Sunday, August 31, 2008

Guess what I did tonight!

That's right! I just got back from seeing Mamma Mia at the movie theater. It was very fun; it made me want to stand up on my seat and dance. Would have been kind of tricky with those folding seats but the desire was there. I wanted to be a......

I really should have danced - I need the exercise. My food list right now might make you ill just reading 24 hours (working my way backwards) I've had raspberry almond m&m's, popcorn, Twizzlers cherry bites, spaghetti, salt and vinegar potato chips, English muffin, grits, two eggs scrambled, fiber one cereal, Gorgonzola cheese grit cakes, oriental chicken salad (no, not from McDonalds), pizza, rocky road cake, chocolate chip cookies, and I am sure a few things that I have forgotten. many weight watchers points do we think that is? A million? Yeah, that sounds about right! I surrender, in fact, I think I'm going to send out an ....

So despite the fact that Meryl Streep should have been playing the young ingenue's grandmother instead of her mother, I loved it! And, you know, I really don't find Pierce Brosnan all that attractive but I liked him too. Until he took his shirt off...put it back on!!! Some people (myself included) just look better with clothes on. The other two male leads - hmm, not so good. Usually I think Colin Firth is pretty cute but he was pudgy in this movie. (I know - who am I to dis pudgy right now! - it's like the Seinfeld episode when George doesn't like the woman who has thinning hair.) And the young boy leads - eww - too young. It was the Blue Lagoon movie with singing and dancing.

But I just have to join the chorus of people who thought the movie was a delightful romp. The songs are great, the scenery was to die for, and the costumes were hysterical.

OK - time to sing one more?'s an ear worm just waiting to happen.. go ahead, click!

Friday, August 29, 2008

Take this job and ...

No not motherhood - that job can be frustrating but I am sticking it out! Not the marriage - I am a "'til death do us part" advocate - so maybe later I have to murder him but not yet. Not the laundress, housefrau, chauffeur, doer of good works - all taxing but fine. No - the JOB - the one that pays the bills. 40 hours a week for the United States government. I have a hard time fitting in my 40 hours a week. So while every other government worker in the world is thinking "Hooray! Labor Day - a three day weekend - hooray!" I'm thinking, "Thank goodness, Labor Day. I can go in to the office for a whole day and not have phones ringing and people stopping by and e-mails flying and I can get some work done. Hooray!" My job has this double edged sword of flexibility and personal responsibility. It's a joy and a drain. I am in a position where I can set my own schedule. Which means - I get to go to Mass each week with my school children, I get to go to the ladies Bible study that meets in the middle of the morning on Wednesday, when there's field day, open house, field trip, awards day - I'm there. And those things are what is important to me. But then it also means - I'm dragging myself back to the hospital at 9:00pm to do paperwork or prepare what is needed for the next day, I'm making phone calls during soccer practice, I'm up with the birds on a Saturday or Sunday sneaking over to the office for a few hours while my family sleeps, I'm looking forward to a holiday - because I know my husband will be with the kids and I can go to work. There is no one else who does my job. If I don't do my job, it doesn't get done. Families suffer, children don't get what they need. But sometimes being stretched so thin makes me think that my family suffers and my children don't get what they need. So despite being blessed by this job with flexible hours, good pay, great co-workers, and the ability to really help people in need - sometimes I still want to be JUST MOM!

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

It's midnight, do you know where your laundry is?

Mine is spinning around in the washer. Darks. Dark school uniform pants. Why does it never hit me until midnight that my boys have run out of pants? Why don't I just buy FIVE pairs of pants for the FIVE days of the week and be done with it? Why? Why? WHY? The agony of the laundry.

I've been trying to compose a little ditty about laundry but I'm not quite there yet. It's along the lines of "How much wood could a wood chuck chuck, if a wood chuck would chuck wood?" I'm thinking "How many loads of laundry could a lovely lady load if a ...." but it's not right. It's just a load of...(you know I don't cuss out loud so you have to fill in the blanks).

You know in my very first post I promised to blog about laundry - so check this one off your list - laundry accomplished. That's the only time you will ever get to check that off your list (unless, of course you're a man - no list, no laundry, what's she talking about?) because laundry is NEVER accomplished. I'm actually fairly proud of my system for staying on top of laundry. It's not exactly Fly Lady (pretend that's a hyper link and you can go check out the Flylady website) but it is a system and it keeps the laundry in motion. I have a three bin hamper/sorter in my laundry room - whites, lights, and darks. I need a fourth bin for delicates but it doesn't exist so they go in a pile on the floor next to the hamper. As I sort, wash, dry, and fold - they go into stacks - each child and adult has their pile and....hold your breath...their color coded hangers!!! This is very important for two not the same sized boys who wear school uniforms. Look at the tag once - hang it on the right colored hanger and you don't have to look at the tag again to figure out whose shirt you've got. It's bliss.

Despite my system, there are laundry problems. My laundry does not run like a well-oiled machine from beginning to end. Tween doesn't like the one step that mom doesn't do for him - put your clean clothes away. So he hides them. He tosses shirts up onto the shelf of his closet, he throws underwear in with the linens, he pushes shorts under the bed - he puts so much energy into hiding them from me, why doesn't he just put them away? Maybe I will try reverse psychology and say, "Whatever you do, do not put any of these clean clothes into those drawers!" "I better not find any of these clothes stacked in those drawers or you are in trouble!" I'll let you know how that works. DD- (have to think of cute blogging names - I know!) - lives behind a closed door. She's a teenager, that's the way it goes, no problem. But...whenever I catch a glimpse behind the door, I see laundry. stacks of clean laundry - in the baskets, on the dresser, and, this is the one that slays me, on the floor. Apparently DD also has a problem with the last step. What these two problems have in common is also the end result - "clean" laundry ending up on the floor and magically turning back into "dirty" laundry without ever having been worn. When I am pulling clothes out of my sorter/hamper to wash and they are STILL FOLDED from being washed the previous week - I see red!

So, I'm off to check my laundry - I promise this won't be my only post about laundry. That's right - laundry remains unfinished business! You see I have this idea about trying to calculate the total time I have spent on laundry. 1 load a day, 365 days a year, for twenty years, then add extra loads on weekends when I "catch up" and all the mid-week midnight uniform loads, and all the beach towels used for an hour but now they're sandy loads, and all the bedwetting loads, and all the dog hair/cat hair on perfectly good linens loads, and the towels used once and dropped on the floor of the bathroom loads, and the puppy peeing on the area rug by the door loads and...see, it's higher level math - needs it's own post!

Monday, August 25, 2008

It's my party

So I cried at the party - well, almost. I teared up and put on a smile and then waited until there was a minute to escape to the laundry room and cut loose. The reason for my tears - no it wasn't my birthday (although I am getting old, it doesn't make me cry) - it's my boy. My dear sweet boy brought me to tears. I don't have cute blogging nicknames for my kids yet. What should I call #1 son - the boy who makes me cry?, athlete?, artist?, probably ADD but unmedicated? - those are the bits and pieces of him. I guess what sums him up is Tween. I KNOW it's terribly trendy - it's a snotty new word that I don't particularly like but it is him. Now you could read that wrong and think he was snotty kid that I don't particularly like - that would be completely wrong, I love him absolutely, totally, completely. I had such a love affair with DD my first child that when I got pregnant with number two, I worried, "Will I be able to love this baby?" I loved number one so much, how would it be possible to love number two as well? I worried about this and so many other things that I spent part of my pregnancy on the couch of a very kind counselor whose name I can't remember. (He prescribed Prozac for me but that's a whole 'nother story!) So I love him. But he's Tween - he is definitely Tween by birth order - he is my "middle child" - I usually follow that up with "in every sense of the word". I'm a middle child, I know all about middle children. Attention seekers, usually naughty, NEEDY, NEEDY, NEEDY - middle child. And he is needy. He sometimes doesn't seem to know which end is up. So his lovely fifth grade teacher was at the party, she loves a good Tween story and despite school only being one week started, I had a good one for her. It wasn't as good as when after the six week unit on the Civil War he asked her in all sincerity, "Well, who won? " but it was close. But then the follow up came from his sixth grade teacher who is also at the party - he just seems lost in middle school. And that affirmed all my fears. He needs so much guidance during the day, he is so NOT independent, he is so quick to get angry at his mistakes and to retaliate for any perceived injustice, I worry he will get lost in middle school. And as I crack a joke about my parenting skills, I feel the tears come. And his lovely fifth grade teacher sees, and his wonderful sixth grade teacher sees, and they are so full of compassion and kindness that it just. makes. it. worse! How will I survive this? I want to take him home and just shelter him and then when he's home for a day I want to ship him off to boarding school. So I cried at the party, and I'll probably cry at the carpool line, and at the teacher conference, and at the PTO meeting, and at some point I'll have to dry the tears and grow up and figure out what to do. But for now ...

Sunday, August 24, 2008

This one is for real.

I wonder how many abandoned blogs I have out there in cyber space. Blogs I started with good intentions and emotional confessions and then abandoned for fear that some judgemental person from my "real life" would stumble upon it - figure out who I am and then expose me. The problem with that paranoid little fantasy is that there really isn't much to expose. My life is hardly interesting even to those that know and love me. The minutia of laundry, driving kids around, cleaning house, going to work, helping at church, attending the PTO is BORING!! Why would anyone take the time to cyberstalk me simply to discover that I am a suburban housewife? So this time, I am just going to write. I enjoy my life. I think a blog will make a nice little diary for ME to enjoy. IF anyone stumbles across it, and IF they can get through a post without dozing off, and IF they happen to be an incredible internet sleuth and able to discover my real identity, and IF they decide to out me to the world - I'm cool with that. I am a mild mannered mother of three, faithful wife, practicing Catholic, school board member, and educator. That doesn't mean that I don't ever get mad at my children, that I never say a cuss word or laugh at an off color joke, never drink too much or have a crush. It's all OK - it's just me. Just mom.