30 March, 2008


We're back! The weather this weekend has been unbelievable-- today it was 22 degrees and sunny! We actually had brunch this morning outside at the Stadt Cafe and soaked up the sun and the atmosphere.

Prague was wonderful. I don't know what it is about that city-- you know how it is when you meet someone and click with them immediately? That's how I've always felt about Prague. Something about it brings the intrepid side of me to the surface.

The boys and I roamed around happily for two days. Spent an afternoon at the National Museum and then took in the sights. S and B are finally old enough that they can participate in planning what we should see, which was fun. They loved the castle and the Charles Bridge, but secretly I think their favorite activity was the breakfast buffet in the hotel.

Easter break is now over and life returns to normal tomorrow...

Gargoyles IGargoyles II

25 March, 2008

Where for art thou, Spring?

I am losing my mind. really. truly. The kids have a couple of weeks off and the weather has been horrendous. snowy. gray. This Florida girl has had it with winter.

There were only two things that prevented me from stringing myself up with my shoelaces last week. First of all, we have no rafters. Secondly, my parents in law came down for a much needed diversion.

We took a quick jaunt out to Schloss Lichtenstein and just the very act of having to be civil for 4 days has actually improved my mood. somewhat.

Tomorrow M will be traveling to Prague on business and I have decided to take the kids and go with him. I doubt we will be able to spend any time with him, but I'm thinking it will do us all some good to get out and get some fresh air and soak up some culture. More news hopefully upon my return...

17 March, 2008

Brahms' (very cold) Hungarian dances

We attended a piano concert with the kids yesterday evening. The whole performance was spectacular, but the real treat of the evening was a duo that played lively pieces "for four hands". They were amazing-- their hands were flying up and down the keys in a superhuman feat of digital gymnastics.

I leaned over to B and whispered: "Can you believe how fast their fingers are moving?!"

His answer?

"YEAH! But I'll bet they couldn't do that if it was freezing in here..."

11 March, 2008

She is not amused...

Poor D. She's doomed to spend the next two weeks with a lampshade on her head. And unfortunately she doesn't even get to enjoy the tequila buzz that's the normal precursor to this kind of activity. She is definitely not amused...

Her elbow operation was a success-- they removed a bone splinter that had been caught in the joint and has been causing chronic inflammation for who knows how long.

But her feet are still a mystery. How on earth does a dog walk around on (at least) 5 broken toes? The vet says he's never seen anything like it. Which isn't comforting because he also can't figure out how it would have happened. He's guessing that she might have done it when she was a puppy and the bones weren't fully finished forming. (which is ironic because we carried this dog up and down stairs for the first year of her life in order to make sure that she didn't put too much stress on those sensitive Labrador joints...)

I'm just hoping that the vet is right and that this doesn't mean that there's something inherently wrong with the bones in her feet... (*shudder*) In any case, it hasn't seemed to slow her down at all. You would never know that anything was wrong!

I'm trying not to think about worst case scenarios right now, though. Am just looking forward to the point when she's healed and we can let her off of the leash and let her bound around to her heart's content...

10 March, 2008


Am killing time in a small town in the Black Forest waiting for D the Wonderdog to get out of surgery. The good news is that only one elbow is affected and that this particular problem can be repaired.

The bad news? The x-rays revealed multiple tiny fractures in her feet. She´s got a bunch of bone splinters floating around-- the vet says he´s never seen anything like it in a dog this young, this small, this fit, etc. He doesn´t think it would do any good to go in and clean the splinters out-- feels that would be too invasive and might cause more harm than good. He said that since she´s small and fit that her body should be able to compensate for now. Later she might be in for trouble with arthritis. The only thing we can do is be watchful and wait.

It´s hard not to feel like the world is falling down around my shoulders...

09 March, 2008

I'd rather be listening to Prokofiev

Last Monday I rushed my very sick cat to the vet in the middle of the night.

Tomorrow (Monday) I will take D the Wonderdog in for surgery on her elbow(s).

Today, however, we went to a live performance of Peter and the Wolf, which was so beautifully played that it brought tears to my eyes. I think prefer this kind of drama...

*image thanks to Wikipedia

07 March, 2008

All-you-can-eat buffet

B is on a bird kick. They've been talking about them at school and a couple of weeks ago his class took a field trip to a bird sanctuary. He made a suet-ball which we hung up in the garden and at breakfast he spends an inordinate amount of time staring dreamily out the window and narrating all of the avian activities outside.

This morning he told me in a very serious tone that he'd like a bird feeder. But not a suet ball like we've got outside, but a real bird feeder. filled with seeds. so the birds can have brunch.

I stifled a giggle. Why brunch?

Because then the birds can keep going back and eat as much as they want!

06 March, 2008

Good question!

B is about to lose his first tooth and has been thinking a lot about the tooth fairy lately.

Hey Mama, remember when S tried to trick the tooth fairy?

Yeah. But it didn't work because she knew that wasn't his tooth. Fairies know everything.

Oh really?! Cool! I hope I see her when she comes, because I've got a question for her.

You do? What's that?!

I'm going to ask her if aliens really exist...

02 March, 2008

Even sand is looking appetising at this point...

I visited an acupuncturist / witch doctor this week. I'm not sick, but have been feeling a little off-balance for a while. I've had digestive issues for about a decade now-- it was diagnosed as IBS at one point, but I've always thought that that was just a substitute for: "I've got no idea what's wrong with you, but it's not serious."

Anyway, I've read about this woman and went in to see about a "tune up". I got a great feeling from her-- she's got a whole wall of credentials and has amassed more than 30 years of experience.

She did all kinds of diagnostic tests and deemed me a "very interesting case." (great...) She's convinced that I suffer from multiple allergies / sensitivities and has advised me to give up grain products and dairy. Those of you who know me know what a catastrophe this is-- I love milk and often drink almost a liter per day!

I'm not feeling very enthusiastic but figure I'll give it a go for 2 weeks just to see what happens. The problem is that I cannot metabolise sugar, so that's out. I've been a vegetarian for almost two years. Now no grain and no dairy? That doesn't leave much. Something's gotta give, and I'm afraid that my ethical principles might have to end up falling by the wayside in order to fill my stomach.

The one saving grace is that for some reason she says that spelt (dinkel) is OK. It's a mystery to me, since as far as I know spelt is just another type of wheat, but hey, I'll take anything I can get at this point! (Ze Germans are big spelt enthusiasts...)

I'm now on day 3 and I think I'm feeling better but I'm also RAVENOUS! Anybody know of any good low-carb vegan recipes? (ha!) Somebody HELP ME!!!