Monday, January 31, 2011

Valuing our time together - despite every plan I had to make it perfect

Hubs and I planned a pre-Valentine's day weekend away with my mom to take the baby.

I told him that I'd take the helm on planning this one - as he planned the last (haunted) one -- and I need to catch up on sleep with this trip.

Super secretly, I chose to head north (yes, in winter) for our weekend.

Four winds casino is about an hour from my mom's house. We'd be close to a few of our favorite haunts -- and the restaurant I fell in love with last year.  I even landed a deal of a whirlpool room at a nearby hotel! SA-WEET!

Friday, January 28, 2011

Waving good-bye

Some people have the luxury of staying at home with their children. By luxury, I'm referring to the opportunity and not the lap in which a SAHM or SAHD sits.

I, although I did try my damnedest, am not that fortunate.

I drive the 15 miles into town twice a day and back to leave my daughter at day care.  Yes, I work at home - but that doesn't give me an extra set of hands, another brain, and four times the energy to work 50+ hours a week AND chase a toddler.

Go ahead - judge me for my decision to not work through the night and be exhausted while I half-assed care for my kid. I tried it. Nobody wins. I'm secure in my choice. It didn't work for our family. If you can do it, and not land yourself in the looney bin - fantastic for you and your family!

Thursday, January 27, 2011

My cup runneth over...and over...could someone grab me a towel -- GEEZE

My head is spinning. I've been so busy these last few weeks I really don't know if I'm coming or going.  Once again, I've committed to more side projects - personal and professional - that are filling every waking moment of every day.

I like to be busy, but lordy, it wears on a girl.

I got a new phone 2 weeks ago and still have yet to program any numbers into it.  I've been that busy.

Monday, January 24, 2011

If given a box, what would you have made??

Stop for one moment.

When you had the opportunity to play by yourself as a child - say between the ages of 8 and 11 - what did you do?  When given the "world is your oyster" opportunity, what was your default?  When your imagination was not hindered by compromising with siblings or friends - where did it wander??  What did you dream? If given a box, what would you have made?

When I was in high school, the guidance counselor had us each take a career assessment to help guide us on what professional careers we should pursue based on our interests.  Living in a Chicago suburb, I was mortified to find that my recommended career field was in Agriculture.  Mortified.

They were right, in a sense - as I have not one, but two College of Agriculture degrees.  I digress.

Asking those simple questions with which I started this post would have more directly led me to my field of choice.

My brother is 2 years younger than me. We played together a lot. A LOT. A LOT!  But there were times when we went our separate ways, and in those moments I would play:
  1. School - I loved to play teacher and help students with math homework. There was no such thing as a stupid question.
  2. Nature Hikes - I used to lead pretend hikes in my backyard describing the trees, plants and animals I saw. If I could coax him from his flower garden, I would take my neighbor Grandpa Charlie (~70 at the time) on those hikes once I got my route and topics planned.
  3. Form-Filler-Outer - I would make forms like Name:______ Address:_______ Age:______, etc... and then fill it out.  Sometimes I would ask my mom to make the forms to see if I could fill out anything she asked.
  4. House - with several children including an ugly child (I borrowed bro's My Pet Monster for that) just to show that I could and would love no matter what. (What kind of messed up child was I??)

Sunday, January 23, 2011

I need a bubble bath evening - Stream of Consciousness Sunday

It's Stream of Consciousness Sunday - Hosted by It’s five minutes of your time and a brain dump. Want to try it? Here are the rules…
  • Set a timer and write for 5 minutes only.
  • Write an intro to the post if you want but don’t edit the post. No proofreading or spellchecking. This is writing in the raw.
  • Publish it somewhere. Anywhere. The back door to your blog if you want. But make it accessible.
  • Add the Stream of Consciousness Sunday badge to your post.
  • Link up your post here.
  • Visit your fellow bloggers and show some love.

It's dark in the living room. Quiet and dark. We had a great party yesterday - baloons, streamers, surprised stepson half to dealth! It was great!! The kids played pin the glasses on harry potter...ate two types of homemade kcake, and the sprizes diddn't suck either. It made me feel like I've still got a sense of what it takes to be "in" or "hip" or "cool" or whatever the hell it's called these days... Now, today, I must reclaim my house - from the party and from myself. Too many piles of clothes in my room - too many sizes.  Goodwill is getting my shit, like it or not! I've been so busy in the evenings with cleaning or managing Hub's music project or prepping for the party that I'm just zapped. And now it's tax time. That's one more night of my life. THen they are mine again - to whittle away on Facebook and Twitter and blogs, just like I like them. Ok, time's up - must go begin my day. Happy Sunday.


Friday, January 21, 2011

8 week weigh in

This is my final weigh-in for the 8 week fitness program.

If you want to know more about what I've been up to - see the Fitness Journey link to the right.

I could tell you that I feel great.
I could tell you that I lost 14lbs, 4 inches off my hips and 3 inches off my waist.
I could tell you that this is the proudest I've been of myself in a long time.
I could tell you that I have seen changes I could never have imagined.
I could tell you that these last 8 weeks have transformed me into a better person - inside and out.
I could tell you that I've given myself the best 30th birthday present EVER!

But I won't.

I'll let the pictures do the talking...

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Turn that frown upside down

I have always taken things very personally.  VERY.

But you all know that about me.

When I was about 10 I was dealing with a bully at school.

My mom, ever the musical fanatic, sang me the song "I'm gonna wash that man right outta my hair" from South Pacific, but instead of "that man" she said "that girl" referring to the bully.  Then told me to go take a shower.

Ploy to have her daughter bathe or not - the lesson stuck.

Although I have gone through phases of the extent to which I remember that lesson, when negative happens I want take a shower.  The choice, then, is to decide to not talk to myself and make the situation worse - and actually choose to let whatever it is wash down the drain.

Yes, at times, I also eat my negativity away.  That is a staple move for me.  A challenge of working from home is that even if I get a nasty email - the fridge or snack cabinet is mere steps away.  And, hell, if I can't find anything - I can BAKE something to eat.

Move over negativity - and entire bowl of cookie dough is on its way!

Recently, I've tried to make a negative into a positive.  If I get frustrated or mad about work (especially) or other things - I run it off.  I get on the treadmill and go to town.

It works, too!  By the time I'm done - I'm gasping and wheezing and don't have the energy to be pissed (much).

Don't get me wrong - these are the usual steps I take when I get frustrated...
  1. Trigger point: read email, end phone call, read questionable blog comment...whatever...
  2. Get up from desk and head to kitchen
  3. Stand in cool air of fridge cursing the fact that I still don't have anything good to eat here ever.
  4. Close fridge - check snack cabinet, repeat step 3.
  5. Choose to go back to the office because I don't need to eat.
  6. Re-read email, comment, notes from call.
  7. Get back up and head to kitchen.
  8. Make u-turn in kitchen.
  9. Return to office, blast workout music, and get on treadmill.
I admit, it isn't the most efficient system - but I'm working on it!  I still enjoy the showers, but one can only take SO many showers in a day, y'all!

A couple FYIs -- 

Monday, January 17, 2011

...And Nobody Told Me

I am foregoing my Monday post to announce the launch of

This is a collaborative mom blog (yes, I'll be contributing) that addresses the parts of parenthood that were graciously - or not - omitted from discussions before you became a mom...

Now, go to that site and check it out!  Shoo!  (Tell your friends, too!)

 Motherhood is a secret society, you’re already a member.

You can follow And Nobody Told Me on Facebook and Twitter.

Also, if you're not following me on Facebook and Twitter - you totally should do that while you're at it!

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Surprise for the hardly surpriseable - Stream of Consciousness Sunday

It's Stream of Consciousness Sunday - Hosted by It’s five minutes of your time and a brain dump. Want to try it? Here are the rules…
  • Set a timer and write for 5 minutes only.
  • Write an intro to the post if you want but don’t edit the post. No proofreading or spellchecking. This is writing in the raw.
  • Publish it somewhere. Anywhere. The back door to your blog if you want. But make it accessible.
  • Add the Stream of Consciousness Sunday badge to your post.
  • Link up your post here.
  • Visit your fellow bloggers and show some love.

So much to little time.

We're working on getting the house whipped into shape. Next weekend is the surprise birthday party for my stepson - he'll be 11.  He suspects nothing.  I'm stoked to do something gradeouse for the guy - he's a fantastic kid.  We took him to Wyoming last summer with him only knowning we'd be gone for a week - no ideas where until we got OFF the plan in Montana and had my Aunt and Cousin picking us up.  The smile on his face was FANTASTIC. 

Friday, January 14, 2011

Sometimes, you just have to do it

I vowed that on this website will would remain as apolitical and agnostic as I can possibly stand. I don’t know who you voted for or care who you pray to (or if you pray). If you want to know what I did – or do, I’ll gladly say – I just don’t think those are appropriate fodder for a Mom blog – at least mine.

I heard a report on NPR about the US Military doing spirituality fitness assessments. If you haven't heard or read about this, please visit the linked article and do additional research to develop a full, informed opinion of this issue. I actually see both sides of the story - and cringe at responses to the issue from both sides.

I just have to get this out into the world.

My view of self is based on a holistic approach - mind, body and spirit are not independent entities. 

I was born with all three - I breathe with all three - I love with all three - I celebrate with all three - I worry with all three - I grieve with all three - I will die with all three.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Apparently my "innie" should have been and "outie"

I finally have a couple minutes to tell everyone what happened earlier this week.

So there I was working very hard (no, really, I was). I WAS! Gawd.

Anyway, the phone rang and the number came up on the caller ID, but I didn't recognize it. I answered.

After a short pause, a robot responded to my hello. "We are Credit Services, and have an important message for you.  This is not regarding a late or missed payment.  We would like to talk to you about reducing your credit card rate to 6%.  Please press 1 to continue."

Scam alarms are starting to sound, but my hard work involved a repetitive click-wait-click-wait and I needed to break the monotony.  I am also shopping for a better rate on my card - but just from the bank I have the card with...maybe it was them...

Cautiously press 1.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Intruder in our house

For those that follow me on Twitter, you may have seen my comments.

If you've seen me in person, you may have noticed that I'm a little bit more on edge.

Our house is no longer safe.  There is a breech in the force field around our home.

They've broken in...

They've stolen our serenity...

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Do what I want - not what I'm asking: Stream of consciousness Sunday

I've read weeks of Stay at Home Babe's and All Things Fadra's stream of consciousness Sunday entries. This week's SAHB post pushed me to another post...and both inspired me to sit for 5 min while Babygirl played to write this. It is harder than one would think to NOT hit the backspace and correct your mistakes when the little red squiggle pops up. Next time, I'll write in "Notebook" so you can all see how HORRIBLE my typing/spelling/grammar really is!

I'm a difficult person to get along with. (ending first sentence with preposition...way to go)

The closer I let a person get to me -- the more they become familiar with thtat fact.

The three people that are most familiar with my difficult-to-handle status are my husband, daughter, and stepson.

Friday, January 7, 2011

6 week weigh-in

So this is my 6 week check in during my 8 week fitness overhaul lead by How Does She Do It Mom's lovely Carrie.

Since the last weigh-in on December 23 - Christmas Day and New Years have both come and gone.

My family did things a little differently this year when it came to the holidays, and my Dad's family offered brunch and my Mom's family only had a plate of cookies served. No meal. Boy does that help! No plates and plates of dinner followed by desserts and then leftovers.  I had to refuse the homemade cookie box from my aunt and grandma this year. It was hare to say "no" on a sentimental level, but I know if I have sweets in the house...I eat them. They just split the goods across everyone else, so no waste.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Murphy's Law of Co-sleeping

Since Babygirl has been sick this past week, I have been a living contradiction of having said I'd "never have my child sleep in bed with me."

Four of the last five nights.

I've come to the following conclusions about sharing my bed with a 15 month old:

  • Under no circumstance is it possible to be far enough away to avoid getting kicked.
  • Those kicks will either land on the head or squarely in the boob regardless of baby/parent orientation in the bed.
  • The closer to dozing off you become, the farther from sleep she will be.
  • She will fall asleep the moment just before you were going to shift that one last time.
  • You will have a random itch, limb fall asleep, or toe cramp that results in waking her at least once before you both achieve a REM pattern.
  • She has no "roll over and fall back to sleep" option, if she sees your eyes open all bets are off.
  • Waking up to her gently playing with your eyelashes is much more terrifying and much less cute than it sounds.
Thank goodness she's asleep in her crib. Hopefully those glacially moving molars (three breaking through at the moment) give her (and me) a solid night's rest.

Monday, January 3, 2011

One O Five

I'm cold-blooded.

Not in the reptile sense, but in the sense that my body temperature is usually one degree cooler than the average human.  On a normal, healthy day, my temperature will read anywhere between 97° and 98°F.

To my touch, Babygirl's forehead ALWAYS seems warm to me.  I often have my husband feel her head before I go lubing up the thermometer.

There are times when I wonder if she's too warm and other times when I know she's hot.

She had been dancing on that line a lot last week.