Category — Splendors of the Internet
I started this post last week, and my children kept interrupting me, so it’s been languishing. But it’s been another day that’s probably left all of us sad and angry, so I’m finally finishing this one for a little capture-the-precious-moments escapism.
It was just a few days ago that a friend shared the Reasons My Son is Crying tumblr, and already it’s become enough of a phenomenon that Good Morning America flew them down to New York to interview them. And now I’m feeling a little bit bad, because according to The Christian Science Monitor, the dad is taken aback by the attention. He’s hearing from plenty of freaks who are trying to pathologize the whole situation as emotional abuse or undiagnosed behavioral or phlegm-oriented dysfunctions. He’d rather that we forget about him and check out Humans of New York instead. Which, okay, admittedly HONY is awesome. But I’m stuck because the bittersweet images have been bumping around in my brain since I saw them, begging for me to write a post. I loved them and I can’t resist. I’m rationalizing that most of you have already seen the tumblr anyway, but if you haven’t, it comes with a plea: look at the crying toddler, but don’t send the dad any diagnoses or advice. Use that time to peruse HONY instead.
Ah, Reasons My Son is Crying tumblr, I love this so much and for so many reasons.
First and most obvious? I wish I’d done it. Earlier, I spent way too much time checking the photo archives, and found just a single toddler crying photo:
The only reason why I have this one is that we’d wrestled M into a dress and its little matching kerchief so that we could take a photo, and she hated wearing the kerchief. So it’s not like I’m documenting day-to-day life here. Even though I stocked up on pictures of messy faces and big spills and children running around naked, I didn’t think to snap photos of my kids when they were sobbing or having a tantrum. And I regret it, because it’s a defining period of time in kids’ and parents’ lives. Maybe it’s partly the fear that the tantrums and sobbing won’t ever end that makes us so reluctant to snap a photo. Or it’s just that listening to sobbing is excruciating and we want it to stop.
But it’s worth remembering.
Seeing the tears and snot rolling is so poignant and bittersweet. It’s this fleeting time when these small humans know what they want and have so little power to communicate or execute their own desires. You know: they have opinions and preferences. Strong preferences. Juice is better than milk. I want my sister’s toy. And yet these people who are in charge of them are foiling them at every turn. Milk! Sharing! Of course it feels like a series of tremendous injustices. It just doesn’t feel fair that toddlers have no control whatsoever. I scroll the photographs and read the captions and imagine myself a toddler, the whole thought process. For example, “He can’t climb into the sea lion tank.” Well, that’s ridiculous [says my imagined toddler]. I mean, they force me to get into the water for a bath, and they let me get in the hotel pool, and then there’s finally a really awesome pool with amazing rocks to climb and friendly sea creatures and I’m not allowed? That sucks. Or, “We wouldn’t let him open the hotel door and run naked through Times Square.” Come on, that’s alarmist. Maybe I just want to investigate the nub of the carpet that is incredibly dirty in the most fascinating way or push the button to make the ice machine go. Really, what would be the harm in that? I know that the parents are making completely intelligent and rational decisions. And yet I still can’t help feeling sorry for the kid. Words that you can’t yet enunciate, the desire to take care of yourself coupled with a complete lack of capacity to do so. Day in and day out. That is a tough life.
Growing up is a struggle. One of my favorite baby postures to witness is the straining sitter. You know that one? It’s when you see a fairly young child, maybe 8 or 10 months, who has recently mastered the art of sitting up, and someone’s put her (or him) into a reclining stroller or baby seat. And that child hunches forward as far as possible, pushing against the safety straps, because that’s what they can do now. Sit up. Like someone grown. Or more grown than them. It’s a completely different perspective. Kids get to see ahead instead of lying there passive, watching the sky or worse, a canopy. Maybe they’ll grunt and point. Because they have places that they want to go. Things they want to see. That struggle, that eagerness, just hits me in the gut every single time I see it.
Recently someone said something dismissive about a 2nd grader’s rough life. Sure, we grown-ups sneer, you don’t have a mortgage, and someone puts dinner in front of you every night, what’s there to worry about? But there’s so much. Trying to understand how to tell time and friends who don’t get along with each other and older siblings who can do everything and drawing a picture that doesn’t look like the one in your brain at all. That’s stress. It might not be grown-up stress, but it’s tough stuff. And a 12-year-old who’s lost a best friend and has a pulsing red pimple and just got cut from the basketball team. . . yuck. Awful. You couldn’t pay me to go through that again. I found old diaries once and thought that I’d find it amusing, but it was awful. So much sorrow and anger and ennui, and reading it, I felt just as sad and mad and melancholy as I had decades ago. My heart was breaking for poor Puberty Katie. It’s easy for us grown-ups to counsel that all this will pass. But it’s passing through it all that’s the problem!
So all of those toddler crying photos call up the drama of growing up, but also the best and worst of parenthood. Because it’s hilarious and baffling. As parents, we’re constantly making reasonable choices and feeling like horrible people no matter what choice we make. We say “No” because we’re good parents knowing that our children will use those “Nos” as evidence of our utter malice toward them and all of their most deeply-held desires. Toddler parenting just highlights a theme that’s laced through all the parenting years: You absolutely cannot win. The other day, M was protesting because we don’t always conform to J’s bedtime, which M thinks is unfair. Not just unfair, but evidence of our greater love for J than for her. I pointed out that (1) it wasn’t really her business and (2) they’re two different personalities who will get different treatment based on their individual needs, and (3) my strongest point, that M never even had a specific bedtime until this year. If she thought about it that way, I said, then really, poor J was getting the harsh treatment, because she had an imposed bedtime three years earlier than M. At which point M argued that J needed that early bedtime and we were responding to that need because (Oh my gosh, do you see it coming? Do you? Do you? . . .) we love her more! And she believed both statements with great sincerity and conviction. There’s no way to win when you’re dealing with that. So I feel for these parents, these poor baffled parents who are shaking their heads over the booger-sodden sob-fest their toddler has launched as a direct result of their considered choices, made in order to best keep the child safe and clean. Because we’ve all been there.
Something else that I love is the documentation of this transitional time between baby and big kid. In one image he’s got a full diaper and all the little rolls and creased wrists of babyhood, and in another image from the same day he’s dressed and rolling his luggage through the airport like a little man-about-town. Children are always shifting between the baby and the grown-up, and capturing that juxtaposition, and how their development ebbs and flows, is lovely. Maturity approaches so gradually, with so may leaps forward and back, that it’s like a high tide coming in very, very slowly.
Or I guess it’s more like low tide, going out. Because if we’re doing it right, we’ll end up alone on the shore, squinting out toward the horizon as they roll out into the wide world.
April 15, 2013 5 Comments
New Update: I’ve been adding new ones as I come across ones that I like.
I’ve said a couple of times that I’ve been loving doing Zumba. It’s the only workout that makes me lose track of time because I’m enjoying it so much. Right now I go to a Monday night class with the awesome Abby Todd (it’s in Schenectady, but she also teaches in Guilderland), and when I can, I go to a Zumba class followed by a wonderful yoga class at the Schenectady JCC on Sunday mornings (Gold’s Gym, in Niskayuna, has some great Zumba classes, too–anyone else have recommendations for readers who don’t live near me?).
My delightful husband Cute W ordered me a Zumba DVD set, and while it was a wonderful gift idea and before I owned it, I was tempted to buy it myself (and I’m sure that he scored an excellent deal on in, because that’s how he rolls), I wouldn’t recommend getting it for yourself. First, there are the instructional parts, which are boring the first time and then–oh, that’s right–there’s never a second time that you watch an instructional anything. There’s also a lot of Beto Perez, the creator of the program, and the truth is, he’s a bit of a goofball. For me, watching it is awkward and painful. He’s hopping around striking these poses and it feels like even some of the other instructors are cringing for him. That might just be me. But if you’ve ever worked out with any of these at-home programs, you know that you develop strong reactions to people’s personalities. I also feel like the students have surpassed the teacher a bit, so that there’s more fun songs and choreography out there, especially because I prefer the routines that stray from all of that salsa and merengue and take on the super-catchy popular music
Over the summer I was suffering from Zumba withdrawal when Abby wasn’t teaching her class and I hadn’t settled on any others, so I looked around for some good routines on Youtube. That’s not as easy as you might expect, because often the sound or video quality is really crappy. Or there are routines that are way too boring or way too complicated. Or, my personal favorite, sometimes the women are wearing Victoria’s Secret-style push up sports bras and there’s such a big focus on their gyrating buttocks that you’re no longer certain if it’s a workout or soft porn.
Whenever I mention my deep love of Zumba, people often say “I’ve been meaning to try that” or “Oh, I couldn’t possibly dance in a room full of people.” So, for those of you who would like to try a little in the privacy of your own home, I curated a collection of favorites, which I now present to you. For each video I’m adding a little explanation of why I added what and an approximate amount of time for each, but you could also do all of these in a row and you’d have a good workout of just a bit over 36 minutes. Ready?
La Vida Es Bella: this is a nice, slow, easy one to start you off, and the instructor just seems like someone I would like to take out for coffee. [3:30]
Moves Like Jagger: this is one of my favorite songs in Abby’s class, and the choreography is different here, but it’s the closest I could find, and still fun. Alas, this one starts with an ad. [3:10]
Las Mujeres Lo Bailan Bien: this one is easy to follow and feels the most like the sort of classes I’ve actually encountered. [4:20]
Pegate: fun song, and this is close to the choreography for one of my class favorites, but this is also hilarious because it’s men leading the song at one of those big Zumba events filled with Zumba fanatics, so the whole thing is entertaining. [3:20]
The same group of guys is doing this one. [3:30]
El Amor: this song is super-fun, and I like the little crew of girls. [4:20]
Gangnam Style: super-popular right now, and it’s the same instructor from El Amor again. She’s slightly too gorgeous for my tastes, but she’s having goofy fun and nobody’s focusing the camera on her body parts, so she’s forgiven. [3:35]
I’ve figured out that this woman has a rotating channel, so the links change constantly. It’s a bummer, but I’m leaving it because you can follow the breadcrumbs if you’re motivated. If the above doesn’t link properly, try this.)
La Patilla: the quality’s a bit poor, but this is another great song with such a likeable class full of people. At one point someone yells, “I can’t do it!” And someone calls, “Me neither!” and I find it charming. [3:35]
Mawa Sillah: the moves are basic, it’s got a great West African dance feel to it, and I like the instructor–she’s informal but clearly passionate about dance. [3:50]
Waka Waka: another awesome song, with adorable instructors in coordinating outfits doing a fun dance for charity. [3:20]
Can’t Stop the Party by Pitbull: a fun one that I added because I needed a change of pace. [3:25]
Boom Boom Pow by Black Eyed Peas: easy choreography and fun song [4:10]
Historia: another great song, and a mellow one for a little cool-down. [3:20]
Anyone have other recommendations, either online or in the real world? Any favorites here?
October 12, 2012 1 Comment
Many years ago, Cute W met up with my sister Jane and while greeting her, he said, “You look tired.”
Jane, who speaks with great passionate and vehemence on any number of topics, admonished him. “You never tell a woman that she looks tired. Or, if you do, you have to follow it up with a compliment. You have to say that she looks pretty or something.”
From then on, for years, Cute W would say to me, “You look tired. . . but pretty.” We’d say it to each other so often that it’s become a family idiom. At this point, for example, if Cute W saw me looking like this:
He’d say, “Wow, you’re looking. . . pretty.”
Today we were all looking pretty. J spent all morning doing gymnastics camp at Cartwheels, M was doing Farm Camp at Vinewood Acres, and then we all spent the afternoon at the pool, J with me at the town pool and M and a crowd of friends at the Schenectady JCC. By the end of the day, Cute W declared that we all looked quite overwhelmingly pretty.
And I’m too pretty to post. So here are some links:
- I don’t know if you’ve heard, but Collins Lake is closed for the season. That’s a super-bummer.
- Adrienne over at Albany Kid reviews Great Escape for the toddler-and-preschool set.
- All Over Albany reports that you can learn to play the ukelele in Troy.
- The TU’s Tablehopping Blog offers Everything you want to know about dining at the track.
- Flavorwire.com offers the Ten Greatest YA (Book) Series of All Time (Not counting obvious ones like Harry Potter).
July 17, 2012 No Comments
Recently, Cute W and I were both feeling crabby.
Cute W sent me a link to a TED Talk by Shawn Achor , in which Achor entertainingly argues that we can rewire our brains for greater happiness, optimism, and success. He suggested five activities to make you (or in his talk, your workers) more happy & optimistic:
- Listing 3 new things per day for which you’re grateful
- Journaling about something positive that happened each day
- Performing acts of kindness
Cute W sent it because he was “on the red train” at work. This is a family code which we adopted at least fifteen years ago after some conference my father attended. If you’re feeling pessimistic and irritable about everything, according the presenter, then you’re “on the red train.” The idea is that if you’ve got pessimistic momentum going, anything that happens will piss you off. You have to disembark from “the red train” and “get on the blue train.” When one of us is in a full-on rant, occasionally the other spouse will say, “Umm, honey? You really need to get off the red train.” So Cute W sent the link as a little reminder that we had to buck up and get back on the blue train.
After watching the video, I decided that I could use a little attitude adjustment, which led me to the library, where I checked out The How of Happiness: A Scientific Approach to Getting the Life You Want by Sonja Lyubomirsky and The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin. The How of Happiness sounded a bit more self-helpy than what I customarily read. For some reason, I’ve always been a bit snobby and eye-rolling about self-help books, which is silly, since I am such a frequent skimmer of parenting books, which are basically. Anyway, I didn’t read it cover-to-cover, but the fun part about The How of Happiness is that it includes little quizzes, one of which assesses what kind of happiness activities are worth doing for you personally, based on the things that you’re naturally inclined to do, either because you know you’d like a change or because it fits into your lifestyle and preferences. Then, you can choose the two or three activities that are most likely to make you a happier person. Like a combination of a fun magazine quiz and a Choose Your Own Adventure book. Except, instead of it being Cosmo or Glamour, the quiz would be more like something in Oprah magazine. Wait, does Oprah even do quizzes in her magazine? Holy crap, she does! There go the next three hours of my life!
But, no. Because frittering away my time on the computer is, as you might expect, from a blogger, one of my downfalls. Spending hours doing random internet quizzes would provide as little sustenance and as much guilt as eating a container of Ben & Jerry’s. The book, on the other hand, offered me three areas that are most likely to bring me joy, along with activities associated with them. For me, they were:
- Gratitude: expressing gratitude, cultivating optimism, and avoiding over-thinking and social comparison
- Social Connections: practicing acts of kindness and investing in relationships
- Body: practicing religion and spirituality, meditating, getting physical activity, and acting like a happy person
These rang true for me. I’m absolutely happier when I’m working out regularly, and I frequently smile as a prod to feel happy. If you’re a regular reader, you know that I’ve been trying to work on friendships because I spend quite a bit of time alone. And I like the idea of cultivating gratitude. I think I’m pretty awful about over-thinking and social comparison or, if I’m not awful, I’m hyper-aware of it and I struggle to contain it (like my recent Bad Mama rant).
The Happiness Project, meanwhile, is an entertaining memoir of woman who spent a year trying to get happy. First of all, she is unbelievably, super-motivated. Each month brings new self-assigned goals and tasks, and she accomplishes so much that it would almost make me hate her if I hadn’t just resolved to avoid social comparisons while reading the last book. Instead, at some point–and I think it was a sentence in May when she mentions that she loves writing by Leo Tolstoy and Madeleine L’Engle–I fell in love. The book is full of self-deprecating insights and take-away wisdom, like her Twelve Commandments. And she’s got a website with a blog all sorts of information and items to print and use. Really, it’s another one of those websites that will easily consume hours of your life. But possibly for the better
Coincidentally, at about the same time that I was mulling these various self-improvement goals, I heard from a lovely woman named Monique from Daily Feats. People send random things to the Capital District Fun email all the time. They want to write guest posts, or they want to coach me on Search Engine Optimization, or my personal favorite, a guy who wanted to pay me $75 to work a link to a liposuction site into one of my posts! Ha! Like I’d ever talk about liposuction in any way that was full of eye-rolling and general disparagement. Occasionally it’s something worthy, like bread from All Good Bakers or a giveaway that you guys would actually want.
So, I like DailyFeats. It’s designed to “help people reach their goals through small, positive steps.” I took that quotation from the website. You can come up with a list of tasks to do for the day. Except that they call them “feats,” because doesn’t that sound much better than a task? Except instead of, say, juggling while riding a unicycle, you’re doing something like remembering to drink plenty of water each day. As you check things off your list, you accumulate cute little badges. More importantly you earn points that you can use to get gift cards or make charitable donations. So if you keep up with it, you can help others by helping yourself. This is appealing, too, and it reminds me of a Radiolab podcast I listened to about a woman who struggled to quit smoking for years until she resolved that if she started smoking again, she’d write a fat check to the KKK. The notion was so appalling that it motivated her to finally quit for good. So a little external motivation is helpful. If you want, you can ask the DailyFeats folks to remind you to do something. I get a daily email reminder, and then I usually just leave a tab open on the computer to check off a feat if and when I do it. Then I get a little “good job” message and some more points. I like that they’ll remind you, but they’re not quite as relentless as some other sites I’ve heard about (like Fly Lady or Spark People). Your can just use it as a sort of personal “to do” list, or you can use it as a social network and befriend people, encourage them, or make comments. They also have special challenges, which are groups of feats associated with a certain goal, and if you complete a challenge you get more points. So, for example, a week-long running challenge includes running, stretching, and hydrating.
I decided to use DailyFeats along with my new happiness insights to come up with some new happiness-related activities. I ended up going with:
- Be Kind (3 times a week)
- Gratitude (every day)
- Exercise (5 times a week)
- Writing (every day)
I did. . . okay.
- Exercise was something I already tracked, and so moving it to DailyFeats wasn’t particularly life-changing.
- I thought the kindness thing would be easy because . . . I’m a nice person. But I held myself to a fairly high standard. Like, I’ll count a bigger volunteer thing (like giving blood or spending all day at the school field day), but regular volunteer gigs don’t count. And bringing cookies to an event where we’re supposed to bring something doesn’t count, although an entire meal for another family would. I thought I could always write a thoughtful and kind note to bring up my weekly average, but this is easier said than done.
- My writing was an unmitigated disaster. The plan was that any blog or KidsOutAndAbout writing wouldn’t count, because I’m trying to make myself do other things. Beyond that daily stuff, though, I just sucked. I think I really need some more external deadlines. Quick, somebody assign me something, would you?
- The one huge success was gratitude. I bought myself a teensy purple notebook and I write three (sometimes four) things each day for which I am thankful. I actually really love this new routine. During the day I’ve found that I am, like Achor said, “scanning for the positive” so that I’ll have things to write in the evening. It’s a lovely little review ritual each night just before sleep. And it functions as a very small journal, which is great. I’ve had a journal off and on for more than 30 years, but the blog has mostly replaced it in recent years. Which is alright, except that I don’t feel comfortable talking about absolutely everything here (even though sometimes it seems like I do), so it’s good to have it.
But I do think that it’s a good tool. In fact, now that I’ve tried it for a couple of weeks, I think I’m going to change what’s on my list of Feats. I might make a new list of family things to do for the summer. And in fact, if you want to try it, Monique at DailyFeats says that you can put in the promotion code CapitalDistrictFun100 to get 100 points for doing nothin’ except signing up.
I actually love having a “to do” list. I’ve realized that having a “to do” list waiting for me in the morning is one of the best predictors of a great day. I’m just more efficient, and I feel accomplished and resourceful and motivated every time I cross something off. Which is interesting, because both of the books talked about this–the How book talked quite a bit about how having goals makes us happier, and in The Happiness Project, she argues that tracking her progress was essential. And I like that DailyFeats offers cute little manageable “feats” with adorable badges, even though I also get quite a bit of satisfaction from crossing things off the list with pen and paper.
How about you? Am I sounding OCD about this? Are the rest of you running any sort of self-improvement campaigns? Or do you ever have to work on getting a better attitude?
June 12, 2012 2 Comments
We’ve got a busy weekend: ice cream social at the girls’ school, then we’re headed to visit family and celebrate my nephew’s graduation. From high school. This nephew was present in utero at our wedding. Which, if you’re keeping score, makes Cute W and me old. Then we’re headed back on Saturday night because there’s a soccer festival bright and early Sunday morning.
I have an important Facebook page update for the FB folks. However, it’s complicated and annoying enough that if you’re not already on Facebook, I think it might scare you away for good. So I moved the explanation to the bottom of this post.
Here’s this week’s KidsOutAndAbout.com email newsletter. Here’s what’s happening this weekend. Click on the day for a more complete listing.
- A YEAR WITH FROG & TOAD at the Theatre Institute at Sage
- Cambridge Balloon Festival in Washington County
- 2012 Armenian Festival in Watervliet
- OPEN HOUSE at My Place to Play
- Sheep and Wool Gathering at Thacher Park
- Kids’ Arts Festival in Schenectady
- Wilton Wildlife Festival
- Watchable Wildlife: BLUEBIRDS at Five Rivers
- ACTIVITY & BOOKSIGNING—Melinda Mackesey, “Adirondack Explorations for Kids” at the Albany Institute of History and Art
- Summerfest at the Schenectady JCC
- Constitution Classic from the Empire State Sports Council at Niskayuna High School
- YMCA Wa Wa Segowea Open House
Re: Facebook and “promoted posts”: If you’re someone who “likes” the Capital District Fun page on Facebook, and especially if you rely on your Facebook news feed to keep up with my posts, you should know that the the FB folks have changed things a bit. They’re trying to get page administrators (like me!) to “promote” their posts by–you guessed it!–kicking in some cash. From what I understand, if I share a link on my page, only, say, 25% or 35% of the people who have already “liked” Capital District Fun will actually see the link in their news feeds. The FB folks will graciously allow a greater percentage of folks to see my link if I pay to promote it. But I am cheap, so I don’t anticipate actually promoting links with money.
If you want to see my page’s posts in your news feeds, or if you want to see the posts of other pages that you’ve liked on FB, you’ll increase your chances of actually seeing these if you interact with the pages by clicking directly onto the page occasionally or showing interest in posts as they appear in your feed by “liking” them, sharing them, or commenting on them. All that stuff goes into Facebook’s algorithms (here’s where it all gets a little hazy in my brain–it’s possible that there are incantations and magical potions of some sort). Interaction shows FB that you care (in much the same way that calling your mother shows that you care). This will increase the likelihood that FB will put items from the page in your news feed. And, by the way, a post that has been “promoted” via paid advertising will be labeled with a teensy “Sponsored” underneath it. So if all of a sudden you start seeing a bunch of stuff from some company that you forgot that you liked two years ago, that’s why.
May 31, 2012 4 Comments
J’s been hard at work designing a little bed-and-breakfast in case a leprechaun decides to visit our house. I don’t think it’s going to be happening. In fact, I ranted about this last year.
Did you realize that tomorrow’s Pi Day? 3/14, get it? Maybe you would like to do something Pi related? Or maybe just eat some pie? You can check out PInterest for some ideas (PInterest–get it? Huh? Get it?)
I have no real passion for basketball brackets, but Ask Moxie has a “Mothering Calamities” Tournament. Just reading through them is hilarious, but I’m sort of dying to see how the brackets play out, because there are some tough match-ups (ie., “Asked if you’re your baby’s grandmother vs. Baby pukes in your mouth” or “Stranger chastises you for baby’s lack of hat vs. Poopsplosion”). Go check it out. Voting begins on Thursday!
Jenn Mattern’s blog post today about her 10-year-old daughter felt eerily similar to how life is with M these days.
You saw this lovely time-lapse pregnancy video, right? They look like a very sweet little family. Except at the end I sort of felt like he was trying to French kiss her belly button, and I felt like I was intruding. But clearly they’re exaggerating for poetic effect. It’s just a difficult transition/edit, and by that time they were probably overtired. I barely got my boring paper birth announcements out, and that was only because I was helped by a kind stranger. So they rock.
Josalyn from Capital District Foodie Tots is spreading the word about their Meet-up group of families trying to get fresh, healthy meals on the table. They’re sharing resources and recipes with a focus on farmers’ markets, vegetarian, vegan, and gluten-free options, and kid-friendly healthy choices.
March 13, 2012 3 Comments
I’ve been getting the KidsOutAndAbout.com newsletter ready tonight, but luckily I’ve got a big list of links that I’ve been meaning to share with you.
All Over Albany has a post on The Snow Train to North Creek.
I just love Glennon’s approach to dealing with tantrums over at Momastery. Seriously, I can’t look at that thumb’s up photo without giggling. It reminds me of one of my favorite things about blogging. When the day’s going crappily, I know that I can kvetch to you all.
The TU’s Parenting Blog has a post with folks suggesting where to donate used toys.
Mamatoga visited a new indoor play center in Ballston Lake, The Wonder Room.
The TU’s Your Day Blog shares that you can get two lift tickets for $20 to ski West Mountain on Wednesday nights.
And you’ve probably already seen this “I’m Elmo and I Know It” parody video that’s been going around, but just in case.
January 25, 2012 No Comments
Update: okay, okay. Have I mentioned that I’m not too tech-savvy? My first plug-in, which would have kept you in the dark at Capital District Fun all day, didn’t work, so you just got a teensy blackout. And here’s more info. if you’d like it:
If you spend slightly less time on the internet than I do, or if you’ve been taking care of toddlers or sick children, you might not realize that there are going to be quite a few blacked-out sites tomorrow. Capital District Fun will be one of them. I wanted to give you a little warning in case you want to look something up and write it down with an old-fashioned pencil.
I am blacking out because I like to link & comment with wild abandon, and I like to link to people & places where people are talking about all sorts of things. Sometimes these are vitally important and politically relevant. Sometimes they’re tasteless, not-suitable-for-the-kids spoofs of pop culture. I want access to all of them without fear that my site, or the sites that I love, will be shut down.
Here’s more information, in case you’re looking for it.
TechDirt’s got what it calls The Definitive Post On Why SOPA And Protect IP Are Bad, Bad Ideas.
If you don’t feel like reading, and you’d rather listen to a guy ranting in a British accent while you, I don’t know, fold laundry or wash dishes, here’s your link.
Here’s a commentary from Time’s Techland Blog.
The Bloggess takes on SOPA in video form and makes us fall in love with her all over again.
January 17, 2012 No Comments
I wrote a review of Saturday’s Laurie Berkner Band concert. It’s over on KidsOutAndAbout.com. I was a little scattered that day because we were running straight to the show after ice skating, so I forgot my camera. But there are photos from the concert over on The Angel Forever, in case you’re wondering what a “a surprisingly chic giraffe-print pouffy party dress with pink ruffles” looks like. The review is a love-fest, and not just because we got review tickets and a giveaway: pack I just love her. Oh, and not only that, but Deb tweeted the review @KidsOutAlbany, and Laurie tweeted back. It’s like, she almost talked to me.
And speaking of cool women, I don’t know why it took me so long to figure out that Amy Poehler and friends have a web-based show called “Smart Girls at the Party” with the tagline “change the world by being yourself.” Holy cow I think she’s fabulous. The girls haven’t seen any of the shows, because if I said, “Girls, girls, look, look! Check out this cool show,” then they’d watch it, all skeptical, and possibly roll their eyes. If I look like I happen to be watching it all by myself when they walk by and look over my shoulder, they will be hooked. So, what is this exactly? Tragically manipulative? Not passive-aggressive surely, but passive-awesome? Discuss.
And if you aren’t already overwhelmed by social media, the splendors of the internet, and the fabulosity (yes, I just made that one up) of womanhood, did you hear about the Bloggess and her traveling red dress? If you’re a regular reader, you know that I think that The Bloggess is hilarious, although between the guffaws she’s also shared that she suffers from depression and anxiety. Just about a week ago she posted that she struggles with trying to control a self-harming disorder, and when she did, her readers and fans, in addition to passing along comments and virtual hugs, showed their support by donating to support her traveling red dress. To hear more about that, check out the original red dress post with lots of follow-up updates, and here’s an article from Forbes.com (which made me laugh at the end, because the writer discloses that she bought a bunch of red dresses after researching the story).
And finally, in honor of future supremely awesome women, if anyone needs to be hooked up with Girl Scout cookies this year, it’s M’s first year selling them. If you’re local or family and want some thin mints at the end of the month, she’s your gal.
January 9, 2012 3 Comments
I’ve been collecting links to share. And I’m too lazy to write. So, here’s what I’ve got:
I thought that saying I’m an organ donor on my driver’s license was enough, but apparently it’s not. So here’s a form for New Yorkers to fill out to register as organ donors.
I thought that this video, created by a girl with her sisters to support The Girl Effect, was awesome. Her mom must be so proud!
Have you heard about Khan Academy? If you or your kids want to learn about something–math, art history, economics–there are tons of free tutorials.
The family of a woman who died of liver cancer on December 15th is collecting breast milk for her newborn baby Violet. They live in Dutchess County and there’s a drop-off spot in Coxsackie, but if I hear of someone collecting closer, I’ll update this. Update: Call 813-9290 or 788-7821 if you want to donate locally. This is a friend of a friend of that Katie girl whose blog you read, if that’s enough of a reference for you!
January 4, 2012 2 Comments