Showing posts from March, 2013

Great Expectations

I really thought today would be different.  I did.  After all, my youngest has already reached the august age of 7, and we have only 4 children at home this Easter; there's no reason not to be able to pull off a civilized sort of Easter dinner, with everyone sitting down at the same time.  I even stacked the odds in my favor by keeping it simple - roast beef sandwiches (PB&J for the vegetarians) on delicious bakery rye bread, with ice cream sundaes for dessert.  No worrying about different hot dishes being ready at the same time, no mountains of pots and pans to detract from the holiday atmosphere. 

So I gave it the old college try.  I had the children spread the Easter tablecloth (well, not cloth, exactly - more like vinyl, with pictures of bunnies and eggs on it, but "cloth" sounds better, doesn't it?) and set out matching plates (an Easter miracle, right there - 6 matching plates, albeit plastic and from Target), along with pretty dishes of strawberries and pi…

Easter Lite

Our long-suffering townhouse neighbors have figured out a way to exact revenge.  Either that, or it's a normal thing to start tearing up one's kitchen floor at 11 PM on a Friday.  So, yeah, getting to bed early this evening didn't quite work out for me.  I don't really mind, as I have to finish up my work contract, anyway.

Of course, once I do that, I'll be unemployed.  But at least I'm not enduring the agony of a DIY kitchen remodel.  And maybe the lack of extra income will keep Larry from tearing out any more walls in this house of ours.  One can only hope.

I hope no one is expecting an uplifting post about Easter here.  I've spent the week pretending it wasn't bearing down on us; so now I have to spend tomorrow racing around, searching for eggs suitable for dying.  No one here has ever quite gotten over the trauma of that long-ago Easter when I bought eggs with brown shells by mistake.

For the record, brown plus any color?  Equals brown.

I do give my…

Spring Stinks

You know, in these parts, we used to refer to this time of year as "Cherry Blossom Season." We'd look forward to the gradual unfolding of these delicate flowers and even take bets as to when "peak bloom" would occur.  Oh, the gloriousness of those pink blossoms against a perfect blue sky!

But now?  We're all just living in grim anticipation of the spring day when the stinkbugs emerge from hibernation and, instead of heading outside, bumble obnoxiously into our living spaces.  You know what's fun?  Being awakened from a sound sleep by the buzzing sound of one stupid stinkbug that has decided to fly around the bedroom in the middle of the night and divebomb your head.  Also fun?  Finding a stinkbug sitting on a toothbrush that has been mistakenly left out on the bathroom vanity overnight.

Trying to decide where I want to run away to...

[Cherry blossom image: TakeTours]

Look Before You Link

I have JenniferJo over at Mama's Minutiae to thank for the fact that my skin is crawling and I will never get to sleep again.  That's because she posted a link that she said made her happy.  Very happy, even.  I believe the word she used was gleeful.  Hey, I thought, I could definitely use some of that!  And I clicked

What started out as an amusing tale about a marital squabble over a husband's duty (or not) to catch nighttime spiders descended into a blog post discussing thousands of glittering spider eyes, the painfulness of army ant attacks, and a bed covered in cockroaches.  Oh, and let's not forget the picture of the termite mound...

I think I need some sort of Internet filter that blocks any website that mentions bugs.   I also think JenniferJo's version of "gleeful" might be a little bit skewed.  Either that, or she has it in for me.

Wardrobe 911

I decided to try on a couple of pairs of jeans yesterday in Kohl's, when I took Rachel there to buy a white blouse for choir.  That was a big mistake.  BIG MISTAKE.

I've been watching what I eat ALL WINTER, dammit.  I'm really fed up with this disappearing waistline thing.  In fact, I'm ready to ditch jeans all together and just wear elastic waist pants from now on.  Let's see, I think I saw some decent ones at Lands End...maybe you should all help me out here.

How about these?  The problem is, do I need to get all new shirts to go with them?  Shouldn't I be wearing more of a tunic-length with pants like these?  And what about shoes?  I can't wear Dansko clogs with these, can I?  That would look weird, sort of like hooves, right?

See, Larry wonders why I am walking around in jeans that are too tight and full of holes, because he doesn't understand that one simple purchase morphs into the mind-boggling exercise of revamping my entire wardrobe.  I could w…

Open Road

Okay, I'm back.  I just needed to recover from last weekend's mulch extravaganza.  Plus, Theo is home for Spring Break -- his LAST SCHOOL VACATION EVER, because he will graduate and be commissioned in May and will belong to the Army for at least 4 years.  So I needed to spend a good amount of time just looking at him and telling unsolicited stories about his childhood to anyone who would listen (no one).

I swear, it feels as if it were just yesterday that I wrote this post about his first leaving for college.  YESTERDAY.  And now, here I am, waxing maudlin all over again. 

 Also, he bought a brand-new used car this week.  Larry helped Theo shop for it and then left him at the dealer to finish the paperwork and drive it home.  "By himself?" I asked.  "Can he do that?"

"It's HIS car," Larry said.  "He has a license.  Do you want him to have training wheels or something?"

Well, yes - something like that.  The thought of his being allow…

Man Cold

I have just survived another Boy Scout Mulch Weekend, festivities I used to wisely refrain from participating in, until I got roped into running the food tent. Pretty much all day Friday and Saturday were taken up by running to Costco, setting up the tent, feeding hordes of hungry boys, reheating food on camp stoves, and praying for the rain to hold off. All of which would have been okay, had Susie not been up in the wee hours of Friday morning with the croup, meaning I didn't sleep and then had to squeeze in a doctor's appointment before the Costco run; and had Susie not been weeping with exhaustion by the time I was able to leave the food tent on Friday evening (a scene repeated on Saturday morning and Saturday night).  Also? Sometime during my all-night croup vigil, I managed to catch the same cold.

So, yeah, I felt AWESOME during all this.  Short on sleep, sick, and stressed as hell listening to my neglected daughter cry...

So, today!  A day blessedly free of mulch, and…

Paradise Lost

Rachel had a very exciting afternoon planned today.  She was going to ride her bike with her thirteen-year-old neighbor/friend all the way to the little village center a mile from our home, buy some treats, and then ride back.  Never having been allowed out biking without a grown-up before (aside from right in our own neighborhood), she was as excited as a 10-year-old with new-found freedom could be.

So! The girls parked their bikes outside the drugstore and went in to purchase some candy.   They walked out of the store in time to see an older teen pedaling away, hell-for-leather, on my daughter's bright blue bike, the one with the gears and the water-bottle cage, the one she was so happy to inherit from Brian only the week before. 

And I would just like to say to this poor excuse for a human being, "Thanks for being an asshole.  Thanks a whole lot."

Time Is A False Construct, Anyway

The daylight savings time clock change is KICKING MY BUTT.  We just had breakfast, and it is almost time for lunch. 

That is all.

Contra Indicated

Have I ever mentioned that, while I am under 5 feet tall, Larry happens to be OVER 6 feet?  It's true - there is exactly a 14-inch height differential between us.  As you can imagine, this has made for a 20-year relationship devoid of such activities as dancing, or even running, together.

Well, okay, we don't go running together because I am philosophically opposed to such masochistic behavior.  But, even if I weren't?  We wouldn't.

 Over these 20-some years, we have made various pathetic attempts to keep our marriage lively and vibrant, mostly with walks (during which we discuss such stimulating topics as the kids, money, and other problems) and the oft-recommended date nights (ditto) - but recently we had pretty much given up on that, seeing as how they just don't seem to work for us.

 Do click on that link - it's classic.

So imagine my surprise yesterday when Larry, upon hearing my announcement that I was going to attend a local contra dance with free lesson…

Meteorologists Can't Be Trusted

Um, let's just not talk about today's major snow disappointment, all right?  If you need the sorry details, you can check out Buzzfeed's rundown of the (non)event.  Suffice it to say that my kids handled it all with remarkable grace, while their mother hid in her bedroom closet and had a tantrum.

And now, to top it all off, my husband tells me Bonnie Franklin is dead.  AND I read that Valerie Harper is dying.  People, I was not a social butterfly in my youth.  I spent all my weekend nights at home or at my friend's house, watching sitcoms such as Rhoda and One Day at a Time.  And, yes, Loveboat.  So it feels as if all my friends are dying off, friends who - for me, anyway - are frozen as they were in the 1970's, young and energetic and sassy. 

Oh, all right, Bonnie was sort of annoying.  I only watched that show because I wanted to be just like Valerie Bertinelli.  But still, Ann Romano can't possibly be old enough to be dead, can she?  In my mind, she's al…

Like Disneyworld, Only Better

For 3 years, we've been deprived of even so much as a 2-inch snowfall in this area; for 3 winters, our kids - sleds at the ready - have waited patiently for one big storm, big enough to cancel schools and work -- cancel everything, really, but the fun.  And, at long last, it looks as if their patience will be rewarded.

8-10 inches are predicted for tomorrow, people - and we are OVER THE MOON about this.  Do you know how dreary it is to go through an entire winter without even one snow day to break up the monotony?  At last, our ridiculously fast-paced suburban lifestyle will be made to stand still, if only for 24 hours or so - and snowmen will be built, cocoa will be drunk, homemade cinnamon rolls will be consumed with abandon. 

Bring it on, Mother Nature - we are SO ready.

[Sled image: Arthur's Clipart]

Improv Isn't All It's Cracked Up To Be

Never blog when tired.  You end up going to bed right afterwards, and then the blog world insinuates itself into your dreams.  Last night, I dreamt that I traveled to Los Angeles to participate in some theater/improv workshop run by Suzy Soro.  When I got there, all the other workshop participants were being outfitted in pretty dresses (a la Renaissance style); but Suzy said to me, "You don't need a dress.  You're going to be the pig."

"Pig?  Um, okay.  So, uh, where's my costume?" I asked, enviously eyeing a compatriot being outfitted in a gauzy white flowing number.  I knew better than to argue with Suzy, even in my sleep.

"What you've got on is fine," she said.

I looked down and saw I was wearing ugly jeans and an even uglier bright blue button-down top.  Where did I get those?  I wondered.

"Okay," Suzy said.  "You've got to go outside now."


"Yes, you're the PIG.  You have to run awa…

Ticket To Ride

Is it possible to be too tired to blog?  Because that seems to be the situation here, for no apparent reason.  Just popping in to tell you that my train ride yesterday was like a mini-vacation, only better, because I didn't have to pack for anyone but myself.  I read, I knit.  I finished one pair of socks and started another.  Sometimes I just stared out the window, enjoying the silence.  And I hit the jackpot on the return trip - a pair of seats facing another set of seats, ALL 4 TO MYSELF.  In the quiet car. 

Sometimes, fortune does shine upon me.  And I do appreciate it.

Oh, and yes, there was a funeral.  But I got to see my dad and some cousins I haven't seen in years, and I met other relatives I didn't know I had.  All in all, a good way to spend a day, if you forget about the death part.

Do I sound callous?  It's just the exhaustion speaking, I swear.  Come back tomorrow, when I shall strive to be properly mournful.  Also, you'll get to hear about apples and…