Archive for September, 2007

TV time

So I watched the new “Bionic Woman.” I watched it even after I found out “Private Practice” was on opposite and I love me some “Grey’s Anatomy” (which premiers tonight!). The previews of the show looked great and I really wanted to like it.

I didn’t.

It just fell flat for me. It felt as though they stuffed a two-hour pilot into one hour and I just couldn’t warm up to any of the characters, even though I really liked Michelle Ryan from what I saw of her on BBC’s “Jekyll” The writing was bad and the story made little sense. Nathan wants me to give it a second chance, but I’ve seen too many good shows get pulled after only a few episodes so why bother getting invested in a bad show?

On the other hand, Nathan and I wound up catching “Dirty Sexy Money” and were hooked before the first commercial break. Great characters, great writing and a great cast.

So what’s on tap for tonight? “My Name is Earl” and “The Office” (yay) which is on opposite “Grey’s Anatomy” so I guess I’ll be recording something to watch later because you know I have nothing else to keep me busy.

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“Honey, mama has to put these jammies on you.”


“C’mon, sweetie, it’s going to be cold tonight. You have to put something on.”


“Hey look at Elmo.  He’s wearing jammies too.  And his jammies have polka dots just like yours do.  Don’t you want to wear jammies like Elmo?”


“But Elmo wants to make sure you’re warm tonight.  Oh for crying out loud, let’s just put these freaking jammies on.”

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Conversation with a toddler

This morning as I dressed Autumn, she leaned in for a hug while I buttoned up the back of her shirt. I sighed and squeezed her.

“I love you, sweetie,” I whispered.

“Poo poo,” she whispered back.

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The truth

I’ve been feeling the need to write more lately. Ever since I started this blog I all but abandoned my regular personal journal. A couple weeks ago I tried to pick it up again and started typing an entry about all the stuff I’m not comfortable sharing here. I wasn’t able to complete the entry and wound up losing interest in everything I was was saying. The entry is just sitting on my hard drive as an uncompleted orphan and I have no idea if I’ll eventually finish it or if it will find its way to my recycle bin. Once you start something like that you pretty much have to see it through. Like many other things, I’m good about getting started but not so great at finishing.

Yesterday I joked that I dropped my Thursday class because I don’t want to miss my TV. That’s only partly true. I love “Heroes” and am looking forward to the 2007 incarnation of Jamie Sommers, but the truth is I just could not keep up with the assigned homework. It was a business communication class and was all about writing proper memos, resumes cover letters and lord knows what else. I wasn’t going to stick around to find out. I thought I’d have fun because the class was, technically, a writing class. I was wrong. It was stifling and unbearable.

I like the other class I’m taking very much and in it I am able to exercise my creativity. It is also a writing class, but one centered around page layout and design. So far I’m pretty excited about what we’re doing and what we’re going to do. It has me thinking about things differently and is just the thing I need right now. My entire work day revolves around data entry. I sit in front of a computer and type and type and type until my hands ache. It’s a wonder I’m able to keep up with this blog the way I do.

When I was finishing up my undergrad degree, I was working at the factory. I remember a conversation I had with with my adviser about the job. I was embarrassed to tell him what I did for a living. It seemed so blue collar and I wanted him to think of me as someone who could potentially some day be a peer. Perhaps not a college professor, but someone who made a living from writing.

My adviser surprised me by saying that the factory was probably the best place for me if I wanted to be a writer. He advised that if I wanted to write, to write stories that is, I shouldn’t aspire to find a job that would involve a lot of writing. He was afraid a writing job would deplete my creative energy. What I was doing at the factory required little or no thought, and if I didn’t have to think about the work I was free to think about other things. What he said was true, because since I started working at the university I haven’t written a single short story. Granted, I’m not writing for a living, but data entry can be a bitch and the last thing you want to do after spending 8 hours in front of a computer is go home and spend even more time in front of the computer.

And yet here I am in front of the computer.

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Nathan was in a crabby-ass mood this morning. He claims it was due to various aches and pains but I’m pretty sure it’s because it’s the end of the week, our groceries are low and I’ve put the kibosh on his use of his cafe card.

The cafe card is like a credit card of sorts for the various eateries where Nathan works. It’s used in lieu of cash and whatever purchases you make with it are deducted from your paycheck every week. It’s pretty handy and I suggested he get it because I imagined his purchases with the card would be easier to track than the multiple withdrawals of cash I noticed on our bank account statements.

I think he’s had the card for a few years now, and I’ve come to find it rather shocking how much he spends on food while at work. Most of the time he doesn’t want to hear my complaints, and up until he started a new job where he’s running from plant to plant all day, his purchases weren’t extremely exorbitant; twenty to thirty dollars for a two week period. Still more than what I spend on food stuffs at work but not enough to cause me to make plans to file Chapter 13.

The weekend before last it all came to a head when I decided to work on balancing the checkbook. When it came time for me to enter the stats for his most recent paycheck into our computer program, I scanned the miscellaneous deductions category and screamed, “Forty-seven dollars for food service?!” Now whenever I scream out a number like that to him he’s all in denial about how much he actually spent, and this time was no exception. “No way,” he said, but I handed him the copy of his pay stub and pointed out the glaring truth with a look that just dared him to explain this away.

“It’s mostly for breakfast,” he said. “We never have anything for me to eat.”

Huh. Last time I checked, eggs, bread, bacon and milk were all breakfast staples and all things we frequently have in the house. When I asked him how I managed to find things to make for breakfast every morning and he did not, he retorted with a question of his own.

“You make breakfast every morning, but why don’t you ever make me breakfast?”

Ah, so there’s the rub. It’s not that he didn’t want to eat what we had in the house, he didn’t want to have to make anything with what we had in the house. He wanted to be served, much like Autumn and I are every evening when he makes dinner, which was part of his argument. He’s the cook and just once in awhile he wants someone to cook for him, especially if it allows him a few more minutes of “me time” in the morning.

Our argument got kind of heated, with me explaining that I have enough trouble getting my own ass out the door on time every morning without having to worry about his breakfast and why doesn’t he just spend less time in front of his computer before work and more time in front of a frying pan?

The argument ended with his vow to cancel the card, especially since he learned he spent just over $100 with the cafe card for the month of August alone. The two of us together have been really bad with the food expenditures. We’re talking non-grocery items like breakfasts, lunches, snacks and any other meal when we’re too lazy to cook. From May to August we spent about a thousand dollars on stuff like that. That’s on top of our weekly grocery bill. No wonder we’re so broke sometimes.

So there he was this morning, cranky, hungry and spreading peanut butter over Aunt Millie’s light 5-grain bread. I wanted to take pity on him and say it would be ok to use the card today, but I imagined that would be akin to giving an alcoholic a bottle of vodka and suggesting one sip wouldn’t hurt. Before you know it we’d be citing “excessive use of cafe card” and “breakfast neglect” as reasons for our legal separation.

Ah well, maybe his mood will improve tomorrow. I usually do make him breakfast on the weekend.

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Just a few random thoughts and observations…

  • Everyone’s bringing in their surplus cherry tomatoes from their gardens and they’re very sweet.
  • Speaking of produce, I really hate that Costco’s not carrying bags of frozen mango anymore. Now it’s a “mixed fruit” blend of melon, two kinds of peaches, strawberries and blueberries. Not a mango in sight.
  • Speaking of Costco, have you ever noticed how you’ll get really attached to something they carry and then then it just up and disappears? Like mushroom-stuffed ravioli and popcorn shrimp.
  • Autumn and I are having pirogies for dinner tonight. I’m dropping my class so I can stay home and have potato-stuffed pasta with my daughter. Not a bad trade-off if you ask me.
  • Nathan will not be having pirogies because Ryan talked him into a bowling league on Thursdays. That’s kinda also sorta another reason why I’m dropping Thursday’s class.
  • Autumn totally surprised me yesterday in the toy aisle of Target by repeating the word “ba pak” over and over and I realized she was actually saying “backpack.” Thank you, Dora.
  • Yesterday I also found out she knows the word “hot dog.” Or is that technically two words?
  • The real reason I’m dropping Thursday’s class is because I’m lazy and cannot possibly take time to learn stuff when “Heroes” and “The Six-Million Dollar Woman” start this week. I also miss my daughter and would rather have her kiss me good-night on the cheek instead of having to kiss the phone.

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Four words

“I love you, mama.”

She said that to me last night out of the blue and clear as day.  Just looked up at me and said it while we were watching Flushed Away.

I immediately broke down crying. It was the best day of my life with her so far.

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I have a feeling I’m not going to be able to post as much as I’d like to.  The instructor of my Thursday night class seems to take her position as adjunct professor very seriously and assigned an obscene amount of homework.  I left the class last night really, really wanting to drop it, but I’m determined to stick it out this semester.  Having the university pay for my tuition is very nice, but it also allows me to continue to be lazy if I don’t want to do the work and I’ve not really wanted to do a whole lot of work since Autumn was born.  I’m not really keen on plastering another withdrawal to my transcript so I guess I’ll just stick it out for the next 12 weeks.

Speaking of class, Autumn’s first Kindermusik group went well, I think.  She was really reserved and somewhat grumpy at first, in spite of sitting next to two people she knows very well; Marla and Conner.  I think she was just a tad bit discombobulated by the unexpected change in our routine because I picked her up from daycare after work and brought her right to the church where the group is held.  She was like, “Wait a minute, woman, aren’t you supposed to be bringing me home so I can play with my own toys instead of sitting here banging two sticks together?”

During the class she asked for her Spongebob blanket multiple times, but I had to leave it in the hall so as not to cause blanket envy amongst the other toddlers.  That wasn’t much of a problem this week because she didn’t actually see me leave the blanket in the hall, but the moment she becomes aware that she’s being separated from the blanket there will be hell to pay.  Her attachment to that blanket is such that when we wash it we have to make sure she doesn’t see us transfer it from the washer to the dryer because she wants that blanket NOW.  I can explain all I want about how Spongebob has to take a tumble and will be ready for her in about 10 minutes.  She does not care and every second she’s separated from that blanket is an eternity.

After asking for her daddy a few times during the first half of class, she seemed to have found her spark after we danced together.  After that it was as if I’d just spoon fed her sugar because she would not sit down and that’s usually how she acts during Kindermusik.  She still doesn’t interact much with the other kids, but I don’t know if it’s her age or that she’s an only child.  It’s interesting how some of the kids seem very pleased to be in a room with others their age.  Autumn hasn’t really made that leap yet, and when I think of it she is the only 2 year-old at daycare.  The others are at least a year or more older or a year or more younger than she is.

Still, I’d favor that company over no company at all.

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Culture and stuff

School has started, and while I do have homework assignments to complete, things haven’t gotten too overwhelming that I can’t enjoy a leisurely evening of watching one of my favorite B-movies from the past; Clash of the Titans.

I’ve been wanting to watch the movie since Blockbuster mailed it to us a few weeks ago, but one of the things about having a toddler is that any television you watch while the child is awake should be animated or contain friendly-type puppet creatures instead of mythological beasts with two heads or freaky snakes for hair. Autumn freaks whenever the big purple monkey appears in the “Elmo’s Potty Time” DVD we’ve been showing her so I’m pretty sure Medusa would give her nightmares indefinitely. She certainly scared the bejeezus out of me when I was a kid.

I’m sure next week will be a different story as far as free time goes. Autumn starts up with Kindermusik again on Monday. I’m really looking forward to it and to seeing how the group dynamics will have changed with a room full of toddlers instead of the birth-18 months group we spent time with last spring. Autumn loves music and I hope that by dong this Kindermuik thing we’ll be fostering a real love for the arts.  I would love nothing more than to be able to one day talk with her about literature and music or even Clash of the Titans, because if that isn’t art, what is?

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Light-weight? As if!

NerdTests.com says I'm an Uber Cool Light-Weight Nerd.  What are you?  Click here!

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