Tuesday, February 21, 2006


We went to a new Szechuan restaurant this weekend that my in-laws had scouted out earlier that week. The second we sat down, the waiter, with eyes wide open in mock surprise, said to my parents-in-law, "Oh! Your daughter in law is so . . . beautiful! Very!" I couldn't help but be flattered even though I knew that "beautiful" was really code for "white." Very white. So white that I couldn't possibly eat with chopsticks and was given a fork soon after sitting down.

For those of you who haven't seen my picture, it's pretty evident that my coloring comes from the Norwegian end of my gene pool. People take one look at me and assume that I dine solely on mild flavored casseroles and jello laden "salads" straight from the church potluck. It is certainly my culinary heritage, I admit. Grandma didn't exactly have any recipes calling for chilis in the old recipe box.

Even my in-laws, who have known me for seven years and eaten with me countless times, forget that I like spicy foods. My mother in law serves an Indonesian dish that calls for ten sliced red chilis which is a favorite of mine. And still, every single time I say we should order something spicy they are genuinely surprised, "Oh? Do you like spicy food? Are you sure you can eat it? Really?" Seven years, people! The whiteness is still startling to them, I think.

I guess I didn't really have a point other than to remind you all that prejudice is very, very wrong. Don't prejudge Whitey, man. I have mad chopstick skillz.

Thursday, February 16, 2006

I feel like I should be sad, but I'm not.

If things hadn't gone terribly, horribly wrong in the summer of 2004, I'd have a one year old today. And while I feel some occasional sorrow that I never got to meet that baby, that I'll never be able to watch that baby grow up, I feel incredibly lucky that I have a cat-chasing, hair-pulling, paper-eating, stair-climbing, pigtail-wearing, eight-month-old Amelia. I feel like I should feel at least a little mournful today. But then Amelia offers me a bite of the magazine that she's trying to devour and laughs and I really don't feel sad. And then I feel a little guilty for not feeling sad.

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

But where are all the bonbons?

Amelia has decided that she's 14 years old and doesn't need to nap anymore. She's given up her morning nap and then fights and fights and fights her afternoon nap until she just can't hold out anymore and falls asleep the second I try to nurse her. If I put her in her crib, she sleeps for about half an hour and then is back up and ready to conquer the world. And eat lots of paper.

I think she might be addicted to paper actually, she will speed crawl across the room and cram it into her mouth if she spots any on the floor. Then she'll clamp her little jaws shut if I try to pry it out of her mouth and scream after I retrieve it. I think she might just be weird. Or a Cylon.

Between Fiona's intensive valentine production and paper strewing and Amelia's aggressive paper consumption, I think I might spend at least 80 to 90 percent of the average day picking up paper from the floor and removing it from Amelia's fists and mouth. I wouldn't be that worried about the paper, but I watch too much television and I learned on Grey's Anatomy that you can get mercury poisoning from eating a novel and I've applied that knowledge to my day to day parenting skills and now poor Amelia can't have any fun.

Anyhow, productive things like laundry folding and floor mopping and fun things like leisurely reading my email and blogging have become more difficult due to the paper wars. Oh and cat hair too! Amelia enjoys eating that as well.

I did have a few things I wanted to tell you though, I'd better get them off my chest while A takes her fifteen minute nap.

The Olympics: My favorite person from the Olympics thus far is the dude who stands in the start house with the skiers and tries to pump them up by shouting at them just like Hulk Hogan. Maybe it is Hulk Hogan! He always shouts both their first and last names, as if he doesn't know them very well and he's reading it off some sort of list, "You go Bode Miller! You ride that hill! Go Bode Miller!"

Valentine's Day: We had a terrible blizzard here yesterday and accumulated at least 3/4 of an inch of snow and Fiona's school was cancelled. She was one dejected kid as we walked away from school holding her little bag of Valentines. The party was rescheduled for today, if they can get the streets plowed in time. Three quarters of an inch is dangerous business, people.

Blog Land: There's been way too much upheaval lately with everyone running around and changing their addresses (I'm looking at you Tamara and Kristin) and coming back to blog land after extended absences (Hi Another Drink!) and changing all their templates and having crazy little blog wars and all kinds of nonsense. This is much too much for me to take. I have to go in to my bookmarks list now and change everything around and I don't have time for this. I have baby jaws to pry open and valentines to rescue.

Dick Cheney: I saw this link on Tosie Bonner's journal and had to repost it simply because the Janie's Got a Gun lyrics sound so much like Cheney's Got a Gun that it almost seems like Aerosmith had anticipated this very event. Aerosmith has ESP, you heard it here first.

Thursday, February 09, 2006

Oscar Smackdown 2006!

It is totally on this year. As you may remember from last year, my family's ongoing tradition is to get beaten by Andre in our Oscar competition celebrate the year's movies with a bloodthirsty friendly Oscar contest. Andre has won the past million few times and it's getting quite old. He needs to be stopped. I must win or at least see him be beaten. This is a difficult prospect since I haven't actually seen any of the movies that are nominated, but we're on relatively even footing there because he hasn't either. Family? Unite with me and bring down the dark movie overlord my husband. There WILL be a new winner crowned this year, I can just feel it.

Monday, February 06, 2006

Grey's Anatomy

I was quite disappointed that my theory on the meaning of "Code Black" was proven false. Based on the preview, I was pretty sure that Code Black stood for Zombie Attack. Wouldn't that have been more interesting than the tired old "live ammunition in a body cavity" episode we've seen time and time again? I bet zombies would have put Meredith out of her misery pretty effectively. Unless she stops moping over stupid Patrick McDreamy on the double, I will continue to hope for zombies.

We call her "Seven"

The Amelia walking video, remixed for all the dorks out there:

For all the normal people out there, this is a Battlestar Galactica reference. You really should give it a shot. Don't let the outer space thing and the robot thing keep you from enjoying a very good show. There's no stigma, really.

Friday, February 03, 2006


Back in the day one of my favorite teachers, Ms. M, used to tell us stories about her son. "Tell us a Brent story!" we'd say, hoping she'd let us procrastinate a little. Brent was a kid who got into so much mischief and was such a little character that she always had something new for us.

I remember one time she told us that she overheard him with the cat in the other room saying, "Come here kitty kitty, I want to cut your whiskers off." Thinking that he was just playing, she didn't investigate immediately. And then the cat came running out of the room, completely whiskerless.

Because of the the Brent stories, I was totally prepared today when Fiona came downstairs and said, "Mommy, do whiskers grow?" I knew. I knew that poor Ellis had been de-whiskered. "Why do you ask, Fiona? Is there something you need to tell me?"

"No," she said, "I'm just wondering if they grow."

"Tell me the truth. I'm going to know when Ellis comes down here anyway, did you cut off Ellis's whiskers?"

"Will you get mad at me if I tell you?"

"I'll tell you never to do that again since Ellis needs his whiskers."

"Well, maybe I cut off just a couple of his whiskers."

"A couple?"

"Well, maybe a few."

"Does Ellis have any whiskers left?"

Just then, Ellis came into the room, with 80% fewer whiskers than he had at the start of the day. Fiona looked at him and obviously felt bad. "I'm sorry Ellis. I didn't mean to cut your whiskers off."

If only I had a classroom, I would have the best Brent stories.

Thursday, February 02, 2006

"She's not a baby, she's a toddler now!"

According to Fiona, that is. Watch the video and judge for yourself.

Note from Andre: That's just my "talkin' to the baby" voice. My "normal" voice makes women weak and men weep. Uh, really!

Note from Tavia: Please don't listen to my goofy babytalk either.