Good intentions. Also, a new project

Well, once again, summer has arrived in all the sticky, bug-bitten, green glory its renowned for. I was driving back from a visit to my parent’s house in the Fond du lac area the other night, passing wheat fields just about to turn yellow, and the moon was full, the sky was hazy and lavender-colored, and I felt that deep settling in my chest, the one that confirms I probably never want to live anywhere but here. Midwest is best.

I had the best intentions to blog more over winter break. I also had intentions to find a part-time horticulture job this summer. I did neither. Winter break was simply laziness, and also I spent a lot of time shooting rubber bands out the bathroom window at the squirrels ravaging the bird feeder. Remaining exclusively mom-employed this summer was a bit more complex. My main motivation for working at all was to gain experience, so that when I actually do return to work full-time after graduation, I would have something substantial on my resume. But if I’m working, and Jason’s working, then that means someone else is working to take care of Finn, and that costs money. So, I really wanted my part-time-summer-job-for-the-sake-of-experience to count. I applied for a few through the county, a couple of internships, and promptly failed to follow up with the employers as I so kindly mentioned I would in my cover letter. That was part of the problem. The other part was my difference in attitude this summer versus last. Being home full-time with Finn was difficult last year. We were just starting to figure out sleep routines, regular meals, crawling, communication, etc, etc, and also, I wasn’t sleeping well, and also she needed to be carried/held/touched constantly, and as an overtired introvert, I struggled.

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Please don’t misunderstand me. I love my child unfathomably, but I was never a woman who had aspirations to be a stay-at-home mom. A very good balance for us has been being home together part-time. I found myself looking forward to the fifteen or so hours a week she would be in daycare when classes started up again in the fall. And when those hours came, they were nice. Spring semester was also nice. And while I recognize working part-time over the summer in a career I know I enjoy would have also been nice…I’m handling the excess time with her in a much healthier way this year. She’s mobile and communicative. She takes regular naps, she sleeps through almost every night, and she eats three meals a day that don’t come by way of my boobs. In short, we’re both able to have more space, yet still enjoy each other’s company. She’s growing up, and I’m growing older and more accepting of some of the challenges that lumber alongside being a mother.

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So, no job. I don’t know yet what’s going to happen after graduation next summer, and I’m really just trying to focus on enjoying this year with her, knowing we might not have as much time together in years to come.

To keep some sense of outside activities in both our lives, we’re embarking on a project that I’ve had rattling about in my head for some time. Now that Finn is old enough to enjoy playgrounds, I thought it would be interesting to explore and document various parks and play areas throughout the city, focusing on highlighting some of the differences (if they exist) between playgrounds in more affluent areas and playgrounds in areas where poverty is more of a reality. This will get us out and interacting with other people, it will challenge me to introduce my child to different demographics and neighborhoods, and it will give me and excuse (read: obligation) to blog regularly. We already started this past weekend, and I’ll have the post up sometime this week.

Also, I’m taking two summer courses. Also, I’m still editing that novel (FINAL FINAL EDIT I SWEAR! LIKE PASTING INTO THE PUBLISHING FORMAT FINAL!). Also, I’m still going to blog about gardening and horticulture-nerd-plant-soil-chemistry-stuff because my quarter-aged mind is simply brimming with all I’ve learned this past spring semester and I know you all want to hear about the pH of rainwater and the symbiotic relationships between mycorrhizae and plant roots, and how it can affect phosphorus uptake. In other words, I will do my best to blog regularly, but I should also do my best to be realistic.

In the meantime, here’s a picture of a cute thing I made. It’s a kid:

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