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Archive for moon (rachel)

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:

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.

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.

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.

bleacher bums

Oh, my achin’ back. Moon’s school has a huge pops concert at the end of the year, and it’s the music department’s biggest fundraiser. Well, the concert was last night. The school gym is transformed into a cafe, and box dinners are available for pre-order. The thing is, when all the tables and chairs are taken, the rest of the audience has to sit in the bleachers.

Guess who arrived too late to get a good seat?

The concert was quite excellent, although the between-number skits were rather cheesy. All the orchestras and choirs perform, as well as the percussion ensemble and jazz band. The seniors present gifts to the teachers. What I’m trying to say is that it’s a long concert. We were there for four hours. Does today’s back pain mean that I’m getting old? (Yes.)

One of my favorite parts of the concert was when the orchestra played “Pomp and Circumstance” towards the end. At the dramatic points in the music, the seniors in the orchestra stood. Then the choir seniors stood. I don’t even know these kids, and I nearly broke into tears. I am going to be an absolute mess when Moon graduates. First I’ll have two more years of crying about other people’s kids.

azkaban update

Ravenclaw Azkaban scarf

Yep, I’ve finished the Ravenclaw POA scarf, and I think Moon is pretty happy with it. She wants to be suitably attired for the opening of the Goblet of Fire movie. We’ll be attempting to get tickets for the first day, since school will be out for conferences. I can’t wait. Over the summer, Friday was typically our movie day — I’ve missed going to the theater with the kids.

Moon re-read the sixth book as a warm-up. I’m reading the first book over again, and my plan is to read the second, third and fourth one before November 18. That might be a bit ambitious, but oh well. (I mean, didn’t most of us read Book 6 in 24 hours or less?)

Hufflepuff in progress

Now I’m working on a scarf for Peter. At first, he was asking for Slytherin colors … but he thought the better of it and went with Hufflepuff instead. (Maybe he was afraid people would throw stuff at him in the movie theater?) I’m really liking the colors and how the stitches show up in the butterscotch areas. I think I might make one of these for myself with the leftover yarn. Hufflepuff is my house, too, you know.


I really like this photo. It makes all those hours of stockinette worthwhile.

school registration

Moon’s registration for high school was actually pretty cool. (I wrote about it elsewhere. Let me know if you want the link.)

When I took Peter to middle school registration a few days later, it didn’t bring on such feelings of nostalgia. More like raw dread… as when we were being taken around to the classrooms by a 7th grader who pointed out the detention teacher, prompting Peter to respond, “I guess I’ll be getting to know her pretty well.”

I *think* he was kidding.

Anyway, for those of you who are awaiting parenthood (Jeff) or watching your sweeties go off to kindergarten (Sis#1)… Moon’s registration set me back $101 for fees, and Peter’s was a whopping $280 (including bus fare). Plus about $150 for their school supplies. Start saving your pennies!

clean sweep

Singing along
Originally uploaded by me.

We had quite the busy day on Friday, which also happened to be Pete’s 40th birthday. He celebrated by taking Moon to her extra bass lesson and then donating blood. We also gave him some alone time while we shopped in the afternoon and baked a cake. Pete chose Imperial Gardens for his birthday dinner. It was all very nice and low-key.

Peter had his first drum lesson Tuesday, and Pete realized he’d better retrieve the drum set from the back of the basement this weekend. More than six months ago, we crammed most of our extraneous items into the area that we didn’t plan to finish. Until yesterday, it was almost impossible to get to key household implements such as the water heater.

It took some squeezing to get to where the drum set was located, snugly tucked away in its dust-covered cases. I stood and watched, overwhelmed with the mess and disarray. Once the drum set was out, it seemed logical to move on to vacuuming and dusting the next item. Sorting the piles of junk nestled between boxes. Moving shelves and boxes to newly-cleared areas.

By dinnertime, I’d taken a whole carload of junk to Goodwill. We now have usable storage space. Have I ever mentioned how much I love that sort of thing?

Today, as you might surmise from the photo, was Moon’s master class at Good ‘n Loud. It took place at the new store on the east side of town, and I must say, it’s quite snazzy. Pete served as lead singer for most of the songs. Moon made an impressive showing. And we even had additional family in the audience — SpiritMan’s mom and Sister #3 drove up for the afternoon. (Their hearing still seems to be intact, thankfully.)

14 years ago today

This little munchkin arrived and changed our lives forever. Although it would have been a lot easier if we’d have been able to communicate right from the start, it was interesting and rewarding getting to know her and figuring out her special ways.

She’s still as opinionated as she was back then. (And trust me, babies can be opinionated. Even when they are 2 hours old, like she was in this picture.)

Sometimes it floors me how quickly the time has gone. Back when I was a new mom, I would ask other parents to please tell me again that thing about how babies grow up so fast. Maybe I just figured that once Moon was talking, she could give me some pointers or something. When she started forming words at about 8 months or so, I extracted every bit of meaning that I could.

Can I even begin to say how amazing it’s been getting to hang with this kid for the past 14 years?

Even if I weren’t her mom, I’d be compelled to point out how beautiful, intelligent, funny, talented and kind she is. Being 14 and all, she has a hard time seeing all of that in herself, but it’s there.

Happy birthday, Moon. I’m so glad that you joined us here on earth.

no contact(s)

After Moon’s initial experience with contact lenses last Friday, she hasn’t even attempted to get them back onto her eyeballs again. In fact, she has pretty much decided they’re not for her. Later today, we’ll be going back to Eye Contact to give them the news (and look at new glasses frames).

In the meantime, we succeeded in distracting Foxxi from her empty tummy this morning, and she’s spending the day at the vet’s office getting her teeth cleaned. It’s eerily quiet around here now. All week the temperature has been in the 90s, so we’re not planning on outdoor activity today. Nope, we’re going to the movies.

Friday isn’t just my day off anymore. It’s the kids’ day off, too. Moon has been cooking dinner for us every night, and Peter is responsible for setting the table and making sure the living room is picked up before Pete and I get home from work. They each get daily chores as well. Yes, we are paying them, but it’s less (far less) than what we used to pay for summer day care.

Sweet deal, eh?

In other news, my oldest nephew turned 23 yesterday. I’ll say it again: 23. I still remember the day he was born… his mom had a c-section, and I was in the waiting room with my dad. Brother #1 had been pretty shaken up by the way things had gone. He called us as soon as he found out the surgery was going to take place, and we came right over to offer support.

Of course, I had no clue what potentially comforting words I could say. But I do remember how incredible it was to see my nephew for the first time. He was my initiation into the wonderful world of newborns.

Update: Moon made a last-ditch effort to put on her contacts right before we left for her appointment, and she succeeded. So it looks like she’ll be ditching the glasses after all. We also didn’t make it to the movies, but Foxxi sailed through her teeth cleaning like a trouper.

safely home, but discolored

Just a little red
Originally uploaded by me.

Moon’s 8th grade class trip to Six Flags Great America was apparently great fun, but the heat and sun took a toll. (That’s what happens when you inherit the genes from the Irish/German side of the family, along with the red hair and milk-white skin.)

While she was enjoying roller coasters and a cushy charter bus ride, Pete and I went to Peter’s school to watch him get his 5th grade completion certificate. I kept thinking about how we’ve been involved with the elementary school for nine years in a row, and now it’s over.

Next fall, I’ll have a high schooler and a middle schooler. I’m still trying to wrap my mind around that.

Peter to friend, while waiting in line for cake and punch: “This year, we’re like gods. Next year, we’re at the bottom of the food chain.”

more fun on the square

Originally uploaded by me.

Pete and I went to the Farmer’s Market again on Saturday — two weeks in a row, can you believe it? This time Angelica tagged along. We bought more bakery items, which kind of cancels out my 45-minute daily walks. But life is short, and you’ve gotta support people who leave their farms at 2 a.m. to make a three-hour drive to Madison. Especially when they make scrumptious twisted cinnamon pastries with maple frosting. (See more farmer’s market pics here.)

Saturday night was the Pride Prom at Shabazz, and Nicole invited Moon. They went as a group with Nicole’s sister Aimee and a few other friends. (No, not a date.) Earlier in the day I took Moon shopping, and she ended up with black pants, a black blazer, a narrow red tie and a black pinstriped fedora. Very cool. I like her style.

green day

It was an early birthday present for Moon: her first rock concert. As soon as tickets were on sale for last night’s Green Day concert, I nabbed three. One for Moon, one for her friend and one for a parental chaperone (me). The concert was sold out, and it was general admission, so we arrived a half hour before the doors opened. After we were searched and all that jazz, we went into the coliseum where I grabbed a few seats while the girls went to talk to a friend in the mosh pit.

The opening act was My Chemical Romance, which is another one of Moon’s favorites. Moon and Nicole ended up about 15 feet away from the stage — I stayed in the old people’s section, where I could see everything without getting kicked in the face.

I have to say, it was an incredible show. And it seems to have opened a whole new world for Moon. I think she’s going to be one of those people who go to a LOT of concerts.

She wore her new Green Day shirt to school today, and has been spreading the gospel of Billie Jo to anyone who will listen.

rock and roll sunday

Moon’s self-portrait
Originally uploaded by moi.

A lot of other stuff happened this weekend, including Peter’s birthday (he’s 11) and a related visit to JM and Nichole’s for games, but today was a day for loud music, and lots of it. Pete offered up his voice (including a surprisingly effective rendition of “Back in Black”), and inspired me to get up to the mic for “I Love Rock and Roll.”

Yes, I guess it was kind of like karoke for parents.

One kid who must have been around 9 or 10 not only played guitar, he also got up and sang. We couldn’t believe how much confidence he had — and he wailed. I probably should have taken more pictures, because in 10 years when he’s on tour, they might be worth something.

fun with makeup

Makeup #1
Originally uploaded by D’.

So Moon calls me the other day when I’m at work, and tells me, “Guess what? I’m wearing makeup.” I’d bought her some eyeliner and eyeshadow (at her request), so I assumed, okay, she’s getting interested in girly things.

“I took a few pictures of myself with the digital camera,” she said.

She was over at her friend’s house when I came home, so I peeked at the camera’s preview window.

Huh. Not so inspired by Marilyn Monroe. More like Marilyn Manson. That’s my girl.

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