Feb 29 2012

Leap Year Love

Love-QuotesTonight, crossing the tall bridge at Bryant with Foxy Brown, I glanced down and saw a couple standing on the bike path next to the creek. I looked away, then looked back. The girl flung her arm up in the air and I saw the flash of her phone as she yelled up to me: WE’RE ENGAGED! WOOOHOOO! You know the woohoo that I mean – that sound of exultation that’s unique to American girls, who grow up to be American women and never stop making that sound.

I stopped in my tracks, my mitten at my chest and gasped as the words registered. Engaged! One woohoo deserves another, and I let one fly. Woohoooo! It drifted down to them like a blessing. Congratulations, you guys! You made my night! I yelled as I walked on. Thank god I had decided to take that bridge. I grinned at the girl’s need to shout it from the rooftops – her tall man by her side, thanking me quietly, sheepishly.

And maybe it was the fresh air, or my new furry girl who I love so much, or the fact that I was on my old street, but I started to cry. A burst of tears I didn’t see coming, left as quickly as it came. They weren’t tears of sadness or tears of joy – they were tears of just so much. So much has happened since Dash and I got engaged in my little apartment at 37th and Bryant. The wedding, the babies, the fevers, the jobs, the moves, the birthdays. Life. So much. Life.

And this little couple, getting engaged on a warm leap year night by Minnehaha Creek. Little do they know. It’s just so much.

Feb 27 2012

Music Monday – Tiny Dancer

Hold me closer tiny dancer. Count the headlights on the highway.

Simply because, it’s simply the best. YouTube Preview ImageLost my wits when the band played this on Saturday night at our school dance party in the gym. Thank goodness Dash was close at hand to contain me and spin me around a bit. God, I love this song. No one does it like Elton, though I must say John Frusciante does it pretty fucking well. A little Chili Peppers for fun. YouTube Preview Image

Feb 24 2012

Soupapalooza: Week 2 – Hearty Minestrone

minestroneThis soup is perfection on a winter’s day and super healthy too. Check out the recipe along with one of my earliest and dearest food memories involving my sweet dad.

Feb 22 2012



Second day in a row she’s wearing these to school. Does this qualify as a thing yet? Maybe after three days.

She’s been asking for glasses forever. Mama’s been ignoring the request for exactly that long. So Devil Baby took matters into her own hands and converted a pair of 3-D glasses from the movie we saw on Saturday.

Nicely done, DB. They suit you.

Feb 20 2012

Music Monday: Teach Me How to Dougie

YouTube Preview ImageThis past weekend, Saint James was invited to his first party, with both boys and girls. Supergirl is good friends with the host’s younger sister so to her great joy, she was invited too. By all accounts, it was a blast and from what I hear, the kids just danced and danced and danced. Nanook’s words after sneaking a peak: “they were in full Dougie.”

Am I crazy, or have things changed? Since when does a room full of boys feel comfortable showing off their moves under the shattered light of a disco ball? From what I remember of school dances, it was always just a mob of spazzy girls dancing, the boys shuffling around the perimeter until a slow dance came on and maybe one brave soul would emerge from the pack to approach a girl (sigh, never me).

It appears the kids today have obliterated all such awkwardness. For all the talk of the isolating effects of technology, I would have to say that based on this admittedly tiny sample size, all is well in the social department for our youth. They hung out, talked, laughed, goofed off, included the younger kids who happened to be there and danced. Maybe sixth grade just happens to be a golden window for this kind of freedom and frankly, coolness. But I can’t help but hope this portends of how it’s going to be. Now I just need someone to teach ME how to dougie.

Feb 16 2012

Poor Peevish

MontiPoor, poor peevish, I feel like I’ve been neglecting you in favor of writing about soup and more insultingly, your sexier, flashier cousin Spectacular Bitch.

It’s going to take me a little while to figure out this writing gig. Traditionally, I have not been a big computer person. I never got sucked into the hours of surfing the web that gripped so many of us in the early nineties and never let go. At work, I’d call my mom or a friend or page through a fashion magazine if I needed a break. I never turned on the computer at night unless I needed to check the movie times. I was blissfully free and I didn’t even know it.

How times have changed. I’m juggling just a few different writing projects, but I find myself on-line, or at least on-laptop for WAY more time than I’m used to. And it doesn’t feel good in my body. I feel cloudy, groggy and all around nasty. I don’t like sitting still. I don’t like staring at a screen. I don’t like feeling gross.

I suppose I should have thought about this before I started writing. But here’s the thing. I love to write. I love this little community of readers. And peevish mama is very, very special to me.

With your patient and willing ear, you helped me create a habit of writing things down. This is a place where I can stash my thoughts and the shiny pebbles that I happened to find scattered around in my real or virtual life. It’s a place where I can work through the highs and lows of parenting a young family and of being this very strange age that looks like adulthood but feels like adolescence.

I’ve hit rough patches and lean patches and cuckoo-in-my head patches with peevish mama before, and I was able to write myself through. Maybe I can do it one more time.

So hang with me while I figure myself out. Yet again.

Feb 13 2012

Music Monday: This is Poliça

Valentine’s Day is Dash and my quasi-anniversary. It’s sort of when we started going out, or rather when I stopped playing foolishly, flippantly hard to get. It was 1992, we cooked steak with blue cheese in the creaky blue house on St. Peter’s Street that I shared with five other girls. It seems like a lifetime ago and yet just yesterday.

We pay attention to Valentine’s Day. It’s a good day for me and my man. Some years we cook at home, some years we go out. This year we are stepping out for the Poliça concert. The singer, Channy Moon Caselle, was also in GAYNGS, who I LOVE, and Roma di Luna, who I didn’t know, but is no longer together. Poliça plays around with auto tune to great effect and there are TWO sets of drummers. Caselle is a songbird and the whole mess is cool, hypnotic and SEEEEXXXXXY! Perfect for Tuesday night. After the show we’ll find a perch at a bar and feast. I can’t wait. Tuesday! Tuesday! Let it be Tuesday! YouTube Preview Image

Feb 13 2012

R.I.P. Whitney

whitney_houston1Could she have been more talented, promising, bubbly and flat out gorgeous? She should have grown old and become one of the QUEENS.

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Feb 12 2012

Psssst . . .

coachellaspectacularbitchesCat’s out of the bag!


Feb 11 2012

Soupapalooza 2012!

SOUPI’m writing a series for my friends at Simple Good and Tasty featuring four soups in four weeks. Soupapalooza, baby. Check it out. This week is a delectable Squash Soup with Coconut and Ginger. In addition to an easy and toothsome recipe, you’ll learn why I tend to become obsessed with soup at the beginning of a new year.

Feb 10 2012

Of children, moths and octopi

parakeets-smallDoctor Dash’s sister, my sis-in-law, Mamartiste – also known out in the world as Claudette Lambert Peterson, is an artist/illustrator. I have admired her work for exactly as long as I have known Dash. I remember looking at a painting of Albert Einstein in his room when we met senior year of college and loving the fact that he sat in a floating chair and was surrounded by winking stars. It’s lovely.

Mamartiste has always worked as an artist, even in the busiest bleary-eyed times of raising her three girls. If she wasn’t creating for the outside world, she was creating for the people she loves. Recently Dash and I received a set of the most intricate and beautiful drawings of dragon flies and moths for our 40th birthdays. They are absolutely stunning and to me, speak so much of her generous artistic spirit. The detail is breathtaking – I can’t even begin to imagine how long she spent on these, how many delicate, painstaking, loving hours. There is no quick for Mamartiste, no half way. WE LOVE.

Her girls are growing and so is she as an artist. She recently pulled together a very beautiful website featuring her work, which I’d like to share with you. We all struggle with finding time in the day to do what we want to do, because contrary to popular belief, you don’t actually end up with all that much extra time on your hands when  your kids go to school. School hours are subject to different laws of time, it seems, than regular hours. At least for the mamas. And for a creative mama, like Mamartiste, who can’t rush inspiration, can’t rush the quiet she needs to create, it can be quite a challenge. But art is her love, it is inside of her and lucky for all of us, she continues to press on.

Feb 6 2012

Music Monday: Florence and the Machine

I’m feeling as scattered as chicken feed. I’m woozy and hungover from a weekend away with my increasingly rowdy book club. I’ve got something up my sleeve that I’m getting ready to spring on the world. I don’t seem to have time for anything these days. And I’m kind of in love with this lanky red head. She’s a cerebral fashionista and that’s not even what she really does with her life. Cool chick. And in addition to the aforementioned, I’m saaaaaad we got shut out of tix for her April show. Sniff. OK, back to scattered life. Maybe after listening one more time.   YouTube Preview Image

Feb 1 2012

Soooooouuul Train

soulTwitter isn’t good for much, but it is good for finding out things like the fact that Don Cornelius, the creator of Soul Train, died of suicide at age 75. Rest in peace, Don. This bit of sad news brought back vivid memories of watching Soul Train on the brown shag rug in the basement of the house my parents fled in favor of new construction, because the molds were giving me asthma. In fact, I believe that shag rug was largely to blame for many of my issues as a tween, asthma-related and otherwise.

I remember being entranced by the dancers on Soul Train – their outfits were so wild and their moves were so fine. Nothing like that ever happened in my house. In honor of Don Cornelius, I decided to see if I could find any Soul Train on youTube and, OHMYGODYOUGUYS, this NEVER happens, but it’s even better than I remember. Nothing is ever better than you remember. See for yourselves. I must warn you that this is possibly the most wildly entertaining thing you will have watched in a long time. And it begs the question: WHY NO SOUL TRAIN TODAY? Come ON!

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