Monday, June 27, 2011

Make It Work! (With Apologies to Tim Gunn)

So we've been catching up on seasons (whole seasons!) of Project Runway chez nous. Daughter has been pleading to learn how to sew. While waiting for the next disc to arrive courtesy of Netflix, and while the menfolk of casa LKL are away at scout camp (hey, I did the last two years), Daughter and I found ourselves in the car headed home from my office last night (had to pick up grading).

She asked where New York was, and whether the shop called Mood (fabric shop, for those of you non-Project Runway types) really exists, and could we go there asap? I pointed out that there might be lots of Moods because I haven't googled them yet, but that most towns had fabric shops. Why? Because in every town someone sews. Where is the shop in our town? Well, I stammer, it's Walmart. Can we go there right now? Errr... okay, why not?

Daughter has been to Walmart probably every fourth day of her life thus far. But she never knew they had fabric there! Half way up the aisle toward the back of the store, she spotted The Wall and began to run. She exclaimed over bolts of cloth, and picked out several, discussing whether the color palette would work. I need two yards of this! She yelled, probably thinking someone from Mood would cut it for her. We got some good natured fellow who sheepishly admitted that he didn't work the cloth desk usually and that we could come back during regular hours for the sewing person (it's a 24-hour Walmart, so I don't know when regular hours are), but who managed to cut with aplomb and sharp scissors. Wow, said Daughter.

I then bought a sewing machine. And thread. And a pattern. I came home, and the two of us watched The Instructional DVD. (Have I mentioned we were already well past "regular hours" even for Walmart?) And this morning, while Daughter sleeps, exhausted by Project Runway hours (and somewhere, an hour away, Hubby and Son have already attended a flag raising, swum, eaten breakfast and been bitten by mosquitoes) I have Set Up the Machine, according to the Operation Manual. I have wound a bobbin! And threaded the machine! And sewed several types of stitches! I will, Tim. I will make it work!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Back to the Future

I arrived home from work and was met at the door by Daughter, wrapped in a blanket and looking Mystical. Brother is dead, she said. Follow me.

We went into her room, which was very dark, and she closed the door. She went to a spot in the corner of the room and turned on some blinking red and blue light thing (actually, I had never seen it before) and we sat on her bed for a few minutes. We're traveling into the future, she said. Two hundred years. Aaaaand...we're there.

She got up and turned off the light, and led me into her brother's room. In his bed under the blankets was a mounded shape, and on his pillow a skull with glasses on. (I would have been more alarmed by the skull except he bought it at the Globe Theater in London a couple of years back. Alas, poor Yorrick. The glasses were a surprisingly moving touch, though.) He's dead in the future! Daughter informs me.

We reverse the process, blinking lights and all. When we return to Son's room, he pops out of the closet and asks why it took us so long to find him.

While the whole thing was endearing, it was also triste. I don't like being met at the door by one child telling me the other is dead. She was wrapped in a blanket (it was noon, mind you) and Hubby looked like he had been crying. Turns out, he had not been awake for long (must be nice, right?). But there was an awful instant where I thought she must actually be telling the truth. Compared to that, Yorrick was a blast.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

The Home Edition

Among other things, said in hindsight: I should have used a brick. Not: I should have used a locksmith...

But it began this way. We were geared up, in swimsuits, for our first trip to the city aquatic center for family swim. My keys were the only ones in the key bowl, and hubby was out by the car. In my defence, it was a logical assumption to make that he had his keys... But no, he was just applying sunscreen.

I was also distracted, telling Son that it didn't matter if the kiosk was closed when we got there, because we were going to swim, not buy candy. I was in full diatribe about how he really should focus on the bigger picture when hubby asked me if I had the keys.

So, all four of us are locked out. We have swimsuits, towels, an open car, and a bottle of sunscreen. And a chalk box, on the front porch. (Lurking out of sight is, of course, a brick.) It's like Apollo 13, but the weather is nicer and we can breathe the air. We check: no keys hidden anywhere. No open doors.

The kids suggest things like: We could walk to the pool! And: We could sleep in the car! We instead sit on the front steps and ponder the options. A locksmith? Hubby muses. Nope, he says. Too expensive. So, he decides to break the wee front window on the door to unlock it. What about the cost and time of replacing glass? I ask. No sweat, apparently.

I wasn't looking, and I assumed he was using the bottle of sunscreen (contents under pressure--that would have been my mistake) but it was the chalk box. A plastic thing, that spread the mass of impact and probably absorbed most of it too. On the second whack, it went through, and so did his hand. There was glass twenty feet inside the house, and five feet outside. Blood lavishly dripping. So, the kids missed the aquatic center. Hubby missed his tendon (barely) and had eight centimeters of stitches in four spots. And now doesn't have to swim for a couple of weeks.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

All She Wants for Christmas

Daughter lost her second top tooth this week, assisted by an x-box kinnect "table tennis" swat to the mouth, self-inflicted. The tooth that still eight good weeks in it came unhinged, and came out two days later.

Daughter brought me the tooth, with the warning: Be really careful! I was eating a snack, so it has gluten on it!

Apparently, that tooth was doing its job, right up to the last.

But there's a trend in our house, begun when Son lost a tooth and pondered that the tooth fairy must have all kinds of teeth available. He requested a shark tooth from her and she produced. Other teeth that have been requested include: whale, horse, unicorn, gods, and other mythical animals. The tooth fairy has reasonably stated that mythical animals rarely lose their teeth. Teeth she has left instead include: badger, rabbit, cat, horse, cow, coyote. The tooth fairy has a supplier who lives on a farm and who thankfully bleaches most of them before sending them along to the TF.

(Have you seen cow and horse teeth, outside of a head? They are grisly, and huge.)

On receiving rabbit teeth, Daughter announced: I know the tooth fairy is real. Because she comes in the night and leaves me things I've never seen before.

Friday, June 3, 2011

Levity is Easy, by Contrast

Grandma C took Son to a Buddhist meditation the other night. Son liked the monk, in particular. Monk told Boy: you don't have to meditate, but if you see any of us floating up off our mats, do tell us! Son did a walking meditation demonstration for everyone. Son returned to Grandma C's and located a buddha statue, and then proceeded to teach Daughter How To Meditate.

They meditated, off and on, most of yesterday. Daughter decided to Teach Her Mother. Her version went like this:

Daughter: You have to sit down on the floor, criss cross like this. In front of the voodoo doll.
Me: Buddha.
Daughter: Yes. The Buddha doll. You hold your hands the same way. And then you just ... let your mind go blank. Think about nothing. And just go with the flow.
Me: Okay. That's hard.
Daughter: Levitating is harder. But it doesn't usually happen because of ... well, gravity.