Archive | October, 2010

Commitment Phobia

28 Oct

Where oh where do I begin!? What I’ve come to realize is that we have a major problem making life-altering decisions! I started writing a list of questions and just babbling about them all but I think for your sanity, I’m going to just deal with one of them right now. I picked the most exciting one. Well, I think its the most exciting.

Have you ever considered that maybe you don’t have to live your life like everyone else does? I think about it ALLLL the time. James hears about it all the time and over the years I think he’s sort of changed how he thinks about things as a result. Most people don’t really take us seriously when we talk about this kind of thing and they sort of blow it off as fantasizing. Well I’m here to tell you, we are totally serious. S0 anyway, what is this fascinating decision that we’re pondering?

It’s the Brangelina decision!

We seriously want to travel the world with our kids. Long term. There are lots of permutations of this particular concept and most of them are appealing to us. We don’t want to be the people (definitely click on that and watch it) who stayed together because its comfortable, got married because a certain amount of time has passed, bought a house because that’s just what you do next, then got bored so we had some kids, etc, etc, then realized on our deathbed that we’d been on autopilot our entire lives. We want to see the seven wonders and show them to our kids. We want to experience new cultures, seek out new life and new civilizations.

We just want to be global citizens to some extent and share that experience with our children. Maybe we travel from one place to the next, staying in each place for an extended amount of time while we learn about the local culture and lifestyle. Maybe we set up a home base and take mini-vacations to various destinations. Maybe we go from place to place doing humanitarian work like building schools and volunteering. Maybe we spend 4 months a year in Pittsburgh, 4 months a year in Florida and 4 months a year chasing Winter on our snowboards. Maybe we buy a yacht and sail from place to place for a few years. Haha, just kidding on the yacht. My fear of sharks is alive and well. Just last Friday another shark attack story hit the news.

Seriously though, when you think about it, the world is your oyster. We are so deeply blessed to be who we are in every sense. For so many people, their most pressing issue every day is whether they will be able to find enough water, clean or not, to keep themselves and their families alive for another day. It seems almost wrong to squander our blessings and just mindlessly follow the prescribed path of the majority. I’m not trying to say that the “standard American life” is wrong per se, because there are many many people I love and respect who fit that description, but there is absolutely nothing about them that could be described as “mindless.”

But everything costs money, doesn’t it? And making choices means making sacrifices. Neither of us likes the whole idea of making sacrifices, but we also can’t live our lives in fear of making decisions like where to buy a house or how much to spend on one. It’s the one pesky decision that’s been chasing us all over the country. All of this has been swirling around us with all the other life-altering decisions we seem to be facing now and always, as we get to know the Pittsburgh real estate market. I seriously cannot wait until I can have a margarita again.

The Land Shrimp

21 Oct

Well, I call it a land shrimp anyway…which does exist (SHUDDER), but apparently this little creepy crawly is actually a centipede. I kid you not, I got the shivery, hair standing up on the back of my neck willies when I google image searched “centipede.” VIOLENT SHUDDER. Its still affecting me, just the memory of it.

Anyway…these things…apparently known to most people as “house centipedes” are ALL OVER the basement. I’ve seen a couple upstairs too, luckily only a total of 2. They range in size from very tiny to OHMYGODKILLITKILLITKILLIT. They are actually kind of fascinating and I just read in their wikipedia article that they eat other bugs such as spiders, bedbugs, termites, cockroaches, silverfish, and ants…among other unsavory insects. Soooo, I guess I should stop killing them. They just reaaaaally creep me out.

This is the first I’ve ever seen or heard of these guys, encountering them here. Welcome back to the East Coast! We have loooooots of bugs here!

Oh yeah…first instance of stinkbug on/in our FREAKING BED was this morning. GAH!

Raw Fear

19 Oct

I’ve been incubating this post for a few days now and its about time I got it out. Maybe this will give some of the non-parent types a little insight into why some of us momma types can get a little overprotective. Let me just lead off by saying, I know this is going to sound a little off the charts and I know some people will read this and think I need an emergency trip to the psychiatrist. Let me assure you that this is just par for the course for me. This is my whole life, its always been this intense for as long as I can remember. I am doing just fine and I assure you that I know well when its time to take a trip to the shrink. And furthermore, James keeps a close eye on me so don’t you worry. I told myself I wouldn’t censor myself on this blog or hold back…well, here’s my first leap of faith.

Sometimes I try to explain to people how much I love Dags and how earth-shattering her arrival was for me. Words pale in comparison to the utter fire that binds me to her. The intensity blends into my neurotic tendencies to create some of the most raw fear I have ever felt. The most recent example was about three days ago. I was feeling hormonal and kind of weepy as I took my late-night shower, when my mind wandered into familiar territory. I started contemplating what I would do if I lost Dags. This occurs in various forms  for me since the day she was born. Earlier in the week I couldn’t relax for my nap because…get this…I couldn’t resolve how I would handle it if Dags had been canyoning with us in the Dominican Republic and had been sucked under a rock like this one backpack we lost along the way. I vividly imagined what it might be like to allow myself to be sucked under with her, or to remain safe and try to get help, or what kind of elaborate rigging of ropes I could use to anchor myself while I went in after her. People, I am CRAZY. I know this, but while you haven’t had over 3 decades to get used to it, I have. Months ago, I went through a similar episode about what I would do if she fell into the tiger enclosure at The Denver Zoo. I contemplated buying rope to keep in the diaper bag. Don’t worry, I didn’t actually buy the rope. Yet.

But anyway, back to the shower. It hit me like a ton of bricks, the thought of losing her. Even though I can clearly visualize her as a young adult, I can’t shake the nagging fear of losing her somehow. I just dissolved into tears with almost no thought, the emotion just washed over me without words, without thoughts, without even the familiar images that sometimes pop into my head to elucidate some as yet ineffable emotion. Then slowly the thoughts came. Would I be able to ever be happy again? Would I want to take my own life? Would I be able to function? These questions get answered whether I like it or not. My mind just sinks itself into that reality and explores the full range of the experience and I have made scant progress with shutting the process down. I can shut down the tiger enclosure and I can shut down the canyoning…but things get pretty weird before I can shut down a full-blown existential crisis. So things went from how I would handle it to how I feel about the value of my own life in comparison to that of Dagny’s and in time, 2.0′s life. What is my purpose here? You know what I thought to myself? It became so clear to me that all of my hopes and dreams mean so much less to me now than facilitating Dagny’s hopes and dreams. First. She’s just first on the list. How does that happen? How is it possible that this little child can come in with all her potential and innocence and completely upend my whole paradigm. I had one. I had a paradigm of how I worked, what made me tick and how to deal with it all. I had a good idea of how I fit into the world and how I am tied to the rest of humanity. Then she came and supplanted the rest of humanity. Does this shit happen to everybody? Is this just my warped version of life that I’ve dealt with all along? Part of me is afraid to find out. Up until I hit the publish button I can safely assume that I’m normal, even though I strongly suspect that isn’t the case.

All of this…and then, what about 2.0? Is it becoming clearer now how terrifying the prospect of another earth-shift is for me? I almost want to say it might be like dying in the sense that everything is about to change and I have absolutely no clue what it will be like on the other side. I can speculate…but I already know from last time that the change is unfathomable. What I do know, is that when I think about ever losing Dags I now think about 2.0 and how I must struggle on toward peace of mind for his sake.

Love is a strange thing. I’ve always known that. Parental love is catastrophic. This is what I’ve learned.

May peace be with those who have loved and lost.

Dagny & Family Monthly Update

17 Oct

Happy Fall, Loved Ones!

Well, its Mid-October and we are getting more settled here in da ‘Burgh. Fall is absolutely gorgeous here, and it seems almost everyone shares my obsessive affinity for the harvest season and especially Halloween. I really do love it, but I have been missing the dry breeze, intense sunshine and all my mommy friends (and Dagny’s playmates) of Colorado very much. I also miss the Rocky Mountains…seeing them every day. I’ve always fantasized that if you were to climb and climb as high as you could climb there would be a secret staircase that would lead you to heaven.*  So in that sense, I feel a bit farther away from “God” as it were. I’ve been actively trying to cultivate my sense of “God” in the northeast and I may need more time. It took time for me to feel that way about the Rockies, too.
Anywho! What has been happening with us? Quite a bit actually.The last Dagny Update I sent out was Aug 25th.
The last few days of August blended right into September. We spent most of our time in August trying to unpack and settle in, so there isn’t much to report, really. I’ve got the link to the photo album in there (just click on the word August) in case I added any new pics to the August album since I last sent it out.
September was exciting for a few reasons. First…Halloween got closer and closer! But other than that a few things happened. I had 2 prenatal appointments and everything is going as expected. I also attended a big social media event here in Pittsburgh called Podcamp. It was really cool and as a result I finally took the plunge into blogging, as you can see! I wrote a post JUST on Podcamp a few weeks ago, so if you are curious about it, just pop on over and read that post.
Things have gone from obliviously pregnant to OMG this sucks pregnant. In reality I probably feel a LOT better than a LOT of people do at this stage in the game, but its become considerably harder to carry Dags around and since I am too chicken to let her go up and down the stairs on her own, I carry her up and down every. single. time. Actually, I have started to let her go up ahead of me lately because its getting seriously uncomfortable lugging my whale of a self up there with her on my hip. But yeah, the third trimester is here in full force. Putting on socks is becoming pretty unpleasant, as is heaving myself out of bed several times a night for a pee break. But the good news is I can see the light at the end of the tunnel! Only a couple more months and I expect them to go by pretty fast with it being the holiday season and all.
Last week I had my 1 hour glucose test and I have been begging and pleading with the universe to let me pass it. However…on Friday I got an innocuous sounding call from my OB’s office and they want to talk to me about “nothing urgent.” That doesn’t bode well for me passing the test. I have another appointment on Wednesday of this coming week and I’ll get my Rhogam shot and most likely get told I have to take the 3 hour glucose tolerance test from hell. I’ve already gotten James to agree to take the day off so I can sleep all day afterwards. Last time around that test really really ruined my day. I felt this >< close to puking  ALL DAY. So I am totally dreading having to do it again.
Other pregnancy stuff coming up is our hospital tour on the 26th and on Nov 6 we are having our 3D ultrasound. It will be nice to confirm that 2.0 is a boy one more time because we both felt like the ultrasound tech sort of blew through that part during the anatomy ultrasound. I figure in 3D it should be pretty definitive. And I absolutely cannot wait to see his little face. I am convinced we’re going to have a mini-James…but I guess we’ll see. I’ve been having a tough time visualizing him in our lives whereas with Dags I always had the image of a little blonde chickadee running around and so she is.
Speaking of Dags, she had her 15 month checkup on Dan’s birthday the week before last. Shots (she got 3) are becoming harder because she is so much more aware. Her language skills are awesome and as some say, language is the container of thought. Her memory is incredible so I’m REALLY dreading that we have to make another appointment in only 3 months. Maybe we can do a 2 for 1 with 2.0′s first doctor visit! Things are going to be a lot more complicated by then. But we really love our new doctor in Squirrel Hill. She gave us lots of compliments so of course I loved her, haha! She was very impressed with Dagny’s development, her speech, her comprehension and just her general self. In other news potty-training continues to progress at a comfortable pace. For the most part she pretty much has it down to get poo’s in the potty but pee’s don’t seem to bother her enough for her to say, interrupt during dinner or while playing or while watching Signing Time. She does however hold her pee a lot while we’re out and about and so we try to take frequent potty breaks. Often the diaper is dry and she pees in whatever toilet, which is awesome.
A couple weeks ago James and I went to a charity event at The Scarehouse. You can read about it on the blog here. Last weekend we went to the Apple Festival at Soergel’s Orchard and had an absolute blast. The pictures and blog post tell most of the story, so check out the October Album (just click on the word October)…lots of good photos in there.
This weekend we’re heading to New Ken for Jim & Kelly’s birthday party. Next weekend is HALLOWEEN, woooo hooooo! We are going to Jim & Jamie’s neighborhood on Saturday for a Halloween Parade and Trick-or-Treating. I can’t freaking wait! Dags has an adorable lion costume that we picked out at TJ Maxx. Future Halloweens hopefully will involve more homemade costumes and decorations, but this year with the moving and being pregnant I just didn’t have the time or inclination. And honestly…I don’t expect to for the next 2-3 Halloweens down the road either. But after that!!! I promise! Things will get a lot more hands-on for everybody.
Since so much is happening next weekend, make sure to check the blog and the Facebook albums the in the following week.
Last but not least, here is the YouTube channel link again: Virtualcarly on YouTube. I will be updating that soon with a bunch of cute new videos!
Well, I guess that about wraps it up this time around. If I keep it up at this rate, the next update you’ll get will include our new addition! Hopefully I can do better these next few months. I am trying to post to the blog for your benefit at least once every week. Part of my hopes and dreams for the blog is that it kind of replaces the update emails over time and makes our goings-on seem more accessible to everyone. I’ve tried my best to strong-arm everyone into joining Facebook, but its just not working ;) I see the blog as a way to pull the stories and pictures together in one place that doesn’t require ANY kind of account, that is accessible to EVERYONE. You can lurk or you can participate through comments or you can do a little of both with anonymous comments (I still see the email you enter though, so not totally anon.) I hope it makes us seem closer and makes you feel more connected to our life as it is happening. And through your comments & interactions on the blog, I hope that we feel your presence in our lives more often as well. So much changes in just 2 months and I hope this project will bring us all closer together and create weekly exchanges rather than quarterly! And of course with the blog its a little less invasive than me bombarding everyone with an email every few months. I would love to hear everyone’s thoughts on this so please drop me a line and let me know!

*Turns out, there’s really just a bunch of bottomless crevasses leading to certain icy death up there, right Penny? ;)

Cute Story Meow

15 Oct

Here’s a couple of cute little stories for you. These are told secondhand from memory, so cut me some slack.

A week or so ago James and I were talking about cute things Dagny does, as we often do these days. He told me the sweetest little story. One night as he was putting her to bed, she had fallen asleep with his hand on her back. He was just at the point where after taking his hand away, and he had stood up to stretch his back. He heard a noise and wondered to himself whether it was Dags, that maybe she hadn’t really been asleep. So he leaned his head waaaay down into the crib, right next to her head and she whispered, “Da da” in her sleep.

This one is a bit shorter. There was another night that James was rubbing Dagny’s back and she was drifting off to sleep, when out of nowhere she quietly said, “Meow.” Then she promptly fell fast asleep.


I don’t know if this is obvious, but if you ever want to see the full sized photo, just click on it and the bigger version will open in the same window. You can right-click to open in a new window if you prefer.


If you hover your mouse over the photos you’ll see what I’ve renamed them and occasionally it helps explain the photo.

Unfortunate Hobby

13 Oct

Unfortunate for my husband that is. Well, I guess you can decide for yourself how unfortunate it is. And honestly I don’t even know if you could call this a “hobby” per se, but I think its a good description at this point. A while back, we read The Ultimate Cheapskate’s Road Map to Real Riches by Jeff Yeager and Amy Dacyczyn’s The Complete Tightwad Gazette. That’s when I got it into my head that I could cut James’s hair to save money. Now, we could certainly spend the money for him to go to a salon, or a Great Clips or wherever. But I like doing it, even though I suck compared to even the worst professional hairstylist. And James is very accommodating of me and my wild ideas.

So that brings us to last night. He’s been due for a haircut for several weeks now and last night we finally got around to it. I’ve been toying with the idea of trying something more complicated than the usual standard short guy hair with a bit of messy on top. Soooo, I decided I could probably handle a faux hawk. I figured if I just left it a little longer on top in the middle, and then did what I usually do it would be passable. And this is the result…first I took some “before” shots:

I feel now is a good time to say a few things. First of all…it was late at night and we were both exhausted during all of this…obviously James at least still has his sense of humor intact. Personally, I was born without one. Anyway, as you can probably tell if you know ANYTHING about cutting hair (which I DON’T,) I am not doing a super fantastic job. I think its passable, especially considering he has either worked at home or in an office full of computer geeks since we started this little experiment of me cutting his hair. You might (or might not-I hope) notice where I have trouble blending or dealing with his ornery cowlick.  Or where I just plain have no clue what I’m doing. I have no technique. I just watch a few YouTube videos, read a few free tutorials on various websites, mix it all around in my brain and flick on the clippers, mwahahahahaha!  This one was a little trickier because all of the tutorials were for people with way more sophisticated skills than myself. Some were just scissor-cutting, some were just clipper-cutting, some were just razor-cutting. All were professionals. And a LOT were videos of Asian teenagers styling (i.e. blowdrying, straightening, applying massive amounts of “product”) their hair into a faux hawk with no cutting whatsoever. So I absorbed all that and just did what I felt like would produce the shape I had imagined.  Keep in mind this is totally not styled or anything. I just wet it and pushed it toward the middle of his head. This is what it turned out like:

I really want to point out everything that I am fully aware of that is totally jacked up, but then you would see it if you didn’t notice it already. Soooo, I’m just going to keep my big mouth shut :D Hopefully after about a week of growth all of that will look a little less intense anyway. And worst case…he can go to a salon in a few weeks and they can get us back on track. I thought this would be kind of entertaining, and I hope I was right. I mean, who lets their wife with no haircutting experience whatsoever cut their hair every few weeks? My wonderful husband, that’s who. I will tell you this. The first thing he said when he looked in the mirror was “I’m gonna have to learn all the songs to Grease now.” I was like, “Summer lovin’…havin’ a bla-ast…”

Fall in the Northeast

11 Oct

Is Pittsburgh the considered northeast? I think it is. It doesn’t seem right to call it the midwest, that’s for sure! Anyway, one thing that is really special and cool about this region of the country is that everybody seems to be really into the harvest season. There are festivals every weekend. Soooo many houses decorate for Halloween and Thanksgiving…I can only imagine that Christmas is going to be pretty big too. Being someone who absolutely LOVES this time of year more than any other time, its kind of a big deal to me. Crunchy leaves, the rainbow of foliage, jack-o-lanterns on every doorstep and the unmistakable smell of Autumn are on par with the watching the sunrise light up the Rocky Mountains, and the sunset paint the sky in Winter Park for me. So I’ve been really eager to check out some of the many festivals around town.

This weekend we finally decided to do our Saturday Adventure Day at Soergel’s Orchard. I found it online via Google while I was looking for a pumpkin patch. We were expecting a barn with a field behind it, or something along those lines. We drove up to this:

Ironically we never saw their pumpkin patch, but that’s OK. This place was awesome! There were families everywhere! I don’t even know where to begin.

Both James and I expected we’d walk around in a field of pumpkins for 30 minutes or so, sample some cider and be on our way. We got there around 11:00am and walked into the mayhem. There were huge crates of green, orange and white pumpkins and squashes lining every path. It was Apple Festival weekend so the smell of freshly picked apples wafted around, mingling with the scent of cider, candied nuts and hay. We wandered through the grounds and tried to get a feel for everything that was there. Along the way we made pit-stops for the playground area and to sample different varieties of apples. It was lovely! By the end of the day we had spent nearly 5 hours there and had eaten lunch, seen a cider press in action, played in the hay pile and taken Dags through a cornstalk maze, among other things. Dagny had so much fun and she was going at full-speed the entire time! I can’t wait to come back next year when she will be able to enjoy more of the big kid stuff.  I think we have a new family tradition!

Sleepytime Luck Update

8 Oct

I know I am probably jinxing the heck out of this, but I’m going to talk about it anyway. So its been what, about a week…I have no idea…since we started this new plan to teach Dags to fall asleep laying in the bed. As you will recall (or maybe not,) this Monday was the first time I had my chance to try my hand at the whole fall asleep in the crib thing. I thought FOR SURE she would put up an epic fight with me because that’s just what happens a lot of the time. A good example is brushing teeth. She holds her mouth open and sits still while James brushes her teeth, gums, roof of her mouth and tongue with her little toothbrush. I use a washcloth because all she does is bite the toothbrush and/or wriggle around like she’s on fire when I’m the one wielding it. I also feel like the washcloth does a better job of scrubbing the teeth. But anyway, you know what she does? She bites my freaking finger more than half the time. And bites it HARD, like I scream every time and sometimes there’s a bruise under my fingernail! So that’s why I was expecting world war 3 at naptime on Monday.

As it turned out, she did in fact fall asleep in the crib. I let her roll around and expend some energy for a bit and then I got serious and told her to lay down. She continued to roll around so I tried James’s secret method of holding her really firmly and kind of restricting her movement by force a little. It worked like a charm. She got all still and layed there. Then she blinked a bit and eventually the eyes didn’t open back up. It was miraculous! Since then, I’ve done pretty well with naps.

Oh wait. WAIT! That was Tuesday. On Monday she actually did NOT fall asleep in the crib. I caved in after about 90 minutes of trying everything James has ever coached me on. I told stories, I sang songs, I read books, I sat quietly. She refused to calm down and eventually was so tired that she just started having a meltdown. So I picked her up, changed her diaper and stood over the crib with her until she stopped sobbing. I looked at her and she was out cold. So my debut was less than stellar, actually. But since then I’ve been doing pretty awesome. And tonight was my night to put her to bed, aka Dad’s Night Off. I was super nervous, but I pushed through my fear! Wouldn’t you know that she did eventually fall asleep laying in the crib. It was awesome. I am so proud of myself.

But you know what… there’s another side to all this exciting growing up that Dagny is doing. After the first couple times of our new routine, James came out of her room and admitted it made him kind of sad that we don’t snuggle her to sleep anymore. I totally agree. We miss our snuggle time and we miss having her little limp sleeping body slumped against our chests. How fast the time has passed and how soon she won’t even want us to sit with her while she falls asleep. It’s bittersweet, this new era we’re entering. It’s hard not to feel as if something is already fading away…

Crazy Scary

7 Oct

So last night James and I attended the Crazy Scary VIP Tweetup at The Scarehouse! There was fear, there was awkwardness and there was lots of food!

We arrived minutes after 7:00 and there was a line to get in already! Pretty soon, though, they led all the “VIP” peeps inside and upstairs to the little party room they had set up. There are so many fabulous pictures other people took of the setup.  Some really great ones on the WXPI website! So I’ve been following this whole thing on both That’s Church and The Burgh Baby since they announced it. I don’t want to point any fingers but one of them stated that:

“Remember, if you’re the HECK-NO-I-DON’T-DO-SCARED type, you can hang out on the 2nd floor of ScareHouse with the VIPs the entire time. Just munch on the food and the zombies and clowns will stay far, far away. In fact, you won’t even have to see them because of how the building is set up. PROMISE!”

OK so first, let me just say that the pretty pretty princess who made that promise…LIED! Or at least was ill-informed! You know why? Because THIS was hanging in the stairwell as we ascended to the “RIP suite”

Then before the big reveal of who won the little ticket sales competition THIS GUY (warning-that links to a disturbing image) came into the suite to “mingle.” And by “mingle” I mean “send my heart rate through the roof.” That awesome photo was taken by Veronica Eisert and if she had a website other than her Flickr that I knew of, I would link it here. I’m pretty sure I recognized her as someone I saw at Podcamp 5 because she has a crazy style of dress that I love! When that dude walked in, the lights were dim and I was on the other side of the room. He had on a filthy-looking straight jacket, but from where I was sitting I swear to gawd I thought I saw boney spikes coming out of his back. Turns out, upon (involuntarily) closer inspection, they were just the straps of the straightjacket. I seriously just about lost it when I saw him mosey on into the room. First, let’s consider my propensity to be deeply scarred by things that other people laugh about. When I’m laying in bed trying to fall asleep the kinds of things that pop into my head are THAT FREAKING GUY, various horror movies I’ve been dumb or drunk enough to watch, news stories for gawd sake, horror movies I HAVEN’T EVEN SEEN but heard about the plotline…I am very VERY susceptible to this kind of thing. I love Halloween, but I avoid the horror-scare style of theatrics. I’m more into the costume parties, the trick-or-treating, the nip in the air, carving pumpkins, and color-changing foliage.

So other than that, there were several celebrity types wandering around. My first encounter was with Mikey from the Kiss Morning Freak Show…but at the time I had no clue. I thought he was just another costumed actor from the Scarehouse trying to make me uncomfortable. So as I posed for a photo with him, I joked “It’s his!” and pointed to my ginormous pregnant belly. The camera snapped the photo in the middle of me talking so I look like a doofus…but again…scary imagery with painstaking detail that I was unprepared for! And of course later when they announced these guys were costumed celebs, I turned several shades of red, luckily it was very low lighting in there. Here’s the picture:


Other notable and awkward moments abounded for me! James and I were watching the video feeds of the haunts…the screen was flanked by AGAIN, 2 scary-apple statue thingies. Michelle of Burgh Baby “bumped” the one right next to me and I almost fell over backwards! Some profanity may have also slipped out of my mouth.  Then she laughed at me!!! Which was all in good fun and I laughed at myself and wished I wasn’t a scaredy-cat. I awkwardly tried to introduce myself by telling her my Twitter name and managed to make (I felt like) a jerk of myself. She complimented me and I somehow managed to not even say thank you…mainly because I didn’t hear very well what she had said and figured it out by context a few seconds too late :S Anyway, I’m going to have to learn how to keep it cool around people I admire if I want to keep attending these fun events! I wanted to say hello and meet Ginny of That’s Church as well, but I chickened out completely and never even approached her. Sigh. Also, as James and I were leaving, Wayne Simmons (one of the gracious owners of The Scarehouse) asked me “Aren’t you going into the haunt?” and I said “Heck no!” He may have just looked disappointed, but what I absorbed was disapproval…thank you again, deep-seated approval issues. I felt bad so I shook my belly at him and said “At least I have this as an excuse!”  Yeah, that was classy.

On a lighter note…the food was AWESOME. There were little sandwiches, rolls and loads of sweets! Cookies, cupcakes, brushcetta…it was all fabulous! I had been debating whether to eat beforehand and I’m glad we waited! Particularly good was the salsa. I seriously could have drank it from a cup. The chips were good too, not my favorite style but absolutely delicious. Both were provided by Las Velas, which is Ginny of That’s Church’s husband’s restaurant in Market Square. There were also mini-burritos that were delicious…so delicious. I assume they were also from Las Velas, but can’t say with total certainty. So between the salsa and the horchata that is apparently made from scratch-they told me that via Twitter…I believe we are due for a visit there sometime in the near future. I only wish I could have eaten more of that salsa but I ran out of capacity in my tummy!

In the end, it was really cool. Ginny braved The Scarehouse alone, with a mic, and literally ran through it in about half the time it should have taken. Michelle, who actually won the competition, graciously (or was that grudgingly) allowed The Scarehouse makeup artists to put her in the pretty pretty princess getup and she looked fabulous and miserable at the same time. I liked Uncle Crappy’s posts, if you want more details & pics about all that!

H&M Kids at Pittsburgh Mills

4 Oct

Hi there everyone! We’re currently trying to compose a strategy for Dagny’s winter wardrobe. She is in need of some new clothes because 1) she is growing out of a lot of her current wardrobe and 2) its getting cold & the last time it was cold out she was half the size she is now. So James and I have been hitting all the kiddie clothing chains at the local shopping areas as well as checking out selections online if a store isn’t located near us.

I had a TERRIBLE time finding anything on H&M Kids. I knew they had a kids line because I saw it at the first H&M store I ever set foot inside…the one at Pittsburgh Mills Mall (aka The Galleria at Pittsburgh Mills.) There is virtually NO mention of their kids line anywhere on their website. I had to google it to find a lame-o page with pretty much zero information about what their current kids’ line looks like. So we called around and found out that the only H&M to carry the kids’ stuff is at the Mills and we trekked over there today to check out the offerings. I decided to take a bunch of pictures of their current clothes for girls and baby girls (because, hello, I am shopping for my 15 month old daughter.) I figured I’d post all the pics I took in hopes of helping someone else avoid a long drive out Route 28, or even someone who might just want to see what’s available so they can check ebay.

Now, before you go spending your hard-earned money at H&M, its only fair to share that some of their practices are of questionable morality.

Nonetheless here you go:

This post is not intended as advertising or otherwise making any claim, positive or negative, about H&M. I’m just trying to help people save some time and gas. If you take issue with anything presented here, please contact me at


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 363 other followers