Now, can anyone come here and paint stripes for me, pleeeeze. Straight stripes. With clean margins. And, um, tomorrow. Anyone?! Because I think I'm in over my head.
Below are a few videos from this past weekend. It was 5 degrees when we went for a walk in the woods, but sunny, so it felt warmer. We had the reservoir to ourselves. It was so nice and peaceful. Except for the incessant crunching sound that can virtually drown out any other sounds, that is.
You may notice that Sophie Dog's right rear foot is wrapped. Remember her Big Owie? Well, it just hadn't been healing properly and kept bleeding. So I would tape it up and then I cut a heavy fleece sock to fit and would put that over her foot, trying to keep it protected. Alas, it didn't work, and her poor toe kept bleeding.
Well - those of you who are squeamish, please close your eyes for this part - Sophie Dog had to have a little surgery on Tuesday for an unrelated matter involving her hind quarters and what is possibly the world's most digusting part of a dog, her anal sacs. Since Sophie Dog is on the excitable side, she would "express" her anal sacs frequently, even while dreaming! If you've never had to deal with this in your dog, count your blessings. If you have, you know how the smell can almost make you vomit. After many trips to the vet over the last year, it was decided it was time to have them out. So she had a bit of surgery on her bum, and at the same time, the vet opted to do a little more surgery on her troublesome toe. As it turns out, the nail was more severely damaged than they originally thought, so it's now completely gone, and this time should heal.
So poor Sophie Dog has had a rough week. But she's starting to feel better and should be chasing tennis balls and sticks in a couple of weeks again. If only it would warm up here.
Sophie & The Big Stick
Yesterday I had a strong urge to just lounge on the couch eating bon-bons while reading my growing stack of magazines, which I can never seem to get through. Here's what's piling up right now:
Today is National Donor Day -- a day to give the gift of life.
I've been tagged for this meme by my friend Hot Anne. Since I was naughty and skipped the last one, I'll do this one. However, I may break part of it (gasp!).
The Book Meme.
1. Pick up the nearest book of at least 123 pages.
2. Open the book to page 123.
3. Find the 5th sentence.
4. Post the next 3 sentences.
5. Tag 5 more people.
OK, the nearest book is "Health Behavior and Health Education: Theory, Research and Practice, 3rd Edition," but I'm gonna take a pass on that, as I wouldn't want to bore you with grad school stuff. (Page 123, by the way, explores the concepts of how stage theories approach the issue of explaining and changing behavior.)
So let's pretend a much better book was close at hand:
"Paradise of the Blind," by Duong Thu Huong. (If you look under the library section on the right-hand column of this page, you'll see it listed there.) The book's cover proclaims, "Banned in its own country, the first novel from Vietnam ever published in the United States." It's captivating. It's sort of a coming-of-age tale about a young Vietnamese woman who struggles to find her identity amidst family turmoil and poverty. (Mom and Fran, I think you'd like this one a lot too.)
OK, what were the rules again? Oh yes, page 123. Fifth sentence.
I have to fudge here a bit, too, because that lands sort of in the middle of a quote from a Vietnamese poet, so let's move on just a bit to this:
The young man flushed a drunken red as a vein in his neck pulsed. "But, chief, during the anti-American resistance, the southern soldiers left for the front singing Do Chieu's verses. Anyone who has even a bit of education and understands the South knows that Do Chieu is irreplaceable for our compatriots."
I'll tag these people who recently left comments on my site, but don't feel obligated, folks (hahah, that'll teach you to comment, eh?!):
Lina (but not Ole)
Tammy and Ray
For those interested, you can read more about Paradise of the Blind:
Here (This is interesting. The publisher's site notes similar books include A Tree Grows in Brooklyn. A classic. And another coming-of-age story. Neat.)
My friend Maria (among others) wondered how the VIP event at BRU went the other night. Well, in a word: crap. It was, yes, crappy. There was no red carpet, as promised. There was a line to get in (mind you, it was about 27 thousand degrees below zero), there was a line for the food (which looked like it consisted of an extra-long sub sandwich being passsed off as hors d'oeuvres), it was elbow-to-elbow crowded (I heard one salesperson say they didn't expect such a big crowd. Really? When you promise free food and giveaways?!), there was no free gift bag (it was shove-your-way-to-the-free-samples, which consisted of about three different things including a ... pen), and they claimed there was a raffle winner announced every half-hour but I didn't hear a single one in the entire hour I was there. To top it off, the coupons we got are the same coupons anyone gets. And worse, a rumor suddenly undulated through the
angry crowd that BRU was giving 10 percent off our entire purchase, which was the only thing that could have made up for this fiasco. Alas, it was not true. A pox on whoever started that rumor. (I did buy two packets of on-sale onesies, though, and a pacifier. Woo-hoo!)
The only saving grace for the evening was that I got to spend some quality time with a few other girlfriends who are all at some stage in adoption themselves. And I got to hold Sophia. Yay me!
No, I haven't decided on a name yet. But here's a question for you:
Let's say you have a name you like, but the initials spell out a word. Would you still go with that name or find something else? Or does it matter what word the initials spell out? Like if the initials spelled out VIP (OK, that's not really a word, but work with me here people), that might not be so bad. But what if they were HOG or TUB or JAM or ZIT or something else that you ate or picked at? What would you do? (WWYD?) Or maybe the better question is WWOD, or WWOD?
Read this adoption story, linked below, from USA Today. It discusses what we have seen anecdotally via blogs about international adoption lately and what my friends and I have been talking about -- people jockeying to find "greener grass" in a different country or turning to adoption in the U.S. (speaking about Americans here, that is). I think there is good and bad to this.
You have to do some serious soul searching when you change your international adoption plans, to say the least. It's a powerful thing when our adoption horizons expand for all the right reasons. We consider new possibilities that allow us not only to learn more about our wondrous capacity to love but that create new opportunities for those who are waiting for us to find them, and then who in turn continue to lead us to new discoveries about ourselves.
I haven't complained about the weather in a while (OK, maybe a week or so), so here's a snapshot of the current conditions:
This is the crib my dad told me that he and my mom were going to get for the baby:
Some of you have heard about the new film called "Adopted: The New American Family," whose early 2008 release the adoptive community is eagerly awaiting.
Below is some information about the film and video excerpts. It's must-read, must-see for all whose lives are touched by adoption. You can read more at the film's Web site.
From the Web site:
About the Film
Angelina Jolie, Madonna and other celebrities have made transracial adoption one of the top pop culture stories of the year. People magazine featured adoption stories on five covers during the past year; the Web and blogosphere are filled with photos of celebrities’ adopted babies; and news programs and talk shows do regular reports on international adoption.
But while celebrities have driven recent media coverage of adoption, the issue has actually affected millions of Americans for decades.
Adopted: The New American Family goes beyond the hype to examine transracial adoption through two real stories. The first follows John and Jacqui as they begin the adoption process and then fly to China to meet their daughter Min Xin Pei. The second story shifts perspective to follow Jen, an adult Korean adoptee raised by white parents who struggles to find her identity while coping with her adoptive mother’s terminal illness. By telling these stories, and by interviewing adoption counselors, social workers and activists, this film will inform, provoke discussion, and give voice to the various people and perspectives touched by the phenomenon of transracial adoption in the United States.
How “Adopted: The New American Family” Came to Be
Director Barb Lee and her production partner Nancy Kim Parsons had always wanted to explore the increasingly popular trend of international adoption in America, an issue they know particularly well as Korean adoptees themselves. With this deeply personal understanding, they set out to create a documentary that told the story of two families at different points along the adoption journey.
In the end, both Barb and Nancy hope to inform, educate, and challenge the viewer’s preconceived notions of not only adoption, but of family as a whole.
Video Excerpts from "Adopted: The New American Family."
Trailer for the documentary "Adopted: The New American Family", which will be released in early 200:
(Note: This clip has an instance of R-rated sexual concepts.)
Dr. Joseph Crumbley the importance of not only speaking to your children about culture, but also race:
Dr. Richard Lee dicusses an adoptee's sense of beauty in a transracial household:
Jen, an adult Korean adoptee, talks with her parents about being called names:
Dr. Joseph Crumbley tells of meeting with adopted Chinese children and learning about their experiences with racism:
Dr. Ron Federici talks about how even in "nice" orphanages, children often experience post-traumatic stress:
Dr. Richard Lee dicusses common stereotypes about Asian American men and women:
While many adoptees report a great sense of love and mutual respect shared with their adoptive parents, some describe a lack of cultural competency within their families, and cultural disconnect and confusion leading to resentment.
Now the increasingly vocal community of adult transracial adoptees has begun to come together to identify the best practices in transracial adoption and to better prepare future parents for issues facing adoptees. Through Web sites, books and blogs, they are sharing their stories to improve the experiences of others - children and parents alike.
Apparently UPS Guy now thinks I'm pathetic and homebound. He showed up at my door late this afternoon -- after also stopping by yesterday with my stroller (!) -- to deliver what turned out to be a delightful gift (thanks, Sallie!!) but instead of just handing it over he had to engage in some social commentary.
UPSG: "Don't you ever leave your house?"
ME: [Look of confusion]
ME: But I work from home!
UPSG: [Gestures to my driveway]
UPSG: You don't even have any tire tracks in your driveway and it snowed on Monday!
ME: Uh, uh ... But I work from home. I don't have to go anywhere.
ME: And my snowblower is broken. It's in the shop. I can't shovel. Bad shoulder, you know? [mumbling]
UPSG: [walks to his truck with a backward glance at the huge drifts on the tire-track-less driveway]
Pathetic, right? It's true that I have not been out of the house since Monday morning when I took the dog to the vet, which I could have walked to if it wasn't 20 degrees below zero and 45 below with windchill and if Sophie didn't have a big owie because it's only 6 blocks from my house. So no, I have not technically left my house since Monday morning at 8:50 am. and it is now Friday morning at 12:24 a.m. But really, I don't think that should be fodder for UPS Guy to diss me. Even if I happened to be wearing a brightly striped turtleneck under a beigy plaid fuzzy sweater. Who cares about fashion when it's so dang cold?! And it's not as if UPS Guy with his "brown" is so fashionable, either. But of couse, the saddest part is that UPS Guy is a cutie, brown clothing or not.
Fortunately my repaired snowblower was delivered this afternoon.
I immediately went out and obliterated the evidence.