Category Archives: lists

Fuck Pumpkin Spice.

Published / by violet / Leave a Comment

I am not super excited about the end of summer – I love the long days with sunshine – but since everyone else is delightedly shrieking about pumpkin spice, here’s a brief list of things that I am looking forward to with the eventual arrival of autumn (not yet, but eventually):

  • Hoodie weather – also known as “the end of me sweating constantly when outdoors”. 
  • Baking! I’ll be able to use the oven again!
  • Open windows, everywhere. Work! Home! Car!
  • Sleeping with the windows open! Fresh air is so good.
  • Flannel weather – where my husband wears his flannel shirts and I get to snug up to him.
  • Wearing running shoes and not having my feet sweat.
  • Did I mention that I’m really looking forward to the end of the constant sweating?
  • Hot tub season!
  • Candles.
  • Keeping chapstick in my car again without fearing it turning into a greasy puddle.
  • Not being dehydrated after being outdoors for 5 minutes (read: sweating).
  • Rockton World’s Fair time! Cows!!
  • At some point, my beloved husband will make his homemade, from scratch, bread stuffing.

Another List.

Published / by violet / 3 Comments on Another List.

It is unpopular to openly daydream about what sort of life you’ll live when your children move out, but that doesn’t stop me from indulging from time to time. Here, then, are a selection of things I anticipate enjoying:

More room. There are two bedrooms being occupied by children in my home – both of which can, and will, be someday repurposed. Perhaps a true guest room (instead of the combination guest room, sewing room, cat-litter-box room we currently have). Perhaps a home office. My beloved husband daydreams of a home gym of sorts.

Storing things in logical places.  One of the children steals things from around the house, destroys those things (or simply takes them outside of the house, never to be seen again). He wipes snot on things. He rifles through things. Someday, however, I will be able to store things in the upstairs bathroom (where the shower is) instead of hauling them up from my bedroom. Someday I will be able to put pretty things on display without worrying they’ll be ruined. Someday I will not be (reasonably) paranoid about my important things disappearing.

Buying and using things that are not purely utilitarian. Someday my beloved husband and I will have conversations about purchasing nice things that don’t end in, “Well, the kids will just wreck [new items] anyway. Might as well wait before we replace [existing shoddy thing].” I mean, I’ll still have the same husband, so I can’t get too crazy here.. but things will have a better chance of survival even if they’re pretty.

Eating whatever, whenever.  When we had no children, we ate random things at random times. Then we had to make sure to make actual ‘balanced meals’ for the children and serve these meals at designated times. This has begun to ease, somewhat, now that one child is often working late hours or sleeping over at a friend’s home – but there is still a need to purchase specific foods and make sure other foods have been clearly identified as “for children to eat as snacks” and “for children to take to school for lunch” and whatnot.

Conversations that are not whispered or in code. Anyone with children will know what I mean by that and it won’t need any elaboration.

Fewer people to work around. Did you want to shower now? Too bad, there is a person in there. Did you want to make yourself breakfast? Too bad, someone is in the middle of unloading the dishwasher and taking up the entire counter. This will not end, completely, but instead of three people to schedule around, it will be just one. Neat.

Less laundry, less dishes. Totally self-explanatory.

Spur of the moment adventures. This, to some extent, depends on our pet situation – we currently have 900 pets – but we’ll be able to create our schedule fully based on ourselves and each other. No worries about which kid has an appointment, who’s going where, who’s home for the day, who’s working. And no guilty feelings if we go do something fun without the kids.

Gratuitous nudity. ‘Nuff said.

Many of my friends have young children (and a few have infants) and I am exhausted thinking about that. It is kind of amazing how much better life is, already, now that the kids are getting older – one is out of the house altogether, one is incredibly independent about pretty much everything, and one is inching closer with each passing day. We worked hard to teach our kids life skills pretty early – in part because I was so overwhelmed by becoming an ‘instant parent’ to THREE kids all at once and in part because that’s one of the things we consider(ed) important.

I am not wistful for those early hard days – I remain intrigued by what my kids will do. One has been out of contact for a few years, now, since he moved out and made his way back to his biological mother. Another is figuring out his life path – what he wants to do when school is over, how he wants to pay his bills, all that good stuff. The other is figuring out how high school works which, in and of itself, makes for an interesting year.

I do not miss afternoons spent watching endless children’s shows (or listening to someone beg me to watch endless children’s shows). Sticker charts. Fights that ended in someone being sent to their room while the other screamed. Figuring out how to navigate the elementary school system (much, much harder than high school). Dealing with the precarious nature of small children’s friendships.  Trying to figure out how to put together a ‘balanced meal’ when I was mostly just wanting to eat a chocolate bar, myself.

It is far, far more interesting to see these human beings becoming.. their own people. Their own lives, their own secrets, their own skills. The goal of parenting, for me, is to see them leave the nest – gracefully, ideally.


Principles of Adult Behavio(u)r.

Published / by violet / Leave a Comment

John Perry Barlow created this list when he was 30 (in 1977) – I first read about them here. Some decent food for thought. Also, it would appear that I have some work to do…

  1. Be patient. No matter what.
  2. Don’t badmouth: Assign responsibility, not blame. Say nothing of another you wouldn’t say to him.
  3. Never assume the motives of others are, to them, less noble than yours are to you.
  4. Expand your sense of the possible.
  5. Don’t trouble yourself with matters you truly cannot change.
  6. Expect no more of anyone than you can deliver yourself.
  7. Tolerate ambiguity.
  8. Laugh at yourself frequently.
  9. Concern yourself with what is right rather than who is right.
  10. Never forget that, no matter how certain, you might be wrong.
  11. Give up blood sports.
  12. Remember that your life belongs to others as well. Don’t risk it frivolously.
  13. Never lie to anyone for any reason. (Lies of omission are sometimes exempt.)
  14. Learn the needs of those around you and respect them.
  15. Avoid the pursuit of happiness. Seek to define your mission and pursue that.
  16. Reduce your use of the first personal pronoun.
  17. Praise at least as often as you disparage.
  18. Admit your errors freely and soon.
  19. Become less suspicious of joy.
  20. Understand humility.
  21. Remember that love forgives everything.
  22. Foster dignity.
  23. Live memorably.
  24. Love yourself.
  25. Endure.

Lists Are Good.

Published / by violet / 3 Comments on Lists Are Good.
  1. I have a decision to make. My decision doesn’t guarantee the outcome, but it pushes towards a particular outcome – no matter what I choose, it will cause some big changes. There are pros and cons to both pushing forward and.. not.  How do you make a decision when both options have great benefits and drawbacks?
  2. I didn’t realize how worried I was about someone until I suddenly wasn’t anymore. It still surprises me when that happens. Like, shouldn’t I know what I feel while I’m feeling it? If you had asked me, I’d have said my worry was about a 4 out of 10.. but my relief actually hit more like a 7.
  3. There’s a HUGE thing happening at work shortly (next week) and I am pretty sure that I should be at least a little bit nervous about it – but I am SO excited. Hopefully (see #2 about feelings) I won’t move into vomiting-levels of nervousness when the time comes.
  4. I still have residual effects from the stupid cold I had a month (?) ago. WTF. The day this cough disappears and my voice sounds normal all day will be a remarkably good day.
  5. I haven’t spent anywhere near enough time reading lately – I keep trying and I keep falling asleep. On a happy note, I’m apparently getting adequate sleep lately.
  6. How long until we get some decent spring weather? I really just want to spend some time sitting on warm (dry) grass under a tree. (But not leaning against a tree, as Coffee reminded me, because now that we have a male dog I am vividly aware that trees are essentially just coated in urine. goddammit, dog.)