Insert Clever Title About Jello Molds, MacGyver and Naked Goat Dancing Here

So hey. I'm back. I don't know if you noticed or not from the weeks of silence followed by three posts in a row followed by more silence, but I'm trying to spend a little more time on the ol' blog here. Not sure how long this commitment to quantity will last, but at least you'll get to follow all the exciting and mind-blowing stuff happening here in the House of Quirk.

(That said, I've decided to package all this mind-blowing awesomeness in a list format so that you can absorb it in small doses. Don't want you to get an ice cream headache from all the excitement all at once, now do we?)

First of all, I've officially gone back to the gym. You might recall that I was a regular there pre-pregnancy, but what with the one kidney and tiny uterus and growing-a-new-human and all, the doctor suggested I not do anything high risk, such as walking fast or lifting heavy things or stepping on and off a step to music, so I had to put a temporary kibosh on the whole exercising thing. But! Fast forward 10 months and I am back, baby!

And boy does it hurt!

I knew I couldn't just pick back up where I left off after almost a year of couch-potatoness, but I was really hoping that there was still some muscle memory left. Alas, how soon muscles forget. And how vindictive and cranky they are when they figure out that yes, you want them to support the rest of you while you hover in a thigh-burning 90 degree squat for the next 15 seconds.

So the muscles are angry, but they're just going to have to get over it because there's nothing like marching on a little six inch high bench in time to music in front of a wall of mirrors to make you realize that since the baby did those unspeakable things to your body, parts of you that never jiggled before are certainly jiggling now. And unless you are one of those fruit filled jello creations that old ladies bring to church potlucks and funerals, jiggling is not good.

(I'm talking to you, thighs).

So to recap: jiggle=bad. Exercise= necessary evil. Fruit filled jello mold thingies= kinda scary.

Another thing that you could possibly care less about but that I am going to mention anyway is that Tony and I have just discovered that the entire MacGyver series is on Netflix Instant! And oh my goodness they are so bad they're wonderful! As soon as we found them we knew we'd have to watch every single episode, in order. We're still on the first season, which aired in 1985, so you can imagine the cornucopia of mullets and bad special effects and "computers" that are just giant gunmetal boxes with rows of random blinking lights on them. Oh, and I didn't realize this when I was seven and watching it the first time, but Mac was totally a player! Seems like every episode he saves some big-haired blond and she kisses him passionately. (Of course to be fair, dude did just disarm a nuclear warhead with a tic-tac, so I can see where women might assume that all of his other skill-sets were equally...ah, inventive.) Still, if you have the instant Netflix, you gotta watch old MacGyvers. Preferably while you're drunk or severely sleep deprived. You'll laugh your jiggly derriere off.

Finally, (because I really feel like this post needs a third thing, even though I doubt anyone has actually made it this far what with my sore muscles and tv watching habits being SO RIVETING AND ALL), you'll be pleased to know that ZB is doing just fine. She's hit the 3 month mark, which means that she's 1) working on her baby babble, which is adorable, and 2) drooling like a Saint Bernard, which is less so. We're also working on our daily routine, because BabyCenter (my go-to baby information website) says that babies need a consistent schedule so that when it comes times to nap or eat or poop they're not all like, "Whoa! Where did THAT come from?" (BabyCenter also says having a consistent daily routine will help ZB sleep through the night, and while I'm not quite sure about how consistently eating at 3pm helps mama get some zzzzzs, I'm just desperate enough to try it. Sleeping through the night is our holy grail, and if Babycenter said that me dancing naked on my roof with a goat would ensure a solid 8 hours of sleep, I'd be up there in a heartbeat with an entire herd). Actually, since we started this whole schedule thing our days have been a little more organized (for instance, I can tell you that she had exactly 15.8 oz of milk today and 6 wet and 2 poopie diapers) AND ZB has been sleeping a few minutes longer each night, so goooooo baby schedule! The only downside to it is that it requires a bit of record-keeping as to when the the above mentioned eating and sleeping and pooping occurs, and so far Tony has been remiss in recording pertinent information. (My part of the official record is documented minute by minute, while the three hour section that he watched her while I was at the gym just has the words "One Poop?" scribbled on a random scrap of paper. It appears that baby training is a lot easier than husband training).

So yeah...that's the inside look at out lifestyles of the rich and famous. Our evenings now mostly involve us sitting around on the couch watching a tv show from 1985 while Mama complains about her sore glutes and marks down the EXACT second the ZB takes a sip of milk or needs a diaper change. Not exactly world-changing, but I've seen reality shows with worse stuff.

Plus if you're really lucky and ZB has a couple of bad nights, there's a chance that whole naked-on-the-roof-with-goats thing will still happen. And what with the jiggle and all, there's no way you'd want to miss that.

One Score and Eleven Years Ago...'s my birthday today. Actually, mine and Tony's both. We're turning 31. He celebrated by going to work, and I am celebrating by pressure washing the siding on the house and then changing some poopie diapers. Later today we will meet up for a birthday celebration of signing the papers for refinancing the house.

Whoo-boy! Do we know how to party or what?

Remember when you looked forward to your birthday all year long? Remember when it meant cake and streamers and getting your name called out over the PA system at the skate center while they played the Happy Birthday song?

Or that pool party?

Or the giggling sleepover with pizza and sleeping bags in the living room floor?

What about the obligatory Chucky Cheese?

There's nothing quite like being a kid on your birthday. The siren call of too much sugar, a pile of presents, and 500 of your closest friends and classmates playing games and running amok. Birthdays were rivaled only by Christmas and the first day of summer as the best day of the entire year.

So why is it that adult birthdays are never as awesome as what they were when we were kids?

Actually, I can't really complain. While today might be a little humdrum, my extended family will get together this Sunday to celebrate Father's Day and all the June birthdays, including mine. We'll grill burgers and hot dogs, and buy funny birthday cards and pass them around so we can all laugh at the jokes. And I have it on good authority that my new favorite dessert, Chocolate Trifle, will be made. So as far as birthdays go, not bad.

I've heard that the tradition of birthday parties started in Europe because people thought that evil spirits were particularly active on the day of a person's birth. To combat this, friends and family would visit and bring small gifts and well wishes. Toss in some refined sugar and frosting, and viola! A birthday party!

I'm not sure if evil spirits are chased off by pressure washing and home refinancing, so maybe you should leave me birthday wishes, you know, just to be on the safe side. After all, you'd feel horrible if the evil spirits got me on my birthday, right?

Bonus points for singing the actual song.


ZB's baptism was a few weeks ago, but I'm just now getting around to organizing the pictures. I figured that if I was going through them on my online photo album, I might as well share a few.

It was a really great service. Family showed up from as far north as Chicago and as far south as Savannah to witness it. ZB wore the christening gown that my great-grandmother made roughly 60 years ago...the same one that my dad was christened in, as well as all of my uncles and cousins. It's gotten soft and thin from age and numerous washings, but it was neat having that kind of family history.

To augment the family christening gown, (which in addition to being white and fairly unadorned, was a little big on ZB and therefore looked like she was wearing a pillowcase) my mom made a satin and lace over-robe, bonnet, and matching blanket. All together, she was just lovely. (Plus she really enjoyed raising her legs and watching the fabric billow up around her-endless baby entertainment there).

ZB hadn't yet made it through an entire church service without needing feeling the need to express herself vocally, so we were a little nervous about sitting in the very front where we wouldn't be able to slip out easily, but it turned out that our fears were for naught. She was perfect the entire time. Even when the priest poured water on her head. Even when he marked her with oil. Even when everyone crowded around to take pictures afterwards. She was a trooper, and she handled it with grace and dignity. (Well, except for the very very end when we had a minor diaper explosion, but a little bleach in the pre-wash and that gown will live to see another 60 years).

Seester and her husband Stubby were the godparents, and they did a great job. They didn't even drop her or anything.

After the service, we all headed over to Mom and Dad's house (our house is too small for so many people) and had a fabulous barbecue lunch that I'm still dreaming about. (Seriously, we had various flavored trifle for dessert, and the other night I had a dream that I was eating chocolate trifle by the handful. That stuff was sooooo good! It is also a main reason why I'm not back down to my pre-pregnancy weight either).

So a good day. I'm so glad that both the church family and the family-family were able to witness and celebrate with us. How lucky ZB and we as her parents are to have so many people who love her so much.

Only Her Stylist Carpenter Knows For Sure

So I'm tired of my kitchen cabinets. They look old and dated, and they desperately need a makeover. I'd rip them out completely and just put all new cabinets in, but unfortunately I haven't found anyone giving away kitchen cabinets for free, so I suppose I'll just have to work with what I have. (Plus it isn't like there's really anything structurally wrong with the ones I have...they just need a new dye job). So I think I'm going to restain them and maybe change out the hardware. The simplest thing to do, of course, would be to just restain them the same color that they are now. Just cover up the grey so that they won't look quite their age. That way any boo-boo spots won't be noticeable, and they won't come out some weird strange color (remind me to tell you about the time I stained my back deck), and they'll still match the "eyebrows" of the rest of my kitchen. Easy peasy.


But the color of my kitchen cabinets are boring! They're this yellow-y oak color that I swear every early 90's contractor put in every early 90's house and it just screams Update me! Update me! And if I'm going to go through all the trouble, why not get a color I really like? (Like cherry. I've always wanted cherry cabinets.) And while maybe cherry would be too dark with my dark blue tile and my dark blue walls, perhaps a strawberry blond would work instead?

On the other hand though, if I start mixing cherry stain over yellow oak cabinets, am I just going to end up with orange? Because despite living in Big Orange Country, orange cabinets would not be cool. And even if I get a color that's more red that yellow without being orange, is it just going to look like faded knock-off cherry? (Kinda like when you were in college and you and your pals had the bright idea to dye your hair with kool-aid. Does that ever work out for anybody?) I really really don't want kool-aid cabinets.

So what's a girl to do? Ideally it'd be best just to have naturally cherry cabinets, but so few of us are lucky enough to be born with beautiful cabinetry. The next best thing would be to have a professional cabinetry stylist do it, but optional cabinet makeovers are just not in the budget right now. Which leaves the take home, do-it-yourself dye job, which frankly could turn out looking great or looking hideous.

I think I'll go look at some gel stains later know, get a feel for what's available. Check out the home and garden mags to see what the cabinets to the stars are sporting this season, and maybe see if I can find a color that I like.

I'll keep you posted on what I decide for my new look. And ya'll feel free to weigh in also, especially if you've ever done a home cabinet makeover. Or if you haven't. Or if, you know, you have kitchen cabinets at all. I'm a flurry of highlight vs lowlight (vs undercabinet light) indecision, and a girl needs her gal pals to tell her what would look best with her coloring.

Summertime, and the Living is Easy

Have you missed us? We've been out playing at the park!

The Little Miss and I try to take a walk in the neighborhood park a couple of times a week. (Well, I walk...she mostly naps in plush comfort with her sun shade and stroller fan. Such is the life of a baby).
Poor little dear. You see how she suffers.

Meanwhile, I have lots and lots of stuff to share with you and pictures to post, so I'll try to get started on that as soon as we get back from our little expedition. Ya'll stay tuned.