24 June 2009

What’s in your Purse?

You can tell a lot about someone by what is in their purse. Not the planned contents like wallet, cell phone, and keys but the things that gather there along the way surreptitiously. Recently I was entering a government building here in our Nation’s Capital and as protocol slipped my bag into the x-ray machine. On the other side the guard retrieved it and rifled through it looking for something he found suspicious. After rummaging through plastic toads, receipts and coupons, barrettes and a plastic heart ring, a small bag of oyster crackers left over from a bowl of New England clam chowder, a ticket stub to the only Show I’ve been to in years, eye-drops and allergy meds, crayons and a super-ball, loose change and dinner mints, and more, the guard declared, “There’s too much shit in your purse”.

Yup. That pretty much sums it up. There is too much shit in my purse, proverbial and otherwise. My life is cluttered. Cluttered with a routine that is hard to keep up with and an activity schedule that leaves us spinning. Cluttered with stuff – toys that rarely get played with yet always seem to end up in the middle of the floor and clothes that keep arising from the good-will bag for a second chance. Cluttered with a To-do list that is becoming comical and no “honey”-to-do them. Cluttered with the things that interrupt any progress on the to-do list like: the dog jumping the fence and and all that it entails to spring him from the pound; the refrigerator/freezer deciding to quit on Memorial Day weekend and the subsequent struggle to get magic chef to honor their warranty; a rock cracking the windshield and negotiating insurance and replacement, etc, etc, etc. It’s enough to make a girl go mad! So, empty your purses Ladies!! Right now, dump them and simplify, simplify, simplify. We’ll feel better for it.

P.S. When I posted the guard’s comment on my facebook page I got such a resounding response from women friend’s who giggled in recognition, I just had to blog about this. One even suggested I start a Facebook Group. So, dump your purse, itemize and post your contents on “Too much Shit in your Purse” on Facebook Groups!

14 May 2009

Go, You Mudhens!

When I played softball in High School, most of our team had around a .600 batting average, so the old adage “you hit (or throw) like a girl” was actually a big compliment! We were good… and we had a lot of fun. Our coach was one of the player’s Dads, Mr McEvoy and would chuckle to himself as we danced around in the outfield to the tunes playing out of the dorm windows. That was a long time ago. Tonight I met up with the S.O.M.E. Mudhens, a local co-ed team that has lasted over the last few decades. I started playing with them just before their 10th year anniversary – a fun group with lots of good energy. Grad school took me away to NYC and when I moved back it took me a while to meet up with them again – this time for the 20th anniversary. Tom Taylor, the coach, used to joke with me that I only came back for the 10 year patch. Well, here I am again after having moved to the islands and come back and been rearing my child and ran into them again only to be recruited just before, you guessed it, the 30th anniversary! The team still has the same good energy, just a little less of it with age, but the same good spirit anyway. My glove was a bit moldy and my legs even rustier, but it was fun to be out in the field again as my 3 year old cheered me on from behind home plate. I even managed a few hits. My legs screamed in shock as I rounded the bases. I used to be frustrated when they stuck me in Right field (because I really could play and catching was my specialty), but tonight I was pretty comfortable there especially since the short fielder was pretty close at hand. He fielded a few as I watched on. But all in all, it was great to be back in the game – even though now I really do hit “like a girl” and as for throwing… I didn’t even get a chance to! But the adrenaline was flowing and the sounds of the bat hitting ball and the thrill of the plays was enough to make me go back for more. Thanks, You MudHens!

11 May 2009

Who's the Boss?

My current boss is the most challenging boss I have ever had. Although I once had a boss that actually threw temper tantrums and hurled office materials across the room, she was tame compared to my current boss. From the start to finish of the day she is non-stop demands. She’ll assign me a project and then change her mind completely and want me to work on something else entirely. She is constantly harassing me and moving up deadlines to suit her demanding needs. Even when I think I have exceeded her expectations, she will completely take my efforts for granted with very little gratitude or affirmation of my achievements. She gives me guilt trips when I take time off and complains if I take breaks. If I can’t meet her high expectations, watch out – her wrath ensues. But at the end of the day, she looks up at me with her big hazel eyes, gives me a hug and a kiss and says “I love you, Mommy” and it all seems worth it. Happy Mother’s Day to all the Moms out there with the most demanding bosses they’ve ever had!

02 May 2009

Our Spring Moose

I have decided that holiday decorations aren’t just for winter anymore! Really, does a moose go into hibernation in the Spring? Certainly not. I did get around to finally taking down the wreaths and lights, but I just couldn’t bring myself to take down the moose. Besides, my dog has befriended her. I still never understand the folks who get their holiday decorations up too early and then take them down the week after Christmas! I have always thought of decorations as a celebration of Winter – they go up after Thanksgiving and stay up until the last snow. Until now. Now I’ve decided to let them linger even longer. My mantel is still adorned with Nutcrackers and holiday cards. My 3 year old protested the removal of her newest heroes after seeing the ballet and falling in love with the sugar plum fairy scene. And besides, how many times do I get pictures of all the people we love and think about throughout the year – if you sent me a photo, chances are it is still on my mantle and we are still enjoying it. Maybe we’ll just wait and take them down one by one next year when we get their updated replacements!

19 April 2009

Who's on First?

Today we spent the evening at the emergency room, which I realized too late was more for my child’s amusement than was medically necessary. Fortunately, it was a waste of time and money. Anyway, when we got home she wanted to play “Doctor” so she handed me a green plastic work glove and said “Mommy, you be the Doctor”. I said “Ok” and donned the glove.

She was the patient (and the Director) and went to the waiting room to “exercise” until I called her. (Don’t ask me why, it’s her show…).
So, I called her and began the same inquiry you hear at the Doctor’s office or ER:

Doctor (Mommy): So, what brings you here today?

Patient (3 yr old): The bus.

Mommy (Doctor), completely breaking character: Laughs hysterically, then tries to rein herself in and resume her role….: “Ok, so why did you take the bus here today?”

Impatient Patient: (she replies as if that was a silly question) “Because I DON’T have a CAR!”

I felt like I was in a vaudeville routine! I love being a Mommy!

08 April 2009

The Motherhood Tri-athalon

Motherhood is like running a Tri-athalon – every day. An abundance of energy exudes from little bodies like there is not enough body mass to actually soak it up. Mommy’s larger than before body, on the other hand soaks it up quite readily until it is feeling quite parched for more. Yet the kids keep on running and are ready for the next event!

Today my 3 year old and I ran a marathon of activities. We started in the morning with a drive to Haines Point to enjoy the cherry blossoms with a bunch of Moms and about a dozen kids. We did Arts and Crafts, ran, flew a kite (or the kite flew itself – it was quite windy), romped around on the playground, played with the dog, and romped and ran some more. A few hours later, it seemed a good time to go home for a nap (more for Mommy than child). But, she had other plans. She wanted to stop off at the Horse Stables. “Ok, Just for a few minutes”, Mommy said. We pulled in and went to visit the horses.

It was over 3 hours later when we emerged from horse patting, piggy-back riding, exploring the trails with our big red dog, collecting rocks for our rock garden, exploring the nature center’s turtles (where we ran into a neighbor and friend to play with for the following activities), dancing on the stage, making raccoon footprints in the sand, gazing at bees in the indoor hive, examining a leaf in a microscope, gazing at stars in the planetarium, and yet another trip to pet the horses. Only then did I finally convince my daughter to return to the car to head home for dinner. I strapped her in her car seat and gave her a snack for the ride home. On the lap around the car from her door to mine, I took a deep breath and enjoyed the moment of silence... Ahhhhh. As I got back in the car and put the key in the ignition I heard my daughter ask from the back seat, “Mommy, what are we going to do today?”

28 February 2009

Boosting Immunity Soup

This link provides a great and simple recipe for boosting immunity as winter seems to trudge on....

My winter boosting soup might include: A good night (and days!) sleep; laying on the beach for a week; a hike in the woods; lots of water and good healthy food!

Here's what Dr. Mao recommends:


08 February 2009

Baby Bundle (of anxiety?)

What’s the most anxiety-provoking thing you’ve ever done?
Well, if you’ve ever had a child then say no more. That’s your answer.
You spend the first days in complete awe that you made this little being and then awe is replaced by trying to figure out how to take care of this tiny, fragile life-altering bundle. It is no wonder parenting is fraught with anxiety! Basically, you are obsessed with what you need to do to keep them alive and help them thrive. Just when you have it down and are into a rhythm, then the next stage comes and you need to figure out what to do next. Even though all they do is eat, sleep, poop and cry, parents can spend hours obsessing on all of the details that entails. Breastmilk or formula, co-sleep or crib, cloth or disposable diapers, cry-it-out or feed on demand? The issues to consider for even the most basic needs can be quite overwhelming. So after researching your options and making those agonizing decisions, it is no surprise that we cling so close to them. After all, if someone else has chosen a different path that they think is right does that somehow make our decision less right? It is just far too threatening to consider. So we defend our decisions in the hopes that doing so will somehow make our child or our parenting okay. But in actuality, whatever choice that you have made, if it works for you and your baby even though it may not have worked for your neighbor – that’s Okay. There are so many options and choosing the right one for you takes not just research but some introspection about what your lifestyle is and what you would like it to be. Ultimately, the child is your litmus test and if the baby is happy then you are probably doing just fine. If you are comfortable with your choice and it works for you then that will most likely translate to a happy household and child. So give yourself a break (and your neighbor) and don’t over-analyze it – just take a bit of time to look inside yourself and ask your gut what’s right for you. Then smile and hug your child, knowing you made your own choice for reasons that are right for you.