Friday, November 30, 2007

Sarah Who

I sent my kid to daycare looking like a normal 16-moth-old.

They sent her home looking like a Who.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Tragedy and theivery

I'm feeling a bit depressed today because, I know some of you will really feel my pain on this one, my Kitchenaid stand mixer has STOPPED WORKING. Yes, gentle readers, you read that correctly. It's quit on me. The last batch of bagels (thanks for the sugar suggestion, Sheep, it was marvelous) really put the hurt on it and I think it's slipped into a coma. It will work with nothing in it. But the girls and I were making chocolate chip cookies the other night and when we tried to mix up just butter and sugar it refused. We'll have to take it to the small-appliance doctor. I hope it can be saved but if it can't, I will replace it with one with a bigger motor. I plan to make a lot of bagels.

As if that weren't sad enough, the garbage disposal has also died. Time to start composting, I guess.

To cheer myself up I'm stealing a meme from Epiphany, which, coincidentally, my Plaid Sheep friend also just stole, I noticed when I linked to her up there. I don't usually do the memes but part 6 of her dad's never-ending meme struck a cord so here we go:

51. When did you go to your first funeral?
I was 22 by the time I attended my first funeral. My friend Gayle's fiance, Patrick, killed himself. Judy and I had spent the entire night with Gayle, waiting for word on him because although he shot himself with a shotgun, he didn't die right away. It was all very terrible. Gayle went to work the very next day, and out that night. Judy and I kept waiting for her to have some sort of grieving breakdown but if she did, we never witnessed it. I honestly think we were both sadder.

52. How old were you when you first moved away from your hometown?
Eighteen! So long, suckers! Don't get me wrong, I love my hometown of Woodstock, VA. Beautiful place. Some of the most wonderful people I've ever known came from there. But please don't make me live there.

53. Who was your first grade teacher?
Mrs. Richards. We moved from Indiana after I finished first grade. She gave me a Frances book. I forget which one she gave me when we moved, but for Christmas she gave me "Frances Gets a Baby Sister" which was really sweet of her because all I wanted for Christmas was a baby sister. I got in trouble in her class for writing "To hell with mathwork" on my math paper. I'd seen "To hell with housework" on Mrs. Emory's refrigerator and asked her what it meant. She told me it meant she didn't like housework. No one ever asked me why I wrote that on my paper. Thus began my passion for correcting the education system...

54. Where did you go on your first airplane ride?
I went with my mom to Lowell, MA to visit my grandparents. She gave me Dentine gum to chew during takeoff and landing so my ears wouldn't hurt and she let me sit in the window seat. I remember the sight of the tiny lights of the cities below us. My grandfather took us mushroom hunting and every time the car would go over a hill (remember, I lived in Indiana at the time) I'd say "Wheeeeeeeeeeeeee!" at the top of my lungs. Mom said "Lisa, please stop that!" and Grampy said "Oh leave her alone, she's fine" thus endearing himself to me forever.

55. When you snuck out of your house for the first time, who was it with?
I don't remember but it was probably Anni. Possibly Barbara Hollifield.

56. Who was your first best friend and are you still friends with them?
Anni. We met in Mrs Gnegy's 3rd grade class. We were buds all through school, kept in touch while in college, took a cross country trip together after college, went to Europe together in grad school and I just talked to her on Tuesday. She's doing well with the brand new baby.

57. Where did you live the first time you moved out of your parents’ house?
Johnson Hall at Virginia Commonwealth University with Julee Myerpeter who was a consummate slob but who very specifically kept her filth on HER side of the room, God bless her.

58. Who is the first person you call when you have a bad day?
Jeremiah. But it should be noted that he is also the first person I call when I have a good day.

59. Whose wedding were you in the first time you were a bridesmaid or a groomsmen?
Keith and Ellen's wedding. I was the maid of honor. I was just a 14-year-old punkass kid and so I had no idea what the duties of a maid of honor really were. It was a nice wedding, though. My mom made the cake (after swearing she'd never make any of our wedding cakes) and worked diligently to make the colors match the dresses exactly. It was perfect. But it was an outdoor spring wedding and after the cake sat outside in the sun it all faded and was completely white by the time we ate it. Tasted, great, though.

60. What is the first thing you do in the morning?
Wonder where I am.

61. What was the first concert you attended?
Ub40. They played at James Madison. I was not high. In retrospect, I was probably the only one there who wasn't.

62. First tattoo or piercing?
Based on my experience with two tiny girls my best guess is my first piercing was my arbitrary, joyous shriek. All my tattoos came from Cracker Jack and I really couldn't say when that started.

63. First celebrity crush?
Burt Ward. I must've been 4 or 5.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

A big, happy congratulations... Anni & Ben on the birth of their son, Cyrus! You may recall knocked-up Anni from such posts as this. Now she's post partum Anni, all aglow and sleep deprived. Cyrus arrived after more than a full day of labor just in time for Thanksgiving dinner last Thursday. Now he's home, getting to know all his peops. Here are a couple photos of the sweet tyke I lifted right off Anni's own site without warning or permission. Happy parenting Anni & Ben!

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Rock star

The pre-bedtime rumpus last night was really nuts, but fun. Maybe it was because I hadn't endured traffic at all and I wasn't making dinner. Or it might have been because I'd thoroughly cleaned the girls' room (4, count `em, 4 tall kitchen trash bags full of stuff will be going to Goodwill). Whatever the cause, I was in no rush to get the kids sleeping and we sang and danced and read stories. It did, in fact, take awhile for them to settle down in there after all the hugs and kisses and " go to sleep" demands.

After yoga and blogging, I sneaked into their room to be sure they were both breathing. Sarah was snuggled in all froggy like, butt in the air (like she just don't care!) and Kate, the rockstar, looked like this:

Monday, November 26, 2007

Jiffy popcorn, I hope she'll share

After we went to the Botanical Gardens it was time to relax at home. We had no exciting plans for mom and dad's last evening in Atlanta, just more left overs and of course, more viewings of How The Grinch Stole Christmas. Just when it looked like we might all get bored, Uncle Steve saved the day. He brought over a pan of Jiffy Pop. Time to show Kate (Sarah could not be induced to care) one of the many wonders of modern science. Though she was slightly wary of the spectacle, the end result was extremely well-received.

(Yes, my kitchen is several different colors. Two and a quarter years ago when we bought the place I started throwing some sample colors up on the hideous yellow walls in there. I couldn't decide what I liked. Then I got pregnant and couldn't paint...and Jeremiah doesn't paint. So it sat like that. Then our attitude was "well, we're about to remodel the kitchen" (no, really, we are) and since then we've waited for plans. Then for a permit. Then for a second survey because the @#$*ing city of Atlanta required a topo version on the site plan. Then we waited for the permit again. Now we're waiting for the contract. It will be multi-colored for awhile. We do not find it hinders the creation of delicious food. Like Jiffy popcorn.)

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Big Girl

We went to the Atlanta Botanical Gardens today (many, many pictures forthcoming), followed by a trip out for a late lunch and, as if that weren't enough, that was followed by a trip to the ice cream & book store. The girls were very tired. Sarah had long-since passed out when Kate was in full meltdown. Jeremiah gave up. He passed bedtime duties off to me as Kate lay crying in her bed "I have to go to the potty!" over and over. For some reason, it wasn't occurring to her to just go to the potty. So I took over. Because this was exhaustion meltdown as opposed to manipulative meltdown, it was pretty easy for me. I managed to get her into the bathroom and onto the potty. To further my own point to her that she needn't wait for a grown-up to assist her in this task, I left her alone with instruction to yell for me if she needed help.

Finally, her tiny coo came from the bathroom. I looked at the doorway from where I sat and saw her poking her head out. I headed in. She'd managed to complete the whole peeing transaction without me and was on to hand-washing. She only wanted company. I washed my hands with her. As we lathered up together she said to me "I'm not a baby anymore." I agreed that was so as I dried my hands. "I'm a big girl" she went on. I agreed once again. Then she turned around and looked at me and asked "are you proud of me?" and I went from patronizing response to nearly crying in a fraction of a second.

I looked at her, this creature who makes us all laugh and who sings at the top of her lungs to her favorite songs (you should hear her do KD Lang's Big Boned Gal) and who is so sweet to her kid sister. I couldn't imagine she'd have to wonder. "Oh, honey" I said, instinctively brushing a hunk of hair from her face "I'm very proud of you." What I really should have asked is - is she proud of me?

Friday, November 23, 2007

Kickin' it old school?

Call me cynical but I found this, with the poofy tulle skirt and all, disturbingly reminiscent of a certain pop diva's 1984 MTV music awards performance.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Eatfest 07

We're not even done eating yet! The pumpkin mascarpone pie is still baking, while we let everything else settle. Everything was delicious today, though the grilled leeks weren't popular. In fairness to the leeks, they were supposed to be smoked, not grilled.

As predicted, there was much sitting around and eating and playing with the wee ones. Kate spent the majority of today being fabulous. Sarah was busy being charming. She danced a lot. At
one point they were dancing together in the TV room. We captured on neither film or video, alas. Trust me on this one, it was sweeter than any pie.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Thanksgiving Eve

Oh, how I love Thanksgiving! I learned about 4 years ago, when we started having Thanksgiving dinner in our own home instead of enduring the travails of visiting others, that I must take the Monday after Thanksgiving off. It's starts tonight - the eve of the big eating day. This year I began by making the ginger cranberry chutney and the maple pecan tart.

Tomorrow I will leap from my bed and start cooking. I will cook all day, and I will eat, and the kids will run around my feet and everyone will sit around chatting and drinking beer (Jeremiah's most recent homebrew is just now ready to be popped open). We'll start the day with just a sour cream coffee cake. I like to keep it down to something this simple because we need to pace ourselves. This year I decided we should eat dinner a little later, like 5, and I'm going to make a beef and barley soup for lunch. The soup bones are in the fridge waiting to lend their flavor to the stock. There will be the peeling and the chopping and the baking and the whole house will smell fantastic.

Then the rest of the weekend I'll feel compelled to be as active as possible to work off the day of senseless eating. And, just because I'm in the swing of it, I'll probably make more stuff. By Sunday evening I'll collapse into bed feeling destroyed. And because I was wise and gave it some thought, I will lounge in bed until the girls force me to get up on Monday. Perhaps I'll use my time off to plan Christmas dinner...

Happy Thanksgiving!

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

What goes on in there?

Yesterday morning I wandered into the women's bathroom down on the floor everyone euphemistically calls the "ground" floor instead of calling it what it is...the dank, windowless basement where we keep all the IT and accounting people. Here is what I saw:

Under normal circumstances I would not post about work but this made my Monday. I've decided my new term for going to the bathroom is going to be "shaking out some cheese". After all, I think it's time for cheese to get a new reputation in that department.

What really impressed me about this, though, was that when I went back into my locked, dark area and said to my coworker 'Can I borrow your phone so I can take a picture of the can of grated parmesean cheese that's sitting on the back of the toilet in the bathroom?' she asked not one question and without even really looking up from what she was doing, handed me her phone. I don't know why, but somehow this entire experience just imbued me with renewed love for my fellow man.