I'm Liz, and I'm a librarian (duh)

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Tiny little victories

So, we're a couple of weeks into our gluten-free lifestyle and I am happy to report that I am no longer reduced to literal tears every time I walk into the grocery store (only sometimes), and we have even survived our first birthday party. The birthday party was for Ms. 5-year-old herself, and there was a lot of angst-ing, at least on my part, as to whether to subject all our little guests to gluten-free fare, or just have some separate things for the birthday girl and hope no one else wanted any of what she was having. Interestingly, most of the books about parenting kids with celiac disease recommend against letting other kids try the GF stuff--some of the products aren't so good and you don't want your GF kid feeling bad because other kids think their food is gross. But I went for the compromise--Ella doesn't like birthday cake anyway, never has, but she understands that people expect it at a party, so we ordered a regular sheet cake (Disney princesses) for candles, etc., and then I made some GF cookies, brownies and cupcakes, plus we had vanilla Dibs, which just happen to be GF. Success! I am happy to report that all 14 of the girls were happy with their choice of snack, and probably only half the kids chose the cake. None of the kids had any idea that the other snacks were any different, and I can personally bear witness to the fact that the brownies and chocolate chip cookies were pretty awesome. We had a split decision on the cupcakes--my brother-in-law and I thought they were pretty awful, while my husband didn't think they were so bad. If you're keeping score: Betty Crocker 2, Bob's Red Mill zip. AND! We spread the word about Dibs, which many of our guests (including the moms) had never had before and were totally into. They are fully a staple in our house.

In other news, I just finished Academy 7 by Anne Osterlund, which I read at the recommendation of one of my colleagues--she is suggesting it for our Twilight read-alike/fantasy booklist. I liked it as a romance, it definitely has more heat than Twilight, but that's not too difficult to achieve. I'll admit that as sci-fi it's not my usual genre of choice, but the tech/space stuff was pretty easy to forget as the story progressed. Also, I just started Douglas Coupland's Generation A--I'm preparing for my trip to Vancouver next week and getting giddy. I'm not that far in yet, but I'm noticing an inordinate amount of Simpsons references...not sure what that's all about.

Monday, January 18, 2010

So this is a pretty big news day--the ALSC awards were announced this morning! And it looks like readers across the country were right--When You Reach Me was indeed the Newbery winner! Now I really do have to read it--despite my best intentions, it just didn't get done this weekend. I was also excited to see that Flash Burnout got the Morris award--that I did finish, and I thought it was great. It's always interesting to see authors who are probably my age giving props to all the music of our youth. Jerry Pinkney's The Lion and the Mouse was certainly spectacular as well (Caldecott winner) so in my opinion justice has been done. I do need to get my hands on Going Bovine (Printz winner) now as well--it was on my list all summer and then all of a sudden it wasn't. Ah well, now it's back. I need to watch Libba Bray in a cow costume on youtube to remind me. I started reading How do you Spell G-E-E-K? on Saturday, but it's short, and then I play catch up. I spent this last year in a post-partum fog, at least for the first 6 months. Well, the whole thing, really. And, as a result, I haven't read a fraction of what I should have. But, new year, fresh start, right?

As I said, this was indeed a big news day. For about a month now we have suspected that my daughter has celiac disease, and today we got confirmation that she does indeed. On the one hand, I'm kind of relieved, because once it became apparent that she had something, better celiac disease than any of the other possible diagnoses. And once it's under control she'll feel better, she'll grow, her quality of life will definitely improve. The down side is, this makes her susceptible to all sorts of other way worse diseases if she can't control it (I'm thinking rebellious teenage years here, wanting to drink beer because everyone else is and who brings wine to a keg party??), and it's hard to explain to a child who turned 5 two weeks ago that she can't have any of the foods she likes. She's smart, but she's stubborn--we have a long road ahead of us here.

I am going to have to make a conscious effort here, to go against my own personal inclinations and be positive for her. In that vein, we were totally gluten-free today. It wasn't the most exciting day, menu-wise, but we did it. So tomorrow we'll do it again. And if anyone has any gluten-free recipes for a picky child addicted to ravioli that aren't prohibitively expensive, then shoot them my way!

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Liz 2.0?

So this is embarrassing--it has been almost exactly a year since my last post, and before that it was a pretty long time too. There has been a lot going on in my life in the last couple of years, and I was leaning toward throwing in the towel, blogwise, but some events over the past few weeks have got me reconsidering. I'm still a librarian, that much hasn't changed, and I'm still a mom, but rather than have me consistently complaining about how my commute is terrible (it is) and my house is a mess (it really is) and how my husband and I are so tired most days that we barely have the energy to talk about anything except the logistics of how to get through the next day (we are), I want to try to give myself a little focus. So I'm proposing a fresh start and maybe an expanded focus--I still want to talk about books and maybe stuff going on in libraryland, but I think my life is just going to have to seep in here too. Plus, I spent a lot of money on my English degree; I should be writing something other than grocery lists and the minutes from the last staff meeting! Although I give fair warning--grocery lists may indeed play a huge role here in the not too distant future... I also would like to try to give myself a minimum goal of one post a month, maybe a maximum of one a week--I'll start small and see how I go. Call it a new year's resolution!
So here's what I'm reading: Flash Burnout by L.K. Madigan (teen), The Help by Kathryn Stockett (my token grown-up book), When You Reach Me by Rebecca Stead (hopefully will finish before Monday's award announcements), and finally, Walter Wick's A Drop of Water is currently in heavy rotation at bedtime. Also various books/pamphlets/websites about gluten-free diets, as my daughter was just diagnosed with celiac disease this week, and will likely be a couple of weeks before we get an appointment with a dietician (hence the grocery list talk). I'd love to hear what anyone else is reading, I'm always looking for something good!