d been doing anything that fit that criteria, but still I am mostly reading news, listening to news, and waiting for the sky to fall. Turns out that that takes up a crazy amount of time.

A few other things have happened in the interim as well, but mostly the news-and-panicking stuff. And baking. DON’T FORGET THE BAKING, because the only thing better than being certain that the world is ending is being certain that the world is ending but you probably should have some cookies, first.

And so I present to you a brief summary of the Very Exciting Things Which Happened of the last month or so:

1) Vroom vroom vroom.
Monkey drives! Sort of. Mostly. Under duress, and often while complaining loudly, but! Still! I make him drive me around and the goal of him getting his license just in time to move to the city and never drive seems well underway. If he does well, it’s because he’s figuring it out. If he has an issue, well, it’s probably my fault. (I told him the wrong thing or I was unclear or I am otherwise a big meaniepants.) My car remains in one piece and his driving is just fine, plus I sold a kidney and a nice professional instructor comes to the house and takes him out for a few hours every week.

2) Underwater basket weaving chronicles.
Remember when we used to joke about how you could go to college and take underwater basket weaving? No? Just me? Well, Chickadee’s college does not offer underwater basket weaving, ALAS. However, they do have an intramural innertube water polo league. Which my kid joined, because I don’t even know who she is anymore. (Me: “You know that’s a SPORT, right?” Her: “Yeah, I was surprised, too.”) She is also doing all sort of other collegiate things I never imagined her doing, and from my vantage point over here (being filled in over FaceTime, watching her Snapchat stories and following her Instagram) it is fascinating to behold. This weekend we are headed down to a basketball game because I hear there’s an awesome purple-haired kid in the pep band. Also it’s possible that said kid sent me a list of things she “needs” (wants) which I will supply because Mom Is A Sucker And Misses Her Baybee.

3) It’s a dog’s life.
Licorice and Duncan continue to be ridiculous. I don’t know how I lived my life before dogs, for they are truly the key to keeping perspective on all things. I’m an incredibly anxious person. Years of therapy and medication have gotten me to where it’s manageable, mostly. Know what the best antidote to anxiety is? Watching two small dogs LOSE THEIR MINDS when you sit down with a bowl of popcorn. I’m just saying. Furthermore, time passes and the dogs get overgrown and even MORE ridiculous, and then I get them groomed. When I say to the groomer, “Maybe a little shorter over their eyes, this time?” they come back looking even sillier than usual. I can’t quite put my finger on it, but…

4) There are no small roles, only small actors.
I decided to audition for a play, because I can barely remember my own name and am not working nearly enough and there’s laundry that’s been sitting in a basket for the last three weeks right next to the bed. (Logic is my strong suit.) Anyhoo! I auditioned, and now I have a teeny tiny part in a fun show which possibly mumble mumble actually okay yes definitely requires me to take my clothing off on stage. ART! Also, I have been eating my feelings since the election (mmmmm, delicious feelings) so HOOBOY WOW what a good time to work on that whole loving your body no matter what thing. HA. HAHA. OH GOD. (Brb, doing 100 push-ups and then crying.)

5) Romaaaaaaaance!
The other night, Otto and I were trying to plan a little getaway for just the two of us. We’re coming up on our 10th anniversary, y’know, and save for the whirlwind trip to the mountains right after we got married (during which—I love to remind him—I had a terrible cold and basically slept or coughed the entire time), we have not really managed much in the way of a couple’s getaway. We had juuuust about agreed on a time/plan for spring break when we realized that… I will have play rehearsal all that week. Good job, me! And then as we tried to buoy our mood upon realizing this, Monkey called from upstairs that he needed some help. We went from planning a vacation to all three of us on hands and knees on the carpet trying to locate an eyeglass screw that had gone rogue in a matter of minutes. Our marriage in a nutshell, really. (The screw was never recovered. I found a spare, and the glasses were repaired, and we still aren’t going on vacation, but Otto is still my favorite.)

6) End of an era.
This week we had our last IEP meeting EVER. Ever ever ever. I did not dance on the table, but the temptation was strong. Instead I baked cookies and giggled involuntarily every time someone said, “Next year when he’s in college.” Monkey—superior self-advocate—ate a lot of cookies and corrected his case manager every time he misspelled something on the document (which was projected onto a screen for our scrutiny). I will not miss those meetings. I suspect Monkey will miss the cookies.

7) Food, glorious fooooooood.
I can spend an inordinate amount of time cooking, it turns out. And baking. And EATING. I do enjoy eating. Ahem. Did I mention that my husband got me a sous vide for Christmas? He did. Now my new favorite hobby is putting food in bags and them sous vide-ing them. Because MAGIC! We had a flank steak that was like eating butter. But meat. Meat butter? It was delicious, is my point. Also I am gearing up to do a comparison of some meal delivery services for Alpha Mom, which means we are getting various boxes of stuff and I’m making concoctions I wouldn’t, otherwise, and I enjoy it entirely too much. (See also: “I do enjoy eating.”) Last night we had seared salmon with charred lemons and beet risotto. Fancy! Food is another good way to think a little less about politics.

Speaking of: I answered a question at Alpha Mom about helping kids speak out at school when… current events are not bringing out the best in people (ahem). That might be of interest to some of you.

There you go; you’re all caught up. You wouldn’t think that took an entire month, but somehow, it did. Must’ve been all the eating.


  1. Lisa

    You were missed but are forgiven cause you’re pretty. I completely relate to the laundry sitting there for weeks while adding on more obligations. My older son’s college is 4-6 hours away and they’re expecting really bad rain, so I HAD to amazon him some tea. Am debating pool floaties. I do wish he’d try new things and get out more but congrats to Chickadee on spreading her wings!

  2. karen

    All this continuing normalness is just a beautiful thing. Especially with the addition of the adorable coiffed puppies.

    As for this F-ing #notmypresident… just how many outrageous things are going to happen before someone with any balls and intelligence and .. you know.. give a F*ck for our country.. DOES something about it?? Please excuse the profanity. It just fits.

  3. PattiH

    Ten Years?!!! How did that happen? Good for you and I wish you many, many more happy years together. At least long enough to take a proper vacation. ;)

  4. that person

    Glad to hear from you again. Politics sucks.

    I love that you’re doing a play. Ever since your performance in the Vagina Monologues, I wondered why you didn’t do that more, you’re clearly talented. :) Go go actress Mir! :)

  5. Brenda

    That side by side of Duncan and Moe had me guffawing!

  6. Katherine

    My son’s school has the inner tube water polo as well. I thought he should go for it. He declined, but surprised me greatly by taking ballroom dance for his PE class ( and yes, it was his first choice class!).

    If Monkey really isn’t going to be driving when he’s off at Giant Nerd U, you might want to postpone the actual license. My insurance , at least, doesn’t charge while they have a permit, but does as soon as they have an actual license (even if they are away from home with no car, over 100 miles away. And boys are expensive to insure)

  7. Jeanie

    Good to hear from you, not that I’ve checked on you much. Only daily. Duncan looks adorable. Glad to hear Monkey’s driving, and I hope you and Otto get a vacation soon.

  8. Diane

    When I was in college, we had a sport called Broomball. Which was like hockey but with a broom and a kickball, but still on the ice. As also wearing sneakers, not skates. So–all that to say I’m not judging Chickie.
    As for the eating, as a friend of mine eloquently put it recently, “I’m eating my feelings. They taste like brownies.”

  9. Mary K. in Rockport

    I have not been so glued to all-day TV news watching since the Watergate Hearings in the early 1970’s. It is time consuming. I don’t want to watch, then I do.

  10. Mom24_4evermom

    10 years!! Congrats! On the other hand, it kind of seems like it’s been longer. :)

    Food. Food is good. ANY distraction is good.

    I’m trying to imagine a world wherein I will be allowed to look at my child’s SnapChat and Instagram. :) Actually, maybe. Maybe I don’t want to look. Hmm.

    I was just lecturing myself this morning that I need to stop dragging my heels (and letting J drag his) and make him drive already. Good times.

    Go you on the play! You will be awesome and that is VERY! EXCITING! and also, not political at all, so yay!!!

    I told my hubby yesterday that it’s so crazy. There was this thing that could happen, though you were pretty positive that it was so disastrous there was NO WAY it would actually happen. Then, when it did happen you were filled with despair but found comfort in the idea that it couldn’t actually be as bad as it seemed like it was going to be. Surely, it was all an over-reaction and that things would be, while not pleasant, essentially okay, and then the universe is working over-time to assure you EVERY. SINGLE. DAY. that nope, look at that, it really can be a daily affirmation of just how horrible you thought He, the regime, was going to be.

    Take care you. xx

  11. Jann

    Thanks for the link to your Alphamom post! I think it is wonderful for all ages. It appears I share a lot of your views, and I’ve been looking for some simple things to say to people who shock me with their opposite opinions. Some of your ideas have also helped me figure out how to “accept” these folks a little better, as well. I have forwarded this on to family members…not just kids!

  12. Meg

    Glad to read your words again. By the way, coed inner tube water polo was so much fun when I was in college back in the dark ages. Glad Chickadee is enjoying that (and pep band too). I am impressed you are willing to disrobe on stage.

  13. Karen

    You really caught my attention with the water polo part! That has become a huge (yuge??) part of our lives. The oldest granddaughter is in love with (real) water polo, and heads to California twice a year to participate on a more national level. Be glad Chickadee has the inner tube – this a rough sport! Katie plays school water polo as well as club, and is trying to make the National Team.

    I understand the election eating. I managed to lose 10 pounds, which has come back this past month. Wonder why???

  14. Ann Garniss

    I also got my loved one that I have chained to the stove a sous vide cooker. Steaks are phenomenal.

  15. Brigitte

    Ugh, the whole state of CT is way too close to all the prime nuclear targets, and hubby didn’t want to buy the PERFECT property I found in New Brunswick. At least your post has been a bright spot in my day; you even know how to say horrible things in a fun way!

  16. Rachael

    I have to ask, because I’m not up-to-date on all things cooking: How on earth does that sous vide thingy work?

    And as a mom with four IEP meetings to attend each February, I can’t imagine what that must be like attending the very last one. But I bet it’s all unicorn sprinkles or something like that.

    • Mir

      It’s an immersion heater/circulator. So it sucks the water into the unit, heats it, and circulates it back out. Mine is also bluetooth enabled so I can set and/or monitor it from my phone.

  17. Daisy

    Last IEP ever? Dance, baby, dance!!!

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