Friday, May 2, 2014

What's Making Me Happy: May 2

As I write this, I am sitting outside on my back patio. A few short days ago, it was so nasty outside (deep cold snap, high winds, dust storm) that the city issued a health alert and basically told everyone to stay inside. Not that we needed telling: who'd choose to be out in that? Just walking from the car to the grocery store left you sandblasted. I had grit in my hair and my teeth. Yum.

But now I am outdoors, it's sunny, calm, and clear, and hummingbirds and butterflies are fighting over my flowers. Spanish broom, white irises, coral-colored climbing roses, pink dianthus, and red valerian are all in bloom right now. The lilacs have just finished and the Mexican primrose and purple sage are setting up. It's pretty glorious. One might even believe summer is just around the corner. These photos were fussy to arrange on the page, so I don't want to mess with captions, but do notice the bee butt on the rosemary.



This is a great time of year to have a baby, which is precisely what I did thirteen years ago. My son's birthday was Wednesday, making me officially the mother of a two teenagers now. I've been informed I'm not supposed to like them very much anymore, and they are definitely not supposed to like me, but we seem to be kicking convention. We spend an inordinate amount of time laughing together like hyenas, possibly because my husband and I still think fart jokes are kind of funny. So happy birthday to my son: you, my boy, definitely make me happy.

Me & my li'l guy, circa 2003
A few days before my son's birthday, a friend/neighbor had her own birthday celebration with a little group of us, and as I sat looking around that table I felt profoundly grateful to have found such a community. Grandmothers, mothers, daughters; teenagers and adults. We just happened to have landed in houses next to each other—there was no guarantee we'd even like each other, much less become friends. I've never lived among such a tight-knit (yet low-maintenance) group of people before, and especially because I'll be moving in about a year, I really appreciate what I've got.

Here are some things to make you smile, too:

It's not just "schadenfreude." German has the perfect word for everything, including "the pressure to make bantering small talk with people you see every day." Yes: one word captures that.

This guy's sciency animal videos. Learn some true facts, just make sure you don't have a mouthful of water while you're watching. Because it will come out your nose.

Speaking of science and animals and kinda funny, I heard this story last night on NPR, normally not a bastion of hilarity, and it made me giggle. Needs to be listened to.

That's about it! (I haven't been online much this week.) If you came across a happy-making thing, please share it. Have a great weekend, everyone!

14 comments:

  1. I can't wait to spend some time in your beautiful garden!

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    1. The garden will appreciate having you around to nurture it!

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  2. Don't let anyone convince you that the teens aren't fabulous. They were the favorite years as I watched all 3 kids go through them. My husband preferred the early years, but not me.

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    1. It's so rewarding to watch them become their own people, isn't it?

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  3. Yeah, what Kerry said. I enjoyed our kids (and their friends) when they were teenagers, too. Now, I enjoy our teenaged grandchildren. I think if you have a good relationship with a child, it doesn't automatically end because of any age. Having a good sense of humor helps.

    (I didn't see a bee butt... or rosemary...)

    Oh, I loved that website with all those zillion-letter words. No wonder they don't play Scrabble. (I had a pic on facebook with a store with a long word on it and the line about Scrabble, and a German friend said, "You're damned right!")

    Happy weekend!

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    1. The rosemary is the first photo, with the blue-purple flowers, and the bee butt is near the bottom, in the center. I was going to make the photos larger but Blogger is a bit tricky to work with when you're adding photos.

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  4. You are most fortunate in your neighbors--- also in your teenage children. You share laughter with them. In my experience, the best communication is accompanied by laughter.

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  5. Lovely flowers. I fear that I was not such good company for my mother when I was a teenager. You must be so pleased that your kids are growing into such nice young people.

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    1. I was also a highly unpleasant teenager. I didn't get into trouble, I was just surly. So glad my kids aren't like that.

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  6. 'I've been informed I'm not supposed to like them very much anymore, and they are definitely not supposed to like me, but we seem to be kicking convention.'

    And this does not surprise me in the least. I'm so, so, so glad you wrote that, Stephanie. I absolutely love the picture of you and son ca 2003. I send my deepest wishes for a very, very happy birthday to him and all my love to your garden, in every way that it manifests. :)

    xx

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    1. Thank you, sweetie! The only thing missing is you and the kid, sitting in the Adirondack chairs and enjoying some ice cream.

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  7. Schadenfreude - middle school in a nutshell.

    I like the one about trains, too. I love that brief sensation of feeling like you're moving when you're not.

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    1. Yes! That is such a weird feeling.

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