Annoyance

Dec. 17th, 2010 02:24 pm
marydell: My hand holding a medusa head sculpture (by me) that's missing its snakes (Default)
Why oh why would an online toystore offer gift certificates in e-form only?  Is it beyond conception that I might want to send a gift certificate to an actual child, who might 1. not have email and 2. enjoy opening an actual gift under an actual tree on actual xmas? 

In my case, I'm buying for multiple actual children, so that's like $250 of my dad's money that store won't be getting.

*goes to look for a less dumb toy store*

ETA: Less-dumb toy stores are apparently in short supply, so I'm sending all the e-certificates to myself and will put them in the mail to my assorted young relatives. *ANNOYED SIGH*
marydell: My hand holding a medusa head sculpture (by me) that's missing its snakes (Default)
I'm about 90% done with Christmas gift shopping, assuming I actually do find time to create some artworks for the people on my list who like that sort of thing.  If I don't, I'm only 80% done shopping.  In either case, after spending the morning and part of the afternoon at actual physical stores buying things (instead of on the internet where I usually shop), I'm tempted to just give everyfuckingbody Applets and Cotlets from now on and be done with it.  Toys R Us in December has about the same effect on human sanity as the unspeakable dreams of an elder god.
marydell: My hand holding a medusa head sculpture (by me) that's missing its snakes (Default)
I was briefly interested in the new Dyson fan--until I saw the price, that is--because a bladeless fan could be a good thing in a house with a toddler.  But have you seen the way they're advertising it?  "Conventional fans chop the air, causing unpleasant buffeting."  OH GODS SAVE ME FROM CHOPPED AIR!  Next I hope Dyson will design a way to finally get that dreadful pea out from under my 17 featherbeds.
marydell: My hand holding a medusa head sculpture (by me) that's missing its snakes (binky)

Cut for crass discussion of spending plans )

...Happily, we are in total agreement that there should be a car bed, regardless of how everything else shakes out.


Art horse

Dec. 19th, 2009 11:01 pm
marydell: My hand holding a medusa head sculpture (by me) that's missing its snakes (nymph)
I just ordered my Christmas present from my Dad (he pays, I pick!)...I'm super excited, even though it won't be here til January. I'm also somewhat filled with trepidation.


It may look like some sort of pillory but in fact it's a drawing bench called a "horse"--you straddle it facing the tall end, with your drawing board leaning against the tall part and anchored in the slot at the front of the bench. I produce much, much better work if I'm centered and "in my body," which is a challenge for me because generally my body and I prefer to occupy separate dimensions. (My body is perpetually seeking the dimension where everything is made of candy, flannel, painkillers, and chenille. I'll let you know if she finds it.) Horse benches are very helpful for keeping centered and comfortable, and having a full range of motion in your arm--it's sort of a similar feeling to sitting at a potter's wheel, except with less hunching. They're a staple of drawing classes and workshops and I've always wanted one, but I've never encountered one in the wild/at an art supply store. Once again I give thanks for the internet, through which all purchases are possible.

I feel a bit silly and tentative buying this right now, because I haven't drawn regularly for years, but I miss it, and the inability to get comfortable while drawing on large paper is a big part of why I don't draw much. So I hope that having this will get me over that particular hump and take my poor relationship with my physical self out of the equation somewhat. Or even--gasp!--help to repair that relationship.  When I talked to Dad about it he said he would love to invest in anything that could get me back into drawing--we are an artsy family and while my parents are glad I'm making a good living, they don't want me losing track of the soulful side of life.

So, come the new year, I'm going to start drawing again, for serious. eep.  
marydell: My hand holding a medusa head sculpture (by me) that's missing its snakes (mama)
I just went and bought Charlie a bunch of fall pants, overalls, shirts, and sweaters.  Also a coat, a puffy vest, mittens, a hat, and some shoes.  I could SWEAR I bought practically this exact same set of stuff LAST fall.  What is up with that?  Ungrateful kid, outgrowing everything I buy for him!

And  I resent having to waste money on a useless left mitten! Last year's mittens didn't have thumbs, so I got two useable mittens in a pair.  Woo, windfall! This year he's a big boy so he needs mittens  a mitten with thumbs a thumb, but for some odd reason you can't buy single right-hand mittens. Again I ask, what is up with that? Is anyone out there missing either their left mitten or their right hand? Because I have some spares. Mittens, I mean, not hands.
marydell: My hand holding a medusa head sculpture (by me) that's missing its snakes (Default)
When I search for "sandals" at an online store, it's not because I misspelled SAND. Babies R Us thinks I want to see 48 sand-colored items.  FAIL

Yes I know I can probably put a + in front of it to constrain the search, I may try that next, or I may just go shop at Amazon, who understand string searches.
marydell: My hand holding a medusa head sculpture (by me) that's missing its snakes (charlie-book)

Charlie is not an ordinary baby.  In addition to having lethal quantities of cute, he has been in the 95th percentile for weight and over 100th percentile for height since he was about 4 months old.  Currently he is 8 months old, 31 inches long, and 25 pounds.  For those who don't have a baby handy to comparison-measure, that roughly translates to OMG YOUR BABY IS HUGE.  He is currently wearing clothes for the 12 to 18 month range.
Mary and Charlie in the mirror

He also has, as discussed in these pages, hellacious eczema and sensitive skin, so he does best with very soft, 100% cotton clothes, and unscented blah blah, and pthalate-free blah blah.

Charlie's fiscal model:  1. Mommy looks at expensive stuff, rejects it as overindulgent and ridiculous despite appearing to have enough money to be able to acquire it, if she really has to.  2. Mommy buys normal stuff for me at perfectly nice stores like Target & Babies R Us.  3.  I reject stuff, preferably by developing a rash - or - outgrowing it in mere moments.  4. I giggle with glee as Mommy buys more expensive, fancier baby stuff from to replace perfectly good stuff she bought the first time around. 

Things we have bought twice:
  • Newborn sleeper thingy.  We started with a bassinet with soft sides.  Newborn Charlie kept rolling over to the side of it despite not being able to roll over yet, because his asymmetry made him flip toward the side with the heavier arm.  Clever boy!  Replaced now suffocation-hazardy thing with slat-sided cradle.
  • Mattress.  Ordinary baby mattress replaced with one that's better for his allergies.
  • Changing table cover - ditto; also the new one has padding across the part by his head, since he kept banging his head on the rail.
  • High Chair - perfectly nice first chair has a high back, which when he's got a rash he uses to itch the back of his head.  Replaced with low-backed booster chair, hopefully temporarily.
  • Infant Car Seat - the portable seats that snap onto the grocery carts etc. are essential for a baby who can't sit up yet.  The normal models are only good until the baby is 27" long.  Charlie didn't start sitting until recently, so we got him a tall-baby infant seat that's rated up to 32 inches.  Third seat is imminent.
  • Skin creams of every kind. However here my pocketbook had one triumph, because the $50 prescription moisturizer gave him a rash, too, and thus far ordinary Eucerin is working ok.
  • Baby food of every kind; now I make it from scratch using a fancy baby food cooker.  In this case I just cut to the chase and bought the damn overpriced thing without trying to find a cheaper small cooker, because I have learned the fiscal model.
  • Every sort of clothing known to baby, except shoes. I started off buying him the expensive shoes, and they have worked out great and still fit, go figure. The boy's demanding, but consistent.
marydell: My hand holding a medusa head sculpture (by me) that's missing its snakes (charlie2)
So Charlie is almost 5 months old, and weighs 19.5 pounds, and is 28 inches long/tall.  This is what happens from having big & tall genes, big & tall nurture-parents, and formula that has rice stuff added into it for reflux.  (Um, against reflux, actually.)  According to the growth charts at the doctor, he's heavier than 95 percent of babies his age and taller than 103 percent of babies his age.  I think maybe it's time for us.gov to make some new growth charts...

Anyway what's fun with a big horking baby like Charlie is that a lot of the stuff that babies his age use and need is sized too small for him.  His car seat, for example--they make one-size-fits-all carseats that work for babies from birth up thru age 2 or something, but they're not the kind you see everyone snapping onto their grocery carts or strollers.  Those kind--the infant portable carriers--are typically rated for babies up to 20-something pounds and 29 inches.  Charlie's ok on the poundage but he's about to be too tall (see photo below).  But he still needs that type of carrier for going to the grocery or target--because he's still too young to be able to sit up in a cart.  (And it's handy for taking naps at grandma's and stuff like that.  Sigh.  Fortunately there are two infant carriers rated for bigger infants, so I got the Graco SafeRide today and will switch him to that.  For 140 bucks.  Had I known he would need this, I would have bought it to begin with, but who would predict that a 6 pound 14oz newborn would outgrow his carseat in 5 months? 



I also bought him this cute little seat with a snap-on tray, so he can practice sitting up.  I sat him in it and could barely snap the tray on over his fat little thighs.  The box claims it's for babies from 3 to 24 months.  24 months!  He's going to be 4 feet tall by then.  He loves the seat though, so we'll use it as long as we can squoosh him into it. 

Oh and his shoulders are getting to be too wide for the countertop infant tub I bathe him in.  Which is the tub I bought when he got too big for the infant tub I used to bathe him in.  Toddler tubs assume he can sit up.  So I guess I need an extra-wide infant tub. Or a bucket or something.

Fortunately he still fits in his crib.  And is still the world's most adorable baby, in my possibly biased opinion.



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