Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Baby Crumpe at 6 months

July 19th was Baby Crumpet's 6 month birthday. woo-hoo.

We all celebrated by getting sick. First Big A, then me, then baby crumpet. The week ended with crumpet going to the doctors for her 6 months check-up and getting 3 big, fat shots. She came in at 27 inches and 17.9 pounds. This girl is going to be leggy.

She is entering a stage of rapid development. One day last week she simply learned how to use her tongue to swallow food so now her consumption has gone up & waste gone down. She has been rolling, and can occasionally sit up on her own - followed by a face plant. The sounds she make are becoming more clear. Not quite words but you can begin to hear vowles and distinct tones. She also likes to grab things. Any things. Especially the cats. Oh, and she now occasionally sleep through the night.

What can I say - days with the crumpet just gets funner & funner

Monday, July 24, 2006

San Diego Comic Con

For best coverage & photos visit Heidi's blog The Beat

Just got back from the ''Best Show on Earth'' that is officially named Comic-Con International in San Diego. Over 4 days and 125,000 people of pop-culture extravaganza. Publishers, movie studios, celebrities, gaming companies and even Fossil Watch all catered to the fans - increasingly family with kids in tow - as nervous execs back home browsed the net in search of any surfacing.

I will leave the general reporting to the media & other bloggers. For me personally it was mostly meetings (over 90 of them) so I actually saw very little of the convention. My person favorite was by far the giant snake in the plane at the New Line booth.

SDCC is always a great venue to catch up with old friends and make new ones. Ran into Regina & David, who offered to be my personal-shopper and scored various Totora tshirts & toys. Kay from Austin, who today is selling her nearly 5 foot long hair to a movie studio. Juyoun and Mijeong from Seoul who brought me chocolate filled with soju. Kenny who brought me toys from Singapore and Jen-O and news of her growing romantic ties to the ''man from Glasgow''

Best dinners - Brasilian ''meat fest'' with Pat, Ayala, Josh & Terry highlighted by the cute bartender who is half Brasilian and half Japanese. Love those hybrids considering I have one myself.

''Mole fest'' at El Agave with JY, MJ, Kenny, Jeanne, Josh & Terry while drinking very expensive tequilla chased by sangritas.

''Steak fest'' at Mortons with the folks at DC Comics

Best drinking - Club Altitude at Gaslamp Marriot with Kurt, Pat, MJ & JY. Rooftop garden and terrific people watching. All your California stereotypes are here - from fake blonde bimboes with enhanced breasts to your avg Russian mafia princess with 8-inch heels and enough diamond to cause Kanye West constipation. We considered telling one such bimbo that short denim skirt and white top has been out of fashion for year but feared for our personal safety.

Best parties - CBLDF's party in conjunction with Suicide Girls. Althought we decided there was not enough ''girls'' and too many ''suicide''

Joint party by Dark Horse, WETA and Gentle Giant to honor Ray Harryhausen included the unveiling of a life-size statue. The crowd marveled while the younger generation wondered what was all the fuss and quickly went back to their margaritas.

Best after-party - my room, 3 am, streaming KEXP and drinking champagne from the mini-bar

I wish I wish I wish - i have more time next year to actually see the convention & spend time with friends

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Dinner at Risko

Baby Crumpet with Jenn & Lilly

Dinner w/t the Riskos at their wonderful Leschi home (love the magnetic paint in the kitchen). Jenn is the fabulous publisher of Shelf Awarness - the leading newsletter on publishing news - and a wonderful cook. Dinner was homemade dip, shrimp w/t grits, salad and for dessert cherries & blueberries baked (baked!) with whipped cream. Add a few bottles of wine and everything is good to go.

Jenn's husband, Braden, is an IT security guy at Starbucks but we don't really believe that's his real job. Braden was a crypto in the Army, is fluent in Arabic and used to run the show at McAfee (think Randy Shaftoe from Cryptonomicon but thinner & better cook). He probably spend his day trying to break into Dunkin' Donuts' mainframe. Otherwise it can't be true that working at Starbucks is filled with coffee & food tastings all day as Braden claimes, can it?

Saturday, July 15, 2006

Cat crazy

No, this does not mean we're crazy about cats. I mean, we are, but that's not what it means here.

The two feline representatives in this household - Truffles & Rosemary have been with us since September 2001. They have done everything together, from sleeping on the couch to chasing birds in the backyard to traveling 4,000 miles across the country inside the same cage. They've always been loving, cuddling, playful friends. Until now....

Something happened inside Truffles a few weeks ago. Truffles begin to get to agitated everytime she sees Rosemary. Well, not everytime, but only some of the time, which is even more confusing. When it happens Truffles would growl and snarl at Rosemary, and at time outright attack with a fury, a few times chasing Rosemary around the house. Poor Rosemary, always the delicate one, has retreated to her sanctuary on the 3rd floor and peeing around the house. She is also carrying various battle wounds. Big A came house recently and found one of Truffles' claw lodged in Rosemary's nose. Ouch.

We guess one reason is what over educated people call ''misdirected aggression''. We get a lot of critters through our backyard and a specific band of raccoons really gets Truffles going, who wants nothing less than to go outside and tear them to pieces. Well, we don't allow that of course (the result would be quite the opposite, if you know raccoons). So the theory goes Truffles has all this aggression built up inside and is taking it out on Rosemary.

We consulted friends including La Gringa who gave various advice on how to keep the raccoons away. We also saw the vet who does what vets do - gave us drugs. Specifically kitty prozac for Truffles to help her ''feel happy''. I'm a bit suspicious but we're giving it a try.

Meanwhile if anyone out there has suggestions please holler!

Thursday, July 13, 2006

Book Stud visits city of coffee

Book Stud is in town apparently for business, however so far we've only been eating, drinking coffee, eating, drinking beer, eating and drinking wine. What her business is I have no idea.

Baby Crumpet is quite taken by this new admirer (check out the pants Book Stud knitted for her) and showed her appreciation by chumping on Book Stud's delicate fingers.

Rosemary also tried to win her affection by apparently trying to get into her bed & nibbling on her ears. Given that this is a family blog and Rosemary is a feline I'll refrain from further scandalous details....

Among the activties taken place during the visit to Seattle includes coffee at Vivace on Capital Hill; lunch at Matt's in the Market (tuna sandwich w/t wasabi & mama lil' peppers); fruit rollups and honey sticks at the Market; mole sausages (made from pork, chocolate, cinnamon & achote peppers) at Salumi; and the obligatory stop at Elliot Bay bookstore.

Dinner was at the house of dear friends & fabu authors/human beings where we were treated to salmon cakes, french beans and wild rice & lots of delicious Rioja wine. We love it when people visit!

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

video: baby crumpet eating sweet potatoes

Do not try this at home

Monday, July 10, 2006

Real food here we come

Baby Crumpet has started eating real food

Early results are....ur....sloppy

She had zero interest in (blearh) rice cereals so we quickly graduated to sweet potatoes, carrots & banana. I'm just waiting for the excuse to give her bacon & cheese. They do that in France don't they?

Crumpet is a ducky

Check out Crumpet's ducky outfit!

Dinner at Gracie's, who is a phenomenal cook. She made lasagna with homemade bechmel sauce and sangria (from a Nigela Lawson recipe). Yum! Topped off with a wonderful fresh raspberry/blueberry & fresh cream.

Somehow the dinner conversation which included Gracie's friends visiting from Boston - centered around more food !?! You see Gracie & 7 of her girlfriends recently went to Vegas and had one of those to-die-for meals at The Nob Hill in MGM. The tasting menu sounded simply stupendous with healthy helpings of French/San Francisco cuisine. Read in the WSJ that the legendary Joel Rubuchon just opened a restaurant there that features a 16-course tasting menu. Must go there.

Lyle Lovett

Saw Lyle Lovett & his big band at Chateau Ste-Michelle last night.

Great show. Lyle had a 17-piece (!) band including 4 gospel back-up singers. He went through the list of his greatest hits - from I LOVED YOU YESTERDAY to HERE I AM and SIMPLE SONG. The band was terrific, all experienced musicians in their own right. In fact we suspect only one of them was under 50.

The setting was spectacular. Blue skies. Wine flowing freely to people sitting on the lawn. Couple hot air balloons flew overnight over a full moon a distant Mount Rainier. Almost kinda cheesy.

Went with our mates Gracie, Ewan, Cathy & John. Gracie works at the Chateau so got us into the ''VIP'' party for much yummy free food. Both John & Ewan are soon-to-be-fathers so they got a does of stories from me, because, you know, I'm so experienced and all.

STYX is playing there next. Should be, um, interesting.

Special shout out to Dan (the Man) who watched Baby Crumpet so we can go play...