Thursday, June 29, 2006

Victoria's Secret is not my friend

... because I HATE the way they put life-sized soft porn pictures right there in the middle of the mall. I also don't really like their stuff.

But the breastfeeding community needs to get a grip: they are organizing a nationwide nurse-in in response to two stupid employee mistakes for which Victoria's Secret has officially apologized.

I wrote the organizers this, but I doubt it will matter:

I just wanted to remind you that there already IS a law protecting both of those women; a STATE law, which is where this issue should be handled, and which is now on the books in nearly every state. Harassing business owners no matter how mistaken they may have been, is not the way to gain support for your (already legally protected) rights.

I'm a nursing mom, too, and am all about rights for breastfeeding moms. However, I was surprised and disappointed that the moms in this story would ask to occupy a dressing room to breastfeed. Why could they not feed their children in the store? In one of the stories it sounded like the manager was hassling them for that- obviously illegal and rude behavior on VS's part for which the apology was well deserved. However, I don't think breastfeeding gives a mom the right to take up a dressing room (or restaurant booth for that matter) with no intention of buying anything. Victoria's Secret is almost always in a mall, where there is likely to be a bench provided.

If this nurse-in is truly about the desire for a change in legislation, why not take it to legislators rather than to employees of an unrelated business? If it is about educating business owners about breastfeeding rights, again, that's a matter of government business- not a job for a lingerie shop.

I would have joined you if the logic behind this were clear. Please reconsider your tactics and adjust them to match your desired outcome.

Hi! My name is Miriam/Tobias.

I was getting such lovely ego stroking from those comments, I just couldn't bring myself to put up another post and watch it slither down the page into obscurity.

Tobias and I have successfully insinuated ourselves in the library Book Babies mama clique. As a matter of fact, we instigated a post-class coffee time all on our own, and amassed a large and diverse group. Most of these insurgents were new to the Hillsdale BB, two of them were even male which made us all chatty and broke the Us vs. Them spell. Plus, to a guy I am apparently an expert even when their child's older. They asked ME questions!!

I really thought this whole bitchy mom syndrome was something made up by writers without enough drama in their lives. And I think for the most part it's not entirely real deep. The problem is that I have been assuming that just because I have one thing in common with these women they would become Friendly. I forgot that these were the same people I went to high school with, lived in dorms with, flipped off on the highway (mentally, of course). Just because we are all formerly pregnant and desparate for outings doesn't mean we will bond efficently.

One of them, whom I have dubbed the Head Vampire, has created a calendar of things to do on nearly every weekday of every month. I was informed about but not let in on said schedule. She is actually the sportiest of the sporty moms and when I asked her a mommy question she all but rolled her eyes. Her kid was biting her shoulder while simultaneously pulling her hair and pinching her boob, so it didn't really bother me at the time. Whatev. She's probably peachy but I'm feeling a bit skittish lately in regard to the momfriends.

Getting in the Jeep and BBBRRRRRRRR-ing away with my radio lover is helpful, though. Twelve, 12! presets are not enough for you, oh Sirius my sweet sweetness. If only you had a baby and liked coffee dates.

Saturday, June 24, 2006

Day at the Beach

His Tobiasness's first solid food? Sand!

Today was warm and beautiful. We drove to the coast and talked all day, about building friendships from scratch, mommy cliques, idiot drivers, Sirius radio (my new lover) and dream homes. Oh, and beer, oysters & sunscreen. I love the Oregon coast.

The water was still bone-hurting cold but the air was hot so we braved it for a bit. Every time I leaned down to let Toby's feet dangle in the water he retracted them indignantly and became very quiet. Please don't do that again, harlot.

He giggled, caterwalled, and crowed like he does at dinner. We were seated outside at a pub and no one seemed to mind- luckily even his Pete Townshend shrieks (one of his favorite skills) weren't given the evil eye.

I love this pic because it makes me look skinnier than I am. I'll have to tip that photographer extra...

Friday, June 23, 2006


What Toby's doing right NOW!

The paper boy

Tobias has just started really digging books. Of course he makes the odd attempt to injest them solely to retain membership in his age group, but I feel certain it's a much deeper connection for him.

Here he is perusing the Portland Japanese culture paper while we were waiting for seats at a Kaiten-zushi place over on the east side. That's the kind of sushi restaurant where the food goes around on a little conveyer belt and the plates are colored according to price. The chefs stand in the middle of this and between you and them is an endless stream of yummyness. Toby appreciates the poetry of movement and was thus lost in thought as he surveyed the (future) options. In other words, he completely zoned, watching chopped fishies go by... and by... and by.

Thursday, June 22, 2006


I am a ridiculous wuss.

The lump is appreciably smaller.

Plus, it turns out my Grandma (yes, the other borderline hypo) also had this when she was nursing.

So, there's this little paper cut on my right middle finger. It came from the thick aluminum-paper on the top of a bottle of wine and it's right in the fleshy part.

When will it end?

Keep Portland Wierd

That's a popular bumper sticker 'round here.

In the last day I've seen two men working hard to do just that. Each was waiting at a bus stop in nice neighborhoods on busy streets.

The first was doin' a dance, with a long flowy fabric thingy over most of his head. He appeared to be wearing both jeans and a burka-esque dealy. The dance involved lots of emu movements and his hands dangling down from flailing wrists over his head. I gave him a happy little honk.

The second had his shirt on a freshly plucked tree branch slung over his continental shoulder. I think it was a Huck Finn reference. Very PDX.

Do you think they just sat, docile, on the bus when it came? Wonder if the drivers even blinked.

Keep it up, boys.

Monday, June 19, 2006

Go Away, Lumplestiltskin

I've never really lived under a specter before. Yesterday we drove by a billboard for OHSU Cancer care and laughed uneasily, checking to see that we were each thinking what we thought we were thinking.

It's nothing, I'm sure. It's just that it's still there, I feel it all the time now because it freaks me out and it's hard to ignore. J thinks we should do whatever it takes to relieve ourselves. Screw the food allergies theory of breastfeeding. Toby could get them anyway, or he could be fine. Then again, when you're trying to tra-la-la along believing it's nothing... who wants to start in with the procedures?

For now we'll do as we're told and come back in a month, maybe ask about that new boob-specific MRI thingamabob but if you notice me catastrophizing when there are folks with actual problems, smack me quick and take away my Jeep keys. I really do not make a good patient. My grandma's the same way- she thinks and talks about her physical state obsessively, God love her. At least she has things going on for sure.

It's probably just the lawyers. They tell their Docs to hedge bets and blanket their patients in just-checkings. Dang lawyers, every one of 'em. Sexy beasts.

Sunday, June 18, 2006

jeep jeep jeep jeep jEEEp

Happy Father's Day, my hands-down hottest muffin of studliness.

You really didn't have to buy a Jeep Liberty Diesel just to show me how you feel. It does make a nice gesture, though. If you're real nice I might even show you how to program the radio.

I love this car already. It's sort of a dark bluish green, and it makes me feel pretty tall, and it purrs and hums with a big-truck sound. And it's a DEEZLE. So y'know, gas mileage. Loooove. But really, the Brrrrrrrrrrrrr of it. Especially when you pull up to order a blended coffee and it echoes back off the brick building. Sweeter than the caramel we all know and love.

This is gonna be hard to top- for a first Father's Day, we did it up right.

Friday, June 16, 2006


So it's not anything scary! Yet. I thought the doc was going to stop after, "We think it's just a cluster of milk ducts," but no. She had to tell me to come back in a month, and list some nasty possible futures including biopsies, excisements, words ending in -oma. But mostly they think it's nothing. Damn, that was reassuring.

I can't wait to go back and get the same slightly molester-y middle aged technician, Gary, who told me he knows all about lactating boobs because of the goats he raises and milks. His favorite slogan is Our Feta's Mo Bettah! which made me smile politely despite the tiniest urge to slap him. I wanted to bolt out of there, blue goo dripping in a Gretel trail after me down the hall. Did I want him to sexualize me more? Less?

I sort of pitied the two other women I saw waiting, you know, because I can't have anything cancerous; it's Not In My Family. Running those pink-ribbon 5k's was my way of showing I cared, not joining any sisterhood crap.

It's (probably) good news. I've been stomping around all night- it clearly should have been "Silly you, you're breasts are not only cancer-free, they are the finest evidence of divine motherhood we have yet to witness. Would you like to lecture to our interns?"

Thursday, June 15, 2006

Every Kiss begins with Kay.

I got a wedding band that sparkles! SPARKles. It's for mother's day, our anniversary and for the fun fun feeling you get from impulse buying. I had a perfectly fine plain band, but always did want one with diamonds set in. Actually, they could have been glass as long as they sparkled. It has 12 stones and it was cheaper than I'da thought- about what that crib is at Target. Sorry, kid- Mommy's busy getting blingy.

A prong bent on my wedding ring. I swear I didn't know a trip to the mall jewelers would be so profitable for me. Had I known, I would have gotten out the pliers loooong ago, baby. Shiny.

You could pray for me for tomorrow. I have an ultrasound of my left boob for a lump there. Probably nothing scary, though J told me all the possible outcomes just so I could mull them over... and over... and over. Good thing I only have to think about it for one night, anyway. Maybe it's a pity ring. I'll take it.

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

No worse than a papercut.

He cried for about ten minutes, warbled his new raptor song a few more and then was out. He has not been swaddled since, and barring any strange inclinations or incarcerations he probably never will. I told my friend Jen that our bedtime ritual consists of changing him, fondling a book and plopping him in bed to fall asleep and she broke up with me. We made up over spit-up stories and a little breastfeeding party in the middle of the mall.

Before you throw things at me for getting out of any real parenting by having the easiest kid in the universe, let me just say we screamed a blue streak much of the way home from Seattle last night. Nothing like a crying jag in a small car so loud and long he's still hoarse. I fed him. I cleaned him. I swore a little and at one point shifted the beleaguered Hondamobile so hard I took a little core sample out of my arm with the straw sticking out of my drink holder. Just another one of those moments I'm so glad there's no hidden camera. Too bad there's that whole omniscient God thing, but at least He's also infinitely prepared for my goofiness.

I've been a little teary lately. Simon had to go to the cardiologist (I know, it's crazy, buy what can I do- he's my dog), my house still feels un-home to me, and I haven't been working out enough to stay happy.

Thursday, June 08, 2006

Swaddlers Anonymous

So if you don't hear from me for a while it may be that I have hopped in the car and driven to Nantucket to escape the Kid Who Wouldn't Sleep. He's just too big for the swaddle and he likes access to his fingers and he wouldn't stay asleep tonight after going down easy like he usually does. He was making this pathetic grunty noise while writhing like a mental case in a straight jacket, and I just couldn't do it one minute longer.

Be afraid.


I was transported back to junior high today. It was mostly my fault- I wore impractical shoes with a flouncy skirt to a baby Story Time at the library where everyone else got the memo to dress as Sports Mom. So there's Linda-Hamilton-Arms sitting across from me while Teensy-Gymnast and Olympic-Runner-Tracksuit-Mom struck up a conversation about the pleasures of a child who can sit up. Every single child (no kidding) was wearing Robeez shoes for kids, except Tobias who was displaying his bare foot Montanan roots.

It's all about the shoes, see. I had too much, he too little.

The sing-songy library instructor lady came over to chat with me (Pity pity pity) at least three separate times. It was bad.

I'm going back, though- Toby seemed to like it. He even shared a block with Teensy-Gymnast's little girl, handing it back and forth. That kind of genius can't be ignored. I'll have to suit up next time. I just can't decide if I want to be Spinning-Class-Butt or Sleek-Swimmer-Torso mom. Wonder if they'll go for Former-Gym-Regular-with-a-Brownie-Habit?

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Verizon Unlimited Plan: $75, On-Call Grandparents: Priceless

So what would it cost to hire a service to:

1. babysit for 7 hours on last-minute notice
2. mow the lawn
3. chop out bunches of blackberry vine from the spider-infested steps up to our door
4. deliver a mountain of fresh-cut peonies WITH a vase
5. make a mechanic house-call to diagnose, purchase and replace two burnt headlights (Honda= 7, Us= 1)

My parents were generous before Tobias made the scene, but now they are unstoppable. If only we had grown us some littlins sooner.

Shall we even begin to describe our incredibly luxurious stay over MemDay weekend in Huntington Beach with the Jonathans? Can I just say, there is something positively sacred about room service when you have an infant? Not to mention beach access, hot tubs, drinks and meals beyond compare.

His unprecedented (and lets be honest- completely unanticipated) glory does make it somewhat easier to let them spoil us so spectacularly. Grazie!

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Fee Figh Foe Fum

The giant is sleeping.

Several times today I wondered what was giving me a headache, then realized he had been growling/whimpering/squirming for an hour straight. We infidels (the linoleum guy and me) made the mistake of interupting his sacred preparations for sleep, so he skipped that nap altogether. That always starts with smiles as he's freed from the bondage of his triple swaddle system but ends badly with teary-eyed writhing. The baby gets cranky, too.

By 2:30 he needed sleep like Kanye needs Jesus, and praise God he finally succumbed.

Days like this are tough because now is the time I should be practicing, reading, cleaning, whatever it is I think I can't do with the nipper around. The problem is that right about now I am wiped out. So then I'm tired AND vaguely guilt-ridden.

If only I had a Mercedes. And a cleaning service. And a nanny with a degree in massage therapy.

Bring out the bon-bons.

Monday, June 05, 2006

Yupping out.

We went to the gym tonight, ate sushi and wine for dinner and spent an evening ordering things from Amazon and watching Nature.

But I have a darker secret to reveal. We test drove a Mercedes last week. Somehow I find the prospect of driving one of those things profoundly embarassing. Silly. If we might someday afford it and J really likes that one, then why not? Part of me literally dreads being able to do it, because I will no longer have an excuse for J. (He'd buy me what I want anyway, but you know what I mean.)

It's not that I think I wouldn't get used to it. It's that I probably would. If we have 30,000 extra dollars floating around (the less expensive versions of this thing were 30,000 less) then I don't think we should be spending them on a label. German engineering my left butt cheek. I can't imagine a Honda/Acura/Toyota wouldn't keep up in that area.

The other day I told some one we really like a particular neighborhood in Portland and she said, Your husband's a lawyer- you can afford it!

This, besides being currently untrue, made me uneasy and proud simultaneously. His job is tedious, demands meticulous perfection & long unpredictable hours and we owe a lot of zeros in student loans, so it better pay well. But does that mean we're required to flaunt it? More to the point, will I be able to resist rampant materialism in the years to come, when we have paid away our debts and are bringing in enough money to show it off?

It's easy to be confident in the image you project when you know your means are average. I never really worried while I was in school about what my purchases said about my beliefs, because for the most part (scrumptious purebred dog excluded) I was kept reined in.

I think I had a form of superiority complex going that told me I was better for not spending on such "ugly" things. It was a point of personal pride that I could find the same style of clothes at the knock-off shops or even Goodwill. Pride, greed, averice, vice. I know what I'm capable of and like chocolate or cigarettes, it's just better I don't get started.

Sunday, June 04, 2006

Skip if you like- a post about TV shows.

Having done our bit for the worship team, eaten a lunch we didn't have to prepare and taken a short jaunt around a farmer's market, we came home for a bit of good old fashioned tv lounging.

There has been a whole lot of nothing on lately, so we settled for Honey, We're Killing the Kids. I will admit to enjoying other TLC shows where the absolutely ordinary is celebrated beyond all semblance of reason. Often the subpar is given wild, panty-throwing cheers for inching imperceptable toward satisfactory. Love it.

This show just lowered the bar. The premise is fine, but here's the problem: a grown man is given Mr. Mom duty. That's right- a man living in America in our day & age (Hey- what do you call this decade, the zeroes? Aughts?) can become so utterly out of touch with his LIFE that he will be applauded for staying in with the kids for ONE VERKLARTE NIGHT. What is that wife thinking, raising such a sloth for a husband????

I have to think that J would not let this happen to him. Can you imagine a dad not knowing what books his kids like read to them EVERY night? Even if he ain't doing the Goodnighting of Moons, still- wouldn't he overhear, maybe even join in the cuddle once in a blue one?

But wait- ignore all of that. A new show just came on- Welcome to Fatland- where a resort has made itself comfortable for the morbidly obese. The show focused on a woman who coaches fat confidence and has written several books encouraging people to be happy with themselves at any weight. Fat liberation.

Self confidence, self esteem- how much more blatantly could these things worshipped? At what point was a wrong turn taken such that a health threat as serious as overweight is a source of pride?! Isn't taking pride in something that harms you an unmistakeable sign of self hatred?

Either way, TLC should be called TSC- The Surface Channel.

The last show (because I want to go to the gym now) is The 627 Pound Woman. Ironic that we were proofing vacation photos of us in the ocean that actually made me cry to see my own flabulousity while watching this poor woman's struggle to "feel human again".

On the heels of Welcome to Fatland, this show seemed worthy of Nobel-level praise. I was completely hooked. I literally prayed that she would survive.

Just kidding with this pic. Fun with my swim skirt dealy- looks like a tumor.

The only swimsuit-at-the-beach photo I will be posting on the internet for a while. Wheeee- look at those waves!

Friday, June 02, 2006


Why, it's more thigh! More than the eye can behold in one go- you would need the Matrix camera trick to fully appreciate exactly what I have going on heeya.

So I've been considering adjusting my dietary intake. I considered it at Red Robin today with Tobias, where for some reason I thought I better order a substantial lunch because I was subjecting them (a family restaurant with kid's menu crayons) to... an infant! I considered it further when, approximately one hour after RR, I needed a frozen coffee drink buhbuhbuh bad. Tonight at the Rose Festival I considered selling one of Toby's limbs (don't worry, just an arm or something) if it would buy me an elephant ear since we had no cash and are too cheap to use ATMs with extortion fees included.

I am always hungry- not just snack hungry. Meal hungry. With a salad and a beer hungry.
And a bag of chips.

I have heard the whole breastfeeding reasoning, the 9 months on/off excuse. But dewd. A normal (FORMERLY pregnant) appetite does NOT encompass half a tray of Rice Krispy treats in a single sad sticky sitting.

Maybe I'll go back to writing down everything. Maybe I'll check out South Beach. All this thinking... I'm famished, and I have half a bag of marshmallows left.