Archive for March, 2010

Coming up for air.

Ah, Spring Break.  I love me some Spring Break. 

I love sunshine and warm weather and birds singing in the trees.  I love not having to keep school uniforms washed and in fact letting the laundry go just a little bit.  I love that there is no homework.  I love that Lent is almost over and I’ll be able to each chocolate at will again. 

What I do not love is massive sinus infections that restrict your ability to breathe and cause your teeth to ache. 

I have taxed my body mightily these past few days, taking every over-the-counter medication I could think of to ease my symptoms.  And washing them down with caffeinated beverages to try and keep awake in the process, since practically everything makes me sleepy.  But there is only so much that plan can do for you, and my body responded with an increased heart rate and achy kidneys.  In the end I felt so bad I just gave up and went to the doctor.  Her verdict?  A “doozy” of a sinus infection, here’s a Z-pack and a steroid shot. 

Last night I went to bed early just because I could. 

Nine hours of sleep is a beautiful thing. 

I think I may be on the mend (finally) but it’s still early in the day. 

— Mox

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It’s rained pretty much all day today, one of those sloppy, sloggy, chilly early spring rains that make you want to sack out on the couch with a bag of chips all day.  Or maybe a pan of warm brownies.  If, you know, you hadn’t given up chocolate for Lent. 


I have had occasion to be at Lowe’s several times this week, always in search of something very necessary and always needing to get in and get out in short order.  Right outside the entrance there have been hanging baskets of pansies, and boy, do I want to buy pansies.  I haven’t had time to get back to the garden section and take a look at the spring flowers, but when I do finally get the chance I am going to buy pansies. 

My first memory of pansies is walking through my grandmother’s yard with her, in search of tiny little pansies that we called Mickey Mouses.  I don’t know where that name came from, whether it was me or my grandmother who came up with it, but most people know them as violas or Johnny-jump-ups.  Apparently she’d had some planted in a pot or flowerbed and true to their nature they reseeded and “jumped up” just about everywhere in her yard.  They remain my very favorite of the pansy group. 

One of the things I like most about Spring is the flowers.  Bursts of color large and small, often in unexpected places, a welcome jolt from the blahs and doldrums of a too-long winter.  Tulips, jonquils, pansies… all of these don’t need a whole lot of warmth to bring forth. 

The rain and my schedule have conspired to keep me from making any solid plans to plant flowers, but the next opportunity I get, I’ll be back at Lowe’s, buying pansies. 

see? happy!

– Mox

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For better or worse, I’m going to do it. 

I’m starting my own business.

I have filled the past month of my time with helping my best friend clean out and organize her overburdened house, and I’ve enjoyed it.  There is something about sorting and organizing that feels like working a giant jigsaw puzzle to me, complete with the satisfying “snap” of pieces locking together. 

Many people have suggested to me that I do this sort of thing for money.  And so, very quietly, I have developed a website, printed off some business cards, and begun a soft roll-out of my services. 

At this point I’m just looking for side work, to see how the market will bear out.  No sense jumping into the pool if the pool is shallow, right?  That’s how necks get broken. 

The reasons for doing this right now are pretty varied.  Mainly I need to make some money.  I also need to make this money for the foreseeable future.  So there are two reasons right there, and damn good ones if you ask me.  Immediately below those reasons is the fact that I want to be available to do things for Spawn and Spawn’s school, which really sort of precludes me working a 40-hour workweek.  Following that is the reason that I’m just really burned out in the advertising field, having been in it for over 20 years now.  I need to get away from it. 

When I turned 40, I started reading lots of different articles and books that basically said your 40’s are when you stop giving a shit what other people think.  My 41st year passed, and now my 42nd is about halfway done, and I’m only just now starting to feel that boldness. I feel a little calmer and a little wiser.  Oh, I’m scared as hell to start this venture, don’t get me wrong.  But I also realize that if I don’t do it there will always be that part of my brain that will regret at least trying. 

I don’t know how any of this will turn out but at least I’m making an effort. 

— Mox

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Glory be and hallelujah, spring arrived over the weekend. 

With it, of course, arrived a cold front that brought rain and squeezed my head like a vise grip.  Just about the only thing I don’t love about spring is the assault it makes on my sinuses.  Couple that with the remnants of my husband’s cold that he so generously shared with me, and I may have a sinus infection in the making.  What fun. 

It literally rained all day yesterday.  The ground, suitably thawed and already saturated, has become an unwrung sponge.  Which, along with the warmer temperatures, means that the ants are marching on, hurrah, hurrah.  Did you know that ants like toothpaste?  Come see Spawn’s bathroom, with its’ leavings of toothpaste and the happy conga line of ants going to and fro from the sink.  I cannot find a point of entry for the little devils. 

The Asian lady beetles have all awakened from their slumber within the crevasses of my windows, so I have them trooping about everywhere, too.  It’s too bad there are no natural predators within the four walls of my house — even the cats have learned that the ladybugs taste bad. 

Perhaps the best part so far has been the happy twittering that greets me every morning when I go out to get the paper.  Yes, the birds have returned and are making the most of time by singing and flitting about, searching for this year’s mate. 

I do believe this is the best I’ve felt, mentally, in about six months. 

— Mox

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Is good for the soul.

I haven’t said much about it here, publicly, but for the past seven months I have been preparing to join the Catholic Church.  I’ve written a few posts but haven’t published them because they felt too personal.  My husband and my mother are also on this journey.  It’s been interesting.  This has been a long road and a complicated story, but suffice it to say that I feel a genuine comfort in the Catholic faith that I did not feel in the church I was raised in. 

We are approaching Holy Week and as such the reception into the church, and there is one tiny little thing that we must do beforehand. 


When Spawn did First Confession last year, the kid was nervous.  What sins an eight-year-old has to confess, I don’t know.  Can’t be too many, and can’t be too bad.  I pish-toshed about it, to myself, and after First Communion I didn’t think any further about it. 

But now.  Now the shoe is on the other foot, now isn’t it? 

To call what I am feeling “nervous” isn’t really accurate.  I’m not nervous.  I’m… concerned.  Concerned that I won’t have anything to confess. 

I’m trying not to get all hung up on the mechanics of the thing, though having a script would be helpful.  What I know of confession wouldn’t fit on the head of a pin.  I am not by habit a guilty person.  I don’t feel the need to unburden myself too often.  Things that a cradle Catholic would confess to, I’m all, pfft

So I am in the unusual and unfamiliar position of looking for something to confess. 

I mean, I don’t currently have something that is eating away at me.  Recent history isn’t bringing anything up that I haven’t already worked through and made peace with.  How far back do I need to reach?  Because I can think of several things in my 42 years that I’m not particularly proud of, but in the spirit of “it is what it is” I don’t see the sense in digging up bones. 

Being raised Protestant has not prepared me for this. 

I’ve got a week to come up with something.  Maybe I need to confess that I can’t think of anything to confess. 

— Mox

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I refuse to be sick.

About three weeks ago, Spawn came home complaining of a sore throat.  I made the kid gargle salt water before bed, the mothers’ cure for the ages, and that seemed to do the trick. 

Trouble is, the kid shared the sore throat with my husband and me. 

My husband was the first to go down for the count, as he usually is.  I had him gargle the salt water, too, though he didn’t do as thorough of a job as I would have liked, and that, coupled with his propensity to overwork, led to a full-out sick.  I knew he was sick when he laid in his recliner all day on a Saturday.  And on the following Sunday. 

I managed to avoid the yuck for over a week, but my husband, in his refusal to do anything about his own illness, brought it into the bedroom with him.  And coughed all over me.  All night long.  For several nights in a row. 

So guess what. 

I have had a sore throat now for the past four days, despite gargling with salt water, and my ears feel full and scratchy inside.  While my sinuses are remarkably clear, it seems that there is a frog that’s taken up residence in my larynx.  All because one man kept insisting he was “fine.” 

I do not have time for this nonsense. 

— Mox

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Bumpy re-entry.

Dear Powers That Be:  I would like my hour back now.  Thank you. 

I don’t know who decided that moving our clocks up an hour in the late winter/early spring was a good idea, but I am here to tell you:  not a good idea.  I don’t mind getting up early, not at all, but what I do mind is doing it in the dark, as opposed to the dim light that we were getting used to seeing at six in the morning.  I simply function better when the sun gets up before I do. 

I also am not fond of gaining that hour back in the fall. 

I just wish whoever decides these things would leave well enough alone. 

— Mox

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