Wednesday, January 30, 2008

What Happened After The Shower (or... this may or may not have involved hysterical laughter and comments such as "who peeled that one off the pole?"

Allison's new apartment is lovely. In just the ways you would expect from her, if you've known her a while. High ceilings, pre-war, big windows and wood floors. When I got there last weekend, they had been there about a week, but all the furniture and books and things looked like they belonged. It seems like the place she's meant to be.

I'm having a little trouble keeping up on where I'm meant to be. I only bought my tickets to the next writing group week today, and we leave a week from Saturday. I'm about a dozen blog posts behind - I can hear them whizzing by my head every night as I get in bed too late and too behind on other things to be able to justify taking the time to capture them, and when I did finally write this one I actually posted it to the wrong blog the first time. Yeah, there is a wrong blog. How's that for not knowing where you're meant to be?

Of course, those things are just a sliver of the reason why my favorite part of my surprise appearance at Allison's baby shower in New York last weekend was the catching up part. It wasn't so much catching up on news, though we did a little of that. It was mostly just sitting on the couch at the end of the night, and the catching up was the kind of catching up you do just by being with people you love, in the same room, breathing the same air. My mom, Allison, Dakota and I don't get to do that as much as I'd like, but it's certainly often enough to remind me how very much I love all three of them. To say nothing of Baby Scrumptious and the twins, Algene and Eugeson.

I miss you already.

XOXO
H

Monday, January 28, 2008

Sunday, January 27, 2008

What we've been up to

Eugene and his educational tools. Do you think the teacher looks concerned?

Well, I'm afraid that I am not yet touching upon this weekend, which has been epic to say the least, but I did want to provide my excuses for the last couple of weeks of absentee-ism on my part.

We have been in the throws of total chaos.

People always say how having babies, moving, and getting fired are the three hardest things that can put your marriage to the test and over the last few months we've been dealing with wo out of the three (though I really think that the having babies part should carry more weight since we're having two at once).

We've had a ton of doctors' appointments (OB once a week and Maternal Fetal ultrasounds bi-weekly) but that is pretty much old hat at this point. We also did the infant CPR and new baby parenting classes - as illustrated above and learned all about breastfeeding, diapering, and bathing our new babies.

We are totally experts now and I know that it will be easy-peasy! Hahahahahahaha...

That's the laughter of madness you hear!

Also, we've had the walk-thru at our new apartment (where we discovered a giant bubble of water in the ceiling paint in the kitchen) the closing (where we discovered that our mortgage was structured differently than we expected), the organizing of having the floors refinished (which was totally worth the headache, but ay-yi-yi, what a pain in the ass!) and the moving (where we discovered that I have just as much crap as I was afraid I did!)

My sweet love, now gone...

I did agree to purge some items. For example - the six-foot tiger that has been lounging in our living room for the last nine years has gone on to a better home... or that cloud in the sky called 'le dump'. I don't know because I had to ask our neighbor Charra to deign to dispose of it for me - and she promised not to tell me where it ended up.

Some things just cut too deep - ya know? Never underestimate a 34-year-old woman's ability to be overly attached to a big stuffy! Even a filthy, dusty deflated tiger!

Packing for the moving was hard. The actual moving was hard. The unpacking has been hard.

And then there was this weekend.

Which was just delightful and wonderful and completely validated that my husband is the sweetest man on earth and knows and loves me. Despite my crazy-making hormones. Despite the move. Despite the impending arrival of two creatures who will, more than likely suck the life out of us - leaving dried up husks behind - and then bolster us back up with adorable smiles and their yummy baby smell.

So it has been a long couple of weeks, leaving little or no time for blogging. Plus I have the firewall at work to contend with - the nerve of blocking me from my own blog!

But I will try to do better, and I will definitely post about this weekend because I know that some of you out there are waiting with baited breath and you rightfully deserve a post, because you were so very generous with us!

For now, I just have to say that the weekend made the last weeks totally worthwhile. And I think that's saying a lot.

Friday, January 25, 2008

Guess Where We're Off to Now?


Me, and my shawl, and my New Yorker?

Last of the Winter White

Bobby sent me this cell phone photo from his morning coffee holiday at Victrola and it seemed like the perfect thing for the last day of Shari's winter white week.

I met Katherine and Peggy for a drink last night at Licorous before we went to Cheap Wine and Poetry. Kate did an amazing job with her poems, but let's save that for another day. Anyway, the three of us were talking about blogs and how they work and how all these people in the blogosphere know each other. I was delighted recently to learn that the latest addition to our writing group was someone who has a blog I've been aware of for a while now, and they thought that was amazing, that I had randomly come across her before.

It's these little things like Winter White Week that do it - Shari is hosting the week on her blog, so her readers come look at winter white photos by clicking on the links she's posted. It's just a little way to explore, to literally see a snapshot of someone else's world. A little peeping without all the nasty paparazzi aspects of it. If only we were all satisfied with getting a glimpse into people's lives in this kind of benign way, instead of having to see exactly what poor Michelle W looks like as she brings Matilda home to NY this week and begins the long slow process that grief demands of us. I realize it's not my life, but that death has made me a little sad all week.

Anyway, I am liking joining in on the photos with some of my favorite bloggers, like Lisa S, Curious Bird, Knitting Iris, and being reminded that there are other, mostly happier, things going on in the world every minute. My other blog inspiration for the day comes from Hula Seventy, who has posted her 37 things to do before I turn 38 list. I think I need to get on it, and come up with my own. You know how I love the future, and lists like this are one of many ways to fling yourself wholeheartedly into it. I love that.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Lesley Wants To Know


Why my shadow looks like a dog. I know. I'm pretty sure I know.

Seattle Peeps!

Cheap Wine and Poetry tonight at Hugo House! And guess who's reading? Lovely Kate! You know I'll be there.

More winter whites

I like this photo, with the big pile of snow on the little birdhouse, all that sky, the visual joke of it... I guess I take a lot of photos like this, where I'm trying to just pick one little thing and isolate it. There's something wrong about them too, a little forced or gimmicky, really. I do like it, I'm just left a little dissatisfied somehow.

I suppose it would help if I really knew how to use my camera. Maybe I could get the little pinecones in crisp detail, with more depth or definition. This is my fantasy, at least. For now, most of the photos I take turn out to be nothing more than souvenirs, when I want them to be more like little stories. I love the photos from yesterday just for their strangeness, while I can't help but feel that these ones today are a little sad, like a group of words that has had a plot forced upon them.

Still, they recall how delighted I was when we woke up in the morning at the Hot Springs and all the steam had frozen into crystals covering each branch of every tree, and everything all moving with glitter in a way that you could never photograph even if you knew your camera better. It was like someone had made Christmas real again.


And of course the ranch was gorgeous and gave me a feeling of contentment and relief. It's so rare for me to not be on my way to somewhere else, but when you are at the ranch, you are always every day just There.


Wherever you go, there you are. I realize that's usually said as a kind of caution, an explanation for why a certain kind of person is never happy, but there's a flip side to it is really lovely if you think about it - I want to be There, wherever I am. I'm not always good at that. But with time, I'll get better. Don't you think?

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Dark Whites

Pagosa Hot Springs

What I look like at 9 degrees

Road to sushi

Not quite ready for the Colorado post yet, just a few of the stranger photos for you. More to come - I took 385! Since arriving home from the ranch trip on Sunday night, I've been busy settling back into drunken chicken sandwiches at Baguette Box, steaming Moule Frites at Le Pichet and Red Velvet Cake at the Kingfish Cafe. It's amazing what you can get done in 24 hours when you put your mind to it.

Friday, January 18, 2008

Just Gonna Have To Settle For Bikini and Mittens

Operation Snow Bunny hit a snag this morning. We were all set with our new fantastically hideous boots from a vintage store in Portland, until we realized how damn heavy the things were. Look at them - you can tell they aren't the kind of thing you want to have in your carry-on, can't you? And even more than wanting to look ridiculously silly in the snow, I want to avoid checking luggage. So the boots were sacrificed and I will just have to hope that you will do you your part to appreciate them here. Especially since last night when I considered wearing them to the new vodka bar I like, Bobby said "Mmmm... no." He was right. But I still love them. What, you say "Wear them on the plane?" Ha, right, um, that doesn't work when the only pair they had was a size smaller than you wear, but you bought them anyway. These boots are for a show pony, not a workhorse. At the airport, you gotta be a workhorse.

It's going to be quite on the blog here for a few days. Ali is moving into her new digs, very exciting, but not very blog-conducive, right? And I'm on a plane for ABQ, where Lesley will pick me up and whisk me off to her casita. She promises that there will be lattes before the long drive to Creede the next day, where it is -2 degrees, but the wolfhounds, and the wood stove and the stovetop espresso maker wait. Aren't you glad I'm going to the ranch? If only for one night.

The second day we'll head over Wolf Creek Pass and on to Pagosa Springs, which is how this whole bikini and mitten thing came about.

I think you know, I'll report back. In the mean time, everyone have a good weekend, and I think this post says it. Give it a little thought, will ya? That man was Love.



Thursday, January 17, 2008

How To Go Back Home

It's not easy to be a regular at a hotel. I managed it once, back when the company I was working for was bought by a company in the Bay Area. I spent about three nights a week down there for a while, and that was enough to make me a regular at the Claremont. Not that being a regular there made a tremendous difference. The Claremont was reserved, self-contained. She was grand, in a slightly over-the-hill kind of way. She doled out a few familiar nods here, an upgrade there, but the Claremont never did smile when I walked in the door. Maybe she was giving me my space. And that was fine, then. She was pretending that she wasn't past her prime yet, and I was pretending... well, that's another story.

If I was going to be a regular at a hotel now, I would want something different. No pretending, and certainly no stand-offishness, not even the elegant kind. To be a regular now, I would require something a good deal more enthusiastic than the Claremont could offer.

And I think I know just who I'd get that from. Susan was right, at 10PM, I was off to go be myself, in what has become my absolute favorite hotel so far, ever. This hotel is so good, it's one step away from love.

There were symptoms of love that night, that's for sure. There's that feeling you get, like you have discovered a soul such as no other soul you have ever discovered before. This is a soul that has fantastical things, walls full of birds, the photo booth in the lobby, and someone lovely from the front desk who will linger at the bar at the end of the night, drinking old-fashioneds and charming you with talk about the things you love most, books and being young in New York, moving for love, losing love, finding it again. This soul is a building, with big old windows like eyes wide-open and swinging doors like easy smiles. It is welcoming and lively, and the people who work in the kitchen, at the bar, in the coffee shop and at the front desk, are all the kind of people who remind you just why it is you like people in the first place. People who will give you a hug at the end of the night the first time they meet you, who will take your email and maybe write and maybe not.

And either way will be fine, of course, because all of it, the scraps of paper with addresses on them, the photos you took, the book you left behind for the bar back, they were all just the many ways this hotel, just like the good kind of love, was giving you back to yourself, reminding you who you were before, and who you get to be again, now.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

In Which Susan Attempts To Help This Blog Live Up To Its Name, And I Let Her, In Spite of My Tremendous Modesty, Because I Love Her


Ode to a trip to Portland

I am not a writer but Heather is. And an appreciator of people. An amazing person. An amazing friend.

I am not a writer. I'm a nurse with sub par spelling and grammar. A girl who falls asleep at 10:00 with the TV on on a Saturday night. And Heather is my tolerant best friend who covers me with a shawl and tries to turn off the TV despite my protests and slips quietly out the door to go...well... Be Heather.

I am not an artist but Heather is. I get my coffee and smile at the barista, but Heather will notice, appreciate, and document. Turning a simple exchange into something more special, a photo, perhaps a short story later.

I am not an artist, I step over, walk by, and completely miss things that Heather notices and shows to those of us too busy, too preoccupied, or too far inside our own heads to notice.

Heather observes, appreciates, absorbs, then creates. And the world is a better place because of it.

Thanks for a great weekend, girlee!!
~ S


* she really did write this, I swear!

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Potential Titles for Upcoming Blog Posts About the PDX

  1. Susan and Heather's Most Romantical Weekend Ever
  2. The Magical, Magical Night I Drank Old Fashioneds and Didn't Get a Headache
  3. Cruise Ship on Dry Land
  4. I Am Never Leaving This Block Again Ever
  5. In Which Portland Raises Everyone's Self Esteem
  6. I Should Have Done More Tongue Work On Mine
  7. You Can Drink Your Latte in the Shower Here
  8. Heather Learns Her Mac Keyboard Shortcuts From A Guy in the Lobby At 2:45 AM (open apple + shift + r!)
  9. Harmonica On a String
  10. Was That You Who Called Me At 2:28 AM?
  11. How'd I Get That Scrape on My Belly?
  12. What's The Name of It? Rite Aid.
  13. Which Is Sweeter, Boots or Cupcake?
  14. Tea Party in Room 318
  15. Dr. Phil? It's Susan.

Saturday, January 12, 2008

Poor Hawks.

I'm pretty sure this is directly related to GWB being gifted with LW's jersey. Dammit!! 

Go Hawks!

Friday, January 11, 2008

The Undead Book Club


I've been having a writing crisis lately. Maybe you've heard me say this before. Lots of people have. I think when I say it, people think of something like a literary case of low self-esteem. I wouldn't go so far as to say that I have never suffered from that, but that isn't exactly what's going on right now.

Tami helped me articulate it a little more clearly a few days ago, and then last night Lisa and Kathleen indulged me in further musings on the subject. It's not the words that are the problem, it's not individual sentences. I love those, love tinkering with them and spend many minutes a day on that tinkering. Some things don't get revised much - text messages, emails, certain blog entries. But some things just run through my head like lyrics to a song that I am always changing the tune of. This is one of the reasons I crave the walk to work, why I will freeze my nose and have bad hair every day and wear out a pair of heels in less than a month. I want the sentences, I need them. I would go so far as to say I am as addicted to them than I am to lattes. More addicted to them than I am to cheese.

The problem with the writing is the idea of a story. I am not being modest when I tell you that an understanding for how to make a story eludes me. It's as though I am trying to build a mammal, backbone and all, but know only how to make a candy-coated covering, or a jellyfish.
And of course, part of the problem is clearly a problem of faith. Part of the problem is that writing a story seems to me to be an act like building a mammal, an act for a deity, not a mortal. Who am I to say What Happens? And that's what a story is, right? What Happens?

What happened last night was a little vodka tasting. Just a little. Hints of fig, a soupcon of ginger, a touch f grape. Lisa and Kathleen met me at Venik for what I am now thinking of as the Book Club That Will Not Die. I met Kathleen 8 years ago because Lisa took me to her book club, after I begged. That was a lifetime ago for me, when I was a homeowner, settled, partnered. Those things changed and so did book club, but it keeps coming back, and I love that it is turning out to be an irrepressible force.

Kathleen and Lisa are the reason, as has become evident now that the club has been whittled down to we three. These two are the perfect people to talk books with, to talk about my own writing with, because they are the kind of readers that writers write for. Thoughtful, generous, eclectic in their tastes, willing to take a chance. Kathleen has been in school recently, so not reading as much as she'd like, but the book we read this time, The Raw Shark Texts, lured her back into the world of fiction. When her husband Scott saw her curled up on the couch, racing through the book, he said "Uh oh, It's Back!"

Which is why I am so glad to have the two of them as blog readers, because as I told them last night, at some point, all this work I do with sentences, all the ways I carve and cut and paste and weld things together, it needs to go somewhere. To invite a reader into your writing is a risk that work demands and deserves. Whether you, whether I, ever learn to write a mammal or not. Because candy-coated shells can be good too, and jellyfish are lovely. As long as I can manage to resist the urge to combine the two. Cause nobody really wants a candy-coated jellyfish. Do they?

Still talking, even in the rain

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

In Defense of A Wonderful Life

There was really only one thing I was craving this Christmas - a viewing of It's A Wonderful Life, with a bowl of popcorn and some knitting. I got it, and I was not disappointed.

Have you seen it lately? It might surprise you. This movie is DARK, people. Do you have any idea how many times Jimmy Stewart (as George Bailey) kicks or hits something? He also gives his girlfriend a good shaking, gets loaded and drives drunk, plus there are bar fights, not to mention a girl fight, prostitution, alcoholism, war, poverty, I could go on. Even Donna Reed smashes shit in this movie. It's about frustration, disappointment, discouragement, the mundane grind of keeping up with everyday life and whether or not to even frikking bother. But of course, what gets you in the end is that it's also about what matters. And I needed some of that this Christmas.
So, what does all this have to do with Carpenter Ranch? And today, January 9th? Well, you probably know that most of the scenes in It's A Wonderful Life are a turning point of some kind, turning points that give you the shape of one person's life and influence, a tour of all the ways that George Bailey has affected the lives of the people in Bedford Falls.

Our weekend at Carpenter Ranch was a turning point for me. That was the first time in years that I let anyone read or hear anything that I had written other than an email. It's also the weekend I met Pam for the first time.


Pam, see, is one of the world's George Baileys. Anyone who has ever struggled to express themselves in anything from a birthday card to a novel knows that we all have an Old Man Potter in us somewhere. Every writer is subject to some negative, crabby internal force that has the power to shame us into some seedy little corner of ourselves, that corner where the guy who should have turned out to be a jovial barkeep, the kind who makes sure you get home safe, instead turns into the foul-mouthed bouncer who says things like "We don't need any characters around to give the joint "atmosphere". Is that clear, or do I have to slip you my left for a convincer?"

Of course, if you are bothering to read this at all, you know that we do indeed need characters, and maybe you are aware by now that Pam is a person who fights the George Bailey fight to make sure that we have them. Every person in our writing group can attest to that, and no doubt countless others who have worked with her at Davis or been to one of her workshops elsewhere. She's the reason some of us, in our writing lives, inhabit a place a lot more like Bailey Park than Pottersville.

In addition to being a champion for and encourager of the best parts of ourselves, she also shares George's sense of fun, and his wanderlust, of course. There's a line I love (one of many) where George proclaims, "I'm shakin' the dust of this crummy little town off my feet and I'm gonna see the world!" Pam's life is that line, actualized. I've been lucky enough to spend time with her in at least five states in the relatively short time I've known her and I'm not sure there was a day last year when the location of my own feet wasn't in some way influenced by her. I doubt there would have been a year off, or a trip to England, or all that time in NY last year, without her. I know there would have been no ranch for me, no Tomales Bay, no Davis.

Pam also, like all of us, occasionally shares some of George's lovable but real flaws. One of which is, in the face of frustration, or discouragement to forget how big her life is, and this is understandable, because it is a very big life, bigger than a wolfhound, or a ranch, or even a collection of very beautifully written books. This is just a reminder, on her birthday, that her particular wonderful life is one that contains more love for her, more support and friendship than she will ever, in a million lifetimes, get around to using up.

So, hey. Happy birthday, Pam.

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Surprise!

Last Thursday was the day for surprises... some good, some not so good.

I'm not really the best person for dealing with surprises. My brain runs a mile a minute, I get all flustered and emotional. And lately I have to pee. I'm sure it's some sort of hormonal pregnancy-related reaction.

Lets just pretend at least, okay?

The happiest surprise was my baby shower at work!

Balloons! Cake! Giant candy-filled bottles!

There were presents - good to know that the babies won't have to go nekked if they happen to be born in the next little bit! And there were home-made 'Baby B' cookies and 'Baby A' cookies. There was cake and sparkling cider and best of all lots and lots of people from my office there to show me that they really cared about me and that my ginormous pregnancy had not gone unnoticed.

Is it sad how excited I look for cake?

I was lured down to our company's kitchen by Lara, and there was a whole mess of people waiting for me! I almost started crying and I turned bright red and I think I may have said something about how unfair it is to surprise pregnant ladies.

And then I had to flee to the bathroom to pee. I think that may have made my arrival a bit anti-climactic for some people.

But really, I felt very very lucky.

And then we had the walk through at the new apartment.

And another surprise

Surprise!

This charming, ummm, hammock of water was hanging from our kitchen ceiling!

Apparently, the apartment upstairs had had a sink overflow and it leaked into our ceiling - or rather the previous owners' ceiling - since we hadn't closed yet.

Awesome, right?

Suffice to say, it added some drama to the closing on Friday. As did several financing surprises and some scheduling issues for getting the floors refinished...

Regardless of all of those surprises though, we are now the proud minority owners (the bank owns the majority, naturally) of an apartment in Washington Heights.

It's weird to think that thats where you will visit us now. Thats where our babies will come home to and grow up. Thats where we're going to be living. A week from Friday.

Yikes.

And when you come to visit, it will be a surprise for you!

Monday, January 07, 2008

We Have Shawls. And Slayer. We Can Wait.

Still dark here. No rain today, at least not on me. Just cold, and blue sky. More forgiving, but that kite is still stuck in the tree and I'm not sure it's ever coming out. I am not expecting joy right now, but still, every day, I get it.

My heart's the bitter buffalo

I'm going through a Modest Mouse phase, and had to stop Harry Potter last night when he said "I just feel so angry, all the time. What if after everything that I've been through, something's gone wrong inside me? What if I'm becoming bad?" That's it, Harry. I asked too, and found out the answer and that's where I've been the last twenty years. Here in my house now, I have shawls, and I knit more and pass them on, and that's the spell I cast on grief. Every day I talk to more than one person who has loved me more than ten years, without even sharing my same blood, and every year I meet more than one person whom I intend to love for ten years more.

this is the part of me that needs medication

This is not a Britney style breakdown, just fatigue, a wondering what matters, a lot of long walks and thoughts that don't hang all the way together and stories with no moral to them. But I can count six couples I admire, and that seems like a lot to me, and there is all this knitting, and that always hangs together, every time. If it didn't, you would rip it out and start again, and keep on making it until you had something that might help someone you love.

on this life that we call home the years go fast and the days go so slow

The joy comes back. It's not even up to you. It's just what time does. The sunrise stops coming later, and things start to taste like something good again. And all that time, the shawl you wore was warm. That's how you one day wake up happy.

Sunday, January 06, 2008

Isn't Everything Always About Timing?

Have you been to King's Hardware with me? I love to take people here. Saturday night, Susan was my victim. Victim turned out to be the right word, though, since King's is just not really the same place on a weekend night it is on a weekend morning. Not that we didn't have fun. I'm smitten with the jukebox (really any jukebox) so I stole $5 from Susan (oops, still owe her) and put a ton of songs on. While I was standing there trying to decide what to play from Exile on Main Street, a tall guy in a black hoodie came by and asked me what I had just put on - something from Goo by Sonic Youth. I went back to the table and he walked by later and said "You have good taste." Susan wrinkled up her nose and said "Why, because you're eating onion rings?" Then we talked about how it's sort of impossible to look like you have anything but good taste on that jukebox. It's one of those totally curated for coolness jukeboxes, MC5, Stooges, NY Dolls, boy stuff like that. I guess you could pick all the so-called hits off of every album and that would be less cool than picking the deep cuts, but short of that, you can't really look uncool. I'll pay you $10 if you can figure out how.

One of my favorite things about King's is the photo wall. Isn't it nice? One of my least favorite things? The dude throwing up into his hands as he ran to the garbage can behind us. This is why King's should really be reserved for Sunday morning, after the Farmer's Market. A lot less pukers that time of day.

But the best thing about King's is the Bloody Marys. Love them. Two pickled green beans, two olives, a spear of pickled asparagus, lemon, lime and celery in a Ball jar. The celery is usually a little wilty, but I choose to overlook that. You can't have everything in a bar where the servers and bartenders spend five minutes milling around looking at the puke dribbles on the floor before one of the bus boys comes by and gets down to business with the rag. Dear bus boy, you rule. We noticed.

Saturday, January 05, 2008

2008, Day 5

We got to the 5th day of the year before we had another really good one. Still, that's okay. If 2 out of 5 are this good this year, I can live with that. Here's something that makes a day good - having breakfast twice.

The first time I had breakfast today, it was made by Bobby. Check him out:

Look who got a big tattoo!

Yeah, yeah, don't get your boxers in a bunch. You wanna know why his shirt was off? I was driving him to the airport and he didn't want to get bacon on his nice shirt, or for his sweater to smell like bacon on the airplane. Considerate, isn't he?

Tell me this, though - why did he have to eat his breakfast without his shirt on? Yeah. Anyway, I took him to the airport at 8AM, so you know my world isn't going to be as entertaining for the next week while he's in Chicago. Wish him luck with his interviews for grad school! I've spent so much time talking to him about it that I'm going to almost take it personally if he doesn't get in. Plus I'll be bummed not to get that trip he promised, to Bora Bora, in one of those over-the-water bungalows. I've got, like, seven bikinis all ready for that.

The second breakfast cheered me just as much as the one with Bobby. Heather B and I went to Julia's on Queen Anne, which was almost completely empty when we got there at 10:30. H looked at the menu and said "Don't you hate it when they give things names that would make you embarassed to order?" and pointed to the Cinnamon Yum-Yums. So, of course that was what I ordered. It was deeee-licious! Please, french toast made out of slices of cinnamon rolls? Of course that's gonna be good. Provided you have already had an egg breakfast. I will always pick the egg breakfast over the starch breakfast, though I will gaze longingly at the swedish pancakes, the dutch babies, the malted waffles with blueberries on top. Still, eggs take priority.

So, we've learned something today, about what makes me happy. Breakfast, as frequently as possible. It's even better if it's in bed. Just for the record, neither of today's breakfasts took place in bed.

Oh, and as far as the happiness goes - the Hawks didn't hurt. Even though, as I told Pam, I was a little sorry it was the Redskins we beat today, and not the Cowboys.


Tuesday, January 01, 2008

The End of The Week of One AM Text Messages

Mug O Crayons - sure sign of a good breakfast


So, there's a whole post about last night, but I'm not ready for that yet. 8:45 PM is pretty late to be up on New Year's Day, so I'm thinking we'll just give you the shorter story. The day-after story.

I was sort-of, um, joy-filled today. I didn't really expect that. I didn't think it would be a bad day, but I've been a little ... difficult lately. Crabby. Reclusive. Mopey. Probably some other things too, definitely some other things, but we won't dwell on all that.

Because today was just fun. Have you ever been to the Original Pancake House in Ballard? Yeah, it's that place that sort-of looks like it's in a strip mall, up the street from Showgirls. Bobby wanted to have breakfast at Showgirls, but I told him "Noooo!" He was skeptical about the OP House, until I told him that the nice food critic lady on NPR said it was good. He's easy that way.

I felt a lot better than Bobby did this morning

Now, it is true that "Cops" was on the TV for a good portion of the time we were there, even though there were a lot of perfectly good football games on, and it didn't have the unadultered 70s flair of Cindy's, it was kind-of more Kountry Kitchenish, all laminated looking wood, but this morning, that place was a well-oiled machine. Mmmm... thin, lovely Swedish pancakes with lingonberries, scrambled eggs with ham and cheddar cheese, eggs not overcooked, as they so often are in these situations. Sourdough toast, good jam, fresh squeezed grapefruit juice... I was happy.

First latte of the New Year

But you didn't think I drank the coffee there, did you? Fiore was closed, none of those kids would agree to open the day after the big night, but Bobby always has an idea for where to go for coffee, so we visited the cute girls at Fremont Coffee Company. Quite tasty.

Then we took off. Hit the road. It was such a beautiful day in Seattle. Mountains everywhere, all snow-capped. And maybe this is just the thing about being bummed lately, but it seemed sort-of funny and miraculous that they strike us all as something beautiful, that we all get pleasure from looking at them somehow.

So, we drove out to West Seattle, tooled around the neighborhoods there, drove along Alki, and then zipped out 90 towards Snoqualmie Falls.


Where we just about froze to death. It was so windy there today! But driving out there was a nice adventure and it made me really want a piece of cherry pie. New Year's resolution numero uno - lots of field trips, even if they have to be a little more local this year.

Final stop of the day on this field trip? Back to the hood for late lunch. I've always had this theory about the Dick's Deluxe. I thought that in order to truly appreciate this fine $2.20 burger, you had to grow up on them, hang out at whichever drive-in was affiliated with your high school, all that good stuff. Eh, I was wrong. Even Bobby likes em.

After burgers with Bobby, I went to see my girl Susan. There was knitting, and googling and girl talk and a little Tivo. Sometimes it just doesn't take a lot to be happy. Today felt like one of those days.