Monthly Archives: November 2005

Oh, right. Christmas.

On the afternoon of the last day of November, we zipped out to the store to buy Advent calendars for the kids. We brought them along to choose their own – I don’t think I’ll be up for engineering surprises this year – and the stores were nearly sold out, which is what I get for waiting till the last minute. No, I haven’t even started thinking about shopping yet.

This is going to be a rough season. Over and above the fact that Thing1’s birthday is on the 15th, which complicates things every year, I just don’t feel like I can pull it all together this time. The cookies and the parties and the cards and the fact that nobody in the family knows what to get the kids or my husband so they all ask me – it’s always overwhelming, but this year I still haven’t caught up on the month of everything I missed while I was Home in October, and I’m still waiting for the grief of Mom’s death to catch up with me. While I wait, I stare into space a lot. Oh no, I think we’re out of wrapping paper too.

Christmas music might help me get into the spirit of thing, and maybe even remember that Christmas is looming long enough to get some stuff done. But finding and ordering a CD that doesn’t suck sounds like too much work right now.


Okay, ganked this list from Kelly, and the word gank from her friend Mario, whom I do not actually know. But he taught me a new word, so he can be my friend.

A: Area Code You Are In Right Now: 8081
B: Birthday: October 21st
C: Current Crush: John Cusack
D: Favorite Drink: Coffee
E: Eating Currently: gummi bears, stolen confiscated from my sons
F: Favorite Food: mashed potatoes with lots of butter and gravy
G: Who Do You Go To For Advice: My next-door neighbor
H: Happy or Sad: yes
I: I think: too slowly
J: Job: several
K: Any Kids: two sons
L: I Love: my family
M: Favorite Movie: Princess Bride. Yes, I am a dweeb.
N: Your Phone Number: not tellin’.
P: Favorite Perfume or Cologne: something lilac-y would be nice.
Q: A Little Quirk About Yourself: I tell the truth when people ask me how I am.
R: Last Road Trip: Andalucía, about three weeks ago. El woohoo!
S: Tell Us One Secret: I don’t have any secrets
T: Favorite TV Show: haven’t seen anything other than kiddie shows for four years. I hate them all.
U: Color of your Underwear: usually black
V: Last Time You Were in Vegas: umm, New Year’s, 1992. 1993?
W: Wishful Thinking: the only kind I do
X: X-Rays Taken This Year: None
Y: Your Favorite Year of your Life: almost always the one I’m in, except for this year. This one was not so great.
Z: Zodiac Sign: Libra

Ignatz and therapy

So this morning I went to see Fr. W, the only psychotherapist-for-kids here in OurTown. This was the last of the 8 um, Probestunde…like trial sessions. She had four with Ignatz, and two each with me and DrBob, and will now write to the insurance company, describe the problem as she sees it and say that she thinks Ignatz will benefit from therapy. If they approve it (i.e. agree to pay for it), we can start seeing her regularly – Ignatz once a week, the parents probably once a month or so. Continue reading

about Niklas’s sweater…

Thing2 cut a hole in it. With scissors. At kindergarten, last Wednesday. He says it was unintentional, and his teacher confirms that there did not appear to be any hostility behind it. Apparently, he just…did it. Which is why, she says, she recommends that he not start school next September, but wait a year. Apparently he has some, uh, maturing to do. Which is a bit confusing because he was so cheerful and friendly and socially… uh, ept (opposite of inept? Okay, okay, I know it’s “apt”, I was just playing) when he started kindergarten two years ago. He seems to be going backward.

So now we have to call Niklas’s mom and figure out how to replace the sweater. I never realized how mortifying parenting is. Oh, especially since remember the Thanksgiving thing? Where Thing2 was not very nice to the hosts’ little boy? Well, the little boy’s mom is a database administrator, and therefore a potential asset in my imminent job search. Or was a potential asset, until she met my son and I left my purse at her house.

By the way, if you can stand waiting for it to load, this is pretty funny. Unless you hate cats, of course.

but I digress…

So I’ve been thinking that photo up there deserves an explanation – I mean, are those birth-control glasses, or what? What happened to the rest of my face? Why am I even wearing glasses, since those of you who know me know that I’ve had 20/20 vision all my life. And it’s a funny story, or maybe it isn’t – the whole situation struck us as deeply and hilariously weird at the time, but it’s probably one of those “Ya had to be there” things. And of course it was long enough ago (a whole month, wow!) that I’ve forgotten some of the details. I did take notes, in that little notebook I mentioned in a previous entry, but I don’t have that notebook to hand, because of another thing that happened. Which is that I left my purse at someone’s house. We, except for Thing1 who went to see his godfather instead, went to a sort of Americans Gathering For Thanksgiving thing in Munich, on Saturday. Which was fun, yadda yadda yadda, oh except that Thing2 was a surly-butt – the hosts have a 4-year-old son, a charming little boy who was very happy to have someone his age to play with, except that Thing2 wouldn’t play. Which not only embarrassed me, because he should be nice to other people (even though he has nobody to model this behavior for him, since his parents are surly-butts as well – oh no, remind me to tell you about Niklas’s sweater sometime), but also annoyed me because he wanted to crawl all over me while I was trying to talk to grown-ups. Gad, is it time for a new paragraph yet?

Sure, what the hell. Anyway, where was I? Oh yes, reasonably fun and not terribly eventful, except that, as the punch line of a comedy of errors, I left my purse there. With the notebook in it. And my cel phone, and my PDA which has little alarms to help me remember to do stuff, and I devoutly hope no alarms are set on it right now, because Robert won’t be able to pick up my purse until Tuesday. Also hope nobody calls me. Because the family who hosted the Thanksgiving Thing were very nice, and my son has already been rude to their son, and I have already demonstrated my complete scatterbrainedness, and on top of everything else, I would really hate to annoy them in absentia with random beepy gadget noises.

So that’s why the story of the glasses will have to wait. Because this entry is already long enough. Maybe I’ll remember when I’ve got my purse back, Tuesday evening, or maybe the story will be supplanted by whatever happens tomorrow morning, at my appointment with Thing1’s shrink. Which I sincerely hope I remember to go to, because it’s at 8.30 am, and I don’t have my PDA to remind me.

been remiss

You know, given that I am Tom Waits, it’s actually kind of embarrassing that I haven’t bought any of my albums since Black Rider. Okay, the label should be sending them to me free of charge, and I shall send them a very stern email, but in the meantime I should pick up a few, and this requires some thought. Because there’s a sort of Tom Waits continuum, with, say, the mellow bluesy Semi-Suite at one, and the clanky, shrieky, Earth-Died-Screaming at ten. And if I recall correctly, Black Rider was about a twelve, a little bit past my level of dissonance-tolerance. And every time I look into buying another Tom Waits CD, I wonder where it is on the scale. Somebody should set up a Listmania! list. Oh look, somebody already has. Welcome to Stream-of-consciousness blogging, folks. Anyway. The point was: asking the general public for input! Yes! Because I take advice from strangers! Okay, not really. But still, here’s a chance to put some pictures up, and we all love pictures.

So there’s my collection so far, in order from bluesy to clanky. Those of you familiar with the canon, please tell me where you think the others fall in that spectrum. And I’ll go buy the two or three that suit my mood the next time I visit



Turns out, it’s not just me. Ask pretty much anyone from the Left Coast what they miss most, living in Munich, and they all say the same thing: Mexican Food!

So that’s good, I’m not alone. Misery loves company. Of course, I’d swap all my companions in culinary deprivation for a shredded beef and bean burrito, but that’s okay. I’m fairly sure they’d do the same for me.