31 March 2010

No Amount of Planning...

OK I realize it is only Wednesday, but it has been a week already. I mean, I am completely ready to call it quits on this one and start again on Monday. It's not that any one particular dramatic thing took place, but rather a series of small events combined with plans, obligations and a little help from Mother Nature that have led me to wish I could just get back into bed and stay there for the duration.

Here's a taste of what's been making me want to dive under the duvet:

  • Zoe was sent home from school on Monday at Noon because she was not feeling well and had a sore throat. This progressed into a fever by Monday night.
  • Monday night was the first night of Passover and Seder attendance was required along with cooking. I didn't have too much to prepare -- just macaroons, but it added another thing to do into an already busy and shortened work day.
  • No school for Zoe on Tuesday because she was still running a fever at 3AM when she woke up crying. (Which also = no sleep for Mom that night.)
  • It feels like up until this afternoon it has rained for 40 days and 40 nights.
  • Work meeting frustrations too long and ridiculous and uninteresting to expound upon.
  • Easter planning/family nonsense.
  • Issuing performance reviews to all my direct reports had to be completed this week
  • After a midday visit to the pediatrician it turns out Zoe's illness is most likely strep throat and she definitely can't go to school again tomorrow which will basically mean she has missed the entire week because, of course, school is closed Friday for Good Friday.
I shudder to think what new joys Thursday and Friday will bring.

28 March 2010

Reason #943 Why I Will Never Understand My Husband

I'm sorry because I know he hates when I blog about him, but I just can't help it today because I am so confused/annoyed/truly puzzled.

I like to bake and Rob likes to eat what I bake. I make a lot of cookies because they are popular among all household members and fun to make. I tend to store these cookies in Tupperware-type containers and I can always tell when Rob has had cookies (or brownies or my newest baked good -- granola bars) because the top to the Tupperware is only 95% closed. There is always, every time, without fail, that one corner he has not pushed down all the way. I complete the seal on the container whenever I notice it, but since Rob's favorite time to eat these baked goods is after everyone else is in bed, I often don't notice it until well into the next day. The part that really kills me is when he complains 2 days later that the cookies are stale already.

Why is it so hard to close the container all the way? Is there some way I can encourage him to close it more? (I have asked, nagged, begged about a thousand times now.) I just don't understand.

21 March 2010

Happy 8th Birthday Zoe!

This is a picture of me holding Zoe for the very first time. I am finding it very hard to believe that was 8 years ago!

19 March 2010

The Cosmetics Counter: Maybelline Great Lash Mascara

Last week Zoe brought home the gift of conjunctivitis, AKA pink eye. First she had it and a couple of days later Rob contracted it. I thought I had escaped, but no such luck. My eyes started to turn red this past Monday and I wasted no time getting to the walk-in so I could start my eye drops.

Of course there is no good time to get pink eye, but this timing was particularly awful since I had two important meetings to attend and by that I mean attend in person, not like my usual conference calls. The doctor at the walk-in clinic told me I had to throw away all my eye make-up and that I should avoid using make-up for a few days. Now anyone who knows my make-up buying habits knows that throwing away my eye make-up is no small hit in itself, but then being told not to use make-up was the killer since I had to be in a room with company bigwigs.

Normally I buy the more expensive stuff sold at Sephora or department stores, but it occurred to me I could buy some inexpensive make-up at CVS that I could more easily treat as single use. As I was scanning the cosmetics aisle looking for the minimum products I could buy and I came across Maybelline's Great Lash Mascara. Many make-up artists consider this to be the best mascara out there. I was never sold on it because frankly I can be a make-up snob, but I can't say for sure that I'd ever really tried it. Since I didn't know what else might be good, I bought it in Brownish Black.

I have to say I was incredibly surprised by this mascara. It really is good stuff. It goes on smoothly and easily without clumps. The color was exactly what I expected and it lasted all day. It certainly out-performed many other much more expensive mascaras I have owned and at $5.49 each I can afford every color.

09 March 2010

Life is Good

Lately it seems like I've been leading a life that is not mine because I've been having too much fun. Seriously. I was actually away for 2 weekends in a row!

2 weeks ago Rob and I spent the weekend in NYC. The weekend away including babysitting was a gift from my Mom for our 10th anniversary and my brother and sister-in-law put the icing on the cake with a gift certificate to our favorite steak place. Rob and I had a weekend like we haven't had since Zoe was born. We meandered around the city. We spent hours in the Barnes and Noble at Union Square. We lingered over dinner. We slept late. We window-shopped. We held hands a lot. It was just all romantic and perfect. We could use about 10 more weekends just like that.

I didn't think weekends away could get better until this past weekend with Emily and Becky in Philadelphia. Why Philadelphia, you ask? Well, thanks again to my Mom who gave me this trip as a birthday present. (Mom is on a roll with the excellent presents!) The idea was for me and a "guest of my choice" to go to the Barnes Foundation museum which is just outside Philly. I had never heard of the place, but it sounded like my cup of tea so I called my favorite tea-drinker (aka Becky) and asked her if she wanted to go. Then I immediately realized that we'd be in Emily's neck of the woods so we'd have to have her along too to make another girls' weekend out of it. Luckily it didn't take too much calendar examining to come up with a weekend that suited all three of us.

The Barnes Foundation is a pretty amazing place. It is filled with French Impressionist, Post-Impressionist, and early Modern paintings among other works of art including furniture, sculpture and pottery. Despite the rather stringent security measures (The White House should take notes from them!) the galleries are really wonderful to walk through and there were quite a few surprises including a beautiful Matisse I had never seen. And they even had a poster of that Matisse.

The museum was followed by lunch and then very excellent shopping in Rittenhouse Square area of Philadelphia. Then there was dinner at Parc, a French bistro. Lots of good girl talk, book shopping, new jeans, and some good food -- a recipe for perfection. I really didn't want the weekend to end. Thanks to both Emily and Becky for their excellent company.

And to top off all this goodness, like a cherry on my sundae when we were shopping on Saturday afternoon we made a stop in the Lucky Brand store. In the store there was a moment I will never forget. As some of you know I have been working quite hard to lose weight and get in shape over the last year. I've lost about 25 pounds and I am pretty fit, if I do say so myself. I don't think I was quite this thin on my wedding day and it feels really great, but I still think of myself as being, well, fat. While we were waiting our turn to try on jeans I was looking at a top and I asked the sales person if it came in black and she said to me, "Yes, what size do you need?" and she turned and looked at me, "a small, right?"

It might not sound like a big deal, but in my entire adult life I can't remember anyone ever asking me if I wore a size small. It felt soooooo good. (Especially because the small was the right size.)

Life is good even if it isn't all weekends away and shopping, but wouldn't it be nice if it were?

05 March 2010

TBR Challenge: Miss Match

I know it is surprising to see another TBR Challenge post so soon, but I had to do something I rarely ever do and that is abandon a book. Gasp!

The book in question is Miss Match by Erynn Mangum and was given to me as a gift. (To be fair, it was given to me by someone who doesn't know me at all.) I was quite surprised to discover that this book is so-called "Christian fiction." That was a new genre for me. I mean I am sure if I'd ever given it thought I would have realized that it had to exist, but I never have given it any thought.

In an attempt to be open-minded I read the first 50 something pages the other night, but I felt really uncomfortable about what I'd read. I wasn't sure why because I've read plenty of books about people of other religions. When I woke up the next morning I realized that what was making uncomfortable was that the "born again" aspects of the book (and there were quite a few for only 50 pages in) were a lot like preaching and not just part of the plot. I struggled with the decision, but ultimately decided the book must be abandoned because life is too short and there are too many other books out there.

04 March 2010

Am I a Big Girl Now?

I am finding it hard to believe, but Zoe's 8th birthday is coming up in just a few weeks. (Yes, that means I will be posting her baby picture again soon.) In some ways these have been the fastest 8 years of my life. I have no idea where so much time went because it feels like only yesterday that we brought little baby Zoe home from the hospital. At the same time, I can't remember or imagine my life without her in it. But I will save the rest of the "remember when" stuff for her actual birthday because that's not what I wanted to write about today.

Zoe is obsessed with being a big girl. When she got up on her own and got herself dressed without being told she asked me, "am I acting like a big girl?" She has opinions on what big girls wear, read, play with, etc. I've been encouraging her efforts, of course.

This morning, however, I had to correct one of her ideas about being a big girl. Just before leaving for the bus stop Zoe asked me, "When I turn 8, can I say f**k?"

I forced myself not to laugh and said, "No, that's a grown-up word. Not even big girls should say that word."

"But Asher says f**k," she replied. Asher is her 12 year-old cousin.

"He shouldn't," I replied.

"He shouldn't say it to grown-ups," Zoe answered. I couldn't argue with that one.

I re-iterated that it is not a word she should use, but that some people do it in frustration. I suggested she use "phooey" instead.

"Phooey is a baby word." She got me again.

So finally I told her, "life just doesn't make sense sometimes, does it?"