Archive for March, 2008

Save the Ta-Tas!

Get out there and get your baseline mammograms, ladies! I had mine this morning – it took all of 15 minutes, and was *not* painful. Though D and I decided that maybe those of us blessed with bigger ta-tas feel less pain because you don’t have to tug hard (or far away from your chest) to get them on the plates in all their floppy glory.

Anyway – large or small…SAVE THE TA-TAs. Get  your mammogram ASAP!


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Who can’t relate to this?  Another fabulous essay by My Friend Wreke.




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You know, that ritual in which you seriously scrub your abode from top to bottom until it is squeaky clean in places you generally don’t know even existed. And by “occasionally”, I mean “annually.” Ok, ok, biennially.

OK. OK!!! Never.

There, I said it. I have *never* cleaned certain places in this house. I mean, why clean them if you can’t see them?!

But when you are preparing to sell your house you clean and freshen *everywhere* and you do things to your house that no sane person would do, and you don’t question it either. My friend Amy, whose house is also for sale, said that one realtor she interviewed told her — with no sense of irony…or even recognition — NO WIRE HANGERS.

The Realtor says rip up the carpet on the basement steps and paint them? Sure, you betcha! Paint the floor in the unfinished side of the basement battleship gray? No problem! Fill the cracks in the garage floor and paint that battleship gray, too? Sign me up.

THE BASEMENT FLOOR? Surely you jest. But ok, we did it. And yes, it looks great. As D said, “wow, now you look in here and say ‘what great storage’ instead of ‘ewwwwwww’.”

So I begin to tackle one of my parts of the project last night…the basement steps. I give hearty tugs on the carpet and hear satisfying rrriiiiipping sounds as it comes off in one big piece. I feel accomplished and powerful. I Am Woman, Hear Me Roar and all that… I did just fine, ripping, tugging, pulling… I didn’t flinch when the now-disturbed basement fiberglass ceiling tiles rained their dusty, itchy particles down on my unsuspecting head.

I can deal with fiberglass ceiling tiles, dirt, and the selection of puncture wounds in my fingers from the carpet staples.

But I draw the line at the 2 ounces of mouse poop that fell onto my head as the last piece of carpet near the ceiling tore free.

Gross gross gross.

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…to Great-Grandmother’s House we went…it’s Easter in South Bend!!

Yessiree, Bob – that’s 11 hours one-way for 48-hours in paradise! Totally worth it, of course, to see D’s beloved grandparents. It really was a nice weekend. And all things considered, the kids were fabulous in the car, especially since I am the Meanest Mother Ever and didn’t provide distractions like Gameboys or DVD players…no, no, we did it the old fashioned way…games of I Spy, Animal/Vegetable/Mineral, coloring books, stickers, etc.

Still, at Hour 10 on Friday…about an hour after the kids usually eat dinner (no food in sight, of course)…snowstorm in full force on the Indiana Turnpike…A had clearly had enough. See for yourself:

A: I AM SO SICK OF BEING IN A CAR!!!!!!!! I hate this, Daddy!
Daddy: Hang in there kiddo – only a little while longer.
A: Why do we have to drive anyway?!?!?!
Daddy: It’s an adventure!
A: Mommy says we have to drive BECAUSE YOU ARE CHEAP.

<mommy practically suffocates from trying not to laugh out loud>

Daddy: I’m not cheap. I’m frugal.
A: I don’t want frugal! I want my dinner!
K: I’ll have a fruit bowl!

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Why do so many people have issues with men and women being friends?

I have a number of men friends. Some of them are among my closest friends. Some of them are straight, even. And some are married to women whom I also consider to be among my closest friends. Surely I can’t be the only married woman who has close men friends. What do you think, Dear Readers…can men and women truly be friends? Or, as Harry says to Sally, does that pesky sex stuff get in the way?

Sure, at one point in time I had messed around to one degree or another with almost all of my close male friends. Except for the gay ones. Hmmm…wait a minute…nope, even some of the gay ones (which I suppose technically made them Bi- at the time…whatever.) Oh and except for one college pal named Mike – the fact that we never hooked up was a huge point of pride between us considering the incestuous, close-knit group we ran in. But that was in high school and college – everyone messed around with everyone so I don’t find my antics particularly relevant.

Although I no longer make a habit of messing around with my close male friends, the concept of cross-gender friendships in mature adults seems to trouble a lot of people. People actually raise their eyebrows if I happen to mention that one of my close male friends is a work colleague whose wife I am also rather close to. Eyebrows positively launch into hairlines when I say that perhaps my absolute closest male friend – besides my brother – is my husband’s best childhood friend. One person was “shocked” that my husband “let me” have drinks with a male friend by myself. Baking powder? Not in my world, sister.

Harry says that no man can be friends with a woman he finds attractive because he always wants to have sex with her. Is that supposed to make me run screaming? Girlfriend, I’m pushing 40 and I am 15 pounds overweight (Ok, 20 pounds). If some man who wasn’t my husband wanted to sleep with me I’d be *flattered* not horrified. I laughed for days when, 6 years ago, my friend Margo’s 21 year old nephew referred to me as a MILF…once I figured out what a MILF was.

OK, I’ll play…let’s assume that some of my men friends find me attractive (I don’t know, I’ve never come out and asked…) why is that a bad thing? Do people automatically assume that eros — passionate/erotic love, and philia — friendship love, must coincide? Or rather, collide?

I *heart* having men friends. They bring perspective to situations that most women can’t possibly. Mars and Venus and all that. To each his own, but my world would be a lesser place without my male friends. Here’s to you, boys.


Harry Burns: You realize of course that we could never be friends.
Sally Albright: Why not?
Harry Burns: What I’m saying is – and this is not a come-on in any way, shape or form – is that men and women can’t be friends because the sex part always gets in the way.
Sally Albright: That’s not true. I have a number of men friends and there is no sex involved.
Harry Burns: No you don’t.
Sally Albright: Yes I do.
Harry Burns: No you don’t.
Sally Albright: Yes I do.
Harry Burns: You only think you do.
Sally Albright: Are you say I’m having sex with these men without my knowledge?
Harry Burns: No, what I’m saying is they all WANT to have sex with you.
Sally Albright: They do not.
Harry Burns: Do too.
Sally Albright: They do not.
Harry Burns: Do too.
Sally Albright: How do you know?
Harry Burns: Because no man can be friends with a woman that he finds attractive. He always wants to have sex with her.
Sally Albright: So, you’re saying that a man can be friends with a woman he finds unattractive?
Harry Burns: No. You pretty much want to nail ’em too.
Sally Albright: What if THEY don’t want to have sex with YOU?
Harry Burns: Doesn’t matter because the sex thing is already out there so the friendship is ultimately doomed and that is the end of the story.
Sally Albright: Well, I guess we’re not going to be friends then.
Harry Burns: I guess not.
Sally Albright: That’s too bad. You were the only person I knew in New York.

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Today my office officially approved my transfer.
I am moving.
I still have trouble saying that.

So to help me, I am thinking of some of my favorite things about moving to rural New Hampshire…

My farmer’s market

My CSA (which I can’t join this summer because of timing…but they have Winter shares!)

The Children’s Theatre

The Summer Theatre

The Food Co-op

A’s Summer Camp (Hopefully! Please note that a full-day M-F camp in the DC area for $110/week would be your choice of two camps: one run by Elliot Spitzer and the other by Marion Barry)

My favorite houses to possibly buy are this one and this one. The first one needs a garage and some added living space (a guest suite or some kind of rec room/convertible space with a bathroom); the second needs a two-story master bedroom suite/great room addition. Either way, our mortgage would be far less than it is now.

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Out of the Closet

It is time. Finally, finally, I can speak publicly about what has been consuming my life for nearly 10 weeks. We are…

…moving to New Hampshire.

Anti-climactic for you all, I know. No death, destruction, divorce (yet) or babies belonging to the milkman. But this has been a roller-coaster since damned near Christmas and because it generally was not public knowledge for various reasons I couldn’t write about it here and writing is the best way I know how to process stuff.

D was presented with an opportunity he really can’t refuse. It’s in the Dartmouth/Lake Sunapee Region of New Hampshire, which is pretty much in the middle of nowhere — both a blessing and a curse.

We have talked for a long time about raising the kids away from a metro area – somewhere more outdoors-focused and generally environmentally friendly where people hike, bike, camp, fish, ski, waterski, snowshoe, etc. A place where once is not concerned about French immersion programs for 4 year olds; where you don’t have to schedule swimming and play dates and sports teams to ensure your kids get enough exercise. But this plan was always for “someday” – not for now. So when this opportunity presented itself no one was more gobsmacked than me. I oscillate from being excited to being convinced that agreeing to do this is the worst.decision.ever. Not that there was ever really a decision to make – D wants this so badly he can taste it and although he said we won’t go if I don’t want to, I know that isn’t an option. I can’t in good conscience not agree to try something that means this much to him…even though I am not convinced he would do the same for me if the situation were reversed (his selfish gene is waaaaay stronger than mine – and a giving nature combined with 30+ years of Catholic Guilt is such a winning combination…) And parts of me really want to go. Especially since my office – which has to be the most wonderful, flexible place of employment in the DC-metro area – has agreed to transfer me to our Boston office and let me telework a few days a week because New London, the town we’ll likely be living in, is not commutable to Boston.

There are good things about the move – probably more good than bad. Like this and this and this. And this and this. And all the 1950s kumbaya idyllic childhood stuff I mentioned above. Like the near-total financial freedom that comes with selling this house at about a 180% profit, which will allow us to pay off every bit of debt we have, flood the kids’ college fund (at the moment, the college plan in my house is “somebody dies.”) and buy a new house with lots of land and have a 1/3 smaller mortgage than we do now. And being within a few hours of a couple of good friends we hardly ever see.

But there are completely, totally, *sucky* things, too. Like moving 8 hours from almost all of our friends and family. Like me having to stay overnight in Boston 2 nights a week – away from the kids – to make the job situation work (thankfully I am paid more than well enough to make it worth it, financially.) Like leaving my friends/neighbors I’ve known for 9 years…we live on the best.street.ever. Like completely side-tracking my career (in terms of advancement).

But hey – there are silver linings, too. Now when I have to go to DC for work, I’ll have to stay in a hotel. Maybe I’ll be able to suss out who Clients 1-8 are.

And here’s where I need to thank – from the very bottom of my super-sized heart – a handful of dear friends friends for keeping me as sane as possible these last few weeks…you know who you are, and I love you to bits.

Here’s to our adventure…D leaves March 30. I stay here with the kids until school is over (let’s hear it for single moms) and follow sometime this summer.

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Never in a million years would I have thought that I a) would have wanted to shoot a gun or b) be decent at it! On our way to Vegas I decided I wanted to try it and – yay me – one of my best friends was up for teaching me. So one day in February he showed me some of his guns and taught me a little about them (gun safety, how they work, etc.) and then shortly afterward, he took me to the range and taught me to shoot.

Best. Feeling. Ever.

Lookee what I did!


Next time we’re going to the shotgun range. 🙂

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