kcobweb: (Default)
Hmmm, it sure seems like there's been a lot going on. We had a playdate yesterday that was a real downer, mostly because the other mother spent a large percentage of the visit complaining about how difficult her daughter is. Her daughter is a little overwhelming and bossy, yes, but I have not seen the horrible horrible child her mother depicts. It was very depressing. I want to like this woman (among other reasons, because our daughters are friends), but she was making it a tad difficult.

Also, [livejournal.com profile] galagan is back, woooooooo! Elena was starting to get X-tra whiny, but with his return, she has once again become a mostly delightful child. Whew.

She has been telling me stories. Detailed stories with great narration. She uses phrases like "she said" and "he explained" and "he moaned" and "she wailed" correctly and to great effect. She gets really into dramatic voices too. Last night's story was about her and Ariel and a boy from the library who were all mermaids and then turned into humans, and then into princesses, and they were wearing a blue dress and a yellow dress and a pink dress. (E had the pink dress, of course.) Today's story started out with Owl and Rabbit and Piglet in the Hundred Acre Wood but expanded to include all kinds of other characters and had a dramatic plane crash and dinosaurs. (The stories are dramatic, but they don't necessarily make sense yet - give her a few years to work on her plots.)

My classes for the next quarter start today! In one of my classes is someone who lives here in Williamstown! (The closest classmate I've yet encountered was in Fitchburg, I think.) We may actually get to meet face-to-face, which would be a first for me in this program. Also, one of the classes is Public Library Service, in which we examine all aspects of public libraries. One of our assignments later in the course is to read a bestselling book, preferably in a genre we might not typically choose for ourselves. Which would you pick for yourself? For me? I generally will categorically refuse to read bestsellers because I am a snob they just don't interest me. I see a couple of options there - I refuse to read horror and I'd rather not read an action thriller type. My dad said to read the Grisham, but that seems like cheating, as I have voluntarily read Grisham in the past. Maybe The Host, for the giggles? The Picoult, though I think I'd read that voluntarily too? Decisions, decisions.... (This will likely end up hinging on which book I can easily check out first from the library. But it's still fun to ponder.)

I suddenly remembered last night that I had already bought a birthday present for [livejournal.com profile] galagan (turns 39 on Thursday) - but couldn't remember where I'd stashed it. Whew, I just turned it up. Now I don't have to tear the whole house apart.
kcobweb: (Default)
I haven't written much lately..... some combination of too-busy and not-enough-going-on. :) My dad is here visiting now, and I tend not to spend as much time noodling around LJ while he's around. We went to MassMOCA yesterday (the Sol Lewitt exhibit is *amazing*!!!! It makes me very happy to realize that I have 24.5 more years to visit it and look many many more times), and today went to the local history museum that tells all about trains and train tunnels...... I like that stuff (well, the local history part, anway) and so does he, but Elena was not putting up with it at ALL, unfortunately, and kept yanking on my hand. "Can we go now, mommy? can we go? can we goooooooooo?"

Dad leaves tomorrow, as does [livejournal.com profile] galagan who is going to Phoenix for a few days of the annual spring break / spring training trip. I'm skipping the trip this year, which is fine...... Our weather is supposed to warm up in the next few days anyway, though perhaps not to Phoenix levels. :) So Elena and I will have several days to ourselves to play. These are the last days of my spring vacation from classes too - so I'm just going to read and cook and quilt/knit/fiddle with bits of yarn and fabric and stuff......'

My third quarter of classes starts next week. One dreadful required class that is some combination of business and technical services - oh goodie! two things I know *nothing* about!!! (and really don't care to, much) - and the other about public libraries, which looks fairly decent.

At some point I need to compose a big progress report post for Elena - this is what she's doing and saying and whatnot these days. But that day is not today.
kcobweb: (Default)
I've had such a good weekend! Read more... )
kcobweb: (Default)
We picked my mom up yesterday in Albany, and had dinner at a random Indian restaurant in Albany (Royal India on Central Avenue - two big thumbs up!). Elena was perfectly behaved, and the waiters were so charmed by her that they gave her free dessert. (I think they don't see little kids in there much.) So she's redeemed herself - that's more what we're used to.

My mother took my car and drove down to take the train into New York to hear my sister give a recital tonight. She'll be coming back home tomorrow..... in the 5-12 inches of snow we're suddenly supposed to be getting. Oooops. Well, she lives in Montana and knows how to drive in snow. Hopefully everything will be okay.

[livejournal.com profile] galagan went to New Hampshire to play poker today, so I'm on my own with Elena. I sent out an email about Elena's birthday party and I paid my tuition for next quarter, but I haven't done as much homework as I'd hoped. I also had some girly bonding with Elena. All in all, a good productive day.
kcobweb: (Default)
Let's see - quick update.

My bag did come the next day, and that's good. [livejournal.com profile] galagan was pretty exhausted after his ordeal (sleeping in the airport....) and has gone back down under the cold we've all been sick with. For my birthday dinner, we went out to the Korean-Japanese restaurant in town and all shared lots of yummy food (my sister: this tempura won't keep and yours will, so here - eat some!). Tonight we made Indian food (and my father made some at his house and brought it over) and had a feast. After dinner we sang Christmas carols - we had a pianist and one per part, mostly - which was fabulous. And there's been lots of cooking and baking for our big Christmas Day party. It's snowing and still rather cold, but mostly not below zero anymore (this counts as a good thing). Elena is adjusting to sleeping in a strange room / bed. I got COOL BIRTHDAY PRESENTS WHEEE!!!! (Cute new clothes; a bread machine (which I've been wanting a lot); some awesome DVDs of Broadway favorites; a food processor)

There are some fambly issues, as always - but mostly things have been pretty good. The next few days will get caught up in the trajectory and rush of Christmas, and then it's practically time to go home......
kcobweb: (Default)
* I am sick. This sucks. The first symptom was general malaise and total brain-dead-ness. I've been staring off into space a lot. Now it's mostly a terrible sore throat.

* The timing is particularly bad, because classes just ended and my brain left just before everything was due. Fortunately, I'd done the bulk of the work already, so most of my final review process consisted of "well, these all seem to be complete sentences, so I guess I'm probably good to go." ::click submit::

* I am now done with my first quarter! Vacation!

* [livejournal.com profile] galagan left today to go to Las Vegas with [livejournal.com profile] boylawyer and his lovely wife and [livejournal.com profile] elklad and a few other somebodies? I don't begrudge him the trip at all, but I'm really not in the right frame of mind to be fulltime single parenting. See above re: sick. I have about a thimbleful of patience right now, and it's being continuously overturned by a whiny child. So to speak.

* I am making a beef stew, because I was randomly craving something like that last week, and the departure of the house vegetarian means it's time to cook meat! I never cook meat, so I feel like such a clueless idiot whenever I do. Wait, is this right? Is that? Aaaagh. So far, it smells lovely though, so I'm calling it good.

I'm sure there are other insightful and pithy comments I could make or updates I could update on, but my brain is at the dribblin' down da brain level, so I'll wrap it up. Back to watching bad TV and playing silly games.
kcobweb: (EK-3y)
* We went to Pennsylvania last weekend and it was fun. We got to hang out and Elena wasn't too awful, and the drive was very pretty.

* Mom and I made feta!! We were determined to make cheese, and then I realized that I didn't have all the proper stuff for a simple mozzarella - so we went for feta instead. It took nearly twice as long as the directions implied (read: all day), and ended up pretty soft, but it has good flavor. It's like thick cottage cheese, and I think we'll just be drizzling it on everything for a while. :) (And now I've got the citric acid I need to make mozzarella too.)

* Mom left this morning - it was a long visit, and I enjoyed it, but I'm also ready to get back to my regular life and to establish some kind of a student routine.

* OMG, I'm a student. :)

* I got my new computer!! (Can't you tell that these words look extra-shiny?) I still need to transfer a few things over, but it's been *great* and I am so pleased!

* Elena is reading, bit by bit. A week ago, she looked up at my Rosie the Riveter poster on the wall, and said (unsolicited) "Can. Can do it. We can do it." That's not something I've been reading to her. We just got the book Ten Apples Up On Top, and after a couple of readings, she sat down and started her way through it. Then we realized that she really was reading and not just reciting, because she was carefully going word by word, and when she got to a word she didn't know, she'd sort of hum: "Ten apples up on top. We are not *hmmm* to stop." [going] I told her she could ask me, and then she'd ask about words she didn't recognize - sometimes adding, "You already told me that word!" It was pretty amazingly cool. She hasn't read another book (or even that book) like that in front of me, but it was great to watch her do that.
kcobweb: (Default)
* I seem to have survived my first week of class - I got all the reading done and I just need to turn in one assignment. This just might be manageable. Of course, it will increase from here, I'm sure. I think they've gone easy on us for the first week. :)

* We went to the Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art yesterday - OMG, fantastic! It's a gorgeous drive to Amherst too, which doesn't hurt.

* Today, Mom and I went to see the Dear Jane quilt at the Bennington Museum. Again, OMG. So tiny. Each block is a finished size of 4.5 inches. Sooooo many pieces. Wow.

* And tomorrow we're (Mom, Elena and I) going to Pennsylvania for a couple of days to see my sister. I'm not really looking forward to the actual drive, but it will be fun to see where she's living. And we'll probably get to see the upstate NY town I used to live in as a child. ([livejournal.com profile] galagan is staying home to work - lucky him, to get the house to himself for a few days!)
kcobweb: (Default)
* I registered for two classes, and we've started! They are both intro-level this-is-what-library-science-is kind of things - I think I'll have episodes of confusion as to which readings and assignments are for which class..... but there are a handful of people in the same classes, so we'll all be confused together.

* The online system seems to work well so far, EXCEPT that it doesn't work well with Firefox 3, so they recommend using IE instead. Argh. I hate IE. It's making me crazy.

* So far the readings are pretty good - surprisingly readable, and self-deprecating, zany and irreverent in their tone and humor (one of them quotes George Carlin). I'm hopeful that this trend will continue. Or are they trying to lure us in and get us comfortable, and then hit us with massive tomes of dryness and boredom? :)

* I already contributed one tiny little post (in response to someone else's) on the discussion board for one class. Look at me doing class participation!!! (I was never good at that in college.)

* My computer has been faltering lately, in small ways - this is not good, as I am now dependent on it for Very Important Things. So I took the plunge and bought myself a new laptop the other day. It should be here next week sometime (I hope). The extra memory and speediness should be handy.

* My mother arrives tonight for a long visit! She can be an extra pair of hands, which is good because [livejournal.com profile] galagan is going out of town for a few days. We might go to PA to see my sister for a few days too. I have to figure all this out, because I have HOMEWORK, people.

* I have lots of ideas of Things I want to do while Mom is here. Apple-picking. See the Dear Jane quilt at the Bennington Museum. Go shopping. Cheese-making. Do mucho cooking. See above about how to fit everything in. Yeah.

* I have a bug bite on my foot which itches like crazy. Elena has some terrible ones on her legs. Go away, bugs.

* My head is still spinning a little, just from the whiplash of my life. :)
kcobweb: (Default)
* did laundry (I'm going away for a long weekend, so I need clean clothes)
* sent my itinerary to my mom again
* picked basil and made pesto
* cooked chickpeas and made hummus
* printed out a letter and resume for a job opportunity that has been presented to me (nothing exciting - just a few hours, low pay - it's basically just for the glory. More to come if I actually get it).
* helped [livejournal.com profile] galagan muck around on the roof - seeing if there are any visible problems that could have caused the leak the other night (not particularly), plus cutting some branches that were overhanging the roof and sweeping leaves and shit off.
* got an email from Drexel that they got my online application, and now I just need to send them X, Y and Z. And transcripts from my colleges - which were sent weeks ago.
* have heart attack
* call Drexel and get it all straightened out (I think) - they seem to have them, just they were laying about somewhere else.
* eat lunch (still in progress)
* see that my sister's boyfriend has changed his status on Facebook from "In a relationship" to "engaged". I knew this already (of course) - this is just the most public announcement I've seen thus far. They are keeping it very cool and on the down-low. Not going to have a big fancy wedding. Still! My baby sister! :)

Next: errand-running and volunteering at the library
kcobweb: (red dress)
* [livejournal.com profile] galagan is back from the Yukon, and had a great time. Perhaps if you all clamor, he will write up more of it in his LJ. Go, clamor. Show him the love. :)

* Elena was beyond thrilled that her daddy came back. I wish I could say that her behavior has turned around completely - but she's still acting up terribly. Mainly testing every limit she can think of / find. Also, she's having terrible trouble with petty decisions: I will ask something simple like "do you want the pink skirt or the blue skirt?" and she will change her mind 14 times, then say "blue". Then as I start to put the blue skirt on her, she *screams*, "NO, PINK! PINK! PINK!" I reach for the pink.... well, we go through several iterations of this, until everyone's exhausted. Then we go on to the next decision..... :( Srsly, it sucks. We've tried calmly explaining to her that she just has to pick, and we don't *care* which skirt she wears (or whatever) but thus far, that hasn't really worked. She has a temper and she's easily frustrated. In short: there's a lot of yelling (from everyone, unfortunately) going on.

* I have been waiting to submit my other school applications until I get my letters from my second reference. I've started feeling really impatient..... This afternoon, I got an email from her assistant that they've been put in the mail; they should be here in a few days, and I can package them up with my other stuff and send them off. And then do more waiting.

* Synchronized diving rocks! Stupid beach volleyball does not.

* In 10 days, I get to go ALL BY MYSELF for a long weekend to my cousin's wedding. Woo!
kcobweb: (Default)
We're back..... Our visit was a whirlwind - friends to meet, pictures to take, lots of food. My sister finally announced to the room at large that she and her boy are talking about marriage (her admitting that just may be one of the signs of the apocalypse). My dad's cabin did not burn down and appears to be safe. I got to talk a little to [livejournal.com profile] galagan and he is doing well and having fun in the Yukon. Our trip back yesterday was pretty smooth, and Elena behaved amazingly well: "I sat in my seat and wore my seatbelt and sat still." We got home late and I got an email that said I got into my safety school (translation: I will definitely be going to library school - now it's just a matter of when and *where*). I still am waiting on a recommendation before I can send in the other applications (and get into the programs I actually *want*). I haven't had a decent night's sleep in a week - even last night, after we got back, my brain was....exceedingly boingy and Would. Not. Shut. Up. [livejournal.com profile] scottahill and Jen are here tonight with the cutest little button of a baby Miriam, and she's been crawling all around and flinging Elena's toys happily.
kcobweb: (beartooth)
Very brief run-down: difficulty getting out of Albany due to mechanical problem, but finally finally after many hours of waiting, got onto an airplane and eventually got to Billings, only 11 hours later than scheduled, or something like that. Elena was amazing for most of that - better than one could ever hope for.

We've been to the local zoo (very small), the wading pool, and an outdoor concert. This morning we went to my old office and my mom's office, mostly to show off Elena. I'm having dinner with one set of friends tonight, and lunch with another friend and her 3-year-old tomorrow. We hit one garage sale this morning, and there may be more tomorrow. :) There have been naps, and there's lots of reading.

[livejournal.com profile] galagan is doing well - there's a bit of a report on his LJ, if you're interested. And my dad's cabin is still standing, as of last report. We all have fingers crossed that this continues - but at present, the fire is not moving much, and when it does, it's generally heading in another direction.

Hope everyone is well!!
kcobweb: (stormcastle)
Okay, I think we're packed, except for girly's necessities like quilt-doll-bear-nightlight which are all in her room until morning, as well as my toiletries. I have new books for E to read, a new doll, a few toys, and something to color for the flight tomorrow. And my iPod is loaded with her latest favorite TMBG album (Here Come the 123s), plus the others I already had.

No solid news on the wildfire/cabin front, but it doesn't look good, as the latest news stories seem to hint that they might have to evacuate the town which is east of the cabin.... and the fire started west of the cabin. That seems Bad.

We had a fabulous time last night with [livejournal.com profile] xen_opus and his JB. We wandered around campus gawking at all the new buildings, "new" being defined as "within the past 10 years".

*sigh* I should probably go to bed. I need to wake up well before oh-dark-thirty in order to catch the morning flight. I hate the night before I fly out in the morning, because I can never sleep. Blah.

I'll be on-line occasionally this week - and back home next Wednesday.
kcobweb: (Default)
If you're a Westerner, you're used to this. It happens, sooner or later...... My dad called this morning after being evacuated from his beloved cabin. There's a wildfire up the valley from him, and the news reports say it's burning out of control. The news story says that they can't fight it, because the ground is too rugged. My dad sounded pretty despondent. When the phone rang, I was figuring out what I'm doing each day of my visit, and which day I might be able to go up there. Now, it's unclear if we'll be allowed up there, or if there will be anything left to see. :(

Of course, here it's raining. The irony - we don't need it, and they do. I'd like to package up this storm and send it, by express mail to the West Fork of Rock Creek, plz. Without the lightning perhaps, because they don't need to risk it.

Checking the weather reports..... it's gonna be hot while we're there. Not ghastly, but enough to make me crabby. [livejournal.com profile] galagan called last night from Whitehorse and said the sun was shining and it was in the low 60s..... So jealous.

Elena is having a rough time dealing with separation from her daddy. She mentions him multiple times a day (now often in the context of "Daddy misses me"). She has not gone down to bed (nap-time or night-time) once without a screaming fit since he left. She wants another book, or she wants to play more, or she wants other pajamas..... Really, she wants her Daddy.

Right now, I'm picking up toys before [livejournal.com profile] xen_opus and JB arrive, because this place looks like a disaster movie hit it.

And for those of you on Facebook - is there something in the water lately, or *what*? Or is it just me? I've had a million new friends added in the past few days (some which I instigated, some I did not). The new crop includes some of my favorite people from high school, so that's kind of awesome.

Wow - in 48 hours I will be..... the gods willing..... just arriving in Billings.
kcobweb: (Default)
My GRE was a week ago today, and it feels like 18 million years. It's been a long week......

[livejournal.com profile] galagan finally got into the doctor, and they couldn't rule out Lyme disease (the bite, or hives, or whatever), so they did a blood test and gave him antibiotics. I didn't think they'd have any definitive answers anyway. Hopefully he'll be all right. :)

I just got back from taking him to the airport, so he's now on his way to the Yukon, and I'm on my own / solely in charge around here for the next 2 weeks. Mostly, I think Elena and I will be fine - I'm most worried about our plane trip on Tuesday to Montana. Flying with a toddler is hard and lots of work - and bad enough when there are two adults. Just me? I expect to collapse in a puddle of goo as soon as we arrive in Billings and I can hand her off to my mom..... :P

Meanwhile, our major distraction in the next few days is that [livejournal.com profile] xen_opus is coming to visit, with JB. I'm looking forward to meeting JB, and eager to see [livejournal.com profile] xen_opus.... and glad that we will have more people around in the house for a night - just so I don't go insane.

Okay, I should do some dinner-prep stuff before I have to go get my child. (But it's so *quiet* right now! Oh well.)
kcobweb: (Default)
Friday afternoon, [livejournal.com profile] ltlbird showed up and after dinner, she and I got all dressed up and went to the theater. She Loves Me is such an awesome show! I keep saying that I don't understand why it's not a classic of the American theater that everyone knows about, like The Sound of Music or The Wizard of Oz. cut for rambling about the show )

Saturday, we got up, and [livejournal.com profile] ltlbird went to play with [livejournal.com profile] yaoobruni and help him pick veggies at the CSA farm. Elena and I went to an outdoor concert at the library by 2 guys who do kids music - Davis Bates and Roger Tincknell. (We have one of Tincknell's CDs.) Two guys, lots of different instruments (banjo, mandolin, many percussive things), too many puns and bad jokes, lots of songs with hand motions or audience participation. It was fun, though Elena was more taken with her balloon than anything. Back home for naptime - when [livejournal.com profile] ltlbird came back, we just read and talked until E got up. Then we went to the playground to assuage her swinging needs, then out for Thai food and ice cream. After we got home and put E to bed, we watched..... well, a few weeks ago, in conversation, I randomly discovered that [livejournal.com profile] galagan had never seen My Fair Lady, so I decided I had to fix that. So we watched that last night. (You know, it's really really hard to watch that movie and not wish that Julie Andrews was in it instead. I don't think I'd seen that movie since high school, and I had forgotten how much it reeks of class and caste in that British way - even beyond the obvious. I also realized that Audrey Hepburn with long hair looks a *lot* like a friend of mine from Billings. It was fun to watch [livejournal.com profile] galagan's face at the end, when he realized that "Eliza, where the devil are my slippers?" is the last line.)

This morning, [livejournal.com profile] ltlbird left (much to Elena's chagrin and sadness) and we stuck on our bathing suits, despite the threatening storm clouds, and went to the swimming hole - Elena was adamant from the time she woke up that she wanted to go swimming. We were the only people there and the water was COLD, so we just waded in the shallows, and watched the tadpoles swim away. I also saw a few bitty bitty frogs who had just come on land, with tiny vestigial tails. And I found a small feather that was likely from a blue jay - blue and black, with a white tip. I spent the afternoon reading, and trying to straighten up my desk a little bit.

I have a busy week ahead. The next few weeks, actually. Wow.
kcobweb: (Default)
For the 4th of July, we went to our small town parade (finally - we've missed the others since moving here) - it was lovely and great fun.

July 4th parade 2

We chilled out the rest of the day, and then kind of skipped the whole fireworks thing because we hate America we are heretics *and* terrorists we just aren't big fans, generally (loud noises and flashing lights? not my very favorite thing ever). Maybe next year we'll keep Elena up and take her to see them.....

Saturday I watched the women's Wimbledon final (yay Venus!), and then um. There was *lots* of reading. And I got a weird stomach/full-body ache in the evening, but that passed and I had a decent night. I hate getting weird random pains; I suspect it's related to getting old.

Today we went hiking in Hopkins Forest, which was beautiful. I am so used to hiking in the West, in rather arid conditions - so hiking in the East in a deciduous forest, with plants and flowers and creeks everywhere, always seems like such a *novelty* to me. Elena did a really good job - she spent a lot of time being the leader, running off ahead and shouting over her shoulder "follow me!" It's so nice to see that. I watched some of the much-delayed Wimbledon men's final - alas, my boyfriend Roger lost.... (I have crushes on all my favorite men's tennis players - Federer is my main favorite now, but I also like James Blake, who is my "other boyfriend" for these purposes. I had a crush on Sampras too.... Courier.... Chang....) We went out for sandwiches tonight for dinner (I am having my usual summer I-don't-know-what-to-make-for-dinner malaise) - and afterwards went over to Windsor Lake and waded in the lake and played on the playground. Elena has been begging for some playground time for the last few days..... so it was nice to do that. Then we came home and she had a meltdown over bedtime stories. :)

Time now for ice cream and more Bone, and perhaps some bad TV in the background: right now I'm half-listening to "The Singing Office" (I think that's what it's called). I wish they'd walk into [livejournal.com profile] sanj's office, for example, and let her blow us away. This seems right up her alley. :)

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