Posts filed under 'Nuttin’'
EFFING JANUARY, AM I RIGHT? I don’t know about you guys, but for the first few weeks after the holidays, I am relieved they’re over and I’m relaxed! Ho de ho, the winter is upon us, but there are no more holidays and we can just relax into our comfy routine!
And then, God, it’s just dark and dreary and cold and everyone is sick, so you don’t see friends as much as you usually do, and did I mention it’s DARK and it’s never SUNNY and you get the stomach virus, and then your friends get the stomach virus and then everyone has the FLU and it’s just depressing. I have been in a low-grade foul mood going on a week now, with absolutely no reasoning behind it, and then I remember: January. That’s really all I need to know.
January, man. It is a dark time. And February is more of the same. But March! Hey, uh, that’s coming soonish, and things start to warm up a bit and bonus! It stays light past 5 p.m. then.
Something to look forward to! Mud season!
Barrel of glee, I am.
Let us move on to some quick takes, because at this point, I am just putting things down on paper to get them out, just to, I don’t know, KEEP SWIMMING in this bleak, bleak era of deep winter. (Irony: I LIKE winter. But the lack of snow and/or sunshine is SAPPING MY WILL TO LIIIIIVE.)
— I’ve been cloth diapering and this is not new if you follow me on Twitter, because I went through a phase where I talked about it all the time, and I became one of Them, and here’s the thing: Cloth diapering is fun. No, I don’t know why. Yes, it’s creepy. Yes, the acronyms are awful and stupid and make it seem like some kind of SCIENCE, when really, it isn’t, it’s quite simple. I feel silly, in fact, that I didn’t do it with Sam, but then again, YOU try figuring out how to squeeze extra laundry into a time when your child screams 24/7 and eating anything less convenient than a Pop Tart is just too much to ask. Occasionally, I think back on the state of our house during Sam’s infancy, and honestly, it was as close to true squalor as I have ever lived. I don’t think I cleaned ANYTHING for a solid six months, and while Adam is a neat picker-upper, he’s not really going to dig in there with a toilet brush or anything.
Jesus, talk about a dark time.
I digress! So I’m cloth diapering, and it started like this: Allie blew out every diaper under the sun except for Seventh Generation, which for some reason is the ONLY disposable diaper I could readily find with elastic on the back. This is stupid, right? Stupid. Anyway, those diapers are not only expensive, but horribly crinkly and uncomfortable, and on a whim, I bought some gDiapers with the cloth inserts. I liked them, actually, and suddenly, I was no longer cutting onesies off of my kid on a regular basis (seriously, with the cutting). But oh ho HO, I could not get them clean with Charlie’s Soap and my inserts smelled like poop and I just GAVE UP and ordered a bunch of prefold diapers from Green Mountain Diapers and threw them into Flip covers, voila.
THEN, Kelly told me that basically, it turned out the reason my diapers still stunk is that THEY WERE NOT CLEAN because Charlie’s was not cleaning them, and HEAVENS, we bought some powdered Tide and God shone on us, and I could use microfiber again, so I got some bumGenius 4.0 pocket diapers and a couple of Elementals and now, that is what we use. Flips + prefolds, BG pocket diapers and for nighttime, bumGenius Elementals, which are awesome. I only have five Elementals, honestly, and that’s plenty.
So! Pocket diapers, prefolds + covers and an organic all-in-one, all from bumGenius, save for the prefolds. That’s it. I have two dozen prefolds, eight Flip covers, and maybe 12 pocket dipes? Anyway, I do laundry every three days, I spent less than $400 on the whole shebang thanks to seconds and used diapers and done. It’s way easier than I thought it would be, even with Alex eating solids. And cheap! Less than $400!
We won’t talk about the water bill from the month I tried to make my gDiapers stink less using Charlie’s. Yes, that was . . . expensive. But atypical! ATYPICAL!
Now you know. You should do it! It’s easy! And did I mention cheap?
— Speaking of cheap, oh holy hannah, y’all, after my budget post I told myself I could only go to Target if I ABSOLUTELY needed something, and I haven’t been since and . . . my bank account is noticeably, ah, larger. I even went so far as to price out staples like deodorant online and thus, have a six-pack of Dove winging its way to my house as we speak so that I do not even need to get out for THAT. And THEN I realized that while I am saving boatloads of money by exercising supreme restraint in avoiding my beloved red-signed paramour, I am also one one-click away from becoming an agoraphobic hermit who may raise the next Unibomber if we don’t get out. It never dawned on me how much I relied on SHOPPING to get us out of the house, particularly when we’re seeing friends less due to illness.
I see, ah, lots of trips to the public library in our future. Also, begging my friends to come over even if people are puking, because JUST GIVE THEM A BUCKET, WE CANNOT GO TO TARGET, WHO CARES ABOUT NOROVIRUS WE NEED SOCIAL INTERACTION.
Well, maybe not norovirus. But strep, flu? I’ll risk it. Just get me out, man, GET ME OUT. Otherwise I’m about to drive over to the red mecca and throw myself into the dollar bins.
(We have friends coming over tomorrow. Please don’t worry about us. Saved for another day.) (If they cancel, I will weep.)
— Target avoidance aside, I suddenly realized another reason why we haven’t been getting out as much, and that is the two-nap trap. It’s been a long time since I’ve had a twice-daily napping infant, and it is, ah, limiting, is it not? You get up, two hours later, BOOM! A nap. Three hours after that, BOOM! Another nap, but the thing is, you don’t want to do much in those three hours because WHO WANTS TO RISK THE NAP? No one. So you BOLT as soon as the kid wakes up from nap one, because a car nap could make the rest of the day AWFUL, or you wait until after the second nap, at which point, who feels like going anywhere, really. NOT I SAID THE FLY.
— I’m on a crapper of a reading streak, lemme tell you. Megan McCaffety’s “Bumped”? Unreadable. Abandoned. I’m currently reading Kate Morton’s The House at Riverton, and given that her Forgotten Garden is an all-time favorite, I had high hopes. It is . . . just okay. Even my smut choices have been lacking (Naked/All In/Blackstone Affair is . . . just okay for me.) The last book that really sucked me in was Gone Girl. What say you? Do YOU have any good books? Trashy and smutty choices are welcomed.
I blame you, January. I BLAME YOU.
January 30th, 2013
Hey, here’s a funny story in the TMI category, but look, never stopped me before: Shortly after I posted about the ANXIETY SPIRAL I . . . I got my period. I am not suggesting these things are related, OH HO, I would never do such a thing, but I’m saying I . . . I feel better. Draw your own conclusions.
Anyway, here are some quick things I’ve been thinking about — I’ve promised to write here more, for myself, even if no one reads it. Besides, my mother would yell at me if I stopped. “I passed the URL on to the ladies at church and you hadn’t even UPDATED,” she admonished me one day.
The ladies at church. A conservative church. Well! What a surprise this is and must have been for them. Hello, church ladies, I am terribly sorry for my period talk and potty mouth.
— This is the first year I’ve really had Things I wanted to accomplish. Concrete things that are measurable and actionable and move the needle somewhere. I — we — have some pretty aggressive financial goals, so I have been redoing our budget and making changes and GOD, look, every time I fall off the wagon a little, I forget what a money nerd I am. I kind of get off on slashing things and doing without and making little changes to save money here and there. (MY KINGDOM FOR A GIANT SLASH IN FLORIDA.) I can exercise such RESTRAINT with money when I put my mind to it, and it makes me feel virtuous and smug and each purchase I don’t make cheers me to no end, as does the monthly transfer into whatever account I’m paying down or growing.
It’s gaining satisfaction from deprivation, which is twisted but rewarding, right? So why why WHY am I not as disciplined with diet? WHY? It’s the same principles! The same theoretical rewards made real! WHY? WHY? WHY?
— In the realm of finances, I was chatting with Liz today and talking about my biggest hang-up with money is that I am STUPID with spending and sort of thoughtless. Like, I will spend $500 in a single month at Target if I’m not careful, but if I have to make a SINGLE purchase more than, say, $50, I balk. Oh, that’s too much MONEY, I’ll tell myself. When really, it’s not any more than I’ve spent on random shit like an extra pair of unnecessary leggings, four crappy T-shirts, a face mask and six extra boxes of Band-Aids that were on sale. Stuff I didn’t even NEED.
But if I STOPPED doing that and actually started paying attention, I could use that money to buy something I DO need, like new couches, because I’m sure you thought yours were disgusting, but you’re wrong. Ours are the grossest. We bought them back in 2000, when we moved into our first apartment together. That’s right, we have THIRTEEN YEAR OLD couches that have been through a cat, a dog, two children and seriously, I think I had a nicer sofa set in college. The cushions on the back don’t even stand up anymore. But it seemed so ILLOGICAL to buy new ones when we were having, you know, small children who will, and have, barf, pee, poop and otherwise sully them. Except we realized that we don’t spend any time in an ENTIRE ROOM OF THE HOUSE, because we hate sitting on them so much.
But no. Much better to have stockpiles of awful beauty products lying about. Buy the damned couches.
– Why am I still talking about this? I don’t know! Maybe because I’ve spent three days talking to financial advisers and re-doing budgets and buying Hello Wallet and GETTING SHIT DONE. I feel like some kind of FINANCIAL WIZARD, but really, ah, no.
I’m sure this is all very riveting. Sorry. Look, I never promised you a rose garden.
I hope you have a great weekend.
January 24th, 2013
Well, I was going to come back with Allie’s birth story, but that’s just a little too far away from what’s happening NOW, so you know, HEY! (Ho!) Might as well launch in with what’s been happening since, I don’t know, DECEMBER.
The holidays, am I right? That was a bit of a crazy time, and we’ve still got Christmas-related visits coming and time is flying flying flying, but at the same time, this las week was basically a standstill. An utter standstill.
Without going into details, I will say that I got the stomach virus, WHICH MY BLOOD TYPE PROMISED ME I WOULD BE IMMUNE TO, and it was awful. Awful. Oh, it was awful. You know, for the most part, I have found parenting to be easier and more enjoyable than I anticipated, I did not see parenting while deathly ill to be so . . . challenging. I’m not just talking about the sniffles or a cold here, I’m talking about getting up at 3 a.m. after vomiting for hours and finding that SURPRISE! Since YOU are dehydrated, you are not producing milk! Which your baby needs to eat! TO LIVE!
AAAAAHRUGHET. Honestly, I probably should have considered the ER for fluids, but at a certain point, the thought of having Adam and the children drive me to the ER (no way could I drive myself), then Adam driving back and/or waiting with two kids in the germ-infested hospital was just . . . oh christ, it was too much, it really was. So when people tell new parents these new! awful! horrors that will befall them once they have children, I would like to say that they are completely wrong, because you WILl sleep again and you WILL read books again and life will be lovely, but what will NEVER HAPPEN AGAIN is that delightful, luxurious misery spent pining quietly away in your sick bed. No. Your sick bed will have a three-year-old crawling all over you, terrified for your safety, and an infant who needs to eat and a husband who is trying desperately to corral them both, but cannot, because honestly, there comes a time when physical restraint of a SMALL PERSON who just wants to see her mom is plain stupid.
So there you go. Wash your hands, friends.
And then Adam went to Mexico on a mancation (I KNOW) and we were alone, and do you guys know what happens when I’m isolated with little to no adult contact for a week? Holy crap, it was hideous. Hideous. I became emotionally invested in every online controversy, ever. I developed really, no-shit HARDCORE opinions about Tangled’s Mother Gothel. I thought about Ursula the Sea Witch an awful lot and the worst part is that I yelled. A lot. At poor Sam. I mean, she was a total asshole at times, but SHE was cooped up too, and had been sick (OH YES, SHE TOO GOT THE BARFLES OF MAGIC) and missed her daddy and I just . . . ugh. This week will be better. As long as I don’t spend an entire night hovered miserably over the toilet, this week will be better. And Adam is home and he comes home and regales me with adult things and doesn’t ask me to snuggle at the moment I’m LEAST snuggable and the best part is that he doesn’t wake me up in the morning, although he can’t really save me from the people who do.
See you guys soon. Pulling an Alexa and deciding to just write something, throw it up there and just get back in the damned habit.
*Oh look, it’s the Lumineers again. THIS IS SAM’S FAVORITE SONG, EVER.
January 14th, 2013
I know there are no more babies after this one, and frankly, I don’t even think that rationally, I WANT any more babies beyond two. I know Adam definitely doesn’t. Yet, I have two friends who are either in the process of gestating or thinking about creating, their third and it makes me inexplicably sad. That will never be me. I won’t have a boy, I won’t have three children who each have either two sisters or a brother and a sister. I mean, it’s SILLY, I guess to think about, since it’s not something I ever, ever wanted — three children, that is — but here I am.
I think it’s less that I want three children, and more that that I want to be the type of person who wants three children, I guess.
I mean, I am CERTAINLY not cut out for three pregnancies, considering the hyperemesis, the dairy intolerance (which my doctor is suspecting is actually an allergy! HURRAY!), the general aversion to all things food-related, bizarre yeast infections ON MY FACE, two ear infections, crippling fatigue and OH YES, less-than-robust fertility. And that’s just the pregnancies that worked, because if I were to get pregnant again, it would actually be round seven. Two out of six intended pregnancies working out AIN’T GREAT ODDS. I mean, the WRITING IS ON THE WALL, PEOPLE. I’m finished here. But it sort of sucks, even though I do not even WANT to continue on! What is this?
None of this makes any sense at all. Then again, neither does having children, when you get right down to it. Hey, let’s give up sleep, an astonishing amount of money and EVERY LAST BIT of personal freedom and/or free time for this tiny person who shows zero appreciation for any of it for AT LEAST thirty years! And let’s do it TWICE! Jesus, a pet shark is probably more rewarding and/or predictable. At least you can go on vacation alone, and a shark sitter is probably cheaper than one who watches live children.
Obviously, it’s much better than that. It’s great, actually. It’s just . . . I mean, WHY ELSE WOULD WE WANT MORE?
There seems to be no arguing with biology. I remember about a minute after I had Sam, my body was screaming MORE MORE MORE! LET US ALL HAVE MORE! It wasn’t until the hormones wore off that I adopted a more reasonable approach of only, say, ELEVEN, instead of forty. And then, even as sleep grew more easy to come by and life became easier and she became FUN, I realized I am not cut out to be the mother of more than two children, due to my personal limitations and more practical constraints like finances.
Ah, but still. As Swistle rightly pointed out, though, there will ALWAYS be a last baby, and it will ALWAYS be sort of bittersweet, I expect, no matter when that baby comes. Even if it’s the seventh, I guess.
I mean, I’m pregnant! Miserably so! Why am I sad not to do this again? LOGIC HAS NO PLACE HERE. But still, I am a little sad, knowing that this is it. Once she’s here, that’s our family. And it will be a WONDERFUL family, the precise one I wanted, but I think seeing the end of anything is always a little sad, even if it’s the right thing to do.
In other illogical news, I’ve had a sore throat on my left side since about January. An excruciating one, in fact, that started at the tail end of a rather brutal plague-like sickness that felled our entire household. Like a moron, I just let it go, because I’m pregnant! It’s just a sore throat! Everything lingers! Post-nasal drip! Whatevs! Until things got rather out of control and I could barely swallow iced tea, and finally, FINALLY, I sucked it up and went to the doctor.
Ear infection. EAR INFECTION. Eardrum so swollen, it was about to burst! But no ear pain. Just a sore throat. One day. ONE DAY of antibiotics and you guys, it’s gone. It’s GONE. I AM AN IDIOT. PLEASE DO NOT BE SO STUPID. Although realistically, you’re all grown-ups who don’t get ear infections, because you don’t go to preschool. And really, neither do I, I AM JUST PREGNANT, WHEN THESE THINGS HAPPEN.
Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to go clean out every closet in the house, because for some reason, I can’t have a baby until I have eliminated all of the clothes that I don’t wear anymore. Babies CARE about outdated capris, you know.
April 5th, 2012
OH HELLO I HAVE A BLOG.
I hate when I do that. Not because I think YOU care, but because I then procrastinate writing again, as I feel like I have to say something VERY PROFOUND, either about what I’ve been thinking about or what I’ve been doing, when the reality is I’ve been busy . . . gestating. And gesticulating, I suppose, when I have the energy to move my arms. I mean, HONESTLY, y’all, when did pregnancy get so EXHAUSTING? Again! I never got the honeymoon period of ALL THAT ENERGY that is purported to happen in the second trimester, which is not surprising, and it’s fine, really. It’s FINE. Although here I am in my third, so, ah, yeah. I did enjoy a man telling me that I should be feeling better by now. ORILLY SIR? Tell me about the last time you were pregnant!
That’s one thing that gives me hope about newbornhood this time around. Pregnancy is annoying and miserable and fraught with food issues (I’m lactose intolerant, what IS that?), but it’s positively FLOWN by, and I know it’s temporary, and once it’s over, I . . . well, honestly, I never have to do it again. Frankly, even if I wanted more children, I think the nail was placed in that coffin shortly after I unknowingly ingested sour cream and was doing every gastrointestinal-related horrible thing at once, to the tune of having to throw away TWO garbage cans and Lysol the living daylights out of our bathroom at 2 a.m. NO THANK YOU, EVERYONE. I am good with two.
I’ve also finished Downton Abbey (TEAM MARY!), am reading Maisie Dobbs (Meh?) and working on the wackiest book I’ve ever encountered in my life (Tom Robbins on acid, but for children. I don’t even know), PLUS, I also take a nap every afternoon. Obviously I am the busiest person who ever lived, so stop pretending your life is hard. THIS IS THE HARDEST. You think it’s easy to nap every day AND get the laundry done? I NEED A BLOG FOR MY UNIQUE CHALLENGES OF GETTING IT ALL DONE. WHERE IS MY ESSAY IN SOME SORT OF “JUGGLING IT ALL” COLUMN IN THE WALL STREET JOURNAL?
No, seriously, that’s pretty much how it goes. By the end of the day, I am so pooped from all of the exertion spent doing light parenting (totally a thing) and keeping us out of a general state of total squalor that I just . . . God, well, I feel like I’ve been working as a nurse on the front lines in Afghanistan, and it makes me feel so pathetic that I’m embarrassed to even admit it, but admit it, I must. I am also strangely impressed with my ability to still sleep on my stomach, despite it being gigantor, thanks to a jury-rigged contraption consisting of a feather pillow and my best friend, the body pillow. Sure makes the urge to evict this tiny parasite a WEE BIT LESS urgent than it was with Sam, when all I wanted to do was lie flat on my belly in blissful slumber. If I’ve got that NOW, what’s the motivation for anything else? I’m a parent of two! And yet I am also sleeping on my stomach! LET’S GO FORTY MORE WEEKS!
Fine, not really. Because the sooner we move past this, the sooner we’re all sleeping through the night again and then life will REALLY BEGIN ANEW. So, look for some new vim and vigor sometime in 2014, if Sam’s example is any indication, I suppose.
ANYWAY, that is what’s new. I mean, other than an excessive amount of hand-wringing and facepalming about politics and SCOTUS and health care and women and racism and The Hunger Games (OOH OOH I LOVED THE MOVIE) and OH MY GOD, YOU GUYS, THE WORLD HAS LOST THEIR DAMN MINDS. I seem to recall a similar panic when I was pregnant with Sam during the crash of 2008 and that ying yang on CNN was screeching, “Will your ATM cards work tomorrow? FRANKLY, I DO NOT KNOW.” He said that! On television! While pregnant ladies across America watched in horror! GOD, WHY DOES NO ONE THINK OF THE PREGNANT WOMEN?
I’ll see you next week, promise. I BROKE THE ICE NOW.
March 30th, 2012
Hi! Here are the pictures I took at The Blathering:
AWESOME, right? They are awesome. Very beautifully composed, I think.
Ahem. Listen, it’s hard for me to recap this thing, because I think the only people who really care are the people who were there, and I loved Emily‘s recap, because it sums up my feelings as well: I don’t want anyone to feel left out, because I hate to seem like I’m playing favorites, especially since I can say with total sincerity that I had a great time, and would have GENUINELY, NO BULLSHIT, been thrilled if it went on for MANY DAYS and for each meal, I got paired up with one random person for a one-on-one session. In fact, I would LOVE that, because I really did enjoy everyone I met—something I cannot remotely say for other similar events I’ve been to—and there was NO drama, NO crying, NO posturing, NO climbing and it was just NORMAL. A bunch of normal, good-hearted, fun people with something in common (each other and/or the internet) and it was just an honest pleasure.
I will call one person—Here We Go A Jen—out, only because it was EERIE how alike we were and EERIE that in all the years I’ve been doing this (SINCE 2003, OH MY GOD), I’ve never run into her and she never ran into me, and we had NO IDEA who the other one was, but when we met and talked, it was like, um, MAGIC, and now I want to move in with her, the end. And I’m saying this, because if you read ME, you probably don’t read HER, unlike most of the other Blathering people there, who I mostly already knew and you might, too, and you’re welcome, now go read her archives.
And Natalie, because COME ON, the woman let Natalie and me stay IN HER HOUSE, which, if you didn’t know, is this weird little magical land of perfect design and flow, and I found myself wanting to submit it to magazines without telling her. Also, she is charming and wondrous and her family is just so great and SHIT, I am FAILING at calling people out, but the thing is I LOVED EVERYONE AND I AM GOING TO BE SCREWED BY LEAVING THEM OUT. Here. Here is the list of attendees. I loved them all, no kidding.
(I did come to the realization that Jennie and I are like sisters when I unapologetically stole her ice cream sandwich, because you guys, I DO NOT SHARE DAIRY PRODUCTS WITH ANYONE.)
I had a great time. And it was super-comfortable and like I said, not at all dramatic or climbey and branding-like or pretentious and no one commented on my janky feet that I INTENDED to get pedicured on Friday, but didn’t. Also, I forgot to pack a black bra and wore a white one under a sweater dress and NOT ONCE did I catch people giving me the side-eye, even though I’m fairly certain it was obvious at times. They just hugged me, and the best part was that I saw everyone being as welcoming to other people as they were to me, even when they thought no one was looking, so it was utterly genuine.
And with that, I’ll tell you that I started reading the Jaycee Dugard memoir, which is CAH-RAZY and I know I tweeted about it, but you guys, IT IS SO CRAZY. THIS HAPPENED. TO A PERSON. WHO IS STILL ALIVE. I laugh because when I talk to some people who are all, “I’m not a memoir person!” I’m like, UM, ME NEITHER. But it’s one thing to talk about your (totally universal) experiences with parenting as though they are unique snowflakey, but quite another to write a memoir of being IMPRISONED FOR EIGHTEEN YEARS AS A SEX SLAVE, AM I RIGHT?
I’m totally right. Also, Sam is having a GPS implanted in her brain stem this weekend. No big! Just an outpatient procedure!
Have a great Thursday!
*WHAT UP, KE$HA?
October 26th, 2011
Listen, this is a placeholder to inform you that unless you follow me on Twitter, you might not realize that I am not, in fact, dead and/or wallowing in a pool of grief, but am on vacation in North Carolina with my brother and his family, etc etc. (My brother, who informed me when I reached the beach that he’d just seen “three fins, probably sharks” but that I shouldn’t be alarmed! HA HA HA!! NO NEED FOR ALARM IT IS JUST SHARKS HELLO, WE ARE IN JAWWWWZZZZZ.)
Sam and I are flyin’ solo, as Adam is at home working (someone has to!), but hey, we’re having a great time anyway. We are NOW, anyway, after an epically awful road trip to a wedding that seriously left me wondering if leaving the house EVER AGAIN was REMOTELY ADVISABLE. But now? HAPPY HAPPY.
See you next week!
June 6th, 2011
First of all, if you’re thinking about reading It and wondering when, exactly, it picks up and gets really good, the answer is somewhere around page 476. Yes, FOUR HUNDRED SEVENTY-SIX. I was about to give up and just move on to Sookie, when, for reasons unknown, I thought I’d give it another whirl and suddenly, things started moving and happening and it was GOOD and INTERESTING and then I looked and ha ha haaaaa, I was just about halfway through the book. HALFWAY.
This is becoming epic, like the months I read The Historian out of some strange obligation to my childhood allegiance to Vlad Tepes.
Anyway, this weekend was, in a word, perfect, and let me tell you, I really needed it. I’ve been under a lot of unmentionable stress lately, and on Friday, I really wasn’t so sure I was going to get through it. The way I roll when times are rough is to first, absolutely FREAK OUT AND LOSE IT ALL CAPS! I think I’m NEVER GOING TO GET THROUGH THIS! And things are going to be AWFUL! And I will be DEPRESSED FOREVER!
And then I do more of this: !!!!
I also think I quite literally rend my garments, or at least the bathroom towels.
Then I buck up, get it together and face shit like a grown-up. And, well, that’s what I’m going to do. Until the NEXT cause for freak out, and I’m guessing before all is said and done, this cycle should repeat itself 5,469,876 times.
But besides all that, this weekend was amazing in that simple way that I dreamed about before I had a kid. Saturday, we took Sam for ice cream and cow-gazing, and for a kid who hadn’t had ice cream since last summer (I never buy it), she sure seemed excited about it. “ICE CREAM? ICE CREAM?” was the refrain in the car, over and over again until we arrived at Richardson’s and she had her chocolate cone in her hot little hands.
There was ice cream and cows and it was perfect, right up until the moment Sam threw a tantrum because we wouldn’t put her IN the calf pen and leave her to roam with the baby cows. (She’s used to Davis Farmland, which reminds me, if you’re a Massachusetts resident, you need to go there. We’re getting a season pass this year, because it is awesome. Roaming animals and a splash pad? SIGN ME UP.)
Mother’s Day itself featured lobster rolls, a new-to-us park where Sam spun herself dizzy-drunk on the merry-go-round, lounging and Indian food. Honestly, it’s weekends like this that make me feel like wanting anything more than to keep the people I have happy and healthy would be overkill. Greedy, greedy overkill.
You know, we don’t have a particularly luxurious life, and we don’t yet have everything we want, and even though what we DO want isn’t particularly egregious (my two family/material goals: Have another baby and buy a little house), sometimes I just feel so stupidly lucky, and so painfully aware at how spoiled I am compared to some. This, perhaps unsurprisingly, leads me down the path of panicked doom, as though taking even one second of the life I have for granted will mean it gets taken away. Like wanting more for us — no matter how mundane the ‘more’ is — will tip the scales and set off an alarm that we’ve overreached.
Irrational and silly, I know — after all, there are as many people who have much more than we do as there are those who have less — but my little family is too good, I guess, to consider taking for granted.
I hope you had a great Mother’s Day, and that you have get everything you want.
*Um, do you guys remember Dido? Yes, I still have her album. And God, what a terrible name she had/has.
May 8th, 2011
Hey, do you guys remember when I was all uppity about girls’ clothes, and how I didn’t want my kid stereotyped and I was all, where are the basic primary colors? Let us all rejoice in neutrals! Down with the princess stereotype, because MY kid will be different!
This is Sam’s favorite shirt in the whole world:
Excuse the funny angle, as it’s half in the sink after taking it off of her, but you get the idea, yes? It’s a silkscreen of a cat with a SEQUIN CROWN on its head — a pink sequin crown, no less — with the words, “Love being a princess” written behind the cat, over and over and over again.
Friends, my kid is the lady with the cat sweatshirt. She LOVES this thing. If it’s clean, she asks for it, and if it isn’t, God help us all. And no, if you were wondering, I didn’t buy it — her auntie Faith, Adam’s sister, did. That it came with a purple velour track suit with sequin tuxedo stripes is almost beside the point at this stage, am I right?
It just makes me laugh, how smug I was. Because while it’s true, I could have hidden the shirt if I was that uptight, I also knew she’d love the damn thing and you know what? She does. I also will admit to secretly hoping this happens to hipster parents who ironically dress their infants in rock T-shirts and funky vintage clothing while crowing about their toddler’s amazing taste in music. (“She LOVES Mumford and Sons! She asks for them by name!”)
Yes, I secretly hope those people wake up one day with a two-year-old who begs for Lady Gaga and dances merrily around the room clad only in a T-shirt with a sequin-crowned kitty on it. Call me petty, but there it is.
ANYWAY, I don’t even know what happened to the last week, there. I went out to dinner with a friend, we spent the weekend driving around and tooling around in this glorious, glorious weather and then, BADOW! it’s Wednesday and we almost have to do it again, and while I love this life, sometimes the weeks just fly by without even realizing it, because nothing monumental was ACCOMPLISHED, you know? Oh, sure, I spent an hour and a half folding laundry tonight, but GOD HELP ME, I WILL DO IT AGAIN TOMORROW.
(Note, this is not unique to at-home people, this is just, sadly, LIFE. I mean, unless you’re a surgeon who saves lives, in which case you can be all, I REMOVED TEN BRAIN TUMORS THIS WEEK. And then I’ll clap you on the back like, WAY TO GO, DEREK SHEPHERD. I UNLOADED THE DISHWASHER THREE TIMES.)
I can’t complain, though, because it’s nice out, and we can go to the park and hang with friends, and I’ll take it, you know? I was reminded today that while it’s nice to want things for your future, if you spend too much time agonizing over them, you miss your life. Which, last time I checked, is happening right now. Silly little platitude, but it really helped.
Unfortunately, it is not enough to stop me from continuing to slog through Stephen King’s It, and hey, anyone want to talk about a book that was published almost 25 years ago? NO? After loving the shiznit out of my very FIRST Stephen King, Bag of Bones (seriously, in my top five favorite books ever. SERIOUSLY), Adam was up my ass to read It. “Have you read It? Have you read It?” So I, after finishing The Passage on vacation, and continuing with a nice, if unremarkable diversion of Neverwhere and The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie, finally started It.
And now, what, two weeks later? I’m 400 pages into it, which, if you can believe it, IS NOT EVEN HALFWAY and I … NOTHING HAS HAPPENED. Also, I BLAZE through books, usually, so for me to only cover 400 pages in two weeks is Not Good. And then it turns out that Adam doesn’t think he was thinking of It when he was so effusive in his recommendation and, in fact, has never even READ THE BOOK, and might have only seen the movie (miniseries?), and I AM VAGUELY MURDEROUS OVER HERE, because now I am IN THIS SHIT, but also procrastinating like a mo’ fo’, because NOTHING IS HAPPENING.
The last time I felt this way was when my book club picked Margaret Atwood’s Alias Grace, which I HATED, despite my love for literally every other thing the woman has ever written. I wanted to give up so many times, but NO! My devotion to book club kept me going. Naturally, I arrived at book club to find that I was the ONLY ONE TO HAVE MADE IT THROUGH, as every other person in the room gave up.
While Jesus may have turned water into wine, the real miracle is that I didn’t throw my wine at the room at large, because MY GOD. MY GOD.
Besides, the new Sookie Stackhouse is here, but NO. I AM STILL READING IT.
I hope you have a great Thursday.
(PS, if you’re wondering, yes, I added ads back. I joined Federated Media via the Clever Girls Collective and … I hope they aren’t making your eyes bleed too much.)
*Lady Gaga, natch.
May 4th, 2011
First of all, I think it’s absolute CRUST that people are behaving as though they are above the royal wedding. Now, listen, I get if it’s Not Your Thing, but you don’t have to act like you’re cooler than me because you’re not interested. Come on! COME ON! It’s this bizarre antiquated institution full of bizarre mores and customs and yes, Charles and Diana’s wedding was a TOTAL SHAM, but for the LOVE, it’s still stupidly exciting. It’s watching CELEBRITIES GET MARRIED, and if you think I wouldn’t have tuned in when Jennifer Aniston and Brad Pitt got married (RIP, Brad & Jen), you are seriously off your rocker.
I’m not even a WEDDING PERSON, but if I can tune that shiznit in from the comfort of my own home, with Twitter at the ready and perhaps a mimosa? I am so there. In fact, if you follow me on Twitter and don’t want my unsolicited, unfiltered opinions on the wedding, perhaps it’s best if you unfollow me on
Sunday FRIDAY DUH SORRY. I won’t be offended, so long as you come back when it’s over.
This weekend I wrapped up a couple of work proposals, and I realized today that if they come through, I might … um, hire someone to help with part-time child care. I just … well. It dawns on me that most people do their work during the day and are sort of kind of done at night, save for some loose ends, and don’t spend every minute of their free time trying to cram an ENTIRE DAY’S WORTH OF WORK into four hours every nap/night, and wait wait, this is why people have work days and … hm, maybe I want to reevaluate some things here, eh? I’m not talking a LOT, just a few hours here and there and … well, I popped the childcare panic-cherry by enrolling her in preschool and apparently it’s a slippery slope that I’m pretty comfortable with, and also, this is a no-shitter to most of you, but forgive me, I AM SLOW.
Speaking of slow, on at least two occasions recently, I have been reminded of and/or once again experienced the type of parents who, and I hope I explain this properly, seem to actually believe that their kids really ARE superior to every other child on earth, and fail to grasp that it might be — just a little — colored by the fact that they are the parents, you know? Like, I’ve had multiple conversations, and I KNOW y’all have too, with parents who talk about their smart, glorious children in a way that suggests, somehow, that I’m supposed to be jealous of their children? As though I would … trade my child for theirs, or somehow think that my (perfect, brilliant) offspring is INFERIOR to theirs and I got a dud model? Or … that your parenting MUST be better than mine, and OH TEACH ME, JEDI.
Look, we’re all proud of our kids. I think Sam is the most amazing person I’ve ever met, or likely ever will meet. I find her endlessly fascinating and funny and of course, I believe she’s exceptionally smart and beautiful, but I ALSO recognize that I am her MOTHER and thus, it is my job to believe those things. And as a mother, I also realize that you, a bystander, might not feel the same way, because it’s not really your job to feel that way, and honestly, I might find it a little creepy if you did.
Am I … making sense? I mean, yes, I share stories of her, and how funny she is, but I recognize that *I* think she’s funny, and I would never talk about her as though she is the FUNNIEST CHILD WHO EVER LIVED, because I realize that’s probably not true (there are other mothers out there, of course), and also, that’s obnoxious. And yet, you would be amazed at the number of people who do NOT recognize this fact.
Further, this is what I want for my daughter in life: I want her to be happy. I want her to do her best and achieve things, and reach her potential and all that Tiger Mother bullshit, but most of all, I want her to be happy with herself, her choices and her life. I’m not sure any of that is fully realized at age two, you know? I don’t care if your two-year-old is a Mensa candidate and can speak four languages beyond the fact that it makes you happy, and hopefully she’s happy … it has really very little to do with MY kid and how I perceive her successes and failures.
Even if your kid can speak Mandarin while painting elaborate Ukrainian eggs and knitting a sweater, I am STILL going to prefer my kid to yours, sorry. The same way that, say, I might possess more self-awareness than you by not rubbing my kid’s accomplishments in your face like an obnoxious one-upper, by some strange miracle, your child will still prefer you to me. THIS IS HOW THINGS WORK.
I’m rambling, and it probably isn’t making any sense. I just find some parents amusing is all, I suppose. Because once again, are we supposed to be JEALOUS of their CHILDREN and want to TRADE OURS IN FOR THEIRS? If only … If only I’d given birth to THAT KID instead!
You know what else is amusing? When Sam wakes up, she demands that Sunny get up too. Girlfriend is SO! EXCITED! about! Sunny! that she can’t keep it together until the dog comes out, reluctantly and very slowly. Mind you, this is a dog who, up until recently, woke up FOR THE DAY no earlier than noon, and now Sam’s rousing her by 7 at the latest. She’s … very tired. Sam, ever perceptive, realizes this, and by 8, is usually trying to make things right by giving Sunny a fluffy pillow, blanket, her juice and both remote controls.
“There you go, Sunny! There you go! Rest up!” She then covers Sunny with the blanket and tries to force her to take a drink from her sippy cup. “REST UP, SUNNY! JOOOOOOOOSE?”
Meanwhile, Sunny’s wondering what the hell happened to her cushy life. Having a baby hardly changed it at all, but having a toddler rocked her whole world, and not in a good way.
Hey, I hope you have a great Tuesday.
April 25th, 2011