Sunday, October 31

Happy Halloween!

Today, the kids and I carved jack o' lanterns.

Or, rather, I carved and they watched.

Sorry there's no pic of Holly, but she went down for a nap shortly before these pics were taken. I'll add some more later.

I don't think we'll do trick or treating. No costumes, and the kids are still half-sick with colds. But we could at least light up some pumpkins. :-)

Saturday, October 30

Twas a dark and stormy night

Man, the witches were really flying last night.

Last night a big rainstorm moved in late, and poured on us for most of the night. But in the early evening, it was perfectly, totally clear. Even with city lights, you could see lots of stars. And it was windy.

It got more and more windy as the night wore on. I laid in bed and listened to it roaring in the juniper outside the bedroom window, and the leaves scurrying along the sidewalk.

Where do all these leaves come from that I hear scurrying? In the morning I go out, and they're leaves from no trees we have around here. The wind must have chased them for blocks.

It was easy to imagine, listening to the leaves and the wind roaring, that the witches were out flying on their brooms, and so were the bats.

Although if I were a witch, I wouldn't fly around in stormy weather. I'd much prefer a warm night in June with no wind. But then, I'm not a witch.

Once it started raining, though, all the witches went home, or the water would shrivel them up. The wind stopped and it became just a peaceful patter of rain for the rest of the night.

Insomnia, at least you're good for one thing: listening to storms.

Thursday, October 28

Indoors clothesline

Lying in bed this morning, I pondered my laundry options. I only had two dollars in quarters, yet to wash and dry two loads would cost four dollars. A dollar for each wash and a dollar for each dryer.

"What if I just strung a clothesline through the apartment?" I wondered to myself.

So I did. And this is what it looked like.

It stretched from the doorknob ...

...all the way to the cupboards in the kitchen. And I still didn't have enough room to hang everything!

It was a warm, dry day, but I think it would have worked better in the summer, with a fan on them. Some of the jeans just wouldn't dry, and I have them hung in various places where they'll be out of the way for the night.

I couldn't leave that clothesline up. Imagine getting up in the middle of the night and walking into it. Ugh!

The munchkins thought it was the best thing ever. They knocked all the clothes off the line over and over, and Alex found it great fun to meticulously put them all back on. Especially all the socks, for some reason.

Monday, October 25

Fun with munchkins

Today was chilly and windy. I let the munchkins outside this morning, to find that the gardeners had been bushwhacking.

Alex likes playing with sticks.

Yes, I know they're oleanders. I watched them both like hawks to make sure no oleander was ingested, and they had to wash their hands when they were finished.

Holly wanted to help look after the bird while I cleaned his cage, so she got to carry him around on her shoulder.

Her bemused expression speaks volumes.

Thursday, October 21

Missed Wordless Wednesday

(Click to enlarge)

I was going to post this yesterday, but got busy with my commission pic (which you can see over on my art blog) and forgot to post it. Thus it is Thursday, and I have to use, you know, WORDS.

The clouds looked so Halloweenish last night, drifting past the moon, that I had to get a picture. I even got the star over there to show up.

There's a red dot off to the left, too, which I think is an airplane. But upon zooming in and turning up the brightness ...'s obviously a UFO. *grin*

Tuesday, October 19

Stormy weather

We've had a wonderfully stormy couple of days. Remember that Doppler radar picture I posted a few posts back? Well, it turned into quite a storm.

Check out these weird looking clouds coming in ahead of the storm. (You can actually click this one to make it bigger.)

Looks like dark wings, doesn't it? I have no idea what those would even be called.

The wind was blowing so hard that it kept catching the screen door and slamming it back into the wall. Here's Alex, fighting to close it.

He and Holly thought it was great fun to run up and down in the wind.

Later on, when it rained, I put on their little jackets with hoods and let them go out in it.

It made their little day. Of course, they got all wet and muddy, but once they had lunch and were in dry clothes, they both slept about three hours.

Barn party!

I'm attending a blogging event today ... Every Ruralty's Barn party!

Its like a little contest/blog promotional with giveaways. She also has fun quiz questions all the time to help you write something in your blog, so I thought, why not?

1. Who would you bring with you?

My two munchkins and husband, of course. It's a party!

2. What will you wear to the party? (Remember, it's 60's in the daytime and 40's at night.)

Since it's on a farm, I'd wear jeans or heavy slacks, and layer a t-shirt with a long-sleeved shirt or sweater. Same for hubby and the munchkins. Even if it's in the 60s, it gets warm out in the sun.

3. What would you most like to see on my farm?

Everything! Hopefully you have chickens. If not, we'll be totally entertained by horses, pigs, and whatever else you might have. (Pumpkins?)

4. What dish would you bring since it's pot luck?(Optional: You can post a recipe or photos of a dish if you'd like.)

I would probably bring Shepherd's Pie, since I hear it's good at potlucks. If you've never had it, it's ground beef in gravy on bottom mixed with carrots, and covered by a couple inches of mashed potatoes. A complete meal in one dish! It's also great for using up leftovers. Not that I'd bring leftovers to a potluck. *angelic smile*

I'd also bring a peach cobbler, because I have a ton of peaches in my freezer to get rid of.

5. What game or activity would you like to do during our get together?

Play horseshoes? :-) Or give the kids a ball or two and watch them run amok.

Sunday, October 17

Marine air

Our rotten west coast heatwave has broken at last. In the illustrious words of our all-knowing weathermen at the National Weather Service,


Which means that it'll be cooler, and it might rain, or it might not. I mean, just look at the Doppler.

Naturally it's all mostly north of us, but we might get some sprinkles.

So I'm sitting outside with the kids ...

... and the air feels like it's just in from the beach. And I suddenly realized what people mean in books when they talk about the Tang Of Salt Air.

I've read that phrase for years. Whenever we went to the beach, I'd stand and sniff the air, trying to smell some kind of tang. I imagined it might be kind of like lemon juice, or fresh pine. But there's no smell like that at the beach, unless the seaweed is washing up, but even that's not the Tang Smell.

And just today, I figured it out. The Tang of Salt Air is actually that cold, wet bite in the back of your throat. It smells really fresh.

Thursday, October 14

Best snack ever

Munchkins just love peanut butter on banana slices.

I wish I had taken a picture. They were perfect slices with dollops of peanut butter on them, almost like tiny cupcakes.

The little brats refused to eat their pork chops and stuffing, so they were headed to bed hungry. But I had mercy on them and we had a snack.

In other, more educational news ...

A neighbor pointed me to AAA Math, which has all kinds of fun educational things for K-12 graders. I took at look at the Kindergarten activities, and we seem to have done, or be doing, most of those things. It gave me some ideas, though, and when you have to entertain small children, ideas are good things.

It also has printable pages for coloring and things, but I haven't taken a look at those yet.

Still, it encourages me. Everything they'd be learning at age 5, I'm teaching them at 3 and 1, just by showing them stuff and talking to them. Now, if only Joe Scruggs's music would show up on iTunes ...

Tuesday, October 12

Ex ...cer ...sise ...

Today I was sitting around, watching the kids and complaining to myself about various aches and pains.

Then I realized that all of it comes from not exercising.

When it got so gloriously cool, I wanted to walk every day. But this week it's been in the 90s with high humidity, and I haven't wanted to set foot outside, let alone walk. And I do notice that my whole body tends to function better when I've at least walked around the block.

Anyway, today, I really wanted to do something active, so I busted out the old Stormie Omartian exercise video.

Better Body Workout: Low-Impact Aerobic Workout

(That's supposed to be a picture. If you click on it, you can actually see it.)

It's an easy-peasy workout video for people over 50. I thought, eh, that's perfect for being three months pregnant. I'll just take a jaunt through it. (Me thinking back to when I was in really good shape and this video didn't even make me break a sweat.)

I put it on, and by the end of the warm-up, I was sucking wind. I had to wuss my way through the actual workout, skimping on the arm movements and barely lifting my feet, because it felt like I was working so hard. I also eschewed the abdominal exercise section, because I'm not sure if I should do that while pregnant.

By the end, Holly was doing little marches and turning around in the middle of the floor, and munchkin #3 was running around going, "Mom! I'm having fun!" Alex just watched in bemusement from the sidelines.

I had to lay down for a little bit afterwards, but when I got up to avoid being frolicked, not only were my aches and pains gone, but I was suddenly ravenously hungry. You know, the way you are when you've exercised.

I think I'll keep at it as long as it's hot outside. Maybe I can get a little bit back into shape before #3 arrives. (I'm rather concerned about being a flappy, floppy glob with no muscle tone during labor.)

Friday, October 8

Friday night blog meme

Farmgirl tagged me with the Versatile Blogger Award!

The trouble is, I don't qualify because I'm not going to do all the steps. For one thing, I don't think I even read 15 blogs.

Anyway, here goes the meme:

To accept the Versatile Blogger Award the rules are:

* Thank and link back to who gave you the award.
* Share 7 things about yourself.
* Pass it along to 15 blogs you've recently discovered and enjoy
* Leave your recipients a note, telling them about the award.

Things about Me:

1. I've written videogame fanfiction since I was about 14.

2. My favorite book genre to read right now is juvenile fantasy/science fiction, because you get all the cool worlds and creatures without all the sex.

3. Sometimes I wish I were a black person, because they get to wear really awesome clothes.

4. I am a World of Warcraft junkie.

5. Indie techno bands for the win.

6. I learned HTML and CSS as my foreign language requirement in high school. I can't talk to anyone who doesn't speak English, but man, we could code web pages.

7. My husband and I wrote stories together years before we even started dating.

Now for the blog thing: ....


...I'm too shy. The blogs I like are there in my blogroll. *points* So I don't win the versatile blogger award. Sorry Farmgirl, I tried.

Saturday, October 2

Stormy Saturday

Our weird California heat has mixed with moisture from Mexico, along with some other weirdness about a closed low off the coast. Anyway, all this has conspired to spawn thunderstorms. They sprout over the mountains and then boil out over the valley in the mid afternoon.

Today we actually got some sprinkles of rain, along with some thunder and lightning. Being an urban Californian, I immediately took the kids outside in it, reasoning that if lightning wanted to strike somewhere near, it'd nail one of the trees around us that are much taller than our little juniper.

The thunder and lightning never did get very close, maybe within two or three miles. It sprinkled vigorously for about an hour, but it never stuck around long enough to even wet the pavement properly. Alex made an umbrella ...

...and Holly barely noticed it at all, except when she sat out in it and felt the raindrops falling on her head.

Hah! Name that song!

We also rearranged furniture all day, which turned into one of those long, drawn-out catastrophes that takes hours to clean up. It does look better now, though. But I don't think I'll be able to bend my knees tomorrow.

The storm broke up about sunset, and it smelled so fresh and good outside.


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