"Take chances! Make mistakes! Get messy!" --Ms. Frizzle

"Take chances! Make mistakes! Get messy!" --Ms. Frizzle

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Getting Attached

Something's happening. Something I didn't think could happen, and then something I didn't want to happen. But there's no denying it: we've been living in the Yakima Valley for two years now and I am officially Attached. More than simply tolerating life in the valley, I'm finding that I really do like it in a lot of ways. Love it, even. Don't get me wrong, we'll still make our way back to Western Washington one day. It's just that when I think of that day, there's a whole lot of sad mixed in with the happy. I'll actually miss the hot days (although maybe not the really hot days), the exposed rock in the landscape, the vineyards rolling back into the folds of the hills, the cow smell. And for now, I'm content to live here, within walking distance of the places I've now become a "regular," close to friends that I suspect I'll still know when my children have moved away.

I blame the house. How could I not love a place that's my very own, even if it were an absolute hole? I pour my heart into this little haven. It might not always be clean or cool or quiet, but it's where I want to be when I'm someplace else.

I blame Geneva. Her life began here, and everything she touches is saturated by my love for her. When we leave, we leave the door we carried her through on her first day home. We leave the floor where she took eight prancing little steps on the same day we rushed her to the hospital with croup. We leave the ever-mucky windows where she peers out at the world and calls her kitty home. We leave home itself.

I blame the people I adore. We chose to look for work in Yakima because we have family here, and although my idealistic vision of semi-weekly visits is laughable considering we all have young children and busy lives, it has been wonderful to be closer to them. Getting to see Geneva run and play with her cousins (for all intents and purposes) is a joy I don't think will ever get old. And then there are new friends, people whose presence in my life has completely shaped my experience of parenthood so far. When I feel overwhelmed by incompetence or utterly baffled by the creature I call my child, these friends are the ones who gently let me just talk myself sane again. When I experience even the slightest victory, they are there to celebrate with me. And-- coolest of all-- our families are knit together by our babies' fondness for one another.

So you see, I'm Attached.

Beautiful Maya Rose, daughter of our dear friends Allison and Pablo. She is the calm, chill counterpoint to Geneva's excitable nature.

Cousins-- or rather, cousins' kids-- gathered in Harrah for an evening of dinner and slip 'n sliding. From left to right there's Jack, Geneva, Owen, Oliver and Silas. And yes, this is the best photo I got of the whole gang.

Lucas, Geneva and me making cream cheese brownies in the kitchen. Don't worry, the brownie batter didn't turn out purple. That's just paint on the kids' legs.

Sweet Lucas Jose. It's a bummer of a week if I don't get to look after him. He's tenderhearted, and will cry if he sees Geneva crying, but he also has an easy smile. If you give him a cracker, he will turn it into the most disgusting slime-covered turd-looking thing and slowly dribble it down himself... but I can't resist feeding that boy crackers all the same.

Mom and Baby Group was the focal point of my week for a long, long time. It's for kids and their moms from birth to one, but this picture was taken during an informal gathering at the park and a few "graduates," including Geneva, are present. From left to right are the babies (and their moms): Hagan (Rachael), Tillie (Sarah), Jack (Melissa), Geneva (Jamaica), Lauren (Jennifer), Johnny (Andrea), Lillie (Tarah), and Ava (Liz).

Pablo and Allison were kind enough to sneak us into their apartment complex's shindig on National Night Out. To continue the sneaking theme, we slipped Geneva into the bouncy house. She may look tiny and fragile, but don't believe it. She had the best time bouncing with the big kids.

My girl.


  1. This post brought tears to my eyes and so much joy to my heart. Seriously. I LOVE that you have become attached... because I am soooooo glad you guys are here (even if the weekly visits aren't a reality...we love the times we DO get to see you).

  2. P.S. I forgot to mention how much I love the pic of the kids. I think it's awesome how Geneva is sitting there like a beautiful little model and the boys are....well, being boys I guess. :)

  3. What a fantastic post!!! We're so glad you're here, too -- so glad you married Avery, so glad you brought us little Geneva, so glad you put up with all the rough and tumble boys, so glad you were willing to give this humble little town and life a chance. It's not easy moving away from your own hometown, living on one income, or being a stay-at-home mom, but you're doing it all so wonderfully. We love you, all three!