The Universe Is Clearly Telling Us To Stay Home and Read

Hello hello!

Good gracious, we are buried in massive piles of snow!  We may not be leaving the house again until spring! 

Our yard as seen from the back door, which was as far as I was willing to go 

It’s a little crazy out there.  Even Sunshine, who is normally fairly indomitable, peeks outside and is like, “Um, I can wait.  Until, say, April.” 

No, seriously.  It’s not that urgent.  Please don’t make me go out there. 

Luckily she has brave and stalwart Adam to go out and shovel a little path for her!

Woo hoo for the braver and stalwartier than me!

Brrrrr!  Ridiculous!  Did you see the news that there was snow today in all 50 states except Florida?  How bananas is that?

In warmer news, congratulations to all the ALA Award winners who were announced this week!  I can’t wait to read the Newbery Medal winner:

MoonOverManifest cover
Moon Over Manifest, by Clare Vanderpool

and the Printz Award winner (which was already on my must-read list!):

Ship Breaker, by Paolo Bacigalupi

and now, of course, the Caldecott Medal Winner:

SickDay AmosMcGee
A Sick Day for Amos McGee, written by Philip C. Stead, illustrated by Erin E. Stead

not to mention this Caldecott Honor Book, because how could anyone resist this title?

Interrupting Chicken, by David Ezra Stein

Hee!  For complete lists of all the winners, check out the ALA website!  And congratulations again to everyone!

Of course, now that I have a baby, part of me is like, hey, I should own all the Caldecott Winners, shouldn’t I?  Although perhaps I should wait until we’ve progressed past the book-gnawing, book-flinging, book-deshelving-with-glee stage.

30 seconds of Babyzilla at work

Too funny.  🙂

I have to say, so far there is only one thing about being a parent that really drives me nuts, and it’s not diapers or being tired.  It’s having dreadful children’s music stuck in my head ALL THE TIME.  “Jimmy Crack Corn” is my particular nemesis right now.  OMG BRAIN SHUT UP.  We don’t even have that many toys which sing, and the baby has excellent taste in grown-up music, so I know I should be grateful for the limited exposure I’ve had so far.  And he loves the thing with the incessant “Jimmy Crack Corn”, so I can’t take it away from him.  But YARGH I say, YARGH.

The other thing I’ve noticed about most of the singing children’s toys is that they have three settings: basically, Off, Loud, and Quiet (or you might say On vs. Quieter On).  Who would ever not choose Quieter On?  Seriously?  “Oh, look, I could be hearing ‘Jimmy Crack Corn’ 400 times a day even louder.  HooRAY.”  This strikes me as an entirely psychological/marketing decision.  The toy manufacturers know they could just give parents on and off to choose from, but this way they can put “with a low volume setting!” on the box, or whatever.  We look at the toy and think, well, it won’t be so bad if we keep it on the Quiet mode, right?  HRMMMM.  Sneaky, toy manufacturers.  I’m on to you!

Also, hilariously, most of Jonah’s singing toys don’t like to be ignored.  For instance, he’ll play with Singing Toy A for a while and then get distracted by Silent Toy B and start playing with that instead.  Three or four minutes later, Singing Toy A will be like, “DING DING DINGALING BOOOP,” usually with a few flashing lights, as if to say, “HellOOOOO, where’d you GOOOOO don’t you MISS ME?”  Even if it’s just a quick ding-a-boop noise, it totally works; Jonah is like, “whoa, did that thing just boop at me?” and goes back to playing with Singing Toy A.  Which only encourages it to keep acting out like that, if you ask me.  Stern face, Singing Toy A!  Please allow my baby to go play with quiet things if he wants to!

All right, I’d better go put in some Serious Writing Time, yes sir.  I took a break this evening to watch Off the Map, as promised, which is extra-super-pretty in HD, although we nearly had a total crisis because the satellite dish was covered in snow or something (GAH!), which meant the TV didn’t think it was recording Off the Map OR Top Chef PANIC PANIC PANIC!  (Guess who solved this problem?  I’ll give you a hint: brave and stalwart!  We do love him.) 

So far I think:  It is WEIRD to hear Matt Saracen sounding just a bit not like himself; I didn’t even realize he was putting on an accent for Friday Night Lights (I assume).  And I think it’s hilarious that they’re like “Uh, Somewhere in South America, don’t ask questions.”  That way we can have anacondas and sting rays and beaches and coconuts and zip lines and tiny jungle villages with superstitious natives and 200 miles from civilization, without having to actually figure out a place that might have all those things.  Also, I can’t believe this clinic hired three doctors who don’t speak any Spanish.  Seriously?  Out of “hundreds of applicants”, they couldn’t find any Spanish-speakers?

It’s possible I’m missing the forest for the trees (or the jungle for the coconuts) here.  :-)  But I’ll keep watching for now anyhow…

Stay cozy!  Here’s wishing you all warm blankets and good books and tea and banana bread and someone furry on your feet!  🙂

Quote of the Day:
Christobel studied him without appearing to do so, and then, when he continued to seem unaware of it, told him what she was doing.
“I’m looking at you from under my eyelashes,” she said.
“I know,” said Anthony.
The Tricksters, by Margaret Mahy (This book:  SO. AMAZING.)