Sunday, February 28, 2010


My phone was flashing when I got home
My in-laws were worried about me alone
I’d come over Wednesday, I said with a promise—
Of course, they really want to see my son, Thomas

Saturday, February 27, 2010


There was a chill in the air
So to be fair
In a coat I bundled up Thomas
But Grandma complained
That even in rain
He shouldn’t be wearing pajamas

Friday, February 26, 2010

Book 13

Book 13: Top Cat, by Lois Ehlert, Harcourt Brace & Company 1998

The other day, my toddler pulled this book off his bookshelf for me to read to him. I'm not sure why he loves it so much, but I know why I do.

I bought this book years before I had my son. The wonderful dimensional illustrations look almost exactly like my cats -- just add a mustache to the black and white one and some speckles to the striped one -- and the story was almost exactly theirs. My cats, like the ones in the book, can go from hissing to kissing and back again in two seconds flat.

My toddler loves our cats, so maybe it isn't too surprising that he would also love this book.

*For other reviews, please see Book I Buy and Why


My husband called me late today
Interrupting the baby’s play
Thomas had a lot to say
Everything was fine and OK
Until Thomas pushed the phone away

Thursday, February 25, 2010


The puggies
Were buggy
When I knocked on the door
I could hear their
Claws a-clatter
On the laminate floor

Abby yipped
And slipped
Max let out a loud yap
Thomas grinned
Drool on the chin
And he began to clap

The pugs bumped
Thomas jumped
Until on the couch they all sat
Hold the alarm
Pugs mean no harm
They’re smaller than our cats

Wednesday, February 24, 2010


Aunt Luna, Aunt Luna
What’s that on your arm?
It’s circled your bicep
I think it means harm

Don’t worry Aunt Luna
I’ll rub it for you
It’s not coming off
Hey! Is that a tattoo?

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Book 12

Book 12: Kitten's First Full Moon, by Kevin Henkes, Greenwillow Books 2004

Where to start -- What a book! The illustrations are simple, black and white, and oh-so-expressive. The story is simple, easy-to-follow, and oh-so-engaging. While "Kitten" is a completely different story, it reminded me of everything I loved about Sendak's "Where The Wild Things Are". Best of all, "Kitten" is the perfect length book to read to my toddler at bedtime.

What's not to love? -- What a book!

*For other reviews, please see Books I Buy and Why


Two parents
Their four kids
And one grandbaby
Went to dinner –
The food was immaterial
It was all about
The baby

Monday, February 22, 2010


All day
The baby plays
He doesn’t seem to miss his dad
But in the bath
He doesn’t laugh
And at bedtime he’s very sad

Sunday, February 21, 2010


Last day
With my husband
Before he leaves
For a month –
I miss him


Last day
With my husband
Before he leaves
For a month –
I miss him

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Book 11

Book 11: Where The Wild Things Are, by Maurice Sendak, Harper Collins, 1963

I was planning to review the charming Caldecott Medal book by Kevin Henkes, but after reading it, I realized I first needed to review the charming Caldecott Medal book by Maurice Sendak.

"Where The Wild Things Are" inspires more of a love/hate relationship with children (and adults) than pretty much any other children's book I know of. Either you loved it as a kid because of the bedroom changing into a forest, and Max taming the wild things to become their king, and Max's dinner still being hot when he returned from his adventure; or you just never got past the scary wild things and hated the book. Obviously, I loved it, and perhaps because my son has had a great big dog's face in his face pretty much since the day he came home from the hospital, the wild things do not scare him at all. In fact, he thinks they are funny.

Once, when I entertained art ambitions, I thought it would be great to apprentice with Maurice Sendak, especially when I saw his ballet sets. Sigh, those days are past, but I still love slipping into his world and this book is my passport.

*For other reviews, please see Books I Buy and Why


The boy in the stroller
Tilts his head back and chatters
He spies the moon –
And that’s all that matters

Friday, February 19, 2010


Fifteen months and the new smell’s gone
Until some lotion I rub on
His knees, his belly and elbows too
Now my baby smells just like new

Thursday, February 18, 2010


Two poems -- one for yesterday, and one for yesterday:


I forget how much fun

My sister and I have together

Even in freezing

Florida weather

Guinness with dinner

And we were quite jolly

And in the right mood

For Flogging Molly

We giggled like

We were nine or ten

When the boy in front of us

Kept breaking wind

Despite the stench

We enjoyed the show

Although our voices, not our noses,

Were the first things to go


Emailed from a realtor

Were houses to see

In the Summerville area

Of Charleston, SC

I found one I loved (I think) –

It had room to spare

But looking at a photo

Is not the same as being there

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Book 10

Book 10: Thomas the Tank Engine Story Collection, by the Reverend W. Awdry, Random House Collection published in 2005; first set of Awdry stories published in 1945.

My son's name is Thomas, and his daddy is into model trains, so that I would initially buy this book is a given. What surprised and delighted me is how different these tales are from those based on the PBS Thomas series. All the wit, charm and sense of place have been stripped from the original telling, and all that remains of the based-on books are stories about a blue train.

We began reading a story a night from this collection when our Thomas was about three months old. They are on the longish side, so I kept watching for squirming. There was none. I'm not sure if it was the engaging illustrations, or the apropos sound effects, or both, that held his interest, but his interest was held and we've already read through all these stories twice.

The only downside to reading and hearing the Awdry originals is it makes sitting through a Thomas video a little dull, even for the now fifteen-month-old, and especially for his mommy.

*For other reviews, please see Books I Buy and Why


I heard a story
About how a new mother
Rolled over in her sleep
And crushed her
Two-month-old baby
And my heart

Monday, February 15, 2010


On the way home
From Charleston
We stopped
At a shop
To pick up a
Sweet-grass basket
For my husband’s parents
To thank them for
Watching our
Sweet basket case dog
While we were there
I discovered my
New favorite treat –
Dried cranberries
Covered in
Dark chocolate
So good!

Sunday, February 14, 2010


I just returned from a weekend trip to South Carolina. The baby had a hard time sleeping in the hotel, so, therefore, I had a hard time sleeping in the hotel. Anyway, to spare my brain cells, the poems for yesterday and today are very short:

We walked in snow, toured towns
And visited the aquarium
We had a blast together –
That’s why I married him

When we married
We made a promise
After we married
We made Thomas

Thursday, February 11, 2010


Here are two not-very-brilliant poems for today and tomorrow (at least I wrote something, right?)

Another hour at the church
And the dining hall was transformed
It wasn’t quite wine from water
But a minor miracle was performed
Out of the attic loot
And yard sale finds
Yielded tables dressed
For the day of valentines

In twelve hours
I’ll be on the road
With my two guys
And a carload
And we will spend
In South Carolina
The weekend of

Wednesday, February 10, 2010


So, this morning I was
More than two hours
At the church
Setting up
For a
Dinner I will not
Be attending, because
That’s just how I am and
It was fun

Tuesday, February 9, 2010


My sweet little baby
Almost never cries
Except for today when he
Almost never stopped
But I still love him
And I’m glad he’s my baby
Although right now
I’m glad he’s in bed

Monday, February 8, 2010

Book 9

Book 9: The Small Adventure of Popeye and Elvis, by Barbara O'Connor, Frances Foster Books 2009

After I put the baby to bed, I jump on the computer and check my email and catch up on the blogs I follow. One of those blogs is Barbara O'Connor's Greetings From Nowhere. Barbara is witty, funny, clever, quirky and oh-so-human (see her Cafe Francais saga), so it is no wonder she can breathe life into witty, funny, clever, quirky and oh-so-human characters.

In "Small Adventure", Velma recites the kings and queens of England in chronological order. As someone who just crossed the 40-year mark and is a new mom, as I read this part of the book I was thinking this is a great way to keep one's mind sharp. Then I read Popeye's reaction. And it's perfect. And not terribly complimentary. Not only can Barbara O'Connor create characters so real that you think you know them, she can draw you so entirely into a book that you forget it is just a story.

By the time I hit the Yoo-hoo boats, there was no retreating. No way I was putting this book down until I met everyone and I found out how this story ended. So go out and buy this book. It's a short story and a fast read and not a single word is wasted. And you'll enjoy re-visiting it for years to come.

*For other reviews, please see Books I Buy and Why


There was a boom

And the cats jumped

And ran over me -- Twice

Then a rumble

And they bolted

The floor trembled

The windows rattled

The dog crate shook

With the dog inside


I rushed to the back porch

To see the plume

Of a newly-formed star

And watched it

Until it shimmered

And disappeared from sight

Then I realized

The baby didn’t cry

So I crept into his room

And he’s snoring

Just like his daddy

Sunday, February 7, 2010


I love my husband. He needs sleep
So I try to keep the house quiet
But two cats, a dog and baby
Manage to cause quite a riot

The baby starts early, in his crib
I think he is singing of heaven
His singing is lovely, but he must quiet down
It’s Sunday and not even seven

The dog in her crate lets out a whine
So sharp that glasses could shatter
Released from her crate, she’s even louder
She hits the glass door with a clatter

The baby is up and playing around
When he finds a small serving tray
He leaves the tray on the hard tile floor
And innocently he crawls away

The cats chase each other around the bedroom
And one tears out through the door
Before she can stop, she on the tray lands
And she slides across the hall floor

I tried to be quiet, really I did
But everything was louder this morning
I peek in the bedroom to check on my man
I don’t know why I was worried – he’s snoring

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Book 8

Book 8: Picasso and the Girl with the Ponytail, by Laurence Anholt, Barron's 1998

My friend, Louise Nottingham (Louise's Blog), recently reviewed this book for the library, and based on her recommendation, I bought this book. I don't always take advice, but this time I am glad I did.

"Picasso and the Girl with a Ponytail" is a sweet story with lovely and quirky illustrations. That is enough to like the book. What makes me love it is how it introduces an artist, art history and an art style in a way that make them all feel accessible to the reader.

Laurence Anholt has also written about Van Gogh and Degas. I will definitely be looking into adding those books to my son's library.

*For other reviews, please see Books I Buy and Why


I love
When my husband’s
Growing-up friends
Come to visit
And I learn a little more
About the growing-up
Of the man
I love

Friday, February 5, 2010


Commercials tell us that love
Is found in cards
Or the roses
In the diamond necklace
Bracelet or earrings
In an ocean cruise
Or under the stars
On the beach
But love is not
In any of those places
Love is in the baby’s room
Changing a dirty diaper

Thursday, February 4, 2010


I love the soft, misty rain
That falls in the evening
That sharpens the scent of the grass
And the lakes and the earth
The softly kisses the baby’s head
And my nose and cheekbones
That halos the streetlights
And headlights and flashlights

I love walking with you
In the soft, misty rain
That falls in the evening

Wednesday's poem -- Love

My sister Luna was feeling blue
And so she had one request
She wanted photos of Thomas to view
Because that would cheer her up best
So photos I took
Enough for a book
But, alas, photos I could not send
Because our modem had died
And though I had tried
The modem I just could not mend
But now all is well
I’m happy to tell
And photos I sent to my sister
Because her nephew’s
The cure for the blues
I sent them and told her I missed her

Wednesday, February 3, 2010


Here is the poem for Tuesday. My theme for the next couple weeks is Valentine's Day/Love. This poem is about one of the many reasons I love my husband. :)

What A Morning!

The baby spat out
His breakfast
And threw
His bowl
At the

Then the baby spilled his milk
All over his clothes
His chair and
The floor

Then he opened
The CD player
And jammed it

Then I tried to call
To fix our modem
But while I was
On hold
The baby fell
And banged
His head

So I put the baby
In his crib and
Tried again
This time
After a long time
Customer Service
Hung up
On me

The dog
Is wailing to
Come in
The cats
Are wailing to
Go out

So I called my husband
And felt much better
That is why
I love him

Poems for Sunday and Monday

Our modem died some time Saturday night. It's kind of frightening how dependant I've become on a computer -- being cut off from the internet affected my whole mood.

Anyway, here are the poems written, but not posted, for Sunday and Monday:

January is
Not my favorite month: It’s
A month of Mondays

Why I love February:
New month
New start
New style