Thursday, July 31, 2008

Hiking with Baby

I wish I had gotten pictures of this, but my camera battery was dead.

This morning, I met a friend at her house, and we drove over to the local nature center. There we went on a 4 mile hike. I was torn before we went - do I look forward to it, or do I consider hiking with baby the highest form of torture?

I had a fanny pack (thanks REI!) full of water, burp cloth, diaper and wipes, and sunblock. I strapped Kicker into his baby bjorn, and off we went!

We started out walking over a bridge, where there was a stream filled with turtles! Turtles, people! Real live animals in Southern California! Whodathunkit? We went a little further, and saw a rabbit run across the path. Over head, there was some sort of raptor flying. Butterflies flew all around. Squirrels played on tree branches. Ducks quacked, and fish swam by. I felt like I was in the wilderness, instead of the city.

Kicker had a blast. Heck, I had a blast. Clearly, this was not torture (other than doing 4 miles with a baby strapped to me - that'll burn some calories).

After we finished, and were heading back to the car, I realized I have a trail jogging stroller that Hubby bought me, and I've never used. I may try that out next time, but maybe not - it proved doable to have Kicker in the carrier. I'll definitely charge my camera battery next time, though.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

WW: Fuzzy

Introducing Bear and Kira. Now with so much fuzz, you can feel it through your screen.

Kira (at the top) is a Siberian Husky, and Bear (on the bottom) is a German Shepherd.

For more WW posts, please visit the WW Hub or 5 Minutes for Mom.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Haveil Havalim!

Frume Sarah has put together a great Haveil Havalim for us.

What is a Haveil Havalim, you ask? Well, let me quote:

Founded by Soccer Dad, Haveil Havalim is a carnival of Jewish blogs — a weekly collection of Jewish & Israeli blog highlights, tidbits and points of interest collected from blogs all around the world. It’s hosted by different bloggers each week and coordinated by Jack. The term ‘Haveil Havalim,’ which means “Vanity of Vanities,” is from Qoheleth, (Ecclesiastes) which was written by King Solomon. King Solomon built the Holy Temple in Jerusalem and later on got all bogged down in materialism and other ‘excesses’ and realized that it was nothing but ‘hevel,’ or in English, ‘vanity.’

Sunday, July 27, 2008

7 Facts about Me.

Karen at Busy Mamas tagged me with a 7 facts meme. Thanks, Karen!

Here are the rules for the 7 facts meme:

  • List these rules on your blog.
  • Share seven facts about yourself on your blog.
  • Tag seven people at the end of your post by leaving their names, as well as leaving links to their blogs.

And here are my 7 facts:

  1. I always thought I was a cat person, until my Hubby got me a dog. I asked for a kitten for my birthday one year, and he brought home a German Shepherd puppy. When Hubby said he wanted a second dog, after he wore me down, he got me to agree to a small dog, like a terrier. He brought home a Siberian Husky.
  2. I used to be afraid of German Shepherds, having been bitten by one as a child on the face. Since having owned one, I've learned that they're great dogs, and super sweet. My Bear is the silliest, sweetest dog I've ever met.
  3. I discovered my first grey hair on my wedding day, when I was 23. I've been dying my hair for a few years now. My mother, who is in her 60s, still has fewer grey hairs on her head than I do.
  4. I have a cookbook addiction. I've managed to restrain myself to about 50 cookbooks, but it's been a struggle. I love them all - even the ones with ridiculously complicated dishes; I just open them up, and imagine the situation where I'd make them.
  5. I married my first serious boyfriend. I met him when I had just turned 20, at a Halloween party, of all things. I was dressed up as Belle, in the big golden ball gown. Yep, I was dressed up as a princess, and I met my prince.
  6. I broke my nose 3 times as a child. When I was 5, I was spending the summer with my Grandma, who didn't think I need to wear a seat belt. Just down the street from her house, after a sudden slamming of the brakes, I hit the dash. The second time, I was seven years old, and two boys were fighting at recess, and rolled into me, knocking me to the ground. The third time was just a couple of months later, when I got thrown from a see-saw. My nose slightly resembles a 'J' now. Other than having a hard time breathing through my nose during allergy season, I wouldn't get my nose fixed for anything; I think it gives my face character.
  7. I hate wearing shoes. Which is odd, considering I hate how my feet look. I think they look like Fred Flintstone feet, and they're a size 10. But still, I can't stand shoes. I do, however, like socks. I have a ton of different wacky pairs of colorful socks. Until recently, in fact, I didn't own any plain white socks.
Phew! Got 'em all.

The seven bloggers I've tagged to share 7 facts about themselves are:
Colleen @ Mommy Always Wins, Frume Sarah, Kim @ What's that Smell?, Marissa @ Mama Sparkles, Michelle @ Scribbit, Amy @ Crunchy Domestic Goddess, and Courtney @ A Mom Speaks. Please don't feel obligated to do this, but it sure is fun to participate!

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Spiders. Why did it have to be spiders?

I hate spiders. HATE them. Loathe and fear them. In fact, having a spider killer on call may have factored into why I married Hubby in the first place.
If I see a spider, I squeak for Hubby, and he comes to the rescue.
Not too long ago, I thought I was being *so* brave, because there was a big spider right near the baby. Instead of calling for Hubby, and startling poor Kicker by making a big production out of it, I decided to suck it up, and *SAVE* my precious son.
So I killed it. I killed that spider dead.
I proudly called to Hubby to tell him what I'd done. He just rolled his eyes at me, and walked away. He totally dismissed my heroics! I, mean, c'mon! I totally saved our son from certain icky-spider doom!

This post was inspired by Flashback Fridays at Mommy Always Wins.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Kicker's first flight

We got to the airport early this morning, and checked in. No problem, so far. We went over to the TSA security line, and paused - uh-oh. Escalator + Stroller =/= safe.
Aha! Around the corner is an elevator, with a TSA person standing in front of it. No line, and no worries! Hubby, Kicker and I walk up to the TSA person, and show our boarding passes.
Hubby, having become accustomed to a certain level of "service" by TSA, asks, "I have to go back over there, right? Or can I ride up with them?"
The TSA person says, "Yup. You have to go back over there."
"Really?" I ask, bewildered.
"No, no. I was kidding!" the TSA agent smiles. Wow, welcome change from previous trips.
We go up the elevator, and get to the continuation of the TSA security line. We step into line, show our boarding passes again, and walk over to the bins.
1 bin - the diaper bag.
2 bins - the carry on, full of baby gear, and two books for Mommy and Daddy.
3 bins - the car seat base.
4 bins - the camera bag, for taking pictures of Kicker and the rest of the family.
5 bins - our shoes.
6 (didn't fit in a bin) - the car seat.
7 (also not in a bin) - the stroller.

We load it all up, feeling slightly overwhelmed - we took up the entire row for bins! It goes through, and we get told that we forgot a bottle in one of our bags. Never mind that Kicker doesn't use bottles. Never mind that the bag they're going through isn't the diaper bag. The TSA guy says they're double-checking it because, while they weren't sure they saw one in the X-Ray, Moms always forget a bottle of formula in one of the bags.
We get to our flight, and hear an overhead page - whoops, we forgot the car seat base. Hubby hurrys back to the checkpoint.
At the gate for our flight, meanwhile, there's a second overhead page. They're calling for us at the gate. Our flight's not scheduled to leave yet, but they've already boarded everyone. I guess everyone else arrived early.
We get on the plane, and discover that they've assigned us seats with the baby in the exit row. Whoops! It's a completely full flight, but they convince the people in the very back of the plane to switch with us. They push off early from the gate, and we're off!
Kicker behaves so well during the flight. No fussing, no crying. Towards landing, Kicker falls asleep, and sleeps clear through deboarding. We wait for everyone else to get off the plane, and make our way off the plane. The stroller is waiting there for us, and we get to baggage claim. Again, our bags are there already waiting for us. Smooth sailing.
We look around, but Hubby's Dad isn't there waiting. Whoops! That's okay, we got in early. Grandpa arrives a little bit later, and we begin the task of loading the car. We load our stuff, completely filling the back of Grandpa's SUV. Kicker has a *lot* of stuff.

We made it!

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Happy Birthday, Hubby!

Happy Birthday, Hubby!

I love you with all my heart, and always will.

I hope that this year is filled with lots of joy and happiness for you, and us as a family.

I'm so lucky to have you in my life. And, may I just say, you have gotten so good looking with age, I'm lucky to have you as my eye-candy. ;)


Wednesday, July 23, 2008

WW: When did they get so big?

Kicker turns 6 months old this Friday.

Hubby turns 38 years old this Thursday.

Time is flying by so quickly - it seems like just yesterday this photo was taken.

It seems like just weeks ago, instead of 11 years, that I met Hubby.

For more Wordless Wednesday posts, check out 5 minutes for Mom, or the WW Hub.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Mailbox, open mailbox!

You're insane! Nobody uses Microsoft Works!

Monday, July 21, 2008

Hubby's Birthday

So, Hubby turns 38 this Thursday. Yay, Hubby! However, we're leaving on a jet plane (but I do know when I'll be back again) early Friday morning, so I wanted to celebrate with him this weekend.
I had originally planned to just take him to dinner, just him, Kicker and I. But, talking with some friends Friday night, it got mentioned that there was a new Spanish tapas restaurant not far from our house. Suddenly, we were trying to throw together a surprise lunch for Hubby!
It was great how quickly it pulled together - I love the magic of cell phones and text messages. One of our friends even offered to make cupcakes (she rocks!).
So, Sunday morning, my whole job is to get the present and camera into the car without him noticing, and get him to the restaurant. Simple enough, no?
We leave the house, and go over to the local motorcycle store (a rant for another post - Hubby bought a motorcycle). I don't even have to stall or do anything; Hubby's able to waste tons of time here without Kicker's or my help. We then stroll over to the Disney store, and look around at all the cute stuff that we absolutely do not need. Kicker, of course, tries to reach for everything brightly colored and shiny (he's so like his Daddy).
I feel my cellphone vibrate - that means it's time to head to the restaurant! I guide Hubby out of the restaurant and tell Hubby that I'm starving, and taking him to lunch (true, and true). I open the car door to put Kicker in his car seat, and think, "I'm home-free! We're less than 5 minutes away!"
Of course, you know that's just asking for trouble.
So, Hubby opens up the rear car door, where I've hidden the camera bag under a blanket. Why he does this, I have no idea. I mean, he never goes into the back seat, unless he's putting the baby in the car. But, of course, he does. And he sees a corner of the camera bag peeking out, so he takes a look.
"Honey, why is the camera in the car?"
Think, Channah, think! "Didn't you leave it in there from last night?" We were at a party last night, where he had the camera.
"No, I brought it in."
"Oh." I start the car. "Okay," I smile. "I wanted some pictures of you - you've been taking all the pictures lately, and I wanted some pictures of you and the baby before we go to your parents. I was thinking we'd go to the park."
We get to the restaurant at exactly 1 o'clock. He grabs the camera bag from the car. "You know, we don't have the stroller with us for the park." Uh-oh, does he know?
There's a huge table set up for 15 people (14 and Kicker), and just one other couple. "Surprise!" they say.
Hubby smiles at me. Yup, he knew.

I won an I Tunes gift card from Twenty Four at Heart! Awesome! Now I can download some music that isn't for Kicker! I think I'll download some new jogging songs, so I can try to get my pre-pregnancy body back.
Thanks, Twenty Four at Heart!

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Still lucky!

Woohoo! I won something again!

Thanks to Mama Sparkles, I won a Little Capers superhero outfit for Kicker!

Hubby and I spent a while looking at all of them, trying to decide which one to get, since they're all so cute! Finally, we decided that our son is a Lightening Super hero!

I can't wait to see Kicker all dressed up in this! Thanks again, Mama Sparkles!

Saturday, July 19, 2008

The noise

Kicker has a new trick - he blows raspberries. I find it absolutely adorable, and he is fascinated with his new noise. He loves blowing raspberries, and loves looking at my face after he does it, to see if I noticed and am smiling back at him. My kid is so cute.

So, last night we were in service, Hubby, Kicker and I. Our friends were sitting in the row directly behind us. The rabbi began her sermon, and I was listening intently, when right as the rabbi finished one of her points, Kicker blows his biggest raspberry to date.

Suddenly, I felt like everyone in the entire congregation heard it and was looking at us. My friends behind me are cracking up. Hubby starts chuckling. Kicker giggles. I can't help it; I begin giggling. Hubby quickly takes Kicker out to the hallway, but the damage is done. The rabbi is still giving her sermon, and her eyes meet mine in the crowd - I can tell she's puzzled; what about her sermon has me wracked with silent giggles?

I finally pull it together, and suddenly, I get a poke from behind, and a whisper, "How much more do I owe now for your son's college fund?" I can't help it, I start giggling again.

After service, Kicker is strangely silent on the raspberry front -probably because it's past his bedtime. We all mingle and chat for a while. Right as we're getting ready to leave, we bump into our rabbi. We make small talk for a moment, and Kicker lets out a couple of big raspberries. I start giggling again, but now I can at least explain why to the rabbi.

I think she believed me.

Cheesecake at a Bargain!

$1.99 cheesecake slices at Cheesecake factory?

You betcha! On 7/30/08, I hope to be at the Cheesecake factory to celebrate their 30th anniversary, with a slice of $1.99 cheesecake.

I'm going to tell Hubby it's part of my new budget strategy - see, we're eating out at a place with a sale going on, so clearly, it's being frugal, no?

Friday, July 18, 2008

Dr. Horrible!

What's this, you say? You're not watching Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along-Blog? Then you're missing out! Heck, I'd go so far as to say you were doing yourself a great disservice!

C'mon! Josh Whedon, Neil Patrick Harris, and Nathan Fillion (ooh! Be still my beating heart)! What more could a girl ask for?

Dr. Horrible has a PhD in Horribleness (he's working on his catch-phrase, don't worry), but I must say, I found his blog anything-but.

Okay, had to post a picture of Nathan Fillion goodness. Mmm...

I won, I won!

I opened my email this morning, and in it I found the following suprises!

I won a T-Mobile@Home t-shirt, courtesy of Motherhood Uncensored! Thanks a bunch!

Also, I found that I'd won a gift certificate for my own KozyPal Shopping Cart Cover, courtesy of Traveling with Baby! Yay! I'm excited about that, so much! I've got my eye on the Arghhh - Pirates pattern, I think (it's hard to choose, they're all so cute!).

So, is it anyone else's lucky day?

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Book Club Carnival!

Mel, A Dramatic Mommy needs inspiration. You see, she's supposed to be reading Love Monkey by Kyle Smith, and she's not getting into it. So she's asked each of us to please help her out with new book suggestions, by letting her know what we're currently reading!

So, I'm reading Magician: Apprentice by Raymond E. Feist. From Google Books, a brief synopsis:

Pug and Tomas are two kitchen boys who dream of being heroes one day in the medieval fantasy world of Midkemia. But as the boys start on the path to manhood and begin their apprenticeships to their respective masters, they one day stumble upon a strange shipwreck and learn that invaders from a strange and distant world have found a way to invade Midkemia through portals known as "rifts" and are preparing for a full scale assault. As Tomas learns to be a soldier and Pug studies the path of a magician, both boys find themselves growing into the heroes they had hoped to become - but growing apart as the effects of the Riftwar change both of their lives forever.

And, as requested, 3 sentences from page 38:
In his boyish imaginings he had sailed ships, hunted great monsters, and saved the nation. In quieter moments of reflection he had wondered if he would spend his life building ships, making pottery, or learning the trader's skill, and speculated on how well he would do in each of those crafts. But this one thing he never thought of, the one dream that never captured his fantasies, was that of becoming a magician.
So, what are you reading this week?

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Barukh Dayan Emet

A moment of silence please.

Hezbollah turned over the bodies of the two Israeli soldiers, Ehud Goldwasser and Eldad Regev, today.

My prayers are with their families.

WW: On a clear day

For more WW posts, go to the WW Site, or 5 Minutes for Mom.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

What to do with stale matzah

Feed the ducks, of course!

Kicker and I took a walk around the park today, and then we met some friends to feed the ducks. I had a partial box of whole-wheat matzah leftover from passover, which made perfect duck food! Kicker had a blast feeding the ducks - well, scratch that, he had a blast watching the ducks, while the rest of us fed them.

Afterwards, we had a nice leisurely lunch in the park, where Kicker played in the baby bjorn on my chest, while I ate, trying not to drop food on my son.

It was really fun! I got to hang out with another grown-up, and her daughter and my son got to entertain each other! Of course, her daughter is a year older than my son, so not the *perfect* play-group match, but still- very nice, and worked well enough!

Monday, July 14, 2008

Reason 8.015658140212735505073350356849e+43 I know he loves me

There was one of these waiting for me in the fridge today.

Crib Recall!

Yikes! Hubby and I need to buy a new crib for Kicker ASAP. There's been a crib recall.

Check out this recall notice for Jardine cribs. Jardine cribs were sold at BabiesR'Us, which is where we got ours. The cribs being recalled were from January 2002 to May 2008 - that's a long stretch! We bought a lifetime crib back in January from there, and, sure enough, it's on the list.

On the inside rail of your crib, check for the model number. Here is Jardine's recall website, where they'll have you fill out a form. If you have questions, call 1-800-646-4106; that's Jardine's recall hotline.

Thanks again, Freebies 4 Mom, for letting me know about such an important piece of news.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Free Ice Cream!

Wienerschnitzel is giving away free ice cream (or a free chili dog) Tuesday, July 15th from 5pm to 8pm!
Yes, FREE ICE CREAM (or a chili dog - meh, I'd rather have ice cream)!

Thanks, Freebies 4 Mom, for letting me know about the free ice cream (or chili dog)!

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Who buys these things?

What on earth?

KittyWigs truly disturbs me. I mean, cats are (usually) fuzzy. Why do we need to add a wig to them? And do cats care about wearing the latest hairdo? Of course not - these wigs are probably amusement for some bizarre owner, and the cat tolerates it for a moment or two, and then it's one more useless piece of junk lying around the house.

I think KittyWigs may disturb me even more than BabyToupees.

Friday, July 11, 2008

How to make Sopaipillas

Sopaipillas are a thing of my childhood. Just smelling one brings me back to summers on my grandparents' farm in New Mexico, helping Grandma make the pillowy fry bread, watching her roll out the dough with her special wooden sopaipilla roller.
If you go to a New Mexican restaurant anywhere but New Mexico, they try to serve these as desert. They can be, but in New Mexico, they're served *with* your food. They're fry bread, and you can cover them with honey, or fill them with chile and meat and beans (that's called a 'Stuffy'), or whatever you like.


4 cups flour
4 tablespoons shortening (I had someone tell me they've used oil, but I haven't tried it, so it's up to you - I'm sticking with what I know works)
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/2 cups warm water
1 teaspoon salt
Oil (for frying)

1. Combine flour, baking powder, and salt in a medium-sized mixing bowl, and cut in shortening.
2. Make a well in the center of your dry ingredients (stick your mixing spoon handle or finger into the center, and make a hole). Add the water to your dry ingredients and work into dough.
3. Knead the dough until smooth, then cover, and set aside for 20 minutes. Go fantasize about how good these are going to taste.
4. Heat about 2 inches of oil in a heavy pan at medium-high heat.
5. Roll the dough to about an 1/8-inch thickness onto a lightly-floured board. Cut dough into 4-inch squares and fry until golden on both sides, turning once. If the oil is hot enough, the sopaipillas will puff up, and become hollow shortly after being placed in the oil.
6. Drain sopaipillas on paper towels.
7. Eat!! Take a sopaipilla, drizzle honey all over it, and take a nice bite!

These go really great with spicy food, which is something I love.

This recipe was prompted by An Island Life's Group Writing Project.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Little boy spray-painted by gangster

What is this world coming to, when things like this happen? From the LA Times: "Teen spraying graffiti allegedly paints face, body of 6-year-old boy."

A teenage gang member was arrested Wednesday for allegedly spray-painting the face and body of a 6-year-old boy who saw him vandalizing a wall, authorities said.

Another teenager allegedly restrained the child while the 15-year-old who was arrested sprayed him with blue paint, said Los Angeles County Sheriff's Capt. James Hellmold.

The boy's mother found him covered in paint and crying, Hellmold said.

The incident occurred on the afternoon of June 25 in Willowbrook, an unincorporated area near Compton.

"This actually shocks the conscience," said Hellmold, captain of the Lynwood sheriff's station. "You see a lot on things done by gang members, but even in gang crime terms this crosses the line. This is horrendous."

He said he hoped deputies soon would also arrest the teenager who held the child down.

"We aren't about to let anyone get away with such a horrible act," Hellmold said.

He said the teenager in custody provided clues that helped police arrest him because he sprayed his gang affiliation and moniker on a nearby wall just before attacking the child. People in the community also came forward and helped deputies identify him, Hellmold said.

The 15-year-old was already in custody on suspicion of theft but was detained Wednesday on suspicion of kidnapping, assault with a caustic chemical and felony vandalism.

Hellmold said both suspects are considered gang members, but he declined to release the name of the gang, saying he did not want them to garner any claim to the area.

It's not enough to graffiti everywhere, but now gang members have to terrorize little children, too? To hold that poor little boy down and cover his face and body with spray-paint?

Did doing this make the big bad gangster feel better? Did it make him feel tougher? Was the 6 year old somehow emasculating him? What part of humanity is missing, when we would so willingly harm a child in this fashion?

Argh. I can't even believe how angry this makes me. That poor child. I need Kicker to wake up from his nap, so I can cuddle him, and know that the whole world hasn't gone completely mad.

Brain Freeze!

Tomorrow is Free Slurpee Day! Yup - July 11th, aka 7-11. In honor of which, 7-11 is giving away a 7.11 ounce size free slurpee to people (which, really, is about as much as I need, even in their sugar-free varieties).
Now I'm picturing sitting under a tree at the park with Kicker, sipping my slurpee. Sounds like a plan!

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

WW: King of the Jungle

For more Wordless Wednesday posts, click here or here.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

It's always been about the shoes

Now, my husband would dispute this, but I'm not that into shoes, really. I like comfortable shoes, and if they're really cute, bonus! Compared to most women I know, I don't have that many shoes. That being said, I probably would be really into shoes, if I didn't have big feet. I wear a size 10 - most cute shoes don't seem to come that big, or they just look weird on my feet (or they're too expensive - I'm all about shopping on a budget!).

Any way, the reason I mention this is because I was reading an article on National Geographic stating they've discovered that humans wore shoes as far back as 40,000 years ago (10,000 years than previously discovered). Wow, that's a long time! And yet, women's footwear could still double as torture-devices!

But at some point shoes stopped being mere protection and become a fashion item.

Some anthropologists have suggested that even the earliest shoes may have served a more symbolic than protective function.

Beads found around the ankles and feet of human skeletons dated to 27,000 years ago suggest the presence of decorated footwear, Trinkaus said.

"History is replete with examples of impractical, irrational shoes," noted shoe museum curator Semmelhack.

"The actual first shoes may have been created out of necessity. But elements of irrationality probably crept in very early on," she said.

"Even these ancient people were probably trying to express something."

See, Hubby? Shoes are about expressing oneself! So lay off my shoes, buddy.

Monday, July 7, 2008

Baby food tasting?

Wow, every now and then, I realize exactly how much of a rookie mom I am.

I've been to wine tastings, food tastings, cake tastings (btw, any brides to be in the audience? I'm always willing to help with that one), beer tastings, vodka tastings (which, someday, I'll blog about - very funny story), and chocolate tastings (chocolate is so much more than just "food").

So, I really shouldn't have been suprised to hear about baby food tastings. Yet, I totally was. While Kicker's not going to start baby food for another few weeks (I can't believe he's almost 6 months old, already!), I still thought I might have heard of these kinds of baby food boutiques before now.

Now, I plan to make most of Kicker's baby food. Okay, stop laughing at me, all you moms out there. I know what you're thinking; I was passed down all these baby food cookbooks *unused* by other moms, so I know what I plan and what may happen aren't necessarily the same thing. But still, that's what I plan.

Anyways, even though I'm planning to make most of his foods, I think it might be fun to go check out one of these baby food tasting places. But yikes! Their food is expensive. $3.25 a jar? I wonder - how much of their business is curious people like me, who stop in once to have their baby try it, and buy a single jar or two, or actual repeat customers, who don't mind shelling out that much money for fresh baby food?

Friday, July 4, 2008

Hopefully we're moving.

Hubby, Kicker and I just finished looking at places to live. After the dog attack, I've finally seen the light, and agree with Hubby that it's time for new digs.
We've decided to move closer to Hubby's work, which is also great, because two couples that are friends of ours will live within a mile of us.

Wish us luck!

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Wonderspot is giving away a trip to BlogHer!

Yup, that's right - Wonderspot is giving away a pass and hotel room for BlogHer to some lucky winner. Thank you, Kirtsy, for introducing me to Wonderspot, btw - I began reading her old posts, and now I have someone new to my RSS feed.

Anyways, all Wonderspot asks is that you a) post a comment stating what you blog about, and b) host a small giveaway on your site. That's it.

I'm so excited - I want to go to BlogHer, but it's sold out, and even if it wasn't, now that I'm a SAHM, our disposable income just isn't what it was.

Can't Have it Both Ways

Why is it, that, I ask my sister to try to spend more time with me, but when she asked me today to join her at IHOP for a late lunch with her and her friends, I mentally cringed (at more than the thought of eating at IHOP, even)?

I love my sister, but her choice of friends and mine are two completely different things. And that's okay, but after having spent an hour with them, listening to the non-stop chatter of how a small tiny little town back east is absolutely identical to San Francisco, Scottish money is just like Disney Dollars, that if you are a little bit uncomfortable in social situations it is clearly Asperger's, and how chatting on the internet is so much better than talking in real life, that I was ready to SCREAM.

Thank goodness I actually am busy next week when they invited me to go to Disneyland with them. The thought of dealing with the heat, crowds, baby, and THEM was strictly more than I could bear. I thanked them politely for their offer, though. After all, my sister is friends with them, which means there must be something more to them that you can't see in an hour at IHOP.

I hope.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Pit Bull Attack

This is a really hard post for me to write, because it brings back the terror of the moment.

On Monday afternoon, while Kicker was napping, I decided to step into a cool shower. I was just pulling back the shower curtain when I heard my dogs frantically barking and growling. I left the bathroom, and headed into the master bedroom where Kicker's cradle is - all clear there. I peaked my head out through the other bedroom door to the front room (my house is weird - each bedroom has two doors; one door leads into the bathroom hallway, the other door leads into the main part of the house).

Yikes! A pit-bull was part-way into my house, attacking my German Shepherd!

We live in a house built in 1920, and it doesn't have air-conditioning. So, to keep things livable, I leave windows open for air, and use lots of fans. I had the windows open in my bedroom, but the blinds closed, since Kicker was napping. However, the window immediately next to the front door, which is just on the other side of the doorway where Kicker's cradle is, was open, along with the blinds pulled up.

The pit-bull was ferociously trying to get into my house. I quickly started pushing on my window with all my might (these windows open inwards to the house, as opposed to modern windows, which slide), and kept struggling until I got it closed, and the pitbull was on the outside. At this point, the owner appears, and grabs his dog's chain/leash (and I realize that I'm flashing the neighborhood). I recognize the owner (as I drop to the floor) - he's the guy who lives across the street with the two terrifying-sounding pitbulls.

He takes his dog's leash, and, along with his other dog, takes them for a walk.

I sit there for a moment, dumbfounded. I then quickly separate my dogs - checking each for cuts or wounds. I find a couple of drops of blood on my tile, but I can't find the scratches they're from.

I run to the baby - he didn't even stir during all of this. I grab my cell phone, and call my Hubby. I begin blubbering, and sob out the whole story to him. Hubby is the voice of reason I needed right then - he tells me to call Animal Control (AC) and then the police.

I leave a message for AC, explaining that I just had to fend off a pit-bull who was invading my home. I then call the police, but, unfortunately, they tell me I just have to wait for AC to respond. After what seems like forever, AC calls back (even though I know, logically, it was only minutes later, it sure seemed like they took their own sweet time). I explain what happened, and the AC dispatcher says they're sending someone right out.

I wait in the bedroom, looking out the window while pacing. Kicker stirs a little in his sleep, and, I admit it, I woke him and picked him up, needing to cuddle him. If that dog had come in a different window - just two feet over, he would have been at my son's cradle. If that dog had come in just two minutes later, I would have been in the shower, and might not have been there. This whole thing could have ended so badly, I just needed to hold Kicker.

AC drove up, and I ran out to meet the officer, still clutching Kicker (though, I'd found the time to put on some clothes, thank you). I told the officer what happened. She asked me when the dog had attacked; I checked my cell phone, and realized that by now, an entire hour had elapsed. The neighbor still hadn't returned from his walk with his vicious hellbeasts.

She gave me a complaint form to fill out; apparently, a 'Dangerous or Vicious Dog' investigation will be done, with it's outcome almost certain, she promised. At this point, the neighbor was strolling back up the street. I pointed him out to the AC officer, but as soon as he saw her, he quickly took off with his dogs.

Hubby showed up at this point. He had left work the second he hung up with me, even though he needed to work late that night (aww). He repeated my earlier questions to the AC officer : what can we do; if this was your family, what would you do. I could tell that he felt as helpless as I did. I mean, who ever expects something to come in through a window? No screen would stop a dog that size, and thank goodness the owner came right when he did, because what would have happened if the dog had decided to come through the glass?

The AC officer drove around, looking for the owner, but he was still hiding out somewhere. The AC officer took a look at my dogs, to verify that the scratches were minor (which was kind of her - I wouldn't have wanted to miss something).

Hubby decided that we needed to get out of the house, and go out to dinner. Burgers are Hubby's comfort food of choice, so off to Ruby's diner we went.

When we got back, the AC officer was still searching for that damn neighbor. I wonder if his dogs are even licensed.

WW: Swingtime Fun

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

This sounds like a movie plot...

I can't believe this. Tell me if you've seen this movie:

A Giraffe helps zebras, llamas, and camels escape.

No, this isn't the plot to Madagascar 2, it's what happened at a circus in Amsterdam.

From the Washington Times article:

Amsterdam police say 15 camels, two zebras and an undetermined number of llamas and potbellied swine briefly escaped from a traveling Dutch circus after a giraffe kicked a hole in their cage.

Police spokesman Arnout Aben says the animals wandered in a group through a nearby neighborhood for several hours after their 5:30 a.m. breakout.

The animals were back at the circus later Monday after being rounded up by police and circus workers with the assistance of dogs. Aben says neighbors fed some of the animals _ which he said was a bad idea _ but they were tame and nobody was hurt.

Says Aben: "You have to imagine somebody rubbing his eyes first thing in the morning and saying, 'Am I seeing things or is that 15 camels walking past?'"

Nobody's talking yet about movie rights.

Dang! Just discovered as I was writing this that there really is a Madagascar 2 coming out soon. Hmm... too bad this wasn't used as a publicity stunt.