Monday, December 31, 2012

Happy Monday

And a happy New Year to you too!

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Christmas!

You can go over to the FP Gal's blog to see pictures if you'd like.  She got some good ones, natch.  I just wanted to post some general thoughts about the day.


  • Coming downstairs on Christmas day is simply enormously better with children.  (At least this is true if they stay in bed until they are supposed to.  Ours did.)  They were enormously excited to see the presents and stockings full of loot.  Fun!
  • As is our tradition, we loaded up everything and took it over to the FP Gal's parents.  There we had a good breakfast and opened gifts.  (I suggested that we sit at the table and talk until Relia spontaneously combusted, but I was over-ruled.)  The pile of presents was very big.
  • Relia insisted that the FP Gal open the first present.  It was a picture frame that she, herself, had picked out for her mom.  The FP Gal approved and she was very happy.
  • DF got trucks, cars, trucks and more cars.  He got two different Maters (from 'Cars').  Later he introduced them to each other and had them compare features.  He was so excited that we didn't even get around to opening a couple of his presents.
  • Relia got all of her's open though!  She got a plethora, in the full sense of the word.  And she loved all of it.
  • Me?  I got some very nice things.  Some marionberry syrup and pie filling.  A cookbook.  A new game that I'm excited to play with.  All in all, some very nice things.  
  • I also got one thing that was NOT a Christmas gift.  The FP Gal found a used elliptical machine and got it for us.  So I'll be ellipting away some weight in the New Year, you betcha!
  • On a down note, the car wouldn't start when it was time for us to go.  Luckily, we'd brought two cars so we got home just fine.  But man, it is not fun if you can't depend on your car in the winter!
The rest of the day was down time.  Then work for me.  (Yes, on the holiday.  But it's slow and they pay me extra so I'm not complaining.  Yawning, but there are no complaints.)  
A very good day.  


Saturday, December 22, 2012

Royal bloodlines

Last night I read to Relia and DF.  The story had a princess in it (a bewitched and deadly princess, Hans Christian Andersen, you know).  Relia wanted to know how she could be a princess.  I told her that she needed to be born into the right family. 
She then proceeded to tell me that she wished she'd been born into that family because she'd make a great princess or queen.  I told her that Grandma D would like that because she'd love to meet Queen Elizabeth.  After a moment's thought, she told me that she'd help make that happen if she could. 
It didn't occur to me until this morning that she could theoretically marry into being a princess.  I don't think that I'll mention that though.  Most princes are jerks.

Friday, December 21, 2012

Have a Great Friday

DF helped me pick this out.  At first he wanted geese but I convinced him we should keep looking.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Little Lion

So how is our Little Lion, anyway?  He's mobile as could be.  Crawls everywhere.  Wants to crawl all the time.  And when he finds an opportunity, he pulls himself up to standing.  If you give him some fingers to hold, he'll do some short walking. 
Relia walked between eight and nine months.  If LL is on the same track, he'll be walking in the next week or two.  And yes, that's a sobering thought.  We took down the baby gates earlier this year and they're back up again.  Oh well, another year or two and we'll be done with them for good.
LL's biggest danger right now is the love of his brother.  DF wants to show his love by getting as close to him as he possibly can.  Sometimes this is scary as DF doesn't understand their relative strengths.  At times it means that LL is knocked down.  Or simply surprised and frightened.  I've got a feeling that this will go on for decades.
We've mostly switched over to formula and cherrios.  Some actual baby food.  My cyclopsism doesn't present too many problems, but I find it very hard to hit as small a target as a baby mouth from a couple of feet away.  So the FP Gal takes care of that. 
We're happy with him and he seems mostly happy.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Onward?

I'm sorry that the posting has been so light lately.  It's been hard for me to find time/energy to write.  That's not much of an excuse though.  The kids have still been saying cute things and I'm still finding interesting things online.  I just haven't been able to motivate myself to put anything down.
Plus, it feels like I've written this all before.  It feels like I've written everything about the kids before.  First crawls, favorite TV shows.  The whole shebang.  And I can't figure out how to make that interesting enough for others to read.
But I think that will change.
On Monday morning I talked briefly with Relia about the shootings in CT.  I won't try and do that conversation justice, but I will note that at the end she told me that if she dies, she wants us to have another baby.  Never thought I'd hear that from a five year old.  (And I didn't tell her that we've closed down that option.)  It was very sweet.
Later that evening she asked me if I was going to blog about the shootings.  I told her I doubted that I would but what really struck me is that someday she is going to read this blog.  She will read all of the entries, possibly focusing on the ones that prominently feature her. And so will DF and LL.  And good lord, LL has been cheated.
I've hardly posted about him.  You can see pictures of him over at the FP Gal's blog.  And I'm sure he'll get some mentions once he starts talking.  But right now he's getting royally short-changed.  Heck, they all are.
Plus, well, if my parents were keeping diaries in the 70's and 80's, I'd go back and read through them.  I'd thumb through them now for tips on raising great kids, since my parents obviously did such a great job.  It's quite possible that my children will feel the same way.  (Alternately, this will create a trail of evidence for their future therapist to work through...)
Anyway, kids, I'm on it.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Happy Monday

Relia picked this one out.  It looks nice and warm to me and I won't fight that today.

Sunday, December 09, 2012

Let it Snow

We're having what we call in Minnesota a 'significant' snowfall.  Somewhere upwards of six inches but maybe not a full foot.  I've sent the FP Gal out twice to shovel (she must not have done it right the first time).  (Actually, while I'm mentioning this, shoveling is the one outdoor maintenance activity that we both enjoy.  Neither one of us really enjoys mowing.  Raking is ok, but just barely.)
Last winter was so mild that we didn't have much shoveling to do.  I'm not sure if DF even remembers what a big snowfall looks like.  Fortunately, he got to play outside for a bit today.  Which reminds me; we are totally unprepared for wet snowpants, boots, mittens, etc.  I'm sure we'll figure it out.
Right now the snow looks beautiful.  It's piled up on the railings and the tree branches.  It will be much less charming four/five months from now.  But today it's ok.

Thursday, December 06, 2012

Groove Holmes

This weekend we got into the car and I turned on some music from my iPod.  My whole playlist (thousands of songs) started up on random and something jazzy came up.  I think it was some Gershwin, sung by Chris Connor.  Anyway, Relia asked if that music was jazz.  I told her it certainly was and when she asked for more I switched over to my 'Jazz' playlist.  This came up:

Go ahead, hit play and listen a bit while you read. I ran across Richard 'Groove' Holmes some years ago in a jazz compilation. He's an organist. Not one of the big names in jazz circles. But oh man, he lays down a nice line. I've kept the playlist going this week and the kids haven't complained. (I kind of jumped the gun on the Christmas music, so we were ready for a break.)  I would love, love, love for them to have some kind of appreciation of jazz while growing up.
Actually, I think about this quite a bit.  I am so picky, so passionate about my music.  I want the kids to somehow share that passion but this can be a tricky business.  The FP Gal has told me that I have to be careful not to slag their taste in music, especially when she goes through the inevitable boy band phase.
I just hope that we can somehow miss out on hip-hop and rap! 
Kids, if you're reading this years in the future from now, go ahead and love funk.  Love harmony.  And especially, love melody.  Don't fall too much in love with pure rhythm.  It doesn't deserve it.

Tuesday, December 04, 2012

Overheard

This morning while driving the boys to daycare, DF noticed the moon and we had this conversation:

DF: Let's talk about the moon.
Me: Ok.
DF: Where do moons live?
Me: In the sky.  [ed - I'm fine with this answer, even from a technical standpoint.]
DF: And what do moons eat?
Me: Uh, rocks . . . maybe?
DF: No!  I think rocks eat moons!

Apparently it's time to start with the science programs.

Sunday, December 02, 2012

Ponder Vs T-Jack

I think it's fair to say that Christian Ponder didn't look so good against the Packers today.  His QB line was 12/25, 119 yards, 1 TD, 2 int.  That comes out to a passer rating of 41.96.  Which is yucky.  I commented on Facebook that Tarvaris Jackson could probably have done better.  Which made me curious to compare the two. 
T-Jack only played two games at Lambaugh, both losses.  His ratings were 35.4 and 59.0.  Yuck.  But this made me wonder about a bigger comparison between the two.  Over the last six games, the Vikings are 2-4 and at times have looked cover-your-eyes awful.  Here are Ponder's ratings, from those games:
35.5 (win over Arizona)
74.8 (loss to Tampa)
37.3 (loss to Seattle)
114.2 (win over Detroit)
58.2 (loss to Chicago)
42.0 (loss to Green Bay)


One good game, one ok game and four stinkers.  Even in the win over Arizona, Ponder only threw for 58 yards.  So how does Jackson stack up?  He started 19 games over three years here in Minnesota.  Here are his four worst games by passer rating:
35.4 (loss at GB)
26.4 (loss at Det)
44.2 (loss at Dal)
50.0 (win hosting Chi)

On par with Ponder's four worst.  Ok, but how about seasonal numbers?  Jackson first:
2006 62.5 (2 starts)
2007 70.8 (12 starts)
2008 95.4 (5 starts)

And now for Ponder:
2011 70.1 (10 starts)
2012 82.0 (11 starts, does not include @GB)

Ponder is maybe a hair better than T-Jack.  Maybe.  We couldn't wait for T-Jack to leave.  I'm starting to feel the same way about Christian Ponder.