Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Tiny Bubbles

Okay, I have raised what must be the most skittish kid on the planet. She is afraid of the blender. Reasonable. She has yet to discover the magic of frozen drinks that make the blender the appliance touched by goodness. She clings to me like a monkey when the vacuum is running. Okay. It's loud and sucks things up. That's totally reasonable. She jumps and whimpers when I rip off a piece of aluminum foil. Sounds sort of like a sharp clap of thunder I suppose. Okay, I'll give her that one, too. But bubbles? COME ON!!!!! I introduced her to bubbles this morning and she whimpered like a beaten puppy and crawled into my space. Maybe it was the timing. She's been wicked clingy all week. Or maybe it's just her nature. But, this is a kid who has no problem repelling off my lap head first. Or screeching at the top of her lungs in the middle of Stop and Shop just 'cause. She was a little more amenable to the bubbles once she saw she had the ability to destroy them. Because that's her favorite pastime-search and destroy. But seriously, who the heck is afraid of bubbles? Where have I gone wrong? We need to get out more. If I get the job I am interviewing for on Friday, she's off to daycare. That might just send her 'round the bend on overload. Poor baby.

Friday, March 23, 2007

These Boots are Made for Walking

Not so much for walking, but sloshing through the mud, actually. Thank you for inviting me to the photo tag, Stephanie. I am sorry it's so late. I am not sure where the last week went.
Anywho, this is an image of the shoes I couldn't live without. The pair of wellies on the left are mine. They are sitting on the sweet grass outside my favorite place on the planet, my husband's family's house in Nova Scotia. They are essential for a place where the precipitation comes in all forms-downpours that make you hold onto your hat, sprinkles that kiss your sunburned face, fog that hangs in the air and clings to your hair. A place where interaction with water is a way of life. Fishing. Sailing. Mossing.
A place where the people took me in like I was one of their own. A place that threw us a surprise wedding reception after a blessing of our vows in their church. A place where I want my daughter to know and love and jump up and down in her seat as we approach, like I used to in Maine with my parents and grandparents. I can't wait to introduce her to the life where wellies are an essential.

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Thursday, March 15, 2007

So Quick, So Easy

The top photo: Millie at 5 weeks looking all cute and adorable and sweet.
The bottom photo: Millie at 6 months ripping the hair out of the Raggedy Ann doll my mom made for me on my 3rd Christmas. She examined her, turned her around and around in her active hands, and then SNAG----wrapped her stealthy fingers around Ann's hair and yanked. Before I could stop her. She's an animal. And we love her. Happy birthday, Millie.

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Friday, March 09, 2007

Toys in the Attic

The 'rents were here this weekend. Watching my dad with Millie makes me want to look for the pod (see photo). This is NOT the man I grew up with. Laughing. Smiling. On the floor. He's like that with all his grandchildren. He cannot get enough of them. It's amazing. And, of course, my hambone of a daughter eats the attention up with a spoon. I don't mean to sound like he was a bad father. Quite the contrary. He was outstanding. He spent a lot of time working his arthitic fingers to the bone to make our lives comfortable and make our community a better place to be. He just never struck me as a kid person. My mom is totally a kid person, so it doesn't surprise me that she fawns all over her, but my father has shocked everyone. Time mellows all. My mom...seriously...she is the baby whisperer. You have a kid that won't sleep? Allow me to give you my mother's phone number. Even my daughter, who scares the crap out of my in-laws, will sleep for my mom. Amazing.

It looks like Toys 'R Us threw up in our living room. The colors and sounds are enough to make my head explode. They are all fantastic and stimulating and age-appropriate, but we have an apartment the size of a postcard. She loves them all, though, and it if it were up to us to purchase things for her to play with, she'd have to be content with an oatmeal cylinder and a wooden spoon. We put about half of them in the attic and I "plan" (aka hope and probably never will) to rotate them in and out to keep them fresh. Most of them were passed down by my very generous sister-in-law who has stellar taste. My mom made her a little clutch quilt with the softest fabric. I may take it bed with me instead. Or just carry it around as a fashion accessory to calm my spastic outbreaks. My undergrads would definitely earn a whole new respect for me, I'm just sure of it. If they can disconnect from their iPods long enough and tear themselves away from the campus newspaper crossword for a second. But that's another rant.

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Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Fat Bottom Girls

There is a photo tag for baby bump shots going around. I have no idea if I'm doing this right or if you need to be invited or if the link will even work, so please forgive my blogging ignorance. I'm not too quick.
This was taken the day before I went into labor with my daughter. It is in the garden behind the Silas Deane House in Wethersfield, Connecticut. It was a gorgeous day and my husband had a few doctor appointments, so he had taken a rare day off. We had lunch on the cove and walked around downtown and fantasized what it might be like to not be poor poor poor and afford a house in a neighborhood like that. Or a neighborhood anywhere.
I can still smell the flowers when I see this photo. Good times.

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Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Who Are You? My 100 Things.

1. I have peed on my boots in the woods at work.
2. I once dated a guy that looked like Elvis. Vegas Elvis.
3. My knees are so scarred from childhood falls that they are the only part of my body that doesn't sunburn.
4. Before I started dating my husband, I was trying to grapple with the thought of never being a mother and had no idea how I was going to be okay with that.
5. I can't decide whether to dye my graying, once-red hair or just go white gracefully.
6. I am a horrible procrastinator when it comes to mailing things. I lived literally around the corner from a post office, yet would drive around with bills to mail in my car for weeks.
7. It's been so long since I have worn makeup that I opened my mascara on Saturday to find it had turned to crust. I still used it anyway. My eyeballs should be falling out any time now.
8. I own more CDs than any sane person should. But my brothers' collections trump mine hands down.
9. The first vinyl album I bought with my own money was Men at Work. Hello 80s!
10. Growing up in Pennsylvania, I always wanted a New England accent like my cousins.
11. I go to school with the nicest woman who happens to be Owen and Luke Wilson's cousin. My husband thought it would be amusing to share with her my hots for Owen.
12. I don't eat red meat, but detest tofu unless the bejeesus is fried out of it at an Asian restaurant. I can't get past the texture.
13. I am easily and continuously surprised by people's capacity to be mean.
14. I think the Chicken Dance ought to be outlawed.
15. I have had a bizarre collection of jobs in my life. "Inventory Specialist"=getting up in the middle of the night and counting how many bumper stickers Hot Topic has in their display case. "Director of Multiple Non-Profits"=Working 80 hours a week for a meager salary I have to raise myself. "After School Program Coordinator"=being shocked that 'kids today' (God, I hate that phrase) have little to no conflict resolution skills. "Deputy Town Clerk"=how I got this one, I'll never know, but it was the ride of my life.
16. My first undergraduate college went bankrupt after the president embezzled 2 billion dollars. And then proceeded to be hired by another small, liberal arts college in Pennsylvania that apparently didn't check references.
17. By training, I am an architectural technician, historic preservationist, architectural historian and archaeologist. And still can't find a decent job.
18. I am the only daughter in a family of four children. My oldest brother is a lawyer, my middle brother a director of golf at a swanky resort in Georgia, and my youngest brother is a medical doctor. Makes for interesting Thanksgiving table talk.
19. I cut my daughter's finger so badly while trimming her nails this weekend that it bled and bled and bled.
20. I obsess over a clean kitchen but can't manage to put my crap away that is strewn all over the house.
21. I am addicted to Shutterfly.
22. I feel guilty every time I blog because I could be using that time to do something more productive. I feel that way every time I take 5 minutes to do something self-indulgent. Like shaving my legs.
23. I can't believe you are still reading. I am utterly boring.
24. I'd give my left arm for a Dunkin' Donuts coffee on a rough day.
25. I have seen Barenaked Ladies in concert more times than I care to admit.
26. One of my goals my freshman year in college was to learn all the words to Billy Joel's We Didn't Start the Fire (sorry, Dad).
27. I am one of 4 redheads in my generation and none of our parents have red hair.
28. My husband and I are addicted to Lost.
29. I would like to kiss on the mouth the person who invented safety swabs. If it wasn't for them, I would have poked Millie in the brain multiple times by now.
30. I can't seem to turn off The Today Show.
31. When did Katie Couric turn into a shrew? Or was she always one and just hid it behind a perky, likeable facade?
32. Meredith Viera is a vast improvement.
33. My daughter likes the texture of my Carhartts.
34. I hope my daughter is the kind of girl who has use for Carhartts rather than stilettos, but she will be what she will be.
35. I can't whistle.
36. But I can roll my tongue.
37. I should be doing schoolwork right now. But I'm half-blogging and half-watching the premiere of The Riches. I love Eddie Izzard.
38. The worst thing about breastfeeding is having to sleep wearing a bra.
39. The worst thing about motherhood is cutting an infant's fingernails.
40. The worst thing about being married is not being able to watch Gilmore Girls without the obligatory eye roll from my husband.
41. If that's the worst part about my marriage, I am the luckiest woman alive. And I am, indeed. 42. If I could have any superpower, it would be to make people be able to feel other people's pain. Not for sadistic purposes but to increase empathy. Know how it actually feels to be in someone's shoes before you judge or call them wimps.
43. I started this list a month ago and I'm only on #43.
44. I have a job interview on Friday. Man, I need this job. Man, I WANT this job. Man, I am completely qualified for this job.
45. It's now a month and a half later, and I still haven't heard about #44.
46. I just read Crazy Bloggin' Canuck's 100 things list (http://crazybloggincanuck.blogspot.com/2006/06/crazy-bloggin-canuck-101.html) and it inspired me to try this again. Or, at least write a few every time I blog.
47. I bought my wedding dress on sale with a coupon at Filene's for $39. That's the kind of gal I am.
48. I'm not sure I am capable of getting my PhD at this point in my life.
49. And that makes me feel like a failure.
50. But, I only have one shot at raising my daughter.
51. And I refuse to fail at that.
52. I have a nephew who is 5 weeks younger than my daughter.
53. My fourth grade teacher, in front of the whole class, told me and another classmate of mine that if there was a fire, he and I would both die because we were too fat to fit out the casement windows. This from a woman built like a Weeble.
54. Twenty-seven years later, if she stepped in front of my car, I would likely run her down in the name of every kid who has been humiliated by their teacher.
55. The other kid died in a drunk driving accident when we were juniors in high school. Our fathers were good friends.
56. My dad was a volunteer firefighter at the time and answered the accident call. Now that I'm a parent I can start to understand the magnitude of what that must have been like for him.
57. I would retire to Nova Scotia given the chance.
58. I think there should be a law against vinyl siding.
59. The smell of warm weather in central Connecticut makes me miss the ocean like I can't even begin to describe.
60. I sobbed hysterically in the movie theater during What Dreams May Come.
61. My husband and I went through our marriage ceremony twice in two different countries.
62. The second time I carried fresh lupines that my husband cut from the side of the road on the way to the church.
63. I wanted to be Janis from The Muppet Show.
64. Part of me still wants to.
65. I like to tell people that my first concert was Tina Turner and Glenn Frey.
66. It was technically Captain and Tenille when I was about 6 with my parents and older brother.
67. My older brother denies it, too.
68. I had a Donny and Marie metal lunchbox as a kid.
69. And a Bee Gees Trapper Keeper in 3rd grade.
70. No accounting for taste.
71. However, I regularly raided my older brother's records and tapes consisting of much cooler artists.
72. I didn't know the Village People were gay until I was about 26 years old.
73. I thought people were booing Bruce Springsteen when I first heard his live stuff at about 9 years old.
74. I blew off a college class to attend a Steely Dan concert with scalped tickets. What a rebel.
75. I saw Bob Dylan in concert on the worst date of my life. He could barely stand up and if it wasn't for the band, no one would have been able to tell what he was singing. I was crushed. But that wasn't even close to the worst part of the evening.
76. I stood at a radio show festival squished among thousands of people in the hot sun for 12 hours once.
77. Without peeing once.
78. I was so dehydrated that my gum turned to powder.
79. It was totally worth it.
80. I'd never do it again.
81. I can't hear Macy Gray or The Coors without thinking about it.
82. I'm so proud of my best friend for surviving it with me.
83. She and I are regularly the oldest people at any given concert we attend.
84. The five shows I will have the DTs over during the summer are Lost, My Name is Earl, Ugly Betty, Desperate Housewives, and The Riches.
85. Only 15 more of these to go. I really can't believe you are still here.
86. My daughter has two teeth.
87. She is scared of paper crinkly loudly.
88. I cried the first time she was fed a bottle of breastmilk.
89. I was obsessed with the Boston Celtics in the mid-80s.
90. One of my favorite authors when I was young was Ezra Jack Keats.
91. I could still tell you where Snowy Day was found in the library.
92. I can't wait to read it to Millie. She got it for Christmas.
93. I love to bake.
94. People are regularly surprised by that.
95. I don't know why.
96. My husband is an excellent cook.
97. But, he hates doing the dishes.
98. My aunt and I have the exact same alarm clock.
99. I hate wearing daytime nursing bras because the straps never stay on my shoulders.
100. Whooooo hoooooo!!!!!!

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Monday, March 05, 2007

Nothing at All

I have nothing at all interesting to write about, but feel sad that I haven't had verbal diarrhea online in a while. So, a few random thoughts for the day.

1. My little brother, who is an MD, thinks he came back from Belize with Cholera. Somehow, I doubt it. More like Montezuma Revenge. But I'm not a doctor. You watch, now that I'm busting his chops, he'll ACTUALLY have Cholera and I'll feel bad. I had it (Montezuma Revenge, not Cholera) in Krakow and thought (or hoped) I might die. Especially in a place that charged you for toilet paper and then just provides 2 squares. I learned to carry tissues. My husband had it after we did research on an island with no potable water where the "well" water was laden with sheep shit and, occasionally, sheep carcasses. Ah, good times.

2. I am watching and waiting. Obama and Clinton are going to either implode separately or ruin each other and then Gore is going to slip into the race and dominate. I am ALL for a woman president, but Hilary isn't it. If I have to look at her smarmy face and watch her run this country farther into the toilet for 4 years, I'm moving to Canada. Which would be nice for many reasons. I love Obama, but I don't think he has enough experience yet. If he continued to do the job he's doing, I'd certainly vote for him in 8 or even maybe 4 years. But not now.

3. Police tickets go on sale in 33 minutes. I may have to hide the phone from myself to not call in for tickets. Ten years ago, I wouldn't be blogging right now. I'd be freezing my arse off in line at a ticketmaster location waiting for tickets only to be screwed by scalpers in front of me. I waited in line for Sting tickets while in high school with my then-best friend. We watched (but tried not to) the couple in front of us fornicating. We laughed for years about it-how old would that kid be that was conceived on that cold Saturday morning? Let me think....GOOD LORD!!! He'd/She's be 20 now!!!! TWENTY!!!! Wow. Time flies.

4. Millie tried stage 1 chicken last week. Not a big hit (see photo). We camo'ed it in sweet potatoes and squash and it was much better received.

Speaking of, she should be up at any moment, so I should jet. There she is now. Like clockwork.