Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Saved by zero

Happy New Year and all that crap.

I have, as usual, several semi-literate mostly unpublishable half-posts sitting here in my dashboard, and I have run out of motivation and inclination to finish and/or delete them.

My computer was held hostage by a highly incompetent computer "repair" shop here in Princeton for three weeks with no actual repairs ever effected, so I was using KB's computer for a while, which I really don't like doing. Not because it's not a perfectly fine (if PC) computer, because it is, but because it's not MINE. It doesn't have the passwords pre-typed like my computer, it doesn't have the same shortcuts as my computer, it doesn't have my address book and my contacts, my photos, my notes, et cetera. It just makes for very difficult computer time.

The reason my computer was being "repaired" was that the CD drive has crapped out on me - it will accept a disk and whirr industriously for awhile, igniting false hopes in my breast and fooling me into thinking that it will actually work, but then nothing happens. No icon on desktop, no music on iTunes, no DVD playing, et cetera. So I figured I needed a new drive. I took it to this local place, thinking I'd do my part to support the local economy (plus I hate Apple stores - love the products, but really truly hate the stores. Genius bar, my fanny.) but they had it for, as I said, three weeks and didn't do anything with it. Whenever I called in to see what the heck was going on, no one seemed to know anything, or I was told that the person who DID know something was on vacation. One time I called and got no answer at all (this was at 10:30 am) and when the voice mail picked up, the sultry anonymous computer female told me that the box could not accept messages and that there had been an error. These kinds of things, in a supposedly tech-savvy place, do not engender much confidence in me.

So now that I have rescued my computer from their evil clutches (and warded off the $150 "diagnostic fee" they tried to hit me with) I am bravely (and perhaps foolhardily) going to attempt to repair it myself. My awesome brother-in-law knows his stuff, Mac-wise - he helped me find a site to buy a new drive from and promised to talk me through the surgery on the phone if need be. So wish me luck with that.

AND. Yes, we're closing on the new house next week. We are currently booking movers and changing our address with all 8 million businesses/publishers/utilities/banks that need to know. Sigh. I hope we don't have to do this again for a looong time.

NOW that I've forced you to listen to my whiny bitching, here's what I know you're really after. Nolan pics:

Nolan petting a random cat on the street while we were out for a walk. I feel bad for him that Joe Street Cat is friendlier with him than our kitties are. I wish they would get over their fear of him (Jake's actually getting better and more tolerant, but Lola still flees in terror) because it would work out so well - the cats are constantly looking for attention and Nolan is constantly trying to pet them. I want to shake their little kitty shoulders and say, "Wake up! This is a win-win situation! He wants to pet you! You want to be petted! What exactly is the problem?" Maybe it's just that he will pet them gently and contentedly suck his thumb for a little while, and then grab an empty wrapping-paper tube and try to clonk them on the head with it. That could have something to do with their antipathy, perhaps.

Nolan experimentally tasting one of Erica's homemade peppermint marshmallows. She sent a whole bag of them, along with homemade pumpkin truffles and a present for Nolan. When I first gave him the hot cocoa and said I had a special treat for him, he got all excited. Then when I dramatically brought out the marshmallows, he looked at me like, "What the hell is that supposed to be?" I encouraged him to taste it, and this is the moment his expression changed from "What the hell?" to "You've been keeping this delicious sugar treat from me my whole life, evil wench!"

I think it's fair to say he enjoyed it.

He now treats the hot cocoa as more of a marshmallow delivery device than a beverage in its own right. Each one is the perfect size pillowy little square to fit in his cup, and he lets them get a little soggy, scoops them out, and sucks the hot cocoa out of them before re-immersing in the cocoa. We'll be in trouble when they run out. (Nolan did not get any of the pumpkin truffles. KB and I reserved [hid] those delectably smooth little nuggets for ourselves.)

Nolan on Christmas morning. You'll notice there is a dearth of ornaments on the lower half of the tree. This is because from the moment we set up the tree to the moment Nolan broke his first little shiny glass ball type ornament was approximately 2.3 minutes. The second one wasn't for another couple hours, but we quickly discerned that if we wanted to preserve any of our $3.99 per dozen Target ornaments, we'd best take action. So all the glass balls were shifted to the top of the tree and we moved as many soft or wooden ornaments as we could to the bottom of the tree, but we just don't have that many. Thus, the bare-bottomed tree.

Nolan at the Museum of Natural History (after a New Year's Eve haircut of which no pictures exist because KB took him, not me. You know if I'd been there, you would have gotten a three-part photo essay entitled "My Baby's Fourth Haircut. Sob.") in New York. He was more enthralled (and exhausted) by the train and subway rides that got us there than the museum itself. He had a huge freak-out about an hour into our visit, when we had to take him into the Astor Turret and just let him sob and scream, but it seemed okay because there were about 30 other toddlers and their various nannies/parents/minders also there. (The Astor Turret re-purposed as The Toddler Freak-Out Room.) I think we'll skip going again until he can read - it's much more interesting if you know WHY all those bones and stones are there, and his attention span is just too short right now. Did I mention he's not taking a nap anymore? Yes. We now have "quiet time" every afternoon, where he is free to sleep or not sleep, on his own, in his room. Most times he doesn't sleep, and that makes for very cranky evenings, let me tell you.

So anyway. Them's the haps round these parts.

Thanks for reading.


Erica said...

I love love love love love that picture of Nolan with the cat. He looks so contemplative. And the cat, man, that's a fantastic expression.

Next year I am going to make marshmellows covered in chocolate. I did just a few this year to test it and Oh. My. God. I can't even tell you.

Adams said...

Nolan looks like a baby televangelist in that photo of him by the tree. AWESOME.

P.S. I have been doing reading on boy, ol' Malcolm Gladwell, and I am starting to wonder if something in the milk ain't clean.

Oh, who am I fooling! I love this man! [/Zales diamond commercial]

Zach said...

I love that Nolan still pops his thumb in his mouth when petting or cuddling something soft and fuzzy.

Jake and Lola are totally missing out. As Erica pointed out, just look at the random cat's expression. Priceless.

And for the record, museums are tough even when they can read. I spent two hours in the Colorado History Museum trying to keep the nephews from touching all the mining equipment that says "Do Not Touch" and trying to read the placards explaining how everything worked, only to get 8-yr-old attitude "I know how that works" which he'd then explain and be completely wrong, if creative.
Years of frustration lie ahead. Have fun!

Jules said...

Long time, no chat! Got your Xmas card. Sorry I haven't been in touch. I have loved reading your blog since getting the address from Julia. You are much more creative than I. Emma has one at www.livelovelaughwiththebug.blogspot.com
Enjoy! :) We are doing great up here...I finished my Masters program and have been teaching since September. Busy busy. So glad to hear you are settling in!! Miss youguys!
Keep in touch!