From the monthly archives:

August 2008

Today I Am Thankful

by Mary Anne on August 29, 2008

Today is a day I have to digress from my normal snarky self to let you in on a dark secret of mine…I’m really a very nice person. Today is special day for me, it’s my birfday! And because of that, I feel a need to stop and think about all the people I am so thankful to have in my life and share with you because really, you should be as lucky as I am to know them.

I am thankful for The Man. We have been together for 18 years and we have had way more than our fair shares of ups and downs. Through it all, we stick together through thick and thin. He is well aware of every single fault I have and he loves me no matter what. Doesn’t matter if I’m a total mess or a gleaming godess of perfection, he’s there…and he never leaves. The Man is also a great dad and I adore watching him chase the kids around, carry them on his shoulders and play baseball with our son. He’s a great guy and he loves me and I just can’t ask for more than that.

I am thankful for my family, both my own and those I inhereted through marriage and those we added as god-parents to our children. I was blessed to have two parents who loved me to no end and invested their entire lives in me and I miss them both very much. I was lucky enough to marry into a family that accepted me and made me their own. I am grateful to have an aunt, an uncle we lost, and cousins who stepped in and became my defacto immediate family when I needed them to. For someone who found herself without a family at a young age, I am now proud to say I have a robust family to call my own and I love them all.

I am thankful to have the best set of girlfriends anyone could ever ask for. From the one I’ve known for 27 years to the ones I’ve known for six months and every single one in between, you will never meet a finer group of ladies both inside and out. Vitamin G is the thing that keeps me going when things get really tough or when I just need a laugh. Day in and day out, they would do anything for me, and I would do anything for them…no matter what time it is or how far apart we live. What an amazing group of women….so strong and so smart, every single one.

I am thankful to have amazing guy friends as well that balance me out. Some of them serve up some really great advice and support in times of need and some of them just flat out make me laugh. One thing they all have in common is they are the great equalizers in my life giving me the ability to have honest conversations about life on the other side of the field.

I’m always thankful for the things you would be crazy not to be thankful for…health, a home, a steady job.

But, the thing I am the most thankful for is this…

These two little people that I am blessed to call my children. Both unique, both strong, funny and loved by everyone, yet they are mine. I never knew I could love anything or anyone as much as I love these two amazing kids. For all the rants I do on them, know this, they are the center of my world and I thank my lucky stars every day for them. Does anyone need anything more than this?

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Dinner Theatre

by Mary Anne on August 28, 2008

At some point dinner at our house has to stop being a three ring circus show, it really does. It’s usually not Mr. C., though sometimes it can be if we try to hard to make him eat such difficult items as guacamole, any veggie other than broccoli (let’s not even talk about what happens if he even suspects salad may appear) or any type of potato served any other way than baked whole or fried. At least I have a clearly defined set of problems with him that I can usually operate within.

Miss G, however, tends to be difficult at every turn. Unless it is Mac and Cheese or Chicken Nuggets, it really need not apply. I am not going to go into what happened last week when I dared to serve a simple baked ziti because, quite frankly, I just don’t have the strength to revisit it. Here’s how it usually goes….dinner is on the table…five minutes later, we manage to convince her through a series of threats to join us. She does, for a moment and then needs to go to the “bafroom”. Comes back, sits down, picks at food and realizes whatever doll she is wanting to dine with that evening is not present. She must go get her friend, lest they feel left out. Sits back down for a moment and toys with our emotions by picking at her food. At that point, it’s time for the talent show portion of our meal which involves either a quick cheer or a dance routine. Lucky for us, we get this for free, some people pay for dinner theatre.

We’d pay not to have it.

Yelled at again, and now becoming annoyed at us for not appreciating her amazing dinner time talent, sits down, looks hard at food, and proclaims it “DISGUSTING”. This is the point where the threats of no desert start to kick in. She argues, she insists she needs another beverage, she puts a bite in her mouth and cries and the poisonous gruel we have put in front of her begins to take effect. The Man has always lost it at this point and demands she finishes eating. The crying begins in earnest at this point at which both of her parents turn against her. At some point, she will run screaming from the table to swear she does not want to eat another thing all night and we clear the table in our attempts not to create an early onset food issue of some sort. Jokes on us though as 20 minutes later when we are not looking she sneaks upstairs with one of the following: A baggie full of Goldfish, several packages of Cheetos or….if we are really lucky….a tub of chocolate Blue Bell ice cream that we find the next day after it has tuned into chocolate soup.

Now, I have to say here, had I ever acted like this once, just once, at dinner, my mother would have quietly put down the cigarette she was smoking to enhance the flavor of the food and without batting an eye sent me sailing halfway across the room. She was just that good and I was scared shitless of her.

We obviously don’t employ the same tactics, what with the whole CPS system and all, and tonight went about our usual dinner time exercise in futility. We served the ever offensive taco and quesadilla dinner and she wasn’t having any of it. Sophie, the doll joined us, (face down on the table, ass out…really not appropriate at all) then she tried to hang her Disney iPod on her Dad’s head, and before the dancing portion of the dinner could commence, Daddy called a halt to the entire thing and ended the show before the closing credits could roll. Miss G was escorted to another room, reprimanded and told not only would we lock the pantry to avoid the late night raid, no cartoons…and….she would have to go to her room and quietly read a book instead. The screams were primal and loud, and endless. I’m a little shocked the neighbors didn’t come next door to see if we were doing some type of human sacrifice, and if they could partake in it. In the end, with a whimper and a sigh, she went to her room with a book about counting bunnies and I found her there 10 minutes later quietly reading it…with her swim goggles on.

At least know I now what it takes to get her to read a book on her own.

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Pardon Me

by Mary Anne on August 26, 2008

Note to my loyal following….all five of you or so: Please pardon the ad situation I have going on right now. As you know, this is new and I’m figuring things out slowly. If you are seeing an ad for SWORDS, you know, the kind of thing people get KILLED with, I apologize. Also, it would appear that I am in favor of legalizing marijuana judging from some of the text ads I’m seeing. Do your own thing, it’s your journey, not mine. If you are seeing an ad for MicroFunding in Indonesia? Well, it doesn’t exactly fit here but if you are feeling generous today…go for it. It’s better than getting stoned and buying a sword anyway.

Hoping for a better tomorrow,
Mary Anne

UPDATE: Situation appears to be better now but I’m leaving this up just to be safe…and because it’s pretty damn funny too. :)

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The Ultimate Punishment For Diaper Rash

by Mary Anne on August 26, 2008

So here is my first post about my incredible Mr. C. I am going to do a lot of “flash back” with him because he is a super cool 4th Grader now and I don’t want him to hate me for embarrassing him….well, I will anyway but I am trying to contain the personal stories of the here and now about him to a minimum anyway.

When Mr. C was a baby, he had a really bad case of diaper rash. His skin would crack and bleed, we put every salve known to man on it. Boudreaux’s Butt Paste wasn’t invented then, (or if it was, we didn’t’ know it) but if any of you are new Mommies, I hear it is the bomb. We had tried everything for this hideous diaper rash. Every cream known to mankind was auditioned. We also tried warm baths. No luck. He also had a couple of really bad chest infections and croup so we had an arsenal of creams at our disposal upstairs.

One night, The Man and I got home from date night, paid the babysitter, thanked her for having our little angel asleep so we could have grown up time and walked her out the door. The minute the door closed, Mr. C awoke with a nasty poopy diaper. It could take two of us at that point to change his him. His little bottom hurt so bad, it was tough to get a good clean up in while trying to keep him from wiggling out of our grasp. So we went upstairs to do our job. I held his legs and spoke quietly to him, The Man did the dirty work and when it was all done and time to put the soothing cream on his little tushie he did just that.

You can imagine the shock on our faces when our little 6 month angel turned beet red and started doing the “I’m in so much pain I’m screaming but no sound is coming out” move. But then the sound came, and it was LOUD. His eyes were literally bugging out of his head. I was all, “WTF???” and The Man scrambled to find out what on earth could be the issue. Then I saw it, the cap off the cream put on his tushie….labeled not “Diaper Rash Crème” but rather, “MENTHOL”. OMG! Not The Man’s fault, they were all sort of housed in the same area and let’s face it, it was late, we were tired and we never anticipated poop at midnight…but there it was.

An hour, endless tears, and a bath later, the little man was in bed with us. One our first big dates nights since the arrival of Mr. C ruined, and a little boy with a burning butt safely tucked between us. So, all of you new Mommies out there, fear not, those of us that have gone before you have fucked it up enough so that there is very little you can do to shock us for we have seen it and pretty much done it all years later and our children are still alive in spite of us. I have another story to tell you later on about adventures in potty training but I’ll need to save that for now, while I regain my strength from admitting to this little failure.

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Back to School….YES!!!!

by Mary Anne on August 25, 2008

I love my kids, I really do. But today was officially Christmas in August as they headed to the bus this morning.

The Man and I are exhausted and ready to get back to a schedule. As mentioned, I work at home with my “real job”, you know, the one that pays the bills that I do from 8 – sometimes midnight every day. Having the kids in the house has not been an easy or pleasant situation and I can’t say I’ve been the best Mom in the world this summer. The whole running in and out of my office, screaming in the background, even running in to kiss me when I was on a call or mid thought on a huge proposal? Not so much. The kids can now recite to all their friends “Mommy is WORK-ING. To pay the MORT-GAGE.” I’m not sure they understand the whole mortgage word but by God, when I say it, it sounds scary. I had big plans to try and enjoy just a little bit of summer with them, but….it’s a start up and sometimes things don’t quite work out the way you planned. (Still needing to lose 10 lbs and lacking a serious tan were not part of my summer dreams either…)

The Man has his own set of relief for having them gone. He is mainly in charge of keeping them away from me when I am WORK-ING. To pay the MORT-GAGE. He too is scared of me during the time off. I don’t blame him really. I’ve had more than one Joan Crawford moment this summer and a few fell on his head. Add to that the endless, “I’m boooored” and the ever favorite game of “Gotcha Last” that goes on day after day after day (and started on day two)….well, he’s at the end of his rope too. Add to that, in this mess that appears to be a recession, he makes a tidy little sum in the stock market (which requires a few hours of concentration a day) and he’s had it. There is only so much “Daddy Circus” any human can provide and he is pretty much ready to hang up his clown nose.

We went to Meet the Teacher night on Friday, and it was nothing short of joyous. The countdown to regular schedules, more well behaved children…and of course the eight hours a day we are not listening to them fight, it all made us giddy with excitement. The kids, however, acutely aware of change on the horizon, turned into human suction cups. The fear of starting a new grade really hit home for both of them. Mr. C is stepping into the big leagues of fourth grade, Miss G is leaving the safety of Kindergarten and going into the real world that is first grade. We went out to dinner to celebrate and I spent the entire evening with one or both wrapping their arms around me or kissing me. That’s the good stuff right there. As much as I was stressed having them home all summer, the kisses in the middle of the day, the goofy little pranks played (always at the worst time), and just seeing them when I needed it most after a tough call or in the middle of trying to come up with the next great plan in advertising and drawing a blank, it was all good in hindsight. I’ll miss having their sweet faces around but it’s time to get back to basics, for them and for us.

I’ll admit we may have gone too far with our neighbor who was equally happy to see her kids go back off to school when we started cheering as the bus pulled up this morning. The bus driver didn’t find us any too amusing either I don’t think. The kids though? They thought we were cheering them on boarding the bus and got on with big smiles and waves goodbye so at least we aren’t total shits. Well, maybe we are but they don’t know it yet. Don’t tell them

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