Saturday, October 31, 2009

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

All By Herself?!

Guess who can put her shoes on all by herself?

Baby Steps...

*Cue the "Jaws" theme...

Dear Darling Cannibal Child of Mine,

I never thought I'd be having this talk, so you'll have to excuse me if I don't seem to have a firm grip on the words I'm about to say to you. You aren't in trouble. Yet.

You see, there are some things that aren't meant to be taken literally. You couldn't possibly know this yet, but when you hear phrases such as "those pudgy baby cheeks look like a tasty snack!" or the classic line from Where the Wild Things Are, "I'll eat you up I love you so," aren't meant to imply that humans are part of a complete breakfast.

This is just the first of many social lessons we'll teach you. Trust me, I don't mean to cramp your style or repress your personality. By all means, be yourself!... but keep in mind that we're not living in Germany where cannibalism is specifically not illegal.

Also keep in mind that this isn't just a social lesson. In years past, regular old boring diseases were worry enough to reasonably justify the practices of hand-washing and covering ones mouth when one coughs. Unfortunately for you, being born into an amazingly modern generation, you will see insane technological advancement that your Grandma would call "Harry Potter magic" but it will be tempered with the evolution of disease. H1N1 is scary now, but who knows what kind of black-magic plagues might be widespread when you yourself have a 19-month old daughter. Taking a cautionary approach is never a bad idea. Lunging into people's faces to lick them isn't one such approach.

I hate to break it to ya, kiddo.

If not to spare yourself from the social awkwardness of being a 50-year woman who is notorious for her kinder-essen diet (baby gobbling), please restrain yourself if for the germs alone.

It might be a difficult adjustment at first; you'll have times when the desire to slobber all over Daddy's scratchy cheek or bite Mommy's knee will overwhelm you. We sympathize and will work with you to make your normal dinner more appetizing now that your strong preferences have been made clear. We're just thankful not to have breastfed you.

We love you. We also love our elbows. We'd prefer not to choose between the two, is all.

Mommy & Daddy

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Mei Ling

At the end of the month, guess who's coming back home? Mei Ling! My black lab! My partner in crime! One of my best friends! I would say "YAY" if it were a joyful occasion. But it isn't. Mei Ling moved out because she got too rough with Halle and keeping her seperated (i.e. confined to the only other room Brad allows her to go) was getting to be too much. Compound that with her seperation anxiety, frequent barking and her reckless enthusiasm... it was a blessing that she's been able to stay with someone who cherishes her thoroughly.

Now that she's coming back, I'm mulling over all of my options. She's seven years old. And a lab. That's not great with kids. She has a snowball's chance in hell to get adopted. Take a look at Craigslist's pet section for a single day HERE. There are exactly 60 listings for lab mixes that need homes, just from the last 30 days. And a lot of those are puppies.

I considered no-kill shelters, but I didn't get any positive responses from them. One didn't even bother to reply to my email.

I considered muzzles, shock collars, and spray collars. A muzzle can only stay on a dog for up to two hours for safety reasons; if the dog is under stress (which is kinda why you might need a muzzle in the first place...) the time is even shorter. And the training collars - they're effective on young dogs and again, can only be worn for short periods of time during constant supervision. I don't even like the idea of a shock collar. I also think that she barks because of seperation anxiety, and getting a training collar would only solve the symptoms of an underlying problem that might just manifest in some other way. Mei Ling and I have irrational phobia in common and I don't want her to be scared.

I'm considering making an investment in a dog whisperer, or a dog-owner whisperer. I've gotten in touch with two already, but to be honest with you I can't decipher half of what they say on their messages! They're both foreign and I'm phone-deaf as it is. If I'm going to pay for a miracle to happen, I want to be able to absorb all of it.

This is a highly emotional issue that Brad and I can't seem to agree on. We both agree that Halle comes first; that's not even part of the debate. This is my dog. The puppy I adopted in Chapel Hill. The puppy that got free from the backyard and sat on the front porch for hours, patiently waiting for me to come home. The puppy that didn't used to need a leash, that grew into a dog so afraid of thunderstorms she tried to climb on top of a dryer. My nuzzling, loving, hairy, jealous mess. One of my best friends.

If *anyone* has any ideas for me, leads on a trainer, or is willing to foster her for a time, please get in touch. This is tearing me apart.

"I think dogs are the most amazing creatures; they give unconditional love. For me they are the role model for being alive." - Gilda Radner

"My goal in life is to be as good of a person my dog already thinks I am." - Author Unknown

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

The Toddlerhood of a Brazen Tempest.

Isn't toddlerhood lovely? This picture perfectly summarizes Halle. She's a blood-thirsty ballerina and make no mistake, you'll hear her roar and you will like it!

Cheeky Halle breaking the no-standing-on-the-couch rule, wondering what will happen if she incautiously disobeys... Cause casually standing on the couch is fun and like, totally normal.

You wild, brazen thing have the audacity to smile at me as you refuse to sit? WELL!

Okay, no, haha, different incident. Halle got her bell rung when she fell playing on the sidewalk. The bump on her forehead is so big that I'm really impressed she didn't even cry. That's just her. It's as if it doesn't occur to her to pity herself.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

SUPER silly. SUPER short.

Just recorded this video of Halle several hours ago. She thought she was posing for a picture, but little did she know she was being video taped!

It's only 9 seconds long. The quality is really poor because I recorded it with my cell phone. *

*Wanna hear some crap? If I had notified Sony of my handicam woes just TWO DAYS earlier it would've been covered by warranty. It's positively despicable that manufacturers have such poor faith in their products that they can only guarantee it will function for one year. Most light bulbs are guaranteed to last longer than my freakin' camcorder and that is a SHAME. So yeah, I'm putting off the $120+ bill to have Sony take a *look* at my camcorder and then maybe fix it for goodness knows how much more.


I'm starting to get excited about Halloween the same as when I was a kid. You know how they say that being a parent gives you a second childhood? It's SO true! I've missed these simple things like costumes, swings at the playground, spinning around and getting dizzy, singing "Popcorn Popping" with all the signs... having a kid really forces you to appreciate mundane things like an airplane whooshing loudly by, or hugs, or even the swirly background effects of Windows Media Player. Despite her inability to express herself with words, she does a pretty amazing job at expressing her THRILL with all things new or familiar.

With a simple exclamation of "OH!"

I agree, kiddo, the moon is fantastic!

Am I ADD-ing here? Sorry. Halloween. Right.

Let me give you some of the excitement of our Halloween. I found this hilarious idea today:

"I grew up in a college town, and one Halloween our doorbell rang and we opened the door expecting to see trickortreater—but what was in front of our open door—was another door! Like, a full-on wooden door, that had a sign that said “Please knock.” So we did, and the door swung open to reveal a bunch of college dudes dressed as really old grandmothers, curlers in their hair, etc, who proceeded to coo over our “costumes” and tell us we were “such cute trick or treaters!” One even pinched my cheek. Then THEY gave US candy, closed their door, picked it up and walked to the next house."

Tomorrow: More pictures & some pumpkin carving ideas! Yay!

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Boho Baby

My boss gave Halle some hand-me-downs, including these cripplingly cute tights. She's going to be wearing these a LOT this winter.

Hari Krishna... Hari Hari Krishna? No, they aren't Nepalese prayer beads, they're Carolina blue footballs.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Sick and sicker.

This is all Brad's fault. Last week he was a zombie with a sore throat and a runny nose. This weekend, as he started feeling like himself again, Halle got a fever and a runny nose. I've been feeling all achy since Saturday night and this morning I woke up with a sore throat.

It's incredibly damning when your child is sick. I pretty much ceded to the idea of getting sick when Halle obviously was. I mean, I'm not going to NOT be affectionate to my pitifully sick baby. She was drooling like a bloodhound in the Outback Steakhouse kitchen and I have this thing about spoiling her when she's sick...

... I even brought one of her Christmas presents out of hiding...

I would write more but I can't hardly think straight today. Seriously, I forgot how to use my key at work today. This was supposed to be a post about the H1N1 vaccination, but that will have to wait.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Cute Attack!

It warms the heart!

The lion and the lamb (the lion looks EXACTLY like Olive! Wow!)

More adorableness at this website and this website.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Tuesday, October 6, 2009


Aren't you so glad you checked the blog today?

P.S. These were taken, shakily, by my photo camera which can't zoom. There was an incident... with a tomato... involving my poor, beloved Sony Handycam Camcorder. It's not too bad off and I'm confident that it can be fixed. Does anyone have a recommendation for a camcorder repair service? I'll call Ritz camera tonight, but of course if you know a better place please send it along.

Pictures! As promised!

A cozy moment for Telephone Rock!

When you tell her to smile for the camera, this is what you get.

Her favorite blue swing at the park matches her hat perfectly!

Smiling in park anticipation.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Interesting Headline! + Stuff

"Most Babies Born This Century Should Live to 100". If you'd like to read the entire article from AOL News, click HERE. At first I thought, well who really wants to live to be 100? Maybe some people, but I certainly wouldn't want to be kept alive for an extra thirty years after my livelihood has gotten on a "bridge to nowhere", hehe.

But NO! Scientists think they're on to something that slows the aging process: "While illnesses affecting the elderly like heart disease, cancer and diabetes are rising, advances in medical treatment are also making it possible for them to remain active for longer. The obesity epidemic, however, may complicate matters. Extra weight makes people more susceptible to diseases and may increase their risk of dying."

It's pretty amazing to think of Halle as a sweet little old lady in her hundreds, still smiling and cackling and shimmying her own Halle boogie. She surely won't be affected by the obesity epidemic - not as long as we have to put on a circus, trick, bribe, and beg her to eat!

A perfect metaphor for a parent's love.

Suri Cruise is the youngest fashion plate that has proven herself more woman than I. She's wearing heels for crying out loud. I don't have the kind of relationship with gravity that would allow me to wear heels, and I'd honestly rather walk barefoot than go click-clack! click-clack! everywhere, but I can't help but be a LITTLE TINY BIT ENVIOUS of her poise.

Lots of pictures (of Halle) coming tomorrow, promise!