Friday, July 31, 2009

tequila fixes everything

(comic via xkcd!)

the boy comes home today! i actually brought D's cell phone to work with me today in case he gets into town early, but i bet we won't see him until early evening. i have a million questions i want to ask him, but need to remind myself he's 15 and probably doesn't want to be poked too much. i'll ask him how it was and give him a day or so to relax and watch tv and sleep in, then i'll start with the harassment! i hope he had a good time. we're all looking forward to seeing him, even his little sister. for siblings, they get along really well, and i know she's missed having him around. it's not that she doesn't enjoy having her run of the place, but they do hang out quite a bit and i know she's been lonely.
D's been working a lot, and his schedule is pretty much the opposite of mine. on a good day i'm home at five, but he goes into work at 5:15. the past few days i haven't seen him more than half an hour here and there. it sucks, but i understand. work for him has been slow, and he's been feeling stressed out about money, so while it's busy and the tips are good he should rack up as many hours as possible. i know it's not forever, too, and honestly, because i only work four days a week i have three days that can accomodate his schedule easily. it is weird to not see him, though. especially considering we live together! he did get up this morning before me, though, and made a pot of coffee, which was sweet. we're also both trying to save a bit up before august (tomorrow, jeez!) because we're doing a lot of camping. got to sock away some money somehow!
i'm taking the kids and D to see my mom this weekend. my niece will be there, as well as my sister's mother-in-law. the past few times i've gone to the island it's been just me; it will be nice to bring everyone along this time. mom's been a bit lonely lately, which i suppose is to be expected. it still sucks, but it's probably an ordinary reaction. the kids and D love the island, and the girlchild and maggie get along really well. maggie runs all over asking where her friend is, telling her friend what to do, and hugging on M in between bossing her around. she's a sweet little dictator, even if she is a bit pushy! my mom finds nothing more satisfying than feeding the boychild; she went out and stocked up on hotdogs and chips and "real" soda for him. it's cute. i hope the weather stays nice but maybe isn't so hot-as-hades. we're doing a family day at D's folks house tomorrow, so it's going to be a weekend of grilling and eating and driving. it makes me glad i have three days off, so i can use monday to recover from all the hot dogs.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009


  • ordered some more new scrubs from UA. ahh, this week has been so comfy and awesome. guess what i discovered? i'm totally a solid scrub girl; no prints for me. i'm not sure why, but i am totally in love with the monochromatic look under a lab coat. i feel impossibly adult.
  • the boosh is loose in my house! folks, did you know the wait for the mighty boosh on a dvd that plays in the states is OVER?! i found out today, and am not sure how i missed it for this long. season one is in the house and we are all pleased.
  • my poor cat is totally flea-ridden and miserable. i just used some of that spot treatment on her last week, so it's too soon to re-dose her. i bought some spray that was supposed to help, but she hates it. it's entirely too hot to try to put the crack down, as well, because this is just primo flea weather. it's hard enough combatting the urge to melt into a puddle; fighting tiny, crafty, biting bugs? i am simply not up for it. this makes me a bad cat mom.
  • the boychik comes home in a few days! we all kind of miss the little jerk. (i kid! he's really tall. you know, five foot nine and a half.)
  • i discovered that these claw clips don't get pulled out by the magnet. guess who stopped brushing her hair? bonus points: named after my favorite cephalopod.
  • it's hot in my house. it's hot in your house. it's hot everywhere. people are crabby and going nuts and it's gotten so bad the heat has zapped my will to drink beer.

internet hunting

found today via boing boing (which is where i find a lot of stuff, internet gods be praised!), tor. tor is all sci-fi, all the time. they write about books and movies and games, publish stories, point you toward all sorts of sci-fi goodness. lately, as in the past few years, i've gotten back in touch with my sci-fi roots. as a kid i would read any and everything, without any self-consciousness. in college, i still read a ton, but found i hid certain things i read. sci-fi became my guilty little secret. then for a while i found myself hanging out with people who thought reading any kind of fiction was some sort of disgrace to the noble cause, and i probably read more non-fiction books then than i wanted to. i like non-fiction books, don't get me wrong, but sometimes i want to dive into a juicy story that's brand new, that isn't confined by facts. i already read a few stories on tor that were great, and i can't wait to see what else they serve up.

now that i'm "out" about my love of sci-fi, speculative and even (the teenager in me rolls her eyes) fantasy writing, i'm finding all sorts of awesome things to read, watch or listen to. i'm sure i've mentioned it before, but i LOVE pseudopod. i enjoy their sister podcast, escape pod, as well. i've been gobbling up neil gaiman books like candy, which are delightful and don't fall into any one neat category easily. the boychik has recommended dresden books enough and with such enthusiam that i just picked up the first of that from the library. (early verdict? i was totally bummed i forgot it at home today. seriously.) in keeping with the absurdist and fantastical theme i've been watching nothing but mighty boosh and spaced. i've been lamenting that i can't watch the big torchwood mini-series that's going on right now. so much to watch! so much to read!

it feels great sometimes when the internet yeilds such bounty! sure, the interwebs are mostly filled with pervs and porn and spam, but the good bits are really, seriously good. if you enjoy sci-fi at all, you should go check out tor. it's great. i'll have a review of anansi boys up soon, as well. it was a rollicking good time, and if you're even remotely interested i'd say pick it up. in a nutshell, you know. (wink)

Thursday, July 23, 2009

blue door

blue door, originally uploaded by pinprick.

i recently got my tax refund back. what i want to do with it is buy a new little camera; my trusty canon still works, but i've had it forever and it's all scratched to hell. if i got a new camera, then the kids could have my old one, making it an awesome win-win situation! alas, i won't be getting one because even with my newfound monies, i have other stuff that's more important to buy. or pay off. i did get myself an awesome pair of shoes for work; the dansko mae, which i hunted for on ebay FOREVER until i found a pair in my size and cheap. normally $125, i got my pair for $35 + shipping. whoo! they are prettier and way more comfortable than my other danskos, which pinch my heel like a sonofabitch.

i also bought some scrubs for work, which are delightful. scrubs are the best idea anyone ever had for clothing. remember how in the movies of the future, everyone was always wearing the same thing? or variations on a theme? it was as if in the future picking out what to wear had become obsolete. i for one, would like to suggest we earthlings adopt scrubs as our uniforms of the future. they are light, they are comfortable, they can be worn with a coat or sweater if you are cold, they come in a million different colors and you can throw then in the washer and drier with impunity. scrubs ARE the future, kids. how have nurses held out on us for so long? as a non-medical professional (ha!) working in a semi-medical field, i would just like to pass this information on to the rest of you. if you don't wear scrubs, you are missing out. if you can get away with wearing them, i'd like to highly recommend it. if we can't wear scrubs, let's at least all start wearing cozy jumpsuits, a la bottle rocket.

the house is quiet with only one kid at home. D and i looked at some new possible wedding venues. if you want to hear me talk about wedding stuff, you can click on "about me" and check out the afterthough blog i have listed there. if you don't want to hear about it, i totally understand. weddings are boring to everyone but the bride and groom, and even then i'd say are only really interesting to about half the folks involved. i'm all about the tv show 30 rock lately, and wish i were as cute or funny as tina fey. my sewing room is coming along nicely, and i hope you are having an awesome thursday!

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

sleep-away camp

start of lamp sweater, originally uploaded by pinprick.

on friday afternoon we got a call saying that the camp the boychik had applied to had a cancellation, meaning they had a spot for him on the next trip. which was, of course, two days away. we were excited for him, of course; he'll get to spend almost two weeks over at ross lake, learning about conservation, being out of the house, canoeing and hopefully making friends and having fun. we were also a bit stressed out because suddenly we had to get him outfitted and ready to go in just two days. D had to work all weekend, so it ws just the boy, the girlchild and i getting stuff done. i will say i'm pretty sure i hate clothes shopping with a 15 year old boy (evidently everything is stupid and/or simply shrugged at enigmatically), but both kids were awesome, given the circumstances. it was kind of stressful, but i'm happy to report we got everything he needed, and when he left on monday he seemed pleased to be going. i hope he has a great time, and have been thinking about what he might be up to all day today. all the time on the lake kind of makes me jealous.

however! soon all four of us will get to go to a camping trip together, and that's going to be fun. D has a ton of camping supplies, so we don't need to get too much together; maybe some new camp chairs (a few of ours are getting seriously ratty) and a new swimsuit for the girl. i'm looking forward to a few days of sun and swimming and relaxing. i never go camping as much as i want to in the summer, which is a shame, but the good thing about this trip is it isn't just a weekend away, it's a good five days. getting the boy ready to go this week just made me more antsy for our big trip!

Thursday, July 16, 2009

it's my folk's anniversary today. if my father were alive, they'd have been married 33 years today!

the past week has been hard in terms of missing him. i keep having dreams about him. one was the two of us having lunch together; we had chinese food and talked about MP3 players. at one point i asked him how he was doing, and he told me he missed my mom, he didn't know what to do without her. i told her she said the same thing. i woke up glad i had seen him, missing our stupid little talks, and feeling ridiculously sad. it was just a dream, after all, but to see him like that; healthier than he had been in years, with his long hair and dark face, relaxed and easy, sad about my mom, it was a bit much. i don't think i can ever say it enough or in such a way that anyone will understand, but i miss him. i miss the sound of his voice, the smell of his cologne, the way his boots clicked on pavement and linoleum. i miss knowing he was home with mom, that i always had two parents to go home to. i feel so inadequate at being a grown-up; losing him means having to step up, having to act my age and get my shit together, and while i'm not completely failing at that, i miss the security of him. of knowing he was there to help out, a safety net if i should need one.

mom is still adjusting to her new life, trying to remember to make smaller dinners, keeping busy, working. for all of us, life without him is something we're still getting used to. we're still a bit wary to talk too much about him, but we're getting a lot better. i think we're closer now than we were, and i know for a fact we're a bit more honest. it's not an easy adjustment, by any means, but we're not the first family to go through it. in the end, i'm glad i have my mom and sister, no matter how hard this all is. i always thought i was "serious" about family, but now i think i actually know what that means. seeing her alone is just another barb, another pain. i'll call her tonight just to tell her i love her, but i suppose today won't ever be the same for her.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

so. much. room.

haven't i been a quiet little blogger lately. our roommate is officially all the way moved out, and the kids have moved their bedrooms around. the boy got the biggest room, the girl the medium, and i now have her little bedroom. we had a huge folding table in the bedroom/garage (which is where D and i have our loft bed, shelves, and the washer and drier), but i moved that into the little room. we also have our sewing machines in here, my laptop, my dresser, and baskets of yarn and crafty stuff. i ordered some oilcloth for a tablecloth, and because our walls are weird and the landlord stranger (no new holes in the wall!), i affixed some sticky hooks to the wall and strung up some picture wire so i could hang up some postcards and photos with clothespins. it's not all the way set up, but it's coming together and comfortable to hang out in. last night the boychik and i did some knitting and listening to pseudopod together in there. it was fun. once i get it all the way set up, with the table covered and some chairs in here, we can do all sorts of crafty stuff! everyone's pretty excited about that.

i got an accidental day off today. we only had one scan scheduled today and it cancelled, so i'm home goofing around. i need to go to the post office, i want to do a little cleaning and organizing, i want to work on some socks for D and i'm reading good omens (which is delightful). it's a pretty happy summer day, i'm glad for the day off. there's still a lot of work to be done in our bedroom. without the table in there it seems huge. everytime i walk in i say "we have so much room for activities in here!" just like the boys in step brothers say. it's nice to have the whole house to ourselves, and i like having a little space to work on. it feels good to have a spot to listen to the radio and knit in (or draw, or sew, or whatever).

ooh! and good news! last week i talked to the head of radiology (who is my de-facto daily boss at the hospital) and found out that i can wear scrubs to work. whoo! scrubs are like pajamas you get to wear in public. i ordered some last week with some of the xray techs, and later this week they should show up. i'm pretty stoked about wearing something so comfy and easy to take care of on a daily basis. a scrub is like the perfect uniform; they come in just enough variety and colors to make them personal, but are made out of easy-to-care for fabric, and cut in such a way that even at a girl's most bloated, she still feels awesome. i can hardly wait for them to show up. i also won a seriously cute pair of dansko's on ebay, so for the first time i'll look like the other girls at work, albeit with less medical training. hooray for scrubs!

Monday, July 06, 2009

idiot savants

this morning in the car i was rocking out to lady gaga and thinking about pop stars. the publicity surrounding michael jackson still amazes me and i admit that i've been following it (although not terribly obsessively, honest!). i was thinking about MJ's decline in past years, about the public's consumption of him as a product, from his early days as a sweet-faced boy in his brother's band, to his amazing early 20's, to his decline into oddity and ridicule. everyone wants to blame joe jackson* for his son's weirdness and inappropriateness, but no one wants to take any blame for it themselves. we had a hand in making michael jackson. we bought his albums, we wanted him to dance and smile and make music we could shake our booties to, we bought the tabloids with the lurid headlines, we watched the uncomfortable and insane interviews, we lapped it up. no one really cared if he was healthy, or mentally okay, as long as he produced for us. it's the same with britney spears; we grew her in a crazy hothouse of child sexuality, money, and conflicting religious beliefs, then watched her shave her head and go batshit. no one honestly cared if she got better, or worked on her post-partum depression, as long as she got skinny again and made more albums. the public was concerned when it looked like she might burn out too soon, so we made it okay for her to get better "enough," put her dad in charge of doling out medication and keeping her home so she can make more albums, go on tours, work her toned body for our amusement. no one gives a shit if amy winehouse actually stops doing drugs because she's already made an album that everyone loves, and watching her skeleton cavort around a tropical island is evidently amusement enough for us. we've all made fun of courtney love for years, but i bet you if she died tomorrow the only photos of her that would be on magazine covers would be during that brief period of time when she was sober and acting and had a good boob job. the tabloids would show her with stringy, stick-figure arms and dark circles under her eyes, lamenting her decline and trying to shock us, and we would pretend that we weren't buying them, but the sales figures would show otherwise.

i'm not trying to sound all bitter and above it all; i'm as guilty of consuming artists, celebrities, this way. i do indeed own a britney spears album from after her nervous breakdown (yes! i know! i like to shake it, so sue me), i do flip through magazines and voraciously read the ones left behind at the hospital, full of gossip and information from secret sources. i love talk soup, and perez hilton and gossip columns. i just think it's time we talked about our role in creating celebrity this way. it's as though we like our stars to be entertainment idiot savants; talented and sparkly for us, but unable to live normal, healthy lives on their own. we talk a lot about how sad it is that certain celebs can't cope or handle fame, but we stand by and watch them self-destruct as gleefully as romans at a christian vs. lion match. i don't know where it comes from, i don't even know if we can do anything to stop it. if i gave it more though, maybe did some research, perhaps i could come up with some reasons we act this way. this is honestly just something i've been thinking about this morning, feeling slightly guilty about my own desire for dance music and celebrity drama. would not buying albums or gossip rags do anything? is there in fact, anything, we can do to change this? what sorts of cultural shifts would have to happen for us to become a society that cared about everyone's emotional and physical well-being, who saw celebrities for what they are; just people, but living under microscopes and pressured to produce for us. what happened with and to michael jackson seems tremendously fucked up; he had for all accounts a miserable childhood, he made a few brilliant albums and danced like his life depended on it, then he became a side-show freak, addled by drugs and trailed by child molestation allegations, and all the while everyone just watched. it was as fun for us to watch him dance like a zombie as it was to watch the painfully deluded man he became give creepy interviews. either way, we were entertained, we got what we wanted. i just hope now he has a little peace.

*this makes me crazy because the kid had two parents. katherine might not have been beating him and calling him names, but she was letting her husband, which i think makes her as culpable. just sayin'.

Saturday, July 04, 2009

today's menu

here is my revised plan,
  • shrimp pasta salad. this is my mom's recipe, and it involves tiny canned shrimps, cucumbers, onions, and elbow pasta. it's great.
  • cherry jello poke cake with cool-whip frosting. i know, i know, it's totally white trash, but it's soooo good. plus, i always make it on the fourth because it looks so damn cool when you cut into it.
  • nibbles including but not limited to; cheese and crackers, spicy pickled veggies, various crudite and tiny sausages.
  • onion dip and chips.
nothing too huge or fancy, in fact, it's really all just glorified nibbles. it's the kind of food that you can wander in and out of the house eating, and no one has to sit down or take it too seriously. which is exactly how i like a holiday to be!


good morning, it's the fourth of july! why am i up so early, you ask? D had to work early this morning, so i got up with him. the last few days off i've had i have totally squandered, and today i am determined to do something with the day. last night we folded all the clean laundry, today i may wash stuff like pillows and comforters and then hang them up outside in the sun. our roommate is almost all the way moved out, which has opened up a lot of room in the house. i'm unpacking stuff, getting stuff ready to sell on ebay (goodbye, vintage vogue knitting magazines), making lists that hopefully i'll cross lots of things off on. the kids spent the night at friend's last night, meaning i have a bit of time to myself this morning to get stuff started. D works all day and probably all night; it's just the three of us for the fourth festivities tonight. i'm trying to hunt down the firework shows for tonight, we might go out and watch some, or we might just hang out at home. my mom wants us to come out to the island and see them there, which sounds like fun as well as an awful lot of driving.

hope you have a great day! enjoy the fireworks, don't blow your fingers off, and eat some macaroni salad for me. ooh, maybe that's what i'll put on my list! macaroni salad and maybe a poke-cake. how better to celebrate our nation's idependence than with a cake made with jello?!

Thursday, July 02, 2009


look at this photo! why am i not camping in the desert in an airstream right this second? i saw this photo over on boing boing, via this amazing site, and had a palpable feeling of longing in my heart. truth be told, if i could, i would live in a sleek, silver airstream and be a happy, happy girl.

every time i see one i am reminded of the first time. i was in high school, and while i'm sure i'd seen airstreams on tv or on the road before, a friend of mine took me out to her dad's for a visit. i had what i still think of as my very first, airstream moment there. her father lived in one of those build-it-yourself single room log cabins on some property out in the skagit valley and wanted the world to think he was a die-hard hippie (when really, he was just kind of a pompous ass, in a balding, pony-tail, beret wearing kind of way). instead of a house, he had his cabin with a loft, and his office, where he kept his nautical maps and books, was a small airstream trailer.

the moment i stepped into it i was hooked. the way the walls curved gracefully up and around, the built in benches and cupboards and shelves, the cute formica folding table; it was all just perfect. i loved the way everything had a place, how no space was wasted, and how it managed to do that all while being impossibly cute. i remember his trailer had blond wood paneling in it, and faded linoleum on the floor, and i'm pretty sure i could spent all day there and not run out of thing i found amazing about it. from then on i noticed airstreams everwhere, and couldn't help but wonder what they looked like inside and how i could get my hands on one.

that part hasn't happened yet, but i'm still hopeful. maybe someday that will be in the desert or forest, with my little silver dream and a folding chair and some cheerful lawn gnomes.