Monday, February 28, 2011

When To Wear A Scarf

When to wear a scarf:
When you are driving your convertible with the top down on a Pacific Northwest February day,
Or standing around outside for an hour while your nephew plays in the snow.

When not to wear a scarf: walking! At least, that's how it is for me! I bundle up against the cold, but have a silent debate with myself whether to scarf or not to scarf. I'll look super cute with it on, but gosh darn my internal oven! I heat up so fast, the scarf is always overkill. Two blocks into my walk I know I'll be tossing my scarf aside and unzipping my coat halfway.

Still. It is a lovely, lovely scarf made by my talented sister. I look at it longingly when I head out to walk.

Nope. There is a time and a place for my scarf. And walking is definitely when not to wear it!

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Waffleloo, Couldn't Resist If I Wanted To

I love waffles. Love 'em. Like, I could eat them for breakfast, lunch and dinner. And when I have leftover squares in my fridge, I can not resist toasting them up for a breakfast treat. Or a lunch time treat. Or a late night snack treat.

I say a sign of a good waffle is that it only needs some butter to top it. I don't want to toot my own horn, but my waffles are delish with only butter. Or as my nephew is proving right now, they are good cold with nothing on them at all!

It's just that when it comes to waffles, I can't resist, even if I wanted to. I get the waffle iron out on a Saturday morning, and I want. I see the piping hot squares, fresh from the iron, and my mouth waters with want. I see them in the fridge and I want.

Waffles. It's what's for breakfast, lunch and dinner.

At least for today! I have a lot left over from this morning's batch. I'm trying to pace myself, spread the joy that is waffles through out the day. Since my nephew ate some for breakfast and some for his mid morning snack, I say my plan is working!

Friday, February 25, 2011

Snow Day

Snow Day!
Doesn't look like much, but there you have it. Our Snow.
Enough for snowmen, snowballs, and good times.

Just watch out for dog poop.
Even if you can't see it, it's still there.
It's the only downside to having three dogs, as far as I can tell!

Thursday, February 17, 2011

I Died A Thousand Deaths Today

But you wouldn't have known it to see me. I smiled and talked and worked and did everything I was supposed to do....

All the while pretending I didn't have the worst, tweaked out bangs in the history of bangs.

I'll start at the beginning of my day with the snow.....actually.....I'll start at the beginning....conception and growth in my Mom's cozy womb. Somehow a cow got in with me and licked and licked and licked and that wasn't actually amniotic fluid I was born with. It was cow saliva. All that licking licked a lovely swirly into my still forming hair other words, I have a cowlick. Several actually. (Sorry Mom, but the truth had to be told!)

In technical terms, a cowlick is a section of hair that stands straight up or lies at an angle at odds with the style in which the rest of a person's hair is worn. And I have a dozy of one that makes one side of my bangs do strange, crazy, curly Q sort of things.

Fast forward to today, I walked to work because it had snowed and I just thought I'd rather not have more snow fall make me abandon my car at work and trudge home in heels. I wore tennis shoes and socks and enjoyed the brisk weather.

My cowlick did not enjoy the walk. It curled up as soon as I started and by the time I got to work the damage was immense. Now, if I just had a mini flat iron at work, I could have fixed the problem. Instead, I had to work 8 hours with what I knew were crazy bangs.

And speak at a meeting. With crazy bangs.

All the while, pretending that I meant my bangs to look like that. It don't bother me none. I LIKE to have crazy bangs.


I died a thousand silent deaths for 8 hours and as soon as I got home, I traded in the tights and heels for pirate pants and flip flops, and turned on my flat iron.

Ah. Bliss. The cowlick has been tamed for the next few hours!

Side note, that same cow found it's way into my womb while I was gestating my two kids.....and gave my darling babies cowlicks in the same place as mine. Cows. They do the funniest things.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

How The Self Righteous Fall

Oh, how the self righteous fall! Usually a painful crash landing back to the realms of reality.

That is me right now.

All fall and winter, I have been HEALTHY. Gasp! For most of my childhood, I had a cold or pneumonia, it was half dozen of one, six of the other. As an adult, I seemed to outgrow that constant illness....until that is, the kids went back to school and brought home every bug they could.

I could expect a cold or two, usually something that required nyquil and a stack of pillows so I could sleep at night without too much coughing. BTW, after 17 years of sleeping next to me, my darling husband wishes me to the couch when I get sick. I agree wholeheartedly. I'd wish myself to the couch too, but wishing doesn't actually have the strength to move and at 3 in the morning, I'm in no condition to get up.

But this year, I've been virtually germ free! Even working in the doctor's office hasn't gotten me. I've felt an immense amount of pride with this accomplishment.

Of course, it all has to end. You can't have kids in school and work at a doctor's office without getting sick sometime. I started feeling a tickle at the back of my throat six days ago. I've had a day or two that I thought I was better, only to wake up feeling so much worse.

Today, though, I feel like I am on the mend. For reals. I didn't break anything in my fall back to real life, my nose is only this side of bright red, my voice is fading in more than it is out, and if I could breath just a bit deeper, I'd have been on my Wii this morning.

I can't wait to feel well all the way! To be able to smell things again will be a joy.

Or not. I heard some rumblings from the kitchen that one of the dogs has a very "dog" smell. If I could smell again, I'd have to figure out which one needs a bath and which crate needs a wash.

I'll stay sick a little longer, thank you very much!

Monday, February 14, 2011

To My Valentine

I am not a poet.
I am a writer, a thinker, a quoter.
I have nothing new to add
To true love words from hearts so glad.

I am Yours. You are Mine.

Twenty years have sped by
Here's to twenty more, times five.
In other words.....
Till the end of time.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

You Caught Me Kissing

If ever a book captured my love for my husband through the last 20 years, and what I hope will be many, many years into the future, it is "You Caught Me Kissing" by Dorothy Bridges. I got it from the library on a fluke because I liked the tittle (which is pretty close to the tittle I'd use for my own marriage 'They Always Held Hands'), but from the dedication on, I was caught. I didn't skim, I didn't pause, I didn't want to stop.

I did need a box of tissues.

From You Caught Me Kissing, page 46:

A Valentine is more to me
Than just a red frivolity-
A satin heart, a tinseled sweet
Are empty symbols, incomplete.
A Valentine is when you rise
To hush-a-bye the baby's cries.
A Valentine is when you phone
And say, "Hi, Ma, what's new at home?"
A Valentine is when you shout,
"Take off that apron, let's eat out!"
A Valentine is when we kiss,
Or talk at home one hour unharried.
My Valentine I say is this-
The great big joy of being married.

Thank you, Dorothy. That is my idea of true love.

Friday, February 11, 2011

I Will Not Join A Gym

At least not until the kids are grown.

I was sitting in the parking lot of our local athletic club, waiting for my daughter and her robotics club to get done testing their robots out in the pool. I watched all sorts of people walk in and out of the club: young and old, thin and not so thin, and I thought about how it was an easy 15 minute or less drive here from our house. I could easily do it.

I started calculating when I could do it, figuring 30 minutes for driving, an hour for gym time, and I just don't have 1.5 hours to carve out of my day. I take an hour in the morning to exercise. If I'm at home, the kids have access to me for saying things like, "I need a check for lunch money" or "have you seen my shoes"..... And in the evenings we eat dinner together, we watch our shows together, we snack on popcorn or ice cream together. We are really a family that does things together.

The thing is, it's time away from the kids. And I don't have that much time left while they are still "kids"

There will be plenty of time later to work out at a gym and loose the baby weight. might be 20 years after the last baby by the time I loose it, but that's okay.

It's totally worth it.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

For The Love Of Dogs, Part Two!

The other morning,while I was doing my Wii fit, I thought I heard a dog make a throwing up noise. I left my exercise, mid step, and rushed into my room where all three dogs were in my bed, under the covers.

I stood there listening for the noise again. The noise. All you dog owners know what I'm talking about. That heaving gurgle dogs give when they are going to toss their cookies. But our dogs were silent and still.

I must have imagined it.

Fast forward to bed time. My husband and I crawl into bed, tired, ready to snuggle up and talk about our days happenings, when I stretch my feet down to the end of the bed....and scream.

There is something cold and slimy in bed with us!

We threw back the covers and saw that one of the dogs had indeed tossed their cookies in our bed. We jump out of bed and stand there staring. OMG. Then we look at each other and start to laugh. It's a quick clean up, fresh sheets are found, my feet get a good washing, then it's back to bed where we laugh about it some more.

It's a good thing we love our dogs so much, otherwise that could have been a disastrous event.

Or it's a bad thing, a sure sign that we are in fact, two of the dog craziest people ever.

Six of one, half dozen of the other I always say!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Why Grandmas Rock

If you are lucky enough, and I have been very lucky, you grow up with a couple great Grandmas. Grandmas who shower you with love, make their house your haven, and appreciate all your long stories.

If you are lucky enough, and I am, you have fantastic memories of just hanging out at Grandma's house; of chocolate chip cookies baked just for you or watching All My Children and getting hooked on "the stories" or playing Clue with a plate of cookies carefully counted out to be fair or making candles and homemade snow globes.

If you are lucky enough, and I can't deny that I am, you will carry these memories into your adult life. You will think of your Grandmas as you bake chocolate cookies or when you catch up with Erica Kane or when you plan a craft for your nephews to do or when you roll the dice and still can't get into the room you want.

If you are lucky enough, and I am beyond lucky, you will treasure all the times you sat at the table and just visited. You will still be able to feel the grain of the table under your hands, you will smell the wonderful scent that is pure Grandma, you will feel the love that helped make you who you are today.

If you are lucky enough, and I am without a doubt, you will know that you can trace your love of dogs, crafts, and coffee to your Grandmas. You will know even if you hate blood sausage, can't solve a word jumble to save your life, and find Brigadoon to be the most boring movie ever, you are still an awful lot like your Grandmas, in all the ways that really count.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Sick Days

There have been many days since I went back to work and my kids turned into functioning young adults that when they are staying home sick, I still go to work.

I know my son will sleep off and on all day in his bed, with his favorite sick day movies playing. My daughter will establish herself on the couch and watch marathons of Law & Order SVU in between cat naps. When I was a kid staying home sick I watched Perry Mason and The Rockford Files and any movie on that was black and white.

When I was a kid I had good old Lipton tea, sweetened with sugar and cooled with a splash of milk. My kids want chai tea with honey. They will want chicken noodle soup from a dry mix. They will ask for Snapple instead of my childhood wish of 7up. They will listlessly munch on cheese crackers instead of saltines.

There are so many things they want that are different than my own childhood wishes, but some things never change. Having your mom stay home when you are sick is sometimes the best medicine in the world.

And not just for the sick kid either. Sometimes, as the Mom, it makes you feel better to be here just in case your kid needs you.

That is why I am home today. Sure, my son is on the downhill slide into 16, and he is mostly sleeping upstairs, but I am here. Just in case he needs more Snapple or a cold rag or just about anything.

I don't know about him, but I feel better all ready.

Friday, February 4, 2011

Baby Fever

I lied recently. Wanting a baby and knowing you are done doesn't get easier. Sure, most days it's great.... I can honestly say that. I love my family, our TWO kids are exactly what we needed to complete us.

That being said, when my Mom mentioned that my daughter L is most likely, probably for sure, her only granddaughter and some one said "Michelle, you still have time to change that," followed by everyone, including myself laughing, the idea of holding one of our babies again hit me.

Yep. The idea of 'done' is a wee bit harder today. I'm sure that will go away when the kids come home with their friends and I am bombarded with "can I have this or can I do that and what's for dinner?"

Also, I shouldn't have come home with that on my mind and watched Lifetimes new show "One Born Every Minute".....

Baby fever! I'll just pet one of the dogs until I feel better. And maybe find a hidden piece of chocolate candy to enjoy before the kids get home!

Thursday, February 3, 2011

I've Fallen Off The Bread Wagon

Or maybe, more accurately, I've fallen onto the bread wagon and I do not want to get off!

I really do try to limit my bread intake, though. Counting carbs and all that. I don't buy rolls to have with dinner, I usually don't buy fancy bread that would be perfect all toasted and smothered in butter and I really only allow myself a real sandwich (with two slices of bread) on very rare occasions.

That being said, I had a coupon for Hawaiian rolls. I love these soft, slightly sweet, bites of heaven. The coupon was for buying two and saving $ the commissary that made one bag of rolls almost free. It's a win, win situation!

I froze one bag and served the other for dinner. I did really well, just had two, but since then bread is all I think about. I want a sandwich, I want toast, I want biscuits and scones and bagels......

I've resisted. Mostly. Had three biscuits at my Mom's house, but as previously mentioned, my Mom's biscuits are too die for! Today when I got home early, with my lunch salad not being very satisfying or filling, I was going to cut up an apple, eat a yogurt, but then I saw the Peanut Butter and it was on like Donkey Kong.

I was standing at the counter eating stale crackers smeared with PB.

In my defense for the crackers, we are out of bread!

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Roller Skating Down Memory Lane

For Christmas, I gave my husband two season passes to our local Roller Derby. We went to the first bout over the weekend and it was so much fun! The bleacher seats, where we are all packed in knees to backs, all 2400 of us, isn't fun, but everything else is.

Watching those ladies whirl around the track fills me with envy. No, I have no desire to be a derby girl (you get HURT when you do Roller Derby and I don't like to be hurt) but I was envious of the wind in their hair and the wheels on their feet.

I remember roller skating as a kid. I remember going to a rink with my sister, Mom, and my Aunt Susie when I was just a little and trying to get the hang of moving with skates. I remember being older and getting skates for Christmas (best gift ever) and taking lessons and spending hours racing around the rink with Michael Jackson's music blasting.

As an adult, I haven't skated. One time when the kids were little, I put on skates, had the rink lady tighten them up so I wasn't so likely to fall and I wobbled around the rink. I was so embarrassed! It's not like riding a bike, apparently, where you never forget the art of balancing and pedaling.

But watching Roller Derby made me want to try again. I want to tie on some skates (old school, four wheels kind) and try again.

I do have more cushioning on my tush now than I did then for when I fall!

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

For The Love Of Dogs!

If I didn't love dogs, and love mine especially, there is a certain little badger type one that resides with me that might have had to find a different home after I saw this:
Every single flower bulb I have planted has been dug up. I don't think she has missed a single one. Goodbye crocus, daffodils, tulips, and a host of other ones I don't recall the names of. I was so looking forward to a bit of early spring color coming up.....

I can find them all around the yard, but I don't know if they'll survive. They've been laying out in the very cold all night long.

For the love of Dogs, I sacrifice flower bulbs and whole loaves of bread, socks, shoes and belts to sewing machines. All of that fades into the past when a warm furry body curls up next to me on the couch.

For the love of Dogs, I'll live with a bit of hassle!