Monday, January 30, 2012


I just realized that the Superbowl has not yet happened. I'm not a big sports fan, but I have some interest in this game because the competitors are the New England Patriots (where I grew up) and the New York Giants (where I currently live). I saw a cake at Whole Foods that was shaped like a football and said 1-23-12 in icing, so I assumed that was the date. I was wondering why no one was talking about the outcome on Facebook and why no one mentioned Madonna's halftime show.

So it's really February 5th. Just letting you know.

Saturday, January 28, 2012

An embarrassment of riches

Often I find myself scraping around for something to read, but in late January, several books came out and I got 4 free samples on my Kindle.

A Grown-Up Kind of Pretty by Joshilyn Jackson - terrible title, but seems like the usual intense, high-stakes Jackson story.

An Available Man by Hilma Wolitzer - Wolitzer is really similar to Cathleen Schine and Elinor Lipman. This looks like a light tale about a widower and his dating experiences after his wife's death.

The Odds by Stewart O'Nan - about a long-married couple who go gambling in Niagara Falls to try to save their marriage. Sprinkled with statistics, such as: "Odds of making it to your 25th anniversary: 1 in 6."

The Flight of Gemma Hardy by Margot Livesey. This seems like the weak link of the bunch. It's modeled on Jane Eyre, but set in the 1950s in Iceland and Scotland. I don't think Livesey is a bad writer, but imitating Jane Eyre is probably tough to pull off.

Friday, January 27, 2012

Quick recommendation

I just finished Gone with a Handsomer Man by Michael Lee West. What a fun book! Her novels always make me hungry - the characters are constantly whipping up red velvet cake, shortbread and cookies. This one had a surprise ending and there will be a sequel in April: A Teeny Bit of Trouble.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

So yesterday we got our first snow of the season. I used to really like snow, but I think last winter killed it for me a bit. We got so much dumped on us. But yesterday was not a bad day. Our friend A from college (he was my year, but now D knows him as well as I do) came into the city for lunch with us. I told him about a recent "pizza day" at E's school. A friend of mine volunteered to help and had a bad experience. The parents were kept out of the classrooms, not allowed to eat the pizza, and given a "death glare" if they did poke their heads in their child's class. D thought this was the lamest thing ever. Then A said, "Well, speaking from the other side of the divide, I can see where the teachers are coming from." He's been teaching since 1997. He explained that schools like to keep parents out of the class because if they are allowed inside, they inevitably judge the other children. This was news to me. As D pointed out, I think parents are more likely to judge the teachers. Still, it was interesting to hear the other side. I had thought the teachers were keeping the parents out because they found them disruptive.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

E is learning the states (D got him a map of the U.S. and put it up on his wall). He has some fun pronunciations: Vinga (Virginia), Alibamba (Alabama), etc. He also got a kick out of calling New York "New Mork" and adding a "New" to all the other states. He told me, "Alaska is on top" and "Canada is so cold."

Later, as I was getting him ready for school (and I wasn't saying anything), he said gently, "Don't yell, Mommy. Be very quiet. Do something quieter." It must be something they say at school. It made me laugh, and he grinned and said, "What did I say that was funny?"

It was one of Z's not-super nights (coupled with insomnia, because I slept well the night before), so I opted for some caffeine, in the form of hot chocolate from Brooklyn Bagel. It was fantastic. I also had some chopped watermelon, a favorite of E's.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Guilty pleasure

A friend of mine wrote that choosing clothes for a baby girl is "one of life's (guilty?) pleasures." It sure is. Having a boy is wonderful, but clothing-wise, you are limited to blue, grey, brown, black, etc. Having a girl means pink, pink, pink! All the pink you can stand, as another blogger put it. And my tolerance is high :)

I checked the average temperature of Orlando in February and decided that Z would need some short-sleeved onesies to wear. So I went to and got her a white eyelet sun hat, two pink skirts, a "smocked bubble", a white dress with red roses, a "popcorn sweater" coat (in pink, of course) and a little onesie that says "Chicks rock" (featuring an actual yellow chick, playing the guitar). Most of these items are for the summer, but a couple were in the 3-6 month size, should it get really hot in Orlando.

I don't know why it is so delightful to buy clothes for a little girl. But it is.

Friday, January 13, 2012


So D told me today that he got first class tickets for Orlando! I am absurdly excited. The only time I have ever flown first class was by accident. We were in Italy years ago and missed the flight back to the U.S. So we sat around the airport in Rome and eventually got on a flight to Dublin. In Dublin, I guess they felt bad for us because we had been sitting in an airport for hours, and they put us in first class. It was the lap of luxury. The seats were enormous and the food was really something else. They would bring out apple pie with ice cream, and later they brought out warm, melty chocolate chip cookies. It was actually more food than I could eat, but I appreciated it. So this will really take the edge off of flying with two small children :) D said it didn't cost much more, it guaranteed us seats together, and they won't charge for checked luggage. So, all in all, a good deal.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

So today was a good day. I woke up well rested. Z didn't sleep for 11 hours or anything, but she may have done 8 pm to 4 am, or 3 am; not sure which; and then we went back to sleep again. And woke up at 10 am. Heaven. I would have slept longer, but I knew I had a hairdresser appointment. That went well, too. Last time she screamed while I was getting my hair washed; this time I brought a babysitter with me and Z was good the whole time. My hairdresser is trying to quit smoking so I recommended a hypnotist to her; D went to him for a while, I forget for what, and it was successful.

Z is also not breastfeeding as frequently now, so I am able to give E more attention, which I like. He loves the High Line (an elevated park) and its "robot elevator" (they play songs with strange robotic voices; it's part of an installation about cyber culture).

Also we booked a trip. E has vacation from school in February and we are going to go to Disney World. It should be an adventure. I also like Florida, I always seem to relax there.

Sunday, January 01, 2012

Happy new year

So last night I had a good NYE. We went to a toddler party for the group of buildings we live in. It's a nice community with a lot of little kids. The couple who organized the party put together a good playlist. Z slept through the first part of the party. When she woke up, I walked around and bounced her to the music, and she was happy. E got in a minor scuffle over a truck (the boy who had it did not want to share), but he enjoyed dancing to Madonna (the only musician he would dance to, of the ones they played. He liked "Lucky Star."). Afterward, we got falafel and then we went to McDonald's because E likes their ice cream. A strange thing, though: whenever I ask for ice cream, the counter people don't know what I mean. You have to say "cone." E had a high old time putting dots of ice cream on his hair, nose, chin and fingertips. I wiped him down with a facecloth when we got home.

I had a good time at my mother's, too (over Christmas). She gave me a kit to make a quilt (a small one, called a prayer blanket). I am planning to do it sometime this year :)