Thursday, May 29, 2008


The right way to do adult music with children's programming:

And the wrong, not-for-the-easily-offended (but still sorta funny) way:


Tuesday, May 27, 2008

What I'd Wear Wednesday: T-shirt dress

What I'd wear today if I could: a simple T-shirt dress.

Except it's really not that simple.

Six full months of hot, rainy weather -- also known as hurricane season around these parts -- stretch out in front of me like a sentence, and a T-shirt dress seems to me today to be a great answer. It's easy (slip it over your head and add shoes) and cooling.

However, I couldn't find a decent T-shirt dress photo to post here. The T-shirt dresses I found were too short, had illustrations of wildlife on them (what's up with that?), were too tight or too loose. The famous Victoria's Secret T-shirt dress has snaps down the front, which, well, that's not really a T-shirt anymore, is it? The image I did post here -- no model, no frills, you can use your imagination -- was taken from a UK site that indicated two sizes were already sold out on this dress.

I say British women have the right idea, if this dress is selling out.

Anyway, am I hopelessly out of touch, wanting a T-shirt dress? Have these dresses been relegated only to be beach coverups these days?


Monday, May 26, 2008

Magnetic Monday

Friend Guinevere and I are planning to post Magnetic Poetry creations every Monday. Feel free to play along! You can get these word magnet kits at many bookstores. Maybe you already have Magnetic Poetry -- show off your creations and let one of us know.




Friday, May 23, 2008

Fertile ground

I have made it known to anyone and everyone how much I would love to have another baby. I don't know why I feel so free this time around about sharing my reproductive hopes. It certainly is a conversation starter.

My friend Roo said to me, "You have the first baby for yourself and the second baby for the first baby." At first I thought, Hmm, maybe, but now I don't think so. Part of the reason I think I want another child is I miss Fly's baby days. I want to savor that little-babyness. As a first-time parent, adrenaline would keep me up 20 hours of the day, and I was dizzy from doing things for Fly and learning how to take care of a baby around the clock. I feel -- I hope -- the second time around, I'll be used to all of that doing and I can take more time to just appreciate the miraculous joy bundle. Of course, I would love for Fly to grow up with a sibling, but I also want the baby for me.

So I was interested in reviewing The Tao of Fertility: A Healing Chinese Medicine Program to Prepare Body, Mind and Spirit for New Life for the Parent Bloggers Network. Written by a doctor who specializes in using Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) to help women overcome infertility, the book in general recommends overall health as a way to prepare the body for growing a baby. I don't have infertility issues -- at least not that I know of -- but I enjoyed reading what author Dr. Daosing Ni had to say about fertility and health. Throughout the book, Ni illustrates what TCM has done for women trying to have a baby. These individual women's stories are at times frustrating and heartbreaking. Many turned to "Dr. Dao" as a last resort, after years of trying everything else. Most of them found success with his regimen of healthy diet, moderate exercise, stress reduction -- all common sense -- but also herbs and acupuncture.

Although I don't share the same problems as the women in the book, I do share one important commonality: age. It's harder to conceive after 35. It seemed all of Dr. Dao's patients were in their 30s and 40s. He has good news about this -- well, it seemed like good news to me -- that good health has a positive effect on your eggs. Even a twentysomething can damage her fertility with an unhealthy lifestyle, he points out.

The Tao of Fertility includes a questionnaire to find your "fertility map," a 28-day fertility program featuring a healthy diet (with recipes!) and self-acupressure, a discussion of how acupuncture works and a special section on specific infertility problems.

If the recommended six months go by and I am still not pregnant -- some women do experience secondary infertility -- I would certainly look at TCM as one of my options. In the meantime, after reading this book, I'm definitely going to try to eat better and invest more energy into my overall health.

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Thursday, May 22, 2008

Tumbleweed of memories

I have been known to make baby blankets. I am not the best at sewing. I can't call myself a quilter. But I enjoy it.

Since my brother and sister-in-law added an adorable Guatemalan boy to their international family, I have yet to make him a blanket. I have been shying away from my sewing machine. Not only that, but I wanted to give him a blanket that matches his heritage the way I made a blanket that matches his older sister's Chinese heritage. I couldn't find any Central American-looking fabric. I fell in love with a Noah's ark-themed bolt recently, though, and knew it would be perfect for him.

Looking at the fabric, I knew I needed a soft blue thread to put into the machine so the color of the stitches would match. I took out the bobbin in my machine to roll new thread onto it. But the bobbin was full. I started unrolling the old thread. Magenta came off -- a quick bag JP wanted me to make to hold a tool of his. I had to pull out the white -- was that Fly's baptism outfit? Pale green -- part of the quilt I made for him? Slate blue -- I can't remember; I don't wear that color. Navy -- gosh, was that the tiered camisole I made for our trip to Naples before Fly? Each thread rolled off the bobbin and I took a little trip back in time, thinking about how my projects have linked themselves sentimentally to my past. Even though my projects have ranged from laughable to passable, I have spent considerable time at the sewing machine, thinking and dreaming as the needle went up and down.

Left with this tumbleweed of memories, I was glad for the time spent sewing -- on the surface nothing more than putting together pieces of fabric with string -- but actually a time capsule of our needs, wants, celebrations and our lives.

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Wednesday, May 21, 2008

What I'd Wear Wednesday: Simple and cool

What I'd wear today if I could (and I probably will): clothes for near-100-degree weather! My summer uniform is basically a simple tank top in a vibrant color like this one from Gap (with plenty of sunscreen on my arms and freckle-dotted shoulders, of course) and a pair of shorts. Sometimes, I wear a basic white tank too.

And I'd pair it with my current favorite bottom -- um, you know what I mean -- a pair of slim-fit long shorts, like these, also from the Gap:

When you're carrying a 30-pound toddler who also is sweating in the heat, a mama's got to stay cool!


Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Please send ice

It's 95 degrees. The Weather Channel says it feels like 97.

I think I might have gotten skin cancer today while playing outside with Fly.

Global warming is REAL.


Friday, May 16, 2008

Just plain cute

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Thursday, May 15, 2008

Rookie moms make good

It's not every day that a mom blogger turns her blog into a book -- a real, on-the-bookstore-shelf published book. Heather Gibbs Flett and Whitney Moss of Rookie Moms -- a blog I've been reading for a good while now -- have done just that! When "one of us" gets a big name, that's a cause for celebration. So....

All hail the Rookie Moms! Way to go!

Their book, The Rookie Mom's Handbook: 250 Activities to Do with (And Without!) Your Baby includes many of the tips they came up with for their blog, but also some new ones. Taking moms from birth through the first year, this book gives great ideas of just what to do with that wee one. Reading through the book (I read every page!), it really took me back to when Fly was two months old, seven months old, 11 months old.... And the tips were all right on, as I remember.

In fact, it was one of the Rookie Moms' tips from their blog, which I also found in the handbook, that helped me start to get over the anxiety of being a new mom: Tip #79, do the thing that you're afraid to do. They suggest identifying what you're afraid of, then trying to overcome it. I really wish I could remember what it was that was holding me back, but I don't have a great story. All I know is that I took their advice, and now I've forgotten what it was I was so anxious about with Fly! See how much Heather and Whitney have helped me?

I also love tip #156, to paint over any board books you may have received as a gift for your child and make up your own story. I wish I had thought of that one!

The Rookie Mom's Handbook is full of good tips like that. One tip encourages nursing moms to think with their breasts and go ahead and order that item on the menu when they get a tingly feeling. Another tip encourages moms to stay hip with current music. There are tips on baby massage, daddy time, preserving memories of your baby in various crafty ways, and even hosting parties. This book really should be the best new baby shower "it" book!

I was lucky enough to not only get a review copy of the book, but also an extra, so I'd love to give it away to a Rookie Mom or someone who knows a Rookie Mom. Please leave a comment saying you'd like to win the book, and I'll pick a name at random early next week. UPDATE: The die roller came up seven, and Kristi at Interrupted Wanderlust was commenter #7, so she wins! Although as a soon-to-be-mother of three (it's twins!) and Fly's future mom-in-law, I doubt she could be called a rookie. Congrats, Kristi!

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Wednesday, May 14, 2008

What I'd Wear Wednesday: Designer duds

Oh no.

For half the day yesterday, I thought it was Tuesday. But it was Wednesday.

As in What I'd Wear Wednesday.

You know when I realized what day I had missed? At about 1 o'clock this morning.

Because of the marvels of technology, though, I can make this post look as though I wrote it on Wednesday like a good little blogger.

What I'd wear today if I could: something by designer Nanette Lepore. Her stuff is always so feminine, but not over the top. At first I found this halter and loved it:

But then I noticed this dress I love is also by Nanette Lepore:

(I'd wear a little cami underneath because I like to be a bit more modest.)

Thanks to places like and eBay, it's easier to find designer clothes on the cheap. Not that I'm a big designer shopper! I'm just sayin'.


Thursday, May 08, 2008

Take my picture, please!

I love taking snapshots of family and friends and occasionally putting pictures into digital scrapbooking layouts.

Most of the layouts are of Fly, or Fly and JP

Before Fly was born, I created annual DVD slideshows of all the best pictures JP or I took that year, often from our travels.

The northern shore of St. Croix, overlooking Buck Island National Wildlife Refuge

The problem is that even though JP is the one with the photographic expertise and the big cameras, JP doesn't tend to take a lot of pictures of Fly and me together. Fly's album is going to be full of pictures of him and his dad, and very few with me. And that really bugs me, because I spend the most time with him. But also, of course, that's why there are fewer pictures of Fly and me together.

Oh, there are some pictures:

We look so happy in this picture!

"Who are those people, Mama?" "Oh, just other people at the museum." (Get out of my picture, people!)

Showing off our tongues, with a waiter's behind as our backdrop

This one is actually decent, but it was taken five months ago

So, looking forward to Mother's Day, what I would like to have is not a cheesy bottle of perfume or some rocks on a string (aka diamond necklace), but a resolution from JP that he will take more and better pictures of me and my boy together.

The Parent Bloggers Network is asking how moms would like to be recognized on Mother's Day, and you know what I want? Some decent pictures. Please. PBN is partnering with Johnson's Baby Cause program, which promotes health for children and mothers around the world, for this blog blast.

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Wednesday, May 07, 2008

20 months

Anyone have one of these?

Fly is 20 months old today! I don't know how that happened.

He can say about 30 words and knows the alphabet to E. He gives me kisses and hugs. He has used his potty six times.

And ... thankfully ... he is taking a nap!


What I'd Wear Wednesday: Mine! Hers!

What I'd wear today if I could: this tunic from New York and Co., which I bought today. So I guess I can wear it! I don't have to wish today!

My friend Star/Guinevere turned me on to New York and Co. It's one of her favorite stores. I thought I'd go in to look for a Mother's Day gift for JP's mom, and found a whole outfit for her ... and this for me. It was on sale, after all. It's a tunic in a chic brown and white print. Today, I'd wear it as a dress just for kicking around in. (Who says a dress has to mean dressy?) But I'd also wear it with a pair of white pants. I think this is also crying out for a long necklace.

Have you ever started shopping somewhere because of a friend?

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Tuesday, May 06, 2008

No rest for the weary

I am trying not to flip out.

Fly, the great non-sleeping child, seems to be giving up his nap.

Never mind that his buddies are still taking two naps a day.

Desperate for some answers, I found this article at Imperfect Parent. This poor woman definitely had it worse. The conclusion she eventually reached was to accept that her child was going to sleep whenever he felt like it, and not sleep when he didn't -- even if it was 3 a.m. She got tired of his not sleeping being an issue. So she made peace with it.

I am not sure I can come to that same mind set.

But I suppose it's better than the mental-breakdown alternative . . . .

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Thursday, May 01, 2008

Funky inner hair color?

Oh, believe me, it's getting there, especially after the past several days I've had (which is why I haven't been commenting) . . . .

Your Hair Should Be White

Classy, stylish, and eloquent.

You've got a way about you that floors everyone you meet.