Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Wordless Wednesday: Play

Playing with her jungle friends
Sorry I didn't post yesterday- I was sick.  Sinus nastiness.  Yuck.  I actually had the chance to sleep most of the day, though, so I feel a lot better.

Was that too many words for a 'Wordless Wednesday' post?

Much love,
The Geeks

Monday, April 28, 2014

She's Not Wearing That.

Baby clothes.

I love them, I really do.  Chief's wardrobe is probably twice as large as it should be because I can't stop myself from buying her stuff- and neither can her friends and family!  But as much as I love all things tiny, there are some baby clothes that are off-limits for our little girl.

1. Anything that says "spoiled" or "diva".

via Toys R Us
 You can't spoil a baby.  If I nurse her every time she's fussy or pick her up every time she cries, I'm not "spoiling" her, I'm tending to her needs- her need for nourishment and her need for comfort.  However, you can spoil a toddler or a preschooler.  You can buy her every toy she demands or fall over yourself to provide the cookie she cries over.  And I just don't think it's cute to joke about that kind of attitude.  "Hahaha, she's going to be incapable of taking care of herself as an adult because she's always had everything handed to her!  LOL!  Isn't that adorabe?"

2. Anything that alludes to dating or flirting.

via Kohl's
 She's not even 6 months old yet, why would you talk about her dating?  She might smile at you or otherwise goad you into paying attention to her, but she's not flirting with you- she's an infant!  She's learning how to interact with other human beings and it's exciting for her to hear people talk to her.  But I think what bugs me most about this particular onesie is the idea that you can literally lock up your daughter and prevent her from interacting with boys when she gets older.  Parents that don't let their daughters talk to boys end up being grandparents way, way earlier than they wanted to be.

3. Anything immodest.

via Kohl's
 I don't mean sexually immodest- although I do think it's ridiculous to put a baby girl in a string bikini, especially if you're going to find the same garment inappropriate on a teenage girl- I mean lacking humility.  It's one thing to tell your baby girl that she's the prettiest little girl in the whole world- it's another to have her proclaiming it to the world herself.  Would you want your 6-year-old saying "I know," instead of "Thank you," when somebody compliments her?  I knew plenty of pretty girls in high school who knew they were pretty- as in, they were obsessed with their appearances and used their good looks to their advantage.  I don't want to encourage that kind of behavior in our little girl, and slogans like this just play up that attitude but, again, people seem to think that it's cute or funny.

4. Animal print.

via Kohl's
  Ok so I'm actually a little lenient on this one.  A friend bought her a jumper dress in zebra print which she's worn at least twice (which is a big deal around here when most things are only worn once and then outgrown) and another friend bought her some cheetah print bibs which are adorable.  I think my aversion to animal print baby clothes stems from those that are ugly, like the one pictured above, and those with the word DIVA printed in sparkly letters across the chest.

5. Obviously anything UVa.  Or Auburn.  Or, you know, just blue and orange together at all.

via Cavalier Team Shop
 Ew.  Gross.

What kinds of baby clothes make you cringe?

Much love,
The Geeks

Friday, April 25, 2014

Oh, Internet... {50}

Woah, I've done 50 of these now.  Crazy.  I've been doing this blogging thing for a long-ish time.

And this has been a long-ish week.

And the internet has been awesome, as usual.  Just take a look:

if we ever have a boy... // via Make It and Love It
muffin tin omelets // via Confections of a Foodie Bride

truth.  // via xkcd
ahahaha Chief needs this... // via Think Geek
DIY embellished Keds- I especially love the spikes! // via the ModCloth blog

The motto of the working mother.  I wish I could have the sort of work-life balance this woman has.  I would much rather be "a mom who occasionally works outside the home".

What awesomeness happened on your internet this week?

Much love,
The Geeks

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Throwback Thursday: Love From Hershey

Love is sweet / 6 May 2012 // *personal photo*
I can't believe this was 2 years ago!  We spent the spring and summer of 2012 visiting various amusement parks nearby with our friends as "practice for Disney" aka an excuse to ride roller coasters.  Protip: Hershey Park is EMPTY the first weekend in May and the weather is perfect- cool enough for a light jacket!  No lines + beautiful weather = awesome amusement park experience.

Share a link to your Throwback Thursday pictures in the comments!

Much love,
The Geeks

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Wordless Wednesday: Characters On Parade!

Jessie and Bullseye during a Pixar parade at DHS // *personal photo*
Today I'm linking up over at Focused on the Magic for the Wordless Wednesday Disney blog hop!  Today's theme is Characters On Parade.  Click the button below to join in on the blog hop!

Much love,
The Geeks

Baby and Me: Sailing Stripes

Dress: Carter's
Sandals: Carter's

Dress: ModCloth
Sandals: ModCloth

I am so ready for summer!

Much love,
The Geeks

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Answer Me This: He is Risen. He is Risen indeed.

Hey folks!  I've found another link-up to join over at the wonderful Catholic All Year.  Each week, she posts some random questions and gets people to link up their answers!  This should be fun :)

1. What did you and your family wear to Mass on Easter Sunday?

I am apparently incapable of capturing a good family photo, but here's the best one of yesterday's photo shoot:

*personal photo*
Saturday I took Chief to Reston Town Center, armed with a hefty Anthropologie gift card, in the hopes of snagging a super-last-minute Easter dress for me.  And then I remembered- I can't wear dresses right now.  There are very few nursing-friendly silhouettes out there- fewer still that are flattering to my short, chubby post-partum body- so I had to go the skirt-and-top route.  It's a cute outfit, but I just couldn't help but feel like I was late for a meeting or something all day, or that I was about to go give a briefing.

2. Easter Bunny: thumbs up or thumbs down?

Thumbs up.  I know it's popular right now for Christian parents to take all the fun out of childhood, but I figure it's nice to have a scapegoat for when you want to buy your kids presents that are either expensive or exactly what they've been asking for (or otherwise things they don't strictly *need*).  By the time they're old enough to figure out that these magical gift-bearing beings are not real, they're not spoiled and don't expect Mommy and Daddy to buy the super awesome toy that they just have to have right now.  We're not going to teach Chief and her future siblings that the point of Easter is to wake up and find baskets full of candy and toys, but we are going to teach them that Easter is a celebration.  And Mommy celebrates with Reese's eggs.

3. Do you prefer to celebrate holidays at your own house or at someone else's house?

Since Chief arrived, we've celebrated every holiday here in our little home.  (That's because we haven't traveled at all since she got here, period.)  Everyone converged on our house for Thanksgiving (and we went to Ruby Tuesday, which was weird, but at least there were no dirty dishes!), and we spent Christmas and Easter here by ourselves, just the three of us.  Since we're still figuring out how to be a family, it's been really nice to come up with our own traditions all by ourselves without the need to play host and have a clean house and cook a fancy meal.  It was really weird spending Christmas without my parents, though, for the first time ever.

4. What is your favorite kind of candy?

Reese's eggs.  'Nuff said.

5. Do you like video games?

I like video games...but I'm not very good at them.  Growing up, we never had a game system because- I kid you not- my parents said that they were afraid they would spend all their time playing it.  What?  Apparently, when they were dating, they would often commandeer my uncle's Nintendo for hours on end.  We had Game Boys eventually, but I never found the cramped fingers and the tiny screen that much fun.  So by the time I started dating Mr. Geek in college and he wanted to teach me to play Halo, I had no video game skills to speak of; I made it through an entire match with 0 kills.  We have a Wii (not a Wii U because that's stupid) and an XBOX 360 (with a dead optical drive, so it's basically our Netflix Machine) with Kinect currently in our house.  Mr. Geek is what you might call a serious gamer; since the optical drive died on the XBOX, he's been stuck with XBOX Live games (he downloads each month's free game).  He's always up for a round of Super Mario Bros, however, and after playing through the whole game several times, I'm finally pretty good at it!

6. Do you speak another language?

I got a 3 on the French AP exam senior year of high school.  (Out of 5.  A "passing" score is a 3, 4 or 5- that is, most colleges will offer you credit for those scores.  Virginia Tech's College of Engineering just wanted you to take 3 years of a foreign language in high school in order to place out of language, so I didn't need the credit anyway.)  If I get bored at work, I pull up French news sites to see how much I can read.  (I'm talking really, really bored.)  Does that count?

Go answer these questions on your blog and add yourself to the link up!

Much love,
The Geeks

Friday, April 18, 2014

Good Friday

Veronica, St Peter's Basilica / 16 September 2012 // *personal photo*
We're going to Stations of the Cross tonight because we won't make it to the 3pm Good Friday service.  I urge you to find some time to spend with our Lord today, too.  And even as we suffer through this Passion, we can look to the glory of Easter in just a couple of days.

Much love,
The Geeks

ETA: Everyone- including (especially?) Chief- is pretty exhausted in this house, so we had to skip Stations tonight.  :/

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Oh, Internet... {49}

Somehow, I feel more rested today than I normally do on Thursdays.  And somehow, the internet was more awesome this week than it normally is.  Take a look!

I cannot WAIT until Chief is old enough for toys like these! // via Think Geek
via Cheezburger
What do you pack for a day in the Disney parks? // via A Pinch of Pixie Dust
 Allie at Everyday Adventures blogged about our culture's obsession with infidelity in love stories.  Why can't we cheer for a happily married couple, for once? 

Kendra at Catholic All Year blogged at Carrots for Michaelmas about becoming a family of prayer.  She makes a really good point- it's important to try to maintain your prayer life, rather than waiting for the perfect moment to pray, because that perfect moment may never come!

7 ways to support a breastfeeding coworker.   Hint: snarky comments about productivity is NOT one of them.

Being a mom is hard.  Being a dad is hard, too.  Why must it be a competition?  (Also read the sequel to this post.  I agree- parenthood is more joy than suffering, though I realize we're still at the beginning of this journey.)

What awesome things happened on your internet this week?

Much love,
The Geeks

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Wordless Wednesday: Hokies

watching VT vs UVa on Thanksgiving weekend 2013 // *personal photo*
Much love,
The Geeks

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

10 Reasons Why Top Gear is Awesome

Have you ever watched Top Gear?  It's an awesome show on the BBC where 3 hilarious guys review the latest cars and...get up to some other crazy antics.  Here are 10 reasons, in no particular order, why you should watch it!

1. They redesigned the motorhome:
2. They get creative when there's no air conditioning:

3. They made gin and tonics while driving around the North Pole:

4. They figured out how to better drive the Porsche 911 GT3 (you know, in case it catches fire):

5. Mr. Bean was once the Star in the Reasonably-Priced Car:

6. They drive around in amazing supercars, like the McLaren P1, for our entertainment:

7. They go on safaris and make miraculous discoveries:

8. They sent a Mini off a ski jump:
 9. They are the kings of "don't try this at home":

10. The Stig:

So what about you- do you watch Top Gear?  What's your favorite part?

Much love,
The Geeks

all images via Top Gear on Tumblr

Monday, April 14, 2014

Change ALL the Passwords! A Brief Overview of Heartbleed

I'm going to go all technical on you for a second, but please don't skip this post.  Also, I'm not actually a programmer (I just play one on TV) so if I get something slightly wrong or don't explain something clearly enough, PLEASE CORRECT ME!  (Yes, I am actually telling you to let me know if I'm wrong about something, because I'd like this post to serve as a resource for people curious about this bug.  An accurate resource.)  Ok so here goes:

What is Heartbleed?

To answer that, I need to first answer this:

What is OpenSSL?

The OpenSSL Project is a collaborative effort to develop a robust, commercial-grade, full-featured, and Open Source toolkit implementing the Secure Sockets Layer (SSL v2/v3) and Transport Layer Security (TLS v1) protocols as well as a full-strength general purpose cryptography library managed by a worldwide community of volunteers that use the Internet to communicate, plan, and develop the OpenSSL toolkit and its related documentation.
Secure Sockets Layer and Transport Layer Security protocols are, simply put, methods for keeping information secure on the internet.  SSL/TLS provides an encrypted connection between a user and a website, so that sensitive information- including usernames, passwords, and any other data the user and the website may be exchanging- is not viewable by anyone who should not view it.  You know that the website you're connecting to is using ssl if the url starts with https instead of just http.  You will also see a little lock icon just to the left of the url.  In general, if it's a website that you log into, it probably uses ssl.

If you're setting up a website, you can buy an ssl toolkit- or, you can use OpenSSL, the open source implementation.

Is Heartbleed a virus?

No, it's not, contrary to what your friendly neighborhood morning radio program may have said, or any other media source who wants to sound smart but has no idea what they're talking about.

What is it, then?

Two years ago, an updated version of OpenSSL was released.  Within the update was a small change to an otherwise trivial line of code which ended up being not so trivial at all.  This bug in the code allows an attacker to view information that would otherwise be protected.

Why is this so scary?

It is estimated that 2/3's of the internet uses OpenSSL.  This means that pretty much everything is vulnerable to an attack.  Exploiting the Heartbleed vulnerability could reveal everything- usernames, passwords, bank accounts, contents of emails, even private crypto keys- to those who are up to no good.  And it's a very, very easy attack.  And- here's the kicker- if an attacker exploits the vulnerability, you would have no idea.  Well, okay, the website would have no idea.  If your bank account suddenly had no money, you'd know something had happened.  But you wouldn't know how they did it, and the website being attacked wouldn't know it was being attacked.

So how does the attack work?

from xkcd
 This comic explains it beautifully.  Basically, an attacker can't grab specific information- it's just whatever happens to be in the server's memory at the time.  But the vulnerability allows an attacker to obtain up to 64kb of information from the server- information that should be protected.

So should I change all of my passwords?

If the website in question has not yet patched itself, then changing your password basically does nothing, because an attacker could, potentially, grab your new password.

Which passwords should I change?

Mashable has an incredible list.  Ask them.

And that's about it.  Obviously I didn't go in depth here, because my intention was just to correct some things you may have read and put the accurate things in plain ol' English.

Sources for this post:
The OpenSSL Project
Ars Technica

Much love,
The Geeks

Friday, April 11, 2014

Faithful Friday: Patience

I won't pretend like Chief is patient all the time.

If we're out in public and she's hungry, and Mr. Geek isn't with us to distract her, and I have to wrestle with the stupid nursing cover and then unbutton or lift up my shirt and then hold her in the right position when I can't really see her face and then unclip my nursing tank top and then get her close enough to latch all while holding her with one hand because there are no pillows around...she gets impatient.  She starts to whine- cry even, if she's tired or really, really hungry- but all is forgiven when she's finally able to latch.

So, yes, she's 5 months old, and when she needs something- to be fed, to be changed, to be held- she needs it now.

But there are times when she is patient- exceedingly so.

Like when I can't decide what she should wear, and I pull multiple onesies and skirts and leggings from her closet and hem and haw over the combinations, and she just lies there in her crib, staring at me and occasionally giggling if I ask her which one she likes best.  She's comfortable and I'm talking to her, so we could do this all day.

Or when it's time for her monthly photo, and I prop her up on the sofa and then fiddle with the shutter speed and aperture on my camera, then snap a few hundred (I'm not even kidding) pictures before I'm satisfied that I've captured a good shot.  She might stare at me with her eyebrows raised like I'm a crazy person for going to such lengths to get her to smile, or she might get bored and start lifting up the hem of her skirt to put it in her mouth, but she doesn't fuss.  And she will smile if I hold the camera away from my face and let her see me smiling back at her. 

tolerating my non-stop photography, though she thinks I'm crazy // *personal photo*
I get bored very easily.  This is especially true at work- I have to work on multiple tasks in parallel, instead of finishing one before moving on to the next, so that I can jump from one to the other in order to stay motivated.  And if I am someone's guinea pig for something, whatever it may be, I'm not always the most forgiving subject.  Let's just say that patience is not my greatest virtue.

Maybe I should practice sitting still and listening to someone else talk for a while.  (Or take my picture.)

What have you learned from your infant lately?

Much love,
The Geeks

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Oh, Internet... {48}

Our baby girl is 5 months old today!!  What???  Why is she growing so fast?

Another thing that happened this week?  The internet was awesome.  Just take a look!

I'm sure I'll need this book in a couple of years... // via Think Geek

I mean, it's funny, but it's not funny... // via xkcd

I need to find time to make one of these! // by Grandma's Chalkboard via Make It and Love It
Emily shared some hilarious sh!t her kid says.  I cannot WAIT until Chief starts talking...

A Jennuine Life shared this tutorial on how to match patterns.  Super helpful!

What awesomeness happened on your internet this week?

Much love,
The Geeks

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Wordless Wednesday: Retro Disney Side

family Disney trip when I was 14; I'm in the black tank top.  Remind me to mock BabySis for the fanny pack // *photo courtesy my parents*

Today I'm linking up over at Focused on the Magic for the Wordless Wednesday Disney blog hop!  Today's theme is Retro Disney Side.  Click the button below to join in on the blog hop!

Much love,
The Geeks

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Culinary Adventures: Chili Mac

I actually made this macaroni and cheese dish (with chili!) about a month ago and then forgot to blog about it!  It's really delicious and I'm thinking about making it again soon, even though the weather is much warmer now.

*personal photo*
Chili Mac
adapted from this other macaroni recipe I made that one time

-1 lb macaroni (I used these cute little wheels)
-1 lb ground pork
-2 tsp chili powder
-1 tsp garlic powder
-1 8oz can kidney beans
-3 Tbsp butter
-3 Tbsp flour
-3 C milk
-1 bay leaf
-8 oz sharp cheddar, shredded

-3 Tbsp butter
-1 C breadcrumbs

-Preheat the oven to 350F.  Bring a pot of salted water to a boil.  Cook to just under al dente according to the directions on the box.

-Meanwhile, season the ground pork with the chili powder, garlic powder, salt, and pepper.  Brown in a saute pan until fully cooked.  Drain the kidney beans and add to the meat.

-Melt the butter in a large saucepan, but don't let it brown.  Whisk in the flour to create a roux- don't let it get lumpy!  Stir in the milk and add the bay leaf.  Let it simmer for 10 minutes, then remove the bay leaf.  Stir in the cheese and whisk until it's melted.

-When the pasta has finished cooking, drain it and mix it with the meat mixture.  Fold in the cheese sauce, then pour the whole thing into a greased 2 quart baking dish.

-Make the topping by melting the butter and tossing with the breadcrumbs.  Pat the topping over the whole casserole and bake for 30 minutes.  Let it sit for 5 minutes before serving.  Top with extra cheddar cheese.


What's your favorite mac 'n' cheese recipe?

Much love,
The Geeks

Monday, April 7, 2014

Baby and Me: Jeans and Tshirt

T-shirt: Disney Store
Jean leggings: Carter's
Sneakers: Converse

T-shirt: Disney Store
Jean leggings: Old Navy
Sneakers: Converse

I know I said I'd never actually dress to match Chief exactly...but I might break that rule for this outfit.  Look at the tiny Chucks!

Much love,
The Geeks

Friday, April 4, 2014

Faithful Fridays: Love

We say the words I love you an awful lot in this house- I think maybe Chief has heard them more often than her own name since the day she was born.  And Mr. Geek and I are really good about saying it to each other all the time- every phone conversation ends like this:

"I love you!"

"I love you, too."

"I love you so much!"

"I love you so much."

It's like a script we have memorized- the words just come naturally.  I call him every morning when I get into work to tell him to have a good day, and I'm sure my coworkers probably gag at the sap, but whatever, it's our thing.

On top of telling her every moment, it's easy to show Chief that we love her.  We feed her, dress her, play with her, keep her clean, keep her healthy, keep her comfortable.  (In short, we're her parents.)  And though she can't tell us, she shows us that she loves us, too.

When I pick her up from daycare, she greets me with the biggest smile.  When Mr. Geek is holding her and she starts to get sleepy, she buries her face in his chest, nuzzling in close.  When I put her up on my shoulder to burp her after she eats, she wraps her arm around me and gives me a hug. 

She tells us that she loves us by rewarding even the slightest glance with a wide, toothless grin and a twinkle of genuine joy in her bright eyes.

4 month photo shoot // *personal photo*
It's all well and good to tell someone you love them, but the important thing is to show them.  As I constantly strive to be a good wife, I need to remember that sometimes the best way to express my love for my husband is to tell him how happy he makes me.  I'm blessed to be married to such a romantic man.  He brings home "just because" flowers all the time; he volunteers to entertain Chief so I can take a nice long shower; he'll put my feet in his lap and massage them, unbidden, after I've had a hard day.  Me, I'm more of a words person- I'm good at telling him how I feel, but maybe I'm less good at the actions.  It's like my creative writing teacher always said- show, don't tell.  (Well, okay, telling is necessary, too, but it doesn't mean anything unless you show.)

What have you learned from your infant lately?

Much love,
The Geeks

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Oh, Internet...{47}

Another week is drawing to a close!  We had another set of grandparents visiting this week, playing with Chief and taking care of us (and dinner!  That's been the best part!).  I haven't spent a lot of time on the internet this week, but here are the most awesome things I managed to find:

I love these DiY notebooks from A Beautiful Mess!
hahaha // image via Cheezburger
What are we supposed to do with kids?

A Pinch of Pixie Dust shared a review of two family suites in the Art of Animation resort.  I think I've decided where we're staying next time...

And in the realm of awesome April Fools' jokes:

Joy the Baker shared some (100% accurate) tips for how to be the best food blogger of all.

The Kitchn shared an awesome new kitchen product- the Le CreusAid Stand Mixer!

What were your favorite April Fools' jokes on your internet this week?

Much love,
The Geeks

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Wordless Wednesday: Lucky

Playing around on St Patrick's Day // *personal photo*
Much love,
The Geeks

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Baby and Me: Polka Dots

Dress: H&M
Shoes: Keds

Dress: ModCloth
Shoes: Keds

No, I wouldn't actually dress Chief in an outfit to match mine exactly.  (Color coordinate, yes, but match?  No.)  That doesn't mean it isn't fun to shop for chic ensembles that look good in regular AND mini size, though!

Much love,
The Geeks

side note: this is an actual new series for the blog, not an April Fools' joke.  I'm not so good at pranks, so I decided not to bother.  But happy birthday, Fred and George!