Friday, April 30, 2010

The boys, again (finally) and photos

So much navel gazing lately. So now some actual news:

TZ took his first swimming lesson of the season this Tuesday. It was a private lesson at this little swim and tennis club (long story). We'd tried three times this past month to start lessons, but the first time, I got the time wrong, the second time, the teacher got the time wrong, and the third time RT got the time wrong--every time, we'd get there, get the chronically nervous TZ all psyched up, and find out that there would be no lesson.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

I'm good enough, I'm smart enough, and doggonit, people like me.

My "get happy" post from yesterday called to mind Stuart Smalley, Al Franken's "not a licensed therapist" from SNL, particularly the sketch with Michael Jordan, one of my favorite SNL sketches of all time.

It's so easy to make fun of the whole mindfulness/overcome-the-inner-critic thing, which is why I was so wary of BFW and its pop-culture Buddhism vibe to begin with. But it rings true, doesn't it?

Wednesday, April 28, 2010


Sometimes it just feels like the universe has lost its patience with my dense, tense self, and has exchanged gentle, whispered hints for a giant megaphone. Or maybe I got the first (broad) hint and that opened me to the others. Or maybe it's that "Oh, now I get it!" phenomenon.

Whatever it is, it started with the Birthing From Within workshop, about which I was previously so apprehensive. Turns out it was illuminating. A little New Age-y, but in a good way. The theme, around which almost everything circled, was that in order to be of any help to anyone, we must approach them with nothing--nothing--but compassion and curiosity about who they are and what will help. Which is hard, because we often think we know.

Also, to do this well, it means first looking at ourselves that way. And we tend not to be curious or compassionate towards ourselves--in fact, we are often just the opposite. And if we are curious and compassionate regarding ourselves, we will be able to embrace whatever ugliness we think we harbor, gently put it away, and remember that we better and stronger than we think. The way God would, as my mom would want me to point out. (By the way, Mom, don't worry--I'm not joining a cult.)

Thursday, April 22, 2010

They're heeeere....

The following is an approximation of an exchange that RT had with a colleague at work last week:

Colleague: ...was in Washington D.C. for work...April 15...went to the big Tea Party, amazing! Blah, blah, blah, taxes, Obama, socialist, etc. So, what to you think, RT?
RT:  Oh. Well...I'm a registered Democrat, so you may not want to hear what I think.
C: What?! And I had such great respect for you! I just don't get it. I'll be you believe in global warming, too, huh?
RT: Um, yes.

Predictably, the colleague believes it is all a grand hoax, or at the very least a serious mistake on the part of thousands of scientists the world over.

I know those people are out there, but it never fails to shock me when I actually hear of one of them. The scary thing is, their numbers are growing. And I'm sure that this book and its media coverage won't help. Written by a media meteorologist who doesn't trust the media. Go figure.

P.S. Sorry to be such a downer on Earth Day. Go recycle something. You'll feel better.

Monday, April 19, 2010

30 Days of The Good Life: Day One

I have been getting fatter and fatter lately, and it occurred to me last week, not for the first time, that if I ate the diet I (try to) enforce for my kids, I could probably lose five pounds. I would also feel less like a hypocrite, shooing the boys out of the kitchen so I can cram another handful of chocolate chips into my mouth.

Then I thought that if I consistently did all of the things that I urge my kids to do, I would eat healthier, sleep more, be kinder to everyone, and grow up.

When I began listing all of the behaviors and attitudes I demand of them, I realized why I'm such a hypocrite: no one can do and be all of those things, except maybe Jesus or the Buddha. But that doesn't mean we can't try. So I decided to try--really try--for thirty days to see how well I can live up to my impossible expectations for the boys. If I make it, I should be healthier and happier and closer to enlightenment, right? If I don't, well, I'll just lighten up on all of us.

So without further ado:
For thirty days henceforth, I will live like this:

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Why I love living in CA (some show-off photos)

It's expensive to live here, and the budget is a mess, but here's what we did on a couple of our weekends this past month:

Beach fun on March 28, at Sea Cliff in Capitola, CA:

Two weeks later, in Truckee, CA:

Kinda hard to beat.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

The Mompetition

Inspired by a Juicebox Jungle video about parents who brag about their genius children:

More parenting videos on JuiceBoxJungle

What's even worse, possibly, is the mom who brags about herself. We all know that the Mommy Code strictly prohibits telling other moms that you're consistently great at parenting. Sharing tips, okay. Sharing a moment of brilliance, fine. But the Code requires that we temper these stories with a Bad Mommy story, or at least an observation about how hard it is to be a parent. Common courtesy, right? And yet...

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

P.S. to Easter Bunnies/tummyaches post

I forgot to mention that M, the kid who punched TZ and makes fun of the boy with the learning disability, is also the kid who went around at Christmastime telling everyone that there was no Santa Claus. You have to feel sorry for him.

Monday, April 5, 2010


TZ ran away from home shortly before dinner this evening. Not sure what inspired it. But he packed his backpack with his Easter candy, an apple, two oranges (I'll need some healthy food, he said), several books, his lightsaber, his favorite stuffed animal and blanket, and a flashlight. He asked for my wallet, but I refused. His trusty sidekick K offered to go with him, so TZ packed K's Easter candy as well.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Easter bunnies and Tummy-aches

Poor K woke up feeling so icky this morning that he didn't want to get out of his crib. Even when TZ framed it as, "Hey, K, do you want to go and look for candy with me?" my poor baby could only mumble miserably, "I'm too sick." So we knew he wasn't faking it. After three more hours of sleep, he woke up, had a waffle, and was almost his usual self for the rest of the day.

I myself am feeling not-so-great after a day of stuffing Easter chocolates into my mouth when the kids weren't looking.

And finally, it turns out that my firstborn has been up to quite a lot during the weeks leading up to Easter: