But I figure you all knew where I was.
Yeah-- sometimes life really DOES trump blogging--not often, I'll grant you, but when it happens, well, it's best just to let it.
On Friday night, I got home from work completely wiped out. I mean... just... braindead and destroyed. More ready for a break than I possibly have been since Squishie's very first year. And then I returned a call from my stepmom--turns out, Easter had been moved up a day, and that phone call was my 12 hour warning. (What--your mother isn't a time lord too? Because mine will tell me when we're celebrating holidays, birthdays, and why I shouldn't be tired after running for eight hours on crackers and fruit roll ups.) After spending that night in tears and stressing--because, hey, I may have mentioned, I was all ready to be overwrought--I managed to go shopping the next day and spend all of our food money on chocolate and toys for the kids the next morning. (I don't know about you, but sudden deadline advancement does NOT make me the best shopper in the world). Mate boiled the potatoes and I made the potato salad thinking "Hey--at least I bought this stuff earlier!" and completely overlooked the fact that in my week long coma, I bought garlic powder with parsley (and whose sadistic idea was that? Fucker.) instead of garlic salt and my potato salad tasted VERY different than it usually does.
But all that was detail. The landscape was, we moved Easter up by 24 hours to keep us out of the rain, and my little kids ran around for the entire day in the backyard playing with their cousins. The landscape was, my big kids got together with the kids they'd grown up with, told jokes we wish they didn't know and generally had a good time connecting with family.
It was a very good day.
I had a moment though.
The oldest of the 'cousins' (okay--none of these 'cousins' are related by blood) is now 24 years old. He walked up to me and said, "Hey Amy!" and I got my hug (because he's a good kid, that's why,) and I suddenly flashed to Sal, the young man whose funeral I attended. Much was made about Sal being the oldest of his cousins, and I suddenly realized that I'd had the family experience through my kids and their lives if not through my own of being one of a reconnecting group of young people--and that Dillon was very much like Sal in his roll of oldest. I looked at this kid--whom I've known his whole life--and almost burst into tears.
Of course, me being me, I solved this problem by telling him, "Hey--if your Aunt Amy starts looking at you like you have an incurable disease and tearing up, here's why."
Sweet kid--he listened sympathetically, and then made me laugh. I know some awesome young people--I need to remember that.
Anyway, I've got some pictures but they're on Chicken's camera--I'll see if I can't get her to load them up! In the meantime, I've got some conversation snippets for you... and some wishes that you had a good day yourselves!
This one is Zoomboy, who still believes in magic:
"Hey mom... the Easter bunny has *spies*!
"How do you know the Easter bunny has spies in our house?"
"Because he knew that I wanted the tree frog with red eyes stuffed animal for April. I told you that every day and he KNEW!"
"Yup. The Easter Bunny has spies in our house, go figure."
This one is Dillon, 'Oldest Cousin', holding court:
"Okay, Aunt Amy, the thing I don't get, is, if you're gonna do vampire/werewolf/dragon porn, how come there aren't any lesbians?"
"Cause that's not the sort of thing that flips my switch, darlin'."
"Yeah, well, if you ever start writing about lesbian dragons, let me know. Because THAT'S some shit I would READ!"
This one is Maiden Teacher Cousin, asking me inappropriate things about my book research:
"But... how do you know how to DO those things?"
"Uhm... you know... it's... it's sex. I've been doing it with the same person for twenty-three years. You, uhm, get, you know. Creative."
"But I don't even like REGULAR sex."
"You know, I think I hear Zoomboy calling... I've got to go..."
This one is me talking to Oldest Cousin and my Crazy Friend Wendy after Zoomboy asks us what our 'most secret fear' was. His, by the way, is Zombies.
"My secret fear? My secret fear is attending a funeral in the biggest Catholic church in the city, with all sorts of political figures, the entire high school football team, a bunch of my colleagues and three news crews, and having my underwear roll down off my ass underneath my skirt as I walk to my pew."
Oldest Cousin nods his head sagely. "Well, gee, Aunt Amy--that sounds like a really, uhm, SPECIFIC kind of secret fear."
"Well," I replied, "It is NOW!"
And this is one I had with my husband as I was making potato salad. (I actually sent this to one of you not long after it happened... it was just too good not to share.)
I was wrapping up my Beauty and the Beast story and trying to get a quote from Mate. The idea was, I could dedicate the story to him... you know,
"This is for my husband who can always spot the _______________ under the gooey, creamy exterior."
Sort of a 'see below the surface' idea, to, you know, fit into the 'Beauty and the Beast' motif.
His initial ideas were... uhm...
"Chocolate. I can spot the chocolate under your gooey, creamy exterior."
"Chocolate? OMG-- that makes me sound like sugar shock, waiting to happen."
"Well... you're sweet all the way through!"
"Can't you spot something... you know... different? My inner super model? My core-of-steel-determination?"
"Your Louisiana hot-link?"
"OH. MY. GOD."
"Yeah, that was a bad one. What do you want me to say-- like I said, you're just sweet all the way through!"
"But I want there to be something better on the inside than the way I look on the outside!"
(In complete desperation--seriously--I had a kitchen knife in my hand because I was cooking, and the poor guy was cornered...)
"But there's nothing WRONG with your outside! How am I supposed to answer this stupid question anyway?"
I'm keeping him--and woe betide anyone who tries to stop me:-)