I'm going to the doctor today because The KingofHearts thinks I sound like I have pneumonia. I don't really think that's the case, but I really want to score some of that sweet, sweet cough medicine with codeine in it which The KoH refers to as laudanum... because some people want to hoard it all for themselves and took the free stash others donated to the cause with them last time they left town.

Last night The KoH had had it with me and my barking seal impersonation, so he bought a fifth of whiskey, made a homemade cough medicine, told me drink it and sent me to bed at six o'clock. I was too exhausted to argue. I slept straight through until three when I got up, fed the baby, and then went back to bed. It was the most sleep I've had in a night since The Caterpillar was born - ten months ago.

I feel marginally better -- still not recovered from this plague, or bird flu, or whatever it is -- but not so much like death warmed over. See what happens when you incorrectly blame your laryngitis on a Rush concert? The gods will get you... as they, apparently, are big Rush fans too.


The Caterpillar said her first word. Well, maybe not so much a word, per se, more of a "mmmmam mam mam mam mam mammmmm" while she's crawling desperately toward me in an attempt to make me pick her up. But she doesn't say this to the KingofHearts so I'm counting this in the "she said mom before dad column" which I totally deserve... because The Dormouse? Her first word to me was cracker and I couldn't handle that kind of racial stereotyping* a second time.


Aside, I've only just now noticed how close the word Momma is to mammeries. Coincidence? Maybe she's not trying to say momma after all.


The Caterpillar has begun to stand unaided for short periods of time (like seconds, we're talking here -- so no clamoring for photos yet) and this morning took two unaided steps from the footstool to my arms. It wasn't so much walking as it was falling with style.


I registered The Dormouse for kindergarten in the fall. She technically doesn't fit the age cutoff, but only missed it by a couple of weeks.** At the early entrance evaluation they found her ready to enter kindergarten - I think because she can spell better than many of the teachers in my county.


In order to register The Dormouse for school, I had to prove that we lived in the county***. On the phone before hand, the person I spoke with told me to bring the deed to my house or a rental agreement, showing that we lived in the school district. So I went to the bank, pulled a copy of the deed out of the safe deposit box and brought it with me. Here's a snippet of the conversation I had with the registrar:

"OK - now we'll just need two pieces of mail addressed to you to prove you live in the county."

"Here's the DEED TO MY HOUSE."

"I'm sorry but that's not appropriate proof of residence anymore. We need two pieces of mail addressed to you at this address."

"You mean the DEED TO MY HOUSE isn't good enough?"

"Well, you could have property in other counties."

*pointing* "It says, 'primary residence' right here... on the DEED TO MY HOUSE."

"I'm still gonna need two pieces of mail."

"Isn't it easier to forge a piece of mail addressed to my name at a different address than a notarized DEED TO MY HOUSE?"

"Well, it's just the new rule. I guess they're worried about people trying to fake documents."

"So you get a lot of people trying to fake their way into this school district?"



While going to Pennsylvania for the Independence Day holiday, we innocently stopped to get gas a few miles outside of our destination. Four miles down the road, my beloved station wagon (it's NotanSUV!) started to choke and sputter and the check engine light began flashing indiscriminately. Previously, it had been running fine. Cause and effect, anyone?

We made it into town and took it to a mechanic who determined that the fuel filter had been shredded - most likely due to the bad gas we had received at a major gas station chain. He took a sample of the gas from the tank and put it in a plastic bottle, where we watched sediment collect at the bottom. He put a new fuel filter in and told us there wasn't much we could do but run through this tank and hope the fuel injectors hadn't been damaged.
We managed to get home after the weekend, but new gas didn't correct the problem. So we took it to a mechanic at home when we got back and by that time the first cylinder had completely stopped working. It was now more economical to replace the entire engine than repair it. Three grand later, I have a working vehicle again. Anyone think I can recover the damages from this sham oil company fine institution?

Ha ha. That's what I thought too.


I entered some photos in a local photo exhibit. I had them printed with a new online service I hadn't tried before and was quite unhappy with the results. I think it was my fault for choosing the cheap paper, but they came out looking more like posters than photographs. I didn't have time or money, see above, to reprint them so I just submitted them as was. Not only did my submission get chosen to be hung in the exhibit, but I won a judges' choice award... further exhibiting why my aesthetic impulses do not qualify me to do this for a living.


Does anyone other than me see Miley Cyrus as the next brilliant young star on a collision course with rehab and a psychiatric diagnosis? Or have I just been watching too much daytime television this week?


*I made this joke to the Director of The Dormouse's preschool (a black woman) one day when she was asking me to tell her about the kid's verbal development and her first words. She laughed for about .5 seconds, then grew nervous and serious and began hypothesizing that she might have heard the phrase "Polly Want a Cracker" on some television show and that was to what she was referring. Clearly, humor 101 isn't taking up a lot of space in the curriculum here.

** When she was born, she was actually within the cutoff date, but they've moved it back more than a month since we moved into the county. We asked to have her evaluated for early entrancce - a ridiculously long, involved process for which no living person can tell you the criteria they use to decide. I don't recommend it. Just plan to have your babies before September, trust me.

*** Some of the worst schools around are in our county.