29 July 2006

hello, my name is Anna

It's been too many days since I blogged. That's not to say I haven't been thinking about it, but the brain has been overrun by thoughts of the Topic That Must Not Be Blogged (hereafter known as TTMNBB). Someday, maybe.

And when I haven't been thinking about TTMNBB, I've been in a funk over not going to Blogher. Though I know I'm not nearly hip enough, and would have felt like an imposter in the presence of greatness, I still wanted to go. Next year, maybe.

You're really here to find out the latest Oliver news so I'll just get on with it. He's going through a verbal phase. He is now asking for his current favorite books, Go Dog Go and Good Dog Carl, by name. (No, you wouldn't be able to understand him but the universal translator that was installed via my epidural works just fine.) He points at the logo on our laptops and says "Apple"! (How's that for corporate shill?)He says "shoes" too.

He is starting to call his classmates by name, with his teachers reporting hearing him say "Alex" and "Anna" on Friday. He also said something vaguely like "Ezra" when I picked him up. He always says "Anna" very emphatically. ANNA!! Unfortunately, he called CD and me "Anna" today. I'm not sure he really has it associated with Annaliese, his classmate.

Oliver and Daddy
Friday night we went to dinner at the house of some friends outside the city. Oliver was nearly angelic. Given his interest in all things social, I expected him to rise to the occasion but he surprised me by doing even better than I could have imagined. He ate like a champ at dinner, including some chocolate cupcake *yum*.
chocolate cupcake with yellow frosting
He was cheerful and played with our friends' three year old. I was amazed at how well he held it together well past bedtime. He fell asleep a few minutes after we got in the car to come home, and let me change his diaper and put him in his crib without waking up. He even slept a little later on Saturday and took a nearly 3 hour nap, after a jam-packed morning of shoe shopping (for Oliver), picking up the conversion kit for his crib, and a trip to the grocery store.

The sleep thing continues to get better and better. Today he slept until 8:30am, and took a 2 hour nap in the middle of the day. Tomorrow could be a challenge. We have to leave early to take CD to the airport. I warned Oliver, but I'm not sure he was paying attention.

25 July 2006

weigh-in tuesday

Weigh-ins all around today. Oliver had his delayed 15 month visit to the doc. He's tipping the scales at just over 25 pounds and has grown about 11 inches since birth, which puts him just about average for his age. Perhaps the best news is that the two shots he got today are the LAST until he's four.

shark attack

I also had a weigh-in at Weight Watchers today and the news was good. I hit my 10% goal, and did it a week earlier than I hoped. That's over 17 pounds lost since returning to WW at the end of April. I am now just a shade below what I weighed when I got pregnant.

20 July 2006

aw shucks

Thanks go to Greg from daddytypes for running the bizarre children's book contest on his blog. CD will soon be sporting a daddytypes t-shirt. Woo hoo!

I know it was a random drawing but I feel special anyway.

19 July 2006

the blue period

Oliver visited the Studio at school one very rainy day a couple of weeks ago. It was his first time with paint, in front of an easel. I think this shows a lot of promise...or at least a departure from his pointillist tendencies.

Coincidentally, he wore his raincoat that day and the colors he used are exactly the same as the coat!


It's been a while since I have blogged about Weight Watchers and how the quest is going. The news is all good. I've lost 16.8 pounds since the end of April and have less than half a pound to get to my initial 10% goal. Yes, I've still got 20 pounds to get to goal but I am now back to what I weighed when I got pregnant with Oliver.

I'm still journalling diligently with eTools. That simple act, coupled with a WW leader who I really have clicked with, has made all the difference. I am noticing changes in my thinking. When faced with coconut cookies at Oliver's school this afternoon, something I would ordinarily find irresistable, I remembered eating some bread and peanut butter earlier in the afternoon and decided I didn't really need the cookie. Yesterday I went to the candy machine, planning to get pretzels. They were sold out and instead of getting something else that would be high in points I opted to skip the snack entirely and have another glass of water. I still have to think through all of these choices but I'm making better decisions every day.

18 July 2006

on the mend

I think some of my regular readers have been looking for an update on Oliver and the HFMD (or as we like to call it, "the plague"). The news is GOOD. He went back to school today! He slept relatively well last night, ate a good breakfast, and wasn't drooling quite so much so we decided to give it a shot. He did fine. Lunch wasn't so great but it was pasta, which my carb-loving little boy hates. Pasta and noodles might was well be vegetables, as far as he is concerned. He will eat bread with hummus like it's going out of style but keep those veggies and noodles far, far away.

He's still throwing cups at me sometimes, and is still having a little trouble settling down to sleep (did fine at school so this is just a home issue, at the moment), but in general, we seem to have turned the corner.

It will be interesting to see how many of his old patterns he returns to and how many new ones he develops. The nighttime ritual in particular has had to be flexible over the last few days. My ability to guess what he wants is sorely lacking. I need to polish that crystal ball.... I know experienced parents will probably tell me otherwise but I will be glad when he develops an expanded vocabulary.

17 July 2006

life experience meme

This one comes from Mary P, the aforementioned second-favorite Mary.

Bold the ones you've done.

01. Bought everyone in the bar a drink
02. Swam with wild dolphins
03. Climbed a mountain
04. Taken a Ferrari for a test drive
05. Been inside the Great Pyramid
06. Held a tarantula
07. Taken a candlelit bath with someone
08. Said 'I love you' and meant it
09. Hugged a tree
10. Bungee jumped
11. Visited Paris
12. Watched a lightning storm at sea
13. Stayed up all night long and saw the sun rise
14. Seen the Northern Lights
15. Gone to a huge sports game
16. Walked the stairs to the top of the leaning Tower of Pisa
17. Grown and eaten your own vegetables
18. Touched an iceberg
19. Slept under the stars
20. Changed a baby's diaper
21. Taken a trip in a hot air balloon
22. Watched a meteor shower
23. Gotten drunk on champagne.
24. Given more than you can afford to charity
25. Looked up at the night sky through a telescope
26. Had an uncontrollable giggling fit at the worst possible moment
27. Had a food fight
28. Bet on a winning horse
29. Asked out a stranger
30. Had a snowball fight
31. Screamed as loudly as you possibly can
32. Held a lamb
33. Seen a total eclipse
34. Ridden a roller coaster
35. Hit a home run
36. Danced like a fool and not cared who was looking
37. Adopted an accent for an entire day
38. Actually felt happy about your life, even for just a moment
39. Had two hard drives for your computer
40. Visited all 50 states
41. Taken care of someone who was shit faced
42. Had amazing friends
43. Danced with a stranger in a foreign country
44. Watched wild whales
45. Stolen a sign
46. Backpacked in Europe (I took a backpack to Europe, but that's not the same thing...)
47. Taken a road-trip
48. Gone rock climbing
49. Midnight walk on the beach
50. Gone sky diving
51. Visited Ireland
52. Been heartbroken longer than you were actually in love
53. In a restaurant, sat at a stranger's table and had a meal with them
54. Visited Japan
55. Milked a cow (does expressing one's own milk count?)
56. Alphabetized your cds
57. Pretended to be a superhero
58. Sung karaoke
59. Lounged around in bed all day
60. Posed nude in front of strangers
61. Gone scuba diving
62. Kissed in the rain
63. Played in the mud
64. Played in the rain
65. Gone to a drive-in theater
66. Visited the Great Wall of China
67. Started a business
68. Fallen in love and not had your heart broken
69. Toured ancient sites
70. Taken a martial arts class
71. Played D&D for more than 6 hours straight
72. Gotten married
73. Been in a movie
74. Crashed a party
75. Gotten divorced
76. Gone without food for 5 days
77. Made cookies from scratch
78. Won first prize in a costume contest
79. Ridden a gondola in Venice
80. Gotten a tattoo
81. Rafted the Snake River
82. Been on television news programs as an "expert"
83. Got flowers for no reason
84. Performed on stage
85. Been to Las Vegas
86. Recorded music
87. Eaten shark
88. Had a one-night stand
89. Gone to Thailand
90. Bought a house
91. Been in a combat zone
92. Buried one/both of your parents
93. Been on a cruise ship
94. Spoken more than one language fluently
95. Performed in Rocky Horror.
96. Raised children. (just getting started on this one)
97. Followed your favorite band/singer on tour
98. Created and named your own constellation of stars
99. Taken an exotic bicycle tour in a foreign country
100. Picked up and moved to another city to just start over
101. Walked the Golden Gate Bridge
102. Sang loudly in the car, and didn't stop when you knew someone was looking
103. Had plastic surgery
104. Survived an accident that you shouldn't have survived.
105. Wrote articles for a large publication
106. Lost over 100 pounds (did you mean all at once?)
107. Held someone while they were having a flashback
108. Piloted an airplane
109. Petted a stingray
110. Broken someone's heart
111. Helped an animal give birth
112. Won money on a T.V. game show
113. Broken a bone
114. Gone on an African photo safari
115. Had a body part of yours below the neck pierced
116. Fired a rifle, shotgun, or pistol
117. Eaten mushrooms that were gathered in the wild
118. Ridden a horse
119. Had major surgery
120. Had a snake as a pet
121. Hiked to the bottom of the Grand Canyon
122. Slept for more than 30 hours over the course of 48 hours
123. Visited more foreign countries than U.S. states
124. Visited all 7 continents
125. Taken a canoe trip that lasted more than 2 days
126. Eaten kangaroo meat
127. Eaten sushi
128. Had your picture in the newspaper
129. Changed someone's mind about something you care deeply about
130. Gone back to school
131. Parasailed
132. Petted a cockroach
133. Eaten fried green tomatoes
134. Read The Iliad - and the Odyssey
135. Selected one "important" author who you missed in school, and read
136. Killed and prepared an animal for eating
137. Skipped all your school reunions (high school - blech!)
138. Communicated with someone without sharing a common spoken language
139. Been elected to public office (college council?)
140. Written your own computer language
141. Thought to yourself that you're living your dream
142. Had to put someone you love into hospice care
143. Built your own PC from parts
144. Sold your own artwork to someone who didn't know you
145. Had a booth at a street fair
146: Dyed your hair
147: Been a DJ
148: Shaved your head
149: Caused a car accident
150: Saved someone's life (debatable, but the person in question thinks I did)

Your turn!

16 July 2006

fountains of drool

So Oliver's fever is gone but he's still pretty miserable. It was a better day than yesterday, but only marginally. I think the bumps in his mouth, and probably near his throat too, are hurting. Due to excessive drooling, I put a dry bib on him every half hour nearly all day. We still suspect HFMD, but he has no spots on his hands or feet. Right before putting him to bed I found red spots on the back of his thighs, edging into the diaper area, but not in the usual places for HFMD. Looks like a trip to the doc tomorrow is in order.

Getting food or liquids into him was a major challenge. He seems to be happy with applesauce and cereal, and not much else. At one point I had five cups with different liquids in them. He threw all of them at me.

Sleep is also a challenge. I finally figured out that he isn't sucking his thumb and is thus completely unable to find any comfort. I hope this doesn't last too much longer. The only upside is maybe he will not go back to the thumb when his mouth feels better. I wouldn't hold my breath on that one.

If you thought of Fountains of Wayne when you saw the title of this post, good for you! That was the idea. I went to college with two of them (Chris Collingwood and Adam Schlesinger), though they were a year or two behind me. They were great even then, when they were playing at college parties for the drunken masses. They were not called Fountains of Wayne then. And I'd probably have to get drunk to remember what they were called.

15 July 2006


If you like Flickr, you'll love Tabblo.


Miserable is the only word to describe how Oliver is feeling today. He was up multiple times in the night. I checked his temp at 4am and found it to be a little over 100. When I got up for the morning I remembered a notice on the door at Oliver's school, saying that one of his classmates had hand, foot and mouth disease (hfmd). I didn't read it. There were multiple cases of impetigo a week or so ago, which we managed to escape. I should have known we would not be so lucky this time around.

I went to the trusty internet and read up on hfmd. So far, Oliver has some, but not all, of the symptoms. He has the fever, general malaise, and lack of appetite. I can see some very small lesions in his mouth, though there are more of them and they are smaller than the ones I saw pictured on the various sites I consulted. Nothing on his hands or feet yet, so my "diagnosis" could be wrong. I earned the same medical degree as my mom upon giving birth....

He's been up three times since going to bed two hours ago. I have a feeling we're in for a long night. This thing should resolve itself in 7-10 days. Fun.

12 July 2006

my second favorite mary

If Motherhood Uncensored scared you a bit, It's Not All Mary Poppins may be the blog for you. Mary P. is very very polite, in addition to being positively brilliant. You'll never see "sex week" on Mary P's blog.

She's full of great parenting advice. Most recently, this post really hit home for me. After reading her Philosophy of Childcare, I'm confident Mary P would fit right in at Oliver's school, where our favorite Mary teaches.

fill in the blank

See if you can complete this entirely true statement: Today I had the snot ______d out of me.

Stumped? The word you are looking for, friends, is "massage".

Still confused? It's pretty simple, really. Gross, but simple.

I had a massage today. Student Health Services on campus makes this available at a very reasonable price. $25 for half an hour, seventh massage is free. It's very cool, especially now that I have discovered which therapist will not leave me in agony for days afterwards. But I digress.

For almost three weeks I've had a nasty summer cold, complete with copious nasal discharge in varying shades of yellow. Truly disgusting. I've gone through three boxes of tissues between home and office. Every time I think it has to be winding down, it revs up again. Like today.

So there I am, face down on the table, my head resting on the donut thingy (with disposable cover - that's important), massage finished. I'd been having a little trouble breathing through my nose, but after nearly three weeks of this damn cold, it was hardly a new development. Given Chewy and Oliver woke me up at 4:30am today, I was concerned about falling asleep and drooling through the donut onto the floor. Little did I know....

I got up from the table and discovered a huge wad of snot had exited my nose and was hanging out above my upper lip. Had to have been the size of a small stack of quarters. Dis-gusting. But at least it didn't land on the floor. Not even a smidgen on the cover of the donut thingy, and I gave it a very thorough inspection. The massage therapist, fortunately, has no idea what she's capable of. And I think we can all agree it's a good thing there is no photographic evidence, on oh so many levels.

11 July 2006

15 months

Oliver is 15 months old today and he gave me a gift. When I was getting ready to leave his school this morning he decided to "kiss" me. Granted, the mouth is open and there are some teeth involved, but it's very different from when he is trying to bite my shoulder. He wanted my cheek and insisted on "kissing" me three times. It was way too adorable.

He said "dad" a few times this morning, and was rewarded about a minute later with a phone call from CD himself. Of course, he clammed up with the opportunity to chat with dad presented itself. At least I think it was "dad" (that Oliver said, not on the phone -- I know it was CD on the phone since the ringtone was God Save the Queen) and not "dog". The two are very hard to distinguish.

New word for the day: OUTSIDE! He hears this one a lot, mostly when we're telling Penguin or Chewy (despite the fact that he can't hear us) that they need to exit through the dining room into the backyard. Tonight when I told Penguin to go outside after dinner Oliver shouted, "owside! owside!" and ran to the door.

He was also again trying to say his name. He lacks confidence but he's getting the first two syllables out, sort of. I am giving him lots of encouragement.

Diaper changing and clothes are becoming major challenges. Oliver thinks lying on his tummy on the changing table, pretending to sleep, is the most fun thing one can do up there, other than grabbing your penis. (Yes, he finally found his equipment and now grabs it at every opportunity.)

I can't wait to take him to the doc next week. Could do without the shots but I'm eager to see what he weighs and if he is taller. I don't expect him to have made any drastic strides percentile-wise, but I am curious to see if he really was mis-measured at 12 months, suddenly dipping from 50th to 25th percentile. I'm not at all worried. He's a healthy and happy little boy. We never expected him to be starting center on the basketball team. Both of his parents are vertically challenged so the bar is set rather, um, low.

Finally, a quick update on our reading project. We are nearing the end of chapter 10 of The House at Pooh Corner. I think we will skip the poetry and start a new book later in the week. Three months for two complete books of Winnie-the-Pooh seems pretty good to me.

mommies (and daddies too) should be reading this one

If you aren't reading Motherhood Uncensored you really should be, though I don't recommend it for any mommies who haven't been doing their kegels and might be having any sort of bladder control issues. Kristin is a brilliant woman who can write circles around most of us. We should all go to Mississippi and take her out of coffee. And martinis.

10 July 2006

honest baby

Another 15 seconds of fame...go here.

stuff we love, volume 8

It's been a long time since the last "stuff we love" post. Oliver is older and, not surprisingly, has different stuff.

Our current list of things we can't live without includes:

Hanna Andersson short johns -- Love Love Love these, and really wish he had one or two more sets. And I wish they were half the price! Oliver has three sets, all outlet purchases so I shouldn't complain. I know I've blogged about my deep adoration for all things Hanna before but I just can't help myself from doing it one more time. Floppy sun hats too. (On sale right now!)

Books....where do I begin? Sandra Boynton, we love you too. And Eric Carle. And Chicka Chicka ABC. The Look Baby! series is also very popular (thanks Matt!). I could go on and on about books. Oliver is crazy about 'em. This photo was taken near the end of April but it's typical. He's always got books close by.

books everywhere

Last but not least, Lego Quatro blocks continue to be one of Oliver's favorite things to play with. He will play with these blocks by himself or with CD or me. He's not fussy. His knocking down skills still far exceed his building skills but the he will get there soon.

09 July 2006

growing up multi-syllabic

Oliver's vocabulary is growing slowly, but it's growing. Last night he started trying to say his name, his first attempt at three syllables. It's not coming out in anything the average listener could distinguish, but he's giving it his best effort. It shouldn't be long before he succeeds.

"Dog" continues to be his favorite word. It's the first thing he says when I go into his room in the morning, all the while pointing at a picture of Clumbers above his bed (shown above, by Sandra Coen).

He follows this up by pointing at the dogs in "String of Pearls", a wonderful original painting of five Clumbers (including Penguin and Chewy, in the excerpt shown -- it's too long to fit in one photo and show any detail) by Chris Franey, hanging in our bedroom. As we go down the stairs he continues to say "dog" pointing to the painting Chris did for our Christmas card a few years ago. Then he spots one more Clumber picture in the living room and points, reminding me that this, too, is a dog. If he's obsessed with canines, it's likely genetic.

Oliver has also started to understand more of the things he hears, meaning I probably need to be a lot more conscious of what I say around him, lest something like this happen. In general though, this is useful. When I notice a particular tell-tale stench eminating from his backside I can say, "Time for a diaper," and he trots himself right upstairs to his room for a change. I hope this bodes well for toilet learning.

Someone else I know has grown up too. If you haven't been checking on the daily updates from Voodoo Child, sailing in the Vic-Maui race, you really should, especially today's entry from Sam. This is a kid I used to see a fair bit of when he was small, though I haven't seen him or his brothers in many years so it's a real treat to read his thoughts on the race and get a glimpse of the young man he has grown into. Today he's 18 and about to leave for college, after the boat race finishes. His parents, Brian and Susan, are understandably and entirely justifiably proud of who has become. I wish I could say I predicted it. I knew he'd grow up to be a terrific person but I think I underestimated him. Brian and Susan are my parenting role models. I wish I could bottle whatever they've got, or maybe send Oliver to them for a while. No, scratch that. I'd miss him too much. The one thing that stuck with me from watching them parent three young boys is an uncanny sense of what was important and the remarkable ability to let go of everything else. I'm going to need to keep that in mind this week.

08 July 2006

need you for a strategy session

I'll be flying solo in the parenting department this week. It's been a little while since CD has traveled, but he's got way too much of it over the next three months. That's another rant for another day.... He's off to one of his thrice-annual geekfests. Yes, there are two of them and both meet three times a year and never conflict. But I really will save that for another time.

Here's my problem: I have no recollection of how I manage to get a shower when CD is away!! I know I wasn't doing "night before" showers. Maybe Oliver was sleeping later? I really don't remember. (Could it be the sleep deprivation?? You think?) Lately he's been getting up at 5:30am (or earlier) and sometimes takes a quick catnap before we leave for school, usually in the highchair while I'm in the shower and CD is having breakfast. But I can't count on that.

When he was very small I could put him in a bouncy seat and bring him in the bathroom. Or leave him in the pack 'n play. I have no such containment devices now, other than his crib or his room, neither of which are popular choices with the little guy. Are nighttime showers the only option? I'm a little afraid the new shower will wake him up since it's on the other side of the wall from his crib, not to mention the high potential for bed head. It may be a good week to steer clear of my cubicle.

07 July 2006

taking up residence in the land of denial

Though we still don't know if a move to California is in our future, I am pretending it isn't for now. And while our house is adequate, it's far from perfect and could get very crowded if another child arrives. (No, I'm still not pregnant.) We like our neighborhood, in spite of the insane taxes that have sent many of our friends outside the city and county. The thought of a long commute is more than enough to make me want to stay in this vicinity.

New construction if pretty hard to come by in the city but there is a new development a few minutes away from our current house that has many attractive attributes. The houses are lovely, especially this one. While it's not my favorite look on the outside (hate the chimney monster that is the focal point from the street), the floorplan is ideal. The first floor master suite means the dogs would not have to go upstairs unless they wanted to. And we could easily give that up and move upstairs to the guest room is CD's mum or anyone else needing to stay on the first floor happened to visit. Looking ahead a few years, there's plenty of room in the kitchen area for a computer that Oliver could use. I believe strongly in kids' computers being located in high-traffic areas, not tucked away in their rooms.

The main drawback, other than the prices, is that lifestyle change would be required. Since having dogs, my first priority when looking for a house has been a large fenced yard. Our realtor learned early on that I would look at the lot first, then tell her if it was worth our time to see the house. Her mom has a Clumber so she understood. The lots in this development are tiny and not fenced, in order to encourage neighborly interaction and use of the common spaces. There are good places to walk dogs in the development and a large park a short walk away. We would all benefit from the exercise and since I don't see us having puppies for quite a few years, it's not an unreasonable change for us to make.

The kids in our current neighborhood play in the street. I can't imagine letting Oliver do that do the play areas and community center/pool at the development are appealing.

Our timing is relatively good. There was a lottery for the early stages of Phase I of this development. Now that they are getting ready to start Phase II, things are much less competitive. If we decide to pull the trigger on it, we can. We will probably send in the small, fully-refundable deposit next month, and have a few more months before the point of no return.

So, do I really want to live on top of what was once a slag heap? (Go here for more about brownfields development in Pittsburgh.)

05 July 2006

bizarre book contest

Check out my entry in the Bizarre Book contest on DaddyTypes. Some of you may recognize the book....

04 July 2006

open wide

CD thought it would be fun to let Oliver try biting into his first peanut butter & jelly sandwich, instead of giving him little pieces. It was a mostly successful experiment.

Oliver approves entirely of Panera's kid meal, including the yogurt, though his first attempt at a straw left him completely mystified. Fortunately, we brought along a cup. I wish the milk and yogurt were not reduced-fat but I understand why they do it that way. We will have to try the grilled cheese next time. I do wish they had not allied with Horizon but we don't take him there often enough to get our knickers in a twist over it. I was an Organic Valley fan long before Odin's dad went to work there. [HAPPY BIRTHDAY ODIN!!]

03 July 2006


So many sports, so little time.... I have blogged previously about the household obsession with the Tour de France. Even without Lance Armstrong, we are diehards. The racing is fun to watch and the scenery beyond compare. I will have to deny I ever said this but I'm just slightly relieved that since England lost on Saturday in World Cup, we don't have the additional distraction.

Especially since I do have a new event to keep half an eye on this year...Vic-Maui 2006. A good friend of mine has a boat entered in the yacht race from Victoria, BC to Maui. Fortunately, he also has a website and plans to provide daily updates. The race gets underway today so here I am at work, reloading websites for the Tour, Vic-Maui, AND the US Women's Open golf playoff. I get tired just thinking about all these sports. Too bad it doesn't help me break a sweat and burn some calories.

02 July 2006

leaps and bounds (and words and signs)

music with uncle jimmyoliver and daddy
wearing red for Englandstacking
I realized this afternoon that Oliver has made a number of significant advances in the last few days, both mental and physical. If I ask him to go find a particular book from his bin o' books, 9 times out of 10 he fetches the right one. He has learned the sign for "more" (and his mum learned to interpret his sign for "done", one that he created on his own). It's no longer a struggle to get him to sit down if he's having a drink or quick snack outside of the high chair. This seems to have happened when he figured out the "more" sign and I started to comply quickly. He says "all done", though I don't think he has any idea it's a two-word phrase. Another new word is "duck". [I discovered that his ways of saying "dad" and "dog" are remarkably similar. So much so that I think his first official word was really "dog", not "dad". This has nothing to do with his still not saying "mum" with any consistency. (he says it, but there's no indication that he means me) I'm not bitter, honest....]

On the physical side, he has figured out how to get off mum and dad's bed, and the living room sofa, all by himself and without landing on his head. He is also very close to successfully coming down the stairs on his own, also without landing on his head.

I know there are more developments to write about but this "little" cold that's been kicking my ass for a full seven days now is really taking its toll. Oliver has a drippy nose and some sneezing but remains in generally good spirits. I feel like crap. Like an idiot, I gave my staff the day off tomorrow so I will be holding down the fort, along with my intrepid work-study student. At least it should be quiet. CD and Oliver will be enjoying the day together at home, complete with classical music immersion, no doubt.