Wednesday, February 27, 2008
We’re slowly clawing our way to a more stable financial status, mostly due to my husband. You see when we met, I was the gal who always balanced her checkbook every month and he was the guy 3 months behind on his student loan payments. So it made sense at that time for me to take charge of the finances and things were going peachy keen until the inevitable – marriage, house, minivan and first child and then well there wasn’t as much petty cash left over at month end for the frivolities that we were used to enjoying; mountains of chocolate covered cherries and ringside seats at midget mud wrestling competitions.
Turns out that my theory of "ignorance is bliss" wasn’t so helpful either. So I handed the financial reins over to my, now fiscally responsible husband, who is mercilessly transforming our debt from a raging, rabid tiger to a cute little calendar-worthy kitten. Part of his budget plan is to supply me with a weekly cash allowance. This allows me the luxury of going out for lunch or purchasing my much needed frivolous items like chocolate and scrapbooking supplies, without disrupting the delicate balance of his budget.
It was actually my idea for the cash allowance because I was getting tired of the daily interrogation. "What’s that you’re chewing? Is that gum? Did you buy that gum? How much was it because I didn’t have that factored in to our budget this week? Spit it out, spit it out right now!!" Alright, that might be a slight exaggeration but you get my point.
I find that I’m much more choosey with my purchases now that I have a limited supply of cash. For example, this afternoon I ran to the drug store downtown with the intentions of purchasing some floss to help me dislodge a piece of apple stuck in my teeth. However, when I found that the cheapest generic floss was still a whopping 2 bucks, I determined that I could probably loosen that apple with my tongue and/or a paper clip over the course of a couple hours rather than frivolously waste 2 bucks that could buy me something else. And while there are somedays when I miss the frivolous spending, I think on the whole, this allowance thing has made me the tight wad that I should have been for years and years.
I did buy $2 worth of chocolate though because, well these PMS hormones aren’t going to quell themselves.
Tuesday, February 26, 2008
You see my skin hates me. It’s almost like it has a mind of its own and it lives to torture me. I like to think of my skin as an angry goddess. Goddess Acnetrius. And for the last few years she and I have been locked in an epic struggle between whiteheads and oil free skin. A battle between oozing pustules and healthy pores.
My skin regime is fairly impenetrable. However, it has its weaknesses and since I can’t apply Proactiv too close to my lips for fear of the benzyl peroxide turning them into strips of fried bacon, I end up getting zits right up against my lip line. Other times they’ll appear right at the hairline or along the jaw and while I’m thankful that I don’t have them all over my face it’s still incredibly annoying.
This week though, during the normal Pre-menstrual siege I was blindsided with a new tactic. A huge pimple inside my ear. I’m not even joking here people. INSIDE MY EAR CANAL. Who knew that was even possible?!
Have you ever tried to pop a throbbing zit inside your ear with a Q tip? Well, unfortunately I have and I can tell you from first hand experience that it’s not a whole lot of fun. Acnetrius, you filthy bitch!
Monday, February 25, 2008
We are persistent though in making sure that our kids watch appropriate programs for their age and hence we take in a lot of Nick Jr. in my house. Now if you’ve ever watched Nick Jr. you’ll have noticed, along with earthworms that are able to morph into parallelograms, that they preface each episode by telling you what your preschooler is getting out of the experience. For example, right before Blue’s Clues the announcement states that, "This program increases your preschoolers’ metacognition." I’m not ashamed to say that I had to look up metacognition just to see what it was. Other shows such as The Wonder Pets are touted as being able to; increase my child’s "phonological awareness".
Now at first I found it utterly ridiculous that they were trying to build up these programs as highly educational by prefacing them with these grandiose descriptions of the skills they teach. Phonological awareness is simply listening to something and figuring out where and what it is. And I was going to do what I’m sure was to be a fabulously funny piece on how my cat increases my phonological awareness on a weekly basis by puking at 5 a.m. causing me to lay in bed and try to gauge where she is retching so that I don’t step in it later.
However, after giving it some thought, and after my 4 yr. old informed me that Jupiter is a gas planet and that Llamas can pull 5 times their weight and have padded hooves, I started to realize that maybe there is something to that after all. Don’t get me wrong, I still think it’s a little silly to make these cartoons sound like college degrees put to animation, however they are certainly a hell of a lot more educational than any cartoon I ever watched as a kid.
What mind widening gems of knowledge did I get from Scooby Doo? That you can manipulate idiots to do ridiculous and dangerous things if you have the right motivation (Scooby snacks). That the smart girl is always a little chubby and wears glasses? That it’s possible to be a criminal mastermind with the use of a rubber mask and a sound effects machine?
How about the Smurfs? What life lessons did I take away from that? That men are truly running the world and the only way you can get noticed, as a woman is to be blonde, and flirtatious? You have to admit that whole Smurfette situation was just weird. One woman to all those men – how did that work?? And talk about stereotypes – Maybe Handy Smurf was a fantastic operatic singer – did he get to pursue anything other than building? No he didn’t. He was pigeonholed! They all were.
So I say bring on the cartoons. Their little shriveled legs might be too weak from lack of use but at least they’ll know everything there is to know about Chinchillas and that’s a useful skill right? Right? I’m sure the exotic pet trade is extremely lucrative.
Friday, February 22, 2008
Let me first stress that your Father and I think that you’re the most handsome young man on the planet. However, being human means possessing certain physical flaws and unfortunately most of yours were passed down through me.
- The cowlick. Don’t ever go for a buzz cut. Trust me, I tried this on you once when you were younger and you’ve got that same swirly cowlick right at the hairline that I have and it’s just not pretty. Thankfully, being a boy you won’t have the terrible bang issues I had as an adolescent, but any career in the military should strictly be avoided.
- The half smile. You have a wonderful smile! However, you should master the skill of the half smile for picture situations, because if you smile fully your eyes will disappear completely just like Momma’s and all that will be visible is teeth, gums and two slits.
- The hairy back. I can’t take full blame for this one personally but it does come from my mother’s side of the family. Let’s just hope that your body hair works like mine and lightens considerably with exposure to the sun so that it’s less noticeable. Otherwise, I’ll be happy to perform some form of hair removal on you whenever you request it.
My dearest Gwen,
We couldn’t have hoped for a more beautiful daughter, especially considering the family traits working against you and I deeply regret that you inherited:
- My ears. They’re just a tad large and as you age the ear lobe will become even more bulbous and will upturn slightly so that they resemble two large upholstered buttons flopping around on the side of your head. The only way to combat this is to weigh them down with extremely heavy dangle earrings or to cover them with your hair. This will backfire a little if, like me, you also inherit the habit of constantly tucking your hair behind your ears – and why wouldn’t you since they’re so large and enormously capable of such a task.
- My very pale complexion. Several times when you were younger people enquired about the bruises near your temples, only to discover that they weren’t bruises at all but merely the fact that your skin was so thin and pale that the veins were easily viewed through it. Don’t ever plan on getting a tan, unless you consider being covered with 3 million freckles a "tan". I’m hoping that by the time you’re old enough to care – that "pale" will be the new look.
- Your father’s feet. Count out any future plans to model sandal-wear because unfortunately you’ve inherited your father’s toes and while they are certainly not grotesque in any way shape or form, they’re not exactly dainty either. In the future you should go for a peep toe shoe rather than a full open toed option.
All my love, Momma
Now you may notice that most of these traits are mine, and that makes sense since I’m the most conscious about myself, but mostly it’s because Matt’s traits are things that won’t manifest for a little bit longer – like those ghastly chicken legs he had when we first started dating (thankfully they filled out once I fattened him up), his receding hairline or his penchant for gnawing on his fingernails until he bleeds.
And yet despite it all, we’ve made two of the cutest kids I’ve ever seen:
Wednesday, February 20, 2008
That automatic flushes should be removed from all toilets. They frighten children (and some adults) they’re prone to malfunction so that they flush repeatedly creating a "Niagara falls" effect in both noise and water consumption, and half the time they don't flush anyway so you're stuck touching the same damn button that 50 million other feces infested hands have touched. At least with a handle you could use your foot!
That what the Greeks and Romans referred to as "the Ambrosia of the Gods" still exists today in the form of Little Debbie crème filling.
That a toddler’s desire to shove his finger up his nose to the 3rd knuckle, greatly increases proportionate to the number of judgmental on-lookers. The same goes for crotch grabbing, temper tantrums and the use of the word "fuck".
That all public restrooms (including the men’s – let’s hear it for the Daddy’s) should be equipped with baby changing stations.
That there is a special level of hell for people who steal and/or vandalize lawn ornaments, jack-o-lanterns and Christmas decorations. Perhaps a hell in which they go to sleep every night secure in the safety of their neighborhood, and the sanctity of respect for our common man only to wake up in the morning to find that their genitalia has been stolen off their body, mutilated and thrown into the middle of the street. Oh and there’s also a special level for door to door salesmen too. They’ll be forced to care for 50 1month olds and then when they’re all finally down for a nap, and they have one small shining moment of peace, before their butt can even hit the couch there will be a knock on the door, signaling an army of beagles to howl for 15 min. straight.
That you get out of life what you put into it.
That there is nothing better than sleeping late on the weekends, snuggled up in bed with your spouse, the kids and the dog.
That there is no such thing as a comfortable g-string.
That it’s never a good idea to reunite a boy band almost 20 years after their heyday. Because curling up with a screen-printed pillowcase of former pop stars pushing 40 and the guy from Boogie nights will be just a little creepy.
Tuesday, February 19, 2008
I guess I really do have a secret desire to wear a diaper made out of toilet paper and suck mamosas out of a baby bottle.
It started out well enough. I was greeted warmly upon arrival by the Guest of Honor. Pleasantries were exchanged, she was genuinely happy I had taken the time and effort to come. I was offered one of the 2 remaining sugar cookies and a glass of luke-warm punch.
However, when I set my gift on the table her mother pounced on it immediately and unceremoniously pawed through the tissue paper in my gift bag to see what I had brought (an underarm thermometer and Diaper Genie II refill – pathetic I know but they were on her registry and she’s only my cousin by marriage). Obviously unimpressed, she then made a show of calling for someone to help her carry some of the "larger" gifts out to the truck. It became a little awkward at that point and I ended up taking my leave without even having to take off my coat.
So in the end it left a bad taste in my mouth and I now refer to it as the Drive Thru Baby Shower. I only wish it had made use of an actual drive thru because it was colder than hell that day and I would have appreciated staying in the car. It’s odd though that I would be offended. After all, wasn’t I celebrating the fact that I could simply show up, drop off my gift and go? Wasn’t I thrilled about the convenience of it all? Deep down was I really longing to guess the circumference of that woman’s belly with a piece of string and earn a free scented candle???
Any type of shower is simply a thinly veiled ploy for gifts. That’s the point really and while I thought I despised the smoke and mirrors (games/activites) that are always employed to make you think it’s an actual celebration rather than a request for free stuff, I’m beginning to see now that people need to shove a balloon up their shirt and try to tie their shoes in the fastest time. Otherwise we just don’t feel that the thought behind that underarm thermometer was truly appreciated.
Friday, February 15, 2008
What momentous event am I celebrating?? My hair has finally grown out enough that I can put it in a ponytail!! And it actually stays too – without clippies or chunks of it slipping out . I think you've all been there ladies. An ill advised haircut, executed very poorly and resulting in the necessary purchase of a bevy of creams and gels and most importantly, hats, to make it halfway tolerable. And now, after months of impatient waiting, the celebration of long hair can begin.
Listed below are the planned activities:
Bonfire: The vast array of headbands; the ugly ones, the pinchy ones, the (ack) tortoiseshell ones, that were a necessary evil during the "growing out" phase will be gathered up, doused with lighter fluid and torched in a ceremonial bonfire.
Whiplash: I shall spend the entire weekend whipping my head and new lengthy locks like a 1980’s video babe or a model in a Pantene commercial, or maybe a little like this gal.
Sore arms: I plan on ponying and unponying my hair excessively this weekend. Up, down, up, down – it will be incessant and extremely gratifying.
Accessorize: For far too long my wrists have been bare, or graced only by a watch or beaded bracelet. I must purchase new hairbands and carry at least three at a time on my wrist for emergency use.
Bring out the razor: Now that the ponytail is back it’s time to re-implement the neck shaving routine. Everyone has neck hair I know but mine is out of control and makes the back of my neck resemble Cousin It when I pull my hair up in a ponytail. It’s an unfortunate family trait but one that can be managed with the use of industrial strength hair trimmers and a steady hand (my husband’s hand to be exact– clear your calendar for Sunday night shaving duty my Love).
Thursday, February 14, 2008
-New York style
-How the Cookie Crumbles
-All Razzed Up
-Aloha, You Nutty German
-Parlez Vous Praline
-White in Shining Armor
-Chip Off the Old Choc
-Mad for Manhattan
-Fly Me to Heathrow
-Do the Truffle
He got me a sampler platter from Flarah's (http://www.flarahs.com/) a little Bistro/Catering/Cheesecake shop that enticed me in with it's fabulous decor, and made me a loyal fan with its decadent desserts.
Wednesday, February 13, 2008
1. He can do math in his head. Now this might not seem like such a big deal to others with the same ability, but to a gal who can’t add without secretly moving her fingers behind her back, this is a big turn-on.
2. He knows the capitals of all 50 states and can recite them at will. This gets me a little hot actually, "Why don’t you come on over here and whisper the capital of Wisonsin in my ear big boy!"
3. He does this little hop on one leg after he throws a bowling ball, and I don’t know what it is about it but I have a hard time not taking him right there on the waxed hardwood.
4. He looks great in baseball pants.
5. He actually organizes the kitchen cupboards.
6. He leaves a trail of toothpicks wherever he goes and while this is mostly intensely irritating, it’s also sometimes nice to stumble upon one on a lonely night at home and realize that he was there, just a few hours earlier and that he’ll be home and warm in bed next to me soon . . . so that I can wake up and complain about how I almost impaled myself with that toothpick he left on the floor!
7. He has never once, and I mean NEVER, said to me; "I don’t get this whole blogging thing that you do and why you would want to post such random and sometimes personal things for the world to see." And he’s never censored me nor suggested that I should censor myself either and that means more to me than he’ll probably ever know.
8. He’ll often say "whatever makes you happy" and he actually means it.
9. Even though I have enough scrapbooking paper to cover the entire surface of the moon – twice – he never tells me I have too much or stops me from buying even more. Sometimes when he’s out shopping without me he’ll buy me scrapbooking supplies that he thinks I’ll like – all the girls are jealous of that one!
10. Who won the 1972 World Series? What was Gorbachev’s middle name? I don’t know nor do I really care, but my man has vast trivia knowledge and he loves to flaunt it. And I love to watch him flaunt it. Especially when I’m on his Trivial Pursuit team.
11. Whenever we have guests over that have never been to our house before he immediately takes them on a complete tour; top to bottom, refrigerator to toilet, closet to furnace. I can’t say that I get it, but I love how proud he is of the home we’ve made together, and it gives me motivation and reason to clean up the spilled laundry detergent and wads of lint that accumulate on top of the dryer.
12. He’s got this incredible chest of hair and I love to run my fingers through it like they’re little gnomes running happily around in the flora and fauna of his manliness. Okay, that sounds a little weird doesn’t it? The point is that I love that hairy chest of his.
13. He took over litter box cleaning duty when I first became pregnant about 5 years ago, and has never suggested that I should take back that task. He’s so possessive of it that he actually gets upset with me if I clean them before he gets around to it. If that’s not a turn-on then I don’t know what is. Mere physical attraction and love might get you through the first couple years, but it’s things like this that keep the spark alive!
14. When he watches sports at home he yells and cheers like he’s on the sidelines, whereas when we’re actually in attendance at a sporting event, he’s as reserved as a normal person would be just watching it from home. Still haven’t figured this one out but I love it.
Happy Valentine’s day Baby! I love you.
Tuesday, February 12, 2008
If only she’d worn the pearls instead of the silver locket to that meeting with North Korea; they might have surrendered those nukes.
One of them made the statement that it bothered her that every time she saw Mrs. Clinton that she seemed to be wearing the same earring and necklace set. The other 2 agreed and said something to the effect of how you’d think she’d have "people" who would be watching out for stuff like that. I mean after all she is a multi-millionaire and is running for the presidency. According to these women it’s quite different that you and I wear the same watch everyday or only own 3 necklaces, but a woman who’s going to be in the public eye and is seeking the presidency should have a vast array of stylish jewelry which she should rotate on a daily basis.
Now first off I was struck by the true absurdity of the conversation. Secondly I was struck with how catty women really are. Thirdly, I was in awe that three highly educated women would even stoop so low as to enter into such a conversation. Have we nothing better to do with our time ladies? Is our genetic need for competition with fellow members of our sex so strong that it manifests in conversations such as this?
Do women sit around and giggle about how silly Obama looked when he wore the exact same tie to the Iowa and North Carolina primaries or how Mitt Romney styles his hair? I don’t think so. I think it’s just natural for us to tear women down. Especially when they’re strong figures like Hillary that have such a polarizing effect on people. Imagine if she did win the presidency. After her inaugural speech there’ll be just as much conversation about what she wore as there is about what she said. It’s not fair, and the sad part is that we do it to ourselves. Men aren’t out there bashing McCain because he’s too short to pull off a double breasted suit, and yet we’re trash talking this strong intelligent woman because we think she should have more jewelry.
What if that earring and necklace set was a gift from Chelsea or an antique passed down from her grandmother? Even if it was a $12.50 set from Avon – who cares? I for one will be happy to place my vote for a woman who has withstood the fire and the shame of public humiliation from an adulteress husband. A woman who continues to hold her head high and stand by her principles; a wife, a mother, a daughter who is intelligent and passionate about this country. And I don’t mind when people say that she’s a power hungry bitch, because quite frankly, that’s what it takes to be president. Look at every other man who’s held the position and tell me that they weren’t power hungry attention seeking type A’s. She wants the power because she is confident that she can make this country a better place if she has it. The only difference is that she’s a woman so she’s labeled as a bitch instead of strong; stubborn instead of determined.
You know there are times when I think I’d make a pretty good fanatical liberal feminist. But most of the time all that angst just gives me a headache so I’ll step down from my soapbox now.
Monday, February 11, 2008
No, I don't.
So don't walk your ass into my cubicle so that you can hang over my wall and talk to the person next to me. It's rude, it's disrespectful of my personal space and it's a little bit awkward especially when I have my headphones on and am staring intently at my screen and don't realize you're there until I reach over to open my top desk drawer . . . and find my hand in the top of your drawers instead.
Friday, February 8, 2008
Here it is folks. A veritable symbol of the excess of my childhood and my Mother's penchant for expressing her love through gifts; The Barbie motorhome:
Isn’t it glorious? You could fit a veritable army of plastic blond bombshells in this baby. It came complete with living room, kitchen and bath.
Of course, after removing the mouse turds from the floor and wiping it down with an entire container of anti-bacterial wipes, the kids wanted to play with it. Aaron especially. So I dug out the Barbies that Mom had sent home with me months earlier and the memories just came flooding back.
Check this guy out. I call him Tubbs. If you look closely you’ll see that he’s not wearing socks. I don’t know if he came that way or if his socks got lost at some point in time, but you can’t deny that he looks like an authentic Miami Vice action figure.
I like to refer to these two as Madonna and George Michael. Sure they’re not as rough around the edges as the real things were, but every time I look at her the song “Dress you up in my love” plays on a loop in my head, and this guy – well let’s just say I’d get a little suspicious if he and Tubbs wandered into the bathroom of the mobile home together.
Wednesday, February 6, 2008
I was only 10 when this entry was written. Ah to be 10 again. Matt Eddlemen was quite cute, in a scrawny geeky sense, and my instincts were right - he turned out to be barely even crush-worthy, especially once we hit high school. I totally kicked ass on that Pizza Hut reading challenge. I was in 'pepperoni and extra cheese personal pan pizza' heaven month after month!
The thing I like best about this is just how random it is. It goes straight from the weather, to pizza, to recess, and then straight on to love interests. Of course when I think back on it, that's pretty much the way my brain worked back then - random. And actually that's kind of how it still works, except I don't care much about the weather, don't have recess, or love interests - except my hubbie of course. Okay, so maybe the only constant is the love of free personal pan pizzas.
Tuesday, February 5, 2008
"This is Tha Bomb!"
"This spreadsheet that they sent over is the bomb, it’s great! It has all the data we need."
"Oh, . . . cool."
Now I’m not sure of the true origin of the phrase "Tha Bomb" but I’m sure its originator never intended for it to be used to describe a spreadsheet. Besides, the use of such terms really confuses the white folks who have never seen MTV. Therefore I’m contemplating routing the following around the office:
To: All white employees
RE: Proper use of urban slang
It has come to the attention of management that certain urban slang terms are being used in the office inappropriately and are causing confusion amongst the staff. While we encourage the use of culturally diverse language it’s important to consider both your subject matter and your audience.
For example: If your co-worker thinks that Snoop Dogg is a cute nickname for Charlie Brown’s beagle then you may want to refrain from expressing your admiration of his new Lexus by saying, "That is one sweet ride homeboy, I bet you’re rollin’ in the honies!" (translation: That car is really neat. I assume you are able to garner the attention of attractive females with it.)
It’s also good to keep in mind that terms such as; Tha Bomb, Off the Hizzy, Dope, Fly, and Off the Hook should not be used to refer to data, spreadsheets, your new split screen monitor, the fancy new purple highlighters in supply or the new fax machine, nor should these terms be used by anyone who wears or has ever worn the following: Dockers, penny loafers, a sweater vest or any clothing item purchased at JC Penny.
Thank you for your cooperation and if you should have any further questions regarding the correct usage of urban slang, please contact Human Resources to check out the company video, "Shizzle your Cubizzle; Appropriate Use of Slang in the Corporate Environment" featuring Rob VanWinkle (fka Vanilla Ice).