September 18, 2014 § Leave a comment


Someone has been banished from daycare for the second week in a row for congestion.  It has also been BRUTALLY hot in southern California (our house was a chill 100 degrees yesterday afternoon. Inside.) Which makes it close to impossible to do anything during the day except sit in one place and sweat.

Paul is still working nights.  We rarely see him.  And after the umpteenth time of daycare telling me that I can’t bring her back until the end of the week….


Seriously, is this normal?  For daycares to reject kids with runny noses that they picked up from…wait for it…daycare?  I mean, I get it, but it’s a vicious cycle.

Anyway, this inevitably led to a spontaneous mid-week trip to SB so Memaw can watch HH for stretches during the day and I can actually accomplish some work.  I honestly don’t know what I’d be doing if I didn’t work from home and have family nearby…aside from being let go from my job because I’d be bringing a little snot machine maniac to the office with me every day.

So here we are, back up north.  Enjoying some time with the Greats.  Hope you’re all surviving the heat.

How does your garden grow (Part II)

September 10, 2014 § Leave a comment


Like woah.

img_59345 weeks ago


I thought our garden in Kentucky went crazy one year, but it was nothing like this.  Plants loooooove LA weather or soil or something.  Whoever said don’t plant new plants in August should not be listened to.  Our garden is growing like a boss.

The basil, two tomato plants (Champion and Beef Eater), squashes, and peppers are all going bezerk.  The tomato plants are even pulling the cages–which I originally thought would be too big for the plants–over, they’re so huge. We have baby peppers and tomatoes, and we’ve already picked some beans. The onions are looking healthy, I just have figure out when to pick them (see: radishes).  It’s all very exciting.

One problem: the growth trajectory of the beans and cucumbers (that are in the left hand corner up against the back wall) were starting to flatten out.  I thought it might be because that ginorm, leafy, flourishing, flowering squash plant smack in the middle of the garden box was shading them from all their sun.

IMG_20140906_101502 copy

A little over 4 weeks ago my parents brought us another half wine barrel/planter.  I planted some rainbow chard, kale, and flower seeds in it.  After 4 weeks, it looked exactly like this:


Nothing.  Weeks of watering and loving, no sprouts or beginnings of sprouts or anything. (The dark stuff on the soil are recently dumped coffee grounds.)

It may have been a little premature, but since our garden box was getting pretty crowded and that was some prime real estate, we decided to move the squash into the barrel.

“Is it bad to move a plant that big into a new environment? With other seeds?” I asked Paul as he casually reached down and pulled the huge squash plant from the garden box.


We ignored the fact there are probably 50 other seeds in there, dug a hole, and stuck the squash in.

Went to check on it the next day:


Hm.  That’s not good.  Hoping it recovers soon.


September 8, 2014 § Leave a comment


Really, how far could he have gotten?

…but if you live nearby, please keep an eye out.

The Crows

September 6, 2014 § 2 Comments


This past month Paul’s been working a couple night shifts a week.  Having to switch back and forth between mornings and nights sucks for him.  A lot.  And having to come home and sleep during the day in our little unairconditioned dutch oven of a house is equally sucky.  And I don’t particularly like never seeing him.

But there is a small silver lining.  And that is that suddenly, in the evenings, I have been finding myself with little windows of quiet solitude.

I love my baby.  I love Paul.  And I almost always prefer company to flying solo.  But oh my god, how I savor that time between when I put HH down around 8 and put myself down around 10.  I can read a book!  I can write!  I can watch (another) episode of The Americans!  I can read my Mormon housewife blogs!  I can…drink a beer and watch the crows!

“Drinking beer and watching crows”, I hear you thinking, “is the absolute worst way to spend valuable minutes of alone time (aside from maybe the Mormon blogs).”  But let me tell you, friends, it has become my favorite.


I don’t remember hearing crows in SF or Kentucky.  Maybe it’s a southern California thing, because they wake me up every morning at my parent’s house too.  Either way, at sunset in our neighborhood, the crows really get going.

When dusk hits, they begin to line up on the trees and telephone lines all around our house.




They are everywhere.  Cawing and whatever.

Then, it will get eerily quiet…everything will be kind of still…the crows just sit…then…BOOM!  A caCAWphony (zing!) of crowing as they all take off, en masse, to flock somewhere else.


As they fly the crowing stops, replaced by the heavy, soothing shOOOsh shOOsh of hundreds of wings.


This happens a few times over the hour or so the sun is setting.

(Sidenote: We live in the same neighborhood as Culver Studios.  The bungalow where Alfred Hitchcock used to write is around the corner. I know The Birds took place in Bodega Bay and was based on a novel, so I don’t know really if there’s any relation.  I’m just saying…)


Anyway, for some reason I am totally captivated by this process.  It is creepy and calming and beautiful.

So when the baby goes down I head out to the porch with Spike and a beer…no book, no computer…to watch the crows line up, listen to them settle in and chit chat, contemplate the changing sky, and wait for the mass exodus.


THEN I go inside and watch the Americans.  Because however awesome the crow phenomenon may be, it doesn’t involve wigs.

Throwing shade

September 5, 2014 § Leave a comment


I had no idea baby palm trees start off life looking like a huge pineapple.

Happy weekend.

UPDATE: Passed a bigger one today.  Suddenly they’re everywhere.


Night swimming

August 26, 2014 § Leave a comment


Sunset outdoor practices are my favorite.  By far.  Maybe it’s because for some reason swimming at dusk almost always gives me flashbacks of swim practice as a kid.  Maybe it’s because when you’re done, and that super relaxed, warm, foggy, wave of sleepiness that always follows a hard swim finally washes over you, you know all you have to do is curl up in your bed and go to sleep…as opposed to spend the whole day trying to hide the fact you’re about to faceplant on the conference room table.  Who knows.

Getting there is hard.  Usually Paul isn’t home, and the lifeguards aren’t super stoked on babysitting a one year old while I swim (weird). Even if Paul is home, more often than not, by 6:30pm I’ve had the whole day to convince myself I definitely should NOT go to practice.

But I love watching twilight fall while I swim, seeing the pool lights come on, illuminating the bright, bright blue water against an orange sky, knowing that my sweats are waiting for me if I just get through this one last set, and walking through the front door clean, tired, and happy.

Wonderful way to end the day.

LaLa Land

August 24, 2014 § Leave a comment


Came across this on our walk around the block the other day.  The guy in the yellow vest was actually trying to justify/explain the 30+ signs for 2 parking spots.  It wasn’t working.


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