Wednesday, February 29, 2012


I am done, done, done!!! The boys crossed over into Boy Scouts last night so my time as a Cub Scout Den Leader and the Pack Treasurer is OVER!!!

Can I hear a WOO HOO from the crowd?

Not that I haven’t enjoyed it, well most of it, but let me tell you, it was a LOT of work. A lot of handholding (and not just the kids, sometimes the parents, too), a lot of encouraging, a lot of planning, and sometimes a lot of yelling!

Would I do it again? You betcha!

Congratulations to my AWESOME den!!!



Monday, February 27, 2012

Monday Madness- The Need For Dignity

Oh, lovely Monday. You have not failed to visit me once again. And for that I am grateful. It means I'm up and going and have one more opportunity. One more opportunity to get it right, to love someone well, to enjoy the my children and husband. And if I'm lucky, maybe something more like getting to write a great song or an unexpected visit from a friend. There's usually a moment in each day that catches you by surprise. Today it came while driving home from school.

A friend of mine sent me a CD and I put it in the stereo. It was his latest project called "Dignity". A different sort of name for a CD, except that it came from Music For the Soul, a non-profit that specializes in making projects that address heavy life issues. I'm sure you've heard me talk about it before. to be honest, I had put off listening to it, because, well, I know my parents will sometime in the near future be heading down the road this CD addresses and I'm just not ready to go there quite yet. "Dignity" deals with caregiving for loved ones who have special needs, be it aging or disease or a disability. While our book, The Caregiver Organizer For MY Aging Parent addresses the the day to day practical things, this Cd addresses the emotional side of caring for someone.  And wow- what a range. Through spoken word and song, this project shows everyone's side, from the caregiver to the one for whom the care is provided. It's such a delicate situation- most times the caregiver is caring for someone with whom the relationship used to be reversed. The songs speak directly to what it feels like to age, the unknown of losing someone or losing your own abilities/faculties, and the greatest fear- losing dignity.  I loved the way it addresses each aspect of this life season with grace and compassion on all ends of the spectrum. It brought me to a greater understanding of what I will be walking into, and how I can hopefully handle it with compassion, grace and most of all, dignity.

You can find this new project by clicking here. May we all be so fortunate as to retain our dignity as we ensure it for the ones we love.

Yours, reflecting on the path to come,


Friday, February 24, 2012

Friday Funny- If I Can't See It, It Must Be Okay...

It's that time of the week- Friday Funny!

But first, a shout out to the Berg Twins- Adam and Eric. Happy 11th Birthday! 

About a week ago, I found a beautiful lock of hair in the master bath. About three inches long, it had a wonderful chestnut color and a bit of curl tapering to the end. I couldn't imagine from where it had come, as it was not my color nor The Hub's. It didn't look like either of the children's. And after Z2's hair cutting debacle a few springs ago, she knew far better than to cut her hair. Except of course, when she renewed her lesson three months ago. Nonetheless, as it did not match anyone's hair color (or so I thought), I was a bit perplexed. Just what was going on in my master bath? Hmmm.....

Last night, while getting ready for bed, I found yet another lock of hair. This one was quite thicker. I picked it up and feeling it in my hands, I knew. This was no secret girlfriend in my bathroom, but my own  son's hair! "Good night!" I thought. "He's cutting his hair. What on earth?!?!" He had already fallen asleep, so the questioning would have to wait. 

This morning he toddled (yes, at age 11, the first sleepy walks in the morning are still toddling) into the kitchen and sleepily snuggled into my arms.I buried my face in the crown of his head. Inhaling deeply, I rubbed my nose slightly in his hair. And that's when I felt it... the unevenness in the thickness of that thatch of hair.

"Son," I started,"Have you been cutting your hair?"

"Yep," he said, matter of factly.

"Uhm... Why?" I asked.

"It's the sticky-uppy pieces back there. I can't get them to lay down, so I'm just cutting them off. If I can't see them, I don't have to comb them."

True, but how shall we explain a bald spot at age 11?

Yours, hiding all the scissors,


Wednesday, February 22, 2012


Say what you will about American Airlines, but they pulled through for me this time. Here’s my story:

I was going through my emails the other day when I saw one from American Airlines saying that I can go ahead and check in for my flight. Hmmm, that’s strange, I think to myself, since we’re not flying for another month for spring break. So I look more closely at the itinerary and apparently I booked the flight for FEBRUARY 19th instead of MARCH 19th. CRAP! Yes, we would have been in Miami for 5 weeks instead of 1!

So I immediately got on the phone with AA and explained my situation to the rep, who told me no big deal, she can change my flights, but of course there’s a $150 change fee for each ticket. WHAT??? That’s $600 for my little family!!!

Listen (or read in this case) how the rest of our conversation went:

CSR: I’m sorry, that’s our policy.

Me (almost sobbing): Isn’t there anything you can do for me? That’s $600.

CSR: I understand Ma’am, I’m sorry.

Me: Is there somebody else there I can speak to about this?

CSR: So you’d like to speak to my…

Me (slow on the hints): What? I’m just looking for somebody who might be able to work with me on this.

CSR (CLEARLY trying to prompt me): So you’re asking to speak to my…

Me: Um, your boss?

CSR (thinking I’m a complete idiot by now): YES ma’am. Let me get a supervisor for you.

Me (wondering why in the world we had to play that little game): Great, thanks!

So her supervisor comes on the phone and I pleaded and begged and whined and she actually waved the entire amount for me. I was shocked!!!

So while I still think American Airlines nickel and dimes us on baggage fees, meals and anything else they can think of, I am grateful that they did this one thing for me, and I just may fly them again. You know, as a second choice to Southwest!


Monday, February 20, 2012

Monday Madness- Stopping the Clock

It's happening again. I've tried to stop it so many different times. I've begged, pleaded, tried to bargain and  bribe. But Father time refuses to be bought and my baby is aging as I type. I close my eyes and he is still 2, sitting in the grocery cart, giggling at me while I try to smother his neck with kisses. He still has the same broad smile, and the giggle has rounded out to a full belly laugh. 
How did I spend 11 years? Eleven?!!?! Lots of laughs, giggles, plenty of tears, lots of games, trips to the park, zoo, beach, moments of being at odds with each other, but always coming back together and hearing him tell me, just like he did today as he got out of the car to go to a friend's house,"Don't worry Mom. I'll love you forever. Promise."

I sure hope so.

Yours, trying to keep it together,


Sunday, February 19, 2012

Sunday Silly

We were sitting at the dinner table. Miraculously, everyone liked what I had prepared and we were happily eating our barbequed chicken. As is our dinner time ritual, we began going around the table talking about the high and low of our day. When The Hubs got to Z2, he commented on her outfit. She was looking particularly cute that evening, in all of her 8 year old girlishness. As of late, her dressing choices have been a bit of a point of contention.  We've hit that point in dressing where the child wears the same three shirts every single week and will ask you to wash them over and over (to which I refuse to comply, as she has more than enough clothing for two-three weeks). Of course, as she habitually wears the same clothing, it becomes worn and shapeless, much to The Hubs chagrin. For me, as long as its clean and she's covered and the colors are within the same vein, it's a battle I'd rather not pursue. I mean, why bring it on any earlier? She'll figure it out soon enough.

"Oh, mom," she said,"Could you please wash my XYZ shirt for my skit tomorrow?" Before I could reply, The Hubs cut in. "No. No she will not. I'm over that shirt, Z2. It was cute when you you were in 1st grade, but not so much in 3rd grade."

She looked at me and rolled her eyes. With complete calm and matter-of-factness, she turned to The Hubs and said," I can't even pretend to think that you would understand the complications of a third grade girl's closet."

I supressed my laughter (well, I tried, anyway). A bit taken aback, he asked her," And why is that, my dear?"

"Honestly, Dad. You wear polos. you work on computers all day. How could you possibly know?" She cut her eyes back at me with a Cheshire grin. 

Uhm, how old is she?

Yours, wondering what it's going to be like when she learns how to drive,


Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Separate Birthday Parties?

I suppose I should count myself lucky. For 10 years we’ve been able to combine the boys’ birthday parties into one big one. You know, being twins and all, it just made sense. But this year, our luck ran out. They wanted two different parties this time. One wanted a winter tubing party at our local (fake) snow “mountain” while the other wanted a paint ball party when it gets warmer. And it’s not like we couldn’t invite one to the other’s party, right? So really, they’re each getting 2 parties. Hardly seems fair! (Really, I think they planned this out, but I’m keeping that opinion to myself!)

So here’s what we’re doing this year: we’re letting them each invite 2 friends to each party. Yes, they are both getting 2 parties, but they’re like mini parties! Oh, and goody bags? At 11 years old, I’m DONE with those! Actually, I was done with those last year. I figure I’m spending enough on the parties, they can give ME a goody bag!

Oh, and really? I’m pretty much done with parties, too! I have a feeling that they’re getting ready to outgrow them. I know I have!


Monday, February 13, 2012

Monday Madness: It takes a DEADLINE.

We were sitting on the couch, The Hubs and I. Resting from beginning his latest project, he asked,"When are you going to believe me when I say that I am going to do something?"

"What do you mean?" I replied, slightly confused. "You usually do... when you say you are going to..."
We had just finished taking out the wet bar and tearing down the wall that separated the living room and kitchen. He made me karate kick the dry wall down. I felt like Sif from Thor

However, when the project was started, he was not in such a good mood. He was frustrated that the bar had not been packed. Having been through this type of thing before, I simply got brought him some necessary items and then said,"I'm going to get out of your way, but I'll be in the dining room working on my class prep if you need anything." A wise wife knows when to go in the other room, keep herself occupied and pray. It came out later that he was angry with me for not being ready to work on the bar. Of course, I didn't know that he planned on working on it at that exact moment (reading minds is not one of Sif's Goddess attributes) and so he was angry with me that I had not done what he had asked me to do.

Or did he? I recall him asking,"Honey, can you pack up the bar?" a few days ago. "Well, yeah. I can get that done." I said. "Okay," he said and walked away.
There was no mention of when. No words such as,"I'd like to take the wetbar out on Sunday afternoon and I will need it to be packed up by then."

When he explained that to me as we were sitting on the couch, that that's what he had MEANT when he asked if I could... meaning to do it right away... I couldn't help but giggle. 

"Honey," I said, choosing my words cautiously,"Just because you asked if I could, doesn't really imply to me that you want me to do it right away. I need a deadline. I am inspired by DEADLINES. Just because I didn't do it right away does not mean I don't believe you. It just means I didn't know when you wanted it done because you didn't tell me."

Yet ANOTHER clear example of the gap in communication that exists between The X Chromosome People and The Sif. 

Yours, wondering if that gap might ever be bridged,


Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Time WHATament???

Yeah, so Melissa called me out last week. I didn’t blog. Of course, neither did she, so I don’t feel so bad. (Actually, I feel worse because that means nobody blogged here, but we’ll just be moving on now.) At least she had a valid excuse – she had a nasty head cold. Me? Well, I just plain forgot!

I’m having a little problem with Time Management lately. Now that I’m back at work, albeit part-time, I’m finding it a little difficult to work everything in that I’m used to doing. You know, lunches with girlfriends, working out, watching Dr. Phil (Yes, I watch Dr. Phil, my one REAL afternoon vice. And no, I can’t watch it at night because my husband will make fun of me!), working on The Caregiver Organizer, shopping, and all that important stuff! Okay, well SOME of it’s important!

I guess that’s the problem. I’m not really prioritizing the way I should be. And though I KNOW that in my head, I’m just not there yet in my actions. You know what I mean? I think I’m so overwhelmed with my disorganization right now, that any time I try to dig out, I bury myself even deeper. It’s not a good feeling, believe me!

So I’m leaving tomorrow for 3 days of Weight Watchers training away from home. This will be awesome! Three entire days of nothing else to think about but learning how to be the best leader they have! And when I get home, I can look at everything else with a fresh outlook.

Hmmm, maybe I can even start with those taxes!


Monday, February 6, 2012

Monday Madness- The Times, They Are a Changin'!_

Monday, Monday, Monday.... today I considered calling in, just to rest from this cold, but that would have made me one in 7 million people who will call in the day after Superbowl (YAY Giants!). I figured it was probably not a good idea and that I should soldier through. I'm hoping to save a day off for something a little more fun, anyway.  :D

I'm hitting one of those transitional periods in life. When isn't one in transition, really? But these are more apparent, lately. I've finally registered my son for Middle School. I cried. I couldn't help it. It's not that I want him to stay little forever. Friends assure me that the teen years will take care of any feelings of "Please don't grow up and leave me!". But right now, it's hard to see that. 

On the other end, I was sitting in a meeting today and my cell phone buzzed. I looked down and saw it was my mother. I didn't hesitate. I answered it right away. Wait. When did THAT happen? I mean, when did I start looking down at the caller ID and wondering if everything was okay when I saw that it was her? And I'm beginning to fill in more lines in our book- The Caregiver Organizer for MY Aging Parents.    
Did it ever seem possible that our parents would age? I'm handling it about as well as I'm handling Middle School registration. I'm holding on for dear life and trying to soak up every single minute. I'm answering the phone. I'm making myself call more often. I'm making sure I'm home by the time the kids get home so I can have time with them and also taking them to see my parents more often.

Oh the circle of life. I know it's a reality. Today it just seems a little more prominent. So I'll enjoy every moment I can and teach my children to do the same.  

And now, time to go get the Lola-nator who's gotten into a cloth bookmark and is trying to eat it while being chased and yelled at by Z2. Yes, I'll even enjoy THIS moment.

Yours, soaking it all in,


Saturday, February 4, 2012

Saturday Sass

I know, I know... something happened and both Karen and I went a week without blogging. She's been busier than Christmas and I've had a nasty head cold. My lips swell and chap when the cold is severe. Suffice to say, my lips are bigger than Angelina Jolie's on collagen shots. I'm really hoping to be better come Monday. I promise we'll get back to normal next week!

Yours, blowing my nose again,