Yesterday Seattle broke it's record high - it was 78°! Today it goes back to regular temperatures for this time of year - mid-fifties. But oh, it was glorious!
Yesterday I rented Pieces of April and I thought it was great. It included the woman from The Station Agent - I need to rent Far From Heaven to see what role she played in it.
Sometime this weekend we are going to try to see Goodbye Lenin with Kolja.
Tonight Sean & I head to Graceland to see Coriander.
I really, really need to clean my kitchen.
And there's my day. Whoop-dee-do.

Todd, William, and Chris enjoy lunch outside at JA


PB Hugs cookies!

What kind of tree is this?
Today was cookies and the movie She's Having a Baby at Heather's. We sought out the new Hershey's kisses that are filled with caramel and they were a success.
<-- This tree is near Heather's, and the sun was setting when I took this picture, but it's a beautiful tree, so if anyone can tell me what it is, I'd be so happy. Maybe I'll have Heather take a better, bigger picture during the day.
Aunt Nancy has too many garden beets. Anyone out there have some good beet recipes for her?

I've been given the daunting task of blogging forward. Estella blogged me forward, and I've been stressing for a few days on who I would blog forward. I mean, have you seen my links page? I visit all of them.
I can't choose just one, so I will mention a few of my favorites, and why.
Izzle Pfaff is ten times funnier than most people you know. If you take a tangent, wad it up, and hurl it as far as you can, that's Skot. I usually leave his site more confused than before I got there, but I get a good laugh nonetheless.
Bonnie has eleven children and she homeschools many of them. She does yoga and cooks and bakes and she's brilliant and friendly and I'm so lucky to have found her. Well, actually she found me, but whatever.
She's also in love with her husband. You know... some couples you meet love each other, but other couples you meet are in love, and you can just tell. I get overwhelmed just reading about her day.
I've been linking to Sonya for years, and I've tried many times to meet her in person (she lives right by Six Arms) to no avail. Everything she writes is poetry. She sees life through the eyes of a young, happy girl. I wish I had her sing-song attitude and lifestyle.
If you love television, visit Elfcakes and The Black Saint for commentary. If you love to cook and bake, see Heather. For run-on sentences that make you laugh so hard at someone else's crazy life, see Estella.
There are so many more, but that's all for today.

Goodbye Rashmi!

Rashmi, Me, Todd

Oh duh, why do I take pictures like this?!
I ended up bringing chopped veggies and feta dip, to throw some vegetables in the mix. Of course Alison also realized that the lunch was too starchy, so she ended up bringing steamed veggies instead of sesame noodles. Chris did the baklava instead of jambalaya (I think it's for the best.)
Rashmi's gift from me was two boxes of Girl Scout Cookies.
She will be missed.
In other news, Joe sent me an e-mail saying they were about to go swimming. On the equator. (We live in the same day again as of this afternoon!) His ship docks April 14th. I can't believe how much I've missed him.
P.S. Skipping Six Arms tonight - can you believe it? Ninety-seven cents in the bank. 

A Culinary Cry for Help - and I need an answer by 9 a.m. PST
Here's the situation: tomorrow is Rashmi's going away potluck lunch at Johnston Architects (she and her husband are moving back to India). But herein lies my stress. People are bringing the following:
Daal (lentils), raita (a cold cucumber salad), sesame noodles, naan bread, tea and cookies, and either jambalaya or baklava (yes, I'm serious).
What the hell would you bring that would round out that meal?!?
Keep in mind I should be able to both purchase and make it by 11:30 a.m., it should be inexpensive (please), and it should be something that can travel (i.e. steamed veggies are out).
I suggested the Germans' tossed salad, Sean suggested butter.
What do you think?

Did You Ever Knooooow That You're My Heeeeeee-roooooooo

Mark (in Korea)
Mark left a comment on my Outlook Help page, and Manuel e-mailed me, and said "he's right" and then he offered to come over and do it for me. I made tuna casserole.
Then as soon as Manuel showed up, Meredith called to see if she could do some sewing at our place (we have that big living room table) and I decided to make Banana Cookies as well.
The casserole was fabulous, the cookies were mediocre.
I finished that Live From New York book. I ate it up. I loved it.
*The first person I sent an e-mail to was Steve in Hot Hot Heat, begging them to come play in Seattle soon. It's been too long.

Meredith making a dress

Noah & Monica visit


Oh Boy! Termites!!

Monica & Dommi
Would you believe that Noah chose to crawl into the crawlspace below our house to see why our shower wouldn't drain anymore? Can you imagine what could have been down there? Sean made him dinner in exchange, and man was that ever a fabulous exchange. It was a very, very good thing - he found termites on one post down there. But just one post. They had a big mound down there, but he smashed it, then took the picture. And he took so many pictures of the crawlspace below our house! I know what it looks like now! And I still don't want to go down there!
Still kinda a mystery, though. After the construction down the street, our shower stopped draining (well, it drained, but really really slow, so we couldn't use it). Then the next day, we noticed the sink (in the same bathroom) draining the same way. Noah pawed around on some things, plunged some drains, flushed a bucket of water down the pipes, and voila. Now, I don't know if it will last, but by his inspection we know that my guess of "Shaken Plumbing Syndrome" may be correct (he didn't see any broken pipes), and we can just rent a snake and snake out that drain going out from our bathroom, and that may do it.
Which is very good news.
The termites are bad news, but it's localized and fixable. And had it not been for this plumbing problem, we never would have known that there were termites eating our house.
Noah & Monica will be married this September.
(I was trying to make it sound like an AP article that ends with some simple one-liner of background information.)


Mike & Viv, Jon & Amy, Heather & Zach,
Me & Sean (Ferra and Jeff not pictured)

Zach, Dominique, and Heather
Heather and Zach came over for dinner yesterday, then we all headed out to see Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. I really liked it - it was very Charlie Kaufman.
I'm reading this really interesting book called "Live From New York" about the history of Saturday Night Live. It's great because it has everyone involved in the show talking about each subject: how they met, the try-outs, who's doing who, who did what drugs. The only people who didn't contribute to the book are dead or Eddie Murphy. Did you know that Lorne Michaels was THIRTY when he started the show? No wonder they were all so coked up.
Anyway, the book is fascinating, even if you weren't a huge fan of the show.

Happy 28th to Jeff and Happy 30th to Cathy! Two birthday parties!

Jeff gets a Homer

...and he has Samantha

Cathy did studly shots
I went to Shell station and decided to purchase the expensive drive-thru car wash option, because my car was hit sometime a couple weeks ago (back right corner of the bumper - nothing major - just some scrapes) and I wanted to wash the car and see how much was paint scraped off and how much was actually scrapage that would wash off.
I pull around to the back to enter the car wash, and there's a cargo van in front of me, so I wait. And wait. Then I realize there's no one in the van, it's just parked right in front of the machine where you dial the code then pull in.
I walked into the station and said "Who has the van blocking the car wash?"
And this very strange house-smarmy-type woman says, slowly: "Oh! heh heh well uhhh heh heh, you see, heh, there's a slight problem, ehhh, heh heh, we can't get the van, out of park, heh heh, so we're uhhhh, heh, calling a tow truck." Okay now read that last quote REAAAALLLLLY SLLOWWWWLLY and whispery, like an old Buttheadette, and that's what it sounded like. Halfway through her sentence I was ready to shake her and say "WHAT? WHAT!?"
I also wanted to ask her if she tried depressing the brake while shifting the van out of park, but I figured the question would sound better coming from a tow-truck guy.
When I returned to my car there were three cars behind mine, all annoyed. I had to give them the news. They were not happy. We all drove away with our car wash codes and dirty vehicles.
Then I went to two birthday parties.
(I insist that you download this song!) removed - thanks for playin!
P.S. JJ Jackson, original MTV VJ, just died of a heart attack.


Jon & Amy's card catalog/wine storage

Distributing Mariners tickets

Kolja, Jon, Josh, Me, Matt, Emily, Monica, Noah
This afternoon the 6rmsers gathered to distribute their season tickets for the M's. This has been a tradition for quite a few years now, and it's surprisingly amicable. After everyone's schedules were filled, Josh and Emily informed us as to why they didn't take any tickets after mid-September: Emily is due with her first baby on October 10.
We all went out to Six Arms to celebrate (haha).
I would also like to point out that Kolja took that picture on the left by holding his arm way behind his head. He did an excellent job!

Those of you who requested my Frankenstein Mix (Erika, Matt, Tracy, Cyndi, and Estella) are also receiving a big hunk of Rice Krispie treat via Tuppermail™. I am mailing them out this afternoon. And Graham is receiving a care package of CD's that are no less than one year old. Thankfully, there is no food in his envelope.
It was really windy and cool today, but the sun is shining bright, and I SO look forward to spring.
This Saturday night a bunch of us are getting together to see Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind and I'm excited. I've been looking forward to this film for a while, because I really appreciate Jim Carrey's more serious work. I liked Doing Time on Maple Drive (a FOX made-for-TV movie) where he played an alcoholic son of a perfect family (and this is when he was still on In Living Color) and The Truman Show.

Well lookie there
It lives (and it seems like SO long ago).

Tonight I thought I might go to the Weblogger Meetup. I got home from work at six, unwound for a bit, then saw Jalen sleeping on the bed. I snuggled and rested my head on his belly, then Dominique curled up on my left arm.
Then it was 8 pm on my bedside clock. I guess I was tired.
Cyndi sent me an e-mail regarding a quiet, late-night drive by herself last night. The 80's radio station played "Father Figure" by George Michael, and she had a vivid memory of our life in 1988. She remembered driving in her car from the UNLV dorms (our hangout for much of our senior year in high school) on a night much like last night. She's now a wife and mother of two girls, and she mentioned how her life is significantly different now.
But I am in Seattle, and she still has Vegas; my life is significantly different too.

Las Vegas, Millennium New Year's Eve

For a Limited Time!
Here are the latest two songs I have in heavy rotation. (03-19-04: removed. Thanks for playin'!)

• I had a good hair day today. I wore a toque all day, and when I took my hat off at 6 pm I said "oh! cute!" so my question is, how would I pull this off on a daily basis? Esp. in the summer?
• I've been modeling sleepwear for the sake of a contest. Here's the results.
• Today the guy in charge of the Broadview Green Grid Project (you know, all that environmental construction in my neighborhood I've been bitching/bragging about for two years) sent me a pleasant reply e-mail from this mini-rant that I sent him Friday. And instead of replying "yes, of course, thank you" I had some fourth-grade creative writing flashback* where I typed until I was done and hit send and then thought "what did I just do?"
What I did was mention monkeys and Shaken Plumbing Syndrome and him Rock Paper Scissoring with me to see who has to crawl under my house.
So I may have a new friend! And he used the word 'scuz'!
*This is actually much better than if I had a freshman-year-in-college creative writing flashback, because then I would've been writing about funerals and broken mirrors and drunk people.

Evidence of cute hair
(on the phone w. Estella)
• Today I was at work and it was time for my second dose of Midol for the day, and I reached into my purse and didn't find the Midol. This was very upsetting. So I checked my lunch bag and my coat pockets and my purse again. I never found the Midol but I did find some wedding favors for Glen and Lara's Wedding. Don't remember that one, eh? Yeah, me neither - I had to look it up.
It was December 6th of last year.
I know I know, it could be worse. But it was those butter patty mints, whatever you call them, the ones you press into a form and they're kinda melty, plus a few M&M's, thrown into a darling little mesh bag that someone spent all weekend putting together, so darling in fact that I ended up with FIVE of them in my purse three+ months later.
But then that got me thinking - spill it. Look in your purse or messenger bags and tell me what you found that made you smack your forehead.
Today will be an interactive day here on Daymented. Unless no one comments.

I'm sorry I'm being so quiet - I've been cleaning up files without updating my recent file!
We watched 24 Hour Party People with Matt and Nanda last night, and I scarfed on pizza and pasta salad. Then I made an espresso milkshake in their blender, but when I picked up the pitcher, the base stayed in the machine, so the whole milkshake plopped on the machine and countertop. I leave my mark wherever I go.
Today was grocery shopping and watching Maple Leafs hockey. Sean is now at a Seattle Hockey game with Jon, who's back from Baseball Spring Training (with Amy).
Joe called us today, but I don't know where he was (Australia still?) because Sean talked to him.
The sun was out today, it was clear and beautiful. We will have to mow the lawn by next weekend.
I think I'll make Sean some cupcakes now.

Glory Be, the Dang Road is Paved
Here's the party in front of my house as I tried to leave for work this morning. That's my house to the right of the... flatbed thing.
Our shower is reacting to the construction in a weird way - it clogs and fills up with water in seconds. We think it's from the giant earth shaker machinery that they've been using to... do... whatever they're doing. Settle the dirt below the pavement? Well, whatever it is, it makes the house vibrate, and things that don't usually clang now go clang at 7:30 a.m. But we're having excellent bowel movements.
Our home's plumbing, on the other hand, now needs to have an excellent bowel movement.

8:00 a.m.
Upon coming home from work, the first thing I noticed was the Lack of the Bulldozer. Then, how trashed the lawn is where the Bulldozer sat for months. But it's gone, and now is a time of regrowth and some other spiritually positive language.
I can't believe the difference the lack of large machinery makes. I can see my neighborhood! And today was sunny!
Tonight West Wing wasn't on (whaaa?) and I ended up watching Extreme Makeovers; apparently I was just desperate to watch television tonight. At the end, I was so happy for these people that I got teary.
Please tell me it's PMS.

5:30 p.m. (ahhhhh)


Kick ass!
Monday night after our Book Club meeting (The Master and Margarita - which is translated from Russian. And trust me - the translator can make or break a book. Heather, Kate, and Stacey were all "Yeah! And wasn't it funny when..." and "I especially liked the part where..." and Janelle and I were clueless because we read the same book, but our version was more... Russian) Heather and I both coasted down the side of Samammish willing our cars to make it to the next gas station (Dad: "Does your gas meter work?" Me: "Um, yeah.") So she's putting gas in the stand behind me and "KICK ASS! Check out your SCREEN!" and there's CNN on the little gas TV, with sound and all, keeping us informed on the Martha Stewart hilarity trial. Then I talked to the gas station clerk about Las Vegas, because he wants to move there.
Then I tried to listen to Matthew's radio show, but it was all static, and I figured it would come in at any time, but when I got home, I realized I was still listening to pure static.

Sean at Azteca* tonight.    (*We had a coupon.)

Cyndi & I in 1988
My step-brother Todd turned 21 yesterday. You should have heard the commotion in the background when I called him last night at his Frat House to wish him Happy Birthday. He always ends his calls with "loveyoubye" but last night it was "LOOOOOOOOOVE YOOOOOOOOOOOU!!!! I LOVE you!!!"

The Healing Process
Yup. Here they are... rain lamps. Sammy (who lived in Nevada) had similar flashbacks here.

On another subject, I've asked many people how to fix the situation of my lost Outlook contacts and calendar appointments, and to no avail. So this is my cry for help.

My Brain is Panting
So I'm in the car last week with Dad and Kay, and John Richards on KEXP plays "Pictures of Matchstick Men" and Dad says "This is a good song" and then the more he listens to it, he realizes that it's not the original, even though it sounds dang close. He states that they didn't stray too far from the original, and that he grew up with this song, and I said "I grew up with this song, the 80's version" and he asks "Who is this?" and all hell broke loose in my brain.
I couldn't think of who it was.
Now this may not seem like that big of a deal to some of you, but when I forget any music knowledge, especially from my own generation, it drives me batty. It's probably the majority of "smarts" in my brain, so it's imperative that I not lose this stuff. So I do what I always do when I can't think of a word. I go through the alphabet.
A-Z helped me none, so then, while driving, I'm going through Aa-Zz. Although I only got to Dead Milkmen and Dead or Alive and Death Cab For Cutie and got sidetracked.
When I was in the Ca's, I thought Camarosmith and Candy Flip and Cabaret Voltaire and Catherine Wheel and moved right along to C+C Music Factory and Ce Ce Peniston and Celine Dion (It's my brain, I can't help it) and never went back.
Much later that night, I struggled with it again. I mean, when I forget something that I KNOW I KNEW, it just HURTS. We'd gone to bed about 20 minutes earlier, and Sean was just slipping into that relaxed, loud breathing stage of sleep, when I whispered:
"Baby! Who sang 'Pictures of Matchstick Men' and 'Take the Skinheads Bowling'?"
(Sound of intense, silent thinking while trying his darndest to not wake up too much.)
(me, as soon as he said "cam") "CAMPER VAN BEETHOVEN! It's Camper Van Beethoven!"
So a few days later, I'm still dwelling on this. Not the song or the band really, just trying to figure out where that brain cell went. Do you ever think that way? "On what day did I finally forget some phone number that I had memorized for years?" Or, "What did all those piano lessons get replaced with?"
For instance, my brain is chatting through this, and I start thinking of Things I Still Remember, all of which have beaten out All The Algebra I Ever Learned.
The first thing I thought of, I don't know why, was from fifth grade: Allison Graham's Mom's name was Noni Kaylor, her step-Dad was Dick Kaylor, they drank cans of Coke, we sang Sheena Easton "Morning Train" in their dark brown dining room by the 21 table. Her dog was "Tuffy" and she had an Uncle Gary, her phone number (which I won't post here because her Mom may still have that number), and then... THEN! I remembered the most intensely locked brain cell of all.
The lamp.
Allison's grandparent's house had this lamp. Ohmygod, this lamp.
Inside was a miniature roman statue. Surrounding this statue were what looked like guitar strings, forming a sort of "bird cage" around the statue. This lamp dripped oil down these strings in a constant drip. Its was horrifying in its Old Vegas Mafia-ness. I think there may have even been fake flowers on top of it. It belonged in most older homes in Vegas. With heavy curtains and ashtrays and air conditioning.
I can't shake it. I've looked all over the internet trying to find you a picture but Googling "drippy lamp" and "oily lamp" isn't doing it.
This will be my brain's tangent until I find this lamp. It was just so foul, I need to reconnect with it. I need to know its history. I need to understand.
And it somehow beat out Camper Van Beethoven. Unbelievable.

Sarah's Baby Shower

Sarah's pregnant!

Me, Sarah, Fernanda


Nanda & Cole

Too much excitement

Osh Kosh Cuteness

Sarah & her Grandma

Tiny shoes!

Sarah's happy Mom

We painted onesies

Brittany the old, old dog

My Dominique has much more armpit hair than necessary
Yesterday I stayed in my pajamas until about six pm. And I don't regret it. After I finally snapped out of it, I headed to Barnes & Noble to pick up Diary of a Wombat (the children's book I love) and then continued my trend of doing Not Much.
Today, after Sarah's Baby Shower, I came home and took a nap for two hours.
I love my life.
P.S. Dad & Kay? Did you make it home okay??

Lovely dinner with friends last night to celebrate Sean's birthday.

So I got these pens in my Dirty Bingo gift set (it also included some great coloring books and an Alaska T-shirt). There are two levers behind each frog, which control the punches (kinda like those punching puppets). I got one green frog pen and one blue fog pen. This was good enough.
So they sit around for all this time, and I finally use one of the pens to write something down, and it lights up when you press the pen on paper! Joy of all scoring bonus joys! These pens went from cute to genius in a split second.
And this, friends, tells you just how simple I am.

Restaurant Photos
Here's us eating at Zao Monday night. We got a lot of eating done in the last week!
Dad and Kay left early this morning (and quietly! I never woke up!). We decided that they need to come out for at least a week in warmer weather next time, so we can do all the things we wanted to do. We never even went to Seattle Center (Space Needle) or Ballard or Fremont or West Seattle.
Or Six Arms. (shame!)
Yesterday morning we went to Friday Harbor on the most perfect day out of Dad & Kay's visit. It was sunny and mostly clear and warm. The ferry ride was beautiful but a lot of Friday Harbor was closed.
Here's Dad & Kay where we had lunch as soon as we docked. After this we wandered along the little town looking at gift shops and book stores and cafes, then we hung out at a park until the ferry came back. While I was at one of the book stores, I discovered The Diary of a Wombat, which I will own some day.
It was awesome.
After a long day of ferrying and driving, we got home in enough time to get ready for Sean's birthday dinner.
We went to Bick's Broadview Grill right by our house (if you read that link, they mention the sesame-crusted halibut, which I'm eating, and the flat-top chicken, which Sean's eating. We also had the desserts mentioned in the article). We love that restaurant.
I looked at a few places for the Frankie Goes to Hollywood "Welcome to the Pleasuredome" CD to no avail. I know, haha very funny, but we've been pining for the song "Crisco Kisses" and we wanted the whole CD. I didn't order it online in time for Sean's birthday, but I realize that someone, somewhere (Scott?) may have that CD. If you do, please let me know.
On that note, I need to thank a few people:
Elfcakes for the homemade cookies. Tara at Burning Paper for the Outcast CDs. TYD and Flipdingo for the "Daymented Stripes" candle.
Those who have Frankenstein Mix CDs coming your way (you know who you are) lemme get through this week and then I'll get them in the mail.


Dad already bored with the Academy Awards Red Carpet interviews

Kay & Jalen

A wedding at Columbia Crest winery!

Us sampling wine at Chateau Ste. Michelle winery
Still too busy to talk to the likes of any of you. Today we are taking the ferry to Friday Harbor (and replacing the muffler in my car!).
More later, I promise. Dad and Kay leave early tomorrow morning.