Thursday, December 27, 2007
I guess there are a few individuals who are breastfeeding for purely exhibitionistic purposes. However, for the other 99.99% of us, we are doing it to feed our children, not to turn on some dumbass in the street. It seems about as sexy to me as a plate and spoon do. Literally!
Nevertheless, there are people who believe that uncovered always = lewd, and covered always = modest. I imagine they don't understand fetish from a sociological-psychological viewpoint. People can sexualize ANYthing. Breasts, back of neck, ankle, face, amputated limb, braces, whatever you have.
So even if you completely cover yourself from head to toe, there is somebody out there who is going to think you are doing THAT to be sexy just for him, because there are people who are turned on by that, too (see photo at left.)
What I'm trying to say is, it doesn't matter if women breastfeed or not, from a moralistic standpoint regarding being provocative. Someone is guaranteed to be in the wings fetishizing them regardless. So they might as well do what they want.
Friday, December 21, 2007
Those of you--and there are a lot--who've been using that word verification on your blog comments forms, you can give it up now.
I've hardly had a robot spam in...I don't know how long. At least weeks, if not months. Years maybe. And when I have had the odd one or two, I just deleted it right away. Really no biggie.
Adding word verification to your comments form means that I am way less likely to comment on your blog, because a) the extra squinting, interpreting, and typing-in means less spontaneity (no condom jokes here, please) and b) now that Blogger and Google are linked, I have to re-sign in to Blogger every single time I want to comment. I don't know why I can't stay signed in, but there it is, on different computers, too. It never has worked to use the sign-in on the comments page.
So if you have word verification and I commented on your post, it means that I took the trouble to leave your page entirely and go sign in to Google/Blogger (Glogger?) and then return to your page, and then after commenting I did the WV-PITA-thing.
Finally, if you hate every ape from chimpan-A to chimpan-Z: http://www.flickr.com/groups/26588725@N00/pool/
Thursday, December 20, 2007
Thursday, December 13, 2007
Nevertheless, here we all are.
I look about as tired as I felt (which is constant), but it was very nice of the others to get me a birthday cake to distract from how much younger and less tired they look than me. I have great co-interns.
Hoover (California), Little Miss Sunshine (South Korea), NoFun (South Korea) , Capitalist Peeg or CP (Michigan, more or less).
I have to admit that they speculate correctly that being on all fours was a lot easier on my back. Just harder on the knees, and I couldn't go a lot of places in that posture.
Thursday, December 06, 2007
Tuesday, December 04, 2007
Originally uploaded by Lemon2
That's me! Guess I'm not rolling much these days.
After looking through all the Flick'r images entitled "40", I chose this one, and only then discovered that it's an image from my husband's hometown. How odd.
I may post some others too, just 'cause I can.
I was glad to discover that the poet Rainer Maria Rilke shares my birthday, although he's some 91 years older than me, of course. (Wow, is that all?) I loved Letters to a Young Poet.
Perhaps unrelatedly, when I was small I thought I would be a poet, an artist, or a "ballet dancer" when I grew up. My mother heard me saying this to a friend and was worried because she thought I said "belly dancer".
Monday, December 03, 2007
1. Theme: Star Wars
2. Obstacle course carrying the cake to the display table
3. Random paintballing of cake-carriers
4. On ice!
So get those Star Wars cake designs ready. I'm especially looking forward to those super-teetery ones.
On a related note, we received for our nearly-mutual birthday from Argot and Frinky the great present of a DVD of Ratatouille. Presumably because of the rats (for me), and probably also the cookery theme. We watched it several times over the weekend, and TheLimey has declared it his favorite animated film. (Frankly I think he covets the kitchen in the restaurant.) It inspired me to make cheesy spinach sauce over steamed barley, when we thought we had nothing in the place to eat.
So, thanks guys!
I always thought they were just plain ol' headaches because I have never been as debilitated as my mother was by them. Certainly hasn't been what I picture as "one of the world's most debilitating conditions". Also my headaches have historically been easily treated with aspirin (or aspirin + caffeine), and rest and/or yoga. Or massage.
As long as I manage my stress, then I just don't get them. However, sometimes I still will get a headache with nausea if I'm stressed, and also if I have been carrying something (or someone) in a way that tenses my shoulder/ neck muscles too long.
But the real clincher was this. I have always wondered what the heck those were. Sometimes I have gotten them with no headache, especially with lack of sleep. Huh.
But don't forget: as they say, all headaches are at some level stress headaches. I'm guessing that wouldn't include, like, brain tumors. (Or would it?...)
Friday, November 30, 2007
Monday, November 26, 2007
What seems odd is that some coverage completely omits that statement as well as the discussion about the wife leaving him, which in domestic violence circles is pretty well-known as the most potentially dangerous time in a relationship.
Wednesday, November 21, 2007
I operate from the Helms model of oppression and prejudice, which identifies individuals as having many different aspects of social identity (groups we belong to). A person can experience discrimination / prejudice for any identity aspect in which they are a member of the non-dominant group in that aspect. Also, a person can be prejudiced against members of any non-dominant group, including their own.
The most common identity aspects that I examine in my teaching and research are those in Helms's ADDRESSING format. You can look at these aspects (below) and identify for yourself in which aspects you are a member of a dominant group or a subordinate group. Most people are surprised to see in how many aspects they are in a dominant group, because it's easier to notice when we are in a subordinate group.
___Developmental or acquired Disability
Okay. So, it turns out that prejudice seems to be somewhat of a unified construct. That is, if you are prejudiced against people who are in the subordinate group in one identity aspect, you are likely to be prejudiced against other subordinate groups as well. Altemeyer referred to people with high authoritarianism (another construct that is related to prejudice but not the same thing) as being "equal-opportunity bigots." I think this gets the point across.
So there's your background. Now here are some excerpts from my as-yet-undefended dissertation.
Prejudice-reduction measures during the college years have been examined particularly closely by prejudice researchers. Many researchers have found that exposure to diversity experiences (learning about other cultural groups, interactions with individuals from different social groups, etc.) appears to help reduce scores on various measures of prejudice. However, most studies failed to discern between voluntary diversity experiences and "structural" diversity experiences: those that are obligatory for academic or workplace situational reasons. For this reason, it was often unclear whether the kinds of diversity experiences encountered by students during college actually led to useful outcomes of prejudice reduction, or whether they simply showed who would in any case be further developing their pre-existing open-mindedness.
The present study investigated how obligatory, structural, diversity experiences during college might be related to aspects of prejudice-reduction in college students. It was implemented in hopes of finding that structural diversity experiences might help to reduce prejudice levels in individuals.
However, while there appeared to be somewhat of an effect on levels of ethnocentrism/racism, other subscales and overall prejudice did not seem to be affected by structural diversity experiences. Voluntary diversity experiences predicted both prejudice scores and authoritarianism scores, while structural diversity scores did not predict either. Rather, overall prejudice level appeared to influence the amount of voluntary contact individuals had with those in social groups other than their own.
The study also investigated whether psychological reactance appeared to play any part in modifying the relationship between diversity experiences and levels of prejudice and authoritarianism. The study furthermore investigated whether a number of other factors might also be related to prejudice and authoritarianism, such as general psychological pathology, time spent in college, level of education, and demographic characteristics. Certain demographic features predicted prejudice and authoritarianism scores, and psychological reactance was a predictor for authoritarianism scores, but it was not found to moderate the relationships between other variables.
Finally, participants' answers to open-ended questions about their experiences, attitudes, and behaviors were also examined. Themes present in handwritten short answers suggested that many participants were oblivious to their own prejudices and to their participation in a prejudiced social system.
Summary and Conclusion
The present study was implemented in hopes of finding that structural diversity experiences might help to reduce prejudice levels in individuals. However, while there appeared to be somewhat of an effect on levels of ethnocentrism/racism, other subscales and overall prejudice did not seem to be affected. Rather, overall prejudice level seemed to influence the amount of contact individuals had with those in social groups other than their own. Furthermore, themes present in handwritten short answers suggested that many participants were oblivious to their own prejudices and to their participation in a prejudiced social system. One conclusion is clear: prejudice against many groups is still quite in evidence among college students. This is clearly harmful for those occupying oppressed group status among their peers, as well as for those holding prejudices themselves, who appear to be largely ignorant of their complicity. If structural diversity experiences contribute to reduction of racial prejudice, then perhaps they can be examined and adapted for broader application in helping to reduce overall prejudice during this all-important window of developmental opportunity.
Here, additionally, is figure 1 from page 75, which graphically describes some of my findings from the qualitative portion of the study. I'm especially proud of this part.
So I have some, though I can't promise it's good. Caveat emptor.
1. Read Bertram Karon's inspiring article entitled Becoming a First-Rate Professional Psychologist Despite Graduate Education. (Psycarticles link; you may have to find it elsewhere if you can't get into Psycarticles.) Note the information on page 213 regarding choosing a research topic that you like. Also, while there is obviously a great deal of information specific to graduate psychology, there is a lot of useful information regarding graduate school generally.
2. For more and ongoing inspiration, read the classic Writing Your Dissertation in Fifteen Minutes a Day. Keep it with your data sheet collection, your laptop, or wherever your "currently using this stuff" pile is so that when you're feeling unmotivated and your mind is wandering, you can pick it up and leaf randomly through it (that's how I used it, anyway.)
3. Man. Choose your dissertation chair, advisor, etc. ever so carefully. Do they have the same values about work style that you do? Will they nudge you, but without lecturing you or condescending? Will they inspire you? Do they have kids, so they know what the heck that's about, if you have kids?
4. Choose a topic you like. I know, some people think that you will then beat it to death and dislike it by the time you are done, but that may be the sign of a bad dissertation experience that would have made a topic of lukewarm interest completely unbearable anyway. Take the idealist's route and ask a question you really want to know the answer to. Also, I hope that you at least like stats and figuring things out with them, even if you aren't a professional statistician.
5. Be prepared to sacrifice free time for a long time if you have to. Meaning a couple of years perhaps. Your partner really has to get this, too, because it's also his or her free time. (If you have kids, then be prepared to simply never have any free time between child care and dissertation.)
People always emphasize self-care, taking time out, etc. etc. Well, theoretically that's true and as a therapist I should also emphasize that myself. BUT. Self-care has degrees. Recognize that sometimes self-care means that you got to shower that day, eat nutritious food, and take several breaks to nurse and care for a baby. It doesn't always have to mean that you get to take the day off and go to the beach. Some days it might, but remember that every friend you have will want to be the one person you take that much deserved study break with, and then you will be socially booked every weekend and unable to work.
It probably depends what life stage you're at, too. For my life stage, not a lot of beach, but I did get the diss done in...what, I guess three years? Wow, I guess I was writing the proposal in December of 2004. (I did that in three weeks, includes lit review and all, pats former self on back.) But during that three years I also took time off to have a baby, in addition to the usual grad school activities.
6. Choose an easy way to do your study. Choose the easiest way possible, in fact. The best dissertation is a done dissertation. When you have those letters after your name, you can do more and better studies in exactly the painstaking way you were thinking of. They are not for now.
Monday, November 19, 2007
Tuesday, November 13, 2007
Monday, November 12, 2007
** ** **
Worse: it doesn't know "pathologize" or "dogmatism" or "anomia" or "Likert" or....cheez, anything important!
Thursday, November 08, 2007
After seeing this video, I have to wonder why on earth Hatten Er Din is not also on YouTube. (That I can find.) *
Someone, please upload it!
And are there English-language videos anywhere that include silly translations into some other language?
Of course, then they'd have to translate it to English so I could understand it.
*And how could I forget this one? Classic, though the subtitles don't start for a while. Princess Leia is the yodel of life.
What it really boils down to is that when we believe that there is some kind of universal law about how we (and others) "should" be, any time there is a deviation from that "should", we feel anxiety. A lot of times we are so used to "shoulding" ourselves that the thought has become very automatic and quick, such that we may not even recognize it as a thought. But it is.
The reason that a deviation from "should" provokes anxiety is that at some level we are telling ourselves that, basically, "I will die if things are not the way they 'should' be." This may sound like an overstatement, but time after time when I ask a client to dig down through their fearful beliefs--without censoring themselves, no matter how unrealistic the fear--the bottom thought they are always shocked to discover is "I will die".
For example, "If I don't ace this exam, I will do poorly in this class. If I don't do great in this class, my academic career will be completely ruined. If my academic career is completely ruined, then my parents will stop supporting me. If my parents stop supporting me, I will not be able to support myself adequately. If I am unable to support myself adequately, then I will end up homeless. If I end up homeless, I will freeze to death in an alley, alone." This is a lot more common than you think. I bet you have some thoughts like this that you haven't examined, either--I know I did.
If you will notice, the example person has unconsciously gone from "I should ace this exam" to "...or else I will freeze to death in an alley, alone." I would feel anxious about the exam, too, if I thought my life depended on it! If you lay out the path of the thoughts like that, the person can see what a ridiculous message they are giving themselves. But that's the problem with automatic thoughts--they go immediately from A to C with little recognition of that whole chain in between. Just recognize that we almost exclusively use "should" to beat ourselves up pointlessly.
A way to subvert this is to take the "should" and frame it as a desire or preference, rather than an imperative. In the example above, the person could reframe the "I should ace this exam" into "I want to ace this exam, because I want the consequence of doing well in this class." Reframing a "should" as a preference or want helps to reduce the fear for two reasons: 1) it subverts the whole "...or I will die" message and turns it into "...but I will still be okay if it doesn't happen", and 2) framing anything as a want leads directly to a goal-oriented train of thought such as "I will get the text and study the material" instead of to paralyzed agonizing or procrastination.
So, with apologies to a whole lot of people (we compiled this list from a lot of sources that I don't even know any more), here is a big honkin' list of common "shoulds" for you to look over to see if you recognize some of your own. (Actually, it's easier to start by noticing the "shoulding" that others are doing to themselves.) Oh, we "should" others, too, which leads to anxiety for us as well, but that's another day's work.
I should be the epitome of generosity, consideration, dignity, courage, unselfishness
I should be the perfect lover, friend, parent, teacher, student, spouse
I should be able to endure any hardship with equanimity
I should be able to find a quick solution to every problem
I should never feel hurt; I should always be happy and serene
I should know, understand, and foresee everything
I should always be spontaneous and at the same time I should always control my feelings
I should never feel certain emotions, such as anger or jealousy
I should never make mistakes
My emotions should be constant -- once I feel love I should always feel love
I should be totally self-reliant
I should assert myself and at the same time I should never hurt anybody else
I should never be tired or get sick
I should always be at peak efficiency
I should be liked and approved of by everyone
I should always be successful in the things that I do
I should be further ahead than I am in life
I should always do things perfectly
I should be thin/muscular/sexy
I should have a boyfriend/girlfriend
I should be the same as everyone else (I shouldn't be different)
I should feel confident in every situation
I should be clear about my future and know where I am heading
I should always say the right things at the right time
I should always be able to meet other people's expectations
I should always do what people want
I should always feel calm and in control
I should always be happy
I should never make mistakes
I should put other people's needs before my own
I should never say anything that might make other people feel uncomfortable
I should always make the right decisions
I should be attractive
I should be popular
I should always make the right decisions
I should always look calm and in control
I should be a good student
I should have lots of friends
I should try to please my teacher
I should drive a particular car
I should wear certain brand labels
I should be in with the popular crowd
I should have a cool Ipod and mobile phone
I should be seen at cool venues
I should have lots of friends
I should be competent in everything that I do
I should never make mistakes
I should have lots of money
I should be successful
I should have a cool guy / chick to go out with
I should always be able to say something funny or clever
I should be able to impress the people that I like
I should always try to please my friend
I should feel confident in every situation
I should never need anything
I should always be patient and empathetic
I should never be scared
I should always put my children's needs ahead of my own
I should never be upset about anything anyone says
I should never experience time or energy limitations, or tiredness
With my great intelligence I should have no relationship difficulties
I have forgiven my parents so I should not have any unpleasant feelings towards them
Saturday, November 03, 2007
Thursday, November 01, 2007
After spending today (a Saturday) at the office, I can say that I'm finally feeling excited about the completion of my dissertation. It's been a huge, endless* plain of information upon which I've wandered for lo, these past coupla years, but now the narrow gully that is the end of my journey is in clear sight.
What we'd been doing is having TheLimey watch Limelet on weekends while I worked on my diss. This worked like a charm. That is to say, most of the time it didn't work at all, and when it did, it may well have been coincidence.
I was doing maybe only an hour or two's worth of work and taking eight hours to do it, because of the constant distraction and interruption. Limelet can't stand having me at home but inaccessible. TheLimey can maybe take him outside for a little while, but that's limited, and also often requires my help to get him ready to go or to get him settled and fed and so on when they return.
So we finally hit upon the obvious solution, which is that I should just take my laptop and materials and head in to my office. After all, it's just across campus. That has worked great! Just a few hours of work actually yields results. It turned out that the building is locked on Sundays, though, so I had to go to the Union then. Still worked well, though less comfortable than my own office with all the amenities 'n' stuff.
Now I've completed 8 of the 16 tables/charts/appendices that are necessary to finish my dissertation. I think that means I'm officially within spittin' distance. After that, I just need to fix some formatting in my references section (easy) and then fix the verb tenses throughout my results/discussion section.
So all you edit-y types, any volunteers to read those sections and help me with the verb tense part?!
Sunday, October 21, 2007
Thursday, October 18, 2007
Monday, October 15, 2007
Long story short, I renewed just the domain name again last November, but before it was up for renewal, just for the sake of uniformity with my other domain names. Come May, the Australian sister site began sending me "URGENT! Your domain is up for renewal!" notices, which I ignored as redundant and automated. I've had similar messages for the others, at times, that came to naught, because I had already renewed them! But then in August this year, apparently they sold my domain name to someone else.
My husband noticed it before I did, as I don't have time to play with web stuff these days (not that he does either, but somehow he noticed it.) At first I thought it was just one of those placeholder kind of pages, until the other day when for a different reason I was looking at my Yahoo business domains control panel (or whatever the heck they call it). I realized that not only was I unable to access that particular site, but WHOIS said it was registered to [identity screen] in Oregon and it was locked. So yay. But here I am, still paying $9.99 per year for it, in perpetuity.
Having a bit of insomnia last night, I had the brilliant inspiration to bill the current user. So I wrote out an invoice and emailed them a bill for nearly $900 dollars. I think $299 a month to use my domain name for their search engine is reasonable, don't you? I also emailed the Australian IT company and told them politely that I was doing this, and that if the current individual or organization was unresponsive, I'd be sending the bills to their company. Since I don't feel terribly emotionally invested in the site, I feel freer than I normally would to push the limits a bit and see what results I can get.
Heck, it was their responsibility to make sure they weren't double-selling a domain name. And Yahoo--they should have protected my domain name, so it's their responsibility, too. Maybe I'll write them later if I have further insomnia.
Yes, I should have replied to the emails about renewing--just this once--but how is a person supposed to know when to really do it when it's always been okay to ignore it as redundant before?
*2002. See my reply to my own post. Duh.
Thursday, October 04, 2007
It's true that it's very busy, and there have been a number of days upon which I had to stay later to get my paperwork done. However, I really like it nonetheless. I believe I have really made the correct career choice, and I look forward to practicing on my own later. The site I'm at is very culture-conscious, so I really feel I'm settling into my "niche" as far as later work.
I'd like to add more research to my CV to enhance teaching opportunities, but time constraints are making that pretty hard. I can't really do any at home as I take over Limelet-care on evenings and weekends, and I have nearly no minutes to spare at work, though we're supposed to do SOME kind of research during the year. (I say this despite my writing this post. I had someone reschedule, so I'm trying to catch up on paperwork kind of stuff. Not enough time to get into much of the research, though.)
TheLimey and I have both been looking into jobs for next year, which is partly nerve-wracking and partly exciting. He's looking at updating his training, and I'm looking at getting some kind of clinical work. I know 80% of jobs are not posted, which probably holds more or less true in my field as well. That means I have to find some other ways of looking for positions.
The next hurdle for me (after revising and defending my dissertation, of course) is to get work that leads to being licensed in the state where we will live. This typically means about 2000 hours (about a year's worth) of clinical work postdoctorally (after diss defense), which has to be supervised by someone licensed who has a PhD in Clinical Psychology (the same degree I will have). Then there will be a big, big licensing exam that I have to pass.
Then after that, I can do whatever I want! Within ethical reason, of course.
Teaching doesn't require a license to practice (treat), but it also doesn't lead to licensure. They're kind of separate.
I miss my baby while at work, but he's doing well with Daddy and he's becoming socialized to other children and adults, which is good. I believe that this week they will go to see members of Cirque du Soleil at the local library. (Cirque du Puree for you Simpson's aficionados.)
Sunday, September 23, 2007
Tuesday, September 11, 2007
Wednesday, September 05, 2007
Yeah, it's late for labor Day. But you gotta love Jack Lessenberry.
Wednesday, August 29, 2007
Friday, August 24, 2007
A brief moment of respite. The internship is great, but it's really time-intense right now during training. As opposed to later, when we've been assured there will be a ton of work and we'll be BIH ZEE.
I'm definitely experiencing role conflict as I attempt to juggle sequential three-hour seminars with pumping milk and racing home to nurse on the lunch hour. The second I leave home I have to buckle down to work, and the second I get out of the car at home I have to buckle down to baby work. So I'm pretty darn exhausted, what with not having slept five hours in a row at any point in the past eleven months.
Today we got a bunch of brochures and information about self-care, yoga classes on campus, etc. etc. (along with the information that we'll be extremely busy later). I'm trying to figure out exactly when I'll do any self-care, since my lunch hour is not available and even my bathroom break times are taken up with pumping milk. Evenings and weekends are when I relieve Dad from baby care duties.
Limelet and Limey seem to be making the caretaker transition well, though the new arrangement is hard on them in some ways, too. The large trees are a great relief for me. The playground and swimming pool are a relief for Limelet.
I don't know what's a relief for TheLimey. Probably the knowledge that we sold the house last year and missed* the housing crash. He seems to like campus, too. I think he finally went to check out the nearby pub/cafe just now. I'm encouraging him to do stuff like that whenever possible so that my custom child care giver doesn't go insane! As I did last year, trapped by winter in the house.
There is another intern with a baby Limelet's age, and her husband is working in another state, poor thing. She seems to be holding up better than me, bless her little heart. I don't know how!
*I should actually say "avoided", since he was following the whole thing for years on NPR financial programs and knew it was impending. Which means that I knew about it all, too whether I wanted to or not.
Sunday, August 19, 2007
Friday, August 10, 2007
Found out our location one day before moving. Apartment is teeny tiny but would be liveable--except that it has a really, really, filthy, filthy carpet, despite supposedly having been "cleaned" before we moved in. I mean it's vile. It's like living in someone else's dirty sock. It leaves a grey coating on our feet. It's revolting.
It's sucking up most of our time trying to get everything unpacked and arranged in a hurry so we can rent a carpet shampooer and do it ourselves.
Limelet gets to go on the nearby swings several times a day now. He's addicted! Also, lots of squirrels to amuse him, as well as a cafe/pub within strolling distance for TheLimey.
Thursday, August 02, 2007
I can't believe I lived here for two years! It's a town that feels like everyone is just passing through. Probably due in no small part to the well-traveled highway going right through the downtown, with hardly anything going on more than 20 feet from that highway.
Nevertheless, it's the town where we were married and brought our baby home from the hospital, and where he spent most of his first year of life. Therefore I feel sentimental about the honeysuckle.
I will also miss the library, where Limelet and I spent many a happy Thursday looking at books and movies, nursing semi-secretly, and where he would take a morning nap on a soft blanket in the grass between the lovely volunteer-tended flower gardens out back as birds from the adjacent woodland sang overhead. There was almost never anyone else in the gardens; we made them ours.
We returned the last DVD of Season 2 of Lost today. That'll be the last library trip. I didn't say goodby to the library ladies who always knew where my holds were. I thought that I'd be going there to return those videos myself today, but TheLimey just ran in to drop them off as we were in a hurry.
Goodbye honeysuckle, goodbye library ladies, goodbye library flower gardens.
Wednesday, August 01, 2007
This post isn't on my mothering blog because people who read that one probably already know about it.
If that "breast crawl" item a few paragraphs down on that link is what I think it is, it's a pretty cool video.
On a completely different note, here's a very misleading link about boobies and babies.
Saturday, July 28, 2007
We've been packing again today and also some other things that you can see a few of as I've been furtively trying out Chorewars.
Thanks to Argotnaut for hooking me on yet another blasted internet toy! At least now I'm getting some gratification for things I have to do already.
PS: the list of "adventures" completed is far from exhaustive.
Tuesday, July 24, 2007
Monday, July 16, 2007
Move: three weeks.
Internship: one month.
Meanwhile, I'm still trying to complete the dissertation in small chunks of time on the weekends. I'm making progress but it's maddeningly slow.
This photo makes it look like I'm a Lidy of Leisure, but that's only because you can't see the bags under my eyes so well in that green shade. Limelet loves that pool insanely. I love that I get to sit down.
Thursday, July 05, 2007
Since new member posts are moderated, I denied the post, and also dumped the guy from the group. No need to accept people who'll send messages like that to 400 local citizens, who'll then complain to me. He immediately attempted to re-sign up, which I denied.
Then he emailed me and said he was going to sign up under another ID. I replied that was fine as long as that ID respected the group rules, to which he responded "nope," and then began signing me up for all kinds of random online stuff. I know this because I started getting a bunch of "confirm your new account!" emails in my inbox right after this exchange.
I hope he can't do any real damage.
* * * *
A few minutes and a brief Google search later...
I see from an online discussion that the selfsame guy is embroiled in a child custody dispute. What a great dad to have!
Wednesday, July 04, 2007
So, happy Fourth! Thank goodness we got those Brits out of our hair.
Sunday, July 01, 2007
But I did really love Amazon Prime (discontinued that temporarily as we are saving our dough for more important things right now), love the free shipping on many items, and we do have an Amazon credit card since we use them so much anyway, what with all our book buyin'.
And what wonderful books have I gotten with our recent Amazon "rewards"?
I could have gotten some technical and/or reference books that TheLimey and I need for our respective careers, or even some of the pages and pages of books that we each have on our wish lists, or I could have made up some non-gift-giving to certain relatives (poor things), but instead, I got this, and these, and--my favorite--this.
TheLimey thinks that last thing is too big. He may be right. But I don't care! [sticks fingers in ears] LA LA LA! I can't hear your reasonable doubts! LA LA LA!
Not only will Limelet love it, I want to sit in it myself and drink a margarita. (Just one, so's not to drunken the baby.)
Thursday, June 21, 2007
Our current entertainments:
We've been borrowing Lost on DVD from the library (yay libraries!) and watching it (usually in bed with headphones). I'm kind of glad neither of us watched it on TV. We're on disc 5 of Season 1, and so far it's magically delicious. Ha! Disguised sci-fi. Take that, mainstream programming.
We finished reading the His Dark Materials trilogy. We loved it, loved it, loved it--except for the end of the very last book. Unfortunately it kind of ruined the memory of the previous nine blissful months of reading the rest of the series to each other. If there's one thing that's worse than a really contrived happy ending, it's a really contrived sad ending. I understand some stories have to end sadly, but this one really seemed forced.
While putting Limelet to sleep, I've been reading a lot of Sheri S. Tepper. Old-school feminist sci-fi stories that grip you from the start and never let you go! She's a bit transparent in her themes in a number of of her works (Beauty, The Fresco), but the stories and characters are really compelling anyway.
Anyway, happy summer.
Thursday, June 14, 2007
But I wouldn't wear it to a workday in my profession...
Monday, June 11, 2007
Sunday, June 10, 2007
Saturday, June 09, 2007
I just want to upload some of the things we've been recording all this time to, say, YouTube. I feel guilty that people who just had babies this week have already uploaded clips. However, it's not going to be for a while, probably.
We did got the USB cable recently and I thought it would be a simple process. Unfortunately, Windows believes that the Handycam is in fact my PCTV, no matter what I've done to change that. It wouldn't be such a bad thing except that the Sony USB streaming tool must have different settings than the PCTV, because the sound is so slow and warpy in the transfer that we all sound like the Devil. (Even the bluebirds sound like some kind of slow, evil birds.)
I've uninstalled (supposedly) all the PCTV stuff and all the Sony stuff and reinstalled only the Sony, in various permutations. However, even though the install wizard says that it sees a Sony Blah Blah Thingummy, once it's all set up, the sound settings on the streaming tool still insist that the sound is from the PCTV USB Whatchamacallit. (Even after I uninstalled that driver.)
So anyway, no video clips yet. (At least none with sound.) Sorry. It doesn't mean we haven't been making baby films like mad!
Monday, June 04, 2007
Thursday, May 03, 2007
Monday, April 30, 2007
Or alternatively I'll be buying flowers and taking pictures of them!
But not this year.
Nonetheless, these lovely flowers are about my speed. When I was little, my mother told me about the May Day tradition of leaving flowers on someone's doorstep. So naturally I went out and picked wild violets and dandelions and such and made little bouquets of them, and left them in front of the doors of other apartments in our building. I think it's the closest I got to ever playing "Ding Dong Ditch."
(I won't describe to you what I did when I heard that earthworms can grow back parts of their bodies. Let's just say I'm still traumatized thinking about the results today.)
Monday, April 23, 2007
However, I can't avoid it entirely, so I have seen some coverage of the recent shooting at Virginia Tech. An issue I just knew would crop up is cropping up: references to the shooter being South Korean and how are those Koreans and Korean-Americans taking that fact, anyway?
I know, this doesn't sound so terrible. We all want to know everyone's take on this (that's the press's presumption, anyway). It's the contrast in how the issue is addressed that's always the underlying problem.
With all the White shooters we've had--and there've been a lot, haven't there?--has anyone ever seen any references to "So how is the White community taking the fact that this shooter was White?"
'Cause I haven't. This omission means a lot.
Maybe we should have been asking that.
Sunday, April 22, 2007
I wish there was a more sophisticated one that took more things into account.
For example, if your mother breastfed you (even for a short time), your risk is reduced (I was the only one of my many siblings who was not breastfed, of course). Breastfeeding your own children reduces your risk, primarily if you do it for longer than one year (so I'm definitely going to be doing that, although that isn't my main reason for doing so.) Having children earlier in life reduces your risk, as it "sets" the cells of your breasts so subsequently they don't change every month with your hormonal cycle (I picture them like little Jell-O particles.)
Being on hormone therapy increases your risk--haven't done that, and won't. Hot flashes, here I come. Used birth control pills? Conflicting results show either increased, decreased, or no change in risk (the earlier pills had much higher hormone levels in them, complicating the research.) On the other hand, being on the pill greatly reduces your risk for both ovarian and colorectal cancer, so there you go.
But I digress, which is what I do best.
The point I was going to make is that breast cancer, while quite scary, is way behind other leading health-related death risks, particularly heart disease. Furthermore, some other top killers* of women (depending on the age group) that people seem to ignore a lot are auto accidents, murder (partner or former partner usually), and suicide (women are currently still stuck with higher depression rates).
So while you're wearing your red dress pin or your pink ribbon as you walk (or whatever you do) for a cure, don't forget that we need your admirable endeavors to improve other aspects of risk, too.
*Maybe someone can make a risk calculator for all these things combined. Now that would be cheery, wouldn't it?
Thursday, April 19, 2007
That's not to say I haven't occasionally desired the odd plain-chocolate cake or licorice whip or whole-wheat brownies with drizzles of coffee icing or whatever. It's just that throughout my life I've usually wanted jerky, potato chips, cheese, mashed potatoes, ramen noodles, deviled eggs, gravy, and so forth, when I've been in a cravy mood.
But since I've had a baby, I've turned into a sweets-craver, too. I even started wanting ice cream (Häagen-Dazs's Caramel Cone). I ate half a bag of semi-sweet chocolate chips the other day! True, someone is literally sucking the life out of me round the clock, but this doesn't account for the change in my tastes, does it?
I recently heard a young woman talk about trying to keep her parents from giving her baby sweets when they're caring for her on weekdays, partly because she now feels like she is addicted to sugar herself and can't stop thinking about it. Reflecting on this later, I remembered an article I read a few years back that stated that when you crave sweets, it may mean you're tired, while if you crave salty things, it may mean you're simply hungry. I thought I could tell this to that other mother next time I saw her, as we were all discussing how exhausting it is taking care of a baby 24/7.
Suddenly, it occurred to me that this could account for my own sudden uncharacteristic sweets-wanting. Of course! I wanted salty stuff before, because I never weighed enough and never really ate enough on a regular basis, I figured that already--but now that I'm exhausted ALL the time, I crave the sugar.
So maybe it will go away in, oh, 18 years.
Wednesday, April 18, 2007
So for several years, the bluebird house that the neighbor put up held a motley assortment of other kinds of baby birds; mainly sparrows, possibly a couple of house finches. Unfortunately, the way she had mounted the house made it lean forward at the top. This made the front "wall" of the little house fall open an inch or so at the bottom, as it was hinged at the top. Thus there was always a litter of nest material sort of dripping out the bottom of the front, and it was clear that cats and/or raccoons and/or possums were happy to just paw at it and eat whoever was living there at random intervals. Not exactly prime bluebird real estate.
Then those tenants moved out, and left little sad bits of landscaping around, including the little birdhouse. During the winter, snow and ice knocked it further off its teetery balance on two nails, so I took it and wedged it firmly in some sturdy branches of the tree next to it, but with the top leaning back so it stayed closed. At least maybe the sparrows could have the chance of raising some uneaten babies come spring.
Then last weekend as TheLimey was returning from a little walkies with Limelet, he phoned me (yes, from right outside our place) to ask "what kind of a bird has red on the front--" house finch, thought I -- "and bright blue all over the back and head?" I instantly dropped my analyses of variance and ran out there like a shot. Yep--Bluebirds nesting!
I can't tell you how something so small and simple just made my week. It was the first nice day after the resurgence of winter that we had, and not only were there bluebirds, there were goldfinches, a brace of cardinals, chickadees, and house finches aplenty. I could hear two different kinds of woodpecker in the wooded lot across the street, too.
Now the birds that mysteriously shunned my feeder all winter seem to be returning to it, along with the tender new leaves on the honeysuckle vines. I heart spring.
Friday, April 13, 2007
It erased the post I had, so bite me. Or bite the post. Something. Here's the link. I expect all of you to follow suit if you haven't already.
Thursday, April 12, 2007
Wednesday, April 11, 2007
I mean something more realistic. Like some evening when the kid is worn out as heck from a long day and hasn't had dinner yet, they should have a 20-lb potato sack strapped to their chest and have to walk and walk and walk and walk around a dim room, for four hours. No bathroom breaks! No snack breaks!
No teenager would ever have (heterosexual) sex.
Ha! Who am I kidding? They still would.
Unless there were booster sessions; maybe weekly ones...
Tuesday, April 10, 2007
1: I've heard that Memorex DVDs are made with the most inferior pigments that deteriorate after a year or so, disintegrating your data/media. Is this true, and if so, what is a good brand to get?
2: My RSS-and-podcast loving partner wishes he could listen to his favorite blogs instead of reading them. Is there a web-based reader-out-louder* that would do something like this? (If not, why hasn't Google jumped on this already?)
*I don't think he means an app on the computer itself. Limelet found that one for me yesterday while engaged in his favorite activity, mashing random keys.
...although I will probably rarely make comments because of the Firefox block. I can't comment without it (from my end, anyway.)
I know, I know! Firefox is better in every way and I should be using it, according to all my smartest friends and relatives. But we're a Microsoft household [Darth Vader breathing sound], especially now that my husband is all certified-up and whatnot.
And when I fire up the Firefox for temporary use, then I have to re-set all kinds of things when I turn Explorer back on.
Nevertheless, it's nice that you're back.
Monday, April 09, 2007
Maybe it will come back, like the stupid snow that returned for April. Only with less cursing and freezing.
So, it's back.
I know it seemed like an overreaction, but when you only have 5 or 10 minutes to do all the online stuff you want to for the day (or week), and you can't predict when that will be or how long it will last, everything seems a lot more significant.