A Big Deal (That Fizzled): Today M took the bus to the end of the line in City where she met me (coming in from East Coast Big City) to shop for beads for her Egypt project. She has taken the bus home from City once, but that time her grandmother put her on the bus, and our bus stop is half a block from home. This was big time independent traveling, and she aced it. Unfortunately, the bead store was closed. But we did get ice cream next door. And then we remembered that there is a bead store at the other end of Town. So we took the bus home, got in the car, and got the beads.
A Horticultural Marvel: I have kept a cyclamen alive for a month. It even has new blossoms. If you know me well, you are amazed. If you don't know me well enough to be amazed, I will just tell you that this is the only live plant in our home, and there has not been a live plant in our home for several years, and you should be amazed.
A New Policy: E's complaints that I work all the time are registering. I don't want my kids to feel that way, and I don't want to be that way. While I feel that the impression has already been impressed (and is not precisely accurate, not that that matters), I have decided to try not to work while I'm with them in the afternoon and evening, not even to check my email. Given that I could work from the moment I wake up till the (late) moment I go to bed, this is probably as good for me as it is for them. Today I made dinner, read the paper, cleaned the kitchen, knitted, supervised and assisted with homework, and discussed various school and life issues. It was very pleasant for all, and I hope to maintain the practice.
A New Means of Self-Deprecation: One of the many ways I constantly compare myself with others (and generally come up lacking) is by looking at accomplishment relative to age. I have accepted that I will no longer be a child prodigy or a twentysomething phenomenon, and I know that Dave Eggers, Scarlett Johannson, and Venus Williams have it all over me. But when I realized that Obama was 46, I felt, once again, like a failure. And then I discovered this. Some other things I have not done by my age are discover Uranus, receive my second Nobel prize, pitch a no-hitter, and go over a waterfall in a barrel. I am singularly unimpressed with myself.