22 November 2014

Weekend linkage

Elizabethan superheroes. Iron Man in a neck ruff!

Timelapse video of one day in UK airspace. Amazing.

Jim Gaffigan on binge-watching. Ha! I am currently on a self-imposed hiatus from Netflix because I just managed to watch all 5 seasons of Chuck in less than six weeks. Which is quite enough for a while. #ohyes #ilovechuck #ialsolovejimgaffigan

This is clever: a typeface for dyslexics.

Russell Moore's address from the recent Vatican Colloquium on Marriage and Family.
People are looking for a cosmic mystery, for a love that is stronger than death. They cannot articulate it, and perhaps would be horrified to know it, but they are looking for God. The Sexual Revolution leads to the burned-over boredom of sex shorn of mystery, of relationship shorn of covenant. The question for us, as we pass through the Samaria of the Sexual Revolution, is whether we have water for Samaria, or only fire. In the wake of the disappointment sexual libertarianism brings, there must be a new word about more permanent things, such as the joy of marriage as a permanent, conjugal, one-flesh reality between a man and woman. We must keep lit the way to the old paths.
Great TED talk: Leana Wen on "What your doctor won't disclose."
If you go to your doctor because of back pain, you might want to know he's getting paid 5,000 dollars to perform spine surgery versus 25 dollars to refer you to see a physical therapist, or if he's getting paid the same thing no matter what he recommends.
 An interesting perspective from the American Enterprise Institute: "The Crucial Importance of Stay-At-Home Wives," specifically in terms of social capital.
It is entirely understandable that some wives work full time, either for the fulfillment of a vocation or to make money–the same reasons men work full time. But when either partner in a marriage—and it will usually be the wife—chooses to devote full time to being a parent and neighbor instead, that choice should not just be accepted, but celebrated.

21 November 2014

Family snippets

"Ellie, if you don't behave we are going to box you up and ship you to Kamchatka."
-Daddy takes parenting cues from Risk

Ellie's capacity for imitation and imagination astounds me. Most of her activities begin with what she sees me do, but she gives them her own spin.

She enthusiastically pushes the Swiffer and hurls clothes into hampers. She uses dishcloths to clean everything from baseboards to blocks. She switches on her musical toys, then performs wild dances around the living room. She "reads" her books with great animation. She builds increasingly complex Duplo architecture. She provides sound effects for her toy cars. She rocks her baby doll while singing a wordless lullaby; she gives it water and feeds it. (Chocolate, mmm! she says.)

Pregnancy is still fine. A healthy and squirming Jellybean, no medical complications or undue hardship. I passed my gestational diabetes test with flying colors-- since Ellie was so big, I thought I should take the test, but no cause for alarm-- and my iron levels are even normal this time.

All that said, I have already told Jared that I feel ready to be done. I am tired of being large.

Jared has been working on Ellie's new bedroom every free weekend. It required some plaster and paint work, and had a rather vigorous draft that needed to be fixed, but all that should be finished before long; I am looking forward to the decorating portion of the project. Though Jellybean probably won't sleep in the nursery at first, we will move Ellie out of the nursery and into her "big girl room" as soon as we can, just to get the transition over with. I think she might sleep in a pack-n-play at first, rather than in her new toddler bed. I don't feel like teaching her to stay in bed at the same time that I'm trying to figure out a newborn. :)

17 November 2014

things I have told Ellie not to eat

Unpeeled tangerines
Candy wrappers
Coffee grounds
Pine needles
Other people's toothbrushes
Toilet paper
Diaper cream
Price tags
Sharpie markers
Rotten tomatoes
Grocery lists
My keys
Battery-operated candles
Semi-raw chicken from the trash can
Spent matches
A piece of cement

And crayons. So many crayons-- I don't know what Crayola puts in those things but they are toddler crack.

13 November 2014

phfr #14


Jared keeps a plant at work, and it had become far too large for its pot. He brought it home and I split it; one for me, one for him. Mine now lives on top of the china cabinet.


I'm getting Jellybean's clothes ready. After some Carter's and Zulily shopping, here are some of my favorite new pieces: a tiny pointelle onesie, warm mint-green pants, and soft satin shoes.


I came home from an afternoon out with friends to find Ellie helping Daddy rake leaves. She was mildly excited to see me and very excited to drink out of my water bottle. A bit of dribbling and sputtering ensued, but she's getting pretty good at it.

She wants to be exactly like me and it is overwhelming sometimes. I know that she won't want that forever. She'll become her own person with different interests, and besides, once she gets old enough she will be able to see my weaknesses-- I won't be the perfect heroine of her life anymore. All the same, I want to be the kind of woman who is worth imitating.

File this one under Pregnancy Is Rarely Glamorous: I just bought a maternity support brace for my back, and it is awesome. My hip feels so much better when I wear it. I think orthotic sneakers will be next.

07 November 2014

Weekend linkage

"Adventures with George Washington." I giggle easily, but only a few things can actually elicit rip-roaring laughter, and this was one of them.

What kids all around the world eat for breakfast. I'm a sucker for this kind of thing. The pictures of the girls from Istanbul made me miss Turkish breakfasts desperately. Perhaps I should start buying cucumbers and feta to accompany our usual morning fare (which is a panful of eggs, either fried or scrambled, and sourdough bread with lots of butter).

"Undisguised Blessings."
I can look at my life and say I am blessed because I have this hardworking husband. Because I have a house – with three bedrooms, two bathrooms, a fenced-in yard, and a refrigerator so full of food that I lose track of things and end up throwing some of it away. Because I have this daughter – who came to life where babies before her did not, who is healthy and robust and vibrant and sleeps almost all night . . . 
[But] I was blessed –that is, receiving undeserved gifts from God– before this, when I did not have a baby. And there is blessing in challenging babies, awkward-looking babies, non-sleeping babies, or babies who won’t latch on to nurse… and there is profound blessing in babies who develop differently. So we misuse the word blessing when we think it only references things we want to call “good.”

"Literary Starbucks." Cute. Haven't you always wondered what your favorite authors and fictional characters would order?

I try to avoid indulging in schadenfreude. But the past week's frantic kerfuffle over that street harassment video has been too good to pass up. From National Review, "How The Far Left Hijacked A Cat-Calling Debate and Started to Eat Itself."