Friday, August 31, 2012

The dog days

  • The last days of August are traditionally known as the "dog days" of summer, before fall kicks in. (It could also be interpreted literally.... my parents' neighbours have an adorable new puppy.) Reminder to self: I have been meaning to write a post on pets...
  • Thank you to Neeroc, who left a comment on my last post wondering how I've been doing and whether I was OK. Hard to believe it's been almost three weeks since my last post, one of my longest silences on this blog since it began, if not THE longest. Sorry! :p  I honestly can't wrap my head around the fact that tomorrow it will be SEPTEMBER. Erk.
  • My excuse:  I've been on vacation the last two weeks (& running around getting ready for vacation before that).  Traditional summer visit with my mom & dad, albeit later in the summer than we usually go. Our visit is winding down, and I'm feeling a little sad about leaving (not to mention the prospect of returning to work and to the daily grind -- particularly since fall is traditionally our busiest time at the office :p).
  • We have mostly been extraordinarily lazy (which is exactly what we wanted) -- done a lot of reading (book reviews to come)  and eating ; ) and been royally entertained almost every day of our visit by The Princess (Parents' Neighbours' Granddaughter).  All activity basically comes to a standstill when she arrives.
  • One reason why I haven't been blogging (or reading or commenting) as much as normal while I've been here (besides just being busy with other stuff, including The Princess) is my parents only have "high speed lite" Internet service. It's perfectly fine for them, of course -- but anyone used to normal high-speed Internet (i.e., me) would (and does) find it incredibly frustrating sometimes. And of course, when you get my mom on her netbook, me on my laptop, my sister & her boyfriend on theirs, all using up precious bandwidth... Forget trying to watch any video clip -- it stops & starts every 20 seconds. Maddening.
  • I've also discovered that while I can receive e-mails through my Outlook program, I can't SEND them. Which left me bouncing back & forth between receiving e-mails on Outlook & responding via a little-used gmail account. Also maddening.
  • It's political convention season in the U.S.  At one time, I was a huge political junkie (one of my double honours subjects at university was political science) and lapped this stuff up. I still follow current events to some extent,and I do like scanning the opinion pieces on Salon, the NY Times, etc., but I find I just don't have the stomach to watch a lot of this stuff anymore (no matter which party we're talking about -- or country -- U.S. or Canada).  
  • I would, however, like to draw your attention to two blog posts by (of all people), the parenting blogger at Huffington Post (formerly of the New York Times), Lisa Belkin, who wrote kick-ass responses to Ann and Mitt Romney's speeches and particularly their repeated fawning references to "moms." 
  • On another non-mom related note, the wonderful Mrs. Spit has put together a beautifully written Q&A about childfree living that is now available on her blog. Here's a link to the post where she introduces her list. Go have a read. And leave her a note of thanks while you're at it.
  • All around me, conversations, TV & newspaper ads, stores, etc., are revolving around the subject of "back to school."  It's unavoidable, and I can't (or perhaps, don't want to) decide how I feel about it all this year. It is almost 30 years since that phrase had any personal meaning for me.  For the past 14 years, of course, it's all been about Katie and what she would have been doing -- and, as with most Katie-related milestones, some years have been more difficult (or easier) than others/than expected.  I have a feeling this might be one of the harder years, if I let myself think about it too much. So I'm trying not to.
  • For the record, she would have been starting Grade 9 this fall. Hereabouts, that means she would be starting high school. HIGH SCHOOL, people. Gulp.
  • So, how has your summer been? (Besides too short, of course!)


  1. Hey Loribeth...sounds like you had a good relaxing summer. Just wanted to drop a line and say hello!

  2. I can't answer your question other than say "winter has been bleurgh, summer is coming!"

    I'm glad you've had some down time - time to read, enjoying The Princess, spending time with your parents. It all sounds lovely. And you know, I think an enforced break from the internet doesn't do us any harm at all. I'm going to be having one in October.

    And thanks for the links to those articles. I love Lisa Belkin now!

  3. I went to my reader tonight looking for posts from you: I have missed you and was really curious on your take on the conventions. I'm so glad you've been relaxing and having a wonderful time. But, glad you are back :)

  4. I usually love your posts, but this one is a little too political for me. The Huffington Post? Not exactly good journalism.

  5. @Mary: I'm not sure how two short bullet points related to politics (in which I say I don't have the stomach for a lot of it anymore) make an entire post "too political," but you are entitled to your opinion.

    I'll admit HuffPo is not exactly the New York Times or Wall Street Journal, but I do enjoy some of their opinion pieces, including Lisa Belkin's parenting blog (even though I am not a parent myself). From my perspective, it was nice to see a parent recognize that not everyone can relate to all the mom references these days (and not just the ones being made at political conventions).