i'll hurry on my own schedule, thanks

If I have borrowed something from you, I promise I will return it this year.*
If that doesn't seem expeditious, you underestimate my book collection. Or maybe you don't, but you underestimate my internal mayhem.

In any case, most of the stuff I've got that belongs to someone else is books. And some movies. And I'm going to read them and watch them all back to back.

This doesn't mean I'm going to prioritize them, necessarily, or even probably, since I'll be concurrently reading other things that are arguably more important than your books. Things that might further (or start, to be honest) my career.

Stuff I'm supposed to read, as opposed to stuff of yours, which I borrowed as leisure reading (and watching) which has now become a chore, since I've had it for so long I now urgently owe it back.

But it means that when I finish one thing that isn't mine (not counting library books, which obviously have to be read first, since they'll actually cost me money if I keep them too long) I'll start another.

In due time.

*This doesn't include the hippo mug, which it's just my turn to have for awhile. (Sorry, Ms. Boynton. As it turns out, it wasn't you who put all those hippos in compromising positions.)

It also doesn't include Mom's copy of Fabulous Nobodies, which is actually Aaron's copy, although I still had my copy it turns out, so I didn't need to take it in the first place, and on top of that I've found another copy, so Mom, if you really want it, I could give you back that copy and give Aaron my first copy, which I'm pretty sure was his first copy in the first place, which would make your copy actually his second copy, and then I could keep the copy I just bought, and send you mine (his) and him his (yours) instead of keeping all three copies, where they are, here.

It also doesn't include things that I have an especial fondness for that no one else cares about, and which I probably never said I'd give back anyway, like the puffy green jacket that leaks feathers or the blue and red vinyl carry-on suitcase that hardly fits anything and falls off your shoulder all the time.

It also doesn't include André's piano, which I can't obviously just stick in a padded envelope and throw eastward, for christsakes. Or expendables (pens, for example; dollar bills, in whatever quantity).

Or pots and pans. (I burn them all, forgetting about beans.)

This also doesn't include Rasputin or Phoenix. I've decided to keep them (in a suitcase).

There is also no need to worry. Because sometimes really desperate people give everything away before they dive off the Golden Gate Bridge. I'm not giving everything away; just your stuff. Back.


snow day

Here I am finishing up page 4,100 of Harry Potter is Conjured Into Existence on Bits of Cafe Napkin by an Indefatigable Single Mother and Within a Decade Reaps Riches Heretofore Unprecedented by: a Female Author; any Previous Perveyor of Children's Literature; an Unkempt Skinny Boy With Glasses Who Resides in a Crawl Space Beneath a Musty Stairwell Alongside Oxidizing Paint Trays; or For That Matter, The Queen. As you can see, I have been sitting in this spot so long my cat has mistaken me for a new bit of grafting on the furniture.

I might very well have returned to New England and weathered the storm my mother has (below) documented very nicely when she should have been clearing her car of windshield debris, I have seen so little daylight lately.

I did manage to get out of the house .. um .. for a minute on Sunday? maybe? and then again yesterday, noticing both times (incase you don't catch the pedestrians below the tree wearing shorts which this next photo clearly intimates) that it was so warm out, I must seriously be a nutjob for sitting at home the past few weeks in legwarmers, reading books.

I think what I mean is: it's time to go to the beach, call everyone I know who lives somewhere snowy, and gloat.

I could bring my laptop, if I'm determined to ignore the weather.



Happy new month and especially new year.

I spent Christmas in Ohio where there was - !? - no snow.

It was plenty ominous, overcast, and dreary .. so I got a dose of seasonal affective disorder, just no snowmen or snowball fights ... and, ok, or scraping ice off my brother's windshield, and I can't exactly say I was dismayed to return home to sunny skies and t-shirt weather. But what's the point of going somewhere cold for Christmas if you don't get quaint puffy snow outside the window when you're opening presents?  (If you're stuck somewhere arctic, I'm really sorry for ruining your day here, but just try to imagine palm trees strung with lights and maybe you'll see what I mean) 

(if your imagination fails you, there is always the internet)

I had intended to make a gingerbread house, but was daunted by an amazing array of them at the Cleveland Botanical Garden (where you can also, and we did, traipse amongst butterflies and birds). Here are a few of my favorites.

after that I wasn't so inclined .. can't really top those.

So instead of the gingerbread house, I helped make cookies.

This is what happens when a 4 year old and an 8 year old decorate cookies:

This is what happens when you let a 4 year old borrow your camera:

This is what happens when you let an 8 year old borrow your camera:

This is what happens when you ask the 8 year old to take pictures of his 4 year old sister:

Even so, no one got a stocking full of coal.
Maybe next year.