For Rebecca's Happiness, Or, Tongue in Cheek

What we ate for breakfast (+ sausage!, which, unfortunately, was inside our bellies by the time I thought to take a picture):

The current view outside the window this morning (which, - the junk car, is probably remarkably similar to the view outside your window):

Instagrammer, first class, that's me.
I live to serve.


Real Time Mystery

An unnamed girl just stormed into the room and burst out, "I'm NEVER going to live in Ohio, even if my true love lives there. I'll MAKE him move here (unless-he-lives-in-Florida-and-is-a-Wallenda...then-I'll-move-there). Do you know why?!!?!?!?!!!"

That's nearly an exact quote.

When I looked up quizzically, she continued, "Because you can't SMILE on your driver's license! Isn't that CRAZY?! Why won't they let you smile?!!!?!!"

Now guess the girl.


Local Folks

This train table is up for grabs until our next drop-off trip to Salvation Army. The painted panels are still nice, but the drawers are just hanging in there, all duct-taped and wood-glued, so it's not great for toy storage.

Email me if you want it, otherwise-- poof.

Real Time to Remember (with a nod to steaming caffeine)

It's been a long time since we owned a microwave-- long enough that the child who is currently washing dishes was flummoxed by a mug's inscription that it was dishwasher and microwave safe and mused, "Why would anyone want to put a CUP in the MICROWAVE?!"

Why, indeed.

That's pretty much the only thing I miss about a microwave-- the easy reheating of tea and coffee. And now I'm off for my second cup...


Real Time Phony Phone

"Mama, this would make the perkeck [sic] picture for your blog."

If you say so, bud...
At least it features a bathrobe.


Torture Chamber

...but it was worth it to give something to the grandmas.

Merry ninth day of Christmas!

And a happy New Year!


Johnson Children, Gather Round

Here's the truth.

I currently have an ermine in my basement freezer because it just seemed like the right thing to do.
I guess genetic heritage is hard to overcome.

In a stroke of good fortune, my father-in-law left the perfect storage box for it.

(And I'm pretty sure Dad would approve...)



In honor of the third day since November ninth that bare ground has appeared (following on the heels of yesterday, day the second), I took Skylark outside this morning to document her birthday dress.

I bought (yes, bought) her this four dollar frock because I could not resist it (okay, "resist" is probably not the right word, as I jubilantly bought it after actively searching for just such a dress). It stands in lieu of the birthday gift I never made her but that still revolves inside my head in all its untainted perfection. Most of the time, things look better in my head, anyway.

I'm mourning that, after a year of dandelion poof, her hair is starting to settle down, even though some residual poof remains. Darn gravity. 

You had a good run, though, little one. Here's to long and luscious locks in 2019!
Oh, how we love you.


Real Time

Due to having little sleep, heaps of candy, and coffee (which I generally avoid due to my fickle ticker), and to offset the despondency that tends to pool on gray days, I decided to go slogging for the first time in over a month.

While puffing down our road, I was plenty warm, but coming back inside our heated house, I was freezing, so I dressed as I always do....for the arctic.

We were given a coat on Sunday that is lightweight, comfortable, and toasty warm.* Its only downside is that it may look like a garbage bag. I don't like it off me, but when I put it on, as I just voiced aloud to Mildred, "I feel strangely fashionable."

"Oh, boy, Mama," she replied without hesitation and without glancing up from her mathematics book, "You're so fashionable, I can barely stand it."

Middle-aged mothers.
What is this world coming to?

See?  Strangely fashionable.

*With thanks to Mitzi, our long-time benefactor, who has made me classy indoors again. Bathrobes no more! Puffy jackets all the way.



Departing blackbirds thought our home was rest this year,
Settling in great swarms to blanket backyard trees
And giving further burden to the heavy heads of sunflowers,
Which were, at last, too bent to face the sun,
And which the many birds stripped bare,
A pointillism brought to life by need.

Last week the stars shone hard and bright,
With force that only winter air allows.
Orion lay propped on his elbows, the Dog curled near,
And I stood below, a single spot of ink among the multitude.

This morning I walked toward dawn
And did not see it for what it was,
Thinking in error that the shaft of white was a neighbor
Out for who-knows-what at five o'clock.

Today, like a flock of birds, my sister's husband and his kin
Will swoop upon a yellow house, and their weight will ease a burden.
The air will smell of diesel fuel, the fallen leaves, and new snow,
A potent mix to make one crave cold water and saltines,
A rising incense in mid-November to resurrect my father.


November doesn't know what to do with itself. In the space between all the endings and all the beginnings, I, too, find myself turning in blank circles. In my calendar today, November 10th-- "Dad."

Everyone's right. Grief changes, and we change with it, but it doesn't end. It's not something to cross off a list and leave behind. I guess, instead, it's something that forces clumsy poetry first thing in the morning.



Yes, I know the following posts are the blog equivalent of beating a dead horse. Humor me or skip them altogether, but in case you haven't noticed, I have a thing for costumes, and after spending too much energy on a thing, it somehow feels right to beat it further before leaving it utterly behind,
until next year, when the circus begins all over again. 

Regular posts about something other than costumes (thank goodness!) will return when they return.
Flesh and blood life continues to crowd out its electronic counterpart for now, as it should.
Until then, it's OZozOz until everyone swears off the Emerald City for life.