Thursday, July 31, 2008

10 9 Things that gross/creep me out

1. Mushy, starchy foods like mashed potatoes

2. Peanut butter on bread (too sticky or something - I've never really been able to pinpoint what I don't like about it)

3. As a kid, I loved swimming lessons but hated walking on the sopping wet tile, especially with the wet fuzz and mystery hairs that were rampant all over. I still get the heebies just thinking about it.

5. HATE.feet. I can barely stand to hear the word 'toenails'. It grosses me out just to type it. Eww.

6. There must NOT be errant hairs in the shower when I get in. This ties in with #4. Eww.

7. If I find my husband's body hair on my soap, I go ballistic. Especially when it's my favorite bar of Bliss soap. Note to self: get him his own soap for birthday. Actually, get him his own bathroom so he can drip pee on the floor and hair it up to his heart's content. Why do I have him around, anyway?

8. Men who have long fingernails.

9. Smoker fingernails. They're all thick and yellow and nasty. I just threw up in my mouth a little bit.

10. Chipped nail polish. JUST TAKE IT OFF ALREADY.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

WW - Caption This

I can't think of a good caption. Any ideas?

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Weekend Bullet Points

1. On Friday night (rehearsal), the girl was WIRED. SIL actually had an idea that a 3 year old would be capable of standing at the altar for the duration of the 30 minute ceremony. Uh, yeah. The rehearsal cured that notion.

2. Friday night's activities included the rehearsal, rehearsal dinner, and "open house". All of them a requirement for husband and I. SIL gets tiny cake for husband's and my 10th anniversary. Woo hoo.

3. Saturday: I was able to get out for an AM hour of shopping at my favorite large health food grocery store, which we do not have in my new neck of the woods. I keep stalking their website and requesting a store, hopefully they'll listen one of these days.

4. "Bridal luncheon" at noon. Parmesan crusted whitefish. YUM. Tasted even better because I didn't have to pay for it.

5. Rush back to IL's house to get dressed. Pics for family at 3:30.

6. Rode with IL's to church rather than take two cars (they have a mini-van). This is significant later on.

7. Ceremony happens. Daughter walks down the aisle excellently, but instead of stopping where MIL and I are sitting, she goes up to the front to stand by daddy at the altar. Whoops. She gets tired after a few minutes, asks to be picked up. Husband holds her for a little bit, then sets her down and tells her to go sit by mommy. She does without talking loudly. Yay!

8. Everyone goes out to church steps for a picture of all guests. Swelter in humid, 80+ degree full late afternoon sun. Perhaps wearing black wasn't such a good idea. Sweat possibly starting to pool in Spanx. Husband's head looking shiny.

9. Tell FIL to get the van's air going full blast, we're going back inside to get bags, hangers, etc. Come back out to VAN NO WHERE TO BE FOUND. Walk around church in bewilderment. STILL NO IN-LAWS. Call MIL's cell phone. STRAIGHT TO VOICE MAIL. Yep. They left without us. WITHOUT THEIR SON, GRANDCHILD, AND red headed stepchild of a DAUGHTER IN LAW. Paid no attention to the kid's music blasting on the satellite radio, just got in the van and blindly headed to the reception.

10. Caught ride with groom's sister. No booster for the kid, but oh well. Husband sputtered the whole way about disowning his parents. I called my mom to tell her the ceremony went fine and that ILs left us at the church...she about peed herself for laughing. Molly got on the phone and said "daddy's distending grandpa".

11. MIL calls, apologizes profusely.

12. Get to reception, Molly walks up to ILs and announces "you left us on purpose!". She then proceeds to walk around telling everyone else that grandpa left us at the church.

13. Kid maintenance through dinner. Ewww. Hard to relax and enjoy when you're constantly worried about where your kid is.

14. Dancing starts. Child makes beeline for dance floor. Dances with everyone, even people she doesn't know. Does not leave floor the entire evening, EVEN FOR CAKE AND ICE CREAM. We finally peel her off the floor 2 hours past her bedtime.

15. Back at ILs, husband farts loudly. Molly stalks down the hall and announces, "daddy, I don't have time for this tooting!"

16. Blissful sleep.

17. Next morning, caterers arrive to set up for brunch. My god, will this weekend never end?

18. 6 hours later, the weekend as I know it ends. I start for home while husband downloads pictures and child takes nap before they leave for home.

I may do more of a narrative later, but these are the highlights (so to speak). As you might imagine, I'm still exhausted from it all. It's a lot of work acting smiley and happy when all you want to do is veg and sleep. Feel free to ask any burning questions about the festivities. ;)

Monday, July 28, 2008

More later...

WOTC OVER!!!! Back home. Work this am. ENT for Molly this pm.

Forgotten at church. M charmed everyone. Too cute in dress.

More later.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Haiku Friday - Apology

Reading, commenting
I've been terrible lately
I will be better.
Next week, more relaxed
More time to look at your blogs
before vacation...
I feel like a child
chastised for being naughty.
Too bitchy lately.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Eventually, you'll get sick of my ranting

You ever feel like your life (or events therein) is just like a big zit with a shiny, quivering head, ready to explode? Yeah. That's what I feel like right now.

So I've already bitched about the wedding of the century this week. I get a call from the husband today explaining why he can't come home tomorrow after taking care of the yard at the old house (the neighbor kid who is supposed to be mowing and trimming weeds is doing a shit-ass job)...I wanted him to come home so we could take one car over. That reason would be the SIX.PAGE.ITINERARY. that details the WOTC. Starting tomorrow and ending on Sunday. I'm surprised they didn't schedule when people were supposed to be taking their daily crap. I'm practically breaking out in hives with this thing. I wasn't this keyed up about my own damn wedding!

And then tonight, I get this email from husband:

"Stop thinking you have it bad... I'd pay to trade spots with you. I'm sitting in the living room with Dad watching "So you think you can dance". It's blaring at 1,000,000 decibels, and he's also farting up a storm. My mom is also showing dad the beginnings of her "hammer toe". Maybe when you are here you can give your opinion of it."

Aaaah. Four days with the in-laws. I can't. f**king.wait.

Helllllllp meeeeeeeeee.

WW - Pick me from the Dork Line-up

These are some of my buddies and I, Spring, 9th grade (circa 1988). We had a series of pictures taken as a surprise for another friend, who was moving away at the end of the school year. The pictures were custom framed in a collage and presented to her at a party given in her honor.
This was a really, really difficult thing to have happen...I grew up in the same house my parents built shortly after their marriage, the same house they still live in today. My core group of friends, with the exception of the one these pictures were done for, all stayed for the remainder of high school. The one who moved away was naturally easier to lose touch with, although several of us went to her 16th birthday party, came for visits occasionally, and eventually, attended her wedding.
This past year, I discovered that I was living and working only about 30 minutes away from this displaced friend. I decided to be brave and showed up with my business card at her office, fully intending to just leave it ,with my contact info on the back, with her receptionist. The receptionist insisted I wait to see if she was getting close to her lunch break. I'm so glad I did, because we've now reconnected. And in many ways, it feels like hardly any time at all has passed between the picture above and now.
So now for the fun: take a guess as to which one is moi. Tuli, you may have an unfair advantage, although you claim you don't remember what I look like. ;) I promise to let all of you who guess know if you're right or not.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

This one is embarrassing, people. I'm hoping that someone else will come out and admit they share the same affliction.
You see, ever since I gave birth, my hormones haven't been the same...thus producing:
random, wiry chin hairs that can sprout seemingly instantly.
This causes a slight obsession. Before I go to bed at night and before I get in the shower in the morning, I must check my chin and neck - just in case one of these sneaky f*ck*rs stuck its ugly head out overnight. I carry tweezers in my purse, in my makeup bag, and in my car. Just in case. I try to (sneakily) feel my chin throughout the day and get myself to a mirror if I detect one. I don't know if people just don't notice this act, or they think I'm pensively contemplating life while I feel my face up.
They are the bane of my existence. I vow that, if I ever hit the lottery, the first thing I spend my money on is LASER HAIR REMOVAL. STAT.
Please jeer quietly. I have a fragile ego. Thank you.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Who'd have thought

that hotels in the Milwaukee area would be so.stinking.expensive? I'm trying to find a place that is reasonable for one night! We're taking the ferry over on Saturday, then going to the zoo and hanging out. Our reservation in the dells doesn't start until Sunday. $140-$150 for one night just seems a little pricey to me, or am I just that cheap?

I am stressed out this week. SILs big hoodoo of a wedding is next Saturday. Husband is leaving tomorrow morning to work in the Ann Arbor area (again), which I suppose works out because he needs to get the final fitting on his tux ($140 to rent. TO RENT.) Which leaves me here to finish my last week of work for the summer stint, take care of my 3 year old, and clean house/pack/etc. to leave on Friday morning (my 10th anniversary, can't even do anything for it because of the hoodoo). Heaven forbid I forget anything. I've been snappish all day (Sunday) in anticipation. I'm tired. I don't want to work this week, but I can't get out of it and can't pass up the per diem $ I'm getting.


I really think I've been dreading this almost all summer. Yeah, I know. Relax, it's just a wedding. Whatever. The annoyance started when they picked the day after husband's and my 10 year anniversary to get married, thus absolutely nixing any thoughts we might have had of getting away that weekend. Then they have to schedule 4 days of activities that we feel compelled to participate in since husband is her only sibling. I understand the wedding thing, but come on. Do you have to drag it out for so many damn days? People, my Myers-Briggs says I'm an ISFJ. The I in that means INTROVERT. That doesn't mean that I'm a total recluse, 'cause I'm not. But I do get very, very tired when I have to exert the effort to be pleasantly social for long periods of time. I need to recharge myself by getting away from people. Sometimes ALL people, including my husband and daughter. If I didn't have that opportunity on occasion, I would go batsh*t crazy. So the fact that I have to spend 4 days with many people, acting happy all the time, stresses me out to no end. So I'm cranky. Very, very, cranky. Andy Rooney cranky. Walter Matthau in Grumpy Old Men cranky, only without the funny.

Wow. How did I get from bitching about the price of Wisconsin hotels to the dreadding on Saturday? Must be I needed to vent. And rant. And bitch. Good thing the name of this is Bitchy and Ranty, huh? Thank you, bloggy peeps, for reading. And being there. And leaving me comments. You have no idea how much they make my day...or maybe you do.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

I never claimed to be a good one


As a 1930s wife, I am
Very Poor (Failure)

Take the test!

Friday, July 18, 2008

Haiku Friday - Ode to the Box House

O beautiful box

turned into a house by my

big brother with love.


I still remember

it fondly, all the different

places it became.


Playhouse, hospital

school, library, vet office,

space shuttle, hotel.


We need to bring back

toys without batteries, so

kids can work their minds.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

WW - Heart and Soul

Can't you just hear the beautiful strains of music now? We had guests a couple weeks ago - my best college buddy ( and vacation buddy - we've vacationed with her and her husband for 8 years and counting) and her daughter stayed with us for a night. Her daughter (Mallory) is 4 months older than Molly and they play together really well. As evidenced, clearly, by the duet they were attempting here.
Pardon my piano. I haven't gotten around to actually arranging stuff up there in a more decorative way yet. My husband mistook the wasp trap for a piece of tchotchke and decided to display it on the piano. I'll get there someday.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008


I'm shaking.

My daughter has been really, r-e-a-l-l-y hard to put to bed lately. We typically (try to) put her down for the night between 7:30 and 8:00. Since she was 5 months old, she has been an excellent sleeper. Once we put her in bed, she'd stay there. After the transition to the big bed, there were a few weeks that were...trying - she'd get out of bed, come downstairs, and wonder what we were doing. Even that resolved, eventually.

I'm not even sure how many nights we've had lately, where she gets out of bed anywhere from 5 to 15 times before finally going to sleep. With husband being out of town (again), I have had yet another evening where I can't relax because I'm running interference with her GOING TO F*ING SLEEP ALREADY.

The first 5 times tonight, I put her back in bed a la Supernanny: you know, don't talk, just put them down and walk out of the room. And each time I did, I grew more and more angry. I seriously had to count to 10 so that I wouldn't spank her...I knew that wouldn't make me feel any better and would do the opposite of calming her down for sleep. Finally, after hearing her bang around yet again, I walked into her room, put her back in bed, then proceeded to empty her bookcase. She started to cry when she realized what I was doing, wailing "Mommy, don't take my books away!". I continued with cold anger, and after cleaning out her books, I cleaned off the top of her dresser, clearing any accessible toys or clothing items.

Then I told her if she got out of bed again tonight, her movies were next. I told her she would have to earn her books back by staying in bed. I left the room.

And I came downstairs and cried. Hard.

Husband called, wanting to know how she did going to bed. My voice gave him the answer. Then he wanted to talk about next week...about how he could take the train to Ann Arbor so that we didn't have to have two cars there for the wedding next weekend.

Out of town again next week. Leaving me to work during the day (with preschoolers and toddlers, mind you), then come home to my own needy girl. And next week, I have to get us both packed and drive to Ann Arbor so that Molly can be a flower girl in her aunt's wedding. Alone. My husband? All he'll need to worry about is getting his tux.

I suppose much of this is displaced anger; anger that husband has had to work out of town so much lately, leaving me to be the single parent. And I know that I'm whining. I work with families who have just one parent all the time, many times with several children in a small home. Single parents who have to work crappy jobs just to make ends sort of meet. Children who have delays or needs that call for me to be in their home. Children who may very well make the same choices their parent did when they grow up.

But I made choices so that I wouldn't have to live that life. And one of those choices was waiting to have a child until I had a husband, a career and a stable job. All I want is to be a good, loving mom.

But I had to close the door angry tonight. And now I'm so, so sad.

True Confession Tuesday Edition 3

At least I think it's #3.

This week's confession is: (drumroll, please):

I must read something while I'm...uh...dropping the kids off at the pool.

And if I'm not reading, I'm playing this:

My beloved Yahtzee has a place of honor on the back of the toilet. Once, tired of my bragging about my gigondously high score, my husband replaced the batteries. Wiped out my score, the bastard. If he does it again, I might have to go Lorena Bobbitt on him.
If I'm into a good book or magazine article, I might be in there until my a** gets numb. (Plus it gets me some peace and quiet for a while. Husband is deathly afraid of my aftermath. As he should be.) At someone else's house? I just find something in there to read. A shampoo bottle, condom wrappers, whatever might be within reasonable reach. I do not go into medicine cabinets or drawers looking for reading material, however. I'm too paranoid that the homeowner would find out I was snooping.
This whole reading phenomenon is not just limited to the bathroom for me, BTW. I read e-v-e-r-y-w-h-e-r-e I can. Riding in the car, eating by myself at the table, before bed, while watching TV, on the porch, in a box, with a fox, on a boat, with a goat ---(whoops, sorry. Read Green Eggs and Ham to munchkin tonight). I have been doing this ever since I learned how to read (my uncle and siblings swear I was 2 1/2 yrs old - I don't remember exactly but I know it was before nursery school). It's a habit...bordering on a sickness, really. But I LOVE it.

I feel cleansed. Thanks for listening.
TruCoTuesday hasn't caught on quite it with me!

Monday, July 14, 2008

Musical past

Some friends and I were talking this weekend about the concerts we'd been to over the course of our lives, so I decided to put down the triviality for all to see. So, in the best chronological order possible, here goes:
1988...The Maiden Voyage

Oh, how I wish I had a way cooler first concert, but alas, no. It was none other than Dick Marx. And not only that, I went with a friend and her dad. Don't tell me what a dork I was, I already know. Thanks.

Number 2. You have to admit, it's way cooler than #1. My closest 5 friends and I got to go to Chicago, chauffered by a much cooler dad (and he didn't actually come to the concert with us). It was pretty damn awesome.


emember how you used to fantasize about that cute upperclassman who would never give you the time of day normally? That fateful dance where you wished he would catch your eye when "You're the Inspiration" or "Hard Habit to Break" would start to play? You know you did. Well, I saw these guys in the flesh from the 10th row, dammit. And they were FANTASTIC. I know they're old, but they can actually play instruments, which is a talent sadly lacking in modern musicians.

I also knew their older 1970s stuff, as my sister was a huge fan in those years. I was singing "Wishing You Were Here" as a toddler, when I wasn't singing stuff from the Carpenters.

Yep! Damn Yankees. The band that opened for them? Jackyl. Anyone familiar with Jesse James Dupree and Jackyl? Anyway, I went with a friend of mine who was experiencing a slight identity crisis. She had a short, bilevel hairdo and wore Nike tracksuits a lot. As a matter of fact, she wore one to this very concert. Didn't fit in well with the big hair, skintight ripped acid washed jeans, and flannel shirts. She had one thing in common with the other concertgoers, though: a tacky tattoo. Me? I probably wore my standard preppy looking outfit with socks that matched my shirt. Probably. I don't remember though.

Oh yes, I did. Vince Neil opened for them at Pine Knob north of Detroit (stupidly named DTE Energy Music Theater now) while it POURED rain (we, of course, had lawn "seats"). Vince sucked, by the way. The crowd was actually cheering for him to get off stage and chanting for Eddie. As soon as he left the stage? Stopped raining. Gorgeous sunset. This was probably 15 years ago (!) and I still remember that phenomenon. As much as I would've liked to see them with Diamond Dave, the Sammy years were good, too. I wouldn't have been old enough to see them with Dave anyway.

The ex and I went to see these guys. Good concert, weird ending. They had men dressed up in fruit suits (think old Fruit of the Loom commercials), dancing around the stage. Someone had a little too much hooch to think that up. We were slightly dumbstruck by it.

At this point, it's apparent that the influence on my musical tastes were influenced pretty strongly by older sibs, right? Although Foreigner had some hits in the mid 80s when I was at my most impressionable (aka puberty). I loved, and will still crank up "That Was Yesterday". Not sure why I like that song so much, but it's always been my favorite of theirs. At this particular concert, Lou Gramm was not sounding so hot. Serious vocal damage happened to that man, and it was sooo very evident. Oh well. At least I had a real seat this time.

I was with a sorority sister of mine when we heard the ad for this concert: "Steve Perry, singing all your old Journey favorites". We screamed in unison and decided then and there that we MUST. GO. And go we did. He sounded great, still rocked the mullet. Our other sisters were grateful that we'd stopped singing "Wheel in the Sky" in the bathroom. What can I say? The acoustics in the community bathrooms were the best.

And then several years passed where I either didn't go to any concerts, or I don't remember what I went to. Who knows? After I got married, at least I'm pretty sure it was after, husband and I went with a childhood friend of mine who also lived in the area. Steve Augeri was the frontman and from the lawn, he looked JUST LIKE STEVE P. And not only did he look like him, but he SOUNDED like him too! I'm still loyal to the first Steve, but this guy was a great knockoff...kind of like those fake Coach purses you can buy at flea markets.
Getting closer to present day...(and hating Blogger's picture formatting. Either it sucks or I suck at using it.)
<------We saw this guy a couple summers ago. They were touring with Chicago and both sets were A.W.E.S.O.M.E. There were 4 couples in our group and we had a phenomenal time. Some drunk dude scared the crap out of me; I had turned around to talk to someone and when I turned back around, this guy was right in my face and screamed "DO YOU LOVE HUEY?" while flashing the devil hands (which just doesn't seem quite appropriate for HL&TN). I think I screamed a little, then mustered up some little "Woohoo!", which apparently satisfied him because he high fived me and left me alone.
And most recently:
last fall, nosebleed seats at the Palace of Auburn Hills - great show! I've started getting M to listen to them and she was actually singing along to "Misunderstanding" last week. She really is my daughter!
We also have plans to end the summer with another Huey know, he looks pretty good for an old dude. I sort of dig the blue tinted glasses for some reason.
I almost forgot one!
County Fair, circa 1993. The scent of manure in the air. Chickens squawking in the background. "Devil Went Down to Georgia". A perfect end to a summer night. 'Nuff said. I challenge anyone to say they turn this song off when it comes on the radio - you know you crank it up and pretend you're Johnny!
What's the best concert you've been to?

Sunday, July 13, 2008

I'm so excited!!!

The wonderful Kat over at Seeking Sanity awarded me, along with 10 others, this:

What can I say? I'm delighted. And humbled. And blushing.

I first saw Kat's blog after seeing comments on mutually visited blogs and, after snooping through some older posts, saw this one about her dad. Commonalities stood out to me - she was about my age (a little younger according to her profile), her dad is a year younger than mine, and she is also dealing with some very painful, harsh medical issues with him.

For some reason, I feel a bond with people who also have older parents: I had times as a kid where I would've given anything to have parents who were more with it. You know in kindergarten, when you boast "my dad can beat up your dad"? Yeah. I was more like "my brother can beat up your dad". (Although in his day, my dad probably could've kicked serious ass. He was a logger, which is one of the most dangerous jobs - if you didn't already know that.) I was defensive to people who assumed that my parents were actually my grandparents. So when I find someone else who shares that, I naturally gravitate. Reading Kat's beautiful, heartfelt posts about her father (who has Alzheimer's) helped me see that I am not alone in dealing with the pain of illness. My dad was recently diagnosed with esophageal cancer, which is not one of the prettier cancers to have, especially when you have 3 stents placed in your heart two weeks before the big C diagnosis. After that, it was all I could do to get dressed and go to work. I didn't know how to deal with it. I mean, my dad is Old Faithful. You could set your watch to his schedule. He was, I thought, invincible.

I learned the hard way that he is not. I can say that he is doing pretty well right now. His heart is stronger, so his energy level is better...and he tolerates the chemo very well for a crusty 77 (oops, 78 now) year old man. My opinion is that the crust helps keep him safe ;).

So Kat, thanks a more ways than one. I don't think I've ever let on to her in comments why I initially started stalking reading her. Now you know!

Friday, July 11, 2008

Haiku Friday - Summer

Vacations. Cook-outs.

Swimming parties all day.

Darkness comes slowly.


Lemonade. Ice cream.

Watermelon stickiness

Eating til you burst.


Watching the sunset

Bonfires at the beach, all

of us making s'mores.


I don't mind the rain

But I don't like thunderstorms.

Tornadoes scare me.


Summer, sweet summer.

I love having time off work.

It goes by TOO FAST.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

It's a darn good thing we didn't build our home from scratch...the mere thought of having to choose all the light fixtures, faucets, doors, doorknobs, etc. makes my head throb.

We've decided that having ceiling fans in the upstairs bedrooms would be a good idea. The rooms get kind of stuffy at night and it would help cut down on running the air conditioner. Do you think that I can find a fan that suits my taste, the decor, and the budget? Not a chance. I would like one that is Energy Star certified, and will reverse direction for wintertime. Those are expensive. I would like one that's white...goes with the decor better. The white ones are, in general, fugly. I would like one that is already equipped with a light, however, the lights on most of these things look like this:

Remind you of anything? Let me put it this way:

NOW does it remind you of anything? Can you see why I might not want these light fixtures on my ceiling fans?
I'm afraid I'll start lactating.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Signs that I am O-L-D...

1. I do TV guide crosswords and enjoy them, dammit.
2. I hate noise.
3. Teenagers annoy the sh*t out of me.
4. My favorite music is starting to get played on the "easy listening" stations...either that or it's the "retro lunch hour".
5. I'm cranky if I don't/can't poop.
6. I am beginning to covet the craftsmatic adjustable bed.
7. I own a pill organizer (mainly for my vitamins, but still! I OWN A PILL ORGANIZER)
8. I can appreciate antiques.
9. I bitch about the prices of gas and food.
10. Having a good stockpile of the right kind of toilet paper is extremely important to me.
11. I listen to NPR.
12. No more Limited, Abercrombie, or Express. Bring on Eddie Bauer, jjill, and LL Bean.
13. I love the Golden Girls (but COME ON, who doesn't!?!)
14. I have no idea what the allure of texting is.
15. I am not on Facebook or MySpace and couldn't care less about it.

Admit it! You know you're with me. How are you O-L-D?

Monday, July 7, 2008 a parade...I think

Am I that much of a sap? At the parade in my hometown, I cried when I saw this:

This is the truck that the fire department named after my uncle. His name is on both doors as well as the front. He was on the department for many years and also took a stint as the fire chief before his retirement. A new department was actually built on the land next to his house (coincidentally), and he spent many a morning walking on the path through the raspberry bushes to the fire hall. Usually he would get a pot of coffee going for the guys. He still listened to the scanner, almost too much, to my aunt's annoyance. Like his little brother, who is my father, he loved to talk. Loved. it. I spent many days at my aunt and uncle's house as a child, and in my mind can still hear him say, "How do?" or "How are ya, tweetie?". As kids, my cousins and I made a list of how very much alike my uncles and my father were - in some ways almost like multiples, even though they were quite a few years apart in age.

My uncle was diagnosed with inoperable lung cancer in 2002. He died in January 2003, just a few days shy of his 80th birthday. This new truck was ordered the summer before, and it was unanimously decided by the guys that his name should be put on it. My uncle was not told about that decision beforehand. He was called over to the hall the day it was delivered, and he happily traipsed over there to see the new piece of big machinery. He did not notice his name at first and was absolutely beside himself when it was pointed out. I have a picture of him the day he first saw "his" truck, and he is beaming.

He died while in Florida for the winter. We knew he wasn't doing well, and I told my father that I would take off school (I was in an internship at the time) and drive him down to Florida. After all, this was his last living sibling and the one he was closest to. We never had a chance to get there.

He had an official funeral, complete with "Last Call". I still, five years later, can't tell the story of "Last Call" without tears running down my face. My dad, one of the generation who does not cry, had tears in his eyes. The procession to the cemetery was one that my uncle would have grinned was absolutely, massively, hugely long. The fire truck above led the way.

Seeing that truck brings back those memories, both good and bad. I guess now they could be called bittersweet. I never meant to post about all this, but I feel better in a way. Like at least a part of his story is out there.

I miss him. RIP, Uncle Sherm.

Friday, July 4, 2008

I know this should be a Freedom Haiku or something, but...

I had an alternative in mind.

My quest for beauty

ended with ninety-five bucks

at the MAC counter.

What did I get for

this sum? Three eyeshadows and

two brushes. Oy vey!

It's a good thing that

I do the bills, because my

hubs would sh*t his pants.

I should go back to

Bonne Bell/Wet 'n Wild-

At least it was cheap.

So seriously? Instead of asking how much the make-up brushes cost before purchasing, I decided to just ride it out. Obviously, that was a biiiiiig mistake. Now I'm searching for cheaper brushes online so I can take the MAC ones back to Macy's, which will give me $50 back. And why did I spend this kind of money at a make-up counter? Because I haven't bothered with much more than powder and mascara since I gave birth 3.25 years ago. I wanted advice on creating smoky eyes for the wedding I am attending next month (which my daughter and husband are in, but I am not). I chose the MAC counter since it is usually frequented by the younger crowd, rather than the retired, Florida wintering age ladies at the Clinique and Estee Lauder counters. Where is the I-am-30-something, can-you-make-me-look-slightly-younger- than-my-age-but-still-appropriate counter? Um, that seems to be M.I.A.

I really do miss the days of being able to use the cheapest make-up. And wasn't Bonne Bell stuff the bomb? I used to use plain old Noxema (mmm, the smell of clean) to wash with, and whatever was advertised in Seventeen on my face. Now? Well, I discovered Origins shortly before I turned 30 and haven't been able to go back since. I recently tried to choose a less expensive option for facial cleansing - Oil of Olay something or other - in place of my beloved and extremely awesome Checks & Balances. was a big bomb. I gave it a couple of weeks, but the OoO just doesn't cut it for making my face feel clean. C&B makes my face feel clean but not all dried out. What do they put in it...crack (for your) pores? (Ha - GET IT?!) So I suck it up and pay $12 more for the good stuff. And I use it sparingly. Same with the Perfect World stuff, which I initially picked up to stave off the wrinkles and pock marks that were certain to invade my generally good skin once I turned the big 3-0. Keeps away free radicals! Smells good! Made with White Tea! I still faithfully use and love it. My mom gets me the big vat of skin guardian at Christmas, I make it last as long as humanly possible. My one thing I can use that's cheap is Cover Girl Lash Blast...and I completely agree with Bossy that the "best buy" mascara (which I saw in a 4 pack at Costco today...why not Lash Blast, dammit?) may be a good buy, but ain't a good mascara.

What the hell was my point? I guess the cost of cosmetics, and the tactics they use to suck you in. They make you dependent on them (hi Origins!) so that you can never, ever go back to Wet 'n Wild (honestly though, who would want to? Am I going to get gross Google searches now because I've used the phrase Wet 'n Wild? Nah, pervs probably can't spell that well.)

What are your favorite, tried-and-true products?

And Happy 4th! Hopefully I'll get a chance to read everyone's stuff when I get home tonight...

Thursday, July 3, 2008

In which I rant about teenagers and teenage pregnancy...

Has anyone else caught the show "Baby Borrowers"? Normally, I'm not a network reality TV kind of person, but the husband insisted I watch it. The basic premise is 5 teenage couples are given responsibilities of adulthood - house, job, and kid. They start with babies and move on to toddlers, pre-teens, teens, and senior citizens (!?). And, per usual, I have several issues with this show:

  • They put them up in way nice housing...I mean, the couples are in duplexes on a cul-de-sac, so they all live in the same area. Nice furniture, nice kitchens, brand new baby furniture and supplies, brand new vehicle, etc. Uh, hello...NBC? Do you reeeeeally think that teenage parents have this sh*t available? Let's make it more realistic. Put them in single wide trailers with garage sale furniture, 20 year old car (with a $1000 sound system, of course), dead end job.
  • One chick in particular is SUCH. AN. ANCHOR. She made the guy do everything, she went to work and bitched about the job the whole time. I'd have fired her lazy ass. Boyfriend? Wake the hell up, dude...dump her before she gets herself preggers.
  • Where are these kids coming from? What has changed in the mindset of the teenager? There is no damn way I was going to let myself get pregnant before the age of...I don't know...30??? I waited until I was done with grad school, done with my clinical internship, and had enough time in at my job to have a good amount of paid maternity leave.
  • Part of this animosity comes from the fact that I have a niece who had a child before I had my own. This girl is 12 years younger than me, not in college, doesn't look like she will ever attend college or any higher education whatsoever, and decides to have not just one baby, but TWO. And I don't think she's done. She wants a girl. I was utterly, unbelievably furious when I found out that she was having a baby. She was not raised this way, although my husband's opinion is that my sister had "too short a leash" on her and her brother growing up. I honestly don't know what the problem is, but I do know my sister is being an enabler right now. I know too many couples - educated, gainfully employed, who have to resort to medical science to have even one baby. Why is it that these guys can have one whenever the f**k they feel like it? And this girl's brother, seeing how angry I was when she was pregnant the first time? Actually said, "Don't worry, I won't be that stupid". Um, yeah. Dumbass was that stupid. His girlfriend popped out a kid last year. Honestly? I don't really want my kid to be around that kind of thinking.
  • In brighter news, my oldest nephew (he is 9 years younger than me) and his wife are going to have a baby. My brother is going to go totally overboard with this kid. He loves Molly to pieces...she brings him book after book to read to her when she sees him, which is cute. He's this burly truck driver looking guy, works construction, reading to this 3 year old.

*Sigh.* Namaste. I'm a smidge calmer now. Maybe I should take Baby Borrowers off the DVR season pass. I might have a coronary if I watch it again.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Yay! It's not the C word!

I just watched my new Deadliest Catch from Tuesday - Phil doesn't have cancer! A blood clot sure as hell isn't cause for celebration, but it's better than what everyone was thinking...

**relieved sigh**

Am I pathetic or what?!

Wordless Wednesday

Why can't I ever actually be wordless? This is my old house. It was our first home, purchased a little over 7 years ago. My child was brought here from the hospital...she took her first steps in it...obviously the place still holds sentimental value. It has been for sale for 10 months and the price has been dropped $37,000 since it first went on the market. WHY isn't anyone interested?!?!?
This house and the fact that we own two is the source of pretty much all my stress since fall. Constant second-guessing of "did we do the right thing by moving?", that sort of thinking. I'm sure at some point I'll post a rant about the whole thing. Anyway, here it is.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

True Confession Tuesday

So here we are at the second edition of True Confession Tuesday, in which I reveal a deep, dark secret about myself that may or may not make you throw up in your mouth a little bit. Today? That might happen for those of you with queasy tendencies. What could it possibly be, you may ask?
Picking zits is therapeutic for me.

My husband swears that I should've been a dermatologist, but I don't just pick anyone's zits, and I don't actually pick my own. My husband is usually the victim. I even bought one of these, which greatly aids in the picking process:
Rest assured, I wash my hands and use hot water and all that. My husband is the perfect specimen and his back is the perfect canvas. This isn't by any means an everyday occurrence, but it happens more when I'm stressed out for some reason. The process is soothing to me. I know I'm not alone in this; I used to work with a couple of girls that were the same way...only one of them tried to recruit her daughters to pick hers. I draw the line at that--I won't ask M to partake in this when she gets older.
And for those of you who think this is disgusting? My husband's college roommate used to pick at something way, WAY more repulsive than this. I mean, when he told me about it, it totally turned my stomach. It's so gross I can't even type it.
So feel free to leave your opinion - pick or no pick? Too gross for you, or are you a little intrigued?
Play along, if you're so inclined!