Thursday, July 31, 2008

How Dumb do they REALLY think we are?

Even though I'm no longer nursing my kidlets, I try to keep up with some news on that front.

This morning, I read this.

(If you don't want to go over and read Jennifer's blog, here's the gist:
A mom made some hand-lettered onsies that read "Got Breastmilk?" and sold them.
Now the California Milk Processing Board is all up on her case, declaring that
The phrases 'got breastmilk' and 'got milk?' are similar except for the addition of the word 'breast,'" the lawyers wrote. "This difference is not enough to eliminate the likelihood that consumers will be confused about the origin of the products."


I mean, really. How STUPID do they think that we are?!?

Show of hands -- Would you be confused between "milk" and "breastmilk?" Would you think that you could go into the grocery store and buy a gallon or two of breastmilk off the shelf? Would you be upset that you can't? Because, obviously, to the CMPB, milk and breastmilk are too close for simple little people like US to tell the difference.

And what's more, the thing that really is stupid, Stephen J. Byers, acting for the CMPB demand that Barbara Holmes, the craft-making mom in question, to avoid a lawsuit, must "cease all sales and marketing, and ship no later than this week, all the T-shirts, onesies and equipment used to make them, as well as an accounting of any profits, 'to avoid resorting to litigation.'"

Um, what? Her shirts are a parody. Has the CMPB hot ever heard of, say, the FIRST AMENDMENT TO THE UNITED STATES CONSTITUTION?!? (Which protects parodies under the area of Free Speech, by the by.)

So, here's the letter that I have fired off to the Executive Director of the California Milk Processing Board:

Mr. Manning,

I have just learned about California Milk Processing Board's case against Ms. Barbara Holmes.

I must say that I find it ludicrous that your company doubts the intelligence of the American public enough that your company feels that a citizen would be confused between cow's milk and breastmilk.

I hope that you and the California Milk Processing Board will soon realize that this is not an infringement issue. It is a simple parody.
(Unless, of course, the public suddenly demand that you sell cow's milk in the same cute containers that produce human breast milk. If that is the case, then this would be an infringement issue. But, until this is the case, I would then be concerned about the mental capacity of the American public. NOT about the similarities between the word "milk" and "breastmilk.")

Please understand that the American public is not quite so stupid and brainless as the California Milk Processing Board or lawyers thereof obviously believe them to be.

Thanks you for your time and consideration in this matter,
[LlannaLee]


** Oh, imagine that, Mr. Jeff Manning's email isn't working.

**UPADTE: I called the office. Mr. Manning is no longer with the CMPB.
Emails regarding this can be sent to jocelyn@gotmilk.com. (And she sounded very nice. So be kind.)
Well, let's hope that there will be enough bad publicity that the CMPB will decide that it's more important for them to instruct the public about what IS and IS NOT "milk" that one can BUY in the STORES than ragging on some poor mom selling some crafts.

But if you want to make a phone call, go to Jennifer's blog. She has some contact information (and the link to the whole story on her site.)

Also funny -- On the comments for the original story, there's quite the discussion. So far 17 for Barbara Holmes, one against.

However, northwestclam brings up a good point:
I wonder if they're going after Barack Obama whose campaign has T-shirts that say -- "Got Hope."


They're not going to get much money out of the craft-mothers that are being targeted (there's another one from Oregon. She was sent a Cease and Desist order. Never heard back from them again.) ... But suing the big Presidential hopeful? There could be some money/notoriety in that.

And if it's just the on-retainer lawyers that CMPB has, just being (to be tactful) overzealous ... well, I think that CMPB should realize that one's employees represent the company. And a company going after work-at-home mothers? ... Well, it's just not the image that a company is really going after, is it?

(Unless your company is, perhaps, enjoying having the Dark Lord, Satan himself instated as CEO. I'm just sayin'.)

So, what do you all think? Would you really be confused in the difference between "milk" (cow's milk, that is) and "breastmilk" (being milk produced by humans ... for nursing small humans)?

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Quick Link ...

Do you love the Twilight series by Stephenie Meyer?

Do you love to mock it?

If you can find humor in the idea, you have to check out this parody of Breaking Dawn.

I totally snickered. Lots.

I sure hope that Pluckie is in Breaking Dawn. I really, really hope he is.

Really, really, really hope he is.

**Update: Oh! Oh! There's a second part to the parody!!!!

I loved the ending for chapter 13, btw.

*Squeeeeee!!!!*

My LOVELIES!!!

If you somehow MISSED your chance to see Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog, you are in WONDEROUS luck!!!!!1!

(If you still have NO IDEA what I'm talking about, see here:)



AAAAAAAAAND!!!! It's viewable online FOR FREE (for a limited time only!!) at Hulu.com!

What's kinda cooler is that you have the option at Hulu to watch one of the three acts at a time OR the whole frakkin' amazement in one glorious shot!!

(How many exclamation points CAN I use in this post? Who knows?)

But, yeah. I'm excited. I almost wish that I didn't have to take the kidlets to storytime. But, I know that I can watch it repeatedly (for a limited time only!) on my computer.

Sleep? Who needs sleep?? I've got Dr. Horrible and Captain Hammer competing for my undivided attention.

So, my dears, go watch it. Report back. Who is your favorite character? Which song did you adore the absolute most of all? Can you possibly wait to own it on DVD? (Cynthia, I know that you can't. And I know that I can't.)

But, here is your chance if you missed it the first time. DO NOT miss it again!
(but if you do, I'll still love you. And, once I get the DVD, we can have a little Joss-festival -- Dr. Horrible and Firefly and Serenity. And we can quote and sing along and eat popcorn and everything. And paint toenails (if you're into that. I know I am).

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Word.

Okay, so I now have a new favorite site for killing WAAAAAAY too much time.

But it's so neat. Wordle.net takes a selection of text, the text from a website, or a user on de.licio.us's tags and turns them into an attractive little "world cloud."

Here's an example:



It's from a George Elliot poem about marriage. I did do a little tweaking. The size of the words in the cloud directly corresponds to how many times that word is used in the text given. So, to exaggerate certain words, you can repeat them.

And to keep certain words or phrases together, you can use a tilda (~) -- That's how I got the phrases "joined together," "be one," and "each other" to be so closely placed together. (Seriously, just go fiddle around with it. If you type two words with a tilde in the middle, instead of a space, it'll keep them together.)

And you can print them out, which is cool. You can also save them as PDF files (since you can't save a Java applet as an image ... I don't know why. I'm not a Computer Science major. Though I do have friends and a brother-in-law that are ... so if I REALLY want the run-down of WHY I can't save it as an image, I can get it. For now, I'll just accept it. I don't have to like it, though.)

And there are quite a few fonts to choose from. My favorite is "Loved by the King." It's just pretty.

** Update: Oh, and if you are copying the HTML they give you to post your world clouds somewhere, take out all the spaces. If you don't, the code doesn't work. Gosh, it's a good thing that I've picked up some HTML-speak as I've been on the internet. Comes in pretty handy. Too bad that I'm not fluent in it. Then I'd REALLY be able to spice up this blog, eh?

Dramatic Prairie Dog, Meet Your Match

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Things overheard in our home ...

(Never say that I don't listen to my loyal readers! So as you have voted, so let it be!)


Early in the morning-
Bucket: WAKE OUT!!
(We're working on "up" ... but "out" works too, if you think about it.)

FRWUCK!! <-- Bruise's cry whenever he sees a vehicle and it's not a car. Or a "Frwacker." (That'd be a TRACTOR.)

I still laugh whenever I order Bucket to tell me how I smell.
Most times it's, "Peeee Ewwww! *Barfing sound* You yucky, Mommy."

Bruise will sometimes declare that he's a girl. (I guess to fit in when Daddy's not home? ... However, when asked directly, he'll admit to being a boy.)

Some things that you never thought that you'd say ... and then you had kids ...:
"Stop playing with your PEN!S!!!!!!"
"Honestly, now. What will it take to get you to go poopy in the potty?"
"Princesses do NOT play with their nipples! ... Well, not unless they're trying to induce labor maybe. AND THEN, they're all grown up, you hear me?!?"

And you really should hear Bucket retell the story of Jonah:
"Jonah 'fraid to go on mission. He run 'way to boat. Big fish swallow him three days. Then fish spit him out *barfing sound*."

(Really, though, you should SEE her do it. It's most excellent.)

Lately, Bruise will come running up to me and declare "Big kiss!" and give me a nice squeeze and a kiss. It's very cute.

Another thing, after church the other day, Bucket came home talking about Nursery (the church class for the 18-month-olds through 3-year-olds). I caught her later, standing on their slide, looking toward the television set (for once, turned OFF), chattering away. I only caught PARTS of her little monologue ... and, oh, my kingdom for a video camera.
She chattered something about "sorry" and "Jesus" and maybe about shows and Jonah ... but, oh, it was darling. ... And then she caught me watching her. Oops.

Yup, I have cute children.

And Bruise is naming his colors off lots better now. For a while, I was worried that he might be colorblind (I mean, my dad is. And so was HIS dad ...). Thankfully, it looks like I'm just a terrible worrywart. But I can handle that.

Vote, vote, vote .. like a baby stoat!

(Hey, if CuteOverload can make this demand, why can't I? I'm cute!)

But, as you can see, I have a poll going on in my sidebar. If you have ANY requests for what I should write about ... Well, let me know!

(Yes, I am confessing that I am not always the most flush or inspired when I FINALLY site down to blog. And I'm also letting you know that I do have your interests in mind. So be very, very flattered.)

And if there's something you want me to blog about that I haven't put up as an option, you should TOTALLY comment or email me and let me know. (And if you don't want recognition as the instigator/inspiration of that future post, let me know. You can be anonymous to the masses of my eager readers (there's like, what ... seven of you? ^_^ But I love and adore each and every one of you, you know.))

But, really, there's not a whole lot that I won't talk about (you long-time readers and RL friends know what I'm talking about). -- What won't I blog about? Well, things that are going to hurt others [I have taken/ammended a couple posts that I wrote while VERY upset, for the record.] and things that Michael specifically asks me not to write about. I think that sums it up.

So, bring on the suggestions. What are you dying to know/hear about/have me blog about/whatever?

Friday, July 25, 2008

Irritating ...

I spent over two frakkin' HOURS trying to do a favicon (which I USED to have a LONG time ago ... so I know it can be done and that I'm really not too stupid to do it) and I've FAILED.

And I'm about to cry I'm so damn frustrated. (And, yes, I did just say "damn" and I'll say it again, too. I'm so irritated.)

Stupid Blogger. Stupid favicon. Stupid HTML. Stupid my brain.

Ugh.

MORE VIDEOS!

Okay, here are the rest:

From my Ty-Bro:
Space: the Infinite Frontier (SNL Skit)
Isn't it nice he totally panders to my crushes on Will Ferell and Jeff Goldblum? That's what friends are for, right?

Here are some awesome little surreal videos









And, because I like fonts and really, really strange humor, this is right up my alley as well:
Font Conference (via College Humor)

Hope that you enjoy the veritable smorgasboard of links that I gave you today!
Now I should go finish a couple library books, take a shower, fold a buttload of laundry, finish dishes, and be an attentive mother to my children.

Fabulous Linkfest of Wonder and Majesty ... Or something like that. I really don't know a clever title. Is this trying too hard?

SO, my dear, dear lovely ones (and, YES, you can be lovely even though you are a masculine-man-type. It's about personaility, my friend.), while my children are ENCHANTED with "The Jungle Book" with its fascinating rhythms and all that, I have some time to blog. (Time which I could be using to, I don't know ... SHOWER or do the frakkin' DISHES or folding laundry .. but which I will sluff off on all that just to share all sorts of things with you. Because I've been sitting on a few things for FAR. TOO. LONG.

Far-too-long-opening-paragraph-that-blathers-on aside, I have links! For you! That you might like! (And some of you have probably already seen ... of you haven't passed them onto me yourselves!)

Let's start ... before I devour my dear little girl who's all porked that her brother had the AUDACITY to sit in the one chair that she wanted. And refuses to sit in the identical chair RIGHT. NEXT. TO. IT. *sigh*


So, where to start??
Let's start with the Muppets. Because Muppets are fun. And anyone who doesn't like the Muppets is a sad, sad person who doesn't have a heart. And who wouldn't know fun if it came and kicked him/her in the face. (No offense, though.)
Here and here are links telling the histories of 20 of our favorite Muppets. (Courtesy of mental_floss)

Something to mull over: Is this the way to temper rising gas prices? It seems to make sense. What do you all think?

(nabbed from Don't Try This At Home.)

Would you survive? Here's a quiz about your chances of survival in various animal attacks.
Here's my chances:


Brought To You By Adult Toy Parties



A rather ingenious Chess Set: from Neatorama

New genius alert! Seriously, Mohammed Bah Abba is changing some lives with this rather simple, yet totally ingenious way of refrigerating without electricity. Totally awesome.



I love the complete absurdity here.

Another fun video -


This was just silly. Which reminds me. I need to see Cloverfield.
Groverfield.

Who REALLY should have won the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize.

When one-upmanship is made of awesome - Ed Begley Jr. vs. Bill Nye, Science Guy.

Kawaii!!! An Alphabet of Baby Animals!!

The best cover of SexyBack I've come across: Diagnosis Wenckebach


Such an awesome library-art-organization idea.

And I'll throw the other videos into another entry. This one's wicked-long.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Something Stupid

One of my regrets:

Not getting a clipping of the newspaper when my kidlets were born.

I've looked on the local newspaper's archive (the paper of the town they were born in. Not the town we live in now. I'm smart enough to do that.), and I haven't found it there, either.

I was stuck in the hospital for a few days after they were born ... so I didn't even think about it until months later.

It's silly that I'm this ... not-quite-upset ... BOTHERED (that's the word!) by this. I know it's silly.

But that's the way it is.

Oh well.

Let's hope that this is my biggest regret of their childhood. If we can keep it to this, I'll be doing well.

Now to stop ignoring my darlings and FEED them a FRIGGIN' SNACK!! (Emphasis theirs, based on persistence.)

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Another Picture Post?!?!?

I will warn you tender, squeamish types that there will be some thumb pictures in here.
But they'll be at the very end. And I'll warn you before I foist them upon you.

But first, check out these kidlets.


I mean, really, how can you not want to nom-nom-nom on them (just a little). They're like sweet, little honey-dipped angels.
(Until they start in with the whining and bickering. But these moments of pure, unadulterated saccharine are totally worth it. -- Like when they run through the house holding hands. Or when Bucket comes up, grabs your arm and announces, "Mommy, we too friends." Yes, feel free to covet that experience. I'd covet myself, if I were someone else. ^_^)

Last Thursday, we went to a baseball game. We only stayed for two innings (It was getting time for the kidlets to be in bed. And, honestly, I had the results show of SYTYCD to watch.), but seeing a game in person? I think I could manage that in the future.



This is my favorite picture that I took of Bucket.
So what if it's a little unfocused.
She's still darling.


Here's Bruise, working on the hot dog.
(Bucket, Grandma, Michael and I had burgers.)
Since we were here for a thing for Michael's work, we got free food.
(The burgers were excellent. The baked beans ... could have been better. However, the potato salad? Pretty tasty. And I don't really care for potato salad.)

Bruise enjoyed his soda.
However, the real reason for the thumbs-up ... *lol*
Since his little accident, I've been taking lots of pictures.
Now, whenever I take his picture, he'll show me his thumb.
It turned out well in this picture, though, no?


The kidlets enjoyed watching the game.
And hanging over the partition.
And stealing our noses, sunglasses, and Michael's hat.

And yet another reason I keep them around.
They're just too cute.
And they're more photogenic than I am.
(Seriously, what's with my Mona Lisa-esque smile?)
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Beware! The graphic thumb-pictures below!!! You have been warned!

Here is the picture of Bruise's thumb when we took him to the doctor's when I noticed the blistering and all.

It's not very pretty.

And it's really blurry because I took it on my phone. And I had to be quick. Dr. R kept working on it while I attempted to snap a pic for Michael. (And Bucket circled the table, trying to pat Bruise's leg. "No cry, Bruise. No cry. It okay. It okay, Bruise.")

Now here it is that all the scabbing has come off. It's still red and a little swollen. It looks like there's some skin missing around his nail bed. That should be better in a week or four, I think. And, if not, it's not like boys care about their nails so much. ^_^

Posted by Picasa
Here's a thumb side-by-side comparison. You can see how swollen it is and how much pinker it is. And how much I really need to trim that right thumbnail.

He seems to be fine, though. It doesn't seem to bother him. And he's very quick to point out (as I go through and edit pictures), "Bruise owie!! Bruise thumb owie!!"

(Total aside: Bruise and Bucket are in the bathroom. And I hear her sing, "La la la. [Bucket] World." <-- to the tune of "Elmo's World." Love it.)

I think that within about a month, we'll be past the Bruise-Thumb Saga. And, except for our poor checkbook, will be able to almost forget it ever happened.

Maybe.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Memories ... of the way we were ....

Just a meme going around the bloggosphere ...

1. As a comment to this post, leave one memory that you and I have together.

2. Next, repost these instructions on your blog and see how many people leave a memory about you. If you leave a memory, I'll assume you're playing the game and I'll come to your blog and leave a memory for you!

Meme from Bri-Bri!

So, since I'm still zonked from my last week ... here's a meme. I'm blogging ... but it's not up to my usual caliber, I know. Just bear with me. ^_^

1. WERE YOU NAMED AFTER ANYONE? Not at all. My mom picked out my name because it was pretty and for its meaning. (According to the book she read, it is Irish for "Blessed little one.")

2. WHEN WAS THE LAST TIME YOU CRIED? Thursday.

3. DO YOU LIKE YOUR HANDWRITING? Not at present. I like it better when I've practiced it. Lately, I've been using the computer a lot. And it shows.

4. WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE LUNCH MEAT? Turkey. closely followed by Black Forest or Honey Ham.

5. DO YOU HAVE KIDS? Oh, THAT's what these little people that demand stuff are!!!

6. IF YOU WERE ANOTHER PERSON WOULD YOU BE FRIENDS WITH YOU? I'd hope so. I like being adored. (<-- Name the movie that I just quoted!)

7. DO YOU USE SARCASM A LOT? Me?!? No!!!!! (See question #5)

8. DO YOU STILL HAVE YOUR TONSILS? Yup, I do.

9. WOULD YOU BUNGEE JUMP? I would kinda want to ... but I'm so weird that I'm worried that I'd wet myself. And then I wouldn't have packed extra clothes. And I don't want to walk around in pee-pee clothes. That'd be gross.

10. WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE CEREAL? Golden Grahams and Lucky Charms.

11. DO YOU UNTIE YOUR SHOES WHEN YOU TAKE THEM OFF? Sometimes.

12. DO YOU THINK YOU ARE STRONG? I'm stronger than I appear ... Which surprises most people.

13. WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE ICE CREAM? Hagen Daas' Irish Creme or Strawberry Cheesecake ... or coffee-flavored ice cream ... Safeway has a delightful "Dublin mudslide" that's coffee AND Irish creme. Their bananas foster flavored one is really good, too.
(Yes, I'm a rebel when it comes to ice cream. The Lord still loves me. I know.)

14. WHAT IS THE FIRST THING YOU NOTICE ABOUT PEOPLE? If they look happy.

15. RED OR PINK? I'd go for pink. I can wear just about any pink.

16. WHAT IS THE LEAST FAVORITE THING ABOUT YOURSELF? My insecurity. And my obliviousness.

17. WHO DO YOU MISS THE MOST? My high-school friends (especially my comedy troupe friends)... It's killing me that I've lost contact with my prom "date" Japanese exchange student friend. (She was amazing. And we went to prom together because we couldn't get any boys to take us. And, totally, she was the cutest one there. ^_^ No offense to anyone else. You'd agree, too, though.)

18. DO YOU WANT EVERYONE TO SEND THIS BACK TO YOU? Meh. Only if you WANT to. I'd like to hear/read your replies ... but if you don't want to, I'm not going to get my panties in a twist about it.

19. WHAT COLOR SHOES ARE YOU WEARING? Invisible ones. But I do have on pink socks.

20. WHAT WAS THE LAST THING YOU ATE? Otter Pops.

21. WHAT ARE YOU LISTENING TO RIGHT NOW? "A Bug's Life"(Bucket's watching it) and Bruise humming.

22. IF YOU WHERE A CRAYON, WHAT COLOR WOULD YOU BE? I'd be the magical opalescent crayon that Crayola NEEDS to make. And if I can't be that ... um ... pink, I gues.s

23. FAVORITE SMELLS? Real carnations (not the floral-shop ones. Those don't smell. REAL carnations smell spicy and amazing), Michael's deodorant (it's like a water-smell-type-thing), baking bread (or cookies or cakes), sun-ripened raspberries, rain, the ocean air (not the dead fish-smell, per se, but that salt tang? Perfect.), my kidlets' warm head-smells, my cats' fur, vanilla, buttercream, nutmeg, cinnamon, light musks, fruits, chocolate, ...
Yeah, it appears that I'm rather at home in the kitchen when baking, no?

24. WHO WAS THE LAST PERSON YOU TALKED TO ON THE PHONE? Answering the phone for Michael. Before that, my sis-in-law A ... and for REAL talking, it was my Bri-Bri.

25. DO YOU LIKE THE PERSON WHO SENT THIS TO YOU? Well, duh! She's the little sister I never had!

26. FAVORITE SPORTS TO WATCH? I don't watch much. But I could watch competitive dancing, ice skating, and the Olympics (if I got the channel they're on).

27. Hair Color? My real hair color. Which is a red-tinged dark blonde. Almost toes the line of light brown.

28. EYE COLOR? This blue-ish, grey-ish, green-ish color. I just call it grey. But on my license, it's blue.

29: (Bri's mom deleted it so she made one up!) IF YOU HAD NO
RESPONSIBILITIES TODAY AND NO TO-DO LIST, WHAT WOULD YOU DO?: I agree with Ms. Bri-Bri, a nap sounds divine. ... And if I had money, I'd go to a spa.

30. FAVORITE FOOD? Mostly comfort-food-type things: Custard, mashed potatoes and turkey gravy, stuffing, broccoli-rice-cheese casserole, Eggs Benedict, strawberries and cream, truffles, beef stroganoff, ...

31. SCARY MOVIES OR HAPPY ENDINGS? Happy endings are nice. Can we combine the two? ^_^

33. WHAT COLOR SHIRT ARE YOU WEARING? It's a nightgown. Yellow with pink and lavender flowers.

34. SUMMER OR WINTER? Both can be nice. I like our mild Oregon winters. Because I like to wear sweaters.

35. HUGS OR KISSES? Depends from whom. I am comfortable with hugs from most people. Kisses are reserved for family. ^_^ Or VERY close friends.

36. FAVORITE DESSERT? Cheesecake. With cherries, please. Strawberry shortcake is also good (I loves me some pound cake). ... Or just about anything with chocolate.

37. MOST LIKELY TO RESPOND? Does it really matter?

38. LEAST LIKELY TO RESPOND? Again, does it REALLY matter?

39. WHAT BOOK ARE YOU READING NOW? I just started the Warriors series ("Into the Wild") ... but I also will be reading the 5th in the manga series of Good Witch of the West. And "Specials," "Extras," and "Peeps." And some others. I'm hoping to read a couple books today.

40. WHAT IS ON YOUR MOUSE PAD? Light blue background and little multicolored butterflies (My Daria one is so old it was falling apart. And that Bucket puked on it once and it had to go in the wash didn't help.)

41. WHAT DID YOU WATCH ON TV LAST NIGHT? We watched a DVD - "Becoming Jane." It was okay.

42. FAVORITE SOUND? My kids laughing

43. ROLLING STONES OR BEATLES? I like them both.

44. WHAT IS THE FARTHEST YOU HAVE BEEN FROM HOME? Mississippi

45. DO YOU HAVE A SPECIAL TALENT? I read well and fast. I can make people laugh.

46. WHERE WERE YOU BORN? Portland, Oregon

47. WHOSE ANSWERS ARE YOU LOOKING FORWARD TO GETTING BACK? Anyone who wants to do this's answers! (I mean, really. What am I supposed to answer?)

Sunday, July 20, 2008

HURRY!!!!!

Tonight, Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog will vanish from free-streaming onto iTunes.

And you should totally buy it on iTunes (or on DVD when it comes out. Because Joss Whedon TOTALLY promised that it would. And when it does, I'm SO, SO, SO buying it and making everyone I know watch it. Because it's really funny/good.)

But, seriously! Go to Dr. Horrible's site! Watch the three episodes! Hum along! Laugh!
(Or if it's not July 20th anymore, download them off of iTunes - three episodes, $1.99 each. That's six bucks for a 45-minute musical of Joss-osity!!)

But, really, people ... Michael and I totally loved this. Totally. Michael gives it four stars. I give it four-and-three-quarters. (That last quarter will be given when the rest of the Firefly cast comes out for a song-and-dance number.)

And I want the soundtrack to this, dang it. So bad.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

The Saga of Bruise's Thumb

Once upon a time, there was a dear little boy. A curious little boy.

One Sunday afternoon, he was playing in the kitchen while his daddy was going to make Jell-O. He pulled at the cupboard handles, even though he knew that it had been forbidden. Oh! This time, the latch gave and the cupboard door opened. What wonders could be contained behind this door?

Oooh, lots of cooking things -- a blender, a rice maker, a griddle, waffle-makers, a bread machine, a Kitchen Aid mixer (HEAVY!!) ... and SHINY! A food processor blade!

"Hmm," he said to himself, "This could be fun." And he reached out to grab it, like Sleeping Beauty reaching for that blasted spindle. However, instead of a deep slumber for a century, this resulted in BLOOD. LOTS OF BLOOD. Enough that his daddy grabbed the screaming little boy and raced him to the bathroom, trailing his mommy and sister in their wake.

The family ended up calling the doctor's office and making a visit into the next town, so the doctor could assess the thumb. It was covered in a pressure wrap. They called it a "Cookie Monster thumb." The children got stickers at the doctor's and popsicles at home.

After a few changes of the dressing, this little boy's thumb swelled up and turned some funny colors. His mommy and Mutti took him back to the doctor's (AGAIN) for advice and treatment. They ended up changing around how the thumb was wrapped ... the little boy had a "Rocket thumb," which was kind of fun ... and it felt much better, being able to get some air.

His thumb, though, continued to blister a bit and eventually, in a few days, his family took off the dressings entirely, allowing his thumb to be in the open air. His thumb-skin dried out and felt like old shoe leather. The once-swollen and blistered skin sloughed off as they used Bactarin and Aquaphor on the poor, dry skin. His mommy tried not to freak out or give herself an aneurysm thinking about it.

His mommy was also a blogger. A blogger who let her readers (all, what, SIX of you? Thank you, my dears. I love you eternally. You're better than bacon. And bacon is gooooooooood.) vote on whether or not they wanted to be faced with the pictures of the little boy's thumb.

There were two votes of "Bring on the gore!!!!!" and four votes for "Let's see what Llanna's stressing about". No one voted for her to hold back. So, here we are:

The Cut - July 5 ... six days after it happened



ROCKET THUMB!!




About a week later - July 11
You can see how much it swelled and blistered.

The other side -- really red.
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Above - July 13
The blistering is going down.
Still looks like Hell.




July 14 - Still REALLY swollen.
The skin, being out in the air, is really tough and dry.



Today (July 17)
Still swollen, the dried skin is sloughing off.
(Actually, most of the dry skin sloughed off shortly after this picture.)



You can see all the pink new skin through the bits of old, used-to-be-blistered skin.
You can also see on the top right side of Bruise's thumb where he lost the flap.
It should heal well. I'm waiting for the last of the dead skin to come off, the areas where the skin split (front knuckle) to heal, and for the swelling to completely subside.
I may have a while to wait.


But, yeah, that's really most of what's gone on with his thumb thus far. I think that the area where he was cut will heal up pretty well (partly due to all the swelling). He's using this thumb more and more. (Hopefully, he'll be able to hold his fork and all pretty soon.

While I was preparing the pictures for this post, he'd come by the computer and point and say, "Bruise ouchie! Rocket thumb! Ouchie. Bruise thumb hurt."
(It amused my dad, with whom I was chatting on the phone.)

But, phew! I'm so glad to finally get the pictures up and this post done. I started it around 9 this morning ... then, with phone calls and storytime and everything ... yeah. It's taken me a while.

So, tell me, does it look better or worse than you imagined?

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Returned

I got back safely. Took a shower. Took a nap. Cooked dinner. Went to Costco.

I'm headed to bed (still tired) and to snuggle with my husband.

More later.

Tschuss, meine Schatzen.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Little Things. Real Fast.

1. Bruise said a prayer last night. Well, almost a full one. I was proud.

2. His thumb is getting better. It's out in the open air. Dry skin. Looks like hell. I call it "Frankenthumb." Seriously, all it needs is some stitches placed randomly and you'd agree.

3. Bucket is being very cute. When she's not smacking around (and KICKING) her brother. As she tells us all that Bruise is hurt and we need to be nice to him. ^_^

4. Five minutes until I leave for Camp. Michael's home with a migraine, so I'm going to close up, kiss him, kiss the kidlets, wish Mom C luck, grab my lunch and purse and waterbottle ... pick up P, and meet for carpooling.

See you Wednesday! I'll tally up the votes about the pictures then. Thursday will be the soonest you should really expect a post. But I'll see if I can't get myself together Wednesday before SYTYCD.

I'll miss you all!! (And especially my dear computer ... no email for TWO. WHOLE. DAYS. How will I survive?!?!?!??)

Take care!
Me

Saturday, July 12, 2008

I'm a bit of a mess ...

So, I'm going to pack my stuff up for Girls' Camp today. It shouldn't be too bad. I should buy some mosquito repellent ... and maybe a new flashlight (Funnily enough, for power outages, we tend to be real candle-people. I can barely FIND our flashlights. And when I do, the batteries are all weak. But I KNOW where multiple candles and matches are at a moment's notice. Why is that? -- It COULD be Gothic-Romantic Llanna ... there's just something so Jane Eyre about a flickering candle in my little brass holder.)

BESIDES that, I keep hugging my children and telling them that "I'm gonna miss you SOOO much." They seem okay with everything, though. They know that Grandma is coming up (Sunday afternoon) and that they'll probably see their cousins some more. So, they should be okay. Michael's here for them ... Grandma raised five great kids of her own ... I'm just a terrible worrywart. And I totally own up to it.

(But it would help if Bruise's thumb was all better. Or, at least, didn't need to still be wrapped.)

Speaking of Bruise's thumb, four more days to vote on if I show pictures. So far the overwhelming majority is pro-gore. So if you think you might faint/throw up/whatever if you see picture of his thumb's metamorphosis, speak up now or forever hold your cheese.

Most of the blisters from his reaction have popped, so it's looking better. And since it's had some airflow with the "rocket thumb," the color looks MUCH better, too.


THAT up there is a "rocket thumb." Bruise even can say "rocket thumb." And he's very proud of his rocket thumb. As in, he cries when we take it off to rewrap his hand.

Yeah, it's not the best picture of him. As you can tell from the past photos, he's way cuter than that picture would lead you to believe.

Oh, when Bruise's thumb had the huge reaction to ... latex, the bandage, whatever ... and he cried/screamed that whole trip to the next town, Bucket started to sing. Mostly to drown out Bruise, I think.

"Bruise, it okay." She warbled. "Bruise, no cry. Bruise, BE QUIET. BRUISE, NO CRY!!!! NO MORE CRY. QUIET NOW!! NO!! CRY!! BRUISE!!!!1!"

Yup, that's my girl.


And that's my girl, pouting.



And here are my little pyromaniacs, on Independence Day.



(Hey, be nice about the last picture. I'm not a professional photographer. I so should have gotten T2 to show me the ropes. Or read some photo blogs more. ^_^)

But, yeah. Right now I'm a bit moody because I'm worried. And I'm all down on myself a good deal about Bruise's thumb, because it KILLS me when he's in pain. And he was in pain yesterday (One of those nasty blisters from his thumb's reaction burst). Poor little guy.

At least I'm not even going to be gone for much more than 48 hours. (thank goodness. I mean, I adore everyone that I'm going with ... but I'll be abandoning my BAYBEEEES! MAH PRESHHHHHHUS BAYYYYBEEEEES!!!)

Yes, there is an internal conflict. (Heck, with me, it's like an eternal conflict.)

Oh, hey, I've got to go. Bruise ran over to me with my flip-flops. "Mommy, shoes." He tells me.
"Hey, buddy. But Mommy needs to get dressed first!"
"Okay. Mommy, shoes."

(Yeah, he's a little OCD about shoes. It's cute.)

But I'd better go before there's a mutiny.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Overheard: Bucket edition

I have to say that there are things that my daughter says that just really make me laugh.

This morning, I asked her (as she was petting Diana-cat) which cat she liked better: Ginger or Diana.

She thought for a minute and said, "Mutti-cat."
(Mutti is my mom.)

She used to get so, SO excited as the Disney movies started.
Bucket would point and exclaim, "Temple!! Temple!!!!1!"
(Now that she's so grown up, she still gets excited ... but she says "castle," instead.)

She's still learning words ... right now she uses "too" instead of "very" or "really."

Examples:
"I too hungry."
"Mommy, you too pretty."
"Bruise too beautiful."
"My shoes be too dirty." <--This one makes sense, but really, her shoes are not all that dirty.

I would think of more, but right now I'm trying to keep and eye on four kids (my nieces are over while their mom and baby brother runs an errand) ... and I'm trying to do conflict control. I already had to take a nearly-deflated helium balloon and put it into time out because a certain son of mine was not sharing. Which made the four-year-old cry because she wanted to play with it and he took it away and now the world is over!!!! ... Except now she's playing with their toy kitchen. After sending all the other kids away. Repeatedly. (As I sat back and tried to coach, "Instead of saying 'Get away!' maybe you could say, 'Please step back.' That might be a kinder way to ask your sister and cousins to move.")

Yup, that's the literary vignette for you. I'm here at the computer, typing away while keeping an eye on these little livewires. Oy.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Post 261 - With bonus "Crazy Dream Chronicles"-goodness!

I had a good last few days with Mom up ... not counting the stress of yesterday.

Mom came up Monday. Before she came up, I took the kids to the library so I could pick up my holds (2/3 of which were still missing. Turns out they were accidentally shelved with the interlibrary loan holds. Oops. But I still went home with only 1/3 of my holds.)

Tuesday, we went to town again to get my holds (which were there, since my Sally-librarian is amazing and found them for me). Bruise cried/screamed all the way there, while Mom sat in the car with the kids while I jetted into and out of the library, while we went shopping (groceries), and all the way home. And them cried some more. All while messing with his right hand (the one with the thumb that got all cut).
Michael and I went to mutual to help out/answer questions about YW camp. Then we laminated the bookmarks for the girls.

Bruise finally slept, but kept messing with his bandage, even in his sleep. Wednesday morning, I unwrapped it (even though it had been on less than 24 hours) ... Oh, my poor little boy. His knuckle was PURPLE and SWOLLEN and cracking.

So we got an appointment and went to the doctor's. Where we found out that he's got a case of dermatitis. Basically, his skin is reacting to SOMETHING. Doctor R tried a new way of wrapping it so that there's more airflow. Bruise, once the wrap was on, was much happier ... and we went to storytime and a playdate at a park. Later, Mom and I took the kidlets to Target where they got wallets (Princesses for Bucket, Lighting McQueen for Bruise McGimpyThumb), I got a pair of capris (Yay! Now I have two pairs of short/capris that fit!), and Bucket cleaned up with four pairs of shorts and three shirts -- well, one's a bodysuit, but still. I also picked up some syrups to use with the shaved ice maker that we got at Dianne's white elephant gift exchange. (Best. Thing. Ever.)

Today, we went back to the doctor's. Bruise's thumb is even more swollen/blistered. But it's not purple. And the cut looks MUCH better ... Maybe just in comparison.
Should I post pictures? What do you all think? They're kind of graphic. Especially the blurry one I got today on my cell phone. But if you really want to see, I could either email you or post them here.

I guess that I'll let you fill out a poll. If you want pictures sent to you, you can just email me. My email is "firstname""lastname" AT gmail.com
And if I've emailed you before, you probably have it. If you don't have it ... well, comment me with it. And tell me to not publish your comment. You can trust me. I figure that you wouldn't want the spambots after you. ^_^

I have a YW Camp meeting in two hours. I have about ten books that I'd love to FINISH before camp. But that's not going to happen. Oh well. But I have gotten through about five or so books this week. Score for me.

I also had the strangest dream. I dreamt that I was this mix of Bella from the Twilight series but with the personality strengths of Veronica Mars (See what you do to me, Jenny?? I blame this on you. Not!). And this government agent-guy wanted information about my dad (More like Mr. Mars than Bella's dad). I was running away and stupidly (of course) ran upstairs of some old building/dormitory and had to lead out into a tree and climb/jump down. I was doing remarkably well ... and also screaming for Edward.

And I prefer Jacob, really. He's just more ... genuine.

But, really, y'all. What is UP with this dream? I was totally capable (Veronica Mars) but still hoping to be saved from my own incompetence (not-so-Veronica Mars).

But I suppose it's better than the OTHER dream that I remember this week. The one where I'm skipping college classes (which I didn't do) to hang out with a friend who's going to be leaving ... and I've skipped so many classes that I can't remember my schedule, so I don't know which class I'm supposed to go to or where it even would be. And I'm going to have wasted an entire term's tuition and I'm going to be served a heaping plate o' FAIL and no one will like me and I'll never get a pony!!!!!!

Okay, so the pony part is not in the dream. But the angst and lost feeling totally IS.

But, to sum up this week that I've neglected you:

-Bruise's thumb is ... getting better. At the cost of what we might save for his college education. (Start working on those scholarship NOW, boy.)

- Bucket and Bruise got new swimming suits. Bucket opted for the Disney Princesses (like her new wallet). Bruise got Pixar Cars (like HIS new wallet).

-I had fun with my mom.

-I had crazy dreams when I wasn't hanging out with my mom, reading books, or freaking out because ZOMG!!Lookit Bruise's THUMB!!! Is it my fault? Did I wrap it too tightly? Have I made it so that he's going to have his dear thumb amputated? Did I do something wrong?!?
(Answer: No. It's reacting to the bandage and the adhesive. It got too hydrated and his skin freaked the chicken out. You're not a bad mom. This time. It's not your fault. And he should heal fine. Just give it a little while. Even though right now, his thumb, in one part, is as thick as a bratwurst. He's really looking fine. And that little flap? Might actually have the right amount of bloodflow to reattach and heal beautifully. We're going to be okay. Just don't think about all the co-pays adding up. Ugh.)

-My mom did the dishes, like a bazillion times. And bought me a pair of capris. Because she rocks.

- I made my mom laugh until she cried. And gave her a great prank idea. Because I'm evil. (Watch out, stepdad. She's got a great idea.)

-I reached my limit of feeling helpless - Yesterday, while holding my dear, little Bruise, who was crying and crying and had a slightly swollen thumb that blistered, I cried, too.

Yeah, that's about it. Oh, and between trips to the library and trips to the doctor and a hella-annoying detour in our town, I've put over 100 miles on the van THIS WEEK. (I usually put like 40, maybe.) *sigh*

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

What's shakin', Bacon?

No, there's not really ANYTHING about bacon in this post. BUT I really have no clever titles to insert. So, yeah.

But, my mom's up visiting! Yay! The kidlets are having a grand old time.

Bucket went poo in the potty (Yeh, the header of this blog is correct, there is crap involved). She got a cupcake, like I promised. One with purple frosting. She was very happy. I just hope that we can make this a regular occurrence.
(And it's fitting that she went poo first. Bruise was the first to really go potty.)

Bruise's thumb ... is healing. Slowly. We rewrapped it Saturday. Since it's been wrapped for days and days (like, about a week), it's all white and a little pruney. I was a little worried ... but it doesn't smell like anything bad (just smells like the bandages). We need to wrap it again today. After another three days, he'll be able to just wear band-aids.

Besides that, I'm trying to get through books and books and books so that I don't get any overdue notices while I'm at camp. I'm doing pretty well so far. Yay! That and I'm trying to actually DO all the things that I'll need to get done for camp. Phew!

So, I need to run the dishwasher, fold some laundry, make some phone calls, hang out with my young friend A (who just got her permit yesterday! Woot!!) ... and get ahold of the building librarian so that the bookmarks that I've printed out for camp will be completely done.

That and with the incredible success of Bucket showing off her mad pooping skillz for her Mutti, I'm thinking that this week will be our "let's say bye-bye to diapers week."

Let's hope it works.

And, at the same time, it makes me a little sad. My babies don't ask to nurse anymore ... they'll be out of diapers pretty soon ... they're little PEOPLE, not baby-babies. But their conversations are lots better.

Like when I was talking to Bri on the phone yesterday (10 days until she's back and will give me a CUTE haircut!!!), and I was laughing so, SO hard. I declared that I was about to cry (because I was laughing so hard) and Bucket RUNS over and pats my arm and says, "It okay. It okay, Calm down, Mommy. 1 ... 2 ... 3 ... Better. Good. No cry, Mommy."

Really, is that NOT one of the cutest things in the entirety of the whole universe?

(I did assure her that I was okay. And thanked her for her concern. Amid giggles, of course.)

And Bruise, he's getting to be a bit of a talker now. Still doesn't always listen as well as I'd like (neither does Bucket, at times. Comes with the toddler territory, right?). He still mispronounces "truck." Really, I assure you that I do NOT teach my son to talk like he is starring in some 'R'-rated movie, if you know what I mean. And I think you do. :P

Okay, I've got to run and get a shower.

Saturday, July 05, 2008

I. Am. A. Slug.

Do I feel like a good wife? A good mom? A good person?

Nah, not so much.

What have I done today? I let Michael get up and set up a show for the children. I put on some sweats. I closed a couple windows. I played a few games of Sudoku.

What has Michael done? Folded some laundry, vacuumed, kept the kids from whining too much (as I am pretty much out of patience ... and I can't take any crying today. Found that out as I worked to re-bandage Bruise's thumb. It doesn't look "good" or pretty. But it smells fine (not necrotic or anything). And he really wasn't crying so much about his thumb as much as because he lost his cool, Cookie-Monster blue thumb wrap. Today it's yellow with bees on it.) ...

I made Ramen noodles for the kidlets. I still need a shower. I looked for a new template for the blog. This one I've had ... I've just had it for way too long. And I'm ... I'm just ... ugh.

I think that sums it up. I'm just "ugh."

Bear with my whining, okay? I'm surrounded by it most days, so it's inevitable that I'll start doing it myself.

I keep sleeping wrong on my shoulder, so it's all sore. I'm just not cool. I am just very moody. Is it my allergies and hormones all ganging up against me?

I really don't have a whole lot to say right now. I think I'm going to grab my book and go take a bath. Then maybe I'll be all cool-Llanna again. I'll be able to be around my babies without feeling like a hooser-mom. I'll be up for doing dishes and folding laundry. I can clean and organize my computer desk. I won't be constantly questioning WHY-THE-CHICKEN my children never seem to listen to a gosh darn dang word that comes out o my friggin', frakkin' MOUTH.

Oh, and only like ONE picture that I took of the fireworks last night MIGHT have turned out decently. Two, if you're very liberal on how you use the word "decent."

Here I go, escaping again. Pay no attention to the present self-loathing behind the monitor. "Walk on by, preacher man. Walk on by."

(I must be feeling better. Look. Witness. I've quoted only one of the best series ever.)

And now to bathe my ennui away.

Ciao, y'all. I'll blog again when I'm not feeling like a complete hooser.

Note for the future: If your children have been messing with your computer desk and you can't type in the address bar to check your email ... make sure to check and see if a key (such as, say, the ALT-key) is stuck. You really don't have to restart the computer and fret about how your presssssssssssssshussssssssssssss lifeline to the world may have been completely screwed.
Not that I'd know or be able to relate to ANYTHING like that. Of course not. *shifty eyes*

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Spinning my wheels ...

I'm to the point where I feel like I may be sleepwalking. That is, when I'm not yelling.

Bruise's thumb is healing ... not as well as I'd like (What I'd most like would be for it to never have happened in the first place. But you know what they say ['They' being Jayne on "Firefly"], "If wishes were horses, we'd all be eating steak."). That little flap? It's a goner. The blood vessels were too well-severed. So, my son may have a little gimp-thumb-pad for a little while. Good thing he's so cute. Maybe nobody will notice.

Bucket was very well-behaved while we were at the doctor's (to have the thumb-of-dooooooooooooom!!!) assessed and rewrapped. She read (i.e., looked at) a book for a little, got me a tissue to wipe up Bruise's drool and snot when I asked her to, and didn't scream and cry (mostly because Bruise was crying ... and she came up to the exam table where he was sitting and entreated him, "No cry, Bruise. It 'kay." Yes, yet another reason that I DO love my children ... even when they are driving me UP. A. FRIGGIN'. WALL.).

But with Bruise being a little more ... whiney than usual ... I just feel like I'm rather tapped out.

The last couple of nights, he's had trouble going to sleep. There's really nothing that I can really do. But, I'm his mom. I've got to at least give it a try. So I'll try and soothe him with murmured words, pet his hair, rub his tummy (<-- Dude, it sounds like I think he's a DOG or something. Next on "The Animal-NO!-Child Whisperer") ... but after so much of him crying, crying, crying and me being totally and completely helpless ... Yeah, I'm rather exhausted.

And I'm about set up for having the missionaries come over for dinner. No, we're not eating THEM (thought I hear they're good with gravy :P). I'm making a BBQ chicken pizza. The crust is done (and made my kitchen smell so nice and yeasty. I like the smell of yeast, what's up with me?), the chicken is cooked and cut up, the BBQ sauce is at the ready, the cheese is pre-shredded. All I'll have to do is put all the stuff on the crust, stick it in the oven, and serve. Well, and cut it up. And vacuum the dining room floor. And set the table.

I'm tired again.

I got caught up with the dishes. I'm still Waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay behind on the laundry.

I just told my son that if his sister kicks him again, he should bite her toes.

Yup, I'm sure that's a Dr. Phil-approved method of conflict resolution.

I should make something for dessert. Or serve some salad with the pizza. I should do something. But I'm just wiped out at the moment. (So tired I almost spelled it "whiped out," but I think I'll leave that to Devo.)

The nice thing is that Michael'll have tomorrow and Friday off. (He's taking tomorrow off ... just because he can, really. And because he's been working hard. I'm looking forward to having him around.)

Bucket has refused to nap. And I'm an enabler today. So she is going through her Pixar collection. Bruise, however, slept on the carpet in the living room. For over two hours. He seems a lot happier. Bucket did catch a few winks in the van on the way to the doctor's office. I think she's also gotten over her doctor-phobia. She was very chipper and calm. Thanks be.

Well, I need to put together a pizza, unload the dishwasher, and vacuum the carpet.

Give me strength. And some energy.

And maybe a banana creme pie.

Counting ...

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