Saturday, May 12, 2012

A day of games

Drowsy after arriving home from Ithaca at about midnight last night, but woke up with a happy eight-yesr-old grinning down at me because the tooth fairy came last night. It was hard to do tooth fairy duty when I was so bleary eyed from that drive (even though I was a passenger cramped into the back of my Mini Cooper while Sam drove and Gogo made sandwiches in the passenger seat beside him). But a gap toothed smile made it worth digging in the bottom of my purse for stray dollars!

It is hard to believe that Sam's freshman year is already over. Wasn't it just yesterday that he fit in the laundry basket? Exhibit A:

Yes, that's Sam and Grace. With Mother's Day approaching, my thoughts are with Gracie of course. And with all the mothers who I speak with and email who are missing their children especially hard this weekend.

I am sitting here looking out at a beautiful May day. Green leaves against bright blue sky. Dogwoods all pink and lush. Azaleas in full bloom. It made me think of a line from a Pablo Neruda poem:
"You can cut all the flowers, but you cannot keep spring from coming."

Today: Annabelle's belated bowling birthday party. Then she is off to Boston with Cousin Gina to go to the Big Apple Circus while Sam and I make dinner in preparation for a Name Game. This is our family game that involves lots of rowdy friends and good food and wine.

Tomorrow: 13 people coming for a Mother's Day cookout. Many of these people love the RI hot dog known as a saugie. I am not among those fans, so for the rest of us I am trying an interesting new recipe. Put two pork tenderloins in the slow cooker with 12 ounces of root beer and cook on low for seven hours. Then remove, shred and add BBQ sauce. I will let you know how that turns out! Mimi is bringing her version of my dad's mac and cheese. I'm making a vat of guacamole. Auntie Junie is bringing a strawberry shortcake. I'm hungry just writing all of this down!

I'm very excited to share my new knitting project with you. As some of you know, I smashed my finger pretty bad closing a tray table at Gogo's. I did that thing where it won't close so you shove really hard and it pops out and closes--on your finger. My pinky got bruised but also cut, and it was that gash that caused me so many problems. I probably needed a stitch or two, but it was late and a school night and I needed to get Annabelle home and to bed. The thought of spending the evening at the ER didn't appeal, so I wrapped the finger nice and tight and went home. Well, that curtailed my knitting for quite some time.

But I am healed, and the whole time I couldn't knit all i could think about was knitting a blanket. I ordered gorgeous yarn and found a pattern called The Wave. The yarn arrived just when my pinky got back in working order and I began to knit. I'll take pictures as I go and post them here. (I am loving being able to post pictures!)

Despite the injured finger, I had a great time in Miami teaching at Miami Dade's Writers Institute. Not only did I have talented students who I loved spending three afternoons with, but I got to see my Miami buddies and eat paella with them. From there, it was on to The Muse and the Marketplace in Boston, Grub Street's annual weekend event.

This week is mostly just Sam and Annabelle time. Big happy sigh. Then I'm off to the Dairy Hollow Artists Colony in Eureka Spring, Arkansas and the literary festival there.

Time to get party favors ready and warm up my bowling arm I hope you all enjoy today, and tomorrow remember mothers here and gone, children here and gone...because really, really, they are all still here with us. They are.