Maybe Matilda: Insta-review

Friday, October 10, 2014


I’m coming off a Kate Morton high right now, so you’ll have to excuse me today. This isn’t the post I had planned, but I stayed up too late finishing The Secret Keeper and the photos I need  for the post that was meant to happen today are sitting around twiddling their virtual thumbs on my camera aaalllllll the way in the kitchen, a whopping 10ish steps from where I’m currently sitting, and it’s all just too much, I say. So it’s an instagram week in review sort of post today and if there’s one thing I know, it’s that people love being forced to see photos they have very possibly already seen elsewhere and read even longer captions than they were posted with the first time around, and don’t you know I aim to please around here? Always.

The Secret Keeper was my flavor of the week and frankly, I’d appreciate it if we all took a moment to reflect on how incredible it is that I get anything done this week—anything at all—other than planting myself firmly on the sofa from first page to last. Kate Morton was in my house, waiting patiently for me on my nightstand, and yet my family was still clothed and fed and neither of my children met with significant bodily harm this week and I feel rather proud of it. I’ve written about my love for Kate Morton before (here and here, to be specific), and maybe you’re getting tired of hearing me rave about her, and if so you are in luck because I have now read everything she’s written (sob!) so I guess this might be the last time I go on about her. History, family secrets, just the right amount of suspense and romance and spine-tingling creep factor—I think she is fantastic. I spent the first two-thirds of The Secret Keeper thinking that it would fall somewhere in the upper-middle-ish range for me—Kate Morton always knows how to keep me involved, but I didn’t think I was going to love it. The final third, though—it leaped from, “Hm, yes, I’m liking this,” to “EVERYONE SHUT UP AND GO AWAY AND LEAVE ME ALONE WITH MY PRECIOUS.”

Keeping me from zipping through it quite as quickly as I wanted was this girl finally discovering that GOOD GRACIOUS I CAN MOVE OF MY OWN FREE WILL?!

Darcy’s been a just a teensy hair behind the curve in hitting physical milestones so far—she’ll turn one at the end of the month and up until yesterday she was just doing the old frog-swim army crawl. Couldn’t even be bothered to get up on her knees to crawl (although she’d occasionally prop herself up on hands and knees, take a few test rocks back and forth, then summon all her strength and courage for a mighty step forward and phwoooooooomp glide straight out onto her belly with all the grace you’d expect of someone we briefly considered naming Grace). And I’ve been perfectly content with her slow progress in the motion department, because it sure makes life easier for me to not have to spend every second of every minute of every day barricading the stairs and monitoring her every movement, and if I learned anything from Forrest and his slowness to walk followed by slowness to talk, it’s that kids will do things when they’re good and ready and that better be fine by me. Yesterday, though? An itty bitty little Christmas-string-sized light bulb finally lit up in her brain and I could almost hear her saying to herself, “Hang on. I’ve got these four handy extremities emerging from my torso and perhaps they could be used to haul my person closer to—and then perhaps onto or into--things that I find interesting!”

And just like that, off she went. In one afternoon—I’m not exaggerating—she went from only frog-style swimming across the floor on her belly to climbing up the first two stairs, pulling herself up to stand against boxes and furniture, hauling herself completely on top of the box pictured above, and climbing directly into the toy chest that has taunted her for months. Who’s the boss now, toy chest?

I suppose she’ll be joining me for my morning jog tomorrow. And not in the stroller, either, at the rate she’s going.

On this week’s breakfast menu (yes, that’s right) were a strong contender for the title of New Favorite Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe. I got the recipe right HERE from Chelsea at Two Twenty One and they are everything a chocolate chip cookie should be. So soft. So moist. So chewy and flavorful and delicious. And this recipe yielded a cookie quite saltier than most I’ve made before, which I thought was amazing and irresistible. My only change to the recipe as written was to use 1/2 cup butter and 1/2 cup coconut oil (instead of 3/4 cup butter and 1/4 cup canola oil, which the recipe calls for). If you are in the market for a delicious batch of chocolate chip cookies this weekend, I think you know what to do. And pay attention to her advice on baking time. It makes all the difference.

I’ve recently been enjoying a burst of rather atypical homemaking energy. Do you hit that point where things are so bad that you just throw in the towel and give up? The house is just so messy and so dirty and it’s so overwhelming that you don’t even know where to begin, so you don’t? You just ignore it and pretend no one is home if there’s a knock at the door because you’re too embarrassed to answer? Well. My gracious mom and sister spent an entire day a few weeks ago helping me get things under control (have I ever mentioned that they are the very best? because they are), and you know, once the house has been cleaned pretty thoroughly one time, it’s not so terrible to keep things tidy after that (tidyish—let’s be real, I have two small children in my house and a husband that is sort of another large child himself, so we’re never going to reach maximum tidiness around here). Bekah is sort of a master organizer, so after seeing how she turned my (horrifying) kitchen junk cupboard and drawer into an exhibit at the Martha Stewart Museum of Organized Excellence, I caught the bug myself. And I think I’m finally making progress towards getting the house into some semblance of order, as well as getting the basement makeover underway. Oh, don’t you remember the basement makeover? The one I’ve been insisting was right around the corner since before I even became pregnant with Darcy? That’s the one. Baby steps. And I think I’ve passed on the ruthless purger gene to Forrest—just look at his smile of glee as we drop off an entire car load of unloved junk at the thrift store. I doubt he’ll have the same look on his face the next time he comes home from preschool to discover that I’ve used his absence to undertake the toy purge of the century. (I attempted to start while he was home today and he very anxiously inquired “why all my toys are going into that garbage bag, and what will I play with now?!?!?!?!”)

How was your week?

(If you wanna, you can find me on instagram: @maybematilda)


  1. My boys were on the "slower" (according to doctors) end of hitting physical milestones too. I once said to a nurse, "Isn't it ok if they skip crawling and go right to walking?" I had one smarty-pants nurse tell me, "Well his hand-eye coordination won't be good...he'll never play for the NFL." WHAT?!? Um, that wasn't our goal for our son anyway. But whatever. Anywho...they both did everything in their own time...not some silly doctors charts. And considering they're now 14 and 18 years old...happy, healthy, intelligent, active, well-adjusted young men...I'd say it that skipping crawling and going right to walking didn't amount to a hill of beans...take that mean nurse. Hehe!

  2. My Forest did the army crawl thing for nearly 3 months before he figured out the proper way to crawl, and then suddenly he was zooming everywhere. Now he's had the capability to walk on two legs for nearly two weeks but simply cannot be bothered to do so. The more I push, the more he resists and insists on crawling, so I'm trying not to be such a stage mom and just let him figure it out in his own time. I'm sure once he's up and running I will daydream about the days when he insisted on crawling...

    I will have to check out Kate Morton. Thanks for the recommendation. I feel the same way when I start a great book- keeping the family clothed, fed, and out of the emergency room is a major accomplishment.


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