Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Please, More Happy Cows

We've been paying the extra cash to buy organic milk for about ten years. It was tough in the lean economic times of graduate school but I still figured it was worth it because organic cows are happy cows, right? Well it turns out not so much. Now that big companies are hopping on the organic bandwagon, organic doesn't mean as much as it used to. Some organic milk actually comes from cows kept on feedlots. I want my organic cows to be happy cows out eating in the pasture in areas where grazing makes ecological sense. Now the Department of Agriculture is trying to help out us cow lovers by issuing a new proposed rule that will ensure that organic milk cows spend at least 30% of their diet eating grass on the pasture. I say bring on the happy cows!!

What the Heck is a Ponsi Scheme and How Did It Eat 35 billion dollars?

Does anyone else wonder where the 35 billion dollars lost in the Bernard Madoff scandal go? How can you lose 35 billion dollars? That whole mess has majorly messed up the philanthropy world and the sums of money lost by non-profits and individuals is staggering. I know you have to be pretty rich to begin with to be able to lose 30 million dollars but still, can you imagine waking up one morning to have someone tell you that your 30 million is gone???

A Christmas Miracle

I hate to jinx things by even mentioning it but we have had not one, not two, but three nights of no night time interruptions from the little people. Josie has been sleeping like a champ and some combination of threats, incentives, and a slightly earlier bedtime has also got Lucy back to sleeping through the night. My wish for the new year is that this trend continues. I need all the sleep I can get.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

All I Want For Christmas is A Dolphin, Two Whales, and an Octopus

We went to the mall this weekend and had our photo taken with Santa Claus. It was a bit of a disaster because I got grumpy following Josie around the mall for 30 minutes while they developed the prints and got everything together and then Mitch was peeved because the picture files that they gave us were pretty low resolution. Santa was very nice though and he had a good time talking to Mitch and Lucy (Josie and I were in and out in a matter of seconds).

The best part was when Santa asked Lucy what she wanted for Christmas and she said,
"A dolphin, some whales, an octopus..." Later when she was telling her friends about seeing Santa Claus (we went to a bowling birthday party in the afternoon) she said, "And I told Santa that I wanted a lot of things from the ocean for christmas."

So May your Christmas and New Year be filled with the joy of dolphins, the songs of whales, and the flexibility of octopii.

Jonathan Richman Still Rocks

Mitch and I got to go see Jonathan Richman on Friday night thanks to the babysitting prowess of our friend's Seth and Elise. It was a great concert. I felt like the universe gave me a small gift when Jonathan opened with some song about suffering that I had never heard before that had a chorus about how you can't avoid suffering and you can't refuse defeat because then prozac wins and you become a really annoying falsely happy person. It was a message that found fertile ground in my current mood so I was happy to have the universe (through Jonathan) affirm that it is o.k. to be bummed out sometimes and that you should embrace your sadness sometimes.

Jonathan is still a very quirky guy who spins his guitar around and does funny little dances. It was a very enjoyable show with a small but enthusiastic crowd. Jonathan played some songs I had never heard of but were fun to listen to as well as some classics like Lesbian Bar.

It was great to get out and hear some live music since we hardly ever get to do that any more. Thanks Jonathan, thanks Seth and Elise.

Hmmm - Chalk one up for duplicity

So I've been looking into new things to do work-wise recently. Not radically different from what I currently do but maybe a step up on the decision-making chain or a series of new challenges, or maybe a change of location. I like my current job but I would like to do something different, learn new things, you know. Anyway, I've applied for a couple of things recently. It's been challenging because I'm not sure exactly what I want to do next and Mitch and I aren't sure if we want to leave Ventura (well Mitch for sure likes it here A LOT).

Recently I had an opportunity to take the high ground in a job situation. To be completely honest and put all my cards on the table. And boy did it ever bite me in the rear. I don't want to go into any specifics because it is boring and I don't want to tell the universe about my work life. Suffice it to say that the outcome was a disappointment to me and I will have to reconsider the taking the high road excessive honesty option in the future...

Thursday, December 4, 2008

catching up

Turkey Day 2008. Lucy looks disgruntled but really she had a good time. Check out Rob's stache. should it stay or should it go?

A rare rainy day in Ventura.

Josie wants to know when the horse races start.

I haven't written in a while. I've been a bit caught up in my own work-related angst combined with sleep deprivation due to J.B. and just haven't had the energy for writing much. Actually I haven't had the energy for much except sleeping. Here are a few quick thoughts before I go to bed:

1. could george bush be more of an a-hole? i can't believe he is doing nothing to deal with the economic crisis but somehow still has time have the EPA pass rules allowing strip mining ("mountain top mining") to directly dump millions of tons of slag into creeks. nice work george.

2. had a nice thanksgiving with friends. did make me feel a bit bummed to be doing child maintenance instead of having adult conversations for a lot of the time. however, the girls were very cute and did have a great time eating sand and running full speed into the waves.

3. my father in law pointed out an excellent contradiction in my personality / personal beliefs. how can i totally hate being told what to do (not a big fan of any rules applied to me personally) but still be a fan of big government? what can i say, one of the joys of being human is the ability to strongly hold contradictory beliefs at the same time.

4. hoping to see jonathan richmond tomorrow night. if we get to go, i'll let you know how it is.

5. discussing whether to live in sunny southern california forever or to move somewhere (anywhere) possibly back to the rainy pacific northwest, is providing extra doses of stress and confusion into the old marriage...

6. looking forward to making some christmas gifts this year. will we be able to find the time when all crafts are not eaten or destroyed by our children prior to completion?

7. trying to catch up with a few friends from childhood, kristina coker, anna hosick, and andromeda dunker. hoping to connect via the internet superhighway - stina, anna, andromeda - are you out there?

8. much happiness, lucy went to the dentist for the first time. no cavities. i am so relieved. i brush her teeth so if she has cavities it is my fault. she does, of course, have a massive overbite. the dentist blames the pacifier, but have you seen my teeth recently?

9. we're trying for another round of crying it out with josie. she does have some serious stamina though. i can't believe it has basically been 14 months since we have had a solid night's sleep... it wears a person down. how many hours do you think she will stay awake and cry? i predict three max...