I adore these friendship bracelets, now updated with beads and jewels, for the adult girls we've become.  I spent many weeks' allowance on embroidery floss for  cotton friendship bracelets in junior high.  They are still pretty.  Did I ever even give them away to any friends? Or just make them for myself? I can't really remember.

By DoloresPetunia on Etsy.  She has a few other items I covet here and here.  But my pocket book probably has to grow up a little more first. 
There are some things that I see on Pinterest (the equivalent of a bookmark/picture book world for grown women) and I wonder... who the hell has the time???!!  AAAAGGGGGHHHH!
But then I remember that I probably used to be the person that had the time for these types of things.  (Photo above is described as "cute snack.")

Today Jason called me from work and asked me what I was doing (which seems kind of an obvious answer, "working") I instead sarcastically said, "Making big bucks. Living the dream."  On the drive home I realized that I am "living the dream."  Busy important career; cute kid; husband; great home; living in a great city... just no time to make cute snacks, I guess.   But I am glad for all that I have.  I will take the cute kid over the cute snack. 

( ... )

I find it funny when the best part of an article is within the parenthesis. 

Since "parent" has become a new, central part of my identity, the NY Times is suggesting parenting articles like this one on how moms and dads are choosing "buddy" more often as an affectionate knickname for kids, unlike the "son," or "sweetheart" of years gone by.  

I had to laugh, and sort of give credence to this parenthetical explanation:

(Another possible explanation proposed by Mr. Carpenter’s group: years of watching “Gilligan’s Island” left the term “little Buddy,” the Skipper’s nickname for Gilligan, lodged in their brains. Or maybe it was the jingle from those 1980s commercials for the “My Buddy” doll.)       

I did watch A LOT of Gilligan's Island growing up. And doesn't Calvin kind of look like Gillagan in his sun hat?

Mother Load

I left work today thinking about the literal (and figurative) burdens of being a worker, mom, and wife.  See my burden: dry cleaning, laptop back pack, messenger bag disguising breast pump, and obscured behind dry cleaning was also my lunch bag - to allow me to work through lunch.  I'm a freaking burro, people! It was so noteworthy that I had to snap a pic in the in reflection of the elevator doors.
Years ago I was picking up some stuff for a work event at a convenience store and I was apparently so expertly balancing my load of goods that another woman commented, "I can tell you must be a mom!"  At the time I wasn't, but now I totally know what she meant.  With all that load, note that I still did have a free hand for my phone.

I know that some little subconscious part of me must be ready for fall when I start thinking about jackets and sweaters with elbow patches.  Or maybe I just miss my professor Dad?
Correlated with the fact that the other day I came home and was really happy to put on a pair of socks, I think it must be about looking forward to the cooler days of autumn (already!)    I don't really have any significant Dad-sock memories. 

Find Your Greatness

In high school I had a Nike ad on my bedroom wall. (And it was even before, "Just Do It.")
And they prove their ability to inspire and motivate again with their Olympic ads, encouraging you to "Find your Greatness."
The ads focus on how everyone has their own "peak performance" even if it's not in qualifying Olympic trial time.  Even if it's just that I managed that 5k with under 10 minute miles.

The person I admire at the gym isn't usually the hot girl in the midriff-baring sports bra (hate her, actually) or the muscular weight lifter, but rather, the really overweight girl who's been there every week, patiently toiling on the machines.  The person who has a longer journey ahead of them, but is showing up anyway...finding their greatness.  Like this other ad from Nike. 

Let's add this to life lessons for Calvin.

Art in Public Places

The "All Creatures Great and Small" exhibit at the Atlanta airport makes me happy. When I was having a bad moment of being peppered by work emails with ridiculous, ADHD type requests and managing still being a breast feeding mother who travels (hello, bathroom stalls and breast pump), this penguin made me happy.
Three thoughts:
1. I really enjoy art in public places.
2. The art of self taught artists is always neat.
3. I need to spend some more time at museums, it seems to have gotten away from me. I shall put the Georgia Museum of Art on the list for a someday visit. Until then, thank you Terminal T.

Afterthought to "Competitive"

This seemed to appear in my Pinterest thread in timely fashion after my last post.


I once told my old boss, probably with a shrug of my shoulders, while nonchalantly crossing my legs, that, "...I'm not really competitive."  He rolled his eyes and choked back laughter.  I sat up straight, "Wait, really? You think I am a competitive person?"  He laughed like I was joking, insisting that I wasn't in it to win it.
At baby swim class they make us swim a lap of the pool holding our babies above water.  The idea being that if your child were to fall in the water, you could save them with confidence. Say "I got this," and paddle safely to shore.
Me & Calvin @ Swim Class: Winners!
I realized today that I am competitive.  After all the parents lined up at one end of the pool to swim our lifesaving laps, I was the one who'd made it to the halfway point while the others were dawdling at a quarter to a third of the way there.  I looked back and nearly scoffed.  "Are these guys even trying?"  I caught myself thinking... at baby swim class.  

I am competitive.
Though I would prefer to frame it as a commitment to high achievement. 

Follow Clairest

When people tell you that your child will be your "everything" I sometimes wish they'd been more candid -- or I had better capability to realize -- that, at least in the beginning, they may be your only thing.

With a new little baby many things have gone by the wayside including: showers on Sundays; The Daily Show & The Colbert Report; looking at myself in the mirror before I go out the door; dinners that are any more complex than two ingredients; and blogging.

I've barely managed a post once or twice a month. As someone who's kept a diary fairly constantly since I received a pink paisley fabric-covered journal for Christmas in fifth grade, I miss it. Maybe you have missed me too?

So, I invite you to follw me over to micro-blogging at tumblr. I am hopeful that this version of clairest will still allow the outlet, even if it's just a photo from my phone or a brief thought.

But let's be patient with this experiment.


This made me laugh out loud, and sometimes I wish I had this guy over my shoulder too... in meetings, on public transportation.

One Thing To Know About Snow

To the guy on the shuttle bus tonight who rolled his eyes at me when I commented to a friend, "Yes, lake effect snow is really a problem on the east side of lakes, like in Indiana," please read this: "Winds accompanying Arctic air masses generally blow from a west or northwest direction, causing lake effect snow to fall on the east or southeast side of lakes."
Next time you want to give a superior and smug, "you don't know what you're talking about" look, please make sure you know what you are talking about! Or at least make sure I don't see your little smirk.
That is all.

Worth It

Remember how I spent the last few days of my pregnancy cobbling together a mobile to go over Calvin's changing table? Well, I think it may have been one of the most worthwhile activities I did to prepare for baby. Childbirth class was also helpful, of course.

Calvin *loves* that darn thing. Some days, when nothing is working to assuage him, we just put him on the changing pad and he delights in the mobile. Sometimes for longer than a half hour! Turn down your volume before you play this video, particularly if you are at work, as Calvin has learned how to squeal.

Maybe (if time permits) this might be a fun next addition to the ceiling, via Say Yes to Hoboken.Though I think I might need to know "when to say when" with the nursery decorating.

The Time Has Come

All of the things that I'd hoped we get from The Jetsons in my lifetime flying cars was my number one wish. As someone who's now older and has a house to keep clean, Rosie the Housecleaning Robot is my most practical desire. (Sorry Roomba, while you are helpful with cat hair, your capabilities are still far behind! Rosie would be so helpful to have around.)But instead what we got is video phone calls. Particularly with our recent acquisition of iPhone 4S' with "Facetime" Jason and I are literally seeing a lot more of our distant friends.

It was funny to dial my sister (on her husband's iPhone) and see her quickly pull her hair out of its ponytail and give it a quick tousle as we greeted each other. I know I spent a few minutes of every holiday Skype call trying to inconspicuously fix my hair when I spied a stray curl in the mini video box. On really bad days I used Calvin's large head as my camouflage - he's who everyone really wants to see anyway, right?

It makes me wish that with the video phone calls we could have each gotten the Jane Jetson morning phone mask. I'm sure this was on Steve Jobs' list because even I remembered it from my young days watching cartoons.

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