Sunday, April 29, 2007
Saturday, April 28, 2007
Back to Pumpkin Delight. I would post her picture here, however, she hates having her photograph taken more than anybody else I have ever met, so I figured I would put a picture of somebody else named Pumpkin Delight. But when I Googled it, all I got was desserts. And Pumpkin Delight isn't much for sweets. So you'll have to do without.
Pumpkin Delight has some fascinating characteristics:
She loves Coke. (The soda, not the drug.) She has an actual mental list of all the restaurants in our city and whether they serve Coke or Pepsi. Just ask her!
If she even sits next to somebody who is eating fish, her airway immediately swells up and you have to show her a picture of Russell Crowe to revive her.
She is terribly frightened of mayonnaise. It’s not that she just doesn’t like it, she’s actually afraid of it. “I can’t even listen to it!” she exclaims. She has been known to throw fits of rage because of mayonnaise.
She is an extremely hard worker and dedicated public servant. I have never known anyone else as dedicated and conscientious. Hard as I try, I cannot keep up with her.
She is The Queen Planner. She loves to plan—from parties to luncheons to committees to outings with friends. She knows how to make a plan and carry it out quickly and efficiently.
She is a hoot and a holler! We have had so many fun times together and laughed our heads off about countless things.
I French kissed her once. It was pretty nice. We were out with friends that night and some little sneaky person snapped this photo right in the midst of it all! Pumpkin Delight will die when she sees this photo of herself.
She is very thoughtful. She never misses a birthday or forgets to send a thank you note or fails to RSVP. Her gifts are meaningful and she’s always sure to ask you how things are going.
Once when we were out with some friends, she almost got hit by a bus. Just in the nick of time, someone pulled her back and WHOOSH went her hair in the wind of the passing bus. Then she promptly crossed the street and asked some guys if they had a blow dryer. True!
Her friends have decided that her theme song would be “The Flight of the Bumblebee.”
I love you, Pumpkin Delight!
PS-For a person who hates to have her picture taken, she just loves to take pictures! Check out her photographic talents by following this link:
Monday, April 23, 2007
This image doesn't seem to be photoshopped. Hmm.
I remember seeing this one a few years back. It's worth revisiting!
This photo could very well be real. Recently I saw a Chinese acrobats performance, and a girl did this very thing, right in front of my eyes---no smoke, no mirrors. Does this look like Julian McMahon? (Only my most careful and devoted readers will understand tha reference.)
Saturday, April 21, 2007
That being said….
The other day I went to a party at a friend’s house. There were some very creative people there; many of them enjoy photography quite a bit. One of them had a very clever idea: Take a picture of everyone’s shoes! So…he did. As he took a picture of my shoes I had a slightly embarrassed feeling, like my shoes weren’t as cool as the other kids’ shoes. It turns out, I was right. Check out this link: http://www.flickr.com/photos/antomic/460735228/
As I look back over the last few months, I’ve had several other hints that my shoes weren’t cool, with-it, or even completely useful. But I failed to take the hints. For instance, I went to an event with Amelia and she said that she was going to choose my shoes; I couldn’t wear those cheap K-Mart ones. Even when she chose my shoes she still wasn’t happy with the result. And Amelia is in no way a brand-name snob!
I didn’t even listen to the promptings that Mother Nature gave me when it rained and my feet became completely soaked inside my shoes because the soles had split wide open.
After discovering yet another pair of shoes with cracked soles, I decided, all on my own, that I would go get at least one new pair, if not two. Ironically, I saw my dear friend Kim and her mother at JCPenny, the place I planned to buy my shoes. I mentioned that was what I was doing, and she, of course, brought up the pictures of the shoes on the internet. That sent me into a frenzy.
Long story short: I ended up buying six new pairs of shoes in the same shopping trip, from the same store, spending much more that I would ever have dreamed of spending on shoes.
I went straight home and cleaned out my closet. This is the pile of shoes that I got rid of.
1. Teach your son that he can still get to heaven without being an active member of the scouting program. I grew up under the impression that if I did not participate in each and every scouting event, this would somehow jeopardize my heaven eligibility.
2. Teach your boy that he can still get a good job and be a fully functioning, contributing member of society even if he does not earn his Eagle Scout Award. Leaders continually tried to convince me otherwise throughout the duration of my scouting years. This rule, of course, does not apply if your son's goal is life is to work at the Scout Office.
3. Point out to your son that most people in the world are not scouts, and that many, many people don’t even know what the scouting program is. They still manage to have worthwhile, fulfilling lives anyway.
4. Reiterate to your son that GOD DID NOT INVENT THE SCOUTING PROGRAM, for God’s sake!
5. It may be worth mentioning to your child that the scouting program is not perfect, and that some of the practices of the scouting organization are questionable, prejudicial, and exclusive.
6. Clarify for your son that he may very likely make it through life without needing to know how to tie twenty different kinds of knots.
7. Instill in the mind of your boy that if there are certain scouting activities that he would rather not participate in, it is okay. Help him realize that the scouting program should be viewed as a cafeteria program, you can serve yourself what you like and leave what you do not like you should leave for someone else to select. It is NOT an all or nothing program, contrary to popular belief.
8. Teach your son that he can still be a loyal American without being a Boy Scout.
9. Make sure your young man understands that the scouting program is OPTIONAL. Don’t force him to do it.
10. Keep scouting fun for your child. Don’t allow other appointed or volunteer adults to dictate your son’s program. You can help him find things that he enjoys in scouts.
Or does he?
I'm happy to report that he has only asked for his binkies a few times, but didn't get upset about it. I knew it would be harder on us than him!
Leaving that one last bit of babyhood behind......
Friday, April 20, 2007
Note: I love and respect by Mexican mother with all of my heart. However, these remedies are just too good to keep to myself!
Thursday, April 19, 2007
Diego and I each have morning rituals that are surprisingly similar. Diego must have his strawberry milk (he calls it strawvery milk) within the first half hour of waking. If he doesn’t get it he becomes cranky, asking repeatedly for someone to give it to him. If he still doesn’t get it, he begins to yell at you.
I must have my coffee within the fist hour of waking. If I don’t, I become cranky, asking repeatedly for someone to give it to me. If I don’t get it, I begin to yell at you.
Once Diego has his strawvery milk in his hand he needs a few minutes alone to drink it and let it to its magic. He begins to feel human, even like he might think about smiling or saying something cheerful. A few more minutes go by and he’s ready to face the day.
Once I have my coffee in my hands I need a few minutes alone to drink it and let it do its magic. I begin to feel human, even like I might think about smiling or saying something cheerful. A few more minutes go by and I’m ready to face the day.
Diego does very well all morning until about 10:00, at which point he needs more strawvery milk. If he doesn’t get it, he feels cloudy, his head begins to hurt, and he can’t think straight. If he does get it, he can successfully finish his morning and make it til lunch.
I do very well all morning until about 10:00, at which point I need more coffee. If I don’t get it, I feel cloudy, my head begins to hurt, and I can’t think straight. If I do get it, I can successfully finish his morning and make it til lunch.
Diego even has dreams about strawvery milk. I’ve heard him talk about it in his sleep. While I don’t know exactly what goes on his dream, I can imagine.
I even have dreams about coffee. I dream that I end up having to go through the entire morning without it, and it is such a huge preoccupation in my mind that I can’t do my work, and I repeatedly try and fail to get a hold of a cup of coffee.
I’d say Diego has an addiction problem.
You know how there is a small handful of people out there, for whatever reason, with whom you cross paths on a regular basis? I’m not talking about people that you ordinarily see because you work with them, or because you live near them. I’m talking about people that maybe live in the same city as you but you don’t have anything else to really bring you together other than chance, coincidence, and circumstance.
One such person I see quite often is, Einnob. Einnob isn’t really her name, but I try to preserve peoples’ anonymity as much as possible. Einnob is one of my friend’s moms, that is how I met her, and once in a while I will see her in connection with that friend. But most of the time, we just happen to be at the same place at the same time. In a city of 175,000. It’s a little creepy.
I go to the market. There’s Einnob.
I go to the hair salon. There’s Einnob.
I go out to eat. There’s Einnob.
I’m walking through a parking lot. There’s Einnob.
I’m sitting at a red light and happen to glance over. There’s Einnob.
Einnob, are you stalking me?
Wednesday, April 18, 2007
Another prominent wall hanging in the hallway is this likeness of the Virgin of Guadalupe. Let's head outside for a moment. This is the courtyard between the living room and the dining room. Diego often likes to play with his tonka trucks in the gravel, and rabbits dig in the pots.
Continuing outside, we see the back yard. Notice the absence of grass. The whole thing is cement. After maintaining a 14,000 square foot lot of high-maintenance landscaping, this concrete is a welcome change!
Heading back inside, we catch the Toy Fox Terriers, Pumpkin (right) and Patches (left) playing a little game of Try to Tear the Other Dog's Throat Out. Notice the big black apparatus attached to their necks. These are very ineffective anti-bark shock collars. They zap the dogs when they bark, and then they keep on barking anyway!
This is one of my favorite paintings. Elsa painted this one when Pietro worked for Princess Cruises. This is the Island Princess.
Oh, look! Here is a common sight: Pietro busily tapping away at his keyboard, working on his latest book.
And now we move toward the back of the house to the kitchen. When you live with senior citizens, this is something you see often.
And, right next to the Metamucil, the (half empty) bottle of red wine.
And it wouldn't be a visit to the kitchen without seeing Elsa, culinary goddess, busily preparing the evening meal.
Moving upstairs...let's check to see if the teenager is home. No? Darn. Well, let's go into her room and check things out. Okay. This is Amelia's closet. Isn't it something any dad would be proud of?
Actually, this is what Amelia's dad is really proud of. Amelia's forward thinking and activism!
This violin is hanging in Amelia's room. It belonged to her great grandfather, Alvin Petersen. It was passed to my mom, then Katrine played it for a while when she was a girl. Then it ended up with Ray. He then passed it on to Amelia. (And the card pinned to the wall next to it? Instructions on how to survive an alien abduction. Hmmm. I've no idea.)
This is Diego's bookshelf. He LOVES to read stories! He will sit for a very long time and listen to story after story.
This is a photgraph on a plate of my parents' wedding day.
And nearby is a photograph of Giancarlo's parents on their wedding day.
Down the hall, at the end, is our bedroom. Here is the obligatory David statue.
And what? Who's this? Jason, sitting on his favorite chair, creating yet another irresistible blog post!