Category Archives for "Me"

Weekend regurgitation: Apparently, parallel parking is a necessary evil. Kind of like Spanx, except not as sweaty.

Earlier this week, I took Zoe to a new salon in the village for a hair and makeup consultation because prom is next week and between the dress, shoes, alterations, pedicure, manicure, jewelry, ticket and limo, we haven’t spent enough money. All that hollering and squalling Zoe was doing the moment she was sprung from the womb? That was newborn for PROM IS ONLY 6,235 DAYS AWAY, GUYS! JUST A HEADS UP! ALSO? CAN SOMEONE CUT THIS CORD OFF ME? BECAUSE, EWW.

By the way, who watched the prom episode of Parenthood last month? Afterward, who briefly considered locking her daughter in the basement until she turns forty? Or, at the very least, discreetly stitching a nuclear chastity belt into the seam of her dress?

I knew not knowing how to sew was going to bite me in the ass one day. Right now, my seamstress mother is yelling I TOLD YOU DUCT TAPE ISN’T THE BEES KNEES, DEAR. And my dad is yelling WE’RE HAVING DUCK AND BEES FOR DINNER? WHY?

The salon was on Main Street and for only the third time in my life, I was forced to parallel park, the first being my driver’s test twenty-eight years ago and the second being last year, which is the subject of the post I leave you with.

Happy Sunday, everyone!

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In my defense, the curb was only three inches high. It’s not like we needed a parachute or anything.

(originally published May, 2010)

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Last night, we arrived at Helena’s softball practice to find that the only available parking spot was located alongside the curb, between two parked cars.

After I executed a somewhat questionable 17¾ point turn, I made an executive decision, one that I think we can all agree with …

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I should not be the one to teach Zoe how to parallel park.

Amen.

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They are as deadly as they are opposable and they should probably be registered as lethal weapons

My thumbs are one of a kind. Well, two of a kind since I have a pair of them.

One? Two? Not that it matters within the context of this post but this is the kind of stuff that will keep me up at night. I still have trouble falling asleep for wondering why the plural of goose is geese but the plural of moose is moose.

Not only are my thumbs rendered useless whenever I laugh, losing anything remotely resembling a fine motor skill, but they also have an uncanny ability to spontaneously turn black and rot off whenever they get too close to a plant or a flower or any kind of vegetation, really.

They are the antithesis of those green thumbs you’re always hearing about.

I am a horticultural death wish, if you will, because of my thumbs. When it comes to the plant kingdom, I can single-handedly change the circle of life into a schizophrenic trapezoid simply by walking past a tulip.

For the good of all living things, I stay far far from nature, preferring instead to view it from the safety and comfort of a climate controlled environment such as my living room. That way, nature is protected from me and I from it. As well as from all the squishy bugs, worms and creepy crawly disgustings that come along with it.

Jebeers, why must the outdoors be so gross?

Nate, on the other hand, is an avid gardener. He loves to get messy and grimy and sweaty, even when there is no sex involved. To his credit, he does do his best to involve me by occasionally asking me for my input as to where stuff should be planted and I will use enthusiastic jazz hands to mime through the bay window directions such as “To the left” and “A little more” and “Go up a bit” and “Sorry, I meant down a bit” and “Stop getting huffy with me” and “No, you are not #1, I am simply flipping you the bird” and “I know you are, but what am I?” and “Perfect! now turn it at a 45 degree angle” and finally “WHERE THE HELL IS THAT PROTRACTOR I GAVE YOU FOR CHRISTMAS?”

In my defense, I do my part by running out there every so often and risking a botanical holocaust just so I can wave my arms around in a frenzy and fling my blackened, decaying thumbs off my hands into the soil for some cheap compost. I do this, even though it means that for days afterward, at least until they regenerate, I have no thumbs with which to text and have to resort to using my toes to communicate online. So if you occasionally see a few MMM MMMMMMM MM M MMMMM MMM status updates from me on Facebook, it’s all because I was helping Nate with the landscaping. That, and because keyboards and cell phones, especially those with touchscreens, are really hard to type on with stubby toes.

Why am I telling you all this?

Because this tree lives in my parents’ front yard.

It’s a Japanese Pagoda tree and it is gorgeous.

It’s the only one in their neighborhood.

It has hundreds of long, graceful branches that are adorned with hundreds of thousands of delicate white blooms.

It’s simply stunning.

Even a gardening ignoramus like me can appreciate its beauty.

Despite living in a moderate southern climate, this tree has weathered some pretty brutal weather and has withstood snow and ice and last month’s torrential storms and tornadoes.

It’s resilient.

But it hadn’t yet met my thumbs and my mom wasn’t going to take any chances. This was a woman who had already experienced the horror of coming *this* close to losing a beloved Japanese Maple at our first house because Dad drove over it with the lawn mower on two separate and distinct occasions known as June 3, 1982 and August YOU WILL NOT BELIEVE WHAT YOUR CRAZY FATHER JUST DID, JEEEEE-SUS CH-RRRRRRR-IST, I NEED TO SIT DOWN, GOD.DAMN.IT, 1988.

And, if our common willingness to spend forty-five hours finding $.03 so that a checkbook will balance is any indication, I am my father’s daughter. But instead of a John Deere, I have my thumbs.

So she glued my thumbs into my armpits, called a priest over to perform an exorcism and then made me wear a hazmat suit before she’d let me into her front yard, let alone anywhere near the pagoda tree.

I’m happy to report that both the tree and my thumbs, as well as all surrounding vegetation, survived the ordeal.

I now want a pagoda tree in our front yard and I will take all necessary precautions to make it happen.

Which means I may never venture outside of my house again.

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Weekend regurgitation: Double digit quads

Yesterday I turned 44 and we celebrated this event by outrunning a tornado on our way to Raleigh, North Carolina. Nothing screams HAPPY BIRTHDAY louder than an Emergency Broadcast System message warning you that if you don’t seek cover immediately, you will most likely be decapitated by a wayward Toyota. And when you’re stuck in traffic on I95 with no cover anywhere around you, there’s not much you can do but sit in your car and wish you had ordered the macaroni and cheese from Cracker Barrel instead of the stupid salad and fruit combo forty minutes prior because maybe those extra 98 net carbs and 4,622 calories would help cushion your fall after your body is sucked up to the sky and plummets back to the ground thirty minutes later and fifteen miles to the west.

Other than that, I took turning 44 rather well, I think. At least until Helena woke me up by yelling HAPPY BIRTHDAY, MOM! JUST THINK, IN ONLY SIX MORE YEARS, YOU’LL BE FIFTY!

Surprisingly enough, I did not peel off all my wrinkles and use them to strangle her. With age comes resignation, I guess. And slower reflexes. Damn, that kid is super fast.

In all seriousness, I’m actually enjoying my forties so far. I’d enjoy them a lot more if I could live them in the body from my twenties but, what can you do?

I leave you with the post I wrote last year around my birthday.

Happy Sunday, everyone!

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43 years old? Is that, like, 130 in Mom years?

(originally published April 2010)

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Tomorrow, I will turn 43 years old, which is a whole three years past the date when I wanted to stop counting. However, my family overruled me. My family always overrules me. This is why we have a male puppy instead of a female puppy. A male puppy that we acquired prior to June 30, the date I originally agreed to so that the kids would be home to help out with the training. It’s also why we have a 52″ shrine to high definition into our living room. And heat our pool to sauna level in the middle of August. Now I can add scars from third degree burns sustained by my forehead, courtesy of the inferno from 43 birthday candles to the list. In case you’re keeping track, the score is now Andy = zilch, Family = 983.

A few observations as I complete my 43rd year of life:

  • Last week, I ate an entire can of Betty Crocker frosting with a spoon. I had my period and it was dark chocolate and presumably full of antioxidants. The frosting, not my … flow. I probably didn’t have to clarify that but I’m a bit paranoid and don’t want anyone thinking I bleed the Willy Wonka chocolate river out my hoo-ha once a month.
  • Coincidentally last week, I gained two pounds. Who knew antioxidants weighed so much?
  • This week, I was one pound away from goal weight. If I don’t make it to goal weight by next week, I am considering putting our Dyson to good use by sucking out my uterus, appendix, gall bladder, adenoids and maybe even one of my colons. I’ll finally get to try out the Dyson hand tools everyone keeps raving about! Bonus!
  • I started running around my neighborhood while crying. It was all in the name of exercise, just in case you thought it was because of something even more hideous like my doctor telling me I had one month to live or worse yet, my eldest getting her driver’s license. And when I say “running” I’m talking about that murky middle ground between a dead stop and Mach 10. If my nine year old daughter keeping pace by drawing hopscotch games on the road and playing them along side me while calling out positive reinforcements such as Yes, we have 911 on speed dial and No, you’re lungs haven’t exploded out of your chest wall is any indication, I suspect I’m probably closer to dead stop. In my defense, they were really small hopscotch games.
  • I’m just going to go ahead and assume that it’s just pure coincidence that an earthquake shook the ground in China on the same day I started running because honestly? The alternative is a little demoralizing.
  • Last week, I may have uttered the words RICKY MARTIN IS GAY?!? WHO’S NEXT, ELTON JOHN? In that order.
  • I choose to live in a world where Anderson Cooper will never be the noun should anyone assemble those words in that order again. Unless, of course, they substitute the adjective “gay” with the adjective “On line two, holding for Creative Junkie and wondering if he should pack some extra Viagra, just in case.”
  • I have started with a new hair stylist who has convinced me not only to keep my hair brunette but also to grow it out. For months, I had been determined to chop it all off and turn the remaining tufts into a stark, raving OH MY GOD, A BLIZZARD THREW UP ON YOUR HEAD white. I’m attributing my about face to sudden onset mid-life crisis.
  • We assembled our IKEA dining room furniture and I recovered the chairs all by myself using a staple gun and lots of swear words. I will take pictures of the before and after as soon as I can find my hands underneath all the blisters.
  • Also, after careful thought and consideration, we spontaneously painted the dining room. Pictures coming as soon as I decide if I like it.
  • I typed that last sentence really quietly so Nate wouldn’t get all panicky. Do me a favor and read it with your quietest indoor voice so he doesn’t get suspicious.
  • We also painted Helena’s bedroom and assembled her IKEA furniture as well. Pictures coming as soon as I finish up her wall art and headboard, both of which are dependent upon my getting my shit together. Seeing as how I lose my shit all over the place every time her room resembles a pigsty, this might take awhile.
  • I am in awe of the contestants on The Biggest Loser and cannot watch an episode without yelling LAST CHANCE WORKOUT! BY THE WAY, WHERE THE HELL IS ALL THE SKIN GOING in ten minute intervals.
  • Oliver has grown to almost three pounds and has decided that his own personal, grassy potty area outside is beneath him. So is the living room carpet but for some reason, that doesn’t stop him from pooping on it. This is the fecal equivalent to FOR SHIT’S SAKE, WHAT THE HELL?
  • I have to take my Honda in because it’s squeaking and creaking and I’m losing sleep at night over the thought of it suddenly breaking in half during rush hour traffic. Upon cursory examination, it appears that the ball bearings are in dire need of repair, thereby reinforcing my theory that anything that comes equipped with a pair of balls is going to keep me up at night one way or another, whether I’m in the mood or not.
  • I had my eyebrows threaded yesterday at a kiosk in the mall. Previously, I had them threaded at a salon. I prefer the salon to the mall as hair removal is painful enough without having it witnessed by people with mouths stuffed to the brim a la Cuisine de Food Court. How they manage to yell DOES IT HURT in passing while chugging down a Whopper with a Maggie Moo chaser and not choke to death is beyond me.
  • I currently subscribe to a few popular conspiracy theories, such as (1) Lee Harvey Oswald did not act alone; (2) the government silenced Marilyn Monroe; (3) aliens walk among us with the full knowledge and blessing of the government; and (4)  with her appalling lack of talent, personality and shame, Kate Gosselin will win Dancing with the Stars.

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Weekend regurgitation: My midlife crisis is on back order

In the past few weeks, I have done all of the following, some of them more than once:

  • Forgotten my name
  • Cried at a Kentucky Fried Chicken commercial
  • Mourned the puppyhood of Oliver who recently turned one in January
  • Thought about opening a Greek restaurant
  • Cried because I don’t know how to cook Greek food
  • Bought something new and fresh and exciting for myself at Charlotte Russe
  • Returned something completely and totally inappropriate to Charlotte Russe ten minutes later
  • Contemplated getting a tattoo
  • Cried while watching a Real Housewives of Orange County episode
  • Cried because Zoe is going off to college in approximately 520 days
  • Wailed because Helena is going off to college in approximately 2,700 days
  • Forgotten my name
  • Repeated myself

I leave you with a post I wrote last year about a midlife crisis. Time’s a wastin’ and pretty soon, I’ll have to request a three-quarter life crisis instead.

Happy Sunday, everyone!

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I’d like a midlife crisis soon, please. While I’m still young enough to enjoy it.

(originally published March 11, 2010)

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Dear God,

I am writing to inquire as to the status of my application for an Official Midlife Crisis. I believe I am deserved of such an event and have previously provided your staff with all of the documentation required, including but not limited to the following:

  • My birth certificate. Please excuse its crumpled condition as I became quite distraught while examining it, what with reliving my entire birth process and the eighties all over again. I’m not sure which event was more traumatic. While my birth year may look like a smudgy blob, rest assured that it does state 1967. Evidently, the salt from my tears had an adverse reaction to the typewriter ink they used way the hell back then. Also, please forgive my use of “hell” just now. It’s a compulsion, but you probably know that already since you equipped me with potty fingers. I just want to assure you that my use of such an expletive does not, in any way, suggest an affinity towards your nemesis.
  • Birth certificates of my two daughters. Please note that one is approaching the age where she will not only be getting her driver’s license but will also be allowed to date. Please note that the other one, while her birth certificate doesn’t explicitly state as such, is currently nine but going on thirty.
  • A copy of my marriage certificate evidencing my marriage of ten years, together with a supporting affidavit indicating that I have not had a full night’s sleep in ten years due to a husband who snorts the Navy Blue Angels up his nose every night before he goes to bed.
  • A security video of me having a moment in the middle of Wegmans when I discovered they were out of Ho Hos. In the event the audio is unintelligible, please note that I am hyperventilating in between shrieking OH NO, NOT MY HO HOS! NOT MY HO HOS! WHERE ARE MY HO HOS? WHO’S GOT ‘EM? I SWEAR ON MY MOTHER’S GRAVE I WILL KILL YOU, YOU SONS OF BITCHES. Transcript available upon request, together with an affidavit from my mother attesting to the fact that she is very much alive.
  • Medical records from the local hospital over the course of the past year documenting seventeen cases of whiplash sustained by my husband as a direct result of my changing my mind about paint colors and sex, both at the speed of light and sometimes even simultaneously.
  • Excel spreadsheet of hormonal surges with accompanying pie chart indicating the severity of the surge and whether it resulted in a frenzied sobbing fit, a violent act of rage or a complete psychosis, together with a corresponding video captured by my youngest daughter of me blubbering hysterically at the preview for the Real Housewives of Orange County reunion show.
  • Stool sample from the manifestation of my shriveled up fallopian tubes and eggs our puppy.
  • PowerPoint presentation of the thermonuclear energy produced by my hot flashes, as well as an embossed thank you note from the Department of Energy.
  • An assortment of various MapQuest printouts of local tattoo parlors, pole dancing classes and skydiving facilities.
  • Surveillance video of me perusing skinny jeans, jackets with fringe and other completely inappropriate clothing at places such as Hot Topic where I have no business shopping.
  • Handful of tweets suggesting lustful thoughts of karate instructors twenty years my junior.
  • Copy of youngest daughter’s fourth grade math homework covered with corrections and bearing the advice “Helena, please do not let your mom help you with your homework anymore” right next to a big sad frowny face.

It is my hope that the foregoing meets all your criteria for batshit crazy and that you approve my application for Official Midlife Crisis status as soon as possible, before perimenopause sucks my will to live.  Should you need proof of purchase of a boob job/tummy tuck/Botox/complete overhaul, please advise as soon as possible as time is of the essence. The local plastic surgeon has a waiting list a mile long and I might not get in before full onset menopause at which point, I will be too busy shaving my face and drowning in boob sweat to enjoy a crisis of any other kind.

Thank you for any and all consideration.

Sincerely,

Creative Junkie

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Blogging that fine line

When I started this blog, I didn’t exactly know in which direction I was going to go but I felt instinctively that whatever I decided to write would be written with 95% honesty and 5% embellishment. It wasn’t long before I knew that I’d be writing primarily about my own life. I’ve always said that you should write what you know and, well, I know me.

It also wasn’t long before I knew I’d be writing with transparency and by that, I don’t mean that I decided against conjuring up some fake online persona who was living the single life in New York City and scheduling her next in vitro session but rather, I decided that I wouldn’t use fake names or refer to my husband as The Big Kahuna or my kids as Little Kahuna #1 and Little Kahuna #2. While I applaud bloggers who do just that to protect their privacy, I know my limits and simply thinking about how I would keep track of my online persona and keep it separate and apart from my real life is exhausting. Better to just keep it simple and have my blog reflect my real life and then I wouldn’t have to worry that in one post I referred to Little Kahuna #1 as Helena and in another, as Zoe.  Or that I once referred to Little Kahuna #2 as my four year old son and then three months later, I blogged about how Little Kahuna #2 couldn’t wait to get a padded bra and a Sephora gift card for Christmas and then immediately had to blog the very next day for continuity sake about how I just discovered that Little Kahuna #2 was gay.

That being said, I have set some blogging boundaries. Among a slew of things I don’t blog about, I don’t blog about my husband’s job. Nor do I sneeze intimate details of my children’s personal lives and relationships all over my blog, although dirty underwear strewn on the living room floor is free game. And while many of my posts dance under a billboard with WARNING: TMI BELOW emblazoned on it in strobe lights, you’d be surprised at how much of my personal life I don’t blog about. Happy stuff, no problem. Stuff that makes me cry long into the night, not so much, unless I can find some humor in it because finding the funny and letting it guide me to a safe place has always been my survival tactic. So while I blog with a certain degree of transparency, I also blog with a certain degree of privacy as well.

Sometimes, the price I pay for choosing to maintain this balance is a high one, especially when I can’t find the funny, even with binoculars. It means that when I’m filled with anger or disappointment, I cannot come here and vent until my fingers bleed from typing so much screaming. Nor can I cry and drip snot all over this blog because I’m feeling overwhelmed with sadness. Because my blog is based on my real life which means real people and real relationships are at stake and words, even those written on a blog in the heat of the moment or after a year and a half of emotional turmoil, can affect them all and sometimes hurt far more than a well placed kick to the gut. So while my blog is my creative outlet, my therapy, my joy and often times my solace, it is only to a certain extent and on occasions like tonight, when I need it to be more, it fails me. The fact that I knowingly chose it to fail only amps up the frustration level and makes me occasionally wish that I had chosen to blog anonymously instead because then, I’d only have my own feelings to worry about and I could let my soul weep without caring if anyone else’s soul was crushed in the process, or I could let the proverbial shit hit the fan and not care a whit about who gets sprayed with poop.

But that’s not me. And I can only blog about what I know which is, well, me. Funny how things come full circle, isn’t it? Which means I’ll more than likely be paying a $40 co-pay to some therapist so that she can pick up the slack where my blog left off.

I wrote this post because tonight I realized, yet again, that the life I once envisioned for myself is not going to be and while that doesn’t make me any different than 99% of the rest of the world, it still stings. And while the rational part of me knows that it’s not the end of the world, the emotional part of me turned to my blog, hoping to find some solace within its tight parameters.

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