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    Wednesday, April 29, 2009

    See, "Vagina" IS a Dirty Word If You Use It Right

    So I get these automated calls from a cell # that say "you could be losing money on your credit cards, press 1 to be connected to our reps to save you money, this is your last notice, or press 2 to be removed." I'm sure you've gotten them too.

    I've pressed 2 over and over, so today I pressed 1.

    Guy: Hello! I am so and so with credit services...

    Me: Yeah, what do I have to do to get taken off your list? Because I've pressed 2 so many times my finger hurts.

    Guy: You have to be more persistent, ma'am.

    Me: Really? How would I do that?

    Guy: Stick your phone up your vagina.

    Me: REALLY? Why don't you let me talk to you supervisor about that recommendation?

    Guy: {click}

    After I first picked my jaw up off the floor, and then stopped convulsing with laughter, I Googled the number. It's a New Brunswick cell number, and there are lots of complaints about this number online, although mine was the first complaint I saw where anyone was asked to make sweet love to themselves with a piece of household electronic equipment. But clearly this is a scam, and not a legitimate offer of any kind, so just remember that when you get the call. Maybe you could beat them to the punch and tell them to stick THEIR phone someplace.

    Consider yourself warned, then - if you get a cell phone call from 506-227-4564, it's so-and-so from New Brunswick telling you you that you have two choices: give up your credit card numbers and let them screw you, OR do it yourself with your Unidon cordless. Your choice.

    Tuesday, April 28, 2009

    Look, I Know You're New Here

    Well, not all that new - you've lived across the street for nearly a year now, George, but you've just recently moved in and brought your family (including your dog). And you seem like a nice guy overall.

    But the dog is a problem. Actually the dog is not the problem. What you ALLOW the dog to do is the problem.

    I'm sorry the house you bought from Brian doesn't have a fenced yard. It's no surprise, the back yard slopes about 70 degrees straight down. And I'm sorry you seem to have an aversion to tie-downs. Really, I am. And I'm sorry you don't seem to want to walk the dog. Seriously so sorry.

    But if you don't stop letting your stupid dog run all over the neighborhood, including in my yard and up to my back fence, thereby sending my dogs into a frothy, barking fury at 7:30 in the morning, I'm going to start feeding him tainted meat when he comes over. I swear to god. Big, juicy chunks of tainted meat.



    OK, fine, I won't do that. (You people know me too well.)

    I will, however, call the city and report your stupid dog as at-large. So TIE him up, LOCK him up, or bring your ass outside and WALK him on a leash. We have a fucking leash law here in the Big O, asshat, and if I have to follow it, then so do you.

    Better yet, maybe I'll just let MY dogs come over and shit in YOUR yard and bark and wake YOU up.

    I'm glad we had this little talk. It's nice to have a plan of action.

    Monday, April 27, 2009

    Monday Memorandum V 4.0

    Morning, all. It's Monday. It's relatively early here and I am still in the morning grumpy period of my day, so this will most likely be short and not-so-sweet.

    Garage Sale
    Mrs M and I are having one this week at their house, and we are busting our butts getting ready for it. My livingroom looks like my storage closet exploded in there...which it kind of did, in effect. I've been talking about the level of excess of clothing we have in this house, but only now is it coming into true focus. Dear sweet Mary we have a lot of clothes. After the sale either many residents of Omaha, OR Salvation Army, will have lots of clothes. Either way, we will not. I won't know what to do with all those storage totes. But I'll manage.

    Beach Forecast
    Occupation on the beach has been spotty at best the last week, but hoping to get more time under my belt this week. Weight is holding steady but not going down because, well, I'm not always on the beach, and we all know how that goes. That fried ice cream at ElMatador Saturday night did not do me ANY favors.

    Fundraiser Fun
    It really was, our cool little dinner last week at preschool. I totally rocked the snack walk, if I say so myself. Greg claims the line was clear out into the hallway. I'll take his word for it. But the kids had fun, and with any luck we raised a good chunk of money for Samantha's preschool Nature Center. And with any luck I'll remember next year to not sign up for so much crap in April.

    Really, that's about it, folks. I will be consumed with garage sale stuff most of this week. Except for this morning - this morning I have GOT to clean my house, because holy MOLY it's trashed. I won't even TELL you how many days it's been since I've actually cleaned my kitchen. So I'll do that this morning in lieu of garage sale pricing, and get Samantha off to school and Jackson down for his nap, and then get back at it. Pretty exciting stuff this week, right? Yeah, I know.

    Hope you have a great week and I hope to be back to blogging more soon!

    Friday, April 17, 2009

    If You Start Noticing Patches of Hair Falling Out Of Me Between Now and June, Here's Why

    Preschool fundraiser dinner - I'm chairing Decorations and Snack Walk
    Preschool field trip
    Birthday Party
    Bridal Shower
    Mother's Day
    Preschool Mother's Tea Day
    Preschool End-of-the-Year Picnic
    Garage Sale (two days plus prep)
    Bake Dessert for Teachers
    Make 8 batches pink play-doh for preschool
    Baby shower
    Wedding (Greg ushing)
    Wedding (same day as the first)
    Graduation Party
    Graduation Party

    Add to that the constant, never-ending chores like housework, laundry, raising kids, trying to get my garden in, yard work which starts about now, outdoor projects, Dad's books, Mom's book, paying bills, maintaining relationships and getting to sleep once in a while, and it's no wonder I'm considering taking up hermitism as a way of life. The good news is that Greg's work is so slow right now that he has all kinds of time to help me. Yeah, so that's not really good news, now, is it, since all of the things on my neato list up there require money in some way, shape or form. He keeps assuring me it's going to pick up soon. I am trusting that he's right.

    I should note something. NOT trying to be an ass here. So grateful to be a part of so many people's lives, truly. So glad to be blessed with the bounty of opportunities to share in all of the grand pomp and circumstance that happens in the spring at weddings, graduations, and parties of all kinds. Not dismissing or wishing away any of it by any means.

    Just wishing it wasn't all happening in the next 38 days!

    And I know everyone's busy this time of year, this is not some new brand of suffering, I know that. So maybe we can all just commiserate together for a minute before we get back to being busy. I have cookies to make tonight, four loads of laundry just to get us so we all have things to wear and towels to use, a house to clean and kids to get to bed.

    Uh, I should note, though - in June, I will be unavailable. For anything. Don't ask. Seriously, I'm hiding. I may unhook the phones and bolt all the doors shut, save the one that leads out we can go play. And weed. And paint the foundation. And mow. And clean up dog poop. And...

    It never stops, does it? Life truly IS what happens while you're busy making other plans.

    Thursday, April 16, 2009

    Conversations That Show WHY Candy Is Not So Dandy

    As I was finishing up Candy Is Not So Dandy, Samantha and I had this little gem:

    S: Mom, can we have these candy necklaces I found in your purse?

    Me: No. I'm saving them for a trip to the store and you can have them as a special treat when you need something to keep you occupied in the store, OK? And get out of my purse.

    S: But MOOOOOOM, why can't I have it NOOOOW?

    Me: I just told you why. We'll have them at the store.

    S: But other kids get to have them when they're NOT at the store!

    Me: Samantha, you don't know what other kids get and what they don't get.

    S: Mom, I KNOW what goes on in the world.

    {Pause while I turn to LMAO and roll my eyes}

    Me: Oh, you do? Guess what else goes on in the world? Some people's moms throw out ALL the Easter candy and don't give them ANY of it - since you are so hot on what goes on in the world, maybe you'd like to give that a try?

    S: No.

    Me: Then put back the candy necklaces and stay out of my purse.


    I always wondered what the big deal was - in my childhood, Mom so often told me, with great vigor, "Get OUT of my purse!" Now I get it. Once again...sorry, Mom.

    Candy Is Not So Dandy

    So it's been established that I'm no nazi about my kids not having candy. I'm not opposed to them sampling the sweeter things in life, and I'm no health food freak who insists that sugar shall never touch my kids' lips. Let me just say THAT to begin. M'kay? 'Kay. So no "loosen up, it's only once a year and you're being a hard-ass" comments, alright?

    But seriously, folks. NINE. NINE Easter baskets. They got NINE Easter baskets from family on Easter Sunday. This does NOT include the Easter baskets they placed carefully on the kitchen table Saturday night that the Easter Bunny kindly filled with some of their (and Mommy and Daddy's) favorite treats. So actually, it's ELEVEN.

    Oh, but we can't forget the egg hunts. HuntS, that's what I said. Plural. As in...THREE. So add to those baskets, dozens and dozens of plastic eggs full of crap. Because SURELY the baskets didn't have ENOUGH sugar in them, right? Two dozen eggs a piece with more candy will fix that!

    Now, remember that I have TWO children. If you distribute the baskets evenly between the members of the household (and none of us needs that, really) we could EACH have close to THREE ENTIRE EASTER BASKETS per person! Yes, I'm shouting - get over it. If you had all this crap in your house you'd be shouting, too.

    Why? Or more accurately, how did they get nine Easter baskets, excluding the two they are SUPPOSED to get? Well, one grandma, and 2 of her sisters, each brought one for each kid. That's six. BIL and his wife brought each kid a bag of candy, as well (OK, not a traditional "basket" per se, but in the same spirit...don't get hung up in the semantics, here, people...). That's eight. And my dad had one basket for the entire family (hey, THERE'S a novel concept some OTHER people could try), so that makes nine. Nine baskets, with more kinds and flavors of candy than any fourteen childreen need, let alone just two.

    But really, you may ask, how much candy could that be, really?


    You don't even KNOW.

    But you will before we're done here. Stay with me on this.

    Ask me how dedicated I am to you, dear reader. Ask me, go ahead.

    Here's how dedicated I am - I not only photographed the sugar-filled booty, I also sorted and counted it. I know, right? Totally anal, but only done for your understanding of the real, true level of confectionery excess that darkens my kitchen counter.

    Let's see...which first? The pictures, or the list? Hmm. Decisions, decisions. Let's start with the list, I think. I should note that the list includes items that may have been eaten by photographing time (again, don't get hung up on the little stuff, just trust me). OK, on with the list:

    Laffy Taffy - 15
    Crabby Patties - 4
    Pop Rocks - 6
    Rings/Necklaces - 4
    Sweet Tarts/Sprees - 40
    Bubble Gum - 36
    Mini-Eggs - 76
    Kisses - 66
    Milk Creme Eggs - 10
    Mini Twix - 8
    Mini Candy Bars (Snickers, Milky Way, etc.) - 30
    Mini Nerds - 4
    Candy Bunnies - 7
    Bubble Gum Eggs (12 pc pack) - 2
    Paas Jellies (6 pc packs) - 8
    Mini Peanut Butter Cups - 8
    Peanut Butter Eggs - 6
    Mini M&M (Packs) - 24
    Milky Way Bunnies - 6
    Pez (2 pack) - 2
    Peeps (12 pc pack) - 2
    Hard candies (packs) - 12
    Carrot O' Robin Eggs - 1
    Suckers - 2
    Hollow big candies - 8
    Fruit/applesauce - 8 (MIL gets credit for these)
    Marshmallow eggs - 4
    Also...assorted M&M's, jelly beans, candy corns, stickers, erasers, hackey sacs, football, bouncy balls, devotional CDs, and two outfits (for which Aunt P gets credit)

    Yes, I'm serious. Yes, they REALLY got that much crap. Yes, it's too much. Yes, it's excessive and unnecessary and out of control.

    What? It doesn't sound that bad? You don't think it's THAT much candy? Oh. Alright. Let me SHOW you just how much candy it is, while you keep in mind that it's intended for a 2-year old and a 5-year old who get to pick ONE or TWO pieces of candy per day when it's in the house.


    I know, right?


    Not impressive enough? Doesn't give you the full feel of the volume we're talking about? Fine. Let's try an aerial view (I had to hold the camera at CEILING LEVEL to get it all in the frame, people...):


    Still need more? Ok - close-ups, just for you:




    As my niece would have once said, it's "totally redick". There is NO REASON for this. I mean, other than the life-long contest going on to see who can overindulge the little ones more - there is THAT reason. (I didn't say it wasn't a completely insane, ridiculous reason, did I?)

    I've already sent a gallon-sized Ziploc bag with Greg to take to work for the office folks to devour. They may get another one. Or I may donate most of it, although I'm not sure to where - nobody really needs this crap.

    Maybe you're a big fan of the candy. Maybe you're thinking "Why not just let the kids have it a little bit at a time?"

    Oh, they'll get some, "a little bit at a time". But do you know how LONG it would take them to eat this much candy? Let's say I let them pick two candies a day. That's four a day, OK? Roughly, if we were to go that route, and NOT counting jelly beans, M&Ms, etc., they would have to have candy twice a day for 108 (that's ONE HUNDRED AND EIGHT DAYS) IN A ROW to get rid of it. Remember that those 12 packs of gum? That's 24 servings of gum, PLUS the 36 individual pieces of gum - just the damn gum could take more than two weeks!

    So there is NO WAY ON GOD'S GREEN EARTH I am listening to candy begging for the next 108 days (that's three and a half MONTHS, folks). It's just not happening. We'll be half way to Halloween!

    Sigh. So what's the lesson? The big picture, if you will? Here it is, in a candy-flavored nutshell: stop buying other people's kids candy. Seriously. The Easter Bunny does his job, you don't need to help. You know what you do, when you do that? You disappoint the kids, because they see all this crap, and then I have to be the bad guy and not let them eat it all. So do us all a favor - either get your own kids, remember how YOU'D have felt if someone sent all this crap home with you when YOU had kids, buy candy for yourself, or (and it's really what I recommend) simply decide that it's OK to just enjoy the holidays WITHOUT spending money on crap that nobody needs (and already has) anyway.

    Saturday, April 11, 2009

    To All It May Concern

    To the asshole trying to merge in front of me at 12:45 this morning as I came home from B's house: you best put your foot in it if you're going to pull your stupid piece of shit car in front of my van on the interstate. You're an asshat. Move it or lose it.

    To the complete morons who previously owned this house at some point: Why did you bury more than 100 bricks, laid out in a REALLY stupid pattern, three inches under the grass in my back yard? Was it a makeshift patio that you just let the grass and dirt take over? Are you just that stupid? I think yes. Yes, you are.

    To the people in the world who decide who can or can't buy houses: PLEASE implement an IQ test. Soon. Every person who's ever owned this house before us lacks the basic intelligence to make ANY good decisions required of a homeowner. This buried brick bullshit is just Case-In-Point #2356 since 2005.

    To the made-me-feel-skinny-moron on the Little Rascal in Target with the 300-pound 8 year old riding in front of you: Here's a tip. When you RAM INTO THE BACK OF SOMEONE while they are patiently waiting in line, and push them so hard that you propel them INTO the side of the conveyor belt, the polite thing to say is "I'm so sorry"... or "I apologize"... or even "Excuse me, I didn't mean to do that". Your the-lights-are-on-but-nobody's-home expression, which I saw when I turned to see who had tried to assissinate me by motorized shopping cart, saved you from the verbal lashing I had planned from the moment I felt my knees knocked out from under me. Clearly you are TOO STUPID to understand how to function in the world. Feel free to send someone else to do your shopping for Ho-ho's and National Enquirer next time.

    To my husband: If I left the game on, at a continue point, it's because I hadn't cleared that level yet, and planned to return soon. Just so you know in the future. Cuz' I'm SURE you wouldn't just jack me on purpose so you can play YOUR game. Hope you got YOUR level cleared, though. Smooches. Oh, and you're welcome to get me back to where I was - that level sucks (which is WHY I left it on...but I think you knew that).

    To Maidenform: THANK YOU for your new body shaper which I picked up tonight and would like to wear all day every day. It is all I have looked for in a lycra garment for years and years. The "flap" crotch should work fine when I have to pee, but I'll get back to you on how it works when I need to drop some friends off at the pool. I see me undressing myself in Aunt P's bathroom tomorrow, and trying not to hurt myself in the process, just to take a dump. Stay tuned.

    To Facebook: Your "new" format sucks my ass (and that's no small task). Put it the fuck back. Or I'll go back to school and learn all about programming and build my own site based on your OLD format. I'll do it. Don't you make me go and get a life. Just put it back.

    To my ILs: Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. We love you and we are grateful.

    To my sister: Call Dad back. Please? Please. I'm begging you. You're killing me.

    To the makers of Starburst: Why must you make jelly beans? Why? You seemingly like my ass nice and fat.

    To myself: You also seemingly like my ass nice and fat. Put the fork down. Get back on the Beach before your huge whaleness of a body GETS BEACHED there for good. They'll bring in a helicopter and giant mesh straps, and try to haul your mass back out to sea, but it'll be too late. The Starburst Jelly Beans and the chicken nuggets with honey mustard sauce will have done their terrible work. And drink some water once in a while, for fuck's sake. Just because diet soda LISTS water as an ingredient doesn't mean it's a great substitute.

    To you, my readers: Have a blessed weekend, and thanks for reading.

    Wednesday, April 8, 2009

    When I Say It's Trashed

    That's what I mean. Trashed.

    OK, it's not generally totally trashed. There are many phases, but I like to keep it from getting unlivable all too often. But I wanted to show you, dear reader, just what it looks like when Cathy takes just 36 hours "off", even if only figuratively. Not absent in body, but partly in mind - choosing to ignore and disregard what needs to be done (on practically an hourly basis) in just one room, for just a little more than one day. See, I've been a little bit, uh...what's the word...bitchy. Irritated. Disconcerted. Annoyed. But that's another blog.

    The effect of my Grumpfest is that the kitchen went to crap in a little more than one day. And that, in all its glory, is what I wanted to show you. So I give you, in color,

    "What Happens When Cathy Spends 36 Hours In IGiveAFuckLand"

    Nice, huh? It's not a huge picture (that's no accident, folks) but you can clearly see parts of most every meal and snack that the kids, Greg and I have eaten since yesterday. And the flowers we bought on Sunday night. And the mail. And the empty milk carton. And the dirty counters. And the sink full of dishes.

    So Momma checked back in, got back on the horse, and got her proverbial poop back in a group.

    Much better, I think. And it helps my mood a little to know tomorrow starts with, if nothing else, a clean kitchen.

    Saturday, April 4, 2009

    Super Fantastic Ultra-Dorktastic

    So I'm not even sure if "dork" is the right word.

    Maybe "goober" or "eccentric" would work better. And I concede that "funny" is every bit as accurate and I'm not saying this as a bad thing, or a reflection of love lost. I'm just sayin'.

    I'm kind of a big dork.

    {Aaaand a HUSH falls over the crowd.}

    It's true. I am more self-aware than ever, here in the middle of my life, and I'm more able to see myself from outside myself all the time. And what I see, frankly, in many ways, is a dork. And not because I love video games, or the Muppets, or because I shop at Walmart, or because I wouldn't know a Coach bag from a Faded Glory bag, or because I think heels are the stupidest shoe ever invented. And I'm not saying that I'm not OK just the way I am. I'm just sayin'.

    Ok, here's the deal. I know I have my funny moments, and I'm often the life of the party, causing laughter with my witty words. Right? Right. But sometimes, as I get older, I'm starting to get that people, while they laugh with me, are also laughing...maybe not "at", but certainly "towards" me. I have an aunt who I suspect I am very much like - she is always cracking jokes, making funny voices and faces, and everyone rolls when this aunt is around. But I also know we also sit around and say "She's really something else!" when she's NOT around. I suspect I've been lumped in the "somthing else" category, and rightfully so.

    This is not an entirely new revelation - I've said for years that I'm not for everybody, and I get that. And I'm really OK with it, too. If everyone liked everyone and we all stood around adoring each other our whole lives, that'd just be weird. AND I get that there are people who really do love me just as I am, and find my humor and my conversation style perfectly lovely and endearing. I also get that my dorkness does not make me undeserving of love or friendship. That's not what this is about.

    This is about me knowing I'm a big dork. That when I make funny statements, and use silly voices and outlandish facial expressions to make people laugh, it's conveying a certain style of dorkness. Not mad at me, don't dislike me because of it - I'm just coming to a real place of understanding this one thing about me. Just realizing the deep-inside wish to be a really, really cool lady who is super-chic and classy, who always says the right thing, and always gives off that sophisticated air, is probably just not ever going to be a reality in my life. I can totally fake it for short periods of time, but in the end, the Dork always re-emerges (bringing with her - yes, laughter and fun - but also some pretty dorktastic vibes along for the ride).

    So what's our lesson here, people? I guess maybe it's that part of this journey is realizing WHO and WHAT we really are, and being able to embrace it, even if it's not what we wanted to be when we grew up. So fine, I'm a dork. Hey, man, I can say it - dork. Dorkdeedork dork. And I'm no less lovable because I of it (I don't think I am - at least not to the people who matter, anyway), and I have friends and family who love and respect me, despite my dorkish ways.

    And most importantly, I hope that if my kids grow up to be dorks that they will have this revelation sooner than 35 years into their journeys. They'll be much happier once they figure it out. I think I am.

    I Wonder If They Put Notebooks on Lanyards

    You know, a lanyard? (I love to say that with a northern accent, and follow it up with "Well ya, for corn's sake..." - don't ask me why.) A lanyard, in case you don't know, is that string that goes around your neck to hold your keys, name tag, whatever? Well, I need one with a notebook on it, so when I have all of these brilliant blog ideas and topics throughout my day I don't have to find someplace to right it down. I've lost at least three in the last two days. Rigoddamndiculous.

    Thursday, April 2, 2009

    Holy Absent Batman

    So where the hell have I been? And is BlogHer Ads going to drop me for not updating on a regular basis? And why am I not writing more?

    All good questions, people. All of them. Where to start? Well, all of last week the entire lot of us were busy fighting off the urge to crawl in bed and die, fighting off at least two different viruses which were painful and yucky to survive. So last week, that's where I was. Before that, not sure - too long ago. I know that after Aimee's birthday I didn't feel like writing much for a few days. There is a part of this blog that reminds me of her so much that being here is often difficult.

    BlogHer Ads - I promise to do better. Please don't drop me. Pretty please?

    I am not writing more because I am not making good use of my time. Is that clear enough? I am jacking around too much, staying up too late (and not to blog, unfortunately), and it needs to change. The garage sale is coming at me with blinding speed and I seem to have come to a stand-still in preparations for that. I am helping Dad on his books, which is arduous and difficult and slow-going. I am planning our garden. My house work is perpetually undone at some level, and catching up one part of it creates a deficit in some other area, and the tail-chasing continues.
    TGPMo2009 is still in a holding pattern. If you could see me now, you'd see me rolling my fracking eyes about it.

    So what else is new? Well, Greg's work is slow. Slooooowwwww. We are going to have to make some changes around here if things don't pick up soon. But he just won Employee of the Month...again. It's getting embarrassing for him, frankly - that's five times in less than five years. He also went to the dentist today, for which I think he is done being mad at me for - I made the appointment for him after much "discussion" about it. He seems to be one of the very rare people in the world who, quite literally, do not make tartar. One whose teeth do not calcify. The hygienist did NOT believe how long it's been since his last cleaning. Whatever. He gets all the breaks. No tartar, AND he gets to be married to me? Lu-cky.

    The kids are very much into "art time" and love to draw, paste, and cut at the kitchen table, which is fun and exciting, but messy. They also love playing outside, and are enjoying occasional moments outside "on their own" - with Mommy or Daddy watching through the open kitchen windows, in the fenced yard. Big stuff around here.

    I am still scratching and fighting to stay on the beach, and not always doing so well. Part of the snack I had tonight from Taco Bell rhymes with "fleecy trouble neat schlumito" - and it is NOT on the plan. Still have book ideas that I don't work on, still have craft ideas that I don't work on, and still suck at laundry.

    Oh, and the preschool fundraiser event is coming up in a few weeks - I am chairing the snack walk, and decorations. AND I'm making dessert for the teachers' lunch for the month of April - the day before our garage sale starts. Something tells me they'll be getting one-pan brownies...or Wal-Mart bakery brownies.

    I have several blog ideas in the works here, I promise, and will be doing my level best to finish them up and post them soon. Promise. Gotta go clean my kitchen - we are doubling the number of kids in our house for the day tomorrow, and I should at least START the day with a clean house. Hope your weekend is wonderful, folks!