Monday, March 30, 2009

Mondays Blow

I’d like to think I’m a pretty put together gal – you know, the one who has it all. A good job, great husband, amazing kids, clean house, exciting social life. (BWAHA! Ok, those last two are funny.) But really, while my family rocks, my organizational and time management skills can be lacking, and even though I might fool someone out there, I’m not very suave about juggling everything.

This morning, my work phone rings. It’s an outside caller, so I ignore it. (Don’t judge me! You know that’s why they invented voice mail.)

If it’s a client, they’ll leave me a message and I can mentally prepare myself before I call them back, I think. If it’s anyone else, they’ll either leave me a message or call my cell phone.

My cell phone rings. I pick it up. “Hi Monica, it’s SchoolSecretary from the elementary school. Is Bumblebee ill today?”

“Um, n-n-no…” I stammer, confused. My brain does a (thankfully silent) What’s she talking about, Willis?

Bumblebee was supposed to have today off because of a Kindergarten round-up meeting for next year’s incoming class. “Isn’t she supposed to not have school today?” I say, hoping that SchoolSecretary is who messed this one up, but knowing that the odds were against it.

“No. That’s Wednesday.” SchoolSecretary says.

Oh SHIT. Bumblebee is playing happily at the babysitter’s. I’m sitting at my desk 40 minutes away.

So I run her up to the school. Today is her day to bring snacks. At least I'd already purchased the chemical miracle that is crackers and cheese dip, but Bumblebee is worried that we won’t get there in time for snack. Which I guess is at 10:15 a.m. What the heck? They eat lunch at 11:30… who needs a snack an hour before lunch? I guess if you have to control a room of eighteen 5 and 6 year olds, you feed them often to keep them from attacking you.

I tell Bumblebee that we’re hurrying as fast as we can. And it’s true – I’m doing 70 in a 55 MPH zone. She eyes the odometer and tells me, “that thingy can point to a higher number, MOM.” Indeed. But I haven’t had a speeding ticket in 10 years. I don’t need one now (knock on wood.)

Of course the wind is blowing a thousand miles per hour so that when I open the car door in front of the school, some papers that I don’t know if I need or not fly out and I have to scramble around the parking lot to retrieve them. One is lost forever. I hope it’s not the deed to my house or something important. My back is sore, so that chasing and scrambling is making me utter swear words that I hope nobody can hear. Thank God the kids are out for recess on the other side of the building. I have to grip Bumblebee’s hand while holding on to her snack pail and backpack in the windstorm. I swear that wind could’ve picked my 35 pound peanut up and blown her a county away!

Sigh. So I drop her off and return to work looking disheveled and stressed out. Nothing like wasting an hour and a half because I didn’t get the schedule right.

Story of my life.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Spring Break

I've been a bad blogger, but I have a great excuse! Took the fam to Kansas City for spring break. We had a great time. Here's a slideshow:

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

The World According to Bumblebee

Bumblebee and I have our best conversations in the car. There's nothing to distract us, and for some reason, she is extremely talkative while we're in a moving vehicle. Even more so than when we're at home.

The other day, we were going to the store and I called my sister-in-law to wish her a happy birthday. My brother and sis-in-law are expecting their first baby in June. Bumblebee heard me ask G to send pictures of her baby belly, so we started talking about the new baby.

"Mama, is Aunt G having a boy or a girl?"

"We think it's a boy, sweetie."*

In the rear-view mirror, I saw Bumblebee pout. "Everyone has boys," she huffed.

"Well, not everyone... Uncle B and Aunt N have two girls, remember? Uncle J and Aunt N also have a baby girl..."

She ignored my explanation, and declared, "Mom, it's not fair. There are more boys in the world than girls."

Since her Kindergarten class is made up of 6 girls and 14 boys, I can see where she'd get this thought.

After a few seconds of rare silence, Bumblebee sighed and concluded, "Well. I guess I have to like boys since I'm going to marry one someday."

*I never say for certain anymore. Not since an ultrasound tech told me that my second born was a baby girl. Little "Brooke Cecile" was born "The Boy."

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

File This One Under "Incredibly Dumb Ideas"

I gave up chocolate for Lent. You know, the smooth, sweet, sometimes gooey nectar of the gods? Yep. Gave that up. Right in the middle of Easter candy season.

Why yes, I am completely insane and moronic. Thanks for asking. That picture is making my mouth completely water right now.

Today is my 14th day without it. I really haven't had a single ounce of chocolate - for real. For the first time in my life, I haven't cheated on a Lenten promise. I've had no lattes (because, really, without chocolate, you may as well drink coffee black), no candy bars (except for that one salted nut roll that I had last week before recommitting to Weight Watchers), no cookies, cake, etc.

I've hidden the jar of Nutella. It's keeping company with the bag of chocolates (Dove! Dark!!) that webgal got me for my birthday.

I'm dying for just a taste, just one little bite to let it melt slowly on my tongue... But no! I must prove to myself that I can do this. At first, I was like "Hey, it's only 40 days, I can do this, right?" And then I did the math. Lent is actually forty-seven days long.

Which means that I have 33 days left. I am only 1/3 rd of my way through this thing.

Sigh. These carrot sticks that I'm eating aren't helping one bit.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

You Know How Scrabble Can Take Forever?

The game started out innocently enough:

But it went on and on and ON.

I let The Husband play this gem of a word:

But only because the triple word score beneath it was open and I could make it plural...

Thursday, March 5, 2009

On a Happier Note...

Yesterday's post was a bit of a downer. Thanks for your kind comments, though. I'm much happier today. Funny how sadness can come and go like the wind...

I was checking out my favorite blogs this morning and came across this one that cracked me up. Go check it out - it's funny! A post devoted to the rear end, the butt, the derriere. And, there's a contest! It's ok, you can do it now. I'll wait. But don't forget to come back here.

Yesterday's post at A Whole Lot of Nothing has a contest. To be eligible to win, you have to write a couplet about your ass. I don't really know what a 'couplet' is, so I just wrote a cheesy poem with several two liners... Here's mine:

I like to complain about the size of my ass
‘Cause it really is getting obscene.

But I have to admit that the weight of its mass
Can be blamed on no one but me.

Though I torture and sweat and constantly work out
To make that thing firm and delicious,

It’s my diet, I know, with out any doubt
That needs to be far more nutritious.

It bulges, it shakes, it’s a lumpy hot mess
That causes me daily chagrin.

When I was younger, I’d never have guessed
That I’d resemble a damn bowling pin.

But at the end of the day, when I’m sitting to rest,
There’s padding to soothe me for sure.

Though my ass may be ample, I won’t get distressed.
Until I can’t fit through the door.

Ok, now you guys go write one about your tushies. I'll read about them later. As for me, I'm getting back to work. I've been slacking off all morning, and it's going to bite me in the... well, you know where.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009


Many of you know that I had a stillbirth almost 8 years ago. It was one of the hardest things I’ve had to go through, but people have had to endure worse and life’s been good to me in many ways, so I don’t like to let the loss define me. I had a very rough time when it happened, but life healed me. The Husband and my older kids helped me get past that initial pain, and then it wasn’t so hard to go through the motions. Eventually I went on to have Bumblebee and after she came around I was too busy to dwell much upon the loss of Joseph.

This has been a tough week, though.

On Sunday, the show Extreme Home Makeover was building a house for a woman who photographs families with their gravely ill or deceased babies. I had to control myself while I watched that show, because Hollywood and Bumblebee were watching it with me, but it really struck a chord in my heart. I seriously felt a pain in my chest. The show explained this woman’s work – she photographs people with their babies, while they are gravely ill and after they’ve passed away. One of the women interviewed said, “Being able to look at those pictures reminds me that our baby was real.”

Unless you’ve gone through something like that, you might find the thought of holding or photographing a deceased baby morbid. For us, holding Joseph after he died was natural and in its own way, beautiful. We asked for photographs with him and the nurse who took them looked so visibly horrified that I wasn’t surprised to find that her photos barely show the baby at all. But the hospital staff put him in a white dressing gown and photographed him for us. They also took footprints of him. Tiny little footprints. Someday I might get a tattoo of them. I’m still deciding.

In the tv show I was watching on Sunday, the photographer said, “Those babies might not look like normal babies, but they are still beautiful and real to the families who are grieving for them.” And that’s just so true. Joseph was tiny and had trauma marks on him from birth. His chromosome disorder made him look similar to a Down syndrome baby. But he was still our baby. I spent a lot of time on Sunday night thinking about him.

And then life got hopping again. The Boy had his birthday and we got busy as usual. Moving on is really quite easy when you can’t stop to think about sadness.

But today I got an email from a family member who is going through something very similar to what we went through almost 8 years ago. My heart breaks for her. I wish I could help her through her pain. But I know I can’t, and that brings back memories of my own sadness.

I feel guilty because while I'm very sad for our relative, I'm also sad for me. That seems a little bit selfish, but it's honest. It makes me think about how Joseph's death must have made my mom remember a similar loss she experienced.

I’ll hug my kiddos tight again tonight – remembering that they have been such a comfort to me. And I’ll probably pull out those pictures of Joseph again… just to remember a little more clearly.

Birthday Slideshow

Tuesday, March 3, 2009


My little man is twelve today. They really don't stay little for very long, do they? He is still my sweet little guy, though.

We're taking him to a Japanese sushi/steakhouse for dinner. It should be a lot of fun!!

Here are a couple of then and now photos:

Then (1 day old):

Now (12 years old):

Happy Birthday to The Boy. I love you!!