Thursday, February 28, 2008

Please Pay Attention

Jonny's mommy, left a comment on my last post, informing me that she tagged me for one of those blasted memes. So, I went to see which one I would have the pleasure of doing this time. She tagged me for the "List 6 Quirky Things About Yourself" Meme! Hey, Jonny's mommy, I JUST did it! I figured maybe she just didn't read that post, but then I went back, and saw that she had indeed COMMENTED on the post. Gee, Jonny's mommy, glad my writing is so memorable for you. (whimper, whimper, sniff, sniff) Apparently, you all think I'm quirky, but now you are giving me a complex.

But, since you are just dying to know more random facts about me, FINE, here you go... (Oh, and since I am quite certain I have absolutely no more quirks to share (Shoosh, Jim), these really are just random facts. Sorry.

1. I took piano lessons for 12 years. My parents had me start the lessons when I was 6, and I HATED it. I didn't do the exercises I was supposed to do in the book, so when my dad would take me, the teacher would yell at me. At first, my dad would stay during the lesson, but after a while, he would just drop me off, and go "run errands". Truth is, he just couldn't take the yelling, and the bad playing. I complained and complained, until he finally said if I kept at it until a certain point, then I could quit. Of course, by that point, I was enjoying it, and decided to keep playing. Although I play pretty well, I will not play in front of anyone, except Jim and Dylan. I blame this on all those D@!* piano recitals I was forced to participate in. I used to make myself physically ill, I was so nervous.

2. At this moment in time, I have never had a cavity, (knocking on wood, throwing salt over my shoulder, rubbing my rabbit's foot, crossing my fingers, and holding my breath). The dentist I went to as a child was so impressed with me, he told me if I could make it until I was 16 without a cavity, he would take me across the road and buy me a banana split. That jerk never did buy me my banana split, not that I need one these days.

3. Since turning 18, I have moved a total of 18 times! I just can't wait to box up all my crap once again. (Sigh).

4. I have the ability to make people (even random strangers) open up and tell me their life story. Sometimes, they tell me things they have "never told anyone". Sometimes it is cool - I get a lot of really interesting information(gossip). Sometimes it is a royal pain in the butt, like when I am just trying to enjoy a meal in a restaurant, or get my grocery shopping done. Also, some of the stuff I am told, I really, really didn't need to know. I probably should have been a reporter, and investigator, or a psychologist. I did think about being a psychologist, but when I realized I would have to go to college for 6 years, I changed my mind. I was only going for 4. Do you want to guess how many years I ended up going to college for my art/elementary education degrees that I am basically not using? Do you want to know how much money I could be making right now if I had gone for psychology? Let's talk about something else.

5. I like to try new things, and go new places. I have been jet skiing, parasailing, white water rafting, downhill skiing, cross country skiing, tubing, and spelunking(did not enjoy that one). I rode the thing at Kennywood that is like a bungee jump, but you don't go straight down. I have been to an indoor and outdoors shooting range. I have done improv in front of an audience (once), and people actually laughed, which was awesome! I learned to juggle at a camp, (I'm not as good as Jim). I've been to Paris, Milan, Florence, Rome, Venice, Cancun, Jamaica, Punta Cana, and various places in the U.S. If I had the money, I would travel all the time!

6. I hope you can handle this one. It's big. Really big...
My favorite color is blue. You okay? Do you need to sit down?

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

My Social Butterfly

Yesterday I was assaulted by so much rudeness, that this morning I was still reeling from it, so I started a blog ranting like a maniacal lunatic. The post started... "This is a test. This is just a test. Had this been an actual smackdown you would have received instructions of where to go run and hide, and a five second headstart....Maybe". But, you know what, I didn't have time to finish the post, because our friend Rachel came over for a few hours, and by the time she left, I was mostly over it. Too bad, it would have been a doosey(is that a word, and how do you spell it?). Anyway, since I am no longer emiting smoke out of the top of my head, I better just let it go. Don't worry, I'm sure someone will irritate me sometime again in the near future. Rachel cured me of my bad mood and put herself on the top of my "People I Love" list, by simply uttering one wonderful question..."Would you and Jim like to go on a date, while I babysit next Friday?" "Uh, is this a rhetorical question?"

One good thing did happen yesterday. Dylan had a playdate! One of the mom's from the Mom's Club I belong to came over with her daughter who is 3 months older than Dylan, and her son, who is 3, I believe. It was amazing! Dylan has been around this little girl a few other times, but always in groups, and he never paid any attention to her at all. Yesterday, he decided he LOVES her. The looks my little flirt was giving her! Then he walked over and hugged her! This, from a kid who, at least up to this point, was never affectionate. He hugged her again, and again, and then with such force he knocked the poor kid over. "Okay, Whoa, Mister Love, calm yourself down a bit. I know she's pretty and hip with that princess backpack, but chill". At one point, the other mom and I were talking and realized the kids were no longer in the room. Yikes! We found the 3 of them in the kitchen, sitting spread out on the floor, rolling a ball to each other. They had initiated and were playing a game together - amazing! It was then that I realized I have got to get this kid around some other children more often. He is social, and I definately want to encourage that quality.

So, we have another playdate planned with his 2nd cousins tomorrow. Another older woman - I hope he can control himself. She is related, after all.

Sunday, February 24, 2008


I every so bravely made the trip today to that place I hate, but somehow keep ending up at, Giant Eagle, to do some desperately needed grocery shopping. I have been known to say that I will NOT shop at Walmart, because the people there scare me. I might have to add Giant Eagle to that list. Did you ever have a day that you are convinced that alien life form does exist and is alive and living smack dab in your neighborhood? Then again, if the aliens were in Giant Eagle today, they would all be like, "Meep, Beepity, Beep. Humans are freakin' wierd! I'm outta here!"

First I came around an aisle and almost ran smack dab into an extremely well endowed woman, whose boobs were hanging almost completely out of her skin tight t-shirt (Uh, it's winter, lady). As I stared (it was impossible not to), I read her shirt. It said, "Yes, they're real, and they're fabulous". Seriously?! That amazed me on so many levels. First, that she thinks they are fabulous - trust me, in a few years she's going to need a crane to hoist those babies up to an acceptable level. Secondly, I would think she would be so sick of people looking there, that she would want to avoid attention to that area. Thirdly, she was shopping somewhere, saw that shirt, and said to herself, "I have to have that!" Amazing.

If that wasn't enough to scar me for life, what I saw on the way out, definately was. As I was walking towards a guy, he sneezed. He didn't put his hand up to cover the sneeze. He just let it rip. A huge gob of snot shot out of his nose, towards me! I am not kidding! He still had a huge snot trail hanging off his nose, and he put a finger to the other side of his nose, and BLEW it onto the sidewalk! I couldn't help myself...I went "OhmyGod! Are you kidding me?" What do you think he did? Did he stop? Apologize profusely? Turn red and rush into the store in total embarassment? Nope. He grinned at me!
Some days I wonder why I leave the house.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

It's Not Easy Being Cheesy

Yesterday, I took Dylan to a party for a friend of mine. We had a good time, and Jim got some time alone to work on fixing the drawers in our bathroom. He is completely rebuilding the drawers from scratch, and it is involved, so when we got home he wanted to show me the progress he made. We were standing in the bathroom with Dylan, who was drinking from his sippy cup, while listening to our conversation.

After discussing the drawer progress, I mentioned that I would like to replace the faucet. Jim said, "You don't like it?", and I replied, "No, I think it is cheesy". The minute I said the word CHEESY, my crazy cheese loving kid released the sippy cup, dropping it on the floor, to frantically and excitedly make the sign for "Cheese". "Did someone say something about cheese?! I'm in! Let's go get some!" He kills me!

House Hunting 101

Yes, we are hoping to move soon. For anyone else who plans to move in the future, here are a few tips...

1. Start looking at houses, when your own house is not even close to the vicinity of being ready to be put on the market. Make sure walls are falling down, there are leak marks on the walls of the basement, the dust in your husband's workshop has dust on it, the studio has become a junk room/toy factory/exercise equipment mockery, the garage is a tool shed, and each and every available nook and cranny is stuffed as full as humanly possible.

2. Fall madly in love with perusing house sites, such as, that not only give you all the details of the house, but pretty pictures to look at of the houses.

3. Constantly add more houses to your saved list, so that by the time you get around to seeing them all, they will most definately all be sold.

4. Actually believe that the pictures on those sites truly show you the house as it appears in real life. (At one house we looked at they had conveniently cropped out the huge electrical tower in the side yard! Can you say "kid-friendly"?)

5. Keep thinking about a house after seeing it, and deciding it is not right for you. Get sad when you see that it has been sold. (We saw a house with an amazing studio/office with huge windows looking out into the yard with a pond, and a kitchen that almost brought me to tears and I don't even cook. I am still dreaming about those 2 rooms. I should mention the one car garage was detached, and after spending months at my own home, standing in the cold/snow/rain trying to buckle Dylan in his carseat as the cold air/snow/rain goes down the gap at the back of my pants, I WANT a 2 car integral garage. Oh, and also, that pond came with 3 ducks that had lived in that back yard all their lives. The owner said if we didn't want the ducks she could give them to a farm but they would most likely die. Yea, I already have a cat I don't want, let's add 3 ducks to the mix).

6. When you go to look at houses, be sure to take along a very active toddler who loves to climb up and down stairs, over and over, and over. Your realtor will love toddler wrangling while you stroll through the homes.

Seriously, it might be a while before we move! I honestly believe in the power of writing things down that you want and putting your wishes out there for the universe to sort out, so I'm going to do that here.

-3 or more bedrooms
-at least 2 bathrooms (we only have one now, which creates some "situations" quite often)
-2 car integral garage
-a room for Jim's workshop & tools, that I never have to step foot in
-a room to use as a studio/office where we can house the ridiculous amount of artistic supplies we both have, I can have a desk to write at, pay bills, etc., and there is no other junk in it
-a decent flat yard (fenced in would be awesome) for Dylan to play
-a deck would also be awesome (since we have a front and back deck now, we are spoiled in that area)
- a kitchen that we don't need to remodel (you have no idea how hard that actually is to come by!)
-a neighborhood with nice people, who actually wave hello, know our names, and maybe even become some of our closest friends!
- a good school system (one of the main reasons we are moving)
-a view of the beach (Oh, sorry, that will be the next house)

Wish us luck!

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Just Another Bragging Mommy

It has been a while since I wrote about all of Dylan's adventures. I have to say, he has been amazing me daily, and some of this stuff simply has to be documented! This past month, from age 14-15 months, he has done the following...

When I go in to get him out of the crib EVERY morning, he immediately points to the flash cards. Yes, my one year old son wants to look at flash cards! Right now, you are thinking that I am one of THOSE mommies - the psychotic, overzealous, push their kids too hard kind of mommy. Let me explain. When he first discovered his love of books, the only kind of book he would show interest in was one with photographs. I had these animal flash cards that were beautiful photos, from when I taught preschool, so I figured maybe he would like looking at them. He loved those so much, that when I saw a package with 4 different flash card boxes, (Colors & Shapes, First Words, Numbers, & The Alphabet), that also had photographs along with the words, I bought those. Now, he is obsessed. If that wasn't shocking enough, when I do the First Words flash cards, he does a lot of the signs as I show him the cards! Something else I found amazing was a couple days ago, when I was preoccupied and didn't get to those darn flash cards quick enough, he opened two of the boxes himself! Later that same day, at work, the four year old girl I work with, was trying to open a box of cards and ripped it in half, and I just had to laugh.

I am so glad that I have decided to teach Dylan signs, and I have to pause to thank Burgh Baby's Mom, and especially Alexis, for inspiring me to do so. At this point, he does the sign for eat, more, please (EAT MORE PLEASE!!), milk, dog, hat, car, banana, cheese, apple, book, shoes, socks, fish, baby, plane, ball, all done, and occasionally, thank you.
When we were all sick, as Jim was leaving for work one morning, we looked at Dylan and he was signing "hat" and pointing at Jim, to tell him to wear his hat. Too cute! If I told him to wear his hat, no way, but when Dylan does, on goes the hat. If I hadn't taught him signs, I wouldn't realize just how much he understands at this point. He is often signing words we are using in our conversations, when we didn't even realize he was listening!

He still isn't saying much, though. He finally started saying mama! Before, I really think he was just messing with me. I would say, "Say Ma-Ma!", and he would grin and shout "DA-DA!" every time. So, he says dada, mama, buh(for ball), daah(for down), yes, and un (for cars or trucks). One day we were sitting on the couch, and he kept pointing, saying "Unnn!" I said "Onion?" I was going batty trying to figure out what he wanted, until I finally said "Dylan, go get the Unnnn!" He brought his blue truck over to the couch, and then I got it. Whenever we play with a car or truck, I would go "Ruunnnn"(like the cars motor revving). He can't make the "r" sound, so he says "Unnn". He went and got his dump truck, and bulldozer, and lined those up next to the blue truck, all the while saying "Unnn". I said, "Yes, those are all the Unnn's you have". Then he got up, went over to his bin of books, and took out two books that have wheels attached to them, and lined those up as well. Corrected by a one year old. Wow, it is starting early.

His newest love is playing the piano. He doesn't just sit on our lap and plunk around in one area. NO! He half stands, to get the optimum amount of oommpph when striking each and every key all the way up and down the piano! He lives for praise, so as he is playing, he is often looking at the spectators, waiting for applause.

Another thing he loves to do now is to walk in circles until he gets dizzy. I'll try to post a video of that soon. He also loves his hat. He sometimes wants to wear it in the house!

We are still working on leaving the bottle behind. He really loves his bottle, so it has been a struggle. At this point, I am only giving him one when he first wakes up, and then he gets the sippy cup the rest of the day. He is still throwing tantrums when I give it to him, but if I walk away, he usually gives in, and starts drinking. I try really hard not to laugh while he is throwing the tantrum, but it is pretty funny, so walking away is really serving two purposes!

I also have to thank Nicole, because looking at her photographs (which are awesome!), made me realize I hadn't done a photo shoot in a long time. Wow, it was tough! But, here are a couple of those, and also some snapshots I've taken recently I like..

(This last one is of my men watching the Super Bowl. Notice Dylan has his feet up, and a beverage in hand? Boys will be boys.)

Monday, February 18, 2008

Quirky But Excellent

Well, a while ago Marie tagged me to do the "Quirky Meme". When I read that I was supposed to come up with 6 quirky things about myself, I thought, "I'm not going to be able to do that. I'm totally normal. I don't have any weird quirks". But, just in case, I figured I would ask Jim. Unfortunately, I asked him during dinner, and as usual, our conversation was steered off course by a certain 15 month old. Two or three days later, I brought it up again, when Dylan was asleep in the car, and we were on our way to look at houses. Strangest thing happened... Jim started spouting off quirks like a fountain! So, whatever, apparently I'm a little quirky. Here are just the first 6 he thought of...

1. I don't untie my shoes to take them off. I always just step on the back with the toe of the other foot, and slip them off. That usually results in the heels of my shoes being pressed down. Maybe it is sheer laziness. Maybe it is hereditary - my dad does the same thing. All I know is, it drives Jim CRAZY. As unluck would have it, I can wear the same shoes as my husband, and if I do, he finds them with the backs pressed down. I bought a pair of men's slippers for myself, since I rarely find my stupid size, but Jim thinks they are his, so when he finds them with the back pressed down he gives me "the look".

2. When I watch tv, and get really into a show, I go into some sort of trance, and my mouth hangs open. When someone tries to talk to me, I often take a while to answer, because I am so In The Zone. It is a right brain thing. When I am totally using the right side of my brain, I go into The Zone, and lose track of time and place. It used to happen all the time in my art classes. I had a class right before dinner one day of the week, and my roommate used to tell people, "Don't even bother trying to talk to Jen for at least 10 minutes. She is still In The Zone." If you don't know what I'm talking about, really that sucks for you.

3. I sometimes twirl my hair around my finger. That little quirk used to drive my dad insane! I did it a lot more often then. I think I mostly just do it when I'm bored. Luckily now, I have a hand to hold, (right Jim?), so that occupies my crazy, fidgety hand with a mind of its own.

4. This one, Jim didn't even know about - wow, did that intrigue him! I had to tell him to get his mind out of the gutter, of course. When I go to a movie, I sometimes act out the parts later, when I'm alone in my car. I really don't think I have a secret desire to be an actress, so why do I do it? Who the heck knows? Cuz, I'm quirky, I guess.

5. Along that same vein, I talk to myself all the time. (They're coming to take me away, Hee, Hee, Haw, Haw.) I find that it helps me think things through. Like if I lose something, I'll say, "Okay, I remember having it when I was eating breakfast. After breakfast I..." Or, "Now, why did I walk in this room again? I came in here to get something. I was looking through my mail, and that made me think of X, which made me realize I need to X..." I often grumble aloud about stupid people, also. This one could really get me in trouble if I grumbled just a bit louder. Luckily, now that I have Dylan with me most of the time, I can pretend like I am talking to him, instead of my loony self.

6. This is another one that drives Jim nuts. I really don't know why. Doesn't everybody put their silverware they are using to eat with, back on their napkin, instead of on the table, and then steal their spouses clean napkin?

So, that's me. I'm a freak with a bunch of quirks. But, much more importantly, I am also Excellent. Sparx, Jonny's Mommy, and Pam all say so. Thanks, you guys! I live for compliments, but I'm just quirky that way.

(I'm not going to tag anyone, because everytime I do, it stresses people out, and everyone has enough stress right now!) I'm also not passing the bloggy bling along, because I think everyone I would give it to, already has it. But, hey, if you don't, feel free to grab it.)

Friday, February 15, 2008

That Holiday I Hate

I hate Valentines Day. On Valentines Day in first grade, I eagerly searched through the box I had decorated with my Valentines in them. I wanted to find the one Brian had given me. He was soooo cute. All the girls in my class thought so. I couldn't wait to see which one he had chosen for me, or how he wrote his name. Imagine my suprise when I saw that my valentine read "To Jenny B. I Love You". I LOVE YOU!!! My little six year old heart almost exploded with joy! I looked over at my best friend, Michele, and mouthed "I have to tell you something!" When the girls and boys got in our separate lines to go to the bathroom before recess, I was finally able to show her my valentine. "Can you believe it?!", I gushed, still on cloud nine. She got an angry look on her face, blurted "NO!", and showed me her valentine from Brian - "To Michele. I Love You". She started talking about how Brian was a turd, and the girl behind us overheard. "Hey! That's what he wrote on MY valentine!" Pretty soon all the first grade girls were in a tizzy. The toughest of them said we had to do something about this, and that is how it came to be that all the first grade girls cornered poor little Brian on the playground, yelling and waving valentines in his face. He was practically in tears as he yelled, "That's what my mom told me to write on all of them!"

In third grade, our idiot teacher thought she had a great idea on Valentines Day. She had the girls draw a boy's name out of a hat, and then that lucky boy was forced by idiot teacher to pull his desk along side ours, where we were to share each other's lunches. I'm not sure how she saw this going in her head, but this is how it went (at least in my corner of the classroom). I drew Jason's name, and I'm pretty sure I heard him groan and mumble something about girls having cooties, as he was moving his desk over. He then proceeded to eat my entire lunch, and his, without so much as a word to me. Happy Valentines Day!

In junior high (seventh grade) another wonderful tradition began. Each year on Valentines Day, there were people selling carnations. You could buy red carnations, which stood for love, or yellow carnations, which stood for friendship, and have them delivered to people at the start of the day (in homeroom). Since I didn't even have a boyfriend until I was 18, I'm sure you can guess how many red carnations were delivered my way. I would look around at the lucky girls who had red carnations, and cringe when my yellow one was delivered from my best friend at that time, Karen, with some remark like, "Who needs men? We've got each other".

In high school, when it seemed like everyone was pairing up, I would try not to puke as I looked around at the sea of girls dressed in reds and pinks, clutching their cards, roses, and chocolates, as I tried to imagine what would happen if I went around popping all those damn heart balloons!

I decided to go to a "christian" college, where we were forced, yes forced, as a whole campus, to attend chapel twice a week. (Don't even get me started on that ridiculousness). Freshmen year, Valentine's day happened to fall on "chapel day". It just so happened that out of me and the 9 girls I most often hung out with, only one had a boyfriend at the time. The day before V-Day we were all complaining about the dreaded holiday, and I formulated a plan. That is how on Valentine's Day 1991, in a huge auditorium of reds and pinks, all eyes were drawn to a row of 20 girls(my army grew), grinning and laughing and wearing nothing but black. It is a tradition I've carried on to this day. This year was the 18th year! The years that I did have someone special, I felt sorry for those that didn't.

Don't get me wrong. I definately believe that love is worth celebrating. I just don't think we need a trumped up, Hallmark driven, "Every kiss begins with Kay", "He went to Jared", pay $60 for a bouquet of flowers that would normally cost $20, call weeks in advance to make a reservation or don't eat, holiday to celebrate it. When I buy Jim something at the grocery store that he loves but hasn't had in a while I celebrate it, when I kiss Dylan's soft cheek I celebrate it, when I watch Jim rough housing with Dylan I celebrate it, when I listen to my parents making Dylan laugh I celebrate it.. I celebrate love EVERY DAY.

I told Jim, as I usually do, not to buy me anything for Valentines Day this year. He listened, but he made me a card anyway.

With a guy as thoughtful as that, and a son as cute as that, who needs a holiday? Trust me, I'm celebrating.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Don't Judge Me

Bugger it! (Don't mind me, I'm just trying out a few of my English blogger buddy expressions. Thanks, Sparx.) Yep, that is a picture of my LEFT hand, as opposed to my right, where the bracelet started. Until you have successfully completed this crazy little experiment of mine - Kindly keep your mouth shut. Thank you.

Oh, and also I wanted to thank Jck. Hand model, huh? Well, if I ever decide to quit my day job, it's always good to have a back up plan.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

A Phone Call With Spring

Brrriing, brrriiing...

Spring: Hello?
Me: Spring! Oh, good, I got you at home. How are you?
Spring: Who is this?
Me: It's Jen. Don't tell me you forgot me?
Spring: Oh, you. How could I forget you? You call me every year around this time, begging me to come early.
Me: Well, uh, actually, I just called to see how you were doing? What's wrong? You usually have such a sunny disposition.
Spring: I don't know. I think I have that virus that is going around. I feel like I was hit by a Mack truck or something.
Me: Oh, Spring! Not you too!
Spring: Yea, I took little Springer to Chuck E Cheese, and I swear I picked it up there.
Me: No kidding. That place is evil. Maybe you need some drugs?
Spring: Maybe.
Me: Well, listen, when you feel better, maybe you'd like to...
Spring: I knew it! I knew you didn't just call to see how I was!
Me: But, you don't understand! Everyone is sick, and it's cold, and there's snow everywhere, and we can't leave our houses, and our kids are bored, and they're driving us crazy!
Spring: Yea, so? It's called Winter. Deal with it.
Me: Well, Winter is kicking the Burgh's ass, okay? I'm so sick of it. I'm going to be able to do so many fun things with Dylan when you come this year. Can't you come early? Pllleeeaassee?
Spring: Stop whining. You know the rules. I can't come until March, and even then I'm not sure when I'll make it. With this virus, I haven't had time to even think about packing.
Me: Great. That's it. I'm hibernating until you get here.
Spring: You do that.
Me: I'm sorry, Spring. It's really not your fault. I'm just frustrated. I don't mean to put all the blame on you. I'll let you go. I really do hope you feel better, and give Springer a kiss from me, okay? I'll just see you when you get here. Oh, and Spring?
Spring: I know. I love you, too.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

The Blind Date Alphabet

In honor of that holiday I hate that is coming up, thought I would share this poem I wrote way back when, after I had an...interesting blind date.

The Blind Date

A is for Anticipation. I just knew that he’d be great!
B is for Brent – the name of my mystery date.
C is for Call. We set up a place to meet.
D is for Dinner. He said he’d take me out to eat.
E is for Evening. This is how it all began.
F is for Frightening. He was a scary looking man.
G is for “Grim”. He said his friends called him that.
H is for Hair. It went halfway down his back.
I is for Ill. I should have faked being sick.
J is for Joke. I mean this had to be a trick.
K is for Kid. Out of wedlock, he had three.
L is for Lame – how our conversation seemed to me.
M is for McDonald’s. Did I mention that’s where we ate?
N is for Natural Selection. Let’s just say this wasn’t fate.
O is for Outerwear. He was wearing all black that day.
P is for Price. The fixer-upper was going to pay!
Q is for Quick. I ate as fast as I could.
R is for Remember. This was one date I knew I would.
S is for Scared. I feared I’d see someone, and I did.
T is for Table. Under ours is where I hid.
U is for Unemployed. Surprise, surprise, he had no job.
V is for Vague. What was that about the mob?
W is for “Why Me?”, which is what I wanted to scream.
X is for X-rated. His language was obscene.
Y is for “You’re crazy!” He thought he’d kiss me at the end.
Z is for Zero. The number of dates we’d have again.

Monday, February 11, 2008

The Noise

Just a few quick updates tonight... Day one with the bracelet was successful, folks! Don't be too impressed, though, because I didn't leave my house the whole dang day! It was four degrees today. FOUR. That is not fit for man or beast, so in spite of the fact that Dylan and I have had way more quality "home" time lately than we could ever want, I just couldn't drag my toasty butt out into the ridiculousness. Besides, even though I am almost finished with the antibiotic I was so thrilled to get, I am still blowing my nose, and icicles attached to my nostrils just did not interest me.

Dylan is either completely wacked out loopy on his antibiotics or he has taken complete boredom to new levels. If he wasn't pressing the locator button on the cordless phone (BEEP! BEEP! BEEP!), he was seeing how many things he could pull off every surface of our home onto his head. He created a new noise that I think only dogs can hear, oh and ME! It is a high pitched whine that makes me feel like someone is running their nails down a chalkboard. As soon as Jim came in the door, he asked, "How was your day? You seem stressed." Geez, did the hair pulling, and eyes darting wildly give it away?

Here is my crazy kid standing on the couch. Be glad I didn't make you watch video of "the noise"!

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Did You Hear About...?

I don't always read Pam's blog, but one day I felt compelled to read it. That day, she happened to post the results from a quiz that she had taken, about whether or not people like her, and why they do, and why they don't. She said her results were pretty accurate. So, I went to the site, and took the quiz. I was a bit confused, because it said that people definately like me, but then under why people don't like me, it said that I often bore others and myself. Wha..HEY! I strongly disagree with that, you stupid quiz! But, I have to admit, the next one - that I am too judgemental and overly opinionated - well, yea, that is right on. But, the next one really made me think - that I gossip too much and people wonder if I am gossiping about them. Um, ouch. As much as I hate to admit it, I do gossip. When I'm with X, I talk negatively about our mutual friend Y. I will say that I don't always start the gossiping, but if someone else starts it, I seem to jump right in.

I'm not the biggest gossip, and I'm not even sure that people would say that about me, but I do it, and it bothers me that I do it. I know that people are also gossiping about me. I could probably even tell you what they are saying. Most women are gossips. Have you ever been to a party with all women? Do you want to know why women always go to the bathroom in groups? It is because we KNOW that when someone leaves the room, that the other women WILL be talking about us. If we take others, hopefully they will be even more annoying than we are, and everyone will discuss them.

Jim and I had a date today. When we were able to actually sit down and have an uninterrupted conversation, I brought up the gossip thing. I asked Jim, "Is there anyone that I haven't said something negative about at some point?" After thinking about it, (a loooong time), he thought of one person. I thought of another one. "Wow, so there are only 2 people that are safe from my negative gossip?!" (All my friends and family are now saying "Geez, I hope I'm one of the 2! - By the way, I will never tell who those 2 are, so don't even ask. Just assume it is you. Okay?)

Somewhere, at some point in the past, I saw people conducting an experiment. They put these bracelets on their left wrist. The goal was to go 7 days without making a negative comment. If they did, they had to switch the bracelet to their right wrist, and start all over. They had to keep switching the bracelet, and couldn't take it off until they finally went 7 whole days without a negative comment. We all know people who would probably die with that dang bracelet still on their wrist, don't we? So, my idea is this... I'm going to wear a bracelet for 7 days, or 243 days, or however long it takes, (please, God, let it only be 7 days since I am actually telling everyone this idea, like an idiot), without gossiping about anyone. But first, did you hear about Burgh Baby's Mom, Sparx, Elsie, Jck, and Kellan?

They're AWESOME.

Friday, February 8, 2008

Bang, Bang

A while ago, I saw this headline in the newspaper...Boy, 7, suspended for drawing stick-figure shooter. My initial reaction was "Oh, give me a break!" But, I kept reading..."was suspended last week for violating X's zero-tolerance policy on guns...gave the picture to another child on the school bus, and that child's parents complained about it to school officials...the picture showed two stick figures with one pointing a crude-looking gun at the other...What appeared to be the word "me" was written above the shooter, with another name scribbled above the other figure." That painted a different picture to me than I originally had in my head, of overreacting, overzealous parents punishing a poor seven year old boy for doing something all seven year old boys do. If Dylan brought home a picture, no matter how "crude", of someone pointing a gun at him, I would probably react as strongly as those parents did. But that got me thinking.

Aren't boys by nature interested in guns, bombs, swords, ninjas, cowboys, jedis, and warriors? Aren't we being hypocritical if we say we won't buy our boys guns, but we will buy them video games and movies that depict violence in other ways? When I taught preschool we were told not to allow "gun play". I can't even tell you how many times I had to tell the boys "No guns!". One of my favorite little boys said to me, "Well then, how are the good guys supposed to win over the bad guys?" I said, "Use your brains, and outsmart them", to which he gave me a look like I had 3 heads, and asked "Huh?"

For Dylan's birthday he got a wagon filled with large leggos. The first thing I built with them was a house. When my mom came over, she made an airplane, and flew it around the room. What was the first thing Jim made for our one year old son? A machine gun, complete with spit flying through the air sound effects. Men. It's in their blood, I think. Oh yea, it's called testosterone.

I have to admit, though, as a kid, who spent a lot of time playing with my two male cousins, I coveted their machine guns. What this says about me, I don't know, but would I have turned out differently if my parents had given in? Boys have always played with play guns through the ages. Doesn't the increase in violence have to be due to something else? Perhaps the media's glorification of it? Perhaps the onslaught of violence in the movies and on television? Should we teach our children that "gun's are bad"?

I would love to know what all of you out there in cyberspace think, whether you have boys or not. Let's have a discussion.

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Happy Birthday, Dad

When I was a small child, maybe about 2 or 3 years old, my dad would lay down on the floor, and put me on his stomach. My little face would snuggle in close to his, and he would wrap his big arms around me, and he would start to roll from side to side. As he rolled, this is the song he would sing to me...
"Row, row, row, way up the river,
He would row, row, row,
A hug he'd give her, (he would squeeze me tightly)
Then he'd kiss her once or twice, (he would kiss my cheek)
And she would say..." He would pause, and I would say, giggling, "Some more!" And then, he'd start the song again, after planting many kisses on my little, giggling, cheek.

I don't know how young a person is when they actually retain memories, but I swear I remember doing that with my dad. I remember what he smelled like (Coast with a faint hint of aftershave), I remember how his face felt against mine, (sometimes smooth, sometimes a little scratchy), but most of all I remember how it made me feel to have his arms wrapped tightly around me. I felt safe. I felt loved.

Dad, now, as I row along on this journey of life, the water sometimes calm, sometimes treacherous, I take that feeling with me. I take the values you have instilled in me. I take the lessons you have taught. I take the advice you so often gave (whether I wanted it or not). I take the attributes that you helped shape in me. Mostly, though, I just take that feeling. Knowing, that you will always be there for me when I need you, to give me a hug, or just to listen when I need to talk, and that I can always say "Some more!"

I love you, Dad. Happy Birthday.

Monday, February 4, 2008

Drugs, Glorious Drugs!

First off, thanks to all of you who expressed your get well wishes. To those of you who are also suffering through the long days of sick households, my wishes for a speedy recovery, and Drugs! Last night, when Dylan coughed so hard that he made himself throw up again, (after being sick for 8 days), I was mad. When I am sick, I actually get to the point where I become irrationally angry - angry at the tissue box that just ran out of tissues, angry at the toaster that burned my freakin' toast, angry at the person who dared to call me on the phone when I just got comfortable on the couch, angry at the heater that isn't coming on when I want it to because I have the chills, angry at the wall that I bumped into taking my congested, hazy self into the kitchen, angry at the illness that is making my family miserable. Last night, as I lay in bed, listening to my husband coughing violently, downstairs on the couch, (where he has voluntarily been sleeping, so that at least I have some hope of getting rest), I got furious. Enough is enough.

This morning I announced, "We ARE getting drugs...TODAY!" I waited around impatiently until 9:00 on the dot, when my doctor and also Dylan's pediatrician's office opened. Then, the phone calls began, and the begging. "Pleeeeeaase, can you just call in an antibiotic?", (with a few coughs and gags for effect). Jim took 1/2 day off, and when he called his doctor, I believe the answer he immediately got was "No problem". My doctor took several back and forth phone calls, begging, pleading, and cajoling, but they finally gave in.

The pediatrician wouldn't budge - we had to take him in. "FINE!", my miserable self shouted. I had explained to Jim the night before that I could NOT take Dylan to the doctors myself. He seemed confused by that statement. However, after going along today, I am certain that he understands. Just for the doctor to look in Dylan's ears took me holding his legs, Jim holding his arms, and the doctor holding his head, and the 3 adults were still struggling. I'm telling you this kid has superhuman strength. When she said we could wait a few more days to see if this thing ran its course, or we could be more aggressive since he doesn't seem to be getting any better, I almost shrieked, "GIVE US DRUGS!", like a crazy person. Luckily, she did give us a prescription for an antibiotic, so you won't be seeing me on the nightly news this evening.

Since my dumb doctor took all day to finally call my drugs in, I called Jim at work and asked him to pick them up on his way home. Problem is, I called several hours before he left work, instead of five minutes before, and he has a short, short term memory, so he came in the door without it. "I NEED DRUGS!! YOU BETTER GO GET ME SOME DRUGS!!!", was my sweet, love infused greeting to my darling husband.

But, hey, we all have drugs now, so life is good. I'm gonna go take some, hug my tissue box, kick back on the couch, and watch Wentworth be his dreamy self.

Saturday, February 2, 2008

TV Amuses Me

We are a hurting family unit over here. Dylan has been sick since last Sunday. He is doing some better, but now it has hit Jim and I like a Mack truck to the head. Yesterday, I had the worst headache ever. I felt like someone was drilling a hole through my skull. Today, Jim informed me he feels like "death warmed over". The two of us can barely get up off the couch. Dylan, on the other hand, is ready to GO. Anywhere. He and I haven't left the house since last Saturday. That is 7 days in the house! For some, maybe not a big deal, but for me and Dylan, that spells Stir crazy, with a capital S. We like to get out and be around some other humans from time to time. This week's therapy sessions - cancelled. The doctor appointment Dylan had yesterday - cancelled. His haircut he so desperately needed to get this morning - cancelled. Plans to have friends over for dinner tonight - cancelled. Superbowl festivities at our house - cancelled. The plans now include ingesting lots of liquids, popping vitamin C tablets like candy, carrying Kleenex boxes around like a security blanket, and lots of moaning and groaning about how being sick SUCKS! Wah, Wah, Wah.

So, what do I look forward to, when each day blends in to the next, and I long for the days of leaving the house, and breathing out of my nose? My nightly TV fix, that's what. I like lots of shows, but the two that are greatly amusing me lately are American Idol and American Gladiators.

American Idol truly cracks me up. You have Simon, the delightfully grumpy and "I'm not trying to be rude, but..", bluntly honest British guy, who I would just love to be for a day. Oh, what fun, to be able to say whatever I want, to whomever I want, whenever I want for a day! "What the bloody hell was THAT?", is probably my favorite thing he says, so I would say that to anyone within earshot who annoyed me. I would wear my tshirts too tight, and roll my eyes a lot, also.

Then, there is Paula, who claps like a seal, has to be heavily medicated with all her wild mood swings, and seems physically pained when she has to say no to another delusional tone deaf contestant. She is in serious need of some love, and gets hot and bothered every time a good looking young thing walks through the doors.

Lets not forget Randy, the guy with too much bling, who shouts out "Dawg! You can blow! You my boy! YE-A!"
I almost forgot Ryan, the host who has the amazing ability to keep a straight face while listening to delusionals spout out whatever dribble goes on in their psychotic little brains.

They say lawyers are ambulance chasers. I say all you psychologists are missing the boat. If I were you, I would get my psychoanalyzing butt to those American Idol auditions. There are thousands of potential clients just waiting for guidance, there. Help these poor people, would you? Then again, don't, it's much funnier this way.

Then, you have the new and improved American Gladiators show. The hosts are Muhammed Ali's daughter, the queen of cliches, and Hulk Hogan, who is still wearing the same get up as always. He always looks like he has to pee in those too tight, the 80's are over, black pants.

I'm sorry, all you "old" Gladiators, but you really weren't that scary. These ones are F.R.I.G.H.T.E.N.I.N.G freaks of nature. This guy, Militia, could cut glass with his nipples, and bounce pennies off his rock hard buns. Wolf, the guy who actually howls before each match and salivates at the mouth, might have just escaped from the zoo. Helga could crush me with her thighs, alone, or maybe just her ankles. My favorite part of the show is probably the event where the Gladiator is up on a platform, shooting tennis balls at the contestants while they scurry around like mice, trying to avoid the balls of death, while also trying to hit a huge target above the Gladiator's head. If they are lucky enough to hit it, the Gladiator is yanked backwards, with enough force to give them a supercolossal wedgie, before plunging them into the cold pool of water. What fun! If only these existed wherever I went. Whenever the jerks at Giant Eagle rolled their eyes at me, and grunted, "Have a nice day", in a way that sounds remarkably like "I hope you die", Bam! Swoosh! Splash! If I went on the show, I would be the first contestant to have the honor of peeing on the mats, and crying, "Mommy". Of course, since I am sick, I'm crying "Mommy" these days, anyway.