Pa-Jæ-Mas, Pa-Jah-Mas

The kidlet has been taking violin lessons– but to my dismay she calls them fiddle lessons. Sorry, I’m a snob! The first music I fell in love with was classical (well, not really Classical, but the Russian Five, if you must know, and Dvorak and Sibelius), and while I do like to listen to the occasional bluegrass album, the word fiddle gets on my last nerve. I keep calling them violin lessons, she calls them fiddle lessons– I’m trying to let it go, but it’s hard!

When I think of fiddlers, I think of this.

To-may-to or to-mah-to, she’s excited about them and actually practices (!) and the day before yesterday she said, “Tomorrow’s tomorrow is my lesson! I can’t waaaaiiiit!” Any time your kid is that excited about going to a lesson, you have to realize that it doesn’t really matter if it’s a violin or a fiddle, it’s just something she really likes to do. My mother is the one taking her and even paying for the lessons– thank God, since we are so absofreakinglutely broke– and sometimes I can’t tell if the kidlet is excited about the lesson itself, or the fact that Skinny Grandma is taking her. Afterwards, they get Star Chicken (pink slime, I know) at Carl’s Jr or ice cream at Baskin-Robbins.

This is what I think of when I think of violinists. It’s at first glance a rather dismal picture– but imagine the sounds they produce!

That’s what grandmas are for, right? My grandmother used to pick me up from school, and we’d go to the Hot n’ Now on Blackstone and Herndon and get chicken sandwiches. We’d sit in the parking lot and eat covertly, and she’d have a cigarette or two. Or sometimes we’d go to Carl’s Jr and she’d get a Bacon Western Cheeseburger. I don’t even remember what I got there, but I do remember her wolfing down that Bacon Western like nobody’s business! Watching her wolf down food was consistently entertaining. To watch her devour a chicken leg was a thing to behold. She rotated it near her mouth, and the meat just vanished neatly and precisely, leaving only a nibbled clean tendon and the bone. It’s amazing that she wasn’t as big as a house. Nope. She was a tiny little Greek woman! Those tiny women, they’ll surprise you. Especially if you are a chicken leg.

In other news, a few nights ago, the husband was telling me how there’s a friend of his, a bar friend, who thought for a while that I was imaginary because he’d never met me. I am not the main consumer of PBR in this household. I am, however, the primary when it comes to putting the kidlet to bed. The bar-friend found me on Facebook and is now convinced that I may in fact exist, but I have to confess the idea of being imaginary has given me a bit of a roller coaster ride. Should I go out more? Well, yes. But am I going out because I want to– or to prove that I exist? The latter would be unhealthy but apt.

Going out at night always sounds fun, and I admit to being jealous when my husband goes out night after night, hanging out with his friends and getting drunk and toddling home on his bike. But then, our kid wakes up between 5:30 and 7:30 whether she has school or not, whether we have work or not, whether we have been out til the wee hours or not. There is something about parenting that, for me, takes the fun out of going out at night. Now, I’d rather read a book or watch a movie, then go to bed. If the kidlet gets up in the middle of the night (as kids are wont to do) because she has a fever or hears a noise, I want to be able to wake up with her. I can’t wake up with her if I’ve been out until midnight.

And I haven’t even touched upon babysitting and the logistics associated with all of that. It’s just not worth it, most of the time.

Most of the time. I’ve had an offer to go to Pub Quiz, which I love– and it’s at night, but it’s not late, and it’s an actual activity! And another friend wants to go to Art Hop– again, not too late, and an another actual activity. Going out to dinner, a movie, or a bookstore– these are all viable options for me. Going out for the sake of going out and. . . hanging (?) is not really an option. The enjoyment of the activity doesn’t outweigh the cost.

Is this becoming an adult? Or prioritizing? I am not sure. Does it mean that I’ve lost myself to mommyhood? Nope. The primary reason I choose to stay at home is because I’m a parent, sure, but why should my only other option to be myself be at a bar? I may not exist to my husband’s circle of nighttime friends, and ultimately, I’m okay with that– even though I was bothered at first, and it set off a string of little tiny question explosions. I’m happy staying home at night, whether I’m alone or not (although usually it is a solitary state of existence), asleep, or awake until midnight.

And now for something completely different!


We couldn’t decide if we wanted gingerbread or chocolate chip cookies, so we made these. I was aiming for the taste of those a.m.a.z.i.n.g. Bahlsen’s cookies Cost Plus gets every Christmas, because between the kidlet and me, we could eat their entire inventory in minutes. Mere minutes.

Mine don’t really taste quite like this, but they are staving off the hunger just a teensy weensy bit.

1 stick butter

2 T molasses


2/3 c white or brown sugar

2 tsp ginger

1 tsp coriander

1 tsp cinnamon

1/2 tsp cloves

1 capful vanilla extract

1 egg


2 c whole wheat white flour

1 c mini semi sweet chocolate chips, or smashed up regular chocolate chips

1.5 tsp baking soda

( a little water to make drop cookie consistency)

Mixmixmix. Drop by teaspoonfuls onto a greased pan, then bake for 15 minutes in a 350*-375* oven.
That’s it for now, except for three things.

1. Seven hundred thousand people have watched this video, and you should too. It won’t ask you to save baby animals or anything, it’s just neat and about paper and shapes.

2. Maru has some competition. Two kitties, one banana box.
3. And because I’ve fallen behind in my one girl Mikael Simpson Fan Club, here you go:


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