Category Archives: NaBloPoMo12

There’s one good line in this whole damn thing.* **

We’re leaving in the morning for Pennsylvania, and I almost decided to just not write this post at all, because we are entering the fail now or fail later portion of NaBloPoMo – I will be travelling all day tomorrow with a toddler who saw that I was almost completely packed WELL ahead of schedule (I am a stay up all night the night before type, without fail, since the first time I flew, ever) and decided to spring a fever (of course she decided, I have met her and you have not, so I know), so the chances of me actually posting tomorrow night are pretty slim, and even if I do, then I am facing the entire rest of the month with the crappy equipment of the – oh, God, I know exactly how I am about to sound – stupid Android phone that will only let me upload pictures via email to Flickr which will then post all oddly and weird and I don’t even use email on the phone because it is stupid and I hate it and don’t even have that Flickr contact in the phone and I also hate stupid Flickr; or the iPad which doesn’t let me put in pictures and has a stupid keyboard that sometimes vanishes because my BOOBS touch it and they’re not even WARM boobs, being so large that nerves and blood vessels long since parked their Conestogas and settled in the DeSmets of the Breasts, and it’s not very kind about where it lets me select words; or the old MacBook Pro, which heats up like I imagine tiny breasts might and has a battery life of approximately 12 minutes.

Anyway, oddly, I persevere.


Q: What do you do when your weekly weigh ins are going well, but you’re going out of town for a month?


Now we’re free to see the world!

Also, we’re going to be gone for a month, and that’s a long time. I know my parents appreciate it a whole lot, and I know Phil is going to miss us, some of us more than others. I also know that he is going to appreciate the absence of some of us who never throw anything away. Actually, both of us don’t throw anything away, but one of us isn’t allowed to touch the trash can/go outside alone. Actually, neither of us gets to go outside alone.

I just thought I’d leave this here for Phil to find when he gets a spare moment of downtime at work on Friday, after we’re gone.

* One of the bonuses of dropping the ridiculous BlogHer ads, besides not getting checks every month, because I totally hated that part, was that I could start cursing in my post titles, and I realized I haven’t been taking advantage of that at all. Ball sack.

** A more sophisticated blogger would probably try to pretend like she didn’t know where her good lines were and play it off like she doesn’t laugh at her own jokes. There’s no more to this asterisk line.

There are a lot of invisible NOs as well.

I came home from my hair appointment tonight pretty late, and my head is stinky yet adorable, and I don’t have a headache, and moves were made before I left that lead me to believe that certain intentions were understood to be in the air on both sides, and when I came home and made to make good on said intentions, it turned out that SOMEONE just wanted to GO TO SLEEP.

While I believe that digging through your archives when you are in a BAD MOOD because you are leaving FOR A MONTH in less than 48 hours and you thought that there was a mutual understanding to do the business and it turns out no one is going to do the business goes against the spirit of NaBloPoMo, I think it’s PERFECTLY KOSHER to look through all of your draft posts and find an UNPUBLISHED post that just so happens to be conveniently about not doing the business, and post that.

Look, it’s November. Not only can they not all be winners, none of them are going to be winners.


Phil kept making gross sounds with his beer bottle. You’re going to have to trust me when I tell you it was super gross and frankly, quite egregious. I told him. I SAID, if you don’t stop doing that, I’m not going to do the business with you. And he wouldn’t stop. So I said, for every time you do that is one more day that I will not do the business with you. And he wouldn’t stop.

And that, students, is how The Great Sharpie Battle of 2011 began.

Settle This XIII: Waking Upon Request

First, some blog keeping. I think it’s pretty clear by now that if I say I’m going to post about something specific, that’s probably going to turn out to be a lie. I could offer an explanation every time, but let me just offer a blanket explanation for all of NaBloPoMo – headache, in bed, typing on the iPad, no boner for thousands of words on frustrating tiny keys – and you just assume that when you see a promised topic, it’s a lie, and apply my apologies and excuses in advance.

Second, if you haven’t ever read a Settle This post, commenting is fraught with danger, as it’s very easy to end up on the wrong side of my temper in one of three ways: not choosing me as the winner, making up your own third option when only two are offered, or in any other way attempting to be clever and manipulating the scenario the suit your own cleverness. “How dare you become annoyed at my generous comment,” you think. “After all, it was so clever!”

Come on. Don’t be that guy.

So here we go. Settle this.

Scenario: It’s the weekend, but one of you has to be somewhere in the morning. The other is awake with the kid. The sleeper tells the awaker, “I have to leave at 8. Please get me up at 7:15.” This conversation occurs sometime around 6am.

The sleeper never really goes all the way back to sleep, but instead just lays around in bed for a while. Eventually, the awaker comes in to get the sleeper up and out of bed.

“Thanks,” says the sleeper. But then, the sleeper notices something. “Hey, it’s only 7. You’re 15 minutes early.”

“Well, I wanted to make sure you were up in time.”

“That’s why I asked you to get me up at 7:15 – so I’d be up in time.”

“I was giving you a buffer.”

“I gave MYSELF a buffer when I said 7:15.”

“Yeah, but I gave you 15 extra minutes to wake up.”

“I’m an ADULT, not a teenager waking up for high school. I know when I need to get up.”



The question: When a person asks their spouse/partner/person who is awake in the house to provide wake up service, is it the duty of the awaker to provide a buffer time for the sleeper, or are they duty-bound, in fact, to stick strictly to the agreed upon time, even if they believe the sleeper has not allowed enough time for awakening and ejecting from the house?

Since, if you think about it, the awaker is doing the sleeper a favor, are they free to perform the favor with whatever kinda of tweaks and modifications they deem fit and necessary? Or should they just refuse to do such favors in the future if they don’t think they’re up to the task of performing them to the letter?

So, settle it, Internet. When an adult awaker is trusted with rousing the also adult sleeper at a specified time, is it right and correct for the awaker to stick to the agreed upon time, no matter any personal feelings or judgement, or may the awaker do what he or she redeems best, for whatever reason?

I can’t do what I was going to do, so let’s wait for one of the dogs to lactate.

I was at Ross tonight – do you have those? We didn’t have them where I lived before, but it’s like Marshalls or TJMaxx or whatever, and you can order those however you want in your mind. They are not exactly equal, but similar. Anyway, I was there, because I did not have it in me to go all the way out to TJMaxx, because even though it was only 6pm, it was already dark and I felt like I was not supposed to be out, and there was a woman who kept insisting that she needed more, more of the 18 month, she needed more selection, and she needed the poor guy tidying the shelves to go “look in the back” for her.

That’s all there is to that story, but it was enough of a story that I called my sister on my way home to tell her about it, even though I had limited phone battery left, and was potentially using up my one “I’m in a ditch on the side of this oddly desolate suburban road, probably going to die here alone!” phone call.

I also set off the car alarm from inside the car. I have no idea how I did that, or how I stopped it.

I was on the phone with my sister and somehow we got on the topic of what I was going to write about tonight, and I mentioned something about the relationship between blog posters and blog commenters, and my intent to post about that, and she said, “ha-ha, people are going to be angry at you.” So you know what, let’s save that one for tomorrow.

Instead, guess which one of these dogs ate a box of breastfeeding tea bags today:

Fat dog on a little couch.


I reject your notion of cleanliness and replace it with my own oily stink.

Time will tell, dogs. Time will tell. Three to five days of time, judging by how many tea bags were eaten by the dog in question who I am not saying is Brinkley, but I am definitely saying is probably not Sheldon. My house smells like fenugreek maple salmon dog food farts. Brinkley has settled into his old man years with gusto. He’s not even trying to hold them in anymore.

I realized last night that I miss Christopher Eccleston, which means that it’s about time to start Doctor Who all over. Who else is ready to go around again? Can we start together? I’m leaving on Friday, I’ll have the time.

I’ll do better tomorrow.

Desert baby bested by grass, mother unmoved, unhip, big hipped.

Let’s all just agree now that we won’t expect much from each other on the weekends.

Mine involved a lot of spitting (Penelope), a lot of “I don’t want to touch you,” (me, to various family members – some covered with wet food, some covered in stinky fur), and a lot of sighs of various tones (Phil – there were two trips to Target and an unfruitful hunt for a red cardigan that I think he knew that I knew was going to be unfruitful from the start. I did know. Sighs accepted.)

Oh, and we also went to dinner with The West Coast Aunts!

I would say that you could look forward to meeting the West Coast Aunts at PJs at TJ’s, but if you’ll look to your right, you’ll notice that registration is closed. I don’t really have anything more to say about that. I went into this paragraph thinking I was going to offer some consoling words, or say something about a wait list or whatever, but eh, if you were going to register, you would have done it by now.

Tomorrow, I have big plans – BIG PLANS. I’ve got to mail out some diapers I sold – did I tell you I’ve been selling my diapers? It took a while. When the first one sold, I had to lay down on the floor for a minute. Then I laughed and counted the $48 it sold for. I auctioned one yesterday, one that wasn’t even brand new and unworn like that first one, for $45.

It’s been getting easier.

After that, Pen and I will stop at JoAnn Fabrics for supplies for my much hipper hobby of counted cross stitch. My sister and I have begun collaborating on our own somewhat inappropriate patterns that will be available for purchase around probably never, or Christmas, depending on how action packed my month long trip to Pennsylvania is.

In other news, I’ve been participating in the Biggest Blogging Loser competition, and between that and a little work I’ve done on my own before it, I’ve lost 20 lbs, bringing me down to weighing… well, 20 lbs less than my prepregnancy weight and wearing one size larger than my prepregnancy size, and looking exactly zero percent different than I did three weeks after I had the baby, because I have giant boobs and a c-section pooch.

But hey, it’s about the health, right? I mean, twenty pounds! That’s something! I can be proud of that! So what if none of my old clothes fit! So what if I actually have to buy all new, BIGGER things to fit my twenty pounds lighter self! It’s not about APPEARANCE. It’s about — oh, go fuck yourself, me.

(There’s a video in this post. You don’t see it if you’re reading this in Google Reader. I’m not saying you have to click through, or even that it’s worth a click through. I’m just saying that I want credit for more content than you’re actually seeing. I want you to mentally tally up more content points for me than you would give me if I hadn’t made this note. Thanks.)

I’m doing that tilty hand motion to show I get that it’s iffy.

I was better today, in a small way. You know that space I talked about yesterday, the one that’s there, waiting for me to fill in, waiting for me to look at all of these areas where I can improve and just… go ahead and improve something already?

Well, I did.


I typed a whole big justification for My Baby Is On A Leash And Here Is Why My Baby Is On A Leash Let’s Discuss Our Feelings About My Leashed Baby And Get It All Out In The Open here, but ah, fuck it. I’m not the bridge between the leashers and the leash… nots. You stay on your side of the line, I’ll stay on mine.

I started with boats, and somehow got eggs. Keeheehee.

Every night for the last… I’m actually not sure how many nights. I’ve lost count. That’s a lie. I wasn’t counting. Every night for the last significant while, I’ve gone to bed with the firm intent to be better in the morning, in almost every single area of my life. Seriously. Almost all of them. It’s very tempting right now to try to think of some obscure life area in which I am already perfect, but that feels too hard right now, since I’m really struggling lately with this headache thing – remember when I was in the hospital and accused you of not caring, but I really didn’t carry the joke off well, so it didn’t actually come across at all that I really WAS in the hospital? Yeah, well, it was for a headache thing, and it’s just no good. You don’t have to concern yourself. I mean, a moment of passing concern is fine, because I’m sure you’re a compassionate person on some level, but we don’t really know each other and it’s not a tumor or anything and there’s no real risk to my health, I’m just in a lot of discomfort, and I took one of every pill on the bedside table already tonight, so I can’t really think of anything clever — HEY. Pill taking, completeness of. NAILED IT.

Anyway, two hundred words down, all garbage, starting over. So I’m going to bed with the intent of just doing better at all of it tomorrow, and not in the “go GET ’em, slugger” kind of way, where I’m pep talking myself, but more in the resigned, heavy sigh, tomorrow’s another day, just… try again kind of way. And I wouldn’t even call it best intentions, or even good intentions. Is must intentions a thing? Can you must an intention? I don’t know. I’m not looking that up. I don’t even know how to look that up. I don’t have to look that up. It’s not a thing. You’ve been reading here long enough to know I play kind of fast and loose with whether or not a thing is a thing. That is not an area in which I intend to improve. When a boat needs to be bailed out, we do not paint the trim. Besides, I like the trim. Up yours. Up yours is part of the trim, by the way. Have a seat. Help yourself to snacks. Put your feet up. The water is getting a mite high.

I regret using the sinking ship analogy. It’s too dramatic. I am not a dramatic person. Unless it suits my purposes. It did there, for a minute, but now it doesn’t, so forget that whole thing, except the bit about the trim, because I liked that part.

So, right, going to bed with the must intention of being better in just about every area possible. And it’s just not long at all into that next day before I’m ticking off “not so goods” on my list of areas. I’m super impatient with Penny, I don’t get any laundry done, 3pm comes and I have no dinner plans, “do you want to watch a show” turns into three episodes of the Fresh Beat Band. And, I don’t know, a whole crap load of other stuff I’m not stupid enough to put on the Internet. What am I, new? (I’m not new.) And then the weird thing is, the night rolls around, and I CANNOT UNDERSTAND how these things happened. Especially being impatient with Penny. Because she is sleeping and adorable, and how could I POSSIBLY make an angry face at sleeping adorable Penny? But THEN it is DAYTIME again, and I cannot imagine how I am supposed to NOT be impatient with Penny, because HONEST TO SUPERMAN, if you could see this kid in action.

I’m saving this post for tomorrow.

Okay, it’s tomorrow, and the baby is napping, and I still feel the same way, but I vented it out a little bit on Twitter this morning (summary: it’s a terrible age, they seem like people but they’re just large babies, basically feral with lots of spitting), and I guess I wasted my boner for this blog post. I just feel bad a lot. And it turns out it’s common. There’s just this space between her terrible behavior and my knowledge that look, she’s not even two and being terrible is part of learning how to function as a whole person, and I’m the person she has to be terrible AT. And in that in between space is a whole lot of room for me to act like the worst person ever. And I do. Over and over.

I feel like it’s a lot to explain, yet somehow I crammed it into just a couple of 140 character tweets this morning, and that’s my excuse for not wanting to do it again right now? Honestly, Internet, you should demand better. Hence the theme, right?

It’s like a domino effect of badness, though. When I was in Weight Watchers in high school, back before you could do it online and tell your computer screen, “Oh, I’m wearing heavy earrings today,” like it believes you any more than that lady ever did, the leader had all these annoying sayings that were only annoying because they were so fucking true, like about BLTs – bites, licks, and tastes. All the shit you put in your mouth when you’re making a lunch or cooking dinner, it doesn’t have zero calories, it all counts, and now that I’ve said “BLTs” to you and explained it? Yeah, enjoy the rest of your miserable life, because that’s never leaving your head. And there was this other one that stuck with me. If you’re carrying a dozen eggs and you drop one, you don’t throw the other eleven on the ground. It’s supposed to be an argument against “starting the diet over on Monday” if you have a bad day, or even against starting over in the morning if you have a heavy lunch or whatever. And it makes sense, right? In a really fucking annoying way, because you really want to eat pizza all weekend, because there’s leftovers in the fridge. But it’s in your head, and it makes sense.

BUT LATELY, I swear, even though I go to bed all resigned to carry all my eggs in a more carefully crafted container (we all did that “experiment” in middle school, my egg survived, I’m basically a pro) in the morning, not twenty minutes into the day, not only have I dropped an egg, I’m standing on top of the furniture, flinging eggs at the walls, and then SEEKING OUT MORE DOZENS OF EGGS TO THROW AT OTHER UN-BE-EGGED THINGS.

Have I gone too far into this? I started this post last night and didn’t skim the top before I started up again. I know I started with boats, and now I’m at eggs. I feel like I’ve gone too dire again. I don’t feel like it’s SO dire. I just feel like it’s life. And I feel like maybe I’m focusing too much on Penelope. I mean, she’s the head egg, to be sure. And she’s always the first egg I crack. But this kid, she is BEGGING TO BE AN OMELETTE.

It’s not just her. It’s not. I don’t want you to think I’m just messing up my kid and calling it a day, I’m messing up everything. No, that’s not really true, because that makes it sound like I’m taking an active part. There’s some passive failures, too. But then, the word “failure” is also too much. You know, this whole blog post is just making a lot out of nothing. There’s just a lot of nothing. That’s a good way to put it. There’s a big open space, and that space is an area that is available for me, an area that is open for me to make improvements. And it’s hanging there, empty. There is a LOT OF ROOM for me to work. No one is in my way, nothing is stopping me. Opportunity is there, and I’m not taking it.

Is this making sense? I’m trying to put this in a way that doesn’t make it sound like there’s a dramatic ANYTHING going on over here, because there’s not. There’s life, being lived, not so entirely to my satisfaction, but I’m not sending up flares and asking you to share feelings with me, okay? This is not that blog. I’m just telling you how it’s going, and as is my way, I’m using a lot of words and not getting it done. Look, it’s a metaphor, or whatever. Here’s my blog space, a lot of space, and I’m using it ineffectively to do things wrong and fuck shit up and look, I’m just going to throw my last couple eggs here on the floor. For fuck’s sake. You know what, I’m not deleting any of this. Screw you. IT’S NOT LIKE I’VE MADE IT SEEM WITH ALL THESE WORDS. Just… GUESS at what I’m trying to say.

NaBloPoMo! Another opportunity to throw a bunch of damn eggs onto the damn floor! WHAT HAPPENED TO THE BOAT. I SWEAR THERE WAS A BOAT.

Look, can I just tell you some good things about my kid?

She was a dragon for Halloween.

She is 18 months old now. She needs to be actively engaged just about every second of every day, or she will devise some new way to be evil. Some of them are actually kind of insanely genius, in ways that you just wouldn’t think a kid her age could come up with. Unless you have a kid her age already. In which case, you could have warned me.

She’s doing pretty good with talking. She was a little slow with words for a while, then it just blew up. She’s putting together sentences and will actually hold a mini conversation, if your expectations of conversations aren’t high, and if you’re okay with only talking about what Penelope is interested in. For a week or two, she was picking up one new word every few days, taking a day or two to perfect it, and then sticking it into her little conversations. Then it was a new word a day. Now she’s picking up several new words a day. We stopped counting. A couple of days ago, she found some tights and called them “shoe pants.” I didn’t even know she knew the word pants.

She finally calls me mama, after a really long time of dada being just about the only word she knew. The best part about it is not that she’s stopped calling me dada or just yelling for my attention. She actually still just yells for my attention. No, the best part is that she often calls Phil mama, and she does it specifically because it annoys him. She thinks it’s funny. I think it’s funny, too. I think it’s really funny.

She tries to jump (she learned it from an episode of the Fresh Beats), but can’t, and her failures are hilarious and enjoyable, but not at her expense, because she thinks she is jumping, and loves it. She’s started to take an interest in other kids, and will lean around me and yell, “HI!” at any small size person she sees. We’re going to spend a month in Pennsylvania, just me and her (if anyone has dragged a Marathon car seat on a plane, first hand stories are welcome – and “you don’t need to, you can check it!” is also welcome, but will be politely passed over, because I know that I don’t need to legally, but I do need to sanity-ly, so I am and it’s already decided), and I’m looking forward to her enjoying some play time with her cousins of the same age.

One of the absolutely best things about Penny is how much she loves the video for Put Down the Duckie. She does these deep swinging arm claps, like an aerobics instructor, which is adorable all on its own, but the best thing – the BEST THING – is that she calls Ernie by his laugh. I don’t know how to better explain that. You know how Ernie laughs, right? That keeheehee sound? That’s what she calls him. And that’s how she asks to watch the video. She asks for Ernie, but she doesn’t call him Ernie. She calls him his laugh. And that is how we will survive, for now.