Saturday, December 28, 2013

Arctic Blast

It's so freaking cold here! But lots of fun. Sledding, live music, good friends...

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Preparing for the freeze

The kiddo is very excited about our upcoming trip to Minneapolis. He thinks the snow suits are great for playing ninja, which they are. Hopefully they'll also be great for keeping us alive in 0 degree weather.

Christmas was a blast. With just the tree of us around, we were able to create some new traditions, like dim sum and a movie.

I hope everyone enjoyed their holidays and that you continue to enjoy your winter breaks and such. Let's make this next week the best last week of 2013 ever!

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Auto Awesome Indeed

It may not be awesome to go 6 days without blogging (for no good reason), but these gifs are pretty dang awesome! Clearly, I've been far too busy having fun with no time in the world to write a post about how much fun I'm having. WRITE a post? Oh, please. That's so 8 months ago. I'll let Google + SHOW you how much fun I've been having, not blogging. Exclamation mark!

Look at THIS love connection! Siempre Verde with Turkey Sandwich

Fancy dinner at The Van's

Hola! My salad has a cherry on top!

Leopard Class, kicking some vinyl ass.

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Brain Bling

I went to the dentist last week for my bi-annual check up. In between lectures about flossing and crown replacement, they took some xrays. One was a panoramic, camera-circles-your-head-for-30-seconds kind of xray, nothing out of the ordinary. Until...later on, the dentist was going over the xray with me, pointing out the fractured post of an old root canal (yikes), and she asked what was up with the "flowery tattoo thing" on the scan up above my sinuses. Check it out (and don't judge me for having so many fillings. I like candy.)! It must be some kind of something that was put there to hold my skull in place after my craniotomy! Unless of course it's some sort of government tracking device so the CIA can read my thoughts. And why wouldn't they? I have some pretty amazing thoughts. They mostly go like this: "mmmmmmmm salty caramel." Either way, it was a surprise to me, to say the least--that whole craniotomy period of time is a bit fuzzy--and I can't stop looking at it. It's hypnotic, but in a good way. It's sort of calming and mantra-y.

Monday, December 16, 2013

Kempo Master

He's not waxing on or painting a fence yet, but he has memorized some crazy amount of positions and combinations and will be eligable to test for a yellow belt in February.

Did you hear my jaw hit the ground just then?

Kid's got skills, that does not surprise me. It's the thought of him being able to focus and pay attention long enough--TO ANYTHING--that blows me away. Our three month experiment seems to have proven successful, as far as I'm concerned. On to more classes! Hooray fir kempo!

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Nothing much

I am pooped. I'm exhausted and emotionally running on fumes. I need to think of a good way to refresh myself, other than sleep--which, of course, is what I crave. Sleep and chocolate.

How about you? How do you hit the reset button on your soul? What is your emotional equivalent to a breath of fresh air? Please don't say exercise or vegetables.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Feeling OK

I'm starting to feel better than I have in a few weeks. The dust is settling. I can breathe a bit better, and I'm starting to think about ways to fix things in my life that feel like they aren't functioning properly. Trying to, anyways. I've gotten hooked on a TV show on Netflix called Scandal, and the main character is a fixer, a professional problem solver (but I like her better in this). The other day on the way to work, I thought about a problem I was having--a long distance friendship that had been suffering from neglect--and instead of feeling complainy and sorry for myself, I fixed it. I sent my friend an email to sort of let them know I was still there and making sure they were, too. Maybe not fixed completely, but definitely a step in the right direction.

So I guess what I'm trying to say is things are looking up. Today.

Saturday, December 07, 2013

One more rumination over my status in life

I've got to say, I really appreciate everyone's support over the last few days. My posts have been more raw than usual, and I've shared a side of the pain and fear that I feel, a part of my life that I'm usually trying to camouflage. Snark and perceived fearlessness will only get you so far; sometimes, you just need to cry and scream and hit things and write mean and ugly words on a blog for everyone to read. And honestly, the candid nature of these last few posts has felt REALLY  REALLY GOOD.

Of course, I wouldn't be me without also feeling guilty. Here, I'll use a list to count some of the wonderful and factual things that I have in my life that so many other people do not have, therefore causing me to feel guilty about having any complaints at all.

Some of the Wonderful and Factual Things That I Have in My Life that So Many Other People Do Not Have

1. Two healthy, living, nearby parents.

2. A healthy and committed marriage.

3. A healthy and perfect six year old son.

4. Full and complete use of my arms, legs, mouth, and brain-- a variety of things that most GBM survivors I know do not have.

5. A great job that I love and look forward to every day.

6. A warm home and plentiful pets.

I worry that the kind of person who can have this list and still complain about anything in their life is fundamentally broken, and, frankly, reprehensible. I know it's who I am; it's part of my personality and character to feel bad about feeling bad, but I do get nervous that I'll never inherently allow myself to enjoy the bounty that is my life, and that I'm doomed to always gravitate back to the cancer, every four months, as the primary definition of who I've become, in spite of the list of wonders above.

Now, I promise to do my best to return to our regular programing--although it's immeasurably comforting to know I can be as honest I might need to occasionally be here.

Friday, December 06, 2013

Sitting at UCSF

After every MRI, I meet with two sets of Neuro-oncologists, one at Stanford where I receive my standard ontological care and one at UCSF where I participated in a few trials during my treatment. Today I am at UCSF, finishing up my week of cancer check-ins. Hopefully, this will serve as some sort of mental closure to this particularly gruesome (emotionally speaking) MRI cycle. You win some, you loose some, and while I've physiologically won the grand bonus prize with another clean MRI, my emotional score this quarter was far below par and not what many of expect of me.

I appreciate the kind and thoughtful comments, the hugs from those I see and the stress relieving help that I get from my family. I have a caring and compassionate husband who tries his hardest, and an abundance of positive energy running toward me in the form of a six year old boy. I have all of this, and then some. And sometimes, it's just not enough. Sometimes, in spite if all the goodness that surrounds me, I feel encased in sadness, loss and gloom.

Please don't be afraid for me. Don't worry or feel that you need to be on eggshells around me. The way I feel right now is a natural part of a life-long grieving process that I have come to accept as a part of my life. The MRIs, the anxiety and emotional response serve as a reminder of how my life has changed. Forever. And there's absolutely nothing that I can do about it. I am thankful for my health and continued stability, but I am simultaneously enraged that something like brain cancer came along and changed my life irrevocably, without any sort or warning or negotiation or compensation. I'm not blind, I'm not stupid--I know I am doing incredibly well, much, much better than most people with Glioblastoma Multiforme IV. And I am grateful for that truth. But I am perfectly within my rights to feel robbed of the full, plump, shining life of NORMALCY that I had until September 2009.

So don't freak out when I write posts like this. It's part of my process and it will help me in the long run.

Wednesday, December 04, 2013

Last MRI of 2013

My neuro oncologist is starting to sound like a broken record. "Your scan looks great. No change or tumor regrowth. We expect you to live a long life. See you in four months."

You may now commence with the appropriate post-MRI celebrations. It takes me a while to shake off the pre-MRI anxiety, and it takes me even longer to figure out how to be happy about those words. "We expect you to live a long life." A long life is good, but a long life of regularly scheduled anxiety and unexpected bouts of depression is hard to take sometimes. And it turns out that I am totally one to look a gift horse right in the mouth. This gift I've been given, this gift of not succumbing to the brain cancer, of not dying in the 18-24 months that is statistically more likely than living even the four years that I have since my diagnosis, this gift is sometimes a horse with very bad teeth, one that needs a Costco size tube of Crest toothpaste and a dentist with a magic wand in the form of a giant, never-ending bottle of Ativan.

It's not that I'm not thankful for what I have. I really, truly am. Sometimes, it is so hard to see past the glaring absence of the parts of my life that will always be missing--things like piece of mind and normalcy. Yes, I get to keep my life and I get to keep on living it, but it's broken. I'm broken. And I don't know how to fix myself right now.

I wish I could celebrate with you today. I wish I could simply say to myself, well that was nice. Everything is exactly how it should be. But I feel scattered and lost and afraid and confused today, and all of those things put together add up to angry and sad. 

Monday, December 02, 2013

Still here, silently judging

Don't mistake my silence this past week for a lack of blog fodder. I have plenty to say, I'm just trying extremely hard to push out the jive and bring in the love. It's tough these days, my heart is so dang full of jive. I'm not going to get into it, but here's a top five list of the few things saving me from giving into my rage and anger right now.

Top Five List of Things Saving Me From Giving In To My Rage and Anger Right Now

1. Selective over-played hit songs on the radio.

2. The zero percent existence of dog pee on my carpet. More on that later.

3. My six year old son in a blazer and tie. Every chance he gets.

4. Waiting for results that will come on Wednesday from my Sunday morning MRI.

5. Before bedtime, the kiddo suggested we "initiate cuddle sequence."

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Thanks A Lot

Top Five Things I Am Thankful For

1. My brother is taking the kiddo to Children's Faryland tomorrow.

2. There's a four-day weekend just around the bend.

3. Costco pumpkin pie.

4. A big, comfy bed with a warm, soft duvet.

5. Spotify. When it works.

Monday, November 25, 2013

Know When to Fold 'Em

Know when to walk away. Know when to run.

It's one thing to know WHEN, it's another thing to know HOW. Letting go--of anger, a grudge, regret, whatever--is a skill I do not have. I've never had it, and I doubt that I ever will. There are many things in my life that I have every right to be angry about, or to be sad about, or to hold a grudge against, and I perform that job expertly. Now if someone could just send me the Cliff Notes on letting go and doing the right thing even when you really really really don't want to...that would be very helpful.

Some say that mindfulness meditation will teach me how to let go of all of the shit that's gunking up my emotional pipes. Other say a cleanse of the body works as a cleanse of the soul. There are those that would suggest that I drown my anger and sadness in liquor. They are probably all partially right.

I know that right now is one of those time where I need to lay my cards face down on the table, stand up, and haul ass out of there. Guess I better go put my running shoes on.

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Zombie is the New Black

The kiddo has moved on from the youthful simplicity of tablet games like Angry Birds and Where's My Water, and left me way behind in the technological dust. Plants vs. Zombies is the game du jour and I am lost, lost, lost. Luckily, Max seems to get the basic strategy and appears to have schooled my boy in the ways of pea shooters and walnuts, so at least he can play on his own. But this is one obsessive habit that I will have to pass on. From what I can tell (not much), you need to defend your home from the constantly attacking cartoon zombies by using a variety of vegetables and plants with various levels of zombie-killing skills. And there's something about sunflowers. All I know is that the kid gets pretty frustrated when he wants me to play with him and I clearly don't get it.

Me: "Why don't you use that guy? He looks like he could stop a zombie invasion."

Him: "Seriously Mommy? You hafta put the freeze pods down first. The zombies will just eat those."

Me: "Put more sunflowers. They have smiley faces."

Him: (eyes rolling) "Jeeze Mommy, I already have five of those and that's more than enough. I need more shooters."

Me: "..."

Him: "Are you even going to play?"

Me: "..."

Him: "Isn't this the coolest game ever?"

Now I know how my mom felt when I would get so pissed at her if she got the name of my My Little Pony wrong. "No, THAT is Starburst! THIS is Moonstone! Seriously!"

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Ant Rant

Pretty much all of my allotted blogging time for this evening has been usurped by ants. In the time it took me to spray the line of tiny horribleness with Raid, clean the cat food/water area they had invaded, clean up the Raid, replenish the cat fixins, and then repeat the whole process because it turns out they were coming in from two places, I could have written a very nice blog post. Hell, I could have written a weeks worth of very nice blog posts. But instead you get an angry and tired blog post, and with that, I bid you goodnight.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Better than a Butterball

This time of year--well, most times of year--when people think turkey, they think roasted, basted, and filled with stuffing.

Some people, the ones with excellent taste in food, think thinly sliced, peppered or honey roasted, layered on a dutch crunch roll with plenty of mayo.

I also think of Turkey Sandwich, but mine doesn't have mayo on it (usually), because mine is a 55 pound shepherd mix who likes to put her whole head in my hand and loves to give kisses.

Turkey Sandwich is an amazing friend and wonderful member of our family, and I am extremely thankful that she is my dog.

And someday, I hope she learns to drop the damn ball so I can throw it again.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Birthday Waffle: The Secret Ingredient is Tears

An outtake reel from the kiddo's birthday breakfast, in which he was shot by one of his parents with the Nerf gun he had just received as his gift. Which parent would do such a thing? Does it really matter? I wouldn't dream of being petty or putting the blame on just one parent--Max and I, we parent as a TEAM.

But it wasn't me.

Initial impact.

Oh, the agony!

The face of sad.

Monday, November 18, 2013

Grey Clouds Rolling Over the Hills

Can't get this song out. Of. My. Head.

And now you can't, either.
I'm unsure about whether it makes me feel sad or hopeful. I guess it makes me feel soapful.

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Hunka Hunka Burnin' Love

I've had some cats in my time, but these girls take the cake. Elvis the Girl (aka Fat Elvis, aka The Chunker) is the first cat I've ever had who shows her belly--WILLINGLY--and not with the intent to attack your arm and slice open the fleshy part, either (I'm looking at you, Milhouse). She just wants to roll and purr and get some belly rubbins. She is rad.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Too Tired to Type

It was a busy day at the shop. I didn't sleep all that well last night either, and these two things led to the creation of the following list.

List of Ways I Misspelled My Own Name at Work Today

1. Deborha

2. Debirah

3. Debrah

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

A Very Very Very Fine House

During a unit at school regarding homes, this happened:

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Rubber Band Mayhem

It would appear that rubber band jewelry is this generation's friendship bracelet. It doesn't have the DMC beauty of the bracelets of my youth, and you probably can't tie one end to your toe to use as an anchor (genius!), but kept my kid quiet and entertained at the restaurant tonight. So its got that going for it.

Monday, November 11, 2013

Kitchen Science

We're all loving up on the kiddo's birthday presents these days. This weekend, there were plaster molds, numerous volcanoes, and baking soda & vinegar rocket blasters!

There's nothing like science to bring out the big-eyed kid in all of us. SCIENCE!

Next up on the kitchen science list: making rock candy! Again, I say SCIENCE!

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Fall is Upon Us

You can tell that's it's autumn because I'm wearing rust-colored corduroy pants and a hearty brown sweater. Also, the maples in our backyard look like this:

Nature is my all-time favorite fashion designer!

Thursday, November 07, 2013

Destined to Fail

How could post number 1001 ever live up to the hype of its predecessor, post number 1000? It couldn't, that's how. In fact, it won't even try. Here, watch some cute kittens instead:

That's Elvis the Girl on the left, and US Ronald Reagan on the right.

Wednesday, November 06, 2013

That's like 27 in blog years

You are currently reading the Extra Super Fantastic blog post number 1000. I know, right? For reals this time! Kind of nutty! Granted, some of those posts were very short. Some were less short, one might even say long.  Many were about music. Most of the early ones contain broken links or missing photos (hey, pobody's nerfect). But there were reports from Babyville! Posts about my dogs! And oh, so many lists of things!

Happy one thousandth blog post to me--and big ups to those of you who have supported me on this journey. It's been beyond therapeutic for me, and I gather that it's been somewhat pleasant at times for you alls as well. May it continue to be as such for many more years...until computers become obsolete and we all have special chips implanted in our brains and there's no need for blogging because we can all read each other's minds...hrrrrrmmmmmm.

Tuesday, November 05, 2013

Astute Observation

Says the kiddo: "You know mommy, let me tell you something about Legos. They're making the instructions a bit harder these days."

His awesome friends got him a ton of Lego sets for his birthday, and he's been systematically starting (and in some cases, finishing) each set. ON. HIS. OWN. I'm proud, duh, but really excited because it means I have to spend way less time on the floor which I am far too old to be doing comfortably. But, I get to spend just enough time examining his progress to see awesome displays of Legotry.

Angry Wolverine:

Even angrier Wolverine:

Monday, November 04, 2013

The Party That Enveloped My Entire Weekend

Man, throwing a birthday party for a six year old is almost as exhausting as giving birth to the kid himself all those many (many many many) years ago. Every year we do it, and every year we turn to each other and say "NEVER. AGAIN." And then we see our happy kid, his happy friends, everyone covered in chocolate and various remnents of fun...

See you next year!

Saturday, November 02, 2013

Sweet Kitty Saturday

I love my kitty girls and I LOVE Google instant awesome motion!

Friday, November 01, 2013


After discovering last weekend that the kiddo's Halloween costume had disappeared into thin air, we were able to get a new (and significantly better) costume this week. Behold, Army Guy, also known as Mr. Camouflage:

He did a great job not getting kidnapped, and enjoyed his bounty until it was time to turn the bulk of it over to the Halloween Fairy. Don't look at me like that, it's completely legitimate for a parent to reappropriate their child's Halloween candy in exchange for a toy.

Some candy was set aside, as is our tradition, for his day after Halloween birthday waffle. This here is one happy six-year-old enjoying his triple Kit-Kat birthday waffle. Happy Birthday, Mr. Man! 

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Hooray for Food Coloring!

The kiddo and I are making technicolor cupcakes for his class birthday celebration on Friday. No boring old chocolate or yellow cake for MY kid, heck no. Instead, let's spend 2 + hours stirring and mixing and portioning.

We turned this...

...into this...

...and then that into these...

And when they cool, they will be topped with this:

It was a great tie-in to the color-themed unit he's being doing at school recently. They even did a performance of Roy G. Biv at an assembly last week! Kid at school + They Might Be Giants = Happy Mommy.

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Counting Down to Six

On September 29th, we made a paper chain to count down the days until Samson's 6th birthday. There were 34 links on that chain. Now there are 3.

To the boy, each link brings him closer to gift boxes filled with Nerf guns and Lego sets, cupcakes and strangers at a restaurant singing Happy Birthday to him at the table as he gulps down a milkshake. To me, each link brings him closer to growing hair in his armpits, learning to drive, his first kiss and college applications. 

I am so glad that while he is still 5, we had the foresight to establish an understanding that when he gets married, his wife will live in a tree house in the backyard.

His idea.

That's my boy.

Monday, October 28, 2013

Hello, I Must Be Going

Clearly, somebody either spiked my drink I've been asleep for a very long time, or there's some sort of time-space-mess going on. All I know is that I have FIVE DAYS before the kiddo's birthday party, and I am...well, here's a brief list of how I am:

1. underprepared.

2. overwhelmed.

3. too tired for this crap.

4. wasting my time blogging when I should be filling rocket ship-themed goodie bags.

5. astonished that this tiny little 6 pound, 14 ounce, Halloween-candy-induced explosion is about to turn 6 years old.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

The Shame

Holy crap, did I ever jump the gun in that last post! My 999 posts included 9 drafts, so I really only have (including this post) 991 posts. Not that anyone is counting. EXCEPT FOR ME. I AM COUNTING. So please forgive that totally characteristic move and save your excitement and cheers for the REAL 1,000th post which I estimate will be sometime in the next couple of weeks. Not blogging on Fridays and Saturdays works well for me--I really need at least two nights a week where I can fall asleep in a drunken stupor--and having a regular brain-type-task that I can complete each night before a work day really helps me fool my coworkers into thinking I've actually got my shit together. And all of that is just a long-winded way of saying that the 1,000th post is just around the corner. Be patient.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

My elementary school teachers are collectively turning in their graves! And retirement communities!

So I'm composing a post for tomorrow's big fancy ONE THOUSANDTH BLOG POST and looking through the past 9 years of entries and HOLY SHIT do I need an editor! Typos. Typos everywhere you look. Misspellings, words missing, it's a total disaster. I think it's gotten better recently, ever since a certain someone (MAX) pointed out how much I need to re-read my posts before I hurriedly hit the Publish button. So thanks, I guess, to Max for being an insensitive (but absolutely right) pain in the ass, and maybe he'll volunteer to go back through the last 998 posts with me to correct this horribleness.

And I had totally forgotten about the Great Server Crash of 2006 when I lost a great many of my pictures and such. Not to mention 9 + years of out-of-date links. It's hard to celebrate the longevity and meaningfulness of the blog when things are in such a state of disarray.

Don't worry--I'll be in a much better mood tomorrow night. 1,000 posts! Hooray!

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Buttered popcorn and baby chicks are going straight to hell

Huh. I knew there had to be a reason I've never liked bananas, construction vehicles, daffodils, or yield signs.

Great job on your homework, kiddo! To save us both the headache, I'm not going to bring up submarines. Or this awesome cover of the Coldplay original.

Monday, October 21, 2013

When Life Gives You Lemons, Make Goofy Faces

When I was looking for the picture of Ozzy and me swimming that I posted yesterday, I found a number of pictures of me with super goofball expressions on my face. Initially, I thought it was just due to how I react to posing for a snap shot--I've never been good at holding still to smile. Which way am I supposed to turn? How much am I supposed to suck in my gut? Do I look constipated when I suck my gut in this much? Then I realized that most of the dingus-face pictures during the time period I was looking at were selfies. I was actually documenting my own ridiculous facial expressions, and it's obvious to me now that I was officially trying to hide my own sadness and anger FROM MYSELF.

The time period in question--as if it's not fucking obvious--are those three years or so between late 2009 when I was I diagnosed with terminal brain cancer and late 2012 when I finally realized that, huh, I was still alive. These photos would make it seem that the only face I could really show myself was one that was above the fear, immune from the anger, not drown by sadness. No deer in the headlights here, only a survivor that laughs in the face of danger, ha! I know me, and perhaps I do laugh in the face of danger, but not until I've cried, yelled, panicked, and cried some more in, at and around the face of danger.

No tumor can penetrate my snark.

Or maybe I was just mad about this stupid haircut?

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Waterless Dog Lake

I have all that I ever wanted right here at my feet, mere minutes from my doorstep. A lovely and manageable dog-friendly hike, complete with a lake (not really a lake, a big, water-filled reservoir of sorts with a dog-launching dock and lots of room to throw sticks and balls) safely situated away from the path and the road. Now, the only thing I'm missing: dogs that will go into the water.

When we lived in Oregon, it was nothing but rivers and lakes and any number of swim days for Ozzy and Nanna. Moving back here after college changed our water dog ways for good. For years, I had to either drive miles and miles away to find fresh water to swim in--which was painful, considering we lived right next to the San Francisco Bay, but the bay water is just too yucky to deal with--or we could hit the coast and dip in the Pacific. The ocean is fine and good, but also really heavy on the off-leash tickets.

When I first found Waterdog Lake, it served as an awesome place to hike, even with Samson's stroller. But the lake part was super gross and unkempt, very smelly and swampy. Now, years later, it's re-done by local volunteers, and chock full of happy, wet, tired dogs: labs, retrievers, and mutts galore, the way nature intended.

And then there are Turkey Sandwich and Little Fizz, running up and down along the shore, barking and whining and refusing the great gift of aquatic freedom. Stupid dogs.

Swimming with Ozzy at Lake Shasta in 2011. Even at the ripe old age of 13 (that's 72 in dog years) he loved jumping from the houseboat into the lake with me. GOOD DOG.

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Drunken Blog Haiku

Dear Blog. I want to.
But there were too many drinks!
Alas, I cannot.

Some Bulleit rye, then some wine.
No, tonight is only sleep.
Barely 8 pm.

Lesson learned tonight?
Blog first, then time to imbibe.
Five more syllables.

More important though:
Such good times with my neighbor.
She's also my friend!

One more thought tonight:
I am happy for it all.
Every part of it.

Another thing though:
Did I mention yay?

Wednesday, October 16, 2013


She's gone missing again. SOMEBODY (Max) let SOMEBODY ELSE (Samson) take her to school AGAIN on Monday. The kiddo claims to have searched high and low, but can't find her. Three nights back and she's already lost. NOT COOL.

Funny thing is that nobody but me seems to care. I know she's not Original Nanna, but she's the longest running Nanna we've had so far. She's been the most permanent fixture in my life as a parent (other than the child, ahem). It's hard to experience the emotional highs and lows associated with losing, then finding, then losing a treasured object that represents a bushel of treasured memories. The tactile characteristics of Old Nanna are so different from that of New Nanna, it's hard for me to think of them as the "same."


Milford, NY August 2010

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Self Portrait

This guy has mad talent. I know that if got all of my favorite Samson artwork tattooed on my body I would look ridiculous, but sometimes it's awfully hard to hold back.

I also know that every mom thinks her kid's drawings are exceptional, and we're all right. When the squishy little flesh pod that lived in your belly for 9 months can create a something like this, it's more than an affirmation that you're doing your job right. I can't even find the words to describe the kind of pride I feel. I'm proud of my own ability to make a person, to teach him how to smile, and to foster that smile no matter what life throws at us. And man, life sure has a mean breaking ball.

Monday, October 14, 2013


My new office has many fine and useful things, Such as:

>A Chickadee, which is great for cutting many layers of ticking.

>A powerful and aptly named iron:

>A random toaster, with...look closely...A POP-TART SETTING.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Wine or Whine?

After carpentry class, our neighbors/classmates came over for dinner--second week in a row, and hopefully a long lasting dinner date. The boys play (our neighbors are twins the same age as the kiddo, two wonderful boys we've known for more than four years now), and neighbor mom and I cook and drink wine. Lots 'o wine. Enough wine that I don't think I'll be writing all that much of a blog tonight. Instead, I'm just going to lay here and listen to the Sharks do some damage in Vancouver.

Also, check out this awesome link that my mom--YES MY MOM--shared on Facebook earlier this week. Can't choose a favorite, but it's probably the lighters. They're saying "Yay! Wheeee!"

Wednesday, October 09, 2013

Another Cool Thing About My New Job

We listen to a lot of Folk Alley. There's nothing like blugrass, ukeles, and hymms to get a body moving. Stories of love lost, the goverment trying to take away our farms, and all the ways in which she makes him happy--these songs are good for my soul. There's usually lots of mentions of trees, dewdrops, trains, whiskey, things that make me happy in general. And good songs of how he done her wrong and how lonely his life is without her there to make him smile.

And when I need a dose of reality I can go to the front of the shop and usually NPR is on the radio there.

Tuesday, October 08, 2013

Nanna Update

Breaking news: old Nanna has been located. OK, not so terribly breaking, as I learned this last night. But I am currently working on a black ops scenario to swap out New Nanna for Old Nanna, and relocating the clone factory to another, taller region, one where the prying eyes of 46 inch tall kids will never discover the truth.

Great times in history with Old Nanna: Israel, June 2010

Monday, October 07, 2013

New Nanna

It would appear that Nanna is gone. She wasn't at school where Samson left her on Friday--not in the classroom, not in the lost and found bin, not in the office, and not in the far field where he last remembers seeing her. She wasn't at the preschool, nor was she at the teen and community centers, all adjacent to the school. After 6 years, we all had to say goodbye to Nanna.

OK, it's not the first time we've lost her. If I'm going to be completely honest, she's not even the original Nanna. She was actually Nanna 2, or maybe even Nanna 3...I've lost count. The important thing is that she is a giraffe lovey, and the kiddo is fast asleep with her current incarnation--and fully aware of the reality of the situation. He happened upon my hidden stash of Nannas a few months ago, and has had no problem moving right along to the replacement lovely. Can't say I blame him, she is MUCH cleaner and MUCH less full of crud and holes than her predecessor. In fact, she's the spitting image of her great, great (great?) grandmother, Original Nanna:

A gift from one of my New York cousins, she was one of many baby lovies/stuffies/blankets we received when we had the boy, and she was the one that became THE ONE. Fascinating tidbit: her first name was Didee (can't remember why), and her name was changed to Nanna after my precious Nannabelle dog passed away in 2009. The kiddo changed her name all on his own--even at the tender age of 18 months he was a sweet and caring soul, and knew that we were loosing a very special dog

But I digress. New Nanna is warm and comfy in boy-o's arms, and hopefully, she is totally unaware that she is not the first of her kind to do so. It's not as bad as the Hank & Dean Venture situation, but it would probably mess with her stuffed little mind if she had any comprehension of what was happening...

Sunday, October 06, 2013

It Begins

Because my child's activity schedule isn't fully enough--soccer, carpentry, art-math, after school sports-in-general...that's all?!--he has now begun martial arts. Yes, uniforms (aka more laundry) and organized hitting (hrmmm) are now a regular weekend activity for my little thug in training. I strategically chose a dojo that's next door yo a fro yo place--the best way to tame the physical beast I'm creating is with sugary snacks, obviously. 

Thursday, October 03, 2013

Minus One Tooth

Seriously, my kid sounds like Cindy Brady.

I guess the tooth fairy better go hit up the ATM. 

Wednesday, October 02, 2013


I am far too pooped to blog anything tonight. I will say, however, that I cut a ton of lovely fabric today and expanded my growing knowledge of flanges and welts. Awesome!

I leave you with a tiny song and a tiny dog.

Decision Makers from josh cagan on Vimeo.

Tuesday, October 01, 2013

The Lion

This was hanging outside of the kiddo's classroom yesterday, along with a dozen other drawings of lions, drawn by the other kids in his 1st grade class. Please note that in my boy's drawing, the lion has a cape. And some sort of crown. WHICH IS AWESOME. Obviously.

Monday, September 30, 2013

They're coming right for us!

Mommy deer and her two babies were hanging out on the front terrace this evening when the boy and I got home from school, work, doggie day care and Five Guys tonight. It took her a few minutes, but mommy deer finally hauled ass down the stairs and through the Halloween decorations (that's a a glow-in-the-dark skeleton and a a severed hand hanging from that tree, FYI). Baby deers one and two followed; all the while Fizzy and Turkey Sandwich barked up a storm in their car crate in the back of the Subaru. Poor girls, tormented by the mean ol' deer.

That orange blob behind mommy deer is the top one of the awesome pumpkins that we got at the pumpkin farm in Half Moon Bay yesterday. We spent the afternoon with a good friend from school--climbing, pumpkin rearranging, solving a giant corn stalk maze. Much running around in piles of hay ensued. 

Hey! That's a lot of hay!

Sunday, September 29, 2013

Bumper Crop

I picked me two of the finest specimens at the pumpkin patch!

Two solid hours of running through a corn stalk maze, climbing over walls of haystacks, and picking the perfect pumpkins. I know one kiddo (and one mommy) who will be sleeping very well tonight. 

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Smells Like Old

I spent a good part of the day working with some particularly delicate velvet. Beautiful and luxurious, in deep, chocolaty tones, it reminded me of my old cat, Milhouse (the one on top). Then, in the afternoon, this came along:

This fabric was thick and coarse, and immediately made me think of my great-aunt and uncle on my father's side. It looked exactly like something I would expect to find in Aunt Rutho and Uncle Dewitt's apartment. Heavy, old, with some sort of back story, and the distinctly aged fragrance of and old person--not mothballs or good bond, but not perfume or food either. Just...age.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Peace Over Power

The kiddo had his first karate class this evening. It was more of a sample class to see if he likes it and if he would want to take regular classes. Sanctioned punching and kicking? Yes, please.

Now, let's see how long it takes until I can get him to paint the house or wax my car.