Tuesday, February 24, 2009

No, Gus, No!

Once upon a time, these brackets held horizontal blinds. Currently, the blinds are in a million pieces and the brackets are lonely:

What you can barely see in this pic is that these windows used to be entirely covered in plastic:

Big dog meets flimsy shoe shelves. Winner: dog.

Poor Barbie didn't stand a chance:

Neither did the Disney Princesses. No prince saved this day:

Aidan's favorite Care Bear. There are great battles fought here over this Care Bear:

The offender, looking snazzy in his new coat:

Monday, February 23, 2009

Why I'm a hypocrite

I'm fickle and have arbitrary standards. Evidence:

Things you will not see in our house:

* Bratz dolls
* Play weapons
* Video games of any variety
* SpongeBob Squarepants anything
* Pants with writing on the butt, mini-skirts, anything with "bling"
* Childrens' programming on any channel other than PBS
* Movies that depict graphic violence, or anything more intense than a first kiss

Things you will see in our house:

* The Les Miserables sountrack, to which Isabel knows all the words (including "Master of the House")
* A recording of Pink's "Dear Mr. President," to which Isabel knows most of the words
* Soundtracks for Rent and Hedwig and the Angry Inch, both of which I try not to play around the kids but sometimes I can't help myself
* Several books of art, including full nudes
* Political propaganda on the bumper of the car, in the front yard, on the cork board
* A copy of The Princess Bride, which we watch in full - death, violence, kissing included
* Jonas Brothers CDs. They're so stinking cute and wholesome and what-not.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

A late-winter walk.

Cold. It is still cold. But the sun shone today and we've been sorely lacking in sunshine. So out we went, with the kids and our new dog Angus.

This is why we can never find our shoes. Aidan and the cat door. It's also the reason Nick and I are damned lucky to be alive, as there's no light at the top of the basement stairs.

It was brisk but lovely outside. It won't last long - more snow is slated for Wednesday.

Isabel and Gus, checking out the street before crossing. Well, Belle was checking the street. Gus was checking out the neighbor's dog.

I love this photo. Great light and shadows.

Isabel. When did she get so grown up?

Saturday, February 7, 2009

An open letter to TLC

Re: Commercial for the newest episode of "Jon & Kate Plus 8"

Dear TLC:


"Dads" is the plural form of "dad." As in, "Dads don't watch TLC!" See? If you're counting on your fingie-wingies, it's more than one little piggy.

"Dads" is plural and plural only. If you want a shorthand way to say "Dad is," what you're looking for is not plural, but what's known as a contraction: "Dad's." As in, "Dad's in charge."

NOT, "Dads in charge." Unless there's suddenly more than one Dad on "Jon & Kate Plus 8." Which I'm assuming there's not, because all of America has seen what a pain in the ass Kate would be to live with, thanks to your show.

You're The Learning Channel. The Learning Channel.

For fuck's sake.

Friday, February 6, 2009

First grade curriculum. And stuff.

I'm antsy. Three posts in one day. I finished one work project tonight (take my word for it, flash drives are just about the most boring thing ever to write about... although, to be fair, not quite as boring as keyboards) and am not ready to continue with my next project until tomorrow (even though this is one of the ones that makes business writing drudgery worth it - scripting an internal commercial). Too jittery to sleep, too cold out to go for a walk.


I bought our first grade books today. Signed up for the three-month trial of Amazon Prime and got free two-day shipping. Now, I'll be honest, I don't even know what Amazon Prime is. Sounds like a Transformer native to South American tree canopies. I do know that I can opt out before they charge me $79, and I know that signing up got me free two-day shipping. I remember, back in college, leaving the campus bookstore with my bag bursting at the seams, filled with straws. Why straws? Because they were FREE. Tell me it's free and I'll sign up. Thank you very much.

So, by Tuesday we should have received, and paid NO (happy dance here) shipping for:

That Usborne World History Encyclopedia makes me a bit nervous. Isabel's a sensitive kid and I suspect she's going to think that picture is scary. And the trouble with scary covers is that, unlike scary pictures inside the book, it can't just be paperclipped to another page. I may have to break out a paper grocery bag and fashion an old-school cover for that one. (I have a nostalgic urge to write "NKOTB 4eva!" on it.)

Cool site for classical music


It's free. Yeah, baby. Free.

Thank you, ClassicCat, for saving me a small fortune. At a rate of one composer per week (this week was Bela Bartok, by the way), I figure ClassicCat is saving us a few hundred dollars a year. When something really catches our fancy, I buy it from iTunes (hello, Nutcracker!). Otherwise, I save the freebie link on my handy-dandy bookmarks page and we're good to go!


I think so. Yes?

Refresh. Refresh, refresh, refresh.

Okay. Not perfect, but good enough for me.

I've got to do something about the photos, though. Holy huge pictures.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Why my weblog looks like crap

Because I don't know how to work the damned templates. In real life, I'm busting out every variation of the "f" word you can imagine, and some that even sailors and truck drivers haven't thought up yet. Here, I'm being reserved and will instead say that I am most perturbed. MOST PERTURBED.

I hear that typepad is good blogging software...

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Chinese New Year

This past week at co-op, we celebrated Chinese New Year. It was a great time - we ordered Chinese food and ate it off of authentic Chinese bowls, with chopsticks. Thanks to one mom whose brother lived in New York City's Chinatown years ago, we had many other authentic items as well - a child-sized kimono, a parasol, a tea set... There was an activity table with coloring pages and other games, and a display of the different animals used in Chinese years, with personality traits said to be associated with people born during each year. We made Chinese lanterns, read books and, finally, held a parade (several parades, actually, so that the kids could take turns with the different parade costumes).

There are, of course, pictures: