Of oopsies and unmade decisions

Yesterday, between thunderstorms, the kids and I went outside. I knew it was not a good idea to put Julianna on the wet ground, but neither could I carry her for an hour, and I wanted to show Alex the buds starting to pop out. So I walked her over to the basketball hoop and left her to fend for herself for five minutes. Naturally, when I returned, she was sitting on the wet driveway, soaked through—but happy.


Alex took her for a long ride in his jeep. I couldn’t even keep up, he was running her down the sidewalk so fast, but she had a ball. When we finally got back to the house, I put Julianna on the floor of the garage and popped inside to use the restroom. By the time I headed back out, she was tapping on the door. I opened it and saw…


Black handprints…all…over…the…door.


Which, naturally, led me to look at the hands that made the prints. My reaction went something like this:




Cute little terrycloth jacket: Black.


Cute little pink and white capris: Black.


Adorable, munchy little hands: BLACK. (Not so munchy.)


I don’t know how she did it, unless she actually laid down in the tiny pile of cinders left by the truck tires.




Yesterday was also a day for unmade decisions. Hugely important decisions. Change-the-course-of-existence decisions…like buying a couch. : /


I’ve said before that my husband is a consummate financial planner. We like to joke that I grew up on a farm in the ‘80s, and Christian makes me look like a spendthrift. When Christian moved into an apartment in 1995, he purchased two couches, a coffee table, and two antique lamp tables from someone’s basement for $50. Almost thirteen years later, we’re still using the same furniture.


However, its days are numbered. The big couch—my alternate sleep site on white nights—has been steadily failing ever since Alex discovered the joys of cushion forts and couch jumping. Now he has Julianna on board, too. We put it off as long as we could, but one of the zippers is broken, and we can’t even close the cover over the cushion anymore.


So we’ve been couch shopping for four months. We’re very picky consumers, you see. We think if you’re going to spend the money, you’d darned well better spend it well. And because our basement, where the TV is “supposed” to go, instead hosts a piano, a flute studio, and all the kids’ toys, we’re shopping for a couch for our all-in-one living/entertaining/TV room. It has to look good AND feel good.


Last night we went out to Ashley furniture. Since it’s cheap, all we found were stock couches that look like every other couch ever made. Bo-ring. Alex was without nap, and starting to look drugged and act like a toddler; Christian was holding Julianna, who was of course perfectly happy because she was with Daddy. I was running (well, okay, waddling) from couch to couch, plopping down, struggling back to my feet, when suddenly I realized that my husband was simply standing there, frozen in place in the middle of the store, with a look on his face that would have curdled milk.


“What’s going on?” I said.




Clearly, we need a break from furniture shopping. As my sister-in-law would say, “Ah, the drama…” J


And then, of course, there’s the Name Game.


After the kids were in bed, I came back downstairs. Christian sauntered into the kitchen and sat down across from me at the table. “So,” he said, “have we decided on a girl’s name?”


Two hours later, we went to bed, still nameless on the girl’s side…and on the boy’s, we just threw our hands in the air and decided we’ve got to stick with what we’ve got. We’ve had a boy’s name ever since Julianna was born, you see, but one or the other of us keeps waffling. And the girl’s name? I’ve got one I adore, but he thinks it’s too close to our new niece’s name. He’s got one that I accepted three months ago and then decided was boring. “I think it’s time to ask for outside help,” he sighed.


I’m not sure that’s such a great idea, myself…we’re very independent about these sorts of things. What do you think, my faithful friends and readers? Should I start a poll? J J J


Two weeks, six days.


How dare you insinuate that I’m counting? J