Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Dentally exhausted!

I have never been one of those "ooooh, look at my just polished teeth!" kind of dental patients. I'm more of a "Maybe I'll smile tomorrow when the swelling and bleeding have diminished" kind of gal. I also have the added bonus of TMJ, so the aftereffects of having someone rest their wrists on my lower jaw for part of my day, are pain that should be reserved for serious dental work. Sometimes I can overlook how much I dislike the dental hygienist's weapons of choice, and just try to enjoy the reclining chair. Not today! I was not looking forward to my appointment because it was with someone new (I believe I have mentioned my fear/dislike of change?).

The kids and I had finally found a hygienist we could almost look forward to seeing twice a year. No ouchies during, or after cleaning! I admit there were a couple of times that I came home and, upon inspection, might have realized that my problem areas were still not fabulous. However, the lack of pain kept me happy! She even seemed to accept the fact that I was not going to win any flossing awards...hell, I might not even enter the contest most years.

When I brought the kids for their cleanings two months ago, and asked when my appointment was, I was informed that I hadn't made one. Uh-oh! Reflecting on my flossing deficit and candy eating surplus, I decided it would be wise to take a "first available" appointment. (Yes, I do always wonder WHY those people have availability--same with some doctors--but, hey!)

She was a very nice person who certainly did what she could to accommodate a woman in a hurry who had a screaming sinus headache (no love for the reclining chair!). She was also very diligent in her efforts to eradicate my mouth of plaque. I cannot hold that against her now, but in the moment, considered trying to slice her index finger with a piece of dental floss. She asked me if there was usually a lot of bleeding when I had my cleanings. I really wish I had thought to scream "NO--Why? What's happening?", and pretended to pass out. Rats!

She emphasized the importance of flossing, asking if I tried. Really? We're going there? She did recognize my crowded teeth (I think her getting the floss stuck and having to pull it out by its end was a giveaway--ewwwwww, sorry!), and told the dentist I had trouble flossing. The dentist (who we've gone to for over seven years) just looked at us like "yeah, right--it's too difficult for her". She the dentist said something about mineral deposits...more likely to form on some people's teeth...genetic. In other words a "get out of flossing free" card, I figure. No need to comment on my fuzzy logic! Luckily the Advil hasn't worn off completely yet, and I think my jaw will be ok to finish up the Milk Way egg I've been working on this afternoon. What? Did I forget to mention that I didn't have any cavities?!?

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Coming home--an evil trifecta!

The kids and I just returned to our own lunacy from a five night getaway to the lunacy of others. I put out my "Welcome to my World" sign, as I feel compelled to do when unleashing our ten year old and our close-enough-to-a-teenager on others. (Ok, I require a bit of a disclaimer myself at times!) Our family lovingly welcomed us into their world as well!

When I am away from home for a bit, it eventually seems like I can mentally restore order to my home. During the four hour car ride this afternoon, I had pretty much sorted all of my clutter and was ready to make a list of the projects I wanted to embark upon in my free time. I was a little hazy on exactly where I was finding this free time, but I was certainly going to make the most of it. This spring would be different than the five that have come before...yes, THIS would be the year that I had it all under control without losing my mind. Gone would be the crazed look in my eye of Mays past.

We made excellent time (in part because I only asked about lavatory needs once, and when my daughter said she was hungry for lunch--I gave her a chocolate chip cookie and an apple). When we got off at our exit, I was a little heady with all of my plans and ambition. Two miles later, in the comfort of my own driveway, I nearly wept at the thought of unloading the car. The thin coat of dust, empty fridge, and lunatic dogs made it painfully obvious that I had been a tad delusional; but I was tempted to just start scrapbooking, or upload the 248 photos I had taken.

About five years ago, I realized I could finally cope fairly well with "the usual". However, when what I call a "plus one" occurs, all bets are off. Some examples of a "plus one" are: heat (I hate being hot!), headache, financial get the idea. This is not to say that I immediately crumble when another ball gets thrown into my delicate juggling routine. It just means there is a chance I will drop it all. I am sharing this information on my "plus one" theory, because I have to tell you that it was warm out when we got home....oh...and I was very tired...uh-oh!

I enlisted some help from the two passengers who had walked inside empty handed. (Seriously? Who's raising them?) We got everything in the house, and THAT is when I hit the trifecta!

1) All of the groceries from this trip's Trader Joe's run needed to be put away. (Maybe part of what I love about going to Trader Joe's there is that I don't unpack my typically non-perishable groceries. Shopping without unpacking? Bonus!)

2) There was a large duffle bag full of dirty laundry...ew! Maybe next time we will sort as we go and fill a bag of whites and one of darks to bring home. That would eliminate one step of the laundry process. Yes, I know I could've done laundry at my father and step-mothers, but I prefer to pretend I don't have any for the time I am away. I just act oblivious when my brother is looking for clean clothes--they aren't with my stuff! There were clothes we didn't wear, so those needed to be put away. I did all of the laundry in the house before we left, but I didn't put it all away. Yup, clean clothes on the kids' beds that also needed to be put away.

3) There was nothing in the refrigerator that could become dinner without a fairy godmother's wand! Because of my issue with guilt, or stupidity, I felt I should make dinner since my husband had fended for himself for five days. In the meantime, I had been treated to my father shopping AND cooking (and making a mess of the kitchen, but I am willing to overlook that). By the time I got to the store for emergency provisions, the "aren't you glad I'm back to feed you" meal was hot dogs. My husband only wanted one hot dog because he was going to have the one leftover piece of sausage from when he cooked for himself (it looked yummy)...and he had hot dogs the other day. I announced that I'd have gladly cooked something else, if it was here when I arrived! I tried to console myself with the boxed macaroni and cheese, canned beans, and salad that I paired with our meal. (By the way, the kids were absolutely delighted with our dinner--perhaps just with relief that I was finally feeding them!)

Now since I was pressed for time, I did the quick shop at the meat market (yup--hot dogs are what I left the meat market with...oxymoron perhaps). Now I can curl up in my own bed with visions of getting up in the morning to go grocery shopping...and I'll have to put those groceries away. Here's hoping tomorrow is just the daily double!

Monday, April 19, 2010

Not your average drugstore

We are visiting family in downstate New York. I thought the main trick was navigating their driving as a competitive sport...until yesterday. We were near the end of our three-hour-tour. (MANY quick outings here turn into what Gilligan and the other castaways THOUGHT they were heading for.) Then we decided to pick up our last few items at CVS (or as I will now refer to as Considerably Vile Shopping).

We walked in to find that there were no shopping carts. I never take that as a good sign as it means that there are so many shoppers that the carts are gone. Then I saw it...the eight people waiting in line to check out (and nobody had a cart)! I was in no mood, as it was my lunch time, and I could've stood a nap as well. My step-mother went to the back of the store to take her place (sixth in line) at the prescription counter. That seemed like the jackpot! I left my daughter and step-mother at the prescription counter and began my whirling dervish to gather what we needed in time to meet them at the register.

As I was coming around the corner with three two-liter bottles of soda in my arms, I saw that my daughter had been sent out of the queue. What? Wait? Why? As now I can see that the regular register line had grown so long that it almost met the pharmacy holding pen! Apparently my stepmother noticed that the man behind her might have been planning her death in the event that she even TRIED to put our purchases on that counter, and released our basket holder! I relocated her to the Space Mountain line, and wondered when they'd be bringing out the Disney velvet ropes.

I still had some shopping to do, so the 15 pounds of soda and I kept pacing. I wanted to pick up a belated birthday gift, and there was the flip board of gift cards---oooh, itunes! I had to go check with my stepmother to see if that was a good idea--kinda. Then on my way back I realized there were movie theater ones. Not being from the area, I wasn't sure if their theaters were Regal Entertainment (I know they were selling them in this area, but I was not convinced that there was much rhyme or reason to what was going on in this store). I ran back to the pharmacy to ask about the local movie theaters-no help, so I asked strangers (so sorry to interrupt your fascinating time waiting on line...geesh!). I didn't get a lot of help.

I have to add here that I couldn't just go with the itunes card because, along with Dunkin Donuts, it seems like something you get someone when you don't know what else to get them. In my ridiculous mind, I thought that because I knew our uncle liked to go to the movies, THAT gift card would look more thoughtful! I blame my insanity on that ever-growing line!

At one point I saw my daughter starting to step a little sideways in line, and also saw three vipers behind her ready to slither right into her spot! I had to shout for her to "Stay in line!"

Eventually, the weight of the soda got to me, and I joined my daughter in line. Make no mistake, I had not gotten everything we needed...I had just given up! It was also starting to look like my ten-year-old wouldn't be able to defend herself against the rest of the line.

The next moment of insanity came when I saw the store manager with a handful of twenty's, looking "for the woman he got change for a hundred for"!! What? Who walks away after giving someone a hundred dollar bill to make change? In a mosh pit of a check out line? Then I heard one of the cashiers ask him if she had white hair...his response "I don't really know what she looked like." I was about to approach him and say "Did she look like me? I think so. Thanks!" What an ultra-maroon!! (thanks Bugs) The woman came to, after seeing the slithering line had probably disoriented her, and claimed her money.

We made it out of the store, and now need to find someplace ELSE to go to get the items we forgot. I cannot spend fifteen more minutes of my vacation on a line that doesn't end with a water slide!!

Monday, April 12, 2010

I used to think that I wanted to compile a soundtrack that represented my life--you know, told the tale. I may not have realized exactly how ridiculous that sounded until I just reread that sentence. Well, let's try to move along anyway...

NOW, what I would like is a soundtrack that interacts with my daily life (yes, I know, that sounds much more realistic!). I would like there to be light jaunty tunes to let me know when things are moving along fine (sometimes I'm not sure). Perhaps there could be that horror movie music to warn me of danger...dun, dun, dunnnnnnnnnnn...PTO president one aisle over...Strep throat--call the pediatrician...Go back in the house--you forgot SOMETHING! How about some general slapstick music for when I minorly injure myself? I am sure a stubbed toe wouldn't hurt as bad. If something were to happen that was difficult for me to gauge a reaction to, I could just listen for whether there was an upbeat tempo (I'm Walkin' on Sunshine), or a tune far more sinister. Sure I'd still have my brooding days, but only if the music was right! The basic song list could be the same everyday with just minor adjustments for events out of the ordinary. In other words, my lunch/dinner making music could be the same daily, as could my getting showered/dressed music.

I am putting a bit too much thought into the logistics of my soundtrack, as I am sure there are no specifications or modifications that would make this dream a reality. I do realize that I could wear my ipod 24/7, but I wanted the voices (singing voices that is) in my head to be proactive...and omniscient perhaps!

So instead, I will settle for a personal cheerleader. Not just some random pom-pom waving smiler. There needs to be knowledge of the game. Tell me when to be on DE-fense!!! Tell me when to be aggressive...b-e aggressive..b-e a-g-g-r-e-s-s-i-v-e!!!

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Prepared to be disappointed

Does anything good really ever follow the lines "You look just like...", or "You remind me of..."? What is the appropriate response beyond "Yeah, so what?" When people tell me I look like Tina Fey, there are a few things that go through my mind:
1) That is disrespectful to Tina Fey.
2) Prepared to be disappointed. I am not that funny.
3) What if I tell you I am? (Then you might decide I don't really look like her at all.)
4) Um, thank you...if you are a fan of her looks. If you are merely a fan of her work, see #2.
5) Does that get me any free stuff?
6) Ugh! Does that mean I look like Sarah Palin?

It just seems like more of a conversation ender, than a starter. Are we then obliged to try to think of someone this stranger looks like?

Sometimes the person you supposedly look like is not a celebrity, but just some generic random stranger. This doesn't even allow you the chance to come to your own conclusion about any possible similarities. There are also the cases of mistaken identity, as an unfamiliar face is smiling broadly at you until you get close enough for them to realize their error. Well, now that person is most likely about to be disappointed! (And you are disappointed to find that you no longer warrant a smile.) I like when the tone is if I have NO idea who I am. "Do you have a twin sister?" I'm pretty sure I'd have thought to mention it if I did!

By the way, "You look familiar" is acceptable, as then there is a chance that you aren't talking to a stranger. Just to clarify, looking LIKE someone who you've already established you are not does not obligate you to further discussion.

I am equally unenthused when being told I remind someone of so-and-so. Here are my thought patterns then:"Oh really, does cousin Matilda find your conversation points dull as well?"; "Is that the person you were complaining about 2 minutes ago? I'm touched."

Maybe it's just me...afterall, I'm just me!

Saturday, April 3, 2010

The price for not paying the price for beauty...

***Due to the "graphic" nature of this post, please do not scroll down if you quease easily, or have a mouthful of coffee!***

OK, now that
that disclaimer is out of the way, we can proceed...

I was looking for some way to make use of myself, after an epic battle with some chocolate cut-out cookie dough (p.s. I won...I think). We are hosting Easter this year, and I am convinced that if I dust today, the bunnies and their friends will just wave themselves across the furniture by sunset, so I am waiting until tomorrow. That affords me some free time today, but I am reluctant to just relax. Instead, I will create silly tasks for myself, or add random items to the menu that I can prepare today. I remembered that there were bathrooms yet to be cleaned, and as I passed the mirror in my bathroom, I noticed a personal grooming challenge that needed to be taken on, pronto...waxing...blah!

The setting was ideal though, as I had the house to myself, eliminating any conversation about what I was doing. I was moving along, gaining confidence, and decided to do a little extra eyebrow work. I was not in my usual rush, so I could actually pay attention. OK, off I went (pretending to know what path eyebrows should take), easy does it...perfect! Just a little bit of wax along the top, so I applied the cloth strip, pressure, and rip, and OH MY GOD!!! WHY IS HALF OF MY EYEBROW ON THE CLOTH?!?!?!?! I was afraid to even look in the mirror after seeing this (entering "graphic" portion of the post, but I see no other way to convey this information)...

So many things running through my mind at once: "It's actually not as bad, as I expected"; "Should I use some wax to restick part of my eyebrow back on?"; "How the hell am I going to do the other one to match?"; "Laugh or cry?"

Well, of course I had to laugh, as crying would've made my eyes red and puffy...we wouldn't want THAT! I cursed my beautician friend for leaving the state for the holiday weekend. I thought of calling her cellphone, but didn't think her visit with relatives needed to be interrupted by my need for a tweezing tutorial. Instead, I called my aunt for moral support, and decided she would be today's expert on what's what for eyebrows in 2010. I suggested she tell me that "anything goes". She suggested I wear my glasses, but when I put them on I thought they suggested an unevenness not even related to the current problem.

I thought about people I know who pay to have their eyebrows done--some of them look a little surprised for my taste. Then I thought of the older women I've seen who pull out ALL of their eyebrows, and draw new ones in slightly lower/higher locations--yikes. Then there are those who pull out their own eyebrows as a nervous habit--and they don't use a mirror at all. Then I just laughed some more at the thought of being forty years old with beautifying skills limited to putting my daughter's hair into ponytails!

I decided this could be a moment for my daughter and I. (Um, a moment to share some glimpse of the misery she could have to look forward to...I don't know!) I asked her if my eyebrows looked any different--nope. So, I told her about unwanted hair growth and the the waxing process. Since she wasn't crying yet, I showed her the evidence of what had happened. My sweet princess smiled and asked which eyebrow. I told her it didn't matter if she couldn't tell, and then she said "Oh...I see which one!" Rats!

I decided I would be more aggravated if my husband were to point my mistake out unexpectedly, so I asked him if anything looked amiss. He kept looking from one side to the other, and began pointing out unrelated issues. "OK, we're done here buddy!"

The stinging and redness have subsided a little. I'd like to say that I've learned my lesson, but there is way too much wax left in that jar for me to pay a "professional" next time. Besides, I've seen burns that said "professionals" have left on people's faces, and I think my brow damage is less obvious.

I think I should go back to baking now--carrot cupcakes here I come...Happy Easter everyone!