Wednesday, December 31, 2008
1.) Continue doing Lone Star Baby-centric things. We did a good job on that one in 2008 - probably too good of a job - we need to ease up a bit on the structured activities. 2.) Make room for more Lone Star Girl-centric things. 3.) Do more organizing this summer - maybe straighten up one more room - baby steps.
At 37, I am getting old so this needs to be my year for weight loss. I don't think I can safely be this heavy without estrogen's protective effects and my estrogen will be ebbing away ere long. I need to lose 49 pounds to get to where I want to be weight-wise, so my goal is 49 by 40. For 2009, the goal is 20 pounds - baby steps.
1.) Keep working on the serenity. 2.) Convince the kids that some things must be memorized, no matter how much we all hate that.
1.) Can't say I did that well on last year's resolution to spend at least 10 minutes on it at least 5 days per week, but I am going to amp it up anyway: at least 15 minutes at least 5 days per week. 2.) Also, to be accepted by 5 publications (including online ones) that I have not been published in before.
What are your New Years' Resolutions?
Our Christmas was mostly lovely. The mice arrived, the girls had a lovely time, and we got to spend some very nice time with our Corpus relatives. The Lone Star Baby is at the age where presents are very exciting to her and she built "the coolest, most beautiful-est thing ever" with her new play dough set :
I'm not really a fan of such present-focused phases (but I am a fan of cool play dough!) though I definitely fall under their sway and run around trying to make sure the girls have lots of stuff that will make them happy. We are silly humans.
The best thing about this Christmas to me, besides the kids getting to see their cousins, was that it was the first time in a few years that all six of the siblings of whom I am the eldest were in one place at one time.
As the years pass, I expect it will be even more hard to get all of us together for happy occasions. I hope not, though. I stood on a chair and Sarah on a stool if you are wondering. And I still had to stand on my tiptoes. We have a photo just like this in which I was 18 or so and Jazz just a toddler - we fit better then, but I still wasn't quite tall enough.
The road trips this time around were blessedly uneventful, always excepting that Manana Road exit, which was only a matter of being instantly lost and nothing serious. We are glad to be home! Good night!
Wednesday, December 24, 2008
Santa explained her passion to a kind man at the pet store and they entered into a series of communications aimed at Santa acquiring two female (male rodent urine is too allergenic) mousekins who, by Christmas Eve, would be old enough to leave their mothers, but not old enough to be knocked up. Both Santa and the pet store man were both so sweet about going to this trouble to satisfy the idealism of a young girl. I understand that the mousekins should end up under the tree by morning ...
Lone Star Pa and I like to sleep in on weekend and vacation mornings since we get very little sleep at all in our workaday lives. Generally, once the Lone Star Baby stopped wanting to nurse back to sleep in the mornings, the only times we got to do this were when the Lone Star Girl generously decided to supervise the Lone Star Baby over cartoons on some such mornings. More lately, though, my repeated (and ignored) admonitions to "play quietly in your room until we get up" have actually been being obeyed! I don't know why, but it has been rather special! In addition to more sleep for the grown-ups, this has also resulted in a deeper interest in legos on the part of the Lone Star Baby, which seems like a lovely bonus to me.
Strange and wonderful times...
Tuesday, December 23, 2008
- submitted one poem
- entered one fiction contest
- followed up on an August book proposal I sent with a phone message to editor
- left a phone message regarding research for an article I've been working on forev-ah.
Monday, December 22, 2008
Sunday, December 21, 2008
I find this sort of talk very frustrating. I know I was as bad about judging other parents as any new mother when I was a new mother - I think new mothers do that because they are so afraid of making bad choices that they just have to see choices that are different from their own as wrong as a defense mechanism - but none of the people I was talking to were new parents by any longest shot, and we were all folks who had experienced enough reality with our kids to know better than to think we had the answers that others should be striving for.
Why must the world continue to bash parents so much? I really think we are all doing the very best we can and that we mostly, except in cases of truly egregious abuse, cannot know the balance of good and bad in another family. I really think we should just respect each other for the very hard work that we are all doing. Parents rock.
Today, our Quaker meeting is having a Meeting for Eating (Christmas potluck) at the home of our clerk and that will be lovely as well.
It's nice to have a little time off from work to actually get to see people!
Saturday, December 20, 2008
The Lone Star Girl is bothered by the fact that I no longer eat nut-laden foods that I used to enjoy, because I can't enjoy them anymore. Bothered by it in a sweet way. Other people are bothered by it in a way that makes me want to beat them with heavy objects - Thanksgiving was fun, and I expect that visiting family at Christmas will be very relaxing as well.
Wednesday, December 17, 2008
Perhaps this season of breaking machines began in the summer when our gas line rusted through and started leaking and had to be replaced. Or when we got stranded in Austin and had to replace the radiator in Lone Star Pa's car. Or when the power steering fluid in my car started a slow leak. Perhaps it began in September or early October - whenever it was that the water heater in the garage that heats the water for our washer broke. We haven't replaced that. Washing our laundry with cold water isn't such a big deal, except that we are supposed to wash the Lone Star Girl's bedding in hot water because of her dust mite allergy. And there were those lice the day before Halloween. So it would be good to have a hot water heater there again, and I thought we would save up for one after a bit and all - but things just didn't work out that way as you will see. And we had the dryer, after all, the heat of which could be used for killing dust mites, etc.. So. Perhaps the season began on Halloween when I drove Lone Star Pa's car for the first time in a good while and noticed that it felt tight and difficult to steer. He said that I was feeling it pull right and that it was fine once he fixed the tire involved. Uh huh.
Those previews aside, however, the season got serious the week before Thanksgiving. I started noticing a lot of flickering lights in the house and I also drove Lone Star Pa's car again and found that the steering problem was still there. Our favorite quasi-mechanic shop told us that the power steering pump was about to go and, since having it professionally replaced would cost about as much as the 1994 Camry is worth, I spent a bit of the Thanksgiving break calling and visiting junkyards and Lone Star Pa and my dad spent a couple of really hard days taking out the old power steering pump and putting in the "new" one, because they rock like that. One of my uncles, a journeyman electrician, came over and said an entire breaker box in my house really needed to be replaced, which he then did at cost, with many hours of labor, because he rocks like that. Then he came back twice (as of yesterday) and chased down some other problems, ending with tightening up some connections on a light fixture, so that I finally don't feel frightened of the lights anymore. A couple of weeks ago, my car failed to start at the Lone Star Baby's school after I went to pick her up. Lone Star Pa and my dad got the battery properly watered and charged and it was good to go except that a couple of days later, Lone Star Pa's car wouldn't start so we had to get it all charged and thankfully that looks like it was all it needed. Then the back-up disk for the computer broke and had to be replaced this weekend. Then the dryer broke and the heating element had to be replaced yesterday.
This has been....a little ridiculous, really. As well as a lot expensive. I'm ready for the gremlins to move on.
Saturday, December 13, 2008
I haven't helped much with the troop since the Lone Star Baby came along, and I knew it was time to start pitching in more this year. Cookie mom is the one job I never, ever want to have so I agreed to be the troop's Silver Award advisor as they work on their Silver Award this year and next year.
Things are going to be busy.
*Rules have changed recently so that now they spend two years in each level, but it was different then. - they had one year of Daisies and three years each of Brownies and Juniors.
Thursday, December 11, 2008
I have told my four and a half year old girl that she doesn't have to stop unless she wants to - it is up to her at this point, as I am fine with her occasional nursings. She says she is stopping now and maybe she will - she sounds pretty determined when she's not sounding like she's changed her mind about ever weaning. It is so cold these last few days that I am starting to think that the extra immunities provided by nursing through the winter wouldn't be such a bad thing, but we'll see. She's planning her weaning party - says she'll want a princess cake and for us to decorate the kitchen in princesses. The Lone Star Girl requested a Captain America cake at her own weaning party.
Today marks nine (non-consecutive) years that I have been lactating. It doesn't seem that long.
Saturday, December 06, 2008
Today was the last game of the season - our little Yellow Jackets were so cute! We had a potluck picnic at the park where they practice and have their games at lunchtime a little while after the game, and the kids all got trophies. I actually missed the picnic, showing up with the Lone Star Girl after almost everyone had left because I had to pick her up, but I could tell that The Lone Star Baby and Coach Lone Star Pa had fun.
She likes to roll her eyes at me for suggesting that she take a practice run at the SAT in seventh grade, but I know that underneath her sneering, she is really giving it her all ... because she kind of wants to skip high school. This is a plan I am not thinking I can support, but the merits of which she is still trying to convince me. The other Young Friend in our Quaker meeting, who is three years older than my girl, attended the same public GT program that my daughter is attending for middle school, but then skipped high school and now, at barely 16, is a college sophomore at the local university. My daughter has surprised me by wanting to follow in her footsteps lately.
Their circumstances are, however, somewhat different. Our friend's father teaches at the university and so is around. Also, our friend is a touch more brilliant and a lot more mature, in my opinion, than my also-brilliant but pretty flighty, girl.
I can't see myself going along with this, but I am always glad to see the junior woman aiming for something academic, anyways, so I'm happy to have her trying to convince me. I wish she'd try to convince me with As in all of her academic courses, but she seems to think that would be going too far.
Friday, December 05, 2008
This year, the Lone Star Baby seems particularly enthralled by Christmas lights. We have some on the tree but don't put any up outside because we don't have an outside outlet. She is on the lookout everywhere we go, telling us in the car you look for Christmas lights on that side and I'll look on this side - tell me when you see some. She also has adopted a variety of superlatives much more firmly into her daily vocabulary than before so that she can describe them - wonderful, great, perfect, so beautiful. Just like her.
Thursday, December 04, 2008
Sunday, November 30, 2008
My heart ached to provide a younger sibling to the Lone Star Girl during all the years of her childhood when she was just desperate for one. We needed to wait until we wouldn't have two in daycare, and, more importantly, until Lone Star Pa had a stable and decent wage. In reality, we discovered that we couldn't really afford a baby when we did go ahead and have one, even after our waiting and planning, but we are muddling through. Now, I know that I will probably be too old to have children before we are in a financial and practical place to have another (37 is really already too old, if we are being practical, anyways). I know that the Lone Star Baby will probably not just have to wait too long for her little brother - she probably won't get one at all. That does make me feel sad for her.
I also feel guilty when I consider the fact that in my dreams of more children - which I definitely, impractically have - baby brothers for the Lone Star Baby are notably absent. I never really wanted a son. All my dreams are of daughters. Although I long for a larger family, I like having a cozy house of little women. This reminds me of an essay on Marmee's anger that I read and really related to - read it here if you like. Of course, I am really nothing like Marmee. I have not her calm or her capableness or her virtue. I have her anger, though. And her joy in raising little women. My cozy house of little women.
Saturday, November 29, 2008
That said, I did get some writing done during Thanksgiving Break. I sent off three essays and a poem. I also wrote another essay, am preparing a couple of more things to send off, and did some research for my next column. Not too bad. I would really like my writing productivity to be less erratic, but at this point, I don't really see how that will be happening in the near future, except during school breaks. Some people need less sleep as they get older, I have heard, but that has not been my experience thus far. In fact, my nurse-midwife-health-care-person kind of chewed me out about the fact that I need to be sleeping more at my last annual, even though my mom has always said that sleeping is over-rated. So I don't really see how more time is going to appear. I just don't.
Friday, November 28, 2008
Thursday, November 27, 2008
Wednesday, November 26, 2008
It sort of serves us right, I suppose. It has always been the U.S. that stands up for the formula companies when they are committing atrocities to infants in Third World counties - now they are tainting our own babies' food supplies. What did we really expect?
My assessment - eh. The veggie sausage we used wasn't really very good and we ended up picking it out for the most part. I think it could be good with a veggie sausage that tasted more like the MorningStar Farms brand Breakfast Patties, but I don't know how you'd get that to stick without having to use a blender and all kinds of crazy junk like that, which would not be happening here. The ones with just egg and pastry were fun and the Lone Star Baby and the Lone Star Girl really enjoyed the novelty of it. I don't think I'll be doing it often, though.
Previous themes were "Birth," "Cutting the Cord," and "Coming Home"...now it's time to shake things up! Raising children is hard work and revolution in motion. From rabble-rousing to rampaging toddlers--feel free to interpret the theme wildly.
We are interested in essays, photos, cartoons, or anything else you can come up with!
Because of space limitations, written submissions should be 1500 words or less. Please include a short bio and ordering information for your zine (these will not be part of the word count).
Contributors are asked to edit their own work. Submissions may be spell-checked and reformatted for consistency. Contributors are given the chance to okay any proposed changes before production.
Mamaphiles is a friendly and inclusive project whose goal is self-expression and mutual support. All submissions are accepted. Contributors are invited to join in the collaborative effort, and are asked to assist with marketing and/or production of the zine when possible.
Deadline for submissions: 1 March 2009
Written submissions: Email as a Word attachment to the submission editor, China, at china410 (at) hotmail dot com. Feel free to ask questions.
Visual submissions: Email high-resolution images (300-600 dpi) in .jpg or .tiff formats to both china410 (at) hotmail dot com and the layout designer, Connie, at anarchohippypunk (at) riseup dot net.
For all submissions, please indicate that it's a Mamaphiles submission in the subject line of your email message.
Tuesday, November 25, 2008
Monday, November 24, 2008
Saturday, November 22, 2008
On Thursday night, we went to see the Lone Star Girl in her school production of Alice In Wonderland. They had been performing it for elementary school kids and their fellow middle schoolers at school several times throughout the week, but Thursday was the evening performance for parents. The Lone Star Girl was in the chorus and played the Doorknob. She was adorable. She has enjoyed being in this play so much - the rehearsals and the excitement and the performances. She has really been loving her advanced theatre arts class immensely this year. They made the sets and props and costumes for the play and are preparing for a speech tournament. After living the seedy theatre life myself as a teen, I hadn't really thought that I would want a child of mine involved in such things, but school theatre at any rate is really her niche at this stage and I am so happy for her. It has also provided bonding opportunities as I page through my battered old copy of The Complete Works of William Shakespeare with her, showing her appropriate pieces to use as monologues and duet acts. The only downside is that she is much more interested in practicing her theatre work than in doing her other school work, which has slipped a bit deeper into B-student territory than we would prefer (since she starts getting some grades that go on her high school transcript next year). Still, I am thrilled that she has found her tribe at school.
Last night, the Girl Scout troop went to help serve dinner at Loaves and Fishes, a local soup kitchen that is part of a larger ministry to the homeless in our community. The girls handed out drinks and utensils and cleaned tables. They weren't quite as awed as I would have hoped - I overheard them having quite normal conversations with each other about school and their usual topics. I was hoping they would be more struck by how lucky they are and how many people need their help in this world, but I guess you never can tell how the minds of adolescents will work. I am glad they helped out, just the same.
Meanwhile, I am dodging teen-aged mood swings and trying to instill responsibility as usual. Busy, busy.
Tuesday, November 18, 2008
(Insert book cover picture here)
The best book I’ve read all year! – National Wife Beaters Committee
This book really showed a good set of values that all young couples should follow!
– Misogynist Today Newsletter
What an excellent book! Bella and Edward function like a good American couple! Every woman should be willing to give up everything for a guy! Males are the dominant gender after all. – Patriarchal Times Magazine
Sunday, November 16, 2008
Saturday, November 15, 2008
Friday, November 14, 2008
"There's a hole in that door and we need to duct tape it," she said. I explained that the hole was so we could see who was knocking on our door and that it was not to be taped. She went scurrying off, muttering "White duct tape's for windows, silver duct tape is for doors..."
A very surreal moment.
Tuesday, November 11, 2008
Monday, November 10, 2008
Wednesday, November 05, 2008
Tuesday, November 04, 2008
Monday, November 03, 2008
Lots of people feel pretty disconnected from the democratic process and do not believe that their votes can change much in the world. Voting does matter, though. It matters to all of us.
As mothers, it is impossible not to care about the world in which we are raising our children. We care. We do the things that we believe we can do to build a good future for our babies.
We try lots of things: eating healthy when we are pregnant, nursing, cloth diapers or not, immunizations or not, different educational choices - we are always weighing the pros and cons of millions of daily decisions and trying to decide what will be best for our children. Often, we find ourselves facing choices between options we do not like such as leaving our infant to go to work or doing without health insurance for that same infant. We may want better choices, but we choose, knowing that our choice really matters, right or wrong, and that we have to keep looking for and working for better choices.
Voting is one of these choices that we make for our children.
We may not always love the choices we are given, but we have to choose because we know the outcome will affect the kind of lives our children will lead. It will. We may need to keep working for better choices than the ones some elections offer, but we still have to choose each time.
We have to vote for our hopes and dreams...for the world we want for our children.
If you haven't yet, please go vote tomorrow.
A round-up of voting posts can be found at Chasing Ray.
Sunday, November 02, 2008
The Lone Star Baby had to be something "alive" and "real" for school at Halloween. If we'd known sooner about her little friends, we might just have let her go as one of those, but she chose to be a bee.
She did not really want to be a bee for Halloween, though. She wanted to be a faery princess, which would not fly at school. We went with the faery princess thing for trick-or-treating, but then she started telling everyone she was a butterfly faery. Whatever. She had fun.
On Thursday, I picked the Lone Star Baby up from school, intending to take her to the Lone Star Girl's school for the Halloween festival that the Lone Star Girl's theatre department was putting on as a fundraiser. However, in the bright sunlight of the playground, I saw...black stuff. In the Lone Star Baby's hair. I had seen debris of this sort before. Last year - when she brought home lice. EEK!!!!! I took her home and treated her with Nix and combed through her hair with the nit comb, only finding debris, but it was that sort of debris. We treated the rest of us and picked through our heads late into the night, finding nothing that was not ambiguous. We hauled all the bedding, etc. out to the garage for washing and drying in high heat. We lysol-ed the cars.
We canceled the party.
Even though we were careful and even though we did send the Lone Star Baby back to school for her Halloween carnival the next morning after treatment and combing (with full disclosure, of course), having a bunch of girls sleep in and around our furniture that soon after an outbreak seemed to be asking for trouble. I felt just horrible about it and I know the Lone Star Girl was sad, but she was very sweet about it. We tried to make the weekend as special as we could for her, given that large portions of it had to be taken up with extreme laundry and with the daily combing out of everyone's hair, just in case we missed anything.
There were presents on her birthday morning and there was pizza for supper and later trick-or-treating with the neighborhood kids and erstwhile neighborhood kids and one came over for cake and sorbet afterwards. On Saturday, we took her out to lunch and her auntie took her out to a movie and we watched a DVD at night after the combing rituals. Today, I fixed a special brunch and took her to the mall to get a second piercing in her ears.
I still feel bad, though. She really deserved a better birthday.
Friday, October 31, 2008
Wednesday, October 29, 2008
Tuesday, October 28, 2008
Monday, October 27, 2008
Sunday, October 26, 2008
Saturday, October 25, 2008
- I don't buy the pica story. I've interviewed a lot of parents of hurt children in my day and didn't feel that rang true.
- I think that even if you are a loving parent who is only trying to raise a godly child, if your discipline results accidentally in death, you are still responsible. That's why corporal punishment is so wrong - it is just too dangerous.
- I wrote an article in the July issue of We the People News that addresses my feelings on tragedies like this one.
Thursday, October 23, 2008
Last year, I tried to start reading the Ramona books to the Lone Star Baby, but she really didn't have the attention span for it and we didn't get very far. Our read- aloud relationship has been a lot more spotty than the one I had with her sister. I think this is partly because she doesn't like listening for as long, but also partly because we are so much more busy these days and have less time for reading. We tried again in the spring and now she is into it. We have read through the first books and are now reading Ramona Quimby, Age 8, after which there are two more. The Lone Star Baby has really enjoyed them. I have found reading the Ramona books to her to be even more special than it was to read them to her sister because, at three, the Lone Star Girl was a very sweet and pleasant child who was rarely any trouble (but look at her now!). The Lone Star Baby is our spunky gal, just like Ramona is her Daddy's spunky gal. I love the sensitive way that Cleary portrays the little handful that is Ramona, showing her goodness and always respecting her. I highly recommend these books for preschoolers who are beginning to be ready to listen to chapter books, most especially the spirited ones.
Wednesday, October 22, 2008
Tuesday, October 21, 2008
Monday, October 20, 2008
The Adventures-In-Democracy of Obama Mama And Her Almost Teen-Aged Sidekick, Liberty Girl - Part Two
That was the plan.
We arrived at the office of a local attorney where we had done phone banking before to find it occupied only by a different attorney, a woman and some police officers. It was kind of weird. They assured us that there was no phone banking there and that they did not know where it was, so we left. We drove somewhat aimlessly down the street that the Party Headquarters supposedly, according to their website, had moved to, although we had tried this before without finding it at the street number that was on the site. I had a hunch that it might be at a particular shopping center owned by some folks with political interests on that street, even though that shopping center was pretty far from the alleged address, so we checked there and it was sure enough the place. The Party Chair was there but she didn't know where the phone banking was. She suggested that it might be at a local state representative's office and was gracious enough to call that office, but the nice lady who answered said there was no one there phone banking and she would take a message. I left one.
We did finally get yard signs and bumper stickers. And I made it to story time after all. And there were several phone messages about phone banking waiting for me when we got home.
Sunday, October 19, 2008
Autumn is here at last, even if my keyboard isn't equipped for Spanish. There is a cool breeze in the air and I am starting to finally feel the harvest spirit this weekend, just a little.
We took the girls to the pumpkin patch yesterday and got some pumpkins for the porch and the kitchen. Our autumn wreath is up and I got a fall windsock for the porch with apples on it. Today, Lone Star Pa and I cut out some black and orange construction paper for future Lone Star Baby crafts and he is going to take her to a fall festival after Meeting this afternoon. I got ingredients for making pumpkin bread and picked up a couple of frozen pumpkin pies. Slowly, we are getting into the spirit of things.
I've been feeling pretty overwhelmed lately. People I care about have been going through terrible things. School has been taking all my time and energy and still wanting more and I just had to combine two of my classes last week into one huge class and take on a seventh grade class, which means that things will just be busier and harder. My own kids are very busy with school and activities and we are all exhausted and crabby with each other.
I'm going to try to get my act together and enjoy the cool breezes that are making shy appearances and the waning childhood of my eldest and the waning babyhood of my youngest. I'm going to try to bake and do crafts and spend time outside. And somehow find time to write as well, as these creative slumps really give me the blues.
Autumn blessings to us all.
Saturday, October 18, 2008
To bridge the gap, I signed the Lone Star Baby up for the little TippiToes class at our neighborhood recreation center. I knew she wouldn't learn any real ballet in it and that it wouldn't be good for her in the way that the other class was, but I figured it would keep her happy until we can go back. This company mainly takes these little "dance" classes to daycare centers and recreation centers and I thought it would be just all in good fun. It meets on Monday evenings right before we go to PJ story time at the library, so we rush out at the end and she goes to story time in her ballet clothes instead of her PJs. That part would be okay.
The class is scary, though. The two women who run it really seem to enjoy themselves and they are as sweet and as patient as can be with all the little girls, but...oh...my...heavens. The perkiness and the pinkness of it all just about drives me to homicide. I'd need duct tape if I was taking the Lone Star Girl along. The teachers basically play kiddie music and demonstrate - with great enthusiasm - a variety of motions to the music that the kids try to emulate. It sounds innocent enough, but it is scary. Really scary. They sit around in a circle and take turns saying who their favorite princesses are sometimes. The teachers get scared because an alligator is coming as an intro to one of the songs, but it's okay because it is a pink alligator. There's a song about putting on their make-up. They are all about sparkles.
Pretty much it makes me want to puke.
My feminism has silent screaming fits throughout the entire 45-minute period. I look around to see if the other parents are scared and they look charmed and happy. I feel guilty for not just enjoying the fun that my daughter is having. I feel guilty for exposing her to all that perky pinkness. I don't know how to feel.
I can't wait until summer when we can get back to the ballet school. They had better have a 6pm kinder dance class next fall...I can't take much more of this.
Friday, October 10, 2008
Thursday, October 09, 2008
Saturday, October 04, 2008
Wednesday, October 01, 2008
Tuesday, September 30, 2008
Sunday, September 28, 2008
I am so bleh, though, about my waning childbearing years and the fact that the third little daughter who I have seen so clearly for years - Juniper Elizabeth - and her twin who I see less clearly, through a haze but definitely there (maybe a Briar Ruby) - will probably just have to remain unrealized. It is hard for me to think of no more pregnancies, no more births, no more babies...I don't like it. I'm not ready. I never got the chance to savor it. I will probably never get that chance.
Saturday, September 27, 2008
Thursday, September 25, 2008
Lone Star Pa tried to be really careful and wet scrape, leaving as much intact as possible, but it just didn't work. It got all over the place. Very scary.
So, to wit: before, we had ugly paint but most of the yard was fine. Now, the paint looks okay, but the yard is contaminated with lead. Lovely. Thank you, Texas Windstorm. So sensible.
Monday, September 22, 2008
Sunday, September 21, 2008
Anyway, I hardly think it is the end of the world, no matter how much it creeps me out sometimes, but I do feel it is important to provide some much more progressive takes on her little passion to balance out that stupid mermaid and company. In pursuit of that end, I have tried to find strong princess stories like Tatterhood to expose my little princess to and that seems to work better than directly attacking the values of her pink posse. I recently found a nice library book that suited my purposes in this endeavor - The Apple Pip Princess by Jane Ray. In this story, there are three princess sisters living in a kingdom that has been barren since the death of their mother (interesting twist on the king and the land stories). Dad decides that one of them needs to succeed him and gives them a few days to impress him and prove who should get the job. The two older sisters are very self-involved and embark upon self-involved projects but Serenity brings life and fertility back to the land, using her mother's magic. It is a beautifully told story with gorgeous illustrations and nary a Prince Charming in sight.
Thursday, September 18, 2008
I am having unpleasant dreams about trying to leave work on time to get to Marigold's soccer practice and to leave soccer on time to get to Girl Scouts...my subconscious is having anxiety attacks. Plus I know that now that we are getting to the point where we will have to divide and conquer to be sure they each have at least one parent at most things, they are going to start forming life-long resentments about the parent who missed their thing to go to their sister's thing...I just know it.
Tuesday, September 16, 2008
Sunday, September 14, 2008
The Adventures-In-Democracy of Obama Mama And Her Almost-Teen-Aged Sidekick, Liberty Girl - Part One
Saturday, September 13, 2008
Friday, September 12, 2008
Thursday, September 11, 2008
Monday, September 08, 2008
The Lone Star Baby got lots of games around about the age of three, but she caught on to them more slowly than had her sister. Now, at four, she is just entering her phase of loving lots of kinds of games. I am excited, her love for Pretty, Pretty Princess notwithstanding. She has a really hard time holding a hand of cards in her tiny hands, though, so Lone Star Pa came up with a wonderful invention - he cut a notch half-way down into a board to serve as a card holder for her.
I think he's just the best daddy in the whole world. Is she cute or what?
Thursday, September 04, 2008
Wednesday, September 03, 2008
Monday, September 01, 2008
Friday, August 29, 2008
The Lone Star Girl started seventh grade and I have been doing a lot of talking/e-mailing to the school nurse about where which emergency medications for her allergies should go and all that ... the nurse seems great, much smarter than I. We've also had transportation issues. Our district has made cuts to its school bus routes and we no longer have one. They expect me to let my daughter walk almost two miles to school with all her books across one of the city's busiest streets during rush hour with no crossing guard and through a bit of a dicey area on the other side ... no. I am therefore having to drop her off at school an hour and a half before it starts so that I can then drop the Lone Star Baby off at school, and get to work on time. Fortunately, the Lone Star Girl's wonderful school lets them in the cafeteria that early, so I don't have to worry too much. My sister is probably going to be picking her up from school most afternoons, but she had to leave town this week (right after moving into her new apartment) for a funeral, so I have been zipping out of work at the earliest time we are allowed to leave to get the Lone Star Girl, not something that I would be able to do all the time, and picking her up outside of her school about 45 minutes after she gets out. Whew!
The Lone Star Girl is mostly full of her usual jaded negativity about seventh grade, particularly since she doesn't have lunch with her group of friends, but her school has added a daily Spanish class which makes me happy and she already adores her "advanced" theater arts class. She is really very lucky. School has gone well for me this week, except that I have a nastier version of the Lone Star Baby's cold and am pretty miserable from it, and Lone Star Pa had a good week, too. The Lone Star Baby is jumping right into big girl work at her school - making words with the sandpaper letters and all - we are really proud of her. Her school had a potluck social last night and we enjoyed it before going home to watch Obama's speech.
I really want to go to bed now but I need to watch the news and see what's going on with this hurricane. My brother at Tulane has already been evacuated to Georgia but I have a brother in Houston as well as ourselves to worry about, as well as all those other people ...
Tuesday, August 26, 2008
Saturday, August 23, 2008
Meanwhile, Lone Star Pa and I have taken turns making the Lone Star Girl help us get our rooms set up and school starts Monday, for us and for the Lone Star Girl. Back to crazy days and crazy nights and paces no one should have to keep, people. Modern life...sigh.
Thursday, August 21, 2008
Sunday, August 17, 2008
Wednesday, August 13, 2008
The summer has been mainly lovely - these golden family months are like having a maternity leave every year and are such a blessing. We have been pretty busy. In the main, it has been a doctor summer. For two years now, I have been trying to get a grip on the Lone Star Girl's health, without much support from the doctors I have taken her to, who have pretty much blown me off and said she was fine, when she clearly - to me - was not fine. It seems to come down mainly to bad allergies, mild asthma and some reflux. We spent most of the summer in doctors' offices getting it all straightened out and now she is sleeping in a very dust-controlled environment, getting shots, measuring her peak flows and carrying an Epi-pen. There's still going to be some stuff to straighten out at school, but I feel greatly relieved to finally have a good doctor and some good answers and to be on the right road, even if it is probably going to take another year to see the kind of improvement that will really make her feel much better. She has not enjoyed all of the time at doctor offices and is so accustomed to feeling crappy by now that she doesn't really see the point of treatment, but I'm going to get this girl well, whether she likes it or not.
Monday, August 11, 2008
Sunday, August 10, 2008
Friday, August 08, 2008
Thursday, August 07, 2008
Wednesday, August 06, 2008
Tuesday, August 05, 2008
Monday, August 04, 2008
In 2006, people wrote letters of protest and media outlets made a huge fuss when BabyTalk Magazine featured a close-up of a nursing baby on its cover…although it is a magazine about babies and features many feeding-related articles on a regular basis. People expressed their outrage that their adolescent sons might get hold of such smut. In the same year, Emily Gillette was kicked off of a Freedom Airlines flight for refusing to put a blanket over the head of her nursing child. In a Kentucky Applebee’s Restaurant in 2007, a mother was told that she had to cover her nursing child with a blanket when she was nursing in the restaurant. In that same year, a medical student was not allowed to take time out of her all-day board exam to pump her breasts – is there something wrong with this picture? 2007 was also the year when Bill Maher and Barbara Walters, among other celebrities, felt called to make nasty comments about breastfeeding in public. Most shocking of all, however, is the fact that in 2007, a Houston Ronald McDonald House told a mother that she could not breastfeed her son, who had brain cancer, in the common room of the House, as it might make other people ‘uncomfortable’.
Here in Corpus Christi, I personally know women who have been told that they cannot nurse at swimming pools, the elementary schools of their older children and the public library, even though Texas has a law that protects breastfeeding mothers and children from this sort of harassment. Since the law does not really contain a penalty for its violation, many Texas venues continue to break it with impunity. This sort of treatment tells mothers that they will be second-class citizens if they nurse their children. If they do not want to be vilified for doing what is in the best interests of their children and public heath, they must hide and isolate themselves and their families. This is ridiculous. It is criminal. It is a culture that hurts and even kills children, as four out of a thousand children in the U.S. die from not being breastfed each year, not even counting SIDS deaths, which rarely ever happen to breastfed babies.