Friday, September 30, 2011


[Try singing that to the tune of Iggy Pop's "Nightclubbing."  Yeah, it's incongruous.]

Since before we moved here, I've been among the glorious ranks of the unemployed.  I'm looking for something, but since the media industry never quite flocked to Denver, and since the economy is in the crapper, it's slow going. 

In the mean time, though, I have really been enjoying myself and my (presumably temporary) housewife gig. I didn't expect to like it this much, but not working during a Colorado summer is pretty hard to beat!  I'm outside with the girls (or just the Bunny during the Bug's school days) every day, usually a couple of times.  We've gone to museums, the zoo, parks, tourist attractions.  It's cool!

Still, I struggle with it a little.  So much of my time - of my identity - has been wrapped up in my career for years now.  Then all of a sudden, no commute or job or colleagues.  I don't make any money, nor do I wear makeup or (for that matter) shoes other than flip-flops.  My closet is wasting away while I wear jeans and t-shirts. I actually like to talk about politics and the economy and travel and other subjects that don't often come up when I'm pushing my kid on a swing.  It's a change.  Plus, I am a lousy housekeeper.  I seriously dislike cleaning, I'm not even very good at it and I am really, really slow. 

I miss work, and I am grateful to have a couple of projects to keep me sharp.  Every conference call reminds me that I really do enjoy working, and that I am pretty good at it, too.  I love my kids, but running errands with me all day has nothing on the fun and stimulation they get at school or even the super daycare we found for the Bunny.  It'll be great to have our routine back, but until then, I'll just keep on chilling at the park.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

San Diaaaago, which of course is German for...

Aunt Jessie sent this to the Bug and the Bunny from a weekend wedding party in San Diego (of which you probably know the word origin, if you've seen Anchorman).  Anyhoo, the Bug loves the koala in the picture and has been carrying it around since it arrived in our mailbox!

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Lair o' the Bear

The Colorado Indian Summer is something to be savored; September has got to be the most beautiful month here!  So on Saturday, we bailed on our errands and took the girls on a hike. 

The Bunny and the Bug, hiking together.
One superior thing that Jefferson County has done was to fund "Open Space" parks, some of which are pretty spectacular.  Yesterday I went on a trail run in Elk Meadow, which is near our house in Evergreen, and Saturday we explored Lair o' the Bear, which is between Evergreen and Morrison.  We'd learned of it in a book about great Colorado hikes for kids, and it did not disappoint.  The flat path along Bear Creek was a blast for the kids, with a bunch of places to walk right down to the water and make mud pies.  After crossing a bridge, our path led us slightly uphill for a while, too, and the girls loved the view.  It was such a pleasure to get fresh air on a beautiful day, doing something we could all enjoy - and the girls hiked about a mile on their own!

Bear Creek runs between the meadow and Bruin Bluff.

An artist had set up easels along the creek.

Looking down Bear Creek from the Dipper Bridge.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

MLK, Jr. Memorial, Washington DC

We finally got our first postcard sent to this house - Mima visited my sweet twin nephews Caleb and Wyatt last week.  While on her Maryland adventure, she, Shane and Ali took the boys into Washington, DC for their first visit to The Mall.  They got to check out this lovely new memorial, visit with a couple of friends and have a wonderful day in general.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Welcome to the doghouse

The Bug continues to be an enthusiastic artist, and her work is increasingly recognizable.  She also has an incredible fondness for scissors and tape, so rare is my opportunity to whisk anything away for the scanner (or the fridge or the wall or her grand/great-grandparents).  Today she did a marvelous self-portrait, complete with knees, earrings and rain clouds, but since it was partially done in highlighter (rather than marker), it won't scan.

This gem, however, was created last night.  It's multimedia: construction paper, marker, tape and (it bears inclusion since its presence is felt if not actually seen) scissors. 

In the middle is the doggie.  Clockwise from lower right you see the door, his bed, his chair... and his skateboard.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

9.11, ten years later

It's 10pm in Colorado, and the tenth anniversary of 9.11 technically begins in two hours.

I will never forget September 11, 2001.  I can't.  Every minute of that day, and of the days that followed, is burned into my brain.  I wrote about it when bin Laden was killed, so I don't need to remind you of my 9.11 story.  But every New Yorker has one, and we all remember.  But I have avoided all of the ceremonial hoo-ha as much as possible. I don't like it.

I know New Yorkers who feel differently.  Those who believe the ceremonies are important; that they'll help our nation to stay vigilant.  I do not.  I may no longer be a New Yorker, but I spent many years as one.  And from this New Yorker's point of view, we don't need ceremony.  Ceremony was of no consequence when bin Laden was dumped overboard, and there's been no other milestone that mattered.  The tribute lights went back on at the Trade Center this week.  While they are on, let them shine bright.  Let these lights tell the world that New York was not bested; that the United States was not bested.  Let the lights give passers-by a reason to pause, or a reason to remember the dead, or a reason to think warmly of their unharmed loved ones.  Let these lights remind us all of the democratic revolution that is well underway in the Middle East.  Remind us that Al Qaeda was always destined to be the loser.

September 11 may be a date that many people will remember, but city memorials and firefighter fundraisers and other crowd-rousing events don't mean a thing.  Yeah, I'll remember September 11.  I'll remember it until I die, privately.

And you know what else I'll remember?  Fuck you, bin Laden.  You lost.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Two-month post-move report

So apparently we've been in Colorado for more than two months - time, she flies!  It's been great, and I have learned a ton about everything from the difference between houses and condos (the former is much bigger, with larger potential mishap) to the difference between elk shit and deer shit (the former is much bigger, with larger potential mishap).  Here are some of my initial thoughts and reactions:

  • Elk.  Love 'em.  Seriously, can you ever get tired of seeing them?  They are huge (the Bunny initially thought they might be ponies), but funny looking (she was unconvinced).  Their herds can number in the scores, with mamas, babies, daddies all together - and in Evergreen, they hang out in yards.  Today, we passed one huge herd at least six separate times RIGHT DOWN FROM OUR HOUSE.  This, my friends, is cool.  Really fucking cool.
  • Running.  Hard.  Not only are we at 7300 feet of elevation, but in case you missed the news flash, mountains are hilly.  In other words, what goes down (ahhhh, easy-peasy), must come up (bugger this!).  I've finally gotten to where I don't feel like I am going to die every time I finish a run, but there is no question, it's harder here than at flat, Connecticut sea level.
  • Other wildlife.  So cool.  The kids love it - and the Bug mentioned the other day that she doesn't like a day to go by without seeing a deer or an elk.  I loved that.  There's a deer that has made his home around our place, and we miss him when he's not there.  We see squirrels and chipmunks and rabbits and hummingbirds and jays... not to mention the rainbow of wildflowers that grow right in our yard!  It's so beautiful and fun and the girls are in love.  Me, too.
  • Schools.  Awesome.  The Bug is in a fantabulous preschool program with amazing teachers and awesome parents and kids.  She loves it, even though she misses her old babysitter and school.  I've also visited a totally great potential daycare for the Bunny, where they take the kids on hikes every single day.  Don't get that in NYC, do you?
  • Friends.  Tough.  Being a married-with-kids grown-up in a new city doesn't provide tons of opportunities for mingling.  But the parents at the Bug's school seem cool, my family is close and both Joker and I have friends in the area.  It'll come.
  • Family.  Awesome.  I've seen my grandparents almost weekly, and the girls have the layout of their house totally nailed - they know where the toys (and the M&Ms) are without asking.  Hell, tomorrow I'm taking lunch over to their house because it's the Bug's fave place to go on her non-school day.  We see my parents and my sister super often.  It's a big reason why we moved here, and it's awesome.
  • Climate.  Mostly awesome.  Colorado weather is the best in the country.  It's sunny almost every day, and the seasons each explode with their unique excellence.  It is also extremely dry.  You will need your NetiPot, believe me.
So there you have it: two months of Colorado.