Thursday, April 30, 2009

Steppin' Out...

I'm going to a swanky, hip party in the city tonight. I will try to look cool and not so suburban-baseball-soccer momish...but it is getting harder and harder these days to do that. I have a grown up babysitter so I don't have to bug out early. I just hope I don't get too tired and have my yawning give me away.

It should be good people watching and great food...which really, are 2 of the only reasons I bother schlepping my butt downtown these days. The lack of parking, horrid traffic and crowds generally make me cranky. Then I feel old...and that defeats the whole purpose of a new dress and a swanky party, right?

Stay tuned...

Wednesday, April 29, 2009


I love how everytime I mention something it pops up in one of my ad banners below or on the side bar: schooling stuff, OCD ads, McDonald's, Oreos...too funny. Let's try something:


puppy chow

I Can't Believe It's Not Butter



mint leaves and thyme

Let's see what happens now!! .

Stuff I Can't Get Rid of and Why:

As I may have mentioned before I do not like change. Blah, blah, blah...yes, some people LOVE it and clearly I'm a narrow minded, repressed ninny since I don't believe in a lot of change. Whatever...But there are reasons I keep some things around, really!!

1. I might need it...I have a lot of old paperwork and notes and files. But I might need to look something up at some point. Plus, a lot of that stuff is union information from work. What if I need to look up a precedent or something? And as the years go on I am almost the keeper of the history...people keep retiring, or dying or going insane and stuff...

2. Let's Make a Deal syndrome...I am the one at baseball games who has the school buzz book, or a bandaid or a safety pin or a 15 inch length piece of woolen yarn. If I made a habit out of cleaning out my purse I might miss out on some McGyver life-saving moment.

3. Some clothes....You might need it! I mean, I got rid of my black leggings from college about 2 years ago and guess what? LEGGINGS ARE BACK IN! WTF? And I am not kidding, in one of my fashion magazines last week I saw that acid washed jeans are back in. See? If I hadn't have listened to serial closet cleaners I'd be all over the fashion scene to this day!

4. Pictures...I think it is some religious doctrine, right? You can't throw away an image or someone loses their soul? I might not be religious, but I ain't stupid either!

5. Books...I HATE getting rid of books. I sold a bunch on Amazon a couple of years ago, big pain. Now there is this second hand place near me (actually it is called "Second Hand Books" original) where I sold some books. The double bind here being that when I sold mine I bought more...for OUTRAGEOUSLY low prices. Who can pass that up??

6.Bills...This goes back up to #1. I might need to know how much I paid each month for electricity in 1998...really. I don't know why, but I might. Stranger things have happened.

7. Kids' work from school...I'm a teacher, it takes time and effort to plan meaningful activities that teach. And as a parent, when the boys are older and they will barely grunt mono-syllabic answers in my general direction I can look at their cute stories from grade school and remember when they loved me and weren't afraid to say so!!

8. For the future...One day, when I become famous (see former lists) I will need all of this documentation and crap for my biographer to get a good picture of who I am. Because you know, talking about myself is really hard for me to do. ;-)

I know that some of you are shaking your heads and thinking, "Oh, she's making excuses, she's rationalizing her hoarding and obsessive behavior." Well, no I am not! You can think what you want but next time you are on a scavenger hunt and you need a 6 year old water bill and a Polaroid photo of my sister when she was 6 crossing her eyes, you know where to come.So there!

Swine Flu...

So bird flu had me upset enough in the past. I hate birds (perhaps I've mentioned that). And the idea that not only can they swoop down at any given moment and peck my eyes out, but now they could transfer some deadly virus to me or my progeny...well, forget it! All birds are evil!!

But now we have pigs to fear as well? And yes, I know that at this point it is human-human transfer that is the issue, but still...This is stressing me out. Who even knew we had a pandemic alert system (which apparently we are on some level that is scary and higher than normal)?

I'm feeling like I used to right after my first child was born. Parents know this feeling, right? The feeling that, "I have brought this new person into the world and now look at all the things I have to worry about protecting him from!!" The list is endless and terrifying. It is enough to make anyone OCD...or at least a heavy drinker and peruser of new reports and updates late into the night.

Hmmm...let's list all the bizarre things I can't control that could kill me or the kids at any time:

1. SARs

2. Bird flu

3. Swine flu

4. Tornadoes/earthquakes and other natural disasters (although the chance of a tidal wave in Chicago is pretty slim...phew!!)

5. E coli

6. various other horrid diseases, contagious or not

7. And of course, terrorists and car accidents....of course these 2 are not necessarily related but both are on the news all the time.

Why do I watch the news? It just stresses me out...But more importantly, can I still have bacon on my baked potato at lunch today??

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Breaking my baby's heart...(maybe)

So, my younger son tried out for "travel" baseball last night. Gossiply speaking, baseball in my very upper middle class 'burb is QUITE political. We don't play that "game", my husband and I and my wonderful son is an average athlete. But there was no dissuading him from trying out. And I DO admire him for going for it, but will that be enough if he gets his heart broken?

Oy, I don't like this part of parenting. It is hard enough to be the "little brother". (To a brother who plays travel soccer and does it very well.) This younger boy of mine (aka "The Ryder") has a heart of gold and makes me laugh everday. All my most quotable quotes are from this boy! ("Wheelchairs can kill you!"; "Rich kids usually wear glasses."; "Jesus died on the potty.") I can't stop him from perhaps being disappointed on Friday when the teams are named...but I don't have to like it, right?

The bright spot being that a new video game will most likely stop any tears (his, not mine)...and of course if he does make a team I will have 15,000 new things to write about.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

My (Fantasy) Life with Sig Hansen...

So, what is it about Sig Hansen of "The Deadliest Catch" that does it for me? I'm not quite sure. He isn't the most handsome man around and generally I don't even go for blondes. He's pretty smart, and definitely brave and funny. Are those the magic addends in this equation? Let's examine this more closely...

Sig commands the Northwestern with confidence. I love a guy who knows what he is doing. He has to make tough life or death decisions, and he does it while weighing the consequences. That is pretty hot, you know?

He is funny...daring his brother to bite the head off a fish, joking around with the camera guys, not falling for practical jokes. His crew spent hours making a dummy up to fall off the boat and Sig laughed immediately, not falling for it for a second. Now there is a man who knows his boat, his crew and human nature. He's no moron!!

And of course there is the fact that he risks his life to bring the rest of us crab. Who doesn't love that? all fallen Jews who eat shellfish I respect those who go out and wrangle it for us. The opening of the show where Sig is on deck celebrating a full pot is about the most fab shot ever.

I think he is just the kind of guy I'd like to hang out with (I am a married woman you know...and Sig is married too.) But I think we'd get along and he'd like me too.

At least in my little fantasy life, that is how it works out. ;-)

Scenes at Target

There is always something to buy at Target...even when you are just bringing your newly 9 year old son to spend his birthday gift card.

1. Strawberry Milkshake Oreos: I like Double Stuffed and I understand the pastel colored cream filling for we need pink Oreos? Hmmmm...they are pretty.

2. Sweatpant shorts WITH pockets: These are a necessity for summer for a mom at a baseball game. I think I need 2 pairs.

3. Hobo bag: It's blue and only $9.99!!

4. Hello Kitty socks for $1! Ok, I don't have any daughters...but if I did, this is a great deal!!

5. Shit....lost my kid. Hang on...

6. Ok, back...Ecco Domani pinot grigio for $8.99. Now doesn't that just brighten a rainy day?

7. Luna bars: a 6 pack for $6.59. MUCH better deal than Whole Foods, but not as cheap as ordering online. However, my need for immediate gratification is fulfilled. Waiting is for chumps.

8. Twinkie Bites 100 Calorie packs: How bad can they be? I volunteer to try them and let everyone know...stay tuned.

Ok, that's all for now. Let's see what this runs me, lol.

I love Target on a rainy day. Why aren't there more people here??

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

What I Would Do With Superpowers

So, pick a superpower! Quick, what would you do with that power? Which one is best? I have given this some thought...

1. Invisibility: If I were invisible for a day I wouldn't do anything pervvy, that's a waste. And so trite, right? A guy becomes invisible, goes into the LuvABulls locker room...blah, blah, blah! If I were invisible for a day I'd hang out where ever all the SAHMs hang out all day and see what they REALLY think of me. I'm dying to know which ones are really nice and which ones are just nice to my face. ;-) Then, after that I might have to sneak into some meetings at work to see if certain things I think are true really are.

2. Flight: The power of flight would be great! If I had to pick one superpower only, I'd take flight. I am not that fond of heights, but I assume that if I had the power of flight I'd get used to heights and the fear would disappear...hopefully. Oh, and if I could fly I wouldn't worry about falling! So anyhoo, I'd fly all over for a day, just to do it, you know? But if I could fly and get so many things accomplished in one day I think I'd need some sort of flight gear...I mean how would I carry the groceries...and could I fly as fast if I were lugging a huge cart after me? And I'd have to dodge a lot of birds...might be scary. Hmmm...maybe this warrants further thought...

3. Super Strength: This would be GREAT!! I could lift stuff, move stuff, shove stuff and scare people! I'd go to Bally's and go into the testosterone room and bench press like A LOT of weight. That would be funny. Then I'd probably do something practical like pick up my furniture and get all the toys and change out from underneath. Oh, and I'd go to the one scary person I'd love to scare and crush something in her face just to watch her turn white. Something really hard like a a computer monitor or...oh, I know! I'd rip a phone book in half like Jamie Sommers did in the Bionic Woman. That would be AWESOME!!!! Just to scare her and all....hee hee, that'd be funny.

4. Super Elasticity: Cool...I could be all flexible and bendy...Tom might like this one.

5. Bionic Hearing and/or Sight: This would be good in union negotiations meetings. If I knew what they were going to say things could move along more quickly. Also, again this would be helpful at work because if I heard everything the kids said at recess to each other I'd know who was fibbing about name calling and swearing and who was telling the truth!

6. Super Speed: It wold be so great to just be able to speed through certain the grocery store, my work out (would it count??) or schlepping the kids places. Then I'd have extra time to be on Facebook. Super speed would be the ultimate multi-tasking tool.

7. The Ability to Blow Things Up or Set Them on Fire: This is a great conversation stopper, right? I don't like the way I'm being treated by some snotty cashier and BOOM! I blow up her cash register. Tee hee...that would be fun. Oh, and it wold be great for starting the grill at block parties...or a campfire, if I camped (which I don't).

8. Mind Reading: This might be the only power to edge out flight. This would be good...I'd know what everyone was thinking, planning, ulterior motives etc...Although it caused stress for Edward in the Twilight series. I think I could handle it though since he also had the whole blood sucking thing to keep under control, he was preoccupied, you know? I'd know what the kids were thinking, I'd know when people were lying to me, messing with me or plotting evil deeds. It would for sure come in handy in my personal and professional life.

9. The Power to Heal: This is very altruistic. And you know, I'm nothing if not a giver.

10. And in honor of Hurley and Miles on LOST...The Power to Communicate with the Dead: I don't think I'd want this power. The whole, "I see dead people" thing is pretty freaky. And really, this power is a huge burden, having to speak for those who can't? That is stress. It makes Hurley NUTSO, right? So, this is a bad power.

I really think I might be on the fence with mind reading and flight...thoughts anyone? See, if I had both of these powers (Yes, I know, very greedy!) I could read your thoughts on the subject, or on me, and then race over and slap you silly if I didn't like what you were thinking! Because, as I might have mentioned before...this is really all about me.

You could always get a superpower of your own and we could battle it out!!

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Stupid and Bad Sayings

There are plenty of "sayings" that are fun, funny and descriptive. But just because something is a known saying doesn't make it "good" or worthwhile. I like descriptive ones like "picture perfect" or "like a bat out of hell". But some are just DUMB and don't make sense. Let's explore, shall we? Ok!

1. "You can't have your cake and eat it too"...Yes you can. That is the whole point of cake! (for my friend Elizabeth!)

2. "From the horse's mouth"..Horses don't talk, unless they are Anne Hathaway...she has a mouth as big as a horse.

3. "A bird in the hand is worth 2 in the bush"..Who the hell wants a bird??? And who wants 2 of them? They are evil!

4. "Out of the mouths of babes"....Sometimes kids just need to shut up. Saying something precocious isn't always cute.

5. "It's not whether you win or lose, its how you play the game"....Bullshit! If you were any good you'd win ;-). And no, I don't say that to the kids.

6. "It's the thought that counts"...So if your husband forgot to get you a birthday gift until the last second and then got you a pine scented air freshener from the Mobil station you are ok with that because he thought about it a little instead of not at all? I think not!

7. "Most improved player"....Not really a saying, but a "title". It means you sucked at the beginning and now you suck a little less...gee, thanks coach.

8. "There's no place like home"...Well, of course there isn't! Home is home, Whole Foods is Whole Foods, AT Loft is AT Loft and Di Pescara is Di Pescara. If lots of places were like home people would be confused all the time and not know which closet to keep their good shoes in.

9. "There are no dumb questions"...Yes, there are. "Does this smell spoiled to you?" is a dumb question. In my house, "Who threw up and didn't flush?" is a dumb question (because the answer is always The Ryder).

10. "There is always a light at the end of the tunnel"...Not necessarily. What if it's night? What if there's a power failure? What if you are so scared of tunnels you keep your eyes closed??

11. "When a door closes, a window opens"...Huh? That would lead to sky high heating costs, especially this winter. And guess what? Sometimes crap just I don't appreciate people who keep trying to look on the bright side when I'm trying to be depressed or pissed off.

12. "Let sleeping dogs lie"...What if they are in the way? What if they have horrible gas and you want to shove their smelly, canine booty outside? Now, "Never wake a sleeping baby"--THAT one I believe (but mostly because one of my kids didn't ever sleep until he was 16 months old, have I mentioned that before??)

So...agree, disagree? What am I missing? Feel free to chime in...or to defend one of the above submissions. I will keep an open mind, for now. ;-)

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Stuff That is Great About Being an Adult...

Ok, here is the follow up to my last note...the other side of the coin!One of my children aspires to be an adult, and if you know my kids you know for sure which one it is. He always wants to know, "What's it like to be a grown up and be able to......?". I tell him to relax and enjoy being a kid. Adults have the luxury of, well, of being adults who can look back on childhood with fondness for the most part. From where they sit, kids must think things seem pretty rosy for us, you know? Here are all the things I can think of that make the WORK worthwhile:

1.Staying up as late as you want...So, this is one of those things that is great when you are in college and soon after. You know, when you have fewer REAL responsibilities. I love staying up late. But having to get up at the crack of dawn and drag short people out of their beds sucks, and it sucks more when you can't open your eyes. Then, the cruel irony of this is once your kids get old enough to be responsible for themselves in the mornings (I'm still semi-waiting for this!) YOU are too old to stay up late. Where is the fairness in this? But, the point being, you CAN do it if you want to ;-)

2. Eating ice cream for dinner...Now, I can't honestly find anything bad about this. I have done it before and I'll do it again. Of course there is that pesky issue of weight gain to consider....

3. Swearing and not getting in trouble...And by trouble I mean that you can't get technically grounded. Of course one can't run around swearing at work all the time (or, in my case, ever) but no one is going to wash my mouth out with soap (and yes, that did happen to me as a kid, phhhhhlaaat! gross!) for dropping an f-bomb here or there when I am feeling especially colorful. Oh, I did swear in front of my kid's friend this weekend...I called his mom and fessed up. She didn't seem too mad...

4. Buying something you don't "need"...We are not exactly "well off" but we get by. While I don't have money for huge extras sometimes I do make time for me (especially if there is a sale at AT Loft). That is the perk I get for working my butt off everyday so we can live here, right? I make my kids repeat the mantra, "We have everything we need and some of the things we want." And I do believe that, but heck, Mommy gets pretty clothes every now and then, right?

5. Getting to be right, even if you aren't...and yes, I know that this blurs with just "being the parent". But any adult can pull the, "I'm right, so there" card. Only occasionally will this get you beat up...and even less occasionally if you are a woman.

6. Driving...I love driving. It is fun and it reeks of freedom. I especially love being in the car in the summer, windows down, sunroof open, and cheesy metal playing really loudly. That is fun. Although when I get to a stoplight in town I do kind of turn down the music. I don't wanna scar any Deerfield kids by seeing Ms. K banging her head to "Pour Some Sugar On Me" at the intersection...

7. According to AJ Schmitz, the best thing about being an adult is bossing your kids around. You can make them do whatever you want. As I tell them all the time, "What's the use of kids if they can't work for you?" I love it when they want to do something or go somewhere and I can say stuff like, "Well, ok...but bring in the garbage cans, get the mail and straighten up the basement first." The best!

8. Wine...'nuff said. And it doesn't even have to be expensive...especially after the first 2 glasses.

9. Voting...Even when my candidate doesn't win I love voting. It makes you FEEL grown up, doesn't it? Although voting in my county is kinda boring. You just fill in the bubble with a marker, a scantron test! In college when I voted in Wisconsin they had actual "pull the curtain and yank down the lever" voting booths. It was so cool!!

10. This goes along with #7...Changing the rules whenever you feel like it. I can say stuff like, "No pop with dinner" and then change my mind when I want to, or when it suits me. I can do this at home and at school ;-).

Ok, what else? What is your favorite thing about being a grown-up?