Thursday, June 30, 2005

Baseball game

hot summer evening

"A" league team

young girl earnestly sings the national anthem

sweat rolling down my temples

hot dog and a soda

seats way up the first base line

late afternoon sun is relentless

our little league team parades around the field

pictures of my boy with the mascot

buy myself a beer

the home team's losing

the boy gets an autograph - visiting team, doesn't matter

chat with the other moms

dragonfly almost lands on my foot

sun sets

final score 10-0

Wednesday, June 29, 2005

Change of Plans

Being that I don't have to go to work, the plan for today was:

  1. swimming
  2. swimming
  3. more swimming

the plan is now apparently:

  1. complain about rain
  2. rent movies
  3. clean the house (oh, the horror....)

Happy Birthday Sue

....my sister, who may or may not even read this blog, LOL

Monday, June 27, 2005

I will die in a supermarket

... of that I am certain.

If you missed this this and this you won't get the full effect but here is today's chapter.

This is what I did:

  1. Go to market.
  2. Get stuff to fill cart while kids are generally whining and complaining (tired, sunburned, have to go to the bathroom, no I want this kind of juice, blah blah blah...)
  3. Drive home past bank sign which is so wrong it's a town joke, but sign says 100 degrees
  4. Walk inside, unlock door, etc.
  5. Decide since it's SO hot I'll take off my shoes, the ones that I always trip in when I'm walking at lunchtime, and put on flip flops
  6. Walk outside and start to empty trunk
  7. Pick up bag, which stupid stockboys have shoved full of stuff
  8. Fail to notice as bag rips
  9. Notice completly, when 22 oz can of spray starch crashes down onto my toe, (now NAKED, because I'm wearing flip flops) and the can of course hits justright and the rolled metal (thank God) edge on the very bottom of the can cuts said toe as it can inflict even MORE pain that way.
  10. Swear a-plenty. Cry some.
  11. Bandage toe which is bleeding profusely.
  12. Consider calling store to complain.
  13. Open Coors Light instead.

Dammit.

Sunday, June 26, 2005

Here's to the class of '05

I went to a graduation party for a girl who babysat for me, two summers ago. She watched the kids for me 3 days a week while I was at work. They loved her.

It's no surprise to me that she was salutatorian of her class. She's smart, and works hard. When she watched my kids, they got up, made their beds right after breakfast, and the house was always cleaned up when I got home. They did dishes, worked on a little workbook stuff now and then, and just generally kept busy doing useful things. I would have her work for me every summer, but she knew even then she wanted to be a pharmacist, and she works in the local pharmacy while she gets ready to go to college for the same this fall.

It was miserably hot here today - at least 95. Blah!!! We finally left the party around 7 and went to my inlaw's house which is very close by. My daughter was making such a big production about how "I'm too scared" to jump into the pool that after 15 minutes of "I'm going to jump I'm about to jump I can't do it" I finally got disgusted with the whole thing and pushed her in. Yes I did. What?? Mr. C was right there and it was NOT the deep end.

I'd love to say she happily jumped in over and over after that.... hah! I know that by the end of summer she will though.

It occurred to me recently that my daughter is not going to wear the same school uniform anymore. The little girls wear a little jumper over a blouse, and the bigger girls wear a different kind of shirt, with a pleated plaid skirt. She's growing up so fast. The moodiness is starting (what's wrong? nothing...) One of the kindergarten teachers told B that she should be a teacher because many times at recess (after lunch) she would volunteer to go down to help supervise the kindergarteners at their recess. It's supposed to rotate through all of the class but most of the other girls just wanted to play dodgeball with ....the boys.

I am looking forward to her graduation and dreading it all at once. It is 8 years away but I know that I'll turn around and it will be here. I can only hope and dream that she will turn out as wonderful as the girl we celebrated with today. And so I will push her into the pool when I think she needs it, because I want her to learn how to take a chance and see exactly how much she can do.

Saturday, June 25, 2005

Ho Ho this

A very annoying person who shall not be named pointed out to me today that "Six months from today is Christmas!"

Are you effing kidding me? Shut up.

I have to order uniforms for next year for my kids for school, return their books from this year to a different school (because that's how it works sometimes when you go to a Catholic school), deal with teeth that need to be removed, get new glasses for at least one kid, buy school supplies plus new lunchboxes and backpacks and help with summer reading assignments.... that's all just before September first and that's not even the FUN stuff we want to do!

(Great Escape(six flags), Camping(in a cabin thank you), trip to Statue of Liberty, parasailing on Lake George with my crazy brother in law, assorted random trips to pools at friends & relatives, a trip to the local baseball park, movies, mini golfing, and various other adventures )

The fall will be packed full with the birthdays of me, Mr C., both my kids, AND my brother in law is expecting a new baby ...

So I don't want to think about Christmas, because there's a chance I could move to a new house by then. Or not..... who knows. Let's not wish away the entire rest of the year, when I'm just at the front door of Summer, eh?

High Roller

Going to a casino is fun. Blinky lights, bells, throwing away all your damn money in stupid machi......

Ahem.

Well the ladies I work with planned a girl's night out and we all went to the casino near here last night. It's technically not a REAL casino, it is a racino, which means you can play slots and bet on fixed horse races but you can't play real card games at a table or dice, roulette, etc.

I think T was making fun of me a good portion of the night but A) I didn't have to watch my kids who are bouncing off the walls now that school's out and B) she bought me beers, so I'm fine with that.

One woman sitting next to me while I was playing a $5 slot machine (oh, kidding, it was nickels but you all know that) was driving me really crazy because every time I'd spin, she'd look over to see how I was doing. What up, bitch, do you want to press the button for me? (hahaha as if I'd ever say that to anyone, I'm a total wimp)

We actually brought along a guy we work with as our designated driver, and he was really nice about it. As you can imagine not many men are cut out to be the only guy taken along on a ladies night out but he was very cool about it. He doesn't drink at all and we all really like him so he is the perfect DD. This being a good idea was reinforced by a gruesome sort of accident we saw being cleaned up on the way home. So when you party, always bring a guy like D.

It is going to be about a billion degrees here today, so I am off to the pool. Adios!

Friday, June 24, 2005

School's out for summer....

...which means today I am not "at" work, so I am weeding, rinsing the green out of my little fountain(d'oh), and generally trying to make the inside of the house look like I actually do clean it once in a while.

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

Clicking through the channels of my mind

click:

Well today's CAKE meeting wasn't nearly as fun as the other one, but we did have someone suddenly shouting "Shut up! SHUT UP!" in the middle of the meeting. It was apparent he was Shutting Up a dog, but still Oh, So Awkward.

Our meeting coordinator said in a very professional tone, "Just a reminder, if you are not asking a question, please be sure your phone is muted". The Shouter immediately replied in a sheepish voice, "Oh.... I'm not muted, am I?" which was a hell of a lot funnier than it sounds right now.

Of course, you couldn't hear anyone laughing, because WE were all MUTED!

click:

baseball... almost over... I swear to what-ever that if my son does not leave the cup alone I will go out there on the field and take it out of his shorts right there. Dammit.

The coach, AKA the Guy Who Looks Like Old Billy Joel was there, yes. He commented on the fact that we managed threeeeeeeeeeee innings in 2 hours.

click:

I tried a new cookie, Pepperidge Farm Whims, which are basically good enough that you will eat all five servings at once. But you need milk, they're crunchy. Do Not Grocery Shop While Hungry!! These are never coming into my house again.

click:

Right by the window outside of Johnny's cube is a great place to have a cell phone conversation. The reception there is awesome.

Sunday, June 19, 2005

Question of the day (night)

There are days when I have a really hard time winding down and going to sleep, even though I am tired and I know I have to get up early for work. This is one of those days.

(I'm switching to my summer schedule this week. It's 3 full days a week instead of 5 half days. So tomorrow will be a VERY long day and there will be some chaos in my house this week as school lurches to a stop and I try to figure out what I can make for dinner in between D's last baseball games. )


If you could be invisible, where would you go?

You are not allowed to use the following, as they are my answers:

  • my kid's school so I could make sure no one was picking on them, and see what their personalities are really like when Mom is not hovering over them
  • the Yankee's locker room, post-game (shallow, yes, but equal parts honesty)
  • follow Dubya around all day to see what he's really up to
  • the O.R. during a heart transplant, because it would be amazing to watch even though I'm a bit squeamish when it comes to that type of thing... no one would notice me when I passed out, since I'd be invisible
  • backstage at the Oscars to see what all of the celebs are really like

ok, I can't think of any more, because I am tired (does this mean this blog entry puts even ME to sleep? Uh oh......)

Father's Day

Well, let's see

  • shopping for a card went about as well as shopping for a Mother's day card. (which, if you're a new reader, means "not very well at all" because there are no cards that say "I'm sorry we're not very close and I know you worked your ass of all of those night shifts and I *AM* grateful for all you did to provide for me but I feel like I barely know you" The cards I see all talk about how "You've always been there with advice or to lend a helping hand" and that's just not in my scrapbook.)
  • my son left his Father's day present at school. There were tears. I had a gift (a DVD, about the Yankees) that I swapped in but he was still very despondent.
  • it never occurred to me to do "breakfast for dad in bed" .....oops.

Well, at least the weather was nice.

Friday, June 17, 2005

Habib the Lotto guy

So, my co workers and I throw in two bucks each every Friday and we buy lottery tickets.

Last summer we were off our usual path and I walked into this little gas station and Habib sold me my tickets. He was, well, a little bit too friendly for my liking, to say the least.

As he was taking my money, he said "You are very pretty lady". I blinked, and said "um, thank you" in what I thought was a neutral, polite tone. This somehow conveyed my deep love for him I suppose, because his next remark was "If you win this money I will make you my wife."

Hello??

I replied "Well, I'm already married." He replied "It doesn't matter." Ok, bye bye Habib. Time for me to go.

The really creepy, um, interesting part was that as I was walking out the door, he was suddenly riiiiiiiight behind me. Good thing for me was that I was with my friends, and the guy driving was right in front of the door waiting for me, and so I basically jumped into the back seat of the truck and said "floor it, willya?"

The people in my department still tease me about it now & then.

I wonder how I would have liked being part of his harem.

Thursday, June 16, 2005

Daylight savings time

I came home today and found a great big fat Fall Catalog monopolizing the space in my mailbox. I tried to order a few short sleeve shirts online the other day from one of my favorite places and one after another was on backorder. Even the stores in the mall have all of the summer items 50% off and they're all picked over.

This just won't do.


My kids still have a week left of school. Summer tutoring needs to be arranged. I haven't even started my summer hours at work.

Summer can't be over yet!

I have big plans for this summer. Getaways. Adventures, large and small. Baseball games and mini golf and a camping weekend and trips to the water park.

Looking at this catalog I feel like it's labor day weekend and the sand has already slipped through the hourglass. You know, that sinking feeling you have when you've gone back to school shopping and everything that shut down for the summer is ready to resume.

This catalog is SO going into the recycling bin.

Right after...

I just...

flip through it

a little bit.

Wednesday, June 15, 2005

Customer MisService, part 99

So today I called about my debit card problem because the stupid thing still would not Give. Me. Money.

(I waited in vain for a few days thinking a new PIN might be mailed to me, thinking that might be the issue. Nada.)

I called our 1-800 number and dealt with a charming woman (not) who tried to tell me that I was probably using the wrong PIN, but they didn't issue me a new pin. I repeated "I'm using the same pin that I used to use with my other card" more than once. "But we didn't give you a new pin."

WTF??

"No, I'm trying to use the old pin that I have always used with the card. Your clerks said it would still work with this new card and it doesn't."

She would reply that they didn't change the pin so I was probably typing the wrong PIN. I said very bluntly, "I know what my pin is and I have had the same pin for years so I am quite positive that I know how to type it. I tried more than once."

THEN she told me some nonsense about how her card wasn't really working yesterday, and I should try again, to which I replied "I just tried it now and it is not working". Then we had to dance through the "you might not have the right pin but we didn't give you a new one" smoke and mirrors again. Phone rage, all the way.

Finally a solution came to me and I said through gritted teeth "Would you please just reset my pin? I know that you can do that because that's what I ended up doing the LAST time I needed a new card."

She advised me that she was setting it to 1234 and that I should go and pick this option, that one, yada yada to reset it.

I went down to the ATM in our building and the guy with the money and the gun was there with the atm all opened up. "I'm going to be here a while". So help me. I think I could take him.

Walk away quietly, think about bunnies and woodchucks.

Three rabbits and a woodchuck

.... are in my backyard right now.

I know there's a joke in there somewhere, but I just can't quite find it.

Monday, June 13, 2005

Happy is

floating on your back, motionless, eyes closed, thinking about your favorite person, and opening your eyes and seeing a little sliver of the moon, white in the bright blue sky, and knowing that just maybe they are looking up at that same slice of moon and thinking of you too

Sunday, June 12, 2005

Not da Momma

I didn't exactly bat 1000 as a Mommy this weekend.I had to work most of the day Saturday and I missed my son's first home run, ever. I missed his first soccer goal too, once upon a time.

I used to say that if I missed my baby's first steps, or first words, or whatever, because I was at work, then their "first" one with me was what counted. But this just sucks.

I also managed to let my daughter get VERY sunburned shoulders in our neighbor's pool this afternoon. It was cloudy, dammit! I feel like a schmuck.

On the upside, I did manage to find a GOOD sitter for this summer. Good thing because we only have 8 days of school left, ya know? Really got down to the wire this year.

Annoying is...

getting to the register, with $200 of groceries that stupid teenage boys cram into bags, whipping out the replacement debit card that two clerks ASSURED me would not need a different PIN, and then having the card declined. Good thing I have more plastic.

Why does customer service suck so much in this country? Does anyone care about doing a job right? If I take a bag of crackers out of the bag you put the huge bottle of laundry detergent in, and snap at you about it getting crushed, why would you cram it in the bag with all my bread, and think that would make me happy?

Do I need to have a neon sign over my head warning you that I am unstable today because I'm FREAKING MELTING IN THIS DAMN HUMIDITY? Can't you just look at me and see it, boy??

I should be floating in a pool right now. Help!!!

Saturday, June 11, 2005

Funny

Free Katie

not that I would buy any of this, but he has gone completely out of his mind.

Run, Katie, run!

Thursday, June 09, 2005

Backdrop Nazi

I have an old friend (we've known each other since 5th grade so she turns 40 this year too bahahahaha) and she is a photographer. Every year she does portraits at the dress rehearsal for a dance recital.

I get to be the person who takes the half-filled out envelopes and deciphers them (only some of the dance numbers get group portraits but some girls are in more than one number and they want their portrait in one dress and their group shot in another and then siblings add a whole new wrinkle because mom wants a picture of them together.)

But my favorite part is that I get to be the backdrop Nazi. As in "I'm sorry, it's our policy that we don't allow parents to take pictures with their own cameras on our backdrops". You know, the parents who wait for the goup shot to be arranged and then step up RIGHT NEXT to the photographer.

I had at least six women TOTALLY get pissy with me. For some strange reason it amuses the hell out of me. I just point out the following:

  • the kids don't know who to look at
  • the flash can mess up our exposure which is metered based on the two professional lights our photographers set up.
  • this is how the photographers earn their living
  • it's not fair to the parents who DO pay for the professional portraits - this one really gets them. Yes, you ARE stealing, actually. Hey -do I walk into YOUR office and take stuff?

One lady went on and on about how someone else did it and this isn't fair. I pointed out the poster listing our policy which was taped to the table RIGHT in front of her. (She actually came back an hour later an apolgized to me)

The best one was someone who wanted to snap a group shot and she whined at me "but I did pay for some pictures already". Yeah, lady, whenever I buy a car I want another one free. Mmm hmm.

Ta dah

Well I had no problem getting my router and my OWN laptop working, just fine.

But of course my employer has given me a laptop with a wireless card that is NOT enabled. (If you're keeping score, that's the real point of this adventure... to "work" from my deck when I have to participate in something this Saturday and other days I'll be at home this summer with my kids.) Don't you know, I don't have administrator priviledges to my own PC so I can't enable it myself. However, one of my favorite people has hooked me up and hopefully all will be right in bit-land tomorrow.

Well, as right as it can be when it's a warm sunny day and you want to be in your cute neighbor's pool.

Wednesday, June 08, 2005

Here goes nothing

I bought a wireless router and other goodies and I'm going to try to set it all up. (Bahaha. So, in otherwords, park in front of my house and you'll get free service for a while.)

I love to dance

The concert was so great. I can't even explain.

Yes, I'm almost 40, but I still love standing five feet from the stage and dancing non-stop for 3 hours in a crowd of people who are dancing right along with me.

Highlight: the one and only slow song, New York State of Mind. The sax player was outstanding (but not as cute as the trumpet player, but that's another topic altogether.)

Tuesday, June 07, 2005

Is there a Hallmark card for this?

The last few days brought me a variety of adventures with my son.

On the one hand, he's definitely NOT a little boy anymore. He's somewhere in that nebulous "big kid" zone. He plays baseball this summer, not T-ball. This weekend he wore a cup for the first time. It was just one of those episodes that leaves me shaking my head.... first, Mr. C was showing him what it was, at the kitchen table. Um, well, no one was eating or anything but still, ewwwww. D was dropping his shorts within sight of the open front door and I stood there, announcing to no one in particular "We have neighbors...." Then D put the darn thing in upside down, which if you're a clueless girl like me is really funny because I never knew that one end is kinda pointy, but whatever, I was trying to leave the whole scene so that he wouldn't see that I was laughing at him.

He's definitely not all grown up yet though. Yesterday we had really horrible storms (there was a lot of damage to trees at my favorite park. Huge limbs just torn apart.)

My son is petrified of thunderstorms. The school secretary pretty much called and said "maybe you should come get him" because there were tornado warnings, and last year during a thunderstorm he wouldn't even walk out to the bus until his teacher held his hand and coaxed him out. She was really sweet about it, and when she was out on maternity leave she called one day so that the substitute would know that there was a storm on the way and that Dan would need reassurance.

Back to yesterday, he was much better with this storm. I had the tv on because of the warnings and he was looking at it and not very happy. So I told him to go watch cartoons in my room, which helped until the front started coming through and the power went out. Oopsie. He sat on my lap for a while, upset but not really crying.

About an hour later when the storm was done I left the room and when I came back he was lying on the floor. At first I thought he had actually passed out or something because he didn't answer me, but then I realized he was exhausted by the stress and had fallen asleep.

So, he went to bed for a while and that bit me on the backside later, because this was at 4:30, so at his actual bedtime he wanted NO part of sleeping. Just my luck, there were more storms, much smaller but he could see the lightning and he was crying in his room. He ended up in my bed with me which bumped Mr. C to his bed (he was none too pleased but he sleeps right through the alarm, so I figured we'd never get up on time today.) I was up at least until midnight just from that. Then he kicked me every hour or so, squirmed around, and snored this annoying little cute snore. Shut up! Go away! just might have crossed my mind.

So today I am extra tired, which is a bummer because I am going to see the Burners play tonight. Give them a listen, (Car Wash is pretty good to get a sample of this group)

On deck for this weekend - he's going to a birthday party with LAZER TAG.... I wonder if the grownups get to play too? I could use a nice laser around the office some days.

Sunday, June 05, 2005

I burn for you

Soleil,

what's the deal? I missed you terribly this winter. I pleaded with you to return. I was thrilled to see you again.

I spent those two hours with you willingly yesterday. I didn't realize you'd be so close to me at my son's baseball game. Oh, I noticed you right away. I knew I was in trouble the second I arrived, because you were already there. I couldn't escape you.

Now I am in PAIN. How could you do this to me? I can barely move my arms. They look like individual lobsters. My nose? Well, Rudolph would be proud. And explain to me how, if you're a million miles away, my knees burn but not the rest of my legs? Like, do my kneecaps stick out THAT much???

But your best achievement? Outlining the large blue stone pendant that I was wearing. We have a sense of humor, don't we?

Tomorrow JV will laugh at me at work. It's all your fault, Soleil.

Saturday, June 04, 2005

Miracle Boys

Miracle Boys is a blog by a Mom who attends the scrapbook workshops when I volunteer at the NICU.

Please visit her and give her some support - she's wonderful.

Friday, June 03, 2005

Lazy circles in the sky

I was talking to my boss last week and I looked out the window behind her and saw a pair of hawks circling and soaring. Now, you have to know that my boss is so cool, I said "Look, hawks" and she immediately stopped what we were talking about, just to look for minute. There was a little bird defending its nest and the hawks were dipping and soaring and trying to get to it.

Hawks always remind me of a wonderful afternoon I spent one summer.


I was seeing this guy Bill and one day we went off to a local state park. We found a shady spot under a tree, spread out a blanket, and just simply let the afternoon pass. For a couple of hours we didn't have a care in the world.

Bill had managed to find a quiet spot with a great view of some hills and trees and sky. It was perfect weather, nice and warm but a good breeze floating over us pretty often. We had lunch, listened to Journey on the car stereo, and talked about everything, and sometimes we just looked at the clouds together and said nothing. A few minutes would go by, one of us would say something, and the other would be laughing in no time. At one point when we were in the middle of a heart-to-heart on one topic I was in tears, and he wrapped me up in a giant hug until some of the sadness passed, and then made a remark that showed me he really did know exactly what I was talking about. I was pretty darn content to stay right there oh, I don't know, forever perhaps. Actually, I have to admit that I wish I was there right now. It was that perfect.

There is a Journey song that sums it all up. It's called Stay Awhile.

I'd do anything to hold you.
I'd go anywhere to touch you.
I'd do anything you want me to,
If you'll just stay with me awhile.
I'd sing any song your heart desires.
I would sing out loud of love's sweet fires.
Oo, I'd do all this and so much more.
If you'll just stay with me awhile.
Reach out your hand,
Oh, to me.
Oh, I'm fallin'
One minute more,
I'm fallin'
I'm fallin'
Oh, oh, fallin', fallin', fallin', fallin'
Won't you just stay with me awhile?

No one in the world sings like Steve Perry.

When we had to leave, the truck wouldn't start, because we'd been there for hours listening to the radio. He turned the key and all we heard was clicka clicka clicka. Ooopsie. I thought it was amusing. Wasn't mad at all. Bill was very apologetic but I said over and over "It's FINE, really!" because it was, and I was waiting for him to see that it really was a little bit funny. (He did, later.)

He jogged off to find someone to jump start the battery and while I waited I saw a group of hawks. One by one they went soaring by - it seemed like there was an assembly line sending out one after another from one group of trees. I watched them circle and glide, my own private viewing courtesy of Mother Nature. It was so beautiful.

Life is not always logical, and we did not end up married, darn it. But I've learned in my life to never say never, because for all I know someday when I'm 80 I'll be in Vegas with my sister and there he'll be. I will be sure to snap him up should I have the chance.

Goodnight Bill, I still love you.

Thursday, June 02, 2005

Play that funky music

There are many people who are happily child-free. I truly believe that in some cases this is absolutely what they want. However, sometimes I wonder if they have any idea what they're missing....

Today I left work (if you're wondering, I still don't have access to that document that I'm supposed to update) and went to see my kid play clarinet in the school's band concert.

Picture this if you will. The building used to be a small church (before the new, bigger church was put up a hundred years or so ago) and now they use it for a gym/auditorium. It's basically a big oven today. Three hundred wiggly sweaty kids. Most watching, about 25 playing in the band. Teachers, parents of the band members, and a smattering of grandparents.

There must be some molecular change that takes place in your brain when you become a parent. At least for me, because I honestly DID enjoy that band performance. All 15 minutes of it. We're talking Hot Cross Buns and exciting stuff like that, played at a labored pace. But damn if it wasn't cute to see 275 kids belting out "Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star" while their friends in the band played the song.

So you can keep doing whatever it is you child-free people do with your abundance of free time. Enjoy, really. As for me, I'm going to grab a quick lunch, and race out of work with minutes to spare and todo lists undone, to go and listen to my kid play the clarinet not quite in tune, every chance I get.

Wednesday, June 01, 2005

Isn't it Friday yet?

Why do short weeks seem longer? You know, when you don't go to work Monday. Then you spend all day Tuesday thinking it is Monday, and doing Monday's work along with Tuesday's.
By the time Wednesday comes, you barely know what day it is, but it certainly isn't Friday.

I basically lost an hour today on a document I am supposed to update but can't. I don't have the access. I CAN'T SEE IT IN THE SYSTEM. Yet, I am In Trouble for not updating it. Emails have gone out. A scold-y one to me, with a CC: to my boss and her boss. Beautiful. Lucky for me, yesterday I told her I can't see it, and that I am leaving voicemails for Document Guy. I left him one yesterday. So he left me one today. So I left him one and called a second time for good measure. Then he called me back and I did 8 searches (name, keyword, etc) to convince him that I Can Not See It In The System. Then he sent an email to HIS boss telling her I can not see the document. Do you see that this is why I love my job?