Wednesday, April 17, 2013


I'm haunted by the house I grew up in. Two dreams in two hours - not the first, certainly not the last.

We walked away from that house when my parents divorced and medical bills forced foreclosure and more. We left the bank to clean up most of our belongings. Slowly we all trickled out, went our separate ways, never looking back.

Now, someone else lives there, in the bedroom where I listened to the birds coo and the train horns blast and the falling rain flow through the gutter. In the hallway where the pets played by day and I sometimes slept at night, too lonely to stay in my bed. Someone else eats in that kitchen, sits on that porch, tends that garden. Maybe they have remodeled, made it the house we never could.

My memories are stuck floating around that house, left to dream about what was or what could have been. Sometimes we're back there as a family; others, it's been abandoned by us, furniture and games and dishes still strewn about, a place we haven't fully left yet but don't care for in the meantime.

Why can't I just move away already, and release the ghost that still follows me 10 years after I took my things and left?

Thursday, April 04, 2013


Porching season is nearly here again. I'm not quite prepared - I was just getting used to winter. But now I can leave the porch door open so the fresh air can flow in and Dear Kitty can come and go as she pleases. This means it's gardening time again. The bulbs I planted in the fall are sprouting and the perennials I planted last summer have returned. Rather than attempt a vegetable garden in the ground again, I decided on attractive vegetable pots on the porch that play dual roles as food and decor. Cucumbers, tomatoes, sugar snap peas in tall pots. Rainbow chard, red Russian kale, mesclun mix, and spinach in wide bowls. Carrots, red oak lettuce, parsley, and basil in their own pots. Broccoli and arugula in long flower boxes. All from seed. This is the year I finally have a substantial harvest. I can feel it. I think it's important to start plants from seeds, because its important to know what the seeds look like, especially if they're not visible in the plant. Who knew that spinach and chard seeds were so big? Or that carrot and parsley seeds look similar? Cool stuff.

While I await my porch garden bounty, I'm training for a half marathon. Last weekend, I was really dragging and doubtful that I would make enough progress in the next month to get through the race. Then I had a massage and a big plate of pasta and turned out a 9-mile run yesterday. It was fabulous. The thing with running longer distances is that at some point, momentum takes over and it's easier to keep running. Until the blisters remind you that you're mortal, anyway.
So, spring is returning, with less frantic energy than last year, now that I'm comfortable and settled in. This summer will be hectic enough with the France trip, the wedding, the baby, and surely plenty of camping trips. And as much porching as I can possibly handle.