Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Some relief from the sweaty random

It's that time, or should I say, DAY again!
Thanks for hosting, Stacy, and for giving us all a neat little loot bag to put our random thoughts in.

Yesterday morning was finally the moment I got to yell "Quick! Everybody get outside! It's under 70 degrees!" That was later followed by "Go dance in the rain!" Today we have been offered a potpourri (or more like a random linty candy from the bottom of Mother Nature's purse) kind of weather. I am doing my
energy efficient part by trying not to turn the air conditioning on, as we strive to be in the top five next month. The extra freezer has been turned off, so yes, we roasted that defrosted turkey on a 90 degree day over the weekend.

During the heat wave last week, I found myself at one of my cleaning jobs, in a house without any air conditioning. I am not saying that everyone has to have fabulous frosty cooling devices for their homes, but I am saying that no household chores should be done in homes without. Now I have never spoken before of how someone at this particular house just throws used tissues on the floor when a head cold comes to visit, or how cake decorating tips and bags were left out on the counter for four days awaiting my arrival to clean them. However, the heat coupled with this sight sent me over the edge. There were over 100 hair things of various shapes and sizes all over the bedroom floor (yes, I know how many there were because I didn't want to exaggerate during the retelling of the tale). Look at the level of shame poor dolly (she is too hot to get dressed) is expressing as she tries to wave me away...
...or perhaps she was just pointing me to the bathroom where I found a bathtub full of used water...ew! (That is actually the point when I went over the edge.)

We went to the Syracuse Chiefs (local minor league) baseball game last week. We found ourselves less than ten seats away from Billy Baldwin, and we had no decent camera. I could've sent one of my kids over to sit with him like that woman in the shredded back black t-shirt did. I wonder if Billy believed this six year old munchkin was a fan on her own. Part of the reason I didn't send my kids, or myself, over was that I didn't think "Hey! I love your brother Alec!" was a decent opening line...and I honestly didn't have any thoughts on Billy himself. I can't just bother someone because he or she is famous.

I know pink lawn flamingos take a lot of flack, but this display makes them look absolutely beautiful. Do you like the added feature of the side of the toilet tank being blown out? Maybe that is so it can't take on water in a storm. The plants are really classing it up though.

The most exciting random piece of information I have to share is the birth of my cousin and his wife's baby! Congratulations and welcome Baby Russell! He joins a much hairier big brother named Baxter, who blogs about being a Tibetan Terrier.

Babies fascinate me overall, but their little fingers? I could stare all day!

These delicious little goodies were tucked away safely in the freezer waiting for baby to arrive. His mommy is "Jesus in the kitchen" I have heard my own son say. She also has a culinary blog, but I don't expect that one to be updated too frequently for awhile, so enjoy the past posts, as they are awesome!

By the way, a quick peek into Baby Rusty's room confirmed any suspicions about the mustache revolution having arrived...oh, it's here...or at least THERE!

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Sorry excuse for an excuse

I walked in from work at 10:40 last night. I am not sure what could've been going on in my house that would've seemed delightful, but I knew what I had stumbled upon was not even close. I thought the kids were in bed, and then saw the daughter standing at the kitchen sink on the verge of making, or cleaning up, a mess of some sort. The son came out of the shower and immediately realized he was missing an electronic device, and needed a go outside to look for it. (Perturbed alert level at yellow.) Flashlights were not in their usual locations, and the one I found had no batteries (level-orange).

As I wandered through the kitchen, I stopped at the table to steady myself from the buzzing of activity going on (by everyone, except the husband who was sitting on the couch watching tv). It was then that I noticed the bag full of stuff on my chair. There were two soaking wet towels and three wet bathing suits (none of which were mine) from the pool party I had left them at when I went to work, several hours earlier, in the bag. (LEVEL - RED folks, she is going to blow!) I started ranting to nobody in particular, or directly to that guy on the couch, who's to say. I caught a quick glimpse of the couchmaster with that look of "maybe if I am quiet, she won't see me" on his face.

The son was still on his search and rescue mission and the daughter had gone to shower as the hour closed in on 11:00 p.m. I started to process the evening's events. They had returned home by 8:00, and then the kids had gone next door to watch a movie that was about two hours long. I decided this was ample alone time for my husband to have taken any obvious measures to prevent crimson terror levels, so I went back to request an explanation for the soggy bag of their stuff. (I must state here that it is not necessarily the case that I think HE should've dealt with the bag, but he coulda shoulda made sure somebody did!)

Now we have heard him give some shoddy explanations for past behavior regarding things like plungers, bargain shopping,and laundry. Suffice to say, he did not disappoint, as this in the conversation that followed:

me: Why would you not deal with this bag of wet things?

couch: Well I wasn't sure what you wanted done with them?

me: What?

couch: I didn't know.

me: But you would have to agree that they do not belong in the bag on this chair?

couch: But I didn't know if you wanted them upstairs, or down here in the laundry room.

me: Um, I wouldn't have cared which. How do you act like you've never seen where such items go? You could've asked the kids...for crying out loud!

couch: (silence)

Clearly this was not a battle worth fighting...for the guy on the couch, who we both knew had lost.

Friday, July 22, 2011

I'm melting...what a world

I feel like the anti-wicked witch (yeah I suppose that is a bit of a relief) because I would revel in having a bucket of water dumped on me right about now! The heat index was 109 here yesterday mid-day. That is not to say that I know what that means. Windchill=temp+wind. I am not sure what gets added to the dastardly potion that made me feel like a piece of bacon walking down the street yesterday. I'll google it later, so that at least I will have learned something from the terrible experience.

This little guy was using WAY too much energy out in the heat the other day...

I had to relax a bit after watching him (well, there was that jog to get the camera too). Speaking of relaxing, I have the house to myself for at least fifteen more minutes this morning...what to do? I think I'll go do some more blog hopping and soak up the silence, as I do believe there will be five extra kiddoes here this who will want cookies...blogging and baking...2 of my faves!

Stalk Hop Friday w Mrs. Marine

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Don't sweat the random

Of course Mother Nature can't seem to keep her hot flashes to herself these days, so she must subject an entire country to endure the suffering with her. I almost had myself convinced that I could spend more than five minutes outside today, then quickly realized that was because I had not spent more than five minutes outside at one time. Sure, there is a slight breeze that has the same freshness factor as walking over the subway grates in Manhattan...ooooooh, steamy! The forecast is calling for 100 on Thursday with a chance of thunderstorms. Really? Well, there go my big sweaty picnic plans...darn!

Stacy is still doing her part to give us a place to throw our random, sweat-dripped thoughts. Click on the link to read what heat induced musings other folks are blogging about.


I am never quite sure if I have chosen the appropriate temperature setting for the air conditioner. It's not like we are running around the house in sweats to keep warm, but I occasionally feel a need to ponder whether I am being energy smart (in a realistic way, as in, the A/C is staying ON). Well, I do not need to wonder anymore! Our home energy report came again this month from the power company, and while we slipped four places from last month, we are still ranked #13 out of 100 neighbors. Sure, the kids want to know which four neighbors stepped up their games to surpass us in efficiency, but I have decided that I am content, for now, with our standings. My acceptance of the slide may have something to do with the fact that I realized there was no actual reward for coming in first place, beyond the paper they are wasting to send me my kudos. When I first read the line "You used 26% less energy than your neighbors", I thought somehow the power company saw me for the lazy slug I can be. They also send the letter to the other 99 folks to let them know how they are doing. Let's just say, we know people who are pushing that bar graph mighty far to the right.

Remember that twig I received back in May? Well check it out! Who'd have thought it was actually going to grow? I was skeptical, I admit. I am anxious to see what it does next!

Here is a product I was lucky enough to use today...heavy duty mayonnaise. Now we were just putting it in ginormous quantities of macaroni salad, but with it being heavy duty and all, I pondered its other uses. Spackle? Craft glue? Car wax?
I have some containers of food thawing for dinner tonight. I am not 100% positive what they hold. Based on the color, I am hoping for tomato sauce. One of the ice blocks does show signs of having some meatballs present. I just hope that the contents can be divided amongst four people in a way that looks somewhat intentional. It all started with a loaf of free bread I brought home, accompanied by a lack of interest in going to the store. If I end up having to eat just the loaf of bread, I have decided I am ok with that. I wanted to unplug the freezer in our basement since there is not much in it (and I might really want to rank higher with the energy lords next month), but there is a turkey in it that I don't think I can fit elsewhere, nor do I think this week has a Thanksgiving dinner vibe about it.

I wish that little shelfari thing over there on the left would change the books showing once and awhile. I say this because I have actually read and added several books, not because I am trying to use smoke and mirrors to make you think I am a more avid reader. There probably is a way to switch it up, but whenever I go to the site to try, I just feel technologically disabled. I should go ask my eleven year old to work it out for me!

Grab some popsicles and try to enjoy the wave!

Friday, July 15, 2011

Me time

I was pretty convinced that I needed some alone time this evening. Sort of like a time out. I might've behaved poorly at the vet's office today (and even moreso on the phone with him afterwards). My daughter pointed and chuckled at the crumpled up bill on the counter. That is a tale for another time, and right now I am trying to find my happy place that is nowhere near the land where I am always the bitch. Some alone time would definitely do the trick...except it's so lonely. Vacuuming and dusting just weren't giving me any sort of enchanted enlightened feeling, so here I am. I thought I would share a conversation that took place in our van yesterday afternoon...

[Setting the stage...general silliness going on]

me (to 14): What is wrong with you?

14: What IS wrong with me? Well...

me: That you are 14 and still addicted to Pokemon cards? (which he was fidgeting with at the time)

14: Well, it all started when I was born...

me: ...with a big old hematoma on your head.

14: Hematoma? What's that?

me: Like a big bruise. You had such a conehead, and a big scab on the hematoma.

14: Ew! Great.

me: Well, we brought you home anyway.

14: So your womb was like a razor? I hope you got that fixed.

(slight pause, as nobody really knew where to go or how involved to get with the birthing process)

11 from the backseat: Well, I didn't have one!

I can honestly say that I still do not fully understand the condition of that boy's head after delivery, nor am I certain that I want to! There was no razor extraction performed before child number two, just in case you were wondering.

14 just called to see if he could extend his trip with his friends' family overnight, and I said "yes"...because saying "I really like to be able to watch you sleep for five seconds every night" didn't seem like a decent reason to say "no".

Thursday, July 14, 2011


Have you ever had one of those days when you feel like you are wound so tight, yet know you could completely unravel in an instant? You've tried to disperse the weight of whatever has you twitting so that your shoulders can relax a bit, as opposed to being hunched somewhere up around your earlobes? You've tried to rationalize why certain things bother you, and while you may come up with a few answers, the reality is that you feel more foolish for realizing that you are carrying baggage over twenty years old? Terribly out of style, as well as awkward and heavy. Did you ever put on your big girl undies and decide to just head outside to shoot hoops, in an attempt to get over yourself? How about turning at just the wrong moment, and catching the basketball in the face...and having THAT become the moment you can't keep it together anymore? Then you try to stifle the tears, so that the child who nailed you with the ball doesn't have to feel like they are the sole cause of the day's pain. Just a quick, head slightly tilted, walk to the bathroom where you get to cry your eyes out until you feel a little better-ready to gather up your thread again. Oh, you haven't had one of those days? Maybe it's just me...

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

No vacation from random!

I set the bar pretty low for myself today, as when I checked the weather report, it made mention of the temperature reaching 96. To avoid the risk of bursting into flames, I assured the children that we would not stray beyond fifty feet of air conditioned spaces. I am now sitting in front of the computer, with every ounce of motivation completely gone from my body. I decided to make sure that tomorrow's temperatures were still predicted to be dabbling below 80, when I saw that today's high is now listed as 86. I feel so lame now, as if I should've made a more ambitious plan. I was settling in nicely to my threat of combustion concerns keeping me from any attempts to expend energy. Now I suppose I should put another load of laundry in, as the 48% humidity doesn't even seem like enough to fall back on.

Stacy is rallying the rebels once again this Tuesday to get our random thoughts together. She also has some unbloggables that she is not blogging about that are keeping me glued to my seat (as if I needed one more reason to stay still). Click on the link and see what other random things folks are airing out!


Last week someone commented to me that they were "out of shape too". Uh-oh, that "too" meant in addition to me. I mean, it was no secret to me that I wasn't exercising or eating as well as I could, but I guess I hadn't taken it to the next level of realizing that I was actually out of shape. I guess I thought that the beach I had just run up (much faster in my imagination) was steep enough and far enough away from our chairs to warrant being a bit out of breath. My bad...really bad. We walked (and sweat) enough in Boston for it to count as exercise. Upon returning home, of course, I had to look at the weather forecast before putting any jogging plans in motion. Too hot yesterday and today, as I have already mentioned. Right now I am burning off all sorts of energy resisting the temptation to put the frozen chocolate chip cookie dough balls I put aside on reserve into the oven (or to pop them in my mouth frozen).

Moving on...some random vacation sightings...

I was absolutely, positively rooting for the crab...he lost.

Nothing rocks like the Pilgrim Pod!

Where was I when the mustache revolution came? We saw everything from 'stache-shaped fried egg corrals, to mood mustaches, to dog chew toy Kong-like mustaches, to these...

OK, I sort of understand the sign as I am sitting here at my desk, but at 55 miles per hour, I might've swerved and hit it. Luckily we were on foot.

I don't know exactly what to say about this one...or what accent to use when I think of something (other than it being in Hahvad Yahd).

Stay cool!

Monday, July 11, 2011

Paradise or punishment?

I love books! I love everything about them, and it makes me truly happy to be surrounded by their inviting pages. It stands to reason that I also love book a point. That point being when I have to make my way to the exit. Rarely, if ever, has there been a time when I left a book store with "all I wanted"...because I always want MORE! It is also worth mentioning that I will almost never pay full price for a book, and almost never buy hardcovers.

This is what I was faced with on our recent weekend jaunt to Boston, when we ducked into the nearest place to find a restroom. The Coop at Harvard Square? Are you kidding? The front door is at the end of that magical row of bestsellers, all the way across the store from the stairs!
The walk up to the THIRD FLOOR to get my daughter to the necessary destination was bad enough, but the walk down, with less focus, was even worse news. The husband and son were waiting outside for us, so I dragged myself along. We quickly decided to take a stroll through Hahvad Yahd (some random thoughts on that next time).Of course the gates we eventually passed thru, on our road to nowhere in particular, put us right in front of a different book!

As a coping mechanism for myself when it comes to having to leave some books behind, I have started to keep track of things that look appealing in a little book in my purse. There are currently ten books in my queue on the shelf at home, so even I can accept the fact that the pile doesn't need to be any higher. The reason my library has gotten so large is that a friend turned me on to the local used book stores. He mentioned the notion with thoughts of me getting some money for a few boxes of books I had convinced myself to part with. He did not realize what the trade in implications might be for me. I refuse to acknowledge that there is any fuzzy logic with me getting twice as much credit for the box of books as I would get in that I can then use to purchase books that are marked less than half price. Nirvana? Almost!

Back to Bahston...we were traveling light and I had left my mamma bag at the hotel, so I had no pen nor paper for my therapeutic list. Then I realized that I did have a camera around my neck, so I decided I would try a different documentation tool. I can almost guarantee you that I would not have remembered a single one of these titles once I got around to trying to find them again. I thought I would share them here just in case you wanted to send me a little gift. Seriously, I thought perhaps if you loved or seriously disliked any of these titles, you could let me know and I would adjust their standings in my little book of lists accordingly.

Later, after checking out at the Coop (we had to return for the same reason as earleir in the afternoon) with the one purchase I decided to allow myself (The Happiness Project...softcover AND 30% off!), my daughter and I saw this book, flour, again. I picked it up only to find it was recipes from a Boston bakery. I told my daughter I could've bought that under the guise of souvenir, as opposed to just buying another book. She gave me a sweet smile and guided me out of the store. (That 20% off sticker is sticking its tongue out at me now!) Season to Taste was actually the one I was trying to document!

OK, anything here look familiar, as I don't know what I was trying to capture?!?! Oh, and there is one that I didn't photograph...13 things...or 13 questions...anybody? I thought it was in this group, but I might've lost my mind (and family) by then! (I do know it was not William and Kate or Glee.)

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Oh, it's Tuesday?

I am on vacation time here in Cape Cod, so the actual day of the week was a bit of news to me. I find myself longing for the days when the kids were wiped out enough to turn in before 9:00 so that I could feel like I had time to unwind before 10:00 rolled around. Maybe I just wish that I could lose that feeling of being compelled to tuck them in, and I could be the one hitting my pillow at 9:00. Who am I kidding? I will tuck those people in even if they are throwing objects more offensive than stuffed lovies at me! Moving on...

Since Stacy has been kind enough to host Random Tuesdays from her vacation in Iowa, the least I can do is shake some random sand out of my suit and join the party. Click on the link to see what other folks have been sharing today.


I have always wished for a more bathing suit appropraite body, and have also pretended that I have no idea what steps I could take to achieve one (that don't involve chocolate chip the ones that just came out of the oven...see?). I have gone the path of least resistance and now just tell myself that I won't be the worst sight on the beach. The overall theme this year seems to be the two piece bathing suit...bikini style, as opposed to the frock with swim mini I wear. I both applaud the confidence some of these women have that they have found the most flattering beachwear, and am disappointed that I have to see them wear it. Seriously though, the dudes have their own spandex basket of issues.

Tai chi anyone? I suppose it was my responsibility to make sure my kids didn't go careening into this guys with their boogie boards, so why was I secretly hoping they'd take him right out?!

Then he decided to take a run with his "C is for Crack" shorty suit. I know, it's a huge beach, but is 11:00 a.m. really the time for serenity?

I spent a bit of time consulting with my brother as to whether this guy had undies built into his super shorty shorts, or if that was his bright white fanny flapping at us. I might as well mention the chin strap holding his hat on...hard core!

I was not completely convinced that this mom was really doing much to help her daughter get that wet suit on. Instead, I thought maybe the efforts were more likely to cost at least one of them a bathing suit item.

For anyone on the verge of dehydration, who didn't pack a water bottle, I am sure they were relieved by this "Express" line.

I didn't bring my camera today, so my boogie boarding prowess was not captured (phew). Unfortunately, I saw the most sunburnt woman EVER! Her burn lines were different from today's suit, so I knew she was a vacationer who was not about to sacrifice a day at the beach because of some silly old first-degree burns. Maybe she won't be there tomorrow when the burns are second-degree. Bright angry red, verging on magenta...ouch!

Moving outside, where I am always green with envy when we are here, there are hydrangeas growing like crazy. Most of them around town are a beautiful cornflower blue, but I do love these lace top ones too!

Ooh, also happening outside were these fabulous pizzas on the grill. I don't see a reason for me to not eat these every day. It seems like whatever I would ordinarily cook might be yummier like this! (And I am fairly certain that the addition of that much dough into my life each day would fit right in with my toning regime.)

Well, it is now officially past my bedtime, but I was having trouble with the AV equipment. I need to be bright and perky in the morning for my son's birthday (as I am sure perky doesn't even begin to describe what mood he's working on!). He is turning 14...FOURTEEN? I just accepted the fact that he was thirteen about 5 weeks ago!

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Latest reason to celebrate

Well I learned a lesson this week that I am fairly certain should've already been planted in my brain somewhere. Rest assured I will file it in a more accessible spot now. In another moment of my glamorous life as a house cleaner, I managed to get hit in the head with a vacuum cleaner. I didn't realize how many stairs from the top I had cleaned when the sucking monster must've decided to lunge down upon me. The noise of the appliance itself prevented me from hearing any warning signals of the impending attack. One second I was eradicating someone's basement stairs of kitty litter, and the next I was almost sent down the remaining stairs to meet certain doom. It hurt. That might've gone without saying, but I didn't want you to think I had been grazed by a lightweight Oreck. Please make a mental note, that if you do find yourself in a situation where you are forced to vacuum stairs, put the giant sucking machine at the bottom of the staircase. You're welcome!

The best I can do at moments like these is to consider the blogging possibilities, or even responsibilities. There is a chance that you may find the tale amusing (because it wasn't you) and that is fine. It also might be my duty to pass on this public service message about the potential perils and precautions involved with housework.

My efforts were recognized this week by Kathy at
The Midlife Woman. Sashay on over to her blog to weigh in on the topic of midlife redheads wearing purple shades (absolutely), and to see that I made it on her list! I was so excited, and had my own brief Sally Field "they really like me!" moment. I was quickly whisked back to reality by the looks on my children's faces suggesting that they had no intention of breaking out the pom-poms and cheer squad for me. I reminded them that I cheerlead for them, on a daily basis...What? That's in my job description? Oh yeah, that's right! So I would like to give a big thank you to Kathy for making me feel like someone was rooting for me out here in the made my day!

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