Showing posts from July, 2011

Fun Stuff

The kid and I spent a lot of time together this weekend. I worked at a pet expo until 3:00 on Saturday (her dad brought her by to visit me there as well) and after that, we hit the road.  It was just me and her.  I had this theory that if I left P home alone long enough, he would use this free time to stain the deck. As it turns out, if you leave him home alone long enough, he hops in the car and takes himself to a movie (Captain America).

First we went out to dinner. She'd had a fever Friday night and although Tylenol had taken care of it by morning, she still seemed a little off on Saturday. And by "off" I mean "compliant." I wasn't sure whether to worry about her or to sing hallelujah in the streets. After dinner, we stopped at a park.  A storm had just blown through, so the park was empty. I don't mean to brag here, but I found three (wet, sandy) dollars next to the swing set. I'm currently looking into some investment strategies. I'm worrie…

It's crazy up in hair

As my daughter gets older, I am definitely noticing her need to exert her independence and express her individuality a little more each day. Yesterday she had a playdate at her friend's house. This friend lives three blocks away. I decided to let her ride her bike. I acted like it was no big deal, but in my head, I was mentally calculating all of the things that could happen to her in three blocks. I strapped her helmet onto her noggin, gave her a little push, and then stood in the yard like a lawn ornament until I saw her pull into her friend's driveway. I am planning to do this for all such outings, until she is married.

Try as I might to stop the clock, she persists in growing up. Her wardrobe is one of the most obvious signs. She used to wear whatever I put on her, but now she wants a say in it. So, I've been involving her more in my buying decisions so that we're not stuck with clothing she refuses to wear.  A few pairs of shoes have been rejected out of hand, an…

Little Miss Popular

Before my daughter was born, her birthmom warned me that I would be reduced to the status of a small rodent from the date the baby arrived on the planet until . . . well, forever. And it was true. Everyone I know was smitten with the little cherub - they still are, in fact. I'm pretty sure most of them like her better than they like me, not that I blame them. I mean, I know every mom thinks her child is particularly spectacular, but mine is irrepressibly cute and outgoing and has a giggle that leaves you no choice but to start giggling yourself. You see, that's one benefit of adopting - I can be pretty obnoxious as far as bragging about her and it's not as if I'm paying some sort of compliment to myself at the same time. It's not like I'm pointing at my child and saying, "Did you see what I MADE?! My DNA is extraordinary, is it not?"

My father called me last week to make sure we'd gotten home safely from our visit to the east coast. As part of hi…

#600 - that a lotta bons mots, people

Here 'tis, my 600th post. That reminds me - I got an email from Once Upon a Child advertising a clearance sale on July 23th. And a client told me she'd get me feedback on a website design by June 31st. I'm the only one who finds this stuff amusing? Ah, okay.

On this auspicious occasion, I'd like to take this opportunity to thank my small but ardent pool of readers. As you may have noticed, fame and fortune continue to elude me, so I'll keep plugging away at this writing thing. I sometimes wonder if, someday in the future, my daughter will read my blog and declare it to be blatant child abuse.  I've carefully chronicled the last four and half years of her life in intricate detail, and it's true that she did crap her pants a lot in the early entries.

We're getting ready to head to a wedding and so, alas, I must keep this short. As I was typing this entry, I learned of the death of Amy Winehouse. I guess I knew it was coming, just as we all did. A few wee…

Remembering Brody-O

Years ago (11ish), I got involved in rescue as a volunteer. At that time, there were just two of us (Vicki, the rescue's founder, and me), taking in homeless Boxers and finding new homes for them. Today, the organization has expanded considerably and has taken in well over 700 dogs to date. Over the years, I've learned a lot about canine behavior, fundraising, and various medical conditions ranging from entropion to degenerative myelopathy to megaesophagus. I've made some wonderful friends along the way and I've met a few nutjobs, too.
Back in the early days with the rescue, I used to write articles for a site called Themestream. The way Themestream worked was that people could post their writing and if a site visitor clicked on your article, you'd make a few cents. I was actually faring pretty well on the site and had the intention of donating the money to the rescue. I certainly would have done so, except that Themestream shut itself down and left like a thief in…

Little Runaway

The kid had a rough day at daycare on Thursday. Her age group went on a field trip to a planetarium, boarding two small buses to get there. Apparently my child thought it would be a good use of her time to smack one of her fellow passengers on the way back to Kindercare. A's regular teacher happened to be on the bus behind the one A was on. Miss Heather saw her lean all the way across the aisle to clock this other kid (more than once, apparently). A caused enough of a ruckus that the bus driver would have stopped the bus had they not been on the highway.

So, needless to say, this episode was recounted to me when I picked up my daughter after work. On the way home, I advised her that her punishment would be no TV that evening. She began to wail. "Not even a mooooooovie?"  Ah no, you may not watch anything that might appear on a screen of any type.  I told her she was welcome to hang out in her room and read.

She cried all the way home. "I don't like this punishm…

Yeah, it was worth it

I weighed myself Monday morning. Yowza. Apparently, my body did indeed notice my vacation-related indulgences and expanded accordingly.  Damn!

Some of the stuff I enjoyed:
Utz Barbecue Potato Chips (I can't get these locally and that's probably for the best)A chocolate chip cookie from Larry's Cookies. It was approximately the same diameter as a personal pan pizza. I just noticed that these cookies can be ordered online. Perhaps I should forget that I know that. Pizza from Bugsy's Pizza. In fact, I ate pizza twice that day. I say that with no pride in my voice, believe me.I have never been a big fan of guacamole, but I think I'm changing my mind. My niece made some fresh guacamole and I ate a shameful amount of it.A fourteen-dollar glass of wine at this place. Well, two glasses, if you want to get all technical about it. I don't think the wine made me fat - I just mentioned it in case you might be impressed by this degree of fanciness. (Many thanks to my fancy …

Destination: Hell

We thoroughly enjoyed our vacation, so we thought we'd ease back into reality by staying in the worst hotel the world has ever known. Now, I should preface my tale by stating that I've always had really good luck with Priceline. I've used the "name your own price" feature at least 25 times and have always gotten downright decent hotel rooms.  Most of the hotels have had a nice breakfast (not just the "continental" breakfast where they throw a stale muffin at you when you check out) and most have also had a pool.  So, I had no hesitation about using Priceline to book a hotel room for our trip back home. It's a 16-hour drive so we wanted to break it up at roughly the halfway mark.  I got online and bid on a room like I always do. My bid was accepted by an Extended Stay America hotel. I checked out the hotel's website. No pool, but everything else seemed okay at first blush. No worries.  Until we checked in.

Now, I don't think I am that partic…

Party's almost over

We're headed home tomorrow. We drove straight through to DC on the way out, but will stop at a hotel on the way back. My van has been fixed, so at least I won't have that to worry about when I return. Shall I tell you what was wrong with it? Well, to provide a bit of background . . . for the past nine months or so, every time I get an oil change, the technician helpfully informs me that my battery is testing low. Each time, I pass this information along to my other half. He did not want me to have the dealership install a new battery, because he can do it himself more cheaply. He told me he would take care of it. As our road trip departure closed in, I asked about it multiple times.  I received a lot of eyerolls in exchange for my helpful reminders.

Anyway, guess what's wrong with my van. Go on, take a wild guess.  Yes, dead battery. The dealership called me today. The battery was so thoroughly drained that it could not even accept a charge. So, between the tow, the new ba…

How I've missed you, cola Slurpee

We don't have 7-11's where I live, so I always get a cola Slurpee when I'm back in the DC area. I bought one today and indeed, it hit the spot. When I'm back "home" in Northern Virginia, I try to satisfy any cravings for things I've missed but alas, some do not live up to my memories. I ate lunch at Jerry's Subs & Pizza today (which we don't have out west) and it was so-so. Last time I was in town, I got a cookie from Larry's Cookies because I always loved them so, but it was not as fabulous as my memory led me to believe it would be. I may grab one tomorrow when we're downtown for the Smithsonian Folklife Festival, juuuuuuuust to be sure they're not as good as I thought they were. I am happy to report that Utz barbecue potato chips still meet my expectations, so there's that.

We're continuing to enjoy our vacation. A is being a bit of a pill and we're not sure what to do about it. We're not all that motivated to di…


You may be thinking to yourself, "Self, why has Claudia not updated her blog? Is it a lack of commitment? A general sense of malaise, perhaps?" Well, we're on vacation. It took me five days to pack for a nine-day trip. Plus, I had to drop the three dogs off at three different locations before we left (don't ask - the doggie diaspora is a long story). The goal was to leave at 6 a.m. on Friday and drive straight through to my sister's house in Virginia. We were all packed up and ready to go, but when I attempted to start the car, I heard an ominous clicking noise. You would not think that a clickety-clickety noise could be ominous and foreboding, but trust me, it was. We didn't really think it was the battery, but we tried jumping it just in case. No dice. So, we went with Plan B, which was to unload everything and toss it into P's car, which is a Taurus. Less roomy than the van, of course, but we had no choice.

We drove all day and arrived at my sister'…