30 October 2009

The Weekend- Halloween!


Happy Friday y'all. Happy Halloween! I have to admit that Halloween usually is one of my favorite holidays, but I'm just not into it this year. We didn't get pumpkins, I took old milk jugs, filled them with orange colored water and drew on faces. No dealing with rotting pumpkins for me this year! LN has a bee costume, but isn't going Trick or Treating. Really, she wouldn't get it. And I wouldn't let her eat the candy yet anyway. Eighteen months is a bit young for a Snickers bar in my opinion. Call me a party pooper. So here's to a safe, warm, happy Halloween.
  • Tonight I'm headed out to play some Bananagrams with my lovely lady friends. Should be a rockin' good time.
  • Saturday morning the Mr. is running the Monster Dash Half Marathon and the little lady and I are walking the 5K. I'm going as a 80's prom queen. Princess cut, purple velvet prom queen. Should be fabulous.
  • We may take LN up to grandma and grandpa's for a little candy handing out fun. She's got to show off her Bee Costume!
  • Turning back the clocks. I hate this time of year! Now instead of getting dark at six it will be dark by five. Excellent.
  • Watch the Vikings game, I'm guessing. Maybe I'll be able to run and do some shopping?
That's it. We really don't know what the weather is going to do so we haven't really made any other plans. We like it that way sometimes. So we can feel like we still live by the seat of our pants.

Halloween plans?
What are you dressing up as?

29 October 2009

Confession #2


Confession time folks. There are many, many things that the world doesn't know about me and here I am telling you one at a time. You may remember my first confession, the enormous pile of laundry on my floor. The pile is still there, but only because I'm doing laundry today. Interestingly enough the pile doesn't sit there for long any more. Every time I see the pile I see all of you shaking your finger collective fingers at me. You are all great motivators!

So today I'm going to divulge just how much of a dork I am. Really. Many of you know me in real life and can probably attest to this fact, but I'm here to tell you today that I am a much, much bigger dork than you can imagine. Here's why:
  • I've read MANY Star Wars books. We're not talking about just the six that the movies were made about. Oh no. We're talking about series and series of books that take place AFTER the movies are done. Shall I divulge more? Luke becomes a Jedi Master and opens a school for Jedi Warriors. Leah and Han get married and end up having twins. Chewy goes back to his home planet and if I remember correctly becomes some kind of government official. Good stuff.
  • One of my favorite TV shows of all time is Golden Girls. When we were living in China we had a great DVD shop that had pirated DVDs for sale and I bought entire seasons of Golden Girls. And watched them while eating Oreos on the couch. And then I brought them back to the US because I still watch them. In order of course!
  • I don't own a curling iron, my blow drier folds in half and is sporting about an inch of dust and I'm not sure where my brush is. I guess that's to say that my 'beauty' regime consists of this. Brushing my teeth. Putting on deodorant. Running my fingers through my hair, in front of the mirror optional. Add earrings and we're done. If I'm feeling particularly frisky I'll put on some mascara. Ooo, aren't I pretty?
  • Often when I have some glorious alone time I head to the book store. And read cook books. No lie. I sit with a stack of new cookbooks and read them. When I'm done with those and I have time I start in on the cooking magazines. Seriously, there are some good things in there! I owe all of my cooking prowess to reading thousands of pages of cookbooks over the years. I seldom write down a recipe and I seldom follow a recipe directly. Instead I get ideas of flavors and pairings. Hm, you put A with B? I can do that and I'll even cook it C. I also blame it on the reason why I'm some-odd pounds overweight.

So there's my confession for today. I'm a dork. I actually enjoy the science fiction movies that the Mr. 'makes' me watch. I draw the line at Star Trek however. Those guys are just weird.


28 October 2009

Daydreams


LN and I had a morning at home this morning. Well, first we dropped the Mr. off at work and then went to Target...in our PJs. We weren't planning on stopping anywhere, I HATE to leave the house in my PJs, but I needed a last minute thing to finish a project I was working on and it was either go home, get dressed and go out again. OR. Just f-in' stop and pick up what we needed. So we did. Man, did we get some funny looks! I in my red, snowflake PJ bottoms and she in her teal with little birdie footie PJs. Not one of my finer moments.

But I digress.

I was putsin' around the house when I started to think about all the things I'd like to have. I was getting down to the nitty gritty stuff like more money, time, car... No my brain went a little more fantastical, here are the things that I would like to have or see happen. Please, if you have the ability to achieve any of these, this girl would be more than grateful.
  • Martha Stewart reads my blog. I went off on a wonderful daydream where Martha Stewart announced on air that she frequently reads my blog. She thinks it's wonderful! Insightful! Clever! Within the hour I have twenty thousands hits and a book deal or two.Sponsors who want to advertise. Newspaper/magazine/television interviews. Please insert Rachel Ray, the View ladies, Bonnie Hunt or any other daytime talk show celebrity. But I'd prefer Martha.
  • Toys with homing devices. I thought about this for many moments as I ran after the Tiny Toddler Tornado named Little Nib. Toys that know how to go 'home'? Can go from the floor/table/chair to the exact location that they are supposed to be? Brilliant. Let's not focus on the fact that at some point said toys could end up revolting and killing us in our beds. This is my daydream, not a science fiction novel.
  • Self washing clothes. I have wrote at length of my hatred of laundry. Why hasn't someone invented clothes that wash themselves? Or at the very least don't need washing. I pay good money if I never had to venture down to the basement in order to keep my family clean. Well, I'd still wash underwear. Somehow I don't think self-cleaning underwear would take off.
  • Live in Nanny/Personal Shopper/Housekeeper. Just someone to do all of the things that I don't want to do. Like dust. And laundry. Someone who will stay in the house in case of emergency so that the Mr. and I can go out for a drink. Someone to fix dinner when I've forgotten to or don't feel like cooking and will also run to the store when I've inadvertently run out of sugar and want to bake cookies. At midnight. Please remember that money is an issue, so the ideal candidate would work for sloppy toddler kisses, smiles, and the occasional home cooked meal. Shouldn't be too hard to find someone, right?

What/who would you like in your daydreams?

27 October 2009

Guest Post: They Are So Cute When They Are Sleeping


Hello inter-friends! Why don't you head over to my friend Kate's blog and check out my guest post. A word of warning, it's a blog full of real, honest, blunt stories of parenting. Kate is a mom of adorable twin girls and has no problem telling it just like it is. Are you still reading this? Go check out my post!

26 October 2009

Monday, Monday

It's sunny, it's Monday, my house is a mess and I have two weeks worth of laundry to do. Thanks flu bug for F-ing up my week. So I thought I would share a couple of quotes that I found appropriate. Enjoy and here's to having a fantabulous week!

Do not confuse motion and progress. A rocking horse keeps moving but does not make any progress.
- Alfred A. Montapert

We cannot be happy if we expect to live all the time at the highest peak of intensity. Happiness is not a matter of intensity, but of balance and order and rhythm and harmony.
- Thomas Merton

The future is something which everyone reaches at the rate of 60 minutes an hour, whatever he does, whoever he is.
- C.S. Lewis

23 October 2009

The Weekend- October 24-25


I thought I would do something different on this snowy, October afternoon. A little video I took from my bedroom window. Those whiteish things you see going sailing past? Yep, those are big, wet clumps of snow. Luckily the ground is warm enough still that it melts as soon as it touches anything. Whew! I'm not mentally ready for a white ground cover yet. Talk to me around December 24th. Then we may be able to strike a deal.

So this weekend is going to be a good one! Want the details? Well here they are:
  • Hot date with the Mr. On the docket. Toys R Us, a movie and dinner.
  • We should have been going to the theatre (but some airhead that writes this blog...not naming names...forgot the tickets were for the 21st, not the 23rd. Oops.)
  • Movie suggestions?
  • Driving to the country to visit my family!
  • Sun and fifty degrees tomorrow!
  • A walk and some coffee.
  • A fire.
  • Lots of good grandparent and auntie time.
That's about it folks. We're still recovering over here and will be taking it easy. But the rest of you? Go out and enjoy your weekends to the max!

Seriously though, what should we go see tonight?

22 October 2009

Four Years


Today the Mr. and I have been married four years. Whew! We've both been fighting this nasty flu bug and have had barely even a second to think about it. Since I'm not one prone to sappy sentiments and overly long displays of love and affection I thought that I would offer you a quick list of four things about the Mr. and I:

  1. We've had four official addresses: Well five if you count the sh*t hole of an apartment the Mr. had before we moved in together officially. So we lived in the cute St. Cloud house that was conveniently located equidistant from campus and the bar (and both of our jobs). From there we moved to our swanky Chinese apartment on campus in Shaoxing. Two bedroom, two bath and complete with security guards and two Western toilets. Then we moved into his parents basement. Much nicer than you'd think and stayed while we figured out what the heck we were going to do. Pregnant, jobless and recently home from China. Five months later we moved into our present house. Perfect in every way; not too big and not too small with just enough space for the three of us.
  2. We are addicted to Netflix. The Mr. and I don't have cable. In fact we haven't had cable almost the entire time we've been together. Hot Fridays nights are when we dog sit for his parents and can watch the History Channel and Food Network to our hearts content. So we found a replacement in Netflix and watching COMPLETE television series. Here's a selection of the series we've watched: Six Feet Under, Scrubs, Bones, Battlestar Galactica, True Blood, The Office (both versions), Arrested Development, How I Met Your Mother, Chuck, The Tudors, Weeds, etc, etc.
  3. We both have a bad case of Wanderlust. We have itchy feet. BAD. We're always on the lookout for our next place. We love our families dearly and love the relationship LN has with her grandparents and cousins, but...but... Places we have seriously considered moving: Portland, OR, Ankara, Turkey, Shaoxing, China, Hangzhou, China, London, England, Bern, Switzerland and that's just off the top of my head.
  4. We're both fiercely independent/stubborn. I would say to a fault if I didn't love this fact about both of us. Now it leads to much squabbling; but also to much respect and space. We leave plenty of time for each other to do our own thing AND spend time together. The Mr. has his writing classes and I have my nights out. Together with dates and Family Time with LN we're kept pretty busy.

Thanks Mr. Here's to at least fourty-four more.

20 October 2009

Take Two and Call Me in the Morning


We've been hit by a bug. All three of us. The Mr. went to work this morning but is on his way home now. I've been on the couch all day, which is fun with a toddler, let me tell you! LN was great all morning playing and watching Melmo, but then at nap threw a huge fit. I'm thinking ear infection. Poor babe.

As I try and nurse our way back to health I thought that I would share some of the things I do when I'm sick. Some are for physical health, but mostly these are just ways to get me to sit down and relax; so let's say more for mental health.

  • Drink lots and lots of fluids. Duh, right? My drinks of choice are hot water with lemon/honey and lots of Emergen-C. In fact I swear by this stuff. I drink it nearly everyday, sick or not. It's refreshing and chock full of good stuff. Plus it tastes pretty yummy too. LN calls it 'Mommy Juice.'
  • Eat whatever you want. Whenever I'm not feeling well my appetite goes out the window, so I give myself full reign to eat whatever sounds good. Ice cream? Good for the throat. Apple sauce for dinner? Excellent for digestion. Frozen pizza? Well, at least I'm eating something. ;)
  • Stay in your PJs. After LN was born I made a rule that as soon as I got up in the morning I had to put on 'real' clothes else risk never leaving the house. Since then we have not had one PJ day. So now, since we're both sick I sit here typing in my PJs; it feels great!
  • Watch movies. It's hard for me to sit still, even when I'm not feeling good so when I'm not I pop in a movie and sink my butt in the couch. Granted at one point in my life I actually watched something other than Melmo, but now any moment of peace I can get I take.
  • Have a sick time ritual. When I was little my mom always let us drink Kool-Aid out of this special cup. We never got to use the cup or drink Kool-Aid unless we were sick. When my twenty-one year old sister came down with the flu last week that was the first thing she asked for. I'm still trying to come up with something for LN.
  • Take a shower/run a bath. Wash all of those icky germs away and relax those muscles. I don't think anything feels as good as a hot, hot shower when I'm sick. The steam is good for congestion too.
  • Take something to help you sleep. More than anything else a good nights sleep or a good nap will make you feel better. If that means that you have to take something, take it! You'll thank me in the morning.

What tried and true remedies do you have when you're sick?

19 October 2009

Pick your battles


I'm not the type of person to face conflict easily. I would much rather let an issue die of it's own accord than try and remedy it on my own. Not to say that I'm completely spineless, but I would much rather choose my battles that try and take up every one that comes along.

This is not a new motto for me. When I started working and had to deal with douchey co-workers/bosses my dad told me to, "Pick your battles, why extend all of your energy on something that doesn't mean that much to you?" It was just something that kind of stuck. It made sense to me. My time and energy is precious, I don't have enough to go around fighting for every little thing that bothers me. Really, it made me evaluate what I believed in, what I was willing to fight for and helped me define who I was as an adult.

After I got married the "Pick your battles" mantra became even more important. Well, I should say after the Mr. and I moved in together. By that point we were both pretty sure that this was going to be a long-term thing and I for one didn't want to F-it up. So I quickly learned which habits of his I could live with and which truly set me off. Leaving his cereal bowl in the sink with milk in it? Not worth the hassle. Dropping his coat on the floor as soon as he came in the door? A battle I couldn't live with and more importantly, a battle I knew I could win.

That's the other beautiful part of this mantra. Learning to Pick Your Battles also helps you find solutions to problems. It teaches you to look for the fights that you can win, and in marriage this is generally a good thing. That doesn't mean that ALL of those other battles in life aren't worth pursuing because the going is going to be rough. It allowed me to weigh the issue and figure out if it was really worth a fight; while the milk in the cereal bowl thing annoys me to no end, it doesn't really take much effort on my part to empty it out and stick it in the dishwasher the same time that I stick in my bowl. Fight not worth having.

As LN grows up and becomes more and more independent I'm finding that I am repeating my mantra more and more times everyday. She's a smart little thing at eighteen months. She knows when she is doing something naughty and likes to see just how far she can go with it. She also has definite ideas of what she wants, when she wants it and how! Cake for lunch is a battle I'm willing to fight, but if she wants to only eat cottage cheese for a week straight...well I guess that's just a battle I'm willing to let go of.

I think keeping this saying in mind has made me the mellow, laid-back person that I (think,hope) I am. It certainly has taken much of the stress out of my life.

Which battles do you let others 'win'?
What can you just simply not let go?

16 October 2009

The Weekend- October 17-18


Happy weekend everyone! Is it sunny where you are? If it is go and stand in it for a minute, for me. Maybe if all my readers stand in the sun for one minute for me I'll feel some kind of warmth on this gray, Fall day.

So we had a busy week doing this and that and falling down and this morning we ran to Ikea. I have been wanting to pick LN up a step stool so that she can see what I'm doing at the kitchen counter and help me as much as she can. I also wanted to get her a little tent to play in; somewhere she can get away and read to her baby or just simply take some time away. Let me tell you, she is in love! She ran back and forth from the stool to the tent over and over...who knew a tent and a stool would make a toddler so happy? Why couldn't a tent and a stool make me that happy?

There's not much on the docket for the weekend yet. That's ok by us! Let's see what we've got so far:
  • Special Saturday morning breakfast tomorrow. I'm trying out quiche recipes for a baby shower I'm co-hosting next month. I'll keep you posted as to how they turn out.
  • I would guess a walk might be in order since it's supposed to be sunny! Perhaps to the Stone Arch Bridge and around downtown.
  • The Mr. and I are going to drop off LN with grandma where she's headed to a wedding reception and a sleep-over at grandma's house. Thank goodness for grandparents!
  • While LN is dancing her heart out the Mr. and I are either headed to St. Cloud to visit some friends or we're sticking around town to do some projects and a little datey date.
  • Sunday brunch with the grandparents and we'll pick up LN.
  • Maybe hit up a park since it might be close to sixty degrees AND sunny!
  • Naps for all (well, Dad and LN...cleaning/computer time for me)
  • A trip to the pumpkin patch at some point?

What are your plans for this weekend?

15 October 2009

Jokes of the Day


In hopes that what was my really wonderful day will return I am presenting for you all two jokes that I hope will brighten your day; whether you need it or not. Enjoy!


"A woman was walking down the street. Without warning, she was accosted by a particularly dirty and shabby-looking homeless woman who asked her for a couple of dollars for dinner.

The woman took out her bill fold, extracted ten dollars and asked, "If I give you this money, will you buy some wine with it instead of dinner?"

"No, I had to stop drinking years ago," the homeless woman replied.

"Will you use it to go shopping instead of buying food?" the woman asked.

"No, I don't waste time shopping," the homeless woman said. "I need to spend all my time trying to stay alive."

"Will you spend this on a beauty salon instead of food?" the woman asked.

"Are you NUTS!" replied the homeless woman. "I haven't had my hair done In 20 years!"

"Well," said the woman, "I'm not going to give you the money. Instead, I'm going to take you out for dinner with my hubby and myself tonight."

The homeless woman was astounded. "Won't your husband be furious with you for doing that? I know I'm dirty, and I probably smell pretty disgusting."

The woman replied, "That's okay. It's important for him to see what a woman looks like after she has given up shopping, hair appointments, and wine."




A woman with a headache went to her medicine cabinet to find a bottle of Advil.
She did exactly as the bottle said.
Take two and keep away from children.

14 October 2009

Duh! #3


So today's Duh! moment is brought to you by my own stupidity and my mother.

So I was trying to get LN and I ready to head out to a play date this morning and I was walking around, quickly, in my brand new, black, kitten heels. I was thinking, "I can't wear these today, they are WAY too slippery." Well, famous last words because I hit a patch of water and down! I went. It was painful, it hurt like hell, I screamed, and may have squirted a few tears. Well I was talking to my mom and planning on going to buy an ankle brace. She told me to take one of my scarves and wrap up my ankle to stabilize it until I could get the brace on it.

Duh!

So if you find yourself groaning on the floor of your kitchen and your little lady crying for 'Melmo' crawl to your closet, grab a scarf and rig yourself up a makeshift ankle brace. Thanks mom!

13 October 2009

Apple Butter


There is a great discount food store not too far from where we live. I admit to going there weekly, mostly for their great produce. This summer I was getting farm grown red peppers four for a dollar, bags of spinach a dollar a piece and portobello mushrooms as big as a plate four for two dollars. They often times have organic milk/cheese/yogurt too, for a fraction of the price. Mike's Discount Foods on Central in Columbia Heights. Great place.

Last week when I was in there perusing the produce section I noticed five pound bags of locally grown apples. One dollar a piece. I grabbed two. I had planned on breaking them down last week (peeling, coring and slicing) to put in the freezer but in the rush to leave and whatnot I never got around to it. Well that brings us to yesterday when I was perusing my usual favorite websites when I came across two delicious sounding recipes. Breakfast Apple Granola Crisp from Smitten Kitchen and All Day Apple Butter from All Recipes. So last night while the Mr. was at his writing class I got to work. I put a new disc of AMCs Mad Men in the MacBook, got some newspaper, a knife and a peeler and was ready to go. It was nice really; quiet house, good drama, productive work, comfy PJs. In then end I had over sixteen cups of apple slices. Some I put in the fridge to make the crisp in the morning, a couple more cups I put in a bag and stuck in the freezer. The majority of them I put in the crock pot overnight with some sugar, cinnamon and cloves and let it do it's thing.

This morning we woke up to the house smelling like apple pie. It was Awesome. I stirred the apples, hit it with my immersion blender and left the top off for another couple of hours to let it reduce a little. Simplest thing I've ever done. Voila, apple butter. I've added the recipe below. It's the perfect thing to make with all of those apples you've gotten from the orchard. The best part? It even freezes.

Apple Butter
adapted from AllRecipes.com

  • 5 1/2 pounds apples - peeled, cored and sliced
  • 4 cups white sugar
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
Place the apples in a slow cooker. Mix the sugar, cinnamon, cloves and salt with apples, make sure every apple is coated with sugar mixture.

Cover and cook on low overnight (approximately eight hours).

In the morning uncover, stir, blend (in batches in blender or immersion blender) until desired consistency is reached.

Cook, uncovered, stirring occasionally until mixture is thick, around four hours.

Spoon the mixture into sterile containers, cover and refrigerate or freeze.


12 October 2009

Merry Christmas?


So I'm back from sunny and warm Portland. What did you all do while I was gone? Did you go over and check out my guest post? You really should, and leave a comment for Michelle over there, she's lovely.

For those of you fortunate enough not to live in the northern regions of the US, we are getting snow. Yes, SNOW...lots of snow for this time of year. Upwards of two to four inches to be exact. Luckily the ground is still warm so the streets/sidewalks will clear themselves and the ground accumulation shouldn't last more than a day, if we're lucky.

Being the hardy, normal Mid-Westerners that we are LN and I decided to run some errands this morning. (Plus I got to wear my brand new boots. They are warm, sturdy, cute and fantastic.) We headed to the grocery store to pick up some tea and a paper and then we headed over to Home Depot. I wanted to get some plastic to put on the porch windows and also get a new snow brush for the car. Snow brushes are one of those thins that we seem to go through once a winter. Every spring we are limping along using a broken snow brush. How do they break? Who knows, but it's good for the snow brush industry! Anyway, so while I was in the snow brush aisle (yes, there is more than one choice, I got the one with a telescoping handle, just in case you wanted to know) I decided to grab a bucket of ice melt too. The BIG bucket. I hate buying that sh*t and every time it gets icy and you need it the stores run out. Don't even get me started on that one, we live in MN, remember? Well I get the nice young man to help me heft it under the cart and we head to the checkout. The cashier is a nice older lady that says that she will call someone up to help me heave the ice melt into the car. Sweet. I love having kids; believe me, that would've never happened if LN wasn't sitting in the cart!

So the nice young guy came up to help us and he was in FULL snow gear. Winter coat, hat, boots, and mittens. Now mind you LN is in a winter coat but no hat/mittens and I have on my boots (because I love them) and a jean jacket. It's only thirty-two degrees people! Anyway, he heads out to our car with us to help unload it. I rush around trying to find a spot big enough in our little yellow Ford Focus that will fit a huge bucket of ice melt. Front seat it is. I get LN out and he grabs the bucket. I'm putting LN in and he throws (literally) the ice melt into the front seat. I shut the door for LN and he says, "Have a good day, Merry Christmas."

Wah?

I sh*t you not, he said Merry Christmas to me as he was leaving. I think I stared after him for at least a minute. Now I know stores have their Christmas displays out already and it's STARTING to look more like Christmas. But it's not. It's mid-October. Can we remember that for a moment please? Mid-October. I don't want to hear Merry Christmas until at lease, at LEAST December first. Then you can Ho-Ho-Ho all you want.

09 October 2009

The Weekend- October 10-11

Happy Friday y'all! As you sit here reading this I am off in Portland, OR visiting a dear, dear friend from college. She's due with her first baby (a girl!) in February and I am so excited to see her cute little bump. What are we going to do? Well, I don't know but I am pretty sure that it will include some or all of these things:

  • Lots of eating of delicious food.
  • Movies; at home and in the theatre
  • Coffee and other warm, autumnal drinks
  • Bookstores
  • Baby shopping
  • Chatting
  • Laughing
  • Generally having a good time.
Hope you all have a fantastic weekend!
See you Monday! :)

Guest Post: Oh, Mishka


Go and check out my guest post at one of my very favorite, inspiring blogs: Oh, Mishka. Michelle is a darling and hers is one of the few blogs that I read every morning while I drink my coffee. Hurry, add her to your Google Readers!

08 October 2009

What I'm doing...


I have a list of things to do that is about a MILE long today. In order to keep tabs on myself I thought I would share the fun with you inter-friends. Words of encouragement, disbelief, amazement or praise are not only greatly appreciated, but needed!

To Do Today:
  • Pack for my upcoming trip! I leave tomorrow AM, early and have yet to pack a single thing.
  • Check-in for flight and print boarding pass.
  • Write a guest post for a dear friend who is lucky enough to also be going out of town.
  • Write another quick, guest post for a lovely little site that loves lists as much as I do.
  • Work on a sweet project for this here blog, you'll find out more details soon. It's exciting!
  • Sweep kitchen and dining room floors.
  • Kill flies.
  • Unload and load dishwasher.
  • Switch laundry. Fold/put away?
  • Figure out what the heck to make for dinner.
  • Pick up next month's book club book to read on the plane.
  • Condition leather shoes.
  • Write out list of possible activities for LN and the Mr. while I'm gone
  • Set my alarm.
  • Auto-post Friday blog post.
  • Finish Thursday blog post.

Whew, I think that's the most important ones. I better close up shop and get to it!
At least I've got one crossed off now!

07 October 2009

Vampire Love


So I guess I will come clean and fully admit to my vampire addiction. I read all four of the Twilight novels (and Midnight Sun, Twilight from Edward's point of view) in five days. My dear friend and I are headed to the midnight showing of New Moon. The Mr. and I just started watching HBO's 'True Blood'. I'll out him too...he's just as into it as I am. I have the theme song running through my head and I can't wait for the next disc to arrive from Netflix. The Mr. thinks it's because I'm part Romanian and have family that lived in Transylvania. He even tells a story about how my uncle So and So was turned into a vampire. Or was it he was Dracula? I can't remember, the story is always evolving. Then last night while we were watching 'True Blood' it occurred to me that if the Mr. was sleeping all night then LN and I would be left unprotected (From what? Details.) When I mentioned this to the Mr. he totally saw where I was going. So he told me I could get a vampire boyfriend; just so that we would be protected twenty-four hours a day. Pretty smart on my part, no?

I don't think I'm the only one with a new found love of vampires. The recent boom of vampire books, TV shows and movies (have you seen the trailer for the new Cirque du Freak: The Vampire's Assistant? Looks lame.) has to have a reason. I mean, seriously? I get that vampires are hot, they are either bad boys or real gentlemen and both of them are pure danger. There has to be some other reason why people (women especially) feel so drawn to vampires.

So I was thinking this morning (as it turns out, while I was folding laundry, snap!) about this very situation. The connection between women/vampires and all. I was trying to form some sort of theory. Finally it kind of hit me. Women (generally, not always) want to be needed. Moms want to be needed by their kids, wives by their husbands. Isn't there a stereotype that all women want to change their men so that they are solely dependent on the women for their survival? Well, how much more needed could you be if you were needed for someone's sustenance? People talk about the bond that forms between parent and child; the child is dependent on the parent for everything, including food. How much pull do you think two adults would have if one of them was dependent on the other for food? Interesting question. To be needed for the very life force of another being; well, that's kind of sexy. The whole can't be around during the day? That works too. The woman gets a ton of time to herself to do what she wants and then as soon as the sun goes down she has her man. Sweet set-up really. Even the spots where vampires bite are good for the ladies. The neck? The femoral artery? (The artery closest to your, ahem, lady part) Two of a female's more erogenous parts. Women were at the losing part of the bargain since the get go. Not that they seem to mind.

So, what do we have? We throw together lots of hot vampire sex, danger, a beguiling virgin and you've got yourself the makings of a multi-million dollar industry. And at least one loyal fan, me.

Vampires.
Love them or hate them?

06 October 2009

Odes on a Rainy Day


Oh rainy day, how I heart thee.
You make the days so warm and cozy.
We like to bake cake
and the art projects we make,
but then we step into your pudd-lees.

The babe likes to sing in the rain.
But getting her in and out is a pain.
She thinks it a laugh,
when mom makes a gaff,
and naughty words slip out again.

Happy rain day everyone. Let's hope the sun shines tomorrow!

What do you like to do on a rainy day?


05 October 2009

How to Pack Light


During my recent foray up North my lovely lady friends couldn't believe how light I packed. I brought one reusable shopping bag for three days and two nights. I've been known to back pack around Europe for two weeks with little more than a school backpack. The Mr. and I travelled around China for three weeks in one small backpack. When we moved to China we had two suitcases a piece; and that included a suitcase mostly packed with books. When the three of us travel we share a suitcase; and that includes diapers and toys for LN. So when a friend of mine that's headed to Tokyo next week (I try not to be jealous) asked me for a packing list I jumped to the challenge.

How to do it? Well, I've come to terms with not traveling with my entire wardrobe, learned how to layer and become secure in wearing clothes that most people would consider dirty. I've picked up a few other tricks along the way too. Now this is a good list if you are going somewhere for about a week to two weeks. Longer trips require a different kind of packing...but I'll save that for another post.

Clothes:
  • Three pairs of pants: You'll want two pairs of jeans (or whatever pants you wear on a regular basis) and one pair of 'dress' pants. They don't have to be formal, but they should be something you feel comfortable wearing out to dinner. When we travelled Western China I brought along a pair of Express Men's dress pants. I hiked in them for three days and then went out to dinner. They were dirty, but at least they were comfortable and looked a little nicer than dirty jeans.
  • One skirt: Now this is optional. If you wear skirts on a regular basis and it's the season than I would add it. It's nice to use at the beach, out for dinner or just a walk around the neighborhood. However, if you don't wear skirts, don't let it take up the space.
  • One to Two Cardigans: Depending on the weight of the cardigan you can bring up to two. I prefer to bring two light weight cardigans whenever I travel. One black one and one in a nice bright color. They are easy to layer and can be dressed up or down depending on the bottoms/accessories. I never travel anywhere without them. ANYWHERE.
  • Shirts: I tend to as many shirts as days I'm going to be gone. That seems like a lot, but shirts are small and I tend to layer so I wear them all more than once. I usually mix it up between tanks and Ts since I layer them both and bring the cardigans. But if it's going to be colder bring some light weight long sleeve tops. If I was planning on going to something fancy I might bring throw in one extra 'going out' shirt. Usually a tank to save on space. Just throw on a cardigan and spruce it up with your fancy accessories.
  • Old Underwear: This is a great tip. Bring old underwear that you don't mind throwing away. And then throw it away. Seriously. Underwear doesn't take up much space, but when you're packing light every inch counts. Think how many cute souvenirs you could bring back in that space.
  • Comfy Socks: On the other hand I always bring my most comfortable pairs of socks. Why? Well most of the time when you're traveling you'll be walking and wearing your comfy socks just makes that experience that much more enjoyable.
  • Pajamas: One pair of dark colored yoga pants and either a tank or T. I generally wear whatever bottom layer that I wore during the day and not even bring any extra PJ tops. That way each piece gets worn at least once.
  • Shoes: I'm not a big fan of tennis shoes, but if you are bring them. Wear a cute, but comfortable pair of slip on shoes to the airport. Make sure you can walk in them since you always walk more when traveling. Ideally the non-tennis shoes should match whatever 'dress' outfit you've brought, if necessary.

Toiletries/Accessories:
  • Use the hotel shampoo/conditioner. You can go without your fancy bottle of Aveda for one week. Trust me, you'll welcome the space you save.
  • Bring only as much makeup as you need for one day. Seriously. I tend to bring one eyeliner, one small compact of eye shadow and some mascara. That's it. Nobody's going to care if your look looks the same everyday.
  • Sunscreen. You'll be out and about more on vacation than you would be at home. So take care of your skin and slather on some protection.
  • Hit up the travel aisle at Target. Not a huge break through, but even if they don't have your regular brand of deodorant you'll welcome the space you'll save by buying that travel size tube of other brand rather than your normal sized regular one.
  • A few pairs of earrings and a necklace or two doesn't take up much space, but it helps make those second day outfits look that much better/different.

-Remember that anything that doesn't wrinkle is your friend. I personally like wearing jersey on flights, especially long ones. It's comfortable, doesn't wrinkle but still looks nice.
-Also, bring along a scarf or two. They are light, don't take up much space and can take a shirt you've worn for two days to new places. Plus on the plane it can double as a blanket, shawl, and small pillow. Or put it over your head if you're unfortunate enough to sit next to a talker.
-Try to pack a lot of neutrals and one color or color family. That way it's easy to layer and put together outfits on the fly.
-Finally, fold your clothes on the way to your destination. On the way home roll them, you'll have more room for those extra souvenirs you're going to bring me. :)

Anyone else have any travel tips to share?

02 October 2009

The Weekend- October 3-4


Hello folks, it's that time again. TGIF! I'm desperately trying to pump out a blog post while I hear LN thumping away in her crib...she hasn't slept...yet... Well lucky for me we've got a great play date to go to this afternoon with lots of yummy food, which will hopefully lead to an early bedtime. What's on the docket for the weekend? Well, let's see:
  • The Big Cheese is running in the Medtronic Twin Cities 10K tomorrow morning. He'll be up and at 'em at six bells. LN and I will be sleeping.
  • The rest of Saturday we have not a thing planned. What's that you say? No plan? Nope!
  • Alright, we might hit up an indoor playground, such as Eagle's Nest.
  • Sunday we have our family pictures that were rescheduled from last weekend. Cross your fingers that this rain stops!
  • Since the Vikings aren't playing (they play Monday night) that means we have no plans for Sunday either. How can that be? No plans for Saturday AND Sunday. Yes kids, that's just the way it happens. Some weekends are over booked and the next we couldn't find something to do if our lives depended on it.
  • Ok, maybe we'll finally hang that shelf in the bedroom. And put some pictures on the walls. But that's it!
Fun and exciting weekend planned?
Any ideas of what we should do?

01 October 2009

Five Things I Can't Leave the House Without- Fall Edition

Happy October 1st!

So I think it's fair to say that the season's have changed. I look outside and the trees are waving wildly around in the grey light. In the house I reluctantly turned on the furnace and I have an odd twitch to bake--even more than normal. The strange thing about this time of year is how quick the temps move around. For example; this morning I was folding laundry (really! I was!) and I came across a sleeveless sun dress of LN's...that she wore last week. And this morning I was at Target buying her slippers. Crazy.

So with the new change of season's means that I also change the stuff I carry with me. Well, some stuff changes and some I keep. Let's see:
  1. Reusable coffee mug: I bought my sweet twelve ounce coffee mug on a road trip to Cali years ago. The coffee shop no longer exists there, but the mug is the PERFECT size for a quick cup o' joe or some tea. It's either filled up at home or waiting in the car for when that Vitamin D deficiency, caffeine craving kicks in.
  2. Scarf: I posted at the beginning of this week about my newest wardrobe staple. As the temps continue to decline it becomes less and less about fashion and more and more about necessity. I never leave the house now without something around my neck. Stylish and warm, that's how I roll.
  3. Socks: I know this must seem like a strange thing to add, but I have to admit; I hate wearing socks. In fact when I 'grew up' I made my own rule that I wouldn't have to wear socks until there was snow on the ground. Well, I've relaxed my own rule a bit the past year or so and when the weather turns rainy and cold I break them out. This year I hope to splurge a get me a nice pair of Smart Wool (or two or three :) ) Want to get me a Christmas gift? I particularly like these in Chestnut.
  4. Lip Balm: The Minnesota winters play havoc on any skin that is exposed, so starting now I start conditioning my lips and keep them well hydrated. I am a firm believer in Burt's Bees, although this winter I may try and find something with a hint to tint. Suggestions?
  5. Everything from the Last List: Everything I wrote about in August? Yep, they make a comeback in the Fall, because those are really the essentials.
What can't you leave the house without?

LinkWithin

Related Posts with Thumbnails