Archive for January, 2009

Hooray for Lilly and Barack!

Thursday, January 29th, 2009

Barack Obama just signed the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act into law. And the global gag rule is already history. 

We know eventually he’ll do things that disappoint and perplex us. But in our household, we’re still pinching ourselves.


Saturday, January 24th, 2009

Zag started writing letters today – somewhat out of the blue. After dinner I suggested playing some letter games on his easel blackboard, thinking I would write some words and we would read them together. Instead he picked up the chalk and started writing. No words yet, mind you, except by accident. He’s big on I’s. Also O’s and T’s. A few H’s, a P, an E with many arms. He writes a string of letters and says, “Now what does it say?”, and I try to pronounce it. 

In other news, after tonight’s bath, his bathrobe wasn’t handy (in the wash after an unfortunate dental hygiene-related spitting incident) so I put him in mine – red and fuzzy, one of those super-soft modern microfiber fabrics. It’s not very absorbent and it’s kind of short – more intended to be worn over PJs than as an actual bathrobe, I guess – so I’ve never used it much. Zag fell in love with it instantly. He declared himself king, and he did look regal in his flowing, generously-cut red robe. But then – Oh dear, oh dear! – I wouldn’t let him sleep in it, or with it. (Largely a matter of principal/precedent.) So putting him to bed involved negotiating EXTENSIVE piteous weeping and many expressions of bitter regret that he does not have his own bathrobe made of similar super-soft fabric. I promised we would look for one… sigh. Maybe I can talk him into a blanket instead? It’s easy to find blankets made of that stuff, and that would be acceptable to sleep with… 

We’re busily getting ready for my ordination. Lots of details, lots of excitement. I have a sneaking suspicion that this might be the last time I have this much fuss made over me, personally, until I either get elected bishop or retire. Ah, well. I’ll get used to it eventually, I suppose.

What Barack and I have in common

Tuesday, January 20th, 2009

This morning while I was making breakfast, during one of the innumerable NPR mini-features on the inauguration, the home-base reporter asked the out-in-the-field reporter if Mr. Obama had a real work day scheduled today. The in-the-field reporter responded with an outline of Mr. Obama’s planned activities for the day, including his commitment to attend, with Michelle, all *TEN* official inauguration parties. The home-base reporter responded, “Well, I guess that’s work! Even if they’re all dressed up.” 

Yes, Ms. Home-Base Reporter, that is work. Perhaps, being a radio personality, you don’t know what it’s like to be a recognizable public figure. Nobody knows what you look like, so you can pick your nose, shoplift, talk loudly on your cell phone, etc., as much as you like in public, with no impact on your image.

But you know what? It’s different for those of us whose faces are attached to our work. (more…)

Longing for certainty

Saturday, January 10th, 2009

Zag has a new turn of phrase that tickles us. (more…)

Upcycling picture frames

Saturday, January 10th, 2009

My latest completed project! I got inspired by some pictures in a children’s decor catalogue, and thought, “I could do that.” So: Papercuts of local fauna, by yours truly, mounted in thrift-store frames. I’m pleased with them. They’ll go above the kid-books bookcase in the living room, once we get to a hardware store and buy more picture hangers. 

I love me some thrift store frames. (more…)


Saturday, January 3rd, 2009

Zag has started cursing. He’s apparently heard us say “Damn”, now and then, when we weren’t attending sufficiently to our language. Now when he’s really put out, he says, “Bam.” (”Bamn”?)

Safe, respectful, kind.

Friday, January 2nd, 2009

I just tracked down something Tilt mentioned to me a day or so ago, from the outstanding parenting blog Ask Moxie. In the third comment down on this post, a mother who goes by Hedra describes the three fundamental tests for (adult and child) behavior at her house: Is it safe? Is it respectful? Is it kind? (more…)

Project or process

Friday, January 2nd, 2009

I’m making dolls. I would post pictures, but that would involve taking pictures, and then downloading the 297 photos off of our digital camera onto my husband’s desktop computer, which he is currently using. So maybe not. But I’m making dolls. I have three torsos with heads and faces. One has hair, and another one has largely-completed but still-unattached limbs. 

I’m not sure why I want to make dolls with such urgency right now. I’ve been eyeing Mimi Kirchner’s website for several months now; I love her work, her style. Somehow, within the past week, it really got a grip on me and I decided to try it myself. I like how they’re coming along, so far. 

What I’m asking myself is: why is it so hard for me to have something that I just work along on when I have the time and inclination for a little hand-work? Why do I usually feel so driven when I’m working on something?

These dolls have not deadline, no timetable. They don’t even have a destination. I don’t know anybody who needs a large-ish, slightly clumsily made rag doll. Frankly, when I finish them, they’ll become a lot less fun; they’ll join the pile of handmade creatures I have no idea what to do with. I tried selling stuff for a while – it wasn’t worth the effort. So: there is no pressure whatsoever to finish these dolls by any particular date. 

And yet, a little voice in me keeps suggesting: Hey, you should try to get at least one done before you go back to work on Tuesday! 

I’m naming this to myself, at the moment, as the difference between project (something to be accomplished) and process (something to be lived with and enjoyed). I would like to experience this doll-making as a process, rather than a project. But it goes against my grain. I have to keep reminding myself.