Thursday, September 30, 2010

Rainy Day = Nappy Time

I was up late last night, unable to calm my mind and fall asleep.  My mind was racing.  My head was filled with thoughts of buffet lamps, storage trunks and an affordable couch to fill the huge empty area in our upstairs living room.  I've been bit by the decorating bug again.  And, as usual, the bug bites at the most inopportune times.  You know, like when I'm about to fall asleep or after I just paid off a ginormous credit card bill.

The good news is that you can shop online at any time of the night.  I stumbled upon some potential purchases: a big storage trunk for our bedroom to house all of Craig's junk that currently resides on the floor next to his side of the bed.  And also some black buffet lamps (for $13 a piece, hooray for Target) to place on the pair of black bookshelves I have in my kitchen.  I didn't buy anything last night, but my desire to purchase some new things has been properly fueled by my late night browsing. 

The trunk is not a necessity, but I sure would like to find something for Craig to stash his stuff in.  Otherwise, he is met with disapproving frowns every time I enter the bedroom. The buffet lamps are sort of a necessity because as the sun starts setting earlier and earlier, the eat in portion of our eat in kitchen gets awfully dark.  We don't have proper overhead lighting in that portion of our kitchen, so the lamps will provide some light and ambiance.  And who doesn't want an ambient kitchen?

Anyway, the pouring rain coupled with the effects of my late night internet perusing left me feeling a wee bit sleepy this afternoon.  My living room might be missing a couch, but, on the bright side, I found the vast area of carpet covered nothingness to be the ideal nap spot.

It was a good nap.  Short, but sweet.  However, as usual, I woke from my nap with a fiery hunger.  Unfortunately that fiery hunger lead me to do some major damage to the contents of our pantry.  I devoured a few handfuls of gingersnaps followed by a bowl of cereal equal to my body weight.  And somewhere in there I ate a spoonful or two of Nutella.  Ugh.

On the bright side, Craig and I are running again tomorrow, so I suppose I can just call my snack "carb loading."

Um, yeah.  Carb loading.  That's what I'll call it.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Dropping the G

Have you heard of dropping the g?  In case you're not sure, dropping the g is a virulent problem which is quite prevalent in text messaging and also on the various social networking sites.  In our society, where instant gratification is the name of the game, you'll see a lot of g dropping.   People are just too busy to include the g. 

I have a Facebook friend who is a g dropper and while I don't hold it against this friend, I also can't help but wonder why.   Maybe it's laziness?  Or maybe this friend just doesn't like the letter g.  Whatever the case, if a word (usually a verb) ends in g, this friend  does not include it.  Doing is doin.  Going is goin.    In the grand scheme of things, dropping the g isn't a horrific offense.  No one will die from g dropping.  Cars don't collide and planes don't crash because of g dropping.  G dropping is harmless.  It's harmless, yes.  But, it still drives me kind of nuts.

How hard is it to include the last g?  Its not as if typing one extra letter is going to make your finger explode.  One extra letter won't make you late for work or keep you from your favorite television show.  It's ONE letter. 

There's no reason to hate on the g.  

Maybe I'm just an old stick in the mud, but I just can't jump on the text language, word shortening band wagon.  I know it's cool to text ur friends this way, but I just can't do it.  The nerd in me prevents it.  In fact, I will not allow Caroline to start using text language.  She thinks I'm being lame since her friends are doing it, but I told her I'm actually doing her a favor.  One day she'll thank me. 

Anyway, this is just a short (and rather random) rant on a rainy afternoon. 

Now, if u will please excuse me, I'm thinkin of goin upstairs 2 put 2gether a pile of stuff 2 donate 2 the charity truck that will be comin on October 4th.


Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Civil Disobedience + A Smoke Filled Kitchen

I found out today that I was summoned for jury duty.  But I'm not going.  Because I'm rogue like that.

Actually, I'm not going because the courthouse in which I was summoned to happens to be located 830 miles away in Florida.  Since Craig is active duty military, we're able to keep Florida as our home of record.  Among the many advantages of doing so (hello, no state income tax), I'm also exempt from appearing for jury duty.   If we did live closer, I actually wouldn't mind, especially since members of the jury get free lunch from Joe's Deli.  I do love free lunch.    Alas, the few bucks you earn with the jury duty stipend is hardly enough to cover my airfare.  Besides, Craig and Caroline would have way too much fun while I was gone.  I'm not opposed to them having a good time, but I am opposed to the lack of control I'd have over the state of cleanliness in our household while I was away.  Oh, and also the state of Caroline's hair.  Neither she nor Craig have proven to be proficient in the hair styling department, therefore, they'll have to markedly improve their barrette fastening skills before I even consider leaving them for any length of time.

"Please forgive me your honor.  I cannot attend jury duty because if I leave, my kid will most likely go to school with disheveled hair AND a dirty face.  I've mastered the hair situation, but the dirty face is something I'm still working on.  When my child is capable of getting herself to school in a well groomed fashion, I'll be happy to perform my civic duty.   Sincerely, The Neurotic Housewife."
In other news,  I'm back to my old boneheaded tricks in the kitchen.  Yesterday I accidentally let an egg slip from my grasp; today I got sidetracked by online shoe shopping and burned my green beans.  It was impressive, I tell you; the house was filled with a heavy blanket of noxious smoke.   But as impressive as it was, the smoke alarm did not go off.  I wonder if I should check its batteries?  I guess it's true:  if you don't use it you lose it.  I took it easy in the kitchen for the 6+ months Craig was gone.  Sure, we ate...including many steamed  (and not burned!)  green beans, but I still feel very out of practice.  I need to dig deep and regain my cooking mojo.   On the other hand, the rest of our dinner fared better than the green beans, so I suppose I'm not in dire cooking straights.    My groove isn't lost, it's just on hiatus.  Hopefully a short term hiatus.

The good news is that even though I'm still working on regaining my cooking mojo, I'm still quite capable of dishing up ice cream.   This is clearly a case of "practice makes perfect."

Monday, September 27, 2010

History Repeats Itself

I pretty much have nothing to blog about today, so in an effort to rouse up some sort of inspiration, I pulled up a post from this very same day last year:  September 27, 2009.  Inspiration strikes at the most random times; I have nothing to lose, so I figured it was worth a shot.

I reread the post and was amazed by how history really does repeat itself.  For instance, on September 27, 2009, I dumped half of my tea and all of Caroline's cereal down the stairs.  It also rained on that day, which resulted in a very bad hair day.  And today?  Well, I didn't dump anything down the stairs, but I did have a raw egg slip from my hands this morning, which cracked all over the floor and splattered egg guts on my foot.  Also, it's raining today; and my hair is currently in a rather unfortunate, unflattering state.

I'm sure this is all coincidence, but I'm eager to find out what I will spill next September 27th.  I'm also quite certain that even if I don't spill anything, I'll still have a bad hair day because they seem to be a  permanent fixture in my life.  Caroline's friend's mom has PERFECT hair.  No matter the time of day, her hair always looks shiny and neatly styled; even when it's windy or hot, her hair always looks the same.    How is that possible?  To be honest with you, I'm really quite envious.  I could spend hours on my hair and use every styling product and device available and I'd still have a big mess on top of my head by mid afternoon. 

But, as I often tell Caroline, life is not fair.  It's not fair in love, war, friendship or hair care.  And, as Rod Stewart once sang:  Some guys have all the luck, some guys have all the lifeless, flat, unattractive hair pain.  Some guys get all the great hair days breaks, some Alisons guys do nothing but complain.

Ack, I'm sorry.  I know this post is really better suited for the trash pile. but like I said, I'm feeling so very uninspired.  It's in moments like these, where I half-heartedly slap together a quick pile of uninteresting words (and Rod Stewart lyrics?!?), that make my lack of depth so apparent.

Can I blame it on the rain?

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Nobody Cried

And by nobody, I mean me.

Nobody got mad and threw a fit, either.  Again, by nobody, I mean me.

For the first time in the 15 years Craig and I have known each other, we ran together this morning.  Of course, for the first 13 or so years we've known each other, I had ZERO interest in running at all.  So it's not like we've been waiting and waiting for this very moment.  It just so happens that a.) we're training for a marathon  and b.) Caroline was at a sleepover birthday party this morning.  The stars finally aligned.

The run went surprisingly well; as well as running eight miles could possibly go.   I kept up with Craig's pacing and I didn't hate it.  Of course, it helps that we had some pretty great scenery to distract me from any misery.  We parked next to Ronald Reagan Airport, saw several planes take off right above our heads, and then proceeded to run across the Potomac River and into the National Mall area.  Seeing the Washington Monument on a quiet Sunday morning with nary a spectator nearby was simply breathtaking.

If you can believe me, we actually had a good time running together.  Not everyone thinks rising at 5:45 am on a Sunday to prepare to run many miles as the sun rises is "fun" but Craig and I are admittedly odd.  I'm sure watching the sunrise on a park bench, with a caramel macchiato in hand, would be considered far more enjoyable then running in the rain and, not to mention, having to use a porta potty (blech!), but we have to use (and abuse) our bodies while we still can.  We can sit on a park bench when we're ready to exchange our running shoes for sensible walking shoes.

Anyway, while Craig and I were sweating and spending the afternoon watching football and resting our legs, Caroline was in birthday party mode.  She ate pizza and cake twice this weekend AND had doughnuts for breakfast this morning.  I'm trying, rather unsuccessfully, to get her back into school mode again, but she's outside, using up what is left of the increasingly shorter daylight hours, to roller skate. 

It's back to the daily grind tomorrow.

I hope you all have had nice weekends, as well.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Stressed Out By Target

Sometimes the Target weekly sales ad stresses me out.  We receive our sales flyers (fliers?) and coupons on Saturday, separate from the Sunday paper.  This may sound totally lame, but I never read the paper.  We only receive the Sunday paper for the coupons, but since they come separately, the Sunday paper usually goes untouched.  I'm not out of the loop news wise; I keep up.  I just prefer to get my news from other sources:  TV, Internet, Twitter.  I'm so tech savvy.  Erm, or not.  Besides, when I read the Washington Post, which I've heard it referred to as the Washington COMPOST (heh!) I feel dumb.   As capable as I am of keeping up, I do have problems comprehending all the big words.  I need bullet points and Cliff's Notes to retain any of that info.

Anyway, back to the stressful Target ad.  This morning, I opened up the ad and saw that Target has a bunch of cold weather clothing on sale:  jeans, sweat pants, sweat shirts, long sleeved shirts, etc...
Even though it's awfully warm outside, I found myself thinking that I needed to go to Target to buy some winter clothing.  The truth is, I don't need any winter clothing.  Aside from a new pair of snow boots, Caroline doesn't either.  She could use a sweat suit or two, to wear on the weekends, but at this very moment, we need nothing.  I know this; I can look in our closets and have this info reiterated to me.  But the lure of $5 sweat pants and $7 long sleeved shirts is mighty strong.   I hate how glossy ads with pictures of happy children, flittering about in their comfy Hanes sweat suits makes me feel like I must drop everything and run to Target, with debit card in hand.   Because if I don't buy them NOW will they have the sweats, shirts or whatever when I actually NEED them?  If I don't buy them now, will they go on sale again?  I hate paying full price.

But is it better to pay full price for something I need, as opposed to buying something, that I might or might not need later, just because it's on sale?  I wish I could say that I'm more inclined to the former, but in all honesty, it's the latter.

I'm an advertiser's dream.

It's a lot like how the stores put out Halloween candy as soon as the back to school items are sold out.  Halloween isn't for several weeks, but every time I pass the aisles of candy, I feel like I'm behind.  Like I'm unprepared.    Ditto for Christmas.  I simply cannot think about Christmas until I've prepared the Thanksgiving turkey.   And yet, I'm already seeing the store aisles peppered with Christmas stuff.  I can't say that I feel behind yet, but I'm sure it'll happen the moment Christmas music is piped into the local store's speaker systems.  If I recall correctly,  our commissary started playing Christmas music on November 1st last year!

They don't ever let us take a moment to breathe.  To enjoy and find contentment in the present.

I can't blame the stores.  It's their job to convince us to buy things.  It's their job to prepare beautiful displays; to make us think we need the appropriate colored dishes, towels and heck, even storage bins,  to coordinate with each season. 

Anyway, this just happens to be what is on my mind right now.  We're leaving in a bit for Caroline's soccer game, then we'll be home so she can shower and head to a birthday party sleepover this evening.  Tomorrow morning, Craig and I are attempting our first run together and then Caroline has another party to attend tomorrow afternoon.  It's hard work having so many friends!

I hope you're having a great weekend.  Anything fun planned? 

Thursday, September 23, 2010

The Trouble With Being Even

I like things to be even; I appreciate symmetry; I adore balance.    I don't like the ends of a loaf of banana bread to be uneven nor do I like it when we have an odd number of graham crackers left in the package.  Now, I admit that  I use those last two examples as excuses to snack more, you know to even out a crooked edge or insure that each graham cracker has a mate.  No one likes crooked banana bread edges.  Right? 
Anyway, the trouble with liking things to be even is that when they're not even, you might tend to fixate on the unevenness.  What?  You don't?  Well, then, *I* tend to fixate on the unevenness.  But I'm sure that doesn't really surprise any of you.

I have a big fluffy pillow.  It's deep, thick, smushy, feather filled and quite comfortable.  Craig, on the other hand, prefers a thinner, sturdier, less fluffy pillow; my pillow is at least twice the thickness of his.  Not that there is anything wrong with that; we're all different creatures and therefore it's natural for us to all prefer a different kind of pillow.  Except, however, when the thin pillow messes with the whole aesthetic look (and balance) of your bed.  The pillows on my side are much more expansive than those on Craig's side because of his preference for a thin pillow.  This has bugged me for years, but there really isn't much I can do about it.  I mean, I can't make the guy use a pillow he finds uncomfortable just because his thin pillow is messing with the perfectly proportionate pillow utopia I so often strive to achieve.  That would be wrong.  I may like to have things my way, but I'm certainly not a diva about it.

Craig came home from Florida yesterday and after a night of sleep in our bed, reunited with his own pillow, he told me this morning that he no longer likes his pillow.   I was obviously thrilled...not because he was uncomfortable with his current pillow situation...but because that meant we could get a new pillow. A fluffier, thicker pillow that would help to even out our unbalanced, and slightly disturbing,  and highly disproportionate pillow issues.

We went to Target today and I'm happy to report that Craig is now the proud owner of a new pillow.  Well, he may or may not be proud; I didn't ask him his exact feelings on the situation, so I can't be certain. However, considering his general ambivalence towards things of a decorative nature, I'm guessing proud is not the correct word to use.  Anyway, Craig's new pillow is considerably thicker than his previous pillow, thereby rectifying our lop-sided pillow situation.

I'm obviously thrilled about this.  And you're probably rolling your eyes.  But that is okay with me, for I have no shame.   

That's right, I have no shame BUT I have even pillows.


Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Toe Socks and a Basket Full of Gourds

So long summer (and my wreath which has been faded by the afternoon sun).

Good bye cool green,

and hello red, brown and orange.

Welcome pumpkins,

changing leaves,

warm colors,

and a basket full of gourds.

Hooray, fall is officially here. Despite our warm temperatures, it's still a happy day. As if it needs to be said, I really love fall.

In other news, I wore my funky new toe socks this morning.

They're funny looking, for sure, but they're supposed to help prevent blisters caused by toes rubbing together.

I like my pink socks, and they are quite comfortable, but what do you think about these?


I'm not sure I have enough courage to wear those socks. They kind of remind me of being in fifth grade and participating in a "dress like Punky Brewster" day.

Maybe I'll buy the striped socks for Craig, instead. I think he's quite capable of pulling that look off. Besides, take a look at his polo shirt collection; it's pretty safe to assume that he likes stripes.


Tuesday, September 21, 2010


Up until about an hour ago, I thought today was the first day of fall.

I even pulled out my fall decorations and drank a pumpkin flavored iced coffee from Dunkin Donuts to celebrate.

Evidently, I was under this misapprehension because my supposedly reliable child, who normally possesses a steel trap memory, and forgets NOTHING, was wrong. "Tomorrow is the first day of fall," she informed me yesterday. "Today is the first day of fall," she remarked as we walked to school this morning.

Um, nice try Caroline. So much for being the constant source of accurate information this scatterbrained, forgetful and often downright oblivious mom needs.

According to the calendar, which I happen to have peered at AFTER I put out my fall decorations, the first day of autumn is TOMORROW. You might be shaking your head at me for relying so heavily on facts given to me by an 8 year old, but if you're shaking your head, you obviously don't know me very well. Thanks to my number loving (and remembering) kid, we were not late to her soccer game last Saturday. I had the correct game time of 12:45 on the calendar and yet all last week I thought the game was at 2. Even though I see the calendar several times a day and the time was written clearly and rather boldly with a Sharpie marker. Sometimes we see what we want to see, even if it isn't accurate, and if it weren't for Miss Know-It-All, we would have completely missed the game. Caroline is my right hand man. Er... girl.

So now my house is prematurely decorated for fall. That's okay, I don't mind staring at pumpkins, leaves and gourds. I'll (hopefully) share some pictures tomorrow. Tomorrow, you know, the ACTUAL first day of fall...and the day the temperatures are predicted to reach 90 degrees.

I suppose it's good to know that the weather is just as confused as I am.

Monday, September 20, 2010


Well, I did it.

Yesterday I did what I've been putting off for way too long; I officially registered for the Disney World Marathon.

Right now, I'm feeling excited, overwhelmed and a wee bit nauseous. My next step is to visit the psychiatrist, because clearly I'm not of sound mind. I'm also thinking of putting a divorce lawyer on retainer because I think this is all Craig's fault.

How dare he encourage me. How dare he support me as I challenge myself both physically and mentally.

We're both signed up for the race and I look forward to being dragged running across the finish line with Craig. But before I jump ahead to January, I have some serious training to do.


Training is the hard part. The actual race won't be a piece of cake, but with all the hoopla and adrenaline on race day, I hope it'll be enjoyable (if that's possible?). And the training? Well, running 14, 16, 18, 20 mile long runs seem daunting and a wee bit unattainable.

Craig seems to have faith in my ability; maybe some day I'll believe it too.

Our hotel reservations are complete; we have plane tickets, too. My credit card LOVES me right now. Racing isn't cheap, but I'm hopeful that the joy of the experience will more than make up for the amount of money I just sunk into this race.

Hopefully this sick, what-have-I-done feeling, I have in the pit of my stomach will subside soon. I don't know training started today and I already have a boo boo on my toe.

Note to self: after January 9th, find a new hobby.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Hanging at the Soccer Field


Before Caroline's game this afternoon, we hung out at the park adjacent to the field.


In between all the hanging, Caroline took out her earrings. Because parks are so hygienic and all. Naturally, the best place to stick your fingers near a hole in your body is at a germ infested playground. We like living on the edge.

And then Caroline hung some more.

Eventually, hanging time ended and the game began. Caroline tended goal for the whole game; the only other willing goalie was AWOL today. Caroline likes to play goalie, but the activity level of the goalie is far less than that of any of the other positions. Which is precisely why she likes playing goalie so much. She ain't no dummy!

In fact, the only exercise Caroline got during the game was running to and from the goal during the break between quarters. Oh, and running her mouth. Like mother, like daughter.

Check out her awesome goalie jersey. Stylish and ventilated.

The opposing team didn't give Caroline much opportunity to hone her goalie skills. Our team had possession of the ball for most of the game, but the one time the other team did get the ball, they scored.

That's okay, even though we were down a goal, watermelon at half time still tastes sweet, albeit a little messy.

Apparently standing in front of a soccer goal produces quite a thirst.

It was a good game, despite losing. But when it's all said and done, so long as you get a snack and a juice box at the end, it's all good.

I'm saving this picture for future teenager black mailing purposes.

Along with this one,

and most definitely this one.

Happy Saturday!

Friday, September 17, 2010

No Sticker

I voted today. On September 17th. Not on Election Day, like normal people, which isn't for another six weeks or so. I voted in my kitchen; not in a voting booth. I used a black pen, not one of those fancy voting machines. I filled in the bubbles with my black pen; I did not worry about "hanging chads."

One of the perks of maintaining my Florida residency while living where ever the Army chooses to send us, is that on Election Day I never have to stand in a long line at a polling place. In fact, since I came of voting age, 16 years ago, I have never once voted on Election Day, in an official polling place, in the state of Florida; I've always voted absentee. I even voted absentee the first time I voted, in 1996, because I was going to be in Missouri, visiting my very new husband, on Election Day.

It's actually kind of nice being able to cast my vote at my kitchen counter, while eating sunflower seeds and talking to Craig on the phone. Don't worry, I wasn't terribly distracted and I double checked and made sure I voted for the right people. I was good on the candidates, but those Constitutional Amendments are CONFUSING. The fact that I have so much trouble deciphering the wording makes me feel like a total idiot. Please tell me I'm not the only one who feels this way.

Overall, absentee voting is a great experience; the only down side is that I've never gotten an "I Voted" sticker. Nope, not once have I received a sticker. They don't include "I Voted" stickers in your absentee ballot envelope. I think they should.
On the other hand, I'm not one of those who thrives on rewards like stickers and pats on the back and I admit that wearing an "I Voted" sticker on September 17 is pretty ridiculous.

I'll just add the absence of earning an "I Voted" sticker to the long list of life disappointments I've been accruing all these years. You know, right up there with dropping out of college, possessing limited marketable skills and still not knowing what I want to be when I grow up.


Thursday, September 16, 2010

Filling Space


I have nothing to say. Really. Nothing.

I feel as though I should post something, you know, to fill up space, but the problem is coming up with something to say. Some days I could type forever, but today, this week even, I'm struggling for something to say. Having nothing to blog about is obviously a symptom of a boring life.

I can't really fabricate an exciting life (I'm not that good of an actor), so instead I'll tell you about my trip to Trader Joe's. I haven't been to Trader Joe's in a few months. Last night, as I drifted off to sleep, I was hit with an urgent desire for almond butter. I honestly felt as if I could not live another day without it, so after I stuffed the Thursday folders at school and wolfed down a quick lunch, I went to Trader Joe's. I decided while I was there to just go ahead and do my regular grocery shopping. Instead of $5 for a jar of almond butter, I spent nearly $100. I know I could have spent way less on the same purchases at the commissary but I didn't feel like going to the commissary. It's somewhat unexplainable, but some days I'd rather have a tooth pulled without lidocaine then go to the commissary. There isn't any rhyme or reason to this feeling; it's completely arbitrary. Maybe it has something to do with the moon? For whatever reason, some days I'd rather spend three times as much on groceries at any other store then go to the commissary.

I guess I can be kind of capricious. Who knew? Generally I'm so level headed.

I may have spent more money then I planned, BUT on the bright side, I bought kettle corn and kalamata olive hummus. Ooh, and a huge butternut squash and a watermelon that I dropped three times while carrying it up the stairs from my car. Thankfully the watermelon didn't split open, but as a precaution, I went ahead and cut it open and chunked it up. It's a good thing I did, because about one third of the inside of the watermelon was all smushed from all the jostling and bouncing.

I still have to go to a different store tomorrow because Trader Joes, despite its awesomeness, does not carry Diet Coke. I know! Diet Coke doesn't really fit in their overall focus on healthful, all natural food.

We can't all be perfect, Trader Joes. Hrmph.

After school I'm taking Caroline to pick out some new earrings. As the rules dictate, she has to remove her earrings during soccer games; last week Caroline learned a valuable lesson: the earrings you have your ears pierced with have extra sharp points that hurt like the dickens when you put them back in your ears. Judging by her reaction to having the earrings placed back in her ears after the game, I think it's safe to say she was having ear piercing flashbacks.

We're going to buy something less painful for this Saturday's game.

I kept reminding Caroline that we have to suffer for beauty, but she didn't find my words all that encouraging. Even tough girls have a pain threshold.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Cocktail Hour

Betcha didn't know I bring out the good stuff every afternoon. Well, as long as you consider decaf iced green tea sweetened with stevia to be the "good" stuff.

I brew the tea double strength (hello, antioxidants) and the color does resemble beer. I used to think green tea tasted like dirt, but I've grown to appreciate it a little more. It's still a bit earthy, but its health benefits are too good to pass up. I'm always looking for a way to negate the less than healthy things I put in my body (ahem, diet soda), so I drink green tea just about every afternoon. Since I've never been a beer drinker (or any alcohol for that matter), this is as close to cocktail time as I'll ever get.

It's been a slow news day around here. Slow is good. Slow is quiet. In fact, it was so quiet this afternoon that I laid down on the living room floor and started to drift off to sleep. Thankfully I woke in time to pick Caroline up from school. She generally frowns upon being stood up after school.

In other news, our anniversary ended up being uneventful, yet enjoyable all the same. Which basically means that we did not argue about something ridiculous which would inevitably cause me to huff and puff and have a bad attitude. To "celebrate" the three of us went out to dinner and then I went to Back to School Night at Caroline's school, while Craig and Caroline stayed home. Simply magical, eh? Some might think it's odd that we brought our kid out to dinner with us on our anniversary, but, we've never claimed to be conventional. We almost never go out to restaurants where you don't order at the counter, so it's hard to leave her out of the fun. Besides, Caroline is a surprisingly good dinner companion. AND she encouraged us to order a side of french fries, which proved to be a very wise decision. They were SO good; hot, crispy, salty. Since Craig and I hardly ever eat fries, it was a nice treat.

Craig left this morning on a very long drive to Florida to visit with family. He doesn't mind long car trips, which is good, because he is driving somewhere near 825 miles today. It gets boring, I'm sure, but he did rent a car that came equipped with satellite radio, so that should be helpful in keeping him occupied. Let's face it, 1-95 isn't exactly the most scenic stretch of road.

Blah. I'm really grasping for something to write. I initially didn't feel like blogging anything today, but I figured you simply couldn't live another day not knowing that my green tea looks like beer. For it is my job, as an unpaid, amateur, hack of a blogger to share with you every facet of my unfortunately uninteresting life.

I'm here to serve you.


Monday, September 13, 2010


14 years!


It's our 14th anniversary today. Fourteen looooong years. ;)

I'd say it seems like only yesterday Craig and I got married, but you know, it doesn't. So much has happened in these past fourteen years. Some times it seems like time has flown by; but some times it seems like we're not even the same people we were back then.

In many ways, that's probably a good thing. Although, I'm sure Craig would happily take back some of the hair he had atop his head back then. Oh, and the side burns. I almost forgot about those. I suppose it's a good thing we got married before digital cameras were all the rage because the few photos we have are tucked away somewhere and I'm not about to scan them.

I'll spare you the pictures, but here's the rundown: I was young (19!), in college, at least 20 lbs overweight, had a lot of frizzy hair and I wore a blue dress. Craig had hair (and Elvis side burns!) and was heavier then he is now. Perhaps we've defied the odds and improved with age? We got married in my mother-in-law's living room by a Justice of the Peace five days before Craig was due to ship off to Korea for a year. He never made it to Korea, but that's a whole different story.

Anyway, if you've been reading The Neurotic Housewife for any length of time, it won't come as a surprise to you that I am not sappy. I was born without the sappy, sentimental, squishy, gooey, Hallmark gene. I'm completely okay with this. I think other people should be as sappy as they wish; I, however, remain sap-free.

No pancakes in the shape of hearts. No lengthy handwritten love letters. No carefully picked out presents and meaningful cards. We don't have a song (well, Craig claims it is "Gangsta's Paradise" by Coolio, but I'm not so sure) and last year we took Caroline with us out to dinner to celebrate our 13th anniversary.

I'm a real chump, huh?

Actually, I consider this a big favor to Craig. If I were the romantic type, he'd happily comply, with nary a complaint, but since I do not require some sort of unbelievably high standard to be met, he's off the hook. That's not so chumpy after all. Right?

Anyway, since I am absolutely incapable of (and wholly uncomfortable with) sappy sentiment, I've decided that instead of saying something forced, I'll focus on the fact that Craig deserves some sort of medal for meritorious spousalhood. Trust me, putting up with me isn't exactly the easiest job in the universe. I'm not a high-maintenance princess by any stretch of the imagination, but my neurotic tendencies more than make up for it.

In celebration of fourteen years of marriage (and making Craig slowly lose his hair), I thought I'd list fourteen reasons why I should be thankful Craig remains my (long suffering) husband to this day.

I admit that I'm being completely honest with this list, but to be fair, you'll see an asterisk by a few of the items. That way I can defend myself. Trust me, some of these will require defense on my part.

14 Reasons Why Craig Deserves A Major Award

1. I have a hard time remembering numbers, passwords and login IDs. Last week I locked him out of our bank account because I couldn't get the password right.

2. After I drive his car, I never return the seat to the position he likes to have it in. Because I'm so short, when he gets in, his knee caps are wedged up into his arm pits.

3. I make a fuss when he opens a package of lunch meat before a previously opened package is eaten. The same thing goes for cereal boxes.

4. I never notice when he gets a hair cut.

5. The other day I have him the nastiest, most hateful, evil glare when he tried to eat my last two squares of dark chocolate.

6. When we visit Florida, we always stay with my parents; never with his mom.*

7. I refuse to watch sci-fi or fantasy movies with him. Back before Caroline was born, we'd go to separate movies because I don't like those kinds of movies. Since Caroline has been born, he goes alone, or with a movie friend (if he can find one).

8. I maintain a set of strict (and perhaps a tad unreasonable) pillow rules.

9. I don't use pet names. **

10. I don't like to share my ice cream.

11. I put away his belongings (to clear up the clutter) and then forget where I put them.

12. I make a big fuss when he tries to grow a beard and have threatened divorce if he grows a mustache. Just the other day I told him people will think I'm married to a grandpa because his beard is liberally peppered with white hair.***

13. When he was deployed I would forget to send care packages unless he reminded me. ****

14. After he was rear ended in a car accident when we lived in Hawaii, I asked how the car was before I asked how HE was!*****

Ah, a chance to redeem myself.

*--we generally stay with my parents due to logistical/space issues more than anything. Actually now we'll probably have to stay in a hotel when we visit, so this will be a moot point on our next trip to Florida.

**--the no pet names thing goes along with the anti-mush gene. I. Just. Can't. Do. It.

***--I'm not THAT mean; I was teasing him. I honestly am not a fan of facial hair of the beard/mustache variety. I'm okay with soul patches and perhaps a goatee, IF it's just a short lived experiment.

****--because Craig was on a diet when he deployed, I didn't know what to send him. Generally goodie boxes are filled with junk and I was at a loss for what to include. Now that I know what works, I will no longer need any prompting.

****--when I spoke to him on the phone after the accident, he sounded great, not in any pain and he wasn't calling from the hospital, so I KNEW that he was fine. Intuition, perhaps? If he had not sounded fine, I would not have asked about the car first. I do have a soul. :)

So after reading this list, I suspect that all of you will have a new found respect for Craig. He's a real trooper, for sure.

I guess I'm kind of lucky.

Happy Anniversary Craig!


Sunday, September 12, 2010

Drizzly 10K

Craig participated in a 10k race this morning. This overcast, grey, drizzly morning.
Obviously, these were not ideal racing conditions, but thankfully the heavier early morning rain stopped, providing the racers with a bit of a reprieve. The weather was beautifully sunny and mild all week long and will also be that way next week, but not today. I'm sure the race coordinators were just cursing the weather gods for their unfortunate luck.

Despite the rain, plenty of people showed up to run. As usual, Caroline and I donned our running cheerleader hats and waited on the side lines for Craig to finish the race. And, of course, in my typical air headed fashion, I forgot the camera. We flew out the door this morning and I just didn't remember to grab it. It was kind of gross outside anyway, so I suppose you're not missing much.

After we sent the runners off on their 6.2 mile trek, Caroline participated in a 1 mile fun run. She started out fast, but ran out of steam a bit too early. She finished strong, however, and had a good time. I guess that's all that matters.

Craig, my aging (ooh, so cold!), yet increasingly speedy husband did quite well. He ran the 10k in just under 40 minutes, coming in 7th overall. I'd like to go on record saying that I'm pretty sure Craig ran so fast because I made demanded encouraged him to shave off the post-deployment, 30 days of leave, beard he was growing with the sole purpose of annoying me. Less wind resistance, right? Anyway, the winner, some spindly college kid ran the race in around 32 minutes. Ugh. How is it even possible for bodies to move that quickly?! I suppose I'll never really know because my own body is completely incapable of moving with such speediness.

I'm the tortoise. Slow and steady.

Anyway, the race was a lot of fun and I'm glad Craig had the opportunity to participate. While at the event, I ran into several people I know from my gym and they asked why I wasn't running, since they always see me running at the gym. I would have raced, but that kid of ours just cramps my style. When she's older and capable of staying home alone, I'll race more. Until then, we'll be the cheerleaders and absent minded, incompetent photographers.

It's a pretty dreary day, but I don't mind much at all. In fact, I'm using this time to do some baking for Craig's co workers. They've missed me and I need to treat them right. I think cream cheese swirl Heath bar brownies and browned butterscotch blondies will do the trick.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Emotionally Exhausted

Whew, we just got back from Caroline's first soccer game of the season. Man, am I exhausted. It's kind of sad that I'm so tired when I didn't run up and down a big field for 40 minutes with the sun beating down on my head; I just stood there and cheered. But still, I'm completely wiped out. And I little bit hoarse.

Caroline played goalie for the first half of the game and being the parent of the goalie is nerve wracking, to say the least. I was never so happy to see her pass on the goalie gloves and jersey to her halftime replacement. Talk about pressure....

The girls have moved up into the next division, which is all fine and dandy EXCEPT the field is much bigger than it was in 2nd grade. Aside from the added pressure of a bigger field and the endurance needed to go with it, Caroline's first game was played against the team her two friends, Bailey and Rachel, are on.

Craig told Bailey and Rachel this morning that they had to score goals for Caroline's team or they would no longer be permitted to come to our house and eat our snacks.
Bailey and Rachel didn't hold to their end of the bargain, but the game ended in a 1-1 tie, so we'll let it slide. Neither Caroline,Bailey or Rachel scored the goals, which, in my opinion, is a really good thing. Seriously, if one of them had scored and the others did not, the tension would be palpable.
I'm not big on palpable tension or any other school girl drama, so I'm really quite thankful for the outcome of this game.

Not only am I emotionally exhausted from our afternoon at the soccer fields, I'm also a grade A airhead for forgetting my camera. You'd think I would have learned by now. If it's any consolation, my camera, which is housed in the drawer of a sofa table in our living room, is blocked off by a massive web of blankets and chairs which, I'm told, is a house for fairies and wizards. Um, ok?

The weather has been particularly pleasant lately, which made today's soccer game all the more enjoyable. I keep thinking back to the end of the spring season and Caroline's Father's Day soccer tournament when the temperatures reached into the high 90s. Today's mid 70 temperatures were just lovely.

I guess that's all I have to say for now. I hope you're all having a great weekend, too.

Friday, September 10, 2010

So Long Summer Bounty

I'm not a big fan of summer and NOT just because when school is out Caroline and her friends camp out here, make a mess and eat all my food. I honestly dislike summer because, as much as I adore sweating inside the gym, I'm not as enthused about non-gym, summertime sweating. I don't know about where you live, but it was pretty hot here this summer. I intensely dislike breaking a sweat while walking from my car to the store and back. Or to the mailbox and back. There's nothing worse than entering a hot steamy car that has been baking in the heat of a parking lot. Now that school is back in session and the air feels the slightest bit cooler, I'm ready to kiss summer good bye.

I may not miss the 90 degree days, but I sure will miss summer produce. Sweating is unpleasant, but ripe berries make summer much more tolerable.

Those are old pictures I took with my now deceased pink Canon. After my camera melt down the other day, I've been tinkering with my new camera and trying to find the right settings to make my pictures crisper and prettier.
Before I even started fussing with the ISO speed, I went searching my house for the best sources of natural light.

Good natural light is virtually non existent in my house, but I discovered that the front entry way offers copious amounts of light. I guess it shouldn't come as any surprise because the front of our house bakes in the mid-day sun. Seriously, the door knob is often too hot to handle around noon time. And we won't even begin to discuss the sad shape our sun scorched plants are in.

Anyway, taking pictures of green beans on the floor of my front entry way may be a bit unorthodox, but, well....I've never claimed to be normal.

The pictures are getting better, but I still have plenty of room to improve. I guess this is where being stubborn is a good thing....I will win, Nikon Cool Pix, I. WILL. WIN.

Our guest room also receives a good amount of light, but I didn't want to bring food up there. So, I'll take food pictures on the dirty floor of our entry way, but I won't traipse up the stairs, with green beans in hand, to take advantage of our guest room lighting. Hmmm.

The guest room may be out, but our deck offers a fair amount of sunshine as well.

I will definitely miss summer fruits and vegetables, but I suppose I could just start looking forward to the bounty fall has to offer. Apples, pumpkin, butternut squash.

It's almost time to pull out the cinnamon scented candles and prepare to bake some fall inspired goodies. I'll miss watermelon, fresh green beans and peaches, but I suppose crisp, juicy apples, pumpkin bread and maple roasted butternut squash offer a fair (and tasty) replacement.