Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Mr. Cool

Jack just found these sunglasses I bought for him last summer. I really loved them because they're so retro 70's and remind me of the super hip (at the time) ones my parents wore back in the day.

Jack wanted nothing to do with them when I first brought them home, but now he loves them. He wants to wear them everywhere.

I started to think that they may be channeling the 70's directly into Jack's brain when he other day at breakfast he was in his Superman pajamas wearing these, and pretending to run in slow motion like The Six Million Dollar Man. Oh, how I wished I had my camera, and when I tried to get him to do it again he refused. But I did get this shot, and I'm seriously starting to wonder if I'm cool enough to hang out with him.

Monday, March 30, 2009

Our Iibiza - Chapter 13: A Stairway To Heaven (With A Side Trip Through Hell)

We were so excited a couple of weeks ago when they were FINALLY going to put the floating staircase in our new house. It's the central architectural feature of the house, and we were a little apprehensive about how it would turn out. There's been a lot of babysitting involved with building the house since our contractor (and many of the sub-contractors) don't get modern homes. I was really excited when I initially saw the staircase; it turned out better than I had imagined it would, but then I saw they had done one of the details wrong. Here's a photo:

The railing was bolted onto the stringer, instead of being welded together as our plans stated. It was just one of about four things that haven't been done right, so we made them take it out and do it over. I just don't understand why our builder has such a hard time following our architect's plans, but we are pretty much having to check everything. Here's how the staircase looks now that it's been fixed:

Much cleaner and, hello, what the architect planned in the first place. They will be putting the wood treads on today, so I'll add a final photo once the staircase is complete. In the end, I think it's going to look great, and it will totally be worth the complaints and taking the time to do it right. On a more positive note, the fireplace looked AMAZING the first time around. Here's a photo:

I can't believe that in not too long I will get to live in this house instead of wasting all my time supervising our contractor. Steve and I often wonder what we will talk about once the house is finished, but I can't wait to have nothing to say to each other.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Patience Is (not) A Virtue (that I posses)

I just experienced one of the hardest parts of parenthood: watching your child struggling to do something you could easily do for them. Jack was getting in the bathtub and wanted to unbutton his shirt by himself. I anxiously watched, knowing it would take him about ten times as long as it would take me, but I held myself back (literally, I held my hands behind my back, that's how bad I am at this), and let him do it. This is not always the case in these situations, like when Max is tying his shoes in the morning and we are running late and I tell him I'll just do it today. But today, I did it right and saw how much Jack and I both learned from that five minute lesson. Hopefully next time Max is tying his shoes as we're trying to get out the door, I'll remember it.

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Another Sleepover

Friday night Max and Jack had friends sleep over again. It was a lot of fun without a lot of sleep. They all stayed up until 10 PM laughing and being silly, and then got up at 6 AM and had a big Ebelskiver & Bacon Breakfast, and then, to make them even more tired, Steve took them on a two mile hike around our house. Here's some photos:

The hike started with a scenic walk up the drainage canal...

...to the infamous rusty car.

Max has been learning about rulers at school, so he enlisted his friend to help him nail down the measurements of the rusty car. I'm sure we'll all rest better at night knowing exactly how big it is.

Needless to say, we were all exhausted, but at least we slept well on Saturday night.

Friday, March 27, 2009

I Am Happy!

When I see a drawing like this (by Max), I feel like I must be doing something right.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Peeling Garlic

Jack is always fascinated when I cook, and today I had to peel a bunch of garlic cloves for something I was making and he stopped right in the middle of his coloring and said "Mommy, I'm just going to watch you peel that garlic, okay?" Of course, that was fine with me. He thinks it's hilarious how I smash the cloves with my big chef's knife and then peel the skins off, so I asked him if he wanted to try. He was a quick study and couldn't wait to peel another clove after he was done with the first.

In all, he peeled four cloves of garlic for me, and I'm more than happy to put him to work. I secretly hope his love of cooking continues and he will join me in the kitchen as he gets older and share my love of all things culinary. Time will tell.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Yoga Practice

Lately I've been working on the yoga pose Bakasana, which I have never been able to do, probably because I'm scared of falling (literally) flat on my face. I've gotten close at the yoga studio, but since the floors there are hard laminate, I thought I'd try on the softer semi-shag carpet in our condo. Well, when I want to practice some yoga the kids want to practice too. They took a kids yoga class last summer and still have great memories of it. Of course, I had pictures of them from their class, but they were on the old hard drive, and well, we all know how that story ends. I am surprised at how much they remember from the class, and how much fun they have doing yoga (Amy, if you're reading this, you need to do another kid's yoga class this year).

I think they like the creativity of the poses and the fact that they can get their bodies into such crazy positions. I love it because they think I'm so good at it, and we all do it together.

Luckily, the other night Steve broke out the camera and took some photos of the boys (and me, which I did not approve of, by the way). Here's some of the best:

Max in a bind.

Jack loves yoga, and isn't afraid to fall.

Jack doing Eagle Pose, although the flapping wings are his own addition.


And no, we don't require that they wear matching outfits when they practice yoga. My OCD problem hasn't quite reached that level yet, and hopefully, with yoga, it never will.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

I Kill iPhones

Well, I have today received my third iPhone in three months. The last one only only made it just over a week before my MacCurse took effect (for anyone who may be wondering, if you get an error code 1013 when trying to restore you're iPhone, just save your time and make an appointment at the Genius Bar. Apparently Apple doesn't even know what this error code means, but hey, I got a new iPhone for spending almost two hours on the phone with an Apple Tech). I am now calling myself The iPhone Killer, Ghostface iPhone Killah, or Natural Born iPhone Killer. Take your pick, they all mean that my new iPhone's days are seriously numbered.

I hate to admit that I have yet to start backing up (I know, you're all gasping right now at my hypocrisy after this post), but after this last iPhone death I got off my butt and decided to buy a Time Capsule. And with my luck, it will be dead before I can actually back anything up on it. Oh, how I love technology.

Monday, March 23, 2009

It's A Thin Line Between Love And Hate: An Ode To My iPhone

Before reading this post, push play on the embedded video for an accompaniment to my new version of this Pretender's classic:

Its a thin line between love and hate
Its a thin line between love and hate

When I woke up this morning,
I picked up my iPhone
Checked my email, and took some photos,
And decided to sync it before I go,
What happened?
My screen goes blank and as I plug it in,
Wondering what that possibly could have been,
I said, Are you working?
Did you sync yet?
Let me try it again,
It couldn't be that
All the troubles I've been having
Makes me question my iPhone choice
When I woke up this morning,
I didn't give it a second thought

Its a thin line between love and hate
Its a thin line between love and hate
Its a thin line between love and hate

The sweetest phone in the world
Can be the meanest phone in the world
When it starts acting this way
It keeps ignoring me
And the screen is blank and quiet
I know that it holds so much magic inside
How could it really, really hurt me this way?

I sync again and nothing
I try to restore it while holding my head
In a state of shock
I think it might just be dead
I can't believe the iPhone
Would do something like this again, ha
I didn't think it had the nerve
But here I am, returning to the Genius Bar*
I guess crashes speak louder than words

Its a thin line between love and hate
Its a thin line between love and hate

You can't keep breaking my heart,
and think I'll sit back and enjoy it.
This Sad Mac is not a happy one.

Its a thin line between love and hate

* I think this might mean Sean and I are ready to take our relationship to the next level.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Privacy Issues

For some time now I've been realizing Max is growing up. Of course there's the facts that he's getting taller, bigger, and older that are dead giveaways, but lately he's been wanting his privacy. Wait, I thought you had to be like 14 before that became an issue, but I guess 6 is the new 14. It started when he wanted the bathroom door shut when using the toilet, and then the other night he smuggled a pen, paper, and tape into bed with him, and when I went into turn off their light, he had posted his feelings all over his and Jack's bunk bed:

Jack had to get in on the action too, and posted this one. He was so excited in the morning that he had written a letter "t". It looked like he had written the word tools, but when I asked him if that was it he said "No." I asked him what it said and he just shrugged. But he was excited about the "t":

So, I've started accepting that Max doesn't want to be with me all the time anymore. It's really good for both of us. I had just gotten used to the idea that my little Max was so grown up when I was out with Jack the other day and he had to use the bathroom. He's still mastering potty training, so I go into the stall with him in public restrooms to be of assistance. But this time when we got into the stall he sat down on the toilet, looked up at me, and said "Mommy, I need some privacy." I guess 3 is the new 6, and it won't be long until they never call or visit anymore.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Forcast Calls For Migraines

We had a storm roll in today, which for me can only mean one thing: migraine. I used to think people claiming they got migraines from the weather was a little psychosomatic, until I got one.

Luckily the storm is gone, but the migraine is lingering on in the form of knots in my back and neck. Unfortunately it's just part of being me.

Friday, March 20, 2009

A Day At The Zoo With Jack

If I'm completely honest, I really don't love taking the kids to the zoo. It probably has something to do with the fact that they either get bored or tired or its too crowded or its too hot. Often all the kids want to do is play on the playground rather than look at the animals, and I find myself asking why I paid the admission fee when I could have just taken them to the park.

Well, my visit to the zoo with Jack yesterday was nothing like my other experiences. It was a beautiful spring day with sunny, cool weather and no crowds. And Jack was totally into the animals, and the animals were totally doing their thing instead of sitting like lumps in their cages like they often do in the summer. We had such a good time, and Jack was totally into looking at the animals; I think we saw every single one. Here's some photos:

The monkeys were putting on a show everywhere we turned.

When do peacocks ever do this when you have a camera? Never. Except yesterday.

Jack loved the gorillas. One was drinking out of a big bucket and then dropped it and it rolled down the hill and woke up the other one sleeping by the wall. Jack thought it was hilarious, and we all thought it was hilarious when Jack reenacted the whole scenario at dinner.

Jack was able to get up close and personal with the giraffes. So much so, in fact, that he saw that the giraffes tongue is long enough to fit halfway up his nostril. What boy wouldn't love that?

Even the bats were awake and eating when we were there. Now, that's a great trip to the zoo.

And when we were done seeing every animal on display in the zoo, there was the carousel and the playground to add to the experience.

We had so much fun! Wish Max and Steve could have been with us.

After this great visit I finally get why people bring their kids to the zoo. Hopefully this wasn't a fluke, and we have a lot of great zoo visits in our future.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

If You Wondered Why I Haven't Posted Yet Today..

It's because I'm dealing with this...

...trying to choose an exterior color for our house. It's taking up a lot of brain cells.

Did I ever tell you I have a problem with commitment? You know, there's a reason I was almost 30 when I got married.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Watching Idol With A Six Year Old

I let Max stay up and watch American Idol with me last night because I feel like I never see him and he watched it a couple of times last year and totally loved it. I told him at the beginning of the show that he could choose one contenstant to vote for, and after each performance he said he liked that one the best. Then he began to see the dilemma. When I told him he could vote for more than one person, he felt much better. At the end of the show when they did the recap I told him to tell me who he wanted me to vote for and as the contestants went by he said "Yes, yes, yes, yes..." eleven times, so everyone got a vote. For me, it was a nice reminder to find the good in everyone (even that Megan Joy Corkrey who sounds like she's been sucking helium. Okay, so maybe I still have a lot to learn from Max).

How To Create Your Own Custom Blogger Template

So, I've had some questions on how to create a custom blogger template, and I got my tutorial from Blogger Buster. It's a super easy way to do it, and I learned a ton in the process. Click here for their tutorial. I had to make some minor tweaks to get mine to work just right, which may have something to do with the fact that I use a Mac and I suspect this tutorial was written for PC users, so if you have questions or can't get something to behave properly, let me know and I'll see if I have an answer for you. Enjoy!

Will Blog For Tile

Some things are just meant to be. Call it kismet, luck, or destiny, but, in my case, I call it good tile karma.

While on my quest for great tile a few months ago I wrote this post about modwalls, a great tile website I found through Google. A day later Rebecca, one of the co-founders and designers at modwalls, left this comment on my post (I've since forgiven her for calling me Rick). I was glad she liked what I said and I went ahead with my plans to use quite a few modwalls products in our new house.

But the plot thickened while I was perusing their site a couple of nights later. I saw they had a career section, and I clicked just to see what kind of cool jobs a cool website like this might be offering. There was a listing for guest bloggers, and I had an inkling that this just might be a match made in heaven.

So I contacted Rebecca, told her about "Our Ibiza", and asked if she would like me to do some blogs about building our new house and our modwalls experience. She was down with it, and then in checking out their blog I saw they were using a standard blogger template, so I threw in a template redesign to sweeten the deal for her. She loved the idea. So, now I'm kinda, sorta employed by this really cool website and will be writing posts about once a week through choosing, ordering, and installing our tile. Really, of all the tile options I looked into (and believe me, there were many) modwalls was the obvious choice. You can read the reasons why on my first post.

But just for you, my loyal readers, here's a sneak peek at some of their products we'll be using:

Cool orange (or Sherbet) ModDotz penny round tile for the kid's bathroom. I love these because they're at the same time retro and modern, and perfect for what I'm calling our Neo-Mid-Century house.

3 x 6 Lush Glass Subway Tile in Vapor. I love, love, love this tile, and it is really the perfect shade of blue. This will be going in our master bathroom and it will be straight set like in this photo from the modwalls portfolio:

ModRocks Denali Pebble Tile will also be going in the master bath, but I'll keep how we're using it a secret at this point. You'll just have to tune in to see how it works with the glass tile.

And for our powder room we're using 1/2 x 2 Lush glass tile in Moss. I love this color because it's modern and sleek but still has a lot of earthiness to it, so it will fit into the aesthetic of our house's surroundings.

But I have to admit that I really didn't know just how destined my relationship with modwalls was until I found Rebecca is also obsessed with Orla Kiely.

Like I said, some things are just meant to be.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Anybody Want A Lamp?

I've offered this to a few friends already, and no one was interested, but before I take it to the D.I., I thought I'd offer up this floor lamp to anyone who might be interested. I loved this in our historic house, but now that we're going ultra-modern I don't think it works anymore (but it does work). I bought it at D.I. about 15 years ago and loved, loved loved it. It has a solid brass base and glass shade. I think I paid $15, and it looked so great in our historic apartment. I hate to part with it, but I refuse to have it sit in my garage collecting dust. I've also decided to get rid of the boxes that have moved three or more time and are still taped up. I guess I should look in them to be sure I'm not throwing away any precious family heirlooms, but really, I think it's time.

Here's some more detail photos of the lamp:

If you're interested, let me know. If I don't hear anything in a week, it's back to the D.I. for this beauty.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

My Millionth Date With Steve

Well, maybe a million dates is pushing it, but sometimes it feels like a million years between dates for us. I loved our night out on Friday, and had to take some photos of our beautiful Thai food from Sawdee:

My favorite salad, Som Tum, or Green Papaya Salad. I love this stuff because it reminds me of a salad I used to get at our favorite Thai place in London, The Thai Pot. It has this crazy-good dressing and the green papaya tastes like nothing else I've ever had. One of the things I require Thai food to include is super fresh vegetables. This place surpasses my high standards, and they don't overcook the veggies, so they're amazing. Most Thai places don't even include this salad because it requries so many quality ingredients, so I was so happy to see that Sawdee does it. It comes with sticky rice which I mix together with it and it's so, so, so, so, good.

My favorite soup, Tom Kah Gai, which I'm guessing translates into Heroin Soup, because I am totally addicted to it. I've actually dreamed about this soup. That's when you know you've got a problem. I could drink a 32 ounce Big Gulp of the stuff (although it might be tough to get the mushrooms and chicken through the straw).

My favorite dish on the menu that night, and the Pad Thai wasn't too bad either.