Monthly Archives: January 2009

Praying for no litter

28 January 2009

Miranda has been rocking out to Guitar Hero. She formed a band. She strums and thrashes. And she has found Livin’ on A Prayer. NO!!! Not Bon Jovi! It is on TV. It is on her MP3 player. It is in my car! No!!!

* * *

The fall journals came home yesterday. A selection of my favorites:

For the writing prompt: “My favorite animal is a _________ because…”

She chose a panda bear.


Panda bears live in China and China is my favorite chuchery [country]. They eat bamboo a really rare plant. Panda bear’s are white and black those are really common colors. Panda bears are on the endangderd list.

* * *

“If I could be the president…”


I would not litter. I would make good chioses. I would make a couple new laws. I would keep the conchery clean.

* * *

“What would happen if children ruled the world?”


Grown ups would haft to go to school. Each ice cream factory would haft to make 15 different new kinds of ice cream. Nobody could litter. Kids could have any kind of pet they wanted. Cloes would only cost 10 cents. Every person in the world would be happy.

* * *

“This is how I feel about homework”


I kind of like homework. I like anything but math homework. Soisal studies homework is fun. I sometimes haft to remind my parents about homework. I sometimes forget my homework.

* * *

I didn’t know litter worried Miranda so much. I did know she wants a pet very much and I am holding back her dreams.  Her spelling has improved greatly.

Yo Momma

28 January 2009
Comments Off on Yo Momma

My mom retired earlier this month. We have been enjoying our vacation. All of the pent up projects are bursting forth. The basement has been our first target. It is going well.  As we work in the basement, Henry has been cramming as much Wii time in as he thinks we won’t notice. When it is time to take off the numchuk or to change the game or to read the missive from Mario, Henry yells “Mom!” When he needs milk, he yells “Mom!” When he wants to share a rambling story involing ninjas, cats or hamsters, he yells “Mom!” Both of the older kids will call my mom “Mom” and me “Grandma.” It happens. It isn’t a big deal. Just like I was horribly embarrassed when I called my 3rd grade and 5th grade teachers Mom without thinking. We just answer.

Henry has decided that just answering is not OK. When he yells “Mom!” he wants his real mom, the one who had the fat belly, the one who gave birth to Arabella. He has been touching the mole on my face when he goes on and on about Mario so I would suspect that will be part of my description soon. His real mom is the only one who should answer. It takes everything not to laugh. His real mom was busy, but if you’re patient, she’ll get to it.


The other day Henry said

“___tges are silly”

Me: witches?

H:  bridges! Bridges are silly.

Me: What? Why?

H: We don’t need bridges. You can swim across the water.

Me: What about cars?

H: Well, maybe not those bridges. But rope bridges. Those are silly.


26 January 2009
Comments Off on Fabulous

I had a dream the other night that was so surreal when I woke up I wrote it down. Not that all dreams aren’t surreal. I will preface it to say Phineas and Ferb is our new family show. “We’re getting the band back together” is one of my favorite episodes. One of the bandmates, Bobby Fabulous, has become a hairdresser. In my dream, I went to see cartoon Bobby after my last haircut. I complained that it didn’t look like I had an $80 haircut. I have been flat-ironing my hair and in my dream, I had them wavy natural, not smooth. Bobby played with my hair and said soothingly, no, not an $80 haircut. It looks like an $120 haircut. It is so fabulous you don’t even need to style it.

I don’t believe Bobby Fabulous, in my dream or in Danville. Or even Bobby Fabulous as the embodiment of my id. Super ego?

I did get a haircut at a real salon the other day. I had previously tried to get my haircut twice at strip mall salons. I seem to have lost the critical language that convinces a stylist to actually cut my hair, much less shampoo and style it. The salon experience was fabulous. And I left with a nice cut for much less than $80. I have been running out of time to flat iron it. I think some part of me would encourage me to find the time.

And back to the kids

21 January 2009

Miranda got to watch the important half hour of the Inauguration yesterday at school. I was pleased. She was happy. At bedtime, after fretting about spa night at the upcoming Brownies half sleepover, Miranda’s thoughts turned to President Obama’s daughters. Did they live in the White House? Could they have whatever kind of bed they wanted? Like one with a top on it? A canopy, I asked? Yes. But what about a waterbed? Could they have waterbeds? I said no, the risk of a leak was too much of a risk for a historic house like the White House. She was nonplussed, but I think less inclined to want to live in the White House.

When I recounted the story to Rob, he said he thought the Obama girls could have waterbeds. The world of bedding was open to them.

I am unconvinced. And if denying the Obama daughters a hypothetical waterbed means I will have to less frequently deny Miranda a real waterbed, I am comfortable with that.

Miranda has decided she wants to work for the president when she grows up. Her first instinct was as an interpreter. But the lack of (another) language skills did make her think again. I am a tad bit sad that she doesn’t seem to want to be the president. But my thoughts did drift to internships and how working for the president was a broad and fabulous goal.

As long as the president is a Democrat.

And in other moments that amused me:

Henry is obsessed with being a teenager. Every time we get in the car, he asks if he can drive when he is a teenager. When he gets stuck in a Mario game, he claims he’ll conquer the game when he is a teenager.


Henry: Can teenagers cook?

Me: yes

Henry: Is Papa a teenager?

Me: <giggle> No. No. Papa is not a teenager.

I think I forgot to mention he could cook.

What a day

20 January 2009
Comments Off on What a day

Watching the Inauguration of Pres. Barack Obama has been fascinating. Inspiring. What a momentous day. I understand the impulse of millions to stand there. To be there. To be on the mall, watching, waiting, witnessing. I have so much hope. I respect Pres. Obama and I don’t think he won’t misstep, that he won’t err, that his decisions would always be my own. But I know he is a smart man, a brave man, an honorable man.

I am sick, a head cold/sinus thing. It kept me up last night – probably more awake than any night since I was in denial about being in labor with Arabella. I am glad I didn’t have any ambitions to watch the inauguration in a crowd. Sitting on the couch, sniffling, tearing up from watching the coverage of a president I believe in. I don’t think it will make the best story to tell Bella or Henry — but they’re watching with me.  And I hope that I’ll have reason to tell them about this inauguration. Not for its historical first-ness, but for its goodness.

And I hope that I am feeling better before we know what the first 100 days of Obama will bring. (This is whiny of me, I have been sick for less than 24 hours. And we have escaped illness this fall/winter. And Bella is less sick than I am. And my mom is home to take care of us all. But sickness makes you lose your perspective, doesn’t it? I don’t know if Bush was the worst president ever or merely in the bottom 10, but I know that we have had a national sickness. It has blinded us to our unity as Americans, it has distorted out values and our ability to communicate. And more than the war or the torture or the international ire or the backward policies on the environment, energy, and human rights…I am glad that Bush is leaving office and we can move on.)

So trendy

16 January 2009
Comments Off on So trendy

I didn’t expect to be trendy in 2009. It has happened before–to date my desire for a third child fit into the ~2007 trend that 3 is the new 2.  But having my parents move in with us is a certifiable NYTimes anecdote-trend. Take some wealthy exceptions doing it fabulously. Add to it Pres-elect. Obama’s mother-in-law moving into the White House. I may have missed Lisa Belkin writing about it, but I think it is still a trend. And that I read the New York Times often.

EDITED TO ADD: I knew I had one more point of anec-data: Marvin, the daily comic. He maternal grandparents  moved in this year. Their move was tied to the economic bust, not as a loving help, but still–multi-generational households at work and play.

My parents built an addition to the house we bought. And my parents are retired and I am a freelance worker, who mostly stays home with kids. I think the NYTimes anec-trend is more about the mom who serve as child care and household management so her daughter can fully participate in her career, without having a stomach flu knock her to the mommy track.

Thinking about it this way, I think I should get a job as soon as possible. Or at least when Bella weans. Or when she’s a year. Or definitely when she goes to preschool.

I certainly think being home with my parents reduces the tedium of staying at home. I can list all of the good things–the children get oodles of quality time with their grandparents, we aren’t paying for duplications of services like newspapers and cable and telephone. Even gas and electric–one bill, even in a larger house, is smaller that our two bills were previously. And I enjoy the time with them.

While 2009 is going to be Frugality 2009! (if I say it often enough, I’ll stop cruising slickdeals, right?), I do suspect it will be Work More, Sarah, 2009! as well. Do I actively seek more freelance work? Get an office job? Try a class?

Looking Zoo

15 January 2009
Comments Off on Looking Zoo

Last night when trying to out Henry to bed, he could not stop talking. My favorite was his query over whether he liked a petting zoo better than a looking zoo. On the one hand, you can pet the animals at a petting zoo. But on the other hand, a looking zoo has more to see.

Miranda has been eating the biscotti from Texas. She can’t remember how to say biscotti, so sheh as asked for the pisscotti, biscuit-oti, scooby-ti…

We’re going into day 2 of  “It is too cold to send the kids to school even” 2009. This makes an improvised 4 day weekend. Heaven help us.

(I have been working on cooking up this new blogging thing. Sorry to harsh your mellow or mess up your bookmarks.)

Rob’s musical taste is an Exclusive Company grab bag

11 January 2009
Comments Off on Rob’s musical taste is an Exclusive Company grab bag

So for Christmas, Rob got Guitar Hero World Tour. I think he suggested I would like the music more than I have. Guitar is not my favorite thing and honestly, I am at fault here, expecting Guitar Hero to have more for me. Harp Hero woudl have been more like it.

Rob has been playing The Joker by Steve Miller. A lot. So when we went to get hair cuts on Friday night, he went to the Exclusive Company. He found a Steve Miller CD for $4, which seemed a coup. We got hair cuts and he was telling me about the grab bag. I love grab bags. There is nothing more alluring than whatever crap the store can’t sell wrapped up and sold, sight unseen. What hidden treasure will it be? This seems to be genetic–my mom and Miranda also love grab bags.

Rob told me about the $4 grab bags–10 CDs or DVDs! In a black paper bag! I begged to know what he had gotten. But Rob is not addicted to grab bags and he has better adapted to Frugality 2009! than I have. We decided the grab bag was too cheap to ignore. We returned, bought the first bag, went to the car. I couldn’t even wait until we stopped for coffee.

The first CD was the best 45s of 1960-66. We picked out 203 songs we might have paid $0.69 each for on iTunes. OK, we’re doing OK.

The second CD was the Steve Miller band. The same CD Rob had bought from the Exclsuive Company. For $4.

I couldn’t stop laughing. I am still laughing when I think about it.

CD’s 3-10 featured a Soul II Soul CD that Rob owned on cassette in HS, The Best of the Doobies that we have at home already, some Stevie Wonder covers, Will Smith Wild Wild West era, and some other stuff.

I can’t wait to go back.

Blogging Software

8 January 2009
Comments Off on Blogging Software

January brings out the resolution in a girl. Blogging software always makes me a little sad, like I am taking the easy way out. Nuking the food instead of baking it. I wonder if other (potentially) labor saving devices throughout history have had the same effect. I learned HTML in Notepad, without any WYSIWYG editors. And then I had Pico–editing live on the server. When I gave in to Dreamweaver, I was suspicious, nervous, doubtful.  And now I respect it, even if it is still frustrating at times. I feel married to Dreamweaver. And now this easy little tart comes along. Oh Word Press. I flirted with Movable Type, until a disaster in hosting lost its password, never to be recovered.And went back to Dreamweaver, dependable, solid, capable of everything and anything.

That Movable Type experience shows me that Google loves blogging software. Those posts, which aren’t any better written, more exciting or better illustrated than my newer posts, get hits every day.

Why do I care? Am I after ad revenue, from my Reitman & Mueller-esque 7 listeners? Seems doubtful. But who knows? Just as banging your clothes on a rock by the river was replaced by the wringer washer, we now have a fancy front-loader. And soon I’ll have an RSS feed. If only Samsung created blogging spftware, I might feel better about this.

Good God! Where’s the spellcheck????

17 weeks

6 January 2009
Comments Off on 17 weeks

Bella is 17 weeks old today. We’re cruising toward 4 months on Friday. She is a giggling, smiling, sleeping wonder. She slept 8 hours at night, 2 nights in a row. I woke up more than she did. So did Henry one night and Miranda the other.

Arabella has been pulling herself up. Her ab muscles rock. She would like to think that she can balance and sit. She can’t, quite yet. But it is coming. Her high chair arrived today. I think I love it. She tried pears today. Rice cereal is good. She liked the taste of pears. Let’s hope it doesn’t make her grumpy later on, as applesauce did.

Bella is smiley and happy. She wakes up happily. She sucks her hands, her thumb, your thumb, her pacifier. She sleeps in her crib, in the small crib downstairs, tucked in bed with me. She nurses well. She prefers breast milk to formula. She tolerates the kids jumping near her better than I. She likes kids, dogs and older people. She makes it clear without screaming that she is ready to eat, sleep or have a diaper change. I think I sympathize with old wives of yore–I am nervous to say so many nice things about this delightful baby. What if she gives up sleeping? Egads.

Miranda went back to school yesterday. Henry went back to preschool. Life is flowing on. I am not doing especially well on any new year’s resolutions re: diet or budget. I am not failing spectacularly. For this week, that’s good enough.

Next Page »