Friday, November 14, 2008


Now that I am finally caught up on all those stinkin' questions, I can start posting guilt-free again. Things like more pictures of insane things my child does when I turn my head for five seconds.
She took one more step and then realized she was kinda stuck. But that she got that high by herself was enough for me. I think they have a quota for daily heart attacks for their parents.  
She made it all the way to the top by herself on this one. A number of times.
They're never too young to put 'em to work, right?

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Project Say Something: The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face. ...Yeah, So Doesn't Work for Me

So.... I really can't. Dan and I grew up in the same small town, went to all of the same schools so I know we knew of each other ages before we knew each other. Instead, all I have are some of the first memories I have of him. He says Chemistry when I was a junior in high school. All I remember about Chemistry is how much I hated it and how bad I was at it, not some geeky guy who would always try to sit by me. No, my first real memory of him was at the end of my junior year when I was half-assed running for Student Body President for my senior year. We were in debate together and he had the brilliant idea of doing something with my campaign slogan to do with Jessica Rabbit. I don't remember what it was, just that he made some fliers and posters with the association - whatever it was - and hung them around the school. That was when we first started to get to know each other. Then, school ended and I came back as a senior and got completely wrapped up in someone else, so much so that no one else or nothing else existed so I have no memory of him whatsoever til after I graduated and we started hanging out in the same circle of friends late in the summer. I remember going over to his house with friends to watch movies and we just started talking and totally missed the movies and pretty much forgot anyone else was there. Though it was still a while before anything went anywhere. When did I realize I liked him? "Liked him" liked him? When a mutual friend was being an ass and making fun of him for giving me concert tickets and Dan said, "If you saw how miserable she was every day, you'd do something just to put a smile on her face too." (Which totally wasn't true, he wouldn't have, he was my arch nemesis, he wouldn't have done anything to make me smile, though he did admit I was one of the only things he'd ever sell his soul for - so... whatever. But that's neither here nor there.) That's when I thought, "Huh, maybe there IS more to this guy." Good lord. That was 15 years ago.

Project Say Something: Much Better at the Sins than the Virtues

My favorite sin would be Lust.
Desire. Want. Warped/heightened sense of need. What's not to love?

Hands-down, I am the most guilty of Envy.
It's a sickness. I want everything everyone else has, everything I can't have and I hate those who have it when I don't.

The Virtues is a little more difficult. My favorites, I think, are Courage and Love. Because I'm not really so great at those. I find them very admirable qualities in others because I am missing them. (No, I don't envy that, I respect it. There's a difference!) My daughter has certainly helped me with love, I've been getting much better at it. But I don't know that I will ever be as good as I want to be. I don't do too well with Restraint either but it's probably in last place if I were to prioritize the virtues. Prudence, Justice and Hope are probably the ones I am the best with. Sometimes I do wish that it were not so much the case, but they're good ones to have, I think. They've kept me out of a lot of trouble and I believe have made me a responsible person. I'm okay being the responsible one (now. Maybe not when I was younger. But I am now). Faith is one I wish I had more of. I'm just not sure in what.

Project Say Something: Life on Repeat

If you could go back to any point in your life - not to change anything but just to experience/enjoy it/whatever - again, when would it be?
I think it would be my senior year in high school. Not because high school was anything great, hello! It was high school. But because that's when I started to really figure out who I am. And I learned it was okay to worry about me and care about me and that it was okay to be a little selfish and to look out for myself and to truly stand up for myself. It was also the first time I really recognized - or acknowledged, maybe - what happiness felt like. It was a big issue for me that year for some reason. Very focused on how happy I was not. And then one night, after a long conversation about it with some friends, I remember driving around in the dark in a snow storm. The night was so bright and the world was covered in a fresh layer of bright white snow and in driving around in that, in seeing everything covered so perfectly and beautifully, I felt - maybe recognized - for the first time ever a feeling of complete content, that everything was okay and right and beautiful. Even me. To have that exact feeling again - ESPECIALLY right now - would be awesome. That was when I started the never-ending process of self-evaluation, of always searching for ways to make me better. And I realized it was okay if I cared about that, about me instead of everyone else first. It was the year I did the most growing up (though I am the first one to admit to the people I knew then that it certainly wasn't enough) and the most changing. There were a lot of wonderful things that happened that year, and a number of not so wonderful things as well. But I would go back to it just to remind myself when I need it that I am worth something, that I am good at something, that there simply is value there when I lose it. It's one time in my life that that all become very clear, very easily to me.

Project Say Something: Comfort Foods

What are your comfort foods? And why?

Comfort food? I'm not much of a "comfort food" person. I'm more of a food is comfort type person. (Can't yah tell?!?) Seriously, I try to think of a food that I associate with comfort, one that reminds me of childhood or home, or just that old comfy-home-cookin' feeling and I think Cracker Barrell. But I think that's more advertising. I don't even like most the food there. Spaghetti maybe? It was one of my favorite foods growing up. No! I know! Tomato soup and grilled cheese sandwiches. With pickles. That's it. Nothing is better on a rainy, gloomy, fall day. Of course, it sounds absolutely terrible right now, but pretty sure, the next time I'm bored on a cold, rainy day, that'll be exactly what I want.

Project Say Something: I'm Sorry. So Sorry.

Here I go again. And this time - I *will* get caught up!

This is such a good question and I have had weeks to think about it and I just cannot come up with an answer I feel is as good an answer as the question deserves. Though I am sure there is a large (very large - I probably can't count that high large) number of letters of apology I could and probably should write.
Dear Shane,
I know you miss us. I know we had all just started to become really good friends. I wish we didn't have to move away too. I am sorry we left you out there alone. I'm sorry we let you guys get so close to Madeleine and then just ripped her away from you. And I'm really sorry I suck at conversation so I never IM you and you think you've been completely abandoned and forgotten. You'll never be forgotten. Though I can't promise about the abandoned, I kind of suck at being a good friend.
Dear Dan,

I'm really sorry you didn't get what you wanted yesterday. I'm also sorry you're in there watching a movie alone because you think this TV is too small and I think that couch isn't comfy and would rather stay in here and type silly blog posts. (Also, it's a sad movie and I don't like sad movies, sorry.)

To Just About Every Friend I've Ever Had,

I wish I were better at being a friend than I am. I'm sorry I so easily let myself fall away and the friendship die. That I am not willing to take the time and initiative to keep the friendship going - especially now that it's so easy, given email and instant messaging. I don't even have to pick up the phone or leave my house and I still can't make the effort. And I'm especially sorry to those of you from whom I've just walked away without any notice or explanation or anything. Especially when you were very, very close friends. I'm just not very good at small talk or initiating or carrying conversations. I'm really kind of boring and I let it get the best of me. Even at the cost of some amazing people. I deeply apologize for that. I am trying to work on it. I know it's a little late for some but hopefully it prevents others.

And lastly,
Dear Mom and Dad,

Holy Toledo. I am SO very sorry for all the ridiculously STUPID things I did growing up. I know I've said it before and I know I'll say it a million more times. More to hopefully avoid karma than anything, really! But man, I am sure sorry for all the unnecessary insanity and chaos and drama I caused in my youth. Aren't you so glad (and completely and totally surprised and shocked all to hell) that I turned out so well? (Who'd have ever guessed?? Not you, that's for sure.)

With deepest regret and apologies to you all,


Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Listening to Myself Through the Mouth of a Two-Year Old

I am sitting here listening to the toddler boss the 6-lb Chihuahua around the house.
"Come here, Peko! Go upstairs. Now. Peko, Come. One! Two! Three! Now!"

Oh my.

I so need to be a better parent! She's kinda bossy!!

(Even though it is funny and cute as hell.)

Thursday, November 6, 2008

The Kid Must Think It's New Year's Eve or Something

Imagine another set of stairs that looks just like this.

Imagine a toddler on this set of stairs patting a pile of this paper on to her head while giggling.

Imagine walking up these stairs into a bedroom that is not yours to find the paper shredder tipped over and half emptied across the bedroom floor.

Imagine glancing up to see the shelves of the closet in the bedroom that isn't yours covered in piles of this shredded paper.

Do you laugh? Cry? Run and hide and swear she isn't yours? Or do you kick yourself for not thinking to grab the camera much more quickly?

This is the kind of thing that happens when you leave a mischievous toddler to her own devices for three minutes. She starts out chasing the poor kitty and doggie to discover something much more fun, clever and creative.

Note to self: Never let the quiet time of an unseen toddler exceed 30 seconds.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Li'l Bumble Bee

This was the first year she actually got to go out and do anything in her costume. Before now, we didn't have the time or the places to go for it to matter. We were pretty excited to have the time AND the places to take her this year. Then I got hit with the flu (which was tons of fun in case you're wondering) and she decided to skip her nap for the day. By the time it was trick-or-treating time, she was a demon-bee and no fun at all. Though no matter how grouchy she was, she had no problem lighting up for every new person to "look!" at her adorable little dress. She was very proud of it. I would have to agree with her, it is pretty cute.
But next year, she's most definitely napping first!