Tuesday, July 27, 2010


When Nathan hears the trash truck, he climbs onto the armchair in the living room so he can see out the window and watches it until it's gone so far past that you can barely hear it.


It's pretty cute. What a boy thing to do. Firetrucks, construction equipment, trash trucks... this kid LOVES THEM. How does this boyness get ingrained? I never taught him fire trucks were cool!

We found out yesterday we're having another boy. I'm mildly surprised, the whole time I seriously thought we were having a girl, but I guess I was wrong. Don't get me wrong I'm totally happy to have two boys. Nathan is so much fun and having two boys close in age will be really cool. I mean, until they're 16, but that's a long way off.

So it looks like we'll be putting Nathan in the guest room, my awesome lavender guest room, and putting the baby in Nathan's nursery. When they're both old enough to sleep through the night, like 2 and 4, we'll put them together in the same room again. My aim is to find some great mid-centuryish wooden bunkbeds - I'm kicking myself because I JUST SAW A SET at a yard sale up in Rowley but I didn't grab them because I didn't know what we were having. There could be a set up at my parents' cabin in NH - tucked away in their storage trailer, it belonged to the original owners. But, we don't know if all the pieces are there, and it hasn't been touched in 24 years.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

In Which I Have A New Bike

The day has finally arrived when I have become One Of Them: like Mike, I now have more than one bike.


I haven't posted a lot lately, but basically Mike's been picking up bikes from yard sales and fixing them up into ridable condition and selling them. This weekend he headed out to Beverly and Salem and I just went to a few in Gloucester for the hell of it with my sister, who was staying over, and Baby Gloucesterite. One about half a mile from our house had this great vintage folding bike out front. A early 70's Sears Tote Cycle.

Sears TOTE Cycle

The price tag on it was $85. It's cute and all, but I knew that they were asking too much for Gloucester. Not a lot of hipsters or bike nerds around here. It had a lot of rust, it's obviously going to be tough to replace parts, and it's heavy. So I snapped the picture above, sent it to Mike, and I told him to drop by later if he wanted to attempt to talk them down.

A little after 1PM Mike showed up with the bike. He'd gone to the yard sale right as they were packing up and offered the lady $25 for it - she took it. Wow. Score.


I love the color.

I took one ride on it and decided it was mine. Mike liked it as well, but there's an issue with the seat post not fitting right that needs to be fixed before he can ride it. I always ride with the seat at the lowest level anyway, so it's fine for me for now.


Tote is a total misnomer, because the thing could be used as a boat anchor. And uh, it doesn't fold like the modern bikes of this style, it just breaks into two heavy and unwieldy pieces. GUESS I KNOW WHY THERE AREN'T HUNDREDS OF HIPSTERS RIDING THESE AROUND BOSTON AMIRITE?


This is a picture of the shifter. Now it's hard to tell from the picture, but it's mounted on the right side underneath the seat post. So, to shift, I have to take my hand off the handlebars and reach under my right thigh WHICH IS TOTALLY WHAT EVERYONE IS ADEPT AT DOING. I'm amazed I didn't smash into a parked car just trying to downshift. Then you have to tap the coaster brake for it to switch gears. All just so you can ride and then lock it up somewhere and hope someone doesn't randomly steal HALF YOUR BIKE. Clearly this bike is just a misunderstood work of genius. I mean, who WOULDN'T want all these amazing, well-thought-out features?

It can't take a baby seat. It can't take a baby trailer. Clown music plays whenever I ride it.
But it's awesome, and I'm so keeping it.

Monday, July 19, 2010

How to Make Money While Sitting in your Driveway

Mike and I threw a yard sale over the weekend with a lot of stuff we didn't need anymore. We both enjoy going to yard sales ourselves, and figured we could make a little bit of money.

In all, we pulled in about $150 - that included one of Mike's bikes going for $80. It was tiring, but fun, and we met a lot of the neighbors we hadn't met before and some of the ones we did know came back.

The couple across the street (the one where the husband and Mike talk about bikes all the time, and their son is close to Nathan's age) came and gave us a wonderful painting they made to thank us for giving them eggs a few weeks ago. That was really, really sweet!


Now we have a bunch of leftover stuff, and next week we find out whether Unborn Gloucesterite is a he or she. Depending on the outcome, we could have another yard sale right before school starts up.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Fun times!

Jaunty Zombie is Jaunty!

Today Christa and I took Nathan and Paloma to Bradley Palmer State Park's wading pool. They had a blast, and it was deep enough for adults to cool off if you sat down, but not so deep I constantly had to worry about Nathan drowning himself. And the best part is that the only charge is $5 per car to park, so we split it and hey, $2.50 for an afternoon of FUN! (and the EPIC NAP after returning home) was worth it.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

A Most Helpful Baby

I am loving Nathan's newfound sense of altruism. We brought him to my parents' cabin in NH for a few days over the holiday weekend - he brought a box of cereal in from the car all by himself. Today he brought in a package of toilet paper as I was unloading groceries. Usually I have to leave the groceries and take him in by himself, so this saves me quite a bit of effort.

Mike has even taught him to follow basic commands. Like today, Mike pointed at the cup of ice water he'd accidentally left across the room. With a little prodding, Nathan actually picked it up and brought it to him- without even spilling any, bonus! He can also be told to clean things off the floor and place them in the trash.

This is why we had kids, right? To make them do our bidding?

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Sunset, Fourth of July 2010, Gloucester MA

View off the back deck as I was hanging laundry.


As I was snapping these, two girls were having a loud fight in the street. Gloucester: Like Allston, but with more seafood.

Friday, July 2, 2010


So my unemployment officially ran out, which means we're down a good chunk of income every week. It's going to be pretty tough, nearly impossible, for me to swing finding a job - I'll be going to school three days a week starting in 2 months, and Mike will be working the days I'm off. Working on the weekends and leaving Nathan with my in-laws is a possibility, but I'm trying to take a full course load because that's what financially works best as far as grants and tuition waivers go, and it'd be silly to fail out of school for a minimum wage job 16 hours a week.

What is in my control is keeping the expenses to a bare minimum. For instance, the dryer is off-limits until October or whenever it gets way too cold and gross to dry things outdoors. I didn't mind drying stuff outside, but I'd throw it in the dryer to fluff it up for 15 minutes to my jeans weren't all hard and gross, but not now. I just deal with it. It builds character!

The eating out? Not anymore. We'll set a budget of say, $60 a month for eating out - that's 3 trips to the sub shop or Chinese place, which I think is more than reasonable for a month. Of course, if any of us make an emergency pit stop for fast food or something, that counts against the cap.

I don't tend to buy much as far as clothing, and I have maternity clothes leftover from when I was pregnant with Nathan - sure, it's mostly business casual, but I'll look overdressed while I clean the kitchen - no biggie! Nathan's not in need of anything, neither is Mike - we're still pretty lucky in so many respects, we don't really *need* much of anything at all. We'll survive, totally.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Oh Crap, I'm Nesting.

Mike's been home for a few weeks now on short-term disability since his shoulder is messed up, so I've had time to actually accomplish projects since there's two people to watch the baby.

Since Mike's been home, he's also been amassing bicycles and their assorted parts, which has made our already messy and unorganized workshop room into a total disaster area. A few months ago I started work on that room, putting our old kitchen table in as a workbench and hanging wire shelving above, with labelled plastic bins for everything. It was a start, but it was still nearly impossible to get in there and find what we needed. I decided some shallow shelves on an odd-shaped wall would help get stuff off the floor.

So in the interest of organizing, I sent Mike off to Home Depot with a list, and he came back with everything I needed for shelving, and in the time he was gone I was able to paint the area where the new shelves would go with leftover paint from Nathan's room.


The entire thing was pretty short money. I asked him to get two 1"x6"x8' boards and have them cut into 30" sections, making 6 shelves (and a tiny bit of scrap), which was $15.98 altogether. He also grabbed 12 cheap shelf brackets at $.78 each, and a pack of 100 screws with anchors for $3.98. So the whole project was roughly $30.


Yeah, I still have a long way to go. But if I need spray paint and a sledgehammer, I am IN LUCK.