Friday, December 29, 2006

poker? i hardly know her!

tried acupuncture this afternoon as a way to kickstart real labor. have a follow-up appointment on saturday if i'm still pregnant then.

i've never tried acupuncture before. really wasn't bad.

Monday, December 25, 2006

deck us all....

Deck us all with Boston Charlie,
Walla Walla, Wash., an' Kalamazoo!
Nora's freezin' on the trolley,
Swaller dollar cauliflower alley-garoo!

Don't we know archaic barrel,
Lullaby Lilla boy, Louisville Lou?
Trolley Molly don't love Harold,
Boola boola Pensacoola hullabaloo!

Bark us all bow-wows of folly,
Polly wolly cracker n' too-da-loo!
Hunky Dory's pop is lolly gaggin' on the wagon,
Willy, folly go through!

Donkey Bonny brays a carol,
Antelope Cantaloup, 'lope with you!
Chollie's collie barks at Barrow,
Harum scarum five alarum bung-a-loo!

- Walt Kelly.

Saturday, December 23, 2006

the baby is a tease

i am really getting sick of the daily 'here's some contractions for ya, now i'm done' pattern. by this point i'll probably ignore them when the real thing happens. "yeah right baby, you're not playing me for a fool any longer!"

i'm mildly annoyed because i'm coming down with a cold. some family was in the midwifery waiting room while we waiting more than half an hour for my appointment (the practice was having a particularly chaotic day), and among the four kids was a boy about a year younger than boo. boo starts playing with the boy, after which the father tells me that boy has a cold. i pull boo to the other side of the room. father allows boy to play with all doorknobs in the place. i ask the receptionist for a sanitizing wipe the second the family leaves. i'm sorry, but if your kid has a cold and you have another parent around, don't stay in the freaking waiting room full of pregnant women!

another moment of 'ewww' - for some reason, i couldn't find the breast pump i used last time. i know i kept it. but i bought a manual one just in case i need one again. i researched them on amazon and saw that lovely 'new and used starting at....' pricing. used??? eewwwww...... eeked me out more than the concept of used bluetooth headsets for cellphones. ewwww. ewwww!

dorota's easy quiche recipe

made this tonight with asparagus and swiss. yum!

-1 frozen deep-dish pie crust
- 3 eggs
- 1 cup milk
- 1 Tablespoon flour
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/8 teaspoon pepper
- "a dash" of ground nutmeg
- about 1 1/2 cups grated cheese (Swiss, cheddar, whatever...) *note: too much cheese can make it runny!
- either fried onion (or green onion)
- a bunch (a cup or so?) of cubed ham, or cooked turkey, chicken, whatever... spinach, mushrooms? whatever sounds good.

bake pie crust. Mix up eggs, then mix that up with all the other stuff, and pour into hot crust. Bake at 350 for 35-45 or so minutes, stick a knife into the center and if it comes out clean it's done.

--let it sit for some time to cool, otherwise it'll be runny if you try to serve it right away.

this was really easy, as described. i think earlier quiche failures stemmed from an intimidating recipe in a old version of the moosewood cookbook, and a bizarre real simple magazine version that used eggbeaters and a bottle of blue cheese salad dressing. i also tend to add too much cheese to just about anything, and probably tried putting in too much veggies as well.

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

nothing yet

just a bunch o' contractions, like last night.... not at the magic 10-minutes-apart, usually 20, but not super-consistent.

had a midwifery appointment this afternoon, they've checked and not much is actually going on. but they kinda hinted that this on-again, off-again contraction thing tends to happen a couple of days before the real thing....

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

pattycake, pattycake, bakerman

realized something yesterday:

boo enjoys cooking quite a bit, particularly soup and cookies. while he'll chow down on a couple of bowls of soup for lunch or dinner after we make it, he doesn't eat so many cookies. currently the kitchen is overflowing with gingerbread and chocolate chip, but he'll still ask for an oreo instead.

Thursday, December 14, 2006

miracle on lombard st

boo and i came home after school yesterday to find that the drug house two doors down has been boarded up.

turns out that the nonprofit land trust that owns the land under the house was able to evict the homeowner (who would have been in foreclosure on her mortgage anyway) on the grounds that illegal activities at the property violated her agreement with the trust. i talked to the exec director of the trust, who was apologetic that the process took so long - they had been working with their legal team for five months to make this happen.

well, it was faster than multiple calls to the police.

the activities in the house were worse than we had suspected. based on a conversation with a neighborhood (but alas, not my neighborhood) cop, we thought it was pot - all the activity was at night, nobody around during the day, people seemed to be carrying baggies. lo and behold, it was crack and prostitution.

last night was the first night in many, many months with no driveup traffic on our street. even the amount of driveby traffic seemed to be less. "honey, look at the nothing!" i exclaimed to my husband.

the land trust will buy the house back from the mortgage company, renovate it, and resell it over the summer.

it's a huge, huge relief to us, and we are incredibly grateful to the portland community land trust for doing this. best holiday present we could have received.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

no news = no news

for the billions of you who read this,

nothing's going on. no baby yet. a bunch of 'holy heck it's a contraction' but nothing in a pattern yet. i'm running around like a headless chicken getting last-minute stuff done, trying not to panic as the new house stuff seems to be getting delayed, and as usual trying to figure out how to be in 3 places at once.

so i'm takin' half a unisom, and hoping for some sleep.

Friday, December 08, 2006

i'm too sexy for PWC

a former coworker emailed me to say that the filter on the county's internet connection has blocked my blog for sex acts.

i feel so..... dirrrrty.

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

less hysterical, but still in pain

i knew i was miserable and nuts yesterday, so i put off making a decision on this until i could try to sleep and see if i felt better this morning. i'm not in quite as excruciating pain as yesterday, but still in enough pain that i made the call and have stopped working from now until sometime this spring....

i love my job, i love what i do, and there's a part of me that truly has a hard time letting go of it. but i can't walk without wincing! it's time to give up and stay off my feet as much as possible.

Monday, December 04, 2006

stupid, stupid, stupid

just got back from midwives appointment.

no, they won't change my due date, despite what the ultrasound that THEY ORDERED BECAUSE THEY THOUGHT I WAS TOO LARGE FOR THEIR DUE DATE said. ("late ultrasounds are notoriously inaccurate." good, because i will not pay for it when the bill comes.) gee, maybe i could consult with their doctor next week and talk about scheduling a c-section. however, since they're not changing my due date, and they won't want to do a c-sec until i'm 39 weeks, which they think is a month from now. as opposed to 2 weeks from now.

oh, and the pain which keeps me from sleeping? take tylenol! and ambien??


thankfully i'm headed to a midwives' appointment this morning.

i've had insomnia throughout the pregnancy, but last night was something else. (it's 5:30 am and should still be 'tonight', actually.) i'm really miserably uncomfortable, and the heating pad and tylenol have done nothing. i usually haven't been in pain to the point that i can't sleep, and i certainly haven't been in pain to the point of tears until now. i know the hormones are going bezerk right now - my skin's breaking out again, i can feel that i'm getting ready to lactate again - but i'm not going to be able to get through much more of this. supposedly, this isn't labor yet. we had 'childbirth refresher class' over the weekend, where my main concern was being able to recognize labor since i didn't go through it at all last time.

i worked sunday and although i'm scheduled for several more shifts between now and the 17th - which i though was a safe end-date for working, when i was due mid-jan - i think i'm going to have to bail.

a not-so-small part of me is hoping that they either tell me i'm dilating and this will be over very soon, or for some reason they feel they should schedule a delivery well before the end of the month. as it is, i'm worried about keeping myself together this morning while getting boo ready for school and getting him to class. i could handle it if i didn't have to talk to anyone, but running the phalanx of kindergarten moms asking me how i am doing is a little more than i can deal with right now. that balls into the horrible feeling of disappointment i have about how that's gone, socially - it's a tense and divided group, essentially split between those who put up with Disastified Mom's crap and those who seek to avoid it - and I think that if we weren't all tiptoeing around the toxic one, some better friendships might have been made. As it stands now, however, I don't feel like I can call on anyone for help in that group, ang g-d knows nobody's offered any. Maybe if anyone had said, hey, what are your plans for boo when you're in the hospital delivering, can I help with that, I'd feel a hell of a lot better. Or at least able to tolerate a half-dozen half-hearted 'how are you feeling' queries every freaking morning.

6 am now. maybe i can feign some sleep for an hour.

Thursday, November 30, 2006

bunch o' stuff

1) baby is now, according to ultrasound, due dec 28.

2) restauranteurs, please do me a favor. stop using soup veggie mix. it's freaking obvious when there's square carrots, corn, peas and (bleagh) lima beans what's really in the 'primavera' or the 'navratan korma' or any of the other crappy incarnations i've seen this stuff used in. it's an insult to the intelligence of anyone who's ever been in a grocery store.

3) i got a service award at work for walking. or as the patron put it on the nomination form, "for sarah (big belly - pregnant) - she walked me around the library". i'm not sure what to make of this. um, it's my job.

4) chocolate comes from the cocoa plant. therefore, i'm hereby classifying it as a fruit/vegetable serving.

5) all things are good to go with the new house. yippee!

6) i can't fit into any of my shoes anymore, so i got a couple of pairs of not-too-slipperish-looking slippers. one looks like black shearling boots, and the other looks like black flats. why the heck didn't i think to do this all the time?? beats shoes. and i love shoes.

7) boo quote. after explaining that a sign stating 'no minors' meant that nobody under 21 years old could sit at the bar, he pipes up with 'i think you have to be 100 years old to sit there.' 'oh,' i said, 'so am i old enough?' 'no, mommy, you're nowhere near one hundred years old. you're only halfway there.' thanks, kiddo!!

Tuesday, November 28, 2006


gee, as soon as it was the day to leave my hometown after our week-long thanksgiving trip, that horrible pressure disappeared....

it struck boodad and i as funny that when we lived in manassas, going to rhode island was enjoyable enough to consider moving to the providence region (if only there were sufficient tech jobs). however, now that we're in portland, rhode island once again feels like the sleepy little hamlet that i ached to get out of as a teen.

there was also plenty of passive-agressive stuff to deal with, like my mother's insistence on giving me turn-by-turn driving directions when tooling around my old neighborhood. and my parents' out-of-control packratism. i truly, truly fear what will happen when, hopefully many years from now, i am called upon to clear out their house. my mom can't seem to grasp the concept of throwing anything out, or ceasing to accumulate multiples of things that aren't even in use. case in point, her 'sewing room'. it does indeed contain a sewing machine and a serger, as well as a cabinet full of fabrics that she bought while i was in grade school. however, nobody can get to these items, because there are bags and bags of paperwork, old newspaper articles, magazines and god-knows-what filling the floorspace. i have cleared out that room two times on previous visits, so i don't know how it reaccumulates all this gunk. in their bathroom, they have added an additional shelf for the multitudes of lavender and lily of the valley scented powders, bubble baths and body lotions that she's amassed - very few of which have ever been opened. my dad's office and the basement, both of which were bedrooms of mine at various points, are similarly deserving of enter-at-your-own-risk warning signs. i was hoping to dig into an old box of photos during this trip, but couldn't manouver in the basement at all.

we stayed in a hotel and rented a car, and it was worth every penny.

on a completely different note: someone has come up with a scent called in the library. eau de kickstool et dewey!

Sunday, November 26, 2006

get. it. out.

magically, the day after the last midwives' appointment, i started feeling very uncomfortable. lots of pressure and it feels like something/someone is heading down. it hurts, but it's not contractions. of course, this started the day i flew out of town for thanksgiving. i'm in new england right now, and not returning to portland until tomorrow night. the ultrasound is the next day. so a little part of me is hoping that i get told 'we can't let you go on much further, this baby comes out next week' or something like that. not another whole month.

Monday, November 20, 2006

carrying too much

last night i dreamed that i was in school again, and i was trying to carry my stuff and a friend's stuff and i just couldn't do it.

today i got told at my midwifery appointment that the baby seems a bit big for the projected due date, and i need an ultrasound to figure out the size and position. this may adjust the due date up, but i don't know by how much.

also, today a very spur-of-the-moment bid we made on a house was accepted. i saw this house when i was getting out of my hair appointment saturday, and was curious enough to look it up. we toured it with our agents later in the afternoon and put a bid on it that evening. the sellers want to close dec 15. we're planning to stay in our current house and move s-l-o-w-l-y and then put this house on the market in april or may. but yeah, a lot to do with a new baby. so we have a little more paperwork to do tonight, and may run out there again to look at phone jacks and electric plugs and things - the inspection will be done while we're gone, and this is a new house that is just being finished - we want to ask for plugs and jacks exactly where we want them.

oh yeah, and i have to pack, too. and i have a parent-teacher conference in 45 minutes. and i'd like to nap. me, carry too much?

Sunday, November 19, 2006

i give up on the rawk

only i could go to a $10 show and have it cost me almost $90.


made arrangements to go to show with friend. since the venue's website doesn't list box office hours, and i don't want to ping back and forth between various sides of town all afternoon, i decide to buy the tickets in advance online. so, two tickets plus service charge = $27. total rip, i know, i just get anxious that we'd get there and have it sold out.

friend calls in late afternoon; her girlfriend is quite ill due to bad seafood reaction. no biggie.

call another friend, who happens to be going to the show with housemates. great, he offers to buy the second ticket off me. except his housemates have a no-opening-band-because-we're-too-cool thing, and the band i'm there to see is the second of three playing and i don't want to stay for the headliner because i'm working tomorrow. arranged that he would call when they get to the venue, although this is now becoming if they go to the venue. of course, no call.

get out of show, which was good but eh.... it's my 5th time seeing them. they're getting crisper in their playing and i kinda like it messier. (as i said to the drummer last time, 'what the hell is wrong? i can hear what you're saying after your set, that's not supposed to happen.') get back to car. and yes, i will admit that i saw the 'no parking, loading zone' where i was, but it was at a theatre whose parking lot was completely empty - so i figured no loading was going to be done. i also figured being very close when very pregnant was worth risking a ticket - maybe a $25 fine? turns out that the theatre doing no loading at the time doesn't matter to the police - there's a $60 parking ticket on my windshield. (ps. could you at least use those funds towards answering your 'drug house hotline' at nonabsurd hours? like when i call at 9 pm on a saturday because my next-to-next door neighbors are dealing, and find out you're not taking calls until 6:30 am on monday, and 911 won't dispatch because the money exchanges are happening inside the house?) at least i warned the guy who almost took my space when i left that he'd likely get a ticket too if he stayed.

oh, and add the $2 diet coke. $89 for a ten dollar show. i give up.

Saturday, November 18, 2006

screwed priorities weekend

so this weekend there's a few things that i "should" be doing:

- i should be going to orycon to hear guest of honor cory doctorow speak tomorrow. also, i should have gone to see him speak at PSU thursday, but had no sitter and i'm guessing having a 5-yr-old sit through a talk on copyright issues is asking for disaster.

- i should hit the gem fair and restock on some beads.

- i'm working on sunday so these activities would have to happen saturday.

however, life gets in the way:

- i missed a hair appointment on thursday morning because it was a little more important to talk with a contractor about my sometimes-wet basement. i had to reschedule for saturday, noon, which means i won't be able to get from southeast to downtown by the time of cory's reading. (also, i noticed he's not on the booksigning/autograph schedule at all. hmpfh.)

- i'm trying not to spend oodles of money right before our trip back home for thanksgiving, and bead shows tend to be 'spendy for me. i'm also not so critically short on anything that would make it worth walking into a giant convention room of temptation.

so, saturday is haircut day, and at night i'm rawking out to dirty on purpose at the doug fir. wheee! beatrice, get yer earplugs on.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

yeah, baby!

i have figured out when the baby will be born.

my ultrasounds say jan 4, my midwives say jan 14. but thanks to a jaunt into town today, i realized the magic date will be jan 8.


because on that date this man will be in portland:

and so i'm imagining that this will be done by 7:30 pm, in time for Mr. Manilow to make his 8 PM Rose Garden show, having already performed the valiant deed of belting out LOOKS LIKE WE MADE IT!!! as Beatrice's head pops out.

how 'bout it, Barry?

storybook dream

during last night's dream i was at work at the library, but not in the usual way things happen there. i had to photocopy the reference desk schedule, but someone started it ahead of me and had screwed up by making it on the wrong size of paper and making way too many copies. and then we were all in a meeting, but we were sitting on the floor and i kept being bothered by the antics of a couple of coworkers who were tumbling around. (shades of boo's kindergarten?) everyone was dressed in black polo shirts and sweatpants, and the content of the meeting was banal. in my annoyance and boredom i grabbed a book of fairy tales and was surprised to find that i could pluck the delicate, fluffy clothing out of it, and put it on. i started wearing layered tutu-ish pink skirts and embroidered jackets straight from the book. there were little notes in the book from my english grandmother encouraging me to find these things, as well as some large cut-glass bottles of perfumes and a pair of shoes that looked like lampworked glass bottles. "have you done something sparkly?", my grandmother had written on top of one of the pages.

who knew, i'm cinderella.

Friday, November 10, 2006

may i have an exception, please?

good news: husband starts great new job at end of this month.

kinda good news: much better health insurance starting dec 1.

but there's a glitch: new health insurance does not have current midwives' practice or hospital where we intend to deliver in their network.

so i am: calling the hospital billing people trying to figure out if which makes more sense: paying more out of pocket, or switching providers and hospitals when i'm 8 months pregnant.

what i'd like: permission to have just one beer, please?

update: have talked to very helpful benefits person at hospital. they're adjusting my rates to come closer to what i'd pay if the hospital was in-network. (and actually, i think this will wind up being less than my current crapola insurance's in-network deal!)

new question: may i have a glass of champagne to celebrate the relief?

Saturday, November 04, 2006

a fine author

my son's kindergarten class has a lot of worksheet assignments. one is to read a book (they have buckets at their tables to choose from, including math, science, and poetry), then draw a picture based on the book, copy the title, and write a very brief description of the picture - even if it's a word or two, and they're encouraged to look through the book for words to use. sometimes this kind of exercise is done free-form, where they're making up the story instead of reading a book.

a couple of days ago my son came home with a sheet, and the 'words' he wrote were just jibberish. he hadn't copied the title in any legible way, and the writing below the picture was equally inscrutible. we told him we knew he could do better - especially since we've seen him copy words when he's wanted to write them. he said he was told it was 'okay'. the problem stems from the wide range of abilities in the class - there are several kids who are completely new to writing, and they get told it's okay to copy down a couple of letters, but those who are more capable don't necessarily get pushed to do more. we told him we wanted to see better work from him, since we knew he could do it.

so yesterday he comes home with a free-form story picture. i think from the picture he was trying to describe going trick-or-treating with his friend, felix. the four lines of writing space were filled up, although the bottom three were jibberish again (he told us they say "blahdeblahblah"). the first line? "I WENT POOP."

a fine author.

Monday, October 30, 2006

artichoke epiphany

i loves artichokes. but i hate the prep work: getting the stem trimmed is no problem, but trimming the tops requires something like a hacksaw, and then there's prying the little central hairs out.

so this evening, i tried a new solution. i trimmed the stems, and then boiled 'em whole. when ready, i took them out, sliced them in half - much easier with more tender cooked leaves - and then it was easier to scoop out the hairy centers. also, they look a bit more elegant, and would make a great presentation with some kind of stuffing.

Friday, October 27, 2006

a book!!

i picked up douglas coupland's jPod, um, because it was on the recent books shelf and the cover looked interesting. i haven't read coupland before, despite being in 'that age group.' i'm liking it quite a bit, in fact waking up in the middle of the night to read more. first thing that's clicked for me in a while.

in other lit fronts, orycon - the annual oregon scifi convention - is coming in a few weeks with featured guest cory doctorow. YIPPEEE I'M HAVIN A GEEK ATTACK!

Thursday, October 26, 2006

more funky dreams

the night before last, i dreamed that i kept getting stuck in places because of my belly. i'd try to get out of an aisle, or around some chairs, or past some obstacle and my belly would just get stuck.

last night, i dreamed that i had taken boo to a home depot for something (although it looked more like a furniture store) and realized the next day that i had left my purse there. i must have had my keys in my pocket so i could drive home. when we looked around the store we found the bag where i had left it, but it was disheveled and i found that my wallet had been stripped of cash, license and cards. i freaked out and tried to get a sales associate to help me but about five of them listened to half a sentence and walked away. i was getting more and more hysterical. i didn't notice that i was frightening boo and he ran off. eventually i went to customer service for help - by that point doubly hysterical because i saw that boo wasn't with me anymore - and they let me use their phone to call the issuing banks for the cards and the DMV. (the customer service desk looked more like a bank teller's counter.) my husband dropped by to ask what was taking so long, and i told him to find nathan. meanwhile, a woman with about 5 kids was next to me and her kids kept climbing on me and interrupting the calls i was trying to make. i gave up when i asked them to please stop interferring and the mom's reply was 'so what?'. i went to sit in a lobby area and make the calls from my cell phone, but the kids followed me and continued to climb on me. i was just about resigned to staying at wit's end. husband came back with boo. i left and went home with them.

i woke up feeling so lousy that in my dream, i had placed more emphasis on the stupid bank cards than on my son.

Sunday, October 22, 2006


about a week ago i bought a yogurt maker. i'm a sucker for kitchen appliances - bread machine, check; ice cream maker, check; rice cooker, check; various crock pots, blenders, choppers - check. (no fancy kitchen aid mixer yet, but that's probably more of a matter of no counter or storage space.)

right now i'm making my third batch of yogurt. what i like about this system is that it makes up little reusable single-serve containers, which was always my downfall about getting plain yogurt in the past. i'd have very good nutritional intentions and buy a large carton of plain yogurt, and it would sit ignored in my fridge until it had to get remandered to the science experiment pile. so i'd get the small containers of flavored stuff, and then feel guilty about all those containers if they weren't recyclable. (in manassas, they recycle plastics #1 and #2, but here in portland they do curbside recycling for "plastic containers that have a neck" and the yogurt tubs have to go elsewhere. portland recycles a lot of materials but not everything goes curbside.)

anyway, i've been enjoying the results, even if the machine is only capable of making plain yogurt. i've tried with 2% milk and whole milk and can't say i've noticed much difference. part of me wants to try with goat milk but that's probably something better left until after the pregnancy. or maybe not, since the milk needs to be heated first. it is an exercise in patience, as it takes nine hours in the machine after setting it up and another 3 hours or so in the fridge - boo's curiousity about the process waned significantly when he realized how long it takes, and how the visuals aren't so exciting. but he has been eating more yogurt, as have i. so i'm guessing this machine will pay for itself in.... let's see, 8 yogurts per homemade batch versus a buck a pop for storebought - two more batches! (not figuring in the cost of milk because we buy 2-3 gallons a week as it is.) not bad at all.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

all the wrong things

today i took a break from helping at boo's school. when i first got home i napped for a couple of hours. then, instead of doing the two things i needed to do today - clearing out the upstairs bedroom for the crib and dresser arriving tomorrow afternoon, and practicing my sarangi before tomorrow morning's lesson - i cleaned out the very junky junk drawer in my kitchen, and started reorganizing stuff in my basement. which means, it's into the evening and i still need to practice and to clear out the bedroom. the bedroom is inhabited by the remains of my jewelry-making stuff, most of which went into a secretary desk in the living room, and my computer/office stuff, which really has no place to go - hence the mental block in getting it cleared out, because i simply don't know what to do with it other than shove it in a closet, which just means i'll have to move it again in the future. i was hoping we'd get our basement finished by now - which would have included at least a desk's worth of space for me - but my husband is pretty much refusing to spend any time/effort/money on it.

on the bright side, i have hired a cleaning service, and they start next week - but now i'm facing that pressure to clean the house top-to-bottom before they get here.


Wednesday, October 18, 2006


in an attempt to find some way of masking the traffic noise that starts around 5 am on our busy street....

er, scratch that.

using road noise as an excuse to try these little hipster electronic toys, i ordered two buddha machines. there's a website that barely explains them at, and they're available through forced exposure. basically, they randomly drone through nine ambient loops. why two? because i'm not quite as cool as brian eno, and he's got 8 or 9 of them.

i've got them set up and next to each other. they're very simple to operate - put in batteries, click on volume wheel, and if you want to switch loops there's a little button on the side. one is nice; two creates a nice complementary soundscape. not the best sound quality in the world - there are headphone ports but i can't imagine wanting to hear it that way. there's also a DC 4.5v input, although no cords were included. they come in a bunch of colors and forced exposure sent me a red and a raspberry one. (they don't offer a color choice.) boo has already claimed the raspberry one for himself and thinks we should get two more.

the fm3 site doesn't show the box these come in, which is kind of a shame because they're delightful. they're powder blue with pink lotuses all over them. they look like large asian candy boxes. i don't know if i'll eventually unscrew one to see if there really is a little buddha figure inside, as the website's diagram shows.

i wonder if the baby would find these restful for naptime. wonder if this means the kid will grow up makin' music for airports.

i should've figured this out

i spent the past 2 mornings helping in the kindergarten classroom, as the usual assistant has been out. yesterday was particularly, erm, eventful as it was me and a substitute for the morning. i wound up sending a kindergartener to the principal's office, but it turns out they're quite familiar with this student's behavior crapola already.

i've started being a little too busy for coffee on tuesday mornings because i don't want to be around all the negativity projected by DM. well, that and being affronted by the 'you have no clue' attitude she hands out. i mentioned that particular conversation to the teacher, because i fear that DM's trying to rile people up during these coffee mornings and i just want no part of it any more. and it turns out.... all those 'we should have this and this in the classroom, and do this activity, yadda yadda' that she throws at the teacher.... the teacher tells her to go ahead and implement it, and DM doesn't follow through on it. and apparently, DM is now picking on the cafeteria staff, despite the fact that her kids don't eat cafeteria food. and frankly, they're doing a fairly difficult job on the budget they're provided and yet they're offering a salad bar and not a bad selection of stuff.

today i'm helping with library time, and after that i'm stopping by the principal's office to express support for the teacher.

Sunday, October 15, 2006

fifteen years later

yesterday, before i left for work, boodad said the one thing i'd never thought he'd say.

"want to go to india next year? like, in december?"

he's never expressed any desire to go, in fact quite the opposite. but, at long last, he's back in correspondence with his father and his dad wants to see the grandkids.

sure, there are logistical funpoints like.... 20+ hours of travel with 2 kids, one of which will be almost a year old, and erm, not potty-trained so how do they deal with that in india anyway, and the closest airport is not serviced by airlines that i'd choose to fly on, but heck. i'm excited enough that i was researching airlines while it was quiet at the desk yesterday.

it's been 15 years since i was in india.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

slacka mom

(title in honor of my r-droppin' new england background)

so there's a group of the kindergarten moms who tend to hang out after drop-off in the mornings, go to the playground with the kiddies after school, and get coffee once a week. i'm happy to be in that group, as i know few people around here. but prospect of this morning's coffee meet was filling me with dread.


one of the moms has made it her mission to express deep dissastifaction with how things are going at the school. and saying that you're actually okay with things, as i am, warrants you a "but i'm an educator and you're not so of course you have no idea." quite literally.

well, i have been paying close attention to what my kid asks about after school and on the weekends, and his inquiries are becoming more sophisticated. he's writing more words independently, whereas before he was confident in writing his name on his own but wanted our guidance on all other words. he's bringing home worksheets that show good processing of some basic math and literacy concepts, and he's repeating rhythm structures and written notes (something that i never did in public school music classes OR in 8 years in a well-regarded chorus) from music class. and this is after one month in a school with a new K-6 population, a new magent curriculum, and 27 K students of abilties ranging from can't-write-a-letter to egads-my-handwriting-doesn't-look-like-a-grownup's. i think things are going well.

dissastisfied mom (DM) thinks that the kids are not getting enough hands-on science. the point of the program at this point, however, is more literacy-based, and the science will be coming in future months. DM asks why they can't do 'simple' things like bring in a pumpkin and ask the kids to guess how much it weighs. oh yeah? ever ask a little kid how old they think you are? or how tall or heavy someone is? this is not a concept that kids at that age have any grasp on, and bringing in something like this without a contextual unit on weights and measurements just makes it a very random guessing game. my feeling is that the kids need to learn to process things like, say, how to read and write numbers before measurements mean much to them.

DM is also unhappy with how the teacher (and the principal) deals with the small group of kids with repeated behavior issues. basically, they are given a warning, then they are removed from the group until they calm down, and if that doesn't work they are sent to the 1-2 grade class next door (the first and second graders share a class because there are so few of them). any work they miss due to misbehavior is done while the rest of the class has 'choosing' - a free period to work on puzzles, building, arts or other activities. DM and another of the moms think that these kids need more warmth and attention. problem was, when DM and other moms stayed in the classroom, the behavior issues got worse because these kids essentially got rewarded for being disruptive. i know that the intentions are good - the behavior issues are going hand-in-hand with socioeconomic and non-involved parent stereotypes and so it's hard not to feel for the lack of warmth these kids are getting on the homefront - but i agree with the teacher that it does these kids no favor to have an inconsistent message about classroom expectations. "but she could use more of a carrot with them," DM argues. having choosing time restored is a carrot. and what about the kids who are not having problems? should they essentially be punished because they're getting only standard treatment for appropriate behavior instead of extra pats on the head for meeting basic expectations? doesn't this teach this handful of kids that just doing what everyone is supposed to do is spectacular for them, and nothing else is really expected of them?

but, you know, my master's is in library science, so i have no fuckin' clue what i'm talking about. right.

Monday, October 09, 2006

oh well

this was about to be a post about how i finally have a day off, but it looks like that's not happening. got called for a shift this afternoon/evening, but husband isn't sure he can pick kid up at 5:30. gargh. so now i'm waiting for him to call me back so i can call work back....

some notes and thoughts accumulated since last post:

do you think we could learn from the amish? last week's incident was as horrible as it gets, and yet they're not angry. there is no talk to retribution, or changing their ways, and 30 members of the community showed up at the gunman's funeral. most of us would be wrapping our schools in barbed wire and metal detectors and boiling with the urge for revenge.

can anyone in portland make decent challah? the loaf i got from new seasons (not baked by them) was just plain foul, and another loaf i tried from a bakery on hawthorne was sweet but too cakeishly heavy.

i'm in a reading slump, at least for books. it's magazine time. recently picked up an issue of brain, child ( and am liking it immensely - smart parenting without the preachiness found in mothering. i've also started a subscription to good magazine ( because it looks so darn well-intentioned, and the subscription price is being donated to a charity of my choice. my only fear is how many magazines i've subscribed to in the past that have folded - rescue, george, mirabella, new eden... i feel like a publisher's kiss of death.

more on magazines: i got the kid subscriptions to your big backyard (published by national wildlife foundation, available at it's the younger version of ranger rick.), spider and click (both published by carus, available at; spider is literary and click is science-based). boo always gets a bit upset when the mail isn't for him, and all three of the magazines i've subscribed to for him are commercial-free and right on his reading level. (readers with younger kids: both carus and the nwf have magazines for even younger kids, too.) it's nice to see that the publishers have started to accomodate kids of various reading levels. i don't remember there being younger versions of ranger rick or cricket when i was a kid. one magazine i do remember was a consumers' union publication called zillions, which aimed to teach grade-schoolers how to use their money wisely and how to avoid being scammed by marketing. so badly needed now, but it hasn't been around for years.

weirdest thing i've been asked lately: at doctors office for sinus problems - "are you sexually active?," to which i pointed to my rather rotund middle and said, "um, yeahhh...".

husband called back, has meeting too late this afternoon to make a kid-pickup possible. he's not convinced that i'm not upset about this. however, i am completely happy to have a day off, as i've had shifts the past three days and was clinging on to the hope of having nothing responsible to accomplish today.

so today's tasks are: book airline tickets home for thanksgiving, call cleaning services for estimates, watch tony takitani before returning it to library, practice sarangi, drink pot of tea (check) and play with cats.

Friday, September 29, 2006

sarangi lesson went well

it's awfully nice to be told that even though i've barely played the sarangi i brought back from india 14 years ago in that expanse of time, i'm not really a beginner.

the teacher uses a slightly different hold on the bow than i'm used to, which will take some retraining on my part. also, time to build up the cuticles again - on a sarangi, the strings are not held down like a violin but pressed against from the side; my new teacher is okay with using the nail, the cuticle or the finger just above the nail but i was trained to use the cuticle. after almost an hour of playing, my left hand was vibrating slightly and my cuticles were definitely sore.

and of course, i need to practice practice.

the teacher also gives suzuki-style lessons on guitar and violin for young children; i'm taking boo with me in a couple of weeks to see if he's interested in picking something up.

jeepers i've been busy

so this has been my week:

sunday - work
monday - clean house, get estimate on replacing basement windows, get call to work on wed & thurs, take kid to playground. catch something sinusy.
tuesday - try to get over sinus thing, continue cleaning house, get another estimate on windows
wednesday - work
thursday - work, see doctor for sinus thing (including getting snipped at by reception for being five minutes late, which was due to printer freezing up computer while trying to print out directions to office plus arguing with kid that yes we really need to go, then waiting an hour for my appointment anyway), do volunteer laundry for kid's classroom
today - sarangi lesson. actually found someone in the area who teaches this! call chosen company to start process on basement windows. might check out home improvement show at convention center, although we're trying to finish basement on the cheap and these shows always roll out the top-shelf stuff.
saturday - work, maybe attend indian dance performance afterwards if the kid is interested.
sunday - off, but feel guilty about not doing anything about high holy days. although i'm exempt from fasting this year anyway, woohoo pregnancy.

i'm flipping tired. next week i have another insane week of two days volunteering with school's library, two weekdays of work plus working both saturday and sunday. i am clinging on to a nonscheduled thursday like it's nobody's business. (don't know when i'll be able to schedule sarangi lesson, though.)

also, the exploding plastic board has been nigh-incomprehensible to me for about a week.

Thursday, September 21, 2006

important parenting milestone

my son has his first whoopee cushion.

in fact, he chose this over (yet another) toy train.

right now he is attempting to prank his grandparents over the phone with it.

target managed to do it

yes, tarjhay has made my shitlist for having a stupid, stupid policy.

last week was their 'baby sale', so i went in to get a carseat/stroller combo and a pack and play. once in the store, i chose a different carseat/stroller combo than i originally intended to buy - it was less bulky, less gender-specfic, and about $40 cheaper than the other set - without being on sale. and yes, i will say i was cheerfully helped by a couple of associates - the combo wouldn't fit in a shopping cart, so they loaded a flat cart for me (combo is also unwieldy when you have a huge belly), wheeled it up to the register, and helped me put it in my car.

i remember seeing something odd about the listing on the combo i purchased, so i brought it up on target's website a couple of days later. and then i see that the combo i've paid $99 for is now $69. i fire up the printer, document the new price, and head over to the store.

that's when i get told that it is not at $69 at the store, it's still $99, so i can't have a price adjustment.

problem in my view is that the website says "$69.99," and right underneath that says "also in stores." both in nice red text. nothing indicating that this is a web-only special. excuse of target store supervisor and person from 1-877 number: "prices may vary by location," in much smaller print a good distance from the price. also, i would only be entitled to a price adjustment if the item was in the weekly printed flyer, which this wasn't. (does this mean if the physical item in the store had a lower price than last week, but wasn't in the circular, no price adjustment??)

target, don't be stupid. don't encourage your customers to use your website for product research and then not match prices on items available online and instores. it sets up your customers to be disappointed, it sets your store associates for confrontations on a pretty dumb policy, and in general it just leaves a bad taste in the mouth.

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

i am in big, big trouble

yesterday when picking the kid up from kindergarten, i was holding the 3-month-old brother of one of his classmates while the baby's mom was carrying something into the school.

"mom! you had the baby while i was in school!"

um, no honey, this is your friend's little brother. the baby is still in my belly. (oh, to have delivery go that fast....)

"i want her to come out right now."

um, no honey, you don't, because she'd be very sick if she did.

"mom, you cannot hold other babies until beatrice comes out."


a little less fussy today, in fact we had a delightful post-school visit to the science museum and then to the grocery store ("what if they don't have alphabet noodles? then we'll have to twist the noodles into letters by hand!"), then home to make alphabet soup and cheesy bread. boo decided it was not just dinner but a surprise party for daddy.

Monday, September 18, 2006

first things first

here's boo on his first day of school:

he doesn't look it, but he's excited and in a good mood. i'm the one holding back tears. he's been enjoying his days in kindergarten, but since he's only been to a few one-week programs this summer he's not quite getting the concept that he'll be going for several months.

the first couple of days he came back tired and wanted to come home right afterwards, have a snack, and stay quiet. toward the end of the week he was ready to go on some adventures after school.

next week 'the mommies' will start having coffee together, so hopefully after-school playdates may be arranged. we're also considering starting him on an allowance system, as he otherwise asks for new toys on a pretty ridiculously frequent basis and we'd like him to get to connect this more with behavior and 'earning'. maybe the other families are doing something similar.

other bits: i've had two days of training at my new job, and my first day behind the desk will be this upcoming sunday. so far it looks good. i've already splurged on two pairs of comfy shoes and a nice (readable!) watch; the sum of which is more than i'll probably earn in a month. so who needs an allowance, really?

i've had a hard time making jewelry i'm happy with lately. i gave myself last week off but will get back to it this week.

Saturday, September 16, 2006

busy busy week

the kid started kindergarten this week. i started a new job. in fact, getting ready to go back to job right now. more later!

Thursday, September 07, 2006

another customer service shout-out

hey kids, are you like me? do you like office supplies and things that make you feel organized?

well, i'm starting an on-call position next week in which i could be working regular or children's reference at two branches, on a sporadic schedule. so it was time to get a datebook.

thanks to outblushoutblush, a nifty site i visit daily for eyecandy, i found rusell and hazel. outblush had listed a little magnetic bird that sits on your desk and keeps paperclips in order. when i visted the site, i saw the r&h specializes in datebooks and planners in put-together kits. franklin covey for the chic, per se.

so i ordered a (surprise) orange minidate book and smartset, and some pockets to fit in the binder. got the confirmation email right away, and noted the bit about 'you will receive another email when your order is in transit. meanwhile, you can check on the status of your order at.... (long url).' small problem with the status check: r&h uses yahoo's shopping platform, and if you're not logged into a yahoo account when you place the order, it can't go back and find the status. and after a week, no in-transit email arrived, so this morning i called r&h to enquire.

friendly person on phone couldn't see a shipping status for my order and conferred with colleague. they suspected their fulfillment company hadn't sent it out because they were printing the 2007/2008 calendar tags and were going to start sending orders with the new tags shortly. oh, i said, i was hoping to get this soon because i'm starting a new job next week. they promptly offered to send my order with the 2006/7 tags, refund the shipping, and get it to me by monday. i'm happy with that.

about fifteen minutes later my phone rings. it's r&h, they have found my order and tracked it, and it should be arriving today - which it did.

nice packaging! sleek and simple like apple's. all products banded together, fronted by a thank you note, and wrapped in a sheet of tissue paper. i just spent a few delightful moments filling out calendar pages until the end of the year.

c'mon, if you read my blog you're likely to be as big a geek as i am about nifty office supplies.

Monday, September 04, 2006

Oh Qwest

I remember on my mac
DSL dead - no getting it back
shadows of a LAN,
the wifi is no-go
trying to reboot
the light stays off so
calling Qwest, expect delay
said they'd send a guy on Labor Day
thought it was a lie like Comcast would give me
I never realized how happy you'd make me
oh Qwest
well you came and you fixed without faking
even on Labor Day oh Qwest,
well you tested and found the bad cabling
and rerouted today, oh Qwest
Comcast would have wasted time
And claimed that all the fault was mine
caught up in bad customer service
frustration in my mind but you did right by us
oh Qwest,
well you came and you fixed without wasting
and you even came early oh Qwest,
well you stopped my DSL from shaking
and I need you today.....

Qwest, after many times of being blown off by Comcast when I've had tech issues, you not only:
1) admitted the problem was with our line, and not our doing
2) had a repair tech available on a holiday
3) had a tech who showed up early
4) had a tech who solved the problem that day, and replaced our phone jack just because it was old - not because it was the problem


You earned a Golden Barry!

Friday, September 01, 2006

little impressive thing, or one more mac-fan post

i just saw something nifty. i was syncing my mac mini and my cell phone so that my mac had the phone's current contacts list, as it's likely that boodad and i will be changing to local numbers on our phones this weekend or sometime soon. syncing via bluetooth is a pretty nice feature. anyway, i noticed that the little sync progress panel showed the correct model of my phone - not just a generic cell phone icon.

no, i don't know if windows does the same thing, as none of our windows boxes has bluetooth. but anyway.

now i'm off to sync my iPod with iCal.... iYiyiyiyi.

Thursday, August 31, 2006

gum update

there is a cartoon of a guy throwing a spear inside the gum package. i kid you not.

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

subtle, eh?

okay, so sometimes i like to chew gum. inner 12-year-old, freudian whatevers, yadda yadda. usually i like orbit's citrusmint, since it's got a nice slim package and tastes kinda like orange tictacs. but i saw this new brand at the grocery today and decided to give it a try.

haven't busted it open yet, but the package... um... well, looks like condoms. two people confirmed this right off the bat without prompting. and while searching for an image of the package, i found this lovely ad that's apparently in print. what is this, manly gum? will the next ad be about safe pleasurable oral gratification?

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

not getting into it

after about 2 months of waiting, christopher moore's 'a dirty job' finally came off my request list and into my library bag. (yes, i am geeky enough to have a bag reserved for library items. it has pictures of dick and jane all over it.)

i'm over 150 pages into it, but i'm not sure i'm *into* it. i like the humor in it, but that's all that is keeping my interest. the plot isn't grabbing me. this is my first moore book, and i've read reviews of this and other titles that made it seem like he'd be a more satisfying read than this. instead, it's reading kinda like a gimmick, like (dodges tomato-projectiles) a lemony snicket for grownups.

i have a 30-page rule, in which i give a book thirty pages to warrant interest in reading more. this is certainly past this point, and i'm over a third through it now. i also know that if i change my mind and decide i do want to finish it, but it goes back to the library in the meanwhile, it's a long time before i'll be able to check it out again. that's about the only compelling reason to continue at this point. no, there is no rule that says if i read more than 30 pages, i must finish the book.

one of the blurbs on the book jacket compares moore to tom robbins. i've been through all the tom robbins books, up until last year's 'wild ducks flying backwards'. maybe i just don't need any moore... erm, more.

Tuesday, August 22, 2006


i just ended the 'reference test' part of a two-stage interview by not noticing that my foot had fallen asleep, getting out of my chair, and falling down in front of the recruitment manager.

wonder if that is an omen.

Sunday, August 20, 2006

magnus mills = genius

i've just finished reading my third book by magnus mills, and i intend to track down his other works. so far i've read 'the scheme for full employment', 'explorers of the new century', and 'three to see the king.'

these are short works, perhaps novellas would be more accurate, but they're all exceedingly good. he has a black sense of humor - i am tempted to say it reminds me of jonathan swift, but it's been ages since i read swift. makes me want to pick up some swift, too, to see how much influence was there.

Thursday, August 17, 2006

i want you to want me

yesterday i got called for interviews with two (count 'em, two) library systems.

Monday, August 14, 2006

one of *those* parents

my friend marty, a schoolteacher in dallas, recently accused me of being one of *those* parents. and well, time to face facts: i probably am.

i applied to switch boo to a new magnet school today. this school is changing from a middle school to K-8, with focuses (focii?) on arts and science & technology. i spoke with the vice principal today, toured the space, asked about the curriculum and library, and asked about the plans for the program in following years. there are some very interesting interdisciplinary and interage programs, plus a partnership with Portland State University for science instruction.

frankly, there are two compelling reasons to make the switch: the school that he's enrolled in as his 'neighborhood school' is pretty far from home - more than twice the distance from this school. it's also (albeit improving) "strong" school with an emphasis on reading. that sounds nice, but the snarky side of me suspects that schools focus on reading when the parents of their students aren't doing it at home. not a problem for a librarian's kid, eh?

the veep also told me about afterschool enrichment programs, such as music, dance, art and additonal science sessions. this is a plus, as i had already been researching music and language classes for him. (he wants to learn spanish. no, hindi. no, spanish, no, hindi.)

soooo.... yep, marty, i'm one of *them*. i might even put the kid in a one-week afternoon soccer camp next week, making me a *soccer mom*. it's a program with british coaches, though, so do i technically qualify as a footie mum?

and in the not-quite-breaking-news department: second ultrasound today confirms it's a girl. wheeee! however, boodad and i finally figured out what the boy name would have been. and no, there will be no #3 to try it out.

the new sesame street muppet blows.

Abby Cadabby is the new Sesame Street muppet.

She's been on for eight minutes and I want to strangle her, and whoever designed her. For starters: she has flat eyes, rendering her expressionless. She's also got a more annoying voice than Elmo, if that's possible.

I really love Sesame Street and the Muppet Workshop, but this is ridiculous. It's Disney-esque. I'm several yards away from my bedroom, where the TV is on, and all I can hear is *twinkle!* *twinkle!* sound effects.

Supposedly this is Sesame's way of providing a strong female role?

At least Nathan's Sesame-watching days will be coming to an end in a few weeks.

Also, I feel sorry for any kid named Abby, because you know this is what they'll be called from here on out.

Sunday, August 13, 2006

library thang!

it's not a job, it's a lifestyle.

the doohickey on the left is from pretty nifty. found it by glancing at fellow mad-skillz librarian jblend's blog.

Friday, August 11, 2006

apparently, it's furniture day

today the order from dania arrived.

this was kind of a sticky wicket, as i had ordered it when boo and i had gone in to check out the store last week. there were dining chairs that i really liked and found comfortable, and a nifty boo-bed that had drawers and cabinet space underneath.

slight mistake - forgot to tell boodad about it. so he pipes up with, "sure, let's go back to the store this weekend and check out the dining chairs and bed before we order it." which would have been okay, since the furniture wasn't arriving until the following friday, and if he hated it i could cancel the order before anything came to the house. but of course, us being us, we didn't get around to it last weekend. hmmm.

went to knitting thursday night, intending to 'fess up afterwards. meanwhile, boodad had been looking through the bank records and noticed a rather large purchase at dania. oops. 'fessing time was upon me.

this morning the chairs and bed arrive. i didn't expect the chairs to require assembly. but i'm more nonplussed that the bed's assembly, which i was anticipating, wasn't part of the delivery. but heck, i have mastered many an allen wrench courtesy the big swedish wonderland; i can surely handle this.

i put together two chairs, leaving two in the box in case boodad wanted to return them. then set upstairs to tackle the bed.

unpacked everything. put all the screws, nuts, doohickeys and whatamathings in order. laid out the pieces according to diagram. started malleting, screwdriving and wrenching my darndest, paying extra attention to the directions as i'm slightly baby-brained at the moment and prone to missing details. read twice, screw once, to slightly amend this old house's proverb.

i get the core of the underbed together, and then i have to flip it to put the big side panels on. and that's when i hear a *crack*. there is a piece running the length of the bed, but only about 2" high, and made out of MDF that is supposed to be a crucial supporting piece. yes, soooo crucial that the danish wonderlords only pegged it to the core section - it doesn't get screwed into place until the side panels go on. flipping the core - and yes, i did try to see if things could be aligned without flipping first, and no they couldn't - caused the MDF to split at all five pegged points.

i tried glueing the points back, and then realized there was still no way to get all the connecting points on the side panels and the core to fit together correctly. at this point i think my kid may have picked up some bad vocab from me.

so tomorrow, boodad will indeed get to see the inside of dania, as we intend to return this hulk of MDF. as he put it, a couple of jumps from nathan and it would all be over.

later in the evening, there is a knock on my front door. it is the woman who lives two doors down. that house, and the one next to us, have quieted recently after a period of... ummm... seemingly large and loud amounts of commercial traffic, presumably pharmaceutical. she tells me that she is moving out of portland this weekend, selling her house, and needs to get rid of furniture, would we be interested? there are lots of 'i made mistakes but now these people are gone and i want to move on with my life' kinds of comments. ai yi. anyway, i go over, mainly to be polite, and also figuring that i would be saying no. however, she has a dresser set that isn't bad at all - and happens to be the kind of thing i've been looking for to replace our not-enough-storage pieces of bedroom furniture. (unfortunately for boo, this is my bedroom, not his.) so i ask boodad, he's okay with it, we settle on a price and the pieces are brought over.

to be honest, the only thing i don't like are the pulls, and one is missing. so i'm looking online at some nice 4" cup-shaped pulls, and i'm realizing that buying them - at least from restoration hardware (yeah, yeah, i will wind up at lowe's like a normal person, don't worry) - may cost as much as the whole set costs us. oops, again, but i'm in no rush to do this right now anyway.

boo has crashed on one of the futons downstairs. poor little guy. it was hard for him to see mommy and daddy getting new stuff in their bedroom while the bed he really wanted is in a not-quite-together heap in the middle of his room.

Monday, August 07, 2006


since i have a little more spare time in my days, i've taken to doing the puzzles in the comics pages of the oregonian.

sudoku? bring it on.
word search? heck yeah.
crossword puzzle? if i feel like it, sure.
jumble? .....

the jumble is that puzzle with four scrambled words, a cartoon, and a punch line for the cartoon that is formed from selected letters of the descrambled words. and i can't do it for the life of me.


the scrambled words are always presented as phonetic possibilities. and since i love picking up new languages, my brain just kinda accepts the scrambles as new words. burmia? verip? wish i knew what they meant in their native languages.


we're trying to see if we can switch boo's elementary school, as there are several others nearby with better scores. i've been advised that although we're past the school choice deadline, we may still be able to do this. so i called the schools we're interested in, to find out if there was available kindergarten space. the portland school district has an interesting feature on their schools' phones. i called 4 elementary schools today, and none of the lines were answered. however, after a few rings i got a message saying that i could either stay on the line, or leave a message - for 95 cents.

it irked me that i should have to pay to have a public institution call me back. however, having worked in a public place myself, i'm aware of the fact that some people call constantly about inappropriate things. perhaps the fee is to keep the schools' voicemail boxes from overflowing. so, although it just seemed wrong, i left messages at all four schools. four bucks is a tiny investment in my kid's education, i told myself.

no calls back.

sorry, but if you're going to have the 'nads to ask callers to pay for the opportunity to leave a message, and the only thing you allow on these messages are names and phone numbers, then call back, or refund the fee.

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

wait til he figures out this is a desirable effect

"mom, i have to get new underwear. i'm getting bigger all the time and this underwear is too tight. see? it makes my private parts look like a mountain."

Sunday, July 30, 2006

buzzz buzzz

okay, the baby-prep bug hit. i wandered into a section of town yesterday to pick up futon covers, and came across a children's furniture store. saw a crib i really like, although i can't quite decide on a finish - i like white, but this will turn into a full size bed later, and maybe the kid won't want white when she's a tween/teen? but, they had a crib bumper set with bumble bees on it, so i had to get it. and a little beehive toy set....

i'm trying to resist the urge to cover the nursery in pink girly froof. which is weird, i mean, i don't like pink girly froof for me, and i would be surprised if my kid would like it either. and let's face it, babies probably don't worry too much about home decor.

i did a lot of gardening today, getting 10 plants into the ground and removing weeds, a dead clematis, and several deadly nightshade (!!!) plants from around the yard. i plucked some deadly nightshade from my neighbor's front yard, too, as i don't want their young kids getting sick from them. it turns out that while the sellers did a nice-looking landscaping in our yard, they did nothing to improve the soil, so i had to prep the soil for every plant with compost and fertilizer. what's really bad is that i'm already plotting (har har, pun not intended) what plants to get next.... the landscaping that was done included very little color, and i'm pretty much a color addict. i'm having to tone down my temptation to throw lavender all over the garden because i really need some reds, yellows and oranges around the place as well.

let's see... my parents visited last week. we saw a good number of things, although we were slowed by another 100 degree heat spike. on the third day of the heat i couldn't stay out of bed. i'd get out for about five minutes, and then i'd be back down. my mother also had more mobility trouble than she's had in a while, so while we got her to the rose garden, she didn't want to walk around it. after they left i thought of a million things that i wish we had seen, but that's the way, isn't it. plus, they'll be back, and we'll be here.

Monday, July 24, 2006

big. big and tired.

i think i'm almost halfway through the pregnancy? it's funny how with the first, you know exactly how many weeks and days you are, and for the second you're thinking, hmmmm, 17 or 18 weeks, maybe, whatever let's call it 4 months.

in any event, i'm feeling big, and the recent heat spike isn't doing much for my energy level. i'm having a hard time doing more than lying in bed. i need to pick up some maternity tshirts, which is annoying in a way because i know i'm not going to use 'em again after the next 5 months. hooray for cheapo foreign-made clothes, i guess.

haven't been into getting the nursery stuff yet. probably because we need to put the basement in order so i can move my office stuff down there, clearing out the back upstairs bedroom for the baby. actually the only thing i've seen while out that i wanted to snap up immediately for the nursery were paintings that were only display at a yarn shop. but they're very pink, and although i'm about 90% sure i'm having a girl i kinda think i should wait until ultrasound #2 happens before plunking down a couple of hundred on paintings.

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

algie's simply good, simply awfully good, at al-l-l-lgebra, at al-l-l-lgebra

sometimes songs get stuck in my head.

today's mix has been malcolm mclaren & the bootzilla orchestra's 'something's jumping in your shirt', seguing into 'algernon's simply awfully good at algebra'. both from the 1989 album 'waltz darling', which mixed house and, yes, full orchestra waltz.

and since i was in the basement, the b52s' 'legal tender' was running through my head as well. stocked it full of jelly jars, and heavy! equipment! we're in the basement.... learnin' to print....

so in playing 'guess what's stuck in my head' with a friend, i gave him the clue "cult adult pop". fits, eh?

Monday, July 17, 2006


congratulations to my friend tony, who has just been hitched!

(actually, tony and eric have been married longer than boodad and i have. and finn & charlie are NOT tony & eric.)

bead show = danger

yesterday i went to a bead & gem show at the oregon convention center. four hundred dollars later, i walked out with oodles of stuff. and yes, most at better prices than i could find elsewhere or more interesting that i can usually find. but now i'd better get cracking on making more pieces to justify this....

Friday, July 14, 2006


husband's car is finally here. it's saabalicious. (really, GM, drop the 'born from jets' marketing and hire me. i've already given you 'saab luust' and 'saabalicious'.)

i measured my belly yesterday, and it's already 7" bigger than prepregnancy. woah.

Monday, July 10, 2006

another dream, another post

last night's dream was that after driving my husband to work (yep, we still don't have the saab, maybe tonight??), i somehow goofed off and didn't come home until 8:30 pm. this freaked out my husband, of course, but also my kid and my cousin who is visiting from connecticut and who has an interview and tour at reed college this afternoon. oops.

surfaced a little, went back to sleep, and then dreamed that husband and i went for lunch in a pub. he wanted a beer (it was brewed by!) but couldn't get the bartender's attention. i went up to the bartender, asked for the beer, and he told me they were out of it but would be getting more in a few hours if we wanted to wait. i said no, and could i try the copper ale instead. the bartender thought the best way to deliver a sample was to dribble it from the tap onto his finger and have me suck his finger.... eeugh.

insomnia might be better.

Sunday, July 09, 2006

like i needed a dream to tell me this

last night i had a dream in which i went to a friend's house. she was a journalist and had lost her mother in 9/11. (this is an imaginary person.) for some reason she had a copy of ann coulter's book 'godless' was getting all in a twist about it. i picked it up, flipped through it, and found the following passage:

'my editors encourage me to conflate fiction and fact, and to do so at my own discretion to drive home truths...'

there were little bits surrounding it that basically said, she's a deliberate liar.

now, i'm not going to touch that woman's book with the proverbial 10-foot barge pole, so this is not an actual quote.

like i needed a dream to tell me this, anyway.

Saturday, July 08, 2006

you know this makes me happy

new ryuichi sakamoto album!

bricolages is actually a remix album, with tracks taken from last year's wonderful 'chasm' album and remixed by cornelius, alva noto, fennesz, taylor deupree, steve jansen and others. i was kinda surprised by this, as there's no mention of the project on his website ( and i only learned of it through a music store ad in the local weekly alt paper.

it's interesting to hear the interpretations, even if in some parts they seem to go completely against the music/lyric cooperation of meaning that was present in the originals.

Sunday, July 02, 2006

bumper sticker idea

inspired by being pissed off at the "marriage = 1 (man symbol) + 1 (woman symbol) stickers, which thankfully i pretty much only encounter in the suburbs here in portland.

how about:

marriage = 1 (heart) + 1 (heart)

um..... anybody reading this any good at graphics?

Saturday, July 01, 2006

boo song

"i don't like it,
i don't like it,
it's for grownups,
it's not for kids."

song inspired by PBS changing from kids' to adult programming.
who said tv can't inspire creativity?


on the phone with my mother this afternoon, she said she had something to read to me from the local paper.

it was the obituary for someone i went to school with. in fact, i went on my first-ever date with him. (not a big chapter in my romantic life, but you tend to remember that first date.) i lost track of keith after high school; i knew he and his brother headed out to san francisco for a while. i knew he had returned to the hometown area when a bizarre story cropped up in the paper - his wallet had been stolen; he hadn't reported it because it was apparently during a drug purchase. the thief committed a major burglary and since he had been using keith's identity, the real keith wound up in jail. he later returned home. i tried looking him up a few times on trips home but never found him.

the obit mentioned a life partner/caregiver. one assumes AIDS in this case. i'm glad he wasn't alone. i feel sorry for his partner. the obit was written with a lot of tenderness and love, and mentions lots of family support. i'm glad the local catholic church isn't shutting their doors to his family for the funeral service.

after getting this news, we went out to run errands this evening and wound up in a food court. i watched a pair of men there; both probably the same age, one was noticeably thin and frail and in a wheelchair, the other gently assisting. they were watching the ice skaters in the center court. it was while seeing them that i began to feel the small good things in keith's situation: he wasn't alone, he had support, he was loved. things diseases can't steal.

Friday, June 30, 2006

downtime between books

no surprise, i'm a reader. and now that i'm not working, i'm reading more.

so last night i finished up nathan singer's 'chasing the wolf', a time-travel based SF that looked interesting enough to take off the new books shelf at the library. it was a short read, under 200 pages, and it was engaging. reminds me a bit of cory doctorow's style.

prior to that, i read magnus mill's 'explorers of the new century', which was also fairly short. i want to do some research and find literary criticism of this, because in his sly and sarcastic way i think mills is bring up a huuuuge issue but oh so quietly. i had read mill's 'the scheme for full employment' a couple of years ago and was delighted to see that the local library system has kept up with his work - the system i worked for did not. he writes socioeconomic satire, a modern jonathan swift.

i have a novel by samrat upadhyay checked out, which i requested after reading his new short story collection 'the royal ghosts'. i'm a sucker for anything (well-written) set in southeast asia, and upadhyay sets his work in nepal. the short stories all dealt in tangental or direct ways to the recent antimonarchist violence in nepal.

so this is my question - i finished 'chasing the wolf' last night, and since it's set in modern NYC/1930s mississippi/1960s california, i'm not quite ready to start the upadhyay novel yet. i need a couple of evenings of downtime. usually i do suduko puzzles for a while before bed, or (since my due date has been moved up almost 2 weeks) i should hop-to on my knitting project, a maternity cardigan. i have an issue of tikkun magazine to get through as well, although it's admittedly dry reading (i'm going to try again on tikkun founder michael lerner's 'the left hand of god', though....) anyone else need downtime between books?

Thursday, June 29, 2006

saab luust

well, we tried living the one-car family lifestyle. but basil's workplace changed to a location with no nearby transit, and when he brought his bike out to be stored at the closest train station, it was gone within 12 hours....

so we're getting a second car. it's a 1999 saab 9^5 sedan, and we're getting it from this swedish guy who only works on saabs and volvos. basil is pretty much indulging me, because he wanted to look at cheap old japanese/korean numbers (kia, suzuki) and i pointed out that mats offers a warranty on his cars and (pout pout) i've always kinda wanted a saab, but they are ridiculously priced new compared to the retained value.

this is part of the portland experience: getting used to how laid back things are here. mats is lending us an older saab until ours is ready; there is a wiring job he has to do on ours first. i drove the loaner saab home tuesday and the driver's side view mirror fell off onto the highway. i called him sheepishly on wednesday, and he said "ya no problem, bring it in and i'll put another mirror on it." oh and i kid you not, he was wearing a t-shirt from the ABBA musical 'mamma mia' when i went in that afternoon.

nathy is a little disappointed that we're not getting one of the 9^3 convertibles, but they're two-doors which is a little too impractical with kids.... also, it kinda rains a bit here, so how much do we get to put the top down? the clencher for us, though, is that the tops were cloth, and we could just see them getting knifed. "too much time in DC," said a local friend when we related that concern.

the other thing that hit me is that my dad immediately started listing new cars we should look at. yes, we're about to get some money from selling our house in virginia, but we don't want to spend so much on a car. and we don't want a car payment. it made me realize, though, that i've been hardwired to get new cars when used would have been better for me/us economically. so i had to move across the country to break that?

Friday, June 16, 2006

guilty tv pleasures

now, we're talking guilt. in a fit of 'we shall only worship at the shrine of PBS, and it comes in just fine with rabbit ears', we are forgoing cable or other services. (well, there is also the sworn-enemies-of-comcast thing, and a reluctance to put a dish on a 1912 bungalow.)

and i should explain that pregnancy leaves me tired every so often. brain-numbingly tired. and you know if brain numbing is to happen, the appropriate channel is the just-about-to-be-CW'd WB network.

so i'm watching their friday night lineup last week. no wait, that's a lie. i'm flipping the very few channels that we get. PBS before NOW is on is kinda of a wash - yeah, i know, Fareed.... is smart but dull or at least certainly not mindless passive watching. and i flip some more, and see a sitcom that has sara gilbert on it. yes, sara gilbert, smart-slacker darlene from roseanne, sparkling appearance in high fidelity, and one of those actors you just like to see pop up from time to time. and i see in the supporting cast this nebbishy older guy. looks so familiar, yet i'm racking my mushy brains to place his name. is it an actor i used to see at trinity rep in providence? there is something about him that makes me think i used to see him regularly long, long ago....

and tonight i realize who this guy is...


now i am so happy, i do the dance of joy!

and the wikipedia entry on mark linn-baker also calls him 'nebbishy'.

btw, my other guilty tv pleasure will transfer from UPN to the CW this fall. i thought i was alone on this, but slate magazine recently revealed a love for 'girlfriends' as well....

Monday, June 12, 2006

google news thinks i care about...

brad & angelina leaving africa
nba finals

news stories on these two came up as 'recommended for me' when i looked at google news this morning. weird, since i haven't used google or google news to look up info on either topic. also, dead wrong as to interests. so maybe they were recommended to me because i'm too disinterested in brangelina and basketball?

Saturday, June 10, 2006

fear o' committment

the topic of temple shopping came up over breakfast this morning.

husband isn't into it, and i'm... still not ready. even though there are some good options to explore here, including a reform congregation that is actually liberal, a reconstructionist congregation, and a renewal group.

is it that quitting ner shalom showed me that i can be jewish alone?

we're eng-er-land!

yeah, i know, two youtube posts in a week. i haven't heard the embrace england world cup song yet, but will any world cup song ever be as brill as this?

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Monday, June 05, 2006

condocerts, i hope you vanity search

because you suck. hard.

you're sending my documents to my old home address, instead of the real estate agent's as i had requested. this is after having to place my order a second time.

Sunday, June 04, 2006

"there is you, on your computer, sexy devil"

david brancaccio just said this. wheeee pbs podcasts.

new router seems to have solved mac's problem. fingers crossed.

if this holds up, i think i'm gonna go for the mac bluetooth keyboard and mouse - nice and sleek, and would return valuable desk space.

did a prenatal yoga class today. it was very nice, but mine was the only belly not bulging (except the instructors).

Friday, June 02, 2006

who cares what they sound like

bands to love for their names:

i love you but i've chosen darkness
someone still loves you boris yeltsin

bands with dumb names that i like:

casiotone for the painfully alone
suburban kids with biblical names

but they're not tribute acts:

pretty girls make graves
stars of track and field

could not get them to change their name:

say hi to (boo)mom

btw, previous post.... back in unconnected mac hell. have asked for some help in the macaddict forum and from some mac expert friends. may be trying a new router this weekend. oh, and prenatal appt went fine, and boo was a little disappointed when he realized that his brother or sister wasn't coming just then. (i had to edit in the last sentence; where are my priorities?)

Wednesday, May 31, 2006

ahhhhh (ps. firmware sounds dirrrty)

thanks to the jeeeenyus bar at apple, it has been declared that there ain't nuttin' wrong with my mac's airport. and it seems updating the firmware on the router has solved the connectivity issues. huzzah.

yesterday was a beautiful day out, so after getting the mac checked out, boo and i headed to the zoo. at this time of year, the zoo train runs across washington park to the rose garden. we got out, strolled around the garden for a while (it still kinda blows my mind how differently varieties of roses can smell) and then to a large playground before taking the train back to the zoo. i'm always impressed with how willing boo is to stay in a formal garden setting and just enjoy the plants.

today was not as nice out, although it didn't rain until about 5. we were picked up and brought to a playdate at new acquaintance dorota's house. nathan and felix have a funny dynamic - they pretty much get into a series of little contentions and then one of them gives up. only ugly scene was nathan when leaving - when he really hates to go (and this was definitely the case here), he pulls a full mad pout of 'i'm never going to see you again! i don't like you!' which unfortunately felix took at face value. i had to plead with nathan to get him to apologize to felix, who was by this point in tears. and then felix immediately laughs it off. go figure.

tomorrow is my first prenatal appointment. for some reason i have some sense of dread about this.

Thursday, May 25, 2006

noooo don't make me grow up

tonight i kinda wanted to go see architecture in helsinki play, but there are two opening bands, and i know i'm gonna be ready to sleep by 10. heck, i might be ready now. so, i'll probably go to the night knitting session at a nearby yarn shop.

hope i purl before i get old.

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

mom, your hair's turning gray.

lunchtime conversation with boo.

this doesn't actually happen to be true, mind you. yet.

holy craigslist, batman!

i posted our myriad of boxes and bubble wrap on craigslist. nine responses in 12 hours.

Monday, May 22, 2006

aaaahh finally

qwest connected our dsl today. we had comcast and qwest in a race to see which service we'd qet quicker; comcast had an installation appointment on friday that, in their usual style, they blew off.

we bought rabbit ears for the tv and found that we get pbs, nbc and some other channels in just fine. i'm in no rush to get a dish, and comcast has had its final chance with us.

so a list of things awesome about portland so far:

friendly neighbors
organics to you (a box of local organic produce brought to your house, yippee)
being able to use angie's list to find services
the bar named 'porky's' on the next block is becoming a gay bar
bus stops right on the corner
there's a yarn pretty close to here, need to check it out

Monday, May 08, 2006

why do they sell....

prenatal vitamins in 100-count bottles?

hotel koan

oh grasshopper:

there is free wifi, or high-speed wifi.
there is no free high-speed wifi.

Sunday, May 07, 2006

so let's see how fast this gets around

file under: it figures

we got rid of a lot of stuff in preparation for the move. i even parted with some books, which i very rarely do. lots of runs to the thrift store with clothes, toys, little home decorations. we held a yard sale and got rid of the lava lamp and old walkmen. sold boo's bunkbed through an ad in the paper, since the ceiling in his new room won't take a tall bed. boodad's coworker took the pack n' play and a bunch of other kiddie stuff. i sent the baby swing out to benrad, who is expecting with his fiance in november. (yippee!)

meanwhile, i had been feeling lightheaded over the past couple of weeks, which i attributed to very high pollen counts but was thrilled that i wasn't getting sinus infections. hooray for septoplasty! and tired, but then i was packing and cleaning and organizing and packing and cleaning and organizing and packing.... etc. but thursday, my calves started to hurt. not my back, not my shoulders, just my calves. kinda odd. friday, they still kinda hurt. so i got suspicious. when i was pregnant with boo, i would wake up in the middle of the night with horrendous charlie horses. i remember them being so strong that i'd wake up yelling and poor boodad would try to massage them away. so.... friday i did the pee on a stick test. twice.


a little bit of a suprise, but i'm deleriously happy.

Saturday, April 29, 2006


i keep things. handwritten notes, cards from friends and relatives, ticket stubs, flight itineraries.

for some reason i'm going through a box of this sort of ephemera, just to see if i can glean the pile down a little. so far:

i'm keeping all the cards and letters from my granny, who really can't write anymore.
wedding invitations for friends
birth announcements
'goodbye and good luck' and group-signed birthday cards from workplaces
ticket stubs to see they might be giants, several times
ticket stub to cocteau twins, 1990
cards for my bat mitzvah (at age 26)
all 11 valentines from the year my husband made it into a treasure hunt
mother's day cards from the cat
mother's day cards from 'your most bonky boo' in husband's handwriting

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

darned if i know how it works

but this....

especially in the spray form, has saved me from being a raving loon during the move process.


i'm openminded but i really have no idea how to attribute calmness to a blend of 38 floral essences sprayed in the mouth. i suspect it's more of a trained reaction (spray spray ahhhhh) than the homeopathic med it claims to be. but, i'm going to run to the health food store and get me another bottle.

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

down to one car

sold husband's car today. so happy to be moving to a place where we will only need one.

i visited my former coworkers today. i, um, don't miss working. i particularly don't miss having to accomodate people. it becomes too much of a habit and sometimes, frankly, some requests deserve a 'fuck off'. like, say... the solicitation from the RNC that came in the mail today. fuck off.

Thursday, April 20, 2006

i said upside down you're turning me, i can't do math evidently

yesterday i had another moving company rep in to give an estimate. unlike the previous two, this guy did the math by hand, not with a laptop. since we are having a car transported to oregon, i asked if his company handled that and he said they subcontract that, and he happened to know the price because he had to inquire for another customer moving to oregon the previous day. so i'm watching him write down the figures, and he comes up with the total, and i'm trying to add the car transport fee to this. i'm reading the numbers upside down. for some reason, i can read upside down with no problem, and can write that way as well. but i couldn't add the number on the page to the number in my head. it was just too many processes, i guess.

boo had his annual checkup appointment today and he wrote his name upside down. he had been watching me write on packing boxes. i'm pretty amazed by this - he got his Ns inverted, but heck, a lot of grownups would have trouble with that too. makes me wonder how he's going to use his spatial reasoning skills in the future.

btw, w's favorite moving company sent a letter telling my husband how nice it was to meet him the other day. strike two, since they met me and only me. there was another company we got an estimate from, but details gleaned from have ixnayed that company.

in two weeks our stuff will be in a van, holy huey.

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

wow. (my kid strikes again.)

"i don't know what i want to eat for dinner. i have eater's block."

wow. my kid has coined a phrase for a very familiar feeling.

Monday, April 17, 2006

jesus, jesus will tear us aparrrrt againnnn

i love you, bbc.

dear moving company

want to earn my business?

then don't feature this on your brochures and website.

Sunday, April 16, 2006

and since i posted something literary, now this

this morning, my cat TJ jumped on the bed. i would like to think it was affection; it was probably just nagging me for breakfast. boo was already in the bed for his morning cuddle. i tried to lift TJ up from my feet to the top half of the bed. he didn't like this, and clawed me. on the nipple. and drew blood.


jane austen, i submit to thee....

packing the house has meant that most of my books have been squirreled into boxes, and all materials returned to the library for fear of packing them in a last-minute frenzy. thus, my choices of reading materials have been online or the few magazines to which i subscribe.

i finally realized it's causing me to spend a lot more time in front of the computer, searching for something to read. and since the board i've been on for eons is grinding to a slow death, euugh. (there will be another post about what i've been reading online, at some other time.)

one of the few books not yet in a box is jane austen's pride and prejudice. a nice hardback edition, no doubt the well-intentioned gift of an aunt while i was a teenager. i remember trying it and putting it down rather quickly. desperation makes you do things you usually wouldn't, though, so i picked it up this afternoon and spent a lovely little break from packing by reading through two chapters. maybe it's due to seeing several adaptations, maybe it's (gasp) some previously hidden font of maturity, maybe it's getting prepped for this by unexpectedly enjoying thomas hardy's tess of the d'urbervilles last year.

i wonder if a year from now i'll be one of those librarians hooked on austen.

Saturday, April 15, 2006

sorry, kid post again

"mommy, why do andy and his mom speak in spanish?"

"no, honey, they speak in korean. master lee and mrs. lee grew up in a country called korea. it's far away, as far away as daddy's family. they're teaching andy to speak korean too."

"i want to speak korean, teach me korean."

"i don't know korean, i'm sorry but i can't teach it to you. why don't you ask master lee to teach you how to say 'hello' and 'goodbye' in korean? those would be good words to learn."

"nooooo. i want you to teach me."

sigh. poor kid, spanish, hindi, malayalam and hebrew aren't enough?

Thursday, April 13, 2006

so hard to be creative

"mommy, you have to help me. i want to write a note to miss donna but i have writers block." - boo

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

passing over

this is the second year in a row in which i've done absolutely nada about passover.

i used to keep kosher for the whole week. i really loved it. i loved the seder, loved having guests for the seder, etc. but since quitting the congregation last year, i haven't felt like observing much of the holidays. sometimes on a friday i'll get a challah and light candles. my son really enjoys that, and like all little kids he loves hannukah.

there is a reconstructionist congregation in arlington, which is about 25 miles away. it is not possible to get there peacefully on a friday night. i have gone to a saturday shabbat service with kids' accomodation once, and would probably think about becoming more active there if we were staying in the area. there are a number of people there who have been to elat chayyim. this makes it feel somewhat safe, as their practice of judaism is about what i've come to as well.

but i am still so wary after ner shalom. i felt really, really burned. part of me wants to explore the congregations in portland - and there are a number of liberal ones, including a renewal group, reconstructionist, and i met someone in the reform one who said they were quite liberal too. mostly, i want my kid to have some sense of jewish identity, although i will also say that's something i felt that he would need as a defense mechanism when living here.

i did notice that the neighborhood (portland) grocery store has a kosher section, but did not have passover matzot. i asked a store employee if they were on display somewhere else, and he said no, and i explained that most of the types of matzot they had weren't useable for passover. he said it was something handled corporately and not by individual stores. i had flashbacks of south carolina, when congregation members would send out matzot-sighting emails. however, portland has several congregations of every stripe, two jewish day schools, and frankly we felt very accepted as a family - and since we're racially mixed, that can be a very strong reaction.

while stuck in the minneapolis airport overnight on the way home, basil mentioned that he had never felt so uncomfortable in the vibes people were giving us. he felt it was worse that south carolina, although i suspect that was spurred from being protective of boo as well. i just was very smoochy on him, both because we were both stressed and because it was fun to tweak the sensibilities of white midwestern assholes cluching 'i'm a supersuper christian' books while passing judgement on us. for comparison, total strangers would approach us in portland to tell us that our family is beautiful. the assumption i usually get here is that i'm a single parent, my kid is hispanic, and that i might have gotten knocked up but no way would i have married one of _those_ people. i've watched people talk to me in english and then turn and talk to my kid in spanish, and even people at my former congregation thought i wasn't married.

so maybe.... i'm getting out of the egypt/virginian desert, just a few weeks late.

i should be packing

the amount i still have to do is stunning me into a stupor.

Saturday, April 08, 2006


pics uploaded for portland house:

Friday, March 31, 2006

because i know you care

we're in portland, househunting.

my last day of work was wednesday. it was a long week of goodbyes, and it hasn't really sunk in that i'm not working at the library anymore.

we're here for a week. it is such a relief to not have housework to do. we might catch up on sleep. once you start getting your house ready for market, the tiny items fling themselves onto the to-do list until it's unbearable. and you don't do things that you need to do, like... get your kid's hair cut, get your car inspected.

had a hottt dream last night involving husband and chocolate sauce. yeaaaaah.

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

this is how tired i am

i turned down the wrong road on the way to work today. i have worked at the same location for 2 1/2 years.

i bought a large size stouffers mac and cheese for dinner. i thought i was buying weight watchers.

i do not even care that my kitchen sink is still disconnected.

Monday, March 20, 2006

fun with patrons

tell 'em the encyclopedia of censorship is full of marked-out pages.

Sunday, March 19, 2006

yeah, i cried at work today.

a patron i had helped with her 11th grade research paper (major requirement for VA schools) came in with a thank you note for me. she did her project on assistance animals, and i got her in touch with a friend/patron who is blind and has a guide dog.

she wrote on her note that she's thinking of being a librarian.

she only stopped in to give me the card. she exited the building, i opened the card, and i ran out the door after her so i could hug her.

Thursday, March 16, 2006

vintage rawk

i'm wearing a 'new order concert north american tour 1989' tshirt today. the design always struck me as kind of obnoxious - the word 'concert' is in dayglo orange, pink and green on a black background. rest of the wording is much smaller and in white.

walking my kid to the sitter's, i realized that i saw that concert when i was 17. i'm now 34. ("and it still fits you!" said the sitter.)

there were a bunch of great shows that summer - mostly in 3-band lineups. i remember seeing sugarcubes/PiL/new order, and another one that summer was mojo nixon/pogues/violent femmes. the following summer i saw depeche mode in the same big outdoor venue. (ps. john, if you're reading, who opened?)

i still like to get out to shows, but i like smaller venues. yep, 34-yr-old hipster.