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Showing posts from December, 2009

00s

I remember all the talk, ten years ago, about how the official start of the new century was 2001, not 2000. By this logic, the start of our next date should be 2011, not 2010; yet no one seems to be complaining about all the "Best of the Decade" lists and reviews being published and discussed.

I also remember an article in Newsweek, ten years ago, discussing how to refer to our present decade. The ohs? The zeroes? The aughts? I was a bit concerned about that myself; I realize now, upon reflection, that I never once in ten years needed to refer to this decade by name anyway. I guess maybe that's something you only do once the decade is over, really. Maybe in twenty years, my girls will reminisce about being "Children of the Aughts," (Hannah Montana and Wow! Wow! Wubbzy! and jumpstart.com), in the same way that I remember being a Child of the Seventies (Donny and Marie and Happy Days and the Speak n Spell).

For me, the Aughts were my decade of Having Small Childre…

Review

I found this on another blog...some of the questions are more interesting than others. I suppose the same goes for my answers!

1.What did you do in 2009 that you’d never done before? Drove halfway across the country and back again with my children.

2. Did you keep your new year’s resolutions, and will you make more for next year? I kept one – not using my credit cards unless absolutely necessary. The rest, um, we’ll keep trying.

3. Did anyone close to you give birth? No.

4. Did anyone close to you die? Chris’s grandmother died January 1, 2009.

5. What countries did you visit? None.

6. What would you like to have in 2010 that you lacked in 2009? A good pair of sandals.

7. What dates from 2009 will remain etched upon your memory, and why? The kids’ birthdays. The first and last days of school.

8. What was your biggest achievement of the year? Reducing debt.

9. What was your biggest failure? Healthy eating and exercise (rather, the lack thereof).

10. Did you suffer illness or injury? Nothing seri…

My picks

Here are the best books I read in 2009. After I compiled the list it struck me that the books fall almost entirely into two categories – historical fiction and memoirs of motherhood. I don’t think I would ever have listed those as my two favorite genres, but there it is.

The best historical fiction, in my mind, is that which compels you to go out and read more about the period in question. I followed up my reading of most of these novels with at least one non-fiction book about their subjects (none of which were as good as the novels, of course):

The Black Tower by Louis Bayard – about the “lost” son of Marie Antoinette. Bayard is fantastic; I also loved his Mr Timothy (about a grown-up Tiny Tim) and The Pale Blue Eye (about Edgar Allen Poe).

The Terror by Dan Simmons – about the doomed Franklin Expedition, which I wrote about earlier this year. His fictional account of the disaster does a better job of tying together the evidence into a coherent whole than any non-fiction account I’ve …

2451

That's the number of miles we drove, there and back again. The trip was long. The girls were surprisingly un-whiny. The portable DVD player helped. The interstate is a boring, boring road to travel. The interstate on-and-off ramps in Alabama, Mississippi, and Louisiana are surprisingly complicated. The convenience store bathrooms in these states feature condom vending machines with really very explicit descriptions of their wares, which make you wish that your 8-year-old did not know how to read.



I drove the whole way; Chris was ill and kept going into coughing paroxysms which would have made him dangerous behind the wheel. I only allowed myself to look at the GPS mileage countdown and the clock at the end of a song. Songs generally last about three miles; that's 817 songs.

It was a long way.

The Great Wolf Lodge was lots of fun with plenty of activities to keep the children occupied and to keep the grownups chasing after the children instead of sitting and talking with one anoth…

Ho Ho Ho

Mallory and Phoebe went to Auntie Mimi's office yesterday to visit Santa.

Here is Phoebe doing her I'm-shy-head-tilt:



Here is Santa looking befuddled at what Mallory said she wanted for Christmas: Autographs from Rudolph, Vixen, and Dasher:



Here is Phoebe telling Santa that she wants an ephelant Webkinz (note to Santa -- she already has one):



Here they are all, looking jolly:



Thanks, Mimi!

Supply, demand

When I realized, ten days before our scheduled departure to spend a few days at an indoor waterpark, that my children have no bathing suits, I wasn't particularly surprised to discover that bathing suits are difficult items to procure in the middle of December. Frustrated, but not surprised.

When I was told by my daughter that her PE teacher told her that she needed a heavier winter coat, I was -- well, I was embarrassed, and also I was wondering who this PE teacher thinks she is. But, I wasn't expecting to have as difficult a time procuring winter coats in December as I had procuring bathing suits. The stores I've checked all seem to have one lonely child's coat on the rack, usually in size x-small.

So, my children will be swimming in their underwear, apparently, and otherwise wearing a lot of layers under their inadequate winter coats. I do feel like a good mother, right now.

The Big Surprise

This is Mouse, a 6-month-old English Cocker Spaniel. She was born with a cleft palate and Amy helped hand-feed her til she was old enough for corrective surgery. Last night she came to live at my in-law's house. She will be visiting us occasionally on the weekends.

Mallory burst into tears when Amy came in with Mouse and said, "This is the big surprise!" We asked her why she was crying and she said, "I'm just so happy!"

Aw.

(But Aimee -- you were right too -- I think we are going to Disney World this summer, but Mallory already knew that so it wasn't The Big Surprise.)

(I kinda wish it was the chocolate pie.)

Eight!

Dear Mallory,

You and your sister have recently invented a new saying for when you're really impressed with something. For example:

"Mommy, you buy the best best best a million times so big a number I can't even say it ice cream in the whole wide world."

Which, really, doesn't make any sense at all.

But that's exactly how I feel about you, birthday girl.

Love,
Mommy