Friday, January 30, 2009

Black & White

So I'm going to the "Black & White" Ball for the MN Film & TV Board in February. We figured it would be a good opportunity to do some networking with other film/people-with-money-types in Minnesota. We need to get out there, ya know? So, it'll be me, Steve & Jason. It's a formal affair and sounds fun. The theme is "film noir." There are the usual - music, drink, silent auction, etc. I'm looking forward to it.

I asked yesterday how "formal" formal is...Ie: would Steve be able to wear his black wedding suit instead of a tux (yes). The woman replied that some men would be in tuxes, some in suits; some women in gowns, some in cocktail dresses, others in vintage...the only requirement, obviously, is black & white.

So I got to thinking - I should wear my wedding dress! It's sort of 1940's-ish in style, and although it's not WHITE I think the "candlelight" or "ivory" or whatever it is would probably pass and when will I EVER get to wear it again?

But then I had the depressing thought...oh my god, there is NO WAY I'm going to be able to fit into it. It's only been 2 1/2 years but I'm a completely different shape. I didn't have the heart to try it on last night- have to get a few days of ab routines & water flushing in before I submit myself to that. I may be going the vintage route after all!!

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Am I justified? Or just a total bitch?

Here's the situation...

We're going to SXSW in March. "We" means my business partner, myself, our friend who's helping us with promoting/publicity, and another friend who worked on the film.

Here's the dilemma. Our friend who is going (the one that worked on the film) - well, this is going to be quite a financial stress on her. She'll be on vacation, so not losing pay, but the flight, hotel & film badge are spendy. This is not a cost that 4 Track is picking up, simply because we can't. So, while my partner & I's flights, film badge & hotel are paid for; hers are not (the promoter is fending for himself, and this is fine with all). So, I could offer to share my hotel room which would defray her costs a bit....but I kind of don't want to.

I've LONGED for several nights in a row, sleeping BY MYSELF. No babies, no husbands, no light, no sound, no nothing. I want to be able to get up when I want, take a shower when I want, sit around in my undies while watching WEEDS on Netflix on Demand at 1am should I so desire. I want to be ALONE.

So while I know it's stupid for me to be petty about this, I'm kind of feeling petty about this. I KNOW I should offer to share a room. That would be the GOOD and RIGHT thing to do...but I want my alone time. I crave it desperately.

So am I justified in this? Or am I completely selfish bitch?

I vacillate.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009


Well, we finally got our SXSW rejection yesterday. One week out from the final notification date. One week! They've been sending rolling rejections out since Nov 16 so being 7 days shy of the final date made us a little optimistic. Probably too optimistic. I'm usually not affected by rejections because I'm so used to them and because I don't actually believe we'll ever get INTO a f'ing festival, but this was different and now I'm paying the price.

In reality our little film cannot compete with films that have a budget 10x or 100x what ours was. It might be an "okay" film but it just doesn't have enough production value, sheen, gloss whatever to make it to the next level.

That being said, we're still planning on GOING to SXSW to do the networking, schmoozing, guerilla campaigning but I was really hoping that this time we'd be the belle of the ball. Or at least a wallflower.

I'm still hoping that at LEAST we get into Fargo for crying out loud.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Simple Abundance - a Excerpt

As I've mentioned I've been reading SIMPLE ABUNDANCE again this year and trying to take time to get my life in order so I can enjoy all that it offers. This entry from yesterday was particularly potent to me. I'd like to share it with you:

January 25 -- from Simple Abundance by Sarah Ban Breathnach

Up until now many of us have secretly believed that we had to wait until things calmed down a bit before we started to get our acts together. Tomorrow we'll begin discovering authentic pleasures. Tomorrow we'll treat ourselves better. Tomorrow we'll take the time to enjoy ourselves. Tomorrow, when everything calms down. This I can report from the front lines: life never calms down long enough for us to wait until tomorrow to start living the lives we deserve. Life is always movement, always change, always unforeseen circumstances. There will always be something trying to grab your attention: the phone call, the child, the fax, the car breaking down, the check that never arrives in the mail. Let's just acknowledge that as far as real life is concerned, we are only one step away from dealing with dysfunction.

So what are we going to do about it? We can stop waiting for life to become perfect and start working with what we've got to make it as satisfying as we can. We can accept, bless, give thanks, and get going. Today we can begin to call forth the riches from our everyday life. Today we can move from lack of abundance. Procrastination has robbed us of too many precious opportunities. Call a friend for lunch, begin to read or even write that novel, organize your papers, try a new recipe for dinner, smile at everyone you meet, sit and dream before a blazing fire, pick up your needlepoint again, act as if you're grateful to be alive, scatter joy. Think of one thing that would give you a genuine moment of pleasure today and do it. Great! The first steps in the journey are always the most difficult to take. "Life begets life. Energy creates energy," the famous French actress Sarah Bernhardt reminds us. "It is by spending oneself that we become rich."

Enjoy a simple pleasure today. Happy Monday

Friday, January 23, 2009

Mostly Just for Anna....

It has begun...

Option #1 - recap

It was okay. Don't get me wrong. I had no BAD feeling about this place whatsoever. It was open & clean...there is a cook that comes in and makes breakfast & lunch daily (uh, can I go there?); there are age appropriate activities & potty training & nap time & books & songs, etc. There is a playground and outside play is encouraged. I liked the director & the teachers. It was fine.

But it was a daycare. There ya go. There's my hangup.

So we'll keep it in mind. We have a couple other places to inquire about/look at and we're also trying to figure out if we could share a nanny with a few other people. We'll see what works. If I could I would stay home. It's such a weird time in my life. I have my dream job in two places. *sigh*

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Option #1

Okay - off to view daycare option #1.

Wish me luck.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Inauguration Day!

I must admit I'm sitting here watching the inauguration & all that comes with it and getting a little choked up. And nothing's HAPPENED yet. This is the first time I really remember paying attention to the pomp & circumstance of this day and I'm excited for the first time in years. I know things won't be perfect but I'm so filled with hope. Yup. it's true. I'm drinking the kool-aid, I'm hoping for the best.

I'm trying to get Dahlia to comprehend the gravity of what we're watching, but mostly she just wants to play with the cat's grass. Someday she'll get it.

I'm thankful today that I have a job that allows me to work from home so I can soak it all in.

UPDATE: As soon as President Elect Obama stepped out & was announced, Dahlia spilled the cat's water bowl while Beavis simultaneously puked down the radiator. What timing. Nice.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Gran Torino

Yup - I blew off work this afternoon and went to a matinee (sometimes, I really love my job). It was a rare "Dahlia-free" afternoon as Steve had taken her out to his Dad's with him.

Sometimes I really just like going to movies by myself. I don't know why and wouldn't feel the same way about live theater, but sometimes a movie is just the thing. I didn't have a lot of options, especially for when I wanted to go, but I wanted to see GRAN TORINO so it worked out fine with me.

I love Clint Eastwood. I would not mess with him. I'm not going to "review" the film but I will say this. I liked it. I liked the pace of it (although, it did take me a while to get into) and while I had a pretty good idea going in on how it would turn out, I was surprised by a few things. I enjoyed it.

Meal Planning

I've been trying for the past several months to do a weekly meal plan. I absolutely HATE the words "what do you want for dinner?" so it's much better if I think about this once and have all the appropriate groceries on hand (with one or two "back ups" just in case we're REALLY not in the mood for something in the plan when that day arrives). This makes it much easier for deciding what to have for dinner too. If Steve asks that awful question and I say "I don't know" then we go back and forth and back and forth and often what I suggest gets shot down. But if he asks and I say "we're having Potato Corn Chowder (which we're having tonight) then he usually says "oh, okay." MUCH less stress. I don't know why that was a big stressor, but it was!

Anyway - Last week's plan was this:

Monday - Homemade Pizza w/Salad
Tuesday - Quick & Easy Italian Meatball Soup (from the new cookbook - MUCH better than the navy bean & Ham soup. MUCH).
Wednesday - Beef & broccoli stir fry
Thursday - leftovers
Friday - Crunchy ranch chicken w/roasted potato medley (fancy!)
Saturday - Mac & Cheese & veggies

4 new recipes last week! I actually got a mailing - do you ever get them - the recipe cards that they're enticing you with and you can subscribe and get a binder and more recipes blah blah blah? Well, I never subscribe but I always keep the recipes and this batch were pretty good.

This week's meal plan is shaping up to look like this:

Sunday - Homemade pizza (again!) Yum
Monday - Potato Corn Chowder (from a soup mix Steve got for Christmas - Henry & David)
Tuesday - Tater Tot Hot Dish (fancy!)
Wednesday - On your own/leftovers - Mama has Stitch & Bitch!
Thursday - Chili (recipe from Laurie - Steve's FAVORITE chili recipe), corn bread
Friday - Leftover chili
Saturday - Chicken Cordon Bleu w/potatoes

Let me just say it's a big relief having this all figured out on Sunday. We even did shopping yesterday so aside from picking up some milk & lettuce, I don't have to shop until next week - whohooo!

This is all part of my trying-to-simplify-and-get-my-life-back-on-track strategy. I'm also trying to do the Fly Lady "missions," I'm reading "Simple Abundance" (again) and trying to take time to reflect, meditate & dream about how life should be. So far I'm feeling pretty good.

Friday, January 16, 2009

Yakkity Yak

The Return of Craftapalooza was last night. I don't think it has happened since Nov of '07. Wow. How has time gone that fast!

It was fun - there were 4 of us, lots of good food & wine and crafting. A couple knitters (hi Anna!), a drawer and me doing some scrapbook stuff.

I of course drank probably one glass of wine too many (? one?) and just talked my head off. Blech. I hate that. Ugh.

Ah well, shake it off. Get over your garrulous self and move one, right?

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Hard to Believe...

That it's been a year since this photo was taken (yes, I know the year on the sign is wrong. I was extremely sleep-deprived & milk-deficient when this photo was taken...)

You can check out the update here.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Weekend Update

So another weekend has come and gone. And BOY was it a great one. (I am being sarcastic). It wasn't necessarily "bad" it was just...."meh."

Friday night: Um....I got home late from grocery shopping so therefore we ate late and had a very hungry & crabby baby. Fun! I then made 2 pans of lemon cheese bars for Steve's Uncle's memorial service on Saturday.

Saturday: Rush rush rush! Try to get all three of us clothed, bathed, fed, bars cut, FIL picked up, etc for said memorial service. Spent most of the day there and you know what? There are no ramps from the parking lot to the entrance at Marshall School (the memorial was in the chapel there). There is handicapped parking on top, but if you're like me and just have a stroller, you're f'd. And there's lots of snow & ice in the parking lot and if you're also like me - you're carrying 2 pans of bars, a platter on which to put them, a baby, diaper bag & purse. Your husband is probably going out to pick up his Dad...there wasn't room for all of us + stroller + walker + wheelchair in one car so we had to drive separately. After the Memorial back home to putz around & entertain the babe. Heat up leftovers for dinner. Waste time wondering what to do. Do nothing. Go to bed.

Sunday: Waffles! Yum. Run to Target for diapers ad suddenly we are OUT! I only bought one box of diapers at Target. ONE ITEM. I actually walked around the store for a while looking for other things to buy. It was weird. I have never just bought diapers before and didn't realize they weren't taxed. Cool. Go home. Pack up shit to go to Steve's Dad's - milk, snacks, diaper bag, books, high chair (for Dahlia), ski boots, skis, beer, diet coke, knitting stuff, video camera, etc (for me & Steve). Drop Dahlia off and go skiing at Lester for about an hour. It was getting dark. I hadn't been out there yet this year. Beautiful. Good workout. I needed that. I didn't fall - yay! (sidebar: I found my old college transcript and looked through it the other day - my lowest grade in college (a b-) was in CROSS COUNTRY SKIING! I am such a loser). Went back to my FIL's to wait for dinner to be done. Their oven must suck because I swear the chicken & rice casserole was in the oven for....over 2 hours! It was ridiculous! It was good. The chicken at least. The rice was crunchy. We watched home movies of the uncle that passed away while eating dinner. We didn't get home until LATE and Dahlia was passed out. But she woke up at 3and was up until after 5 and that was awesome.

Oh and my back is seriously screwed up. It feels like my lower vertebrae are smushed down together and it HURTS. Hard to hold Dahlia, hard to pick things up, hard to walk down stairs. Awesome. Sleeping was so much fun last night.... Hmph.

Happy Monday!

Friday, January 09, 2009


So I haven't made any phone calls yet about daycares. Not one. I did make a list of potential providers in nearish neighborhoods, I've gotten a few suggestions from people and I've been thinking about it a lot but I have made no action. What is my problem? Argh. I need to just do this and get the thing settled but obviously there is something holding me back.

I'm procrastinating so much that I actually did all of my "FlyLady Missions" this morning before I left for work! I made the bed, and swished & swiped, I made my grocery list, started some laundry, threw junk away, swept & mopped my kitchen floor! Wow. So procrastination in one area, leads to accomplishment in others, I guess.

Tuesday, January 06, 2009

I have to admit, I'm a wee bit proud...

Me & Miss M

Our 2nd Match of the Month!

Here's the article:

January is National Mentoring Month and Mentor Duluth would like to highlight a few of its outstanding matches.


MATCH BACKGROUND: Carrie and MariAnna have been matched through Neighborhood Youth Services for 2½ years.

ACTIVITIES: Together they have tried many activities. They don’t ever seem to have a hard time finding things to do. Sometimes just hanging out together at Carrie’s house, eating dinner, baking, playing games, doing art projects or playing with Dahlia, Carrie’s new baby, makes the perfect evening.

Carrie and MariAnna’s favorite thing to do is art of any kind. Art activities that they have done together include collages, card-

making, drawing, painting and knitting. One of their favorite trips this fall was visiting the zoo and having a picnic. They also enjoy many other activities, such as going to plays, visiting parks, watching movies or going on hikes. Carrie enjoys watching MariAnna at her karate classes, and she just earned her black belt this December!

QUOTE: Carrie says, “We get along great. It’s really easy to just be together.” MariAnna said, “My mentor is very, very awesome!” These two are a great fit.

The Dreaded

So the time has come. The time that I've been dreading. The time to find some daycare for Miss Dahlia.

I hate this. I wish I could stay home with her and devout all my attention to her but I can't. And because I can't, I have to find someone to look after her so that she DOES get loads of attention and I can work (and hopefully continue to bring home a paycheck).

I don't know where to look. I don't know if I should try to find a home daycare or a center or a nanny. I don't know how I"ll be able to afford it. There are so many questions.

There is a daycare a couple houses down from us (home) but I don't have a good feeling about it. Although it would be supremely convenient, I've never seen the kids play outside except when I've seen a couple of them (older) racing down the middle of the street unsupervised. I don't know. Just leaves me with a not-great feeling. I like the idea of finding a nanny type to come to our house, but I know it won't be as flexible (or will it?) than finding a center. And again, not sure how we're going to afford it.

so, that's on my task list for this week (and next week...?) I don't want to give her up. I don't want to lose spending my days with her even though I know that some separation would be good. Basically, I wish I didn't have to work. I could do my own thing and make measly amounts of money & spend a lot of quality time with her. There are so many cool activities to do with wee ones - Hartley Nature Center has a program, the Y has oodles of programs, the Zoo, etc. *sigh* I don't like this.

I know in the end I will feel better - I will get more work done, I will have some 'adult' time for me, but it's still a heart breaking decision.


Monday, January 05, 2009

Back to the Grind

So - back to the grind here. The grind of getting up at a reasonable hour (oh wait, I have a baby, scratch that). Back to trying to get out the door at a reasonable time. Back to trying to get lunches packed, diaper bags packed, work crap packed, car warming up so it's not driving an ice box; time for raiding the piggy bank (again!) for quarter to park downtown (why don't I just always have some on hand?!?); back to trying to figure out taxes & marketing and trying to keep a 1-year-old entertained. Back to trying to come up with creative ideas, finish projects already started and keep the office tidy(ier) than 2008. Whew.

And the 1-year-old just dropped my keys, crying to commence soon although I'd prefer her to take a nap. She's not too interested....dang.

I have big goals for the year, the top on my list is not going insane. I also am hoping for teeth & words from Dahlia, a new digital camera and selling a film. Aim high, right?

I completely forgot what I was initially going to post so I guess it's a good time to shut up.

Oh I am making soup again today in the crock pot...but this is my stand-by Absent Cook Stew - a never-fail. Whew!

Friday, January 02, 2009

Souped up soup updated...

It wasn't that good. It was better but - meh....

I added sauteed garlic, celery & carrots
a small bit of cheese

salt & pepper was better but not good.

I'm throwing the rest out. I just can't bear to think of having this meal AGAIN.

I will be making appropriate notes in the cookbook.

Phones Suck

Dahlia sucked on my phone and now no one can hear me.


Time for an iPhone??

New Year's Soup

I got a new cookbook for Christmas. It's a Soup cookbook and since I love to make soup it's a perfect fit! :)

I decided to make Navy Bean & Ham soup for New Year's Day.

I soaked the beans the night before (I actually remembered to do this!) and threw everything else in the crockpot yesterday morning. What I found strange was that it said it made 6 servings yet it filled TWO CROCKPOTS. Who are you serving?? Paul Bunyan?

Anyway - I went ahead and made the soup and while it smelled delish...the results were only...blah.

The soup is missing something - some kind of spice, some salt some....???

The ham I bought was really really tasty as I was cutting it up but after sitting in the pot all day tasted very bland.

We have so much leftover...I don't know what to do with it. I'm considering adding cooked carrots & celery and I dont' know what else? Any spice suggestions? I know it'll freeze up well and we'll eventually eat it all but I'd like to make it a little tastier!

**I also would like a new digital camera as I think my pictures are very blah. Too bad my birthday is so far away!**

Thursday, January 01, 2009

2009 - A Resolution

So this is the post where I list all the ridiculous resolutions I have. Categorized into personal, family, health, travel, marriage, career, blah blah blah. Well, I'm not doing that this year.

Of course I could wax poetic about wanting to drink more water and hike more; about being a better wife, mother, friend, daughter, listener, filmmaker, blah blah blah.

I could talk about how I want to improve my skills in one area or another or read X amount of books and have adventures in places I've never been to.

I could write how I want to be happy with what I have, save more money, declutter more, live more simply, cook more, bake more, make more gifts, etc.

I want to keep in touch with friends better, send gifts & cards on time, not be late to everything, be happy with myself more frequently than not and say my prayers every night.

And you know what? I want to do all of those things and so many more. Of course I want to do them but this year I'm calling that "life" and not "resolutions."

So - my BIG resolution for 2009........

Learn how to knit socks.

That's it.

If anyone has any good sock-knitting resources, I would greatly appreciate you sending them my way. I have just taught myself how to knit on double pointed needles and I'm excited (and awaiting frustration) the next step.

Anyone else have any good resolutions?