Saturday, February 26, 2005

I’m so busy I’m standing still

I took a break on posting – which is probably a good thing because the posts would have simply been incoherent ramblings. This month has been just crazy - like irritable bowl syndrome crazy.

I also missed reading my favorite blogs and will definitely spend some time today catching up with what you all have been doing for the past week. I took a peek at what some have been up to already and I see I have to update another one of my links. A slew of people way cooler than me - well maybe not WAY cooler - but definitely slightly more - have been migrating to dot com land or doing neat stuff to their existing templates. Sigh... I'm SO jealous - but all of your sites look extremely nice and when I have the time to learn how to - ah, who am I kidding... Nevermind.

You see, Jack had been away working for 5 weeks straight – that bastard – okay he was hard at work providing for his family, putting food on the table and more importantly contributing significantly to my “I REALLY need a new car” fund. But, after week number three of being alone with my children, I did start to hate him a bit. Add to that four birthday parties and a sleepover for Emma. Matthew with the flu then baby measles (puke everywhere), countless loads of laundry and then a trip to vet for dimwitted Shlabby dog (who is now barking in falsetto) to get neutered.

Oh right - and my job (which I do really enjoy) but it has also been a bit hectic as of late. I gave spectacular presentation at a workshop at the beginning of the month. Okay so there may have been a few Power Point slides involved BUT nobody actually fell asleep – so basically it went pretty well. I also took a 2-day seminar course on Leadership & Communication skills - learned about 'active listening' and some other stuff yadda, yadda, yadda… Then the days became a mad blur spent playing catch up in office for the above activities. Oh my GOD the EMAILS…. I didn’t realize how many emails could be amassed during a 2-day absence from the office.

Then there is the course I am taking. One of the very cool perks about working at a progressive postsecondary institution is that we (the employees) can take the courses for FREE. That’s right FREE UNIVERSITY COURSES! Being that I am still paying student loans from my previous university endeavor NINE years ago, what could be better than free university? But somewhere in all the ‘Woohoo it’s free!’ excitement, I keep forgetting that in my previous university endeavor I did not have the 2 kids and the full time job… Result: I enroll in courses that are fabulous and incredibly interesting and then I am too busy or tired to work on them for a LONG TIME then I realize by way of a panic attack at 3:00am that I have a paper due and that should really just give up sleeping all together for the next week.

So, this weekend all I that have planned: to play with the kids, to run my dogs, and to relaxabitgoddamit. Well actually I have to do some laundry as I had to hunt for a clean pair of socks for Matthew this morning. And - I do really need to get groceries because I did also have to get a bit creative when packing Emma’s lunch yesterday. This is scary because at 7:00am and the house empty of standard lunchable type items there was a real possibility that the child could have ended up with a can of tuna, a few saltine crackers and a juice box in her Hillary Duff lunch kit.

BUT - I sure as hell am NOT vacuuming squat or cleaning any toilet bowl today! (Unless things get really gross - but rest assured that I will do a half-assed job that is for darn sure...)

Monday, February 14, 2005

The Core Plan

Remember my New Years resolution to lose weight? Well here’s an update.

Weight Watchers: the Points Plan just did not work for me. Turns out that it was way too much of a hassle for me to track every bloody thing I ate and then look up the assigned point value for that item and then calculate the total daily points to see if I was within my allotted pointage for the day. So, I have decided to just stick with the other Weight Watchers plan – it’s called the Core Plan. As interpreted by me, the Core Plan is outlined below:

1. Have as many vegetables as you want! No really, AS MANY as you want - here have a carrot.
2. Put the Doritos DOWN! Now WALK AWAY from the Doritos!
3. WHOA! Seriously, you call that a portion? HAHAHAHA - Whew… No I don’t think so… Cut that in half and then divide by 2 and THAT will be your portion missy.
4. HELLO? What do you mean you don’t know what tofu is? No it’s not gross at all. Why don’t you try some with this carrot?
5. My you seem grumpy today… Gagged on the tofu did you? Here, have a carrot.
6. Your daily water intake should be 8-10 glasses per day, so that means you need to increase your water intake by about 8-10 glasses. No, ice cubes don’t count.
7. You may not really enjoy this plan in the beginning, we call this the detox phase – but you’ll get past it and in the mean time you can simply enjoy having very regular bowl movements.
8. Oh, couple of minor details: there will be no booze, you should cut back on the coffee intake to no more than 1 cup a day, and if it tastes good you probably can't have it.
9. And yeah, you should really get off your ass and dust off the treadmill about 3-5 times a week. And by the looks of things, *ahem, lifting weights a few times a week would probably also be a good idea…
10. Hey fatty, stop your whining! Here have a carrot.

So that is what I have been doing lately. I also have been working out. I ran 3km today and then did biceps and chest. I expect that I won’t be able to lift anything heavier than a carrot tomorrow.

Sunday, February 13, 2005

Shlabby Valentine's Day

Wednesday, February 09, 2005

100-Day Project

The elementary school here celebrates the one-hundredth day of classes by having the kids (with the extensive help of their parents) bring in a project that exhibits a collection of one hundred items. It can be anything, as long as there are one hundred of them, it fits in their backpacks, and can be easily displayed.

Now I am a not the overly competitive type - but I didn’t want to be the mom of the kid who brought in the 2 rolls of pennies either. Last year, was my first experience with the 100-day project. Emma was in Grade One and my hobby du jour happened to be winemaking so and I had a bunch of corks handy.
Supplies on hand, Jack and I were inspired to craft a magnificent corkboard using - you guessed it,100 corks, a sheet of cardboard, a hot glue gun and a black sharpie.
I’m not going to lie, it took some time to complete this project but we were in good spirits. Jack and I only disagreed a few times over the layout and design of the corks and I only burned myself the once. We finished up about 2:00am and were thrilled with outcome as well as with our totally unique concept. I was so proud of our offering, because dang it, it was a pretty cool exhibit of 100 of something.

The next morning:
Me (holding up the cork board): Hey Emma, look at this! Prrretty Cooool huh?
Emma (squinting): What is it?

Jack (car salesman voice): It’s a corkboard! See, mommy and I stayed up really late to make your 100-day project for school today. See how we glued 100 corks on there? Neat-O huh?
Emma (skeptical): There’s no glitter on it.

Me: We don’t have any glitter and corkboards don’t usually have glitter anyway.
Emma (still skeptical): Well, it’s okay. I guess.

Jack (grumpy): It’s time for school let’s go.

So off went little Miss Emma to school that day with our masterpiece 100-day project in tow. When I picked her up after school, naturally I wanted to hear all about how everyone ooed and ahhed over her project.

Me (excited): So what did everyone think of your awesome corkboard?
Emma (distracted): They liked it I guess.

Me: I bet they liked the pattern huh? Did they touch all the corks?
Emma (uninterested): Ummm, I guess. Oh, Mitchell jammed a pencil in it and it stayed there.

Me (slightly irritated): Well what did the other kids bring?
Emma (loud): WELL, Katie brought one hundred of those paper birds in ALIMONY!

Me (confused): Do you mean ORIGAMI?
Emma (grumpy): YES! They were the folded paper birds and they all had GLITTER on them!!

So you do you all see what Jack and I are up against? Who the heck has the time to be folding up 100 frigging origami cranes with GLITTER? Who ARE these people? Psychos…

Anyway this year, I knew better then to invest a bunch of time and energy into this project only to be outplayed by the origami lady again. Yet I still didn’t want to be the mom that sent her kid to school with the box of 120 paperclips minus 20 of them. You know?

*** Solution = CANDY.
Our 100-day project this year:
One small Gladware container + 100 cinnamon hearts (Valentines theme) + the assembly time of 2 minutes = the BEST 100-day project EVER.

So here is how it went down when I picked up Emma from school this time around:

Me: So how was your day?
Emma (excited): Mom it was great, EVERYONE LOVED my100-day project and we all shared the candy.

Me (snickering): So everyone liked the cinnamon hearts huh?
Emma: Yes LOVED them!

Me: That’s nice – so what did everyone else bring?
Emma: Natasha brought a house made of 100 Popsicle sticks that had a backyard with a pony AND a tree in it!

Me: That sounds nice. So… what did ol’ Katie bring this year?
Emma (thinking): Oh – she brought 100 dog biscuits.

Me (shocked): What? DOG BISCUITS!?
Emma: Yeah Katie said it was a “last minute” project.

Me: HAHAHAHahahahahaha!!!

People, I am having a GOOD day!

Tuesday, February 08, 2005

The Lazy Spot

One of Jack’s biggest pet peeves has been in regards to a place in the house he has dubbed ‘The Lazy Spot.’ Oddly enough, the location of the so-called ‘Lazy Spot’ is indeed the garage door doorknob. That’s right – the DOORKNOB.

You see, I have this CRAZY habit of gathering and rinsing out all of the empty juice boxes, milk jugs (and the odd scotch bottle) and placing them into plastic bags. Once in a bag, I will then walk through our laundry room to the door that enters into our garage and hang this bag on the doorknob of the door. I do this because the next person (usually not me because I am much, much too busy and important) who goes into the garage (Jack) will see the bag hanging there and then take said bag into the garage and empty it into the bigger container that we reserve for all of our recyclables.

Jack feels that it “wouldn’t kill me” to actually open the door and walk into the garage and empty the bag into the recycling bin - as opposed to merely hanging it on the doorknob. You see merely hanging the bag is being “lazy.” Of course a whack of empty bottles can be littering the countertop in my kitchen ALL week and go un-rinsed and un-moved, yet a bag hanging off of a doorknob is unacceptable? M’eh, actually he’s right. See, I HAVE mellowed over the years. It probably wouldn’t kill me to take the bag into the garage and empty it into the big container. So what the heck, I was all about to change my evil ways and conform to this plan but unfortunately Jack decided to he had to go and illustrate his point by doing the following:

This past August, on a beautiful Saturday afternoon, I was looking out of the kitchen window and noticed Jake ‘the Shlab’ dog dragging a hacksaw across the lawn. Naturally, I freaked out because dimwitted dog + hacksaw = potential trip to the vet. So I quickly went and retrieved the hacksaw from the dog and hung it back up on the pegboard in the garage.

That night, Jack and I were lying in bed and something (his incessant tossing and turning) reminded me of the fact that I had failed to (bitch at) mention to Jack the fact that the dog could have been MAIMED because of the hacksaw being left outside – and really, how could one forget to put away a hacksaw?

Me: So what were you doing with the hacksaw today?
Jack (yawning): What?

Me: The hacksaw - the one that I found in the backyard today?
Jack: Oh I cut back the apple tree – I hope that bloody thing dies.

Me: So why did you not put the saw away? Jesus Jack, the DOG was CHEWING on it!
Jack (sitting up in bed): AHA! So you don’t LIKE it when things don’t get put away in the GARAGE where they BELONG either huh?

Me (baffled): Jack did you leave the hacksaw outside on purpose to irritate me?
Jack: Damn straight! It’s annoying isn’t it?

Me: I suppose that this is all because the bag of recycling hanging off of the garage doorknob isn’t it?
Jack (huffy): Well it isn’t much to ask to take the bag into the garage … I mean really.

Me (sigh): You are a twit.
Jack: So, did you put the hacksaw away in the garage?

Me: No.
Jack (concerned): What? Well where is it?

Me: It’s under the bed. Good night dear.

(Disclaimer: neither Jack nor myself would ever leave a sharp pointy tool outside in reach of our kids – they were away at the grandparents being spoiled and pampered that weekend. The dog – well, I am surprised he has made it this long being that he also eats the soap out of the bathroom if we don’t put it away.)

Friday, February 04, 2005

After twelve years...

After twelve years of active participation in any relationship the following situations have likely occurred: One person has tried to change the other person and has failed miserably, both parties have at one point threatened to leave or worse - have suggested marriage counseling. Both have slept on the couch, both have not spoken and then have left nasty voice mail messages or notes – and both have at one point had to dig way deep down inside the centre of their beings to find that extra little bit of patience and understanding that was needed to prevent a potential murder suicide (PMS) situation. There has been nagging, oh yes, a plethora of nagging AND there has also been an abundance of psychoanalyzing (or so he says.) Hurtful things have been shouted and then instantly regretted, eyes have been rolled, doors have been slammed, and the snoring of one party (coughJackahem) has at one point been an issue.

That being said, after twelve years, I really think Jack and I have pretty much fought our best fights and in doing so have learned how to compromise and to breathe and to just let things go. Our major issues have been hashed out and put away neatly. We have grown up a lot, mellowed out a bit, and learned to appreciate and to respect each other immensely. (FYI: having kids really helped to speed up that learning process...)

So what does that leave after twelve years in a relationship when you don't really fight anymore? Well I’ll tell you - it leaves bickering or as I like to refer to it - as “keeping the magic alive.”

JACK: Why does she fail to notice the sticker EVERY time? There’s a Goddamned STICKER on the bloody windshield of her car, for Christ sake, that SAYS when the next oil change is due – yet here we are MONTHS after the indicated oil change due date and has there been an oil change on her car? NO there has NOT! GRUMBLE…

ME: Why can’t he for GOD sake, just fold the clothes when the dryer buzzes instead of letting them get cold and SO damn wrinkly that I need to iron every SINGLE item – like I don’t have enough to do already that I need to iron every single piece of clothing that I own – because SOMEONE couldn’t take the THREE minutes to fold the clothes while they were still warm. HMPH!

And they lived happily ever after.

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