Riding the Storm Out

tornadoDark skies loomed in the west as we drove home from camp yesterday. Halfway home, big drops hit the windshield and I switched the wipers from intermittent to fast. The radio was on and I heard the staccato attention signal of the Emergency Broadcast System. I looked at my radio, wondering why it wasn’t issuing a warning. Then I realized the attention signal was coming from my phone. (I know. I’m dating myself here.)

When we got to a red light, I grabbed my phone and looked at the alert. “Tornado Warning in your area,” it said, “Take shelter immediately.”

“Tornado? Shit,” I murmured. We were five minutes from home and I had workmen there waiting for a check. I kept driving. By the time we got home, dark skies cloaked the neighborhood. I gave my six-year-old daughter the house key and told her to get her little brother inside. The workmen were waiting in their truck at the end of my driveway. I went out to talk to them. read more

Getting back on the horse

imagebot (8)When we first got to Maryland, we couldn’t move into our house because we were waiting for our stuff. We stayed with a close friend on her horse farm for a week. Since then, my daughter’s been dying to ride a horse.

My little girl took to the horses right away. Our friend, Elaine, let her come along to feed them, and my daughter couldn’t pet them enough. We couldn’t do a riding lesson while we were there because Elaine didn’t get home until dark, and when she did have time, the weather didn’t cooperate.

We moved out of Elaine’s a month ago and my daughter’s never stopped talking about the horses. So last week I asked Elaine for a riding lesson. We had a scheduling conflict so my daughter had to choose between a trip to her happy place — the American Girl store — and riding. I was shocked when she chose riding. She was psyched. On Saturday morning, we all went to Elaine’s to watch my daughter’s first lesson. read more

Some of all Fears

I’m terrified of bushes. Just the sight of a hedge makes me flit around, looking over my shoulder. Well maybe not so much anymore, but bushes, hedges and pine trees used to scare the leg warmers off me. Every time I passed one, on the other side of the road, of course, I shrunk up my body and got past the threatening landscape feature as fast as I could.

I can thank my mom for the fear of bushes. She always told me that the bushes were where bad people hid and one could jump out at me at any time. Walking around my manicured suburban neighborhood was hell. read more