Friday, March 30, 2007

It's my peeps, yo!

Did you know that Peeps don't burn? Even when soaked with tequila? I really, really wanted them to. I figured with all that sugar they'd just go up in flames!

I was forced to rethink my Peeps photo op, and instead ended up with "Peeps on the Bounding Main". I honestly didn't intend to photograph Bunny-on-Peep interspecies marshmallow love - it just happened that way.

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Cadbury Royal Dark Mini Eggs are evil.


Tuesday, March 27, 2007


Technorati Profile

Sticky Sweet

At the dinner table last night over Maui Wowie chicken sandwiches*, Kerwin and I got on the topic of healthy eating. He's concerned about his pot belly. I told him to stop drinking soda, and he agreed with me. This led to a discussion about high fructose corn syrup and how it's pervaded just about everything we eat, including almost the entire menu at the Evil Arches. Don't ask why the fat chick knows so much about nutrition. I have the theory, it's the practice that kicks my ass.

EVERYTHING has HFCS in it. He didn't believe me until I got up from the table and started pulling everything off the shelves. Breakfast cereal? Check. Mac n Cheese? Check. Instant Oatmeal? Check. Pasta Sauce? Check. Goldfish crackers? check! I don't know how many things I pulled off the shelf and he just stood there flabbergasted.

He wants to make a conscious effort to avoid HFCS. I'm not saying this is a bad idea. I think it's a great idea. I'm just wondering how he plans to bankroll it. This is the man who bitches endlessly if I go over the $190 that we get in food stamps every month (that's right, I feed 3 people on $190 and frankly I feed us pretty well). I told him that means no more cheap food. It means making our own bread or paying $3.50 a loaf. It means no more sweetened applesauce or pudding in his lunches, or salsa on his eggs. He still seems to want to go ahead with this. I'm fine with it. I eat Kashi crackers and cereal already, and I like them better than the mainstream brands.

Just wait until pop tarts go on sale and I tell him, "No, remember? They have HFCS!"

Then again, maybe I'm not giving him enough credit. Maybe he'll embrace the healthy lifestyle.

*Maui Wowie chicken sandwiches

2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, marinated overnight in a teriyaki marinade.
6 strips of bacon or turkey bacon
2 slices swiss cheese
sliced red onion
pineapple rings
wheat kaiser rolls
honey mustard

Grill chicken. Fry bacon. Slice chicken thinly. Spread the bottoms of kaiser rolls with honey mustard. Pile chicken on top, then bacon, cheese, pineapple, onion. Broil 5 min. Serve with a nice big salad. Serves two. Enjoy!

I've got a secret.

It's a nice secret, a good secret, a happy secret. It's all mine, and I don't want to tell anybody about it. It needs to be my special private secret for a little while longer. I don't need anyone's approval or anyone's disapproval. I just need to be one with my secret. I don't want anybody else to know. If you see me smiling, I'm thinking about my secret. I'll tell you about it at Midsummer.

No, I'm not pregnant. Really. If I were pregnant, this post would instead be titled, simply, "Fuck". And instead of telling you about it at Midsummer, I'd be telling you about it at Yule.

Friday, March 23, 2007

Pee in a Cup? I Think Not.

Inspired by Babycenter's mean Bargain Board

As a person who gets food stamps through a loophole in the system (AmeriCorps stipend doesn't count as income) and who uses that money I have in my pocket b/c Uncle Sam buys me groceries and daycare to pay down my debt (we would be screwed without the help), I do have a problem with drug testing. I've never done drugs in my life. Most people on welfare or food stamps are - gee - surprise - like me. Not users, not losers, not government tit suckers. Why in hell should I be treated like a criminal when I'm not one? Also, what makes anybody think I have the time or gas money to cart myself down to the FIA office monthly or weekly or however damn often these drug tests should be done to pee in a cup?

So just sit there in your 3500 sq. foot McMansion on your cul-de-sac in your designer gauchos, drinking your afternoon margarita while the nanny entertains your gymbo-clad kids and keep talking about those drug tests for welfare recipients. You so know what it's like, don't you? Oh, you don't have a nanny? Sorry! That's what happens when people start to assume things about other groups of people.

Thursday, March 22, 2007

A Day

Freyja was a holy terror this afternoon. No nap. Cranky. Whiney. Why am I at home? Mostly because she's been acting punk and running random fevers. Also, I have hit a low point again at work and I don't really feel like going in. Wrong of me? Probably. I did manage to work from home about 4 hours yesterday and 3 today. Hopefully the malaise will have lifted by tomorrow, I can't get away with staying out of the office for three days in a week.

Anyway, back to the holy terror. I still let her fingerpaint this afternoon. She wanted to dye eggs (we picked up a kit at Target today), but I drew the line there - the way she's been listening I would have had a rainbow kitchen, and not in a good way. I just didn't have the patience for the boiling and the fizzing and the stains.

I suggested she fingerpaint, and I'd cut egg shapes out of her paper. This seemed to appease her, and she happily painted six or seven sheets of paper. Some even stayed recognizable colors. I stuck them to the fridge as she finished each one. We had a good time. I bet most moms have good times every day with their children - I find myself yelling, screaming and unable to enjoy the essence of two-and-a-half lately, most days I don't enjoy Freyja or have good times with her as a rule. I'm sure this is something I'm doing wrong.

Then we went to play outside. It was too nice to stay in. Besides, the fingerpaintings had to dry. I had plans for them. It was bubbles, bubbles everywhere. She rode her "scootah". She slid down her baby slide. I sat on the trunk of our car thats' been dead for over a year (yes, we DO live in a trailer park, thanks for asking) as she ran around, pretending she was riding her scootah to Mickey D's. Yes, we eat at the trans-fat, HCFS palace way too often. My overlarge ass is proof. When I was ready to go inside, she kept going back to the slide, the scootah, the sidewalk chalk for "a minute". I finally had to pick her up, cart her inside, and stick her in her room while she was screaming bloody murder.

I used the two minute timeout to cut the eggs out from the dried fingerpaintings. Never let it be said that I cannot multitask. I taped them up in one of our windows, but wanted something with more panache. I was going to cut letters out, but then I remembered I had some tempera laying around from Freyja's birthday cupcakes (I made a cupcake stand). With a few tricks from MS Word, I had a little backwards cheat sheet and I painted "Happy Spring" on the window below the fingerpainted eggs while Freyja screamed her head off next to my chair that she wanted to paint too.

And now I should go persuade her to eat some preservative-laden macaroni and cheese (that I will add frozen peas to) so she can go to bed, since she's running around the house screaming with princess sunglasses on upside down and lamb ears from the Target dollar section on her head...

Pictures of the window:
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Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Real Moms...

Kat tagged me for this MeMe.

Real moms...

...happily admit their children are driving them insane.
...strike up a conversation with the other mom at the playground who looks like she's about to lose it, too.
...find that talking to other real moms makes them feel better.
...aren't afraid to lay down the law when necessary.
...sometimes agree to extra chocolate sprinkles, even on breakfast cereal.
...don't play the mommy guilt game. dancing in the rain as much as their toddlers do.
...don't let other real moms play the mommy guilt game.
...have useful advice or funny anecdotes on everything, from vitamin Z to potty training.
...bring their kids onto campus if they must, and use iPhoto to entertain them.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007


I "had it out" with the husband last night.

I made a list while I was sitting here at work, fretting over what I think is wrong in our relationship. I didn't want to forget anything. It was a long list. I also had to make him understand that I'm guilty of perpetuating the bad things too.

So we talked, me strung out on half a glass of red wine (either the sulfites or the tannins do me in - it's never been this bad before, but that Chateau Ste. Michele 2002 Columbia Valley Merlot was hell) and crying in the recliner.

I didn't yell. This is new. He didn't yell. That's new, too. I think we got somewhere.

He's been acting strange lately. He's been less of a charming asshole. I like charming asshole, that's why I married him. I can't take the weird, passive-agressive thing he's been doing for the past few weeks. He mentioned he was trying to be a better husband by being less of an asshole.

He's less of an asshole when he's being an asshole. Does that make any sense? Charming asshole is his natural personality. When he's charming asshole, I can be bitchy queen bee and we get along famously. When he's trying to NOT be an asshole, he acts sullen and withdrawn, and I turn into caustic screamer. And nobody gets laid. It's not happy.

He was back to being a charming asshole this morning. Amen. Now we can make some progress on everything else.

Monday, March 19, 2007

A Bookish Meme

Since my life is going through some upheaval that I'm just not quite comfortable posting about yet, here is some non-content.

Hardback or trade paperback or mass market paperback? I like mass market paperbacks because I'm hell on books. I can take them everywhere, break the spines, and if they wear out, just buy a new one.

Amazon or brick and mortar? We only have Barnes & Noble in the area, so I'm a big Amazon fan unless I drive 30 miles to the nearest used bookshop.

Barnes & Noble or Borders? B&N - no Borders in the area. I only go in when I have time to kill or need stationery rightthissecond.

Bookmark or dog ear? Dog ear, and I get yelled at for it constantly. My husband comes from a long line of librarians.

Alphabetize by author or alphabetize by title or random? Random. I try to stick things by one author all together but that doesn't always work.

Keep, throw away, or sell? Keep keep keep keep keep. We just had to buy a fifth bookshelf...

Keep dust jacket or toss it? Keep, but it gets taken off when I read.

Read with dust jacket or remove it? See above.

Short story or novel? I like novels.

Collection (short stories by same author) or anthology: Collections by my favorite authors, and anthologies by others..

Harry Potter or Lemony Snicket? Harry Potter.

Stop reading when tired or at chapter breaks? Chapter breaks, or I get hella lost. Or I stay up all night.

“It was a dark and stormy night” or “Once upon a time”? “The night was sultry.” Once Upon a Time

Buy or Borrow? Buy.

New or used? I really do love both.

Buying choice: book reviews, recommendation or browse? I just grab things that look interesting, unless I'm looking for something specific.

Tidy ending or cliffhanger? Cliffhanger.

Morning reading, afternoon reading or nighttime reading? Nighttime :D

Stand-alone or series? Hmmm. Tough. I'm not too picky.

Favorite series? Pern. Flame me all you want, I know it's trash with bad science and worse characters, but I love it.

Favorite children’s book? Blueberries for Sal

Favorite book of which nobody else has heard? Gosh, that's a tough one. I don't venture off the beaten path as much as I should.

Favorite books read last year? The Truth About the Mommy Wars, The Red Tent

Favorite books of all time? Anything that's an escape.

Least favorite book you finished last year? If it sucks, I stop reading. (yeah, that)

What are you reading right now? The Thinking Woman's Guide to a Better Birth, and the Elric of Melnibone saga.

What are you reading next? Dunno, might try some Mercedes Lackey.

An Error in my Favor

I sent in a check for a magazine subscription a couple of weeks ago, and I got a notice in the mail over the weekend. I overpaid by six cents. I don't know how, since I looked at the amount about fourteen times before writing the check, just to make sure I got it right.

They are giving me an extra issue to make up for this "inconvenience" to me. Or, they will be happy to issue me a check for the overpaid amount. Uh, I'll take the extra issue, thanks!

Friday, March 16, 2007

Book Meme

Take the list below, paste it into your own blog, put READ next to those you’ve read, WANT TO next to those you are interested in, AGAIN & AGAIN next to those you’ve read and can’t stop, and leave blank those you don’t care to read.

Stolen from Thordora.

1. The Da Vinci Code (Dan Brown) read
2. Pride and Prejudice (Jane Austen) read
3. To Kill A Mockingbird (Harper Lee) Again & Again

4. Gone With The Wind (Margaret Mitchell) read
5. The Lord of the Rings: Return of the King (Tolkien) read
6. The Lord of the Rings: Fellowship of the Ring (Tolkien) read
7. The Lord of the Rings: Two Towers (Tolkien) read
8. Anne of Green Gables (L.M. Montgomery) read
9. Outlander (Diana Gabaldon) may have read, don't remember!
10. A Fine Balance (Rohinton Mistry)
11. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (Rowling) again and again

12. Angels and Demons (Dan Brown) want to
13. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (Rowling) again and again

14. A Prayer for Owen Meany (John Irving) want to
15. Memoirs of a Geisha (Arthur Golden) want to

16. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone (Rowling) again and again
17. Fall on Your Knees(Ann-Marie MacDonald)
18. The Stand (Stephen King)
19. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (Rowling) again and again
20. Jane Eyre (Charlotte Bronte) again and again
21. The Hobbit (Tolkien) read
22. The Catcher in the Rye (J.D. Salinger)
23. Little Women (Louisa May Alcott) read
24. The Lovely Bones (Alice Sebold) want to
25. Life of Pi (Yann Martel)
26. The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy (Douglas Adams) read
27. Wuthering Heights (Emily Bronte)
28. The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe (C. S. Lewis) read
29. East of Eden (John Steinbeck)
30. Tuesdays with Morrie (Mitch Albom)
31. Dune (Frank Herbert) read
32. The Notebook (Nicholas Sparks) tried
33. Atlas Shrugged (Ayn Rand) want to
34. 1984 (Orwell) want to
35. The Mists of Avalon (Marion Zimmer Bradley) again and again and again:D
36. The Pillars of the Earth (Ken Follett)
37. The Power of One (Bryce Courtenay)
38. I Know This Much is True (Wally Lamb)
39. The Red Tent (Anita Diamant) read
40. The Alchemist (Paulo Coelho)
41. The Clan of the Cave Bear (Jean M. Auel)
42. The Kite Runner (Khaled Hosseini) want to
43. Confessions of a Shopaholic (Sophie Kinsella)
44. The Five People You Meet In Heaven (Mitch Albom)
45. The Bible read, but meh.
46. Anna Karenina (Tolstoy) read
47. The Count of Monte Cristo (Alexandre Dumas)

48. Angela’s Ashes (Frank McCourt)
49. The Grapes of Wrath (John Steinbeck)
50. She’s Come Undone (Wally Lamb)
51. The Poisonwood Bible (Barbara Kingsolver)
52. A Tale of Two Cities (Dickens) read
53. Ender’s Game (Orson Scott Card) want to
54. Great Expectations (Dickens)
55. The Great Gatsby (Fitzgerald)
56. The Stone Angel (Margaret Laurence)
57. Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (Rowling) again and again
58. The Thorn Birds (Colleen McCullough)
59. The Handmaid’s Tale (Margaret Atwood) want to
60. The Time Traveller’s Wife (Audrew Niffenegger) want to
61. Crime and Punishment (Fyodor Dostoyevsky)
62. The Fountainhead (Ayn Rand) want to
63. War and Peace (Tolsoy)
64. Interview With The Vampire (Anne Rice) again and again
65. Fifth Business (Robertson Davis)
66. One Hundred Years Of Solitude (Gabriel Garcia Marquez)
67. The Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants (Ann Brashares) want to, but don't tell anyone.
68. Catch-22 (Joseph Heller)
69. Les Miserables (Hugo) read.
70. The Little Prince (Antoine de Saint-Exupery) read
71. Bridget Jones’ Diary (Fielding) want to
72. Love in the Time of Cholera (Marquez)
73. Shogun (James Clavell) want to
74. The English Patient (Michael Ondaatje)
75. The Secret Garden (Frances Hodgson Burnett) again and again
76. Tigana (Guy Gavriel Kay)
77. A Tree Grows in Brooklyn (Betty Smith) again and again
78. The World According To Garp (John Irving) want to
79. The Diviners (Margaret Laurence)
80. Charlotte’s Web (E.B. White) again and again!

81. Not Wanted On The Voyage (Timothy Findley)
82. Of Mice And Men (Steinbeck)
83. Rebecca (Daphne DuMaurier)
84. Wizard’s First Rule (Terry Goodkind) read
85. Emma (Jane Austen) read
86. Watership Down (Richard Adams) read
87. Brave New World (Aldous Huxley) again and again
88. The Stone Diaries (Carol Shields)
89. Blindness (Jose Saramago)
90. Kane and Abel (Jeffrey Archer)
91. In The Skin Of A Lion (Ondaatje)
92. Lord of the Flies (Golding) read, but hated it.
93. The Good Earth (Pearl S. Buck)

94. The Secret Life of Bees (Sue Monk Kidd) want to
95. The Bourne Identity (Robert Ludlum) want to
96. The Outsiders (S.E. Hinton)
97. White Oleander (Janet Fitch)

98. A Woman of Substance (Barbara Taylor Bradford)
99. The Celestine Prophecy (James Redfield) want to - sort of.
100. Ulysses (James Joyce)

And I guess I'm still 14 somewhere inside, because I love Harry Potter. It's just enjoyable to read. Is that allowed anymore?

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Bear With Me

I know I keep switching templates, I can't find anything I like.

Crunchy, yet mainstream.

I signed up with MotheringDotCommune's forums a while ago so I could access their childbirth professionals section.

I get an email from them about once a week, with highlights, chat updates, etc. In this last issue was a book reccomendation that they said "wasn't a usual Mothering book since it was oriented toward doctors and hospital birth" but had good information anyway.

I consider myself mainstream - we did the full schedule of vaccinations, every well-baby visit, and you bet your sweet ass I take Freyja in to the doctor if she's under the weather. In general, I trust allopathic medicine and doctors. I don't think the hospital is the safest place to have a baby, but I think taking my child to see a doctor is a good idea. If we had naturopaths around that the insurance would cover, I'd happily consider going to one.

That said, why is it so damn hard to get people to understand that just because I happen to be mainstream in the majority of my thinking, it doesn't mean I don't understand their choices in childrearing, childbearing, infant feeding, bla bla bla bla you name it, or that I can't hold a few "crunchy" ideals too?

For example, I work full time out of the home. My husband also works full time out of the home. I don't LIKE to stay home. My child goes to daycare with a wonderful home provider who treats her like family. Does that in some way impugn the choices and rights of families who DO have a parent at home? No! My choices for my family are going to be different than your choices for your family.

I didn't "succeed" at breastfeeding, yet I think that breastfeeding is something that you should do if you can. However, I'm not going to accost you in a mall for feeding your child with a bottle. If you prop the bottle, I reserve the right to give you a dirty look. Other than that, do what you like. Did you know it's almost illegal to mention that you can still practice "on-demand" infant feeding using formula? (you can - I did - it works but SHHH don't tell anybody) WHAT?! NO! ALL formula babies are scheduled and left in baby buckets with propped bottles and you know their mammas don't love them because they are TOO SELFISH to breastfeed - at least that's what the crunchy folks want you to believe.

And what is up with the random guilt trips for women who had c-sections after failed inductions? Maybe if our culture was better oriented toward woman-friendly birth those failed inductions wouldn' t happen. Woman-friendly and baby-friendly birth is my main crunchy soapbox, yet the majority of doula clients I have are in hospitals to give birth. If they get a shot of Nubain, does it make them less of a woman? That's the idea I get from a lot of my professional colleagues and random natural birthers in general.

What I'd like to do is change the landscape of crunchiness. There's got to be a decent term for us middle-of-the roaders who like the idea of homebirth or birth center birth but didn't quite get there themselves, who wanted to breastfeed but either got bad advice or no support, who work or attend school and actually enjoy their time out of the home, and who do other various sort of crunchy hippie things in regards to childbearing and childrearing yet don't quite subscribe to the elitism that I tend to see. Can we rise up against the elitism? I sure hope so.

Friday, March 09, 2007

Grocery Shopping

11 PM, Friday night.

Bleak, cold rain.
Where is the baby?
Where is the daddy?
Where is the mama?
Putting on her shoes.
Mama is grumpy.
Oh, so grumpy.
Mama has a grocery list
and it must get done tonight.

Mama laments.

Mama sings a song of woe.
Mama wants to know
why in hell
Daddy is sleeping
and she is always the one
making the midnight run
to Meijer.

Ya dig?

Happy Birthday, Baby

My first doula client went into labor on my birthday, and her baby was born at 9:56PM. Not a bad way to spend a birthday, all things considered. Mama's labor went smoothly until transition, when baby's heartrate started to drop. It was soon back where it needed to be after having mama breathe through an oxygen mask, and the baby was delivered in just under an hour of pushing.

Then mama had some complications. These complications resulted in her being transferred from the birth center to a bigger hospital's ICU. She is stable, and on the mend. Due to HIPPA and DONA regulations, I can't say anything more than that. I was glad I was there so that Dad didn't have to go through this on his own.

The baby is "normal and boring". Dad is not doing so well - but that's to be expected. They have two other older children. If you have a minute to light a candle, say a prayer, or send some good wishes to the family, they (and I) would appreciate it.

I hope to head up to the ICU today and see Dad, at least. I was told by mama's doctor that that would be OK. Complications of this calibre happen so rarely that I'd be lucky to see another set of circumstances like this one ever again as a practicing doula. It was kind of trial by fire for me.

Saturday, March 03, 2007


So I got tix for DD and DH to go to see Monsters, INC on ICE today. They went, she apparently sat still through the entire thing and loved it - cool - DH then calls me back and says, "Ok, well now we're at the Zoo."

"Huh?" (Our zoo is small, and free in the winter months.)

"Yeah, we were driving by the zoo and I said, 'hey, the zoo! and she said 'oooh, I wanta see da tiger! I not too tired!' so we stopped. We're going to take a quick run through the zoo and see the tiger and then we'll be home."

I'm laughing by this point. Is there any wonder she likes him more than me right now? He's the fun parent. I would have said "No, it's nap time, we don't' get to do everything we want to." Maybe I need to be more fun.