Am I forgetting anything?

Shirts (long/short), skirts, tights, jeans, underclothes, cardigan, shoes, jewelry, and socks.

Makeup and remover and fiber and deodorant and pills and retainer and camera and hair goo.

Pajamas and book (The Elegance of the Hedgehog and Shirley Jackson) and iPod and yarn (with patterns) and travel notebook (with pens).

Almonds and coffee.

Ziploc bags.

(Lines three and four are the most important to me.)

Enjoy your week!

(I’ve scheduled a post to go up all by itself on Tuesday, and am wondering if that sort of thing actually works. Apologies for leaving you in Suspense.) ‘ ‘ ‘text/javascript’>

I’m now taking a probiotic pill, so there’s that!

This morning I remembered that I’ve been meaning to check in on Fluid Pudding. So, hello there! The past week has been insanely hectic, but I can’t really name more than five things that we’ve done. (Such is the life of the sporadic freelancer/perky homemaker I suppose. Jeff returns from work in the evening, and I often cannot report on any sort of progress that I’ve made during the past nine hours. Perhaps I should start charting my input and output. I really do need to drink more. I sometimes have pillow creases that last until the evening hours!) ((Note: Jeff doesn’t really ask me to report on progress. I’m not sure how I would respond if he did.))

Speaking of Jeff, it seems that his job leads him out of town every year over the Memorial Day weekend. It all has to do with a human anatomy and physiology symposium (this particular one was in  Denver), and if I wasn’t completely secure in our relationship, I might suspect that “human anatomy and physiology symposium” is a pretty clever way of saying “out of town tail” but deep down I know better. (I’m the perfect blend of lovely and psychotic. No one in their right mind would ever stray.) Anyway, this symposium forced me to single parent once again, and that experience never fails to lift me toward a new level of appreciation for those who single parent every day. I wish I could buy each and every one of you a funnel cake.

Let’s see. Harper and Meredith had their yearly examination at the doctor’s office this afternoon, and Harper received what we like to call her kindergarten shot, which is the simpleton way of saying she is now immunized against Diphtheria, Tetanus, Pertussis, and Polio. (Oh, Pertussis. You are definitely not welcome around here.) And I know how controversial this sort of thing is, so I’ll now point my finger in the other direction and scream, “Hey! We’re leaving to go on vacation in a little over a week!” AND, someone will actually be staying at our house during that time, meaning I really should do something about the 84 baskets of laundry that have been sitting around in the front room for the past several months. (Believe me, my intentions are always good. It’s just that I’m often L to the AZY. That hairball thing has been growing in the shower for weeks.)

Anyway: Vacation. I’m very pleased to report that we’ll be heading out to Jackson Hole, Wyoming in about ten days. And wait a second. Do you remember a few paragraphs up how I sort of complained that Jeff has a job that sometimes takes him out of town? Well, because he’s sort of good at his job, he was recently given the Editor of the Year award, which included this very vacation. Seriously. L to the AZY is sort of schmooing into L to the UCKY. (Clarification: I’m the lucky one. Jeff totally earned this gig.)

What else? I’ll tell you what else! I purchased three skeins of laceweight merino a few nights back. I haven’t purchased yarn in months, but as soon as I saw the phrase “1,312 yards” coupled with “$16.00” and “Fleece Artist”, I couldn’t resist. And while we’re sort of on the topic of yarn, this morning I fell in love with a yarn store in London that isn’t yet open, but will be in a few weeks. Anyway. Are you still with me?

We’ve been doing an awful lot of this lately:


I hope you are the same.

Fluid Pudding has Smoothie Moves! Come over here to watch the video and earn a chance to win a $50 Visa gift card from BlogHer! ‘ ‘ ‘text/javascript’>

Despite the hiccups, we fluttered.

This morning Harper and I put on our glad rags and headed to the Butterfly House where we took about fifty photographs of butterflies eating rotten bananas, landing on top of each other, doing what butterflies do, etc.

When we got home, my computer decided it would no longer communicate with the camera, and the memory card within the camera decided it would only retain seventeen of the photos we had taken.

Toni at Creve Coeur Camera saved the day by recovering those seventeen photos (and one video!) onto a CD for us. (We then reformatted the memory card, and all is well. I’m boring you so much right now. Do you want to hear about my new eyebrow gel? I bought it with Blackbird in mind, and now my brows look much less anemic. Sleep tight, my friends. I’m eating Ritz crackers.)

Anyway, here is my favorite photo of the day.

The Oldest and The Youngest

I’m wearing a penguin necklace! Harper is wearing one, too! AND, according to Harper, when we both wear our penguin necklaces, we’re BFFs!

The video is worth the cost of file recovery. (Which was five dollars, if you’re keeping track of my expenses.)

Aren’t you glad I went with Paganini instead of Butterfly Kisses?

I need to tell you a weird story about my milk man. (I now have a milk man.) Meet me here next week?

I’m drinking lots of juice and diving into the Tropicana Juicy Rewards Program. (AND giving away a $50 Visa gift card!) You can follow along right here! ‘ ‘ ‘text/javascript’>

Orange is the new orange.

As  you know, I’ve posted videos of me stuffing marshmallows into my face, writing Happy Easter across my face (video removed until next year due to copyright mumbo jumbo), eating yogurt, welcoming you into a day in the life, etc.
I was not the least bit self-conscious about any of those things.
Why am I squirming right now at the thought of sharing a photo of my feet?


Okay, now, stop looking at them.

I went with this color, and finished the look with this shade on my hands.
And I almost kicked my nail professional in the head when she thought it would be cute to tickle my feet.
(As if I wasn’t feeling all weirded out to begin with. Yeesh.)

Last night while the girls were singing, I finished this:

I started this shawl on the Sunday before Easter when it occurred to me that I needed a shawl to wear with my Easter dress.
I busted my knitter’s butt on that thing until just a few days before Easter when I realized that I had returned my Easter dress to the store several weeks ago.
(I blame all synapse misfires on my children.)
Anyway, after taking a break long enough to snort some ginkgo biloba and figure out what I was going to wear on Easter, I decided to finish the shawl—because the last thing I need around here is another unfinished project.

I need to figure out why the characters from Glee make me cry.
You wouldn’t think that a happy interview on Oprah would destroy me.
But it did. The kids and the singing and the hard work and the hope and my lip quivers and engages my tear ducts and suddenly I’m a disaster.

It’s 54 degrees out, and I’m wearing sandals.
I concocted a Pop-Tarts recipe, and now I’m giving away a $100 Visa gift card! Follow this link if you’re interested!

I’m drinking lots of juice and diving into the Tropicana Juicy Rewards Program. (AND giving away a $50 Visa gift card!) You can follow along right here! ‘ ‘ ‘text/javascript’>

This post may put 84% of you to sleep.

Last year I was typing away on a Fluid Pudding post, and when I went to save it, I received an error message. I hit the back button, cut and pasted my entire entry into my e-mail, and then entered it again paragraph by paragraph at the website. (I’m boring you! Please stick with me!) After nearly an hour of fiddling, I discovered that the word that bummed WordPress out was Nebraska. When I saved that entire entry WITHOUT the word Nebraska, it saved with no problem. When I re-entered Nebraska, all hell broke loose.

(When I was a freshman in college, Marching Mizzou traveled to Nebraska for a game. I had been sold as a slave for that weekend (which sounds so horribly inappropriate now, but back then it was just a part of Homecoming Spirit Week), which means I had to carry a woman named Gennifer’s luggage up to her hotel room. My ankle blew out when I stepped into a pot hole in the parking lot, and was sprained so badly that I couldn’t march at the Holiday Parade a few weeks later. I was in an air cast for six weeks, which allowed me to stir up quite a bit of pity during my freshman piano jury. I now feel like I’m sitting on my couch reminiscing with a group of people who really couldn’t care less. Back to the story, which should certainly get better sometime soon, don’t you think?)

I wrote a product review late last week, and that whole stinkin’ Nebraska thing happened again! (The error thing. Not the ankle thing.) The review contains two links. And those two links are non-negotiable. They HAVE to appear in the review. HOWEVER, when I added either of the links, WordPress was giving me the error message again. I did the paragraph by paragraph thing. No luck. I tried to back door the links, which is a fancy way of saying “I typed them in instead of cutting and pasting them.” (I’m a technological wizard, you know.) No luck. I was at the end of my rope last night when Jeff said, “Why don’t you put the links in FIRST?” The entry worked with nothing but the links. (Maybe JEFF is the wizard.)

I then pasted the review in and removed each sentence one by one until I found the culprit.

Get this. The following sentence (which appeared in parentheses on the review) was not allowed by WordPress to appear on a page with the links:

I come with a pretty hefty supply of Christmas tunes.

Because I have lots of Christmas music and I don’t mind talking about it, I’ve been blackballed by WordPress. And I would approach WordPress with this issue to ask what’s going on, but I lack the energy and the vocabulary. I’m bored, too!

Because you tend to stick with me, here is a video of my kids singing Rudolph during the return trip from Indianapolis to St. Louis.

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If I get that van back, man, the road I’m gonna burn!

Just a few quick things:

As you read this, we’re actually on the way to Indianapolis! We all have fresh haircuts, and my mom has given me one of those huge plastic cups from Starbucks. In other words, as these very words travel from your eyes to your brain, I’m most likely sitting in the passenger seat nursing a very large shaken iced tea lemonade and listening to The Squeakquel. And I think to myself, what a wonderful world.

I need to send a very special shout out to someone with the initials AMR. You shocked the heck out of me when I picked up my mail yesterday, and I’m so very grateful. (I don’t have your e-mail address, or I would have done this privately.) I skied for over an hour last night! And you’re the only person out there who has any idea what I’m talking about!

My family baked cookies a few weeks back, and now I’m giving away a $100 Visa gift card as well as a bag of Hershey’s Candy Cane Kisses! (The gift card winner is random. The Kisses? I’m totally choosing who gets them.)

Watch out Indianapolis. Here come The Puddings! (While we’re gone, please enjoy our favorite online advent calendar!) ‘ ‘ ‘text/javascript’>

We spent 2.5 hours unwinding a skein of Bambino!

This afternoon I went to the Rock-n-Roll Craft Show with Chris and Kym.

After the show, we went to Pi.

After Pi, we went to Knitty Couture.

Perfect day.

And now I’m just trying to figure out if I should have my hair all cut off again, or if I should continue to let it grow.

(I’m not purposefully letting it grow—it’s just that I haven’t had a haircut in over two months, so growing has happened.)

((My hair normally looks something like this. Sadly, right now it looks like I’m wearing a very awkward helmet, and I’m actually having to use a blow dryer, which makes me feel a bit too bothered. PLUS, we’re going out of town next weekend, and I really don’t feel like dealing with electronic hair equipment. Also, I really love Alice’s hair.))

I would create a Grow or No Grow poll, but I lack the energy. Oh, man! Tomorrow is the final day of NaBloPoMo! Is there anything you needed from me before I go? ‘ ‘ ‘text/javascript’>

Personified Candy Canes: Erratic or Erotic?

Last night, nine of us journeyed out to a local light display, where we boarded a train and marveled at millions of lights.

PLEASE NOTE: This light display is in St. Louis, Missouri. Although it may share a name with a truly fantastic display across the ocean, I can firmly say that the two events are not related. (I just spent thirty minutes looking at the photos of the other display, and suddenly I want to board a plane and go. Absolutely lovely.)

ONE MORE NOTE: This entry is not intended to disrespect the local display. We loved it, and were merely “in a mood” while riding the train. Our kids are still talking about how much fun they had. We will most definitely be returning.

Most of our journey looked a lot like this:

And this:

And that’s sort of what you expect when you go on a “millions of lights” adventure, right?

However, we also saw a little bit of this:

My 12-year-old Nephew (M12YON): For some reason, that makes me feel a little uncomfortable.

Me: Is it because he looks like he’s been poked in the privates by a big toasted marshmallow skewer?

M12YON: Is this journey Rated R?

We continued to ride.


My Sister: Whoa! Hey there!

Jeff: Someone’s hanging low!

That’s all it took for the seven of us (the girls retained their delightful innocence) to see past the magic (and tune in to our inner Porky’s).

We were now taking a ride on the Lickerish Express.

(Please know that all inappropriatisms (and that is NOT a real word) were kept under our breath. The Puddings are very considerate of others when they spew dirt.)


M12YON: What is that down by his leg?

Me: You know how candy canes roll. As soon as the lights go out, they get all junkie.

M12YON: I don’t like the look on his face.

Meredith: His arm is going the wrong way! Wheeee!

Regardless of (and perhaps because of) the Candy Porn, The Puddings are now fully dipped in the Christmas Spirit.

We’re in. ‘ ‘ ‘text/javascript’>

NaBloPoMo: Kicking it Real.

According to my calendar, this week we’ll see the frost moon, a day to vote, and Roy Roger’s birthday.

Last night found the girls dressed up exactly as they were for last week’s Trunk or Treat minus the rain plus the pink hair.

Ready to Roll!

The night before last saw us posing to show off my recently completed February Lady. (And yes. Harper had whiskers. Actually, she still does! They’re very faint. Don’t mention them to her unless you want to see her explode.)

"Hey, (February) Laydeeee!"

Today? A late brunch with my road trip posse and an appointment to see a store about some yarn. I have been told that all my cousin wants for Christmas—all he has EVER wanted—is a pair of hand-knit socks. Hand-knit socks for his Size 13 feet. I need to see what I can do about that.

Good morning, NaBloPoMo. ‘ ‘ ‘text/javascript’>

You ain’t a beauty, but hey, you’re alright.

Bruce Springsteen was in town last night, and I have a friend who works for him. (And I wish the friend lived closer than she does, because I do believe we’re quite compatible in the Hanging Out While Knitting and Drinking Coffee department—which is one of my very favorite departments.) I met her for the first time last year when Mr. Springsteen was in town, and she completely floored us by giving us total VIP treatment.

When we arrived at the Scottrade Center for last night’s show, I couldn’t get past Security because I had brought a gift for my friend and a knitted hat for Mr. Springsteen. When I called her to explain the situation and apologize for the inconvenience, she quickly rescued us and took us backstage where (are you ready for this?!) we stood outside Mr. Springsteen’s dressing room and heard him yell, “Hey, Lady!” when one of his staff members entered. Also? I stood less than twenty feet away from Roy Bittan and Max Weinberg as they ate chicken skewers. I watched Steven van Zandt contemplate dinner options. We passed Nils Lofgren (and Tony La Russa) in the hall. Did I mention the chicken skewer thing?! (Seriously. That was a high point.)

When I worked at the hospital as a bagger of the dead, I would occasionally turn my badge over and wrap a stethoscope around my neck for the walk down to the cafeteria. I found that people respected the stethoscope more than the Unit Secretary badge, and they would often clear the way for me as I returned to the SICU with milk and Kit Kat in hand. Since leaving the hospital, I haven’t really had the chance to duplicate that feeling of power I experienced while wearing the stethoscope around my neck, until last night when I had this on my chest:
When we took our place in the pit, I caught at least a dozen people staring at my chest (that NEVER happens) and then whispering for their friends to stare at my chest. This badge quickly became my Bruce Springsteen Stethoscope.

Highlights of my night: Watching Mr. Springsteen playing piano and singing “For You.” (I’ll update to the St. Louis video if it becomes available. It was absolutely perfect.) Getting a quick visit in with my friend. The chicken skewer thing.  “She’s the One” (my favorite Springsteen tune).

Highlight of Jeff’s night: Being part of Mr. Springsteen’s crowd surfing moment during “Hungry Heart.” He was able to grab a leg o’ Bruce, and when I asked if it was muscular, he smiled and answered, “It was strong.”

When the show ended, we walked back to our car in the parking garage and found that our battery was dead. We called AAA and they weren’t able to get to us until over an hour after the final car had left the garage. AND, they were unable to get their truck to us because of the low ceilings in the garage. SO, the AAA guy had to walk his big battery thing up five flights of steps to help us out. (Thanks, Jake from AAA!) In other words, I’m now working from four hours of sleep, but I have absolutely zero complaints, for I saw Roy Bittan eat chicken, and the only thighs Jeff has touched in the past decade or more belong to me and Mr. Bruce Springsteen.

(I’ve received word that my hat made it onto Mr. Springsteen’s flight last night from St. Louis to Kansas City. This news will keep me smiling for at least 37 days.)

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