Friday, July 11, 2008

you'll choke!

We have raspberries. Growing in our very own yard. I am still blown away by my new life, by my suburban riches. I keep marveling to myself, mouth askew, "I have a driveway, a yard, a raspberry bush..." I must look like a mental patient to the neighbors.

As I nibble a sweet berry I must note, Stella has officially turned terrible two. She still has her positive qualities, but holy magoly.

All she wants when I'm around is her daddy, to pick her up, to help her with her Crocs, to get her cereal, blah blah, and like another little girl we know, only wants to do everything "all by self!!!!" which means that I get to stand outside the car while she attempts to buckle herself into her carseat, or I get to stand holding heavy (reusable) grocery bags on the back stairs while she attempts to open the screen door, God forbid I touch the handle! Who do I think I am? Satan?

Lots of flinging of bananas, smearing of milk, asking for food and then not eating it, refusing to get dressed, insisting on wearing flip flops that never stay on her feet, while I stand there grinding my teeth and talking like a Sleestack in order to keep my cool.

My cool, heh heh. Yeah, right. And then the other night my mom was over, bless her almost seventy-five year old heart, and she was nagging the kids, and doing her worry jig, "don't run around with beads on your neck, Stella, you'll get strangled!" and "Stella? Where is she?" panic mounting in her voice as if the UPS man just stole her out of the house, and then "Hamish! don't put that plastic thing in your mouth, you'll choke!"

And by then both my eyes were twitching, and the words erupted from my mouth like bad fish, "Oh Mom, let him choke!" at which point my mom spit out her seltzer all over me, and I got down on the floor with a wad of paper towels, grateful for laughter, because I'd just about forgotten it existed.

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

lulu miller 1992 - 2008

Stella's stitches are out, her scar is but a pink wisp, I am happy about the lack of disfigurement and that this ordeal is now behind us. She screamed her head off through the whole removal process while Bryan and I held her down and sung Twinkle Twinkle, ABCs, Baa Baa Black Sheep, Rainbow Connection, whatever we could think of. The songs were the only thing that coaxed her frightened little body to relax beneath our grip.

Turns out we should have removed the band-aid a day or so before we took her to get the stitches removed because everything got compressed under there and the skin had started to grow over the stitches. Remember this, parents, the next time your kid bashes her head into the sharp, unforgiving corner of your otherwise well-behaved furniture. It would have taken five minutes instead of fifteen, but we are through it.

Meanwhile, the cat died Wednesday. She was sixteen years old, hyperthyroid-compromised, and died of heart failure at the vet's, they euthanized her, after collapsing in a pee and drool puddle on the guest room floor. We buried her in one of the boxes my overstocked novels were packed in. I made sure to take the novels out first.

At the funeral we reminisced about how reluctant Lulu had been to accept Hamish into the fold, how Stella pulled her tail and delighted in her kitty-ness. Hamish said he was thankful for the box of Nerds he got from the free snack table at the vet's while Stella cried, "Box! Box!" her small shoulders heaving with sorrow for the dirt-covered corrugated cardboard. Lulu, you are in a better place now. Tell your brother Giuseppe we said HI, and rest in peace, old gal.