19 Dec

Herding Cats – An idiom denoting a futile attempt to control or organize a class of entities which are uncontrollable or chaotic

…like my life.

Just scroll down to see the latest post ↓

We had a power outage last night and Maura handled it as expected

19 Oct

The Puget Sound region has entered True Fall – where it suddenly goes grey and rainy, with a few good blustery storms thrown in. Leaves don’t fall gently to the ground here, they’re ripped off in 50 mph wind gusts one night.

It wasn’t too bad actually yesterday. A bit rainy, a bit blustery, actually a bit warmish out.

And then, five minutes after I started stew in the Instant Pot…



We blinked at each other. The lights blinked back on, only to blink back off. We blinked at each other again.

The lights stayed off.

It wasn’t quite dark out yet, so at first, we couldn’t tell if it was us or the neighborhood. The husband checked the fuse box. Nope, not us. I had, ironically, organized the candle cabinet (what, you don’t have a cabinet full of things to light up?) so grabbed a few. And Maura started mourning the loss of wifi on her tablet.


Oh yes.

Josh called the electric company to report the outage.

I tried to explain electricity and how it works to Maura. I also explained why she couldn’t have  a real candle, found her battery-operated lantern, distracted her for three minutes with the light up ghost, and went back to explaining how wifi works on electricity, and we had no power.

“No power????”

The teenage girl came home, her phone on 4% battery.

It was like the 1800’s in here folks.




I distracted people with ice cream cake leftovers – because, well, one should eat the ice cream first as it’ll melt in a power outage.

Maura dropped her slice on the new area rug.


I cleaned ice cream out of the new area rug by the flicker of battery powered candlelight.

The eldest, Collin, came home from work. We discussed flashlights and such. He went out back to his space.

“No power.” Mourned Maura.

“Nope, they’re working to fix it though.” I said.

“Maura, why don’t you play with your dolls?” Miriam the sister suggested.


“How about you read your books?” I suggested.

“No. Collin! Where Collin?”

“Collin’s out back in his room.”

“COLLIN!” Maura pulled out her cell phone. Punched in numbers. “Collin? No power.”

And I realized what she was doing – she was calling her brother to fix the power. Because he can fix the tv, and fix the internet, surely he can get it all working again. But since her cell phone is an old powerless one form 2009, the call didn’t go through.

Maura hurmphed. She sat on the sofa. She picked up the remote. The lights of the remote lit up as she pressed the buttons, trying to get stuff to turn on.

“The power isn’t working honey, you just have to wait.”

Waiting is not one of Maura’s skills. Instead, she pulled a coat out of the closet, and grabbed an umbrella, muttering something about Collin as she headed to the back door. A girl doesn’t have to be verbal to make her intentions known.

“Maura! No! You can’t go out in the rain to go get Collin. Collin can’t fix the power.” I said before telling her to hang the coat back up. This lead to her knocking three games out of the closet shelf, giving Miriam something to do while Maura mourned verbally the loss of power.

Finally Josh said “Maura, get your coat, let’s go out.”

Maura was happy to wave us goodbye and leave this powerless place of ours. Only to spend the outing asking Dad “Where Mom?”

You just can’t win sometimes.

I texted Josh to let him know when the power finally came back on (three hours after it went out) and Maura cheered when she saw the lights were back on. “LIGHTS! POWER! WOOHOOOOO! MOM! LOOK! POWER!”

And she went happily to bed. Because thank God, it was bedtime. I was exhausted from all the power outage



This is not a post about lunch boxes…

27 Sep

Maura has two lunch boxes in regular rotation, plus a spare one that’s an odd shape so not my favorite to use.

This morning, I could find neither good lunch box.
Now, we’re not ones to put things away – how silly would that be? And I remember seeing the one lunch box on the table, which means the other should have been in her backpack. But table lunch box was no longer there, and backpack lunchbox was invisible.
“Maura, where’s your lunch box?”
*radio silence*
Now, I’m used to her not responding to me. It’s sort of our thing. I ask a question, and then receive no response. Because communication is sketchy, and often given in interpretive dance (and not just by Maura – her sister *is* a theater teen.) 
I would love it if I asked Maura a question and got a response other than “yes” or “no”, which, frankly, she doesn’t often use correctly. For instance, you can say “How was school?” and she says “yes.” – we assume that means school was okay. Other times, you can say “Do you want ice cream?” and she’ll say “no.” even though she means yes. Just the other night, we were at a restaurant, and I asked if she wanted a particular food, one she likes, one she gets every time we’re there – she said “No.” She was intent on ordering a Sprite. She wanted the Sprite. She wasn’t understanding that she could get the Sprite and the food.
So no, questioning Maura isn’t always helpful.
Yet I continue to.
Why? Well, because even if she doesn’t speak, she can often find a way to answer me. And because I have faith that if we keep doing this, we may make progress.
So this morning, as I asked her again “Where is your lunch box?”, Maura suddenly responded.
“I don’t know!”
It came out a bit whiny and frustrated and teenagery.
I greeted it with joy.
“You don’t know where it is? That’s okay! Let’s look for it!”
So we never found either preferred lunchbox. And Maura’s idea of helping me look was to follow me around the house watching me look. But I finally admitted defeat and grabbed the spare lunch box. At that point, it didn’t matter. Any frustration over losing the lunch boxes was wiped out by Maura conversing with me.

Six hours after writing this post, I found both lunch boxes – one on the couch, one on the floor in the dining area. I’ve decided we have mischievous spirits who move stuff on me in the house. I think that’s a reasonable explanation. 

I think I’ve reached my capacity on kids movies

25 Sep

For some reason, Maura HAD to have a copy of “The Lion King” – a movie that, until now, I’ve never actually watched.

I mean, I’m sure my kids have watched it, I know my boys watched the spin-off show “Timon and Pumba”, Miriam’s choir did the full “Circle of Life” song last year – but somehow, I missed actually viewing the whole movie.

Thanks to Maura’s need to watch movies 3928 times in a row, I have now watched “The Lion King” – or as I’ve dubbed it, “Simba Doing Stupid Things”.

Really Simba, your father is James Earl Jones, you shouldn’t be this dumb. And really? You’re gonna follow Uncle Scar around? And watch him kill your father and slap your mother around, only to trust him enough to walk away? His name is Scar! He has a British accent! Come on already!

Again – I shouldn’t be left alone with kids movies. Especially ones where one of the main songs is “I Just Can’t Wait to be King” – a happy song about eagerly awaiting your father’s death so you can snatch up all the power. How very Shakespearean.

And then I discovered that Matthew Broderick was the voice of grown Simba.

Matthew Broderick.




My friends were all “How did you not know this?” and I was all “I DON’T KNOW!”

Seriously, I don’t know how I got through the past 23 years of this movie’s existence not knowing Matthew Broderick played Adultish Simba.

Proving that no matter what your age, there’s always something new to learn.

Like “Hakuna Matata” – sure, it means “no worries” but it also seemed to be interpreted as “Yeah, so your father just died and you ran away because once again, you listened to Uncle Scar and you’ve not thought once that your mother might think you’re dead??? You made your mother worry this whole time!”

Seriously, Disney, what’s with you having characters run off? Snow White…Ariel…Simba…Elsa…okay, Rapunzel took off, but she was literally imprisoned so I support her choice. Disney is just a bad series of “People making poor choices”.

Again, maybe I just need to stop watching them all seventeen times a week. Oversaturation is a bad thing.

I just feel bad for “The Lion King” – it starts off so gloriously…the choir, the scenery, the uplifting song and tiny lion cub, James Earl Jones. “Before sunrise, he’s your son.” – what’s not to love?

Well, besides 30% of the movie being Scar going on about how he’s going to kill everyone.

Yeah, I definitely need less cartoons in my life.



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