Monday, August 24, 2009

Blind Spot

"Do you know why I do that, Momma?" Every half-year or so we notice a small underwear tower in the far corner of Janie's room.

I arch my brows, "Why?"

Her mop of curls tilted to the left, she blinks, "It's because," eyebrows now arched like mine, "the dirty clothes basket, is sort of in my blind spot."

"Oooh." Darn blind spot. Mine too.

We reassemble her underwear tower in the basket.

"Follow me, Jane."

I'm half down the hallway when I hear, "I'll follow you wherever you go." She's almost on tip-toe, "Like wherever you step, I'll step," she says. She mimes it.

With that, all my steps seem to magnetize. This child, building underwear towers and walking on tip-toe, strides and steps in the quiet hole of my blind spot.

And so, we pull out our markers. Write it on your gates, Moses said. Toes pressing into garden dirt, we lean to the back fence and scrawl out a verse we know. And then another. Maybe another tomorrow, making a few footprints we can see.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Girls' Date

"Momma!" I turn to see Janie stopped at a rack of rather "dainty" women's underwear. "These are NOT modest," she says.

"I know. Can you believe that?!"

Next, she is captivated by a bright white mannequin noting and then poking her holey tights. "Momma, are these dead people?" She steps just beyond my peripheral and gasps, "Oh my word!" Why, that one has shorts as small as underwear.

And can you believe it's a normal sort of trendy store that I'd hardly think twice about if I'd gone shopping alone?

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Day Four

"GLORY to GOD. GLOOOORRRY to GOD. GLORY to GOD in the HIGHEST!" It's a shouting match in the sun-room. The piano thunders with small fists pounding out fits of enthusiasm. Jack's voice echos a half-second behind Jane's, and Lulu is screaming. Day four of Daddy's backpacking trip and the glory's getting quite stout around here. As it erupts down the hall and across my bed covers, I sigh. Morning light pools on the floor. It's one of those moments where staring far off into space never felt so good.

Barbarian husband is off fighting the whiles of mountain trails, rugged peaks, hiking on past the pit-bottom of exhaustion. Surviving on the land (and dehydrated food), a communion of man-ness happens. It's the antithesis of our safe life. The antidote. How is it that danger nourishes the heart of a man? And glory the heart of a child. Who knew I would tend such rare commodities .

Monday, August 17, 2009

Got Your Back

It was a scritchy-scratchy, thistle of a morning.

"Momma, you just said that you don't like Daddy's sense of humor." Her eyebrows are arched. I can hear it without even turning around. "Is that really what you want to say." The frame freezes. I see a smile tease at the corner of Daddy's mouth. "How would you like it if someone said that to you?"

I sigh.

The apology was spectacular. Daddy said he thought we'd entered a parallel universe. Don't ya wish you could grab on to that apology so fast every time!?

Thursday, August 13, 2009


It's the suds I see as I pass our bathroom. Mustache-man looks up. "One more," he swishes and spits a glug of bubbles into the sink.

"Honey, are you washing your mouth out with soap?"

Nod. He's already sucking in another swig from a red cereal bowl. It's the frog one with big buggy eyes. He swishes another shot and vaguely aims at the sink. Spit.

"Is that because I said being naughty makes your heart dirty?"

He grabs a rumpled hand towel, grins. "Now my clean."

After scrubbing all the marker off his hands, greathearted one tries to make his heart clean.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

A Gift

The hospitality of a hundred years ago. My friend, Mel, brought me flowers. Sidled into an old milk bottle, they set me and the half-tidied house at ease. Anyone else have friends that can't help but add value to every room they enter?