28 October 2011

say yes...

nine thirty last night and lillie and i are two hours into studying for her science exam and only halfway to an a. she wanted me smack next to her and i already hate the day when she no longer wants that so i say yes.

but then she wanted me to make her a coffee. and i say no.

and then? i read this. forwarded it to pat.

and made her a coffee.

try to say yes loads and loads this weekend and make an overflow of good memories. i think it'll matter when we look back on all this, don't you? xoxo.

27 October 2011

three reasons why...

i decided to list three reasons why it's a very good day. already. just to drown out why it's probably not.

i made pad thai for dinner last night, and i'm still smiling about that this morning. you guys! you know i'm completely disinterested in dinner and also that i specialize in two ingredients or less! and the best part is that both grae and uncle sugar - my two chopped champions - gobbled. it. up. and both of them talked about it again this morning!

happy chair dance.

also in last night news, we went on a halloween errand and smiled the entire time. in party city. that is a feat.

we were standing in a sea of crabbing kids and parents, and lillie and grae were just quietly picking out vampire teeth and bloody gauze and deciding that, yes, grae did need the hockey mask and, no, lillie did not need the false eyelashes. hers are long enough, grae determined. and lillie was pleased. and esmé held my hand the entire time.

our smiles carried us out to the parking lot, where we saw the. most. adorable. grandma. in. the. entire. universe. i seriously melted a little and made a wish on a foggy star that i'd turn out just like that.

mmmm, lill murmured wonderfully. she looks like iris apfel.

my girl.

for the past two days, i've seen my sister in every beautiful moment that's come my way. it's strange and it makes me cough and smile brighter than i should.

it's in the kiss that esmé gives to lillie's belly with the wish that she has a gweat day. it's how lillie stops. just stops. when she sees how soulfully esmé draws these days. it's in the middle of a brawl over shoelaces with lill out-of-the-blue telling grae take 'em. they're shoelaces. i'd rather have you.

pat always asks me what i want. i love that he's still curious. but wish lists always make me a little sad, don't they? i feel like, write down everything you've lost so far under the heading things i've lost so far. and then cross out that heading and write in its place, my wish list.

same list, yes?

i tell my girls all the time that i'd trade every damn thing in this house for one more christmas with my sister. they look around and see a lot of stuff. and understand, i think.

there. three reasons why it's a very good day already. see above. all of which could also be replaced with three very lovely girls.

same list.

two additional things that make me happy: she is back and she is where she is supposed to be. xoxo.

25 October 2011

you're your mom...

if you ask lillie a question like where did you get that? or what is that? or even what's up lill? she'll sweetly and devilishly answer your mom! with a delightful mike ditka-esque accent.

public school is such a charming breeding ground for sketchy linguistics.

last night, we were writing a paper for lillie - a group effort requiring frequent breaks to see who can leap on one foot the farthest or shred a piece of paper with one ninja hi-yah! - and trying to memorize all the words to this. she had a bit of leftover neon pink frosting on her tank from the giant cupcake cake we'd made after lacrosse, and esmé asked what's that?

and there comes the chandelier smile. your mom!

i'd had it. got all frowny and muttered that doesn't even look like me, lillie.

esmé is picking up every little thing her big sisters do and say. sort of.

this morning when i asked what she was eating for breakfast, she whirled around and tried to hide her forkful of cupcake cake, pointed to me and yelled you're mom!

yes. that's more like it.

20 October 2011

notes to self...

i do not personally subscribe to this theory.

i've always forever believed in kissing whenever you feel like kissing. thank god i was so homely in middle school and no one took me up on it.

lillie and grae came home the other day just crawling up our front steps, doubled over with laughter. MOM! they called, snorting with giggles. LISTEN TO THIS!

it took ages, but they finally spilled the stories of a girl who wrote her boyfriend a love letter that included the phrase "i'm gonna make ur life miserable." he broke up with her ten minutes later.

and another sweet young thing who wrote anonymously to a boy she likes, "hey, babe. you looked sexy last night from the bushes outside of your house."

ummm. i'm going to teach a class, i think. how to write love letters that don't make the recipients hate you. or call the police. something like this.

i told the girlies to never ever not ever write a note to someone they like {and this should only happen in college, by the way} without running it by me for creative edits. they have no idea the goldmine they hit with me as their mom. i can't do much, but i can write about love. they'll appreciate this someday, i bet.

also, don't get me started on college applications. can i write their essays?

18 October 2011

my sister just sent me...

straight back to a time when i wasn't online for one single second during the day. not one.

i sat next to these two little things and arranged dollhouse furniture, watched mulan at least ten million times, and made picket signs for their barbies. it was the only way i'd let them play with barbies...if they were conscious barbies.

we stayed in our pajamas all day until five minutes before the very moment uncle sugar walked through the door. and we gasped the minute we saw him.

and then this little smidge came along.

i'm sometimes afraid that i'm not as good of a mom anymore. like, i'm really no longer that mom-on-the-floor. i write a lot. a lot a lot. and if i'm not writing, i worry about writing and being a better writer for my clients. i'm over-scheduled and disorganized in the most organized way and i stink at bedtimes unless bedtimes are yelling contests. because then i would win. and i'm not sure i remember often enough to gasp when uncle sugar walks through the door.

i should gasp when that boy walks through the door. i should.

i say it all the time, but life gets so in the way of life, doesn't it?

thank you, jeje, for sending my babies back to me. xoxo

17 October 2011


there's too much to tell you, which always overwhelms me to the point that i don't tell you a single thing of import.

i just spent the morning reading mails from a new faraway friend who's been sending me pics of her faraway home which may be mine, soon. not the exact home, but probably the same architecture and batik and lush gardens. i like beginning the week with a healthy dose of wanderlust.

i bought these and these for the girlies, plus a set of six shades of brown in the most velvety-soft pencils i've ever felt...so that lillie could do a self-portrait accurately. they like to draw before bedtime, and i am all about a few quiet moments before bedtime. that is usually just prior to the moments when i am screaming brush your teeth! and shush it, lillie!

last night, lillie was making - what are they called? - an acrostic? where you write your name and then describe yourself with words beginning with all of the letters in your name? of course, she began with lovely. it's true. and then...well, then...

grae walked by and asked, "what's incedible?" {pronounced in-seed-able, fyi.}

lillie rolled her eyes and corrected with disdain, "incredible."

grae shook her head and suggested a dictionary. plus maybe an r. because as it stood, lill was incedible.

uncle sugar is learning a new language, and is just at the beginning stages of speaking. he has a little vocabulary app on his iPad, which pronounces the words in a woman's voice. i WISH WISH WISH i could let you hear a recording of his first few words. so high-pitched and adorable that i still crack up when i remember it. he has since ditched the lady voice and learned a much...manlier...way of speaking bahasa indonesian.

esmé, as you know by now, is pretty effusive. and she says things like "i very want to go there." and "i very like that girl." things like that.

the other day, pat corrected her speech, which he rarely does. fwee and teef were just fine for ages because we both kind of feel that language, among other developmental things, are organic. they'll come when they come. or, at least, one of us still feels that way.

but on this day, he edited her. "it's i really want to go there or i very much want to go there. not i very want to go there."

i looked at him like he was crazypants. "why are you correcting her?" i wondered.

and he kind of snapped back "because i currently speak like a three year old in bahasa indonesian. and it's driving me insane."

poor thing. he's not really used to being anything less than incedible.

happy monday, you little sweethearts. i feel like it's already started well. hope i didn't just jinx it for us. oh! one more thing that made me laugh really hard this weekend. whenever pat sees something i've bought, either for dinner or for the house, and i'm unusually excited about it, he nods like he's supremely interested and then asks "did you get it at a garage sale?" gets me every time with its unexpected {insert proper synonym for jackass} quality, doesn't it? all photos from my gimme bar.

12 October 2011


this broke my heart into a million...

and then i thought of at least three people for whom the reverse is true. haven't seen them in three years, but it seems like a day. and i do not believe that to be a compliment. whoops.

is pinterest as much fun as my gimme bar? it just seems so...crowded..over there. and every time someone new follows me on my fake pinterest account, i make an eep face and feel bad that i've never dipped a toe into those waters. sigh. i do swim upstream. and it's giving me a headache. do you love pinteresting? should i try it? tell me tell me, please.

11 October 2011

she's open for business...

i really, genuinely like this girl. she's smart, well-read, kind beyond belief, and her blog is one of the prettiest - while being the coolest - around.

years ago...YEARS!...i begged her to open a shoppe and sell me one of her monkey prints. they didn't exactly exist at all, but they were three monkeys hanging from a chandelier at the tippy top of her blog, and i wanted a massive copy for my girlies three.

{this was when esmé was going through her monkey stage. much less to do with her antics and way more to do with the shape of her mouth and the way she walked.}

these lucite stamps are my fave. i'm buying three. so my monkeys can be a little more civilized.

enjoy her shop. and buy something. you'll get it in a little wooden keepsake box and you'll gasp and say something like "oh, karey was right. she is cool." you probably won't say the karey part, but you will be pleased. promise. xoxo.

10 October 2011

i am missing you...

that is pretty much all true, and the only real content of this post. life is getting in the way of me and you.

the girlies and i pushed pause a few times this weekend and cuddled in front of some movies while uncle sugar opened up an italian restaurant in our kitchen. instead of insidious, we watched bill cunningham new york. they were dubious at best as we watched the first few seconds, but then? they fell in love.

his is a good story. i like how he's lived it.

and then a revisit with babies. old news, but worthwhile to the max. i love to see which babies and from what corner of the world are my girlies' faves. {hint: they are not fans of the san fran family!}

are you watching anything good? reading anything better? i am in need of some inspiration. xoxo and happy week.

04 October 2011


there are weeks when i just want to hang with my girlies and listen to their every story and tell them all of mine and run three miles a day and think harder about dinner far earlier than, say, six thirty and read lucky peach cover to cover and research indonesia like mad and make tennis dates and not write a single word.

this is one of those weeks.

little things are happening here and there and in between. esmé rearranged lillie and grae's bedroom last night like a shop. there's a jewelry display, a shoe section with uggs and chucks and vans and cleats, a clear mascara bar, bags and totes...it's pretty amazing.

of course, the girls have some edits. they're not pleased with their under-britches on display and organized by color of polka dots. minor change.

you know what's been on my mind? i asked them to name their all-time favorite places to live. only one of them answered here. i thought about that all night, and probably over-thought it as i usually do.

is it too simplistic to believe that where you are right now should be your favorite place? and is it sad if it isn't? you know how i worry...

there are also weeks when all i want to do is wear low cut dresses. those weeks are fun, too.