7QT: Tranquilized Bear Thoughts


I know I’ve been tired lately because I saw this picture of a tranquilized bear falling from a tree into a parachute and thought “that looks nice.”



Said exhaustion stems from Christopher’s baby rampage this week. He has become too good at walking and has made it a mission to do a circuit of the five naughty things he knows he shouldn’t do: touch the computer, touch the toilet, touch the garbage, touch the broiling drawer, touch the sockets, repeat. His determination would be impressive if it weren’t so frustrating.


I decided I needed to channel his energy into something more productive since I can’t go for walks with Mr. Shoes-R-The-Devil, esq. so the latest “use our recycling to develop fine motor skills” scheme was born. Before he woke up from his nap yesterday afternoon, I chugged a water bottle, took some pom-poms and popsicle sticks out of my growing craft stash, and decided we were going to try to stuff them into the empty water bottle. It occupied him for a whopping twenty minutes after he woke up and I’m only half sarcastic about that “whopping.” It’s also very rewarding to see him accomplish little things, even just shoving a pom-pom in a bottle, and to say “yes” after saying “no” so much lately. It makes me want to do some more activities from my obsessive pinning.


Speaking of recycling, I impulse bought a bottle of raspberry chia kombucha earlier this weekkombucha, opened it on the drive home and thought it was the most disgusting thing I had ever tasted. But it was $4 so I had to drink all of it, right? So I finished it over the past week and now it’s all I want to drink. Maybe it’s the B vitamins fighting my anemia or the 1% alcohol content, but I’m afraid I want to pick up an expensive hippie habit. I’ve also read conflicting things about kombucha’s compatibility with nursing, so if anyone has some actual information, it would be much appreciated.


It took me about three episodes to get into it, but the fight scene in the hallway at the end of episode two convinced me that I’m enjoying Daredevil during afternoon naptime. I’ve had Marvel fatigue. The movies lately have been too weird and involved for me (don’t even talk to me about the Thor sequel because I spent the whole movie being very confused), but Daredevil seems more human and less timey-wimey and the production value is excellent. Plus, I get to use my degree with all the Russian on the show! I knew that expensive education would come in handy! Also, does anyone else want a Law & Order: Criminal Intent/Daredevil crossover so we can have Vincent D’Onofrio-ception? Anybody?


We’ve been going over tense and aspect in my grammar class this week and even I, who really enjoys grammar, am struggling to make it interesting. We had a make up class today because of all of our snow days this year and everyone was pretty bummed about having class on Friday (perks of homeschooling) so I made these cookies from Smitten Kitchen for my students and I typed up a summary of Star Wars for my students to classify all of the verbs. The cookies went over well but two thirds of my class hadn’t seen Star Wars (I know, what kind of nerds are they?) but they learned their aspects so I count it a success.


Said rampager has awoken about an hour too early from his afternoon nap (kyrie eleison) so I’m going to try to rectify that situation. TTFN!

Thanks to Kelly for hosting seven quick takes!

The Polese Women Take New Haven

IMG_5132I was excited for my mom and my sister, Cara, to come visit for weeks. Months. They arrived on Easter Sunday evening, a perfect cherry on top of our marathon brunch hopping (did you know you could have multiple brunches per day? I didn’t). We ate treats from Trader Joe’s, Christopher played with his new Lego train from their trip to FAO Schwarz, and we reunited the next day for a tour around Yale and a stop at Shake Shack. Continue reading

The Seven Stages of Stinky Cloth Diaper Grief

Diaper Day: The holier-than-thouest days of the week

Diaper Days: The holier-than-thouest days of the week

I was working on a recap of our Triduum for this week’s seven quick takes but why settle for something holy and lovely when you can read about poop? I know what the people want.

I enjoy using cloth diapers. Really, I do! You can put your pitying looks away! Sure, I hate that every other day I have the revelation that, dangit, is it Diaper Day again? but we do it for the savings and I’m always amazed at how expensive disposable diapers are when we buy them to go on trips. That moola for two weeks worth of diapers is two trips to Chick-Fil-A, our gourmet date night of choice! Our use of cloth diapers also gets us free crunchy points, which are measured in Wendells, as in “the Moby-wearing mom at the library story hour noticed my baby’s giant diaper butt and it earned me fifty Wendells when I said I’d check out her sister’s Etsy shop where she sells handmade wool pants”. Never mind all the water that we should be shipping off to my home state our (slightly against our lease) apartment washing machine uses and that each of our prefolds has a “Made in Pakistan” tag, surely indicative of totally legit labor practices. Instead, think of all those disposable diapers, sitting idly in landfills, and all those parents without the extra dose of mortification of the flesh spraying a cloth diaper provides. Feeling superior yet? Me too.

Let’s take this one step further and apply some James K.A. Smith cultural liturgy language to changing a diaper! Changing our children’s diapers brings us up close and personal with our fleshly nature. It prevents gnosticism and confronts us with the Incarnation…

Totally kidding. It’s poop. Let’s not baptize it.

For those not in the know, I should point out that we don’t just throw the dirty diapers into the washing machine full of their, um, deposits. The extra step in changing a poopy cloth diaper includes a diaper sprayer (here is one on Amazon, par exemple) hooked up to the toilet to aid in ridding yourself of that unpleasantness. It’s like power washing your driveway but way more disgusting. The worst part is WRINGING OUT THE EXTRA WATER IN THE DIAPER before it goes in its designated bag and festers sits patiently until it is washed. We have been cloth diapering for a year and I still shriek when I squeeze the sewage water into the toilet. So I try to ignore the poopy diaper as long as possible.

Now, duly informed, I give you the Mooney Model of cloth diaper usage, or the seven stages of poopy diaper grief.

1. Denial: “What’s that smell? Are the neighbors making baked Brie again? Oh. Probably just residual from last time, right?”

2. Attempt to impose arbitrary rules on the situation: “Maybe my ‘he who smells it deals with it’ principle will finally catch on. Let me just lure Christopher to Chris’ desk…”

3. Speculation as to the cause: “Should we be feeding him more bananas? Is this the mango’s fault? Why does he enjoy beans so much??”

4. Anger: “Didn’t he just go yesterday? We shouldn’t have fed him so much sweet potato. What were you thinking, Yesterday Julia?”

5. Bargaining: “Chris, if I change this diaper, will you spray it?”

6. Depression: “This is my life now. I am the excrement queen. My crown is made of microfiber inserts and regret.”

7. Acceptance: “Sigh, fine, I’ll change him.”

Motherhood: full of joy.

Quick Lit: Anglophilia Edition

With Lent over, I expected to get back to my unfortunate computer habit, but thankfully, even though I was not entirely successful at keeping my Lenten habit of staying off social media while Christopher was awake, I feel its pull mostly broken. No more laptop vampire keeping me in its dastardly thrall! It also helps that Christopher has developed a fascination with the keyboard which makes surfing nigh impossible when he’s around.

All that to say, I’ve been reading more in my downtime lately instead of just at night before bed. It’s been a nice change of pace during the day. I realized I’ve read a lot of Brit Lit recently, from Arthur to the Tudors to butlers between the World Wars to murder mysteries on the London train. Here’s what I’ve read in the past two months-ish:

Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel

wolf hall

This tome reimagining Thomas Cromwell and the English Reformation was my big read lately. It took me about 20% of the book before I caught on to Mantel’s weird pronoun affectations and started really enjoying the intrigue. Mantel has some issues with Catholicism – according to her, it’s “not for respectable people,” to which I say “you’re absolutely right” – and some of the Cromwell/More rivalry seemed to be a channel for her own hatred of A Man for All Seasons. An excerpt from the end of the novel from Cromwell (bold mine):

You know what I hate? I hate to be part of this play, which is entirely devised by him. I hate the time it will take that could be better spent, I hate it that minds could be better employed, I hate to see our lives going by, because depend upon it, we will all be feeling our age before this pageant is played out. And what I hate most of all is that Master More sits in the audience and sniggers when I trip over my lines, for he has written all the parts. And written them these many years.

Subtles McSubtleson being super subtle over here. These meta-moments tickled me more than bothered me, though, and I continue to spot them in Bring Up The Bodies, which I just started. Her characters are vivid and while the narrative seems a little strange, I was enchanted by how she brought all of these odd meditative digressions together at the end. I’ve enjoyed the first two episodes of the mini-series on PBS insofar as I liked the book. Cromwell seems a little too nice in the show – he doesn’t “look like a murderer” as is repeated in the novel – but there’s time for his ruthless side to come out. Continue reading