Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Mister Rogers' Garden (Needs to Grow)

I have, over the past week, watched this video so many times that the song is now pretty thoroughly stuck in my head.  I have no problem with this at all.

Mister Rogers "Garden of Your Mind" remix

What I do have a bit of a problem with, now, is the apparent reality that there are not enough Mister Rogers episodes out on DVD.  Really do not understand this.  Also, I NEED FULL SEASONS.  I have no idea why they wouldn't be already out.  Surely it wouldn't be the same as with Sesame Street, where apparently they let all the song composers and such keep the rights to each bit they did, so then for DVD they have to go tracking everybody down to get a complete episode's worth of stuff.

We need more Sesame Street too, for that matter.  Have you seen many kid shows of the present day, and how they just are nowhere near the quality of these two old-school items?  Or am I just old now?


Sunday, March 25, 2012

Overthinking "Dinosaur Train," part 1

A staple of Una's television viewing, the PBS cartoon Dinosaur Train (by the Jim Henson Co) annoyed me at first, but it has grown on me and now I rather like it. It won me over partly with little things, like the fact that many of the dinosaur species have accents and other personality quirks based on where they were discovered (the Iguanadon likes to do Monty Python silly walks), partly with enjoyable songs, and partly with good character development. But there are still a few nagging questions, from a world-building perspective, that I can't help wondering about.

Most obvious is the question: whence the time-travel technology? The Troodons like to brag about how smart they are, but I don't see that they've come up with many non-train-related inventions. One suspects that someone else supplied them with time-travel capability. "Aliens" might be the obvious answer, although the question then becomes "why would the aliens bother doing that?" I have another theory, though. Whom do we know of who (a) knows of time travel, (b) has a family that includes two young children, who very commonly love anything to do with dinosaurs, (c) might do any nutty-seeming thing on a whim, and (d) was last seen operating a time machine in the shape of a (flying) train?

Doc Brown, of course.

Arguing against this hypothesis is Doc Brown's usually scrupulous concern about messing up the space-time continuum. Giving dinosaurs technology would seem to be a rather large disruption. But this actually dovetails with another nagging question: why does the Dinosaur Train only travel within the Mesozoic Era (the age of dinosaurs)? Perhaps Doc Brown rationalized that as long as the dinosaurs could only travel within their own era, and not use the train to escape their ultimate fate, all would be well. Presumably he made sure to keep his explanations to the Troodons limited to practical operating instructions, without getting into actual time-travel theory. As far as we can tell, this seems to have worked.

Saturday, October 08, 2011

leo rabbit with sheep ascendant

So yes, we have a second daughter, to be known here as Deuce unless I think of a better pseudonym. She is now on the verge of two months old. Here is one of the hospital photos:



Here is a more recent one:



I think she's going to be pretty darn cute as well, says the doting mommy.

Friday, October 07, 2011

Conversation with Breakfast: a short play by Una

[Una takes a bite of toast.]
TOAST: Ow! You bit my bottom! Wah! Wah!
[Bacon approaches Toast.]
BACON: What's wrong?
TOAST: She bit my bottom. Wah!
BACON: I'm your mommy. I will help you.
[Bacon kisses Toast.] Mwah!
BACON: All better.
TOAST: Thank you Mommy.

Friday, August 05, 2011

eventful

So, our first daughter was born at the beginning of October 2008, and our second daughter is due to be born next week. It appears that the impending birth of a child to M and I has some correlation to stock market crashes and general economic turmoil. I'm not sure why we shake the world in this way, but my apologies to your investment portfolios.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Into the third trimester

Hm. It's been over three months. I really ought to post something.

Over the past week I seem to be getting more than the usual number of "My, you're big! How far along?" comments. I didn't think there'd been a super drastic change, but of course when one is oneself all the time, slow changes can go unnoticed. I'm due in August, so I'm officially in the third trimester by now; it only gets more waddly and awkward from here.

Deuce (as I shall call her here unless/until thinking of a better pseudonym) has also begun squirming in more uncomfortable ways. She hasn't picked a favorite rib yet, like Una enjoyed pushing against for the last month or two, but I think it's only a matter of time for her to grow up enough to reach that far. Last night she just felt like pushing straight out a bit starboard of my belly button, as hard as she could. Which is getting to be pretty dang hard. also, ow.

I am happy to be pregnant. I wish to be pregnant for exactly as long as I ought to be. But I will be really really happy to be done with it.

PS: yes, apparently another girl. Sisters! Ability to reuse all pink and girly apparel! Cuteness!

Monday, February 14, 2011

missing

I went back and forth a bit about whether to put this out online. I've decided to go with it for a couple of reasons. The primary one is that the subject is something that seems like it may happen to people more than may be apparent -- it's not a casual conversation, so you often don't know that you don't know. In my case, feeling a bit lonely and apart from the world for a while when it happened, learning that I was not maybe as singular as I felt was comforting. (I wasn't completely lonely anyway; I had M and especially Una, ...but.) A secondary reason was that I had started to tell some people, notably at my high school reunion last summer, that I was pregnant. Anyone remembering that bit of information amid the whirl of talk and smiling faces might eventually start to wonder what was happening with that.

What happened, about a week after the reunion, was that I had a miscarriage, at about 11 weeks along.

It wasn't completely unexpected. I'd gone to the ER with some bleeding on July 13, a month to the day beforehand. Diagnosis: subchorionic hematoma, which means bleeding where the placenta attaches to the uterine wall. Often, apparently, it goes away on its own, but sometimes it doesn't, the placenta slowly detaches, and there is not really anything anyone can do about it except for me to rest as much as possible and not lift anything heavy, like a 1-year-old daughter.

It was a bit reckless to tell people I was pregnant with this hanging over me, especially since bleeding had continued now and then, off and on, but I think it was partly an attempt at magical thinking: if I say it, it will work out. But: no.

I'm OK now, and have been for most of the time since. Certainly physically: the doctor did not seem at all concerned about future possibilities. No one appears to know what causes subchorionic hematomas; they just happen sometimes. No indication of any underlying difficulty. It was also very helpful to already have Una, and know for sure that my body is capable of doing this thing.

Every now and then I do still think about the person who briefly could have been. It was not far enough along for us to know whether "he" or "she". I wish we'd gotten the chance to know that person...

...except, I'm pregnant again, due in August, and I'm now entering the second trimester with no apparent problems so far. Now, if all goes according to hope, we will get our "second" child, and this one would almost certainly never have existed if the other had survived. Once this one (whose pseudonym here will probably be Deuce) arrives, we will be so glad to have him or her, and not be able to imagine life without. But we will still visit the burial place, and tell Una and future child(ren) of the existence of the missing one.

There is a name we use. But that, I am going to keep between us.

Monday, January 24, 2011

a bit of space

This last Saturday was the opening/dedication of a brand new little park nearby, called Seaside Heroes Park. I'd heard (mostly read, in the local paper) they were going to build it, in a smallish space that had been a vacant lot through all my memory: an unused right-of-way/drainage ditch that follows the line of Lomita Boulevard west a block-plus after Lomita ends at Anza Avenue. The park occupies the space there between Anza and the next street over. Since the only place we needed to go this morning was Trader Joe's, Una and I had a little time to drop by and check it out.



I was specially curious because of who the park is named for: three locals killed in Afghanistan and Iraq in 2006-2007. I knew one of them, Matthew Ferrara, not as well as my father and brother did, whose Boy Scout troop he was in, but I knew him (and wrote about him and his family and his funeral here). An older lady walking her little dog arrived the same time we did, and we both paused to read the tiled wall. She noted that her son had gone to school with Joe Anzack Sr, the father of one of the other honorees. I noted my connection to Matt Ferrara.




It is a remarkably wonderful little park. I was pleased by the design of a curving pavingstone path between the two entrances, flanked by curving swaths of lawn and one small rubber-padded play area with a few things to climb on, up, and under, suitable for kids as young as Una (with a bit of handholding).




She seemed to approve too; she liked climbing and running around, and didn't want to leave.


I am glad they built it. I am sorry the reasons for the dedication exist. But it is a place with a good cozy feeling to it. We will be back again.

Monday, January 10, 2011

a wrinkle in time

This resolution business is a bit more difficult when the bambina does not nap for two days in a row. Should have done it on the weekend, yeah yeah.

I was interested in the news item that a Cornell psych prof emeritus might have found some slight evidence of ESP. Sadly, another article in the NY Times seems to explain that what is often considered statistically significant may actually not be. Which deflates the situation somewhat.

I consider myself a person of science. But I like to be open-minded about things when it seems possible. I don't think any of the really fancy ESP things that make for fun stories are very likely, or we would have seen more evidence of it by now. But I can't help wondering about little hard-to-quantify things, feelings that I have once in a while, a few stories I've heard from other people.

Okay. I can't help wondering if sometimes I'm feeling emotional echoes in my timestream of future incidents. It's never been much use, because it's not like an actual message or anything, just a feeling that "this is going to have been important later" or something like that. Once or twice I've tried to kind of feel ahead this way, trying to figure out "is this going to be bad/good" and see if I can get any sort of hint about it. I've also had a few instances where I get deja vu and was pretty sure I'd dreamed the moment previously. Never anything important; the example I was surest about was simply a moment rummaging in a co-op pantry with a friend in college, when I had not ever been to that co-op before.

Nothing I can really distinguish from normal pondering and worrying, if I really am strict with myself. And one would only notice situations that did turn out to be interesting later, after all. Mere pattern recognition going too far. Probably. Of course.

It's just kind of hard to prove a negative, innit? And more fun to think of unusual possibilities. Just in case...

This is not turning out to be a very good post. I apologize. The end of Monday approacheth and I need sleep. I'll get more of a running start for next week. ... I think?

Monday, January 03, 2011

in which a resolution is made

I've been blogging, off and on, and off, since October 23, 2000, which I am pretty sure is before the term "blogging" was commonplace, if it even existed. But consistency has always been a problem. It's acted more or less as my online diary, available to be read by anyone coming across it but most likely simply by family/friends. Which is fine. And that doesn't HAVE to change. But even just for me, I want to try to be more consistent about writing actual pieces. So I am 2011-resolving to do it.

The Goal: every Monday, to post a reasonably long (ie, not just a few lines) entry on some actual topic.

Aiming to post it Mondays will in theory give me time for my procrastinating self to write it the preceding weekends. We shall see how this works. This is going to have to count for today's/this week's, because I just now thought of it (provoked partly by my cousin's related resolution) and baby's naptime will be over soon. But by next week, yeah! Multiple paragraphs! Possibly thoughtfulness! Woo!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

brought to you by the number 2

C is for cookie, that's good enough for me
C is for cookie, that's good enough for me
C is for cookie, that's good enough for me, OH!
cookie, cookie, cookie starts with C

Tuesday, July 06, 2010

this is the toy i'm looking for

I am writing this entry on my new Droid. This makes me happy, now that it's not giving me all caps like a moment ago. I want to figure out what I accidentally hit to make it do that.

In other news, the weather here, two days after July 4th, is cold and even, this morning, damp. This is unacceptable. We have obviously been assigned someone else's weather by mistake, again. I hope this mistake is rectified soon.

Otherwise, we're all fine, here. How are you?

Friday, April 16, 2010

Baby Una, 18 months old



This is actually from about five days before she turned 18 months old, but close enough.

I'm going to call her "Una" here, although that is not her real name, because I like Tomato Nation's method of using pseudonyms for people. And she is our first, so: Una. At some point we hope to have a second, so I guess he or she will be Secund(us/a), or maybe Deuce. Then I guess, if applicable, Terti(us/a) and Quattr(o/a). Or perhaps more obvious pseudonyms will present themselves. I could also call Una "Pumpkin," since we do all the time and she was born in October, but I like "Una" better.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

...and then I joined Facebook

I did take pictures for that previous post, but before getting around to adding them to said post, I joined Facebook, which promptly sucked up all the miniposts I might have got round to posting here, along with additional scarce computer-puttering time. Will now start attempting to rectify that a bit, providing my blog is still here -- it's giving me an error when I try to look at it right now.