Wednesday, December 31, 2008

100 Favorite Things

My two VERY favorite things... naturally.

Well, you did it before... so here I am to end the year with my list of 100 of my favorite things. There are plenty of things that I am sure I missed... but oh well! Here goes...

1. Baby smiles first thing in the morning
2. Pasta puttanesca
3. Red wine
4. Manhattan at night in the rain
5. Body pillows
6. Hand knit socks
7. Big pre-war apartments with gummy moldings and wavy plaster
8. A brand new razor
9. A fifteen minute shower
10. Nibbling on the chubby underside of a baby’s chin
11. Muscat grapes
12. Freshly grated parmesan
13. Tart cherry juice
14. The lull between 7 and 9 PM
15. The first cup of coffee in the morning
16. Unagi
17. A cold beer on a hot day
18. Clean sheets
19. The Hotel Santo Mauro in Madrid
20. Palacio De Santa Paula in Granada
21. The Chhatra Sagar tented camp in India
22. Having a washer/dryer in my apartment
23. Le Creuset cookware
24. Getting a seat on the subway any time of day
25. Babies dressed up as animals
26. Sushi rice
27. A clean shaved head
28. Stealing Eugene’s socks
29. Digital photo frames
30. Egg baby clothes
31. Petite Bateau baby clothes
32. Mustela bath products
33. The view from our bedroom window in Vermont
34. Getting first tracks after a major snowstorm
35. Spring skiing (well, snowboarding really)
36. Swimming
37. Homemade marshmallows
38. My gold bangles from India
39. Hot chocolate
40. The smell of a fresh-cut Christmas tree
41. Any bubble bath from L’Occitane
42. A clean bath tub
43. Fresh, clean, warm towels
44. The way the babies squeal when you are applying their lotion
45. Deadlines
46. The necklace you sent me for Christmas
47. Emmylou Harris
48. Ricky Lee Jones
49. Fresh steamed lobster dripping in butter
50. The Firetruck parade on the Fourth of July
51. A good nap
52. Sleeping in until 8
53. When the babies wrap their arms around my neck
54. Being able to wear high heels again
55. Spanx
56. A fresh manicure
57. The photo album Dad sent me for Christmas
58. My cashmere blankie
59. The hot tub at the Planter
60. Prosecco
61. The white anchovie and soft boiled egg sandwich from ‘wichcraft
62. A roaring fire in the fireplace
63. Our couches
64. Fresh lobster
65. The video of Eugene dropping me at our wedding
66. Autumn leaves
67. Fog
68. Fat baby bellies
69. Johnnie jump-ups
70. Liquid eyeliner
71. The way Dakota arranges everything to look like a vignette
72. Being the only person in the elevator
73. Hearing ‘Ma-ma-ma’ first thing in the morning
74. Xanadu – the musical
75. The earrings I bought in India
76. The ring Eugene bought to match them
77. A black cashmere fitted turtleneck
78. The second cup of coffee
79. Cranberry walnut muffins
80. The posters I did for Dad’s 65th birthday
81. Our holiday card
82. The books I’ve designed
83. The photo of me and the boys from Babytalk Magazine
84. The Wheel of Time Series – I am such a sci-fi nerd
85. Nigella Lawson cookbooks
86. Mark Bittman cookbooks
87. Having a dishwasher
88. Ziploc bags
89. The moment an airplane takes off
90. The top of the rollercoaster
91. Paintings of birds
92. That the boys have my eyes
93. My c-section scar
94. The beach in the winter
95. The boys’ Christmas hats
96. Nell Thorn’s in LaConner
97. Fleur de Sel in NYC
98. Campagna in Seattle
99. Cuddling the babies at night
100. The blog

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Snowed In

By now, everyone in the world must know that we are snowed in here in Seattle. Especially where I am, on the top of Queen Anne Hill, the western side, on the street just before the hill drops down to Interbay.

It goes without saying that being snowed in as a grown-up isn't the same as being a kid on Capitol Hill, dragging a big saucer toboggan over to the hill by Jenica's house, hoping to run into other neighborhood kids. Now there are days of work missed and worry about whether to drive or not, and the general anxiety of just letting everything drop for more than a week. All plans, obligations, expectations, snowed out. Every couple hours, I hear another set of wheels spinning, look out the window and see a car stuck, or struggling.

So, that's one version of it. But also, there are a lot of cups of tea here at my place, and bowls of soup, and cookies have been baked. There was a good long walk Susan and I took in the snow together, laughing the way we always do together, and there was the night that B and I decided we needed to see each other, and he walked all the way to Queen Anne from Ballard and I walked halfway down, our way through the dark lit by the bright white of the snow, and for me, the happiness of reunion.

Today starts the official break from work, and Jessica will be here soon, and Regan is visiting from DC, and the snow will melt soon, won't it? It starts to seem, after a certain time passes, that perhaps it just never will. What would happen then? We would forget what it is to see the bare arms of a stranger, learn where all the snow shovels in the neighborhood are, base all our outfits on mitten/hat/scarf combinations, and I would clean out my pantry, diminish my tea supply, and finish War & Peace.

Monday, December 22, 2008

The Holiday Update...

Gifts are going overnight UPS today.

Tree got fully lit up and decorated Friday night - with the help of some neighbors and a couple of bottles of yuletide cheer.

We found someone willing to loan us enough beautiful gold ballroom chairs to accommodate everyone.

The apartment is still a mess.

And the boys and I are sick.

You win some, you lose some!

Ho ho ho! Merrrrrrrry Christmas!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Tis the Season!

Tis the season for insanity!

Every year, the holidays fall at the same time - it's no mystery! And yet, every year I find myself behind the eight-ball struggling to get things out the door and afraid that I am falling short.

This year is no exception.

I ordered some of my holiday gifts as early as the beginning of November and yet, here it is December 19th and they aren't in the mail yet.

We bought a Christmas tree last Sunday and it doesn't even have lights on it yet.

Were having 15 people for dinner Christmas Eve and I have 5 chairs. And two high chairs for the boys... but that still leaves me 8 chairs short. I see a trip to Target in my very near future.

I won't even mention what a complete pigsty the apartment is currently. Except for the areas that Nanny Claudia keeps clean, of course. The boys' room is spotless. You could eat off of the living room carpet. I wouldn't like for you to, but you could.

I'm just sayin'.

Argh! I haven't bought a single gift for the boys yet. Though, I think if I just wrapped some magazines and let them go to town ripping them apart, that would probably be their most favorite present. Ever.

On the plus side of all this craziness, I am really excited for the boys' first Christmas. Not that they will know it - probably Christmas 2010 will be the first time they are aware of all the hoopla. This year, I think they will mostly be aware of all the extra strange people around.

And the noise, oh I am sure they will be aware of the noise. Eugene's family = high decibel levels...

And Christmas = Crazymaking.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Where We Find Out What I Have To Say

Hey. I haven't been here much. It's winter, dark for pictures, busy at work, under the weather, in bed with a book, driving in the rain, stuck in traffic, hiding, not knowing what to say, sometimes out, sometimes running, sometimes not.

I have a week and a half left before my week off, and I've taken a running leap into War & Peace, bought a Christmas wreath, and put the second comforter on my bed. It snowed last night, and this morning Andrew brought me a latte, and I drank it while I ate a toasted crumpet, and watched some of the Seahawks. I ate a fancy pot pie out of a porcelain ramekin for dinner, tinkered with a story, did some knitting, took a nap, wore socks I made with my own two hands, and you know, that's pretty much it.

The story is the biggest thing, probably. It's overdue, deadline last weekend, and I missed it, obviously. It should just be revision but in this mood, this hiatus from a certain kind of writing, it just isn't coming together. I haven't made my peace with that all the way yet, so it may still change, it's a matter of moving a scene up in time, adding another, putting a little more meat on the bones of a certain character. All things I could do, I will be able to do, at a different time. How soon that time will come, I can't tell.

Until then, still more knitting, and warm things, and War and Peace and maybe some more naps.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

My Favorite Seattle Photos

At the airport on our way.

I thought I would look all Angelina Joie-ish with my brood of babies... but I just look kind of tired and chubby! No wonder the airline employees were so eager to help us.

See the woman looking at me with pity? She shouldn't! Those are the best babies ever - even if I am tired!

See! Best. Babies. Ever!

Joseph showing Max the ropes in his bedroom. 'Here's how you dump everything out of the bowl! Drives Mommies nuts!'

Joseph holding forth.

Actually I think he was pretending to feed the bowls out of that little bowl. Like they were chickens.

Note the predatory way that they are looking at him. You don't tease my babies about food. Oh no, anything but that.

I just like all the purty colors in this one. Note Thomas's look - as if he is thinking 'is there food, or isn't there? Do. Not. Mess. With. My. Food!'

Feeding time! You'd better shovel that food in quick!

The boys all getting sucked into 'Black Beauty'. Pathos! Drama! Horsies!

The boys, with their first balloons! Asleep in the car.

Dad and Max out to lunch. Max is dressed all grunge-Seattle style with the long sleeves under the Willy Nelson onesie from Mom.

Mom and Thomas making googly eyes at each other. Awww...

Proof that I was there!

Classic Keene-Marsh Family photo. Dakota and Clay look ready to start snacking on all the Joseph scrumptiousness.

Thomas, enjoying the frigid beach.

Max, not enjoying the frigid beach so much.

Max falls asleep on Mom's lap

While Thomas gets all worked up by Eugene.

Dad, showing how good he is at spreading sweet potatoes all over Max's face. A new Thanksgiving tradition!

Thomas, in his favorite napping spot. I dig the cool belt and sweater. Booties by Joyce. I heart them.

The boys at Toby Diamond's houseboat. I think that they were basically trying to make out with their own reflections in the glass...

Things I did not get good photos of:

Dim Sum
Either open house
The Little Red Hen (but let's just admit that it would be impossible to get the right photo there)

I'm pretty bummed out that I didn't take better pictures at the actual 'events', but I think that I got so caught up in them that I completely forgot about taking pictures. And, obviously, my pictures are quite boy-centric. But my life is kind of boy-centric...

Monday, December 08, 2008

One of my very favorite photos of the trip...

Thomas loves a good snuggle.

My intentions are good to do a post. I even have a plan for a post. But I also have had an apartment full of sick boys for the past ten days and have been feeling none too well myself.

So no long trip post yet.

I also have holiday cards to send out.

Watch your mailbox for impending cuteness! Since I pansy-d out on doing a birth announcement - I may be a graphic designer but I had TWINS!!! Not a lot of time to design announcements!!! - Ahem, as I was saying, I didn't do a birth announcement, so I art directed a holiday card.

Hope you like it!

Monday, December 01, 2008

Just one of the reasons why staying with Dakota is great

We had a great trip with everyone, but I thought this video of Joseph (that's a cinnamon stick in his mouth) was hysterical. He is such an exuberant, imaginative, awesome child and every time we see him I just want to kiss his cheeks off.

Some day, he's going to be a rock star...