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LIFE (permalink) 06.30.2015
uncertainty settled
i was making some new benches for our front porch (in part due to a new, totally sweet, dowling jig i recently bought). i was modeling them after a bench i made several years ago. between my superior skills (compared to several years back) and improved tools (uhhh, dowling jig), i considered upgrading to a higher grade of of wood. the problem point here is that it would add a fair bit of cost to the project so i wanted to make sure i could pull the benches off without any issues.

while getting things organized, i stepped out to the porch to take measurements on my existing bench. while crouched down and measuring the various parts and pieces, i noticed how the top slabs of wood, where you sit, had deep divots and mars in them from the kids various projects. the most damning of the marks came from our meat tenderizer hammer where, i recalled this day specifically, the kids went through a multi-day period of busting open acorns for sport using the medieval looking meat hammer as the pounder and my hand-made bench as the worktop. i imagined my reaction to them doing this, or any other number of their child-divined games, on high-dollar pieces of lumber versus the simple treated wood i've historically used.

then, from my crouched position, i recalled one of the first and most meaningful parental lessons i ever learned: you can love your things or you can love your children, but you can't love both.

after completing my notes, i, with nary a reservation, went and bought my low-grade planks of wood.

VIDEO, MUSIC (permalink) 06.12.2015
great, right down to the album title: Same Trailer Different Park
bella turned me onto this girl awhile back. at first i expected just another wispy dove-voiced girl who looked and moved right. but in each of the three videos my daughter sent me of the girl's work, i was repeatedly struck by her lyrics and storytelling. i'm not sure if she writes her own stuff or not but if so she's got a real talent for observation and bending it to fit her need. if it's someone else, she's got a good songwriter backing her up. i for one loved the days where songs more consistently made storytelling part of the craft (e.g. johnny b good, american pie).

HEALTH (permalink) 06.11.2015
we just look like we were in a knife fight a few days ago.
here's a recent lesson on aging marty and i just bumped into. scars on older people stick around much longer and in an uglier, darker form than when you're young. i commented on how two cuts i recently got were acting like they weren't in any rush to go away. she flashed me her own battle wound and it looked almost exactly like mine. to add to it she told me to keep an eye on anthony, a kid who seems to get a minimum of one cut/bruise a day, as you can almost watch his skin heal back to perfection before your eyes.

if you are storming up on this lovely physical milestone as well, the good news is while our external mars don't go away so easily, the internal cuts that used to take weeks and months (or longer) to heal in our teens and twenties, barely break our thicker, tougher emotional skin these days. so aging, as people sometimes like to claim, isn't just broken eggs and spilt milk—there is a fluffy, cheese-filled omelet (or two) sitting within arms reach as well. you just have to look on that side of the table.

WEB, PHOTO (permalink) 06.10.2015
a new GALLERY IMAGE was posted today.
JUNE 2015

KIDS (permalink) 06.09.2015
calling them as he sees them.
during school anthony would visit a speech therapist a few times a week. she was helping him with a few sounds he seems to stumble on when talking fast, like R's (my struggle when his age were any words with double-Ls). she, like seemingly all speech therapists, is young, charisma-heavy and attractive. she smiles big and talks with great positivity and brightness. both marty and i were struck by her after meeting at a patent-teacher conference. a few weeks after making her acquaintance a school-day story made its way back to us.

moments before anthony walked into the speech-lady's office she fumbled her drinking glass and spilled water down the front of her shirt. she dabbed it up as best as possible and then went about work. she greeted anthony when he stepped into the room and told him to take his seat. then as she turned to face him our second-grade anthony said:
i think your boob leaked some milk.
as is her nature she handled this unexpected comment with grace and humor. it probably didn't hurt that she was in fact a breast-feeding mother (not that anthony had any idea about that--but perhaps there is a look or a smell though--although it is probably more the case that he thinks all young women are breastfeeding some human). she later told marty she was struck by the ease and confidence of the eight year old's comment to which marty simply said, "well, you can tell he's a boy who saw a good number of years of breast feeding--maybe possibly a few more years than he should have."

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