Elijah at work?

His caption for this:

I found myself torn between two Nietzsche quotes to accompany this. I have decided to include both.

“We should consider every day lost on which we have not danced at least once”

“And those who were seen dancing were thought to be insane by those who could not hear the music”


1) The internet’s confusion over the fact that all of my sons insist on borrowing my apron and wearing it while bare chested is already well documented.  Your conclusion that my apron often smells like man pits is well founded.

2) I actually shrieked when I saw the part with the knives and he’s going to get an earful when he gets home from work.



I took apart the dresser to start refinishing it shortly after this photo was taken, so you will be spared from further photos like this.

Another poor attempt at a picture of the antique hair pin that Steve gave me for my birthday.

Date afternoon.  We had to make a longish trip to pick up some home improvement supplies and decided to make an afternoon of it.  Iain offered to tile the backsplash in the downstairs bath, but we needed all of the special grout, thin set, sealer, etc. for my fancy cement tiles.  Also, paint for the girls’ room!

I tend to get kind of crazy with paint selection.  There are so many options and I’m terribly picky about these things.  I have a new system now and I feel kind of like a dirty, rotten, cheat, but it’s worked really well for me!  I use the Farrow & Ball color cards and pick from them and then have it matched in a cheaper paint.  They have a comparatively small selection of colors, but they are exactly the sort of colors that I gravitate towards.  Picking from only a small, carefully curated selection saves me a lot of time, energy, and let’s face it, spiraling.

I offered Seraphina the same pallet and she chose Middleton Pink for the walls.  Together we decided on Dimity for the trim.  For the dresser I got Magnolia Home Chalk Paint in Ella Rose.  It’s going to be a very, very, very pink room!

Afterwards we went to a restaurant that we like in the area.  I convinced them to let us take dessert and drinks outside, despite the fact that it was around thirty-five degrees. (side note: immunocopromised me is still not going maskless in public places, sigh)

I really only have one full on picture of Steve from today. He kind of looks like Bernie Sanders at the Inauguration, sans mittens, because after 25 years I still haven’t converted him to knitwear. I don’t believe he was quite as charmed by the novelty of my idea as I was.

My main motivation for this visit was the roasted fig crustless cheese cake that I believed them to be serving, but alas!  It was only a special and we missed it.  So, ice cream in the cold it was!  I quite enjoyed myself, but I’m still sad about missing the cheese cake.  It’s hard to be sad about a gluten free brownie topped with ice cream, fudge, and peanut butter cups, but I managed it.

I also had a sugar and spice Manhattan. For most of my adult life I didn’t drink at all and now I only drink every once in a while.  I probably won’t have had it if it weren’t for the disappointment of the cheese cake.  I don’t even like the way that being intoxicated makes me feel.  It’s too reminiscent of when I have a flare up and my muscle control starts to go and I have trouble thinking clearly and start to feel out of control.  What I *do* like, very much is fancy drinks in fancy glasses.  I just feel like it elevates an outing into something special.  What I would really like is if more places offered fancy mocktails.  Or like a kombucha bar…  That I could get on board with.

Galen started his cake tonight.  He wants to make this fancy ice cream cake for his birthday, but it will take several days of work, one layer at a time.


2/17/2023 continued

Meal plan for the week:

* Zucchini spaghetti and meatballs with pesto cream tomato sauce

* Slow Cooker Maple Smoked Brisket with creamy whipped parsnips

* Spatchcocked chicken with herbs and lemon over roasted veggies

* Galen’s birthday: pizza, ice cream cake

* Roasted Beet Salad with chevre green goddess dressing

* Caprese Chicken Sheet pan

* Nicoise Salad



A few years ago Iain built a set of shelves for me in the living room.  One part can be viewed from all over the room and that is where I keep my very special books; the old, hardbound copies and collectors editions that set my heart fluttering.  I planned it this way because I knew that getting to see those books every day would bring me joy.  This morning I immediately spotted a missing book and knew that Elijah must have taken it to work.  I’m not sure how long Steve had to witness me staring wide eyed and sputtering.  “But, but, but…these are *special*, handle very carefully books, not throw in a bag and bop around town with them books.”  Really, I can’t even begin to tell you how long it took me to move on from the somewhat horrified, “But, but, but…” in my head.  I don’t think I heard a word that anyone said all morning.

Later in the day that boy of mine posted a little video saying something along the lines of, “Sure I hate my job, but at least on my lunch break I can kick back with some Brontë and a spot of tea.”  And there he was, in his auto body parts uniform with a travel mug and my book.  And here was I, smitten and amused, because he is *so* my child.  He even insists on using the cursive font, just like I do, even though he must realize that most of his contemporaries probably can’t even read it.  When he got home I didn’t say anything about the book, I just kissed the top of his head.

Sera had a major disappointment this morning and refused to be consoled.  We finally ended up watching the first part of Anne of Green Gables; the 1985 one with Megan Follows.  Mairi baked lemon bars.  Even with such a pleasant diversion I had to work really hard at not feeling anxious about my day being turned on it’s head.



~Nest found by Seraphina after a recent wind storm~

If you are someone who can walk into a messy room and just start picking up random items and putting them away like some kind of freaking wizard, I am truly happy for you.  I am not like that.  I will wander around feeling overwhelmed for twenty minutes and then give up.  Or I’ll start picking up random items only to hold them and set them somewhere else they don’t go before getting sucked into some tiny project that doesn’t matter like organizing my yarn collection.

~Read this morning in bed from the book How to Keep House While Drowning~

This is me exactly.  Except I reject the premise that organizing my yarn collection is unimportant.  I also once saw a friend describe her ADHD way of cleaning as taking all 3000 items in a room, heaping them in the center of the floor, followed by totally panicking and trying to avoid it for several weeks.  Oh, the number of times I’ve lived that one too.



Seraphina and I finished reading Anne of Green Gables, all except for “A Good imagination Gone Wrong”, because she’s a sensitive little soul, as I have always been, and I remember the descriptions of the ghosts they imagined being too much for me as a child.  We’ve started in on The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe.  Already she is asking for Turkish Delight for her birthday.

Those moments at night, with just the two of us, cuddled up under her pink canopy, lit by the stars lights that I wove through her headboard are often my favorite part of the day.

**I made the star frames for Seraphine.  She likes them.**



Rose covered dresses for all!  Apparently, the new dresser is just a giant photo prop.  Even though they are merely grocery store flowers, my Valentine’s bouquet this year looks quite regal.  Winter rose season (the time from my birthday until the Valentine’s flowers fade) is almost over.  I won’t take hundreds of photos of roses again until they are blooming in my garden, somewhere toward the end of June/beginning of July.  I need the reprieve at this time of year.  To be surrounded by flowers, at least on a small scale, helps me to make it through to the end of winter.



Sleepy this morning.  I was up most of the night, talking to the kids.  This happens.  It’s something that I’ve found with mothering teens and young adults.  Sometimes those quiet hours, when no one else is around is the only time to truly talk and be heard, so I always try to make the time for it.  Even though I know that it will take me a while to recover from the sleepless night.  It always seems worth the exchange to have that time alone with them.

Last night we were not alone.  It was all four of my older children, plus a few friends.  I think it must be hard for new people to come into our house.  There is this scene in the National Geographic show Genius, in the first season which was about Einstein and was excellent, where Einstein goes to stay with a family in Switzerland while he attends school.  The family is like nothing he’s ever come across.  Everyone is debating philosophy.  Everyone is outspoken.  We are like that.  Philosophy, politics, everything under the sun really.  Sometimes multiple debates and conversations going on at once.

Like this:

Then when I think that others are getting overwhelmed, I tell everyone to shush and stop and at least two of them go pick up instruments and everyone starts harmonizing on songs that no one else has ever heard of.  I think it must be rather over-whelming for outsiders.