Thursday, September 03, 2009

Much as I hate to admit it . . .

. . . fall is near. I can feel it. I'm starting to do my mad dash of cleaning and nesting. It's like spring fever, only I get it in the fall. Now despite the fact that it is 81 and humid outside, that unmistakable signal is going off, and like any beastie that tends toward hibernation, I'm starting to get ready. I guess this speaks well for my growing feeling of being one of the housed, but I'm not pushing my luck. Anyway. despite the fact that we haven't even had Indian summer yet, I've been cleaning and organizing and getting ready anyway.

Took Jumper One to the fancy car wash place yesterday after spending the day cleaning and organizing her. Vacuumed her out, and got the deluxe car wash. Did the dash and console with the "Armoral" stuff they recommend for the interior surfaces, and really cleaned her up nice. She hasn't looked this good since she was new. Which considering the money I've put into the rest of her, only makes sense. Next on my list is to finish cleaning out the back seats and wash the inside of the windows and she'll be really rocking. I may even finally spring for the seat covers I've had my eye on for a while. Soft, comfy, and black with bright embroidered butterflies. Since Jo's birthday was in July and I don't really consider four new tires to be a real birthday present, the pretty seat covers should do nicely. When I looked out the window this morning I noticed the rims were silver in color which surprised me. They've been so covered with road dirt that I'd forgotten what they looked like.

Speaking of birthdays, mine was awesome. It was honestly the best in five years. Why? Because folks noticed, cared, and even to my surprise, there was Pizza and Cake! Yes, real honest to goodness ice cream cake. Woot! My sister-in-law was amazed, I actually had two pieces. Then again, she says I eat like a bird. Which until she mentioned it, I hadn't really thought about, but it's true, I really don't eat that much. Which makes it so frustrating that I weigh what I do.

Anyway, my birthday was awesome if simple. To be honest, simple is good for me, great even, because it was much more real that way. Though my birthday this year had, for a while, the highest percentage of under 20 folks I've ever had for one of my birthdays. Word got out in my sister-in-law's neighborhood that there was ice cream cake to be had at her house and you just know what happened then! Honestly it was fun. The kids were all so amazed I was willing to share my birthday cake with them. I thought it was cute, and I'm still just a kid in so many ways it was fun.

Pizza one the other hand, it was just the four of us since my brother (understandably) was off doing something else. One of his friends from Colorado was in visiting for a few days and it was the first time they'd been in the same state in about eight years. Back when we were sharing a house I too knew his friend, so I spent the earlier part of the day with them before they went off to play on the river for four days and then the Labor Day fireworks show. For me, it was the first time in way more than a decade since I'd seen Mike, and it was really good to see him. Mike has known about my little journey since just shortly after I told my brother, so there was no big shock there. When I got down to the Marina the closest I got to a comment was a big hug and "Damn girl, you look awesome! I got old and you got younger and awesome looking, frankly it hardly seems fair." So you know, I'll take that.

So obviously I understood they weren't going to be around before I found out we were even having a party. While I'm good with a house full of kids for a party, my brother and his friends have shall we say, always had a different idea of what was a party. And wine, well that doesn't really count. So it was kinda Girl's night out plus my namesake. Which he's all boy, he's not yet reached the age where a room full of women is a bad thing. Plus he just adores one of the neighborhood girls who showed up when there was cake around. She on the other hand is just old enough to think he's evil and runs from him. If I had to guess, I'd say she's maybe all of five.

My namesake on the other hand is going to be two next month, and for a two year old he's already gigantic. He so get's that from my brother. He's mastered running around like he's on fire, playing rough, and the tricycle next door. I mean pedaling and steering. It's awesome to watch, but he's growing like a so-cal forest fire when the Santa Anna winds come calling. He's just starting to get a grasp on language, and of course words like NO! Next will be MINE! And trust me, he's already starting to show the signs of that. The terrible twos are starting, and he hasn't officially turned two yet, it should be fun.

The part I'm looking forward to is when he figures out his name and mine are almost the same. I imagine in fairly short order I'll be hearing Samantha a whole bunch more than Sam, just so as not to make things more confusing. It's already started happening, since when there have been times when Val and Sam are in the kitchen while I'm in the living room and my back is turned or something. I'm sure there's going to be great fun over the years as he grows up and makes the connection between our names. I'm looking forward to that, and the ensuing confusion over the fact that he has not one, not two, but THREE Aunt Sams. My sister-in-law has two other really close friends who are named Samantha as well, and they always say good things come in threes right.

My adopted (unofficially) daughter went out of her way to make me a card, and you know, that was really special for me. Best birthday card I've had to date, then again I'm biased. I feel terrible that I left it at my sister-in-law's house, but I'm confident she's holding onto it for me. When I get up there in the next day or so, it will come home with me and sit here on my desk where I can see it.

So anyway, all my babbling aside, I had an awesome birthday, one I'll long remember and treasure. It's a great distance from last year's which kind of quietly got lost, mainly because my brother forgets, and my sister-in-law didn't know.

It's also a great distance from the four before it, when my life was such a horrific mess that reminding me of the anniversary of my birth was the last thing I or anyone wanted to do. My life, was at that point marked in terms of one crisis to the next, being really profoundly homeless in spite of a place other than my car to sleep, and precious little I or anyone could do about it. So my life has improved dramatically since those days. And I hate to say that it involved getting far enough away from my sister-in-law (A different one - Ellie in Jersey) that I wasn't forever bailing her out of one crisis after another that she fabricated for both of us. That however is some back story that I'll get around to adding to "A Mile In Her Shoes" someday soon.

For now however, this year's was an awesome birthday, and I certainly wouldn't mind more of these.

Wednesday, September 02, 2009

Birthdays . . .

Mine was yesterday, and for the first time in years, it was really awesome! But I'll get back to that a bit later.

More important is that today is Lori's birthday and I think everyone coming here, should stop over there, and wish her a very happy birthday! We love you Lori!