Sunday, November 02, 2003

I'm Moving

From Blogspot. I wanted a few more bells and whistles, a few more toys to play I've made the jump. Bear with me while I tinker around with the look of the new place.

Anyway, this will be the last post on this site, so please update your links - I can now be found here.

See you later!

Saturday, November 01, 2003

Sour Skittles

We had a decent number of trick-or-treaters last night. And the nice thing is that they were all decent, polite kids. In costume. In other words, they earned their candy.

I don't think teenage kids who just shuffle through the neighborhood in little gangs, holding out their king-sized pillowcases and barely making eye contact deserve any candy, personally. And they don't even say "trick or treat" half the time. Just hold out the bags.

But we didn't have any of them this year. Or last year. I think it's the neighborhood. The majority of the kids around here have manners.

Two boys, probably around 11 or 12, came to the door at one point last night...I don't even remember their costumes, I think one was dressed up in a suit and wearing a hat, and maybe the other one was something scary-ish. Anyway, I handed out the candy to them and they were just about overjoyed at what they got - sour skittles.

The top hat kid looked up, like it was Christmas, looked me in the eye and thanked me several times. It was nice. I should have given him extra, now that I think about it.

And speaking of "thank you" - before Alex went to bed, any time he heard kids at the door say thank you, he called out his own thank you from the living room.

Alex was a bat this year, by the way. Very cute. Bill took him out to a few houses near us, and Alex held his little basket and said "thank you" and "bye bye" to everyone. We didn't think to try to teach him "trick or treat" this year.

When they got home Bill gave Alex some bits of a candy bar...he's trying to get him addicted to sugar, I believe. And Alex enjoyed it. But he preferred the mashed potatoes I had reheated. So much so that he refused any more candy in favor of more mashed potatoes. This morning he preferred part of a bagel with smoked salmon and cream cheese over a pumpkin muffin and a chocolate croissant.

Of course, that could change at any point.

Gotta go - we are trying to get our basement cleaned out in preparation for the ceiling repair, the new paint on the walls, and the new carpet. I cannot wait until our basement doesn't look ugly any more.

Friday, October 31, 2003

Happy Birthday, Meredith!

Today is my sister's birthday. Last night we had dinner for her at my parents' house - Mom & Dad, Meredith & Jacques, Calvin and Natalie, Steve & Colleen & Amelia, and Alex and me. (Bill had a rehearsal.) The usual meal - Chicken Paprika, noodles, squash, broccoli, peas, rolls, and something chocolate for dessert. This year it was chocolate fondue with bananas, strawberries, pears, apples, pound cake, macaroons, and marshmallows.

Some things about my sister and me....

* My memories begin with her birth. I am with my Dad's father (Grandpa) in a parking lot outside of the hospital. (Kids weren't allowed in then to see their new siblings.) I am standing on the hood of his old, faded yellow car, blowing a police whistle and waving a small American flag. Inside the brick hospital, in one of the rooms, are my mother and my new baby sister.

* Family lore has it that when my parents brought Meredith home from the hospital, I was in the kitchen with both sets of grandparents, waiting, and when they walked in the door I cried out (with joy) "My baby sister!" I don't remember it, but they say it's true.

* I have a memory of standing near her changing table, looking up at her little bare stomach and seeing the stump of her umbilical cord there, black and strange.

* My sister and her husband, Jacques, have been married nearly 14 years.

* She and I are a daunting team against anyone at Pictionary. Ask my parents. Ask Jacques and our cousin Steve. They have lost to our near psychic abilities.

* She and I share the same sense of humor. It is not always kind. We share a love of "falling stories" - episodes in our lives when we or our friends have fallen - down stairs, mostly, or tripped - just a word or two to conjure up one of these episodes will send us both into helpless hysteria.

* She is my reality check.

* I was sometimes a mean older sister. She'd want to play and I'd tell her "one more chapter" of the book I was reading...and then go on to the next chapter and tell her "I'm almost done..."

* The enemy of my enemy is my friend: when we were in the midst of little squabbles as kids, one or the other parent would come up to our room and ask what was going on. We would clam up and answer "nothing!"

* We are friends.

* She is currently an orange belt in Karate. Don't mess with her.

* She follows her own path and always has.

* When we were little sometimes we were dressed in either identical or matching outfits.

* When we were little, our father told us that the breaker switch up in our bedroom closet would blow up the house if we touched it. We still believe that and won't go near it.

* Because of my sister, we had a succession of cats as pets. The first was Pumpkin. When we found her downstairs (where my parents had left her for the night), I told Meredith (it was her birthday) to "go upstairs and see if it's yours!" I was bossy. The cat was hers.

* Today there are, in addition to 4 people living in her house, one cat and 5 birds.

* She is a terrific gardener.

* She took piano lessons for 7 years and could play along with the piano solo in Billy Joel's "Scenes from an Italian Restaurant" when she really psyched herself up for it.

* She is a great Mom and a great Auntie. And a great sister.

* And she makes the best cinnamon toast of anyone I know.

Happy Birthday, Mere!

Thursday, October 30, 2003


I think I'm passing my queasy phase...the smell of coffee this morning is now a good thing once again....

Wednesday, October 29, 2003

12 Weeks

I am 12 weeks today, based on a due date of May 12th. If I remember right, 13 weeks is the end of the first trimester, but regardless - it's hard to believe one third of this pregnancy has already just about zipped by.

Alex stayed home today. He woke up around 3 this morning and felt very hot. Had a temp of 102.5 so I gave him some Tylenol and juice and brought him in bed w/me. He just kind of whimpered for a while and then fell asleep. Poor little guy.

Bill stayed home with him for the first part of the day and brought him to the doctor as well. Probably a virus. He had the same thing happen over the weekend, then two good days, and then apparently a new virus jumped in and took over. I came home from work early so Bill could go teach his college students tonight, and Alex seemed a lot happier. He's taking a nap right now, which is why I get to type a bit.

He is going through a hitting phase. I don't think it's a malicious thing, I think it's just a testing-the-boundaries thing. Most of the time. And he'll say "uh oh" immediately after, which is what some of the people at daycare say to mean "no" or "don't do that." So he kind of knows he's not supposed to do it...but I think he's still testing. He also tends to do it when he's heading toward being tired.

His other new thing is this - he'll stand in front of me (I'm sitting on the floor) and his expression will suddenly go very serious - and he'll fall forward at me. Arms at his sides, body straight. And of course I catch him, which is tons of fun, in his little "nothing can harm me" opinion.

He is very very ticklish at the back of the neck. Screams with laughter and wriggles half in delight and half in a weak attempt to get away. Then he'll move his head back within tickling range, a little anticipatory grin on his face....

I also think he said "I'm sorry" to me earlier. He was on the chair in the living room, standing up (which he's not supposed to do). I told him to sit down, and after a bit of grinning at me and saying "Hi" in his charming way, he gave up and sat down. And then said what sounded like "I sowwy." Which startled me - his first sentence! And I blurted out "You're sorry?" And he thought that was incredibly funny and just laughed at me.

So I don't know. I don't know.

He is full of surprises.

Tuesday, October 28, 2003

Random Facts

I thought this was an interesting exercise (thank you, Sheila), so here are as many random facts about me - unrehearsed (well, except one that I was thinking about on the drive home from work) as I can think of before the timer goes off and I have to make the gravy for the chicken I'm roasting. Here goes...

* When I was 10 I grabbed a 9 year old boy by the throat with one hand and squeezed very hard and told him to stop picking on this 8 year old boy he'd been about to beat up. (the 8 year old lived kind of near us, and my sister and I had been trying desperately to teach him self defense. he was an easy target for bullies. we failed.) The 9 year old nodded his head, his eyes and tongue kind of popping out, and I let him go.

* I used to want to be a boy. (this is probably when I was 10). Some girl I knew told me if I repeated my wish (didn't tell her what it was) over and over 10 times and then yelled it loudly the last time, it would come true in a month. It didn't.

* I don't like little yappy dogs.

* I am more comfortable in my mind than in my body.

* I have plenty of talent in various creative areas...but unfortunately I lack drive, and that's really the deciding factor, isn't it?

* I have a handful of very, very good friends. The rest come and go.

* I argue best on behalf of anyone but myself.

* When I was very young (6, maybe) I lip-synched (sp?) to the sound track of My Fair Lady (the Broadway version) in my grandparents' living room in NJ and my grandfather told me to sing out...but I refused, because I knew I didn't sound like Julie Andrews and so why even bother?

* My sister and I and my best friend Dolores and her brother "put on" a haunted house two years running when we were in ( I think) junior high, or younger. We actually caused some little children to cry.

* I once freed a starling that had its legs stuck in my parents' stockade fence. After it flew out of my hands, I started shaking uncontrollably.

* I have one sister, Meredith. She is two years younger than I am.

* I had a red plaid metal lunchbox in elementary school.

* Two of the attendants on "my side" of the wedding party were men.

* I had a perm once. Once was enough. I'm supposed to have straight hair.

* I once ate so many "thin mint" girl scout cookies that I had a sugar hangover the next morning.

* I once had two (or three) of the margaritas that my husband makes and ended up singing "The Star-Spangled Banner" on the couch in my apartment. My dear friend Ralph called right around then to tell me he was going to a dermatologist because he had a spot on his nose that wasn't going away, and he thought it might be cancerous. All I could say, in a desperate, hazy attempt at sympathy was "You have nose cancer?" He laughed hysterically.
(And he's fine, by the way.)

* Sometimes I am absolutely terrified of losing my parents. It freezes me and I well up with tears. The rest of the time I keep it at bay.

* I know with complete certainty that I could kill or die for my son.

And that's all I have time for. The timer's going off and I have gravy to make.


I'm sorry, what?

Alex went to bed husband isn't due home for another 40 minutes or so...dinner is cooking and smells wonderful...and here I am with FREE TIME on my I came in here and sat down to type...and then sat here staring vaguely off into some other, slower, dimension...totally zoning out. I'm tired. I would like to go "ni-night" too, to be honest.

But dinner would burn, the alarms would go off, and I'd have really nasty pans to clean, so never mind that option.

So here I go...trying to gather the thoughts I had earlier and shape them into something coherent....

Well, I met with the contractor this afternoon to discuss what needs to be done to get our basement back in shape after the flood we had in August. While he was here I felt my brain dissoving back into the quicksand it often becomes these days, so I felt myself nodding stupidly as he went over all this stuff - particularly the part about the money, which, of course, is most important to him. I wanted to say, at one point, "don't worry - we have plenty of money" - which we don't, not plenty like it's dripping off our clothes...but I just wanted him to stop speaking in tongues, basically.

He asked how soon we could have the basement cleaned out...and...I said by Monday. Don't ask me how that's going to happen, either. I haven't figured it out. Bill teaches late tomorrow night. He's got a rehearsal the next night, plus we're celebrating my sister's birthday that night at my Mom's house, so I'll be there, not here. Friday night is Halloween, plus Bill has a concert. That leaves the weekend. Oh, and he's got a gig of some kind on Sunday in the middle of the day.

Which would be fine except for the big heavy furniture that needs to come up from the basement and go either out by the curb (we're going to replace the sofa and recliner that got wet and are now mildly stinky. they were second-hand anyway.) or into the garage (the entertainment center and corner cabinet his father made years and years ago..and the little table and chairs. Well, okay the table and chairs aren't heavy.)

And this is a problem because I can't help him lift these big heavy things. I could, for in addition to being a great cook I am also more powerful than a locomotive and able to leap tall buildings and all that...(no, wait, that's Superman...I meant Wonder Woman...but if I spin around like that I'll get dizzy and throw up...and at the moment I'd look really scary in that costume.) But of course, heaven help anyone reading this, I digress...

The thing is - while I'm pregnant, I don't want to risk anything. Yes, when I was pregnant with Alex I was also helping move all our furniture from our little rented cottage to the house we live in now...but I have grown more cautious two years later, and besides, I didn't know I was pregnant til after we moved. Now I know. And if for some reason - any reaon - anything happened with this pregnancy after I helped move some furniture up some stairs, well, I'd be blaming myself forever, and I carry around enough random stupid guilt about stuff as it is.


I emailed our friend John to see if he's got ANY free time between now and Monday. Problem is, he works weekends, so that leaves very little free time that will overlap with Bill's free time. Same with my brother-in-law. But we'll figure something out.

Actually I should probably be downstairs now gathering up the smaller things that we can move up and stow elsewhere in the house.

But as I mentioned earlier - I'm tired. So I'll chill for now. I'll plan my attack, and I'll start the small phase of the "move" tomorrow night.

Yes, that sounds good.
Retraction of my Retraction

After some strong and much-needed verbal shaking, (thank you Beth, Sheila), I realize that there is no need for me to apologize or explain the "Fertility Goddess" title of my other blog.

They're right - I am a fertility the very least, I'm starting to look like one of those ancient stone carvings...the round, voluptuous, not-in-the-least-like-a-supermodel ones...

Friday, October 24, 2003


It has occurred to me a couple of times that the name or title of the blog that I linked to in the post below and the little subtitle under it may come across as cocky and obnoxious. Something which I know I am on occasion, but which I don't mean to be about the pregnancy.

But when I decided to create that little blog, I was, well, pretty damn happy to be pregnant again. And my husband jokes that he only has to look at me and I get pregnant...which strikes me funny, in light of the fact that I'm on the higher side of 35 and was afraid it would take me forever to become pregnant when we first started trying. Granted, I've (so far) had one successful pregnancy out of 3, and this one (#4) is sure, I can get "with child" - the question I worry more about is whether I can carry said child to term.

And, with that in mind, I suddenly thought how obnoxious my "Fertility Goddess...So Worship Me Already" thing might come across. Trust me - I am supremely grateful for my son, and I am supremely grateful for the little one I'm carrying now. I don't take them for granted at all.

And so now I think I'm sounding like a wimp, retracting my Fertility Goddess I think I'll just get off the subject before I lose all self respect.

A Little Bit of News

I've been working on a little project recently...well, actually it began as more of a collaborative effort.

But anyway...