Meet the Beans
Jenn Bean—that’s me, the author of this blog. I am one of those utterly disorganized people who dumps everything out of the box and immediately begins assembly with no regard for directions. An hour into a project that should have only taken 15 minutes, I will finally consult the accompanying instructions. Invariably a screw will be missing, sometimes a manufacturer’s mishap, but often the loose screw wandered into a remote hideout amid dust bunnies and cobwebs and other stray screws. Frustrated, I will take a break to do something that doesn’t require instructions—open a bottle of wine. Once fortified, I will reassess the situation and commence jury rigging with a bobby pin and an industrial-sized tube of Liquid Nails and a roll of duct tape that I keep for such occasions.
I am habitually late. I’m a bad Presbyterian who likes to eat, drink wine and read trash novels. I lost the instructions to Family 101 and in my 20s had a good time on the party circuit. With no adequate prospects and a clock that had tocked, I began fertility treatments at the age of 38 with the use of donor swimmers. I am the mother of two adorable Beans, and this is my story. You can email me at:
Jenn AT JennyBeansBlog DOT com
Jax (Bean One) is a precocious little Bean with quick wit and uncanny bargaining power. He, through the buying power of his Mimi, is responsible for the unending line of friends that Thomas, the Tank Engine, keeps acquiring and offering for sale. His Papa grumbles about his inventory control problems when Jax galvanizes a family search for the train de jour. Jax is 5 years-old.
Moose (Bean Two) is the Baby Bean. His hobbies include eating, annoying his brother and fishing in the toilet bowl. His determination and inclination for plowing over people and obstacles have earned him the nickname Bulldozer. He smiles easily and is already showing an interest in girls. Like his brother he has long lashes that frame deep blue eyes, a trait the little Beans inherited from an unknown donor. Baby Bean is almost 3.
Papa and Mimi Bean are my parents and the grandparents of the little Beans. They met circa 1964 when Papa, who was cruising around campus in his convertible, yelled to the foxy Mimi, “Hey, baby, wanna ride?” After three Beans and 25 years, they parted. Papa is disorganized and messy, and Mimi is drill-sergeant neat. Papa lives at Maison Bean with me and the little Beans, and while Mimi lives in a very tidy condo just two rivers away, she is often at Maison Bean tending to the little Beans and making order out of chaos. Their hobbies include squabbling with each other, going out for sushi and drinking martinis. Mimi drinks Grey Goose. Papa drinks Pavlov [read: cheap rotgut vodka].
Aunt Belle and Aunt Sissy (aka Zorro) ruined my life… for about 20 years. My world was shattered at the age of one-and-a-half when Mimi gave birth to a baby girl, Belle, forever ending my status as an only child. Eighteen months later, Mimi zinged me again with yet another sister, Sissy. Finally Mimi and Papa discovered birth control, but by then it was too late. I had to compete with annoying sisters for everything—attention, toys, the telephone, the front seat of the station wagon and later boys. As an adult I finally recovered from the grand interruption and grew to love my sisters. Aunt Belle lives with her cat just minutes away from Maison Bean and is part of my patchwork daycare. Aunt Sissy had a cat, but it ran away. She is a free spirit who is not inhibited by the dictates of social convention. She lives in town with her boyfriend Buzz.
Hyacinth. Once upon a time Hyacinth Bean was a pampered pekingnese. She wore rhinestone collars and took road trips in her mommy’s convertible. She visited the puppy parlor monthly and snoozed her mornings away on a leather ottoman at the front door awaiting the arrival of the mailman who always dropped a Milkbone down the slot with the day’s mail. Life was good. But one day Papa moved in with two mongrels. The mailman was assigned another route, and her mother traded in her convertible for a Honda and bore two aliens. But Hyacinth adapted to her new life with her usual bitchy aplomb and took up residence under the Bean highchair where she maintains a spotless floor. Hyacinth is 10.
Rooster Bean is a confused terrier. He has one brain cell who was named Ping once when Papa and I were drinking Margaritas, but that’s another story. When the backdoor opens, Rooster thinks he’s a thoroughbred at the downs. He gives an excited whinny and flies off the steps landing in the grass where he remembers that he’s a rat terrier. Since there are no rats in the yard, he goes after the bushy tailed rodents that eat my bird food and who sometimes take up residence in my attic. The squirrels are used to the drill and taunt Rooster as they scurry up the trees, and Rooster barks his head off like he’s done something great. Rooster is 11 and desperately needs doggy Prozac.