Wednesday, November 11, 2009

several little known facts

It is one of my deepest and most fervent fanciful wishes to have a Smile Time Angel Puppet for my very own. Not Vampire Smile Time Angel, but Regular Smile Time Angel. I suspect that very few of you even know what a S.T.A.P is (though dear Shelly Overlook is a VERY likely person to know exactly what I'm talking about)--- but I'm not going to explain any more than that. Google, Wiki, whatever if you wish, but just know that I covet this particular Weird Object. I'm curious what your Fanciful Covet Object is. You know you have one. It is something for which you have a great desire, but absolutely no use for.

Chip has, on several occasions, attempted to obtain a Smile Time Angel Puppet for me. Because he is AWESOME and also knows me far better than I know myself. On each occasion, his attempts have been thwarted, whether it's because the seller sold it too quickly or it was the aforementioned Vampire version or it was eleventy trillion dollars and even a Fanciful Covet Object has a price limit.

I have an unholy number of books. There are several boxes of them, in fact, stored in our garage. Books that I can't seem to let go. I dream of having a house with a plentiful supply of bookshelves. When Chip asks me my dream square footage (I have a dream square footage number, don't you?), I quickly answer 2,200. It seems like the right number in which to hold several bookshelves. But, seeing as how we don't currently reside in my Dream Square Footage (and it's just fine, really), I have to be wily in my Book Storage Ways. So. We have three decently sized bookshelves. One in Bean's room. It holds my favorite fiction books. Once upon a time it was alphabetized but now I have them organized in there by size and Level of Prettiness. The Prettiest hardbound books are at the top, with the Less Pretty paperback books behind them (it's a really deep shelf). The bottom shelf of the bookcase holds several of Bean's board books and picture books. The second bookshelf lives in the master bedroom. It holds all of my poetry books and plays. Yes, I have an entire section of poetry books and drama. There is also a special shelf for Books In Current Rotation because I am clearly INSANE and am always reading several books at once. I used to keep the Books In Current Rotation on my wee bitty nightstand, but really that was impossible since the nightstand's surface area is smaller than the smallest of books. They ended up sort of living underneath and around the nightstand which was stupid. A bookcase was in order! So! Poetry books and plays toward the top (top two shelves), Books in Current Rotation on shelf number three, then shelves four and five are for Books I Can't Let Out of My Eyesight (books I love, books I look at A LOT even if they are not currently in rotation, books that I consider to be Very Close Friends and need them beside me). I know: INSANE. Anyway! The third bookshelf lives downstairs in the den. It holds instruction books (think gardening and old text books and a psychology book that Chip MUST keep because I think he wants to stay up late at night and diagnose my particular brand of Book Insanity). It also keeps our inspirational books and religious books together. Oh! And dictionaries! There are several dictionaries and thesauri (I have ALWAYS wanted to write a needful sentence with the word 'thesauri' in it and now I have... I feel AWESOME about that. And now so do you. Because you know all about my book storage system.

Speaking of books, I just finished reading Audrey Niffenegger's Her Fearful Symmetry. I absolutely LOVED Time Traveler's Wife and had high hopes for Her Fearful Symmetry. I'm not naive enough to expect a second book to be the same, exactly, but I do usually hope that we can expect a similar tone. And I didn't get that with this book. Where Time Traveler's Wife is extremely intimate, a very up-close-and-personal glimpse into characters that I have come to absolutely adore, Her Fearful Symmetry is a distant passing glance into several characters that I have a really difficult time relating to in any way. I'm curious if any of you read it and what you think. I just started my annual read of Lord of the Rings. I'm really late in starting - usually I start on or around September 22nd, since that's Bilbo and Frodo's birthday and it always seems right to start the book in the Fall. However, in September I was reading the latest installment of My Guilty Pleasure Series of Books (not to be discussed now, but at some future date, I promise, because it merits an entire post for itself). So. September I was reading mumblemumble and then I picked up Her Fearful Symmetry and just finished it a few days ago. Lord of the Rings is currently on the rotation (along with some non-fiction books). I'm keeping the Rotation shelf pretty much empty right now because there is a lot going on and not a lot of time for reading.

You know what there has been a lot of time for (or at least I'm making time for it)? Baking. And since Swistle asked, I will tell you some of my Baking Opinions. I will offer this disclaimer: I don't pride myself on being terribly vocal about any of my opinions, particularly when they are in the family of Controversial Opinions. And I think that food is one of those kinds of topics. So, um, there's that. I'm going to tell you what I do and what I think about what I do - but I sort of don't want to hear it if you don't agree... I guess you'll tell me anyway if you feel that strongly about it, but I wanted to put this out there anyway, just in case. KISSES! I do use Cricso, on occasion. And I know that some people feel VERY STRONGLY about Crisco. (See disclaimer and special request if you feel passionate about The Crisco.) Mostly I use it for my mom's chocolate chip cookies. They turn out better with the white stuff and that's just how it is. (They are seriously yummy.) However, since the whole Peanut Allergy Extravaganza, I haven't been doing much of anything with chocolate, which eliminates the cooking of mom's chocolate chip cookies. Primarily because only a very few (and VERY EXPENSIVE) chocolate chips are made in factories that don't also process our friend, the sneaky peanut. Not that I really let Alice EAT chocolate anyway, which I don't. I'm going to do some experimenting with other brands of chocolate (I used to use Nestle), but haven't yet decided to dip into our SAVINGS ACCOUNT to do so. In other cooking-related things, I'm only opinionated if it affects Bean's health--- so she only consumes organic milk (I worry about the hormone levels in non-organic milk), and mostly organic veggies if they don't cost the budget of a small country. As for baking pans and such, I use what works. Silpat mats for my baking sheets (LOVE), nut cups for my cupcakes (ALSO LOVE - and they're adorably cute), and parchment paper to line bread pands when I'm baking quickbreads (banana, pumpkin, etc.). I don't have many of the silicone baking contraptions because I haven't wanted to shell out the money for them, though I am always tempted by the rainbow selection of colors and shapes.

On children's names, there are a few that we're holding onto for possible future offspring, but there are some I can tell you that we didn't use with Alice and we most likely won't use in the future. Alice was thisclose to being named Brooklyn. We also didn't name her Violet or Grace or Audrey (Chip was in strong opposition). I absolutely opposed Allison and Megan. The boy name arena is a little trickier because we do plan to have at least one more kid, so we're holding some boy names very close to the chest. A few that I know will never be considered because Chip wasn't keen: Quinn, Angus, Gilbert.

I do put sugar on grapefruit halves. When I was little, the sugar was the only reason I even attempted to eat grapefruit. It was one of the only times my parents would let me just POUR sugar on something.

Though I own several pairs of glasses (like 5), I only ever wear one. Because the other pairs are the wrong prescription. I desperately NEED to get a new pair of glasses. I don't wear contacts because my eyeballs won't fit into them (astigmatism).

I vote scented soap and detergent, all the way. I tend to lean toward the fruity end of the Scent Spectrum. I'm crazy about scents, though I've had to seriously scale it back due to Bean's sensitive skin (I have to double-rinse ALL of our laundry or else she breaks out). On a side note, can I just say that I could swim in a POOL filled with Dreft and be perfectly content? As far as I'm concerned, Dreft smells like heaven.

So I guess that gets us started on the Wheel O Reader Questions. You guys rock. Thanks for playing. Hope I didn't bore you. More on the way.


sagessa said...

OMG! Not that you mentioned it, I too would love to have a Smile Time Angel Puppet. I love that episode!

So, I thought to myself, they can't be that expensive. I headed to eBay and... oh yes they can! Ack!

Hopefully Chip will stumble on one for you someday that costs less than a car payment. :)

sagessa said...

Oops... that should read "now" that you mentioned it.

Swistle said...

I LOVE Smile Time Angel! That episode was soooooo funny! I laughed and laughed and laughed, and paused it on a puppet view and laughed some more. His crabby puppet jaw! His overhanging puppet brow!

I tried a silicone muffin pan and didn't like it, but I tried silicone muffin CUPS and DO like them. (I prefer the paper baking cups, though. It's just that they went over my Willingness To Pay.)

Brooklyn! That's SO DIFFERENT than Alice! You have changed the whole route of your naming path! And OMG, it is JUST LIKE a boy to suggest names that were popular a generation ago. Paul suggested Wendy, Samantha, Tracy, Tara. I couldn't get Angus to fly here, either. I like it from the book Angus and the Ducks and the rest of that series, and I like the nickname Gus.

Anonymous said...

Not only do I know that ep, it's one of my favorites. I have the DVDs, of course, but this is an ep I have permanently saved on my Tivo in case I have a puppet emergency. The best line was Spike saying "Look at the wee little puppet man."

Can't wait to hear more answers!

wandering nana said...

I have to have sugar on my grapefruit. Okay, now I guess I need to figure out what the STAP is. You need to talk to the Mister about books. We moved over 25 boxes of books when we moved here and that was after I threw a fit that he get rid of some. I've tried to get him to agree to ... for every book you bring into the house you have to take 3 out. So far.... don't know how books have come in but I've only seen about 6 go out (and they were mine) "}

Alicia @ bethsix said...

Speaking of books, I have read EIGHT CHAPTERS of The Solace of Leaving Early. And when I am finished, oh, just you wait, Whimsy! You have no idea how I will TEAR UP the comment section from that post a couple months ago. Oh, just you wait, I say!

And I agree with Swistle on the children's names! Alice is so different than Brooklyn, on a totally different naming path! So glad you went with Alice! Such a classic, beautiful, strong name. I also really like Violet (a top contender every time we've had a child) and Quinn.

Alicia @ bethsix said...

P.S. When I said "tear up," I did not actually mean "tear up." Really, I meant I'd just say something. I haven't even looked at those comments yet because I didn't want any spoilers. That is all.

clueless but hopeful mama said...

Bless you for saving me from buying Her Fearful Symmetry. I LOVED The Time Traveler's Wife (So much so that upon finishing, I immediately reread it. I NEVER do that.) and was going to out and out BUY the book. HARDCOVER EVEN. But! I was saved! First by my extreme sloth lately! And then by you!