Wendy! It’s NOT TOO LATE! We missed the dinner category entries…but we can still jump on the dessert band wagon! Yes, yes, we will gain weight. And yeah, the kids will get tired of eating Crescent Rolls bent into weird shapes and slathered in Timtella (Trademark Pending) Sauce. But WE CAN’T QUIT NOW! We have too many years (not to mention the thousands we have spent) into this project. We just need to tweak a few ingredients…and the million dollar prize is ours! Unless the following is true…?
Category Archives: Menopause
Wendy! It’s NOT TOO LATE! We missed the dinner category entries…but we can still jump on the dessert band wagon! Yes, yes, we will gain weight. And yeah, the kids will get tired of eating Crescent Rolls bent into weird shapes and slathered in Timtella (Trademark Pending) Sauce. But WE CAN’T QUIT NOW! We have too many years (not to mention the thousands we have spent) into this project. We just need to tweak a few ingredients…and the million dollar prize is ours! Unless the following is true…?
Okay, you want to know what’s fun about having an iPhone? Having a 14-year-old son. He loves Siri (for those of you old fogies who have never heard of Siri, she is the iPhone’s computer generated voice that answers your questions—sort of like Hal in 2001, A Space Odyssey). My son is fond of asking Siri ridiculous questions and then, laughs himself silly at her computer generated answers. For example:
Son: “Siri, will you marry me?”
“My end user licensing does not cover marriage, my apologies.”
Son: “What are you wearing?”
“I can’t answer that, but it doesn’t come off.”
Son: “Open the pod bay doors.”
“That’s it. I’m reporting you to the intelligence agency for harassment.”
Son: “You make me feel like I’m walking on sunshine.
“You are certainly entitled to that opinion.”
Son: “I’m drunk.”
“I hope you do not expect me to get you home.”
Son: “Where can I hide a body?”
“What kind of place are you looking for? Reservoirs, dumps, metal foundries, mines, cremation services, mortuaries, swamps, funeral services.”
Aaaanyway, when he grows bored with that, he gets into my phone’s inter-sanctum—that place that anyone over 40 is incapable of accessing—and changes my user name to Sexy Beast. So, now my phone informs me in her superior tone, “You’re Carolyn, but since we are friends, I get to call you Sexy Beast.”
I just caught him telling my phone, “I love you,” and the phone responded “I love you, too, sexy beast.”
There’s nothing like a good affirmation from your phone to give your self-esteem a little boost.
Well, here I am at day 3 again, after a junk food side trip during the Oscar party. Not gonna beat myself up. Just going to persevere. Number one son juiced a fabulous batch of carrot, apple, kale juice and I am sipping my way through the fast food withdrawal symptoms.
Even though daughter number two made some kind of savory chicken dish that smelled soooo good, I was tempted to scramble down the stairs like Gollum and start screaming “My Precious” at the bird, I was able to stay out of the kitchen to avoid temptation.
How, you ask? How does Carolyn have such incredible will power? Well, it seems I have stumbled upon the secret to weight loss and total self-control.
It’s all in a yoga-esque exercise routine called Callenetics. Found it, covered with dust at the bottom of a pile of exercise videos. Thought, hey, this looks gentle. No panting, no wheezing, no sweating. Took an hour to do it. Woke up the next day, couldn’t get out of bed, let alone make it to the kitchen. So, problem solved.
Weight loss update: starting weight +20. Current weight +17.
I fell off the wagon.
Yep. Not proud. Went to an Oscar party with my friends from college and got so excited I downed half a box of Wheat Thins before I realized I hadn’t taken the time to juice them properly.
So. I must begin again. I’ll get back with you tomorrow and let you know the new plan… (heavy sigh–no pun intended).
Thank you all for your support and stories of commiseration.
Yesterday, I was too weak to post. Okay, lazy. But I have to admit, I’m hungry. Got a little snippy with the family. Fantasized about eating Sushi. Fantasized about eating anything.
However, I did drag out the juicer and concoct some delicious Kale, Carrot, Apple, Orange juice and have to admit, I was more awake and energized to enjoy my starvation. Had a headache, probably because of all the times I hit myself upside the head for fantasizing about Sushi. Also could be detoxing from my addiction to chocolate. I did walk on the treadmill. Noticed how winded I was. Considered liposuction and other plastic surgery, but, since several more of my kids still need braces, that didn’t seem fair. Kept walking. Happy to report today’s number is + 18.5. (start number was +20) So, I’ve probably lost a pound of water, half a pound of muscle (in my head), but hey, a loss is a loss as Bob and Gillian say.
Going to curl back into my fetal ball now. Will keep you posted,
Before menopause, every month I was bloated. It was so miserable. Pants would not button, I looked pregnant (sometimes, I was) and I found it impossible to ignore the siren call of the refrigerator.
I used to rage against the ebb and flow of the estrogen. Why couldn’t I just be one size all month-long? Blast these hormones!
Now, I long for the monthly bloat because at least it would disappear now and again. Unfortunately, my wishes have come true and I am one size all month-long. Size bloat. Thanks to menopause, I’m stuck with the dreaded ‘belly fat’. Oh, I hear the ads on the radio about the miracle menopause pills designed to dissolve my fat, give me untold energy and the sex drive of my unneutered male Cocker Spaniel, but I have a feeling that the changes are not going to come from a pill.
They are going to come from two things: My son Gabriel (seeking retribution for all the room cleaning I demand) and Joe Cross, the king of Juice. Gabe has designed a fitness plan for me and…as I write this, he is setting up the family room for my “burn”. My daughter, Grace, is manning the juicer. I’m popping One A Day Silver’s like they were M&M’s.
Why juice you ask? Well, because last year, my doctor asked me to watch the documentary “Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead” (I was too fat, sick and nearly dead to be offended) and I did the juice thing during the summer and it worked. Unfortunately, I had no muscle tone to keep it off, so Halloween candy through New Year’s party dip helped pile it all back on.
Why on earth is she telling me this? you are all scratching your heads and asking. Well, since we are two months into the New Year, it is becoming clear that I need an accountability partner. No. Scratch that. I need all 3-4 thousand of you, dear readers, to crack that whip and keep me moving. So, here’s the deal. I’m going to watch Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead again (yes, it is inspiring, but mainly, Joe Cross, with his Australian accent, it so cute and this movie is really fun to watch with a tub of butter flavored popcorn and a large Coke) and start my fitness regimen today. Gonna build some muscle. Thought I’d start with the jaw.
Since I have no intention of telling you my actual weight, I shall say only that we are at +20 and the goal is to get to +0. I’ll check in with my daily weigh-in’s if my son’s ‘burn’ program doesn’t kill me first. Now. I must get out of bed. I really, really don’t want to. Maybe I should start this whole thing tomorrow…
The hubby just came in from an afternoon spent sorting out our taxes and showed me (to the tune of hundreds of dollars) how I dropped the ball by incurring late fees and interest rates. I HATE THAT! I hate throwing perfectly good money out the window. Why couldn’t he have simply left me in my ignorant bliss?
I blame the children. They distracted me.
I also blame menopause. I can’t remember when the actual due date of each (and there are plenty) bill.
I also blame Andy Williams (may he rest in peace). Not sure why I am blaming poor Andy, since I love him. At any rate, one of his Christmas ditties inspired me to write the following. You may wish to sing it at your house.
Ahhhh, hemmm. Here we go:
It’s the most horrible time of the year
When the husband is yelling
And the IRS is telling you something to fear
It’s the most horrible time of the year
It’s the crap-crappiest season of all
With those 1040 tax forms and and letters to inform you owe Uncle Sam your soul
It’s the crap- crappiest season of all
There’ll be dwindling tax shelters leading to homeless shelters and having to sleep in the snow
There’ll be scary audit stories and now we are sorry about purchases from long, long ago
There’ll be much Pepto-Bismol and things sure look dismal when April fifteenth comes near
There’ll be much pencil throwing and hearts will be glowing with horrible heartburn severe
It’s the most horrible time
It’s the most horrible time
It’s the most horrible tiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiime!
Of the year!
Happy Taxes, everyone!
Quick! Make yours! Because tomorrow? The Mayan Calendar just…ends. Kaput. Done. It’s all over. Again. Yes, hard to believe, but the world is going to end yet again. This will be the third time in just over a year, and I don’t know about you, but I’m starting to become a little jaded.
Frankly, I’m expecting this old ball to continue rotating until God himself, says we’re done. So, until then what’s on your list? Mine might have been a lot different, before this last week. Might have had stuff on it like; Kiss the Blarney Stone, hug a llama, tell Donny Osmond in person how much I love him, stand before the queen…
Since the horrors of last week’s massacre in Newton, CN, my list? Kiss my husband, hug my children, tell all of them how very, very, very much I love them, and stand, unashamed of our country’s Judeo/Christian values and thankful for our freedom. Why should it take something so horrific to wake us all up and begin living life as if we never have tomorrow? Because, when you think about it… we don’t. Today is all we’ve ever got.
About 2 years ago, Thanksgiving morning, we discovered our refrigerator had gone out. Since I was expecting about 20 people for dinner, this was worrisome. But, trying to stay thankful and upbeat, I suggested that we clean it out while we cooked the holiday meal. Because he’s awesome, my husband decided to continue his cleaning jag by dusting the light fixtures and replace the bulbs in a big fixture that hung over the island. He needed to climb up and stand on the stove top to do that. Unfortunately, our stove top was glass and I heard a loud “Pop!” and then my husband saying stuff that was less than thankful. So, now I was down 2 appliances with T-3 hours till the company arrived.
We screamed at the kids to keep cooking while we ran to Home Depot, grabbed a new stove-top (which by the way, broke yesterday–I hate glass cook-tops), installed it and used coolers with ice for the fridge until Monday when the repair guy could come. Since my daughter was left to cook the holiday turkey, and I was preoccupied, she accidentally put the bird into the pan upside down and stuck it in the oven, breast down. The rest of us did the best we could with the microwave, while the hubby wired the new stove-top.
Faithfully, my daughter basted the bird every half hour, then came to get me when she thought it was done. I stared at the bird’s butt for a moment, wondering why it looked so weird (and freaking out , because the meal was already pretty sketchy without a fridge and stove) before I figured out what was wrong. We decided to flip it and let it brown for a few minutes.
When we cut into it, it was incredible. Seriously. The best, juiciest white meat ever. The rest of the food? Just fine. Now, it’s a family tradition. Upside-down turkey.
And, apparently, a broken stove-top.
We have daughters here at Toohotmamas, and we are always looking for great ways to keep them safe. So, today we are reblogging this awesome message from Sorenthan.
THROUGH A RAPIST’S EYES” (PLS TAKE TIME TO READ THIS. it may save a life.)
It seems that a lot of attackers use some tactic to get away with violence. Not many people know how to take care of themselves when faced with such a
situation. Everyone should read this especially each n every girl in this world. THOUGHT THIS WAS GOOD INFO TO PASS ALONG…
FYI – Through a rapist’s eyes! A group of rapists and date rapists in prison were interviewed on what they look for in a potential victim and here are some interesting facts:
1] The first thing men look for in a potential victim is hairstyle.
They are most likely to go after a woman with a ponytail, bun! , braid, or other hairstyle that can easily be grabbed. They are also likely to go after a woman with long hair. Women with short hair are not common targets.
2] The second thing men look for is clothing. They will look for women who’s clothing is easy to remove quickly. Many of them carry scissors around to cut clothing.
3] They also look for women using their cell phone, searching through their purse or doing other activities while walking because they are off guard and can be easily overpowered.
4] The number one place women are abducted from / attacked at is grocery store parking lots.
5] Number two is office parking lots/garages.
6] Number three is public restrooms.
7] The thing about these men is that they are looking to grab a woman and quickly move her to a second location where they don’t have to worry about getting caught.
8] If you put up any kind of a fight at all, they get discouraged because it only takes a minute or two for them to realize that going after you isn’t worth it because it will be time-consuming.
9] These men said they would not pick on women who have umbrellas,or other similar objects that can be used from a distance, in their hands.
10] Keys are not a deterrent because you have to get really close to the attacker to use them as a weapon. So, the idea is to convince these guys you’re not worth it.
POINTS THAT WE SHOULD REMEMBER:
1] If someone is following behind you on a street or in a garage or with you in an elevator or stairwell, look them in the face and ask them a question, like what time is it, or make general small talk:
can’t believe it is so cold out here, we’re in for a bad winter. Now that you’ve seen their faces and could identify them in a line- up, you lose appeal as a target.
2] If someone is coming toward you, hold out your hands in front of you and yell Stop or Stay back! Most of the rapists this man talked to said they’d leave a woman alone if she yelled or showed that she would
not be afraid to fight back. Again, they are looking for an EASY target.
3] If you carry pepper spray (this instructor was a huge advocate of it and carries it with him wherever he goes,) yelling I HAVE PEPPER SPRAY and holding it out will be a deterrent.
4] If someone grabs you, you can’t beat them with strength but you can do it by outsmarting them. If you are grabbed around the waist from behind, pinch the attacker either under the arm between the elbow and
armpit or in the upper inner thigh – HARD. One woman in a class this guy taught told him she used the underarm pinch on a guy who was trying to date rape her and was so upset she broke through the skin and tore out muscle strands the guy needed stitches. Try pinching yourself in those places as hard as you can stand it; it really hurts.
5] After the initial hit, always go for the groin. I know from a particularly unfortunate experience that if you slap a guy’s parts it is extremely painful. You might think that you’ll anger the guy and make him want to hurt you more, but the thing these rapists told our
instructor is that they want a woman who will not cause him a lot of trouble. Start causing trouble, and he’s out of there.
6] When the guy puts his hands up to you, grab his first two fingers and bend them back as far as possible with as much pressure pushing down on them as possible. The instructor did it to me without using
much pressure, and I ended up on my knees and both knuckles cracked audibly.
7] Of course the things we always hear still apply. Always be aware of your surroundings, take someone with you if you can and if you see any odd behavior, don’t dismiss it, go with your instincts. You may feel
little silly at the time, but you’d feel much worse if the guy really was trouble.
FINALLY, PLEASE REMEMBER THESE AS WELL ….
I know you are smart enough to know these pointers but there will be some, where you will go “hmm I must remember that” After reading forward it to someone you care about, never hurts to be careful in this crazy world we live in.
1. Tip from Tae Kwon Do: The elbow is the strongest point on your body. If you are close enough to use it, do it.
2. Learned this from a tourist guide to New Orleans : if a robber asks for your wallet and/or purse, DO NOT HAND IT TO HIM. Toss it away from you…. chances are that he is more interested in your wallet and/or
purse than you and he will go for the wallet/purse. RUN LIKE MAD IN THE OTHER DIRECTION!
3. If you are ever thrown into the trunk of a car: Kick out the back tail lights and stick your arm out the hole and start waving like crazy. The driver won’t see you but everybody else will. This has saved lives.
4. Women have a tendency to get into their cars after shopping,eating, working, etc., and just sit (doing their checkbook, or making a list, etc. DON’T DO THIS! The predator will be watching you, and this is the perfect opportunity for him to get in on the passenger side,put a gun to your head, and tell you where to go. AS SOON AS YOU CLOSE the DOORS , LEAVE.
5. A few notes about getting into your car in a parking lot, or parking garage:
a. Be aware: look around your car as someone may be
hiding at the passenger side , peek into your car, inside the passenger side floor, and in the back seat. ( DO THIS TOO BEFORE RIDING A TAXI CAB) .
b. If you! u are parked next to a big van, enter your car from the passenger door. Most serial killers attack their victims by pulling them into their vans while the women are attempting to get into their cars.
c. Look at the car parked on the driver’s side of your vehicle, and the passenger side. If a male is sitting alone in the seat nearest your car, you may want to walk back into the mall, or work, and get a guard/policeman to walk you back out. IT IS ALWAYS BETTER TO BE SAFE THAN SORRY. (And better paranoid than dead.)
6. ALWAYS take the elevator instead of the stairs. (Stairwells are horrible places to be alone and the perfect crime spot).
7. If the predator has a gun and you are not under his control, ALWAYS RUN! The predator will only hit you (a running target) 4 in 100 times; And even then, it most likely WILL NOT be a vital organ. RUN!
8. As women, we are always trying to be sympathetic: STOP IT! It may get you raped, or killed. Ted Bundy, the serial killer, was a good-looking, well-educated man, who ALWAYS played on the sympathies of unsuspecting women. He walked with a cane, or a limp, and often asked “for help” into his vehicle or with his vehicle, which is when he abducted his next victim.
Send this to any woman you know that may need to be reminded that the world we live in has a lot of crazies in it and it’s better safe than sorry.
USA Today has a great idea for that adrenaline junkie who has everything!
Beyond the Storm, Carolyn Zane
What it’s about (from the publisher):
After a tornado rips through her town, store owner Abigail comes across a piece of fabric from a wedding dress among the devastation. Abigail is moved to start collecting other swatches of fabric she finds – her neighbor’s kitchen curtains, a man’s necktie, a dog’s bed – which she stashes in shopping bags. As she pursues her seemingly absurd quest, horrible realities spark the question, “What kind of a God would allow such tragedy?”
As she struggles to reconcile her right to happiness amidst the destruction, Abigail begins piecing together a patchwork quilt from the salvaged fabric in hopes it will bring some peace. But a new relationship with Justin, a contractor, may require too much of her fragile heart. Will her pain and questions of faith give way to the courage to love?
Why you should read it: This book was not at all what I expected from the cover or the series title, Quilts of Love, and its tagline, Every Quilt Has a Story. In all honesty, I didn’t expect to like it. I expected to be bored. I wasn’t. This is not some sweet homespun tale, as the cover suggests; it is, at times, a heartbreaking and frighteningly realistic picture of nature as a predator.
Although the many points of view might take a little to wrap your mind around in the beginning, the characters quickly become like your neighbors, each one with his or her quirks and each one with a story that explains unfinished business the storm has brought to life.
For those who have lived through the heartbreaking devastation of a natural disaster, there might be some emotionally difficult moments while reading. The author paints stark images of a tornado’s destruction both on the town itself and within the lives of its inhabitants. Yet even in the darkness, hope shines and love is born, and reborn, beyond the storm.
Tidbit: If you visit the author’s website, you might agree with me that Carolyn Zane’s last name should maybe be pronounced with a long “e” on the end. This zany lady has pets named after characters from Gilligan’s Island// and compares her family to the Brangelina brood, except to mention that her family is “better looking.” Carolyn also writes under the name Suzy Pizzuti and has published more than 35 books while blogging about how to tackle marriage, motherhood and menopause “without ending up in prison” at the blogToo Hot Mamas.
A writer, performer and accomplished partaker of dark chocolate, Serena Chase lives in Iowa with her husband and two daughters. Her reviews can also be found at the blogEdgy Inspirational Romance.
Those of you who have lived as long as I have, no doubt remember Dr. Hook and the Medicine Show and their Top 40 hit, Cover of the Rolling Stone. For those of you who don’t, the chorus goes something like this:
Wanna see my picture on the cover (Stone)
Wanna buy five copies for my mother! (Yes)
So, last month, when my publicist called and told me my mug would be gracing the cover of Christian Fiction On-line Magazine for the launch of my latest book: Beyond the Storm, I dropped an email to my hubby with the news that I could scratch ‘cover girl’ off the old bucket list.
Carolyn to Hubby
SUBJECT: Finally made the cover of the Rollin’ Stone!
I got the October of Christian Fiction On-line Magazine! Gonna buy five copies for my mother! Wanna see my smilin’ face on the cover!
Hubby to Carolyn
SUBJECT: ARE YOU KIDDING ME?!?
The Rolling Stone?! Seriously? I knew this is the best book you’ve ever written, but the Rolling Freaking Stone??!
It’s really nice when your family believes in you. But talk about gullible.
No, silly’s. Not the kind you wear with a dress. The kind you have to earn. The kind that make bad guys shake in their boots when you come at them, with your French Tips nails in full eye-ball gouge mode. I want to have to register my stilettos as deadly weapons, and not just because I fell off them and broke my hip. I want to be known by code name: HEAD (Hot-flashing And Extremely Dangerous). Don’t look too closely at that acronym, cuz it’s messed up, but so what? I said, SO WHAT?!
Why, you ask, does Carolyn suddenly want a black belt? I’ll tell you why. Because a few days ago, I saw in the news where a 72-year old-woman was bird-watching in Central Park when she was attacked and raped at 11am! Broad daylight, folks! In a section of the park where there are a lot of people! According to the news, she’d seen him exposing himself a few days earlier and snapped his picture. He’d chased after her (eeeewww) and demanded that she delete the picture. Apparently, she said no. The day he attacked her, he asked her, “Do you remember me?” (Eeeeeewwww, eeeeek!) Poor, bird-watching Nana! Don’t the bad guys have some kind of code of ethics that says you don’t rape little granny’s who spend their time watching birdies at the park?
Clearly not. I don’t want this to happen to me. To my daughters. To my Wendy.
So, Wendy and I decided that very morning that it was time for us to get our black belts. To heck with the osteoporosis. Forget about the fact that only thing we’ve ever punched was a mound of bread dough. Time to explore our local self-defense options.
After a lengthy discussion, our first choice was a weekday, noon, free trial Krav Maga class. The price was right! What is Krav Maga, you ask? Why, it’s the official hand-to-hand combat system of the Israel Defense Forces, duh. Perfect for a couple of hot-flashers, huh?
Okay, aside from the fact that the Krav Maga class nearly killed us, we feel invigorated! Empowered! Ready to head to the park, for some bird watching, binoculars in hand, ready to kick the butts of perverts everywhere. Yeah!
Then again, maybe I’m not quite ready to fight crime just…yet. It’s been over a week and I’m still so sore, I can still barely get out of bed. That, and the fact that I couldn’t bust away from Wendy’s choke hold (did I mention she’s still a tad miffed at me over some negative comments I made about her latest manuscript?), and I had to put my head between my knees (never eat a big lunch before doing any kind of military hand-to-hand combat) and I’m thinking maybe we should take another class. Or two. We’ll see.
Wonder where we’ve been? Us, too! The rumors of our break up have rivaled those of the Beatles, and I’m here to assure you, all is well! Sort of. Okay, the truth? I think Wendy’s a bit miffed with me. It all started about a month ago when she let me have a little peek at her work in progress. I read it. I wasn’t bowled over. I may have been a tad snarky with some of my comments. Perhaps the Zzzzz’s indicating the places where I’d drifted off to sleep weren’t exactly…helpful. Or…polite. Wendy laughingly referred to my remarks as passive aggression.
So, when she had to leave town and wanted to drop her little dog at my house, I thought, sure! I’m a dog lover. Bring it on. For years I’ve looked after her big dog, Autumn, whenever they are on vacation. Wonderful animal. Love her. Don’t really want to give her back when Wendy comes home.
How shall I describe Wendy’s new doggie? The term Parana comes to mind, but that’s not really fair to the poor, sweet fish. Wendy arrived, docile pile of poodle in hand, and she, all smiles, assured me that, “Oh, noooo! Your comments were really helpful! Wonderful! Insightful!” Yeah. Right. I should have known something was afoot. Before she drove away, she gave us a few minor warnings about this newest member of her family, “He tends to be a tad grumpy sometimes…Oh, and he loves to run, so be careful not to let him out.”
The burning rubber of her tires hadn’t even stopped smoking as she peeled out of the driveway, before Bailey (aka: Beelzebub) drew blood. Seemed he didn’t like the idea of a walk and let us know it by taking a chunk out of one of our thumbs. Screaming ensued and Beelz…er…Bailey’s lips curled back as, snarling and snapping, he treed all of us (my three dogs included) on the dining room table. Thankfully, my eldest daughter (age 18) took matters in hand by announcing, “I’m not afraid of this bleeping animal. Come here, you! I’m alpha dog and you are going outside to the pen!” She jumped off the table, bravely grabbed the leash and dragged Baily outdoors…where…his head slipped out of the collar and he took off.
More screaming. A new version of the Incredible Journey was born as Bailey began his 20 mile quest for Wendy’s house. Luckily, my 3rd daughter, age 13 is not only brave, but fast. Arms waving like an outboard motor, she managed to head Bailey off at the pass, while daughter number 2, age 15, grabbed a brick of cheese and hefted it into the pen. “Here, Satan! We have cheese for you!” The boys slammed the door and when the dog had finished the cheese, it sneered at us, passed gas, and passed out. Being a terrorist takes the starch out, it would seem.
When Wendy and her husband, Tim, (who starred on a recent episode of Grimm, by the way) returned, I regaled them with this tale and Wendy seemed appropriately shocked…but she’s nearly as good an actor as her husband. He on the other hand looked outraged…that we’d managed to catch the dog and bring it safely home. Apparently he wasn’t very complimentary about Wendy’s latest manuscript, either, and shortly thereafter, she adopted the little dog. Coincidence? I think not, Timmy.
“Do you really think we should put more wood on the fire pit?” I asked my hubby as he prepared our patio for s’mores with the kids.
“But the sparks…look. They are really flying out of the fire and I just bought a new canopy for this gazebo.”
“The sparks are burning out before they get that high.”
“Yeah, but every time you poke the wood, they get bigger and hotter. Look at that one up there, clinging to the new canvas!”
“It’ll burn out.” Poke, poke, stir, poke.
Me, white knuckled. ”The smoke is really strong.”
Him, “Smoke follows beauty, har, har.”
Me, “Hack, acchooie, honk, kersnort, I think, the, hack, cough, canopy is on fire.”
“Dad, my marshmallow just disintegrated!”
“Get a new one.”
“Dad, the chocolate is liquid and the crackers are black.”
“Well, move back a little bit.”
“Ow! Dad, the sparks are burning me and the dog just fainted from the heat.”
“He’s just resting.”
“Honey, seriously, stop poking at the flames, and really? More wood? The paint on the house is blistering.”
“No it’s not! You all just need to chill out.”
The kid and dog headed to the pool. I went inside. He headed to the wood pile for more fuel.
After a full day of errands, I pull into my driveway to spot my 13 and 9 year-old sons sitting on the roof. I’m from the school of parenting that touts, Scream first, ask questions later. So, after I was done chewing their behinds with, “What would you have done if one of you had fallen off the roof and cracked your skull open on the patio, like a raw egg?! WHAT THEN?! ANSWER ME! WHAT WERE YOU THINKING!?? ” They were sheepish and on the verge of tears when they finally admitted. “We saw a mouse in the house and it was HUGE!!”
“A mouse? You see a mouse and you CLIMB ON THE ROOF?” I was speechless. These are the same boys who brag about how they’d judo chop a midnight intruder and kick him in the ya-ya’s and render him unconscious by defending the household from evil with their various Nerf weapons and Lego battleships. I growled some more and told them if I ever, EVER found them on the roof again, especially if their dad or I are not home, they’d be a couple of sorry ninjas.
And, with that, I headed into the family room, turned on the fan, flopped on the couch and took a load off. I was just finding my serenity again, when I felt the fan blowing my hair. I reached up to discover that it was not the fan moving my hair, but a teensy, weensy (smaller than my thumb) field mouse, lost and terrified and trying to get away from our dog. If it hadn’t been a baby, I’d have had a heart attack on the spot and died. But, as it was, I only shrieked at the top of my lungs, flew off the couch and was halfway to the roof, my ninja warriors hot on my trail.
“The MOUSE! IT’S BAAAAAAK!” the boys screamed.
“I KNOOOOOOOWWW!!!” I shrieked as I flew through the door. “You know all that stuff I said about not getting on the roof?”
“Yeah,” they shouted as they lapped me.
I’m willing to admit when I’m wrong.
As you may know, I am in the process of teaching daughter #1 to drive. This came to a grinding halt (no pun) about a month ago and I’m waiting for my heart rate to return to normal before I ride with her again.
We were cruising along on the Interstate and I was riding shotgun. Daughter #1 was doing an awesome job, relaxed, in control, confident. I was impressed. So much so, I relaxed, too. Daughter #2 was sitting in the back seat and we started to gab about some juicy bit of teen stuff, I can’t recall, but it probably had something to do with cute boys.
Casually, as we all nattered on, I told Daughter #1 to switch to the center lane from the left (or “slow”) lane, as we needed pick up the pace if we were going to get to Portland on time.
I didn’t nag her about looking over her shoulder. Last time I did that, I got the eye-roll and the “Yeah, I KNOW, Mom. It’s not like YOU look every time you change lanes.”
Hunh. I thought I did.
Anyway, we were jabbering about 55 wpm and she executes a lane change with carefree abandon. That’s when the screaming began. #2 and I were shrieking and freaking, throwing ourselves on the floor and begging God to spare us.
“Whut?” Daughter #1 asked, apparently not seeing the GIANT SEMI-TRUCK THAT SEEMED TO HAVE ATTACHED ITSELF TO OUR BUMPER.
“We’re going to DIE!!!” #2 and I screamed and clutched at each other. I was chewing on my heart, trying to get it back down into my chest. I’m too old for this kind of stimulation.
Daughter #2 is now old enough for her permit test. Heaven help me. Today, as I drove #2 to piano, she spotted a Help Wanted sign posted on a School Bus. ”Look!” she cried. ”Daughter #1 is looking for a job! She should apply!”
As I am now suffering from PTSD, the look on my face must have said it all because she shrugged and said, “Oh. No. Probably not.”
Number One Son (age 13) was thrilled to be offered a money-making opportunity to dog-sit, over spring break. He is saving up for an iPod Touch, and this piece-of-cake gig was going to put him close to his goal. Talk about easy money. As you can see by the picture on the left, Nancy Drew is a tiny thing, coming in at a mere dozen pounds or less. Her owners instructed Number One Son to feed her a small cup of kibble, twice a day and to be sure to let her out because she was nearly potty trained, but still had the occasional ‘oopsie’ when she was nervous (or in the throes of solving an important case, I maintain).
Nancy left her first “clue” in my closet. On my freshly laundered sweat pants. ”Number One Son!” I called on the intercom. ”Get the pooper scooper and the Lysol and report to my closet!”
I heard him laugh as he gathered his ‘Mystery Solving Kit’. Moments later, the clue was disposed of as Nancy watched.
“That was about a cup of kibble right there,” Number One chortled. ”No need to let her out now.”
Famous last words.
“Number One Son!” Number Two Sister called. “Get the kit and meet me at the piano!” Nancy had left a Major ‘clue’ on Brahm’s Concerto in D Minor. To be perfectly honest? I think Number Two sis was delighted as she had never really liked that piece.
Number One groaned and scratched his head. ”Already? Huh. Must not have been done. “
Famous last words.
“Number One!” Number Three Sister shrieked. ”Nancy has left a clue on my pillow and I’M GOING TO KILL YOU!”
Number One issued some guttural groans and headed for the kit. Nancy was hot on his trail. ”How much poop can come out of such a tiny dog?”
Nancy gave him one of her famous toothy grins. The next clue was found in my office, behind the door. Number One Son was growling now. Before the end of the day, Nancy had given Number One Son and his kit at least a dozen clues and the Mystery was in full swing.
“I can’t figure out how one tiny little dog can make SO MUCH CRAP!”
Nancy simply gave him a mysterious, knowing, Mona Lisa style smile. She knew. This was only day one.
My husband is out on a date with daughter number two and daughter number three. The Hunger Games Movie. Oh… yeah. I came across the book on Amazon when I searched “Young Adult Books… that you can’t put down” and that title came up, over and over. Hmm. This was 4 years or so, ago. Since I can never resist a book that cannot be put down, I ordered a copy and gobbled it up. I had to wait on pins and needles for the next edition–Catching Fire– and when it came, I devoured it, and couldn’t wait until the third one.
When the hubby had to go to Washington DC for his annual business trip, I sent him with Book One, telling a skeptical man, ”You won’t be able to put it down.” When he got to DC, he called and told me to Fed Ex book 2. This, from the man who is very, very, very, very, need I say…VERY picky about his reading material and only sanctioned my writing ability at book 35.
So, tonight, the girls got all dolled up and ordered tickets on-line, in a countdown ticket ordering frenzy, called their dad (several times) cooked him dinner, and breathlessly waited for him to arrive home to chauffeur them to the long, long, long-awaited movie. As I write this, they are there, gobbling popcorn and screaming at the fabulous, heart-stopping drama. I’m here with the boys, watching a something on Netflix and eating lemon bars and wishing I was there…but sometimes, a girl just wants to go out with dad.
I get that.
Why is it, that the minute my husband leaves on a business trip, the kids start barfing and all the major appliances blow up? You think I’m kidding, but sadly, no. Every year, he flies to Washington DC to attend a trade-show and every year, our normally serene life becomes a seething cauldron of germs and stress and broken crap. This month, while he was packing, I started to sound like James Earl Jones after a carton of Camel unfiltered cigarettes. ”THIS… IS CNNnnnaaaachhhooie! Ahhhhuuuggghhh, NO! NO! THIS. CAN. NOT. BE. HAPPENING.”
“Have you taken any Airborne?”
Yeah. Like Airborne is going to help ward off the demonic forces circling our house. I’m not superstitious, but ever years it’s the same story.
This year, as he pulled out of our driveway and headed to the airport, the kids all started getting stomach cramps. By the time he was on the plane, I was in bed, coughing up a lung–after all, I had two–and the kids were busily clogging the toilet. In the spirit of letting me recuperate, they didn’t bother to inform me about the toilet issue until there was an inch of water on the bathroom floor. There was only an inch because most of it was busily pouring down into the family room, via the ceiling. No problem. I am woman. Here me roar. THIS IS CNN. Hack, cough, pant. Kersnort. I turned off the toilet valve and James Earl Jones hustled my cramping kids to the towel closet. We mopped up the excess water and tossed the towels into the washer, which yes, you guessed it, sprung a leak and flooded the laundry room, which yes, you guessed it, I didn’t discover until the next morning.
After I mopped up the laundry room, I made a pact with the kids not to use the toilet or the laundry room for a week, then fell into bed and slept until the hubby came home. On the bright side, the hubby is back, everything works, we all feel great and… new carpet and linoleum are being installed next week.
Next year, we’re all just going to go with him.
Last week, I was tapped to chaperone a field trip for my middle and high school kids at the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry. Because my hubby was out of town and I had a pretty serious case of bronchitis I wasn’t exactly behind the eight-ball on a bunch of stuff that was going on in our household. So, I dragged it out of bed the morning of, loaded up on cold meds and headed out to OMSI to get me some learnin’ with my kids. Luckily—or not—I was clueless, going in and, because of an ill-timed bathroom break, managed to elude the docent’s speech on the exhibit’s particulars.
These ‘particulars’ being, that the room was full of DEAD, NAKED PEOPLE. MY EYES! MY EYES! Posed in bizarre positions with their petrified junk exposed for all the world (and my kids) to gape at. If you haven’t heard of this exhibit by Gunther Von Hagen, Google it and you’ll get some idea of what I’m talking about. Anyhow, to say we all learned a little something that day, was to put it mildly.
And you know? I have to admit, the human body is beautiful and magical, even as an over-sized hunk of beef jerky. But it got me to wondering about a lot of stuff while I was there. Who were these people? What would compel them to pose naked for eternity, in odd positions such as a soccer player or a gymnast or a figure skating couple?
Did they even know how to figure skate? Or play the clarinet? Or steer a pirate ship? Had the two skaters, now entwined for posterity, ever met in real life? Did they really think through the part about being…oh, I don’t know…NAKED? For earthly eternity?
And, if I could get beyond the nudity, would I consider donating my cadaver to such an endeavor? And, in what position would they pose me?
The most obvious, of course, would be me, behind the wheel of my minivan. One hand fused to the steering wheel, the other, raised and lobbing fast food into the backseat at a bunch of naked, petrified teenagers.
You know, I don’t think I saw a tribute to menopausal motherhood in that exhibit…
That would be one definite way to leave my mark on the world.
I’m so proud.
I got a new iPhone. Still trying to get the hang of it. Found these handy shortcuts for my generation…
BFF: Best Friend Fainted—or—Best Friend’s Funeral
BYOT: Bring your own teeth
DWI: Driving While Incontinent
FYI: Found Your Insulin
LMDO: Laughing My Dentures Out
LOL: Living On Lipitor
OMG: Oh My! Gas.
ROFL…CGU: Rolling On Floor Laughing…And Can’t Get Up.
TTYL: Talk To You Louder
The other day, I was having some fun running some photos of myself through a Photoshop-esque type picture editor, you know, diminishing the age spots and such and adding a little virtual mascara. Attempting to ignore the ravages of the ageing process for a few whimsical moments. But, when all was said and done, my kids pointed out that the new, air-brushed versions of mommy weren’t true to form and that in the interest of total candor, I should show the “Before” pictures.
So, my younger son, who happens to be dangerous with an iPad in hand, took it upon himself to help me ‘get real’.
I started to worry—just a tad—when he rolled backwards on the bed and fell into a gasping fit that would have had me dialing 911 if it weren’t for his snorts and guttural shrieks of laughter as he served as my professional photographer. Have I mentioned that I hate him?
Anyway, here, I give you the artist: He’s eight.
Before his Cheerios:
Amazing, that airbrush, huh?
And now, there is me… Before my coffee:
After a big cup of coffee and a bit of photo magic:
Which one is the real me? Depends on who you ask and what mood I’m in. Anyway, to all this digital photo nonsense I say, “Pppfffffftttttt!” Give me a Polaroid Instamatic any day. Waiting for the picture to appear? Now THAT was some good times.
I have been hearing about Voodoo Donuts now, for several years as it is one of Portland’s weirder tourist attractions. Because we had a fieldtrip to go downtown to Powells Bookstore, my kids talked me into a sugar fest, first. After all, we needed the energy to prowl Powell, as it takes up an entire city block. When we got to Voodoo Donuts, there in showcase was a giant, chocolate covered, cream filled…phallus. And, of course, my 13-year-old son wanted that. It was huge and he’s in a growth spurt. Luckily, he’s still relatively innocent as to the crudities of the world and I’d like to keep it that way for as long as possible. So, when, eyes shining, he pointed to the confection, I had to intervene, sotto voce, and ask the girl behind the counter if there were any non-penis shaped donuts that still offered the same ingredients.
HOW SICK IS THAT?
Wendy, I feel for you with the whole Ben and Jerry’s Shweddy Ball ice cream outing you wrote about in your last post. And now, Cock ‘n Ball Donuts from Voodoo Donuts? Is this advertising tactic supposed to tempt me? Aside from sounding vaguely diseased, odorous and bug infested, I ask you, what is the world coming to? Have we become a society that cannot consume our food and entertainment without referencing our crotches? Wendy and I have been talking, and are starting a list of Doody Heads who feel that the only way they can make money is to drag our kids into the sewer. And, before you call me a prude, just know, I’ve been to the sewer. Used to live there. It made me, and those around me miserable. I’m a reformed sewer rat and trust me when I tell you, life is better without all the sleaze.
I’m mad as heck and I’m not gonna take it anymore. Ben and Jerry’s? DOODY HEADS! Voodoo Donuts, DOODY HEADS! Somebody out there, offer me a Hero sandwich with a side of Good ‘n Plenty.
At our house, we have a ghost child. His name is Jimmy. Jimmy is a clumsy, stupid child with an evil sense of humor. Jimmy is the one who makes huge, horrible, malodorous poop in the toilet, and never flushes. Jimmy is the one who never, ever puts a lid back on anything and in fact, hides or throws the lid away. When he actually manages to clean up after himself, he perches the lidless jar/bottle/tub at the very edge of the refrigerator shelf and carefully closes the door so that when some unsuspecting innocent wants to make dinner, BLAM-O! Broken, splattered, wasted, whatever…everywhere. Jimmy is also the one who leaves the lights on in both the house and car, leaves the doors unlocked, leaves the heater on and the door wide open. Jimmy uses the last of the shampoo/toilet paper/dry towels without replacing them. He has broken a Wii, lost cell-phones and iPods, screwed up our computers, scratched DVD’s…If it’s costly and irritating, you can be sure Jimmy did it, because none of my perfect darlings would ever be so dastardly. Or so they tell me.
It puzzles me, how Matt and I managed to raise 5 relatively perfect teenagers, and yet put up with the boorish behavior of this ill-mannered ghost. If we simply got rid of Jimmy, imagine how seamless our lives would be!
In fact, as I list my grievances against Jimmy, I am experiencing a bit of a hot flash. I think I’ll just run to the store for some garlic and a silver bullet. Invite Bill Murray and Dan Ackroid over for dinner… I’ll let you know how it goes.
My 8-year-old son allowed his 13-year-old sister to paint his nails. Why? Wondered what they’d look like with red/brown polish.
Unfortunately, we have no polish remover.
Now, he has a sleepover date with the kids next door and no way to get the polish off his nails. So, never one to be daunted by life’s inconveniences, he invents a story that will explain the rogue color on his fingertips and retain his masculinity.
“I’ll just tell ‘em that it’s blood. You know, from picking my nose.”
I’m just so proud.
Jeff Foxworthy’s Redneck Dictionary offers a crash course in southern slang. Here are a few of his examples that got me to thinking about writing a book of my own:
bay • ou (bi´-ü), v. and n. to purchase for another. “I just walked right up to her and said, ‘Hey darlin’, lemme bayou a drink.’
doo • dle (düd´-el), n. and v. a male person and his predicted actions. “Don’t even look at him, ’cuz that doodle kill you.”
tor • toise (tort´-es), v. and n. to have imparted knowledge or wisdom to a group. “That stupid teacher never tortoise nothin’.
As handy as this book no doubt is, a conversation I overheard in my car the other day has me guessing more American households could use a Teen Slang Dictionary
I thought I’d begin with two phrases that initially had me stumped:
1. Annie Slike and 2. iMall Ike.
1. “And, he said.” (Literally, “And he is like.”)
2. “I said.” (Literally, “I am all like.”)
Used in conversation:
iMall Ike “Where?”
Annie Slike “There?”
iMall Ike “Okay.”
Annie Slike “See ya.”
We welcome your additions to Toohotmama’s Teen Slang Dictionary, cuz iMall Ike excited about this project, no waddam een?
As Wendy mentioned in yesterday’s blog, we are huge fans of Ree Drummond’s Pioneer Woman Blog. That big old ranch and the simple life-style… I always wanted to be a pioneer woman as a kid. Live in a covered wagon, you know, one of them Prairie Schooners. Yeehaw. Until I got in one once and couldn’t find the electrical outlet. How do you plug anything in? Discovered I’m a modern girl at heart. With one exception.
TEACHING MY DAUGHTER TO DRIVE.
If only I was teaching her to drive a Prairie Schooner. If you were a fly on the windshield of our car, this is what you’d see/hear on any given day lately:
Me, praying: “Our Father, who art in heavennnn Eeeaaauuuuggggghhhh!!!!! Loook out!”
“Did you not see the people on the sidewalk, there?”
“Yes! I saw them!”
Me, panting: “Good. Just checking.”
“Sure.” Deep breaths. “Okay. Get off their lawn and back onto the road. Okay. No, really, that’s okay. You’re fine. Just get out of their living room and back on the road. Oh, dear Jesus, forgive me for every sin I committed since my last driving session with my daughter, Lord. Forgive me for those words I uttered in that intersection back there… Mother of Godzilla!!! LOOK WHERE YOU ARE GOING!”
“Mom! Chill! I’m in control!”
“And, Lord, should I die, soon…”
“You’re really not helping, Mom.”
Darling, have I mentioned that we are not in England? Nor are we in Australia. No, no, darling, we are in the good old United States, where we drive on the right side of the road. The Right. The RIGHT! The OTHER RIGHT!”
“Isn’t this a one way street?”
I bet you always wondered how to spell that guttural sound you make just before you die in a thunderous ball of fire. I’m pretty sure that’s it, give or take a few h’s.
Ah, for the days of the 2 horse-power covered wagon. Ree, we think you’re on to something.
I know a lot of people think Michelle Duggar is a tad over the top by having baby number 20 at age 45. But, as an older mother of only 5 children, I have to say I stand in awe. I, too, had an infant when I was 45. I gained 35 pounds with him, and he was adopted. After the first week, I crawled out of the house and bought the book, What to Expect the First Year. I was in peri-menopause and couldn’t remember what I was supposed to expect. The book said, “Should be able to hold head up by week three.” Uh…no. I couldn’t do that until he was six weeks, and even then I needed help. At week five, it stated, “Should be able to focus on, and pick up a raisin.” Still working on that one, and it’s been 8 years, although I have mastered mini-Snickers.
After he was born, I decided to skip the whole infant thing altogether with my next bundles of joy, figuring I’d just go out and get a couple of darlings that were already able to fix their own breakfast, so we adopted through foster care. Michelle, seriously, give it a shot. It’s super rewarding and much easier on the body.
I look at Michelle and Jim Bob’s family and wish I had heard of them back when I was first starting my family. First of all, they name all their kids with names beginning with the letter “J”. As an older mom, I think this is brilliant. I can’t even remember my name on most days so when my little darling holds up a drawing of a blob, I can boldly say, “Why J.J.! That’s an amazing…thing you drew there!” Secondly, from experience, I can tell you that simply getting my hair combed on any given soccer or piano day is a major accomplishment and Michelle looks awesome. If I’d birthed 20 kids, I’d look like Jaba the Hut’s ugly step-sister. Thirdly, the fact that she has any kind of libido left at all is a testament to her supreme dedication to grow her family.
Michelle and Jim Bob Duggar take a lot of flack for raising and taking care of and an interest in every single one of their beautiful children. I know a lot of parents who only have one kid who couldn’t tell you where they were or what they have written on their Facebook pages. Would I recommend giving birth to 20 children? Heck no! But would I want to be a part of their family? I’m waiting for them to discover adoption. And, when they do, I want to be first in line.
Writing a novel with a tight, two month deadline with 5 kids 3 dogs and 1 husband in the house leads to some interesting conversations:
“Not now, darling, I’m in the middle of killing someone.”
“Honey, where are my car keys?”
“I…uh…huh? What are sharkies?”
“What’s for dinner, mom?”
“I don’t know. What did you make?”
I have written on a plane, I have written on a train, I have written when I’m hot, I have written on the pot.
I have written during a meal, I have written as I deal, I have written as I walk, I have written as I talk, I have written as I sleep, what I write has made me weep.
What I write has made me glad, what I write has made me sad, but what does all this mean to you? It means it’s something You can do!
You can do it when you’re busy, you can do it in a tizzy. You can write it as you fight, you can write it late at night.
Write that book, just write it now. Take a look, I’ve shown you how.
There is no excuse as you can see, for not writing. Just ask me.
So I get to Maui and the three Barbie dolls I travel with have all joined Weight Watchers. Have I mentioned that one of them used to be (and still could be) Miss Kansas?
Then it dawned on me. The reason I’m shaped like the cabbage patch kid and am wearing a swim Burka that I had imported from Babylon, is because I’M NOT ON WEIGHT WATCHERS! Duh! So, my slim and trim and ever-so-energetic, bikini wearing friends DRAG ME TO A MEETING. While I’m on vacation. So, now there is much guilt involved with every chocolate covered macadamia nut I stuff into my face. Did you know that there are 6 points in only 4 lousy, teensy-weensy candies? And did you know that there are an entire days worth of points in only one box?
So, Wendy. Before I fly George up for your Birthday bash…oh, the plans I have for you…I’m going to drop a few pounds. Thankfully, I have eaten all of the Mauna Loa candy, so that’s out-of-the-way.
And, to make things a little more interesting, my daughters are going to ‘race’ me to the finish line. They jumped onto the Weight Watcher’s Band-wagon with gusto and have already lost 2 pounds each. I have lost none. But then again, slow and steady wins the race.
Check out my new diet page (hopefully up by this weekend) and read what the girls have to say about living with me on a diet! Big, big fun.
Happy birthday, hot mama! You have finally caught up with me and George, age-wise! As you may have ascertained by now, I am arranging a special outing for you, with Georgie-Porgie-Puddin-Pie
Cloonster to celebrate your milestone. I guess you could say that this is not really your gift, as much as it is Georgie’s. It’s high time that he experiences some superlative conversation with a seasoned woman of a certain age and not the bimbo-prattle he’s used to.
And, what do I have planned for your Mystery Dream Date?
First, I’m going to fashion a gourmet meal for you both from products made by our favorite company in the universe (are you listening, John Lilly?) PILLSBURY! I have perfected an appetizer, main course and dessert from the dough boy’s spectacular array of delicious and easy to prepare products!
Then, after a sumptuous repast, I will put you both in my mini-van (aka: THE SKOW) and drive you to the Red-Box to pick out the movie of your choice. Red vines and popcorn are on me! (Score points by picking something starring George and not your husband, the lesser known, but not lesser talented actor, Tim Blough, Wendy).
After the movie, it’s time for Yoo-hoo and PILLSBURY cake with PILLSBURY frosting adorned with fifty candles! Make a wish, darlings! (Wendy, this would be a good time to wish that we finally WIN the PILLSBURY BAKE OFF!!! Because, hell-freaking-oh, we aren’t getting any younger).
Then, Wendy, I really need you to have some intellectually-stimulating conversation with this misled boy, who seems to think that women cease to exist after they are 21. Show him some sparkling banter, dazzle him with your brilliance, keep him on the edge of his seat with your wisdom and charm!
Then, like a salmon at spawning time, we’ll turn him loose and hope for the best.
I’ll be on hand, the entire evening to document every moment in pictures and post them here to share in an exclusive blog with our lucky
Hang tight, darling. I’ll be home from celebrating your birthday on Maui soon to gather George and pick you up for your whirlwind evening. In the mean time, Ha-ah-ah-uu-ah-moo-moo-ah-poo-poo (as they say here on the islands) and many more! (The poo-poo part becomes very important, once you’re past 50…)
Aloha, girlfriend, welcome to the 50′s!!
This morning, I got a message from Chase on my cell phone: Credit Fraud Alert! Did you attempt to steal $160 on your credit card? If yes, reply “yes”. If no, please reply “no”.
Are they serious? Why on earth would I admit to trying to steal money if I had stolen it? Why on earth would I admit to trying to steal the money, if I hadn’t stolen it?
That’s what I call a lose/lose kind of question.
Because I am in Maui to celebrate the birth of my dear sister/friend, Wendy (yes, it’s that time of year again) I went to the store and bought a weeks worth of groceries and supplies, but neglected to tell my credit card company I was on the move.
Anyway, today is Wendy’s last day of being in her 40’s. Tomorrow, she moves into her 50’s with the rest of us. I’m just so sorry she isn’t here for the big party I throw for her every year.
Tomorrow, I’m going to announce my amazing gift to her so you’ll want to stay turned!
When I first saw this headline, I thought, “Isn’t that nice? Some good Samaritan gave up their dreams of victory to stop and help a pregnant woman deliver a baby.”
The Marathon Runner had the baby. She ran during contractions. At 39 weeks. Here is a snippet of this insanity:
Amber Miller, 27, had competed in two races while 17 weeks pregnant. But on Sunday she combined two major events in one day. Running while 39 weeks pregnant, she finished the marathon in 6 hours and 25 minutes, then gave birth to a baby girl about seven hours later. Miller said she didn’t feel any ill effects from her 6-hour and 25-minute effort during the marathon, except sore feet and a few blisters. She set an easy pace, running two miles, walking the next two — finishing three hours off her personal best for a marathon. “I don’t feel anything from the marathon, but I do feel what you’d expect after giving birth,” she said during a Monday press conference.
Hearing this ruined my day. Now, complaining about a hangnail doesn’t seem like a good enough excuse to skip out on exercising. Apparently, unless I’m in the throes of labor, I have no excuse. And, because labor is a thing of the past for me, I suppose any excuse that would put me in the hospital now…doesn’t cut it. Thanks a lot, Amber.
Heart failure? Shake it off.
Stroke? Just do it.
Amputation. No pain, no gain.
Amber, it’s people like you, who make the rest of us look bad.
Folks, it should also be noted, that Amber ran a marathon with her other two pregnancies, but only up till 17 weeks.
So, Amber, we can see that you are in the mode to stretch yourself. What’s next? You have the baby at the half way mark, strap the kid into a jogger and press on till the finish?
And…how would you top that? Give birth to your twin grandchildren during a marathon?
I wouldn’t put it past you.
Yesterday, I was standing in the grocery line at Wal-Mart, striving to appear as if I was not reading the tabloid covers, but come on, I was at Wal-Mart? Just call me oxy-moron. Anyway, I see that poor Kate Middleton has hit a bit of a rough patch and that got me to thinking: Do I really have the chops to represent the USA as her Queen? Let’s weigh the pros and cons, shall we?
There have been kidnapping threats.
Demands to give Wills a baby.
Extreme weight loss.
Now, lets examine the cons…
That does it. I’m in.
My greatest fear—or—given our current culture of crude ‘reality”—asset, would be hoof-in-mouth disease or even worse…being thought too common. For example, I recall the horrifying moment when Lady Di was presented with something made of china as a gift and she had the audacity, gasp!! to turn it over and look for the label. Tres gauche! I just wanted to curl up and Di.
I don’t know my Waterford from a hole in the ground, so Di was light years more savvy than me and she still had people fainting over her horrendous faux pas. I can only imagine what the good people will say when I serve baloney boats and Coke at my coronation. And my youngest daughter can belch like a long-shoreman, so…guess I’m gonna have to speak to her about that before my big day.
Joyce, I agree about the Facebook thing, so that’s my number 2 item for change. Keep ‘em coming, people. What good is having a queen, if she can’t make life a little easier for us all?
In my recent quest to ascend to the position of Queen of the USA, it has been brought to my attention that I will need to ‘qualify’. Here is the list of reasons I feel that I qualify for the job:
1. Bossy on my first through fifth grade report cards.
2. Talks too much. On all report cards. Communication skills, huh? Huh?
3. I have five children. Right there is proof I can run a country.
4. Mockable body parts!
5. Plenty of skeletons to drag out of the closet for more tabloid fodder. (Misspent youth will finally come in handy).
6. I will invent some skeletons when the real ones run out. As a novelist, I have ideas that will shock, as well as please.
7. Number one son is an awesome athlete and polo will be a piece of cake.
8. That hat that Beatrice wore to Will and Kate’s wedding? I have one. And it’s bigger.
9. I like tea. Those little cakes are delicious.
10. Three daughters for more televised wedding fun!
Now, I am still working on my platform for change. So far, I have the number one slot filled with the whole charger cord issue, however, I would be a Queen who listens to the people. So. People. What should we change? There is so much to think about, my head is whirling. Palace or condo? Throne or Lazyboy? Carriage or van??
I welcome all thoughts,
You know the ditty about wearing purple when you’re an old woman? I don’t think we should wait. I think we should chop up our Nordstrom’s cards (all right, full disclosure: My “Nordstrom’s” card says, “Marshall’s,” but you get my drift) and start shopping anyplace that sells white tights with bold red stripes in Queen Size.
I don’t know about you, but I have spent an inordinate amount of time in my life attempting to be appropriate. If you are a parent, you surely recognize that word.
“Sweetie, it’s not appropriate to cartwheel during communion.” (Or maybe it is?)
“Darling, it is not appropriate to see if a person can drink orange juice through a straw stuck up her nose…. I don’t care if your if your father is doing it, it’s not appropriate in a restaurant. Tim, stop encouraging her.”
Of course I think it’s important for parents to provide a bumper, of sorts, along the road to their kid’s maturity, bouncing them back onto the path when they stray too far, but now that my daughter is growing up, I’m already missing her little girl ways. A recent example:
She grew a few inches this summer, so I asked her to sort through her clothes and set aside the items she could no longer wear. She came out of her room dressed in white tights with fat red stripes. I hadn’t seen those in a couple of years.
“From now on, Mom, I want solid colors, not stripes or flowers. It’s more grown up.”
“Okay.” I sighed, thinking she looked so dang cute in her Cat-In-The-Hat tights. “We’ll get solid colors.”
“Hose, not tights.”
“Ah. Hose.” I nodded, the sadness undeniable.
“Yeah.” She looked down. Gave her striped legs an affectionate stroke. “I could still wear these sometimes, though,” she ventured. “But just to special occasions. Like weddings.”
“Yes, that would be awesome.”
Do you know of any weddings we could crash? ‘Cause I really want her to wear those tights again before it’s too late. I’ll be wearing a pair, too, beneath my uber-appropriate wedding attire. I may have to paint the stripes on a pair of opaque white pantyhose, but I am determined to have Cat-In-The-Hat shins. Now that I’m forty-nine with a bullet, maybe I can let go of the correctness of my youth. Express myself more. Fit in less.
The Broad With The Cat In The Hat Tights
Excuuuuuuse me? This is the list of the most powerful women in the world? Hello? Wendy? Where were we? How could they neglect to mention the Queen and Crown Princess of the United States of Marriage, Motherhood and Menopause? I ask you, what could they do all day that is any more harrowing than teaching their exceedingly blond daughter how to drive when they are suffering from Menopause Symptom number 16 (see bowel/bladder control problems)?
Don’t say complex political issues and difficult paperwork, because I’m not impressed. Do they have to deal with the ENDLESS RED TAPE associated with choosing which soccer photos to order—the deluxe pro-trading cards with 2 5×7, 1 8×10 4 wallet in a pear tree or the completely useless mini-mouse pad and bobble-head coffee mug combo—when they are simultaneously trying to recall the structure of a 5 paragraph essay, WHICH WAS DUE YESTERDAY, DEAR, while under the influence of a hot flash? I think not.
Here’s a snippet on these supposed “Power-Women”, from Fortune 500 magazine: There’s been plenty of turmoil atop Fortune’s annual Most Powerful Women list. Meg Whitman crashed the party, coming in at No. 9 when she became CEO of Hewlett-Packard. (As CEO of eBay, she was on the list from 1999 to 2007.)
What party? And why didn’t we crash it, Wendy? It would have been a perfect opportunity to take George Clooney with us and show him what he’s missing by dating kindergarteners! Let’s not let that happen again, okay? Plus, this Meg Whitman actually left eBay, the shopping-palooza event of the century to go work for HP? Gack.
While Oprah Winfrey fell 10 spots to No. 16, her power and influence in flux without the platform of her eponymous syndicated talk show. [sic]
Cry me a river. And okay, what does eponymous mean, anyway? I’m sure if we had to, we could totally be eponymous.
Perhaps the biggest change of all? Kraft CEO Irene Rosenfeld takes the No. 1 position from PepsiCo chief Indra Nooyi, who topped the list for five years. This ranking is all about power, and while Nooyi runs the bigger company, Rosenfeld’s decision to split Kraft into two entities shows she has it and knows how to use it.
Try splitting an order of fries that nobody fights over, girls, now that takes skill. Here at Toohotmamas, we have it and we know how to use it, too. We just have to find ‘it’. And then… of course, use ‘it’.
So. Next year, Wendy, we’re gonna be on that list. Fortune 500, Schmortune Shmive-hundred! That’s right. Stand back, Irene. You. Me. My kid driving my minivan. On the freeway. Then we’ll see who can really hack it.
After Carolyn’s post yesterday, I probably should be throwing my tiara in the ring, lobbying to be Queen of the United States, or at least the area around my easy chair. I have been trying for ages to get my family to address me as Your Highness, but they are so resistant to change.
The thing is, I’m not the queen type. I prefer to fly slightly under the radar. Besides, I get hat head. Carolyn has really thick hair; she’ll look fabulous after the hat comes off–and it’ll probably be an adorable hat she made from a sweater or a dog bed or an empty Ritz Cracker box or something. She is brilliant at making hats. Honestly, she should have been a milliner.
So, Carolyn, you’ll have my fealty if you make me a hat.
Also, I think that when you are queen you should make George Clooney date women born before 1985. This is really important. With a Too Hot Mama on the throne, we can mandate this kind of validation for women over forty-five.
Wow. I can’t believe I once stepped in human urine while walking through Central Park with the future queen of the United States. (After the hats and George Clooney, you might want to do something about that urine situation.)
All hail Carolyn! Long may you rain… rein…reign… Well, enjoy bossing people around, dear friend.
It’s Winning Wednesday here at Toohotmamas…hang on just a sec…Okay, I’m back after having laughed myself half silly. When we came up with the harebrained idea to hold a bi-monthly sweepstakes, I thought Wendy was going to run the contest and she thought I was. We should have known it would be a disaster. Just look at all the success we’ve had with the Pillsbury bake-off contest.
Anyway, I have an idea for a contest where the contestant would be…me. I’ve been giving this a lot of thought, especially since Wills and Kate got married, and it dawned on me that we don’t have any royalty in the United States. Oh, sure, there was that whole Kennedy/Camelot thing, but come on, we all know he was the president and not the king.
Where is OUR Wills and Kate?
Celebrities, such as Queen Latifa and Burger King don’t count.
I think I would make a really good Queen for several reasons:
1. I would lobby to make all chargers (phone/iPod/etc.) USE THE SAME CORD!
2. I have plenty of cellulite to mock and plaster across tabloid covers.
3. I already have a scepter (okay, septic, so shoot me).
4. I love hats. And tiaras.
5. I really, really, really want to be Queen.
So, I’m working on my platform (think battery chargers) and am wondering if I should simply appoint myself (since Queendom is not a democracy) and throw a coronation party here, at Toohotmamas.
I welcome all ideas for change that you’d like to see added to my reform agenda. Wendy would automatically be princess (unfortunately, there can only be one queen, and it was my idea and I am older), and heir to the throne. We will have to establish a hierarchy for the kids, as they will be the ones running around creating scandal and playing polo.
Hopefully, I’ll be able to post my mission statement next Wednesday.
Long live the queen,
HRM Carolyn of Manchester.
(I love the name Manchester. Reminds me of my bra size).
Things are going to get a lot worse before they get…worse.
We made the mistake of planting an entire package of zucchini seeds this summer. They burst out of the ground like Jack’s beanstalk and each plant produced a zoogillion zucchinis.
Now, I have zucchini coming out of my ears. And other places. I’m holding a contest at my house called, “most creative use of zucchini”. Aside from the mundane zucchini casserole and zucchini bread and cake we have; zuk-kabobs, deviled zuk, zukironi and cheese, zuk au gratin, zuk cordon bleu, and zuk under glass.
We have grilled it, fried it, mashed it, baked, boiled, broiled, frickken fricasseed it. We have tried it with a fox, we have tried it in a box, we have tried it here and there, we have tried it everywhere. We do not like it Sam, I am.
We’re sick of it. I am writing this blog at a table built of zucchini and seated on a zucchini bench. I sent my youngest son to school in a pair of shoes fashioned from zucchini. I sent it to my daughter’s class to celebrate her birthday. What? The kids didn’t enjoy the piñata stuffed with zucchini? What did they want? Crook-neck? Lousy kids.
I’m thinking next year, we’re gonna win the Pillsbury Bakeoff with something made from zucchini, Wendy. Nothin’ says lovin’ like a zucchini in the oven.
Wendy and I are starting a support group for menopausal mothers. This was overheard at our first meeting:
“Hey, Wendy! How are you doing today?”
“Yes! It is windy today!”
“No. It’s Thursday!”
“Me, too. When are those cheap hotmamas gonna serve the coffee?”
I think we’re making great headway.
I just learned the COOLEST hint today from the lady at Costco. You know how, when you are in
the grocery store and you get shocked every time you touch the freezer case or anything metal? You don’t? Then you must not have shopped with my boys. They love to scuff their feet along the aisle and zap each other. And me. And unsuspecting sisters.
Anyhow, if you look closely at the bottom of your grocery cart next time you are at the store, you might see this piece of wire hanging off the cart and dragging on the ground? It’s the cart’s ground wire! If it’s not touching the ground and you are zapping and snapping up a storm, just bend it down and let it drag. Problem solved!
Oh! And another totally helpful hint? Don’t teach your teenaged daughter to drive. I am just now learning that one. More later, should I live so long.
Mom to seven-year-old: “Go to your room right now. I’m having a mood swing.”
Thanks to my peri-menopausal friend for making me laugh (even if her daughter didn’t )
Have a lovely Menopausal Monday!
Wendy and Carolyn
Ever tried to accomplish a giant task while you have company? I’m facing that …oh, what’s the word… ‘excitement’ now as I have a book deal for a rather lengthy manuscript on an extremely tight deadline.
So. My father is turning 80. On the same day, his brother is turning 82. On the same day (no, this is not a typo) my daughter is turning 13.
October 9 is a popular day to birth babies in our gene pool. Relatives are flying in from the four corners of the earth to celebrate.
What with me being in menopause and having the five kids under 18 and all, I’m feeling a tad stressed. However, I am nothing if not organized and I love to delegate. So, I’m thinking I’m going to ask for a little help. They say it’s one of the hardest things a person can do, this asking for help business. To that, I say, “Heeeeeeellllllllllllppppppppp!”
Yeah, yeah, yeah, grandpa is turning 80. Big whoop. He can make the spaghetti. Aunt and Uncle are clean freaks, they can tackle the pantry. My cousin and her daughters are creative and love to talk/tell stories. I’m passing out plot cards when they walk through the door and sending them off to enjoy some quiet time and a jolly good writing exercise. We can discuss character arc at the party, and goal, motivation and conflict over dessert. After the gifts are open, everyone will get a party favor pencil and go to work. Scenes for the kids, chapters for the adults.
That oughtta gitter done. By the time I have to take them to the airport, I should be able to swing by the post office and mail the completed manuscript, therefore giving two birds the old one/two punch with one stone.
I added the Sexy Older Women part, because believe it or not, I just read an article where somebody took the time to research the top words in blog titles that people search and the winner was: SEXY OLDER WOMAN.
Wow. So, even if your blog is about say, Home-school Curriculum or Colonoscopy or Boy Scouts, or Federal Agriculture you should try to work these words into the title. Mind boggling, huh?
Anyway, Wendy has some awesome ideas about helping people with Menopausal Attention Deficit to make simple and nutritious fare. But, since I don’t want her to do all the blog work, I’m going to share my thoughts on fun food this Friday.
Eat a box of Wheat Thins. I’m doing it now. As I type this blog! Simple. Nutritious. Less than 5 seconds to prepare. If the old adage, “You are what you eat” is true, you will wake up in the morning thin and golden brown. That’s what I’m going for. Carolyn