Wednesday, March 28, 2012


She also likes rocking in her own chair, eating whipped cream (that was her first time ever!), and going to the Long Marine Lab.

Home to the Dome

So, the Thom family is making its home in a dome. Eloise knows the word 'dome' means home. I was showing her a picture of a spider web and telling her that was the spider's house. She pointed to the picture and said, "dome". The days when her home was a boat seem a long time ago. Five months of being a landlubber has flown by for Eloise and me. We still shake our heads at the length of Brian’s trip and all of the acts of providence that helped him along his way. There were plenty of challenges but every single time something went awry, Brian had what he needed, or he was provided for. For example, Brian and crew set out on the last leg of the trip, from Christmas Island to Kona, Hawaii. Within an hour, a turnbuckle on the bobstay broke. This required them to turn back. There are no turnbuckles for sale on Christmas Island. Where was he to get one? Timei (our local friend) mentioned that he had some customers arriving in a few days and he had their phone number. Brian called them and they were willing to courier a new turnbuckle down to him without too much delay. And the stories like that are endless. A stranger in the Kona marina got to talking to Brian and then offered him the use of his scooter to get around for a week. Friends of a friend put Brian up in their house for the two nights before he flew out, AND they did all of his laundry for him! It’s been one month of being a two parent family again. Brian, Jeff #2, and Krista arrived in Kona, Hawaii on the 12th of February. Brian, with the help of many strangers and friends of friends, got the boat cleaned, organized, packed up, and hauled out of the water for storage in dry dock. He’s been back in California a little over one month. He had one week to hang out with Eloise, sleep, and try to adjust to life on land before it was time for him to take over teaching independent studies for the Santa Cruz county office of education. I’d been taking his place for one month so he wouldn’t lose the job. Eloise stayed with Ama (my mom) during the day, for that month while I worked. Then, Eloise had the delight of cousin Julia (4 years old) and Auntie Erica from Kansas coming to play with her for one week. It worked out perfectly. Brian flew in two days before Erica and Julia had to return home. We had the benefit of their nanny service AND Brian got to see his sister for the first time in a year and a half. I transitioned from 5 days a week to two and am enjoying meeting students. However, I couldn’t imagine missing more than two days a week with Eloise. Other than getting Brian back safely, another dream has come true. While we were away in Tonga, I longed to plant a garden again. So, with Eloise’s help, there are seeds sleeping in the soil of our raised bed. She helped me place them in their holes and told them, “night night” when I covered them with their blankets of dirt. Chard, cilantro, tomatoes, peppers, and more. AAAAH. What a good feeling it is to have a garden. Above ground, right now there are only a couple stray sunflowers that reseeded from last year. But in my mind’s eye, I am harvesting, processing, freezing, and cooking food that I get to pick myself. And then there’s those practical flowers zinnias, yarrow, and more sunflowers that I ONLY plant because they attract good bugs…. I might just accidentally pick and enjoy one or two in a vase this summer. I laugh and smile many times a day, thanks to Eloise, our sweet, humorous, social tomboy. I still find it ironic that in my teens and twenties I was adamant that I did not want to have a baby. I was even more adamant that I would never stay home and be a “housewife”. I seemed oppressive. But I feel so alive, playing games of chase with Eloise in between all the daily chores that keep a home enjoyable. And I’m not a “house” wife. I have an outdoors, indoors, library, park, Ama’s house, kitchen, grocery store occupation. It’s varied and not lonely. It’s social (making time for play dates!) and independent. I am very fortunate to have this job. Eloise has quite a job description, too. She enjoys almost everything…taking baths, taking walks, playing chase, jumping on our neighbor’s trampoline with daddy, hiding, carrying arms full of dolls around the house, making towers, talking (LOTS of language. We stopped counting how many words she uses), going for walks riding in the backpack on mommy’s back. Feeding and petting the kitties. Eloise enjoys living. It means we have lots of smiles.