Tuesday, November 30, 2010

they all came down.

we walk anna to school.
not always we.
but always tim.

i really like when we walk anna to school.

i feel a little bit better all day when i've gone with them.

today i went with them.
all of the leaves are off the ginkgo tree on the way to anna's school.
and we got to walk her up to her classroom. saw her go in, happily.
we walked back home through fallen leaves and the chance of rain.

it was raining by the time i went back and picked her up.
and now it's all wet out and dark and someday soon
this will be snow.

no rush.
but i do like the snow. i like it all.

i like when i go with them to anna's school,
but i like when i stay home
just a little bit,
and i have a minute or two
to myself.

i like it all.


Monday, November 29, 2010


this is what keeps going through my head today, and i thought i should write it down:

let people surprise you.

it reminds me of the line in the philadelphia story, when tracy says "the time to make up your mind about people is never."

maybe we'll watch that again tonight.


Sunday, November 28, 2010


hi from sunday night.

i've got bread baking and the (second) best leftover turkey soup with rice i've ever had on the stove. (the first best was years ago, made by my then across-the-street-neighbor (hi, t.), with a little cream in it, as i remember. i still think about it every now and then.)

it's so dark out now, but we did get outside for a while today after a nice brunch with friends. i think brunch is underused as a get-together vehicle around here. i'm going to take their initiative and run with it.

it's so dark out now, and candles are lit and we are waiting for the girls to come home. it's been a few days with just anna, and as it's been a while since we've been a skeleton crew (so to speak) i'm a little anxious waiting for them.
don't get me wrong, i can't wait to see them, but leading up to them coming through the door is a period where i realize how calm and easy it is to be just us three, in some ways. in some ways, it's actually harder. or at least, a bit strange.
it's not a good or bad scenario. it just is.

it's so dark out now, and tim and i seem caught between feeling a little restless, feeling a lot exhausted, and gearing up to dive into something new. i can tell. after dinner we're either going to collapse in a heap, or start up some project from scratch.

that's just how it goes around here sometimes. and i'm not even sure which i'd prefer tonight. we'll see.

best wishes for the week ahead.


Saturday, November 27, 2010


we went for a late afternoon walk today.
it was almost dark;
darkening, at the least,
as we found our way back to the car.

now we're home and anna is climbing towards the bath,
and tim and i are anticipating a good meal, a movie maybe.

roasted potatoes, and red onions cooked in the pan with balsamic vinegar and thyme. steaks with lots and lots of black pepper on the grill.

it's cold out at last, but i'm not above sending tim out to the grill, and he's happy to oblige.

last night we watched winter's bone, and it was one of the most compelling movies we've seen in a while. i even stayed awake until the end.

we'll see, maybe we'll have some luck with a movie tonight. if not, we've some reading to do.

tomorrow now is shaping up: brunch with friends, another walk, and then the girls come home.

i loved our large, loud holiday meal.
but it's these quiet little nights at home i love the best.

more soon.

Friday, November 26, 2010


i do understand, and have had
those days after the holiday
that are a letdown.
where you feel as though
all of the anticipation and preparation
led up to not so much,
and then it is as quickly done
or quicker.
and so i have been sad
or disappointed
on those days after.

but this morning i woke up
glad for all of those leading-up days,
glad for the day we just had,
glad for having it behind us,
and glad for the days ahead.

it was a good feeling.
very good.

i think if i had just one wish for myself and my friends these next few weeks,
i would wish for contentment.

more soon.


Wednesday, November 24, 2010

yesterday anna and i went out looking for bittersweet.

we found some.
not much, and a little overripe.
but enough for our thanksgiving table, for our front door.

after our walk into the woods
we sat down at the end of the path,
on a bench up above the lake
that the path curves around.
and we wrote.
i had some words in my head from our walk through those woods.

anna wrote::

i am you
i am me
because i am loved.

and then she signed it: sophia rose simmons.

i wrote::

i feel so small and new in the woods
and not only
for the days i spent here
when i was young,
as i grew up among these very trees,
but because i look up.
up above me leaves and branches
as toys hanging over the cradle,
and for the first time
in the week
am filled with awe.
there are no miracles to be found
in making beds
in the grocery aisle.
but here in these woods
i look up
and there hangs waiting
my miracle.
all that's left then is to wonder.

and then i said it was time to go,
and anna said
oh but can we stay? it's so relaxing here.

i swear that is what she said.

so we stayed a little longer
and then we came home,
with a few branches of bittersweet.

not much.
but enough.

best wishes to all of you,
and thank you so very, very much
for all of the support and encouragement you give me.


Tuesday, November 23, 2010


just a few photos in b+w (uh...obviously...) from our trip (date?) to the new york art book fair a while back.

lots of holiday doings around here. more about that tomorrow.
haven't cooked a thing yet, but everything else is in place.
how about you? are you ready?

enjoy the evening.

Monday, November 22, 2010


and so these days have begun.
stretching out from here
to the end.
filled. filled up,
full houses and full schedules.

last night we began the holidays
with a first visit from just a part of my family.
as i was getting ready, fussing over little details,
i realized gently but certainly
that i love this.

and it is that which i am going to keep in mind
from here on in.
when i am stressed
or overscheduled,
trying to figure how to fill up these days
with all of the people and places that i love,
i will remember that i love this.

i love these days.

best wishes to you all.

Friday, November 19, 2010


friday happiness::

i'm just completely stumped today.
oh, i've plenty to be happy about,
but i'm sort of scatterbrained right now,
and have to go out and get some stuff done.
i've been wasting time all morning.

oh! i know one.
beaujolais nouveau is out, and it's super cheap this year.

i love how the huge ginkgo trees still have their yellow leaves on. the contrast with their black branches is stunning.

other than that, i'll have to get back to you.

happy friday, all!


Thursday, November 18, 2010

these are some people i love



so, we've got a lot of girls.
but what you may not know is that we have some boys, too.
three, to be exact.
and two big boys who can come and go as they please.
and as they please is a lot.

tonight the girls and those boys made us dinner.
they've done it before,
and they will do it again.
regularly, we hope.

it's all sorts of good.
they choose the menu.
they divvy up the jobs.
they fight and they laugh and they figure out all sorts of things that most adults don't know how to figure out.

and they feed us, and themselves, and their little brother and sister.

and i don't know if i can think of anything better for all of us,
than this.


ps:: these photos are not from dinner, but from breakfast, one week ago. and so it goes.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

today was one of those rare days where i wasn't home very much.
i drove around and did some errands, went to some appointments, bought a few groceries.
i noticed how in just the last day or two most of the trees have been stripped bare.
i watched a young woman jog along with her labrador at a pace far quicker than my car could make it down broadway.
i saw quite a few accidents, some of which had just happened; the police officer was getting out of his patrol car, flipping open a small notebook, hiking up his pants.
i noticed that a tree limb came down on one part of the aqueduct that we walk when we take anna to school: tomorrow we'll have to lift her stroller over it.
i saw a woman in an old jeep that we saw twice this past weekend. tim and she had waved and honked in recognition of one another's vintage trucks.
i noticed that one of my favorite houses has three stripes of varying shades of grey painted on the front; i have my opinion as to which one they should go with. i wonder if they'll choose the same one?
i saw many people in a big hurry, barely slowing at stop signs and gunning it to the next intersection, and i called home to make sure the girls had made it back from school. all of a sudden it seemed that maybe they shouldn't be walking through town after a certain hour.
i arrived home and they were all safe and sound. backpacks and bookbags and sweatshirts were everywhere. every.where.
a fort had been set up in the dining room, so tim was drawing at the table in the living room for a change, and anna was next to him, making her own cartoon.

now dinner is in the oven, and everyone is occupied elsewhere for a while. and i notice that even though i can't hear exactly what is being said, i can pick out each of their voices in other rooms, and am glad that everyone is home.

enjoy the evening.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010


on sunday tim made me leave the house for a walk. i resisted, really just wanting to stay home. we'd already taken a long hike with the girls on saturday, and my parents were coming for dinner later in the day.
but tim made the point that if we stayed home i'd be inside cooking or cleaning, and anna would be playing and he'd be out in the yard. if we got out, we'd all be together.

we drove south, parked the car at sunnyside, and walked north along the aqueduct into the lyndhurst estate. anna rode her scoot bike along the path, and when we got to lyndhurst she and tim spent some time shooting the hills. then we went further along and into the former greenhouse structure. she could ride to her heart's content in there, and tim wandered around the grounds a little more. i sat down and almost dozed off.

at this point, we were almost all the way home, but now had to turn ourselves around and head back south to the car.

we were gone for a few hours, and it felt as if we were miles and miles from home.
and we were together.

smart man, my husband.


Monday, November 15, 2010


some school-days scenes in black + white.

and i don't want to jinx anything,
but things seem to be getting easier around here.
the kids seem pretty content,
the days just sort of flow along.

i'm enjoying these days,
oh yes, i am.

but i can't help but think
that there's something
around the corner.


i can't get over how long and lovely this autumn has been.
does it make anyone else nervous about what winter has in store for us?

do you see a pattern in my thinking here?


enjoy monday, my friends.