We were sitting in church on Christmas Eve while Grandmom's church's youth group performed a nativity play with all the enthusiasm of pre-teens forced to perform a nativity play in the uncoolest costumes on the planet.
Nat sat on my lap, leafed through the hymnal and squirmed.
Every five minutes or so, the play would freeze and we'd all be asked to sing an illustrative carol. Then we'd stop, it would be quiet and the play would resume.
And into the silence after every carol, Nat would call out "Mo' sing!" at the top of her lungs.
They should have made her director, because she was onto something. She was definitely the most enthusiastic audience member there.
It's telling that I have no category for discussing my professional life, isn't it? Perhaps I should make one. What do you think? Would you come over here, scan the categories and think "what about her professional life? I'd like to read about that!"?
It seems that my dissertation has been accepted for review at a decently middling university press, which, my most successful academic peer and BFF, Karen, tells me is actually better than middling in Women's Studies which is the specialty of the editor who requested my manuscript for a looking over two summers ago.
Two summers ago, someone randomly emailed me having read my abstract, asking if I'd be interested in submitting to her press. I had a squalling infant, had only just finished the PhD, had no interest in ever picking up my dissertation again as long as I lived and I felt flattered, but let it sit.
Then last summer, I got a royalty check (10 big ones, whoo-hoo!) for electronically ordered copies of my dissertation and I became paranoid that some desperate grad student somewhere was going to plagiarize my hard work and I sent my manuscript off to the Women's Studies editor at the middling press. That was July and I forgot about it.
Then last week, I got another random email from a yowza, whoo-hoo, OMIGOD press requesting a look at my dissertation. I emailed middling press and said politely "yowza, whoo-hoo, OMIGOD press would like to see the manuscript I sent you 6 months ago. Have you decided to pass it up?"
Less than an hour later, Women's Studies editor wrote back with many exclamation points begging me to send her three more copies and a disk so she could get it out to reviewers right away.
Well, I frankly don't care who publishes the thing, I just want it in a book, collecting dust on a library shelf and being a bit harder to plagiarize. So I am sending three more copies and a disk to middling press this week. Wish me luck.
When I grow up, I want to be someone who very well could have gotten tenure at any half-decent university job, but just chose not to. Having a published book will make me feel like I am progressing toward that goal nicely. I want to occasionally crash an academic conference with a name badge that says "Independent Scholar" and hold my head high, knowing it's true and doesn't mean "poor sap who can't get a job" whatever the other conferees might think.
And I want, in fact to be an independent scholar who teaches and writes what I want, when I want, on my own clock and in my own area of interest. Sometimes I want to write non academic things and sometimes I want to write academic things and most of the time I want to write academic things that are readable and digestible by non academics.
And all the while I want to be a "Stay-at-Home-Mom" and a home schooler and a wide-ranging hobbyist.
Of course, fianances make a difference as to the achievability of this plan. So while you're crossing your fingers about my manuscript, cross them that Cole hits the academic rockstar big time and makes enough money for me to be the underachiever of my dreams.
Here is the non-identifying top of Nat's head, taken this morning 30 seconds after I finished her 'do. Two of the clips were out within an hour and now she's napping--who knows how long the rest will survive? The key point to be made here is that I can do the styles if I can get her to not throw a fit for ten minutes. We did this while she played in the sink and watched herself in the mirror.
Her hair is about 2" long on top, but only about .5" in the back. So the clips end when I run out of hair. It was bald back there for a long time, due to back-sleeping, but is at least covered now, if not long. Hopefully the silk sheets and hair lotion will help her back hair not to break off as it grows in and maybe in a few months, she'll have an even spread I can braid all the way down.
All the Josephine necklaces are sold. Thanks to those who bought one, they will be in the mail this afternoon.
Meanwhile, if anyone would still like to honor Jo, I have decided to extend the donation opportunity. Anything that sells on my jewelry site until Sunday 10 December will be added to the Freedom to Marry donation in Jo's name.
My friend, Nancy, lost her mother very rapidly to late-stage lung cancer last summer. Nancy's mom was this amazing woman from Atlanta, who stood up for her lesbian daughter when anyone at work, church, in the neighborhood or at the family reunion made assumptions about her sharing their anti-gay values. "Watch it!" Jo would say, "my daughter is gay and I love her!"
Jo was also a beader, like me, and sometimes, when visiting DC, Nancy and I would hit the wholesale bead store in the 'burbs and I'd buy beads for me and help Nancy choose beads for Jo.
After her mother's death, Nancy boxed up all of her beads and tools and sent them to me. It doubled my collection and I had to go out and buy a special cart to haul them around in.
I made four special necklaces using some of my beads, and some of Jo's beads and I'm selling them on my jewelry website. I am going to donate all the money I get from the sale of these "Josephine" necklaces to Freedom to Marry.Org
Next summer, Nancy will wed her true love in an extra-legal commitment ceremony and her mother won't be able to be there. But she would have wanted it to be legal. So choose one of these necklaces for yourself or someone you love and think of Jo!
About the necklaces:
"Josephine: Red" features red Swarovski crystals, hematite rings and a sterling silver clasp. It is 24" long.
"Josephine: Crystal" features clear Swarovski crystals, Czech glass, hematite rings and a sterling silver clasp. It is 26" long.
"Josephine: Green/Blue" features lapis lazuli, green malachite, hematite rings and a sterling silver clasp. It is 24" long.
"Josephine: Rondell" features Swarovski clear rondells, Swarovski crystal core pearls, hematite rings and a sterling silver clasp. It is 22" long.