Tag Archives: boston

And hello

More than usual going on. A beloved friend visiting. Being out and about with her — MFA and JFK Library. Then a dinner party. K with a mole that needed not just removal but excising. Meeting with estate planner same day as surgery. Crafting a query letter for novel. Sending it out once. Teaching a class (yeah!).

Purchased a nifty mini-light box. Hope to have time to really use soon.

It’s been very windy and warm but tonight the temps are supposed to drop: time to bring the last of the plants in. I’ll be tied up for most of the next week but will post some pictures anyway, here and on Instagram.

Still in between

Dumplings in Chinatown.

Home Depot run followed by Savers. Look at that beautiful linen shawl and swath of Woolrich houndstooth!

Ansel Adams at the MFA — unbelievably crowded. Tolerable because I know I’ll be back.

Watching Bird Box (creepy good with some unexplained baloney that I now call ‘the Lost Effect’ — after the TV show).

Not sharing.

Fitbit early observations: the steps have got to be inflated (it doesn’t take 1200 to get dressed and make breakfast), sleep stages are all in the normal range but I could use a little more, and I really am not that keen on having this apparatus on my wrist (don’t tell K. And anyway I know I’ll find it useful).

All good holidays now include trips to the airport. We head back to terminal B later today.

I cannot believe that I used to put out dinners for four 350 nights a year.

We are all wishing for snow.

Photo from MFA pictured above:

I swore

I swore an oath, I mean. To uphold the Constitution and so on in service of my duties as a Notary Public. This is the sort of formality that when practicing law seemed a quaint inconvenience but this morning (after being a stay at home mom for a long time (and now a stay at home whatever)), seemed a little momentous.

The raised right hand. Proof of identity. Presentation of the letter of appointment.

After swearing the oaths, I signed the big ledger book. All wrong. Oh dear. The beautiful thick pages with tri-color lines marred by my inability to follow directions. I was halfway done, when I noticed the pen tied to the counter, clearly meant to service the signees. Appalled, I asked, “Is this supposed to be in black ink?” Oops. And then I scribed today’s date in the box meant for the commission’s start date. Scribble. Scribble. “I’m so sorry,” I said to the nice man behind the counter (a counter, which, by the way came up to my collar bones and might’ve had something to do with an impaired performance) (nice try, Dee). “Your beautiful pages. Your lovely book. I’m so sorry.” I got the sense that the clerk didn’t give a shit about the book but appreciated my forlorn apology.

K drove me in and out. What a guy! I had three months to get this done and left it to very nearly to the last minute.

Other news: I registered (correctly, as it turns out) for Newton Open Studios yesterday. It takes place the first weekend in April. I’ve participated five times in this city-wide event, but it’s been a while. I have so much finished work! So much almost-finished work. As long as I put the writing first, I’m good. Actually — excited!

Palm sky house



Too much blue? Added more today including at rooflines. Those are the pieces I’m considering taking off.

The bottom dark blue floral strip came from a pair of rayon pants I bought a couple of weeks ago.

More progress shots, just for fun.


Another rainy day here. Spent part of the morning at a program for the 21st Annual Mother’s Day Walk for Peace.

what will be recovered

rock-ice

A list of things released from the snow banks or recently dropped: a perfectly unbruised Granny Smith apple; two foil packets marked “HYPE”; dog shit; pine cones; pine branches; rhodie branches; nut hulls; more dog shit. Up and over the hill — a river of catalpa pods, as if Winter set out to weave a basket edge to the sidewalk and gave up in fatigue. On Wakefield:  a wicker Santa head; a blue puzzle piece (sky? ocean?); Corona beer caps. Back on Jackson: bags with squished remains of lunch; foil; shards of a paper plate; small branches; large branches. At the end of one driveway, a newspaper disgorged from plastic, wet and re-wet and driven over so many times it is tempting to the papermaker in me, but I know I could never bring myself to shovel it up (because it would require forethought? because I want to see how long it stays there? because the papermaking supplies are who-knows-where?).  Everywhere: dog shit. On some telephone poles: plastic covered appeals for neighbors to pick up their dog shit. An old water bottle filled with bird seed. Looking up for a moment: a hawk sails to the south, with specks of audacious passerines flapping behind. Down low: pine branches; oak branches; sycamore hulls; and dirt, dirt, dirt.

Here and there: brave spades of hosta shoving aside ice and dirty snow, making their proclamations of spring.

Rounding the corner to the house (here, I let the leash go and command “go home!”): mud, hemlock detritus, an entire row of hosta (mine) peeking up. It is snowing again. Did I mention that?

I am wondering if I shall find whatever pieces of myself fell off during this winter. There seems no guarantee.

returning to some routines

snow-roof-deemallonWhat a time has just passed — intense, unbelievable, white, white, white!  The colliding conditions of a record-setting winter and adopting a puppy ‘with issues’ made for a time that was both debilitating and exhilarating. In some ways, the conditions forced simplicity. Can’t go visit friends. Boom. Can’t run errands. Boom. And, the positives were heart-melting and pure — joyful play in the snow with an exuberant creature… warm, snuggles on the couch with a super affectionate dog. Those liquid brown eyes. That wagging tail.  A winter wonderland.

In other ways, the collision forced complicated, constant accommodations that were exhausting. Fence maintenance. In and out multiple times a day in the WORST weather. Scrambling to sign up for canine training classes and finding none for weeks on end because they, like so much else, were cancelled. And then there was the snow removal. And more snow removal. And snow removal yet again.* (*repeat three times).

I felt like I’d been dropped into an alternate universe — one I wasn’t sure I wanted to inhabit.  The loss of the empty-nest compensations (neat house, control of my time) slapped me in the face, every day. Every hour of every day?IMG_8221Inside, a puppy-proofed living space with its bareness and intermittent piles of chewed destruction seemed unreal. A crate where there was once a dining room table. All sewing supplies stashed four-to-five feet up. Outside, the vast banks of snow made us “strangers in a strange land”.*  What happened to the road?  The sidewalk?  Our fence?!!  Could the sky really be delivering yet another foot of snow?!

Writing classes were cancelled because of narrowed streets. K worked from home OFTEN because the T kept shutting down. Social engagements were declined with embarrassed apologies about the slow pace of crate training or road closures. I took to ordering myself groceries online right after I ordered for my sister, whom I did not see for a record three (or was it FOUR?) weeks running. Nothing was business as usual.

I didn’t recognize myself either. I became a person who talks about the weather. . . someone who watches the news and then plans accordingly. To go outside (which was OFTEN, with the dog), I wore two layers of down, leggings under my pants, and kept four pairs of gloves and two pairs of boots at the ready, in various stages of drying. I wore a ‘boarding style’ hat because it hugged the crown and could be pulled low over my forehead.

And… I realized I wasn’t yet a ‘dog person’. Turns out, caring for Jack had been a lot like having a cat. He came to us a sedate two year old, just wanting food and love. So easy!

Finn is a whole other story:  1) he’s a puppy;  2) he’s a working breed; 3) he exhibits leash aggression to other dogs (not people, thank goodness!). In other words, he needs honest-to-goodness training. Can’t really do that WITHOUT becoming a ‘dog person’.

All of this became part of a response to a prompt in last week’s writing class. Maybe I’ll post some of it tomorrow? It’s a full-fledged rant, so we’ll see.  They tend to be revealing.

Anyway, rant or no rant, I’m back. Thanks for returning faithful readers! I can’t wait to catch up on your blogs.


window-snow-shadows-deemallonsnowbanks-deemallonpuppy-snow-deemallon*  (I didn’t know that phrase came out of the lips of the prophet Moses until yesterday, reading W.E.B. Du Bois).

Unbelievable just unbelievable

Fourteen more inches. Five more coming tomorrow?
icicles-deemallon-winter2015Light as a feather — but so much of it!! Had to dig the ‘reverse moat’ again and re-establish our rope-play paths (did I mention Finn jumped the fence the day before yesterday?)

IMG_7843IMG_7853IMG_7834IMG_7854IMG_7856Parts of the fence have virtually disappeared. K installed wire barriers in one spot (where Finn easily and gracefully hopped over). More wire barriers needed on north side. To be effective, my ‘reverse moat’ requires digging on the other side of the fence as well as ours — an awkward maneuver that strains the elbow and arm and makes me feel terribly sorry for myself.
winter2015-deemallon-roof-snowWe are all doing the best we can! A section of our pipes have frozen. No water getting to master bath. The ceiling is leaking in the kitchen where it typically does when there is an ice dam. Ominous cracks have appeared along the yellowed section of ceiling. We need to get those ice melting ‘hockey pucks’ ASAP — or stuff cut-off nylons with ice melt, since there probably aren’t any pucks available, anywhere.
snow-deemallon-winter2015Only six people showed up in my husband’s office. Not clear if the T is even running out this far. Worst of all, Finn’s play rope (which gets buried and re-discovered in a series of gleeful digs on his part during the game), disappeared last evening and despite moving what feels like a mountain of snow — I had no luck finding it this morningFound it!! Much joyful playing ensued!!

puppy-snow-deemallonThe good news? K is home. If he weren’t, I’m fairly certain the kitchen ceiling would have collapsed by now.