Tuesday, January 31, 2012


Last year, I posted 27 blog entries. I wrote a few more than that, but decided they didn't need to live anywhere public.

Today is the last day of January, and this is my 27th blog entry for 2012.

My intention this month was to just try to produce, to DO something, anything. Too many days are passing where I can't point to anything tangible that I've accomplished, beyond clean dishes or laundry. This month was about just putting it out there, without over-thinking, or editing myself too much. To simply hit "post" even it I didn't have anything earth-shattering to share, to not worry about the judgements of others. It was about capturing some of the small moments that get lost all too easily.

I didn't have a number in mind when I started, nor any real goal other than "DO!" Last week I happened to see the number of posts of last year and I decided I wanted to meet or exceed that number for this year. Such a small, silly goal, but when you are in the middle of a windstorm or uncertainty about your life and career, it can help to grab on to the tiniest branch, some small goal to achieve.

Right now the optimism of two weeks ago has waned. I had two great interviews... and then nothing. No calls. It's like I can't get past a second date, even when I thought that they liked me. I've applied to more jobs since then, and even have a second interview today (for a job that I'm conflicted on, honestly), but I feel dejected. Even more insulting is that two of the resumes that I sent out last month to jobs that I am, without any type of doubt, qualified for; that were two national nonprofits that I have deep ties to, totally dissed me. Colleagues back in Florida called and emailed the local branches to recommend me. I thought- as did the nice people who went to that trouble for me- that I would at least get a foot in the door, an interview.

One place never responded to the two follow-up calls and emails.

Did I mentioned that I have raised over $20,000 for one of the nonprofits? As a volunteer?

If I were unqualified, I would understand.
If they had an internal candidate, and sent a "thanks, but no thanks" email, I would be sad, but still understand.
But to be so unprofessional, so disrespectful to their other councils, to not even acknowledge my contacts...

Well, I won't be raising money for them again in any way.

It is very, very difficult to break into the cliques here.
It appears you either have to be:
Texan (preferably born in the state, but it looks like they will grant you clemency after about 5-10 years, if you are married to a native).
Or, have friends or family who are rich Texans.

Stop my own company? Find a new career track? Start back at the bottom? Move?

Let's see what the next 27 days holds.

When Food is Love In Tallahassee

I'm missing some of my old haunts today, so I decided it was time to pay tribute to three of my favorite places to grab tasty happiness in Tallahassee. If you find yourself in the Florida capital, do yourself a favor and go to one of these places (or all three, in the name of supporting locally owned business!)

Big Easy Snowballs

Friendly family business with an adorable shop and great customer service...
Oh, and did I mention...

Don't tell me that you don't know what a snowball is. Seriously??? I'll wait here while you Google it. Back now? Okay then, go get yourself one now.

Lucy And Leo's

Another adorable tiny shop, this time full of cupcakes (and shared space with Textures, a great place to stock up on awesome local art and handmade goodness).

It's hard to go wrong with a cupcake, but my favorite is a fresh Red Velvet, topped with Cream Cheese. In the name of research, I have tried many other cupcake shops during my travels, and this Red Velvet still reigns supreme. The Happy Hour flavors are also fun. But as much as I love the cupcakes, I *ADORE* the canned ham that they take around as a food truck. My love for vintage trailers is legendary and the first time they brought their restored Shasta out to display in the parking lot, I was first in line to see it. I was afraid that they might pull a restraining order against me, keeping me from that hunk of metal lovin'.

And finally,


Angelette's Cajun Cooking will fool you. You will drive up to the strip mall where it is located, and think perhaps that you are lost. But then you will most likely see a group of people outside, waiting to get in to get a hit of some awesome Cajun food.

I was one of the firsts to find this place after they opened and one taste of the Shrimp and Grits is all it took to make me a regular. The owner, Marlo, will chat with you if the place isn't slammed... which honestly, isn't often now that the secret it out. I hope they eventually get a bigger place, but for now it's classy and simple, with great artistic interpretations of fleur de lis on the walls.

I joyfully introduce as many people as possible here, and thus far I have taken about 20 different people who are now also addicted. My favorite dish, besides the shrimp and grits, is the Eggs A'la Dwayne.

LittleMan and his best friend enjoy the beignets... Or rather, the beignet sugar...

I've Come to Suck Your Blood

A few weeks ago, I was having a particularly grumpy/sad day. LM made this for me and slid it under the door. It just makes me smile :)

Monday, January 30, 2012

Finding Family Fun

As much as we love the weekend, we often squander it away, and then feel grumpy about that waste. Money is tighter than ever, but we had exhausted many of the free things that we like to do and we were restless on Saturday. So I pulled out one of those coupon magazines that come in the mail quarterly. Inside was a coupon for IT'z, which is a big family fun zone.

Generally, this is the type of place I avoid at all costs. They reek of wasted money, violence, and ill-behaved monsters (and their children). In fact, when we have passed it before on the interstate (usually while driving to the DFW airport) I make it quite clear that it would be a great father/son activity. You know, to do without me, while I am off getting pampered by a legion of beautiful Greek men who feed me grapes.

Alas, grapes are out of season.

After performing a variety of computations worthy of that guy from A Beautiful Mind, I finally came to the best use of coupons so we could get some serious bang for our buck.

So off we went. First stop was the AYCE Buffet, full of pizza, pasta, salad and dessert. You must purchase the buffet to get into the facility. The food was edible, and child-friendly. I compare it to a CiCi's pizza place- nothing I would choose at free will, but it gets the job done. This place also had baked potatoes and one of their pastas was pretty good, so I consider that a win.

We went on a Saturday night, so it was busy, but we got the boys an "unlimited activities" game card (that buy one, get one free coupon definitely made that possible!) so we were off to get in line.

First for the bumper cars...

(yeah, I am totally getting in on the bumper cars when we go back on a less crowded day. As it was, I didn't want to make the poor kids wait any longer.)

Then it was on to the race track, in which my guys got a really slow car. There was a lot of waiting all around.

And then there was the mini-bowling, which we did for a long, long time. It was a great combo of bowling and bocce ball.

We did tons of videos games and ended five- yes, five hours later- at the laser tag. This was the first time we have all done this, and it was a blast.

It was not a cheap evening, but we made sure to eek out every last dime's worth :)

We'll be back!

I'm Sorry to Inform You...

I am not a site for exploring manatee sex.

I have no pictures of manatee penises.

My apologies.

(This is what I get for looking at my stats page. The traffic sources are truly frightening).

And Now I Present... The First Report of Kindergarten!

LittleMan had to do a "report" for his kindergarten class. Basically, they had to pick a sea animal and do three facts and an illustration. Here are some things we learned:

Facts About the Leafy Sea Dragon

(this picture is from the Wikipedia page about the animal. The Internet never ceases to amaze me).

Habitat: The leafy sea dragon lives off the Western and Southern coasts of Australia.

Leafy Sea Dragons grow to about 14 to 18 inches.

They are related to the seahorse.

The leafy sea dragons have no teeth, and they eat very tiny shrimp-like creatures. They also have no stomach, so they have to eat constantly so they don’t starve.

Their eyes can look in different directions at the same time.

The leafy sea dragon picks a partner and stays with them their whole life.

I'll admit- even I learned a lot in this project. Since most of his class wanted to do their reports about seahorses, I tried to get LM to think beyond the most common animals. We played on Google and found some cool stuff.

Now go find yourself something weird and new to learn a tiny bit about today!

Friday, January 27, 2012

To Be That Mom

I always bought lunch as a kid. I remember a lot about standing in the lunch lines, and the various meals that I loved and hated.

I don't remember ever much having a packed lunch, except for field trips.

But I do remember what other kids brought in their packed lunches (and how bitter I was when the skinny popular girl had Little Debbies every day with her lunch and I wondered why she could eat that and didn't get fat, while I did. And how sad it makes me to realize I was thinking that in the second grade.)

Never mind all that. Back to the topic.

I've been packing lunch for LittleMan in his Marvel Superheroes Lunch Bag since the beginning of school. He has bought a school lunch a handful of times, but doesn't seem to care for it and I am always unimpressed with his reports back of what he did buy. And I've stay fairly organized in this endeavor, with a special cabinet, refrigerator drawer, and freezer section dedicated to the special treats I buy or make ahead for his lunch. Sometimes I even get hyper organized, and pre-package a bunch of bulk items.

The main goal, of course, is to make sure he has healthy food that he likes eating.

But a close second to that goal is a deeper, more insidious one...

I've always wanted to be the kind of mother who puts loving and encouraging notes in a lunchbox.

And so, I am.

These are just from the last three days, but they represent a lot to me.

I could make a bunch of neat notes with cool pictures and cut them out and have them waiting to pack with lunch. In an hour or two, I could knock out enough cute notes to last the rest of the school year.

Efficient, yes, but it defies my point. The note isn't about perfection. Or efficiency. It isn't about being frame-worthy. It gets wet and crumpled in the box, and then later in LM's pocket, where he likes to pull it out a lot to look at it.

These are just little snippets, either from books that we like to read together or things that we say. They are not treaties on the nature of love. I don't need to write a novella.

Little notes written on the paper from a cute set my sisters gave me for Christmas. A little picture of the Eiffel Tower in the corner, which LM loves to tell people that his mommy and daddy have visited. And hopefully we can someday take him and have a family picnic beneath.

The notes.
They are quick, impulsive, messy, private, and important, just like our family.
They are now.
And someday, they will be later. The past.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Please Stop Clawing at My Eye

I should have known it would be a weird day.

It started this morning, when I was trying to get LM out the door on time and he couldn't find his shoes. Since I harp every night about putting them in the same place... and they often don't get there... I raised my voice a tad this morning.

Which resulted in LM's tears. Argh. We'd had such a good run of peaceful, happy mornings.

I rushed home, got my Interview-A-Saurus outfit on, and off I went to an interview.

As soon as I was done, I ran home to change shoes and off to school. As I got out of my car, two tiny dogs came running up to me, barking furiously. They didn't attack, but their eyes looked like they were channeling hell hounds.

I should have headed the warning.

When I walked into the school library- where I volunteer weekly- the librarian is on her way out. She's sick and leaving. I am left with a woman that I have worked with before- I don't know her name, but she can be frustrating to work with because she'll interrupt me in the middle of doing my job in order to "show me" what I am already doing. She also has a very intense language barrier. I believe she is originally from China, and her English is very difficult to understand. I try to take the cultural difference into account when she does a number of rude things, and just try to smile and be kind.

Today, however, she was the sub for the librarian. And it was painful to watch.

To further add fun, it was my son's class in the library. One of his little friends- we'll call her Taz- has what appears to be a severe case of ADHD. For the past seven months, I often see her get in trouble, get sent to the hall, constantly redirected, etc. Earlier this week, she slapped my son in order to get his attention on the playground, because she wanted him to do her bidding. I try to redirect her and entertain her every week to keep her out of trouble, but it's a struggle.

Today it was impossible.

It was like someone had laced her lunch with Red Bull.

Generally, I feel sorry for these kinds of kids. Their little bodies betray them and make learning and behaving more difficult than it is for the average bear cub.

After all the gentle redirecting I could muster for the first 25 minutes of class, I noticed her throwing her headband on the floor next to her chair. It was a cute band with a little crystal flower on it- guaranteed to get crushed by all the mini-rhino children who were lumbering about.

"Taz," I tell her gently, "your headband is on the floor. Pick it up before it gets broken."

I turn to help a child tie his shoe, I redirect another leaking snot, and try to redirect the girl who goes to the nurses office weekly by pretending to be very interested in her coloring.

Headband still on the floor, all pink and ready to break.

Mind you, I am only a parent volunteer (but, as my old boss will tell you, I *used* to be a teacher. So I do take some pride in knowing the deal.)

"Taz," I say again, "Please pick up your headband before it gets broken."

I give her a minute to respond. She bounces around her chair, a challenge in her eyes. I move closer, while also fielding a request about where to put a certain book and commenting on more crayon creations.

"Hey Taz," I say, bending down to be at her face height, "if I have to tell you again to pick that up, I'm going to get it myself and take it to the office."

That just made her gleeful.

The response I get:
"I don't want to pick it up, mamamahshhshghahahhaahah!"

So, I walk over to the headband and pick it up. She thinks this is a fun game now, so she starts slamming against me, trying to claw the band out of my hand. This game is clearly less fun for me, and I have to push her arms down repeatedly to keep from losing an eye.

I walk over to the circulation desk, put the band down, and tell her she can have it back when the classroom teacher comes to pick up the class.

This doesn't bode well.


Now, my son had previously mentioned that his little friend often cries a lot when she gets in trouble, and I'd seen it happen before. Not like this, though.

She goes wild, flailing at me and at the desk, trying to get to the headband. It was like a horror movie. I kept using my calm teacher voice, but it was as effective as spitting on a fire.

Have I mentioned I am a volunteer? That I work for free? That I have other things that I could do for free?

Then she sits in the middle of the floor, sobbing, wailing. Luckily, it's a big place. I explain what's happening to the sub, and also to the high school student who comes in weekly to help too. The same student who had come to me 20 minutes earlier, also having problems with a rude and hyper Taz.

The other kids were at different stations around the room. There were a few comments, but it appeared that they had seen this scene before.

Finally the teacher comes, and I pull her in to explain the issue. She nods wearily- after all, this isn't her first time in the rodeo either. Taz is bouncing off kids in line at this point, then sits back down to have a good ole' meltdown. The teacher has a few words with her, then takes the class down the hall.

I give Taz a few minutes to sit there, letting her- I hope- self-calm.
And I try again, because I am a glutton for punishment.

"Taz, honey," I say, "I think that you can make some good choices now and join your class and make the rest of the day a good one."

I tried many similar statements, channeling a combo of Mr. Rodgers and Bob Ross.

Alas, there were no happy trees.

She finally leaves for class. Or maybe to get a chain saw. I'm not certain.

At this point, the next class is there. This is usually when I leave, but I agree to stay for a few minutes to help check everyone in.

Which turns into what my military friends refer to as a "Charlie Foxtrot."

Taz had messed with the circulation computer when I left her to calm down.


Thus ensuing many hijinks and *headdesking*.

I've mentioned that I don't get paid for this, right?

When I finally leave, I stop in the teacher's lounge to get my reward- my cold can of Coke.

Except, a Diet Coke came out instead.

I didn't notice that until I got in the car, however. I was heartbroken.

I live for the one can of Coke a week.

As I type this, an SUV pulls up to the house. A women wants to talk to the owners of the house (we'll renting) that appears to be in foreclosure.

Is it a full moon?

I only have 15 minutes before walking back to school to pick up my boy. I should probably eat something, because I feel that low blood sugar-stabby sensation coming on.

Have I mentioned...I'm really looking forward to getting a job.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Pimp My Breakfast

My approach to cooking has been, at times, described as "adventurous," "creative," and also, "Good Lord, what Fresh Hell is this??" Despite my best efforts in building a rockin' recipe collection on Pinterest and through magazines and cookbooks, I still find that I do best when modifying existing products to bend to my warped mind.

A few weeks ago, I took a pack of muffin mix and decided to add some Benefiber to the mix to up the healthy factor. Then I got all excited- mostly, because I don't get out much- and decided to add some of the ground flax seed that I had in the fridge. When these little muffin monsters were done, I let them cool and then popped them in the freezer in a giant zip-lock bag.

Well, my LittleMan went crazy for them, and I felt like an evil genius for tricking him into eating some healthy vittles. So yesterday, I went back to make an even more evil, ur, I mean more healthy muffin batch.

Here's what I did:

I took two packs of the Martha White Whole Grains muffin mix. They were $1.00 each this week and each pack makes about six muffins. I know, I know- I could easily make muffins from scratch for much cheaper.

But this is about BIG PIMPIN' a normal mix, so back off.

Anyway, this mix only requires milk, so it's super easy. I put the two mixes in a bowl, then added the following:

Ground Flax Seeds
Dried Cranberries
Sliced Almonds

Now, this is the part where you would ask logical questions, such as "How much of each item did you add?" But I scorn these conventions. "I'm a REBEL! You can't fence me in!", I say (quietly, and mostly to myself).

Really, I mostly eyeball it. I'd say it was about a tablespoon of each of the first three ingredients, and two tablespoons of the last two. But don't play by my rules! Live a little!

I added the two cups of milk required by the mix, and then added two tablespoons of Greek yogurt, to moisten it up a bit more. And because Greek yogurt is so touted for it's health benefits, and I was secretly hoping it would lure Greek Gods to my house to sample my muffins (I have no idea why you are blushing/ giggling/ gagging at that comment. I simply like to share my baked goods, you evil pervert.)

Here are the results:

Yeah, I know they aren't that cute, but that's mostly because my oven is possessed by the Dark Lord and burns everything.

But they are tasty, and oh so fiber-licious. And when I stumble around the kitchen in the morning, I can just pop one of these puppies into the microwave for 20 seconds and my bleary-eyed baby can start his day off with a healthy serving of love. Since neither of us much like to eat in the morning, it's just enough to fill the tummy.

Stay tuned as I next explore the origins of the universe.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Oh What A Beautiful Morning...

He nibbled his banana, and I poured myself some coffee.

No frantic hurry this morning as I put on some comfy clothes over my PJs and we got into the car.

With the sunshine streaking the morning sky, we took the short drive to school.

I sang him the song that my dad sang to me to get me up during those school years long ago.

We sang my hubby's morning song.

We sang a bit of "My Favorite Things" and then some made-up songs about having a good day.

And as I watched his backpack bounce as he ran into school, I felt a surge of gratitude so overwhelming that I knew I would never be able to capture it in words.

Oh how the years go by...

Sunday, January 22, 2012

And That's What I Have to Draw About That...

While coloring with LittleMan last week, I decided to express my feelings over a recent social interaction. Not high art, but certainly captured the moment :}

B*Rex Versus The Manatee. Sometimes I try too hard to see the best in people.

Friday, Sunny Friday

Friday, January 20, 2012

Are You Ready, World?

Second interview today, at 9:00 am.

It's been a long time since I needed to both be somewhere at that time, and be dressed nicely with my hair all did and makeup that doesn't look applied in a train bathroom.

But I got my LittleMan up, and fed, and dressed and did the same for myself (all sans coffee. I really need to hit the grocery store).

School dropoff, and I was on the road by 8, which is good because even though it's about 10 minutes as the bid flies, it takes 45 minutes as the cars crawl.

I wore the jacket that I bought for my second interview at my last college job- which I started seven years ago, almost to the day. I got a compliment on the jacket, so I think it was the right move.

This was a group interview with other members of the staff. And I felt the last tiny slivers of indifference fall away. I want this job. Not for the job itself, necessarily. I mean, I can do it. Do it well. And learn and grow in the position, so that's nice. But more so, I like the people. They are nice, and intelligent, and for the first time I could see myself possibly wanting to make friends, to settle here.

I actually don't even know what it pays. But there would be benefits that would let me sleep a bit more soundly at night.

It went well, so now I wait.

I had a check in the mail when I got home, a rebate from my mortgage escrow account. And at lunch, this was my fortune:

Well, let's hope so.

Let's hope I am too.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Lustful Thoughts

Cooking dinner,
her thoughts drift to how smooth it was.
How silky the texture.
How hot it got,
but how it managed to clean up so quickly
no matter the mess.
True, it was pretty new.
Only two months to experience the novelty.
But already, it performed so much better than anything she'd ever had.

She stopped.
Embarrassed by the lust.
My God,
life had come to this.
She never imaged at 18 that being an adult
would be so...
like this.
And that she would catch herself so grateful for
a new

Lessons for the Morning

Busty manatees should not attempt to work out on a trampoline without serious chest reinforcements.

Let this be a warning to all potential rebounding manatees.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012


Semi-erotic dream about Star Trek?


Let me just say, that will certainly start your day in a very confusing way.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Alone in Your Crowd

I'll start with a disclaimer- I've had a bad night. So this post is not rainbows and puppies. And I have to be okay with that. It's okay to have dark moments, to not deny the lows.

It's stupid dark moments like this that I wonder if I'll ever be happy again.
Or I wonder if I've ever been happy.

It's stupid and melodramatic. Of course I've been happy.

This too shall pass.

And frankly, this is the only outlet I have for sadness.

But it may be time for me to do something radical to get me out of this slump. Perhaps take up mindful meditation.

Tonight I drove an hour in nasty rush hour traffic to join hubby and his fellow interns and director & her son. He was already on his second $8.50 margarita when I got there and the next two hours were torture- continuous inside jokes which amused them to no end, and made me feel so alone. I spent a lot of time looking as if I was really, really interested in the game of Angry Birds that my son was playing on hubby's phone. I tried to join in, to crack a joke... but it was just miserable.

Here's the thing- I've had my share of feeling like an outsider. Sometimes I even welcome it. But in the last ten years it has gotten a lot easier to get outside of myself and integrate into a crowd. With my fundraising jobs, I can usually turn "on" my extroverted self.

But tonight it just made me want to cry- the "partner" of mine that I've been with for so long often becomes a stranger to me. I know that I am at a low right now on my self confidence- I mean, I look like hell, I have no friends, and no job, and no sense of achievement in really anything at this point. That cup will be filled again- it's an ebb & flow. But in the meantime, it's hard to feel this way and then be around hubby and his much younger colleagues (who, by the way, wear size 1 jeans with stilettos heels and have pet names for him. Ugg.).

As I fight the sadness, soon anger comes to join in. I'm just so tired of giving up my life for this man. First it was Cincy, where I had an amazing job that I loved, a career that was really in a great place, and awesome friends that we hung out with. It was so hard to leave, and the landing in Florida was rough. I had to start all over and things were not promising at first. But after seven years of building a life there- and new friends, and family, and a flexible job- I had to say goodbye again. Each time, he has had a safety net- he has a built in community that he joins. Not so with me. And damn it, I have really, really tried here. I wanted to be happy, to have our family belong. Joining online groups. Mom groups. Volunteering. Going to church.

But I am more alone than ever.

And I think about going home.

Except, I don't really know where that is anymore. I miss friends and family in Cincy, but I don't want to live there again and my closest friends have mostly left that area anyway.

And I'm not sure Florida is home anymore either. I still have a house there. I still have contacts- heck, I got two unsolicited job offers while we were in the truck moving to Texas. And some family, and some friends. Of course, some scars too, but that's where that mindful meditation has to come in.

On a good day, I feel like home is wherever my husband and son are. On a day like today, it's just wherever I am with my son.

And hubby's looking at post-docs now, in the schooling that never seems to end. Looking all around the country. He makes a show like my opinion matters for something, but ultimately he applies to the places he likes and I have to go along for the ride. Of course, if I found something here that I liked & that paid well, he could find opportunities here. But the timeline is running thin- I am giving myself until February 1st to find a "real job." After that, I am simply going to find anything that pays me. In a way, I feel like it might be God's way of telling me not to settle here, to move'along little doggie.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012


The first time I heard this song, it was like it was plucked right from the heavens for my heart.

It Says Something About Me...

That this has been on my fridge for years, nestled comfortably between the inspirational quotes and calendars.

And it still makes me laugh.

Monday, January 9, 2012

The Sunday

Make it smell pretty, make it look nice.
The End is Near.
I watch through the veil of the new life in front of me,
taunted by wisps of strawberry blonde.
I decide I want to spend December 21, 2012 with family.
Face the world with faith and not fear, but still have a back-up plan.
I dip the bread, swallow the blood.
Then spend too much time in the steel cage.
Frantic whipping to fill the hunger.
Off again to the cage.
Muted wall, caffeinated air.
A table of only three, but still two hours of big words.
Exploring ideas.
Finding common ground.
Feeling vaguely human again.
Pondering the nature of evil. Of intention.
Home again, jiggity jog, but the boys are asleep.
So I engage in maternal allegations.
Dare the Aldi, a parallel universe.
But I emerge with a trampoline.
Playful food.
Digitally explore the Alamo, to learn. To remember.
Gratitude is the sound of cleaning.
Kisses too late in the night.

Oh The Places You'll Go...

I just thought we all needed this reminder today.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Ode to Black Leather

It does not matter that 372 women at church this morning were wearing them.

They have sensible heels, not stilettos.

I got them on sale at Kolhs, perhaps even using a coupon.


It doesn't matter.

When I slip them on, and feel the black leather mold itself around my thick calves, I am transported. I'm not going to book club. Oh no.

I am Mistress Manatee, Domesticated Dominatrix.

Saturday, January 7, 2012

In A Nod to the Soul Development I Still Need to Tackle...

When I think about winning the lottery, I first think of all of the wonderful things I could do for the people I love.

Then I think of all the nice surprises that I could give to people I like or who have only played smaller roles in my life, i.e. "Ten years ago, I saw you do something nice. Here's $1000."

Then I think of some of the selfish fun to have, like travel and start foundations and frivolous things.

And then, the troll in the back of my skull wakes up and reminds me how fun it would be to have money so I could just opt out.

Dealing with a jerk face? No thanks, I'm going to go swim in Caribbean instead.
Play along with social games? Nope, sorry, I'm busy funding micro-loans for women in South America.

And this post? This post is a quick reminder to me that I don't have to win the lottery for any of the scenarios, at least to some extent.

Friday, January 6, 2012

Hey There, Sexy Teeth!

Tooth satisfaction. I haz it.

When I was 16, and I had my first boyfriend, he gave me a colorful certificate for being "#1 Brusher."

He's now also a drag queen. This is in no way pertinent to the story, neither cause nor effect are implied, but I like to spice it up now and then some.

Anyway, I enjoy a high level of dental satisfaction. I brush like a fiend, and while I don't floss as much as I should, I have one of those tarter removing sticks and have great fun with it.

I use cheap brushes (they are now soft bristles, since my eager brushing has started to cause some gum recession. Damn, the recession is hitting EVERYWHERE!) and whatever toothpaste is on sale. I don't go to the dentist near as much as I should, due to the whole lack of insurance and money.

But I can hold my head up high in the dentist office. I don't have to slink out of it like a guilty fool, which is different from most medical visits (being built like a manatee and all).

Since we are sans insurance, I bought a Groupon- exams, cleaning, exam and whitening kit for $36! Whooohoo. I used it today and I could tell the dentist was disappointed that I wouldn't be giving him something to up-charge. In fact, he said he was jealous of my teeth.

It's the small victories. If only I could get people to call me back from all those resumes I sent out. I would show off my strong, hearty stock with these chompers. It may be hard to work into the conversation how smooth & clean my teeth feel.

Maybe I could just send my dental x-rays with my cover letters.

(These are not my teeth. But I found a way to tie back in the whole drag queen thing. You're welcome.)

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Third Personal Truth of 2012 (also known as five minute, bare-all therapy)

Love is scary.

As I child, I sought it constantly, devouring pages of romance novels, developing crush after crush, peering into the faces of strangers, taking any little scrap that was thrown at me.

At five, my first grandmother died. What I remember most of the funeral is my grandfather sitting in a chair, wailing and inconsolable.

My parents had it, but then lost it. Horrid fighting, bitterness, divorce replaced it. Sometimes, especially as I entered my preteen years, it seemed they lost it for me too. After a big, many weeks-long fight with my mom, I moved into my dad's house, and she was so angry at me that we passed on the street during a festival and she wouldn't even acknowledge me.

It was at this time, the summer between middle school and high school, that I finally realized one of the most powerful sources of love in my life- my grandmother, Rosemary. Frail after years of fighting cancer, she was still the most potent source of unconditional love I had. But it seemed that as soon as I finally "got it," she was gone. She was buried on the same day that my new half-sister was born, and I continue to mourn her 21 years later. And I mourn that I was so dense and absorbed in childhood to really appreciate her love while I had it here on earth.

I watched love continue to be found, to be swapped, to be squandered and abused, to be tossed about like currency, debated, to be created, to be lost.

I think a lot about if we "find love" or if we "make it." That answer, I believe, defines a lot about us.

Eighteen years ago, with a friend I've had since the 5th grade, I seemed to find the beginning of love. We played with the thought our senior year of high school, alternatively celebrating the wonder of it and then beating it like a pinata. We fought, and bickered, and kissed, and philosophized, and bucked the world, then started all over again. And in the 18 years since, we've been children and adults. We've grown and regressed. We've parted and come back together. We've fought for our love and almost destroyed it. We've celebrated our love, we've clung to it, we've thrown it away. We've questioned it, walked away from it, built it and been burnt by it. We've had to accept some truths, to settle, to be honest and to lie. To search and to be found.

And we're still doing those things.

The power of love is scary to me. It often seems that when I acknowledge it, when I stand in awe of it's immense presence, that it leaves. it changes. it morphs.

It's still worth it, the work of love. But it's scary.

And the most absolute terror is of my most sweeping, life-changing love with our son. He is the embodiment of our love, flesh and blood proof of our love. But so much more than that. And the swell of my love for him is overwhelming, breathtaking, and still stunning in it's magnitude. The thought of not having that love can reduce me to a quivering mess.

Love is scary. But then, so is the alternative.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Second Personal Truth of 2012

I want it all.

I love staying up till all hours reading. I love having the day to myself.
But I miss working. I miss having a purpose outside of myself.

I like having a small, manageable family. I love that we can take little trips. I love that my son is a cool little man and that I am over the days of changing diapers.

And then I see a picture of someone with a new baby and it always surprises me how it rips me to the core, makes me almost breathless with longing.

That's my truth for today- I have come to accept that I will always have disparate, sometimes contradictory longings (so many more than I am willing to list here).

And it's okay.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

First Personal Truth for 2012

Less Think, More Do!

It's time to turn all that thinking, that philosophy, that plotting, that gray matter into tangible results.

Less Think, More Do

Go Do.