Like Sand In A Swim Diaper...

So. We're going to the beach tomorrow. I have been quietly and not-so-quietly freaking out about this trip for months now. Two adults. Three children. One challenging five year old. One tempestuous two year old. One BABY. Five days. Two boobs, one minivan, 156 miles, three hours, two bedrooms, one bathroom, seventeen million pounds of luggage and not nearly enough bottles of wine. Right now I'm packing. I'm kind of like this: There's just so much crap to drag along now, and it's up to me to remember every last bit of it, because Jason likes to pack as if we're heading for a stint on Survivor instead of comfy family vacation. A bathing suit and some rice! A toothbrush! Sunscreen if you're fancy! If I asked Noah to pack for the beach he'd toss one shoe, two red t-shirts and 500 Lego pieces into a suitcase and call it a day. Ezra might stick with the task a little longer, but would probably pack a lot of plastic food, a dozen stuffed animals and an outgrown Halloween costume. And don't tell Ike, but he's pretty much the most useless one of them all. God. So I'm here ping-ponging around... Read more →

Back From the Wilderness

Whoa. I've been away so long that Typepad logged me out of my blog publishing-y thing. And I couldn't remember my password. Or the real, actual word I'm thinking of when I call it my "blog publishing-y thing." So we went to New York! It was fantastic. I think I finally succeeded in gaining a million pounds, thanks to Travelocity and Restaurant Week and Mario Batali's Eataly where I ate pasta and then had a cheese plate and more pasta for dessert. Or maybe that was considered pre-dessert. We were there for like, four hours and didn't stop eating once. That was also where I spent a good 45 minutes staring at some poor random guy a few seats down from us at the crudo counter that I SWEAR was on an episode of Law & Order or something, only to realize once he got up and I was actually sitting directly next to Andrew Zimmern. You will all be terribly proud of me, I think, for managing to NOT start pointing and shouting "BIZARRE FOODS! Hey! You're BIZARRE FOODS! What up, BIZARRE FOODS. I TOTALLY CAN'T THINK OF YOUR REAL NAME RIGHT NOW, BIZARRE FOODS." Jason, always the bad... Read more →

Gnome Encounters, Part II

DORK ALERT. The Gnome recommended the cheese plate, but I wasn't convinced that would be cheesy enough. So...fake pose time! Also, for the record: MoMA is at 11 West 53rd Street, in case you find yourself at the mercy of the one cab driver in Manhattan who has apparently never heard of the Museum of Modern Art and attempts to drop you off a couple blocks away instead. "I'm pretty sure that's it," he said, pointing at a random storefront. "I'm pretty sure that's a Duane Reade," I said. I was right, but we got out of the cab anyway, because after pulling up MoMA's website to track down the exact address, I learned that it was closed on Tuesdays, and thus, yesterday. Because we excel at planning. Or this was just another attempt by the universe to save us from our excruciating lameness, since we decided to go to the museum in the first place to specifically see an exhibition about kitchen cabinets. And today, provided we are not foiled by Snowmaicesleetcapocalyptico 2011 or whatever the weather is doing outside right now (I have not looked out the window yet, our hotel room is still a dark closed-up tomb... Read more →

Gnome Encounters

Oh, hi there. FROM NEW YORK CITY! *awkwardly makes some imprecise hand gesture that I'm not sure actually means anything* Jason and I have escaped the clutches of our germ-encrusted children for a little getaway this week, where we can expose ourselves to culture and an entirely new city's worth of viruses and bacteria. Especially since it is, according to some very reputable cab drivers we've spoken to, approximately negative 57 degrees outside and you are risking iciclehood just by walking outside. We arrived yesterday. So far we've: 1) Learned about the effect of cold weather on Amtrak trains, which seems to be similar to the effect of snow, ice, rain, electrical storms, wind, understaffing, overcrowding and/or cows standing around on the track. In other words: DELAYS. LOTS OF 'EM. 3) Checked into hotel. 4) Stripped hotel bed and inspected for bedbugs. 5) Found no bedbugs. 6) Ate $8 container of hotel Pringles. 7) Took a nap. 8) Had dinner with my sister and brother-in-law. 9) Bought $1.77 replacement for hotel Pringles at drugstore. 10) Slept some damn more. Today should be every bit as exciting. And more! We're actually here with a little help from Travelocity for NYC Restaurant... Read more →

Why We Probably Never Get Invited Places

This story requires some background. In fact, I'd say this story is probably a good 95% background. This is the kind of story I would submit to my creative writing professor in college and get back with the words YES, AND....???? scrawled after the ending because the denouement was basically me running out of time at library that morning and then pretending that the unsatisfying, abrupt ending was ON PURPOSE, like even the WHOLE POINT, god, nobody GETS ME, it was DEEP and SOCIALLY-COMMENTATING-Y. Anyway! It is true, I was very misunderstood. Now let's all move on and pretend that this is a vaguely accurate rendering of the great state of Pennsylvania: If you believe the original boundary-deciding people all had raging meth habits, I think it kind of works. Now, I spent the first 19 years or so of my life in this general part of Pennsylvania: Basically, if you picture New Jersey as the head and shoulders of some old dude in profile (AND I BET YOU DO NOW), I grew up tucked directly under his chin. Jason also spent a good chunk of his adolescence in the same area, only in the town where M. Night Shyamalan... Read more →

BlogHer, Part One

Oh, hi. I'm at BlogHer. It's exhausting. It's awesome. I just had to get talked off a ledge by a really nice lady in the Hilton Package Room, who cheerfully looked at her computer and was all, "Yes, we have three packages waiting for you." And I was like, 'THREE? THAT'S IT? OH SHIT. OH SHIT." And then I yanked out my laptop to show three dozen or so Sparklecorn-related delivery confirmations like, "BUT I HAVE EVIDENCE! LOOK AT ALL THESE FIREFOX TABS!" And then she assured me that you know what? Their computer system is kind of shit. Everything is there, after all. As usual, BlogHer is bigger than ever, sponsor-y-er than ever, and more overwhelming than ever. I had one of those panicked moments yesterday when I resorting to Fake Texting on my phone in a hallway just to mask my sudden terror at realizing that there was no one around who I knew, or who knew me, or who seemed relatively open to small talk with a stranger, and I didn't really have anywhere in particular to be and Twitter's gone Fail Whale and OH WOW I FEEL CONSPICUOUS AND AWKWARD. So I pretended to tap on... Read more →

Trees, Knees and God-Knows-What Else (Nonsensical Bullet Point Edition)

I am feeling much better today, thank you. Not so much better, mind you, that I am capable of delivering a super-coherent blog entry or anything. I've yet to venture beyond Saltines, white rice and strawberry Jell-O, which means the best I can do for you today are some semi-deranged blood-sugary bullet points. Aren't you excited NOW. 1. Remember the tree that fell down after The Tornado That Apparently Happened While We Were In The Mall? This is what it looks like today: IT'S ALIVE!!!! No, actually, it's really not. A crew came by last week, hacked off all the branches, removed a couple of smaller trees that this one had taken out on the way down, and then just...propped it back up. And left it. You can still see the separation all around it on the ground, like a giant Christmas tree skirt, the only indication that this tree is NOT ACTUALLY ATTACHED TO ANYTHING, like it used to be. You know, like it was on the day it BLEW THE FUCK OVER. Things That Could Possibly Go Very Wrong Here: a) Another storm. b) Another EARTHQUAKE. c) Some goddamned wind. d) Passing texting/drunk/mascara-applying drivers and/or bicyclists. e) Birds.... Read more →

Oh Hey What Up?

The beach. The beach is what up. Just FYI. Point the first: My children -- my lousy, wretched, terrible children -- have insisted on waking up at 6:30 am every morning of this mini-vacation, and for that I am ready to...uh...I don't even know what I'm ready to do to them, I'M TOO TIRED FOR RETRIBUTION. Point the second: Shovels. Shovels as big as toddlers. Madness! Point the third: We're smuggling about half the beach home in our children's thigh rolls and underwear pockets. Don't tell anyone. Point the fourth: We're leaving today, so I better get back out there with my big-ass shovel. Read more →

22 Hours in Philly

So. Yeah. That was fun. Those of you on the Twitthing already know, and probably feel like you know too much. But for everybody else: I got sick. Like, really terribly embarrassingly, what-do-you-MEAN-I-have-to-ride-in-an-elevator-to-get-to-a-bathroom sick. (Over the weekend, Ezra had one of those mysterious out-of-nowhere barfing incidents, where he just puked up an entire meal and then went on with his life just fine. Flash to 72 hours or so later, and INCUBATION COMPLETE! FULL ADULT-SIZED VIRUS MORPH ACHIEVED! NOW IS THE TIME TO DIE!) So. Yeah. I woke up yesterday feeling...not great, but not terrible. A little off. I blamed a shitty night of sleep, since I woke up multiple times convinced that I'd overslept and missed my 8:30 am presentation, only to look at the clock and see that, no, it's 3:15 am, jackass, simmer down. I tried to eat a bagel and just...couldn't. I blamed this on the fact that it just wasn't a very good bagel, ignoring even more signs that my body was getting ready to revolt. (I would make a terrible protagonist in a Dan Brown novel, don't you think?) The rest of the morning was a blur -- the first session went okay, even... Read more →

Destination NotNewark

So...I'm leaving in just a couple hours on an honest-to-God business trip, with a suitcase and everything, like a fancy business woman, who regularly gets asked to speak at social media conferences. Social media! Have you heard about this shit yet? I think it might turn into something one of these days. The Hulk, probably, or that thing from Cloverfield. But no lie, I'm going to be at's Social Media Summit in Philly, co-paneling sessions about...blogs. And Facebook. Mostly on a pretty basic level, which, THANK GOODNESS, because otherwise I will run out of web-related expertise in the first 10 minutes. Still, though. I should probably write down some notes, or at least make sure Facebook hasn't reset my password or something. "And this is the login screen! All you do is...wait, fuck, hang on." The funny thing is that public speaking doesn't phase me in the slightest. Speaking in front of a room full of people, riffing about topics that I may have just a smidge more than a passing knowledge of? Cake! Pie! Bring it! Meanwhile: TRAVEL. OMFG. WE ARE ALL GOING TO DIE. So I am currently channeling all my copious amounts on anxiety onto an... Read more →