Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Good News/Bad News

Wednesday. Some people love it. Some dread it. Some are ambivalent. However you look at it: half-empty, half-full; half-way through the week or days away from the weekend--you can't avoid Wednesday. It shows up every week. It's that glass-half-empty/glass-half-full mentality that I take to Good News/Bad News. If you want to join me, write your own post, link back to me, and then come add yourself to the Linky at the bottom.

The Good News? We have begun potty training Wiggle Man.
The Bad News? See above.
The Good News? He's actually getting the hang of least his, um....Number Ones.
The Bad News? We've yet to conquer Number Two.

The Good News? I had a fab girls night out the other night.
The Bad News? I consumed way too many calories.
The Good News? I laughed many of them off.
The Bad News? I discovered the best ice cream/gelato joint there is. This is only bad for my waistline. It's good, very good, in every other way.

The Good News? I love baking soda. It's my magic cleaner.
The Bad News? I'm going to need a new box after all this potty training this week. (Baking soda is great for absorbing accidents on carpets, etc.)
The Good News? Baking soda is a crazy cheap cleaner.

The Good News? It's almost May.
The Bad News? I actually had to break down and put the heat back on today.

The Good News? Wiggle Man is developing a love for baseball, just like The Rev and me.
The Bad News? The Phillies are on the west coast, so Wiggle Man has been missing a lot of games.
More Bad News? The Rev and I are not getting to bed at anywhere near a decent hour.
Even More Bad News? The Phillies are playing like a team that has forgotten what sport it's supposed to be playing.
The Good News? I'd rather them slump in April than in September.

The Good News? I get to watch Glee this afternoon. Oh, naptime, thou art precious.
The Bad News? Uh....nope. Nothin'.


Friday, April 23, 2010

The Universe

It's conspiring against me. (Still no Special K Fruit Crisps. But that's not what this is about.)

Ever have one of those days? You're so on top of your game. If you're a mom, you are Super Mom. You rock.

Yeeeaaah...that was yesterday. I was fab, let me tell you. Wiggle Man has been a handful this week, but I maintained calm. I firmly, but calmly disciplined him consistently each and every time it was called for.

And I thought to myself, "Hey, self. You've got this. You could so handle another one."

PS--never, ever think that. The moment you do, your toddler and the rest of the universe will set out to prove you wrong.

(PPS--we're not preggers, or anything. I was just feeling like I could handle another one. Just putting that out there so no one gets unduly excited.)

So, case in point: today. Today I woke up, and like every other day, really needed to pee. (This is important. It's a theme.) Our master bath was, um....occupado, so I padded out to use the other bathroom. I saw Wiggle Man cuddled on the chair, and a surge of motherly affection filled my soul. I went to give him a kiss, and saw the massive puddle of pee underneath him. (See? The theme.)

So before I could even pee myself, (that is, use the toilet myself, not actually pee myself, but you get the point) I was cleaning up pee.

After Wiggles and I were clean and dressed, we headed out to run some errands. This was the point that he started making his requests: "Ball store! Ball store! Ball store! Animee crackers? Ball store! Box milkie! Box milkie! Juice Box Milkie!" And on and on. And on.

The car, too, joined in the fun. "Oil change required! BEEEEEP! Oil change required! BEEEEEP! Check charging system! BEEEP BEEEP BEEEEEEEEEP!" And on and on and on.

Through it all, I was ok. I calmly answered Wiggle Man's questions, and remained silent if he repeated a question over and over and over. We got to the store, and I had to pee. (The theme.) "Pancakes? Mama! Pancakes! Me run? Me run in store? Me run?" I was starting to wear thin, but thought, "If I can just make it to the bathroom, I'll be ok."

You may have seen where this was going, but the bathrooms were closed. Renovations. Of course.

I made the fastest possible trip through the store, all the while fielding questions from Small One with Many Questions. "Me treat? Me get red treat? Me Cheerios? Me treat? Toys? Toys, Mama?" And on and on and on.

The whining and begging continued all the way to the car, and out of the parking lot. At this point, I decided we were cutting our outing short, and making a stop to talk to the Rev. Someone needed a talking to from Daddy. And it certainly wasn't me.

The entire way back, I heard, "No Mama! No talk Dada! Mama! Talk Dada! See Dada? NOOOO! No see Dada!" and "Oil change required! BEEEEEEEEP! Check charging system! BEEEEEP! BEEEP BEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEP!"

A yellow light loomed ahead. While initially I thought I could make it, I changed my mind and decided to stop. Apparently too quickly, since my 64 oz jug of Crystal Light went flying out of the seat and onto the floor. Where it burst, and leaked everywhere.

Oh, and I still had to pee.

We finally made it to the church for the talking to, with one teensy problem. The Rev wasn't there. And I still had to pee.

"Mama! See Dada! Want see Dada! MAMA!" (Insert shrieking and screaming and crying. Mainly by Wiggle Man.)

I went to pull out of the church parking lot to head for home, where I could finally pee, and clean up the ever leaking ice tea now on the floor. This is the point at which every car in our small town came down the road at the same time, keeping me trapped in the parking lot with a full bladder, a soaked carpet, and a screaming toddler.

When I finally was able to pull out, I found myself behind a truck going 10 under the limit.

Eventually, I made it home. Wiggle Man was sent to his room. The car mats were hosed down. I got to pee. The Rev came home, talked to Wiggle Man, and took my car in to be checked. (Oh, how I love that man.) Wiggle Man gave me a hug, said he was sorry, and our day continued on in relative peace and harmony.

So, the morals of this story? 1) Just when you think you're on top of things, it only takes pee to throw you off, and 2) The next time you're driving down the road and see a harried mother behind the wheel of an SUV banging the steering wheel in frustration, spare a smile and a prayer. She may just feel the weight of the world pressing down on her teeny tiny bladder.


Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Good News/Bad News

**EDITED: Camilla pointed out that MckLinky was missing. It seems I was too busy toasting Mr. Scale to remember MckLinky. He's there now, so if you'd like to join the fun, write your own GN/BN post, link to me in your post, then come back over here and add yourself to MckLinky!**

Once again, Wednesday is upon us. It seems to happen every week, doesn't it? I mean, the whole Wednesday thing. Without fail, it pops up right in the middle of Tuesday and Thursday. Do you look at the week as half-way to the next weekend, or days away from your last weekend? (Frankly, our weekend here was such a blur of activity, I'm actively pining for this upcoming one.)

So, with that, here's a look at my week, through my Good News/Bad News lens:

Good News: Through the magic of DVR, I can watch Glee, even when I'm out Tuesday nights, as I often am.
Bad News: The last minute or so was cut off last night.
Good New: Hulu will save the day. Eventually.

Good News: Our concerts are done. The Rev had two concerts, as did I these past few days, so now we can relax for a bit.
Bad News: Our concerts are done--no more orchestra for me until they decide they need me again.

Good News: My fake nails are all still present and accounted for, even four days later.
Bad News: I find it harder to type with them.
Good News: Wiggle Man called them "stickers" the other night, which was hysterical.
Bad News: He wanted me to take them off. Also, he thinks they're brown. No, dearest, that's a french manicure. Very unbrown. More like pink and white.

Good News: I'm still drinking an ocean of Crystal Light daily.
Bad News: I pee. A lot. Still.
Good News: The, um...intestinal issues my mother-in-law warned me may ensue from that much artificial sweetener have yet to plague me.
Bad News: I live in dread of said issues. Not enough to actually drink that much plain water, but dread nonetheless.

Good News: I'm down 7 pounds in the past month or so since I weighed myself after a 2+ year avoidance of Mr. Scale.
Bad News: Umm, I think not. I'm pretty psyched to think I'm starting to get a handle on how my body handles calories, sodium and sugar. I'm lifting a jug of Crystal Light to you, Mr. Scale. Please keep being my friend.


Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Conspiracy Theory

I think George** might be at the bottom of this.

You see, once upon a time, yours truly worked in an office. We were a small, tight knit group, and fond of practical jokes. Well, when I noticed one of my co-workers made a daily trek to the candy stash to purchase a Butterfinger, an idea began to form in my twisted little brain. I enlisted the help of a friend, who kindly hid all the Butterfingers. Every day, just after George returned, disappointed, and sans Butterfinger, I would go downstairs and purchase one from the friend who had them hidden for me, and sit at my desk and proceed to eat my Butterfinger right in front of George.

This went on for longer than you might imagine.

Fast forward to now.

Commercials work on me. It's the running joke in our family. So when I saw a commercial for the new Special K Fruit Crisps, I was all "Yeeeeeeahhhh, I'm gettin' me some of those." And so, the next time I was out, I looked for them. No luck.

Not at Target. Not at Walmart. Not at any of the grocery stores.

So I thought, "Ok, they're obviously going like hot cakes. I must be shopping right before they get re-stocked every week." Or, "Oh, they were on sale this week. No wonder I can't find them." I looked for them different days of the week. Different times of day. Every time I'm in a store, I look for these Fruit Crisps.

And every. single. time. I'm met with a big empty space on the shelf where, according to the price tag underneath said blank spot the darn things should be. It's driving me nuts!

What I want to know is how George found me, and how he convinced every shop owner around to hide all the Fruit Crisps.

Payback. It's a...well, it's a not-so-nice thing.

**Name changed to protect the innocent

Monday, April 19, 2010

Promises, Promises

I know. I promised a hilarious story. I even had the post typed and scheduled to publish. But...I deleted it. It wasn't my hilarious story to tell. The hilarity ensued as a direct result of my own insecurity, but I wasn't the one looking silly at the end.

So, I thought and thought. And thought some more.

I remembered times when my insecurity caused rifts in relationships.

Times when my insecurity caused me to second guess my own ability to make decisions as a mother.

Times when my insecurity kept me from asking for help when I clearly needed it.

My insecurity made me try Nair on my arms the day of my best friend's wedding. And while my arms were nice and hairless for all the pictures, they were also slightly red and blotchy.

I wore plaid overalls in high school, in some odd attempt to fit in...who knows where.

I've said silly things, worn silly things, watched silly things...all because I was too afraid to be myself.

It's not the silly story I promised. But that's ok--I've got tons of silly stories to share.

Friday, April 16, 2010


Here it is. The deep (well, deepish) post I promised you. Get comfy.

I've been reading a book by Beth Moore called So Long, Insecurity. Now, if you know me in real life, and know me as a musician, that might seem weird to you. I mean, I play flute--we're the divas of the orchestra world. However, if you've known me for a long time--long enough, say, to remember my terribly awkward pre-teen and teen years--this will seem just about right. (And about time, maybe?)

Yup. I deal with insecurity all the time. It looks a little different on me now than it used to, but it's still there. But not for long. (Mwah ha ha ha....) But before I get to that, let me own my insecurity for what it was, and what it is now.

When I was a kid, I was, shall we say, oversensitive. Which, I can see now, was a result of my own insecurity. Even the kindest, well-intentioned critique could send me to tears. I thought it meant I wasn't good enough. I was terrified my friends would find better friends. I lived in horror of being made fun of.

Then I got to high school. Somewhere in there, my wavy hair became full-on curly. Only no one told me. So I kept brushing my hair out as normal. And it got bigger. And fluffier. It was bad, people. So there's me: frizzy hair, the inability to apply make-up properly, and oh--I thought I was fat. (I wasn't, but try convincing a teenager of that.)

I was so nervous talking to boys. My insecurity in this area had some sad consequences (I came off as a boy-hater) and occasionally, some hilarious consequences. (That's for another post. It can be your reward for making it all the way through this one.)

I spent an inordinate amount of time comparing myself to other girls. Was I pretty enough? Talented enough? Even in my youth group, I worried I wasn't even spiritual enough.

This isn't to say that there were people in my life who were necessarily making me feel this way. Perhaps in some areas you could trace my feelings back to a specific person or event, but more often it was my own imaginings and oversensitivity.

Eventually, I made it to college. It was like a fresh start for me--no one knew me, I didn't have to be that shy frizzhead anymore. I'd figured out how to do my hair. I was a little more talkative. On the outside, it probably looked like I was shedding many insecurities. In some ways, perhaps I was. And then. Oh then. Senior year.

Senior year had some serious challenges, but some pretty cool things happened, too. I lost about 30 pounds. I learned to straighten my hair. I still remember the first time I walked into a crowded room with my new, silky straight hair. It was our homecoming concert, and I walked into the hall to warm up with the rest of the wind ensemble. Heads actually turned. This had never happened to me. Ever. (Or ever since, incidentally!) That's a pretty powerful feeling.

No longer were boys telling me I was "special" but not someone they wanted to date. Suddenly, they were interested. And I loved it. I was outgoing, talkative, and seemingly confident. And in lots of ways, I really was. But I hadn't licked the whole insecurity thing. Not for good.

When I met the Rev, I felt like the most special woman in the world. He had (and still does have) a way of making me feel that way. Wiggle Man, too. There is nothing like hearing Wiggles should "Mama!" from across the room, and see him come charging over to bear hug me. You'd think that would be enough to make any woman feel secure.

And, of course, it goes a long way. But insecurity is a deep down problem for me. Being skinny masked it for a while. But when the weight came back, so did the pit in my stomach that I wasn't good enough. Smart enough. Pretty enough. Talented enough. (Funny how for me, all those things can be tied to a number on the scale, or on a tag on my jeans.)

I'm not saying there was anything wrong with me being skinny--I was healthier (physically), and that was good. What I'm saying is it hid my deeper emotional (and yes, spiritual) problem for awhile. The problem was tying up all my worth as a woman, and as a daughter of God in my external appearance.

Looking back, I can see insecurity plaguing me even when I seemed to have it all. I could blame it on being a musician--after all, we're bred to compare ourselves to others. But I found myself then, as I find myself now, comparing myself to others. If I don't like my shoes, I realise I'm checking out everyone's shoes to see how I rank. I shake my head at the silliness of it all, even as I type this.

That brings me to now. Slowly but surely, I'm getting back in shape. Inside and out. I'm hoping that as my outside gets smaller, my inside gets bigger this time. (In a good way, not the crazed egomaniac kind of way.) That I remember who I am in Christ, and allow Him to give me my security instead of basing it on my circumstances. For me, this is a process, a lesson learned and learning, and a lifelong journey.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Good News/Bad News

Well, it's Wednesday again, so it must be time for some Good News/Bad News. If you want to join me, simply write your own GN/BN post, link back here to me in it, then come and add your name to MckLinky.


The Good News? I'm getting better with spiders.
The Bad News? The fact that they're potentially poisonous forces me to calm down when one is near.
The Good News? Me being calm.
The Bad News? It's not always spiders. This afternoon it was a HUMONGOUS CENTIPEDE.
**Edited to add***
More Bad News? When the Rev came home and I asked him to hunt down and kill said humongous centipede, this was his response: "Oh yeah. I saw that thing the other day." WHAT????????

The Good News? My front garden is complete.
The Bad News? That leaves me no excuse to not tackle the weed-infested back garden.
The Good News? The giant bush by my bedroom window is, in fact, a WHITE LILAC! Woot!

The Good News? Wiggle Man talks more every day.
The Bad News? We're now regaled with phrases like, "I make fart," and "No, Mama! No change bum!"
The Good News? My kid is freakin' hysterical.

The Good News? It's concert weekend for the Rev and I--symphony for me, choral society for him.
The Bad News? It's all in one crazy weekend.
The Good News? The Rev has a solo in the Michael Jackson tribute piece, and I cannot wait to see him sing. Oh, and dance. Did I mention dance? (Mwah ha ha.)

The Good News? I heard a car door slam, and need the Rev to come home and hunt the centipede.
The Bad News? It was my neighbour. Think she'd come over and help?

Ok, folks, that's my life for now. I may be bustin' out a more serious, deep post in the next few days, so check back soon. It's percolating in my head, but it's just a matter of getting it down on paper screen.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

The Spider Wars

Steph asked a good question--are we able to play outside? Now, either she's terribly jealous of our amazing weather here in the valley, or she was wondering about what I've come to call The Spider Wars.

If you read my last post, you know I was a little shocked to find out about the whole black widow/brown recluse spider issue. When I posted about my neighbour's find (the honkin' black widow in her sandbox) on my facebook, many of my new valley friends and neighbours replied that they'd had similar experiences. This was, in fact, normal.

I was, and continue to be, a little freaked.

But, I'm powering forward. I'm being brave. But watchful.

To that end, I spend a considerable amount of time checking out brown recluse spiders (since I've now seen a black widow in real life.) Do me (and yourselves) a favour: DON'T google images of brown recluse bites. It's nasty. You can't unsee that.

But, at least now I know what the little suckers look like.

Knowledge is power, and all that. So, I was able to pretty positively identify the huge brown beasty spider that came running out from under my bag of mulch the other day as a brown recluse. Awesome.

The end result of all this is that I refuse to hide out in my house, since the darn things often find their way in, anyway. I will simply do what every other southern woman seems to do. I'll pull myself together, touch up the mascara, and declare, "With RAID as my witness, I'll never fear spiders again."

(I'm channeling my inner Scarlet, here, folks. While I'll never claim to be a true southern woman, I like to adopt some of their finer qualities. Think Steel Magnolias, and biscuits.)

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Good News/Bad News

It's still technically Wednesday. I have 66 minutes left. Just enough time to share my GN/BN for the week:

The Good News? I realised it was Wednesday in time to post this.
The Bad News? I haven't blogged since...oops.

The Good News? We just got MLB Extra Innings.
The Bad News? That's a LOT of baseball to watch.
The Good News? That's a LOT of baseball to watch.

The Good News? My front garden is almost ready.
The Bad News? The back yard is a weed jungle.
The Good News? That's not my fault--we didn't live here last spring. At least, that's my mantra.

The Good News? Wiggle Man got more candy than he can eat from The Easter Bunny, The Easter Egg Hunt, and his loving relatives.
The Bad News? I'm helping him eat it.
The Good News? Uh...see above.
The Bad News? He didn't get any Cream Eggs.

The Good News? We keep finding more and more wonderful things about living in this valley.
The Bad News? Black widow spiders also love living in this valley. Specifically, in our neighbour's sand box.
The Good News? Everyone says that we shouldn't worry about the Black Widows.
The Bad News? Because the Brown Recluse are the ones you really have to watch out for.
More Bad News? Rattlesnakes.

Well, there you go. With 57 minutes to spare. If you want to join in this week, just write your own GN/BN post, link back to me in your post, then come add your blog to MckLinky. Camilla's been writing some great posts for the last couple of weeks--check her out!