Thursday, December 30, 2010

Halle - freakin' - lujuah!

If I knew how to make this blog play the Hallelujah chorus right now, I would make it do that:


So far, that is. 

My prediction about Sears not sending two people came true, and the guy they sent told me it wasn't the dryer but the dryer vent.  I could feel my blood starting to boil.  And how.  Its been a month.  I think I've been enormously patient.  Tears sprang into my eyes.  I told the repair guy calmly that the following tirade was not at all personal, then I started ranting and sniffling and freaking out.  Turns out this may have fixed the dryer because he was ready to leave, but then to appease the crazy lady he climbed around back there and did God knows what, and now the dryer is working.  It is heating up, it is spinning, it isn't soaking the back of my house in steam, and I can finally wash those sheets. 

I'll be keeping a very close eye on it, and I will be calling the vent cleaning place and giving them a piece of my mind.  What an effing ordeal!  I will also be nominating Miguel, from Sears Home Service, for the national medal of honor.  Or the Nobel peace prize.  Or an Oscar.  Or People's sexiest man alive.  Or all of the above. 

There are many things about this whole process that have bothered me, but what is bothering me most today is that the girlie-girl had to cry and pitch a hissy fit to get her dryer fixed after a month and 5 service people.  I am a strong woman.  I am not a big cryer, never have been.  But I am wondering weather the dryer would have been fixed properly the first time if I had just squeezed out a few tears to begin with.  I wonder if it would have been fixed properly the first time if Rob had been home to spew some extra testosterone instead of the silly little housewife who has no choice but to believe every macho repair man that comes to this house and passes the buck. 

I am also of the belief that the appliance repair overlords want you to freak out and have a fit, so you will forget about fixing that ten year-old dryer and just buy the new shiny one.  And also, that some repair people are just plain lazy, and they don't want to have to move the machine and get behind it and finish the job they started, they just want to leave you in the lurch and let the next guy deal with it. 

I thank you for hanging in there with me for the last month, I wont bore you with dryer stories any more.  Until it breaks again.  Like, tomorrow.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Fingers Crossed?

Are your fingers all cramped up from crossing them in hopes that my dryer gets fixed tomorrow?  Well, too bad!  Keep them crossed!  I don't know what I'll do if the dyer-fixers can't fix it tomorrow.  Actually, I know exactly what I'll do, I'll got to the laundromat with my wet clothes AGAIN.  I'm running out of quarters, people!  Its been almost a month that I have been dryer-free, and I am done with this little experiment.  So done.  I've called Sears and confirmed that they are coming tomorrow,  and that they are sending two guys, and that at least one of them will be a senior repair man, preferably the same one who came last time so I can be done with getting a different dryer fairy tale from every one of them.  That metal ring I told you about?  How it was rusting?  Turns out, there is no metal ring, no rust.  The last guy took the dryer apart and actually showed me what was staining my clothes, and when I asked about the metal ring, he's all, "yeah, not metal.  I don't know why he told you that."  I just want the straight poop.  Tell me the truth, I can take it.  Fix my dryer, I can take that, too.

So now I'm mentally preparing myself for the following probabilities: The repair guys will start by going to the wrong address in spite of my clear instructions.  They will get here five minutes - make it ten - after the nine - noon window I have been given.  They wont be a they, they'll be a he because Sears will fail to send the two technicians that it will take to lift my dryer off of the washer and out of the laundry closet.  He will not be a senior technician, so I will have to make him leave without touching the dryer and telling me more stories about why its not working and what the other guys did wrong.  Then I will call Sears to complain and book another appointment, and they will tell me that it will be at least a week.

Eventually, they will get the dryer out only to discover that they can't fix it, and I will have to get a new dryer.


If you are sick of hearing about my stupid dryer, just imagine how I feel. 

Leila has been at her friend's house across the street for hours.  All day, actually.  Its been HEAVENLY. I mean, I love her and all, but seriously?  All day, every day for two weeks?  Right.  They were supposed to come over here this afternoon, but they haven't yet, and I'm afraid to call over there and ruin the peace and quiet.  Its so... quiet!  No Mario Bros, no "hey mommy!  mommy!  hey mommy!" no "wanna color/ play charades / melt some crayons?"  I think I'll watch a little bit of Oprah.  If I sit still enough, maybe they wont know I'm here and they wont bother me?

Tuesday, December 28, 2010


Okay.  I made it.  Its over. 

I tell you: I love Christmas, but it is exhausting as hell.  I made a note for next Christmas to ask for a spa day that I can use December 26. 2011.  My back is pinchy, my feet hurt, my appetite is all out of whack, and the house is still a mess in spite of the fact that I seem to be cleaning it all the time.  The bills are coming due, the money has been flowing out like water, and not just on gifts, but the grocery bill and the eating-out amounts are higher than normal.  It all adds up, and its not really over yet.  Leila's birthday is in less than a week and I have to plan her party, get her presents, etc.  Then I may think its over, but that's when the Variety Show starts in earnest, and we still haven't worked out all the logistics.  If I can just get through the Variety Show, I will be home free.  We're going to Hawaii in February, and that is where I will take a long break in the sun, and I will get that spa day if it kills me. 

We had a lovely holiday, though, complete with my family's odd food presents (fried potatoes in a box, pickles, gummy bears) and it was smiles, smiles all around.  Not much to tell you about, really.  No travel drama, no weather drama, no family drama, no weird gifts that can't be returned, no food poisoning, no inappropriate holiday cards, no drunk relatives (not that drunk, anyway) no injuries, no nudity, nothing interesting to report except that we are all happy and blessed and full.  Boring.

Maybe as an extra Christmas gift, Santa will bring me a wonderfully competent dryer repair person who miraculously has all the parts he needs and I will be able to use my dryer to my heart's content.  I need to wash my sheets real bad.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

The Saga Continues

12.08 p.m. The dyer guy is here:

I start out by telling him the whole story about the first guy who cleaned the vents, and my new guy says, "Daniel Vega?" and I say "Yes!" and the new guy says "What a scumbag."

The dryer is pulled apart, and a scorched piece of felt that looks like a rotten banana peel came out of it, so the burning smell and the smoke detector going off is taken care of.  Apparently, steam does not set off smoke detector's, as I previously thought...

12:46  The dryer guy is gone:

Can't fix the dryer, needs a second technician to pull the thing down and examine the whole back side.  Still not venting in spite of two vent cleanings.  I am surprisingly not a dissatisfied customer.  I like   honesty, and I don't mind the laundromat so much.  Its next to a donut shop, how bad can it be?

Next Thursday, put it on your calendar.  That's the day my dryer will be fixed.  Maybe...

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

it Should be a Crime

Last night I stayed up until almost 2 in the morning finishing the last of the Stieg Larsson books (you know, the dragon tatoo books.)  I went to brush my teeth before I went to bed (okay that's a lie.  I blew off brushing my teeth, but I did pee) and saw my swollen scrunched up eyes in the mirror and though, What's my dad doing here?

Here's the funny thing:  I usually read chick lit, the good kind, like the kind Oprah used to pick for her book club before she conned the country in to reading the classics.  Stories about marginalized women, who have some life changing experience or climactic event, but then go on to be marginalized in some other way for the rest of their sorry lives.  Some of them, most of them, were seriously depressing.  I started reading this Stieg Larsson series a few months ago, and now I've read all three, and I also read another crime novel by a woman named Karin Slaughter (that can't possibly be her real name) and I am about to say something I never thought I'd say:  I like crime novels.  There.  I said it.  It is a genre I never thought I'd buy into, but once I sink my teeth into a good crime novel I can't put it down, as evidenced by my puffy, tired face this morning.  Luckily, my book club will keep my reputation in tact by making me read higher brow things, like chick lit.

On that note, I would like to say that the best book I read all year was not a crime novel, but Cutting for Stone by Abraham Verghese.  I also very much enjoyed Let the Great World Spin by Colum McCann (a little depressing and odd, but ultimately satisfying and strangely beautiful) and I will throw in The Little Giant of Aberdeen County by Tiffany Baker, not only because its was a thoroughly entertaining book, but also because the author is a client of mine and she's really super cool.

Yes, its true: I read books.  I also read Oprah magazine, Newsweek (sort of, depending on the week) and I read recipes and TMZ and blogs.  I am a many-layered person, and reading stuff allows me to procrastinate all the other stuff I have to do. 

This is making me want to do some 2010 best and worst of lists like everyone else in the world is doing.  I will take some time to think on this and get back to you.  But right now I have to melt chocolate so I can coat my peanut butter pretzel balls in it and roll them in crushed peanuts.  This is what the holidays do to me.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Where have I been, you ask?  I've been Christmassing my little butt off, that's where.  I think I'm actually done now, though.  I have a nagging suspicion that there is something that I am forgetting, but whatever it is can't be that important, right?  I have wrapped and hidden everything, school is done with for now, I have no travel plans, Leila and I will make cookies on Thursday (because the one thing I need more than anything else is more sugar) and I think that's it!  This morning we got out of bed and went straight to Trader Joes and bought everything that looked delicious.  I should be sated for about three days.

So let me tell you about my dryer.  You know, that useless empty box above my washing machine.  I had the vents cleaned, again, by a reputable company with a vacuum-in-a-van, and not a lot came out, but what did come out was compacted and wet, so clearly it needed to come out.  I was so happy that it was finally done, that I did a load of laundry right away and put it in the dryer.  Yay!  Except, no.  In seven minutes the entire back of my house was steamed up and the smoke detector was going off.  This is not normal, and it will also rust the little metal ring that is ruining all my clothes.  I called Sears.  They're sending a senior technician this time (thanks for the rookies, Sears) and he'll be here... in a week.  So right before Leila's class party, I went to the laundry mat and dried two loads of clothes.  Now my neighbors are out of town and have given me permission to dry stuff at their house, so we all have clean undies and towels and stuff.  Its been so long since I could do a simple load of laundry from start to finish in my own home, I'm kind of getting used to this.  I've taken putting off doing laundry to new heights.  You know those underpants in the back of the drawer that you keep for an emergency?  Now is their time to shine!

I'm kind of in denial of the fact that my washer is making a funny noise.  And not ha ha funny...  Maybe 2011 will be the year we get all new appliances?  Santa?  Are you listening?

Its weird how I love Christmas, but the month before the actual holiday I am irritable and moody and impatient.  Leila wrote this thing in school about how she wants me to get a diary because "sometimes she's annoyed so I want her to write down her feelings."  I'm trying to be a little less "annoyed."  So on Sunday we had a pajama day and I let her watch TV for seven hours.  Who's the mother of the year?  Right here, baby! 

She's out with my dad right now, and I'm going to lay on my sofa and read my book and eat peppermint salt water taffy, because its Christmas, and I'm tired and irritable, and that's what I want to do.  So there.

(merry christmas!)

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Update on the Madness

Banjo (my roomba vacuuming robot) was having issues this morning.  He got stuck under the armoire a few times, and then he skimmed along the edge of the fireplace and spread ashes all over the place and didn't pick them up.  I left to do some errands, and when I came back, he was stuck under the armoire again, but this time he had a bunch of cables tangled in his brushes.  So I cleaned him all out and turned him on again because the floor still wasn't clean, and I guided him with my feet to the dirty parts that he kept missing by mere inches.  So I'm dancing around the floor trying to turn my roomba around, coaxing him out loud like he's a dog, and I'm thinking, This is just a wonderful use of my time, especially when you consider I could sweep up the little pile of dust with a broom and be done with it, which, it turns out, I have to do anyway because Banjo's battery ran out.  But I do love him so, and I hate sweeping dust bunnies into a dust pan just enough.

I think I'm half done with Christmas shopping.  It could be more than half, but I don't want to jinx things by being too optimistic.  The tree is up, and the lights are on the house!  Remember last year I introduced you to my favorite ornaments and told you about The Bird?  Well this year, I got three more birds for the tree, just to stick it to Rob.  I just don't take his dislike of birds in Christmas trees seriously, and it turns out that I was right not to.  Apparently, he doesn't mind bird ornaments in trees, He just hates my one, big, bird that I put right in the middle.  But in the middle it will stay.  I love that damn bird. 

The Variety Show is an even bigger pain in the ass than I ever imagined it could be.  And then, Leila (the whole reason I decided to take on this shindig) says to me, "Well, we didn't have to a Variety Show at all."  That was information I could have used a few weeks ago.   So far, 120 kids  have signed up.  That is not a typo.  I don't even like kids that much.  I like my kid, but your kid smells bad and makes weird noises.  And you know what else?  I realized that the kids that actually have a "talent" like playing an instrument or doing tai kwon do, usually have an opportunity to show their talent on a stage when they have recitals and stuff.  So basically, the Variety Show is pretty much for kids who want to dance around to their favorite song.  I do that in my kitchen every day, but I wouldn't call it a talent.  Then there are the parents who are mad at me because I will not accept late applications (apparently, I am a horrible person for not supporting working parents, parents who had kids with colds, parents who can't be on time with forms, etc.) and the other parents who try to sneak late applications in thinking I'm an idiot and wont notice.  THERE ARE 120 CHILDREN IN THIS SHOW, PEOPLE!  LEAVE ME ALONE!

Its the most, wonderful time, of the year!

I'm a little charged up today, I guess.  I have to do things differently next year.  1) tell Variety Show to go fuck itself.  2) Don't make candies that no one will eat but me, and I will eat them, don't you worry. 3) Do my Christmas shopping in October so I have one less thing in December.  4) drink more wine.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

OMG, I'm so not LOLing

Shit, y'all.  Seriously. 

It is definitely December.  Its about as December as it can get.  I am so tired, and so busy, and so annoyed.  Just the regular December stuff: the boxes, the lights, the decor, the baking, the rain, the cards, the shopping, the wrapping, the santa, and the freakin' good will toward men, except for Rob since his performance as Christmas elf is less than satisfactory. 

And you wanna know what else?  The Variety Show.  Remember the Variety Show from last year?  I think I said that the people who run it are masochists, and may have added that you couldn't pay me any amount of money to take on a show like that.  Well, guess what...

I'm still in denial about it.  I don't want to face the fact that I caved, and am now in charge of the chaotic, never-ending, Myley Cyrus laden, elementary school free for all.  But that's what happened.  It pains me to type the words.  I'm trying to stay positive.  Its for the kids!  The kids are adorable!  I haven't gotten any kids wanting to do Myley Cyrus yet! (but I have two Taylor Swifts) People love the show! The kids!  THE KIDS!!!

Heaven help me.  What was I thinking?  I need a nap, and about four more of those peppermint salt water tafees from Trader Joes.  I think I'll be okay if I can get those things...

Friday, December 3, 2010


I just spent an hour or so in a laundromat, and it was kind of lovely.  Its quiet in there, and warm, and while I waited for my sheets to dry, I was forced to sit quietly and play solitaire on my iPhone.  Leila was with me and was reading a book.  I'm wondering if, when my dryer is fixed, I might just go there anyway to get some peace and quiet. 

Here's the thing, though: I did three loads of laundry at home, all the loads but the white load.  The one with the underpants in it.  I know that before I had a washer and dryer of my own, I washed my delicate lady things at the laundromat and couldn't have cared less who watched me fold them (and I do fold them.  Only now they are much less delicate.)  My neighbor also kindly invited me to dry my stuff in her dryer, but it seems I've gotten a little shy about my undergarments.  I don't really want to schlep them into the laundromat, but I think it might be worse to bring them to the home of someone who knows me.

I'm going to have to bite the bullet one way or another, so probably the laundromat. 

I so could not have been a pioneer woman.  Although the other day I did make bread from scratch.  I don't really know what I was thinking.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

That Dryer Guy was Made of Lies!

Remember when I was all pumped up about that guy who came to service my dryer and cleaned my vents for me and all that stuff?  Turns out, he wrecked my dryer!

I did a white load last Wednesday, and a third of the load was stained with at least one dark brown line, and not just Rob's underoos.  It has ruined four or five of Rob's work shirts, and now has gotten on to some of Leila's white turtle necks, and let me assure you, IT NEVER COMES OUT!  So Wednesday I had had it, and I called Sears and scheduled a service call.  When the guy came out in September, it was a "routine maintenance" call, not a "service call" (apparently there is a big difference) and since he wasn't supposed to clean the vents or "fix" the dryer, they don't care that my dryer is now ruining my clothes.  For $195, a service guy would come out, and up to $500 worth of parts would be included, and if they couldn't fix it, I would get a $500 voucher for a new machine.  This sounded too good to be true to me, but Rob said we should go for it. 

Oh! Also! The September dryer guy gave me his direct cell phone number and said he could save me some money by going around Sears.  I called that number and HE DOESN'T WORK THERE ANY MORE.  Shocking.

Anyway, the new guy came out and told me that the reason I'm getting these stains on my clothes is that there is a metal ring somewhere in the dryer and when there is too much moisture the metal ring rusts and the rust stains the clothes.  The moisture comes from the vents being clogged.  Since my vents were "cleaned," I have had to open the windows and take down the smoke detector in the back of the house because the whole place gets steamed up.  This was not happening before Mr. Dryer Ruining Guy worked his magic.  The new guy tells me that there's no way the old guy could have cleaned my vents properly without a crazy vacuum in a van, and that he probably just shoved the lint around and compacted it somewhere in the dryer vent and that is what is causing all my problems. 

AND THEN!  He tells us that this problem isn't covered by the $195 deal with Sears because the vent isn't officially part of the dryer. Of course it isn't!  Awesome!

This morning I have to find someone to come out and clean the vent properly, and I can't use my dryer until I do.  The guy scraped all rust off and cleaned the metal ring thing, but if I use the dryer again, the moisture will accumulate and the problem will start all over again.  By the time I'm done paying for all of this, I may as well have bought a new dryer without a metal ring. 

This is all by way of saying: My benevolent appliance Gods have abandoned me, those bastards.

So what's the lesson?  Is it a bad idea to "maintain" appliances and cars that are in reasonably good working order lest some A-hole eff them up?  My car is idling weirdly since I had that major service, too...

**Addendum: Can't get an appointment with the well yelped vent cleaners for TWO WEEKS!  I don't think I can make it that long, even if I turn my underpants inside out.  Its been a while since I've been to a laundromat, but luckily my book club book requires time an attention, so that's where I'll be if you need me!

Monday, November 29, 2010

Amazing (and sad) Discoveries!

Today is Thanksgiving (hello people of the future!) and I made an amazing discovery!  Actually two, but one is really not that amazing.

Since we don't have to cook a Thanksgiving dinner, Rob and I decided that we would clean the bathroom together.  Not-so-amazing discovery: I realized about half way through that this is becoming a holiday tradition: I cleaned the bathroom last Christmas Eve, he cleans the kitchen floor on Mother's Day... This must stop.

You know how I feel about cleaning the bathroom, especially the shower tiles, I talk about it all the time.  But I actually can't physically do the tub or the floor because that involves kneeling on the floor and bending over and girlfriend, those days are over.  I am 40, after all.  Rob, however, can do these things, so I cleaned the tiles, the sink, the toilet, walls, surfaces, etc, and he cleaned out under the sink (expired prescriptions much?) and then cleaned the tub and right now he's cleaning the floor.

Here is the more amazing of the two discoveries:  I used some Bon Ami that I've had under the kitchen sink for probably a decade.  Its a powder cleanser like Ajax or Barkeepers Friend, and I never use it because someone told me long ago its bad for your tub.  Well.  For the first time in one million years, I used it on the toilet and on the sink and that stuff is the bomb!  Rob had some consternation about using on the tub, but I told him that its probably only dangerous to the finish if you use it twice a month, but twice a year its probably okay.

Another bonus discovery is that I had never realized that the shower is one place where Rob can't wear his glasses! So all this time, he can't even see how dirty it is in there!  I never put that together!  I ask you, how lucky can a girl get?

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

I'm so hungry, I could eat Ikea

Given that this is a week that revolves around cooking and eating and belt loosening, I thought I would tell you about my adventures in eating today.

Before Rob left for work, he pointed out that I had lots of things to eat for lunch today.  Left over Chinese food that I'd insisted on Saturday night, a left over half sandwich that I got Saturday afternoon, plus other delicious left overs.  It was enough to feed, well, a bunch of people.  I started the day by doing my grocery shopping and there was crab on sale.  Crab is, like, my favorite, so I was giddy with the thought of eating my first crab of the crab eating season, and I almost bought an extra one so I would have some crab around for snacking.  I restrained myself, and got two crabs for dinner.  Rob isn't really in to crab, but I didn't care, he'll eat it and he'll like it.

Then I had my semi-annual trip to Ikea with my Ikea buddy.  Sometimes we only go once a year, but we always go before the holidays.  I stock up on candles, and paper, and all kinds of other crap (that's crap, not crab) and I am stunned when I get to the check out at how all these things that are only $3.99 add up to $161?  I just don't get it.  Must be Swedish math.  Anyway, after Ikea we traditionally go to lunch.  Of course, I knew that I was supposed to go home and eat left overs, but its tradition.  So we went to our traditional place and it was closed.  We went to our traditional back-up place, but before I ordered my delectable burrito bowl, I started to worry about Rob knowing that I didn't eat the left overs.  So I put my lunch on a credit card that he doesn't ever check.  I couldn't finish my burrito bowl, so... more left overs.  When I got home I went to the trouble of hiding the left overs in the back of the fridge, behind some older left overs and the dog food. 

This is the conversation we just had:

Him: "Hey, you didn't eat any of your left overs for lunch."
Me: "I know."
Him: "By any chance,  did you have lunch at Ikea?"
Me, sounding offended: "No!"
Him, grinning: "How about Chipolte?  Did you by any chance eat there?"
Me: "I don't know what you're talking about."
Him: (Laughs)
Me: It was our traditional pre Christmas Ikea trip!  We had to go to lunch!"
Him: "I love how you feel you need to justify everything like, 'But it was Tuesday!'"
Me: If you like that, you'll love how I put it on the Amex that you never see, and how I hid the left overs way back in the fridge.
Him: (Laughs, in a ridiculing, head shaking way.)


Now, this is why my marriage is awesome.  I think that I am pulling something over on him, and not only does he know me way too well, but I give it all up at the slightest provocation.  I'd better never have an affair; I'll be blabbing to him about it in no time.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Tick, Tick, Tick...

This day is just passing me by.  Much like yesterday.  I have a ton of things to do, but my mind is a jumble and I can't decide where to start, and the internet is just so interesting!  Prince William is engaged?  The Beatles are now available on iTunes? a Kardashian posed nude for something?  I ask you:  how am I supposed to move forward through my day in the face of such information??  No, if I don't get started first thing in the morning, the day is just over.  If I come home from school and don't get on the phone, don't sit down at the time-sucking machine, and don't take a nap, I can get a lot done and keep up some momentum until at least 2 in the afternoon.  But if I veer from the program, its just over.  The other day I sat sideways on my desk chair and rested my head on the back of it and just stared off into space for an absurd amount of time.

I need to make a list.  Lists are helpful.  They can also be soul crushing reminders of all the stuff you still have to do, but if I put Breathe in and out, and Get dressed on the list, I know I will accomplish something today.

I'm also having an EAT day.  All I want to do is eat.  I just ate, like, seven crab appetizers that I popped in the oven, and I'm hungry again.  It is lunch time, though.  I had wonderful sushi the other night, and its all I can think about. 

In other news, Rob and I had our parent/teacher conference this morning with Leila's teacher and I am showing enormous self restraint right now because I really want to brag, brag, brag.  It was a good meeting.  I wasn't expecting any surprises, but it is so nice to hear that your kid is doing fine in school, is well liked, and that there is no cause for worry.  Was that bragging?  Braggety brag brag brag.  That's all I'm gonna say.

Okay.  I am now going to make a list.  But first, I will quickly check facebook to see if anything earth shattering has happened in the last five minutes.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Confession Time

Remember that time a few months ago when I canceled cable?  Well, its back.  On Friday, a nice guy from AT&T U-verse came over and installed all the stuff, so now we have cable again.  As the resident sloth and TV/sugar addict in this home I feel the need to tell you that ITS NOT MY FAULT.  I am actually a little bummed about having it back.  Except for the whole award show thing, I haven't missed it at all.  But then there was the world series, and a little team called the Giants were in it, and my poor husband had to invite himself over to people's houses just to catch a game.  He even paid for the online streaming service, but it kind of sucked. 

And of course he starts snooping around online for cable deals right after he throws me an amazing surprise party, and looks up at me (or down at me, he's taller) with his sad eyes and says, "I'm done with this experiment." He may as well have asked for a pony, too.  What was I supposed to say after everything he did for my birthday? 

My mom was kind of giving me the business about getting cable back, because she knows all about my unhealthy relationship with screens (that I have passed on to my daughter, apparently) and I had to remind her that I am not the only person living in my house, and sometimes you have to give in.  I didn't just give in, though.  I caved.  I caved hard.  But again, it was a SURPRISE PARTY!  I didn't stand a chance!  I even suggested that we wait until after the holidays, but it didn't work.

The good news is that I have actually sat down when I've had a spare half hour to watch some TV, and I've turned it off ten minutes in.  I have no interest in it.  I've gotten so used to life without it, I feel a little dirty sitting down to watch a cooking show. 

In other news, its the middle of November, 9:30 in the morning, and its almost 80 degrees outside.  No sir, I don't like it.  Its weird.  Like the Apocalypse.  Like earthquake weather.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

I Did It

I finally did it.  I turned 40.

Time to take some stock:
Vision: My eyes are going in divergent directions.  One is fine, the other is coming off the rails.
Hearing: What?
Bones and teeth: Strong.
Muscles: What?
Wrinkles: None, thanks to oily skin and ample body fat.  I am getting wrinkles on my chestle area, though, because my boobs get mashed together when I sleep.  Sexy.
Gray hairs: About 10 of them, easily plucked, and only on my head.
Weight:  Let's not go there, except to say that I am the anti-Bob Greene.
Memory: What?

I feel about 25 on the inside, and about 55 on the outside.  Rob says that maybe over the next 10 years those ages will meet somewhere in the middle.

40 is not the new 20, and don't let anyone tell you it is.  I wouldn't be 20 again if you paid me,  although I did it for free the first time.  I got a birthday card from a friend that I think perfectly sums it up: "Welcome to your 40s!  Its better in some ways!"

Rob threw me a killer surprise party for my birthday.  I seriously think it was the best birthday I've ever had.  The party was a Lady's Night with about 25 women and 4 guys.  It took me a while to notice that the guys were all wearing white shirts and black pants and they were acting as waiters and bartenders!  How adorable is that?  Rob held a quiz (complete with a prize) to see who knew me best.  My favorite part was when he asked the question "What is Bored Housewife's favorite activity between 3 and 4 in the afternoon?" and the whole crowd shouted, "Napping!"  and, of course, they were all correct.  The drinks were flowing,  the food was awesome, the hugs were heartfelt, and I didn't want it to end!  It almost didn't end, actually.  The hostess made more appetizers at midnight because we were all starving again.   I'm still smiling about it, and I'm going to ride the crest of this party for a long time.

And almost every woman in the place nudged me in the ribs about all the sexual acts I'm going to have to perform as a thank you.  So far, we've both been too tired...  Too much partying...

Thanks to my wonderful husband and all my wonderful friends for making my big birthday such an amazing one!  So far, my 40s don't suck!

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

The Oprah Recap, Part Two

Now, here's the stuff you really want to know:

We got the straight haired Oprah, rather than the curly haired Oprah, and I will tell you that she looks just like Oprah.  No taller or shorter, no bigger or smaller, she looks just like the Oprah you see every day on your TV. So she walks out and kind of waves and sits down in her interview seat, and then someone comes out and puts her shoes on for her, and then someone comes out and adjusts her sweater, and then her make up guy comes out and touches up her make up.  Then she made a joke about how when you're as rich as she is, no one will let you do anything for yourself.

Here's the interesting thing:  I realized that the show is not done for the studio audience.  We are a prop.  Which is not to say that it wasn't super cool and something that I will remember forever, but she and her guests are mic'd up for the camera, not the audience, and Oprah comes out, does her show like a smooth pro, hangs with the audience for a few minutes, and leaves the stage to go on with her day. 

So here it is:  Mercifully it was not Bob Greene for an hour.  Our show will air in January, and is a sort of New Year's resolution thing.  We had Dr. Oz for a segment on the five numbers you should know (blood pressure, cholesterol, waist measurement, weight, and I forget the other one) and he did a whole demo with a big blood vessel.  Then came Bob Greene talking about his five steps toward weight loss and his new book.  Honestly, I don't know what he said because I really did almost fall asleep, I was so tired.  When he left the stage we all thought, Don't we get a free copy of his book?

Then Peter Walsh, the organizing guru did a segment on de-cluttering your life, and shilled his new book, which we also didn't get a copy of, but Oprah said that everyone in the audience was getting a $100 gift card to the Container Store!  This was awesome, but also ironic since I worked at the Container Store for eighteen months and my whole house looks like a Container Store catalog.  Then came Adam Glassman, the O creative director who also does a style column in the magazine.  He came out with some models showing off new looks for fall.  Then Oprah talked about her new iPhone app, then she said, in her Oprah way, "Everyone here is going home with all this stuff!"  We all went nuts, partially because it was a bunch of free stuff, and partially because it was our job and we were all super excited to be there. 

So here is what I got:

Bootights: a combo of tights and socks to be worn under boots.  
A Chickie: an undergarment that you attach to your bra so your boobs
don't fall out when you're wearing low-cut stuff. 
Perfect for the stacked, like myself.

The Shirt, a button down shirt with cool double buttoning so, again, your boobs don't fall out

The Side Slope Parka from Eddie Bauer
that I took a picture of in the Eddie Bauer store on Michigan Ave:


These cool Sorel Boots!

I had always wondered how they give away clothing items on the Oprah show.  I wondered if the audience had to go to some big room and try a bunch of stuff on, or if they ran out of sizes or whatever, so if you've wondered the same thing (or even if you haven't) here is the answer:  As you leave the building, you are handed a gift bag.  In our case, the bag contained the scarf (love it) and a big envelope with gift cards and vouchers.  Some of the vouchers have to be mailed in advance, some things can't be ordered until January, some take weeks to ship, but who's complaining?  Not me!  We got an Eddie Bauer gift card that we don't have to use for the parka, and I could do some good Christmas shopping with it, but, dammit, I'm getting that Oprah parka!  The women who were there with their husbands get double the stuff because the men get everything the women get.  So now you know.

It looked like Oprah had it easy that day because she came out casually, sat down, read off a tiny teleprompter like it was no thing and let the guests do the rest.  The guests really have to be on their game.  They have no teleprompter or cue cards, they have to know what they're going to say and how long they have to say it.  Then the audience claps and they leave the stage and don't come back out. 

When the taping was done, and the models and the last guest were gone, Oprah hung with the audience for a few minutes, answering some questions.  There was one woman in the audience who wouldn't shut up and just wanted everyone to know that she was in some small way connected to Oprah by talking about some animal shelter, and then another woman raised her hand and asked if she could get a picture with Oprah.  Oprah said, "Since you were bold enough to ask, come on down here."  Then every hand shot up, but she only took the one picture.  Oh yeah, there's an official photographer there throughout the whole show taking pictures or her and her guests.  

Then she said a really nice thing that I'm sure she says to all audiences, and I wish I could remember exactly how she said it.  She was all, "I know how much shopping, and manicuring and traveling and hair perming and hair straightening went in to you all being here today, and you've made us successful for 25 years and we really appreciate all the effort you've made to be here with us." or something like that, and then she said bye and left the stage. 

It went so fast!  The whole taping was an hour tops.  Then the fluffer lady came back out and gave us all the info on the gift cards and vouchers and stuff, and then we were ushered out of the studio, handed our gift bags and we were out on the street.  We were freezing, because only the person who made the reservations can get all the checked coats and phones and stuff, but we didn't care, we'd just seen Oprah!  We put our new scarves on, and went across the street to the Oprah store!

I went a little nuts in the Oprah store, and came home with a lot of souvenirs for friends and for myself that I now regret.  I'm not sure how many people want an Oprah Christmas ornament on their tree, but you're welcome!  I got one box of Oprah note cards, and I wish I'd gotten a bunch of those.  There is a section of the store called Oprah's Closet...

 where she sells clothes that she's worn before.  I almost bought a sweater, but then decided to stick with all the Oprah logo crap that was piled in my basket.  
Then we went to lunch and looked through all our vouchers and added up the value of everything and the number was over $650!  That was more than my plane ticket!  Then the server brought us this huge thing of cotton candy.  It was awesome.

We had so much fun, and it was such a once-in-a-lifetime thing.  The free stuff was nice, but it would have been great without it, too.  So I suggest you go to her website and try to get tickets for yourself and some friends.  Its totally worth it!

Chicago was fun also.  The people are really nice, and they all want to send you to their favorite steak house!
So: after all that, any questions?

Monday, November 8, 2010

Oprah Recap, Part One

Okay, this will serve as my own personal journal entry on the Oprah experience, so its going to be a long one.  Get comfortable.

I flew to Chicago on Wednesday, checked in to the hotel, went to grab a bite with my friends, had one glass of wine, nibbled the edge of an ambien and tried to go to sleep.  No dice.  First lesson for anyone attending the Oprah show from the west coast: get to Chicago two days before the taping, spend your first day sight seeing and getting a mani pedi, get a good night's sleep and go to the show the second day.

We were instructed to be at the studio at 7 a.m. so we got up at quarter of 6 Chicago time (quarter to 4 California time!) and got all Oprahed up.  I put on my new Oprah boots, and we took a cab to the studio.  It was still dark out.

We got there and the line was already all the way down the building in a tented line area.  Second lesson for anyone attending the Oprah show: get there earlier than they tell you to.  You get a numbered release form as you go in, and you are sent into the studio according to your number, like boarding a plane.  The higher the number, the fewer seat choices you have.  But, the studio was smaller than I expected, and there isn't a bad seat in the place.  We were lucky because even though we were the second to last group to be called down, we were on the side of the studio that The Great One was facing, so we weren't looking at the back of her head the whole time.

But backing up for a second: Once you are in the building and have received your release form, you go through security.  They check your purse and put you through a metal detector.  They take your phone and camera, and they seem to take any pieces of paper in your purse.  They took all my business cards, and I saw them taking notebooks and things like that.  I assume its because people throw stuff on stage.  The person who made the reservation (in this case, my friend, G) is in charge of the claim tickets, and everything they confiscate from your party goes into one big ziploc bag. 

Then you go up a flight of stairs to a holding area where you fill out your release form, allowing them to own your image forever and ever amen, and then we were asked to fill out a fitness and diet survey from Bob Greene.

Bob Greene, I'm pretty sure, is Oprah's personal trainer, fitness guru guy.  He writes books and stuff.  Now, I don't want to appear ungrateful, but I thought to myself, If I have to sit through an hour of Bob Greene talk about weight loss and fitness, I don't know how I'll stay awake.  You all know how I feel about this stuff: there's not a lot about weight loss and fitness that I don't understand, and I really don't want to talk about it.  Also, I was so freakin' tired.

I wish I had been wearing a watch, but I wasn't so I don't really know how long we were in that holding area.  A half hour maybe?  Then the people in charge start sending us back down stairs to the studio in groups of 50, according to the number on our release form.  For the purposes of posterity, let me just say that I was number 251.  We went down to the studio, found four seats together, and waited.  One thing you don't realize is that, even though they've confiscated a lot of the stuff in your bag, you still have your bag.  So the next time you watch Oprah, just know that all those ladies have their purse under their seat.

Then the fluffer lady comes out, and she's the one who gets the crowd going.  She's the one who asks where everyone is from, and says happy birthday to people, and answers some questions and all that stuff.  Then she gets a signal from someone saying Oprah is on her way, so she leaves the stage, and then, without any fanfare or "Ladies and Gentlemen!", carrying her high heels in her hand, comes


To be continued...

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Major Annoucement!

Okay, everyone.  I have something seriously MAJOR to announce.  Oh boy this is good!

Thanks to the generosity and persistence of a good friend, I am leaving on a jet plane tomorrow morning, headed for Chicago to be in the audience of:



I am going to be in the same room as The Great and Powerful Oprah!  La la la!  So excited!

To answer your first question, I have no idea who is going to be on the show.  The shows are taped,  they do two shows in a day, and I will be at the morning taping on Thursday.  It could be Marie Osmond.  It could be George W. Bush and his parents.  It could be... Favorite Things!

If you know Oprah at all, you know that in the month of November she does her favorite things show where she tells us all what to buy each other for Christmas and gives the audience butt-loads of free stuff.  One year she gave away refrigerators and computers and cashmere robes and stuff.  I seriously don't think that I will be lucky enough to be on that show.  I am already pretty darn lucky in most areas of my life (except for that whole no dining room thing) but I've never been someone who wins things like raffles, or sweepstakes, or the California Lottery.  Its a longshot at best.   

I have my Oprah outfit picked out, I bought some new Oprah shoes, I'm going to take this black halloween nail polish off because I don't think Oprah would like it.   If I get to ask Oprah a question, I'm going to ask her where we should eat while we're in Chicago, and I'll go where ever she tells me to.

It would be cool enough to just absorb the Oprah-ness of the experience, but I also get to spend two days in Chicago, where I have never been, with a good friend, and its not going to snow!  Yay!

Feel free to envy me, I don't blame you.  I'd be envying me, too, if I were you. 

Monday, November 1, 2010

Halloween, DONE!

And Halloween is over.  Its interesting to me how Christmas seems to linger on; the kids are out of school, so they're home and playing with their new stuff. We leave the tree up and the lights on the house for a little while after, whereas with Halloween, November first I want it out.  All the preparations; the costume making, the house decorating, the school party,  and then the kids goes trick-or-treating for two hours and its over.  This morning I felt like the person who keeps their Christmas lights up until Easter with the pumpkin and the rubber turkey vulture out on the front porch, and Halloween only ended 12 hours ago!

I have so much left over candy, you guys, its crazy.  Anyway, its become a tradition, so here is the pictorial recap of Halloween chez Bored Housewife:

Black Widow!

How do you paint a spider face?
This is how!

Friday, October 29, 2010

Long Live the Queen!

Okay, people, I may have been a douche-bag mom yesterday, but today I more than made up for it.  I was the most kick-ass, totally non-douchey, uber-housewife IN THE UNIVERSE!

Here is everything I did today, in poem form:

Made lunch and breakfast, walked kid to school with dog.
Emptied dishwasher and cleaned kitchen in order to make,
Banana Bread.  But not before I
Stripped the bed to wash the sheets
And ran the Roomba in the bedroom.
While banana bread baked, I made ten small batches
of walnut pesto.  10 small batches because I don't have a
Food processor, only a mini-prep.
Then, I cleaned up after the banana bread and pesto, and decided to make a second loaf of
Banana bread, for a dear friend who lost her dearest dog, and if anyone deserves some lovin' from the oven,
Its her.
Then I made cookie dough, and put in the fridge to chill.
Then my mom took me to lunch, which I totally deserved because I was rocking the free world.
I picked up my offspring from school, and took her to piano lessons.
We came home and rolled out, cookie-cut and baked three dozen sugar cookies in the shapes of ghosts and pumpkins.
We made icing and decorated them.
Then my parents came over for a martini and to see the awesome black widow costume I made for Leila.  I truly am a wonder.
I cleaned the kitchen, put clean sheets on the bed.
Then I made a big bowl of flavorless geletin that will feel like guts at the third grade Halloween party tomorrow.

Now I am in my pajamas, about to pour a well-deserved bucket of wine, dig in to some Halloween candy, and watch some thing mindless on TV, while patting my self on the back, tooting my own horn and singing my own praises.

Tomorrow, I'll probably do something douchey again, but for now I am The Queen.

Thank you, and goodnight.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Am I a Douche Bag?

This is what happened tonight.  I think I should feel like a douche bag about it, but I don't.

Leila borrowed what's called a Newton's Cradle from a friend today.  It is supposed to look like this:
Kids seem to like to borrow crap from each other.  Before we left her friend's house, the thing got all tangled up, and I diligently and calmly untangled it.  So far, not a douche bag.  When we left, Leila forgot it on the table and I thought, oh good, she forgot about that thing.  One less piece of crap in my house.  Then she remembered, and ran back in and got it.  Shit.

So, of course, what happens next is that she effs around with it in the back of the car, and it gets all tangled up again.  Let me also add here that I don't feel very well, I have very limited patience, most of which has been used to untangle this stupid thing the first time, and the rest wandering around Joanne's fabrics looking for something that I don't even know the name of, to finish off her black widow costume.

We get home, and I am sitting at my desk trying to get the thing untangled.  I have pulled over my touch light so I can see better, but my hand keeps hitting the light and turning it off.  Then as I'm working, the whole shebang falls off the desk and any progress I have made is reversed and the thing looks like hell again.  Cue the boiling blood.  I am trying to tell Leila that she shouldn't borrow stuff like this.  That she should look at something cool in someone's house, and leave it where it is.  That when you borrow something, you are responsible for it, and I really don't feel like having to be responsible for other kids' crap.  Cue the impulse to throw the wretched thing across the room.

Finally, I give up.  It now looks like this:

Its either the Newton's Cradle or what's left of my sanity, and I choose me.  I tell Leila that she will just have to buy her friend a new one.  Now Leila is crying and saying I should never touch things like this!  I'm so horrible!  I hate myself!  Now here come the douchey part, but I still don't feel that douchey about it.  I say to her, "Don't say another word like that, because I don't have the energy or patience to make you feel better about yourself right now."

So she goes into her room to lick her wounds and do what she always does when I'm the meanest mom in the world: make a sign that says KEEP OUT!  with red marker.  That's how I know she really means it.  Then I make her come back out and feed the animals and have dinner, and while she's eating I try to lighten things up by lecturing her again, but in a funnier way, about how people's crap should just stay in there own house, and her crap should stay in our house, and that everyone should just hang on to their own crap and not borrow anyone else' crap.  At first she's laughing, but then she starts crying again, and accuses me of calling all her stuff crap.  Well, most of her stuff is crap, especially that Shaggy figurine from her Scooby Do action figure set that I had to glue the arm back on today, but I go on to explain that I am crabby enough that I am just swapping the word crap for the word stuff and she shouldn't take it personally.

Now she's reading on the couch, and I just realized I haven't had any wine!

So am I douche bag or not?  I think not.  I think its good for kids to see the whole spectrum of human emotion, and boy did I put on a show for her tonight...

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

I have a number of issues

Does anyone else hear voices while they are blow drying their hair, or is it only me?  I swear, I have to turn off the dryer several times during my coiffure because I am sure the phone is ringing or someone is leaving a message on my answering machine.  Do you think this is a problem?

Speaking of messages, I would really like it if all candidates, voters groups, PACs, and involved citizens would please STOP CALLING THIS HOUSE!  I get very excited when my phone rings, like its someone actually wanting to talk to me, or take me to lunch or something, and lately all it is political garbage.  Never mind about the junk mail.  None of these politicians can claim to be concerned about the environment with all the mailers they send out. 

I have a cold.  I thought I had narrowly avoided the whole cold thing after the sore throat I had the other day, but it came on like gang busters last night, and now I'm a kleenex-using machine.

I really don't have the energy for this today.  When you're a (bored) housewife, taking a day off really puts you behind.  I wouldn't think it would, given that I feel like I don't do a whole heck of a lot in a day, but if I take a day off, things start piling up.  Suddenly, there's no milk.  Suddenly, I need to make a halloween costume.  Animals are out of food, and no one has any underpants.  It was A DAY, PEOPLE! I have a bunch of basil to make pesto, but the last thing I want to do in this world is go to the store and buy pine nuts.  Jeez.

Sorry, I'm a little all over the place.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Soup's On!

We had rain all weekend, and you know how much I love that.  Today, though, its sunny again, dammit, but I made butternut squash soup anyway.  Leila is home sick, and I'm not feeling that great either, so I really wish it were still raining.  I've been pretty productive today, for me, and in spite of not feeling well. I've done some laundry, made soup, dyed my moms hair, and I plan to make banana bread and read some of my book club book.  I'm just so awesome. 

I came to a realization that I feel the need to share, mostly because nothing really interesting has happened in the last few days and I have nothing else to write about.  You know how I've been saying that I haven't cooked a good dinner in a long while, and we eat a lot out of the frozen food section of Trader Joes?  Well, delicious though that may be, I think I figured something out.  I don't like to cook summer foods like salads and bar b que and recipes that say "serve immediately."  Those are things you have to make at 5 in the evening, and why would I want to get off my ass, put down my wine, have my kid like a schnauzer around my ankles, and do work?  I like to cook winter foods, like soups and stews and hearty things like that.  I have more energy in the morning, not to mention some freakin' peace and quiet, so I make these wintery foods at around 9 a.m. and they sit and meld and are delicious by dinner time, and I look like a super star.  I do like my man to come home to a house that smells like cooking, and serve him up a hot meal, but not if I have to start at 5 and then clean up afterward.  Fuck that noise.  No sir.

So now that its getting colder, and the rainy season has started, I think I'll be doing a lot more cooking.  Sorry, Trader Joes, you wont be seeing me at least until this phase has passed and I need your delectable pulled pork. 

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Today is The Day!!

I'm gonna kick some ass today.  I'm gonna kick some ass, and take some names.  I'm gonna kick some ass, take some names, and do some laundry. 

I have been sitting around this house like an old, tired dog all week, and it shows.  There's crap everywhere you look, dishes, full hampers, cat hair etc. and it has to stop.  Rob also pointed out to me that he eats his breakfast from a box (instant oatmeal at work) his lunch from a box (frozen lunch from Safeway) and often his dinner comes from a box as well (Thanks, Trader Joes!)  Now, don't I feel like a douche bag?  I can't promise I'll make a fresh dinner tonight (that freezer is pretty full of boxes right now) but I have committed to not touching this computer, not talking on the phone, and not being sidelined until this place is cleaned up.  Its shameful.

Rob also wanted me to point out that the other night he came home from work and I was exhausted, so he made dinner and did the dishes.  He thinks he is unfairly characterized in this blog.  I know many of you probably think so, too, but he isn't  I went through all the posts with "Rob" in the subject, and at least a third of them are glowing, another third are neutral, and only one little third is crazy, bitching lunacy.  I think that perfectly sums up most marriages, don't you?

I'm off!  To kick some ass!  Take some names!  Blah Blah etc. etc...

Monday, October 18, 2010

Weekend Recap

Let's see... So the weekend...  Do you ever have those weekends when you know you did some stuff, but for a million dollars you couldn't say what?  That's the kind of weekend I had.  I know I ate a delicious enchilada, but that's about all.

Here's something, though.  I hang around this house all week doing stuff.  Admittedly not as much as I should be doing, if the pink mildew in the shower tiles in any indication, but I do stuff.  On Fridays, I try to make sure the basics are done; laundry, shopping, picking up, so we don't have to spend any time on the weekends doing these things.  I sometimes fail at this, but sometimes I don't.  On the weekends, I want to have a weekend, where I lay around, or we do stuff as a family.  I want a break from my normal routine.  On Sunday, Rob got a wild hair up his ass about how he wanted to "get stuff done" and I was supposed to hop to and participate.  I finally had to say, If you are feeling like getting stuff done, you go right ahead, but I feel like lounging around and having a weekend.  I'm glad he's motivated to get things done, but I couldn't tell you what he got done.  I know he was scurrying around here, but heck if I know what he was doing.  I have a whole list of stuff I want him to do, and I know he didn't do any of those things.  I cleaned out the coat closet and cleaned out all the magazines from under the coffee table.  Mission accomplished. Nap time.

And another thing!  Whilst cleaning out the coat closet, I found two coats in good condition to donate to the coat drive this winter, so I went to get a paper bag from under the kitchen sink and.... there weren't any.  I had at least three good shopping bags under there, with handles, and they're gone because Rob decided to throw them out.  So the coats I washed in preparation for donation are on the floor.  Why does he mess with my workplace in this way???  I gave him the whole, I don't come to your office and decided what goes and what stays! speech, and he countered with But this is my home! and that may be true, but DON'T TOUCH MY BAGS!  He can have full dominion over the coffee, and the garbage, and the recycling, and I'll even let him be in charge of the shower tiles, but don't touch my stuff!  This is like when I went searching high and low for the garlic press only to find out that he had thrown it out.  Who throws out a garlic press? We have an espresso machine that has made exactly 5 lattés in the last 14 years, but, by all means, throw out the garlic press.

I love a good rant on a Monday!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Am I Normal?

I helped a friend clean out her closet today... (tangent: this is a sick little fetish I have.  Show me a messy closet, and my adrenaline starts pumping and I just want to jump in and clean it out.  I want to bring bags of stuff to goodwill, I want to organize things by color, I get a little amped about it. Its a little unsettling) ... and I realized something:  I have no clothes.

The more closets I see, the more I realize that I may not be entirely normal when it comes to clothes.  Exhibit A) When I really need a pair of jeans (and right now I have two pair that are patched nine ways from Sunday, and I do not feel like I need a pair of jeans) I go out and suffer through the trying-on process and hopefully, if I'm lucky, walk away with one pair of jeans.  I then wear that very pair of jeans every single day until I wear holes in them.  This can take about three to six months (thanks, Gap.)  If I liked the jeans in the first place (not always the case, sometimes I just buy some to get it over with and hate them the whole time) I will cut up a pair of Leila's old jeans and patch up the holes.  I have a pair right now with four or five patches on them.  As I write this, I am getting more and more depressed. 

It turns out, women seem to have more than one pair of jeans.  They have lots of them.  And they don't wear out in six months because A) they don't wear the same pair every day and B) they wear things besides jeans, like white pants, or skirts, or work out clothes.  Huh.  Work-Out Clothes is a whole category I don't even have.  I have two categories: clothes, and pajamas.  End of list.

Exhibit B: Right now, I am feeling especially fancy because I have three bras in rotation.  They were on sale, so I bought the same one in three colors.  Normally, I have one bra that I wear every day.  Every.  Single.  Day.  When I need to wash it, I stay home, and when the underwire finally cries uncle, I go to Macy's and find a new one.  If the underwear drawers of my friends are any indication, this is also not normal. 

There are a couple of things at work here: 1: I am not a size small, or even medium, so shopping is not a fun day out for me.  Its an excruciating exercise in self loathing and humiliation.  2) My house is small enough that I don't have room for 15 bras and a dozen pair of jeans.  I don't even want to think about what the pile at the end of my bed would look like if I did.  3) Since I don't like shopping in the first place, shopping for bargains is an even bigger pain in the ass.  I find that if you really want some good deals, you have to shop on a regular basis, and that is about the last thing in the world that I want to do.  I go shopping about four times a year, buy two to three items, squeeze myself into them and go on with my life.

So what do you think?  Do I sound normal to you?  Should I clean out my boring t-shirts and patched up jeans and do a little shopping?  Should I bite the bullet?  Checks can be made out to Bored Housewife...

Friday, October 8, 2010


My mom caught an episode of the Kardashians last night.  My dad was watching a baseball play off game, so she turned on the TV in another room and surfed around until she stumbled on the Kardashians.  She was horrified.  She didn't realize it was a "reality" show, and when she found out this was a real "family", she was double horrified.  I thought for a moment that I had found in her someone with whom I could share my sick little love of the Kardashians, and maybe even pull her into Tori and Dean, but, sadly, no.  She was too grossed out, and changed the channel to watch a rerun of Larry King.  I have to hack in to her Netflix again and fill up her queue.

I am partying like a rock start tonight.  I'm going to drink and eat my weight in hors d'oeuvres and walk home.  Except that right now I feel nauseous.  It could be that I ate nothing but Lucky Charms yesterday.  I made a yummy healthy smoothie today, but I still feel like I'm going to puke.  I'd better not be pregnant.  I will be seriously crabby if that happens.  I have a friend who got pregnant accidentally, and when she found out, all she could say was, "I am so annoyed!"  Fast forward a few years, and now she has an adorable three year-old boy and she's annoyed for completely different reasons.

Can you tell I really don't have much to write about today?  I have a busy weekend ahead and I hope I don't burp through the whole thing like I am right now.  Ciao.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Shoe Blues

Leila told me this morning that she wanted to go shoe shopping after school.  This is significant because you have never met a little girl who is less particular about what she wears.  Every now and then she gets a wild hair up her ass about a certain skirt or something, but I pick out what she will wear every day, and lay it out on her bed.  When I ask her to do it herself, she puts on the same purple dress that is too small and looks like a nightgown.  I am sick to death of that dress, but Leila seems to be too lazy to put on anything that requires more than two steps: Step 1) put on underpants. Step 2) put on dress.  Done.  Shoes are for wimps.

She decided she wanted new shoes, and after going through all her shoes and noticing that she's grown out of most of them, I agreed.  We took grandma and her checkbook along, and went shopping.  Skip to the part where we've been to five stores, and have found nothing that Leila likes, or that fits, or that is the right color. The girl is walking back to the car, crying.  This was not the crying of a spoiled brat, though.  This was the crying of a little girl who was heart broken about not finding any shoes, was tired and thirsty and just wanted to go home.  I totally sympathized with her.  This describes almost every shoe shopping trip I've ever been on, which is why I wear flip flops every day.

I talked her in to making one more stop.  Nordstrom.  In the meantime, she decided she didn't't want "school" shoes anymore, she wants boots; knee high brown or black boots.  This is not exactly what grandma and I had in mind, but we were both so relieved when she found a pair of black boots, in her size, that fit, and didn't cost a year of college, that we bought them.   Now everyone is happy, even though I still think she needs "school" shoes.

Nordstrom was like an oasis after all those other crappy stores.  No one helps you with the shoes at those places, and there isn't even a place to sit down and try them on, let alone someone to measure your feet.  Leila was sitting on the floor wedged between two racks of clothes, trying on boots that were attached to eachother with a rubber band!  The Macy's doesn't even sell kids shoes.  What is wrong with the world today?  How about, Don't sell shoes if you don't have a place to sit down and try them on?  How about, Shoes made of plastic are not allowed to cost $85?  How about that?  Honestly.

So her first foray into self initiated shoe shopping ended happily, but some hard lessons were learned.  Shoe shopping sucks, and that's all there is to it.  When we got home she said, "I think I'm getting a mybrain headache..."

Monday, October 4, 2010

No Way, José!

A woman I barely know recently told me this story: She had two kids, the second one conceived through numerous IVF attempts.  She has the second kid, goes on the pill, all is well.  She is almost out of pills, so goes to the gyno to get a new prescription, gyno says, "You're pregnant.  With twins."  Gyno sends her directly to the hospital, because her pregnancy is considered high risk because she's been on the pill the whole time.  She gets a battery of ultrasounds, inside and out, and the gyno was wrong.  Its not twins.  Its triplets.  I swear to God.  True story.  How do you think that call to the husband went?  I'll tell you: she calls hubby from the hospital and says, "Guess where I am:"  SHE WAS ON THE PILL, PEOPLE!  And, if her attempt at a second kid was any indication, INFERTILE!

Well, I  also failed to have a second baby, after two years and more money than I care to think about, and I am on the pill, so I got to thinking: What if I found out I was pregnant?

At first I was excited.  Maybe I would have a little boy!  Whee!  Then I started to think about where this child and all his stuff (and kids have tons of stuff) would go, and I couldn't even get my arms around the heaven and earth that would have to move in order to make room for a baby in this house.  So I skipped past that part, and started doing simple math.  If I had a baby in the next year, Leila would be nine years older than this baby.  When the new baby turned nine, Leila would be leaving for college.  Leila would have been an only child for the first nine years, and the new baby would be an only child for the second nine years.  I would be in the same school district for 16 years.  The minute the first one was getting out of 8th grade, the second one would be starting kindergarten and I would have to do all this bullshit all over again (except that I would be working full time to pay for the addition to my house.) When Leila starts college, I'll be almost 50; when baby starts college, I'll be almost 60...   I got rid of almost all my baby stuff, and I doubt I could get someone to throw me a shower.  My friends are so over the baby stuff by now.  There probably wouldn't even be any hand-me-downs left.  I'd be screwed!  I'd have to re-buy car seats and strollers and baby bjorns and crib sheets and clothes, and ugh!

It was then that I began to stress.  I keep asking Rob if we would go ahead and have that vasectomy anyway, even though the chances are so remote, and he says he's not worried about it.  He says if I miraculously get pregnant, the kid is seriously meant to be, and so be it.  I still vote vasectomy.

I just had a chilling thought!  What if I got pregnant with triplets??!!  I can't even go there in my mind!  I think I'm going to have to lie down.  Vasectomy.  That's all I can think about now.  Vasectomy.  Vasectomy.  You know my fortieth birthday is coming up! That could be a good gift! Vasectomy!  The gift of reassurance that I wont have to spend my retirement savings on bibs and a breast pump and visits to the pediatrician!

Nope.  We are a one kid family.  For now and forever.  Unless...  Oh God, I can't even think about it...

Pretty cute though, huh?

Saturday, October 2, 2010

The Weird Dreams Continue

Last night I was in Tom Petty's entourage.  We went to a Mexican restaurant and were seated in a private room (because it was Tom Petty, and he had an ENTOURAGE.)  It was really boring, so I sneaked out to go for a walk...

Friday, October 1, 2010

Are You the Real Person, or the Vampire Version?

So last night I was being chased by vampires.  Not aggressively, but there were two of everyone, and one was the real person and one was the vampire version, and I had to use my cunning and wit not to fall prey to the wrong one.  Although, come to think of it, they looked more like zombies than vampires.  Anyway, the strange dreams continue, but I wont bore you further.

You know what I love about modern living? I love that I can turn the washer dial to Wash, turn the dryer dial to Start, press the Energy Saver button on the dishwasher, the Clean button on the roomba, and set the microwave to 15 seconds, and even though I'm sitting here chatting with you and eating room temperature leftover pizza (the best kind) I'm also doing a bunch of housework.  Isn't that awesome?  I feel like I'm working hard and being productive, but really I'm just pressing a series of buttons.  I'm like Mrs. Jetson!  Now I just need that five-armed robot that will go clean the shower tiles.  You know, if such a thing existed, I would save up all my pin money and get me one of those. I need me more robots.

This afternoon, Leila is hosting a dance contest.  Every year or so, she comes up with some brilliant idea for some party she's going to have.  One year it was a playground party, where all her friends were going to come to the playground and play and have snacks, another year all her friends were going to come and sing together.  These never happened.  I totally shined them on.  She didn't realize all the work I would have to do, and that all the other girls might not know or care to sing her favorite songs with her, so I just put them off until they fell off the edge of her memory.  So now we have the dance contest for which she has made ribbons and a big sign that took her all afternoon.  I feel badly enough about totally flaking on her other parties, that this one is going forward.  I have picked up the house, I have bought snacks, I have chilled wine for the moms.  Cover your ears if you don't like Lady GaGa and let the dancing begin!

The heatwave is mercifully over, and here is what happens
when you leave your candles out in the heat. 

Have a great weekend!

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Catching some zzzzz's.. I mean cheeeeese...

I have been having the weirdest sleep lately!  Starting with the President-Obama-and-his-flan dream, then not being able to sleep after 3:30 in the morning, then a snorefest, which I'll tell you about in a minute, then this morning I dreamt that I was sitting on a toilet with no walls around it and people walking by, and I had a big block of orange cheddar cheese in my hand, and trying to cut it with a butter knife which proved difficult.  I was literally sitting on the toilet, trying to cut the cheese.  Honestly.  I have woken myself up with my own farts before, but this is ridiculous.

The one night I did have a most delicious, long, dreamless sleep, I woke up in the morning, took Leila to school, them came home and slept for two more hours.  It was wonderful.  Rob told me on the phone later that I was snoring like my dad for hours during the night.  He jiggled the bed and I stopped for a minute, but then I went right on sawing logs.  Must have been that pill I took that was leftover from my last trip to the dentist.  That's not the best part, though.  The best part is that he knew that I'd been having trouble sleeping and not feeling well so he didn't wake me to get me to stop snoring!  He let me keep him up all night so I could sleep!  Isn't that the sweetest thing, EVER??  Poor guy.  He really needs his nine hours, too.  I don't normally snore, (or fart myself awake for that matter) and neither does Rob.  He was surprised the dog didn't start barking at the noise and we didn't get complaint calls from the neighbors.

Other than that, I am feeling much, much better.  I washed the dog today, I'm getting caught up on some laundry, I even mopped my kitchen floor for the first time in 2010.  I had a pack of peanut butter m&ms, and then read on the package that it was the "sharing size for two!"  Awesome.  The floor is still wet, and I don't know what to do now.  Pay some bills? Go through the pile of magazines and catalogs? reorganize the hall closet?  Take a little nappy?.....

Monday, September 27, 2010

You Give Me Fever

I got sick just in time for the weekend.  I would have gone into a complete panic and started lining up child care for what was sure to be another hospital stay, but I was too tired.  You know what bugs me about being sick, aside from, y'know, not feeling that great?  Its that I will give myself over to the virus, in this case for two days, just laying around, drinking tea, watching movies, wasting away, and then on Monday morning, I'm still sick!  Its not fair!  I gave two full days to this thing, and its still around.  I don't feel any worse, but I don't feel that much better.  I have a whole Brenda Vaccaro thing going on.

I did decide to just bust on through it today, though.  We were out of milk, and I had a plan to get my toenails done with a friend and I wasn't going to pass that up, so I just muscled through.  I still don't feel too great, and I think its time for more advil.  I watched the original Wall Street movie (Charlie Sheen was just a baby!) and Looking for Mr. Goodbar.  Wow.  If you've never seen it, just be okay with that and move on with your life.

We're also having a heat wave, and you know how much I hate the heat.  Laying on the couch is not all that relaxing when you're sweating and thinking you must have a fever.

Is that enough bitching and moaning for you?  Don't I have anything nice to say at all?  My toenails look real perdy, and I had a delicious sandwich.  This coke I'm drinking is awesome, and tonight I get to watch Mad Men.  In a few minutes, I will take L to piano lessons where she will kick some serious piano ass, and then I will come home and faint from the heat and not make dinner.  At some point in there, I will run the dryer because its too hot for the heat from the dryer to make any difference.  Rob just has to have the red shirt TODAY!   You know, I do have a pretty good story about L opening her first bank account, but it will wait for another day.  Ciao.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Underpants Flashing

Where have I been, you ask?  I ask the same thing.  I've been sleepy, people.  I've been busy doin' stuff, I've been eating and napping.  The week has just slipped through my chubby little fingers, and now its already cocktail time.

I worked at Leila's old preschool today, for fun and profit.  I figured it would be easier than it used to be since I don't have to take any of those little effers home afterward, and I was right.  I forgot how much crying there is in preschool.  But they are some sweet little buggers, man.  One girl kept pulling her dress up and rolling around on the carpet and then saying, "don't look at my underpants!"  Well, stop SHOWING THEM TO ME!  Another little kid had swiped his grandmother's cell phone and was carrying it in his pocket, and it was ringing all morning.  We finally realized during morning circle time that it wasn't a toy, and when the teacher answered it, it was the phone's owner, frantically wondering where her phone was.  That was pretty awesome.

I met a little girl named Eve and a little boy named Charlie whose overflowing cuteness knocked me out.  So cute.  And then I went home to nap in peace and quiet, and I didn't have to wipe any noses, or change any diapers.  Like early grandparenthood.

Ahhh, well, hm.  I don't really have a whole lot to talk about.  I had another stupid dream where Rob hired the aging cast of the Brady Bunch to come to my birthday party, and they outnumbered my actual friends.

I'll write again when something actually happens.  Peace out.

p.s. It was my blogerversary the other day.  Two years of random bullshit!  Congratulations to me, I finally found a hobby!

Monday, September 20, 2010


I had a dream last night that I was advising President Obama.  He was serving flan at his meetings and people were falling asleep, so I suggested he serve hard boiled eggs and fruit.

Why did my brain need to be filled with that nonsense last night?  I could have used a long, dreamless sleep, but instead, I'm telling the President what to serve at meetings in the oval office, and its food I don't even like! 

I'm having a hard one today.  Really tired, and somehow unsettled.  I'm trying to figure out exactly what's bugging me.  It could be the unpleasant woman I had words with yesterday, it could be that my Sunday was just especially tiring, it could be that my toenails look ghastly, it could be something I ate, I have no idea.  All I know is, after I came back from the grocery store this morning and put all the crap away, I went back to bed in my clothes - including adorable scarf - and slept like the dead for two and a half hours.  Then I got up and made a smoothie and had a bowl of lucky charms.  I think this day is over for me.   I'm just going to bide my time, doing as little as possible, until bedtime and start over tomorrow.  This day is a mulligan.  A do-over.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Dryer Update

I tried to include a link to a New York Times article about using less detergent, but it made me sign in and stuff and I was not into that, so I thought I would just tell you about it today.  Then I'll stop writing about dryers because, honestly, I can't believe I've written about them this much.

Okay, so the article was echoing what I was saying, about using way less detergent.  It said to do a test:  Put some of your towels into the washer on hot with no detergent.  Start the washer and watch to see if any suds form.  If suds are forming, they are detergent residue from the towels themselves!  Crazy!  It took one lady six washes before all the soap was out of her towels.  I did this test today, and I had no suds.  I was a little disappointed.   I also had to leave to pick up the kid from school, so I didn't add the vinegar.

Okay, I've started to bore myself.  Time for a nap!  If you want to read the article, search on detergent, New York Times.  I think you'll find it.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

I'm So Freakin' Old

God, I'm so fat and sleepy and old and hungry.  I got new lenses in my glasses.  I hadn't had my eyes checked for seven years (I thought it had been, like, four) and my right eye was exactly the same, but my left eye was all effed up.  My old prescription was just barely a prescription; just so I didn't get headaches while using the computer.  But the new one... whoa.  These things are actually like glasses rather than a wardrobe accessory.  The eye doctor guy looked at my file and saw my age (39 and 10 months) and was all "Oh.  Yeah, well, you're at that age."  uh huh, yeah...

So now I'm looking at my screen with these new old-lady glasses, and I think they're making me nauseous.  That's normal right? I can't accidentally wear them across the house to go check the laundry, I learned that the hard way.  I'll have to get one of those little beaded strings that ladies of a certain age attach their glasses to so they can read menus and parking tickets.

And!  I am hungry all the time.  I just want to eat eat eat.  I guess that's not new, but its really intense right now, and no, I'm not getting my period.   I eat something, and I just want to eat more.  And I don't even have the benefit of being high.

Here's something totally else, though.  The post I did on appliance maintenance the other day?  That post got me more attention in the schoolyard than a bad reputation.  Bored Housewives all over the place had all kinds of questions about their washer and dryers.  I feel like I should ask the maintenance man who came to my house to do a seminar in my living room where I serve cosmopolitans and he explains how to flush the water pump on your washing machine.  I forgot to tell you the most important thing he said!  Its about detergent, for dish washers and for washing machines: for a front loading washing machine, A) only use high efficiency detergent (the regular kind gets way more sudsy and can kill your washer,) and B) only use a shot-glass full.  He said he uses powdered detergent and actually put a shot glass in the box to remind his wife.  The same is apparently true for top loaders and  dishwashers.  Do not go by what the label on the detergent says!  I have tried it for you on about six loads of laundry, and I can attest that there has been no difference between the loads I did with a half a cup or more of detergent, and the shot-glass amount.  All our underpants are clean and fresh as ever.

And with all the money you save on detergent, you can take me to lunch.
Now I have to take these damn glasses off and go throw up.