Monday, January 30, 2012

juggle juggle

It's a busy time around here.
But it's a good busy.

Since January 1st:

I have gotten 3 new jobs.
Yes!  3!
2 are project based and the other is about 8 hours a week.
I know, right?

The one at the publishing firm is coming to a close.
I have really enjoyed it and hope they ask me back on another project.
My other two are working with an afterschool drama program and helping out with the US Amateur Women's golf tournament that is coming to a country club my friend belongs to.
It really is all about who you know.
(Even though, 2 of these jobs I got on my very own, thankyouverymuch.)

Ellie has started a dance class that is only one day a week but seems to take up more time than that.
There is a recital in June.
She is desperate to do it.
I keep telling her it is 6 full months of dance before the show.
She is desperate to do it.
I mentioned a stage and she went wild with excitement.
We, of course, are doing it.

Chris has decided to have surgery on Wednesday.
His nose has been messed up since he was a kid.
(I will spare you the gory details of what happened. It could turn even the strongest stomach.)
After years of not being able to breathe through his nose, he is finally getting around to fixing it.
The recovery is kind rough.
Scratch that.
The recovery is really rough.
And he does not convalesce well.
Lord help us all.

Our social calendar has exploded.
This part is awesome.
We are busy busy busy with our friends.
And Ellie is busy busy busy with hers.
It's a good thing.

I have logged about 30 miles running.
This could be better.
I would love to hit 600 for the year.
This is attainable, right?

So I am doing a juggling act of sorts.
None of my jobs are extremely time consuming.
But there is a definite learning curve to figuring out how to get everything done.
I am having fun learning.

Happy Monday People.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

what i'm loving right now

I thought I would do a little random post on the little things I am loving right now.

It's probably the most exciting thing you are going to read all day, so get ready.
1.  Plain ol' wintergreen chapstick.  Addicted is a good word.

2. Rain gum.  Have you tried this?
Ellie and I fight over it.  You know, cause she's big stuff and gets gum now.

3.  Learning about all the countries.
My new job is updating a jr. encyclepedia of the countries.
It's fascinating.
Like, did you know Slovenia really has snipe?
I thought that snipe were just imaginary animals that you sent gullible people in the woods to find.
Also, did you know that there are more than 250 ethnic groups in Nigeria?
I'm telling you, it's good stuff.

4.  Watching Ellie in her new Hip Hop dance class.
Wow.  Just wow.
Girlfriend can bust a move.

5.  When Ellie takes over my phone to draw and then takes a picture of what she draws.
This is a "no texting while driving" picture.
I love how they just show up on my phone.

6. Yiruma on Pandora.
Love him.
So relaxing.

7.  The weather.
We are having a good winter so far.
Not too cold.  Not too snowy.
I probably just jinxed us.
Knock on wood.

8.  Dance Moms.
Do you watch this show?
Those people are crazy.

9.  Downloading books from the library to my ipad.
Best thing since sliced bread.
They are instantly there, and then 3 weeks later, they disappear. 
It's awesome.
Too bad I have been too busy to actually read anything.

10.  Sleeping well.
3 nights in a row now.
Whoo hoo!

Exciting stuff.
Now I am gonna get up and go get some stuff done before another country shows up in my inbox.

Sunday, January 22, 2012


I know that 40 years from now, I am going to look back on days like today and think...
"Gosh, did I kiss her enough?"
"Did I kiss him enough?"
"Did I appreciate how good it was?"
"Did I realize how happy we were?"
I hope I do.
We started with a leisurely breakfast.
The best kind in my opinion.

She wanted to be a kitten.
Who was I to argue?
Breakfast was nothing special.
French toast sticks from the freezer.
Turkey bacon.
 But with him sitting across from me,
it always feels special.
 Even when I get one of these for making him answer in depth my
question of the day.
I got THIS journal for Christmas.
I make him answer the questions with me.
He did not like today's.
We discussed.
Even Baby Polar Bear joined in.
Have you not met Baby Polar Bear?
He is Ellie's lovey.
He goes everywhere with us.
Baby Polar Bear, blog people.
Blog people, Baby Polar Bear.
Now you have been formally introduced.
Then we gave Atticus his dental treats.
Boyfriend LIVES for these things.
We also found a new rare creature.
Part kitten.
Part zebra.
Part monarch butterfly.
We like to call it the Kizefly.
They are very rare.
We were lucky to spot one.
Then we headed to the nature center.
This guy was all up in our business.
We also went to our first planetarium show.
Ellie loved it.
I forgot how much I had forgotten about the stars.
And how interesting they are.

Then we came home and I made the mistake of mentioning how perfect the snow was for snowman building.
So, of course, we built one.
(How did we ever live without Pinterest??)
She thought it was so funny.
Days like today.
So normal.
So extraordinary.

Remember them.
Remember them.
Remember them.

Friday, January 20, 2012

working girl

People, I got a job.
Ask and you shall recieve.

I actually found it on Craigslist of all places.

It is with a publishing firm downtown.

It is temporary.
For now.
I hope to wow them so they don't know how they will ever live without me.

It is project based with a serious deadline.
I am updating an encyclopedia of the countries.
Paying by the country.

They are letting me write.
Can you believe it?
Are they crazy?

It is in this gorgeous old building.
And we are all tucked away in a corner.
Lordy be, I could live there.

And they are letting me work school hours and as much as I want from home.
I would say I scored a good deal.
Even if it is temporary.

And next Tuesday I am meeting with a woman about another little part time gig.

I am a working girl.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

weekending phone shots

The weekend found us lazy.

On Friday after school I asked Ellie what she wanted to do.
She wanted go to the library, take her new books home, light a fire, and read.

I have trained her well.

 I was all curled up in my chair by the fire.
Kitty on lap.
Coffee beside me.
I look up, and all of a sudden there is a tiger!
 And a dolphin!
 Then, since Daddy had to work late, we had a little dinner and watched a movie in the basement.
It was a nice night with my girl.

Saturday found us having a sleepover with Izzy.
We went and watched her play floor hockey...
 and she did Ellie's hair.
Ellie was in heaven.
 We watched a movie, ordered pizza and girl talked.
Nearly 15 year olds are a wealth of information.
For real.
I look forward to Ellie being 15.  I think.

Then Ellie went to bed and I found out Iz had never seen Hope Floats.
That is just blashphemous, so we watched.
Harry Connik, Jr. knows how to wear a cowboy hat. 
That is all I am going to say about that.

Then the next morning,
Ken made me the worlds best cup of coffee.
Worlds best.
Must. Get. Nespresso. Machine.
And Paige made me a bagel sandwich.
It was like I was a queen.
I was spoiled.
 Then, on Sunday since Chris was busy playing host to his brother and his friend,
(who came up for the Ohio State/Michigan hockey game),
Ellie and I went shopping.
She had Target gift cards burning holes in her pockets.
She wandered around for what felt like days.
She was gonna get dress up shoes.
She was gonna get a dress.
She was gonna get a game.

Lord have mercy.
She kept saying things like:
"I wish this was only a dollar."
"I wish you would buy this for me."
"I wish I had a hundred dollars."

So do I sister friend.  So do I.

She finally settled on this Princess Piano Vanity thing.
She had desperately wanted it for Christmas,
and told Santa, after Santa had finished his shopping.
She spent every single penny of her gift cards on it.
And is pleased as punch with her purchase.
There has been much music making around these parts.

Monday found Chris hungover.
Bless his little beer drinking heart.
But he was a trooper and accompanied Ellie and I to the doctor.
She has cradle cap.
At 5 years old.
How is that even possible?
And she has a cold.
A good one.
A coughy cough cough cough cough one.

We lunched and napped and gamed and read.
Is anyone else addicted to Temple Run on the iphone?
I may or may not have thrown my phone to the other end of the couch after a long but not quite long enough run yesterday...damn monkey thingies...
 And then we headed off to celebrate little Darren.
He turned 2.

All in all...
It was a keeper of a weekend.

Friday, January 13, 2012


Since it look like that outside. 
Since Shannon told me to.
Since it sounded fun.

Current Indulgence:
Popcorn with salt and butter.  At least once a weekend.

Current Nail Color
None.  And they could use a little TLC...

Current Playlist:
 Christina Perri on Pandora

Current Read:
The Night Strangers.  It is scaring the bejeebies out of me.

Current Drink:
Vitamin Water.  Blood Orange.

Current Food:
Veggies and Brown rice.  Wish it was anything else.

Current Favorite Show:
 Walking Dead!

Current Wish List:
A pair of great boots.  I think I am the only girl in the whole wide world that doesn't have any.

Current Needs:
A job.  That fits into my schedule.  And is interesting.  Not asking for much...:)

Current  Triumphs:
Landing a job interview.  Looks promising...

Current Bane of my Existence:
Snow.  And exercise.  I wish I loved them both.  Sadly, I do not.

Current Celebrity Crush: 
Josh Jackson.  Forever and ever.  Dreamy.

Current Indulgence:
None.  Sad.
Current Blessing:
My Daddy is still feeling good.

Current Outfit:
 Northface fleecy pants.  Northface warm sweater.  Did you see my pic above?  And I am going to break my own rule and pick up Ellie in sweat pants. Swore I would never do it...

Current Excitement:
Seeing what the new year will bring.  It's gonna be a good one!

Current Mood:

Current Link:
 I am relatively new to Pinterest.  So that is a good one.  And I love THIS new blog I just found.

That killed 20 minutes. 
And it was fun.

Thursday, January 12, 2012


I am a breakfast eater.
For real.
It is easily my favorite meal of the day.
I take great pains in making sure I have a good breakfast every day.

Ellie is the same way.
Girlfriend can put away some breakfast food.
Her typical meal is oatmeal, turkey bacon or sausage, fruit and milk.

Some of my favorites include:

Scottish oatmeal and fruit (see above)
Under 200 calories and 7 grams of protein.
And don't knock the chewy adult vitamins.
I kept stealing Ellie's princess ones, so I finally bought my own.
They have everything a 30 something healthy woman needs...

4 slices turkey bacon, egg sandwich (1 slice whole wheat toast, 1 slice american cheese, 1 "fried" egg.
320 calories, 15+ grams of protein.

Kashi Honey Sunshine cereal (or equivalent) and fruit.
320 calories, 6ish grams of protein.

 2 scrambled eggs with veggies, turkey bacon, clems.
350 calories, 12 grams of protein.

Slimfast for busy mornings.
190 calories, 10 grams of protein.
I usually need a mid morning snack on these mornings.

And we usually have one good breakfast a weekend.
Pancakes or french toast, eggs, meat and fruit.
I decidedly, do not need a mid morning snack on these mornings, or lunch for that matter :)

I feel so much better after eating a good breakfast.
Gets the whole day on the right path.

It is also my very favorite meal to eat out.
We have lots of great breakfast restaurants around here and make sure to take advantage.
There is just something nice about drinking coffee in a cozy restaurant, waiting for a yummy breakfast headed your way.

When I was a little girl, I always had a hot breakfast.
Every single morning.
And my mom worked, so I now know what a pain in the butt that must have been for her.
I clearly remember sitting in my feety jammies, eating scrambled eggs and smokey links
and watching Picture Pages with Bill Cosby.
(Does anyone else remember Picture Pages?)
Even through high school she made me a good breakfast.
"Protein!" she would shout.
"You need protein!"
At the time, all I wanted was Froot Loops or Poptarts.
And was mad I had to eat eggs.
 But now?
Thank you mama.
Wish you were here so I could let you know how much I appreciate that now that I am a mama myself.

What is your favorite breakfast?
Anything I should add??

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

zoo antics

We are having unseasonably warm temps here in the frozen tundra.
We are taking advantage.

On Saturday we zoo'ed it.
We spent all day just goofing off.

We posed...

 We watched the gorillas...
 and the fish...

 and we made it ALLTHEWAYACROSS the big monkey bars.
 Girlfriend was pleased as punch.
 We cuddled...
 and got a workout...
 and pretended to be a sloth.
It was a great day.

As an aside, we also saw the elephants pee all up close and personal.
Have you ever seen an elephant pee?
Holy 10 gallons Batman!!
It is impressive.

Friday, January 6, 2012

what i know for sure - friday edition

What I know for sure:

Going to the gym sucks.  Feeling great when you leave, doesn't.

After Christmas mail isn't near as fun as pre-Christmas mail.

Buffalo chicken lunch meat, arugula, and a whole wheat tortilla makes a pretty tasty lunch.

Any day the sun is shining in January is a good day.

Atticus will eat anything we leave on the counters.  Oatmeal, oranges, corn bread.  He is the dog I never knew I never wanted.

Routines are good things around this house.  We need them.  It's good to be back in one.

Last minute date nights with your sexy husband are a good, good thing.

Ellie is convinced I am abusing her every morning when I brush her hair.

Finding new blogs to read is fun!

Downtown people are different than suburb people.

This face will forever make me smile.

And as a little twist for your Friday entertainment, here is

What I don't know for sure:

Whether or not I will ever get a pair of kickin' boots.

If I will ever sleep well again.

If I will ever get up the motivation to get through some piles of stuff that need gotten through.

Whether or not I am going to start watching any of the new mid season tv series starting.

Which book I am going to read next.

So there you have it.

Happy Friday my blog people.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

new and improved

This is going to be one of those posts I may or may not regret writing.
It is going to be honest.
And scary.
And real.

As I mentioned earlier, 2011 was not a great year.
All was going well and then Dad was diagnosed with terminal cancer.
The prognosis was not good.
We almost lost him in August.
It was not a good time.
I was in Indiana.
My family was here.
Ellie was about to start school.
I felt like I needed to be in 13 places at once.

However, now, he is good.
Hanging in there.
No real pain and able, for the most part, to fend for himself.

The plan before all the craziness started was for me to get a job when Ellie started school.
We had planned and budgeted for that.
And I was ready.

I was all geared up for the job search when Noonie got sick.
I had updated my resume, contacted a few people and such.
It all came to a screeching halt when he got really bad.

Herein lies my delimma.

I don't know whether I should stay available for him, even though, right now, I am hardly needed,
find a throw away job that can be easily discarded,
or just jump right in and hope for the best.

I am bored.
Boredom leads to laziness and apathy.
I love my family and the life I lead,
but I need something new.
Just for me.

Ideally, I would love to work from home.
As would every other stay at home mom on the planet.
Ideally, I would love to write.
I am lucky in that I "know people who know people."
Cause it's all about who you know, right?

I feel like the last half of 2011 was spent waiting.
I am sick to death of waiting.
All it did was make me lazy and sad.
I want to feel useful.
And productive.
And challenged.

So that is my word for 2012.


I am going to stop waiting.
I am going to jump right in and start living my life again.
I don't know why I have been so hesitant.
Fear perhaps?

I am going to be new and improved.

I am exercising.
With plans of another 13.1 and a warrior dash in my future.
Chris and I are doing the Warrior Dash together.
Sort of as a team building exercise.
I think some friends are going to join in on the fun.

I am going to get strong and build some muscle mass.

I am going to find something I like doing, pays a little money, and fits into my life.
At this point, though, hours are much more important that pay.
How fortunate am I that that is the case?

I am going to have more patience, be nicer, and do more good in the world.

It will happen.
Just you watch.

Feel free to encourage me along the way.
I am gonna need it at times, I reckon.


Ok.  I just re-read that and I sound a little spoiled and selfish. 
Cause I know how much worse it could be. 
 I know that a lot of people would love to have my problems. 
I know I have it good. 
But, man, this is how I feel right now. 

I am going to go and push publish now before I chicken out.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

the year according to ellie

 I thought it might be fun to see what Ellie remembered about 2011 as her favorites/least favorites.
without further ado,
I give you an interview with Ellie, age 5.5

1.  What was your best memoris of the year?

Having my very first sleepover.

2.  What was your least favorite memory of the year?

I couldn't pick one.

3.  Did you make any new friends?

Yes.  Natalie.

4.  When were you happiest?

When I first met Natalie.

5.  When were you maddest?

When you wouldn't let me wear that dress I wanted cause it's too little.

6.  What was your favorite thing to do?

Swimming, pony camp, and having friends over to play.

7.  What was your least favorite thing to do?

Get up early in the mornings.

8.  Did you try anything new?

Yes.  Grown up oatmeal and chili and roast.

9.  Did you ever misbehave?

Yes.  A couple of times.

10.  What are you most looking forward to in the new year?

Going to Disney World.
(She might be dissappointed here.)

11.  Do you have any New Year's Resolutions?

Yes.  Study dolphins and learn to ride my bike.

12.  What is your "one word" for the year?



There you have it.

I will be back soon with my plans for the new year.
I am still formulating them...

Sunday, January 1, 2012

goodbye 2011

Not my favorite year.
I am not sad to see it go.
However, we did have some great moments.

We got Atticus.  Attackacus.  Crazyboy.  Love in orange fur.

Chris turned 34.
We built a killer snowman.
We had our first sleepover. 
The Ellie's went crazy!
I turned 34. 
I went on my annual wine trip with the girls.
We had our first hike of the year.
It was warm enough to wear short sleeves.
Someone turned 5.
We planted our flowers.
Cinco de Mayo at Paiges.
Memorial Day in Indiana.
Our elephants came back and my girl and I played hookie to be there opening day.
Ellie learned to swim.
She was in Uncle Mark and Aunt Amber's wedding.
 We went home for the fair.
Chris and I celebrated 10 years in Mexico.
Pony Camp.
Ellie started Kindergarten.
She loves it!
She thinks winter break is entirely too long and she is ready to get back.
She made a new best girlfriend.
And we made some new friends in her parents.
Aren't new friends nice?
Ellie had her first school dance.
She was a dolphin trainer for Halloween.
Jeff and Megan's wedding.  My favorite night of the year.
So much fun.
Time with family for Thanksgiving.
We went home this year and I managed to not take a single photo.
Christmas with a 5 year old is just the best.
Every day was fun.
Wondering what Benjamin was going to do.
Anticipating presents.
Laboring over the List for Santa.
Making presents for our favorite people.
December was good.
So while 2011 wasn't my favoriteyearofalltime, it was still good.
Lots of good memories were made.

I will be back soon with my plan for 2012.
It's big.
I am in a rut and I am gonna bust free!