Friday, May 29, 2009

How can I write so much about so little?

I realized today that I am approaching 700 posts on this blog...and that let me to a bit of a "Holy Shit" moment. That is a whole lot of writing. Much of it about almost nothing at all:-) To be honest, I am not sure how school will affect my blogging this fall, so I am kind of approaching a blog-crossroads in the near term. However, I am not going to worry about that today. Maybe I will deal with that on Wednesday when I write the actual 700th post. Or maybe not.

Headed to the beach right after looks like we will have another OK-but-not-great weekend. The forecast is calling for a lot of sun, but temperatures in the low-mid 60's. Not exactly beach weather, but certainly nice enough to enjoy ourselves. (Side note: I am weirdly nervous and fidgety and a touch queasy...hopefully I will be over it by Monday. I will likely cry.)

Since several of you have asked me privately, I will give you a wedding update. I think we have a date in September, but it is still not set in stone. I will have to know by the beginning of July so that I can have new invitation printed and mailed in time. The vendors have all said that they can either do any Saturday in September, or they can recommend someone else if they are booked. In summary, the date change is not really phasing me a whole lot right now...and hopefully it will not. Really, I only care about who can and can't make it. The rest of the planning is not that important.

Dress should be ready next week:-) None of it is fitted too finely that my gaining a couple of pounds over the summer should matter, so I am not really worried about that.

And just in case you need to feel a little bit jealous: Munchkin's last day of school was yesterday, so she is officially on summer vacation. Ahh, those were the days!

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Who knew I could like the office this much?

OK...I seem to have gotten through the bulk of this work stuff, which will allow me to spend a lovely day g-chatting, surfing the Internet, and planting ideas in the boys heads for my fabulous going-away present (is lobbying for this bad form? Probably...)

Other than that, I am ready for another weekend...two days of work is plenty for me to be ready:-). And, this, of course, is a big one since Munchkin is not coming back with us (not entirely true...she is coming back on Sunday, but riding down with her brother on Monday morning when he gets here...for all intents and purposes, she is moving down there this weekend.) I still have some anxiety over this, both because I am worried about how it will work out and because I will just plain miss her all the time. But overall, I am feeling pretty comfortable about it. For now.

I was happy to hear that he managed to pick up a little bit of work while he will be down there. I mentioned before that he is essentially taking all of his vacation time to do this for her, and that his wife is taking two weeks off from work, so I know that it was a financial sacrifice for both of them...even though they were glad to do it. But I guess he called a couple of mechanics down there to explain that he would be there, was certified in whatever mechanics get certified in, and could help out part time if they needed it.

One of them responded right away that June was always incredibly busy for him as people come back to the island after the winter and need whatever vehicles they left there fixed...and that he could really use some help, especially on the weekend in the middle of his visit. So, it looks like he will be able to work for at least 20-25 hours and offset some of the burden. I hadn't even thought of anything like that, but I was glad to hear that he worked it out.

Moving right along to more enjoyable bachelorette party is coming up, but I don't know exactly when, nor do I know what we are doing. Smoking Hot Roommate is in charge, and she is keeping the details a secret (well, a secret to me, but not anyone else.) Originally I had wanted it to be somewhere that Munchkin could come for the whole thing, but I have a feeling that I will not really be in a kind of state to be a responsible example, so that got nixed pretty quickly. My guess is we will hang out here the first night and do something a little more low-key so she can come, and then we will head somewhere else and drink our tits off after that:-P

Should we start guessing?

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

I'm not dead...I promise

Work nonsense again keeping me busy. No blog tomorrow, and only this half-assed one today. Mea culpa

Weekend was awesome...chillier than I'd like, but lots of hanging on the beach in sweats and stocking caps and bare feet buried in the sand:-)

The Boy rules. Even more than usual.

Munchkin is officially moving this weekend and I am kinda terrified, and kinda totally cool with it.

I felt sad and uncomfortable watching Jon and Kate last night. Anyone else?

Back Thursday, maybe...Friday, definitely.

Friday, May 22, 2009

Grade Seven? File it away

I called my doctor yesterday to tell her about my weight issues, and she called me back in pretty short order with a completely non-panicked response that made me feel better. Her advice, based on an intensive study of medical journals, and years of training and expensive schooling was: "Gain weight". She has set a target for me of 99 pounds (45 kilos for my foreign readers:-P). I will keep your posted on my progress.

Essentially, I am back on a modified version of the diet that she gave me a couple of years ago that I affectionately call "The Ice Cream Diet". Unfortunately, there are no explicit instructions to eat ice cream this time around...just foods that are high in calories and nutrients. Nothing crazy, just a concerted effort to get enough protein and other good stuff: like I am not supposed to eat a salad unless it has some kind of meat on it :-). Ice cream is acceptable, but not necessarily as encouraged as it was last time...

Chicken fingers last night, which only partially meets the criteria. The chicken is good, but the french fries are not (deep fried carbs are bad on any diet, as it turns out). So, I was a bad dieter on day one, but I promise to get better:-).

Speaking of chicken fingers, Munchkin is incredibly excited for summer, and I don't blame her. She has three days of school left next week, and all of them are basically half days...and since she is done with her year-end exams, she is, for all intents and purposes, an eight grader. We are packing up a lot of her stuff to bring to the beach today, and will take another big load of it next weekend, at which point I am leaving her when I come home:-(

It is still not too late to talk me out of this...

The weather is not gonna be great, but I am still excited to head to the beach for the long weekend. Summer needs to be kicked off, damnit!!!

Have a good one, everyone:-)

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Not this again...

I'm happy that Kris Allen won Idol last night, for all of the reasons that I have mentioned previously. Despite the coolness bonus that Adam gets for knowing So Midwestern, he just never really did it for me. Black finger nail polish? What year is it anyway?

Enough of that, though...I have a more pressing problem. I put on a skirt that I haven't worn in a while yesterday, and noticed that it was really big on me. I guess I was partially aware of having maybe lost a little weight, but I was surprised at how loose it was. So, I broke out the scale when I got out of the shower this morning to just do a little check-in on my always-troublesome weight.

94 pounds.

I definitely didn't realize I was that thin all of a sudden. It is only five or six pounds less than my normal weight for the last year and a half or so...but that makes a lot of difference at my size. And I am not real sure what the past, it has been stress related, but I don't really feel overly stressed lately. There is some shit going on, and changes coming up related to marriage and school and Munchkin moving out for the summer...but none of it has made me lose any sleep, really.

So, I guess I gotta start worrying about this again. Bollocks.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Getting ready

As I mentioned yesterday, Munchkin's date on Friday turned into a triple date with two of her friends and two of his. I got a somewhat bizarre message from one of the girl's mother's during the day asking if I could just come over and hang out for a bit while the girls were getting ready. Since we stayed over on Thursday night, I knew I would be home earlier than expected on Friday, so I agreed.

The eventual plan was for the girls to meet the boys at the movie theater at 7:30. The preparation plan was for the girls to get together at 6:00 to get ready...which means bringing a whole bunch of clothes over to one girl's house and then trying different things on and re-fixing each other's hair for an hour and a half.

We got there at about 6:15, and both girls and their mothers were there. Very quickly, I realized why I was settle disputes between mothers and daughters. First of all, Munchkin very quickly decided on a white polo, a long hippie skirt and a big leather belt that she borrowed from me. Perfectly acceptable:-)

After that, there was a comic parade of arguments. A shirt cut way too low...another cut way too high. Jeans that hung too low (given a shirt that hung too high). A skirt cut WAY too high (it would have been a cute short skirt two years ago...when she was six inches shorter:-)). And then the make-up...

Generally, I felt like the Moms were right...girls that age are still trying to figure out how to dress themselves to look cute without looking too suggestive. And most of their errors were on the suggestive side. They are new to having boobs and hips and they have all grown a lot recently and just haven't quite gotten used to dressing their new bodies. Or, apparently, putting on eye shadow;-)

There were also a couple of things that I thought were cute and not slutty, I did my best to play peacemaker. The girls tend to listen to me more than they listen to their Moms; I am, after all, the coolest Mom in the seventh grade;-).

I also agreed to go and meet them at the theater after the movie to bring them home...because, again, I am way cooler than being picked up by your Mom. The Boy was kinda beat from a long week, so he was cool with a quiet dinner and parent duty...I am sure that he was also really interested in giggly teenage girl ramblings about boys. While both of her friends were pretty smitten (at least with the idea of being smitten), Munchkin was a little less excited about the new boy after the date than she was before. Maybe more on that later...

After that, it was a pretty quiet weekend. Soccer game Saturday, some bumming around, went out to watch the horsies on Saturday (yea, girl horse!!!) and then went out with some friends pretty late. Slept late Sunday, then just kinda hung out. Pretty nice weekend:-)

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Out Still

So, my two day trips turned into one overnight trip on Thursday and Friday...and a day trip tomorrow. Which means I am still going to be out of the office and not blogging.

I do have two things, though...

There is nothing funnier than three teenage girls preparing for (what turned into) a triple date. Well, there is nothing funnier than two of them arguing with their mothers over what is appropriate and what is not. Full story later...

Second, is it bad of me to take gender pride in the girl horse beating all the boys? Because I do...

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Back for a day

Good morning peeps! I hope you didn't miss me too much! Or get turned off by my way-overly-serious Mother's Day post;-)

Work has been a total bitch the last two days, and will be for the next two. I was out of the house at 7:00 each of the last two days and didn't get home until after 8:00...and now I have two day trips tomorrow and Friday what will make those days even longer. Boo hoo, woe is me;-) (I know...I suppose I can't openly acknowledge being overpaid and then bitch about the work, huh?)

Today, however, is just a regular day at the office writing up notes from the last two days...combined with a likely long lunch to soften the blow of the rest of the week. Now this, I can handle!

In even more important news, it is so close to almost summertime that it almost hurts! We threw around the idea of heading to the beach this weekend, but it looks like the weather is going to make that a bad idea. Next weekend is Memorial Day, so we will likely head down unless the weather is going to be really, really awful. And that, to me, is really the beginning of the season.

Another sign that summer is very nearly upon us...Munchkin has 10 days of school left...yikes. She is moving to the beach pretty much right after that, her brother is coming out on Monday the 1st, and she starts work the following week. We will see if she likes working as much in reality as she does conceptually:-)

Speaking of...she seems to have found herself in another interesting social situation driven by the basic fact that boys love her. About a week and a half ago, she met a boy at a friend's house...friend of the girl's brother, I think. She seemed to like him well enough, and he obviously liked her because he called late last week to ask her out (which, again, means something like pizza, or maybe a movie).

Which leaves her in a bit of a bind...she clearly likes this boy or else she wouldn't have wanted to say yes...but she is also somewhat torn about Frenchie, who she very obviously cares a lot about. Never mind that this is way too complicated for a girl that is 14... Fortunately, she was busy last weekend, so she had a built in excuse to not give the new boy an answer immediately.

So, she beat herself up over it for a few days (note: she didn't actually ask for my advice until Saturday;-)). When she finally did ask, I told her that I thought she should go out with the new boy if she wanted to. And that she should be totally honest with Frenchie about it, as well. I just basically think it is a bad idea for a girl that young to be avoiding social opportunities in the name of a "relationship" that is hindered by as much time hers is with the French boy. At the same time, there is nothing to be gained by keeping secrets, either.

I didn't listen to her conversation with Frenchie, but I think that is what she did. She said that he was clearly kind of upset about it, but he didn't get mad or anything, and told her that she should go ahead and have a good time. So, he said all of the right things, even if he was maybe a little mad about it. Not sure what she has written to or heard from him since then...

And now she has a date on Friday night with the new boy (a date which will be likely over with or close to it before I get home...which means that The Boy is in charge of making sure she doesn't leave the house dressed like a hoochie...:-P)). I am still not sure she feels 100% OK about it, but I think she did the right thing.

That, I suppose, is about it. Super, super busy week at work...impending summer...and social demands on Munchkin...

Oh...and Idol. Seriously, the emperor has no clothes...Adam SUCKS! His butchered One last night, turning it into a whiny, indulgent, screechy piece of sap. By the end of Crying, they were fighting over themselves to suck up to him more than the previous judge, and all I could think was "My ears hurt, and I would have rather he shut up and just let the backup singer sing..."

Didn't see Danny, and only saw Kris' second song, which was phenomenal. I am voting for him (not really, but if I were a voter, I would vote for him.)

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Mother's Day

I am going to be out pretty much all week, so my posting will be limited to what I can find time for when I am home every night. I wouldn't expect much...just a warning:-)

Mother's Day, like some other things, tends to make me think. It makes me think about my own Mother and our relationship. Mostly, it makes me think of all the ways that I wish our relationship had been different. She was a pretty shitty mother, and I was no prize as a daughter...and the combination just wasn't real good.

As I think back, I don't really know when or where it went wrong. I guess that she was just too un-responsive during the first 12 or so years of my life...she was always there, but we never had much of a mother-daughter relationship. Then, she quit drinking, got married and had Munchkin, and tried to be more of an actual mothers. But then I never really gave her much of a chance to. Could be that I had just grown to like the autonomy. Could be that I never really trusted her. Could be that I just resented how absent she had been. Whatever the reason, I don't think I ever let her try to be a good mother.

And in her defense, she was much better at it the second time around. If I had let her be as good a mother to me during my teenage years as she was to Munchkin at the same time...well, we would have had a much better relationship. Not sure that was even possible, and then by the time I was about 16 we had just lost the ability to really communicate. And by 18, the shit really hit the fan.

If her husband (Munchkin's father) hadn't died 18 months later, I am not sure when or if we would have started speaking again. And who knows how things would have turned out from there? But we did reconcile, and then things were as good as they ever got. Being 1,500 miles apart and only seeing each other a couple of weeks a year definitely helped...and to be really honest, we communicated somewhat through Munchkin (who I talked to much more than I talked to my Mother).

I would never say that I had a "good" or "healthy" relationship with my Mother, but it was definitely better by the time she died. We had one massive blowout in about June of 2005 (timeline: she told me she was dying in May of 2005, Munchkin moved out here in August, she died that fall), but we had gotten to the point where we could communicate as adults and value the time we had together.

So Mother's Day always makes me reflect...on how things were, how much I wish they were better, and how fortunate I was that they were even as good as they were. It is always interesting for me to note how differently Munchkin and I remember our Mom. And, while we are at it, how differently Big Sis and Smoking Hot Roommate remember their Mom. they is what it is. I still think about my Mom, but less all the time. And I think better things. Which is probably a good thing.

If nothing else, she got her second daughter really right:-)

[That second daughter, by the way, bought me a beautiful vase full of flowers and wrote me a Mother's Day card that made me cry:-)]

Friday, May 08, 2009

Follow-up and Counter-Intuitive Financial Advice

A couple things that I should probably clear up...before anyone reports me to child services:-)

First, I totally agree that watching a soccer game is not a real good reason to miss school. To be really honest, though, she doesn't need a reason to miss school...if she woke up this morning and said "I don't feel like going today," I'd have let her stay home. I am sure that sounds weird, but she loves school, and she never expresses any desire to skip out. If she and her friend/sometimes sister/sometimes mom/former roommate want to take an afternoon to themselves, I see no reason to stop them. I could probably make the argument that maintaining this very important relationship in her life is more important than a couple activities.

Second, as Laurwilk pointed out, Munchkin's school is different than what you or I remember as school. She is there from 8-5 every day, so "leaving early" meant sometime around 2:30. They have academic classes all morning, and then they have other stuff after, music, sports, theater, stuff like that. Becky brought up a good point about being on a team and the importance of committing to the team...but her lacrosse practice is much more "gym class" than it is organized sport. Everyone has to pick at least one sport at a time to play, but they don't actually play many games against other schools...mostly it is just their phys ed.

Kristin wondered why random people can pull her out of They can't. The school has a pretty strict policy on letting kids come and go during the day (and even at the end of the day until they are a certain age). Smoking Hot Roommate, along with Big Sis, Papa Bear and The Boy, are all cleared with the school to pick her up, though...anyone other than that, and they need direct authorization from me. And yes, it is necessary to have others who can get her.

Incidentally, Munchkin and SHR made tentative plans to go to Rome for the next game, right up until their team's heartbreaking loss...ahh well, maybe next year;-)


Total change of subject...I met with my financial planner yesterday. I hadn't seen him in a while, and have to get some things in order before school, and getting married, etc. Also, have I ever mentioned that he is incredibly hot? Sorry...that is not really important to the story...

Anyway, the subject of Munchkin's summer work came up, and he had some interesting advice. I had sort of heard it before, but he explained it a little better: that she shouldn't be saving for college. Because of the way they figure financial aid in college, any money that she saves on her own will reduce the non-loan financial aid that she will get. And, with no parents to figure into the income calculation, she can expect to get a lot. Basically, she will be penalized for anything she saves.

His advice was to keep the money out of her name so that she will have it and be able to use it (either to spend, or to reduce the amount she needs to borrow) but that it is less likely to be factored into her financial aid calculations. Sounds maybe a little dishonest to me...but I haven't decided what to do.


Finally, a very happy Mother's Day to all of my mom-readers...and to all of my son and daughter-readers, too:-) I feel like the day should stir more emotions in me than it does, but whatever. SHR and Big Sis will have their annual breakfast together (not sure I ever mentioned that...but ever since their mother died, they have an annual date for breakfast at the same place, which I think is really cute).

And then dinner with The Boy's mom:-) Because she is awesome:-)

Thursday, May 07, 2009

Parenting Judgements

Interesting discussion over at Cate's Show my Face the last couple of days about good and bad parenting and the rights of others to make judgements on it. Let's ignore that most of the debate centers around bringing kids to

[For the record, I don't think that my bringing Munchkin to bars is the same as the example she is citing...those kids are MUCH younger, and out later, and in a much different kind of place than I ever take Munchkin to. I just don't want anyone to think that I disagree with all of the people over there who think this was wrong on account of me doing the same thing.]

Kind of on the same subject of responsible parenting, I have this gem for you:

Message received at about 3:30 yesterday from Smoking Hot Roommate (it had been left an hour before): "Hey, I'm going to get Munchkin out of school early so we can go watch the soccer game. Call me if it's an issue." Of course, an hour later, it would have been a little too late for me to have an issue with

First off, I had to have Laurwilk clear up a few things for me. Like...this was a soccer game on TV, not one they were going to in person (that was my first question). Fortunately, she is apparently up on the international soccer schedule and could tell me that Chelsea (which, we all know, is officially Munchkin's favorite team) had a big game against Barcelona yesterday.

So, what do we think...totally appropriate reason to skip out of school? I'd say so... (sarcasm aside, she missed an art class and lacrosse practice.)

I actually had a much longer post written about how this is the sort of thing that people sometimes feel entitled to make judgements on...but I don't feel like posting it. I am not sure that I can get my thoughts together coherently, and I am not sure that I have settled on my main thesis for the argument yet. Maybe tomorrow if someone incites me;-)

By the way, my sources tell me that the refereeing was exceedingly bad and cost Chelsea the game. Tragic...

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

THIS....Is American Idol

OK...we are down to the final four on Idol and I have written very little about this season, despite obviously watching it.

I will say it again...I don't get Adam, even though he will likely win if the judges have anything to say about it. He never misses a note and everything is really polished...but he has a crappy voice!!! It is thin, and too high-pitched and he screeches way too much. He also prances and poses way too much. I know I have made this comparison before, but he really strikes me as the runner-up to be lead singer of The Darkness. And really, what is his niche? What kind of music is he gonna make that people will buy?

That said, he does know So Midwestern, so that has to count for something:-)

I think Chris will sell the most records. He has a much more clear commercial style than the others...the Jack Johnson/John Mayer school of Dave Matthews Derivatives. Cute enough, nice enough voice.

I love Allison! She is only 17 and it shows...she is not quite as polished as the others and not quite as clear on who she is just yet. But man can she sing! She has a voice like a 40 year-old chain smoking whiskey drinker! She does need a stylist, though;-) dunno. I always feel like he is trying a little too hard to sound like he has a raspy voice? And he is always so awkward moving around the stage...stop dancing, Danny! At his best he has a cool Joe Cocker thing going on...but at his worst he has a really cheesy Joe Cocker impression going on;-)

Anyway, I think that Allison will go home tonight, Chris will go next week and Adam and Danny will be the finalists. I think Adam will probably win, but I wouldn't be totally shocked if Danny did. I know I am not the only non-fan of Adams, and he does generate some pretty visceral reactions...Danny is less offensive and has a more compelling personal story, too.

But...the other two have a better chance of still being around in 10 years...

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Tuesday Shoe Discussion

Inspired by Jenny's shoe shopping yesterday....can we discuss Gladiator style shoes?

I am really torn. I think there are some heels that are absolutely gorgeous, and I have seen some flat sandals that I like, too...but I also find that they often look really cheap and kinda cheesy. And I am not sure that I have figured out the rules to differentiate the two.

Please discuss. And while you are at it, talk about how adorable golf shoes are:-D

Monday, May 04, 2009

Weekend Fun

Good morning, everyone...hope you had a nice weekend:-) I know I certainly did.

Saturday morning actually turned out to be a pretty good day for golf! It was cloudy most of the time, but it was actually pretty warm and very comfortable. And I feel like I did pretty good for the first time out...I am not sure how big a fan I am of the full 18 holes, it takes kind of a long time:-). Also, they should serve Bloody Mary's on the course.

I am a little bit "Sportsed Out" at the moment, to be honest. Friday night was the Bruins and Red Sox. Saturday was the horse race, the Celtics (against the Bulls...conflicted!) and more Red Sox. Sunday was the Bruins again (although I didn't really watch that) and the Red Sox one more time. I really enjoy being out with people to watch games that I don't care about (everyone is festive and excited and really casual and it just tends to be a good time) but I definitely have my limits.

I probably had like one beer too many on Friday, so I was a little hungover for golf on Saturday. And then after golfing, I had my first mint julep at about 4:30 (one a year is plenty for, so by midnight I was pretty well spent. Or maybe I was just anxious to get home because Munchkin was at a friend's house for the night...hee hee.

Waking up on Sunday morning with absolutely nothing to do and nowhere to be was really nice. I think we were probably awake before 9:00, but I don't think we got out of bed before 11:00...and for a lot of that time we weren't even having sex!!! The only reason I really got out of bed was to go and meet Munchkin and Smoking Hot Roommate at the end of their race.

Munchkin did awesome! I don't know the exact time, but they finished in less time than SHR thought that it would take them, and she wasn't totally dead at the end of it. I believe that they have races scheduled for a lot of Saturdays and Sundays this spring...

I guess that is about it...I was busy all weekend, but it was all fun stuff. I got to see a whole lot of friends that I hadn't seen in a while, and got lots and lots of Boy-time, as well.

I'll give it an A- (it would have been an A if I won the lottery on Friday;-))

Friday, May 01, 2009

An Agendaless Weekend

Acknowledging that every Mother-Daughter relationship is different, I seem to have gotten a lot of support for my "Mother of the Bride" theory on wedding stress. I may need to add an addendum on how a really relaxed bride can mitigate the effects...but I will continue to work on that.

That brings us to the weekend...which is going to be my first totally relaxing one in kind of a while. Last weekend was the visit from Munchkin's French Boy, the weekend before was Chicago, the weekend before that The Boy's sister was visiting, so it has been a while since I had a weekend with very little on the agenda.

So what is on that agenda? So far, golf and horses...

As long as the weather holds up, and it is not looking promising, Munchkin, Smoking Hot Roommate, Big Sis and I are going to open the golf season tomorrow. Unfortunately, that is looking kind of unlikely at the moment, although we could play on Sunday afternoon if tomorrow doesn't work out.

Also, the Kentucky Derby is tomorrow, and The Boy (and some others) wants to go out somewhere to have a few beers and watch it. Not sure whether I will wear a stupid hat;-). I imagine we will probably hang with his friends for most of the night...actually haven't seen them much lately, so I kinda miss them:-). There is also a Bruins game tonight and a Celtics game tomorrow and always Red Sox games and I imagine I will end up watching some of those at some point, as well.

Munchkin and Smoking Hot Roommate (and Papa Bear's golden retriever:-)) are running in a 5K road race on Sunday, which is super adorable:-). It's Munchkin's first race, so I think she is maybe a little nervous about it, but SHR is going to run with her the whole time, so she should be fine. I feel like it is a long way (over 3 miles), but she runs so much for soccer and basketball and lacrosse and other sports that I think she will be ok. Those long legs will help her:-)

I think that is about it. Other than that, I will just be doing my best to avoid the Swine Flu...have a great weekend! Happy May!