Don't Feed the Animals

January 27, 2010, 7:04 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

Not that you would know it from the crappy photos I’m willing to publish on this web site, but I’ve been working pretty hard on photography over the past year—and I just got word that one of my photos will appear in f-stop magazine next month. 

On the one hand: Wheeeeee! My first submission to a real magazine! Was accepted!

On the other hand: Why did I not not submit more of the photos from this particular series? Why am I not further along on the creation of my artist web site?


Scenes from a Saturday Night
January 25, 2010, 1:02 am
Filed under: Uncategorized

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Paragraph Memoir: Selfish Mother, Babies, Farm Shirt, It Begins, For the Record
January 13, 2010, 8:33 pm
Filed under: Paragraph Memoir

January 6 :: Confessions of a Selfish Mother
I found an old box of popsicles while rummaging around in the freezer today.  I made a big fuss over my thrilling find and offered you one. Enthusiastically, you chose grape.  In this way, I managed to keep all the double-chocolate cookies for myself.

January 7 :: Babies
Everyone was on edge when I came to pick you up from school today: the new girl was wailing, obviously had been for sometime, and was not showing any signs of stopping anytime soon. While a teacher paced the hall with her, you ran up to me clutching a tattered copy Parent Map magazine, which you’d been looking at while sitting on the time-out bench. “Look at this baby!” you said, holding up a picture of a grinning six-month old. “Maybe we could get one of these sometime.”  Meanwhile, a pair of sisters came into the hall. The younger one had just bitten the older one. The older one cried softly while someone rolled up her sleeve to assess the damage. The dazed-looking younger one drifted over to the time-out bench. She sat down, but then changed her mind, slithered off the bench and began backstroking across the floor.

January 8 :: Farm Shirt
You wore your new flannel shirt to school today. Two of your teachers came up to me, separately, after class, to tell me how cute you looked in it. One said you called it your “farm shirt.”

January 9 :: It Begins
You’re fascinated by the concept of telling jokes. Anytime anyone says something funny, you make them say it again, and you watch their mouth very carefully, as if studying their lips and teeth will unlock the secrets of how to make people laugh. Then you say, “Did you tell a joke?” And “I wanna do dat.” 

January 10 :: For the Record
When I tell you to take a deep breath and stretch your hands way up in the air? Yeah, I don’t know where I’m going with that anymore than you do. But the confusion itself always seems to have a calming affect on you. So there’s that.

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Working the scene
January 11, 2010, 5:02 am
Filed under: Uncategorized

The tables are turning…

He LOVES this camera.

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Chuck Norris, Summarized
January 7, 2010, 6:31 pm
Filed under: Makes me laugh | Tags:

We thought the holidays were over, but then Scott received a small bubble-wrapped package in the mail from his cousin, which turned out to contain the literary gem The Official Chuck Norris Fact Book.

Executive summary of the book’s major themes:

  • Chuck is a magical creature. When you are a magical creature, you give birth to yourself. You also give birth to your parents, not that you need parents. Furthermore, “Elvis never lived. He was just another manifestation of Chuck Norris.”
  • The roundhouse kick is a very useful weapon. From the looks of things, Chuck uses the roundhouse kick to solve 98 percent of his problems. Not that he has any problems, because hello!, he’s Chuck Norris.
  • Unlike emotions that lead to crying—or for that matter, laughing—or for that matter, neither laughing nor crying, but simply feeling calm and collected and generally at peace with your environment and its inhabitants—rage is useful emotion. “Chuck Norris grinds coffee with his teeth and boils the water with his rage.” Etc.

In conclusion:

“When Chuck Norris was was born, the doctor was the only one who cried. Never slap Chuck Norris.”

You’re welcome.

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Memory Keeping for Minimalists: The Paragraph Memoir
January 6, 2010, 5:23 pm
Filed under: Paragraph Memoir | Tags: , ,

I am never going to keep a scrapbook (creating intricate layouts in Photoshop just isn’t for me, and I like dealing craft paper/little craft store doodads even less), and yet. AND YET. I would like my memories of these years to be clear and specific. Because, let’s face it, the MEMORIES of raising young children are really one of the best parts of raising young children. 

So! One of my resolutions for 2010 is to keep a “one-sentence journal” for Gage. “One sentence” has quickly evolved into “a short paragraph,” but the concept is to write down one small scene from each day, things that we normally wouldn’t remember. 

I did this for a few weeks last fall (okay, more like ten days. Ten days can be rounded up to “two weeks,” right?  And “two” qualifies as “a few”? No?) and liked the results, but failed to keep it up. So I’m going to post some of it here, periodically, in hopes of keeping it going longer this time around.

January 1
End of the holidays: Dinner tonight was chips and dip. But! We ate it by candlelight. 

January 2
You spent all of your Christmas money today. ALL of it. You’ve clearly fallen in love with the thrill of making large purchases, and now you keep talking about going back to the store. So we’re having many conversations about enjoying the things you already have. Contentment is a skill, and you’re going to have learn it. And that’s not just your mother talking, that’s the two quarters, three dimes and six pennies you have left in your piggy bank, Son.

January 3
Today you decided to send your cousin, T, something in the mail. You weren’t quite clear on what you were going to send, however. We kept trying to explain the concept of a “letter,” but that wasn’t going anywhere. “Why don’t you draw a picture?” we suggested, but you just kept cutting out little triangle-shaped pieces of paper and saying “This is my envelope.” We did finally get something into the mailbox, but somehow I think Cousin T is going to look at that tiny piece of paper with an even tinier circle drawn on it and feel his tiny head exploding with question marks.

January 4
File under “concepts we haven’t quite grasped yet”: moving quickly when buckets of rain are falling from the sky. Not that I don’t want to hear that long story about the time the Alita One became the mother of the Autobots. Just not while I’m standing in the driveway and you’re hanging half into/half out of the car.

January 5
“Let’s have a race,” you said. “And the one who wins first wins!”

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Slow-Baked Shoyu Chicken Thighs
January 6, 2010, 4:26 am
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Made Beanplate’s Slow-Baked Shoyu Chicken Thighs tonight. Verdict: MAKE THIS. You won’t be disappointed. Unless, that is, you’re disappointed when you’re dead. After you die from happiness. In which case, I’ll eat yours.

Shoyu Chicken from BeanPlate
serves 6, 2 thighs apiece

1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup sherry
1/2 cup soy sauce
1-2 T. fresh ginger, grated
2 cloves garlic, minced
10-12 bone-in chicken thighs, skin removed
sesame seeds(optional)
green onion (optional)

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Combine brown sugar, sherry, soy sauce, ginger, and garlic in small bowl. Arrange chicken thighs on a broiler pan and lightly baste with sauce. Bake for 1 hour 15 minutes, flipping and basting the chicken every fifteen minutes. (If desired, sprinkle thighs with a few teaspoons of sesame seeds during final fifteen minutes of cooking time.) After removing chicken from oven, combine pan juices with remaining marinade in a small saucepan and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Garnish chicken with sliced green onions and serve with steamed rice and warm shoyu sauce.

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