Monday, December 31, 2007

happy new year

with the holidays, i haven't had much time to sit and make notes on things that happen. i have been busy making things happen and being involved in things that other people made happen.

there is a sort of conflict that exists between living your life and documenting your life.

there are adorable pictures and quirky anecdotes to be shared at some point, if i remember them. but for now i hope that everyone had a wonderful Christmas and that you were (i hope you're not reading this on new year's eve!) somewhere comfortable, with familiar people, to enjoy the entry of a brand new year.

i wish you all peace, love, happiness, rich chocolate, crisp snow, smooth alcohol, no hangovers, (and a sabres victory) for 2008.

let's take it from the top and do it again, but, uh, better.

Monday, December 17, 2007

he's only human

so my dad took me to the wings game for my birthday. that's always cool, even though i have watched about 30 minutes of hockey all season so far. i can't believe it after being so engrossed last season.

going to a live game is a treat, and then i remembered that they were playing the capitals. that means seeing alex the great! live! and in person!

you know what? i wasn't blown away. he's a good player, but it's not like he skated rings around people. i saw him make several simple mistakes, including some that wasted precious power play time for his team.

sure, sure, like my illustrious career had no mistakes? what? i never played pro hockey? oh, well, i'm just saying.

and there was another special facet to the night. gordie was there, signing copies of his new book. i thought i'd mosey on down to see how long the line was and if i could buy a copy. well, the line wasn't bad, but a signed copy was a little out of my discretionary price range right now. nevertheless, i managed to get within 6 feet of him and pulled out my trusty camera phone. so i got that, at least.

but the bestest part of it all was spending time with my dad, whom i hardly see, even though he only lives 20 minutes from me. and despite the fact that we didn't talk all that much (stadia aren't known for their intimate, conversational atmospheres. besides, neither of us is what you'd call a chatterbox), i had a great time being with him.

thanks, daddy. i love you.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

i want my money back

Do-It-Yourself Home Surgery Kit

1 woman, full of machisma, too short on time off stubborn to see a licensed physician
1 cyst the size of a grapefruit ping pong ball
6 alcohol prep wipes
3 iodine prep wipe
1 can of spray lidocaine not given enough time to kick in
1 xacto knife
34 sheets of paper towel
1 toilet paper holder to crush while attempting to redirect the pain
1 poorly sound-proofed bathroom in which to scream
1 ruthlessly loving husband practicing his surgical skills

those ads on the backs of comic books are so misleading.

Saturday, December 15, 2007


today granny and i took pooka to see a high school/dance school production of the nutcracker. pooka sat on the floor right in front of the stage with other kids, while the adults sat in the way-too-small seats. it was a nice show. we got treats afterwards. that was my favorite part.

pooka said she enjoyed it very much. her favorite part was when her ballet teacher was front and center. i'm not sure she picked up on much else. she doesn't know the story, and of course there's no talking (or singing, for that matter). she said she would like to be in the production some day, after a few more ballet classes.


i consider myself a cultured person. i am aware of, and enjoy, many of the fine arts disciplines. i can't afford to go to as many events as i would like to, but i can still appreciate them.

but of all the fine arts i know, ballet is my least favorite. i would rather go to the opera anyday, and twice on sunday. even if they are singing in a language i don't understand.

perhaps i just don't have a firm enough grasp on the technical details of ballet to truly appreciate the beauty. i only took classes for about 8 months when i was 10.

whatever. i just know that from now on, i'm not going to any dance performances unless my kids' are actually in them.

Friday, December 14, 2007

no more mr. nice guy

my husband is a super nice guy. he's a very upstanding person who tries to always do what is right. he also likes to solve problems. other people's problems. he has a very strong sense of personal honor that requires him to help any way he can. even people who wouldn't help him if the roles were reversed. even people who've actually done him wrong.

sometimes this makes him a sucker.

when asked directly for help, he will oblige. if he has the means and the opportunity. occasionally, he doesn't really have the opportunity, but he will agree nonetheless. even if he doesn't want to help. even if helping will rob him of his opportunity to, i don't know, sleep.

this week, he has put in serious long hours at work. tuesday morning (middle of the night, really) the phone rang at 4:30 AM. someone called in sick and he was being summoned to replace them. he then proceeded to work his normal shift until 7PM that night. he came home, helped put the girls to bed, and then went to bed himself in preparation for going to work the next morning at 4 AM to cover that person again. the second day they did let him leave at 4 PM. let's see, that makes 25 hours of work on approximately 9 hours of sleep.

on his day off, he likes to play computer games. that means he's there, with the instant messaging window active, a sitting duck. his brain is a nice, juicy target for his coworkers. those coworkers who are less diligent, less creative, or just plain less intelligent than he is. they ask him, via messaging, to answer their questions; to fix their problems. and does he answer? of course he does. because it's the right thing to do. and because he can't stand not conquering the challenge.

the only way his conscience will allow him to not help is if he can avoid the request in the first place: not answering the phone, not logging in to messenger, not hearing me ask him to put away the laundry. when i tell him to ignore them, or better yet tell them to buzz off, he says that he doesn't want to look like an asshole. i say you don't have to be rude, just remind them that it's your day off and that they wouldn't want to be pestered if the roles were reversed. (in my mind thinking, that would never happen because my hubs is the smartest and there's nothing they know that he doesn't. besides which, he doesn't ask for help.)

sitting there answering their questions, doing their jobs for them doesn't make you not an asshole, it makes you a sucker, a pushover, a dork. and when geeks think you're a dork, you're in trouble.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

tardy, as per usual

back in october, the girls had their 'school' pictures taken. it's a convenient service, especially when i found out that not only do they shoot each kid individually, but if there are siblings, they shoot the sibs together, too.

that was a nice suprise, and a good enough picture that i bit the very expensive bullet to purchase prints. i fully expected to buy the group composite pictures, because mine were always fun to look back on years later. i didn't plan on buying individual shots because we had just had a family portrait done, plus we always get pooka's pix taken for her bday and will do the same for bug. moreover, we had bug's 6 month portrait taken not two weeks before the school photo shoot. so we were covered.

however, i am a sucker for my own photogenic kids (who can resist them?). so i shelled out the 18 bucks(!) for one measly 5x7 and 3 wallets.

again, nice pix, but a rip-off ultimately.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

you make bathtime so much fun

bug loves the bath, and she doesn't even need a rubber ducky. she has always loved the bath. before she could roll, she would lay on her back and kick and splash all over. when she started rolling, she would roll over and over back and forth in the water. when she was learning to crawl, she would practice in the tub, since it was nice and slippery and took less effort to drag her knees. now she's working on pulling herself up on things and she thinks this is the most fun ever:

she did this for about 15 minutes straight, laughing her cute little dupah off. of course, by the time i got the camera working, she stopped the laughter. didn't stop the slipping and sliding, though.

notice my awesome 1950's mint green porcelain. and yes, that is coral tile in the background. we are stylin'!

Monday, December 10, 2007

double your pageant, double your fun

pooka had two christmas pageants this weekend. the first was friday night at her school and the second was sunday in church.

we barely made it to friday's performance, since kisu and i had an argument and then had trouble finding a parking spot. we eventually parked in the neighborhood bordering the school.

pooka did a very good job singing, although she didn't bother doing the motions for the first song. she was very excited to be the leader of the shepherds and got a featured spot on the raised platform that also held mary, joseph, and the head angel.

kisu and i did not make it to sunday's performance. we missed church service completely and the pageant replaced the sermon at the end.

we were busy giving blood. the church had a blood drive sunday and since i was due last week to donate again and it was the easiest way for me to ensure that kisu actually donated, we did that. i honestly thought that we would be done in time for service, but we were running late, as per usual and i didn't count on the registration process taking so long. it's such a drag on the enthusiasm of donating.

pooka didn't seem to care that we missed her performance, though. she was all about the treats at the end of the ordeal. apparently, at our church the three wise men bring gold, frankincense, and brownies.

Friday, December 7, 2007

alliterative agitation

bug's bucket brings the baby blues.
her helmet heralds heartache and howling.

yeah, she don't like it.

kisu said she didn't have a problem with it when it was first put on, and even fell asleep in it. by the time i got home from work and woke her to go to pooka's concert (more about that tomorrow, probably), she was definitely fed up with it. or maybe just grumpy because she was starving.

i removed it for the concert. she will gradually spend more time in it. the first day is supposed to be one hour on, one off, and off for sleeping. the 'on' hours double every day until she's at 23 hours.

when we came home, i put it back on, thinking we could get one more hour in before bedtime. she cried for a minute, then i successfully distracted her for about 10 minutes, and finally she lost it. she was inconsolable. after 15 more minutes, i removed it to put her to bed. perhaps she was just too tired and hungry to tolerate it anymore.

it's pretty much as horrifying as i imagined it. a hard plastic shell that makes her sweat and cry. fabulous. i know it's not that big a deal and we've coped with worse and that we'll be fine after the first two weeks, but i still cried when i first saw her.

tomorrow promises to be entertaining.

Thursday, December 6, 2007

seek and ye shall find...maybe

so i finally have enough hits on my blog to do one of these posts wherein i list all the zany things people were searching for when they stumbled onto my little site. without further ado, the crazy list:

for success chicken
for failure beef?

ladybug legion
this is a kids' version of the guardian angels.
our house in adrian used to get absolutely infested with these things. it seemed magical the first year, until we realized that they were the japanese biting kind. microsoft
introducing new software that lets you do ultrasounds on your home computer?

SCRATCH beauty usa
i have no clue

chicken science centers
is that a field trip for your pet chickens? like taking your kids to the children's museum?

5 year old princess party
i will brashly claim to be an expert on this subject.

wet spot diaper
uh, the diapers are supposed to prevent the wet spot.

a lot of chicken scratch pattern searches
when i named this site i never knew there was a craft style with the same name. i'm sure a lot of people have been disappointed with their search results. perhaps i'll change the name, if i can come up with something else that i like.

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

a gift and a responsibility

her eyes possess a sparkle
seen only in the skies
her nose a charming wrinkle
when flashing gummy smiles
her chubby thighs are begging
so fondly to be pinched
she tightly holds my heartbeat
between her fists when clenched
a perfect soul residing
within this fragile frame
entrusted to my keeping
and carrying my name

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

kid swap, again.

last week i had expected a certain event to happen to bug and it ended up happening to pooka instead. today, i expected to be late for work with a medical issue for bug, and ended up nearly missing work altogether with a medical issue for pooka. i keep getting them mixed up. (at least i'm not calling them by each other's names. much.)

pooka had a meltdown with granny last night and ended up puking (in her closet, go figure.) we thought she had just worked herself up too much, as she has been known to do. around 11 pm, she got up and puked again, and spiked a fever. because of the chemo/immune system situations, if she gets over 101, we have to take her to the hospital. we couldn't get a good reading last night, but it was between 100 and 101. i decided to wait until morning so that i could get a little sleep, figuring that she would be admitted to the hospital.

(i didn't get the sleep, by the way, since we put pooka back to bed at 12, fed bug at 2, fed bug and changed her crib sheet at 4:30, alarm at 5:45. i am TIRED.)

the planned appointment this morning was to take bug to get her helmet fitted. when pooka woke up even hotter than before, that plan was scrapped. i packed an overnight bag, dropped bug off at daycare and headed down to the clinic.

fortunately, her counts were good enough that they let us go after taking blood and urine samples for culturing. they had to pump her full of fluids before she could actually pee. a little dehydrated, i guess. normally i'm on top of that, since i have a history of e.r. visits due to dehydration.

the doc wants counts again next week, though, because her liver enzymes were significantly elevated from her regular visit 2 weeks ago.

so we salvaged the day by going to work, whereupon pooka commandeered my computer to play kiddie games online. i'm sure the i.t. monitor had fun tracking that today.

Sunday, December 2, 2007

king of beasts

majestic and amazing. that pretty much sums up the show pooka and i saw friday night.

through the incredible generosity of some friends (who were otherwise occupied on friday), we went to the detr*it *pera to see the stage adaptation of one of my favorite animated movies.

although there was a slight delay in the start of the show and a time crunch during intermission to attend to the needs of the body (first empty the bladder, and then begin to fill it back up again.) the whole evening was first-rate. i had no trouble finding the place, encountered no scary situations downtown, enjoyed the show, bought a souvenir, contributed to the theater charity (pooka's idea!), and most important: had a great night out with my pooka.

she enjoyed the show very much, but it took her awhile to process everything. she couldn't tell us what her favorite part was until the next day.

my favorite part? without a doubt, it was the opening scene where the animals all gather for the presentation ceremony. i'd heard about the amazing way they'd adapted the animal costumes for the people, but seeing it onstage is wholly different. from the elegant giraffes with their stilt-walking actors to the graceful gazelle cutouts carried by dancers to the imposing elephant animated by a total of 4 humans; it was regal, it was beautiful, it was moving. i cried, just a little.

the story followed the movie almost exactly, with a few pieces that were actually in the original storyboard for the movie, but got cut. i can't think of anything significant that was omitted.

the mechanics of the show were also amazing. the stage moved in several ways and included steam vents, trap doors, and a hidden basin of water. the stampede scene employed an ingenious rotary machine, and even scar's costume was dynamic. he had what appeared to be a spring-loaded 'spine' that enabled his mask to come down and cover the actor's face when he was being particularly menacing. it was entrancing. i wish i could have gotten a close up look at how it worked exactly, but that may have ruined the magic for me.

and magical it was. despite being able to clearly see the humans who portrayed the animals (especially in the case of zazu, who at one point even acts without his bird prop), i very willingly suspended my disbelief.

it was a bit of a surprise to me how closely the voices resembled those from the movie. of course, no one can duplicate the tone and resonance of mr. jones, but it was easy to imagine that mr. lane, mr. irons, mr. atkinson (and that guy who played pumbaa) were really there. excellent casting, or excellent acting, or both.

during curtain calls pumbaa gave a plea for donations to the br*adway cares foundation and apparently it struck a chord with pooka. she wanted to make a donation. maybe something is sinking in after all.

i wanted to get a nice dessert after the show to cap off our mommy-pooka evening of elegance, but it was after 11 when the curtain fell, so we made a quick stop at the inelegant mcd's and then headed home.

dessert or no, it was a lovely evening.

hakuna matata.