Don’t blink, you’ll miss it

Every once in a while I have a moment where I’m engaged in something with Katie and I feel like someone hit the fast forward button on my DVR.  Just some little thing she says or does makes it seem like she leapfrogged, exponentially, in her development, and I how did I miss the steps between the ground floor and the penthouse?  A lot of times it’s something  she says – a turn of phrase or a new vocabulary word – that will make me stop and wonder:  where did THAT come from?

We just got back from a walk around the neighborhood – well, I walked; Katie was on her scooter.  Just yesterday she was out on the same scooter, right foot planted solidly on the cross bar and left foot never stopping:  pushpushpush.  She’d wobble a little but that left foot never joined its pair up on the scooter platform – it just did its constant pushpushpush with the sidewalk, up the street and back down again.

Today, suddenly, it’s pushpushpushGLIDE …. pushpushpushGLIDE.

Several years ago, when Katie was between one and two, we were at the dealership waiting on car service.  Since Katie had just gotten her own wheels, so to speak, being a new walker, I let her roam the showroom while we waited.  At every car, Katie had to stop, get in the drivers seat, and pretend to drive.  She’d do that for a few minutes, then I’d say, “Time to go, Katie”, and she’d hop out, little legs propelling her onto the next car.

We were sitting in a convertible when a man with his teenaged daughter stopped.  He looked at his own daughter, and he looked at Katie, finally locking eyes with me.

“Don’t blink,” he said.  “You’ll miss it.”


My backseat … where goldfish go to die

As much as I’d like to take credit for the title, I can’t – saw it on a blog elsewhere.  But oh how it sums up the state of my car.

We bought the MDX when Katie was just two or three months old.  The key criteria in purchasing an SUV in those days was ensuring the big honking travel stroller system would fit into the back end, leaving room for other things (groceries are sorta important, some days).  In hindsight, we should have realized any stroller THAT FREAKING BIG was just asking for trouble – trying to manhandle that monster every time we went to the mall  ended up being an exercise in futility and frustration (it folds in a SNAP they said … never mind that it weighed three times as much as Katie).

I actually spent time this afternoon vacuuming my own car.  All in all it wasn’t in horrible shape, but there were dried out raisins (I know, how is a raisin ever NOT “dried out”), broken crayons, crumbs galore, and yes, sad little remnants of cheddar cheese goldfish, rotting away in the floor mats.  Going through this exercise made me think of my own parents, who kept their cars spotless – I remember many a Saturday afternoon my dad would wash and wax the Nova (yes, we were that cool).  I’m sure that every time we pick my parents up at the airport, and my dad’s loafers grind yet more goldfish into the floor mats and my mom moves the broken, paperless crayons out of the seat so she doesn’t end up with a rainbowed backside, they wonder where they failed me.

But all of that grime and gunk comes from memories.  Countless trips to Colorado, Nebraska, and Austin – to see family, friends, and football (not necessarily in that order).  Katie snoozing in her carseat, watching movies, playing on the iPad.   And yes, Katie eating and drinking, contributing to the detritus on the floor boards.  We changed a more than a few diapers in that car and, famously, Katie once puked from Wichita to the Nebraska-Kansas state line.

The MDX has ferried groceries, mulch, and softball equipment as part of its household chores.  It also shuttled a good amount of our belongings as we moved to an apartment and then to our current house.  It put on a lot of miles as it ran around town, took us on our adventures, and shuttled me back and forth to work  The MDX’s days as the Harris family car are about over; she’s got 130K miles and every time I go in for an oil change, there is ALWAYS something else that requires attention (and, seemingly, at least another $250).

But I’ll miss that car when it’s gone, dead goldfish and all.


And this child will one day choose my nursing home

A while back, I bought a book of games for Katie – tic-tac-toe, hangman, stuff like that.  Something other than an iPad or phone to keep her occupied while at dinner, and something that actually encourages some interaction with us (why yes, I am spraining myself patting myself on the back with that one).

It also includes ‘fortune tellers’, which Katie has long made, but always on her own and never with anything in the middle.  Which I guess means you get to make your own future … very wise, very wise …

However, the fortune tellers in this little book are mostly already completed with the four main corners being “Lucky”, “Cursed”, “Charmed” and “Doomed”.  For whatever reason the creators of this little doohickey decided to have children fill in the blanks under DOOMED and CURSED.  Here is what my lovely, thoughtful child penned:


  1. You will get hurt very whare
  2. You will die today


  1. You will get punched in the face
  2. You will get hit in the privets with a bowling ball

We’ll be sticking with golf and skiing, thanks.

Aaaaannnddd … she’s off

So daunting, staring at a screen, coming up with your first official “blog”.  Do I be funny?  Inspiring?  Sarcastic?  (Oh wait, that last one will just come organically to all posts.)


What inspires me to write?  I can’t say what one thing makes me sit down and start typing.  Periodically I just have ideas rattling around in my head that are clamoring to get out.  So, the blog gives me a vehicle to do just that – and if others read ’em and enjoy ’em, great, and if not, at least I’ve silenced the voice in my head that’s nagging me to write (the voice that constantly reminds me about the M&Ms in the pantry NEVER shuts up.  EVER.  Not even when fed.)

I do enjoy reading other blogs – some quite popular (Mommy Shorts, Snarky in the Suburbs, Scary Mommy are faves) and some from friends (OnHavingOvaries – yes, you, Alison; and Sievers Stories from Tracy, one of Katie’s teachers).   I don’t know what it is about reading those snippets out of another woman’s life – maybe just the commonality and the amazing beauty of it all – the giggles, the snuggles, the late nights, the worry, the puke, the heartache – all of it.  Motherhood is a sisterhood, cliche but true.

I do have to say a big fat THANK YOU to my dear spouse, Skippy (he’s made me promise not to call him “hubs”, so here I’ve done it once and I’m done).  He bought me a laptop for Christmas as encouragement to write.  He’s  also official tech support – while WordPress has some pretty exhaustive templates and tools, he’s figured out the whole hosting thing, he’s working the best way for y’all to log comments, and he’s messing around with the different tools and stuff here in WP – all of the junk that would drive me batty in about two minutes and have me cursing at my screen.   He started the framework and picked out the initial picture on the front page, and it was Skip who put “and crap about Skippy” in the banner.  I think that makes him fair game for future blogs, no?   Also, since he’s my tech support, if you have problems with the site you need to talk to Skippy, not me.

And thanks to Heather for suggesting “Jen’s Pen” and my friends who encouraged me … I just hope I don’t disappoint y’all!

Not sure how often I’ll be on here … whenever I need to appease the voices in my head, I guess!