Friday, May 25, 2007

10 Day Weekend

As most people are gearing up to enjoy a leisurely 3 day holiday weekend, I’m preparing for a full fledged family bonding/home renovation extravaganza. Matt’s family is arriving this evening (his parents, 2 nieces, 1 nephew).

Our first order of business will be an outing to Adventureland on Saturday where I will be content to watch my son frolic with his cousins and will not be riding any rides that require a safety belt. Not because I’m frightened – I actually love roller coasters and most rides, it’s just that my pregnancy fat has decided to stick around and invite a lot of its friends over to stay as well, and until I find the willpower to evict them all I don’t want to be one of those gals in the Weight Watchers meeting or on The Biggest Loser that recounts some sad sob story about how they got caught in a roller coaster seat, or how the safety harness wouldn’t make it around them and they just felt humiliated. I can’t have much sympathy because I mean really, they have eyes, they’ve seen the waistband of their pants and should be able to compare it to the safety belt in front of them and realize that it’s just not going to work! And as far as safety harnesses go – if the seat looks like it’s only capable of housing one of your butt cheeks then I doubt that the safety bar/harness or whatever safety contraption it has will fit over/around you.

The kids and Matt’s mom will be staying until Monday morning and I’m quite looking forward to spending time with them because they are my favorite nieces and nephews. Once they’re gone we’ll focus on our kitchen remodeling project with the help of Matt’s dad. Okay, so his dad is going to do it all and we’re just going to hold things for him and probably measure something now and again. Hey, I picked out the countertops and flooring, I think my work is done. So I hope that goes smoothly and if it doesn’t end up looking like something Frank from Trading Spaces designed I’ll probably post some pictures on here to show it off.

Once the kitchen is complete we’re heading for Kansas for the baptism of who I’m sure will be another one of my favorite nieces. Since the baptism is on Sunday and it’s a 6 hour drive, I’ve taken Monday off for recuperation time and won’t be going back to work until Tues. June 5th. Ahh I love vacation time, even if I’m not actually vacationing per se.

So I doubt I’ll post anything until I return so the 2 people that read this site will have to find something else to do with their time while I’m gone.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Beware of the Jalapeno

I made salsa last night. Now I’ve never made my own salsa before mainly because I don’t think it necessary to make something that you could already buy very inexpensively in a jar. However, my workplace is having a salsa competition and in the spirit of camaraderie I thought I could whip something up. I chopped the onions, the tomatoes, the cilantro, the green pepper, the red pepper and the jalapeno pepper. I was very proud of myself.

Ten minutes later I notice a strange burning sensation in the cuticles of my thumbs. I licked them, I don’t know why, just a reflex reaction I guess and my entire tongue goes numb. So I’m just thinking that I didn’t wash my hands well enough and there are still some residuals from the peppers. I go wash my hands thoroughly again. After I dry them off the burning sensation is even worse and has now spread to every finger and the palms of my hands. I don’t dare pick anything up or touch anything because the pressure on my flesh makes the pain soar.

So now I’m freaking out that the residual pepper oil will be transferred to my baby when I touch her. I’m envisioning her somehow getting my hand in her mouth (which is not all that far fetched since she’s teething and will chew on anything) and being desperately ill for the rest of the evening. The good news is that if I ever decide to commit a crime I’ll have no fingerprints to leave at the scene because they’ve been burnt off.

I call my friend, she suggests soaking in milk. So I soak them in milk and get instant relief. However, since I do have 2 children to attend to I can’t exactly sit with my hands in milk all night so soon after my mini milk bath the burning returns.

After I get the kids to bed I consult the self-treatment bible; the internet. I discover that I’m not alone. It seems that this sort of thing happens quite often and in varying degrees. One poor fellow had the misfortune of taking a piss after cutting some jalapeno and let’s just say another appendage was burning besides his fingers. One gal took her contacts out after handling some peppers and her eyes were watering for a full day.

Most of the suggestions on the internet pointed towards dairy products. It counters the oil in the pepper or something. Yogurt is highly recommended. So there I was soaking my hands in a vat of strawberry Yoplait, and wondering how this occurred. I mean where was the FDA on this one? They label everything else, “this product may contain nuts”, “not for human consumption”, “do not take orally” . . . nobody could smack a sticker on that jalapeno that says “wear skin protection while cutting”. I mean cans of spray paint are labeled “do not spray in eyes”. Diaper rash crème is labeled “for external use only” I mean these things are obvious – they don’t even need labels and yet there are killer jalapeno’s out there with no warnings!

Thankfully the yogurt helped and I’m pretty much cured. There is still a little lingering burning sensation now and again but I think I’ll survive and I’ve learned a valuable lesson: If you ever need to give some nasty payback to somebody, slice open a jalapeno and rub it on their toilet seat.

Friday, May 18, 2007

Baby got front

I find that I think about boobs a lot. Am I some sick pervert with lesbian tendencies, you may ask? No, it’s just that 1. my boobs are huge, and 2. I’m breastfeeding, so whipping them out 5-6 times a day tends to keep them on your mind.

As far as I recall, I’ve always been large in that area. I think I went from a training bra straight into a C cup during puberty and shortly before the birth of my 2nd child I was encapsulating my mammaries with a size DD or E. I currently wear an F or G since they’re larger due to milk production. I’ve been told by “bra professionals” that size E is the same as DD, and therefore EE is the same as F, why? I don’t know, nor do I know how that translates when I see a DDD cup size – is that an E and 1/2 ? I’ve never seen anything larger than a J cup – probably because the weight of anything larger would surely crush a woman’s chest cavity, squashing her lungs and other vital internal organs . . . but I digress.

The real purpose of this blog entry is to share with you the lists I’ve compiled of the pros and cons of having large breasts. Sure everyone thinks it’s great to have big boobs. Women with small tits always want bigger ones, but let me just tell you, more than once a week I wish mine would shrivel down to a B cup.

Pitfalls of the well endowed:

- The guy with the melon stand at the fruit market always gives you a suspicious look when you walk by as if you’re smuggling his prized produce under your shirt.

- Your bras have to be special ordered from a factory in India that originally specialized in elephant harnesses

- After you put your shirt on, it’s 5-6 inches shorter in the front than it is in the back.

- When you lie on your back without a bra your armpits are full.

- It takes your husband 5 minutes to unhook your bra – hey this isn’t a two hook affair here – we’re talking at least 4 and possibly more and there’s a lot of pressure there too. He could lose an eye or a hand when that thing finally comes unclasped. My husband has to put on safety glasses and has been trained to jump back a good distance when that last clasp is released.

- Within 2 hours of putting your bra on the back of it has slid up between your shoulder blades and your nipples are dangerously close to the equator.

But it’s not all bad. Here are the good things:

- Your purse never falls off your shoulder because you have a permanent indent from your bra strap that holds your purse strap in place too.

- You’re at a party and there’s no end table to set down your plate of hor d oeuvres? No problem, use your chest. You might have to lean back a little so that the plate doesn’t slide off, but other than that it’s awesome. No more dropped crumbs; you could even eat hands free if you really wanted to.

- Built in pocket. I’ve stored/carried everything from baby pacifiers to keys to Kleenexes to pens to checkbooks in my cleavage. I think when I’m older and the kids are all grown I’ll get a little Chihuahua and carry it around in there.

- You can tell that it’s raining without stepping fully out the door.

- Nobody makes you run because they’re afraid you’ll give yourself a black eye.

- They make excellent hand warmers. Just stick your frigid fingers underneath them and you’re warm again in no time. If I could harness the heat that these things put off I could heat my home for free!

Thursday, May 17, 2007

All the world is a Happy Meal

The other day Matt took Aaron to Chicago Dog and Deli for lunch. A very quaint place that obviously serves hot dogs and deli items. When I came home from work and Aaron told me about it he said, “it’s just like Donald’s” (which is how he says McDonald's). What attributes it shared with McDonald’s he couldn’t quite explain.

They say that when you have kids all dining experiences revolve around McDonald’s. I didn’t believe it before I had kids but I’m afraid to say it’s true. It appears that to a child every restaurant is a McDonald’s or at least comparable to a Mickey D’s. Maybe it’s our own fault for taking him too often, but let’s face it, it’s cheap, it’s fast and when I need a moment to think about something other than runny noses, dirty diapers, the best way to remove dried play-doh from carpet, I can take the kid to the playplace and he’s content for at least an hour. Plus the fountain CocaCola is so good I’m tempted to shoot it directly into my veins. It's not like we take him daily. In a really stressful month he'll maybe go 5 times and yet the kid can zero in on the golden arches from a mile away. “Look Momma a Donald’s” he’ll say as we pass one and it’s always quickly followed with an “I’m hungry” even if his mouth is so full of goldfish crackers that little flakes of them shoot out his mouth as he talks.

When Aaron was younger we’d just alternate between a cheeseburger and nugget Happy Meal. Now that he’s old enough to decide – he doesn’t. He just complains about our choice.

“Aaron do you want a cheeseburger or nuggets?”
“I want french fries and cheeseburger and nuggets”
“You can’t have a cheeseburger and nuggets, pick one or the other, what do you want?” “french fries”
“Yes dear it always comes with fries, what do you want with it?”

By this time the vacant teenager who hates the world and all who live in it for absolutely no reason, is begging for my order with her impatient sighs and I just pick. Inevitably if I pick a cheeseburger he wants nuggets and vice versa.

But it’s all worth it when I can grab that bag and say “Dinner’s served!”

Monday, May 14, 2007

Toddler as deterrent to marital discontent

Sat. night we’re running around trying to get dinner together after a long day of running errands, and planting flowers and veggies. I suggest we grill out hot dogs and hamburgers only to be informed that we have no hamburger buns. Matt asks if I want him to run to the store and get some – I say no, that it’s late and we’ll forget the hamburgers and just have hot dogs.

I turn around 5 minutes later and the man is nowhere to be found. He’s gone to the store to get hamburger buns. I’m fairly well annoyed. The grill is on, Aaron is playing “firefighter” with the hose for the 20th time that day and the only thing he is dowsing is himself, Gwen is crying in the walker and I’m still up to my elbows in potting soil.

Matt returns thinking he’s husband of the year for getting buns (I secretly am pleased since I was really craving a burger – but of course I’m not going to let that show, I have a reputation to uphold!). So he’s asking me if I’m mad at him and I’m being playfully upset with him and then it happens.

Aaron walks over to me and says:

“Momma, you love Daddy or not?”

We laughed for 5 minutes straight. Anyone currently without a toddler – I suggest you pick one up next time you’re out and about.

Friday, May 11, 2007

Wildebeast Sandals

I attended a wedding for my husband’s cousin in April and purchased a new outfit, complete with new fashionable black wedge sandals for the occasion. I was slightly hesitant to buy the sandals in the first place because they were rather loftier than I usually like, but I figured “hey, that’s the style nowadays and they’re on sale so what the heck”. The picture is not my actual sandal but a similar pair to give you an idea. Mine are slightly higher and the straps are not as thick so as to dig into the flesh of my foot much deeper.

I’ve twisted my ankle twice, almost fell on my ass once and in general have suffered quite a bit of discomfort. Why am I still wearing them you may ask? Well because they’re the only pair of black sandals I have and now that it’s Capri weather I’m in desperate need of black sandals to coordinate with my outfits.

However, a new phenomenon has occurred with these sandals which has finally convinced me that they must die. I’ve worn them to work and walking across the hallowed marble floors of my office building creates a sound effect very akin to a herd of wildebeasts trudging across the hard plains of the savannah. In general I’m not fond of attracting attention to myself in public settings, and certainly not fond of doing so by impersonating a large grazing mammal.

The wedge part of the sandal is made up of some odd substance not unlike the material that bowling pins are made out of and it produces an echoing “clippety clop” like sound. Then since there is no strap up around the ankle, they’re kind of like a wedge flip flop and you get that loveley “fwap” sound with every step as the sandal tries to catch up with your foot. Clip clop fwap, clip clop fwap, clip clop fwap . . . and take that times two.

Now you would have thought I would have been aware of this phenomenon, having worn these sandals on several different surfaces. However, it’s easy not to notice such things in public places, what with the whining/screaming of my children and the general rumble of everyday life, but here in this corporate tomb the sound of these shoes is like a Staind concert in the middle of a monastery – fairly noticeable.

Payless here I come.

Tuesday, May 8, 2007

Psycho Mom

So I have this really bad habit of picturing my children dead, or at least dismembered or maimed in some horribly atrocious way. I don’t know if it’s normal, I may be in need of medication, but I’d like to think it’s just a mom thing. It’s not like I really think they’re going to die, I don’t obsess about it or put them in a padded room or send them outside in a bubble or anything I’ll just get these little flashes of horror that last a split second and then they’re over.

For example, every time there’s a storm I inevitably envision my son’s room being either a) struck by lightning and catching fire and I’m unable to get to him, b) ripped entirely off the house by a twister or c) flooded (and it’s always just his room, not the rest of the house). If he’s in the backyard playing and I leave him unattended I often think of the following scenarios; a) he’s fallen and a stick has gouged his eye out, b) he’s in the garage guzzling antifreeze, c) he’s fallen off the swing set and broken his neck.

I find that I obsess a little less about my 5 month old, probably because I feel she can’t really injure herself that much yet, and the kid is downright clingy and is always by my side. However, I put her in the swing outside yesterday (one of those baby swings that hang on the swing set) and she proceeded to suck on the safety strap. At first I found this really cute then realized that those straps have been exposed to the elements for over 2 years and are probably chock full of parasites or bacteria of some deadly kind. So I spent a good 10 seconds convinced that she was going to get malaria before I went and got one of her toys for her to chew on. The irony is that her teether toy probably had more bacteria on it than the strap.

All in all it gives me a sense of being a better parent. I mean look at all the things that could have happened to my children and yet has not. Must be doing something right huh? Or perhaps my luck has finally run out and today will be the day that Aaron somehow simultaneously stabs himself with a steak knife and burns himself on the stove, scarring him for life, if not killing him altogether. Maybe I should call home and check.