Tuesday, December 29, 2009

SQOTD

We were at a local Carniceria (Mexican butcher) picking up some awesome marinated flank steak. When I went to the counter to pay I saw that they had some Spanish peanuts and said "Oh, look... they have Spanish peanuts"!

Squink looked at me and said "Does that mean you can speak Spanish when you eat them"?

I looked at him and smiled and said "Why yes, I believe they do"

Later that day I was trying to translate a joke from Spanish into English to my husband and finally gave up and said that I just could not translate it correctly into English.

Squinky looked at me and said "You need to eat the Spanish peanuts then, mama".

They grow up so fast

Thursday, December 17, 2009

SQOTD

He's already a charmer... "Mom, you have a big, beautiful butt, not a
big, fat butt".

Thursday, December 03, 2009

SQOTD

A Christmas song was playing on the radio that is based on Johann
Pachelbel's Cannon in D.

Mom (to Schatzy): That's Pachelbel as the background right?

Squink: You mean Taco Bell, mommy?

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

SQOTD

"No mom, I want food water".
~ said after I gave him a glass of tap water. Yes, our tap water is
that icky... we filter it at home.

Friday, November 20, 2009

SQOTD

Squink: "Mom, can we have a food drive?"

Me: "Sure".

Squink: "First we need a truck".

~ at least he's ambitious.

SQOTD

As he started to eat his sticky rice with his hand: "Mom, I'm
pretending my fingers are a fork".

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

SQOTD

"She is only wearing underwear".
~ pointing to a picture of Wonder Woman.


"In my Arizona, there is a werewolf and it killed me and I then I live
again". ~ telling me a tale of unknown origins.

Monday, November 09, 2009

SQOTD

"Mom, I have to talk. Because we have brains in our heads"
~ in response to my telling him he has to be quiet as it is bed time.

Sunday, November 08, 2009

SQOTD

"Mama, I want to have my birthday at the hotel, the one with the
rooms". ~ while discussing birthday party options.

Monday, October 19, 2009

SQOTD

"Mama, when I am all grown up like you mama, can I stay up as late as
I want? Please? Please?"
~ I didn't have the heart to tell him he won't
need my permission when he's all grown up.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

SQOTD

"Mama, do you want to be the red commode or the blue commode?"

~ trying to ask me which race car I wanted to be, a red one or a blue one... I have no idea how he got the idea they were called "commode".

Sunday, October 04, 2009

SQOTD

"If you get a shock, that means you have to have a baby".


Who knew it was so easy?

Sunday, September 27, 2009

SQOTD

"Mommy, your heart goes boom-boom, like it's on fire".
~ after I told him I love him with all my heart.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

SQOTD

As we were driving home this afternoon I noticed that Squink had
sunshine on his face... So, I asked if he wanted to wear my
sunglasses... He said:
"Yes mommy, because something hot is touching my eyeballs".

Monday, September 21, 2009

Friday, September 11, 2009

SQOTD

"My hands asked me to spill".
~ after spilling some soda pop on his shirt

Euclid's Window

Euclid's Window : The Story of Geometry from Parallel Lines to Hyperspace Euclid's Window : The Story of Geometry from Parallel Lines to Hyperspace by Leonard Mlodinow


My rating: 5 of 5 stars
I loved this book, I loved it so very much!
I loved that it was a history of geometry and how it affected our world from ancient times to M-theory... and I was finally able to understand the theory of relativity as fully as my feeble brain can manage, for the very first time.

View all my reviews >>

Friday, August 28, 2009

To compliment the book I am reading on Euclidian Geometry

It was published in 1961, and is something I am really looking forward
to reading!

How much do you think might be considered "wrong" by todays standards?

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

SQOTD

"Mom, I have to think at home. I mean really, really, really, really
think".

Tuesday, August 04, 2009

So, do I have any regrets?

Recently I proposed a notion on facebook that I could be asked any question... my exact wording was:
One question, one chance, one honest answer. You can ask me one question (TO MY INBOX ONLY!). Any question, anything, no matter how crazy, dirty or wrong it is. No catch. I dare you to post this on your status and see what people ask you...


I received a very fabulous and thought provoking question in my inbox from a friend.

What is your biggest regret?


Below is my reply:

OK, to be very honest I had a quick answer, the kind that is slightly reactionary, but that answer was, in its essence, a quick and situation specific yes.

But, after that momentary reaction, I thought that regrets come in many packages and that it is probably related the stages to Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, and possibly in my case the revised one that includes transcendence. So, as I strived to answer this question I looked at that as a way to put out how I don’t think I really have any true regrets, but may wish that I knew the possibility of certain things with different outcomes (wistfulness), and, all this while not really minding that they didn’t (perhaps, even, preferring that they didn’t ) come to a different conclusion.

At the base of the triangle of needs is Physiological, which I understand to be those basic needs all humans (all animals perhaps) have. Here, there are no regrets unless it is in a manner of perspective that I often forget to be extremely grateful that I have these needs met and am lucky enough to claim that this is the case for my entire life.

The next step up is Safety. Again, if I have regrets here it is in my failure to be grateful for the abundance I have in a world where this is not the case. When you see starving children in the streets of any country, be it third world or first world, you can understand how fortunate one is who is lucky enough to have this meet.

The place where I may claim to have any regrets, which is not based in a failure of being sufficiently grateful, starts at the level of Belonging. I regret being unkind to people, I regret not kissing some boys in my youth who I thought were too intimidated to kiss me, I regret not being more gracious to the underdogs, I regret things that are simple like this… but I think that these things are a part of human nature… and thus not something that I can consider to be truly regrettable (though perhaps it makes me wistful).

When we move to Esteem, the considerations of regrets moves on to more personal things; like taking cruel and ridiculous things people have said to me too much to heart… again though, this is something that forms my personality in terms of wanting to be kinder and gentler with my fellow humans.

When we move on to the next level of needs, Self-Actualization, I have no regrets. Though I will say that my acknowledgment of my very own tendency to judge others has been a tough pill to swallow. At the same token, this is a quality I often notice immediately and I can, therefore, curb that tendency and that is something I don't think is regretable.

Maslow, later, added Transcendence to his hierarchy of needs. I include this in my reply in part because of the nature of my relationship to the person who asked me this question as well as my own personal preference. I find that if I do have regrets here is that I most often choose to live in rational thought. But, if one sees transcendence as the act of being (our animating force if you will indulge this term) rather than merely that which can be called the divine... then I have none... I am in a process, things I may have something akin to regret is not essentially over, until I, my physical body, passes on (as to the possibility of a where is a whole different discussion I will not enter into here). I was tempted to go into some major philosophical thoughts here, but that was starting to deviate from what I saw as an answer to the original question.

But after examining my self in terms of having any regrets, I can say not really... but I will say that there are things I am wistful about... but the future holds so much for me that who knows if they may be actualized or if I find (as I have in many cases) that living with the wistful moment is part of the beauty life has to offer.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

SQOTD

"We are going to crash into the dark". As we head into the
underground parking garage.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Monday, July 13, 2009

Queen of the Night


Queen of the Night, originally uploaded by John Groseclose.

Aside from being one of my favorite Aria's from the Magic Flute, this is a lovely picture of a flower bearing the same name.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

The Shoes of Happiness, and Other Poems (1913)

By Edwin Markham


  • He drew a circle that shut me out —
    Heretic, rebel, a thing to flout.
    But Love and I had the wit to win:
    We drew a circle that took him in.

Saturday, June 27, 2009

SQOTD : Pizza

Me: "Squink, you fell asleep eating your pizza last night".

Squink: "You mean I can't have it anymore?".

Friday, June 12, 2009

OHQOTD

"So the difference between crème brûlée and flan is that one is
crispy on the bottom?"
~ a group of ladies who lunch

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

Friday, May 29, 2009

SQOTD

"Even if you use the power it's not enough"


(Sleep taking - & further evidence he is my child)

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Monday, May 25, 2009

The George and Crash

That last image is from a better book, but it still is not all that pleasant to read.

But, this post is about my lovely new partitioned external drive... one, George, is for my backups while the other, Crash, is for the minutiae of my life (think image storage). I like the way they sound together... I tend to name most of my electronic equipment George (think DVR, Computer, iPod) so when I had to have another name for my drives... Crash came to mind and I am thinking they sound like an English pub... which puts me in the mind for some hard cider.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

SQOTD

Squink was such a goofball this morning.

He said" I want to get a cheese tortilla roll-up...may be we can sit down at the jingle bell [Taco Bell] place, I don't want to eat it in the car...I want four - two for now and two for school".

Thursday, April 09, 2009

Messiah: A Novel Messiah: A Novel by Andrei Codrescu


My review


rating: 3 of 5 stars
I can't get over how the jacket picture nowhere near fit the image of Andrei I had in my head based on the essays he reads on NPR.
The story will twist your brain as to how you have perceived any versions of the rapture or the coming of a messiah... it is hard to swallow and yet very revealing on so many ways about perceptions in our current culture...
I also get the feeling he tries the Eco route of obscure sources of knowledge, and doesn't quite make it.


View all my reviews.

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Sarahs Zimmer by Maurice Sendak and Doris Orgel, a childhood book that is fondly remembered

My mother bought me this book so that I could practice my ability to read in German. I was approximately 9 or so and we bought it at my most favorite bookstore ever, Libri Mundi, in Quito.

The thing that I loved about this story, aside from its glorious black and white illustrations, is that it was about a little girl who puts a bolt lock on her door and how it changes the way she relates to her surroundings. I used to think I was that little girl, learning a lesson on the pages of a book. I still have that book somewhere, packed in boxes of books from long ago... but it is a book I have treasured.

I have only been able to find it on the Amazon.com site for Germany and I forgot to see if I could find it when I was last in Austria.

It is funny that the books I most fondly recall from my childhood are due to its illustrations... another being D'Aulaires' Book of Greek Myths.

Friday, March 27, 2009

My first job: Volunteer

I translated at a university based children's clinic while I was in high school, this was really a favor for a friend of my mothers.
I kept doing it on occasion through my first few years of college and was hired by them.
It was awesome because not only did I get full benefits but my tuition was only $25 a semester.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Friday, March 20, 2009

Squink QOTD

"Momma, you have red cracks on your eyes".

I guess they must be a little bloodshot today.

Saturday, February 28, 2009

Squink QOTD

"I am just coughing in my lips".
(as I told him to cover his mouth).


Sent from my iPhone

Friday, February 20, 2009

Hungarian memories are bittersweet

Cherry blossoms that covered the road I walked with my dear friend as she told me about her mothers illness and the problems in her marriage. I scooped them up and put them in a book because they were so glorious as they blew and frolicked in the wind, like a pink fall of snow brushing against the cobbled Hungarian street.
Her mother, an equally kind and generous woman, passed away and her marriage ended.

Thursday, February 05, 2009

A visit to the Queen Creek Olive Mill for Blake Makes Food Chain

So, here it is, my final version of my trip to the olive mill.

I sent an email asking if I could go there and do a film when I first heard I would be getting a camera and I did not hear back... I figured that they either did not get my email (think spam folder) or they were just to busy to reply. But I figured that this is some publicity and no one would ever say no to something like this... even in home video format!
I have been to this place once before and was so impressed by the facility... it has a great place for kids to run and play, it is outdoors, it has a restaurant and a store... it is my favorite kind of place to visit.

That and I love olive oil, a lot!

To say that I was not nervous would be an out and out lie... but I have made a promise to myself that these are the kind of challenges I would totally take on! After all, I don't want to be an old lady and end up saying "why didn't I do that video for olive oil"? If that happened, well, that would make me sad...

So, when Blake of BlakeMakes issued his invite to join the FoodChain... I had to say yes! I have loved his amazing ideas, he makes the most awesome dulce de leche (though I have been tempted to send him some of mine). He loves food, and has incredible and enviable marketing skills... I am a fan!

So, the camera arrived and I had to go out the next day and film as it would have been my only opportunity to do so for over a week.

Lesson learned though; do NOT drink a whole carafe of coffee (even if you are nervous) before going out to film with a hand held camera. Not to forget to mention that you should not drink that much coffee the first time you are using said camera! (that is a warning that I am a bit shaky in my filming).

In the end though, I had fun and have become addicted to the thought of doing this! What a marvelous thing technology is.. and for those considering buying the iFlip all I can say is GO FOR IT! it is an awesome and easy videoing machine!

So, from my Arizona home to yours, wherever it may be, I present my shaky, slightly informative and interesting tour of the Queen Creek Olive Mill!



A visit to the Queen Creek Olive Mill for Blake Makes Food Chain from Blair Necessities on Vimeo.

Sunday, February 01, 2009

Food Chain for BlakeMakes.com

Blake Killian of Blake Makes has had the most awesome idea of a food chain. I have been a follower since almost his very first post and have reviewed products for him... so, in the spirit of things, I signed up to help out with this project.

Last Monday, I was told my camera would be in the mail and to let him know when it arrived. By Friday I had yet to get it so I dropped him a note letting him know it had not arrived! Lo and behold, the minute I sent it my doorbell rang and there stood a delivery person with the sweet little box in hand! Isn't that how so many things in life work?

I immediately emailed him and let him know it had arrived. It was just too funny, If I had nt been so worried that it had gotten lost and waited until the next day, I could have avoided worrying him about it! Sorry about that Blake!

One of our tasks is to post about getting the box so look at these pictures; it was so very exciting and so very intimidating since I had no idea what I was getting myself into...
I had to repeatedly tell my son he could not pop the bubble wrap...

I sure like handsome packaging...

O. M. G!!!!!!!!!! I got the black one!!! I am not sure why I was so excited about this, it is so pretty though!

And look at how pretty it is...

And the powers of USB never cease to amaze me.

And here is the back.... wow.

And here is my teaser... here is the iFlip in the field!


I can't wait to show you what I did!

Blake was so on top of things that it was almost like he anticipated when I would have a question and he would show up in an email or in Google talk! I am so very impressed with this effort and I am thrilled I get to watch it all in leisure with my part behind me! Thanks for allowing me to be a part of this! I can't wait to see what other folks will do!

Operation Civil Disobediance, redux

For reasons that are hard to explain but are probably mainly related to ancestor worship, one of the two churches I I go to is the church in town that my family helped found (they were missionaries here before AZ was even a state) (I also go to Mass on Sundays, but that is a whole 'nother story).

The church is Presbyterian and has always served snacks after service and before Sunday school classes.

One of the members works with the homeless and many folks that attend service come through her efforts.

I think it can go without saying that the homeless attendees partook of the snacks, and did not attend Sunday School but most did, in fact, attend service.

I myself partook of snacks, and did not go to Sunday school (two church services is enough in my mind, plus I tend to ask questions that rock peoples world and have found it much better to leave those who have a better time with the concept of faith to do what they need to, while my skepticism on many of those things is probably best done in my own head or with others who can understand the root of my questions)...

anyway, (religious matters are so hard to write about)

The pastor and some of the elders decided that snacks were no longer going to be served to them, as the snack would be moved to those going to Sunday school only. Now, you may not know this but Presbyterians are really democratic and actually have voting sessions about certain issues affecting the congregation... so there is a spirit of a democratic process that, in my opinion, was skipped.

So, I went out and bought snacks and served them during the social time, without asking. The selfish side of me also did this because the social time was important to me, it was a chance to talk to the fellow parishioners in a friendly way, to reconnect and to catch up (I have only been going back about a year).

It was a bit controversial, the pastor is never present at the social time so I feel like he made a choice that may have been based on the complaints of a few. During my sponsored snack time, everyone ate working, with a home, members as well as the homeless...

and as I did this that verse from Mathew chapter 25 (I think it is 40) about doing to the least of God's brethren is to do it to him...

Act 2, was doing it again this Sunday. There is a whole bunch more stuff going on here, a real dislike for our downtown homeless population... it all just sorta makes me sick to my stomach. I am waiting for the repercussions and based on what I have seen, I don't think they will be pretty and I am worried that I may have picked the wrong battle.

The church often appears to be dying, what with the loss of denominations as having any import and some choices that I think will cause churches to suffer in the long run. But, who am I to speak, I have a global relationship with a higher power, I think extremism in anything (communism, capitalism, Christianity, ad infinitum) is a problem and I have always supported the idea of organized religion; even those whose ideas I strongly disagree with... but this, my simple act of feeding people, is about all of us being equal.

Sunday, January 04, 2009

Snowball Fight

We took Squink up to the snow and taught him to make snowballs and snowmen.



Snowball, originally uploaded by ckschweiger.


Saturday, January 03, 2009

Touching Snow for the First Time

Overheard

While Squink was sleeping I heard him say "Mom, put my skin on".

Shortly after that, he sleep laughed.

Sent from my iPhone