Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Good for the soul

... I'm your only friend
I'm not your only friend
But I'm a little glowing friend
But really I'm not actually your friend
But I am

There's a picture opposite me
Of my primitive ancestry
Which stood on rocky shores and kept the beaches shipwreck free
Though I respect that a lot
I'd be fired if that were my job
After killing jason off and countless screaming argonauts
Bluebird of friendliness
Like guardian angels it's always near

Blue canary in the outlet by the light switch
Who watches over you
Make a little birdhouse in your soul
Not to put too fine a point on it
Say I'm the only bee in your bonnet
Make a little birdhouse in your soul

(and while you're at it
Keep the nightlight on inside the
Birdhouse in your soul) ...


As an ineffective parent, I often find myself giving in to whims. When she asks me at the end of the workday, when I pick her up from Amah and Papa's house, what I've brought for her, a part of me winces that by having little gifts on hand I'm in effect buying her affections with incidental trinkets. The other part of me is just happy I had received a package containing a press release and decorator paints from a local vendor, which I happened to take home that evening, so I could get her to leave the grandparents and go home without tears. (Bribery works wonders for getting wriggling kids into carseats.)


I buy lots of junk we don't need under the auspices of filling up a craft box with activities we can do on rainy days (or when the whining gets to be more than I can handle). And most recently, as preparation for maternity leave when I'll have to find ways of entertaining the little munchkin without turning her into a television junky, I've been stocking up like there's going to be an armageddon.

I find all kinds of things in the aisles of dollar stores: foam shapes, paper, paints, pens, gluesticks even car washing mitts that I imagine with a few buttons sewn on may make interesting little handpuppets. (You know my skill with such things is craptacular.) I stuff them in a box and drag them out when the mood strikes, usually just about half past when all else fails.

I was delighted recently to find unfinished wooden birdhouses at the junk shop, and thought it would make a good project for painting. No only would it require no skill (on my part) but it would look nice and make lovely grandparent gifts.

Of course, because weekdays consist of all the fun of forcing her her to get ready for "school" or get set for "bed," I thought we'd be doing our craft on the weekend -- the designated mommy and daddy fun days.

At 9:30 on a Tuesday night, when she should have been in bed, it might have been wise NOT to show her the birdhouse or let her see the payola paints. But it wouldn't have been as good for the soul.


Anonymous said...

Ah, I love They Might Be Giants! What a nice surprise! Thank you for brightening my day!

- a lurking mom of 2 boys (.5 & 2.5)

Lauren said...

I always wondered what one of the lines to this song was and googled that it was "Fillibuster vigilantly".

Anabel is so sweet. I think I say that after every post. Because she is.

mamatulip said...

No, it wouldn't have. :)

Mrs. Chicken said...

nothing tastes as sweet as a broken rule.

tracey said...

Those photos are magic.

stefanierj said...

I would need the medium of interpretive dance to tell you how much I needed to be reminded of that song--and these precious stolen nite-time moments--today.