Thursday, February 25, 2010

I Could Be Simon's Replacement!

I've mentioned before that I wear hearing aids, which do a good job at boosting the volume of most sounds, but not such a good job at delivering sounds that can be perceived as completely natural. I find that a lot of things sound 'too hard' compared to how I believe the rest of the world hears them. In addition to that problem, when the hearing aids are not fitting quite well, there is an issue with feedback, which results in a high pitch squealing assault on my ear drums.

I've managed to complicate my hearing problems further by smashing one of my hearings aids into about 20 pieces when I knocked over a can of mousse that landed squarely on it. I'm now using an old, ill fitted back-up, which does not match the other ear, so things are more 'off' than usual.

There is a possible world where I wouldn't even notice the difference in my life if it weren't for my almost embarrassing compulsion to watch American Idol. During the main auditions, the squealing was off the hook. I'm not just talking about the singers. The feedback in my ears sometimes carried on through the commercial break. And now that the top 24 are performing and the music quality is supposed to be improving, I'm hearing exactly the opposite.

Based on what the judges are saying about the contestants, they seem hearing the same thing that I'm hearing. Normally this doesn't happen for me. Very often, I'm prone to liking what the judges hate. This season, we seem to be on the same page.

By taking messed up hearing, and applying a messed up solution to it, I'm wondering now if I've managed to find the formula to be a bang-on music critic.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Not That I Do This But...

If you stalk someone on Facebook regularly, it is wise to ensure that you enter his or her name in the search field, and not in your status update field. Having a status update with just the name of your 'stalkee' could be a tad embarrassing.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Waking Up on the Right Side of the Bed

When his son was four or five, my former colleague used to wake himself up at 4:45 every morning such that he could be alert and ready for his son's energy by the time the boy got up every morning. "You're fucking crazy!" was all I could say at the time from my childless, single, sleep-until-11-on-the-week-ends frame of mind.

Now that I have kids of my own, I still think he was off his rocker, but I have at least had a glimpse into his way of thinking as of this week.

Pumpkin's school bus schedule was changed such that her pick-up time is now 13 minutes earlier than before. This doesn't sound like much, but since I was already cutting it short for time prior to this change, I decided to do something that I hadn't done since I became a stay at home mom. I set my alarm for an early wake up.

After I got myself all spiffed up for the day, I headed over to Pumpkin's room to wake her up. This was a nice change. Usually she wakes me up by slamming herself on my bed while screaming "MOMMY!" Truthfully, being woken up this way always puts me in a foul mood, coupled with resentment, and strong desire to lock Pumpkin in a broom closet. By being the one to wake her up, it was like I had the upper hand! She couldn't get to me the way she usually does. Right up until the time she shuffled onto the bus, I was uncharacteristically calm and not aggravated.

I started thinking of my former colleague, and how his extreme early wake up probably gave him time to have a coffee and read the paper in peace, and actually started to consider it. Imagine how calm I could be if I used that opportunity! Then I quickly calculated that he set his alarm a whole two hours earlier than I had just done, and I went back to questioning his sanity.

Knowing myself quite well, not only will I never wake myself up more than 20 minutes ahead of Pumpkin, I'll probably continue to let her wake me up on non-school days, forcing us both to endure my morning grumpies.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Creature of Bad Habits

I have a basket on my kitchen counter that I use to throw recyclables into, which I then dump into the main recycling bin whenever the basket gets too full. In theory. Sometimes I keep piling stuff into it, or onto it rather, when the basket is clearly overflowing with papers and containers.

Just to the left of the basket on my counter, I store important items that I need to file, shred, sign, or do something with. As you can imagine, sometimes the overflow from the recycling basket and the 'important items' pile occasionally merge to form one large mess.

Last month, this pre-filing system of mine allowed me to throw out a pack of gift cards. Just yesterday, I realized that I must have thrown out a stack of photographs. Despite my two examples of stupidity above, I seem to be continuing to file important items right next to the recycling.

I guess I'm holding out on change so I can throw out my income tax forms or maybe a winning lottery ticket.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Please Allow Me to Judge Me on Your Behalf

The last time I posted about Pumpkin's ski lessons, I discussed how Pumpkin suddenly 'got it', and was skiing like a pro. Well, not quite like a pro, but doing it willingly, and somewhat properly. Well, things haven't exactly progressed the way that I would have liked.

Pumpkin does not look forward to ski day. I never let her back out of it, but she does often complain about various physical ailments every Saturday morning when she wakes me up with her infamous line, "What my doing today?!!" Yesterday's complaint involved a frog in her tummy. And so the bribery began.

Yesterday, I promised lunch at McDonalds just for going, plus a few chocolate eggs if she managed at least six runs. In addition, it has always been a given that I would buy her jelly beans from the vending machine at the ski lodge at the end of every lesson.

Pumpkin held up to her end of the bargain, so I grabbed her the jelly beans for her to munch in the change room, which is complete chaos if you want to imagine a small room filled with about 20 young kids plus their parents, all trying to undress and dress again in winter gear. Many of the kids were crying by this point, while their parents endured the stress of getting everything organized and packed up.

Other kids saw me pumping my kid full of junk while discussing McDonald's with her, and started to nag their own parents. One father went as far as to mention to me how healthily his family eats, and how his kids don't ever get McDonald's. One mother found herself helplessly giving in to her daughter's candy demands in the face of Pumpkin's good sugar fortune. I overheard some other parent say something like, "NO! We're going home for lunch!" There was even a note on Pumpkin's progress card from last week's substitute instructor saying, 'NO TREATS!' What's wrong with a tiny piece of chocolate at the end of a good run?

Sorry to the other parents, but my crappy parenting skills are what we need to get through this seven week session. Look for me on the hill though if you need me to hook you up with something sweet.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

False Advertising

I bought a cookbook with the most appealing title: 30 Minute Suppers. Today I made my third meal from that particular book. It took me an hour to put together. The last one also took an hour, while the one before that took an hour and a half!

Apparently I need a sous chef.

A Logical Deduction

I have recently been marveling over how my pig-dog, Taz, hasn't stolen any food off of the counter tops lately. The stealing had been an ongoing problem with him that forced us to elevate all food products, including the compost bin, to heights over five feet. We occasionally, absentmindedly have put down our food at a lower height in order to assist a child with something, only to come back to an empty plate, leaving us wondering if we actually ate the food and just didn't remember. This sort of thing seemed to have stopped recently, and I attributed it to our training efforts.

A couple of weeks ago, we had Taz at the vet's to discuss how there seemed to be a lot of strain on his back legs. The vet found nothing wrong, but suggested glucosamine for arthritis. We gave it a whirl. Since then, we have managed to lose a plate of chicken nuggets, several bowls of cereal, at least one waffle, and a pot of rice.

It would seem that glucosamine causes dogs to disregard prior training, and cause them to gain weight. How's that for a scientific study?

Saturday, February 06, 2010

We Sure Know How To Whoop It Up!

Tonight was date night, although it's sad that I say this in the past tense seeing as it is only ten past nine. My mom came over to babysit for a couple of hours, and we opted to go out for dinner instead of having our usual movie night. We made our reservation fairly late in the day, and ended up with a six o'clock seating, which was ok as we are getting used to the early bird special.

Dinner was all that and a bag of chips, but it was finished by 7:30. Going home was a bad idea since the kids were still up, and there was no point in even having a night out if we still had to participate in their bedtime routine. We decided that we had to find a way to amuse ourselves further, without having to ingest any food as we were already stuffed. Drinks were out too since hubby had to drive. Ah, the 'burbs. Anyhow, we decided on the local book store, which was open late enough to meet our need to peruse for a while.

Unfortunately, the book store shares a parking lot with a movie theater, and there was no parking. Hubby would rather stick needles in his eyes than drive around looking for a spot, so he declared our date over, and started driving home. On the way, we passed our usual grocery store, which was open! "Stop the car!", I insisted.

So there we were on a Saturday night, dressed up and looking pretty, me buzzing from the wine we just drank, loading up our cart with diapers, and Alphagetti.

Wednesday, February 03, 2010

And She Doesn't Even Live in a Bubble!

I got a call from the school this week on a day that Pumpkin was not in attendance. A slight panic took over my thoughts as I saw the school name on call display, for it struck me as a prelude to a meeting with the teacher, which isn't usually a good thing.

Au contraire, the call was not about anything negative. In fact, it was exactly the opposite. Every month, the school focuses on a particular, desirable character trait, and awards a student from each class who best demonstrates this trait. So guess who is getting an award on Friday for her continual display of exemplary 'optimism'?

That's right! My little girl is out there spreading her positive energy, irrespective of the house of sarcastic apathy from which she derives! Irrespective of my failed efforts to contain her spirit, which is sometimes a little extreme for me to handle. Irrespective of any rules or punishments that have been imposed upon her which undoubtedly, to her, seem like grossest injustices imaginable. So I take this moment of parental pride to brag a little. My ever lovin' first born is happy!

I'd write a parenting manual on the topic, but it would have to be titled, Winging It, and involve a lot of internet surfing, and store bought chicken nuggets.

Tuesday, February 02, 2010

Check Back Tomorrow. Please?

Sorry for being such a slacker this week. I do have a real post brewing in my head right now but I failed to turn it into anything publishable last night, and I'm about to embark on a two hour season premier of LOST, which may render me exhausted after eight months of anticipation. Don't wait up.

Monday, February 01, 2010

I Keep It in My Back Pocket!

My mom: Pumpkin, if you don't do as I tell you, I'm going to lose my temper!!!

Pumpkin: Don't worry Grandma! You can have mine!