June 25, 2012

The last time we had a dance party a neighbor was so pissed about the loud music and late hour that he trampled the garden beds in the backyard. I assumed dance parties were permanently on hold. But not long ago we received a knock on the door and the same neighbor happily informed us he was moving to Thailand and we were free to party on. And also, did we have some moving boxes he could use?
And so we got back on schedule. Three or four dance parties a year, one at the beginning of the summer (last Friday night), one for Sarah’s Bday in August, and a couple in the winter- Halloween or New Years or Reggae Xmas.
This. One. Was. Awesome. This was a proper dance party, meaning people were here to dance and that’s about it. The music was so fucking good (Thank you DJ JEN O, DJ KM FIZZY and DJ SNAKKS!) and that kept people from… getting too drunk or breaking stuff or sneaking into our rooms to make-out or doing drugs in the bathroom. There just wasn’t enough time between killer jams. While cleaning up the next day I kept finding whole, cracked beers, left in a fit of “I love this song” mad dash back to the dance floor. Because no amount of beer, or food, or sex or anything other vice, feels as good as dancing.
You have to dance to remember that.

Seth and Kenya are getting even radder. They now build houses. Or at least small cabins.
They are transforming my garage from a dank shed with a hole-in-the-ceiling and dead chicken feathers on the ground to a wood paneled studio with a gas stove and french doors. At the crack of two they arrive, snacks in hand, ipod blasting from Kenya’s pocket. My weekdays are suddenly much more fun now that I can take my lunch into the backyard and bother them.


June 15, 2012

Today is awesome. I woke at eight and ripped back the curtains. Sun! Now all the doors are open and the whole house smells like fresh laundry from the line.
Pure, full strength Vitamin D pumps through me, even as I sit in the kitchen shade. I have a grand sense of possibility, visions of travel, and an unquenchable hunger for fruit.

Cause Of It All…?

June 13, 2012

(Allison’s mom is also a painter!)

I think I’m PMSing. But I can’t be sure. I have an irregular cycle, one that did not begin until I was seventeen and one that continues to be absent most of the time. I am not the girl who had really bad cramps that kept her home from school with a bottle of Advil at her disposal. But I wanted to be! Just like I wanted to have divorced parents and go to Ala-teen meetings. I kept wondering why nobody in Health Class asked if it was cool to wear a tampon before you got your period, you know, just in case.
I was practically an adult when it finally came. And to make matters worse, my sister was… normal.
It was late summer and my mom and Nat were driving me home from camp. I was staring dreamily out the back window when my mom began to speak, the strained casualness of her tone catching my attention. Honey, …Natty got her period. I glanced at my sister, mute and humiliated in the front seat. Until now my little sister had readily adhered to the standard rules regarding family hierarchy: she was younger and therefore shorter and shyer and in love with me. Now, suddenly, without warning, she had jumped ahead while I was conveniently secluded in the woods! The betrayal! The injustice! The truth of the matter.
And now, twenty five years later, I am still waiting for that wonderful, terrible monthly occurrence. Oh sure, I get it now and then. But never consistently. And so my moods, wild and menacing, strike without drawing blood. I’m just a crabby asshole with nobody to blame. Instead of charting my cycle on the back page of my journal (one entry), I should note the days I am particularly rude. One guess which tally will win…

(my mom is an oil painter. she loves every side of me)

There are some people who only write in their journal when they’re feeling good. Because those are the moments they want to remember, later, flipping through. I, on the other hand, only journal when I’m feeling blue. Or angry. Or jealous. And those are the moments I revisit if I turn back the pages. And what I see is a woman spending a lot of effort on something or someone that does not warrant it.
But at least there is a something or someone. At least there is a subject, and therefore a plot. But today… there is just nothing. I feel (and look) like I have been crying all morning. I’m really crabby! And sensitive. And so easily wounded. So not easy to be around, even for me. But I can’t seem to shake this girl. This drippy company. It’s like I have an uninvited out of town visitor that assumes she is going everywhere I go- the cafe, the dog bone store, even to drop the fucking movie in the fucking drop box.
Today is a fine day. There is nothing wrong with this day. It looks just like yesterday and is full of genius. Full of joy.

And I am not.


June 5, 2012

Today is the day. I am hitching a ride to Seattle and picking up boxes filled with Spring 2012 styles. I will be shipping over the next couple of days!

This Moment, All Day

June 2, 2012

My sister is wise beyond her years. Her years being two less than mine.
When I call her, woes and worries in my bag, I expect her to take part of the load. She will understand and relate and agree… that this is not how it should go. I must know, by now, that that’s not what she’ll say. She will instead notice the tone of my voice, the victim-tinged self-righteousness, the misdirected time and energy. And by the time we are ready to get off the phone we will be talking about outlook, perspective, appreciation, trust. And joy. Finding joy, even in the smallest things, to keep your heart open and receptive to all the good coming your way.
I have been taking note of moments, little and inconsequential, but filled with everything there is to love about living. And so, in tribute to my sister, I would like to recognize this moment.
Morning: The house smells of sweetgrass. There is a Doc Martin tribute show on KBOO. I have a large mug of hot water waiting at my knees. My stomach is full of yogurt and peaches. The doors are open and silver light fills the room. I sit on the new couch.

Afternoon: The house smells of broccoli puree and baked yams. There is a Grateful Dead tribute show on KBOO. I am in work clothes, a trifecta of blue. The neighbor’s mower growls a nasally whine. I ate all the chocolate in the house and feel frustrated that there isn’t more to be found.

Broccoli Puree Recipe: (this is my comfort food. it may sound like an off combo but it isn’t)

Bring a large pot of water to boil with a bay leaf floating on the top.
Take a lot of broccoli (1 1/2 pds) and break/cut it into smallish pieces.
Cut up a bunch of green onions (literally a bunch).
Add all to boiling water and cook until they are not firm.
Strain but save a pint jar of the water.
Let veggies cool before putting them in the Cuisinart. Now put them in the Cuisinart.
Add five splash of olive oil, a sprinkle of nutmeg, salt, and lemon juice. If dry, add some of the saved water.
Blend til smooth.
Eat it. Can be nice with a dusting of Nutritional Yeast on top.

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