Friday, January 17, 2020


How ridiculously packed was this day? So packed that I am three pages from the end of a book I love, and I'm insanely curious about the ending, and yet I have not had the time to finish the damn thing.

No one wants to hear details of another person's busy day. One person's "busy" is another person's boring. So, just the highlights of "boring:"

The animals:
I was troubled to see Dance -- our noble girl who gave birth at the age of six months and yet knew to take care of not only her own brood, but also her half-sibs that her mom had left behind. She is our friend. She likes us and tries hard not to be afraid.

But she is sick. This morning, she came out of the lair we have set up on the porch just for a second, meowed, allowed me to pet her, then went back inside. She hasn't eaten for days.

Ed and I conclude that she should be seen by a vet. We so want her to survive this. It should be easy: close the "lair," take her in. Except that the door gets tangled up and in our struggle to release it, she senses entrapment and escapes. So no vet. (She returns later in the day. If she's not better tomorrow, we'll try again.)

Lovely. No problem here.

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My mom:
Lots of issues today. Several hours of conversation. With her, with her county case worker, with the government agency processing her application for long term care. And with Ed, who truly believes I need to read more and learn more before I make the final decision as to which agency to work with going forward and which program best suits her needs. (I myself think I've done my homework, but Ed always find details that require further investigation.)

And there you have it. I am still hanging on the phone over mom care issues as I walk up the stairs to pick up Snowdrop. Fridays are "just Snowdrop" days. The little girl tells me -- you're late! I'm not really late, but on other days, I'm early. Today, I'm not early.

I let the little girl take the lead on our Fridays together. Without Sparrow here, she has free reign. It's a good day to really make progress on our chapter book. But she wants to break away from the predictable. Instead, we read many, many picture books, most --  a trip down memory lane. Things she liked as a three or four year old. I realize that this is the true marker of the passage of time: when your grandchild starts being sentimental on you and wants you to reread books that belong to her "younger years."

As we finish reading, the snow storm sets in. We need to go soon -- I tell her. But I want to work on a book!

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She works on a book.

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She has to show Ed her book.

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We drive home in a snowstorm. Is it a blizzard? -- Snowdrop asks. Hmmm... what's the difference between a snowstorm and a blizzard? Trust Snowdrop to ask the difficult questions.

It takes three times as long as usual to get her home and four times as long to drive back to the farmette. I use the time to review everything by phone with my mom. I know, there's snow. But we're all crawling on the roads at a snail's pace.

Finally. I'm at the farmette again. The snow hits us from all sides. It's a drifting blowing sleeting pounding kind of event. The worst of the worst. And, there's old ice under the snow. Snowdrop fell twice on her way from the car to house. Never mind. We're all safely in our homes! At the farmhouse, I cook up a big pot of chili. Dinner is very late, but very warm and comforting!

No, not done yet!

My mom is letting go of most of her bulky furnishings, including the two dressers she has acquired in Madison. One of them is a solid piece of wood and I want to swap it out with the cheap dresser I have at the farmhouse. Well, ours may be cheap, but it's heavy. We've listed it on Craigslist and we have a buyer. Near midnight, I empty it out, Ed takes apart the drawers, and we haul it downstairs for a viewing tomorrow.

I know, boring, right? Except in doing this, we want to move some Goodwill boxes into the car. It's getting too crowded with mom stuff in our mud room. Ed puts on his jacket. I shout out -- wait! Let me shovel the walkway first! If you trample it down, it'll be harder to clear tomorrow!

And so I shovel away the beautiful snow that fell all evening long. Light and fluffy. A bit windblown, but crystal clean and white. It is what makes for sublime winters here, in the Upper Midwest. Tomorrow, we'll have to find time to simply play in it. For sure.