Am I Married to He Who Must Not Be Named?

Last weekend as I was focused on cleaning the garage, Husband shaved his facial hair.

Without warning.

The last time this happened was about ten years ago. Basically, Cody and Carter do not know of a time when he did not have facial hair.

Carter, nose in a book, did not seem to notice, but Cody did and immediately proclaimed that he looked like Lord Voldemort. He tried to say it in the nicest way possible, pointing out it was really just the eyes and chin. Husband was a good sport and even posed for a picture.

Oh, by the way, Husband is the one on the right, although I imagine the lack of a black robe gave it away.



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The 90’s had a Smell and I Found it in my Garage

Our garage. It is a turmoil of stuff – stuff we need, stuff we don’t need, stuff we don’t even know we have and don’t need (or do we?).? Plainly, just too much stuff if you ask me. If you ask Husband, however, you will get a different answer. So the garage has become our blind spot, or rather the elephant in the room wearing a festive party hat and sipping on pink lemonade in an effort to look pleasant and fit in. I don’t like the elephant.

My main task was twofold: reorganize our holiday/seasonal boxes and eliminate/combine boxes of like items to make more room.

I unearthed a box of antiques. The box had a big footprint and would make for some nice open space if only I could incorporate what was in that box into our lives.

An old box found at my parents house. Apparently it was in one of the barns on the property when they bought the house in 1967.

I put an old picture of my dad, a hawk feather, and a pair of his old work gloves in the box that so reminds me of my dad.

Undated Coke bottles, each from a different state.

The four larger bottles had printed on them a city and state. I put them up on our slightly crowded mantle.

I had to text my mom a picture of this to find out what it was.

The potato ricer fits right in with the old butter churns that sit on either side of our fireplace, churns my grandmother used to make butter on the farm. You never know when you’ll find yourself in a position where you suddenly need to rice a potato or churn some butter.

Heavy duty meat grinder – this sucker is heavy!

I thought the meat grinder would look nice clamped to the side of the mantle, but I fear the mantle would crumble under the grip of the clamp and weight of the grinder. Plus Husband worried that I might get all Carole Baskin on him the next time the topic of our garage came up. This gem is still in said garage.

Oh, how does one even go about writing a caption for this?

While navigating my way around and through boxes, I tripped and my foot came down on something plastic. There was a crunch and immediately the garage filled with the smell of the early 90’s. Not an antique nor a relic, but somehow this item deserved a mention in this commentary of mine.

The holiday/seasonal boxes have been tidied and there is a bit more wiggle room in our garage. The aroma of a bygone era still lingering in the air.

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Unexpected Moments in Teaching Remotely

Working from home as a third grade teacher

can lead to some unexpected moments.

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Baby Got B(ack)iscuits

Today my buttermilk was one day past the expiration date. So I did the only thing that seemed appropriate for such a situation. Husband stared on with a smirk on his face, an expression of amusement mixed with a healthy dash of alarm as I danced, twirling my “baby got back” around. They are in the oven now, the aroma slowly wafting through the house, the music still jumping around in my head.

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Simple Sunday – Our Gargoyle of the Paper Products

How do you keep your’s safe?

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An Owls’ Outing

When the boys were younger, we found magic everywhere and in everything we did. We danced with our own shadows while waiting at the bus stop, we named the bushes and hills that comprised our small patch of woods on our property. We saw giraffe and zebras shopping the aisles at our local Home Depot. It was more lovely than I can explain.

I think it helped that I was always with them on our outings, our adventures, simply because they were little. I enjoy the playfulness that erupts from the seemingly ordinary life moments. I have noticed that I see less magic. I have ponder this greatly knowing that, of course, these things change as children grow older, but I also wonder if I have stopped looking for or creating the shimmer and glimmer, that I don’t smudge the edges of our experiences to make them feel more dreamy or warmer then they may be to the average outsider looking in. Have I lost the magic?

A couple months ago while tucking Carter in for the night, I playfully chucked stuffed owl after stuffed owl upon his bed (he has an extensive collection). I observed that he no longer slept with his gaggle of night loving fowl. He told me that they were not the same, that he did not believe the same things about them that he used to. “They do not, any more, fly out the window on adventures while I am sleeping,” he told me. I stood there, my throat tight and dry in the way that it does when emotion threatens to overcome you. He continued to tell me that he missed being young and believing in his stuffed animals. I nodded, not trusting that my voice could crawl through my constricted throat to answer him.

I picked up Hool, his much loved and now rather scruffy, pale green owl. His brown plastic eyes scratched and dented from multiple crash landings, injuries incurred before he had mastered the art of flying, or rather, landing. Hool had been one of his favorites. While I looked into Hool’s eyes, Carter began to organize his owls, neatly lining them up in an order that made perfect sense to him.

Looking more at Hool than Carter I spoke of this shift in magic and belief. Imagination is always with you and with that imagination you can create whole worlds and characters within those worlds. They may not be real, but you can love them so much that they almost feel real. It will not be the same, you are right, but you can still wonder and imagine. You can still create.

Five years ago…

Before I left him, I cracked his bedroom window open a bit, suggesting that it would make it easier for Hool and his friends to venture out into the evening if they so wished. Carter, eyes narrowed, asked me if I believed they would; the word “believed” was drawn out and accusational.? I responded that I most certainly could imagine them doing so. With a glint in my eye, I began to unravel a story of Hool, the mischief maker, knocking loose the screen and motioning with his wing to his friends – come join me! Carter smiled and picked up the storyline.

And together we imagined an owls’ outing.

Hool, up to no good.

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Simple Sunday – Easter bouquet (with microscope)

The rounded purple flower was cut from our vegetable garden from our onion chive plant. I’m not sure what type of bush the other purple flowers hail from, but I rather like them.

The old microscope we found in Husband’s dad’s house as we were cleaning it out after his death. The pennies are Carter’s addition. Together, it works.

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When James Exercises

The other day I caught our orange cat, James, hanging on Husband’s robe. At the time of the robe hanging, the robe was itself hanging on the back of our bedroom door and, thankfully, not hanging on Husband.

I happened to mention James’ latest naughty behavior to Cody, who is a week shy of his fourteenth birthday. Cody responded in a way that made my heart swell with pride.

“So you are telling me that James was doing aerobic exercise?”

He didn’t even laugh at his own joke. Total deadpan.

Yup, he is going to do just fine.

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What is a Floor Towel, you ask?

Yesterday was my birthday. It was also Tuesday and so one with any sense would immediately join the two thoughts and put together a birthday Taco Tuesday. Which, of course, we did.

Before I get into the Taco Tuesday-ness of my birthday, I need to share with you the four items Husband surprised me with on my special day.

  1. Two embroidered floor towels. As you can see, we have hardwood floors. Apparently hardwood? floors and water don’t mix. In an effort to be a responsible hardwood floor owner, I have had a boring hand towel on the floor of my kitchen in between the sink and the refrigerator for years. This towel confuses guests who, in an effort to be helpful, pick it up and put it on the counter.? This is gross and so was born my brainchild? –? ?the? floor? towel.? Now no one will confuse it for a regular towel that has simply lost its way.? I am baffled that my floor towel idea has not taken off.
  2. A box of Fairytale Brownies.? Not only are these quite possibly the best brownies I have tasted, but the co-owners of this small business were kindergarten friends who loved brownies. What’s not to love?
  3. A third wooden-framed, small, round, mirror from Pier 1. I bought two of these cute mirrors from a Pier 1 store on a serious going out of business sale months ago, but bemoaned the fact that they did not have a third. Apparently I moaned about this long enough and loud enough for Husband to take note and track down a third.
  4. Last, but not least, a CD of a band from the 80’s that was never popular but whose music keeps popping into my head. Husband bought the CD, copied it to our Sonos library, and then randomly started playing it. It stopped me in my tracks. “Who in the world is playing Darling Cruel?” I exclaimed. If you have ever had the propensity towards 80’s hairbands and promise not to judge me, give it a go. If not, skip it.

Now, back to the Taco Tuesday part of my birthday…

We live in a cul-de-sac with possibly the best and coolest people you could ever hope to call your neighbors. We have deemed this time to be one of a Cul-De-Sac Quarantine. We are all like minded in regards to social distancing, only leaving the cul-de-sac for essentials, and borderline obsessive hand washing. We are a total of four houses, eleven people, including our family of four. We have decided to social distance together in our cul-de-sac, gathering outside to chat or sit around our fire pot. It helps with my sanity.

Yesterday we had a festive Taco Tuesday in honor of my birthday.

Carter playing cards with one of the two neighbor girls.

After the tacos were eaten, Husband got a fire going in our fire pot. Fireside reading, chatting, and Margarita-ing ensued.

The boys reading by the fire.

We watched as the International Space Station zipped by overhead and I tried but failed to capture the brilliance of the full moon.

I did not get to go out for a birthday dinner but I have to say that I think I rather enjoyed staying close and keeping it simple.

That being said, I can’t wait until the time when we can have company over so I can show off my elegant and sensical floor towels while subjecting them to Darling Cruel.

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