Saturday, June 28, 2008

Celebrate Good Times! Come on!

Or is it "Celebrate! Good Times! Come On!"? I don't know.

I do know, however, that I am no longer the mother to any babies. Yesterday was Abby's fourth birthday, and her little chest has been puffed out all week with the abject thrill of being four. She wore a crown all day yesterday, and when people called her a princess on the BART, she eagerly - and loudly - corrected them, stating that she was The Birthday Girl.

She received a TON of great loot - gardening supplies, puzzles, beach toys and a tool box with real, grown up tools. When she opened the toolbox, her eyes widened and she said, "Oooh, look at those wrenches." She's been stealing Leo's tools to take apart our futon, so she's pretty psyched. I'm so glad she's interested in tools - my "toolbox" was always a kitchen drawer with a rock, hammer, and butter knife in it. I was also relieved that when she got excited about the wrenches I knew which tools she was talking about. It's embarrassing when a preschooler knows more about a subject than you do.

Today she's suffering from a little birthday hangover. She asked if we could "separate" her birthday, so that she could have a bit of it today. I put a birthday candle in her pasta, but that wasn't enough. It's a little short notice to order a magic show, so she's out of luck.

Isaac the cat is suffering a bit of the birthday hangover, too. This morning, he started running maniacally around the apartment. I noticed a silver ministreamer floating jauntily from his butt. Gagging, I had to restrain him to remove it - he was so freaked out that he wouldn't stay still. It was so supergross, I still shiver thinking about it.

I'm feeling a bit maudlin, too. At seven, Emma is all bony elbows and scraped knees. Abby is losing her chipmunk cheeks and her leg rolls are all gone. The only time I wish I were pregnant again is when I'm cleaning the litterbox, but oh my god do I miss their little larvae bodies, their soft weight on my chest as they slept as newborns. It's not even that I miss having a baby - I miss Emma and Abby as babies. I miss those little babies so much, even as I cheer every new thing my big girls can do, even as I imagine myself at their high school graduations, missing their small seven and four year old selves.

Monday, June 23, 2008


According to KTVU, 21% of atheists say they believe in God.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Or Do They Golf?

Every once in a while, we watch Deadliest Catch, a show about king crab fishermen (is there a nongendered word for this job?). Fishing for crabs in the Arctic is really hard, really dangerous work - one might even call it Deadly. It's freezing, slippery, and the waves are HUGE. It seems like most of the hauling is done at night, since the traps are laid in the morning. They finish bringing up the traps, drink a beer, smoke a few cigarettes, and collapse in their bunks.

Here's what I'm wondering: for most guys with the same socioeconomic/gender/sexual/racial identities, there are few things more enjoyable than drinking a few beers and listening to classic rock while fishing on a boat in the middle of some lake.

Do the Deadliest Catch guys fish for fun? Or are they like OH HELL NO?

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

In the News

I'm having a bit of writer's block. We've mostly been spending our time swimming. Emma's school ended on Friday, so she and Abby have been having turf wars all day. Which is not to say that we've been bored, per se....

Saturday I took the kids down to Santa Cruz to go to the Boardwalk and watch fireworks. They didn't start until 9:30 (two whole hours after the kids' regularly scheduled bedtime), so the kids were tired enough to lay quietly on the beach while the fireworks boomed overhead. We had spent the previous hours riding the rides - Abby went on the kiddie roller coaster for the first time, and I forced them to go on my favorite ride, the Cave Train, which is indescribable.

Parenting is largely frustrating and messy, but there are times with your kids that are just sublime, and this was one of them - our feet in the sand, fleece blanket covering us, their sticky faces sleepily watching the sky.

Monday afternoon, we went over to San Francisco City Hall to watch people get married. Sure, there were protesters, idiots claiming that they knew what God thought about love, and that they had the right to ruin someone else's day (I imagine that these are the type of people that go to dinner parties and completely dominate conversations with their right wing crazy). But mostly? It was beautiful. The band played "Going to the Chapel", and the City Hall is just this gorgeous building. I cried like a baby, and Emma handed these guys (is there nothing you can't find on Youtube?) a note that said "congratulations! love, Emma" with hearts and a smiley face.

Yesterday and today, the university started to remove the tree people's platforms and supply lines. One of the protesters, Millipede, bit an arborist, and is now in custody. As I write this, helicopters are circling over our apartment, and the ruling just came down that the trees won't be cut down. I have such mixed feelings about the protest - I admire the commitment, and the idealogy behind the decision to live in a tree for a year and a half. I even agree that the trees shouldn't be cut. I just wish they picked a cause that would truly change the world for the better - why didn't they take to the trees to protest the war? Genocide, child abuse, slash and burn foresting? Just do a quick Google search for "Chevron South America" to get a good reason to sit in trees. And Chevron is local - why these trees, that were planted as shrubbery when the university was founded? The kids, however, fully support the tree people - Emma was horrified to know that one of the police officers that she really likes is working against the tree people.

Yesterday, I had an ovarian cyst burst. Major suckage, and my first sick day here. Still, we had dinner at our friends' house. They're originally from Germany, and have only been in the States for six months. Somehow, we got on the subject of movies. I told them about how Lloyd Dobler set my romantic aspirations pretty high. They'd never seen Say Anything, which was called Teen Lover in Germany. How can you explain how the sentence "I gave her my heart and she gave me a pen" meant so much?

If you think they didn't get the reference because they're so much classier than us, listening to Bach and eating stollen in a little sidewalk cafe in Berlin, rest assured, they are not - they introduced us to this German artist - the lyrics to this song are simply, "Kitty litter, kitty litter, makes a kitty happy."

I spent the rest of the night begging their third grader to let me play his Wii, while Abby destroyed almost all of their daughter's Barbie accessories. We are excellent dinner guests, I tell you.

Finally, we got a washer and dryer! We were told we'd have one by the end of last February, so we've been living week-to-week, only doing absolutely necessary laundry. I've been washing clothes that I had forgotten we had - it's like I've been on a shopping spree!


Wednesday, June 4, 2008

I Love This!

Why do you need to read Oprah's lists when you've got my lists of awesome things?

1. The Secret Lives of Stormtroopers. OK, I don't give a shit about Star Wars, but I would love to pose little dolls all day.

2. My friend Jenn and her friend Melissa started selling cute little bags. If you look at the bags they've already sold, I've got the lemon owls one. So (sew!) cute. And little! If you don't like any of the current patterns, just check back later - they add new bags constantly.

Sew Bendy @ Etsy

3. David Sedaris has a new book. Yippee!

4. Lois Lowry's Anastasia books for kids. Not the maybe princess. Anastasia is a sassy 10 year old who lives in Boston and loves Gertrude Stein. And talks to a bust of Freud. I plan on reading the series to Emma this summer.

5. Trader Joe's Salty Caramels. Huzzah!