inicio mail me! sindicaci;ón

Archive for family

i’ll be at the house of blues

Tonight I’m going with Moon and two friends (Brooke and Matt) to see Nightwish in Chicago. Originally I was going to drive and chaperone, but Brooke’s dad said he’d drive if I’d endure the music. (Kidding! I actually like Nightwish. They are like Abba, if Abba were heavy metal.) Should be fun. I wonder if the kids will dump me as soon as we get in the doors. They’ll have to if they plan to push their way up front and dance with the sweaty masses. We shall see.

Brooke’s dad will probably read a book during all the excitement. I’m super relieved that I won’t be driving, because I’m not the best at finding my way around Chicago, and I won’t have to worry if I nod off during the 3-hour trip back home. Plus, I can probably get a lot of knitting done during the drive down there.

Currently, I’m working on two projects: a felted shibori pillow modeled after KnitPicks’ Sticks and Stones pattern, and a scarf using Fleece Artist Sea Wool. Easy, repetitive stuff. I bought Zephyr’s Juliet pattern but I don’t have yarn for it yet. I also bought sock yarn so I can make socks for both Pete and Moon. Lots to keep my hands busy.

sounds nasty, but moon will like it

Elvis Reese'sOkay, so now The King is inspiring candy bars. I saw these at the PDQ this morning and immediately wished I had my camera with me. Fortunately, Rakka is the kind of person who is willing not only to take a picture, but to actually sample peanut-butter-and-banana infused candy.

Many thanks for the borrowed image! Lord knows I’d never try this variety of Reese’s. I hate bananas. Once, my mom made a chocolate cream pie and didn’t tell me there was a layer of bananas over the crust. Very traumatic.

don’t step on her blue suede shoes

Have I mentioned that MoonChild has become quite the Elvis fan? She’s been collecting vintage metal posters of him, and lately she’s been all over eBay trying to find various memorabilia. Today she’s wearing Elvis buttons on her sweater. I just stopped typing this post for a few moments to help her hang a full-body poster of him on her bedroom door. She’s going to cut out paper hearts to tape up all around him.

Is this how mothers felt back in the 1950s?

SpiritMan and I were at a wedding reception on Saturday, and the conversation turned to moody kids. (Turbo.) I told the people at our table about one of Turbo’s anger fits recently, and how his sister said, “When I’m feeling upset, I try and think about what makes me happy. I think about Elvis.”

Woman we’d just met: Oh, is that a family pet?

Me: No, she’s referring to THE Elvis. Elvis Presley. Yes. And she’s 16 years old.

Everyone else at the table:

gone dancing

Class was really fun, but somehow we messed up the starting time and arrived a half hour late. The other couples had already been working on some steps – we had to try and catch up. I noticed most of them were wearing gym shoes. SpiritMan and I had driven all over last night trying to find appropriate shoes, and we finally succeeded at Rogan’s, 10 minutes before closing. Coincidentally, the manager was a former ballroom instructor and knew all about proper footwear. He was pretty awesome. I was just glad to find some workable shoes that didn’t have 4-inch heels.

So, we were late to class, and I was surprised to see one of my co-workers there with his wife. Do you ever have those moments when you see someone out of context? I said I was there to tell him one of the servers was down at work, because I’m endlessly hilarious. He knew I was kidding, but he looked a little concerned for a second.

i think it’s the weather

I’m in an unusually good mood today. How could I not be, clad in handknit socks and a cozy sweater? We have some interesting things to look forward to this week. Tonight is our first official Voluntary Simplicity small group meeting. SpiritMan and I will be shopping for slippery-bottomed shoes afterwards, as we’re starting a Latin dance class tomorrow night. (Nothing like last-minute shopping after talking about simplifying, and why does typing “slippery bottomed” make me feel slightly dirty?)

On Saturday, we’ll be enjoying barbershop music as a show of support for my vocalist dad. Then we have October birthdays at the Homestead on Sunday. There might even be leaf-jumping.

guess how many retainers?

Answer: 4.

The first one was stuffed into his pants pocket, then broken cleanly in two when he flopped from the sofa onto the floor. Just messing around.

Number two is somewhere at the Seattle-Tacoma International Airport.

He removed the third one at school before lunch, put it in his pocket (again!) and got up without replacing it in his mouth where it belonged.

So the fourth will be ready on Thursday, and the dentist informs us Turbo has set a new record.

we also bought wine glasses

It was a quiet afternoon yesterday, so when Sister #3 called to tell us she and her boyfriend were headed to a nearby winery, SpiritMan and I decided to join them there. Wollersheim Winery is only about 20-25 minutes from us, but this was our first time there.

Store at WollersheimIt’s a lovely place in the middle of the country, and I was surprised by how many people were there. We enjoyed some wine tasting and decided we wanted a bottle of the River Gold – sweet, but not too sweet. The four of us went outside to the terrace with a bottle, some cups and the snacks they had packed (cheese and crackers). Let’s hear it for spontaneity!

The autumn colors were beautiful but seemed out of place in the 85 degree heat. I’m ready for some actual cool weather. (More pictures here.)

first weekend in october

Moon’s going to Geek.Kon today with a bunch of her friends, and then the aforementioned friends will  behaving a non-Homecoming party. At JM & Nichole‘s game night last night, we found out that JM and his game-making buddies would be there, too. Sounds like fun.

SpiritMan is having someone over to the basement sound studio to make a meditation tape, Turbo is concentrating on Halo 3, and I want to knit. It’s supposed to be in the mid-80s today, which kind of takes the fun out of it being October, and puts a damper on my fall activities such as knitting with wool and baking pies.

new driver on the road

Moon passed her road exam with flying colors. Not that she was perfect, but even the DMV guy said that she did much better than average. So she’s already way ahead of me if there’s ever a worldwide Good Driving Olympics.

I still remember my first driver’s test. The car stuck between gears, and I panicked. It seemed like the only thing to do was to jump out of the car and get my dad from the waiting area. Except the car was still moving (slowly) in reverse. The examiner yelled at me to GET BACK HERE AND PUT THE CAR IN PARK. After he put me through my paces, he informed me that I had failed before I had even started, what with the panic and the jumping out.

“NEVER get OUT of a car when it’s MOVING,” he emphasized repeatedly. I slunk over to my dad and told him it was time to go. Outside, I refused to get back into the car, announcing very dramatically that I would forthwith be swearing off all vehicular activity. Because cars were evil and didn’t like me. And I was 16 years old and full of drama.

Not like Moon, who is 16 and has a better attention span than I do at 45.

some things

  1. I’m posting from Flock, which is my new favorite browser. It’s based on Mozilla but has a whole lot of social networking functionality. Plus, it’s pretty.
  2. Speaking of pretty, I bought a pink cover for my Razr phone. I’m not usually rocking the pink, but it’ll make me smile when Pete needs to borrow the phone and I can picture him with all that girliness next to his ear.
  3. First day of school tomorrow. I think we’re ready. I told Peter last week that if he manages straight A’s, I’ll get him a laptop. And holy cow, if I had known how much that would motivate him, I’d have come up with it sooner. He’s definitely smart enough; we’ll see if the follow-through happens.
  4. The four of us went to see Superbad yesterday and barely got to the theater in time. When we pulled into the driveway afterwards, we were surprised to see Foxxi standing on the front porch. She had somehow gotten out as we were leaving, and faithfully stood by the front door for over two hours. I’ve been freaking out thinking about it, because she didn’t even have her collar on. We owe a debt of gratitude to her guardian Corgi angels.

that charming smile

I’m having a hard time getting a decent photo of those teeth we spent so much money straightening, but trust me, they look pretty good. But check out the other change that took place over the past year and a half…

Our favorite technician
No more braces

Dude kinda grew. When did that happen?

The full set is here. I’m still working on capturing an actual smile on film.

no, school isn’t out yet

But after this week, things will settle down a bit. Last week was craazy. We were all involved with a concert at church on Tuesday. Rehearsals had been going on for about a month, and the dress rehearsal was Monday. Moon and Pete were both among the instrumentalists, and I was a backup singer (one of the 9 “Dreamtime Singers”).

The concert itself was on Tuesday. We all wore pajamas, as the theme was Lullabies and Dreamsongs. Very comfy! We had a good sized crowd — maybe 100? — and my parents even came up for the event.

Moon’s school had its annual Pops Concert on Wednesday (rehearsal was Tuesday, before the other concert, so we rushed from one side of town to the other). It went until 10:30 p.m., and I teared up during “Pomp and Circumstance” like I always do. Two more years until I have good reason.

Friday was awesome fun, because we met JM and Nichole for a visit to one of my favorite restaurants. They’re eating at every Madison restaurant in alphabetical order, and this week they shared their dining list. Friday’s choice was one I didn’t want to miss. (My review wasn’t exactly unbiased, but hey.)

Yesterday, Pete and I took the car to have an iPod player installed — it was going to take two hours, so we decided to take a walk. I remembered there was a Starbucks nearby, but it ended up being about 2 1/2 miles away. The good news is that we passed the time and burned whatever calories are involved in walking 5 miles. The bad news is that there was trouble with the installation, so we left without our new player. I’m hoping for good news Monday, when the installers can call the manufacturer.

Today I mowed. And mowed. We’ve been borrowing a gas mower from our excellent friend Vicki, because Pete has had shoulder problems and I’m not keen on letting him use the old-fashioned reel mower. I’m also not keen on using it myself, because I don’t like spending 3-4 hours on the lawn. After I finished our yard, I went over and mowed Vicki’s while she was at work.

This week Moon has finals, and Peter has a few short days. I’ll be playing chauffeur, but at least our evenings will be fairly sane.

In other news, I’m working on socks for my sock pal, but that’s another post.

weather warning

This week, the atmosphere over Madison, Wisconsin seems to have had multiple personalities. Hot. Cold. Rain. Sun. At least the snow has melted and doesn’t seem to be coming back.

Last night, we all went to a concert — but Moon decided at the last minute not to go. As we were buying our tickets, my cell phone started vibrating; I saw the call was from ‘Home,’ so I answered. “There’s a tornado warning,” Moon said. I asked her if she was freaking out. “No,” she lied. I assured her that we were in a safe location, and told her to stay put in the basement.

After we hung up, her friend Brooke (who lives two houses away) arrived, having braved the storm to keep Moon company. They brought all the animals to the basement with them, and set up camp at the computers. Where they happily surfed and IM’d, venturing upstairs only when their provisions had run out. Fortunately, the storm passed without incident. I’m glad Moon has such a good friend.

best possible outcome

The doctors looked at FIL’s arteries yesterday, and one was very blocked — but they were able to wiggle a wire in there and insert a stent. And it worked very well. I saw pictures!

So they’re going home today. FIL is better off now than he was before, because oxygen is getting to all of his heart. He had problems breathing before and was using an inhaler, but now they’re thinking maybe that was a symptom of the blockage. Also, the heartburn he’s been prone to having probably was angina all along.

I’m sure they will be so glad to be home again. MIL can come and stay with us anytime. She’s a great guest.



It kinda looked like spring was here last week — but not now. When we picked up MIL from the hospital Friday night, the snow had already started. Saturday it kept coming, so Sister #3 and her boyfriend packed up some stuff for my in-laws and drove to the hospital to meet them with it. (She has a Jeep, which is rather handy.) So MIL is staying with us until FIL is released from the hospital. He’s actually doing pretty well, but the tests indicated that he had a mild heart attack Friday morning.

Today we’re all staying put, because almost everything in the area (church services, etc.) has been cancelled, it’s windy and drifty outside, and it’s still snowing. I already made brownies, and there’s beef vegetable soup cooking in the crock pot. Pete is baking bread, and I’m planning to make walnut cookies later. MIL is sitting in the comfy chair sewing on buttons and doing various repairs for us. The kids have been chatting with her, and it’s just a comfy day being here together.

FIL is calling periodically to check in. Some of the hospital staff didn’t even make it to work today, so he’d rather we stay put for the time being. Sister #3 brought him his portable DVD player, some DVDs and books yesterday, so at least he has some entertainment.

Knitting BagIn other news, I ordered a new knitting bag after about a week of pining for it online. (It’s from Persnickity Design.) Check out how groovy it is. Glad those mail carriers are willing to come through rain, snow, sleet, dead of night and so on.

thanksgiving weekend

All is well, actually. We made our traditional dinner at home, which the kids have come to expect and revere: green bean casserole, mashed potatoes, whole grain bread, sweet potatoes, and Tofurky. And what do they love most? The tofurky, of course. We also made pecan and pumpkin pies, which turned out marvelously, if I do say so myself.

On Friday, we headed to Sister #2’s house, which is about a 3-hour drive for us. We rolled birthday celebrations into the holiday, so we came bearing gifts. The highlight was when the littlest nephew unwrapped his present from us. We gave him a singing, dancing Pablo of “Backyardigans” fame. Moon picked it out — she obviously made a good choice, judging from how many times we got to hear the theme song issuing from Pablo’s mechanical innards.

He gave hugs and kisses when we left, and even Moon had to admit he was cute.

I keep thinking “Backhooligans” for some reason.

lazy sunday

Moon and I went to church this morning with visions of Caribou Coffee campfire lattes dancing in our heads. Yes, Moon is drinking coffee these days — she just prefers the kind that has lots of milk and/or sweetener in it.

I think this is going to be a routine of ours. Very motivating.

Since we had a perfect sunny fall day, we took Foxxi out for parkies (walkies in the park). Moon rode the swings for a while, and Foxxi rolled in the rocks, the grass, on the sidewalk, etc. It was a very happy time for a cooped-up pup. After we came home, I sat outside and worked on my crocheted hand towel. (I finished it after dinner.) I’ve been knitting and crocheting so much today, my knuckles are tired.

My other accomplishments this weekend: more yarn (without going overboard), a new swimsuit for water aerobics, and my first trip to the new Trader Joe’s.

woo hoo! november begins…

And I’ll start the month on a happy note, because Moon made a last-minute decision to go trick-or-treating yesterday. Otherwise, this would have been our first Halloween with non-costumed* kids. (Peter stayed home, which he regretted when he saw Moon’s haul.)

The cool thing is that I get all the Tootsie Rolls. They’re not as glamourous as other candies, but they’re my favorite anyway.

*Technically, she didn’t wear a costume. Just lots of black, with fang marks and bruises created from my makeup stash.


NaBloPoMo is coming, so I figure I might as well warm up. Even if it’s all pretty mundane. Why shouldn’t my blog reflect my life, right?

So … Moon is taking the PSAT today. I only had to do one car trip this morning instead of two, although it looked like I was going to have to go back to the high school in my pajamas to bring Moon her ID so she could get into the test room. (They let her in anyway. Can you imagine the horror that is your mother at your school in mismatched PJs?)

Hey, I wear a coat and I don’t usually get out of the car, so no big deal.

In other news, have you seen Heroes on NBC? We watched the 4th episode this week, and it rocked so hard. Good thing there’s Television Without Pity so I could get caught up.

Moon wants this shirt.

So You Think You Can Dance!

Donyelle and Moon

As avid fans of talent-based reality shows (i.e. American Idol, So You Think You Can Dance, Hell’s Kitchen), we were quick to buy tickets when we heard that SYTYCD was going on tour. They stopped in Milwaukee last night, and it was a fantastic performance. I enjoyed it even more than the Idols concert in August. For one thing, the venue was smaller — Milwaukee Theatre — and more intimate.

Afterwards, as you might have guessed, we stuck around to try and meet the dancers. We were greatly rewarded for our patience, because every one of them came out to greet the fans and sign autographs. (The lovely Donyelle posed with MoonChild, as you can see here.) Moon had created a custom ‘Team Tranji’ hat and Dmitry t-shirt to wear, and was thrilled to get them signed. She was also able to get her program autographed by nearly all the other finalists, too.

You can see the other photos here. If you’re at all familiar with the show, it’s worth taking a look.

P.S. That Dmitry, he’s the same age as my nephew. And he’s like solid muscle. Arms like rope, or tree trunks, or something.

« Previous entries · Next entries »