June 29, 2010


Do you think it means I take too many pictures of my kid, when after a big hit, he looks over at me while running to first to make sure I got a shot of it?


I've had a lot on my mind lately, so am really looking forward to the long weekend ahead: sun on my skin, fat toes in the water, and packing away my worries until next week.

June 28, 2010


3 years ago, we planted a butterfly garden.  We researched native plants; we read about what types of butterflies like which types of food; and we drew out the plans and even took pictures of each plant so we'd know which was which after they'd all grown up.  Which is why it's pretty gratifying to see the monarchs flitting happily around our yard these days. As if I needed one more reason to love summer.
And I'd be remiss if I didn't say, "GO, BRAZIL GO!"

June 27, 2010

Why I love summer

Because some days you decide to get out of the rain by going to see a movie you've been waiting for.
And then you discover when you leave the movie that the weather cleared up and there's still time for you to get to the end of the Cedarburg Strawberry Festival.

June 26, 2010

Afternoon sun

Because some things are more important than keeping your manicure looking perfect.

June 25, 2010

God is funny

The first time I came to do some work in Ohio, I had the crap scared out of me when I was innocently driving along the interstate and came upon this:
I was so frightened, I had to get a photo of it, and got my chance during a traffic slowdown.  Later I learned that it was referred to by the locals as the Butter Jesus. And while this is what my religion also believes in and all (Jesus, not butter, although that's pretty good too), this thing was HUGE. And scary.  Scared the hell right out of me, you might say.  Maybe even the bajeezus, if you will.

But I speak in the past tense, because a weekish ago, lightning struck it.
Now, this is ironic because, well, it was Jesus.  And it wasn't arson or some hate crime... this was the very hand of God striking down a giant, buttery-yellow scary Jesus statue in the middle of nowhereville Ohio.  Apparently God thought it was scary too? So it's kind of funny, right?

This is what it looked like when I drove by today:

But the irony improves when you realize what's actually within EYESIGHT of it...
That's right, the one and only, the original Larry Flynt Hustler store.  Just proof, in case you needed any, that God's got a pretty incredible sense of humor.

June 24, 2010

Later alligator

Bye, Milwaukee.  I've gone to spend some quality time in Ohio. See you on Friday!

June 23, 2010

3 in the books

Tonight was our third night in a row of baseball.  And while he hit well and paid attention on the field,
Tonight was definitely the tipping point in day camp + 3 nights of baseball being just a bit too much for a 5 year old.
Thankfully, the next few days are super low key for him, and next week we only have the Tuesday night league.

Things that make me smile

Some days it's good to think about what makes you happy.  So here are 10 off the top of my head.
  1. Beach walks
  2. Reading Charlie and the Chocolate Factory to C-man before bed
  3. Blue eyes
  4. Farmers' markets and CSA boxes
  5. Baseball hits
  6. Smell of sunscreen on a warm summer day
  7. Beet salads
  8. Wednesday cleaning days
  9. Emails from old friends
  10. Freshly painted toes

June 22, 2010

I bring to you, the Orange Elephants

Tonight started the school baseball league.
Last year he was in this league, and was afraid to hit unless he had the tee. This year, he's one of the big hitters.
Last year he was 4 and was so shy about talking to anyone.  This year, he's got his hat backwards and chumming and showing off with all his pals.

What a difference a year makes.

Brighter days ahead

I've had a splitting headache for over a week now.  And by "splitting headache", I mean I-can-barely-see-straight-because-I've-been-slammed-upside-the-head-with-a-sledgehammer, splitting headache.  I've been on amoxocillan for 4 days, and I'm not sure it's done much beyond making my stomach hurt.  Well, to be fair, my lungs don't hurt by the strenuous task of breathing today, so that's been a 100% improvement on my life.  But I always get such weird dreams when I'm taking antibiotics; which has the added bonus of keeping me up all night.  So at least I've got that going for me.

Only 2 more baseball games, 2 flights, a rental car, a hotel stay, and a day of delivering training with an excited smile on my face to go, and it's Saturday.  Now just might be the time to take up drinking.

June 21, 2010

Another tie

Another amazing night of softball.
This game was exceptional, because, he got to be the grand slam hitter for 2 innings, and the lead-off for one.
 "Tigers, ROAR!"

Stolen Shots

The thing about me is, I hate car rides. I hate airplane rides. I essentially hate sitting in one place with absolutely no control over anything.  If I drive, I'm quite a bit better. But riding? I'm the one saying, "Are we there YET?" every 10 minutes.

So yesterday, on the way home, with C-man watching the iPod and Beerman listening to golf on the radio, I decided to amuse myself.  It all started with us playing a game of "I'm thinking of an animal..." and Beerman missing the exit.  So, we took a back road for a couple miles to get back on track. But that's when I spotted round hay bales in the sunlight and shouted, "STOP! I need a picture!"  So, of course, he did.  And then turned around so I could get a better angle.

Since I couldn't make him stop that often (he had a GPS time to beat, after all!) I started my personal game of, "What kind of picture could I get as we're whizzing by at 45 mph?"
Or 75 mph?
And when I ran out of decent things to take pictures of, I just turned the camera on myself.
All just further proof that I really need to clean that bird doo off my mirror.  Or that my man-hands are kind of scary.  Or probably that I should just get my own iPod to watch.

June 20, 2010

Graduation Party

Happy Fathers Day!

To my husband, whose endless creative bedtime stories and on-the-spot games make every day a fun, interesting, and new one for our son. And for the obvious love he has for his very own Mini-Me. 

And to my own Dad.  Whose countless hours playing catch or going to the doctor or changing the car oil or building that one more project I needed help with taught me the very meaning of love and dependability.

Happy Fathers Day to all the dads in my life.

June 19, 2010


I can't think of anything that screams "June" more than getting red stained hands from eating juicy, sun-warmed farmers' market strawberries while watching a baseball game on a Saturday morning.

June 18, 2010

My day

After a 6th solid day of a headache, and the 2nd day of feeling like I'm breathing through a screen, I took a trip to the doctor. Amoxicillan, take me away...

Flight Risk

A couple of weeks ago, a mourning dove took over the robin's vacant nest on our grape arbor right outside our dining room window. Since then, we've been on full dove watch, and got super excited when the tiny baby emerged.

And then as the parents moved out a bit more to make room for the nest, we learned there were really two babies.  While I know some people actually hunt these things (what for, I might ask), we have been spending countless hours watching them hang out.

We watch them hobble around their nest.

We watch them preen.

We even check out their butts when that's all we can see in the grape arbor (that is in desperate need of a trim, but we can't touch until the birds leave it alone).

But Mama is always there with a careful eye on us, cooing her sweet coo when she feels safe.

A new nest has been built within eyesight of the old one where the parents are hanging out.  And the way the babies are flapping their wings and flitting little by little around the arbor, we expect they'll be gone by the end of the weekend.  But it's been really sweet to watch them.  And if we don't get any grapes again this year, oh well.  I guess we didn't have to wait until Christmas to get our 2 turtle doves this year.

June 17, 2010

13 More Random Thursday Thoughts

  1. This week, I had 2 days of being entirely alone while Beerman worked up north and C-man spent some time with his Nana. And I'm not ashamed to admit, I didn't entirely hate it.
  2. During those 2 days, I got a massage and watched several movies.
  3. I did get a bit worried for a moment when the neighborhood started to flood from the 3" of rain in an hour, and had visions of flooded carnage all over again. But thankfully, no flooding.
  4. The ChemLawn guy showed up at 3 houses on my block today. I want to go knock on those peoples' doors and turn on their TVs and scream, "Look at the Gulf of Mexico images! Do you see those dolphins huddled in a corner trying to escape with their lives? How do you think that fricking fertilizer is made?!? And by the way, when they spray paint 'Drains directly to lake' in front of the drain, they're not kidding!"
  5. Our Mama Dove has moved on to a new nest within eyesight of the old nest because her two babies are too big. They've been stretching their fuzzy wings all day, and it's so stinking cute. I'm just waiting for one of them to try its wings out.  In the meantime, I'll just enjoy their cooing.
  6. I gave Beerman his Fathers Day present of an LCD projector early because we won't be home on Fathers Day. It's supposed to rain buckets all weekend long, which is a bummer, because I'd really hoped we could watch movies in the gazebo Saturday night.
  7. I bought a Thailand travel book. Next year is our 10th anniversary, and I think it deserves something fun. The more I research Thailand, the more I want to go.
  8. Next week, C-man has a baseball game on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday. Seriously, this is oppressive.
  9. Today is our first CSA box.  Spinach, strawberries, and basil - oh my!  We also signed up for eggs this year, so that's super cool. I love the weekly CSA box.
  10. We've dehydrated some food in the past, but Beerman is convinced that we need to do a better job of preserving the stuff we don't use. I think it's a pretty solid idea.
  11. My Blackberry was broken, so I was without it for a few days. I really liked not having it. That just confirms I need to shut it off more.  Slowly, but surely, I'm weaning off my technology addiction.
  12. Remember my 23andme genome project participation I'd talked about? Apparently one part of it is a relative finder. And several people have made contact with me to share genomes.  The best is one of my fourth cousins (we have one set of the same great-great-great grandparents) who I've been emailing back and forth has 75% of the same genetic makeup as me.  She lives in Bern, Switzerland.  And while we don't know which great-great-great grandparent set we have in common yet, she is taking the surnames I've given her and going to do some archive digging to find out who we have in common.  She also has some German background, so it might be that line too.  But seriously, how cool is that?
  13. Do you think, now that we're so close and all, you know, sharing an identical 12th gene, that it'd be too soon to ask if I can visit? For a few months?

June 15, 2010

B-rated insomniac

I've had insomnia lately.  My whole life I've had trouble sleeping for various reasons.  And I can attribute it to a gazillion things, but one thing remains the same: me lying in bed in the middle of the night, wide awake, while my mind is racing to hell and beyond.

I know there are drugs for times like this.  A while back, you might remember, my rheumatologist gave me Ambien to be able to block out the pain and be able to sleep, and it turned out so abysmally, I won't take the stuff again.  And since I've been pretty successful with valerian pills, I didn't look for anything else. Until recently.  So the best I can determine, my options at 2 a.m. are A) Lie there thinking crazy thoughts, B) Read a book, or C) Watch a movie.  Usually I go to the book.  But this past week, I've gone to letter C, and taken advantage of the Netflix streaming movies.

Now Netflix watch instantly does not offer the best movie selection out there.  You can't see the latest and greatest in DVD releases.  No, no, no, nothing that fancy.  It's all b-rated or documentaries or foreign or old.  As a result, I've been watching extraordinary movies like Carolina, Miss Conception, and I can't believe I'm admitting this - Fired Up!  And since we don't have cable, I've also learned that the Jimmy Fallon show is replayed at 4 a.m., and that they still sell the spray paint for your bald head.

I swear my IQ has dropped at least 10 points.  I just pray nobody notices me sleeping at my desk at 2p.m.

June 14, 2010

Around the yard

Our weekend was so much fun, and didn't have any major house breakdown projects to worry about.  Sunday wrapped it up beautifully when we got to see the baby dove emerge from the nest formerly built and occupied by our robins.  This is the sweetest, calmest mama dove ever, and it's been fabulous to hear her coo at sundown.

We got to marvel at the echinacea that started to bloom.

Of course, we played our final moments of t-ball, barefooted in pajamas.

And in a quiet Sunday evening moment, I sneaked into the neighbor's yard to get a shot of her daisies.
I hate that it had to end, but am really thankful for the relaxating time we had.

June 13, 2010

Carnival fun

Yesterday was the annual Mequon-Thiensville Lionsfest. This year, C-man brought a friend.  That made him so happy.  But imagine our glee at not having to ride the rides!