My Fresh Hell
Life in Scribbletown.

Naked Alpacas and Monkey Embraces


Well, I know youíve been at the EDGE OF YOUR SEAT waiting to hear all about alpacas in costumes.

Sadly, when we arrived at the fall festival on Saturday the alpacas were wearing nothing but their own fur. Alas! Alack! Perhaps my sister, who brought a camera with her, had better luck later in the day? Stay tuned.

Regardless, the weather was excellent Ė cool and sunny. Dusty and Red got their goody bags (Dusty ate the candy out of both) and headed for the Baby Hay Maze. The maze was two bales tall Ė the second layer was staggered to create a crenellated effect Ė and no bigger around than 20 feet by 20 feet square.

Red instantly cheated and crawled over the walls pulling up the decorations (wooden bats marking the entrances) rather than going through the maze as man intended. But, Red has always acted outside the box, as it were. She doesnít want The Man to tell her what she can and canít do, where she can and canít go. She sneers at suggestions and laughs in the face of arrows pointing the way. Bats Be Damned!


Both girls did a lot of eating this weekend. It is Monday and we are practically out of food already. They seem to be starving whenever they arenít actually chewing on their fourth breakfast or their twelfth serving of dinner. I am exhausted from being a short order cook and am resting up here at work where I only have to be responsible for feeding my own self. What a relief!

Speaking of food, I made a green tomato cake on Sunday. Yes. I know it sounds disgusting but I had a million green tomatoes left on the vines last weekend and didnít want to waste them if I didnít have to so...I searched for recipes. Nobody, I donít think, in my family will eat something as Southern as fried green tomatoes (god, just typing those words makes me itch. Thanks, Fannie!), but I figured a cake with lots of sugar and walnuts and raisins couldnít be that bad.

And, itís not bad. It just looks kind of horrific with bits of green throughout. Actually, what it looks like is a green pepper cake. Fortunately for me, nobody was all that thrilled about the cake, even though it tastes quite good, so MORE FOR ME! Why, though, do I feel certain nobody will ask me for the recipe?

Dusty and I made muffins later. Just regular spice muffins and Red loved them so much she kept coming into the kitchen demanding ďcakeĒ and grabbing the tops off the muffins she could reach. I kept moving the tin around from one counter to another but she kept at it until I placed it on top of the toaster oven. The muffins, they are battered and bruised. But they are delicious.

Then I made a white bean soup with rosemary oil. Fairly easy when you use canned beans. It will be a cold day in hell (or perhaps one in which I am not the mother of young children and no longer work) when Iíll cook beans from raw again. I have my limits.


Dusty sewed a ďpillowcaseĒ yesterday all by herself. It is a small purse-sized case, maybe twelve inches long by six inches wide. She did a marvelous job and is giving it to her teacher today. Dusty likes to make things and give them away.

My mother thinks I should get out my grandmotherís old sewing machine for her. This is a manual sewing machine and is my nemesis. I keep it around for the ancestor worship but I have no plans to ever use it. If Dusty wants it, she can have it but I wonít be able to help her figure it out. All that threading of thread through loops and things is just...mind bogglingly frustrating. No thanks. The only perk in getting older is knowing my limitations.


Lately, both girls have been pressing their faces, their skin, against mine. Theyíve needed a particular level of physical closeness. At night, as I hold Red in my arms and walk her around, humming my nighttime medley in her darkened room, the glow-in-the-dark stars on the ceiling as our only light, she wraps herself hard around me with arms and legs like a monkey. She presses her cheek against my neck and nestles in tight. When her grip accidentally loosens she grabs again with increased verocity. Pushes her cheek so hard against mine that I probably emerge from her room with a red mark on my face.

Itís nice. Itís nice to wanted at that proximity. At skin level.

Dusty also will lean against me as I read to her and rubs her cheek against whatever piece of skin she can find Ė my neck, my face, my chest, my hand.

They are both going through physical and mental changes Ė their brains are growing, too Ė as proven by their voracious appetites, and Iím glad they are finding the mom-closeness they seek.

Itís always nice to be loved and needed. Iíll miss the hugs and the monkey grips when they are gone.


11:31 a.m. ::
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