Sunday, June 29, 2008

Thumbs Way Up

I have to admit, I wasn't thrilled by the concept of this movie before yesterday. But it rained all day so we went to see it.

It is FANTASTIC. Go see it. On the big screen. With or without kids. And watch the credits. Trust me.

Friday, June 27, 2008

Just because...

I have got to figure out a way to spend the whole summer here...

Thursday, June 26, 2008

You Like?


Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Damned Sunroof

The kids spent two nights at my mom's this week, giving me one whole, glorious day of alone-ness. I love my children more than life, but I also love the occasional break.

Life being as exciting as it is in one's late 30s, I used the morning of my one glorious day to run errands. The morning was beautiful and I opened the sunroof to let the sun stream across my shoulders, and then opened the rear windows in my tres-chic minivan to get a bit of a breeze going.

By the time I pulled into the parking lot of our fancy-schmancy strip shopping center (fancy but for the CVS, which was my destination), AC/DC was blasting out of my stereo and I was in full rock-out, fantastic-mood mode. 

You! Shook me All! Night! Long!

I parked, probably a bit too abruptly, and shut the engine off. It wasn't until I stepped out that I saw another mom from my son's class. Dressed in a manner appropriate for a fancy-schmancy shopping expedition. Staring. At me.

I smiled. "I'm, um, alone today," I explained.

She nodded and gave me that polite half-grin people give you when they've decided you're a crazy person.

I looked down and grinned. "I didn't always live in Bethesda."

Monday, June 23, 2008


George Carlin was one of the very few people in the world I classify as truly funny. He was a make-you-think kind of comedian, and there aren't many left.

I'm sad to hear he passed away last night, and grateful for his thoughts and work.

RIP, funny man.

Thursday, June 19, 2008


We Catholics have taken a lot of crap over the past five or six years. And yes, it ticks me off. I'm fond of telling people to repeat something they've just said about Catholics while substituting "Jewish" in the sentence. They realize they'd have never, ever uttered the thought that way. But it's OK as long as the maligned group is Catholic. 

*shaking head*

I could go on about this. I could tell you to check the records on what single group gave the most money to Katrina recovery efforts or to clean up the typhoon several years ago (here's a hint: they like a guy named Benedict a lot). I could ask you to look at the leading agency spearheading international adoptions into the U.S. (it's Catholic Charities). I could invite you to my church or to any other to see the good work Catholics are doing every single day, but you could probably find that out by visiting your neighborhood soup kitchen, homeless shelter, or battered women's organization. Believe it or not, we don't all have big hair to cover up the horns underneath. We don't all have dozens of barefoot rugrats racing around. We're not all holier-than-thou and preachy. But as a rule, we don't like the current atmosphere as it concerns our faith.

That's not the point today, though, so I won't get into that. ;)

Today, I want to share something that's starting to creep around the internet. Even if you ignore the source, you have to admit it's pretty cool. And to a Catholic like me, it's even cooler. Maybe it's coincidence. But maybe not. :)

RIP, Tim. We miss you. Even though you know. 

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Letters I'd Like To Send

Dear Bill Gates:

My new Macbook arrived yesterday and you can kiss my lily-white ass, old buddy. No software mumbo-jumbo. No CDs to mess with. No drivers to load. Plug and play, right out of the box. Built-in calendar. Super email program. Outstanding photo editing program. No viruses. Couldn't. Be. Easier. And I am in loooooooooooove. 

Tell your buddy Mr. Dell he can have a smooch too. Tech support, by phone and in person, for three years. In the U.S. No more calls to India to have somebody read the owner's manual to me in halting English while claiming to be named "Bill." By the way, I can read the damned manual myself.

Rock on, Steve Jobs. Rock ON.


Converted Kim


Dear DH:

If you waffle on the house once more, I swear I'm going to stuff you in the toaster. Pick a direction and go that way. I'm begging.

Your Irritated Wife


Dear Discovery Channel:

We get it. Catching Alaskan crabs is hard, dangerous work. Seriously. We understand. It's awe-inspiring. Now could you please put something else on occasionally? And while we're chatting, ixnay on the Ford Truck promos. You're above that.


A Former Mike Rowe Fan


Dear Cashier at the Grocery Store:

I'm not sure what reaction you expected when you told me that "your boy" who was driving "got locked up" and you had to walk home last night, but impressed isn't on the list. Just scan.

Not A Posse Member


Dear John McCain:

Shut UP about ethanol, OK? Just shut up. 

All The Republicans Who Read Once In Awhile


My Darling Children:

Enough with the singing of the entire High School Musical soundtrack. Mommy's brain is trying to squeeze out of her ears and make a run for it, and that's not entirely comfortable for Mommy. There are 11 weeks left until school starts. Please, for your loving mother who endured a collective 30 hours of labor and two unmedicated births (NOT by choice), choose another song. You'll inherit more in the end if you let me live longer.

Mommy (It's hard to believe that I couldn't see, you were always there beside me...)


Dear Spanish Telemarketers:

I swear to God, I don't speak the language. You can stop calling me.


Kim, the native English speaker and ignorant single-languaged American

Sunday, June 15, 2008

June 15

Today we had pancakes with whipped cream and sprinkles for breakfast, with chocolate milk. The waitress gave us all huge chocolate chip cookies too, to take home for later.

We played mini-golf. We had Happy Meals for lunch, followed by Hershey Special Dark nuggets.

When we got home, we put together a Snap Circuits remote controlled rover and ran it up and down the street. We hung a tire swing and took turns whipping through the backyard and giggling. We picked out paint for a model rocket and sprayed it navy blue on the back deck, and then we had pizza for dinner.

After that, we went out for ice cream and sat on a park bench getting sticky and sweet. Tomorrow, we' ll have the cookies from the restaurant, drive the rover some more, and finish the rocket.

Today, my sweet boy turned seven.

Happy birthday, to the love of my life. I hope you had as much fun as I did.

Friday, June 13, 2008


It's 10:44 a.m. and I just picked DS up from his last day of first grade.

Happy summer, everyone!

Wednesday, June 11, 2008


It's been a good day. I helped out at an ice cream sundae party for the kids in my son's class who have summer birthdays. The kids were sticky and dirty and hyper by the end, but it was great fun. Their teachers, being smart women, let them play on the playground for the rest of the day afterwards (they had a half-day today). Talk about a bunch of ecstatic six-year-olds! :)

After I went to pick him up at lunchtime, the house didn't feel right. Cooler than outside, but I didn't hit that invisible wall of AC when I came in--and we walked home from school and I was good and hot. I debated with myself for awhile as to whether I was nuts or it really was busted, and finally called our superfantastic AC guy, who was here within a half-hour. He opened the door and agreed with me--something's wrong. Our AC unit is 18 years old, and DH and I really feared this was it for the old girl (hide the credit cards!). But it was a quick fix, and a free fix, and we're humming along at 76 dry, fun-loving degrees right now. Bummer it broke, but I'm all kinds of thankful for the outcome.

One more half day of school and then a two-hour day of school, and it's summer in my house. Much as my kids love school, I think we're all ready for a break. Looking forward to not needing to get dressed and eat and get out of the house by a certain time for awhile. Also looking forward to having both kids in one school in the fall. Yee-ha!

My buddy Michel Richard won another James Beard award this weekend. Yay Michel! In the words of my ultra-cool first grader, you rock, dude! No, he's not really my buddy. But I wish he were. Man, what I would give to know all he does! Now buck the rumors and stay in DC, OK? California cuisine is really overrated, you know...and we love you here...

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Love this!!

Ignoring the fact that it's ultimately for the lottery...

Monday, June 9, 2008

From the Silence...

Sorry for the quiet lately. We had a 2.5 day power outage last week which threw me work-wise. And there just hasn't been much to say, truthfully.

The power went out Wednesday afternoon and came back Friday morning. Not a whole lot of fun, but not the end of the world. Eerily enough, we'd just bought a small Honda generator three weeks before (long story), and we were very thankful for it. It's just big enough to run both the refrigerator and a box fan, so we didn't lose all our food and we had a breeze in the heat. I also discovered that Energizer makes cell phone chargers that use standard AA batteries. That was worth the investment, as we also lost our home phones. All's back to normal. :)

We saw Kung Fu Panda last night. It was cute, but be warned that there are a few scenes that were frightening to the smaller kids in the theatre, including DD, who left a permanent imprint of her chin in my upper arm. There's also some less-than-appropriate language for a G-rated movie. I liked it--the chemistry between Jack Black and Dustin Hoffman is hilarious--but it wasn't Horton.

Today, I'm wearing a shirt that was too tight three weeks ago. :)

DS turns seven this coming weekend. I'm a little stumped for his gift. I can't find anything space-related that he's either not too old for or that he doesn't have (or that I can afford). He has enough Legos thanks to yard sales, and we haven't yet given them the Wii that's hiding until Christmas. He picked out a few things at Toys R Us yesterday--a few RC trucks and cars--but nothing I was really excited about. *sigh* I'd love to find something he'd use more than a few times--a cool building set or something.

It's the last week of school for us, and half-days all week. I'm looking forward to a less-regimented schedule for awhile.

Finally, a plug. If you haven't learned yet about these guys, take a few minutes and read up. They're doing some great things. More and more of our kids are being affected by this, and it's time for all of us to speak up, even if it hasn't directly hit our families. There's just no good reason for it, you know?

More soon...

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Don't Believe All You See

Sorry for the absence, gang. This house-hunting business is exhausting. We've spend the last two weeks obsessing over a house that was very close to what we want...but no cigar, for the money.

A couple weeks ago, I blogged about photos of houses and the frustration of seeing a house photo that looks gorgeous, only to find out on arrival that there's something big wrong that's not seen there. This first hit us 10 years ago, when searching for our current house--the beautiful yellow farmhouse that looked so great in the photo was (literally) nine feet from the D.C. beltway.

Like we wouldn't notice that.

It borders on deception and always leaves me with a bad taste in my mouth. I mean, why not just be honest about it? Some people might not mind that, but for those who do, the visit wastes at least their time and probably their Realtors' time.

Here are real examples of houses we've looked at in the past 8 weeks:

Pretty, yes? This is the latest temptation. First off, the listing says it's a four-bedroom house. Not so much. Three bedrooms plus a finished attic that I guess could conceivably have a bed in it, but isn't really a bedroom. But the kicker with the photo seen here is that this house sits atop a very steep hill. 20 slate steps from street to front door, to be exact. But here, it looks nice and flat and perfect. Deal-killer for those who are older or even slightly handicapped. Why not just show it?


Beautiful. 1912 farmhouse. But what you don't see is the right side of this lot, which has been sold to a developer and on which there will be something huge and dwarfing. And you also don't see that the rear addition to the house is quite literally falling off, or that the foundation has massive cracks and crumbling. Visit and see. Waste your time. Join me.

Nice old brick colonial. Wooded, lots of parking, slightly overgrown. Again, it's what you don't see. In this case, that'd be Connecticut Avenue, which is a six-lane, 55 mph road, that is six feet (yes, I measured) from the back door of this house. Seriously, trip going outside and you're roadkill.
Frustrating doesn't begin to cover it. Show the warts, brokers out there. Stop pretending we won't see then when we arrive. Save me some of my precious time. I'm begging.