So four things I think are great, huh? Isn’t that what I promised last week – or a more alliterative version of that, anyway? Well, I still hate paper clips (they are just so useless), and I am still being assaulted by pumpkin spice everywhere I go (although one reader sent me a joke image of a pumpkin spice-flavored condom, so at least I can be thankful that doesn’t actually – yet – exist), and I still think $3 is way too damn much to pay for a biscuit … but I can safely say that I am in much better humor this week. And Ruby C. (aka my Ruby) has now decided that Ruby R. is her new BFF, so I am looking on the bright side: At least at play dates, I will only have to yell one name when they are running around crazy. “Simmer down, Ruby!” will adequately cover it.

 

Just as with last week, where there were actual big issues that I didn’t address, there are actual huge things for which I am grateful: my health and that of my family, a quiet hurricane season, an improving school system, food in my stomach and gas in my car and all of that. These are four small things that are making me happy right now.

 

1.     So many neighborhood kids. We recently moved from Mid-City to Broadmoor, and I really thought I was going to miss Mid-City. I grew up in Mid-City. I adore Mid-City. And while I do miss my neighbors and the proximity of my old house to, well, everything, I love how many kids are in our new neighborhood. Ruby has made easily a dozen new friends, and she is always running over to someone’s house or answering a knock on the door from a new friend. Considering that I have spent the past seven-plus years having to elaborately schedule play dates, this is an amazing new chapter in both of our lives.

2.     Toasted Almond Cool Brew. Just because I don’t like pumpkin spice lattes doesn’t mean I don’t like flavored coffee. Toasted Almond Cool Brew is, as the kids say (I think), my jam. I love this stuff. When I lived in Missouri, I used to carry back as much as I could whenever I’d come back to New Orleans for a visit. When I evacuated for both Gustav and Isaac, I brought an ample supply of it with me. I have a French press and a Keurig, and I love them both, but I always fall back on the TACB.

3.     Co-sleeping. No, not me and the kids sharing a bed. That’s been my reality (not by choice or design, but just by sheer exhaustion), in one form or another, since Ruby was born, and I invariably wake up with feet in my face and a crick my neck. No, the co-sleeping happening now is Ruby and Georgia, and it’s awesome. I know the No. 1 rule of child sleeping is to never brag about how well your child is sleeping because they will somehow sense it and make liars of you, but honestly, even now, they’re not sleeping so well I want to brag about it. I am a huge failure at teaching humans how to sleep. But they are sleeping better now that they are sharing a bed, and I will take it. Plus they look so darn cute all snuggled up together in their pajamas.

4.     Ruby’s reading. She has just taken off in the past few months, and she told me yesterday, “Mom, if I had the choice to do anything in the whole world, I think it would probably be to read.” Be. Still. My. Heart. Watching her dive into the Ramona books (OK, yes, so I re-read them all myself, too) has been so cool, and I can’t wait for her to be old enough for Harry Potter or anything by Lois Lowry or the Alice series by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor or the Georgia Nicolson books, which we will just pretend is not the source of my younger daughter’s name because my husband was actually really shocked and offended when I told him, way after the fact, that I had picked our daughter’s name from a series of British young adult novels and told me to never speak of it again, so I’m not except for right here in my blog where I’m telling everyone. Oops.

 

Oh, and to the commenter on my prior blog asking me to explain what I meant by “the continued existence of pants and societal constraints that require me to wear them”: Sorry, that was confusing. All I meant is that I really hate pants and society frowns on public nudity. (And yes, I sometimes wear dresses, but with everything else going on in my life, I don’t manage to shave my legs on the daily, and maxi dresses are invariably too long on me, and tights make my legs itch. So often it just has to be pants.) I wasn’t making some kind of anti-feminist statement or anything; I just really wish I could wear boxers and a tank top everywhere I went, but alas. Societal constraints.