Monday, May 31, 2010

L: May 10



*Disclaimer - most of these pics were taken with my trusty celly.

Friday, May 28, 2010

Evacuation

Shortly after we discovered our mouse problem, I came home to a ringing room line.  The University’s Residential office was calling to inform us that we were being evacuated. Apparently the walls of the entire quad were filled with field mice.  The only way they could address the problem was to bomb the whole block of student housing. We were being asked to stay “with a friend” or a hotel.  A hotel the University would not reimburse for.  I fought with the idiot in the Residential Living Office claiming that it was the University’s responsibility.  I don’t remember how we got off the phone, but I remember being a real asshole to make a point.  None of my roommates were home, but knowing their love for sleep and their dislike for sharing; bunking with friends would not be an option.  Maybe we could all split a hotel room? All I knew is I had to pack, I didn’t want to be rushed and as soon as they came home and heard that the wall was full of mini beasts we’d be in my car before I had a chance to grab what I needed.   I pictured the scene as if the house was on fire - they would run screaming through out the quad with no hope for rationalization.

I didn’t take late classes, as I preferred to be home earlier.  My roommates liked to sleep until noon or have ample hours of designated nap time during the afternoon so I was always home first.  As I waited on the couch with my duffel bag packed and ready to go, I sat  in silence waiting for the crew to get home and tried to listen for the bastards taking over our wall linings. 

This was before cell phones, archaic I know.  It felt like I was waiting for hours when now I could have sent a text, updated a status or started a group “My apartment is taken over by mice!” Before all that technology was available we did crazy things like knock on doors. I wanted to see what the rest of the quad was going; we should all go together- try to get a group rate or something.  I started knocking on my neighbor’s door – to my surprise that bitch from Res Life hadn’t yet called everyone. I chalked it up to her trying to figure out the finance part. Before she had to deal with more angry students.  I let my neighbors know of the infestation and how we had to leave tonight, etc etc. As soon as I finished being the bearer of bad news for at least 2-3 apartments full of people I headed home and was greeted by my roommates. I dropped the bad news.  Instead of the historically comedic reaction I was counting on from Shaniqua I was met with denial.  NO one believed me – they said I must be joking.  Why would I lie about this? I explained I just went through the quad informing anyone who was home. Call the office for yourself! 

Then the phone rang.  

Maybe it was my cold reaction to Shaniqua’s fears of having mice parasites take over her intestines or maybe Tia Maria* couldn’t miss out on the fun. On the phone was a high school friend of Emilita & Shaniqua, Tia Maria.  Calling to let them in on the fun she just had with me.  Mrs. Whoever from the Res Life office was our very own Tia Maria  calling from her dorm room to have some fun. Prank calls are the genetic gift given to all of their home town's residents. There were no mice in the walls, there was no extermination, I didn’t need to pack up for the weekend – I needed to go through the quad and take back what I had just explained – if only I could have text them, updated my status or sent an email.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Popcorn = The Key to Success




Sunday we went to the movies for the first time with the kid. It could have been the best idea ever or perhaps the worse. We got there and was informed that we were in the Odyssey theater. All I needed to know was is it in 3D, that wasn’t going to fly. It wasn’t – but apparently it’s the largest theater around. The screen is 5 stories high.

We had been talking how “cool” it was going to be when the lights went off and how fun it was going to be because it would be so loud. She was buying it hook line and sinker. Loving life and eating popcorn our of a bucket she probably could have sat in with room to spare.

Loving life.

Then it got a little hairy. It was t&g for a few minutes when they started the movie. There was an ad for the hibachi place we recently had to evacuate. I was worried.

The worrisome feelings were quickly washed away with pure panic as the first movie preview was this fantasy M Knight Something-or-Another movie featuring special effects in 3d-ish of you guessed it. FIRE.  The description of the movie, I hope can paint a picture.

Aang (Ringer), a young successor to a long line of Avatars, learns that he possesses the power to engage the Fire Nation and hopefully end their century-long war against the Water, Earth, and Air nations.

Oh Fire Nation, of course. Does that not “do it” for you? Here is the preview we saw – now picture it 5 stories high.  Pitch black. And so loud, I’m surprised you didn’t hear it where you were on Sunday.




At :09 I’m thinking, Oh I hope that flying thing isn’t scary.
At :12 I’m thinking, Mother chuck, are you freaking serious?
At :30 Oh great flying thing AND fire. Awesome. 
It’s at this point she grabs C’s arm so tight, I thought he’d come home with out it.
At 1:31 Please don’t find water frightening now. Please Jesus.
At  1:49 I’m thinking – Pack your bags we’re outta here.

We asked if she was ok, if she was having fun. If she was shocked and never going to speak again. I then asked her to blink if she could hear me. I decided, despite of her lack of response, we’d solider on.

Side note, really movie theater? Really – before freaking Sherk we’re going to have a fire,war sequence? You think glow in the face 10 year olds fighting dragons and fire make sense? Come on. Pull yourself together.

Despite an opening scene with some pitch forks and more fire, she eventually let go of C (long enough to grab some more popcorn) and we knew it'd be OK.

She loved it, she finally let go, laughing at the funny parts and yelling at the screen like a good little distracter should. When Sherk would get himself in trouble she’d ask “Ooooh NO! What’s gonna happen?!” It was really fun.

As we left she said Sherk was her favorite movie.  She looked at me and proclaimed,  "Momma that was fun, funny. I love Movie and popcorn." 

It turns out bring enough candy and popcorn she'll sit through a movie. The was the secret to our success.  Stomach ache be damned!
Personally, I’m thrilled; movies are possible! Toy Story 3 here we come. I pointed to the movie poster on the way out – to get her excited for our next trip to the movies.  She wants to go "tomorrow". Middle of June will have to be good enough!


Friday, May 21, 2010

Fear of Eggs


Picture it, my senior year of college my roommates and I sat on the couch -  watching TV – likely a little General Hospital, our afternoon jam.  There were 5 of us total in that apartment. 4 official roommates and a squatter. Shaniqua, Leona, Emilita, me and Liza. For fun, that's what we'll go with.* 

Shaniqua sat on the smaller couch chomping on the just debuted Doritos 3D.  About 15 minutes into her snack I looked over and thought I’d sample the tasty treat – asked for the bag and begrudgingly  she handed it over. 

As I dove into the bag I realized that there was slim pickings, as she had devoured the bag with the exception of a few crumbs.  Before I could give her a hard time my hand, as it searched for more than scraps, had more freedom than expected.  My hand went through the bag.  As I inspected the issue it became clear that Shaniqua was not the first in the house to snack on the 3Ds.  The corner of the bag was completely chewed out – so large that it was with no effort I could reach through the bag and wave to my unsuspecting roommate on the other side of the room.

And wave I did.

Confused, I had to explain that the little bitty teeth marks and the missing corner of the bag indicated to me we had more than 4 girls & 1 squatter living in this apartment. I was no Nancy Drew, but the clues seemed to tell a story.

Shaniqua jumped off the couch and started dry heaving.  As I died laughing at the sight of such a reaction I went outside to talk her off the ledge.  As she dry heaved into the bushes outside our front door her fear was vocalized and my hysteria only increased as her fears were explained.

“Oooh my god!!!!! What if I ate mouse eggs???? Will mice babies hatch inside my stomach??????”


*Disclaimer: All true identities have been changed to protect the guilty.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Who IS This Girl?

There are a lot of things that confuse me about L. Blond hair, blue eyes, super tall, albino white skin. If she didn't look like C would if he were an adorable little girl or make my facial expressions every once in awhile I'd swear I picked up the wrong child.

Her girliness is no different. It is no joke. She loves pink and purple, dresses and HEELS.  No seriously, she loves to wear heels. I repel heels.   Every once in awhile I forget how different we really are and then BOOM I'm smacked upside the head with a love of heels.

The last few days she's been chatting about getting her nails done.  We aren't 100% sure where she got this notion from.  In the babysitting room at C's gym he thinks there is a little girl with nail polish. Next thing I know she is asking daily about her dang nails.  It's kind of too cute so off I went to the store, because lord knows I don't have any nail polish up in this piece.

Oh that and she wanted blue.
BLUE.

What's a mom to do but make sure her girly girl smiles like she does when she gets a look at her painted nails. As soon as she got her nails done - she asked Dora (on DVD) if she liked her nails.  Then she took a long stare at her hands, looked at her Daddy and pronounced - "Daddy. I need rings." 

There's my girl.

Now he is trying to get her to say - "If you like it then you better put a ring on it" Awesome. The teachers will just love this tomorrow


Friday, May 14, 2010

Unexpected Wonderful

Seven years (and a few months) I made an important shift.  I started a new job for the first time in a long time. I was the new kid on the block.  I walked in to my team room, taking it all in.  While I had been out of college for a few years at this point and have held several positions, moving up quickly with in management teams and positions, I was in a different world.  I worked in smaller groups, never in large offices and frankly didn't know what I was in for.

The building was gorgeous.  Bright beautiful colors on the walls, with in the office furniture - there is a freaking pond inside.  Chipper people, everyone is smiling, the floors are color coded - I mean in comparison on where I was coming from (more on that at another time) I thought I should be skipping to my desk. I almost did.  I remember walking into my team room - holding seven of us comfortably with these massive desks the likes of Ikea would be proud of. Bright things were ahead, until I met my teammates. 

With my 'desk buddy' I was face to face with the happiest person I have (yet) to ever meet. Like sugary sweet, too much time you might get diabetes. For real. She has never cursed (true story).  A favorite of mine was her alternative for shit. Sugar Foot. True. I am fairly certain I called my mother to tell her about this, it really concerned me that she had never cursed before. Seriously, isn't that concerning? Her response will show you how or why I might think that is so confusing.

"What the fuck is Sugar Foot?"

We'll call this bird the Sweetheart. My desk buddy, scared as I was of her nice always smiling and creepy true and honest love for all, my desk buddy she was.  Sugar foot and all.

Across from me was THE Bride.  I learned a lot about weddings during the months leading up to her big days.  Beyond all things, I learned you can be frightened down to your soul and rarely show it. Sugar to my front, beyond frightening to my left and there I was in the corner or vortex of confusion.

Next to THE Bride, was the Guy.  The only guy for as far as the eye could see (for the most part).  At first, he creeped me out.  He was forever offering back massages.   Sure, it was like shooting fish in a barrel but give it a rest Casanova. NO I do NOT want a massage.  (Fast forward - I have to say I eventually gave in and pretty amazing.  The back massage, get your head out of the gutter.)

My boss, let's keep it simple - the Boss, sat in the corner, literally on top of her screen.  She would use a paperweight glass to see statistics and never said hello when we saw each other in the hallway.  To be fair, I found out later she was legally blind - but no one told me. For weeks, I just thought this bird was nuts.  I also once told her she shouldn't sit so close to the computer screen, she could go blind. Turns out I was a little late.

In the corner were two desk buddies that I'm fairly certain didn't speak. At all.  I called them both the mute girls. One had a velvet skirt on day one, I believe it was blue with a black shirt. I called and phoned a friend on this one.  I am habitually a pretty horrid dresser - but even with the (lack of) skills I have I was pretty sure black, blue (and I think brown?) combinations and velvet were out.  I needed to check in on that though, I could be wrong.  These two birds - didn't talk for what I believe to be weeks or months.  I'm not sure.  They were really successful with the role though - they had happy customers, happy teams, all was happy in that corner of the world.  I don't recall how I found that out though because again, no words.

I remember telling people that I didn't know about this job or this environment.  I'm working closely with these seven people and they are so not my people.  Not even close. I didn't think I'd find my people in this team or even cross teams. I didn't see it.

I must have been as blind as the Boss (yea I did).


  • The Sweetheart was the FIRST person I called when I realized I had a crush on C.
  • The Mute (non velvet) has become a trusted friend, colleague, confident and home girl bails me out of many situations - including allowing me to borrow her veil for my big day.
  • The Mute (velvet) was in my wedding and this summer I am honored to be apart of her big day.  (Now called my B.) Despite being in different states and sometimes different time zones we fell in love despite the velvet and I consider her one of my best for a lifetime kind of friend.

Three incredibly influential people who remain my friends today.  There are more characters in this crazy band, but I'll start here.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

How I break news (wordless - kinda - wednesday)

*No, I am not breaking any news here. Just a Mother's Day surprise from my B to wish me a Happy Mother's day and all that. How it all began.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Away We Go

For years C & I have talked being Euro bound. I think he just wants to have the opportunity to say "Hey look kids, there's Big Ben, and there's Parliament."  Whatever the reason - we have been talking about London & Amsterdam forever.  For.Eva. Every time we think we have time to go - we don't. Each time we think we should go, we can't - every Christmas we say we should have, could have but never do. Flights are best in the summer but I have never approached time off in the summer, over the last 7 years.  I mean most people do, but me. I don't have kids with the summer break, and it just never seems to be a priority.  Usually, truth be told, I don't take all of my vacation time. I actually have pretty fantastic vacation time with the company I work with.  Due to the time I've been with the company it seems like I have so much vacation it'd be impossible to take it all - not that I even try.  The only time I did use up all of my vacation time was when L came along, thank you paid maternity leave. God bless you.   It's horrid and a habit that I believe is hereditary (thanks, Dad).  I hope that it doesn't get passed down to my offspring.  Among other things... like my "temper", misunderstood sense of humor (which is often perceived as a temper), (lack of) athletic abilities or (lack of) patience. I digress ... this year we are trying something different. We are doing it. Finally and away we go.

C's birthday is close to mine - he comes first and I had some big plans - not huge but big.  Around that time Abelle was in the hospital and we had Disney coming up.   C was pretty specific, he asked that I not go crazy - and let's keep it responsible.  I didn't go forward with the second part of my gift and on his birthday I led in with 3 t-shirts and an arm band for his iPod.  Responsible. There it is. What do I get for my efforts?

A combo birthday baby mama gift came my way.  Amsterdam. Holl.ER.  Seriously? Really? How's that iPod arm band looking now. I might as well have come bearing a card that said "Smile, this is your gift."  Of course I feel horrible, but that was short lived with extreme excitement!  F it. It's not like C isn't going to be coming - he'll have fun so how bad should I feel?

We looked into confirming flights, we figured we'd take a few days on either side of a weekend - 4 / 5 days away. The more we looked into it the more it made sense to stay a week.  I got approval for the time off and BOOM we booked it DanO. As we skipping around the house in celebration of our European adventure we thought about it - 7 days in The Netherlands sounds glorious but we were just going to Amsterdam - sure there are gardens, museums, canals, clubs (you know me and clubbin... get your glow sticks out it's trance time - this here is my sense of humor, FYI.), the Red Light District, bars & coffee shops... oh and then there are "coffee" shops - but 7 days? Might be much.  What's a girl to do? Look into making dreams come true.  BooYah - London here we come! "Hey look kids, there's Big Ben, and there's Parliament." P.S. it doesn't hurt that flights are bloody cheap.

We booked it and now it's all about planning. We won't go in blind like we did for Disney, we'll be planning every day to make sure we get the most of our time - because this is it.  Probably our final adults only vacation for quite some time.  Post summer we'll have to start thinking about procreation again... I can't keep avoiding it's about that time.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

I’ll Show you Mine if You Show me Yours

I've been blogging for three years - well 3 years and 6 days but who is counting.  According to my stats I average 21 visits per day.  21 is a nice number - I mean it's the age to (legally) drink so that's nice? Right? Not really because I'm thinking when you take that number and take out a few given numbers we go into the teens.

We have my mom, who I'm thinking accounts for at least 3 of those hits - like meal time she refreshes through out the day, my in-laws (hey!), I hear C has a friend from college whose mom reads, at least 2 of C's coworker, my co-worker and loyal bloggyfriend and MyMy.  Hey all. Welcome back.

The other 11 people... glad to have you. Truly.  I know there are others that read or come by to see what's going on - maybe not on the regular but you're here. What up. I get emails, texts, or FB messages assuring me you are here. Holla.

Numbers are funny.  Until the other day I had 9 followers, officially. I'm up to 13 and couldn't be more thrilled. Oh wait, I could. How'd I jump?

A friend of mine,  Wombat Ward, blogging 3 days brought you here. Sure. I haven't moved across the world - fair enough.  But for serious what do I need to do to get a comment on this bad boy? Oh wait. I know - my poor dog has to be on a decline to get some life lines out there.

Oh no my reflection is appearing angry when really it's all about happiness right now.  Here's the thing, I've been writing for me - truly only for me.  That said I wouldn't lie that it doesn't make me skip around the house when I get a comment or two. How can I increase that?  How can I write in a way that compels you, the lurker, to delurk?  From Wikipedia, the definition of a lurker:  In Internet culture, a lurker is a person who reads discussions on a message boardnewsgroupchatroomfile sharing or other interactive system, but rarely or never participates actively. Research indicates that “lurkers make up over 90% of online groups” (Nonnecke & Preece 2000).  There is a National Delurker Day - and we'll get there but who am I to move up the holidays?

Instead I'm going to do something about it - first by asking and reminding you to comment every once in awhile.  Let me know you are out there you creepy voyeur. Why not? Aren't my welcoming words helping? Second I'm going to marry my personal and professional passions and I'm going to learn how to make this happen.  I'll be networking, do some hands on learning ... fun and fabulous opportunities I can't even stand it (in a GREAT way).  I got the nod from BlogHer '10.  Holl.ER.  Mozel Tov to ME! Even better? I get to go with a friend who is just as goofy excited as me. And by Goofy I mean Snoopy.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Jackpot

Ever find a fantastic product or service and to boot it's a kick ass mission or has value or ethic that rocks the house too? And then in other news, it's fun and hilarious?

Jackpot.

One of my favorite parts come from the way they do business: 

"Modern Bird Studios doesn’t believe in the saying, ‘it’s nothing personal, it’s just business.’ Modern Bird Studios isn’t ‘just’ business, and Modern Bird Studios is something extremely personal to Gregg and to his family."

The even better part - their art is amazing. I found out about Modern Bird Studios by way of Scary Mommy.  I mean seriously how amazing is this? I started following on Twitter and I am SOLD. In going through their site - and then their blog I learned they interview bloggers which make for some fun and interesting reads, amazing dedications and even a photo tour of their diggs . Seriously. Totally. Sold.

Now I just need to figure out which freaking picture to choose and lord knows I have a 'few' to choose from. What would make me choose faster? Winning. OH to be a winner!

Emily, over at The Boutique Cafe is hosting a contest this week that would make me a proud winner of something like this (I'd use my own kid... of course that would be weird if I didn't?)  She sent in this picture ...

IMG_0026

After much discussion on colors etc she got this:

proof

No seriously. I NEED. Of course - our family but you get the idea.

Monday, May 3, 2010

(Not) Out of the Woods


Time is a funny thing.  At first, we were told that we needed to wait three days to see how things would turn with Abelle.  3 days came and went and then we were told 2 weeks (after not being told of this magic 2 week period) and now 3 total weeks since the debacle and there is more waiting. Why not disclose all these times at ONE time?

I brought Abelle for her follow up appointment and thanks be to geez I was able to get her in with the real doctor and not Doogie.  Here's the thing - now that we are past 2 weeks into 3 we are STILL not done waiting and the pup is STILL not in the clear.  That said, it looks good.  We have to continue to limit her exercises which the dog is not really loving. I mean, little does she know that it's rest or rest in peace - so I'll take her getting annoyed.  For a good picture on how she will continue, we'll need to wait a total of 6 weeks (new number anyone??).  It could take months for her to 100% back - and she may not ever be 100% back to normal but everyday we should see a little bit of healing, which we have.  She'll always be prone to this sort of thing, so the Doc recommends getting steps... onto our furniture. I keep trying to explain, she isn't actually allowed on the furniture.  I guess even with that the case if she wants to go on the furniture and she isn't listening we should make it easier to avoid continued ruptured discs. I'm going to table the steps possibility, for now. 

We're going to keep on, keeping on for the next few weeks. She still trips up from time to time but I'm hoping in a few months she'll be running around.  Not too fast or on slippery surfaces or up a hill or down steps... hopefully she'll just mosey.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Things I Learned

Every year I travel around this time for work, like clockwork it was time to hit the road again.  The weekend shifts around from time to time, up until a year or so ago I would celebrate my birthday on the way to or back from an exciting (and long) weekend away.  Whenever I go, wherever I go, I learn a lot.  I learn things I'll use everyday, in the future, or only to use in a wacky story that starts with glow in the dark stage tape and ends with hugging an LA Laker so hard that I didn't realize until it was too late that my ear was at his belt buckle. This year was no different. I learned a lot.

1. I learned Disney isn't horrible, in fact - the rumors are true.  It IS magical.  When I found out we were going to the magical wonderlands of Orlando I have to be honest - I was more than slightly afraid.  I swore I would never take any kid of mine to the money pit that is Disney World.  Now? Now I would go back.  Tomorrow. It is truly magical.  For everyone, anyone, at any time. True story.

A Two Year Old's Happiness = Meeting the Fish of Your Dreams!
2.  Before I could see this kind of joy, I was able to experience my own kind of joy. I learned of the kind of joy that just can not be explained.  Joy in the form of liquid.  The kind of coffee that is an experience from the look of it, the glass it is in, the taste or the magical taste to delivery vehicle.  An angel from above in the strangest of forms. In addition to quotes (not only said but written on napkin notes) that would normally freak the girl that I know me to be like "hugs around your heart" it was my everything for 4 glorious days.


3.  I learned people have weird habits. Flattening coins and then collect them and these machines are everywhere. Everywhere. It's magical.
The MAGIC is flattened and lives on.
4.   Epcot is not (just) for kids. I mean sure there are rides, Nemo and wonderfulness but there is beer. Wonderful beer. Oh and Soarin. What a freaking amazing ride, especially after all those wonderful beers.

5.  Traveling with work is fun but the family joining post work is pretty much THE best.  And ears should now be a constant accessory to all family photos.


6.  Saying see you later is just as hard as goodbye.

The band will be back together, in no time.
*This list was brought to you by jCg inspired by a (pointing blame) friend O mine, Mom on the Run.

(c) 2007 all rights reserved. aka don't be a D and swipe any content, photos, etc - sucka. Should you be tempted, let me know so I can be flattered and then give me something write about.