It’s a Jeep thing

IMG_6132

So my husband started a new job a few months ago and now he has to drive about 30 miles to work each way. Against my better judgement I’ve given my fuel/environment friendly Subaru to him, and in return, I get to drive around his beloved Jeep.

It’s pretty cool. Really good sound system. IF I wanted to blast the music I could. It’s in my favorite color of all time, and because its never seen a pool or beach pick-up or 7 hour trip to Vermont – it’s shiny and clean. Bonus – according to my daughter, it makes me look BA. You know. Bad ass.

The only slightly annoying part of driving around this car is the hand waving I have to do. Are you familiar with this? Do you know that every time one Jeep passes another Jeep they wave at each other? It’s part of the cult…er…culture. No, not like a mother-sending-a-kid-on-the-bus wave – this is a cooler, smaller gesture. It’s unspoken communication between the two drivers that says,” any minute now I could leave this Target parking lot and head right up a mountain. Or drive through a river” or something.

It’s all very stressful.

First of all I can’t get the timing right. By the time I pass another Jeep and see that person waving it’s too late. Then I feel bad. Shameful. I’m letting them down. All of them.

Then the times I remember and the other person doesn’t wave back I obsess. Why didn’t they wave back? Do they know I’m a fraud? Do they see my Subaru soul?

And there are a LOT of freaking Jeeps in our town. A ton. There’s constant waving, threats of waving, post-waving guilt happening every time I leave the house. It’s exhausting.

I know Volvo people are freaks too. But at least they keep their freak flag to themselves.

On a side note – my husband has admitted to waving at a few Jeeps from the Subaru out of habit. That made me feel better.

Facebook Friend

It’s been a slow trek back from vacation. And it seems like I’m not the only one. I hope you took some time off last week – even if it was just the one day (Independence day for the US and Canada Day in, well, Canada).

I know other folks have been having fun too. I know because I see the posts, the check-in’s, the status updates, the tweets. This is why I love technology.  And this is why I really love Facebook. Pictures of babies, food, trips, renovations – bring it all. You know when you want to post how much you hated that movie you saw tonight and you stop yourself and think,”no one cares what I think about this movie” – I care. Go ahead and post it. I’m dying to read it.

You went to a family reunion last weekend? Great – let’s see the potato salad you brought over. You’re third cousin twice removed had a baby – she’s adorable. Keep posting those holiday outfit shots.

I’m not on it to talk you into any of my personal, religious or political views. I’m on it to be nosy. Nosy about things that I care about. Like what color you painted your dining room. Or to do what I like to call – photo eavesdropping. You know what I’m talking about.

My mother thinks Facebook is the devil. The door left open for psychos to come walking into your life. She might be right. But when I weigh that against my need to know all about your day/hour/second…it just isn’t that scary anymore.

I also love keeping connected to old and new relatives and friends.

When my daughter started high school we finally let her join the “network”. She promptly decided Facebook was not her speed when she found out her mother, her father, and all her aunts and uncles are all over it too.

She’s on to Twitter now. And Instagram. And SnapChat.

Excuse me while I go google those things.

 

91828a93-498b-4b81-8d27-d951332b5c76wallpaper

The Lunch Table

This picture is circa 2000.
I had just gotten a job at a Fortune 500 in NYC. After two years of being at home with my baby, I was back at work as an event planner and loving it. Technically I wasn’t a planner until a year later – in the beginning I was an admin.
An admin to an insane, crazy, brilliant woman who ran our group. The woman who gave me a 45 minute lecture on using colored folders instead of beige folders (the colors distracted her as she walked by my cube). The woman who called me from the Tarmac while boarding a flight to tell me she doesn’t like prop planes and why hadn’t I known that and I better fix it ASAP (I couldn’t because there were only prop planes flying to this part of Colorado. I had offered to book her a car the day before when I warned her about this but she hadn’t been listening, something about researching the perfect toilet – no joke).
But all those moments that would have driven me to quit turned into funny stories we shared. Funny war stories at the lunch table.
We worked really really hard. Almost 24/7. Weekends. Holidays. For no money. It was rough.
But every day, we had lunch together – the whole group. There are a few ladies missing from this pic but this was the core group. We also had a Swiss National and a Brit.
We bitched, we ranted, we raved, but most of all – we laughed.
This restaurant lunch was a rarity. Almost all lunches were either in the cafeteria or at a table on our floor.
No one from other groups ever joined – probably because they weren’t invited. This was anti-networking. This was cocooning.
The majority of the lunch was used to make fun of each other. And there was plenty of material. Marriages, weirdo eating habits, childhood traumas – all ripe for the picking. We left our egos in our cube. Belly laughter ensued.
Then we’d go back to working our asses off.
There were weddings, babies, break-ups, promotions, and more.
The crazy boss lady left. And shockingly, in hindsight, I would miss her. Aside from the batshit crazy episodes, I learned a lot from her. And from all those ladies.
It was and continues to be the best job I ever had.

(not sure why I have glasses on? contact lense malfunction that morning?)

20130508-065845.jpg

you can’t always get what you want

This is a state park near us. We go to walk, to picnic, to lay about – actually that’s what I go for.

DSC_1047

 

My family goes there to bike.

DSC_1054

 

I think I’ve told you before. Haven’t I? It’s no biggie. Everyone has something. Some people can’t eat a peanut. Some can’t have dairy (the horror). Some are diabetic. I too have a debilitating challenge. I can’t ride a bike. Well, technically I may be able to actually ride a bike without killing myself, but I really really don’t want to.

My family tried to have an intervention a couple of years ago. They were horrified for me. My husband lived on his bike throughout his childhood. Both my kids adore their bikes. They gave me a long list of reasons why I’d love it. The freedom! The independence! So I finally caved in and they bought me a fancy bike. Took me out every night to practice. And I tried. I acted excited. I seemed enthused. It was awful.

I don’t like riding a bike. It makes me nervous. It makes me feel out of control. It gives me zero happiness. Freedom and independence are not for me. Sorry.

This causes great sadness in my family. I’m like a traitor among them. An alien. They’ll never be able to ride like a full family.

They’ll get over it.

 

 

 

5 Star Problems but a **** ain’t one

I have a problem.

A Tripadvisor problem.

It happens every year.

At about this time, my mind and body starts craving/dreaming/needing a vacation. Somewhere different. Preferably to a place where trains are called metros and where you can stay in a flat instead of an apartment. Or maybe a tropical turquoise retreat where I can drink from a coconut and lay on beach.

A place where I can be Vacation Mom and Vacation Wife. The one that doesn’t worry and nag and yell and order. The one that lets you buy obscenely pricey gum from the gift shop and stay up until you feel like falling asleep. The one that doesn’t care if anyone has brushed their teeth or combed their hair. She’s awesome. I miss her.

But in order to transform into this groovy, go-with-the-flow chick we need to get the hell out of dodge first.

And in order to do that we need to find a place to go.

And every time we find a place I am compelled to that damn website to check out the reviews.

It never ends well for me.

Everyone has an opinion, and I read every last one.

MaryS from Wichita thinks the rooms at a certain resort in Puerto Rico aren’t clean enough.

George from New Jersey didn’t like any of the restaurants but loved the pool at his hotel in Hawaii.

clevergirl8 from Texas loved Peru but had a horrible time with customs at the airport.

I try to focus on just the positive. You can’t make everyone happy, I say to myself.

But then I toss and turn and doubt. And doubt.

Are people just really really picky?

I realize that I could never have been one of those people backpacking through Europe or Asia or Idaho. I need research. Data. Background. I need to know that others have gone before me and had a good time. Or not.

So we’ll make our plans for vacation and it’ll be very exciting, but deep down I’ll be thinking about MikeP from Albany, who thought Dublin was beautiful except for the hotel concierge who was a bit grumpy the whole time.

I give Tripadvisor.com 3 out of 5 stars. Lots of consumer information which usually results in the firm knowledge that no matter where you are going or what you are doing – it could have been better somewhere else.

You must have a really good camera

Ever notice that people usually say you have a nice camera when they see a photo they like? This cracks me up. Maybe it’s my incredibly talented eye. Or my amazing sense of lighting and mood? Hee hee.

Here are some photos taken with a camera phone, a Nikon, a Kodak disposable, and an old school Polaroid camera. Betcha you can’t figure out which is which is which. And really, who cares.

IMG_3858 IMG_3715 IMG_1055 IMG_2926 IMG_2544 DSC_0914 DSC_0944

Just another Scorpio Sunday

I’m a Gemini mom married to a Cancer dad livin’ in a Scorpio world with my two kiddies.  My oldest, my goldest, turned 14 today. Gulp.  I know she doesn’t want me to post about her, but I have to. It’s a blogging law.

So in 1998, at 5am ish I woke my hubby up. He was sleeping on the couch because we’d had a fight and I needed the entire queen mattress to myself to get over it…..we walked down our railroad apartment on the Upper East Side of Manhattan (passing uncle Larry as he was about to walk Gracie).  We hailed a cab and headed to Lenox Hill Hospital – about 10 blocks South of us. My water broke in the cab but the driver had us there in 5 minutes (we tipped big for the clean up!).

She was born shortly after, the first grandkid for both our families. There have been lots of great moments in between, each worthy of its own post. Like when she was a few months old and I fell asleep feeding her on the couch and dropped her, or when she ate so much cake at her 1st birthday party that she passed out from the sugar high, or when everyone told me she was turning yellow from all the baby food and I told them it was just her skin tone. Good times.

Smart, Beautiful, Funny, and most importantly ours!

Diwali is my jam!

Not really. But my girl and her friends call everything their jam so I thought I’d get in on the action.  Even though every time I try to use the word I think of actual jam. Raspberry to be specific.

Anyway – it’s Diwali. The Indian “festival of lights”. A cross between Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s – without the turkey, booze or guy in the red suit. It’s the most important holiday for Indians. It involves (you guessed it) lights, lots of food, getting together with family and friends and being thankful for the good things in life. Sound familiar?

This ends my knowledge of Diwali. I think I did pretty good. Please refer to the internet or a good Indian for actual information.

Happy Merry Mazel Diwali!!

Short but Sweet

Oh Sandy.

Right now, at this minute, we are supposed to be tucked away in Vermont. But instead we’re home, having cut our trip short. Doesn’t everyone drive 6 1/2 hours each way for a day and a half? I’m not bitter. It was a great little visit full of food and family and fun.

The East Coast of the country is a flutter – the perfect storm, a hybrid Frankenstorm is on its way! Save yourselves!

I’m not making light of it. I hope everyone is safe and sound.

So we headed home and bought a ton of crap and some booze to get us through. Isn’t that really what storm preparedness is all about?

Here’s some quick shots of our weekend.

All good times start with my munchkins -here they are on the farm.  We missed the foliage by about 2 weeks – typical.

So during that short time, we went on a cheese tasting and a maple syrup tasting. We were busy.  I liked the lightest and darkest versions of the syrup. All or nothing for me baby.

Cheese wise I’m not picky – except for anything “smoked” which is the devil.

 

And because I’m making a conscious effort to “stay in the picture” (read Allison Tate’s post on The Huffington Post called,”The Mom Stays in the Picture”).  Here’s me with my husband’s gorgeous cousin. She’s the hot blond on the right. That’s her hubby getting personal with a horse on the farm.

  

We went to Quechee Gorge which was really cool and funky. It also reminded me of what a chicken shit I am about heights, large falls, falling to my death, etc.

Here’s my girl and my sister-in-law – this is one of 40 photos I took titled “Gorge Glam”.  What?

As I posted this I noticed that my girl is a wee bit taller than her god mother! Then I cried about how fast time goes by and about how my sister-in-law was just holding her swaddled up in a rocking chair. Yesterday. Anyway. I digress.

Girl, Uninterrupted

Yesterday was “International Day of the Girl”. Did you know that? I didn’t. I thought it was “International Day of the Conference Call”.

CNN.com asked some of the most impressive women in the world what they’d tell their 15-year-old self. I won’t tell you how many times I tried to link that article to this post and failed. Just know that I tried.  WordPress is getting under my nerves. I digress.

Here’s what I would tell my 15-year-old self if I could:

  • Even though they are driving you crazy right now – your family will be the most important thing in your life.
  • Although you’ve been plotting to get the hell out of Pennsylvania – in about 20 years you’ll be back – and love it.
  • Be kind to everyone. You have no idea what they are going through.
  • In 4 years you’ll meet the man you’ll spend the rest of your life with. Sorry. It won’t be David Canfield. You’ll do much better.
  • Go get your eyebrows waxed. Today. Now.
  • All the reasons you think you’re goofy, dorky and weird will be all the reasons why people love you. Lighten up.

Not as eloquent as Melinda Gates or Oprah – but there you have it.

I couldn’t find a picture of myself at 15 – but here’s one that’s close enough. Yes, that’s a maroon velvet vest I’m wearing. There may or may not have been a matching skort on the bottom.

Previous Older Entries

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 400 other followers