Thursday, August 28, 2008

What a speech, what a night

Our whole family sat rapt tonight as we watched the last night of the Democratic Convention in Denver, Colorado. It was an amazing event, capped off by speech after speech that spoke to the concerns I and so many others have about the direction our country has taken and what it will take to get it back on track.

From Richardson to Gore to Obama's wonderful finale, it was a night filled with hopefulness and clear articulation of the problems, priorities and possible solutions the Obama/Biden team have identified.
Ava: Babies for Obama

The speech delivered and should have silenced the hollow carping of critics by providing specifics about taxes and social security, and even deftly covering the hot button issues of gays and lesbian rights, abortion rights and gun rights.

68 days until every voter can weigh in. I can't wait.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Sunny day sushi

Enjoying a sunny day having some sushi with Ava. Rice and veggies for her. She's a great eater.

We followed this up with a short stint at a Queen Anne wading pool that featured a lifeguard playing classic Motown and dance hits from the 80s. I walked Ava for several laps around the pool (she's still practicing the whole "walking" thing) and she shimmied to the music whenever we paused. Like her dad, she's quite the music connoisseur. Me and my mom claim credit for the dancing ability. :-)

We wrapped up the night with a first-ever parents solo night out, courtesy of J.'s parents. It was a little harrowing for them: Ava doesn't see them as much as we'd like so she was NOT happy to be left.

J.'s mom said she tried leaving Ava on the couch for a little Cry It Out effort. Ha! Good luck. She's got lungs like an Aida in training. Finally, her screaming was reaching such a fevered pitch, they closed all the doors and windows so the neighbors wouldn't think the worst was underway inside! After a quick call to Ava's baby-whisperer Aunt Bern, J.'s mom turned on some dance music, which calmed Ava right down and had her shaking and grooving her little diapered tush and torso to the beat. She followed it up by letting the no-longer screaming Ava drift off to sleep on her chest, which is where we found her when we returned.

Conversely, while keeping our cell phones within view for potential calls about Ava, we had a lovely hour and a half to ourselves to chat and laugh over dinner without once retrieving napkins, silverware or stray food from the floor, followed by a leisurely walk around the nearby shops and restaurants enjoying the warm summer evening.

We definitely need to do that more often. With a few days to recover, I think J's mom and stepdad will be up for another visit again too.

Blue state humor

Can you tell Seattle is a blue stronghold?

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Friday, August 15, 2008

Playing hooky at the pool

With temperatures in Seattle in the upper 80s yesterday, I took some rare time away from the office (though still tethered by Blackberry) to take Ava to an area wading pool.

Here we are looking askance at the people cooling their dogs off in one of the pools. Um, WTH?! Is that not common sense, not to mention against the law, to not let your pooch frolic were babies play?

Luckily, there was another, less fouled water feature in which to wiggle our feet and continue efforts to figure out how these 11 month old legs work.

Isn't she cute in her little suit?
And here she is getting an assist from Dad in navigating the rockery. She seems to be a sun-lovin' baby like me. Whoo hoo! On days like this, that SAHM deal looks pretty attractive. Unfortunately, the homelessness my not working would cause in this expensive urban community would not be so attractive. So the juggling continues. But at least we have these sunny memories. :-)

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Er, um, uh, and other useless words

What's with speakers using the phrase "If you will" as generic filler while talking? It's no different from "er" or "um" and is just as useless. I just heard a speaker use the phrase twice to apparently provide greater insight into other words that were already clear!

"What we're seeing is a better - or improved, if you will - habitat." WTH?! Gee thanks. I couldn't have navigated the complexities of that sentence without your critical linguistic guideposts. I didn't even have to use these breadcrumbs I stashed in my pocket for just that purpose.

This is why people like me write speeches, craft talking points and provide media and presentation training. If communicating was easy, everyone would be doing it. :-)