Thursday, March 31, 2011


so I looked bosu up at target, and they cost 99$. forget it. I seriously don't need to spend that much money on a piece of exercise equipment. I have a thing against getting exercise stuff other than yoga mats, sneakers and other clothing, gps/heart monitor (not that I have one or other), hand weights and dvds. it's the big stuff I don't like. first of all, big equipment is expensive. second of all, where do you put it all? a bosu is practically a piece of furniture. once, I bought an exercise ball and tried really hard to pretend that it was an extra chair in my living room (I lived in a tiny apartment). it wasn't a terrible chair, but it was an awful exercise accessory because it was so hard to pump up, never got completely full, and would never stay 'mostly' inflated. in the end, it just got covered in a maddeningly fine layer of cat and dog hair that was impossible to remove (impossible is probably a bit strong - it's likely I didn't try very hard to remove it). of course I stopped using it for crunches, and then, I was like, what do I do with this giant piece of weird plastic? just throw it away? that's why I don't like exercise furniture - because they just hang about and taunt one if they go unused. that exercise ball became a monument to the moment I had the misguided idea that it would somehow revolutionize the way my abs looked. I would look at the sticky, partially deflated, slightly furry, blue ball and think, you're no hippity hop, and what's so wrong with doing sit-ups on the floor?

I'm sure a hippity hop would have gotten way more play from me

I think what I really wanted was a rody horse

I can't remember what happened to it in the end, but I have a suspicion that john did the dirty work for me and tossed it. maybe I got lucky and convinced someone that they needed a free exercise ball? if I'd been more entrepreneurial, I could have sold it at a yard sale, but that didn't happen.

so now I realize that the bosu will NOT help me regain the body I had when I ran and did yoga every day. 2005 is like waaay gone. no bosu for me. I think I'll ask ktiker about those shred vids she likes. maybe I'll buy the entire family hippity hops. I'll throw a rody horse in for good measure. hm, I'll still have that animal fuzz, weird kind of sticky plastic issue though...I have some more thinking to do.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

the tiles I miss

I don't miss fishtown, but I do miss being within walking distance of many friends. I also miss the tiles that I made and installed. needless to say, those tiles would have been nothing without the beautiful glazes and skills graciously donated to me by liz. if you feel like taking a look through the stock she has in her studio now, check out this website. she was photographing pieces this past monday, so the blog should be updated with new pieces shortly.

I absolutely love the neighborhood we moved to, and the house, of course. again, we're indebted to skip for holding the place for us. now that we're finished with the epic rewiring project, the house is nearly ready for some personalization. it's funny, I still think of the house as nick's. I also still think of our bedroom as skip and betsy's...

oh and

bathroom tiles, glazed, but not fired. I'm super excited to see how they turn out. there's matte white, glossy white, occasional pink, occasional green scales.

and this is my life now

  • my boobs hurt
  • I've lost my baby weight, now I'm only 35lbs overweight
  • I wear a baby around all day
  • my sacrotuberous ligament is messed up, which means that my butt hurts when I sit down
  • I have a rash, ahem, on my ***areas from wearing pads and panty shields for so long
  • everything, but mostly my tummy, jiggles when I move too fast
me from another's point of view

me from my perspective

sigh, I know my body will feel like its normal self again one day, but it's so dark in my world right now that super-milf isn't enough on her own to drag me out of nega brain mode. enter two new role models; co-role models, if you will. I'm thinking about pinning their portraits up in my breakfast room. maybe I should make an inspiration board.

#1 Kelly Osbourne: no offense to KO, but as I non-ironically type that she has become a non-ironic source of inspiration in my life, I'm thinking, "oh F, this is what I've come to." AAAIIIEEEEEEEEEE! that's a typed scream, in case you were wondering. earlier today, I was waiting, half-naked of course, in my exam room at the OB/GYN office today (final postpartum checkup!), reading an OK magazine that featured a long snippet about Kelly Osbourne. yeah, well, even out-of-touch-me knew that she is the face of Madonna & Lourdes' clothing line, but I had no idea she was on Shape's DEC 2010 cover (I was actively avoiding workout magazines during my pregnancy. I LOVE them, but they made me feel sad and yucky during the pregnancy). I came home and found the article online; I must say that KO looks damned good in a bikini.

KO claimed, in the article, that she'd never worn a bikini before. um, I watched the Osbournes and have a very difficult time believing that with all the POOR style choices she made over the years, she NEVER put a bikini on, but whatever

see? not a bikini per se, but certainly an outfit that bares a bunch of stuff. I'm not judging, I'm just sayin, hard to believe no bikini. anyways, go KO! for my early birthday gift to myself, I might buy a bosu. my trainer at my work gym used one all the time with me (all those times I went, ha!), and I really liked it. furthermore, I plan to do the KO workout.

#2 Ricky Gervais: I love RG, he's HILARIOUS! and I think, well, if he can lose weight, then I should be able to lose weight. a false premise, I know, because he dreamt up and co-wrote The Office AND was David Brandt, AND has crazy funny podcasts - none of which I can do, nor think I should be able to do. so, we'll see how the weight loss thing goes...

these before and after pics come from the Shape magazine website.

Monday, March 28, 2011

pika pi!

a long time ago, whilst I was working on my MS degree, NPR kept talking about Pokemon. "what IS this thing, this odd word, pokemon?" I would think. then my friend, tracey told me: "one of the little girls in my after school photography class told me that she's not even allowed to say the word pokemon during school."

that sealed it, I decided that as soon as I finished writing my master's thesis, I'd figure out just WHAT pokemon WAS. but, I'd started dating John a few months before, and didn't account for his romantic stylings. for valentine's day (months before I finished my writing my thesis) he presented me with a cute, red game boy

and a Pokemon Yellow game

in no time flat, I was hooked on being Ash, hanging about with Pikachu. MS thesis BE DAMNED! I was catching them all.

so, anyways, I got real up close and personal with the phenomenon of pokemon, and to this day I have a clear memory for many of the original pokemon, as well as their transformations and properties. pikachu is still my favorite pokemon. how could it be ANY other way, when Yellow was the first version I played? yes, you read that right, "first version." I've played at least three of those games. scary, I know.

but really, pokemon is waaaay old news. there's a new (to me) PHENOM in town, the Bieber... right now, he's as alien to me as pokemon was when NPR began to report their stories, and I've never heard any of his songs, well, except for at the store, when I elected to push the "try me" button.

ktiker's sunday post reminded me that I'd taken the following photo on Saturday, when I remarked to myself, "huh, his haircut, 'the bieber,' even beavers are getting it."

maybe pikachu should get it?

oh wait, what was I writing about? um, hm. I'm pretty sure that I began this post with a point. lost it. OK then! hey, how about that justin bieber guy? that's his name, right?

btw, kudos to ktiker for turning me onto pizap! thanks!

Saturday, March 26, 2011

if only...

if only I'd had like a modicum of foresight, I'd have actually used tags to ORGANIZE these posts. then, I'd be able to efficiently search my blog. but since I have pretty much only used them to make jokey comments or not at all (with the occasional proper tag thrown in), they're no use to me whatsoever now. but hey, what can you expect from someone who went to art school and had a nasty habit of moving about the country without first finding a job in the next city?

so ANYWAYS, I was thinking that I'd perhaps posted about Pie Minister before. did I? I feel like I did, but I'll never know because I, for one, am not about to go back through my random burblings to find out. regardless, I looked them up on a whim today and found - to my deeeelight - a recipe! I can't wait to make some serious pie. the following three images make my heart light and saliva run (they're all pie minister pie pics):

years ago, when johnke and I were on our honeymoon in London (we've lost ALL our photos, by the way), I had two major goals: (1) find and eat a bonafide scotch egg* and (2) sample as many pies as possible. in my quest to fulfill goal number two (a real stretch, let me tell you), I found the lovely and amazing Pie Minister. oh, how I longed to have them emigrate to the US. alissa assures me that pies are all the rage these days, but back then, savory pies (in the US) mostly came from the frozen food section of supermarkets.

I'm not knocking them - I've eaten my fair share of frozen pot pie, but they're not the same as the British version of the pie. Pie Minister's pies can be eaten on the go, and they're not just delicious in a strange-but-comforting way, they're super awesomely tasty.

blah blah, I can't wait to make my own pie! oh, and you know what's really sad about my then commitment to Pie Minister pies? I brought one of their boxes back home as a souvenir (pic 3), and I still have it.

*goal #1 was inspired by the following scene in the bbc version of the office

Thursday, March 24, 2011


and the kermit is BACK! welcome back, girl! link to fiwc&mc on right sidebar.

super-milf to the rescue

I'm ready to say it - since becoming pregnant, or maybe since the insane poison ivy episode, I've had absolutely zero sense of humor. now, I'm completely hormonal and get like a million tv crushes (um, a post about tim riggins? there you go, case-in-point), but am like a cranky b once 8pm rolls around. gaaaaaaaaah! I need to save myself from the abyss of crazy, so in comes my new role model: nancy botwin. check it out, she's a strong working mother, who loses her sense of humor every once in a while, but you know, she still summons the strength to care about her clothes, shoes, and makeup - in other words, she takes care of herself. oh, and she knows how to rule the roost (sort of), plus she's plucky and kooky and FUNNY.

another thing, I really like her season 6, longer socks than boots look. I'm ready to rock that - you know, once my legs go back to normal.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

smiley day

so, I think that Max may have proffered his first smile today. actually, I thought that maybe he'd smiled yesterday, but I didn't want to jump the gun. today the smile seemed to be more purposeful. I was totally sucky at journaling Henry's developmental achievements. UNLIKE miss Jenn, over at The World of Abigail Grace (link on right sidebar), I didn't keep a blog (but I did begin one!), or even an official baby book. I jotted down impressions month by month until 7 months...

true story: as a young girl, my mother-in-law found her baby book, and took issue with the fact that it hadn't been filled out. Gayle was the youngest of three girls. when she brought the book to her mother, her mom calmly sat her down, and proceeded to fill in the blanks. the joke is that for the most part, my mother-in-law's mom just made up all the facts. this is to be my fate. I have a general outline to work with, but no real details. there are moments I remember; e.g. first tooth poking through the gum, first walk, weaning from the breast, & etc., but no absolute dates for other facts: crawling, first word (other than "no"), first smile... hey, I painstakingly brought my little medical record book to all of Henry's well-visits to record all his weights and lengths, along with his complete vaccination record, but didn't think about the wasted effort: the pediatrician's office kept a record of all that for me. I should have been focused on a milestone journal. doh.

OK, resolution - keep a blog for the babies, to be resumed at the above site...give address out to grandparents, aunts, and uncles so that I must keep it up.

Monday, March 21, 2011


I've had to suspend my pad thai eating privileges for the time being. the delay will end when I'm able to fit into the clothing that I'd like to fit into.

that photo isn't mine, I took it off of ChezPim's site. and if I haven't already linked to it, here's her recipe for pad thai. I've made both the vegetarian (vegan) and traditional versions of the sauce, and the traditional version kicks ass so badly that I want to eat a giant helping every day. I try not to eat shrimp, and I almost never have meat in the house (habit from when John was vegetarian), so I've been making a version with whatever vegetables I have around (and the egg and tofu, of course!). it's heavenly.

oh yeah, I made that roasted chicken (thomas keller's), and it was likewise delicious. not so much so that I'd want to eat it every day, but I must say the breast meat was especially remarkable. it was tender and fall-apartingly, meltingly, delicious (I'm generally more fond of dark meat). pair that with some ginger-scallion dipping sauce and, to quote emeril lagasse (sp?), "wah-bam!"

I posted a recipe for the ginger-scallion dipping sauce on July 29, 2010, but here it is, in an easier to read format:

chunk of ginger, grated (about a generous top-of-your-thumb-joint size: ratio of ginger to scallion should be close to 1:1)
1 scallion, minced (green and white parts)
pinch msg (optional)
salt to taste
enough neutrally flavored oil to cover the above ingredients

heat-proof bowl
small, thick-bottomed pot, or saucepan

mix all ingredients in heat-proof bowl, heat oil in small, thick-bottomed pot until smoking, then pour it over the spice mixture. the oil will sizzle and cook the ginger/scallion combo and become really yummy.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

terrifying and fortifying

the one thing about being alone (well, alone avec bebe) during the day is that I can read for long stretches of time without feeling antisocial. ok, so maybe long stretches of time don't occur in an uninterrupted fashion, but I can still squeeze the reading in between baby soothing jags. I finished Swamplandia! this morning, and I found it to be at once deeply disturbing and comforting. the writing is enveloping - something I don't remember feeling about the short stories - karen russell wrote the worlds out with a masterful combination of tragically comic invention, and hallucinatory, hypnotic description. what's tragic about this novel? well, first of all, it's one of the saddest coming-of-age stories I've ever read, and second of all, it made me realize that there are all sorts of ways that we need to delude ourselves in order to cope with (insert word of choice here: e.g. self, world, life, rat-race). what's heartening about it? well, the fact that we can have loved ones to share delusions with. maybe you don't ever have this feeling, but sometimes I wonder just how incorrectly I perceive myself and my actions. most of the time that feeling is way way way deep down, but books like this bring it to the fore, and it gets sort of frightening to really go there. I mean, it's hard to be an impartial judge of oneself, so you know, it's easy to believe that one's idea of oneself is pretty much nothing but a favorable edit for the most part. and if our views of ourselves are mostly airbrushed reality, or even straight-up daydreamy fiction, well, what then????

so anyways, that book went back to the library today, and I picked up a couple of cook books, a book on ferns and mosses, and a book about the amazon river. no fiction - does anyone have any suggestions?

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

a lonely day

as you may have noticed, I haven't been posting much within the last month. you may have assumed that this was due to the fact that I had a baby cut out of me towards the end of February, but in fact, the real reason is that I've been too busy sitting about chatting and cooking with Alissa. well, John and I dropped her off at the airport yesterday, so today is the FIRST day post-partum that I'm spending alone (with the baby). sigh. it was so lovely to have someone to pass the time with. I did nothing, and it felt good. now I'm going to have to confront all of those projects I'd like to get done - which is also good, but in a very different way.

that is, until Zab gets here, in the beginning of April!!!

Monday, March 14, 2011

i lurv thomas keller

I was putzing around on chezpim this morning, ended up reading the roasted chicken post, a few of its comments, and allowed myself to be directed to a thomas keller recipe (for roasted chicken), then found this video clip. I learned about thomas keller when I stumbled upon the soul of a chef, nearly a decade ago. I've dreamt of eating at the french laundry ever since, but my culinary crush itself receded into a background crush a long time ago. watching this clip has renewed my crushdom, and I've reserved each of his cookbooks at my local library. so far the best thing about maternity leave, besides not having to work, has been cooking (and hanging out with alissa - often cooking). now I have two active crushes; add tim riggins to thomas keller. mmmmm. the drama of friday night lights is generally so crazed that I end up just laughing at it, but I still like to watch tim riggins and, so, I find myself asking the tv (and Liz, who shares this crush), why can't those writers just let tim riggins catch a break already? which tim riggins do you like best? btw, don't read the book, friday night lights, unless you want to find yourself depressed and cursing school-age sports like football (ever seen hoop dreams? if not, stay away from that one too).

1. football tim riggins (aka texas forever tim riggins)

2. in love with lyla garrity tim riggins

3. life is a bitch tim riggins

oh wait, I forgot, I have a third current crush, the moby wrap.

I swear this wrap never fails to calm an infant. max is currently sleeping in henry's hand-me-down moby wrap. henry loved it too. to all mothers I've failed to purchase this for, I apologize now (Jenn Maugle, I'm thinking of you, in particular).

oh, and while I'm on the subject of baby items I'm crushing on, I may as well add another superstar to the list, the baby bjorn infant seat.

my seat is like the great great great...grandmother of the one shown, but it's just as good even though it doesn't have the toy bar (actually, I'm not sure I like the looks of that device). a good friend gave me hers, once her babies were through with it, and it immediately became henry's favorite seat. actually, it became the only seat we used. henry preferred it over swinging versions, and max loves it too. max can sleep in the seat for hours, and there are days when he spends most of his non-breast time sleeping in the wrap and the seat.