Wednesday, April 30, 2008

well at least everything else is getting fixed

Thumb still hurts some, but is on the mend.

Meanwhile, I am working on fixing everything else about me that is broken.

I'm in the last phase of dental work, which is hurting the pocketbook more than my gum line.

And I finally went to the doctor the get those headaches checked out. In addition to the headaches, I've been having recurring muscle pain in my neck (which I chalked up to a few specific moves in the choreography I'd been working with since October), but the neck pain started to migrate. It was moving in and out of my arm on that side, and then down into my armpit. I couldn't tell if the muscle pain was causing the headaches, or if it was the other way around.

The doctor ordered a few x-rays, which I still need to review with him, although he did say he'd call if he saw anything obvious. He also ordered a slew of blood and urine tests, which I passed with flying colors.

The one test I have not taken yet is the one that he believes will point to the root of my problems. A sleep test.

"Hmmmm...has anyone ever told you that you snore?"

"Yes, my boyfriend. Every single time I sleep with him, thank you very much."

"Well, as you were describing your symptoms, the longer you spoke the more it seems to me you might have sleep apnea. Do you know what that is?"

"Yes, my dad has it, and has to use a CPAP machine when he sleeps."

"Ohhh, so it runs in the family, too? I'm ordering a sleep study for you."

Next week I get rigged up and sent home with a box that records everything all night long. I bring it back to the clinic in the morning so they can confirm that I do in fact snore, but I guess more importantly, just how much.

And also next week I get my boobs squished flat between two big mammogram plates for my first time.

It is all so exciting.
But hey, cholesterol is fine, blood pressure is fine, glucose levels, thyroid...I'm all good. Except the thumb.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

thumb still hurts, best i can do....

...but able to hit the spacebarAtLeastAfewTimes
Hurts to knit, too. Grrrrr.

You Are a Life Blogger!

Your blog is the story of your life - a living diary.

If it happens, you blog it. And make it as entertaining as possible.

Monday, April 28, 2008



Sunday, April 27, 2008








Saturday, April 26, 2008

snaps on saturday

Remote bloggin'.
Empty theater, tech rehearsal, pre-show.

Friday, April 25, 2008

one well rounded day

Got kid to school.

Walked the dog (I typo'd god, by the way...hahaha).

Got a massage (woohoo!).

Participated in and led a section of the opening workshop for Dance Under Construction.

Had a late lunch with one of my best friends and got to resolve some stuff that we've been needing to talk about since January. It was good (ok, I just typo'd god again).

Came home and cut up a pan of veggies for roasting up and serving along with couscous, and feta cheese.

Shared a bottle of wine with TheMostImportantGuy, while eating the yummy food and watching August Rush together with MyFavoriteKid.

Pretty damn great day.
Tomorrow is mostly to be spent in the theater, and a performance tomorrow night, so I must go get some sleep!

Thursday, April 24, 2008

more upcoming shows

So I already mentioned that this Saturday night I am performing with Dandelion Dancetheater (read about that one here).

I have other events coming up the following week with the BellyDance troupe I co-teach/co-direct, The Sabah Ensemble. These events are part of Bay Area National Dance Week....

....which should really be called "Bay Area Dance Week and a Half". It's a program packed full of free dance classes and performances. Our troupe will be doing both.

The Sabah Ensemble (ie yours truly) will be teaching a free bellydance class Thursday May 1st from 7:45pm-9:45pm. The ad reads:

Belly Dance From The Inside Out
Imagery, body alignment, awareness and technique lead us to the expressive, ancient dance form of belly dancing. All levels welcome. Wear comfortable clothing and bring a blanket or a mat. Taught by the Sabah Ensemble. Please call to reserve a place.
Western Sky Studio - 2525 Eight St (Dwight Way), Berkeley CA 510.848.4878


The performance will be held during Dance-A-Rama:

(sorry for the quality, I don't have a scanner, and it's late and I'm tired!)

Through the fuzz though, maybe you can make out that the shows begin at 1pm, and the Sabah Ensemble will be performing between 4p-5p hour. It's all happening at the same studio (Western Sky) noted above. After the performance is the best part: snacks ;-)
Also Free!

If any of you come to any of these things, do make sure to say hi!!

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

poked and prodded

I had an entirely different post in mind for today (the last of the Boston trip), but I am exhausted.

Yesterday I had a had a marathon dentist appointment, and today I had a doctor's appointment today for all of those headaches I've been having lately (which resulted in a battery of tests and x-rays).

In between all the medical stuff, I am trying to cobble together a mini-solo that needs to end up in Saturday's performance. No fun. I don't like to cobble when I'm in a "drop deeply into the work" mode.

I'll be fine, and if I get some sleep, I wont even be whiny ;-)

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

things i love about the internet

Being able to watch the San Jose Peregrine Falcon "nest cam".**

Jose and Clara had four eggs this year, and when I woke up this morning two of them had hatched. Another one hatched this afternoon.

Clearly I need to get out more often.
But even if I did, I wouldn't be cruising a rooftop buggin' new parents.

** do check out the webcam; the quality is much better than the photo above that I filched from the local news channel. You can even see the eyelids moving LOL. The parents are mostly keeping the babies warm right now, but every once in awhile they get up an move them around.

Monday, April 21, 2008

plimoth plantation, the gimp perspective

So we went to Plimoth Plantation, which I wrote about yesterday, and we started off by touring the Wampanoag homesite.

The ground there was firmly packed, but there were roots and rocks sticking out everywhere. It was a bit rough in spots for using a wheelchair, but you know me--stubborn and independent as shit--I kept at it. That is when this guy....

...asked me if I needed a hand, to which I replied no, but that I did have a question.

"So, I am curious. What did your culture do about people with disabilities? Because there are some tribal cultures on other continents that would leave someone like me out in the woods for the wolves, ya' know."

"Our community would never cast someone out. The village would pull together as a whole in support of someone who had needs."

"Well, I suppose I'd still be able to contribute in some way, right? Beadwork, basket making cooking, tending to the children..."

"Well, actually, you'd probably have done much more than that. Our people believed that when a person was given a physical challenge, it meant that Spirit had gifted them in exchange with some other sacred talent. In our culture, you'd be revered."

Sheesh. Ok. I can deal with that.

Next stop, the 1627 English Village....
oh, and I should tell you about getting to our next stop. You know, when we arrived at the Plantation, I was offered a ride in a golfcart to bring me from village to village. I refused, and was told the there was an accessible path between the two villages, but to stay away from the river. Did I take the accessible path?? No. Of course not. I took the one along the river. The one that had a sign posted with a wheelchair and a big red line through it, and the words "27 steps" printed underneath it. Hahahaha. All determined-like, I went up on crutches and my mom and MyFavoriteKid dragged my wheelchair up. I need to stop involving others when I get stubborn like that.

Ok, so our next stop....
was the 1627 English Village, which being closer to the ocean, was a village full of paths that were covered in sand. Enough sand for a wheelchair to get totally bogged down in. Aside from being totally stuck, I was frustrated, and I ditched my wheelchair and switched to crutches. That is when I ran into this lady (in the red)....

...who'd been watching me struggle through her open doorway, and to whom I said, "I'm guessing there weren't a whole lot of wheelchairs around here. No ADA back then, eh?"


So then I said, "So, I am curious. What did your culture do about people with disabilities? Because there are some tribal cultures on other continents that would leave someone like me out in the woods for the wolves, ya' know."

To which she replied, "Well, if the family was well to do enough to keep you, they would have made do. But if they were not, well...we'd have to be leaving you by the side of the road, I'm afraid."


Quick. Call for the golfcart. I need me the express train back to the land of reverence.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

catching up on vacation notes

Back to our trip to Boston. Where'd I leave off? Oh, yeah. Day One was travel, Day Two was TheFamilyHistoryTour2008 plus the trip into Quincy, Day Three was visiting Marblehead/Salem....and that is where I got sidetracked.

Well, Day Four was Plymouth. Today will be your basic tour, probably not all that interesting, but do turn in tomorrow for "Plimoth Plantation: The Gimp Perspective". I'd like to think it will worth your time ;-)

Ok, so this day trip into Plymouth was taken by my parents, MyFavoriteKid, and myself. On the road to Plymouth, MyFK got to see his first cranberry bog. It took him a couple of guesses to figure out what it was.

Our first stop was Plimoth Plantation, which is a basically an active exhibit depicting the lives of the Pilgrims and the Native Americans during the first years after the settlers arrived in the 1620's.

Now, it is this type of history lesson that typically makes me feel just a wee bit embarrassed to be an American. I'm not sure why. I mean, my family line isn't even remotely connected to the early settlers. As a kid though, when we got to this part of American History in school, I never did buy into the whole joyous Thanksgiving dinner bit. It's a good thing I didn't, because of course that isn't really how it went down for our Native "neighbors", now was it.

Anyhow, the Plimoth Plantation is divided into two sections. There is a site showing life in a Wampanoag camp,

and another section that depicts the early years of the Pilgrims.

The Wampanoag camp is staffed by native docents who are in full costume and performing daily activities, but they are not roleplaying. They respond to visitors from a 21st century perspective. They had no problems at all politely stating what a bunch of dingdongs the English were.

It went something like, "Our homes are simply built, and are made to retain heat in winter and keep the interior cool in summer.

Then they continue with, "Have you been to the settler's camp yet? Well, bundle up! The English built their homes close to the ocean where the snow is damp, with fireplaces that suck the heat right out! I won't even mention those windows and doors."

In fact, not only did the Pilgrims build closer to the water, but the location of the native camp being depicted was their summer camp. In the winter, they were farther inland.

The comparisons and observations of poor choices were endless. Here's another. The Wampanoag farmed their vegetables in the middle of the village, and young girls were tasked with scaring away the birds. The Pilgrims grew their corn outside the village walls. And starved to death.

As far as I could tell, the only thing the Pilgrims had going for them was the knitting.

Unlike the Wampanoag camp, in the Pilgrim village, the docents did roleplay, acting the part of an actual settler. When I asked this gentleman if I could take a picture of his stockings and garters, he asked me if I could knit, to which I replied yes...and then he asked me if I could cook, to which I replied that I was a trained which he politely let me know that I was in demand, and would I like to see his house, and that his name was, "Love".
"Your name is Love????"
"Why yes, I have taken a virtuous name."

Hahaha. Well, hopefully that will get you some new socks, dude...otherwise you are going to freeze to death.

I have more to say about Plimoth Plantation, but I'll save that for tomorrow's Gimp Perspective on the place.

Oh, I guess I should mention that on the way I out I just sort of stumbled into the gift shop and found this to bring home:

One of the many contributors to my suitcase being charged an overweight fee, to be sure.

Okay, so we left the Plimoth Plantation, and met up with my Unlce, his wife, and my Grandmother at Isaac's for lunch.

You just can't get clam chowder like this anywhere. I swear, I gained more than 10 pounds on this trip just on seafood. It was worth every bite, though.

Then we went to visit The Mayflower II.

You know, it was f-f-f-freeezing cold that day, and the bonus for sticking it out is that there were only two other people at the Mayflower exhibit besides us. That meant the docent was able to talk with me for a good 20 minutes or so while MyFK ran all around the ship, which I wasn't in the mood to do on crutches with hands so cold I couldn't feel my fingers (bad mix). I learned so much from that guy. He was an amazing wealth of information, and I was really glad to have his time.

We tried to see Plymouth Rock, but it's surrounding structure is being refurbished.


So that was Day Four, which ended with family gathering back over at grandma's and a bunch of pizzas ordered.

Tomorrow the Gimp Perspective, then next up, my day with Sara. After that, all I have left was one last lazy day with family eating more seafood, and then the travel day home, which I don't care to remember.

Saturday, April 19, 2008

snaps on saturday

I am pathetic. Not always. But this time for sure.

The backstory: I am definitely spiritual, although not religious. I was raised Jewish, and from what minimal exposure I have had to Judaism over the years, I dig it. Passover has always been my absolutely all time favorite holiday, Jewish holiday or otherwise, and my mom's cooking is the key component. I look forward to it every year.

The current status: This year my mom and dad were too wiped from the Boston trip to want to pull off a seder dinner. When mom announced that early this week, I was disappointed, and then like most disappointments I don't feel like processing, I just decided to not think about it again.

Tonight: MyFavoriteKid asks for a dinner of his favorite shrimp noodle soup, and I oblige. I set the bowl on the counter next to the box of matzoh my mom left me earlier in the week as a token passover cancellation gesture and that's when I realize...ha...tonight is passover. ...and it hits me hard.

For all of those wonderful passover memories my parents gave me, look at what passover memory I created for my kid:

TOP. FRIGGIN'. RAMEN. What a slacker. I am so ashamed of myself. I am 41 years old, this year I finally live in a house I could have entertained a group in, and I am a professional chef and caterer.

When my mom said she couldn't do it, did I pick up the ball??? NO. I accepted a box of matzoh, pouted, and I just gave up on it. And I made TOP RAMEN.


I need to go hang my head in shame now.

I swear, right here, right now, I will do better next year.
Check back here next year, will ya'??
And if I fail, bitchslap me.

Friday, April 18, 2008

sound the alarms

We have an sudden outbreak of DateNight on our hands.

Ducks were all in a row for an evening that included a decent blogpost, but MyFavoriteKid got a call just after 6pm from a buddy who was wondering if MyFk could come spend the night.

The buddy is down in the old 'hood, so it's a 45 minute drive in each direction, but DateNights are worth their weight in gas money.

Off to cook a romantic dinner and plop in a dvd!

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Blogger is being PainInTheAss-y. It wont let me upload photos. Grrr.

Instead of my post in progress, I offer to you "An Engineer's Guide To Cats" (ganked from Snarkland--thank you!!), which was the perfect remedy for my blogger frustrations.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

still behind, may never catch up

This happens all the time.
I want to finish writing about something before it slips away (ie the trip), but current events are just too in my face.

Today I was rear ended. Twice. By the same driver.
No shit.

Here in California, you can make a right turn on a red light if you stop first (unless posted otherwise). So there I was, at a very busy intersection, stopped and waiting to make a right hand turn, which I couldn't do because the oncoming traffic was think and mostly semi-trucks carrying loaded containers. The lady behind me just sorta bumped right into me. Not too bad, but enough for me to want to get out and take a look and make a point. I pulled forward a couple of feet, got out of the car to assess the damage, and didn't see any big deal. She asked me if I was okay, and I told her she should pay more attention. The end.

I got back in my car, and before I could even release my parking brake, she slammed into me again. Hellooooooooooo......

As for my car, it still was not much more than a couple of big scratches on my rubber-ish bumper (or whatever that stuff is made out of these days). Her car on the other hand was pretty toasted. She had a fold in her engine hood, lost a section of bumper, and bashed out a headlamp.

I phone the police to come take a report, and go figure, she tried to tell them it was my fault...hahahahahaha.


In other news (and not to make this a DogBlog), yes...I agree. Dog training for Riley is definitely in order. I just couldn't sign him up until he got rid of his kennel cough and all of his shots and boosters became effective.

But today (after being rear ended) I took Riley to the dog park for the first time. The kind where it's fenced in and you can let them run around with other dogs like a big giant playdate, but for dogs instead of kids. Or dogs who are like kids. Or something.

Anyway, Riley was awesome. Got along great with the other dogs, and was really into starting up something that looked like a game of tag with the other dogs. What was funny though, is that he'd get a big dog to chase him, and then he'd run under and through something low, like a park bench for example, so that the big dog would lose. Very crafty, that Riley.

But the best part of the day was that I got to meet a dog trainer there, who does one on one training, and is reasonably priced. I'm glad to have found him, because even though Riley isn't freaked by the wheelchair, some dogs (and some people, it would seem LOL) are freaked out around moving metal objects...and I wasn't sure how that was going to work out in a group training environment. I still have a call into the head trainer of the local humane society to hear if they can accommodate me, but I haven't heard back yet. Going with this one on one trainer might just be the ticket.

Last but not least, I have to say, I have completely failed in my goal to respond to all comments in the comments. I'm a slacker, and I am sorry. I DO read them, and I always am thankful for every contribution (almost LOL), and if I owe you an email or feedback, I am sorry.

I am also about 2 weeks behind or so on reading other people's blogs. If you have had something big in your life happen, I am sorry if I have missed it.

I just cant seem to catch up on anything but laundry, but hey---at least I managed that!

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

dogis blogis interuptis

I swear to you, I was sitting here tonight working on a post about the rest of the Boston trip. Really, I was. And then I began to notice that horrible "uh-oh, the house is too quiet" sound.

I used to only worry about that sound and what it meant to me as the parent of MyFavoriteKid. Now I have to worry about what it means to me as the parent of TheDog.

TheDog who eats my things even though he has his own things.

The very first week RileyTheDog was here, he took my beloved BunnyMan out into the backyard, and then hid one of his own toys underneath it. I was distressed (as I love BunnyMan beyond words), but he didn't hurt Bunnyman, just moved him. And to be honest, it was sort of comical. There was a photo taken of the pile of toys it was so funny, but I can't for the life of me find it.

Since then, Riley's habits have been progressing from moving to eating, I am sad to report.

While at TheMostImportantGuy's for a week, Riley ate a wooden sculpture of a frog that was special to TheMIG, then onto a heavy duty speaker cable for a PA system, and after that one very expensive set of headphones (of recording engineer caliber). Not. Good.

When I got home from the trip, I promptly went shopping to get Riley some more toys and things of delicious chewyness so he'd leave our things alone.

I wish it could say it has helped.

First up to dragged outside and/or spread around the house? Two skeins of yarn and a bag of roving.

The day after that Riley dragged my Nintendo DS and a pair of headphones out into the yard and tried to bury it.

Tonight when I got home from dinner out with my folks? More yarn.

BlackBunnyFibers, no less. Danged dog. At least this was leftovers from my Forest Canopy Shoulder Shawl, so at least I feel like I have used the yarn for its original purpose....but there is enough left here to make a large lacy scarf, and I had set it out on the table as inspiration. It is salvageable, but at the moment it's in a knotty dog spitty mess. It was dragged all over the house, over the couch, and around the coffee table a few times.

I scorned TheDog, then sat down to write a post. That is when the "house too quiet" sound happened (quiet really is a sound, ya' know).

No sign of Riley, but Riley had eaten Perkins.

Perkins is my Zombie. Riley had eaten his lips. Maybe we could pretend that Riley was just kissing Perkins and accidentally got a little over zealous.

After I found Perkins and sobbed, I went looking for Riley. I found Riley "kissing" Bunnyman. He hadn't ripped him up yet, but you could tell it was coming. BunnyMan is currently hiding scared under my pillows.

You know, on the day we adopted Riley, the very first thing he did when he walked into our house was to raise his leg to the wall and take a whizz. I told him no, stuck him outside for a few minutes, and it has not been an issue since. Done. Fixed. Trained. He got it.

Apparently teaching him to stop snacking on all things important is not going to be quite so simple.

Monday, April 14, 2008

upcoming show

I am performing with Dandelion Dancetheater as part of a weekend long series of workshops and panels (which are free), followed by performances.

The 10th annual Dance Studies Conference

"Willing and Able:
Re-Figuring Dance, Performance, and Disability"
Incorporating perspectives on dance from the visual arts, geography, architecture, and medical studies, this inter-campus graduate student conference examines how particular framings of the body define "ability" in dance and movement.

See more info about the weekend series here.

Willing and Able: An Evening of Performance

Saturday April 26th, 8:00pm-10:00pm

Malonga Casquelord Center for the Arts
1428 Alice Street, Oakland
Tickets $15
Ticket Reservations: 510-642-3982

AXIS Dance performing in Joe Goode’s the beauty that was mine, through the middle, without stopping

Eric Kupers/Dandelion Dance Theater performing Spinal Fluid

Petra Kuppers Performance Group "The Olimpias" performing Tiresias

Mat Fraser (UK) performing a cabaret work

Sunday, April 13, 2008


Well, as far as I'm concerned, you can cry if you want to.

(posted in the parking lot of a great cafe in Concord that Sara brought us to for I keep saying, more on that part of our trip soon)

Saturday, April 12, 2008

the eggs, they are cozy

Per the "rules" of Blog365, when you are off the grid, you can still write your blog entry old fashioned style, and post it later...and this is just that!
I was out of town with TheMostImportantGuy Saturday and Sunday, visiting the LandOfNoInternet. This entry and the next are delayed and backdated.


Egg Cozies for Grammie

(made to replace this old thing)

Ribbed Cozy knit by TheAmpuT
YARN: Cascade 220 The Heathers, Color 1233

Garter Stitch Cozy knit by MyFavoriteKid!!!
(I helped with the turtleneck, picking up the sts for the sleeves, and the sewing up, but he did all the knitting)
Yarn: Cascade 220 Paints, Color 9923

NEEDLES: both knit with US6/4.0mm Brittany dpn's

PATTERN: inspired by Kristin Nicholas' Turtleneck Egg Cozies found in Weekend Knitting (we made them with larger needles and cast-on more sts....grammie has arthritis and we wanted them to be easy on, easy off)

NOTES: Very cool to look on Ravelry and see that most people knit these up to make ornaments, gift tags, or to top wine bottles. Fun little stash buster, but the sewing up and weaving in of ends was a bit of a drag. If I were to make a miniature sweater again, it would be a seamless top down raglan ;-)

Oh! And we packaged the egg cozies up with two adorable antique milk glass egg stands that I found in Lexington around the corner from Sara's favorite yarn store (more on that part of our trip soon!)

Friday, April 11, 2008

twenty-one hours, door to door.

That is how long it took us to travel home. Too bad I don't have the stats for how many miles we walked from gate to gate (or should I say, terminal to terminal) at each of the airports we stopped at.

Other interesting travel stats:

Famous people seen: 2
We saw Mickey Rooney and Jane Fonda getting off a plane in Atlanta.

Number of airplane snacks eaten: I don't even want to count. But I am now addicted to biscoff cookies.

Dollars spent getting my suitcase home: 80
My suitcase was under the limit on the way out, but not on the way back. It didn't even occur to me that there was a limit. And here I was thinking I was so smart using just the one suitcase for me and MyFavoriteKid to share (easier for me to get through an airport by myself while using a wheelchair).

What I bought that put me over the limit: yarn and knitting books. GAH!

Thursday, April 10, 2008


It's something like 1:50am, so it is officially Friday, and this officially counts as a Blog365 post, right?

It had better, because I confirmed our flights mid-day today (after about 3 hours of trying to get through overloaded phone lines), and I finally confirmed that all was okay, and our flights were NOT going to be canceled.

But when I decided to check again just one more time before going to sleep at around 11pm? I found everything had indeed been canceled.


I've been on phone for another 3 hours trying to get us booked with another airline. We now will arrive home even later (it was first 7pm, then 9:45pm, and now 10:30pm), and we also have to make two plane changes (yes, us...the PartyOfFourPeanutGallery, in which we have 1 minor child, 2 people with disabilities, and 1 person who will be kvetching all through the airports because she can't smoke a cigarette for 13 hours--this oughta be fun).

I will never fly again, and if my suitcase makes it home, I am going to burn it.

I am sorry if this is rambling and disjointed, but I am exhausted. I need to go now. I can get about 4 hours of sleep if I go now.

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

this cannot be a good sign

My mom rings my room this morning to tell me that she's watching the news and that the airline that we are booked for on our return trip has canceled something like 850 flights today. Or yesterday. Or today and yesterday. Whatever. A LOT of flights.

I log on to the laptop to start getting the details in front of me so that I can call American Airlines and the email at the top of the stack that pops open automatically is my "Daily Thought" from It says:

April 09, 2008
I think the next best thing to solving a problem is finding some humor in it.
— Frank A. Clark


I've already been on the phone for a couple of hours. The automated system for American Airlines says we're on a flight departing at 10:55am, the paperless ticket (sent by an email and then printed on paper--could someone please explain that to me??) says we depart at 7:30am (but that ticket was issued by Delta, who we flew out on--explain that too, will ya??), and the assholes at Expedia apparently think I am a party of three and that my son should be left here with his grandmother.

When I use the automated system at American Airlines, it shows everything correctly, thank goodness (I just hope it's for real), with our entire party of four departing on our preferred 10:55am flight. But then the television news shows a big giant mess at the airports. And when I call American, they won't even give the option of speaking to a customer service representative. The just tell you that they are busy and to call back later *click!*.

Better start looking for that humor, huh.

Anyhow, my plans to use the BloggersBidet are probably cursed. I will probably be on the phone all day trying to get through, although I was just thinking maybe I should take a little tour into Boston today and perhaps our first stop should be to see the scenic beauty of the American Airlines counter at Logan airport.

Next time I drive.

eta: if you are missing me, you can see me over at Sara's!

Tuesday, April 08, 2008

like my behind?

As I expected, I am behind.

I did get to hook up with Sara today (amazing and great and totally fun), and then I got back in time to freshen up and get to the big 90th birthday shindig for grandma.

I have so much to write about!! We might go into Boston proper for more touring around, but MyFavoriteKid and I are feeling pretty wiped out. We've toured Quincy, Salem/Marblehead, Plymouth, and Concord/Lexington...AND we've made time for family, which was the whole reason for the visit in the first place. We may just opt to have one last local day here with family instead. Besides, that will give us a good reason to come back next year (in the van) to catch the things we missed.

If we stay put tomorrow, I hope to be able to clean up my behind ;-)

Monday, April 07, 2008

jetlag has won

I am too tired to do a proper post today.
But maaaan, do I have some stories!

I'm just doing too much during the day, and I'm only getting a couple of hours of sleep each night because I can't beat the time change. Tomorrow is a little crazy, as well. I'm going to get in a visit with Sara, and then we're onto the 90th birthday dinner for grandma. I'm not sure if trying to get a post in tomorrow will be any better. It would help if I could get in even one night where I sleep for more than three hours though, so I am off to bed instead of uploading photos.

I hear Wednesday is supposed to be a mellow one before we hit the plane back home. Hope to catch up then.

Sunday, April 06, 2008


MyFavoriteKid and I took a drive up to Marblehead today to visit a very dear friend of mine. She is from the east coast originally, but I met her while she was living in California for a stint. She's been back in Marblehead for maybe 8 or 9 years now, and has two daughters just a couple of years younger than MyFK. I haven't seen her since she moved back.

I cannot believe I didn't get lost driving there. I printed out driving directions but nothing was labeled the same way in real life as it was online. If that wasn't the issue, then there was also the repeated problem of there just being flat out no street signs posted on the corners. It was almost like the people in Marblehead would like you to keep out. Perhaps it's the ghost witches of Salem? I dunno. But now I understand why every single person I have spoken to about getting around here has laughed at my not having a gps system. I think it might be a requirement around here.

We hung around my friend's house for most of the day. Every hour or so we'd announce that we were read to get outside, but it was very cold and rainy, and we were just having a blast catching up and sharing photos. We talked lots while the kids played. She is a massage therapist, and she treated me to some bodywork and a pot of tea. It was great.

In the afternoon we finally got ourselves motivated and headed into Salem to do another leg of MyFK's Historical '08 tour. We started off at the Pirate Museum, and both of Cathy's girls completely freaked and were scared to go tour. MyFK and I went while they kindly waited in the gift shop. They didn't miss much. There were some interesting facts about pirates given by the tour guide, but the stuff in the museum was pretty, ummm....


It was pretty clear the girls were spooked enough by all things Salem that they were going to need us to skip any witch related tours related, as well.
So what to do?
Seek out the LocalYarnStore, of course!

Seed Stitch Fine Yarn, Salem MA (great place, great staff, and kid friendly--hooray!)

I popped in there to get goods to make egg cozies (note to Kathy: okay, okay, OKAY...I am knitting the egg cozies...sheesh! hahahaha).

Actually, MyFK says he wants to knit one of them. Pretty cool. Now that will surprise Grandma. I don't think we've told her that he knits yet. Then she'll have something knit from her GREAT grandchild, too!

I'm using the same yarn that I used to knit my last little two-toned ribbed shrug (Cascade 220 Paints), so of course I thought to myself, hey....since I'll only use a smidge of this for the egg cozy why not buy a second skein of it, and make another shrug with the leftovers? Right?! And then I'll need the contrasting color for the collar and cuffs, right? And oh, hey...they have those AddiTurbo shorty sock needles! Let's get those, too. We need those, right??!


Well, after that, we took the kids to dinner, and in the hour we were there, my girlfriend's eldest daughter mastered the knit stitch and made a little bookmark for herself. Pretty amazing. She could even spot mistakes right away when she saw them, and she totally figured out for herself the importance of even tension. Crazy. The yarn store was already closed, or I'd have gone back and picked her up some needles. I'll have to send her something when I get home.

On the way back to my friend's house we drove through the fancy schmancy parts of Marblehead so I could drool some more over the architecture around here. I love the old homes. We also swung by the lighthouse.

I somehow made it back to Brockton without getting lost in the dark and the rain, and when we got back to the hotel, my other Uncle and his wife had just arrived so we visited them in their hotel room for a bit. More of that tomorrow, but for's late here, and at night I seem to be be still partially stuck on California time. To add to my jet-lag issues, last night a wedding party was booked in our wing of the hotel, and they came banging through at 2am sounding like that had participated in one too many champagne toasts. It took me another two hours to fall asleep after that,mostly because I was so pissed off that the front desk refused to ask them to quite down a bit. They were in the hallways calling back and forth from room to room for almost 30 minutes!! I hope tonight is better!

Anyhow, as a treat while I have been typing this, guess what I've been doing?
Watching the RileyCam.
TheMostImportantGuy, who is pet sitting the new DoggieDogHead, set up his webcam so I could watch Riley chew on a rawhide bone (instead of TheMIG's amp cords---oy). But I have to say. DogCam. Very. Cool.

G'night...tomorrow more sight seeing and seafood.

Saturday, April 05, 2008

snaps on saturday

some of my first knitting

When I was about seven years old, I taught myself how to knit out of a little book I picked up in a kid's toy store in Solvang. One of my first projects were egg cozies, two of them, which I gave to my grandma and grandpa. I remember thinking soft boiled eggs were pretty disgusting (still do--I'm a scrambled dry kinda gal), but I also remember sitting at the table and watching the whole ritual. I can remember my grandmother in her bathrobe in the kitchen, and listening her explain the importance of eggs and timing. I remember the little cups the eggs stood up in, and my grandpa showing me how to crack the top of the egg open.

So when I learned how to knit, and one of the projects in my little knitting book was egg cozies, I went for it. Thirty-Four years later, people....she is still using it. I can hardly believe it. It's some sort of baby colors acrylic, with a grosgrain ribbon threaded through some eyelets (and I am absolutely positive beyond a shadow of a doubt that those are my very first yarn overs. I distinctly remember having to learn how to knit without making holes by mistake, and then learning how to make holes for the first time where I wanted them on purpose).

I feel like a bit of a schlump. Awhile ago I mentioned this on the blog, and I joked out loud that I should probably be making her some new ones. I think it was Mouse that suggested I make new egg cozies, the ones that look like little sweaters that can be found in Weekend Knitting. I bought the book, but didn't knit them. And there I was today with my 90 year old grandma, as she is showing me my first knitting which she still keeps in the top kitchen drawer and still uses (all nice and faded and browned and slightly felted or melted maybe and wayyyy over used) and telling me that she could really use a new one. *sigh*

I might need to sneak out to a LYS store tomorrow.

My mom and dad were both born and raised on the east coast, but they live in California, just around the corner from me, as a matter of fact. We all made this trip out here together for my grandma's 90th birthday. This also happens to be MyFavoriteKid's first time meeting his great-grandmother. While we're out here, the plan is to also get MyFK exposed to some colonial history, since that is what his grade is studying in school this year.

Here are some additional photos from today (photos and text heavy, sorry--but this is as close as I will ever be getting to scrapbooking again).

If you are into tripping down someone else's memory lane, enjoy.....

The farmhouse my mom grew up on, ages 6-13. Turkey farm. Like, thousands of turkeys. Her grandparents lived in the main house, and she lived an upstairs apartment with her mom, dad, and two brothers. Her room was the one behind the solo skinny upstairs window, right there next to the heating vent. She told me a story about that big tree on the right today. A bunch of kids would pull that lowest branch down, one kid would climb up and sit on the branch while the others held it, and then they'd let it go and toss the kid in the branches into the air.
Ah, life before video games. MyFK said he doesn't do things like that because, "they don't make trees like they used to." Hahahahaha.

The original entry road to the farmhouse. Mom used to sit on the wall on the left and pretend it was the horse, even tying up rope to make reigns. Her grandparents eventually retired and sold the farmland to a church. Some of the land is now a shopping center, and most of the property closest to the farmhouse became the church and its parking lot. The church kept the farmhouse as living quarters.

Long before the farm was sold though, my mom's parents built their own house out on the back end of the property. The family moved in there when my mom was a teenager.

Mom helped carry in the bricks for the fireplace.

Let me tell you. I haven't been in this house since I was a little kid, and I walked in and thought I had stepped into a time warp. NOTHING has changed. Seriously. I am so not kidding. Nothing. Ok, well maybe a newer television. But I think the old one was in the same spot. EVERYTHING was the same. Even the placement of knickknacks on the coffee table was the same.

When I was little, I used to stare at these two pictures endlessly. They always disturbed me, but I would still keep staring at them. Morbid curiosity.

I can remember many hours spent in the sunroom, which also has not changed one bit. My strongest memory is of sitting on the couch on the left with my Uncle Rudy, really my great uncle, grandma's brother.

Another little something crafty I had made for my grandma, this time after she taught me how to do plastic canvas needlepoint. I think I was in my late teens when she taught me, just after graduating high school. She even saved the note I had tucked into the box.

Being at her house felt like being in a museum.

United First Parish Church, Quincy. Built in 1828 from local granite (which the town is famous for) and housing the Adams family crypt, where both John and John Quincy Adams are buried (for you international folk, they were our 2nd and 6th presidents, father and son. I wasn't there, but I am sure they did a much better job than our more recent father/son set).

Hancock Cemetery. I love old cemeteries. Love them, could spend hours in them. Today I wished I had thin paper and chalk to make rubbings of some of the old markers. I took some photos, but I haven't quite figured out the new camera enough to take artsyfartys shots yet.

While we were in Quincy, we also stopped by the Adams National Historical Park (closed November through April 19th--drats!) and the Quincy History Museum (only open Monday through Friday--drats again!!).

Feeding the ducks in a really big park in Brockton, which I think was called DW Fields Park. As a kid, mom used to ride her bike here and feed the ducks. I also thought I heard something about her and my dad parking near the lake and necking, too (but mums the word). I have some absolutely priceless photos of my mom and MyFavoriteKid feeding the ducks together today, him being about the same age that she had been then. Golden moments. They are both asleep already, so I can't ask for permission to post the pics, or I would ('cuz I don't ever post without permission).

After the little tour, we had dinner at my aunt and uncle's my cousins. Speaking of food (and not that it is more noteworthy than family), today we had lobster rolls at the Lobster Shack(?) House(?) Hut(?), and I also had my first Dunkin' Doughnut. Hopefully my last. I do not need to roll out of here any bigger than when I got here.

Tomorrow my folks will stay local and hang with family, and MyFk and I take the car up to Marblehead to visit a old friend of mine and do a little sightseeing in Salem.

Friday, April 04, 2008

leg room

I'm wiped.
It's just past 10pm Eastern time, and I am supposed to feel like it's 7pm Pacific.

But it doesn't.

Because we had to wake up at 3am to get to the airport to catch our bungled flight, and 3am Pacific was really 6am Eastern, so....


Ya' know, ever since I have been a gimp, when I take to the friendly skies they always try to stick me in the bulkhead (which I don't like because there is no seat in front of me to stick my bag underneath). I think they assume disabled folk need the extra space or something...?

Today was a slight exception---there was no bulkhead in the tiny commuter plane hopping us to the transfer hub. Instead, they stuck me right behind the first class section, which still gave me more leg room than any other row of coach seats on the plane.

At which point, I wondered (out loud, due to exhausted delirium), why on earth would you seat someone with one leg in the only row that has more leg room???

That cracked up several of my fellow passengers.

Thursday, April 03, 2008

captain, we have a stowaway

ummm, ya' think he knows we're going somewhere??

Never fear. Riley will be in good hands. He's got TheMostImportantGuy looking after him, and when I'm in his hands, I'm always taken good care of :-)

That photo was taken with my new (replacement) camera. I really didn't want to go spending the dough right now, but this trip is for my grandma's 90th birthday/family reunion, and I did not want to risk that getting effed-up on a disposable camera. Besides that, MyFavoriteKid will be expected to present to his classmates a journal showing the historical places we are planning to take him to. it's his replacement classwork. When I spoke to the teacher about it, she told me he could bring the pictures in a disc and she'd display them with her laptop. She's younger than I am. I wonder if she's ever seen film. Hahahaha. I was half expecting her to tell him he should make a PowerPoint presentation or something.

Anyhow, back to the TheMIG and his good hands....
The camera. I told him what features I wanted, he did the research, read the reviews, placed the order, and delivered it to me in time for the trip. He's even going out today to pick up a camera bag for me (I love him so). Because I was supposed to do that today myself and I didn't have time.

Want to know why??

I was originally going to write a post today thanking Expedia for totally frickfracking up my day, but I've calmed down a bit since then. But this morning?? I logged on to print out the itinerary (which I booked in December) only to find that the flights and been canceled and I had been re-booked. And not notified! Whee! That only took me about 2-1/2 hours worth of phone calls to straighten everything out.

It's left my day in shambles, several commitments being canceled or postponed, and many to-and-from-the-airport arrangements to be shuffled around.

Ahhhh, life.

(this is why I bought the RV, by the way...but I booked the flight before I bought it...or trust me, I'd have driven to Boston!)

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

i got a hug from this guy last night :-)

Dr. Wayne Dyer
(photos courtesy of TheMIG)

I was thankful to have even a few seconds with him, being that he was mobbed...

and this is what I said to him (pretty close, best as I can recount):

"I have always appreciated your work, but after a car accident I was in a coma for 2-1/2 weeks, and the television in my hospital room was left tuned to PBS. I was told that your lectures kept being rerun because it was a pledge drive. When I woke up, everyone thought I was I was going to fall apart when I realized I had lost a leg, because I'm a professional dancer. But I woke up knowing that I would just dance on one leg, and I never worried about it. A couple of months out of the hospital, I saw you on tv again, and I instantly knew that I'd heard you while I was in the coma. So I just wanted to say thank you for talking me through the coma, and I really believe you played a big part in my having a positive attitude about it."

Then he asked me if I was still dancing, and I told him yes, with two different companies. He asked me to show him a couple of dance moves LOL. Then he signed a book for me, he gifted me with a cd of his daughter's music, but best of all he gave me a big loving hug.

I'm not the disciple type, but since the accident I've always felt like he holds a special place in my life, so it was really cool to see him speak and to get a chance to meet him.

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

on the fly

I'm so busy today it isn't even funny. Early morning appointments, a visit to the convalescent hospital (with the dog--he did so great, and they loved him so), then back home to get him set up for the evening before I dash out to a lecture in San Francisco.

I did have time to catch up on a couple of blogs just now while slapping on a fresh coat of eyeliner and lipstick, though.

Please go check out this very informative and enlightening post over at David's. It's about eyesight trouble being linked to blog reading.
Seriously. Click through. Do it.