••• Monday, May 29, 2006

Under the Famdar 

Stealth blogging. From cottage. Lots of pictures. Few words. Little to no editing. ::I am getting pretty damn good at closing this window at the speed of a click. Good thing my father-in-law's entrance into the room is always preceded by a gimpy dog with a jingly collar::

Refreshingly Naughty
Friday. Air is chilly. Water temp is still rebounding from the winter freeze. I'm in the cottage rationing toilet flush tokens. Husband is outside with the Cakers.

I then step onto the porch to find my girl swimming. Wearing a dress. So I ask my husband if he gave the Cakers permission to swim in her dress. He says no. Of course not. So I haul her frozen ass out of the lake and perpetrate a colossal chastisement upon her, complete with a threat of missing the first boat ride of the season.

That's right. I was playing some serious shit. With my husband by my side, nodding to the beat.

Later that evening, I unload my camera from the day's take. Following is sample of what I find:

Says my husband in his defense: "You asked me if I told her she could go swimming in her dress. I never did. She never asked."

There has also been some non-corrupt activity going on around here. When not swimming with the penguins or making sand angels (yah, lay in the sand and flap your wings), Cakers indulges in her new preoccupation with catching minnows.

I bet I have 30 shots of her at various points on the dock, in at least three different outfits. This is one of my faves. ::Picture removed 8/15/06 for mysterious reasons. Sorry.::

Other highlights of the weekend:
1)Went for a four mile hike with husband, on a local bike/jog/hike trail. Spent most of the time trying to figure out why there is a handicap spot in the parking lot at the head of the trail.

2) The Dollar General is still the best spot for holiday weekend emergency sunglass purchase. And only in Northern Michigan can you try on Foster Grants to the tune of the cashier telling every customer passing through about the fight in the back of the store, between two customers, just minutes ago. Said cashier is also chewing on a 12-inch blimpie while running the register and telling her tale, 'cause the store's been so busy that she ain't had no breakfast or lunch today.

3) The Dollar General sells ringlet hair pieces in an assortment of colors. A troop of tweeners were trying them on. This item definitely met the seal of approval by the Dollar General pubescent constituency.

I'll leave you with this shot I took last night of our neighboring dock:

Have a refreshingly naughty Monday.

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••• Saturday, May 20, 2006

Baby Showers... 

...Bring long work hours.

J is for Job

You may not know this, but some time during the last few weeks, I picked up a second job: Baby catcher. In fact, I'm damn sure you didn't know this because I didn't figure it out until just a couple of days ago.

Normally, my job entails the random crisis.

Lately, my job has entailed the random Normal. Very random. In fact, Normal and my PeriPausal menstrual cycle seem to be on the same schedule. Spotty. Nearly every day, for the past month, something has happened at work that requires immediate, emergency level attention. As in put-down-the-coffee-cup-mid-sip important. As in kick-the-current-client-to-curb-mid-whine important. As in Somebody-Catch-the-Baby! important.*

Now, if my job description included baby catching as the primary responsibility, I know that I would try to be the best little baby catcher I could be. Without complaint. The problem is, my job description includes only the random baby catch, which means I have many other very important, non-crisis oriented responsibilties, to people who won't give a rat's ass about babies falling from the sky when my report is late and/or crappily written. Or why I'm not seeing my other clients, or calling parents, or scheduling the last team meeting of the year ::shit, note to self for Monday. Schedule last team meeting for year, falling babies notwithstanding.::

Initially my J was gonna be for June. Right now, June is nothing to me but another looming deadline I feel I will never meet. Of course, I will. Meet it. But people, I'm gonna be in a world of hurt getting there. But for now, all I'm asking for is one or two days of working under Normal advisories.

If I get that, then I'll know it's gonna be okay.

Knitting Knuggets
As of this afternoon, I've finished all pieces to The Cakers heart motif sweater. This picture was obviously taken before sleeve two was born. It looks just like the first one.

Hopefully I'll soon have my third (just third?) Completed in 2006 item in the sidebar. Ugh. Ya know, it's amazing how much knitting you can get done if you actually sit down and, uh, knit.

I keep promising I'll be back and I keep really meaning it. Really. But now I gotta go. Oh, Baby. I really do.

*I started this post Thursday night. I just heard about Brittny dropping her baby a few hours ago, from my husband. I blame myself. I need to keep my mojo under lock and key.
**Actually, I've started a couple different posts this week. I don't know where it all goes, people. And on that note, I've been to a grand total of three blogs over the past week. I think I may have even commented. Sorry if I'm missing anything big.

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••• Sunday, May 14, 2006

A Mother Daze Story 

My personal celebration of the most hallowed relationship known to humankind began last night, about 8:30 p.m. That was when I set out to get me a piece of The Cakers, who had been sent upstairs to get into Jammies a good 20 minutes before.

A yell up the stairs just five minutes earlier had brought a reassuring response that the girl would soon be standing before me, donning pink jams and a face free of chocolate pudding residue ::Oreo. To die for. No cookie crumbs. just black chocolate and vanilla pudding parfait. Mmmm. Need some now.:: But no.

When I arrived at the top of the stairs I was greeted by a butt-nekkid girl, with washcloth in hand and guilt in face.
What are you doing?

Nothingk. ::She's at that developmental phase of over-enunciation.::

Why aren't you ready for bed?

I was washing.

What's that smell?


You smell terrible.

I used your bafume.

I don't have any bafume that causes respiratory distress.

I'll show you.
So we pad down the hallway to my room, where she shows me the collector's decanter of Avon's Sweet Honesty that I've owned since 1975. It's a birdcage and she's been fascinated by it since early toddlerhood.

Then we have the little talk, again, about touching mommy's stuff without permission and how we'll have to make a new rule about her not being allowed into mommy's room if she can't follow the rules, and dang girl, how you stank...Prompting her to burst into spontaneous flames of caterwaul. Before sweeping her up in a comfort hug, I milk the moment by telling her to remember this bad feeling next time she's thinking about being naughty. Pouting a lower lip that appears to be channelling Ms. Jolie, she nods and agrees to go straight to bed.

12:15 a.m.: I'm getting ready for bed when my husband's alarm goes off. Hmmm. I wonder how that happened? Not.

5:00 a.m.: Cat is crying to go out. She was out when we went to bed, so the college boy must have let her in, after being told to leave her outside when he comes home at night (or technically wee wee morning) at least 14 gazillionteemth times. Just last week.

My husband gets up to toss the cat and comes back to bed with a report that my son is playing video games in the living room. He then he wonders aloud why couldn't he let the cat out? I don't know. I say. Maybe he's suffered some kind of paralysis or brain damage. I'll check it out first thing in the morning. Having gotten a little worked up over that conversation, I had some trouble falling back to sleep.

But I do. Fall back to sleep. Only to be harshly reawakened by my alarm clock going off at 6:00 a.m. Hmmm. I wonder how that happened? Not. I guess I shouldn't be too mad. I did get fair warning, at 12:15.

While waiting for the adrenaline rush to settle, I hear my boy make a trip up, then back down the stairs and I start to feel a little agitated. Since I'm pretty much "up" from the recent heart alarm, I go downstairs to have an early morning Mother's Day chat, in which I tell the manchild that the keeping of Elvis the Vampire hours ain't gonna fly here. We're working folk. Need sleep. Although he tries to make it into an argument, we both know that there is none. I go back to bed.

7:00 am: Cheddar runs downstairs like he means business and my husband follows him down. Fifteen minutes later, husband returns to bed with the news that Cheddar didn't make it and peed all over the entryway carpeting. Since I'm a quick study of rhythmic slumber and this particular transgression was not related to any direct spawn of mine, I fall back to sleep straight away.

8:00 a.m.: Barely showing a blip on my Sleepdar, The Cakers wakes up and goes downstairs with daddy.

8:35 a.m.: I awaken to The Cakers crying "Mah-Meee!" downstairs. Because calling for me is her typical response to a tongue lashing from daddy, I figure it's all under control and doze off again. A couple minutes later, the dog barks in his watchdog voice, which is weird if my husband is down there.

So I head downstairs to investigage, and am greeted by a teary-eye Cakers who promptly tattles on daddy for going to the store for Mother's Day wrapping paper, without feeding her breakfast.And she's really hungry. So I pour her a bowl of Crackle and Pop. ::We were fresh out of Snap as it had been well spent earlier, on my last nerve.::

Back to bed. But no sleep. Three minutes after I fed the Cakers, I hear my husband come home. Knowing that they were were planning to serve me breakfast in bed,I was now a wide awake prisoner in my own bed. After the grueling night of the Anti-Sleep, this particular entrapment feels cruelly ironic.

Anyway. When the goods finally arrived I was a pleased and pleasant customer. After tasting a sample of each item, I told my husband and daughter that being the Mutha of this finely bedraggled family was truly reward enough. Although a little nerve pill cocktail would have been nice, I sidebar to husband. He laughs.

While the adoration and breakfast in bed was a sweet treat, the best so far this day has been having the last couple of hours to myself, to write this Mother Daze story. ::And yeah, I know I should sharing this day with loved ones, but for some reason, even though it's still early, I feel like I've already put in a full day.::

Happy Mother's Day everyone.
May all your nerve snaps be tight.

P.S. I apologize for all the grammos, particularly regarding the random mixing of tenses but I'm ree-ree tired and feeling a bit fuzzy about the head. Like a hangover, without the hang.

••• Saturday, May 06, 2006

Walking the Blog: Part II 

Dear Boob Walkers,
For the past five years or so, I've been a real nice lady. Whenever I approached a group of two or three of you walking abreast, and it was apparent that no one was going to step aside and make room for me to pass, I'd be forced to step into a gravelly ravine, or onto a lawn. One time, while moving out of the way, I caught my shoe on the edge of the sidewalk and almost landed on a freshly expressed lugie, dangling in the grass.

I always stepped aside because I am typically not one to sweat the small things. I did this because life is too short for dwelling on the petty, including your unfathomable, consistently boorish behavior. I did this because I am a sane, well-balanced person, with many things going for me. At least I was that person.

But, dear ladies, now that I've entered the Peri-Pausal zone, all bets are off. These days I'm feeling old and tired and that perhaps life ain't so short but is indeed, very long and draining and otherwise an old tired bitch. These days, I'm not feeling so well-balanced or that so many things are going my way. In fact, you might say that these days I'm feeling a little off my nut. Sweetly crazed. Peri-Menocidal. Even.

What does all this mean for you, dear ladies? It means I ain't moving no more. Why should I? When my husband and I go for a walk and another person approaches on the sidewalk, we wouldn't in a million sidewalk squares expect that person to move out of our way. Beside being rude, expecting the other person to move doesn't make any kind of sense. I like things to make sense.

I know that for years now I've been the objet du joke of your little club. Your poster child for Easy Sidewalk Prey. But no more. Starting today, I'm not moving. Neither am I going to be rude. There will be no dirty looks. No obscene rumblings. I'm going to say "Excuse me," with a smile, and stand. And wait. Until one of y'all steps aside.

And because being the training bra for The Boob Walkers Club has become my new mission in life, I've cleared my calendar. I've plenty of time. I'll stand as long as need be. ::Remember The Zax?::

Then, once you move and let me pass, you'll all look back at me. And I'll be looking back at you. And I'll give a little wave and a smile. Then later, back at the Boob Walkers clubhouse, ::You know where the Boobs hang out:: one of you might swear to the others that when looking back,you saw a strange red glow in my eye and heard a faint, unearthly howl in the near distance. Someone else might say they think they saw and heard the same thing. And a new poster child will be born. And within a few days, word of my new annointment will be out and I'll be parting The Boob Walkers like Moses and the Red Sea.

Just Sayin'. Dear ladies.

::This story went a bit long. The Best Stalking Story Ever will soon be available in the third installment of the Walking the Blog series.::

Knittin' Knuggets
Over the past week I have knit up three hats for the Get Connected charity. Here I am modelling one (pay no attention to the lady behind the eyebrow):

The yarn is Lion Brand Chunky Kool Wool and the pattern is Crazy Aunt Purl's Brangelina hat pattern.

I'd love to stay and chat, but it's a beautiful spring day, and I've got some sidewalk ass to crack. So I'll leave you with this...

...Two people walking a breast

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••• Thursday, May 04, 2006

ABC-A Long Time Comin' 

What the H?
For weeks now, I have been planning to do my husband.

For H.

Despite all my good'n wifely intentions, it just didn't work out, timewise. As in I ain't got none. And in matters such as doing your husband. For H. Timing is everything. Sorry honey. ::There's still X.::

H is for Headpiece

The last time I got married was in August of 1999. Two weeks before the big day, I decided it was time to find a headpiece. Because the wedding was going to be small and informal, and my wedding dress was actually a bridesmaid gown dressed up in white, I wasn't looking for anything fancy.

Before striking out on my mission from nog, I kind of had a vision of what I wanted: A wispy little circle of I-know-not-what, stuck with a few delicate silk flowers and maybe a couple of pearly things here and there.

Just a little something.

Yah right. I went to every bridal store, accessory boutique and maiden head shop within a 20 mile radius of my house. Nothing. They were either too big, too round or too butt tuckin' ugly. I even went to Fruit Basket and looked at little bird nests. Hey, don't judge. A little spray paint, seed pearls and glue gun...it could've happened. But it didn't.

Minus 10 days and counting, with temperatures hovering in the high 90's for days on end, and my home without air conditioning, I decided to get a pattern and whip up something on my sewing machine (as depicted above, except that most of it was sewn by hand).

The original pattern called for a bunch of hand made satin rose buds, to be bustled at the back. The rose buds were not only an integral part of the design, but they also covered the place where the circle was joined at the back. 14 hours and a whole lotta cussin',sweatin',bleedin',more sweatin' and one grossly mutated rosebud later, I went to plan C: Cry like a baby.

With less than a week to the big day, I returned to the fabric store to seek closure, defined as anything that would cover the gap in the back, so I could get me a little pre-marital headpeace of mind. I looked at silk flowers, molded rosebuds and weedy looking plastic sprays, complete with tiny birds and plastic, pearly egg-like projectiles. I was desperate, but not that much.

As I started to leave the store empty-handed, I could feel the tears of frustration welling up. But just before I hit the door, the cover shot of a craft magazine on a nearby rack caught my eye. It was a picture of a weedy looking wreathe. Kinda ugly, actually.

What caught my attention was the wild ribbon arrangement that was attached to the wreathe. It was a controlled riot of satin. And easy. So easy, I didn't even have to buy the magazine. The picture was instruction enough. All I needed was ribbon and a couple of tiny fabric roses for the tail and I was good to go. Once home, I had the whole thing tied up in about an hour.

And I haven't sewn a single thing since.

I started working on this post last night. Before I had the idea to show a wedding picture, I was in desperate need of a head model. The Cakers was in bed and the husband wasn't here to take a picture of me. After a couple of lame shots of the piece just lying on the couch, I had an evil thought or two. As follows:

I is for...
..."I see," said the blind hand.

I found that little eyeball on the sidewalk during a recent walk. I was very excited because 1) It's freaky cool and 2)I could use it for my "I" post. Snort. It wasn't until I took this picture that I realized I had the wrong vowel. But Eye'm flexible. Ewe?

Extra Starch, No Charge
One of my new assignments at work takes me to elementary schools around the district. When I pulled into the lot of this school this morning, I laughed out loud.

You'd think the parents would get a little steamed...