Tags: snapshots

in motion

oh (cold) snap

Jeremiah wanted to talk about astronomy before he went to sleep tonight.  As Pär described the Earth's rotation, they got into some discussion of the North Pole, and Pär mentioned that the polar ice cap was melting.  There was a startled pause.  Then:

Jeremiah: The polar cap is melting?

Pär: Yep.

Jeremiah: Did we make that happen?

Pär: Yep.

Jeremiah: You mean... we're idiots?  Humans are idiots?

Pär: ... Yes.
in motion

(no subject)

I've been LJ-averse lately, but the journaling urge is creeping up on me again.  To ease back into the swing of things, I'm just going to paste in a little email exchange between me and Pär from five minutes ago.  Jeremiah, who is enamored with archery, has been happily occupied for two days straight with his new toy: the Marshmallow Bow & Mallow.

> J is outside playing with [neighbor child] very nicely!  completely on his own without prompting, when [neighbor child] came over, jeremiah solemnly spoke up and informed him that his parents don't like it when kids just walk in and take food, so from now on if they want a snack they should ask his parents.


> also, [neighbor child] is using jeremiah's plastic dagger and j came in to choose a weapon.  he wavered between lightsaber and plastic bat for a moment, then left them both here, and went out saying, "I choose magic!"


> oh, now they're in da house again.  j came up and askd for more marshmallows.  i said yes.  he went downstairs and cried "VICTORY!"


in motion


The boy sat down to do his homework today, and with a little help from me, he figured out how to begin. 

"Off to a good start," we both said simultaneously.

He turned to me, eyes wide.  "Hey, we said the same thing just then!"

"Well, it is a good start."

"Great minds think alike!" he announced, clearly relishing the phrase.  "Great minds think alike."

"You like saying that, huh?"

"It's a good way," he pointed out, "to make yourself feel like a great mind."

in motion


Jeremiah is upstairs with his dad, who's about to show him a new computer game.  I'm across the hall in my little office room.

P: Hey Jeremiah, I left my cup of tea downstairs.  Will you go get it for me?

J: (in horrified tone of voice) No!

P: (bursts out laughing)

J: It's cold down there!  I'm not going.

P: You know, I'll play a lot better if I have my tea.

J: You get it.

K: (calling over) Child, fetch your father his tea.

J: (in robot voice) I. SHALL. NOT. FETCH. FATHER. HIS. TEA.

K: Oh, you're a robot now?


K: Do you know what robots are made for?

J: NO.

K: To serve humans.


K: We're reprogramming you!

P: (waves his hands at J's head, makes beeping noises) Reprogramming!


P: (waves and beeps some more)

in motion

narrator trouble

When I picked Jeremiah up at school today, he hopped into the back seat and began to carry on a two-part conversation.

J: Hello.
J: "Hello," he said.
J: Okay narrator, enough!
J: "That's enough," Jeremiah said.
J: Cut it out!
J: "Stop narrating!" Jeremiah said to the narrator.

K: Hmm.  Sounds like you're having Narrator Trouble.

J: Yes.  This narrator won't stop narrating my life!
J: "It's true," said the narrator.

K: Do you want the narrator to narrate you a more interesting life, or to butt out of your life?

J: Butt out of my life.

K: Butt out, narrator!

J: Whew!  He's gone.  From now on, I can be the narrator of my own story.

in motion


I've been introspective as hell but I haven't been posting about it.  Lots of thoughts to do with getting older, an awareness of change.  Been thinking lately about the ephemeral quality of my passions: there are so few that have stayed true over time.  Which is not to say that their temporary truth is any less real; what they meant to me, what I found in them, it all mattered.  At the time.  And each moment of impact leaves an impression on me that doesn't change.  It's I who change around it.   So many tiny bits of my heart have been given away, renewed, replaced.  Shedding the old and building anew is what we do.  The skin I wear today has never been touched by people who held me last month.  We are always starting over.  We just start over from a different place each time.  Further along.

Today it's been fifteen years since Pär and I ran off and got married on a whim.  We figured we'd make up the rest as we went along and keep doing what felt right, whatever life might bring.  They call it tying a knot but for me it's felt more like a slow entwining, continually making the decision to turn toward each other instead of away.  The shape of us changes as each of us changes.  There is no knot holding us together except for what we have formed out of ourselves.  We've grown around each other like trees sharing the light, leaning on one another, becoming ever more an us.  Roots entangled, deep down into the ground.  We have a past together, and a future.

sweden, early days.  we were -- what, twenty three?
unretouched photo; that swirling haze of color around us really was there.  always.

in motion

egg of mysteries

Jeremiah and I got home last night from a wonderful visit and J went straight into his bedtime bath.  He sat in the water for twenty minutes playing with a silver and blue Silly Putty egg that Arie had given him.  The silly putty itself was put aside for the duration of the bath, but it was really the least exciting part of the gift anyway, as I discovered when I went in to check on my kid.

"Behold," Jeremiah intoned, raising the object on high, "the Egg... Of Mysteries!"

J displays the Egg Of Mysteries before his frost-lit window

In a solemn, measured voice, he told this story:

"There was a question on the bottom of the egg.  The question changed all the time and was different for everyone.  Some questions were easy, like '24 x 8'.  Others were very difficult, like, 'What made the first stars?'

For ages, nobody wanted to look inside the Egg Of Mysteries because they were afraid that God would kill them if they did.  But then they discovered Astronomy.  And Astronomy let them look around the universe, and they saw no sign of God.  So they figured out that God did not exist.  And then they were no longer afraid, and they looked inside the Egg Of Mysteries."

At this point, Jeremiah opened the egg, and dipped both halves into the bath, scooping up water.

"And within the egg, they found... water.  And when you poured the water out of the egg--" he illustrated this in the tub, then looked up, eyes wide, and spoke with hushed awe.  "Answers appeared."

"So then did it become the Egg of Answers?" I asked.  

He treated my dopey question with the scorn it deserved.  "NO.  Because it didn't solve the mysteries, it just gave random answers.  Which was very mysterious."

in motion


Is it wrong to enjoy maddening our kid this much? Parenting is tough work, people. We must find our fun where we can.

We wake up on this chilly Sunday morning to discover that we're all out of Jeremiah's favorite cereal, and Pär agrees to run to the store and bring some home.

J: Just make sure to get Honey Bunches of Oats.

P: Got it. Honey Bunches of Goats.

J: No! Oats!

P: Oh, Oats. Okay. What if they only have Honey Bunches of Goats?

J: Only buy Honey Bunches of Oats! Not Honey Bunches of Goats!

P: Goats might be cute, and yummy. In little honeyed clusters?  Mmmm.

J: Only Oats!

P: Okay.

Five minutes later:

P: So I'm ready to go out now, to get your Honey Bunches of Goats.

J: No! Honey Bunches of Oats! (exasperated sigh) Do I have to write it down for you?

P: I think so.

J: Fine, you've driven me to do this.

He returns a minute later with a piece of paper and hands it to Pär.

J: There. Now if you get confused, read this and it will remind you what to do.

P: (reading paper) Honey Bunches of -- oh, I see you accidentally left off the "G". I'll just write that in.

J: NOOOOOOOOO!!!!  It's supposed to be Oats!

P: Really? You don't want Goats in your Honey Bunches?

J: No! Oats! Oats! Oats! "X" on Goats, "check" on Oats!

P: So X would be marking the one you want?

J: I -- wait -- no, X means no. Check means yes.

P: What if the goats eat the check?

J: Then write in another check next to "oats". Keep writing in more checks next to "oats".

P: What if the goats ate the oats? Then I could bring home the goats, and inside them, they would contain some really gross bunches of oats.


P: So you want Honey Bunches of Oats.

J: Yes. Remember to read the paper if you're confused.

P: Okay.

Jeremiah comes into the bedroom, leans on the bed, rolls his eyes to the ceiling.

J: I hope I've finally given him enough information.

K: I should think so.

J: They probably don't even make Honey Bunches of Goats.

K: You never know. And Daddy does get confused sometimes.

J: Yes, it's best to be sure.

We hear Pär call upstairs as he's opening the front door.

P: Okay, I'm off to get some Honey Bunches of Goats!


He goes pounding down the stairs to confront his father.

J: What are you going to get?

P: Honey Bunches of --


P: Oats.

J: Yes.  Honey Bunches of Goats.  Gah -- I MEAN OATS!  I MEAN OATS!

P: Oats, huh?  You sure that's what you want?

J: Yes, Oats! And only Oats!

P: Honey Bunches of Oats.


P: Okay. I'll be back soon, and we'll see what I bring home.

J: It had better be Honey Bunches of Oats!

Ten minutes later, Pär returns home with a bag of groceries.

P: (wearily)  I looked and looked, but I couldn't find any Honey Bunches of Goats. I was only able to find Honey Bunches of Oats.

J: I wanted Honey Bunches of Oats! You did the right thing.

P: Really? Oh, thank goodness.

We all sit down at the table. Pär starts pouring cereal.

P: Hey, do you know what oats are, Jeremiah?

J: What?

P: See, when goats eat food, they absorb the "g" and all that's left over is oats. This cereal is what comes out of the goat. See? Like so.  (He tips the cereal box over; bunches of oats cascade out into Jeremiah's bowl.)

Jeremiah takes a deep breath and shouts "BUH!" into Pär's face, at the top of his lungs. His skills at reprimand are well developed, if not always eloquent.

P: That's why it's so much cheaper than Honey Bunches of Goats.


Pär is pouring milk now.

P: Hey Jeremiah, do you know what this is?

K: (smacking the table with a fist) Too far.

P: Hee hee!

K: Too far!

J: BUH!!

P: Enjoy your bowl of goat poo!

J: If you say poo again, I will say BUH to you eighty times!

P: Oh no!

K: You are the Knight Who Says BUH.

Jeremiah is fishing a soggy, burnt-looking flake out of his cereal.

J: Ew. What's that?

P: Must be a goat.

J: I don't like goats in my cereal.  (Flicks the burnt piece onto his napkin.)

P: Good thing we got Honey Bunches of Oats instead, then.

Jeremiah nods and begins to eat, pausing only to remark, quietly and contentedly, "Buh."


in motion


As the air grows colder, I bring out my lovely plum chenille arm warmers, which keep me from freezing up while I type.  Thank you, Sock Dreams!

I showed them to Jeremiah tonight.  He reached out to touch my wrist, then gasped, spun around, and collapsed, crying, "I faint at the softness!"

Yep, I feel exactly the same way, every time I put them on.