Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Countdown to Halloween continues.

In preparation for all the pictures I intend to take tomorrow, I spent a few minutes this afternoon playing around with Monkey Sr.'s new camera. I don't know the specs, I'm not a techie techie. It's a something, something. He got it at Costco. It's black. I'm not quite sure how it works. But it has the potential to take sharper pictures than the old one I've been using.

I just have to figure it out.

Today's photo-op? The vomit van, post pre-school pick up. Both monkeys are out of their car seats and goofing around with the buttons while we are parked in the driveway. Despite the bright natural light available at 11:30 in the morning, the picture has a pronounced blue tone. I call it the icy effect. Kind of interesting in a Jack Frost sort of way. I have no idea how to correct this. Flash? I thought it was on auto. God, I hate techie nonsense. It took me forever to learn the old camera.

I messed about with some buttons and got this. With these two at the wheel, we need to re-examine the limitations on our insurance policy. Check out Monkey's hair. I've been dropping subtle suggestions that we may need to visit the hair salon soon. In my own mind, I think I'm being subtle, but clearly not. Whatever I say sends the kid into a screaming fit of "No cut cut! No hair salon! No trim!" This kid is actually listening to me when I talk.

Miss Mina's hair is not much better. She doesn't care. I kind of respect that.

They both have sort of the same hair thing going on. It's interesting. People frequently comment on Jordan's very thick head of hair. At first, I just assumed he was blessed with this enormous bush of hair courtesy of his daily medication - cyclosporine. One of its side effects is extra hair. All over his body.

But then we had Mina. And she's a bit of a hairy beasty too...without the meds. Guess I can't use them as the excuse.

Once the monkeys had their fill of the van, they moved on to the herb garden. I'm proud of my fledgling herb garden. It's really more of an herbal forest at this point. A few tiny basil, oregano and parsley plants decided to go forth and multiply!! In a big way. Overall, my first year gardening was fun. It was great having fresh herbs every day for recipes. And definitely more cost-effective. I'm going to go out on a limb and try some composting next. We have so much food wastage in our house. Even with Oscar close at hand to vacuum up the scraps with his mouth.

I was a bit confused by some of the cross-pollinating going on among the herbs though. Planted so closely side to side, the basil and parsley did some unauthorized mingling. There are some strange hybrids mixed among the foliage that are unidentifiable.

But added Bonus of garden - it became an activity for the monkeys.

"Time to pluck some parsley."

"Jordan, I need your help with dinner. First, we have to pluck some basil."

How many toddlers do you know that can identify basil, parsley, oregano and blueberry bushes? (random planting this year.)

Downside. It's a distraction. Whenever we exit the van, instead of simply climbing up the side steps to the house, Jordan charges into the garden. "Time to pluck some parsley," he parrots back at me.

I've learned there's only so much you can do with parsley. But it does smell nice.

Back to the Halloween theme. There were a lot of last minute things that needed to be done tonight. Assembling the details on Jordan's costume, making sure Miss Mina's fit properly, buying juice boxes for the school party tomorrow, getting candy for the trick or treaters...and of course, carving the pumpkins.

Since there was no way in hell I was putting anything sharp in Monkey's hands, I modified his project by "painting" his jack o lantern. He threw himself into the task with a full body approach.

Not too bad. It could have been a lot messier. These paints clean up well.

Which is not to say he wasn't curious about the carving that J and I were doing at the table. This was Jessica's first pumpkin carving too. Carving was actually messier than than pumpkin painting with toddlers...believe it or not. Except when Miss Mina tried to eat the paint. That was lovely. I did not get a picture of that. Monkey Sr.'s camera is too new to be subjected to that kind of abuse.

For now.
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