Saturday, January 30, 2010

Dear Hugh,

Thank you for pointing out the fact that setting the trash in the garage is not really the same thing as taking out the trash. In the spirit of that conversation, allow me to point out that placing your dirty dishes in the sink is not the same thing as doing the dishes.

I think this makes us even; thus restoreth the balance of power in our marriage.

Your loving wife

Friday, January 29, 2010

Out of the Mouths of Babes

Our visit to the pediatrician’s office today was complicated when our regular physician was unavailable to examine The Teenager, forcing us to see the on-call PA instead.

It wouldn’t have been any big deal except, the PA was young. And Male. And sorta hot.

And, he asked The Teenager questions like “How are you peeing?” and “When was the last time you pooped?”and, had she been struck dead by lightning at the moment, I don’t think she would have minded in the least.

As it was, she blushed fifteen shades of crimson, closed her eyes tightly and answered the questions being sure to add "Um, you know I'm here about my throat, right?".

As we left the clinic she breathed a huge sigh and said “Well, that was awkward.”

Truer words have never been spoken.
Gag Me with a Cotton Swab

The Teenager has been under the weather for the past three days so, today, I am taking her to the pediatrician for a Strep culture. I hope it comes up negative but, I also want her to feel better and, if she has the Strep, the nice doctor will prescribe drugs to make that happen.

As luck would have it, she has no basketball or volleyball games scheduled for this weekend so; her timing is good unlike say, her father who seems to take ill at the most inopportune moments.

Anyway, while the girl has been ill, we have spent some much needed quality time together, surfing the internet on The Lazymaker, watching movies (yesterday we watched 500 Days of Summer and we really enjoyed it) and texting each other from our respective ends of the couch (I know. The texting from the same room thing is a teenage phenomenon I will never understand but, I'm a cool mom so I go with it).

It is a pity that it takes some rogue virus to slow us down enough to appreciate one another’s company, I need to work on that and; we can start with me being there to hold her hand when the doctor jams a giant Q-tip down her throat.

Mother-daughter pedicures would be more pleasant but, I have to work with the opportunities I am given.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Update: Fondant Tastes Like Ass. In Other News, World Continues to Revolve

Besides, once we scraped off the fondant layer, the cake itself was actually quite tasty which is a really good thing considering the fact that we had one helluva lot of it left over after the shower.

Not to worry; Hugh and the kids are fully functioning cake Hoovers and they will have the leftovers gone before the week is out, mark my words.

So, the cake was a big hit and the shower itself was lovely, our hostess prepared a fabulous dinner of homemade soups and breads and we all enjoyed a little girl time away from the drudges of our ordinary lives. You know, until we got home.

Today, I spent the majority of the day at home on the couch with The Teenager who is feeling a bit poorly. In all honesty, she could have gone to school but; sometimes you need a day to recharge and today was her day. I joined her because I am lazy. Honest but, lazy.

Later in the afternoon, we took a drive into town to drop the Man-Cub off at his tutor's house and, while he toiled away at his reading, The Teenager and I went to JC Penney to look for a dress for her upcoming Continuation ceremony and dance (translation: Eighth Grade Graduation and Parental Weep-fest, mah babeee!). She tried on a couple of really cute dresses and finally settled on one that is both modest and attractive; I was quite proud of her choice.

Then, we went to the pet store to buy crickets for the Cub’s tarantula because; what else does one follow up dress shopping with if not the purchase of sacrificial insects?

Then, we came home where are just now debating the merits of the various leftovers in the fridge. Dinner could be anything from chicken tacos to sandwiches and cream of mushroom soup but, one thing is certain; there will be cake for dessert.

Or, for dinner. Depending on my mood (see above: lazy).

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Digging Out of the Rut With a Fork and a Spoon

Remember my quest to try new things? Remember, specifically, that I was going to make homemade cream of mushroom soup? Well, I tried it last night and, let’s just say that, depending on whom you asked; the end result resembled either a melted Oreo Blizzard or dirt soup.

And, I’m guessing you can accurately identify which of my children made the comparison to dirt.

For the record, while the soup looked less than appealing, it tasted quite delicious; the Man-Cub even ate a full bowl while making up limericks with words that rhymed with dirt and soup (you guessed correctly, yes?) and, since his class is working on limericks right now, it was almost like I was providing an educational experience right there at the dinner table.

I am so going to bring that up at our next Parent/Teacher conference.

My second attempt at something new followed dinner and, while the jury is still out, appears to be at least a partial sucess; I decorated a cake for tonight’s baby shower and I used rolled fondant to do it.

The fondant was sort of a challenge to work with but; the end result was not horrible to look at. Of course, if that project turns out to be the mirror opposite of the soup, it will look good and taste like dirt.

That would suck, like, majorly.

So, yeah, fingers crossed that the cake tastes at least as good as it looks.

And, in the future, we will all wear blindfolds when we eat my homemade cream of mushroom soup.

Monday, January 25, 2010

I see London, I See France, I See the Man-Cub’s Under….Wait…Where are Your Underpants?

As I mentioned earlier, I spent all of yesterday in Neighboring City with The Teenager’s volleyball team. Generally, on Sunday, I am at home doing laundry, obviously; that didn’t get done this week.

Ordinarily, I wouldn’t think it was such a big deal except for the fact that, my inability to do laundry apparently affected the man-Cub’s ability to find clean underwear and, well... my eleven year old son attempted to go commando this morning.

I'll let that sink in for a moment.

Aaand...he might have gotten away with it, except; the kid is terrible at keeping secrets. In this case, he kept wiggling around in his seat at the breakfast table and giggling to no one in particular. When I finally asked what his deal was, he couldn’t contain himself and he confessed.

See? Terrible.

So, I gave the kid an A for Effort, an F for Execution and a C for Creativity and then I rooted around in a bag of old clothing that I hadn’t gotten around to tossing yet and managed to find a pair of undies that would make do for the day, therein ruining the child’s good mood, perhaps forever.

Too bad, said I.

This afternoon, I am doing laundry so as to prevent future attempts at commando-stylings on the part of the Man-Cub.

According to him I am no fun! and, just for that, I am sorely tempted to let him go commando one day; we’ll see how much fun he is once his jeans wear a sore-spot on his tender bits.

We’ll just see.
I Would Make a Terrible Stage Mom

Yesterday was the longest day ever. I was up at 5:00 to get The Teenager and one of her teammates to Neighboring City for their volleyball tournament which lasted until almost 5:30 in the evening with hardly a break for lunch.

While the team got off to a slow start, losing their first two games, they came back with a vengeance, fighting their way back into the championship round where they took third place. Third out of over twenty teams ain’t too shabby although; to hear some of the moms at the tournament, the girls could have played a lot more aggressively.

While I agree that the team wasn’t exactly gelling during the morning games, I was surprised by the energy some moms put into their, how shall I say this, "support" of their daughters. And, by support, I mean rabid sidelines coaching, obviously.

It reminded me a little of that crappy show on cable, where the moms push their young daughters into beauty pageants so that mom can relive her Glory Days (assuming any of those mothers ever had Glory days full of beauty pageants which, I rather doubt) and, it doesn’t really matter if the kid is having a good time or doing her best because Mom knows how it can be done better. Win! Win! Win! So, yes; volleyball stage moms are just like pageant moms except, they deal in kneepads and sweatbands instead of high heels and tiaras. Win! Win! Win!

And, lest you misunderstand me; I’m not against winning by any means. I’m not against supporting your kid. I’m not even against sharing an encouraging tip for improvement but; I do kind of draw the line at second-guessing the coach and at humiliating my kid on the court.

Now, granted, I was never very sporty. I didn’t play volleyball so, what do I know, really? On the other hand, I was a cheerleader and I am relatively confident that, were The Teenager to go out for cheerleading; I would refrain from screaming proper Herkie technique at her from the sidelines.

I’m just saying.

My Dad is totally shaking his head right now and wondering where he went wrong. Hi Dad!

Anyhoodle, as I said, eons ago, The teenager and her team did an awesome job. They are really coming together as a team and they were super-stoked to get to play at the college gym in Neighboring City. I was looking forward to doing some shopping in the city while the team was between games but, as luck would have it; there was no down-time between games. The kids pretty much played back-to-back games. I did find a half an hour to run to the mall for a shower gift for my Bunco friend who is expecting but, other than that, the shopping was a bust.

It’s ok, though; we get to do the same thing again in two weeks and, with any luck, I will find a bit more free time in between biting my nails and biting my tongue.

We’ll see.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Momma Always Told Me, Never Assume Malice For What Stupidity Can Explain

During a recent stop at the Hellmouth, I ran into one of my previous co-workers. P.C.W (previous co-worker) and I used to be fairly good friends, and not just because he always told me how pretty I am and was constantly flirting with me. Although, I am kind of a whore for the attention. Yeah. Like you didn't already know that.


I was wearing a tweed miniskirt, a cashmere cardigan layered over a wine colored silk camisole, tights and calf-high black boots which just happens to be one of my favorite outfits because it is flattering to my figure. Plus, I was having a thin day, for which I was most grateful and appreciative.

So. Imagine my surprise when the first thing P.C.W asked me was if I was pregnant.

On a THIN day, people!

I had just decided to be all offended when P.C.W said “Oh, I just assumed you were because you look all glowy and happy. I mean, it’s not like you’re FAT, or anything.” I decided to take his word for it and not to hold it against him. Because, if you will recall, I am vain as all hell.

And it was a THIN day, people!

Soo.. I asked P.C.W how life was treating him and he told me that his wife had left him and was shacking up with some guy.

How much do you want to bet he told her she was fat one too many times?

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Because It Is Never Good to Get Stuck in a Rut

I think I’m starting to feel the effects of this never-ending winter; I’m lazy and disinterested in things that usually make me quite happy (OPIcures, trash television, poaching new friends from old friends on Facebook). So, I am going to be trying a few new things over the next several days in an effort to pull myself out of the doldrums.

First, I’m going to attempt to make cream of mushroom soup from scratch. I’ve never done it before but; prior to last year, I had never made butternut squash soup and look at how well that turned out, hell, the Man-Cub even likes it. So, yes, cream of mushroom soup it is.

I’m also going to decorate a cake for a baby shower next week and, while I’ve decorated my fair share of cakes, this time, I’m using fondant which is something I have never worked with before. The chances of the cake being absolutely gorgeous and edible vs. the chances of it being hideous and gag-reflex inducing are running at around 50-50 so, fingers crossed on that project.

I’m up to two and a half miles-nonstop and without slowing the pace- on the treadmill so, this week; I am going to go for three and a half miles. I haven’t pushed my shins quite to the breaking point so that will be a novel experience.

The Teenager’s first club volleyball tournament is in Neighboring City this Sunday, haven’t been to one of those before so that will be interesting.

While we are in Neighboring City for the tournament, I’m going to make my usual Sam’s Club run but, this time, I am going to avoid the freezer section wherein the large vats of chocolate chip cookie dough are stored, the candy aisle, the bulk cracker and potato chip section and the bakery; I’m going to leave the building with only healthy items.

Of all the new experiences I am going to attempt, the Sam’s Club trip will probably be the most challenging. Well, that and convincing the Man-Cub to eat a soup that is based on a fungus.

Nothing like a challenge to pull you out of the winter blahs, I always say.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

And They Pulled It Out In Overtime

The Teenager’s basketball team won its' game this afternoon 18-16. The game was neck-and-neck right down to the wire and I am proud to say; the girls really held it together under an awful lot of pressure from the spectators.

On that note, I need to remember to pack a paper sack for the next game; Hugh’s tendency to hyperventilate during the exciting bits is getting a bit worrisome.

On second thought, scratch that; watching Hugh deep-breathe into a lunch-sack in public might prove too embarrassing…. for The Teenager.

I would find it hilarious. That's just how I roll.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Drama, Tears, and Vomit. You Know, the Usual

Our weekend was chockfull o’ drama for the Man-Cub, poor kid.

First, he endured what I will forever refer to as The Incident at Target. The Incident consisted of him accidentally managing to let a check-out stand conveyor belt eat a $25 Visa gift card that he had received for Christmas.

We were waiting at the check-out to purchase some other items, including a video game the Cub had picked out, when somehow, and I’m still not entirely clear on the specifics; the card slipped under the metal plate at the end of the belt. The Cub immediately went into panic mode which probably wasn’t helped by my unsympathetic proclamation of “Well. You’re screwed”.

Tears ensued.

In my defense, you’ve all seen those checkout stands; there was no way in hell to retrieve the card and, as a mother, I felt that facing the disappointment would be a valuable lesson for the Cub.

The Cub, however, disagreed and insisted upon asking someone for help (what? Ask someone for help? What a novel approach!). He chose a grandmotherly type cashier who was moved by the tears, the pouty -lip, the puppy-dog eyes and the histrionics enough to call a manager who listened intently to the Cub’s story and declared “Son, you give me fifteen minutes and a screwdriver and I. will. Get. That. Card.”

And, fifteen minutes, a screwdriver and a claw-like gizmo on a stick later; he did just that.

So, in the end, it was I who learned a valuable lesson; never hesitate to ask for help. And, never underestimate the power of the pouty-lip.

With that drama behind us, I expected smooth sailing through the remainder of the weekend and, as per usual, I was wrong. How wrong came fully into focus at 3:00 this morning when the Cub appeared at my bedside to inform me that he had puked on his pillow.

And, by puked on his pillow, he really meant he had projectile vomited all over his bedroom, exorcist-style and; if you don’t think cleaning up a mess like that at 3:00 in the morning is a challenge, well, then, where the hell were you at 3:00 this morning because I could have used your help.

Luckily, the kids are out of school today so, the Cub can stay home and recuperate without screwing up his run at another Perfect Attendance award and, The Teenager can feed him ice chips and warm 7-Up while I toil away at the store because we are short-handed and I really don’t have a choice.

Also, there is no vomit there.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Couch Blogging

You know when it’s a bad time to complain about your husband spending every free moment officiating at local wrestling tournaments? When he saves up all the money he makes at said wrestling tournaments and uses it to buy you a new laptop. That’s when.

So, yeah, the Invisible Husband bought us both laptops. At first, I was reluctant to accept the gift because, my old PC is perfectly functional and I thought it seemed lazy to surf the net from the comfort of my own couch.

Yep, took about two minutes to get over that ridiculous notion and, I’m happy to say, I am now fully ensconced in the comfort of my recliner. I don’t even have to go upstairs to log onto the internet to search for calorie counts on my daily snacks and, while I’m thinking the exercise I miss out on due to that fact is sort of counter-productive to the whole watching my calories/exercising more thing; I’m totally fine with it.

I reserve the right to call the laptop The Lazymaker on occasion, however (but, only in frustration at my own inability to lose weight, obviously).

Saturday, January 16, 2010

When You Shake My Head Today, This is What Falls Out

-I am looking forward to taking The Teenager to see Dear John even though Nicholas Sparks never writes anything with a happy ending(The Notebook being a slight exception if you ignore the part where everyone dies) and despite the fact that the movie is never as good as the book because; I enjoy spending time with my daughter. And, um, Channing Tatum is hawt.

-What the hell kind of name is Channing Tatum?

-I am in love with my new aesthetician. Her name is Serena and she is totally fixing my face. She is also totally adorable and, if I could, I would carry her around in my pocket.

-That sounded a lot less creepy in my head.

-Following a trip to the barber today; The Mullet will be no more.

-I am really sad that Fox canceled Dollhouse just as it was getting good. I am going to miss seeing Tahmoh Pennikett, shirtless.

-What the hell kind of name is Tahmoh Pennikett?

-I am up to four and a quarter miles on the treadmill. My shins hate me.

-The Teenager has a basketball game today and I am missing it because I have to work. Hugh and the Man-Cub have strict instructions to yell loud enough for all of us.

-The Teenager has about a dozen basketball games to go this season so; I won’t miss out on my share of the cheering, I assure you.

-She also has a number of volleyball tournaments coming up.

-I need to remember to put our fancy stadium seats in my car so as to prevent the occurrence of Bleacher Butt.

-Bleacher Butt looks good on no one.

-I can’t afford for my shins and my butt to hate me.

-My face kind of hates me right now but I don’t care; I lurve Serena and her mad pore-cleaning skilz.

-I am almost late for work, so….

Thursday, January 14, 2010

She Shoots, She Scores! 

Despite this morning’s doomsday predictions of failure (I suuuuuck! I’m going to do so baaaad! This is going to be so embarrassing!), I am pleased to report that; not only did The Teenager not suck but, she scored. Granted, her team lost the game by three points but, for her first foray into the sport, I have to say; The Teenager kicked ass.

We are, understandably, proud.

Also, her athletic gene can be traced directly back to her maternal grandfather because, as her father, Emily and I agreed at the game; she sure as shit didn’t get it from any of us.

I’m just happy she is having fun and, you know, staying out of the Principal’s office.


Tuesday, January 12, 2010

When Did That happen?

I got a letter from The Teenager’s school today. Inside the letter were her current semester grades (A’s and B’s! Even in P.E.! It’s a gosh-darned miracle!) and an invitation to attend the upcoming Freshman Orientation.

For a split second I assumed the school had made a mistake in including the invitation because my daughter? Not old enough to be attending a freshman Orientation! She’s a baby; she’s barely in Middle School, eighth grade to be exact, why she’s…


She’s going to be a Freshman.

Once the realization hit, my ovaries gasped their dying breath and every strand of (natural) brunette hair on my head gave up the battle against the gray.

I fully intend to need the support of a walker by this time tomorrow. Also, now might be a good time to start visiting nursing homes; I wouldn’t want to get stuck in a crappy one.

But, seriously…when did that happen?

Monday, January 11, 2010

Obviously, I Didn’t Die of Blood Poisoning

I’m still mightily perturbed about impaling myself on someone else’s nasty tooth-picking device, however.

On the other hand (the one that wasn’t impaled by someone else’s nasty tooth-picking device), I had a really nice weekend.

Friday I got a massage. Saturday, Hugh, the kids and I went to dinner at a friend’s house where we enjoyed an evening of fun, pizza, wine and laughter and Sunday; I worked up a sweat cleaning the house in a way that it had not been cleaned in quite some time and in which it was dire need.

All of which doesn’t sound like it would add up to much as far as excitement goes but, I’ll take that kind of weekend, any day, especially considering that my weekends are about to get really busy.

Between The Teenager’s Saturday basketball games and Sunday volleyball tournaments, it looks like my house won’t see another thorough cleaning for at least two months. Possibly more once we throw wrestling into the equation.

With all the running around and cheering I’m going to be doing, it certainly is fortunate that I didn’t die from blood poisoning, now isn’t it?

So, not dead but still bitter; this could become a theme.

Thursday, January 07, 2010

It’s all Fun and Games until Someone Dies of Blood Poisoning

I have had a shitty day. Shitty.

It started off with my books not balancing; every time I calculated the numbers, they came up differently. This was irritating in and of itself but, my adding machine was also rocking all over the place due to crap that had gotten shoved underneath it as it sat on my desk. Crap under my adding machine irritates the ever-loving shit out of me as it is and, a rickety rocking adding machine screwing up my math was not something I was happy to deal with so, like a mature adult, I lifted the machine with my left hand and, with my right, I executed a quick sideways sweep of the area while loudly cursing whomever had felt the need to litter my desk in the first place.

As I swept the area, my finger was viciously stabbed by the business end of one of these:

What. The. Fuck.

For the record, I don’t floss my teeth with that kind of instrument and I sure as shit don’t floss my teeth at my desk. Or, in my office. Or, anywhere other than in front of my bathroom mirror for that matter.

So, as I nursed my bleeding, painfully throbbing finger (bastard hit bone, I swear to God), I arrived at the obvious conclusion that someone who works with me is trying to kill me.

Seriously, the human mouth has more bacteria than a dog’s mouth and, when one picks their teeth with a sharp instrument and then leaves it in a location where it is bound to impale an unsuspecting victim, what other conclusion could one possibly draw?

Murder by blood poisoning.

And, you can laugh now but, when my finger turns black and falls off, causing a panic attack that ultimately stops my heart from beating, you’ll be singing a different tune.

Who will be sorry then?

You, obviously; I won’t be sorry because I will be dead.

Which will make for another shitty day, no doubt.

Wednesday, January 06, 2010

God, I Miss My Hair Stylist

A few days ago, the woman who cuts Hugh’s hair graciously agreed to cut the Man-Cub’s hair. We hadn’t had it cut in quite some time and he was rocking a pretty good skater vibe which is all fine and dandy except; wrestling season starts soon and having Jesus-locks might allow his opponents to get a good grip. Needless to say; it was time for a cut.

Unfortunately, I was absent during the actual appointment and, when the Man-Cub pleaded for some length, Hugh compromised by instructing the poor woman to cut the front and top but to leave some length in the back, resulting in….a mullet.

Ok, maybe not a full-on NASCAR mullet but, still; not a look I would have approved had I been there. Luckily, my own recent struggles with an outgrown style have made me quite adept at fashioning a passable style from an unfortunate haircut and, with a bit of gel pilfered from Hugh’s cabinet, we wrestled the Cub’s hair into…a much nicer mullet.

Not a miracle worker here, people.

Once I get off my lazy ass and find a new stylist, we will remedy the hillbilly hair situation, in the meantime, I have given the Cub permission to chew tobacco, drink cheap beer and to date his cousins.

I did, however, draw the line at letting him put the front porch up on cinderblocks; we sported that look during the Remodel from Hell and I just can’t bring myself to go there, again.

Tuesday, January 05, 2010

Back on the Merry Go-Round

The kids started school again today which is code for I started Chauffeuring Again, Today. My first assignment was getting the children to class this morning by 7:45, followed by picking the Man-Cub up at Boys & Girls Club after school and picking The Teenager up after basketball practice. I’m rounding out the day with a trip to Boy Scouts with the Cub and a quick jaunt in to town to take The Teenager to the Hellmouth for art supplies.

Tomorrow, I get to do it all again, minus the trip to the Hellmouth but with the addition of an six AM basketball practice, an after-school trip to the dentist (The Teenager) and a run to the home of the Man-Cub’s tutor.

I’m really looking forward to later this month when we add basketball games and Sunday volleyball practices and volleyball tournaments in Neighboring City (The Teenager has been invited to play on a Gold Cup Team, yay, Girl!) not to mention next month when we add wrestling to the schedule because, I loooove spending my life in my car; it’s easier to clean than my house and, have I mentioned there are butt warmers in my seat? Butt warmers make it all worthwhile.

In other news, I ran four miles on the treadmill today. If you had told me a month ago that I would be running for exercise and enjoying it, I would have asked you what you were smoking. As it is, I really do love it and, what you smoke is your business.

Plus, the running will get my ass into good enough shape to prevent it from going totally flat during all that sitting around in my car.

You know, theoretically.

Monday, January 04, 2010

January 4th, Already? This Year is Just Flying By

Four days in and it’s time to go back to work and, by work, I mean to the place of my employment, not work as in physical labor because; I physically worked my ass off the first four days of this year, already.

1) I cooked a fab New Year’s Eve meal consisting of my two least favorite food groups; crustaceans and grazers (that’s steak and crab legs to you carnivores out there) and I managed the herculean feat of keeping my eyelids open long enough to see in the New Year (if you ignore the brief nap I accidentally took while Hugh and the kids were watching Ice Age 3 and, I do).

2) I packed up the car with enough provisions to last a family larger than ours in case of an actual emergency, drove to the local ice park, unpacked said provisions and supervised our annual sledding/snowboarding trip, repacked the car (minus less provisions than one might hope a family would have consumed during a five hour sledding/snowboarding trip), drove home, unpacked and reorganized one beeelion pairs of boots, gloves, hats, ski bibs, thermal undergarments plus enough left-over snacks to see us through to next year.

3) I spent several hours (otherwise known as a day and a half) dismantling my Christmas village, Christmas tree, outdoor Christmas decorations and storing the boxes away in the attic.

4) Fell off the attic ladder once (bruises! Contusions! No broken bones!).

5) Cleaned and reorganized my house and,

6) refereed fights between siblings who need to go back to school, like, yesterday.

To say that I am ready to go back to “work” seems like a misnomer.

It’s going to be a loooong year.