Wednesday, December 30, 2009

The One Where She Always Quotes Titles From Friends

I tend to think in "ought tos." You know...I ought to call Grandma, or I ought to do that laundry. I ought to catch up with my friend and see if they're getting sent to Ten Buck Two for her husband's new job.

I ought to go on the Innernet.

Things started falling apart around Halloween. From what I understand, we had a few little kinks in our daily system. It started with my husband "redecorating" our house for the holiday, then went on to us bringing in a new dog. The dog got sick and was bitten by a rattlesnake. It turned out he had Distemper and eventually died.

And then we had my bit 3-0 and a trip to Disneyland...and then....the holidays.

And here we are.

There are many things I'd like for the new year. I'd like to get back on track with our house and the clutter. I'd like to figure out what the heck I'm doing with homeschooling. I'd like to make meals that don't involve tortillas.

I hate that when I finally do get my breath to get back on track coincides with the New Year. Probably because I hate New Years.  Feels like such a cliche.

But...then again...with New Years come more Rubbermaid containers in the maybe being a cliche isn't a bad thing.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Fashion Forward

A long time ago (just shy of three years) in a far away land (Texas), lived a woman who enjoyed wearing pajama pants (Care Bears. Blue. With Stars) out in public. (That's me!) She insisted on being "comfy" at all times, even if it meant looking like she deserved to be on

Then, one day, said lady went to the grocery store with her two very small children. There she ran into a girl she knew from high school. Not just any girl...but one of the cheerleaders.

Said cheerleader was dressed appropriate for the store. The PJ Lady was not. Cheerleader took one look at the two snotty children, the PJ-clad mama with wet hair, faked a half smile and ran.

It was a glorious stomping to my self-esteem, yet it didn't make me try to dress any better. Why? I don't know...perhaps I reveled in the fact that I looked like a Hobo, which may be totally politically incorrect to say, but true. Except most Hobos would probably take offense at my wearing the blue Care Bear PJs and relating myself to them.

Don't believe me? Here's one of my "fancier" outfits from the time. Note the "born to camp" shirt." Classy.

Exhibit A:

Post baby fun

Then, one day, I realized that maybe people want to make friends with gals who get up, get showered and then get dressed! I started slowly. The whole shower thing in the morning was a total buzz kill, so I started waking up, putting on workout clothes and then taking my children to preschool.

Yes, I'd pretend to go work out. Then I'd go home and take a shower. No PJs in public! Yay me.

I've been taking baby steps over the past three or so years. I went from the Care Bears and fuzzy slippers to the gray "yoga pants," then the workout clothes. Eventually I managed to put on jeans! In public! Before bedtime!

Now I am proud to say that I can wake up in the morning and get dressed...all before 8AM. I'm making a concentrated effort to really try to look decent. The area I live in is considered a "small town" and you do run into a lot of the same people on a daily basis. That means no PJs out in public, no yoga pants, no fuzzy slippers or anything with a cartoon character on them!

I want these people to have me as their friend, no consider me as the possible babysitter.

And, well, it is working. I'm feeling good about myself. I ENJOY getting dressed in the mornings and I'm even enjoying taking part in The Working Closet's 30 days of fashion flickr pool.

The best part? I enjoy the fact that the majority of my clothes come from thrift stores! I enjoy finding clothes that fit me for a fraction of the cost.

Exhibit B:

November 5

Now, if only I could go back and time and tell myself to lay off those Oreos...I'd be set.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

How to Go Crazy; A Photo Tutorial

How to have dirty floors: a picture tutorial.

First: Have your husband get laid off. Get him another job in a different state. Have two weeks to get there.

Second: Make sure your husband is very annoyed with your older house that you're selling. He's super tired of repairs and fixing things last minute so that you can get your money back. Make him insist on new McHouse with view of mountains.

Third: Find him a nice McHouse with view of mountains. Make sure McHouse includes cream colored tile and carpet.
Tis Beautiful...But it doesn't feel like home

Fourth: Make sure the state you move to is Arizona. Arizona lacks grass and has an abundance of dirt and sand. If your children are like normal children, they will like to go barefoot or wear sandals. That insures the dirt will NEVER come off their feet.


Fifth: Add in a dog. A large puppy. Make sure puppy gets bit by rattlesnake and has a big huge festering wound. Bring him outside with you, complete with festering wound, because you're worried he'll go and pee on that light colored carpet.

(Crotch licking is optional.)

Add all together. Bring inside house. Have heart attack on daily basis. If you're feeling really lucky? Hand the kids Halloween candy and let them drop wrappers on the floor as they watch Spongebob in a candy-induced haze. 

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Betty Throws a Party, Forgets the Cupcakes

I think most adults, when it comes to food, has something they are known for. My husband's aunt, for example, makes a mean Jell-O that involves pie filling. Seriously, you'll eat it and wonder how you went so long without bathing yourself in its Jell-O-ey goodness.

Then there's the people who always bring chips to get-togethers...and really, I don't like those people. I also hate it when they bring store bought cupcakes....because, man, what a letdown. First, you're like "oh boy, cupcakes!" and then you find out that they came from the cheapo grocery store down the street and taste like shortening.

When I do cupcakes, I go all out....all out to the point where I like to take pictures and my husband says "let me guess, you're putting those on the Internet again, aren't you?" Why even make cupcakes if you're not going to put them on the Internet? WHY?

So, last weekend, the weekend before Halloween, we threw a Halloween Party. We've only been here since March, so it was a little iffy if we'd have enough people show up or if everyone would be creeped out by those new people who are inviting them over for brownies and cake.

We had tons of families show up, each with a gaggle of children, all ready to crawl through my husband's "haunted house" he set up in our homeschool room. I wish I could have pictures to show this to you...perhaps I can find some, but there's just no way to describe this beast that has taken over my house for the past two weeks.

Anyway, so the party is starting at 6pm...and I'm doing good. I'm making snacks, I'm making dinner, trying to get everything done. Then, at 4:40, my husband starts asking about this video I borrowed from the library. All it is is a fire. A campfire, to be exact. All 30 minutes of it is a video of a campfire...which is kind of cool and spooky. He can't find the video! Where is the video? Woman, what have you done with it?

As he's running around like crazy, I tell him to go BACK to the library and get the other copy. I doubt they've had a rush on crappy campfire videos and if he hurries, it will be his. Here's the deal: He's got 20 minutes to get there before they close.

On the way out, he calls me from his work cell phone and starts mumbling about pizzas and how I need to order them. I'm figuring, with all that I'm making, we need about two. He's thinking along the lines of nine.So I appease him and say "seven," though I finally change the number to five.

So, about 5:10, I'm starting to panic. The kitchen is a disaster. I'm not dressed (nor was I wearing deodorant-- hooray!) food is everywhere and I'm not ready. Then, I get a call from my husband. "YOU ORDERED FIVE PIZZAS!" he said in a panicked voice.

Dude, we're feeding a bunch of 4-8 year olds, not a football team. And, trust me, most of these kids have skinny mamas...they're not scarfing down boxes of pizzas.

I call my mom, who had just moved here the day before, in a panic. "COME! NOW! HELP! HELP!" Then she comes and I start drinking alcohol and wondering why we just didn't go and cater this whole thing. Don't people cater little Halloween get-togethers for kids? Huh?

At that point, it gets a little fuzzy, but I'm pretty sure I finally put on deodorant.

The party was excellent, even if I forgot to change and didn't have on makeup. (Hey! Only one horrible picture showed up on Facebook. Score!)

Finally, after everyone left and I surveyed the (not so bad) damage, I realized it...I didn't even make cupcakes. In fact, I hadn't baked ANYTHING from scratch.

I looked at my husband, who was busy scurbbing pots. "I guess we'll just have to have a Christmas party, then."

Cider flavored cupcakes, anyone?

Friday, October 30, 2009


A long, long time ago, I remember spending my days being so incredibly bored. My husband would come home from work and I'd complain about how bored I we needed to get out and Do! Something!

These days, I feel as if I'm a chicken with my head cut off. I'm running around, spewing blood and bumping into neighboring cows and pigs.

Luckily, we have plans to steam clean our carpet soon-- that'll help get rid of all that chicken blood on the white floor.

Be back soon. Really soon.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Let Him Eat Cake

"So, what's for dinner," my husband asked Thursday after I picked him up from work.

In a very dramatic fashion, complete with throwing myself in a rumpled heap on the couch, I said "NOTHING! WE HAVE NOTHING TO EAT!" We couldn't even just eat noodles with cheese, as we were already out of shredded cheese and I had used the last of our sliced provolone two nights before (in place of shredded cheese, to be exact).

After what seemed like an hour of me complaining about how we're always out of food and we don't even have four raisins to share-- never mind two of us do not eat the nasty buggers-- that we were all going to starve and die and where's Al Gore when you need him-- we came to the conclusion that dry noodles would not work.

Finally, we got up and headed over to a local Mexican joint, one my daughter refers to as "Old Charles," though it is not old and nobody there is named Charles. We dined on enchiladas and margaritas and headed over to the local Hippy Health Food Store in the same shopping center.

I personally like doing my shopping after having an alcoholic beverage. It makes it a bit more fun.

"Squeeze the melons, children. Just sqquuueeeezzzzzeee them." 

My husband brought the two kids over to the Halloween store to view the creepies while I did my shopping. The store was rather empty, as most of the Snow Birds in town do their shopping on Wednesday afternoon- DOUBLE AD DAY!-- before they go and eat dinner at the resonable hour of 4pm.

Before they can have that dinner, however, they have to drive slowly down the road, hands perched at 1 and 11 on the wheel, while staying precariously close to the center lane.

Yay for snowbirds! I hear they taste like chicken.

I wheeled my cart through the store quickly, throwing this and that into my basket, hoping to get out before the kids came in and started screaming for organic gummy worms from the bulk bins. As I stood in line to check out, I realized that I had a basket of food for my son.

You see, I hardly ever eat sugar anymore. I'm more of a social sugar eater-- desserts and such at parties, but I don't snack during the day. So most of the prepackaged foods at the store, even the Hippy Health Food Store, are out.

I'm looking into the basket and I see $70 worth of things to keep my 3-year-old boy fed. Hippy Pop Tarts (for snacks on the go, not breakfast), Hippy Fruit Strips, honey sticks, kefir, Annie's Mac and Cheese, strawberries, prunes, raisins, nuts...the list goes on and on.

How is it possible for one child to eat so much? I swear he must have a is the only way I can explain how he can down so much food in such a short time.

This is a child who could eat a twelve course meal and then, 30 minutes later, ask for a snack, preferably goldfish crackers, if possible.

I spend my days trying to think of ways to feed him without overloading on things such as crackers/pretzels/goldfish. Apples with honey, apples with peanut butter, yogurt, fruit strips, popcorn, fruit, frozen tubes of yogurt...I do it all.

And yet, he is still not satisfied.

It is to the point where I just want to keep a basket of fresh snacks next to me on the couch, and when he asks for "a 'nack," I can just throw a piece of meat at him and tell him to eat like a shark (no hands allowed!).

If I could at least keep him occupied by trying to catch meat in his mouth for at least half the day, I feel there's a chance I could cut his food bill in half. If the whole plan works well, and he's successful eating like a shark, I might even consider springing for that expensive grass fed beef.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Eat your heart out, 99 cent store.

I'm always surprised when I see pictures of families with kids and I notice that they have nice things in their house. Nice things? With children? Really? How the heck do you do it?

I gave up on nice things oh...about five years ago. Why bother? The second I'd bring a $1,000 couch into my living room, someone would climb on it and use it as a uncapped marker holding station. I can already see the black and blue streaks everywhere...probably because I have matching streaks on my couch.

My couch is a beauty. I love my couch. It is orange, holds three adults and even folds out into a hide-a-bed! How great is that? What is even better about my couch is that we got it on the side of a road. It was at a church garage sale and the sign said "Free!"

I know my taste is different than other people's taste...but how could they not think someone would want to pay for this couch? Heck, I would have paid $10 for it. Maybe even $20. But the fact that it was free cemented the love I have for my couch even more.

When we first moved to Arizona, we needed a lamp for our living room. We bought a lamp from a big box store, which promptly broke. So, we bought another one...but having spent over $1 on it meant...the kids broke it.

I don't think the world's supply of duct tape could hold this sucker up. It hunches like a drunk in a bad wind storm-- you never know what is going to set it off and make it topple.

And then, I saw it. Our new lamp. It was at a resale shop we frequent and I had my eye on it. I want to say, originally, it was $10 or so. And then it was listed in the half price sale. When it didn't went down to 99 cents.

99 cents for a lamp, people. That's less than a dollar!

I bought that lamp and brought it home. I couldn't stop raving about my awesome new red lamp to sit next to my awesome orange couch! The only problem was that my husband wasn't down with me about the lamp. He worried how long it would last in our house-- this being a large breakable lamp next to the couch...also known as our "diving board."

If something has ever screamed "break me" louder than this, I'd be surprised.

Even better? My 99 cent lamp is sitting atop a 50 cent table I bought at a yard sale. My entire living room set cost me less than $2. 

As I sat and admired my beautiful orange lamp, I turned and looked at my husband. "Who cares if they break it," I said. "I'd be sad, sure. But it cost less than a dollar. At that price, the kids can break as much furniture as they want."

Because, when something costs $1,000 a little crumb on it is a big deal. When the entire set is less than a Starbucks could drop an entire crumb cake on it and I wouldn't even flinch.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Hair, There, Everywhere!

I have spent the past few days thinking constantly about my hair. Okay, nix that...the past few weeks? Months? I'm one of those people who have Grand Ideas when it comes to my hair, but the second I sit down in the stylist's chair, my ideas go out the window and I say things such as, "Let's shave all my hair!"

I wanna be Britney, darnit! Make me Britney!

Several years ago, I went pixie. As in boy cut. It was cute and it took all of two seconds to fix my hair in the morning. But then...the pixie just got on my nerves. I worried I looked like a boy. A boy with boobs, but a boy. I worried it highlighted my double chin. And so, one day, I grew it out.

Have you ever tried to grow out a pixie hair cut? Have you ever tried to pull your fingernails out one by one? The process is very similar.

Here's the picture of the pixie:
Day 14: Moses

Here's a picture of my hair, yesterday:


I've started wondering if I can do a version of this:

As I sat in my stylist's chair, feeling both scared and bold at the same time, I started analyzing hair. What is it that I like? What is it that I don't like? Who would my hair vote for? Who would my hair like to meet most, living or dead? Does it have a favorite book? Has it ever been a part of Oprah's book club?

And why do I have such a fear of having "mom hair?" I am a Mom, aren't I?

My stylist insists that Mom Hair is a state of mind (she's 26 without kids). I say "I want to be fashionable! I want to be a hot mom!"

She takes a hot curling iron and smacks me across the head, hoping it will shut me up. It doesn't work.

I read a blog recently that asked about what my look says about me. Hip? Cool? Frumpy? And honestly, I don't know. I hope, on the cusp of 30, that it says I'm finally getting things together. That I'm finally starting to figure things out. That hey, my shoes and shirt match for once and I actually change out of my pajamas before noon.

And if all that's too much? I hope it at least doesn't say sometimes I forget to brush my teeth.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Mommy and Daddy

Mommy and Daddy, originally uploaded by *Mama*Bear*.

One of the few photos of me and my husband. He's cleaning up after dinner. I was just watching videos of Pomplamoose Music on YouTube.


When I was in Junior High, I'd get hung up on the idea of "good" and "bad" days. As in, oh no, I dropped my pencil and it left a mark on my white shirt! BAD DAY BAD DAY BAD DAY!

Abort! Abort!

I finally got to the point where I stopped doing that as constantly labeling a day "good" or "bad" is really setting yourself up for something.

But, I'm serious here...I'm having a BAD DAY.

But, what can I say? When you spend your days at home with Moody and her little brother, Whiny, what do you expect? Usually, Moody sets it off. She has a bit of a controlling personality at times and if I decide not to give in to whatever demands she has at that moment, you can forget it.

All Hell breaks loose. The world will no longer spin on its axis and, also? All of the fire and damnation of 1,000 beasts is aimed right at my head.

I've been getting over being sick. So that puts me in a bit of a down mood. I'm planning a Halloween party that has quickly turned to s-h-i-t. (Spelling it out, mommy-style.) People can't come! Other people are showing up late! I can't get invitations to some people because they have stopped attending homeschool events while other people don't respond to emails. exactly do you find someone in the phonebook when all you know her is as "Audrey's Mom?"

So with the pressure of a Halloween party that's turning to crap, the sickness that won't end and my child acting as if she's posessed by Marilyn Manson, I'm starting to lose it.

A glass jar is dropped on the floor. In that moment, every single "you're not allowed to say that" word came out of my mouth. Stupid, hate, dumb, a few more "choice" words that won't make it to the Internet. (No they weren't used to describe my children, but the whole situation.)

What I'm realizing about this whole "experiment" of sorts is that it gives me control. I LIKE control. Control makes me feel steady, makes me feel accomplished, even if all I accomplished is sweeping under the kitchen table after lunch.

All these little bumps in the road are taking away my control. The sickness, other people's commitments,  my child's complete and total inability to just CALM DOWN just gets to me. And when I feel as if my goat is, in fact, gotten, I start slacking in other areas.

I have to learn that when things don't go right in one area that it doesn't give you a "get out of jail free" card to let it all go.

I need to turn that lack of control into a mean, lean cleaning machine. Or at least someone who can put the laundry into the washer.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Overcomitted Betty!

The past few weeks have gone by in a blur. One of my big goals when I moved here was to meet more people. I'm slowly but surely doing that...though I'm still working on the whole "follow-up" issue of turning people I meet into friends.

Such as, it is hard to follow up when that potential friend stops attending the event we met at. Do I look her email up on the group website? Do I send a carrier pigeon? Do I show up on her driveway, a la "Say Anything" with a boombox over my head? And what, exactly, do I do if I don't have a boombox? I don't even have an iPod.

I guess I shall bring my laptop and aim it at her house.

I offered to make a cake for my friend's son's 4th birthday party. Here's the deal: It was a Star Wars theme. Knowing better then just to wing it at the last minute, I spent every waking moment Googling "Star Wars cakes" and testing them at home.

My life became one big fondant covered cake wreck.

Finally, with the clock ticking down, I had a "Hail Mary" moment and discovered marshmallow fondant and the concept of kneading the dough until it was not sticky anymore.

Just after I finished that cake, I had to start in on lesson plans for my daughter's homeschool co-op. A co-op basically is like school, but you only go for one class and all the kids are homeschooled. I offered to teach the lesson on Texas for this geography class...which quickly turned into a lesson on Texas, Oklaohoma and Arkansas.

It was so hard for me not to say "Arkansas! It is where the Duggars come from!"

Gah, I love me some Duggars. Mama Duggar is my hero. How she manages to stay sane and still have time to boink Papa Duggar is beyond me. I'd love to spend a day with them...though it probably won't happen know that I said "boink Paper Duggar."

By the time the co-op class came around, I was sick. As much as I kept waiting for it to turn into Pig Flu, all I got was a sinus infection. Unfortunately for these kids, when I get sick, I totally lose my ability to think. I'm like "Uh, Texas. Um...oil? I have no idea what oil is! I'm sick! Wanna hear about that?"

I hope to never speak of Arkansas again. Really. I'm still recovering from the dismal failure that was my ability to teach anything worth learning.

If I've learned anything these past few is that anything worth doing is worth covering in fondant. Speaking of doing things, this Spring I'm teaching a class on the Holocaust for the co-op. Now, if I could just figure out how to combine that with fondant...I'd be a happy lady.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Betty Wouldn't Use the Coat Hanger!

Way back in the day, when I used to be A Real Blogger (much different than the crappy blogger I am now), I had a secret. Odd for someone who spent her time telling all her secrets to the big and vast Internet, but I had one.

My children? They are homeschooled.

There. I said it. What's funny about this, especially if you don't know me or never read any of my old blogs, is that I'm not exactly a cool, relaxed mama. I don't treat every moment with my children like a Moment of Zen; I have no intention to scrapbook first poops or do finger plays (whatever they are) or read aloud Dickens to my children.

No, the other day, I let them watch Dora and called it a Spanish lesson. Just to prove it, I recently, out of the blue, looked at my daughter and said "Say backpack in Spanish!" and she answered "mochilla."

Sweet baby Jesus, my child is a genius I tell you.

(In other news, I have planted the Dora seeds of doubt in her mind. "Why is she hanging around with a talking monkey?" My daughter's eyes grew as big as saucers as she pondered that information.)

Besides the fact that I'm training my children to grow up to be socially inept weirdos who are unable to breathe through their noses, having kids at home all day can cramp your style. Especially if you're trying to be Betty Crocker, not Mommy Dearest.

My keeping them sheltered from the world for my sick pleasure homeschooled was one of the reasons I decided to change my life. There was no way I could have these two around all day when the living room was a mess, we were eating breakfast at noon and the toilet had a red ring around it!

The horror! I didn't want my children growing up like slobs, and if they stayed home with me, they were going to have a PhD in "How Not to Live Your Life." (Lesson #1: Do not blog about your life. Or other people's lives. Lesson 2: Peanut butter is not a food group.)

A surprising thing has happened in the past month or how long this has been going house is staying clean. Sure, there are still Hot Wheels cars all over the floor, but they're much easier to pick up than trying to do that in addition to picking up 100 headless, naked barbies, cleaning paint off the ground and facing a sink full of dishes.

Life is becoming much more managable now.

And, thanks to a couple of Glade Plug-Ins, I can happily walk into my house and know that it smells like "Autumn Harvest," not death, poop or old people.

Ain't life grand?

Thursday, September 24, 2009

I'm Not Crapping My Pants

I hear that some Moms always tell their children to wear clean underwear in case they get in an accident. You know, say one day you're walking down the street and BAM, a car runs into you. You have to go to the hospital as you are now missing an arm.

The paramedics are cutting off your clothes and then, uh oh, you're wearing your dirty skivvies. They all laugh. They laugh so hard they can't reattach your arm.

And then you die.

I personally like to wear clean underwear so that I don't stink like a dirty sailor...or in case Dr. Derek Shephard is the attending surgeon when I go to Seattle Grace for my brain tumor. I hear hot attending surgeons need to know that you're wearing clean drawers.

Good gravy...where am I going with this?

So, clean skivvies. You keep them clean, just in case. That's the same thing with my house. I've come up with a whole new thinking that helps me keep my house clean: What if I die tomorrow and my family has to come to my house to help out?

Do I want them to remember Dead Betty by her dust bunnies and unwashed clothes? NO! I want them to see my nice and clean house and feel at ease while they plan for the large memorial for me.

(Death references at two, so far.)

In case I don't drop dead any time soon, it is also important to keep your house clean in case someone stops by. No one ever stops by my house except for these crazy guys who are always selling meat from their truck. I don't trust truck meat, so I finally told them I was a vegeterian and shut the door.

But! You never know. You just never know if someone is going to show up to hang out just like you never know if someone is going to run you over on the street.

(Death reference: three.) cleaning finally payed off! Just after 11,  we were finishing cleaning up lunch when the door bell rang. My kids, the loons they are, screamed "DELIVERY" and took off running. I ran after them, assuming Meat Truck Guy had shown up once again. There, to my surprise, was my neighbor.

She was in her pajamas and I heard something that sounded like "phone." Honestly, it took a couple of takes before I finally figured out she was locked out of the house and her 1-year-old was still inside.

Luckily, the kid was happily watching Elmo. In fact, she probably shut her out just to get extra time with that red furball on crack.

So she came in and my house was in pretty darn good shape. A few toys out, but that was about it. And I got to say "oh sorry about the mess, we were just finishing up lunch."

And it felt good.

In fact, so good, that I'm going to make sure I always wear pretty panties now...just in case. Because if I can have a clean house and someone I know knocks on the door unexpectedly....then hell must be freezing over.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

The Curious Case of the Pumice Stone in the Toilet

My husband and I have resided in three different states in the seven years we've been married. We moved to North Carolina the day we got back from our honeymoon. Two years to the week, we moved to Texas. We managed to stay in Texas for over four years before life shifted and we arrived in Arizona.

With each state move, we've had to learn a lot of different things. We've learned street names (including the Arizona ones that are all in Spanish-- hooray for high school Spanish class), which grocery stores to visit and which restaurants you should generally avoid unless you enjoy vomiting in the middle of the night.

I've also learned a thing or two about potties, showers and water.

When we moved to Arizona, I found a crazy thing happening: a ring around the toilet, even though I constantly scrubbed the thing!

Turns out, that reddish ring we see in the toilet (and also the red stains that can show up in the shower, as we often had in North Carolina) are caused by Hard Water. Hard Water is water that has excess minerals in it. Why it has excess, I have no idea.

I'm sure Suzanne "colonic queen" Summers would have a way to remove them. 

I tried EVERYTHING to get rid of these stains: scrubbing, Borax, pouring bleach into the toilet (yes, I know. I KNOW) and even praying to the Sweet Baby Jesus to please make my toilet pretty.

Nothing worked.

Then, I went to my friend, the Internet...and it told me all about hard water stains and how you have to use a bit of elbow grease...and a pumice stone. For those of you who aren't down with the girlie things, pumice stones are used to rub callouses off your stanky feet.

They're also used to rub stains out of the crapper.

So, one evening, after I finished my dinner, I went to the bathroom, yellow rubber gloves and pumice stone in tow. (Notice I said after I finished my dinner. Everyone else was still eating. My daughter always asks why I eat so fast and, dear child, it is because I don't spend half the meal walking around, filling up glasses full of ice and complaining that my brother looked at me the wrong way.)

I got to business. I scrubbed. I scrubbed even harder. I felt my elbow go completely out from scrubbing. But, still, I soldiered on.

At the end, I had a completely beautiful toilet once again. Never shall I ever be slave to a red ring around the toilet! Never shall I try to pour bleach into the bowl!

So I rinsed both the pumice stone and gloves off and placed them in the drying rack in the sink. It seemed like a good place to me. They needed to dry; it was a drying rack.

Oh, but no. My husband. He freaks out. All of a sudden he's all "I can't believe you put a pumice stone in my dish drainer when it has been in the toilet."

I think I mumbled something under my breath that those who do not scrub the toilet do not get to whine, but I don't think he could hear me. I just kept hearing squeals and shrieks and "so nasty" as he scrubbed my sink.

The next morning, my son finds said pumice stone in the garage. I take it from him and place it in the laundry room, for the next time I have to use it to clean a toilet.

And, husband, please do not worry. I shall not use the dish drainer as a place to dry it.

I shall use your pillow.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Having my mixed beverage and drinking it, too.

Several months ago, upon the the reccomendation of (cough cough, whisper) Gwyneth Paltrow (end whisper), I read a book called Spent. It was all about how not to be tired anymore! In fact, you could be happy and fabulous and possibly grow up to look like Gwyneth Paltrow.

Say what you must, but I'd take Gwyneth over my sad little frumpy state any day.

So I read the book. Here were three of the main tenets: No sugar. No alcohol. No caffeine.

I laughed my butt off at numbers two and three. No alcohol OR caffeine? Surely you jest. Nobody actually does they? And...why would I? Those two things help me when I'm feeling Spent.

But, I decided that I'd try the whole no sugar thing. After reading the book, I felt I could at least give it a try. My life, at that point, had become one big nap. All I ever felt like doing was sleeping. Everyone kept yelling THYROID at me, but it always checked out perfectly normal. There had to be something else. There had to be another way.

Note: When I say I felt sleepy, I don't mean the "oh I can take a nap" sleepy. I'm talking about CRAZY tired. I call these my "tin foil hat days," days where I'm completely unable to function at all. Most of the time, I was incredibly grumpy, and I was sure the world was out to get me.

On tin foil hat days, you could find me rocking back and forth in a closet, ranting about who really killed JFK.

The first three days were brutal. I just felt horrible. I remember standing in line at the grocery store, totally in a No Sugar Bad Mood and thinking to myself "just get through three days. One more day." And I did...and then, I felt better.

While I still have two triggers that make me incredibly sleepy (stress and heat), I don't feel as run-down all the time. But what about alcohol? You see...I like to make mixed drinks. I'm not a beer person. But...most of those mixed drinks were so full of sugar, they seemed as if I were licking lollypops.

Granted, they were vodka-laced lollypops, but you get the idea. 

Then I came up with a magical solution: ALL NATURAL ORANGE JUICE! Mixed with Vodka! Not from concentrate!

So, now when I pull out my Simply Orange juice along with my vodka, I don't feel as if I'm loading myself up with added sugar. (Natural sugars do not count.) I can almost say I'm doing something good for my health, as it has CALCIUM included.

Calcium! For strong bones! Who doesn't need strong bones?

The best part of all this, besides not being sleepy, still enjoying alcohol and getting in an extra source of calcium into my diet? I've managed to keep those 10 pounds I lost off.

Sure, I may not be Gwyneth skinny, but perhaps if she had a cocktail or two, she could totally lose that constipated look she spots in photos.

Monday, September 14, 2009

How It All Began

There's always been things about life that I just ASSUMED would happen. When you're a child, you assume you'll grow up, get a decent paying job and hopefully, live a better life than your parents-- at least, financially. Well, unless your dad is a multi-billionaire, then you'd just have to hope you could squeeze by on a few millions until the geezer kicks the bucket.

I assumed I'd have a good job. I even hoped, though I can't really say I assumed, to have a good marriage. (Honestly, I always thought I'd end up a cat lady. Sometimes I'm still surprised I was lucky enough to get married to a Cool Guy.)

One of those things I always assumed would happen would be acting like a grown up. I'd learn to pick up after myself, learn to cook and clean and sing happy songs to children while having fabulous hair and perky boobs.

Sadly, reality is often harsh.

My house was constantly a mess, even though I felt as if I was always doing SOMETHING. We had grown accustomed to eating peanut butter and jelly sandwiches every night...that is, if we had bread. I felt as if my days were one big blur of crap.

It always seemed as if everyone else had their lives together.

That's when I started it. The Betty Crocker Experiment. At 29, it was time for me to learn to be a grown up. It was time to learn to clean the house, pick up after myself and eat something that wasn't smooshed between two slices of bread.

It was time for a change. A big one.

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