Thursday, December 16, 2010

Well that was a pregnant gap - nine months of silence - a golden pause. Goldibear has loaded PandaBaby onto the e-blogger server and recovered the archived blogs, so here we are again. For friends with links to PandaBaby, we have a different 'web address' now, so please update our link! Thank You!

Welcome to PandaBaby's realm of 'what's happening', poems, opinions & concerns, observations and discoveries.

What's New:
Fighting depression with the help of an experienced therapist, and discovered in the first session yesterday that two traumatic episodes I experienced in my childhood were due to my mother being in the throes of severe postpartum depression. (Not to be confused with 'baby blues' experienced by many new moms as the body adjusts its hormones after a birth.) Post-partum depression can endanger new moms and those around them. The Mayo clinic online shows how to tell whether it is the baby blues or postpartum depression, and what to do.

What's been happening:
We went house hunting, found one we liked, packed, and ... didn't move. Turned out the underwriter found the owner was "flipping". Yes, that is the reason it was turned down, called the flipping rule. Tch,Tch, can't buy a house and sell it for over 120% of the price within the first 90 days - or at least, not with a government approved loan. The depreciating real estate market has caused the house to lose over $15,000 value in the few months since our offer, so in the long run we made a lucky escape. In the short run though, we had seventy boxes to unpack and still need to find a house.

Grateful for friends both old and new, PandaBaby wishes everyone a joyful Winter Solstice on December 21, at 3:38 PM (if you live in the Northern Hemisphere and on the west coast). Throw another Yule log on the fire!

Monday, April 26, 2010

Not hiding

Pandababy is not hiding (although Pandas are shy). We're selling a domain and our 'address' for Pandababy blog has changed. We regret if this has made it temporarily difficult for our friends to visit. Unfortunately, our comment history was lost in the move, but we still value our friends and look forward to hearing from you.

We are working on it.

Saturday, April 24, 2010


Somewhere the sun is shining.
Is that hope enough for me
when dark clouds limn my vision
'til I can hardly see?

Somewhere the Milky Way shines bright
In night skies rich with dark.
Is it enough to know that
when my night's obscured with mirke?

If clouds won't move, and mirke won't fade,
I'll do the only thing I can.
I'll move myself and travel far
to find the sun and stars again.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Lived & Loved Completely

Jason Scott Siegal
December 19th, 1972 - January 17th, 2010

A more loving or generous son-in-law you will not find anywhere.

Jason, we miss you.

Friday, January 15, 2010

The leather bustier I always wanted

Earphones arrived for the wii today, and I tried them out with my new Guitar Hero World Tour Band Kit. Check out the durable virtual drum set, with real drum sticks, two cymbal pads, a foot pedal for bass drum, and three color coded drum pads. I'm happy because I can turn the volume up as high as I want, and Goldibear is happy because he doesn't have to listen.

The wireless Ear Force W3 'phones have an on/off switch and volume control on the earphones, and fits tightly enough to stay on with vigorous movement but comfortable enough for extended play sessions. The 'phones use one AAA battery for transmitting the signal to the base unit which plugs into DC power and into the wii. Very cool for keeping peace in a rockin' panda cave.

Now, about that black leather vest... My virtual life includes a new avatar in Guitar Hero. I gave her white hair and dressed her in a $285 leather vest, which I bought with the virtual money I earned playing my virtual gigs with my virtual band.

Practicing songs with Kurt Cobain or The Beatles on the wii may not earn me a place in a live band, but there are some musical elements that are reinforced with these programs, such as developing a sense of rhythm and timing, gaining an ear for the individual parts in a band and how they go together in a song, and getting immediate feedback on coordination and focus.

Plus it is great fun, and the drum set skills are said to transfer to real drums. A nice quiet way for kids of all ages to learn the drums, as long as the earphones are plugged in too. Getting these two wii games for my birthday and Christmas last month was like opening a box expecting maybe a puppy, and finding you got the whole zoo! Thank you my wonderful son and daughter, a million thanks!

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Sisters Rock

Yesterday, my sister had the the day off from nursing, and she drove from Astoria for a visit. We spent some time at Barnes & Noble where I bought Mennonite in a Little Black Dress - a laugh-out-loud funny book in a darkly humorous sort of way.

For the rest of the afternoon, we played duets on the wii with Rock Band The Beatles. I played the guitar and she sang, and then she played the drums with my guitar. We surprised ourselves with how well we did and it was great fun.

My life is nearly all virtual. The real food I eat gets logged into; I exercise with My Fitness Coach, a wii program; my books are digital in a variety of modes - Adobe and Kindle and other; I listen to digital music on my iPod or on iTunes on my desktop; I'm learning to play chess with ChessMaster - Grandmaster edition on my computer; my ancestors are collected in Legacy, a computer genealogy program.

And to think, when I born, computers were more or less the stuff of fantasy and science fiction.

Friday, January 1, 2010

Happy 2010

Happy New Year and may it be filled with all your dreams come true.

I have made only one New Year's Resolution for 2010:

To Be Fully Present in the Now.

I have spent the first day of the New Year just doing what is most important to me at each moment - a day filled with little and mundane things but very satisfying - no coulds, shoulds, oughts, in short - no worries mate!

My son and daughter gave me Guitar Hero the complete band set plus Rock Band the Beatles last month. The very best presents ever that I have received. That is what is up for the next moment: I'm going to go rock with the Beatles. (Decisions, decisions: should I choose the guitar, the drum set, or sing along with the mic? Right, all three then - guitar first.)

Yes, my son said it was the biggest shock of his life to come home for lunch the other day and find his mother singing About a Girl with Kurt Cobain. I'm not very tuneful so I like singing Cobain songs as his style is less demanding.

But the Beatles were my generation, and I could sing most of their songs in my sleep, plus the presentation is easy on the eyes and ears. Both Wii programs rate the difficulty of the songs and instruments but I find Rock Band the Beatles interface to be friendlier. Of course. They're the Beatles, after all.

What a wonderful New Year.