Friday, November 15, 2019

Things My Life Is Made Of

Last night I decided to reorganize the counter area to the left of my stove. No. That is not the before picture. That is the after picture. Trust me. It's a lot tidier than it was. I just have many spices and oils and vinegars and cooking wine. I have more spices in the cabinet above the stove and the mostly baking spices are on some funky built-in shelves nearby.
Also some in the freezer but we needn't dwell on this.
This story is leading to Maurice being a happier cat. I'd been keeping all of those oils and vinegars and cooking wine in a rectangular basket to keep them organized but it wasn't pleasing me anymore so I set it on the kitchen island while I was lining up bottles and when I turned around, this had happened.

And then this.

Trying it on for fit, I believe. 
Finally, the inevitable. 

She was in there when I went to bed and she was in there when I got up this morning. 
She is in there now. 
I believe she feels safe in that basket. We all know how cats love to snuggle into small enclosed places and spaces and so Maurice has done that. I've put a cozy blanket in the bottom of the basket now to make her more comfortable. Of course. Because she is my baby, albeit a scratchy baby. A bitey, scratchy baby. 
Whom I love.

Speaking of babies- this morning Jessie texted Lily and me to see what we were doing. Levon and August have had colds all week and are snorty and snotty and August has a cough. They've been stuck in the house all week long for the most part and Jessie was desperate to get out of the house. Lily had errands to run but I told Jess to bring the boys out here and Maggie, too, if she wanted. Jason is out of town this week for work training and so Lily's been holding down the fort by herself. Plus, it's just so fun to have the three littles together. 

So. Out they came. I was ready for some sweet company. 
The first thing I did was to show Maggie her dress and ask her if she would try it on for me. She did not want to try it on. She wanted to hold it up in front of her to check to see if I'd gotten the correct size. 
"It fits!" she said when she got it all straightened out and properly aligned. 
"Do you want to put it on?" I asked. 
"No," she said. 
Well, okay. 
I asked August if he would like to try his dress on. I still had some pocket decorating to do but I wanted to see if his fit him. Instead of answering at all, he merely walked out of the room to go find out where Magnolia had gone. Levon, however, was standing there. 
"I try," he said. 
"You want to put on the dress?" I asked. 
"Yes," he said. And he wore it the entire time they were here. 

It's rather large on him but fit doesn't really matter with a dress like that and he likes it so much that instead of making matching pants to go with Maggie and August's dresses, I think I'll just use the rest of the fabric to make Levon a dress in a size smaller than the one he's wearing there. It's such a simple pattern. 

The kids got along great. Mostly they loved playing hide-n-seek which is pretty fun in this old rambly house. They use Boppy's flashlight and for once, I didn't hear one bit of arguing about whose turn it was to use the flashlight. We also had another tea party. 

There were cucumber slices, small thin peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, cut up tomatoes and a nice Florida tangerine. There was SO much stirring of honey and milk. 

There was a little bead necklace making going on for awhile. And finally, after bringing it up about twenty times, August was allowed to watch some TV. Jessie made popcorn and they so happily munched and watched a kid show. 

Just as it as time to go, the children decided it was toy time and Jessie and I sighed and let them play with some little play houses and rabbits and mice. They set up the houses and I heard August say to Maggie while holding up one of the rabbits, "Hi! I'm your neighbor." 
Which was so beautiful in some way that I can't define. 
I also heard Maggie say, "Quit decorating my house!" Which I totally can define and also understand. 
Then out came the front-end loader that Kathleen got for Owen about nine years ago and they played with it in the hallway, making it go through their legs. 

Sorry for the blurry picture. 

Hilarity ensued. 

Finally, finally, Jessie got everything packed up and everyone got their shoes back on (Maggie had worn hers the entire time she was here but for some unknown reason took them off right before it was time to go) and we got them all buckled into their seats and I gave them each their going-away treat and off they went. 
I almost needed a nap. But instead, I tidied up and swept popcorn off the floor and finished some laundry and took the trash and went to the post office. And then I sat down to do a little embroidery on August's pocket and watched a documentary on Netflix about Clarence Clemons (Who Do I Think I Am?) which I've been looking forward to. I have loved Clarence Clemons since my first Bruce Springsteen concert which was in 1979, I believe, or thereabouts. He was (and oh god, this is so pathetic) the fucking SOUL of the E-Street Band. He was a god on that stage and the affection and respect between him and Bruce was impossible not to see. He was the Big Man. 
I wrote a post about Clarence and his place in the band ten years ago. You can read it HERE.
The picture I posted with it is this one. 

And that's what Bruce and Clarence did onstage for decades. Bruce would slide down the length of the stage, end up right beside Clarence, and offer his face up to that Big Man and Clarence would take him into a one-armed embrace and baby, they kissed. 

I believe I may be having the vapors. 

When Clarence died, I wrote this:
"Last night when I found out that Clarance had died, Glen was already in bed and I told him and I cried and I cried and I cried and he held me and I tried to explain what was in my heart about how Clarance had been the human, wailing voice of the E-Street Band, how he'd worn those crazy polyester suits onstage with a big ol' hat sometimes, how he could wear anything he wanted to because he was Clarance Clemons, the Big Man, and Glen just held me and said, "I know, I know."

I see I misspelled Clarence every time there. Oh well. 
So anyway, I wanted to see this doc. And it was fine. I cried. But I felt like it only portrayed a sliver of who Clarence Clemmons really was. There were moments of deep beauty in it- mostly the ones where the camera was on his face as he listened to music. He had one of those faces like Maya Angelou's. A face that was the absolute portrait of everything a human can go through as well as his or her ancestor's histories as well. All right there. 
One of the people interviewed in the film said that Clarence always added "Love Lives" to the end of everything he signed. 
And although the documentary wasn't everything I hoped it would be, that fact alone made it worth watching. 

Love lives. 

I hear he was also fond of the saying, "Order the good wine."

I raise my martini glass to that.

Happy Friday, y'all.

Love...Ms. Moon


  1. I have a strong desire to come to your house and play. Thinking now how delicious well loved patterns feel under the hands how that impossibly thin paper seems to grow thinner yet stronger as we use it. I was so glad to find stories of these exceedingly grand children tonight.

    1. I love you so. Come play any time. You know you are welcome.

  2. I doubt I'll see the documentary, but I'm glad you got to. Clarence was a great part of that great band.

    1. Oh, wait, and all the rest. Good for Maurice. Cats love small, snuggly places. I was thinking on you grands being divided into the bigs and the littles. It's not so bad to have that age gap, and it's part of who they are.

    2. It's true. Owen and Gibson are the "big kids" although Gibson still has a bit of the little kid in him. I'm glad for that.

  3. I loved Clarence...just as much as I love Bruce. I cried when he died, too. On a totally different note, I haven't watched the impeachment inquiry, but a facebook friend posted a meme, saying that 'our president' has tweeted a request for us to pray for him. Another friend commented "Psalm 109:8". Of course I had to Google it: ' May his days be few and may another take his office.' Now that's a prayer we should all get behind!

    1. Yuck on the FB meme and hurray on the Psalm! That's great!

  4. I'm a Clarence fan too and I love that photo. Your grands are lucky to have a grandma who makes boys dresses. That would have caused a firestorm in my day. Tell Maurice my cat says Meow.

    1. It would have caused a commotion in my day as well.
      Glad those days are gone.
      I'll relay your cat's greetings. Maurice will be pleased, I'm sure.

  5. I love Levon's 'I try' best! Little sweetheart.
    It's so lovely too, the green goes perfectly with the pattern.

    Ah, Bruce and Clarence.

    1. He IS a little sweetheart, Jo. He's just a doll baby. Unless he's in the mood to torture his brother...
      Bruce and Clarence. Weren't they beautiful?

  6. "Order the good wine" -- that is definitely some life advice, right there.

    I love Maurice's little bed! She was so smart to find it and claim it. And the kids look like they had a great time. Your place must be sort of magical to them -- a retreat full of toys and animals and homemade clothes unlike anything they could get anywhere else.

    1. I think you're probably right about how the kids see my house. I think of it as being a little magical myself.
      Another reason I hate leaving it.

  7. A lovely, tiring day, but a good kind of tired. Bloody cats, they're so funny. I have a couple bags of knitting around and the cat is always trying to get into them. Any boxes that come home, she's in.

    1. I remember our cats always napping in my ex-husband's guitar case. They loved it.

  8. another fun day with the littles. you know, my cat doesn't really get in small snuggly places. unless it's the bottom drawer of the filing cabinet which she creeps into when the second to bottom drawer is open. then she can't get out. I kept hearing this weird thumping the other night and it turned out to be Emma in the file cabinet.

    1. Oh, Ellen! That would be so shocking to find a cat in the file cabinet!

  9. It is such fun with little ones, and great that they all play together so well. Yes, yes, let Maurice have the spice basket! The right decision. Levon looks wonderful in the dress!

    1. Maurice has claimed it for her own. And that's fine.
      Levon does look adorable in that dress. And as Jessie says, he's man-boy enough to pull it off.

  10. This post should be titled Love Lives. It lives at your house, in all the people who play and hug and eat there. I love your hallway. I bet your grandkids will dream of it their entire lives. And that basket is so completely Maurice's now. She looks so happy.


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