Tuesday, April 28, 2009

I shouldn't be allowed in public

I am not sure when my hair got so long. I swear, it multiplied while I was sleeping. Or, someone is sneaking Miracle Grow into my shampoo. I am not sure which of those two it is, but it certainly has nothing to do with the fact that the only place my hair goes is up into a haphazard pony tail most days. Even more absurd is thinking it has anything do with fact that I haven’t really dried or straightened my hair in months. When I dried it and straightened it today, I was astounded to discover the extra foot of hair I acquired.

Today I was also wearing a shirt with a much deeper neckline than I traditionally sport. You know, one that could technically be classified as cleavage-revealing on someone else. However, on me, it’s just a shirt with an awkwardly low neckline and no cleavage to be found.

After work, I decided to stop and get something to eat prior to teaching (you know, work #2, what supports the shopping habit I have). I had some extra time and went into a little café to savor some quiet time and a good meal before class. Dining alone doesn’t bother me at all. Despite that, dining alone is disconcerting due to the occasional gauche reaction from a fellow diner, which makes me feel like I should be uncomfortable dining alone. Apparently my solo dining status is of greater concern to them than it is to me. Those people apparently don’t recognize the beauty of quiet time. So, dining alone does provide some level of awkwardness as a semi-questionable social activity in the public eye.

So, I am sitting in the café, inconspicuously eating my Cherry Chicken Salad, when I feel something crawl down the front of my shirt.

I might have yelped a little loudly.

I might have began wildly patting, brushing, and beating my chest.

I might have stood up, attempting to fling this predatory creature from my body utilizing effort that should be reserved for evicting a swine-flu carrying visitor.

Much too late, I might have realized that it was a perfectly lovely strand of hair that had rather unexpectedly migrated into the front of my shirt.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Disclaimer: Might make your brain hurt

I mean, the whole post might make your brain hurt. I couldn't be more discombobulated if I tried.

[After an inordinate amount of time had passed waiting for Craig to come out of the gas station.]

CRAIG: Ugh. That took forever.
ME: Uh huh.
CRAIG: There was this guy in line ahead of me and he was paying for his gas. He only got $8.75 in gas because that is all the money he had. I felt bad.
ME: Okay.
CRAIG: And then he paid for it all in change, counting out all $8.75 in change.
KATE: Wow, he has A LOT of change!

I love that kids look at things so literally, forcing us to see things from a different point of view. Still, I couldn’t help but bristle at the whole conversation and realize just ignorant we can be and how much we take what we have for granted. You think I am going all Lifetime movie on you, right? Next up, the self-help book of positive affirmations. Believe me, this isn’t my typical train of thought, so it bears discussing. Anyway, it caught Craig off guard that someone would only get $8.75 in gas because ALL THEY HAD was $8.75. When we need gas, we fill up the tank, right?

I’ve spent the past month volunteering on a few HR related projects in the community. A portion of that time has been spent preparing soon-to-be graduates from local alternative ed high schools for job search and interviewing skills. Another portion of that time has been spent giving interview coaching and guidance to a segment of the chronically unemployed utilizing the welfare system. It is hard not to feel defeated when you are trying to provide motivation and encouragement to people in these situations. Let’s face it, in Michigan there are plenty of unemployed people with graduate degrees. I’m trying to offer hope to people with sparse education, criminal records, and undesirable work histories.

I’m so sick of this economy. I want to punch it in the face.

It just makes me realize how damn lucky I am that I can put $40 of gas in my car when I need it.

In changing my mindset to mirror the optimistic approach of my three-year old, I leave you with this:

Man, I love this kid!

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Kate: Month Thirty-Nine


We made it through month thirty-nine. I don’t think I’ve ever been so happy to be a month older. I have had a difficult time starting this monthly letter because I can’t reflect on this past month without wanting to sob uncontrollably and blurt out more obscenities than appropriate. A solid quarter of the month consisted of THE SICKNESS that wreaked havoc on our household. An additional quarter of the month included negligible sickness, developments leading up to the sickness, and recovering from the sickness. On top of dealing with all of that, unrelated obligations kept eating away at the only free time I had to spend with you. As if all of that weren’t enough, it was also the month that you decide to declare THE MONTH OF THE FREAKING-NEVERENDING-IRRATIONAL-TANTRUM.

One morning last week, I was trying to get ready for work. It was an important day at work and I was making every attempt to have it together, or at least appear to have it together, which is often as close as I can get. Of course, it was the morning my hair looked like crap. I was functioning on five-hours of sporadic sleep. I had forgotten to make my lunch the night before and I had no time to throw something together. I managed to get my suit on and get you out the door, but not without playing I AM DYING OF STARVATION AND YOU MUST FEED ME, BUT I WANT ANYTHING BUT THAT AND THAT AND THAT AND THAT, which is your new favorite game in the morning. About half way into the drive, I looked down and realized that I had a stain on my suit jacket, which appeared to have declared residency as the hasty attempts to clean it off were failing miserably. You were usually quiet in the backseat, so I inquired about the status of the Apple Cinnamon Clif Bar that you might have died without bringing for the seven-mile drive. Apparently the mere question brought out the devil in you, as you decided to bellow at me in return. I tuned out part of the rebuke, but I think it contained something like, “STOP TALKING TO ME.” It was at that moment, the culmination of not only that particular morning, but the entire month … I didn’t know what to do. The only feasible options seemed to include breaking down in tears, or dropping you off at daycare and going home and climbing back into bed. That pretty much sums up life in our house lately.

I’ve realized that dealing with tantrums really is not my strong suit. I wonder if Super Nanny offers phone consultations on this particular topic. Your fits are so illogical, so absurd, and so outrageously maddening that I just don’t know how to handle them. Of course, I KNOW the reasons behind this developmental stage and your quest for control and power in your own little world. I keep trying to remind myself of those things when we are in the throes of chaos. However, I must say that knowing why they are happening and dealing with them require two entirely different skill sets. Your new tantrum is an interesting combination of an idle threat and totally irrational logic, which I find fascinating. Take, for instance, me telling you not to touch something in the store. Your new response is to look at me and scream, “Fine, then I won’t touch ANYTHING!” Um, okay, that would be lovely. The other day it was, “I am not going to KICK anything then.” Alrighty then. Another day, on our way home, “Fine, I am not going home then!” I had to resist the urge to try to make you good on your word there. It’s ridiculous, it’s absolutely irritating, but it is where we are right now. This shit is only supposed to happen to other people’s kids.

The other night, you were convinced that you were going to have a frozen yogurt pop before dinner. You were relentless, despite knowing it wasn’t something you were going to get. If I didn’t know better, I would think you were looking for a battle. Upon realizing that I wasn’t going to cave, you decided to up the ante. I watched incredulously as you threw yourself down on the floor, shrieking, screaming, with all appendages flailing. Upon making impact with the ceramic tile the first time, you changed your approach and kept wildly flapping your arms in legs cautiously in the air. I continued watching you, resisting the urge to laugh … which was the only reaction that seemed appropriate.

I swear this monthly letter will leave people questioning my parental credentials. Despite that, I have committed to make every attempt to be as honest as possible in these letters to you. I think it is important to be realistic about life and to know that there are going to be days, weeks, and months that really just suck. However, in the end, a new day, week, or month is just around the corner. It is also a true testament to parenthood that even in times like this, I love you even more today than I did yesterday … and yesterday I would have claimed that not possible.

So Miss Kate, here is to a better month. Life is slowing down, the weather is warming up, and I am focusing on the positives.

With all the love in the world,


P.S. We also celebrated Easter, you met your cousin Ethan, and got a mortgage-payment sized playset this month ... fan-freaking-tastic that the fits took up more of my memories of this month, huh?

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Did you know that it is March 30th today?

My attempt to master time management consists of an awkward mixture of Microsoft Outlook and a Franklin Covey planner. The computer keeps track of my meetings and the planner gives me a place to put all my notes, reminders, messages, to-do’s, and basically anything that cannot be classified as a meeting. It isn’t pretty and I know all those time management professionals would shake their finger at me because the rule is to only use one system. I can’t stay organized with two, how on earth would I manage by only using one? Stupid people.

So, what does one do when they finally have time to open their planner on April 23rd and finds that it is still on March 30th?

a) Alternate between fits of hysterics, giggles, and maniacal snorts.

b) Simply turn the planner from March 30th to April 23rd and hope that everything contained in-between those pages were insignificant, redundant items.

c) Take a Xanax and ponder the absurdity of time management.

d) Quickly exclude mention of this item from the time management curriculum that you are about to teach.

e) Other

You know, I am just wondering. It happened to a friend of a friend and I am wondering what to tell her to do.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Self esteem boost of the day

One day last week when Mother Nature decided to tease us with a nice day (and then immediately rescinded it, that bitch), Kate and I biked into town to get ice cream. I know those two activities are incongruent, but that is exactly why I do it. I figure that the biking cancels the ice cream consumption out, so I end up basically even. If you can convince yourself, that is all that matters, right? I hope so, because that is how I rationalize almost everything.

Since I don’t possess skill or the patience for assembling things, I decided to forgo hooking up the bike trailer for Kate. Instead, I buckled her into the seat that I had mounted on the back of my bike from last year. She wasn’t really thrilled with that plan, but I kept convincing her that those seats were for big kids and I needed her to ride in it so we could bike really fast. Who am I kidding? Fast? Whatever, she’s gullible and I was convincing enough that she bought it. Plus, her mind was on the ice cream so the seat didn’t seem like such a big sacrifice. About half way into town, I realized just how much she’d outgrown the seat. Her knees had permanently taken up residency in my butt.

In a teasing manner, with that really annoying sing-song-y mom voice, I say:

Oh Kate, you are getting sooooo BIG! Your knees are touching my butt!

In the same mocking sing-song voice, Kate reciprocates:

Oh Mommy, YOU are getting soooo BIG! Your butt is touching my knees.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Who are you calling creepy?

Last weekend, we headed out of town to do some shopping. While the purpose was to obtain some apparel, I cannot resist the urge to visit a decent grocery store whenever one is in the general vicinity. I’m a food junkie. So, I found a way to work trips to Trader Joe’s and Whole Foods into the agenda. You city dwellers just don’t know how lucky you are. I was slightly more excited to go to Trader Joe’s than is healthy, considering it is just a grocery store and all.

When we arrived, Kate was insistent upon going in and bringing Baby Kate with us. You all remember sweet, darling , Baby Kate, don’t you? If you don’t, please click here (scroll to the second picture). Don’t worry, I’ll wait. The story isn’t nearly as spectacular without being able to envision the psychotic bride-of-chuckie looking doll that Kate is obsessed with.

Almost immediately upon entering the store, Kate found a Kate-sized shopping cart. Her interest in Baby Kate waned as she attempted to tally how many ankles she could mangle with her newfound cart. Somehow in the middle of this exchange, Baby Kate ended up sitting in my cart. Now, there are times that Kate is well behaved while shopping and there are times she is not. If you were at this Trader Joe’s on Saturday, you would have witnessed that it was a time where the check mark would have indisputably been placed in the “NOT” column. After the second aisle, Craig and Kate miraculously vanished into the parking lot and I enjoyed the rest of my shopping trip in peace. Well, until I entered the next aisle.

Enter creepy dude; six-foot tall, burly, intimidating, sunglass wearing creepy dude. He kept looking at me and the weird factor was increased by the fact that he was wearing sunglasses. So, I knew he was looking at me, but I couldn’t really tell what exactly he was looking at. This continued for the next few aisles. My discomfort multiplied exponentially with each additional encounter. The anxiety was less I THINK YOU MIGHT ACCOST ME IN A DARK ALLEY fear and more I THINK YOU MIGHT HAVE FORGOTTEN TO TAKE YOUR MEDICATION TODAY fear.

Finally, in the wine aisle (where else, right?), Creepy Dude says, “Excuse me?” I look up and his brows are raised over the brim of his glasses and he is just pointing. I hesitate for a moment, waiting for some words to exit his mouth. Smile, nod, and tilt my head to the left, “Yes?” He continues to point. “Yes?” Nothing. I quizzically turn to follow his nonverbal directive. That is when I see that his finger is pointing directly at my shopping cart. Here I am sans child, with a homicidal looking doll occupying the child seat of my cart.

He looks and me and waits. His confusion is evident.

“What?” I say shrugging my shoulders. “I’m sorry, was she bothering you? She’s just been so ill behaved lately, “I exclaim indignantly while I push my cart away.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Where I address the obvious...

Disclaimer: Where the word "you" is simply my way of addressing the general public, not you, my wonderful blog readers who are possibly the only YOU this doesn't apply to.

I realize that once your only child reaches the age of 3, it opens the door to a multitude of questions regarding plans for the “next one”. So, it doesn’t take me by surprise when I get that question from family, friends, mere acquaintances, and members of the general public. Do I seem unsure when I reply? Perhaps I am not sure how to respond to you. Despite that, people continue to question me, the inflection of their words implying that maybe I haven’t given thought to this matter at all. Is it possible that item didn’t pop up on my Outlook to-do list this month and I need a gentle nudge? Or maybe I am unaware that at best, my children will now be at least four years apart. It was helpful to have you around to assist with the math.

So, if I look like I am unsure of what to say to you, it is because I am. I don’t want to tell you about the last 18 months of medical nightmares. I don’t want to talk about the poking, the prodding, the tests, and the medication. I don’t want to explain that even though nothing serious appears to me wrong with me, things just don’t want to cooperate. I don’t want to explain that it is a big messy mixture of issues related to my reproductive system and issues that are not. Let’s just say that Blue Cross Blue Shield may throw a party if I ever were to switch medical insurers.

I don’t also want to tell you that despite all that, we did manage to get pregnant. I don’t want to tell you that we lost that pregnancy after 12 weeks of excitement and anticipation. I didn’t tell you about it when it happened and I really don’t feel like telling you about it now. I also don’t want to talk about how much more difficult that was than I ever could have fathomed.

I don’t want to tell you that it is difficult to manage the obligations that I have right now and I am a little gun shy after the havoc that has surrounded this particular topic for me. It sounds selfish, doesn’t it? Well, it is the truth. I don’t want to tell you that having a husband who is gone more than he is home is hard. There are days when I feel like it takes all that I’ve got to be the best mom that I can be to Kate. I don’t want to tell you that being a good mom is hard work and there are days that increasing that work scares me. I am a realist, but I know those are not the answers you are searching for when you ask.

But because you don’t know any of this, you still ask. And I still struggle with what to say to you, because I am not sure when it will happen. I am not sure if it will happen. I am not sure if it is something that could happen even if I were certain that I wanted it to happen. I am not certain when I’ll be certain. One thing I am certain of is that I am okay with whatever happens. But I don’t want to tell you that, because you won’t believe me and many of you will feel like you need to fix something, or will need to offer awkward words of encouragement or assistance. Some days, I stop and think that maybe God gave me Kate simply because she’s the only one I’ll get. So, if I am only going to get one chance, he was going to make sure I got the best of the best. I’m okay with that.

It isn’t because I don’t want you know (hello, I am writing about it on the WORLD WIDE WEB), I just don’t have it in me to go there and quite frankly, it bugs me. So, I’ve decided that I need to find an answer for when people ask this question. Looking like a deer caught in the headlights, stumbling over my words, and lacking the ability to say anything hasn’t really been all that effective. With that, here are my proposed responses:

“The crack was so hard to give up with the last pregnancy. I’m not sure that I can make that sacrifice again.”

“We can’t decide if we want a boy or a girl, so we are going to wait until we can make up our mind.”

“Oh, we already have another one. I just keep forgetting where I left him. Adjusting to two has been so hard.”

“I’m not sure how to make it happen, I seem to have forgotten. Do you have some instructions you could give me?”

“Kate turned out perfect and we just don’t want to “chance it” again.” (wink wink)

“The maternity line this season is so not me. I’m going to wait and see if they come up with anything better next year.”

“We can’t afford daycare for two. I’m waiting until Kate’s old enough to stay home and take care of the baby, so maybe when she is six.”

If you have any other suggestions, I’d love to hear them. Since I seem to get this question daily, having an arsenal of replies at my disposal would be rather helpful. And since we're friends and all, care to dwell on your shortcomings, and any uncertainties of your future? It’s really quite cathartic.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Don't tell me you've never done anything stupid

The other day, Pooba posted a video entry about people who portray perfect lives on their blogs. Prefect house, perfect husband, perfect kids, perfect friends,the quintessential perfect life. While I know those people must exist, I couldn’t help but laugh at my inability to relate to it. It was like she was speaking a foreign language and I was having difficulty comprehending the mere concept. I’m sorry, could you please speak slower and enunciate; I am unfamiliar with this pseudo-perfectionism of which you speak.

Let’s be real here. A small percentage of my readers are people that I know in real life. There isn’t enough money in my bank account to bribe them to conspire with any attempt to convert my real life into some idealistic one. As for the remainder of you … if you believe that I try to depict any degree of perfectionism, I will be bold enough to suggest that you may need to take a remedial reading course of some sort. This phenomenon of ego blogging has been taking up valuable brain real estate over the past few days as I’ve pondered the absurdity of it. Accordingly, it was also on my mind as I prepared to share what happened to me yesterday.

On my way to work, I hurriedly grabbed my laptop and added it to the plethora of things teetering in my arms. My laptop had been residing on my kitchen counter this week, along with many other various non-kitchen related items. On a positive note, at least it was easily accessible and on my way to the door, right? Can you handle the perfectness here? I bet all Stepford women keep their laptops, toddler shoes, and week-old Easter candy on the kitchen counter, right? While I was scooping up my laptop, I reached out to grab the power cord as well. While I love my new laptop, the duration of the battery life is apparently in direct competition with the diminutive attention span of my three year old.

Upon arriving to my morning meeting, I settled in and opened my laptop. I politely requested outlet access from a colleague seated next to me. I then proceeded to to extract the CORD TO MY ELECTRIC GRIDDLE. If it weren’t for the Big Ben sized heat control dial, I may have been able to conceal the evidence. Move along people, nothing to see here. I contemplated mentioning that my plan was to whip out my griddle and prepare some banana pancakes for the meeting. Considering my sarcastic appointment as goddess of the kitchen, I believe that may have increased the comedic value of the whole situation.

I thought it was appropriate that to point out that other than the obvious, I am the absolute poster child of perfection.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

At least I don't fart butterflies

Yesterday morning, I pulled up to the speaker at Starbucks, much like I do the other 364 days of the year, minus weekends and holidays.

Matt: Good morning Lyndsay.

Me: Good morning Matt.

Matt: The usual?

Me: Yes please.

Matt: I almost freaked out. I thought it wasn’t you after I said your name. It’s weird because every morning when you pull up, the sun is shining so bright and it is always right in your face. Half the time I can’t tell for sure if it’s you or not. I was worried I was going to say Lyndsay and it totally wasn’t going to be.

Me: Matt, that is just because I bring sunshine everywhere I go.

Matt: Of course you do. You burp rainbows too, right?

At that moment, I had a number of startling revelations. Matt is one of the only people that appreciates my humor and probably gives it back quicker than I can take it. Matt and I also know way too much about each other. He is training for a marathon. He frequents Target as much as I do (I mean did, shit, I’m supposed to be giving up Target, right?). He appreciates my quest to avoid all refined and artificial sweeteners. He and I are on a mission to convince Starbucks to offer Stevia in their stores, or in the very least sneak our own in to this particular store. He buys my coffee in the morning almost as often as I do. Most startling? I realized this morning that I see Matt more times per week than I see my husband. That is pathetic and shocking all in the same breath.

It is a good thing that I am married and Matt is gay, or this would have potential to be really awkward.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Five Bits and Pieces

Many moons ago (translation: six months), when I started this blog, Jeanne was one of my first faithful readers. She claims that she was drawn to my blog because of its title, but I prefer to believe it was strictly due to my magnetic personality. Regardless, she stuck around, which might mean she is of questionable character. Sorry about that Jeanne. In turn, I’ve spent a significant amount of time reading Jeanne’s blog. She’s a damn good writer. Seriously. On top of that, she’s smart, she’s funny, and she likes to have a good time. I think we might be long lost relatives. I’ve officially adopted Jeanne as my second mother; I’m hoping she won’t even notice the newly sprouted branch on the family tree. Without further ado, I give you my first guest post ever … from Jeanne at the Raisin Chronicles.

Confession: I was initially attracted to “I Used to Be Witty” because of the title.

Does that sound shallow?

Over time, as I came to know Lyndsay through her terrific blog, I realized that our affinity runs much deeper. She doesn’t do crafts. She’s uncoordinated. And a scosh anal.

This is a woman after my own heart.

So when she sent out an SOS after struggling with a sick toddler for the past week, I was more than happy to help out with a guest post. Whether you’re brand new to this blog, or a long-time fan, there are a few things it may be useful to know about Lyndsay.

1) She is a goddess in the kitchen.

I turn my back to check the oven and return to finish mixing the batter. Can’t find the fork. Where is the damn fork? Kate points to the bottom of the batter. I mean, why wouldn’t you bury the fork in the bottom of the bowl? Mom looks like she needs tested, right? While retrieving the vanishing fork, Kate picks up a mangled, half-eaten, infested banana…and throws it into the bowl.

I inform Kate that we aren’t cooking these putrid muffins. She rebukes with shrieks that knock the earth just slightly out of orbit, so I oblige *shudder*.

2) She’s frugal.

Craig brought the Corian samples home from work and told me to pick out what I liked. He said that the Corian would be about $150 a sheet and we would only need one. I wanted something that tied into our gray and white theme, yet offered a little color. I am daring like that. After excruciating debate, I picked the PERFECT color and we special ordered it. Three weeks later, the bill came for the Corian and it was $595!!!

3) She tucks money away for Kate’s future at every opportunity.

After we had THE CONVERSATION about how we do not watch Sponge Bob, the babysitter actually had to place Kate in the other room to calm down so she could get Sponge Bob off of the TV. Whoops. When did she start listening so well? We will need to put some extra in the therapy fund to cover this one.

4) She likes an occasional cup of Starbucks coffee.

…the other day I pulled up and the Voice Within the Speaker said, "Grande Non-Fat Vanilla Latte?" People this is NOT GOOD. I am on a most wanted poster at Starbucks, complete with drink of choice.

5) She adores Trick-or-Treat.

The highlight of our night came when we got to one of the last few houses in the subdivision. The lady was handing out jawbreakers the size…of tennis balls. I’m serious. You could forgive someone without kids, who might not realize what a bad idea a crater sized jawbreaker would be to a toddler. However, this lady is the mother of SEVEN children. There is no excuse. So, then I started thinking of the whole ideology that with the first kid you sterilize their pacifier, with the second you wash it under tap water, and with the third you don’t even wipe it off. Apparently by the time you get to #7, there is nothing sacred.

So, now that you know her a little better, I hope you’ll come back when the lady of the house can entertain you herself.

Jeanne thanks for taking the time to work on a guest post for me. I’m now wondering when I developed such an addition to caps lock … note to self: work on finding more appropriate ways to get your point across. Only Jeanne would be creative enough to grab splices of my blog and piece them together to tell you about me. Is it scary I forgot that I wrote most of them? Now I'll move on to deciding which of the above revelations is most frightening.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Not for the faint of heart

When Craig drinks beer, he typically doesn’t drink any old mainstream brand of beer. He likes more unique labels, microbrews, or at least something slightly out of the ordinary. I guess that means he’s a beer snob, which sounds like quite the oxymoron. When we go to a restaurant, I could easily wager the house on accurately picking which beer Craig will choose. If he’s never heard of it, there is no doubt that he is going to try it.

Tonight at dinner, he was busy looking over the beer list. Unlike most places we go, there were actually many choices at this particular establishment. The waitress took my order first; I ordered a Blue Moon. She looked at Craig next, waiting for his choice. Now, it is important to note that we weren’t alone at dinner. My brother, my mom, and Kate were all with us. Craig looks up and nonchalantly says, “I’ll have a Dirty Bastard.” Yes, apparently this is some kind of beer ...

I gave him THE LOOK. You know, the one reserved for people who have committed the most atrocious of sins. He would have received a friendlier look if he had asked me if I’d just put on 10 pounds. See, mothers have this sixth sense of foreshadowing things that their children will do, or say. It was at this particular moment I knew what was coming. Kids have this inane ability to gravitate towards any inappropriate word used in their presence. It is like some alarm goes off in their ear, signifying a word that they must REPEAT. MUST REPEAT. It must be a skill they are taught during How To Mortify Your Mother 101.

Kate: Dirty Bastard?

Panic. Panic. Panic. Do you begin the lecture? No, lecture will encourage it and amplify it with Kate. Wait. Breathe. Ignore it.

Kate: (tee hee hee) Daddy got a Dirty Bastard

Oh my gosh. She’s not going to let it go. What do I do? What do I do? Someone help me here, I am sinking. Why was I so embarrassed when she said SHUT UP last week? Shut up has nothing on this.

Kate: Dir-teeeeee Bastard

I hope the paramedics have been called, because I am certainly going to die here. Craig, you aren’t doing a good job concealing the fact that you are half a breath away from not being able to contain your laughter. Why does this always happen to me? There is no humor in this moment.

Kate: Dirty Bastard. Dirty Bastard.

You know this is totally going to come out at Sunday School tomorrow, right?

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

New Life Motto: Overachieving is Overrated

Admittedly, going into last week, I was already a little behind on life in general. I tend to operate on an excessively busy schedule and as long as I don’t encounter any unexpected obstacles, I handle my obligations well. However, that schedule just doesn’t have a lot of wiggle room, so all it takes is a minor hiccup in a day and my head starts spinning, as my schedule whirls out of control.

(Insert panic attack here)

This past weekend was going to be my “catch-up” time; I even took Friday off work to utilize some of that time marking things off my to-do list. I was so intent on marking things off that list that I momentarily contemplated adding things I had already done to the list, simply to garner to pleasure of placing a GIANT CHECK MARK next to them. I didn’t though. I simply looked forward to that three-day window as an opportunity to accomplish something.

Then the GREAT VIRUS ATTACK of 2009 happened. Yes, Rotavirus, the spawn of Satan, inflicted undue hardship on our house starting Friday a.m. and continued through yesterday afternoon. Needless to say, my weekend consisted of accomplishing absolutely nothing on my to-do list. That is not to be confused with accomplishing nothing, which would be inaccurate, as I was fulfilling my most important role – the role of mom.

What paybacks do you get for fulfilling that important duty? Well, this week I’ve felt much like I imagine the family from Blast from the Past did when they exited the bomb shelter, only to discover that life had continued on while they were sequestered away for 35 years. While I was only relegated to my house for four days, life in the external world kept chugging along.

When I showed up to work today, my to-do pile had multiplied. My email inbox hovered around the 200 mark. People expected answers on shit. I’m still pissed that the work elves didn’t show up and take care of anything in preparation for my return to work. When I arrived at class at 6:30 last night to teach 38 punks (who would rather be at the bar), they expected me to have something to instruct them on for three torturous hours. My group comrades for the class that I am currently taking (Organizational Theory) expect me to have something to contribute to the project we are currently working on. For some reason, I don’t think “I haven’t even read the case” constitutes appropriate contribution.

I think I am in denial, as my acceptable solution to this is to blog while I avoid reality.

Hold me.

Monday, April 6, 2009

The epitome of pathetic

Just look at this face, doesn't it just ooze heartache? This was taken a moment before we headed to the Pediatrician's office today.

Me: Kate, smile.

Kate: I can't.

Me: Smile Kate, show the camera your sick face.

Kate: Mom, I can't.

(I think she looks concerned that I am even asking)

Within moments, the Pediatrician reviewed her symptoms and promptly diagnosed her with Rotavirus. Right when I thought we were entering the safe zone (no fever, yay!), I was informed that as long as she is symptomatic, she is still contagious. Apparently we should be thrilled to see it run its course in seven days. Yes, that means three more days (if we are lucky) of pure hell. Since my luck errs on the side of NON-EXISTANT, I am guessing we will be on the 10-day plan.

There is no medicine, nor any magic cure. The only thing we can control is trying to stave off dehydration, which has been proving ineffably difficult. The Pediatrician offered many suggestions of things to try to hydrate Kate, which is great in theory, but not so helpful when the kid refuses to eat or drink. Each attempt to bring liquids to her mouth resulted in a screech, followed by the statement, “My belly huuuuuuuuuuuuuuuurts. I’ll try it later.” Yes, yes, that was the strange sound you heard when you were busy attending to your afternoon affairs. I am sure it registered on the Richter Scale.

Leaving the Pediatricians office, I had to directive to proceed to the ER if Kate did not pee by 10:00 p.m. tonight. Do not pass go, do not collect $200. Since I was flying solo in the parent world, and operating on a collective 10 hours of sleep over the past three days, the last thing I was signing up for was a trip to the ER. I was going to make that kid drink, even if it sucked the life out of me.

Me: Kate, just have a tiny sip.

Kate: No!

Me: Kate, just one little drink.

Kate: My belly hurts! I don’t want to! (insert earth shattering cries here)

Me: Kate, do you know what happens if you don’t drink?

Kate: What?

Me: You have to go to the hospital.

Kate: I don’t want to drink any-ting. (in exasperation)

Me: Do you know what they will do at the hospital?

Kate: What?

Me: They will give you a shot.

Kate: I’ll have a little drink of water.

And that would be how I avoided the ER tonight. Desperate times call for desperate measures. I threw my change in the cup labeled KATE’S FUTURE THERAPY FUND that has a permanent home on the kitchen counter.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Please excuse me ...

...while I clean up some puke.

If posting on this blog was my job, I'd be fired after this last week. My intention was to work on a nice post on Friday morning. At 11:45 a.m. I got the dreaded call from preschool ... the "Kate just threw-up" phone-call.

If you think that is bad, what is worse is that it hasn't ended. Fifty-four hours and our house is still infiltrated with vomit, emergency bathroom-attacks, temperatures in the 100's, and two (and counting) very sleepless nights.

If we could bottle this flu, it could certainly be used to halt terrorism. Who needs weapons of mass destruction when the enemy cannot make it off the toilet? And even if they could, chances are they'd be naked anyway because they've puked on every article of clothing they own.

I've never witnessed something this gruesome. Please tell me it is almost over - or send in reinforcement.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

I should probably be embarrassed about this, but I am not.

Is that concerning?

For years, Craig has taken great delight in mercilessly teasing me about my toes. They don’t bother me nearly as much as they bother him, and that alone bothers him much more than it should. Apparently people whose toe next to their big toe is longer than the big toe (no matter how I word that, it just doesn't come out right) deserve much scorn, shame, and embarrassment. Yes, my second toe … pointer toe … second in command to the big toe … in indeed the longest toe I have.

(Raise eyebrows here and crinkle your upper lip slightly)

I’m telling you this for a reason, I swear. Well, besides affirming to the world that I am even stranger than you initially thought and that Craig and I apparently have nothing better to talk about than my feet on a regular basis. Our conversations regarding my feet typically go like this:

CRAIG: Your feet are so weird.

ME: Come on Craig – you know what they say about people with toes like mine.

CRAIG: Um, nope. That you are weird.

ME: Yes, you do. Remember we have this conversation on a way too regular basis because you are freakishly obsessed with pointing out my unique attributes.

CRAIG: The weird ones?

ME: Ugh. It means that I am a LEADER, not a FOLLOWER.

CRAIG: No, it means you have square feet. You should just buy shoes, throw away the shoes and wear the boxes.

On a fairly regular basis, Craig returns to teasing me about my toes. A few years ago, in an attempt to irritate him even more about my toes, I realized something priceless. Do you know the dexterity you have with toes like this? I can expertly pick something up off the floor, with my feet, without even bending over. Craig can heckle me all he wants, but that is skill and is the epitome of multitasking and laziness all perfectly wrapped up in one. It also assists is a variety of stealth missions where retrieving an item from the floor, unbeknownst to others is an advantage.

Oh, what? How did that get up here? I don’t know. Did you pick it up? No, you didn’t bend over? Nope, me neither. Odd.

Not that I would ever think about actually using my toes to pick up things, but it is nice to know that I could, you know, if I ever needed to. Quadbidextrious? It’s been years since I’ve utilized this skill to annoy my husband. In fact, I sort of forgot about it in the arsenal of things I use TO DRIVE MY HUSBAND TO DELERIUM.

Until I turned around on vacation and saw this.

And moments later, this:

I watched as Craig looked at her. There was no way I could convince him that I hadn’t taught her that just to annoy her father. I swear, it must BE IN THE GENES. Who knows what that means for the poor kid? Teaching her to do that would have been sheer genius and there is no way I would be denying it if I could take the slightest bit of credit for it. Believe me.

And all my dear, dear husband could say was, “That’s great Lyndsay. She inherited your FINGERTOES!”