Monthly Archives: August 2011

It’s not easy being green

After a week and a half of working from home I decided that it was time to go back into the office and reintroduce myself to my boss.  I ironed my black linen pants and a favorite gold blouse that’s a good “end of summer and almost too late to wear white but still hotter than blazes” transitional piece, put on lipstick for the first time in two weeks, and filled a big cup of coffee in my travel mug to fuel my 20 minute drive to work.

And approximately 5 minutes before I got to the office, that big cup of coffee had somehow managed to find its way all down the front of my shirt.

Of course, I had just cleaned out my car over the weekend and removed the big roll of paper towels and every other scrap of napkin/absorbent material from under the seats. 

I had a meeting to make and no time to run home and iron change again, so I whipped into Target (thank you for opening early) and ran inside to see if there was anything that didn’t scream 16-year-old teeny bopper and would be work-appropriate.  They had all their new season stuff out and I had plenty to choose from, but let me tell you, I’m not feeling the love for the fall fashion direction.

Dolman sleeves? With stripes? And RUFFLES?

Please say no.

My pants were kinda’ flowy so I needed a fitted top to wear with them and those were a little hard to come by what with the tunic look that seems to abound until I found a stand with $8 t-shirts and wouldn’t you know they were exactly what I needed so I grabbed a teal green one and changed in the Target bathroom and headed off to work feeling like Sharon Stone wearing her Gap sweater to the Oscars.

And when I arrived at work, the whole office was abuzz because everyone showed up to find they had a present on their desk.

That’s right, a plastic shoebox.

And I didn’t know what to do with my shoebox since there wasn’t a note attached so I set it aside and sat down and started to work.  And after about six minutes I realized what the box was for because when I pivoted in my chair to throw the wrapper in the trashcan that for the last year has resided in the same spot under my desk, I realized that someone had removed it.

And when I asked my co-worker if she had borrowed my trashcan she informed me that in an effort to reduce the amount of trash collected at the office, all of our trash cans were removed and we’ve now been given shoeboxes that we’re responsible for emptying into “centralized collection points” throughout the building.

Because, clearly, the size of the receptacle has everything to do with how much trash we generate.

There are days I live in a Dilbert strip.

So I spent all day lowering my productivity because I was walking back and forth to the centralized waste collection site emptying my shoebox but at least I had on a cute outfit while I did it.

Have a nice day.

We’re okay

Just a quick post to say that we are fine and didn’t sustain any damage from Hurricane Irene.

Praying for all of y’all north of here.

Stay safe.

Five on Friday

1.  My hurricane prep is almost done.  I just need to get matches, instant coffee, fill up my car, and finish the laundry in the event we lose power.  It’s looking like we may get tropical storm force gusts and some rain in Raleigh but a fifty-mile shift to the west puts us in a different situation altogether.

That’s life in the “cone of uncertainty.”

Which is kinda’ like the “cone of shame” except with a heftier insurance premium attached.

2.  I will soon be wearing the cone of shame on my head if I don’t get to the salon. My roots are past cute.

3.  In a moment of weakness, I volunteered to host the 6th grade boys’ Bible study at my house this year.  I’m hoping it will give my boys more opportunity to build community with their friends at church and help them be better prepared to deal with the junk they’re facing from their peer group at school.  In some ways they’ve handled the transition to middle school well and in other instances, I see the need for growth and, hopefully, having a gang of kids over here once a week to talk over these things will be helpful.

I have a feeling I’m going to need more snack food.

4.  Speaking of snacks, the white food embargo continues at my house. I have been strong for a week, and if the scales don’t reflect progress tomorrow, Irene’s gonna’ have nothing on me.

5.  Have a nice day.

In which the day gets away from me

When I woke up yesterday, I had great plans to tackle the laundry and do some stuff at home because I had only one appointment on the calendar and that was to take the kids to the dentist for their six-month cleaning.

Not factored into the schedule were the hours of talking everyone off the ledge once they found out they had to go.  

Except for Travis who asked if he could stay there all day AND spend the night.

That boy loves him some dental chair time.

I was doing a little paid work before getting ready to leave to collect the boys from school and head over to our appointment when the phone rang and it was JJ informing me that his teacher told him he was not allowed in school because of his coughing. Bless his heart, he’s been hacking up a lung since last Thursday but since he hasn’t had any fever or other symptoms I’ve been sending him to school with a gut full of Robitussin and handfuls of cough drops.  Since I had taken him to the doctor Monday and we’d already done five rounds of nebulizer treatments to no avail, I decided that we needed to go back and see what else could be done.

I told J to hang out at the nurse’s office until I came to pick everyone up at 11, and by the time our dentist appointment was over (one cavity for Tommy – he was distraught) and we had spent thirty minutes at checkout where I had the opportunity to practice a lot of patience with Ms. My First Day on The New Computer System, it was too close to the end of the school day to make it worth driving over there twice so the kids ditched the last hour of school and Tommy and Travis got dropped off at home and JJ took a trip to the pediatrician’s office where I had scheduled an appointment with our favorite nurse practitioner.

His oxygen levels were low so she made an appointment for us at the hospital to get chest x-rays so we drove over there and hung out for a while and then we went to the pharmacy where I picked up four different medications to get him started on, three of which are pretty heavy duty.

I’m loving the one that knocked him out at bedtime and kept him asleep for nine hours straight.

I may have to get some of that for myself.

By the time we finally got back home (WHERE DID THE DAY GO?) it was time to start supper and get the kids fed and hand them off to Craig so I could make girl’s night with friends.  We had a lovely time sitting outside at Simply Crepes (and I exercised great restraint because everything there was NOT on my eating plan so I had a decaf coffee and smiled like it was okay) until I remembered that I hadn’t done laundry which, theoretically, was the primary domestic duty of the day and it wasn’t something that I could put off because it was Picture Day on Thursday and no one had clean clothes to wear.

So I went home and found out that Craig saved the day by doing laundry while I was gone.

And there was much rejoicing.

And beating about the head when he wondered why I was so tired when there was only one appointment on the calendar.

Have a nice day.

A whole lot of shaking going on

No sugar, impending hurricanes, and now EARTHQUAKES?

It’s getting a little ridiculous.

I wish there was a “where were you when the earth shook” story but, sadly, I’ve spent most of the last three days in a constant state of shakiness from lack of sugar so I can’t say that I felt a thing.

The earthquake hit near the end of the school day and when JJ hopped in the car I asked him if he felt anything and he instantly became alarmed and started throwing questions at me about where the epicenter was and how deep and WERE WE GOING TO DIE  and he decided I didn’t know enough to suit him so he grabbed my phone and started frantically researching it.

I love this kid because he’s just like me. 

There’s not a crisis that we can’t blow completely out of proportion. 

I have lived through a major earthquake.  When I was 6 years old, a major 7.5 quake hit Guatemala, leveling entire cities, killing over 20,000 and injuring thousands upon thousands more.  I remember that night clear as a bell.  I woke up to my bed shaking violently, like someone had grabbed the end and was moving it side to side.  Instantly my dad was there – I don’t think I even had screamed yet – and he snatched me out of the bed and started RUNNING down the hallway for the back door.

The hallway in our house had storage closets down one side and I remember as Dad ran the gauntlet seeing the doors open and slap shut, all by themselves. The walls were heaving and swaying, side to side, and I felt like nothing was straight.    It was just like a horror movie, where everything swirls and makes thunderous noise and there’s a strong, unseen evil presence that scares the mess out of you.

We ran through the dining room and I remember being sad that all of my mom’s pretty china was shattered across the floor.  I played tea with those cups and saucers a lot and it was a sick  feeling to see them broken in a million pieces.  We safely made it out to the back yard where my memory starts to get fuzzy about what happened next.  Did we stand in the yard?  Did we go in the street?  Did I fall back asleep or did I scream bloody murder and whine and complain and make a difficult situation even harder for my parents?

I have a feeling I know the answer to that question.

If my little ones are an indication of what I was like as a child, all I can say is, “I’m so very sorry.”

Images stolen/borrowed from Google.

Have a nice day.

Tuesday Tidbits

Did I say I was obsessing about not eating sugar?  Fortunately, there’s something new about which to obsess…..

See where that little “M” is on Sunday?

Yeah, that’s me.

Fun times.

Have a nice day.


Monday Musings


I went off sugar two days ago.

This is all I can think of….





Have a nice day because I’ll be in a corner gnawing my hand off.

Five on Friday

1.  If you see me out and about today, please be forewarned that I am wearing a skirt.


It’s Laundry Desperation Day.

2.  Wednesday’s sewing fiasco has not defeated me.  I went to Walmart and picked up another pattern and some funky fabric and I’m trying my hand at something even more complicated because I did such a stellar job on a simple bag. 

I’ve made good progress (it fits over my head!) and have only consulted YouTube three times (thank you, Crafts Channel).  The only things left to do are attach the yoke/collar/whatever you call it (and we wonder why I’m not better at this) and then attach the sleeves.  These two tasks are proving to be a bit tricky so they’re going to have to wait until I sweet-talk a friend into coming over and doing it for me  figure out what to do.

3.  I met a friend for breakfast at The Upper Crust  (their cinnamon rolls are the best in town) and another friend for coffee at Jubala Village Coffee yesterday and I was a little zippy after having consumed several quarts of coffee in the span of four hours.

The conversations were so good for my heart.

I don’t know why I’m always surprised by the different ways that God shows me He loves me.  This was a long week without Craig (he’s traveled five out of the last six weeks) and I was needing time with other adults and it just so happened that three friends called to ask me to get together with them this week.

Kept me from going off the ledge, they did.

4.  My friend Momologuer gifted me with a subscription to Birchbox this year.  Every month I get a package with samples of different creams, lotions, potions, and perfumes to try and it’s always a happy day when I go to the mailbox and find fun girly stuff to try.  This month I got a sample perfume that just might become my signature scent.  It’s called Orange Sanguine and it’s citrusy but not too crisp with some warm notes in it.

Of course, I tweeted Momologuer about it because she’s searching for HER signature scent ever since they discontinued her favorite perfume and NotNed, who was eavesdropping on our convo, was kind enough to point out that my “smelly alcohol” was a whopping $6,400 a gallon.

And I said, “Nah, nah, nah, I can’t hear you.”

5.  Have a nice day.

In which I sew

I was a little blue yesterday.  I think it might be that the busyness of the summer is over and I’m back to a little bit of “normal” whatever that means.  I dropped the boys off at school and was back home by 7:30.  I didn’t have any laundry to do, the house was clean and picked up, Craig was at work, the office didn’t need me and I sat down on the couch and just kinda’ looked around.

And no, exercising didn’t cross my mind.

It never does.

After wallowing for a few minutes, I realized that wasn’t fun either so I decided that a project was in order so I went to Jo-Ann’s in search of one.  Never mind that I had an unfinished quilt from January upstairs.

I wanted to try my hand at making a tunic top but I chickened out at the last minute because I’m not super confident in my sewing skills so I decided to make a reusable shopping bag because a) it looked simple and b) it looked like an hour project.


I had five pattern pieces cut out when it said I would only have three.

I had ditched the pattern because I didn’t understand the directions.

Dinner was looking questionable.

It was relaxing.

In the end, though, I wound up with something that resembled nothing like the picture on the front of the pattern and I could have bought half a dozen reusable bags at the store for what I put into it.

And the boys said, “Nice shirt, Mom.”

Have a nice day.


Monday Musings

I had so much fun with Amy this weekend.  She and the kids arrived Thursday afternoon and we threw everyone in the pool to wear them out and that didn’t seem to work because there’s some sort of hyperactive force field that goes into effect whenever our respective broods are together and there was lots of activity and refereeing that had to happen but somehow amongst the commotion we managed to cobble together important conversations about makeup, recipes, and our complete and utter lack of a fitness program.

The exercise conversation was laughable considering we had it over an open bag of tortilla chips and cheese dip.

On Friday we had a very fun lunch where I had the chance to introduce Amy to my Raleigh friends. I knew that I wanted to keep things simple so that we’d have a chance to sit and visit so I served chicken salad on croissants, fruit, and sliced tomatoes and mozzarella.

And I completely forgot until that morning that Kellie doesn’t do mayonnaise.

So I called her and said, “I forgot you don’t do mayo and I’m serving chicken salad!”

And she said, “I’m putting on my big girl britches.  I can eat it.”

And then I made the mistake of saying that it was the best gas station chicken salad in town  and that she would not regret her decision and I could tell from the very long pause that it might not have been the right thing to say.

Sorry, Kel.

It really was good, I promise.

And not at all loaded with petrochemicals.

(Left to right:  Amy, Kellie, and Heather)

(Left to right:  Sandy, Rachel, and Gretchen – and not pictured because she came after I took pictures and I forgot to take another one – the other Amy)

Amy had to leave on Saturday and while I was very sad to see her go, she left behind a reminder of her visit that makes me smile every time I see it.

Yes, that orange thing would be a Nerf dart stuck in the living room chandelier.

And you don’t even want to know how many kids we almost lost over the edge of the balcony trying to get it down.

Have a nice day.