Monthly Archives: September 2008

No Time to Blog

A quick update since I have so little time these days …

1. Book due Oct 15, just a little over two weeks from now. I’m a little behind, and don’t anticipate this will be my final draft, but I’m very close to being on schedule and do plan to finish this draft on time. After that, I think it will need a little more work before I send it out. Haven’t come up with a plan for the next step yet.

2. Went to Sweet Dreams this weekend and it was SO NICE not to do any work for a change! (Although there is still more work to do). We even hired the cleaning service that the management company uses, so we didn’t have to spend Sunday afternoon scrubbing bathrooms and washing sheets. The weather has been amazing this entire month and we finally went on a hike with Shea yesterday. It was SO SO good to get out and get some fresh air. I’m really burned out on working all the time.

3. Upon returning from the river, I left my keys in the glove box and Martin took his to work, so I was trapped at home today. I had planned to run a couple errands and then take Shea to get a nine-month picture taken (Mondays are my only days completely free to do things like that), but instead we read books and played at home and then went for a walk and played for a long time on the swings and in the sandbox at the park and it was REALLY FUN. Staying at home all day with Shea was way more relaxing than my usual schedule of taking care of him AND running errands AND going to the city to write AND tutoring at night, etc. etc. Way more fun, too!

4. Need to do my taxes in the next week. Almost done adding receipts, but haven’t started the taxes yet. That’s my goal for this weekend. They’re due the same day as my book.

5. There’s so much going on this month with Litquake starting next weekend. The Grotto has two Litquake events – one Oct. 4 and one Oct. 11, and I plan to attend both, although I won’t be reading this year because I completely missed the e-mail asking for readers. Oh well. It’s been a crazy year.

6. Watching Heroes and anxious to watch Dexter. Still have a few episodes of Galactica, too, but haven’t had time to watch much TV lately (besides Heroes and the debates last week.) OH my OH my I just realized today is Monday again and Heroes is on in 21 minutes! I have to go and eat dinner quickly so I can watch it. I’m so lost because I didn’t watch the recap of the previous season. I love that Marlo from The Wire is on it this season, though. And I like speedster girl, too.

7. Speaking of the debates. My reaction: Zzzzzzzz … Hilary would have done so much better against McCain. I like Obama a lot, but he’s a weak debater. Zzzzzz …



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Love this!

I love the movie Juno, especially the song at the end, so this video made me happy:

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Shea is nine months today!

Shea is nine months today! This picture is a couple days old, but he hasn’t changed since then. I did remove the baby bathtub, though, and replace it with a non-slip mat, because he was doing this—standing up in the tub. Now his favorite thing is to try to remove the plug from the drain while taking a bath, and signing “touche non”—”touch no”—doesn’t mean a thing to him yet.

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Poetry of the Blue Screen of Death

I was looking up blue screen on to see what the difference between a blue screen and a green screen was, and came across these blue screen of death haikus. Pretty funny.

Blue Screen
of Death n. [common] This term is closely related to the older Black Screen of Death but much more common (many non-hackers have picked it up). Due to the extreme fragility and bugginess of Microsoft Windows (3.1/95/NT versions), misbehaving applications can crash the OS. The Blue Screen of Death, sometimes decorated with hex error codes, is what you get when this happens. (Commonly abbreviated BSOD.) This event is sufficiently common to have inspired the following haiku from Alan Tuplin:

Your system which soared So freely on gliding wings now hangs, frozen and blue

The following entry from the Salon Haiku Contest (, seems to have predated popular use of the term (and may indeed have inspired it):

Windows NT crashed. I am the Blue Screen of Death No one hears your screams.

By the way, I learned that there is no difference between a blue screen and a green screen, and the reason those colors are used is that they are least likely to match someone’s skin tone, avoiding overlaying their face with the background images.


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The End

Oh, man. The end of my book is just crap. It needs so, so much work and I am so tired since I got up at 6:30 this morning with Shea. Work? Sleep? Work? Sleep? I think I’ll take a nap, then get back to work.

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Shea update: He’s crawling like a crab now – only forward, not sideways. We spent the morning babyproofing together – he crawling around the kitchen showing me what he could get into and me chasing behind him, grabbing bottles off shelves before he could pull them down onto his head. He’s eating real chicken and real egg yolk. He’s trying hard to pull himself up to standing on everything, including me. He has two big new top teeth coming in and he’s MISERABLE right now.

House update: Sweet Dreams in on the market! We’re still waiting for more photos (of the hot tub, pool table, art on the walls, etc), but here it is!

Writing update: I’m frighteningly close to the end of my third draft of my book. This weekend I’m working on the near-final chapters, of which there are about six, then I’ll have just two more to go. However, I won’t be completely done yet. I still have a couple new chapters to write, a few scenes to add to existing chapters and then I’ll have to go back through the whole thing and see what’s missing. I’m on track, though, for finishing this draft by Oct. 15. I just don’t know yet if the book will be done at that point or if it will need more work. My guess is it will need SOME more work, but hopefully not another entire draft. Hopefully stuff I can do within a month. It’s all I can think about right now. I’m so close I can taste it!

Other life: We finally played some games after a three-month dry period! We stayed up until 2 a.m. last Friday playing some stock game (I forget the name) and Agricola, which we love and want to buy. Then last night we played Cuba, but only made it through three rounds out of six. My favorites are still Settlers of Catan, Ticket to Ride Europe and Puerto Rico (and For Sale, but that’s a short one). We don’t play El Grande and Caylus enough. Anyway, I love games!

I haven’t been exercising AT ALL lately. I ran maybe once in the past two weeks and that’s it. I haven’t climbed in more than two months. I just don’t have the time to do everything. I can’t be supermom and finish my book and tutor and exercise. I plan to go running this afternoon, though, after it cools down.

LOVE this hot weather, but wish I had more time to enjoy it. Just working, working, working all the time lately.

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I, Supermom

I have my supermom moments, times when I go above and beyond the normal mom call of duty. The normal call of duty is getting up at all hours of the night and morning. Lately, for example, Shea has been getting up between 6:30 and 7 and STAYING up, while he used to just eat and go back to sleep until 9. Normal call of duty is changing stinky diapers with a smile, doing 20 loads of laundry every week, buying clothes for him and not me, etc, etc, etc. Supermom moments are different. Supermom moments usually happen when I feel like I’m not giving Shea enough attention, for example like after he reached for our nanny instead of me twice in one week (he’s not doing that anymore) or after a moms group during which someone says, “I work full time and I make all my own fresh, organic baby food. My baby has never once eaten jarred food.” That’s when I go home and make a supermom plan. What can I do to redeem myself or all the jars of pureed chicken with sweet potatoes I’ve fed Shea when I only work part time? One of my supermom plans is to review all his colors, numbers and animals in French. Another supermom plan is to go somewhere new, like the Moma, or the Steam Train, or to Guitar Center instead of Trader Joe’s. Another is trekking to the European Book Company in San Francisco to buy Shea new French books and sing him new French songs. So Thursday at my moms group I was telling them how the only food I can get Shea to pick up on his own is Cheerios – and he LOVES Cheerios (well, the Trader Joe’s brand without regular sugar), but that he’ll eat a variety of other foods if I put them in his mouth. So someone suggested I take bits of banana (which Shea likes) and roll them in ground flax seed so they won’t be so sticky and THEN let him pick them up himself. It definitely takes a supermom to roll bits of banana in ground flax seed, and I’ve been trying especially hard lately to be a supermom so Shea won’t think our nanny is his mommy, so that’s what I decided to do. I went to Monterey Market and, along with many other organic foodstuffs that I wouldn’t buy for myself but did buy for Prince Shea, I bought some whole flaxseed (because anyone who lives in Berkeley knows that you have to grind your own flaxseed or it loses all its potency) and took it home only to discover that I already had a bag of unground flaxseed. Anyway, I ground my new flaxseed, broke up the banana into tiny, sticky bits, and rolled them in the powder. Then I cooked a red potato and a yam and mashed them up (but not too mashed, because we’re a big boy now) and then I tore up tiny bits of chicken and sat down with my four bowls of homemade supermom food. I was feeling so smug, so supermom, and so excited to see Shea eat banana all on his own! (I was also thinking about the hours of writing I could have gotten done if I’d just fed him out of a jar). I fed Shea his chicken and potatoes first, saving the flaxseed-rolled bananas for dessert. He loved chicken and he loved the yams, but he repeatedly gagged on the potatoes (even though I had added milk to make them creamy), so we gave up on those. Then, finally, it was time for dessert. I placed one piece of flaxseed-rolled banana on his tray and he reached down with his thumb and index finger, the way he picks up Cheerios, and SPLAT. He poked his finger right through it, then did it again and again until the little ball was flat, then slapped his whole palm down and rubbed it back and forth until the banana was covering most of his tray. Then he looked up at me for more, and, being the supermom that I am, I got up and got a warm, wet washcloth and cleaned up the whole mess, including his hands and his face, and then fed him the rest of the flax-seed covered bananas with a spoon. Today I plan to work on my book while Martin feeds him out of a jar.

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