Friday, November 28, 2008

Okay, this one is weird....

We were just finishing up dinner last week, pizza, when Ryan suddenly swooped in on me and gave me a kiss.

He pinned my head back, before I had a chance to wipe the pepperoni-ness off my mouth, and laid one on me. My lips were slightly parted as I was about to tell him "hang on a sec." MMMMMM-WAAAAAAH!! he smacked, turning on his heel and exiting the room as he noted, "Mmm, that was good!!!" complete with a fisted little arm swing for emphasis.

I had to wonder what he was referring to, me or the pizza. Mauled by my own boy.

I'm adding that to the "He did what?" list of parenting moments.

Granted, it's a little odd; but he's gonna not even want to be seen standing next to me in public soon, so I'll let this one slide.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

A bar of soap should be on my plate

I have no idea if the little scribbler guy is on this page.

Remo tagged me with it, and I am still working the kinks out over here (heh heh heh, she said "kink") so I have no idea if it will make it.

Fair enough. I have to think of some blogs to mention anyway, and I am pressed for time (have to go pick up the oldest soon, he's at a band thing, and---this will make Remo look outside to see if it's raining---I STAYED HOME.

But on with my post.

About 2 months or so ago, my brother called me and asked me if I would take in his dog. The dog is a Chihuahua, about a year old, and the poor little guy's name is "Coco." Very unmasculine, but I didn't name him. Anyway, the long story short is he asked me to do it because he knows Mr W likes the dog and the dog likes him; and he thought it would be better if the dog wintered with us (my brother lives in Northern Az, where it snows) and maybe, well "If he works out okay and everyone likes him, you guys can keep him, it can be kinda a present for Mr W."

I should have known better.

The only present from that dog I get are the tiny, brown kind. Well, unless you count the puddles.

He is not neutered. He marks.
He was not crate trained, but I won.
He doesn't even really come to his name. (I can hardly blame him.)

My lap and my attention are not what he seeks, unless I am in the kitchen, then all of a sudden, I'm his best friend. The rest of the time he treats me with the kind of indifference I last experienced from the boys I went to high school with.

I believe the dog hates me.

However, I am patient, and I still feed him and seek him out, making an effort to procure his friendship outside of the food I might have on my plate.

But even my patience has limits. And I think, if I keep it up, he will start answering to what I usually call him.

"Where is that Little Bastard?" I usually ask, through gritted teeth. Paper towels/chewed up shoe/peed-on item in my hand.

I had no idea I called him that so frequently until last night. It was Audrey's turn to feed him and Ben was with her in the garage, helping her out. Suddenly, he's doubled over in laughter.

"Mom. Did you hear that?" he gasps out between giggles.

"What? No," I answer.

"She went into the house, swung the door open, and said, "Where is that Little Bastard-dog?"

Ooops. In my head, I could almost hear her saying that....and I couldn't stop laughing.

I walked into our room and held my wrist out to Mr W. "Just smack it," I instructed him, as I tried to gasp out the story between giggles myself.

I had a word with Audrey later, about not repeating what she hears come out of Mommy's mouth.

And I made a promise to myself to refer to the dog as "LB" instead.

(I'll have to finish the tagging part later, it's time to go get the boy.)

Friday, November 21, 2008

Did I say that?

I started laughing, snorting, crying...

Ben looked at me like I needed to be medicated. "Mom? What's so funny?" he asked.

I was on my way to take him to school.


He was missing his extracurricular class, but it wasn't my fault.

You see, there are some mornings my life is a sitcom, and yesterday was one of them. I was running late (for real) and trying to get everyone out the door, bad hair day be damned, and as I am ushering the chicks out of the coop, Ben stops dead in his tracks and announces he needs the bathroom, in the voice that tells me he's going to be a while.

Fabulous. Why? Why now?? It's deja vu, in a dirty-diaper-blowout-all-over-your-lap-as-you-are-about-to-leave-for-work sense. I sigh.

"Go," I point to the bathroom, "I'll drop these kids off and come back for you."

When I got back, he was heading down the hall to me. I throw some things in my own lunchbag, and grab my water bottle, I'm turning towards the door, when he gets a weird look on his face.

And says something about his underwear feeling funny, complete with hip wiggle.

"I think these are Ryan's," he explains.
"FIX them," I say through gritted teeth.

Finally, we are on our way, and about a mile down the road, when this rant just spews forth:
"I don't know what it is about you and taking a crap," I say (you have to understand, that for most of his early years, God bless him, he used to have to disrobe ENTIRELY when he was going to be a while, it was a production) "I mean, why should you take so long?" I start beating my open palm against the steering wheel for emphasis: "You go in." (beat) "You take a crap." (beat) "You get out." (beat) "What's so hard about that?"

I wasn't mad. It was just one of those frustrated-mom moments that bubbled out into the open. He looked at me, a bit chagrined, and I swear I saw him roll his eyes, 'is-she-done-yet-can-I-turn-up-the-radio?' all over his face.

We driven a bit further when I had my laughing fit. Which brings us back to the beginning of my story.

"What's so funny?" he asked when I paused for a breath.

"Dude, the things I find myself saying, the conversations I have with you kids, because of you kids, sometimes, it's absurd. You have to see how funny that is... I had a flash, of all the ridiculous things that have come out of my mouth: 'Don't eat your boogers.' 'Do that in private.' 'You take a crap too slow.' It's hilarious, when you think about it."

He started laughing too. "I guess so."

He was just delighted that I wasn't ranting anymore.

Just like his father, he's relieved when I stop raving and start smiling.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008


I have been obsessed, I am obsessed...with a much younger man.

Okay, a fictitious much younger man...who happens to be a hot teenage vampire.

I can't remember when I first read the book, but I can tell you I just finished reading Twilight again last week. The movie opens Friday, and I am like a man who has taped his favorite sporting event to watch later, I'm trying to avoid the newspaper, tv, and radio. Sure, I know what happens. But I don't want my anticipation bubble burst by someone else's opinion.

I don't know what it is about Edward, the hot teenage vampire, that has me so mesmerized.

Well, maybe I do.

He's polite, and old fashioned; handsome, articulate, heroic...and not necessarily the good guy, unless it comes to the lead female character in the story. He's amazing with her, for her.

I'll be sitting there, reading away, and as I get through certain passages, I find myself holding my breath, hand over my heart, melting.

I hope that happens as I see it onscreen.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Check please

Last week our school had their fall festival. I didn't have to be there for a couple of hours, but a couple of the Moms from school that I am friends with had to stay at school for the set up, as well as through the festival to run it. As I went to pick up my kids, I thought maybe my friends' children might want to come and hang out with me, as opposed to being stuck at school while their Moms were busy.

The only fly in the ointment was that I had to go to Costco for one thing before getting Ben at school. No biggie, I thought, we'll still have time to get some pizza at the food court and zip on over for Ben.

I should know better. I should know better than to think that a quick trip to Costco with three 6 year olds and Ryan would not be quick.

The children behaved, but of course the item I needed had been relocated due to the Christmas stock and we wound up doing a couple of laps through the store while I hunted for it. "Wow!" "Look!" "Mommy, can I try that?" was all I heard as my little band stopped every fifteen feet to look at something "Cool!". Eventually we made it to the checkout, and after stopping a game of skipping that got a little rowdy (at an empty register nearby) I was on the home stretch. I mentally calculated the time to get the pizza and the time I had to get to Ben.

"Hey, you guys can eat in the car, right?" I asked, crossing my fingers against spills and choking.

"Yes," they chorused.

I was looking at the cashier as if that would somehow make him go faster when I heard a giggle. Giggle, giggle....and a pointed finger in front of me, "Ha, ha, that says NAKED," the adorable little guy along with me announced loudly with glee. "Naked!" he pointed it out to the girls. Who also started giggling and saying "naked" far more loudly than need be.

I sighed, stifling a giggle myself, wondering what his Mom would think when all he reported to her of our trip to the store was "Naked!" Luckily the gentleman behind me in line, to whom the Naked juice belonged, was highly amused, and chortled himself. My mind whirled, looking for a way out.....

"That's good reading, J," I complimented him. "Wow. You're getting really good at it!" Encouraged, he started reading everything else in front of him. "That says 'red peppers' and that says 'cheese'," he continued with pride as he touched each package. "Sugar," I stopped his hand, "it's probably not a good idea to touch other people's food like that," I said. "What kind of pizza would you like?" I asked, as I could see the finish line. "Can I have a churro for dessert?" he asked.

I love a boy who has his priorities straight.

They got loaded up into the van, three peas in a pod, pizza in their laps....churro by one of their sides. I drove carefully and tried not to worry about the time.

Finally--I pulled around the corner and saw Ben sitting on the curb. He scowled at me until he opened the door to the van. Upon seeing the children, and what they were eating, he grinned widely.

"I can see why you're late."

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

It's nineteen eighty-_______ ........

In some parts of the lab, we aren't allowed to wear headphones. So when we are working in these places, we usually have a radio blaring or if possible, internet radio blaring. Internet radio is good because you have a better chance of finding music that pleases the masses.

The boys tend to listen to super hard rock, but I can't do that for extended lengths of time or I start feeling really aggressive, in a "You talking to me? Cuz I'll kick your ass..." kind of way. I tend to like pop-y stuff, stuff I can sing along to under my breath, stuff I don't have to think to hard Madonna (a guilty pleasure, for sure).

One day, a couple of weeks ago, one of the boys left the room, and he set it to Madonna for me before he left. Another friend of mine was working with me and after about ten minutes, she asked if we could "maybe listen to something a little less...eighties?" "Whatever," I said, biting back a comment about how maybe she didn't want to date herself in front of the young man who just left us.

I also chuckled inwardly, as I thought to myself, "If she only knew...."

If she only knew that I had done something uber-eighties just that Sunday before.

Another coworker and I had gone to a concert together. A good friend of hers had extra tickets and she invited me to.......ahem...a Rick Springfield concert. It doesn't get any more eighties than that, does it???

It doesn't. And that is perfectly okay.

I went along because I figured there are worse ways to spend a Sunday night, the venue was small, and I knew I liked at least one of his songs.

Having spent my entire high school career wanting to be Jessie's Girl, or at least using that as the reason why I had no one beating down my "she's taken" door, I could not resist.

We dutifully went to our assigned seats, and made polite small talk while we waited for the show to start. About 10 minutes before showtime, we noticed a bunch of ladies all start walking towards the apron of the stage. No way, I thought. Rushing the stage at Rick Springfield? In 2008??

Should we? We looked at each other, naaaahhhh,, hesitating.

He came out.

We hesitated no longer. We were not disappointed, either.

Down in the front of the stage, a mere five people back from the front of it, I eyed his leather jacket. It was perfectly distressed, but it appeared to be from wear, not because he bought it that way. I kinda hoped he'd throw it into the crowd, but totally forgot about it once he took it off.

Because ladies, that man had a surprisingly impressive set of guns. Not too bulky, nicely defined--you know--the kind of arms that let you know you're being held. I poked my friend and mouthed "wow." Who knew?

I bounced around, singing along, surprising myself that I knew a lot the songs, not so surprised when I started placing them in my teenage timeline. He was really friendly with the crowd, and wasn't too cheesy at all (although there were, I admit, a couple of cheesy moments). He went to all sides of the stage, whipping the ladies into a frenzy.

I'd forgotten how good looking he was (how is that possible?) until I looked up at precisely the right moment, purely luck, as he looked right at me. (Okay, so maybe not right at me, but at the ten other girls around me and me.) . Hit fully by the force of those green, green eyes, I felt my heart just stop for a second. There he was, not fifteen feet away from me, all green-eyed, sweaty, six-foot-one of him. With his guitar. Oy. I swooned like the fifteen year old girl I once was.

It was great fun; I had a really good time. He went up into the audience, and was in the tiny space in front of some lady's seat, playing away. I thought she was going to come unglued, I still have no idea how she managed to stay composed when all the people around her were just going apeshit.

After the show, we stood around outside, marveling at how awesome he looked. We started speculating how old he must be, about how old we were (back in his soap opera days and now), finally settling on late 40's/early 50's. My curiosity was piqued, so I looked him up when I got home.

He's 59.

Which should make me feel "ewww" in a bad way, but instead makes no difference, as I feel "rrrrrr" in another way. (Seriously, his earring bothered me way more than his age does. You can check it out. Google him, there's pictures on his website.)

The show was about an hour, hour and a half, and he sang the entire time; totally energetic and interacting with the audience. Not bad for an old guy.

An old guy who is the new guilty pleasure on my iPod.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

The Big Squeeze

I was in Target with Audrey, walking down the aisles from point a to point b when I got distracted. I looked to my right, and she looked to my left----and bolted across the aisle to the ladies underwear section. She pointed to a rack of thongs, and asked, loudly, "Mommy! What's this?"

Before I could reply, she picked one up.

Not seeing this as a teaching moment, particularly since one of the boys was with us, I just replied "underwear" and "put it down" as I kept briskly walking by, knowing she'd follow me. I knew I wasn't off the hook, but I also knew she'd get interested in something else, why make a big deal out of it?

Of course, I still heard my Nana's voice in my head, hissing "cochinas!" as in "only for dirty girls." Nanas are kind of strict that way.

It made me think about my first bra. White. Unadorned, except for a little rosebud in the front. Because lace, color, and too much adornment--"cochinas!"

If she only knew what was in my undie drawer right now.....she'd whip out her rosary.

It seems a little odd, I know, for my Nana to have ever been interested in my underwear, but it's just one of those things; one of my Nanas lived with us when I hit puberty, and the other, being the mother of 3 girls herself, knew what was going on even without me telling her. There was no way they'd let me get away with "cochina."

But back to the bra. And what goes in it.

I had my first mammogram earlier this week.

The thought of someone else, even a trained medical professional, handling the tas made me a little queasy. Not to mention I've seen that machine. I know how it works.

I was all bravado, sitting in the lobby, blithely texting Nolan while filling out my paperwork.

Mr W showed up, there for yet another of my rites of passage, supportive as always.

When lady called my name, and he asked if he should accompany me, and I told him I'd be fine, handing him my book and turning around before he could see unease cross my face.

She led me to another waiting room, and inside it, opened the door to another little room, a dressing room. She gave me the instructions in a soothing tone, (what does she mean, wear that out open in the front?), and left me. There was a giant mirror mounted on the wall, fatly edged in gold. If I am going to be topless in front of a mirror like that, I thought, shouldn't there be someone sliding money through a slot somewhere on the other side of it?

I changed and went back out into the waiting room, where I nervously thumbed through a magazine, angled away from the door, holding the front of the gown together and hoping no one else was going to come in and join me.

A few minutes passed before the tech came back, signaling me to follow her down the hall to the room where we'd get the pictures. As I followed her, I noticed the door to the lobby was a little open, and I almost ran into her in my haste to get out of line of sight of anyone on the other side of the door.

And suddenly, I was face to face with it. The Flattener 2000.

My mouth was suddenly dry. The tech explained what she needed me to do, and I tried not to flinch at the coldness of her hands as she positioned Boob A on the equally cold plate. As she patted my breast into place, I resisted quipping, "Shouldn't we have dinner and a movie first?" or "Have we been formally introduced?"

I secretly hoped she'd say my boobs sure didn't look 40.

I mean, I don't mind my boobs, I think they are not a bad size (a nice handful) and they served me well in nourishing my children. But I still lament gravity. The brown vs. pink. Their tendency to look more National Geographic than Playboy.

Thank goodness for the smoke and mirrors of a good pushup deep plunge underwire. Not white.

If I hadn't been so nervous, I might have giggled at the coordination involved: "Okay, now turn your hips this way," as she positioned my hips; "good, now tilt your chin back," um, what?; "hold on here," as she moved my hand to the bar; "now, hold your breath," wait, I need to take one in; "good"; is it over? She stepped back around and freed my boob. Which, to its credit, sprang back into shape, offended. I started putting the gown back on my shoulder to take the other side off when she told me "oh, hang on, we need another picture" as the Flattener 2000 came to life and turned the plates 45 degrees.

I raised an eyebrow. Now, there's a trick, I thought, trying not to think about how my boob was going to get into that position. I mean, I'm limber, but there are limitations.

Getting the boob on the plate (pat, pat) was not that bad...but this view is one that gets up into your armpit too, and if I didn't feel like a piece of meat before, I sure felt like one now.

There was more choreography, of the same kind, but with "drop your other shoulder" added, five, six, seven, eight, jazz hands, aaaannnd "hold your breath!" I tried to think I was anywhere but there, but this is one of those things that you just can't really detach yourself from.


Whew. Halfway there.

Crap. Halfway there.

Put the gown back on the right, take the gown off on the left, here we go, one more time! Aaaand high kick!

Once we were done, she explained to me how I'd get my results, hopefully by Friday. I nodded sagely, very 'I do this everyday.'

I walked back into my little dressing room, and I can honestly say, I have never looked at my bra with so much relief before ever in my life. It was one of my favorites, a smooth bright blue number with just the right stuff to make the girls feel better.

As we exited the building, Mr W looked at me, brow knit, patting my shoulder, "Are you okay?"

"We're fine," I reassured him. "Just a little cold."

I would ordinarily have suggested he help me out with that, but the tas just weren't ready to receive any more visitors.