All posts by kirizar

About kirizar

I am all things to all people. As long as people are looking for a mom with diverse interests and a homebound tendency to look through the window of life and wish (or imagine) something just a little bit different. I am like the Tardis on Doctor Who. I am much bigger on the inside.

Angry Birds – Swan Lake Edition

The story I am about to relate is entirely true. I have no proof beyond a few still photos and a panicked ‘before’ video. Now that I am home and pond scum-free, I’m not even sure I believe it happened. You be the judge.

🦢🦢🦢🦢🦢🦢🦢

Continue reading Angry Birds – Swan Lake Edition

Sprint to the Finish

In case a blog can actually expire from lack of writing or visitors, I am writing this placeholder.

I have not fallen off the planet.

I did at least manage to fight against entropy/depression long enough to post today’s accomplishment.

HERE IT IS!!

I finally called a Sprint gift card/rebate credit card company to verify that not only was the account closed…but that there was no balance at the time.

SEVEN YEARS THAT CARD HAS BEEN IN MY WALLET. I FINALLY CUT IT UP TODAY!

This has to be the sign of good things to come, right?

Or possibly it is a sign that avoiding completing the Annual Report of Guardianship for my son– due next week–will motivate me to do just about anything else.

Sigh…back to finding and recording receipts.

No Greater Expectations on Mother’s Day

We have a quiet Mother’s Day, my son and I. He came down with a terrible head cold on Saturday which means that, by Sunday, he is a hacking-wracked ball of phlegm and we can’t go visit grandma as planned. I call to invite her to come to our house instead–at least, to the outside of it. (She is immunocompromised–so masks and open air are her best friends.) The weather is perfect for an alfresco get together to chat and exchange Mother’s Day gifts. We agree on 1:00 pm and I hang up. Ordinarily, I’d leap into frenzied action, but it’s Mother’s Day and I make a different choice. A better one.

Anytime someone is going to come over, I usually have to engage in a massive disaster relief effort–the kind of clean up that happens after a storm has threatened to wipe a town off the map and leaves a ton of broken things to be hauled away. Only in this scenario–I am the tornado. Things are thrown down the laundry hamper. The dishes are piled into the dishwasher (or out of the dishwasher to make room for the newer, dirtier dishes.) Books are stacked as if they might, just might, get back to the library some day. Maybe.

As a rule, I make an attempt to provide plausible deniability that I am not, in fact, a borderline hoarder. Stuff gets shoved into rooms with locking doors. I am not a cleaner, so much as I am a denier of filth crimes. A hider of clutter. A shover of just-one-more-thing-into-the-junk-drawer fanaticism. Things get tidied because otherwise I fear someone might just call social services to report me for my lackadaisical housekeeping standards. Dammit.

But with the kid home sick I’ve had no help since Friday. I had a big mailing to finish for work which took priority, and the house shows it. With only a few hours until Grandma stops by, addressing the mess seems futile. Not to mention, since we are meeting out-of-doors, kind of pointless. Unless she needs to use the restroom.

With the kid coughing up germs left, right, and center–sometimes directly into your face–it seems prudent to at least try to minimize Grandma’s risk of contracting whatever plague he has. I douse the bathroom in a bleaching chemical bath and spray the faucets with antibacterial Lysol, change the towels, and call it good enough.

Outside, I drag the not-entirely-non-oxidizing-metal yard furniture in place and scrub to get last year’s bird poop off as best I can. I put the umbrella up, but I can’t drag the heavy base from the garage to keep it stable. So the furled edges flutter slightly whenever the warm air lazily passes by–nudging the ribbed canopy, fluffing it like a dancer’s skirt. I zip a circle of plastic with a felt backing around the center pole–an umbrella-friendly tablecloth with giant watermelon slices and what might be flip flops–or maybe pineapples?–scattered in glaringly bright colors across the surface. It too flaps frantically whenever the wind tugs it. It is a minor inconvenience. Sitting near the budding maple tree, shaded from the warm sun, drinking a cold beverage, it is probably as close to perfect as a day can get.

There’s only one not-so-small problem. What to do with the kid? Leaving him in the house likely means returning to an even bigger disaster than I already don’t want to face. Bringing his projectile coughing near Grandma runs the risk of making this our last Mother’s Day together. Even though he can wear a mask, it isn’t entirely reliable seeing as he wears one at school and still managed to catch whatever virus he’s got.

My solution? I drag a green bag up from the basement and hastily construct an A-frame tent we used to go camping with when the boy was much much smaller than he is now. There are a few holes and stains in it and the elastic that holds the poles together is stretched out of all helpfulness–but the design is simple perfection. It is the classic triangle tent depicted in all those Beetle Bailey cartoons and the kind we actually used in basic training, though they were made of canvas and not this water-resistant, windbreaker material. (Not washing machine resistant, as I discovered, but that’s another story.) It’s taken a beating, but once all the poles are in place, it holds its shape.

Grandma arrives, carrying a portion of angel food cake baked with pineapple and topped with whipped cream. I grab cans of diet cherry coke and we chat between interruptions from my son. Apparently his participation in this celebration requires him to drag every single one of his stuffed/plush toys and blankets out of the house and into the tent. This is no small task. A parade of Frozen, Paw Patrol, and Trolls character march past stuffed into a mound with his blankets. And then, once that’s done, he asks for lined paper and a popsicle before settling down to write calendars in his mobile green kingdom on the lawn.

Presents are exchanged. My ‘son’ gives me a new set of cornflower blue Rubbermaid food storage containers and Grandma gets a gift certificate to Kay Dee’s Garden–a greenhouse where she can buy a flat of pink and white cosmos to fill the flower pots outside her home. We talk for a while, but mostly we just enjoy the understated beauty of a sunny day with no greater expectations.

This may not be the most exciting Mother’s Day ever recorded, but being outside after weeks of gloomy, wet weather, and enjoying a conversation with my mom is about as close to perfect as these things ever get.

So, to all the other mothers out there who would rather sit and relax on Mother’s Day–I salute you! And I hope that you too enjoy a day being a Good-Enough Mom that might otherwise have been wasted trying to be a Perfect One.

A Close and Uncommon Book

Look, I don’t generally do book reviews on my blog. It just isn’t my thing. But if you’ve missed me at all in the blogosphere, know that it was in pursuit of relearning to love reading and battling my way through painful transitions of my own. This book gives me hope that life is worth living. Maybe you need a reason to keep on going too.

So, I offer to you Becky Chambers’ A Closed and Common Orbit and a link to my Goodreads review.

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/4654661851

But, honestly, I suggest you just read the book instead. Any review is going to be a pale, anemic attempt to recapture the absolute brilliance of Becky Chambers’ writing. It’s actually a travesty that I tried.

WARNING–this is BOOK TWO of a series. You can read it without the preceding work–A LONG WAY TO A SMALL, ANGRY PLANET–but you will deprive yourself of joy and context if you do.

Breaking Bed

It’s TACO TUESDAY every day with my son’s foldable, soft mattress from Talsma’s Furniture.

Just over four years ago, Talsma Furniture sold me a Serta RestoKraft mattress with a five-year warranty. Apparently that warranty only holds true if your mattress has no stains. The fact that my son’s mattress can be folded like a soft taco is immaterial.

I’m vexed, miffed, and annoyed. And I have a blog.

If you want to give me an early birthday present–please share this as frequently and violently as most people share their political rants in an election year. Let the stuffing fly!


#SertaWarrantyFail

#RestoCrap

#TalsmaFurniture

A Tale of Two Lindseys

In a previous post, Another Woman’s Life, we met our intriguing heroine dumpster diving at a Goodwill depot center. (Wait…no… that makes it sound like she was doing the diving when actually I was in the dumpster…Sigh. Go read that post, it makes more sense.)

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Continue reading A Tale of Two Lindseys

What Does Not Kill You…

I know you are all breathlessly waiting for the follow up to last week’s post “Another Woman’s Life–The Sequel,” but I am breathless for an entirely different reason. No sooner had I clicked ‘Publish’ than I came down with a very nasty virus–not Covid, we checked–but honestly, it’s bad enough it deserves it’s own pandemic in my opinion.

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Continue reading What Does Not Kill You…

Another Woman’s Life

I like to go to secondhand stores–places like Goodwill, Mel Trotters, Changing Thymes–this gives me a chance to browse other people’s discarded treasures.

I sometimes post my finds to Facebook–things I find especially funny or ugly or both. But I recently went to a Goodwill depot to dumpster dive and I found something I have never seen before–another woman’s life up for sale. As I write this, I am uncertain of how much I will be allowed to tell you. So, this may turn out to be a bit like the hugely disappointing reveal of Al Capone’s Vault by Geraldo Rivera–a whole lot of nothing wrapped with a pretty bow.

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Continue reading Another Woman’s Life

Wordless

WORDLESS
by Kiri L. K. Salazar
The words hewn from my mind are forced into uncomfortable arrangements. 
Sentences with broken backs and incomplete endings. 
Things that dangle. 
A worrisome focus on grammar and clean lines—syllabication truncated to succinctness. 
When all I want to do is run through words like a child through a field of flowers. 

Wild and untethered, 
I would pluck the verbs that please me best and make of them a bouquet.  Smell the deep earthiness of adjectives that bite the tongue when you speak them. 
Crush the scented mint between lips full of prose.
Using adverbs sparingly so as not to overpower the taste. 
       Slowly. 
               Surely. 
                      And with great pleasure. 
 Carefully measuring synonyms by the spoonful.
 
But harnessing words is tricky business. 
Bringing them through the slip stream of consciousness and pinning them to the page is not unlike stabbing a butterfly after the ether withers them. 
Do they become inert things no longer filled with life?
Pretty facsimiles of something that once breathed?

If words are not my playthings, then what toys do I have left?
How to describe what lurks in the folds of my mind? 
If I cannot use them with abandon, are they orphaned? 
Are they lost forever in a void of never-has-been-ness? 
A not-being that sucks my soul into a black abyss. 

Am I then become wordless?