Monday, May 27, 2013

my new master plan

It is an often discussed theory around here.

Permanent road-tripping.

Maybe it is just because I am Percocet-tripping and watching way too many reality TV shows this week, but I find myself seriously considering this option more and more. I think I would love living in an RV. 

Rico says I would love it until we parked somewhere and it became a "trailer home".  He's partly right. First of all - no parking in Oklahoma, Kansas or Texas. Second, the whole goal is to keep moving, so parking holds little appeal to me - unless we park in Savannah, Georgia or Asheville, North Carolina, then I'd be cool for a few weeks.

Regardless, I know there would be a few downsides, but the idea of scaling down, ditching drama, and being able to go wherever we want totally trips my trigger - here's why:

1) No more watching Rico make little X's on the calendar of "days that are actually pleasant in MN". (There are more than he thinks - it's all in the attitude)
2) No more daily questions from Yoda, "What we gonna do today?  I wanna go some places!"  We'd be going places all of the time, she'd be begging to stop.
3) No more school!  Oh Hallelujah! No more SCHOOL! Don't get me wrong - we've had some great experiences, but,the constant juggling and scheduling and having to learn exactly how much money was in the bank that Jesse James attempted to rob could end tomorrow and I would be thrilled! RV life would mean more time to help our kids become who they are meant to become - more chances to explore things they would never get to see in school.
4) Never ending adventures!
5) Being together with my family all of the time.
6)Five plates to wash - and only five plates.
7) Family on all four corners on both coasts - Thanksgiving somewhere new each year!

And the cons:
1) Snakes - I am sure there would be snakes somewhere.

Thursday, May 16, 2013


If I were the bragging type, I would probably take this opportunity to mention that Punk was just awarded the Presidential Academic Excellence award for his stellar work in middle school.  I might also mention that he was awarded the most creative journalist award for his work on the news team, and I would probably also say that he KILLED it when the honor choir got up to sing and dance to Forget You at the 8th grade awards night.  If I were the bragging type, I'd say that, but I'm not, so . . . .

Wednesday, May 15, 2013


It feels like I am slightly crazy.

I do know that my dad is gone. I know I will never hear his voice, feel his hugs, see him laughing with my kids, but I don't believe it.

I don't mean this in some poetic, obtuse sense, but very literally. Most of the time, when I think of my dad, when I see his picture, I think he is still here. I think I will just call him, that I will go to the VA, and if I just look hard enough, if I can just figure out where the party is, that he'll be there. It takes me several minutes, not just to realize, but to convince myself that he's not here.

It is only now. Only when the day is over, the lights are out, and the words spill from my fingertips instead of my mouth. Only now do I really know he is gone.

I know it, because my face is full of tears and the only place they could come from is the empty space where he used to live.

Though I suppose, that if I can fall asleep, I will wake up and be crazy all over again. Crazy is easier than empty.

Saturday, May 11, 2013


Our first spring showcase has come and gone.  As my partner likes to remind me whenever things are tough, "If we start with good intentions - and we always do, then we're following our mission and things will work out fine."

She's right - she usually is about things like this, which is one of the reasons I love having her around.  I should listen to her more often and worry less.

It was a lovely night.  Lots of excited kids. A group of teenage guys singing and dancing. Kooka performed 11 times. The singing was great, the dancing was fun - especially Yoda's class.

Especially Yoda.

True to form - she was all about the laughter.  Oh she started out with the rest of the class.  She even finished the first 24 counts with the rest of the class.  But when she realized that lifting her dress over her head and making silly faces got much more of a reaction, well - you can guess how that went down.

I don't have many pictures because I was so busy - but here are a few:
Yoda and Kooka with a pre-show hug.

Punk and the guys warming up

Tuesday, May 7, 2013


What most kid do with sidewalk chalk.

What Punk does with sidewalk chalk.

Sunday, May 5, 2013

life goes on

I suppose it has to, doesn't it?

Yoda says, "I am sad Pa died, but Pa tells me to be happy.  Pa wants mama to be happy too."

So I am . . . . not always, but I keep trying.

I still don't really believe he is gone.  There were too many close calls, too many times the doctor said, "this is it," and it wasn't.  Part of me still believes he is sitting in his apartment mixing contraband guacamole. Part of me thinks the doctors will call and say, "Holy crap, he even pulled through this." Part of me really thinks he will call me up and we will laugh at how he scared the bejeezus out of all of us.

I know better, because he is sitting in a box on my mantle. He's wearing his cowboy hat, waiting for his stone to be engraved, so we can finish this up.

Today we drove to Lake Pepin. We ate burgers at the Pickle Factory, threw rocks into what Yoda calls the "Might-eee Miffissippi," forced Rico to visit the Laura Ingalls house and stopped to visit Gram.

This week we will celebrate our spring showcase.  All three kids will be performing (one more than others). It will be a good week.

It has to be.

We've had enough that aren't and life goes on.

turns out, junior high was the real world

Lots of advice out there. Maybe I should have checked this out before I wrote my own list.

27 Bits of wisdom.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

just another day in the 5th grade

Each year, at  Kooka's uber-cool school they celebrate May Day.  Everyone dresses up (this year's theme, Alice in Wonderland), and the fifth graders dance around the MayPole while the fourth graders play recorders.  It's a very sweet rite of passage to see these little ten year-olds (who will be jaded by middle school in less than a year's time), dancing together, flowers in their hair, celebrating spring.

The whole event is followed by a parade around town, a picnic, and apparently a hardcore came of "bu!!$#!t" - which is what they told me they were playing when I walked into their classroom.