chanaleh: (crow's nest)
Because this is exactly the kind of stuff that LJ (being, you know, a journal) is useful for recording:

I should start by noting that my friend Andy G (whom some of you remember from Brandeis) was visiting Chicago for a week around Memorial Day, and asked if he could come out and spend a day with us. He was staying most of the week with a friend way up in the north suburbs, but took the commuter train out here (about 25 minutes from our house, and just over an hour's ride from downtown) on Sunday morning. Aria and I picked him up and we all went to the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore. Baby's first beach day! Then we came back toward our house, and went out for deep-dish pizza -- along with another mutual Brandeis friend, Dara, who was my hallmate one year and is now a radiologist and turns out to have started a locum tenens position right here in Crown Point (at the hospital where Aria was born), so she'll be here every other week for at least the next few months. Looking forward to hanging out with her again while she's here.

Then, last weekend, [livejournal.com profile] ablock came to see us! He was planning a trip to Chicago for NANOG June 12-15, and on realizing that we're just an hour away, he asked if he should come out a day early in order to visit us. "YES!!!" I said. So he flew into Midway Airport on Saturday morning, and I drove there (right around an hour from us) and picked him up. After the requisite Dunkin' Donuts stop for Coffee Coolattas, we picked up a(nother deep-dish) pizza for lunch, and came back and hung out around the kitchen table for the afternoon, then around the patio for the evening while [livejournal.com profile] etrace grilled steaks for dinner. Which meant I skipped the erev-Shavuot learning session I would otherwise have tried to go to at the shul... but, well, at least we had ceremonial cheesecake baked by nephew J.

Due to the 98-degree heat wave and the fact that we have only two window a/c units, we took Aria into our room so that Unca Pup could sleep on the floor in Aria's room instead of sweltering in the music studio. This sounded like a fine idea at the time -- we'll just put her down in the playpen/porta-crib that's in our room anyway! -- except for the part where she HATES the porta-crib and screams the minute you try to transfer her down into it. So, she wouldn't go to sleep, and wouldn't stay asleep, and I let her come downstairs with us while we ate cheesecake, and then I ended up trying to keep her in the bed with us all night, which meant I didn't sleep more than 20 minutes at a time the entire night. UGH. It gave me a new appreciation for how well she sleeps in her own crib normally! :-P So we gave up on sleeping by about 8am, got up, made pancakes, hung out some more, and then I drove Pup to the 1:38pm commuter rail.

And yesterday, we drove 2 hours south to Indianapolis to meet up with [livejournal.com profile] jesse_in_boston and [livejournal.com profile] jedilora (plus her dad) and 3-year-old R, who had driven out from Boston for the SCA 50th Anniversary event June 18-25. We met for pancakes (at the delightfully named Hotcakes Emporium Pancake House Restaurant) and it was SUCH a pleasure to see them.

Plus, [livejournal.com profile] etrace has other good friends in Indianapolis that we never see, and it turned out they were going to be free yesterday afternoon/evening, so we went to see them afterwards. After a brief interim stop at the Holliday Park playground (Aria's first real baby-swing experience, though the slides were too hot to try out), we hung out at their lovely house, where Aria spent fully two hours toddling around nonstop (until she fell over for a 20-minute nap). Then we all went up to the nearby Broad Ripple neighborhood, walked a little bit of the Monon Rail Trail and through the Indianapolis Art Center sculpture grounds, and ended up at La Piedad for casual Mexican dinner. A long but really nice day.

In unrelated news, today is [livejournal.com profile] etrace's first Father's Day, yay! We're going out for prime rib in a couple hours -- an early dinner -- and invited my dad to come join us. Right now, baby is napping (making up for yesterday) and now that I've gotten all this out, I'm going to lie down for a few minutes too. <3

Introducing Aria

Wednesday, July 29th, 2015 06:00 pm
chanaleh: EVERYTHING WILL BE AMAZING (amazing)
(Oh, poor neglected LiveJournal. I still love you best, but that siren Facebook makes lazyposting so easy. I am backdating this by 3 weeks for ease of reference in future.)

Aria Grace was born Sunday, July 26 (Tisha B'Av observed) at 3:50 a.m., healthy and strong.

Photos )

Just for fun (and in time for Rosh Hashanah), we'll be sending out birth announcements the last week of August. If you've moved since you last received postal mail from me, please PM me with your current mailing address. :-)

One year

Monday, March 2nd, 2015 12:34 pm
chanaleh: [Erica and Aaron] (etrace)
I meant to acknowledge this (here and not just on Facebook) closer to the occasion, but... two Saturdays ago, Valentine's Day, was our first wedding anniversary.

Being as it was also a holiday weekend (clever of us to plan it that way), we drove up to New Buffalo, MI, for a two-night little getaway. Two consecutive steak dinners and an in-room two-person whirlpool. :-) Due to the snow, we didn't really go anywhere else... mostly stayed in our room, snuggled up watching TV and eating bonbons (literally). But that was perfect.

So we saw Chamber of Secrets and Serenity (#anniversarygeekaway)... and then the majority of the Saturday Night Live 40th anniversary retrospective on Sunday afternoon. Which was actually perfect too, because I really did want to see it, but at home we don't do broadcast TV, and even if we did I would never have sat in front of it for four hours, but that's exactly what we got to do.

The thing was, as I said to [livejournal.com profile] etrace once we got there: it's kind of a big deal for me to reach the first anniversary and be able to know that I still feel overjoyed and contented and thrilled about everything. "Yeah, I actually wondered about that," he said. Longtime readers will know why it's a big emotional hurdle for me to get past. But... we are here, and life is still the same: wonderful. Our life.

(But I was still glad we hadn't saved any frozen wedding cake to choke down. That's one tradition that I am permanently over.)

So, here is to the next year, and the next and the next, with the best and truest partner I ever had or could hope for. The one whose face (and brain and heart and everything else) makes me smile. The one I can't wait to go home and have lunch with every day. Like right now. :-)
chanaleh: (Default)
... I mean, a full-time housewife!
... I mean, a full-time freelancer! :-D

Because my last day at work was Friday. One more milestone down.

On Day 1 (Monday) I did what I thought was the majority of my taxes, only to find out that I was facing almost $2000 in taxes (federal + state) due to having earned almost $7500 in freelance income in 2013. So I spent the bulk of yesterday going back through my 2013 credit card statements to claim Every Single Possible Deductible Expense, with the help of a shiny new OpenOffice spreadsheet, and succeeded in getting that tax bill down to about $700. Go me!

Also, [livejournal.com profile] taylweaver had us over for lunch this past Shabbat, and [livejournal.com profile] jessruth came over on Sunday to help us start packing (and eat lentil stew and homemade cookies). And we packed another 5+ cartons of books last night, with more to come tonight.

Also, yesterday was Death of Windows XP Day. Sniff!
chanaleh: (breathe)
10. Last day of work before Passover vacation = veritable ghost town and leaving promptly at 5:30pm
9. Ordered flowers for my mom, to be delivered tomorrow to the rehab center (where she's recuperating from hip replacement surgery, you morons)
8. Picked up library books (one on reserve, a few more at random) for vacation
7. Obtained (with discount coupon from [livejournal.com profile] jessruth, huzzah) three nice bottles of wine to take to two seders
6. Picked up the belated Chanukah gift my brother sent me, and it's a PONY WITH FRICKIN' LASER BEAMS FOR EYES -- WiFi, 32GB, and complete with very Erica-colored lime green Smart Cover. Wow.
5. Reading Little Women, which I haven't read in years and am finding very nourishing
4. Taxes are successfully filed both for Honorable Menschen and for myself
3. Refunds total right around $2000 (yay being unemployed for two months?), which makes me feel better about paying for TurboTax
2. I have all day tomorrow to tackle laundry and grocery shopping -- and eat chametz and kitniyot at my leisure
1. I have decided to adopt an even less onerous de-chametzing process than usual, simply assigning all chametz (overt and residual) to the non-Jewish half of the household.
0. Speaking of whom, [livejournal.com profile] justom was home by 9pm! Hooray!

Amid the boxes

Wednesday, September 7th, 2011 12:39 pm
chanaleh: (kaylee/simon)
Here it is Wednesday, my third official morning as a New Yorker. :-} And the cable Internet guy came today, so we now have a happy little wireless router blinking away on top of the big bookshelf in the corner.

notes from W. 116th St., day 3 )

Also, I'm going to have to come up to Boston sometime in the next ~5 days to hand off my car to its buyer. I won't make it to the End-of-Summer Party (lunch plans with [livejournal.com profile] jessruth!), but am hoping to time things so as to get to see [livejournal.com profile] theatreatfirst's As You Like It. :-} I'll try to keep you all apprised.
chanaleh: Snoopy at the typewriter, pondering (snoopywriter)
If you are out walking on a summer evening -- or morning, or at any time -- and catch a waft of honeysuckle, you shall immediately stop walking, locate the nearby bush, approach, and smell it up close. This obligation applies no matter what your destination or lateness. Life is too short, and June too fleeting rare, to heedless pass the honeysuckle by.

Optional, for Jews: Recite the blessing on enjoying a fragrant tree: Baruch atah, Adonai, Eloheinu melech ha-olam, borei atzei besamim.
chanaleh: Snoopy in a Santa hat (xmas)
Some of the things worth being happy about today:
  1. The Arisia 2010 souvenir book (which I designed and produced) has been officially delivered to the printers!
  2. Last spring, I ordered a parka (one of those 3-in-1 "system" kinds with the zip-out insulated liner jacket) from Lands' End for $70 on end-of-season clearance. Startling news flash: Warm coats are good! )
  3. Modern medicine. Still.
  4. My boss, who is the Boss of Awesome (even though very occasionally the Boss of Tearing-Hair-Out), authorized me to work from home today, which I actually have been.
  5. Eggnog in my coffee (swapped in for milk; I bought a quart of it a couple weeks ago and finished it up this morning). You know how Starbucks sells eggnog latte this time of year? Like that, but with slightly less wretched excess.
  6. Staying in for movie-watching and Chinese takeout at [livejournal.com profile] ablock & M's tonight.
  7. Just in time for Jewmas (speaking of which)... Sherlock Holmes opens tomorrow. When I saw the trailer for it over the summer, my first reaction was a slightly stunned, "Wow, I think that movie just hit me right in the fandom." Robert Downey Jr.! Hot hot steampunk detective action! 10am showing at Boston Common!
  8. Relatively quiet weekend ahead.
  9. I successfully mailed off half my family Xmas presents yesterday morning. Granted, that's only half, but it's half a load off my mind. (Further post on this topic brewing for later.) Now to go finish wrapping and find a post office that's staying open until 5pm today, for the rest!
  10. I am loved.
And God bless us, every one.
chanaleh: (sleeping)
Things of which [livejournal.com profile] chanalehs require an inexhaustible supply:

Novelty socks
Umbrellas
Mary Chung's egg drop soup
Cobalt blue glassware
Dichroic glass (jewelry and otherwise)
Peanuts memorabilia (in general)
Snoopy Band-Aids (in particular)
Lip balm
Mineral bath salts (anything from Epsom to Dead Sea)
Read more... )
Sunshine
Lenience for tardiness :-}

... and with that, it's off to the grocery store with me.
chanaleh: (mandala)
1. [livejournal.com profile] gilana, call your office: Pantone consumer products!
cut for shiny linkage )

2. Out of the sheer kindness of her little heart, [livejournal.com profile] sen_ichi_rei made me hand-knitted gloves! Fingerless gloves, perfect for computing! They are purple and green!
cut for shiny photo )

3. In unrelated news, as of this morning, my office has new carpeting which is blue and purple and -- not really any green, but still also pretty.

4. Storyteller and local character Brother Blue passed away last night. Alav ha-shalom.

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