Monday, December 31

My New Years so far

Manicure: The dark purple fingernail polish that I got in my stocking has been talking to me for a few days. Tonight, I heed the call, and now my nails are all pretty.
Garden Salsa SunChips: This is the perfect appetizer for a New Year's evening, after having eaten dinner a while ago.
Anderson Cooper and Kathy Griffin on CNN: Best part of my evening so far, by far. I've been giggling my butt off for the last two hours because Griffin is terrifically inappropriate, and Cooper is totally rolling with it. Also, they talked a bunch of smack about Psy and then were flummoxed when he showed up on their dais. Fantastic.
Chocolate chip cookie dough dip: Oliver and Daisy, who will wake for food, enjoy the dip, though their bites had no chocolate chips in them. I eat the dip with apple wedges, because that makes it healthy.
Twitter: I'm constantly watching for new tweets so I can see what the outside world is up to on this New Year's. It's a drag being cooped up inside with a sleeping baby ... and husband. I remember what it was like to go out on New Years! Maybe I'll get to do that again sometime!
Facebook: I don't think you should be able to "Happy New Year" on your status until your time zone has moved into 2013. I mean, I'm waiting until Houston's midnight. If you're going to bed, just go to bed and wait until tomorrow for that kind of thing!
Rain and weather: It's been a dreary day full of inside activities and no sunshine. It hasn't been bad, but not very exciting. Tomorrow will be more of the same. But with better football.
Almost midnight: It's 11:51 p.m. right now. Gotta go wake up my husband!!

Sunday, December 30

Paper! Paper! Paper did it!!

One of the worst places to get a paper cut is on the tip of the middle finger. I have that paper cut right now, and even though it's well on its way to healing, it is still annoying the hell out of me.
First of all, I have no idea how I got the paper cut. It could very well be from something not at all related to paper, but since the length and depth and width of the cut are consistent with a paper cut, it shall be referred to as a paper cut.
Anyway, it's on the tip of my right middle finger. This allows for multiple opportunities to bam the finger on things, and therefore split it open multiple times. This makes for slower healing, don't you know. Also, there's very little effective medicinal or bandage help you can do with a paper cut there, so it's also pretty much on its own for fighting bacteria.
But finally, after a few days of hoping you remember the paper cut but then being surprised by it every time it gets bammed, it will cease to split open. This is good. However, said paper cut's scab becomes an additional problem.
With a scab on the tip of your finger, you can't always feel things exactly right. Silly little computer things, like moving around a cursor or a mouse on a laptop, you see, gets tricky, and weird. I can't feel much where the scab is. It's like having a nerve ending mini-paralysis in that one place. Moving my mouse tonight and all day today has been a study in patience.
It took me a couple minutes to figure out why the mouse track pad felt weird. It took me longer to decide that ripping off the scab would just start the damn cycle over again. It took me no time at all to blow this entire thing up into a blog post that I'm sure makes me sound completely insane.

Friday, December 28

Yay Christmas presents!!

I got an abundance of randomly awesome Christmas presents this year:
Bright Pink Footie Pajamas, which I am wearing right now, and they are super warm. Except I feel like they could totally use a hood, since I'm discovering that the back of my neck is cool. Ollie and Daisy have no idea what to make of the owl-decorated foots of the pajamas.
Lava Lamp, with black lava in clear liquid, is bubbling away in my bedroom right now, and it's making me feel very zen. I miss having a lava lamp in my house.
iPhone Cleaning Cloth, which will come in handy, as I am tired of wiping the things on my pants and wondering why exactly that doesn't get them as clean as I'd like. Also, texting gloves.
Books, Books, Books, which is exciting because I actually got to pick a couple out during our stop in Barnes & Noble, but also, the priceless-no-matter-the-value B&N gift card. I have got to get to reading soon.
Reading Glasses, which have been ordered, so I don't have them yet, but I am looking forward to having them soon. I think I (we) chose a nice and flattering frame, and I'm hoping to get used to them relatively quickly. I freak out a little about them, and my god what if they don't work, at least once or twice a day.

Movie review: Christmas "Les Miserables"

There is a definite disadvantage when watching a movie of a beloved musical stage production that you have seen several times. It makes for unfortunate comparisons between actors and Broadway singers, and allows for disappointment.
You know that moment in Mamma Mia, when Pierce Brosnan starts to sing, and you think, Oh, that's too bad, but at least he's still pretty? Well, I had better hopes for Russell Crowe, knowing that he's had a musical career as well as his acting one, and that he spent some time preparing for his roll as Javert in Les Miserables. And I suppose he could be granted the opinion that he can hold a tune, and his voice wasn't ... unappealing. But really, Javert needs a deep and gutsy voice, and Russell Crowe just doesn't have it. I hate saying this because he really did fill out the uniform well, and looked the part of an obsessed French military man. But the singing. Oh well. At least he's still pretty.
One could say the same for Hugh Jackman though, too. He had better singing chops, to be sure, but again, not the deep, strong and heavy sound of a Broadway-caliber Jean Veljean. Also, not the physical presence of Veljean, who is supposed to be quite large, hefty and strong. Jackman would have been better served with a more Wolverine physique than how he looked in this movie. But he did well with the acting.
You know who impressed me? Anne Hathaway. She was a fantastic Fantine, and had a much better singing voice than I had thought. But Marius' friend, whose name I can't remember, also lacked for the heavy singing voice I'm used to in this show. Explain to me why they couldn't use a Les Mis stage veteran to play that part who could really sing it well. That would be because we couldn't have any real Broadway singers, as they would show the inconsistencies of the movie stars' voices.
But, like I said, I was at a disadvantage going into the movie theater to see a stage musical I love so much. Mom and I came home and listened to the Broadway recording highlights CD the next day, because that was where the music and voices really reside.
Having said all that, I did very much enjoy the movie, and did cry my eyes out at the end.

Tuesday, December 25

Two turtle doves; partridge in pear tree

So, the wi-fi in the house went kaput Sunday night. It happened, coincidentally, right after I had unplugged and re-plugged a power strip, so when the Internet was suddenly gone, I, of course, blamed myself for it entirely. So, I spent an hour or so trying to "fix" it. Then, Monday morning, I called Bob's Cable Co. to complain, and was told that yes, the Internet was out for the complex, and that tech was on its way. I have no idea how long it took him yesterday, but last night I was up too late doing other stuff, and today was too busy, so I didn't get to the Internet issue until just a bit ago.
Happily, the tech guy obviously fixed the problem, and after re-booting the modem and the router, we have Internet in the house again. Sadly, when I tried to fix the problem, I reset the router, and now our network has a boring name. I need to figure out how to change the name of our network without going through all that crazy setting up business.
Also, today was Christmas and it was awesome.

Saturday, December 22

Three French Hens

Well, I think I may be ready for Christmas. I've got all my shopping done. I've got my groceries bought. I'm ready to get to wrapping ... tomorrow. I did a fair job of making my family run around to random places today, but then still ended up going out on my own for a little bit to finish up.
And tomorrow, the holiday preparations begin for reals. I'll get some wrapping done in the morning. I'll try to organize the closet a bit so Mom can have some room in it. I'll do both those things without Sydney seeing anything she shouldn't. It'll be glorious.
I need to water my plants; vacuum the living room; get to Einstein's for bagels; do the afore-mentioned wrapping and organizing; and then, happily, head out to the airport to pick up my mommy.
I made a batch of fudge tonight, and for the first time, used butter instead of margarine. I'm interested to see if there's a taste or textural difference, but, judging by the bowl remnants that I tested ... for quality ... I'll give a probable "no" to that.

Friday, December 21

Four Calling Birds

I'm having a hard time keeping my eyes open tonight. I'm super tired, and very much looking forward to getting some sleep. Since today was Sydney's last day of school before the winter break, I can now turn off the morning alarm, which means, wonderfully, that I can sleep in tomorrow morning.
Every time I close my eyes, my head gets heavy and it wants to rest on a pillow. I'm of the thought right now that I should get to doing that.
Sleep is a good thing.

Thursday, December 20

Five Golden Rings

One Golden Ring: My ponytail was so tight today that it gave me a headache, and my hair would have looked so messed if I took it out that I lived with the headache for a ridiculous amount of time before removing said ponytail. I'm pretty sure the ringing in my head is the sound of my hair follicles going back to where they are supposed to be, and they're singing.
Two Golden Rings: My nail polish doesn't look as awesome as I was hoping, and that's made me a bit disappointed. How could it possibly disappoint with the name, Rudolph Red?
Three Golden Rings: The mall was not as crazy as I feared before lunch, but was everything I avoid after lunch. I just can't shop comfortably when there are so many people around, bumping and pushing. And you all know me, I must be comfortable when shopping.
Four Golden Rings: There was a nap this afternoon, and it included a sofa, an overweight Lhasa Apso laying across my chest, an elderly and awesome Lhasa Apso curled up between my knees, and an alarm set on the phone so I wouldn't sleep through picking my kid up at school.
And finally: In fact, I totally didn't do any cleaning today.

Wednesday, December 19

Six Geese a-Laying

Unbelievably, I am excited about hitting the mall tomorrow, a mere five days before Christmas. I've got lunch plans with Emily at the mall, and I'm pleased to say that I have a bit of a list in regards to stores to visit while I'm there. I may just spend my entire day wandering through the place. It'll be nice and relaxing, since I'll be alone in my cruising, which is paramount for my sanity this close to the holiday. Also, Nordstrom.
Other things: I've got my Rudolph Red (actual name) nail polish on my fingers, so my hands are looking festive; Sydney's written another letter for Buddy to take to Santa tonight, because she is very concerned that her request will not be fulfilled; the cleaning of the house begins in earnest tomorrow afternoon, because, you know, my mom is coming over, and my house needs to be clean; I sold Sydney's old car seat this afternoon, and I discovered that raisins, crumbs, dust and Cheerios make an interesting paste in the hidden corners of a car seat; and Google Maps is totally awesome because it can follow you along your directions and give you real-time updates to your actions on your way to places.

Tuesday, December 18

As a Lincoln, he looked weird

ITEM!: We watched Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter this evening. It was ... not as good as the book (though movies rarely are), but entertaining enough, I suppose. At this point in my pop-culture education, my knowledge about the different mythologies of vampires is pretty extensive. But I did learn something new about the legend of vampires in this film. Apparently, vampires are unable -- UNABLE -- to take the life of another vampire. How weird, right? How random would Buffy have been if Angel couldn't help with the slaying? Or Blade if he couldn't kill other vampires? Or how spineless would Lestat be if he were so immobilized? Goodness gracious, even frickin' ridiculous Edward was able to kill other sparkly vampires. I don't like this new "rule," so I shall ignore it. Shenanigans.
ITEM!: I think I'm almost done with my Christmas shopping. In fact, I only have a couple more things to finish up, and then it's nothing but wrapping, wrapping, wrapping for me. I'm not a big fan of locking myself in a room and doing the wrapping, but I will persevere. Also, I "get" to wrap my own gifts. I'm so lucky.
ITEM!: My life on CraigsList selling things has been relatively successful this holiday season. I've sold one of Sydney's larger and more irritating toys, and am selling her car seat tomorrow afternoon. The other two things listed, well, whatever. I can donate them and feel fine about that. Really. I enjoy meeting random CraigsList shoppers in Starbucks parking lots. It's my new hobby.
ITEM!: I totally spaced on Sydney's class trip to the library today. My penance is that now I have to drive to Katy to drop her books at the library and pay a late fee. Who knows what that is, probably 50 cents or something, but I know that if I don't do it tomorrow, it won't get done until her next class trip, and that's in January. You know, when the late fee could be a dollar.

Monday, December 17

Reassuring, but not

We got a letter from Sydney's school today, that basically told us about the security at the school, and how they evacuate, and how we get notified in case of an emergency, and how often they have lock-down drills, and all that.
They changed the code at the front door of the school.
All this is great, but at the end of the day, it wouldn't be enough to protect any children, should a madman with an assault rifle come calling.
They mentioned how they will not be discussing the recent school shooting with any of the children or in class. If a student asks a question, or makes a statement, the school will notify the parents to have the conversation with the child, but won't allow any in-class dialogs about it.
I'm in favor of this in a thousand ways, but mainly because I don't want her to be afraid of going to school, or worrying about this incident. The last thing she needs is to be as scared as I am.
The letter was, I'm sure, written in an effort to calm the fears of the parents. I think I would speak for most of them (us) when I say that this didn't do that. We already know the school is secure. But so was Sandy Hook Elementary.
Sometimes, this is such an awful world.

Saturday, December 15

A good day for us

I'm no less outraged today.
But I did a good job of hiding my head in the sand. I didn't want to know what the medical examiner said. I didn't want to see the pictures of the babies. I didn't want to wake up this morning thanking the universe that I was able to hug my baby, and feeling overwhelming grief for those parents in Connecticut who are no longer able to do the same.
It's still so wrong. I haven't changed my mind, either. I don't think guns have a place in our society. We're better off without them. I would add "gun-hater" to my official bio over there, but I like the positivity of the bio, and don't really want to sully it with anger.
Along those lines, I rolled with pretty much whatever Sydney wanted to do today. We went to the dinosaur museum in Sugar Land so she could spend some time in the dinosaur dig pit and we could check out the displays; we ate noodles and chicken at Pei Wei; we made pumpkin spice quick bread; she played with the computer and Legos all afternoon; and she had Tootsie Rolls with her sandwich for dinner.
I'm overcompensating for the horrors of yesterday, and my all-encompassing fear of losing my own baby rather well, don't you think?

Friday, December 14

Make the guns go away

It's official. I am officially an anti-gun, pro-banning person.
I've never been a fan of guns. I've never allowed one in my house (I said my house: Daddy had some, and Howie had a couple rifles, but as long as I've been in charge of a house, there have been no guns in it). And I'll never understand why ordinary citizens should have access to guns at all.
And don't throw that 2nd Amendment bullshit at me either, because the Founding Fathers would never have protected activity like today's as being within someone's Constitutional rights, and also, the words "well-regulated" are in the Amendment. I can't see where any guns are being well-regulated outside of the police and military (which also is up for debate, but let's stick to "John Citizen" going out and buying an automatic rifle or handgun).
I can't imagine any parent hearing news like today's, where 20 children were killed in their school, even any gun-toting parent, would think, "Oh, well, he just didn't know how to handle a gun. Or know what he was doing." Rather than thinking, "Holy shit, why does that guy have access to a gun at all?" No parent heard that news and didn't immediately wonder how safe their own child was at that moment. And no parent considered, at that moment, that just any citizen having access to buying a gun or getting a gun is a good idea.
What the fuck are these people thinking? WHY ARE THERE GUNS? We're talking about a device created and maintained for the sole purpose of killing another human being. That's not good in any way, but the sheer number of guns in the hands of ordinary citizens for the purpose of "protection" is ridiculous. I've got a news flash for those people: There will be no zombie apocalypse. The English will not attack again. The populace will not rise up against the government. There will be no coup. There is no reason for anyone other than police or military to have a weapon.
I'm down with banning guns.
It amazes me how the United States (as an entity) likes to think it's so far above the countries of the rest of the world, but how in reality, this country is so backwards about so many common sense things. How can we call ourselves a First World country when such horrors await our children at their schools? How can we sit back and let one, two or six people, in one, two or six incidents, decide that their cause is so strong that they should kill innocent people, and then give them the access to a gun to carry out their whim? How can we justify this country's thirst for blood and carnage, but at the same time look down our noses at other countries with human rights issues we describe as inhumane? Is it less inhumane to give killers access to guns and let them take our children? Is it less humane to choose one man's 2nd Amendment "right" over a child's right to go to school in safety? Over a parent's right to watch their baby grow up? Over society's right to not have its people murdering each other?
I'm disgusted. Guns are the problem. If people didn't have access to them, these things wouldn't happen. Name me one other weapon that can kill 26 people in three minutes. Nothing but a gun can do that. If guns were banned, we'd be safer. Our kids would be safer.

Wednesday, December 12

Good stuff for a Wednesday

ITEM!: It's the best when a phone call can put you in a good mood. Chatting with Mom or with Brian's mom is always a good thing, and my Tuesday evening calls with Andrea are sometimes the best part of my week, but every once in a while, a phone call comes along that puts an extra-happy spring in my step. Today's call was from my dear friend Julia, who I haven't spoken to in a long time. Monday was her birthday, so I called and left her a message, wishing her a happy birthday, telling her how much I missed her, and that she should be sure to call me back so we can catch up. I am embarrassed to tell you how long it's been since Julia and I chatted. So when she called this afternoon, I was ridiculously giddy. It was a relatively short conversation (20 minutes), as she was running errands and picking up Aidan, but it was the exact balm I needed for my soul today.
And I guess my call on Monday made her happy, too. Yay college roommates!!
ITEM!: I did some preliminary Christmas shopping today. I bought some cards. Like I said, "preliminary." But I've got some ideas, and I cashed in our jar of coins today, too, so I've got some spending money to start with. I think stocking stuffers at Target on Friday will be my first big Christmas shopping task.
ITEM!: I'm getting into the swing of not watching a whole lot of television again! That's always so exciting for me! I've got about four books to read, and Brian and I want to burn through some Netflix movies, so these next few weeks should be good for entertainment ... (she says, as the books remain on the shelf, and they decided against a movie tonight to play a video game instead...)

Tuesday, December 11

My nose is wounded internally

I think, given the choice between a Christmas tree that doesn't smell hardly at all, and a Christmas tree that someone has sprayed with fake Christmas tree room freshener, I'd pick the unscented tree.
This is because the room freshener actually smells more like Old Man Forest Aftershave than actual tree scent, and because 30 spritzes of any scent is enough to make a person gag.
Brian has, once again, hit upon one of the worst solutions to a somewhat non-existent problem. Know that at this moment, I am still smelling Forest Aftershave throughout my home, and he sprayed it about three hours ago. I did not agree to this, of course, and he did it while I was kissing Sydney goodnight, so as the smell spread throughout the house, my first reaction was more of an, "Ew!! What DID you do?!?!"
As for my own solution to this secondary predicament, I told him that the room freshener-slash-counterfeit tree scent may "be lost" the next time he goes looking for it. I mean that, too. With every fiber of my being, that spray will not be around tomorrow.
This place smells awful. Seriously. I yearn for the days of no-scent tree.

Monday, December 10

So, how's the weather?

"Hey, baby, it's cold outside ..."
Finally, we're having some winter weather here in Houston. It's been incredibly warm lately, with highs in the 80s, which isn't good for anyone when they're trying to get into the winter spirit. Today though, the high was in the 50s. Tomorrow morning, I should freeze my butt off when I take my dogs downstairs for their morning pee.
It's nice to have a reason to put on a jacket and jeans. Also, my Uggs are being worn. All good things.
Sydney's got the heater going in her room to keep it nice and warm, and I'm sure I'll be in good company in bed tonight with Oliver and Daisy, who sleep super close and touching me throughout the night when it's cold.
This week continues with the colder weather, but it looks like it warms up a bit again next weekend.
I miss Boston so much sometimes. A change in weather for a whole season would be a nice thing.

Saturday, December 8

My Day in Bullet Points

  • Our Christmas tree fell over tonight. First, know that a tree makes noise when it falls in Houston, so it must when in a forest. Also, there were about eight ornament fatalities, one slightly hysterical child, two adults laughing, one wet tree skirt, a few minutes of panic, and one very funny photo.
  • I'm agreeing that I need the reading glasses. I've had a hard time focusing on too many things the last few days to ignore this any longer. Monday, I suppose, I'll head back to the eye doctor's and order my glasses.
  • Sydney got to visit with Santa! Her school sponsored a Santa visit again this year, and held it during the day, which was different. We arrived to an almost-empty parking lot, and no line to see the big man. Syd was very excited to have Santa all to herself, and told him exactly what she told me she would tell him.
  • All my Christmas cards are addressed! All I need are some stamps, and they'll be ready to mail first thing Monday morning. I love that I've gotten so efficient about my cards over the last few years. it makes for a less-stressful mid-December when I know that the cards are already mailed.
  • I didn't get through my magazines today, but I'm hoping for some success with that tomorrow. Also, my recipes and food lists for Christmas-time. And some laundry. And bills. And the grocery store. And Target.
  • But the day may also be a complete wash, since my kid went to be early tonight with a fever. If she's still sick tomorrow, I'll be home with her. Or I may put Brian in charge for a bit while I run some errands. Big day, Sunday.

Friday, December 7

Friday night ITEM!s

ITEM!: I love that on Friday night, as I tuck my kid in and tell her I love her, I can say, "Tomorrow is Saturday; you know that that means!" And she says, "You get to sleep in!" It would be better if she actually adhered to that, but I suppose it's the little victories. I mean, she knows I get to sleep in, but won't really let me.
ITEM!: There is a monstrous pile of magazines and catalogs on the floor of my bedroom. I keep telling myself that I'll power through them in an hour, turning them into fodder for recycling, but instead, every day, they keep multiplying. We'll make that a High Priority for the weekend.
ITEM!: I like it when my dogs remind me how totally chill they are, and how good they can be. Of course, I know that they're good dogs. And I know that they're well behaved. But when we bring home a friend of Sydney's, and there's no barking, no growling, and no undue activity, it makes me very happy. Daisy, my barker, did very little noise making. Oliver, my anti-player, even let Jaclyn give him a hug and sit next to him on the sofa. Daisy played fetch, and even gave out some kisses. Oliver begged for a treat as only he can, and both charmed Jaclyn. My kids rock.
ITEM!: I am very pleased that it's not even 10:30 p.m. yet, and I'm tired and almost ready for bed. My dogs are cozy on the bed, and I can think of nothing better than cuddling in with them right now.

Thursday, December 6

Do it right, or not at all

Christmas tree lights have a ... way.
There's a right way, and a wrong way. In my head, it's a very specific way.
You see, there is a multi-colored base. I prefer the multiple colors all over. The lights also need to be wrapped around the limbs and branches, in order to have all kinds of light all over the tree. I hate seeing cords, and I hate having spaces in the tree with no lights. So, my base needs to be all-encompassing of the tree.
Over the last few years, this has been added to by Brian, who decided that we should have red bulb lights on the tree as well. These additional lights look pretty awesome, and their awesomeness is because Brian puts them on in his random Brian-ish way.
For whatever reason, Brian decided to rebel against the "way" and require some solid strings of lights instead of an all multi-color base. Uncharacteristically, I allowed myself to be gainsaid by him and a six-year-old. So, we had a few solid color strings on my tree tonight. It was decided by said husband and child that it looked "funky."
Until I was a single string short of finishing, and Brian turned off the house lights to check out the effect. He didn't like the purple string. He didn't like the "too bright" LED strings. He pouted. I, of course, pointed out that this unhappiness is what happens when you mess with the way of the Christmas lights. And then I got super annoyed because the three strings were going to have to be redone, and ... I'm too insane to let anyone else put the lights on the tree.

Wednesday, December 5

Really? Really, Texas?

Arizona is a warm cocoon -- a cozy little place that strives to lessen your worries and make your life simpler. Did you know that? I didn't really know that, until today.
But apparently, as a state, Arizona is among the highest echelon of fuzzy places for, of all things, glass coverage in auto insurance. I discovered this morning that Arizona is one of only a few states in the country that requires full coverage on glass in regards to auto insurance. You get a ding, you call the guys to fill it. You get a bad crack, you call the guys to replace the window, and you don't get charged anything for it. It's all part of your insurance. Because of Arizona.
Now. In Texas, this is not the case. In Texas, if you get a ding, you may be able to get someone to fill it for free. If you get a crack, well, don't forget that your comprehensive coverage starts at $500, but the windshield should be less than that.
Wait. What? I have to pay for my new windshield? It's not covered?
I was, for several minutes, flummoxed by this turn of events. I made the guy explain it to me again. I started to get that twitchy feeling in my stomach when I know that something is going to be a lot more irritating than I thought. And I waited, patiently, for "Jimmy" to call me back with an estimate.
In Arizona, the windshield replacement is free. In California, the replacement would cost me about $100. In Texas, the windshield will cost $255, including taxes and labor. And they can put me on the schedule even this afternoon.
Thank you, but I'll be hanging out with my cracked windshield for a little bit longer. I've been driving with it like that for three months, I can last until after the beginning of next year. Because there is no way I'm going to let Texas take anything away from my holidays.
I prefer auto insurance in Arizona.

Tuesday, December 4

And so it begins ...

So, this is how it looks as I'm getting closer to 40 years old.
I do, in fact, need reading glasses. It was not my imagination; I do have blurring issues when things are up close. I also have a slight distance prescription, but since it's not bothering me, we don't need to do anything about it right now.
I'm a healthy woman, but if I decide to have another baby, it's a 5 percent chance of getting pregnant, and there's a one in 40 or 50 chance that the baby will have some kind of chromosomal issue. The age of my eggs make me a high-risk pregnancy.
I would like to have a physical. Like an old-days, check everything is going well, kind of physical.
Also, mosquito bites are even more itchy and gross, and I've got this weird wrinkle on my neck when I'm brushing my teeth.
Someone please, what the hell is going on with my body? This is ridiculous.

I'll be getting my glasses soon.
We'll probably get a puppy instead of have another baby. Sydney wants fish. I'm thinking a betta.
I'll call my gynecologist's office and ask about an internist for a physical.
Mosquitoes shouldn't be a problem right now because it's December, but this is Houston, so they are.
If I can't see the wrinkle, it must not be there.

Monday, December 3

To glasses, or not to glasses

I've got my first eye exam in a hundred years tomorrow morning. I've noticed over the last few weeks that my vision gets a little blurry when I'm on my phone, or reading, or putting polish on my nails. Whenever I need to focus on something up close, the tends to get a little fuzzy around the edges. So, to figure out what's going on, and whether we can conclusively blame my iPhone for this, I am off to the eye center to get checked out.
If need be, I will be one of those women who wears her reading glasses on a string of pearls around her neck. And I think they shall be red (the glasses, not the pearls).
Honestly, I think I'm lucky that I haven't needed glasses before now (I assume tomorrow's exam will show that I do need them). But, you know, whatever. Reading glasses.

Sunday, December 2

So much sneaking around

  • New rule: Sydney is no longer allowed to snack on something while at the computer. There is a dreadful amount of jello residue on my little mouse pad here, and it's infuriating. I'll clean it up tomorrow, but the new rule is put into effect (affect?) immediately.
  • Also tonight, my maternally deceptive duties are doubled, as I will play both Santa's elf and tooth fairy. Yes, Sydney lost her first tooth today, and she is beyond exited for the tooth fairy to visit tonight. I've got the $2 bill, and I think she'll be happy with that. My instinct, of course, is to go overboard and give her some toys and such, too, but I'm resisting, and will stick with the "funny" money for the tooth.
  • Monday mornings are my favorite.

Saturday, December 1

Yay December!

I prefer December for the most festive month of the year. I've already got all my Christmas decorations up, I've ordered my Christmas cards, and I'm chomping at the bit to get some shopping done. (Also, I'm inexplicably caught up in this random episode of CSI: Miami that's on right now.)
I do love December.
I shall ignore though, that December is at the end of the year, and that I need to start considering a brand new year in less than a month. I'm too tired to get anxious for 2013. So I say, but you know I'll get all eager, anxious and anticipatory for it. But I relish that I've got a full month before I'm faced with that.
I'm obsessed with planning Christmas right now.

Wednesday, November 28

Blah, blah, fingernail polish

I'm bored with my blog topics of late. Blah, blah, tired. Blah, blah, holidays. Blah, blah, weather. It's like the blog has become my place for idle polite conversation. "So, how are things? Been busy? Lovely weather we're having, isn't it?"
Brian bought $40 worth of Powerball tickets today. I have grand plans for all that money, so be prepared for tomorrow's post, which may or may not be headlined with, "Suck it, bitches! I'm paying off my bills and moving back to California!!" It's all good, you know. Wouldn't that just be so awesome? I think it would make me very happy.
Decorating my house for Christmas takes me about seven hours. I didn't time myself today, and I'm glad I didn't, because that would have been weird. No, I started decorating after I dropped Sydney at school, and was just about done when it was time to pick her up. All that's missing is the smell of chocolate chip cookies, and this would be the happiest house ever.

Tuesday, November 27

How R U? No. How are you?

ITEM!: My daughter has, unbeknownst to her for now, joined the Apple community. With the newness of her knowing how to spell and type, I've been wanting her to have a texting function on her iPod. I couldn't decide on an app I liked, so have been unsatisfied. For an unrelated issue, I was visiting the Apple store this morning, and the Genius there told me that as long as she's in a wi-fi zone, and has her own Apple ID, Sydney can text from her iPod to any other iPhone. It took me a ridiculous amount of time to decide on an e-mail address for the child, so I could set up her Apple ID, so I could set up her texting function. But right now, it's working beautifully, and all is well. Tomorrow, Sydney learns how to text!
ITEM!: Also tomorrow, Christmas comes to Houston, and the house gets Christmas-ified. I'm very excited. But it may not go as seamlessly as I'd like, since I've already pulled out two Christmas pieces and changed where they go from last year's placement. I may very well be spending my entire day decorating, even though I know where most everything will go.
ITEM!: I declare shenanigans on the Christmas Junior Mints. They may have some red mintiness in some, but the "green" is disappointing. It's more like a seafoam green, which is sad, and that makes me yearn for a real Christmas-y green mint interior.
ITEM!: I went to Barnes & Noble today, and I walked out with only one book. I'm very proud of myself for showing such restraint. I did make note of two other books to purchase on the Nook, so my to-be-read pile is growing. I'm looking forward to there being less new television on for a few weeks so I can get my reading in again.

Monday, November 26

Bring on the good stuff

It's almost Christmastime, Y'ALL!!
I took down all the Thanksgiving decorations today, while listening to Christmas music. I spent some time on Christmas lists for the family. I was thisclose to donning a Santa hat to get through the day.
I also bought some awesome holiday lights for the living room. I think I'm getting into the holiday spirit. But for certain, I'm getting excited about doing Christmas for my kid.
She asked Brian and I yesterday if Santa Claus was real.
"Well, why did that one song say, 'you say there's no such thing as Santa?' if there is a Santa? Was the song lying?"
"Yes, baby. The song was just being silly about a Grandma getting run over by Santa. Do you think Grandma would get run over by Santa?"
"Well, then, the song is silly, and of course, there is really a Santa Claus."
Now, having dodged that particular Christmas-killing disaster, I can focus on the holiday for reals.
Yay Santa!!

Sunday, November 25

Must have sleep

I like a good night's sleep. It's refreshing.
Of course, tonight's sleep may be more exhaustion-induced than anything, and I may not wake up as refreshed as I'd like, but it'll be good nonetheless. It's been five nights since I've slept with my little heaters in my own bed, and I'm looking forward to it tonight. Oliver and Daisy are fast asleep already: Ollie is running fast in his dream; and Daisy is all stretched out and breathing heavy.
Sydney probably took a while to fall asleep, but she was out at a decent time, so I know that she'll be in good shape tomorrow morning. Brian's been napping here and there on the sofa, so I'm hoping he gets a decent sleep. He will, because he's as happy to be home as I am.
As for me, the moment I'm done with this post, I'll be putting the computer away and climbing into bed for night nights. I wasn't fortunate enough to sleep on the drive to the airport this morning, nor was I able to lay down on the sofa as soon as we got home and sleep for an hour. This mom has been going and going since 5 a.m. Arizona time this morning. And I am totally ready for bed.

Tuesday, November 20

I think I might be ready

ITEM!: It's so weirdly quiet when the dogs are gone. We took Oliver and Daisy to the dog hotel tonight, and they should be snug as bugs right now, comfortable in their suite, and cozy in their blankets. Still, it's too quiet here, and I know I won't be able to sleep very well without them in bed with me. However, I also know that my morning tomorrow will go smoothly because I won't have to mess with them.
ITEM!: We are getting up butt early, about 4 a.m., to catch our butt-early flight. On the up side, we arrive into Phoenix early in the morning, and should be in Tucson in time for lunch. We're super excited to see the family!
ITEM!: Sydney is officially ready for a booster seat in the car. We decided to travel with one to Arizona instead of a full car seat (yay!), and are eager to try out the new safety device. Sydney though, has decided that we need a booster in every car, and is not subtle about her desires. She got in the car this morning and sighed, "Well, this seat is still here. It hasn't gone away yet..." I suppose we'll get rid of our car seats next week and pick up another booster. She's growing up, Y'ALL.
ITEM!: It's liberating to leave the laptop at home. Of course, I'm still bringing the iPad, but leaving the computer isn't something I do often. I'm excited also because the computer is so heavy, and the iPad holds all my magazines. I may or may not blog very much over the holiday weekend. I'll try my best, but I promise nothing.

Monday, November 19

I prefer dark colors in autumn

I let Sydney choose the color for my fingernails, and I'm unhappy with what she chose. She picked a really pretty pink -- in fact, it's the same pink that she's got on her left hand and right foot -- but I'm just not in a pink mood. She was so excited to share the color that I couldn't possibly say no. I tried to talk her into picking a red instead tonight, but she is practicing her guilt trip-ablity by saying things like, "Well, if you really want to..." and then "I really do like that pink, but if you'd rather have a red, that's okay..." So, as you can imagine, I'm wearing that really pretty pink, and I'll pretend to love it.

Sunday, November 18

Warning: depressing post ahead

I think one of the most heartbreaking things I've had to deal with in a while was Sydney tonight realizing that one day Oliver won't be with us anymore, and me then having to comfort her over what will surely be one of the worst days in my life. Weirdly, and I'm sure it's a phase kids go through, she's asking a lot of questions about dying lately. Like, when she's 100, will Brian and I still be alive? Or when will we die? Or, horrifyingly, will I cry if she died? Or what will we do if Brian dies? I mean, for me, as someone who is terrified of death, having to answer all those questions is akin to torture of the most heinous kind.
But I refuse to lie to her, especially now that she's old enough to remember the things I tell her, so when she asked if Oliver will ever die, and if he'll live to be 100 years old, I was gently honest about it. And having had that conversation, she moved over on the sofa to hug Ollie, and then, next thing I know, huge, huge tears are rolling down her cheeks, and she's sobbing about Oliver eventually dying. Of course, I consoled, and explained that it isn't anything we need to get upset over now; we still have several years with Ollie, and that we should be hugging and loving our boy instead of crying about something that won't happen for a long time. She rolled with that, but still was upset, and gave him sad eyes and longing looks all night.
Having settled her down though, I was struck with the knowledge that at some point, I'll have to deal with the loss of my first baby by supporting my second and third babies through their emotional crises (as well as my husband's) first, and then my own crippling sadness about it second. That seems incredibly unfair to me, as I know that on that day, and probably many, many days after, I'll just want to curl up in the fetal position on my bed and cry.

Saturday, November 17

An apple juice a day

Sometimes, nothing makes me happier than a bottle of Nantucket Nectars pressed apple juice. Tonight, because we went to Chipotle for dinner and they sell Nantucket Nectars drinks there, I am happy. I just finished it, and it was delicious. I always tell Sydney that when I was pregnant with her, I had to have some apple juice every morning. I'd get to the office, go straight to the cafeteria, and buy something to eat and a bottle of my apple juice. It made her very happy, and thereby made my mommy body very happy. Now, the juice is still delicious, but it also makes me all warm inside where my heart is because I remember so well how happy I was with my baby growing inside me. Sydney, interestingly, does not like apple juice.

Friday, November 16

Tonight, I catch up on my ZZZZsssss

I wish I could adequately explain, in beautifully descriptive words, how frickin' tired I am. I can't remember the last time I actually had to function through a day with only three hours of sleep the night before. Tonight, once I'm done with this blog post, I'm off to bed. No hanging out with the television, and no loitering on my phone. I managed to sneak a 20-minute doze in this afternoon but that's the extent of my sleep for Thursday night.
The reason for my lack of sleep, the midnight showing of Breaking Dawn: Part 2, was worth it, as I thoroughly enjoyed a night out with a friend. As for the theater experience itself, it was not as entertaining or insane or loud as I had thought. We arrived at the theater a few minutes after 10 p.m.; they allowed us into our movie at 10:30 p.m., and we were able to find good seats, and then sit comfortably for 90 minutes until the movie started. Of course, the place was full, but it wasn't bursting. I mean, the seats on each side of Marlo and I, between us and the next group of movie watchers, were empty. And the forward bunch of seats were relatively empty. The theater had four or five screens showing the movie.
It was, for a midnight show of a teenybopper romance movie, a pleasant evening. We had a drink at Cheesecake, got some coffee at Starbucks, and chilled out and chatted. The movie itself was good, too, offering a cute twist to the book, surprising us all.
And then I came home, and had to stare at an alarm clock that would buzz in my ear just a bit more than three hours later. Tonight, I'm all over turning off my alarm.

Wednesday, November 14

Sparkly vampires at midnight

ITEM!: This morning was Sydney's school's Thanksgiving feast and program, and it was pretty awesome. The class did a little Pilgrim play, displayed their manners by seating all the moms and dads and leading us from activity to activity, and shared their artistic and scholarly talents. Also, we had lunch, which included turkey, mashed potatoes, green beans and applesauce, and a pumpkin pie that the kids made for dessert. I love school programs, they're so fun.
ITEM!: My new friend, Marlo, also was at the feast today, and we even got to sit next to each other. We happily discussed the kids, of course, but also mentioned meeting for coffee and hanging out. She said something about the new Twilight movie, and asked if I was going to see it. I told her that I would definitely see the movie at some point, but that I'd probably have to wait until next week. Then tonight, she texted me to see if I'd go to the movie with her tomorrow night! Brian, I think, was as excited for me to have plans with a friend as I, and I replied back that yes, I'd totally enjoy going to the movie. This means I'll be hobnobbing with the teenagers tomorrow night. No doubt, an incredibly entertaining blog post will follow.
ITEM!: After the program this morning, Sydney and her classmates were given the choice of either staying at school, or they could leave and spend the rest of their day with moms or dads, if they were able. My daughter, when given the choice, decided that hanging out with me would be more fun, and suddenly my quiet afternoon was nonexistent. What could I possibly do to make Sydney's afternoon awesome? How about a present-finding mission to Toys R Us? The plan: Wander through every aisle and look for things she wants for Christmas, and take pictures of those things so we don't forget. She rocked the assignment, and I have a bunch of good ideas.
ITEM!: Also, The Mindy Project is randomly brilliant.

Monday, November 12

Too cute to be a thief? Nope

I got proof today that Daisy has been stealing food from Oliver's bowl when I'm not around. This afternoon, I came home from picking up Sydney to discover Daisy laying on a pillow, hesitant to come greet me. This, as most dog owners can attest, is a bad sign. My first action was to check for poop. Finding none, I sat on the floor and gave her a kiss on the nose, the best way to tell if she'd thrown up anywhere, as the breath is a tell-tale sign. But no, not vomit; instead it was dog food I smelled on her. To confirm, I checked and saw that Oliver's bowl was empty.
Irrational feelings alert!: Why was the dog not taking this diet as seriously as I?
Suddenly, I realize why she's gained some weight rather than lost it over the last couple months. And the signs were there, I guess, but apparently they weren't NEON enough for me before today.
Happily, I can beat her at this game. Background: Brian bought Oliver a new dry food when Sydney and I were in California, and my little man really, really likes it. It's not the normal stuff though, so we've treated it as a secondary meal more than regular food.
But the fact that he eats it as soon as I put it in his bowl was a giant light bulb for me today. And our way to thwart Daisy was discovered: Feed Oliver this food, a serving at a time, and he'll eat everything in his bowl, leaving nothing for Daisy to finish throughout the day or night. And just as suddenly, she starts to lose weight again.
I'm laughing at myself quite a bit tonight, for crediting Daisy with the self-restraint I thought she had for staying away from Oliver's bowl. Why I sometimes forget that, at any given time, she's a dog, not a canine-ly person, amazes me. And that she's an overweight dog especially, because of course she'll be eating the extra food out on the floor in a bowl. (You see, even typing it out, I laugh at myself again.) So, the dog diet begins again tomorrow, and this time, I will win.

Sunday, November 11

Food, glorious food!

I love it when I'm all, "let's go get some lunch," and Brian's all, "whatever; I'm not hungry for whatever you're going to make me eat," and then I choose a place and he likes it. Today, we lunched at a place that's new to us, Bullritos, which is right down the street. I chose it, and we had a delicious lunch. I love that I picked a winner. What I hate though, is that it's taken us a year to try this place, as it's been here, in the same parking lot as Smashburger and our "Ninja" Noodles, ever since we moved in.
Also, they have fantastic chips. And cheese dip for the chips. Sydney had a chicken taco, which she ordered all by herself; Brian had crunchy beef tacos; and I had pork tamales. They have free soft-serve ice cream for dessert. It has become, needless to say, a new regular stop on our lunch/dinner rotation.

Saturday, November 10

21 years is a long time!

How many of you continue to remember random anniversaries?
For the first 10 years of our lives together, November 10 has been our "anniversary," the first night Brian kissed me, and for all intents and purposes, we became a couple.
Now, after we got married, I told Brian that he could forget the Nov. 10 day as long as he remembered our wedding anniversary (he does). But I always write that Nov. 10 milestone on the calendar, and I always tell him when the day comes along. Today, of course, he rolled his eyes at me, mainly because I also told him that he had to make out with me tonight, even with my coughing, "for old time's sake."

Friday, November 9

Only good dreams from now on

Do you believe in the magic of a dreamcatcher? I do. My grandmother bought one for me at an arts festival a hundred years ago. For the longest time, I kept it above my bed, and always believed that it did protect me from bad dreams. [ASIDE: Native American dreamcatchers are told to have the power to catch and hold onto bad dreams, keeping your sleep restful and happy. In the morning, the bad dreams that are trapped in the catcher burn up in the sunshine.] When our housing became more ... fluid ... after moving out of the house in Scottsdale, my dreamcatcher was stashed in my underbed storage bin for safety. After well over a year, I had pretty much forgotten about it.
But I'm happy to say that tonight the dreamcatcher has a new home, though it's not over my bed. Sydney had a bad dream last night, in which something tried to eat her head, if I heard it right. She asked me this morning why she had a bad dream, and how come her brain thought of it. And all I could think of, besides answering her question with enough cleverness to foil any additional questions, was my perfect dreamcatcher ... under my bed ... and how it could help and give her peaceful sleep.
It was a real treat to be able to show her my catcher, and explain how it works. And to tell her that her great-grandmother bought it for me, and that now she gets it in her room, was a genuine joy, and I felt very thankful to Grandma for it. We discussed the catcher as she snuggled into bed tonight, and she was very happy to have it. I just hope that it works as well for her as it always did for me.

Thursday, November 8

Cat noise + Daisy noise > bunny noise

Well, come to find out that I can't, actually can't, sleep with my bedroom windows open. I've tried for the last couple nights, and I've come across a very specific problem. It begins, innocently enough, in a community with a relatively high population of outdoor cats at night. About 5 o'clock every morning, the cats decide to bitch and moan at each other in a manner that eventually devolves into a shouting match. This shouting match wakes my Daisy. As a, let's say "efficient and effective" guard dog, Daisy hears everything, and in her own way, comments on it. Her comments tend to be in the form of a long, loud growl that reverberates across the bed. She'll growl as long as she can on one breath, then take another breath, and then growl again. Occasionally, she'll throw in an "erf." As you can imagine, at 5 a.m., this is very annoying. And the only way to stop it is to shut the window, effectively cutting off the cat noises. Sadly, this also cuts off the cool breeze and fresh air.
I remember with incredible fondness my house in Scottsdale, in a quiet neighborhood full of old people with quiet dogs and cats, and my ability to keep my windows open all night. And the only noises were the sounds of baby bunnies rooting around in the bushes outside.

Wednesday, November 7

Yay flowers!!

No thoughts.
Too tired.
Time for bed.
No post, but a fun picture.

Election night ITEM!'s

ITEM!: It's not as hard to not brag about last night's results as I though it would be. Except to say that I was embarrassed for some of the overreactions I saw on Facebook last night, the melodrama on television was as I expected. (I've read that sentence like four times and I can't tell if it doesn't make any sense. Let's move on.) I am incredibly happy with the results from last night's presidential contest. All is well in my world, and I'm excited to see what can be done over these next four years with a president who isn't worried about being re-elected.
ITEM!: Huzzah, and YAY FOR OUR LADY PARTS!! I've never felt like my rights as a woman were in more jeopardy as I have in this election. I am appalled that so many gains were made by the Republican platform to reduce my decision-making rights about my own body. And the attack on Planned Parenthood was led by people who simply don't care about women. That's a dangerous sentiment in a country that is currently boasting a pretty substantial actively voting female contingent. I'm proud of the ladies, and the men who support them, for making their voices heard yesterday.
ITEM!: The same-sex marriage platform made tremendous strides last night, by being approved in three states, and by its discrimination being defeated in one. The fact that California continues to be behind other states in approving same-sex marriage is an incredible personal embarrassment for me. I always had such pride in my state, which is why I'm still registered to vote in it, but this lack of equality for a segment of a population is horrifying. I continue to vote in California because I want to be a part of the approval of a same-sex initiative when it finally passes. I'm hoping that will happen in my lifetime.
ITEM!: Donald Trump is a complete whackjob, and he needs to be muzzled. The dude went on a Twitter tirade last night, calling for a revolution against the election results and the Electoral College. An institution that I like to remind Republicans they celebrated in 2000, when Bush won the electoral vote and Gore won the popular vote. Trump needs to lose his platform (*cough* NBC), and just throttle his crazy.
ITEM!: And just so we know that life is going to go back to what is was before all this crazy election madness, Christina Aguilera's Braided Hair is trending at the top on Yahoo! this morning.

Monday, November 5

Fight for your right to vote

Tomorrow is Election Day. I've already cast my ballot.
I'm amazed and appalled by the political machinations going on.
Did you know that there are people actually putting out signs that say the election is on Nov. 8?!?!
Did you know that there are people standing outside polling places trying to intimidate and scare people from voting?!?!
Did you know that there are people maliciously directing other people to the wrong location for voting?!?!
Did you know that there are politicians that have actively throttled voting hours and places so that less people are able to vote?!?!
The subterfuge and intimidation that some people are stooping to in order to suppress voter turnout is appalling and frightening. That there are factions of our population that are so misguided in their zealotry that they think their vote is so much more important than another person's, and so much so that they'll actively pursue taking away someone else's right to vote is beyond unconscionable.
Everyone deserves the right to cast a ballot and vote for the person they think will be represent their ideals in office. Everyone should be able to stand in line at their polling place and be free of intimidation and vitriol. People of this country need to be able to vote.
I think early voting is a brilliant idea. Why can't there be an "Election Week," giving everyone in the country plenty of time to vote and have their voice be heard?
Also, I'm embarrassed by the actions of my fellow citizens this election cycle, and I've lost faith in almost every walk of life involved in politics. All I can do is fight for the issues that are important to me.
I want the dudes that want to take away my choices, and my daughter's choices, to go away.
Also, I want people to be free to marry who they want.

Sunday, November 4

A year is a long time, but quickly gone

The next few days are going to be somewhat bitter in their tone, as we are coming up on the one-year anniversary of arriving in Houston. In fact, one year ago today was our last night in Arizona before hopping in the cars and heading farther east.
Oh, that we could have that day to do over again. (Oh, to have the last 20 months to do over again!!) I remember it vividly: us climbing in our cars in Sierra Vista, and making that fateful right turn onto the freeway, instead of the left turn that would have taken us back to Phoenix.
I honestly can not believe that we've been out of Arizona -- as residents -- for an entire year. I can't believe that we're still here, and that the office still hasn't opened. (It's supposed to open "this month.") I'm bitter that we've wasted a year here. I'm bitter that I'm so far away with no money to make regular trips back home. I'm bitter that we've spun our wheels and gone farther into debt for this "opportunity," which has, in fact, yielded nothing of benefit.
As I said, posts that are "bitter in their tone."

Saturday, November 3

Clocks!! Change them tonight!!

I'm positive that I've posted about Daylight Savings Time before. (As a reminder, it's tonight that we need to set back our clocks by an hour.) But I found this little article on the origins of Daylight Savings Time, and some of the information was new to me.

It’s time to ‘fall back’
By Claudine Zap | The Lookout – Fri, Nov 2, 2012
 It's that time of the year to turn the clock back an hour: Starting at 2 a.m. on Nov. 4, daylight saving time ends and clocks go back one hour.
What is the history of daylight saving time?
The idea was first floated in 1784 by one Benjamin Franklin. While serving as U.S. minister to France, he wrote the essay "An Economical Project for Diminishing the Cost of Light."
The idea failed to see the light of day until 100 years later, when the U.S. railroads instituted a standardized time for their train schedules.
That time change was imposed nationally during the first World War to conserve energy, but it was repealed after the war ended. It became the national time again during World War II.
After that, it was a free-for-all for states deciding if they wanted it, and when it would start and end. Congress finally enacted the Uniform Time Act in 1966, which decreed that if a state chose to opt in to daylight saving, it had to be at the same time as everyone else.
Why did daylight saving time change?
In 2005, the Energy Policy Act instituted a change to daylight saving time, extending it by four weeks.
As of 2007, daylight saving time runs from the second Sunday of March through the first Sunday of November. The reasoning behind the change: a savings of an estimated 10,000 barrels of oil a day through reduced use of power.
It is not at all certain that the change saves any energy at all. On the bright side, extended hours of daylight are certainly pleasant.
Who has opted out?
While most of the U.S. observes daylight saving time, Hawaii, Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands and American Samoa don't. Most of Arizona opts out as well, except for the Navajo Nation.
Why does the time change happen at 2 a.m.?
It's the time that is considered to be least disruptive, both for business and to people worried about being an hour late to church services or brunch dates on Sunday.
According to the blog
Life's Little Mysteries, moving the clock back an hour from 2 a.m. to 1 a.m. moves back only one hour in time, not back to the day before, which would only add to the confusion.

My thoughts on that: 1. I love that there was a state "free for all," when they all ran amok with the idea of Daylight Savings Time. 2. Why is Arizona so stubborn? Is it all the old people refusing to change their clocks twice a year? I mean, really. Get with the program, you and your crazy desert landscape. 3. Suddenly, the 2 a.m. change is making more sense to me than ever before. 4. Okay. I'm on board with this. Let's do it.

[Editor's note: I have a desk clock with the kind of wings in this picture. It's in the bin with my "work desk" things. I, right now, very much want that clock in my house somewhere. I actually have a lot of cool stuff in that box that I might want in my house now. I need to find that box and go through it. Project for next week!]

Friday, November 2

It's getting autumnal

I put away all the Halloween decorations today, and my goodness, I love how uncluttered my house looks right now! Of course, there's still a stack of orange and black storage bins that need to be taken downstairs to the storage, but once that's done (hopefully tomorrow), all will be normal in my home. You know, until Monday, when I put out all the turkeys for Thanksgiving.
The removal of the decorations did take most of my day, though. I did shift the way I packed them this year. NEUROSES ALERT: I finally have enough bins, and stuff, to be able to contain a room or two in a bin, and label it such. Master bedroom, bathroom, laundry and Sydney's bathroom; office and Sydney's bedroom; entry way and living room (part 1); kitchen and living room (part 2); and the all-encompassing "Misc." box. It's all good, and I look forward to unpacking and decorating next year, as it should go pretty smoothly. (I did my Christmas decorations like that last year, and I'm eager to see how quickly the decorating will go with a nice, anal-retentive system leading the way.)
I think I may go to bed early tonight. I feel like I'm practicing for my 40s when I realize that 10 p.m. is late enough on a Friday, but then I remember that we're all still kinda sick, and that I've given myself the weekend to get all our shit together for the month. And that means feeling better for all of us. So, an early night is what it is: a stepping stone towards better health in the days ahead.
Also, the leaves are starting to change on a couple trees around here.

Thursday, November 1

Aren't *you* thankful for flip flops?

Ah, November. It's typically one of my favorite months. But there's something happening on Facebook that is making my November decidedly cheesy. The challenge is that people post a different thing every day during the month that they are thankful for. So far, the three that I've read are reliably sweet and predictable, and somewhat blah: all about the love of family. All I could think of to be thankful for today were my flip flops, because my feet still hurt from last night.
My challenge to myself everyday for the month is to be thankful for something silly, and not fall into the trap of preaching about how much I love my family and friends. Y'ALL know who you are; I don't need to tell you. And that will tax my creativity as well, since I imagine my thankfulness will ebb a bit around the 20th of the month due to a lack of inspiration.
This month's avatar is an homage to The Walking Dead. I dig me some zombies.

Wednesday, October 31

12: Hours I wish I could sleep tonight

And also, Halloween is done!
My kiddo was a rock-star Catwoman, and I was pleased to be representing a fancy witch at tonight's festivities. Of course, "fancy witch" means fancy shoes rather than Toms, and I immediately regretted that decision. Three hours later, I really regretted it. I couldn't wait to get in the car and get those shoes off ... and they're the comfortable ones! Still, in future, I shall remember that a Halloween function with my kid is not "fancy" shoe required.

Halloween by the numbers
4: Bags of candy, including Twix, 3 Musketeers, Reese's Miniature Peanut Butter Cups, and Snickers.
14: Days Sydney wore her costume before the big day.
3: Colds in the household throughout the month.
6: Hours to decorate for Halloween.
4: Hours to remove Halloween, I hope. I'll know on Friday.
1: Bags of candy corn.
1: Times Sydney fell asleep on the living room floor in her costume. Tonight.

By the way, I'm totally ready for Halloween to be over. I'm eager to put away my decorations on Friday so I can put out my awesome turkeys.

Tuesday, October 30

Halloween's Eve

I'm on the hunt for a Halloween costume. Nothing like waiting until the last minute, right? Did you know that Halloween is, like, tomorrow? I keep thinking that I have a few more days to get my stuff together for the holiday. But then, well, I'm wrong about that.
I think it's because the holiday is on a Wednesday. I mean, really. I feel like we've been celebrating Halloween for weeks and weeks already. Now it's finally here, and I'm practically ignoring it.
But still, I hope we're all feeling better tomorrow so we can enjoy it.

Monday, October 29

My house needs wellness

NyQuil Cough may be the drug of my dreams tonight. I've caught Sydney's cough with a vengeance, and it's one of those awful dry coughs that kinda rattles in your throat and gives nothing but headaches. My husband, who sometimes can be a rock star, went out and got me some cough medicine to get me through the night. And that it was a NyQuil, cough medicine hybrid is beyond even my highest expectations. Of course, I haven't taken any yet. It would do no good to pass out in a happy, drugged sleep while my computer is on my lap, or while I'm checking all the doors and windows. Still, it's just a matter of time right now. I've got about 10 minutes until my self-imposed sleepy time arrives, and I'm looking forward to it.

Sunday, October 28

Birthday Girl's big day

My baby, who is not really a "baby" anymore, turned six today. We had a lovely day down at Pleasure Pier in Galveston, and enjoyed an afternoon of fun and frivolity, as well as a delicious lunch at Bubba Gump Shrimp Co. (where I chose poorly, and should have just had the fried shrimp I love so much). We stopped at Ben & Jerry's for some ice cream on our way off the island.
We were told this evening that this was "the best birthday ever," and I'm going to cling to that because I'm still having issues about the lack of birthday party. But we did have a pile of presents waiting for her when we got home, and I did have a dinosaur birthday cake, too.
The downside, of course, is the cold, or colds, that we are all dealing with. Coughing has become a constant in the house, and it's only a matter of tick tocks before all the tissue boxes start getting gutted. Thankfully, I still had some nighttime cold and cough medicine for Sydney, but I'll have to hunt for something for Brian and I tonight. (I did have some DayQuil for today.)
So, it's 10 p.m. right now, and I'm finishing up here so I can go to bed and get a good night's sleep. Brian's already snoring, and Sydney is curled up in her bed, too. Just what we need: colds aplenty.