Monday, May 13, 2013

Reflections on my mother's day

Should you require some light and entertaining reading, this is not it. Happiness sits somewhere else at the moment, not on this chair. This is not a complain rant - do not misunderstand what I am trying to say. It rather is what it says in the title, the thoughts I had this Mother's Day and connecting all the dots. It also does not mean that I am not grateful for the great things I have in life and the love and generosity I experience. I am good at seeing the beauty of being even when it is dark in my soul. But sometimes we need to say how it is and how we feel, express truth and honesty instead of superficial niceties.

Mother's Day started like any day in the past weeks, waking up from horrible dreams that leave me in a state of anxiety, dread and depression. They always center around the same things, just the scenery changes. I am usually in some urban place with just a bag of things. I am new to the place, I have no money and no place to stay. I am essentially poor and homeless because of choices I made in life and I don't know where to go. Usually I end up in a cafe somewhere - I guess I have enough money for a latte - and I share a table with a really nice mom and her adorable children. They are spirited and interesting and artsy and I have a nice conversation with the mom, while in the back of my head, I envy her. The whole back of my head must be green, because she is pretty and her kids are 'normal' and she has darn great hair. This is were the dream changes to me moving around the streets, looking for some clue what to do next. And then the finale is always some ex-family gathering where people pretend to be nice and then betray me, which seems all fine and dandy to everybody around me and only I am in deep emotional turmoil. At this point I wake up in a panic and try to tell myself that it was just a dream and that everything will be fine - but will it?

That is a very great shitty start into Mother's Day and only a strong cup of tea helps me find my inner calm again. Then I worked for 15 hours and and had the uebercrappy day crowned with my wide format printer breaking before I was done with my current project. A project that has been going wrong every step of the way and was already overdue. Lately everything has been breaking around me or goes really wrong, making me wonder if there is a curse on me. How is that related to Mother's Day? Actually in many ways.

We all had ideas what our life would look like and what we will do with it. And we had definite ideas what our family life would look like. I knew I was going to be a writer for public radio and have four children and a really fun husband who likes my quirky humor, knitted sweaters, sex and great cooking. Like everybody else, I experienced reality kicking in, which for me centers around being a mother. When you spend 15 hours rendering, transcoding and burning videos, you actually are quite free to ponder. Fueled by the bad dreams and people's lovely Mother's Day posts on Facebook, I could not stop pondering and being depressed - not that it depressed me that friends had a nice day, it did not - being depressed about how things turned out in my life, because it all centers around being a mother. Never in my mind had I thought I would become a stay at home mom. I always saw myself as a working mother, easily juggling my adorable, artsy children and my fantastic work life. I have worked since I was thirteen, I sometimes skipped school to work as that was the only way I could save up money for a walkman (remember those) or going to England on vacation. Growing up in a beautiful and affluent part of town as one of the few working class kids, jobs were essential because the Walmart type jeans just did not cut it at school. Even when I had the right jeans, I was still bullied, because no amount of jobs could change my hair. So I spent all my money on vinyl and my time on being a political activist. But that is a different story. I had worked for 20 years by the time I had my first child.

Motherhood came after being sick as a dog from day 10 after conception to delivery and being big as a beached whale due to preeclempsia. The blissful dream of motherhood was shattered loudly by screaming. A beautiful baby with a perfect apgar score and amazing lungs. The day she was born I said she will be a singer (Hear that Handel & Haydn?). When you walk around the dining room table (actually a door on shop stands) for 9 hours, because that is the only thing that keeps her somehow content, you do it. Once I did it for 14 hours. Having her in the baby car seat and moving her swiftly up and down worked as well, but my arms gave out after less than an hour. Yesterday I found a picture I made of her when she was a year old. I had made angel wings and a halo and sat her on blankets and then photo-shopped it into an angel. In all seriousness, I worked a whole day on her complexion, because she had been crying the whole time. I found the picture in a folded piece of cardboard with a rubber band around it and a post-it that said "angels do exist and they wake up screaming." The screaming stopped after 18 month, because her reflux was under control. It stopped for about a day, because she stayed as high strung and spirited when the terrible twos started and lasted a few years. Don't get me wrong, I loved and love her to pieces, but the first 10 years were hard, hard work. And now, in our fifteenth year, there still is screaming at times. When I got very ill with endometriosis a year into motherhood, the most logical thing was to have another child as fast as possible and boom, there we had number two (technically number three, but that is also a different story). The pediatrician was shocked that I was going to have another one, no actually, she and all the nurses were mortified. They loved my baby, but who would in all seriousness risk having another pretty screamer. But number two did not cry much at all, did not need to be held, actually preferred to be left alone to stare into the distance. Her dealing with reflux was not screaming, but rather refusal to eat since she constantly had a sore throat from that stupid reflux and an oral aversion - let's just say not a perfect apgar score and lots of suction. No extreme being right, I kept on wondering if she was autistic, but she did not quite fit into what I knew as autism? I loved and love her to pieces as well.

So there I had two beautiful and intelligent children. I got good at two things: ebay shopping and researching about reflux, ADD, Sensory Processing Disorder, Spirited Children, Asperger's Syndrome, Duane's Syndrome, anxious children, croup, pneumonia, Lyme disease, mood disorders, brushing techniques, chart making, creative parenting and so forth. I saw their amazing talents blossoming early - one singing and talking, the other drawing and writing. I became their daily coach, their driver to therapies and psychologists, their personal OT, specialist in behavior modification, doctor, advocate, nurse, homeschool teacher in the afternoon and so forth. It is a long list. As a mother I am very accomplished, I think I did well. I am proud of my children, because despite their many issues, they turned out great (I know, I know, we are not done yet) and most people have no clue about the trials and tribulations we have been through. I am proud of what I gave them. I could have been better for sure, but I also could have been worse. I did not plant a garden with them and knit them sweaters for every Christmas, we did not have long story hours by the fire place (too fidgety), but maybe I can do that with grandchildren (stop laughing!). Instead of a career I became good at nesting: building furniture, sewing Halloween clothing, muffin expert, remodeling the house, painting and building them the best friggin' playground between here and Pennsylvania. Because I hate going to the park where I get the same looks as in high school. I know I don't have fabulous hair and yes, I am quite aware that I am not skinny.

How is that related to my dreams and my fears of being homeless and destitute? There is a direct causality actually, because I traded my independence and career for motherhood of special children. They are special in two different ways: neurologically and also talented. Things seemed to be on the track of finding a groove once we hit the tween years - instead the train derailed and in quite the betrayal - there we have that dream motive - my husband left me, telling me he had known for quite a while that he wants a divorce. If you look at statistics of divorce and special children, there is an unbelievable high percentage. I don't blame it on my children as that would be irrational, if anything, I know we should not have gotten married so soon and with the notion the other will change and I should not have left my dream career path for what I thought was love. (Let's ignore for a minute here that he is also of that specialness like the kids, had a great coach and nobody would suspect that he is not what he appears to be). We had been roommates for more than a decade, it was emotionally the right step to separate. Except, there I was - an accomplished mother. Great resume line, don't you think? Oh, and I can fix a dryer - whoohoo!  I thought how my family back home had always been complaining that I wasted my life and questioned why I had gotten my master's degree. I did not worry about that then, because I knew I would write my PHD thesis as soon as I would be at home with kids. Later it changed to when life was getting on track - after all the thesis was already half done anyway; except I never never found that track. Stellar student with amazing grades and favorite of professors, talented in so many ways turns down all opportunities in life and winds up walking around a makeshift table in Los Angeles for hours on end. Hm. By now my mentors have probably mostly died off...

I would not do it differently though - a conundrum of sorts - because I am at a miserable spot and clueless what to do next. I could take a job at a super market or Starbucks, but then I would waste my talents even further. I shelved the writing (pun intended) for another time and just hope that I am not taken before I can write my book about death or my young adult saga about the Ring  & Niebelungen saga (think Wagner opera story lines). I have learned one thing from turning down opportunities because they were not on my intended track: take them and go with the flow. The flow has brought me back to art, photography and video and so I am trying to go there. Do the Tao thing, go with the curves. Now the curves feel like the serpentine roads of the San Bernadino pass in the Alps and I really feel like puking. I feel so overwhelmed - everything is breaking, appliances, printers, cars and my spirit. Things just keep going wrong and meanwhile I am anxious and exhausted. The children are going on their own paths in 4, respectively 5, years and for one thing, I want to give them the best formative years I can and secondly, I cannot really plan much, because it all depends on what they want to do. With us having no savings, who knows what second education is possible. School in Germany is free, but who knows if they would want to go and I am sure their father would not exactly encourage that.

I told you in the beginning, if you want to read happy things, this is not it. At times I want to throw in the towel, but I cannot do that, because the kids need me and I would not do that to my mother. But the notion exemplifies how cornered I feel and I got myself into the corner by doing the right thing. Lately I have worked myself into a frenzy with pro bono work, I have forsaken friendship maintenance and I am so damn tired. Here we go, I have connected the dots. Mother's Day is tying it all up, not in a neat bushel of wild flowers with a love note, not with breakfast in bed or an ill-fated cake experiment that tastes of love, no, it is tying it all up into one picture. A picture of what is now - 20 years ago I won an award in an art competition, sold my first piece and had successful art shows - now I am a mess of derailments. And every night before I go to bed, I lay out clothing to jump into, just in case I have to rush number two to the ER because croup never goes away for some special children. While doing the rendering and transcoding yesterday, I did some reading on bad dreams that cannot be shaken. And it said everywhere to analyze them. Don't try to forget them, but understand them. So now I have a complete picture where I am now and how I got to this lonely Mother's Day filled with work, frustration, tears and desperation.

I never did the Mother's Day thing for my mother. I told my mother that she could pick between me being nice one day or me being nice the rest of the year. I was a good kid, compliant through fear. Of course, now that I am a mother and an adult, I see that Mother's Day is not about being nice for a day, it is a celebration of motherhood and maybe to honor all the sacrifices mothers make. It is too late to make my mother breakfast in bed, she is far away and she only eats a piece of dry rye bread and some radishes anyway. And my girls somehow never learned it, just like their father, they don't know what to do or what is right and so they choose not to do anything. Some people are good at those things, some are not. It is a bit disappointing if you are really good at it and live with people who are not - they are better at other things. The good thing though? I have the best anti dote to feeling like this - and it is not looking at all the people who have it worse, because that only works sometimes, not all the times and I use it already so very much. No, the very best antidote is hanging out with my girls. They are the best company - unless they bicker and fight, which they do, a lot, a tremendous lot - they are funny and quirky and smart and interesting. So every day I spend with them is Mother's Day. Days without them - meh. I love them to bits and pieces and maybe that is what Mother's Day is about as well, acknowledging how much you love them and that it is okay that you gave a big part of your life for them.

Who knows what comes next. Maybe a visit to the hairdresser. And going to the movies with the girls - yes, definitely!

Monday, July 25, 2011

Jean-Yves Thibaudet made me cry

Yesterday beautiful music made me cry. I was so touched and moved by Jean-Yves Thibaudet's piano performance of the second movement of Ravel's piano concerto in G (Adagio assai), that my heart and soul were so full of emotion, that slowly the tears were just meandering over my sunny face.

We had spent the day at Tanglewood for the Boston Symphony Orchestra's All Ravel program under the direction of Emmanual Krivine. As always, our day started with a bit of stress to get ready - I have high expectations what a proper picnic looks like and therefore put a lot of effort into it - and a grumpy child had not realized it was an all day affair and had to say no to a spontaneous pool party invitation. Her bad mood lingered on for a few hours, but the special atmosphere on the lawn at Tanglewood slowly soothed her mind enough to be bearable. Two Shrewsbury friends hooked up with us on the lawn, which was wonderful and changed the dynamic of our group and made for nice conversation.

Tanglewood is rather special, the huge music hall called shed opens to the fantastic old park with beautiful trees and a wonderful lawn. Hundreds of groups of people scatter over the lawns with their chairs, blankets and gourmet picnics. We got a very nice place close to the Koussevitzky Music Shed and had a much better sound experience than prior visit (sunburn included). So imagine all these people hanging about on a lovely Sunday afternoon, surrounded by the gorgeous Berkshire mountains, having fun and conversation. A few times the old bell rings and all of a sudden the concert starts and amazingly, from one second to another, it is dead silent. You could hear the grass grow.

The program started with the Mother Goose Suite and I had forgotten how much I love The Fairy Garden and it transported me far away into my dream world. The suite was followed by the concerto and well deserved standing ovations and repeated appearances of Krivine and Thibaudet. The amazing concerto for the left hand (very interesting story!), which I could not even do with both of my hands and the Bolero finalized the concert.

The piano is a magnificent instrument, but it is not very often that a pianist just completely blows me away and touches something so deep inside me, I have no words to describe it. Maybe too often it is perfection and mechanics and not magic? I had known Tchaikovsky's piano concerto No. 1 for many years as a teenager and never cared for it that much. Then I heard it played by Ivo Pogorelić and I swear, it was an utterly different piece and I had to listen to it three times in a row and again and again for many days. It was a revelation and so was Thibaudet yesterday.

I think it is very interesting how the same piece of music / same score can be so different in outcome depending on the orchestra and director. I remember when CDs were still newer and I would listen to every recording of a piece to see which one spoke to me. Karajan for example never spoke to me, strange, I cannot even tell you exatly why. For years I could not find a recording of Schubert's 8th Symphony that I liked. I once heard a recording of Dvoraks New World Symphony that hit me so deep, I pulled to the side of the road and sat there, tears streaming down through the whole symphony and it was like nothing else existed at that moment.

When everything is right and the interpretation speaks to you in all your depth, something amazing happens inside you, connecting heart and soul and rationale and whatever else lingers inside us. I am extremely grateful that Thibaudet mad me cry tears of beauty, to remind me again why I love Ravel so very much and also fling back into my life the one thing that always helps me in more difficult times: the magic of music.

Nothing exists without music, for the universe itself is said to have been framed by a kind of harmony of sounds, and heaven itself revolves under the tones of that harmony.
Isodore of Seville (c.568-636 AD) archbishop and saint

Saturday, July 23, 2011

A new approach to un-clutter

I hold on to too many things.

For one I always have ideas what I could use things for and I have so many things in the first place, because I have so many ideas. I have spent money on them and maybe I find time to use them one day for my many great ideas, in theory.  Meanwhile, I am running out of space, have less and less time to actually turn my ideas into something tangible and even if I do, I am not as good as I used to be, since I have a general loss of patience and peace. My sewing, carpentry and art skills were definitely at a better place before my brain got fragmented due to living a life in quarter hour chunks. And then there are the boxes and boxes of material and product of my sort of defunct company, since I want to devote myself to writing, which is the purpose of my existence actually. But I have a hard time really saying goodbye forever to my company.

Then there are mementos of my former life - too many, even though I reduced them greatly before filling a container and shipping it from Bavaria to Los Angeles in '96. I had figured that great memories will stay in my head and it was a moving ritual to burn old love letters in the fireplace one by one - that was before I had mommy-brain-dementia. And then there is my first laptop, a whole lot antique kitchen things from ancestors long ago .... I get a headache just looking into that corner and my gaze moves to the boxes of decorations - Halloween and Easter quite manageable, but Christmas? O Gosh. I could go on and on with this list, but I assume it is already rather boring.

The thing is, it all ties me down, makes me crazy, leaves no room in a tangible and spiritual sense - I need to free myself. But how? I have been trying for so long and it just does not get better - or should I say less? It is not that I am a hoarder, we donate a lot, happily give things to friends and family, Freecycle and Craigslist things away. Still, the pace is not right. So I had an idea.

Having been so utterly unhappy with my existence as a whole - happy in some fragments though - I have been creating this parallel dream world that I escape to. Partially it came out of real dreams at night, which makes the people, the place, the voices, the scents and sounds very real in my head. This all is happening in England, an old, charming country home. So I asked myself, if this would be true and not a dream, what would I take with me? What would be important? Voila, I have my angle. I imagine I am preparing for a move in a couple of month and I picture myself with I-will-not-name-who-I-dream-about and our oh so harmonious and wonderful life and guess what, it makes it SO much easier to let go.

I wonder if we can take little pieces of our day dreams and turn them into something real, some small details and bigger ideas as well. Dreaming and hoping are incredible forces if they are not tethered onto expectations I think. I have to do a lot of sorting, 14 bins and boxes of paperwork from the kids are my start (some huge Rubbermaid storage containers), surely a few drawings and little stories they wrote and some cards they made are enough to come with me. Even if I really not going anywhere.

Friday, July 22, 2011

claymation camp

The girls went to a claymation camp at the Worcester Art Museum and this is their first movie: I think it is very cute and I hope they do more!

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Vicious cycle of pain, depression and desperation

This is a serious rant about the state I am in and I am not sure if this is something I should even post here in this public place of my blogosphere.... but then again, life is not always sunshine and cupcakes and smiles and all good. I mostly pretend to be the happy and balanced person, at least most people think that of me and I am very good at hiding what is really going on. One of the lessons of being bullied as a kid, when I learned not to show any kind of emotion. So here, I will say it and if it comes to haunt me, so be it.

Lately I am derailed off my tracks at any instant. From teeny tiny things like putting a lot of quarters in the parking meter at the library only to find it closed (budget cuts) or two bathing suits disintegrating within 3 days (quality cuts + chlorine) to the big things like not getting a handle on my health. My severe Endometriosis ist being treated with shots of hormones helping me to not spend a majority of my time with ridiculously bad pelvic cramps. The down side of the medication though, beside the weight gain and loss of lust (sorry could not resist, sounds so funny 'loss of lust') it makes me swing between extreme anger and severe depression with constant crying fits. Obviously that is not a solution. At times I wish I would drop dead. So there, I said it.

I read somewhere that one of the side effects is psychosis and I wonder if that is why I feel that I am completely alone and have no friends whatsoever, which rationally I know not to be true, well, maybe - I cannot tell, because my brain feels to muddled. I know that I know a lot of really nice people here, but what I definitely miss is a best friend though. I had one from teenage years to motherhood at which point our tracks went in completely different directions and were absolutely incompatible. But I miss having a best friend who you take small vacations with, full of adventure, visit exhibitions and go to concerts, help each other with whatever and mostly talk about anything and at any time and well, you probably know, if you ever had that one person closest, a person who really knows you and understands you. I am lonely. I felt lonely before the medication, now I feel forsaken. So there, I said it.

 The depth of the problem is compounded by my lower back problems. My three disks were doing alright until I was so utterly stupid to lift two 80 pound cement bags, because I really wanted a project done. Of course I have been out of commission since that stupid move and the project is further away from completion than before. My chiropractor is trying everything he can to get everything back in order, I swim and swim and swim, take enough Ibuprofen to blow a big hole into my stomach lining, ice it over and over and relax it with valium. I can hardly make it through the day without painkillers. So there, I said it.

All my projects are on hold and my sole existence is to serve my seemingly grumpy and ungrateful, but sometimes very funny and definitely loved children. It seems that I do nothing much but drive them to and from places, get or return friends, shop and cook for them and their friends. The explosive and attention challenged one is riddled with teenage-hormonal rollercoaster like mood swings and in turn makes me explode, since my reserves are all drained by the little genius with the necessity to have everything in her life micromanaged by me, essentially making me have to live her life on top of mine. My children drive me insane. So there, I said it.

And while I write this, I get another of these crazy crying fits and I think to myself, this is not me actually. But something is seriously broken. I am broken - there, I said that, too. And now? Well, life goes on, I'll wipe the tears away and take my children and three of their friends to the lake, pretending that the abyss in my soul is not there and succeed half the time through distraction and company. So there.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

P52/13: Find

Driftwood with a story from one of the most beautiful places in the world: Montagna de Oro in California. This piece is about 5 feet tall, it was even longer when I found it, but I had to make it shorter to fit in the car to go home. The spousal unit refuses to help with driftwood in any capacity as a matter of principle, so I had to schlep this by myself up to the car, it was still soaked and therefore very heavy. Back home in Pasadena, a bunch of carpenter bees thought it lovely as well and moved in. I tried smoking them out with incense, which failed to evict them, but might have turned them Catholic. When we moved to Pennsylvania, our fantastic movers had the brilliant idea to wrap the whole thing in a multitude of plastic layers and told me to just leave it in the garage for the duration of the Pennsylvania winter. It worked and I was finally able to have it inside. And then we moved it to Massachusetts.

This find is so big and unusual, everybody visiting us has to comment on it, touch the curves and smooth wood and tries to see something in the shapes, like cloud watching on a summer day.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

P52/12: Patchwork

Though traditionally made of fabric, this patchwork is paper on canvas. It is a small section of a three canvas collage that I made for a paper art contest 'Blue'. The three are dusk & dawn, water & air, night & day. Can you guess which one this section is part of?

Saturday, April 2, 2011

P52/11: Glass

Still trying to catch up with Project 52 and therefore I picked a picture from the archives, showing one of the first fused glass pendants I made in my kiln. I love glass and prefer a unique shaped piece of sea glass or kiln fired glass over some fancy, frilly and expensive jewelery.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

P52/10 - Wanderlust/Fernweh

There is no fitting word in the English language for Fernweh, which is the yearning for places far away. Even though wanderlust comes close, I do consider it more of an antsy wanting to be on the move generally rather than wanting to go to a place far away. Home sickness can usually be considered the opposite of wanderlust, except in my case where the yearning for far away places and the yearning for home is one and the same.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Alphabet Soup - letter B

B is for Buddha. In dire need of some peace on his perilous journey, Peter Pan consulted with the Buddha.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Alphabet Soup - letter F

F is for Fire. Usually battling with sword, wit and the ability to fly rather fast, Peter Pan had to come to terms with his mortality when massive flames were working their way towards him. I am happy to report that he escaped yet again, unscathed I might add - or should I say unsinged?

Sunday, March 6, 2011

P52/9: Contrast

This week's, well, to be precise actually last week's photo challenge topic is contrast and really, ANY picture could fall under that. So does a really wide open topic make it easier or harder? I guess it just depends on our personality. Anyway, no long ramblings needed this week, but comments are still very welcome :)

Monday, February 21, 2011

P52/8: Technology - Friend or Foe?

This week’s challenge is thought provoking. Coming from Germany it is not actually about technology, but the term ‘Technik’, which shockingly does not even have an English translation. The root of the word comes from ancient Greek τέχνη (téchnē) meaning skill, art and labor/trade. Consequently I need to define the challenge for me as this is a huge area and almost anything could be part of it, like cutting parsley with a sharp knife. If I consider the question in its most basic idea, the answer would have to be that technology is our friend, because that is what makes us human: the making and use of tools? Looking at weaponry and other tools of evil points the other way though. Tough question it is!

* click for big!

Therefore, I have decided to interpret technology in regards to this challenge as man made tools with a concrete purpose and use and also being very complex in their built. So narrowing it down like this I conclude in line with my typical juxtapositional mindset, that the answer is both. I associate technology with pollution, noise and other annoyances, dehumanizing our lives with mechanical and electronic means, pushing us further away from the basics of life. Then again, I am an early adopter and embrace technology left and right as walking though the house shows clearly.

We have a house full of tools that help with cooking, cleaning, wood work and regulate temperature and humidity. They freeze, boil, melt, cut, move, print and even curl hair. My studio has a as many gadgets as the kitchen or the work shop. Looking further we get to computers, ipods and digital cameras (making me wish we had more Apple stock and at least some Canon). We use technology to be entertained, to stay in virtual touch or arrange for real socializing, to be creative and to be not creative, to make time and to kill time, to help us make a mess in the kitchen and to help us clean it up again. It helps us move faster or slower and even tells us where to go, it makes our world brighter and louder. It makes life easier and it makes life harder. (I’d like to meet the person that has not yelled at a piece of technology out of frustration.)

We all take the harder and the frustration for the reward, video chatting with friends on the other side of the world, picture sharing and critique through blogging and watching BBC’s Robin Hood streaming through the marvel called Wii. And when we are without power - something rather routine in this part of the world - we just as happily sit by the fire, read books, play boardgames, write with ink and take our instruments and make music. So yes, technology is a friend, but we are okay with an occasional leave of absence.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

P52/7: All Red

If there would be a color to describe the relationship of my girls with each other, it would be red. Red because they love each other and red because they hate each other - all red! Click to see it in all its glory.

Isn't it often that what looks easy and straightforward needs us to have second look and deeper thought? This weeks photo challenge had the title 'All Red' and I did not want to run out and just take a picture of something red without a thought behind it, because I love when I look at other people's contributions and find myself completely surprised by the way they find their own individual way of interpreting the topic.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Alphabet Soup - letter S

S is for steering wheel. Instead of basking in the sunshine on this calm Sunday afternoon, Peter was in peril yet again, having been hoisted onto the steering wheel, expected to do the driving. 495 North was busy as ever and it took all his concentration for happy thoughts and depleted the remaining stash of faery dust at his disposal.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

P52/6: Tea Party

click the pictures to see them big :)

Our feud with the faeries reached its high when they hijacked our tea party this week. It all started with the collapse of their faery houses under the weight of snow and ice and their decision to move into our house. We are very understanding people, especially when it comes to magic folks, but living with them was next to impossible. Tripping over tiny horses again and again, getting hurt by out of control unicorns and our cats would chase the faeries with the pegasus hard on their heels. Our house turned into a mad house. Instead of helping to solve the mystery of disappearing socks, they were dancing on the piano keys to make very unsettling twelve tone music and forcefully evicted all Playmobil people from their houses in a wicked ploy to move in themselves. Now we had those folks running about as well.

We called a summit of their leaders with the CEO of our household, but diplomacy failed and war was declared when I called them faeries and not elves. Apparently when you bestow the Franco-Anglican term onto Germanic magic folks, you are a fool and thus the feud began. In their clever and cunning ways, they started playing tricks on us, switching salt and sugar, leaning ‘purely by accident’ onto the Wii power button when we were about to get a first place, putting cayenne pepper into our wine glasses when we were not looking, lighting matches directly under the smoke alarms in the middle of the night, dousing the cats in expensive perfume, hiding car keys in the pastry flour and eating all our chocolate.

It proofed impossible to catch them all for a return to nature and I was tired of surprises like finding the floor covered in glue in the morning or children missing the school bus, because the wee ones had knotted up all shoelaces incredibly tight. To provide a little rest from this mess, we decided to have a little tea party. We had barely sat down when the wee folk descended onto our party like ants onto sugar cubes. In our favor and some kind of cosmic justice though, their last mischievous deed turned around unto them.

First, Feya the oldest burnt her feet landing on a teapot and Surah’s parrot drowned in a pot of milk. Yasira got stuck in the lemon bars and feared for the life, since Eyela & Ophira were devouring one after the other and showed no signs of slowing down. Tinuveel unknowingly had a piece of salmon sandwich and went into anaphylactic shock due to allergies. Apricum was mortified when his love Feya the third dove head first into the sugar cubes, he tried to hide in the creamer because he did not like to watch her flying on a sugar rush. Oleana, the smallest and youngest, ate a whole rum infused cherry and passed out, just like Falaroy, who slurped tea with rum and was drunk as a skunk. Arelan overdid it with the cucumber sandwiches, which gave him never ending hiccups while Sera II was stuck to the orange marmalade she was trying to get for her twin Sera I and the scones. Nimsay and Lindariel ate too many berries, resulting a belly aches.

It was not a catastrophy for all involved, Bilara and Iloris who had nurtured a thorough dislike of the other for a long time, noticed that they shared the same dream of bathing in whipped cream and small tendrils of friendship grew. Only Nuray and Turag, who had already maximized their daily weight watchers points, refrained from joining the feast, as well as Marween, who was content to listen to the mayhem from her perch and Feya the youngest, who took a foot bath in tepid Earl Grey.

Were we upset to have out tea party hijacked like this? At first yes, but when we woke up the next morning to find our house devoid of tricks and rather quiet, we realized that the faery-elves had left. They must have felt that it was impossible to be mischievous with us after being so thoroughly embarrassed by their own bad behavior. Come spring, we shall put some lemon bars in the vicinity of their dwellings, as a sign of peace.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

P52/5: In & Out

I am going in & out of the house all day long and therefore I am in & out of my clogs constantly. In the past many decades clogs have been in & out repeatedly, but I never cared and have worn them happily all my life.

This was a tough topic for me and after a week of juggling different ideas, I went back to my very first one, clogs. If this topic would have been English based, it would have been easy, however in German it refers to fashion - picture Heidi Klum on Project Runway saying it and you get the picture. I am not a person who cares much about what is in and out, I think a lot of creative beings have more of a focus on their individuality and march to their own drum, if anything they might be trend setters and not followers.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Alphabet Soup - letter J

Jurassic Park - this is not how Peter had imagined it when he booked his vacation. How could he have known that it was a real, real like Neverland? Maybe he should have consulted a more reputable travel agency, because this was worse than dealing with Capt'n Hook. Hopefully Tinkerbell was coming shortly to help him out of this.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

P52/4: "when I was little"

When I was little I would lay on the carpet for hours on end, listening to stories. I would listen to the same ones over and over again, knowing every voice by heart, mouthing the dialogue in unison with the speakers and anticipating every crackle and hiss from the worn old records.

staying warm

This has been a record year for snow and there is no end in sight. Couple that with very cold temperatures and it feels like exceptional circumstances and not like ordinary workdays. Even though I should work on my two major to do items - which would be working on my stories and organizing the house - I seem to be more inclined to work on staying warm and comfortable. So this is how I spent my day on arctic Monday: make a fire - put on thick, woolen socks - read under a blanket - make a pot of rooibush - bake a bread - eat said bread with a freshly made spelt & onion soup - drink delicious, piping hot and überheatlhy elderberry juice - take a bath.