Sunday, January 30, 2011

Breakfast at Our House

I need to also use this blog as a place to write down things that my girls say or do. I’m sad that I didn’t start this blog when Sugar was younger. I have notebooks of things that she’s funny stuff, but they are here and there throughout the household. So, if you don’t want to read about the things that randomly pop out of my girls’ mouths, skip this entry.

Given our strange work schedules, it’s not often that the four of us sit down for a meal together. Any time we have the opportunity, we take it. This morning I made Belgian waffles for us. The meal started off normally enough but somehow the conversation turned and no one really remembers how. It went something like this:

Spice: I’m glad I’m not a boy. Their privates are disgusting.

Me: How many boys’ privates have you seen?

Spice: Just one, Austins.

Sugar: Is he the one that peed on you?

Spice: Oh no, that was Nicholas and I didn’t see his privates. Austin pulled his pants down in the hallway though and showed everyone.

I was aware of this incident when it happened and had forgotten about it. Apparently, the image is still burned in Spice’s little head. He must have made quite the impression.

Later, I was folding laundry and Spice decided to help. She picked up a pair of EN’s boxers and started to fold and noticed the button on them. She said, “Oh look, Daddy’s panties have a little nose!” My eyes must have bugged out of my head because she looked at me and said, “Wow Mama, your eyes got big like mine.”

Part of me wonders where she comes up with this stuff. Another part of me is really to scared to want to know.

Ice Princess

Saturday, January 29, 2011

The Elliptical is NOT My Friend

I need to start this post with a gross factoid about me that is labeled TMI: too much information. But without this knowledge you won’t know where I’m coming from. I sweat. A lot. I have to wear extreme-strength deodorant/anti-perspirant daily, along with a healthy dose of baby powder. Even with that, I feel damp and sticky so I never wear anything too tight around my underarms. It’s odd then that I am not one of those drippy, wetty, sweaty people at the gym. I am not one of the people walking around with a towel mopping up behind me. Don’t get me wrong, I get a little “dewy” on the exercise bike and the treadmill. But shiny is all I get no matter how hard I work out.

I have been eyeballing the elliptical for weeks now. This machine appeals to me because the movement looks so graceful (which I am not) and every person using one is skinny as shit. I did 25 minutes on the treadmill and decided to try that elliptical.

I settle myself on the contraption and put my water in the cutesy cup-holder. I grab the handles and try to replicate the graceful movement of others around me. I’m sure that as I started I looked like an epileptic having a seizure. Ok, movement has come together, oh my dear GOD! My eyes filled with tears, then I saw nothing but red. As my vision cleared I could see that my heart had jumped out of my chest and was convulsing madly before my very eyes. This is nothing more than a torture chamber. I moved my arms and legs for what felt like an eternity, then stole a peek at the timer: one minute had passed. Are you kidding me?

It is at this point that I thanked God for giving me a thin body and tight, washboard abs. Had I been, let’s say, an almost 40 year old mother of two with a raging saggy baby belly, I would have felt that floppy mess wiggling and jiggling all over the place. It was a proud moment for me.

I clung to that thing and kept my arms and legs pumping for hours, ok… five minutes. I decided that I had to get off that fucking machine before the heart monitor exploded. As I stepped off the foot rests I noticed that my legs were quivering, my shirt was drenched. A quick peek in the mirror showed an agonized, bright red face. I was smoking hot in the most literal sense of the phrase.

I limped over to my favorite recumbent bicycle and rode for 20 minutes, a nice, gentle workout for an old fatty like me. I am going back to the gym tomorrow and you can bet your sweet ass that I’ll be back on that elliptical. Since I equate sweating and a ridiculous heart rate with weight loss, this machine is obviously the one  that is going to help me beat off this weight. 

Let’s see if I can make it to six minutes tomorrow. If you hear of a woman collapsing at the gym from a stroke, send cake.

Ice Princess 

Friday, January 28, 2011

Movin' Up!

If you were to read through what people wrote in my high school yearbook, you would learn a couple of things. First, people have always thought I was a bitch. I’m ok with that, it is what it is. Second, you would see that my intention after high school was to go to college to be a high school history teacher. I did go away to college right after high school and lasted one semester. I hated the school and the people. I lived off campus and had to work, so I really never had the opportunity to make friends. It was a terribly lonely time.

For a number of reasons, I’m glad I didn’t become a teacher. The pay isn’t great and kids kind of suck these days. I’m glad I’m not sitting in some classroom day after day with a bunch of students who don’t give a shit and are happy and allowed to tell me so. But I think I would have hated it most because there would be some students that would have an impact on me and I would miss them when they moved on. I wonder if that’s something that bothers real teachers?

The reason that this is on my mind today is because Spice is moving up in her daycare to the kindergarten room. I am ok with it but concerned because it is so late in the year. The kindergarten teacher has been there for years and was also Sugar’s teacher. She’s a great lady, but I don’t know how Spice will do with her rules and structured classroom. I’m not sure she’s ready for that and I’m not sure that the teacher is ready to take on the Divine Spice Girl.

Spice has moved up within the daycare annually and Sugar obviously changes teachers at the end of every school year. Never once in any of those transitions have I as a mother been ready for the change. Spice never seems to be bothered. She’s been at the daycare since she was six months old and knows everyone. To her, the change simply means a new room with new teachers and new toys. It’s an adventure.

Sugar made the switch to elementary school easily enough, but with each passing year, the end of the school year becomes harder and harder. Mostly it’s because she adores her teachers and she thinks the next one just can’t be as good as the one she just had. The end of 3rd grade was the absolute worst. She was mad for Ms. S and the feeling was mutual. The last day of school was devastating for Sugar and she spent the summer moaning about how much she would miss her teacher. Here we are more than halfway through fourth grade and Sugar still stops in to see her old teacher regularly. The bond was strong enough that Ms. S even came to see her skating competition a few months ago. How often do you find teachers that are willing to do that? I think her presence at the competition meant more to Sugar than the whole rest of us that were there to cheer her on.

The teacher that Spice leaves behind today has recently become a friend on Facebook and she knows about this blog. She’s been emailing me about the change and that she thinks Spice is ready for it. She told me about some paperwork that she had to fill out for the move up. One of the questions was something like, “What can the child never leave home without?” Her response was “A sleep toy and a fabulous outfit,” truly a perfect description of the girl who loves her stuffed animals and tutus. I love to hear this woman talk about Spice because she’s the mother of four grown boys. Her tolerance for bullshit is low, but you would never know it from watching her interact with Spice. This teacher listens to Spice’s tale of woe about how she forgot something at home or was somehow wronged by the world she’s attempting to twirl through, and she basically tells Spice to suck it up and move on. And Spice does it. I need to bottle that fancy teacher-talk and use it at home.

As my girls grow up it seems harder on me than on them to leave behind this path of wonderful women who have cared for my girls all day long. They’ve worked with them to be better, smarter human beings. They love them and cherish them, they know my babies as well as I do. It takes special people to do this job and to every year prepare a new group of kids to leave them nine months later.

As a mother, I welcomed these babies into my life knowing that I would have at least 18 years to be with them constantly. When they leave me for greener pastures, I am sure I will be devastated. How you, my teacher friends, are able to say good-bye year after year is impressive to me. My hat is off to you. I thank you tremendously for loving and taking good care of Sugar and Spice. They will remember you always. 

Ice Princess

Thursday, January 27, 2011


Take a moment to peruse the right side of your screen. Yeah, that’s right, there are four followers now. Having followers makes me feel tremendous, like a leader of a pack or something. It doesn’t matter to me that the three blogs I follow have HUNDREDS of followers. It’s a goal to work towards.

I am feeling ridiculously frustrated, downright pissed. I’ve been working out as much as I swore I would. I spent two weeks at the gym with Skinny Bitch and now working through my second week of doing gym workouts on both weekend days and two cardio sessions during the week. Given that I went from zero activity a month ago to a reasonable level, I thought I’d be down significantly. That is not the case and I’m pissed. From the highest of my weight to today, I’m down maybe three pounds. What do I have to do, beat this ass off with a stick?

The gal I work with has said time and again that my issue is that I don’t eat enough. How can that be? I eat all the time! My idea of dieting is to cut back, I don’t deny myself anything, I just try to eat less. I know myself well enough to realize that if I gave up eating my favorites, sooner or later it’ll all come crashing down and I will binge. I will go from cabinet to cabinet in my kitchen eating everything that doesn’t run from me. So I allow myself smaller portions of pizza, chips, birthday cake, whatever. I lost weight using this method before, so it should work again. If any of you decide to leave a comment about how OLD I am and how much harder it is to lose weight when you are OLD, I will ban you from this blog. Follower or not, I will ice you out.

I thought about joining Weight Watchers again, but I really don’t feel like doing that. I’m not a Meeting Girl and most people annoy me. I started searching around online for something that might help. Of course I don’t want to pay either, I’m a cheap bitch like that.

Two weeks ago I came across First, it’s free. Second, there’s so much you can do on this site. You can look through recipes, blog, chat on message boards, track your fitness and caloric intake. And again, it’s free. What’s not to love?

I set up a profile and entered my current weight and goal weight (ouch)! I started tracking my fitness and most importantly, I started tracking my eating habits. Since I’m an anal-retentive, Type A shrew, I manually enter the nutrition information from the food I eat. I enter everything, even the one teaspoon of sugar in each of the two coffees I have at work every day. Since I’m entering the nutrition information right from the food and double checking their math on my own calculator, I know their numbers are right.

The results were stunning. With all the shit I eat, I’m low on calories and fat every single day. I didn’t even cheat and entered the couple of beers I had last night. I’m still not taking in enough calories. WTF? Seriously? I eat bad food. It’s become obvious that the oatmeal I eat for breakfast daily, the small lunch and the two snacks in between just aren’t enough. I come home from work and need to eat a dinner that equals 1,000 calories. The days of eating a head of romaine lettuce and a few croutons for dinner are over. I’m about to become best friends with the people that work at the Subway next to the gym.

What idiot ever put a gym next to a fast food restaurant anyway?  

Ice Princess

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Must Love Dogs

We are animal lovers. I have had a variety of pets since I left my parent’s house at 18. I’ve had a bird, cats and dogs. Without a doubt, dogs are my favorite. They greet you at the door every day and they are always excited to see you. We currently have two dogs and I would absolutely have more but EN swears “NO MORE.” Besides, people give you funny looks if you have more than two.

Brigette was my first dog. Her mother was a purebred Keeshond and belonged to my aunt. One day, the dog went for an unsupervised walk around the neighborhood and came home knocked up. Brigette was born on April 10, 1992. She came to live with me later that year and was by far the worst dog I ever owned. She was downright naughty. She never met a piece of candy or trash can that she didn’t covet. She was spoiled rotten and was never even left home alone until she was more than six months old. I paid for that dearly and she never behaved when left unattended. She tore through linoleum flooring, solid wood doors, couches… you name it. Brigette had bad hips and I was told when she was a puppy that I could expect her to live to be eight years old. Her hips never stopped her and she near doubled her life expectancy. She had a big mouth and barked at everyone, but was loyal to me and very protective, especially when EN was away from home. She was a big, strapping girl, weighing in around 70 pounds at her high point. But for as big and mouthy as she was, she was terrified of loud noises and thunderstorms.
Brigette loved nothing better than a good snowstorm!

In the fall of 1993, my sister ran into an old friend who had come across a dog that she couldn’t keep. My sister called me to see if I would take her and swore that this dog would be small, “She has little feet!” Dusty kept her little feet her whole life but her body grew to about 55 lbs around those feet. She and Brigette became best friends and slept together and raised hell together daily. Their escapades are still spoken of with reverence all these years later: the cheesecake they stole off a counter during a dinner party; the 5 lb bag of sugar they ripped open and spread all over the kitchen floor (for those of you not in the know, dog spit + sugar = glue which must be removed by scraping with a plastic spatula); their road trip to the local pizza joint on trash night…

Dusty always wanted to be with her people.
While they were naughty, they adored people and loved having company come over. Unsuspecting guests could always be counted on to share a snack. When we brought Sugar and Spice home, both dogs immediately adored the girls and guarded them attentively. Their love for the girls only grew once they discovered that these little creatures were eating and THROWING FOOD from the high chair.

Even though they were joined at the hip constantly, they couldn’t have been more different. Brigette did what she wanted, when she wanted. She loved winter and would follow EN around while he used the snow blower. She would bark and bark until the flying snow hit her. Dusty was my shadow and I tripped over her every day. She hated the cold and basked in warm sunlight. Brigette would leap off the deck into the yard and chase all the little creatures off “her” property. If Dusty went out alone, she ignored the other animals and walked peacefully among them.

In the summer of 2005, it became apparent that Brigette was having a hard time walking. We put a ramp on the deck stairs and often carried her upstairs to bed. Since Dusty suffered from severe separation anxiety, I thought it would be a great idea to bring in a new dog before Brigette passed away. Enter Indiana, Jack Russell Terrier. Once again, these old gals opened up their hearts and included him in the pack. I’m not sure what he gave to them, but Brigette got a new lease on life and lived for several more years.

Despite the fact that Brigette got deathly ill from her escapades, she never stopped getting into things. She celebrated her 15th birthday by climbing onto the kitchen table and eating all of the girls’ Easter candy. At that point, I thought “this is it, she can’t survive this.” A huge vet bill later, Brigette was back home and eating her home-cooked diet of boiled chicken and rice. Again, the vet expressed shock that Brigette had lived as long as she had and could still function as her hips were a disaster.

During that year, we saw a huge decline with both Brigette and Dusty. Brigette became incontinent and I was mopping the floor several times a day and washing her bedding daily. The day finally came that we realized that she needed to be put down. We took the girls to school and EN and I took her to the vet. I was armed with several packages of Reeses peanut butter cups, her favorite. Somehow she seemed to find strength between our house and the vets office. She gobbled up her candy and refused to lie down, even after the vet gave her the first “relaxation shot.” I can still see her sinking to the floor in slow motion. We patted her and rubbed her and told her we loved her as she passed peacefully. EN cuddled her and said, “You were a great dog, Pooh!” I stopped crying long enough to say, “Seriously?! Let’s not lie to her!”

Dusty never seemed at peace without her sister and lasted only six more months. Hers was a difficult decline to watch as well. My Velcro dog slept all the time and forgot to follow me around. I started to miss her even before she was gone. In September, we brought Dusty to the vet and the car ride had the opposite effect on her. When we got there, she could no longer walk and I had to help her through to the private office. She ate her Girl Scout cookies and curled up with her head on my lap. I’m certain she was gone before the vet gave her the shot. As I cradled her little face, a tear seemed to fall from her eye. We stayed with her for a very long time and on the drive home, EN asked if I too had seen the tear. I said I had but then told him we should probably never tell other people that, no one would believe our dog had cried a real tear. I will swear to my dying day that I saw my sweet old girl cry.

This left poor Indiana an “only dog.” EN tells everyone that I’m full of it, but I think he became depressed and was very lonely. What’s a doggie mama to do? Find a friend for our baby boy, of course. I found Bella Boo on Craigslist. Unlike the warm welcome the old girls gave Indy, he was quite pissed and radiated bad attitude for days. Now the two of them are best friends who fight, eat and play together. She’s as fat and fluffy as he is little and skinny.  
Indy and Bella snuggling.

Even though there are new dogs in my home, I still miss my old girls terribly. Both were cremated and I have their remains in the house. I’m not sure where to put them but I think I’ll need them with me forever. Sugar wanted to have funerals and bury their remains, but what if we ever left this house? I can’t leave my girls behind.

Spice was only two when we lost them and I asked her about Brigette and Dusty today, I wondered if she remembered them. She described them down to the length and color of their fur and said, “They were really sweet. I miss them.”

So do I. 

Ice Princess

Monday, January 24, 2011

Advice from a Five Year Old

I would say that the letter to Sugar was a success. She was up early and knocking on my bathroom door even before I got in the shower. She told me how much she loved my letter. As we waited forever at the bus stop for the bus that didn’t come, I shared the notebook idea with her and she loved it. I brought home a notebook tonight and she’s already written me a note.

I had high hopes that we would all have a good day. I picked Spice up, her first day back in a week, and she seemed to be in good spirits. We headed off to Sugar’s school and the look on her face told me that all was not well in her world. I asked her what was wrong and she said nothing was, until we got into the car. The car doors were barely closed when she started talking about another fight with her best friend. She talked all the way home, then parked herself at the counter to continue with her tale of woe while I was cooking. Spice sat next to her, listening attentively.

Apparently, Sugar’s BFFL has dumped her again, telling her that she’d rather be friends with other people. I asked Sugar why they had to only be friends with each other? What’s wrong with having lots of friends? Sugar said she didn’t see a problem with that, but her friend doesn’t like it. She only likes to be friends with one person at a time and during the time she’s decided she doesn’t want to be friends, the ones left behind are supposed to stand around and wait for her to return. If they play with anyone else, BFFL comes over and has a tantrum. I realize this is only one side of the story, but I’ve seen Sugar maintain friendships with lots of girls and not having any issues. I’m not real sure what’s going on here, so it’s hard to give advice.

It is also hard as a mom to not get involved. There’s a part of me that wants to email the other mother and ask, “What the fuck’s wrong with your kid?” However, I remember getting in many fights with my best friend through third and fourth grade, even to the point of throwing my Miss Piggy lunch box back and forth at each other until the handle broke off… I went crying home to my mother and she told me to fight my own battles. Mom was right in this case. When mothers get involved, they become very protective of their own. There may be an angry exchange of words between the parents that may never heal, while the third graders will go back to being best friends the next day. 

On the other hand, there’s really nothing keeping sisters out of the fray. Spice started throwing in her two cents about five minutes into the conversation, asking questions and telling Sugar the way it should be. She put her hand on her hip, swished her hair all about and said, “Well, you need to tell HER that you don’t want to be best friends with her anymore and that’s that.”

Sugar cried and cried and said that she doesn’t want to hurt her friend by saying those things to her which seemed to infuriate Spice further. “She hurt your feelings, who cares?”

It became more apparent than ever during this exchange why they have their nicknames. I only wish it were possible to give Sugar a little bit of Spice and vice versa. One will end up getting walked all over while the other one will be doing the walking.


Ice Princess 

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Love Letters

My mouth gets me into trouble sometimes when I say stupid things to friends, family, coworkers. I mentally beat myself for days over the comments that I just can’t take back. Tonight, Sugar got the brunt of it. I won’t try to excuse my behavior, I just suck sometimes. As I was putting her to bed I lectured her about all the things she does wrong. Really, why would I do that? I knew I was doing wrong, but I couldn’t stop the words from coming out of my mouth.

I didn’t call her stupid or lazy or anything abusive like that. I did rant at her about not using her time wisely in the morning when it’s time to get ready, nagging at me incessantly, whining, complaining, etc, etc. To listen to me tonight, you’d think that kid can’t do anything right.

I came downstairs feeling like total shit. What kid needs to hear that as she’s going to sleep in her room, her bed, her comfort zone? While I sat here thinking about how much I suck as a mother, I remembered one time when she was in first grade and we had a really rough morning. As a matter of fact, she was crying when she got on the bus. Seeing that puny little kid getting on the bus in tears devastated me. I was still upset when I got to work. I couldn’t call her to apologize, so I did the next best thing. I was on really good terms with her teacher, so I sent her a little note and attached a letter to the email for Sugar. I used a super-big font and little words, she was just learning to read after all. The letter just said that I was sorry for the bad morning and that I loved her and wished her a great day. I thought it was nice when the teacher emailed me back and said, “You are a great mom.” But I thought it was totally fantastic when I picked Sugar up and she told me how much she loved the note and NO ONE EVER gets a note on the TEACHER’S computer.

So that’s what I did tonight. I wrote Sugar a letter. I told her I felt bad about telling her about all the things she does wrong then I wrote a list of things that she does right. Some of the items mention her help around the house, others talk of the impact of her sunshiny personality on others. I taped it to her sock drawer so she’ll see it first thing in the morning.

I stink at apologies. My “I’m sorry” sounds fake to my ears and I don’t know why. Maybe it’s because my mother was never one to apologize either? I’ve always found it easier to write “I’m sorry.” I guess I feel like the person that is owed the apology can read my note over and over again if they choose to. I hope the power of the written word lasts longer than the meanness of my rant echoing in her mind.

Writing that letter tonight reminded me that I really wanted to start a journal with both my girls. Spice obviously is not old enough yet, but I think it’s time to do this with Sugar. I’ll get us a cool notebook and we can write back and forth to each other about our days, our dreams, our fears. She’s getting close to going through a lot of physical changes and I’m sure she’s going to have thoughts and questions that might embarrass her. Maybe it’ll be easier for her to write things to me? We’ll try it and see what happens.

Ice Princess

Friday, January 21, 2011

I Stand Corrected

Today’s blog post was beautifully written and ready to be posted by 1:00 pm this afternoon, but then the afternoon tumbled out of control and it no longer made sense to post something beautifully written about how good everyone was feeling. How do things just get out of control so quickly?

First, Spice woke up feeling better. Her sister convinced her to take a sip of water and she “drank water like GULP, GULP, GULP.” It was at that point that I thought all was well and that we would enjoy a snow day at home together. I got up around 8:30 after having been up multiple times through the night to check on Spice. A sick kid is exhausting on the mama.

I checked Spice’s tongue, hands and feet and she definitely seemed more hydrated. I asked if she had gone potty and she told me that she had peed. I thought we were all set. I made her sip at her purple Gatorade through the morning while EN went out and snow blowed the latest ridiculous deposit from Mother Nature.

It occurred to me that I hadn’t seen Spice use the bathroom again and I had yet to collect that blasted sample. I asked her if she had gone potty and she laughed uproariously and said, “Isn’t it funny, I’m not using the bathroom today.” Well, I knew she wasn’t going in her pants and I asked about her having gone earlier. “Um, well….” I asked Sugar who said that her sister had lied and hadn’t gone at all. At 1:30 today it became apparent that Spiced hadn’t gone since 7 pm yesterday. I immediately called the doctor’s office and waited anxiously for the nurse to call me back.

Lucky for me, I got the nurse from hell. I do believe she would have happily called the authorities about my Bad Mothering and given me an award for Bad Mother of the Year. She yelled at me for waiting so long to call. She yelled at me for not giving Spice more to drink. She yelled that I should have been giving her water with a syringe through the night.

Fucking seriously? I was up through the night trying to force Spice to drink. I dribbled water from her water bottle into her mouth a couple of times. I did everything but pinch her nose closed and force her mouth open. Please answer me this, when you got your Mothering Handbook, did it come with instructions on how to force water down your kids throat? Was there a syringe included in your Mothering Kit? Do you know that you are a Bad Mother if you don’t do these things?

I was horrified by what the nurse said to me. I paced the house waiting while waiting for her second phone call after she consulted with the doctor. She gave me very explicit and specific instructions on how to take care of my kid and “hydrate her properly.” I am stupid and incompetent after all. Her final instruction was that if here was no pee by 5:00 pm, I was to call back and probably bring Spice to the hospital.

So Spice and I sat here and drank. We had a chugging contest. I fed her Gatorade with a spoon. I held the cup to her lips and forced her to drink. Finally at 3:00 pm, she peed. It wasn’t a trickle and it wasn’t a torrent, but it was pee and I found myself not knowing whether to cry or applaud. It has been years since I gave a round of applause to someone for peeing in the potty.

So I find myself needing to apologize for an error I posted on Facebook today. I said, “I’ll never again say it’s possible to force water down a kids throat.” Apparently it is possible to do this. All the good mamas know how to… it’s just us shitty ones that don’t know to squirt a syringe full of water into a sick kids mouth.

I don’t know about you, but since I gave up my heroin habit, I find my syringe cabinet empty.

Ice Princess

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Sick Spice!

What a wonderful week it’s been for a first week back. First, Monday was a holiday. The rest of my family stayed home while I went to work. Tuesday was a snow day, Wednesday was delayed opening and today I had to leave early because Spice is still sick.

I’m lucky that my girls don’t get sick often. Between the two of them, they’ve had maybe three ear infections. Besides baby spit-up, Sugar has thrown up twice, Spice only once. They don’t even know what the “throw up feeling” is. They’ve had miscellaneous colds, fevers, etc, but it’s been years since Spice’s tangles with RSV or vaccine-induced measles.

We knew something was wrong when Spice declined birthday cake at a party on Sunday. She’d been having fun at the party so EN was surprised when she said no to the cake. He asked if she needed to go potty and she said no, so they drove home. Of course, halfway home she needs to go. The last several days have been weird. She’ll seem fine, then she’ll be screaming that her belly hurts. I will say nothing solid has come out of that kid since before Sunday.

Given our experience in the past with her “potty issues”, we knew they’d want DAYS of badness, or incidents numbering in the double digits PER DAY, so we waited before calling her doctor’s office. This morning, she screamed in agony while clutching her belly, it’s time to make the call.

We had a doctor’s appointment this afternoon and basically, they don’t have any idea what’s wrong with her. There doesn’t seem to be a blockage and she has no other symptoms that would point to anything obvious. She’s starting to show signs of dehydration, so we were sent home with instructions to buy Gatorade and to collect a sample. How much more fun can we have?

We stopped at the grocery store on the way home and bought yummy snacks that she said she wanted along with two bottles of Gatorade-purple and pink, of course. She’s eaten next to nothing and is refusing to drink. She says her arms are too tired to hold the cup, so I gave her more ice water in a water bottle and have been feeding it to her regularly. She couldn’t even finish the popsicle that she so desperately wanted. The worst part of all is that she’s lost her oomph and is mostly sitting around like a limp rag doll.

Meanwhile, Sugar is feeling like she’s not getting enough attention, so she paid a visit to the school nurse today and got out of school early. I knew she was faking it, I called her out on it and she confessed. I did thank her for being honest, but now find myself angry with her. There is no doubt that she gets enough attention, but it seems like she never gets enough. I don’t know what to do about it. There is a long history of Drama Queenliness in her father’s family and I don’t want her to end up like others I could mention: crying wolf when there’s none around. Despite the crafts, games, reading time, rides to school in lieu of the bus, I’m still not showing the love. I’m frustrated and not getting anything right with anyone.

On top of that, my nemesis at work today made a comment about how little I work. I was out for so long, now every day there is something keeping me out of the office. Nag, nag, whine, bitch… He’s always so quick to complain, but where’s the thank you when I sit here after hours, working on my laptop, helping him out?

I’m expecting a fun-filled day tomorrow. I have a stool sample I need to try to collect, then run to the lab with it within the specified time limit. We’re also expecting another storm, so it’s likely that Sugar will be home with us as well. We are supposed to attend a birthday party tomorrow evening for Spice’s boyfriend, but I worry that we won’t be able to make it. Further, Saturday is supposed to be Spice’s Build-A-Bear party with her friends. We may have to reschedule… what the hell, we have a history of doing that as she was sick for her first birthday party too!

It should be a Super Soupy Poopy Day. 

Ice Princess

Monday, January 17, 2011

Return to Work

Today was my first day back to work. I enjoyed the month off tremendously and wasn’t all too anxious to go back to the office. That was pretty apparent by how poorly I slept last night. I was up several times and stayed awake about an hour before the alarm was supposed to go off. Since it was a holiday for the entire rest of the world, I got up to a quiet house and was able to take my time getting ready. I even remembered to bring myself something to eat for breakfast and lunch. The 35 minute commute flew by and I got more and more anxious the closer I got to the office.

When I arrived at the office, I wasn’t surprised to see the Christmas tree still fully decorated, waiting to be taken down. I wondered how long it would be before someone nagged me to get it out of the lobby. My first order of business was to listen to voice mails and change my outgoing message, another something that they like to complain about. A few coworkers stopped by my office to welcome me back and my boss even called to wish me a great first day back.

At 10:30, my nemesis walked in and his first comment was, “You gonna start cleaning up the mess around here?” I replied with “What mess?” He laughed and said he was just kidding, but was he? Later in the day he stopped by my office and asked if I had graduated, I told him yes and he said, “Are you looking for a new job?” I answered that I was told to, so yes. He replied, “Good.” How’s that for a proper welcome back?

In between those two comments though, he laughed and joked with me. We talked about my time off and his vacation over Christmas, his 50th birthday, etc. He even said something about me getting a high-end job like his and maybe EN could stay home and be a house husband. All seemed well and I’m at a loss as to how to take his comments. I don’t even want to start analyzing the things he said, there’s no point. It’s more obvious than ever that he just wants me gone and will *jokingly* torment me until my final exit. I will forever wonder what it is that I did that scorned this man so terribly.

While I was at work, EN got to spend the day with his chicks. I’m sure (HA!) there was some plan or consideration given to a fun activity that they could do on this holiday without Mama, but Spice wasn’t feeling well so they all took a jammie day. I will say that other than the missing stuffed Chihuahua, the day seemed to be pretty drama free for them.

I spent some time tonight applying for a position at my school. I told the girls that I was going to do this after they went to bed and they said, “But Mama, you don’t have a school any more!” I said, “Oh yes, I’m an alumni… it will always be my school.”

Sounds pretty freakin’ fancy, doesn’t it? 

Ice Princess

Saturday, January 15, 2011


This was one of those days where there were several instances that made this old girl just sit back and say, “Seriously?!” Remember that old song called “Things That Make You Go Hmmm”? The song came out in the 80’s, so if you’re too young to remember it, there’s no need to remind me how old I am.

First, EN takes the girls ice skating this morning and as usual, my dad joined them at the rink to watch his granddaughters skate. He tells EN, “Did you know that you and Tiny Mike have a pass for dinner tomorrow so you can watch the football game together?” EN texts me this joyous news and I respond with “WTF?” I call forth the following examples: 
  • March 1993: Blizzard conditions and it is time for Family Dinner. We call my mother to say they are recommending people stay off the roads and she says, “Get your asses over here.” Off we go to enjoy a nice dinner only to get snowed in and have to pay a neighbor with a back loader to get us back in our driveway.

  • November 2006: EN and I fly back from attending EN’s father’s wedding in Alabama. Our flight is delayed, so we miss dinner but go to my mother’s anyway to pick up our sweet angels. I get the cold shoulder from my mother who says, “You missed dinner and I’ve already cleaned up, you are out of luck.”

  • July 2008: EN and I go for a weekend away with friends. They are driving so we have no control over departure time. We are late for dinner, but call my mother six hours in advance to let her know. According to Tiny Mike, she threw dinner at the rest of them and shouted, “I’m pissed off!” She didn't speak to me for two weeks after that.

Now her precious baby boys get a “get out of jail free card” to miss dinner to watch a football game? To the best of my knowledge, neither one of them are die-hard football fans. I will bet if I asked them to name more than five players they would be at a loss. Someone explain this to me. I certainly hope that someday when she needs her ass wiped, her sweet boys are up to the job because my sister and I will be busy somewhere else having Family Dinner.

In preparation for returning to work, I decided to get my nails redone so when EN left with the girls this morning I began the laborious task of removing my old set of acrylic nails so they could just give me a new set. It’s a pain in the ass and takes hours, but I get them mostly off. Every time I do this on my own I wonder why I do this to myself… then head off to get another set put on. The price of having beautiful nails, I guess. I went to a salon that I had gone to before and the people were rude today. I don’t get this. I find this in many salons, whether it’s a hair stylist, nail technician, esthetician… I go in as a customer, I’m nice to everyone and they treat me like shit. Really? Am I not paying you for a service? I deserve to be treated with the teeniest amount of respect while I sit in your damn chair. If you don’t like cutting hair, doing nails, giving an eyebrow wax, feel free to explore a new occupation. Until then, I am paying for your service, smile and be nice to me. It’s not too much to ask for.

As I sat there with the surly Nail Dude doing my nails a mother walked in with her ~15 year old daughter. First, the daughter has various piercings on her face. I thought one had to be 18 to get stuff like that? Next thing you know, kids will be tattooing the name of their 7th grade boyfriends on their necks. Wrong move. Is everyone allowed to just do whatever they want nowadays? If I had come home that young with a nose ring my dad would have ripped it out of my face.

Then there was the mother. Nothing annoys me more than seeing mothers of teenaged girls that try to dress like their daughters, obviously thinking her daughter is her friend and not her child. Um, no. You are the mother, not the friend. Raise your kid right and leave the low-rise jeans, bobby-pinned hair with pouf, slipper shoes and bedazzled phone to those born in more recent decades. This woman looked totally stupid and I sat there frozen in fear that she would bend over in her low –rise jeans and give me a full view of her ass.

But there’s good news too. All that made me a little cranky and EN was dancing around like Twinkletoes in a Tutu because he gets another day of football watching with his crew, so when I announced that I was taking a nap there was no back talk. 

I slept for nearly three hours and woke up feeling like a champ. The delicious tomato soup I made for dinner was the cherry on top of the sundae. 

Happy Saturday Peeps!

Ice Princess

Friday, January 14, 2011

Changes are Coming...

I am a creature of habit and I hate change. I do more than resist it, I flat out hide from it. I’ve held the same job for eight years, I’ve lived in the same house for nearly nine years. As a matter of fact, every piece of furniture is still in the exact same spot that we placed it when we moved in. All the dishes are in the same cabinets I put them in when we unpacked. The only thing that has changed is the colors of the walls, and those changes were made after endless stress and careful consideration. When the walls need to be repainted, I will likely do a new coat of the color they are currently painted.

I believe that I am like my mom’s mom. She lived in the same place for 40 years and never changed a darn thing. When she moved out, everything needed to be updated, even the electrical outlets! This behavior must have skipped a generation though, because my mother makes changes frequently: furniture placement, bedding, curtains, dishes…

The set of dishes I used for the last twenty years were actually wedding gifts from my first marriage. The pattern was Pfaltzgraff’s Tea Rose. I liked them just fine and I still have most of the place settings and accessories, but I have been hunting for quite a while (literally years) for something new, something that wasn’t connected to a marriage to someone else. I had been eyeing this set for quite a while and finally bit the bullet and bought place settings for eight, a salt and pepper shaker and a canister set. The packages started arriving today. Sugar and Spice are always thrilled when new items enter the household so they stood by while I unwrapped my loot. They are very pretty dishes and I’m satisfied with my purchases.

This purchase is symbolic of how I see my life going in the foreseeable future. I am changing behaviors by trying to eat healthier and work out at a gym. Skinny Bitch and I have hit the gym hard at least three times a week for the last two weeks. I go back to work on Monday, so that will be the end of our morning workout. I will miss her dreadfully. Time on the treadmill simply flies by when there’s a fun person at your side that you can tell anything to. I will need to start doing cardio in the evenings at home, and working out both weekend days. That is what my schedule will allow. I’m not the broad willing to get up at 4 am to pump iron. Every girl has her limits.

The prospect of going back to work and having to deal with my nemesis on a daily basis depresses me. Yet the thought of job hunting, interviewing and starting fresh somewhere makes me even sadder. There are lots of really great aspects about my job and I hate to kiss that all goodbye. 

However, I have done what I needed to do to start the job hunt. My resume is up-to-date and has been proofread by multiple people. In addition to the two jobs I applied for last week, I got all the required documents together to apply for the job with the Department of Corrections and emailed everything today. I did a quick search on Monster today and found another position that seems interesting, so I applied for that too. If no one calls me back on any of these resume submissions, I will be devastated. If they all call and want to interview me, I will be terrified.

Come September, there will be more changes in our household. Sugar will start attending middle school as a 5th grader. I want to protect her from that and keep her safe from the heartbreak that occurs in middle school. Spice will start public kindergarten and is already terribly excited. She’s familiar with at least one of the teachers, so she thinks she’s going to walk in and rule the school. I put nothing past that little firecracker.

The winds of change are here. Let’s hope they aren’t hurricane strength.

Ice Princess 

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Wardrobe Malfunction Averted!

On Tuesday morning Sugar was uncharacteristically mean to Spice about the outfit she had on. She was wearing a Henley-style shirt with a cami underneath, jeans and the ever-present tutu. She took one look at her and snapped, “You are supposed to button that shirt.” Spice was stunned by her sister’s tone, and her eyes filled with tears. I buttoned Spice up and told Sugar she should be a little nicer to her sister.

As Sugar gets home before we get Spice from preschool, I took a moment to remind her that she needs to be nicer and that making fun of clothing is never appropriate. Our conversation went something like this:

Me: Why were you mean about your sister’s outfit this morning?

Sugar: I was afraid her boobs were going to fall out of the shirt.

Me: Spice doesn’t have boobs. She’s five.

Sugar: Well, I mean her little nipples. I thought they were going to pop out.

Me: Sugar Pie, her little nipples would have had to jump out of her shirt to fall out!

Sugar laughed and agreed.

It’s interesting to me that it never occurred to Sugar to mention that a tutu doesn’t look right with jeans or that the colors of the shirt clashed with the tutu. She was simply saving her sister from a potential wardrobe malfunction.

Ice Princess 

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Dreamin' Big

Even though I said I wouldn’t, I have started looking at Monster, Hot Jobs and CareerBuilder during my time off. I really don’t want to hunt for a job while I’m on what could potentially be my last hurrah at this job. Any place I go to, I have to start all over again, accruing vacation and sick time, gaining seniority. Any way I look at it, that part sucks.

Until yesterday, the search as been somewhat dismal. There are plenty of jobs posted on a daily basis, but most aren’t anything I would be interested in. I do not want to go into sales and engineering is beyond my scope. I have sent out resumes in response to ads for a Benefits Analyst and for a Marketing Coordinator for a shoe manufacturer. That was last week and I’ve heard nothing back.

Last night I decided to check with the state website to see if there was anything interesting posted there. State jobs offer great benefits and growth potential, but the salaries are ridiculously low. I didn’t expect to find much and most of the jobs weren’t anything I would consider doing. Searching, searching… oh, what’s this? This would be a posting for an HR Coordinator for the Department of Corrections. For several reasons, this position got me excited and lit a fire in my belly. First, I have HR experience, so I meet the qualifications they are looking for. Second, Department of Corrections?! How cool would that be?

The Department of Corrections is particularly interesting to me because the Masters program that I have fantasized about, drooled over, purred like a kitten when I read the course descriptions, is for a degree in Justice Studies. I would love to find a career in this area as I find studies of criminal behavior and the criminal justice system enormously fascinating. The down side of course is that the pay sucks-even at the high end of the pay scale I would be looking at a 20% pay cut. I realize that the posting is for an HR Coordinator, having nothing to do with my interest in criminal behavior. I look past that specific job and see the potential for an intriguing career.

The application is filled out and my resume is ready. I need to get my transcript from school to complete the application packet. Of course the school is closed today due to the enormous quantity of snow that has been falling for the last 12 hours. Waiting to figure out how to get my transcript ASAP will kill me.

Meanwhile, I was texting with Skinny Bitch when it occurred to me that her husband, Fabulous Hair, works for the State. Different department, but he’s been there for years. Dare I ask for assistance? I sat with my phone in hand, wording and rewording a text to her. Is it “above and beyond” to ask a friend for help in cases like this? I bit the bullet and sent the text, also apologizing in the event that my questions were overstepping the boundaries of our friendship. I shouldn’t have worried. Skinny Bitch is a good friend. She said it wasn’t an imposition at all and texted Fabulous Hair immediately. I am not sure that I’ll get anywhere with this opportunity, but the potential has me dancing around the house on very, very happy feet. I'm also feeling a little fuzzy that I am starting to build up a network of nice friends, friends willing to do what they can to help a girl out. 

I can’t believe I found an opportunity that while not perfect, has me so excited. HR for Department of Corrections… I wonder if the employee tool kit includes a pair of handcuffs? 

Ice Princess

Monday, January 10, 2011

Beer Boy is Back to Work!

EN goes back to work today after we just spent three weeks together, not working. Since he works second shift and I work normal hours, this is the most time we’ve spent together. Ever. I’m happy to say it went well, we even forgot to fight about anything substantial.

I’m not going to lie and say it was all sunshine and roses. Once I decide something needs to be done, I steadily move along and get ‘er dun, like sorting through the girl’s rooms, etc. He, on the other hand, watches me run around, then pitches in at the last possible minute before I explode. He did this last week with a bunch of totes from the basement. We have piles of clothes that Sugar wore that needed to be handed down to Spice. Of course we forgot to go through these bins when Spice was actually a size 2T, 3T… Since the donation truck came last week, it was time to get rid of everything that wouldn’t fit. I spent Wednesday and Thursday going through the girl’s rooms and had piles of stuff to give away. When does he pitch in and decide to help? 8:00 pm on Thursday night. I came downstairs from putting the girls to bed and there are plastic totes strewn all over the kitchen. WTF? Ok, Jerky, lets remind ourselves: Thursday night is the ONLY night the Ice Princess watches TV. McSteamy is on and nothing comes between McSteamy and Princess O’Ice. You dragged all that shit up here, you take care of it. Talk to me while McSteamy is on the air and I’ll combust. Do not even breathe in my direction.

The other annoyance is his interest in my computer screen. Whether I’m blogging, reading Facebook, email or simply playing a game, his favorite place to stand is right behind me, so close that I can feel his breath and hear him chomping on his gum. The temptation to reach behind me and pinch whatever part I grabbed was so strong, I’m stunned that I was able to resist and all of his parts are still attached. God must have been smiling down on that boy.

Then there’s the iPad… I haven’t downloaded anything useful onto it, but I think I’ve come close to earning a black belt in Fruit Ninja. I have Sudoku and Word Search puzzles as well. Captain Helpful can’t be found when the girls need a bath, but he’s right there when I’m struggling with a Sudoku. He’s even kind enough to reach over me to poke a spot on the screen and say “That should be a 3.” He’ll then offer a charming smile and say, “Would you like to know how I knew that?” Yes, you are welcome to share your wonderful insights with me just as soon as you allow me to imbed this stylus in your left eyeball.

I have been very productive during my time off. I’ve gotten rid of loads of crap, finished school, Christmas, movies, birthday parties and dinner out with the girls, switched to online banking, joined a gym AND worked out multiple times, etc, etc. And what has boy wonder accomplished? Well, he drank beer. He bottled beer and he brewed more beer. His time management skills mean that right now, he’s running through my filthy kitchen (from brewing beer) like his ass is on fire, packing a lunch and apologizing for the mess he’s leaving behind.  Of course he had plenty of time to read over my shoulder to see what I was cackling about.

If we look at the big picture we see that I really have nothing to complain about. As long as he’s given direct orders, he’s generally a good helper and almost always a great dad and husband. But enough’s enough, get out of my house and go make beer and get paid for it. Let someone who is NOT married to you clean up after you. ;o)

Please note, I now have THREE followers as Snorting Girl joins the ranks. I have such hilarious nicknames for some of you… if you ever meet each other, shall I introduce you by your blog names or real names?

Ice Princess 

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Being Supportive

I sit here with lots of thoughts in my head, wanting to blog, but running the risk of being a total Blog Dork by posting twice in one day. In defense of my dorky self, I’d like to say that I started my last post on Saturday, but rambled on so long that it didn’t post until Sunday. So sue me. I’m a blogging dork.

I would now like to call your attention to the right-hand column of this blog. I have two followers now. Count ‘em… Two. Whole. Followers. Go me! This excites me tremendously. This blog has also been viewed over 1,000 times since I started it in October. It might be that the same two people have checked 500 times each to see if I’ve blogged again, but I don’t care. It put a little happy in my heart.

A million years ago, I got divorced after five years of marriage. We didn’t have any kids, so in retrospect, it was a pretty easy break up. If you had told me then that I would be saying this now, I would have laughed in your face. Divorce is very painful, it’s excruciating. It’s an obvious stamp of FAILURE that your family, friends and coworkers all bear witness to. It’s humiliating and devastating and what you go through haunts you for the rest of your life. An embittered, angry husband with one foot out the door says things to you that ring through your head forever. The angry dickhead impacts your life and colors every decision you make for all eternity.

And fifteen years later, the woman that was my rock during the most painful time of my life is handed the same deal. Her husband of over 18 years tells her on the eve of her 40th birthday that he no longer loves her and will be filing for divorce. The fact that he did this on a milestone birthday speaks volumes as to the type of person he is. However, it is not my job as her friend to repeatedly mention what a Class A Asshole I think her husband is… but if she were to say it herself, I might give a fist pump and an “Amen Sista!”

I am very, very sad for her, knowing how the initial news rocked her world and knowing that the worst is yet to come. The sleepless nights, the crying jags that come from nowhere, the hatred, the anger, the rage, the love and the good memories. I need to find a way to put aside my own painful memories and be there for her. I need to be empathetic and supportive, but at the same time, deliver a swift kick in the ass when she says no one will ever love her again. I need to remember that this is her process, her grief, now is not the time to compare what I went through all those years ago. She was there, she remembers, I know she does.

I need to be the friend she was fifteen years ago. I need to take her 2 am tear-filled phone calls. I will offer my shoulder and my love and only give advice when she asks me for it.

I need to be a rock. 

Ice Princess


It was my intention to write a “letter” to my friends in this blog on their birthdays. First, I missed Shannon’s on December 19th because I was busy with 4000 things. I did mention traveling to see her earlier in the month, so I think I’m due partial credit. Today I had something half-written in my head for my friend Bette in celebration of her birthday. First, she’s never said that she reads the blog so I’m not even sure that she’d see anything I say. Second, after hearing about the wonderfulness her husband came up with in celebration of her big day, I don’t have it in my heart to even write something. I just can’t go there right now. Instead of beating around the bush, the truth of what I’m feeling right now might come pouring out.

Do you have a BFFL? Do you know what a BFFL is? I’m not sure if this is a “real” term somewhere, or something that Sugar and three of her friends came up with at a sleepover here over the summer. BFFL stands for Best Friend For Life. I think there’s even a chant or secret handshake that goes along with being a BFFL. I know for certain that there is a BFFL Club that they talk about. It’s interesting for me to see friendships develop in my little girl’s lives and I wonder where those friendships will end up in the coming years.

Spice is just learning to be a friend. She’s in preschool and has several classmates that have been in the same daycare facility with her since she was an infant. Most of them are boys, but Payton and Spice have been together for years. They’ve played side by side as toddlers and now are interacting as “friends” do. I think they occasionally fight and the conversations they have crack me up. They’ve even started coordinating outfits and both wore the same boots to school earlier this week. Payton’s mother has recently become a Facebook friend, so we get to compare notes about what the girls are up to. Payton had a birthday party today and I was thrilled to attend and watch them interact with each other. To say that they adore one another is an understatement. They took occasional breaks to play with other kids, but they always seemed to know where the other was, and found their way back. Payton even went so far as to sit separately to blow out her birthday candles but then jumped up and said something like, “I’m coming back for ya!” She climbed back onto the seat next to Spice and they enjoyed their birthday cake together. They didn’t talk much while they ate, but the way they leaned into each other a bit, like an old married couple, spoke volumes about how they feel about one another. They will not attend school together as Payton lives in another town, but I would certainly like to try to keep Payton in Spice’s life for as long as they want to be with each other.

Sugar went to the same daycare for preschool and kindergarten, then moved on to public school for first grade. Sadly, she didn’t maintain friendships with any of her little buds from the private school. I think part of it had to do with her wearing an eye patch at the end of her time in kindergarten and feeling like the other kids were picking on her. Once she hit elementary school, she was the tiniest fish in a big pond and no one noticed or cared about her patch. She was thrilled to be a first grader and made many friends. She is still friendly with her first grade friends, but she didn’t bond with anyone until second grade. She now has a BFFL Club with a very small group of girls in her grade. I have met these girls and love them all. I would have chosen them for my own friends. They too coordinate outfits and play together, but now there’s an added dimension of DRAMA. One in particular seems to get mad at Sugar on a regular basis and it devastates Sugar every time. Sugar never knows what it is that she’s done wrong, but she comes home and cries and cries. She’s never angry at her friend, she’s simply mystified. It breaks my heart every time it happens. Sugar is always good and kind to her friends, she’s the little girl that will go without lunch if her friend forgets hers at home. She’s generous to a fault (with everyone except her sister!) and it seems that these battles occur when her friend decides to bring in a new friend, or leave Sugar behind altogether. Despite what men think, threesomes never work out. :o) Sugar and these girls will go off to middle school together next year and I hope they always have each other.

EN and I have no intention of leaving our small town, mostly because it’s important to us that our girls have roots. I am an Air Force brat, so we moved all the time. EN had a mother that liked to buy new houses, so he moved all the time. When we became parents, it was one of our dreams that we would live in the same place so our girls could grow up with a steady group of friends. Who knows what life will hand us, that may change overnight, but we’ve been here a long time and so far so good!

I compare the friendships of my daughters to the friendships that I have. I don’t have anyone that I really “grew up with.” I did meet Shannon as a ten-year-old, but I moved so far away at 15 that we were pen pals more than anything else. For most of our friendship, we’ve missed out on the day-to-day taking care of each other. Bette became my friend when I moved here at 15. We’ve taken two hiatuses from our friendship (divorce is too harsh a word today), but she’s someone that I enjoy having in my life.

The rest of my friends, well, I consider them “newbies.” They’ve all been in my life ten years or less (yes, I’m old). Each one of them means the world to me. Their successes and sorrows impact my life near as much as their own. They are each amazing women and they bring things to my life that I would miss if they left tomorrow. I’ve met these ladies through EN, my children, my work, schooling or people that we have in common. I keep in touch with them in a variety of ways… this blog, texting, email, Facebook, lunches, dates with our children. I don’t have a ton of friends, I can count them on both hands really, but I love them and look forward to seeing where our lives lead us.

Take a minute to think about your network of BFFL’s. When was the last time you thanked them for being in your life? When was the last time you thought about the magic of their friendship? 

Ice Princess

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

I Survived!!

I’m blogging early today because I still have the strength and energy to type. By the end of the day, I’m fairly certain that anything I accomplish will need to be done with a straw between my teeth. My arms and legs are going to be pretty useless.

Despite being a few minutes late, I did hit the gym with Skinny Bitch this morning. It’s been years since I stepped foot in a gym and I was pleasantly surprised by what I found. Planet Fitness is new to my town and they advertise being a “Judgment Free Zone.” I have to say that’s how it felt. The employees were very nice and there was no Barbie doll in spandex behind the counter. The memberships are a bargain at $10/month and it’s easy to cancel.

Since this facility is brand new, all the machines looked fantastic and the gym was very clean. I was shocked that people actually wipe down the machines when they are done. You know there are wives out there that would be stunned to see their husbands holding a bottle of disinfectant and paper towels. Everything smelled good and looked nice.

I did not work with a personal trainer today, but would like to get an appointment with one to make sure I’m doing the right stuff to meet my goals. Instead, we walked on the treadmill for 30+ minutes. Well, me for 30, Skinny Bitch for 30+ and at an incline to maximize her workout. Pretty fancy stuff. I’m always shocked to see people that have the coordination to walk on a treadmill and read or talk on the phone at the same time. Not me. I need to hang on for dear life. Any way you do it, it’s never cool to go flying off a treadmill. There is some new-fangled cardio equipment there that I’ve never seen before, so I’ll check that out another time.

We also did a few nautilus machines, a few leg ones, one for back fat, another for wiggly upper arms. But since we all know that I’m perfect and don’t suffer from any of these atrocities 35+ year old women face, I just did those machines to keep Skinny Bitch company. I am an excellent friend like that. 

Right now I’m feeling pretty pleased with myself. I had a mental list going into this extended time off and I’ve actually accomplished a few items. My schooling is done, the house is starting to feel less cluttered and I even made it to a gym. Even better, I liked the gym and the people there. I wasn’t the fattest or the skinniest, the prettiest or the ugliest, but I was comfortable there. Never once did I feel like people were watching and laughing. Maybe I’m just older and wiser now and stopped giving a shit about what others think.

I’m off to soak in the tub now and strategize my plans for the rest of the day. Plans may or may not include a long nap.

Ice Princess

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

The Annual

A few weeks ago I had an intense issue of a personal nature that required an immediate appointment with my gynecologist. I was even willing to step on the scale just to get some medicine. I waited in agony and the doctor came in and said, “It’s been a long time since you’ve had an annual exam. I’ll treat you today if you promise to make an appointment to get a Pap done.” At this point, I would have given him my car for help. We struck the deal, he diagnosed me, wrote a prescription and I was off. As I left I said, “The last time I saw you, you sent me to the hospital to have a baby.” He laughed and said, “This time I’m sending you off to book an appointment for a Pap.” I shrugged and said, “Win some, lose some.” Since he laughed at my joke, I booked the appointment.

Today was the big day. After a busy morning of prepping for the appointment (you ladies all know what I mean), I left for the office and was there 45 minutes early. I had the wrong appointment time. Thank goodness for excellent reading material and interesting texts from lady friends to keep my mind occupied.

While I love the doctors within the practice, some of the nurses leave much to be desired. This one was not my favorite. First mistake, stopping at the scale. After the humiliation of being weighed, she tells me to turn around so she can get my height. Couldn’t that bitch have been a little more compassionate to the fattie and had me face away from the scale during the weighing process? I mean really. I’m sure when she goes to her hair salon, they play 80’s music and talk about Jon Bon Jovi so she still thinks her poodle perm and mall bang are in style.

The only real complaints I have about time with the good doctor is that he didn’t buy me dinner first before poking my nether-regions and that room was damn cold. I was shivering before we even got started. At least he sat down and socialized for a bit before telling me to get in the saddle and putting my feet in the dumb stirrups. We discussed my endometriosis and he suggested birth control pills. I told him why I don’t like The Pill and he suggested a progesterone-based version. He said the mood swings would be non-existent and I wouldn’t get periods any more. Game on. Write the ‘script.

While the appointment wasn’t enjoyable by any stretch, I will say I appreciate being around people that find me amusing. I make him laugh, shake his head, roll his eyes… but never of course while he’s looking at my girl business. That would just be wrong and I might be offended.

And best of all, he has the kindness and compassion that his nurse lacks. Never once did he look at me and say, “Why you so fat?” That’s a good man right there.

If an annual wasn't a bad enough chore during vacation time, tomorrow is sure to rival that. I am joining the newest gym in town. Skinny Bitch is forcing me to be there at 8:45. Maybe if I'm nice to her she'll let us go out for doughnuts afterwards. 

Ice Princess 

Monday, January 3, 2011

Family Dinner

Before I start my blog post, I want to announce that I have a follower! Following is not the same as stalking, so I am very excited! It’s someone I know, and even better, it’s someone that I absolutely adore! I knew she read regularly, but having an official follower pleased me tremendously. YAY!

Yesterday we had Family Dinner. The trip down began much earlier than the normal 4:00 pm departure. EN wanted to go meet up with Tiny Mike (our brother-in-law) and his friends to watch the football game. I decided to take the girls to Walmart for some much needed household goods. One of my friends lives nearby, so she came shopping with us. There were only a few incidents involving begging for items that Sugar and Spice would DIE without. Plus my friend amused them by dancing in the aisles a few times. The girls love crazy people.

We got to my parents house an hour before we were expected, so I got extra credit for coming early to visit. My aunt is still in town for the holidays and there seems to be some discord between she and my mother. My mother tried to talk to me about it and all I got out of the furtive hissing and whispering was that Auntie may or may not have read my mother’s personal email. That behavior isn’t so surprising as she has a reputation for snooping, so I said, “thank God I didn’t email to see how the bitch was behaving!” Auntie is worth a post of her own so we won’t dwell too much on her behavior today.

The girls are quite pleased to go to their grandparents house as my mother has lots of treasures around for them to look at and play with. They were behaving well, but it was starting to become apparent that the big boys (EN and Tiny Mike) were going to behave badly. In a stroke of brilliance, they decided to each text my sister and me and ask if they could miss dinner. Hello, no, if you aren’t dead, you’re coming over to eat. My sister texted me to see if I had said it was ok for them to miss dinner, the boys were busted.

Tiny Mike was obviously in charge of transportation because they arrived on time. With beer in hand. They each had one while waiting for dinner and stood swaying while they chatted. At this point the house is filled with crazy people: kids running around screaming, my mother and aunt nagging at each other, my sister scowling at her husband, pure insanity.

It’s only fair to say that my mother loves her sons-in-law, the baby boys she never had. She delights in their misbehavior and is even happier when her daughters are annoyed with their husbands. It goes without saying then, that she was in her glory. I said something and EN laughed and shouted out, “What the fuck are you telling her?” He just dropped an f bomb at the feet of my mother. He got all flustered, Tiny Mike was laughing so hard I thought he would pee himself and Auntie got right in my face and said something like, “He talks like that to your mother?” Meanwhile my mother is doubled over laughing so hard I’m surprised she didn’t pass out from lack of oxygen.

We get the three middle kids situated in the kitchen with their dinners and the rest of us headed to the dining room. EN sat next to my mother and alternated between trying to charm her and talk to Tiny Mike about the fun time they had. Auntie clucked like a mad wet hen. My dad sat there shaking his head. My niece spoon-fed Spice because she’s not capable of feeding herself if Tia is around. Why do anything for yourself when someone’s willing to baby you? Dinner was louder than usual due to the buffoonery of the boys.

We tried to ask the boys what they had been up to and they both clammed up. I said, “Oh, I see how it is, bros before 'hos?!” My father was quite pleased with that line and asked me to repeat it a few times. The boys mentioned that one of their pals hadn’t yet arrived when they had to leave so I said, “Why don’t you go back then?” Tiny Mike started doing the happy dance in his chair, “You get to go back? Can I go back?” When my sister finally said yes, they bolted out the door so fast we had to yell at them to come say goodbye.

We stayed for another hour and I picked EN up on the way home. The rest of their night out seemed to have been just as much fun as it was before they came to dinner. Dinner ended up not being the stressful, tension- filled evening it could have been. Sometimes there’s an upside to boys behaving badly. 

Ice Princess

Saturday, January 1, 2011

What's Your Dream?

EN is a sports fan and stuck living with a bunch of girls who really don’t follow any sport (unless you consider figure skating a sport!). He particularly loves hockey and is a die hard fan for the local professional team. I should mention here that I love to give him grief that his team couldn’t skate their way out of a wet paper bag and when they win, I ask if the other team even showed. It’s all in good fun but my ribbing might get me in trouble if they ever make it to the Stanley Cup Finals. I’m not holding my breath though.

He plays hockey twice a week in the “old fat man league.” Both games are affiliated with two specific groups, no leagues, but most of the players are 40+ and some are a little heavier than others. Plus it makes me laugh to say it as they all see themselves as hockey superstars. Around Easter, the Friday night guys, who call themselves Last Call Hockey, paid to play at a local arena where our AHL team plays. As part of the package, they get to play for an hour, then stay to watch the AHL game afterwards. The arena plays music for them, runs the scoreboard and even tapes their game. They had a blast and wanted to do it again in 2011.

EN coordinates all this and set about finding a date. Their game has to tie in with the local team’s game times, so it’s not like there are unlimited times to choose from. For 2011, the only date left was December 31, 2010. Not even 2011! The guys took a vote and they all voted to skate on New Year’s Eve, then stay to watch the semi-pro game. So that’s where we went last night.

The girls and I took our seats right above the locker room entrance so we could see everyone come out. I’m sure not a single player realized he did this, nor would they admit to doing it, but every one of them that brought people to watch them skate stopped as they were coming out of the locker room and looked up to see if their fan club was watching. We were close enough that I could see their faces and I swear more than one looked a little emotional at the prospect of playing in an arena. Seeing those expressions made me catch my breath a little too.

One man in particular that I’ve seen before didn’t have anyone in the audience when the game started. He’s older, probably in his early 50’s, and has wild hair and a crazy mustache, a real tough looking dude. During the game, two guys came walking in, just as tough looking. They scanned the ice and shouted, “Hey Paul!” to get his attention. Paul looked up and saw his two friends and his smile lit up his face, his two pals looked just as joyful and proud. I’m not sure who they were to Paul, but they seemed excited to see their friend playing hockey in an arena. Through their game and for most of the AHL game that followed, the behavior of the players reminded me of a bunch of 10 year old boys who got to compete for a Little League Championship at a world famous ballpark. They were goofy, silly and excited. For an hour of their day, they got to be the stars on ice, their dream was a reality. Watching the guys made this old girl feel a little gooey inside.

The new year is a time for resolutions, many set goals to start on January first, but I’ve never been one to do that. I’ve never liked a resolution for five minutes, let alone an entire year. Maybe it should be more about what dream we will make to come true in the upcoming year… weight loss, an education, a new job, moving to a new home… The old chubbies of Last Call Hockey made one of their dreams come true so it’s my desire to do the same.

2010 was a big “dream come true” year for me as I worked hard through the year to earn my degree. As of December 24, I officially have my Bachelor’s Degree in Business Studies. What’s on the horizon for 2011 then? My dream is to displace about 50 pounds that haunt me and make me cringe when I see myself in a mirror. I’ve posted about this before, but was too busy to do anything about it. So I will say it now, by the time we are ringing in next year, I will be smaller. I see the outfit I want to wear in my head and I can see the size on the tag of the jeans I will be wearing. If I can earn a degree with a GPA thisclose to 3.9, there’s no reason I can’t get down to business and start working on decreasing the size of my fat ass.

I’ve told you, now you tell me… what’s your dream? Where will your ambitions guide you this calendar year? Feel free to comment, no one here knows who you are!

Peace and love to all of you… remember the words of a famous Fairy Godmother, “A Dream is a Wish your Heart Makes.” 

Ice Princess