Friday, July 29, 2011

Fry day

What I brought for my morning snack this morning: Strawberry Greek yogurt.

What I ate for my snack this morning: pack of M&Ms. 

Our house is completely torn apart.  The kitchen renovation forced us to put our crap elsewhere, and it has overtaken every other bit of room in our house.  Demolition was yesterday.  There are slivers of wood and staples on the floor of every room.  Thank goodness I hate to be barefoot.  I always wear shoes.  Forced the children to wear shoes.  They were not happy. 

Further evidence that our townhouse is a POS: When the drywall was pulled off the walls in the kitchen, it was discovered that the builder put all his trash behind the walls.  Drywall, papers, leftover wire, junk. It was next to exposed wiring and a fire hazard.

I knew ahead of time that the contractors would using our bathrooms, but I found one of my books in the powder room last night. It wasn't there yesterday morning. I shuddered in horror. Thankfully, I was finished with it. Might as well leave it in there so they don't take another. Maybe that's judgy and snobbish but I don't go to other people's homes and take one of their books into the crapper to read while I take a dump.  Am I the only one?

The kids are pissed because there is a ton of our junk and a tall kitchen cabinet that have been put in front of the TV.  We can't reach the cabinet to open it up, so they can't watch TV.  Also, we took them to The Diet Coke Store (McDs) last night and REFUSED TO LET THEM GET A TOY!  And no dessert.  And they had to eat fruit.  At The Diet Coke Store.  The horror.  It's inhumane, and I expect them to call Amnesty International any day now. 
Our cabinets were supposed to be framed and hung today, but since the drywall was taken down, it was decided that the electrician needed to come first and rough in the wiring.  And they don't know if that will happen today.  So, great, a weekend of cabinets in the living room and no TV. Great.  What am I supposed to do with the children???

Other things that happened yesterday:

-Trips to book store, used book store, and library.
-Two trips to the neighborhood nursery for plants.
-Got the Batmobile inspected.
-Got massage.
-Toy store for some gift closet things.
-Had lunch with The Spouse.
-While I technically had a vacation day, my boss forgot I was out of the office and emailed me all day with stuff, which I responded to and took care of.  Until it was time to attend a 3pm meeting.  Then he was not happy I took such a long lunch.

The heat and ungodly humidity is back just in time for the weekend.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Kitchen remodel

Today is the longest day ever.  Ok, not as long as my 8th grade science class, but close (apologies to Mr. Kinnear.)  The humidity has broken.  It's still in the 90's, but a much drier heat.  I want to be outside!

I took the Dynamic Duo to the dentist this morning.  Batman has no cavities.  Neither does Robin, but he does have an anomoly of weak enamal on his tooth that has to be filled.  Coincidentally, so does Sally.  Hmm.  So, like Sally, Robin will need to go in for a filling.  I'm hoping The Spouse can do it.  Not that I'll be all emotional about my baby getting gassed, more like I don't want to deal with the screaming before/after.  I took two kids to the dentist today, the least he can do is take one for the follow up.

Following the appointment, I took the kids to an early (for me), dropped them off at school, and came in to the office.  I'm used to having my hour lunch to read, go for a walk, and get away from C-SPAN.  Gah!!  I'm losing my mind.  Only 1.5 hours to go.

Our kitchen remodel begins Thursday.  We still have a bit to pack up in the kitchen, but I would say we are over halfway there.  We have moved the china cabinet and bookshelf.  Tonight we will move the microwave cart and pack up the dishes (and pick up the new microwave).  Tomorrow night, we will do whatever is left.  I'm not looking forward to the process, but I am looking forward to a more functional kitchen.  We have been told it will take four weeks.

Our townhouse is a piece of shit.  The builders did not have a buyer for it prior to completion, so it was not upgraded at all.  It has a poor layout, awkward angles, and dead space.  When you combine that with builder grade materials, you get a piece of shit. 

This week marks our eight year anniversary of living in the POS.  Why have we been there that long?  The neighborhood is good, with excellent amenities.  It's close to stores, daycare, The Spouse's office, the freeway.  But, most importantly, it's cheap.  We bought it before we had kids, and just before the market really took off.  We are one of our few neighbors that is not underwater in our mortgage (thank you, God!).  We are lazy.  We could sell it and buy a SFH, but we would have to do a ton of cleaning and maintainence on a larger, more demanding home(see: We are lazy).  Someday, we will move but for now we live in our cheap POS.  We spend our leftover (small amount - two kids in daycare) money taking vacations.  We visit our families.  We buy new clothes.  We bought the Batmobile last year.  These are all things we couldn't do if we bought a large SFH.  This is a crazy thought in America in this age, but we live below our means.  However, we foresee the day that we will sell or rent out the POS townhouse, and we are updating/upgrading it tpward that goal.  The kitchen is the first (and largest) step.  We hope to get to enjoy it for a few years before we move. 

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Helter Skelter in a summer swelter

My God, it is hot out there.  The heat wave that baked the Midwest earlier this week has landed in DC.  Hot, humid, flesh melting. 

I miss Central California heat.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Today's Civics Lesson

All political conversations in Washington this summer seem to start and end with the debt limit.  For example, “Any news about the debt discussion?” Same old stalemate.  When do you think the Senate will act on Ag Approps?”  “Not until a deal is reached on the debt.” 

The U.S. government hit the debt ceiling on May 16th, and Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner told Congress he would have to suspend investments in federal retirement funds until August 2nd in order to create room for the government to continue borrowing in the debt markets.  No one knows exactly what will happen if the debt ceiling isn’t raised by August 2nd, but the general consensus is that can’t be good.  One Senator has compared this summer to the movie “Groundhog Day”.  It’s a fitting analogy. 

This dilemma challenges House and Senate leadership to prioritize which legislation will be deemed important enough – or sufficiently “completed” – to earn floor time. The issues likely to reach critical mass are dwindling to a precious few.

See, kids, government can be fun!

(Obviously, I ripped the graphic off from NBC.  Just in case there was any confusion.)

Friday, July 15, 2011

Thanks Mom(s)!

Nearly everyone has another mother.  Not the woman who raised them, bathed them, punished them, or made their birthday cake.  I'm talking about the other mother.  The woman who lived next door or across the street.  Your best friend's mom or mom's best friend.  A favorite aunt or a kind teacher who took a special interest in you.  The Other Mother. 

I have been very lucky and blessed to have been the beneficiary of several Other Mothers.  Some have come and gone in my life (we moved a lot as I grew up), there for a particular time or purpose when I needed them.  Others have been lifelong Other Mothers that are now Other Grandmothers to my children.  Every one of them have taught me something about what it means to love a child and what it means to be a woman.

My Other Mothers have taught me to cook, listened to secrets, driven carpool, let me hang out in their homes, corrected my manners, indulged my strong personality, and blasted favorite Madonna songs in the car.  My Other Mothers weren't perfect.  They weren't a replacement for my mom.  They weren't necessarily women I aspired to be, but they all loved me, looked out for me, and made me feel safe and secure.

One of my Other Mothers recently passed away.  It's been 20+ years since she was a regular part of my life.  I went away to college, moved across the country, got married and started a family of my own.  It hasn't been until I became and adult and a mother that I really appreciated everything she did for me those four years she was my Other Mother.  I'm sure I drove her up the wall and was ungrateful, taking advantage of/for granted her hospitality and generosity. In recent years, I have begun to appreciate all of the sacrifices that she made for me, on top of what she did for her own kids, family, job, and life.  I am afraid I never properly thanked her for everything she did for me.  I wish I had.

I hope my children are lucky enough to have Other Mothers as wonderful as mine have been.  I hope that when a child I know needs anOther Mother, I'm wise enough to fill those shoes.  I hope I do as good a job for them as all my Other Mothers have done for me.

Thanks to the Other Mothers out there, both mine and everyone else's.  Your fingerprints and legacies will live on in our hearts and lives long after you have left us - or we have left you.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Photo shoot

I bought a Groupon for a photo shoot (I know, I know) hoping for the best but expecting the worst.  Robin gives the camera a stink eye every. single. time. he gets his photo taken.  It's just a part of his personality.  Batman grew up watching America's Next Top Model, so he knows to capture the light and smize at the camera. 

I had high hopes that having a photographer follow the children around for 1.5 hours would give me a pretty good selection to choose from - and it did.  For Batman.  Poor little Robin just doesn't have "it".  He will never be a finalist on ANTM. 

(all rights to these photos have been purchased by me, and I have the sole authority to authorize their use - MOM! - so don't copy/paste/photoshop/otherwise use without my explicit permission.)

I had some serious sister wife hair at the time of the shoot, and I miss it.  Not loving my suburban soccer mom 'do.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011


There is a crud going around my office and now I have it.  NO!  This is not acceptable.  I do not like to be sick in the summer.  Furthermore, it is my job, as a mother of young children in daycare, to bring the crud to the office, not the other way around.  Of course, the children will also get it.  This is simply unacceptable.

In other news, summer's humidity has descended upon DC.  I prefer Central Valley heat.  When it's in the triple digits, you can look at a thermometer and confirm it is indeed 111 degrees today.  Here, there is some convoluted heat index system that requires you to multiply temperature by humidity level by day of the month by how angry you are to sit in traffic.  Today's result - 105 degrees.

We had family game night last night.  Robin played an entire hand of Uno by himself - and WON!  I was very proud.  Of course, I was also coaching him.  Batman was a somewhat gracious loser.  We are grooming our children for college drinking games by requiring them to say, "Batmobile on the streets of Gotham" when playing a Batmobile card (Batman Uno deck, natch.)  Batman began doing it about a year ago, and now it's a game rule.  Only thing missing are the shots of Jaeger. 

Life has been a whirlwind lately.  Minor league baseball games, July 4th at Mt. Vernon, Smithsonian Folklife Festival, birthday and pool parties, swim lessons, getting (baby-no-more) Robin in his big boy bed, and preparing for the upcoming kitchen remodel.  Plates for the Batmobile have arrived, but I have yet to brave the heat to attach them to the car.  So I am still incognito when I'm out and about fighting crime. 

On that note, there is a Joker down the hall I better go deal with.