We survived her first holidays

2004-12-26 - 11:13 a.m.

There was a 1-2-3 tricyle that starts off as a rocking horse, then rolls around with a handle for mommy and daddy to push and finally, snaps off to be a real tricyle. There was the Fisher Price electronic house which I highly recommend. Lots of fun activites and doesn't take up as much room as some of those other gigantic houses.

There was a Sesame Street couch/hide a bed (child size). There were several chinese dolls, include the talking Ling dool. A water magnadoodle to take on the cruise, a coloring book and some crayons, a couple of DVDs, books and puzzles.... She was pretty spoiled. Of course, I'm not including the infamous basement TV and her computer... that's right, my 21 month old has her own computer at grandma's house. Grandpa works with computers for a living and took an old computer (probably the one I took to college!) and set it up with a kid's software that basically plays peek-a-boo with her when she bangs away on the keyboard!!!

She was well behaved, had lots of fun meeting all my uncles, aunts and cousins, but she liked the 3 kids of my brother's best friend best. They were thrilled to have a baby to take care of and she followed them around like a puppy.

Today, she is cranky and tired and just *off*. Hopefully, a quiet day at home, rocking on her tricyle, delivering the mail to her little house and cuddling with the new dolls will reset her internal clock and return our happy, giggly toddler.

Anything to add? 0

Ah! it's the Shopping Crazies Season Again!

2004-12-23 - 8:10 p.m.

I'm working the evening shift at the store, trying my best to help last minute shoppers fulfill their xmas lists on their almost last day of shopping (we are opened tomorrow til 6 pm). In general, people are in good spirits, if a little haggared and bothered by the weather. (there is some sort of rain Sunami going on outside, with high winds that keeps blowing the door open and inches of water covering up the ice from the last 3 days... not the best recipe for last minute shoppers at a store that's not in a mall!)

But then, you get people like this last lady... She's standing in the back corner of the store, which I can't see clearly because of the two columns between the cash and that corner, and she holds something up in the air and asks "What's this for?" So I walk all the way to the back and tell her, it's a soap-pump, but you could put lotion in it too. I walk all the way back to the cash, at which points she asks me how much it costs with the 40% off. OK. So she can't do math, that's all right, except I don't happen to know the exact price of every single one of the close to 4000 individual items I stock in the store. So I make my way back there again, 8$, minus 40%, roughly 4.60$ (turns out it's 4.80, but I was close!)..... She looks around some more, moves to a different section and holds something else up, same routine: what's it for, how much does it cost, etc. Except she doesn't ask her questions in succession, she makes sure I'm back at the cash everytime before she asks her next question. I would hang around and be her personal shopper, but there are other people who need my help and need to be rung up. Finally, she gets to the magnet sections. We have lots of magnets. Lots of funny, sort of raunchy magnets, lots of super strong funky colored magnets, lots of hand-painted ceramic magnets. They're called Each an Original, which pretty clearly states, in my mind, that they are... how should I put it... EACH AN ORIGINAL! So they aren't cheap, 10$ a piece for the large ones, 12$ for a set of 4 small ones. But, they happen to also be 40% off right now, so I'm not exactely gauging you there lady. But she's complaning.... How come everything in this store is so expensive, how can I get away with charging so much...

You know what lady? If you don't want to buy funky, unique, trendy things that cost a few dollars, don't come shopping at a funky, unique, trendy, independant gift store on one of the trendiest shopping streets in the city! Go to the Mall! Go to Wall Mart! But leave my store!

And don't get me started on the crazy woman who was in here at the same time, begging me to give her a lift to Wal Mart after I closed because she needed to go buy cheap gifts and the weather is terrible and she doesn't have a car..... If I didn't know better, I'd think they were some sort of tag-team shoplifters, but I kept an unbelievably close eye on them AND turned on the record function on my webcam/security system and reviewed the tape after they both left....

Anything to add? 3

Where are the extra loads?

2004-12-22 - 10:19 p.m.

CRAP! I had just typed a most excellent post and accidently hit the Back button.....

First, let me welcome any visitors from Bob's Blog Awards. It was great to me nominated, but the hits from the Random Nominee of the Days have really been amazing!

Second, I'd like to give a shout-out to Amber of The New American Family for her comment about my last post... Seems the reason I'm having such a hard time with the wiring of the entertainment center is that I'm trying to install the components into a radiotor grate!!! That picture was actually of an IKEA CD rack, but it gave the general idea of the wall-mounted piece.... Still, props to Amber!

Now, I had written 2 very long paragraph adressing my husband's post about a parenting hiccup he encoutered this morning, but mostely I was just rehashing his post, so just read it there instead!

I did have a curious question go through my head earlier this evening as I was doing the Dumpling's laundry. You often hear mothers who feel overwhelmed about how much they do in a given day/week complain about the amount of laundry they have to do. I recenlty saw a new mom on TV complain that she now had do do SEVERAL loads of laundry a day... Am I missing something here?

Here is the laundry situation in our house: our cleaning lady comes 2 mornings a week to get the house in shape and she does the adult laundry, which means mine and my husband's, along with linens. I take care of the Dumpling's laundry myself, once a week. I know the cleaning lady does 3 to 4 loads a week, plus a 5th every second week when she attempts to remove the dog drool from the comforter cover. So two adults, clean clothes 7 days a week, very minimal amount of dry-cleaning (we only go about once a month) equals 3 to 4 loads a week.

The Dumpling wears one to two outfits a day depending on how dirty she gets at lunch, plus pajamas every night, an odd extra sweater here and there. This gives me one load of lights, one of dark, once a week. I try to stain-treat everyday before I put the dirty clothes in the hamper, and if something might stain permanantly, I will soak it, but that's it.

So I don't understand where all the laundry people complain about comes from? Am I totally missing something here? Did I skip a chapter in home-ec? I can see how someone might do a load a day if they were really worried about stains, but how on earth could you end up with more than one load a day? Even if I gather all the dirty clothes the 3 of us have at the end of the day, that would still be only a half-load.... Someone enlighten me!

Anything to add? 4

A Tangled Web of Wires

2004-12-22 - 9:45 a.m.

Lesson learned last night: do not attempt to relocate your large tv/entertainment system/surround sound components at 10:30 at night. Nothing good can come of it.

Weeks ago, we ordered a stunning piece of furniture to house said components and try to keep the Dumpling from constantly turning all the knobs and setting the surround sound to some incomprehensible settings that rendered watching TV completely impossible. Because it was made to order, the piece came only last night. We knew we were going to be last on the delivery route because of the installation required.

My parents were kind enough to take Dumpling for the day and feed her dinner so I could get the components out of their current badly designed (came with the tv) piece. I decided for simplicity's sake, to simply move the whole thing forward a few feet to let the guys install the new thing behind it, and then, I (mistakenly) thought, I would slide all the components onto the new piece and have minimal wire rearranging to do.....

Not so much! The old piece was a plastic and glass low, open shelves that comes standard with all tvs. It was way to easy for her to reach, but it also made it a snap to reach the wires in the back. The new piece is basically a low wooden box with doors and a wall-mounted wooden back with slats to insert floating shelves. This is a very loose interpretation of the system, until I can get a real picture:

Sooooo, the idea was that we would thread the wires through the wholes so that you wouldn't see any wires..... Sounds like a plan. Except that with a TV, DVD, VCR, CD Player, Sub Woofer, Speakers, and the Tuner that controls the system, that's a shit-load of wires! It started out pretty well, when I had the brilliant idea of unpluggin one end of each of the wires and labeling them with tape, to make it easy to plug back in. We managed to thread about half of them until we realised that we had put a shallow shelf at the top, and the Tuner was too deep and we would need one of the deep shelves... This involved lifting the super heavy tuner without unplugging anymore wires and ended up causing the Tivo to tumble off its shelf. Thankfully, it was plugged in already and the wires kept it from meeting its demise.... But by midnight, when I only had the VCR left to plug in, I decided to leave it. I can't remember the last time we played a tape, so it can wait. It's still not perfect. A few of the wires couldn't be threaded horizontally so we can see them, and of course, it's going to drive me nuts until I fix it.

Now, I'm sure you are wondering why I decided to take on such a crazy task so late in the evening... Priorities people! We had to watch TAR and House first! Actually, they came so late with the furniture, then my parents brought the baby back and she had to be put to bed (She refused to nap at grandmas and ended up falling asleep in her dinner plate! My dad's got the pics to prove it!) and we got my dad to install a second hard-drive in the computer so I can edit our home movies, but the time they left, I was pooped and we watched TV. But when we were done, it occured to me that until I got it done, the basement would be off-limit to Dumpling because of the easy access she would have to all the electronics, hence the late night wire-marathon.

Now, for TAR.....
To Be Contined? Before the holidays? ARE YOU KIDDING ME?!?!? How cruel! The only thing that makes it sting a little less is the cab driver kicking Spazzpants out of his cab.... I do hope Lauri and Bolo manage to catch up at some bunching, becasue I am just not ready to let them go yet. Props to the constestants for using their heads to come up with a clever way to carry to canon balls. (Dirty balls... heeee!)

Anything to add? 2

The Ice Age is coming back

2004-12-20 - 10:08 p.m.

holy crap! It was C*O*L*D today. -24 Celcius, -38 with the windchill factor. I actually searched for a conversion chart and it means -12 Farenheit, -36 with the windchill. (isn't weird how when it gets that cold, the two measuring system converge. like it's so freaking cold, theycould only come up with one set of measurements!)

Now I live in Canada, born and bread, so the cold doesn't scare me. What does scare me is how early it is in the winter for this kind of bitter cold. Used to be (when I was young, back in the 70's!!!!) that Decembers were mild, an intro to winter. You were lucky if you had nice fluffy white snow on Christmas eve. The bitter cold didn't roll around til mid January. But now, it's freaky how cold it is in the middle of December!

To make matters worse, I decided to rent a DVD to pass the time at the store this afternoon. When it's this cold, we don't get too many shoppers on our lovely little neighbourhood street. But I made the mistake of getting The Day After Tomorrow, which is, of course, about freakish weather and the return of the ice age. So when I left work and got into my car and it sort of whinced and cried before starting, I convinced myself in that one second that we were indeed facing the end of the world!

This weirdly brings me to two topics: the DVD rental machine and my non-winter package car.

On the street where my store is, there is now a DVD rental machine. It's like a big ATM, with 5 screens. You pop in your card, surf through their listings and select your movies. Pop you card into the dispenser and voila! Movies to go. And if you return your movies within 6 hours, they're only a dollar a pop! This is great for me, because my hours of work are usually under 6 hours, so I can watch a movie and return it on my way home. Plus it allows me to watch really crappy movies that I would never otherwise admit to seeing... I don't have to bring them home! It's bad enough my husband knows about all the crap reality TV I watch, I don't think he could bare knowing that I saw Princess Diary II AND The Prince and I (or whatever that thing was called with Julia Stiles)

Now, my non-winter package car. When my husband decided to buy me a car 2 years ago, we were thinking ahead to kids, and we already had one large dog, so we got a small SUV, a Toyota Highlander. It's great, I love my car. But at the time, it came in 3 levels: base, medium and high end. The base level came with flashers and breaks.... The medium level had leather seats and you know, seats! And then there was the high end model, with the winter package, including the heated seats (or butt-warmers as I like to call them). The problem was, the winter package was attached to all kinds of other high-end crap I did not need or want, like fog lights and 6 CD Changer and fancy wood paneling on the dash. I didn't want to be a spoiled wife and I just couldn't justify all that crap, so we opted for the nice comfortable medium package. The problem is, I'm always cold. Leather seats and Canadian winters: not a good combination. It takes so damn long to heat the inside of the car because of it's size, I never get warm before I get to where I'm going. I did go to Canadian Tire last winter and buy a seat cover that plugged into the lighter and heated the seat, but it's also a massage chair and I really don't like how bulky it is. I have to readjust the whole driver's seat just to sit on it. So I freeze my ass off, for now. But trust me, next car, I don't care how much that darn butt warmer costs, I'm getting it! (especially with the ice age coming.....)

Anything to add? 5


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Copyright Mortimerís Mom 2004. But just ask, I give my permission easily!