Wednesday, April 30, 2008

He is always on my mind

Please pause for a moment and respect the man, the legend, my future husband - The GREAT Willie Nelson on his 75th birthday. I have a big plans to post about all of our special moments together, me and Willie, but somebody has to work.

I will tell you that in 1995 I scalped two tickets to see him play a small club in lower Manhattan - Tramps. Anybody been there? It has long since closed, but the peculiar thing about Tramps was that it didn't have a back door and the performers had to enter through the front. Knowing this, I camped with my 35mm camera (before digital, people) and got a quick pic of myself and the red headed stranger cheek to cheek! It is an amazing picture, absolutely priceless. I proudly displayed the framed photograph at both my office and my New York City apartment. When co-workers and friends would look at the picture, they would more often than not, honestly say:

"Is that your Dad?"



Silly Yankees.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Come Back Bossy Tangerine, Bossy Tangerine

Ah, but for a few short moments we shared linky love. And my hits! My hits were sky high.



And did you know? Did you know that my baby and Bossy share the same middle name? It's true. I read about it here and Bossy confirmed it herself. Break out the birth certificates. My other daughter's middle name is technically a vegetable. Care to guess?

Monday, April 28, 2008

They don't make a band-aid for this boo boo

For me, the trials of parenting have increased in intensity as my children age. And the test I am currently facing has me begging for some sleep deprivation or a good sandbox squabble. It seems as if, when a certain child gets frustrated, said child will hurt herself. Hurt herself on purpose. Ouch!

When I first discovered this phenomenon, it was limited to some red faced breath holding. Which has since escalated into pinching herself and for a humdinger, yesterday somebody pulled out a chunk of her own hair.

Holy hair products, help me. And to add to the insult the whole incident was brought on and witnessed by none other than my mother.

"Vanessa! You have GOT to do something about this! Vanessa, this is a SERIOUS problem. I am telling you, VANESSA, I've never seen anything like it. This is a SERIOUS PROBLEM, I tell you, VANESSA!"

Of course, I wanted to throw my hands in the air and bat it back to her. Claim that it was her fault, she drives people to hurt themselves. Take for instance her longtime boyfriend, a recovering alcoholic.

But I knew this problem with how my child was dealing with negative feelings was something that needed to be addressed. Nipped in the bud now so that I few years down the road, I don't I find steak knives underneath her bed or god forbid, worse.

So ever so gently this morning, I started a conversation with my daughter about some acceptable ways to deal with emotions. I let her make a few suggestions and praised them all as viable solutions. Yes screaming is a great way to release frustration. Screaming into a pillow - even better! I threw in the old standby counting to ten. Suggested taking deep breaths. And threw out my big gun, repeating a mantra. I offered up a phrase that I had learned from my grandmother that still serves me to this day: This too shall pass. This too shall pass. This too shall pass.


I hope it works.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Public Service Announcement

This is my brain:




This is my brain in my body:




See my buddy Shane, poking his head up over his computer behind me. Yesterday I tried to anonymously suggest that when it came to a type of drink, he thought of himself as a Tall Glass of Water. And you know what, he didn't even report me to HR. Gotta like that in a co-worker.

I'm .2 of pound away from 10! The inhumanity!! The leader attempted to convince me it was because I was wearing jeans. Jeans she said typically weigh 3 pounds. Next week, do you think they'll let me weigh in my underwear?

Question: are you sick of the Thursday photo? Or keep 'em coming. I kinda imagined I'd look like the AFTER photo by now. *sigh*

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Let's hear it for the Beau

You likey my new 3 month old masthead? Yep, that's an original from my Beaufriend.

When Beau and I worked together, the "door" to his cube was covered with Post-It® Notes and scraps of paper with different phrases utilizing the sounds of the of the name Beau, pronounced Bo, sometimes spelled Beaux. Beau-legged. Dumbeau. Beau & arrow. The funniest, most creative musings - those were mine. This apparently is a recurring sport in Beau's life. Right now, I'm imagining his locker at Broken Arrow High covered with neatly organized notes.

Once he mentioned that the as a group the people in our company had missed the most obvious play-on-words using his name. So I thought and I thought, because I love a challenge. Guesses where flying. And I finally guessed it: Elbeau. Get it? Like Elbow, but El-beau.

Well exciting thing are happening for the young Jedi. Today he was told, and I quote:

You're young and you're on FIRE!

Has a nicer compliment ever been bestowed?

*************************************


THURSDAY UPDATE: I meant to say, has a nicer compliment ever been BEAU-stowed?

Monday, April 21, 2008

'Cause I got a golden ticket

Yep. Opened up my Wonka™ bar and behold, I got a golden ticket. Now I only need a few things:

1 roundtrip airline ticket to the City by the Bay.
1 fabulous outfit.
1 set of natural yet sassy looking highlights.
10+ more pounds lost.
2 amazing to-die-for, danceable and deceivingly comfortable shoes.
10 darkly painted, perfectly filed nails.
32 bleached and polished teeth.
1 winning lottery ticket.

Either Willie or my fairy godmother needs to appear right about NOW!

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Weight a minute

Ugh here we are AGAIN, on a Thursday. This week found me holding steady. Even steven. Stuck/still at 9.6 lbs. And damn - cause I was really itchin' for that star sticker they give you at WW when you cross the 10 pound mark. I did manage to go to the gym and walk/jog a few times. Yay! But the quickie meeting Monday to announce that my boss' boss was "no longer with the company" sent me straight to the chocolate jar. Boo!

One day last week I overheard the girls talking and Lula said, "Hazel, remember when we used to go to McDonalds?"

We've all but eliminated the evil clown from our casual dining experiences. Just as I was about to stick a feather in my parenting cap, Lula confided in me that one of her little Kindergarten friends asked her if I was pregnant.

Horror.

Let's totally blame trendy shirts like these:



Get more of Maddox's fashion advice here. And then bookmark his site, because I have yet to find anything funnier in well the whole universe.


In other news,yesterday I opened a letter attached to a multi-page form from my insurance company disputing the diagnostic mammogram I received last month. They're trying to determine if I had/have a pre-existing condition. Yes, Aetna. I DO have a pre-existing condition. I have tits.

And here's your picture. (Notice the art behind my head. Hazel drew it and I love it because it looks like a The Incredibles inspired dominatrix)

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Changing the subject

I just spent an insane about of time sifting through every email I have ever sent. It was mildly amusing reading some of the subject lines.

Like this one to my mom:

I don't have your silver scapular necklace.

Or these two that remind me that I used to have a social life:

Re: Help! Babysitter??
MUST have a sitter Thurs!!!


I have no recollection of this one:

I need four.

Whatever it was, apparently I needed multiples. Oh, I bet it was concert tickets!

How about this one to a mommy friend of mine:

Hi! Wanted to touch base w/ your husband.

(And that not all I wanted to touch!) I am so kidding. But reading subject lines in emails allows you to add tone and take things out of context.

This one strikes me as extra chatty:

Re: Fwd: Re: Re: Re: Re: did you get my message?

Here is a typical one to my husband, before we were constantly connected through ichat.

Erik bring lunch to 9:30 gate & pick up at 3pm today

Which would be quickly followed by a:

Re: Re: Re: are you mad to me?


And then a:

Re: Re: Re: Re: thank you

There was the period when we sold a tons of stuff on craigslist.com:

Re: #1 Consumer Reports Rated JOGGING Stroller -- Kelty Kids - $100


Re: Bookshelves, Bookshelves, Bookshelves. We got 'em. You take 'em.

Re: Harry Potter Collection Extravaganza!!!! CD's & Hardcovers --Books 1-5 - $60

No wonder I am so successful as a advertising copywriter.

But this one, this one just might be a reoccurring theme:

I'm a mess.

Monday, April 14, 2008

Dress Rehearsal

It was early on in motherhood when I came to the realization that if you distill parenting down to its essential essence it is quite simply an exercise in letting go. You learn to let your toddler climb the stairs to the soaring heights of the playground slide and you trust with a certain amount of coaxing and the aid of gravity that your child will return to you. You drop you child off for the first day of nursery school and even though you've fantasized about having a few hours to yourself for years the minutes tick by like an eternity. On almost a daily basis, you get glimpses into the future. One that at times seems to be happen way to quickly. Take Saturday, when I got the telltale glimpse to the fact that seven is one third of the way to 21.

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Let's talk about the weather

You might say I am funny. I have been known to crack up a room. To turn a phrase, make a connection with the obvious in a humorous and dare I say, lighthearted way. However, one of the greatest compliments I have ever been given, is that I am fun.

Fun! Funny vs. Fun. There is a subtle difference. Once my mother-in-law bestowed the compliment out of the blue.

"You sound like a fun person to live with." she stated.

I was retelling about the successful cleaning routine I established when we lived on Coronado Street. We were in a small 1940's 2 bedroom - 1 bath with a detached garage and a full yard. It was huge when we first moved in, stretching our cramped one bedroom NYC apartment into a quaint one thousand square feet. Each family member was assigned a room and they were responsible for cleaning and keeping their room tidy throughout the week. A contest was established and rewards were doled.

Tonight, we started a fire in our fire pit to roast marshmallows. Because when it is suddenly in danger of freezing (when normally we'd be swimming), you cut dead limbs off your tree, set them on fire and make s'mores. Duh.

And that, my friends, it was got me yet another "You Are Fun" compliment. Now excuse me, I'm off to cover the plants.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Weight for it

Ok - super busy. But I wanted to be accountable for my whole Thursday WW thing. I'm down another 2.6 and that my friends, is with out the earrings.


Monday, April 7, 2008

I still got it

Every once in a while, I do something so inconceivably stupid I swear they'll take away my mommy card. I'm not talking about forgetting lunch money or RSVP-ing the day BEFORE the birthday party. I'm talking about lifting up my four year old daughter at the end of her second day of fullday Pre-K to discover that I'd sent her school in a dress with out any underwear. Or the time in an effort to coax Hazel home, I offered up the I'll race you carrot only to trip and fall while holding the newborn Lula in my arms. And then there was yesterday morning, where the first words out of Hazel's mouth were, "Mommy, the tooth fairy didn't take my tooth."

Whoa! Talk about falling down on the job. I honestly forgot all about it. After a rush of emotions (ignorance, incompetence, guilt) I opted for the creative shuffle. Quickly I scrawled out a fancy note, attached a few dollars and stuck it under the still sleeping Lula's pillow. My rational, if actual adults can't tell my kids apart? How in the world in the dark of night is a four inch fairy supposed to know the difference? The littlest bit later, a wide eyed Lula came running to her sister, note in hand. I heard Hazel sound out the words and they both shared a laugh. And then they ran to Mom to report the whole tale. And I sighed to myself, secure in the fact that I could keep my mommy card for at least one more day.



The note read:

Where is your tooth? I looked everywhere. It's been very busy. Please leave the tooth tonight. xoxo Tooth Fairy.

Sunday, April 6, 2008

Stuff AIDO likes

By now I'm sure you've heard about hilarious and very clever web site / soon to be released book Stuff White People Like. I say it is very clever because I am jealous and currently brainstorming my own million dollar idea. It is for a fact a three hundred thousand dollar idea and I'd settle for that too.

I was particularly struck by this paragraph in the post praising Universal Healthcare:

But the secret reason why all white people love socialized medicine is that they all love the idea of receiving health care without having a full-time job. This would allow them to work as a freelance designer/consultant/copywriter/photographer/blogger, open their own bookstore, stay at home with their kids, or be a part of an Internet start-up without having to worry about a benefits package. Though many of them would never follow this path, they appreciate having the option.

And to that, this white person would just like to add: living by the ocean, drinking micro-brews with her gay friends.

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Weight for me

I'm starting, err I should say I might be starting a new thing where on Thursdays, after my Weight Watcher's meeting, I will post a picture and and report on my week and my loss/gain.

First, let me honestly tell you I cheat. When I start, I always wear shoes and fill my pockets with change, lead and an extra small pygmy. Usually the day of a weigh in, I don't eat or drink anything until after the meeting. I take off everything I possibly can (earrings, pony tail holders, mascara) and exhale before I step on the scale.

Now remember, I usually have smashing success the first three to six weeks and next thing I know, I'm no longer a Weight Watchers member in good standing. This time, I'm going to attempt to treat it like a marathon. Slow and steady. Or at least keep with it at least until summer or beyond.

Recently there have been several pictures posted of me via email and the internet that I think are BEYOND unflattering. They're down right rude! Ugh. And because no one who loves me said anything like you don't really look like that, I've had to accept that the what I think I look like may not actually be what I look like. Eeeek. Suffice to say, the last picture some one took of me I felt like I looked as wide as I am tall.

So this week. I had two delightful Mexican dinners. One was a catered affair church fundraiser and the other was Bossy's excellent road trip meal. The latter INCLUDED margaritas. I ate oatmeal every day for breakfast and drank tons of water.

And the results for week one: SEVEN (7) Pounds Lost

True to form, I came out of the gate in a sprint.

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

A contest!

Oh boy! Oh boy! It's the FIRST AIDO contest!


Guess why I am NOT doing okay today and win a prize. Leave your answer in the comments and the person who comes the closest to the answer wins!

Because some of you may be familiar with:



I'll give you A CLUE! A CLUE!

The reason I am NOT doing okay has nothing to do with the girls, the weather or sex.

And in honor of my awesome night with Bossy,



the winner will receive and awesome prize from my basement. Except AIDO doesn't really have a basement so it will come from my garage.

What fun!

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

I have one of those faces

So last night, one of the first things Bossy said to me, was that I look like her friend Martha. You know Bossy's best friend Martha?! I was instantly ecstatic because looking like someone's BFF sure beats the pants off looking like that bitch in ninth grade who stole your boyfriend, started terrible rumors about you and persuaded the tough girls to terrorized you in gym class.

It wasn't until after I got home, that I realized that I should have asked if Bossy's best frend is:



Remember the star of stage and screen, Martha Plimpton?

You might remember her looking more like this



Or this




How ironic, that Bossy's friend is Martha and I've been hearing for almost twenty years:

You look like that chick from the



Personally I liked Martha Plimpton best, in the 1989 classic Parenthood, remember she was Keanue Reeves' angry girlfriend in the Ron Howard Oscar nominated film.

She also starred in 1996's Beautiful Girls. A film I've always fancied for it's title.