My online journal.

Monday, April 30, 2007

2 questions, and I expect responses!

Question! For the healthy-eaters, the budget-conscious, and the cooks in my readership:

Is there any reason I wouldn't always substitute ground chicken or turkey, for ground beef? Is there some reason 90%-lean ground beef is over $3 per pound, when the ground poultry is sometimes $1 per pound?

I am totally serious. Is chicken fat more onerous than beef-fat? Is it a cholesterol thing? I have no idea. Help!

Question Part 2, completely unrelated:
Lucy woke up soaking wet from her nap today. Tinkel? No. But her hair and clothes were soaked through... did she just have a sweaty dream, or something?

Feast or famine

I blog nothing for a week and then I can't stop!

And speaking of feasts:

I made Chicken Helmets last night. "Helmets" is what Joel calls any small, individual-sized portion of food. I've made mini-meatloaves that he called "meat helmets" and there was once something called "pork helmets" but I don't remember what that recipe was about.

I invented these chicken helmets, so take this with a grain of salt:

I took about 15 small corn tortillas, sprayed both sides with olive oil, and then tucked them individually into muffin tins (I kind of had to fold them... not so pretty, but effective). I baked them, empty, at about 375 for maybe 15 minutes? and then took 'em out when they were nice and crispy and holding their shape.

Then I mixed some cooked, chopped chicken (it had been cooked with garlic and some spices and artichokes, for extra flavor and saltiness) with a can of cream of chicken soup, 1/2 a soup-can of milk, maybe 1/2 cup lite sour cream, and maybe 1.5 cups of frozen peas. And some ground pepper. Then I spooned that mezcla into each little mini-taco-shell and topped each with one frozen tater tot. Baked about 25 minutes at 350 and they were so ultra tasty! They were easy for Ed to tear apart, and Lucy liked holding the little "cup" in her hands. Sooo... chicken helmets! AKA little individual tater-tot hotdishes. There you go. No charge. ;)

Random photos

Lucy 'apprised!
Ed actually enjoyed the pool, once he got used to it.
Lucy coloring eggs in Monti on Easter. Er, wait, Easter Eve.
My awesome bleeding lamb cake. Seriously, it rocked.

Saturday, April 28, 2007

Coming up with an original title is sooo taxing.

What? I haven't written anything since last Tuesday? Inconceivable.

Last week was a rough week in our household. Ed sprouted 2 new molars and had some kind of nasty sad-panda cold-thing and I was experiencing several minor-yet-exasperating aggravations, plus I was running a lot (and hence very tired) and kind of anxiously anticipating my Weekend of Fun, upon which I will now elaborate...

Well, I'm midway through Meggo's Weekend of Fun!! (Oh sorry, I started typing this Saturday afternoon.) Joel took the kids up to Monti for the weekend and I am alone. I am all by myself.

Yesss!

So last night (that would be Friday) I took myself to a $2 showing of The Queen (with Helen Mirren). Great movie! This morning (Saturday) I treated myself to a haircut and then ate lunch at Shish on Grand Ave (I burned my gums on the tomato soup but the Turkish coffee was unbelievably good) and then I did a little shopping, and then I ran about 40 minutes in that neighborhood. I'm not big into the Grand Ave scene, but it is so cool to get to go into these establishments and chat for a while with the owners.

Tonight I think I'm going to try to catch the Zenon Dance show (later note: I did. And I'm glad I did, though modern dance remains a total mystery to me). Tomorrow morning I'm drinking brunch and then playing softball in the afternoon.

A couple other kidnotes I started weeks ago and never posted:
Lu can recite the entire book "Don't Let the Pigeon Stay Up Late" with minimal prompting.

She says, apropos of nothing: "I'm sorry, I'm a girl."

She has a stock narrative to "tell you about her day." It starts with monsters in her closet, and sometimes progresses to a school bus or train ride. I don't know that she's ever been on a school bus or a train.

She thinks that when she wakes up from nap, it's a new day (she'll often refer to the morning as "yesterday" ("usterday") and sometimes as she's going to bed at night, she asks if Jayla is coming soon).

She's going to the potty "all on her own" now, from taking down her own skirt/underwears to wiping, to dumping out the little potty. She actually does really well... she's much more coordinated than I sometimes give her credit for.

Ed has glommed onto his Word of the Month: Mommy. Finally! After 2 months of "Hi" and then "Hi Da!" Now we get "Mommy. Mom-my. Momm-mmy." He usually says it like a question, too: "Momm-my?" so I'm always, like, "Yes?"

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

A couple books... too much toothpaste.

Lucy always asks for "a couple books" before she goes to bed. Does she mean "two"? No. She means, approximately, twelve.


Also, if she ever says to you "I want too much!" that is because when she's putting toothpaste on her toothbrush, I always tell her "Not too much!" To the point that now when I hand her the toothpaste she says "I want too much."


So! Here we have: a couple photos from last weekend. Too much photos. ;)

Bunny makes the world go 'round

Some quick updates:

- Lucy was dry again this morning. That's 4 nights in a row! She then tinkled on the rug at, like, 10:00 this morning. Unbelievable. To paraphrase the immortal words of Paula Abdul's smash hit "Opposites Attract:" we take two steps forward, we take two steps back.

- Ed has two more new teeth: D and G (just to each side of the front 2). So he's drooling like the village idiot, and his nose is running like a leaky faucet, and he cries and cries so basically his face is a very wet place. He's had fevers all day, peaking at over 103 rectally (thanks Joel for doing the dirty work) right at bedtime. He was also up coughing much of last night... poor, sick panda.

- I had a very rough day (Jayla's sick too... and Lucy didn't nap), followed by a fantastic run. Jean and I did Lake Phalen (3.125 miles) twice at dusk. The weather was beautiful and I was shocked to feel so good at the end of 6-and-a-quarter miles. Really, nothing hurt and I felt like I could have gone longer, if I'd had to. Breaking the "halfway-to-10-miles" mark was a big psychological barrier for me to cross... so we celebrated with ice cream at the Dari-ette. I am SO excited it's Dari-ette season again!!

Monday, April 23, 2007

Brown Girl In the Ring

...la, la-la-la-la!

I have no idea what this song is about. But it's on a Raffi CD that I got from the library. And now it's stuck in my head.

She LOOKS like a sugar in a plum. Plum plum!

So, I have time to type now because my 2 kids are ni-night and Jayla is very tired but still awake upstairs. And I daren't try to do anything truly constructive until I'm sure she's actually going to sleep.

Had a wonderful trip to Milwaukee over the weekend for Peg's (I almost said bachelorette!) baby shower. The shower was fun... my folks got to take the kids to the zoo and swim with them in the hotel pool... and my face got sunburnt. In April. It was awesome.

I didn't run Fri, Sat or Sun. Today Jean watched the kids while I ran for... 40 minutes!! I walked for 4 minutes at the 20-minute mark, but I think that was it. I felt really great, much much better than I thought I would. I outran some shin splints; my right hip was hurting a little, but other than that I feel like I could have gone farther. I think I went about 3.5 miles total. *sigh* We'll see.

Ed got a new tooth on Friday! It's either B, I, L, or S (Jamie will verify... please Jamie? It's on his left lower jaw). His mouth is ridiculous... he has the two big front ones on top, and on bottom he has the two middles, and one just to the right, and then this giant molar in his back left... three spots away from the next-nearest tooth. Goofy kid. He's started walking quite a bit more; you can now set him down and he might just stand/walk on his own.

Lucy has had dry diapers three nights in a row! She was up late Fri and Sat night, so she was able to empty herself at, like, 10PM those nights. We didn't expect it to happen when we reverted to her normal 8PM bedtime, but it worked Sunday night too. Awesome! I never anticipated this part would come so quickly. I'm sure there will be setbacks, but to know that she can do it, is phenomenal. Go Lu!

Friday, April 20, 2007

The Music Truck Story

It's not even a story, really. This is going to be so anticlimactic.

So you know the ice cream truck that drives around the neighborhood in good weather? Well, my parents told me it was the music truck: playing music for the enjoyment of all the children in the neighborhood. Kind of like the Pied Piper, or something.

My parents also gave me crackers, saying "Here! These are cookies!" So then when I'd go to other people's houses and they'd offer me cookies, I'd shrug and go "Eh, no thanks."

I mock, but look! I have relatively healthy eating habits today.


So...
Thanks to all the commenters from yesterday. I want to apologize for not being as cool and diplomatic as I wish I could be... my itchy typing-fingers and short temper are things I struggle with daily.

Anonymous comments are welcome on this blog. Identifying yourself, however, allows readers to put your words into some sort of context. Most of my readers are white, middle-class midwesterners. But some are not. Diverse perspectives can edify us and make us all more well-rounded and better-educated individuals. But simple words, without knowing the writer's background or experience, can be open to misinterpretation and misunderstanding.

I don't think yesterday's Anon meant to be nasty or rude -- if I only knew who the person was, I would be able to "think" the comments in his/her voice, and put myself in his/her shoes, and see where he/she was coming from. I know "tone" is important, and it's hard to convey "tone" in a simple comment.

I've heard of, and visited, blogs where nasty anonymous comments are left, all willy-nilly, and I've always been happy and proud that my readers haven't gone there. Uh, listen, I'm not a philosopher or whatever. I'm tired and I want to blog about my kids and my runs. So, hugs and kisses to all...


My kids and my runs
I just realized "my runs" sounds really gross.

Ran this morning (got up, all bright-eyed and bushy-tailed, at 6 AM) and got my tush out the door and made it almost 2 miles without having to walk. These hills are killing me, I tell you what. I completed the same loop as usual, but I went a couple extra blocks because I got lost in my neighborhood. I know, it's mostly a grid. I sorta got turned around... not used to being out when the sun is on the eastern horizon. Anyway, by the end I felt terrific and I think I need to start stretching my total distance. So I popped the kids in the double stroller and pushed them a mile and a half to Cub Foods (with a potty stop at the library) and back. More hills. Oyyyy.

My cousin Kate is in town for bid'ness and came over for dinner last night. Our first meal of the season in the gazebo! We had nice talks and lots of laughs.

Going to bed now...

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

No-hassle cash rewards.

We're watching the AI results show as I type. Joel just promised he would watch the show every single week -- and vote -- if only Sanjaya can be kicked off.

I truly couldn't care less... American Idol, I'm just not that into you anymore. Oh! Did I tell you guys that in the beginning of the season I got an email from some crazy website that was looking for American Idol bloggers and because I was "someone who's blogged about AI in the past," would I like to join their blog ring, or whatever? It's just weird how easy it is to connect these days. Well anyway, I didn't join and I'm glad because AI has me soooo cold this year.

But I do want to say, for the record, that Melinda Doolittle is totally amazing and is light-years ahead of the rest of the pack.

ALSO!

That commercial just came on, for the Chrysler National Minivan Sale... where there's a lunchroom full of screaming kids and the principal/teacher walks by and flips down a DVD player out of the ceiling and all the kids shut up and just stare at the screen. Have you seen this commercial? Joel and I agreed the first time we saw it, there are SO MANY THINGS wrong with this commercial. Here are at least two:
1. Ohhh, don't have a DVD player in your minvan? Time to buy a new minivan! I may be only a former marketing, um, person, but this seems like faulty logic. Especially when portable DVD players are available for, like, a hondo at Target.

2. The kids are all unruly at school. Rather than disciplining them, or making school interesting, let's turn on the TV to get them to shut up! Now, don't get me wrong, when we make the 6-hour drive to Chicago, we turn on a movie only the last 2 hours, when the kids are getting super duper squirrelly. (We don't actually have a DVD player in the car; we have to MacGyver a laptop balanced on a cooler and bolstered by pillows and board-books and detached headrests.) I think that putting a movie on to keep the kids from whining is one of those things that comes, and ought to, with a healthy dose of guilt. A treat! That's what I'm trying to say. Watching a movie in the car ought to be a treat. Like, dessert. Omigosh! Yes! We were at the park this afternoon, waiting for Joel to get home from work, because I was taking the kids to the park anyway, and I went inside the house one more time just to throw out a baggie and grab my keys and when I got outside and closed the door, I realized I still had the baggie in my hand but no keys and, you guessed it, I actually threw my keys in the trash and kept the baggie... I am a doofus. Anyway! So we're at the park, right, and it's probably about 5:30. And the music truck* pulls up and every other kid at the playground (maybe 10 kids) runs over to the music truck and all their parents are buying them ice cream. And I try not to be judgmental, but seriously? OK I could go on for weeks but in our family we just don't go buy $2.50 ice creams 20 minutes before dinnertime simply because the music truck stops by the park.

So Lucy and Ed and I watch all the other kids run to the music truck. (At this point Joel shows up.) Lucy asks, "What's that?" And we say, of course, in unison, "It's the music truck!" And then this little 8-year-old girl whose mom I had been talking with and who had a brother about Lucy's age, named Eddie, ran over and said "My mom wanted to know if it would be okay if we bought this for your daughter" and tried handing me an ice cream and while I really appreciated the extremely generous gesture (Lucy was the only kid not getting ice cream), I was really surprised, I mean, really surprised, and semi-appalled, and I know I'm a nazi about having the kids eat healthy but I think dessert should be a treat, not an expectation and seriously we were just about to go home and have dinner and I do give the kids treats! I do!

Aiiieee! Antonio Banderas just made an appearance on AI. I love him.

Okay, I've got a hangnail and the Twins game is on the radio and the whole point of this entry was supposed to be to post about my run yesterday, in which I wore my new shoes for the first 12-minute mile and they felt absolutely fantastic and then I switched back to the old ones and ran the rest of the loop, completing a whole nother mile before having to walk again, which I did for about 2 minutes and then ran the rest of the way home. So that was good! I meant to run today but I got real, real tired after dinner so I'm going to go in the morning before my annual exam, and Q: how do you know you have absolutely no life? A: When you are actually looking forward to your annual exam because it means you get to get out of the house without the kids.

Monday, April 16, 2007

Run updater

I went on my same 2.5-mile loop that I did yesterday. I felt... terrific, actually! I ran about 15 minutes before pooping out (but that was on a hill)... I walked for 3 minutes, then ran 2 more minutes (still on the hill, you know!), then walked 2 more and then ran the rest of the way home (er, downhill).

I got shin splints before I even hit the first mile, but I just kept going (since Jean promised me I wouldn't permanently injure myself by running with shin splints, unlike, say, running with a broken ankle) and, much to my shock, they actually went away. But I think running uphill (which I have to do for the middle part of my run) helps... sooo... I dunno.

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Bonk

I know the only reason you're checking my blog is to hear about my latest excuse for not running. Well, today I have a good one!

Saturday morning I went to give blood. I gave blood, then got up (slowly!) and walked over to the cantina area (where they have all the juice and sugary snacks). I started getting a little light-headed on the way over to the chair in the cantina. I remember sitting down, and then next thing I know I felt like I was waking up, and all these strange faces were looking at me.

You know sometimes how you wake up and forget where you are? This was sort of like that, only multiplied by 50. I could not for the life of me figure out where I was. And who were all these people looking at me? I assumed I must have stumbled into somebody else's dream, so I decided just to go back to sleep.

Except the people were really insistent that I shouldn't go back to sleep. Apparently I'd passed out and hit the floor with first my shoulder and then my forehead. They iced my forehead and my neck, and made me lay with my feet up (the Trendelenburg position), and made me breathe into a paper bag. Ugh. Anyway, Jean came to get me and I went home and kept icing and took a nice nap, kind of all afternoon. I feel like a total idiot and I have a bit of a goose egg on my forehead and I feel a little shell-shocked from learning that I am not invincible, after all... but otherwise I'm fine. I guess. I'm real reluctant to start running now, of course. I decided to do this run, what, three weeks ago? Then we were socked with two weeks of bad weather, then I go and get owie blisters and shin-splints, and now I've gone and busted my head. As much as I really thought this was something I ought to do, now I am seriously questioning the wisdom of attempting it. Argh.

Though the staff at the Red Cross were very nice, I thought they failed me in a couple ways:
1. The did a terrible job explaning things to me: like, how I was supposed to breathe into the bag, and why exactly I fainted in the first place.
2. It was obvious that they were far more concerned about me coming back to give blood again, than about my actual well-being. They kept saying things like "You didn't pass out just because you gave blood" and they would correct each other when one person would say "Oh, we pull the screen out all the time when people pass out" and then another would give the first person a look and say "Not that people pass out all that much, sometimes we just need to give people some privacy".

So! Here's my call-out to you. I give blood because there is a need. Someday I, or someone I love, may need some blood, and I want there to be enough to go around. I feel good about myself after I donate. I plan to give blood again. I want you to seriously consider donating blood. If nothing else, maybe if you give, the Red Cross people will get the heck off my back for a while. Especially if you're type B pos. So, do it for Meg's forehead! Donate blood today!


More Musicals!
Went to see Pippin at the Monti High School on Saturday night. I thought I just liked the show for sentimental reasons, since we did it when I was a soph in HS, but it turns out I really like that show. Mr. Stephen Schwartz, I apologize for all the mean things I said about you in the past. The Monticello production was just terrific, for a high school production. I loved some of the creative choices they made. The gals playing Berthe and Fastrada were exceptional, and some of the individual chorus members really shone as well. So fun!

Alison asked what my favorite musical of all time is. I could never, ever choose. Les Miz and Mis Saigon are maybe the most emotionally wrenching. Wicked has a very special place in my heart. So does Pippin, but for totally different reasons. Joseph... was, for me, the most fun to be in. And I don't even own the soundtracks for Jesus Christ Superstar, The Sound of Music, Cabaret, and dozens of other shows I dearly love.

Friday, April 13, 2007

Broadway Musicals for Dummies?

My friend Becky asked me to put together a CD of some songs from musicals for her. WELL! It didn't all fit on one CD. I made her 4 CDs. And if I do say so myself, it's a really good selection of music.

So... would you like a copy of Meg's little showtunes primer? I'll burn ya one (I mean, four). Here's the playlist, if you're interested. I could sub out songs if desired -- these are just sort of my favorites... for one reason or another.

DISC ONE

1776
1. The Lees of Old Virginia
2. But, Mr. Adams
3. Mama Look Sharp

Anything Goes
4. Friendship
5. Anything Goes
6. Blow, Gabriel, Blow
7. Be Like the Bluebird

Bombay Dreams
8. Bombay Dreams
9. Shakalaka Baby

Cats
10. Jellicle Songs for Jellicle Cats
11. Macavity
12. Memory

Chicago
13. And All That Jazz
14. Mr. Cellophane
15. Nowadays/Hot Honey Rag


DISC 2

Children of Eden
- Let There Be
- Father's Day
- Generations
- In Whatever Time We Have

A Chorus Line
- I Can Do That
- One

Dreamgirls
- Steppin' To the Bad Side
- And I Am Telling You...
- One Night Only (disco version)

Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat
- Jacob & Sons
- Go, Go, Go Joseph

Les Miserables
- Stars
- Who Am I?
- Red & Black
- One Day More
- On My Own


DISC 3

Miss Saigon
1. The Heat is on in Saigon
2. Why God Why?
3. I Still Believe
4. I'd give my life for you
5. Bui Doi

The Phantom of the Opera
6. The Phantom of the Opera
7. The Music of the Night

Avenue Q
8. What Do You Do With A B.A. In English?/It Sucks To Be Me
9. If You Were Gay
10. Everyone’s A Little Bit Racist
11. For Now

Rent
12. Seasons of Love
13. Will I?
14. I'll Cover You

Spamalot
15. Knights of the Round Table
16. Always Look on the Bright Side of Life

Sweeney Todd
17. The Ballad of Sweeney Todd


DISC 4

Thoroughly Modern Millie
1. Not For The Life Of Me
2. Thoroughly Modern Millie
3. How the Other Half Lives
4. The Speed Test
5. Jimmy
6. Forget About the Boy

West Side Story
7. Jet Song
8. Cool
9. Tonight
10. America
11. Quintet
12. A Boy Like That/I Have a Love

Wicked
13. Overture/No One Mourns The Wicked
14. The Wizard And I
15. What Is This Feeling?
16. Popular
17. One Short Day
18. Defying Gravity
19. For Good

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

And now, some good things...

If you're familiar with that 1973 animated, musical version of Charlotte's Web that is Lucy's obsession, then you'll appreciate how Lucy spent the entire ride home from Easter in Monti singing "My brother, my brother, my Eddie!" to the tune of the title song.

Especially if your 2-year-old spent the ride home from Easter jabbering about cows.

Today when Jayla came over (before all Hector Villanueva broke loose), I had J and E and L all sitting on my lap, and Ed kept reaching for J and I said, Ed, can you say "Hi Jayla"? And I swear he totally said "Hi, Jay-jay!" He said it like three times. Awesome!

Confessions of an Angry Mother

Hey kids. Listen, I know sometimes I'm lots of sunshine and roses, but that's not what you're getting today. Today, you're getting blisters and spankings.

Tried out my new shoes on a run this morning (I actually got up at 6:30 to run!!). Mostly because I thought I'd read that "breaking in" new shoes is a myth, and that good new shoes shouldn't cause blisters. Well, A) they're not really that good of new shoes; they're New Balances but definitely bottom-of-the-line NBs. B) Hello, I have owned shoes for at least the last 30 years and I'm pretty sure shoes do, indeed, grow a little softer once you've worn them for a while.

Bottom line: I ran for 20 minutes until a hill kicked my heiney. I could tell I was getting blisters on the back of my heels, so I laced the shoes tighter, thinking that would stop the rubbing. Bad idea. Walking was agony at that point so I unlaced them entirely and was able to sprint the last 2 blocks home in almost no pain.

Got home and found a blister the size of a dime on my left heel. I lanced it, drained it, and MacGuyvered some diaper-rash cream under the blister's roof, using one of Ed's old syringe-like Liquid-Motrin-dispensers. This sounds gross, and probably is, but it was also very cool. I do like to dabble in self-surgery. My right heel's blister was less malevolent-looking, so I just band-aided it and am hoping for the best, or at least for a good science-fair topic: Which Blister Heals Faster?

After lunch, Jayla arrived and all was going well. I put Ed down for nap. I put Jayla down for nap. It was time for Lucy's nap and I gave her fair warning and I closed her shades and she said "I don't want to nap" and from then on it was a nightmare. She didn't want to go potty. Then insisted on going alone -- wouldn't even let me in the bathroom. So she went tinkle and then insisted she had to go #2 too. So she tried the little potty, tried the big potty, tried the little potty again and I was like, I'm sorry, that's it, you are done, we're going to go down for nap and she insisted on emptying out the potty but I said I had to help her (because I don't want tinkle all over my bathroom floor, and I don't think that's too neat-freaky of me, do you?) and she freaked out and was screaming so I swatted her bottom so she slapped my face and I am a horrible mother and then Jayla was screaming too and I was so angry I could spit. I put Lu in her bed and told her I didn't want to see her for 2 hours. She has actually been quiet ever since. Ed, of course, woke up then, too, but I think he calmed down after Jayla left.

Sooo... it's a rough day. I do not believe in spanking, and obviously it wasn't the right thing to do since she just hit me right back. I am really ashamed to admit I did that, but what the heck, I don't want anybody snowed into thinking I don't need a lot of help making it, here. I am really afraid I broke her heart and I desperately want to go in and hug her and tell her I love her (again, because I did tell her before I put her down) but I also desperately want her to nap a little longer. Argh.

Sunday, April 08, 2007

AND I got to watch the Twins on cable! Yes!!

I feel the need to clarify: I am not running a 10K. I am running ten STINKING MILES... almost twice a 10K. I am going to die.

I did go for my First Run on Sunday; it was about three miles and it was great! My hips hurt a little and I was way tired by the end, but all in all it was good action.

For a while now, Lucy's been answering "Three o'clock!" whenever you ask her what time it is, and I think we just realized why: in the song "Goodnight, Sweetheart" (which, according to Lu, is "Daddy's song"), the first verse begins "Well, it's three o'clock in the morning..." and I'm sure that's where she got it.

My dad sent us a mix CD he just made (ostensibly for the kids, but I'm going to be the one weeping along to it every day) with a bunch of old-time favorites that remind me of my childhood. So many memories evoked by the playlist! Oh, here, what the heck, here it is:

Shimmy Shimmy Coco Bop
Goodnight Sweetheart

Please Don't Talk to the Lifeguard
Kissin' and a-Huggin' with Fred
Catch a Falling Star
Mr. Sandman
Hernando's Hideaway
Day-O
Where Have All the Flowers Gone?
Sweet Charlotte (hey Dad, I'm not actually familiar with this one. Should I be?)
Little Deuce Coupe
Scarlet Ribbons
Puff, the Magic Dragon

We had an awesome Easter weekend in Monti with the Gronaus. We colored eggs on Saturday night, the kids were reasonably well-behaved at church on Sunday, and we did an outdoor egg-hunt (a first for me!) with Lucy. I was in charge of dessert and thought it would be funny to make a traditional lamb cake with white frosting but with a red velvet cake... a la the armadillo groom's cake in Steel Magnolias. Joel and I thought it was hilarious -- I'm not sure anybody else truly appreciated it, which is OK. I didn't have a lamb-cake pan so I kind of invented it out of regular cake pans and even though the photos don't show its true beauty (nor its bleeding interior) it turned out much better (and far more stable) than Ellen's Macchu Pichu cake last November. I am improving!

Lucy's been doing great in the toiley department. She's been dry for naps for a full week, and even though she has been having maybe one accident a day (during the week, that is, mostly because she refuses to be torn away from playing)... she actually had a dry diaper this morning. I'm astounded, as usual.

Eddie is now feeding himself almost exclusively. He even uses a spoon about half the time, which is just awesome and very freeing for me. He's been walking a *bit* more in the last few days, too -- he can maybe go 10-12 feet at a stretch, and sometimes he even pulls himself up and takes off on his own. He was mimicking sounds a lot this weekend; Grammy D has a Little People zoo set that makes animal noises, and Ed got the lion, elephant, and even the monkey pretty close. I swear he grew during his nap today -- I came home from my run and he was, like, somehow less of a baby.

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

I forgot to post this! Convos with Lulu

Jean was over the other week and we were packing up the kids to go to the grocery store and Lucy asked Jean: "We going to Jeannie's house?"

Jean: "No, Lu, we're not going to my house."

Lucy: "Oh, it's too messy?"

Then yesterday I was walking in the kitchen and I slipped on one of the kids' blankies that was lying on the kitchen floor. "Whoa!" I said as I sort of fell into a chair. "I slipped!"

Lu: "You slipped onna blanket?"

Me: "Yes, I did."

Lu: "It's okay, Mommy. It happens sometimes." (big cheesy grin)

Me: "You're cute, Lucy."

Lu: "Thank you."

I actually do happen to believe in coincidences.

http://blog.nj.com/sopranos/

Sooo... apparently on The Sopranos there was a horse named Pie Oh My that was killed by a guy named Joey Pants. John Shabe from Joysey was kind enough to bring this to my attention, and now he has an enormous picture of my head on his blog. How super weird is that? (the coincidence, I mean, not my head)? The guy refers to searching the "Internets" so I figure he must be relatively cool. Even if he did say I look like a mom. ;) (As I'm sure my mom is thinking: guess what, Meg, you ARE a mom.)

My swing dance class last night went splendidly. I have about 8 couples (I think there are actually maybe 9, but one didn't show up) and they all at least sort of know each other (they all live in the same building), which is a very cool dynamic to teach.

I have not started running yet, but Jean is on my tail and we're going to be able to run together at least a couple days a week, it seems. I do need to invest in a new pair of running shoes and a comfortable watch, if I'm going to make this work.

I'm hoping to have something to post soon that is more than just the mundanities of my day-to-day. Like, um, gee, anything other than "We went to the Children's Museum this morning and now the kids are napping." I'm workin' on it. :)

Monday, April 02, 2007

Monday, Monday

"Whuff" is the noise I want to make right now. I am in one of those moods where I have about 400 things I ought to be doing. Am I doing any of them? Nope. Blogging.

I took the kids to the park this morning, during those doldrums known as after-morning-snack-but-before-lunch. It was a little chilly, probably low 40s, and really overcast. Of course, now the sun's out. Anyway, it's a challenge because Ed's not walking but is big into exploring and climbing. And Lucy's not really much of an explorer and would much prefer to follow someone else's lead. Or just sit in the (very cold and damp) sand and dig. So I let her, and I just let Ed toodle and crawl around. Thank goodness for antibacterial soap and machine-washable clothes, I tell you what.

So apparently I signed myself up for the Soldier Field 10 Mile, which sounds a lot like I will have to run for TEN WHOLE BLEEPING MILES, which is about eight more miles than I am at all comfortable running. I'm so not pleased. Anyway, it's in Chicago on Memorial Day Saturday. My sisters are running too, which would be fine except they'll be flying on ahead of me and I'll probably just stop in Chinatown mid-race until someone comes to pick me up. I'm toast.

I start teaching my new swing dance lessons tonight and I'm sort of looking forward to it... I think? I don't know what the space is like, but I do know the people who set it up for me, so I'm hoping it'll be fun and fulfilling. I've never taught two sessions of classes concurrently (I mean, one-right-after-another, is that the right word? I think it's not.) but I think that might be a good thing... I can learn from my own very recent mistakes.

But I should probably at least wash my face before going.

Also, I'm supposed to start Lucy and Josie on some Friday dance lessons and I have some seriously awesome ideas but it's kind of a daunting task, pulling a whole curriculum together.

And I promised JG I would put the laundry away upstairs. He asked very sweetly and in the way that means, seriously, it would be a really good thing if I could get it done.

And I guess I should think about dinner. I have pork chops defrosting on the counter... but no plan...

Argh!