Tuesday, March 22, 2011

This is what I think!

I think that when a man diets, it should not be so immediately obvious that he’s done so in the way of saggy pants, nicer skin and a thinner face. Furthermore, I think that said man should be banned from talking about how easy it is once you just put your mind to it. AND ALSO, he should not offer anyone tips of any kind.

I think that if you are told several times to prepare for work travel in a specific month or quarter or whatever, and it continually gets moved or cancelled that you should somehow be compensated. Not because you have arranged your schedule or other aspects of your life, but because you wanted a break from the mundane already.

I think that having part of a “Grandparents Celebration” include walking laps around the school to raise funds for a hospital is a stupid assed idea. For one thing, our active grandparent can’t even walk to the bathroom anymore, let alone laps around the school with my kids. This makes them feel bad—they will not have a grandparent there next week. In addition, I refuse to contribute any money to this hospital whose emergency room staff were such assholes when Lucy was a baby with suspected meningitis. They can’t have my money. And so my kids will go to school without a completed pledge form, and this will likely make them feel bad too.

I think that my BIL has no right to post statuses on Facebook about feeling like “such a dad” after Niece did gymnastics last week. We signed her up, and paid for it, and all he did was drop her off. He left to get his hair cut while I watched her take class.

I think that after 2+ months of washing it only every other day, that my hair should have trained itself to be not greasy on the non wash days.

I think that people should stop having partial feeds and embedded comment forms.

I think that people need to STFU about the weather already. Yes, I died a little upon hearing that we are getting 3-5 inches of snow tomorrow and that the high for the rest of the week is only 29. But do you hear me saying that I need to move? That this is the worst place to live ever? That we only have 2 seasons here? That we are all stupid for sticking around? No. So it is cold here. It snows a lot. By the time January and February roll around, I am as sick of it as the next person. I’m also sick of it being 90 humid degrees come August. But guess what? We don’t have hurricanes here, we don’t have earthquakes, we don’t have tsunamis. It could be a whole lot worse. We have 4 awesome seasons. Seriously. STFU.

What are you thinking today?

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Bullets for the general record

• My mother is supposed to watch the baby today, but she’s had the barfing flu. Although it was mostly out of her system, she asked me to keep Liv home today so she could sufficiently Lysol the place. I wouldn’t have sent her anyway. I can’t deal with any barfing right now-or preferably, ever. And the way Liv picks things up….no. We were staying home regardless. I’m almost considering not going there for my Dad’s birthday on Saturday, but hopefully the pestilence will be gone by then.
• This of course means that I am working upstairs on my laptop today—not unlike working on my laptop in the real office on Thursdays, so I’m not getting much done. We’re watching Olivia.
• Last Thursday, I felt like a cold was coming on and as the day went on, I was achy and feeing feverish, until it went full blown 101 fever and chills and aches in the middle of the night. I felt lame calling in on Friday, since I work at home, but it was necessary. I got the kids on the bus, Hub took Liv to school, and then I slept until 2:30 in the afternoon. I felt a bit better on Saturday but asked Hub to take the girls to gymnastics—there was no way I could handle Mommy and Me. I’m mostly better now, except for an annoying stuffy nose that will not unstuff.
• Yesterday was a Very Bad Day with FIL. I can’t say more. Today is better. My husband deserves an award. I love him.
• I bought an adhesive gun from Amazon last week so that I can make more cards at home. It feels good to be excited about a hobby. And to be friendly with people. And to have plans.
• Lucy and I have been arguing about EVERYTHING lately, which leads me to wonder if it is this hard at 5, what will it be like at, say, 15? Latest ongoing argument? She’d like to dye her hair pink over the summer. And maybe, if I won’t let her do her whole head, could we just do the ends? Then she can have it cut out before school starts again? You guys! She is 5!!! I don’t know where she comes up with these things.
• Last week we got a reminder that we need to secure Liv’s place in the preschool program for next year. Say what now? My baby is not going to preschool already. No. She is not.
• The big kids are off of school tomorrow and I’ve secured a play date for Bud. His friend called and invited himself over last night (which I had to kibosh based on bullet 4 above) so I asked Bud to have the boy put his mother on the phone. That was the point that I somehow invited Bud to their house on Friday. Ugh. I don’t know how to deal with this play date stuff. Shouldn’t the parents call for play dates? I mean really, a couple of 7-year-olds on the phone? Why can’t my kids just be friends with each other. Heh.

Monday, March 14, 2011

How I (really) lost an hour

Hub and I were up late on Saturday, going through his business paperwork so we could give our accountant the right numbers and finally file our taxes. I sorted in to piles of gas, supply and others while we finally started watching season 3 of Breaking Bad, which has been in our TiVo since last March. I kept saying to Hub, “you know, it’s really 11:30 right now…not 10:30” and so on, preparing for the arrival of Daylight Savings Time. I also mentioned in passing that we should change the battery in the smoke/carbon monoxide detector.

At around Midnight (really, 1am) as we were finishing up, the detector started to chirp. We both thought “how weird!!”, assuming that the batteries were dying right as we were supposed to change them. What an odd coincidence, right? So, Hub popped them out and changed them and secured the alarm back to the ceiling.

Chirp. Chirp.

The hell??

We knew they were fresh batteries. Hub rearranged them and shook the alarm a few times. He popped them out and blew inside the unit, ala the old Nintendo fixaroo.

Nothing. Well except for chirps.

Reading the inside of the unit for interpretation of the beeps, we were pretty sure that there wasn’t anything wrong. The beeps, 30 seconds apart, indicated a malfunction. I was starting to get antsy at this point. Our house is small--tiny really--and this is the only smoke alarm we’ve actively maintained over the years (I KNOW!!). It was clearly busted and there was no way I was sleeping without it. I called the 24 hour Walgreens to see if they might have one. They didn’t. Hub ran to the grocery store that is a few minutes from here. They didn’t have one either. He called and I dithered back and forth over whether he should go over to Wal-Mart. He went.

He was home just before 3am (the real 3 now, because we’d skipped the hour) with the exact model we’d already had. All he had to do was twist it in to the base and we were back in business. I was turning the TV off and shutting off the lights while Hub was still examining the instruction booklet. He asked when we’d installed the previous alarm, and I remembered—it was right after Bud was born.

It would seem that these alarms have a 7 year expiration date. And once they’ve been in use for 7 years, they will beep consecutively every 30 seconds, regardless of fresh batteries, or blowing in to their crevices, or any tricks you might have up your sleeve. Smoke detectors expire now! This was information I did not know! And I will definitely never forget. Our new alarm will expire when Bud is 14. Let that sink in: FOURTEEN!

So there is the story of how I was awake to actually ring in DST and skip an hour. Lessons Learned:

1. Mama cannot stay up until 3am anymore. Oh no, she cannot.
2. We should have (and will have) more than one working smoke detector
3. We now know that smoke detectors actually expire.
4. Someday, Bud will be FOURTEEN.

I’m not sure how long it will take me to recover from all of this information.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Not just about Lent

When I was in elementary school and even middle school, it was fun to decide what I was giving up for lent. Something hard, like junk food? Or listening to my NKOTB tapes? Being mean to my brothers? I usually chose the junk food route, which is maybe ironic because this was when I was skinny as a rail and could eat whatever I wanted. And then I would debate with myself…well, chips and salsa are actually pretty healthy. So are crackers and cheese. And so on. But for all intents and purposes, I stuck to it. And on Holy Saturday I would make myself totally sick with the anticipation of gorging myself on chocolate and jelly beans and peep….mmmm, peeps.

When Hub and I were first married, we had an amazing priest at our local church. He not only preached and gave homilies, but he broke things down for us; explained them in a way so that we could really understand the background of things. This is how we came to know the real meaning of Lent, or at least, the way Hub and I believe in it today. It isn’t really about suffering the way Jesus did…though that is a part of it. It is about taking a look at what is harmful in your life; what is causing you stress or problem, and giving it up. Not just for 40 days and 40 night, but really, for life. And for this reason, we typically do not participate in the whole "Lent" thing.

I find that this is a principle we can put to use, even though we’re not as tied to the church as we once were. My kids don’t even know what lent is. We go to church when we can, but we don’t belong to one anymore. Liv isn’t even baptized much to the dismay of our very catholic family. Still though, Ash Wednesday reminds me of this every year. What is causing me harm right now? What do I need to work on to be a better me?

Coincidentally, Hub got some health news last week. Not news that is putting him on his death bed or anything, but some news that puts him at very high risk for a heart attack and heart disease. His cholesterol is ok, just borderline high, but the good cholesterol is too low, and his triglycerides are through the roof. It is bad enough where the doctor put him on medication right away, rather than allowing him to reduce it naturally with diet first. Still though, it’s time to make modifications. And these are probably modifications we should have made a long time ago. From what I’ve read, a lifestyle that is much lower in carbohydrates than the one we are currently living, is the ticket—something about the bad carbs holding on to the fat cells or something? I don’t know, I’m not a doctor—but I’ve read the pamphlets. We are slowly adopting the term “whole wheat” in to our vocabulary. (I should say that it was always in mine….but Hub? No way!) We are leaving out the crusty French breads, and bagels that we so love. We’re not eating dessert, even though there is a leftover piece of brownie cheesecake in the fridge that is just calling to me as I type this. I’m cooking with way less butter and oil. We are eating lean meat and fish. We’re about a week in, and so far, it is ok. Hub sent me a text yesterday to tell me that he actually really liked wheat bread! And I baked our quesadillas on whole wheat tortillas last night. Actually, I think they were even better than my original fried ones on flour tortillas.

It’s not as if we haven’t known all along that we should be eating better things—and it is not like we will never indulge again, but this was a wakeup call. I’ve been on and off the diet wagon for years, but mostly for vanity’s sake. We have no idea what we’re doing here really, but we’ve identified the problem. We’re doing research and trial and error to see what works. We know what is causing harm right now. And we are setting off on a journey to fix it for good…not just for 40 days.

Monday, March 7, 2011

30-Day Catchup--Days 14-18 (photo heavy)

Day 14 — An old photo
I was going to scan a photo of my parents that I have in my living room, that Hub refers to as “your Mexican parents” (as in “don’t forget to dust off your Mexican parents”), but I couldn’t get it out of the frame. I can’t explain it, but my mom and dad, who are Polish and German respectively, look very ethnic in this photo. It was probably taken in the mid to late 90’s for their church directory. It’s pretty hilarious, and it drives my mom crazy that I have it on display.

This is the oldest photo I had on my computer—that is me on the left with the curls—I may have had a perm at that point, but I’d bet money on the fact that my mom did that with hot rollers. That was my first communion, so um…I was 8. That was my BFF Jamie next to me. I moved in 6th grade, but she and I reconnected recently through Facebook .

Day 15 — My celebrity crush
Oh my…I fell in love with Robert Downey Jr. a million years ago while watching old 80’s movies when I worked at Blockbuster. He was just so dynamic in everything he was in. He still makes my hear go pitter-pat today.

Day 16 — A favorite food
It’s hard for me to put my finger on one very favorite food. I love food. I love to taste, and sample, and cook new things. My favorite food that I cook is oven fried chicken. Given Hub’s recently diagnosed health conditions, we won’t be eating that one for a while, but damn if it is not the most delicious thing. Especially the grizzle it leaves in the bottom of the pan. Mmmmmm, griiiizzzzzlle…. The recipe is on the back of the Bisquick box, but here is a link. I always use chicken thighs, and this ONLY works if you use a glass pan. Trust me.
Day 17 — A photo of my family
Here are 2— If you’ve been around a while, you’ve seen the first one. The second was taken on a chance run-in with my old friend J on our annual trip to Letchworth in the Fall. I love how we are all just so haphazard.

Day 18 — A baby photo
You’re going to have to take 3….my 3 favorite babies EVAR (each of them between 6 and 8ish months):




Thursday, March 3, 2011


I’m spending my obligatory day in the office this week, which is really a waste of my time because I cannot accomplish anything with all the “Oh Hai!!! Where ya been??”’s and the working on my laptop and the noise. But, it was a term of my WAHM deal and it is also one less day of daycare since the office is close to my mom’s so I should really just shut up about it. Still though, a whole lot of noting gets accomplished when I am here away from my things.

Tuesday night, I decided to color my hair because the grey was completely out of control. I’d bought the color before Christmas, medium dark brown or something, and I usually go more reddish brown, so the darkness, especially on my scraggly ends, was pretty overwhelming. I had a full punch card for a free hair cut, and my schedule was pretty open yesterday, so I decided to go on my lunch break and I had it cut. I had my eyebrows done on a whim too since I wasn’t spending any money, and had no cash on me for a tip. I’m pleased with the results, though still not totally used to the dark brown. For the record, the color matched my roots exactly, so this is as close to “natural” as I have been for many years.



Is there anything less flattering than those salon mirrors though? Sitting there in my cape under the fluorescent lights…I swear, I had 17 chins there. At home, I only have 2.

I never know what to tip when I get my hair cut. When I used to go to the fancy salon years ago, and I got a huge discount because Hub’s company and this salon were part of this local barter program, I would always give the guy $15 or $20. I’m not sure at the cheapy place though. $3? $5? More? I have no freaking clue and it is majorly awk for me. Is there some sort of guide?

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

I don't even know anymore

Man I have been MOODY these last couple of days. I think the 5-ish days of going to bed at midnight and sleeping uninterrupted are catching up with me. (You guys, I watched like 5 movies--2 of them in the theatre.) Or, you know, the slap in the face bringing me back to non-sleeping reality. Your pick. I feel tired, and dreary and beaten, but really for no good reason. Even the sunshine and warmer (as in like, 35!!) temperatures we’ve had the last few days haven’t helped. Oh well, I’m sure I’ll pull out of it soon.

I went to an amazing place this past weekend, where this man does pottery—like has a huge workshop and you can just go in there and watch him work--right up in his face while he chit-chats with you. There is also a huge showroom with thousands of items for sale. I’ve never been to such a place and all the handcrafted pottery was amazing. I bought a gorgeous heavy, deep blue mug, because you know I can’t go anywhere without buying a mug. I just can’t stop thinking about it. I don’t come across many cool places anymore, but this place…was cool. I could have spent a lot of money there. I don’t want to link to his site here because I feel like I could be found by someone local looking for him, but if you are interested in looking at his stuff, email me. (Carrie, I’m looking at you; he’s close to you I think.)

It got me thinking about my untapped creativity though. I used to do a lot of stenciling. I got started in an interior design class in high school, and stenciled many things for years—the last thing being the wooden window box hanging on our porch. And then I just stopped. I don’t know why. I really enjoyed making those cards. And while I may not want to do that in a group setting all the time, I feel like if I invested a little bit, I could really make some nice, useful things. The people I have given my cards to have loved them. And with something like that, the possibilities are endless.

I don’t know though. Maybe I’m reaching, but something has just seemed to be missing lately. Maybe in part to having extra time on my hands from being at home, maybe because the kids are getting big and not sucking the life out ofneeding me as much. I can’t put my finger on what I need or want here, but it is something.