September is my favorite month. The cynics among you who know me well will assume it’s only because the children are back in school, but that’s not the case. It’s because of autumn.
I’m not into pumpkin spice everything. (Does it occur to anyone that pumpkin isn’t a spice? And pumpkin spice is a spice blend? It’s not like one spice. Anyway.) It’s just the season itself–the crisp mornings, the changing colors, the rain, the last burst of summer we often get when it’s still comfortable to wear sandals and capris during the day, but we have to put on jackets in the evening. This is my favorite time of year–that time before the brutal East Wind starts driving icepicks through our chests here on the west end of the Columbia River Gorge, before the encroaching Christmas rush threatens to choke the joy out of the whole season, before the long stretch of darkness in January and February depletes all the vitamin D from the Pacific Northwest population. It’s after the heat, after the harried rush of summer, after the bickering siblings go back to school. It’s a lull–a rest–a retreat. (more…)
It’s morning here–12:35 a.m., to be precise. I should be asleep, especially since I slept the last two nights on the ground (camping) and I’m too old to do that without consequences. But I’m wide awake because of course I am.
Anyhoo… Since I can’t sleep, I thought I’d take some time to update y’all on my whereabouts and goings on. (more…)
It’s terrifying. I don’t say that lightly. I mean it’s literally heart-pounding, anxiety-provoking, terror-inducing. I don’t know how I’ve managed to get this far, and the only reason I keep moving forward is because of this weird compulsion to publish. Somehow, the work just isn’t complete until it’s “out there,” and I have to get it out there, out of my head, off my back. (more…)
That moment you think you have six months left in your demanding volunteer job, but then realize it’s only five months:
Pretty sure Schroeder and Lucy represent the folks in my troop who want me to change my mind.
Overall, really, everyone has been super about my decision. They get it. And I’ve been in this job for three years and on the governing board of my troop for a total of five years. It’s time for a break.
Of course, I think people want me to change my mind, but not this time (I’ve done it before). This is a good time for me to step down. The troop is stable, we have a great charter organization, we have an active and involved parent group, and the girls are thriving. I’m leaving at a high point.
In any case, June 7 is my last day in this job. I’m nearly giddy. I know summer will be its normal, frantic self, so I don’t know how much writing will get done then. But I do know that some will get done next fall.
School is officially in session for all four kids. The youngest started on September 1, the freshman started on the 8th, and the junior and the 7th grader started on the 9th. And it’s been quite a ride so far. The oldest three went from a small private school to a large public high school and medium-sized public middle school. All the kid activities are in full swing, too. Lots of changes–lots of stress. We’re still working on settling everything down.
On top of those things, our freezer is dying, and the kids’ bathroom has a leak somewhere around the bathtub. We haven’t found it yet. I’d move, but the quality of the neighborhood has taken a nose dive, and I don’t see it improving any time soon. Plus, moving with four kids just really isn’t appealing at all.
But the biggest thing is that I seem to keep bumping up against conflict every time I turn around right now. (more…)