Monday, January 25, 2010


Little girls are so interesting. They have such life in them.

Not that I don't think my little boy has life in him. Fellan has LIFE! in him. Marxo has life. It's a subtle difference.

Fellan had tee ball tryouts this past weekend. Yes, I know, you're asking yourself, "Tee ball tryouts? Isn't he only six?" Yes, you read it correctly. And don't get me started. Luckily, for us, though, we're in the non-competitive league. The other is way worse.

Anyway, he had such a great time. He ran the bases, he "fielded" the ball, he hit the ball, he was in tee ball heaven for an hour and a half during tryouts. He was all boy for that hour and a half and absolutely loved it.

And then he had to come home and play with his little sister - who is such a girl. She likes to play mind games with him and will intentionally disagree with him just to make him mad. Or she'll refuse to play one small part of whatever imaginary thing they're playing and it will send him into a tizzy. She gets great joy from this and I definitely wonder what the future holds for us.

I never considered myself a very girly-girl. I took great pride in it, in fact.

I grew up in the times of Title IX and I remember distinctly singing "Anything you can do, I can do better" whenever I was told by someone that I couldn't do something due to my gender. (which was usually my dad - but in a completely joking way and I always knew that he meant the exact opposite.)

Marxo, on the other hand, is growing up in what seems to be a girly-girl time. Princesses are back in full-swing. She only wears pink and purple and she absolutely loves to dress up in her best and most beautiful clothing. It makes me worried sometimes at how girly she's becoming because I know that girls can be absolutely horrible to each other.

But, I'm trying to embrace (for the time being) this girly life that she has in her. She loves to write her name in "cursive" which actually just means adding curly-q's to all the parts of the letters in her name.

She also loves putting on makeup and having me paint her fingernails for her. Grammy gave her some eyeshadow for Christmas and she applies it with abandon (if given the chance) until she looks like she's been in a 12-round boxing match and ended up the loser.

Since she's only five years old, she didn't have any kind of makeup case in which to keep the eyeshadow, so I found something suitably small (I didn't want to encourage the purchase of anything additional!) that came with some lip gloss for her. All day yesterday, she applied and re-applied lip gloss and then talked with a fixed smile and tried not to make her "lipstick" come off. I don't even wear lipstick, so I'm not sure where she learned this behavior! Some things just seem to be innate.

She has also decided recently to change her name. It happened right before Christmas when she started calling herself "Jana" but when she wrote her new name, she would write it "Jena". And now all the little girls at the preschool have chosen pseudonyms. Brittany, Jessica, and Caroline are a few of the names that have been chosen.

Marxo decided however, to re-change her name to "Sakya". Which she pronounces "sah-kee-ya". I'm not sure where she came up with that name, but it's a pretty name, even if I do want to break out into song every time I say it. (Just try saying it and see if you don't start singin, "Zaccheus was a wee little man and a wee little man was he...")

Yesterday she asked me if I was skinny. I told her, "I guess comparitively speaking, yes, I'm skinny. Why do you ask?"

"Because you look skinny to me."

Well, I don't care what she calls herself. That little girl is a keeper.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Engineers are...

so amazingly oblivious to other people sometimes it's humorous.

I came in to work for a little while on Friday and also took advantage of being here by working out at the Fitness Center. I usually ride the stationary bike machine thing because the elliptical trainers are always all being used, but on Friday, I figured I'd have the place to myself.

I was wrong. There were a couple of other "regulars" there - one on a stationary bike and another came out to run on the treadmill after I had started on the elliptical machine.

I had only turned one of the four TV's on before I started working out and the treadmills are in the row in front of the elliptical machines. I'm sure you can guess which treadmill the other guy chose to run on. Yes, the one that obscured my view of the TV.

At first, I couldn't believe someone could be that dense. But then I remembered that I work with a bunch of socially inept engineers. It made perfect sense.

P.S. The Fitness Center is pretty much back to just being the "regulars" again this week. There are a couple of hangers-on, but nothing like the first week of the new year. You know, I guess can't say that I blame them too much - I've always told my husband that I generally don't like working out. I like the feeling afterwards that I have worked out. I suppose if you never get that good feeling during or after any workout, there's not a whole lot to motivate you, huh?

Thursday, January 07, 2010


Marxo got a reprieve from her shot today at the doctor's office.

She has been dreading this date for a month now. She knew that January 7th was the day that she would have to go for a checkup to the doctor and that she would probably get a shot. Every day this past week, she has informed us as to how many days were left until her checkup.

So, it's not really surprising that she started crying when they called her name and then kept crying as the nurse told us that she was due for her chicken pox vaccine.

The nurse gave me a puzzled look, so I explained to her that the "Buzzy" didn't get to us in time for her appointment and she was worried about getting the shot without it.

The nurse then parted the clouds and a bright ray of sunshine fell down upon Marxo, "You don't have to get your shot today. You can come back later when you get the Buzzy and just get the shot without an appointment."

Of course, this made everything better and the nurse was pretty happy about that too since she was going to take Marxo's blood pressure and didn't want the numbers to be skewed by her apprehension about the shot.

Marxo checked out as a healthy little girl. Tall and skinny - and good blood pressure, too.

I checked on the shipping status of the Buzzy when I got back to work: "Out for delivery". Of course.

Wednesday, January 06, 2010

Full again

Today the fitness center was full again and my faith in humanity was restored. Kind of. It was full of all the normal people plus a few new - but different - people. I guess all those Resolutionites are really just working themselves into it, right?

But tomorrow I'm going to miss working out because Marxo has a doctor's appointment at lunchtime - her 5 year checkup. Yes, it's nearly three months overdue.

Well, you see, I made her 4 year checkup late last year and since the insurance company won't reimburse you for a "checkup" if it hasn't been a year since the last one, I waited to make her 5 year checkup. And then I got caught up in the December craziness, yaddah, yaddah, yaddah... I couldn't get her in until January.

But anyway.

I ordered one of these things early last week, thinking that it would make it here in time for her checkup, in case she ends up getting any shots, but they apparently took the order, held onto it for a week, and finally shipped the thing yesterday. Too bad, too. We already told Marxo that it was coming and that any potential shots she would get tomorrow wouldn't hurt. That'll teach us.

Next on my list of things to order from my Wishlist is one of these handwriting manuals. (I've become a little obsessed with Fellan's handwriting skills - or lack thereof - lately and plan to spend some time with him each night working on it.) And that, along with the Buzzy, and the space heater that I got for my office will use up my Christmas money. Thanks Mom and Dad! :)

Til next time...

Tuesday, January 05, 2010

Well, that didn't last long

I had a hard time trying to decide if I should go to the fitness center yesterday at lunchtime in order to establish myself as a "regular" so that my presence on my favorite exercise bike would be noted and therefore would be semi-retained for me.

Or, if I should just skip going to the fitness center altogether for a couple of weeks to make sure that all the Resolutionites (new word that I just made up in order to describe the people who make New Year's Resolutions) would get the exercise bug out of their system and quit going.

I eventually decided I'd better go and I figured I'd better get down there early so that I could stake my claim with sufficient time to spare. When I got down there at 11am, all the elliptical machines and two of the bikes were already being used! There was only one empty bike left, so I ran into the locker room to change and decided it would be better to risk peeing my pants than losing that last exercise bike to another newbie.

Lucky for me, nobody else beat me to the exercise bike, so I got in my 31 minutes of exercise (if I choose 30 minutes, the program stops in the middle of a hill and that's just annoying), finally got to the toilet, showered and made it back up to my office by around noon.

Today, I was nervous when I headed down there because it was 11:05 by the time I left my office. I was dreading the fact that I would have to use the treadmill to get in my workout today, so when I rounded the corner and saw one person in there, I was overwhelmed with relief... and disbelief. Seriously? One day is all they lasted?

Maybe they're taking it slow, doing the every-other-day thing and they'll all be back tomorrow. I kind of hope so - for their sake! Geesh!

Monday, January 04, 2010

What I did over New Year's break

Last night as we were headed to bed, the husband and I agreed that it has been a nice break the past couple of weeks. We had a really nice visit with my family and the New Year's weekend was fairly nice and relaxing, too.

The festivities started on Wednesday evening (even though I had to work on Thursday) with the Huskers game and the first ever shutout for them at a bowl game - they were on the winning end of it, by the way! While we watched the game, Marxo drew me some pictures:

Those are supposed to be footballs that the players are holding, however, they look suspiciously like ears of corn, which would still be apropos, I guess!

On New Year's Eve, they let us leave from work at around 2pm, so I was home and enjoying some wine and cheese by 4:30. We cooked a nice dinner, watched a few episodes of Star Trek: The Next Generation, and we were all in bed and asleep by midnight.

The next morning, we slept in and I eventually got around to cooking the Lucky Black-eyed Peas, which is more like a stew than the traditional black-eyed peas that you eat with cornbread. I can't believe I'm saying this, but I really look forward to this traditional southern meal of black-eyed peas because this recipe is so darn good. And it's even better the second day!

We went to some friends' house on Saturday afternoon for a kick-off-the New Year get-together and yesterday, we had some friends over. As always happens when we invite people over, we wait until just before they get there to attempt to clean up the house, which proves to be an impossible undertaking, but I was able to organize a small portion of the house next to the kitchen, so at least I felt better about that. This attempt at organization was catalyzed by the fact that the previous day, I organized our tupperware cupboard, so I'm hoping that the reaction will continue through the house for the next couple of months and maybe by my birthday in April, we'll be living in an organized oasis. Baby steps, right?

Anyway, I managed to cook a fairly good meal yesterday for the friends that we invited over. We had beef tenderloin, mashed potatoes, and green beans (which I was particularly proud of because I had no idea how I was going to cook them, but ended up first steaming them and then putting them into a little seasoned oil and semi-sauteeing them and they turned out really tasty!). As the husband and I were trying everything - and marvelling at how it actually turned out pretty well - we had to explain to our friends that we rarely cook, so when something turns out well, we're very surprised!

We exchanged gifts with these friends and as one of my gifts, I received a Tamalera and a promise to come over and teach me how to make some tamales. I can't wait to take her up on the offer!

Before the economy tanked, we had been thinking that 2009 was going to be our "break-out" year. But since that didn't happen, we're hoping for great things from 2010. And I think that's the general mood for everyone these days. Bring on the good luck and prosperity - and here's hoping that the Tiger will protect us this year (when the Chinese New Year finally gets here on Feb. 14!). :)