Sunday, June 12, 2011

New Developments and a Dog Bite

Harper has taken this huge leap in the past week and is doing all sorts of new things. Her repertoire now includes:

1. Saying "uh-oh" just after she has pooped.
2. Pointing to your nose if you ask her where it is (she will do mouth, too, about 50% of the time). 
3. Making the "milk" sign when she is hungry.
4. Waving bye-bye.
5. Maybe or maybe not saying "daddy," depending on who you ask.

Also, if you leave your child unattended around your dog someone will inevitably get bitten. See for yourself:

No crawling yet but she’s so close she can taste it. She is starting to get really frustrated army-crawling and rolling all over the place. I think it'll be in the next few days, for sure.

We’ll keep you posted!

Friday, June 10, 2011

Almost Perfect

My Husband is a liar. At least, I think that’s what it’s called. What is the word for when someone honestly believes they are telling the truth but they don’t have all the facts? That is what he is: unintentionally devoid of facts. An U.D.O.F.’er.
Let me explain. My husband has, on more than one occasion, been moved to tell me, with total sincerity, that I am so beautiful I, “Don’t even need to wear makeup.” The problem? He has never said this while I was actually makeup-less.
In fairness, he hasn’t said it while I was wearing a lot of makeup, either. It’s not like I walk around looking like a pageant contestant.  This leads me to believe he just thinks I have naturally dark, thick lashes, rosy cheeks and flawless, porcelain skin. Oh that that were true!
 This is what I like to look like when I do light housework.
What’s worse; when I really am without makeup, he becomes concerned and says things like, “Are you coming down with something?” or, “Did you get enough sleep last night. You look tired.” I haven’t the heart (or stomach) to tell him that’s how I look naturally.
Brad can be a little clueless about these things. One time I was watching Top Chef when Brad entered the room. After a couple of minutes of scrutiny he said, “She’s kind of pretty.”
Me: “Who? Padma Lakshmi? The Supermodel? Yeah, she’s 'kind of' pretty.”
Brad: “She’s a Supermodel?”
He did the same thing on Project Runway a few months later. I firmly instructed him not to comment about other women’s looks again. I mean, that’s the standard of beauty I have to meet? Really? There isn’t anything between Heidi Klum and Quasimodo?
Brad: “She’s not bad looking.”
The truth is, I wish I looked like that. Well, maybe not Heidi Klum. I love my brunetteness too much. Plus I haven’t got any of what Victoria is (or is not) keeping Secret.
I have a love/hate relationship with this woman.       
But I wish I were that girl. You know, the one who rolls out of bed, runs her fingers through her perfect, “dirty” hair before tying it into a chic, tussled knot, throws on a pair of eco-friendly espadrilles and a French peasant blouse and rides her charming, vintage bicycle to the Farmer’s Market before meeting a friend for a cafe’ ole’ and a baguette. I want to have an herb garden and fresh cut tulips in my super organized, casually elegant home every day. I was to enroll my children in summer art classes. I want to look good in hats. I want to “holiday” in Florence. I want everything I touch to be beautiful and pleasant and effortless. And then I wake up.
The thing is, that girl never rinses out soiled diapers. She never has to make dinner with only tortillas, frozen peas and raspberry preserves because she hasn't had time to go grocery shopping. She never gets split ends. She never has to plunge her kitchen sink because the disposal has stopped working… again
This is not reality. Mine, anyway.
And Brad didn’t marry that girl, either. He married me, split-ends and all. It was a good decision. I am a lot more fun than that girl. And we made a fantastically cute, probably genius baby. 
But I’d still like an herb garden.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Date Night

Well… we finally did it. Brad and I left the house of our own accord without Harper in tow. Why, do you ask? We had a DATE. That’s right, a planned evening of adult-related activities. No spit-up. No diapers. Just the two of us.
I have to back up here. This almost happened once before, on our anniversary. Actually, it technically did happen once before. We hired our wonderful neighbor, Karen, to watch Harper after we put her to bed for the night and then we left. But that evening was a comedy of errors that culminated with us driving around the greater Tampa area aimlessly. Almost certainly one day I’ll look back on it and laugh. But not yet.
Anyway, the disappointment of our lost anniversary inspired me to organize another evening for us. I started to hatch a plan to surprise Brad and called Karen to see if she’d be available to sit with Harper. She said she would be… in mid-July. Clearly that was not going to work. That was when I started calling everyone I knew to come up with a babysitter. As it turns out, finding a qualified, trustworthy sitter on short notice in these parts is about as easy as tracking down a live Skunk Ape (that’s a Florida reference for those of you who don’t get it).
Beware the Skunk Ape! They are non-aggressive but very, very smelly.
Eventually my neighbor gave me the number to her friend’s, friend’s nanny who was available. I was assured that she had been working for the same family for the past three years (so I could track her down if she stole my identity or ordered a bunch of Movies on Demand). I booked her immediately.
I was lucky. I knew her employers had run an extensive background check on her (they work in the DA’s office)and was reassured when she asked me to leave a copy of Harper’s full medical records in case there was an emergency (in retrospect, this may also have been interpreted to mean she was planning to abduct Harper, but all’s well that ends well). But I have glimpsed the dark side. I can now see why parents may be willing to settle for a less qualified sitter. A couple of more hours and I probably would have settled for Squeaky Fromme (“Well, Ms. Fromme, it says here you worked with children at a place called Spahn Ranch Daycare? And your former superior, Mr. Manson, had EXCELLENT things to say about you!”). A slippery slope calls for desperate measures, or something like that.
You successfully completed 7th grade? Great! What time can you be here?
The evening was a success. The house was intact and the baby was asleep when we got home. We returned to find the sitter doing just that; sitting. She was too afraid to move, actually. It seems that only ten minutes after we left one of our cats had scurried under the recliner where she was seated and she was terrified the chair would inadvertently crush him if it collapsed as she stood up. So she lay there, frozen and in full recline, for the entire three hours we were gone. I would feel bad but not for the fact that she was paid $45 to sit in a chair for three hours. She never even saw Harper (who slept through the whole thing). This whole babysitting gig is sounding more like a racket to me. Next time we’ll probably just rock Harper to sleep, put her in her crib, leave the baby monitor on and hit the road.
Kidding! Kidding!    
P.S. Did you notice that this entry, a post entitled “Date Night,” reported no actual details about the date its self? How odd.      

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Lazy Summer

When Brad first confirmed we would be relocating to Florida I believe the first words out of my mouth were something like, "Oh crap. I'm going to have to get used to weather again."

Since our move I have described the summers here as "oppressive" on more than one occasion. And I have likened the humidity to "breathing soup." Those of you who have spent any length of time in the deep south other than in an air-conditioned airport know of what I speak. I have noticed that we, too, are spending a lot of time indoors these days.      

The truth is, I am still a California girl, and I can’t stay indoors too long without starting to go a little stir crazy. On days like that I pack Harper up and we head outside, despite the weather.

One of the benefits of living in subtropical conditions is that you have to slow down a little (Truly. I literally cannot move as quickly in this weather without risking death by heatstroke.). Humans are amazingly adaptable creatures. Now I hardly bat an eye when the temperature outside is 85 with humidity of 98% (although you wouldn't know it to hear me complain). We just look for a big tree to sit under and enjoy nature a little. Here are some photos of us enjoying just such an outing.

I wish I’d gotten a picture of the robot diaper she was wearing that morning. It is so freakin’ cute. I’ll have to get one before she outgrows it.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011


I have been so nostalgic about San Luis Obispo lately that I have been making a virtual photo album so I can take a virtual vacation anytime I want. Places I miss the most include:

Farmers Market...

... every Thursday night on Higuera Street.

The creek behind the Mission.

The now defunct Cal Poly Organic Farm, where Brad and I were lucky enough to work. We met our dearest friends here (some of whom are pictured above).

Boo Boo's. Best. Record Store. Ever. And the best roof for people watching. 

The Palm. Indie films projected by solar power and REAL popcorn. 

Linnaea's! If I had a dime for every time I parked my bike here...

... I still would not have near enough to cover what I spend at this counter.

Brad and I had our first "date" at the table in the back...

... and our wedding reception was held in the garden exactly
3 years and 3 days later. 

Spooner's Cove at Montana de Oro, where we were married. Our ceremony was pretty much exactly where the person in the photo is standing.

The Sanitarium, the bed/breakfast and art studio where we honeymooned.
There was a HUGE bathtub in every room. Plus, the balcony outside our room practically overlooked Brad's apartment.