I am always amazed at the way reality likes to poke holes in the filmy curtains that swirl in my mind. I've been approaching my life as a journalist rather like a kindergartener who is shocked to see her teacher at the grocery store. Real life has not ceased just because I've been published a few times. My story was the most emailed story on www.courierpress.com for over a week, and yet I still do not have a maid. Somehow those 73 comments the story garnished did not automatically turn me into an international jet-setter. I had the pleasure of visiting the Harmonie Haus theater in historic New Harmony a couple of weekends ago for a cover story for the West Side. But being who I am it wasn't a simple jaunt over to a neighboring town. As a nursing mom with a demanding baby who doesn't even know what a bottle looks like I couldn't see leaving her for the length of time it would take to interview everyone. It quickly turned into a family outing. Horton Hears a Who was showing and since the boys are big fans of Dr. Seuss (of course, who isn't?) we opted to take the whole McKinney clan.
This first thing involved was a 25 mile drive to New Harmony. My daughter Alice began to fuss which I thought was related to her new disdain of her carseat, leading to much arching of the back and grumpy red faces. Next came the unmistakable sound and odor of throwing up. Of course, I had extra diapers and wipes but no extra outfit, so Alice spent the rest of the trip congealing to her straps.
Hugh dropped me off for my interview and I spent the next hour in a beautifully restored home filled with local art. Meanwhile Hugh drove another 15 miles to Mt. Vernon in search of a McDonald's and someplace that sold baby clothes. He located a Family Dollar and bought Alice the only 18 month size outfit available, a pink and sea foam green pair of long johns decorated with butterflies. While changing her a man walked by and remarked "Cute Baby." Hugh said "Thanks," much to the horror of the boys who reprimanded him for talking to a stranger.
Hugh forgot I had another interview scheduled at 5:30 pm and was a bit late returning. I feared setting him lose with three kids might be tossing him to the wolves. I ate a cold Big Mac and even colder fries for dinner, and tried to concentrate on interviewing the theater managers while my children ran wild in the lobbey and begged for Ring Pops and Nerds.
Most of the patrons I tried to interview looked at me like I was asking them to taste test various brands of pickled pigs feet. I did find a few who were willing to talk and add some local color to my article, and the kindly theater manager gave my kiddos a poster of "Horton Hears A Who" and a book on New Harmony history. The kids enjoyed the movie and I enjoyed what I saw of it, which wasn't much since Alice demanded to be taken out so she could crawl around and slobber all over the concession case.
Hugh and I calculated the cost of gas for driving to New Harmony, then driving to Mt. Vernon, then the cost of a meal for 4 at McDonalds, then driving back to New Harmony, movie tickets, and then the drive back home. By the time I get my check for this article (and believe me, for a freelancer the money just trickles in) we will probably just about break even. I keep telling myself that this is just preparation for the novel I am writing which will be an official Oprah's Book Club Selection. It's all about paying my dues.
Before I leave you today, here are a few reasons you haven't seen much of my blog lately. Enjoy!
Also, I've been working with my friend Jane Vickers on her line of stuffed toys. They are called "'Li'l Monsters" and they are quite adorable. Yours truly came up with a few of the descriptions and names in exchange for some cool toys and funky earrings!
I have also started another blog devoted just to homeschooling:
I have an article coming up in the next Beeyoutiful catalog on Vitex, an herb useful for feminine support. Next month I am writing at least one article for the Courier's West Side and article on babywearing for Evansville Parent, as well as couple more articles for News4U.
So as you can see, I have reason to neglect my blog but I will try to do better in the future! As long as I have days like this, where I knock over a potty full of pee as I run to the toilet in desperation as my insides curl and uncurl in distress caused by drinking 2% milk for the first time in weeks while SIMULTANEOUSLY nursing my 10 month old daughter I will never run out of things to write about, and I will also never be glamorous.