Wednesday, October 29, 2008

and then the little bear said, "someone is sleeping in my bed"

I am a nervous, judgemental, and at times overly cautious to the point of annoyance person. I may have told you this before. I am pretty sure I was not always this way, Jennie before kids had common sense about things while Jennie post kids can be a tad neurotic. Especially during infant season, the anxiety can reach epic proportions. I became a stay at home Mommy because some time during the 8th month of my first pregnancy somewhere in my brain a switch got flipped and all those eons of time that women had to keep an infant alive out in elements came flooding in and I no longer trusted that anyone, except for myself, to care for my kids. This includes my husband at times. I have been working on this lack of trust and have realized that my children may be my security blanket or something and that is why I don't easily let them go into the care of another human. And in the same breath I have gut instincts as a Mommy and while alarm bells don't go off when I leave my kids with their Dad or the grandparents and never the other Mommies I know, they have at times screamed at me when I have left them in the care of a babysitter. To the point that I simply am unable to enjoy myself childless and would rather sit home dealing with tantrums, poopy diapers, sticky hands, and other kid time fun instead of eating drenched in butter pan seared scallops and when not with child a glass or two of wine. Today is such a day.

I received in the mail about a month ago the dreaded jury summons. I actually think this would be kind of a cool thing to do, but as a stay at home mom the processes is a bit annoying. One only finds out if there even need to show up at the court house by calling no earlier than 5:30pm the evening before the scheduled date. The husband's place of employment has a rather useful benefit where we receive twenty days a year to use back-up babysitting in the event the primary caregiver is unable to well, provide childcare. So if I have a dentist appointment or something I can call up and they will provide a babysitter. I do have the option to use a daycare center as well. After receiving the jury summons I made a mental note to use the day care center because I figured it would be a long day and the kids would have way more fun playing with other kids and planned activities that with some freak with gold teeth and gang tattoos that lets them watch 7 hours of t.v. and talks on her cell phone non-stop. I have had some really great people show up to watch them and some downright weirdos. The weirdos create alarm bells and then I am completely incapable of focusing on anything other than the impending doom the children are in.  The good ones are never available when you request them because they all quit! 

Unfortunately the daycare did not work out because all of the centers in a twenty mile radius the company contracts through require that baby girl be at least 2.5 years old. So I had to go the freak route. After calling post 5:30 pm yesterday I found out I did not even need to go to jury duty, but also I was unable to cancel the child sitting and if I did I would be charged the 9 hours at $15 an hour. Me, not the company, me. I am not really in the mood for shelling out $135 today, thanks.

So I tell my self, "Self you have shit that needs to get done and now you can do it without the kids." Like going to the library in peace to look for books. So after dropping the boy off at preschool, no sense in him staying home all day to watch Nick Jr., that is what I do. Alarms were going off making it difficult to concentrate on reading. Why were alarm bells going off? Just little things this morning, like her not having her own car, but needing a ride. Asking if it is OK to leave a little early. Can she have some bread to make toast. If I ever need a babysitter and don't want to use the agency give her a call, just don't tell the agency and oh, she doesn't DO weekends. 

Since the alarm bells were going off I figured I would join the lunch time festivities with the children post preschool drop-off. Baby girl was pissed the entire time. Not really sure why, but was just downright pissed. I figured the best thing to do was to eat and then put the kids to bed, they couldn't really get into trouble sleeping. I had to return some make-up at Sephora and drop off the dry cleaning. Then I could come home and casually "work" on the computer until she leaves...early. I told her no problem leave as early as you need to. So after my little hour long errand running I returned home to find her sleeping in my bed!!!!!!!! MY EFFING BED! You know the one I sleep in with my husband. The family bed at five in the morning because that is when the kids wake up and join us. IN MY BED! Raise your hand if you find that odd! Because I sure as hell do. Not sleeping on my couch but in my bed. After hearing me back at home she wakes up to tell me that I have the most comfortable mattress in the world. Gee thanks Goldilocks. 

Seeing as how I was completely dumb stuck and really bad at confronting people I just said "uh, thanks?" with a raised eye-brow and stated she could leave when her ride got here because I am home for the rest of the day. Buh bye now.  The husband called while I was waiting for her to leave. I have yet to tell him because he is REALLY not afraid of confronting people. Not.at.all. Sometimes I think he likes it. I figured since this women is already in the house with lil' old pregnant me and my kids and she is acting more and more strange I will just hang out and let the husband deal with the agency later. 

This is why people have gut instincts and alarms! Normal people don't sleep in other people's bed that they just met this morning, and generally if invited to it is in some sort of guest bed, pull out couch, blow up matress on the floor, and NOT in the man and wife of the house's bed! Now if you'll excuse me I am going to change my sheets and wash the duvet, I feel itchy. 

Monday, October 27, 2008

Stickers

Ok so in the past couple weeks I have really seen the bumper sticker campaign heat up. The Obama Biden sticker is the first for my two year old "new" car. I had a 26.2 sticker for the last one. Plus the poor Kerry Edwards sticker. I never was one for completely plastering my car, but I have at times had other stickers, such as a very nice Calvin and Hobbes one on my first car. I lovingly picked that sticker out. After watching my kids, well mainly my daughter's obsession with stickers, I am amused at adults' little fetish with these things.

While I was sitting with the husband at Wahoo's Fish Taco (we have implemented date nights!) the other night and noticing the incredible amount of stickers around, I wondered allowed whether they had a decorator do it all or just let the employees come in before the store open and go at it. Each of these restaurants have pretty much the same type of sticker. Skateboarding, snowboarding, and surfing brand name stickers. Occasionally you will see an out of place sticker...we saw a local brewery sticker and a lone Apple sticker. Then I saw a bright pink one with black lettering and got really excited, because until I squinted, I thought it was a bumper sticker for Vintage Vinyl




Remember when you actually bought music inside of a store. This is one of those places. This is not unlike the store in the movie High Fidelity and many of the people in it are like Rob or really more extreme in their music snobbery. As a teenager in St. Louis this is where you went to buy music if you were looking for something obscure or for us teenagers the experience. Oh sure of course we all bought tapes or CDs at the mall but if you felt an absolute need for music and acting like a music snob you went to Vintage Vinyl. Yes, they actually had vinyl. I haven't been there in over five years and the last time I went it was about the same: lots of music, CDs, I can't remember tapes, plenty of vinyl, then some stickers to purchase in the back for the non-music shoppers but those needing to purchase something, anything! (That was where the Calvin and Hobbes sticker came from) and some very dirty carpet.  But it seemed as though the pink bumper stickers where almost a teenage prerequisite growing up in St. Louis. Many friends had them on their cars, or in class you would see them on a binder. While at college in the middle of Missouri I would see them about and would instantly know that person was from St. Louis as opposed to, ahem, Kansas City. This sticker I have displayed for your viewing pleasure has changed only slightly, for one there was no web address since there was no web really to speak of. Halfway through high school AOL was introduced and as we all remember charged by the minute, so my memories of high school are certainly NOT filled with images of chat rooms, web sites, and such. Also I don't remember the Granite City address on there, but it could have been. I always surprise myself when I see or smell something from St. Louis, I react happy. As a teenager it was my absolute goal to leave Missouri, but now there are things that I truly miss (gooey butter cake and toasted ravioli). While camping two summers ago the family and I ended up in Crested Butte which is a rather remote location in Colorado and I saw this bumper sticker. It made me reminisce to a very bored husband for a good hour. Funny how you can leave a place over a decade ago and a bumper sticker will take you back, completely flood your brain with dormant memories. But yet,  I can't even remember what the pink sticker was for at Wahoo's and that was only last week.

Monday, October 20, 2008

The joys of living in a swing state

After putting up with the never ending primary season, the DNC, the relentless commercials that I either ignore on a good day or yell at on a bad one, and not to mention the debates, SNL skits, and ceaseless punditry I am quite ready for this campaign season to be OVER. Because Colorado is very evenly divided and that we have nine electoral votes we are getting lots of attention ad  naseum. I am a political girl, I love to talk politics with people. I understand why people are completely charged up this year and are begging for change, whether Democrat or Republican. Lord knows that I certainly am. But there is a mean spirit to this election that I just cannot stomach any longer.  John McCain is no friend of mine and either is Sarah Palin. I think they have gone off the deep end. I am embarrassed for our nation when people compare Obama to a terrorist, either through the loose connection between him and Ayers. And yes for Pete's sake it is loose. Or the more asinine connection that his middle name is Hussein. Mine is Elizabeth, Her Royal Highness and I sip tea together at the palace regularly because of this shared name. Come on.

I feel ashamed when I hear people say that John McCain couldn't have been a very good solider because he was shot down and captured. This of course is complete lunacy and is extremely hurtful to military families with loved ones who have been killed, whether you agree with the war or not that is just plain stupid talk. He has a very inspiring story of strength. I just disagree with him and the Republicans on almost everything. 

But this morning when my husband came inside after dropping the boy off at preschool and told me that our Obama yard sign was gone, I was livid. I had seen on the news here in good 'ol swing state Colorado that people with an opposing view point to the majority view point in their neighborhoods were having their houses egged and spray painted almost nightly not to mention all the propaganda defaced. However, I live in a very mixed section of town and thought that no one would take issue with the yard sign. No one bothered the Kerry Edwards sign four years ago. I was wrong apparently. Seriously, you have issues if you are stealing political yard signs. (The McCain signs across the street were left un-touched.) It in no way changes my mind. In fact all it did was make me donate money to the already very large pot of gold that Obama has raised, get a new sign, two bumper stickers, plus signs for all the other Democrats running in my district. I was even lucky enough to meet my representative during this sign obtaining fiasco. My resolve was strengthened. 

And yet...

I see change on the horizon. For the first time in her 93 year old life my staunchly Republican grandma (who is so Republican that she and my grandfather were invited and went to Nixon's Inauguration) is voting for Obama. Hurry up November 4th, we are at mile 22 of the marathon I know we will make it but it sure does hurt right now. 

Friday, October 17, 2008

At least he knows his place!

Yesterday the husband came home with flowers and a card. Because it was Boss's  Day! No lie, the card was to appreciate my skills as the CEO of the Jennie household.  Such a smart man. 

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

big fat underwear...come back tomorrow Dad



Seeing as how I am knocked up for a third and final time (because Lord help the Jennie household if I have to do this again!) I thought I could now be considered an expert on the subject of massive weight gain primarily in the ass. One might think fat would be redistributed to the tummy region to accommodate the growing fetus. Not in my body. Oh sure my belly is quite large and really stretched out but the scary part is my tush. Mommy and me swim lessons are an exercise in humility at this point. (Thankfully I lose it all during the oh so fun nursing phase.)

Now ladies, we all have been in the maternity stores and gasped in simultaneous horror and bewilderment at the maternity thong. I may or may not have purchased one of these devices last go around to deal with the unsightly underwear line that accompanies white capri's. (The white pants, which do NOT look good on pregnant people, were deemed necessary for the Island Attire mandated heavy hors dourves/open bar for those not pregnant party at the husband's bosses house. At least the food was good.) Thankfully this time I can simply purchase a tree skirt as a dress for Kland's Holiday Party and may blissfully partake in...maternity underwear, and no one will ever know. 

For any men reading, maternity underwear are simply glorified granny pants. And like a scene out of Bridget Jone's diary are necessary because no one wants to look as though her bottom ate her underwear and quite comfy I must say. I purchased some of the unsightly things a couple weeks back, brought them home and gleefully showed them to the unamused husband. But they have gone missing!!!! Missing, still in their package and everything. I looked through the shopping bags they came home in, under the bed with the dust bunnies, in all of the laundry baskets. But nope they are gone. And while the husband may not have been so enamored with  the maternity drawers, where it is almost impossible to tell which side is the front and which side is the back, I don't think he is hiding them from me. Or at least he had better not be. You just don't steal a pregnant ladies' big enough to be a hammock for an eleven pound newborn underwear. I WANT the damn things. And seeing as how they were labeled "maternity" as opposed to "granny" they were slightly pricey.  So I am dealing with my ever growing bottom with boy shorts underwear trying their damnedest to take the place of the other misplaced underpinnings. 

I suppose I could just bite the bullet and go buy some more. I did notice the maternity stores are now selling maternity spanx. I wonder how well they work? 

Monday, October 13, 2008

Some more randomness

I was tagged by The Clothesline for seven random bits of info about moi. Since I have way more than seven I will go for it.

1.  I am currently doggysitting a pug. She is so adorable, sort of looks like an alien, and the kids will NOT leave her alone. The boy "read" her a story this morning and it was the cutest thing ever!

2. I find Weird Al Yankovich rather amusing. (spellchecker thinks Yankovich should be lungfish.  I find that pretty amusing too.)

3. Top Gun and Forest Gump are tied for first place in my favorite movie category. I can watch these two movies over and over and over and never get bored. (I do have more brain power than would be suggested by these selections, I simply choose to ignore it.)

4. I have a pet peeve with unmade beds and dishes in the sink. But don't look in my closets or cabinets because they are a mess. I don't like that either but because I can shut a door I can ignore them. A fun trick I play at my house. 

5. I have lived in six states. (Colorado is a repeated one.) Twelve US cities. Nineteen houses/apartments and one dorm room. Two different countries.  I have an incredible urge to move again. It is a weekly struggle to suppress. 

6.  I am learning a foreign language. (Trying out Rosetta Stone, I just started we'll see how it goes.)

7. I love bacon, I would eat it everyday if I knew it wouldn't kill me. 
     

OK Anna  I want some useless information!

Thursday, October 9, 2008

the dreaded preschool snack

I am sensitive. I am am the worst kind of sensitive, the kind of person that pretends to be callous and is VERY sarcastic in order to shield the sensitivity. I am getting better at the sensitivity, but definitely not the callousness nor the sarcasm. The sarcasm is pretty fun, I do have to admit. It is funny watching my kids because I can tell right now that the boy is most certainly sensitive, while baby girl is certainly not. He has a soft heart while she is well, um, mean. I am not kidding when I state my daughter is a cross between Mother Theresa and Chairman Mao. She is in it for herself, you could argue that is because she is two, but she was born this way. I am pretty sure she is going to rule the business world as an adult, while the boy...a poet perhaps? If poets are allowed to fly airplanes (B-2 bombers being the current plane of choice) then most likely a poet he shall be. Get my drift here? 

This sensitivity went into melt down proportions yesterday. All revolving around the bane of my existence...The Preschool Snack. (Really any kid outing snack for that matter.) This year at preschool it was decided that state regulations regarding snacks should be followed. They are that no homemade food shall be distributed to the wee children due to allergies (peanuts are the big one) and food born illnesses, i.e. e. coli and a big one for Colorado Hep. A. Apparently prepackaged spinach is a perfectly safe food as long as we forget about the e. coli in the spinach of a few years ago. But whatever. A list was sent out regarding what "healthy snacks" to bring. Healthy snacks being in quotations because I beg to differ on the healthiness of saltine crackers. 

So yesterday during "circle time" a fellow mommy who was in the boy's class volunteering went into a spiel about how fruit snacks were bad because they are full of sugar and sugar is bad and can make you too wiggly for school. Circle time follows snack time, and what was fed to the kids at snack time? Yep, fruit snacks...you know the chewy not made with fruit sugar bombs, not actual fruit. Apparently these were thoughtfully purchased in the Cars and Princess varieties to keep the kiddos happy. I completely agree with the mom who stated that fruit snack are too full of sugar and while it is debated if sugar makes kids hyper I can attest to sugar causing the wiggles. However, (please climb into the soapdish with me at this time I am about to splash) I have a HUGE problem with another mom volunteer voicing her opinions about snack to the entire class, especially after the kids just ate that snack, thus singling out the poor four year old that brought that snack. 

My son, who did not bring that snack, but did bring cheese sticks and raisins on Monday, misunderstood the whole fruit snack verbiage...being four and because when I do break down and by those delicious little chewy things every once in a while, I call them "chewies." (I really do like the things, seeing as they are oh so close to gummy bears.) When I picked the child up from school he stated in the car that raisins where not a good snack, he couldn't bring them because they are full of sugar and make you wiggly. I tried to figure out what he was talking about and then got most of it out. All except the term fruit snacks. He just kept saying raisins...which literally is a fruit snack. He was crying because he thought he had done something wrong and was just not buying my argument that raisins are an acceptable snack (they are on the "list") and they have lots of potassium, fiber and antioxidants. All of this was lost on him of course and he was beside himself.

We have had these kind of meltdowns before. Last summer during t-ball the boy lost it when it was our turn to bring snack and someone else did as well by mistake. Being  non confrontational I let the other family dole out the snack. The boy apparently had *really* been looking to being a gracious giver of food and a large crying jag ensued. 

After getting no-where with four year old I called the school to find out what exactly had happened. I am generally not a person who calls the school but he was really upset and I had to know if someone really did object to the raisins. Because there some people who object to fruit because of the sugar in it, and I disagree with that opinion. So after being the second parent in line with the phone call I learned that subject in question was not raisins but fruit snacks and the poor child who had handed them out and her mom were quite upset as well. Why? Because a boundary had been crossed. I am all for teachers teaching about healthy eating choices while not putting down a four year's snack choice (or really her mom's) but not a parent volunteer giving opinions. (While I agree with that opinion it was inappropriate to discuss with the class of preschoolers, and instead the newly published "list" should have sufficed for the mom unless there was a continuation of unhealthy snack bringing in and then I feel it is the teacher's place to speak with the mom or the director's).

After telling the boy about the mix up and explained to him that Girl in Class X did nothing wrong as well, perhaps she had been good the day before and wanted to share her special snack with the class he seemed to understand. But this morning he was rather insistent that I stay with him for a few moments at the start of class. And poor Girl Child X called in sick. 

Oy vey! The drama of childhood sensitivities and suburban preschool. 

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Nothing more than judgemental observations.

While picking up pizza for the family this evening at a carryout pizza chain I noticed that some of the employees had band-aids on their chins. At first I thought nothing of it, but while standing around waiting for the pizza (and wings) I had nothing else to do but to dwell on it. Herpes? Massive zits ready to explode at a moments notice right into the melted cheese so that no one would notice. (hungry anyone?) A new trend for pizza employees? A shout out to their hommies in juvie? Finally after staring for five minutes I caught a glimpse of silver. They were covering up their unsightly right below the bottom lip stud. You know because when you walk into a to-go pizza hole in the wall you expect piercing-less teenagers. What you do expect is greasy hair behind a dirty hat completely lacking the hair net, nose picking, exploding zits, dirty finger nails, and untucked shirts. But heaven forbid a piercing. That is just too much for the general pizza eating public to take. 

It was like entering another of my favorite public spaces. The Gas Station. Now granted I pay with debit and generally have no need to actually unstrap the children from their restraints to enjoy the freak show. But occasionally I feel like walking on the wild side and do in fact venture in. Vegas was WAY more interesting than here since "gaming" is allowed inside gas stations, as is smoking which just seems, well, at odds with the flammable nature of gas, but never the less occurred. Also meth junkies with completely rotten teeth are the employee of choice. Here in Colorado things are a bit tamer than that, but have you been inside a gas station lately? Everyone needs to put this substance into their car and yet I NEVER see anyone resembling a normal person inside a gas station. Ever. It honestly is like walking into dirty backwoods toothlessville, where one showers annually. And aquanet is the hair product of choice. Oh sure I am being judgemental but its just something I have noticed and find it rather amusing. 


Thursday, October 2, 2008

damn octopus

It came back the other day. Seriously will someone please tell me why that many people are interested in an octopus?? Is it a forward? A commercial on t.v. A bad dream? People from all over the globe instantaneously decide hey let's google octopus? Very odd.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

A1C Manny


Well he did it. He managed to get yelled at for six weeks, shoot an M-16, get tear gassed, perfected hospital corners, and salute my one time officer mom. The manny crossed into the blue. He even graduated with honors. Now he is off in California learning Mandarin. We were all shocked, having prepared ourselves for Arabic or Farsi and tours of Baghdad, but instead he will be able to order us some killer dishes in Chinatown when we visit him in San Francisco. While at Sea World he even re-gained his Manny skills and stated, "I think she is choking." And I promptly Heimliched my daughter who was indeed choking on a strawberry. 

Being back on a base was certainly bittersweet for me. You never realize how much you can miss a lifestyle (and a husband in uniform) until it is gone. And while the husband would be most likely a Master Sargent drinking coffee and "managing" the airmen from 7-4 every weekday, I couldn't ask him to go back. Even though a huge non-realistic piece of me wanted to. I know full well he would also have done a tour in Korea and Baghdad by now too. He found the experience to be nostalgia inducing as well, he couldn't believe how much he has done in his life since he completed basic training slightly over twelve years ago. When I think about it I am impressed too. (Just don't tell him, he has an ego, you know.)

On the plane ride back, when I should have been watching Mr. Hottie Matt Damon in the the Bourne Identity on the fancy schmancy phone I instead thought about what I want to do with my life now that even the manny is employed. With a damn cool job to boot. Because I know this tiny phase in my life with pass all to quickly and no one will need their butts wiped anymore. I had better start preparing now. So starting this next month I am. I am keeping it between the husband and myself for now, until I get a better handle on the idea. It's kind of large. But if you look back at a previous post where I was ranting about what I love to do...it fits them perfectly. I am starting to feel at peace, and just the thought of me working towards something makes me appreciate all the silly moments with the kids even more.