May 2011

Is that a giant TV or are you just happy to see me?

File under: book | champagne problems | greta

Some things in no particular order:

I did indeed start editing the book. People who said editing is harder than writing weren't joking around. And here I thought they were just kissing up to me. So far it's slow going and I'm thinking the end result is going to be mediocre at best, but I will finish—or die trying.

I also came up with an idea for book number 2. It's still very intangible and far fetched, but I have an idea! That's sort of a big deal for me.

This past Friday we went to the artists' reception for the show Greta's picture is in. It was really fun to see Greta's photo in person as well as the entire series. Each photo was better than the next. And it was so fun to see the kids there and get to see their personalities and see how excited they were. The photographer has posted some of the images here. I love them all. And I sneaked a picture of my favorite little model in front of her photo.

We have butterflies! Greta got a butterfly habitat for her birthday from her friend Sophie, and the next day we sent away for the butterflies in waiting. We got our larvae and we've been enjoying their metamorphosis over the last couple weeks. On Monday the first two butterflies appeared, and today the third and final butterfly made its appearance. It has been really, really cool, but they're really, really freaky to me. I mean, this is a face only a mother could love, no?

I do thoroughly enjoy these little critters, though.

Did I mention they're creepy, though?

Butterfly

Even more exciting than the butterflies, if you like technology and don't fear change, is that we got a new TV. We are notorious for our ridiculously dumb outdated TV. The thing is, I like our old cruddy TV. But Pat has been trying to talk me into buying a new TV for years, and he was so stupidly excited when we got our tax return and found the perfect TV. Anyway, I was reluctant but I couldn't squelch Pat's dreams for a modern TV anymore even though Greta cried when she heard the news (we do fear change). The TV arrived today, and it is so big. It came while Pat was at work and I IM'd him complaining about how big it is. Here is the transcript of our conversation:

Fran: it's like half the length of the living room

Pat it'll be perfect

Pat: i studied the viewing distance charts

Pat: i used scientifically proven methods

Fran: okay okay

We got it all set up, and Pat and I watched for five minutes. Here is the transcript from this conversation:

Fran: it's giving me a headache

Pat: me too

Pat: we'll get used to it

Fran: [groan] champagne problems

Fran

Well, well, well

File under: NaNoWriMo | rit | weekend update

What do we have here? Two blog entries in one week. I think I deserve a cookie.

As I mentioned, we were looking forward to going to Imagine RIT this weekend, and it did not disappoint. Pat was able to take off from his exhibiting duties for part of the day, and we got to have lunch with him and walk around for a bit with someone who knows the campus very well. I am notoriously good at getting lost and have a horrible sense of direction, so even though I am at RIT multiple days of the week and really should know my way around by now, I still find myself bumbling around, even when I have a map in my hand. Luckily for Greta and me, there are enough fun things to do in every square foot of that festival, my crap navigation skills are moot.

Highlights include sharing a lunch table with some RIT old timers and hearing some great RIT history, listening to some nerdy (I use this adjective in a completely affectionate manner) college boys singing an a cappella version of "Fat Bottomed Girls," watching a quidditch game, professing my love for the RIT publication Reporter to an exhibitor for the publication and getting a free Reporter t-shirt, watching Pat sort of diss YNN's Getaway Guy, getting a photo with YNN's Dan Eaton, and seeing Greta's maturity and good sense when we went to the area where there were a bunch of bounce house things and when G saw the lines, she said, "Those lines are too long. Let's go do something else." I love seeing glimpses of sensibility in my child.

An honorable mention goes to Greta's heavy petting session with some blue cotton candy.

In case you don't believe we met thee Dan Eaton, here's your proof.

As we were walking up to the YNN table, Mike O'Brien (commonly known as the Getaway Guy) gave us a big hello, and Pat didn't recognize him and said, "We're here to see Dan." Haa. Maybe you had to be there.

Here's a picture from the quidditch game. Although they didn't fly, they did use brooms.

Overall, it was a great day and lived up to even my lofty expectations.

It was such a nice day with Greta it felt like that was my Mother's Day, but then we had special Mother's Day plans as well. We went to see my parents and went out for linner, or dunch  if you prefer, at Elderberry Pond. It was Greta's first sort of long meal out at a restaurant sans crayons. She had some ants in her pants, but she didn't try to set the place on fire or anything like that, so she gets points for that.

Ooh, it's getting late and I will hopefully have another update tomorrow, but I will leave it at this for now and just mention that after some friendly nudging by Pat Reed and Taryn, I feel like it is finally time to get back to the book project and start phase one of editing, which means I have to start getting up early again. So I bid you adieu. Night!

Fran

Feeling writerly (not really)

File under: birthday | rit | weekend update

Oh, hello. I can't help but notice that my formal favorite outlet has gone down the crapper. Sorry about that. 2011 has been unpleasantly busy and just, well, unpleasant. The last thing I want to do at night, when I finish work around 11 PM or so, is collect my thoughts and write a blog. Also, the internal narrator I've had for the last 8 years or so has left the building. (Seriously, usually it's like an episode of Parker Lewis Can't Lose in my head.) So even on the rare occasion I've had time to write, I've had nothing to say. So there's that. But the last two weeks have finally calmed down, and while my internal narrator is still at large, I think I have enough things going on I can piece something together.
 
Birthday parties galore. We had two really fun parties for Greta, and there are some fantastic pictures that I really need to post somewhere to share. For Greta's friend party, her favor bags contained whoopee cushions, fake mustaches, and nerd glasses. Seeing the nerdy, mustachioed kids having fun was the highlight of my life. So cute. What is not so cute is that we have six kid birthday activities in the month of May. Ridiculous. The party we went to this past Sunday lasted entirely too long and there was a clown—a very rude clown. He bounced back and forth between hitting on me and insulting me. He insulted everyone at the party, I think. He called certain kids stupid and ugly. He told inappropriate jokes about religion, politics, mothers-in-law, and death...not to mention boogers and farts (the latter of which are usually hilarious), and his delivery was atrocious. Also, he had the worst case of dry mouth I have ever seen. He was literally frothing at the mouth. It was so...uncomfortable. Lesson, kids? Don't hire a clown under any circumstances...unless it's a nice, normal, good clown. (Is that an oxymoron?)
 
Greta had her first semi-legitimate modeling gig! When I say semi-legitimate, I don't mean like in college when you'd get $50 and someone would photograph your feet for three hours (not that I did that). I mean like in the sense that it was just for fun and no money was exchanged. Anyway, a friend of a friend was looking for kiddo models, and Greta had the opportunity to pose for her. The photographer, Hannah Betts, was great, and we can't wait to see the finished product at the opening of the show later this month. She posted a sneak peak of the show on her blog, which happens to be a photograph of Greta! I am SO excited. Does Greta make a great mad face or what? I love it.
 
This past weekend Pat helped make history by playing in the world's largest dodgeball game at RIT. Greta and I got to cheer from the stands, and it was quite a sight to be seen (and quite a smell to be smelled) with more than 2,000 playing for about two hours. It was quite impressive. There is a really cool video of it here. I love watching the time-lapse video of how the sides moved in waves. It was even cooler in person.
 
Okay, I guess I'll leave it at one more thing for tonight. This Saturday is Imagine RIT, aka my favorite festival in Rochester. Pat is going to be an exhibitor again this year, and he's been working like crazy to prepare. No exaggeration, he came home at 1:30 AM two nights ago and I woke up, looked at the clock, and said, "You're home early." And the sad thing is I was being sincere. The good news is I'm sure it's going to be a great exhibit and also, for Pat's hard work he, Greta, and I were all given VIP status for the festival. We get high-roller parking and get to wear fancy badges with brains on them and get to get free high-roller food from Mario's in some high-roller tent. High rollers! Woot! Woot! It's a really fun event, whether you're a high roller or not, so you should come. (I had a blast slumming it as a commoner the last three years.)
 
All right, that's it for now. I will try to upload some recent pictures soon and I've got a few more stories in my pocket. I'm sure all two readers left are thrilled.
 
Honk if you...like honking!
 
Fran