A woman I just met for the first time at a Twins Club meeting told me:

My sister has twins too. Everyone asks me if twins run in the family. I say, “No, but infertility does!”

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Thoughtful Thursday: Natural

November 17, 2011

Thoughtful ThursdayOn a different photo topic from being photogenic

I had another instance of getting the wind knocked out of me this week. Burrito and Tamale both love technology (despite not being allowed near any electronic gizmos). They discovered the answering machine that is part of the cordless phone base. We switched to machineless voicemail a year and a half ago, so the answering machine has just been sitting there, idle. At the time of the switch, we happened to have saved a few messages, then never deleted them.

Burrito and Tamale decided to press all of the buttons. They played the messages.

  1. Work thing for DH which is now very much moot.
  2. “How are the babies?” message from former coworker.
  3. Random message from my mother.

It was such a shock to suddenly hear her voice, out of nowhere.

I can still hear her voice in my head, but I don’t really have any good audio or video samples of her.

There were a few videos my dad shot when she was sick, in the hospital or in a rehab facility, to show me her condition. Not an accurate representation of her usual self.

During better times, whenever my mother was in front of the camera, she became decidedly unnatural. Still camera: bizarre, stilted pose with fake smile. Always the same one, but not a body position or face that she ever made off camera. Video camera: the most talkative person in the world suddenly clammed up.

DH is totally himself on video. With a still camera, he psychs himself out sometimes, and either smiles too much or not enough. When we just had professional photos taken, out of 300 photos, the only ones where he looks natural are a few where he forgot about the camera and focused on interacting with one of us. He does look good in many of them, but it’s just not quite him.

I like to think that I act and look pretty natural in front of the still camera. When a video camera is pointed at me putting me on the spot to say something, like the videographer at a wedding, I have nothing to say (sorry about your wedding videos, everyone). With everyday videos, though, like the ones we take of Burrito and Tamale, I am absolutely myself. For good or for bad, that’s me.

How natural are you in front of the camera?

Thoughtful Thursday

Welcome to the November Intelligentsia, the people who have commented on every Thoughtful Thursday post in October.

#25: Elana from Elana’s Musings
#22: A from Are You Kidding Me?
#22: Lost In Translation fromĀ We Say IVF, They Say FIV
#17: Strongblonde from Strong Blonde
#9: Tara from Turkey In My Oven
#9: Rebecca from Get Lost With Me, Darling
#7: St. Elsewhere
#6: Lori Lavender Luz fromĀ Write Mind Open Heart
#3: Heather from Joys in My Life

Thoughtful ThursdayI just visited a Happy Place. Not my Happy Place, but Mel’s. I’ve written before about how it brings me peace to walk through kitchen stores, but this particular place is much more than that.

While I was there, aside from the regular thoughts (“Can I get them to eat this lentil salad?” “Aaaah stop running, Burrito! Please don’t knock over any displays!” “Mmmmmm frosting.”) I kept thinking, “This is Mel’s Happy Place. She has driven many hours out of her way just to come here.” Being so special made it more special to me.

My Happy Place is sometimes the pottery studio, particularly when I’m alone there, but this new place (which is otherwise far better than the old, in so many ways starting with the impossibility of disasters or calamities destroying all of my work) doesn’t have open studio time, so I’m always there with the teacher and other students.

I enjoy consignment shopping — I never pay retail for kids’ clothes — but I really enjoy the semi-annual consignment sale at my local multiples club. That is absolutely a Happy Place for me.

Last week, I was in a city about which I have mixed feelings (in large part because DH’s mother lives there; otherwise it has a lot going for it). There are many wonderful things in that city, but we usually end up staying in the suburbs and only spending time with people. I do have a Happy Place there, though. A city block that has three of my favorite places anywhere. I suggested going there during this trip, but DH poopoo’d it. He was right. This particular Happy Place wouldn’t be so happy while juggling toddlers.

Then, today, a new Happy Place when I came home from work. As soon as I walked in the door, Burrito and Tamale each burst into applause accompanied by joyous exclamations of “Yay! Mama! Yay! Mama! Yaaaaaay!”

The happiest Happy Place ever.

What is your Happy Place?