A Jonathan Swift poem? Norse mythology? A mistranslation from the Greek? Shoddy thatched roof craftsmanship? Where does the phrase “raining cats and dogs” come from anyway? (Part 2 of our 2-post investigation)
“Why do my biscuits taste like metal?”
A few years ago, my husband began making biscuits on Saturday mornings. Although not all of his efforts have been equally delicious, we love starch in nearly all of its forms, so…
“Is it really unlucky to have peacock feathers in the house?”
In her book, Reading like a Writer, Francine Prose casually states that it's bad luck to have peacock feathers in the house. I'd never heard that before. So of course, I wanted to…
“How do we reset the storm glass?”
Last week, we tested our storm glass to see whether the crystals were forming (or dissolving) in response to changes in temperature. Short answer: Yes. At the end of the…
“How many colors do they grow corn in?”
The Six-Year-Old, upon learning that her blue corn chip is made of blue corn and not simply soaked in blue food coloring, asked: “How many colors do they grow corn in? Do…
“How long can jellyfish sting after they are dead?”
Last Christmas, when The (then) Four-Year-Old was surveying Panama City Beach for a likely spot to construct a landing pad for Santa and his reindeer, she came across a jellyfish.…
Happy Fourth of July!
Thatched roofs? Unsavory Elizabethan street sanitation practices? A 1652 Richard Brome play? Where does the phrase “raining cats and dogs” come from anyway?
While I was busy not blogging this month, it came to my attention that this blog is ten years old. Goodness. I thought it would be fun to mark its decade-aversary by revisiting a question post from the early days of the blog to see how well my answer has held up. Spoiler alert: Not well.
One side benefit of The 14-Year-Old being older than I think she can possibly be, is the fact that she is eligible to get the COVID-19 vaccine. We took her last week to one of our county’s mass vaccination sites. One shot down, one to go.
It’s too warm this week to knit blankets, so I’ve switched to amigurumi (the craft of crocheting little stuffed toys). It’s finicky work and I’m always deeply uncertain about the results, which is why as soon as there is a hint of coolness in the air, I plan to go right back to making blankets. Anyway, this week I made this unicorn.
All week I kept stumbling across useful articles and podcasts about this almost-there-but-not-quite-yet moment in the pandemic. Here are three of my favorites on muddling through this moment in the pandemic; helping middle schoolers establish and evolve critical coping skills to manage their stress, anger, and anxiety; and pandemic changes parents actually want to keep.
It’s springtime for the cacti too.
Palo Alto has installed eight new temporary murals designed to give residents struggling with the pandemic a bit of an emotional boost this spring. Last week, I visited the murals along California Avenue, and found myself spending a great deal of time with Carrie Lederer’s mural, Lost in My Abstract Garden.
With Santa Clara County slowly resuming economic and social activities, looking at some freshly installed public art is a great opportunity to get my entire family used to roaming freely around the world again.