Ahh, sleep….so coveted by parents and so scorned by children everywhere.  It’s a trifecta of misery – kids don’t want to go to bed, don’t want to stay in their bed, and on school mornings, don’t want to get out of bed.  Weekends, of course, they’re up at the crack of dawn.  With three kids and a bed-hopping Labrador, my house is like a 24-hour motel with people checking in and out of rooms all night long and I am the manager that is never off duty.

Nightmares are the issue of the moment around here.  When I was a kid, I had a recurring dream about my dad and I being eaten by a shark (thank you, “Jaws”).  I remember waking up and running as fast as I could into my parents room scaring them half to death as I took a running leap into the middle of their bed.  Well, let me tell you, 1970’s parents were not the pushover parents of today…they did not run out and buy a parenting book on how to deal with this.  No, my parents didn’t mess around – about two nights of those shenanigans and their bedroom door was subsequently closed and locked.  I would then sleep on the floor in the hallway outside their door, vowing to never lock a child of MINE out when I was a mom.  Fast forward 35 years and I have kept that promise, for better or worse.  Mostly worse.

And there lies the inspiration for today’s post.  My mom recently purchased the Disney soundtrack of “Frozen” for my 5 year old, which was the best and worst gift ever.  It was the best because it has been loved and listened to incessantly and the worst because it’s like a virus of songs that infect your brain and I have yet to find the cure.  The mother of all catchy songs on the album is “Let it Go” and the other night, while struggling to get my youngest to bed, I started to sing “Go to Bed” to the tune of the song.   The kids started laughing so I decided to re-write the rest of the lyrics as well.  So here is my first-ever parody….”Go to Bed”, sung to the tune of “Let it Go”.  And by sung I mean imagine me singing in your head because you do NOT want to hear me actually attempt to sing that song.  Trust me, I tried.  There’s a fine line between funny and “Oh my God, I would rather be getting a root canal than have to listen to her for one more second.”  A line I was too chickenshit to cross.  Hey, I’m a writer, not a performer…gimme a break.

UPDATE:  I wrote the above post a couple of weeks ago, ready to post my lyrics with a few photos on a slideshow…about as technical as I get.  My very creative 11 year old son, however, convinced me that it would be way better if I let him make a video for the song.  Since then he has worked tirelessly creating, filming, editing and then even singing it himself when no one else was brave enough to even touch that song.  So a huge thanks to Jack…I hope Steven Spielberg will someday pay you more than $20 and some cookies.


_MG_3797“Oh, that’s a pretty flower over there…” has been the extent of my involvement in the world of gardening to date.  I’ve always sort of wanted to grow stuff but was never motivated enough with a small yard, clay soil and having to be outside in the hot California sun.  But moving to this rural island in the Pacific Northwest it became evident fairly quickly that my lackadaisical attitude towards gardening was not going to cut it.  There may not be a mall or a Target here, but boy are there gardens.  And people here know their stuff, let me tell you….they grow vegetables I’ve never even heard of, have animated discussions at the grocery store about this herb or that.  And my city slicker ignorance of all things nature has reared its head more than once…and I’m not even from the city, for God’s sake.

I’ll give you an example.  New friends of ours here on the island gave us a huge bag of tulip bulbs to plant last November.  With an acre of land to work with now, I was super excited at the thought of growing tulips and checked my front yard frequently after planting them for signs of life.   It took a few months, but finally green stems started to pop up.  I began watching my tulips obsessively, checking their progress each day.  The minute the first one bloomed I was there, camera in hand, so proud of my beautiful yellow tulip.

I immediately shot off an email to my friends who gave me the bulbs with a photo of the tulip attached.  Shortly after, I received a response from my friend, who I’m sure was quite amused, congratulating me on…..my daffodilYup, after all that watching and waiting and telling everyone about the tulip garden I was growing, turns out I can’t tell a freakin tulip from a daffodil.

So this past weekend, in fear of being exiled off this island, we drove out to the Skagit Valley Tulip Festival in Mt. Vernon, Washington for a little education.  In addition to seeing spectacular scenery, I can now identify 47 different varieties of tulips.  Well, that’s a lie…but it sure was pretty!

I’ve since become inspired by my not-tulip daffodils and by the actual tulips that came up shortly after.  I’m buying seeds and flowers and plants, got myself a decent pair of gardening gloves.  So if you’re ever passing by my house on Bainbridge Island, you may very well find me in the front yard, admiring my garden and watching and waiting for my peonies to come up….I think.


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