Friday, July 27, 2007


I know it's absurd. Honestly, I do. But ever since I finished the final installment of Harry Potter last night at the exhausting hour of 1:30, I've suffered from the deepest melancholy. Funny how a book can so pull me into it's world, so utterly blot out what goes on outside. And today of all days, I needed the escape.

The Jeep's window, which refused to work yesterday led to a discovery of a fuel line leak. Over $500 to fix that sucker. And then the call from "The Prick" at my old insurance company, from when I worked at The Really Big Company. It seems there's a state law that The Banker and I had never heard of that specifies that since The Banker's birthday was before mine and since he was employed at the time of Becca's birth, state law demanded that his insurance company provide primary coverage for Peanut and mine secondary. WTF?

Since my coverage was better than The Banker's, we'd opted to cover Becca under my insurance. When we decided I'd remain at home, we switched Becca and myself to The Banker's coverage. But now my old insurance company is trying to duck out of paying Becca's bills, due to this unheard of "state law." Essentially, the old insurance company is going to haggle with The Banker's insurance company over every cent it paid out since Becca's birth. But Becca wasn't covered under his insurance! And who do you think will be responsible for the charges that both companies refuse to cover?

I HATE insurance companies. And I hate that I can't turn to Harry, Ron, and Hermione to get my mind off all this shit. It looks like I'll be turning to Little Children--the latest book club choice--for a much-needed vacation from all this. 'Cause I seriously, seriously need a break right about now.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Taste of the town

Peanut has been tackling cereal for almost two weeks now, first rice and then barley. It's times like these where having four hands would be helpful: one to hold the spoon, two to hold each of Becca's hands--keeping them from her mouth--and the final hand to swoop in with a wet paper towel when her hands inexplicably escape my grasp and rush to her full mouth.

Still, it's so amusing to watch her, especially now that she sorta hums during the feeding and opens her mouth wide for the spoon like a guppy. Or a piranha (which is how she used to view nursing).

This past weekend Sister #1 and her husband were in town, and while the boys golfed, she spent the day with the Screaming Siren and me. She was busy snapping pictures as I gave Becca her afternoon snack of rice cereal to send to Sister #2, who's in Paraguay at the moment. In the midst of the feeding, curiosity got the better of me, and I tried a tiny morsel of the cereal.

"It's sweet," I say in surprise. "I don't know if it's the rice cereal or the breast milk I mix it with..."

Sister #1 comes over and takes the spoon from me, and before I can even utter an "Uhhhg" she tries a bit also. Slack jawed I look at her.

"What's in this?" she suddenly asks, eyes wary. Umm, were you not here, say TWO SECONDS AGO?!?!

And then it clicks. Her eyes bulge, face drains of color, and she runs to the bathroom retching. And like any good sister, I explode into laughter.

Sunday, July 22, 2007


I had a suspicion all along, but now it's official:

Want to Get Sorted?
I'm a Gryffindor!

Thursday, July 19, 2007

A change in view

The other weekend my parents, The Banker, and Becca and I crammed into our car and drove to visit my dad's parents in Bella Vista. My grandparents had only seen Becca once since her birth and were anxious to see her again. With my Grammy fighting cancer and heart problems and my PopPop losing ground to Alzheimer's, we'd urged them not to make the drive to see us but to be patient and we'd make a weekend trip to visit. Finally we found the time in every one's packed schedules to make the trip.

I was on pins and needles about the whole thing. An infant in the car for HOW long? Hours at the grandparents' house? Dinner at a restaurant? And then a stay at a hotel? And a visit to my grandparents' church so they could show off their great-granddaughter? There were so many ways this could have gone badly.

But it didn't.

Becca was a champ, thoroughly behaving herself in a fashion she never does at home. She was happy, patient, and cute as a button. Why she can't pull out that attitude more for us, I'll never know. But the important thing is that the visit went incredibly well and meant the world to my grandparents.

I think the trip may have been harder on me than on Peanut. Stressful and tiring, yes. But it was more than that. My grandparents talked about moving into an assisted living facility, a decision whose time has truly come. But it forces me to look again at what I've been trying to avoid seeing---that my grandparents are old and aren't as invincible as a child thinks they are.

What's more is that my Grammy said that once they move what they'll need into the facility (whenever they get around to finding one), the grand kids need to come and pick out what they want from the house before it all goes in an estate sale. When I was young, there was nothing like going to my grandparents' house. There were so many cool nick-knacks, countless collectibles, and an assortment of tchotchkes. (Both my grandparents are serious, hoarders.)

But somewhere, somehow, the allure of my grandparents' house started to diminish. I'm not exactly sure when it happened, but all their trinkets started to look, well, junky. And on this latest visit, as I looked around, I was hard pressed to find much that I would willingly haggle over between the other grand kids. It made me sad, how the sparkle of that house had dulled. I really wish I could go back and have that feeling again--that surge of excitement and wonder as I looked around at all their stuff--instead of the sinking feeling of much work ahead and a lot of sad, abandoned items at an estate sale.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Where did it go?

There are days like today when I miss the girl I was so much that it's a palpable ache and temporarily debilitating.