Tuesday, July 31, 2007

What to do?

We are traveling in a few short weeks and there is a sleeping problem - I have a place for Meimei, but Kitten is problem. There are plenty of beds, but Kitten doesn't sleep in a bed - she's still in a crib. Where I would prefer she stay.

But there is no crib for her in Maine. My options:
Pack and Play - except we used it for a while for time out, so this is not the best option. Also rather large to carry.
Regular bed with a bed rail - not my favorite idea, as we will have to try this out before, and I'd rather not move her from the crib right now. But the bed rail is something we'll use again.
Regular bed with inflatable bolsters - interesting, but not much different than bed rail. Also, more expensive and less useful afterward.
Toddler Cot - Slightly less money, but I'm doubtful Kitten will stay on it. Also, larger to carry.
Aerobed for Kids - Ouch! $80. Nice idea, though.
Inflatable Toddler Bed - Less expensive, still not totally contained, but she won't fall out. Also comes in Dora, but not in anything less commercial.
PeaPod - cute and fun, but still of limited use and still $80
Travel 'n Trundle - doesn't look like much for $60. Unsure.
Phil & Ted's - $150? It better sing and dance, for that price. Not so much.

So, clearly, other people also have this issue, but the solutions aren't the greatest. Any opinions? Ideas?

Sunday, July 29, 2007

Kid News

Meimei's new trick. She's been standing for about a week, but she senses there is more. Much more. She is trying to move.

Oh, and Kitten wanted to show you that Mama really does wear heels.

Saturday, July 21, 2007

Unabashed Fan Love

A couple of weeks ago, Pants had me Tivo a movie (we are currently getting an introductory 3 months of movie channels) on HBO because he had seen a few minutes of it in the garage and knew he needed to see the whole thing if he was going to understand it.

On Tuesday, we watched the movie - Serenity. A little campy, but we enjoyed it.

So, Wednesday, I'm Qing Jaysan about his phone that won't work because his wireless company went bankrupt, and I tell him that I would have went all Reever on their asses. I personally think it's an obscure reference and he's going to answer with a "huh?" but I just saw the movie and I can't get the image out of my head.

But Jaysan doesn't flinch. So I ask him if he knows what I'm talking about, thinking I saw some obscure movie (I thought it was on SciFi). And Jay's like, "Um, yeah, I own that movie." So I tell him I liked it but I thought owning it went a little far. And he tells me he owns the series too.

There's a series? And he tells me it's Firefly. THAT'S FIREFLY??? And Jaysan is much amused by my naivety.

You see, I have been mocked before for not having seen Firefly. For not even knowing what it was. Most of the people I know have seen this and are devout followers.

So Jay and Ang arrange to come over and start viewings. And we watched the first 3 last night and the series is 37 times better than the movie. I LOVE IT!!

I liked the movie, but some of the writing was really hokey and the actors didn't really carry it off. But the series - the writing is tons better and funnier, the acting is better, oh my gosh I love it!!

So, this post is really to say you were all right about Firefly - it's fabulous. Some of the better comedy I've seen in a long, long time. And I am SO happy it's better than the movie. I was a bit concerned that all of you were this into something that cheesy.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Wednesday, July 18, 2007


Project gone awry

Pants and I have actually been doing laundry. So I was hanging yet another load of clothes in my closet last night and the new rod I hung up last weekend tore the brackets out of the wall and dumped everything on the floor.

And there it sits. One side is still held up by one screw, so the whole rod is cock-eyed across the back of the closet, clothes mostly on the floor, some caught in the middle of the rod. Still. And my kitty peering out at me from underneath the partially hanging clothes. (pic is sans kitty).

But it's not a total loss. I installed the rod off-level, so I was going to have to take it down anyway.

Monday, July 16, 2007

Random Thoughts

Henry Cho isn't really funny.

Traveling with a toddler is about 37 times more expensive than you can ever imagine it will be. Or you will be carrying about 96 lbs. more stuff than you carry. Pick one and commit.

Yard work trucks purchased for $79 rock. That thing's already pulled it's weight.

Dead trees suck. Especially 70-80 foot dead trees that dwarf everything else in the neighborhood. Dead trees that must be cut down within 30 days or we will be fined by the city. Aargh.

My heel got stuck in the metal groove outside the elevator today, literally stuck, and I couldn't get my foot out, and the elevator started buzzing because I was keeping the door open WITH MY LEG, and I finally took my foot out of the shoe (which is lovely when you are barefoot and haven't painted your toenails in many weeks) and pulled the shoe out, but unfortunately left the little rubber heel part in the groove, so now the shoe is ruined and the elevator door doesn't want to close because there's a little plastic shoe piece in there. And I debated if I should report it to building services, but the door closed finally and I forgot about it, what with throwing out my shoes and all. I really liked that pair.

Kitten got a timeout at daycare today. For sitting on her sister. I know you think that's funny, but it's not. Ok, it's sorta funny.

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Parental Advice?

I'm starting a new section of parenting advice - take with a grain of salt and several ounces of Shiraz.

My first bit of advice? When your children get to a certain age, oh, say, about 18 months - 2 years, people will buy them lovely wooden peg puzzles. The ones with the large wooden pieces that match the pictures underneath and have pegs on the top for easier grabbing for little fingers that are still learning how they work.

These are wonderful toys that help your children learn - by themselves even. Cherish them. But some of these puzzles have little solenoids. So that when you put the piece in, it makes a noise.

For the love of God, DO NOT PUT BATTERIES IN THIS TOY. This is a lovely puzzle UNTIL YOU PROVIDE A POWER SOURCE.

You will start to feel lazy, not getting out the screwdriver to take off the battery cover, and cheap because you won't put two double-As into your beautiful child's toy for their learning and enjoyment. BUT DO NOT GIVE IN.

I will tell you what happens if you do:
  • The sound these puzzles make is akin to 80s electronic toys - tinny and bearing little resemblance to the advertised sound. What it lacks in clarity, it makes up for in volume. Your teeth will crawl back up into your skull.
  • The children will run from this toy and never play with it again, diving into your lap and saying, "[S]Cared, mama, cared!"
  • If you don't have all pieces in at all times (and trust me, you won't), the sound represented by the missing piece will go off EVERY TIME you turn off the lights. This is just a little thing that senses darkness, so it doesn't discern if you put in the piece or blocked out the sun. Although, you might be comforted to know the little ambulance siren will go off in the event of an apocalyptic meteor strike.
So, take my word for it. Save the batteries for the remote so you can rewind Elmo's World one more time.

Sunday, July 08, 2007

Childish Musings

Tried to get a picture, but you'll just have to imagine - Pants is on the kitchen floor trying to see if the half inch of water on the floor is from the dishwasher, and Kitten is laying on the threshold between the kitchen and living room behind him with her head on the floor, too. Must be a cool game. (P.S. - no idea what the water was from, but it wasn't from the sink or dishwasher. We figure either Kitten spilled a glass of water very quietly and picked up the glass after and put it back on the counter, or she opened the dishwasher at a time when some water would come out, freaked out, and slammed it back shut.)

Meimei's hand got pinched in the plastic kid's changing table doors this morning - not sure if she accidentally put her weight on the door while holding the top, or if someone didn't want her catching on to the secret hiding place and slammed it shut on her finger. My vote's on the latter.

Wednesday, July 04, 2007

Celebrating our independence by prostrating myself to the children

Ah, Independence Day:

The signing of the Declaration of Independence? No. It was signed mostly throughout the next couple of months. No email, folks, no fax, just horses and long days of travel. It took awhile to get everyone's John Hancock on the document.

Fireworks. And not the "ooh ahh" kind of way. Pants is outside right now making sure the house isn't on fire. It appears that our neighborhood did not learn last year's lesson of the house on the cul-de-sac burning down from wayward fireworks. The whole neighborhood is pulsating with illegal fireworks. I'm so glad we have been left with Jesse Ventura's legacy of legal fireworks so that every dork thinks they have a right to buy illegal fireworks because "no one will notice."

Went to a parade in Afton today. Other than driving an hour to sit out in the super-hot sun for an 8-block parade stacked 6 people deep where the floats have to double back on themselves because they have nowhere else to go, it was a nice day. Jeff James (friend of Pants) was playing outside the Afton Inn and Catfish Saloon, which is what we really went to see, and oddly, SIL's quasi-boyfriend/whatever-boy works at the Catfish Saloon, so she is already there with his kids watching the parade. And Jeff's wife is there with their two kids, and then a friend of hers that we also know showed up too. Fun day, buy very hot and tiring. Once again, my kids rock. They were perfect!

One year, when we lived in North Dakota where fireworks are legal and they send you catalogs, my parents ordered a batch of fireworks and we set them off on the quiet street in front of our house. We had a great time, my parents played it pretty safe (although I now know it's an illusion, the neighbors thought they were safe in the cul de sac). But we had fun and I still remember that July 4th.

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Love it!

If you have kids, and you have not yet discovered Kidsurplus.com, go there now. Do not pass go, do not read the rest of this post. Now. Go.

Best new purchase? Stride Rite sandals for $17.99. I know the size, just needed to find them in the right size, and cheap. And sometimes the outlet? None in the right size. And the shipping from Kidsurplus.com? Probably what I would pay for gas to and from Albertville anyway, only to find they are nearly out of everything in Kitten's size and I can't get the nice velcro ones. Cuz tying shoes on a 2 year old is hard enough, but just try buckling a pair of sandals. I'd rather shave my head with a cheese grater.

Oh, and while you are there, check out their clearance section. You're paying shipping anyway, and I believe it's flat rate, so get a couple of other things you need. Like a new bottle brush. And this cool little thing that you can stick onto seat belt buckles that makes it really icky-feeling for toddlers to try to press them. And for less than $2, I think I'll find out if it works. And a couple of new hats for the kiddos (vacation at the beach later this summer, you know). You'll be amazed at what you can find in the clearance section that you would buy anyway.

And then. You must look through the toys. Some of the best brands, like Melissa and Doug, Manhattan Toy, Learning Curve, Lamaze, Haba, in addition to the standard brands - Sassy, First Years, Fisher Price, etc.

The website is not terribly well organized, but it's worth the time to browse through occasionally when you need something else anyway. Take the time to try it out, you won't be disappointed!

Monday, July 02, 2007

Dead dead dead dead dead

I am PG because I use the word dead. I also used the word hell once, but dead was the overriding factor.

So let's see what's up with dead:

We have tried to teach Kitten to whisper, "I see dead people." It hasn't gone terribly well, and we're not sure what daycare would think, but we think it would be fall-over hilarious.

I mentioned once that I was watching CSI and they were in the person's apartment, which was immaculate, and they found crumbs on the floor and deduced that the murder (dead dead dead) had started there. I looked around and deduced that no one would ever know someone had been killed in my living room, even if it was drenched in blood. (blood blood blood - where does that get me?)

Disco is dead. It's true.

I have a disturbing number of dead pets. Not like, here in the house, I mean historically. This includes countless fish, three gerbils, several dogs, at least three cats, and a duck. That's right, I said duck. Dead duck.

My new appliances are deadly awesome. Is that a stretch?

Oops. Apparently my cell phone is also dead, which I think is cheating for a PG Rating.

The missing pregnant woman is dead. Let's count missing, found-dead pregnant women (that we know of from national media):
1. Lacy Peterson
2. That other dead pregnant woman from the same area Scott Peterson's lawyers tried to tie her murder to.
3. That Hawking chick from Utah they found at the dump - ok, she was only like, 6 weeks pregnant, but she counts.
4. Apparently another pregnant Utah chick was found dead behind a gas station in Raleigh NC last month. Hmmm.
5. Newly-dead pregnant chick, killed in front of her son by her baby-daddy.
And the number 1 cause of death for pregnant women? Murder. Look it up.

I think Freddie is dead. No more Elm Street movies.

Anything else?

Sunday, July 01, 2007

Random Thoughts

Reached a milestone in human development this morning - Kitten blamed her sister for farting.

Scrapbooked last night - wow, do I need to tame down my supplies. I have entirely too much stuff, so that's my next project - go through and get rid of some things until I know what I have and can actually find it.

On the bright side, got the "pictures with Santa book" updated. One page per year is easy enough to keep up with. Got the Antiquities proofs into a book like the one I did for my mom for Christmas. Doing the same book a second time? EASY. And got my princess book started, although I found I didn't have all the pictures with me once I got there. I did get 5 pages down, though.

You know it's a sign of your current life situation when you are so excited to have a whole day off, alone. And the reason you are so excited? Your house is going to get SO CLEAN. Another sign of your life? In two new or newly renovated houses, you are not coveting the actual house, but the beautiful, efficient washer and dryer. Just imagine how fast you could do laundry in THOSE. Can you feel that warmth as you fold THREE LOADS OF LAUNDRY AT ONCE, secure in the knowledge that what amounts to SIX MORE LOADS is happily washing and drying downstairs? Is this heaven, sir? No, it's Whirlpool.