Saturday, April 30, 2011

Z is for Zoo

OK, I'm stretching things a bit.. I'm not really going to blog about the zoo - not that there's anything wrong with that. Nope, today I'm going to tell you the story of how BaZooka Joe let me down. Thanks to @LakeLopez.

When I was about 7 or 8 I knew that as soon as my father got home, I was in for a spanking. I have no recollection of what my offense was. I didn't get spanked too often that I can recall. Typically the fear of getting a spanking was more than enough.

So this one time, thanks to a Bazooka Joe cartoon on a gum wrapper (remember those?), I got the brilliant idea to put a hard cover Nancy Drew book down my pants to serve as a barrier between my bottom and my father's hand.

Bad idea.

Sure, it might work in the cartoons, but in real life your father feels the distinctly book-like shape with the first smack, pulls the book out and proceeds to spank you with the book.

It's the only spanking I remember from my childhood. Not that it was memorably painful, at least not to my bottom. No, it was one of those "best laid plans" tales gone awry. I'm sure it just thrills my father that it's now one of my favorite childhood stories. LOL

And that, my friends, brings us to the end of the A-Z Blogging Challenge. I'm pretty proud that I hit every single letter, on time. Sure, my topics were all over the place, but it has been a lot of fun. Plus, I've made several new friends and found a bunch of new blogs to follow!

Next up, the May Mother's Blog Hop. If you're interesting in joining in please contact @ChristineMarie on Twitter or let me know and I'll get you the info :)

Life as an Easter Egg

It's not easy being an Easter Egg. Sure, you're given a nice hot bath, dressed up all pretty and admired for a day or two... but in the end you're just tomorrow's egg salad sammich...

Friday, April 29, 2011

Y is for YouTube

YouTube is like the show and tell of the 21st century, at least so far. At last we can share videos like an exploding couch and this week's favorite... the Honey Badger video.

Now, when things get bad, I just channel my inner Honey Badger. I shall not care... I shall not give a sh*t. :)

Thursday, April 28, 2011

X is for Xanadu

One of my all time favorite movies... Xanadu. Roller skating, Olivia Newton-John and fantastic music - what's not to like?

One of my very favorite things about Xanadu, however, has always been this song - You Made Me Love You. I have loved this song since the first time I heard it. It has only ever been released on 45 (for you kids, that's a small record - GET OFF MY LAWN! LOL) as a B-side to Suddenly. It has never been re-released, which is a crying shame. Yes, I still have a 45 of it :)

I actually sang this song once in front of a rather large audience.


Wednesday, April 27, 2011

W is for Wendy

Fourteen random things about me...

1. I was born in Germany.

2. For a very long time, since I was about 7, I wanted to be a lawyer. And further, a Justice on the Supreme Court.
3. Also when I was about 7 I got grounded. My dad bought me a Nancy Drew book to read, since I wasn't allowed to do much of anything else. I was instantly hooked. I still have every one of those books. Sadly, I don't think Angie will be very interested in them - too old fashioned. ("what do you mean they didn't have cell phones??")
4. When I was young I'd fill shot glasses with apple cider vinegar and sip it.
5. I got lost in the desert for 9 hours when I was 10. I distinctly recall being upset that I was missing "a very special episode of The Love Boat". Back when there weren't repeats, VCRs or DVRs.
6. I carried a teddy bear to school with me when I was a Freshman in high school.
Me at 16
7. I learned to drive in a '65 Buick Riviera.
8. My first car was a '65 Mustang.
9. I lived in New Orleans for 11 years. I had a very good time in my late 20s and early 30s.
I was sometimes a little devil in New Orleans.
10. I had lasik surgery in 2000. Before that I was almost legally blind.
11. I'm actually very shy. I am the most outgoing shy person you'll ever meet.
12. I've been writing fiction since I was in high school - maybe earlier.
13. My life is much less exciting than it used to be. I used to see 4 a.m. from the "partying late" side, never the "up for work" side.
14. Sometimes I miss the old me... but I am so incredibly blessed, I wouldn't change a thing. :)

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

V is for Virtual

I have been a geek pretty much all of my life. I adopted the idea of an online culture long ago. First with Bulletin Board Systems (BBSs) which are primitive in comparison to anything you might find on the internet today. Then on to AOL chat rooms, where I fell in with a creative group of role players and writers. Later on forum boards and gaming communities for games like Team Fortress Classic (TFC) and World of Warcraft (WOW). Today I'm growing more immersed into Twitter every day. 

In "real life" I'm pretty shy, but online I feel like my true personality comes out. Maybe this is because I can give a little more thought to what I say, or maybe because Twitter is much like talking to yourself on a global level.

Some of my TFC Friends - Girl Power Forever :)

This gets me thinking about my virtual friends... people I will likely never meet in person, but like to hang out with online. People I share details of my life with, offer advice to, turn to for guidance, "adopt" in an effort to help them out... the list goes on. It's hard to explain the strength of online friendships to someone who has never experienced it... it sounds kind of crazy to call people you've never "met" friends. But I do. I have some fantastic "virtual" friends, some of whom I have known for 10 years or more. 

So this is a tribute to you, my virtual friends. You have all touched my life in some way and I am thankful for each of you. There have been times when you have helped me more than you know. Know too that I'm here for you should you need me. Virtual or not, a friend is a friend. 

Monday, April 25, 2011


Warning: This post contains graphic images of unimaginable monster egg horror...

Why am I on this plate with a BLT?

Why is that lady looking at me like that?

As you can see, they cracked under the pressure...

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Happy Easter!

Our Easter Eggs. The ones in the back row look scared, maybe they'd heard about my plans for egg salad sammiches. Hehehe... :)

Happy Easter!

Saturday, April 23, 2011

T is for Tattoo

I've been planning this tattoo for 2 or more years now. It's actually a modern tradition for breast cancer survivors to get a tattoo of some sort. I settled on an ankle bracelet with four charms. I'm very pleased with how it turned out. My goal was to have it appear to be an actual ankle bracelet from afar, I think Chris from Riddle of Steel in Peoria did a great job!

There's a Crown for Angie, my Little Princess, and the Breast Cancer ribbon at the back.

There's a Harp for my BFF Stephanie.

And a Heart for my Wonderful Husband Lenny.

This is the next tattoo I'd like to get, but I'm not sure where to put it yet.

Friday, April 22, 2011

S is for Sadr

Robbie Chen arrived at Jackie's house around 7 p.m. They'd arranged to get together that evening for dinner to discuss their case load in a more leisurely place than the precinct. Ever since the dummied video that had almost landed them in jail and had put them on the lamb from their own police department, Jackie had been uncomfortable at the office. She'd even mentioned, on occasion, that maybe she should think about looking for another job. He could see her point, but was trying to talk her out of it.
After knocking several times with no response, Chen tried the front door of Jackie's apartment to find it unlocked.
"Jackie?" he called out, stepping through the threshold. His calls went unanswered, the apartment dead silent.
Pulling his gun, Chen made his way into the living room. It appeared that someone was home. The TV was on, but the volume had been muted. Next he checked the bedroom. No sign of her there, but the bathroom door was open and the light was on.
Cautiously he made his way across the room and poked his head in the door. There she sat on the rim of the tub, staring fixatedly at what appeared to be a stick.

Chen holstered his weapon. "Jackie?"
She made no response, just kept staring at that stick. He noticed she was pale and her breathing was irregular. He waved his hand in front of her nose, but still she did not stir. He then tried to get a better look at the object of her focus, but she was holding it in a death grip.

"Jackie!" Nothing.
He glanced around the room, looking for some clue, when his eyes lit upon an empty package in the wastebasket. Stooping to pick it up, he turned it over to read the label. "EPT Fast Response Pregnancy Test". Chen froze a chill starting at his head rushed down to his feet.

Quickly he turned the box over. "Blue ‑ Positive, Pink ‑ Negative" it read.
Chen walked slowly over to Jackie's side and sat down on the rim of the tub beside of her. A quick glance told him what he already knew.

"Oh.... my.... God...." was all he could say, staring at the stick now himself.

He turned to look at her. "Sadr...?"
Finally, a response; she nodded, biting her lip.
As Chen gathered her up in his arms he was already making plans for a trip to the future. "I'm going to kick his ass" he mumbled to himself.
I turned to him suddenly, pushing him away and shoving the tester towards him. “It looks blue to me, does it look blue to you?” I started off half-hysterically, “because it looks blue to me and it simply can’t be blue. Maybe it’s just broken.” I finished, lamely.

“Well, maybe you should take another one?” Chen suggested, hesitantly.

“This is the second one; the first one was awfully blue too...” I replied, my voice trailing off.


I grabbed him by his shoulders, stick still clenched in my fist, and shook him. “But I can’t be pregnant! I mean, My God! The father hasn’t even been born yet! This is just too ridiculous, how did this happen?!”

Chen sputtered, his lips moving, but no comprehensive words exiting them.

“Well, of course I know how it happened, but how could this have happened?!” I snapped, answering my own stupid question.

“Oh!” I exclaimed, the enormity of it hitting me all at once.

The tears started slowly, but then fell rapidly down my pale cheeks. “What am I going to do? How am I going to tell him? Shit, how am I going to tell him?! He’s sixty years in the future, for God’s sake!”

“Definitely a 10 on the weird scale,” Robbie replied, trying to coax a smile from me.

I sighed, slumping forward to put my head in my hands. “Definately,” I mumbled. 

Thursday, April 21, 2011

R is for Repeat

After three attempts to write something new, I'm going to repeat an older blog that most of you probably never scrolled back far enough to see, since it's over two years old now. It was actually part of a paper I wrote for a class on Communication. I have always liked how I depicted the voices in my head and the white noise of panic.

Me 37 weeks pregnant - June 2007

I met Dr. Sandra Gladding on June 5th, 2007. Her assistant, Angela, came into the exam room before she did and had got me talking about myself and my background. Dr. Gladding came in and sat down, smiling and told me to continue on with my story. I’d reached the part about how my mother had been diagnosed with breast cancer at thirty-two, and she asked me some questions about that. Next she casually asked me if I was married, how long I’d been living in the area, about family and friends; typical “getting to know you” types of questions. All the while she was smiling and calm, rather like a horse trainer around a skittish colt.

Both ladies were open and friendly, and we talked for several minutes before I started to get nervous. There was nothing specific that caused the hairs on my body to slowly start standing to attention, one by one, but a quiet voice in the back on my head reminded me that I was there for a biopsy, not tea. Perhaps noticing my increasing nervousness, Dr. Gladding stood up, put her arm around me and squeezed my shoulder. “You’re going to be fine; it sounds like you have a good support network.”

My mind struggled to interpret her words.

The first of my inner voices to speak up was Denial. ‘She must be talking about the baby. A good support network for the baby."

Fear chimed in, ‘Support network? Why do I need a support network?’ 

Suddenly my emotions were all talking at once, blanketing me in the white noise of a noisy theater. 

Panic raised its voice above the din, ‘Oh my God, do I have cancer?’ 

‘Why else would she say that?’ sneered the Realist, “you’ve been waiting for this for ten years now, don’t act surprised.’ 

‘What about the baby? If I have cancer, would she have it too?’ cried the mother in me. My hands went automatically to my bulging stomach, cradling my daughter who was due to be born in approximately four weeks. With Herculean effort I shushed the voices in my head.

“So it’s cancer?” I asked, my voice surprisingly steady.

“We’re going to do a biopsy today to be sure, but the mammogram and ultrasound you had yesterday indicate that yes, it’s very likely cancer.”

The white noise got loud again and I struggled to hear her, to make sense of what she was telling me. I had interpreted her behavior correctly; she had been preparing me for the worst.

“Wendy, you need to be prepared to have this baby this week,” she told me, noticing my hands clutching my very pregnant belly.

Bile rose in my throat and I broke out in a cold sweat. “But I’m only 36 weeks along,” I argued ineffectively.

“We’re not going to let anything happen to you and… what did you say you were going to name your daughter again?” she asked, pulling me back from the chaos in my mind.

“Angelina,” I answered numbly. Just saying her name calmed me though, as I’m sure Dr. Gladding anticipated.

She squeezed my shoulder again. “Angelina is going to be just fine, and so is her mommy,” she reassured.

Thus began one of the biggest learning experiences in my life. I could go on and on about the lessons breast cancer taught me, but for now let’s focus on perception.

While this is an extreme case of perception checking, sometimes the extremes can better illustrate the point. Honing perception skills is invaluable and will help in the worst of circumstances. Even before I asked the question, my mind and body were already picking up the undertones and preparing me mentally and physically to deal with the answer.

Of particular note is the white noise that fills your mind when something dramatic happens. It can completely drown out voices outside of your own head, and is why you sometimes don’t recall what someone said to you at the time. 

However, it’s not always bad. The white noise can drown out all but the calm voice of reason necessary in a time of crisis, which gives one the ability to deal with the matter at hand and leave the emotions to be dealt with later. I would assume that’s how nurses and EMTs make it though their days.

I’ve learned to not drown in the white noise, or the distractions that surround me daily, but to use the noise to drown out the rest of the world so I can focus on what’s important. 

That’s one thing cancer teaches you - what’s important.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Q is for Quest

Surely you've read at least one book that involved an epic quest. There were probably cryptic prophesies, perhaps some sorcerers and magic thrown in for flavor. A coming of age or fate driven book leading up to one paramount choice or act that determines the fate of the main character, or perhaps the entire universe.

No pressure, right?

David Eddings' Belgarad Characters found here

Did you ever wonder if perhaps you are on a quest, but no one told you? No one gave you an old scroll that gave you riddled instructions. Magic is pretty scarce. You might get occasional glimpses of some greater purpose or theme or path forward, but overall you're basically feeling your way towards some unknown goal without much guidance about what's expected of you.

Perhaps sometimes you find yourself waiting for... something. You're not sure what, but somehow you're certain that it's right around the corner. You just have to be patient. Unless you do that one thing that changes your course and takes you in a different direction. If only you'd been more patient, you might think, looking back.

But no, what happened happened for a reason, you just don't understand it yet. You will someday though. You'll look back and think two things... "Oh, now I get it" and "Geez, was I really upset over that?" The whole "will this {insert horrible current circumstance/event/thing} matter in five years?" concept. To which I typically think "no... but it sure the hell pisses me off right now!"

Anyways, where was I? Oh, right, do you ever think you're on some mysterious quest where the fate of the world rests upon your shoulders and you have to choose the right path or the whole world will just go up in flames?

Yeah, me neither...

Monday, April 18, 2011

O is for Oh Yeah!

We went shooting yesterday and had a great time. The best part of the day though, was the couch. It wasn't our couch. Someone had dumped it off in the desert. Poor couch.
Meet Lovey, the Doomed Couch

As you can see, she already had battle wounds

Do you see that little thing under the couch? That's a 2 1/2 lb. exploding target. 

Oh My... direct hit. 

BOOM! Poor Lovey.

She didn't stand a chance.

But she won't be forgotten. 

When the dust and smoke cleared, she was all but gone.

Poor Lovey.

She's come undone.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

N is for Nookie (includes video!)

Angie found this song on YouTube awhile back. For awhile it was her very favorite song.

We keep trying to break her of her Binky (or nuki), but so far have had no luck. Any advice is welcome!

What were you thinking? O.o

Friday, April 15, 2011

M is for Mom

Warning: This won't be one of my lighthearted blogs.

Mom - July 2007
On Christmas 2007 my mother had a massive stroke. As soon as I could, I flew up to see her. The doctors said she would likely not survive. 

I wish she hadn't, as awful and as cruel as that sounds.

My mother and I have had our ups and downs over the years; mostly downs really. For decades she had me tiptoeing around her in an attempt to avoid hurting her feelings over a wide variety of things. Unfortunately we really just didn't get along. It happens. I've had to get over it.

Yet, despite our rocky relationship, I never, ever would have wished her current existence upon her. The stroke robbed her of the ability to speak. She cannot move the right side of her body. All of her possessions were given away or sold off. Virtually everything she had is now gone. She will be in a nursing home for the rest of her life.

She'll be 60 in June. Far too young to be faced with that.

The only saving grace is that she doesn't seem to suffer anymore from the wide variety of ailments that plagued her over the past few decades. I'm not even certain how much she remembers or knows.

I haven't seen her since right after the stroke. When the doctors tried to explain to me why they had ignored her various Do Not Resuscitate orders. When they told me I should decide if I wanted them to remove her feeding tube and wait to see if she'd starve to death.

My aunts try to make me feel guilty that I've not been home to see her; I do. I'm sorry, but I just don't want to see her like that. I'm selfish, I know, but I just don't.

See, I know that my mom isn't in the body that's in that nursing home back in Pennsylvania, because if she were in there she'd be clawing, screaming, doing anything to escape... this would have been her worst nightmare.

The woman who was my mother is gone, and I thank God for that.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

L is for Love

Love is... having a partner who lets you know that he loves you every single day.
Lenny & I - picture taken by Angie

Love is... having a daughter who tells you she missed you when you pick her up from school and who loves to give you hugs and kisses. 

Love is... being comfortable with who you are.

Love is... a friendship that endures for years, even when you're far apart.

Love is... having an aunt that has always doubled for me, and now for Angie, as a Fairy Godmother.
Love is... having my parents living next door and helping us raise Angie.
Lenny, me, Grandma, Dad, Angie, Joann & Matt - Sept 2007

Love is... for the good memories I have of my mother, and the heartbreak I feel when I think of her now.
Mom & I circa 1995

Love is... Mom and Dennis, Melissa, Christopher, Madison and Hailey, even though they're far away in Massachusetts, they are still close in our hearts.  

Love is... having good friends who come out to spend Saturdays with us.

I was going to write tonight about Luck. I thought I'd changed my mind, but realize now oh how lucky I am to be loved.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

My Theory on Snot

Every time I have a cold I recall my Theory on Snot (Patent Pending). I've actually proposed this theory to my doctors, and they all look at me like I'm crazy. They may be right, but hear me out...

You know how you tend to lose weight when you're sick? OK, hold that thought.

And WHERE does all that snot come from anyways? I mean really. You have a really bad cold, you haven't been able to hardly eat or drink in days and your nose continues to run C O N S T A N T L Y. Boxes of tissue are used. You blow your nose every two minutes. Your bedroom floor is covered in tissues and still your nose continues to run.

OK, so this is where my theory comes in. What if snot is actually fat cells? It makes sense. You lose weight when your sick and there's really no where else for the snot to come from or anything else it could possibly be, right?

Or perhaps it's just my way of making myself feel better when I've blown my nose for the gazillionth time. But next time you have a cold think of all the extra weight you're getting rid of each time you blow your nose and tell me that it doesn't make you feel just a little bit better.

K is for Kleenex Karma

I am all for cost savings and going green, but I draw the line at tissues - and you should too.

See? My nose came clean off...
This week I've been battling a cold and my nose has been running non-stop. Lots of sneezing, flem and snot... you get the picture. Grossness all around.

In fact, I would have called in sick for work yesterday, but I figured I'd get more rest driving two hours and working all day than I would at home alone with a 3 1/2 year old.

Office services at work has been trying to save money and go green. I'm all for it, except that this included buying 100% recycled "green" tissues. Not only does the term "100% recycled" not sound at all healthy or sanitary next to "tissues", but 100% recycled tissues are (as you may have guessed) about as soft as fine grit sand paper.

Yesterday my red nose and I marched downstairs to kindly suggest that cost savings and going green should not extend to tissues. Chris, the normally very nice boy in Office Services, was not as sympathetic as I might have hoped. Instead he went on and on about saving money and attempting to go green. Blah blah blah.

So, I did what any self-respecting, sore-nosed, snotty, feverish, grumpy person might do, I cursed Chris with a cold. "Mark my words," I said between sniffles, "you will have a cold by the end of April!" Oh yes, my friends, Karma is real.

Then I grabbed his box of Kleenex and fled.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

J is for June

June is an important month in my life.

My darling husband's birthday is in June. This year he'll be 39. He's the best husband in the whole world and spoils me every day.

My daughter's birthday is also in June. I spent 56 hours in labor with her, so I have told my boss and my husband that I will never work on June 23rd again. Instead Angie and I have Mommy/Daughter days and go to the movies, out for ice cream, eat at McDonald's and generally pal around all day.

My mother's birthday is in June as well. She'll be 60 this year. I should probably do something special for her, but honestly I have no idea what that might be.

June is also the month I was diagnosed with breast cancer, four years ago. Next year I hit that magical 5 year mark. In most cases, if the cancer is going to come back it comes back within the first five years. Yesterday I was given the "all clear" on my annual MRI and PET scans - very good news!

Maybe next year we'll throw a 40th Birthday/5-year survivor/The Big Oh-5 Party for the three of us!

Monday, April 11, 2011

I is for iPod

The best purchase I have ever made was my iPod Touch. I LOVE it.

Finally my extensive music collection is in one place and completely portable. No longer am I limited to a handful of CDs in my car.

My two hours of driving every day are filled now with audio books I purchase from

In a pinch, the iPod will entertain Angie if we're waiting for a table in a restaurant or at the doctor's office.

I can watch movies on it or play Words with Friends. Thanks to Book Crawler and DVD Profiler I now have an inventory of my personal book and DVD libraries (no more buying multiple copies of books because the publisher changed the cover or movies in the bargain bin I already own!). Bonus, both of these programs utilize a bar code scanner (it uses the iPod's camera (note: older generations don't have a camera)) to speed up entry!

Lose it helps me track what I eat and what exercise I don't do to help me lose or maintain weight.

The list goes on and on. It really is the best thing I have ever purchased. So if you don't have one, I highly recommend you get one! :)

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Bonus Entry: H is for Hat

H is for (Un)Healthy Potato Salad

Today we are having a small get-together at the house. As is our tradition, I have made potato salad for the occasion. It's not the healthiest dish you'll ever make - that's probably why it's so yummy!
Everything but the Kitchen Sink Potato Salad
8-10 potatoes, cubed and boiled with Tony Chachere's Original Creole Seasoning
One sweet white onion - cut up
1/2 lb bacon - cut up into small pieces and cooked
4 eggs - boiled and cut up into small pieces
3 stalks celery - cut up
2 dill pickles - cut up
1 1/2 cups (give or take) of mayonnaise
Yellow mustard to taste
Tony Chachere's Original Creole Seasoning
Garlic Salt

Cook the potatoes, cool them so they're not hot and mix everything together. Refrigerate. Serve with hamburgers and chips.

Warning - the creole seasoning is pretty spicy, so unlike the potato salads you're used to, this one packs a small punch. Because you cook the potatoes with it in the water, the potatoes are nicely flavored as well.

Friday, April 8, 2011

G is for Goober

This is our dog Goober. His real name is Guinness, but we dubbed him Goober early on. He's a good, faithful dog who we love, even when he's grumpy - which is most of the time.
He just celebrated his 12th birthday. Happy Birthday Goober!

And this is Ginger, our Chocolate Lab. She'll be 3 in June. I had thought that labs were smart dogs, but alas I was mistaken. She's very loyal to food, sweet and we love her lots.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

F is for Forty

If you've been paying any attention at all, you know that I just turned forty.

Or, as I have put it several times, "the big four OHHHhhhhh!" :)

For the past several months I've been asking my over-40 friends if 40 is indeed the new 30. They all said yes. Those under 40, however, looked skeptical.

I can tell you that 40 seems like an appropriate age to have a midlife crisis of some sort.

One of my friends bought a $50,000 Acura. He told me at the time that he'd told his wife that he was either going to get a car or a girlfriend. I suggested that the car would be cheaper in the long run. He later told me that buying the car completely took his mind off of turning 40 because he was in a panic over how he was going to make the payments.

The guy in the cubicle next to me at work quit his job as an Estimator to pursue his dream of becoming a chef.

Me? Well I've been working up to 40 for the past year or so. I lost a bunch of weight and finished college. I'm getting another tattoo in a few weeks. I didn't buy a fancy car, but I did buy my cube in December. I have no desire to be a chef, but if Jim Henson Studios happens to call and offer me a job as a Muppetier I am outta here.

Yes, I would love to be a Muppetier. I'd also love to be an FBI Profiler. Oddly, I think I'd be really good at both of them (perhaps even at the same time! LOL)

Other dream jobs include being an author (Bestseller, of course) or an Editor. Working for a gaming company or designing toys. Working in a think tank designing better ways to do things - research and development - or working at a bookstore. Or maybe a Dream Manager helping people determine what they want to do with their lives, and helping them to do it.

Gosh, I'm 40 now, I guess it's time I figured out what I want to be when I grow up! Oh, and I'd like a black on black Camero!

How does the picture tie in? We went shooting on my birthday. :)

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

E is for Ecstatic and Ew

I have been trying to find the perfect "E" word all day. Most of the suggestions I've received are far too expressive or energetic for my energy levels today. Others were eccentric, egotistical or euphoric. After starting E is for Ew, E is for Expressions, E is for Exhausted and E is for Words that Contain E, but don't start with E, I decided to combine them into one Extravaganza - or, you know, entry.

After three and a half years, I am ecstatic that Angie has finally decided to potty train. We'd almost given up hope and had determined that the silver lining to investing in Pull-Ups and (later) Depends for the rest of our lives would pay off when she got to high school and the boys wouldn't date her. I mean, no one wants to date the girl who wets herself, picks her nose, farts a lot and eats dog food, right? After careful deliberation, Lenny and I determined that we were ok with that.

But, in one last attempt, I bribed her. Yes, I had to bribe her - and it worked! Sort of... I bought several small presents - Pez dispensers, plastic jewelry, crayons, coloring books, stick on tattoos, etc. Pink presents were for successfully peeing on the potty. Purple presents for pooping on the potty. It has been about a month now. All of the pink presents are long gone, but we still have several of the purple ones...

Which brings us to Ew... I always have to laugh when people who don't have children (but are about to) tell me how squeamish they are. Parenthood is not for sissies, and if you are a sissy or squeamish - well, you won't be for too long after they're born. Between diaper changes, snotty noses and instinctively cupping your hands to catch projectile vomit at 2 a.m., it doesn't take long.

Anyways, back to Ew, Angie still isn't comfortable pooping on the potty. I have no idea why. I make up pooping songs. I assure her that not only does everyone poop, but that it's fun. I have begged, cajoled, wheedled, offered special Dora popcicles and bribed her, all to no avail. We've had celebrations when she's successfully pooped on the potty, yet she will sneak off to poop in her pants in her closet if given the chance. I don't get it, but... well... Ew.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

D is for Down

It has just been a downer of a day.

Stephanie flew home this morning, which left Angie and I both in tears.

Later I found out that a friend of mine lost the baby she was carrying - she was 8 weeks along. I tried to offer some support and encouraging words, but I remember all too well that there's really nothing anyone can say.

Later on I bit the head off a co-worker/friend that needed my help. I wasn't angry with him. I was irritated by the situation and lashed out. I apologized later, but I feel like a jerk for having lost my cool.

Angie's still not feeling well, so she was alternatively sad and clingy, with a few dashes of whiny.

I hate it when I feel down in the dumps, because I know that I have so much to be thankful for. As proof of that I got a letter from the radiologist I saw last week telling me that my MRI results are normal. It's not every day that being normal is a positive all the way around :)

Tomorrow I promise to be funny again. Today, you'll just have to forgive me for just being funny looking ;)

Monday, April 4, 2011

C is for City (as in Sex in the)

My best friend Stephanie came in for my 40th birthday. Sadly we don't live in the same state anymore, which sucks only about 99% of the time.

Anyways, no visit would be complete without a little Sex and the City. Last night we watched the first SATC movie and tonight we're watching the second. Sadly we weren't able to watch them in the theaters together, so we're making up for that now.

Those four ladies - Carrie, Charlotte, Miranda and Samantha - are like long lost friends for us. We've laughed with them. We've cried with them. We have talked about them like they're real people.

We were joking last night that we've already got a Carrie (her) and a Miranda (me), so all we need is a Charlotte and a Samantha to complete the quartet. And while we've been fortunate enough not to deal with all of the crazy situations that those ladies have, we've seen our fair share of drama over the past fourteen and a half years. And much like the ladies of SATC we've handled everything life's had to throw at us together. It breaks my heart that she lives so far away, so I guess part of me tries to cram as much girl bonding as I can into the short time we're together these days.

I take her to the airport in the morning, unless tomorrow I skip to K is for Kidnapping. :)

Saturday, April 2, 2011

B is for Birthday!

If you've talked to me lately you probably know that my birthday is tomorrow (April 3rd). And further that I'll be 40. FORTY! Oh my...

On the one hand, I suppose it's an accomplishment to have survived for forty years. As a mother, I can tell you that children seem bent on risking their lives whenever given the opportunity. Not to mention that their reckless behavior often feels like they're shortening your own... O.o

Well, 30 was a great year, so hopefully 40 will be even better. My best friend flew in to help me celebrate and my darling husband took us to dinner at one of my favorite restaurants - Sushi Kee. An hour plus drive, but worth it. We also visited the tattoo parlor and planned my new tattoo out. So the day leading up to my birthday has been really good.

We also stopped at the mall. My best friend pointed out some store and said "I can't shop there anymore."

"Why," I asked.

"Because I'm 43."

"Oh, do you have to be under 40 to shop there?"

"So it would seem..."

"Hey, I can still shop there today!"

So things may be sagging, my "hotness" may only be coming in flashes and I may be using "age defying" makeup, but at least I still have my sense of humor :)