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Monday, April 24, 2017

Science March on Denver

Jasmine came with me this past Saturday to march for science on Earth Day.  We were joined by our friend Doug Kretzmann.  The morning was gray and dreary, but the sun came out and it became a rather nice day.  Seeing the myriad signs and placards was reason enough to go.  Honestly I don't know what effect a march has on this deaf administration, but experiencing the solidarity was good for my morale.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Chillin' at Castlewood Canyon Dam State Park

So, those are the kids.  Gah.  Kai and Rowan are nearly my height, Jasmine is now generally taller than other girls from China who are her same age.  That guy on the right ... he's not one of the kids... actually he kinda is, but not mine... What I mean to say is that's Scott's father, John. 

It's been so long since I posted, I realized I need to say who Scott is.  I met Scott wa-a-a-a-a-a-a-a-a-a-a-y back when we both worked at Muddy's coffee house.  I was doing the waitress thing, Scott bused tables.  Except he wasn't Scott, he was Jazz.  Not Jasmine-Jazz, more music nickname Jazz.  This was at the same time that I was living on 17th St near Colorado Blvd in a subdivided house.  My apartment was ground floor with my CU (and many locations since) buddy Dan Dvorkin living in the apartment that made up the other half of the ground floor.  Upstairs there were also two apartments, someone I don't remember above my apartment and Ray Barber above Dan's apartment.  Ray owns a comic book store.  An ideal life you say?  Yes... coffee, friends and comics, what more could there possibly be?

Anyhow, Facebook once again did with the reunion thing and some Scott dude wrote me.  I was utterly confused until he said Jazz. 

On a side note, I recently reconnected with Ray Barber.  At the time (and by some still) I was generally called Ray.  Ray Ray Jazz Jazz... sounds like a band.  We need to get Dan's, Kai's and Rowan's names in there too.

So, Scott/Jazz had life changes, we had life changes.  He needed a residence and we sure could use a roommate.  Bonus!  We got John to boot... and odd coincidence John and my father were both friends with this fellow Alan in Albuquerque.  Alan forms the connection between our dads because he is both a spelunker (John's passion) and high energy lasers (my dad's) and they were all in Albuquerque at the same time. 

Weird connected world.
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Thursday, May 05, 2011

More Brothers

The children and I lost our cat OGMO a while back, Yeti had died not to long after that. Tommy was a bit before them and Christie before him. All four cats were around the same age and it was very hard to lose all of them within a relatively short period of time. We love cats, but it took me, especially me, a while to be ready to get another cat.

Oh Great Maned One, OGMO, King of the Yard

Kai had been asking for a cat for about six months and finally I relented. I will admit that finding a mouse in the house significantly accelerated my recovery process.  The kids and I went back to the the Dumb Friends League* and interviewed a bunch of cats.  There were two cats we really liked, both were tabby boys a little younger than a year.  The woman who was helping us looked up both their histories and it turned out they were brought in together and they're from the same litter.  DFL's two for one cats offer sealed the deal.  One boy was named Seike, the other Wilber.  We renamed Wilber "Hyde".

Although Hyde is much more introverted and shy, he eats like a pig.  Hyde's hobby is eating.  "Wilber" is probably the more appropriate name but "Hyde and Seike" is so much more fun to say.  When the cats were accidentally fed twice, I removed the food bowl from under Hyde's nose.  He jumped down from the dog-resistant feeding counter, made a bee line for Woofie's food and started chowing down.  Cheerios pouring into a bowl is apparently also a cat food call for Hyde.  He doesn't like catnip, soft food or being picked up.  Nonetheless, he is very affectionate and demands attention with head bumps and climbing up a person's leg.

 Seike is much smaller and svelte.  He is almost overwhelmingly affectionate and very easy going.  He doesn't mind Jasmine picking him up.  This is remarkable in that when Jasmine picks up a cat, the head ends up hanging down, the tail end is up, and the belly exposed to the world.
From left to right, Hyde and Seike

One of Seike's hobbies is trying to put his nose up into the human nostril.  I don't know why.  It's really weird when he catches you off guard and succeeds.  His other hobby is catching mice.  My dad told me not to count on feline help with the little rodents, but Seike's obsessed by catching mice and much more successful than the live traps.  Sadly for the mice, he doesn't always respect the "live trap" part of the mouse removal campaign.  I've stopped minding so much.  After he's done here, I think I'll hire him out to my other neighbors who also gained new lodgers during the winter cold snap.

Our sometimes resident fox.  It dens on the top tier of our backyard.
I've set up a "cat run" in the backyard so the cats can safely bask in the sun.  Small pets need to be protected from our local coyotes and foxes not to mention cars and dogs.  I find cat and small dog sized bones all along walks that follow the fences separating houses from the local open space.  Seike reminded me I still needed to finish affixing the canvas roof.

Woofie loves the cats, but is still trying to figure out how to play with them.  The cats are still deciding whether to torture, run from her or play with her.

Seike reminded me I still needed to finish affixing the canvas roof.

* From, the second definition of the adjective dumb: lacking the power of speech (often offensive when applied to humans): a dumb animal. I've met so many people who think the DFL is contemptuous of animals.

Tuesday, March 08, 2011

Imminent Tennis Ball Seizure

Dogs don't care how they look in photos. Ain't that great?

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Thursday, February 24, 2011

Hold On To Your Hat

Sledding is a great family bonding experience, like most mortal danger experiences.
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Tuesday, February 22, 2011


So, whaddya do when the world is glum? You admit that you agree with the kids and their many-year campaign -- we needed a dog. In twelve years, it's never been the "right time". At that rate I was going to be retired before we got a dog.

Woofie is a six month old, scary smart, athletic outside, lay-about inside, extremely gentle and very quiet (a little too quiet), (likely) border collie / lab mix. We got her from the Dumb Friends League after some lengthy interviews with people and dogs.  We were aiming for a slightly older dog, but she was definitely the right match for us.   Other dogs were too dominant, barked, seemed twitchy or didn't give off the right vibe.  We knew she was the one immediately.

I've seen some great changes in all of us. Funny that.
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Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Cooking, the Rachel Way

Note: I am not Rachael Ray. She spells her name funny. I'm also not spunky. At least I hope I'm not. I've been going for surly lately.

Anyhow, I've recently found myself cooking. A lot of cooking. More cooking than I had done in the past ... life.  For myself, I used to manage a few pb&j's and some Cheerios as well as some raw fruits and vegetables.  I can't let the kids eat like me.  I really don't want to have to fight them for the last of the grape jelly or whatever. 

So, I've been experimenting because regular ol' food still seems a little tame to me.  Thus far we've made Purple Chicken (there is a whole ceremony associated with this dish), Pizza Pot Stickers (a tasty culture clash), Vegan Batter Chicken (no, not made with real Vegans, the batter has no egg or milk) and the dish pictured here: Eyeball Pancakes.  I'm still working out the artistic side of the eyes, but the actual pancake bit I have down pat.  This first set was too Green Eggs and Ham for me, but I have plans for tomorrow's experiment.

Lest you think all my dishes turn out perfect, I will admit that the Super-Sour-Pucker-Up-Million-Lemon Cake was an utter disaster.  SS PUMmeL is something I won't live down for a long while.  I have inherited my mother and father's sour-loving taste buds.  I discovered this trait is recessive.  I traumatized Gary's and my children's sour taste buds and the poor things won't come out of hiding while I'm in the kitchen..
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Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Life Goes On

It's been four months since Theo left.

The kids have asked many questions, but unfortunately all I can say is that I don't understand behavior, that I think it was incredibly wrong to leave, and that I could never imagine leaving them, not in a million years. It's not comforting or satisfying that all I can say to them is that I don't know or understand. I've told them that when I know something, I'll tell them. For right now, we're all in the dark.

That being said, the kids are holding up. I'm holding up. Life is different now, but it goes on. I wanted to say thanks to everyone who has called and offered help, moral support, babysitting, advice and more. Here are some smiling faces to reassure those of you worried about the lack of posts.

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Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Missing Person: Theo Petersen

We've filed a Missing Person report on my husband. If you've seen Theo Petersen please contact Det Jason Weaver with any information 303-660-7588 Missing Person Case 10-68523.

You can also see Theo's profiles, picture and related information at: LinkedIn Public Profile, Web Development with Apache and Perl, and Good Reads. He was driving a white '94 Saturn station wagon with Colorado plates the letters are GBL, but the numbers I'm not sure of, maybe 683. He said that he was driving to Indianapolis, but no one has verified that he arrived there.

Since his last communication on June 30th, he hasn't contacted his work and his family haven't heard from him either. Various details of his departure have worried us about his safety and well-being. We are in the midst of a divorce, so he could be under a significant amount of stress. As of this writing, I have not located either his passport or mine. The police have not called me with any information.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Nosey Mantis

We've come up with a gazillion silly captions for this photo. I found the baby mantis while pulling thistles, but that wasn't quite cool enough that the boys wanted to assist me with weeding.

As we were releasing her I took a few obligatory photos and then was inspired to place her on Rowan's nose. Dunno why. I think I just wanted something different than the demonstration of scale using my finger tip.
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Monday, May 24, 2010

Machine Glasses

Jasmine just got into a low-vision examine through Children's Hospital and Anchor Center. These are great for the full battery of exams -- also an extra expert opinion for the insurance company. Eye doctor visits are the best, Jasmine loves them. The "machine glasses" are extra fun.
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Wednesday, March 03, 2010

Endless Tatas

The title of this blog entry should pick up a number of confused porn surfers.

In actuality, this is a dry-erase picture by Jasmine. She's becoming quite the white board artist. She's also fascinated by adults, actually by women. "Grown ups have breasts," she tells me. I respond, "Yes, women have breasts." Then she says, "When I am a grown up I will have breasts, and drink Diet Coke and I can sit in the passion seat [sic she means 'front passenger seat']." "Okay, honey."

Currently, all women that are drawn must have two round circles on their chests to indicate their breasts. I think she'll start demanding the addition of Diet Coke cans in their hands as well. In this drawing, the breasts look like drawings my 5th grade male classmates used to draw (minus the center dots to indicate [naughty giggle] nipples. I think they look like an infinity sign. Breasts Forever!

Kai has just begun taking the bus to school becuase his new school much further away than our local school. That school as far northwest of our house as Rowan's is southeast -- a 30-minute drive between the two. Anyhow, Kai's first day riding the bus in, we all gathered around the door as the bus pulled up. Jasmine starts shouting, "Bye! Good-bye! Zài jiàn! Adios! Bye bus, thanks for taking Kai away!" We knew what she meant, but it certainly was funny.
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Sunday, December 13, 2009

Prematurely Gray

Jasmine has been begging me daily for weeks and weeks to dye her hair black or brown. She says she wants my color (and the color of her favorite dolls). If you tell her her hair is beautiful and everyone loves and wants it, she'll tell you she doesn't want to be beautiful and you can have her white hair.

I think there will be a hoard of people surrounding the house bearing torches, pitchforks and hair bleach. It seems a crime against nature to change her moonlight hair to muddy brown.

Luckily there are temporary hair colors so I can satisfy everyone. In these pictures she's got the Halloween hair spray color. NEVER USE THIS STUFF. We still haven't cleaned up all the black smudges. As you can see an entire spray can has managed to make her hair a pretty light gray. Still she was very happy and I could wash it out after about four shampoos. The first go was opaque, sickly gray. IMPORTANT: clean this stuff off in the shower.

We're now trying a temporary dark brown on a lock of hair before we try it out on her whole head. I was worried, but again, the dye doesn't seem to "stick" in her hair. Unlike artificially bleached hair, her hair is whole and undamaged which means the color seems to slip off.

The brown dye looked like burnt sugar syrup, very worrying. But after following the directions, she had an ethereal, translucent beige lock of hair. Her hair as a whole reminded me of the foamy, steamed milk on a cappuccino with an artistic swoop of coffee running through it.
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Saturday, November 28, 2009


While on a routine patrol, our noble hero Banana-man, encountered a stash of illicit beauty supplies. He approached cautiously in case it was a trap. Instincts, luck, experience, call it what you will, saved the brave young crime fighter from a nefarious ensnarement. From a jumbo tube of daily exfoliating scrub exploded a cloud of metallic nano-howler monkeys. A blast of high-pitched howls, swinging nano-fists, and gnashing canines filled the still air. Banana-man leaped back with an alacrity that would have made his Capoeira master proud (had the beloved teacher not died at the hands of Banana-man's evil twin, Plantain-inator: see issue #423). As they drained the last of their factory installed batteries, one superior mini-mechanical monkey minion managed to misappropriate our man's mask and mangled it.

There was no time to lose. Ripping the stainless steel tube from the vocal assembly of an attackers and a large Banana from his belt, Banana-man quickly constructed a new mask. As he worked he realized that this trap could only be the work of one evil genius: Avonica. Once an assistant manager of a small electronics store, she had been kidnapped by a roving gang of zealous pyramid-scheming entrepreneurs. Back in their secret laboratory, in a tragic experiment, she became what she was now -- a warped, evil creature of flashy, meaningless technology and hyper-feminine kitsch.

Though his secret identity had been cleverly maintained, Banana-man no longer had use of the most powerful weapon in his arsenal -- the Banana-rang. But there was no time to be concerned with that. In the distance, Banana-man heard the ringing yell of the innocent, beautiful brick layer caught up in Plantain-inator's plot. Although he could hear the dull thuds of masonry against skulls, he had to hurry, she didn't have an endless supply of ammunition. "Why? Why didn't she listen? She should have never followed me out here," he fumed. Then with an ironic laugh, he mused, "But then again, I always seem to attract the plucky ones."
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