Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Biographical Sketches... Rose Standish

Feet slipping over the rocks and mud, Rose picked her way down the hill. Her head was bent against a vicious wind that whipped her skirts against her legs and stung her face. She withdrew even deeper into her rough cloak and a shiver passed through her. Pausing, she glanced up at the pale sky.

"How long?" she wondered "How long until spring finds us?" Placing the wooden pails on the ground, she rubbed her hands together, then picked them up again and, once again, slid downward toward the fort wall at the edge of the water.

Reaching the well, she joined other women filling their buckets with fresh water. Few of them spoke. It had been a long winter. Unkind, even brutal. The fact that the cold continued now even into May taxed even the most patient of them. Not wishing to complain, they said little. They all knew that they were tired of fish. They were tired of ground meal cakes that had no flavor. Most of all, they were tired of the constant cold, and the incessant wind. They wished for warm breezes. They wished for things, green and growing. Too often, unbidden, their thoughts turned to the tulip fields and meadows of daffodils at home.

"Not home." Rose reminded herself, firmly. She hoisted the filled buckets and steadied her footing as she turned her back toward the wind. England would never be home again. This was her home--the place she had chosen. She had agreed to come with her Myles. She had promised herself that she would never look back. It shamed her to admit that there were times when she let her fingers dip into the frigid waters of the Atlantic, just to touch the same ocean that touched the shores of her native land. This was something she told no one.

With the wind at her back and the weight of the filled buckets to steady her, the climb back up the hill was easier than the way down. "Let the wind carry me home" she thought, and then smiled to herself.

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Biographical Sketches... Helen Keller

I've decided to try a few short biography sketches of real people that I admire. Just an attempt to get into their heads. To try on that character, and that voice. My first one is Helen Keller. The first chapter book I ever read was one on Helen Keller, and to this day, she remains one of my favorite people. I've chosen to do a sketch on the day she met Ann Sullivan in March 1887. Helen was 7 years old, and had been blind and deaf for just over 5 years...

It was spring.

Sitting on the front porch, resting her hand on the smooth wood pillar, Helen took in a deep, hungry breath. She could tell it was spring. There were so many new smells--some of them strong, and assaulting. Some of them she had to really concentrate on. And there were smells missing; she couldn't smell as much smoke from the fires as before. The air was warm, and there was a spice to it.

Groping down off the porch, she felt towards the leaves of a bush, and then sunk down on the ground next to it. Helen dug her fingers into the dirt, and smelled the wet earth. Rubbing her fingers together, she felt the clay crumble. She dug some more, and then her finger bumped something... cool and wet. Carefully, with one finger she stroked the creature and felt it recoil and squirm. With two fingers, she lifted it up and put it on her hand. She felt it move. Then she laid it back into the dirt, careful not to smash it. She wondered what it would feel like, to be down in the dirt, where it was cool.

Scootching backward on her rear end until she felt the grass, she lay down. The grass was stiff and prickly. Not soft. It scratched through her tights. She lifted her legs off the grass and held them for as long as she could. She brought them down to the ground, hard, and was startled to feel something big and furry under them that darted away. She laughed. It must be the cat. She got up on all fours and crawled slowly toward to house, searching with her hands for the cat.

She knew that the cat hated her. It ran from her, and she had to find it. Sometimes, when she caught it, she would tug at it's fur. It would scratch at her. Then her mother would try to take the cat away. But she wouldn't let her. The cat was hers.

Suddenly, she felt soft vibrations through the ground and sat back on her heels. Someone tapped roughly on her shoulder. Martha. Only Martha would poke her like that. She made a sign to Martha that meant "WHAT?" and Martha replied by pulling on one of her hands. That meant she was to come inside. She signed again "WHAT?" and Martha rubbed her face. She needed to get clean. Her mother was always wanting her to get clean. To meet new people.

She sighed and got up, allowing Martha to lead her inside the house. She dragged her feet whistfully, and took another deep breath. But it was such a beautiful day.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Merry Christmas.

As we sprinkled reindeer food on the lawn tonight, I got impatient and dumped the rest of the baggie out in a pile on the lawn.

My husband snorted and said "Who's that for? Fatzen?"

Then he chuckled and continued "On Dasher! On Dancer! On Prancer! On Fatzen!!! FATZEN! GET UP! GOOOOOO!!!"


I feel a story in the works. Tailored especially for obese childrens. ;)

Merry Christmas!

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Revised Christmas List...

I made up my Christmas list weeks ago.

But I've changed my mind.

I want new stuff:
  • I want the germs that are plaguing my house to cease and desist. No more vomiting. Please. And if my 15 month old could stop emitting farts that smell like a Port-a-Potty on a July afternoon at the fair, that would be AWESOME.
  • I want to be able to find a pair of tweezers. I know. It sounds like an odd request. But, somewhere in this house, I own FOUR PAIRS of tweezers. And yet my eyebrows are starting to look more and more Old Saint Nick-ish by the day because I.can't.find. a single pair. All four of them would make a great stocking stuffer.
  • Somehow in the past week, the name ABBY has appeared on my darling, perfect, red mama chair. I love this mama chair. It's my favorite Craigslist find ever. But the big, black ABBY is really kind of killing the appeal. When I asked my kids, glaring at the 5 year old, WHO wrote it, they responded "Um... Abby?" I would like "Abby" remover.
  • I would like my kids to decide that wearing pants is a good idea. Especially if they insist on dancing in front of the front window to "Run, Run, Rudolph", as is their habit.
  • I would like "The Drummer Boy" to never.darken.my.doorstep.again. I'll bet his mother hated the drum every bit as much as I do.
  • My cheekbones. (Okay, it's a repeat request. I asked for them back in 2005, 2006, 2008, as well. But, hey, at least 2007 was a good year.)

That's all for now, but stay tuned. It may change again.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Year 2: In which I never post because of "stuff."

I am currently not wearing a bra.

This is unthinkable for me.

But the Childrens have just been so darn needy this morning. They're always wanting something. Some of them are understandable. Like breakfast. Cereal. Not that cereal. That one. Without milk. No. With milk in a cup. Not that cup. That's a boy cup.


And now the Wee One, henceforth known as the GREMLIN, wants her thumb sucked, but she doesn't want to do the sucking herself. She wants ME to do it. And if I don't? Then she's going to sit there ON my bosoms (because they are hanging THAT LOW thanks to her and her siblings) and cry/whine/act like a teenager denied her prom date.

Fine. I'll even suck your thumb for you. Lazy child.

But can I at least get a bra on???