Monday, March 29, 2010

Easter Fun

Saturday, Jake stayed home (post-surgery) and my sister Brenda and I took Isabel to the church down the road to enjoy their Easter Eggstravanaza. Brenda was so taken with the whole thing, especially the fact that it was open to the public, and free!

The had separate areas for Easter egg hunts. This one below was for the babies up to two years old.

They had a carnival-like setting. Booths with fun games for little ones to enjoy.

Ring Toss,

milking a "cow,"

and tossing horse shoes were just some of the fun things she did.

Can you see the frog mid-air in the picture below?

Below was the section for kids in Kindergarten to 2nd grade. The limit was 15 eggs per child. I thought "good luck with that."

David arrived just as they let the kids go. Isabel diligently counted "One, two three.." up to 15, and stopped.

Here she proudly shows off her 15. A church volunteer dumped more eggs into her basket and Isabel replied "But I already have 15." The woman told her to go ahead and get more, so she did.

Before leaving to go home and meet the nurse for Jake, we all stopped to enjoy a free meal of hot dogs, chips, cookies and choice of beverage. Free.

We had a fun family morning.

Sunday, March 28, 2010


Hello All,

Jacob updated our Adobe and now I cannot see any of the books I recently read, on the right sidebar, can you? Please let me know. It's driving me nuts and since I am off from work all week, I cannot check from another computer to see if it's just ours not letting me see the widget. That's the first update.

The second update is a little lengthier and explains why I have been away for over a week. Jacob had outpatient surgery. I won't go into the details other than to say, it was a scheduled thing and it ended up being not what I thought. We are currently dealing with open-wound healing. He has a wound, it's open for the world to see and, after being taught by a nurse, I get to clean and pack it.

It's scary and overwhelming and panic-inducing. I called my eldest sister, in a hysterical crying fit after first being taught to clear the wound, telling her what was going on. She called her man to explain what was going on. He left work, brought her gas $$ and insisted she drive up. Now, Brenda does not drive by herself anywhere. Anywhere. And here she is, 3.5 hours of drive time to come be a support system for us. She has. She took nurse's aid classes and is not even a little squeamish. Jacob agreed to let her be in the room when we clean the wound, and she's hysterical funny with the calmness and the matter-of-factness of it all. Professional terms be damned!

We (kids and I) have this next week off; they for Spring Break and I for vacation for the surgery. Brenda will stay as long as she wants. Hopefully his healing will be fast.

I'll keep you updated.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Nocturne in C Sharp Minor

My son takes keyboarding in school. Keyboarding music, not typewriting. They are currently working in the Romantic period of music. His selection is "Nocturne in C Sharp Minor" by Chopin. Every time I hear him practice this at home, I stop what I am doing to secretly listen. I love it. He actually agreed to let me tape him this morning. Here it is. He's still learning (this is his 3rd year of school lessons - no private lessons yet), but it sounds lovely.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

The Elegance of the Hedgehog

The Elegance of the Hedgehog Pictures, Images and Photos

I just finished this book by Muriel Barbery and wanted to write about it while it was fresh in my mind.

This translated-from-the-French New York Times Best Seller is the story of two females living in the same building in Paris; 12 year old Paloma, a tenant, and 50-something Renee, the concierge of the building. The "women" (for lack of a better term for a 12 year old) are as different on the outside as possible. One is young, cute, rich. The other ugly, fat, matronly, a poor concierge. Despite this, these two are actually more alike than they know. They both try to hide their true selves, their true natures. They are both extremely intelligent, trying to pass as anything but.

Renee, the matronly concierge, is really the one I was drawn to more. She holds a position that others see with contempt. She's lower class, she's invisible. Little do the rich tenants of the building know that this poor dumpy thing is smarter than all of them combined. The odd thing is that Renee perpetuates the stereotype of "Concierge=Stupid." She wants them to think she is dumb. She does not want to be found out. She privately mocks the tenants and their utter stupidity, but, answer me this. What is the point of mocking someone when they don't know they are being mocked? For me, none. Zero, zip. No point. Self-satisfaction was all Renee strives for.

Paloma was 12, and slightly obnoxious in her attitude that "the world is pointless, everyone is stupid, and therefore I am going to kill myself at age 13" She had some amusing thoughts, but, being 12, I never took her seriously enough.

Both women eventually meet due to the intervention of a kind, quiet new owner of the 4th floor flat, Mr. Kakuro Ozu. He quietly sees through both their facades and cares not a bit that one is 12 and one is just a concierge. His wonderful way about him opens both women's hearts to new friendships and platonic love.

I won't say more on the subject. The writing was thought-provoking (or should I say, The translation was thought-provoking? Translated books are hard to really touch, as you saw with my dual reading of "The Shadow of the Wind."), sometimes a little pompous (is it pompous because I may not understand the concepts? Most likely.) and for me, a sweet read.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

It's Her Fault!

See, it's my sister, Brenda's fault! :) She totally spoils my kids. It's not me; I'm a curmudgeon (and cheap to boot.)

Today Isabel received a Birthday Box Bonanza from her Titi (auntie) Brenda, my older sister. (She's the only one older than me, the other 3 are younger. )

Brenda kind-of went a little crazy. OK a LOT crazy with the gift giving. She asked me to take a video of Isabel opening her gifts. The quality is low because I wanted as much time as possible to tape it. It's about 7 minutes (an eternity to our even-shrinking patience for information; but that's a post for another time). Also, I'm kind-of loud. Mainly because I am right by the speaker. Also, I am usually loud.

Woo. I'm loud. Anyway...

Eating Goldfish crackers with her fancy gloves.

Her Moxie doll with skates

Fancy Nancy

Isabel's matching outfit.

Ooh La La!

The rest of the gifts: A bunny, four Fancy Nancy books, a flower headband, some more headbands, barrettes a necklace and some ceramic pieces to paint. (She's mad at me because I won't let her use her water colors on them.)

And here's where she was when I came back downstairs after having gone up to load the video to YouTube.

Thank you Brenda. Loca!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Round 2 Part 2: Vote for the Worst Whedon Character

Part two of round 2 of the voting is up on Buffyfest.

GO VOTE for the worst of the lot.

¿Que Pasa? Nada.

Nothing new, peeps. Well, nothing interesting. Made some cookies (posts over on the other blog) and the dryer has decided to not dry as well. We're not sure if it's the dryer itself or the vents. We unplugged it, moved it, cleaned the inside area of the dryer, used the vaccum to clean the hose that goes out of the house, but still no go. The only thing we have not done is clean the vent on the roof. Why?

YOU want to climb up on the roof? I certainly don't. *sigh* (that's my mom, not me, btw) lol

So we might call around and see some companies that will do it. Or maybe David will be nuts and do it himself. We'll see.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Obsession? You Say it Like it's a BAD thing...

Yea, I have my little obsessions. Who doesn't? Some people bake, some people bling things (:P) some people like Star Wars (waving at everyone), I like the Whedonverse (that's anything Joss Whedon created, btw: Buffy, Angel, Firefly, Serenity, Dr. Horrible and ok... yea, ok, Dollhouse.)

Speaking of, behold my calendar at work and who is on March.

Rawr. He's just....rawr. Yes, I have a Buffy calendar at work. No one has any idea who the heck these people are, except SMG.

We also have a game called "Little Big Planet" on the PS3. AWESOME game. Non-violent, creative, just fun for the entire family. You can play the worlds that come with the game, or create your own and upload them on-line. David did an on-line search of any worlds with the word "Buffy" in it. Yep. There are several. Jacob attested to the lameness of most, but still...funny.

The world below was a real easy one where you "stake" the vampires (vampires on wheels, btw. It's a game thing. Never mind)...where was I? Oh, you poof the vampires by shooting them...with paint balls. There's no violence in this game, so this is is gory as they get.

So up here we have, from left to right, Xander, Cordy, Angel, Willow and Giles. You play as Buffy, only Isabel's character is some chick from another video game. She didn't "Buffy" her character up.

Oh, voting for part four of round one of Buffyfest's March Madness is up. Click here, but remember, you're voting for the one you HATE more, ok?

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Fitzwilliam Darcy, Gentleman

You may not know this, but I am slightly obsessed with Jane Austen and her characters. Almost as much as I am obsessed with Joss and his 'verse. Almost.

I crave that era; the romance, the propriety, the manners (oh, the manners), the politeness, the duties, the language. I read her books and for a moment, I am someone else, somewhere else. I yearn and then am saddened when I have to come back to reality.

My son and husband roll their eyes when I pop into the dvd, yet again, "Pride and Prejudice" (the good version: the BBC one with Colin Firth, not the Keira Knightly piffle) or Emma Thompson's "Sense & Sensibility."

There were books of Ms. Austen's I could not stand; "Mansfield Park." BLEGH! I was so happy for it to be over. "Northanger Abbey" is right at the bottom too.

I read the books and want more, but we'll never get more and it saddens me.

I started looking through the 'net, looking for more; other people's writings based off her works. I read reviews on some that were horribly written, some that were like soft porn. Jane would roll in her grave.

I read reviews of Pamela Aidan's books on Paperback Swap. The majority were good reviews. They thought Ms. Aidan did Jane proud, so I went and ordered the three from Paperback Swap.

The trilogy follows the life of Mr. Darcy through what is going on in "Pride & Prejudice." We see it all from his pov. His thoughts, his attitude, his absences are all explained because we are following him, not the Bennet family. It's great fun!

Book 1: "An Assembly Such as This", sets the stage for meeting Darcy when he arrives at Netherfield and what he does during his time there. We see what he thinks of Elizabeth, etc. We meet many behind-the -scenes people, including his extremely wise and funny valet, Fletcher. We also see his relationship with Georgiana in a closer light.

Book 2: "Duty and Desire" was a bit of filler for me, unfortunately. My least favorite of the three. It is written, on purpose states the author, in the Gothic sense (an homage to Catherine Morland's love of this style of writing, in "Northanger Abbey.") But it's the craziness and vileness of the upper crust in this book that opens Darcy's eyes to the fact that station and money really are not everything when looking for someone to love; when looking for people of character to befriend. The books takes place in the months that he is absent from P&P.

Book 3: "These Three Remain" wraps up the story. We see how the Darcy who proposed to Elizabeth is transformed to the man he is at the end of P&P. The man who treats Elizabeth's aunt and uncle with respect, the man who saves Lydia's reputation, the man who does anything for Elizabeth. We don't truly understand the transformation in P&P. Elizabeth certainly doesn't, but in this book, Ms. Aidan writes a satisfactory background story to show us how he is changed.

They're not grand novels, but they're good ones. Ms. Aidan's maiden voyage into writing was a success in my humble opinion. Although I forwarded the books in the Paperback Swap system, I think I will eventually buy them for myself, to put alongside Ms. Austen's books. For when I need my "fix."

Monday, March 8, 2010


Say hello to Isabel's Build-A-Bear creation, Hoppy.

Hoppy enjoys the sunset after dinner by the water in New Smyrna Beach.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Buffyfest March Madness; The Worst of the Lot

I am LATE in this post. The birthday cake week o' pain threw me for a loop.

Buffyfest is having its March Madness Tourney. This year, we're voting for the Worst of the Lot; that character you really really could not stand.

We're still in the first round, but two voting sessions have already closed. Here's the link to Round One; Part 3.

Go Vote!

P.S. Xander? Xander got votes over DeWitt? Don't make me pinch you! And DOYLE has 103 votes for being the worst? Harumph, I Say!!

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Party Party

We had Isabel's birthday party today at KidTropolis, a Chuck-E-Cheese type place. I brought with us the cakes I made , and they took care of the rest. Aaaahhhhhh!

Hi Caroline and daddy Adam.

DDR King.

Baby DDR? :)

Time for Pizza.

Back for some more fun after pizza. Then, it was cake time.

After the party was over, the familia stayed a little while longer to play more games. Jake is apparently the king of the ticket game where you have to hit the button to stop the light at just the exact moment to get tons of tickets. He got 300 tickets twice for Isabel and then 500 tickets twice for my niece Lyric.
The family came over for a little bit, to have coffee and be goofy.

My baby sister Lissette.

Not sure what exactly is going on in this picture.

The long nights (after midnight, twice during work nights) of baking and decorating were well worth it to see her smile. She saw the cakes in the morning, hugged me and said "Thanks mom!!" She is SO AWESOME.

Monday, March 1, 2010

Happy 6th Birthday Isabel!!

Happy 6th Birthday to our sweet, wonderful, beautiful, six-going-on-six little sweetheart, Isabel! You are truly a gift.