Tuesday, January 31, 2006

#10 is my favorite

Stolen from Professional Slacker who stole it from Rude Cactus. Ahh, the internet. Why bother thinking of new ideas? There are plenty of things out there to copy instead.

Ten Top Trivia Tips about Tavia!

  1. Tavia has enough fat to produce 32 bars of soap.
  2. The canonical hours of the Christian church are matins, lauds, prime, terce, sext, none, Tavia and compline.
  3. Tavia is the traditional gift for a couple on their third wedding anniversary!
  4. While performing her duties as queen, Cleopatra sometimes dressed up as Tavia.
  5. Every day in the UK, four people die putting Tavia on.
  6. The Eskimos have over fifty words for Tavia.
  7. Antarctica is the only continent without Tavia.
  8. Tavia can turn her stomach inside out.
  9. Tavia cannot burp - there is no gravity to separate liquid from gas in her stomach.
  10. The condom - originally made from Tavia - was invented in the early 1500s!
I am interested in - do tell me about

Monday, January 30, 2006

I'm sad

Haloscan made me sad today. I went back into my archives to read about the day that Amelia was born and saw that Haloscan has deleted all my comments. All of the sweet congratulations from all of my computer friends are gone now. Damn, I should have printed them all out.

I hate you Haloscan.

Friday, January 27, 2006

15 years ago, before the flying cars...

I'm not coming up with anything exciting to post about from the homefront. Fiona did tell us that her career choices for the future are (picture her counting these off on her fingers): "Number one, doctor. Number two, rocket ship driver. Number three, grave-taker-carer-of-er." I thought it was pretty cute, but not quite enough to make a whole entry out of.

Anyhow, I was digging through some of the old letters I sent to my best friend when I first went off to college. (I have the letters because I intended on scanning them all from both of us and putting them in a scrapbook, so she gave them to me and the closest I got to completing this project was to put them in my sock drawer where they've been for the past five years.) I digress. One of the letters details how my freshman year boyfriend wants to take a break and think about our relationship and how quickly it's moving. Tragically, I don't take this as any sort of warning sign that he's just not that into me, but that's not the funny part. The amusing part is my description of email in the year 1991:

I told him if we weren't going to see each other, he would at least have to leave letters for me on the computer (it's really cool, I'll explain in a bit) and he said OK. I walked him to the stairs and kissed him good night [blather, blather about midterms, my Russian class, and my roommate] But anyhow let me tell you about the computers. You go to this computer store and get yourself this handy-dandy password - very hush, hush secretive type stuff and with that you can get into this system called UNIX. You can leave letters for other people in this system and they can come by and get it on any other computer on campus. It's really quite cool. Also you can talk to other people by just typing stuff in while they're logged in to the system. I know I sould like this really big computer geek and you're expecting me to turn into a blind, hunchbacked [name of biggest geek in our high school] type, but really, everyone here uses it and it's quite fun. OK, now that you think I'm a dork, let's move on to some other subject!

Wouldn't Past Tavia be surprised by Future Tavia? Poor little Past Tavia, who lived before www dot anything and didn't know the term "e-mail." Little did she know that she'd eventually marry someone she met on "the computers."

Sunday, January 22, 2006

So damn proud of those boys

The Seahawks are Superbowl bound and I am just overjoyed. Those guys have worked their tails off this year. Andre and I have been sitting here in our 12th man gear just cheering them on all day. Woohoooo! Superbowl baby!

Ok, well, that's what I would be saying if we were actually football fans. Actually, this is an unedited transcript of a conversation that took place on our couch just moments ago:

Andre: [Flips on the news after watching Grey's Anatomy.] Huh! Looks like the Seahawks won.
Tavia: They did?
Andre: Yep.
Tavia: Huh!
Andre: What does the 12th Man thing mean?
Tavia: I don't know, we should Google it.
Andre: [Watching the seemingly never-ending news coverage of the win.] Matt Hasselbeck plays for the Seahawks?
Tavia: You didn't know that? Even I knew that.
Andre: Isn't he married to Elizabeth from Survivor?
Tavia: Yeah*. She's on the View now.
Andre: Huh!

*Edited to add that even this little tidbit isn't true. Elizabeth from Survivor is married to Tim Hasselbeck who plays for the NY Giants. Matt is Tim's brother. Huh!

Thursday, January 19, 2006

And the prize goes too...

The Number One Conversation You Don't Want To Overhear On the Baby Monitor:

Fiona: (crying) There's some more in my room.
Andre: There's more in your room?
Fiona: Yes, I hid it under my drawer. (sniffle, sniffle)
Andre: Under your drawer?! Is it just what fell out of your underpants?
Fiona: Yes, it landed on the carpet and I picked it up and hid it under my drawer.
Andre: Why did you do that?
Fiona: I didn't want you to get mad at me! (crying)
Andre: Did you get any poop in your bed?
Fiona: No, it was just all in my underpants.

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Meme tagged

HG tagged me with this one:

The first player of this game starts with the topic "five weird habits I have" and people who get tagged then write an entry about their five weird habits as well as state this rule clearly. In the end, you need to choose the next five people to be tagged and link to their web journals. Don't forget to leave a comment in their blog or journal that says you have been tagged? (assuming they take comments) and tell them to read yours.

I had a hard time coming up with some of these. I asked Andre to tell me what some of my weird habits are and he just used that opportunity to complain about me leaving napkins on the plates and then putting them into the sink when I cleared the table. That's not a habit, that's laziness.

  1. I always leave my water glass from the night before on my nightstand until I have like 12 glasses on my nightstand and we don't have any clean glasses in the house because they're all in the bedroom. It would be so much easier if I would just take my glass downstairs each morning and put it in the dishwasher.
Oh wait! That's not my habit, that's Andre's habit.
  1. I bite my nails. I'm trying to stop since I made a deal with Andre that I'd quit if he quit smoking and he did. I've pretty much managed to control myself, but I still bite my pinky nails every once in a while. I like to think of my pinky nails as my nicoderm patch. It's all about the baby steps. I also have to keep them very short or I'll start biting them again. I don't like to feel my nails above my fingertips. Yuck.
  2. I don't wear any jewelry except my wedding ring. I have an appreciation for pretty jewelry and I have a whole bunch of jewelry that my mother in law has given me (because she apparently hasn't noticed in the seven years she's known me that I don't wear any jewelry), I just don't ever put it on. Sometimes I think about putting it on, but then I feel like I'm going to the opera or something with all my jewels and I just put it back in the jewelry box.
  3. I like to read two books at once. I usually have one that I leave by my bed and one that I carry all over the house (or to work when I was working).
  4. I pick my split ends compulsively. This has been a lot better since I've been keeping my hair shorter and actually getting it trimmed more than once a year.
  5. I'm really having trouble thinking of another habit. I'm sure my mother or sister could add another one in here. Most of the rest of the things I'm thinking off are a direct result of laziness or procrastination and not really a "habit" per se.
I'm going to give this one to Tamara and Allie, but only if they want to and are looking for something to write about. I think this meme has traveled so far and wide already that I don't have many other bloggers to pass it on to; everyone's been tagged already. See? Procrastination again. It never pays, children. It never pays.

Reading List 2006

I'm just going to put in the titles so I can finish these up for the year. I stopped keeping track, so these are the ones I remember:

The Well of Lost Plots by Jasper Fforde.

A Million Little Pieces by James Frey. (How on earth did anyone think this was non-fiction?)

Stolen Lives by Malika Oufkir

The Mole People: Life in the Tunnels Beneath New York City by Jennifer Toth.

How to Get Your Kids to Eat But Not Too Much by Ellyn Satter

1-2-3 Magic: Effective Discipline for Children 2 to 12 by

Lost in a Good Book by Jasper Fforde. Loving the continuing Thursday Next series. And finally discovered where Fraulein N got her name!

Siblings Without Rivalry: How to Help Your Children Live Together So You Can Live Too by Adele Farber and Elaine Mazlish. I decided we really needed this book after hearing us say, "Why can't you eat your dinner, Fiona? Even your baby sister has eaten more than you." Yeah, just trying not to screw up the kids. Too much.

Parable of the Sower
by Octavia Butler. Loved it. Tale of living in and escaping from post apocalyptic California. Al Gore would love this book since the apocalypse is caused by global warming.

Operating Instructions: A Journal of My Son's First Year
by Anne Lamott. I love Anne Lamott and this is a great read. It was definitely appropriate reading too as Amelia reaches the one year mark, I was nodding my head with recognition the whole time. I especially appreciated that she too feared her child would grow up to be a Republican.

Incredible Years: A Troubleshooting Guide for Parents of Children Aged 3 to 8 by Carolyn Webster-Stratton. We got this during the height of Fiona's temper tantrums. Helpful. Doesn't make you feel like a crap parent even when your kid is totally out of control.

by Octavia Butler. A science fiction novel that combines time travel with social issues. Her modern day narrator experiences slavery first hand while the book explores the question of how slaves and slave owners are made. After reading this, I'm pretty sure the author of Time Traveler's Wife drew some inspiration from Butler.

I Capture the Castle by Dodie Smith. Very Jane Austen-like story. I loved it and was quite saddened to find out that Dodie Smith hadn't published much else besides 101 Dalmatians. I wanted to read more of her work.

The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini. Story of two friends in modern day Afghanistan. Eye opening and a good story. A little heavy on the Victorian-like use of coincidence to forward the plot for my taste, but a good, engaging story that made me loathe the Taliban.

Baltimore Blues, Charm City, Butcher's Hill, In Big Trouble, and The Sugar House by Laura Lippman. This series was recommended to me by a friend and I'm really enjoying it as you can see. Maybe a little too much. Perhaps I should take a break and read something else. The main character is a woman about my age and I like that she's not perfect.

Anne of Green Gables by L. M. Montgomery. This book never fails to make me cry. Even more so now that I'm a mother for some reason. Gosh, I love Anne Shirley.

Slaughterhouse Five by Kurt Vonnegut. I was surprised to find out this is on the Modern Library's 100 best novels list. I shouldn't have been, because it's a great book.

Night by Elie Weisel. Horrifying and heartbreaking - Weisel's story of his time in concentration camps in Poland and Germany. This is a short book, but it still wasn't easy to get through.

Like Water for Chocolate by Laura Esquivel. Beautiful story and a quick read. Definitely worth a read if you haven't read it before.

The Beekeeper's Apprentice by Laurie R. King. A re-read. Still love this book.

The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown. Man, I am such a sucker! I've read this one before and knew I didn't like it all that much. The whole book goes basically like this: Someone gets killed, try to guess his passwords, "scholarly" exposition, someone tries to kill narrator, try to guess the passwords, "scholarly" exposition, try to guess the passwords, too-easily-guessable villain is revealed and defeated, "scholarly" exposition, neat and wholely implausible ending.

Every Secret Thing by Laura Lippman. I didn't like this one as much as her Tess Monaghan series. Maybe it was the whole theme of child murderers, I don't know. I just wasn't that into it.

Empress Orchid by Anchee Min. The story of a concubine who ends up ruling China. A sympathetic view of Tzu Hsi's rise to power. Interesting, but the historical novel genre and I just aren't meant to be best pals, I guess.

Pop Goes the Weasel by James Patterson. Everytime I finish one of his books I vow never to read another one. And then I do. I don't even really like them and am now quite convinced that James Patterson hates women and uses his writing to act out all of his violent fantasies against womankind. In this last one, all of the women were killed by a serial killer in spectacularly awful, violent ways. The one time a man was killed? Neat shot to the head. And it's been that way in all of the books I've read by him. Women stolen to be sex slaves and then killed (in more than one book), women tortured, women serial killed. I'm kind of scared to be writing this because I'm afraid James Patterson might read it and come and find me.

Thursday, January 12, 2006

7 month Amelia, now with a shinier coat and fewer hairballs

When Fiona was a baby, even after she learned to crawl and walk, she preferred to be carried everywhere. I practically lived with her stuffed into the backpack, even just working around the house. She wanted to be right next to me, if not the center of attention, then at least close enough to touch me. She preferred nursing to all other activities and would have been happy to just lay in my lap all day having me snuggle her.

Amelia is the total opposite. She doesn't snuggle into my shoulder and cuddle up, she twists away to look at what's going on around her. She tries to launch herself out of my arms so she can crawl around and eat things off the floor. As I was fixing lunch for Fiona today, she was trying so hard to get down that I almost dropped her. My kitchen floor isn't exactly sparkling, but I had vacuumed up the larger chunks and I put her down to roam the kitchen. Straight for the catbowl, and the girl is fast. She managed to get a handful of catfood into her mouth before I could get back across the room to her and from the expression on her face, thought it was quite delicious. Nothing like a little added taurine for an aging cat's kidney health to make a baby happy. I'm glad she got the hairball formula because I caught her trying to eat cat hair earlier today. Straight from the cat.

One of the preschool moms just had a baby and it surprises me every day just how much bigger Amelia already is. How on earth did she get to be seven months old? She's closer to her first birthday than she is to her birth. We just finished switching the guest room over to be her nursery and got the crib set up. As much as I like the idea of her sleeping all night in her crib and as nice as it will be to have my side of the bed back, I'm going miss sleeping with her at night. That's the only time I really get any snuggles. She still tries to get as close to me as she can when she's sleeping, her legs curled up against my stomach and her face next to mine. If she were more an all day cuddler like Fiona, I think I'd be more anxious to move her out.

She's standing all the time now, usually with a favorite toy in hand, gnawing on it as she balances. She tried to take one step yesterday and promptly face planted directly into the coffee table. She has her two bottom teeth and has used them quite effectively and often while nursing. I hope that even though she's had a taste of human blood she doesn't grow up to be a cannibal or a vampire.

She's also learning to play games. Her favorite is "crawl as fast as I can and try to make it out the door and up the stairs before mom catches me" and she giggles when I capture her. She also likes to climb all over Fiona and pull her hair. Fiona doesn't enjoy that game nearly as much as Amelia does.

Oh, and she's armed and totally dangerous:

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

I know you're out there

I see you! I know you're there. Did you know it's National Delurking Week? Yeah, I had no idea either until HG mentioned it. So do your patriotic duty and let me know you're out there. Just raise that hand and say "here!" Come on, you can do it.

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Hold me.

Standing up! Posted by Picasa

Monday, January 02, 2006


A little late, but here are the things that I'd like to do this year. I'm not making any hard-on-myself resolutions this year. Of course I need to do things like lose that pesky baby weight, but a resolution never really helps with that for me. This year I want to resolve to do some of the little things that will make my life happy:

1. Wear more lipstick. I think I look better with lipstick on. My lips are very pale without it and it makes me look a little ill when I don't have it on. Everyone needs something that makes them feel a little prettier.

2. Get a pedicure. I've never had one and my feet need some love.

3. Read more. I joined Paperback Book Swap and the books are rolling in. I need to keep my mind busy with things other than whether or not Walt made the polar bears appear on the island. (Because there was the whole bird thing and the polar bear on the comic book and the polar bear gift as a baby, but then in the training movie there were polar bears. I just can't decide. And how did he choose that exact moment to start a chat session with the hatch's computer? Are the others monitoring the hatch? Is it even Walt on the other end?)

4. Enjoy my kids as much as possible before going back to work.

5. Buy some new jeans. Maybe even two pairs. Shop for them without children in tow. Don't wait to lose the baby weight, just do it. Heck, maybe even a new shirt too.

6. Go see at least four movies this year with Andre.

7. See at least two movies with my mom. Girl movies. Movies Andre won't see. Yay chick flicks!

Sunday, January 01, 2006

Twelve Days of Christmas

I hope you all had a wonderful holiday! I was going to do a clever 12 days of Christmas song with all of our holiday happenings in it concluding with "One child puking on the couch" but then I couldn't really think of anything else to go in the song.

Fiona got a call from Santa Claus two days before Christmas because she was being a complete four year old with the whining and the crying and the stink face and the hitting. She was trembling (with fear? with happiness that Santa called her? with awe?) as she talked to him and I think it did help somewhat as she got through the next couple of days without as much drama.

Santa rewarded her on Christmas with a toy kitchen. She likes it, I think. She better. That thing took Andre almost four hours to put together. We probably could have just given her candy and she would have been just as happy. And now we've set the bar for next year. Damn.

Tamara and I went to go get manicures one day with my salon gift card. It wasn't nearly as luxurious as I had imagined it and I'm glad I didn't spend "real" money on it. There were no serving boys clad only in loincloths who fanned us gently with palm fronds as our maidservents placed petit fours in our mouths while our nails dried. I did get a two minute hand massage which is more luxury than I've had for awhile so I guess that's something.

For my mother's birthday Tamara, Fiona, and I took her to tea at the Queen Mary. Andre grudgingly stayed home with Amelia but I doubt he would have enjoyed taking turns with the rest of us wearing the official Queen Mary tiara. Just talking about it right now kind of makes me want to eat some more tea sandwiches. Mmmmm....tea sandwiches.

Andre and I threw a huge New Year's Eve party complete with seventeen kinds of appetizers and wine tastings. It lasted until three a.m. and only ended when the cops came. It's hard to look our neighbors in the eyes today after what some of our party goers were doing on the front lawn. (Actually we ate some delicious steaks and then I cleaned the kitchen and we watched television until I fell asleep in the rocking chair before midnight. New Year's Rockin' Eve indeed!)

And today, to start the New Year right, Amelia stood up by herself. Not pulled up, STOOD. UP. Ay yi yi.

Happy New Year!

2005 resolutions in review

These weren't supposed to be resolutions per se, just "reminders to myself." Let's see how I did, shall we?
  • Don't drink so damn much soda or you'll gain 60 pounds and be an enormous whale for your 10th college reunion.
I ended up gaining 55 pounds when I was pregnant with Amelia - same as with Fiona. I don't think it had much to do with soda though since I went through a major sparkling water craving. I think it had a lot more to do with all those delicious frappucinos that Starbucks kept making for me, the bastards.
  • If you cleaned a little every day instead of waiting until the house was a sty and trying to do it all on the weekends, you might actually enjoy your weekends.
Why is this so difficult for me? I hate cleaning. I've found that if the house is really clean I can maintain it for a while, but if it's messy to start with I just can't rectify it and it gets worse.
  • One game of Candyland or Hi Ho Cherry-oh might be painful, but won't actually kill you.
I still hate Candyland and Hi Ho Cherry-oh. But I do play more with Fiona. I'd rather play pretend with her or make a craft with her or something than play those godawful games.
  • Hiring a babysitter could be a very good thing.
We did manage to get out a few times before Amelia was born, only a couple of times since then. Now that she's eating more solids it will be easier to get out again. Especially now that the grandparents are in town! Whoo hoo free childcare!
  • Bringing lunch to work once in a while might actually save you a load of cash. And if you quit buying mochas too you could save $50 a week. Enough for a babysitter and a movie!
Um yeah, I was terrible about this when I was working downtown. And now I miss it so. Oh delicious Ethiopian and Indian buffet and falafel and turkey pesto sandwiches, I long for you every day while I'm eating grilled cheese with Fiona.
  • Putting the laundry away after you fold it mght be painful, but won't actually kill you. Plus, you won't have to walk around naked in the cold house in the morning wondering which basket might have clean underpants.
Um yeah, I still suck at this. I HATE folding laundry.
  • A budget and Quicken - messy bills and accounts make you crazy and you know it.
This one is Andre's fault. He won't let me buy Quicken because he claims to have a mythical place online where he can get it "practically free with rebates" yet it never materializes in our house. I'm totally buying it if I don't have a copy by February.
  • Try to decide on a name before the kid is born.
Check! We totally did this. I still like Josephine though.
  • Clean out the garage. Please. I'm begging you.
Andre did this! Well, enough that we can actually fit a minivan in the garage. It's like a little slice of heaven on earth.