blue dinosaur cake

Before becoming extinct

I had nothing to do with this piece of art, aside from eating a slice.

It’s now a tradition for Wendy to ask her daughter what kind of cake she would like for her birthday. Last year was the princess castle. This year? Blue dinosaur. I think it had a technical dinosaur name, but they’ve changed all these since I was a kid so I can’t remember. If it isn’t T Rex, brontosaurus, stegosaurus, or triceratops, I have no idea what you’re talking about.

Whatever variety, it was delicious.

Looking mighty forward to next year.

I lifted these bits from Wendy to share:

The cake pattern was based on these 3-D Dragon/Dinosaur Cake Instructions. (There’s also a YouTube video of how to make a dinosaur cake if you’re so inclined.)

Wendy mentions that the sparkly sugars covered up any ooopses and gave it a little extra zing. She used Wilton Sparkling Sugars if you’re interested.

Some behind the scenes photos by Bonnie and Wendy:

Current music: R.E.M. “Sing For The Submarine”

She almost always comes in town for the holidays

The lucky cats by the front door at Sizzling Wok

And though we talk a big game about going downtown and getting something fancy, we end up back at the chinese joint from our youth.

She’s a little exhausted from trying to squeeze in visits to friends and family, but after a few rounds and some conversation, she’s re-energized and we are 19 again.

Figuring out how to make the ourselves and the world better.

Previously, December 2004 (We still order from the menu, avoiding the sneeze guard on the buffet.)

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how chest hair and elbow grease saved Monday

This is what I work with…

I don’t think Mercury really left retrograde until last night.

Maybe right around the time John Stewart summoned Marketa Irglova back onstage to deliver her half of an acceptance speech for original song at the Oscars. [ view clip ]

I’m so rooting for optimism after a week of misunderstandings, lame communication on my part, wires crossed, and general malaise. Don’t get me wrong, there were bright spots, but overall…(insert grumbling)

But today we were a full studio. No snow delays. No cancelled school. Babysitter on tap. Rock.

We started off with the albatrosses—a short list of everything hanging over our collective heads that we must tackle to get to the good stuff.

And then we closed our computers, put the caps on our list-making pens, and hit the press. Cranking out a batch of shirts, wrapping up others with twine, and clearing off counter space along with a bit of our conscience.

We ended early with enough time to do some product photography. Wendy and I prefer when Tom wears the modeling hat, and Tom seems to love running around with his shirt off between wardrobe changes. Today he was especially proud to share newfound growth on his chest.

Maybe there’s some metaphor here about how things can get hairy, but I think it’s really just a reminder to smile and work with what we’re given.

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Brunch Club February 08

Fruit, tofu dog, donut, ketchup

This isn’t actually what was on the menu for brunch club, our early-in-the-day potluck version of dinner club, but it was served to a couple of kids right after everybody left.

Because when you get a bunch of young ones together, the least interesting thing to do is eat. There is only time for running, playing, jumping, and expending every morsel of energy. Hence the post-meal pictured above.

This marked the first time I’ve met my friend Anne and John’s little boy. He’s a handsome handful. And another couple are expecting their third.

S’all good.

We’re getting a handle on keeping dinner club alive with the ever growing guest-list.

PhotosLots of photos of little ones (we adults know what we look like)

Current music: Once (sountrack) – “Fallen from the Sky”

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Never too many thank yous

A snapshot from a gift, a book called The Andy Warhol Show
This piece: “Handle with care—Glass—Thank you” 1962

Christmas Day: I went to visit friends because seeing kids run around a tree is a great way to feel the spirit of the holiday. The little ones were already exhausted from their toys, chasing each other for entertainment. I scarfed a maple scone and watched the blurs.

The whole gang left to see the grandparents a few hours later. “C’mon down.” my friends said. They always have room for more. I wasn’t going to see my mom until later in the afternoon, so I pushed aside the guilt of not bearing any gifts and drove over.

I was welcomed warmly, pointed to the direction of coffee, and invited to sit for gift exchange.

Scratching my head on the inside how it was possible, a pile of wrapped items appeared for me to open.

I had help from the kids—imparting my gift-guessing skills in the process. I explained the logic of touch, shape, tilt and heft. I used big words, and it though it might’ve seemed the small ears weren’t listening, I knew they were.

The gifts were great—more than great.

But I want to note one in particular. The last in the stocking. Palm sized, it made a rattle when shaken. My unwrapping compadre and I were perplexed with no guesses. Their small fingers wrestled eagerly with the tape and paper.

It was a box of paperclips.

I about lost it, but all that came out was a smile.

Always knitting my brows trying to find the perfect gift, I routinely forget—its not about that at all. It’s about a lot of things, I figure, but being together ranks up way up there.

I shall bite my lip if ever I say the magic is gone or the spirit is lost in the season.

I have paperclips to remind me.

Current music: Damien Rice “Delicate”

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weapons

Eddie aims

Birthday party last evening.

What to buy a 9 year old?

With some asking around, I got one response.

“Weapons.”

I can dig that. I was totally into knights and armor and whatnot around that age.

By the time all the wrapping paper was whisked away, there was enough nerf ammo to start a small tactical operation.

I’m just happy to have had a big slice of lasagna.

PhotosA handful of photos from the evening

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The Thanksgiving that was

Before it gets too blurry…

I’ve many things to be thankful for this year. I’m determined to write each thing down, on paper, put a stamp to them, and send ’em out to those responsible.

If I can post every day in November, I can take a few off in December and do that very thing.

But I’m focused on one thing right this second, as I sift through photos from this past holiday. Some shout outs of immediate appreciation to my mom for the slice of time before dinner (and the buttermilk pie), and Kevin and Jodi—preparers of a most memorably delicious Thanksgiving meal.

We just polished off the last of the leftovers, and it is decided, we’re going to need some recipes. But I’m sure we would have a hard time recreating them.

PhotosSome photos from my mom’s house, then food, glorious food

Current music: Efterklang “Illuminant”

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crawling really fast

Too fast to focus

The holidays have unofficially started.

A good dozen friends from high school, their significant others, and kids came together for a pre-thanksgiving dinner tonight. It was a bit of surprise to see folks from Los Angeles, South Carolina, Virginia, and Florida in attendance—though not everyone strayed far from our alma mater.

New Richmond if you’re curious. A small town that only had two stoplights, a Big Boy and a pizza joint when I was growing up. We also had a kick-ass public school system that taught me a thing or two, and forged friendships that stick some thirty years later. (I’ll do the math, that means I’ve known some of these folk since I was five.)

I figure our parents might have thought we were an unusually tight bunch. Though we’re not all pen-pally, there are never too many twists in the grapevine to keep apprised of who is where and up to what (without the bother of Facebook or MySpace.) It’s baffling really, but I’m not one to second-guess this stuff.

Time flies and it’s good to have anchors planted along the path.

PhotosYes, I was annoying with the camera. Didn’t capture everyone, but here’s 40 snapshots from the evening

Current music: James Blackshaw “Transient Life In Twilight”

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Colorforms

I wanna play

I stopped to check on some stuff with Wendy yesterday, and she was deftly juggling her youngest (who is now officially crawling) and oldest (who is a bundle of energy) while the middle one was out for a nap.

It was that antsy part of the afternoon when an activity is good to focus young energy. Wendy broke out a classic Colorforms set and immediately I flashed back to the Smurfs set I had growing up.

This set was basic primary colors and shapes. Anything was possible and man I just wanted to chuck my work duties and just sit there and join in the fun. But I needed to run to the post office and bank, and (insert gigantic to-do list).

A virtual check in later revealed the fruits of their labor—butterfly and mountain range (continue to view).

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