Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Exciting Things for Our First Thing

So, Thing 1 has some exciting news. On her own she has been connecting with a lot of people in the writing industry--writers, editors, etc. Working on her monthly column for The Write Practice has been extremely helpful, but she is also one driven girl.

She sent a query letter to one such blogger looking for feedback. Basically the letter is one that Thing 1 would like to send to prospective agents, convincing them to take her on and represent her novel. She asked us for help, and we looked at the letter, and we both thought, "Wow! That's great!" Well, neither Stacy nor I are published authors, and we have zero experience with query letters.

I guess I have slightly more than zero experience, but not much. I did submit a manuscript of children's poetry to about 30 agents about 15 years ago. Judging by my lack of success, I am not the right person to give advice about query letters.

Anyway, back to the exciting things. Go check out Michelle's Vlog at Random Writing Rants talking all about the big event coming up on Friday. Hint: It involves Thing 1, but you knew that already, didn't you?

UPDATE: Here's the actual post with the query letter.

The Quizzes Keep Coming!


Thanks again, Magic Violinist for a chance to answer more questions! That's another major award!

  1. Link back to the person who nominated you.
  2. Attach the icon to your site.
  3. Answer the attached questions.
  4. Nominate six bloggers who you feel deserve this award and notify them about their nominations. 
1. What is your favorite color?
Green, although blue is a close second. I think I like green because it seems to fit all the seasons in some way or another.

2. What is your favorite animal?
Well, a dog is hard to beat, especially since we've got an awesome one. I still really like monkeys, though.

3. What is your favorite non-alcoholic drink?
Hands down it's water. It refreshes. It's healthy. It's one of those things that can really make you feel better when you drink it. Plus, I sweat very easily, so I'm constantly needing water.

4. What is your favorite number?
I don't know if I have a favorite number. I always liked 13 as a kid because I refused to believe anything so arbitrary as a number could be lucky or unlucky. I wore number 22 when I played baseball because my favorite player wears number 22. The number 73 is kind of cool, for all the reasons Sheldon Cooper likes it. I like numbers.

5. What is your favorite day of the week? 
I really don't know on this one. I like every day for different reasons. I probably like weekends the best because I don't work at the hospital as often over the weekends so I have more time to hang out with Stacy and the family, play games, watch movies, or whatever else sounds good.

6. What is your favorite flower?
I don't have a favorite since I like a lot of variety. I really like the simplicity of daisies. They fit my general taste.

7. What is your passion? I wish I knew. I have lots of things I love, but sadly, day-to-day life and complications have sort of squelched that part of my psyche. I'm trying to rediscover it.

8. Do you watch television?
I do. Not a TON, but it is a nice way to unwind at the end of a day. I watch mostly sit-coms, like "The Big Bang Theory" or "Modern Family." "Go On" is becoming a family favorite. Stacy and I successfully caught up on 7 seasons of "30 Rock" and now we can enjoy the series finale with the rest of the country.

9. Who is your favorite author?
Hemingway. I love the straightforward style of his writing. I appreciate that he can convey a very complex and deep story without needing to confuse the reader with long sentences and archaic language. I love Tolkein, for different reasons.

10. Do you like 80s movies?
Yes, I do. They were fun and quirky and had great writing and characters. The best ones didn't have to stoop to low levels for a cheap laugh.

11. How do you like your eggs?
Mixed in some sort of dough or batter. Please don't make me eat them! I didn't do anything wrong! I can make them pretty well, though.

12. When did you discover blogging?
I discovered it a number of years ago and thought it could be a great way to do online journaling and share pictures and things. I'm not the greatest blogger, but I enjoy it when I do write.

13. Why do you like to blog? 
It's a fun way to share a lot about myself and also share thoughts I'm having. I also like sharing things that our family is doing.

1. Thing 2 at I Don't Eat My Drumsticks.
2. My mom, of I Don't Have a Blog but I Often Have Witty Things to Say.
3. Peter, at I Also Do Not Have a Bog, but Maybe I Should.
4. Dave, of News of My Demise (or I Enjoyed Arguing with Illogical People at Facebook--Until I Took a Break).
5. Chuck, at I Can't Think of Any Other People Who Might See This and Do It So I Picked a Random Name.
6. Adelaide, at See Number 5 Above.

Friday, January 25, 2013

Sisterhood of the World Bloggers Award (Mark)


I'm not sure how I was included in the Sisterhood, but I'll take it as a compliment. Hey, I've been included in far worse groups so I'll proudly post the award. Thanks, Thing 1!


  • Acknowledge the person who passed the award to you and provide their link.
  • Include the award logo on your blog.
  • Answer the ten questions posted below.
  • Make up your own ten questions for the next people.
  • Nominate blogs and link those you have especially enjoyed reading. The number you can select is up to you.
  • Notify each individual that you have nominated them.

The Magic Violinist's Questions

1. Do you like to write? If so, what kind of stuff? (Stories, reports, poems, just blogging, etc.)

I like to write a lot more than I remember liking as a kid. I like writing a lot of different things, and like the challenge of trying new things, even if I rarely take the time for it. I've enjoyed writing books (especially the one I did with Stacy). I also like the fantasy novel I wrote 2 years ago. Admittedly I like that book more now that I've seen the kids' responses to it. I also like writing poems sometimes. When I blog I'm reminded of how much fun that can be. I like answering questions that other people write for me to answer. I'm working on writing up the rules for a game Thing 2 and I are making. I'm working on writing a teleplay for a sitcom and also have ideas for movie screenplays. Where to start, where to start . . .

2. What book or movie has inspired you most and why?

That is a very tough question. OK. I thought of one. The book Les Miserables by Victor Hugo. I read the entire unabridged version while I was commuting to San Francisco for a job. My commute was 2 hours long so I read a lot, and that is a book I always wanted to read. The story is incredible, and the interactions between characters is fantastic. Stacy and I saw the musical on Broadway and the performance is awe-inspiring. The right story paired with the perfect music is something that can't be explained--it has to be felt. We're hoping to see the movie this weekend, so maybe I'll add the movie to this list, as well.

3. What song gives you chills every time you hear it?

There are quite a few songs that can do it, but the first one that came to mind is "Fragile" by Sting. The lyrics are incredible and the music itself is haunting. I've heard multiple versions of the song, both live and from the studio, and it doesn't matter which one it is. They are all incredible. 

Others that can give me chills include "The Book of Love" by Peter Gabriel, "Free Fallin'" performed by John Mayer, and anything performed by J.J. Johnson (jazz trombonist).

4. What is the weirdest thing you do?

I'm not sure what would be considered weird, especially since I seem completely normal to me. Help me out here! Someone?

5. If you could eat a color, what color would you eat and what would it taste like?

I think I'd like to try eating red. I bet it would be spicy. Yum!

6. What is your favorite stuffed animal and why? (You can post a picture, if you'd like)!

My all-time favorite stuffed animal is my raccoon named Guy. Right now he's somewhere in the attic of my parents' house, which is the house in which I grew up. I've had him for as long as I can remember. My new favorite is my Webkinz raccoon named Guy. The kids bought it for me for Christmas and he is pretty cool. Plus, online, he has an awesome house, complete with a baseball-themed bedroom and sports bar-themed playroom.

7. What is your favorite gaming website and why?

I don't do a lot of gaming so this one is tough. I suppose I'd say Wizard101 because the quests are pretty fun and I enjoy leveling up my wizard. It's been fun to play with the kids as well.

8. What annoys you most?

Things that waste my time, especially if I've taken the time to streamline a process. Why make things efficient if no one else seems to care? And I really don't have enough time for all the things I need/want to do so anything that wastes that precious commodity is on my list.

9. If you could have a million dollars for a day, what would you do with it?

I'd probably spend the whole day wondering what I should do with a million dollars. A few things that come to mind are paying off my student loans, paying off the mortgage (so exciting, right?), prepaying for a massive trip around the world, and giving away money to random people.

10. If you were ruler of the world for a day, what would you do to change the world?

You mean I'm not the ruler already? ;) I would take all the leaders of all the countries and lock them in a room until they figured out a way to coexist peacefully while providing for the needs of the entire world. There are more than enough resources to make sure we have no poor and hungry in the world. How long can I be leader again?


I nominate whoever feels like answering my questions. I don't have the energy to even consider who might see this and feel like doing it. I think I know the answer, though.

Now, My Questions

1. Do you like making lists of questions? Why?
2. If you had to make a Scale of Awesome with "0" being "Totally NOT Awesome" and "10" being "So Totally Awesome It Will Explode from Sheer Awesomeness," what examples would you use to illustrate such degrees of Awesomeness?
3. What 3 qualities do you value most in a friend?
4. Divide your life so far into 4 equal parts. Using food, how would you describe each time period?
5. In your opinion, who let the dogs out?
6. If you could be named anything else, what name would you choose? ("I wouldn't change my name. I like my name" is not an acceptable answer.)
7. If your life were a movie, under which genre would it be listed?
8. Which actor would you cast to play you in the movie from question #7?
9. If hell meant watching the same TV show or movie over and over again forever and ever, what would your eternal torment be?
10. Paper or plastic? Discuss.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Sisterhood of the World Bloggers Award


My awesome daughter received an award and then nominated me for it, too! How lucky am I?

  • Acknowledge the person who passed the award to you and provide their link.
  • Include the award logo on your blog.
  • Answer the ten questions posted below.
  • Make up your own ten questions for the next people.
  • Nominate blogs and link those you have especially enjoyed reading. The number you can select is up to you.
  • Notify each individual that you have nominated them.

The Magic Violinist's Questions for Me

1. Do you like to write? If so, what kind of stuff? (Stories, reports, poems, just blogging, etc.)
I don't like to write . . . I love to write. I like to write anything - emails, blog posts, whatever. But when I do work on my novels and stories, I tend to like semi-autobiographical writing and I like it to be funny (because I like to laugh). I also have noticed that I often like stories that deal with some aspect of mental health. 
2. What book or movie has inspired you most and why?
Hmmmm. Different books and movies inspire me for different reasons. For example, A Tree Grows in Brooklyn and Jane Eyre inspire me to want to write beautifully . . . words of worth. Those books are both so beautiful, that I feel myself taking in the words and savoring them instead of just rushing through for the story. On the other hand, the Harry Potter series inspires me, because it's so GOOD and so intricate and so, well, inspired! I think J.K. Rowling is an inspired genius and that, in and of itself, inspires me. As for movies, lots of documentaries inspire me by educating me and many foreign films inspire me with their wonderful, ambiguous endings that make me think and wonder and decide my thoughts on the story.
3. What song gives you chills every time you hear it?
"The Prayer" by Celine Dion and Andrea Bocelli - there is a note they hit, right at the end, that always gives me chills. In fact, I got them just now even thinking about that note. 
4. What is the weirdest thing you do?
I feel like I should let someone else answer this, because if I do something, I probably don't think it's weird. Lemme think . . . okay, I've got one. Whenever I eat, I do this thing - without even consciously thinking about it - where I eat a little of everything so that when I'm almost done eating, there is exactly one bite of each thing on my plate.
5. If you could eat a color, what color would you eat and what would it taste like?
Hmmm. I think yellow would be citrus-y and fresh. I think green would be healthy and energizing. I'm going to go with blue, because it's my favorite color and I think it would taste rich, but not overbearing, and delicious. I think it would make me feel calm and good all over, much like the color itself does. 
6. What is your favorite stuffed animal and why? (You can post a picture, if you'd like)!
I love all of my kids' stuffed animals because I know how special they are. A personal favorite of mine would have to be Tubby, my stuffed bear. I've had him since I was a kid and he is worn and loved and comfortable for snuggling. (I have always known that toys are real and have feelings - way before Toy Story).
7. What is your favorite gaming website and why?
Umm, I don't play a lot of online games, but I've always enjoyed Boxerjam's Strike-a-Match and we used to enjoy playing Ticket To Ride online, too. One More Level can be fun for a quick break now and then. I like Webkinz. And I want to check out Pottermore. I prefer blogging to gaming, though. Really, my bigger distractions on the Internet are news sites and articles as well as my email. 
8. What annoys you most?
Flakiness. And when people are disrespectful of my time. 
9. If you could have a million dollars for a day, what would you do with it?
Well, if I could have it for a day, I'd better use it, right? I'd pay off ALL debts, build a new custom house - no, two houses - one here and one somewhere else (probably on the beach), I'd hire a personal assistant, buy tickets to all the things and places and events we'd like to see - a trip to Europe, etc., help people who could use the help, maybe get a nice RV for road trips, and invest it as a way to make it last. As I type this, I am reminded of something someone just told me - money does not buy happiness, but it can sure help us not be UNhappy.
10. If you were ruler of the world for a day, what would you do to change the world? 

I'd want to rid the world of anything that would hurt people . . . so I think I'd try to get to the root of the issues . . . . and try to rectify ideologies that perpetuate harm. Encourage peace and equality for all.

I nominate anyone who would like to do this post. I specifically nominate bythelbs to kick off her foray into traveling pants and sisterhoods. :) Otherwise, I'd love to hear Emily's thoughts, Jimmy's thoughts, and my kids' thoughts. But now I think I'm just naming the only people who actually read and comment anymore (who aren't already doing this tag - like Mark). :P And I suck, because I haven't read Emily's blog in about 3 weeks. I'd tag my other SILs, but I don't think they blog anymore. What is happening to the world?!?

My Questions 
1. What are 3 of your favorite TV shows and why?
2. What is one of your very favorite simple pleasures?
3. What is the name of one of the books you have in a pile to read?
4. What is your favorite thing to do with your sibling(s)?
5. What is your favorite thing to do when you have quiet time?
6. If you could have a free meal weekly at any kind of restaurant, what kind of cuisine would you choose?
7. What is something about which you are VERY curious?
8. If you could build a dream house, what special room would you want in it?
9. What is your favorite and least favorite household chore?
10. Paper or Plastic?

Thanks again, Thing 1, for the award! :

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

22 Days In . . .

Well, we're 3 weeks into the new year and we've had:

a $400 dentist bill
a $350 mechanic bill
a $150+ orthodontist bill (that one is monthly)

and as I type this, there is a plumber in our basement yelling and cursing and very worried about the job ahead of him given the bizarre sewer pipe routing in this 160+-year-old house. With every ticking minute and every uttered curse word, I can't help but wonder what this is going to cost (we've been up late for 2 nights in a row with back up issues, have bought Drano multiple times and thought we had the situation fixed - when all the bathrooms started backing up as we were going to bed yesterday, we knew we were in trouble - we've had no water usage since. . ).

(Hey Mom, that free toilet paper? Apparently, too thick and fancy for our old house). :(

I really was doing a good job not freaking out about our quarterly taxes increasing due to the social security tax hike and I was even choosing a healthy perspective with regard to our property taxes going up 120%.

But man oh man, what a way to start the new year.

Sunday, January 20, 2013

A LOT of Opinionated and Very Random Thoughts

"I like Angus Beef. I like Buffalo Burgers, too, 
but I feel bad for the buffalo when I eat them.
For some reason, I don't feel bad
 for the chickens when I eat chicken."
-- Thing 2's words at dinner on 11/28/2012


I love spontaneous love and hugs from my kids.
I got a big hug from Thing 2 yesterday, just because,
 with an "I can't wait to cuddle with you tonight!"
We made hot cocoa and watched X-Factor together
while cuddling on the couch.
-- I wrote this on 12/1/2012


Thing 1 played violin with the Hershey Symphony for their
annual holiday concert.
What an honor. She did a great job!
So proud of her.


 Anyone else think John Travolta looks embalmed?


At our Christmas Eve dinner, my mom and Jim were
at the table in our dining room with the kids
talking generally about dress and appearance with Thing 1.
I was in the kitchen bringing food
 in when I heard them bust up laughing.
Apparently, they said (speaking of how I dress),
"Your mother is conservative,"
to which Thing 1 replied,
"No she's not. She's a Democrat."
Bwahahahahahaha! LOVE her!


Hashtags are funny sometimes.
But their overuse is REALLY annoying.


My mom came for the holidays and treated the kids to
a shopping spree at the locale of their choice.
Thing 2 chose a gaming/card shop for Yu-Gi-Oh! Cards.
Thing 1 turned down my mom's suggestion of Claire's
in favor of a book store.
Do I have the coolest kids ever or what?


Thing 2's birthday is the same day as his favorite author, J.R.R. Tolkien.
How cool is that?


We pay for our own high-deductible health insurance.
I had a regular yearly exam. That was covered.
The lab fees? Over $500.


I think I have worn make up maybe twice in the past year.


This season's Modern Family has been a little bleh at times for me,
but this season's Big Bang Theory is beyond awesome.
It keeps getting better and better.
That takes serious writing talent.
Saw an article that said it is reaching milestones
 only reached by M*A*S*H and I Love Lucy.


I sit through movie credits.


I don't like dim lighting when I'm eating.
I'm a romantic, but I like to see my food.


I heart Tina Fey.


I don't know that I'll ever understand the extreme loyalty
people feel toward sports teams.
Not saying it's wrong.
Just saying I don't get it.
I think it's weird when people feel an allegiance to a team
just because they live near them.
Geography determines your commitment?
(If they like them anyway, I get it.
If it's just because they live near them?
Not so much.)


I was talking with a group of families the other day.
One woman said, "Everybody's working more and making less."
Another woman said, "Or they're making the same
but getting benefits cut, which ends up costing more."
Another person said, "Or getting the same pay
but costs are rising beyond what they can afford."
I have seen examples of all those things.
Not one of those scenarios isn't stressful and depressing.


A New Year's exchange between Thing 1 and a friend:
Jake: I'm so perfect, I don't need a New Year's Resolution.
Thing 1: How about being less arrogant?

My kids are both working on New Year's resolutions of their own accord.
Thing 2 is trying to eat more vegetarian meals (which he loves).
Thing 1 is teaching herself to play guitar.


My mom and Jim came for Christmas.
It was so nice to have them here for that.
Then my mom stayed for a couple of weeks.
During that time we commemorated the 5th anniversary
of my Dad's death with a memorial ceremony we do every year.
Mark surprised my mom and me with flowers, too.


Our van just passed 100K.
I didn't take a picture,
but I'm commemorating it here.


I think it's lame that younger generations get accused of lack of appreciation
just because of when they're born (as if that's their fault).
I'm sure it happens to every generation -
younger people get perceived as selfish and uncaring
because they're born to an "easier" time.
I can appreciate past generations and yet enjoy the present
as well as have different challenges.
Not unlike years ago.
Those who lived through WWII didn't have the same challenges
 as those who lived through WWI.
 Those who lived in the 50s didn't have the same challenges
 as those who crossed the plains.
It's interesting to note the differences,
but why the one-ups-man-ship?
Every generation has it both easier and harder than the one before.
It's just different.


I am a neat and clean person,
but our house gets messy sometimes,
and I am totally okay with that.


"That's just how I am" - acceptance or cop out?


I generally prefer TV series over movies.
It goes along with how I prefer working with clients
on a long-term outpatient basis compared to shorter, inpatient stints.


Bullying is wrong, no question.
But I really think the word "bullying" gets tossed around FAR too much.
 Where's the campaign to help people learn to not be victims
of every perceived slight?
Not kidding.
It's called therapy.
Plus it's insulting to those who are truly bullied
to use that term for every time someone upsets you.
It is not the same thing.


Like with the tragedy that is suicide.
It's horrible, horrible, horrible, and so incredibly sad and tragic.
But to fault others for the choice one makes with one's own life
isn't fair either.
It's true their actions may have contributed to the person's decision.
But the choice is that person's
and they ultimately own it.
It's normal to question, but it's not right 
for someone to be plagued by guilt and carry that responsibility.
Nor is it fair to point fingers.
I think that perpetuates the problem.
I'm thinking specifically of the situation with the nurse
in the UK who was pranked by the Australian DJs
(extremely poor judgment but not meant as malicious)
and the Rutgers bullying case
(which was nothing short of utterly despicable).
While I believe strongly in the inter-connectedness of all people,
and I think we can all be powerful influences on one another with words and actions,
and I very much believe we should choose to do good with our words and actions,
we all own our own actions.
It's not okay to say that someone's choice to take their own life
is someone else's fault.


It occurred to me in the shower one day that you can’t exactly finish this sentence well.
Here's the challenge - 
Fill in the blank with a word that fits (because I can't think of one that does):
I'm not a __________; I just don't want them to have what I have.
(I've heard that sentence filled in with words like bigot, racist, hater . . .
none of those go together with the next part of the sentence
or without the person making the statement looking like a tool).


I thought about writing a book about a world
 in which you could always see someone's thoughts.
But then Facebook was invented.
There went that idea.


Overheard: "I can't read my book; the battery died."
That just makes me sad.


Two very cool news stories I read recently are
this one and
this one.
There are good people in the world.
We don't hear enough about them.


Have I ever mentioned that I dislike HOAs?
 Not. A. Fan.
 The way I look at it, you're paying someone
 to tell you what to do with your home.
 How have people bought into this (no pun intended)?
 I understand it's an attempt to keep homes looking nice
 so that values stay high,
 but it presupposes that everyone's an idiot
 who wouldn't keep things nice unless told, scolded, and fined.
 Seriously, I dislike the concept so much
 that the main character in my first book
 had a lot to say about them ( she doesn't like them either). :P 


Wow, I started writing this post over a month ago.
I managed to write an entire post
without one mention of the NRA.
Maybe I'm more disciplined than I thought.


And even though I'm not a big sports fan,
I think a Patriots-Niners Superbowl would be fun.
And yes, I'm more excited about the food.


Saw Ed Asner on the Macy's Day Parade coverage.
He reminds me of my Uncle Joe.


Before these recent holidays,
 our kids went a whole year
 where they spent time in the presence of a grandparent
 for 3 total days (not in a row).
 Those who are near extended family help,
you're lucky.
Though I admit that we have some friends who live near family
and they say we're lucky.
Maybe the heart of the matter is what kind of family you have!

Dianne Sawyer and JK Rowling.
 I don't usually care for blondes, but I think they're both stunning.


Came across this version of a great song the other day
and I so so so wish it were available for download.
Natalie Merchant, Peter Gabriel, and Michael Stipe together?
Who thought that up?


I just watched a grown man on TV pitch a major hissy fit
when a football call didn't go his team's way.
What is manly about that?
Someone please explain that to me.
Because if a 6 or 10 or 16 year old acted like that,
everyone would tell that child to grow up.
Seeing a grown man do it?
Way more idiotic.


Friday, January 18, 2013

Thing 2's Birthday Party Adventure!

I already posted about Thing 2's birthday, but I still need to share about his birthday party. This year he wanted to have a role-playing party and it was a lot of fun to plan. First of all, we had 17 kids at the house. Yes, that's right. Seventeen. We are so awesome (and a little insane), but mostly awesome. It was an energetic bunch, but that made all of the games so much fun. I also have to say thank you to the parents who stuck around and helped out at the party. It really helped.

On to the party . . .

Thing 2 with his cake, before the party. Those are dice. You knew that, right?

What party would be complete without the themed foods. We had (pretzel) wands, loot (goldfish, pretzels, and other surprises), and veggies. We wanted to do something medieval, but the thought of 17 kids wandering around with chicken legs and hunks of meat was not appealing. So, we opted for chicken nuggets and meatballs. Sort of barbaric in an entirely different way. The kids washed everything down with ale (ginger ale and birch beer). As always, we went way overboard but everyone ate well.

Thing 1 and Thing 2 dressed up in costume for the party.

There were the requisite streamers and other decorations . . .

. . . including appropriate role-playing pictures. 

Here are our adventurers before the party, some in costume.

We played dice games, which are necessary for any role-playing adventures.

Thing 2 and his band of rogues.

Everyone listened as we spun a tale of adventure!

Even Scout listened intently (or she thought there was food nearby).

Speaking of food, Stacy kept it flowing.

Vavó was there, and a few brave parents remained . . .


. . . which was a good thing since feeding this many hungry adventurers is hard work!


Stacy headed up the cake crew.

And Thing 2 gave us another smile before his birthday wishes.

It's always hard to capture all the fun that we have at these birthday parties, but it was an awesome afternoon. Thing 2 was ecstatic for hours afterward and had a really great time. Another happy birthday to Thing 2!

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Weirdest Things

My daughter wrote this meme and tagged me, so I guess it's time to get my weird on.

Here are the rules:

1. If you are tagged, answer the questions in the meme in a blog post on your blog.
2. Make sure at the beginning of your post you put a link to the blog of the person who tagged you.
3. Tag at least three people to do the same thing (you can tag more than three people if you would like).
4. Have fun! :D

What do you think the weirdest color is? Chartreuse. I'm not sure if it's the color itself or the name. Either way, weird.

What is the weirdest TV show/movie you have ever seen? I'll agree that "Napoleon Dynamite" is weird, but I think Teletubbies takes the cake. Plus, isn't it a little weird how you have to watch them do the same things TWICE every episode. As if once wasn't Twilight Zone enough!

What is the weirdest food you have ever tried? Pig uterus. It was chewy.

What is the weirdest drink you have ever tried? In Japan they have this drink called Pocari Sweat. It's a Gatorade type of drink without the colors. Also, it's not good. And who is this Pocari guy, and why is his sweat in a bottle?!

Who is your weirdest friend? I have a few, but I'm not going to single them out.

What is the weirdest thing you have ever seen on the internet? I can't think of one specific thing, but I can say that it was on Facebook. Honestly, people, how do you have so much time?

What is the weirdest thing your pet has ever done? Let me see . . . She used to bark at her reflection. That's weird. She licks her private parts. That's weird as well. She spins in place over and over again until the blanket beneath her finally seems comfortable enough to lay down. That's weird, too. She does lots of weird things, but she's cute.

What is the weirdest book you have ever read? The Confederacy of Dunces. Yeah, that was weird. I'm sure there are others, but that one stands out as a recent foray into the weird.

What is the weirdest blog you follow? I don't really follow weird stuff as much as I happen upon it. I follow XKCD, which is more geeky than weird, but it is weird that a couple of stick-figures have such philosophical and scientific conversations.

I would love to tag someone, but sadly all those people I think would actually do this post have already been tagged. Is it WEIRD that so few people I know would do this?

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Weirdest Things

My awesome daughter wrote this meme and tagged me, so here I go. 

Here are the rules:

1. If you are tagged, answer the questions in the meme in a blog post on your blog.
2. Make sure at the beginning of your post you put a link to the blog of the person who tagged you.
3. Tag at least three people to do the same thing (you can tag more than three people if you would like).
4. Have fun! :D

What do you think the weirdest color is? Teal.

What is the weirdest TV show/movie you have ever seen? Napolean Dynamite. I just don't get it.

What is the weirdest food you have ever tried? Horse. And I only say that because you'd be hard pressed to find a weird food I haven't eaten growing up and when I was in Portugal, someone served me meat and then told me it was horse and, well, that was a first, so it was weird to me.

What is the weirdest drink you have ever tried? I believe it was called The Beverly - the Italian Coca-Cola drink. Sampled it (and about 100 other drinks) when we visited the Coca-Cola company in Atlanta this past spring.

Who is your weirdest friend? I have a lot of crazy friends, but weird? I have a lot of acquaintances that are weird. Oh, I know who! Wait, now I'm not thinking about weird as a good thing, so I'll keep my thoughts to myself on this one.

What is the weirdest thing you have ever seen on the internet? The banal things people post on Facebook. It's an epidemic.

What is the weirdest thing your pet has ever done? Scout is delightfully rambunctious and also sweet and snuggly. We adore her! Weirdest thing she's ever done? Run circles around a foreign jogger on the beach, barking like crazy, while both Mark and I crawled around in the sand at the jogger's feet trying to get a hold of Scout to get her to stop while repeatedly apologizing to the man. Huh. Maybe that's the weirdest thing we've ever done.

What is the weirdest book you have ever read? The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. I am a proud geek, but on that one, I feel like I failed somehow. I just didn't get it. Like at all.

What is the weirdest blog you follow? If by weird, we mean awesome, then my friend bythelbs wins this prize.

I am going to tag Thing 2, my SIL Emily, and anyone else who'd like to do this. Have fun! :D

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Double Digits (Here We Go Again)

How is it possible . . .

. . . that our baby boy

. . . is TEN?!?!

(Thing 2's birthday was on the 3rd, but I'm just now getting pictures uploaded. Go me!)

We had a GREAT family day.
Breakfast in bed.
"Doubles" basket.
Lots of Wizard 101 with friends.
Lunch at a fun little cafe/bakery.
Shopping spree at the Yu-Gi-Oh!  and book stores.
Perfect Presents.
Skyping with friends.
An eclectic home-cooked meal (crab legs, beanie weenies, and artichokes).
Calls from grandparents, as well as time with Vavó here.
Dunkin' Donuts Munchkins "cake."

We all rang in the day at midnight, complete with baby book viewing.

Breakfast in bed with his best friend . . .

. . . and a little beggar staring at them.

Stacy had this fantastic idea to do a Doubles Basket when Thing 1 turned 10. It was one of the things that Thing 2 was most looking forward to.

See the picture above--everything is either "double" or "two" . . .
Double-Stuffed Oreos,
Double Fudge Ice Cream
Double Bubble,
Triple Double Stuf Mint Oreos
Double Vision,
Multiple Double Features,
2-Pack of Playing Cards,
and more!

Here are Thing 1 and Thing 2 after he opened her present to him.
(There are some SERIOUSLY sentimental feelings towards the Rubik's cube.)

These 2 are such great friends. We are lucky as parents to have two wonderful kids who love each other so much.

Happy Birthday, Thing 2!!
We LOVE you!

* * * * * * * * * *

(I wrote this before doing this birthday post. I decided to include it here.)

10 Reasons Our Son is Awesome

 Now that Thing 2 has reached double digits, he seems so much older to me. Well, he seems older and older every day, but somehow when I see his age as two digits it really hits home. Here are 10 reasons why our 10-year-old is awesome.

 1. He is always happy.
 2. His energy knows no bounds, kind of like Tigger.
3. He loves his big sister and gets along VERY well with her.
4. He is quick with a hug.
5. He always shows appreciation for even the most simple gestures.
6. He is a thoughtful friend.
7. He loves to make things special for other people. He is a thoughtful gift-giver.
8. He is brutally honest and forthright, and his tact improves every day.
9. He is extremely creative.
10. He treats his mother very well.

Thing 2, you are truly awesome! We love you!