Baby Hands and Seeing Possibilities

I am not the sort of mother to ask other mothers if I can hold their babies. I do like babies and I think they are cute. I just don’t need to feel another tiny body in my arms, to hear that sweet snuffling sound they make in their sleep. I don’t need to smell the top of a baby’s head to be reminded that there is a heaven and it rests within each of us in the form of possibility.

I am not that sort of mother. At least not normally. Continue reading

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The Miracle of Babies

*Disclaimer:  Do not read this post if you are expecting a baby or are a new parent, grandparent, or are easily offended.  You have been warned.

There is a fascinating phenomenon about newborn babies and I’m not just talking about their ability to get poop all the way up to their hairline, five times in one day.  No, I’m talking about the way they can reduce intelligent people into blathering idiots.

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Babies are Grrrreat!

(I suppose a disclaimer is apropos in that I actually do like babies and think folks who want babies should get to have babies.  After all, babies are great.  But.  And, of course, the story is in the but.)

Back when I was a high school English teacher, I experienced many things in addition to a paycheck.  Of course there were the ubiquitous papers to grade and facial tissues to dole out during cold and flu season.  But I also got to distill some advice upon the hapless ears of my students.  Sometimes that advice focused on the dire effects of poor comma placement.  But sometimes it was along the lines of babies and reality.

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I Don’t Like Babies

As I was leaving the pediatrician’s office yesterday with my 6.5 year old daughter having a stomach issue, I watched a mom leave ahead of us.  She was carrying her baby in the ubiquitous baby car seat carrier that most of we moms have used – the kind that clips into a base in the car and has a handle so you can carry the dang thing around with you.  Don’t get me wrong, all three of my kids lived in their car seats as babies since for two of them, it was one of the only places they would sleep.  But I’ve come to hate those things.  With a passion.  Because there is no way to carry one without either putting your back out of joint, or delivering a series of bruises to your leg.  And that’s what this mom was doing:  carrying the car seat in her left hand, right hand raised as a kind of ballast, with a diaper bag the size of Tammy Faye Baker’s make-up case and trying to make it all cooperate so she could open the door.

Bump. Bump. Bump.  Every time that damn car seat wacked her the side of her leg, I thought one thing over and over:  I hate babies.  Which is probably a pretty strange thing to hear from someone who brought three of them into this world, but it is the truth never-the-less. Continue reading

Final Friday – All About Kissing

As a little something nutty to share with you all, I thought that I might share my latest reading experiences with my readers – but never fear, I’ll only do such a thing on the Final Friday of the month.  If not, all you would get to read about is what I’m reading!  (‘Cause it is my favorite thing to do in the world.  Well, besides eating chocolate and rub-downs by cabana-boys….)  So for our debut Final Friday – Lips Touch Three Times by Laini Taylor.

I came across this novel via a list of the top 10 young adult novels of 2009.  The list maker specifically noted the language of the novel and I would agree:  Laini Taylor is an evocative storyteller.

The novel is actually a collection of three short stories preceded by gorgeous artwork by Jim Di Bartolo – who happens to be married to Taylor.  The two projects marry well as the images create a perfect backdrop to Taylor’s imaginative stories of three young women and the power of a kiss.

I especially enjoyed the Author’s Note as I happen to love hearing about the writing process – what brings a tale to fruition.  Taylor describes herself as a magpie, scavenging “shiny things: fairy tales, dead languages, weird folk beliefs, fascinating religions, and more.” And that is precisely why Lips Touch Three Times works so well – Taylor has taken bits and pieces that are the familiar for the reader and turned them into something new and perhaps even more shiny.

Wow! Time has flown – they are now 6 & 3!

I couldn’t read this novel without pondering for moment our human need to kiss.  It is a rather strange thing, isn’t it?  There are folks out there who actually study the ins and outs (snicker) of why humans kiss – they are called philematologists and they are working diligently on humanity’s part to decipher this unusual peccadillo of ours.  Not all societies kiss, but for the 90% or so that do, kissing is quite a nice part of life, wouldn’t you agree?

Is it learned?  Is it instinctual?  Does it come from the ancient art of sniffing the most suitable mate?  I have no idea.  But I can tell you that there are times when I have had the overwhelming need to kiss another person.  Yes, there are “man-folk” on that list.  (George Clooney would surely be on my list if I were to ever say, have coffee, with the man, but that is a fantasy for another day.)   But, mostly my list has the 3 little people whom I would kill for – my children.

With each baby, as soon as their squirming self was placed in my arms, I kissed them.  This may not seem odd, but I am decidedly squeamish with all things “ookey” and a newborn baby is decidedly “ookey” – adorable because they are yours, but covered in goo.

And yet, my babies felt my arms cradle them, my lips kiss them, and my voice thank god for another miracle.

Do me a favor this weekend.  If there is someone in your life that you love, let them know it.

Have a great weekend and I’ll “see” you on Monday!

Ooh, Missive Boobs. I Gotta Get Me Some of Those!

Periodically folks like me find things that strike our funny bones.  Now I realize that my sense of humor lies somewhere between a 7th grade boy’s and someone slightly disturbed, but I try to not look at that as a major character flaw.  In fact, back when I has a high school English teacher, it added some necessary comedic relief.  Need a reference point to flesh that out?  How about, never say “tongue-in-cheek” in a room of 9th graders.  Or, when using a personal anecdote to illustrate a point, keep in mind that “thongs” mean something a wee bit different to today’s youth than back in the 70s.  Of course, I was always the one laughing the hardest over such conversational mishaps.  You would be amazed at my lack of decorum whenever somebody had the bean and cheese burrito for lunch.  (Why would school cafeterias do such a thing????)

So you can probably image how much mirth I find in typographical errors.  Specifically ones about missive boobs.  It is amazing how many folks hit this site by searching for “missive boobs” – which I’m thinking are supposed to be “massive boobs.”  You know, I’m not really sure I’m doing much for those lonely folks.

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Cinco De Mama-yo

So next Sunday will be my 9th Mother’s Day celebration.  Except Mother’s Day is really not much of a holiday in my book.  Like, didn’t people appreciate their mothers before Hallmark told them to?  And if you spend even 3 minutes, you can find out just what germinated the inkling that Mother’s Day was a good idea.  Of course, then came the onslaught beginning with Father’s Day and heading through every relationship a person can have.

It isn’t that I don’t appreciate the sentiment.  Because I do.  It’s just that for me, May 5th is just way more meaningful.  Because May 5, 2000 was the day I became a mom.

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