Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Positive reinforcement is the spice of life....

Last night, my husband deserved sex.

No, it wasn't his birthday or anything. That would be obligatory sex, which I loathe. I just don't agree with having sex because it's expected.

But I do believe it's best used as a reward for good behavior, especially when the behavior was just to be nice, and not to get sex.

What did he do that he was blessed with such a gift?

He moved out of the closet.

That's right...he gave up his half of the walk-in, so that I can spread my clothes out, organize them by sleeve length and then color, and see all my shoes instead of keeping them in a Rubbermaid tote. I also have plans to hang hooks for all my purses!

So yes, sex was an appropriate response when "thank you" just doesn't seem like quite enough. In fact, he may get it again tonight.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Otis Tit-Sling and other Christmas gift ideas that need rethinking

Last week, my sister mentioned how she really wanted a Pandora bracelet as a gift from her husband for Christmas.

Personally, I can't think of something more horrid.

It kills me when I look on Facebook, and all you see are people who post the most perfect pictures. Joyous family vacations to Disney World, and smiling faces around the Christmas tree in matching sweaters. Their status is always cheery, and they post passive-aggressive put-downs on any of your negative statements, trying to lead you to believe their lives are all roses.

Well, flowers need shit to bloom, so I call bullshit on their perfect lives.

What you don't have pictures of, are the things you REALLY remember, like how the cat chewed through one string of lights on your pre-lit tree, or how you told your husband that if he didn't get in atleast one picture with Mickey Mouse, he wouldn't get oral sex for a year.

These are the moments that need commemorating.

That's why I think Pandora bracelets, as well as any charm bracelets are stupid. Besides the day your kids are born, you get married and there is a graduation, what the hell would be a reason to buy a new charm? They don't sell charms for the real memories...

"This one is for the day we forgot to pick up Taylor from school, and he sat in the rain for 3 hours until we remembered."

"And this one is the time we had to take Gavin to the hospital because he had a rock stuck up his nose and we couldn't get it out."

"Oh!! See this charm that looks like a clump of dogshit? Thats the day after we got the carpets professionally cleaned and then the dog had rampant diarrhea all over the house."

I was also perusing the Victoria's Secret catalog and found that they sell a product called, "The racy, lacy sling."

It's basically a sling that you wear WITH a bra (because they aren't uncomfortable enough on their own, and you need something else digging in to your back fat) and it's supposed to hold your boobs up even higher.

This was obviously designed by a delusional man, who was thinking, "Ya know, if a bra doesn't do it on it's own, maybe we can create something to temporarily rig them up there."

Ladies, if a bra doesn't do it, a sling probably won't help either. Because what IS a bra, but a tit sling?

I am grateful sometimes that VS doesn't sell many of their products in larger sizes, because, to be fair, I forget that I am a "curvier" woman, and I don't really look like a VS model in person, so the lingerie would not look the same on me as it does on Rosie Huntington-Whitely. I have inconvenient bumps, also known as love handles. Men don't always consider this either, when buying lingerie for their wives, which usually results in bouts of tears, self-loathing and an entire pan of brownies to calm them down when what they bought in a size 2 doesn't fit you.

So, if you are going to buy your wife a nice present for the holidays, make sure and ask her several options of what she would like to have, and be sure she includes sizes!

Thursday, November 24, 2011

This year, I am grateful for elastic-waisted pants and that tunics are in style.

Today is the holiday that would be represent me, if I had to choose.

Not because I am thankful, but because we get to eat enough to feed a small impoverished nation and then nap with our pants undone.


Actually, I think that this year, I may be more thankful than any other year of my life, in spite of the fact it has been the most difficult year of my life. I am thankful that I live each day knowing the extent of my own strength. I am thankful that I know who my true friends are, and that I no longer have to waste my time and energy on the posers. I am thankful that I know what it is like to have my love tested, and know it is strong enough to overcome fear and insecurity. I am thankful for the happiness that those who are close to me have experienced this year, with marriages and births. I am thankful for my extended family, who have given me a place to lay my head when it is troubled, and feel safe and protected in my darkest hours. I am thankful that no matter the tests in relationships, that I have the opportunity to work through them.

I hope that you all have a great day today, and good eating!!!

Monday, November 21, 2011

Children are appreciated most when they are fully returnable...

No receipt required.

I became an aunt on my side of the family on 11/11/11 to a beautiful little peanut! I spent a lovely four days in the hospital with my sister, sleep at a minimum.

For me, too.

But that's okay, because I love my niece and because I will give her back to her mother when I go home, where my children are old enough to get up on their own AND even make me breakfast!

They are well-trained, but it took a good 13 years.

I had so much fun being my sisters labor Sherpa, that I decided to go visit my best friend and her adorable children. Meanwhile, it's been almost two weeks since I have even TALKED to my own children, and they don't seem to have noticed I am gone.

So where does this leave me?

On vacation.

Even though I am no where fun, no where warm and sunny, not sleeping in and surrounded by small children...it's not upstate NY and it's not my responsibility to do anything. I simply do it because I want to, rather than because I have to. It makes a huge difference. I feel happy and relaxed.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Friends and family make all the difference in life.

"Among those whom I like or admire, I can find no common denominator. But among those whom I love, I can: All of them make me laugh."
-W.H. Auden

Everyone goes through trauma in their lives, be it the loss of a loved one or an unexpected crisis. During these times, you don't know how you will ever see the sun again, since your world is filled with gloom.

Six months ago, my entire world literally crashed down on me. Not that it had been perfect before the incident, but like most people, I had though in the weeks before it happened that I was already at the limit for my stress level. When life kicks you in the gut, it's an overwhelming urge to give up. But even during those first dark days, I could laugh at the horror and irony of the timing and the situation. See, I thought I was already IN the difficult part, and I was literally one day away from what I thought would solve all my problems. The truth is, that when I look back at all the stress I had, it was meaningless compared to what I had to endure. And then I looked at my situation, and realized that the majority of the world was still worse off than me.

The first time I was able to laugh through my tears was a breakthrough and moment of self-actualization that I would be okay.

In our darkest moments, we find out quickly and harshly who is in our life for the right reasons. Not because they hope to gain something from you, but because they genuinely love you.
This is the most powerful thing.

I find myself financially strapped at times, and then still find ways to make ends meet. I have money for an emergency. But then I see a man outside Walmart, ringing a bell for the Salvation Army. He was dressed in shabby clothing, looking homeless himself, freezing in the cold to raise money for others who are like him, or worse off. I put the item I was going to buy back on the shelf. A candle, that cost $12. I took the money, and gave it to the man, but I also took him a warm cup of coffee.

We always want more for ourselves. But maybe if we gave a little more of what we do have, it will brighten someones day.

And sometimes the grateful smile of a stranger is all it takes to give you the warm feeling inside that can undo some of life's wrongs.

Friday, November 4, 2011

There are two types of people in this world...

Okay, perhaps we are more complex than just two types...

But there are people who have immediate reactions, and make choices based on limited info, and there are those to take time to think things through before reacting.

I am an info gatherer. I don't like to be wrong, so I like to be pretty sure about my choices before I really screw something up.

Once you do something, you can't undo it. There are no do-overs and often, no guarantees. So we all just do our best to keep our heads above water in life and not be drowned by whatever waves crash over us.

Still, you have tough decisions to make. Not just that affect your life, but those around you. What do you do when you have a tough choice to make? Poll your friends? Get a consensus? Go with your gut?

These are all good, but sometimes you have to make a choice and you aren't sure you can't second-guess it. Because no one likes paying the penalties for a misplay.

But at the end of the day, we are just trying to get through life on an uneven playing field, and you have to make the choices that you can live with. There will be casualties along the way, and hopefully they are minimal, but I believe if you go with your gut 99% of the time, your odds are better of making your life what it is meant to be.

Having relationships is not easy. You have some hard moments to deal with. But be true to your values and your integrity. You may piss some people off, but if they are worth the sleep you lose over them, they will understand you didn't have an easy choice to make, and respect your strength for doing it.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Change is never easy, but it is possible.

If I've learned anything in my 32 years, it's that like is not static.

There will be good cycles and bad. Sometime they are rolled together. When they suck, it's easy to only be overwhelmed by the negative forces at play. And they are powerful, sucking the life and soul out of you.

I'm the kind of person who doesn't wish bad upon anyone, because I know we all have enough that comes our way uncoerced. But I do believe in being an honest person. It's not easy to tell someone bad news, because you risk them being in such denial and the inability to cope makes you automatically defensive.

I've learned a lot lately, that to be yourself and take a stand on what you believe in takes courage that most people find hard to do. They are afraid of what they don't know, and are afraid of taking heat for it. But if we continue to sit back and watch things unravel for others, and don't step in, whether it's out business or not, then we all fall victim to apathy.

"it's not my problem". "one person can't change things."

Instead of the extremist political groups doing good, they fail to realize that without moderation and mediation, there is no way for either side to win. The more you divide yourself, the less you accomplish.

No one wants to talk politics. It's taboo. Don't want to get in a debate over issues.

Well, how do you expect to solve problems, then? Be able to sit down with someone you disagree with and let's start talking...not about what view is right or wrong, but how we can meet in the middle.

If you saw someone being physically hurt in a domestic dispute, would you step in?

Why is the future of our country any different? If you believe nothing will change, how can you make a conscious effort to have children, born in to a country with such chaos and dissension? These issues will be dropped in to your lap.

Let's start seeing political official sit down in roundtable discussion with members of all parties instead of debating each other with the same canned promises and taglines. Let's have them talk to us, see how we feel, and start acting as a united nation, held together by more than a constitution. Let's demand real answers. Let's forget Occupy Wall Street and Tea party, and come back to the stance that rich or poor, democratic or republican, we are damn mad about the way that big business dictates policy in our country.

This is the time to stand up and say, I am mad as hell at our whole governmental system, and I am not going to take it anymore.

And let's try one more thing, yet unexplored in politics....honesty.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

My new profession? Web MD

I swear, I have been sick for a month. It's getting to be annoying as hell.

After consulting various Internet sites, I am diagnosing myself with Mono. Why don't I just go to the DR? Because it's a long drive and I already have daily Med board appointments with my husband, so the last thing I feel like doing is going to another one. Especially if it's Mono, since they cant treat it since it's a virus.

It's bullshit.

I find myself with small bursts of energy and then ready to collapse. I was ready to sleep at 6pm tonight, and now that's it's midnight, I am wide awake.

I need more friends on the west coast, so that I can call them when everyone else is sleeping.

I watched a show on MSNBC about 2012 theories last night. While I think most people are insane, I can't shake the feeling that I should be building an underground bunker, just in case. But with a pricetag of $10k per person, the sad fact is that if the shit hits the fan, us non-millionaires will bite it.

Just a random, midnight thought. I guess it's not the beat time to blog!

I am so ready to move back to PA next year. It will be wonderful to have good friends and family closeby, especially with all the babies sprouting up like cabbage patch kids. So many people still adding to their families or just starting them in their 30s, while mine become teenagers. It's an epidemic. And pregnant people like to recruit you to their cause.

I find babies cute, but I like sleep more. I served my time dealing with a good 6 years of no sleep, and am not anxious to relive those days. Motherhood is hard. Now the bullets I have to dodge are teenage pregnancy and drugs. I do laugh, though, when the first time mothers tell me they are using cloth diapers, going to try labor with no epidural and do it on their own. Some things just can't be explained. You have to live and learn. I learn something new about my kids every day...somethings that I dont want to know! But glad they will talk to me.

It's going to be an interesting year ahead...full of rebirth and new starts.