John Jacob Jingleheimer Schmidt, that’s my name too!

Partially for fun, partially to remember some of the nicknames the girls have implemented in our family, I diagrammed the following chart.

Diagram of family nicknames


02 2008

Reflections on Toby’s Appearance

He may look like a giant Cheeto. Really he just enjoys neverending bowls of sweet potatoes.

He is also a bit sparkly with makeup. That comes on days when he doesn’t see me much, so feels the need to burrow his head in mine. And sometimes giving open-mouthed sucks, I mean, kisses.

And honest, I’m really not feeding him Cheetos.



02 2008

Katya, anchorwoman in training

Katya got asked to read a segment on the school’s weekly news show about the value of the month (integrity). We had her read it at home for us and recorded a little video clip.


02 2008

Just thought this site needed some cheer.

Tummy Time? Don't mind if I do! Portraiture by Katya 

Other new photos are up.


02 2008

Happy Birthday, Katya!

Katya has had a banner 6th year. Even her last few weeks have been lots of fun and amazing.

We had a small party for her last night. Later this week she and Emma will have a tea party with a couple friends.

As usual, you can follow the links on the pictures to get more information on each one.

Katya the Pink Panda Katya secretly wonders if her present will eat her Blowing out candles  


02 2008


In trying to decide what to make of the various places I update and write, assigned Tryptophantastic (and, which just points here) the role of being the family blog. I’ve been writing up anecdotes on a locally saved file, uploading pictures to flickr, etc., but then have to repeat myself to every family member who wants to hear how we’re doing.

So there will be more content here again, just might be more personal and family-oriented. If you’re interested in following my links, hobbies, academic pursuits, etc., my tumblr page is being assigned that role, and that also will hopefully be updated and refined soon.

I also hope that as more family and friends start reading and/or come back, they’ll leave some input, since that form of “conversation” is about all we sometimes get with you.



02 2008

Career Matchmaking, or Otherwise Entitled Why I Like Working From Home

After seeing a link for a career matchmaking test on Rebecca’s blog, I’m not sure what to make of my future.

1. Taxidermist
2. Massage Therapist
3. Welder
4. Tilesetter
5. Boilermaker
6. Pet Groomer
7. Security Systems Technician
8. Criminologist
9. Sign Maker
10. Electrician

Aside from being utterly depressing, these results are just…strange. I’m pretty sure I put “meh” on the questions about using tools. I don’t even get a scientific career until Podiatrist at #20 (unless you count Prosthetist / Orthotist at #14, which I’m pretty sure has never been anyone’s dream job).

You can be similarly befuddled! Directions: Go to Enter nycareers as the username and landmark as the password. Take the “Career Matchmaker” survey. Post the top ten results.


09 2007

The opposite of tall and dark, but still full of mystery

As many of you know, a couple weeks ago I started getting some strange email from a Met Onaplane with a throwaway Yahoo email, that I initially believed to be from a real life stalker (of sorts). His first email, while rather polite, invited me to a message board and primarily felt creepy because he was claiming to be someone who had sat next to me on the flight to London (where I neither gave an email nor a name)! However, the tale continued… Read the rest of this entry →


07 2007

For those who don’t actually like eating cabbage

It’s amazing how much fun you (and those much younger than you) can get out of a purple cabbage. I sort of glaze over the “common” science experiments, dismissing them as blasé, but they aren’t blasé when you’ve never seen them before (aka, are 5 years old)!

First we just had fun dying scraps of cotton fabric in our cabbage dye, but the real fun was what came after pouring out cups of the liquid (a pH indicator). First we determined our knowns. Katya and Emma knew lemon juice was sour (though we had to taste it numerous times to be sure), and when we put that in our cabbage juice, it turned pink. Great, pink is an acid! (We also talked about acids yesterday when discussing Vitamin C). Then we tried baking soda, though I wasn’t so cruel as to have them taste it, so that was our blue and blue-green (the linked article has a color guide for determining actual pH based on the color, but pH was just a little advanced for 3- and 5-year olds). We did a couple others, tasting and “measuring” vinegar and Squirt soda, for example, but when Mom gets bored, then the kids must get to mix everything willy-nilly just because. Oh, and did I mention how wonderful everything is when it fizzes too?

So now the only question is if we’ll be able to tie-dye our original cabbage-dyed fabric with lemon juice and baking soda.


07 2007

Katya and Emma Snippets

I hope to write up some of the highlights of our trip to London, especially those parts that aren’t covered by photos we took (which aren’t all uploaded to flickr yet). But in the meantime, I present some amusing kid stories I’ve been hoarding.

Katya and Emma march into the kitchen, shouting “Katya is 5! Katya is 5!” Upon closer examination, Katya is waving a popsicle stick sign that said “Katya is 5” where the “s” is backwards. Adorable.

From the more cringe-inducing department, Emma has long been obsessed with hair and eye color (most likely because everyone she meets instantly comments on her blond hair). On at least two occasions, she’s bounced over to me after meeting a new (black) child and announced loudly, “That’s my friend with black hair!” More cringe-inducing because I think she’s going to say “black…skin” and then have a million people stare at me as if I’m teaching my kid weird things.

Katya muses about how to spell “spoon.” “How do you spell ‘foon’? Hmmm… F?” (Yes, she has trouble with her sp and related sounds.)

This is no longer an isolated incident, but I did write down Katya praying “Thank you for postmans, and librarians.” She has since been thankful for such things as “the earth, which You created a long, long, long, long, long, long, long, long, long time ago. That’s a lot of longs.” I guess I should be happy that she doesn’t have a prayer formula.


05 2007