Friday, November 30, 2007
So many to choose
they are all so beautiful
we love to collect
Menorahs each year
we purchase or are given
to us for our gifts
We spin the dreidel
the kids love to collect gelt
eat the chocolate ones
this year our latkes
will be made from the box mix
taste as good as scratch
we are counting down
till we light the first candle
and watch their beauty
See more Hanukkah Countdown festivities here:
Thursday, November 29, 2007
Do you ever wonder how some popular catch phrases came to be? I do all the time, so here's a list of 13 ones that I always wondered about.
1. Bought the farm - It comes from W.W.I. When a US soldier was killed in combat his family was given a "death benefit" that amounted to a enough money to buy a parcel of farm land in the mid west.
2. Close but no cigar - Carnival games of skill, particularly shooting games, once gave out cigars as a prize. A contestant that did not quite hit the target was close, but did not get a cigar.
3. Let the cat out of the bag - At medieval markets, unscrupulous traders would display a pig for sale. However, the pig was always given to the customer in a bag, with strict instructions not to open the bag until they were some way away. The trader would hand the customer a bag containing something that wriggled, and it was only later that the buyer would find he'd been conned when he opened the bag to reveal that it contained a cat, not a pig. Therefore, "letting the cat out of the bag" revealed the secret of the con trick.
4. Crocodile Tears - It was often thought that crocodiles shed tears that slid down into their mouths, moistening their food and making it easier for them to swallow. Hence the tears appear to be an expression of emotion but are in fact a means to make it easier to swallow (possibly the observer).
5. Don't look a gift horse in the mouth - Horses have gum lines that recede with age. Hence older horses have longer teeth than young horses. To "look a horse in the mouth" is to examine the horse's mouth closely to determine its age (and therefore its usefulness and/or worth). To immediately judge a gift based on its worth or usefulness rather than the "thought" behind it considered rude, and ungrateful (it is a gift after all, and didn't cost the receiver anything).
6. Pissing and moaning - Gonorrhea is common venereal disease that causes a burning sensation while urinating. There are plenty of stories and jokes about the "clap", as it is called, and moaning from the pain caused by the burn. (nice one, huh?)
7. Raining cats and dogs - When the bubonic plague was rampant in London, humans where apparently not the only victims of the plague. Cats and dogs were also afflicted, many died in the streets. After a particularly hard rain, street gutters could be awash in the bodies of cats and dogs. (another nice one)
8. Eating Crow - An article published in the Atlanta Constitution in 1888 claims that, towards the end of the war of 1812, an American went hunting and by accident crossed behind the British lines, where he shot a crow. He was caught by a British officer who, complimenting him on his fine shooting, persuaded him to hand over his gun. This officer then leveled his gun and said that as a punishment the American must take a bite of the crow. The American obeyed, but when the British officer returned his gun he took his revenge by making him eat the rest of the bird.
9. Flying by the seat of your pants - Before airplanes had sophisticated instruments and flight control systems, and even today, planes are piloted by feel. Pilots can feel the reactions of the plane in response to their actions at the controls. Being the largest point of contact between pilot and plane, most of the feel or feedback comes through the seat of the pants.
10. Pass the buck - Some card games use a marker called a buck. Players take turns acting as dealer with the buck marking the current dealer. When the buck is passed to the next player, the responsibility for dealing is passed. Spawned the phrase "The buck stops here" popularized by President Harry Truman.
11. Cold enough to freeze the balls off a brass monkey - In the 1700s cannon balls and black powder were carried by boys referred to as "powder monkeys". One explanation has it that the balls were stacked in the familiar pyramid configuration with a wooden triangle holding the bottom layer together. These wooden triangles (perhaps as an extension of powder monkey) were also referred to as "monkeys". The trouble with wooden monkeys was that they couldn't take much abuse before shattering under the impact of dropped cannon balls.
12. Bang for the buck - This phrase originates in Cold War deliberations concerning funding new weapons. For example, the US Air Force habitually claimed that ballistic missiles such as ICBM's could do more damage to an enemy country for a given expenditure than a Navy aircraft carrier could.
13. Kick the bucket - Pigs to be slaughtered are bled, that is the blood is drained from the body. One way this is accomplished is to hang the pig upside down from a bar (by one foot) that used to be known as a "buchet," a French word for it. The pig's throat was cut or opened with a sharp spike (See "bleed like a stuck pig"), and it would rapidly be bled. In its death throes, it would always, always kick the buchet.
Wednesday, November 28, 2007
The Hanukkah countdown has officially started! Just this morning, Mr Z was counting the days until next Tuesday which is the official beginning of the holiday. Over the weekend we cracked out the toys and they took turns showing me how to light the candles (well, Ms V tried to eat the candles instead). We are so excited to play dreidel games and have latkes (which we sampled some of last week with left over potatoes - yummy). I have much work to do to get ready, lots of wrapping and more decorating. Planning a meal for our annual Hanukkah party, which last year we made fresh sufganiyot, man were they yummy!! And Mr. Z made his very first Menorah at Hebrew School last week that he will bring home on Sunday. We are officially excited.
Join us in the Hanukkah Countdown with Ima off and on the Bima!
Tuesday, November 27, 2007
Saturday, November 24, 2007
Thursday, November 22, 2007
2. Children in 1600s New England had to work hard. Their chores included: fetching water from the brook or springs, gathering firewood, herding animals, gathering berries and other wild plants, and helping their parents cook, clean, preserve food, plant and harvest crops, and care for younger children.
3. Even though Pilgrim children worked very hard, they still had time to play. They probably played marbles, ball games, board games and running games.
4. Children were expected to show courtesy to adults, including their parents, by bowing and curtsying to them.
5. Both boys and girls in 1600s England and New England wore gowns (dresses) until they were about seven years old.
6. The Pilgrims did not have buckles on their clothing, shoes, or hats. Buckles did not come into fashion until the late 1600s--more appropriate for the Salem Witchcraft trials time period than for the Pilgrims time period.
7. There was no school in the early years of New Plymouth. Parents who wanted their children to learn to read and write taught them themselves or had their children taught by neighbors.
8. Children often slept on mattresses that were laid on the floor at night. The mattresses were usually stuffed with straw. Some children slept in their parents' bed.9. Children and adults probably only took baths a few times a year. They thought bathing was unhealthy.
10. The First Thanksgiving lasted for three days. According to Edward Winslow, a participant in the First Thanksgiving, the feast consisted of: Corn, Barley, Fowl including Wild Turkeys and Waterfowl & Venison.
11. 52 Pilgrims attended the 'First Thanksgiving' in 1621 and approximately 50 Native Americans attended the 'First Thanksgiving'.
12. Even before Mayflower anchored off the tip of Cape Cod, there was a near mutiny. The passengers had hired themselves out as indentured servants, promising to work for seven years to pay for their passage. Some of these passengers thought they could do as they pleased since they were outside the bounds of English law. So they threatened to take their freedom as soon as they got on land.
13. In their first ten months at Plymouth, just passed, they had erected seven dwellings, a Common Meeting house and three small store houses for food, clothing and other supplies. In spite of their numbers having been cut in half by sickness and death, they found reasons for thankfulness. They had gained their foot-hold on the edge of an inhospitable continent. They were well recovered in health and strength. They were making the best of a hard life in the wilderness. They had proved that they could sustain themselves in the new, free land. They were assured of the success of their purpose of establishing freedom. They had made firm friends with the Indians, who had been so kind to them.
Wednesday, November 21, 2007
Tuesday, November 20, 2007
My baby is 6 months old already. Wow, that was fast. We took her in to the pedi yesterday for her checkup. We were somewhat worried that they would make us come back to complete the rest of the exam since she has been sick with a cold for a few days. But we take her in, get her measurements - 14 lbs 12 oz, 25 3/4" which I think equates to 25% and 50% (but mommy brain kicked in and forgot to ask). We filled in the developmental questions - she is sitting on her own for more than 20 seconds...check. She is picking up small objects...check. She is babbling many new sounds...check. She is crawling...check (wait I don't remember that being on the paper). So basically, she is doing real well in the overall developmental department. Then we get to meet with a new Dr who, we realize after the appointment was all over, we like her the most out of any of the Dr's in this practice, which we have contemplated leaving multiple times. Anyway, first thing first, a listen to the chest. She gets a concerned look on her face when she listens to my baby wheeze and cough some due to above mentioned cold. We move on to other things, like her eczema on her face and what treatments we've been using, which happen to be an Rx cream another Dr in this practice recommended. Of course this Dr debunked it and gave us something new. She also told us to watch for flare-ups around her mouth when she is getting a cold, which was new info. So then we get back to the sick baby. The Dr said she didn't want to use the word pneumonia cause she would scare us, but that was her diagnosis. Great, 10 day round of antibiotics which Miss V totally hates. Like strapping her down, squeezing the dropper in her mouth, blow in her face, hates. Oh Joy. But while that diagnosis doesn't scare me, per se, it does make me wonder two things. 1. Does the Dr think I was ignoring her cold symptoms for weeks before I brought her in here, cause that clearly wasn't the case. But more importantly, 2. are we headed down a very familiar path here? I recall a time with my son who was 6 months old at the time, caught his first cold and we noticed was struggling to take breaths. Granted it wasn't the dreaded 'pn' word but it was 'reactive airway disease' better known as asthma, except to label him asthmatic at such a young age will prevent him from getting good life insurance later on, so asthma remains on the back-burner. But after that first diagnosis of 'RAD' we spent the next 3 years fighting with Dr's to get him better treatments: from nebulizers, to inhalers with spacers to three different pulmonologists to finally convincing someone that the real crux of the problem was large Tonsils and Adenoids which we finally removed and Mr Z became a different kid. Granted he still gets colds and on occasion need some breathing meds to help him heal faster (at least I think they are working - maybe he doesn't need them at all anymore) but the T&A was so worth it for him. Now back to Miss V, yes we have tons of experience in the arena of 'RAD' and her breathing wasn't labored so I chalked it up to the common cold (and proceeded to not give her any of those over the counter cold remedies that they ripped off the shelves last month). So I didn't expect pneumonia. Scared...not right now. She will take her meds and be fine in a few days. But, am I now worried I have a long 3 year road ahead of me?....damn skippy!
Happy 6 month Bday, Miss V!
Monday, November 19, 2007
Oh where oh where could it be? I swear old age is setting in sooner that I'd hoped. Its pretty scary how much stuff I seem to forget over the course of a day, not to mention a week. I used to be so on top of my game. I never forgot anything. I was able to focus on conversations and recall them hours/days/years later. However, not so much now. I realize I am getting older and have lots on my plate with work, kids, school (when the stupid college offers classes each semester that I still need to take - separate rant), home, but when will it start to get better and I will feel in control again? When I get more sleep? When my kids get older? Never?? Take yesterday for example. We knew we had to go to Z's Hebrew school class for parent's day. We lined up babysitters (grandma) to watch the girls so we can devote 2 hours just to Z. We get there on time and proceed to take our seats in the back of the room and observe. Other kids/parents started bringing in non-perishable foods to donate for Thanksgiving to the local nursing homes in the area. The light bulb goes off....Hubby and I look at each other and whisper "SHIT" and "Whoops" and "oh well". Man how bad do we look now sitting in the classroom with nothing to offer. I search back through the spiderweb covered memory banks and vaguely recall seeing some sort of note...wait email...wait was it a discussion, about bringing in food this week. Crap I cannot remember where I read or heard that, man it was a whole week ago for goodness sake! But this isn't new. I forget Z's snack at school at least once a week. I forget to send back his library books or poems to school (among all of the other mounds of paperwork I need to sign and retain that gets sent home every day). I forget to send in food for E's party at her day care for Thanksgiving, even though we signed up for rice crispy treats, bought them and then proceed to leave them in our pantry cause we didn't remember which day the party was. We forgot to go to parent's day at the Elem school or know which day is Pizza and PJs day at the day care. We haven't remembered to give V her acid reflux meds in- I don't know how long, luckily she seems as though she is growing out of needing them. Not to mention all the personal stuff I want to remember, bring lunch to work, bring pictures for my desk, why did I walk into the basement, did I reply to my friend's email, walking out of the store with nothing from my list cause I left it at home and why I am standing in the family room surrounded by talking kids wondering what they are asking me to do. And don't even get me started or remembering all the goings on at work (like where we ate the last time we traveled or who works for whom or what pieces of equipment are called). Does it get better or worse from here? Should I start taking those memory enhancing supplements? Go see a Dr and get evaluated for Alzheimer's? I don't want to remember everything, all the time, but it would be nice to get through my day and not wonder what I forgot to do. Maybe it all comes down to more sleep - the answer to everything, more.sleep.
Saturday, November 17, 2007
Friday, November 16, 2007
Winter is here now
don't like the cold much at all
been spoiled with warmth
Layers and jackets
We are uncomfortable
in the car each day
I hear we could have
more snow than the past two years
I hope its not true
Thursday, November 15, 2007
Wednesday, November 14, 2007
2. Emerson, Lake and Palmer.
3. Michael Bolton.
4. Kenny G
8. Vanilla Ice.
9. Lee Greenwood.
10. Air Supply.
11. Latoya Jackson.
12. Tin Machine.
13. Mick Jagger (solo).
OK so most of these on this list do/did suck but I admit, some of them I did listen to in the day.
Saturday, November 10, 2007
I took a few clips of the kids being kids. This is my first attempt at making a collaboration video with iMovie.
Friday, November 9, 2007
Thursday, November 8, 2007
2. Work - always gets in the way. :)
3. Spending time with my kids.
4. Sleep, even though I don't get enough as is.
5. Doing homework with my son.
6. Fitting in time to see my parents.
7. Making dinner (or getting take out). Its amazing how much deciding on dinner can take up so much time.
8. Working on digital scrapbooking.
9. Taking photos of my kids (and anything else that will sit still).
10. Reading (haha, like I have time for that).
11. Leaving time in the evenings to spend with Hubby in front of the Tivo.
12. Traffic and long commuting (could blog in the car during that time while hubby is driving but usually I am too tired, see #4).
13. Getting the kids ready for school/lunches/snacks/paperwork.
Wednesday, November 7, 2007
Saturday, November 3, 2007
Yup, Miss V has her first tooth. I just noticed it yesterday. The other one should be in any minute now. She's no longer a toothless baby. :(
Friday, November 2, 2007
This is my record collection. Yup, I said records! Albums, to be played on a turn table (that we currently don't even have set up in my house).
And here are two of my favs. I have two copies of The Beatles White Album. One is an original pressing on Apple Records and the other when Capitol bought out Apple and made one on White Vinyl. I have only played them once.
I hear you calling
ever so loudly my name
taunting and mocking
How ever will I
resist the temptation of
Coming from the bowl
instructing me to partake
in so much candy
So you hush down now
that evil candy stockpile
cause I can't resist!
Thursday, November 1, 2007
Thirteen things I want to remember about the Fall of 2007.
2. Miss E is a little Diva who loves her dress up and baby dolls.
3. Miss V just started sleeping through the night (knock wood loudly) at 5mo 2weeks.
4. Mr. Z is all about computer games, Webkinz (Tiger) and wants a Wii for Hanukkah.
5. Miss E is extremely smart. She speaks in full paragraphs and has very good pronunciation. She also has that 2-year-old independence and has to do everything herself.
6. Miss V just started (on 10/27) army crawling on her elbows, dragging her belly toward anything she wants to put in her mouth. She is a strong girl who is grabbing everything and anything she can reach. Her favorite toys are the Baby Einstein teether, her exersaucer, her Jolly Jumper and anything else she can get to her mouth.
7. Mr. Z loves to go camping and meeting new people on the playground. He is totally not shy and will go up to anyone and ask to be their friend.
8. Miss E loves having an older brother to play with and a younger sister to take care of. E refers to her sister as 'my baby'. She loves Little Einsteins, Dora, Leap Pad and cooking in her kitchen.
9. Miss V just started baby food. At 5mo 1week she was given some oatmeal which she seemed to love. This week, (5mo 3 weeks) we plan to start orange veggies (sweet potato). Her two bottom teeth can be seen just below the gum line and I expect them to break through any day now.
10. Mr Z is doing well with reading. He can read many words in his 1st stage books and is eager to learn how to read 'chapter books'. He also loves word games and word searches when we go out to dinners.
11. Miss E loves to sing and dance. Her favorite songs are Baa Baa Black Sheep, ABCs, twinkle twinkle and she loves to dance to any music her brother will play for her (mostly John Michael Montgomery) and her favorite CD Dog Train from Kohl's Cares for Kids.
12. Miss V is wearing mostly 3-6 or 6 month clothes. She is starting to make new babbles - Dadadadada and Mmmmmmm and Babababa and Brrrraaaaaa and she loves to screech when she is happy. She loves to giggle when you tickle her under her chin and on her thighs and when her brother is acting real silly. Her favorite time of the day is bath time with her siblings.
13. I mostly want to remember that while these times with three little ones is very hard, tiring and stressful, that they won't always be this little. I want to remember how smart, passionate, energetic and sensitive my Mr Z is. I want to remember how beautiful, smart, stubborn and independent my Miss E is. And I want to remember how cuddly, strong, vocal and giggly my Miss V is (now that she is feeling better from the acid reflux she had two months ago).