Saturday, January 22, 2011

Inspired by MACrochet on ETSY

Orange, black and white may make for an interesting choice of layette for a new baby, IF, said new baby was not born in the Bay Area, and didn't have San Francisco Giants fans who loved him.

I thought long and hard about what to do with these colors, that could work up pretty fast because I had a deadline, and that wouldn't be too overwhelming and too Halloween-ish. Then I spied a blanket worked up by MACrochet on ETSY and decided to go with it. I changed a few things such as border and color placement, while keeping the integrity of the fun Maze pattern. It was a hit.

Friday, January 21, 2011

We're In!

Never has a smile been so bright

I managed to do the unthinkable: I pulled one over on the girl. She had her suspicions, and there were times when I felt cornered, but I held on to my little secret; even with my car literally packed to the max, I held out. I'm glad I did. Do you see the sheer joy radiating off her face? That kind of excitement could only come at the end of a complete surprise.

She wasted no time spreading out a few of her favorite things. She immediately recognized the new found freedom of having her own personal space again, to do in whatever she wants, when she wants. She jumped up and down, and was completely wrapped up in the moment of "cool" and the idea of "no more rules". It is true, this here is a totally different place.

We settled in on our air mattress, snuggled in the comfort of each other, and the comfort in knowing that the storm that was, is now over.

Now, on to the storm of moving boxes and delivery trucks, at once!

Saturday, January 15, 2011

I Think It's Safe to be Excited

There have been all kinds of processes - progressive processes, but processes nonetheless, but I think it's finally safe. According to yesterday's meeting with management, Operation Nyumbani commences in 3 days! The sun is finally breaking through the clouds. No more shared living of the forced kind. I swear, I'm gonna feel just like Amy Merrick! There is truly nothing like having your very own space. As the assurance sinks in, I am going to try not to allow myself to become too overwhelmed by the details. As much of a joy this move is for Emma and I, let's be real, we all know that moving is hardly ever a joy. To my benefit, my storage space is small, and there aren't that many heavy pieces, but the particulars are still gonna be tiresome. I'm ready! And thanks to this holiday weekend, I just may be able to pull off my "surprise" without much difficulty. Stay tuned...

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Up Close and Personal

I went and did it. And now my brain is literally laid across my backseat, wrapped in a neat package, waiting to be viewed by my doctor. It was an interesting experience, being stuffed into that narrow tube, with the song of machinery ringing through my earplugs. A necessary experience. One that will bring me some kind of peace within the next 9 days. I'm sure there isn't anything in there that shouldn't be, nothing out of the ordinary churning in my matter. I just need to be sure. Sometimes, it just isn't enough for a doctor to tell you that you're fine without a proper assessment. Sometimes, you just have to take the extra steps to make sure. I feel a little less stressed now that I've done that.

On to the fun stuff.

Monday, January 10, 2011


Kinda hard to believe that I've been working in my office for four months already. Equally hard to believe how well I've been received. Not that I was expecting to not be well received, I just thought there would be more of a breaking in period, but I guess, when you arrive to work early each work day, and you are willing to stay late and work as many extra days as they have to offer, you have a greater chance of becoming a favorite. These days, especially because we are all hustling to get what we can find, and keep what we've managed to get, there aren't many who can say that they enjoy what they are currently doing. For now, I can honestly say that I do. What's not to enjoy? I was fortunately enough to land in a Village, where the people are for the people. The stress is minimal (for now), I am learning new things, and being rooted in this setting sure did help me in my apartment search.

I'm looking forward to seeing what all I can take from this place and its people in the next 11 months, and I am eager to reinvest all that I learn into a company that has invested in me.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Creative Thinking

What helps to pass a slow day along? Losing yourself in beautiful home decor and cool storage solutions. I've been all about it lately. I spent a couple of hours in Barnes and Noble's magazine section last week. I picked up a couple of mags that have some great inspiration. And today's San Francisco Chronicle featured the familiar designs of Aphrochic. I remember seeing beautiful Aphrochic pillows featured on My Brown Baby.

Currently on the brain: color, space, organization, peace, comfort, vanity, pillows, bins and baskets, flowers, container gardens, command strips, casters, labels, and journaling.
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Saturday, January 8, 2011

Self Preservation: Preventative Measures

So, is preventing a patient from voicing all of her health concerns a part of preventive medical care? I've sat in the office with my grandmother while her doctor frequently interrupted her, hurrying her to state her case so that she could quickly treat and move on down the assembly line. I've heard others talk about how they've not been listened to, but rather handed the first explanation/diagnosis/line of treatment that "sounded" like it fit the symptoms. I sat in my own doctor's office last week and received the same treatment from a stand-in doc (my doctor took a spontaneous leave of absence). One would think that if you're sitting before a patient, at a follow up visit, and the only background knowledge you have is in the chart on your lap, you'd shut the hell up and let the patient tell you why the both of you are there. Its more than a little frustrating when you have real medical concerns, and you are being rushed along by your caregiver because of overbooking.

My regular doctor doesn't really think that my splitting headaches are migraines, and kind of thinks that I shouldn't really be that concerned about the fact that they always occur on the left side of my head, and my eye exam yielded some weird findings in my left eye that couldn't determine the cause of my headaches. My chart revealed the beginnings of an order for an MRI. The regular didn't even submit the request before she left! Luckily I didn't have to present a thesis to the stand-in to get her to push it through. If these really aren't migraines (which the stand-in said they most likely are) I'd kinda like to know if I'm at risk for a frickin' aneurysm or something. You never know. My grandmother wasn't expecting to learn that she had a tumor behind her left eye, let's hope there isn't anything hiding behind mine.

Friday, January 7, 2011

Friday Fill-Ins

1. It's 2011; I think it's about time to shake things up.

2. Tickles his pickles.

3. Thankfully I have my middle fingers.

4. Hugs and kisses are some of the best things in life.

5. I am so ready for some action.

6. Countless little boys have been victims of the infamous bowl cut.

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to sinking deep within the covers where hopefully the cooties can't find me, tomorrow my plans include peering out into an empty parking lot from behind my desk and Sunday, I want to be released from this awful cough!

To participate in Friday Fill-Ins, click here.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Leo Tufurahi Hakuna Matata

"Today let us be happy, there are no problems"
From Swahili song Jambo Bwana

When you are one of those luckiest-unlucky people, there are always problems, but, well, you know...

If we're Facebook friends, then you may have noticed me mention a little something about being rear-ended on the freeway on my way "home" from picking up Emma from school yesterday. Literally the last thing that anyone needs to happen at the end of their day. Luckily, the only injury was to my bumper, but I walked away from the ordeal angry and disgusted. Sitting with the fact that, not only did the whole thing occur because a driver was not paying attention to the road while driving in commuter traffic, but he spent the entire time trying to talk me out of reporting it to his insurance agency. He was damn near begging me not to, telling me that my damages could be buffed out, we could handle things on our own, and this and that. The more he pleaded, the angrier I became. I'm on the side of the road, on a dark busy freeway, with a child in the backseat, and this dude is talking to me about insurance premiums! He could have killed us. He could have hurt my child. When it comes to her safety, all bets are off and the gloves come on. As with most immediate events that I have little control over, I wanted the whole thing to stop and just disappear. I kept looking at my baby, while digging through my purse to retrieve my pen, to get information that he was not trying to give me. So, first he hits me, then insults me by telling me how I should remedy the damages that he caused, and then insults me again by trying to talk his way out of giving me his information. Thank God for tough kids, quick thinking, and my ability to overthink situations. Had Emma shed one tear, this guy's ass would have gotten handed to him in a hand basket!

I really don't like to feel like I'm being taken advantage of in any situation. My thinking becomes a little devious then, because I wont be played willingly. I feel like this guy was really trying to play me, and play me hard. He was trying to dust off the debris and get the hell out of dodge without fully taking responsibility for what he could have done to a mother and her child. Bastard!

Thankfully, other plans were in the cards. So, we get to live AND drive another day.

Impromptu Puff

Notice anything funny in the pictures?

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

I Had a Feeling

It was after 9pm, and we were in the midst of our usual, reading all about the Adventures from the Black Lagoon. Those sounds, those distantly familiar POP POP POPs, sounded as if they were right outside our window. The fact that we are located on a second floor immediate started the wheel turning in my brain. My mind left the story and settled on the idea of stray bullets flying through the window. Can't you just see the headline now? Mother is Struck and Killed by Stray Bullet as She Reads Bedtime Story to Daughter. Its not like mothers don't ever take bullets that were meant for someone else. I just had a feeling. The sounds were too close and I was too uncertain. Was this a drive-by? Were they just shooting up in the air? And if so, where do those bullets usually land? And then came the second hail of gunfire, this time more automatic, followed by the loud screams of sirens about 5 minutes later.

I told Emma that we'd save the next chapter for the next night. I tucked her in and hit the lights. A mixture of concern and street smarts. I've been hear before. I'm equipped to deal with this. But this time, I have a child to protect, one who knows nothing about street survival, about hood survival, one who peeked through the blinds upon hearing gunshots for the very first time in her life. Lord, I forgot this child grew up in Albany, where folks don't do shit quite like this.

An announcement over the radio during the morning commute, and so it was confirmed.

"A stray bullet went through the wall of a house in the 1100 block of 89th Avenue, hitting a 49-year-old man who was in his bedroom watching television. He was hit in the back and is expected to recover... six wounded in East Oakland shooting... It was the most victims shot in Oakland at one time since nine people were shot Oct. 31 at a downtown Halloween party" - The Oakland Tribune

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Self Preservation: Reconnecting

Samsung Vibrant

It was just a matter of time before it had to happen. I just could not possibly go on, in this day and age, flipping a SideKick around. Today, having a SideKick is kind of equivalent to having a Nokia! Its one of those phones that used to be hot, but has now simply seen its days. There is only so much that it can still do in this world of apps. Its been great to me over the years, but as I navigate spaces that are poorly connected, and encounter places beyond my reach, its clear that the SideKick and I have outgrown each other. Enter: Samsung Vibrant. Its a DROID and it surely does kick my old Kick's ass. That whole not being able to blog on the spot because of the weak wifi signal problem I was having? Solved. I can now blog on the go with my Blogger app. No more hustling to print out directions before taking a trip, I can just use my Maps app to get the directions that I need. And it comes with the movie Avatar preloaded, which works when you have a bored kid in the backseat. Compared to what I was working with, this phone rocks, and makes life on the go a bit more convenient.

All a part of my journey toward self preservation. At the end of the day, a business woman needs a business phone. That is what I say to myself when I start rethinking whether I should have made the investment, which really wasn't that big of an investment thanks to smart shopping.

Have you gotten any new toys for yourself lately?

Monday, January 3, 2011

Back to Business

Sadly, vacation time has come to an end and its back to hitting the hay so that we can hit the road. That 6am alarm wasn't as painful as I thought it would be - it still left a sting though. I'm looking forward to the mornings were I get to turn that alarm clock waaaaay back because there will be no traffic to fight. Luckily, a little night prep got us out and on our way, arriving way ahead of schedule. So far so good.

A part of our night prep included hair. Since we hadn't really tended to hair in a week or so, Emma had two big dry braids the night before the return to school. I had planned to get her washed and styled over the break, but we were moving and shaking. No worries for us. Nothing a little Organics Root Stimulator Shea Butter Detangling Moisturizer Lotion and a simple banded style couldn't fix.

We just threw on her satin bonnet and she was good to go this morning. As for my hair, its growing pretty nicely. As it grows, I will be paying more attention to it and giving it more attention. My laid back lifestyle lends to a dry head some times. With this brisk winter air, I am sitting up and taking notice that I could be doing a whole lot better with moisturizing both my and Emma's hair. On on it! I'd really like to rock another puff soon, so I think I might do a blow out, assuming I remember where I packed the dryer =/ Either way, I'll be doing a length check soon. I love taking in my hair's progress, especially since I started out bald!

How was your first day back in action?

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Looking Toward Tomorrow

I was at my grandmother's house when I got the call. I had been expecting it. And although all of the I's were dotted and the T's crossed, I was expectedly nervous. It could have gone either way, and I tried to prepare myself for that.

It was the property manager, calling to give me the final decision. I stepped away into an empty room to receive the news. He told me that the owner had decided that she'd like to rent to me. Say what now? And just like that, all was well in my mind. I'd just received the best Christmas gift EVER! Ain't nothing better than a brand new permanent address, especially when you've spent the last ten months without one.

I've decided not to share the news with Emma. Partly because I want to shield her from any potential disappointment should something unexpected happen and the deal falls through. And of course I want to shield myself from her daily move-in date inquiry that is already foreseen. But most importantly, I want to present this gift to her in the most meaningful of ways. A good old fashioned surprise.

Here's the plan. I want to move some of our things in, preferably her things, pick her up from school and take her there. Unlock the door and show her to her new room. I can see it now, and i'll try to make sure that you do too by remembering to get some pictures of the special moment when it all goes down.

So, when are we moving in? That is still being determined. I can say that it will be soon! Watch us take flight as we chase a housewarming!
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Saturday, January 1, 2011

Conventional and Unconventional

2011 rang in, cuddled up with my love, with Avatar playing on the little screen, raindrops on my window pane, gunshots throughout the neighborhood, and I think, a few fireworks mixed in for effect.

Oh, and this morning, during my first of the year potty run, I discovered that my underwear were wrong side out. Sign of good luck to come perhaps?

Happy New Year!