25 February 2010

I might be that mom that you hate

I'm not going to get into some SAHM/WOHM whose-grass-is-greener debate.  Whatever.

I am a single parent who works full time, and life is just harder in a one-parent household, case closed.  This is the life that I chose for myself, and I'm okay with that, but there are times when it's really, really hard to do all the juggling.
Gabriel's dad lives outside the area, by about a three hour drive.  I have to work to live, to eat, to pay my rent.  Do I get sick time? Sure.  But not infinitely.

So there are days when I send Gabriel to school, and I know if I was a stay-at-home mom, I'd keep him home.
Worse, there are days when I know Gabriel shouldn't go, but I give him some cold medicine and send him anyways.  He'll be good on drugs until it's nap time, they can let him sleep a little extra, if he's too sick for school when he wakes up at three?  Well at that point I've managed to get a whole day of work in, and I can maybe even get my mom to pick him up. 
Anyhow, these are choices that I know I wouldn't make if I had more flexibility with my working hours, or a two-income household, or if I stayed home full time.  And I know that you, other parents at Gabriel's school, probably hate me for sending my sick kid.   And I'd be annoyed too, roles reversed. 
But we have to eat, yknow?

24 February 2010

Diptych - Bold

I do my diptychs in collaboration with Kellee.
Explanation here.
I had a REALLY hard time with this week's theme.  I ended up with this pic of Gabriel, which I'm actually more likely to call fierce, or ridiculous, but it's sort of bold too, right? Maybe?
If you are working on your own, feel free to add to the Mr. Linky.
Next week Kellee and I are working with 'rough' as our theme, or you can choose your own.

23 February 2010

Morality

I often find myself defending people with whom I disagree.
I happen to have been born and raised in California, in the latter part of the 20th century.  My parents taught me that everyone deserves fair treatment and a fair chance, that we can't judge based on skin color or gender or sexual orientation or disability.  My parents taught me to ask questions.  My parents taught me to learn from others.  My parents taught me to stand up for myself.
And I believe what my parents taught me.
So I can't say for certain, that if I was raised in a different place and time, or by different people, that I wouldn't believe different things.  How do I know that if I was brought up on a cotton plantation in 1822 that I wouldn't just accept slavery as a fact, and believe that this different race of people was truly worth less?
I mean, I believe what I was taught, right?
I've never looked at the things that my parents taught me when they raised me, and viewed them as anything less than the truth, and while I would hope that I'm a strong enough person to figure things out for myself had I been brought up differently, I certainly don't have any evidence to support that claim.
So I have a hard time judging people who were raised differently from me, by different people, or in different times, as 'bad' people.  They were just following a different set of rules.  If we're talking about the present, I think that now it's our job to teach a new set of rules.
I disagree with many, many beliefs held by others, but that doesn't mean that I think those others are bad.
There is a difference between ignorance and evil.

I believe that people are good. 
I believe that even when they're doing things that society in general or I personally view as wrong, they think either that they have no choice, or that they're doing the right thing.

I believe in love.

I believe in tolerance.

I believe in education. 

I believe in understanding.

I believe in raising the best children we know how to raise.

I believe that it is our job as a society to take care of our own, including our mentally ill, our criminals, our homeless.

I believe that everyone deserves a chance.

Conversely, I don't believe that anyone has a right to infringe on the rights of others.

University of California


Gabriel telling me the letters on the UCSC sign.  Thanks kiddo.
My new camera (<-that's an Amazon Affiliate link) has HD Video capabilities and stuff.  It's neat.  I recommend.  The images are good quality too, plus it's TINY AND CUTE.

22 February 2010

I love the interwebs

Five Bloggers Whom I Adore
--
Terra/ZoeyJane (@zoeyjane)- She says anything, I say, "Me too."  There are all of these inarticulable thoughts and ideas that bounce and float around in my head and keep me up at night and hold me back and push me forward and make me want to scream and make me want to laugh.
I suppose they must be in her head too,  because she catches them and twists them into lovely, perfect words.  And I think, "Yeah. Me too."

MariaMelee (@mariamelee)- A calm, perfect voice in a sea of chaos.  She's in turns wicked funny, and thoughtful, and joyous.  She makes me think.  She makes me smile.
Plus I'm pretty sure our boys would adore one another.

Lora/Fever (Used to be Twitter, and then quit it for internet porn or something)- In turns wickedly funny and awesomely insightful. We have long, rambly ranting email conversations.  Her words are magic and champagne bubbles.  I fantasize about meeting her and hugging her for reals.

María/Blissed (@maria0305)- I adore María for lots and lots of reasons.  One is that she manages to be simultaneously bad-ass and kind.  I can't help but admire a woman who knows her opinions and stands up for them.  I like her bewbs I value our friendship.

Jenny, The Bloggess (@thebloggess)- Everybody loves Jenny. If they don't they deserve to be stabbed Everyone loves Jenny because she is liquid awesome dipped in rainbows.  She's one of the most genuinely sweet people I've ever met and she is absolutely gracious to everyone (including me) who just wants to bask in the presence of her amazingness.

19 February 2010

Some more #sstoa moments, begging to be shared

All pics that appear in this post were stolen from Biddy.
 
This. This was our trip.  See my wide-eyed disbelief?  See Julia TELLING IT LIKE IT IS?  See Briya looking on in amusement?

 
HE PUT ME IN A HALF NELSON!
Douchebags are dangerous, and attracted to cameras.
Once again, there is SO MUCH AMAZING going on here.  I was really glad to see that it was Holly's hand on my tit, as I thought it was orange dude.  Also? I love Julia, for obvious reasons.
Julia was made to duck in the cab. We were amused.
NO UNCLE BAD TOUCH!
JULIA HULK SMASH!
I twitpic'ed my bewbs for Danielle, since she couldn't be there.
That's what good friends do, dammit.
 
This is a....dildo pogo stick.  And I have a lot of problems with it.  Not the least of which, it looks like you could cause yourself SERIOUS bodily harm on this thing.

After I gave a live demonstration on THE GOOD WAY to pull hair, spank, and maybe a little bit of choking (using Holly as my lovely assistant), we collapsed  in an exhausted heap. Because that shit is EXHAUSTING.

18 February 2010

Virgin Tin Lady

As you may have gathered, I spent last weekend on the beach in San Diego with the lovely ladies Julia, Holly, Biddy and Briya.  Julia wrote a couple of excellent posts regarding same. Posts have been written about this trip of magic by Jules, here and here.

And she about covered mostly things, I think.

Also I recognize that I said I would vlog this but I chickened out at the last minute because you don't REALLY want to see/hear me talk.  And I don't REALLY want you to examine me for odd tics.
AND. I recognize this story would probably make more sense with me explaining it with real-live words that TALK that you can HEAR, but you'll just have to bear with the written version.

So!  Saturday!  We're all hungover and drunk and stuff and I'm looking at my feet like MAH GOD I NEED A PEDICURE and Julia is like ME TOO LET'S GET PEDIS THIS IS A GOOD IDEA.  So we walk down the street aways on the theory that we are in Touristy Touristville Full of Tourism and there will be a nail salon thusly soon.
First one we hit has a lone lady in there who simply cannot help us, what with the lunar new year upcoming, etc.  I would like to note that her services menu included the following: Virgin Tin Ladies, Virgin Tin Gentlemen, ROLLA SET.  I tried googling Virgin Tin Ladies/Gentlemen, but I only get Julia and I referencing THIS THAT JUST HAPPENED.
Second nail place! HOKAY!  I'm sitting in my massage chair getting my toesies painted and that's all good and then I'm done and the lady, wait.  This lady:
Virgin Tin Lady
Okay, so, this lady, as pictured above, is like, HEY LET'S DO YOUR NAILS NOW, and I'm like um...I don't wanna?  But it turned out to be easier to just get the nails painted than to argue.
(An aside:  I don't get my nails done because I fuck them up pretty much instantly, and, surprise! I fucked them up, WHILE WE WERE STILL IN THE SALON, and then she fixed them and I FUCKED THEM UP AGAIN, which is why I don't get my nails done)
 
So there's some dolphins leaping out of the wall and this lady, while she's painting my nails, is telling Biddy, "I give you Brazilian back room real quick professional" and Biddy's saying, "I think I'm good thanks!"
Then she strong-armed Jules into gettin' her nails did via same methods, and tried to then boss her into an eyebrow wax.  Biddy fed Julia her birth control, cuz that's what friends are for.
And then I'm sitting there and this lady tells me, "I wax your eyebrow real quick, real professional."
"I don't wax my eyebrows."
"You don't wax your eyebrow? You look like retarded kid.  You look like Downs Syndrome." (Looking around at other girls for agreement) "Am I right? You don't wax your eyebrow, it looks Downs Syndrome kid, it makes you look retarded."

I could get into all kinds of things about this little monologue, but I'm only going to focus on one aspect:   I HAVE NO EYEBROWS TO WAX.
SERIOUSLY.
I HAVE LIKE SEVEN EYEBROW HAIRS, WHICH I MUST AUGMENT DAILY WITH PENCIL.
My eyebrows start like, halfway over my eye, where they gather for like, 10 consecutive hairs, and then peter out again before they get to the end.  I'm afraid to tweeze the damn things, don't even get me started on waxing.  Here's a post where I talk specifically about my lack of eyebrows.
And I can even do you one better than that because here's a pic I snapped about an hour before The Eyebrow Incident:
 
I HAVE NO EYEBROWS TO WAX

17 February 2010

Eden Fantasys PR FAIL

EdenFantasys
(click to embiggen)

Dude. Just. SERIOUSLY????
You're seriously sending me an email telling me that I can't get laid?
SERIOUSLY???
Hey Grace! No one else wants to fuck you, so how about you go fuck yourself??
Not cool guys, not cool at ALL.

Diptych - Cold

I do my diptychs in collaboration with Kellee.
Explanation here.
Funny thing about this week's is that 'cold' is a little hard to capture in pictures when you're in sunny California.  I'm sure everyone in blizzard land feels a bit differently.
My heart-shaped ice cubes are courtesy of Target $1 bins circa Valentine's Day Ought Nine.
If you are working on your own, feel free to add to the Mr. Linky.
Next week Kellee and I are working with 'bold' (Rhyming FTW!) as our theme, or you can choose your own.

11 February 2010

Gone Fishing

Starting today, and ending sometime this weekend assuming I don't die, I'll be spending the weekend with Holly, Julia and Biddy.

SHENANNIGANS.

Here's a picture:
 
Yeah, he's pissed.  Hey! Here's another picture!
That's the dress I didn't wear on Tuesday.  Here's the dress I did wear:
 

Fun fact: I often use twitter to pick my clothes for me.  You are missing out on making decisions about how I appear in public.
Anyhow.
Yeah.
I'll be back.

10 February 2010

Diptych - Sad


I do my diptychs in collaboration with Kellee.
Explanation here.
If you are working on your own, feel free to add to the Mr. Linky.
Next week Kellee and I are working with 'cold' as our theme, or you can choose your own.

08 February 2010

BENBENBEN

Last week I forwarded you a text from last night:
And you responded, almost immediately, with this (click to embiggen, I can't figure this shit out):
(This is the link you give in your email)
I don't really feel that further why-I-love-you evidence is required.

BEN!
I love you to pieces.
Seriously.

Fall of 2000: You live upstairs from me and my roommate Paris in the dorms. Between the three of us we drink enough that rightfully at least one of us should be dead or in jail.  Miraculously, WE ALL SURVIVE.
We live delightfully within walking distance from each other for four straight years, even when we both decided to move downtown.  You had a permanent sleeping space wherever we were.  You always counted as the unspoken roommate.  You were one of the hosts when we threw parties. 
Dude.
Once when I was out of town you peed my bed.
And didn't tell me about it for two years.
And I still adore you.
College ended, I moved to Chico to become an unwed mother, you moved to whereverthefuck Dartmouth is to be a professional Jew.  We didn't see each other and didn't see each other and didn't see each other and then! Maren and Nick got married!
So you met my baby boy and EVERYONE wanted to talk about how giant my bewbs were and we drank and laughed and danced and everything was just like always.
And then we didn't see each other and didn't see each other and didn't see each other some more.
So I came to Boston!
Ben Loves Me

Where we drank and talked about my bewbs and wandered around hungover eating kosher bacon salt and everything was just like always.
For your 20th birthday, we got you a 40-year-old stripper who did a naked handstand onto your face and permanently destroyed your ability to smell Lubriderm lotion without cowering in the corner like a scared little boy.  I wore a police helmet.
I can't buy you a scaggy old stripper this year, and that makes me sad.
This is the 9th year I've wished you happy birthday.
Because we are old.
I hope you have the best birthday ever.
I love you to pieces.

Say Something Nice - GREEN SWEATER DAY

That was a nice idea, was it not?  Let's say something nice about GREEN SWEATER DAY.

*She wears very cute clothes.
*She's intelligent.
*She tries really hard.
*She's well intentioned, I think. Maybe.

That's......that's all I got. I tried.

06 February 2010

The Ranch

The Ranch

This is where I grew up, only, y'know, looking like it did 25 years ago.  So all those little trees planted here and there are now GREAT BIG MONSTER TREES, and this view doesn't actually exist.
This is the view from my grandparents' deck, by the way.  So.
1.  My aunt Rebecca lives in these woods.  In what used to be a cabin but now has indoor plumbing and bedrooms and stuff.  There is a path.
2.  This is my parents' barn, which is of the storage variety, as opposed to the animal kind.
3.  This ridge top is our property line up thattaways. And now there's a house. Right.There.  They were dumping garbage and growing mary-jay-juana on our land until my dad and my brother and my uncles walked up there all tall and menacing like and dug out all their plants and had some strong words.  That's one of the things about living in the sticks: dope growing squatters.
4.  This is my parents house! Hi!  I grew up there!  It's the original farm house from way-back-when.
5.  That's the rosebush.  I'm pointing it out because my sister used to charge Duncan and me rent to crawl in there and sit.  And we would pay.  She also fed us thistle down and maple leaves. Salted.
6.  That's the barn of the animal-holding variety.  Except it's since been torn down and rebuilt and now it's used primarily for lumber storage.  And baby chickens.  There used to be bee hives out back, before my mom became deathly allergic.  Julia and I used to jump out of the hay loft, over the bee hives, and into the grass.
7.  That's the chicken coop. And it still is, only those two tiny trees are now two giant trees, about three times the height of the coop.
8.  That's the boat barn, called such because it looks like an upside-down boat.  It used to be the barn that held the lumber (now barn #6), but then my uncle Ben moved from his cabin to there, which is what created the shift in the first place.
9.  This is the grape arbor.  It has a picnic table and its where we have outdoor birthday parties and such.  At my sister's wedding I got drunk and high and jumped off the roof and tore the ligaments in both my ankles. Because I am a Mental Giant.
10.  That's a little feed/tool shed.
11.  This is THE feed shed, home to the tractor, the brooders (for the chickens), and various tools and such.

Off to the left, nearish the grape arbor, is the reservoir.
Off to the left, like the immediate left of where the picture taker is standing, are some cabins (including Ben's old cabin), and the bath house (two sinks, two showers, two toilets for the unplumbed cabins).
Behind my parents' house but before you get to Rebecca's is the place my sister and brother-in-law have been working on. 

Here's a currentish (last Easter) picture taken from the driveway in front of my parents' house, looking towards my grandparents' house (you can just make out the roof behind those trees, and the line of the grape arbor is just in front of that):
Easter 2009
That's the rosebush just beyond the gate on the left, and the walk up to my parents' house is on the right just at that hose.

And here's an entirely unrelated photo of my parents' vegetable garden, if such things inspire you:
Parents' Garden