Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Boastfest of champions

Chip and his buddies Jeff, Tyler and Matt played in a charity golf tournament this past Sunday. Which charity, Chip does not know. Something about football scholarships. You know, a cause near and dear to all of their hearts since they all played football in high school and college. Oh, wait. No. Chip was the only one to play football, and that was for the Parkway West Longhorns. Basically, the guys just like to hang out and play golf, and if they can say, "it's for charity," well, then, all the better.

Chip returned from the tournament around 8 p.m. on Sunday. I asked how he played, and he said, "We won." Let's just say I didn't do a good job of hiding my surprise. "The whole thing? Matt and Jeff played, right?" I quickly recovered with, "I mean, I didn't even think they liked golf." My next question, of course was, "What did you win?"

For the rest of the night, I heard all about how fortunate I was to live with a golfing champion, and how he was going to take me out to a "nice steak dinner" to celebrate his success. Using the Carmine's gift certificate he won, of course. I played along, and told him that this is great and I'm oh-so-very proud, but the bragging must end tomorrow. Little did I know that his buddies would pick up where Chip left off.

I received this message from Matt on Monday:

I was on today and failed to see anything in regards to our first place finish at the golf tournament yesterday. I found this very upsetting. Chip, Tyler, Jeff and I worked really hard to finish first so we could take the loves of our lives out to a nice dinner. Please send me an email when you update your blog. I would appreciate it. Thank you in advance.

Which was quickly followed by a message from Tyler:

Chip didn’t have one drink yesterday and spoke only once. When I asked him what was wrong he said “I really want to win this one for Debbie. She really deserves a night out at Carmine’s and I want to do this for her and my future child.”

We (Matt, Jeff and I) started to refer to the golf display he was putting on as "The Show for Tro." Birdies from his putter were flying left and right. It was quite inspiring and blog material for sure.

I laughed so hard I started crying. Show for Tro? That's pretty good. As entertaining as their emails were, Tyler's photo creation (above) sealed the deal. I had no choice but to post about their victory.

So there you have it. I am married to a comedian and a champion. And not only that, but his friends are comedians and champions as well -- with mad photo editing skills, to boot.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

The name at the top of our list? It's Pat.

Pregnant women tend to elicit a lot of interesting questions and comments. The best, of course, are from children.

Our good friends the Flemings -- Anne, Bob and Clare -- were talking about Baby Lindh the other night and Clare asked if we knew yet whether we're having a boy or a girl. When Anne said, "No, they're not going to find out," an incredulous Clare responded with "EVER?"

Anne said that Clare was very serious, and thus very confused (and irritated) when her parents proceeded to giggle about it for the rest of the night.

Clare is quite possibly one of the brightest and cutest little girls I know, and yet, here I am, selling her out on my blog. I'm pretty sure I won't be getting another handmade card from her anytime soon.

Well, hello there

Brennan hit the neighborhood pool for a swim this weekend, and it didn't take long before he charmed Brian's friend's little girls out of their pool toy. What can we say? The boy has a way with the ladies. Which is exactly what all of Brian's friends -- all of whom have little girls -- feared would happen.

Somewhere in Kansas, Brian is puffing his chest out in pride.

Click here for a few more of the little lothario.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Life by the TGP

Living in Shaw can seem like a bit of a job at times, but just when I get bummed out by a neighbor who tears up her perfectly nice zoysia in order to plant a vegetable garden in her front yard, I learn about stuff like this. Yes, Andy, it's true: there is going to be a naked bike ride in Tower Grove Park this Saturday. While I agree with the group's objectives, no, I am not a member. I read about it here. And, no, I do not plan to participate, but only because pregnant women aren't supposed to ride bikes because their center of gravity is all thrown out of whack. Otherwise you know I'd be there, getting all tribal and body painting the bump.

I have a feeling this ride could either really help or hurt the Tower Grove Farmers' Market, which is held near the TGP pool pavilion -- the same location as the ride's starting point. The pool and playground are of course swarming with children most Saturday mornings, so I guess we'll see just how liberal city parents are after all. This is going to be awesome.

I know, I know. My "if it's not hurting anyone, go for it" philosophy is purely situational and I may change my opinion on such matters once I have to explain naked bike riders to Tro, but I wish the group nothing but cloudy skies and cool breezes this coming Saturday. Chip and I never manage to make it to the International Festival, Pride Fest or the countless other random activities and festivals that go on in Tower Grove Park, but I do love that we live one block from a park where everyone is welcome, clothed or not.

Friday, July 25, 2008

A wow and a whew for the weekend

It's been a busy week so things are a little slow on the Team Botanical front. Oh, who am I kidding? We just weren't funny this week. Oh, and not one stranger approached me with a free beer. Sorry, but I just can't write under these conditions.

I am, however, going into the weekend happy as a clam because I received two great bits of news in the past two days. Yesterday I learned that our good friends are expecting Baby #2 in February, and let's just say they make pretty good babies. What can I say? I'm partial to the cute ones.

I received the other good bit of news a few hours ago. A high school friend's four-week-old son underwent a five-hour surgery today to repair two holes in his heart. It's been a roller coaster for them all week, so I was thrilled to hear that he came through with flying colors and is peacefully recovering at the children's hospital in Atlanta.

All in all, it's not a bad way to go into the weekend.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Next time, just point

Chip does love his morning comedy routines. I'm still not completely on board, but it is hard not to laugh. This morning's exchange took place as I was getting ready for work.

Me: Which shoe do you like better?

Chip: Definitely the strappy one.

Me: Great, thanks.

Chip: The other one looks like something an 80-year-old nurse would pick if you told her to go buy a strappy sandal. Did it come with a maternity outfit or something?

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Friday, July 18, 2008

The first temptation of Buddy

George and Lucia returned from their Danube River cruise and London trip a few weeks ago, and they were kind enough to bring Tro a stuffed bear from Harrods in London. It is incredibly adorable, ever-so-soft and ridiculously well branded. That Mohammed Al Fayed knows what he is doing.

Seasoned grandparents that they are, George told me that they spent quite some time going through all of the bears so they could find one without button eyes. I think button eyes are adorable and should not be discriminated against, but I managed to keep that to myself. Unfortunately, my face gave me away, because Lucia said, "You know, so the baby doesn't choke." Oh, yeah. Choking hazards. Dammit, forgot about those. Score one for The Luce.

Either way, I am delighted by our little Harrods bear, which I have originally enough named Harrod. Dodi was an option, but I thought that might be a little too dark for a baby. Buddy, however, could care less about what the bear is named as long as he can have it for his very own.

Harrod sat on the kitchen counter for a few days, and it was the first thing Buddy would look for upon entering the kitchen. If Chip or I held it, Buddy would pull a prairie dog so he could get as close to it as possible. I don't think he would destroy it; I think he's just fascinated by this fuzzy little contraption. Nevertheless, one cannot be too safe when it comes to curious Labs, so Harrod is now tucked away in a dresser drawer. Let's just hope Tro isn't covered in fuzz, as I'm pretty sure Lucia would also frown on storing one's baby in a dresser drawer.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Random acts of beer

Buddy and I went for a stroll Tuesday night, and it was definitely one of our more entertaining Shaw experiences. To set the scene, I have to describe my super-hot outfit: a blue Schlafly T-shirt, black Adidas shorts and tennis shoes. Buddy was bedecked in his usual ensemble of a leash, leader and collar, all in red. At least his clothes always match.

When we reached the corner of Thurman and Botanical, an older gentleman in a sedan waved us through the intersection. My right hand was full of South City journals (the bane of our block's existence) and Buddy's leash was in my left hand, so I was only able to give him a thank you nod instead of my usual wave (which Chip calls the crazy waver wave).

I deposited the papers in the corner trash can and was turning to take off down Thurman when I heard, "Ma'am! Ma'am!" I turned to see that same older gentleman walking toward us, so I turned down the iPod and started to ask if he needed directions. As he jogged across the street, he said "I saw your shirt, and it's not Schlafly, but here you go." And with that he pulled a Widmer beer out of the pocket of his his cargo shorts and handed it to me. I could barely get out a laugh and a "thanks" before he jogged back to his car and took off toward Magnolia.

I don't know if it was the Schlafly T-shirt that did it or if he mistook the baby bump for the belly of a serious beer drinker, but it was just so unexpected and nice. Odd, maybe, but nice. Even now, just thinking about that 30-second interaction with a beer-bearing stranger still brings a smile to my face. I'm not even bitter that I can't drink the beer.

You know, the world would really be a better place if there were more random acts of beer. I might start packing a cooler every day so I can gift strangers on the street with bottles of golden delicious. It will be wonderful. Until Chip has to bail me out of jail for providing alcohol to minors.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Just one word: plastics

I came across this article while reading Time, which Chip lovingly refers to as a leftist rag. If you don't want to read the piece, the gist of the article is that all plastics are bad ... but wait, we're not 100% sure. Well, we're pretty sure, so just to be safe, you shouldn't use anything with plastic.

Come again? I agree that there's too much plastic junk in the landfills and I'm all for avoiding toxins, but how, pray tell, would you like me to get my food stuffs and toiletries home? And once I have them home, shall I keep them in glass jars?

The good news is that some plastics are better than others. Not good, I'm sure, but better. I already recycle plastics with a one or a two on the bottom, and luckily those seem to be on most of what we use. But I guess for my next trick, I'll have to start checking for the numbers three and seven on anything I buy. But what if the shampoo or food product I simply must have comes with a three or a seven on the container? I'm not sure I'll have the resolve to put it down and get on with my life. For instance, I just checked and the sugar-free chocolate pudding snack packs Tro likes so much have a stupid seven on the bottom. What the hell am I going to do now? Make my own pudding?

The other thing this article recommends is avoiding canned foods, especially acidic ones like tomatoes. Oh, and plastic shower liners. I'm sure I can come up with some tomato alternative when chili season rolls around, but how am I supposed to keep my pretty outer shower curtain dry? I'd love to write the piece's author and suggest he provide links to stores that provide such products, but I guess that would take away from that journalistic integrity thing they were always talking about in school.

UPDATE: I just checked the St. Louis curbside recycling site, and now they will apparently take any plastics numbered one through seven, with the exception of six. Don't ask me what six did wrong. The good news is that I can now alleviate any guilt I feel about buying and using threes and sevens by turning around and recycling those toxic containers. And just like that, all is well. Jell-o snack packs for everyone!

Eight is great

In honor of Brennan's eight month birthday, I bring you not one, but two fabulous photo sets. It's a big day for all of B's fans.

Speaking of big, Sherri informed me last week that Brennan is almost 20 lbs. Let's hear it for hearty German stock. I just hope that all of this crawling business doesn't cause him to lose his adorably round sausage legs or the dimples in his hands. Even though I've been enamored with Brennan from the get go, I think the past few months have been some of his cutest. I don't know if it's the smiles, the babbling or the way he grabs onto your hand, but I'm positively smitten.

Go on, see for yourself. My mom's set is here, and Sherri's set is here.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Brotherly love

Not only is Hunter incredibly protective of Sherri and Brennan, he is also quite patient with the little lad.

Hunter is notorious for stealing items and taking everyone on chases around the dining room table, so I never thought I would say this, but Buddy could learn a lot from him. I love my B to death, but he would totally sell me out for a Beggin' Strip. Which is why I have a putter stashed behind the bedroom door.

Get your tall boys here

As Chip and I enjoyed our Coldstone frozen treats last night amid the picturesque parking lot setting that boasts views of a Walgreen's, PetsMart and other strip mall-like stores, Chip asked what is definitely a more Debbie-like question.

Chip: Urban Can? What the hell do they sell there?

Me: What in the world are you talking about?

Chip: That store over there by Verizon.

Me: Do you mean Urban TAN? It's a tanning salon.

Chip: Oh, I didn't think that made sense.

Me: What did you think it was, a store that only sells 2x4s? I mean, we live in the city, but seriously.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Post office poison

Should you ever find yourself headed to the Fenton post office, I implore you to turn your car around and take 141 into Valley Park. There you will find the most perfect little post office you ever did see. Alas, in my quest to combine a Panera lunch run with a post office stop, I deserted my personable Valley Park postal workers in lieu of the painfully slow Fenton post office.

While the no-eye-contact and no-thank-yous mumbling postal worker who waited on me was somewhat tolerable, I will never go back. The employees are rude to the customers and one another, everything moves at a snail's pace, and there are too many pajama pants-wearing patrons with picket fence teeth for my liking. After 20 minutes in the post office, my disposition was so dour that I gave a booming "you're welcome!" to the two incoming patrons who failed to thank me for holding the door for them. I hate it when people don't acknowledge common courtesies, but usually I don't say anything. That's Chip's job.

So, there you have it. Farewell Fenton, and hello Valley Park. I shall never desert you again for an asiago roast beef sandwich.

Methinks Tro is on the move

For three days now I've had this strange fluttering feeling in my belly. Like the missed period that started the whole shebang, I attributed the signs to lack of sleep, nerves and possibly the chili I had for lunch on Saturday. I am all about the rationalization.

Since this has been going on for three days now without any other side effects, I'm guessing that I can finally feel the avocado-sized bambino moving around a bit. It's totally weird, and something I assume a handful of Smooth Dissolve Tums won't fix.

Friday, July 11, 2008

B mobile

Brennan decided to celebrate our nation's independence this past weekend by striking out on his own. The little monkey finally put it all together and started crawling. Life at the Jones house will never be the same. In fact, it didn't take long for him to discover the toy bin, dump over the dogs' water bowl and do a kibble taste test. Hunter and Holly still aren't sold on this mobile baby thing, and no one has the heart to tell them it will only get worse.

Click here for the full crawling set. My mom is in KC this week taking care of Brennan (Steve was on Brennan duty last week), so plan to see more pictures next week.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

The big 100

For my 100th post, I bring you Italy photos. Yes, we really did go to Rome and Venice. And not Venice, IL, like some suspected.

After four months of editing, the album is still coming in at 235 images. You have been warned.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Farewell, old friends

There is one thing that I brought to the marriage that Chip can't stand: my blue Adidas sandals. Well, there are probably a lot of things that test his patience, but this is an actual object that drives him insane.

For the past two years he has begged, threatened and cajoled, but as much as I love new things, I love my Adidas sandals more. I purchased them before my first year of college for use as shower shoes. I soon learned that they offered so much more than just a safety barrier between my feet and a damp tile floor. I wore them in Carmen at Eastern, Lathrop at Mizzou, the Alpha Chi house and beyond. When I graduated, they came to Highland and then St. Louis with me. Apparently life in the big city was tough, because it was during my stint on Eichelberger that they developed their first tear. But the sandals and I soldiered on, tears be damned.

They looked horrendous, but they were just so darned comfortable. The tears increased in size and occasionally I stubbed my toe when the front part of the foot would bend underneath the rest of the sandal. They were also responsible for quite a few of my falls up and down the stairs. And yet I was loathe to give them up.

A few weeks ago I slipped them on and took Buddy for a stroll around the neighborhood, and as I tripped my way around Shaw, I realized that it was time to terminate our relationship. So the search began. I checked out the Nike and Adidas options, only to be disappointed by either the bubbled insole, the color or the fit. I know, I know. Ironic, considering I could barely keep the Adidas sandals on my feet. I finally settled on a pair of heavy duty nylon Polo flip-flops, and have been wearing them around the house for the past three weeks. But yet I couldn't bring myself to toss the Adidas sandals, because really, can't you always use a back-up in case something happens to the 20 other pairs of flip-flops in the closet? I finally tired of pushing the old sandals around the bottom of the closet, and on Sunday I presented Chip with the prettiest sight he ever did see -- my sandals in the bottom of the garbage can.

The things you do for love. And arch support.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Birthday boy

Happy 31st birthday to my very own George Charles Lindh III. You, sir, are the bee's knees.

Monday, July 7, 2008

Again with the encouraging words

Me: My tailbone hurts for some reason. Isn't that weird?

Chip: You're pregnant, babe. You better just get used to the pain. It will only get worse.

Thursday, July 3, 2008

I can't believe she picked Brennan's safety over the blog

I just got off the phone with my sister, and I have one word for you: spoilsport.

Me: Would you consider taking a picture of Brennan with a sparkler in his hand for my July 4th post?

Sherri: No.

Me: What if you put an unlit sparkler in one hand, and a book of matches in his other hand?

Sherri: No.

Me: But think of what a great photo op it would be!

Sherri: No.

Me: Okay, fine. No sparkler. But, I think you're being a little overprotective here.

Sherri: I'll talk to you later.

Stay tuned. I'm pretty sure I can wear her down.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Someone with three older sisters really should know better

At Monday's doctor appointment, I was rather surprised to hear that my weight hadn't changed since my previous visit four weeks ago. As much as I love the Ted Drewes and cupcakes, there are definitely days when I just don't have an appetite. And, for that matter, I really do try to consume my fair share of fruits and vegetables, so I guess I'm doing okay. Sorry Tro, but it's not all fun and games on Botanical.

Because I never know if it will be a must-eat-now day or a take-it-or-leave-it day, I always like to be prepared with lots of snacks. Nothing entertains Chip more than the morning snack-packing routine. In addition to my lunch, I usually throw in some extras like fruit, granola bars, almonds, yogurt and the like. Depending on what I bring, the Gladware containers and accompanying utensils can really add up. The whole time I'm gathering my gear, Chip just stands there and snickers. Occasionally he offers suggestions like, "Do you want me to bag up the leftover roast?" or "Have you thought about setting up the George Foreman grill at your desk?" And then there was the day I found a huge block of cheddar cheese in my bag. The worst part is that Chip's right; it really is quite ridiculous. And then I laugh, and that only encourages him.

As professional and considerate as Chip can be, he never lost that pesky little brother quality. I, on the other hand, am the stereotypical first born child. Which means I'm not above telling his mother.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Good morning, fans

Sherri and Brennan were in town this past Friday and Saturday for a whirlwind visit. The time we spent together, however, was quite eventful. Seven month olds like to keep things exciting. Friday night Brennan decided to toss some regurgitated squash on his freshly pressed white oxford mere minutes before we were supposed to leave, which meant that he rode in the car in a T-shirt and diaper while his damp oxford dried. When we arrived at our destination, Sherri realized that in her haste to wash Brennan's shirt she forgot to pack diapers. So, off to the grocery store we went. While Sherri purchased the diapers, I prepped Brennan for a parking lot diaper and clothing change. Eventually, we made it to our destination. Nothing like an adorable little boy to make everyone forget that you're an hour late.

Brennan's cuteness, however, did not keep Sherri from receiving her first parenting critique from none other than our 11-year-old cousin Allison. It went a little something like this:

Allison: I want to see Brennan before we leave.

Sherri: Okay, I think Uncle Denis took him outside for a bit. Let's go find them. (opens one door and looks outside) Nope, not there. (starts walking down the hall) Maybe they're on the other side.

Allison: Wow, it must be really scary when you don't even know where you baby is.

Apparently Sherri could learn a lot from the baby-sitting class Allison recently completed.

Brennan then decided to cap off the night with a massive blowout and a no-sleep-til-10 o'clock strike. I'm telling you, the boy knows how to do it up right.

Click here for a few pictures I snapped before they left for the airport on Saturday.