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Aug. 31st, 2017 01:12 am
sakon76: (Default)
Sitting here in the office at a quarter past one in the morning on my birthday because Jazzy just. won't. go. to. sleep. (And Wonderful Husband is sick. Sick enough to be willing to consume Green Death aka NyQuil.)

Let's see. What's happened while I've been away from blogland? I took the boys and flew up to Washington to visit my sister and niecelet. I think/hope a pretty good time was had by all. Squiddle definitely thinks Niecelet is cute, and we got footage of him feeding her carrot puree. And at this stage there's still a world of difference between her and Jazzy. By the time they start school, though, their four-month experience gap will have narrowed quite a bit.

Also! I am so PROUD of Squiddle. On our last day up there (a week ago), he made his first pun/portmanteau! I had dressed Jazzy in a onesie and denim overalls and commented that he looked like a farmer. Squiddle declared him a "pacifarmer," punning on Jazzy's pacifier....

The weather here has turned unfortunately brutally hot. Wonderful Husband is taking a couple weeks off work to recharge before Jazzy's birthday. This week we're just trying to stay cool. Next week, we're going to Yosemite. Which means digging the family's camping gear from when I was a kid out of my parents' garage and testing and cleaning it. Appropriately, my mother thinks it was all probably last used when we went to Yosemite when I was a teenager. So, thirty-five years ago....
sakon76: (Default)
We didn't do much around here for Mother's Day this year. We did send cards and a gift card to my little sister, as she's now a mother, which I think she wasn't expecting. And my mother continues to be out of the country until Wednesday, so I told her on the phone this morning that we're delaying Mother's Day for her until next Sunday.

And for me, well, Jazzy had an unhappy night the night before, where no matter how deeply asleep I thought he was, I was not allowed to put him back into his crib. So eventually I gave up and he spent most of the night in Mummy and Daddy's bed. Where he wet himself thoroughly. So part of yesterday was changing the sheets, washing the comforter, and including the next size up of disposable/overnight diapers on the shopping list.

On the other hand, I got up an hour and a half before my boys and Wonderful Husband, and spent the time sewing. In fact, I managed to put together another quilt top yesterday, and am hoping today I can put a backing together to go with it. I have it earmarked for a Christmas present.

Plus I cleaned out some science experiments from the fridge and made some double chocolate banana bread and chicken pot pie for dinner. Win!
sakon76: (Sakon)
I got another of this year's new blueberry bushes into a pot. Only one left! I mix the potting soil with a cup or so of cottonseed meal to acidify it. So far so good. And having more bushes around, albeit in the small from-the-nursery pots, during flowering time definitely made an upward tick to the amount of blueberries per bush we'll be getting this year.

This afternoon was spent in something of a more hectic mode, though. My sister has been readmitted to the hospital for a mastitis abcess and infection. She wasn't going to be able to keep Niecelet with her, and there's no one else to take care of things. So the social workers at the hospital were going to arrange for me to fly up. A good chunk of the afternoon was spent back-and-forthing on this with her and Wonderful Husband. Jazzy was to go with me; Squiddle was to stay with Wonderful Husband. About an hour before the last possible time I would have been able to leave to catch the flight, a different doctor came in with a different verdict. Sister's getting admitted overnight, probably will be released tomorrow, and a friend of hers can room in and be the responsible adult so far as Niecelet is concerned.

So, I can go to Wondercon this weekend after all.

But at least now I know how quickly I can tidy up necessary crap around the house and pack for a trip.
sakon76: (Sakon)
I planted 107 popcorn seeds (one whole packetful) on Tuesday. Will be interested to see how many come up. Meantime, in the garden bed I planted with fifty bajillion seeds a week or so ago, the radishes and mizuna are popping their heads up and I think I saw the first sprouts in the spinach and snow peas areas. (Also in that bed: mesclun, lettuce, cucumbers, two types of beets, leeks, carrots, arugula, and parsnips. Plus the potatoes and calendulas that had self-seeded from last year. I may have drawn myself a map so I remembered what's where.)

We bought a betta to add to the tank, so that's up to six fish now and everybody seems happy thus far. I'm going to wait a week or two before adding anything more. I'm thinking maybe some mollies or guppies would be pretty, but I want to do some research first.

I got an out-of-the-blue call today that pretty much summed up to "Hi, you don't know me, but I was given a bag of quilting fabrics and I don't really do that, so would you like them?" Seems someone (I suspect one of my guildmates) had given Shirley my phone number. And I love the fabrics she gave me - they're quite varied and I think I'll find them useful.

Also today, my sister, after two weeks in the hospital, has finally been released to go home. Hooray! This extended postpartum stay involved an abcess the size of a tennis ball. *grimace* Nobody was really happy about that. And she's still on antibiotics. But she and niecelet finally got released. And apparently the frozen breast milk I shipped up has come in handy, so at least that was good.

And, last but definitely not least, Wonderful Husband and I have now been married thirteen years. ^_^ Still my lover and my best friend, even if we don't get to date or dance as much as we used to. ^_^
sakon76: (Sakon)
Sister had a CT scan this morning, which revealed an abdominal abcess. This was followed by surgery to deal with it. Hopefully, knock on wood, this is going to take care of everything! But meantime niecelet is going to be on formula again for at least 24 hours and my sister (possibly because of the infection) has not been producing enough milk for her. So tomorrow morning I'm going to put together and ship a relatively expensive care package of all the breast milk I've been sporadically pumping and freezing over the last couple months. I think part of the reason I've been holding off on taking care of donating it to Mothers' Milk Bank was maybe in case something like this happened...? In any case, not so good that she needs it, but good that I have it for my sister to use.
sakon76: (Sakon)
Today is one of those days where I wish I had a flagpole in my yard. So I could fly the American flag at half-mast. A good man leaves office and is succeeded by a man who is the cream of society... in the Pratchett sense of "or at least that bit that floats to the top."

BUT!

Today redeems itself on a personal if not national level because I am now an auntie!!!! My niece Sibyll was born this morning. ^_^
sakon76: (Sakon)
Meh. I'm three quilts and four books behind in things I want to post about here! But for the latter, at least, I have to wait until the LJ folk fix their Java script - I have no access to my galleries to upload new pictures!

That said, I'm starting a new blog, one dedicated to my sewing and quilting, here.

Don't worry! I'm not abandoning LJ! The new blog is solely for the sewing stuff. My life and my peeps are here. I've got a lifelong paid account, and I intend to cling to LJ until it dies a hard, cold death on its own.

So, let's see. What else? Christmas ended up coming together in the last day or two before the actual date. Wonderful Husband is off this week so we've been sort of teamworking to get some stuff around the house done that usually slides and piles up. Squiddle is still resisting our nudges about potty training. Jazzy is a happy, fat, gurgly baby. And it's just over three weeks until I get a niece.

Ah, amusing thing about the niece. For Squiddle, Wonderful Husband and I chose not to know the gender, so of course no one else did either. (Save the doctors, of course.) For Jazzy, we had a hard time deciding on his name - I think we only finally decided like the day before he was born. So in neither case have my parents known the name of their grandchild-to-be. Well, my sister is continuing the tradition! She's teased us by saying it starts with "S" and is not a common, though also not an unknown, name in this country. I told her I was perfectly okay not knowing ahead of time - I appreciate the mystery. But consequently my parents and I are referring to the baby as Vera. The name (and yes I know it doesn't start with an "S") being pulled from The Beatles' song "When I'm 64," namely the line "grandchildren on your knee / Vera, Chuck, and Dave." And since my parents already have two grandsons to fit the rest of the line....

We are all dorks in our own ways. ^_^
sakon76: (Kitten)
Last week, our visitors (my mother-in-law, father-in-law, sister-in-law, and, separately, my sister) all flew home. My father's 70th birthday party, Thanksgiving, and my sister's baby shower were all successfully pulled off. So then, of course, I hit a bit of an emotional crash and Christmas stress. Whatever. I got past it by sewing. I can't explain why needle and thread, or preferably sewing machine and thread, help me work my mental/emotional knots out. I'm just glad it does, especially now that a toddler and an infant stymie my fiction writing abilities. I have faith that the latter will come back eventually, but I don't know when. So some creative outlet is good.

My sister's baby shower, on the 26th of November, came off rather well. The weather held good just long enough for fifteen of us all to have an al fresco lunch on my parents' new patio, then stormed while games were played an gifts opened. And as the party broke up, the sun came out and there was a double rainbow!! A good omen, I hope. My sister got weepy about at least two gifts, the first and last. The first was our aunt and myself going in on it together to purchase the glider my sister wanted. The last was this:

purplediamond.jpg

I'd told her I was going to make her a baby quilt...

And today was the December meeting of the Orange Grove Quilters Guild. I hustled the boys down to my parents' bright and early so I could sign up for one of next year's classes. And I got in the class. Next June, I'll be taking a workshop with Bonnie Hunter! At guild, I also did a show-and-tell of my other recent quilting finish, which is a piece I made for Wonderful Husband fifteen years ago and only just got around to quilting:

heartsquilt.jpg
sakon76: (Sakon)
Attended my uncle and aunt's annual Fourth of July party today, which was as always quite nice. Went into the pool with Squiddle for a little bit. He initially didn't like the water wings his Nana got him, but got used to them.

In the evening, after the local fireworks display ended, and the street ones were mostly over, we headed home because it was already past Squiddle's bedtime. And managed to time it so that we were driving past Disneyland as their fireworks were going off.

I kid you not, there were two solid miles of cars pulled over to the shoulder of the 5 freeway, emergency blinkers going, all of them watching the fireworks display.

Wonderful Husband and I could not stop laughing.

And of course it is now legal in Anaheim for people to sell/buy/set off fireworks (I voted against it), so this year it won't just be the yobbos down the way illegally setting them off until three in the morning. It'll be everyone. Including, apparently, our neighbors two doors over.

Joy. At least we have double-glazed windows.
sakon76: (Sakon)
We came to Britain with three luggages and are leaving with four. But that's okay; my inlaws frequently do the same thing on their trips to America, so we trade luggages back and forth across the Atlantic. Also okay because we're flying Premium Economy this time, so we're within our luggage allowance.

Less okay is getting up at 5:30am tomorrow because Virgin Airlines cancelled our nice, leisurely afternoon departure flight, and slotted us onto their morning departure one. Sigh. Que sera sera.

I'm feeling a bit smug because I got the first three luggages to all weigh exactly the same (48.6 pounds) almost by accident. No idea on the last luggage yet, because it will need to include things like our pyjamas and bathrobes.

We've had a lovely time over here on our long holiday, spending time with family and friends. Going back to our daily lives is going to be a change, and we're going to miss everyone we visit and hang out with over here. There are only two things I'd change about this vacation. One is to somehow magically make Squiddle happier about sleeping in a playpen when needs must. And the other is to have experienced a little bit of snow. We had freezing temperatures, and we had precipitation. We just never had them at the same time. Alas. Perhaps next time....

Or, who knows? Maybe it'll snow in Los Angeles again. ^_^
sakon76: (Sakon)
Yesterday involved a 2.5 hour drive down to San Diego, saying goodbye to my parents for the next six months while they sail around Baja California, and then a 2.5 hour drive back home, Wonderful Husband driving my parents' car this time, and two separate screaming fits by Squiddle during that second drive.

This, as I quipped to Wonderful Husband, is why we should never, ever do only one day of San Diego Comic-Con. Five hours of driving was bad enough; stacking that atop a day of convention activities would be sheer murder.

In any case, I thus spent most of this morning with what I suspect felt like a hangover. But I've gotten over it by now, and as Wonderful Husband and Squiddle are both currently napping, I feel like I should try to get something accomplished. Save that I don't know what.

Update

Jun. 30th, 2014 12:27 pm
sakon76: (Sakon)
All is quiet. Squiddle is napping in his high chair. Wonderful Husband is napping on the bed. And, judging by the faint tang of tar in the air, someone within a half-mile south of us is getting a new roof today.

Survived the rehearsal dinner for my cousin's wedding, despite Squiddle spending most of it melting down due to lots of people, lots of noise, and a vanishing pacifier. Survived the wedding and reception as well, despite two things that hurt me (one - family not coming to find me and Squiddle for the family photo, and two - my uncle going back on his promise to give me a certain book of my grandfather's) and Squiddle having slightly less of a meltdown due to us packing more pacifiers. Everything was lovely, otherwise. Just that a crying infant makes things less fun.

Saw How to Train Your Dragon 2, which I think I have mostly processed at this point. I was not expecting certain things that happened, and overall it was a lot darker/more serious a movie than the first. Possibly Dreamworks' most grown-up film to date? I don't think it was quite as good as the first one, but I do like it and I think I need to see it again, to untangle a few more things about it in my head.

I also day-tripped to Botcon, where I had a wonderful day de-stressing and hanging out with my geekish galpals. Thanks, [livejournal.com profile] okami_myrrhibis, [livejournal.com profile] tainry, and Jecca, whose LJ account name I forget! The day with you was just what I needed.

The day after Botcon, Wonderful Husband, Squiddle, myself, and Wonderful Husband's parents drove eight-ish hours north to Lake Tahoe! Which is a gorgeous, gorgeous place. I'd never been there before. And as a bonus, I got to meet up a couple of times with my childhood friend Cody, who lives/works in the area and had just returned from a trip to Brasil. Alas, though, his wife had to work late, so I still haven't met her.

After Tahoe, our intrepid party went west to Monterey, where we saw seals and sea otters at the Fisherman's Wharf and went to the Aquarium, which was lovely. Then, south to Solvang, stopping en route at the sea lion vista point, and at the Madonna Inn for dinner. We arrived home Saturday and are getting back into routine.

While in Solvang, I picked up a children's crochet book in a thrift shop and started a project last night. Except the jacket panel that was supposed to be 13" long is somehow 20" long, so I'm going to put it aside for now, and instead sew Squiddle a quick hoodie for the trip to Portland/SeaTac in a week, which is what the jacket was supposed to be for.

Anyhow, laundry to do, errands to run, sewing to finagle.
sakon76: (Sakon)
Inlaws arrived safely and stopped by briefly on their way to the hotel to cuddle the Squiddle, who is much bigger than when they cuddled him last.

Unrelated thought that's been nagging at me for a while now. I never know how to respond when people praise my cooking. I'm not one of those gifted individuals who can merrily fling a bit of this, some of that, and a dab of yet something else together and end up with a dish. I cook by mechanics, by tried-and-true recipes. So I really, honestly doesn't feel like my cooking is anything praiseworthy. I'm getting praised for following directions. "Oh, you did that paint-by-numbers so well!" So I never know what to say.
sakon76: (Sakon)
Had kind of a quiet Father's Day this year. Wonderful Husband painted the front of the garage while I attempted to reclaim the kitchen and dining room from their disaster area state. (Does this happen to anyone else, where their house just... devolves into independent disasters? Or just me?) I made far i kal (a Norwegian dish, literally "lamb and cabbage") and my parents came up for dinner. I haven't had far i kal since I was a child. It brought back memories.

We got to bed on time, a rarity, and then got a call at eleven-thirty that the website of the company Wonderful Husband works for was down. So he ended up staying up for two and a half hours in the middle of the night, working to fix it. (I got up once during that time to change and feed the Squiddle.) Thus, he slept late this morning and I made oatmeal for brekky. Tonight, since we also both slept late yesterday and thus it got preempted, I'm making pancakes and bacon for dinner. It's a two-breakfast day!

My inlaws are, as I type, on an airplane winging in my direction. Thus the order of the day for me is laundry and housecleaning. I've got both bedrooms and the hall done thus far; next is the shower room, and honestly, if that's as far as I can get in between attending to the Squiddle's needs and wants, I'm good. Well, that and sweeping the office floor. And de-catting the sofa. So, really, no, still a lot to do.

And, ah, the baby's awake from his nap. Time to go pick him up!
sakon76: (Sakon)
Rellies in town this weekend. Two of Mom's first cousins, to be specific. Cousin Gretchen arrived today, so we had her and my parents up here tonight for dinner. Squiddle was, of course, soundly adored.

Then, after everyone left, Wonderful Husband, the Squiddle, and I were in the office. I thought I felt a minor quake shiver through, as I did the other week during a sleep-deprived early morning feeding, but sometimes it's just Wonderful Husband exhibiting Restless Leg Syndrome.

Just as it turned out last time, though, this wasn't my imagination.

My sister Skype'd a bit later, and while I was lying on my bed talking with her, the house started going to town. Baby's first earthquake! It was strong enough that I grabbed the baby and bolted for a doorway, then all of us booked outside to the driveway once the shaking stopped.

(Sister's comment: this is one of the things she doesn't miss about California.)

Turns out the one I felt earlier was a 3.6, the large one a 5.1, and we both felt one sharp aftershock of a 3.6 a bit later. All centered just about four miles due north of us. I'm still feeling smaller tremblers.

Viva la vida California!
sakon76: (Tsubomi)
The baby has started getting a couple tablespoons of rice cereal added to his breast milk diet this week. He seems to quite like it, lunging for the spoon as it is offered to him. I estimate about ninety percent of the cereal gets swallowed. The remaining ten percent... around the mouth, on the hands, and anywhere the hands can reach. Eyelashes, for instance. ^_^;; I finally understand why people gave us a couple dozen baby washcloths. Why is it that it only takes three to wash all of him, but four just to clean off the Squiddle's dinner?

Yesterday, I prepared the next bed along in the kitchen garden, digging in blood meal, bone meal, and compost. Today, I went to the Fullerton Arboretum plant sale and got ten tomatoes (two each of Indigo Rose, Green Zebra, Black Krim, Japanese Black Trifele, and Bloody Butcher), two lavenders, two bee balms, and two different varieties of stevia. And this afternoon I proceeded to plant exactly none of them in that bed. Instead I put in the half-dozen jalepeno peppers, Yellow Pear tomatoes, and remaining four potatoes I already had, plus a row of cucumber seeds, and several rows of carrots/radishes and leeks. There's still a block of space left; I'm debating what to sow there tomorrow, but I know parsnips are getting some of that space, as are either peas or beans.

For now, however, I should return my attention back to sewing. I've made a new deadline goal for that 1950s repro dress, which is my cousin's bridal shower on the 5th. I've never been to a bridal shower. Am I supposed to bring a gift? Is it supposed to be any particular sort of gift? Help me, internet friends - you're my only hope!
sakon76: (Sakon)
Wonderful Husband and I did our usual for Valentine's Day, which is dinner at WingNuts, a card exchange, and no roses or gifts or chocolates. (Though I did hit up Target for a couple bags of discounted dark Dove the day after.) Nice quiet tradition, and the waitresses thought Squiddle was adorable. And I discovered nursing a baby in a booth is trickier than in a chair. Didn't help that he was being kicky-flaily.

Saturday, my uncles from the Bay Area showed up, and met their great-nephew. They both held him, which is one better than my other uncle will do. :) He was agreed to be very cute and well-behaved, and Uncle Scott said that Squiddle pretty much looks like a Gerber baby. Which is a fair, accurate comment.

And then, Saturday night, Wonderful Husband and I went to a concert! We saw Sting and Paul Simon at The Forum in Inglewood. We didn't have great seats (the very last row, just a little off center), but the sound was pristine and the concert itself AWESOME. The setlist was great, and their combined band was phenomenal. Wonderful Husband's more of a Sting fan, I like both artists, and we both had an excellent time. And it turned out to be a very good thing that we'd gotten tickets to the show on the 15th rather than to the later-announced (and geographically much closer) show on the 16th, because it meant my parents could watch Squiddle.

Because on the 16th, my parents flew down to La Paz, Mexico for a few days. Or at least they were supposed to. They showed up at the airport and found their flight had been cancelled without notification. As had their return flight on Thursday. Fortunately the airline was able to reroute them, but what had been supposed to be a direct 2.5-hour flight turned into a 3-hour flight to Mexico City, a 2.5-hour layover, and then a 2-hour flight to La Paz. They didn't get to their hotel until 1:30am, Mountain Time. And on Thursday they're going to have to drive to another city entirely (I forget which) to catch a flight back. As you may imagine, the phrase "not best pleased" covers the situation....
sakon76: (Sakon)
My dad's side of the family live halfway up the state (and I live in one of the loooong states, not a rinky dinky little state like in the northeast of the country) so we don't get to see them too often. Though one of my cousins on that side does live down here; I should invite her and her fiance to dinner sometime, hmm.... But I digress.

My two uncles that I don't often see will be in town on Saturday, so that they and my dad can attend the 70th birthday party of their eldest cousin. Last time I saw these uncles, I was roundly pregnant with the Squiddle. Who will get to meet that side of the family at the above-mentioned cousin's wedding in June. But the younger of my uncles got a touch weepy last time I saw him about Squiddle being his parents' first great-grandchild, etc. So I e-mailed him and asked if they would like to meet Squiddle while they're down this Saturday. He e-mailed back, and it looks like my uncles will be turning up at my house sometime on Saturday!

Cue panic attack!

I like to joke that I come from the poor branch of the family. How true that is, is up to debate. But I've never been at my uncles' homes and seen them be less than immaculate. My house is currently... not quite a disaster area, but it could be much cleaner. So I spent what of today I could cleaning and reorganizing my sewing nook. Which is now like half-done and spread across the room. But the problem is that a decent section of the mess is (1) things to be mended, and (2) things to be finished. I don't have time to clear the latter out, but I've started in on the former. Two pairs of trousers and two skirts, done. More to be done tomorrow....
sakon76: (Sakon)
Botcon is going to be a kinda-sorta thing for me this year. Luckily, it's local, so I can drive it! Because I just checked dates of things (including dates of my inlaws' travel, and of our potential travel with them...) and discovered my cousin's wedding is in the late afternoon the Saturday of Botcon! Fortunately, the wedding is even more local (like, ten miles from home), so I can do a half day of the con.

Also working out well is that my friend who lives near Lake Tahoe will be returning from his trip to the World Cup in Brazil a few days before we theoretically end up in his area. Of course, given that California is in a major major drought and he's a fireman and it will be summer then, he may not be available for a meetup regardless, but that's not something that anyone can plan anything about.

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