Friday, November 30, 2007 I'm Putting You On Notice!

When it comes to giving my children gifts, I strive to keep said gifts a surprise. "Do not open until Christmas", is my motto. When I order something online, I expect it to be delivered in a plain brown, non-distinguishable package; for a couple of reasons. For one, if I happen to be absent from my home when the package is delivered and left on my doorstep, I do not want the world to know what is inside the box. It might be something they'd like to have, and lets face it; that's all some people need to justify taking it (Hey! They aren't home. I want it. Must be for me! Thanks sucker.) And secondly, what else I don't want to happen, is exactly what did happen today. The doorbell rang and I, along with my Girl-Child whose self imposed job it is to answer the door (and this is the most fun thing ever for her to find out who is on the other side of the door. Honest. She doesn't need gifts. She just needs someone to go outside every once in a while and ring the bell. Her own personal heaven.) find our friendly neighborhood UPS man on the other side, grinning. On the ground directly in front of him is the doll cradle I'd ordered for the Girl-Child presently at my side. How did I know it was the cradle? Because it is in its original packaging; no effort to hide it whatsoever. A giant picture of it is slapped on the front of the box. Hard to miss. This prompted me to open my palm, place it on my daughter's face, shove her thustly and slam the door. "Thanks", I called to Mr. UPS. "Just leave it there"! I looked down at my Girl-Child for any indication that she'd actually seen the box. But all she did was look back at me with an expression that can only be described as "WTF, Mom? What's with all the face pushing?". Or, "Are you high? Don't make me open up a can".

Two words for those who ship: Brown Wrapper.

Taking Things Literally

I must blog this quick exchange between my oldest son and myself from this morning. While watching the local news, a blurb about Toys For Tots was covered; and my oldest son was horrified.

Boy-Child#1: (all color drained from his face) Is that for real?
Tootsie: (confused) Uh, yeah, why?
Boy-Child#1: Really? You can do that?
Tootsie: Of course. Do you want too?
Boy-Child#1: NO! You wouldn't do that, would you?
Tootsie: Is there some kind of misunderstanding here?
Boy-Child#1: That just doesn't seem right. You give them a child and they give you a toy?
Tootsie: (breaks into hysterical laughter) No Honey, see....

A Boy and His Hair

My oldest son has long hair (see proof here ) and is ready for a change. Not short, but a new style. He's very excited (as excited as an eleven year old boy can be about hair) about this:

Joe Jonas (center) has the look my boy wants to imitate. I'm on the fence about it and trying not to fall off. Is it just me, or is it a piece-y mullet? A party in the front and simultaneous party in the back kinda mullet? I'm all for risky hair, especially when you're a kid. Since once one becomes an adult it is often difficult to pull it off if you've got a job that says; conservative, please. But a mullet? I have this fear that he'll hate it once the deed is done. And I'll try to keep the rain of hair from sticking to his tears as I shave it all off onto the kitchen floor.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

This Will Hurt Me More Than it Hurts You

I thought that random acts of violence were on the way out here in the Farklepants household. Fighting amongst siblings still takes place but actual physical combat hasn't been a problem since the summertime cabin fever episode. I attributed the newfound lack of fisticuffs to my oldest son becoming a bit more mature and the younger starting to develop similar interests. I hate punishing my kids. I always feel like a giant cup of crap soup immediately after. Sure I feel justified at the moment punishment is called for, but when I see tears well up in their eyes or I know that their current grounding will keep them from doing something they've really had their heart set on...I dunno. It's one of those situations that makes it to the "hard part about being a parent" side of the pro/con list. But, punishment is necessary sometimes; like, oh, say when the oldest son kicks the youngest son in the stomach. And that's not a "what if" scenario. That just happened. Twenty minutes ago. And that kind of thing demands appropriate sentencing. And, less importantly, what a lame ass thing to do with Christmas less than a month away.

Even though I know that Boy-Child#1 is more upset because he's been punished rather than remorseful for the kung-fu move he dealt Boy-Child#2; I still wanna hug him when all is said and done. And I have to apply stealth-like ninja moves on myself to keep from doing so.

**this entry was written last evening and posted this morning. This did not happen before breakfast today. Boy-Child#1 isn't that awful to kick his younger brother's ass before younger brother has had his Fruit Loops**

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Show and Tell

I remember when I was in elementary school. Yes I do, shut up. And there were a small number of events where your parents actually came to your classroom and/or school; aside from arrival and dismissal. Those functions included but were not limited too and in no particular order: Open House, Back to School Night, and The Christmas Program. That was it. Parents? In the classroom? Volunteering? What? Grandparents Day? Huh? Mother's Day, Father's Day, Sweetheart Dance, Talent Show, Father/Son Movie Night, Fall Carnival Fund raiser, Spring Carnival Fund raiser...and....? It seems that our generation of offspring have unleashed some kind of mass-parent-involvement trend. I'm not complaining. It's fun and I enjoy it. There is always something going on. Did I say always? Always. I get to be a PTA kind of mom without actually being an active member of the PTA. So, where am I going with this? My youngest son is VIP of his classroom this week. Everyday the teacher and his classmates take a few moments to make him feel speschuuul. Monday he shared his family scrapbook. Tuesday was show and tell about an item he brought from home. Today he (I) brought in a special treat for his class (Milano cookies because I rule). Tomorrow he gets to bring and read his favorite story. So tonight, I guess, he needs to figure out what that story is! But Friday. Oh, Friday. Friday I get to come to his class and interview him with my trusty list of scripted questions provided by Mrs. Second-Grade. She's also instructed me to "be prepared to share a story about your VIP".

So, not only am I (a parent) attending a school related function, but I'm also expected to perform. Oy. The pressure. Telling a story about my child should be easy, right? I mean, how hard can that be? I've got so many to choose from. Except that the stories that are fondly remembered by me, Mom, would probably humiliate my son to no end IN FRONT OF HIS ENTIRE CLASS. And kids can be mean and relentless, so the last thing I want to do is arm them with an arsenal of embarrassing anecdotes to torment my son with for the remainder of his academic career.

I'm also expected to describe what makes my son special to me. That's easy. Um. He's my son. And he's special to me because he came out of my vagina. All the people who've passed through my vagina are very special to me. What I want to ask his teacher is, "what makes him so special to you"? Do you think that might make my son just drop dead on the spot if I actually said that? Probably. Better come up with something else.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Fashion For Tots

My daughter is currently rocking these pink Bearpaws. I must say, that she's the cutest thing ever! The boots just enhance her uber-cuteness.

Warm Fuzzies and Steaming Piles of Poo

Making lists on blogs seems to be the thing to do lately. And not to be one to miss jumping on a bandwagon; I mean, I sooo want to fit in! Like me dammit! I thought I'd list my favorite and least favorite things about the holidays. I'll start on a positive note!

Top 10 Things I LOVE About the Holidays:
1. Christmas music in every store. It even makes grocery shopping a pleasant experience.
2. Choosing and decorating the Christmas tree.
3. Shopping. And lots of it!
4. Mall Santas.
5. Holiday parties. Any excuse for a new dress!
6. All night gift wrapping extravaganzas!
7. Taking walks at night to enjoy the lights on everyone's house.
8. A Charlie Brown Christmas
9. Quality family time
10. Baking for Santa on Christmas Eve and the Christmas morning frenzy!

Top 10 Things That Make Me Want to Poop In My Pants:
1. Charity phone solicitors ~ I'll never give to someone who invades my phone line so stop calling me and take me off your list. And if you're going to ask me to open my wallet at least practice saying my name correctly before you call me. duh.
2. Gigantic inflatable lawn ornaments =obnoxious
3. The Salvation Army bell ringer ~ you're annoying. Stop it already.
4. Family drama ~ I won't name names
5. Weight gain and bloating from over indulgence ~ my bad.
6. People who apply for instant credit with a line a mile long behind them at the check out counter. Please take your additional 10% off and shove it up your ass.
7. Christmas decorations and/or music in stores prior to Halloween ~ too eager.
8. My credit card statement ~ ouch.
9. Fruit cake ~ no one likes these
10. January ~ most boring month ever especially now that the Super Bowl is in February. I mean, we don't even have THAT to look forward too anymore. Just a dreary, boring ass month is all.

So, what about you? Likes? Dislikes? Discuss. Or list.

Monday, November 26, 2007

My Youth Mocking Me From a Picture Frame

I had to take my mother on an errand today. She no longer drives and I'm an awesome daughter and chauffeur. While I waited for her to put the finishing touches on her makeup, I wandered around her bedroom admiring the many framed pictures she has set about. The one on her nightstand caught my breath in my throat. It was me looking back at me. A youthful me. A junior year of high school me. Surprisingly, I don't look all that much different features-wise. And sadly, my hair hasn't changed all that much. It was just a little on the bigger side then (hey, it was the eighties) and slightly, um, darker. The eye makeup was heavier too, then. But the skin was smoother. Fuller. Tighter. No laugh lines. No creases. No crows feet. And there wasn't anything going on with my neck. I've been highly aware of my neck lately. It seems to suddenly have lines and creases that weren't there just days ago. I swear this aging thing happens over night sometimes. I have the beginnings of a disaster that I WILL pay to have corrected sometime in the future (or at some point start wearing turtle necks year round). That disaster is a turkey waddle. I come from a long line of waddlers. My mom. My grandmother. My great aunt. All waddlers. And since I'm a carbon copy of my mother; same bone structure, same frame, same jawline, same. Same. Same. Except her eyes are blue and I'm a couple inches taller. Agh! Looks like I'm getting the same wiggly piece of flesh that connects my chin to my neck. Does history HAVE to keep repeating itself? Can't it skip a generation? Haven't I been good to my skin? What's with the betrayal? Et tu Brute?

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Behold the Christmas Card Pic

*photo by Dorothy Z.*

With Thanksgiving behind us it's time to prepare for Christmas! Instead of trotting my tots down to Sears for their annual family picture, and pay a sitting fee per child, and the package price only to end up with a washed out photo (two weeks later) taken by a photographer whose experience is questionable; I decided to let my lil sis do it. Cuz she's got talent. And there it is! My rock star, my super model, and my heart breaker. And for those of you who are familiar with the show "Weeds" on Showtime, yes, that is the Agrestic fountain in the background.

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Post Thanksgiving Workout

This is how my family burns post holiday calories...

Twister! Yeah, baby yeah!

And here, I sat on my husband's head to nail that "left foot red"...

It was the only way.

The Food is Finally Gone

*photo by Dorothy Z. Turkey by Tootsie**
Our Thanksgiving dinner was divine despite inadvertently turning the oven off for an hour with the turkey needing hours to go before completion. See, my sis brought these marvelous stuffed mushrooms as an appetizer and I decided to let them share oven space with the turkey to heat them up. As it turns out, when I removed the mushrooms from the oven, I, um, turned it off. Habit. You know. About an hour or so later when my timer let me know that it was time to check the bird to see how he was coming along, I approached the stove. Something was just "not right". I could sense that things weren't as they should be. It should be very warm, or hot, in the vicinity of the stove and I should be getting a contact high off the smell of roasting turkey stuffed with dressing. These things were not happening. I looked at the dials on the stove and all of them are in the "off" position. WTF? I opened the oven and it was tepid in there. Crap! Enjoy your mushrooms folks. Dinner will be delayed by an hour. I don't know if it was the foul up (bad pun), but it was probably the juiciest turkey that's ever come out of my kitchen.

It is now Saturday night and I'm officially over all things Thanksgiving. Food-wise, that is. I spent the pre-dawn hours hitting the Black Friday sales with my two bestest buds; my sisters. I'm proud of 'em! They did it. They're teenagers and a part of me totally thought they'd wake up at 3am and say "screw this, that hag is on her own". Then sleep till noon. We all put a good dent in our Christmas shopping lists and were eating breakfast by 9:30am. Not bad considering we spent two hours standing in line at Kohl's just to pay for our stuff. Seriously, we aren't going back there next year. It was one of those situations where we wanted to just throw our shit in a pile and leave, but we'd already been standing in line too long to abandon ship. I hate those dilemmas. We made our move to Target afterwards and were in and out of there with considerably more purchases, in 45 minutes. We're totally going to Target next year.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Let Them Eat Pie!

The holiday season is my favorite time of year. I love spending time with family. I love shopping for gifts. I love gift-giving, more so than the receiving. And I LOVE throwing my diet out the window for a couple of days here and there and be able to justify it. (Leftover pumpkin pie for breakfast! Pumpkin is a fruit, yeah?) One thing I do dread, though, and I dread it because it happens almost every year, is when certain adult family members take this together time opportunity to school my children on what and how much they should eat (we aren't spending Thanksgiving with these particular family members so my dread is premature at this point, but it will happen by Christmas you betcha!). I KNOW what my kids like to eat and what they'll tolerate. Mealtime can be a struggle in our house but I feel that if I can get a stalk of broccoli, a cauliflower florette, a chicken breast, and a wheat roll into them for dinner, then I'm Mom of the Year in my book! Breakfast is big with my kids. They love scrambled eggs and wheat toast. They're hip to breakfast meats. My Girl-Child is having a love affair with peaches currently. They drink plenty of water and milk, and only one out of the three of them even likes soda which is a special treat for him because I rarely let him drink it. My point is that they eat a pretty healthy diet even if it is very limited and lacking in any variety. So what? They're healthy and not obese. Again. Mom of the Year.

One thing that irks the ever lovin' hell out of me is when another adult will a) question the limited variety and portions on my children's holiday dinner plates, and b) insist that they try a vegetable casserole or three and slop some on their plate, and c) tell them that they won't get dessert if they don't, and d) criticize ME through THEM. (i.e. "Your Mommy isn't going to let you have dessert if you don't eat some more, IS SHE???" ...when they can clearly see that it is I who fixed their plates initially, so yeah, obviously it's okay with me) These people do not live in my house nor are they even aware of what my children's daily diet consists of. If my children want to pick at their turkey and scarf down some rolls and still eat their holiday desserts, then that is my call. I've been a mom for 11 years. I'm a veteran. I'm not new to this whole parenting thang. I've got some Mom-cred. So please. It's a holiday. It's special. And it's rare. Any person (of the non-meddlesome kind) would rationalize that my children do not live on a strict diet of pie and candy.

So this year, when it happens (because it WILL), and I hear the phrase "Your Mommy isn't going to let you have dessert if you don't eat some more, IS SHE???" (while they look at me for my reaction in their favor), I'm determined to come back with a witty (read: sarcastic) remark like, "Oh sweetie! Did I give you turkey? I must be out of my head. I meant to give you an entire pie with a mountain of whipped cream...just like EVERY NIGHT AT HOME ON A CONSISTENT BASIS. Whatever was I thinking. Turkey. Feh! Get these children a pie, toot-sweet!"

Yeesh. Now I've gotta get my tukus downstairs. There's cooking to be done and a turkey to tend too. I've got to stuff and butter up that bastard so he'll be in the oven on time! I'm also going to sautee my veggies in MORE butter before adding them to the stuffing this year. If I don't clog at least one artery before I go to bed tonight, it just ain't Thanksgiving! Happy Thanksgiving!!!

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Six Days

Six days is officially the maximum amount of time my children can spend together under one roof while school is out and their usual activities curtailed to accommodate the holiday week, before they start trying to kill each other. Here in our little neck of the woods we get the entire week off for Thanksgiving, or "Fall Break", if you will. Now before you go gettin' all jealous and whatnot, don't. Just try to picture dear sweet Tootsie hollering "STOP IT!!" in her hoarse voice, every 15 minutes before she burst into flames. *Poof*

Shave and a Haircut Two Bits

Boy-Child#2 was in desperate need of a haircut. He was becoming quite unkempt. After my last of many visits as a customer in a particular local hair salon that, according to the name of their establishment, specialize in Kidz (yes, the "z" is intentional) hair; I vowed never to return as I chocked back tears whilst I gazed upon my son's butchered do. Seriously, I could have done a better job myself in my own kitchen. With dull scissors. With my right hand tied behind my back. And blindfolded. It's been that bad. I'm embarrassed to admit that I've returned there as many times as I have; only to mutter to myself each time "I don't know why I keep coming back here". Maybe it's that I'm hopeful that they'll live up to their title of "we do Kidz hair". They used to be super. Great big thumbs up! But apparently it was just the particular woman that was super and she no longer is employed there. And also apparently they've replaced her with someone whose job interview I imagine went something like this:

Place That Does Kidz Hair: What is your experience?
Hairdresser That Sucks: None.
Place That Does Kidz Hair: What talent do you possess to cut a child's hair?
Hairdresser That Sucks: None.
Place That Does Kidz Hair: Are you any good?
Hairdresser That Sucks: No.
Place That Does Kidz Hair: You're hired! You start today. Here are some scissors and a child. Godspeed.

So, with my child looking frumpy, and my unwillingness to let him be their guinea pig even one more time; I remembered that my own mother used to trot my bro down to the good ol' fashioned barber shop. And as luck would have it, in an "in your face" kinda way, there is one located just next door to place that I'll never set foot in again. I admit, there wasn't the little old man that I expected who may have offered to also give my seven year old son a close shave with a straight edge and shine his shoes when all was said and done. Instead, the gentleman resembled a gangsta and was covered in tattoos, but damn skippy if he didn't do a great job! Boyz got skilllzzz.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

The Way to a Woman's Heart is Through Furniture

When Mr. Farklepants suggested last evening that we should forgo gift giving to each other this year, I was all like "Totally. Way to go. Mui Bueno. I concur". Because we are so the type of people who just buy what we want when we need (want) it. And this makes gift giving quite difficult and kind of a needless expense; considering we've usually already got whatever it is that we want. I was premature in my kudos because he wasn't done yet. The words that fell out of his mouth after the first part of his statement made me want to strip off my clothes and roll around on him; that is, after I picked my jaw up off the floor. It went something like this:

Mr. Farklepants: I think we should forgo gift giving to each other this year.
Tootsie: (gives thumbs up gesture) I totally agree. I'm all over that.
Mr. Farklepants: And we should just buy a new couch instead.
Tootsie: THUD.----->onomatopoeia
Mr. Farklepants: It doesn't really make for a great gift though.
Tootsie: Are you new?

Because that is the best gift ever! And lets pretend that I haven't been dropping exactly that hint for the last, oh, four years now. The last time we purchased a new piece of furniture was when we bought the couch we will be replacing...eight years and three shades of taupe lighter ago.

We are now reacquainted with our honeymoon phase. He just racked up 50 points on the sexy meter with one sentence. The stud.

Monday, November 19, 2007

All The Crap They Can't Part With

There should be a rehab center for men who have an addiction to keeping all and any old electronic equipment. It can be obsolete. Keep it, might make a comeback. We may no longer subscribe to the service that keeps it in working order. Keep it, we may change our minds. It doesn't even have to work. Keep it, I may need one of its parts for something else. Beta machines make great paper weights, so I've heard. Outdated computer monitors are the bomb for collecting dust; because that MUST be what we're keeping them (yes, them, as in plural) for since that is all they are doing. I don't know what part of the male human brain this phenomenon resides in but I can tell you this: Women do not posses it. Women come equipped with a particular cerebral lobe that causes our head to explode every time an old piece of equipment doesn't make it into the garbage. My lobe is on it's last leg. And Christmas is coming. Someone please save me.

If I Can't Taste the Turkey Someone is Gonna Get Hurt!

I think I'm getting a cold. I'm eating Sudafed like Tic-Tacs trying to mask my symptoms. Actually, to alleviate my face. My colds always start in my cheekbones and eyeballs. I'm highly aware of my upper face at the moment. If I don't nip it in its stupid bud right now, I will be eating Thanksgiving dinner with my taste buds impaired. And that has got to be the cruelest joke, ever.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

New Twist on Five Second Rule

I witnessed a woman changing her daughter's diaper in the parking lot at Starbucks. When I say "parking lot" I mean the child was laying on the pavement while her mother changed her diaper. No blanket, no changing pad. No buffer whatsoever. I'm a mom and I can totally relate that a diaper may take you by surprise with its contents, and in inconvenient locations. But, I...I'm...uh..I uhhmmm...I'm not even sure what to say about this. I'm speechless. Or blogless. I'm without words it shocked me that much. Didn't she at least have something in her car that could be used? Like, oh I dunno, the backseat?!?

Getting Your Halls Decked

*An aside: I read my own blog entry title as "Getting Your BALLS Decked". I'm still giggling -sometimes I have the sense of humor of a twelve year old boy*
I was flipping through a local magazine today and was struck by the number of ads for businesses that perform services such as running your errands for you, storing your holiday paraphernalia, and those that come out and decorate your house for you. I guess if you're a working parent then paying someone to run bothersome yet necessary errands for you is a plus, but since I don't have a "job" job, really other than being a mother and a wife then running errands is part of my job description (along with bathing certain members of the family and making sure everyone is stocked up on clean undergarments to name a few). Storing your holiday house crap is what garages and attics are for, in my humble opinion.

The service that jumped out at me the most was the home decorating. I don't know about you but navigating our way through the garage and dusting off the boxes containing mangled and often non-operative strings of Christmas lights, climbing ladders, and the certain marital spat about where the twinkling mechanical lawn ornaments should reside are all part of our post Thanksgiving holiday tradition. I even enjoy the several trips to Do It Center each time it's discovered that one or another decoration isn't in working order. Even the kids get in on the action, full of enthusiasm, as they witness their father scaling the stucco like some suburban cat burglar, trying to hang the lights in proper order so that the plug lands on the side of the house where the outlet is located. Good times, really. I usually have to keep my suggestions to myself because apparently the sound of my voice is enough to cause him to lose his kung-foo grip and curl his lips back, but hey! It's a tradition dammit! The squeals of glee our children emit when night falls and the fruits of our labor there to behold (after plugging in the longest extension cord known to suburban man) are worth the trips both to the home improvement store and up the wobbly ladder; and the marital discord. We all hold hands. We ooh and ahh. I take a picture. It's magical. Christmas comes to our home and it's a moment and a memory for our children to take with them on their journey through life.

How does paying someone to have the house holiday-a-fide for you become a fond memory? Is it that the homeowners are too busy to partake in their own traditions? Is their house too gargantuan that it literally takes a crew to slap some lights on it and turn the mutha out? Or is it that Mr. Man is too a-scared to climb the ladder? Or is it simply a status thing to be able to say "Why yes, Bif, we have people who do that for us, you know". Seems rather boring to me.

Friday, November 16, 2007

With That Kind of Behavior I'm Afraid I'm Going to Have to Blog You

What ever happened to common courtesy? Let me backtrack for a moment...I ran out of my L'Oreal Wrinkle De-Crease (night) bone fide miracle cream a couple of weeks ago. I made the trip to Walmart at that time to replace it only to find it out of stock. So I bought L'Oreal Advanced RevitaLift (night) instead and it did wicked awful things to my face (i.e. break out in little wannabe zits that never fully materialize but jack up your fresh, polished look nonetheless). I stopped using it around last Sunday and my face has since ended its complete wigging. Back to yesterday...Walmart had it in stock and I chose to pay for it in the gardening department because there's never anyone in there and since that is where they keep mass quantities of their Christmas decor (you'll be happy to know that they are prepared to sell one plastic Santa to every family in my valley; there are that many. Walmart, for all your plastic Santa needs because nothing says Merry Christmas like a lawn full of plastic ornaments), so I figured it'd be a'iiight if I bought my obvious non-gardening essential in that department.

While I stood there, corralling my Girl-Child and Boy-Child#2 from touching all the shiny things, there was a woman purchasing a plant with a mystery price tag. There were clearly no others like it and, subsequently, no reference for its cost. The dear sweet elderly male cashier finally chose a magic number, she agreed to it; problem solved, which was a relief because she was starting to get rather impatient. It was at this point that the second register opened and the new cashier waved the woman in front of me over. Except that there was another female customer in line in front of the woman ahead of me (confused yet?). But the woman who was next after plant lady told her to g'head since she was already next and the plant dilemma solved. So the lady ahead of me moves over to the available checkout and I follow her because I'm a sheep. This is when the cashier, the sweet elderly man, closed his register. After what happened next, I'm sure that it was something he regretted immediately. This woman unleashed her acid tongue on this little old man (who's probably working at Walmart to begin with because his social security isn't something he can actually live on, OR, because of what retirement can do to the male psyche...I've read the studies).

She scolded and chided him in a "how dare you" tone with her volume turned up to MAX. Specks of spittle flew! The phrases "have you no decency" and "I don't care if you're on overtime", and "it's the principle of the thing", and "that's not fair!"...and what was that? Why, did she just stomp her foot? Well turn me upside down and paint me blue, she did! She's having an absolute tantrum! To the man's credit, his face remained stoic. He didn't acknowledge her drama; he just rang her up and sent her on her self-entitled way. It was one of those moments, however, that I wished I had the wherewithal to say "Look. Is it really necessary to speak to him like that?". But after eying her purchase of several large cans of sweet potatoes, I feared she might hurl one or more in my direction considering her disposition, and I wasn't really prepared to take one in the face for the team.

I understand her frustration. Really I do. But I just don't believe that customer service industry folks deserve such a public de-pantsing. Humiliating someone because you're inconvenienced doesn't solve anything. It just makes you a bitch.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Open Letter to Mr. Two Items

Dear Mr. Two Items,

As I stood in the regular check out line in the grocery store today, I could hear you sighing behind me. Perhaps you were trying to let me know that you'd appreciate it if I'd let you cut ahead of me. Or maybe you're just really sad and felt that sighing was the best way to illustrate this. In the past, Mr. Two Items, I would regularly let other "less than 10 item" folks such as yourself go right on ahead. It was the least I could do, courtesy-wise, considering my basket and my fellow mass product shopping cohort's carts, were keeping those like you from a quick in and out. Then it occurred to me one day, Mr. Two Items, that it is people like you who are being rather discourteous to our already congested lanes. You have a special place just for you, Mr. Two Items. It's called the "Ten Items or Less" lane and it's usually checkout stand #1. Because you're #1 and you are speschuuul. The next time you're standing behind me, sighing and tapping your foot; and if I had eyes in the back of my head I could probably see that you are rolling yours at me, I will, in the most pleasant way possible, direct you to your appropriate aisle. Because I'm courteous like that.

I hope you enjoy your AAA batteries and your Sprite. Good afternoon.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Close Encounters of the Dimwitted Kind

This morning, while squeezing in a brisk walk for cardio, I nearly mangled my face; twice. Trekking up an extremely cruel hill, my head was in my closet trying to figure out which shirt was feminine enough to work with my new H&M corduroy blazer (and my jeans and boots) that I am planning on wearing to a screening of The Godfather at Warner Brothers tonight. I'm meeting my husband's boss for the first time and I wanna look sharp. It was right around this moment that I came to just in time to avoid being stabbed in the eye by a very long stick hanging out of the back of a maintenance truck parked in a driveway. I was this close to losing my left eye. After a quick peak around to make sure no one was watching, I got my adrenaline under control and continued walking.

Then on the downhill stretch, a bus whizzed by doing mock 3. I shut my eyes (my first mistake) to avoid the tornado of debris making a beeline for my face, however, I kept walking (my second mistake). When I determined that it was safe to open them again, I did, and was face to face with a sign post that had I walked into it at the rate that I was going, I probably would have broken my nose. Or at the very least, ended up with a bruise square between my eyes. It's one thing to injure or bruise oneself in area's of the body that can be covered up by casual clothing. It's another thing entirely when one has to disguise their boo-boos by wearing a ski mask, burka, or bee-keepers hat. None of which are in style at the moment.

I'm happy to say that I made it home injury free.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Bedtime Exchange

Tootsie: Where's your jammies?
Girl-Child: Right here!
Tootsie: Do you need to go potty first?
Girl-Child: Nope! (so confident!)
Tootsie: Are you sure?
Girl-Child: Nope! (she's not sure how to answer a "sure" question yet)
Tootsie: Okay.
Girl-Child gets into bed after our coordinated "I'll fluff the pillows while you pull back the blankets and tuck me in" gold medal winning routine.
Tootsie: Who do you want to sleep with tonight? (eyes ridiculous amount of stuffed animals and characters who reside at the end of Girl-Child's bed). She giggles.
Tootsie: Nemo? (she shakes her head)
Tootsie: Spongebob? No, Patrick?, wait, Tigger...(really this goes on for a while)
Girl-Child: How 'bout Meeemo (this means Nemo and you'll note, was my first suggestion)
Tootsie: I love you.
Girl-Child: I love you too!
Ritual of kisses, hugs, tucking, kissing of the Nemo, and more hugs and kisses.
Tootsie: don't need to go potty?
Girl-Child: I said no already (clearly exasperated)
Turn out light, leave room, log onto computer and start reading favorite sites.
Girl-Child: Mommy?
Tootsie: Yes, Baby? (wait for it...)
Girl-Child: I need-a-go pee-pee.


Monday, November 12, 2007

It Totally Sucks So Don't Bother

I finally got around to taking the rugrats out to see "Bee Movie". Frankly, I didn't want to go opening weekend because I live in Everybody-Has-A-Kid-Land, and the theater would be nuts. Secondly, I've had no real desire to see this movie judging by the trailers they've been shoving down our throats for the last, what is it now?, six months? They really marketed the hell out of this thing. It just didn't appear to be all that funny. I should always trust my gut. It rarely lets me down. This movie sucked outrageous amounts of ass. How can someone like Jerry Seinfeld; the former reigning king of prime time comedy, be THAT much not funny? The jokes were corny and so predictable I could see them coming before the scene had even been set. So I thought, hey, it's a cartoon so I'll judge the reaction from the children. Silence. Lots of silence. I heard a few collective laughs from the wee ones in the audience, but really, I heard more rumblings and fits being pitched from sheer boredom. And crying. My own girl-child even begged to go home three quarters of the way through. And she'll sit through anything.

Not only did I sit there and suffer through only the third movie in my lifetime that I actually considered walking out of (and perhaps demand my money back for this colossal joke they've pulled on me), but I had to do it sitting next to a woman who I think stood outside in the sun on purpose just to get her scalp sweaty enough for me to smell through the whole movie. Of course, I wouldn't have HAD to sit next to her if it weren't for the pimply faced manager who asked us to move one seat down to accommodate the sold out show to late comers. Listen. I like the aisle seat when I'm out with the kids. I like to be able to make a clean getaway just in case. I get there early to plan for easy access. I'm a little anal like that, but that's me. My family and I took up the first four seats...aisle to four seats in. No gap. It was the family that came after us and climbed over us that chose to leave a buffer seat between us, perhaps trying to avoid my youngest son's cooties. I dig. Why didn't I argue with the young manager and point out the obvious that our moving down one seat just brings the one extra seat from the middle of the row to the aisle? Because I'm stupid and cave to anyone wearing a uniform who barks orders at me. My bad.

I give this movie 2 thumbs down. I'd give it more but I only have two.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Where Be the Cavalli?

Today was a lunch and shopping trip with a dear old friend. Old as in length of friendship...she's in her mid-thirties. Not so old. After scarfing down half of a crab cake sandwich at The Cheesecake Factory (because really,their portions are ridiculous! The waiter wanted to know if we had room for dessert? Are you kidding? Who does? As a matter of fact if I'm not careful and hiccup, I'll be leaving a little of what I already partially digested behind on the table)...we strutted our stuff over to the H&M store. I was very excited. I'd never been and had heard the most awesomest things! It's HUGE. There is a LOT of stuff. There were a LOT of people! Holy moly. Tres crowded, indeed. I loathe crowds but contained my claustrophobia induced irritation because, hey, there were clothes! This store is great if you're a working woman (as in leave the house to go to work everyday and don't have to wear a uniform). Not so much for those of us who spend our day running errands and cleaning children. Sweaters seem to be H&M's thing. Pants for tall women appeared to be non-existent. For those who love to mix and match; this is YOUR store! You can pair nearly everything in there. Their prices are really low...everything under $100...tons for $20 and $40.

I was really excited about the Roberto Cavalli collection that hit the stores on Friday and was disappointed to see NONE. Of course, then I remembered that the shit was gone in 60 seconds after its debut. I did stock up on some bitchen-assed scarves, a sweater, gloves, and a black corduroy blazer that is going to totally rule with my jeans and boots!

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Please See the Cashier You Loser Product Junkie

Have you happened into a drug store lately searching for your particular brand of whatever facial cream it is you desire? Only to come across a laminated card instructing you to make that humiliating trek to the cashier to retrieve the item? Now, many beauty products line the shelves of the secure area behind the check out counter along with your Sudafed and cigarettes. Apparently there is a female criminal element out there keeping their wrinkle prevention on the down-low. I 'spose. I'm surprised that the manufacturers haven't installed LoJack in the packaging. If there is one positive thing I can say about Walmart, it's this: At least they keep their in-store shelves stocked with a plethora of skin care items and make feeding my addiction accessible.

Friday, November 9, 2007

Things I Suck Up In My Vacuum

Sometimes a renegade item will make its way into my vacuum during a carpet sweeping, coffee induced, frenzy. Today it was a Cinderella Barbie glass slipper. The irony of this is not lost on me.

Thursday, November 8, 2007

Vintage Thirty is Evolving

In case you don't know this about me, I'm totally ADD when it comes to my creativity. I started this particular blog (I do have many...see my profile) to document my fashion and beauty tips; and other related tid-bits pertaining to and thereof. Wow. Did that ever bore the hell out of me super quick. And if I'm getting bored with my own blog then whatever must YOU think of it? So I'm branching off. Spreading my wings. Taking it to another level, if you will. Where is that level? I dunno. Wherever it goes. I'll still discuss fashion and beauty because, who am I kidding, that's SOOOO me! It's like my right arm or something. But there will be more about stuff, life, and crap. I'm all about less structure.

Change=Spice of Life. Expect spice.


Mini-Me Not So Mini

My girl child has hit some kind of growth acceleration stride. It's as if someone sprinkled her with Miracle Grow and turned the hose on full force. Or maybe it was the California sun over the summer that did it. Whatever it was or is, she jumped from a size 4T to a 6X in clothes; and from a 10 to an 11 1/2 in shoe size since this time last year. Any excuse for shopping, eh? Baby needs a new pair of shoes! And a whole new wardrobe. Turns out she didn't need a new winter coat. A whole story in itself as I blogged about here ; a tale complete with an unneeded purchase, a lost receipt, and a wet finger (don't ask, just go read it).

The girl child is tall. Almost freakishly tall. When she was 3 years old, I constantly heard "She's ONLY three?". Now that she's four I get, you guessed it, "She's ONLY four?". Although sometimes I hear, "What is she, in first grade?". Um. No. Kindergarten is still almost a year away. It was cute for a while, the oohhing and ahhhing over her uniqueness. Now I'm afraid girlfriend is gonna develop some kind of tall girl complex if people don't hesh-up 'bout it.

My favorite comment from the gawkers is "Is your husband tall?", as they look UP at me. Yeah. Hi. I'm tall in case you were wondering why you were getting a crick in your neck while talking to me. Where am I going with this? I dunno. I'm starting to understand the "kids are expensive" phrase that I once scoffed at. Diapers? Feh. Baby food. Pffft. Clothes for girls that grow on a rapid and consistent basis? Holy hell. Cha-ching!

She's a super model in the making.

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Bite Sized Nectar of the Gods

Like any decent parent I try to limit the amount of sugar in my children's diet. Apparently, in order to do this, I've decided that the best way is to eat as much of their Halloween candy as is possible. Is it any mystery why now, a week later I can feel the birth of a zit that will consume my entire chin? No. It's not. Yesterday I finally reached my limit with the candy. It was one of those "I have the willpower of a God" moments, and you hear the Milky Way bar drop itself back into the bucket. I heard it sigh in defeat. The bastid. I've still got Thanksgiving and Christmas to endure...I see mass jogging in my future.

**Photo by Dorothy Z.

Friday, November 2, 2007

Customer Service, We Have a Dilemma in Women's Apparel

I've got a Macy's gift card burning a whole in my purse and I just can't decide what to do with it! I swear to GAWD if I'm out shopping with my own cash I have no problem finding things to spend it on. But for some reason, whenever I have "free money" to just go get whatever I want, I literally can't decide, and walk out with nothing. Why is it that I want every single thing in the store when I DON'T have a gift card?

Decisions, decisions. Do I hit the MAC counter with a vengeance? Do I throw together an actual complete outfit? Or do I go really super duper extravagant and buy one single pair of Seven For All Mankind jeans? This kind of pressure is causing me to want to eat my fingernails. And my hands don't want that.