Feb
05
2014

Sleeping In Seattle

 

Hello from Seattle, where it is currently really, really, really cold. No, I mean really cold. Like, think of the coldest thing you can think of right now—a milkshake with ice cubes in it, the Arctic tundra, Paris Hilton's heart—and multiply that by a hundred and four, and that is how cold it is here. I just walked seven blocks back from my office and by the time I pushed open the doors of the hotel lobby, I couldn't feel most of my extremities, and I was wearing gloves, a hat, and a coat that kept me pretty toasty in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. In November. I mean, come on. 

On the upside, here is the view from my office, which could not possibly be more beautifully Seattle-ish.

Okay, wait, maybe it could be a tiny bit more beautifully Seattle-ish, but only if it had Frasier Crane somewhere in the left hand of the frame. Holding a cup of coffee. Next to McDreamy. 

(Is McDreamy still a thing? Do people still watch Grey's Anatomy? I remember the last time I visited Seattle, I was obsessed with the show and kept thinking I saw Meredith everywhere, but I must confess that I stopped watching several years ago and now I have no idea what the residents of Seattle Grace are up to anymore. Although presumably the same five people are still getting together and breaking up in various combinations.)

As well as not realizing that it was going to be this cold in Seattle—I mean, it's not like I have a weather app on my phone or anything; it's not like I could have looked it up (I could have looked it up)—I also did not realize that I was going to be arriving in the city on the day of a major parade. Why was there a major parade in Seattle today? Well, if you just asked yourself that question, you're in good company, because I did not know either. This is because the parade was to celebrate the winning of the Superbowl, but because the Superbowl is a sporting event and my brain shuts off at the phrase "sporting event" somewhere around "spor—", I kind of didn't really pay it any attention until the hotel check-in person said "wow, lot of people out there for the parade, huh?" and I said "oh, there's a parade today? For what?" and then I was actually asked to leave the United States of America immediately for unpatriotic conduct and also my husband texted me and asked for a divorce. 

(Whatever. Talk to me when there's a parade for the Oscars. Oh wait, there is! It's Live From the Red Carpet on E! and I have the time and date of it written down in my planner. Look, I'm sorry, we all have our passions. Yours might be football but mine is marveling at what a good job that boob tape is doing at holding everything in.) 

I am going to finish this now because I have one-quarter of The Goldfinch left to read—I have been dragging it out for an entire month because I never want to not be reading it—and also a pack of Skittles to get through. In bed. In this quiet room. Bolstered by the magnificent knowledge that when I turn off the light and drift into sleep tonight, no-one is going to wake me up three hours later and demand to eat. Small pleasures, friends. You can't even imagine. 

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Jan
13
2014

And In The End We All Survived

First of all, thank you so, so, so much for all your kind and compassionate and encouraging comments about my return to work. I read them over and over, and they helped me so much to feel better about it all. I worked from home last Wednesday, Thursday and Friday—the equivalent of inching body-part-by-body-part into the swimming pool, as opposed to just cannonballing in from the diving board; highly recommended if you can swing it—and then today I actually went back to the office for real.

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Jan
06
2014

These Days Are Numbered

I go back to work on Wednesday. Even writing that sentence, my heart simultaneously plummeted and soared, like when you get on an elevator that you think is going down but then the doors close and it starts going up. 

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Dec
31
2013

A Lot Of Words About 2013

Oh hey, remember me? Here I am on the very last day of 2013, squeezing in one last blog post so I can say that I updated eight times since mid-July instead of seven. I mean, I don't know who I think I'd be saying this to—the imaginary blogging police, I can only assume, who presumably monitor this kind of thing?but anyway, there you go.

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Nov
17
2013

I Wrote This Entire Thing Without Taking A Breath Can You Tell

Thank you, thank you, thank you for all your wise and helpful comments on my last post. You know, sometimes I feel like I just can't be bothered with blogging anymore—all the sponsored this, Pinterest-fodder that—and I think "eh, I'll just show myself out quietly, there's nothing in this for me anymore," and then you, all you wonderful people, weigh in on a subject with your thoughts and your advice and your experiences and I realize that what I've always valued most of all about writing online

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Nov
11
2013

Party At My Crib

Look, let me just tell you once and for all that when it comes to babies and sleep, things are every bit as terrible as you would imagine. As in, once you have one, you probably won't be getting very much of it at all. 

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Nov
04
2013

There Is No Narrative Construct To This Blog Post But I Hit Publish So I'm Calling It A Victory

Hello! I just got back from a week in a cabin in Northern Michigan—actually, I kept calling it a cabin but it was really just a condo decorated very rusticly and located in a woodsy setting—with a small portion of my family. My parents got lots of grandkid time, my kid got lots of grandparent time, and I got lots of "sleeping til 10am because someone else is looking after the baby" time, so basically it was a win-win for all. 

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Oct
03
2013

You Are Doing Just Fine

One of the things that has surprised me so much about having a baby—and there is so much that does surprise you; leaves you reeling, in fact—is that almost everyone I've spoken to in the last eleven weeks since Hugo was born has asked me how I'm doing. How I'm doing. Once we've ascertained that the baby is thriving and well and sleeping just enough that Sean and I aren't contemplating driving him back to the hospital and asking about their return policy, their attention is turned to me.

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Aug
26
2013

Parents Of Twins, I Salute You

So having a baby is a little time-consuming, turns out. I know! Who'd have guessed! Despite the fact that Hugo has proven, so far, to have inherited his father's mellow, easygoing temperament—as opposed to his mother's, ahem, less mellow, less easygoing one—the basic job of keeping a tiny human being fed, happy, and not rolling around in his own poop all day has been surprisingly all-encompassing.

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Random Flashbacks

Nov
16
2006

Respect To The Clarinets

For the last few days, my parents have been in India. My dad had a business trip there, and my mother's mission was to prove how much she loved me by buying me multiple pairs of sparkly bejeweled shoes. I drew around my foot on a piece of paper before she left and then cut around it, so that she'd be able to place my stand-in "foot" inside each pair of shoes to see if they were going to fit properly.

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Feb
22
2006

Today Is The First Day Of The Rest Of Your Life

For the last eight years, Sean has hated his job. I wish I could tell you I was exaggerating about the "eight years" part, but I'm really not. He's been very good at it, of course, and has garnered all sorts of accolades and promotions, but he's hated almost every second of it. I suppose that's just what happens when you're passionate about design and photography, and you end up working in nuclear power.

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Aug
24
2008

Blast From the Past

Having a subscription to Us Weekly has it benefits. I recently won a Starbucks card at work, for instance, after I entered a competition in which one had to identify a handful of famous people's children from pictures cut out of magazines. I got 'em all---Suri Cruise, Apple Paltrow, even Liam Spelling, if you can believe it---except for one elusive celebrity spawn, who turned out to be the daughter of one of the members of Wilson Phillips, which was a little esoteric, if you ask me, because who listens to Wilson Phillips anymore?

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Dec
28
2010

Christmas Aftermath

Did you have a lovely Christmas, if Christmas is one of the things you celebrate? I certainly did, right up until about an hour ago when I found out my 9:25pm flight from San Diego to San Francisco was delayed until 10:50pm. Of course I found this out right after I'd waved goodbye to my dad at the airport and checked my baggage, thus leaving me no choice but to take a seat at Gate 10 next to the man to my left---who not only smells suspiciously of feet but also has the charming habit of humming tunelessly---and entertain myself for close to two hours.

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Feb
02
2007

Now Qualified To Answer All Questions About Bouquets

Alright, enough whining already---and by whining, I mean my whining. Is there anything more irritating than a person feeling sorry for herself? Yesterday, after the afternoon's allotment of self-pity was over, I did what I always do when I'm feeling a little down in the dumps in a strange city, and went and spent a large amount of money on British chocolate. What, you didn't know that sugar and fat and artificial flavorings aren't bad for you when they're manufactured across the pond?

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Oct
25
2007

Oh, Canada! Oh, Portland!

We're thinking of going away the weekend after next, partly because the travel bug is up to its old tricks and IT ITCHES OH IT ITCHES, and partly because I have a (soon to expire) promotional code to use on a last-minute getaway, and since I always seem to leave things to the last minute anyway, it seems particularly fitting that I'm leaving it to the last minute to take a last-minute vacation. Isn't that irony or something? Alanis?

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Aug
21
2007

Fond And Familiar

I've figured out how to get things done around here: you just invite people over. Seriously, the only reason we got our act together and drove to IKEA and picked a coffee table a few months ago was because I spontaneously decided to host a dinner party, and Sean, sweetheart though he is, couldn't abide the thought of people sitting around on our new sofa with magazines piled up around their knees on the floor. Actually, I lie, Sean could totally abide the thought of that.

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May
05
2009

You Other Pies Can't Deny

I flew down to San Diego on Friday night to visit my family in their new home, and aside from the woman in the row behind me shouting "OH GOD, IT'S CRASHING, WE'RE ALL GOING TO DIE!" as the plane took off into some (admittedly) rather stormy skies, it was as enjoyable a weekend as I've had in a long time.

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