Friday, October 31, 2008

Happy Halloween

Only had time to do some speed carving this year about 30 minutes before the first trick-or-treaters. After a slow start, we ended up with 86 this year. Not bad...up 10 from last year.

We're terrible parents. We forgot to take a picture of August in her costume. We might just dress her up tomorrow and take some.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

"Typical" day

Yesterday Ray posted his typical weekday schedule. It was interesting to me, since I didn't really realize that we'd initiated this kind of clock-work thing when it comes to August's needs. So anyway, here's my part:

6 am -- wake up, stretch

6:08 -- organize and pack stuff/computer for day

6:20 -- try to shower without waking August

6:45 -- August up, change and dress her

7:00 -- August wakes up Ray, requests breakfast

7:05 -- Dress, hair, etc. while Ray feeds Aug, packs her lunch

7:20 -- Blend up smoothie for road; try to remember am-round of vitamins and naturapathic concoctions

7:30 -- Try and figure out lunch to pack; 1/2 the time I give up and plan to go to Chipotle

7:35 -- Brush teeth, find socks, find Aug shoes and socks...get both of us ready to go

7:50 -- head out the door to daycare

8:05 -- get to daycare, get August settled

8:18 -- head toward school

8:45 -- get to Wallingford, watch bus pull away from stop w/o me, walk to campus

9:05 -- arrive on campus

9:10 -- unpack; check emails

9:25 -- study/write/read/etc until class...schedule is different every day

11:45 -- run out to Chipotle/eat lunch while studying/writing/reading/class prep

1:30 pm -- teach class for 2 hours M W F

3:30 -- go to class or study/write/read/check email

4:30 -- pack up (except for days when I'm still in class 'til 5)

5:10 -- back at car if I've managed to catch the bus

5:30 -- try to relax while 99 is jammed up

5:45 -- get home, play with August

6 pm -- Ray feeds Aug, while I squeeze in some short email or class prep work

6:20 -- play with Aug, read books

6:30 -- Aug jammies

6:40 -- bed time ritual: brush teeth, read books, rock

7:00 -- Aug in crib with 47 "friends"

7:03 -- squeeze in a few minutes of class prep

7:15 -- try to remember round 2 of vitamins and naturopathic concoctions

7:20 -- eat dinner w/ Ray

8:00 -- back to studying: computer/articles/homework/class prep

10:00 --Try to tear myself away from schoolwork

10:30 -- Successfully shut down computer and put away articles.

10:35 -- get ready for bed

10:45 -- crochet my crochet-thingy, talk to Ray, try to decompress

10:47 -- Ray wants to read me something horrific about the economy, current administration, decimated village in Russia, etc.

10:55 -- light out

10:58 -- asleep

Monday, October 27, 2008

C'mon now

Headline from this morning's front page...

Obama, McCain ease up on attacks


Campaign says Palin returned a third of new clothes - wrong size, style

Seriously. I can't wait for the next 8 days to be over.

Friday, October 24, 2008


Sunday, October 19, 2008


Today was all about fall harvest...and had nothing to do with vast quantities of plums.

This morning, I baked two loaves of pumpkin bread: one gluten- and refined sugar free, which was quite tasty even though I ran out of maple syrup, and the other one regular wheat flour for potluck. Nothing smells like fall more than the smell of pumpkin bread wafting through the house.

After lunch, we packed up the car and headed to Carnation for pumpkin picking and farm animal viewing. I rarely go out to this part of the county (to be honest, I think I've been to Carnation once about 20+ years ago). It was a gorgeous drive -- the sun was shining, the leaves were turning and the cattle were lowing*. It was such a beautiful, peaceful drive that it seriously got me thinking about giving up my ironclad native Seattleite identity.

We got to the farm, which was packed of course, and had much to do. We sampled roasted corn and an organic hamburger, introduced August to chickens, ponies, and two smelly sleeping pigs (they scared her), rode behind a tractor to the pumpkin patch, and picked out a pumpkin to take home. Ray picked up some produce while we were there, and August ogled the corn maze in the barn loft, though we didn't attempt it.

Next: a Sukkah party. My lab-mate and her family hosted a potluck to celebrate the Jewish harvest holiday. I thought I was familiar with Jewish holidays, but this one -- called Sukkot -- was news to me. Basically, each family builds a sukkah in their backyard, like a little temporary gazebo where they can eat, sleep if it's good weather, and visit with friends. The sukkah is adorned with branches, paper chains, fruit and vegetables hanging for decoration. My friend decided to forgo the fruit and veggies to keep the bees away. Anyway, everyone brought food and spent some time sitting in the sukkah, while a million kids ran around and hit each other with sticks. August was quite envious.

All in all, a great day, though I'm spent and can't crack the journal articles I'd set aside for this evening.

* Whatever that means.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

The Inner Bitch or How To Start a Relaxing Hobby

I paid a call to the yarn store yesterday.

Me (to clerk): Hi, I need some help. (The doctor told me I need to relax. Since I need some activity to make me do that, it was between crocheting and knitting. And since I've already tried knitting (for all of 24 minutes), and my knitting needles are lost in the garage, I guess I should try something new.)

Clerk: Yes, how can I help?

Me: Well, I want to learn to crochet. (Show me a book, the hook, and the yarn and I'll pay. I haven't plugged my meter since I've only allocated 5 minutes to this store, and I hope you move more quickly than those fabric store people.)

Clerk: Okay, so we have a number of great books on how to start up's one that--

Me: Great! That one is fine. (Just hand me the thinnest and simplest one with the biggest pictures and let's move on.) What about yarn?

Clerk: Well it depends on what you want to make....worsted-weight...finer yarn...enough for a hat...yada yada.

Me: Which one is best for beginners? Thicker yarn? (Look lady, the meter maid is probably ticketing my car by now, and frankly I could be satisfied by just tying knots in my shoelaces for relaxation, so I'm really not thinking about making hats at this point.)

Clerk: Well, this one is $6.50 and this one is $7.50...there are some really pretty ones over here that are finer...and some people like this one to start, but other people...

Me: Okay, so I need an average size hook, right. Where are the hooks? (Alright, I can figure the rest of this out for myself. Tick tock tick tock.)

Clerk: Oh yes hooks! Let me show you what we have over here....see this one is a 4.5 for finer yarn...and this one's a G...and there are different colors...there only $2 so you could try one of each...

Me: Great! (Bingo! I'll take these random two hooks and be gone. And by the time I get to looking at all this stuff it'll be 11 pm and I won't be able to figure it out anyway.)

Clerk (at cash register): Now we have classes so you can learn with others...mailing list...

Me: I'm good for now. Thanks so much for your help. (No ticket. No ticket. No ticket.)

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Saturday pm edition

In the Arts and Entertainment category:

1. I am oddly disappointed that Hugh Hefner and Holly (girlfriend #1) broke up.

2. I am also disappointed that Chef Robert Irvine embellished his vitae and got sacked by the Food Network (months ago apparently, but news to us). He is no longer heading up Dinner: Impossible, one of Ray's favorite shows.

3. After watching the Al Pacino vehicle 88 Minutes, I feel a little bit sorry for good ol' Al, who seemingly is hired onto a project before they have any idea what they're doing, and frankly don't care. And why should they...once Al Pacino has signed on, a storyline and decent direction are beside the point.

4. I need a hobby. I need a hobby that is relaxing, creative, and can be done while doing something else. It needs to be quiet, mobile, and inexpensive. If it produces a nifty product, so much the better. It must be mindless, but in a nice, creative kind of way. Candidates: knitting, crocheting, hand-sewing. Suggestions welcome.

And on the economic front:

1. There's a small part of me that's not so secretly glad about this sharp economic downturn (crisis, recession, whatever you want to call it). We, gluttonous (and glutenous) America, have finally gotten our comeuppance. And it's going to hurt. And it's about time.

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Blog topics for...someday...probably never.

1. After a month of very limited, naturopath-advised eating, I now have 4 satiation levels, rather than just two (hungry/full).

2. Frozen fruit/almond milk/coconut make the world go round (at least in the last 30 days).

3. Why does the bus never come when I want to catch it. At least I'm getting good exercise walking to my car (parked in Wallingford).

4. After reading some crazy-dense journal articles, staying focused on regular reading is much easier.

5. Putting together spreadsheets for my class grading and assignments is fun. I like me some formulas! (And apparently I need to get out more.)

6. I am already excited about Thanksgiving, my favorite holiday.

7. August is either going to be a Jawa or Boo for Halloween.

8. Ray and I decided today that if the huge nation-states of the world are eventually a thing of a past, and city/state-states are our future, then Seattle, Portland and Vancouver BC (and everything in between) should come together as one country.

9. If my mom is of the over-cooked-vegetables generation, then our generation is everything-al-dente.

10. If McCain/Palin win in November [shudder], the top 5 places I want to move to are 1) Czech Republic 2) UK 3) Canada 4) India 5) Lago di Como.