Sunday, September 30, 2007

Less Will.i.am, more M.C. Hammer

Please hammer, don't hurt 'em!


Tuesday, September 25, 2007

We Heart The Kaiser Chiefs!

Not that I expect anyone to have missed me, but I haven't had much chance to post lately. Due to the seasonality of my work, I've been working full-time this month. After this week, I will (hopefully!) drop back to my usual three days per week. I've missed having my days at home with the kids, but I am extremely thankful for my job and the flexibility my company gives me.

I will have a lot of blogging to catch up on in October!

In the meantime, you should really check out the song "Ruby" by the Kaiser Chiefs (http://www.myspace.com/kaiserchiefs) if you don't already know it. If you know my husband (and to some extent me), you can guess that until we fall on desperate Screaming-Baby times, we're not going to listen to children's music in the car. This may be selfishness on our part, but our children haven't yet come to the realization that KidSongs and Baby Einstein CDs will even work in the car. "Ruby" has been Will's favorite song for some time, although it was recently unseated by "Down The Road I Go" by Dierks Bentley. (Will's tastes are pretty eclectic.) We've gotten a lot of laughs listening to Will sing "Ruby" on roadtrips. Here is the chorus:

Ruby, Ruby, Ruby
Ah-ah, Ah-ah, Ah-ahhhhh
Do you, do you, do you,
Ah-ah, Ah-ah, Ah-ahhhhh
Know what you're doin', doin' to me
Ah-ah, Ah-ah, Ah-ahhhhh
Ruby, Ruby, Ruby
Ah-ah, Ah-ah, Ah-ahhhhh

Now, out of the blue, Sophie began singing the chorus this week. All we have to say is "Ruby, Ruby, Ruby..." and she takes over with the "Ahs!"

British Progressive Punk is fun for the whole family!

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Where's the Daddy Duckling?

Will and I are reading Dawdle Duckling before bed.

Will asks, "Where's the Daddy Duckling?"

I think this is a very good question. Maybe it's true that in duck society, the fathers don't play a part in rearing their young. But if you're going to give the ducks other human traits (like the ability to speak, dawdle and play), perhaps a Daddy should be written into the story. It seems to me there are lots of kids' books where Daddy has little or no presence. It's concerning.

Will chooses not to delve into sociological theory. He has a ready answer.

"Maybe the Daddy Duckling's at Home Depot. He's at the Home Depot buying outlets for the new houses."

So there.

Friday, September 14, 2007

Happy Birthday, Little Sof-a-Rof!

I think Sophie had a wonderful birthday. We were lucky to have Papa and Grandmom Morris extend their visit so they could share the day with us. This took considerable effort on the part of Papa, as unforeseen events kept calling him back to Georgia.

Grandmom suggested that we should have pizza for dinner, since that's Sophie's current favorite food. Here she attacks it with her usual good-natured vigor.
She was a little less enthusiastic about the cake. It interested her, but she didn't seem to realize it was meant to be consumed. I don't think her sweet tooth is in yet (which would stand to reason since she only has two in total).
The party hat makes a great trumpet!
Soph talks on her new cell phone. "Hey dare! Hey dare!"
Sophie poses by her new clothes from Grandpa Jim.
Soph hugs one of her new twin dollies. We're not sure of their names yet, but we think they are "Anna" and "Dede".
We're not quite up to THAT birthday yet.
Since the weather was beautiful, we were able to meet Daddy in the park for lunch and swing. Other than swinging, Soph's favorite park activity is filling up a cup with recycled-tire-mulch, dumping it out, and then filling up the cup again.
Will pushes Sophie in the swing. This is extra-exciting for everyone involved, as we never know what might happen next.
"Birthdays are the coolest! I love you all!" - Sophie

My Rock Star Hair


I've been going to SalonFX for a while, but I still haven't found the right stylist. I really didn't like my last haircut, and in spite of sweet Katie's efforts at "at-home" improvement, it was still time for a change. So today I made my appointment, and instead of a known stylist, I chose the always-exciting Curtain #3.

Behind Curtain #3 was a very talented young lady named Nan. To the left you see Nan. The black-and-white picture does not quite do her justice. It camoflauges the fact that her extensions (which are only on the sides and not the back of her head) are a vibrant orange. The rest of her hair is short and deep red, except for her blond bangs. She looks quite trendy and is very sweet.

And she's opinionated. I've always wanted an opinionated stylist - someone who takes one look at you and says, "Here's what I want to do to your hair..." Nan had a plan!

Also, she was trained at an Aveda salon. I don't care much for Aveda products (I am cheap and they are not, after all!), but this means she gives little neck massages when you first sit down and when she is washing your hair. I'm all for neck massages. If you'll give me a brief neck massage, I will ignore outward signs that you are way punk and I am not. I will suspend all judgment and allow you to do whatever you like with my hair.

So in spite of the fact that I had gone in only for a haircut, when Nan started espousing the wonders of the new color process they'd just come out with, I was putty in her hands. "This will enrich and deepen your color, and increase your shine SO MUCH!" Nan explained. Who doesn't like enrichment and shine? How could I refuse? AND she offered me a discount since I hadn't planned on color. If her neck massage hadn't already left me completely pliable, the discount would've certainly done it.

So I let Nan, a punk chick I had never met before, color my hair at first sight. No pictures, no test strands. By the time we were finished, she'd decided (and I of course concurred) to highlight my hair for free as well, although I think this was actually in lieu of the discount.

Nan did a fantastic job cutting my hair. She gave me the cut I'd been wanting, but everyone else was afraid to give me. I love that.

Now for the catch: My hair is now several varying shades of intense, fire-engine red. She tried to explain that the lights were just very intense in SalonFX, and almost had me convinced my hair was normal and not punk-rock, maybe even a color that appears in nature.

Then I got back to my office. When everyone I ran into had the same reaction, I began to suspect that I was in trouble. That reaction was a dropped jaw, an intake of breath and an impressed "Wow!" Tanya thought she was seeing a new side of my personality, since I was so conservative. I tried to explain that this had nothing to do with my personality and everything to do with Nan's.

The silver lining is that this is not permanent color, thank goodness. And I'd actually recommend Nan, especially if you're looking for a change. I'll go back to her, but next time I will reel her in a little more. And maybe ask for a picture of the color she proposes in advance.

This picture is after several days and four or five vigorous shampoos (the lather continues to be orange each time). The shade has faded to a more acceptable color. If I'd had any hope I'd be able to fade the color this fast, I would've been sure to take a picture on Day 1, so you could all have a good laugh at my expense.

PS Andy calls this my Mary Winkler haircut. I'm not exactly sure how to take that.

Monday, September 10, 2007

A Chip Off The Old (Construction) Block

For a while now, Will's been referring to everything orange as the "Home Depot ". For example, "I'm wearing my Home Depot shirt!"

Now he's expanded on terminology, and everything blue is Lowe's. So I might hear, "I'm wearing my Home Depot shirt and my Lowe's shorts!"

In his time with Grandma and Papa Morris, he picked up a closely related phrase.
Andy is concerned that his obsession with home improvement is abnormal (as if he would be able to judge this!), but every time I hear Will say, "Home Depot. You can do it; we can help." I can't help but giggle.

Here Will is wearing a shirt with Home Depot stripes!

Thursday, September 6, 2007

Porterhouse, please!



I just want to warn any perspective suitors to start saving their money now. Don't bank on her ordering a $6.95 dinner salad - you'd be wiser to plan on the $25 steak. Sophie may look delicate, but in terms of diet, she has more in common with a tiger than a bird or a bunny. The girl is a born carnivore!

I was surprised, as Will was and still is a bit slow to acquire a taste for meat. We had to start with quasi-meats like hot dogs and Krystal burgers and work our way up to steak and chicken. So after Sophie's 9-month appointment, I didn't really factor her in to our next trip to Chic-Fil-A. But after two of my nuggets (torn into small pieces of course) vanished and she still looked eager, I realized she was a force to be reckoned with!

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

Southlake Update (Day 20)

It was day 12 (8/27) when these pictures were taken... Note the new siding above the porch.



(I should really crop my finger out of this picture, but I'm too lazy.)


Things are progressing well at Southlake. Of the list of items that were "up for this week" in my last post, everything has been done except for some of the electrical upgrades. The kitchen cabinets are on order, the sheetrock has been removed where necessary, the walls have been cleaned, the trees have been trimmed, the floor has been leveled and repaired, and the new bath and laundry room have been framed in.

The central air is also in, although apparently the technicians assumed the hardwood was not salvageable and carelessly cut several vent holes in the wrong places. This left holes where Andy will have to lace in new hardwood. This is a pain and a little nerve-wracking because the stain on new wood never quite matches aged wood. The only silver lining is that there was already one place where the hardwood is so distressed it has to be replaced, so Andy had already purchased some hardwood.

Further, the plumbing for the new bath and laundry is in and the new shower and replacement bathtub are installed. The guys spent Saturday replacing all four exterior doors, no small feat in a remodel as door replacements never seem to go smoothly.

Monday was spent working on the electrical and installing tilebacker in the kitchen and bathrooms.

Next steps: Complete electrical upgrades, patch hardwood, and sheetrock interior where needed.

After much consideration and debate we have (I think) decided to paint the exterior of the house, as we've done on several brick houses in the past. Painting brick is a very controversial decision, as in theory it takes something maintenance-free and makes occasional maintenance necessary. In our limited experience, though, the paint has a long life and the curb appeal and fresh look it gives the house make it very worthwhile. In the case of the Southlake house, almost every house in the vicinity has the exact same brick, and that influenced our decision as well. We think the paint should make the house stand out in a positive way and have a positive impact on the neighborhood.