Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Tuesday's Sticky Notes

(A large amount of these are inspired by my darling, challenging girl.)
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Dear husband,
I know you need to travel for work. If you line up this many trips in a row again, ... um. (Several options erased.) I will probably cry. (Several sentences erased due to undue self-pity.) Just so you know. Things that make pregnant ladies cry should be avoided if at all possible.
XOXO, K.
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Dear boss,
I totally appreciated your response to my cancellation of our 9:00am meeting. (It was something along the lines of "No worries, I clearly remember those toddler days".)
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Dear _____,
You need to take some time for yourself. Don't let your work consume you. Really. You'll have a better self for both work & home.
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Dear ______,
I don't even know what to say. What's wrong with you? Are you crazy? Are you that insecure? are all questions that spring to the top of my mind. The real question is: do I have enough energy to keep being your friend if yo do this to yourself again? (The fact that you do not realize that you're doing it to yourself in no way mitigates the situation.)
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Am, my darling sweet girl,
Supper was supposed to be a treat. You got apple juice & a piece of banana bread. How was this worth screaming, the acting up, and the rest of the drama? Sleep well & scream less tomorrow.
Love, Mom
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Ladies at the yarn store,
I'm so glad that you're all there.
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Cherry-stem hat,
Yes, I am not smart. Thank you for helping to illustrate that to me. Repeatedly.
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Baby -
I'm sure enjoying you bomping around. I can't wait to meet you.
Mom.

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Wheeeeee!

What a nice day. I realized on Thursday that it's Olds Fiber Week this week, & that this weekend there was a merchant mall.
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So I proposed to the man that instead of going to Black Diamond, to Vale's, we go to Olds. Because I want to. I must have asked prettily enough, because we all went for a ride in the family car to Olds. (Also, we are going to Vale's tomorrow.)
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Today was great!
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A) I did not feel carsick. It's possible that my hope of finding a new spindle, the weight I want, cancelled out the carsickness, but maybe it was just a stage of pregnant; a stage that's done. Either way, I felt good in the car today.
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B) Am was absolutely the most charming creature for most of today; she was happy at the chiropractor (the man got cricked), she was happy at the cafe (the man got a latte, I got my standard princess), she was happy in the car ("winkle, winkle, little star, h-i-j-k-l-m-n-o-p..."), she was happy at the market.
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C) I was happy at the market too. First off, I found Twist of Fate, because she' mentioned on Rav that she'd have Jenkin's Turkish spindles. I've been hankering for a Turkish spindle for a while, because spindle spinning is slow, & the Turk's end up sort of abbreviating a step in the process, because what you spin is neatly wound into a loaf as you go. And I've heard great things about them; they're called Turkish Delights by some. She had three left; two were the same size as what I have now, but there was one that was the size I wanted. Huzzah!
I also finally found a mundane niddy-noddy; nothing hand carved, or miniature, or elaborate. It's drying right now, the man threw some finish on it for me. (He was glad to, once I substituted the words "wood stuff" for "niddy-noddy".) And a nifty scarf kit that felts silk & wool fibers to a silk chiffon scarf. I've read about the technique, but wasn't motivated enough to hunt it all up for myself. Now, all I need is 2m x 24cm of bubble wrap, & some time. (And I got a Ravelry button!)
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D) Just down from Twist of Fate was a fantastic lady - Barbara Robinson of Luscious Luxury. She does a lot of (delicious) silk & other exotic fiber dying; she prefers to sell wholesale. I'd love to buy wholesale, but I restrained myself to one bag of tussah silk rovings.
Pretty nice, as Am would (& did) say. This photo is in the baggie - the other pics didn't take worth a darn; the sheen was blinding! (This is good, btw.)
The other good thing about Barbara - she was a delightful lady. We'd been chatting for a while when Am & the man came mumbling by, and Am was immediately drawn to touch everything, including Barbara's lunch, and her spinning wheel & the silk/wool roving that she was working at. The purple wad of fiber is the piece of roving that she pulled off to give to Am - Am loved it, with both hands, and I promised that I was going to do my best to make her a fiber lover. (Already on my list of things to do.) (I can't make the link to her site work - but I have her email if you want it.)
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E) I got some lavender Eucalan from an incredibly nice gentleman from Saskatchewan; and I got a pound of Corriedale top from a similarly pleasant woman from Cochrane.
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F) Then we got out of there, with my budget & the man & Am's good humor intact. (Wow! No one saw either of those hoped-for things actually being accomplished! Zounds!)
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G) The drive home was pleasant - I enjoyed sitting in a car without having to focus so very hard on the horizon, the breathing, & the not getting ill.
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H) I finished plying my handspun fiber from Val - I'd been super close to completion forever, but the lack of a niddy-noddy to set the twist was killing my motivation. (My improvised attempts at niddy-noddy substitution were not satisfactory.) So, once the niddy-noddy is dry, this will have its twist set, & be officially part of the yarn stash.
(153g of "Annie Dobson", a grey Romney ewe that belong's to Val.)
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Am got screamy after supper, but the knowledge that the man was gardening & I could have help if I asked for it really, well, helped. Now she's asleep, & I'm going to play with my new treasures.
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PS: I am excited about my new spindle, partially because I have this theory: spinning will outsmart baby-brain; I won't be able to screw spinning up as much as knitting. Can't wait to see if it will or won't be proven true.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Wherein Our Issue Is Still Not Resolved

Well, I finally managed to get things sorted last night. I'd even started knitting into new yarn - you know, not yarn that has previously been knit into the hat, then frogged out, and I thought:
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"This is going well; I should take a progress pic to show the intarweb that I can count!"
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The universe heard me, natch; and so I've spent the last 43 minutes trying to sort out what is going on with this row. I still don't have my (simple) lace pattern really clearly established - I think in another couple repeats, I will be able to see more clearly WTF is going on.
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I've knit portions of this row at least three times. And when I thought I finally had it - my stitch count didn't work at the end of the row.
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I finally figured it out; I did it to myself WITH THE VERY FIRST STITCHES IN THE ROW. It's YO, K2, yadda yadda, not YO, K1, YO K2, yadda yadda. So the whole row must go!
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On the upside, I've got a working title for this hat now - no, not "YOU @%%$$ POS" - the hat isn't to blame. It's me. I admit it.
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So it's the cherry stem hat. Was it ever in vogue for your crowd to prove that they could tie a cherry stem in a knot with their tongue? It seems like an easy task; clearly understood, seemingly easily accomplished by others...and yet. I am challenged, despite the cleverness I thought I possessed. I guess I could call it the humble pie hat, too, but somehow naming a hat after a pie seems like it's a lead up to some kind of vaudeville act.
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Which might be okay too, now that I think about it, but I like the cherry stem hat better. I'm sure the knitting fates & the universe shall present many more examples to feel humbled.
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Oh look. As I ripped out the row discussed earlier, I discovered that I'd botched the row before that too. The row where ALL I HAVE TO DO IS KNIT UNTIL THE MARKER. Oh well. I'm going to go & have a shower; maybe I can wash my hair successfully... although yesterday, I totally glitched & shampooed my hair like three times because I kept forgetting to grab the conditioner, not the shampoo. Yeah, I guess it is baby brain.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

I'm pretty, I'm smart, & gosh darn it...

Well, maybe I'm not smart. I'm being challenged by counting to six.
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All I'm trying to do is: *YO, K6, YO, K1*, repeat to end of row.
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My poor, pretty cherry-blossom pink yarn. It's getting a little beat up looking; I don't even want to admit how often I've frogged this row.
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My only comfort is that the first time, I frogged with good intentions. I counted just fine; it's just that I HATED what my dpn's did to my YO's.
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So the question is... am I tired? Is this baby brain? Am I too fascinated by the tv show about ancient wonders with new discoveries? Has a week of being an oppressive dictator eroded my mental abilities?
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I can still count - really. I just finished a hat that I'm very pleased with.
(Of course, I'm lazy as anything, so instead of a completed hat pic, here's a pic of Am helping make cookies. These were already in the camera, so I didn't have to move my arse to find the camera.)
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Stay tuned sports fans; the man is home tomorrow to resume his share of dictatorial duties. And if that, sleep & a channel change doesn't help, we'll be officially in baby-brain.
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PS: If you don't knit & are confused by the lingo - doesn't it sound cool? Don't you want to learn how, so that you too can hang out with the cool kids at the yarns store?

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

I Have The Sweetest Husband

I really do. He's fabulous.
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The man has been away since Sunday. Despite the brief & stellar presence of Auntie S____, Am misses her daddy very much, which she expresses as intense rage*, which interprets vocally as "WAAAAAAAAIGHAAAAHAHH". And maybe I'm a delicate flower, but my day gets thrown when it begins with a solid hour or two of that focused at me.
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So the surprise the man arranged for me was completely unexpected, and it arrived at the best time. We got home, and there was a parcel on the front step.
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It was from Hammacher Schlemmer; which, along with Lee Valley, has become a catalogue of choice in our household.**
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My little treat this week has been knitting with some exquisite Egyptian cotton yarn I picked up from the Knitting Room, so I think you can imagine my delight and astonishment when I cracked the box open & found (drum roll please).
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The poshest, most luxurious, Egyptian cotton, 1500 thread count sheets. Stunning.
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What an incredible way to brighten up my day. They're just hanging now; I promised not to sleep on them until the man get home. One of the nicest things about posh sheets is the fact that I will still feel fabulous in them; even once I'm big enough that I can't roll over without concerted effort.
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So I think that perhaps sleep won't be first on the list of things to do once we go to bed.
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*Right. I'll put this on the list: it's important to recognize & honor your emotions, and even if they make you uncomfortable, you shouldn't substitute other emotions for them. Another thing on the list: potty training.
**I haven't got Victoria's Secret in paper for years - better deals online. Also, there's a pregnancy moratorium on nice lingerie. (Anyone remember the Wally World bra fiasco?) Am does like Sears, but I think that's more a quantity than quality thing.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Good Karma, Good Laugh

S____ has fortuitously been in town for a couple days, and today she was headed downtown so I carpooled with her. I suggested we stop for a coffee; the idea was warmly accepted.
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So she gets her soy latte & I get my princess coffee (mocha, no whip, no foam, whole milk sometimes at 140)*. We sit for a brief, well, sit, and I notice the pair having coffee just across from us. I suspect they're just work friends; not romantically involved. Both are clean, well put together, early to mid-thirties.
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The middle button of her blouse is undone. I had a quiet conversation with S____ as to whether or not I should let her know - it was loud, & they were far away enough that I would have had to yell. I could have tried to catch her eye, but they were absorbed enough in their conversation that I would've looked crazy/stalker. You couldn't actually really see her bra, so I shrugged & decided to leave well enough alone.
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On the way out, though, I had to tell her. What if she had an important meeting or something? I couldn't not say anything. So I just leaned down as I passed, & said "You have a button undone."
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I kept going; S___ was behind me, and once we're out of the cafe, she bursts into laughter.
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"That was awesome! She glared at him and said 'Why didn't you tell me?' He squirmed, and muttered 'I didn't notice...' She exploded: 'How could you not notice!' Wicked!"
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Very funny. Very funny indeed.
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(Also very funny: I, the original croch-idiot, helped S____ learn how to crochet last night & sort out a granny square. Wow!)
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*I like getting princess coffees. Yes, they are expensive, but they are an occasional treat. And I get exactly what I want. And that's worth $5 some days.

Friday, June 19, 2009

Oh wow man...

This was originally a brief post about the first image - you see, I've been looking through the Garn Studio's free patterns. And there are sure some finds...
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Doesn't that face make you want to knit those mittens? It makes me want to knit them, at any rate. I'm also imagining a) the photo shoot & b) what the rejected proofs looked like.
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But I couldn't resist sharing this with you. This is stunning. I could maybe see making the hat if it was really supposed to be a tea cozy... but why would a grown woman make this for herself? (I should totally make one for S_____. I can totally imagine her wearing that out in the field.)
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They do have some brilliant designs though. This is in sock yarn, but there's another with the same short-row shaping for women. I wonder if I could Franken-gauge a sweater that would fit Am out of the baby & the lady's pattern?
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This one gets my attention every time I go through the Garn patterns. I like it more all the time; maybe in a year or so I'll be ready to commit to actually trying to make it. I'm sure my skills are adequate; but I get AADD really badly. (You know AADD? Artistic Attention Deficit Disorder?) Right now, my girth is expanding in a directly inverse ratio to my ability to focus, so I think I'm going to try & keep my projects small &/or simple. I've got lots of ideas; the execution ability is getting a bit impaired, that's all.
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I'm going to go & eat something then to bed. Later tater!

Thursday, June 18, 2009

It's a much better day.

The man is home, the teeth are not so awful, and things are doing well in the garden.
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I took some pictures the other day; I think this is my favorite. The shy snowdrop anemones.
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The left half of the yard...
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The right half - the "C" of the yard.

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The purple french lilac, which is along the back fence. It's growing verrrry slowly, but smells verrry fine when it blooms.
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The peony buds, for which I have been waiting patiently. They're actually open today, but so drenched in rain that they have no fragrance at all. Maybe I'll cut some tomorrow to bring in.
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And the orange strawflowers, up on the deck in pots! The man isn't overly fond of them, but I kind of get a kick out of them & I thought the girl would enjoy their texture.
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Also, orange is a color that she seems to get right every time. And do we need a better reason to choose flowers?

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

...sigh...

Oh, I was so excited about tonite. I left work early, so I could be sure to get the girl in good time, and we could have a nice little all-girls supper (the man is away), then we could go to the Knitting Guild for a little while, to see all the knitters, and maybe enjoy some snacks.
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Sadly (and I do mean sad), the scheduled plans were totally trashed by the arrival of Screamerella VonScreamenhowl, the Baroness of WAAAAAAAAAAGHHIIIIIAAAAAUUUU.
(The Baroness on a recent holiday to Hawaii. She hates the sun, loathes sand, and detests fun-loving family members.)
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The Baroness was not appeased by a supper of cheddar bunnies (favorite meal), 2nd helpings of juice, tylenol, Sesame Street, books, or trying to talk with her daddy on the phone.
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After a couple solid hours of trying to a) keep my chin up b) keep calm & c) keep focused, I gave up. I eroded. I lost my shit, howled at the moon, then briefly burst into tears. Yes, the Dowager Baroness of WAAAAAAAAAAGHHIIIIIAAAAAUUUU stopped by.
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So I made the executive decision to give up on the guild for tonite. We had a snug, I threw on my sweats, and we headed downstairs to the couch.
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Except that now, NOW, the small Baroness wanted to go, GO MOMMY! And I burst into tears again. I could not face changing out of my sweats. I couldn't even think up a fun, close errand to go to.
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So the Baroness protested that for a while. She eventually came around, and we sat & snuggled & watched So You Think You Can Dance & talked about who are those? What is that?
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We got through the last two hours of the evening with only about a quarter of the time spent screaming. I'm looking at it as a success.
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She's got three of her four canines cut through. I'm hormonal as anything. The man is out of town. I missed the knitters & the snacks & the chance to show my girl off.
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At least I know my brakes work, right?

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Already; So Long

It's been a year & a day since Hugh died.
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It's hard to know what to say; I'm full of a bunch of different feelings - all the ones you'd expect, plus guilt. Mom had a gathering on Sunday, and I didn't go home for it. I just couldn't deal with the drive (& the motion sickness) for such a qucik visit (the visit to the man's folks was a complete crash, even excluding Am's flu). I just couldn't do it. I feel bad that I wasn't there with her, although my brother & niece were there, as were a whole pile of guests as well. We talked a couple different times on the phone - about nothing in particular - so I felt like I was keeping her company, a bit. I still feel guilty.
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And then I feel bad that I'm being selfish by feeling guilty - I'm not just feeling sad about Hugh, and mom's loss. Grief & emotions, eh? If only they were rational, or made sense. Sadly, the only sense I've ever made out of any strong emotion has been after it ebbed.
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Maybe now that things aren't so fresh, I'll say what I would've liked to say at his service. I couldn't get the words out - I couldn't get any words out that were about how I felt about Hugh. I could talk about how everything else was, but not about me. Talking still hurts, but at least with the Intarweb, I can wipe my nose on my shirt & you won't notice. (Everyone but S___ thinks I'm joking, right? Little do you know...)
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I imagine that you do know I miss Hugh. He was like an uncle when I was a little kid - I was utterly convinced that he was Santa Claus. (What else do you make of a friend of your parents who disappears to work "Up North" all winter, and always brings treats & fun whenever he shows up?) Once I was bigger, and my suspicions that he was Santa had faded, he was still pretty darn cool. He'd buy my friends & I chips while we waited in the lobby of the Hotel. He'd sneak us sips - or out & out cups - of beer at house parties. He'd let us drive. All the things that kids think are SO AWESOME when they're 11 or 12 or so... (Some of these are particular to rural Saskatchewan, it's true.)
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I did spend a little while disliking Hugh. When Hugh & Mom started dating, I had the same reaction that you'd expect from any teenage girl whose mother has a boyfriend - when she didn't. I was Very Angry, and spent a good deal of time Not Liking Hugh At All. It was exhausting to spend so much energy trying to dislike a man that I'd spent my whole life loving. I think I managed it for maybe a month, and I finally gave up and came around. I think I still drove him nuts, but it was the unintentional teenage idiocy that happens to everyone; it wasn't malicious or targeted. (I just didn't want to eat anything green other than kiwis, and he was convinced that I was going to keel over of malnutrition by the time I was 21.)
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As time went on, our relationship gelled into a comfortable state; Mom was something we both loved very much, so we worked from there. When I brought home my man for the first time, and he & Hugh headed out ice-fishing, I began to appreciate him from a different angle.

A shorter angle in comparison, true, but a different angle. (L-R: Hugh, Mom, myself, & the man. Differences in height are not an optical illusion.)
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Once I (finally) had a good partner in my life, I could begin to appreciate how Hugh was a partner to my mother. Like everyone, there were ups and downs, but they were better suited, better friends, and had more fun than most other couples I've ever known.
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(Yes, that's the Big Bad Wolf & Little Red Riding Hood.)
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Once I became a mother, Hugh came into even sharper relief as a Grandpa. Hugh had always been a hit with the kids - but he liked them best once they started running. Am was a little different - he was here with Mom when she was born (he made fresh French bread).
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(Same round cheeks, same round bellies!)
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I don't have a lot of very clear memories from those early days with Am (one of nature's gifts to new mothers, I suppose). One evening stands out - I had Am upstairs with me & she was hungry (I think). I was going to feed her at any rate, but I wanted to change first. I laid her down on the bed, and snuck to the closet. She started crying, and I heard Hugh tiptoe in. "Shhh...shhh... hush..." He was trying to soothe her, and then, against all of his policies about "no kids until they're running", he picked her up to try & comfort her. She settled a bit, but he still look a little panicked & a lot relieved when I came to retrieve her. It might have been his first voluntary baby holding...
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I think what makes me the most wistful is that Am had such a short time with Grampa Hugh, and Sandy won't have any time at all. Am & Sandy are lucky enough to have still have two wonderful grandpas, and a whole pile if uncles, but I still wonder: who will teach them about water fights? (We had to institute an actual rule "No garden hoses indoors.") What about teddy bear stands, how gumball machines work, how to dive off of the boat, and how to drive the boat?
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It just won't be the same for them; it's not the same for any of us anymore.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Well.

So, the first thing I learned today was that poop hard to see on Oriental wool carpets. (If you're easily dismayed by scatological tales, you might want to skip the rest of this story.)
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The second thing was that I need to revise my morning plans with Am a little. We're slowly gearing up for potty training, and so part of the plan is to let her try to use the potty every morning, when she wakes up.
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Sounds easy, no? Wake up, hop out of bed, take off pants & diaper, wander down the hall, try to pee, get a new diaper. I didn't see any flaws there, and it's been working fine for the last couple days. She hasn't used the potty in the morning yet, but she understands that pee is for diapers or potties.
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I guess I forgot about poo. I was tucking the diaper into the diaper genie, and I hear her say "What are you doing? WHAT ARE YOU DOING?". I look over, and she's (obviously) talking to herself, and has just crapped on the carpet.
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"Ah-ha!" I think, "A teaching moment!". I heard that phrase - teaching moment - a while ago, & I thought it was such a brilliant spin on how to deal with something running awry. (Or amuck, in this case.) It also gets cheese points. (The last phrase I was this taken with was "value-added activity".) I don't use them much, but they're there in my head.
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So, I scooped Am up - gingerly - and we go off to the bathroom, to explain about how that was pooping, and it belongs in the diaper or the potty, etc etc. She was a little dismayed, but I didn't yell - I wasn't expecting a morning poop from her, and from her tone, she sure wasn't either. She had a nice hose-down, followed by a tub rinse, then a bath.
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The third thing is that poop really, really does blend in unfortunately well with paisley carpets. Really. So I cleaned up, and cleaned up, then cleaned up, and discovered that the wool in the rug is not colorfast. Hm. Well, at least I can roll it up, drag it outside, & garden hose it all someday - when the man is around to help - because now I'm envisioning what has been spilt on it before. (It's a lovely rug - actual wool - but not new to me. The previous owners had toddlers, too.)
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The fourth thing I learned this morning is that if you wait until 10:30 to offer breakfast, Am will happily eat, with no screaming or wailing or dramatics. If I weren't starving every day by 9am, I would be more tempted to see if this would work every day. I'm also not sure if would still work without the bathtub/mess distraction, & I definitely don't want to open every day like that.
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Now it is the afternoon, and I'm waiting (with a fair amount of trepidation) to see what is wrong with the car's brakes (other than that new, awful, constant, grindy noise) and how much it's going to cost to fix. Sigh.
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UPDATED TO ADD: Well, it's the front brakes - pads & rotors (or maybe calipers - I have a terrible memory for car stuff), and they'd just started to get really dangerous, so it's good I brought them in. It'll be about $475. Sigh. Oh well. I love my automotive place - I was talking on the phone with them earlier, I'd said that I wasa little freaked out by the noise they were making - they shouldn't make any noise, really, I think - and John said "Well, come on by, I'll go for a quick drive, and we'll know what it is & if it's safe enough to book in for Friday." Thank heavens I did, & thank heavens they're working on it right now. Three cheers for Knibbe Automotive. (The man is gonemost of this week, so the concept of wrangling the toddler, the part time work & all the rest of reality with no car was a little disheartening, to say the least. Still MUCH MUCH better than a car with no brakes, & a car-accident, when the man is a 6 hour drive away. Phew.)

Improved! Now with less rancor!

Yes, I did quest forth bravely to joust against the dragons lurking in their lairs.
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I did make some progress with the files; and I think I'll have a solid result in about another hour of two. (Not tonite, no! Heavens. I need more attention for that than I do for lace knitting, yo.) The good news is, the fix will have taken less time than re-keying the entire year. The bad news is, the difference is only about an hour. And it would've taken far less brain sweat. Ah well. I needed to sink my teeth into something today, & the accounting files were it. And it's the principle of the thing. (The man asked if I was done. I said "Well, I certainly have something that's very reasonable looking right now - but I want to do a little more proofing and make sure it's right." He figured that was worth the extra time.)
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The second half of the day was entirely more mellow the first - I think Am's teeth (or tooth - I think it was the upper canine on the left right side) is either cut through or taking a break. We didn't go to the store after all, because the keys for the car were AWOL, and the man had taken the other car to the dump, then to get more gravel. I made the executive decision to say screw it, and we went & sat in the swing & read a book for an hour or so.
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It was very mellow, and I think I needed that more than sugar cookies.
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(I still got unsalted butter & cream cheese later though. Just in case.)

Sunday, June 14, 2009

A much better day!

Yes, yesterday was much better. Happy little girl, happy yardwork, happy sunshine.
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Today, however, the Amster is working on a canine tooth, which (appropriately enough) is being accompanied by howling. One more hour until we can dose with Tylenol again.
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And I've got the Itch. It's been building for a couple days, and I'm afraid it's turned into a full-blown case. You know the Itch, don't you? You could also call it the Crank. No matter what I plan, or do, or even think about doing, it's not what I want.
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It happens sometimes, for no reason that I've been able to figure out. Sometimes, it will go away on its own. Sometimes, it helps if I start something new. Sometimes, it helps if I finish something old.
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And sometimes, the only thing to do is it still for a while & let it pass.
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I've tried a couple things so far - my "to start" list isn't tantalizing me at all, so I'm working on finishing things. Today's slated completion is the books.. which have been vexing me for some time now, due to a corrupted file & the potential re-entry of an entire year pf bookkeeping. (*hairball noise*).
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So, I'm going to apply my building orneriness to accounting, which probably deserves it, instead of Am & the man, who don't.
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To pass the time until nap time, we're going to the grocery store, where I will continue to mull how badly I want homemade sugar cookies, and whether it's worth* the mess & the heat. With some luck, Am will enjoy the trip & be distracted from her teeth. And if she pitches a fit in the produce aisle, I'm in the kind of mood today where I might just join her!
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If you see two people, screaming & thrashing by the avocadoes, do stop & say hello.
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*Also, the potential failure - I have trouble with sugar cookies. Recipes that use some cream cheese seem to be more reliabel for me, but still a little iffy. And I was thinking about gingersnaps - a solid success - but I don't WANT gingersnaps....

Friday, June 12, 2009

Blerrrrg... But there's hope!

I did not feel like this today - a combination of CRAP & other office accounting shenanigans conspired against me.

But tomorrow, I have big plans to feel this happy & pink & orange. Yup. I'm even going to take Amoryn out for ice cream for lunch if I have to.
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(I'll try to remember to chuck the camera in my purse, but you know, even if I do, it's slim odds that I'll risk relatively delicate electronics near a two year old who is enthralled but also confused by the combination of frozen dairy products & the laws of nature.)
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(Gravity? Melting? Wha?)

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Tuesday's Open Sticky Notes

(First, baby ultrasound pics but no gender spoilers! Second, I poured most of my brainpower into the office today. And third, I put all of my willpower into convincing the babe to let us see what's going on! So. Sticky notes again.)
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Dear Ultrasound Lady: Thank heavens that you took a quick image of my cervix & then let me go & pee three cups full. I cannot express how this made me fell, although I almost lunged towards you for a full-tongue french-kiss. Thankfully, i did not, as my bladder would have exploded & I would have peed my pants & had to wear a paper dress to work.* Also, that would have been weird because you had a giant tube of heated jelly for my belly.
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Dear Ultrasound Lady, Part II: Thank you so much for letting us know that everything looks good with the baby! And thank you for checking to see what Sandy is!
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Sandy: Thanks for letting us know!** We're so excited & pleased to see you. Words cannot express. Love Mommy & Daddy.

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Dear Mom: I know you think it's wrong to find out on ultrasounds what the baby is, but look what else you can see! The four chambers of the heart!

(Oh, wow, um... gross?)
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And feet!

(Awwwwww... no need to count toes once Sandy's born!)
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Quesadilla: Yum. I appreciate you more every time we meet. I'm especially delighted by the discovery that you are tasty cold, as leftovers, as well as fresh & hot.
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Dear T_____ (at work): Thank you for snorting in disbelief at how tiny my belly is for 18 weeks. I don't even care if you're mentally comparing me to your wife who just had twins. It still made me feel good.
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Lady Crossing The Street With Her Dog: You know, I talk to Am using that exact same sentence structure & intonation. Interesting. I wonder if it's more effective on golden labs or toddlers?
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Dear ______ & ________ : I realize that no matter what I say to you, you will never hear me. That's okay. It's a good way to practice my positive attitude & points of view. After a certain point though, I get tired of you talking to me, without listening to my responses. I may take a while off. Don't take it personally if I avoid you, although it is you. You will probably never read this & realize it's you that I'm talking about. And that's okay too.
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Dear Yarn: I love you and can't resist you. I got some new stuff today, to make something for Am & Sandy & myself. The colors are lovely & I shall post them, once I am keen enough to find my camera. (I did show them off to the man, & he expressed puzzlement as to my color choices for Amoryn. Rest assured, I have a vision.)
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Dear Popcorn: I am coming for you. NOM NOM NOM.
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(Bye Sandy! Great spine you got there!)
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*Yeah, right. I would have worn a paper dress to the maternity store just over there *point*, then worn something new to the office, with a wadded up ball of shame left in a plastic bag in my car.








**See Facebook or email me if you want to know. I will try & keep it a secret here on the blog, for the sake of the grands who don't want to know.

Monday, June 08, 2009

Snow & the Fifth Horseman of the Apocalypse*

It snowed on Friday night. I woke up at 3am or so, and went to the bathroom, then peered out into the gloom that should have been gloomier.
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"That's snow on the roofs. It will be gone by the time I wake up. Just to be sure, I'm turning off the alarm & sleeping in."
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It didn't work. I didn't get to sleep in because herself started singing at 7:30am. Also, when I finally pried myself out of bed and looked out the windows, this is what I saw:
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That's the cherry tree in bloom, the peonies almost in full bloom, all the bedding plants that the man spent so much time nurturing... etc.
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The poor mayday tree in the front yard was all drooped over - it was just hitting full bloom. That's rather how it made me feel, too.
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This is also how the snow made me feel. (I'd originally put my open hand next to the snow so you could see how much there was, but I realized that this gave a better sense of both scale & my emotions.)
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So we drove away. I'd like to say that it was pure escapism, but we'd planned to go to the man's hometown after attending a certain S____'s first birthday party. The cupcakes were great, the party was fun, but the road trip was, well.
Amoryn is travelling much better than I am these days. I'm getting wickedly motion sick. She slept & sang. I slept, and knitted** a little while looking at the horizon & breathing shallowly.
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We go to K____ just fine, had a nice supper with Grandma J____ & Grandpa E____, then headed off to Aunt K___ & Uncle R____'s to bunk down for the night.
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I woke up the next morning to hear Amoryn coughing, then coughing, then coughing. I was just thinking "I should get her a drink" when I heard her little voice say "Uh-oh..."
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Sure enough, uh-oh it was. The man & I spent the next three or four hours cleaning up, trying to snuggle her, keep her warm, & force her to get sick in her bucket. I think Am thinks the bucket is making her sick, so trying to get her to get sick INTO the bucket involves pinning her arms in a quasi-Mexican wrestling move. Poor girl. She seemed to perk up after about 5 hours, but was restricted to crackers & clear liquids for the rest of the day. Luckily, this is not so different than her preferred diet some days, so not so awful.
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Although in the afternoon, her canine teeth started really bugging her. And I have a milder version of whatever she had - although I almost would have preferred getting sick & having done with, instead of weebling around.
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We survived the night (although there were several wakings in the night, and one re-medication), and headed back to home with Grandpa in tow. He's on his way to the coast to help M____ & L____ with some renos.
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The car trip was similar. Some comfort knitting for me, some made-up singing about funny tomatoes & bunnies for Amoryn ("funny mo-ma-mo, bunny hop hop hop"), a conference call for the man, and some sleeping, and a lot of horizon staring with shallow breathing for me as well.
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But I survived. And when we got home, we were delighted to see that most of the plants did too! (I'd embraced the idea that everything but the sweetpeas & maybe the strawberries & rhubarb would be dead.)
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The miniature roses I got for mother's day survived - and one even opened a bloom! (That's zeolite on the ground - a garden input - not snow.)

The heliotrope didn't fare so well. Neither did the marigolds or the four o'clocks.
But much to my delight, the peonies and the cherry & apple trees are looking just fine! Huzzah! Flowers & scent & fruit, oh my! So all's well that ends well, although if we could have skipped the flu, the motion sickness, & the snow, that would have been just fine by me.

The man is taking his dad to the airport even as I type, & I'm going to go & watch Sesame Street with my girl.
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*That's pestilence or plague, right? Gotta be.
**I find the act of knitting very soothing, & I don't need to look at Shawl That Counting to work on it.

Friday, June 05, 2009

Bah, humbug.

It is snowing. The furnace is running - and it needs to be. It's 3 in the afternoon. It's June. These all shouldn't be true at the same time. And it's even worse that it's the afternoon - somehow it's that much more insulting. This mid-afternoon snow crap just makes me want to hibernate.
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My poor little bedding plants. The poor cherry blossoms, the poor apple blossoms, the poor peony buds. *sigh*. I don't even want to think about the man's reaction - he spent so much time starting all the baby plants this year.
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I think I'm going to amend my afternoon list of things to do so that I have time for a tub while Am is napping.
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*shiver*

Well.

I have an idea for a blog post - a funny one - and I'll be swoggled if I can get Amoryn to cooperate with me.
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Between the combination of being hung up on that idea, and the man being out of town, I feel like I have less words than usual. I suspect I would be a far more lax parent if I were a single parent - also, a lot crazier. She's been teething, and one night we had cereal bars, popcorn, & apples with peanut butter for supper. She'd eat it without screaming about it, and honestly, that's all I really cared at that point. I adore my girl, but after about three hours of irrational screaming, I become less concerned about calming, comforting & explaining*, and more concerned about making it stop & not start again.
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I always stay up too late when the man's out of town - or at least, I do for the first three days. I guess it takes that long for me to adjust to the lack of hot-water bottle. The benefit is, that I've got lots of knitting done**. Annie's Meret (she knit it at the Knitting Room, it's by Wooly Wormhead) made me realize that I need a summer weight hat to wear - all my others are wool (hot) or silk wool (also hot). So I picked up some yarn, with every intention of knitting the exact same hat, but.
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It's a slightly different gauge, & by the time I goofed around & sorted that out, I'd gotten a different idea in my head... so now, while it no longer looks like the above, and it is becoming closer to a hat, it's not even remotely related to Meret. I'm still not sure if I'll like the final shape - it may trend unfortunately towards Klingon brow-ridges - but we'll see. It's not much knitting, and it's really pretty.
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(And, for a cotton yarn, I'm mostly enjoying knitting it! It's a chained construction, so there's a little bit of stretch inherent in that.)
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All right. Back to the List Of Things To Do.
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Oh, & I cast off the NY scarf. And the teeny little ball of yarn that was left did in fact have another purpose in it's life - it became a cat toy. Arrg. I think I'm come down harder on the cat for that if I didn't understand the visceral attraction to yarn that he feels too. We just express it differently.
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*Usual tactic for emotional outbursts - calm her down, comfort her if she needs it, then explain that she's mad/frustrated etc, and that's okay, but next time, no throwing books/screaming/etc. Works pretty well, although I feel a bit granola crazy when we break into this routine at the mall. Oh well.
**I was also planning on watching - savoring - my long-saved, much-anticipated season final of CSI. HOWEVER. It has been deleted. I was tempted to delete all of his historical documentary thingies, but decided that would be shallow & vindictive. I don't mind shallow, but I do try to avoid vindictiveness, it's a bad color for me.

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

Oooo, Nice.

I have to say, I am feeling quite brilliant today. Not necessarily smart, but like I'm so happy & content that I'm almost a light source in & of myself.
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(Note: Not bragging, just trying to recognize & appreciate. I know that life is not usually quite so great. Not sure if it's the baby hormones, the weather, or the yoga. I'll take it. Universe, this is not a challenge; we both know that I'm running solo parent for the next 4 days, and my daughter is teething. I know that this mellow will some, erm, shift its focus. But it's nice right now.)
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It's Wednesday, you see, so I've already been to yoga. Then I ran into an exboyfriend, and I felt really good about that because a) I'm all happy & serene & junk* & b) I did a good deed & told him about gripe water - he's been a dad for all of a week now, & looked tired & a little burnt out.
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Then I spent $150 dollars on less than one bag of groceries. Sigh. I remember when I was single, & broke, how I would really try not to run out of shampoo & tampons at the same time, because it would screw my grocery budget. Now, it's running out more than one kind of vitamins at a time & getting some cleaning supplies too. (I've been taking a whole food, three a day, prenatal vitamin. Rests in my stomach well, I can digest the iron okay. It's just bleepin' expensive. And I'm not even taking the priciest.)
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And maybe the organic real-juice gummi-bears come into it too - but they really do taste fantastic! (I did a comparison. Regular gummis, real-juice gummis, & real-juice organic gummis. Organic won hands down. Sadly, they are about a million dollars a kilo, so I indulge rarely.)
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At any rate, once I got home, I decided to bring my office outside, & catch up on some computer stuff - namely, organizing photos, roughing out some patters, updating projects on Ravelry (I'm mrsrobinson), etc. So I did this:
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(Can we hear a cheer for laptops & wireless networks? Not to mention decks & umbrellas?)
(Hula hoops in background are for Am's entertainment & have no real functionality as part of my office.)
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And this is my view:
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The cherry tree is just starting to blossom, the mayday tree is in bloom, and I can see the tulips stretching up. My 'it's going to be a hat' might actually move into the hat stage of its life soon. Sandy is bomping around happily. Life is good.
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How's your day?
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* I can't be the only person who always seems to run into exes when tired & haggard.

Tuesday, June 02, 2009

Several Open Post-It Notes

(As opposed to an open letter.) (And yes, I have big post-its. Like, 4" x 6". Lined.)
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Shawl That Counting/Yarn: I love you. You are very soothing too me, despite the yarn puke business & your resistance to spit splicing. (I know that's just because you're a superwash, & that your merino self & I will be very glad of your washability later on, once we're nursing.) I am enjoying this knit so much.
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Quesadilla I Had For Lunch: Why are you so angry at me? Were you & your salsa-y goodness jealous of the wild red prints of my dress, and that's why you were lunging so forcefully towards my lap? Or was it that the tale of the terrible woman who comes regularly to consume your brethren that inspired you to resistance? Either way, I won (*burp*).
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Mindless Drone Coworker Who Has Been Laid Off: I know I sort of promised to quit vilifying you. But it's so hard! First, you misnumbered the XXXXXXXX. Then you noticed the mistake, but you didn't fix it, you just put a sticky on saying "Shud be 003". I don't even know what to say, other than I vaguely regret that I am so happy that we don't work together anymore. You made so many mistakes, & they continue to haunt me. Not that I'm perfect, but geez. Shud? You shud know better.
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Cool Guy On The Train: First, you look so cool. Around my age, good haircut, impeccable pinstripe suit. (Niiiice. Not Gangsta, not Gangster, just a really well cut suit.) And you were even nice too - as we both approached the same seat, either you noticed my look of nervousness*, or you just decided to be cool and pause in such a way that it looked perfectly natural that you didn't get to the seat first, but you obviously let me have the seat. Either way, my motion sick self thanks you.
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Amoryn: I am always so happy to get you from daycare. I don't know if it's because you're happy to see me too, or if it's because I missed you all day, but I really, truly be live that working in the office part time & you being in daycare part time is so good for both of us. And I love you lots. I wish you didn't get so many colds & that they wiped your nose more often at daycare, but whatevs. Booger, schmooger. Give me a hug. My girl.
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Thighs & Lungs: When did you get so pathetic? I mean, I know we made it from Victoria to Kelowna on a bike together (apart from that water section by ferry - couldn't find a paddleboat, hah), so what has happened? When did 4 very easy, very flat kilometers become so hard? And don't even talk to me about the toddler in the bike trailer. That's way easier than the luggage on the trip. You're on notice - time to improve. (I know, we're carrying a baby & all, but seriously. This has to improve, or labour will be even less fun that it already is.)
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Feet & Brains: Thanks for remembering how to do your jobs, guys. Feet, good work on the clipless pedals/cleats. There was no panic wobble/tip over. Brain - I'm so pleased that a) at one point you put the allen keys in the frame bag & b) you remember how to make the appropriate adjustments on the brakes. (Not just random fiddling for show.)
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Husband: Wicked supper. Mmmmmm. Thanks for a) making me pregnant & b) making me a delicious supper that I ate enough of that I look about 3 months more pregnant than I am. You're so cool.
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Tulip Cardi: I think I'm going to frog you. You're really pretty, but your fabric is just to dense to drape like the versions I most admired on Ravelry. I've learned that looks can be deceiving, and I want you to think about what you've done, and how you can behave better next time. I'll think about it too.
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Dear Couch: My arse & I are coming to plant ourselves in your cushions. Get ready for some serious potato action.
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PS: Dear Blogger Spellcheck: Ravelry is so a word, & so is superwash.
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*I was girding my loins for the "Please give me your seat because I;m pregnant & the train makes me really sick if I'm standing" speech.

Monday, June 01, 2009

New, new, new!

I'm going to head out & plant some new annuals - but the keyboard is working Right Now, so I thought I'd blog some real quick. Things that are new, in the last month or two!
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The man is done the garden renos - 4 giant bags of dirt, a lot of deconstruction, reconstruction, & rototilling later, and we have this luscious veggie patch. Doesn't the dirt look like velvet? (And I mean the really nice cotton velvet - not velveteen, not that rayon/acrylic crap either.) I haven't taken any photos of the pods yet -they only got done yesterday.
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I did take a photo of Am appreciating the tulips - it was a little overcast, but I did talk her into wearing her headband on her head, not as a mask. (Which is what she prefers.)
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I also got a new a haircut - sorry no photos. But here's me & my old haircut with some yarn that I ordered to make a poncho/cape out of. I'm in love with the fiber content, and when it came on full-bag sale, I couldn't resist. I thought I could always overdye the "hot pink" if I needed. And surprise! I love it. It's more of a cerise, and while I may not look terribly true to color, the yarn is fairly well represented. Still no progress - it's rolling around in my subconscious. I have several good ideas though, and anticipate the launch once I'm done a hat I'm working on.
(I'm not really that pale, am I?)
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Another color (or seven, plus lace & glitz) is on a pile of new knickers I got myself. Fairly cheapies, but I figured that bright circus gitch are going to be better for my self-esteem than the terrible, pastel, maternity gotch.
(Cheery, no? For a $1/pair, how could I go wrong. I spent more on the bra*, but still. Cheap like borscht & bright like Vegas showgirl.)
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And these swooned their way into my life - they were on sale for $33 from $85. (Gravity Pope is having a sale on their sale items.) They're sneaker wedges - Nanette Lepore for Keds. Lurve them.
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I wore them on a date with Am & the man last week. And they make me happy. I'm looking forward to wearing them to the office at least once. But for now, I'm throwing on my garden clogs & heading out the door! (Oh! I also found new gardening gloves that are both narrow enough & long enough for my hands! Huzzah!)
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*I was going to say "But I wear bras more...", but that's not exactly true. It's actually no where near true. It's more like, I don't mind underwear, but I actively dislike almost every bra I've ever owned, & I learned long ago that the cheap bras make you pay more. They will gouge you & scrape you & leave welts on your tener flesh. Bah, bad bras.