Category Archives: utterly random

random comments that stuck

It’s been a rough week. Back to school kicked my arse. I’m so ready for the routine to be routine again. But until then, I’m remembering back to random comments various people have said that made me happy.

1. An umpire in the softball league I played in a few (cough, ten) years ago used to call me Hoover because he said I scooped up everything on my side of the field.

2. A Sociology professor in college who called me in to explain that my paper merited an A+ but that he was forced to give me an A- because it was tardy. He was beside himself. (I focus on the A+ part, and I knew my grade was safe, even if I lost points for being late.)

3. When anyone I know tells me they like my blog. I usually shrug compliments off, but I’m trying to be better about accepting them graciously.

4. When a highly intelligent person whom I have great respect for admitted they got a D in Chemistry to make me feel better about the D I got in Economics.

5. When my children both want me to put them to bed (even though bedtime is a total PITA) because it means I’m doing something right.



car wash

Like most car owners in the continental US, my van has picked up a few months worth of salt and dirt. Two weeks ago when we had the first warm-up, I happily said “Yes” to the automated gas station machine that asked if I wanted a car wash.

Then I turned around and saw the line of 18 cars ahead of me, at which point I pulled into a parking spot and went inside to ask how long my code was good for. They told me a week. No problem. They also mentioned that since the car wash is open 24 hours, that late evenings and early mornings were the best times.

I checked back four times over the next few days. There were always at least three cars in line, so I figured I’d come back.

One time I went by and saw no cars in line and swooped in for my turn only to find a repair van working on the car wash.

One evening after a dinner out with the family, I thought about trying to go through the car wash, but both kids had drunk two milks each at dinner (my husband is a big fan of free refills) and I was afraid one of them would pee with all that water. Getting the outside of the car washed wouldn’t really help if the inside was a puddle.

Finally, one day when I had 20 minutes to spare before meeting Nick’s bus I got in line to wait behind only one car. I punched in my code and waited for my turn.

The car in front of me somehow forgot to leave when his car wash was over and ended up staying in for mine too. Grrrr. I called inside the gas station with the number that was posted on the car wash machine. Much to my relief, they kindly gave me another code so that I could stay in line. Except when I pulled in, the machine kept telling me to pull forward. I pulled forward and then back and then forward and then back. After 3 minutes of driving in the car wash I pulled around the front and went it.

I explained that the car wash wasn’t working and that my code hadn’t worked and that the I had been trying to get my car washed for a week and I was losing my patience. She asked if I wanted another code or my money back. I took my money and no one got hurt.

The next time I got gas, I pushed the “No” button with a little too much glee. By then I had decided to wash the damn car in my drive way with a bucket and the hose.

It ended up being too cold to bucket wash and the dirt and salt were now taunting me every time I looked at the van. Nick and I ran errands today and ended up with 30 minutes to kill. I decided to give the car wash one more shot. I pulled up to the machine to enter my debit card. Ha ha ha ha. The machine only takes cash or a code. So I get my wallet out. I am lucky enough to find a $20. Ha ha ha ha. The machine takes quarters, dollars, fives and tens. But not twenties.

So I pull though the car wash AGAIN and pull up to a gas pump. I just got gas a few days ago, but didn’t fill it all the way up because it was cold and windy. So I pumped my 8 gallon minimum (barely), got my dollar discount and a new code.

Nick and I pulled around, punched in the code (after the car in front of us LEFT) and got the freaking car washed.

So yeah, I haven’t felt very productive for the last few weeks. Between being a touch stressed, having a sick kiddo and spending two weeks of my life on a 3-minute car wash, I’m ready for March.


Thankful: the 2010 edition

I have so, so much to be thankful for. These are just a few random things that I feel like mentioning today:

I am thankful for the “Who’s on first?” routine I often have with my son. Especially since there was a time we didn’t know if he would talk.

I am thankful for the stubbornness of my daughter. It means she listens to me and wants to be just like me.

I am thankful that I survived five hours as a passenger. In the rain.

I am thankful I got to choose what to sign up to make for Thanksgiving (an appetizer and a dessert) and wasn’t responsible for the whole meal.

I am thankful when I offered extra help, I was given the job of taking the cranberries out of the can. That’s right up my alley.

I am thankful for boxes of 64 Crayola crayons with the built-in sharpener.

I am thankful for wonderful neighbors who are feeding our kittens and loving on them until we get home.

I am thankful they make “classic” versions of Monopoly and Sorry that do not require batteries.

I am thankful that every day I am able to plod through my to-do list, prattle away on my computer, photograph my children, and dream up new ideas of what I’d like to do next.

spare time

Helllloooooo. Not going to do the long apology for not being here more often. Just going to say, my house is a little bit cleaner, my family is eating a little bit healthier, I have done a bit more exercising, and I am knee-deep in a few projects. Can’t say that the trade-off thrills me, because I dearly miss writing every day, but I’m working out the kinks and hope to be back to a more regular pattern of posting soon. (You don’t even want to see my poor overloaded reader.)

I say we all make a pact to not EVER discuss vomit. Ever. You in?

We are back to waiting to see if Nicholas will qualify for Early Intervention Services. The whole process has been very easy on Nick and quite torturous on me. I had finally wrapped my brain around the fact that these services are needed and would be quite beneficial and then on the last of five evaluations kind of got the feeling that he was not going to qualify. So we wait.

Watching your child be tested (playing to him, but testing nonetheless) and wanting him to do poorly is such a hard thing to explain. I want nothing more than happiness for my children and success is usually all rolled up in that ideal. So rooting for him to fail is a tough thing mentally. Wanting him to fail, but only to a certain degree, so that he fails the test now but is actually able to get the help that will keep him from failing in the future. Brain soup.

So we wait.

Maggie has decided that for her birthday she would like to have a sleep-over for all 16 children in her class. When I stop laughing I will have to come up with an equally enticing plan that involves a maximum of three hours. It’s weird to even be thinking about planning her sixth birthday party. How is that possible? And soon she will be a first-grader. Make it slow down!

Note to self

Just a quick list of some things I have learned today:

1. If you want the cookies that you give to the neighbors for the holidays to be perfect, don’t make it a project for you and your five-year-old.

2. The neighbors don’t need perfect cookies. They will be perfectly happy with the artwork of a five-year-old.

3. When you wear a brand new sweater, check it first for the “remove before wearing label.”

4. If you are going to buy two new pairs of jeans when you are feeling super skinny, make sure at least one pair has a little wiggle room.

5. Don’t keep the toothpaste and the Desitin in the same drawer. Just don’t.

6. Don’t ask for an opinion to confirm something you are 99% sure of, unless you are prepared for the other person to 100% disagree.

7. If your husband starts eyeing the wallpaper in yet another room, speak up before he starts peeling. It does neither of you any good to criticize when the walls are half-stripped.

8. Don’t tell your child about a surprise party and then send her to the guest of honor’s house with instructions “Not to talk about it.” Even if she doesn’t talk about it, you will be a nervous wreck.

That’s all.

too much to do

I thought by now, already into October, that I would have a better grip on my time.  I thought these magical free days would leave me knocking long-awaited chores off my three-year-old to-do list.


Somehow I find myself busier and busier.  A few of the things keeping me busy are deadlines that will soon pass (unfortunately all volunteer, not for pay) and I will get to move on to the next thing.

I have walls to paint.

I have rooms to organize.

I have books to read.

I have articles to write.

I have naps to take.

And none of it is getting done.  At least, not yet.  But I still have high hopes.  Just maybe not sky high.   A more reasonable high.  Maybe I should set my hopes very, very low, so that I am more likely to gain momentum.

Maybe I’ll just go have some chocolate and see what happens.

Sunday pm

I love being alone on a Sunday night when the rest of the family is asleep. I can’t even put into words how it feeds my soul.

If puttering was a profession, I would be a master putterer.  I love to putter.  And tinker. I would like to be a professional tinkering putterer.

Two posts I think everyone should read:

health care


Have a peaceful night.