My best story from the conference, other than hanging out with old friends and meeting new ones and also MOJITOS, occurred about three hours prior to Sparklecorn. And like ALL of my best stories, this one predictably involves me going to pieces over something trivial. Basically, CAPS LOCKing all over the place, but live and in real time. I was trying to figure out how to get five rather large boxes from the package room at the hotel over to the party location next door. These five boxes contained about 4,000 multi-colored glow necklaces and bracelets, which are a Sparklecorn tradition, as everybody uses them for everything from jewelry to belts to tiaras to elaborate full-on glow-in-the-dark costumes. I'd shipped them to myself at the hotel, not realizing that BlogHer had outgrown its quaint days of underground hotel conference rooms and was now taking over gigantic convention centers, because blogging, apparently, is quite a thing with the kids these days. And it turned out that the hundred yards or so of sidewalk between the two locations were guarded by an old gray wizard screaming YOU SHALL NOT PASS to anyone working at the hotel, because of unions and balrogs and... Read more →

This photo is for my sister, who is currently pacing a hospital waiting room while her daughter, my niece, undergoes emergency gallbladder surgery. You know, for kicks. Yeah. It's kind of an inside joke. Which would ideally involve each and every one of those cups filled with shots of contraband Pinot Grigio. On Christmas morning. While huddled in the guest room under the guise of last-minute present wrapping. Which may or may not have actually happened. Anyway. Between that and another week full of chemo treatments and bargain-basement platelet counts, I'm in a giddy sort of limbo where I don't feel particularly funny, nor do I feel capable of being all maudlin and introspective. I'm just sort of spent. Maybe I just need a drink. Or a hug. Or some kind of chocolate-y boozy drink that could be the equivalent of a hug. Come to think of it, those mini-sized Dixie cups seem like the perfect serving size for a pregnant woman to safely consume alcohol in moderation. Plus look! At the packaging! The cups have ARMS. I feel comforted already. Meanwhile... 1) I am recapping Top Chef All-Stars this season at Mamapop. Unfortunately, several of my personal Top Chef... Read more →

I woke up yesterday morning completely incensed at John Cougar Mellencamp. That asshole had the nerve to get MAD at me after I called him "John Cougar Mellencamp" in my dream, because I simply forgot that he dropped the "Cougar" part, like who can keep it all straight all the time, and even after I apologized he yanked my wine glass out of my hand and and said "this is going to kill you one day, young lady" and then I woke up and was like, don't you judge me, John Cougar Mellencamp. For HOURS. Possibly even still now, a little bit. God. He was just so fucking CONDESCENDING about it. Anyway, after I woke up and had a whole imaginary defensive conversation about my imaginary intervention with an imaginary John Cougar Mellencamp, I had to start frantically cleaning the house for our Labor Day party, to which I had invited the local Mamapop contingent -- Sarah, Laurie, Jodi, Tracey, Charlie -- to come over and start drinking before noon. The party was a great success, if I do say so myself, judging by the two (2) recycling bins we done filled up with wine and beer bottles (STOP JUDGING... Read more →

It's been brought to my attention that my last couple posts have made a somewhat extraordinary number of you cry. At work, or other embarrassing places/occasions to be caught crying. Obviously, I assume MOST of you are exaggerating for the sake of affect (takes one to KNOW ONE, if you know what I mean), but I guess I do need to take some of you at your word and apologize for all the virtual sucker-punches, and promise that there will be nothing of the sort in today's entry. (BAM! SUNRISE SUNSET! MAGIC BABIES! PERSONAL GROWTH AND SHIT! GRAINY iPHONE PICTURES BECAUSE MY REAL CAMERA IS BUSTED! BAM BAM BAM!) (What? No good? Not doing anything for ya? Oh well.) Let's see if I can inspire some different emotions today. First up... ANGER I finally typed "Mockingjay" into Google this morning to figure out what the freaking frack everybody was talking about on Twitter yesterday, and what exactly we're giving away on Mamapop today. Spoiler alert! It's a book! Now here is my dilemma: 1) Take all of you at your word that it's omg!thebestthing!ever! and start the series at the beginning, looking for all the world like a shameless fad-follower... Read more →

It turns out, if I deliberately decide to stay off the Internet* for an entire day, that I am downright PRODUCTIVE. Possibly even bordering on COMPETENT. The first order of business yesterday was a playdate, and don't you love that while I would never betray the sacred trust of What Happens on a Playdate, Stays on a Playdate and actually TELL you about the playdate, I still feel compelled to tell you that yes, I totally fucking had a playdate, motherfuckers. I have friends and am in demand for social gatherings with other human beings. WHAT UP. PLAYDATE. (She's probably reading this, by the way, so I will thank all of y'all to make me sound awesome in the comment section and not say anything about that time at the place with the thing. You know what I'm talking about.) So anyway, I decided to clean the house before the playdate. (Playdate! Playdaaaate!) And I realize this is completely 1) lame, and probably 2) cheating, because there's usually some unspoken arrangement between women that we're only supposed to express shame over the messy state of our homes and one-up each other regarding our failures. HOSTESS: I am sorry the house... Read more →

On Friday night, I went to a party. A non-kid-birthday, grown-up-fancy party! And I, of course, proceeded to act like a toddler the entire time. Part the First: I decide to wear my new shoes. I attempt to drive a stick shift in my new shoes. Six blocks and three stall-outs later, I kick them off and drive barefoot instead. Part the Second: I arrive early because I am a blogger of considerable influence who is also Internet-Friends with one of the VIP guests, Laura Bennett of Project Runway/Daily Beast/Your Local Bookstore . I bump into the person who invited me in the first place, give her an awkward hug of thanks...and accidently stomp on her bare feet with -- oh my God -- those stupid fucking shoes. Part the Third: I attempt to give Laura directions to the event via text message, belatedly realizing that my phone auto-corrected my mistyping of "Elm Street" into "Elmo Street." Part the Fourth: There was wine. It was free. Part the Fifth: Socialite/Professional Fancy Party Person Tinsley Mortimer was another VIP. Laura and I decide to get our picture taken with her. She's busy holding an interview, but we don't let that stop... Read more →

Things Nobody Tells You: Four-Year-Old Edition

1) Learning to properly blow one's own nose is, in fact, a highly advanced skill. If you are able to blow your own nose, congratulations! You've accomplished something with your life after all. 2) Even AFTER one has learned and is perfectly capable of blowing one's own nose, it may take even longer before one has figured out that one SHOULD blow one's own nose, rather than sniff sniff snort snorting snot up through one's nasal cavities ALL THE LIVE-LONG DAY. 3) When one DOES opt to sniff sniff snort snort all the cotton-picking live-long mother-loving day and night, despite MUCH PLEADING AND PROMPTING from one's loving, concerned mother, one might eventually get sick to one's stomach and vomit. 4) A lot. A surprising, alarming lot. 5) Usually at 4 am, or so. 6) Maybe again at 5 am, on the sheets that you just changed, or in the wastebasket. 7) Incidentally, wicker wastebaskets are a poor, poor choice for a child's room. 8) Also, if you type the word "wastebasket" enough times it stops looking like a real word. Like you're referring to tissues as "noseblankets" or "snotwrappers" or something. 9) Anyway. 10) There will also be zero fever... Read more →

Oh, come on. You knew I was gonna do it. So last night I made the infamous spinach-cheese souffle. In the microwave. MICROWAVED SOUFFLE. BECAUSE WHY NOT. Would you like to see how it turned out? In painstakingly over-documented, un-retouched, high-res detail? Yes? Then keep on clicking, baby. The first thing to do, in the interest of historical accuracy, was to remove our fancy rotating turntable. I wanted the full, real experience of two-minute cooking intervals and constant 1/4-turning. This is like the culinary equivalent of visiting Historical Williamsburg. The recipe explicitly calls for chopped frozen spinach, just so the very first step could involve defrosting the spinach. I mean, sure. You could buy and chop fresh spinach, but where's the microwaving fun in that? You don't even get to hit any buttons! While the book says to microwave the spinach in its package, Jason insisted that I heed modern advancements and follow the directions on the bag, which call for a separate, covered container. Boo! This throws the validity of the entire experiment into question! However, by this point I will say that I already learned something. My microwave does indeed have a special "defrost" setting* that helpfully beeps... Read more →

In Which Wii Bowling Ruins My Life

Or, What Happens When You Let Your Wii Bowling Pro Status Go To Your Head Or, Not To Be Overly DRAMATIC, Or Anything Scene, Bowling Alley, Saturday Night Amy: Ew. Bowling shoes? Hasn't technology rendered community shoes obsolete yet? Jason: Wait, did you forget to wear socks? Amy: *pause* Amy: Yes. Jason. EW. Amy: Also, none of these balls have sparkly stars on them. Jason: And? Amy: So how will anybody know how awesome I am? That I am their better? They should put my face on a blimp, at least. Game One Amy: *bowls* Ball: *gutters* Amy: *bowls* Ball: *gutters* Amy: *makes lighthearted jokes at her expense, trying to mask how DEEPLY and GENUINELY rattled she is, OH MY GOD, she cannot LOSE AT THINGS, gaaaaaaah* Ball: *gutters* FINAL SCORE: 34 Game Two Two couples arrive, including one guy who is already slurring his words at the top of his lungs, and are assigned to the lane next to us. The one we share tables and a score machine with. I am immediately thrown even further of my game by the presence of other actual human beings who are not part of my Mii gallery and shockingly, do not... Read more →

DAY THREE, SATURDAY Part One: They Vacuum Carpets, Don't They? The baby's breakfast consisted of a couple handfuls of swag bag fruit puffs tossed on the floor of the hotel room. Part Two: It Takes A Village I once again attempted to attend an actual panel at the actual conference that I had paid actual money for -- this time with the Vaginally Challenged Men of Blogher. When I walked in, Ezra was asleep, but oh, no, that did not last very long at all. Luckily, there were plenty of women around us willing to offer us various forms of baby-amusement: toys from their swag bags, handfuls of Quaker cereal, their noses. The first time he squawked an emphatic "EEEEEEEHHHHHHHHAAAAA," it was funny, and all the faces that spun around to stare at us were sympathetic and amused. By the third or fourth time, not so much, and when I caught a definite glare of "ENTITLED MOMMYBLOGGER" from a few rows up, we got up and left. Which was a shame, because it was a good panel, except that apparently NO ONE on that panel was sleeping with ANYONE in the audience, except for like, THEIR WIFE, or whatever. Booooring!... Read more →