Friday, September 30, 2011

Friday Fun- Just a Little Something I Would Like To Get Off My Chest...

As I mentioned on Monday, I'm running a marathon in October. I've been training since June. That's a lot of running if you're figuring 4 runs a week. I run early in the morning so that I can run on the road (the shoulder or the bike lane). As I've explained before, the asphalt is much easier on your knees and hips than cement. I do take the sidewalk if the traffic gets heavy. I'm not dangerous about it. And most everyone I see in the morning is absolutely wonderful.  Most people will go out of their way to give me room, or cheer me as they pass or give a friendly wave. It's really nice! But some people believe it is their job  DUTY to tell me where I may and may not run. Since they have the pleasure of getting to yell at me and lecture me and make numerous amounts of gestures at me without ever waiting around for my reply, I'm taking liberty to tell them now (because, you know, I'm SURE they subscribe to my blog and all).  

 Dear Mom with Your Middle School Boy Scout- please teach your Scout not to yell out the window at me. It's very unScoutlike. And contrary to what you both thought, just because I have ear buds in, doesn't mean my iPod is actually ON or that I have it up too loud. Yes, I heard him when he called me stupid runner. Maybe he needs to review that whole "polite and character" thing in the Scout Promise. Yeah, my boy's in scouting too....

 Dear Cigarette Smoker- It's just not nice to toss your butts out the window. Especially if you happen to be passing me or I you. You may not like that I'm running in the road, but at 6 AM, and the fact that there's 5 lanes and no traffic, I'm sure you could find another place to throw your butts than at me. Thanks!

 Dear Cranky Critiquer- You shouldn't be out driving before having coffee. Coffee makes you nicer. Promise. 

And my absolute favorite:

Dear Musclebound Guy Driving the Ridiculously Unnecessary for West County Red Hummer- My mother taught me to play nice and share. I know that can be hard, having such a huge, pristine, not one speck of dirt on it SUV, but let's make a deal. You don't try to intimidate me with your size and yelling at me about where I need to be running, and I won't tell you to get a Smart Car. 

Yours, gearing up for my Saturday Run,


Wednesday, September 28, 2011


Although I know that my sister, Margee, will be a little upset with me for posting her little mishap on my blog, I just can’t resist! After all, what are sisters for, anyway?

Margee loves to volunteer. So her job this week at her daughter’s middle school, Parkway South, was to send out email reminders to parents about their upcoming parent/teacher conferences. Simple enough, right? Except that the acronym that Parkway South Middle School uses is PSM, not PMS!

surprised cat


And she STILL didn’t get it, even when a mother emailed her back and asked her if this reminder was in regards to a follow up appointment! (I guess she thought the email was from her OB/GYN!)

It took one of her friends, who happened to be on her email list, to point it out to her!

Yep, gotta be careful with acronyms!

Aren’t sisters fun?


Monday, September 26, 2011

Monday Madness- I've Been Holding It In

In a moment of challenge by species of the Y Chromosome Factor, I decided that yes, I could, especially as a woman, run a marathon. Oh- you know the moment. It's when a couple of the Y Species are talking amongst themselves and you happen to join the conversation because, well, you're standing there, and being married to one of the Y Species, you add to the conversation and get The Look. The Sigh follows along with a Roll Of The Eyes to the other Y Species involved in the conversation and then comes The Patronizing Reply. 

You know- the reply that is lined with the "That's really sweet that you want to play along but you really don't know what you're talking about and there's no way you could ever begin to complete that challenge."

Consider the gauntlet thrown.

Heck, forget the gauntlet. I'm talking hockey mitts and pulling jerseys over the head. If there's one thing that gets under my skin it's when a Y Species implies I can't because my extra body parts are located somewhere other than my nether region~ as if THAT should make me less than anything. 

So come October 23rd, barring any unforeseen injury, I will be completing the inaugural St. Louis Rock-n-Roll Marathon. It's making the Y Species to which I married take a whole new look at me (which I admit, is kinda nice). 

And I don't have to win it, I just have to finish.

I'm a month out and my next long run is 21-22 miles. I'm praying it all comes together. Because I just couldn't take it if the Y Species could smirk at me forever. 

Yours, loving the 5:30 AM wake up run,


Friday, September 23, 2011

Friday Funny- Hey Lady! Did You Know...?

As an alum, The Hubs is a huge Mizzou Fan. In the words of Z2,"You have to know, he takes being a Mizzou Fan very seriously." So seriously, in fact, that my car has a Tiger Tail. I've resigned myself to it. I've thought about tying some purple ribbon on it (Go Wildcats!), but I know it would not be worth the heck I'd get for it. And actually, during football season, having the tail hang out of my trunk makes it supremely easy to find my car in the parking lot, which admittedly is NOT one of my strengths. 
Usually, we get some honks, or a toddler will pass by the car in amazement, believing there really IS a tiger in the trunk. The wonderment on their faces is priceless. Being close to St. Louis, where there are a plethora of Mizzou grads (we're only 1 1/2 hours away from Mizzou), people are accustomed to seeing things like this. But this September, it seems to have caused quite a stir. 

I've been flagged down on the highway.

Stopped in parking lots.

Had numerous people try to get my attention with different gestures. (I'm choosing to believe those gestures were signs of support).

Most recently, I had a man stop me in the parking lot as I'm trying to get home early one morning from an emergency milk run. 

"Excuse me, ma'am," he said in his thick, East Indies accent,"Do you know you have a tail hanging out of your trunk?"

"Mmhmm," I reply. "It's supposed to be there."

"Supposed to be there? You mean, you WANT it hanging out of the trunk?"

"Yes, I do. My husband is a Tigers fan," I explain.

"A Tiger fan? Why would you want a tail hanging out of the trunk?" he asked.

"Uhm, you know... Mizzou... Go Tigers!... Mizzou-rah?"

He looked at me like I was nuts. I decided to go with it. Wanting to get out of the conversation and get home without being thought of as rude, I looked him dead in the eye and said," Honestly, it's the only way I can control the tiger. If I open the trunk, he'll jump out and then, well, where will we be?"

He backed away, I got in my car and made it home in time to feed my kids breakfast before school. 

Yours, rooting for the Tigers (unless they're playing K-State),


Wednesday, September 21, 2011


When Customer Service Representatives in technical positions over the phone get their training, the first lesson they should learn is to treat the caller like an idiot. Respectfully. No, really! Hear me out. They should (respectfully) ask if the computer/TV/phone/whatever is plugged in/turned on/ evo

Okay, my problem with my cell phone wasn’t quite so simple, but still, I went through FIVE (count them…FIVE) techs over a course of THREE days before one of them asked a very simple question that solved my problem in an instant: Is your software set up?

All I was trying to do was download software so I could sync my Outlook contacts and calendar with my phone. I downloaded it fine, my phone found it fine, but it wouldn’t sync. Every tech I talked to had a different suggestion. All the way to RESETTING MY PHONE TO FACTORY DEFAULTS. Have you ever done that? Do you know what a pain that is to reset everything to how you want it??????? HUGE pain!

THEN, the 4th tech I talked to said they were coming out with a new release of the software the very next day to fix all these problems that people were having. REALLY? Couldn’t the other people I talked to have told me that BEFORE I RESET MY PHONE?

call centerBut alas, even that didn’t fix it. So when I called back, the nice man I talked to asked what I was looking at on my computer screen. When I told him, he gently told me I hadn’t set the program up yet, which would explain why it wasn’t syncing yet.

PEOPLE…DO NOT ASSUME I KNOW AS MUCH AS YOU!!! Do not assume I even know enough to set up my software. Not one of you told me I had to do that, even after walking me through installation. TREAT ME LIKE THE IDIOT THAT I AM!!! (Just be gentle and respectful about it please!)

Yes, it works great now! Yes, if I could have reached through the telephone and given that 5th tech a big sloppy kiss, I would have! And yes, if I could fly to where ever that call center is and kick the butts of the other 4 reps, I would!


Monday, September 19, 2011

Monday Madness- I Have No Words For This...

I have a very dear friend named Jenny. She's one of my best friends from high school. We met on the first day of freshman year and have been friends ever since. Jenny is one of those naturally good people- not perfect, but pretty close. She's not had the easiest life, but has always kept hope through everything. This latest round, though, leaves us all speechless. Frankly, I'm devastated for her and her husband, Mike. Here's the concise version of their story, as her sister has written it:

Mike and Jenny wanted a child more than anything. Jenny had cancer two times in her twenties, and although she’s been cancer-free for many years, she was left unable to conceive.
     Mike and Jenny decided it was time to adopt.  They found an adoption agency, and started the process.  They were hand-chosen by a birth mother, and they decided to continue the process.  Mike and Jenny passed all the requirements to adopt, and baby Jonah was born in April in another state—as healthy and perfect as can be.  Mike and Jenny were there for the whole thing and they were able to complete the adoption process and come home to Missouri.
     The Agency had to contact the birth father and give him the right to contest the adoption.  He took his right, and proved paternity with a test. 
The birth father is in prison, in another state and was able to be given free legal support.         
     He Skyped his way into his trial from his orange jumpsuit in prison.  The birth father is in prison for kidnapping, and beating the birth mother while pregnant, and other things, including drugs and non-support of other children.  The jurors were not informed he was in prison, or that it was an adoption situation.   With the small amount of facts they had, they decided that the birth father was “FIT”. 
     Mike and Jenny may lose the baby to a dangerous man.  Baby Jonah has never had any other parents except Mike and Jenny.  Mike and Jenny have put every penny they have into the adoption, including selling a car, and other items.  They are past their budget for this.  Now, they need to hire attorneys to fight to keep baby Jonah in their safe, loving care and away from a violent, drug-using convict. Not only do they have to foot the bill for their own legal fees, but they are told they could possibly have to cover the birth father’s legal expenses as well. 

UNBELIEVABLE, isn't it? What's up in the state of Louisiana? I mean, if I was on a jury, and I saw a man being skyped in to the courtroom wearing an orange jumpsuit, wouldn't I have some questions about WHY he looked like he was in prison uniform? Especially if it was MY TAXES paying for this man's trial? Every time I read the above paragraph, I almost vomit. Literally. Baby Jonah is beautiful and happy and thriving and to think that he might have to go back to a less than ideal environment is incomprehensible. 

Her sister has set up a Paypal Donations Account called "Save Baby Andrews" at    NO pressure, but if you feel moved to do something and are able, I know they would really appreciate it. I know what I'll be getting them for Christmas this year...

Yours, praying for Baby Jonah,


Friday, September 16, 2011

Friday Funny- In Which I Wear It Like a Three Star General

I had been telling her I was going to do it, threatening my vengeance for nearly six months now. I'm all about second chances and third chances and such. But I could bear it no longer. So I finally made good on my threat and followed through.

You see, my Z1 is a bit of a, well, she's free with her belongings. That means wherever she happens to be is where her stuff will land. And if she's finished with it, it does not follow her into the next room. It RARELY makes it up to her bedroom to be out away. Not without some "strong encouragement" (yelling) anyway.

So I hit my limit this past week and walked into her room with a bag. I filled the bag and had to go back to the kitchen for another one. Anything that was on the floor or in a cluttery pile went into the bag. Purple feather boa? Check. Chloe, her American Girl doll? Yep. Half her socks? Mmhmm. A myriad of stickers, pens and assorted paper goods? Those almost made the real trash, but I managed to restrain myself.

She came home from school and I said not a word. We walked upstairs, both of us to our own rooms. As she was walking she looked at me and said,"I know, I know... I REALLY need to clean my room." She got to her room and let out a squeal of surprise and exclaimed,"Wow, Mom! You cleaned my room for me!"

"Yes I did, Baby, " I replied, not letting on to anything.

It wasn't until about 3 hours later I heard a,"Hey Mom, have you seen my such and such?"

"Yep. I have it."

"Great. Where is it? I'll go get it."

"Uhm, no. It's mine now. You'll need to earn it back," I said calmly.

"WHAAATTT?????!!!" She freaked. Her little legs went into a flurry as she ran up to her room and began a staunch inventory process. Oh the wailing and cries of despair! I remained unmoved.

After explaining how she would earn all of her items back, she was still dumbfounded. "Even my clothes?" she asked. "What will I do if you take all of my clothes?"

"I guess you'll be going to school naked. And winter's coming, so I suggest we break this habit during September and not December,"I stated dryly.

"That's... that's just... oooooooo that's mean!!!" she wailed.

"That's right, dear. Mean I am. Mean I will be. But I will not be your maid." I am now officially a "Mean Mom".

Guess where I'm heading with a bag this afternoon.... Giggling all the way. :)

Yours, wishing you a cleaning free weekend,


Wednesday, September 14, 2011


Last night, it stormed all night. So naturally, if you’ve read prior posts about Bizmark, my 100 pound furry “baby,” you’d expect, as I did, that he’d be crawling over my head to get into bed with me. But much to my surprise, there was no fur in my face last night!

So I can attribute this change of behavior to one of four things.

  1. Maybe he’s maturing. But usually with dogs, they get more neurotic as they get older, so I’m not so sure about this one.
  2. He’s losing his hearing. Hmmm. He sure hears food dropping on the floor pretty well.
  3. He’s decided I’m a bad mommy since I wasn’t giving him any sympathy and I was pushing him off of me as hard as I could. Me? A bad mommy? I think not. Scratch that one off the list!
  4. He heard Bad Daddy calling him a “Sissy Dog” and “Girlie Dog” and decided to prove him wrong. Yeah! That’s it! Blame it on Bad Daddy!

Okay, mystery solved! As long as it’s working and IT’S NOT MY FAULT, I’m good with it!



Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Reflections on the Ten Year Anniversary of 9/11

It was quite a weekend. Solemn, reflective... remembering and feeling the intense wounds all over again of everything that was taken from us as a nation that day.

There is nothing that could be said or done that would make it all okay in the end. Even when President Obama announced they had killed bin Laden, it didn't bring me any sense of justice or vindication. Not that I want him to be around to bring more terror, by any means, but the whole things feels utterly senseless. I try to understand it, and I just can't.

But here is something I do know... things I did see this past Sunday. I saw people coming together and honoring the memory of the fallen. I saw people make time to display their patriotism, flying the flag, proud to be Americans. I saw people stopping for each other, random acts of kindness, expressing thanks to civil servants and first responders. I watched many recounts of that day on television, and in the midst of something absolutely horrific and incomprehensible, people stopped to save each other, help each other, protect each other. The news reports of the children of 9/11 were the hardest. Watching these children speak about the parents they will never know, simply because of someone's hatred. But I also saw the impact that people had on other people's lives. That is a priceless gift. I would not say it was an equal trade by any means. But I'm grateful to find something beautiful in the midst of something so devestating.
Never forget.
Always remember.

Remember who you are, and from what nation you come. Remember what our freedom has already cost us... and continues to cost us today. Remember the people who protect and serve on a daily basis. Remember that we are all in this together, and one day, it may be the kindness of an absolute stranger that saves you. Remember how as a nation we came together to heal. Work toward coming together again.

Never forget.
Always remember.


Thursday, September 8, 2011

Friday Fun!

Friday Funny...

This one is still making me giggle. I mean, the beaver at the very end... that would totally be my world!

Have a wonderful weekend!



I just read in Reader’s Digest (original article by Pamela Paul from The New York Times) that nobody talks on the telephone anymore. And they aren’t talking about just landlines. They are saying that nobody uses the phone to just “chit-chat” anymore, they are only using their phones to text or use email now. Talking on the phone is a nuisance to most people and is avoided at all costs.

In fact, the line is, “Phone calls telephoneare rude. Intrusive. Awkward.”

Really? Wow. I respectfully disagree.

Unless that call is from a telemarketer.

But if that call is from a friend or family member or neighbor or credit card company telling me my card has been used suspiciously, I welcome that call.

Maybe I’m just a “chit-chatty” gal, but I like to TALK to my friends and family, not have only a written relationship with them. How can you console a sad friend with a text? Or relay a funny story in an email? How can you catch up after a couple of weeks without actually talking? You need to HEAR their voice to know if everything really is “fine” when they say it is.

So, if you’re my friend, I’m going to keep calling you until you tell me to stop (at which time I’m guessing we won’t be friends too much longer!). I’ll call your home, I’ll call your cell, and if I can’t find you, I’ll text you and tell you to call me so we can TALK! Texting is fine for certain things, but not to sustain a friendship.

If Reader’s Digest, the New York Times or Pamela Paul would like to discuss this further, they are welcome to CALL me!


Oh, and yes, I just realized that today is Thursday, not Wednesday! I’m sure Melissa will get a kick out of the fact that I’m a day late in blogging this week. Let’s just let her have her fun, shall we? Do you think she’ll call me or text me? Smile

Monday, September 5, 2011

No Madness Today! (OR: A Girl's Gotta Have Goals, Right?)

May your cares be light, your worries be few and your blessings be many.

Say thank you to a civil servant today, especially the ones who are working.

Don't go to the store unless it's a true emergency (and no, running out of liquor does NOT count!). Help retailers remember why they are suppose to be closed today.

Eat some BBQ. Smile. Relax. Breathe.

Happy Labor Day!

Yours, gearing up for absolutely nothing today!


Friday, September 2, 2011

Friday Funny...Welcome To My Oxymoron

What happens when you take a 50 pound fur ball, a squeaky toy that she simply adores, and add in three days time?

This sentence: "Mooooooommm! Lola's pooping the pink piggy!"

Go ahead. Say it five times fast. It's just funny. Lola is still chewing, chewing, chewing. She chomped that pink pig until she completely annihilated it. I thought I had picked up all the pieces. Apparently, I did not. Dare I say it, though, I believe she may be potty trained completely! YAY for Lola!

So on to my oxymoron... or paradox. I'm not sure what to name it... maybe it's simply ironic. But it made me laugh. You all know one of my jobs is working for a church. And theologically, this church is pretty conservative. And that's okay. I'm a believer, and there are things upon which the church and I will agree and disagree. We agree to disagree. That being said, one of my jobs for them as the head of their arts school is to develop new classes. I've been working on a photography course about which I am very excited. i was putting all of the finishing touches on the information, building fliers and sending out registrations. Someone asked me if the teacher had a site where they could view their work. So I googled the teacher's name + photography.

Among one of the very first hits, came a site with a photographer of the same name.

Guess what HIS specialization is?

Seriously... it couldn't get any better for my conservatively minded church. Especially as some of it's members are particularly vocal about how modern we are becoming.

Yep, you guessed it.

The other guy's (NOT the photographer with which we are contracting to teach the class) specialization?

Boudoir Photography.

Yours, anticipating some fun phone calls come Monday!