Thursday, March 29, 2012

The problem...

I'm so crafty when I can break away from the internet. It's almost more fun just seeing the ideas.

Birth Order

I am the baby of my family. My sister is the oldest and brother is a middle child. It's hard to pinpoint what characteristics come with this, but you know them when you see them. I'm sure it has everything to do with how much parenting experience your folks had when you were born.
The oldest child: If the circumstances were good, the first born had two freak show parents. Neither parent knew what to do or what to expect. A cough signaled certain Pneumonia. A little crying was extreme colic that warranted a trip to the doctors office. The first baby eats every 2 hours on the dot and every whimper is answered with mommy's attention. Far too much attention was paid to the oldest in the early days of their lives and mom and dad had to learn how to parent using the eldest for all their trials and errors. There would be MANY trials and errors. Long before the parents have a clue about what they are doing, the second will be on the way and your solitary life of attention will come to a halt. The upside is that all your clothes were new! You're younger siblings will have to wear all the crap that you happily stained.
The middle kid: This kid is temporarily the baby so all is well. This kid has to be amazing, super cute, or of a different gender than the others to keep mom and dads attention. This kid needs to resort to extreme good behavior or super naughty behavior to keep the spot light. If mom and dad get busy with the next baby, it will be fine, because this kid has an older sibling who is more than happy to boss this kid around. The middle kid will never have the insane amount of solitary attention that first born had, and sadly your spot as the baby will be ever so temporary. This kid is lucky because mom and dad aren't complete freak show idiots anymore, and they are busier now so you can get away with a bit more than the oldest could. If the middle kid gets frustrated with their plot in life, they can take it out on the baby (as long as mom and dad aren't watching).
The baby: Oh the baby! You will always be the adorable little, trouble making baby. Your siblings will love bossing you, yet they sort of resent you for stealing some of their attention. The rules will be very relaxed for you little one. The curfew for the oldest was 11:00 and you can feel free to stroll in at 12:45 because no one is awake to notice. You can fly under the radar. Mom and dad aren't overly worried about you because they already know that everything will work out in the long run. Who cares what you eat? Go to bed whenever you like. You are the baby, and you can expect to get your way. No one has the time or care to stop you.
I don't know exactly why, but I look back and notice that I almost NEVER dated anyone who wasn't the baby of the family. I married a youngest kid and strangely every boyfriend I ever had was the youngest of their siblings too. I don't think I ever once even had a crush on an oldest child. I wonder why this is? Now truthfully, I can't remember each and every one, and I'm not sure if the regular rules apply in blended families, but really I've only ever liked the last born kid. Why? I'm not exactly sure.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Bad Driving Habit

It's plain and simple. I can't drive on mute. I have a few choice words that I can't stop using when I'm driving. All the other drivers on the road are only known to me as "dumbass". I don't know how or when it started, but here we are.
"Green means go dumbass! Are you color blind or what?"
"Hey dumbass, you aren't smart enough for talking and driving! Hang up the phone dumbass!"
"If you're turning, get in the freaking turn lane dumbass! Don't be shy now!"
"Oh poor dumbass, did you car not come equipped with blinkers?"
Sadly, my children are now very aware of what makes someone a good driver in mommy's eyes and also what makes someone an awful driver. All over town you can hear my children in the backseat saying, "Seriously DUDE! Are you being serious right now?" They have been sweet enough to replace dumbass with the kinder, "DUDE". "Is this dude trying to make us late for ballet? Go dude!" Sasha often makes references to Mario Kart and begs me to get into "Mini-turbo", which means she'd like me to draft someone until we get a little turbo boost of power, resulting in us passing the car super fast. This is the regular car chatter. It's reality right?
I, like everyone else on the planet, am super tough in the safe confines of my car. I doubt I'd be so mouthy if the other drivers could actually hear me. I like to imagine how I'd behave if there were no cars and we all traveled on bikes. Would I really be the brazen enforcer of my own personal rules of the road if the other bikers could hear me?
Yes I would. Move over dumbass, get out the way. The fast bikes ride on the left!!!

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

US Weekly

We don't get the Newspaper, and Curious George or Wizards of Waverly Place usually plays on the television in place of the news. We have the internet so we are somewhat informed, but let's be honest. There is never any good news being reported. By "good", I mean happy or uplifting. Most of the news is pure Debbie Downer. I understand that our world is chalk full of horrible, mean, malicious people, but I don't want to hear about them. I have young kids and I'm already doing all I can to keep them safe, I can't watch the news and hear about all the crazies who are doing awful things to kids. It's a feeling of helplessness that drains me. So it's no surprise that our number one source of "journalism" (yes, I am using that term lightly) is our long awaited US Weekly. It's fluffy news! Good news! The pictures are pretty and the content is light as a feather. I can be happy that Reese Witherspoon is expecting a baby with her newest husband. I want to hear that. I can't wait hear if she's having a boy or a girl. What will she name this baby? This is the news I can handle hearing first thing in the morning. If this makes me a horrible person, then I'm thrilled to be one!
Technically I have to be an US Weekly subscriber. You can't have a hair salon in your home and not provide fresh US Weekly's. Well, you can, but why would you want to do that? It's a horrible thing to do to your clients. They want the gossip magazines, they need them, as do I. In fact, my whole family needs that magazine. I look forward to walking out to my mailbox every Friday just to see what "news" made the cover this week. I put on my sunglasses, sit on the front porch and read it cover to cover while my kids play in the yard. It's beautiful really. What's ugly is the scene you would witness if I opened the mailbox and didn't find my magazine in there. This has happened before and it's the beginning of a witch hunt. First thing I do is suspect that my elderly mailman has taken my magazine home for the weekend to read it himself. That doesn't sound entirely probable, so I quickly move on to plan B. I summon my kids to the sidewalk and we begin the journey to the next street over where there is a house with my same house number. My mail sometimes ends up at this woman's house and it never occurs to this woman to bring it over to me. I can't tell you how many times I've walked over there and she's sitting down reading MY magazine (before I do!). I understand why she does it. I'd do the same thing if I were ever lucky enough to have an awesome neighbor who subscribed to the most kick ass magazines. But I don't. I once got her Readers Digest and I tried to retaliate, but the content was awful and I couldn't read it, so I kindly delivered it to her.
So I read it every Friday afternoon and Dave then reads it during dinner or while eating breakfast Saturday morning. This mans world has been so much better since he started enjoying all the perks of life with me. He gets to watch all the best reality shows and he has full access to my gossip magazines. He really enjoys these simple pleasures now. Who wouldn't? So after he reads it, the magazine gets put in my salon where my daughters get to look through it every morning when they get their hair done. Sasha has learned to read and she practices her reading in my magazines. She is learning how to spell lots of different names and she is becoming a mini pop-culture expert. This is a dream come true for me! In fact, just this morning she asked to eat a Pop Tart with butter on it. I asked her where she got the idea to put butter on it and she said, "Jessica Simpson eats them with butter. The magazine said she likes Macaroni and Cheese and I like Macaroni and Cheese, so maybe I'll like Pop Tarts with butter on them too." And it turns out Jessica Simpson is on point with this one. They are delicious with a little butter melted on top.

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Movie Date

I got quite a treat this fine Sunday. I got to go on a mid-day movie date. Dave and I almost never go to the movies. We are cheap skates yes, but for the most part it's really due to the fact that most movies are so stupid these days. We only go if my sister (the professional movie goer) gives a movie two really solid and callused thumbs up. So I'm sure everyone who saw a movie this wonderful weekend, went and saw The Hunger Games. I really did want to see it, but getting Dave into a movie theater is hard enough, without adding the excess of people who are seeing a movie on it's opening weekend. Dave doesn't do "people". He hates crowds and he isn't the least bit interested in sitting right next to a stranger at the movie theater. I'm lucky that he'll even sit right next to me. So obviously we are only going to see a movie that has been out for a couple of weeks. We saw 21 Jump Street and it was AWESOME! I love a good "R" rated comedy. I usually go see these sort of movies with my girlfriend Jessica because she also loves a raunchy R-rated flick. We laugh like crazed hyenas and it's just obnoxious. We usually go to the movies mid-week, mid-day to avoid putting the masses through this. Though she would have loved this movies, Dave also enjoyed it.
So we show up for the Sunday matinee and it's still $6.50 a person for a ticket. I haven't been to a night movie in over 5 years. I would seriously not enjoy the movie if I paid $9.00 to see it. I'd pay that for a David Beckham peep show (maybe even $20.00 if I'm being honest)....but that's about it. There would be hell to pay if I saw a horrible movie and the price tag was $9.00. But back to the story. We paid for our tickets and we must have been feeling like big shots because at the exact same time we both said, "Let's get some popcorn." So we walk up to the concessions stand and I'm feeling like I don't mind wasting $4.00 on some popcorn. Well, it turns out that a toddlers portion of popcorn is now $5.00. Now, we don't need a large or anything, but that would have set me back $8.50. I can feed my family dinner for less than that! We just looked at each other and said, "Um......I don't need it that bad." So we skipped that, but I'm no dummy so I'd already smuggled in a drink and two bags of candy.
So we settle into our fancy seats and it's great because hardly anyone is in the theater. The lights dim and we watch about 6 mini movies. I guess you'd call them previews, but they were really long and detailed and I really feel like I saw 6 short films. They have a category at all the award shows called "short films" and I've never seen a real one, but previews should start to count in that category. I haven't made it to a movie in time for the previews in forever. I enjoyed it very much because it was a little more bang for my buck. This is all a real treat for me because it really is that rare of an experience. So we watched the previews/ short films (and loved them all!) and wouldn't you know it, our candy was all gone before the opening credits of our feature began. Lucky for me, I didn't need treats for the real show, because 21 Jump Street is a treat all by itself. My mascara was smeared by the end of the show. I was crying from laughing so hard. That kind of laughter is totally worth $6.50. So we loved the show , but in my home life, I never really sit down for two solid hours, so when I get up after the show I feel like I'm in physical therapy. Like I'm learning to walk all over again. It's like one leg has fallen asleep or something. Now I have to go down all these theater stairs and they are really tall and long and I have to walk down them like a toddler. Two feet on each step. But walking like a toddler is fine because I went out on a real movie date and it was awesome! I encourage all the shut- in's of the world to leave the house and see a movie. It's incredibly loud and exhilarating! I sound so pathetic here, but I had a really good time. So I'll make a public plea to Hollywood and ask that they all try a little bit harder and stop putting out so many crappy-ass movies so that I can justify going to the movie theater a bit more often. And I found the cutest sandals on sale at Sears.....and I bought them, even though Dave was with me! What a day!

Friday, March 23, 2012

I love Pintrest, but this is my struggle with it

Do I attempt to make all these delicious, food porn, treats or do I find a time machine, go back to age nineteen, starve, tan, get a rockin' boob job and photograph my abs? I'm torn.

Where are the seatbelts?

I am happy to say that this nice weather is finally motivating me to take Lyla for a spin in the jogger stroller. We walk Sasha to school and then our walk/run begins. It's nice and I always feel great after. I'm so glad it's not freezing cold anymore!
But this post is in not at all about exercise. This is about what I am seeing everyday while walking. There seems to be an excessive amount of floater kids passing me in cars. That is to say lots a parents don't think it's necessary to put their kids in seat belts for the ride to school. Most of them are riding in the back seat, but I have seen tons of them in the front seat too. I even see a kid riding on a parents lap. This lap riding seems to be a long standing tradition in this community. I recall seeing lots of otherwise intelligent individuals driving home from church in the late 80's with a toddler "driving" on their laps. Apparently, some of their descendants live in my neighborhood. It is a strange site to see these days. I recall a photo of Britney Spears doing this with one of her babies. At that moment, it was confirmed that society doesn't find this behavior acceptable or adorable.
I've also seen kids riding in the back of a truck too. In 2012! I note the year because riding in the bed of truck was not only legal (according to my dad and Ashleys older brother Josh) when I was a kid, but it also seemed to be the preferred seat for the kids to ride in. I get it because kids seem quieter when you don't bring them into the vehicle. I spent a good part of my childhood riding in the white-trash convertible (a truck bed) and I loved it. I knew it was dangerous, that was the appeal.
It was also totally acceptable for a kid to sit in the front seat when I was a kid. I was a real contender for shot-gun at a young age, though being the youngest, I rarely won that coveted spot. The front seat was obviously the best seat in the car and I knew it from a young age. There were no air bags, so I guess the front seat wasn't overly dangerous for a kid, but my mother never wrecked the car, so we never really found out. There were no car seats and boosters. I thank my lucky stars that there were no boosters, because I would have been riding in my booster seat to Junior High! It's not fair for the short kids! My mother, bless her heart, felt that the floor of the car was by far the safest place for a kid. When we would pull out onto dangerous roads, my mother would order us down to the floor. She had survived a crash on the floor and by damn that knowledge would not go to waste! So that's where you'd find me half of the time, on the floor of the car.
In modern times, I don't risk it with my kids. I want them to be safe in the car, but more than that I want them to be confined. I don't need my kids to have that freedom that allows them to reach over and really smack each other in the back seat. I sure as hell don't need a kid hanging on the back of my seat or climbing all over the place. That would drive me nuts! My kids have had a healthy dose of the seat belt Kool-aid. I have led them to believe that mommy will be thrown in jail if they aren't properly restrained. Judging from my neighborhood school commute, this isn't true at all, but I want them to feel uncomfortable without their seat belts on. One day I pulled out of the driveway and drove down the street and suddenly both my kids started screaming hysterically. I pulled over because I thought surely one of my kids heads must have spontaneously detached and is now rolling on the floor of the car. No, that wasn't the case. I had placed Lyla in her car seat, got distracted somehow and forgotten to buckle it up. My kids were horrified at my negligence. Mission accomplished!

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Well That Was Easy

My girls were scheduled for a dentist appointment. My five year old LOVES going to the Doctor or Dentist. I can't really pinpoint the reason why, but she loves these appointments. I think she likes having "plans", and she just loves social outings in general. She is always very engaging with the office staff and she loves to be big deal. She enjoys interacting with adults. Also, she LOVES band-aids. She's the type of girl who comes home from school with a new band-aid at least once a week. A blood-less, phantom paper cut is a fantastic opportunity to try out a shiny new band-aid! This is the kid you don't mind taking to the doctor or the dentist. Her excitement makes it fun. She's easy, she behaves.
Lyla, on the other hand, isn't game for this stuff. She is the kid who panics at the sight of the parking lot at the doctors office. She is not one to be tricked. She almost NEVER goes to the doctor. She would have to be pretty darn sick for me to even consider taking her in. She is the kid who mainly goes in for her yearly "well child" exams and even those are enough to bring out her doctor rage. She is the kid who recently told her doctor, "Don't look at me! DON'T LOOOOOK ATTTTT MEEEEE!" as she tried to kick him in the face and junk repeatedly. It's probably no surpriseat all that she is also a giant freak show at the dentist. She tells me ahead of time, "I be freak show at dentist". I wouldn't take her at all if I didn't already have an appointment for Sasha. The way I see it, watching her sister behave and have a pleasant experience, is the best way to calm her nerves about the going to these appointments. So when I knew we had a Monday appointment, we decided to start talking her into it a week ahead of time. Sasha and I repeatedly discussed how exciting it is to see the dentist, get a teeth cleaning with the "fancy" toothbrush and how great it is to pick out a brand new tooth brush! Lyla was started to get on board. By Monday morning she seemed fine about going to the dentist. She wasn't excited, but I thought she would at least not kick and scream. At 1:30 we walked into the dentist office and Lyla was uncharacteristically sweet and cooperative. She did EVERYTHING they asked her to do. They even got X-rays! She didn't bite, she didn't shed a tear. It was WONDERFUL! At the end of the appointment, her dentist asked me the dreaded question...."Does she still use a Binky, because her teeth don't really close together? She has a Binky bite." I shamefully had to admit that I've let her sleep with her Binky and he said very sternly that we have to get rid of it ASAP. He looked right at Lyla and told her to go home, get it out of her bed and throw it in the garbage. He also told her, "You're to much of a big girl for a babies Binky." So we get home and she goes directly to her room, retrieves her beloved Binky and marches down to the kitchen to throw it away. There was no emotion at all. She just threw it in the garbage and said, "Yucky Binky. I too big for that." And that was it. Naturally I was a bit skeptical about this "good riddance" act of hers. I hoped it would be the end of the Binky era, but I was not looking forward to the night ahead. I prepared by making her skip her nap, that way she'd be good and sleepy at 7:30. I got her ready for bed, and put her down. I gave her an extra "pet" to sleep with and walked out. 15 easy minutes later, she was asleep. She woke up the next morning and immediately asked if we could get the Binky out of the was the answer she received and I haven't heard another word about it since. That was so easy! Is our dentist a magician with words or what?

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

I've hit the nail on the head here...

Don't Scare Me Anymore

My five year old daughter doesn't know it, but she is trying to find the worst possible ways to wake me up in the morning. I use the term "morning", but what I really mean is quarter to dawn. She always wakes up at quarter to dawn. School could begin at 6:45 and she would be there with bells on. I'm not accustomed to sleeping in, but I do like to keep my eyes closed until 6:59 if possible. We have been dealing with Sasha's early rising for quite some time. Long, long ago, we put a digital clock in her room. I asked her to wait for the 6 to turn into a 7 and then we can all be awake. She is more than welcome to wake up super early and play with her things in her room. She is usually really good at this. She can be found counting the money in her piggy bank (literally counting like 1 coin, 2 coins, 3 coins) at 6:15 in the A.M. She has built many mega block castles before the sun has even considered rising. I just accept that this is the way she is. It's not a problem at all until she gets bored and comes looking for company. When she wants to wake me up, she is very stealth. She won't make a single sound until she is 6 inches from my face, and then all at once she will loudly and abruptly say, "Hey MOM!". I jump up because I am scared to death, confused and my heart is racing. I asked her to stop doing that, and she agreed, so yesterday I'm sleeping soundly and I feel a tiny finger drawing a line on my forehead that would connect my eyebrows to one another. This if far worse than having "HEY MOM!" screamed in your face. I nearly punched her accidentally. I didn't know what the hell was going on. I didn't know if my murderer was drawing on my face before killing me or if a spider was using my face as a shortcut. Maybe my husband is cruisin' for a bruisin'. I just didn't know and it scared me to death. I jerked up outta bed so fast that my neck still hurts today. She was waking me up to tell me that she needed to pee.....she is 5, she can pee independently and she walked past two bathrooms to tell me this. Her dad was already up and she bypassed him to alert me. I know she loves me, but this is ridiculous. The only worse way to wake up is to the sound of a two year old yelling the words, "I need go POO POOOOOOO! Really really bad!" from a far away crib. Either way, I'm up for good. I never thought I'd miss the calming sound of a blaring alarm clock.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Junior High Lunch

While Jr. High School did suck, I do miss the good old days when you could eat garbage for lunch and it was totally acceptable. There was a lunchroom at my school, and we had the classic lunch ladies there, but I didn't eat that sort of lunch very many times. Of course there were the occasional Taco and Tater tots days, but for the most part, I skipped it. I took my four shiny quarters directly to the vending machines! I don't know if public schools are allowed to have garbage filled vending machines anymore. I doubt it, but in 1991, we had an amazing selection of high calorie, zero nutrition snacks to chose from. Most days I'd buy a bag of Cool Ranch Doritos or Munchos. Everyone knows what Cool Ranch Doritos are. They are some sort of corn chip, covered in a delectable zesty ranch powder. I bet I ate Munchos at least twice a week for two years, and I could not tell you what a Muncho is. It could only be described as fried, fried stuff, or potato dust that had been fried into oblivion. They were delicious and if you ate them with Dr. Pepper, they would instantly melt in your mouth. I, like everyone, had my Cheeto's phase, but the powdery cheese could easily get out of hand and the next thing you know, you're walking the halls of South Jr. High with orange all over your face, and this was way before it was cool to have an orange face. I'm sure today most 13 year old girls wouldn't even be able to tell if they had Cheeto or Dorito powder on their faces. Bronzer is far to accessible for the young crowd.
So like I was saying, I'd get my bag of chips and I'd get in line at the soda machine. There, I would spend my last two quarters on a freezing cold can of Dr. Pepper, or Mountain Dew. All these flavors must have blended well on my 13 year old pallet. So now you find your little clique of friends and you're ready to consume your disgusting feast.
This lunch time ritual would be judged very harshly today. Even I would be disgusted to watch a rotten little teeny bopper eat that. But twenty years ago, no one judged. It was a simpler time. I didn't know what a carb was, and I had no aversion to Saturated Trans Fats. High fructose corn syrup was a member of the vegetable family back then. Why would you ever drink something that didn't deliver calories, sugar and caffeine to you belly? I bet people would have laughed hysterically if they saw a fifty cent bottle of water in the vending machines in 1991. It was just unheard of. All the teens would have said, "Isn't that the free stuff that comes out of the communal drinking fountain? What sort of idiot would spend the quarters they took from their mothers wallet on water?".
So after I ate my garbage with my friends, the bell would ring and I'd be forced to walk into the depths of hell...7th grade social studies, a.k.a. "Utah History". I HATED this class almost as much as I despised the teacher. He was a sad, depressed and awful version of Stephen Colbert and Bob Sagget. So this miserable man, in his dank, windowless classroom would start droning on about who knows what while I desperately searched for something to hold my attention. I recall scanning my classmates daily, desperately hoping to develop a mad crush on someone, anyone, just to make this hour tolerable. Add to all this the inevitable sugar crash I was having from my trash lunch. The whole thing was a recipe for disaster. Almost all my detention time was earned in that horrible class.
I'm so glad I just relived this terrible time in my life, because I am so thankful that I'm now a 33 year old grown up. I no longer have to spend my days in Jr. High lock down. I'm so sad that I will one day have to watch my own daughters go through this awful phase of life. It will be painful to stand by helplessly watching it. The good news is that my Jr. High school burned to the ground a few years ago. I drove by it one day and I was absolutely delighted that all my fantasies had come true! It brought a certain peace that those days are over, forever! Good Riddance!

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Farewell Jersey Shore

I will totally admit that I love the Jersey Shore! I didn't watch the first season, but after all the "Italian American" controversy, I was interested in seeing what all the fuss was about. I watched one mid-season episode and I fell madly in love with my Guido's and Guiedettes. What's not to love? The very next day I hit the internet to download all of season one and I watched them over the next couple of days. Somewhere during this Jersey Shore marathon, Dave got the bug. His interest was as innocent as mine and a couple years later, Jersey Shore is a high priority recording on our DVR.
I love the tiny, drunken Snooki. I'm baffled by Deena, but I love that she and Snooki are "the Meatballs". J-Wow's boobs are a weekly draw. They are crazy huge, and I love that she dresses like such a skank. If a Jersey Girl is going to pay for monster jugs, she might as well transform her wardrobe to really show them off. I am so glad Ron and Sam are getting along this season, but I also love when they fight. I would love to taste Ron's infamous blender drink, better known as the "Ron Ron Juice". Mike, "the Situation", is annoying, but good for T.V. I wish he never would have been a contestant on Dancing with the Stars. I didn't need to see that. I lost some respect for the Situation during that time. I can't believe how incredibly pigeon toed he is???? And that leaves me with the best Bromance of all time. My beloved Pauly D and Vinny. These two are like the "old married couple" of Seaside, NJ. I wish Vinny would have hit the gym and started tanning a bit earlier, but I love that crazy mama's boy anyway. They love each other in a way not many man friends can. They are adorable. I want so badly to touch Pauly D's blow out. I would normally think it was pathetic for a 30 year old man to use Spiker and blow-out his hair for 30 minutes, but it's great for Pauly. In fact, I love him for it. He really is "fresh to death".

If I ever find myself in New Jersey, you can bet your life that I will be making the pilgrimage out to Seaside Heights. I would first go directly to the Shore Store and buy as much Jersey swag as I could get my little hands on. Then I would get a drink at Jenks and start to prepare for a wild night a Karma. I would fist pump and jersey turn pike with a smile on my face. It would be the ultimate Jersey experience. Dave would love it!

I have no idea what will happen to the Jersey shore house this summer. Snooki and the tiniest Guido on the planet, Gianni are going to have a baby and so I know she won't be back this summer. It makes me sad to think that Dave and I just watched our last episode of this little gem of a show. I will watch the "Pauly D" spin-off show and supposedly J-Wow and Snooki have a spin-off too. Yes, I'll watch that one as well, but I will miss all the GTL, and all the drama.
Until we meet again Jersey Shore, I will miss you.

Friday, March 16, 2012

Juliet Simms vs. Sarah Golden: "Stay with Me"

Juliet is a rock star! I don't like the original Rod Stewart version of this song, but I can't get Juliet's version out of my head!!!!! The "folky" girl is pretty good too, but give me a break, Juliet owns the stage on this one. Love it! I'm also getting a little tired of my daughter constantly asking me if Sarah is a girl or a boy.... I finally just told her that even I'm not sure of her gender at this point. Watching her is giving me "It's Pat!" flashbacks from those hilarious old episodes of Saturday Night Live.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

The Voice

The List


What do these words have in common?

These are the words that I WILL NOT write unless there is a spell check available. I can't learn how to spell these words. I don't know why. I will never use any of these words in a Facebook comment, a hand written note, or a text because the public humiliation that will result is just to much to take. I think everyone has a few words that they always spell wrong. These are mine, and I will write nothing at all just to avoid having to spell them without the safety net of spell check.

I can't correctly fold a fitted sheet either. My mom tried to teach me years ago, but my brain will not retain that information. I just don't understand that one at all.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

After The Final Train Wreck (or final rose)

Wow, thank you US Weekly for totally wrecking the final episode of the Bachelor. I 100% knew who Ben would pick and it made all the Lindsey scenes unbearable to watch. Normally I can't watch Lindsey because of her voice and her make-up, but this was much worse. That poor girl was so set up for failure and she didn't even know it. I love how she said, "Well, call me if it doesn't work out." after he told her he wasn't choosing her. That alone is a great predictor of Ben's future.
Speaking of Ben, he sure did look like shit on After the Final Rose. A little piece of advice to all the fellas out there, if your "beard" looks like something a 13 year old boy could grow, you need to shave. I understand that he wants to distance himself from looking so much like Francine from the cartoon "Arthur", but he looked awful. And seriously, what is this stupid haircut? I can't deal with it anymore. It is so not attractive and he clearly needs a trim. If I can see your split ends on my crappy ass Vizio television, that's a problem. Also, is Ben's sister 9 months pregnant of is she just a huge fan of the worlds most unflattering sweaters? I don't get it.
All that being said, I sure hope Ben and Courtney enjoy all six weeks of their doomed romance. The upside of all of this is that I can't wait to see them end up on my future dream cast of Bachelor Pad. Move over Vienna, Courtney is ready to take your spot as most annoying Bachelor Pad contestant EVER!

My Bachelor Prediction

My Dad

I have a good dad. We aren't super tight. We didn't go fishing together when I was a kid. He wasn't the coach of my T-ball team and we sure as hell didn't have the maxi pad talk during the teen years, but we didn't need to either. I can't say for certain, because we've never discussed it, but my guess is that my dad had two main goals for life when I was growing up:
1. Support my family. Be a good provider and keep them comfortable.
2. Love my wife and stay married to her.
These goals sound pretty basic, but adult life will tell you that they are not easy goals at all. My dad has succeeded at both. He gets an A+ for sure. Not that he cares about grades. I don't think he does at all. My dad graduated high school and attended maybe one semester of college. It wasn't for him and trust me when I say he didn't need it. He needed to earn some dough quick, so he could marry my mother, buy a trailer and have the first of his three kids. I think he got the ball rolling on all this at 19. By the time he was 24 he had three kids and small house. He was working hard and it was paying off. Around this time, he and my grandpa started a business that would, in time, grow into something great. The way I see it, my dad couldn't fail. He is a hard worker and he has some solid OCD in his genes. I worked at his company for a few years and I learned exactly why he is so sucessful. He has no hobbies and he doesn't mess around! If something is due in two weeks it sure as hell better get done YESTERDAY. He doesn't rack up any kind of debt. If he can't afford it, he doesn't buy it. If someone sends him a bill, he pays it YESTERDAY. He has no tolerance for bullshit. This is also what made him a good dad in my book. He let you know exactly where the bullshit limit was and you didn't want to cross it. He kept us accountable, that's not to say I didn't do any wild, crazy things, but I knew better than to ever get caught and bring it to his attention. I didn't bring much trouble to his doorstep. I knew at a young age that if I ever got arrested, my dad would not be accepting a phone call from the jail, and the consequences at home would be worse than those in the slammer. A couple of weeks after I graduated from high school, I wandered upstairs in the middle of the day in my pajamas. My dad had come home, mid-day, to let me know that I needed to get a grown up job ASAP. He wasn't going to have me loafing around his house all day while he was at work. He has no tolerance for that bullshit and that was that, I found a new job the next day. I like having this sort of dad. He isn't needy at all and I so appreciate that. He's no cheap skate, but I still sort of feel like I get my money smarts from him. I hate any sort of debt and I don't feel entitled to things I can't afford. My dad gave me some of the best life advice ever and I'll share it with the world. This works for so many aspects of life and it can be applied to almost anything. He says, "Little piggies get fed. Hogs get slaughtered." I love that one. So eloquent. Thanks dad, even though I know you'd never read this nonsense in a million years. I love you anyway and I get you.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Meth People

Wow, what an exciting trip to Walmart I had today. I always shop for groceries Sunday afternoon and I had thought that the meth people get their two hours of sleep at that time of day, because I just haven't seen very many tweekers lately. Well, the streek is over. I saw the weirdest meth heads today. It was like a train wreck and I couldn't look away. There were two women, dressed sort of like twins. That is to say they both had on really awful jeans and matching flannel shirt jackets. They both wore velcro shoes (I know, where the hell does a grown up buy velcro shoes????) and they had the 90 year old faces of hard core, turbo meth heads. They both had horrendous hair, because that always looks best in a mug shot, and they both looked like drugs had beaten the shit of them. It was so strange that I had to let a fellow shopper in on the action. The meth twins didn't need much time to shop (old looking, but not slow moving). They had one cart and it was overflowing with (no not Sudafed) Walmart brand paper towels and Walmart brand toilet paper. I'm talking like 50 rolls of paper towels. It was so strange. I had no idea that a meth lab required so many paper towels. It makes sense I guess. If you're cleaning up a toxic spill, you don't want to ruin your "nice" towels. It was just a wild freakshow and I couldn't believe it was all real, but my cashier told me that this is not the first time that the meth twins had shown up in twinner clothes and gone on a strange shopping rampage. Don't worry, I totally asked the cashier if they always buy paper products, or if it's normally chemicals and sudafed. She just laughed.

Side note: My spell checker went nuts on this post. Apparently Tweeker, Sudafed, Meth, freakshow, Walmart and twinner , are not words found in the English dictionary. So I hope I've spelled them correctly.

Sound Advice

Friday, March 9, 2012

Working at the Bar!

What's better than serving food and drinks for $5 a table? Serving ONLY drinks for $10 a table. What's better than dealing with coherent people? Dealing exclusively with drunk people! What's better than going to the bar when you're 21? Getting paid to work there!
Welcome to the wonderful world of cocktail waitressing! This was one of my top jobs of all time but the timing of landing this job was the absolute worst. I found my perfect night job, just as I found my best boyfriend of all time (the future hubby). So just as I figured out how to profit from my love of the night life, I met the guy who would make me prefer staying home at night. For the first time in my young life, I didn't want to go out at night, I just wanted to spend as much time as possible with my man. It wasn't a great situation for Dave either. I'm sure it didn't warm his heart knowing I was collecting cash at the meat market a few nights a week. This was an absolute disaster in timing.

I'm not going to lie, the money was fantastic! I was amazed at how easily it was earned and I was doing so much less work than I had been when I was serving food and drinks. The folks at the bar were just so easy to please and they didn't seem to mind parting with their hard earned cash every time I delivered them a drink. Remember now that there is no such thing as a "free refill" at the bar. This fact alone made working there wonderful! It was amazing. And as the alcohol took effect, it only got easier. This simple gig was handmade for me. I'm quick, efficient and I don't need to be drinking to have a good time at the bar. This, sadly enough, was my dream job! I had no aspirations beyond this perfect set up. But like I said before, I had met the guy for me and the pull was too strong. I couldn't continue doing hair all day and serving drinks all night. I was rolling in cash at this point and I wish it could have gone on longer, but I had to make some time for Dave. It all worked out in the end, but seriously it was hard to stop working at a job that was so perfect. Now a days, people can't smoke in Utah bars and the job only looks better now. But I'm past my prime for work like that. I'm a mom now. My kids go to bed at 7:30 and I'm dead tired by 10:30. I haven't been awake to ring in the new year since 2005. Life is so different now, and I love where I'm at, but I still have such happy memories from my brief stint as a bar maid. I only wish I had discovered this gem of a job sooner. Don't knock it til you've tried it on this one.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Five Questions

Why can I remember vulgar rap lyrics from the 90's ( Too Short anybody???), but I don't remember what I made for dinner last night?

How can I become a contestant on Jeopardy? Teen Jeopardy to be more specific...

Why does my husband believe that one tablespoon is basically equal to one teaspoon? They are very different....especially when baking.

What ever happened to those scooters from my youth? They had bike tires on them, not huge tires, but small bike tires? They had real brakes too. I loved mine. I want my kid to have one, but they don't seem to exist anymore.

What the hell happened to LeAnn Rimes? Her boobs are so weird and I can see her skeleton without an X-ray machine. Other that having an affair with that Eddie Cibrian guy, and then marrying him, is she still famous? I don't know much about country music, but I don't think she really makes music anymore. According to US weekly, she spends a lot of time on beach vacations. But her boobs look so weird on her anorexic body. It's just so strange looking.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Take a look around

I'm having one of those rare moments where I'm basically home alone, except Lyla is actually just upstairs napping. I just walked into my quiet kitchen and took a look around. It just sort of hit me all at once, that I created everything I see. There are so many bits and pieces, but this home was created by me. I didn't frame the walls, or lay the floors. I didn't build the house of course, but I made it into a home for my family. I bought the flour jar, the coffee maker. I remember the day I found these rugs online and the afternoon I found my kitchen table at Costco of all places. I hunted for that couch for months and it cost a fortune and wouldn't you know it, I hate it! I made the pillows, those are totally me and I love them, but the couch isn't what I'd hoped it would be. But like I said, it cost more money than it should have, so I'm stuck with it for a long time. Never buy a couch when you're VERY pregnant.....take my word.
It is so strange to feel so young, but then realize how much of a life I've already built for myself. Every single thing in this house was most likely chosen and brought into my home by me. It's strange to look around and really try to remember why you bought each decorative thing you own. My memory isn't always the greatest, but if I really focus and think about it, I can conjure up the day, place and circumstance in which I chose all these little things that have made my house a home. It all looks so complicated and time consuming, but it all happened one thing at a time. Do I need all this? No. It's overwhelming to think that one day I'll have to pack it all up and move it. Isn't it strange how surrounding yourself with items that you find visually pleasing can make you feel comfortable. I like coming home to my space, with my stuff. It isn't even close to perfect, but it's my little stamp on this house and it makes it my home. Walk into your house and take a look around. How does it make you feel?

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Bachelor, The Women Tell ALL!!!!

I didn't sleep well last night. I am embarrassed to admit why. I watched The Bachelor: The Women Tell All episode really late last night, and I was too OVER stimulated to fall asleep. So much happened! I kept having really short, weird, Bachelor dreams. It was no good at all.
I was so glad Courtney appeared on the episode. She needed to hear first hand how horrible she was. I will admit that I do feel bad for her now. She went on this episode to apologize to all the other girls for her awful behavior, but we all know she was really there to repair her image. She needed to give this "public apology" thing a try. She is currently, according to the gossip magazines, the most hated Bachelor girl ever. I mean, OUCH! That is an awful title to have. I don't think that image of her will fade anytime soon. It would suck to be her, even though she is sort of pretty to look at.
I was very happy that Emily (the epidemiologist/ clever rapper) sat in the hot seat and cleared a few things up. I was outraged when she had a private conversation with Ben about Courtney's horrible behavior and her "split personality", and Ben warned her to "Tread lightly". He flat out told her to drop the issue and he even went so far as to tell her, "You might not know me as well as you think you do. Tread lightly." If I would have been in Emily's shoes at that moment, I would be the most famous Bachleor contestant EVER! I would have had my picture on the cover of US Weekly with the headlines, "Bachelor Girl Goes Ballistic on Ben". I would surely have smashed a beer bottle into Ben's cranium and given him the big "F-OFF doucher! I'm done with you dude!". She should have at least thrown a little sand in his eyes. He flat out deserved it at that point. So I was pleased to see her on The Women Tell All. She finally addressed that moment on the show and clarified that she wouldn't want to end up with a man that would talk to her that way. AMEN, Hallelujah! In your face Ben.
And on a lighter note....Doesn't Chris Harrison have the worlds easiest job. He travels the world, putting Bachelor drama on blast and doing simple subtraction so he can walk into the rose ceremonies at the last second and announce, "Ben, ladies, this is the final rose." Wow Chris Harrison, I could never have figured out that one. My mind couldn't possibly comprehend that if Ben has handed out 4 of his 5 roses, that now leaves us with 1 final rose. Hey Chris, thanks for paying attention in your kindergarten math class! But I'm not going to hate on you Chris. As far as I'm concerned, you are the holder of my dream job! Keep living the dream Chris!

Monday, March 5, 2012

Three Tiny Prisoners

I have recently become the warden of 3 small fish, Salt, Pepper and Dot. I dare you to guess what they look like. Miraculously, they were named in the Petco parking lot. It was quick! My kids were blessed with many strange allergies and we can't have a cat, so fish will have to do. Sasha was recently named junior sales girl of the month in the Jensen house. She sold me hook, line and sinker (pun intended) on this fish deal. At least ten times everyday, she'd tell me how responsible she is. She said, "Fish will really teach me how to be a great mom one day! They will teach me how to be even more responsible than I already am!". Every time we'd get in the car, she'd ask me if I was taking her on a surprise trip to the pet store.....and she'd be super bummed out when we were just driving to school. So after a couple of weeks of selling and begging, Dave finally gave in and we got some fish. Now I know what everyone is thinking. It's a mixture of "Every kid needs a pet" and "Fish are no trouble at all". But fish ARE trouble. They either die instantly, producing undue, five year old heartache, or they LIVE FOREVER (producing undue bother for mother). My kid is responsible, but she lacks the skills required to clean a grimy fish tank. The first two prisoners we bought were Salt and Pepper, the black and white Mollies. We actually went to Walmart the next day to buy an Algae Eater fish to help clean up the tank. These,"allergy eaters" as Sasha calls them, eat nasty stuff off of the rocks at the bottom of the tank. I suspect they eat poop too. This claim disgusted my daughter and she nearly rejected the "allergy eater" on grounds of grossness. I like the bottom feeder. This little fish is the ideal house prisoner. He cleans up after himself. What more could you ask for?
The kids like to check in on the fish frequently, but I don't know if the fish have really produced any joy. I don't like keeping fish in a box of water, against their will. I know nothing about fish, except that Tilapia tastes really good with pesto on it. I don't know if they like living in my house. When do they sleep? Do they want that little tank light on? Do they like Tropical Flakes or would they prefer some other type of food? I just don't know, and it bugs me. But my kid got her way and I hope she's pleased about it. We were able to get her the Little Mermaid tank and it was half price. So the the tank is really cute AND my daughter thinks I'm a big spender. So at least I found a smokin' hot deal. That makes the whole thing a little easier to deal with. I actually hope they live a while, because Sasha has already informed me that no dead fish of hers will be flushed down the toilet (she hates the thought of a dead fish living in the land of excrement). She has demanded a proper burial for any fish that might pass away in this house. So, yes, I'd like to put that off for awhile.

Friday, March 2, 2012

Time to buy a new one!

Broken Dryer

You don't know how much you love your clothes dryer until it's broken. I know this first hand because I was just there ten days ago. I have, what I used to consider, a very nice set of Samsung front loaders. My washer has been great and up until this point, I haven't had a complaint about the dryer either. That is until I put some clothes in the dryer for 40 minutes and came back to find freezing cold, wet clothes. The heating element had died completely. Thankfully Dave is pretty mechanical (and cheap as hell). He took the dryer apart, found the problem and ordered the part. He forgot to ask if the part was in stock when he ordered it. It was not in stock so,without knowing it, we were in for a 10 day wait. I still had some cold, wet laundry to deal with so I asked my sister if I could come over and dry my clothes. I went over on a Sunday night and before you knew it, the box wine was flowing freely. I enjoyed my laundry expedition very much! I don't know if her family had as much fun with it as I did (I'm sorry for wrestling you Lucas), but it was a fun night for me.
When you can't dry your own laundry, you start getting very stingy about what's really dirty enough to get a spot in the dirty clothes hamper. Eventually, things did get dirty and the laundry piled up, so I washed some clothes and called my mom for use of her dryer. She happily obliged. I dropped the clothes off and the next day clean, folded laundry was presented to me! No wrinkles! No wonky collars! Just fresh, deliciously clean laundry. My mother is the laundry master! If she were hurting for cash, I would happily pay her to do my laundry. Not only is she a pro at it, but she loves to fold laundry. I don't have this all. I hate folding clothes. There are a lot of times that I dry clothes and just leave them in the dryer for a day or two. It's horrible, because everything looks awful if it just sits in there. I will find ANY excuse (Pintrest) to avoid dealing with the clean clothes. I hate finding hangers and sorting out which clothes are Lyla's, and which ones are Sasha's and I HATE finding matches to socks. We always have an extra sock with no match. It makes me crazy. I could really get used to delivering my laundry to my mother and having it returned all beautifully folded. It was a wonderful treat in so many ways, but the other day the UPS man showed up with the part and I'm back to doing my own laundry. At least I sort of appreciate having my own dryer again. Maybe it will be like that great period of time right after you buy a new vacuum, where you really love to vacuum your house. Maybe having a dryer again will inspire be to become the laundry master that my mother is!

Thanks again Mom and Stacie for helping me out!

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Kid Toy Fails

We just had a birthday at our house. My "baby" turned three and presents were opened. We didn't really have a party for her, but she received a few great gifts from her grandparents and her aunts. My sister in law nailed it with books. Lyla loves to hoard her own books. And they were princess books to make it even better. My sister brought her a ton of balloons. This too was a monster hit. The kids go nuts for balloons in a way I can't really understand. Balloons mesmerize in this house. I could picture both my girls trading a kidney for a helium balloon.

While Christmas shopping months ago, I found some great presents I had set aside for Lyla's birthday. The first was a Barbie computer toy. It's cute and little. I looks like a three year olds laptop and my kid loves it. I really do think she is already learning a lot about shapes and letters from this toy. It gets played with A LOT! It's a great toy, EXCEPT for the fact that is is extremely loud. It sounds like Barbie is screaming orders at my kid. FIND THE YELLOW TRIANGLE! WHAT ARE YOU WAITNG FOR SOLDIER? FIND IT RIGHT NOW!!!
I wrongly assumed that there would be some sort of volume control on the toy. Nope, just one setting that I call "incredibly loud". A deaf person could hear this toy.

I've been in the "toy fail" game for years now. There are the barbies who ought to be packaged in a cement block, because it would be easier to chisel them out, rather that un-twist a million twisty ties to unlock their bodies from the cardboard. There are the puzzle boxes that are sealed shut. We seriously have to take a knife and surgically open the box. It never works out right and we end up with puzzle pieces in a ziplock baggie with a ripped up cardboard picture square inside. We've had the Disney movies with the "fast play" feature, that is anything but fast. They should be called Disney (your movie will start automatically after 30 minutes of commercials and previews) Slow play. We always get stuck watching every single preview because we can't find the DVD remote control. If you don't hit that menu button fast enough, you are in it for the long haul. Who seriously thought of that horrible feature and why on earth is it called Fast Play? It's like the real estate term "short sale". There is nothing short about waiting 4 month's for a reply to your offer.

I have come up with two solutions to an incredibly loud toy. First, I find the speaker on the toy and I cover it with Duct tape. It can't be regular tape, it has to be thick duct tape. Sometimes two layers are necessary. If solution number one doesn't solve the problem, solution number two will work for sure. Secretly remove the batteries from the toy. When your kids notice that something is horribly wrong with the toy, act confused and irritated. Complain out loud about how cheaply made toys are these days. Then after the kids have gone to bed, I magically make the toy disappear forever. The loud toy will then either move to a place called the outside trash can, or it will be dropped off in the Savers donation bin. The kids don't like solution number two, but it's okay, because you can't put a price tag on sanity. This reminds me that we have one of those toddler popcorn vacuum toys that needs to get magically lost from our house.