Wednesday, November 28, 2007

They poop too much

The cat keeps going into the child's room. Neither cat likes this small, loud person, but she likes the kitties. Oh my. They are members of the family, and they are furry. Plus, they run. And she's into that.

So to torture us for bringing this loud raving lunatic into the house, the damn cats going into her room at night and meow loudly. This might wake her up.

Sleep has been such an issue that I debated punching a cat in the face more than a few times. We have gone weeks without more than 4 hours of sleep a night. She just starting sleeping right you loud, bad smell producing fur-balls whose shit I sift out of gravel. SHUT UP. I FED YOU ALREADY.

The alternative might be that they've started to like her. That, or they're binging her offerings. Several kitty toys have appeared in her room, mysteriously, overnight.

The cats used to bring offerings to the vacuum cleaner. I'm not sure if there's a connection there or not, but I suspect it has something to do with both volume and unpredictability. Either way, they best not wake the child. Or I will unleash her upon them.

Saturday, November 10, 2007

I'm not a talented story-teller. At least, not out loud. There seems to be a block between my brain and my ability to describe what's in it. There's also a block between my mouth and brain which causes me to say things, and those things I say? They get me looks. Looks. But I lack the accurate phrase to describe these looks, so I'll use J's. I say something, usually trying to make a joke, and these people look at me like I have "lobsters coming out of my ears." This look is most often partnered with either a nod or a confused look. On a really good day I get both.

J knows exactly what I am talking about. He gets looks, too.

I have no idea what I must sound like to normal people. Let's see...Vegan liberal who is self employed, hates the workings of corporations and large companies who are buying up our lives, is a pacifist that often uses the line "punch them in the face," practices Yoga, sews and reads blogs but doesn't watch TV. I belong to a Universal Unitarian Lay-Led Fellowship, I never shop at Wal-Mart, watch horror movies and spoofs of horror and science fiction movies all the time, and I have no idea what sports teams are playing. Did I mention I read celebrity gossip? I also read science fiction, some poetry from time to time, and child development books.

In short, most of our culture considers me a freak. But I think most of the people in our culture are raving imbeciles, so I don't care. I like the smart people I find. I like people who will consider, honestly, another point of view. If we have that, we can get along. Or at least we can agree to disagree.

But now, it is the weekend, and it's too nice a night for such heady stuff. I'm going to go watch anime and have a drink. See? Horrible story teller.

Friday, November 9, 2007

It's good for you

Right now I am forcing an infant to sleep by cuddling him on my lap all snuggled up in blankets. Truly I am a cruel, cruel person. Actually, I wish to lay him down, as he is a big ass baby and bits of me are falling asleep, but he snaps awake each time I try this maneuver. It's only his third day here, so by next week I should be able to lay him down and maybe use the bathroom while he naps. I hope I hope I hope...

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

It could be a Dylan song

The times, they are a'changin.

J works in the title department of a large home building company. It's not something he particularly enjoys, but unlike his last job, which was very cool but paid horribly and had hours that were sadistic, he can now enjoy evenings and weekends. As an added bonus we can afford to pay our mortgage and eat dinner out from time to time. There is also no required beer drinking with this soul sucking corporate job, which may sound like a con instead of a pro, but try being required to not only drink but also drive from location to location four to six days a week, and add in very little sleep, and pretty soon cool job is no longer cool, local celebrity non-withstanding.

I am the champion of digression.

Anyway, the company J works for is in round four or five of layoffs, which is no surprise given the current state of the housing market. My father also works for this company, and he's not only been in the mortgage banking industry for a long time, he's also really good at his job. He said it's going to get a lot worse before it gets better. (As an aside, my favorite quote is from Lily Tomlin - "It going to get much worse before it gets worse.") So we're in the same position as so many people right now...we're wondering if J is going to have a job much longer. If he loses his job it won't be because of his performance, or a mistake on his part. It will be because this company has to cut costs, and personnel are expensive. Yesterday the only competent person in a department J has to deal with often was laid off. People who are paid well, by and large, are paid well for a reason. But that also means that they are more expensive than the idiots, and tend to go first after all the really expendable people are cut.

J and I haven't really talked about what we'll do if he gets the axe. With the day care doing so well, and the fact that J loves kids and kids love him, we could change our licensing and have him join the business. It would mean some changes to our house, but we'd be together every day doing something we both love. Given the economy in general, this might be the most viable option. There's always the chance that J won't be the one to go this time.

I can't imagine working in that kind of atmosphere, however. Knowing someone has to go. And there are just enough people to do the work that needs done, so not only is someone you know fairly well going to lose their job, you're going to have to do their work, and you're already swamped.

I was in a similar position with my corporate job before I started my business, and I finally decided that the person who decided that you could operate a company with 1/6 of the original staff doing all the work, well, that person was an idiotic jackass. The human brain can only deal with so many tasks and so much information at one time. No matter what your spreadsheet and profit margin for the board says. So I left. I had a plan, I got some training, I did some research and took a huge chance, but I did it. I've never liked The Man.

But I've got to go... Perhaps I'll edit later?

Monday, November 5, 2007

Holy crap that was fast!

Last week I ordered some fabric from Sew, Mama, Sew! and hot damn, it came in the mail today! It even came with the pictured button, a little free goodie from the store. I loves me some free swag, you know. I think something as small as a button can sometimes make you feel like a special, important person. Actually, what makes me feel like a special, important person is that they got my super cool Russian doll fabric here fast. I appreciate this kind of service, and I'll order from them again.

The fabric is going to be used for the "Pleated Beauty Handbag" from "Bend The Rules Sewing." My mother in law is a nut for these little dolls, and she loves bags. Plus, she's getting her Masters (?) right now for education, which is being paid for by the school she teaches at. She works with kids with Autism Spectrum Disorder, and it's a job that is both very rewarding and very tough. It's also something this lady was meant to do, and those kids are lucky to have her. Mom in law has also had a pretty difficult couple of years, and I think this present, made just for her, will bring a smile to her face. I'll post pictures as soon as it's done!
So, that picture thing? That was way easier than I thought it would be. Shame on me for being so lazy. Then again, getting sleep on a regular basis makes one a little more motivated to do something other than grump and eat. SO! Here are some pictures I love. Just because I can!

Sunday, November 4, 2007

Hey! That was a hell of a lot easier than I expected. So this is my test...better photos coming soon! (My kid is wearing a dog costume and reading books. It's a favorite pastime.) Notice: my house has not been staged by a professional.

The night time is the right time

I am a gigantic dork.

I'm not going to pretend to be super hip, or cool, or really ahead of my time. I'm just a big geek who spent an entire eight hours yesterday without her child but with her mother, in Amish Country, on a mission to go to a fabric store run by people who speak Pennsylvania Dutch and don't wear buttons. We had a fucking FANTASTIC time, too. We visited a cheese factory where you could see the cows wandering about outside in a field, cows that were free to eat grass and lay under trees and shit in their choice of locations. It was crowded in the shop; there were at least 60 people lined up to walk slowly around the refrigerated bins and use a toothpick to sample tiny squares of cheese. There was an obviously non-Amish lady (unless there's a "You can wear tight black jeans and too much lipstick but only if you're the announcer on Saturday" rule I'm not aware of) with a pop-star type head set on who would herd you through the door.
"Shopping? To the right. Tasting? Back of the line please. Shopping only? To the right." Repeat! Again! She also had to drone on endlessly about how you "DO NOT PLACE THE TOOTHPICK IN YOUR MOUTH! USE YOUR HANDS TO REMOVE THE CHEESE FROM THE TOOTHPICK! IF YOU PUT YOUR TOOTHPICK IN YOUR MOUTH, THROW IT AWAY AND GET A NEW TOOTHPICK!" There were also signs to that effect every 3 feet. We had to shop around the slow moving, cheese-tasting herd of people. And I shit you not, there was peanut butter cheese. Who the hell thought that would be a good idea? I have a feeling it was along the lines of "How stupid to I think the English (Amish term for us worldly folks) are? I think they are so stupid they will even eat cheese mixed with peanut butter." And we do. It tastes like peanut butter fudge, but it still weirds me out. Unnatural cheese.

One of the reasons J and I became Vegan was factory farming, and the horrible way animals are treated in the industrial food producing system. Without getting preachy, we believe that all life has worth, and regardless our your carnivore/herbivore status, you should not be unnecessarily cruel to other living things. It's especially heinous if you are doing these things solely for a profit. That being said, I MISS CHEESE! It was the hardest thing for me to change about my eating habits, this cheese love o' mine. So the Amish cheese place? Heaven. The animals were treated well, no funky shit was added to them or their milk, and I get to eat the tasty, tasty results. Mmmmm...

So back to the fabric. It's awesome. My favorite fabric I found was the last yard and a half of what appears to be something like seed packet covers of flowers with 1920/1930's style illustrations of children on them. This description does the fabric no justice. Now I really need to get my ass in gear with the pictures. But there was a ton of beautiful stuff, and even though it wasn't handmade Amish fabric (as I had been lead to believe) it was still well worth the trip. Plus, I got to hang out with my mom. I would have gone just for that. See? Geek.

When we got home I finished a skirt before we ran out to meet my family for dinner. My sister is in town with her boyfriend for the weekend, and she and my parents agreed to take the child for the night so J and I could go to a Halloween party. Where everyone had to dress as their favorite video game character. (The GEEKY! The horror!) In my defense, I never really played video games. I preferred to read if I had free time. So I was the person every costume (except Tetris. I didn't live in a hole, just on a farm) had to be explained to. Our friends are nerds, too, and they went for some obscure stuff. Or maybe not, I have no idea. But Mario and Luigi weren't there, so by normal standards these characters may have been obscure. Again, I had no idea who the hell anyone else was supposed to be.

We've finally known our friends long enough that they've all become comfortable. Spending an evening with these people has become the social equivalent of putting on my favorite sweatshirt, and we had a really nice time. We stayed out until after 1 am, and I honestly don't remember the last time we were able to do that. This sleeping thing? It rocks. So does having an awesome, dork activity filled day. Now I'm going to get ready to give the service at our Unitarian Universalist Lay-led Fellowship. It's on chaos, and features "The Second Coming" by W.B. Yeats. There's no hope for me, I know. Please, if you have read all this, go do something cool. Save yourself! Or you, too, will end up discussing the various advantages of a self-threading machine vs. an old reliable one; lots of fancy stitches vs. button-holer. Run away!!