Saturday, January 31, 2009

Whale Tail Video

Here is some very rough footage of our (humpback) whale watching in Maui. This whale was slapping away with his tail on the water. Don't worry this is very zoomed in, we were really far away. Though, I can't help but think, that he was indicating that he didn't care for any company just then.

They are in their peak season so we are seeing whales spouting and breaching all day, it's really amazing, even for me who burned out as a child doing crew work for my dad's whale watching charter business.

Hope you enjoy the video.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Crayons and Laundry Don't Mix

What a day I had Sunday. After I got home from my morning walk, I was happy to hear my husband(AKA Viejo) had got the laundry going. We're leaving for Hawaii on Wednesday, and time is getting short, so I was grateful he had started this chore. Until it all went horribly wrong.

When Viejo pulled the laundry out of the dryer and found that it had been tye dyed with melted crayons. Not just one crayon, but from the rainbow of colors on the clothes and dryer, I'm guessing three or four in various colors, and even one sparkle crayon.What a nightmare.

I did my best to remember how many times I've run tissues through the laundry, leaving white lint all over all the clothes, to keep from completely freaking out at Viejo, and it worked. But we still needed to fix this. The load was basically all my daughters clothes, so I either needed to go buy her a new wardrobe for the trip immediately or figure out a way to get the crayon out. I suppose there was the third option of letting her walk around in an all tye dye wardrobe. I'm way to cheap to buy her all new clothes, and way to appearance conscious to let her walk around looking like a escapee from the commune, so I had to find a way to wash it out.

I googled it. Crayons in Laundry. I took much Solis in the plethora of poor soul who had suffered my same fate. And was I happy to find a concoction that many swore worked. The recipe called for.

2cups laundry detergent

1cup oxyclean

1/2 cup borax

1cup shout

1cup vinegar

It seemed like a lot of detergent to put in one load. I imagined soap bubbling out of the machine, like in that episode of The Brady Bunch, but it didn't. In fact after letting all the clothes soak for two hours in this mix it actually got nearly all of the crayon out. HOORAY!! I won't get into cleaning the dryer, suffice to say it involved oven cleaner and plenty of scrubbing.

Anyway, I better go pack for the trip, since I basically did nothing yesterday but one load of laundry, and have to work tomorrow. Just wanted to remind you all out there to check the kids pockets.


Saturday, January 24, 2009

Weekly Address

Here's the presidents weekly address. It's such a nice change to look forward to hearing the president speak, rather than trying to avoid it.


Tuesday, January 20, 2009

President Barack Obama

What an amazing morning. I am so happy that some of Martin Luther King's contemporaries were able to witness this event, that they paid so dearly for, and I hope they feel our gratitude.

I spent the morning with my neighbors laughing and crying, we are all so hopeful that this President will not only revitalize our country but also our patriotism, which has suffered fatally these last eight years. It is an incredible responsibility to lay at his feet, but I really think he is capable of it.

Today is the beginning of a new age in American politics, and fortunately, or unfortunately, there is nowhere to go but up.

Finally proud to call myself an American again,


Monday, January 19, 2009

I have a dream

Here's the entire I Have a Dream speech. It's amazing to see the footage of that day. Hope you enjoy it.

I got my 4 year old to watch it for about 2 minutes. I'll try again next year. She did listen to my whole shspeel(sp?) about him though.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Organizing for America

Barack sent me this video on Facebook, I thought I'd share it with you all, on the off chance you didn't get one. It's not very specific, but hopefully, he'll tell us more in the very near future. I think he'll be on TV Tuesday and maybe he'll mention something about it. In the mean time it's called Organizing for America.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Save Yourself

OK, I usually don't enjoy Suze Orman, but I just caught a brief part of a show of hers and I gotta say this was brilliant. She was talking about how women put so much into their families and save nothing for themselves. I think we all know this but then she used an excellent example. This behavior is so pervasive, that when we get on planes they have to make sure to remind us, that in case of emergency to put our air mask on first. Because they know our first instinct would be to put the air mask on the kid first, and possible pass out before we get ours on. This is such a great image, because we know in that situation we need to save ourselves so we can protect our child.

We all have to remember to save ourselves every day so we can keep our families safe or at least healthy and happy. Like Oprah says put yourself back on your list ladies. Go get a pedicure, read a book, get some exercise. I just wanted to share that. I thought it was such a great image to keep in our heads. Oh and I'm sure Suze wants you to ask for a raise and save money or something. I turned the TV off after the airplane analogy, so I don't know any of the financial info.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

State of the State

Holy Smokes! It ain't good. I admit I actually liked Arnold's State of the State speech this morning, even if he did reference Conan. He focused on the fact that we can't think or even talk about anything till we get this budget balanced. What I really liked was his suggestion to stop paychecks to representatives everyday that the budget is past due. I don't think the Representative (his audience) thought that was a good idea, as there wasn't even a single clap for it, but I thought it was perfect.

After the speech I went to pick up my daughter at school, where I was given a letter from LAUSD. The letter basically said, and I'm paraphrasing here, You thought public schools sucked before just wait till you see what they're going to be like with these new budget cuts. The letter warns of program cuts, increased class sizes, and major lay offs.

So, what do we do?? I haven't the foggiest idea.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Where Do Babies Come From?

We were just sitting down to dinner, when my four year old dropped the bomb. "Where do babies come from. I know mommies tummies but how do they get in there?" My interior monologue..."Oh shit, oh shit..don't freak out..act normal"

What I said was. "There are a few ways" O.K. I was buying time, trying to get my story together, try to figure out how graphic I should get. Not at all I decided. "Mommies and Daddies make them." Sprung out of my mouth. But as soon as I heard myself say it, I knew it didn't fly, even in her limited experience she knows sometimes there aren't moms and dads, sometimes there are just dads or just moms. I'm hoping I registered all that as quickly as I think I did. I continued "If there are two Daddies they find a women to help them, and if there are two mommies they find a man." Then I started thinking about the adopted children we know and felt I needed to throw something in about them."Sometimes, people can't take care of their baby and they give it to a family that wants a baby to love."

She seemed happy with all that. Then asked to see the baby picture of herself, these include Ultrasounds of her that she loves.

So I escaped, without too much trauma this time. I'm wondering how long till she puts together that I didn't really answer her question. Where will we be when she busts out with "yeah but HOW do mommies and daddies make them?" Then what do I say???

I guess I'll go Scarlette O'hara on that and worry about it tomorrow. Maybe I better buy a book.

Any suggestions?

LA Moms Blog

New blog up at LA Moms Blog

All about my presidential experiences

Friday, January 9, 2009


Wallander is the new Masterpiece Mystery series, with Kenneth Branagh. It's beautifully shot (in Sweden). The first episode they gave us really starts out intense. Serious chills. If you like cop drama kinda stuff with family issues thrown in, and don't get sick at the sight of blood, this is for you.

From the panel discussion at the PBS press tour I gathered that there are several books and that at least 3 more will be produced with Keneth Branagh. I believe some or all of them have been done in Sweden.

It premieres Sunday, May 10th at 9pm on PBS of course

George Carlin

I just watched the screenewr of the Mark Twain award for George Carlin, Which premieres Wed., Feb 4th. I love these, and if you do you'll love this one too. It has lots of comedians either telling their favorite Carline bit (stuff, Weatherman, etc..) or early encounters with him. Gary Shandling tells a story that almost brought me and him to tears. Lilly Tomlin remembers him fondly as does Joan Rivers, who I can usually do without, but actually was funny here. Denis Leary tell a great first meeting story too.

For myself, the first Carlin bit I remember is the "could be meat could be cake could be meatcake". It's not one of the big ones, he's describing meat loaf. I loved it and loved him from then on. Anyway, hopre you all get to see this and enjoy it too.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

PBS Press Tour photos

Here are the few photos I got yesterday. I want to blog more about all these shows. But here's the low down. From top left clockwise. First Kenneth Branagh's new show Wallander, looks great. He a Scandinavian detective with issues. Then we have Amy Sedaris who was doing her best to be amusing but the two guys she did the panel with were boring, and killed it. They were talking about a comedy retrospective called Make Em' Laugh, which is probably great. Sir Ian McKellen was lovely and funny. He was there to talk about his King Lear, but talked about a lot of other stuff too. LOVED HIM!! Finally there was a panel for the Mark Twain award's posthumous recipient George Carlin, consisting of his daughter Kelly, Richard Belzer, and Lewis Black, they were all very funny, but you couldn't help but be a little sad.
I've yet to really get a chance to go through my notes or watch the screeners for any of this so I'll try to be more detailed in future blogs.
OK my formatting is all screwy dis regard clockwise direction. I'll hope you recognize someone in each picture.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

pbs press tour thus far

Wow it's been really interested to this point. The Blueprint America talk this morning about American infrastructure is mind boggling and I will be writing a further researched blog on that in the future. From Blueprint we saw Ian McKellen give a very entertaining talk about his performance in King Lear and his life experiences.
We're off to lunch with the low down on programming and converter boxes.
I'm writing on the fly so please forgive spelling, grammar and my general illiterate technique.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

It's a PBS kind of week

Last night was the season opener of Antique Roadshow. I know this, cause it just so happens that my sister and I went to Palm Springs (where the opener was taped) to have our, unfortunately, not so priceless treasures appraised. We had a great time at the taping last summer, even if nothing we brought was worth more than $100. If you look very closely, at the very beginning of the show last night, all the way in the back you can see a very blurry image of my sister. Don't worry if you missed it, I have it Tivo'd. You can also look for us in the background next Monday night.

In more Elise/PBS news, tomorrow I'll be going to the PBS press tour for their 2009 season. It's very exciting, cause I get my first ever press credential. Do you think I should wear a fedora with a piece of paper that says press in it?? There will also be all kinds of celebs of the PBS variety, as well as Hollywood variety, and even Santa Monica's Stacey Peralta.

I can't wait. I'll bring my camera and computer and blog it all out ASAP, so stay tuned!!