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Wednesday, January 14, 2015

31 Thoughts I Have While Walking Into Work in 0 Degree Temperatures

If you read my blog enough, you know the parking situation at work stinks. There is no way around the fact that I have to park out in the middle of nowhere and walk 500 miles to reach my office.  I may also mention that I live in a place where it is cold 50% of the time.  This was my thought process this morning.

1. Who are these people that get better parking spots than me? They must wake up at 3 in the morning because there are never any parking spots left, unless you park on an end cap, but people who do that  just look like jack asses and other people are secretly hoping thier car gets hit.

2. Even though it said it was 0 degrees outside it doesn't feel that bad actually.  Apparently this North Face full length coat really is chill proof.

3.Oh my God, I don't think I have ever been this cold in my entire life.

4. I'm really glad I splurged and got these $200 snow boots, at least my feet are warm.

5. Out of all the places my parents could choose to live, why in the world did they choose South Bend?  It is colder than Chicago, but people feel sorry for Chicagoans because it is the "Windy City". Those  people have never been to South Bend in January.

6. It really is cruel joke that my parents relocate to Arizona 5 months out of the year.

7. Who convinced me to move from California back to this ice box?  Oh that's right, my husband. I'm going to add that to my list of things to bring up the next time we get into a fight about the dishwasher.

8. My face seriously feels numb. I need to go into a building and see if my nose is black. I think I may have frost bite.  I'm going to have to have my nose cut off.

9. Would it be in poor taste to hitch hike 50 feet?

10. Look at this idiot in just a wind breaker and khaki's.  Who is he trying to impress? Not me.  How is he not freezing to death?

11. I'm Scottish and Irish, shouldn't my people's body type be acclimated to cold temperatures?

12. I bet I was adopted. I have always felt a strong pull towards Mexican culture. I love Mexican food. And margaritas. That must be why I cannot stand cold temperatures. My bloodline needs warmth.

13. Maybe the reason I'm so cold is because I have such a low percentage of body fat?  But if my body fat was so low, wouldn't I look better naked?

14.  I need to schedule an appointment for a bikini wax.

15. Nevermind, that is just stupid.

16, What do we have here? A die-hard woman jogging towards me.  Really, on the coldest morning of the year? Treadmills are everywhere.  I guess my body fat theory is BS because clearly she doesn't have any and is wearing half the amount of clothes as I am.

17. When I was in fourth grade I entered an invention contest and it was an electric coat. Like an electric blanket, but it was a coat. I didn't win. I should have. I should revisit that and take it to Shark Tank.

18. Mr. Wonderful would totally invest in my company.  Then I could quit my job and move to Mexico.  But it wouldn't make sense to own an electric blanket coat company and live in a tropical climate.  Plus I would need to know Spanish.

19. Maybe I will make one just for myself.

20.  Why in the world did settlers decide to stop in this ridiculously cold environment? Maybe they found it in the summer and by the time Fall hit, it was too late, they had already colonized, built the house and tilled the field.

21. We should have soup for dinner.

22. My $200 boots just came untied.  I can't stop. The cold air is creeping in my boots and hitting my toes.  Do I take my mittens off and risk losing a finger to tie them, or do I keep them untied and risk losing a toe?  I really need my fingers to type and text. I guess it's my toes.  If I can't walk, then I may be able to convince someone to get me a heated golf cart to ride in with all the other people who wear suits to work.

23. Should I walk faster?  Nope. The wind hits my face harder.

24. I can't feel my lips.

25.  How is it that I am only half way?

26. Is that a squirrel!?  Shouldn't he be hibernating? Maybe he lost his family to frostbite and he is searching high and low for a new one.

27. I can finally see my building.  I need to go to the bathroom right away because I'm pretty sure my mascara has left skid marks on my face.

28. I wish they made flannel underwear and bras.  I wouldn't hesitate wear those and not care about visible panty lines.

29. My building is so close... yet so far away.

30. I can almost feel the warmth. Once I am in my office, I am going to drink my coffee and I am not going to leave until 5:00 p.m.  By that time my feet should have returned to normal temperature.

31. Crap, I left my coffee in my car.

Monday, January 12, 2015

Out of Control

Dear Lord help me get through this winter.

We have a one handed glove thief that sneaks into our house every night and takes one glove or mitten from a matching set.  I have a sneaking suspicion he has one footed partner too, who steals socks.  Even with the best intentions,  I lay out the boys snow gear every night but without fail somebody is missing something.  Within a month of looking everywhere we will give our unmatched gloves to Goodwill where we will make a one handed child somewhere very happy.

Not to sound old, but back in my day, I had one pair of freezy freaky gloves.  I can still see them, smell them even. They changed color when they got cold to expose a castle and bunnies. If they still fit I would wear them to this day.  I didn't lose those.  If I did I would have had to deal with cold fingers.  And if I'm going to go down this path, I also had a snowsuit, which eliminated the chance of forgetting my snow pants at school, because if I did, I would have also left my coat.  And even as ditzy as I was at times would have never done that.

This morning despite having 4 days off of school, we were not prepared to leave the house.  I had everything laid out like usual but unless I am waiving things in front of their faces they don't see it.   When we finally got out the door we did a u-turn because Fin forgot his violin (which was sitting next to the door), and apparently U turns cause Oscar's bladder to overflow and said he had a potty emergency. Which if we were lucky would only take 4 hours.

By the time were really on the road I was heading down a packed side street where cars park on either side. Naturally a school bus decided to make a turn, not allowing me by which left us dead locked facing each other.  I was there first, and there was nowhere for me to go.  But bus #269 of the South Bend School Corporation decided to sit there.  I flashed my lights, honked my horn without any reaction from the woman who drives bus #269.  I lost all control of my body and mind and found myself outside of my car motioning to the woman to get the F out of my way.

Parker was mortified.  I didn't care. I was doing what looked like an interpretive dance to get her to move.  She didn't.  I ended up backing up all the way to another street so she could get by. And as she passed she didn't even look at me.  I tried as hard as I could, but the boys got to see their mother freak out, and when I get really angry I cry.

A stupid game of school bus chicken which I sadly lost, was enough to push me over the edge.  The rest of the car ride was silent.

I wasn't just crying because I was out of my mind pissed off. I was crying because I couldn't change or control the situation.  Looking back, I'm actually glad it was a bus, because if it had been a car the other person may have gotten out of their car and the boys would have witnessed something worse. Like their mother getting the crap beat out of her. I guess that is where a higher power was looking out for me, and probably finding this very amusing.

Do busses have dash cams? I certainly hope not. This was not a high point in my commute.  Not only did I put on quite a performance for the unamused bus driver, but also all the kids who were in the bus.  All of which, Parker is sure are all in 6th grade and he knows, and they all saw me and now he is humiliated.

Control is something I don't easily like to lose.  I don't like to drink around people I don't trust for the fear I may say something offensive unintentionally. Or hug someone too long, or tell someone I love them too much.  But if control means that I'm censoring myself, then what is wrong with letting some of that go once in awhile?  I don't know, that is why I'm asking.

What I do know, is that a control freak should not have children and expect to continue their life as a control freak.  It is not possible.  You have to resign to being a supervision freak. Where you can watch the things you want to happen,  or not happen. Or happen in a way that you do not want them to happen.

There is little I can actually control. I can't control how other people feel about me, or what happens to the people I love most. I can't control my husband or children and obviously I can't control my emotions at times.

So for the time being I have accepted the fact that I am out of control.


Tuesday, January 6, 2015

2 positives for every negative.

Personally, I don't like making resolutions. I tend to make ridiculously easy ones, so that I succeed, making myself feel better about something that I already do or have been doing for my entire life.
Kids will call you out though.   This year I wanted to include them to set goals for themselves and hold themselves accountable.  As we ate Chinese take out for dinner we went around the table sharing.

11 year old: I want to eat like an athlete, so my body will be a machine. (As he is biting into an egg roll.)
10 year old: To eat every sample at Costco twice and if they ask, I'll tell them it was my twin. (Aim high buddy.)
7 year old: I want to make a lego tower as tall as our house.  (I truly believe this is possible. In fact, make a replica of our house and we can store all the legos you already have.)
4 year old: Cookie.  (I'm pretty sure he missed the point of resolutions and was just saying what he wanted.)
Don:. To get more organized. Which is a really great goal and I support him 100% just like I have been for the past 13 years. Maybe this will be the year. 

When it got around to me, I said that I wanted to exercise and eat right. But this time when I spoke, the clouds opened up and I was actually heard. They called me out saying I do that anyway. It's true, for the most part.   They suggested that I do something challenging, like give up Starbucks or wine. I explained that I could only do that if I wasn't a mom with four sons, and there's no going back now.

I decided to think about it and told them I would let them know.  By that time the conversation had moved on to dessert, and nobody seemed to notice that I was eating my second cookie. (So much for eating right).
I decided to fold laundry in our bedroom and I passed the hallway mirror. This time my reflection caught my eye and it appeared that within 10 days of Christmas break I had gained a pound every day.  I turned to the side, turned to the other side, looked at my butt, looked at my gut and gave out a ick sound.

When I turned around all four of them were looking at me.

I was so embarrassed.  These boys have seen me at my worst. The. 3a.m. dragon breath tucking them back into bed mommy. The just home from a sweaty workout mommy.  The sick with bags under my eyes mommy. The bloated after just giving birth mommy. Yet, in every single picture they have drawn of me, I have big eye lashes, pink smiling lips and yellow hair.

Nothing sounds ugly about her that at all.

It reminds me of a photo my dad took of me when I was 7. I was standing in the back yard smelling a flower.  And by smell, I mean that it looked like I was trying to stick the flower up my nose. It is zoomed in and you can see the dirt under my nails,  and my wispy hair flying all over the place.  I always wondered what my parents liked about that photo. Just like the boys, they saw beauty in the imperfection, that I just couldn't.

Girls may be different, but not a single one of my sons has ever looked in the mirror and thought "eew".  When I tell them they look cute they usually say "I know".  They have the ability to overlook Nutella that has been stuck to their chin since breakfast.  Of course they are all adorable in my eyes, and they accept their appearance the way it is and are happy with it.

I can't imagine them saying the things that come out of my mouth when looking at their own reflection, and if I did, it would crush me.  In my eyes they are impossibly perfect, scars, Nutella and all.

Oscar asked me why I said "ick". Instead of  telling him the truth, I said I had cookie crumbs on my mouth.  "That's not icky" he said.  Come to think of it, nothing grossing these boys out.  I could have said I had a tick in my head and they would have thought it was cool.

I decided that I was going to spend this year trying to see myself as the boys do. Focusing on the beauty they see, that I seem to overlook on a daily basis.  Nothing is wrong with acknowledging what makes you beautiful, as hard as it may be.

I'm going to make an effort for every negative thing I come up with to counter it with two positives.  Since I don't want to spend the year staring in the mirror, I may stop the negative after awhile. I mean seriously, it is 2015, if the things I have been wishing looked different haven't by now, I might as well embrace my uniqueness right?

If I can find the beauty of everyone around me, I should be able to do the same for myself.

Here is to a beautiful 2015!