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July 2008
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September 2008

Not that kind of life

Matt and I got our very own Costco membership last weekend. No more pretending to be married to someone else at the Coscto counter so we only have to pay half and no more mooching off other people when they go. It's like we're growing up before our very eyes.

Excuse me while I extract Sam from my filing box.

While Matt was exploring the electronics aisle, the clothes aisle and "just lookin' around babe" I was checking out the books and eavesdropping.

So this couple with a sullen looking teenage daughter is browsing the books. The dad, a nice enough seeming fellow, starts looking at the calendar set I .... excuse me as I saved Sam from falling down the step into our bedroom  family room. So I'm studying this whole SET: a "Mom's" calendar, a desk planner AND twomagnetic lists for your fridge, one for groceries and one for I forget what, reminders maybe.

Pretty cool, right? Except that it's covered in cartoonish hippos and that's not really my gig. Otherwise I'd be all over that.

Well Mr. Nice Enough digs it too. In fact, he wants his wife to want it. So, so bad. He keeps trying to sell it to her.

"Look honey, it comes with magnetic lists," he holds it up again for her to see. She gives him a withering look.

"And look, you can track all the details for everyone in the family with these colored ..."

She finally cuts him off by snapping, loudly, "Listen. I don't have that kind of life."

I couldn't help it. I started laughing out loud. And since I'd already exposed myself as a shameless eavesdropper I added, "No one does. This just lets us give off the illusion. That's worth $29.99. I mean, if you like hippos."

Excuse me, Sam has unearthed and is eating part of my rubber stamp collection.

Priorities - his and hers

Had a little leak under the sink.

"Don't run the dishwasher," Matt says after looking into the problem. This is after he cooked a HUGE batch of meatballs leaving chunks of raw meat all over the place. "I tried to be careful," he says. And he did. It's better than before Baby Chi Chi but Matt clearly doesn't share my Raw Meat Phobia (surely there's a word for that).

Matt tells me fixing it requires driving into town.

Okay, I say.

He looks at me like it's the last thing he wants to do. But he'll go if, you know, I "have my heart set on running the dishwasher tonight."

"Sure, babe, tomorrow I'll pick up the parts."

Tomorrow comes. No parts. But he'll go back to town if, you know ... Tomorrow it is.

Meanwhile he starts wondering why there are empty containers in the fridge. There's no room to keep beers cold.

"What's with all the empty containers?"

"I'm storing them there until the dishwasher is fixed."

"In the fridge?"


"Why not just throw them away?"

"For the Earth. You have to clean them out before you recycle them and I'm not hand washing all of that so I'm storing them in the fridge unless, you know, you have your heart set on extra fridge space in which case ...."

I am writing this to the hum of the dishwasher.


When in doubt, procrastinate

I'm almost done with my work tasks for the day. Just one more call to make. I assess the situation, Sam seems content. I dial. Sam's busy playing with Farmer John and the chicken. Client answers. We start talking. I jot a few notes. Glance at Sam. Still good. I start to take a few more notes when the fussing starts. I quickly hand over my keys which he's usually not allowed to play with. This delights him long enough for me to almost finish my interview. Almost. He was happy until he hit the panic button on my key fob. Suddenly everything goes nuts. The car is blinking and honking in the driveway, the dog is barking  and Sam is completely freaked out and screaming. I have to finish this now that I've started so I quiet Sam the best way I know how in an instant: nursing. So while I'm nursing Sam I drag Lucy outside to let her bark while I fumble for the keys to turn off the panic alarm without loosing my train of thought on the phone. God only knows what the guy on the other line thought.

As I checked that task off my list and called it a day I learned that there is merit in putting some things off until tomorrow.

Borris in a box

I splurged on myself yesterday. All because of Borris. I came out of the parking garage at Bridgeport Village pushing Sam's fully loaded stroller and carrying him on my hip aka baby shelf. I was hurrying to meet Sarah and her boys at the play structure.

I started to rush by the Seacret kiosk I've ignored so many other times. He lures me in with a free sample packet of lotion. I am my mother's daughter after all and never met a free sample I didn't like.

I pop the sample in the top compartment of the stroller, between the hand sanitizer sample and scrunched up index cards. I'm off. But wait. Borris takes my hand, looks deep into my eyes and says, "You no have time for yourself, no?" Sam giggles and cocks his head. Borris continues by asking if he could just show me something very quickly. Uh yeah as long as you keep massaging my hand like that, talk away.

"Natalee (said in super sexy voice) you have such nice nails, yes?" Mmmmhmmm.

"But see, here, these lines are no good. You have to take care of yourself, no?" Mmmmhmmm.

"Okay, Natalee, I show you," so he files and buffs away then says, "Are you ready to be amazed?" Mmmmmhmmmm. Also I'm already amazed that Sam has been still and quiet this whole time.

He polishes my nail with the "magic cube, see, like silk Nataleeeee." Mmmmhmmm.

Voila. I have one nail that looks awesome and nine that look like crap. It looks like I just got a manicure on my ring finger. I want more. But I really have to go. I'm prepared to pass up the amazing product, Boris demonstration and all. Until he says, "Today we have special, two for one, you deserve it, no?"

Yes. Yes I do. Also I'm a sucker. But I'm typing this with ten pretty nails and felt pretty good about it until I found the link online to show you the goods and saw it wasn't so much a two for one special as a matter of him charging double the amount and then giving me two boxes, for legal reasons, I suppose.

But, hey, whatever. It's worth it to feel like Nataleee. Too bad I couldn't get a little bit of Borris in the box.

Must get organized

I cringe when I hear Matt rummaging through one of our many junk miscellaneous item drawers and cabinets. It reminds me that I am behind on my life's mission to Organize Everything.

Last night I heard him rifling through the cabinet in the kitchen containing various parts of containers. The sour cream, yogurt and salsa containers with the warped lids, you have them too, right?

"Are you looking for the 9x13 pan?"
"Yes." I think I detect a hint of irritation in his voice.

"It's in the stroller."

"Of course it is," he goes looking for the stroller.

"It's on the front porch," I call after him. Must get organized, I think to myself.

Kindness of Strangers

Our morning my morning (because I guess I shouldn't presume to speak for Sam) started off kind of on the crappy side. First of all, it was morning. Secondly Sam's sleep was off (I think he reads my blog and saw that I told you we had nap times figured out and was like naaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhh keep dreaming - wait, you have to sleep to dream...) and he's been all cranky and farty and then he goes and falls off the bed. He's okay. But I'm still trying to get that look of panic in his eyes out of my mind. Our bed, FYI, is on the ground-- first apartment in college style-- so it wasn't a long fall, but still ... He shot me a very accusing look as he sobbed in my arms. Good Morning, Sunshine.

So I'm trying to be all zen about things and not let my moods control my outcome blah, blah, blah and then I remember I have to go water a friend's plants and check on her cat early this morning. So I load up Sam and Lucy Baby in the car (all in pjs) and head over there. I trip over the hose, get totally soaked and curse myself for ever having taken this on. I deserve a coffee drink. But have no cash. Behold the power of loose change. I head to the drivethru, it's backed up. Lucy's entertaining Sam so we're good. I decide to let a guy in ahead of me. He looked like he might be in a hurry and well, we're still in our pjs and the day is off course anyway so what's another few minutes? We exchange a little wave and nod and I marvel at my good fortune that I haven't cleaned out my car any of the 37 times I've thought of it this week because I had plenty of change and all my mail I've been stashing on the passenger seat. Matt, by the way, loves that little habit of mine.

As I'm reading my magazine, the coffee stand girl tells me the guy in the other lane has paid for my coffee.

And just like that my day is good again. There's a lot to be said for the whole "it's better to give than to receive" thing but frankly, it was pretty fun to have the whole reciprocal random acts of kindness experience and see the ripple effect of that. Especially in the form of a free 16 ounce soy, sugar free white chocolate mocha. Iced.

Olympics: the ultimate in reality tv

I was aware Olympics Season was approaching but when I hopped on my Google Machine this morning I saw the cute little icon reminding me today was the big day.

Which is kind of a problem for me because I had this idea the other day to use the Olympics to kick off my Operation Self Health plan. It was just an idea. I figured I'd plan more specifically when it got closer to Opening Ceremonies time. Tonight is sooner than I'd intended but what the hell. No time like the present to focus on wellness. I really can't have my kid eating kale, tofu, kelp and brewer's yeast while I do nothing different nutritionally. Can you say hypocrite? Sam, by the way eats those things without batting an eye while I try not to make faces as I feed them to him.

The thing about the Olympics is that for me it's always been something other people watch. Sure, if the Olympics are on TV when I walk into the room I might watch for a few minutes but I've never been really into it.

Also, in the past it's been kind of annoying that there is nothing else to watch on television during  Olympic Season. Scandals aside, it just hasn't been my thing.

Until now. For some reason, I got to thinking about how amazing it is for these athletes to have their hard work and training lead them to this opportunity of representing their countries and competing in the Olympics.

It's hard not to be inspired when you think about how much passion, sacrifice and energy these people (and their people) put into making this dream a reality. I think the difference between people who succeed at reaching their goals and those who don't is the getting up every day and going after it. Again and again until your belief in yourself and your hard work yield the desired results. Hoping and wishing didn't get these athletes to Beijing, and it won't get my book(s) published or lower my body mass index. Perseverance, however, will.

All that is to say, thinking about these Olympic athletes who have lives, families and jobs of their own, makes me realize that I have more time than I've been willing to admit to dedicate to maintaining one of my most blessed gifts - my health.

Using the Olympics as a source of inspiration, I will have thought of a specific goal or two to focus on during Olympic season. Anyone care to join me?

Now, this is reality TV, people.