Sunday, April 30, 2006

weeds (not the 1960s version, although I guess I can't be sure)

We've lived here for about 2 1/2 months, and I've been whining about our yard since the first box crossed the threshold. We are lucky enough to have a whole 1/2 acre to ourselves, and the point of that was to have plenty of room for our toddler to run, play, etc without crashing into a neighbor's house. Unfortunately, if he ran and played with the wild abandon I had envisioned, he'd likely end up a bloody heap after tripping on the spare nails, wire and other debris the previous owner left for us. I simply cannot stand it any longer, so we're off to find a landscaper. Which is not that big of a deal, except I hate trying to find a professional in an area I'm not familiar with Our neighbors are pretty much your typical do-it-yourselfers and their yards are lovely. Our yard looks like someone died and the house hasn't sold yet. I'm sure people drive by thinking, "Those weeds are 5 feet tall! Is there even a house on that lot, or is that some sort of horticulture experiment by a college that recently dropped its horticulture program?"
My husband, while a perfectionist in so many, many areas, could not care less about the landscaping situation we have on our hands. I come home and run in the door, hoping no one I know finds out that this is my house and reports me to the city's blight department. It's finally nice weather (which is wonderful and this is in no way a gripe about that but), the earth is producing weeds at a rapid rate. Anyway, I'm getting off my keister and making a few executive decisions. Our yard will be fixed and look somewhat presentable. There, I said it. Since you read it, I'm committed.

Wednesday, April 19, 2006


It is the most amazing thing when one's own offspring shows a sense of wonder at the world. The other day, I picked up *Hush*, a CD by Bobby McFerrin and Yoyo Ma, who are two of the best musicians I've heard. Boy #1 was captivated. It was the coolest thing to watch. Only one song has actual words, the rest is a demonstration of Bobby McFerrin's vocal abilities to mimic instruments, animals, etc., and it was so incredible to see this 2 1/2 yr old get it. When I have studied music, I had instructors that taught me the moods of the music. I'm sure there was a time when I just innately felt those things, but that was sort of instructed out of me. I learned to trust the teacher rather than my musical intuition. But that was what amazed me about this musical situation and Boy #1: there was no explanation necessary. He laughed when the music was comical, he got serious at the "right" moments. One of those moments that made me say, this boy is connected to the world. This is quite possibly the least eloquent blog I've ever written, but I can't really express it. I'm awe-struck.

Monday, April 17, 2006

Do you know these people?

Sylvia Pojoli must be on vacation. Bruce Conweiser is covering the floods in eastern Europe and the first time I heard him I wondered if David Sedaris is moonlighting as a news reporter because their voices are almost identical. I kept waiting for the punchline as he talked about rising waters in Serbia. So, is the jury still out or do I listen to too much NPR? Scary.

Friday, April 14, 2006

bye bye baby bjorn!

I have recently found that when I'm dealing with painful-scary-stressful stuff, I often respond with an overwhelmingly positive attitude about random stuff to distract myself, which means I don't just procrastinate in practical matters but in emotional ones too. That said, this is a super-happy post so don't read on if you'd rather not feel my unpain.
I posted earlier about this (hopefully) great new way to carry my baby! It arrived in the mail today (finally!!) and IT IS AMAZING!!! It's called a mei tai carrier (aka ABC, or Asian Baby Carrier) and it is comfy comfy comfy, cute, and made of cloth, therefore folding into a little square when not in use. My first was a dream in a sling, but this one is an "up" baby, and the sling was a way to relieve my arms a bit since he sort of stood in it, but at under 2 months, didn't really hold his weight. It was a one-hand-sort-of-free carrier instead of two-hands free, which was great, but not optimal. Now I know what I'm getting for my next baby shower gift! Check it out! You can see his little leg peeping out, but he is as comfy as if I'm holding him. He's little enough now that the fabric that goes over him is ample enough to provide a sunshade, which was terrif., as TODAY THE SUN VISITED NORTHERN CALIFORNIA which was also glorious! If you too, dear reader, would like to purchase such a dreamy baby holder, go to and be delighted like I am!

Thank you, hotmail.

What does it say about me when one of my dearest friends and I only talk about 3 times a year on the phone? We hardly ever visit in person due to geographical location, kids making travel tricky and lack if cash making travel impossible. She called this morning and it sort of made me wonder... Maybe I'm a great friend-from-afar. Maybe it's easier to put up with me just a little rather than on a daily-weekly-monthly basis. Or, maybe, since we are the pick-up-where-we-left-off kind of friends, it's because we are both phone-haters. I don't know why/how that happened for me, since my sister and mother can attest to the hours upon hours I spent on the phone with my friend Kelly talking about ABSOLUTELY NOTHING when I was about 13 yrs old or so. (Really, how DOES that happen? We went to the same school and had practically all our classes together? I must have had a lot more going on then than I do now, I have NO IDEA what I'd say on the phone to anyone I spent all day with.) But fast forward to now, it's all I can do to pick up the phone and arrange a play date or call my inlaws (who I really love). And these are people I genuinely like and care for. If it weren't for email, I'm sure there are those who would doubt my continued existance on this planet.

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Glub, glub

Is it just me, or is that water rising up to my knees? I thought we Californians paid more for our houses, taxes and everyother thing under the clouds because of the lovely WEATHER HERE. Another grey day here and I think I'm drowning. I don't know that I've heard that there's any sign o fit letting up either! Yipes. Am I really in Oregon after all?

Monday, April 10, 2006

My worst nightmare realized!

This just in! According to fashionistas everywhere, tight jeans with tapered ankles (circa 1989) are back in! Get out your old Jordache model and remind yourself how to turn up the collar on your pink Izod. These jeans are to be worn with pumps. Soon we'll all be singing to Olivia Newton John and shouting, "Long live legwarmers!!" from the rooftops!

Sunday, April 09, 2006

Peace and quiet

Not to add more doom and gloom to this already way-too-cloudy world, but a friend and I had a sad realization when I visited a her last week.
I went to her house which is situated about 2 miles as the crow flies from a military air base. My 2 yr old son was with me, and he's always amazed me, because not a lot startles or scares him to tears. Not a jumpy kid, that one. But as we walked out of her house to our car, two very loud military jets zoomed overhead and he LOST IT. The noise was pretty incredible, but it had been a very long time since I'd seen him that shook up. My very astute friend made the comment that there are kids who live with this every day of their lives. For Iraqi and Afganistani children military planes passing overhead, grenades being launched hither and yon and military personnel are a regular part of their lives. I'm so glad for my son that military planes are unusual enough to scare the daylights out of him. His reality is (relative) peace and quiet. He's never had to try to go to sleep while his city was bombed or his home was searched or while his dad was walking around with an AK-48 (or maybe a Kalashnikov) slung around his shoulder. I know there are those with their reasons to go to war, but destroying a child's sense of peace and innocence is a good enough reason to stay out of it.

Friday, April 07, 2006

Creating a Stress-Free Life

...any ideas? :)

Actually, it's really not that bad--not in light of what *really* could be bad (Jay Are's recent post--my brain keeps circling back to those serious, unfair, out-of-sequence illnesses).

No one's even looked at our house yet. Okay, it's only been on the market one week--but not even a peek? We've painted, we've cleaned and cleaned and taken multiple loads of accumulated stuff to Salvation Army, we've weeded and put down 5 yards of mulch.

Come on over and make us an offer!

Thursday, April 06, 2006

I hate taxes

I hate them. Mostly because they produce inordinate amounts of paperwork, all of which requires several forests of trees sacrifice their carbon-monoxide reducing selves. But I especially hate taxes this year because it has created a situation which served as a reminder of how poorly my grey matter is functioning.
We went to Saint Joseph, our previous hometown, for my husband's visit with Super Taxman. I had one job and ONE JOB ONLY whilst he was occupied, and that was to return our PO Box key to the post office. It's been in our possession since we moved in September and we've not paid the rent for the box since approximately June. My other intent was to see a few friends along the way, giving Boy 1 a chance to run around after sitting in the car, and giving my friends opportunity to gawk at Boy 2 since he's as cute as the bee's knees. BUT! My primary purpose of being in the car was to return said key. And I. Completely. Forgot.
My husband, being Mr Responsible, does not understand these kinds of mental bellyflops, and to be honest, this one puzzles even me. Can I still blame pregnancy? Stay-at-home-mom-hood? My lack of friends in Fillville, our new hometown, which makes me absolutely crave conversation with people I know and love? Argh. Needless to say, my blunder created an evening of icy relations and I have no explanation for myself. It is one more reason to hate taxes.

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

A most wonderful time of the night

It's that wonderful time of the night when my work is (sort of) done for a few hours... one toddler in bed, one baby gleefully kicking on the couch (which, after a day of hod-me-or-I'll-really-wail, feels like bliss) and me at the computer. The schedule my dear husband is on (48 hrs at work, then 96 hrs at home) is quite nice for me. In an earlier post I had referenced missing my alone time... and now I have it on the evenings that he's at work, and I really, really, really enjoy it. Is that a bad thing, to relish time away from one's spouse? It might be because every single evening that he is home, we spend doing something important... getting tax documents together, going over our budget, or other things that are about as enjoyable as eating sand. Not to mention the fact that my beloved has been stressed out lately (which was not aided by UCLA's loss last night) because he's now on a fire truck (yes, there is a dramatic difference between a truck and an engine) and he has to learn the ropes under the watchful eyes of several chiefs who happen to have offices at his new station.
So here I am eating chocolate chips (since we have no other sweets in the house and I've done nothing but crave sugar since the day I found out I was pregnant) and blogging away. Ah.

Sunday, April 02, 2006

The not-so-urban jungle.

Our yard is a jungle. We've had so much to do these last two months, I haven't had a chance to get out and weed it, and now it is so overgrown, it's overwhelming to even start. Argh. The weeds are HUGE and not exactly willing to give up their weedy lives and succumb to my pulling them out, so it's not a fun task. Bottom line is, anyone with a hoe, rake, trowel and garden gloves is welcome to come my way. Although, I'm too embarassed about our yard to have anyone over, so I take back the invite. Enjoy your lovely manicured lawns, wherever they are!