Wednesday, March 29, 2006


D has discovered and read some of my blog. My fault really, for commenting on his post. Not that there's anything I've written that I didn't want him to see. I guess I'm going to have to stop writing about other boys now, though.


Came home yesterday to a message on our answering machine from Eileen, asking Ruth to call her. Our message says "You have reached D, Sue and C. We're not home right now....." No Ruth in that list. Don't people listen?


Why do they do traffic reports in Litchfield County? It's ridiculous. Well, the whole local radio station is too, to be honest. But traffic? On Route 8? Highly doubtful, unless you consider 5 whole cars to be traffic. An hour to get from Stamford to Bridgeport is traffic. And compared to an hour's wait at the George Washington bridge or Lincoln tunnel? Maybe it's all relative.
EDITED TO ADD: I spoke too soon. Apparently, there was a.....HORSE on Route 8 yesterday that caused all kinds of traffic. Police were glad that motorists were patient and didn't HONK their horns and spook the horse.That also warranted being front page news in the newspaper.


It's very hard to be a parent when you want to laugh with your kid. Case in point: we bought a little coat rack to hang lower than our current one, so C could hang up her coat herself. So D gets a pencil and his level to make sure he marks the correct spot, and then goes to get his drill. I was downstairs putting something away, and when I came back, C is drawing on the wall. In pen. Her reason? Because daddy was writing on the wall too.

Monday, March 27, 2006

Five stars?

D has a post up at his place, about how he feels he's been putting in a five star performance at work (and not exactly five stars at home). I started thinking about the last time I felt like I had put in a five star performance at work. Probably hasn't occurred since the second line showed up on the test, oh, about five years ago now.

It's not that I don't want to put in a five star performance at work, but a sustained, five star performance? The first two years of C's life felt like she and I lived at the ped's office. Ear infections, walking pneumonia, hand foot and mouth disease...and a memorable Thanksgiving week right after she turned one where she and I spent the better part of the week sleeping on the chair because she was just so sick (nothing major, but I eventually had to insist on being seen by the ped because she just wasn't kicking that nasty bug on her own). I think for that one I had to also ask D to stay home with her at least the Wed before Thanksgiving, so I could go in to work to just touch base.

Couple that with getting through teething, and the assorted other reasons she wakes up during the night (it's not so bad now, she just wanders into our room and asks to climb in bed)... and I just feel perpetually tired. I'm actually starting this week off feeling tired because she came in bed with us last night and she's a cover hog, plus she kicks and squirms and I have a hard time sleeping with everyone all jammed up against me.

Then we have the working mom guilt....which I should realize is all in my head, but can't help. So I end up taking a day off here and there to spend with her. Then throw in the fact that even though D works one town over, if she needs anything at school, who do they call?

So the days where I would feel like I had really accomplished things at work are few and far between. There've been no complaints, but maybe that's because I'm harder on myself than anyone else, too.

Saturday, March 25, 2006

Laissez le Bon Temps Roulez

With all the drama in my life, sometimes I stop and wonder what would have happened if things were different. About 9 years ago, I was working in CT, and got to go to New Orleans for a business trip. A conference sponsered by Tulane Law, about marine insurance.

Have you ever met someone and just "clicked" instantly? Like you've known each other for years, and are just comfortable right away with them? I was in New Orleans, with some people I work with, and they had set up lunches and dinners with people they did business with. Ok, attorneys (these were claims people, claims usually equals litigation, which means lawyers). We went out for dinner and drinks one night while we were down there, and Tom and I just "clicked". He was a few years older than me, and an attorney from a somewhat prominent family.

We went out drinking on Bourbon St, and just had a great time. Nothing ever happened, but we ended up trading faxes (this was before email became popular!) - he would send me the redneck joke of the day. Nothing serious, just lighthearted stuff (like sending him an inflatable sheep - our minds were really in the gutter).

I was actually going to go to Jazz Fest in New Orleans (which is at the beginning of May) and crash at his house. I had the plane ticket bought already, when I got the job in NYC and decided to accept it and move there. And the rest is history (engaged and married in little over a year from that). But sometimes I wonder what would have happened if I didn't get the job, if I had gone to Jazz Fest.

And yet, why is it when you start to think about the "what might have beens", it's always positive? Who's to say life would be any better than it is now? It seems to me (and maybe it's just me) that I tend to paint this rosy picture of life, overlooking the fact that while I may have some issues currently, there could have been different, or worse issues if I had chosen a different path?

PS. His house did survive Katrina,and I sent another inflatable sheep in case the previous one didn't survive the looting. He's now a partner in a law firm, and I'm on the firm's newsletter email list.

Friday, March 24, 2006

Is it the weekend yet?

Could this Friday (THIS WEEK!) go any slower?????

It should be the weekend already! C'mon, 4:30!!!

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Springtime in CT?

It's freezing! Or maybe it only feels that way because Jan and Feb were so mild. But I am ready for some warmer weather.

C decided she wanted me to bring her to school this morning. Of course, she doesn't decide this until I am almost ready to go downstairs and head out the door. So I tell her to get dressed. Which she does (she's good about getting dressed by herself, and I think it's important she get to make some decisions on her own). She appears at the top of the stairs when I yell that it's time to go wearing: pink tights, purple skirt, a Dora undershirt and a hot pink "wifebeater" tank top. Can you call it a wifebeater if it's pink? I tell her that she needs a long sleeve shirt, it's too cold for that outfit.

5 minutes later, I yell upstairs again. She reappears, wearing essentially the same outfit but with a light pink wifebeater. I just sigh and tell her to get her shoes on, we have to go.

I'm not sure what will get me considered for bad mom of the year - the outfit, or the nutritious breakfast that she had: Ice Age 2 cereal and 5 choclate munchkins.

Monday, March 20, 2006

The Biggest Loser

This workout DVD was referred to on a message board I lurk at (for Disney fanatics. I wouldn't say I'm a fanatic, sometimes they're just funny to read). Anyway, supposedly the workouts are tailored for those who haven't worked out at all, recently, or I ordered it. Only $8.99 on Amazon. com! It came, and I brought it downstairs and promptly kept hitting snooze.

This morning (more like the middle of the night) at 4:30 D calls to say he doesn't think he should drive home. YA THINK? I was supposed to get up and go to work early to pick up C, since there's a meeting scheduled for tonight. So as the alarm was going to go off in 10 minutes anyway, and I was very upset, I got up, dressed and went downstairs and put the DVD in.

WOW. I think I selected the "easy" program - for people who are new to exercise, or haven't exercised consistently in years. That would be me. And it was a humbling experience. Me, who thought nothing of an hour long spinning class, a two mile run or any other athletic event, had a hard time with it. Maybe because the minute the second line appeared on the pregnancy test I stopped exercising consistently? And that was 5 years ago now?

So I kept up as best I could, and felt....good when I was done. My muscles (if there are indeed any left under all the fat) were sore, but a good sore. And the stretching seems to be helping too. Tomorrow I plan to walk on the treadmill, and Wednesday do another 25 minute cardio session.

Best part is, there are 3 levels, so if I do the easy for 6 weeks, and it seems to be too easy, I can move to the high impact and then boot camp. I can't wait.

And the title of this post is ironic. The Biggest Loser DVD = good! D = biggest loser because he is, and I am the biggest loser because I put up with D.

Friday, March 17, 2006

Don't drink the milk, it's spoiled!

I had to pick up C last night (as D was working late, yet again). She and I had a nice night together - we got dinner from the guy who runs a catering place next to her school (I don't know how he makes his eggplant parm, but WOW! Most excellent). I told her we had to take a "scrubby" bath (wash hair and scrub body) and get in our jammied before 7, because there was going to be a show about the Disney boat on tv.

So we cuddled on the chair and watched tv after her bath. Hah. Yeah right. I was on the chair, she was bouncing all over the place.

"I wanna go tomorrow on the Disney ship. Can we go tomorrow on the Disney ship?"

She was so excited to see the pools, and the restuarants and her "club". It's very hard for her to understand we're not going again until January. That there's Easter, and summer vacation, and the start of kindergarten, and Thanksgiving and Christmas before we get to go back. I imagine for a 4 year old it seems like an eternity.

And every so often I pause and think. When I was 4, our vacations were weekend trips to the beach at Gramma's cottage. Or to VT to my aunt and uncle's cabin. Heck, my first cruise (at 37!) was the same as her first cruise! Are we spoiling her?

But I don't understand the rationale of having to wait to do things because I never got to do them when I was her age. I make damn good money, and I like nice things. So when we go on vacation, it's not going to be camping (not that there's anything wrong with that, I just don't like the idea of doing everything outside), it's going to be to a good hotel. She just happens to be along for the ride. If she wants to go camping, she can go camping when she's old enough and/or has her own family.

I know no one reads, but extra credit if you can name the show the title of the post is from.

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Black Velvet Band

So I'm driving to the train this morning (C was in the shower when I left, having agreed to let daddy take her to "school") and realize it's almost St. Patrick's Day. And it's on Friday this year! For one brief moment (remember, it was early) I thought about taking the day off, going to the city to see the parade, and spending some quality time with a pint.

Then I started to recall some St Patrick's Days from long ago. How I'd roll out of bed, dress in jeans and a green shirt, meet my friends at the bagel place across from the college and catch the bus to downtown Burlington for the first shift of drinking. How one year, a bunch of us stepped out of the Blarney Stone briefly to get some food (haha!) and ran through City Hall Park while yelling the words to "The Unicorn".

And I tried to remember the words to some of the songs we used to sing around St. Patrick's Day. There was a great local band, made up of two guys (one who almost graduated from my college!) who were incredibly popular, especially around St. Patrick's Day (and no, it wasn't Phish. Although I can remember seeing homemade paper signs advertising Phish playing at Nectar's towards the end of college. I was surprised when they became as popular as they did. I just thought they were a bar band.)

So I spent some time this morning googling various lyrics to see if I could find some of the old songs. Shhh. Don't tell. I put one CD on my amazon wish list that seemed to have most of the songs I can remember.Then I had to do work.

And as for this St. Patrick's Day? I will get up, get dressed (wearing something green, I imagine) and come to work. D has to work at night, and C's not really into the holiday (even though she is part Irish). Oh well. Maybe in the future we can go into the city to watch the parade.

Sunday, March 12, 2006

Competitive mothering

Really, I do not grasp the concept of competitve mothering. I'm just trying my best, for my kid. I really honestly don't care whether your little Susie is solving quadratic equations or working on world peace with Bono and the Gateses.

What prompted this, you ask? We had to stop at the box office to see D. One of the dance schools in the area is having a recital this spring, and believe it or not, you need tickets. With a 1200 (1400? I can never remember) seat theatre, I wouldn't be worried about the recital being "sold out". Apparently, I am wrong. Not that it would sell out, but that the parents wouldn't get first choice of seats - right up front. So there's a line like this is a rock concert back in the day, and I just waltz up, holding C's hand, trying to find D. You would think I was trying to cut the line. And the mothers were all trying their best to find out if indeed, that's what I was doing.

"oh she's so cute" (meaning C) "how old is she?"

"4" I reply.

"My Susie is only 3 and she's going to be in the dance recital"

"That's nice"....(thinking to myself - those are the ones that get scared on stage and have 'accidents' according to D).

"Where does she take dance lessons?"

"She doesn't. Maybe next year"

"You should get her started early - she'll end up being behind everyone else her age"

"I'll take that under advisement - thanks" and I thankfully spot someone who can get ahold of D for me.

I shouldn't hold these things against the parents. But I have a feeling I'm not going to be making many friends in the PTO or whatever the parent organization is at the school where C will be going to kindergarten. I spent too many years living/ working in NYC - where competitive mothering is more cutthroat. Here in the northwest corner? Strictly amatuer hour compared to that.

Monday, March 06, 2006

It can't be easy

So we're watching the 78th Academy Awards last night. I dunno, it was just kind of blah. Maybe because the only winning movie we've seen was Wallace and Gromit - Curse of the Wererabbit.

But watching the arrivals on the red carpet, I'm struck by the choices of women's shoes. I'm amazed at the gowns, of course, but the shoes! How can you walk in those heels? Maybe because I'm already tall, and if I wore heels I'd be even taller than D (we let him think we're the same height, but sadly, no). Not to mention the fact that my feet are w-i-d-e...think shoe box width. I used to be able to wear the medium width shoes, but after pregnancy and the weight gain (which I can't even blame on pregnancy)....forgeddaboutit. Then add in the fact that the amount of pressure on my feet (I know there's physics involved about weight and it's concentration on the feet and all, but don't ask me. I failed 3rd quarter of physics in high school. I'm lucky I remember about gravity and its everyday applications).

So it amazes me that these women can even walk, what with the tight gowns and jewelry and then the shoes.....I'd be Jennifer Garner. I'd probably be worse, actually. I'd fall flat on my face, for the whole world to see. At least I'd be interesting.

Saturday, March 04, 2006


WARNING: This post is about a feminine product. Guys, you've been warned.

Have you seen those commercials? You know, the ones for Always feminine protection? The tag line is something like "Have a happy period"...

Seriously, every time I see that commercial I have to yell at the tv. Doesn't matter who's with me. Have a happy period? Have a happy period??! Who thinks up these ads? How much do you want to bet it was a conference room filled with guys, and went something like:

"Guys, listen up. We have to come up an ad for Always. Smith, what are you thinking?"

"Gee boss, how about a pretty girl, running through a field of flowers..."

"That's been done before. Jones, what do you have?"

"Well, I'm thinking a girl and her mom.."

"Doesn't anyone have anything original to add?"

Then Doofus pipes up. "Boss, it's not like we have any experience with the product. All I know is once a month, my girlfriend is on the rag, and I don't understand why she can't be happier!"

Murmurs of assent, every guy looking around and as he sees the others agreeing, gets louder, adding his own war story about surviving "that time of month".

"You've hit the nail on the head! Have a happy period. Perfect! Let's go drink some beer, shoot some pool and be men!"

You know it had to be a meeting with only guys involved. What self respecting woman could sit through something like that without saying "Uh guys? You might want to re-think that slogan. Have you ever thought about what it'd be like if once a month you had cramps, were bloated and had a difficult time sleeping? I don't think the choice of feminine protection is going to make it any 'happier'".

*OTR = on the rag. Slang from college.

Who loves ya?

I was moved to tears recently by a couple posts in some blogs I read. It wasn't that the authors were writing about something sad or hurting, it was that they were discussing something that I can't do anymore. I can't call my mom and ask for help.

She died two years ago the end of this month, totally unexpectedly. My dad was supposed to go first. Go ahead, ask him. He'll tell you the same thing. See, both mom and dad smoked cigarettes since they were teenagers. And at different times, we all begged her to quit, especially after my dad got hypnotized and quit smoking. But she couldn't quit, for whatever reason. And one March night, she went to bed and never woke up.

Sometimes it still doesn't seem real. I still dial the same phone number, except she never answers the phone. Dad (or his answering machine) does. I still drive into their driveway and expect to see her sitting outside on the porch (smoking a cigarette).

The hardest part for me, the realization that always makes me cry, is that she's not getting to see C grow up. She's missed almost half of C's life already. And C doesn't remember her, not really. I put a picture of her reading to C in C's room, but I can tell C doesn't remember.

And while she was a great mom, she was an even better grandma. She would get down in the driveway and draw with chalk with my neices, she would draw faces on her toes ("toe people") and make them "work" in the McDonald's play set, and she would always read the same story over and over...That last Christmas, she got three pre-made gingerbread houses and had C and my two nieces over to decorate them.

And what really sticks out in my mind? I remember when C was born, it was close to midnight on a Thursday. So they kicked us out of the hospital Saturday afternoon. Mom and Dad came down to visit us (we were living in Danbury at the time) on Monday, and I just remember that on Tuesday night the baby blues hit. I called her, and when she said hello I burst into tears. She immediately asked if I wanted her to come back, what could she do, etc etc. Just knowing she was there for me made me feel better.

I wish I could have her back just for one day to tell her how much I appreciate everything she's done for me. Even back when I was being a completely ungrateful teenage brat.

Friday, March 03, 2006

Mea Culpa

The snow yesterday? My fault. As I was driving home earlier this week, I was thinking about how even though this winter has had some terrific snowstorms, I hadn't had any 2 plus hour commutes from the train to home (last year there were several). I didn't think anything of it, seeing as the calendar has turned to March and we can see the light at the end of the winter tunnel.

But yeah. Apparently I thought too soon, since yesterday's commute home was a winner. I left work early (I had gotten to work early too, since I was supposed to pick up C last night) - the 2:51 train early. The snow had been coming down since about 9 am in Stamford, but had changed to a sleet/freezing rain mix after lunchtime. Trains were still running on time, and I thought I was being smart by leaving ahead of the rush.

Leaving Bridgeport was ok - a little slower than normal but nothing that would cause any great harm....until I got on the took me 45 minutes to go 10 miles.
And, believe it or not, I actually prefer driving when everyone is in a pack - no one tries to do anything stupid like pass. Eventually the log jam cleared, and once north of Waterbury, observed many spin outs....But I did make it to C and we got home ok.

So, sorry for anyone who had a rough commute last night. Like I said, my fault.