Monday, February 25, 2008

my new boyfriend

So, driving home from Stroller Strides this morning I was behind a pickup truck owned by my new boyfriend. He had a few bumper stickers on his truck that totally turned me on. The first: "I brake for animals. Then I skin them and eat them."

The second: "Guns kill people like spoons made Rosie O'Donnell fat."

I didn't catch all of the third one, since it was essentially a paragraph in small type under the banner of GUN CONTROL. But I did read far enough to see that it had something to do with a woman being brought into an alley, raped, and strangled with her panty hose. Really? You put that on your car?

I tried to get his number but he suddenly turned into a parking lot. Maybe he didn't like the look on my face or something? Oh, well. Someday.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

joy: a message from luciya

Bring joy to people whenever you can.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

eLLe - 10 months

Dear Nutter Butter,

You are ten months old today! Congratulations!

I don't know why I'm on a "Nuts" theme with your nicknames these days. For the first five or so months of your life it was "Monkey": Monk, Monkfish, Monkbone, Monkey Doodle Dandy. Then, I moved on to "Toots": Tooty, Tooter, Tootface, Toot Bottom. And now, your strange Mama is on "Nuts." Nut Face, Nutty, Nutbone, Nutty Buddy, Nut Belly, Nutter. Sometimes I'll combine fun snippets from all of the above, and call you things like Tootnut or Tooty Monkbottom or Nutty Monkfish. You can totally bring this post into therapy with you.

Ten months. Gee willakers. What a fun 10-month-old babe you are. You're everywhere! You're pulling, reaching, straining, climbing. You zip out of the room and are halfway up the stairs before I have a chance to turn around. You're "cruising" the furniture, pulling yourself up and sidestepping all the way around the coffee table or down the length of the couch.  You have stood without support for up to five seconds. Look out world - here comes the new Walker, Texas Ranger!

You still don't have teeth. Honestly, part of me was wondering if you aren't some kind of anomalous toothless ten-month-old toddler, but more and more mothers have been assuring me that their little ones didn't get teeth till 11 months or so. Granted, they got four teeth at once, or vampire incisors first, but they are now sporting sweet lil' baby smiles and appear to be completely normal. So, you know, I'm cool with that.

I am learning that teeth don't have to be present to eat, however. All of a sudden, you can chow down! We're feeding you bits of pasta, shredded cheese, pieces of toast, and chicken bones! Okay, maybe not that last bit, but you are officially joining us for meals in your new high chair. We finally had to spring for one of those because you've outgrown the Bumbo sitter. But I have to say I am really enjoying it. I can plop you in, sprinkle a few Cheerios on the tray and actually turn away for a minute to wash a dish or pick my teeth in the mirror. You like it, too! You're coming thisclose to clapping when you're excited to sit in your chair. Sure, it kind of looks like you're just flailing your arms haphazardly, and your little hands have yet to actually make contact with each other, but those of us "in the know" realize you're showing your delighted approval of things.

And to show your disproval, you squawk. And screech. And squeal. I admit it, I have referred to you as "annoying" on more than one occasion this month. I also admit I tried drinking caffeine this month. And I'm realizing that as long as we're nursing (which I still absolutely relish, though you're slowly -sniff- showing signs of not being that into it anymore), I should lay off, because that single shot of Starbucks goes straight to your itchy little larynx. 

You are curious and inquisitive. You follow sounds by craning your whole little body, and intrigue registers openly on your angelic face. You're very bright. You have begun flipping the pages of the books we read together, and your wee thumb gets in there to turn just one board book page at a time. "Book" is one of the words that I'm almost positive you recognize. I say "Where's your book?" and you crawl right over to the toy stack in whatever room we're in and pull one out. You also know (I'm pretty sure): Mila, eat, bottle, Daddy, bath, bubbles, Luciya, butterfly, ball, and clown. And you also know I love you very much.

I often think about how saying I love you doesn't even come close to the way I truly feel about you. You are the truest voice in my soul, the purest blend of every emotion ever conceived. And now that you've - incredibly - been out of my body longer than you were in it, I realize how truly blessed I am to have had this time to experience being alive.

I love you, Luciya!


Monday, February 18, 2008


I woke up last week to the sound of birdsong. One of those things you don't realize has been gone until you hear it again. What a welcome sound! It has been hovering between 40 and 50 degrees for over a week now, with blue skies and light breezes. I hear a lawn mower starting up next door. Is Spring here? Let's hope so!

We celebrated Valentine's Day by going to court. Well, that's how we started the day, anyway. We had to go defend ourselves (by pleading guilty) for Mila's Thanksgiving escape and our subsequent "dog at large" charge. We sat in the back of the courtroom and listened to a few of the cases (fascinating stuff! We heard from a sleazy-looking guy who had been caught with a syringe and a 17-year-old smoker who was told to make a poster for his high school about the dangers of cigarettes) and I tried to keep Luciya quiet-ish with a bottle. The judge suddenly asked whose baby that was and I apologized, thinking we were being too distracting. He was actually being Mr. Nice Judge and said, "It's Valentine's Day, and I know your family doesn't want to spend it in the courtroom." He bumped up John on the list and ended up dropping the license charge and reducing a potential $200+ fee to ten bucks plus court costs. We left fairly satisfied. I said "Thanks, Your Honor." (John and I both admitted, though, that it would have been interesting to be able to stay and hear some of the other cases before the jude; there were a couple shady looking teenage boy in front of us and I wanted to know just what schenanigans they'd been up to.)

We had Costco crab legs for dinner that night. I absolutely drowned mine in melted garlic butter and inhaled everything. Delish! 

John still hasn't found work, but a couple opportunities have presented themselves and it will be interesting to see where they go. He has an appointment with Fuddrucker's onWednesday. Keep your fingers crossed! 

Thursday, February 14, 2008


Ms. Smarty Pants was playing in her big-girl room when she shut the door and sat behind it. 


stuck! from shemmy on Vimeo.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

food is good for you: a message from luciya

Milk. It does a body good.

You should always try everything once.

You may not like it at first.

It's okay if some gets on your clothes.

Hmmm, what else.

Cheerios are a good snack.

I always make sure I didn't miss anything.

A little after-dinner apple juice always hits the spot.

Afterwards, don't forget to clean up!

Then you'll get to go outside and play.

Monday, February 4, 2008

chew low, sweet chariot

So, in my Complainer Connie mode the other day, when I was bitchin' and hemmin' and hawin' about how MISERABLE January was, I forgot to mention even more reasons why we've been feeling like Life has branded us with a gigantic "Kick Me" sign.

Oh, January was just AWFUL.

First of all, we made the mistake of traveling as a family to San Diego, where John's family live. Luciya *had* to spend time with her beautiful, giggleicious cousins and was forced to surprise her big sister and make her cry with happiness. AND she had to spend Quality Time with Grams and Grandpa Peter.

Brown-eyed girls.

We were forced to go to San Diego because I've had the misfortune of being totally inspired by this fitness program I've been attending called Stroller Strides, which has gotten me feeling better about my body than even before I was pregnant. My totally cute and perky franchisee asked if I'd like to be an instructor for the classes, and I suppose it sounded like the best idea ever, so we grudgingly found a way to make it down to sunny Southern California, where I spent two full days with disgustingly inspiring women, including one of my best friends from college, who also stayed with us at John's parents' amazing house. I know, I know... but the drama doesn't end there.

While in San Diego, we had to relax in the hot tub and celebrate little Devon's fifth birthday at a park. I got two days of fantastic workouts right down by the water, just a stone's throw from Sea World. *Sigh*.

Grams, Eryn, and Luciya in the park. In the SUN.

I know I mentioned how horrible it's been since John lost his job, but did I say how much it sucks that he and Luciya have been spending some terribly adorable father-daughter time together? And that I just despise the fact that I've actually gotten to take a few
naps?! And spend time painting?! Please.

In January we also had to shoulder the burden of a trip to the winter wonderland lake town of McCall, where John and I practically had the whole ski hill to ourselves on a fresh-powder, blue sky day. Tutu was there to play with Luciya, and John and I spent the first two nights ever away from Luciya because that mean old Tutu offered to watch her. Barf.

But I have to say the absolute WORST part about this past January were what are now infamously known as The Ciullo Days.

Mikey and Clancy Ciullo (sorry, guys, I just can't call you Michael and Nancy. It just feels weird in my mouth) are our best friends from Maui. This sibling duo has been our main support system for years. Mikey, John's not-so-secret lover, will be the best man in our September wedding. He and John have known each other for 13 years or something like that. Clancy will be a bridesmaid. They each moved from the island of Maui within a week of each other at the beginning of the year, and they each made a week-long trip to frostbitten Boise to see the babe (whom they haven't seen since she was eight weeks old!) and catch up. Needless to say, we were completely miserable the whole time they were here.

This is Uncle Mikey.

Obviously, he had an awful time in Boise and didn't bond with Luciya at all. He must have been feigning the laughs we had bowling, and biting his tongue as Luciya hugged and crawled all over him. I think he was probably very unhappy to spend time with us, not to mention that fact that we was forced to go snowboarding at Bogus Basin no less than three times. Oh, and this probably ruffled his tailfeathers as much as it did mine:

How to have fun in Boise in the Winter.

No wonder we haven't heard from him since he moved to the Virgin Islands to work on a sailboat.

This is his sister, Aunty Clancy.

Aunty Clancy is ridiculously funny and terribly sweet. She came to Idaho toting her positivity and sunshine (too bad we couldn't return the favor). You can imagine how torturous that was. She and Luciya were crazy about each other. And she had the audacity to have a good time mostly spent at the house, since we're all watching our budgets.

Ugh, the Ciullos. No, we
don't miss you guys, as a matter of fact. We don't long for your tangible friendship every day. So there.

Please, keep your good thoughts coming to us. As you can see, times are rough. We're struggling, but we're managing to struggle with painted-on smiles.

February, get ready.

Sunday, February 3, 2008

here comes trouble!

step in time from shemmy on Vimeo.

... and we wonder why we don't have friends

Actual conversation while watching TV last night:

Ton Ton: "Honey, have you seen my watch?"

Shemmy: "Oh, it's on top of your head, Hon."

Ton Ton: "What?!"

Shemmy: "Yeah. Just put your hand up there, you'll feel it."

Ton Ton: "That's crazy."

Shemmy: "I know!"

About 30 minutes later...

Shemmy: "Honey, have you seen the remote control?"

Ton Ton: "Oh hey, it's on your shoulder."

Shemmy: "What?!"

Ton Ton: "Yeah, it's right there... up on your right shoulder."

Shemmy: "That's crazy!"

Ton Ton: "I know!"

Saturday, February 2, 2008

coney baloney the sleepwalking wallbanger

We carried Mila downstairs after her little surgery and blocked the stairs so she cold walk up and down them. She was zoned out from being under and fell asleep right away on her little bed.

At 2:30 Luciya stirred to cry and only went about 20 minutes. We went back to sleep and then I woke up about five minutes later to a loud SMACK! And then another BANG! I woke up John (yeah, kind of a deep sleeper). I told him I thought Mila was walking around. We sat up in bed and sure enough, old Zoney Conehead jumps up onto the bed with the wide sides of her plastic cone slicing the covers as she tried to figure out what in Sam Hill was going on.

John picked her up and placed her on the floor (she's not supposed to be jumping up or down, or on the stairs, etc.) and led her back into the living room. On the way there was a CRACK! (wall) and a SCRAPE (floor) and a BOOM! (door jamb). Poor little thing. She's just so confused.

Help meeeeee........