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Thursday, October 30, 2008


We carved pumpkins this week, for the first time in several years. I'm not even sure Newton would remember having done it before. I bought small pumpkins so there would be less goop to deal with, but that meant small (and harder-to-carve) designs. Newton was excited to use some of the designs from Yes We Carve, so I printed out a couple I thought might fit on our pumpkins. Then of course both boys wanted the same design. Of course! Cindy Lou didn't participate, so we gave her pumpkin a classic jack o'lantern face.

I wish I'd gotten pictures of the process, but Mavis was wrangling Cindy Lou and my hands were covered in pumpkin goo. I wish I wish with all my heart (bonus if you get that reference) I had a picture of the Wizard carefully scooping seeds out of his pumpkin with a soup spoon. He toiled assiduously for a good 20 minutes, and while he didn't remove any of the stringy pulp, he did remove a good share of the seeds from his pumpkin.

Newton helped with transferring the designs from the stencils, and then I did the actual carving. It went LOADS easier (those pumpkin-carving-kit knives are dull dull dull) once I figured out that I should thin the target wall from the inside with a melon baller before carving. Taking it down to 3/4" or so made a world of difference. Even then, the stripes on the Obama-logo Os were beastly hard, and each of the two Obama pumpkins has a goof on it.

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Bendin' It

I got to go watch Newton's soccer game the other Saturday, and got what I thought were some pretty good action shots. Thanks to his hair, he's always easy to spot. He wants to give up soccer, although he's not at all bad at it. I've tried telling him that it's a great way to stay in shape during a season when he can't play basketball or baseball, but so far he's not buying it. Any suggestions?


Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Hmmming and Harrumphing

When did "di-vye-sive" become "di-viss-sive"?

ETA: Apparently only recently, and apparently there's also been quite a bit of discussion around the Interwebs on the topic (just Google "obama divisive pronunciation" and you'll come up with a bunch.

Yes, it was Obama's pronunciation of the word, in his racism speech and a few times since, that got me hmmmming. But he's not alone. This article in the Boston Globe (scroll down) gives a little history.

One of my favorite law school professors also had some quirky pronunciations, like EE-pock for epoch. He was a smart guy, too. Is it just a matter of vogue (mis-)pronunciations?

PS I still voted for him. Obama, not my law school prof. :)


Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Chocolate Babies

For the sake of comparison (I know, I know, you're not supposed to compare your children. Really, who doesn't?):

Yes, even in cake-eating, Newton sets a high standard for his siblings to follow.


Friday, October 17, 2008

One Year Old.

Yup. It's been a whole year. Amazing how quickly it's gone, when the pregnancy seemed absolutely interminable. The day after her birthday, she woke up saying, "No, no, no!" and I said, "What--did you think you turned 2?" I tell people she's one going on 25, and she definitely has strong opinions that she's not afraid to express.

Here she is a couple of weeks before her birthday, enjoying some pasta:

For her birthday, I made two cakes: one for her and one for the rest of us. They were the same kind--chocolate layer cake with chocolate buttercream frosting. In hindsight (you'll see below), the frosting wasn't quite as dark as would have been ideal for the messy pictures. But it was quite tasty! I used lavender (her signature color!) for the decorations:

We tried to rush dinner (salmon--her favorite!) and festivities between her naps, but unfortunately she was more than a little tired by the time we got around to cake. At first she seemed excited by the attention, but the actual cake didn't thrill her.

Of course she stuck her finger in the flame (not captured with the camera), we scared her with our yelling and quick grabbing of her hand and blowing of the candle, and then I had the nerve to stick her hand in a glass of cold water. Not her favorite moment of the evening.

Eventually, though, she started trying the cake:

In the end she utterly demolished it, but I don't think she consumed more than a couple of bites. We'll have to try again later--surely it was that she was too tired, and not that she didn't care for chocolate!

After cake and a quick bath, it was time for presents. She was still soooooo tired, but managed to muster some excitement about a couple of her new books,

(oops! Missed a spot in the bath!)

and the card from Grandma & Grandpa,

(don't take it away, Dad!)

and her new fancy Mongolian outfit from Grandpa Artsy-Fartsy and the Rev. Running Nut.

A few days after her birthday, she went in for her one-year checkup. She's 30 1/2" long (85%), 20# 5oz (32%), and her head is 47 cm (91%). Way to go, Cindy Lou!



Newton was baptized last weekend. He wanted as little of a fuss made about it as possible, so I won't make one. My parents were in town, and of course J&J and their family were there.

Yes, Newton has had a haircut. He really only wanted it because he thinks it will be easier to slick back for his Halloween costume: Draco Malfoy.

Don't you just love Miss Pea's special occasion "makeup"?


Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Dancing with My Cousin

Set your DVRs! My cousin is appearing on the Dancing with the Stars results show next Tuesday, October 7, with the Rockettes. She'll be in the second group to come onto the floor, but with all the makeup I'm not sure anyone will recognize her.

Update: I'm almost certain she was in the middle of the back line, the right one of the two tallest dancers. She's not on very long, and there aren't any closeups of her line, so it took lots of pausing and rewinding to find her. Cool!