You know you're in the Mother-Hood when...

You Know You're in the MotherHood When...

You've sniffed a spot on your shirt and been able to determine the origin of said spot with CSI efficiency.

You let someone see you basically naked because he said he was an anesthesiologist.

It's a good day if you actually had time to shower, without interruptions or an audience of any kind.

Your meal plan has consisted of eating whatever mac and cheese is left in the pot after you've served it to the kids.

A drawing of you with a head the size of a watermelon is the prettiest picture you've ever seen.

Everyone but you being asleep counts as "alone time."

You feel a sense of accomplishment if you read an entire article in People magazine in one sitting.

You can name 3 out of 5 Backyardigans - you know you can.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

'Tis the Season

Okay. I am playing the no fair card. Seriously.
Go with me on this. To quote Elle Woods in Legally Blonde, "I have a point, I promise."
Big events seem to correspond with a "season."
For instance, hunting season. Mostly men partake of this yearly ritual of buying a bunch of crap that makes them feel like GI Joe or a pioneer or whatever. Then they layer on camoflague and hide out in the woods to shoot "wild animals" - or animals that are so used to seeing people that they aren't concerned enough to run away from the beer drinkers in the bushes.
They have boots, pants with a thousand pockets, vests, jackets, hats - they are covered from head to toe in gear. That's a manly thing to do. Or so I've been told.
Football season. It's fall, it's chilly, we layer our favorite team t-shirts and sweatshirts and hats while we eat chili dogs and nachos and drink beer. Then it gets really cold and we add the parkas and the team colored scarves and gloves, well, except for those crazy people that go shirtless with the team logo painted on their chest who get treated for hypothermia after the game.
The Holiday season. Festive sweaters, warm coats and eating, eating, eating.
Then a few weeks go by and what is it? "Swimsuit season." Really? A whole season?
People start talking about it right after the holidays, as if to tell you, "we know you just had a wonderful time celebrating with family, but the clock's running, you better put down the homemade cookies and pick up the celery stick, because in a few months, you'll be walking around basically naked."
Why do the "guy" seasons require layers and layers of clothing and "swimsuit" season is on us? You know why? Because guys can wear their trunks (for the love of God, don't wear anything speedo-ish) and get all tan and look good, well passable, even if they aren't exactly Matthew McConaughey.
Now, the women.
I am only talking about GROWN women. Not teenagers. They make their own fashion mistakes all the time and most of them are just starting to feel bad about their bodies (it's what women do, unfortunately) and these girls don't realize they look amazing. I don't remember wearing a two piece as a teenager, because I didn't think I could pull it off - if I had my teenage body now, I'd be wearing a two piece EVERYWHERE!
Now ladies, I am not judging (much) I am just observing. There are few things more entertaining than people watching. At the pool there is the added bonus of hiding behind your sunglasses so people can't tell you are judging, er, observing them.
I'd like to present the following as evidence, your honor.

The Granny-Jock
This is the "more mature" lady at the pool in the modest one piece, swim skirt optional, usually with a swim cap of some sort. She waits for that "adult swim" whistle and starts her laps while sneering at those kids who are taking their time getting out of the pool. She does not want to be splashed or bumped into with swim noodles while switching up her mall walking routine by hitting the pool. Hey, you gotta respect a woman at least twice your age who can kick your ass swimming laps.

The Gym Junkie
This is the woman who either doesn't have kids or her kids are old enough that she is able to live at the gym and visit home enough to eat her 1200 calories just in time to get her nails done after she goes tanning. Face it. Her body rocks. I want to cry plastic surgery, but basically she's just way more motivated then me. Or, her body issues are way worse than mine and she works out as much as I like to drink wine with friends.

The Anti-UV-er
Why does this person come to the pool? They have so much sunblock on, that they look like a film of Elmer's Glue has dried on their skin. Their sun hat could double as a helicopter landing pad and they are sitting in the shade. They read and sit and don't get in the water, because then they'd have to open up another tub of SPF 80 and reapply. I'm all for protecting your skin, but, unless you're playing a vampire in the next Twilight film, I say let a little light in!

The Paris Hilton bathing suit on the not-so-much Paris Hilton body
I am SO the first one to applaud women for being okay with their bodies. We all should take a page from those womens' books. I do have a problem with women who have what I like to call "Mariah Carey Syndrome." When women who are well over 35-40 shop in the Juniors department. The minis and the bejewled halters and everything else that screams "Forever 21" on a 40+ year old woman just looks wrong. There are too many options for women to look sexy and feel good about themselves to succumb to the Mariah Syndrome. Look at Demi Moore, Halle Berry, Julia Roberts - they are all gorgeous and I can't recall a tabloid that showed them wearing the same outfit at Mariah*, ever.

*I am sure Mariah is a very nice person. I'm sure her and her future daughters will love sharing each others' clothes - even when she is pushing 60.

The New Mom
She can be seen holding onto a baby floatie in the pool. Her child has three layers of sun block, a hat, and a floating fort with a visor - there's no sun in there, so that baby is probably getting a little chilly, actually. I think back to when my kids were that little and remember how fun it was to just watch them discover the water. I didn't feel that great in my bathing suit (wait, I still don't) so I totally know how she feels. Until she gets out of the pool to reveal she's one of those alien freaks who had a baby recently and has no stretch marks, no muffin top - no nothing! Damn her. Her post-baby bod is kind of making me want to eat my Pringles right in front of her.

Then of course, you have the moms who are totally comfortable with their bodies. They may not be in perfect shape, but they are rockin' the cute suits. I always want to ask them where they find those suits. And then ask them where they find the confidence to strut their stuff. Never had it. Not even when I should've had it. What a cruel joke that is!
So I sit in my suit that doesn't totally suck and think about the fact that as I look around, envious of many of the bodies around me - someone else is looking around the pool from behind their sunglasses, their eyes pause on me for a moment, and they are jealous of what I have...

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Negativity can be fun, try it, you might like it

Being negative is fun sometimes. I'll be the first to jump on that train. Who hasn't critiqued someone else's unfortunate outfit choice or uniquely horrendous driving skills? Sometimes a gal's just gotta vent, or else the elastic in our granny panties will blow like Old Faithful.
Recently, I have had an ongoing, annoying experience with a major retail chain that shall remain nameless. We will call it, Schmall Mart. I had ordered an item from those Do-It-Yourself kiosk photo machines and was attempting to pick up said item (after receiving a call from Schmall Mart telling me it had arrived.) First attempt, I arrived to the photo department only to be met with hand written signs posted everywhere that the photo lab was closed... sorry for the inconvenience. It took every fiber of my being (and those pesky security cameras) not to go open the drawer behind the counter to retrieve my purchase. I mean, I ordered it all by myself, with no assistance from a Schmall Mart employee, why couldn't I pick it up all by myself? Alas, my better judgment prevailed and I left empty handed, except of course, for what I bought as I walked through the store on the way to the photo lab.
Round two. I arrive at the photo department to, once again, find it lacking... oh what's that called? Oh yeah, STAFF. I am standing there, trying to decide if the pre-pubescent looking teenager working in the camera department or the scowling employee near the tv's would be the right person to ask for assistance. Really all I need is to borrow someone's blue vest so I can pop behind the counter and open that damn drawer! It's right about then when the one of the ladies that had been working on those crazy kiosks next to me stepped around the counter and instantly became a Schmall Mart employee. (I would have made this revelation sooner had she acknowledged my existence in the 10 minutes I was standing at the counter waiting, but alas, she kept the suspense up to the last minute.)
I handed over my claim ticket, explained that I had received a call three days ago that this item was here and watched as she looked through two drawers of envelopes, boxes and bags for my name. Nothing. Nowhere. Not there. "You say you got a call saying it was here?" she asked, as if I must have confused the Schmall Mart call with a call from my sister telling me about the pants she found on sale last weekend.
"Well, it's not here." Again, I envisioned myself leaping over the counter like an Olympic vaulter, pushing her aside and combing through those packages myself. But figured that was not the best idea, the most fun for me, but not the best.
Suddenly feeling like Schmall Mart was conspiring against me, forcing me to return time and time again so I would keep putting things in my cart on the way back to the photo lab, I called later that same day thinking that maybe someone else knew the secret location of my now phantom package. I got the manager this time, who looked and looked and looked. Nothing. Then, "Wait! What's that behind the refrigerator?" I knew it! My package WAS there and had slipped into some kind of Schmall Mart Bermuda Triangle.
"Oh, sorry, that's just an employee's jacket." Buzz kill. I then listened to the manager explain that he's been fielding several calls from customers claiming they received calls confirming their items were ready for pick up when they were not. What kind of bored Schmall Mart employee makes those kind of prank calls? Maybe I am judging too quickly, maybe someone named Spiffany Frizzle ordered something too, and maybe she has a phone number that's the inverse of my number but the employee is dyslexic so she read it backwards and called me by mistake. Yeah, that could happen.
At this point I am making so many negative observations about Schmall Mart photo lab employees that if I were in a tight fitting t-shirt you could call me Simon Cowell.
So now we come to the pivotal point in this tirade. My original claim ticket said that my purchase would be in today, which is May, 27th. I asked the manager if it would indeed be in as scheduled. He told me he couldn't guarantee that because the photo lab was taking longer than usual. The photo company, which rhymes with Sugi, downsized from 10 plants to 4 and apparently their kiosks sometimes lie about when items will be ready. So now I have hostility toward Schmall Mart, Sugi and the friggin' recession for my purchase not being ready. As if I need more to do! The manager is supposed to call me today as soon as the truck comes to let me know if this now very anti-climatic purchase has arrived. Of course, it's for my daughter's teacher, and it's a shirt all the kids were going to sign at a party today, for the LAST DAY of school - so if it DOESN'T arrive, my daughter's teacher will get a plain t-shirt with student's signatures on it today and a photo t-shirt sometime this summer. If it ever makes it from the Sugi warehouse to Schmall Mart that is.
So here I sit, surrounded by purchases I made at Schmall Mart on every trek out there - child's flip flops, Granimals t-shirts, new foundation (to cover the frown lines I have acquired this week from making so many trips to Schmall Mart.)
I am waiting, as if the photo lab was the maternity ward and that kiosk is giving birth to my silly photo t-shirt. If that baby is late, my inner Simon Cowell may rear his perfectly coiffed, tanned head. But, if I can honestly say that this is my biggest problem this week, then I can pour myself a glass of wine, that I bought at Schmall Mart, and sit back with some yummy snacks, bought at Schmall Mart, and lounge in the sun - with sun block on of course, that I bought at Schmall Mart and be glad that it's really not THAT big of a deal and wait for my next minor problem to come along. So I can vent. So that elastic doesn't burst. Or I'll have to go buy more comfy panties at, you guessed it, Schmall Mart.

Sunday, May 24, 2009

I'd like a non-fat, no whip, mocha, vodka, crack latte - to go

Forgot legalizing marijuana.
I need some kind of amphetamine to keep me going, preferably one that has side effects including, but not limited to weight loss, clear skin, shiny hair and a cheery disposition. Okay, maybe that's a bit far reaching, if a mom had a cheery disposition all the time, everyone would know she was on drugs. Dead give away.
I used to teach elementary school. I used to be the person parents sent their children off to who spent more hours of the day with those children than their parents did. Parents are smart.
Then I gave birth to my second child and we (my husband and I) decided that I could stay home this time around. FANTASTIC! I thought. I'll be able to devote myself 100% to the kids and our home and won't be walking through the door with work stress stuck to me like Velcro.
I will take up baking and cook more and still manage to lose all that baby weight... because I'll be home all the time.
Insert visual of crack head here.
I wish I still had a stash of what I must have been smoking then.
It's not that I thought it would be easy. It's just so different than what I thought it would be. I don't miss the work stress, but I do miss the camaraderie of co-workers. I don't bake regularly, but some of the refrigerated cookie dough actually makes it into the oven to fulfill it's purpose of becoming a cookie - the rest of the dough never had a chance. I do cook more, but not as adventurously or exotically as I wish I did. Wait, do fish sticks count as exotic if there not in an actual "stick" shape? As for the baby weight, please refer to the cookie dough eating segment of my ramblings. I have (in spurts) done a better job of carving out time to do my impression of a hamster on a wheel in my basement on my elliptical. I reference a hamster because they are still considered cute when they're a little pudgy, and I am a little furrier than I would like as my eyebrows are screaming for a waxing. I applaud those moms who I see out there with their Baby Bjorns, power walking while talking on their blue tooth (I suspect scheduling their eyebrow waxing.) I find myself looking at the other mom's at kindergarten drop off who are in an "outfit," not just clothes that are clean with hair that is styled (no, pony tails don't count, I asked.) Then I start to feel this tugging on my heart strings, well, actually, it's my son tugging on my pant leg, scamming for more Goldfish crackers. I realize that there was a time when I painstakingly chose my outfits, styled my hair and spent several minutes deciding what shade of gloss I was going to wear that day. That all led me to dating, getting married and having children! So I'll wear my t-shirt and yoga pants that may or may not match with my ponytail flying like the flag for motherhood - because the guy at the Starbucks drive thru might actually think I'm wearing yoga pants because I just got out of an actual yoga class. And that plus my grande latte will get me through the day.