Thursday, November 21, 2013

Packing a Parka...

I'm on a rotating schedule for work travel.  When my turn comes up, I can go, or decline and hope the next city is better.  We get a limited number of declines on each rotation so it's a gamble.

I declined Indiana because... it's Indiana.

The new cycle was just announced...

Anckorage Alaska

In January

I  might die.

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Awesome Filth...

My mom has always stressed the importance of spending a little more money to buy quality items.  She'd rather spend $80 on a nice skirt than have eight $10 ones that fall apart quickly.

I drive a Kia and 90% of my wardrobe is from Target.

I'm not a good listener.

Naturally, my decision when purchasing a vacuum was no exception.  I started off the right place.  I asked her for advice on where to buy a fancy machine but as soon as I saw the $600 price tag, I reverted to my old cheap ways.

She also said, "Under NO circumstances should you buy a bagless vacuum.  They're terrible!!"

I brought home a $140 bagless vacuum.

My mom would be so proud.

I pulled my plastic sensation out of the box and started vacuuming, fully expecting the thing to start smoking.  Off it went, working my carpet into a tizzy, filling the clear plastic bin with dirt... and filling... and filling.. and filling.  Geez!  How filthy are my floors!?!?

I finally finished, the dirt and hair well above the 'MAX FILL LINE', and opened the container to put it into the trash. There was so much dirt packed in the container, I had to pull it out with my hands.  This was....


Bagless versions are the Biore Pore Strips of vacuum cleaners.

Being Obsessive Compusive, I haven't felt this satisfied after vacuuming since I figured out how to make checkerboard patterns on the carpet like an MLB groundskeeper.

Well mom, I'm sorry, but you're wrong.  I can support your $200 purses but you've got vacuum cleaners all wrong.  I've got quite the love affair with my $140 vacuum...

even if I have to replace it 4 times in the next six months.

Friday, November 1, 2013

I've made the switch...

There's a time in all our lives when we move from dressing like the cool hip young adults we were to...dressing like uncool moms.  Sure, there are exceptions like my sisters (ugh. I hate them) but most of us?  Yeah.  We make the switch.

It doesn't happen overnight.  It takes years.  But you realize it's happening the moment you walk into the Juniors department at Macy's (or the rich folks who shop in Brass Plum at Nordy's) and think most of the clothes are ugly.  Then, trying to force yourself into being cool, you try on the clothes anyway and can't get them to fit because 'mom' shaped bodies can't squish into those skinny jeans.

And to all those stupid pictures on Facebook of half dressed moms with the byline, "I've had 8 kids and I'm a size 2!", I'd like to actually meet those women...

so I could punch them in the face.

Yes, I too weigh exactly what I did before my boys were born but you don't see me posting those photos.  Mostly because I can't get my flap of saggy stomach skin or my boobs, now located at my waist, to smile for the camera.

Chris and I wanted to have professional photos done for our Christmas cards this year and I was desperate to find an outfit.  This was made difficult because a) I have a disease called 'mom body' and b) I have $16 in my checking account.

I figured I'd find something in Forever 21 because a) from what I recall from shopping there prior to baby no. 1, they have cute clothes and b) because they have shirts for less than $16.

There is nothing cute in Forever 21.

I am so uncool.

I nearly went to the checkout, begged for mercy, and asked them to dress me.  I had two choices: a) ask an 18 year old with piercings to dress me or b)  spend 5 bucks at Rubio's on a burrito, breathing in the precious few child free minutes, and digging a 10 year old dress out of my closet.

The burrito was delicious.

I've totally turned into my mom.

Screw it.  I'm pulling out a glittered, puffy painted christmas sweater and calling it a day.

Sunday, October 27, 2013

The Guatemalan...

I didn't get a Guatemalan nanny like I had hoped. My sister took the job as caretaker to my two little ones.

It seemed like a good idea.


The problem? There's nothing as good as reliable family watching your kids.  Especially when they both love and adore her.  BUT, now all I worry about is her quitting - leaving to work another job to make the money she deserves rather than the limited funds I can afford to pay her.

She took the boys to the zoo last week and said she needed to leave at 11:30.  "Why?" I asked.

"I need to prepare the boys for nap time at noon.  We can only do trips out of the house between 9AM and 11AM.  I have them on a schedule."

The only schedule I could manage was a nap sometime between 9 am and 4 pm.

On weekends, at precisely noon, both boys fall asleep wherever they are.  It's like a little timer goes off in their brains and out they go.  Even when she's not here, it's easier since they run like a well oiled ship...or however the saying goes.

I tried to tell her where the ‘timeout’ corner was.  “I don’t need a timeout corner” she said. At first I was flattered, thinking my boys must be magically well behaved while I’m not home, then she finished, “Because I can put the fear of God into them with one look."

Cash was throwing a ball in the house and she said, "Stop" and shot the look.  He dropped the ball and walked away.

Must. Master. That. Look.

In my world, I have to say stop 47 times, beg, plead, resort to time outs, then finally just ignore the fact that he's still throwing the ball.

Let's not even talk about the fact that Declan slept through the night on his first try and has never woken up during the night since.  I think she sprinkles fairy dust in his room.

Sooooo.  Like I said.  It's not so great.  It’s like dating a really hot guy when you are 40 pounds overweight with acne scars and frizzy hair.  You enjoy the relationship but you’re always worried he’ll leave you for Kate Upton.

So do me a favor.  Don’t tell my sister how awesome she is.  I don’t want her to know.

Monday, September 30, 2013

Halloween Woes...

Chris has been asking to do Star Wars themed costumes for three years now.  Cash would be Yoda, Chris would be Hans Solo, and I would be...

Princess Leia.


While I've been able to fight off his idea for quite some time, my brother is having a party this year and has asked if Declan can come as...



Off I go to Amazon.

Hans Solo costume.  Check.

Princess Leia costume.  Check. (And no, not the Princess Leia Jabba the Hut Slave one you pervs.  I just had a kid.  I'd look like Jabba the Hut who ATE Princess Leia)

Ewok costume.  Check.

Yoda.  Check.

Check Out.  Click.

Chris leans over my shoulder. "Where's my gun?  My costume comes with a gun right?"

"The gun is $13.  Can't you go without it?" I ask.

Chris looks at me like I just asked Michael Knight to show up without Kitt.

Gun.  Check.

"And my holster.  Where is the holster?" he asks.

"Do you really need the holster?!?!"

"No.  I could hold my beer in one hand and the gun in the other buuuuut, that limits the amount of help I can be with the kids if both my hands are full."

Holster.  Check.

"Honey, those stupid accessories pushed your stupid costume to $60.  That's outrageous!  We can't afford that much!"  I griped.

"Sweet!  Looks like we have an excuse to be the Star Wars family for the next THREE years!!" he said with a grin.

I hate Star Wars.  I really HATE Star Wars.

Thursday, September 26, 2013

And the Bad Mom Award Goes To....

Beach camping.

Long days spent on the sand, basking in the sunshine.

My favorite time of year.

Or it was...

until I had a two year old who decided 6AM was an acceptable time to wake up.


Turns out, my internal dialog has a potty mouth when tired.

"Bite mommy!  Candy?" he begged.

He has my number.  My tired, tired number.

I throw a handful of chewy Sprees at him, turn on Curious George on the iPad, and go back to bed.

He silently chews his candy, huge grin on his face, and watches his movie.

His future? Diabetic with bad teeth.  Mine?  Sleep.  Glorious sleep.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

One Kid? Oh yeah!!

My mother in law offered to watch Cash while I finished packing and running errands for our beach camping trip last week.  Shopping with one child somehow feels infinitely easier than shopping with both my boys.  I'm sure shopping with two kids would feel like a vacation if I had three kids and three kids easier if I had four kids...

Hold on, I had to quit laughing at the thought of me having four kids.  I already have a limited grasp on my sanity.  Four kids would seal my fate in a sanitarium.

I forgot how easy errands could be.  Shopping without a two year old is positively delightful.  I had to hold myself back from dancing like Julie Andrews while singing the theme song from The Sound of Music.

It's not that I don't love him, I just don't love shopping with a 34" tall kleptomaniac.

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Breaking and Entering...

Most days, when I empty our trash into the large bins in the front yard, I let Cash accompany me.  I was packing for our camping trip and hadn't gotten around to dress him (or me) and he was shoeless so I decided to leave him inside.  I closed the security screen door behind me saying, "Stay there bub.  Mommy's going to be right back."  I could hear him angrily pounding on the metal door behind me as I tossed the bag into the large bin.

I hurried across my yard, praying none of the neighbors would see my braless nightdress and flip flop combo.  Safely under the porch, I grasped the door handle on the security door and twisted..  and tried to twist again.

Cash had successfully locked me out.

At first, I leaned in, unable to see through the security door, and whispered through the tiny holes, "Hey bub, can you unlock the door for mamma?"

Silence.  Was he even there?

"Buddy?  Mamma needs back inside" I said a little louder.

"Hi Mommy!" I hear him say loudly on the other side of the door.

"Sweetie?  Can you try to twist the lock for mommy?  Pretty please?" I beg.

I hear his chubby fingers play with the door handle "I done no mommy" (I don't know mommy).  He makes another attempt to twist the door and I hear his feet start to walk away.

"Cash buddy, you need to come back right now bub" I try.

His feet pause, then I hear his foot steps as he starts to walk away.

Our street is a hub for morning walkers.  Not a high traffic area, wide sidewalks, safe.  I see a man approaching a little ways away, "CASH IF YOU DON'T GET BACK HERE TO OPEN THIS DOOR RIGHT NOW, I WILL END YOU!!!" I say as quietly and somehow as loudly as possible through gritted teeth into the metal door and then look to the man with his dog to smile and wave, careful to not expose my bralessness.  

I hear Cash's feet come back to the door and then hear the slow creak of our heavy wood front door.


Door slams.


Negotiations are over.

I never leave doors or windows open but there happened (thankfully) to be a wonderful breeze that morning and I remembered I had opened the kitchen window when I woke up.

Now all that was left was to scale a 6 foot fence... in a dress... in flip flops... with no bra... and try not to get caught by the neighbors.

I drag the chair from our front porch over to the fence and attempt to lift myself up 'push up' style like in all the movies.

Apparently I need to do A LOT more push ups.

I throw my leg awkwardly over the fence and shimmy on top of the wall.  Resting for a moment to catch my breath on the ledge, the dogs run over and start barking viciously, like I'm not the one who FEEDS them EVERY DAY!!

I half jump (mostly fall) off the top of the fence onto the concrete dog pad and ungracefully climb into the kitchen window (because I've been SO graceful up to that point).  I angrily march into the living room where Cash is smiling, watching Curious George, eating licorice.

I think he planned the whole thing.

Not sure I'm going to survive the terrible two's with this one...

Monday, September 9, 2013

I'm a 17 Year Old Boy...

Rumor has it, you eat a lot while pregnant.

Yeah.  You do.  But not nearly as much as you do while nursing.  Not only am I nursing, I'm pumping an extra feeding or two a day for my at work stockpile.

It doesn't help that Declan was the size of a 4 month old at 2 months... and continues to grow at a rapid pace.

I eat like a 17 year old boy during hell week.

They say not to grocery shop while hungry.  My 'not hungry' window is approximately 12 1/2 minutes.  Grocery shopping has been quite expensive lately.

I can hardly make it through cooking dinner without jabbing a fork into food still cooking.  I'm thankful I haven't been visited by the salmonella fairy because, yes, there has been a time or two that I've taken a forkful of pink chicken.

9 more months?!?  Looks like I need to adjust our grocery budget... and avoid Costco indefinitely.

Saturday, August 31, 2013


The high heat forced me to take Cash to an indoor gym yesterday.  He loved it, burning gobs of energy on bouncy houses and jungle gyms.  On one side was a concrete skateboard ramp.  Huge signs hung on the wall 'HELMETS REQUIRED'.  I looked at the helmets, then at the kids sporting them.

Potential for head lice?  Pretty good.

As Cash grabbed a toddler bike and headed toward the hill, I debated internally.  Deal with a few days of meds and intense cleaning or a concussion leading to a lifetime of reduced judgement, balance, and memory.

Thankfully he didn't fall.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Five Year Plan...

Every year or so, Chris and I discuss our 5 year plan.  Where do we see our jobs, our family, and our finances going in 5 years.

We decided that one of us needs to be home with the kids in 2 years or less.  Chris paused, stared into the distance, smiled, swirled his beer in his glass and said, "I'd be willing to stay home with the kids if you want to work"

"Really?" I asked.

"Yeah.  I know how much you like working and how driven you are.  My construction work is more flexible anyway.  I can jump in and out anytime I want"  he said, patting my hand.

"Honey, that's really swee.." I started to say before he interrupted, "Plus, your brother is having that pool put in by the summer and I think I can figure out how to squeeze both kids into the Baby Bjorn so I can play golf."

He's. Not. Joking.

Monday, August 26, 2013

Wanted: A Guatemalan...

I'm heading back to work in 4 weeks so Chris and I are searching for a nanny for our boys.

We are looking for someone not too old, not too young, not too fat, not too thin, not too pretty (well, that's my requirement anyway), who doesn't demand lots of money to stay with us.  The only reason Chris and I have stayed in a committed marriage for as long as we have is because dating sucks.  Now here we are, holding large glasses of therapeutic wine, staring at a computer screen, searching hundreds of women's profiles hoping to find someone to love us and our kids.  This is so much worse than dating.

I think it would be easier to find a sister wife than a good nanny.  Unfortunately Chris says his hands are full dealing with me and can't imagine 'adding more estrogen' to the household.  Thanks?

Whenever I find the seemingly perfect woman, she's snatched up by another family or is too far out of my price range for consideration.  This has resulted in lots and lots of crying.


Which may be the reason behind the estrogen comment.

We know a family who found a wonderful Guatemalan whose legal status is a little fuzzy. For 1200 a month, she takes care of the kids, does light housekeeping, and has dinner started by the time they get home.  I've changed my stance on illegal immigration.

Fortunately my sister is considering stepping in to save the day.  She hasn't fully committed yet but I think that's mostly because I've been a little vague on the whole 'compensation' issue.  Turns out, aunties won't work for hugs.  Especially not hugs from my 2 year old who enjoys using his own excrement as finger paint.

Excuse me.  I need more therapeutic wine...and possibly a Guatemalan.

Monday, August 12, 2013

Bleep it!!

Cash has been doing a great job letting me know when he has to use the restroom.  The other night, while I was eating dinner and nursing Declan, Cash rushed to me saying, "Poo poo mommy!" and ran toward the bathroom.

I hurriedly set everything down, rested Declan on the sofa, and ran to the bathroom.  Unfortunately, I didn't make it.

 Frustrated with myself for not being quick enough, I slipped and said, "Aw damn it!"

Cash looked down at the mess at repeated, "Aw damn it!"

The kid can't say his own name clearly, calls my parents 'ama' and 'apa', but can say 'damn it' with perfect clarity.


Wednesday, August 7, 2013

I Spent $104,000 for This?

Chris watched the Justin Timberlake video, Mirrors, and told me to take a look.  "It's really moving" he said.

I watched it.  An old dude. An old chick. Some young dudes. Young chicks.  Runny mascara.

Chris started talking about symbolism and it representing turbulent and joyous times and passing on a legacy.

"You spent a ton on film school, I'm sure you understand this better than me. What did you think about it?" he asked.

I said I had to use the restroom and quickly Googled, 'meaning of justin timberlake mirrors video'

Coincidentally, that's exactly how I graduated film school...

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Tic Tac Child Abuse...

On Sunday, Cash pointed at the toilet and asked to use it.  Chris set him on the seat, and Cash promptly pooped.  Thoroughly ecstatic at the thought we could be lazy parents and still have a potty trained child, Chris gave Cash a fruit Tic Tac as a reward.

Cash immediately ran back to the toilet and tried to poop again.

And tried.

And tried.

His face turning bright red from exertion.

"All done bud." Chris said as he pulled him from the seat.

Cash started to cry, holding onto the toilet, screaming, "CANDY CANDY CANDY!!"

Since then, Cash asks to get onto the toilet at least 50 times a day.

I going have the only 2 year old with hemorrhoids.

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

An hour or so...

Since I'm at home with both kidlets on maternity leave, I've been making dinner each night, cleaning the house, washing the clothes, 'general housewifey' stuff that is pretty much foreign to my normal 'uber tired work wifey just order a friggin pizza' stuff.

I was quite proud of myself as I chopped veggies and placed chicken into a marinating baking bag for dinner yesterday morning.

Tuesday's are also trash days and I didn't want the smell of chicken fat to reek up the house so I cleaned the kitchen and ran the garbage to the container on the street before the trash truck arrived.

In my efforts to have a spotless kitchen, I accidentally threw away the directions for the chicken... the important part like how long to cook it.

I have NO idea how long to cook chicken.

Chris and Cash take a swim class in the evenings and before they left I asked, "Hey hon, how long do you cook chicken at like, 350ish?"

"Uhh.  An hour or so?" Chris said while running out the door.

Hey.  So.  You DON'T cook a chicken breast and three small thighs for an 'hour or so'.

But, I got to use that new Domino's app on my phone...

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Pass the Nestle Crunch Bar...

While pregnant with Cash, I worked out the entire pregnancy.  I ran, I did yoga, I did sit ups.  Even while on work trips, I brought workout videos.  I gained 30 pounds.

After he was born, I jumped right into working out.  A full week hadn't gone by and I was logging in the miles on my jogging stroller.  After several weeks, I had dropped all but 10 pounds and was happy.

Baby number 2?  Didn't work out.  Not even once.

Total weight gain? 23 pounds.

Post delivery, I dined almost entirely on Hershey Nuggets and cherry Coke.  Exercise?  Sure.  If you count going to the grocery store to buy more nuggets and Coke as a workout.

I've got 4 pounds before I hit my pre-pregnancy weight.

There is a God.

My Own Guantanamo?

Sorry for the lack of updates.



No one tells you that kids (plural) are awesome...

and you'll seemingly never sleep again.

For your first, every moment is special.  Sure you don't sleep at night, but you nap together during the day.  You spend your waking moments treasuring those tiny fingers and toes. You stare endlessly into those beautiful new eyes.

With number two?  Dear Lord.  All you want is sleep.

Detainees at Guantanamo underwent sleep depravation for up to 72 hours...

I'm thinking of moving there.  Sounds like a spa day.

I called my sister (mother of 4) and asked, "Please tell me it gets easier"


"No" she responded seriously.

Do you know what you should never tell a mother to a 2 year old and a newborn?!?!!?  That it will never get easier than right at this moment. The moment both kids are screaming at the top of their lungs and the house looks like an alien baby has puked everywhere.  The moment when you put on shoes INSIDE your house, not to protect your floors... but to protect your feet from cheerios, dog food, and yesterday's dinner that your toddler threw because he didn't like it.  The moment you haven't showered since, since, since...hmm, when did I shower last??  The moment when you are listening to the 249th viewing of Calliou and can't recall the last adult show you got to watch.  The moment when you just got back from Costco after buying $150 in diapers and 15 frozen pizzas because that's the best you can do for dinner these days (hence the dinner throwing incident). The moment when your husband walks in the door and asks "What did you do all day!?!?" when staring at the messy house and your fingers twitch reaching for the cleaver.  The moment when euriheurnqeiughjvniuomneuheuithn zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz.............

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

On His Own...

Chris went out on his own.  'Accidentally' quit his job, and decided to become his own boss.

I was 'supportive' of course.  Supportive as in...

"We're going to die!  We'll never make it!  We have no stability!"... followed by a six week crying fit.

What?!?  I'm a girl.  I was pregnant.  That's called a normal Tuesday night.

Just as I expected, Chris has not made as much money as he normally makes.

He's made more.

Imagine my disappointment.

What!?!?  I hate being wrong more than I love success.

Turns out, hard work and honesty are valued commodities in construction and word travels fast... really fast.  He's booked for 4 months.  He can't even sign new work unless they are willing to wait...and they are.

And the most annoying part?  He's happy.  And he enjoys what he's doing.

Don't worry.  I'm looking for ways to sabotage him.  In the meantime, I wish he'd wipe that grin off is face.  It's so darn annoying.

Monday, June 24, 2013

Child Bearing Hips...

I know I'm a 'curvaceous' lady.  That's a nice way of saying... I've got hips.

Sure, I'm no Kim Kardashian - I'm only 130 pounds, but most of those pounds reside sound of my navel.

I've always been bothered by my body shape.  I can't wear 'boyfriend' jeans or pencil skirts.  My body was made for 1950's style and I was born 50 years too late.

I just gave birth to our second son two weeks ago.  Two weeks before that, my doctor did a regular OB exam and said, 'You will have a very easy birth.  Your body was made to have babies.'

'Are you trying to say I have 'child bearing hips'?' I asked.



Baby Declan was out in 2 pushes.


He was born in less than 60 seconds.

My doctor patted my leg and said, "What did I tell you!?  You were created to have babies!!"

I have hated my body my whole life.  Hated everything about it.  But when, for the second time, you are able to have a worry free pregnancy and storybook delivery... I find myself grateful that God didn't create this body for the runway.

He made the two most important days of my life, the most wonderful moments.  These tractor trailer hips, for once, were good for something, the very, very best thing.  Bringing life into the world.

Cheers to the tractor trailers. Cheers to the pear shapes.  Somehow you made up for 33 years of hating you in two very special moments.

Welcome to the world Declan James.

So very glad to meet you...

in 60 seconds.

Monday, May 20, 2013


Chris started his own business last week.  He quit his 9-5 and decided to go on his own.

Naturally I'm supportive...

when I'm not crying and screaming, "I've got no security!!"

Come on now.  Before you judge, remember I am 8 months pregnant.  Sure, we saved a cushion but... there is no cushion big enough to make a woman who is 8 months pregnant sleep well at night.

I wake up in the middle of the night screaming marketing ideas, "Ice cream trucks with your name on the side!!!"

What?  I didn't say they were good ideas.  And it's not my fault my 2 AM marketing ideas  tie into cravings.

Chris didn't think the chocolate covered signs were a good idea either.

The man simply has no taste.

I've been more frugal than normal - which is difficult since I already feel Top Ramen is over budget.

He's a hard worker.  He's a bright man.  He's honest.  All things people value in a contractor.  I'm sure it will work out...

if I can convince him to buy those carmel business cards...

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

I'd like a side of butter for my side of butter...

I have some beautiful friends.  Stunning women.  Women who haven't purchased their own drinks... ever.

Their beauty comes at a price.  Their tiny 110 pound bodies a result of their ability to turn down french fries and pick up vegetables.  Naturally when we all gathered for a bachelorette party, a special dinner out was no exception.

"Can I have the grilled Halibut?  Substitute the potatoes for asparagus and hold the cream sauce. No butter on the asparagus."

"Grilled chicken.  Just the chicken.  No sides.  No sauce."

"Baked Mahi Mahi.  No cream sauce. And a vodka tonic.  Those don't have any calories right?"

And around the table it went. The waiter slowly losing patience as no one ordered according to the chef's careful selections.

I sat at the end of the table.  145 pounds. 7 months pregnant.  Absolutely zero desire to waste my girls night out on grilled anything.

"And what can I get for you?" the waiter asked.

"I'll take the braised short ribs.  Keep the mashed potatoes, add an extra scoop of the garlic butter." I said as I slapped the menu onto the table.

There was a pause, then he started laughing.  Not a polite snicker.  Nooooo.  Full bellied laughter.

Someone did not get a tip from me that night.

How fabulous were those potatoes?  I wouldn't know.  When eight 110 pound women want 'just a bite or two', not much is left for the pregnant lady.

Monday, April 22, 2013

You can thank me...

We received one of those Nielsen surveys in the mail last week.  Nielsen ratings help determine the popularity of shows, decide which shows will continue... and which shows will be cancelled. The survey requested one viewer be chosen to represent the household.

Naturally, I chose myself.

Judy Judge, the Kardashians, and the Real Housewives of Orange County can all thank me.

To everyone with taste... I'm sorry.

Thursday, March 21, 2013


Chris did some handyman work for a woman in her 40's last week.  He spent 4 hours changing lightbulbs, making adjustments to her stove, changing the batteries in her smoke detector, etc.  The woman didn't have any of the tools to complete the work... and lacked the know how to get the jobs done.  Chris came home a little frustrated and said, "Every woman should know how to do this stuff.  She shouldn't rely on a man to do these types of jobs.  If anything ever happened to me, I'm glad you could take care of this stuff yourself."

"Uh... Yeah hon, totally.  No problemo."  I responded and gave him a thumbs up.

Hello?  Did he really just make that statement to me?  The girl who asks him to change the toilet paper roll because it "hurts my fingers"? The girl who doesn't even know where the fire alarm is much less how to change the batteries?

I didn't have the heart to tell him if anything were to happen to him, I'd have to marry a new guy...

before the toilet paper ran out.

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Oh THAT little thing?!?

I had to interview for a month long jury trial several weeks ago.  The attorneys asked we all fill out a 10 page questionnaire.  Normally, I knock these things out of the park.  I'm the kind of person you want on your jury and I love jury service.   I breezed through the first half and then stumbled upon...

"Have you ever been accused of a crime?"


More than 10 years ago, my mother, brothers, and I were accused of vandalism, racist vandalism, and terrorist acts.  My name was dropped off in the very early stages but my brothers and mother had to fight it out in court.  The case was thrown out, we were innocent and the accuser was a complete nut job (my parents later sued and won for malicious litigation)... BUT... there's this little thing called 'public record' that demands I answer this question honestly.

I answered the question, making sure to point out that we were found not-guilty, but I wasn't selected to serve.

Disappointed, I called my mom who also was called to jury service this month, "Hey mom,  I didn't get selected on the jury.  I think it's the fact that I was asked if I've been accused of a crime and I can't avoid the fact that we were accused of racism and terrorism.  What do you answer to that question?"

 My mother was silent.


"Ummmm" she says.

"You say 'No' don't you?  Mom!  It's ACCUSED, not convicted.  The answer is YES!" I yell.

"I kinda...forgot."


"OK, so, next time I'll remember" she says.


Mother.  Mother.  Mother.

Friday, February 15, 2013

M is for Miscarriage...

I've started this post a hundred times.  Not sure what I was willing to share with perfect strangers.  My delete key has been overused.  But writing has always been cathartic for me.  My own personal therapy.  It's an itch I've got to scratch.  So here it is...


Something that happens to other people.

Not me.

Please God.

Not me.

I took a pregnancy test before we left for vacation.  I didn't think I was pregnant but I was bored and have an industrial supply of tests in my nightstand.

And there it was.

Two bright pink lines.

Chris walked around the house with a perma-grin.  We radiated excitement.  This would be our secret.  We didn't want to tell anyone for a few weeks.  Just enjoy the moment together.

Four days into our camping vacation, at 4:30 am in the quiet of our rented trailer, I woke up.  Something was off.  Something was wrong.  I stood up and felt warmth trickle down my leg.  I clicked on the light and a pool of blood had formed on the floor.

Cash woke from the glare of the light and started crying.  I picked him up, gave him to my sleeping husband and whispered, "I'm having a miscarriage.  Will you walk me to the bathroom?"

He pulled on his shirt and we walked.  He kept saying, "It's OK hon.  Everything will be OK."  I was silent except for the grainy shuffle of my flip-flops against the walking path.

I knew it wasn't OK.

I cried in the dirty stall.  The kind of crying so deep, you can't seem to catch a breath.  

I cleaned up and met Chris, who had been waiting outside, Cash sleeping in his arms.  I see the hopeful look on his face.  The look that says, "You were mistaken right?  Everything is OK?"  But even in the darkness, he can see the puffiness of my eyes, and his expression changes to sadness.

We changed Cash into his swim trunks and walked barefoot in the sand, watching the sun come up.  We walked until my feet ached, then sat down to watch the waves crash.  Chris gently rubbed my back while Cash shoved handfuls of sand in his mouth.  He smiled and spit the sand out, his teeth covered in sticky brown goo.  He was pleased with himself and Chris and I couldn't help but chuckle through our tears.

I struggled through the rest of the camping trip, and continued to struggle after we came home.  Was I grieving too much for this whisper of a life?  When so many women have passed through this door of loss, my sisters included, why did I feel so alone? And the most haunting, the thought that maybe, somehow, I had caused it.  Did I eat the wrong thing?  Did I lift something wrong?

I've discovered that grief exposes the person you never thought you were capable of being.  I became the ugliest version of myself.

Chris' grief exposed a man I didn't know I married.  We've been through tough times, bad finances, and job loss.  But those things can be worked at and fixed.  Grief.  Well.  That's different.

He became the best version of himself. It was as if he was patiently, with quiet strength, picking up every piece of our shattered hearts and gluing them back together.

He let me parade the ugly version of myself around the house for over a month then told me I needed to stop.  We needed to move on.  I can grieve, but I can't be mean anymore.  And he was right.

Five months later, I struggle now and then.  Something will remind me and I get knocked off my feet for a moment but the old me is back.  I know it still bothers Chris at times too.  He'll mention something, get quiet, then move on.  But he never went back to being himself.  He came through a little stronger.  A little shinier.  Turns out, he weathers storms well.

Not long after we lost our little one, we got two more pink lines but... that's another story for a different day.

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

The Poop Troop...

Cash and I were enjoying the day off last Monday, soaking up the late afternoon sunshine in the backyard.  The dogs had destroyed a cardboard box and paper was scattered across the yard.  Cash seems to thrive when given helpful tasks rather than no direction at all.  I walked him around the yard and gave him paper to throw in the trash.  He got the hang of it quickly so I tried to hurriedly pick up the little piles of dog poop while he was distracted.  I pushed all the poo into a pile, keeping an eye on Cash.  He was wiggling and waddling all over the yard, giggling and squealing while throwing handfuls of trash into his own pile.

I was making killer progress on my poo pile.

Or so I thought.

I scooped another lump and looked up to check the progress of my little man.  He carefully picked up a scrap of paper in one hand and poop with the other.  Before I could yell, he threw the paper in the trash and added the poo to my pile, looking at me with sheer satisfaction.

"AHHHHH!  Noooo!" I yelled.

His lip started to quiver and tears started falling.

Bad mom had hurt his feelings.

"Oh honey, mamma's sorry.  Good job" I said while scooping him up in my arms.  "I love you bubba.  I'm sorry"

His eyes still full of tears, he wrapped his arms around my neck, poop getting on my shirt.

Ah. Ugh.  Gag.

After a thorough scrubbing - and shirt disposal - we settled on sharing an ice cream... because we all know, ice cream fixes everything.

No more poop scooping around the little man.


Saturday, January 19, 2013

Bark. Bark.

I've got a great guy.  He's thoughtful, selfless, caring...and on and on.  Sounds wonderful right?

Let me explain why it isn't.

A couple months back, he started swinging by the local ice cream shop on his way home and picking up a scope of ice cream for Cash and me.  He doesn't do it often, only about once a month, but it's enough to create in me...

Pavlov's Dog.

He calls when he leaves work, "Hey babe, I'm on my way home.  See you soon.  Love you."

My stomach starts to grumble.

My mouth starts to water.

I smell the phantom scent of creamy goodness.

I hear his keys in the lock and...

29 days out of 30, his hands are empty.  But my brain refuses to acknowledge that the 29 ice cream free days exist.

We can't afford to eat ice cream everyday - and my waistline doesn't need it, but I can't handle the bundle of nerves I have become.  I'm feel like screaming, "WHERE'S MY FRIGGIN' ICE CREAM OLD MAN?!?!?!?" Every. Single. Day.

Why did I listen to my mother?  I shouldn't have married him.  There are plenty of jerks out there.  I couldn't pick one of them?!?  What was I thinking!?!?!

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

This is leather?

Chris and I had decided to wait to purchase a larger vehicle until we saved more cash but when the engine started to sputter on the 'silver beast', the registration arrived in the mail and the smog was due, we changed our minds.

We shopped around on a very rainy December 31st.  I explained what I wanted and what I was willing to pay.  "Would you like leather?" the salesman asked.

"How much extra is that?"

He pulled out his invoice and pointed at the addition.

I coughed.  Sometimes I forget how cheap the Koreans make cars.

We got the leather.  I'm fairly certain the only animal who lost skin for me was a yak.  Cows just ain't that cheap.

The car also has an 'ECO' light that illuminates when you drive 'green'.  If you don't accelerate too quickly, brake suddenly, and sit idling your engine for 20 minutes while applying a final layer of mascara before work, the light comes on. It's supposed to alleviate the guilt some feel because they drive an SUV (I feel none of this guilt).

I have seen this light illuminated once...

while Chris was driving.

Even my car tells me I'm bad for the planet.

I love the car.  It's great.  Yak and all.