Sunday, December 31, 2006

New Year Revolutions

Only hours to go... 2006...Hope it was a good one for you.

In case you are wondering, Eldest says that he has not made a New Year Revolution. INBA says that he will make New Year Revelations when he is grown up.

As for me, I don't usually make any New Year Resolutions. This year, however, I am resolving to recommit to those things that I know I should be doing, yet rationalize ignoring.

I will go to the gym while INBA is in preschool. Too bad for me if all I get to do while he is occupied is exercise... my booty needs it.
I will stop snacking! Again, my booty doesn't need any more treats. It isn't a treat to spend more time at the gym (see above.)
I will continue to de clutter my life. It is amazing how much stuff comes into this house for no really good reason. It must stop!
I will love. I will love my life and everyone in it- including me.

I think that is the big stuff... the hard stuff... the almost feels impossible stuff. But it is the stuff that is my life, my health and my happiness.

Whatever your position is on Revolution, Revelation and Resolutions, Happy 2007!!!

Thursday, December 28, 2006

Had Ourselves a Merrry Little Christmas

And then some... But let's not get too far ahead of ourselves... First there was a birthday. Or at least a party to display.

INBA had his buddies over and ate cake and ran around the house like it has been too cold to do it outside. Oh, wait, it has been. A great time was had by all.

So, now what are we going to do to keep our minds off pretty paper?
We hopped on the 'T' and took ourselves to town. At PPG Place they have the International Santas displayed (no picture for some reason, you will have to go see for yourself.) It was quite nice. They had music. We had bad timing as that Starbucks shut up their makeshift shop about 10 minutes before we arrived (but there is a 'bucks about 2 blocks away on Market Square- I survived until then.) They had an enormous tree and gingerbread houses decorated as a charity event. Being the 'burgh, someone made a replica of Heinz field.

This Bascilica was pretty cool.

But Rapunzel's tower was my favorite.

You can see the Arc de'Triumph in the upper right corner.
People were quite creative! Not being an experienced gingerbread house builder, I found it quite amusing what people thought to use for decorations. Like, shredded wheat for a thatch roof, frosted mini-wheats for a snowcovered roof, some kind of round wafers that reminded me of a colorful tile roof, pretzels for logs, jelly beans for rocks, all sorts of clever objects. It reminds me of going to see the Rose Parade floats up close. One doesn't automaticly think of kumquats and brussel sprouts and sunflower seeds when thinking of how to decorate a parade float. The first time I saw them, well, I don't know what I was expecting- maybe just the flowers since that is what they always talk about- it was really amazing to see and to think of all the work that goes into them.

That was a tangent, but here is a bit of what it looked like with more scale. Rapunzel is at my elbow.

This is what INBA looked like the whole time, yeah, the gingerbread houses were ok, but there were at least 3 trains running...

There is an ice rink in the plaza outside.

The boys were forced to pose with Mommy... with promises of hot chocolate (Starbucks was getting closer by the moment!)

We were inspired!
Ok, so I had picked up the kit at Costco about a month ago, but we were inspired to actually put it together. To the boys, that means inspired to gorge themselves with candy.

Check out this kit. That white plate is part of the packaging and the ingenius assembly device!! Squirt some premade frosting in the slots, stand the sides up in it, slap on the roof, ta-da!! Yes, we obviously had issues with this part last year.
It is by Create a Treat. I hope Costco has it again next year!

The Mister and the boys had a great time decorating. The little gummies along the edges pick up the light and at the right angle, look like they are glowing! Very pretty.

Chez Mayhem.

Look at these boys!

The Jammies are from GMA, but I just couldn't resist INBA's face. Funny.

Happy Mommy...
Also known as spoiled girl.

My swift arrived. Thanks, again, to Stacy for the gift card contribution to the purchase. It is killing me, tho, not to wind up all sorts of good stuff and cast on for numerous projects...

what could keep me from doing that?

Oh, maybe this.
It must be done by the Mister's bday!!! MUST!!! I cannot take it any longer! Laurie suggested Epiphany as a target date for our respective didn't-get-the-husband's-sweater-done-for-Christmas-sweaters. I will work toward that, but I am thinking that mid-January is more likely. You just don't realize how long his arms are!!!
"All the better to hold you with, my dear!"
While I do appreciate that, I could use this sleeve as a scarf!! Ok, I exaggerate, but my impatience is getting the better of me. Must finish, must knit, must close this post and get on with it!

One More thing before I go... The second sparkle sock... For some reason, I didn't think to pick up the new ball when I started it, so this is how much more sock I can get out of 50g. I am about half way into the heel flap. I was pretty surprised by this. I suppose it is useful information but I am more happy at the moment that when I am done, there will only be one blob of leftover instead of two. Oh, and really happy that I am almost done with a pair of socks that is for MEMEMEMEMEME. And they sparkle, did I mention that?

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Bad Mom of the Year

PreSchool Christmas Play
and who had a camcorder with no battery? Uh, yeah.
INBA was one of the 3 kings. He was too cute. No pictures. Bad Mom. But at least I was there.

Pooping Sheep

I didn't mention the exchange that we had at knitting last week. My lovely friends showered me with wonderful, thoughtful gifts. Stacy gave me a gift card that I immediately turned into a Yarn Swift (should be here by Friday!!) Laurie made me a green (nobody likes green) beaded watch and matching earrings, and Celtic Queen gave me luscious sock yarn and a POOPING SHEEP. I know that the latter was really for the boys... and yes, my boys will eat brown jelly beans that emerge from under a plastic sheep tail. I tried to dissuade them... but it was jelly beans and they were not going to be led astray. I guess they know real poop when they see it.

Monday, December 18, 2006


Maybe it is a Blue Thing.

Eldest was admiring the Mister's Blue Cable Sweater (BCS) the other day. As in, "Oh, I really like how that is turning out, Mommy. Maybe you could do one for me?"
Ok, this is the kid that turns his nose when I offer... knit it blue and twisted... I like it?!?!?

Eldest is now in need of glasses. He is pretty nearsighted. (This has nothing to do with him admiring the BCS, he was up close.) His eye doctor is right next to Mineo's Pizza in Mt. Lebanon. Yes, of course we had pizza for dinner tonight. And who did we see (loitering) at the pizza place? Magic Man. The boys were impressed. I told them that Magic Man comes to the knitting group with his girlfriend and does magic card tricks for us. Guess who wants to come knitting with me, now? He has been intoxicated with blue merino wool and 15 year old boy.

Happy Birthday, INBA!!
I guess it is official, if you are a whole handful, you are most certainly not a baby anymore. I don't know how it is possible that my baby became a 5 year old with puppy feet, but he did it. He informed me this evening that he is now going to go to Kindergarten with Mrs.H. He was not interested in the fact that he is going to have to wait until fall to get on the bus with Eldest. No sir. No more 4-year-old preschool for him.
Parenting sucks. One should not have to have their realities shattered at such a young age. Sadly, this is the price to be paid for not being a baby anymore.

Sorry, kid.

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Think about it

There was a rebroadcast of a Frontline episode the other night on PBS. If I had looked at the listings, I would have encouraged you to watch it. Technology being what it is, however, you can watch it here with Windows media player or realplayer.

It is called, Is Walmart Good for America? Now, I am not going to harp on my global economics issues, but I do think that it is important to be educated. If you don't realize what impacts your decisions make, you may be making bad decisions. Ignorance is bliss, I know. And if we must speak frankly, and heaven forbid, have a far reaching discussion, these issues are about a lot more than corporate policies of one of the largest retailers in the world. It is still supply and demand, the more they supply the more we demand and the more that they supply. It speaks to larger cultural issues of gluttony, egotism, materialism and many more less than attractive attributes. We can talk about the breakdown of the American family, how wages and good jobs sent overseas and our 'need' for stuff often sends both mother and father off to work and leaves the television to parent our children. We can talk about how this cycle is self perpetuating and accelerated by the mindset that more is better and cheap is better yet and if we buy our kids just exactly what they want they will love us and forgive us for not being there.

So, I am not going to go on and on about this subject. I feel strongly about it, and I wish only that you look at this program and consider what part you play in this story. You have choices, and yes, maybe they aren't that much more attractive at this stage in the game in terms of where you shop. But, also, might you consider how you shop and not just where? How much is enough?

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

The Black Hole

Is Growing!!

My baby has lost another tooth! More precisely, he yanked it out at lunch on Friday. I was there for lunch duty. One of his buddies came rushing over, "Eldest lost his tooth! Eldest lost his tooth!" It was exciting as only it can be when a 1st grader has a tooth to pass around at lunchtime. He was very worried about it making it home and under his pillow. The letter that the tooth fairy sent after the last tooth warned that she wasn't going to pay for anymore teeth that went sight unseen. He was thrilled to find a dollar under his pillow.
Why is it that he has no qualms about believing in the tooth fairy, but he is struggling to believe in Santa?

That's what Friends are for...

The ever fabulous Laurie made me this unbearably cute bracelet. She indulges my odd attraction to christmas lights. Ain't it GREAT?!

Eldest and I took the leisurely way home last night after his school Christmas concert. I drove him through a neighborhood that is close to us with MUCH larger homes. I was surprised at the lack of lights let alone imagination. Places we have lived previously, the swank neigborhoods always had the great lights having the most to work with. Here, can you believe that our block of our street is probably the most nicely lit? Not that it is anything fancy, I only put some lit garland around the lamp post and swags on the doors. But most of the houses have a little something, and COLORS!! Am I the only one that thinks it a waste of time to put up all those white lights? And what ever happened to a little twinkle, people!!! Anyway, it makes it nice to drive up the hill to see a little something on each side and most every house.
What does your neighborhood look like? Is there someplace nice to go see lights without driving up to Hartwood or down to Olgebay and paying 15 or 20 bucks?

Otherwise, here we are preparing for INBA's 5th birthday... party this weekend. His big bash is Curious George theme and his buddies Jack and Eli. I tried to talk him into more, but reality is, INBA is an intimate party kinda guy. I will have to remind Eldest of the merits of such parties when he starts writing his own birthday guest list.

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Tell Me Why

Why is Tangerine Orange Zinger tea red? I don't doubt that the first ingredient being hibiscus has something to do with it. Still, it is rather disappointing that the only thing tangerine or orange about it is the way it smells when the package is first opened.

In Other News

I have been a busy little elf. The MIL leaves Monday to go off to see the Mister's siblings and she is driving the sleigh to deliver our gifts to the niece and nephews. So I have been wrapping and ribboning all of that. I figure, too, that I need to get the other stuff off with UPS, so a box is ready for my siblings. There is a box to be readied for Michigan another for Washington and lastly, which should be firstly because it contains a bday present for the Mother of the Pea (identity lost already, sorry Lynn,) California. We won't even get into the Santa's helper obligations... that's what the last morning of preschool is for. All this merriment and I have decided that my disposition is not one to write a merry letter this year. I don't need anymore stress. The boys will not cooperate for a respectable picture. I am not sending out the usual cards. Bah Humbug. Besides, all you do is toss it, probably don't even recycle it. Why bother? Ok, here is a deal, you send me a card, I will send you a card.

To Knit or Not to Knit

Laurie suggested that I need my own commuting knit time. She says I am allowed 40 minutes in the morning and in the afternoon. I have been trying, but somehow, it isn't all I would like it to be. I did take 25 minutes this morning. I had to get INBA to a Rock class at the Science Center, so it was knit or bathe. I did bathe, I thought the other parents might appreciate that more. I did work on the MIL's second sock while INBA learned about igneous rocks and the hardness scale. I am decreasing. I think they will be her bday present.
I will have to post pics of INBA's red socks- they have a blue heel and toe- cutest socks ever. I am almost done with the first. I am also thinking of withholding them to put in his stocking (it cracks me up to no end to put socks in the stocking.) The next pair of red socks will have a little cable in them, I think.
Speaking of cables... The Mister's Blue Cable Sweater... 2 rounds more than last Friday at knitting. Honest, I really really really love the mister... it is just so big!! And he is a skinny guy!!! God Bless you girls with guys and girth. I dunno, I guess I could blame the color. Laurie showed me how to cable without the needle. Incredibly handy trick. I just need to do it. do it. do it. do it. OK, FINE!!!