Friday, July 30, 2004

One, Two, Three

1. Bloggity Goodness

Every once in a while I’ll stumble across a blog that is so funny, so real, so well-written, so…much better than mine that I hide my bloggy head in shame. I also post a link to it, because, well, you should be reading it too. Please note the addition of Chez Miscarriage to the blogroll on the right.

2. The Nanny

So, we have this nanny. And it’s weird because, in my book, only upper-middle-class white women in the suburbs have nannys, which brings me to the disturbing realization that I am an upper-middle-class white woman in the suburbs. Well, sort of. But you know, I never thought I was the nanny TYPE. And by that I guess I mean I didn’t realize I was a grownup already, but apparently I am, and apparently I have a lot of kids, and apparently it is too much for me to handle on my own, the kids and the job and the house, because LO AND BEHOLD! The laundry is suddenly getting done and the kitchen counters are clean and the beds are made on a regular basis! Praise Jesus! And furthermore she is very attractive with a nice, luscious figure which allows a certain person I know (well okay, maybe both of us) to engage in all sorts of happy little threesome fantasies to which I say…


But a boy can dream. And yeah, fine, he’s not the only one. Of course when I dream about sex, as I did last night, it was sex with Brian. And only Brian. Apparently I can’t even cheat in my sleep.

3. D

The Big D is back. Seven or so years ago the depression from which I suffered for 10 years magically, mysteriously evaporated in a cloud of pregnancy hormones, never to be heard from again. There were a few little hiccups of sadness and grief, and even the occasional Very Black Day, but none of the soul-sucking, pit-of-darkness, lie-on-the-couch-all-day, wish-you-were-dead depression that used to overcome me. Until recently. I don’t know if it’s having kids that for me kept it mainly at bay, or if it’s the hormones involved in pregnancy and nursing, or what. All I know is, it was gone, and I was glad it was gone, and now it’s back, but not all the time. I can be moving along just fine with my day and then suddenly everything takes a turn for the worse, the gaping black hole of doom opens up before me, and I want only to cease to exist. I’m not even sure what’s happening here, if it’s creeping back, or just making a little cameo, if I’m going to need drugs or just to take more walks in the sunshine. So far it’s manageable, and I’m hoping it will crawl back into its fucking cave and leave me alone so I can get on with this business of living. We’ll see.

Thursday, July 29, 2004

Fresh Air

I don't get political here too often, but the rhetoric of the speechifiers at the DNC including the mother at the kitchen table, the kid who just wants to go to college, the skinny boy with the big American Dream, and, yes, the captain of the boat who risks all to save his fellow soldier (in the middle of a corrupt and wrong-headed war! but we won't really mention that part), all of that crap seriously makes me want to yank my eardrums out with tweezers. I know y'all got all excited about Barack Osama, and maybe I had to be there, but to me it was just another small-town-boy-with-big-dreams America-is-a-land-of-promise speech, bore me to fucking tears, which is why I say...

Hello, Al Sharpton!

If I told you tonight, "Let's leave the FleetCenter, we're in danger," and when you get outside, you ask me, Reverend Al, "What is the danger?" and I say, "It don't matter. We just needed some fresh air," I have misled you and we were misled.

Sure, there was that very cringe-worthy Tawana Brawley period. And yes, there's the Jewish Problem. But THANK GOD we have a speaker with a backbone at this thing who's willing to go on the attack against this corrupt and immoral administration that must be STOPPED, and not just spew a bunch of crap about Promise and Hope and Dreams.

Thanks, Al.

Wednesday, July 28, 2004


New camera alert! Here is Carrie's subtle hint that our dining experience to come might be less than tranquil:

She can't talk yet, but she can still flip us the bird.

We went to the Shady Grove last night for our usual fix of chicken fried steak, mashed potatoes (extra gravy), and a couple of Shady Thangs (vodka, pisco, lime, margarita mix, frozen, yummmm) which last night left me feeling very flushed...I seem to be developing an allergy to alcohol of all things. The girls were even more high strung than usual and insisted on being held and walked around through the entire meal so it was not the relaxing night out we had hoped for. But still, a shady time was had by all.

The boys have gone down to The Valley (Rio Grande, that is) for the entire week. This is the first time they've taken any sort of trip without me and I'm trying my best not to miss them. It's mostly working.

And yes, I've promised pictures of the new house -- which may end up being torn down for a new new house, or may be remodeled, we don't know yet. I'll probably take some pictures this weekend. Meanwhile, I've got this house for sale, so if you know anyone who wants to buy a 4 bedroom in suburban Austin well, let me know already. They can have it for a steal.

Friday, July 23, 2004


Meg over at Mandarin Design Daily posted a link to typogenerator. Fun! You give it letters, symbols, numbers, whatever, and it spits back an image for you:

Sometime, hopefully in the not too distant future, I will actually learn more about building web pages and start having some fun with this one in terms of design and other ideas...I have so MANY ideas, but no time to really learn. For now I'll stick with the template blogger gives me. It's enough of a job to try to come up with words every few days...making it pretty to look at will just have to wait.

In the meantime, though, I'm picking up ideas by reading Mandarin, and I know when I finally get around to designing, Meg's tips will come in very handy...thanks Meg!

In other news, Javi is now putting sentences together, his favorites being, "I want it!" and "I'm MAD." Say a word, and he'll spit it right back at you, whether or not he knows what you're saying. Say, "preamble" and he'll look right at you and give you his best "preamble" on the spot. That's my boy. I think maybe he's cuter right now than he has ever been in his life. This could be his peak.

In other OTHER news...Brian bought a house! There will be pictures soon.

Thursday, July 22, 2004


I'm in a strange house (and how many of my dreams have this as a central theme? It's either strange house, or strange trip). It is some kind of gathering, seemingly of just women and children. Brittney Spears and Jessica Simpson are there, and they are best of buds. I'm walking around and around this house, not really getting anywhere, not really talking to anyone. At one point I have the twins, and then sometime later I don't. I think to myself, off-handedly, "I wonder where the twins are?" But I'm not too concerned. Someone has them. They're probably fine. I keep wandering. I have to go to the bathroom so I find the door, swing it open...

And there is Allison, hanging suspended from the ceiling, the rope is around her neck. another rope is somehow extending from the wall to her wrist. She looks shiny and plastic, like a doll. I glance at the bathtub and see Carrie,underwater and motionless, and a strange yellow color. I am panicking, trying to get Allison free from the rope, wanting also to grab Carrie from the water, I can't do it all, can't save them both, they might both be dead already, and I'm calling for Brian, calling for help, but it's a party out there and no one hears me. And then I wake up.

Monday, July 19, 2004

that blur you see out the window is my life going by

I set the alarm for 4 or 4:30 or 5, thinking I can get up early and maybe catch up on some work, but of course the alarm wakes up the girls and then I'm nursing, and then it's 5:30 and I'm heading for the study and blinking at my computer. I work for a bit but it's not enough to catch up, and then my boys wake up one by one, and the babies too, and it's diapers and breakfast and changes of clothes and get your shoes on and get out the door and strap into your seats and haul ass to day care by 9:30. God fucking forbid we should be later than 9:30 because that's the cut off time and they can actually refuse to take my kids for the day if I'm late. An option I can't afford. So rush to day care, then take Jack to camp, then drive all over town to this doctor's office and the next, picking up tapes, dropping off documents, hoping none of them asks me why I'm one, two, three days behind. Maybe the girls are screaming in the car, or maybe they're at home, screaming (like they are right now as I write this post, carving out my 10 minutes today of writing, letting them scream). Maybe I hear them in the background when Brian calls me up to ask if I'm going to the store, we need diapers, we need half and half. Get back home and it's 10:30, 11:00 and I'm nursing and drinking coffee and worried already (still) about how late it is and how much there is to do. There are bills to be paid and the mortgage company to deal with and a house that's not selling and kids who need checkups and the poor wormy cats who have been forced to stay outside while the await their trip to the vet which is constantly being pushed back, pushed back, not today, I don't have time. And the thank you cards and the laundry and the vacuuming and my God the grocery shopping, the email to be answered. Sometimes there's an afternoon when the girls are both asleep for more than 30 minutes at once, and I work and work while they sleep and sleep, desperately trying to catch up, desperately trying to do a full-time job in the stolen moments of my blurry day and then it's late afternoon and I'm out the door again, picking up the boys, trying to figure out dinner in my head, driving home, refereeing fights in the back seat, my eyelids heavy, shoulders tight. Home at 6:30, feed everyone, nurse the babies, play with the kids, put them to bed, more nursing until before I know it it's after 10 p.m. and I'm looking at one, two, three, four days behind on my work. Maybe, if I'm lucky, the girls are both asleep and I try to carve some working time out of the night, I say to myself "tonight I'll stay up until 1:30 working," but then it's 11:45 and I'm crashing, and then someone wakes up to nurse and I'm taking off my clothes and falling into bed, setting the alarm, thinking...maybe I can do just 5 hours...maybe even 4...and then it's 2 in the morning and I'm nursing someone or other and all I can think is hurry up, hurry up, let me put you back down, let me go back to sleep, more sleep, precious sleep...and then at 4:30 the alarm goes off.

Sunday, July 18, 2004


It's bad enough that I have to worry about my kids snorting heroin or having unprotected sex or voting Republican without having to consider the possibility that some day they may want to DANGLE FROM MEAT HOOKS
A young woman, her feet brushing the surface of the shallow water, dangled from the frame, hooks embedded firmly in her shoulders.

According to a Coast Guard video, she did not seem to mind the hooks.

Lt. Tom Brazil of the Coast Guard told the Key West Citizen newspaper that a young man, who also had hooks embedded in his heavily pierced and tattooed skin, assured him the group was "just enjoying the afternoon."

Those wacky alternative body modification kids.  Jesus.  What ever happened to the good old days of clitoris piercings and tongue splitting?
Oh the hits I'll get from Google now! 

Saturday, July 17, 2004

The Post In Which I Don't Mention My Mother

I'm just recovering from two days in bed with something which can best be described as "right-sided disease."  I had a headache behind my right eye, horrible right hip pain, right-sided sciatica, right foot pain, plus a sore throat and fever, nausea, and an overall feeling of crappiness.  I did manage on Friday morning to take all the boys to school, visit my doctors' offices, go to the post office, and deposit money at the bank, but i had to stop by the side of the road to vomit in the middle of all of that.  I think I slept more in the last 2 days than i've slept in weeks, and the sort of sad thing about it is that I don't even really feel rested.  I've still got the headache behind the eye, especially if I turn my head a certain way.
Oh well.
My brain is currently playing a loop of Any King's Shilling, the Elvis Costello song, I think in some sort of response to watching Cold Mountain the other night, a movie which royally pissed me off.  Maybe I'm too demanding of movies these days, or maybe most movies just really suck ass.  I don't know.  Jude Law is certainly nice to look at, as is Nicole Kidman, but that there just ain't enough.  And that's about all this movie had going for it.  Well that and some good music.  And you know I'm really tired of these fucking Brits/Aussies/Kiwis/South Africans coming over here and playing Americans.  Don't we have enough talent in Hollywood for Christ's sake?  With actual AMERICAN ACCENTS?  But anyway, for a good old Odysseus-style epic tale retold in the modern world of the American South I would more heartily recommend O Brother, Where Art Thou? Which also has some pretty fine music not to mention a whole lot more to offer in terms of visuals and dialogue.   The Coen brothers would just crush Anthony Minghella* in a Celebrity Death Match any day of the week with all four hands tied behind their backs. 
(deleted paragraph about my mother)
So anyway, where was I?  Oh yes, sick, watching movies, not thinking about my mother.  In the middle of posting this it was discovered the Allison has a temperature of 100.5 (and a piercing pain behind her right eyeball, no doubt), so she's been given a hefty dose of Tylenol. 
(not) Speaking of my mother, she just sent us (or rather, the boys, but I rather think it will be better appreciated by the adults) this book, which is incredible.   Just look at these  for a taste.  I'm bringing the book to pozole for show-and-tell.  Which is where we're headed now, so it's off to the shower for me.  I hope your weekends are free of illness and full of good food.
*although I admit to having really liked The Talented Mr. Ripley and to never having seen The English Patient because I read the book and thought the book was amazing and didn't want it ruined by the movie.  And I think that was probably a good call.  And, okay, I saw Truly Madly Deeply and thought it was charming.  But I still say the Coen brothers would kick his ass.  And I guess they would have to resort to ass kicking what with their hands all tied up.

Tuesday, July 13, 2004


Javi's new word is albatross.

We lost our nanny, who was perfect, to her dream job at an ad agency (I know, blech, but she's young). There's another potential nanny lined up, though, so I haven't completely panicked. But I'm close.

The girls are crying, and if they're not crying they're nursing, and occasionally they are napping, but not at the same time. I'm not getting anything resembling sleep, let alone work done. It was supposed to be getting easier but instead it feels like things are slipping into the harder and harder zone. Last night I walked my fingers one step up, two steps back, one step up, two steps back, on the surface of my leg to show Brian pretty much how I'm feeling these days. It all just makes me want to hide under a mound of blankets.

And he says, think of all the good things you have going in your life, and of course he's right, but that doesn't stop me from wanting to punch him. Well, not really punch him. But you know.

I had to write a letter telling my mother, AGAIN, that she is not welcome to move herself to Texas and be a full-time part of my life, and it sucked writing that letter. Again.

I don't just feel like shit, I feel like the shit on the bottom of your shoe, and I'm tired of feeling this way, tired of my own skin and bones and the sight of myself in the mirror, tired, tired, tired.

Thursday, July 08, 2004


I realize that this amazing thing happened to me over four months ago and I now have twin babies, and with that comes a lot of interesting material to write about, but for some reason the whole experience of having twins has not really made it onto this blog, and I can't exactly explain it. Partly I just don't think I can do it justice, and partly of course I am really fucking tired. But surely I can manage to plunk down a few words about Life With Twins before it’s all lost to my notoriously poor memory storage banks.

There are a few things worth mentioning:

1) Instant Celebrity Status. If you have two babies with you at the same time, you are so much more noticed than if you have merely one. You are the rock star of your local Costco. People will cross the street to come see your babies, they will stop serving food to the other customers, they will ooh and aah and coo and caw at your babies, and they will point them out to all the other people around them. “Look! Twins!” My girls are like J. Lo and Ben Affleck right now. Highly, highly desirable.

2) The Questions. What fascinates me most about the whole public twin spectacle is that everyone, EVERYONE, asks the same initial question. Everyone. And that question is…

Are they twins?

Now, bear in mind that these are identical 4-month-old baby twin girls, who are frequently dressed alike, and frequently seen with just me, or with me and Brian. And I ask you, is that not the stupidest question on the planet? And yet it is asked over and over again. There was the one woman who realized it was a stupid question and so tried to come up with another way of putting it, but the best she could manage was…

Are they attached?

There were so many potential smart-ass responses to this totally inane question (my favorite: "Yes, sadly, they are attached at the head. The surgery is scheduled for next year.") that I must admit I was completely struck dumb. The second-most common question would be…

Boy and girl?

Um, no. You see how they’re wearing identical pink dresses? That would be your cultural cue to realize that they are BOTH GIRLS you nimrod. Now get out of my face.

3) They’re Everywhere. Everyone is a twin. Of course, when you think about it, you realize that adult twins aren’t likely to be spending all day every day with their sibling, no matter how close a relationship they’ve got going on. Just like the rest of us, they have lives of their own, their own families, shopping to do (like at Costco for example). Maybe they see their twin sibling more often than some of us see our sisters and brothers, but they’re not walking around in matched sets with little “Twin” signs hanging around their necks, so you’re not aware of it. Until you have twins. Then, you can be sure, they let you know. “I’m a twin.” “My mother’s a twin.” “My sister just had twins.” “My third cousin once removed is a twin and so is her great aunt!” Twins are all around us. Twins are watching us. It's ALL TWINS ALL THE TIME!

That's all I have for now. There is BIG NEWS on the horizon but I'm not wanting to jinx it. Cross your fingers and toes, and I'll let you know next week.

Wednesday, July 07, 2004


Chickendog is gone, spooked by the fireworks, and I am beside myself with anxiety. Please think a good thought for poor chickendog today and hopefully she'll find her way back home.

It's my fault, which makes it even more excruciating.


Back. All in one piece. I received many dog kisses and delivered many belly rubs. She's a little gimpy and seems very tired.

Thursday, July 01, 2004

Where Was I?

Um, sorry.

It's the same old stuff, you know, work piling up and all that. Plus my mom came to visit and it takes all of my energy and creative resources to simply tolerate her presence in my house for 8 days -- there was none left over for writing. 8 days, actually, is a rather short trip by my mother's standards, and for that I was grateful.

Sometimes I look up from whatever it is that I'm doing and realize "I have 5 kids" and I wonder how that happened, but most days are just a blur of nursing and working and food preparation and driving. Everybody's still alive, though, and that's what really matters.

Have a great long weekend, for all of you who get one.