Mornin. Fall is in the air here: my mother back to driving the bus, the melons ripe on the vine, the early hours hat-and-sweater-cool. As much as I’m enjoying these long days of hanging with my two children (in the photo above they are donning “sailor caps”), I'm also counting the days until Avah goes back to school. Four mornings a week of preschool, during which time I imagine taking walks, cleaning the house and (gasp!) writing. I have two stories coming out in publications this fall/winter: one in Shenandoah and one in The Alaska Quarterly. Those future publications are little jewels in these long, humid, drawn-out, love-soaked mothering days, reminding me of my other work. They keep me standing upright in my weakest hours. They also make me happy for my children; I wrote those stories while Avah was very young. I hope to write (and finish) many more while Owen Cricket is young. Stories are my way of turning the raw fabric of this life over and under and making sense of it. They are my way of revisiting the past and imagining the future. They are my way of living all the other lives I have not lived. And so, ten days from now, when I have four hours a morning, during which Owen Cricket will (cross-my-fingers) take a long nap? This mother plans to sprout a couple of weak, filmy, and determined long-lost wings.