29 April 2006
After I got the chocolate scraped off her skin and she changed her outfit to something less chocolate-dipped, we went to Purls & Girls, our local yarn store. No, this isn't the promised birthday yarn shopping trip; I just needed a specific item. Thing 2 was very excited to be going to a yarn store, and when we arrived, she happily pointed out to me her favorites. Then she plopped herself down on a chair and announced, "I want to knit!" Alas, her manual dexterity isn't quite there yet, but it certainly bodes well for the future. And she was mollified by my permission to leaf through pattern books, as well as the (very nice) store employee's attention to her. After I made my purchase, we visited the Hawaiian store 2 doors down, where she scored a plastic lei and a dolphin book, and I got a jar of guava jam. The people there were really nice, too--they tried to teach Thing 2 to say aloha and mahalo.
28 April 2006
"I think people who want to be citizens of this country ought to learnSadly ironic, considering El Presidente's masterful command of his native tongue.
English," Bush said.
Bush also stated that immigrants should learn to sing the national anthem in English. I dunno about you, but I'm third-generation American, and I couldn't sing that song if you put a gun to my head (in English or otherwise).
Life has been so godawfully busy lately that I haven't even picked up my needles in nearly 2 weeks. This makes me sad. Instead, I've been stumbling around from one obligation to another, and then falling into bed for a few hours. And things will probably not let up appreciably until the semester ends a month from now. But one of my birthday presents from hubby was a promise that I could have a kid-free afternoon to go yarn shopping. And yes, my birthday was over a month ago, but I haven't had the chance to redeem yet. But I may try to grab an opportunity tomorrow, which brings up a delightful problem: Which one to visit?? I have all the yarn stores of the Sacramento/San Joaquin Valleys and the San Francisco Bay Area to choose from. Which one should it be?
25 April 2006
Obviously, somebody (probably finches) had built themselves a nice little home in the lantern. Here's what the inside of the nest looks like:
The outside is woven of grass and weeds, and the inside is lined with bits of paper and a red thread, and, in the very center, tufts of nice, soft Ruthie fur! This is just about the sweetest thing evcer, and I'm glad there were no eggs yet when the lantern blew down.
24 April 2006
22 April 2006
21 April 2006
Thing 2 misheard the name of one of the rides at Universal Studios, and keeps insisting she wants to go on the Mommy Ride. It made me start thinking, what if there really was such a ride? Giant, harrassed-looking women would pop out and yell, "Eat your vegetables! Stop bothering your sister!" And of course, the dreaded, "Go to bed!!"
Or maybe it's a scary ride for Mommies (as if we needed such a thing). You embark on a transcontinental airline flight with two overtired, overstimulated children, ages 2 and 5. Shortly after the plans takes off, you realize you have no diapers or binkies. The younger child gets airsick and projectile vomits on you. The older child has several tantrums. In the next section, your children are older. One kid gets called to the principal's office and later bonks her head on the monkeybars, requiring a trip to the ER. The other kid comes down with something messy and contagious the morning your husband's out of town and you have an important meeting. I don't know what awaits you in the next section. Kids learn to drive? Daughters start dating? ARRGGHHH!! Let me off this ride!
19 April 2006
13 April 2006
11 April 2006
10 April 2006
Erika knitted a sweater for the tree outside her house.
10 Plagues finger puppets, to go with the stuffed toys. And if you're not Jewish? Hindu finger puppets. Or nuns. For secular types, you can choose from various scientists, philosophers, and artists (they're magnetic, too--I have Jung and Freud on my office wall). I like to imagine the conversations you could stage between these puppets, such as, say, Kafka and Poe:
Poe: What's that? It's the sound of his heart...
Kafka: ...which has turned into a cockroach!!
09 April 2006
The Skully pullover from Stitch 'n Bitch, finished. Although it's knitted in Lamb's Pride Bulky, it still took a long time to knit because it's oversized, and also because I ran out of yarn and had to order more and wait for it to come. It took about 2 1/2 more skeins than the pattern called for. We're having unseasonably cool weather, so I may actually get to wear it now, instead of waiting until December.
And here is Thing 2 considering a career in modeling:
07 April 2006
While browsing the site, I learned a few interesting things, like Germans apparently feel the need for der Pommesticker and der Eisloffel; that the creators of the site think there's an object called a Didl in English; that a pillow is charmingly called a das kopfkissen; and that there are advertisements for hot live loaves. Also, this sign needs little translation. But I think the most puzzling entry is this one. Why does it exist? What are the chances that a traveler would encounter it? Is the sign there as a warning to stay away or as an advertisement? How many of these exist in Germany and why?
My only disappointment with the CAPL site is that it doesn't contain one term I actually needed when I was in Germany: Studentenkarzer. A colleague and I were looking for the one in Tuebingen, and for some reason my pocket German-English dictionary didn't contain this particular term. Fortunately, we quickly found a helpful student who spoke perfect English, and who led us right there. Unfortunately, it was closed that day. Still, I think, it's a damn fine idea.
06 April 2006
Your Famous Last Words Will Be:
05 April 2006
04 April 2006
This picture was taken last June. The dog on the right is Ruthie, and on the left is Zeus, my parents' dog. Both appear to be fascinated by something edible in someone's hands.
Yesterday my parents had to send Zeus to the Rainbow Bridge. He was 11 years old, and had osteosarcoma.
Zeus was picked up as a stray when he was about a year old. Best as anyone can figure, he was a Saint-Pyr mix. Only about a year after my parents adopted him, they learned that he had horrible hip dysplasia, so bad that he either needed very expensive hip reconstruction surgery, or else he needed to be put out of his misery. Of course, my parents chose the surgery, and Zeus spent many years taking brisk 5 mile walks with my Dad.
At first, Zeus had fear-aggression towards all dogs except Elektra, my parents' alpha terrier. Elektra (who lived to a ripe old age herself) used to put Zeus in his place, and he'd take it, despite that he was several times her size. Surprisingly, Zeus eventually overcame his fear of other dogs, and even enjoyed playing with them. When he visited us in 2005, he had a good time playing with Ruthie, even though he was already fairly old by then.
Zeus was a wonderful, loving companion to my parents. He was also great with my kids. Even though he didn't live with small children, and only visited with them occasionally, he was very tolerant of their noise and wildness, and seemed to genuinely enjoy their company. He was always gentle with them, too. When Thing 1 was 4, she tripped and fell directly onto the sleeping Zeus's open mouth. She started crying that he'd bit her, but we'd all seen it with our own eyes: she'd fallen onto his teeth! She wasn't even scratched, and poor Zeus just seemed distressed that she was crying.
Several years ago, I ended up stranded at my parents' house over spring break when I ruptured a disk in my back. During the month I lay flat on my back, Zeus was a devoted nurse, cuddling next to me in bed oh-so-gently and keeping me company when I was miserable.
My parents haven't been dogless for 17 years, and they say their house is much too empty now. They're already talking about getting another dog or two, and I'm sure they won't be dogless for long. We all know, however, that there's no replacing Zeus. He was a good dog.