They think I show up for the food. Completely understandable. I am not known for my skills in the kitchen and #1 son is a better than average cook, but it’s actually the kitchen table that draws me.

I grew up at the kitchen table. It’s part of my history, part of who I am. Food, friends, work, play – it all happened at the kitchen table. My family was shaped at the kitchen table.

The boys all come together for supper. The phones are put to one side and they sit – not just to eat – but to laugh, to fight, to share stories about their day, to make observations on life.

I feel them move away from me as they grow older. Not unexpected – it’s the natural order of things I believe – but still, I miss the little guys who cuddled close and shared pretty much everything with their Grammy. The kitchen table is where I go to hold onto them just a little bit longer, to still be part of their lives. That’s why I show up.

And on the rare occasion there are leftovers, I get a package to take home for tomorrow’s lunch. Twice loved!

… if you were to be as silly as me and ponder the value of your kitchen table, would they be good thoughts?

Close the door for now … you can always open it again later

During Christmas, Little Bear spent a couple nights with me. When he came to my room and crawled in beside me, I didn’t question why. I am always happy for his company, always wonder if this will be the last time he needs me … so I cherish his presence. Sometimes we chat. That night it was late. We settled down quickly. He asked me to close the door.

I can’t sleep with the door closed.

Well, I can’t sleep with it open. If it’s closed, nothing can get in.

So I closed the door. Funny though, I like to sleep with the door open so I can see what’s coming.

Open door … closed door. Wonder what that says about us. How about you? Do you sleep with your door open? Or do you sleep with your door closed?

Random thoughts.

Mouse in the House

It’s almost impossible for me to sit and do nothing. I would be a poor candidate for yoga or meditation. That said, I probably need it more than most. How sweet it must be to have a quiet mind. Such is not my pleasure I fear; to still the rats in the attic, the hands have to keep busy.

To keep those hands well satisfied while I took a break from soaping, I’ve been doing a little crafting. Found this cute mouse pattern on Pinterest and so it began. Not that I am a fan of rodents; a mouse or a hamster would not be a welcome guest. I declared all out war on the last furry little creature who came to visit. A trip to the local hardware for sticky pads and rat traps ensured victory for the home team and the beast lies rotting somewhere in the field out back. Good riddance! The Pinterest characters, however, are cute and fun to have around.

One thing led to another – as it usually does with me – and I decided the mice needed a home. Found an old drawer, had Mr. J partition the building, and construction began. Yesterday I papered the upstairs bedroom and built a bed. Today I sewed curtains and bedding. Sent a couple pics to Jackie, my #1 consult. ”Cute. why are you making them?” No reason. ”What will you do with them?” Nothing. No plans. I just enjoy the doing.

My mother was a big reader. Every night at bedtime she sat at the head of the stairs between the two bedrooms – boys on the right – girls on the left – and she either sang to us or read to us. One more story, Mom. One more song. Sadly, I wasn’t gifted with her beautiful voice, but her love of books and a good story we all inherited. To nurture our interest, she bought quite a few ‘book sets’ – big books with lots of stories. I’ve seen them often in recent years at yard sales. No one wants them anymore. But we sure did. We read them all – several times over I suspect. Fairy tales, fables, bible stories, mythology, classics … so many great stories. In addition to these, she’d also purchased a big old set of encyclopedias, Encyclopedia Britannica, I believe. They were used not only as intended, but for so much more. Big thick brown books made great Barbie beds, perfect dollhouse walls, highways and runways. Creative play at its best. Making a mouse house from an old drawer, paper, cardboard, glue and scraps of fabric is not such a stretch. Twice loved. We shall see how it progresses before I lose interest.