My Life is a Musical

cookiemonster.jpg

My wife tells me our daughter is now 19 months, but I still tell everybody she’s a year and a half. It’s easier for people to figure out and is close enough. Anyhow, she is pretty advanced for her age as far as language is concerned. People are amazed all the time how articulate she is. Yes, I’m bragging. Sorry!

She is also a musical little girl, and we always say she has a song in her heart. In fact, half the time I feel like I’m living in a musical. She is constantly singing songs, often with my wife’s name, my name, or Odie’s name (from the Garfield comic strip) sprinkled into the lyrics. For example, Jingle Bells has often been sung as “Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle all the Dadda”. Too cute.

The funniest thing she has been doing is singing the song “Oh where, Oh where has my little dog gone” whenever she has misplaced something, though she inserts the item she is looking for into the lyrics. If she is looking for her juice she’ll just sing “Oh where, Oh where has my juice gone” to herself until she either finds it or we get the hint and find it for her.

It’s really not bad, living in a musical though. It surely makes things interesting and cuter. Everything isn’t perfectly cute, however. I will save for another time the tales of rejection she has for dolls. This one knows what she likes at a year and a half (sorry, 19 months) already.

We’re Back

Well, I’m finally home from visiting everyone for Christmas. We departed on the 24th and just got home this evening (the 29th). It was tiring, but nice to see everyone. Thanks to everyone for the comments here. I will respond soon. I have been away from the computer for five days, which doesn’t seem like a long time until you do it.

All of my family was generous with gifts and I’m happy to say I received a bunch of books, which should keep me busy for a while. I got The Wee Free Men and Thud! by Terry Pratchett and Widdershins by Charles De Lint. I also received Diaries 1969-1979: The Python Years by Michael Palin of Monty Python.

The big gift I received was the Sony Reader (an e-Book reader). I love the feel of printed books and will probably never completely switch to electronic books. I wanted the Reader more for the free books out there such as the ones on Project Guterberg that are available as free downloads. I will write more about it when I have had some time with it.

My wife bought me the DVD to the movie Stardust and I can’t wait to watch that. It was such a good movie. I’m so glad she bought it for me.

The most fun was seeing my daughter with her presents.  We did the presents between my wife, my daughter, and I just this evening when we got home.

Anyhow, I’m back now, Christmas was great, and now I have to catch up with reading everything you all have written!

Our Christmas Tree

Here is a picture of our Christmas tree. I post this because we finally had a chance to download our pictures from our camera (I still owe you a post from Victorian Christmas, I got some beautiful pictures there). This isn’t the best picture, but it’s the best one we got. Our decorations could best be described as either eclectic or country. Most of them were crafts made by my Grandma or my Mom. Also, don’t be alarmed by Garfield hanging upside down from the tree in the lower right hand corner. My daughter hung him that way. Also, we have a nicer tree skirt, but it didn’t make it down from the attic this year.

ourchristmastree.jpg

Frosty the Snowman

I found this video on YouTube yesterday and had to share it here. It is the original Black and White Frosty the Snowman. I showed it to my daughter and we have watched it roughly 4 million times since. I’m surprised she likes the black and white, but she does. She particularly likes the part where they say “weeee!”.

Enjoy!

Merry Christmas

I just wanted to take a moment to wish you all a Merry Christmas and thank you all for stopping by here to read my words and more importantly to write some of your own. This little blog here really does thrive on comments, and it means a great deal to me that you all continue to add your thought on my musings.

Today is my last day at work until January 2nd. That is one of the perks of working for a University. I may not make as much money as I would in industry and I don’t get any monetary “Christmas bonus”, but at least I get a nice Christmas Break.

I will be spending most of my break visiting family, which translated means traveling. We are spending a night at my parent’s house, a couple nights at my wife’s Dad’s house, and a night at my Grandma’s house (the one that passed away recently, this may be our last time in that house) to visit that side of the family.

We should be home the 28th or 29th. My wife is running in a 5K race on the 31st so we definitely have to be home by then. I hope to have at least a couple “quiet” days at home after this.

I plan on writing a bunch of posts and scheduling them post throughout next week. You probably won’t notice a big difference here other than I may not reply to your comments right away. Please continue to post them, though. I’ll respond when I return.

I leave you with a funny YouTube video about Pachelber’s Canon and it’s pervasiveness in music of the past and today (trust me, it’s funnier than my lame description).

The Fairy Tales of J.K. Rowling

talesofbeedlethebard.jpg

For those who are interested, I did not pass out at my hockey game last night. In fact, I felt pretty good. I guess my body was recovered enough from giving blood that it wasn’t a problem. Maybe all the Christmas cookies and goodies I consumed during work helped!

Remember that new story last week about that book, J.K. Rowling’s The Tales of Beedle the Bar, of which only seven copies were made? The one that was bought at auction for $4 million with the proceeds going to charity? Well, the secret buyer turned out to be Amazon.com and they have posted some pictures and excerpts from the book on the web. A warning to all of you book lovers out there: You may drool.

The book is handwritten, beautifully bound, and even contains drawings by the author.  Check out the pictures.  They are wonderful.  There are also excerpts from the text.

My hope is that Ms. Rowling someday decides to release these tales either in book form or electronically.  We’ll see if that ever happens.  In the meantime, we can look at the pictures and wonder what is inside.

Bleeding – At Least I’m Good At Something

redcross2.jpg

I did something good yesterday, something I seem to be pretty good at: I bled. Actually, I donated blood, but saying “I bled” sounds cooler. I usually give blood every time I’m eligible, not because I’m such a great person, but more because it’s easy for me and it doesn’t hurt me at all. I guess I also do it for the selfish reason that it feels good to know I’m helping people.

After I was finished giving blood, they gave me a free long sleeve T-Shirt. It’s actually a pretty nice shirt. Pretty soon my entire wardrobe is going to consist of free Red Cross T-Shirts. Also, they gave us a chance to win an iPhone, if we register at the Red Cross web site. The funny thing is I registered on the site and it told me I have given blood 38 times (I’m not bragging, but I am proud). See, us Americans aren’t all bad 🙂

The only bad thing is that I have an ice hockey game to play tonight and since I gave blood yesterday, I doubt I’ll have my full energy level for the game. It’s my last game for a few weeks, though, so I will try to make the most of it. As long as I don’t pass out on the ice, I’ll be OK.

On an unrelated note, I have been trying to draw the steampunk animal for that story I mentioned the other day. I’m not much of an artist, but I’m going to give it a try. I need to see my idea on paper before I can describe it with words. Does this make sense?

The Clockwork Jungle Book – Steampunk Writing Opportunity

I came across a pretty interesting writing opportunity yesterday and thought I would share it here. Shimmer Magazine, a critically acclaimed online speculative fiction magazine which some of you might remember me mentioning when they had their Pirate themed issue, is asking for submissions for another themed issue. The issue is to be titled The Clockwork Jungle Book and in their words “We’re looking to explore the steampunk sub-genre through a series of short, succinct fables, preferably using a variety of animals to give the issue a particular feel and theme.” The deadline for submissions is Feb. 29th, 2008 and the maximum word count is 3,500 words. Accepted stories will be paid at one cent per word. Here is a link to their guidelines.

For those of you not sure what Steampunk is, here is a good description Shimmer posted on their site:

Steampunk is a sub-genre of speculative fiction in dialogue with the Victorian period and Victoriana (though not exclusively), and much of its energy, fun and sense-of-wonder stems from the juxtaposition of Victorian values and a Victorian world-view with advancements in technology that have occurred ahead of their time (i.e. the computer age has developed concurrently with the industrial age). Much of this technology will in fact be “retro-technology”; a device that has the same use or output as its modern counterpart (or indeed science-fictional counterpart) but will be built using the materials and aesthetics of the time.

An excellent blog on all things Steampunk is Brass Goggles.

I already have a pretty solid story idea and am really going to try to submit something this time.  As always, I’ll probably get all excited, write a few hundred words, and then move on to the next exciting thing. I hope not, though.