Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Happy Birthday, Margery


(This is extremely optional reading material. Proceed only if you’re bored and have a lot of time on your hands.)

This was the day Margery was launched:

Tuesday, May 25  (yes, I know it says Thursday, April 29…. just don’t expect me to be able to tell you why. Another Blogger Mystery.)

...I wake up early, and am able to sneak out into the living room before my little sleep-over pal gets up. (Katherine and Jay had a long meeting at their house the night before, so James stayed with me.) I have time to tinker with the messed up fonts and spaces in Margery’s “Page” section for a few minutes before he peeps around the door at me. We do our morning routine, and then I begin to worry because I haven’t heard from James’ early-bird mother. (Jay had left for Alabama in the wee hours, so Katherine was alone in the house next door.) I text her to see if she is up. Don’t hear back. Try a few more times. Call. Call again. No answer.

I get panicky that she’s fallen. James and I run to the main house in our pj’s, speaking politely to the mothers we pass on the sidewalk walking their children to school. (At least I had on a robe and slippers.)

Key mysteriously doesn’t work in the back door. Go to the front and knock. (Only have key to back door.) No answer. We go around to the bedroom window and knock loudly; so loudly that we knock the screen into the hydrangeas. Finally Mommy gets up and slowly makes her way to the door with her 4-footed cane. Thank God, she’s just been sleeping in.

The morning proceeds in predictable wildness. We make an interesting entourage moving back down the sidewalk to Mimi’s Munchkin Manor, all still in our pajamas. I’m trying to prevent James from darting into the street while keeping his mommy from falling face-first into the concrete.

I fix everyone breakfast while James tears the place apart, and then we slowly make our procession back to the main house. I do Katherine’s morning routine with her, cleaning out her eye, washing her face, etc. Then help mother and son with a bath and getting dressed.

When things are stable, I run back to my house for a quick shower, throw on some clothes, and clean up from breakfast. Then I sneak in a little bloggy session before it’s time to fix lunch. Go into HTML, whatever in the world that is, and delete lines of God-Knows-What. Just completely, blindly guessing. 

Kat calls. They’re ready for lunch. I run back and forth between houses several times, amassing ingredients. (One house has no peanut butter, the other no bread; one house no lettuce, the other no salad dressing.) We eat, throw food on the floor, clean up, play. Watch part of Shrek 3. I chase James around, pull him out from hiding underneath his bed several times, and finally get him down for his nap. Then I do it again after he climbs out. Disciplinary measure is taken. Finally, he cries and settles down, talking pitifully to Elmo and Cat in the Hat. (Probably about how mean Mimi is.)

Katherine is ensconced on the couch for some emails, so I run back over to the Manor to fire off some last-minute stupid questions to the Blog Fairy, return emails and phone calls, straighten the house, start a load of laundry. I hear back promptly from the BF.  So I tinker, tinker, tinker some more. Frantic tickering.

Kat calls. James is up and at it. I tell her I’ll be right over.

One last tinker. It’s still not perfect.

I hit publish.

Margery is born.


No going back now.


It’s Farmer’s Market Day. One of the advantages of living in the block next to the main commercial drag is that you can walk to everything. So our motley crew sets off on a big adventure.

James has awakened on the wrong side of the bed. Nothing suits him. He refuses to ride in Mommy’s lap in the wheelchair. I put a monkey on his back. We tell him it’s a really cool monkey backpack, but it’s actually a leash. I have on the dirty workout clothes from the day before. (No, of course I didn’t workout…either day.) Kat has on a huge floppy hat. Neither one of us have on a stitch of makeup. Never got around to brushing my hair. Please try to picture this troupe walking to town.

First, we stop by the bank. James has decided he doesn’t like the leash. He is screaming. A nice man holds the door for me, giving me a grave look. I push Katherine and pull James through the door. Guess how many stares we get.

By the time we get to the Market, James is acting possessed.

We bribe him with strawberries. He cheers up a bit. Food has that effect on our family.

We buy our fruit and try to leave. The way we got in to the closed-off street is now blocked by a big van. Huis clos. No exit. A nice, burly, bearded man sees our dilemma and offers to help. It involves him pushing Katherine out into the main street for a second, while I hold James. James evidently thinks the nice man is actually a serial killer trying to kidnap his mother.

Blood-curdling screams. Hysterics. Once the man leaves, things get better. James decides the monkey leash is cool, after all. I loop the end of the monkey's tail onto the wheelchair handle, and on we go.

We start back home, but decide we don’t have the energy to do supper. Katherine suggests a Mediterranean restaurant down the street. So we skip our way down, singing “We’re off to see the Wizard…”

The restaurant personnel are kind and gracious. The little beast is finally tamed with a combination of Middle-Eastern music, French fries, lemonade, and a salt shaker to play with. The jingly sound of the waitress’s belly-dancing apron helps as well.

After hobbling home, I try to get everyone to bed.

Monitor on. Baby tucked in. Momma tucked in.

Baby climbs out.

Disciplinary action.

Sit and read People.

He’s back out.

Another disciplinary action.

Read People for 10 minutes more.

All quiet on the front.

I tell Katherine I think it’s safe for me to leave. (I can watch monitor from my house.)

But the deadbolt won’t lock from the outside. Forgot the key wasn’t working that morning.

I try for 10 minutes. No luck. I can’t leave them in there with an unlocked door.

I give up, go home, put on my nightgown, get my contacts case. Quickly check the internet. Margery’s still up there. And I’ve gotten a comment from a loyal supporter. It’s official.

Start back to main house.

Text from Kat: He’s out again.

We decide he doesn’t do well with the change in routine. He doesn’t like Daddy being gone.

So I go back in, scoop up the little “DWD*” and put him in bed with his mommy. Then I get in with them.

We’re all asleep in minutes.


Happy Birthday, Margery.

It was a miraculous day.

***************

*"Devil Wears Diapers,"one of our many nicknames.

(This was written just in case anyone was under the delusion that I was tucked away at a cozy table in Starbucks, sipping a vanilla latte while effortlessly typing my lucid and organized thoughts.)

The point is: There’s never a perfect time to start something new. Sometimes you just have to take the plunge anyway.

Also, I have a fresh appreciation for my son-in-law. Thank God he was only gone for two days.

***************






9 comments:

Laurel said...

LOVE those pictures. The one of Katherine and James AKA DWD cuddling is precious.

I'm a bit hungry after reading about all the food. Yum. And very jealous that y'all are walking distance to the farmer's market.

Jackie said...

Your enchanting ability with descriptions makes me feel like I was right there, and I hope you will continue to share these amusing, heartfelt stories with us. It just shows how it takes each of you to make the puzzle pieces fit together daily.

linde said...

thank you for continuing to share your thoughts with us. i am continually prompted to pray "randomly" throughout the weeks.

ps i have started praying for katherine through my dear friend katie hall bentley shortly after this journey began.

Rebecca said...

Lord have mercy, Kim. I laughed out loud at that (I know it wasn't funny at the time). You have a novel in you somewhere. I realize that Margery's intent (at least my interpretation of the intent) is a cross between the divine and the secular, but this post's visualizations were priceless. The reasons for the scenes are never far from the surface (and those are NOT funny) but to get to the humor and to live through them with grace (yes, grace, dirty workout clothes and all) and to have us be there with you - well, you are gifted.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for being so real. I've been 'stalking' you from blog to blog. So glad I found Margery.
PS you don't need to work out, seems like you are getting a great work out just living life!
Kathy

Kim Arnold said...

THANK YOU ALL SO MUCH for these wonderfully sweet words of encouragement...

especially for a post I thought people would find long and boring! (And whiny?)

God uses even the random details, I guess.

It means a lot to know that you are with me in spirit. I really appreciate your taking the time to read and respond.


Rebecca, I am thrilled to reconnect after all these years. Send me your email!

Love,
Kim

p.s. Yes, there's a novel in there somewhere. I have often felt like my life is one. Maybe one day, a miracle will occur and I'll get it written down. It would take one. :)

Marielle said...

I love the new blog! So looking forwarding to reading it (and catching up on it - sorry it's been awhile). You are amazing, Kim!!

Peggy Dabbs said...

Kim, you make me feel as if I were
there! James is a child like my
granddaughter. She is now 6, and is
still a "handful!

Sharing the chaos in your life enables me to accept the chaos in mine a little better.

You are so much fun and real!

tricia said...

"Margery",
This blog post is exactly the reason you blog...and I read! I have twin girls 3 weeks older than James...and can totally relate to your description! In fact...we had to resort to crib tents to contain our monkeys!! Keep writing...and I'll keep reading!!