Max the Noble

Naming inanimate objects has always been a hobby of mine. My favorite egg baby in middle school was Hester. I had a dust mop named Jorge in college, and my dwarf mandarin orange tree is named Frida. Most, if not all, of my stuffed animals had names, and now I name Z’s animals. She has a giraffe named Gerald, a penguin named Mr. Penguin (yeah, really stretching the bounds of creativity on that one), and her Duplo person is Guy. Husband named her stuffed cat Talula, and I’m jealous that I didn’t come up with the name.

I also have a clothes hamper named Max. He was  in the garage, on top of the Yard Sale pile, and I’d forgotten about him until yesterday when my friend Kristin visited. “You have an elephant clothes hamper,” she pointed out in wonder. Or horror. One can’t be sure.

Max previously belonged to my Grandma Marion, and I don’t know where she got him, or why. But grandmothers have a way of foisting their strange belongings onto their granddaughters. I still have a garbage sack filled with throw pillows Grandma Myrt started to sew but didn’t want to finish. When I look at the fabric patterns of gigantic, blazing orange peonies and kittens wearing Christmas-patterned ribbons, I have to wonder why she abandoned that particular project.

But back to Max.

I grew so attached to him throughout middle and high school that he came to college with me, and then my first apartment, and to subsequent apartments, until Husband and I got married. Now we (gasp!) shared a clothes hamper, and Max simply wasn’t big enough to contain our filth–especially since said filth collected for between two to four weeks at a time until we made a trip to one of our parents’ houses to do laundry (yes, even when we were married. We have a deep-seated and irrational fear of laundromats). Max was sent back to live with my parents, and we adopted an accordion-style, silvery clothes hamper from IKEA that I have christened Ugly.

When we finally bought our house and our parents brought all of our junk from their garages to our own, Max resurfaced, took a quick breath of fresh air, and then the garage door closed on him for months. (Anybody thinking of The Velveteen Rabbit? ‘Cause I am.) During a purge of old things, Mom finally convinced me to put Max in the Yard Sale Pile: an epic mound of…garbage, basically. But garbage I hope someone will buy, so that I can, in turn, use their money to buy more garbage.

Then Kristin mentioned Max, and I remembered our fond times together. Personified as a faithful friend, he held my dirty clothes for so many years, and now I sell him like the other garbage? I asked Kristin if she needed a clothes hamper, concealing the fact that Max was missing an ear. No, she didn’t need a clothes hamper.

But you know who does?

My daughter.

Max the Noble

Welcome back to the fold, Max.

Poo To Do

I really don’t see how this would be of interest to anyone except myself, but my to-do list (all forms of it updated, categorized, fretted over, and so on, since high school) is on my mind right now, so I think I’ll work with it.

Also, I’m sorry yesterday’s entry didn’t show up until late; I hit the “Save Draft” button instead of the “Schedule [to publish]” button. It’s better than today’s entry, so you could just read that instead. Really.

Poo To Do:

1) read and comment on Ana’s manuscript

2) read and comment on writing for the Sacramento Writers Group (it isn’t posted yet, but since I’m the person who posts them, I can get the head start I desperately need in order to procrastinate until the last minute)

3) rough character sketches for The Black City. Can I please, tonight, NOT get bogged down browsing through 100,001 Baby Names while selecting monikers for my invented people?

4) pick up library books on hold. They haven’t arrived yet, but they should soon. One book I’m especially excited about it Catching Fire, the sequel to The Hunger Games. No, I’m not obsessively checking and re-checking my library account. Nope, I haven’t memorized my 14-digit library account number because I’ve been typing it in so often. No, I didn’t actually pack Z up and take her to the library to investigate my holds status in person.

5) stop lying

6) turn Z’s car seat around so she isn’t scrunched up like a jack-in-the-box during our many trips to the library

7) pick some lettuce to make a salad for dinner tonight. LOVING my mini-garden. I’ll post a picture on Friday.

8 ) replace batteries in sound monitor for Z’s room

9) figure out what to write for blog post tomorrow–I need to compose these in my mind early (you think all this witticism shows up on the fly? Oh, no: “…and though I sometimes amuse myself with suggesting and arranging such little elegant compliments…I always wish to give them as unstudied an air as possible.” -Mr. Collins, Pride and Prejudice)

10) talk to Husband about painting bedroom walls

11) clip back the blackened, frost-killed bush in front of the bathroom window–there’s green in there somewhere–it’ll make it!

12) check, re-check, and check again the Amazon Breakthrough Novel Awards site to see if my novel made the first cut. For the first cut they just read the pitches. You can click here to read mine.

There’s more, of course. But I’ve gotta go, need to check that ABNA site again.

Baby, Let’s Paint the Town Coral Expression

One afternoon a long time ago, Z could not go down for her nap and I could not be around her for one extra second. Luckily for us both, my in-laws were visiting and they happily played with her (dark circles under her eyes and all) so I could get in the car and drive away.

But I had nowhere to go. Mexico, while extremely tempting, was a bit far. As I drove down Main Street I toyed with the idea of treating myself to an ice cream cone. After all, if anyone deserved ice cream to soothe fraught nerves that day, I certainly did. Then I remembered how it was almost as hard to button my jeans as it was to get Z down for a nap. I closed my eyes (while stopped at a stop light, don’t worry) and tried to calm myself with a vision of a great, empty room. (Yes, I’m getting to the “list” part of this entry in a second. Hang on, you impatient minxes.) The room was painted a soothing color…ahh…Rhythmic Blue.

Home Depot beckoned from the horizon (much closer than Mexico), so I went in and browsed the paint swatches. The paint department is a calming place, full of dreams, possibilities, and stir sticks. I took home about fifty colorful pieces of card stock that day. Since then, I’ve returned a few times. I usually stick to the Behr brand, but not for any particular reason. I always exit the store with at least twenty cards clutched in my hand, and I usually come home to find I have duplicates.

Paint Colors I Would Use In My Home (If I Had My Way)

  • Daredevil
  • Bon Voyage
  • Liberty
  • Romantic Isle
  • Rain Drop
  • RHYTHMIC BLUE
  • Purple Essence (or Foxgloves) (or Twilight Pearl)
  • Ballerina Gown
  • Neptune Blue
  • Beach Towel
  • Magic Spell
  • Crowning
  • Lemon Pound Cake
  • Wild Mushroom
  • Pumpkin Toast
  • Aztec Brick
  • Anemone
  • Surfer

My house, with the exception of Z’s room (Celery Sprig), still sports white walls. I’ll get to them someday. Soon. Also, my house doesn’t have this many rooms. Either I’ll have to paint the floors, trim, and kitchen and bathroom fixtures as well, or the colors will have to take turns.