Monthly Archives: February 2010

this post will probably not post

24 February 2010
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This has been a day of small hiccups. It just didn’t even seem worth trying to get anything done. I got side-tracked this morning and forgot to eat breakfast. Henry forgot his gloves. I didn’t notice that I Henry forgot his gloves until he was taking his cold little hands out of the car. On the day he has cold hands, we got to school 4 minutes earlier than normal, so he had 5-6 minutes of cold hands rather than the normal 1-2 minutes of warm hands before he goes in. I went home. I got the gloves. By the time I got back, the kids had gone in.  I had to park, walk the gloves all the way to the kindergarten rooms. I came home, decided to go to Target. Target had only 2 of the 3 things I went to get. But they had Kindergarten Cop for $4.75.

I came home, dyed my hair, started reading a Jennifer Cruisie novel. This was the highlight of my day. Then I was off to a doctor’s appointment at 1. Henry was seeing the same doc at 3:45. I didn’t notice earlier in the week when I could have combined those appointments.  After the doctor, I went to Walgreens. They had the missing item from Target. I finally got a prescription filled that I have been trying to have approved for 2 weeks. Another small plus – 90 day supply for $30 for a name brand drug. Even though it was to my favor, the line on my receipt that said my insurance saved me $370 seems ridiculous. I don’t want to pay $400 for the medication. But I hope my insurance company doesn’t pay that much either. Or that Walgreens doesn’t eat the $370.

I head home, make the homemade blueberry mini muffins I promised Miranda for her half day birthday at school tomorrow. Yesterday, I decided I was too lazy to follow a recipe from scratch. I wanted a mix. The first mix had lard in it.  No. All the rest had partially hydrogenated oil. Ugh. I buy the Hodgins Mill Whole wheat blueberry muffin mix. Whole wheat. Some molasses. Add egg and sugar and milk. And then I give in and buy some of the Betty Crocker.

The whole wheat muffins are so stereotypically hard and chewy that I think I could make crunchy granola out of them. I made the “regular” muffins as well. And then the plan to give each kid 2 mini muffins fell apart. And I was out of butter. Despite 2 store trips, no butter. Did I mention we had a miserable whiny snow  all day? It was messy and wet and I just didn’t want to go out again. My mom rescued us by heading to the grocery store and getting grapes – so each kid will get 9 grapes and 1 mini muffin. Happy half Birthday.

I get 39 rock muffins. And 35 fluffy muffins. I head to school to pick up Henry for his doctor’s appointment. On most pickups, Henry is sitting in the office, dressed in his boots and snowpants and hat and gloves. Waiting. Not today. I am a bit later in the day, there is no parking. I double-park with my flashers. And Henry isn’t there. The office confirms Henry should be there. I head down to his room. I grab all of his stuff and pull him from class.

The doctor’s appointment was fine. We head home. We see Henry and Miranda’s bus. And after we’re home and Bella is watching at the window…the bus with Miranda on it? Doesn’t stop at our house. We wait. It circles the block. Then it stops.

Henry got in trouble for talking 3 times at school today. Miranda couldn’t sleep between staying up later than normal watching American Idol and thinking about her half birthday. Arabella took a later nap and didn’t want to go to sleep. I should be trying to sleep right now. But it just hasn’t been that kind of day.

trying to be amused

21 February 2010
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Having lost the comfort of my laptop, I have spent more time reading. Sadly, not more time laughing. I finished Pillars of the Earth. I’ve now book clubbed The Help twice. And I started reading Brave New World again. Just to be cheerier.

The Help really bugged me. I think it bugged me not because it wasn’t well written, it wasn’t an interesting story, or not even that it wasn’t the kind of story we should read. It bugged me because it reminded me that we didn’t all learn civil rights in history in high school or college. And if this book was a suggested book for high schoolers, I’d say bravo. I guess having books bug you isn’t a bad thing, as long as you think about why that might be. I am ready to be done thinking about it for a while.

I’d really rather talk about the ideas it raised for me about child care. What does it mean – what the the legacies of having child care being treated as such a lowly job? Poor pay, terrible hours, impossible wells of patience and care for children that may love you and look down at you, all at once. I don’t have an answer, other than the suspicion that it could tie into the stay at home / working mom battles of viewpoint.   And I want to know about the next 10 years. In the early 1960s, before the Voting Rights act and the Civil Rights Acts, segregation was legal. By the early 1970s, it wasn’t legal. What did that transition look like? What are those stories? Miss Hilly was evil in The Help…did she learn to keep quiet by the 80s? Racism certainly isn’t dead today, but it is more subtle. I have to think that’s better, it just doesn’t quite seem good enough.

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In other news…We went to the children’s museum today. There is a cow, a horse, a silo and a corn field sign. You can velcro the corn to the field. Then pick it. Drop it in the silo. Then wheel barrow a load over the animals. Henry walked each piece of corn from the silo to the field. 20+ pieces of corn. A little girl came along, saw the corn stuck to the field and figured out it was to be picked. After watching Henry cross the 10 feet from the silo to the field 20 times at least, I was amused to see the little girl walk over, grab as many ears of corn as she could hold in her arms, approximately 12, and walk over to the cow. Henry was quite outraged.

it may take 18 years

16 February 2010
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I am reading The Pillars of the Earth for a book club. So my skimming may be noticed. But I doubt it. The book is 900+ pages. The scope is huge. I can’t quite claim it is taking away my blogging time, but something is. And a book sounds better than my daily binging on NUMB3RS.

In news of the first order, my laptop’s hard drive died last Monday. I think I am nearly through the 5 stages of grief. I spent 2-3 days in absolute denial – I’ll just run upstairs and check my email. Oh, I’ll check the bills files.  Oh sure, you can play on my laptop, child. In 2005, I lost a computer to a massive hard drive failure, which I have come to think of like heart attacks. Some times, hard drives go bad. And data can be restored. Like a stent. Or a heart replacement. I seem to have really bad hard drive problems – the drive is unusable, the spindle doesn’t spin, there is no Hope.

The 2005 debacle did push me to make backing up my data a higher priority. After sporadic DVD backups, I bought an external hard drive in 2008 or 2009. And it saved me, mostly. I have all of the photos. I lost about  a week, as the hard drive was sending little hard drive signals that it was dying. But I didn’t know it. Despite its SMART system, it didn’t send me a message like “back up all your data, the barbarian horde is coming.” It did keep restarting and had a hard time coming back on.

In January, the family room computer, which was my old desktop computer, had a motherboard problem. (brain tumor?) The hard drives had been flaky and Rob doesn’t have time to build computers anymore. We did the unthinkable to ourselves circa 2000 – we went to Best Buy and bought a clearance desktop. It works. And as I am typing on it right now, it is a good thing in our lives.  But it isn’t my old desktop – it doesn’t have the programs, the bookmarks, the settings of my life. And that’s why I feel so a sea.

This hard drive failure has shown me that having pre-installed software, while convenient, is worthless in so many ways. My laptop is being reborn as Rob’s Ubuntu laptop, mostly because Ubuntu is free and we don’t have a free way to install the Windows Vista license we bought with the laptop. I am taking over Rob’s Windows laptop. I am pleased that Adobe is going to let me re-download my legal copy of Dreamweaver -I have a 3 year time-limit. Still not perfect, but better than the new copy of Office I had to buy for the family room computer. We had legal copies of Office, but not on a disc that I could just install.

This post-mortem excuse-apolooza is not as entertaining as it might be if I had more distance and less rawness. I also got a winter cold the weekend before my laptop died. So I was congested, gooey, feverish and cold, exhausted and drugged up…and having no laptop made me just sad. After a visit to Best Buy (how can this be?), I saw an adorable HP laptop. And the price was almost fair enough. But it turns out for a freelance job, I need to connect with a 32-bit version of Windows. So no new laptop would work. Thank goodness I can take over Rob’s laptop, I guess.

The only file I lost, I think, is my bills files in Excel. For some reason the most recent backup was from August 2009. The vagaries of backup are mysteries I don’t understand. My priorities going forward are definitely to keep up the automatic backups. They saved my bacon. But I have to figure out a way to not lose my software. Maybe I need to rent software? Would that help?  Probably not with an OS…

I have been thinking, so more posts soon. I hope.

up stairs

4 February 2010
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Bella has either said her first two syllable word or her first two word phrase: Up Stairs

She wants to come up too.