Pee and Poop are my purview

Hope you’re having a beautiful, sunny Saturday morning.
I’ve been traumatized and it’s just 8am.
I feel like calling it a day. It’s over.
Here’s what went down.
You should know two things before I start. These things may not be a surprise to you.
First – I am not what you’d call a pet person. I didn’t grow up with dogs or cats. I don’t long to touch a cute dog walking down the street or cuddle with a cute kitty. Take all that with peace and love.
Second – we have a cat. Technically my husband and kids have a cat, but it’s hard to ignore because we all live together.
It’s taken me a long time to get comfortable living with a cat, but I’ve done well. In fact, I’ve done very well. I feed the cat. I make sure it’s not thirsty. I’ve even come to terms with the litter box.
But I have limits people.
Back to my morning.
So I’m up early, excited to tackle the day and do some chores. I don’t mind chores. I especially don’t mind them when it’s this beautiful out.
I gather up all the laundry – there’s two piles. Dry cleaning and regular. The regular stuff is in a basket. The dry cleaning is in a heap next to it. I go about my merry, delusional way and take them downstairs. I notice an…odor. That’s not surprising because it’s dirty laundry inclusive of a 10 year old boy’s soccer clothes and more importantly, I always notice an odor. Constantly. Good, bad, ugly – I have super olfactory powers. I shake it off. Soon everything will smell of lavender and bleach. All will be right in the world.
I start a load and scoop up the dry cleaning and head to the car.
More odor.
Different odor.
3 more things to note. 1) We’ve had some busy weekends and I haven’t been able to drop off the dry cleaning in a bit. Like a month. So it’s a lot of stuff. 2) Coming back from one such weekend we noticed that we’d inadvertently left the laundry room door closed. 3) We keep the cat’s litter box in the laundry room.
Back to present.
I drive to my favorite dry cleaners. Stop for coffee. Sing a tune out loud.
I grab the clothes out of the car and head in. As always it’s busy on a Saturday. I wait my turn – still clutching the clothes. I make a mental note to buy some sort of foot spray for my son’s shoes. It must be his stinky socks infecting all the laundry.
Then I get to the counter, dump the clothes and they start separating as we make small talk. Yes, it’s finally sunny we say, no more rain. This winter was hard, we say smiling and nodding.
And then it happens. She lifts a shirt and there it is. A pair of pants with a pile of cat poop and a shirt stained a special shade of yellow. I think I screamed. Or maybe they screamed. I don’t remember, I blacked out.
They quickly folded up the clothes and politely told me to go wash with vinegar and soap before bringing them back.
I drove home in a trance.
As a mother, most of my life has been about pee or poop. That’s what they don’t tell you before kids. It’s just all pee and poop.
But I’m finally at the stage in life where my kids are, for the most part, keeping all that to themselves. But I realized this morning that I can’t get away. I’ll never get away. My world is one big bathroom joke.
How could this have happened? I mean, I know how it happened. We locked the cat out of the liter box, which lives in our laundry room. So the cat went and did her business in our laundry. Oh the irony. Oh the horror. Is she an evil genius bent on revenge? Was it a cosmic karma joke on us? On me? I dunno.
I’m going back to bed.

#yawn

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This is how I wish I felt today.

New Orleans Day 4

Are we there yet?
That moment when you realize you’ve been working 14 hour days for 4 days and it’s just the first day of the conference.
Today was great. One of the most fun things about this job is seeing people’s reaction to the experience you’ve put together.
Tonight was Mardi Gras night!
And I thought I’d show you where event professionals usually eat. In a service hallway, by the fire exit. Sexy.

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New Orleans – Day 3

It was a soft start to the conference. Our VIPs, some senior execs and about 110 of the 900 expected guests checked in.
Here’s what went down today:
- the ballroom/staging was set. Before and after below.
- our security operatives arrived (don’t ask).
- I yelled at approximately 3 people before 8am. Pretty good for a Sunday.
- we had birthday cake for one of the planners and I decided to pass on a piece and have some fruit. Or! I had a delicious hearty piece. Which one of these scenarios is more likely you think?
- we took our guests to a beautiful historic building called The Chicory for some live jazz and dinner. It was a perfect evening – complete with the largest piece of meat I’ve ever seen being served. A 65 pound roast called a Steamboat something or other. I spoke to the chef – he said it took 7 hours at 350 degrees. Have you ever? I know this sounds awkward but I’m obsessed with this piece of meat. Pictures below. Ofcourse.
- official kick-off tomorrow! Say a prayer to all the gods that you know and love for me.
- peace out

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This Mother

I hope all you moms out there had a great day. I did the following:

Cards and cuddles in bed.
Ate a Sunday breakfast that I didn’t make or go get.
Spent 3 hours making photo prints from the last 10 months.
Spent another 2 hours trying to find a proper photo album (it can’t have “memo” space and I prefer a large, square one that holds both vertical and horizontal pics). No luck. But I had fun trying.
Then came the real fun.
Hair up, pjs on.
A nose strip.
A clay mask.
A steaming hot wash.
A 15 minute derma scrub
A cold compress.
Good times.
Some people like to get tulips and cards. I like to get time to exfoliate.
(And I like tulips and cards)

Happy Mother’s Day!

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Ladysitter

I was chatting with one of the smart young women I work with yesterday. She’s getting married in less than a week and seemed so calm and relaxed. She told me her secret. She has what she calls her ladysitter.
Never heard of such a thing? Same. Apparently a ladysitter comes in, organizes her house while she works, puts up the art she’s been meaning to hang for weeks – that kinda stuff. She’s no housekeeper, no no no. She does the things that make this gal feel put together. Thank you note envelopes written out. Registry gifts sorted and tagged. Duplicates returned to the store they came from. Reminders to refresh the pantry and buy household needs. The men reading this won’t understand because you already have a mansitter. That would be your wife. Or your mother. Or your girlfriend.
If you’re gay – one of you understands this. The other thinks birthday cards get magically sent to your loved ones.
Sigh.
A ladysitter.
I want one.

Sounded good at the time

We had a very Mad Men afternoon yesterday. My sister and her dude joined us for a tour and tasting of a local PA Rye distillery. Aren’t we so folksy and interesting? Dad’s Hat is a local, hand crafted whiskey…err…rye. Rye Whiskey? Something like that. What I know for sure is that it isn’t a bourbon. Or is it a bourbon and not a Whiskey?

At the end of the tour we sampled 3 of their whiskeys. A white, a light brown and a deep dark brown. We heard about the hints of vanilla and pepper we’d feel on the sides of our tongue. We heard about the vermouth barrels that imparted just the right flavor to their product – smell that dry sweetness they said. We all nodded and agreed. Admittedly, it was a bit rough going down. But I got caught up in the moment. They told us the best way to enjoy the whiskey was with one perfect ice cube and maybe a twist of orange rind. I had visions of having this classic cocktail. I felt chic already.

We bought a bottle of the dark vermouth version – stopped at Wawa to get an orange and a bag of ice and headed home. We made ourselves a drink and sat in the sun. I took a sip and smelled the orange and the vermouth and the lovely notes of vanilla and quickly decided – I like wine.

But it was a really fun day. Here’s some shots I took. The man in the hat is Herman, the founder of the place. He wears a hat like his dad. Get it?

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Little Miracle

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Maybe it’s because I’ve been away for work for a bit and I’m overly emotional.

Maybe it’s because I worry about literally every situation my kids could possibly get into to. Past, present and future.

I worry they’ll grow up wrong.

I worry they’ll remember their childhoods painfully. Or without joy. Or not at all.

I worry they’ll never want to see us when they are no longer mandated by law to live with us.

I worry.

So when I came home to find this homework assignment that my daughter did it almost killed me with joy.

The assignment was to write about an ” Ordinary Miracle” in your life, and my daughter decided to write about her brother.

Waaaaa!! I can’t even think about it because it just makes me melt.

I am not allowed by the laws of teenagehood to show you the actual assignment, but let me tell you, it’s amazing.

I am really close to my sister, and my husband is super close to his sisters too – so the fact that she wrote about her brother as her ordinary miracle will bring a smile to my face for a long time. Forever maybe.

It was an extraordinary miracle to me.

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Roots-Trees-Forest

That’s a mantra I heard from a speaker at our last conference. The talk was about leadership. So simple and clear. A good leader has to see the roots, the trees and the forest. Got it. I couldn’t stop thinking about it. Something about the idea bothered me.
It’s a perfect concept for leadership. Don’t be stuck in the weeds. Don’t get bogged down by the minutiae.
Except that for events it’s all wrong. An event is all about the roots. The dirt. The seed. You start at the top and then you deconstruct.
You focus on every little detail.
Minutiae is my life.
You know that expression “stuck in the weeds”? I’m living in the weeds. So for all you future event planners out there – here’s the truth – Events is weeds, roots and dirt. You’ll be in it. All the time. Knee deep.
I should be a motivational speaker.
I get very reflective on 5 hour flights to the West Coast.
Here’s what I saw outside my window while writing this. Forget the roots – I’m up in the clouds. Oh the irony.

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Ode to Putzing

For as long as I’ve known my father-in-law – a couple of decades – he’s used the phrase “I’m just putzing around” when asked what he’s been up to on a particular day. It’s classic Pappa Joe. 

I love putzing around. Humming about. Doing nothing of any importance or consequence. I’ve always loved it – I just never knew what it was called. So much of my time during the week is spent going from one efficient time block to another – it’s nice to wake up and putz around. It doesn’t mean you do nothing. No no no. It means you do stuff you want that leads to other stuff. Maybe you start a project, but you certainly don’t need to finish it. Maybe you go to a store where you need nothing and kill an hour. Or two. It’s like surfing the net – but outside in the real world. It’s passing the bagel place up the road to go to the better bagel place inconveniently located on the other side of town. It’s not about errands. It’s not about chores. It’s about a few hours of unproductive activity. 

Can you guess what I did this morning? 

 

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