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Halloween: Our Neighborhood's Pre-Winter Last Hurrah

Wednesday, October 31, 2007
One of the things I love most about Halloween is the way it brings everyone outdoors for one last hurrah before the snow starts to fall and everyone is less inclined to stand outside and chat for prolonged periods of time.

I tend to end up pulling front door duty -- handing out the loot to the one hundred or more trick-or-treaters who wind their way through our subdivision every year -- which means I have to stay within candy-grabbing distance of the front door.

My husband takes our 10-year-old trick-or-treating while the three teenagers do their own thing: either hanging out with friends or waiting to scavenge any cast-off candy from their younger brother when he arrives home in one of those magical moments that can erupt between siblings.

"Yuck. I hate this kind. It tastes like toothpaste. Here -- you can have it."

Warm Drink, Cool Day.
Originally uploaded by Ann Douglas.

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| posted by Ann D @ 12:02 AM

Happy Lites, Attention-Craving Spiders, and ALL ABOUT YOU

Tuesday, October 16, 2007
It's been quiet around here lately -- partially because I've been quiet around here lately.

I've been hard at work on book revisions, dealing with the transition to home-schooling my youngest (with fabulous support from a teaching assistant), and trying to find the recipe for calm (given that this is the time of year when I'm inclined to start sliding into the Land of SAD.

[Want to know the truth about SAD? The word "SAD" doesn't even begin to describe what I went through two years ago -- which was bad -- and last year -- which was which was ten times worse. I felt like I had been tossed down Alice's rabbit hole from November through late April. So this year, I'm determined to stop SAD in its tracks with daily doses of Happy Lite therapy. This year, in addition to working the beating-the-blues plan I posted last year, I'm going to try light therapy. I'll let you know how that works out. My doctor recommends this treatment and there seems to be a fair bit of research recommending it, so I'm going to give it a whirl. Besides I kind of like the idea of parking myself under a Happy Lite and drinking coffee, like the woman in Photo D (see previous link). Now that's a treatment I can get into.]

But enough about me.

How are you? I feel like we haven't had a real heart-to-heart talk in a while.

I know I'm a bit behind in my blog mail (my apologies to those of you to whom I owe a personal reply. I will catch up soon. (I'm feeling really guilty about the sleep answer I owe one of you -- and promised a week ago. It's just been a really tough week.)

The wackiest part of my week? Having the security alarm at the office set off at 4 am by a spider early Monday morning. I know Charlotte has to be creative in make her message heard -- but really.

So for now, let's catch up via the blog (or via your blog, with a link back so that we can comment on your meme).

Here are five quick questions:

1. What's the best thing that's happened to you lately?

2. What's the weirdest/wackiest/strangest/oddest thing that you've noticed (or that's happened to you) lately?

3. What are you really passionate about these days?
(diy anything, chocolate, consumerism, world peace)

4. What are you doing for fun?
(If you're not doing something for fun, you better do something right now or you won't have anything to put in this category.)

5. What else should we know about you right now?
(say it in words, image, audio, video, whatever)

About the photo, above: A gift from Marla. [Note to Marla re: the albino corn snake: No!]

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| posted by Ann D @ 10:36 AM

Flintstones, Flickr, and Retro Fun

Thursday, October 11, 2007
I woke up with this tune in my head -- it's my 21st wedding anniversary today -- so I was thrilled to be able to find the full Flintstones "Happy Anniversary" video clip at YouTube.

Also on the "looking back" and "anniversary" themes, I had some fun with Flickr this morning -- typing "husband" and "retro" into the search engine that chooses images from anything and everything remotely relevant it can find on the site. That produced such cool results (and a few way-out-there-bizarro ones, too). Of course, the photo pool may have shifted by the time you view the slide show I produced with the photos that came up. That's the nature of Flickr. But I imagine there will still be lots of funny, heartwarming, and gloriously tacky stuff. Enjoy.

And if you're totally into Flickr! (like I am), you may want to check out the five Flickr! project ideas for parents and kids I blogged about this week over @ Yahoo! Parenting lifestyle.

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| posted by Ann D @ 9:33 AM

Baby Gear, E-Cons, and Velcro Kids

Thursday, October 04, 2007
Usually I do a pretty good job of letting you know what I've been posting about in my Yahoo! Parenting blog, but I just realized I haven't done that in nearly a month. Here's a quick roundup of what I've been posting about over there, in case you want to join in the conversation:

  • Baby Must Haves vs. Baby Nice to Haves: How to Tell the Difference

  • Prevent Your Kids from Getting E-Conned

  • Love You Like Velcro: Grownup Kids Who Won't Leave Home -- Or Won't Stay Away
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    | posted by Ann D @ 3:10 PM