Friday, May 25, 2012

You get what you get and you don't get upset. On second thought, scrap that.

It's Friday, let's do this. I haven't posted for a few days and I just spent the last twenty minutes crafting a depressing post about something or other, but I scrapped it in favour of not being a downer at the start of what could be a wonderful weekend! Who wants to read a sad post about how lonely it is to grocery shop at ten o'clock at night? Not me. I'm depressed just thinking about that post.

Instead I thought I'd share some photos from our day at the Royal Ontario Museum this week. Alyce had an appointment in Toronto Tuesday afternoon, so we all headed to the city with Matt in the morning (since we only have the one car) and me and the girls needed something fun to keep us busy. A museum! I miss the Philadelphia Please Touch Children's Museum so much (so much), and I've been grieving its absence for a year now. The ROM, while no Please Touch, was everything Alyce and Shira needed. Its hands-on, discovery exhibitions kept the three of us busy for hours. We dressed up as queens (Alyce), knights (Shira), dragons (me and Alyce), butterflies (Alyce and Shira). We dug up dinosaur bones. We watched bees make honey and fish swim. It was a good day.

The depressing post-that-almost-was has gotten me to thinking about what I want this blog to be. I've been writing and posting for a year and half now, using this blog as venue for conservations about parenting, breastfeeding, eating, baking, being married, leaving graduate school, and starting over. I've urgently pointed you in the direction of so many of my favourite recipes that I've had friends suggest that I might need a food-related intervention. (By the way, no intervention needed. What I could really use is this cookbook. And maybe this one, too.)

Everything lately feels so out place. And I mean everything. When I wrote about having lost my sparkle I think I was on to something. It's a serious claim, to have lost one's sparkle, but I've given it a lot of thought, and yes, I'm a bit dull. Subdued, maybe. Holding myself back. Spending the day in the city with my girls, however, made me feel a bit shiny. Since we'll be moving to Toronto in five weeks I'm going to go ahead and say right now that I'm completely over-the-moon-excited to start fresh in the city. This move will mean a lot of things: that we have are both employed, we will have our own space, and that we'll all be starting something new. The move feels like one enormous opportunity to sparkle again.

But. I think we're often too quick to look beyond the opportunity that is already sitting right in front of us, right here in the actual present instead of five weeks into the future. So I will not wait five weeks to brighten up. I will start now. A very wise woman suggested the other day that you won't get what you want unless you know what you want. This piece of advice makes me think of Alyce, who repeats on a daily basis something she learned at school this year: You get what you get and don't get upset. At first I loved this lesson of hers, something to help her to manage her four-year-old disappointed feelings when such tragedies occur as not getting the pink plate at breakfast, or having to eat a cookie without chocolate chips. But no, no, no. This is truly terrible advice. I will get upset, thank you very much, and I'll channel my own disappointment into something good for this year. For many, many years.

When I read Helen Jane's advice I was both relieved to realize that yes, of course, I need to figure out what I want if I want that sparkle back, and exhausted by the knowledge that this is going to take some work to figure out. Thank goodness I like lists so much already. Next week is devoted to making lists in attempt to bring some of that good focus to my life. Less complaining, more sparkle. Vibrant, even. Lucky for you (maybe) this blog is just the place to figure this all out, a good place to find some of that focus I've been craving. That, and also what I'm going to cook this week. No matter how I envision my blog and my writing, I just can't leave out food. It is simply too important a detail to ignore.

Our day at the museum did more for my motivation than anything has in ages. I can't tell you why or how, but I can tell you that it felt good. I can also tell you that it felt good enough that we're getting a family membership.

P.S. Stay tuned for another interview this coming Monday! I'll give you hint: he's devastatingly handsome, has two daughters, and he's my husband. Tune in Monday to see if you've guessed right!


  1. I can relate to this missing sparkle you speak of. I look forward to reading your journey in finding it again, I love lists too so I'll do it with you!

  2. Aren't lists the greatest? I hope you make some, too. This one has already been very useful to me.