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Showing posts from December, 2009

Happy Which Year?

Stop the presses!

That makes no sense in the Internet age, does it? But stop them anyway. June over at Bye-Bye Pie has alerted me to an all-important issue. Not just an everyday issue, right, June? Nor even an everyyear issue.

What will we be saying just a little over 24 hours from now? Hmmm? Or, more to the point, what should we be saying? Think about it.

Happy Two Thousand and Ten?

or

Happy Two Thousand Ten?

or

Happy Twenty Ten?

This happens to be the biggest year-changing issue we've had since Y2K; and I, for one, am appalled that our president is lolling on a beach in Hawaii rather than winging his way back to the Oval Office when this sort of controversy is raging. Does Obama really think that his Year-Naming Czar (he has one, doesn't he?) will bother to take care of this issue on his own? I mean, everyone knows (and by everyone, I mean this armchair president here) that phoning in from Hawaii just won't do. According to her, there's "a lot less pressure wh…

A Knitter's Christmas

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I know! I haven't been around much. I've been obsessed by a handwarmer pattern in Chic Knits for Young Chicks - I had to reknit them a few times (altering the pattern) to get them to suit. See? Over there to the right? I actually finished them. I rarely finish things. Now I can type on my laptop in our freezing cold Starbucks without my fingers going numb.

And my socks! I'm still working on my purple Donegal socks. And the baby hat for my friend's one-year-old....and a poncho for Rachel. Of course, I ended up spending hours on Ravelry updating my projects file and researching patterns. For you non-knitters out there? A knitter cannot think of a more fun way to spend her Christmas. Strange, but true.

At the bookstore where I worked last year, we had 2 people who always hung out there (and never bought anything) that we called Boris and Natasha. She was Ukrainian, and he looked exactly like Boris. Freaky.

Why am I sharing this? Because we gave the kids 2 R…

Comic Relief

Thanks, Vodkamom, for sharing this comedy routine with all of us today! I don't know who this woman is, but I love her.

Back tomorrow, once I get over my current knitting jag...

Food Fight

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As promised earlier this week, I am here to discuss why the Brits are mad at us (again). Long-time readers of this blog know that I am somewhat of a go-to blogger on any chocolate-related matters. It all started last year, when I alerted my readership to the threat of a potential candy bar shortage. Not only did I go on to decry the dangerous trend of gentrifying our chocolates, but I was also the blogger who revealed health care reform's hidden chocolate agenda.

You're welcome.

So! I feel it is my duty to inform you that we are facing an England-US dust-up which could make the Revolutionary War look like a lovers' quarrel. Apparently, the Brits are accusing the Americans of trying to take over their chocolate. That's right - both Kraft and Hershey are interested in acquiring Cadbury, the darling of the British chocolate industry.

What's wrong with that, you say? According to the Brits, just about everything. Apparently, our former fellow-countrymen believe t…

Moral Dilemma

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Larry and I finally made it to Target today, in a desperate bid to catch up on our long-forestalled Christmas shopping. We headed straight to the Nerf gun aisle, where I had seen Brian salivating over the N-Strike Maverick model with the rotating barrel. I put the coveted toy in my cart (only 10 bucks!) and then turned my attention to the display of ammunition refills.

"Hmmm, I don't know," I said to Larry. "Should we get the refill with 25 darts and the thing you sling over your shoulder to hold them?"

"The bandolier?" he said. "You can get a bandolier for Nerf darts?"

"Is that what it's called? I don't know if I like the look. Maybe I should just get the refill darts alone?"

"But those other refills don't have suction cups; it's velcro instead."

"Aaargh!" I said, staring at the packages of ammunition in my hands. "Why can't this be simpler? I don't know which to get!"

"Wel…

An Amazon Christmas

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Some readers thought I was griping about the impending snowstorm in my last post. Nothing could be further from the truth. I love snow. We rarely get "real" snow. I was more excited than my kids were. I'm a poor writer if anyone came away with a different impression. My apologies.

The snowstorm lived up to its hype, by the way. Totally terrific. Sledding, shoveling, hot cocoa, fresh cinnamon rolls....it was Norman Rockwell world around here for the past couple of days.

Well, except for that cop brandishing a loaded weapon at the snowball fight...apparently, light-hearted, child-like merriment stresses him out.

But, as some of you may recall, I had vowed to not do anything for Christmas until after the 15th of December. Having a natural knack for procrastination, this goal was not hard to achieve. And normally there would be nothing wrong with leaving all one's holiday shopping for the last weekend before Christmas, a weekend which usually does not include a f…

7 Quick Takes: Let It Snow Edition

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Snow is predicted here for tomorrow. Around here, getting snow at all is an exciting event. Snow which covers the grass is stupendous. Tomorrow? One to two feet of the blessed white stuff is predicted for our area. The kids are over the moon.Snow is predicted here for tomorrow. Tomorrow just so happens to be Saturday, when everyone does their grocery shopping. Naturally, they all decided to put it off until Monday.Ha, ha, no, they didn't. This afternoon, every person living within a 5-mile radius of my local Harris Teeter showed up there at the very same time. I grabbed the last shopping cart.
The Christmas pageant was this evening. Susie sang along with all the songs even though she wasn't in it. While she sang, she played with my hair. My heart melted all over my seat.
Have I mentioned the snow?I thought so.One to two feet, people! If you're tired of hearing about wintry precipitation, you can head on over to the host of 7 Quick Takes - living in Texas as she doe…

Chappy Chanukah!

I've been so busy talking about paint colors, and Irish Christmas music, and Christmas preparations (or my lack thereof), you would think that I had forgotten my roots.

Nope. Much as Christians this time of year become embroiled in discussions of the true meaning of Christmas (when they aren't trampling each other in an attempt to get those Black Friday specials at WalMart), Jewish people spend December arguing (because that's what we do best) over the proper spelling of Chanukah/Hanukah/Hanukkah/Chanukka. It's an age-old question that has stumped the best minds of our (Chosen) People. I'm sure even Maimonides spent his Decembers scratching his head in puzzlement over the orthography of our Festival of Lights. Let's face it - you can't be called the People of the Book and not even know how to spell your own holidays.

I'm babbling here.

We're celebrating Chanukah here this Sunday. What? It ends this Saturday? Darn. It seems that 8 days was not …

Haul Out The Holly...

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I have held true to my promise - not one thing have I yet done to prepare for the upcoming Yuletide festivities. Not one decoration put up, not a single gift purchased, not even a card sent out.

I won't lie to you - it's been a little difficult, watching items disappearing off Target shelves over the past week and feeling the available days before Christmas melting faster than an ice cube on a flaming stove. But I have held fast to my principle of saving Christmas for Christmas; and now here it is December 14th, my last day of freedom from the expectations of this demanding season. Tomorrow it will be time to start making lists, gathering presents, planning menus...

All of which makes me wonder whether this procrastination-on-purpose experiment was a good idea. And I'm feeling the beginnings of a sore throat coming on....wouldn't that make the next 10 days interesting?

I'll tell you the truth - at this point, I don't even know where to begin. Maybe I'll…

Wherein I Eat Copious Amounts Of Crow

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Anyone remember this post, wherein I lamented Larry's poor listening and paint-choosing skills? Yeah, that one - the one where I criticized my husband's paint selection to the entire Internet? After our mandatory week-long cooling off period, Larry and I showed Anna the paint color strip and said, "Honey, which of these colors did you want for your room?" Great care was taken to shield her from any knowledge of which paint color Larry had so foolishly purchased. This experiment was undertaken at Larry's insistence, since he refused to admit that he was wrong, refused to admit that we had both selected Feathery Lilac and not Free Spirit and yet he brought home Free Spiritanyway.
So I presented the color strip to Anna, confident in my assumption that she would affirm not only our Feathery Lilac selection but also Larry's terrible wrongness in not admitting to his mistake. She's my daughter, after all; I know what she likes; and Larry, truth to tell, is a…

The Perils of Paint

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I'm sitting here trying to figure out how yesterday's elegy to (for?) Liam Clancy degenerated into a discussion on kitchen cleaning in the comments. Are you people paying attention?

And a friend did a little research and informed me that that bargain bin Clancy Brothers Christmas CD of mine is worth 50 dollars online. Who knew? Larry remains unimpressed. He is a Clancy Brothers refusenik.

*****************

Inspired by our bedroom rearranging, Larry and I decided to paint Anna's new room. As anyone who remembers the striped walls of 2007 can attest, Larry and I should not be allowed to choose paint colors together. This episode was no exception. After researching different shades of lavender on the web and finally agreeing on the correct color, Larry hurried to the paint store to pick up a gallon before it closed for the weekend.

He returned triumphant, with paint and primer (tinted to the paint color) and all manner of painting paraphernalia, happy in the knowledge that…

Buala Bas and RIP Liam Clancy

As noted in my profile here, I'm a fan of the music of Tommy Makem and the Clancy Brothers. Upon hearing that, people are always offering/suggesting to me other great Irish music bands that they think I'll love. But I don't. I don't like any of them. I'm just a one-Irish-band sort of lass.

And now, alas, the sole surviving Clancy Brother has been called to the heavenly choir. RIP Liam Clancy - you always did have the voice of an angel (a carousing sort of angel, but an angel nonetheless). I think I may have to insist on having your Christmas CD playing for an extra month this year, as a sort of tribute to the passing of greatness. Sorry, Larry...

But let me explain...

15 years ago (long before YouTube and ITunes gave us easy access to the music we love), I happened across The Clancy BrothersChristmas CD in a bargain bin at Caldor's. It has become one of my favorite CD's of all time. Unfortunately, I have married someone who does not share my love of a…

Dial M...

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When I'm not threatening to kill people in public places, I'm at home plotting the demise of household appliances. Currently, I am in the process of murdering my 26-year-old stove. I have no choice, really, but to put it out of it's misery, because the darn thing refuses to die. Instead, it limps along with 4 ridiculously fussy burners - one of which will only heat up if I turn it to high first. Then it stays on high come hell or high water. No matter that I've dialed it down to medium, or low, or even warm - whatever is cooking there bubbles madly away as though possessed.

Naturally, many delectable stews and soups inadvertently boil over on this burner and, quite frankly, I'm tired of cleaning it up. So I don't. Which explains why it is now prone to catch fire and I don't care.

Case in point: I turned on the burner to heat up some chicken soup yesterday. Then I left the kitchen. Larry was in there and I heard him yell, "Whoa! Fire!" I i…

Different Jokes For Different Folks

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We knitters have a joke. Sometimes you'll see it on a T-shirt:

I knit so I don't kill someone.

If you're animpatient type of person, you'll understand that joke. When I'm in a doctor's waiting room, or waiting for a dental cleaning, or even sitting in the pharmacy for a few minutes, knitting is what keeps me from pacing around the room like a caged tiger.

Actually, sometimes I knit and pace. I'm tightly wound like that.

So I was knitting on a scarf while waiting in line yesterday at the post office, whereto I had blithely journeyed, completely forgetting that it is DECEMBER - the month when everyone on earth goes to my local post office to mail packages in preparation for the yuletide festivities. There were 20 people ahead of me in line.

I knit. I stayed calm. I didn't think about the 4 young ones I had left to fend for themselves at home, I didn't think about the dinner I was not starting to cook, I didn't think about anything except knit 2, …

Role Reversal

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Sometimes life is fair. Rarely does this occur, true - but it happens.

I was settling in at Starbucks this evening, plugging in my computer, ordering my hot chocolate. Aaaah! My cellphone rang. It was Larry, calling to tell me that I should pick up some ginger ale while I'm out.

Ginger ale. That can't be good.

"We have some in the pantry," I told him. "Did someone throw up?"

"Yeah, Brian did," he said. "So, uh, I guess I'll just, uh, start cleaning up here..."

At this point, I confess, I almost offered to come home. Someone was sick! There was vomit to clean up! And then I remembered - I'm working. Wasn't the deal that whoever was out earning money was not required to come home and clean up the vomit? Wasn't that the arrangement I had abided by during the 17-year-long pukefest that has been our life with kids (at least up until July of 2008)? Heck, yeah.

"Well, have fun with that," I said. "See ya l…

Family Values

I guess I should have seen it coming. I mean, considering the gambling habits I foist on my children (on Thanksgiving, no less), I should have at least been on my guard. But no - I tend to forget that our family has gradually morphed into the weird variety, a far cry from the perfection I aspired to when I had but 2 wee ones to look after.

There I was at a girl scout meeting this afternoon, surrounded by wholesome homeschooled girls and their zealously nurturing mothers. I had to leave early with Susie, you see, as a dental appointment beckoned (I know! The excitement! How can y'all stand it?).

"C'mon, Susie," I coaxed. "Time to go home - David will play a game with you while I'm at the dentist."

"Game?" said Susie.

"Yes, a game! What do you want to play? Uno?"

I think I need to mention here that 4-year-old Susie has the lung capacity of an opera singer and the sort of volume that renders amplifying aids such as megaphones complet…