So the Fish Said...

Whoever you are, now I place my hand upon you, that you be my poem, I whisper with my lips close to your ear.

- Walt Whitman

Meet the Fish

I want to get a pet duck and keep it in the bathtub.
I am addicted to chap stick and altoids.
I am freakishly flexible.


World's Most Beautiful Child

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World's Most Handsome Child

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Other Important Things

Clive Owen

Clive Owen
Pretend Celebrity Boyfriend


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A little defensive maybe

What? What? Yes, I know I haven't posted in three days, but what do you people want from me? I'm obviously not dead, and you know that I have to dedicate every last bit of my energy to selling my house. I mean, not that there's anything I can do about selling my house at this point, but it takes a lot of energy to obsess about it constantly. On top of that, there are huge steaming piles of things I can't talk to you about, mainly because we feel like in the case of buying and selling houses it pays to be a bit circumspect until all the final paperwork is signed, and, well, the old blog gets a little neglected, so suck it.

Add in the two open houses we have this week, because my realtor apparently hates me, and the home inspection for the new place, and the three lunch dates we've been forced to attend practically at gunpoint (or, you know, casually invited to attend) (and I think Sarah got a picture of Mia with a finger up her nose and trying to steal Ian's pizza, so you should go make her post that) (also, I'm not busy tomorrow, anybody want to have lunch?) and the fact that Mia has recently discovered the joys of coloring on the walls, and the cabinets, and the floor, and you can see, once again, that I'm a little busy.

All of that aside, I'm cutting all my hair off on Tuesday. And yes, I mean all, at least 10 inches and possibly more. So, um, would somebody send me a new hairdo, please? Because god knows I can't make these decisions on my own, that's how I ended up with two feet of ratty hair that I can never manage to even brush, much less cajole into anything resembling a "style." My follicular future is in your hands. And my sanity is already walking the razor's edge, so I hope you take this assignment very seriously.

*Slaps forehead*

Mia spent all morning whining at me about something. I couldn't figure out what it was, she kept saying "Mia something" and I couldn't understand her, had no idea what that second word could be. It didn't help that she was employing the famous toddler method of speaking in a tone of voice that makes everything unintelligible and, as a bonus, after a while makes you want to rip your own arm off and beat yourself to death with it.

I kept trying to reason with her, telling her that Mama couldn't understand her because she was whining and that if she would just speak to me in her regular voice I might have a fighting chance to figure out whatever the hell she had been going on about for three hours. She kept whining, and I kept cajoling and lecturing and begging her to either enunciate or get over herself already. No luck, no joy. I did finally figure it out though.

She was saying "Mia whining."

Oh yeah

We totally got the house. You may congratulate me now.

Mia Monday #76: Mia's Garden Edition

I think it involves shaking your booty

We made an offer on a house today. A house so close to perfect, so close to everything that we wanted with a few things we didn't even know we wanted thrown in (like his and hers walk-in closets in the master bedroom, I shit you not) that I am tempted to drive over there, get on my knees and beg the owners to sell it to us.

Everybody start doing the good juju house buying dance for us now, please. Oh, and also the good juju house selling dance, because now we've really gotta make that happen pronto.

(Hey, maybe if you all video tape the dancing, we can have a contest. The world's first internet dance off!)

Month Twenty-Three

Mia Bean,

You were twenty-three months old yesterday, and I didn't get a chance to write this letter then because, as always lately, I spent the entire day talking to you. My dear, my reticent child, my little late-talker, you are a motormouth. You never shut up. From the moment you open your eyes in the morning and start chatting with Pooh about whether he needs a nice clean diaper to the moment you sing yourself to sleep at night, you talk and talk and talk. I can't keep up with you, you talk circles around me, and I adore every minute of it. You use very few signs anymore, maybe 15 or 20 of the well over 100 you used a few months ago, because you have replaced them with spoken words. You've had the language explosion that everyone promised me, and it continues every day.

We've had a lot of adventures this month. We took your second trip to the beach, the first left you pretty unimpressed, but you were only two months old. You ran hot and cold about actually going into the ocean, but you adored watching the water and playing in the sand. We spent hours collecting rocks and making castles and digging huge holes in search of sand crabs, which we "helped" by carrying back to the ocean. You loved running all over the boardwalk and eating french fries and beach pizza, but more than anything you loved the "round and round" rides. You pulled us from one to the next and jumped right on, never showing a second of fear.

We've also done a lot of house hunting this month. We've put our little yellow house on the market after two intense weeks of work where we asked you often to be patient, to wait, to let us finish or to "help." You handled it very well, mostly. You've also been in and out of so many houses this month and hardly complained at all, instead exploring all the new corners and coveting all the strange toys. We keep asking you whether you want to live in a new house, to have a new room and and a new yard where you can play, and every time you say yes. Just a couple of hours ago, we found what we hope will be the new Mia's House. I can picture you running in the yard and pulling pots out of the kitchen cabinets there. I can picture you growing up there.

You call yourself Mia Bean now, instead of just Mia. You are only plain old Mia when it is something really, really important. Something like Mia drive! Or Mia run! Or Mia Band-aid knee! When it is less important, or when you are trying to ask nicely, we get Mia Bean raisin? Mia Bean bath? Mia Bean up up up?

You are so big. How can someone so little be so big? You can do a forward roll and run backwards and jump. You can climb straight up a ladder and hang from a bar longer than I can. You can use a fork and a spoon, brush your own teeth, very nearly dress yourself. You can participate in conversations. You can remember things and tell stories about them, you can remember the things you are not supposed to do and why. You can find the correct key, put it in the ignition, and start my car. We are a bit less impressed with this talent, and no, you may not borrow my car for another 14 years. You will always be my baby, but you are not a baby anymore.

Mia Bean, you are about to go through upheavals unknown and unimagined in your short life, and I've been a bit worried about that, about how you will handle it, about how you will adjust. Every day I see something that assures me that you will probably deal with all of it better than I will. You are a wonder and a dream.

Love,
Mama

Sucky

Hey, you know what's really annoying? Finding a totally adorable house that would be absolutely perfect for you except for one thing that makes it impossible. Like having no yard. Or better yet, having no yard because what would be yard is taken up by a large creek bed. Can you imagine? A maniac toddler and a creek just steps from the house? I would have to chain Mia to me at all times and would still probably need constant sedation just to maintain my sanity. Not gonna happen, but man it was a cute house.

Or yeah, another really great house we looked at except that it was painted in Redskins colors (burgundy and gold, of all horrible things), which you could almost overlook because paint is just paint, right?, but had 30 foot sound walls in the backyard because it was right on the highway. Even that you might overlook for an otherwise perfect house, if there weren't a 20 foot gap in those sound walls which would allow the previously mentioned maniac toddler to toddle right out and play in 65 mile an hour traffic.

Plus, nobody has come to see my house since Sunday (are you idiots? My house is adorable!) but I still have to make sure it is spotless every time we leave, just in case, and someone around here is incapable of picking up their own shoes, and it isn't the one you think because that's the one who believes that putting shoes away in the closet is the height of entertainment. But really, have you ever seen what a toddler can do to a house? I go to pee and the house goes from perfect to disaster. Apparently I just need to stop peeing.

Groan. I'm boring and whiny. Aren't you glad you stopped by?

So you know

Honey Teddy Grahams dipped in cream cheese and followed by brushing your teeth with whatever flavor of Mentadent I have at the moment tastes exactly like pot.

Not that I would know, or anything.

Oooohhhh.... scruffy

Hotty McBankTellersons is experimenting with a new facial hair pattern. Have I mentioned that already? When I saw him yesterday, if felt like a revelation, but now that I am typing it up I feel I may have known that already and previously filled you in on this amazing development. Anyway, just in case not, Hotty McBankTellersons previous facial hair philosophy was "don't go there," which I generally appreciate as I feel very few men can really pull off the facial hair thing and also, it tickles. His new approach is a close-cropped mustache/beard combo that works for him. I might even be willing to overlook the tickle.

All that aside, when I hit the drive thru at the bank yesterday, Hotty McBankTellersons gave me three lollipops. And one of them was a "mystery flavor." Which totally means that he wants me. Poor man, he must be just heartbroken that I am married and therefore unattainable.

Coming up for air

Oh, hi. Are you still there? How are you? What's new?

Me? On nothing. I haven't painted anything in nearly a week and haven't moved the fucking piano is slightly longer, so I am starting to feel like an almost normal person again. Well, as normal as you can be when you spend all your spare time wiping down the sink and hiding your toothbrush, because god forbid someone come to see my house and be confronted with the bitter truth that I brush my teeth. That would be tragic, just tragic.

The whole listing your house thing pretty much sucks, but Mia is doing much better in the past week or so, now that we actually pay attention to her once in a while rather than telling her to go watch Elmo while we replace the bathroom floor or hide eight million books in the closet under the stairs. I had all these plans to take her to the playground and the pool to make up for the two weeks of neglect, but so far we have mostly just hung around the house and played with the light switches and I have to say I think she is enjoying it immensely. As am I. Today I taught her to say "amoeba" (because she couldn't manage "paramecium") and it is the cutest damned thing you have ever heard. I also taught her to open her eyes really wide (her current obsession is eyeballs) which makes her look like an adorable little hobbit child and it is so cute that I accidentally swallowed her whole. Whoops.

I've been thinking a lot about motherhood as Mia's second birthday approaches, and the thing I never realized before I started this thing is how much you just flat out enjoy your kid. I never realized that your kid cracks you up on a constant basis and that you are literally amazed by every new word and concept and that, some days anyway, you really can sit and watch them brush Tigger's hair for 20 minutes and be enthralled. My kid is amazing, I'm sure yours is too, and she makes even the biggest royal pains in the ass worth it. Sooner or later.

Mia Monday #75: Father's Day Edition

Thoughts upon rewiring light switches

Why in the hell does the world need two different kinds of screwdriver? There's just no good reason for that.

The thought that counts

Me: What do you want for Father's Day?
Him: I don't know. What do you want to get me for Father's Day?
Me: I was thinking a blow job.
Him: Ok. And a card. A blow job and a card.
Me: Maybe I could put the blow job in the card.
Him: Well, you could cut a hole in it...
Me: I was thinking more like a 20 and directions.
Him: Great. So I'll spend Father's Day getting mugged on my way to a cheap blow job from a 50 year old hooker.
Me: Well, if you are going to get picky, I could probably do 40.
Him: Great.
Me: I'd gas up the car.
Him: Perfect.
Me: And print out Mapquest.
Him: Done.

At least I don't have to go shopping.

On a somewhat related note, head over here today if you want to learn about Mia's newest word.

T-Minus 24 hours to listing

We had the carpets replaced today. In the entire house. Well ok, only two floors of the house, but it still meant eight hours trapped in the kitchen with a wild toddler who wanted to hammer to stairs right near all those lovely carpet tacks and run around barefoot on top of the staples.

And I just dusted the hot water heater. I must be stopped.

I spend all of my free time (approximately 12 minutes a day) searching for new things to smear on honey flavored Teddy Grahams before I cram them into my gaping maw. Peanut butter = good, cream cheese = better.

The realtor comes at 10:15 tomorrow, the cleaners come to do the kitchen and bathrooms at 12:30 (for $136 an hour, which would kill me dead except that we are already hemorrhaging money and I just don't fucking care anymore, but I had damn well see a super-special gleam on the rim of every toilet when they leave). The house has been power washed, every non-upholstered surface has been painted, and the former cds-and-guitars room has been converted into the every-crappy-plastic-toy-known-to-man room. My in-laws basement now hold more of our crap than our own house.

I have been working like a maniac every single minute of every single day for two solid weeks, and I mean hard physical labor, not my former "gosh, I have so much email" sort of work, and I am done. Exhausted. Totally spent. I'm cleaning and doing the yard tomorrow, and then Mia and I are spending three weeks at the pool.

And oh sweet jeebus, after this comes the packing.

Mia Monday #74: Mia Finally Has Some Fun Edition

Poor Mia has spent most of the past two weeks watching me pack boxes or tape rooms to be painted, although she did have her gym class and two playdates last week, so I guess she isn't doing too badly. Today I promised her that if she helped me work in the morning we would go to the swings in the afternoon. She opted to take Pooh on a very long walk instead.

She chose the turquoise socks herself, as she generally does. And Pooh is wearing a cloth diaper, also at her insistence. Leah will be so proud of Mia.

Hey

What do you tip for installing carpet?

Knob

We've lived in this house for five years, and for nearly all of those five years I have been using a wrench to start my dryer. The start knob broke a week or so after we moved in, so I took one of those clamping wrench thingies and clamped it onto the stem thing where the knob used to be. And there it stayed, for years. It worked just like the knob did, was always there, you just shoved it over to the right to start the dryer. Occasionally, Chris made off with my dryer knob in the name of some home improvement project or other. He learned fairly quickly though that he had better return my dryer knob or face my wrath.

A year or so ago the stem thing broke so that I could no longer leave the wrench clamped to it. In order to start the dryer I had to reach in with the tips to grab the stem. In another few weeks, I think I would have needed to switch to needle nose pliers. However, since I didn't think my ingenious system would appeal to potential buyers, I finally broke down and decided I ought to figure out how to fix it. It took $35 and 5 minutes of work, and I didn't even flood the basement the way I did when I fixed the washer.

In the last couple of days, I've done a lot of things like that - fixed little things around the house that I always swore I would get to someday but never did. Like repainting the kitchen from where we removed the blinds when we replaced the doors before Mia was born. (And let me tell you, that was a fiasco in and of itself, but at least now it is done.) And on Tuesday, the carpet guys are going to fix all the squeaky floorboards upstairs, so we will be able to walk around at will while Mia is sleeping rather than following a complex map of silence developed since her birth to prevent waking her up with the incredibly loud board right inside her door.

I even repainted the master bedroom, which Chris, because he loves me, consented to paint lavender a few years ago and which I have always secretly hated but could not admit after I had lobbied so hard and cashed in so much marital capital in favor of lavender. Now it a light browny beigey color which I expected to despise but really rather like.

It's almost enough to make me wish we weren't moving.

Almost, but not quite.

Hell

First, I'm going to give up trying to respond to comments for a week or so. I'm avoiding posting because I don't have time to answer comments, and that sucks, so I quit. Hope you will forgive me and love me anyway.

Second, on the way to the playground today with Mia, her doll stroller, and Lucy, I was accosted by Mormon missionaries. My usual approach to Mormon missionaries is to be polite while offering no encouragement whatsoever until they take the hint and go away of their own accord. Admittedly, that has never worked, so I always end up moving on to Plan B, which is to proposition them and giggle a bit as they run away in terror.

Today's missionaries, however, were women, so I didn't quite have the heart to proposition them. Instead I just kept walking towards the playground acting absorbed with Mia and hoping they would go away, which naturally they did not. I finally offered to accept one of their pamphlets in exchange for their absence. It worked.

The pamphlet was titled something about Family Whatever and began with the usual screed about how marriage should be between one man and one woman, blah blah bigotpants, and then went on about how sinful it is to have children out of wedlock and then to how men are providers and the primary role of women is to nurture children. I was having myself a bit of a giggle, because I love marriage and child-rearing lectures delivered by a couple of eighteen-year olds, but then I realized something. I was out trolling the neighborhood with a toddler and without benefit of a wedding ring (I've been painting a lot lately and haven't been wearing it). No wonder I couldn't shake those two, they thought they'd hit the mother lode.

So sorry, ladies, I may well be going to hell, but not for the reasons you think.

Mia Monday #73: Mia Meets Payton Edition

And if that wasn't quite enough for you, there's one more here.

No time for a title

People, life is insane. We are trying to get our house on the market and do the eight million things that requires and also have a little family time with our remaining vacation and then, as if there weren't enough going on, my brother and his wife went and made a baby.

She's fabulous, first or what I'm sure will be many pictures is here.