Monday, February 28

Sorry, Charlie, but you're icky

You know, back in the day, I had quite the crush on Charlie Sheen. I had a poster up in my room, read all the little articles, kept all the pictures, and saw all the movies. Anything and everything involving him and his face, I wanted a part of. My god, I paid money to see The Chase in the theater. I used to think that, if only he had me in his life, I would be enough for him that he'd stay away from his cheerleader hookers and booze. This was, of course, before news of all the porn stars and harder drugs became known. I was repulsed enough just that he had his hookers dress up like cheerleaders. An offense, at that time, to be sure.
Crushes as severe as mine never really go away completely. Sure, the "love" for the crush-ee fades, but the inherent interest in what that person has going on in their life always remains. So, all these years, I've had a passing interest in every article, story and news bit on Charlie Sheen. I'm not proud if that, but shit, I tell you guys everything.
But most definitely, my interest in Sheen lately has been more of the train-wreck variety. I find myself physically cringing whenever I see him on television, as well as wiping at my eyes before I read any articles on him, just so I'm sure the words are coming across clearly. No joke, Sheen is on a crazy train, which has no depot in sight. He's ass over teacup insane with his own importance, and needs to have his head put in check. The shit he's throwing around out there, on national television, no less, is beyond anyone's psycho delusions.
I find myself completely and totally done hearing about and from him, and hoping that CBS and the production company actually do cancel his show forever. (That would suck for Jon Cryer, no doubt, but Ducky always lands on his feet.) Sheen has just taken a walk off the map.

Passing on the disco ball again

I find myself wondering who Dancing with the Stars would have to have on the show for me to watch it again. It's not like I don't like any of the "stars" that will be "dancing" this spring, but I don't think that any of them are enough to pull me in this season. It's a drag, really, but I have no idea who would be fantastic enough to make me commit to two nights a week again. You know what's weird? I can't even think of any suggestions that would make me tune in.
But in fairness to the stars signed on for the season, I'll list them for you:
Ralph Macchio, the baby-faced star of three Karate Kid movies and My Cousin Vinny
Kirstie Alley, starred in Fat Actress, Veronica’s Closet, and, of course, Cheers
Petra Nemcova, a Czech model who’s been linked to James Blunt and Sean Penn
Wendy Williams, a frank talk-show host
Sugar Ray Leonard, the Olympic gold-medal-winning boxer who, as a pro, famously claimed world titles in five weight divisions
Psycho Mike, a.k.a. Michael Catherwood, a popular deejay for KROQ in Los Angeles
Chelsea Kane, best known for playing Stella on Disney Channel’s Jonas L.A.
Romeo, once known as Lil Romeo, is a rapper, actor, and son of past DWTS participant Master P
Kendra Wilkinson, the former star of E!’s The Girls Next Door and the current star of her own eponymous reality show
Chris Jericho, a pro wrestler who won 23 championships in the WWE
Hines Ward, an NFL Pro Bowler from the Pittsburgh Steelers and the third wide receiver to appear on DWTS
I'd almost think about watching because of Kirstie Alley, but she's a bit too crazy. Like Denise Richards crazy from a season or two ago. Ralph Macchio? Meh. And everyone else is even less "meh" than him. No, thanks. I'll be stepping away again. That's too bad.

Sunday, February 27

And the Oscar goes to .... ME!

I love me some Oscars!! Katy came over to watch the awards show with us, and we had a lovely time chatting about dresses, and the people that wear them and/or stand next to them. Scores on the ballots: Brian, 6; Katy, 11; and me, the awesome one, 13. You see, I have to gloat about winning because on the off chance that I lose to my husband, I get more shit about it then you can imagine. Because even though he doesn't really care, he does get competitive with the Oscar ballots.
Shotgun reactions to tonight's ceremony:
~ Did not love James Franco as a host, and thought Anne Hathaway was almost too perky. She was game for everything, and has a surprisingly good voice, but even all that couldn't take away from the fact that Franco looked too stoned and out of it to participate much. I loved her shoes with the tuxedo. And the blue dress.
~ Thoroughly enjoyed Melissa Leo dropping "f*ck" in her acceptance speech. It loosened everything and everyone up a whole lot.
~ Can't believe that it's been a year since the whole Sandra Bullock/Jesse James thing. Cheers to her for ditching the douche.
~ Dug Kirk Douglas (for being a ham), Reese Witherspoon (for her ponytail), Halle Berry (for the dress), Robert Downey, Jr. and Jude Law (for the camaraderie), Hugh Jackman (for rolling with everyone picking on him), Colin Firth (for having a sense of humor), Natalie Portman (for the purple dress with NO BIG ROSE ON IT), Alec Baldwin (for being in the opening) ... more to come tomorrow, I'm sure
~ Didn't dig Christian Bale's beard, Melissa Leo's dress, all the flesh-colored and muted fabrics ... and more to come tomorrow.
~ I wish I'd seen more of the movies, but really, I feel like I got through the whole thing okay.

Saturday, February 26

Bake your cake and eat it, too

It's cool how, when you know you're moving, you start digging into the pantry a bit more, emptying it before moving the contents. I have decided that this process, for me, will include all the cake mixes. I've got a lemon bar mix, as well as crumb cake, gingerbread, and Devil's Food. I envision that I will be baking a new kind of cakey treat every week until we move. Tomorrow's dessert, in honor of the Oscars, will be the crumb cake. I read through the instructions today, and I have to say, they are quite elaborate for a cake mix. Not that I'm intimidated. Indeed, far from it. If anyone can master a cake mix, it's me. No, I was just struck with the six or seven steps it's going to take to get the crumb cake made, as well as the 45-minute baking time. Dollops of baking mix here, drops of crumb mix there, swirling hither, mixing thither. It's all very complicated. But I imagine it will be quite delightful.
I made my second sale on Craig's List today: the push mower, for $20. Not wonderful, but considering that I could have not sold it, and just donated it for no money at all, I'm okay with the $20. But another one of my big-ticket items is going to a buyer tomorrow morning. I got an e-mail regarding the electric mower, for $100. The guy seemed okay with the price tag, which he should because it's about half of what you could get any other electric mower, and is eager to make the purchase. Happy day, peeps, my Craig's List sojourn is going extremely well!
Also, my list is progressing.

Friday, February 25

10 things for the weekend ... perhaps

I feel like today was one of those days when I should have just stayed home. But between Daisy chewing on a dead bird this morning (and me having to forcefully pry it out of her mouth), and the fact that we actually did do some good things away from the house, I'm somewhat pleased that we did exit the domicile for a few hours here and there.
Goals for the weekend, which begins tomorrow, because I'm too tired to consider Friday night as part of the weekend:
1.) Swim school make-up class at 9 a.m. Saturday morning. I have to mention this, because I know for sure that I may forget about it, and I don't want to forget. So, I keep reminding myself every chance I get.
2.) Pack three boxes. I have my eye on three boxes that can be packed this weekend: one each in the kitchen, bathroom and office. Also, the backyard box and a box or two in the garage and one in the living room, but these are optional.
3.) Clean up Sydney's backyard toys. Once again, this lands on the list.
4.) Pick some weeds, pull out a tree, and try to clean up the backyard a bit more. So, gloves and a couple hours spent outside one day, probably tomorrow. Should be a good time.
5.) Grocery store. This will be done with Brian tomorrow, though he doesn't know it yet. He has to come with me, otherwise I get all kinds of static about how I only buy food for Sydney.
6.) Watch the Oscars, as best I can, with minimal interruptions. I'm excited that Katy will be watching the show with us!
7.) Get to bed at a decent time, tonight, tomorrow night and Sunday night. Decent time = 11 p.m. or before. Tonight, already, I'm cutting it close, as my clock already reads 10:26 p.m.
8.) Clean my bathroom. Ugh. I hate that one.
9.) Do my nails. This light purple was working for me, but I'm feeling a bit darker now.
10.) Fail to get all of these things done. I might as well make this one of my goals, so then I won't feel bad about not meeting all my goals!

Thursday, February 24

I guess I'll forever be just writing about it

Sydney and I watched the launch of the space shuttle Discovery this afternoon. It was weirdly awesome sharing my own secret (and not so secret) obsession with her. We watched the five-minute countdown, and she humored me well by asking questions, staying put on my lap, and pretending like this meant as much to her as it did to me. I almost cried as I watched the launch, knowing it was the last one, and that I've never seen one in person, and now, never will. Still, it was pretty special for me to watch the launch with her.
I'll tell her about it one day, that she sat so patiently on my lap as I waxed nostalgic and melancholy about my own never-realized dreams of flying into space on the shuttle. And she'll say to me, "Well, why didn't you do it?" And I'll have to admit that I was never an astronaut because it required too much math.

Wednesday, February 23

I am Belle! I AM!!

I have a new profile picture for Facebook, and I kind of love it. It's not a picture of me, technically, but it is certainly more me than any other cartoon character in a Starbucks. (Note that I cropped the Facebook picture to include only Belle.) But I love, love, love this image. It's a fantastic thing to imagine that Belle and Ariel would be chilling in a Starbucks, drinking their coffees, and chatting about their respective husbands (i.e., Beast and Prince Eric, respectively).
I've always felt that Belle and I were kindred spirits, you know, one and the same: we love to read books, enjoy staying home with the parents, totally dance along with household utensils and a candlestick, fell in love with a beast, and can rock a blue ribbon and ponytail. (Obvious differences tend toward Belle's benefits, including: good singing voice, can wear a yellow dress without looking pale and drawn, and no frizz issues with said ponytail.) So, when I saw this image of Belle, my cartoon doppelganger, enjoying a Starbucks drink, I knew that I had to have it as my profile picture, and to post it up here on the blog.

It's a nebula

I only need to wait another nine minutes until I can go into the living room and sing "Happy Birthday" to Brian.
My fingers and toes are so cold, it's ridiculous. My bedroom is the coldest place in the house right now, I'm convinced. I don't think I'll ever get warm.
I did clean the bathroom tonight. It sucked. There's a reason why I haven't cleaned my own bathroom in six years. Because it's a fucking drag. Scrubbing toilets, wiping out sinks and dusting towel racks is not my cup of tea, and I'm not embarrassed to admit it. I genuinely don't get these women who love to clean. In my opinion, it's a necessary evil that I will HAPPILY pay someone else to do for me.
I filled out our tax information, and it wasn't as painful as I was afraid. It never is, but the task always seems so daunting that I tend to avoid it for as long as I can. But, well, we need the refund as soon as possible, so the task was completed today. Yay taxes!
Also, I'm sending in the registration fee for Sydney's new preschool in Houston tomorrow. I'm nervous, but really, it's all good. The preschool director, Amy, seemed genuinely pleased to hear that I was enrolling Sydney at her school, and that made me feel better about my decision. Still, I'll be looking forward to touring the place when we make it out there in April or May.
Jeez, I honestly can't type too well because my fingers are that cold. It is time to get into bed and warm up under my blankets. But first, it's also time to sing!!

Monday, February 21

I did pack three boxes though...

I'm having that kind of day again where I can't get warm. I'm sitting here in Cozy Chair, with my jeans and shoes on, wearing a long-sleeved shirt and a sweatshirt, with the hood up. And still, my nose feels cold. I refuse to turn on the heater because I know that I'm the only one in the house suffering. Brian and Sydney, blessed with their metabolisms, are chillin' in single layers, and comfortable with it. The inequality of that is beyond frustrating, but oh well. Still, I'm looking forward to being snuggly warm in bed in the next 30 minutes or so.
But first, I'm watching Hawaii 5-O. This show is pretty awesome. I like the activity on it. It's quick and loose. I mean, it's certainly gory at times, and I'm still kinda surprised they showed that severed head a few weeks ago, but really, it's a fun cop show. I used to be able to wait until Tuesday afternoons to watch the Monday night show. But lately, I've been watching it Monday nights after Chuck and Castle. It's too good to wait on. Also, the two main characters, partners in the special police unit of "5-O," have the most fantastically sarcastic, man-crush, bromance on television. They're like the best kind of cop partners. They make the show so much better.
Also, no, I did not clean the bathroom today.

Sunday, February 20

Like a storm cloud of traffic

Well, it's been a weekend!
Friday night we drove down to Brian's home town to spend a couple days with his parents. We got back a few hours ago, but not without some last-minute changes to plans, an unexpected visit, and some rain. We hopped on the freeway with minimal problems, but once we got through Tucson, the freeway slammed shut with traffic, with the ridiculously under-inflated statement, "Road Closed." This, on the 10 freeway. So, we got off the road as soon as we could, and called Brian's sister, who lives in Tucson. If she wanted company, we would be at her place in 20 minutes. Happily, Lisa and Brad said, sure, so we made our way to their house for a visit to wait out the traffic. It turned out to be a lovely, perfectly lovely, visit, and we got home a couple ours later than we originally thought, but happier than had we made the trip straight through.
So now, I'm back home. I've got a boatload of laundry to do, as well as the unpacking from the weekend. Oh yeah, and I've got to get some more packing done. Also, for the first time in a few years, I'll be cleaning a bathroom. Sydney's bathroom is looking pretty grimy tonight, so taking care of it is on my list for tomorrow. Yes, I will employ a toilet brush as well as other instruments of cleanliness.
I think I may have found a new magazine to subscribe to, also. Real Simple. Anyone else read that? I flipped through Brian's mom's latest issue this weekend and decided that it was worth my time and brain power. So, that'll happen once we get to Houston.

Thursday, February 17


I've got issues today. I hate having issues.
First, my "cold" has settled into half of my nose, and apparently, is completely happy with setting up camp for the indefinite future. At this point though, I think I've got a sinus infection or something. What I've got going on is more than just cold runnings. It's more complex (and gross, and thick) than all that, and I'm thinking I may need some kind of antibiotic.
Second, my kid got on my last nerve today. I know that being the mom means doing for the kid all day and everything, but my goodness, I got so tired of being ordered around by a four-year-old today. As if wiping her butt every time she goes potty isn't enough, being at the beck and call of a child just got to be too much for me. Are pink pants really a reason for tears? Is a bath really call for pouting, and angrily splashing around? So, maybe it was her being so FOUR today, or maybe I just had a really short fuse, but I took the initiative of being the mom, and put Sydney to bed about 85 minutes early. I'll be paying for it tomorrow morning when she's wide awake at 6 a.m., but tonight, it feels just fine.
Third, I didn't get a single box packed, nor did I get the taxes done. Tomorrow.
Fourth, only one of my CraigsList items have sold. It was though, the Ab Circle Pro, and I did get $100 for it, so I'm happy about that. I just wish the others would sell. How come no one wants my lawn mowers or the crib? I'll wait a couple weeks, of course, and see what happens.
Fifth, I know this whole post sounds pathetic and whiny, and issue-laden. That is all.

Wednesday, February 16

"Garage" is just a six-letter word

Oh-em-gee, you all, Brian and I took care of the garage today. Honestly, the sexiest thing he's said to me in a while was this morning's, "We should pack the garage today." "WE." Really, he said, "WE." Loving that man right now, especially since he followed through on his statement, and worked in the garage all morning with me, and into the afternoon. We are down boxes, and I've got a very full recycling bin on my curb and a half-full trash bin in my garage. Also, I made a mammoth donation drop at Goodwill. I've got maybe two or three more boxes to pack in there, and then, officially, the garage is d-o-n-e. I was afraid of the garage, you know. I had been avoiding it, and every time I went in to get the car, or drove in to park the car, I'd just look around and fear the enormity of the task ahead of me. Tackling it with Brian was awesome, as we got to laugh at stuff, reminisce about stuff, cry over stuff (actually, that was just me), and throw stuff away. And now, the garage is a tamed task, and I'm ready to move on to the next place.

Tuesday, February 15

Stealth cupcake ... or not

I had a pretty good and productive day. But first, I must tell you that I got busted trying to sneak a cupcake this afternoon by my mother, who I think has some weird kind of telepathy, who called right at the moment after I had diced up the cake and was ready to dig into it. Let's better this by admitting that I also was hiding in my room, and had avoided all three of my kids seeing the treat so I wouldn't have to share. There's something not right in my head sometimes when it comes to sugary goodness. It's a sickness. Honestly. But that's neither here nor there. The point is that I enjoyed the cupcake with less guilt about it since at least Mom knew that I was eating it. She said she could picture me hiding under a blanket eating it. Not a blanket, literally, but a blanket of subterfuge, definitely.

Other productive things I did today:
Worked out at the gym. Took the kid to the dinosaur museum. Pulled weeds and cut back plants in front yard. Watered backyard. Posted ads for sale on CraigsList. Vacuumed. Put away Valentine's Day decorations. Packed up additional holiday decorations. Made dinner. (YES, you read that last one correctly.) Watched and enjoyed Glee. Getting to bed before 11:30 p.m.

Monday, February 14

I love cupcakes, especially on Valentine's Day

I'm usually not a big fan of Sprinkles, the cupcake place. But I think that yesterday may have changed my mind toward the store. Brian and Sydney visited yesterday and brought home a lovely assortment of cupcakes for our eating pleasure. We've only dug into three of them so far -- dark, dark chocolate; chocolate, chocolate chip with raspberry frosting; and chocolate, marshmallow-filled -- and so far, they've been winners. I'm not going to tiptoe around the facts, people. My favorite was the chocolate and raspberry, and I finished the group cupcake yesterday afternoon. Guess what I had for breakfast, after my workout, this morning. Yep, the other chocolate cupcake with raspberry frosting. And it was delicious. I told Brian, who mocked me for having what should be a sad, single, and fat girl's Valentine breakfast. I celebrate my Valentine breakfast. And all the brownies I had this afternoon. It's been a good day.
I feel as though my point has gotten lost here. The point is that I now am a fan of Sprinkles. Good stuff.

Sunday, February 13

I'm tired of hearing "Need You Now"

I'm tired, and want to go to bed, so I'll just catch you up on my "Goals for my weekend," and let you know how I did.
1.) Success. Four boxes in the kitchen: done, done, done and done.
2.) Failure. We did watch most of The Sunset Limited on HBO on Saturday night, but that was it for me for movies this weekend.
3.) Failure ... technically. The toys are still a mess, but we did cut back the plants and clean up our grassy knoll. So, backyard success regardless.
4.) Failure. We're all still blowing our noses, and Sydney even sounded snottier this morning. Brian's kicking it though, so by Wednesday (at the latest), it should really be gone.
5.) Success. Though really, I remember why I don't care for the Grammys all that much. The performances were okay, but some of the music had me scratching my head, and some of the performers had us fast forwarding. Still, I can be a part of the Grammys conversation tomorrow.
6.) Failure. I didn't even pick up the Vanity Fair magazines.
7.) Success. I still have only one pending e-mail in my inbox.
So, let's do a count. Success: 3. Failure: 4. Close, and I would, under normal circumstances, call the weekend a failure because of that, but really, I got quite a bit done and I'm feeling good about that. So, weekend: SUCCESS.
Next weekend's list of being composed though, as I type this.

Saturday, February 12

Pretty, but too scratchy, plants

It was a lovely day today. I think the high was around 80 degrees. I've decided that I'm a warm-weather girl. If for only the reason that it's easier to put on flip flops than socks and shoes. It was pretty wonderful to be able to wear flips and a short-sleeved shirt to lunch today. And we sat outside.
Brian and I also took advantage of the warm weather and cleaned up the backyard. Actually, I started it, and he was kind enough to do all my heavy lifting once he realized how much my task would entail. I had decided to cut back our three, quite huge, bougainvillea bushes in the backyard. They had all borne the brunt of the freezing nights, and all the flowers and leaves on the plants had died. So really, it was a land of brown and crusty bougainvillea. My original plan, truthfully, was to leave the third plant, but once I was done with the first two, that third one just looked too big. Brian had the big clippers, I had the small ones, and we went to work on this plant. It's definitely cut back, but it'll be green and growing in no time. I swear, our neighbor is probably having a party right now, because that third plant hung over the wall, and I'm sure was as much a visual eyesore for him as it was for me. But more than anything, I have the scratches to prove that I did battle with three bougainvilleas today. Scratches, scratches, scratches. Yuck. We also made a promise to each other to not ever have bougainvillea in our backyard. Even if we have a gardener -- someone else has to maintain the plant -- there will be no bougainvillea in the yard. Too pointy. And messy.

Friday, February 11

Goals for my weekend

1.) Start packing the kitchen stuff. I usually don't sweat the kitchen, but for some reason, I've been avoiding it. I've done a lot in the office, did a bit in my bedroom today, and started on the living room. But the kitchen remains an untouched entity. Until this weekend. I shall start with the Christmas dishes and serving platters. For obvious reasons, Sydney's room will be the last to be packed.
2.) Movie trifecta. Actually, I'm already one-third of the way there. Brian and I just watched Takers, which was okay. Not great, not bad. Just okay. The other two movies in the house: Piranha and Shrek Ever After.
3.) Clean up the backyard toys. Sydney's been going crazy dirty destructive with the stuff out there lately, and it's been cold, so I haven't made any effort to curtail her activities. This weekend though, I'm going to have to pry the sidewalk chalk out of the hammer holes on the playhouse.
4.) Finish kicking this cold out of the house. I'm still blowing my nose, though not as often. Sydney finished up her last dose of antibiotics today, and coughed only two or three times that I heard. Currently, Brian is the sick person in the home. Let's get him healthy and get the rest of this bug gone, shall we?
5.) Watch the Grammys. I've not watched the Grammys in a few years. I don't know why I'm into it this year, but I am. I'm intrigued about the performances. I want to see the hot mess.
6.) Read my two issues of Vanity Fair. I've got the Johnny Depp issue from December, and the March issue about Hollywood. I skipped the Justin Bieber issue in January. But I do need to catch up on some reading.
7.) I only have one pending e-mail in my inbox. This isn't a goal, it's a fact, and I'm bragging about it. It's been a long time since I had such a short list in the inbox. In fact, cleaning out the e-mail inbox was a New Year's resolution. A little late perhaps, but done.

Thursday, February 10

100 things ... and counting down

So, I've got this weird, restless feeling today. I'm bored looking at my stuff, and I want to get it all packed up.
Tired of making the bed? Box up all the decorative pillows.
Done with all the accessories in the kitchen? Box 'em up.
I never really realize just how much random s-t-u-f-f I have hanging around my house until I get to that point in my head when I see all the stuff around me as just stuff. It serves no real purpose, except to be pretty, or fashionable, or perfectly fill the space. I look around and all I see is what can be boxed up for the next five months. It's pretty liberating, but also kinda annoying. Annoying, of course, because it means that I've spent all kinds of money on stuff that isn't necessary.
It reminds me of the 100 things article a few months back about the couple who pared down all their belongings to 100 things per person. I bet I can get Brian and I down to 100 things for the next couple months (not including Sydney's stuff, of course).
OMG, you guys. I think I may have found the right kind of personal challenge for the next couple months. This could be awesome.

Wednesday, February 9

Is red velvet cake even good? Um, YES!

An article caught my eye on Yahoo! this evening regarding red velvet cake. The headline that intrigued me was about what most people leave out of their cakes. This mystery ingredient is pecans, which I wouldn't ever include anyway. But the article goes on to point out that so many bakers make the cake wrong, according to a true Southern woman. I don't know why, but this messed with my head a bit, because a California girl should be able to make a good red velvet cake, too. (Duly noted that I probably won't ever make this cake, but my hackles got raised anyway.) At the end of the article was a proper recipe for a red velvet cake/cupcakes. I pasted it below, so you all can make it, too.

Paula Deen’s Red Velvet Cupcakes from Food Network
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cocoa powder
1 1/2 cups vegetable oil
1 cup buttermilk, room temperature
2 large eggs, room temperature
2 tablespoons red food coloring
1 teaspoon white distilled vinegar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line 2 (12-cup) muffin pans with cupcake papers. In a medium mixing bowl, sift together the flour, sugar, baking soda, salt, and cocoa powder. In a large bowl gently beat together the oil, buttermilk, eggs, food coloring, vinegar, and vanilla with a handheld electric mixer. Add the sifted dry ingredients to the wet and mix until smooth and thoroughly combined.
Divide the batter evenly among the cupcake tins about 2/3 filled. Bake in oven for about 20 to 22 minutes, turning the pans once, half way through. Test the cupcakes with a toothpick for doneness. Remove from oven and cool completely before frosting.

For the Cream Cheese Frosting
1 pound cream cheese, softened
2 sticks butter, softened
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
4 cups sifted confectioners' sugar
Chopped pecans and fresh raspberries or strawberries, for garnish
In a large mixing bowl, beat the cream cheese, butter and vanilla together until smooth. Add the sugar and on low speed, beat until incorporated. Increase the speed to high and mix until very light and fluffy.
Garnish with chopped pecans, fresh raspberry or strawberry, or sprinkles.

Boxes packed today: 5; Total boxes packed: 14.

Tuesday, February 8

Cold, cold toesies

So, I decided to bring in the power of the blue toenail polish this evening. Though right now, I find myself wishing that I'd gone with the power of the purple instead. I love the blue, but I'm feeling a bit more purple right now. Anyway, the blue toes also are incredibly cold, as with the fresh polish, there's no socks permitted. I've got a blanket on my legs, but the toes have to be strong outside the covers. They complain.
Boxes packed today: 6; Total boxes packed: 9.

Monday, February 7

And let the boxes BEGIN!!

So, I think, as a fun random, anal-retentive activity for me, I shall keep a running tally of the boxes I've packed each day for the move. I'm feeling good about our little life today, even if my kid does have viral bronchitis. I turned in the lease applications for our new apartment today, and they went through the credit process with flying colors. So, our new house is guaranteed for late March.
And with that, I got antsy for the move.
Boxes packed today: 3; Total boxes packed: 3.
I enjoy the packing process. Yes, perhaps this could be considered somewhat bizarre, but I see every move as a chance to start anew. Every packing is a reason to get leaner and meaner with our possessions (though we always end up with more stuff after each house). And every new place is a new adventure. And because we've moved so often, I have a method to my moving. It begins with my sittin' outs, and the bookcases. Today, I packed up my curio cabinet. (By the way, I am fully aware that a lot of this won't make any sense to you, but it makes me feel better to list the stuff I've done for the day.) I also packed up the cubbies in the living room, which includes the stereo with a cassette player in it, and all the Wii accessories.

Editor's note: For every blog post that is almost exclusively about the move, I shall post a picture of a pretty flower, because flowers are always a nicer to see than boxes.

Sunday, February 6

Super Bowl Sunday evening post

Since I didn't give much of a care who won the Super Bowl today, I kept up what Brian called a "stream of consciousness" on Facebook regarding the commercials. My favorites: NFL's fan's are awesome, VW beetle with the racing stripe, and Darth Vader and the VW. Clearly, Volkswagen got their mney's worth when it came to their advertising agency. Failures include Coke (dragons? Really?), (as usual), and Best Buy (please, no more Bieber). As it was, I watched the game kinda halfheartedly, though I had hoped that Green Bay would pull out the win. I'm glad for the outcome, even if it wasn't the Patriots winning the big game.
Also, I officially have another cold. Man, I am so over this. I was so fatigued today that I didn't spend much time off the sofa, except to change Sydney's movie, television show or food choice. (I was, actually, quite a bad mom today. Everything I did was about keeping her busy in the other room. Today sucked for everyone.) Sydney still has her cold, too, so the chilling out was good for both of us. Still, I'm tired of being in my house, and am looking forward to our day tomorrow.
It's uncharacteristic of us to be stuck on one television channel for an entire day. Once Glee was over, I was all, "Hello, remote control, my old friend. What? There are other channels? What, of all things good, are on them?"

Saturday, February 5

A cupcake a day, makes ....

a cold go away?? Wouldn't that be nice!!

I told myself that I would have this post, and all my computer dicking around, done by 11 p.m. As it is 10:58 p.m. as I begin this, I realize that the time frame will not suffice. Oh well. I'll do this quickly, and then get to bed. Because, drum roll, please, Sydney's gotten me sick ... again. I love my kid, and the fact that she loves me too, but my goodness, there has got to be a way to tell a little kid that they simply can't be nose-to-nose with you all the time when they're sick. And all the times she sneaks a drink out of my water. Or how many times I get coughed on. Ugh. So, here I am, breathing out of my mouth, having just taken a couple NyQuil. One day, I think we'll all be healthy again. It wasn't today, and it probably won't be tomorrow either.
We did get a pretty major task done today though. We have secured our apartment for the three months or so we'll need it between leaving the house here and moving to Houston. We'll have plenty of space, for a two bedroom (master and loft) place, and a balcony for the doggies. Also, they have storage units for rent in the garage, so we'll be able to store a bunch of stuff while we're there. Unfortunately, the storage spaces don't go as big as we had hoped, but we think that we may be able to take two on moving day, if we need. At any rate, the apartment is nailed down, and I'm feeling more relaxed because of that. Now, it's time to pack.
I pulled all our boxes down from the shelving yesterday and distributed them throughout the house. They're all still labeled for the room and contents, too. This could be awesome or frustrating though. You all know how crazy I can be about this kind of thing. "But this box says it should have small appliances! I have more than what fits in here! WHERE IS THE BOX FOR THE OTHER SMALL APPLIANCES?"

Thursday, February 3

Dogs are the best ever

Oliver and Daisy had their annual check-ups recently. How are they?
First, Daisy is overweight. This should come as no surprise to most of you who know Daisy the Brute. She's incredibly aggressive over food, though oddly passive and gentle in taking it. The dog, no kidding, emptied a bowl of Cheerios -- and the milk -- without knocking over the bowl or spilling a drop of the milk. She's a master at stealing food at this point. And that, of course, is why the little Lhasa Apso weighs 26 pounds. The vet and I thought last month that we would try to lower Daisy's caloric intake by giving her carrots instead of treats. This is okay, because Daisy loves carrots. Yesterday's weight-check appointment though, brought some unwelcome news: Daisy had gained half a pound. How did this happen? Your guess is as good as mine. Theory: She's eating more food to compensate for the lack of treats. The next step is to find a lower-calorie food, and try to get her to lose some weight that way. It's become a matter of her health at this point, and I won't have my little shark at less than optimum health. I've already found the new food we need to get, so this weekend, the little one -- who's not little at all -- gets some lower-calorie yumminess.
Oliver though, is an entirely different story. My boy weighs exactly what he's supposed to (23 pounds), and at 10 years old, is in perfect health. As a senior, his heartworm blood test also was given the full panel of testing, to ensure that all his organs are working properly, and that he's all good. Well, the word came down today that yes, Oliver is perfect. I definitely could have told them that, but it's always nice to hear. Of course, I'm concerned about him eating the lower-calorie, weight-maintenance food and possibly losing some of the nutrients that his senior-citizen body needs, so his diet will include the senior wet food, too. This will make him very happy. Daisy though, not so much. She'll flip if she sees him getting food that she can't eat, too. So, the art of distraction will be employed.
So, my pooches are good: Oliver's perfect, and Daisy needs to lose weight. I'm putting my big girl on a diet, starting this weekend.

Wednesday, February 2

Also, my nose is a little stuffed up :(

It's time to start really digging into the move. I read through my first Houston book tonight, highlighter in hand, and now feel like I have an idea of how much there is to do there, and how-ish to get to it all. I do need to figure out the city's MetroRail though, as it sounds like the best way to get around town sometimes. To entertain, the town's aquarium, zoo and natural science museum sound pretty awesome, and I think Sydney will really enjoy those attractions.
Also, Emily and her friends came through with a couple preschool recommendations, and I think I may really like one of them. Emily is going to check it out for me next week, if schedules allow.
Also, it looks like the practice may be ready for us in June, instead of later in the summer. This works out better, of course, since I've got a bunch of plans July through the end of August. But especially because the sooner we get out there, the sooner we stop spinning our wheels here.
Also, I managed to survive my first day without a land line, and I think it went pretty well. My cell phone is close to running out of juice right now, but once I'm done chatting with Mom, it'll get all plugged in and have a nice night's sleep.
Ugh. As I write this, I hear my kiddo coughing in her bedroom. This cough is pretty brutal for her, and she's getting really frustrated with it. She actually cried to me last night because she didn't think it will ever leave. I got the same conversation, minus the tears, this afternoon. "This cough won't go away forever." I hate it. I'd take that cough from her and live with it ten times worse if I could just so she'd feel better. And it has the sounds of a cough that'll linger, too. Damn.
Also, I think I need to cut back on my hot chocolate. The extra calories that are settling somewhere in the general area of my ass are beginning to piss me off. Back to the hot tea!!

Tuesday, February 1

She's wearing a wonderful pancho

Here's my February avatar.

Also, I just watched Avatar: The Last Airbender. It makes me wonder very much about how many meanings there are of the word "avatar." I shall investigate and get back to you quickly ... ... ...

There are three meanings:
1. Hindu Mythology . the descent of a deity to the earth in an incarnate form or some manifest shape; the incarnation of a god.
2. an embodiment or personification, as of a principle, attitude, or view of life.
3. Computers . a graphical image that represents a person, as on the internet.

Okay, so every context in which I've seen the word "avatar" is a valid one. I'm feeling pretty good about that.

It's all iPhone now, baby!!

I canceled our land line this afternoon. It'll still be working tonight when I call Mom, but as of tomorrow, the land line is gone. I love a good land line, but once it's gone, and even after breaking the bundle, we'll save about $50 a month. My long distance averaged about $35 per month, and the phone service itself cost about $33 a month. I've been incredibly stubborn about the land line. In fact, I prefer it to talking on my cell phone. There's something a bit more concrete about talking through wires instead of via satellites and towers. It makes a more tangible connection, I think. I've refused, for the longest time, to do away with my land line, but with the new crunch in our finances, and the fact that we'll be a mobile household for the next six months, I decided to cave to Brian's insistence, and ditch the non-smart phones.
But really, I'm weirdly giddy about this. One less thing to deal with, and another step closer to my more relaxed and stripped-down existence before we settle in Houston. I'm excited to take down the phones tomorrow! It's weird!!