Monday, October 29, 2012

Hunter's Moon

It's a full moon. Strange things happen on full moons. Or so they say. There is a scientific theory called the Lunar Effect that tries to explain why this may be the cause of deviant (for lack of a better word) behavior from humans at certain times in the moon's cycle. It's unexplainable.
Not to be confused with the "Transylvanian Effect," (men turning to werewolves, witches incantations holding increased stamina, or other mythological bullshit theories) the Lunar Effect holds some validity.

The moon has power.

Enough to evoke the tides of the great oceans.

So the theory goes, if the moon can monopolize force in a body of water that grand, then it should also have at least a little influence on human beings that are predominantly made up of water.

After tonight, I agree with that theory.

Oh, it's been a night,
But anyway...

The thing about tonight's moon is that it's a hunter's moon. Basically the same as a harvest moon, but since the majority of harvesting was done by this point in the year, the extra light from the moon was used for hunting.


It's Monday: a day of the week that was actually named after my beloved luna. Monday ~ "Moon Day" in Old English.

My point: today was magnetically swayed.

Regardless, I thought it was a fine day to post a craft I did with Kalynn earlier this Summer when we were learning about how the moon worked. Turns out, if you mix glue and shaving cream, you get this foamy-creamy-blueish-paste stuff that turns hard when it dries. Perfect for moon construction.

So we had to check it out.

We ended up making ourselves a little luntastic mural. The moon is clearly visible, however the rest can be left to interpretation.

 Let me explain.

I made a connect-the-dots constellation of Kalynn's Capricorn sign in the upper left side of the paper. She did a great job.
In the upper right side of the paper, I showed her how to draw a star. In the bottom left is where she tried to copy. There may be room for improvement, but the effort was definitely there. So... she gets an "A" for effort!

We also learned the cycle of the moon from some Oreo cookies and a sun made from candycorn. I was trying to explain what direction the rays come from and what effects it has on our visible illumination. Turns out, this is extremely hard to comprehend for a 2-year-old. But whatever, the cookies were delicious no matter what info was retained in the end.

So, whatever you did or said today that may or may not have been totally ridiculously unexplainable, blame it on the Monday Full Moon. Because scientifically speaking, it really wasn't your fault...

"Sorry, I was just 'moon stupid' today..." - A scientific term. (probably)

Just make sure you make it right tomorrow.

.Post Script:

Stay safe all you East-Coasters! You're in my thoughts! Frankenstorm is no exception from being moon stupid. Maybe tomorrow he'll call and apologize?

Other posts you may be interested in:
A La Luna Ida Y Vuelta
Harvest Moon
Beaver Moon

Moonlight Whoopee Cushion Sonata

Moonlight Whoopee Cushion Sonata - By Tom Robbins


The witch-girl who lives by the bend in the river is said to keep a fart in a bottle.

It's a poisonous fart, green as cabbage, loud as a shotgun; and after moonset or before moonrise, her hut is illuminated by its pale mephitic glow. For a time, passersby thought she had television.

Of course, no antenna sprouts from her thatched roof, no satellite dish dwarfs her woodpile, and can you imagine the cable company stringing wires across the marsh and through the forest so that a witch-girl could watch the Occult Channel? Anyway, how would she pay for it? With the contents of her mushroom basket, the black candles she makes from hornet fat, her belladonna wine? With that cello she saws with a human bone?

It's conceivable that she could pay for it with her body: her body's been admired by many a fisherman who's chanced upon her wading the rapids in loonskin drawers. But no man's ever bought her body, and only one has had the courage to take it for free.

That fellow's gone away now. It's said he fled back to South America and left her in the lurch. Oh, but she still has a hold on him, you can bet on that. Our witch-girl's got a definite hook in that fly-by-night romeo. She's woven his mustache hairs into a tiny noose. She's got his careless fart in a bottle by the stove.


Turn a mountain upside down, you have a woman. Turn a woman upside down, you have a valley. Turn a valley upside down, you get folk music.

In the old days, the men in our village played trombone. Some better than others, obviously, but most of the men could play. Only males, sad to say. The women danced. It was the local custom. The practice has all but died out, though to this day, grizzled geezers are known to hide trombones under their beds at the nursing home. It's strictly forbidden, but late on summer nights, you can sometimes hear nostalgic if short-winded trombone riffs drifting out of the third story windows, see silhouettes of old women on the second floor, dancing on swollen feet in fuzzy slippers or spinning in rhythmic circles in their wheelchairs.

As noted, however, our musical traditions have virtually vanished. Nowadays, people get their music from compact discs or FM radio. Who has time anymore to learn an instrument? Only the witch-girl by the bend in the river, sawing her cello with a human tibia, producing sounds like Stephen King's nervous system caught in a mousetrap.

When milk sours before it leaves the udder or grain starts to stink in the fields; when workers go out on strike at the sauerkraut factory, the missile base, or the new microchip plant down the road; when basements flood, lusty young wives get bedtime migraines, dogs wake up howling in the middle of the night, or the interference on TV is like a fight in hot grease between corn flakes and a speedboat, people around here will say, "The witch-girl's playing her cello again."

Turn folk music upside down, you get mythology. Turn mythology upside down, you get history. Turn history upside down, you get religion, journalism, hysteria, and indecision.


The setting sun turned the river into a little red schoolhouse. Thus motivated, the frogs got to work conjugating their verbs. The witch-girl handled the arithmetic.

The divided a woodpecker by the square root of a telephone pole.

Multiplied the light in a fox's eyes by the number of umlauts on a Häagen-Daz bar.

Added a kingfisher's nest to the Gross National Product.

Calculated the ratio of duende to pathos in the death song of a lamp-singed moth.

Subtracted a mallow from a marsh, an ant from an anthem, a buddha from a peach can shot full of holes.


A white plastic bucket in a snowy field. A jackknife of geese scratching God's dark name in the sky. A wind that throbs but is silent. Candy wrappers silent against fence wire. Stags silent under their fright-wig menorahs. Bees silent in their science-fiction wax. A silent fiddle bow of blue smoke bobbing in the crooked chimney atop the witch-girl's shack.

It is on a cold, quiet Sunday afternoon past Christmas that the television crew arrives in our village. By suppertime, everybody but the hard cases at the nursing home knows it's in town. At the Chamber of Commerce breakfast Monday morning, hastily arranged to introduce the videopersons to the citizenry, the banquet room is overflowing. Understandably, we villagers assume the view is here to film the new industries of which we are rightly proud. The director is diplomatic when he explains that missile bases and microchip plants are a dime a dozen.

"We are making a documentary on flatus," the director explains. The audience is spellbound.

"A normal human being expels flatus an average of fourteen times per day," he goes on to say. There is a general muttering. Few would have thought the figure that high.

"We are speaking of all human beings, from babies in diapers to lawyers in three-piece suits. The mechanic billows the seat of his greasy coveralls, the glamorous movie actress poots through silk- and blames it on the maid or the Irish wolfhound. 'Naughty dog!'

"You people can do your math. That's eighty-four billion expulsions of flatus daily, worldwide, year after year. And that's just humans. Animals break wind, as well, so that wolfhound is not above suspicion. Anyway. We can explain reasonably well what flatus is: a gas composed primarily of hydrogen sulfide and varying amounts of methane. And whence it comes: generated i the alimentary canal by bacterial food waste, and vented through the anus. But where does it end up?"

Villagers look at one another, shake their heads. 

"I won't trouble you today with environmental considerations, though I'm certain you can conceive of an upper atmospheric flatus layer, eating away at the ozone. This will be covered in our film. What I want to share with you is the difficulties we have encountered in trying to photograph the elusive trouser ghost, a genie as invisible as it is mischievous."

The director (a handsome man who wears a denim jacket and smokes a pipe) explains that attempts at spectrographic photography, while scientifically interesting, failed to produce an image with enough definition or optic impact to hold the attention of a fake. He goes on to explain how he and his staff fed a live model on popcorn, beer, and navy beans, then lowered her buttocks into a vat of syrup. Those of us who have just eaten pancakes for breakfast smile uneasily. "We got some marvelous bubbles," the director says, "but a gas bubble per se is not a fart.

"On Saturday, we heard from a reliable source that a resident of this community, or someone who lives nearby, has succeeded in actually netting a rectal comet and maintaining it intact. We were skeptical naturally, and on deadline, but also excited  and a trifle desperate, so we impulsively dropped everything and traveled here at once. Now we are asking for your help. Does this person- and this preserved effluvium- exist? We were told only that the captor in question is some rich girl..."

"Witch-girl!" the audience cries out as one. Then, in gleeful unison- "Witch-girl" -they sing it out again.


As for what happens next, the village is of two minds. The village, in fact, has split into a pair of warring camps. We have come to refer to the opposing factions as "Channel A" and "Channel B." Here are their respective versions.

Channel A

A week passes. The television crew fails to return from the river. Suspecting foul play, the sheriff and his deputies tramp through the leafless forest and across the frozen bogs.

The witch-girl has disappeared. So have the director and his camerawoman. The audio technician is found sitting on a stump, a depraved glaze coating his eyes. When asked about the whereabouts of the others, the soundman mumbles, "The hole in the cheese." Over and over, "Hole in cheese. Hole in cheese." Until they take him away to a sanatorium. (Some joker at the feed store said they hoped it was a Swiss sanatorium.)

Eight months later, on Cooked Angle Island, a prospector stumbles across three skeletons, strangely intertwined. Inside the skull of each of them, rattling like a translucent jade acorn, is a perfectly crystallized fart.

Channel B

The witch-girl us a big hit on PBS. Millions see her play the cello beside a bonfire, an owl perched on her shoulder. This has nothing to do with the subject of flatulence, but the director is obviously in her thrall.

She has a second fart-bottle on her nightstand now.

And throughout our township, television reception has significantly improved.


Perhaps it should be noted that sometime during this period on an Argentine Independence Day, a notorious playboy fell to his death from one of the numerous gilded balconies of his Buenos Aires apartment. According to his mistress of the moment, he lost his balance while trying to capture with a gaucho hat a particularly volatile green spark that had escaped from a fireworks display in the plaza. "Es mio!" he cried as he went over the side. It's mine.

Sunday, October 28, 2012


The second it started getting cold outside was the same second my sweet tooth kicked in. Maybe it's that any excuse I have to bake a themed anything, I'll take. Especially Halloween.

I've made some orange and black sprinkled cake pops: (recipe here)

Ghost cake pops: (recipe here)

about a million Rice Krispie Treats:

owl cuppy cakes: (use Oreos and M&M's for the eyes)

And of course you can't forget the adult desserts like this pumpkin pie martini:
(2 parts pumpkin liquor, 1 part Smirnoff Whipped Cream vodka, splash of milk, pinch of pumpkin pie seasoning)

or this Carmel Apple Martini:
(equal parts Smirnoff Kissed caramel vodka, red apple pucker and a spash of apple juice)

and of course you can't do Halloween without at least one spiked apple cider:
(3 parts fresh apple cider, 1 part Meyers dark rum, 1/2 part cinnamon schnapps)

Ah, the gym is about to be seeing a lot more of me...


Saturday, October 27, 2012

Let It Snow

So I walked out of work on Wednesday night to this:

I know to normal Coloradans this isn't anything out of the ordinary, but to me, this is something I've been dreaming about since we made the decision to move. The thought of having actual seasons, of Fall feeling like Fall and Winter feeling like Winter, was enough to warm my heart. So when we woke up the next morning and looked out our windows to our first real snow, we were all abnormally excited.

Kalynn's never seen snow. She saw very short lived flurries a few weeks ago and kept asking what the "funny rain" was, but she's never been able to hold it, to play with it, or make a snowball. She's seen it on television plenty of times, but never in real life. So to be able to see snow again for the very first time through her eyes was pretty priceless.

She even constructed her very first snowman (and named him Spongebob)

I was in charge of the button nose and 2 eyes made out of coal

Kalynn gave him some arms

There's never going to be another first snowman. This is a day I will remember in my mind every winter to come. And it couldn't have been any more perfect.


Maybe if it was a little warmer...

and I had a hot toddie...


Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Oops! I Craft My Pants

Last week Kalynn saw her first snow. It didn't stick, but it came down pretty hard for a little bit. So we ran outside and played for a few minutes until we got too cold and then came inside to find something warm to do. 

We really had no choice but to throw ourselves head first into a crafting whirlwind for about 4 days. 

These are some of my favs:

After we went to the pumpkin patch last weekend, we came home with this gorgeous little pumpkin and needed something to do with it. Kalynn is clearly too little to be carving anything, but I didn't want her to miss out on the gutting and getting dirty part, so I needed to come up with some sort of alternative.

She still got to get messy and scoop out all of the guts and seeds.

After the seeds were washed, we let them dry and a few hours later we glued them on some new refrigerator art.

Halloween craft idea for toddlers and kids: glue pumpkin seeds on a construction paper pumpkin

Construction paper and glue goes a long way in this house.

Halloween craft idea for toddlers and kids: glue pumpkin seeds on a construction paper pumpkin

We also watched It's The Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown, and decided we needed a Jack-O-Lantern. Since our pumpkin has already molded (even though we carved it only a few short days ago), I grabbed the next best thing. Again, construction paper and Elmers. The only instructions I gave her were to make 2 eyes, a nose, and a mouth.
Halloween craft idea for toddlers and kids: construction paper and paper plate jack-o-lantern

It's pretty much the best looking Jack-O-Lantern I've ever seen in my life. For whatever reason, it totally reminds me of Bill Murray...

Halloween craft idea for toddlers and kids: construction paper and paper plate jack-o-lantern

Most holidays, I get obsessed with hand and feet art. For me, it's a reminder which I can pull out and gush over her tiny little digits from the year prior. This year we made a ghost. (Michael's Arts and Crafts stores has all of their canvas on sale this week)

Halloween craft idea for toddlers and kids: canvas foot print ghost "Trick or Treat, Smell My Feet"

We've also painted some ghosties from the fallen maple tree leaves in front of our house.

Halloween craft idea for toddlers and kids: paint ghosts out of fallen maple leaves

So now I'm pretty much out of ideas and anyone that knows me knows I need to get in as much Halloweeny type stuff as possible in the next 11 days. 

So if anyone has any ideas...

Let us know!

Monday, October 15, 2012

Cutest Kid In The Patch!

I'm in love with traditions.

One of my favorites is hitting up the pumpkin patch. I did it as a kid, as a teenager, as a twenty-something, and continue to go now with my own family. There is something familiar about corn mazes, hay rides and the smell of fall that I have a longing for when this time of year rolls around.

Kalynn's first trip was just a few short months before she started walking in 2010 to Tanaka Farms in Irvine, California. I had been there plenty of times prior, but saw it from a completely different point of view with a crawling lady baby by my side.

Pumpkin Patch at Tanaka Farms, Irvine California

Pumpkin Patch at Tanaka Farms, Irvine California

Pumpkin Patch at Tanaka Farms, Irvine California

Pumpkin Patch at Tanaka Farms, Irvine California

We went back to the same patch last year but Kalynn and I were both sick.
Pumpkin Patch at Tanaka Farms, Irvine California

Pumpkin Patch at Tanaka Farms, Irvine California

So we tried another at the Irvine Park Railroad the following week when we felt a little better.
Pumpkin Patch Irvine Park Railroad, Irvine California

Pumpkin Patch Irvine Park Railroad, Irvine California

This year, we visited the Northern Colorado Corn Maze with a breathtaking view of the Rockies as a backdrop to an already gorgeous farm.
Northern Colorado Corn Maze, Fort Collins - Timnath Colorado

Jason was in New York this week, so we braved the corn maze by ourselves and made it out alive.

Northern Colorado Corn Maze, Fort Collins - Timnath Colorado

Northern Colorado Corn Maze, Fort Collins - Timnath Colorado

There was even a bouncy house!

Here she is right in the middle of a jump and a giggle:

Northern Colorado Corn Maze, Fort Collins - Timnath Colorado

Northern Colorado Corn Maze, Fort Collins - Timnath Colorado

You just can't beat this view!

Next up, it's time to carve!

More on that the next post...