The day is here,
The people pass,
Hurrying down the shore.
There are sights to see,
Things to do,
Always hungry for more.
Look for dolphins,
Look for boats,
Some must exercise.
But urgency is not for you,
Patient bird with yellow eyes.
You calmly watch the gentle waves
And rarely even move.
The world goes on,
Hardly noticing you.
Yet something beckons me to pause,
Admire your intricate design.
I take a deep and cleansing breath
As people keep passing you by.
I think I’ll sit here for a few,
Reflect and learn from the watcher.
There’s something strangely magical,
watching you, watching the water.
~Sarah Elle Emm
I’ve been away from my blog for a bit, and let me tell you I’ve got some excuses. 😉 I’ve been in ‘book promotion land’ for about one month now, heavily promoting my books on Kindle as the three of them are on sale. I’ve been writing, which means at any given time, I’m having a “conversation” with one to five extra voices in my head if you know what I mean. But mainly, I’ve been keeping up with my darling pirate children. (I am a chef’s wife, so keeping up with children is different for me than for some moms out there. No offense intended for anyone. If you need further clarification regarding this issue, simply Google the words ‘chef’s wife’ and a plethora of reading material with everything from the blog ‘Desperate Chefs’ Wives’ to support groups for them will come up. There is even the site called the ‘Chef’s Widow,’ which to clarify is not referring to a woman married to a man who has passed away. You get the picture. And our children…well, let’s just say you’ve got to keep an eye, or twenty, on them.
What are they like? Do you remember that eighties flick, GREMLINS, where you can’t get them wet or feed them after midnight or they’ll turn from cute little fuzzy creatures into monsters? 😉 Yeah, the main difference is that mine ‘change’ earlier in the evening. When we’re at the grocery store, strangers typically say something like: “They sure have lots of energy.” Yes. Yes, they do. And they hate the idea of their mother sleeping. The eldest thinks she needs to stay up two hours past her bedtime with me every single night. “Sleep is the worst thing in the world!” she says as she turns cartwheels beside my desk. The youngest thinks that between 2 and 4:30 a.m. is a grand time to wake-up. “Mommy, it’s morning!” she says. While technically, she is correct, I can’t handle that hour and oh so sweetly tell her to go back to bed. But like clockwork, she’s there, between 2:30 and 4:30.
The youngest pirate’s three favorite items in our house are my black PERMANENT Sharpie marker, a roll of packing tape, and glue. She also claims she is an artist, (at five I have to admire her for already having this figured out), and as you can imagine with the Sharpie, in particular being the first thing she finds in the morning, I never know what creation of hers I am going to discover. Or how long it is going to take me to remove it from the wall. Recently, she took empty paper towel rolls and decorated them as Santa Claus miniatures and hung them with glue and string to the bedroom wall. I’m still trying to figure out where she got the string from or what shirt of mine is missing that could have produced said string.
My sister quite regularly asks me over the phone, “What is happening at your house?” because the noise is so loud. The other day I had to lock myself in the closest so I could take a phone call. I’m sorry, but I hadn’t talked to my friend who called me in over three months, and I wasn’t letting anything get in the way of our conversation. A few days later, the youngest was chanting. Yep, there really isn’t another way to describe it. She was repeating some strange sound over and over as I combed her hair and though I asked her to quiet down a little, the louder she got until I exclaimed, “I feel like I’m in the crazy house!” This was immediately followed by a voice, (my eldest- at least I’m hoping it was her) in the other room announcing, “You ARE in the crazy house!”
A few days ago my five-year-old called from behind me in the hallway, “Wow, Mommy your butt is SO big.” If you ever visited my old blog site, you might realize these are the same words that my seven-year-old said to me when she was four, which prompted the launch of “My Name is Sarah,” my first blog. As the words of my second born registered, a million thoughts flashed through my already heavily trafficked mind. Now, the second one is saying this? Thank the Lord we stopped at two. I slowly turned around, calculating my response and how I was going to handle her latest observation only to discover she was peering at me through a magnifying glass.
Anywho, that’s what I’ve been doing… Welcome to my life. 🙂
Do I have any other excuses for my extended absence? What else have I been up to? Oh, you want wildlife photos? No more glimpses into mommy world? Okay, fine. Thanks for listening. 😉 Well, this brings me to today’s photos… Recently, I attended a Book Festival in Matlacha Park, in Matlacha, a tiny island on the way to Pine Island, Florida. I told myself I would wait until the day was over before going after any wildlife photos, but…well…that just didn’t work out for me. I was one of sixty Florida authors in attendance but probably the only one who abandoned my table over and over to take photographs of birds. I’m cool like that. A rebel without a cause. Probably where the pirates get it from. It was a windy, unusually chilly Florida day, but I sold some books, met some amazing authors and readers, Chef Charles took the morning off to watch the pirates, and I got to chase birds. (Finally, some photos for my lonely, ol’ neglected blog.) 🙂
I’m walking my dog this morning when I spot a snake-not this one- slithering from the garbage can on the side of the house into the neighbor’s yard. “Ahhhh…” I moan.
‘Get Shorty,’ our recently adopted baby probably wonders what is up. “Sorry, Shorty, I need to get my camera,” I explain as I pull her inside the house in a frenzy. Get Shorty, aka Shorty, came with the name, and being the issue sensitive people that we are, we didn’t want to confuse her by changing her name. But of course, certain relatives of MINE think it’s degrading to call a dog Shorty and insist on calling her Shortcake… because it sounds ‘cuter.’ Long story short, I call the poor pup everything from Shortstop to Shortcake to Sabrina these days. (Sabrina is my youngest child.) If the dog didn’t have issues when she arrived here, I’m sure she’s got them now. And she has probably never seen a person chase after a snake with a camera before either.
I unleash Shorty and grab my camera, telling the kids about the snake. They are excited. “Get a good picture, Mommy!” they cheer after me encouragingly.
Camera in hand, vowing to walk Shorty as soon as I get back, I tiptoe towards the neighbor’s yard but, suddenly I hesitate. Do I really want to add ‘mother arrested for trespassing’ to the list of issues my own children might have?
No, I don’t…so I give up, going back inside.
“Did you get a picture of the snake, Mommy?”
“No,” I admit.
“Oh, too bad,” my oldest seems disappointed.
Minutes later, I’m pacing the kitchen floor, sharing my children’s disappointment, so bummed I didn’t get a photo of the snake. What kind of woman am I? I can’t even trespass? I’m such a chicken. The need to succeed overwhelms me…
I decide to investigate in my own back yard. Forget the neighbor’s place. This is Florida, the land of all things wild and reptilian. Surely, at this early morning hour I might catch a snake hunting.
“This is a wild goose chase,” I mumble as I walk through the patio door. But I stand still for about sixty seconds in the middle of the yard, scanning my surroundings like a cat stalking it’s prey…and that’s when I spot this black racer! Yippee!
I move ever so slowly, but not slowly enough, because the racer immediately lifts it’s head to look at me. I hold my breath, and snap, snap, snap, I get a photo that will work. “Yes!” I proclaim victoriously. The racer waits patiently for my happy dance, and I inform him quite cheerfully, “You’re going to be on my blog!”
Seemingly under-enthused- if you ask me- about this piece of information, the racer goes on it’s way, away from me…and I return to my house.
My children are bouncing off the walls with anticipation. “Did you get a photo, Mommy?”
Proudly, I look them in the eyes and nod my head. “Yes. I. did.”
Cheers of jubilation erupt throughout my home. My children are so proud of their brave, non-venomous snake chasing mother, and I’m sure the triumph of this day will circulate among internet circles for days to come…
My husband, as usual, seems concerned with my wildlife fascination, but kisses me goodbye before he leaves for work. And Shorty, Shortcake, Shortstop, Sabrina-whatever you want to call her- is excited to resume her morning walk. And as we walk, I must say, I think she holds her head a little higher. She’s starting to appear proud to be a member of this issue-packed group of humans.
Of course, now that I’m typing this blog, it would appear today’s excitement has wiped poor Shorty out…