Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Yeah, you may not want to read this.

Warning - if your 8th Grade health class squicked you out, you may not want to read this.  No hard feelings.

Still with me?  OK.  You can still bail at any time.

Given my advanced age and for other reasons too convoluted to go into, I went off the birth control pill earlier this year.  I'm actually tempted to go back on it - but the reason I mention this is that with the pill, I never had to count days on a calendar or track my period or anything - a little plastic packet did the work for me.  God, I loved it.  Plus, the periods you have on the pill are just nothing - a little blip on the radar.  Without chemical intervention, it's a whole different story.

Now, I'm back to where I was in middle school and high school, counting to twenty-eight every month, marking my calendar, gutting it out for the full five icky days instead of two easy days of "eh".  And that is sooooo not my style.  The good news is, I am like clockwork, friends.   I would make an OB-GYN do backflips.  So thankfully, there's not a lot of surprises, except that I have no short term memory and I'm inexplicably surprised monthly.  Which this month, meant yesterday (look, I warned you).  Surprise!!!   But not really.

So I was contemplating all of this on my ride home from work tonight, and it occurred to me that I have been having periods for exactly 25 years.

Aaaand.... here's where you close your browser.

Or if you're still with me - I got my first period on December 1, 1986.  

Twenty-five years ago tomorrow.
That means I've had roughly 300 periods.  And that is really just kind of insane.    

I have no idea where I was going with this.

But really, 300 of anything... that's impressive, no?

I mean, I could regale you with the stories of one awkward time in 6th Grade when I had to tie a jacket around my waist for part of the school day, or about the time in college after I moved into the sorority house and my cycle shifted mid-cycle into synch with EVERY OTHER PERSON IN THE HOUSE.  Now, that's fucked up.  Seriously.   We always joked about flying a skull and crossbones flag out front one week out of the month.

I could tell you about the SexEd class in middle school where the girls all kept pressing the teacher on where the menstrual fluid *came from*.  We understood it was uterine lining, but how did it build up, and from WHERE?  I'm not sure I understand even today.  But it freaked us out.

I could tell you about the time in High School when the dozen terrified women in my AP English class who had just read The Bell Jar were trying to figure out why Esther's friend started bleeding uncontrollably after having sex.

Because, you really can't talk about menarche without bringing sex into the equation.  Well, I mean, you can - but I've gotten this far.

But I'm not Eve Ensler.  This is not The Vagina Monologues, and to be fair, you know way more about me than you ever bargained for.

Oh, but there's plenty more where that came from.

This is totally going into my one-woman show.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Overlooking?

So, I firmly believe that we all have super powers - we just have to be willing to understand that for the most part, they're not really cool or useful.  I can't see through steel beams, or leap tall buildings in a single bound.  I don't have x-ray vision, and I never got bitten by a radioactive spider, to my knowledge.

Now, I've said before that if I could pick my super power, I'd be omnilingual.  But the League of Awesome has never sent me a survey allowing me to check a box, send a donation and be done with it.

So, I'm going to take the super power I have and use it.

Like I said, we all have them - they're just not what you'd call... all that practical.

Mine is that I can find four-leaf clovers like a woman possessed.

Yeah, I know - you're green with envy.  Clover green. Who wouldn't be?

I don't know how I find them - I think I have what, since I'm in a whimsical mood, we're going to call "four-sight" - that allows me to scan a patch of clover and pick out the ones that don't belong.

Last week, in a patch near our office, I found three.  And a five-leafer, too.   Now, I can't say it's made me lucky.  It hasn't.

I need to channel my four-sight into something bigger and more badass.

Like - cracking codes, or panning for gold, or mating socks.

If you're omnilingual and want to trade, call me.  I'll throw in a five-leafer and some pepper jelly.

ae

Monday, November 28, 2011

The Pipe Man Cometh... and Goeth.

So, thankfully, the plumber came, saw, conquered and left.  And the sink now drains.

I'd love to give him a few hours to work on my bathroom sink, but it drains.  It's just slow.

Anyway - he was done by 9:30, but since I took a day off, that left me with some serious time on my hands.

So here's what I did.

- Put the lights up around the porch

- Paid some bills

- Ordered a few Christmas presents

- Went to Big Lots to look at a wreath

- Met Matt for lunch

- Ate Pho at Koi - it was good.

- Went to Michael's to look at a wreath; bought one



Pretty sure Matt's going to hate it, but I love it.


- Stopped at Walgreens to look at battery operated lights - they didn't have them

- Stopped at Kroger to look at battery operated lights - they had them

- Also bought a turkey and turkey accoutrements at Kroger

- Came home and threw turkey in oven

I'm ready for my close-up, Mr. DeMille!





- Put up wreath

- Fed dog

- Waiting for Matt to come home

- Will start cooking dinner (pasta) shortly, as turkey will not be ready for tonight


So that was a day.  I'm going to Zumba tonight, and can you believe this?  They're expecting snow.  In NOVEMBER.  I mean, yes - the 28th of November, but still.  Yikes.

I haven't bathed today, and in fact, I didn't bathe yesterday (we left Atlanta hastily).  I may hit the showers pre-Zumba, because I can.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Like a turkey - stuffed.

We just got back from Atlanta.  It was terrific.  

Now, I get to deal with the sink, and that's not so terrific.

The kitchen sink died early last week.  I tried to unclog it with all the usual methods and finally realized, after taking it apart that the clog is coming from outside the house.  Yeah.  Great.

I have a plumber coming in the morning.  We'll see.  I've got some money on the credit card, hopefully enough to pay for whatever ends up happening.  

I kind of want to pop on the scale and see what the damage is.  And after that, I need to go pick up dinner.  Because I can't cook without a sink, now can I?

After that, it's time to figure out Christmas.  Think I'll wait on those decisions til I know how much I've sunk into the sink.

It's the most wonderful time of the year.

Really.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Why I'm Thankful

Well, it's that time of year again.  How is that possible?  I think we just recovered from last year.

I love Thanksgiving.  It's free from gift-giving, religious guilt and loaded with carbs and fat.  What's not to love?

So, I'll take a moment to flex my gratitude muscle and give a shout out to:

- Drs. Stasko and Iorizzo.  Thanks for curing my hair cancer.  The piece of scalp is nothing, and the peace of mind is everything. 

- Weight Watchers - both the program and the lovely people who run and attend our Wednesday meetings.  I couldn't have gotten this far without you - and even when I give up on the program, it never and you never give up on me.

- How I Met Your Mother.  Sometimes, you just need a little 30 minute break.  And though you've had better seasons, I appreciate the diversion you create.

- Social Media.  I appreciate you for allowing me to express myself.  Even if I don't have anything worth saying.

- JACK-FM.  You gave me the chance to try something I was born to do.  And you were all really nice, and it was honestly just a great experience.  Thank you. 

- Effexor-XR.  I'm pretty sure that Debbie Boone was singing your praises in the song, "You Light Up My Life".  And even if she wasn't, she should have been. Thanks for keeping my keel even, and my fists mostly unclenched.

- Zumba with Carrie.  You are the only thing that could tear me away from my weekly HIMYM fix (see above).  So praise Hulu.  I need this class like Oreos need cold milk.  I love the nice people that join in the fun, and I need to find more classes like this.

- Gainful, fulfilling employment.  Even when it's bad, it's good.  And it's rarely bad.

- My friends. Because I love them.  Because they love me.  Because we bring the party with us.

- My family.  They make me crazy sometimes, but they made me who I am.  And I love them.

- Lola.  She smells bad, she sheds, she's an escape artist, she has terrible manners, and I love her to pieces. And come January, we'll have had 13 lucky years together.

- Matt.  Without whom, none of the above would matter.  Thanks for taking this journey with me and making it more fun.  We'll mark up the Sky Mall together for years to come.


Sunday, November 20, 2011

A Jump on Black Friday

Dear Santa,

Times being what they are, it's not even Thanksgiving yet, but I thought I'd make life easy on you and give you a few ideas for me, in re: Christmas.

I've been reasonably nice this year - and naughty when applicable.  I don't deserve a lot, but a few little trifles and gewgaws are never inappropriate.

So I'll give you a few to choose from:

- A small umbrella, and I mean tiny.  Like this.  Available at Kohl's, Target, WalMart, etc.  I do love a jaunty print or cheery color.

- Kitchen shears.  Bed Bath and Beyond has them.  All kinds.  And cheap.  There's a coupon on the fridge if you need it.

- I am desperate for new bras.  I mean, it's getting ugly.  I don't expect you to know how to handle that.  Maybe Mrs. Claus can help you.  She'd probably have me go to Rebecca Vaughn or Soma or something.

- I always love new sleepwear, and Kohl's has some pretty things.  I would probably need an XL in whatever you like.  I kind of dig the Little House on the Prairie look, but if you think my husband would prefer something a little more ooh la la, I'll be grateful for whatever I get.

- Exercise stuff.  New Year, New Fitness Goals - I wouldn't say no to a good sports bra, or a small, sturdy MP3 player of some kind.   Or some good socks.

- A subscription to Southern Living.  Because I like to pretend that I'm going to use their ideas when I refurb my imaginary coastal bungalow.

- A gift certificate to The Container Store.  I don't normally like the delayed gratification of gift cards, but I think we both know organizing isn't my strong suit.

- A frilly apron.  They sell them at places like Hot Pink, you know  - next to The Puffy Muffin.  Honestly, Santa, was there ever a more unfortunate pairing of store names?  Still a full apron in a fun floral print...would be killer.

-  Who wouldn't want this?  Someone without my incredibly dry, cracked hands - that's who.

- If you wanted to buy me a new backpack for work - I love anything by the folks at MadPax.  Orange, green, or any of the "faux dino" are best.  But the pink one has a certain je ne sais quoi.


- I've been eyeballing the new Mindy Kaling book, but it's tough now that I have a Kindle.  If you wanted me to have a Kindle Fire with a copy of that on it- I wouldn't say no.  Kidding - that's pretty low on the list.

- Anything from IKEA - a Blurg or a Kvorstad or a Bovlig.  In red.

- To steal from my friend's daughter Evie, whose mom posted her Santa letter on FB...Root beer.  Diet for me.  Barq's is good.

For you, I've leave rum balls, or sausage balls.  Or both.

I don't deserve all of this, or even half.  But in your infinite wisdom, I know you'll know what to do.

Sincerely,

ae



Saturday, November 19, 2011

That's funny.

So, yesterday, I had the opportunity to participate in a focus group at work, for an initiative to improve employee morale.  We started with an excercise where we had to tell 2 people in the room that we appreciated them for something.  We had to write it down, read it outloud and then hand the card to the person.

I got appreciated by  4 people in the room.  That makes me feel pretty popular.  I was appreciated for my customer focus, for my friendliness, and for my pepper jelly - but they all mentioned my sense of humor.  And that brings me to this.

I'm never going to be the serious one.  Ever.

Much like in school, I never got cast as the ingenue, the lead.  I'm a character actress.

So as much as I'd like to think I'm Nellie Forbush, I'm really Bloody Mary.

When I'm not busy chewing betel nuts, I am cracking jokes.



In fact, I had dinner with Jim and James last night and Jim brought his friend Mark.  Mark was really friendly, bright, cute and a pleasure to meet.  This morning, Jim texted me that Mark thinks I'm "funny as hell" and enjoyed getting to know me.

So, there's that.  I guess it's OK.  Because I know who I am, and what I bring to the table.

But you have to admit "I'm In Love With a Wonderful Guy" is a better song than "Happy Talk".  It's sad, but true.

Tonight I'm going to a party - bringing chess pies and a sense of humor.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Trees, brushes... the usual.

Went to Paint Along Nashville tonight with the regulars - Matisse, Degas and Me.

First, a quick bite at Cinco de Mayo, where I had one margarita, which was one too many.

But we can't blame the outcome on the booze, now can we?

The finished products from L-R: Allison, James, Natae. 
The instructor gave him a brush to pose with.

Nice work.

I would totally take a non-fatal bullet for this guy.  Can you say that about your boss?

Non-fatal bullet for this lady too.  Love her!

No, still a little crooked.

I feel like busting out with "That's What Friends are For".  Keep smiling, keep shining...

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Star Craving Mad

So, I'm feeling a little frustrated.  We're into our darkest time of the year here, and the lack of daylight makes me a little crazy.

Add to that, I feel like I'm being spread a little thin, and I'm also feeling fat.  So that's a nice dichotomy.  Ahahaha.

Anyhoo, I was perusing the old Facebook the other night, and this gal I used to work with was going on about keeping the Christ in Christmas, and how she doesn't say "Happy Holidays".

I'm thinking about a counterpointy kind of post saying that I grew up with a tree and menorah and I recognize that there's more than one holiday this season (Thanksgiving, New Years and Festivus are all holidays, right?).  And so I'll be hoping my friends enjoy whatever they celebrate, whenever they celebrate it, and I'll wish them a hearty "Season's Greetings".

But, I might lose a few friends, start a flame war, and so on.

So maybe I'll leave it be.

Or not.

Well, there you have it.

Tomorrow night James, Natae and I are going painting again.  Surely, photos will follow.

I also have to weigh in after some serious non-compliance, and I'm afraid.  Very afraid.

Oh well.

Meanwhile, the big work Thanksgiving is coming Thursday, and I'm taking cheese grits.  So excited.  So very excited.

So yeah.  Most wonderful time of the year.  Blah, blah.

Off to take a laxative and plan some light clothes to wear to work tomorrow.

Maybe that's a joke, maybe not.

ae

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Raking it in...

I am pretty sure that, at least for the moment, I am not going to get a tattoo. Instead, I bought myself a ring - one that holds a marble in it - and I can change out the marble for a different one whenever I choose.

Isn't this cute?  No actual cats were blinded in the making of this ring.

I should have used that money to buy a winter coat, but the fact is, I wanted something to look at and remember this year by.


And while a tattoo would have done the trick, it's permanent, and at the moment, I'm feeling a little more...fleeting.

It is what it is.

I raked the front yard this morning.  I love living in an older neighborhood, but I hate the trees.  Fucking trees.  Leaves all clogging up my gutter and whatnot.

At the moment, my next move is to shower off the leaf dust and head out for groceries.  I also need to get my old winter coats out and rehab them.  I have a peacoat that isn't too bad, and if I were to put new buttons on it, it would look better.  The barn jacket, frankly, is what it is...

Next year, once I've lost the bulk of my bulk (and paid off some debt, etc.) - then I can go coat shopping.

As for today, I have work to do.

The good news is, I've already done a lot.  


Saturday, November 5, 2011

The Up Late Update

So, I managed to get my bathroom and bedroom into great shape.  I hit up the JCP and walked away with nada.  I hit up the Kohl's and found three pair of jeans - well, technically, one of the three is a pair of denim trousers - but they're awesome.  Extra dark wash, flattering...I used my gift card, spent $26 extra and everyone was happy.

Lola got her dog food but no bath.

I have 2 pages left on my work stuff.    I washed a metric fuckton of laundry.

I had a little peppermint froyo from the Pinkberry.

Matt is home, he's about to go to bed.

And since I didn't have a nap today, that looks like a great idea.

Sweet dreams are made of this.

ae

Racing, racing, racing with the clock

Today I am going to have to balance the want to, the need to, and the have to.

Want to:

Go shopping - I have a Kohls gift card and a Bed, Bath and Beyond gift card - both of which are burning holes in my purse.  Plus... JC Penney is having a mega sale and I want a sweater or two.
Take a nap.  Stayed up late last night (more on that in a second), and it's 7:17 and I'm awake.  Six hours does not a good night's sleep make.


Need to:

Give Lola a bath, get laundry done and put away, get ready for the next week, clean my scummy bathroom and our overgrown bedroom.  Get some shit together and take it to Goodwill.  Figure out the grocery situation.


Have to:

Complete ten pages of completely tedious, repetitive manual data stripping for work.  Due to our system's glitch, we now have some poor soul receiving 500 e mails.  That has to stop, and since the hot fix is really more of a tepid fix - I'm the girl with the golden keystroke.  I hate it, but I have to do it.  And I stayed up late last night, but didn't even make a dent. Also, I cannot let it get to dinnertime tonight without getting kibble. Lola is completely out.  She ate some kibble dust this AM for sure.  I am thinking I might try something our new dogsitter recommended.

And, speaking of have to.  Matt's out of town until this evening, so I have until  - let's say 7PM to balance these things effectively.

Now, since both Kohls and JCP open really early, I could head there in the now-ish timeframe, get the benefit of the Doorbuster Savings at JCP ($14.99 for a sweater - uh, yeah, I'll take 2).   But conventional wisdom would say get some work done first and then reward yourself with the shopping.

Less conventional wisdom would say, get the shopping done, come home, bust out 2 hours at the computer, another two in housework and then take a nap.

I love less conventional wisdom...

ae

PS - Notice how exercise and healthy eating didn't make my list?  Yeah - that's what Sunday is for.

PPS - Just checked their websites - looks like I need to delay shopping for a few hours.  So... housework it is.  See, isn't it nice how flexible I am?

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Everyone deserves a chance to fly...


It’s hard to say just when my self-esteem crashed and burned – but I’d say around 4th grade.

The thing is, I’ve never had that feeling of “I’m not smart enough”.  Well, I mean – from time to time, but intellectually, I’ve never felt vastly inferior. 

Now, I’ve felt "not pretty enough" a million times in my life.

It’s kind of sick, actually.

I catch myself daily looking around to make sure I 'm not the fattest/ugliest/plainest looking person in the room.  Even when it doesn't matter.  Especially when it doesn't matter.

And I tell you this all because of the photo I’m about to post:

There are so many inappropriate caption options.


Here is a picture of me and two people I’m crazy about.  On my left, James.  On my right, Jim.  This is us after seeing Wicked at the Tennessee Performing Arts Center.

And I dumped it onto the computer last night and was getting ready to throw it on Facebook when a thought popped clearly into my head:
 

“I think I’m attractive enough to be seen with these two.”

No thoughts about how lucky I am to have nice friends, or what a nice evening we had, or that I like James’ pocket square, or that Jim was thoughtful to organize this outing, or any of that.

Just that I was worthy of spending time with them because of my physical appearance.

Now, to be honest, these guys probably wouldn’t give a damn if I showed up in a flower sack with coffee cans for shoes.  They apparently spend time with me because… I don’t know – I’m funny, or kind, or generous or maybe I amuse them?  I don’t know.

But it’s not about my makeup or hair.

That said, it was a great evening.  We had dinner, we saw a show.  We laughed, we got a stranger to take a picture and then we came home.

I’ve got to get over whatever it is that makes me feel unworthy. 

Also, I’ve been having this really strange urge to get a tattoo.

Which… that’s a bad idea, right? 

Something small – no bigger than a nickel.

Still.  Bad idea, I know, right?

Hmm.