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Catching Up

Oct. 5th, 2017 10:23 pm
sakon76: (Default)
A month later, I reappear. Let's see, what's happened in that time?

First, we packed our boys into my mother's borrowed SUV and hied ourselves up to Yosemite for a semi-camping adventure. Semi in that there were no tents involved - we stayed at Housekeeping Camp. There was a massive wildfire nearby which rerouted us in and out of the park and cast a smokey haze most days, but all of us thoroughly enjoyed the trip. Smoke aside, we kind of hit a sweet spot, going mid-week just after school started back up. I very much want to go back again sometime.

Then we had our trio of September birthdays - Squiddle, Jazzy, and Wonderful Husband - happen, followed almost immediately by all three of them getting taken down by Hand, Foot, and Mouth Disease. Wonderful Husband (who has skin problems already) got it bad enough that he was admitted to the hospital for three days. Not fun for anyone! Fortunately for my sanity, my parents were able to have Squiddle stay with them one night. I didn't get it. Don't know why - my mother doesn't remember me having any previous exposure. Maybe it was just the universe being kind and saying "no, the mama can't get sick too."

But now everyone is recovered. Hooray! And this afternoon I took the boys to the Long Beach Aquarium of the Pacific. Since we have an annual membership, why not? That, combined with Finding Dory, and the Octonauts and Finding Dory games Squiddle has for his LeapPad, seem to be fostering an interest. As I rocked him this evening, I got told all about how octopuses and jellies have "tentatles" (yes, that is how he pronounces it) and how sea stars have eyes at the ends of their arms. ^_^
sakon76: (Default)
I woke up this morning feeling better. It's still miserably hot, but I'm daring to hope that he last vapors of the probably-airplane-caught illness that has plagued my house are on the way out the damned door. (As opposed to the non-damned door. My house has a front, back, and side door. Plus a garage door. I'm not sure which one is the damned door....)

Good thing, too, as I/we need to be in relatively high efficiency mode. Camping trip happening Monday! And family party tomorrow eating up a good chunk of the day. Tidying and packing and washing and making lists etcetera (etcetera, etcetera...) needs to happen today.

Up Late

Aug. 31st, 2017 01:12 am
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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....

Clever Boy

Aug. 10th, 2017 10:58 pm
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On the way to Squiddle's swimming lesson today, the radio played a song that sounded a touch familiar. I listened more intently for a few seconds and thought "Ah, it's by the same group who did that song in Big Hero 6." (Fall Out Boy). A minute later, Squiddle said "This music is from that movie." "What movie?" I asked, curious if he was connecting the same dots I was. "Baymax!" he replied.

Color Mummy impressed. Not bad for a three-year-old! Particularly since he hasn't rewatched that movie for a couple months.
sakon76: (Default)
While I was putting sunblock on Squiddle's face and neck, just before his swimming lesson. Out of nowhere - we weren't even talking about boys and girls....

"I'm not a boy or a girl. I'm just Alessanda." (his pronunciation of "Alexander")

I applaud his nonchalance in regards to gender awareness and roles. I also can't argue with the wisdom of a three-year-old. And if later in life he determines that he (remains?) non-binary, I will support him.

But damn it's cute when three-year-olds say things like that.


Aug. 7th, 2017 11:08 pm
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I just figured out part of the reason I've been feeling under the weather is that I'm starting my period again. For the first time in 19 months! Ugh.

A brighter image, though, is that Squiddle is now in week 5 of swimming lessons and is now in the water with the teacher alone - no more Mommy and Me lessons. Also, he's started developing beauty spots like mine! Some of them are on parts of his body the sun doesn't touch, so I'm pretty sure it's not summer sun exposure causing them. Also, he's started singing his own songs to himself. A fragment I caught yesterday:

"--climb up the mountain?
Yes, I can!
Yes, I can!
All by myself!"
sakon76: (Default)
Jazzy is now free-standing for up to three seconds!

Wonderful Husband got a Nintendo Switch for Father's Day and has been teaching Squiddle the ways of MarioKart. (Me: "You only have five months to prepare him for Cambridge.") Also Wonderful Husband has been playing the new Legend of Zelda game. Tonight, when Squiddle got up a bit after being put to bed, he wanted to know "Are there any fighty things in here?" (in his room). On being told no, he said "Oh, that's good to know," and readily went back to bed....
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Last week Sprouts had a spend $30, save $5 coupon. Right under their 18 ounces of blueberries for $1.98 ad. Right, I thought. Challenge accepted. And I went to the store and walked out with sixteen of those 18-ounce clamshells in my shopping bag.

Saturday, as Jazzy and I are still sickish and I do NOT want to spread this to the other babies, we skipped Mommy-Baby Yoga. And since I had the morning free, I turned the first six clamshells into five quarts of blueberry pie filling. Except the darndest thing happened. When I opened the water bath canner, there were blueberries floating on the water. My heart sank. A jar broke, I thought. It happens sometimes. Except, as I fished the other four out and set them on trivets to cool, I saw the jar hadn't broken.

Somehow the ring had unscrewed itself and the lid had floated off.

I've never had that happen before.

Regardless, the contents appeared to be good and mostly in place, so after it cooled I placed the jar in the fridge and used its contents to make a blueberry pie this morning.

I love the convenience of having pre-made the filling. But the proof, as they say, will be in the pudding. We'll see what it tastes like when we cut into the pie tonight.
sakon76: (Default)
Squiddle and Jazzy continue sick. In a particularly snotty way, eww. And Wonderful Husband and myself have, of course, caught it too, if to a lesser degree. Ugh. Maybe it's a good thing that we're not going to SDCC this weekend? On the other hand, this is my prep time for Costume College, so it's not great on that front either.

BUT. I've got everything done for the 1950s Petticoat workshop. Well, 90% done. I have it all stuffed into a bin, the lid taped on so Jazzy can't pull it out and the "take these too on the day of" list taped to the lid.

And I just spent the last two hours on either side of dinner (tri-tip roast with sweet corn, baked potatoes or buttered homemade bread, thank you very much, because sometimes even on sick days I can knock it out of the park) servicing the 1924 Singer 99 in a bentwood case that I picked up from Goodwill this week. It cost me $12.24, and I figure it will likely go for more than that in the Bargain Basement auction. Since I'm not throwing anything else into the charity pot this year, I figure that's good for my contribution, and the machine will get rehomed to someone who appreciates it. I cleaned and oiled it, refilled the grease tubes for the motor, glued one of the wood supports back in place, replaced the bobbin case felt, gave it a new spool felt, fixed the tension, and repaired the cracked wiring. It's still not whisper-quiet, but it runs smoothly now and sews a nice seam.

When I step back from my "any trained monkey could do what I can" mentality, I sometimes feel a bit like Han Solo: "Sometimes I impress even myself." And I think indulging in a little of that feeling is good from time to time. Otherwise you get worn down. But at the same time, a little goes a long way, and there is a hell of a lot I do not know about vintage sewing machine repair.
sakon76: (Default)
Posting at half past four in the morning, with a sole hour of sleep under my belt and an unconscious baby on my lap. Why? Not insomnia, to be sure. Squiddle has been sick (fever/congestion/cough) since Wednesday, and just as he started to get better, Jazzy caught it yesterday. And you can't explain to a baby why he feels crappy and can't breathe. And the only place he seems to want to sleep in on someone....

Going to try to sneak back to the bedroom and see if "between Mummy and Daddy" is a close enough compromise that he won't wake crying. Again.

ETA: Nope. No dice. Apparently only the Mummy's lap/desk chair combo lets Jazzy sleep. Joy...
sakon76: (Default)
Apologies for the political commentary, but Squiddle has of late been watching Disney's Robin Hood, and all I can think about Prince John, the Sheriff of Nottingham, and Sir Hiss is "ah, the Republican party." I'm far from the first or the last to note the resemblance between that particular party and various Disney villains. (Yzma also comes to mind.) But oh what painful times we live in.

On a lighter (?) note, I'm darkly amused by how when The Avengers came out everyone was saying how Warner Brothers must be kicking themselves for not letting Joss Whedon direct a Wonder Woman movie, but now that his actual script has leaked, the tide of opinion has shifted to "oh, thank GOD they didn't!" :)
sakon76: (Default)
Jazzy has taken to randomly screeching like a pterodactyl. Squiddle never did this! It doesn't seem to be linked to unhappiness, though, so we're figuring it's just him testing out his vocal chords.

He has also taken to banging on things. This evening I pulled out Wonderful Husband's doumbek and let both the boys have a go on it for a while. Then Wonderful Husband took over and started playing an actual rhythm. Squiddle's comment: "You're making me dance!" :)
sakon76: (Default)
Squiddle and Jazzy are watching The Sword in the Stone at the moment. Good classic Disney, though it's giving me a hankering to reread The Once and Future King.

Title: Wyoming Bride
Author: Joan Johnston
Length: 404 pages

Review )

Title: In the Land of the Big Red Apple
Author: Roger Lea MacBride
Length: 338 pages

Review )

Title: Secret Santa
Author: Fern Michaels, Marie Bostwick, Laura Levine, Cindy Myers
Length: 386 pages

Review )
sakon76: (Default)
On Friday, I got to take a class with Bonnie Hunter, one of the stars of the quilting world. Which was my first quilting class since the ones I took with my grandmother circa 1992! And I picked up some neat tips and techniques. But, honestly, string-piecing (one of Bonnie's favorite techniques) is a touch exhausting! So I'm just going to do a wall-hanging from the workshop pattern and call it good.

The weather, meanwhile, is turning devilishly hot. As in an expected high of 90 today and 95 the next two days. I'm trying to get as much as I can done in the mornings while it's cooler, and then hauling myself and the boys down to my parents' place in the afternoons. I'm getting close to done with the last cross-stitch quilt block, though, so I think today or tomorrow I need to start hauling the Christmas tablecloth along with me again for my to-go handwork project.
sakon76: (Default)
Holy crap, I actually wrote something! This is a Wonder Woman/Princess Bride fusion, on account of Robin Wright playing major roles in both films.

Hot off the presses and unedited, since I need to go to bed now:

As You Wish
by K. Stonham
released June 9th, 2017

click for fic )
sakon76: (Default)
Jazzy now has three teeth, having just cut his upper left incisor.

And today I tried making an icebox cake for the first time. Basically just alternating layers of whipped cream, graham crackers, and sliced strawberries, chilled in the fridge for a few hours. I was slightly dubious. We were all slightly dubious. It rocked, the moisture in the whipped cream transforming the graham crackers into a perfect cake-like texture. Definitely a keeper recipe! I've seen a variant with layers of pudding replacing some of the shipped cream. I may have to try that next time....
sakon76: (Default)
Hot weather arrived and with it, flea season. Yech. The cat has been Advantaged and I'm working my way through washing the everything-that-can-be-washed and vacuuming the everything-that-can-be-vacuumed. And squashing every flea I can catch. :/

I've also been working on quilts in a dual-purpose sense. Firstly, going through my vast collection of Works-In-Progress/UnFinished Objects (WIPs/UFOs) and getting some of them done (I'm aiming for one a month) and simultaneously targeting those which will neatly become Christmas presents. For further details, see my quilting blog.

Jazzy is now crawling forward and pulling himself to a stand so I'm having to go through the house with an eye to re-babyproofing it. Squiddle continues to be a bit of a threenager and had a wonderful meltdown at a Chinese restaurant the other day over wanting soup. Which we were ordering for him at the time! Fortunately the waitress also had a three-year-old and went and put in the order for the soup first and then came back to take the rest of our order. (And it was really good soup, too.)

And I've been working my way through rereading Marie Bostwick's Cobbled Court and Too Much, Texas books. So, quick book review time!

Title: Yarn Harlot: the secret life of a knitter
Author: Stephanie Pearl-McPhee
Length: 219 pages

Review )

Title: From Here to Home
Author: Marie Bostwick
Length: 351 pages

Review )
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: (Default)
Squiddle is finally down for a nap. In his new castle bed! Which is very spiff:

It got assembled a week ago. And last Friday the convertible bed got converted back to a crib. So now the boys are sleeping in the same room. Well, the first two nights Jazzy woke with screaming fits around 2am and had to come back into Mummy and Daddy's room. But the last three nights, bar me getting up 3-4 times a night, they've both slept in the same room. Hallelujah...
sakon76: (Default)
First post at Dreamwidth! Not much going on, but a few amusing things to share. Squiddle, ever more articulate, told me the other day that "The moon is a planet made of cheese." And Wonderful Husband came up with the idea that the little mermaid wasn't really walking on knives and glass, just no one had told her not to walk on the Legos.

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