There's been a lot going on and a lot of not much going on Chez Kitchen the last few weeks. I'm spending less time on the social network world (less? how is it possible to do less?) because it's a time suck. But that time was sucked up by Words with Friends — I play with two people, my mother, and Bird's mama. Really. Nine games on average going simultaneously. Houston, we have a problem.
Mister started his new job at etsy and WOW are we so happy he's there. He's happy, challenged, interested, surrounded by smart and creative people. His hours are longer, and we are suddenly in a new kind of papa-under-water time. When we had Wesabe, it was his company in his hands so lots of stress and he only had a week off when Bama arrived. With Daylife, more stress, but shorter days with longer nights, and a week off when Rabbit arrived. Now, he's out the door during breakfast and home during books, sometimes bath, always hungry and looking for five minutes of solitude which he can't have just yet.
We're adjusting. I can't say I handle it all as gracefully as I'd like, but days are long for everyone.
Our friend Megnut, who's a blogger and a writer and a mama and a lot of other things was here last weekend with her daughter for dinner (son and papa were hitting the slopes). She said that she was wondering what to do with her afternoon because she didn't want to be on the internet and she didn't want to do chores. That's me everyday the last couple of weeks. I want to knit and read and drink a hot cup of tea from beginning to end in a room that isn't covered with blocks and not feel guilty about dishes in the sink.
I am somewhere in the middle.
I'm a clutterer. There, I said it. I can't have surfaces without photos and tchotchke on them, though I aspire to that aesthetic. I can't abide dirty. Clutter and dirty are different things, so while I can (sort of) handle six or seven winter scarves dumped on the stroller because I don't know where to put them, I can't handle the pile up of dishes in the kitchen. I admire, sort of, the mamas who do, who let the dishes wait so they can do projects with their children, make mounds of fresh pesto from their homegrown, hand-selected basil sewn with their unschooled children in the spring.
Or, I'm lying. It's a kitchen, clean that shit up.
Anyway, we are in the midst of terrible nap schedules with Rabbit sleeping two and a half hours in the morning AND afternoon (at least) if we let him. Poor guy doesn't always get such a good morning nap because Bama's drop-off and pick-up schedule conflicts with him napping in bed. I could take the 1950's route and just "run an errand" because "what could possibly go wrong?" I stay up too late so I often nod off with Bama when she lies down for her rest. (She refuses to call her afternoon nap a nap. It's a rest. Don't try to make it something nappish, she'll blow.)
We are settling in to Manhattan for the unknown long haul which means I am, finally, missing home in a new and deeper way. It's not lonely missing like it was the first fall we were here and knew no one and Bama played alone at every playground we went to, but it's the missing something you're not getting back to anytime soon and will not be the same when you do. The Captain is six weeks younger than Rabbit and we won't get to have them grow up together which had seemed a pretty great idea when Aunty Cake and I were pregnant at the same time. I miss Fairyland and the fog and pizza. (New York, your pizza is terrible. Accept this and move on.) I miss the beach and the ocean and the bridges. Which is bizarre since I'm on an island surround by water and touching the ocean and linked to the mainland by bridges. I miss having a car at my fingertips, which I resented at the time, but it can be a real pain in the ass to schlep one or especially two kids around New York.
If I sound glum, I'm not. We are in flux. Because on the other hand, I'm in a book club, no, two! Mister takes Go lessons once a week with an honest-to-golly Go master. I've got friends I knit with and a knitting group I enjoy and I play D&D once a week and I've been invited to a cook book club. And, yet, I cast about during the day for a solution, a plan, a system that allows my children to be nurtured, get some fresh air (poor Rabbit), learn, grow, all those things that are part of their job.
I avoid many of the mommy-blogs for exactly this. I am not one of those people who are in awe of the woman who can homeschool, sew, knit, blog, make money, dress stylishly, and have it all. I resent the hell out of those, mmmm jealous?, who churn out post after post of sunshine. Who cleans your kitchen? I’ve swept chunks of banana and crusty waffle out from under the table for the third time today, what? I should leave it there? This last week I checked in with Dooce, whose blog I also do not follow regularly, but enough to know she’s gone paleo, was in SF wearing a sparkly dress, and is also having challenges with her daily life. A two-year-old steeped in two-ness predlicitions, stuff to shuttle to and fro, nothing that on it's own is the end of the world, but tossed together like dominos in a sack, suck. I don’t revel in the agony of others, but I appreciate, holy hell do I, that someone says, wow, I’m knee deep in shitty, y’all.
PS: Meg's also kicked off a personal quest to not acquire anything new for herself, but to make do with what she's got. It's tough, because we are in a consumer-driven society, and we live in NYC, which is full of preening, hot-boot wearing women with Brazilian blow-outs (I hadn't heard the term until we moved here and had to check it wasn't a) something about sex or b) a wax job). We're on our own makeit.do simply because we've been budgeting for a while. Lots of consignment, lots of reselling. It changes how you look at objects, and in SoHo, we're surrounded by objects, but you are forced to really think about what you need vs. what you want. Wanting something is not bad, per se, but if all you are is want want want, watch out.
Next on my agenda: the new york scene.