in which donuts are consumed

I’m out of coffee, so Ellison and I took a stroll and picked up a latte and some donuts. I love donuts. It’s not even the sugar – I really wish I could get raised donuts without any glaze. Then I would buy them by the flat and eat them for every meal of every day.

On second thought, maybe it’s best that I can’t get them.

I had an uneventful bout of online window shopping last night. For those who don’t know, online window shopping is much like actual window shopping, only in the comfort of your own bed. I am a huge proponent of activities which can be undertaken while snuggled under a blanket. I visited the Gap, where the denim pencil skirt I want so badly is still not on sale, and Old Navy, where it is inexplicably 1987, and 6pm.com, where the shoes are cheap but indexed so badly that you have to wade through twenty pages of bespangled mules to find a simple pair of flip-flops.

Despite adding several things to various carts, I didn’t buy anything until I got to Drugstore.com. Or, specifically, Beauty.com, which now shares a cart with Drugstore.com. I clicked over on a whim (and because the kid was sleeping on my chest, so what else was I going to do?) (digital illustration, shockingly enough, is v. difficult to do with one hand) and completely by accident stumbled on –

Well, here, let me give a little background: I’ve been searching for nail polish that is free from Formaldehyde, Toluene, and Dibutyl Phthalate ever since I got all weird and paranoid about chemicals (about the same time I switched out all my cleaning products for Method and Mrs. Meyer and Ecover) but it’s been just impossible to find. Which is weird, right? I live in Portland, for crying out loud; we’re practically the epicenter of the environmental movement. But, whatev. So I’ve been searching online, but aside from some weird water soluble (?) or peel-off (??) polishes, it’s been a big no-go.

BUT! When I clicked over to Beauty.com, I found butter LONDON 3 Free, which is not only all non-toxic, it’s British. I got some in Union Jack Black, Tramp Stamp, and Come to Bed Red. Will report back on final result, which I fully expect will be full of fabulousness.

The caffeine is finally hitting my bloodstream so I’m going into web design mode. Cheers, y’all.

above my means

Zen as I might be about socioeconomic status, there’s still a part of me that gets off on being able to Afford Things. Nice things. Things like my prettypretty BlackBerry Pearl or our multitude of Apple products. That part of me really, really wants to join this snooty athletic club that’s $100 a month and totally, completely impractical. But they totally offer childcare, and the idea of paying someone to watch my kid while I take a yoga class? Compelling. (See, because when I leave him with Not So for no reason except that there’s something I ‘want’ to do, I always feel guilty. Yes yes, I know, therapy would help with these things. But – another reason to feel guilty! You see my dilemma.)

big boy bedI’m starting to feel a little bit like our lives are getting managable, which – hey, there’s a reason I take meds, you know? When just getting out of bed in the morning seems huge and untenable, it’s kind of a big deal to think that things might actually be okay, kind of. It was cleaning the house that did it. We’ve got this great apartment that I love unreasonably (well, except for the permeating smell of Rice Junkies that greets me every morning), but it’s jammed so full of stuff that it might as well be a storage unit. But Not So went all MacGyver on the stuff in Ellison’s room this weekend, so not only is all our old crap hidden successfully in the closet, we finally got to assemble the kid’s toddler bed! And, dude, don’t even get me started on how exciting it is to think that someday in the possibly near future I may be able to sleep through the night again. In any position I want. I can barely contain my potential bliss.

Next step is to get our room whipped into shape. This is a bit more complicated than it sounds, since we’re waiting to be able to afford these cheap-but-cute wardrobes from Ikea so that I can stop keeping my clothes in a big ol’ Rubbermaid storage bin and actually explore the idea of drawers.

missing sync

pearlSo I got sick of my BlackBerry Pearl – which I still love unreasonably, by the way – not playing nicely with my Mac and downloaded the Missing Sync the other day. Oh my god, it is cool. My phone suddenly has this whole new level of functionality. I can upload! And download! Things are the same on my computer as they are on my phone. I have this weird computer organization fetish, so this fills me with glee.

Well, and I also geeked out and created thumbnail photo icons for all of my contacts (both on Highrise and in my Address Book), which – viola! – are now in my phone as well, so when people call me I see a friendly little picture of them on my screen. THIS IS SO COOL. (In a related note, yes, I am aware that I am an enormous geek.)

It also lets me easily download all the images from my phone’s camera, so now I have, like, a year’s worth of crappy snapshots to look through. The camera on my Pearl is kind of suck, which is fine – all cameraphones are kind of low-quality, right? – as long as I faithfully ignore photos taken with an iPhone. (The iPhone camera fills me with unattractive envy, so for my purposes it does not exist.)

I do like having a camera on my phone, though. It’s handy, and it makes me feel pleasantly tech-geeky, and I always have it with me, unlike the enormous Nikon which requires its own backpack. But I’m lazy about uploading images because (until now) I’ve had to do it over Bluetooth, which is somewhat lugubrious and effort-intensive. Seriously, only one picture at a time? Who has the attention span for that?

Now, though, I can transfer all my pictures at the same time I’m syncing my phone, so I just uploaded a bunch of badly-lit, poorly composed, out of date images to Flickr. YOU ARE SO HAPPY ABOUT THIS.

matt and ellison in the park mama and baby on the MAX library mama shoes self

So now I’ve got my phone syncing with my desktop, plus the revamped Google Mobile suite (gmail and maps on the go, whee!) which means my phone is, like, the coolest thing ever. I think I might need to make out with it for a little while.

if somewhat zaftig, at least well-dressed

My friend cleaned out her closets the other day and gave me all her fat clothes. As she is someone of impeccable style, this was somewhat like Christmas…albeit a depressing and demoralizing Christmas. So, just like Christmas!

Suddenly my closet contains more than just some skirts and a single, sad business suit that never really fit properly to begin with. I have pants! Pants, I tell you! And shirts! Shirts I can button over my massive chest-area!

Obviously I find this somewhat exciting.

As a result of this sudden clothes-having, I’ve been motivated to actually get dressed most mornings, and that means I am continually having to answer the question “What shoes will I wear with this?” Eagle-eyed readers will remember the sad, sad day last year when I realized none of my pre-pregnancy shoes would fit on my suddenly huge and plank-like feet*, which meant that several years’ worth of careful shoe-collecting and meticulous sale-scouring were all dumped unceremoniously in a large box in the storage closet. Since then I’ve managed to acquire a pair of sneakers (white) and a pair of warm boots, but aside from that? Not a whole lot.

After yesterday’s internet debacle, I decided to spend some quality time at Shoe Pavilion. I’ve been wanting some cute, sporty little Mary Jane-inspired flats, and they had them in spades…just not in my size. This is nothing new. Apparently those of us whose feet are size 9 and larger do not require such things as “shoes.”

However, I found myself being drawn to a section I rarely visit: the Dansko section. Dansko, in case you don’t know, makes a series of clunky, clog-like shoes that are rumored to be terribly comfortable, much like Birkenstocks, but like Birkenstocks, I have always given them a wide berth. I was a Goth, after all. Goths do not wear comfortable shoes. Granted, my current choice in footwear is an ancient pair of Ugg knock-offs, but still.

Dansko Mary JaneThe pair I kept coming back to was the least clog-like of the bunch; a cute, clunky Mary Jane. I’d walk by, check them out, walk away again. It was very single-girl-in-a-bar. “What’s a cute pair of Mary Janes doing in a place like this? Oh – you’re Dansko. Oh. Uh – go to any health-food stores lately? Ha, ha. I’m totally kidding. But, uh – did you?” I tried on some other shoes, but they were all just eh. I mean, if I had enough free cash to buy a new pair of shoes every couple of months, there were definitely some contenders…but since my footwear purchases are few and far between, I want to make the most of them. And the Danskos, they beckoned. Also, they were on sale for $45.

Long story short, I am now the owner of a pair of suspiciously clog-like Dansko Mary Janes. True to rumor, they are insanely comfortable, and with some stripey tights and a black dress might even pass as Gothy. Although given my current lifestyle, the health food store scenario? Somewhat more likely.

* It is only fair to note that my feet are actually a size 9 1/2, which was another unwelcome revelation but one I feel obligated to point out, lest anyone feel I should be building character by cramming my feet into my old shoes. A half size: maybe. A whole size? That’s way more character than I need.

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out and about

Guess where I’m posting? The office! We finally have internet access. You probably thought we had ironed that whole thing out a couple of months ago, and to that I can only say: so did we. Turns out, a roof mounted antenna? Doesn’t work so well when the building owners decide to redo the roof. But everything’s working gorgeously now, and I am a happy, happy girl. Our ISP, Stephouse Networks, has been just amazingly proactive and helpful during this whole process. I kind of want to bake them something. If you need DSL and you’re in the Portland area, that’s who I’d tell you to call.

Today was a fun, fun, exciting trip to the optometrist to make sure my contacts are working right (they are), followed by an impulse side-trip to Nordstrom to see if any of the bras that fit me were on sale (they weren’t). Wearing an enormous bra is not nearly as much fun as one might think. The styles available in a 38D can be described as “utilitarian” at best. Plus, almost all of them involve underwire. I used to wear underwire with no problem, but that was back when I was a B cup and could sashay into any lingerie section and choose my brassiere based on things like how cute it was and whether it gave me cleavage. Now, the massive weight of my breasts makes underwire press uncomfortably into my ribcage. Ah, lactating. How I do love it.

After that fortifying experience, Happy Fun Baby and I traipsed over to the office, where I spent the better part of two hours updating software. Now that everything is all current, I get the novel experience of being able to actually work. From work! It’s crazy, I know, but it just might catch on.

The next step in the evolution of the office: acquire seating, preferably of the “mod futon” variety. Right now Happy Fun Baby is crashed out on my lap, drooling gently onto my shirt. I’d like to be able to set him down every now and again. Just for kicks. You know.

Our office kind of rocks, even if there’s not really anything in it except a desk and a bunch of books. What more do you need, really?

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my kind of fairy

At 11 months (well, almost), Happy Fun Baby’s vocabulary is at a whopping four words: “ghee” for “kitty,” “luh” for “love,” “ba” for “ball” and “da” for “yeah.” “Do you want to go downstairs?” I ask. “Da,” says the baby. It’s like living with a little Russian diplomat.

I’m pretty sure yesterday (and today)’s crying jags are tooth-related. A couple of times today the baby has, apropos of nothing, put his hands to his mouth and wailed. I feel so bad for him, but I don’t know what I can do aside from offering snuggles and the occasional dose of Tylenol, which he sucks down like a little addict. Do you remember when medicine tasted bad? This cherry-flavored baby crack is not exactly off-putting. On the other hand, do I want to wrestle with my child before he will take his painkillers? No I do not.

The Code Fairy (aka my inimitable husband, who loves it when I call him a fairy) performed some sort of magic on my Buzzverb site and now it works gorgeously. I’ve posted the second of my 30 Days of Writing Links: if you’re doing NaNoWriMo (or even if you’re not) you should check it out. I’m not collecting all these links for my health, people.

I’m not doing NaNoWriMo this year (seriously, where would I find the time?) but I am all enamoured of a new manuscripting application. I downloaded the Scrivener beta yesterday, and it is, in fact, all that and a bag of chips. If you write novels, you know that Word is somewhat lacking in its outlining capabilities; I’ve always needed to either print out my notes and ideas so that I can refer to them while writing or have lots of windows open, neither of which is an optimal solution. And changing the order of chapters? Not exactly painless. Scrivener addresses these concerns and more. I’m digging the hell out of it. I may even do some work on the novel I started a couple of years ago and then abandoned in favor of sleep deprivation and mood swings. Er, I mean, parenthood. Stranger things have happened, you know.

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sleep dep and surprises

The baby woke up at 8am and spent the morning in a series of meltdowns. He’s begun stomping his feet when he’s angry or frustrated. It’s incredibly cute and incredibly endearing and doesn’t he need to be a little older before temper tantrums come into play?

About an hour ago he stopped crying long enough to nurse and then fell fast asleep. It’s no wonder he’s tired; he was up all last night doing the back-arch crying routine. I’d guess what was bothering him (teeth? sinuses? dreams?) but at this point it seems almost silly, like when I talk for my cat. “I hate it when you talk for me,” says Nick. See?

If I were clever I’d take this scream-free moment to do some housework, but I am not clever. I am also not fed. My fortifying lunch of chips and salsa did not completely fortify me. I know, I’m shocked too.

Apparently Last.fm introduced a bunch of new features today, not that I’d know from the lack of announcement. You’d think that announcing things would be important, wouldn’t you? There’s a space for events now, which I guess is exciting, but the thing that made me squee was the Taste-o-meter, which measures your “musical compatibility” with your friends. Kitschy? Yes. But so widget-tastic!

I checked my MySpace account today (yes, I know, I don’t know why either) and found the most unexpected message ever in my inbox:

I went to high school with you, and I always thought you were a great girl. Sorry if I didn’t say that to you back then. You have a gorgeous family, and I hope you are as happy as you look in your pictures!

Wow. She was one of the popular kids, too. Neat!

Speaking of neat: my pet project, Buzzverb, launched today. There was about as much fanfare as you’d expect for something no one’s heard of. Excitingly, once the site went live I discovered a fun little quirk wherein the first entry on the front page is posted with the formatting stripped. Which…doesn’t so much work for me, seeing as formatting is sort of important. There is a place to tell the theme not to do that, but it is feeling peevish and refuses to play. I went to the theme’s forums to see if I could find help, but – wouldn’t you know it? – the forums are down today. So, bah. But hey, if you or anyone you know needs a copywriter, check out Buzzverb. And pretend it works.

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