Sunday, March 30, 2008


I am finally able to breathe from my left nostril.

Arda was sick Monday - Friday.

Tunca got sent home from school on Thursday with a fever.

My nose plugged up on Thursday as well.

Burak is in the living room sleeping now.

Go away sickos. Go away germs.

Friday, March 28, 2008

Ever changing taste in music - a.k.a. vaddafak?

Do you laugh at middle aged white man blasting rap music from their convertibles? Well, that's a bit out of the ordinary in İstanbul anyways, but it's the notion. I've always thought it was weird. Then I find myself listening to Eminem of all people (no, not because of the kids) and these days, enjoying SOAD and Steriogram immensely. As usual my brother thinks I'm nuts (and my taste in music stinks) yet the boys are pleasantly surprised. It must be a passing phase that goes along with my hair style - the "tamer" it looks, the "lamer" my music taste gets, the longer/wilder it is, the stranger.

Here's "Just Like You" - and the guy REALLY needs a haircut:

Speaking of hair, right now I hate my hairdresser for chopping 4 inches off my hair! I just wanted it to look healthy dammit!

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Yelling at other people's children.

It's the worst thing a parent can do, in my opinion.

But I had to do it today. Bad mama.

After "holding it" for nearly a year and a half, I yelled at someone else's child.

When kids play in our backyard, all kinds of fights break out. Someone refuses to get the ball from the garden next door, someone cheats while playing hide and seek, another calls someone a "baby" (oh that's the biggest fight starter - like a box of matches thrown into the fireplace!) and I never ever interfere - I just let Arda deal with whatever he faces that day. That's how kids grow up. That's how they "toughen" up. That's what everyone says.

But when you reach a point where a bully repeatedly hurts your child, not only verbally, but also physically, I have to draw a line. A big line that includes yelling at that bully. And boy, a year and a half worth of "holding it in" resulted in me screaming at the top of my voice to an 11 year old. After seeing the whole thing take place right in front of my eyes, my son came home crying, I called the other kid and said "I don't care what happened, you have NO right to hit my son, you have NO right to kick him, and NO right to try and suffocate him and if it EVER happens again, I will do whatever you do to him right back at you, and believe me, you really don't want that. You are older and stronger than him, but I am older and stronger than you." Then I slammed the door at his face.

I'm terrible person and a worse mother. I should have done what I have been doing for the past year and a half - talk to Arda about what happened, explain to him that bullying and hurting people is bad, and he is a better person for just coming home and not hitting back etc etc etc. After being beaten up.

But the look on his face after I slammed the door was pure relief - and I could tell that even if it's the wrong way to show your child you support him in his daily conflicts, threatening the bully made him feel somewhat safer and more cared for.

After this whole ordeal, three of us sat down for dinner and Tunca was trying to cheer Arda up. He kept trying to give him a sticker and spit out his food to make his brother smile. It was way too cute. And moving. The spitting part was disgusting.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008


I love the mayhem in luggage claim areas in airports. A recent terrifying experience I've had was this: while trying to get the boys to sit still (yeah, right, they've been sitting still for hours!) I was frantically having day-nightmares (what's the word for that?) that a stranger would mistake my suitcases with his/hers and I would be stuck with someone elses bags minus all the stuff I meticulously packed. And believe me, I really packed - two separate suitcases for 4 people for 8 days, three hotels, skiing etc. So the thought of losing our stuff wasn't what freaked me out, but the thought of having to go through the whole packing process and not getting anything good out of it did.

Someone found a somewhat applicable solution to ease fears such as mine. It's not a phobia. Really.

My favorite is "you won't look good in my clothes." He hee.

They're very cute and available for purchase from Bright & Bold - but when everyone buys them I would be left alone with my (no matter how baseless) fears of mistaken suitcases. Again, it's not a phobia. And it will never happen to me.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008


I don't want to become one of "those" women.

You know, the kind who quits her job after marrying (or first kid), then starts these hobby courses when the kids are off to nursery school. Wait! I am one of "those!"

I found a pottery studio when I first came back to İstanbul - it was not so far from where I lived and gave me a safe, quiet place to work on a pottery wheel by myself.

But dang - it was very expensive. Even if they included the firing and glaze (which they didn't) the price was too much - for no taking lessons and just fiddling around with clay. If I thought I had a minuscule amount of talent in the area, I really would not care about forking over the money.

Mind you, the peace of mind I had during those hours were priceless (yeah, I know it sounds like a MasterCard commercial).

If only I could fire up something like this:

Or this:

These were done by Whitney Smith - and available for purchase. She also has a blog - and believe me - she deserves being "getting fanned with palm fronds by the palace slaves .. uhm interns" :)

I will, one day, post pictures of the stuff I made...

Saturday, March 8, 2008

Anybody Out There?

Does anyone wonder who reads this blog? I know two people (hi dad!) (hey ahu!) do so.

The intellectual wonders.

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Aching Sadness

I had a computer typed letter sized paper on my corkboard while I was going to high school in San Diego. It said: "Deep under the aching sadness that will pass in time I feel I have lost something, I know not what, I know not why."

For some reason, I took a line from Fitzgerald's This Side of Paradise and changed it and hung it up where I could see it every day. Right above my desk, where I spent lots of time. Lots. And I would stare at it in between integrals and chemistry equations and such. Later on, I went to college and hung it up on the same spot in every single dorm room I stayed.

I want to think that the sadness and the loss part effected me so much that I had to have it right in front of me to reflect upon. Quite possibly, a part of the reason was that. But the echo and the flow of the words had a much more profound validity that even though its meaning lost its significance years ago, the words remain in my thoughts and I find myself trying to do something with them. Put them to use. Any suggestions?

"And deep under the aching sadness that will pass in time, Rosalind feels that she has lost something, she knows not what, she knows not why."

Modern Furniture for Kids

When we bought Arda's crib in late 1999, there wasn't a variety affordable AND available modern nursery furniture even in NYC. When he outgrew the crib (and Tunca was well on his way into this world) we just went to a regular furniture store in İstanbul and bought him a twin bed and matching bookcases etc. They look pretty modern.

But this collection from Oeff blew my mind! Check them out:

This is a regular twin bed, made in Latvia. The price is around 800$ (not very affordable). It also comes in white. I am not sure about "sterile" looking rooms for kids - and I have a feeling no matter how "clean" the furniture lines look, at least my kids will make them look complicated and even dirty in no time.

But who is to say all kids' rooms should look alike - plane and space shuttle and boat themes for boys, butterflies and roses for girls. I for one looked around for a while and even considered having a carpenter custom make a bedroom set for the boys - alas I am too lazy to even consider thinking about that not to mention drawing them. IKEA wasn't available in Turkey, then either, BTW.

I am, however, sure that if we had the modern furniture for the kids, they definitely would be a conversation piece - mostly behind my back :)