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Saturday, October 29, 2011

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Just an update

Hi!

I was in Arizona last week for the security conference that doubles as a fantastic women's retreat.  I was so busy at the conference that there was no time to visit the pool.  In years past the conference was held in September and thus the lure of the pool was even more strong - in late October temperatures during the day only hit 95 degrees so you can see why it was easy to avoid.  In all actuality, normally I would have flown in the night before but this whole thing about wanting to spend time with my family really gets in the way of selfish-pool time.  Perhaps I'll be more inclined to work out a different solution next year.    I'll probably have to bring back a treat for the husband that looks like I purchased it for him rather than picked it up at a vendor table.  He's so smart about being able to pick out what was a freebie vs. what is an actual gift.

I got home late Friday and we were up and moving by 7am Saturday.  Lucy has no concept of sleeping in - well, actually for her sleeping until 6:30 IS sleeping in.  We went to breakfast then to downtown Seattle to pick up my wedding rings, that were being sized.  As we walked into the jewelry shop the look on the owners face said it all - the rings weren't there.  Bummer.  However, instead of having to head back down town later in the week or the following weekend the rings were shipped to me via FedEx.  They will be arriving today and require a signature, thus I am trapped in the house like Rapunzel, only with much shorter hair.  The delivery drivers don't tend to linger on the porch once they give the required knock (that is one rap on the door) and I'm not feeling very confident about my ability to quickly but safely navigate my staircase, so there is a silly sign on our door.  "FedEx:  I am HERE, but upstairs, please ring the BELL."  We'll see if it works. (For the record the jeweler was far more mad than I was about the rings not being done as promised and I'm sure he scolded his vendor in a scary way.)

I hated the idea of going to the conference without my wedding rings, so I worked up an alternate solution.  I have a diamond anniversary band from my single girl days and I paired it with the gold wedding band from my grandmother and together I looked sufficiently wed.  I've been wearing it ever since, but I want MY ring back.

After the useless trip downtown Saturday, we had planned to head back home to give Lucy time to nap before going to a birthday party in Orting (aka almost Tacoma).  She fell asleep in the car after breakfast so while I (and Jason's parents) went into the jeweler he sat in the car with Miss "only naps when she wants to" and was on the phone when we came out.  Not any phone, but the "on call" phone. So, we decided to take him to his office, drop him off take Lucy home and then pick him up on our 'way' to the birthday party.  Mind you, these locations are nowhere near on the same route but going home so he could get a car seemed like a waste of time. Famous last words.

I got the call that he was ready and Lucy who had woken up was back asleep so I zipped to Issaquah to get Jason and then we would swing back by the house to get Lucy and the grandparents.  When I arrived he told me to park the car.  (That was a bad sign.)  Apparently, as he finished the first emergency on call ticket and after he had called me, a second emergency ticket came in and he essentially had to start over.  Since he already knew what was required (and how terrible the documentation was) he knew it wasn't going to be a quick fix.  With time running short our plans had to adjust.  So, back home I went to get a second car, the baby and the grandparents.  We all went back to Issaquah and left Jason a car and then we went (without him) to the birthday party of a 1 year old.

Maybe it is because we were late, or because the party was in full swing but the event seemed chaotic and our hosts didn't seem to notice we were there.  We mingled and talked with other family members, helped ourselves to a tasty but tiny taco and got out of the way as a melting ice cream cake was given to the birthday boy.  That was the time that Lucy decided she HAD to eat and so it worked out that as everyone was packed into the living room around the baby, Lucy and I were tucked away in a different room.  I didn't really hate that.    We hung out for a little bit but once I got word that Jason was home I wanted to go home.  (Remember I hadn't really spent anytime with him since Tuesday.)  I felt badly about suggesting to Jason's parents that we go before gifts were opened, but they understood and back in the car we went.  Honestly, I feel like I spent the whole day in the car.  (Renton to Kirkland, to Seattle to Issaquah to Renton to Issaquah to Orting to Renton - yes, that takes a whole day and a ton of gas.)

Once we were home we opted not to cook and picked up pizza.  It was a nice evening at home but around 9pm the day caught up with me and all I wanted to do was roll up the stairs and sleep. We skipped church Sunday and let Lucy play all day.  It was nice, I needed a day "off".

Jason's parents left yesterday and I'm catching up with work.

Photo: Glorious sunrise over the Cascades


Photo: Glorious sunrise over the Cascades: The Seattle Times.

Friday, October 21, 2011

Fictionary

Nerd Bird: Alaska flight 327, Seattle to San Jose. Filled with geeky technology people. The call sign can also be applied to any flight with more than 50% techie nerds.

Fictionary

SHOE-ICIDE: ruining or killing your ability to move be wearing a new pair of shoes. Usually happens to women in shoes with elevated heels. (coined by the Chief Risk Officer from a major NY based financial institution.)

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

I-1183 will kill hundreds of puppies!

If I-1183 passes, puppies will eat this baby!












and....
  • 1000 mini-marts will sell booze to underage drinkers. 
  • A drunk driver killed my child, and that's why I'm voting no on I-1183
  • We already have an enforcement issue, I-1183 will make it worse.
  • If I-1183 passes the terrorists will win. 
In the event you're not from the Washington state area, or you mute every political ad you see, I-1183 is a proposal that would privatize the sale of hard alcohol in our state. Proponents say that it will eliminate government spending on storefronts and allow for somewhat competitive pricing. Opponents say that it will lead to an increase in consumption, drinking and driving and sales of liquor to children.

There are big dollars being spent to sway opinion on the issue, the "YES" people stand to make a lot of money on smaller margins and the ability to market a product people are already buying. The backers of the NO side stand to lose a lot of money by having to give up a standardized markup.

In researching my "facts" about who is paying for what I found an article on the Bellingham Herald webside that says they did some research into the backers:

Protect Our Communities, which is against the initiative, is mostly funded by the Wine and Spirits Wholesalers of America. In fact, of the more than $5 million the campaign has raised, 95 percent of the funding comes from that group. The campaign also has significant union support.

The Yes on 1183 Coalition, on the other hand, gets most of its funding from Costco - 94 percent of the cash contributions, in fact. The rest comes from Safeway and Trader Joe’s. This group has lots in in-kind contributions. Of the 1.3 million in in-kind contributions, 98 percent of the in-kind contributions come from Costco.

(These numbers are all as of about 5 p.m. on Sept. 12.)


Assuming their research is accurate, I stand firmly beside my opinion that ALL the pro and con arguments regarding this issue is about money. However, the NO people can't say "we dont' want it because we'll lose out on money" they have to appeal to our more basic values, and thus "I-1183 kills babies."

The scare tactics work, no one wants kids to buy booze, and certainly no one wants them to drive drunk or be killed by drunk drivers. However, the suggestion that the increased availability of booze will increase consumption is silly. Studies conducted in the last few states to privatize sales showed that there was no increase in consumption of alcoholic beverages (wine, beer AND booze) after the privatization occurred. And, lets not forget that you can buy wine and beer at almost every corner grocery and gas station mini-mart in our great state.

 I have an acquaintance that is against the passing of I-1183. I respect her right to her opinion, but could only hold my tongue for so long when she was spamming facebook with her message about the death of children associated to privatization of liquor sales (it wasn't THAT bad, but since I'm the writer here I get to present her message my own way).

My response was:

With all due respect and honoring your right to your opinion, but I believe the statistics used in many of the NO on I-1183 ads and information being given to our community is skewed. Now, I won't deny that both sides tell the story to enhance their own views, but if you look at the last few states to privatize liquor sales (WA is one of the last holdouts) consumption remained flat after privatization.

I'm certainly not an advocate of anything other than responsibility when it comes to this topic, but I don't see how being able to buy liquor at Costco is any different than being able to buy cases and cases of wine, or kegs of beer. 

Both sides, the Yes and the No people are backed by big money. These backers don't care about our kids, they care about our pocketbooks. I hope people will do their own research and vote according to facts vs. scare tactics. 

This is my opinion and my apologies if this opens an ugly debate. Not my intention, because I'm not good at debate.
____

She didn't reply to me, but her sister did and she opened with " Terri, as a Mother, I...." and then went on to explain that her underage son is already attempting to buy beer at the local mini-mart and while he knows it's wrong he has bad decision making skills.  Therefore limiting availability is good for her.

Blah Blah Blah, I stopped listening after "as a Mother".  That got under my skin as if she was suggesting that only MOTHERS could see reason, or that if you're not a MOTHER that you don't care about children.  Well, as someone who until very recently was NOT a mother I say "phlllltttttttt" to that idea.  I'm sure that was not her intent, but that's what I heard.

As a mother, I need to get back to work, so here is my ultimate point:  please do your OWN research on this issue and make an educated decision when you vote. 

Monday, October 17, 2011

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Friday, October 14, 2011

Yesterday was not my day

I was tired yesterday after not getting a good nights sleep.  I can't entirely blame the baby as she slept until 4am without needing a Mommy intervention, but I woke up at 2am and after doing a panicky crib check (does that ever really end?) I could not shut my brain off and go back to sleep.   We girls to tend to go over every minute detail of every interaction...
In the morning I dressed Lucy in a rather cute outfit and was pleased with her more than normal cute factor.  I fed her, and we had a very big (for me) milestone in that I handed her a "cookie"  (a puffed rice wedge) and she played with it and when I wasn't looking she took a bite!  Yeah, she will someday be able to transition off the bottle.  (Then, like Mommy, she will transition on again, but I have solid food with my wine.)

Feeling good about that, I fed Lucy her regular breakfast and left her in the high chair to clean up.  While I was washing her little bowl I noticed the tale tell (DJ - is that correct?) signs of baby bowel movement.  Yeah!  Poop for Mommy!  Actually, I don't mind and actually prefer for it to happen before we go to school so I know I'm sending her in a clean get up.  The "situations" I hate are the movements that occur in the car on the way to school.  You would think that you could just hand the baby over and smile as you say "she just pooped."  I have done a few diaper changes the moment I get into the nursery - it's only fair.

Anyway, in the super short time it took to gather up the newly fed baby and wisk her upstairs, the situation became more than a diaper change, but a head to toe re-dress and the once cute clothing needed to go straight into the washing machine.  I had meetings to get to otherwise miss poops a lot would have gotten a rare morning bath too.  I could have taken pictures, but I love you too much for that.  Let's just say it was icky.

Once our newly clean girl was safely at school I went home to do some work.  Since I have a home office shoes are not required, but if it's chilly socks are a must.  I headed downstairs to make myself some lunch and lost my footing on the stairs.  I blame the socks, because I wasn't running, I hadn't been drinking and wasn't doing anything other than a normal walking action.

I bounced pretty hard on my butt and slid down at least 3 or 4 risers on my left elbow while grabbing on to the hand rail with my right hand.  My left forearm took most of the action and as you can see I earned a very lovely rug burn.  Thankfully, I broke nothing, wasn't carrying the baby or a cup of coffee, and the hand rail is still firmly attached to the house.

Today my neck and my right arm feel like I helped friends move and my left forearm is quite sensitive.  I've taken some Tylenol and am doing stretches to keep the muscles from tightening up, but I feel sorry for me.  It was a dumb move.
the boo boo
My day did get better. Lucy and Jason were in great spirits, we had family over for a fantastic baked chicken. Lucy stayed up until almost 7pm and for the first time actually seemed to play with Jordan. (I can't wait for those two to become besties.) I slept very well last night - until 4am, when Lucy announced she needed food. I was very impressed that she made it from 7pm to 4am without a feeding.  Impressed until Jason informed me  that I slept through a bottle at midnight. So, instead of having less food, she actually got more. It's almost as if she heard us talking about strategies to stop the middle of the night feedings.

Our dinner plans for tonight fell through, so Jason and I are stuck with pounds and pounds of fresh spaghetti sauce.  Thankfully it freezes and thaws well, but too bad we didn't know we weren't having guests until after he devoted a night to making his yummy sauce. Oh well - we'll be Solo Italia at our casa tonight.  I just hope that I can talk him into drinking the good wine anyway - even without guests.

That's about all there is in the sharing department.  Plus, I need to head downstairs for something.  Wish me luck.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

The wonders of editing

A friend talked to me about using the photo editing features in Picassa to add pizzaz to the pictures of Lucy.

I have to say that I'm a fan!

This original picture was cute but dark, and holy cow look at it now!  Heck, the crusty carrot junk around her nose practically disappears.

Modified to add "glow" and adjust the lighting.
The original
Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

I'm just sayin'

I have these things to get off my chest:

1) On Facebook, if your new ex-BF or ex-GF posts that she's sorry she hurt someone, don't reply with "I'll always cherish our time together". It's awkward for all involved.

2) Maybe it is best to keep all relationship stuff off Facebook.

3) If you give someone advice to man up, accept a genuine apology and move on, you'd better be prepared to do the same thing.

4) In the dryer vent cleaning world an appointment window of noon to 3pm does not mean they will be finished by 3pm.  It's not like work where you schedule a meeting until 3 and you can plan on being somewhere else at 3:15.

5)  Statement #4 probably applies to Cable service people as well.

6) If you offend someone just by being yourself is it your fault or the person who has chosen to put up with you even though they've known you for 20 years?  (Trust me, I didn't teach their baby to say "shit" or anything like that...)

7) A frozen chicken will never thaw in time...

8) I feel bad for laughing at the poor couple who got lost in a corn maze and called 911.  It was dark, the employees seemed to have left and they had a 3 week old baby with them.  Calling 911 was probably smart, but it is kind of funny at the same time.

9) It's not fair that babies grow out of the cute clothes a lot faster than they do the ugly ones.

10) Microwave popcorn always sounds like a good idea, but  rarely is.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Occupy My Couch (armchair economics)

Maybe I'm jaded, but I don't see how 50-100 people sleeping outside in Downtown Seattle will have any impact on anything except keep people from journeying downtown.  I do give them some serious props for holding their rally in October - especially considering the damp fall day we're having.

I've seen some interviews on national media and periodically there's an articulate person who is able to explain the purpose of the occupation. Mostly, to me anyway, it seems like bored college kids who are happy to be involved.

The people do need to rise up and express our outrage - but at what exactly?  This dismal recession and lack of jobs?  Yes, our economy blows (not an economics major, cut me some slack) but I do believe that the growth we were seeing in the early 2000's was out of control and obviously not sustainable.  Some people are still getting rich while others are struggling.   The struggle is awful and I don't have a point of reference - even when I was unemployed for 5 months I was fine.  I had options, reasonable rent and no kids to feed or insure.  

What I'm most outraged about it my naive belief that our government works.  I feel like a fool for continuing to make thoughtful decisions about whom to vote for only to have the folks that are sent to Washington do nothing but spin.  Votes are delayed, influenced by re-election desires and what might make someone else look bad.  The President's jobs bill was to be voted on in the Senate today and before it even hit the floor I was sure that it wouldn't pass. The fact that the votes are entirely on party lines tells me that the defeat isn't about the right thing, it's about the "not HIS thing".    Raising taxes is not a popular idea, and I don't know if it is the right thing to do or not do, but I want to stand on top of my house and scream  "JUST DO SOMETHING!"  

Cut everything - including defense spending.  Give every Senator, Congressman, Secretary, assistant and janitor  who works for the Legislative branch a common salary, heck let's give them all the salary that a teacher with 15 years of experience gets paid in the state of Washington $60,242 plus benefits.  They can get a bump to $62,917 if they get their PhD.   The districts & states that these good folk represent can budget $1500 per month travel monies, and a reasonable budget for office expenses, say $5k per month.   (Now, please don't all over me because you think I'm suggesting that the VALUE of a teacher is the same as a US Congressman - I surely don't think that.  Teachers are far more valuable...duh).

The other thing that pisses me off is how taxes are managed and talked about.  Everyone should pay the same amount, a flat percentage based on income (including alternate equity for those tricky executives.)  The girl behind the counter at McDonald's should pay the same percentage of her pay as the CEO of Bank of America.   Sure there are arguments against that such as the rich can afford to pay more, alternatively by not letting folks write off their charitable donations or mortgage interest then people won't make donations or buy houses - but I think that's crap. I didn't buy a home for the tax write off, I don't donate to the charities of my choice because of the impact to my taxes, it's about need and humanity.  It seems that in the American dialog about taxes the idea of eliminating a tax cut is talked about as an increase in taxes.  Um... no.  If something costs $10 and it goes on sale for $8, when it stops being on sale the price is still $10.  I can see how, since these tax 'cuts' have been in place for ages that it seems like they are permanent, but if they were intended to be permanent, wouldn't the excellent legislators have made them permanent.  (Bwahahahahaha - foolish girl no, they don't have the balls for that.) 

Oh I could go on and on with my armchair economics.  Don't get me started on the highway robbery that is Estate taxes.  We got our cut of that money once - we shouldn't get a second crack at it because Daddy died.

I have to stop typing and go play on the floor with my baby.  It calms me down, much in the same way an animal is good for old people.  I guess that is why new Presidents always seem to get a pet.  "Here, you run this shitty operation, but in return we'll give you this cute puppy."  (Calvin Coolige had a goose, but an animal that does nothing but squawk, attack and poop seems Presidential to me in the modern day.) 

State of the Union

Where does the time go?

Lucy will be 7 and a half months on Saturday.  Still no teeth, which puts Lucy in the "late bloomer" category for teeth sprouting - my research says that she may take her time and not sprout a tooth until her 1st birthday.  I hope not because I want to start giving her some more chunky food and she won't take it now.  Our dentist says that it doesn't matter when the teeth come, but that the order is important.

Even though we don't have pearly white progress, we do have some teething behavior and we try to manage it to keep ourselves sane.  I am also getting her use to the toothbrush in her mouth and we "brush" our teeth during the morning hair session.

Speaking of hair - oh my - that flop of brown hair is getting nutty. We are pulling the most of it up into a single ponytail atop her head and when she will sit still, I can do two.  Super cute.  Her little baby bald spot is almost gone and thankfully, her head is rounding up again.  Unless you're going to hold an infant 24/7 the flat spot on the back of their head is a sign that you've got good sleeping habits.    I'm tempted to trim Lucy's wispy wings but I would hate to cut her hair and have it never recover.  Cousin Jordan (1 year) had a professional baby hair cut and WOW oh WOW was it cute.  The question is, am I a mommy who will pay $45 for a baby hair cut?  I'm not sure, and looking around on line it is difficult to gauge if a kid salon is worth the trip or the price.
Lucy has sprouted again, and I had to weed out all the 6 month clothes from her closet.  She's now hanging out in 9 month and 12 month clothes.  The 12 month PJ's are cute because while she fits in them lengthwise, her feet do not fill out the built in footies.  They are floppy and empty, which I find totally cute.


Oh, and remember that whole "back to sleep" campaign?  Well, Lucy has told us in actions that she will NOT sleep on her back anymore.  In fact, if I didn't know better I would guess that the only time she's sleeping on her back is when she can prop her legs up on the side of the crib so that her butt is elevated.  (That's the only explanation we can come up with for some very random wet spots on her pj's.)

We put her down in the crib in the center and she flops and rolls all over.  She goes to bed at 6 (so very early) and will be placed in the center of the crib, by 6:00:15 she is already on her face at the far end of the crib.  There will be a baby crib check around 9, and she' at the complete opposite end of the crib, and when the midnight-1am feeding occurs she's somewhere else with her head facing a different direction.  I do expect to find her levitating some day (maybe not demon possessed levitation, but that kid is active in her sleep.)

Damn the table leg
Lucy is not yet crawling, but is so close.  Mostly she rolls to what she wants but only seems to roll in one direction (right).  She rolls and rolls until she hits an obstacle like a table leg, couch or wall.  Then she looks at you and yells.  Miss Miriam at school says that she does it there as well, and Lucy is teaching the other babies to squawk in frustration.  I suppose that squawking is better than biting... a small consolation for the teachers I'm sure.   If it weren't for the speed bumps Lucy would get to every item she wants, yes, she'd have to roll around the globe to do it, but eventually she would get there.

I would worry about Lucy's sleep schedule if she was going to bed at 6pm then waking up at 4am for the day, she seems to wake a few times during the night and puts herself back to sleep, there is one feeding/diaper interruption and then she's asleep until 6 or so.  She doesn't nap well during the day, but night time sleep is preferred - at least by me...

Monday, October 10, 2011

Columbus Day

Ah Columbus Day... a holiday that I use to cherish.  It was a secret day off that most no one else had and that made it a little special.  I know that my (former) co-workers with kids and spouses loved a day off that only they had.  A day without obligation.

Today the only reminder I had that it was a holiday was that someone is passing around a kicky image of Columbus with the following note "In honor of Columbus day, let's go to someone else's house and announce that we live here now."

In honor of Columbus day I have worked like a regular person (and done laundry like a regular person with a home office.)  Nothing spectacular.  Sorry Chris - it's just not your year.

Thursday, October 06, 2011

Your weekly dose

Standing with Dad

Mom & me


This is my bolder - LOVE IT


Don't forget my ball with the tags - it is my other favorite.

Sometimes I get to get in bed with Mom & Dad. That's Roger.

Super Cute

Monday, October 03, 2011

Scenes from our weekend including our 10k walk


a severe girl for your living room

Lucy & I at 5am Saturday.

We went for a walk at 6:30 am

Fresh donuts at the Cottage Bakery

We met Yumi for breakfast, Lucy is enthralled by the conversation.

All wrapped up for shopping in Astoria

creepy art

7am - heading to the shuttle bus

ready to walk n' roll across the bridge

Start!

Jen & I are good to go!

The best named rest area in the world.

1 mile to the bridge

Lots of pedestrians beyond that point

finally on the bridge deck.


entering Oregon

4 miles in, heading up the hill

View from the top

Finally at the top of the bridge

Rounding the corner - almost done






Saturday, October 01, 2011

Our weekend...

So far the weekend with the girls has been great. As expected the activities have included breakfast out, tooling around Astoria, shopping, talking and talking and then more talking.
Lucy had a not so great drive down, see the video below. She slept for an hour and a half, cried (screamed) for an hour and a half then slept the last 15 minutes.
Today she has been super clingy and while she doesn't mind hanging out in the stroller she does NOT want to be on the floor alone. It does not matter if I am 2 feet away...it's nice to be loved but damn Momma needs to pee.