Saturday, August 15, 2009

We're moving!

I've finally decided to simplify my life a bit by consolidating the family blogs into one:

This blog will stick around for archival purposes, but head over to the new one for updates! And be sure to check out the authors of each post, because hilltot and babyhill will be posting on the new blog as well (under their new monikers, zack-zack and mei-mei).

See you there!

Saturday, April 25, 2009

I have no life

...or at least, nothing interesting to blog about that does not include hilltot or babyhill. Hence, the lack of posts on this blog. I'm still trying to figure out that best way to handle things, but I will be consolidating blogs soon. I'll probably try to keep things organized enough that you can ignore the child-centric posts if you like, but I'm not sure how it will look. The main thing is that I want to get down to one blog, rather than trying to juggle three (plus facebook and twitter). I'll keep you posted!

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

My Irish side

In honor of St. Patrick's Day, we had corned beef and cabbage with potatoes for dinner. Chris also had a Guinness and I had a Guinness stout chocolate cupcake from Trophy Cupcakes to top off our meal. After half a bite, my dinner changed to cabbage and potatoes while Chris got the full deal plus a double-serving of corned beef. Turns out my Irish side doesn't include my taste buds.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Quarter(s) of my life

For the last 10 years, I've been collecting the state quarters. I didn't actively seek them out (i.e. order them, get new quarters from the bank, ask people to help). I preferred to just come across them as I went about my life (or Chris' life -- I did look through his change too). So they aren't pristine and I wasn't concerned about which mint they came from. I was just happy to find them.

About 5 years ago, Trisha gave me a Statehood Quarters coin album to store my collection. She also gave me a copy of the group picture from the 2003 Yahoo! Yodel Challenge (where we made it into the Guinness Book of World Records for the largest group yodel) at the same time, so I still have that picture stored in the coin album.

Tonight, I received an Alaska quarter as part of my change from Half Price Books. That's the last one I needed! It was so exciting to slip it into the little compartment and flip through the pages, looking back on 10 years of coins. I finished it! And it did take me just over a quarter of my life to complete, which I suppose is very fitting.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

For reals

Chris thinks I should blog more about my real thoughts on this site, rather than the sanitized version I put here. I've avoided doing that for the most part because I'm concerned about offending people. Although I don't mind people having opinions that differ from mine and I can still respect and like them in spite of it (in fact, I can learn a lot from them), I know that's not true for everyone. I'm not a confrontational person by nature so I don't normally seek out ways to rile up people who are judgmental or too insecure to withstand any kind of dissent or disagreement with their carefully constructed versions of reality.

See, this is what I mean. I'm sure I've already offended someone. And to be honest, if you're offended, then you are probably one of the people I'm talking about.

Anyway, I'm still not sure I want to unleash my full range of thoughts here. But I will put a few. And today's has to do with people who are satisfied with knowing only one side of a story, yet act as if they have all the facts at their disposal. Especially those who have ample opportunity to find out the full story, but choose to limit their knowledge only to those details that contribute to their preconceived way of thinking. I call this "willful ignorance".

Today's example of willful ignorance has to do with the people I hear comment on how unseasonably cold it is, how much snow we've had in a city that "never" has snow, and then follow up with, "So much for global warming!" Um, it's called "climate change". Global warming is one piece of it. Look it up.

Sunday, March 08, 2009

Not that I'm competitive or anything...

...but how can you deny my precious little boy? The fabulous photographer that took our family pictures is having a Mother's Day contest and we would very much appreciate your support! Click here to see the page and then vote for your favorite mommy/baby picture! Which, I hope, will be #3. If we win, we get a free 8x10 print of our picture, and if you win in the random drawing, you get a free mini-photo session! If you don't live in the could always gift your photo session to us! See how it's a win-win situation?

So head here, scroll to the comments, and add your comment voting for #3!


Tuesday, March 03, 2009

Why don't I do this more often?

I had an amazing time in LA this past weekend! I feel kind of bad admitting it, but it was not hard at all to be baby-free for a few days. It was actually really nice to not have to constantly think about naps, meals, baby gear and time restraints (T minus 28 minutes before the meltdown commences...).

It was also nice to be an actual person again! To be someone who is more than just the childcare provider. So often, I am only asked about Z and only spoken to in reference to him. I feel like the nanny -- someone who stays out of the way except to make sure the child is fed, changed and not screaming. But this past weekend, people talked to me as if I am a real live human being with thoughts and ideas and interests of my own! No one asked about Z (other than to be polite) and we spoke about things beyond the boundaries of the playroom gate. And I was even treated like a pregnant lady -- Trisha made sure I was fed (non-stop), had ample opportunities to visit the restroom, was well-stocked with water, and took a few minutes to rest when I needed it. It was so nice to be spoiled.

Anyone who followed my Facebook statuses has an idea of what we did. Disneyland! California Adventure! FOOD! Yummy, delicious food. And massages!

I got there on Thursday night, and we headed straight out to meet up with some of Trisha's friends. I had a lot of fun acting like a grown-up and staying out late. And Trish even indulged me by stopping at the In-n-Out drive-thru on the way home. Double-double protein style with fries. Perfect.

On Friday, we spent 12 hours at Disneyland and California Adventure. Trisha works with Disney's online team, so she was able to get us in for free. We rode the rides that are pregnancy-friendly (no big kid rides for me), took lots of pictures, saw the Aladdin musical (Genie is so great), and were thankful that we did not have any children with us. After seeing the gazillion toddlers and babies who were cranky, tired, overwhelmed and/or bored, I've decided that we won't be bringing our kids there until they are old enough to handle the whole day and we have at least 2-3 adults per child.

On Saturday, we went to a chili cook-off to sample some chili and vote for Felix. We would have voted for him regardless, but he really did make the best chili there (although the truffled parmesan cheese that a competitor used was pretty good). Felix won, but he didn't get a trophy or anything. Not even a golden chef's hat! But at least now he can call it "Felix's award-winning gen-u-ine tailgate chili".

After the chili cook-off, we headed to dim sum (oh heaven) and tried to get Mark to eat chicken feet. He was game until he actually saw them. However, Rob did eat one, and Jesse managed to eat a finger (or I guess it was actually a toe). Rhona and I had no trouble eating ours, but it's nothing new to us. Everything else was delicious as well and we managed to polish off a vast amount of food. When the bill came, I was reminded once again of why I miss living in CA. Tasty tasty dim sum, and only $48 for the six of us.

Since we'd already eaten twice (not counting breakfast), it was time to relax. We went to a Chinese foot-soak/reflexology place and the rest of the group had foot soak massages while I had a glorious 40 minute back and neck massage. I would have loved the foot soak, but foot massages are a no-no for preggies unless I want to get labor started. The back rub was more than adequate though! I've been really sore in my shoulders (something to do with carrying a 25lb toddler around, maybe?), so a massage was perfect. We finished off the afternoon with some boba (lavender milk tea for me...mmmm) and then headed to Trisha's parents for dinner. I think I mentioned that I ate a lot during this trip?

I always feel like I'm right at home when I'm with Trisha's family, and this time was no different. I got to meet Marie's 3-month old son Stephen (what a cutie!) and we had ice cream cake to celebrate Phillip's birthday. I looked through old baby pictures with Trisha's grandma and saw some great pictures from her parents' recent trip to Australia and New Zealand. And of course, I ate more food. Yummy Filipino food (I can eat pancit all day).

I flew back home on Sunday in order to make it to a toddler reunion party on time. It was so nice to see my boys again (all three of them), but I'm so glad that I was able to take this trip. It's been a long time since I've been able to relax and have stress-free fun like that, and it will be a long time before I'm able to do it again.

Also, Chris did really well his first time as a single parent! He and Z had a fun time going to the zoo and visiting friends. I'm glad that they got some "man time" together!

I'll post some pics soon, but I haven't had a chance to go through them to choose a representative set. In the meantime, I need to try to catch up on my sleep!

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Weekend getaway

Today I'm leaving for my very first baby-free trip since my hilltot was born! I can't believe that it's been almost 16 months and I haven't even spent a single night away from him. I'm a little nervous about how I'll handle it, but I know that he'll be just fine. It will be so great for Chris and Z to have some father-son bonding time, and it will be good practice for Chris as my pregnancy progresses and he has to take on more parenting responsibilities. I did cook enough food for Z to last a couple weeks (in case I decide I need more away time), but other than that, it's going to be Daddytime, 24x7! They are going to have a great time.

And I am going to have a fabulous time! We're going to Disneyland, we're going to eat lots of good Asian food, it will be warm (at least compared to the several inches of snow I woke up to this morning), we're going to get pampered, and best of all, I get to hang out with Trish! And I won't have to constantly think about nap times, meal times, packing up 10 tons of fact, I'm going to fly with JUST A CARRY-ON! What a dream. No car seat, no stroller, no huge duffel bag with a Pack-n-Play. Just me and my clothes. Whoo hoo!

OK, maybe I won't have such a hard time with this. I'll try really hard not to skip down the airport terminal.

Just kidding. I know I'm going to miss my boys terribly. And I'm too awkward to skip anyway.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Emily's baby shower

You may remember my posts a couple years ago about Emily and Brett making it legal by getting hitched (twice). Well today, we celebrated their upcoming new addition! And not their home remodel, although that is apparently going well too. Emily's friend Angie threw her a lovely baby shower, where we got to munch on yummy snacks, play games, and watch Emily fan herself as she got overheated. We also got to see Emily do a belly bump boo-yah with Lori, who is due a week after Em. In addition to Em and Lori, there were several other pregnant women there (the second picture below shows the six of us in chronological order of "ready to popness"), including Em's sister Alison! They also got married the same year, so they apparently like to keep their parents on their toes.

I can't wait to meet their little one! Although if they have a girl, apparently we have to keep Z away from her when they reach adolescence.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

My first album

This is another "viral note" that's going around Facebook, but it entertained me so I'm posting it here. Here are the rules:

  1. Go to wikipedia and hit “Random... Read More... Read More” or click The first random wikipedia article you get is the name of your band.
  2. Go to "Random quotations" or click The last four or five words of the very last quote of the page is the title of your first album.
  3. Go to flickr and hit “Explore the last seven days” or click The third picture, no matter what it is, will be your album cover.
  4. Use Photoshop or similar to put it all together.
Here's mine:

(My band name is a species of dragonfly, the album is a quote from Kanye West, and the picture is, umm, a picture of a girl.)