Tuesday, July 22, 2008

We're doing pretty good.

I've been keeping busy, mostly doing stupid things that don't really need to be done but give me enough feeling of accomplishment to get through the day.

We got 10 lbs of fresh-picked plums for .35/lb from a sweet old lady just outside town. I made a few jars of jam (turned out very good), some plum sauce (that I'm saving for when pork chops go on sale), and an open-faced pastry... thing. I've reserved the last 1/2 lb for a blueberry-plum upside-down cake.

We also got some lovely summer squash from our next-door neighbor. I experimented with breading and baking some, and that turned out pretty well. I'm thinking about adding some pureed into a biscuit mix recipe I found. The rest will probably go into stir-fry.

What else? I cleaned out and rearranged all the closets. That kept me busy for a few nights.

I've been having a heck of a time sleeping lately. I've always been a poor sleeper. For most of my life I've been lucky to get to sleep before 3-5 am. The bone-wearying exhaustion of pregnancy is the only antidote I've ever found to cure this. Now that my old friend insomnia has returned, I'm crabby and miss falling asleep at a reasonable hour and waking up feeling fresh and happy.

To try to avoid that miserable tossing and turning in the dark, I just keep going. Cleaning, writing shopping lists, paying bills... whatever. And of course, rearranging the pantry at 5:30 am.

I colored my hair a few shades darker than usual last night. I like it.

Fritz and I, tired of the same old afternoon pastimes, have recently begun scouring the playroom closet for games. I can kick some major tush at Ants in the Pants. We're pretty evenly matched at Jenga and Tiddlywinks. I don't even bother playing him at checkers, as I don't stand a chance against his mad skillz. I took an early lead in the Battleship tournament, but I think he's figured out my strategy, 'cause he's beat me the past few times.

I recently found this clip on YouTube. I remember really liking this one when I was a kid.

Thanks so much for all of your kind emails and comments. They really were a comfort. I'm sorry it's taken a while to get to all of them, but I promise I will soon.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

One More Thing

You know that old joke where when someone gets hurt, you say you'll step on their foot so they won't even notice the paper cut?

Yeah, doesn’t work so much in real life. It's hard not to feel beaten down when one bad thing after another keeps coming.

We lost another pregnancy. This one was about 8 ½ weeks.

It's heartbreaking enough to lose a baby, but then life has to add insult to injury and put you through the actual miscarriage.

Just let me sit the bench a while, coach.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

I Don't Want to Live on the Moon

Confession: when I'm sitting at the computer, I sometimes play random classic Sesame Street songs on YouTube, clicking on whatever pops up afterward. I find them really comforting.

I am disappointed, however, that I've yet to find two of my childhood favourites. One was a song about a little girl in Alaska getting dressed to go outside. She was like, "Put on my [native term] to stay warm and dry... Because it's [something that sounded like Ookie-ook], really cold outside." She put on about fifty layers of clothing, and I loved the words so much.

The other was designed to teach kids not to waste water, and asked the poignant question, "Are you a waster-oo?"

Bigger confession: I still cry every time I watch this video.

When I watch these old clips, I'm struck by the overwhelming messages sent out by them.
You're special.
I'm proud of you.
You can do it.
What you're doing/feeling/thinking is normal.
We're all in this together.
We're lucky to be here.

It's easy to tease the earnestness that these shows portray. But are any of these messages not ones that kids need to hear over and over again? Aren't they messages we'd all like to hear over and over again?

I'm really sort of bothered by the type of "educational" kids programming I'm seeing these days. It seems so focused on teaching children parlor tricks like names of classic painters and random foreign words and opera tunes.

I just have to wonder if it's somewhat indicative of our shift in goals as people. Don’t we all brag about our infant's neck control, our 18-month old's potty training, our 3-year old's reading, our 8-year old's long-division? And those are great things. But if these sort of things are the only that we focus on, aren't we setting ourselves up to someday have a world of adults whose only concerns are one-upping the rest of humanity?

Maybe I just have an unhealthy obsession with children's television.

Thursday, July 10, 2008


So my current craft obsession is ATCs, or Artist Trading Cards. Just like regular trading cards, but instead of displaying men in too-tight pants with dorky haircuts, they feature original art (which might include men in too-tight pants with dorky haircuts, but it's completely coincidental, I assure you).

They can be made with any medium, on any surface, and display any image. The only real rule is that they must be 2.5" x 3.5" (I make mine on old playing cards). They can be saved or traded. And I lurrr-ve them.

I found a group on Crafster that is trying to get through a list of 100 themes for their cards. I decided to play.

I've already given my first two away and didn't get any scans of them, but I did take a couple of quick photos first. Since they'd already been mod-podged, they were difficult to photograph. Flash washed them out, no flash blurred them.

Here they are though: (The first and second in picture 1, and the second and third in picture 2. Ignore the blue card 'til later.) The first card doesn't fit into one of the hundred themes (because I hadn't decided to play yet), but it's called "Green Finch in a Brocade Tree." The second was for the theme "Rainbow."

This one is "Last Hope," as take-out food is often our last hope for sustenance on a busy day.

"Waiting" (it scanned all crooked)

"Fortitude," because nothing fortifies me more than a cozy bed, yummy snack, and phone call to my mom.


"Happiness" (another crooked guy)

"All that I have"


8/100 Pretty fun, yeah? I highly encourage everyone to give it a whirl. Very addicting, though. I have to tell myself straight out that there is no ATC-ing until chores are done.

Friday, July 4, 2008

Just when you thought life couldn't get any worse...

I woke up at 7 am to a roach the length and width of my thumb, crawling over my open mouth.

So how was your day?