Blogger Blues Part 2

My son refuses to let me take that many pictures of him now that he’s nine. But I thought I’d show you him in action at around the age of two, in the throes of paper shredder heaven. He was fantastic at creating a huge mess. I used my vacuum so much that year it exploded into flames.

My son was beyond proud of his first book he made at school. The moment I saw his cover page I thought the title was definitely an attention-grabber. I was immediately hooked.  I also loved his characters’ names: Freckle and Wrinkle. But then I saw down near the bottom was a dark drawing of a person he named ‘Momma Mean’.  It felt like I had been punched in the gut. Until he told me this was a group project and his partner Cooper came up with Momma Mean. Whew! Dodged that years-of-Mommy-guilt bullet!

My son and I had another deep conversation yesterday while riding home from school. “Mom, do you know what the most important thing in the world is?” he asked from the back seat.

“Love!” I yelled without hesitation. “It’s love. It’s the most powerful thing in life.”


“Uh, no, ” he said. “It’s not love. Actually, it’s trees. Because without trees we wouldn’t have oxygen on the planet. And without oxygen, we’d all be dead because we couldn’t breathe for even one second. So you are wrong, Mom, it’s trees.”

I was reading my daughter a book the other night when she gasped and pointed at the page. “Look, Mom! It’s an ellipsis!”

“Huh? It’s a what?” I asked, squinting at the page.

“Ellipsis! Right there, it’s dot-dot-dot! Mrs. O’Connell told us!”

She’s in preschool. I don’t think I knew what an ellipsis was until yesterday. What in the world are they teaching my kids at this school?


So I am in the middle of a bad bad bad writer’s block. So bad it’s triple the bad. I took Georgette’s and Fraha’s idea of using photos this week. It was fun, took the pressure off of coming up with ideas, so thank you, guys.


60 thoughts on “Blogger Blues Part 2

  1. Kids– so profound! Last week I learned that Caillou was more important than loving and learning. Today I learned that trees trump all! Here’s my next question, then: are trees also more important than Caillou?

    1. Good question. I think my son would say ‘definitely’ and my daughter would burst into tears. She’s very protective of Caillou.

      I love the ages my kids are right now because they tell it like it is. Very wise. I hear when they hit the teen years they will also tell it like it is but by then I won’t want to hear it.

  2. I think this is a wonderful post. Don’t be so hard on yourself. How funny that your 9-year-old avoids the camera and mine jumps in front of it demanding pictures (although never with a decent smile, always a goofy one).


    1. Thanks, Lisa. I know my daughter loves to have her picture taken and I bet she will once she’s your daughter’s age. by the way, she looks beautiful in those pictures you posted, happy birthday to her!

      My son avoids camera, hugs, kisses…it’s all so sad for this mom. He’s such a sweet boy too so I miss that cuddly side of him.

  3. I’m in complete agreement with your son. Definitely TREES!! Brilliant post. Brilliant artistry. Enjoyed the peek into your motherhood. I barely get pictures of my 10-yr-old anymore. He’s quite camera shy, and when I can get one of him, he’s hanging out in his underwear (boxers). Shoulder shots only. Sheesh.

  4. I stopped by to see if your mood improved, and see all these great pictures and cute stuff your kids said have inspired you – good for you!

    Am I reading that title page correctly that Hansel and Grettel are in the “evil” category? When you think about it, eating the roof right off the home of a poor, defenceless, little, old (witch) lady, is pretty rude.

    1. My kids always get me into a better mood. They truly make my day every day with their questions, their answers, their giggling fits and hugs and kisses (well, my son will hug his sister more than me but that’s okay)

      He told me Joe, Joan, and John are good, the rest are evil. Makes total sense. Wrinkles are definitely evil. He did all the drawings and all the names, the title himself. His friend Cooper came up with Momma Mean. Hmm…I hope my son wasn’t just saying that to make me feel better! haha!

  5. OMG! I was going to say the EXACT same thing in an upcoming post – that I’ve been using pictures for posts lately because I think I’m having writer’s block!

    BUT, I don’t think the same can be said for you, because you are still prolific and hilarious, AND your pictures speak volumes. You are really an amazing photographer (I thought the same thing when you sent the slap bracelet pics)! What kind of camera do you have???

    1. Did you notice the one above with my daughter holding the chipmunks? I posted that one specifically for you. 😀 (she loves the chipmunks so much she never goes anywhere without at least one)

      I use a Canon xsi, with a 50 mm lens I bought separate. I have no clue what I’m doing with the camera, but it’s fun. I tend to take about a thousand pics so that at least one will turn out okay.

      This writer’s block thing is something. I normally have a few posts going in my draft folder but right now it’s empty. Much like my head. Think I’m in a zen kinda mood lately. I have to admit it feels good. Just wondering when I’ll get an idea again, if ever. ha!

  6. Those are some darn cute kiddos! Just post about them for a while .. you’ll be all right. Go sleuth around and find a quote that sounds stupid .. or profound .. or nonsensical. That’s what I do ..

    “So you are wrong, Mom, it’s trees.” — had to laugh at that one. Out of the mouths of babes!

    PS I meant to say sooner, liking the new Gravatar photo. Doesn’t that sound like an action Hero name? Gravatarrrrrrrrrrr … grr!
    🙂 MJ

    1. Ooh, I like your idea, MJ. I need some inspiration so that would do it.

      Gravatar does sound like a superhero! My gravatar is super magic in that I used my webcam because it miraculously erases all wrinkles with its fuzziness.

  7. Really, those black and whites, especially the first one of your daughter, are stunning. I’m glad you took time out and showed us your picture files. And really, algea is super-important too.

    1. Thanks, Spectra! My daughter is a born dancer. She lives to dance. Always twirling, boogying around the house. Plus she enjoys posing for the camera so I can get a good picture. My son is a nonstop blur so it’s hopeless getting him to stand still.

  8. Snoring Dog Studio

    And next week she’ll be learning all about the em dash. Oh, dear gawd. No wonder the world is at war.

    Your kids are adorable but of course they would be!

    1. Thanks, Susan. So that means I’ll have a good solid 25 or so years, right? Because I have a sinking feeling my son will be living in our basement at the age of 30, so I can keep doing his laundry–just a hunch.

  9. Loved the photos, D-Woww! What a lovely family. And yes, you won’t want them to speak their mind when their teens. Then it’s just “back-talk” as my parents used to say. I miss those younger years – youngest is 23 – but the teens, don’t miss too much.

    Keep the pics coming if you have WB. Though your version of WB is most people’s version of good writing. Don’t be discouraged, my friend.

    1. Is it really as bad as I hear it is, MJ? Because if so, I am really really scared. Someone told me the tween years for a girl are the worst. Something to look forward to I suppose.

      You are way too kind. Thanks for the encouragement on the WB. Hope you’re liking your new digs over at .org! I need to change my URL but I’m scared.

  10. If you have writer’s block, how is it that I laughed three times out loud just now. The ellipsis bit is hilarious! I think I knew that but I forgot until you told me 🙂 Your children are insanely cute — what did you do, form them out of whipped butter and rose petals or something?

    My next pet will be named Freckle. Just you wait.

    1. The ellipsis thing blew me away. She was so matter-of-fact about it. Like she was saying, gee, Mom, everyone knows what it is. (I still don’t really get it…)

      And yes, they are whipped butter and rose petals in my eyes!

      Your next pet? Please, tell me it’ll be a lizard! A dragon? Unicorn? What pet haven’t you had?

  11. singleworkingmomswm

    Oh, Darla, I think using writer’s block as a blogging topic is priceless, really, you do not have me fooled in the least! 😉 What are they “teaching my kids…” is right! I just learned the other day from Maycee (who is was home sick again today, bummer) that they have “lock down” drills at her “new” school. Not fire drills or earthquake drills only (they do also have those), but “lock down” drills. I asked Maycee what that was, and she said, “Well, the teacher told us if someone strange comes into the school we are supposed to lock the classroom and hide under our desks.” Post-Columbine, I suppose, but she never had these at her private Christian school, yikes! Oh, and next we have a “gang” meeting with the local police station…Okay, I digress…love the pictures! Hugs and keep us laughing, girl! I’m almost caught up on my reading!

    1. Bummer about Maycee still being sick. My son is sick today (he threw-up at around 1 in the morning last night…why is it always in the middle of the night when these things happen?) And my daughter is sick with a bad cold so we are ALL staying home today in our jammies and watching TV. I have to say, I am fine with that, all this running around gets to you after awhile you just want to stay home for a day in bed.

      Lock down drills–I’m sure we have those too. It’s really sad but this is what we’ve come to in this world. My kids’ school is locked all the time actually. They used to let just anybody walk right in but after last year, no more (an incident with a divorced dad took his son home without permission from the mom)

      I hope Maycee feels back to herself soon and you can catch up on all your reading. I know I have serious reading to do too.

  12. Great stuff, I imagine you running after your kids with the vaccuum nozzle.

    I know I don’t want kids but if I could borrow one for a day just to hear the funny stuf that they come out with would be great – saying that, why haven’t my siblings ever asked me to babysit?!

    Great photos, love the Super Mario eyebrow! And the drawing, I’m on the good side with my real name and my online name (Joan isn’t one of them, but if for some inexplicable reason I had gender reassignment then I’ll call myself that to complete the circle)

    1. That was my life, Joe/Joan/John–chasing my kids around with the vac. Still is actually. ONce he got into the Q-tips when he was one and I found them in places for months after…my shoes, the radiators, the shower drain…

      Ha, funny you pointed out the Super Mario Unibrow. I thought that was pretty hilarious too. She wears that halloween costume all the time. She wanted to go to school in it (with unibrow) but I had to draw the line somewhere.

      Your line about gender reassignment made me spit out my coffee.

      Now I think John is a lovely name. How can I refer to you as Joe anymore now that I know what your real name is? I am partial to J names. I was very close to calling my son James (my daughter’s name is Julia) but my husband vetoed it (because his name is James, he didn’t want a Jr.)

      1. J’s are always cool, It’s even more confusing as it’s Jon without the ‘h’. But I go by Joe no problem, the history behind it is a friend always thought that Joe was my name for ages so she can’t call me anything else now. But other friends call me Jonny too, so I answer to anything that’s polite since I’ve been called far worse. The Hoover part comes form my surname which is Dyson and what with both being brands of vaccum cleaner (how apt on this post!) the same Joe girl changed my surname too and it stuck.

        Your kids along with Good Greatsby’s have likeminds and it’s easy to see where they get it from 🙂

        So that’s great parenting whether you need to hide in the bathroom now and then or not!

      2. Jon, you are too kind. I think I might have to stop hiding out in the bathroom so much so my kids can teach me a thing or two about life and the world. They seem to have it all figured out and I’m just here to learn from them.

  13. Beautiful pictures and as always embedded with some intelligent words. I specially like your conversion with your son. ““It’s not love. Actually, it’s trees. ….. So you are wrong, Mom, it’s trees.” Your son is using his intelligence in right path. Pass on my good wishes to him. I hope you remember, I wrote a post on that same thing long time back.
    And Who says you are in the middle of writer’s block. And if you are in that block, then you are doing the best thing to get out of that. If you have time then go through a post written by one of my blogging friend about creative block. I am giving you the link to that one. It helped me a lot when I felt the same, few week’s earlier.
    I hope, it is going to help you. Darla I know, something really good will come from your keyboard very soon. Good luck to you.

    1. Arindam, both my kids are smarter than I’ll ever be.
      I appreciate your support, I know most writers out there understand what it’s like to have no ideas. Seems to happen to me more and more lately. Must be my mid-life crisis (again)

    1. They really do keep me on my toes. I have no idea what they’re talking about most of the time, but I just nod my head and go along with it. Proof positive that each generation is a million times smarter than the one before it (well, in my case)

      Enjoy tomorrow because I hear it’s going to be 50! Whoo hoo, spring is sprung in February! Let the Muddin’ Season begin!

  14. You keep using the term ‘writer’s block’, I do not think it means what you think it means. (smile)
    Great to see pictures here, Darla. You are a wonderful photographer, and your kids are photogenic. This was super nice. And duh … of course it is oxygen!!

    P.S. I kissed Joe on the head during dinner last night. His response? He groaned, “Great. Now we’re married and your pregnant.”

      1. Peg, it’s okay. Frack is pregnant. Nothing to see here.

        (I sincerely hope those weren’t big-headed sad children on my best friends’ walls…now I’m really going to have trouble sleeping tonight)

    1. I know…(ellipsis!) Duh is right! What was I thinking? Love?? Psssbbbbt. Can’t have love if you can’t breathe. My son is a genius.

      Joe’s comment is the exact same one my husband said once upon a time…(ellipsis)

  15. Didn’t you hear, Peg? Darl’lito is pregnito! Ha. Oh, I jest, I jest. Just ‘clowning’ around.
    I’m not pregnant either. Though my son believes I am pregnant with three babies – Duncan, Ben and Mary, I assure you – the fact that I kissed him on his head did not – in fact – make me pregnant.

    1. OK, here’s the thing: I just got back on here and noticed I had a few little notifications of comments up in the corner (I am LOVING that new feature by the way) and what is the FIRST comment I glance at?

      Darl’lito is pregnito!

      Are you trying to kill me, Lenore? because I think my heart just stopped. My kids had to break out the defibrillator (again)

  16. Your children are precious!!! Great black and whites and love the color too all mixed in with your wonderful humor. Now I know you can operate a camera beautifully. Your daughter looks like you! So glad the camera unleashed some more Darlese. Whew…another post! You did it!

    1. Oh, thank you kindly, Georgette! My daughter is my mini-me and my son is my husband’s mini-him. I did this post with your suggestion. It is slowly getting the wheels turning in my head again. Slowly.

  17. This post does not represent a human with writer’s block. It shows a writer who can use many formats to communicate to the adoring crowds … and to explain ellipses. Your daughter is now, formally, as educated as me. Or is it as I am. … whatever

    1. Speaking of crowds that adore…are you still recovering from the FP? Fingers numb? Drool on your keyboard? Eyes bloodshot?

      I already have my tattoo. It’s a picture of the Freshly Pressed page on my butt with yours and Angie’s blogs on it.

  18. Great photos. I love the “caughtcha” photos. Both your son and daughter look like they know how to tell a joke. And…score….you now can sling the word “ellipsis” around in your vocabulary and your daughter will know what you’re talking about. Your son….well…I don’t know…my boy would’ve said that was a dumb word. Now he just looks at me implying the ellipsis.

    1. My kids can tell a good joke and they don’t even realize they are being hilarious.

      They are also lightyears ahead of me in terms of intelligence. They both had yet another deep conversation in the backseat today about life and death (totally unprompted by me). They are so matter of fact about it. “I was another person before I came down here to be with mommy and daddy” and “Yeah, when we die we jump from cloud to cloud until we shrink down to baby-size again and come back down to earth.” and “God takes care of all the babies, did you know that, Mom?” I learn a lot from these kids every day. Pretty mind-blowing stuff they talk about.

      1. christine

        part 2 of things the vacuum (shop vac ) likes to eat coming ? I haven’t seen that post awhile cannot believe the hits its had ! Looking a my past comments people must think iam weird ,but what can say I love vacuuming

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