24 February, 2011

She Moves In Mysterious Ways

After MUCH anticipation, we found out on Monday we are having *DRUMROLL PLEASE* another baby GIRL! My family--making the world a girlier place. We are completely thrilled!

Because we all know this is where babies come from.......

The best part about having another girl? Telling our daughter she will have a sibling she can essentially treat like a live dolly. Iris screamed so loud upon the news, I am certain we sustained permanent ear damage. 

Early in the pregnancy, we attempted to prepare Iris for the fact she may not get what she wanted (a sister) and would have to learn to play with a brother. As my husband and I have nothing but brothers, we used our experience to drum up how AWESOME brothers could be. Obviously, we deleted all the parts when they can be downright turds and totally drive you nuts. Better leave that as a "learn from experience" moment for Iris down the road. I talked about how they will ALWAYS play the evil villain to your princess/queen/cowgirl/superhero, join you on any game that involves getting dirty, and cringe much to your pleasure at a game of Barbies. ;)

We are curious if this child will be anything like her older sister. So far she is the exact opposite. Our sonogram Monday was the SECOND sonogram we had to determine gender. During the first sonogram, no matter how much we moved the wand and jiggled my belly the baby simply would not uncross her legs or stop turning her back on us. She wouldn't show us her business. Even at the second sonogram, she showed us her genitalia and quickly closed her legs. 

Clearly, we have a very shy and modest baby on our hands. Anyone who knows me or my daughter finds this HILARIOUS. We are rather outgoing gals. Will this baby be more laid back, like her father? Will the baby be a balance of both her nutty Momma and mellow Daddy? Only time will tell. And I cannot wait to meet her.

Currently, we are accepting applications for names. We are at a complete and total loss. We might name her "Girl" if we cannot find one. None of the names, however can be on this list. Half of them are just downright ridiculous. Makayla? Seriously!?! First of all people, it is spelled Michaela and secondly that little girl is going to be one odd-named woman at Bingo seventy years from now.

19 February, 2011

Little Things

After watching some TV with the hubby last night, we retreated to our temporary sleeping arrangements--he in the guest room and I in our bedroom. I am on Day 3 of the flu and separation is to keep him well. Honestly, he eagerly moved to the guest room after he slept next to me Wednesday night in all my sweaty, fever-crazed rambling hotness. I woke up smelling like a gym bag full of dirty socks. RETREAT!

This idea was fantastic during the hallucinatory phase of the illness. I tossed and swatted and yammered so much no one next to me could have slept. Last night I began to miss him. After reading nearly all of F. Scott Fitzgerald's The Last Tycoon and forty rounds of solitaire I could not settle down. I got up nearly ten times, walked to the guest room door, then walked back to our bedroom. Except for now it is my bedroom. The change of ownership caused insomnia.

I could not go to Iris's room, kiss her gently on the cheek, reposition her horizontally on the bed and tuck her in. I couldn't watch her sleep a couple of minutes, think as I do every night She is the most gorgeous and audacious little girl. I am so lucky to be her Mommy. 

Iris's stillness before I turn in. Nathan's deep, slow breathing as I settle down. His arm wrapped around my waist as I doze off. Small things I don't stop to appreciate until they are taken away. The ritual comforts. The irreplaceable.

18 February, 2011

Flu-lapalooza: Day 2

It is official--the flu totally sucks. TOTALLY. I asked a friend of mine, "Do you think I am just being a whiny butt about the flu because I hardly get sick? Am I miserable because I am not used to pestilence?" Her reply was, "Hell no! The flu is awful any way you cut it."

I have to admit, I despise talking about illness. YES, I am blogging about it (only to keep my sanity) but seriously, one day I will get old and it will be ALL I talk about. I love my grandmas to death and this always takes up at least 40% of our phone conversations. Followed by food. Then making fun of people on TV.


One thing about being dog-ass sick is it heightens my ability to detect unusual behavior patterns. I am not sure if they are coping mechanisms or universal to everyone while sick. You all be the judge.

I am sick enough to believe Oscar lives in the trash can by my bed.

Put a Trash Can Near My Bed. Even if I don't have the pukes, I always put a trash can near my bed when I am sick. I think it is to eliminate getting out of bed to throw away tissues and food wrappers. I cannot get well in filth.

Whenever us kids were ill, Mom would always put what we called "The Puke Pot" by our bed. It was the largest pot we had in the house and its sole purpose was to throw anything you want (including puke if you had to) into it. It kept things nice and neat.

However, you had to forget "The Puke Pot's" illness function when Mom made a huge pot of navy beans or cooked batches of salsa for canning, otherwise you were grossed the heck out. Thank God "The Puke Pot" got a hole in it and was permanently sanctioned as the "Forever Chamber of All Things Gross."

Stammer Stammer Stammer Blue Eyes.

Watch Movies Starring Hugh Grant. Honest to goodness, I don't know why the hell I do this while sick. Like ANYTHING Hugh Grant is in, I will watch. I wasted two hours of my life this morning watching Notting Hill. I had seen it in the theatres with my Mom and HATED it. The supporting characters were the only interesting part. Perhaps Hugh Grant movies are easy to digest? It may also be that Hugh Grant's characters--kind, mildly smart-arsed, prone to stammers around women, encumbering hairdos that require much brushing of the hands through, cheeky romantic gestures, definitely rational, quietly confident, and the uncanny ability to look at a woman as if she were the only person in existence--are many of the qualities I find attractive. Let me be clear--his characters, not him. I seriously just described my husband and the other people in my life for whom I ever had the deepest, most obsessive crushes over. Hugh Grant=comfort zone.

And on the 2nd day, No Basement made some toast, because she was too tired to do anything else.

Eat Anything On Top of Toast. Toast is a no-brainer when sick. Instant meal. In the past 48 hours, I ate the following on toast:

--Eggs on toast
--Peanut butter on toast
--Nutella on toast
--Melted cheese on toast
--Baked beans on toast
--Jam on toast
--Spaghetti Sauce & Mozzarella cheese on toast (mini-pizza!)
--Toast on Toast.

Toast is an underrated food. If nuclear fallout happens and I have a loaf of bread, ain't nothing going to keep this girl down.

This lady is officially beat. See you all on the other side of this influenza. I like to say that with a ridiculous British accent. In--FLUUUU-en-za!

Crap, I am sick. So incredibly sick. Speaking with a British accent. Didn't Britney Spears do that shortly after she shaved her head? I need to lie down.

I hope reading this didn't waste too much time out of your life. Consider yourself lucky--you didn't watch Notting Hill for TWO HOURS today.
Published with Blogger-droid v1.6.6

17 February, 2011

Flu Shot

This pregnant cargo came down with the flu yesterday. Yuck to the 10th power. Last time I had the flu? When I was pregnant with Iris.

I am typing this blog with my Blogger phone app. Been in bed all day, sucking on popsicles, sipping water, and listening to the church bells from down the street. I've fever sweated through my husband's Nirvana shirt and about to do the same damage to another. This all too shall pass.

The photo above is my night stand. Glamorous, I know. It is important to note my physician, Dr. Iris, prescribed grape Pez to ease my symptoms. When they run out, she advised me she would switch me on the "strong stuff" and refill my snowman with lemon Pez. I should be right as rain in no time!
Published with Blogger-droid v1.6.6

16 February, 2011

Snow Days

I didn't go to work for the entire first week of February due to a massive ice and snow storm. Record low temperatures and inches of ice everywhere mostly kept us indoors.

We had a lot of fun throwing snowballs and sword fighting with icicles. I am glad North Texas shuts down when it snows and ices, unlike the rest of the U.S.. We always have a blast in the quiet blanket over our little world. And a steady diet of homemade soup and baked goods doesn't hurt, either.

15 February, 2011

The Family Museum

Last fall I was one busy momma/wife/professor/all-around human being. I made my directorial debut at the college with The Collected Shorter Works of Samuel Beckett AND dragged through my first trimester of my second pregnancy. The exhaustion mixed with elation was an excellent reminder of what it feels to have a newborn. The production was like a pregnancy--lots of work, lots of effort, some tears, some unexpected surprises and a great experience for all by the opening night curtain. I wouldn't trade any day of it, even the days I literally directed the show lying across the stage with the stomach flu.

How on earth did I do it? Two recent events gave me pause to reflect. First, I was contacted by my uber talented friend Cristina Pippa to guest blog on the lovely collective How She Does It blog. I am deeply honored to join these amazing creative ladies and share my experience as a "Mamaturg."

Here's a little math:

Mama + Dramaturg=Mamaturg

Motherhood + Dramaturgy=Mamaturgy

I hope these words will one day join the Merriam-Webster dictionary. Until then, a girl can dream. You might also need a dictionary to know what a "dramaturg" is and what "dramaturgy" does. It happens often. I like how it makes me feel like a spy, doing secret work in the theatre.

Okay! Back to the original arc of the post. The second event that answers "how I do it" is this:

During a cold day last fall, my five-year-old daughter Iris arranged a collection of items on the floor. I immediately went into tired Mommy mode and exclaimed, "Iris, pick your stuff up off the floor."

Iris replied, "But Mommy, this is our museum. I can't put it away until you stop to look at it."

The child asked her frazzled, morning sick, how-am-I-going-to-finish-the-fall-semester Mommy to stop and observe. These simple objects, arranged by tiny hands, communicated our family to my daughter. The Converse sneakers and tissues belong to Daddy. The American Theatre and film books belong to Mommy. The toys, puzzles and Lite Brite patterns belong to Iris.

At the moment my daughter stopped me, I wasn't in the mood. I had a mountain of papers to grade, I'd spent half the morning lying on the bathroom floor with morning sickness, and I had rehearsal for the show in the evening. But her persuasive insistence won me over. I had to stop and look.

I asked my little curator to explain the museum. Her answer was simple, "This stuff is from everyone in our family. I wanted to see how it all looked together. It also shows we have a lot of fun."

I stared at the objects for a few minutes, gave Iris a big hug and snapped the picture. I wanted the picture to remind me "how to do it." By "it" I mean being a mother, wife and creative person. The only way I know is to put it all together, not isolate one role from the other, and let the parts inform the whole that is me. I also cannot let one of these roles diminish into the background. If I stop working on being a wife, my mothering and art suffers. If I stop working on being a professor, director and writer, I have nothing to say and I will show nothing of my life's passion to my children. If I stop mothering, how can I communicate the nurturing process that is educational theatre or the beauty of a self-donative act of love? It simply doesn't happen.

Sure, there are days where the last thing I want to do is teach a class, make a peanut butter Nutella sandwich or listen to my husband vent about a difficult day. We all have those moments. The key to helping me stay upbeat, stay sane and live my version of the good life is to remember how all of my many roles in life are a reflection of the other. There is inevitable day where I teach to a bored class on Medieval Drama, barely say "hi" and "goodnight" to my husband and make supper using the microwave. But in the end, I "did it," even if it was imperfect. And as my daughter says, "We have a lot of fun." Yup, through it all, we really do.

10 February, 2011


Me=Maternity pillow for sleep & comfort.

Iris=Totally AWESOME lounging pillow.

To each her own.