Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Bored Housewife Year in Review

I follow this other blog called Dooce (maybe you've heard of it) and she did an end of year post that I am unabashedly stealing. (and its a cleaver little way of sending you through the back catalog if you're so inclined.) Here goes.

Here is a synopsis of Bored Housewife's 2009:

1) I got sick as a dog. A dying dog, in fact. I went to bed on January second and effectively didn't get up until mid-March. Then I got sick again, and recovered more quickly, but the way I see it, the first half of the year was pretty much shot to hell.

2) I had the one year anniversary of this blog! I have a band of loyal followers who make me feel like a super star.

3) I went camping three times.

4) I lost 2o pounds, and then found them again.

5) I redecorated my living room.

6) I had thrush.

7) My husband got to keep his job, our house is not worth less than what we owe on it, I didn't have any major car trouble, all my appliances (besides the water heater) made it another year, and no one in our house got the swine flu.

8) I went to Hawaii and Washington.

9) I made a whole batch of new friends

10) My house got all new pipes and a new water heater.

11) No one died. (Although, considering the year isn't actually over yet, I probably shouldn't jinx this. I am crossing my fingers and toes.)

12) I purged 12 bags of crap out of Leila's room and she's only asked for one thing back. Success!

13) I did a little dance, made a little love.

All in all, not a very eventful year, except for the near death experience. Bored Housewife indeed. Love you guys!

Tuesday, December 29, 2009


I'm back, my lovelies, BACK! The holidays are over, or almost over. We still have to get through New Year's Eve and the New Year's day traditional packing up of the Christmas stuff in time for Leila's birthday on the 3rd. I'm always in a funk on December 31st. In fact, in the notes I write to myself every year, reminding myself not to buy any more wrapping paper and that I need new mulling spices, I have a note that says, "You will be in a bad mood on New Years Eve. Deal with it." I plan to vedge, and eat and read and hibernate until its time to go bowling.

We had a nice Christmas. I will do a post mortem on Holiday Season 2009 and decide what parts I love and what parts I don't so I can minimize some of the stress next year. I think those six dozen bicotti really set a bad tone for the rest of the month. I feel like I spent the whole month in the kitchen, and we still don't have anything to eat. All we have in this house is m&ms and Trader Joes peppermint cookies. Even I can't live off that. And what a mess, huh? I cannot believe the clean up from Christmas day; the boxes, the paper, the packaging, the receipts the food the returns, blah blah etc. etc.

Last year, I told you that my family always exchanges meat products, for reasons passing understanding. This year, the only meat that was given was a can of fish from my dad to me. I gave it back to him, but kept the Safeway gift card that was taped to it. Rob gave my dad a jar of white asparagus, but that doesn't count as a meat product. I also told you last year that my mom is so stingy with the See's candies, so this year I ignored her protests, and told her that a) nobody likes these leftover cookies she puts out for dessert, and b) I ate saurbraten whithout complaining and I deserved some goddam bridge mix. I ripped open the package and ate them while looking into her pleading face. How can someone who is usually so generous be so stingy with candy? I don't understand it. She had kind of a sour puss on all evening. I don't know what her problem was. Maybe next time I'll bring my own bridge mix and write the gift tag out to myself. That way she can still regift hers. She also gave Leila a 30 year old travel alarm clock; you know, one of those old things that folds down into a little box? Leila was over the moon. You would have though she got Rock Band for the Wii.

The hamster is still alive. She has a new ball, but there's no space in Leila's room too roll around what with all her new crap from Santa. Her bedding is starting to stink a little, but its cool, we can hang with a stinky hamster. I tell you: if I had a bigger house, I would totally get a hamster. Even though I have sworn that I will never acquire another animal, I think a hamster is a really great pet. Yes, they are a little stinky, and you have to clean their cages, and some of them bite, but you don't have to walk them or bathe them or pay $70 every 10 weeks to have them groomed. They don't sleep with you and hog the covers and shed on your pillow, they don't get in fights with other neighborhood hamsters, and it doesn't matter if your kid is bored with them, hamsters don't care. They are perfectly happy to sleep all day and run on a wheel. AND! They only live, like, a year and a half, unlike the seemingly endless lives of my cats. You can still snuggle them, and pet them, but then you can get on with your life and you don't have to trick them by throwing a treat into the kitchen so that you can get out the front door unmolested. You don't have to take them camping, because they are fine being left alone for a few days. All in all, the perfect pet.

I mentioned Wii Rock Band, so I will leave you with this video of Leila singing a Beatles song. If I don't write again before New Year's, Happy New Year, and if you're in a funk, just deal with it.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Little Beasties

This is Pancetta.
We are hamster sitting for the holidays. Oddly, Pancetta's mommy is not a second grader or even a second grade teacher, but a full fledged adult, with a job and everything. Frustrated that she has neither the time nor the space to satisfy her dream of having a dog (and naming it Bacon,) she settled for a she-hamster and named her... Pancetta. You with me? Alright.

Pancetta came with her own coordinated accessories including the strawberry you see above that serves as her refuge from the world. The hamster version of a calgon bath and 500 thread-count sheets. She has a matching wheel, and a big vitamin lick shaped like an ice cream cone. Everything a girl needs. Pancetta also arrived with a clear purple ball that she likes to be placed in so that she may roam the rest of Leila's room. I wonder if she's drunk, the way she bangs into things, but I know that she has some sense because she paused for a while on the warm heater vent.

Perry the dog is not amused.

He sits at Leila's door and whines. He knows there's something in there that is smelly and alive, and he cannot stand not knowing what it is and what it would feel like to lick it all over. Also, he loves (and is submissive to) all animals, even animals that can't stand him. (This is absolutely true: he once rolled over for a duck that was crossing our path.)

Pancetta spent a little time bumping into things in her ball today, and made a little pee pee in there. I put her back in her home, and took the ball to the kitchen sink to wash it out. I set it to dry on the counter, and Perry just about had a conniption. I decided it would be a good idea to let him see and smell and lick and touch the ball - WITHOUT THE HAMSTER IN IT - so he could see that it was nothing to worry about, and get on with his life.

I was wrong. Wrong, wrong wrong. Perry is now the proud owner of a hamster ball, and I must now go out and buy Pancetta a new one. Within minutes, the opening to the ball was gnawed to a pulp. A little miscalculation on my part, but my intentions were pure. Pancetta has been very generous and forgiving about the whole thing. At least I assume so, but I can't really talk to her about it because she's barricaded in her strawberry. Maybe I'll write her a nice note.

Perry and his ball. Note the frayed edge of the hole.

In other unrelated animal news, there were 6 bird craps on my car today, and one big, white sloppy one on my back deck. What has gotten into these birds? And don't say that its pinecone bird feeders, because I haven't put mine up yet.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Visions of Sugar Plumbs and Pam

Okay, I'm back. This is what this blog would be like if I had a life. I've been busy making cookies, and throwing parties, and eating crab, and wrapping stuff, and shopping for stuff, and getting the dog his Christmas do done, blah blah etc etc.

None of that is at all interesting, so let me tell you about the dream I had last night. Its a little horror movie-ish, but oddly it wasn't a nightmare even though it sounds like one. Okay: I went to a clinic to give blood with Pam from The Office. (I had a little Tivo Office marathon yesterday) and she was giving her blood the regular way, but they told me they were going to take mine a different way; they were going to take it through my feet. I was not panicked at all. I wish my actual blood giving experiences were as panic free as my dream blood giving experiences. So I'm all, okay, and the next thing I know I'm sitting in the clinic wondering why I don't have a bag of blood next to me, so I look down and my feet - with shoes - are in bags that are tied around my ankles and filled with blood. Still no panic. I'm waiting for someone to take the bloody bags off, so I interrupt a meeting that's going on and I say, I'm really sorry for the interruption, but could someone take these bags of blood off my feet? And all the people look at me really weird, and then someone asks me who took my blood, so I describe the guy and they say, Oh, he's not from our clinic, he's from the mental hospital next door. I really think my brain was trying to construct a nightmare for me, but it just wouldn't stick; I was serenely calm. So I start walking around - yes walking, with blood bags sloshing around on my feet - and I'm looking for someone to take them off. I don't know why it didn't occur to me to just take them off myself. I suppose I was hoping that there was a procedural way that wouldn't make my blood donation a big waste. Finally, I find some guy from the clinic who seems like he'll help me, but he bends down and starts licking the floor. Also from the mental hospital next door, I guess. I follow him anyway, and he picks up some plastic orchids and starts shaking them at me screaming "REGRET! REGRET! REGRET!" At this point I woke up and started laughing. I thought it was just hilarious.

That had nothing to do with anything. Sorry. Leila had a sleep over the other night and the girls got up at 6:30 in the morning and put all her stuffed animals under the Christmas tree and played Christmas morning. Isn't that cute? Yeah, whatever, real cute.

I just don't have anything interesting to tell you. I'm going into the city for dinner tonight. I'm doing a load of laundry. You know what I need? I need a drying rack. I have no room for such a thing in my house, but in the winter I have so many things that need to be line dried, and they end up hanging all over everything in my house. I have socks in the bathroom, sweaters flat drying in the bedroom, tights on all the kitchen chairs, its annoying. Alright, enough is enough. REGRET!

Thursday, December 17, 2009


So Leila got up to go to the bathroom at 1:45 in the morning, decided she wasn't sleepy, and turned on the light and read for the rest of the night. Rob found her awake when he got up at 6:30. Freak. She's cruising on five hours of sleep. The odd thing is, she's been fine all day, and I've been a wreck. I am so sleepy! I set aside some in my busy schedule for a nap, and I'm still tired. I can't actually believe I've typed this much, to tell you the truth. I must be a good typist because in my mind my fingers are going a;powne;tlktda;sdlitnads;lktosntoiasnt. This could get dangerous.

Tomorrow, I have to break the week-long boycott and go to the grocery store. I'm having company on Saturday night, and I suppose I have to feed them. Also, Leila's class holiday party is tomorrow, and I'm on the hook for that. We're making pinecone bird feeders, and tonight, in my zombie-like state, I will hot glue gun twine hangers to twenty pinecones. Exciting, right? I got an email from a friend who just spent a month in a buddhist retreat in Rio and did and saw all these amazing things, and I wanted to email him back and say Oh yeah? Well, I went to the farmer's market and found little gem lettuce, and I walked the dog, and yesterday I wrapped some presents. So there.

I just overheard Leila say to Rob, Today we are going to put on a play called Mess with the Bulls. This is a game where she pokes Rob until he wrestles her to the ground. As long as they're out of my hair...

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Mother of the Year?

Okay, I totally get the Mother of the Year award. All you other bitches, back off, because I win.

This afternoon, L and I are making Christmas cookies. Side note: I love sugar cookies with icing. I think they're my favorites. I don't make them very often because, frankly, they're a pain in the ass. You have to make the dough, chill the dough, roll the dough, use the cookie cutters, roll out the dough again, ice the suckers, and then you feel like puking because you ate your weight in dough scraps. Another side note: The other day I was bitching and squawking about how all the Christmas decorations and baking and cards and general messiness of the holidays is a big fat drag (using language much more appropriate for a seven year-old, and much less cynical) and L asks me, So then, what's your favorite holiday? Um, Christmas.

Anyway, so we're baking cookies today, and Leila was already dreading the hour that the dough has to chill in the fridge, because that hour may as well be a decade when you're seven, and I said No problem, I have some leftover dough in the fridge, we'll use that while we wait for the new stuff to chill. So we make the new dough and I wrap it up, and get the old dough out, and it dawns on me that this dough is really old. I look at the recipe and it says "store wrapped dough in the refrigerator for two days or in the freezer for one month." The last time we made cookies was... Halloween. This dough has been in the refrigerator for two months, and it has raw egg in it. This isn't the part where I win Mother of the Year, this is just the part where I'm a lame housewife who falsely believes that the refrigerator is capable of doing magic tricks. The part where I win The Big One, is when Leila, in denial about the wait for the new dough, says Why don't I taste it, to be sure its bad? And I go... Okay!

I let her eat a piece of two month old refrigerated cookie dough, and she just about ripped her tongue out. I thanked her for taking one for the team. What kind of person does this to a child? I console myself with the fact that she had already licked the beater and the bowl, and is on her way to an icing and sprinkle induced fit where her eyeballs will turn into psychedelic swirls like in cartoons. Right now she's in her room playing the roll of the kid practicing piano AND the mom, saying Great job, honey! I guess that's what I sound like when I praise her skills while really reading about Jon Gosselin on TMZ. Is this better or worse than catching her playing with a broken beer bottle at the park when she was four? Hard to say.

You know what else? I went to the effing super market five times last week, which is five more times that I'd like, so this week I decided I'm not going. We will eat what is already in this house, we will ration, we will subsist on two month-old cookie dough, but I am not setting foot in a grocery store. Maybe Friday I'll have to, but that's it. I got so desperate, I ate leftover nasty casserole that had been in the fridge for a few days. It was still okay, and it didn't kill me, obviously, but it was risky.

I think the dough is done chilling now, and we can get this show on the road. I have to steel myself for lip biting that must be done while L is making the cookie cutter shapes on the rolled-out dough too far apart. I'm breathing. In. Out.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Decking the Halls with Balls

Decorating a Christmas tree with an almost-8-year old is havoc for a control freak. I have been saying to myself silently, in my head, Calm down, you can move it after she goes to bed. Just calm the eff down. And of all the fragile things that she took out of the box, I was the one who broke an ornament. It was a good one, too. Oh well, easy come, easy go. Usually, the Christmas tree and all the house decorations and outside lights go up all in the same day, but this year things got spread out, so it seems like a never-ending process. I have been tree-decorating for over and hour, and I still have more to do, but I need a break. Is there a law that says I need to put every ornament I own in the tree? Even the ugly ones? And why -WHY? - do I have so many damned heavy ornaments that need just the right branch? I have vowed never to buy a heavy ornament ever again. In fact, I haven't gotten any new ornaments, heavy or light, in a long time. I think the ones I have now are the ones I'll have forever. That's depressing. The same Crate and Barrel sparkly balls: forever.

Here are my faves, in no particular order:

One of the afore-mentioned Crate and Barrel sparkly balls, circa 1996. We had credit at C&B left over from wedding gifts, and got 6 of them, all with different designs.

This is a dragon fly made out of panty-hose, some kind of coloring, wire, with plastic jewels stuck on it. Leila made it in preschool. Usually most of the crap she makes in school gets thrown out when she's not looking, but I love this panty-ho dragon fly, and I'm sure there must have been dragon flies in the barn where Jesus was born, so it is Christmasy, no matter what you say.

This is the last ornament I bought myself. It was from The Container Store, and I thought it was the cutest little moose, until someone, weeks later, pointed out that, duh, its a reindeer. Sometimes, I'm really stupid.

I took this fake bird off a wreath at my old work. I love this bird, but I think I'm the only one in my family who does. If I remember correctly, one of our Christmas traditions is for Rob to say, Do we have to put that fucking bird in the tree again? and, of course, I insist that it be front and center because I love it. Its a pretty life-sized bird, about seven or so inches from the tips of its wings to the end of its tail. Its no small feat to find a good spot for it. I also have a small bird house and a small bird nest with a little cardinal in it (probably also lifted from wreaths from the same office party,) that get set in the tree. Its a tree! Birds go in trees! I just don't see the problem.

This might be my favorite. The picture makes it look like its just an average yellow ball, but its actually a GIANT yellow ball, about five inches in diameter, and the bright yellow paint was swirled around the inside and makes a cool, swirly pattern. Swirly is a very good word. It perfectly describes my religious beliefs: Swirly. Its like a big, bright sun, right in the middle of the tree. The birds need sunlight.

I wish I had a picture of the ugliest ornament I ever had, but I finally threw it out a few years ago. It was a plastic Santa head with clear plastic icicle coming out of the bottom. It looked like Santa's head on a pike. It was disturbing. It occurs to me now that this would have been an appropriate place to put a picture of the whole tree, but I didn't take one so its too late. Maybe tomorrow, when the boxes and the tissue are put away, and the needles are swept up, and my camera batteries are recharged.

I was going to follow up on my post the other day about thinking of one thing Rob could do to improve my experience of our marriage and I came up with something. Only, he doesn't want me to tell you what it is. That's what I get for being considerate and asking first. Suffice it to say that he has made the change, and my life has been improved by a fraction of a percentage point, so that's something. Sometimes I think he just says no to random stuff to prove that he can, that I only get my way most of the time and not all of the time, so I asked him if this was one of those random times, and he said that it wasn't, and that he just didn't need my readers to know what it was I asked him to change. So, the fact that he doesn't want me to tell you can lead you to infer that it is either gross, embarrassing, or both. Let your imagination run wild!

He did give me an early Christmas gift, though: we went to see Brandi Carlile live on Saturday night and sat in the fourth row! It was awesome, and a great present. Someone is getting extra starch in his panties this week!

Thursday, December 10, 2009

My Moment of Fame

Today was the opposite of yesterday. I did exactly what I told you I was going to do, and added a little something special.

I made the biscotti (but I still have to chocolate dip them) and I went to the super market - AGAIN - to get the ingredients for L's class' snazzy snack tomorrow (don't ask, you don't really want to know) and while I was there, I bought myself some crab. Rob doesn't really care for crab. He'll eat it, but he is somehow immune to the sheer pleasure of picking the meat and drinking wine and making a evening of it. Maybe its because wine gives him an unbearable headache, but having crab for dinner is one of my favorite things, and he always pees on my parade. And cheese fondue; that's another one of my favorites that he poo-poos. So I bought two crabs, one for lunch, one for later, and I sat at my kitchen table, listened to the radio, and picked crab meat. I dipped it in my favorite mayonnaise/curry sauce, and saved a crab's worth of meat for a snack. Rob is not allowed to have any. He can eat the damn sweet potatoes that are still in the fridge from Thanksgiving. I also bought myself the Vanity Fair magazine with Meryl Streep on the cover. I tried to read it while picking my crab, but that is really ill advised.

When I was done with my crab, I sat down on the couch and started the article, but I fell asleep in the middle and took one delicious nap. When I woke up, I finished the article, and started in on the new Oprah magazine that came today (on time, I might add.) Now I'm feeling frustrated and dark. Oprah is just so much pressure. In every magazine, its LOSE WEIGHT! SECURE YOUR FINANCES! BUY THESE CLOTHES! LIVE YOUR BEST LIFE! NOW, BITCH!!!!! This is not a best life kind of day. I'm in a mood. In a funk. I need to get out of here. I need to stop making biscotti and melting chocolate. I need to find some new energy, some outside influence, I need to jack up my chi.

But here is another thing that I was WAY too excited about. I listen to this podcast almost every day. I'd like to tell you that I'm learning spanish or listening to Eckhart Tolle tell my how to live without fear or whatever, but its a podcast of the morning radio people let off the FCC leash a little bit, talking about sex and porn and coffee enemas, and I am sort of, I guess, addicted to it. So the other day, they were going on and on about this one topic, and I felt compelled to email them with my point of view. Yes, for a few minutes, I was that person, carefully crafting an email to the radio people about a topic that could not be less important. Well: while I was picking my crab, THEY READ MY EMAIL ON THE AIR. That's not even the best part: one of the guys interrupted the girl while she was reading it and she said, wait for it, Hold on, the way this is written is really funny. A SEMI FAMOUS PERSON THOUGHT I WAS FUNNY! That's all I ever really want in this life, just to be funny. I'm not going to be thin, or a genius inventor, or a big philanthropist, or cure cancer, so I may as well be funny. The stupid part is that I should have signed the email with my blog address, but I didn't. Stupid. If you want to hear it, although, really, why would you, listen to the 12/9 podcast on this link, its 13 minutes and 19 seconds in. God, I'm pitiful.

Off to melt chocolate for these goddam effing biscotti.

***ADDENDUM*** I'm done okay? Now get off my back!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Walking in a Shredded Coconut Wonderland

I bet the kitchen in this house is clean...

I need a glass of wine and to not listen to the goddam Nutcracker anymore. Its been Nutcracker central here since L went on that field trip, and now she wants a leotard for Christmas. I just can't listen to it ONE MORE TIME. I am sure I'll turn violent if I do.

Check out what I did today: I was Susie Homemaker on 'roids. I stripped the beds and washed the sheets, I returned some rainboots, went to the supermarket, decorated a gingerbread house with L and my mom, made two batches of orange/almond biscotti, and a casserole. Its a god-awful casserole too, but I love it; broccoli, left over turkey from Thanksgiving, and a can of Campbells cream of mushroom soup mixed with mayonnaise and curry powder. Awesome. Rob hates it, and I don't care. He'll eat it and like it, and then he'll clean the kitchen.

My kitchen is now a mess. I've complained before that my house is small, but the size of the kitchen doesn't really bother me unless I've got a couple of things going on in there like I do right now. The biscotti are cooling on a wire rack right next to a pan of water that was used to steam the broccoli, my to-do list is sitting on the toaster next to a damp dish towel and an advent calendar, Leila's lunchbox is in the mix, next to a zested orange and my sunglasses, and the kitchen table is covered with dry gingerbread house "glue" and grated coconut. This is the time of day when I just want to turn my back on the whole mess and go to bed early. The sheets are not back on the bed yet, though, and I still have to melt some chocolate and dip the biscotti in it.

I honestly don't understand how the alpha moms do it. In the immortal words of Sissy Spacek in Coal Miner's Daughter, one of the best movies ever made, I'm about ready to die. I am reading a really good book right now, not a vampire book (although I'm fairly certain I had a sexy vampire dream last night which may or may not have included Daniel Day Lewis) and tomorrow I'm going to sit on my ass and read it. Bored Housewife has done enough. I do need to make one more batch of biscotti tomorrow, though, but after that, its all ass-sitting, all the time.

But now, I have to leave you kind people and return to the kitchen, where I've been all goddam day, and create some order where there currently is none. Leila's teacher wants all the parents to make two dozen cookies for the holiday party so the kids can have a cookie exchange, and if I can't change her mind on that I may have to kill myself.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

She Got the Blues

And if the first movie I posted doesn't get nominated, I'm sure this one will win a VMA.

Oscar Contender, For Sure, Yo

Okay! I finished! Leila's room was finished a little while ago, and I didn't get around to finishing my movie, so it got messy again (but not as messy as before!) and so I've cleaned it up again, and here we are! My MASTERPIECE! My crazy iMovie skills!

Monday, December 7, 2009

How the New York Times has Almost Ruined my Day

I have a long list of silly little things to do, and when the list is long I get housewife paralysis and can't seem to do anything at all. I've already been shopping, and I've been back to the dentist to have him look at my filling and tell me that the pain will indeed go away, and now I'm home, strangled by what to do next. I've made phone calls, refreshed the facebook, pet the dog, and now here I sit.

I read a great NYT article this morning (here it is, its long, but its worth it) and, before I read it, Rob had been telling me about it, and I was going to write about how there are ten things I could think of to improve Rob's experience of our marriage, but I can't think of a single thing he could do to improve my experience of our marriage. Of course there are things that, were I painting the perfect man, I would change, like making him George Clooney, but I can't think of a single thing that he actually has control over that I'd want him to change. I told him I would work on it today and get back to him. I don't actually want to ask him to change anything, because then, to be fair, I would have to commit to changing something and God knows I don't want to do that. Let me just get through the holidays, and I'll consider making a bigger effort in the new year. No, my challenge is to think of one thing today that I would want him to do differently if we were at the bargaining table... and I got nothin'. Last night, he was bitching about me not hanging up the jackets or whatever, and he said, in his smart-alecky way, You know, if you only made a little effort... and I said, I do; I make a very little effort. Ha Ha, I'm so funny.

So I read the whole article, while not doing the five nagging things on my to-do list, and it was very engaging reading, but instead of being inspired to write about what I thought the article would make me want to write about, I got caught up in the serious, all-too-relatable parts, and now I'm worrying on my marriage. Not worried about my marriage, just fixating on those few little areas that, if I pay too much attention to them inside my head, I will lose a whole day to them and wind up in a funk, and later, when Rob gets home, he'll be all What's with you? and I'll be all, Six years ago, you did this thing that really hurt my feelings, and we now have to rehash the whole thing all night long. And he'll be all, Someone, please kill me. I will invite drama into my life, all because I spent too much alone time ruminating on the one or two issues, that will never - NEVER - be resolved in this relationship. And they're not even deal-breakers!

Every relationship has those couple of things that are never going to be solved to anyone's satisfaction. If you think you don't have those couple of things, you do, you just haven't poked them with a stick in a while. At this point, Rob and I only fight about one thing, and its the same fight every time, and it ends the same way every time. Its about who is the better parallel parker. I say its me, and he thinks its him, and he is wrong and will always be, forever and ever, amen.

Saturday, December 5, 2009


Guess what I did last night? Its pretty amazing and special, and you'll never guess; I woke up in the middle of the night, and my mouth was closed. I was breathing through the two holes in my head that have been useless for the last however many days! Isn't that exciting? I haven't had to brush my teeth (and tongue and lips and roof of my mouth) and swirl listerine around in there first thing when I get up to cleanse the mouth-breathing scum! I never appreciate breathing more than when a cold is almost over. The universe has smiled on me, and now its saying, Okay, quit your whining and put up your damn Christmas lights.

So let me tell you what happened yesterday, during the day, while my nose was still filled with cement. We are dog sitting Mosely, a little sweetheart of a dog. After I had taken the kid to school and walked the dogs, I came home and said, eff it, and went back to bed. I slept off the nyquil haze until around 10:30, then got up and started puttering around. I had to drive on a field trip for Leila's class, The Nutcracker, and I had to be at the school at 11:40. So I'm sitting at the computer, obsessively refreshing facebook, and I hear Mose make the most horrendous sound you've ever heard come out of a dog. It was like a the sound you really want to make when you have post nasal drip, but you don't because its too disgusting and your throat might fall out. He makes this sound for a while, then he stops. Then he starts again, and this episode is followed by him standing stock-still in them middle of the living room for five minutes, moving nothing but his eyes, and trembling. I start mildly freaking out that he is going to hork something up while Rob is at work, because I do not deal well with animal by products, so I call Rob at work, and he says, What's the worst that can happen: you'll come back from the field trip and he'll be dead. Thanks, dude, you're awesome. Mose starts making the sound again, and standing still and shivering some more, so I call my friend who I unfairly think knows all answers to all medical questions, man or beast. I hold the phone to Mose so she can hear the sound, and tell her about the still-standing and the shaking, and she says, It sounds like he's having a stroke, and he needs attention right away. Holy shitballs, this dog is going to die on my watch, and his mom is in Michigan, and I have to go to the Nutcracker, and HE'S GOING TO DIE!

I jump into hysterical action. I call Leila's teacher and make sure there are enough drivers that she can stuff the kids assigned to me in another car, and she can. I didn't really want to see the Nutcracker, anyway. Then I start calling local vets until someone says I can bring him down right away. So I get his leash, and Mose looks sprightly for a moment, bounding over to me because he thinks its walky time, but then he starts honking like a goose, and we're back to square one. I drive to the vet, all the while saying soothing things to him, calling him every term of doggy endearment you can think of so he wont die in my car. I fill out forms, I bring him into the exam room and... he's fine. $93 dollars later, we think he has a piece of grass stuck in his throat. He may have kennel cough or a sinus thing, so we'll put him on antibiotics just in case, but he's a healthy dog. And the vet cleaned his eye-boogers since I can only bring myself to clean the eye-boogers of my own animals.

Now, don't get me wrong, I'm super glad he's not dying. The last thing his owner needs this week is a dead dog, and I have a cold so obviously I'm in no mood, and if any animal is going to die it really should be my old, cranky cat. But now I'm all keyed up, my adrenaline is pumping, I've missed the field trip, and Mose is climbing on my lap while I'm sitting in the parked car, looking at me like, I like your car! Your hair looks awesome! I call my friend back, and she's all, Oh, sorry I freaked you out by telling you he was having a stroke, and I'm all, yeah, whatever, thats the last time I call you for medical advice about anything, (only that's completely untrue, and I'll probably call her today about this annoying bump on the inside of my cheek.)

Still, all's well that ends well. Mose was till honking last night before we went to bed, and I was thinking, c'mon, man! Hork it up! Rob is home! Hork on, my brother! but there's no evidence of horkage this morning. He's quiet and happy, laying in front of our bedroom door, waiting for Rob to get up. I take him to the vet while he's dying, but he still likes Rob best. Jeez.

Perry and Mosely, after the ordeal

Thursday, December 3, 2009

I've got a Cold in my Nose

I have a cold, god dammit. So annoying. Don't you hate it when you have a cold, you take some cold medicine to make it through the night, and because the raw throat, scummy lips and drooling from all the mouth breathing aren't enough, some time in the middle of the night your nose starts to leak? You're completely congested, so there's no real movement in or out, and any amount of blowing doesn't seem to make any difference, but somewhere around three in the morning, you feel something wet dripping from your nose. You don't want to blow, because the first blow after a few hours of not blowing is accompanied by a little cough, and you don't want to wake up the man, or the dogs. So you grab some kleenex and dab at your nose, and now that you are awake, you are aware of how raw your throat feels, and how your mouth tastes like ass, and you have to fall asleep all over again, praying that the nyquil has not worn off.

When the alarm goes off at 6:30, you feel like there's extra gravity under your bed and you don't want to get up more than you have not wanted to get up ever, but you kind of do want to get up so you can go brush your teeth, and tongue and lips and the roof of your mouth. But you know that if you get up, the dogs will be awake and start making their needs known, so you just lay there and try to ignore all the gross little things that have happened to your face over night.

You know what makes this scenario even better? Is when you're seven year old daughter decides to wake up super early, and read OUT LOUD in her room. It was just after 6, with a half hour left to go until the alarm went off, and she's in her bed, lights on, reading Ivy and Bean, full voice, with feeling and probably gesticulation. And now the dogs are up. Waking up at 3 a.m. with leaky nose is one thing, but waking up in the sweet half hour before the alarm goes off is another altogether. So I'm laying there, not wanting to get up (see previous paragraph) but now I'm getting mad, and there's no way you can go back to sleep when you're mad. So I get out of bed, stomp into her room, and tell her to shut the fuck up. Of course I didn't really say that, but that was the sentiment. She apologized up and down this morning, but that don't get mommy her half hour of precious sleep back, does it, little girl?

I have to say, though, as annoying as having a cold may be, compared to the Big Sick of 2009, its no big deal. I figure, if I could handle a crisis feeling the way I do, then I'm not that sick, and for that I am grateful. You know what else is awesome? I only have to leave the house one more time today, and I can stay in the rest of the day and sleep or watch TV or whatever. The kid has been walked to school, the doggies have both been walked and were both business men (meaning they both pooped) a dark load is in the washer, and I am free and clear for a few hours. I'm almost out of kleenex, and that may be a problem, but other than that, this will be a good day for a cold.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

What is Wrong with People?

Okay, I have two things I want to talk about today, and neither one of them include vampires. At least I don't think so.

1) Have you watched the show Hoarders? Oh my God. Its so compelling, but so revolting. I can't not watch it. Just like its predecessor, Intervention, about addiction, its these people who are, frankly (and I don't think I'm being uncharitable here,) effing train wrecks. I joke about how I'm a pig with my pink mildew in the shower, and how I sleep under stacks of clothes at the foot of my bed while inhaling cat hair in my sleep, but these people are not pigs. I mean, they are, for sure, but they're also sad, sick people who need so much help. Its most heartbreaking when there are children involved like last night, and you see a little tiny kid picking his way into a room with a foot of trash on the floor. I can't stop watching it. Apparently, 3 million Americans are afflicted with compulsive hoarding, and I am so glad I am not one of them. Its good TV, though, I'll tell you that much. A double dose of Intervention and Hoarders right before you go to sleep is enough to give you nightmares. This one woman on the show last night had an armchair under so much garbage that it decomposed and broke in pieces when the cleaners (people with stomachs of steel, I don't know how they do it) touched it. Ugh.

2) I went to the playground today (I know, that's shocking as I NEVER go to playground. Bo-ring) and I had nothing to do while L ran around, and I noticed the woman on the next bench was reading the new People magazine, the one with Oprah on the cover. I thought to myself, Hey, maybe when she's clearly done and puts it down, I'll ask if I can borrow it. So I start looking at L's library books (all about sharks and dolphins and other marine life; I'm so over it) and then I notice the People magazine woman get up, with the magazine, and start walking toward the trash can. This time, I am saying to myself, out loud but not loud enough that people could hear me and think I was a psychopath, No. No no no. Don't do it! NO!

Bitch threw the People magazine in the trash. Its still on news stands! Its brand new! How does someone DO THAT? I had half a mind to go over and dig it out of the trash, but its not like the trash can at the library or something, its the playground, and its filled with dirty diapers and melted popsicles and bags of dog poop (hopefully its in bags) and all other kinds of nasty-ass things that kids create and parents throw away at the playground. When L was tiny and still learning to use the toilet, she crapped her pants at the playground and I threw her underpants with the poo still in them right into the trash can. I did not have a bag. This is what parents have to resort to sometimes, okay? I wasn't going to walk around with a poo-filled panty until I found a more suitable receptacle. Anyway, I was shocked. Who throws People magazine away? You can always find someone who is more than happy to take it off your hands, and then they'll pass it on to someone else until it ends up in a doctors office a year from now with the cross word done and the coupons ripped out, and you still enjoy looking at it. Crazy. Oh, and don't even get me started on how she didn't save it for recycling. Honestly.

Monday, November 30, 2009


Hey guys. I haven't been here for a few days, damn that Thanksgiving, so here I am, and I want to talk a little more about vampires. Only a little, so bare with me.

OK: I think this Bella/Edward thing is really dysfunctional, and not only because he's a vampire and she isn't, but it just smacks of a yucky misogynistic relationship where the guy holds all the cards, and the girl is at the whim of the guy. And his vampire coven. What is in this for her? She loves him, she sacrifices for him, and she gets no satisfaction, not in book one, anyway. She can't even make out with the guy. She has to abandon her home and family for him, she only gets information out of him in dribs and drabs, and he is always faster, stronger, and smarter. She would never be able to win an argument! He does a lot of scowling, and scoffing and snarling at her. He can't have sex with her, because he might kill her, he can't make out with her because he might kill her, and, frankly, he might kill her anyway because he's a blood-thirsty vampire. We're supposed to respect him because he's not killing and maiming his girlfriend. No, I don't like it. If my daughter was in relationship with someone like him, even if he wasn't a vampire, I'd run an intervention.

That's all I have to say about vampires for the day, except to break it to the vampire-loving world that this will be my last Twilight book. I think I'm over it.

Did you all have a nice Thanksgiving? I had three nice Thanksgivings, and here's the thing: my refrigerator is so crammed with leftovers, I could have three more Thanksgivings. I do not want to touch any Thanksgiving food for at least 361 days. I hate to throw food away, but I cannot handle eating this stuff one more time. Is it better to let the edible food rot in the fridge before you throw it out, so that you have no choice but to throw it out, or is it ok to just throw it out now, while someone could still eat it, but no one wants to?

We took our family Christmas picture yesterday, at the beach (that's what living in California is all about.) It came out ok. I didn't set the camera to the best picture quality setting, so people who receive this card might see my multiple chins all pixelated. It might be better that way. My husband insists that we are all in the picture, rather than just the kid and the dog, but I think it just shows people who get the card but don't see us often (or ever) that I have gained yet more weight, and that Rob is yet more bald.


Thursday, November 26, 2009

I Give Thanks for Vampires

Happy Thanksgiving
Today is Thanksgiving and instead of talking about giving thanks and eating and the stuffing I'm going to make (with pomegranate seeds!) I want to talk about... Vampires

Upon the recommendation of several friends, I am now reading Twilight, the first book. Never seen the movie(s) don't know a thing about it except that vampire mania is sweeping the nation and I am very, very behind. I started the book yesterday. I'm now on page 260. I read the first 236 pages yesterday, waiting, very patiently I thought, for a sex scene. I have now been informed that a) there is no sex until book four and b) I'm a dirty old woman for looking for a sex scene in a book written for the young adult market. I may have forgotten for a moment that I am not a young adult and this book was not necessarily written for me and my personal needs.

I want to say that this book is cheesy and bad and lame, and it is. For example, here is one of my favorite parts so far: "His voice was guarded. I noticed that he wore no jacket himself, just a light gray knit V-neck shirt with long sleeves." (here it comes) "Again, the fabric clung to his perfectly muscled chest. It was a colossal tribute to his face that it kept my eyes away from his body." And then there's no sex. So, yes, its lame, or, rather, perfect for the audience for which it was written, but the thing is, I'm on page 260, and I'm still reading it. I will probably finish it tomorrow (damn Thanksgiving is getting in the way of my finishing it today) and then I will want to read the next book, and the next, so I can finally - FINALLY! - get to the sex part. It better be a good pay off, too, with all the descriptions of high school biology class I've had to endure.

Rob asked me to give him a synopsis of what I'd read so far, so I told him it was a high school romance between a new-in-town girl and a beautiful boy who turns out to be a vampire, and there's a werewolf on the horizon somewhere. He said, "that's it?" Yeah, that's it. And no sex.

Also, I heard a review of the new Twilight movie on Fresh air and it cracked me up. Here's the transcript; "Then two werewolves fight over her. Then werewolves fight two vampires over her. Then a vampire fights a whole slew of other vampires over her. Then a lovesick vampire fights a lovesick werewolf over her. Bella saves Edward, Edward saves Bella, and the Native American werewolf Jacob, tries to save Bella from Edward. Jacob does make it a kinky triangle. Whereas Edward is an aesthete with white-marble skin and the highest brow in movies, Jacob is a dark and hairy biker dude with a very low brow and a trapezius the size of a watermelon." Awesome.

We are dog-sitting Mosely this weekend.
Here are Mose and Perry at the front door,
looking for vampires.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

The Huff

You know what that little stinker did?

She gets all P.O.ed at me for rushing her in the morning; for rousting her from her beauty sleep, for nagging her to get dressed, for trying to keep her focussed so that she can be on time for school. I reminded her again this morning that I'm not late for anything, and she's the one who will have to go to the office and tell them why she's late. (not that she's ever had to do that, and do you know why? Because I MAKE SURE SHE'S ON TIME!) While she is glaring at me, with a look she is perfecting for the teen age years, I am doing a big load of dishes, turning on the dishwasher, making her lunch, making her breakfast, putting her homework where she can see it and not forget it, letting the dog in and out and in and out, getting dressed, brushing my own damn teeth (forget about my hair) and she is yelling at me because Perry needs a belly rub RIGHT NOW and she can't possible take a break to put on her shoes.

We finally get out the door, and queen bee decides she's going to freeze me out. Can you believe that shit? She walks ten, then fifteen paces ahead while I am dealing with the dog, waiting for him to pee and sniff all the thrilling smells that have appeared since yesterday, and that little daughter of mine is walking on ahead, not looking back. She's in a huff. Oh, she's in a huff? I'LL SHOW HER WHAT A REAL HUFF LOOKS LIKE!

She waits for me to cross the street (her zeal to punish me apparently does not include a deathwish) and then she takes off again. By the time I hook the dog's leash to the tree outside the school, she's no where in sight. I had a mind to just go home and let her sweat it out, but if I did that, then today would be the day that we had a massive earthquake and I couldn't get to her, and there would be flooding and California would drop off into the sea and I'd be so guilty because I didn't hug her goodbye. So I walk to her classroom, without her, without any purpose whatsoever. She's in there taking off her backpack and she gives me a smile, one that starts as "wasn't I so funny this morning?" but quickly turns into, " Oh shit." She says, "Are you mad?" and I say, "What do you think?" and she starts rattling off apologies: "I'm sorry mommy, I'm really sorry, I'm so sorry." blah-didi-blah, and I give her a half hearted hug and kiss and leave in my own huff.

The nerve.

One of these days I'm going to tell her teacher that she is going to be late, and I'm going to let her set the pace in the morning. I will tell her once, maybe twice to get out of bed, and not nag at all the rest of the morning, maybe periodically letting her know what time it is. Then we'll be really late, and I'll walk her to the office and she'll have to face the music. Ungrateful little...

Tuesday, November 24, 2009


I still feel a little drunk, if you can believe that. My friend said that xanax may not be the drug for me, but given this lovely, sleepy, tipsy feeling that I have at 9 in the morning, 21 hours after I took the little pink pill, I think it is EXACTLY the drug for me.

The dental appointment went as well as could be expected, and other than Dr. Adorable having to firmly tell me to keep my hands down, I was well behaved. My jaw is achy this morning, so no BJs for me. Darn it.

Here's another thing, though, something that killed my soul a tiny teeny bit. I was telling Leila about how my mom never walked me to school and got to stay in her bathrobe while I dragged my ass to the school bus, and she said, "Maybe today you could just walk me to the edge of campus and I'll go in by myself." Then she saw the look on my face, the look that said, "My little baby is leaving me!!!!!" and she said, "Tomorrow it will all be back to normal, I promise." That's when I started to feel like a loser. She's in second grade, I think she can make it from the edge of campus to her class room. She could walk all the way to school by herself, with her eyes closed, I'm sure, but this is our special time when we walk the dog and talk and joke around and watch the sun come up and look at the egrets and I give her a hug and a kiss and its all warmy and lovey.

We compromised: I told her that I like to see my friends on the campus in the morning, so I walked her to the lunch tables, and she walked the rest of the way. The minute we were at the very far edge of the lunch tables, she hugged me and said, "Bye, Mommy! Wish me luck!" as if there was a chance that she would become disoriented and lost in the fifty feet that separate her classroom from where we were standing.

This is the beginning. Soon, she'll want me to leave at the edge of campus. Then it will be at the entrance to the park. But that is as far as it will go until at least forth grade. I will not be shoved aside before then! Maybe I should relish this freedom, but I don't. I mean, as long as I have to get up and make her lunch and get dressed anyway, I may as well hang out with her as long as possible until that second grade classroom gobbles her up for the day, right?

I think I'll watch some home movies and lament the passing of days, now...

Monday, November 23, 2009

I can just barely see that I am here...


I am high on xanax right now after my take-two dentist appointment. My cavities are filled, I was a good girl and didn't smack my cute dentist this time. He did call me a spaz, and I like that about him.

Here are two funny things I noticed to day:

1) There was a guy in the line at the grocery store buying 5 quarts of ice cream and seven boxes of frosted flakes. I hope he gets some xanax before they fill his soon-to-be cavities.

2) I forget what the other one was, I'm too loaded.

3) I didn't win the lottery UH-GIN. Why does the universe hate me so?

See you tomorzzzzzzzzzz..........

Friday, November 20, 2009

Warning: Bitchfest Ahead

I'm feeling a little crappy about my house today. Let me start by saying that, yes, I am grateful to have a house, to not be under a sub prime mortgage, to have bought my house when I did, to have the neighbors I have, to live so close to the school, blah blah etc. etc. but I don't come here to express my gratitude, I come here to bitch so that's what I'm going to do.

My house is small. Really small. 925 square feet with a ridiculous, kludged floorplan. You walk in the front door, you see the toilet. Welcome home! 95% of the time, I'm okay with the smallness. My electric bill is low, I save a lot of money not buying books and CDs and other stuff because I have no where to put them, and my family and I are always together, even when we don't want to be. I don't have to wonder what Leila is doing in her room across the house or upstairs because her room is smack in the middle of the house and she can't hide from me. If I have to, I can straighten up the whole house in half an hour. I only have one toilet to clean (okay, I have two, but I can't remember the last time I cleaned the other one, or used it.) The single biggest thing I do for the environment is live in a tiny house. At least that's what I tell myself when I'm feeling righteous. The environmental part is really just an unintended outcome of buying this house when we were young, and then no being able to afford to move.

Last night, Rob and I were sitting around chatting about all the stuff we have to do before Christmas, and he goes, "Where are we going to put the Christmas tree?" We have this new sectional sofa now, and I love it, but there is no longer a natural place for a Christmas tree. I know, those of you who are eco-hounds will tell me that I shouldn't get a Christmas tree anyway because they're evil and a waste and they melt the ice caps and whatever, but I am getting a tree and that's all there is to it. I put all those damn ornaments away every year with tissue and loving care, and I'm not just leaving them in the box. There are rituals to attend to, people! I have stockings! Snow globes!

The only place that it can go is where my office currently is. Calling it an office is really euphemistic. Its the smallest desk I could find, next to a small book shelf and its shoved into a corner of my living room. It works fine for me, its all I really need, but I'm going to have to dismantle the whole thing (desk, printer, files, do dads, post its, chair) and put it all in the garage for three or four weeks during Christmas. Jeez. There is literally no other place in my house that it can go for those weeks, that's how small this place is.

Also, I'm selling the side table and coffee table that were in here before the sofa, but we realized that we use the side table to put the Christmas tree on. We get a smaller tree and put it on a table with a tree skirt around it so we can save a little dough. I don't want to pay for an eight-foot tree. So now I may have to keep that stupid table under the house year 'round, just to be able to put the tree on it for three weeks out of the year. Honestly.

And another thing! We were never going to stay in this house, and our next house was going to have a dining room. I compromised on a dining room when we bought this place, and Rob compromised on a gas stove. Well, he's got is gas stove now, but where's my dining room? I'll tell you where: in my freakin' dreams!!! Of all the second generation grown kids that make up my family who could host Thanksgiving, I'm the only one who wants to, and I'm the only one who can't. These are not the kind of people who will eat off plates perched on their knees, and I can't fit all those people in here unless some of them eat in the bathroom, and the children stay in the yard.

I'm not asking for a lot. We have two ten year-old cars and I love at least one of them. I don't want to buy a new one until I absolutely have to. I only get a bikini wax twice a year (much to the chagrin of the few who are forced to see me without pants) vcb': (Perry the dog just walked across my laptop and typed "vcb':" I thought I'd leave it in. He says hi.) I get my hair cut by a friend, I do my own nails, I am not an extravagant person! Is a dining room too much to ask? Apparently it is, because the only way I'm going to get one is if I completely redo the back two thirds of my house, or move, neither of which I can afford unless I go get a full time job which would totally get in the way of all the on-my-ass sitting I have planned.

I bought another lottery ticket today, like a lemming, like a rube, and I'm not going to win, not now and not ever, and I will never have a dining room, and I will never be able to host Thanksgiving, or Christmas dinner, or any of the dinner parties in between. I should just get rid of all that china I got for my wedding. It just sits there, in the cabinet, taking up space, mocking me. Plus, my back deck is completely useless, and my bedroom is a shit hole. I'm going to be 40 next year. 40! And I still sleep in a room that belongs in, like, a dorm.

So click on those ads, people! I will either save up all my ad-clicking money for my remodel, or I will use it to drown my sorrows about living in the cutest little Kleenex box you ever did see.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

I have Earned my Title Today

Another tough one for Bored Housewife today. A good friend took me out to breakfast for my birthday, we had our eyebrows done, and while I waited for her I told her 600 times not to let me buy any make up, then I bought some make up, then I came home and did Wii fit for 19 minutes, took a shower, and commenced the time-killing portion of the day where I stare at Facebook.

I'm not really into the whole housewife duties thing this week. I can, on occasion, get into it. Don't look at me like that! Its true! I'll get a wild hair to clean the bathroom or do laundry or cook something, but this week is not one of those weeks. I haven't made dinner, I've done one load of laundry that took me three days to fold and its still not put away. I think Rob is going out to play pool tonight, so I'm not cooking again.

Days like this don't give me much to write about, so I'm going to do a Friday Five, even though its Thursday. I'm keeping faith that something interesting will happen tomorrow.

1) What is your favorite sports movie? Bull Durham. Its the only movie I own on DVD, and Rob and I can recite it. Flower goes on the front, big guy. If you can tell me what scene this is, and you're not Rob, you win.)

2) What is your favorite romantic comedy film? Its hard to pick just one. I wish I had some clever answer like some Audrey Hepburn thing or something, but really its probably one of those Meg Ryan/Tom Hanks/ pieces of poo. I just saw the trailer for Its Complicated and it looks really good. I'm a sucker for Meryl Streep.

3) What's your favorite animated Disney movie? Finding Nemo. It is the standard by which all other animated movies are measured.

4) What's your favorite non-Disney musical? Wha? I can tell you one thing: I thought Moulin Rouge was a steaming pile of shit.

5) What's your favorite stranger in a strange land/fish out of water movie? I will admit here to liking Legally Blonde, but I'm not going to commit to that as my favorite... I've just spent five whole minutes on a website that lists fish out of water movies, and there's a lot of crap on there. Like Crocodile Dundee. This is stupid, I don't know what my favorite fish out of water movie is ok?

Sorry I'm so boring today. Bored Housewife is as Bored Housewife does, and Bored Housewife is going to take a little nappy...

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Ikea, Youkea, We all Kea for a Bunch of Crap

Today was a tough one. I went shopping, went out to lunch and took a nap. I've spent the last half hour doing dishes and folding laundry so my husband doesn't start wondering about me, but, frankly, there's no mystery, he knows I'm a lazy slob.

I went to Ikea. I have to stop going there. As part of the redo of the living room, we need a new rug. What we want is simple and easy to find, but I have a hard time spending $400 on something I know my family is going to trash. We have a dog who may well chew it. We do not remove our shoes when we come in the house. We routinely eat and drink things like chocolate ice cream and red wine in the living room. Stuff gets thrown on the floor, like backpacks and purses and shoes and dog toys and grocery bags and all kinds of things that contribute to the trashing of rugs. Also, there's my dog's obsession with woodchips. Any rug we get in here will last three years tops, and that's just not enough return on a $400 investment. Now, you may ask me, Couldn't you change your slovenly ways? And the answer is Are you kidding me? Why don't I just lose 50 lbs. while I'm at it? I know myself; this is who I am. I have enough personal challenges with food and exercise and dental work, and I simply cannot be bothered to tackle being a neater person right now. Or ever. Love me, love my mess. And I know you do.

So, I go to Ikea with the specific plan of finding a rug, a night table for Rob, some pretty holiday candles, and a set of sheets that I already own but love so much I want another set. You wanna know what happened? The same thing that always happens at Ikea; they were out of stock of the rug I wanted, they don't have any pretty holiday candles, and they don't carry my favorite sheets anymore. I did find a night table for Rob, and its still in the back of the car. What will happen now is that we will open the box and find that it is the wrong color/missing pieces/broken.

You'd think I would have saved a lot of money not finding what I was looking for, but I didn't and you know why? I did what everyone who goes to Ikea does, I loaded up on a bunch of shit I don't need. Four rolls of wrapping paper. Four picture frames that I don't actually have pictures for. Two glass votive candle holders. Construction paper for Leila. Some normal, boring candles. Batteries. $161 worth of bullshit. I went there so I could NOT spend too much money on a rug, and look what happens? That's it, I just can't go there anymore.

Then I went to lunch and came home and took a nap. But I watched the Oprah that was all about porn first. She says that one in three people who look at porn are women. Duh. Why is this so shocking? Raise your hand if you ever watch porn... See? Do you know how many people hit this blog while looking for porn? One of my recent search keywords was Bored Housewife Mild Porn. The other one that keeps popping up is Housewife Tori, probably because of my love of Tori Spelling.

Leila is squealing in the bathtub because she has shampoo in her eyes and I find this endlessly annoying. Does that make me a bad mom? What makes you a bad mom, besides your porn?

Thanks to L.SJ for this one...

Monday, November 16, 2009

Way to make me tie one one, kid

I'm reading a really good book right now, but I'll take a break to keep you all up to date.

I threw my foot in my mouth AGAIN today when I asked some moms "Is that kid just extra nutty?" thinking I was being funny and adorable, and then they told me the kid has autism. Wow. I'm such a D. bag.

But here's what happened on Friday, the day that the world stood absolutely still for forty minutes. I am going to try to avoid any identifying characteristics, so don't think I have issues if I refer to a child as "it." I was picking up L and a friend of hers at her classroom for a play date, but her friend, being a kid, and having a brain fart that kids sometimes have, took off for the kindergarten play area. While we were looking in bathrooms and on the big kid playground, and calling the mom, the kid was probably noticing that the kindergarten play area was emptying out, and that Leila and I were nowhere in sight, and decided the best thing to do was walk home.

Now, I used to walk home all the time, and it doesn't seem like it should be a big deal, but, believe me: IT IS. Kids just don't walk home around here. What would the blonde skinny moms do with their enormous cars if they didn't pick up their kids, right? So, anyway, we are frantically looking for this kid, his mom is on the phone completely and rightfully panicked, the police are called in, and they're on their walkee-talkees saying, "was last seen wearing..." and the office is printing out the kid's picture, and I'm like, "Holy effing shitballs."

On top of the panic and craziness, I was wearing high-heeled boots. If you know me at all, readers, you know my trouble with shoes, and that high-heeled boots only come out for special occasions when I know I wont be doing much standing or walking. They're like what Oprah calls her 15-minute shoes. So, I was running the perimeter of the school, ducking into bathrooms, stomping around woodchips on the playground, all in my high-heeled boots, and when I wasn't thinking Holy effing shitballs, I was thinking, Oh, God, my feet hurt!

Here's the other thing I was thinking, that makes me fell kinda bad, but its the truth: I was thinking, I didn't do anything wrong. I was at the door at the end of class, I didn't leave him in a mall parking lot after too many mai tais or something, so if something happened, its not my fault. Isn't that a little douchey? That's what I was thinking when I wasn't using my x-ray scanner kid radar looking for my charge. In my bones, I knew that nothing bad had happened and I knew that there would be a logical explanation for this disappearance, which there was.

The child walked home, probably thinking that was the right thing to do, and for forty minutes, the longest forty minutes of my life, we all went completely apeshit. We were right to go apeshit, though. If you can't see your kid, or the kid you're in charge of, for, like, more than 45 seconds, your heart leaps into your throat and things start happening in slow motion, until you find them in the cereal aisle of the grocery store, or where ever. Poor kid. I felt so bad for the kid when his mom brought it into the office. It looked stricken, scared, pale. I hugged that little blonde head to my bosom and tried to be smiley and happy. I was, too. It was a sight for sore eyes. Such a good kid, too, and I wont stop thinking that just because it took years off my life

I had an epic bucket of wine when I got home, right after Leila pulled off my boots for me. I want to thank the elementary school and the local police for being so on the ball and acting so quickly, I want to thank my town for having bike paths so that at least this child could walk home without the fear of heavy traffic, and I want to thank Clos du Bois for making a fine chardonnay and keeping it moderately priced so I can drink as much of it as I need to in times like these.

If you have a kid and want a great way to talk to them about stranger danger, check out this DVD. Its a good one. They also make one about internet safety, which I don't even want to think about right now...

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Yummy Yummy Foot

Do you see what I see?

Um, so, okay. The other night, a few hours after I wrote the last post, giving Oprah what for, I was watching a movie on TV, and I happened to glance down at the little shelf under the side table where we keep, um, magazines. I saw exactly what is pictured above. Inside the circle is the familiar font that is found on the cover of, um, O Magazine. I reached over and picked it up and, um, it was the November issue that I had just finished ranting about.

It gets worse.

I showed it to Rob, I felt like a moron, and when the movie was over, I thumbed through it. Not only did I receive the November issue, probably on time, but I'd already read it. I hadn't just given it a cursory glance, either. I had read everything that I was interested in reading, so I'm done with it and can pass it on to another reader.

Then you know what happened today? November 12th? I got the December issue, right when Oprah said I would.

So, its time to eat a little shit, and apologize to Oprah and her circulation department, who were a few days away from getting a bitchy call from me. Sorry, guys, I'm a loser.

But! In my defense! My furniture is all jumbled up because of the new sofa! I was overwhelmed by decorating projects and my impending trip and my birthday, and I was, y'know, confused!!!

No, I'm just a loser. I'm tired from all this apologizing, so I'm now going to put my feet up on my new sofa, and read the December issue of O magazine, and a month from now I will probably be in a huff because I will think I never got it.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Oprah, You're on my List (But not Really)

I have a bone to pick with Oprah. Oprah Winfrey. You heard right, I'm not afraid to pick bones with her majesty, I've got some balls.

Here's the thing. I used to have a subscription to O magazine. No, it did not come free with my subscription to the Utne Reader or Atlantic Monthly, or the New Yorker, I ordered it of my own free will, and I enjoy it. I even read Dr. Phil and Oprah's what I know for sure, and it helps me kill time while I'm not cooking dinner. Anyhoo, I started to get real irritated like, because, I believe that, as a subscriber, someone who keeps circulation numbers up and helps sell advertising so Oprah can buy more dogs and chenille throws, that I should receive the magazine at least one day before it hits the news stands, and never one day later. But that didn't happen with O. I would go to the grocery store, and longingly look at the issue in the magazine rack, wanting desperately to read what nuggets Suze Orman had for me, and I would have to wait, sometimes very impatiently, for my issue to come in the mail. I even called the 800 number for the circulation department a few times to complain, and all they could tell me was that it isn't considered late until the last day of the month of the issue, or some B.S. like that.

I let my subscription lapse for this reason. I thought, "to hell with this." and I started to buy it at the grocery store along with tampons and instant oatmeal. But the cover price is so much more than the subscription price, and I love getting anything in the mail that isn't junk or bills, and Oprah herself kept sending me letters and offers for 50% of the newstand price, and finally I succumbed to her wooing, and ordered a two- year subscription.

Yesterday, I watched the Oprah episode with Ellen Degeneres and Portia DeRossi talking about their love (I let Leila watch it too, I thought it was a good teachable moment) and Oprah and Ellen went on and on about how they shot the cover for the December issue ON NEWS STANDS NOVEMBER 12! They were on Michigan Avenue in Chicago giving away free autographed copies, and you know what? I DONT HAVE MY NOVEMBER ISSUE YET! Don't tease me with December when I haven't even seen the Thanksgiving recipes that I will never make in the November issue!

As I write this, I am worried that I did get the November issue, and on of my rare cleaning jags, I put it away in the designated magazine place in my bedroom and forgot about it. Hold on a sec' I'm gonna go check...

No! Ha! I was right! October is in there, and November is nowhere! My subscription just started a few months ago so I have, like, a year and a half of this bullshit left.

I'm calling you out, Oprah! (or Ms. Winfrey if you're nasty) I want my November issue in the mail TODAY and I want the December issue in the mail TOMORROW, one day before I see it in the grocery store, or else! Or else I will, um, not watch your favorite things episode? Nah, can't do that, I love that episode. I know! I will NOT read your book club selection! So there!!!

(Here's the other thing, though: if, like in my fantasy land where I'm thin and my feet are two sizes smaller, I am ever on the Oprah show, or if she showed up at my door with a camera crew to hand me my November issue in person, I would totally recant and blubber and be all, "Oh, Oprah, I didn't really mean it! Your magazine is always worth the wait! Ha ha ha!" So really, I don't have any balls at all.)

***ADDENDUM*** Just got my mail, and my magazine did not come today. Oh, its ON!

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Ambien in Seattle

Here I am, in Seattle! Its raining, and cold, and there was great thunder and lightning. Yay! Its sunny and 63 degrees at home; eff that noise!

I have a little bit of the blues over the old birthday. I don't care about the age thing, whatever, but I just can't seem to have a happy birthday. I even left the state this year to minimize my yearly birthday disappointment, and it followed me. I'm not sure if the external factors are exactly what I think they are and I'm not crazy for feeling blue, or if I'm just one of those people who is destined to be impossible to please. I just don't think the latter is true. And I can be really freakin' good at other people's birthdays; not every person, every year, without fail, but I can really pull out the stops when I am inspired, which I often am. Sometimes I don't even send a card, but sometimes I'm a damn birthday genius. And you know what? Its not that hard. Its not a stretch. It doesn't cause me stress or tax my faculties. It brings me joy.

I've considered canceling future birthdays and just taking myself to a movie and buying myself a present and getting my eyebrows waxed or something, but I'm afraid people would think I was eschewing my forties or being a drama queen, and neither of those things are accurate. So, I guess I'll just keep having stupid birthdays and smiling and saying thank you when I'd really rather forget the whole thing.

In other news, its crab night tonight. CRAB! My favorite ritualistic meal. You sit, you pick, you drink, you lick your fingers. Some people eat as they go, some make a pile (that would be me.) East coasters eat it warm, west coasters eat it cold. Some people eat it as is, some people dip it in butter, but I make a delicious mix of mayonnaise and curry powder that I dip my fork into and then spear some crab and create the perfect bite. It takes forever, you have plenty of time to get wasted, and the more you drink the sillier you get, and you laugh, and drool a little and go to bed full and happy. Crab is love. Crab is joy. Crab would probably be a disgusting insect if you turned the ocean and the land inside out, and people wouldn't eat it any more than they would eat - actually, I can't think of a gross insect that someone on the earth wont eat - but you know what I mean.

So, even though my birthday is Monday, I'm officially changing it to tonight. Crab and best friends make everything better. And ambien. Ambien is pretty good.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Swine Flu-haha

I have a bone to pick. Swine flu hysteria is sweeping the nation, and its pissing me off. I know no one wants to get sick, I get it. I get it probably better than anyone. And I know its hitting kids more than adults because they don't have antibodies to fight it. Swine flu is not new, its been around a while, so older people have already had it and wont get it again. And I understand that the flu has broken out prior to the vaccine being available, and everyone is freaking out. But here's the thing: Its a flu. Flu is always dangerous to a certain segment of the population, and sometimes some people get sicker than other people, and no one knows why. No one can explain why most people who are getting the flu have mild flu-like symptoms, but some are getting super duper sick and ending up in the hospital. I almost died from what started as a simple strep infection, for chrissakes, and to this day no one can explain to me why, just as no one can explain to me why I was felled by another strep infection from a variety of strep that all of us have all the time, but is normally asymptomatic. Its a mystery!

If you're sick from the flu and it sucks and you're miserable, I feel for you, I really do. Being sick in bed, especially when you have kids around and your husband goes to work regardless of your needs, is awful. But barring any unforeseen and random haywire super flu bug that lands you in the hospital, you'll be okay. Your kids will be okay. Its a flu. It sucks. You'll get over it. My family once had something that will always be known as Sick February, a three-week period a few years ago where all three of us had something terrible. We were all puking and dehydrated, and had fevers and aches and pains, and it SUCKED. I was so sick, that when Leila went into the back bathroom (where we keep the cat box) to throw up, I went in there to rub her back and noticed she was kneeling on cat litter with bare knees. Mother of the year! It was the first time Leila ever had diarrhea, and I had to try not to laugh at her on the toilet: she just kept yelling, "Its so STINKY!!!" I asked her if given a choice between diarrhea and puking what she would prefer, and she reluctantly chose diarrhea. Wouldn't you?

Am I being overly harsh? Maybe. Maybe I'll get angry comments, but I just can't seem to get worked up about this. I have only gotten two flu shots in my life, and only because they were available at my workplace and I wanted other people to get them so I had to, too. If I have access to a swine flu vaccine, I'll probably get one because I have asthma and a history of mutant angry bugs that want to kill me. We may have actually had swine flu last week; Leila had all the symptoms, but it honestly didn't occur to me that it might be the dreaded H1N1.

So, get your vaccines, stock up on Tamiflu, do whatever you need to do to feel secure. I'm just gonna chill. Boy, wont I be eating my hat if I come down with the flu...

In other news, I'm getting on a germ infested plane tomorrow for my extended birthday weekend with my BFFS in Seattle Washington. If you're a reader from that area and are dying to meet me, let me know, I'll try to squeeze you in to my party-my-ass-off-eat-and-drink-too-much weekend. You know what they have up there in Seattle? Rain!!! La la LA! I'll try to post from there, but it might mean putting down my wine.

Oh, and also, I had two requests for pictures of the sofa, so here you go. The rest of the room is not finished yet, so don't judge me.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Too. Many. Decisions!

Sorry, readers, I've been busy.

We got our sofa! It is beautiful! It makes everything else in my house look like garbage! So I have been on a mission, trying to find a rug and a coffee table that suit my particular needs, (smallish, round, glass - the table not the rug) and here is what I have learned:

1) I could never EVER be an interior decorator.

2) Rugs are WAY more expensive than they should be.

Also, I have become completely overwhelmed by the decorateur balls I am juggling. Last night, two strong men and Rob were wiggling the big part of the new sofa through the front door. It never occurred to me that the thing wouldn't fit, but, there they were, taking the door off the hinges and discussing the respective merits of either ripping out the door frame, or sawing the legs of my new sofa and then reattaching them. I couldn't watch. I stayed in the kitchen and thought about dinner. Why I didn't swill wine, I have no idea. Oh! I know! All my wine is in the wine rack in the coat closet, the door to which was blocked by the old sofa. Can you believe that I went through this without wine? My friend was here with her three kids and just stayed calm and kept the children happy, and thank goodness. I was at my wit's end, and I wasn't even doing anything.

Miraculously, the too-big sofa made it through the too-small door, both unscathed, I went to In 'n Out burger to get everyone dinner, and later, I got to my wine.

Here's the thing: I stupidly took on redecorating the living room at the same time as I took on Leila's shit hole of a room, so let's go back to that for a second.

I have now completed the purging part of the project. I have taken ten bags - yes, you read correctly, TEN BAGS - of stuff out of her room. Plus, I made her try on all her clothes, and took another two bags of clothes out of there. All the little pieces of things that I found behind the dresser and the bed etc. have been reunited with their kin, and the rest has been tossed. And you know what? LEILA HASN'T NOTICED A THING! Ten bags! No noticing! Then, I told her that Daddy and I thought it would be a good idea to create a room that reflected a bigger kid, and she was all excited. We ordered some new sheets, and we rearranged the furniture. She loves it, keeps calling it her "new room" but I'm less sure. I am stuck on whether to put the desk away for a while, or get new book shelves and a keyboard stand, and I just can't get my arms around it. I know, I'm a big whiny gasbag with an embarrassment of riches, blah blah blah, but this is hard! The living room! The kid's room! Its too much for me, especially since it requires parting with pieces of furniture which is very difficult for a person whose parents are sleeping on the same mattress and driving the same car that they bought 46 years ago (That is not a jokey joke, its completely true.)

I really want to finish the little movie I'm making about her room, but I can't until these decisions are made. Stay tuned, though, it'll happen. I also told her that Daddy and I (really mostly I) organized her room in such a way as to make it easier to clean up. I didn't tell her that that meant getting rid of half the stuff in there, but last night was the true test, and it was crazy easier to clean. Mission accomplished! Meaning exactly what it meant when W used it; We're not nearly done in there.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Happy Halloween!

As I am writing this, right this minute, it is Halloween Night! Bwahahahaha! AAAAAAACK!

My neighbor across the street did a major haunted house deal with smoke machines and skulls and scary music, the works. So I went out and bought extra candy to accommodate the extra trick or treaters, and you know what? They are skipping my house to go across the street and check out the haunted house! Can you believe that? They'll be back, OH YES, they'll be back...

I have been feeling nostalgic for the Hallows-ween of my youth, one hundred thousand years ago, when 99% of the costumes were homemade, and 99% of us went as ghosts, witches, hobos, gypsies, and cats. We would watch Its the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown! once, we would dress up once, for halloween itself, my mom would put a little make up on me, give me a black mole, and my dad would take us out trick-or-treating, and ask after every house, "did you say thank you?" Most of the houses did not decorate, and if they did it was a cardboard cutout of a scarecrow. Or maybe that was just my house. There was one house that had a couple of tiki torches going up the stairs and I would not go to their door for any amount of candy, or even a full sized snickers.

We did not collect for Unicef. Halloween was for kids, and was not a teachable moment for anything but avoiding apples with razor blades. Neighbors who you knew actually made home made treats like popcorn balls, and, I don't know about you, but I trick-or-treated with one other friend and that was it. No one went out to eat, no one with little kids went to a party and left their house dark, and I got to eat as much of my candy as I wanted or ration it out to myself, it was my choice. And if I ever became constipated, my mom would rub my back while I sat on the can and tell me it was from eating too much candy, whether it was Halloween or not, and I thought that was true until my twenties.

But, alas, things have changed. A lot of the costumes are store bought (although I have to admit I am seeing some fine examples of mother-sewing at my door tonight) and the kids come to the door in clumps of five or more, and half of them don't say trick or treat. I have to make them say it in exchange for the goods. Two separate kids have actually asked me, "How many pieces?" instead of trick-or-treat and thank you; my response was, "How about no pieces, would that work for you?" I don't ask for much, just that they do their part by saying the magic Halloween words, and I'll load 'em up.

My friend is giving out granola bars. Jeez. Honestly. I beseeched her to please, please just give out the good stuff for once in her life. Don't be the raisin lady, or the granola bar lady, or the toothbrush or spare change lady. Buy a bag of mini snickers, have a sip or two of wine and get it over with. I called her tonight, and she's not even home which means that innocent little children, with store bought costumes and Unicef boxes have to climb the stairs to her front door only to find a bowl of granola bars, for chrisakes.

Yes, its true, I rock.