Dear Santa…

Dear Santa,

First of all, I just want to tell you how proud I am of you. Not only do you survive this crazy holiday every year, but you hand deliver every single toy to all the believers out there. I know it must be hard to keep up with the demand and all these new complicated video games and tablets. It must have taken you forever to learn how to assemble all these games with the chips and the 3-D and the gigas and the bytes. Whatever happened to the good old wooden rocking horse? I know. I feel the same way. I must say, you’ve adapted wonderfully and all while rocking the same red suit. Kudos to you!

Anyway, you must be confused as to why a grown ass (OMG! I’m soooo sorry for cursing) woman is sending you a letter. Well, the truth is, I have lost all hope and was hoping you could restore it for me. You see, the other day I asked my husband what he wanted for Christmas and he said he didn’t want anything (bless his heart). However, I think he was expecting the same answer from me. That didn’t happen of course, because I want lots of things. Now, don’t think I’m being selfish or anything; I’m actually the complete opposite of that. I always put everyone’s needs before mine and only expect to get rewarded at the end of the year. Never mind, that does sound really selfish. Let me rephrase that. I think I deserve to get everything on my list because I take care of my family without asking for anything back except hugs, kisses and the occasional compliment here and there.  So when I showed my husband the list, he laughed uncontrollably and walked away. And this is when all my hope went down the drain.

So this is where you come in, Santa. I’m sending you this list in hopes I wake up on Christmas morning and find that not only my daughters’ wishes came true, but also mine.

santa

It’s not that long Santa, just wait until you see my daughters’.

1 – Endless supply of toilet paper – Santa, do you know that I am buying a 24-pack of toilet paper on a weekly basis? I mean, I know there are more girls than boys in the house and that we have more…err…”stuff” to keep clean, but come on!! I’m starting to believe my daughters are trading toilet paper rolls for candy. It’s no coincidence that I keep finding more candy and less toilet paper around the house. So if you give me an endless supply of TP it would mean fewer trips to the store, which means I would have to drive less, which means less pollution to the environment. So really, it’s a win-win situation.

Actually, while you’re at it, can you add a couple of nanny cams? I’m going to catch the little suckers!

2 – 30 hour days – Not to get more done. No. I need 30 hour days in order to squeeze in a few more hours of sleep. Don’t you just feel like punching people that only need 4 or 5 hours of sleep and yet they still wake up radiant and full of energy? Probably not, ’cause you’re Santa and you’re perfect and fluffy. But I do! Sorry about all the aggressiveness, it’s the lack of sleep. If I get more hours of sleep, I’ll probably wake up singing “It’s a beautiful morning” and make pancakes for the whole building. Again, a win-win situation.

3 – The ability to cook – I’ll just get straight to the point. I have tried to learn and have failed miserably. So this is why I need you.  I need to be able to make a grilled cheese sandwich without this happening:

IMG_9300

Who feeds their children plastic? Me.

 

 

 

 

 

Or cook a simple pasta dish without burning it like this:

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I seriously give up.

 

 

 

 

 

 

This is pathetic and I need you to fix it please.

4 – The power to transform into Martha Stewart or at least suck all the talent out of her: I for once would like to be able to sew my daughter’s Girl Scout badges on her vest and not run like a little girl to my mom asking her for help. Anything that requires sewing, I will staple. Anything that asks for frosting, I will buy pre-made. Anything that involves paint will end up on the carpet and up my nose. All I want is to be skillful enough to redecorate my living room by only using a wooden crate, paint and tape. I’m sure Martha can do it.

5 – 24 hour concierge service: I know some buildings do have it, but I’m neither rich nor live in NYC.  So what if sometimes I crave ice-cream at 2 in the morning? Or forget to buy more juice boxes for my daughter’s lunch box. I don’t want to leave the house at 6 pm. That’s so late for this old body. I need someone to go fetch me stuff at a moments notice and my husband has already said no.

6 – Healthy junk food – Santa please, I beg of you!! Not everything healthy has to be boring. I need junk food in my life but I need it to be healthy because I hate the gym and I can’t stop eating cheeseburgers from the mall and my waist is paying for it. Also candy and carbs. No matter how much I eat them, I need you to make all this stuff super extra healthy because I have no plans of stopping.

That’s it Santa, I only want these 6 things. After all, my parents taught me not to be greedy.

Sincerely,

Me :)

 

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my daughter pinocchio

I’ve realized that my 4-year-old daughter will either be the greatest story-teller ever or the next Pinocchio, because this child of mine sure can lie.

The other day I walked into their room and couldn’t even get pass the mountain of toys that was blocking my way. There was so much stuff lying around, I needed a GPS just to get to their closet. So I asked them to clean it up. After about 20 minutes of nagging and trying to convince me that they had better things to do like staple papers together, my patience was running its limit, so I did the next best thing and offered them money.

My favorite one that day oldest one, being the smart cookie that she is, took the money and started cleaning up.  The youngest one, well, she had a very reasonable explanation about why she shouldn’t clean up.

“I shouldn’t be the one cleaning the room because I didn’t make that mess!”

“You didn’t make the mess? Really? So if it wasn’t you, who did it?”

“Ok, I’ll tell you, this is what happened, for real. You see, last night when the whole house was sleeping a black tornado came in the house and picked up all the toys and just THREW THEM ALL OVER THE PLACE! It made such a mess mami, but that’s why the room is so messy.” 

“A tornado came in the house and only messed up your room?”

“Yeah, I don’t think tornadoes like toys.”

” Tornadoes are very loud, how come I didn’t wake up?”

“It was a black tornado for real. FOR. REAL!!! You see, I tried to wake you and papi and Antonella up, but everyone was sleeping really hard, sooooo I went outside and took the broom and pushed the tornado out the window!”

Let me just add that her face was dead serious. Not one smile.

“Did you really do that? You must be very strong because tornadoes are very powerful.”

“I am strong because I eat ALL my veggies.”

No she doesn’t. Not even one.

“So who’s going to help your sister clean the toys?”

“I don’t know…” She turns and walks away, stops, turns around, hand on hip and says, “…AND YOU ARE WELCOME!”

***

One day, I saw that her shirt had a big cut on the front. I knew it had been her because I’d already caught her trying to cut her hair. So I asked what happened to her shirt and this was her incredibly, believable explanation:

“It was Hello Kitty, she cut my shirt.”

“Hello Kitty? As in the doll?

“Oh no mami, don’t be silly! Dolls can’t move! My FRIEND Hello Kitty! Duh!”  Insert eye roll.

“You have a friend named Hello Kitty? Really?”

She does not. Obviously. What kind of parents would name their kid Hello Kitty?

“Yeah. FOR. REAL!!! You’ve never seen her before, but she’s not my imaginary friend. You’ve just never seen her. And she totally cut my shirt.”

As she walks away with the scissors still in her hand.

***

 At dinner:

“Itala, please eat all your food.” 

“I really can’t mami.”

“Why can’t you eat your fish?”

“Because it didn’t qualify.”

“It didn’t qualify? Qualify for what?”

“It didn’t qualify to be eaten today, so I really can’t.”

 

I can’t make this stuff up.

Pinocchio-Girl--31433

ay ay ay

 

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because I complain a lot! 11 things I’m grateful for

The other day I found myself complaining about how tired I was of having to carry the groceries up the stairs in my building. Then, I complained about all the toys that were blocking my way in. Then I complained about how long it took for the water to get warm while my daughter stood freezing next to me. After that, I complained about how foggy the mirror was and I couldn’t see myself clearly (No, I did not complain about that because I keep all my  mirrors spotless so I can always look at my beautiful face). And then it hit me: I complain about everything! I complain about this and I complain about that, without even realizing that I have everything I need. I have money to buy food, stairs that take me up to my heated home, water that magically appears with just the turn of the knob.

All this complaining is making me grumpier than what I usually am. So I decided then and there that every time I complain about something (because who am I kidding, I’ll probably never stop), I’m going to think about at least one thing to be grateful for, like dry shampoo for example, because no one really has time to wash their hair that often.

I ran to tell my husband all about it, but I had to run back to the bathroom and wrap my daughter up in a towel so she wouldn’t freeze. So then I ran back, but then ran back to the bathroom to turn off the running water, seriously people, let’s not waste it. I ran back one more time, but then ran back to the bathroom because my daughter kept screaming that I had wrapped her too tight, fallen on the floor and was wiggling like a worm.

When I finally got to him (sweating and out of breath because clearly I don’t work out at all) and shared with him this life changing epiphany, he looks up and says, “REALLY???” Sarcasm. He owns it.

So I have made myself this list of things to be grateful for that I will be putting up on my refrigerator door to look at every time I lose my sh*t. I was going to wait until November to post this, because you know, Thanksgiving and stuff, but why wait? I’ll just beat everyone to the punch and post this in October.

11 Things I’m Grateful For

My daughters – Not only they’re the sweetest, smartest, best smelling little girls I know (yes, I smell them and they smell like marshmallows and puffy clouds mixed together. No you may not smell them), but they are the source of my never-ending mood swings. I appreciate that because every time they make me angry, they also make me infinitely happy. They make me yell, but they also make me laugh uncontrollably.  They make me question my intelligence every time they ask a question like, “what is a mammal and what’s the difference between them and reptiles?” To what I answer “welllll…..mammals have hairs….I think….oh look, your show is on!” But they also make me smarter because I’ve never googled so much crap as I’ve done in the past 7 years.

My husband – Because I am a moody bitch that never uses the corresponding face with the corresponding emotion and some how he still loves me.

Coffee – The reason I am not currently serving time for murder.  Ok, so maybe I won’t kill you if you talk to me before the caffeine takes over my body, but I will probably attack you.  Thank you coffee for keeping alive all the people I love.

Friends –   Because my husband will never give me an honest answer when I ask him what he thinks about an outfit, or if I still look pretty with these few extra pounds. I don’t know if he’s being sweet or just plain scared. Either way, he’s no good. So that’s when your friends step in. To tell you that outfit looks hideous and that you’re better off just burning it instead of not wearing it.

Chocolate – No need to explain myself. Chocolate.

24 hour healthcare – You know that if your child is going to get sick, it’s going to be in the middle of the night. No way for them to start throwing up a storm, say, I don’t know, 10 a.m.? 2 p.m.?  Any time between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. would be great kids. Please and thank you.  Nobody wants to leave the house at 2 in the morning when it’s 25 degrees outside (oh yes, it has happened), especially your Caribbean born parents. So thank you, 24 hour urgent care places. We’re all too familiar with you and we hope not to visit you again this winter.

Ancient Persian Riders – Who are they you might ask? They are the geniuses behind high heel shoes, or so says Wikipedia, and of course I trust the Wiki people because they are highly reliable. Having an impressive height of 5-ft tall, you can usually see me wearing high heels, wedges and anything that can lift me off the floor at least one inch, because I am damn tired of having to climb over anything (and that includes people) in order to reach the adult cereal boxes at the store.

Carbs –   Even though there’s an evil hidden in all of them, they are my faithful companion during the long, cold winter days; during my grumpy days; and pretty much during any other day of the year.  Forget ice cream pints or shots of tequila. Nothing makes me feel better than a bowl of white rice (yes, I said white, calm down) or any bread, potato, or anything starchy for that matter. One time a guy broke up with me (the nerve!) and instead of drowning my sorrows in a bottle of vodka, I ate a whole pot of rice.

Razors – No one wants a grizzly bear walking around, and shaving my legs with my husband’s internationally acclaimed, super expensive, extra shiny, professional chef’s knife is a big no-no, and also gross.

‘N Sync – Greatest boy band ever. Do not discuss with me, in my mind they’re still together. Remember that time that guy broke up with me and I cried over a pot of white rice? I was listening to Bye Bye Bye because I don’t wanna be a fool for you, just another player in your game for two…

And finally, let us join our hands together and be grateful for David Beckham’s existence.

 

image via etsy.com

image via etsy.com

What are you grateful for?  If you say sour gummy worms I will love you forever.

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I am a wise one I tell you!

A few posts back I wrote about this to-do list I started the day I found out I was pregnant with my first baby. It’s basically a list of things I needed to learn before she was born and obviously still haven’t because postponing everything is how I roll.

What I didn’t tell you though, is all the things I’ve learned that have made me the Master Mother Sensei that I am today. Not really, but it sounds bad ass so just humor me.

I think I read a few pages each of all the parenting books I bought while pregnant. I stopped reading them when I figured out my obgyn was giving me the Cliff Notes version on every appointment, and frankly, I preferred to spend as much time sleeping since everyone kept drilling into my head that once you have a baby you will never ever in a million years even when they get married and leave the house sleep again. This is in fact….a fact.

I’ve somehow managed to become an expert on a few areas and I would love to spread my wisdom. Please take note, this is very important:

POOP 

Everything I know is based on usually chaotic experiences, things that just suddenly happened, followed by frantic online searches (don’t ever do that) and calls to the pediatrician, only to have her tell me it’s all perfectly normal and that I should have really read the books. Case in point, the day my daughter proudly showed me the neon green poop she had just left in the potty. One panicky Google search later, and I quickly learned that she was either slowly turning into an alien or that artificial coloring does exactly that, artificially colors your baby’s poop. Damn you Lucky Charms.  7 years later I am the poop expert in my house. One quick look and I can tell you what they had for dinner the night before. My parents are very proud.

TOYS

I’m also, of course, a toy connoisseur.  I have spent my fair share of time playing with ALL OF THEM, so I know for a fact that Ken is gay and he might be having an affair with some other Ken dude that never has his pants on. I’m surprised Barbie still dates him, she seems to be a smart girl judging from all the jobs she currently has (Vet, Hairstylist, Mom, Teacher, Park Ranger and everything in between), but she just can’t get a clue that her boyfriend has better clothes than her and is constantly hanging around another blondie with a mad six-pack. Barbie, break up with him, but still keep him around. Trust me, they throw the best parties ever and they make the best friends a girl (or anyone for that matter) could ask for.

Ken, tell Barbie the truth and then come find me, we can totally be bff’s. image via dailybest.it

Hungry Hippos are just that, 4 starving hippos that never seem to get full because this mind numbing game never ends.

Mickey and Minnie are way overrated and have been collecting dust on the top shelf.

Monster High dolls have freakishly long legs and skinny torsos and they dress like ‘women of the night’, because calling them whores would be a little mean, after all, they are teenagers.

Hello Kitty will forever be a cat, no matter who says otherwise.  I will not let you crush my childhood.

Cabbage Patch Kids are still around, and guess what? They still have the same awesome smell they did before. Don’t pretend you never smelled them.

All this vast knowledge I have on toys is obviously because I’ve purchased them all for my daughters, which brings me to my next point of expertise…finance.

FINANCE

I learned this summer that once your daughters find out there is an American Girl store in your area, you might as well just kiss your 401k good-bye and walk inside because they will stop at nothing until they get one. That means cleaning their rooms and eating Brussels sprouts.

They have also been collecting these little dolls called Mini Lalaloopsy for about 4 years now.  Each one of them comes with their own personality (some very questionable), a pet (of course) and one million accessories (why not?). They cost around $7.99 each, multiply that by 91, add to that 2 American Girl dolls plus whatever accessories and outfits they’re going to want, at least 3 yearly shopping trips to the mall because they never stop growing, plus lots and lots of grocery shopping and you have what I like to call a one way ticket to bankruptcy city.

Bye, bye my loves :(

Bye, bye my loves :(

 

Hibernation 

It usually takes me getting ready to go out with my hubby in order for either one of my daughters, if not both, to suddenly, out of the blue, get sick. Not before, when I’m still lounging around in my yoga pants. No. They wait until I have brushed my hair, put on make-up (concealer and strawberry chap stick), squeeze into my skinny jeans and break out the stilettos for them to throw up out of nowhere.

If we do manage to slip away for a quick bite or even, wait for it….a movie, we will undoubtedly get a call from grandma saying that they’re either coughing too much or have a horrible, horrible tummy ache. And of course, because I’m as paranoid as it gets and must rush to their sides every time they say “ouch”, by the time we get there, whatever “ouchy” they had magically disappears.

So now I keep the house stacked with medicine, snacks, unread magazines, movies for the young and old and loads of toys, because I’ve become quite an expert hibernator, not that I mind now that the weather is starting to suck again.

And there you have it! 4 things I’m really good at. Next time I’ll talk about child psychology or something more profound that doesn’t involve poop.

 

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I’m just not ready

My youngest princess-ninja just turned 4 and I was not ready for it. Just the other day I was changing her diapers and today she’s asking me for privacy every time she needs to go potty.

I’m not ready to send her off to kindergarten, even though that’s 1 year away, but in mommy time it’s really 5 minutes.

I’m not ready for her to stop wanting to sleep in our bed, even though she has made a permanent dent on my ribs.

I’m not ready for her to stop playing Barbies and babies, even though I get on her nerves every time we play because I just can’t get their voices and accents right (obviously, they all come from different islands, each with their own exotic accent, and it’s not enough for her that I already speak with one).

I’m not ready for her to start being more independent, even though I try to teach her to be and secretly love that she won’t leave my side even when I’m in the bathroom.

I’m not ready for her to give up her tantrums, even though it makes the vein in my forehead want to pop, because I know that all she wants is my attention.

I’m not ready for her to start talking like a big kid, even though sometimes I don’t understand half of what she says, mainly because I don’t know if she’s speaking english, spanish or spanglish, but I’m pretty sure she makes up her own words most of the time.

So I sat down with her and tried to reach some sort of agreement.

I tried to convince her to stop growing so fast, because sooner rather than later she’ll be as tall as me and is going to take my clothes without my permission, but I’m really just not ready to stop shopping at The Children’s Place. And her response was:

“Well, then stop feeding me veggies and give me more candy.”

I asked her nicely to never, ever stop talking like a baby because it’s just so damn cute. And her response was:

“Can I PLEASE then stop going to school?”

I politely asked her if it was ok for us to pretend she was turning 2 instead of 4. And her response was:

“Don’t worry mami, I’ll still love you even when I’m 4. I’ll even love you when I turn 148.”

I tried to persuade her into choosing the nearest college so that she would never have to leave the house. I even went as low as telling her that I don’t ever go anywhere without her, so she should never go anywhere without me. And her response was:

“The reason you don’t go anywhere without me is because you have no social life.”

Ok, so I made the last one up, but it wouldn’t surprise me if she does say that when she understands what having a social life means.

Clearly, I was getting nowhere with this kid. So I did what every other mom in my predicament would do. I got pregnant. No, not really, I just went out and bought her a toy baby, because that’s what babies play with.

Isn't she a beauty?

Isn’t she a beauty?

 

 

 

what I really wanted to say was…

If you’re on the have a baby, they said blog bandwagon, you’re awesome and also hopefully read my last post on the eternal road trip I had to endure to get to my brother’s wedding in Indiana.  If you’re not on said bandwagon, I’m not going to judge you, but seriously, get on it. And if you’d rather read the newspaper, a book, or the back of a cereal box for that matter than to read my endless, pointless rants, well then you my friend, are one smart cookie.

Anyway, my brother and his wife decided to celebrate their elopement by throwing a pretty amazing party at her parent’s house, which by the way, it’s the most beautiful house I’ve ever seen and Scarlett O’Hara would be totally jealous.

When I got a call from him a couple of months ago telling me about the celebration, my big mouth asked him if he wanted me to say something at the party. He was VERY excited. I would do that for him any day of the week, don’t get me wrong, but the fact that I don’t get drunk anymore (because I’m lame) and would have to do it sober in front of 150 people was giving me panic attacks.

How could I get out of it? I couldn’t, he’s my brother and I had promised him, and then he would not teach my daughter how to swim like I was planning.  Damn it. The sacrifices you make for your children.

Of course, two months pass by and I didn’t write a word because procrastination runs my life. Actually, scratch that, I did write down a few ideas of what I wanted to talk about, but never really got around to putting together a coherent paragraph, not even a sentence. In my mind though, I had the perfect speech, people would fall off their seats laughing and the bride’s parents would fall in love with me, adopt me and offer me a room in their Gone with the Wind house.

I planned on writing it when I got to the hotel the night before, but after an 11 ½ hour road trip, 8 of which were spent watching 2 of my kid’s movies on repeat, I was beat, I couldn’t feel my legs and my brain was fried. So the morning after was my last chance, but then I realized I had left both my daughter’s sweaters at home and hello target! 2 hours later I was back at the hotel getting ready to write and procrastination happened…again.

Fast forward to that night and the bride’s dad gave the best speech ever. In Spanish! I don’t even think he speaks Spanish, he even had his own personal translator (my brother).  People laughed, people cried, how could I ever top that? At least I looked pretty (I hope).

Time for my speech, I was handed the microphone in what seemed to be slow motion, I take it and say:

“I’m not drunk enough to do this.”

Those were the words I chose to introduce myself to my brother’s new family. Not good evening, not Hello, my name is Linda and I’m the groom’s not alcoholic sister. Nothing.

I start to ramble, of course, and then both my daughters decide to stand by me while I disgraced my family join me and mid speech literally grab the microphone from me and start to display their multiple talents, which completely threw me off my train of thought, not that I had one to begin with. I don’t remember much of what I said after that, but it must have been amazing because ONE person laughed.

When it was finally over (again, I would do it over and over. I know you’re reading. I love you.), I sat down and realized I didn’t say what I really wanted to say. I really just wanted to give them both some marriage advice, because being married 9 years obviously makes me an expert.

I wanted to tell her that as soon as they say I DO, men develop a serious case of Selective Hearing. Even when they say they heard you, they didn’t. Whatever it is you want or need, you better get it in writing.

I wanted to tell him that no matter how many times we say nothing is wrong, something is wrong. And you better figure it out and fix it. Fast.

I wanted to tell her that you should praise him every time he completes a chore, like doing laundry or cooking (yes, for some of us, cooking becomes a tedious chore). Give him a kiss or a high-five, whatever you choose. Kinda like giving a puppy a snack when you’re training them.  Get what I’m trying to say here?

I wanted to tell him that he better think twice before asking her if she really needs another pair of shoes.  We ALWAYS need another pair of shoes, as well as boots, jeans or any other item of clothing. Just don’t ever go there.

I wanted to tell her to run as fast as she can every time he gets sick. Because a sick man is like having 6 sick toddlers and 8 teething babies together at the same time. Hire a nurse or call his mother, just run. I’m just kidding, please take care of my brother.

I wanted to tell them both to choose their battles carefully.  Sometimes the dumbest things can start a massive outrage. Remember what happened when The War of the Worlds was narrated on the radio way back when? Same thing can happen if you leave the toilet seat up or you forget to put the leftovers in the fridge (I forget all the time, no worries).

And finally, I wanted to tell you both that you are now part of an equal relationship, neither of you should wear the pants in your marriage. Seriously, no one should wear pants, its way more fun that way, until you have kids of course, then it would just be weird. Put some pants on!

road trippin’ (writing as I go)

I know I haven’t blogged in a while, but it’s mostly because I’ve been at home for the past three weeks, and let’s be honest, I don’t do anything when I’m home. Also because I usually do all my writing at the office and I’m telling you this because my boss doesn’t read this blog, she thinks I work diligently. It’s been a long three weeks and I’m ready to go back, but not before driving from Virginia to Indiana for my brother’s wedding, who actually eloped and got married in Hawaii (genius) a couple of months ago. I really think they’re throwing this wedding celebration just to get me in a van with my in-laws, my dad, my husband and my kids for 8 hours which I’m sure will turn into 10. What did I do to deserve this? I don’t know, but I’m liking the sound of the word revenge. 

When you get three old friends (in-laws and my dad) together in a car for 8 hours all they’re going to do is talk…and talk…and talk some more. And when they’re done, they’ll talk some more. And here I am in the back of the van because I’m 5 ft and no one else fits in between my daughter’s car seats but me, and I’m about to throw up, maybe because I just swallowed a bag of mini Oreos and writing this on my phone on the back. I’m also watching Frozen for the 68th time so the thought of pulling over and puking actually seems like a fun break. 

We’re driving through Pennsylvania or Maryland. I don’t even know, but I made the huge mistake of asking my dad, a geography enthusiast, because calling him a geography freak would be rude. He pulled out a map because why wouldn’t he. 25 minutes later he was still pointing out roads and stuff.
Now he’s listing ALL the states and asking me if I know their capital, which I obviously don’t because I only memorized them to pass my US History test in middle school like 20 years ago. 

The capital of California is Sacramento, NOT Hollywood. 

I just figured out that we’re in Pittsburgh, I’m sure because we had to stop to buy a blanket because I guess everyone in the car is going through menopause and the AC is blasting. I got a throw at a rest stop for $30. That was THIRTY dollars for a penguin throw which I’m guessing is the pet of their something team. Go Penguins??

The capital of Pennsylvania is Harrisburg, NOT Philadelphia. And apparently Tom Hanks does not live there.

Of course, now it’s scorching hot because there’s no way to cover the sun coming in through the back window, I have 2 huge dolls and a Penguin blanket on my lap and we’re watching Tinkerbell for the 54th time.

The capital of New York is Albany, NOT Times Square.

4 more hours to go. Namaste. Namaste. Namaste. Namaste. Namaste. Namaste. Namaste.

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that one time I had dinner with 35 foodies

I’ve said it a million times, and I’ll say it again: I am a disaster when it comes to anything that involves making food. I love to eat, don’t get me wrong, maybe a little too much actually, the problem is I can’t cook, I get annoyed reading food labels, I don’t know if 500 calories for a bagel is ridiculous or not, I can’t tell the difference between parsley and cilantro and I’m not entirely sure what a Rutabaga is, and I had to Google the correct spelling for it. I’m not proud of this trust me, I’m still working on it.  The fact that I married a chef is a huge deal for me, because I went from eating Ramen Noodles to eating fresh homemade pasta. Score.

After 10 years of being married to this guy, I’ve learned a thing or two in the kitchen, that doesn’t mean I like it now, it just means that I won’t starve to death when he’s not around. So when my husband told me that we were invited to one of his friend’s house for dinner, along with around 35 other chefs and foodies my heart immediately stopped.  Putting aside the fact that I didn’t know ANYONE at this dinner, I knew the only topic of conversation was going to be about food, something I know nothing about, except how to eat it.

I tried binge watching the Food Network Channel a few days before to see if maybe I could learn some of the lingo and not look like a complete idiot, but I couldn’t do it. I got so anxious watching these people trying to make a gourmet entrée using only a tub of peanut butter, an orange peel and a potato.  I also tried reading some of my husband’s books, I fell asleep. I tried getting him to give me a quick crash course, but it wasn’t quick, it involved charts and homework, so I told him I had to do the neighbor’s laundry and ran away.

My only hope was that maybe another lost wife was going to be there too,  maybe we would bond over our culinary ignorance, maybe we would talk about kids, maybe we would talk about shoes, maybe we would become bff’s. I was getting excited about meeting my new imaginary best friend and so was my husband, he had noticed me having all these pretend adult conversations with myself and frankly, I was starting to look like a mental person.

We got there and were received by 30 something people. I knew no one. I clenched my husband’s hand, but of course, he soon exchanged it for a glass of wine.  I looked around and did not see another lost wife like me, everyone knew each other.

After what seemed hours of following my husband around like a lost puppy mingling, we sat down and waited for the first course, in the meantime, everyone was talking about food, and ingredients, and techniques, and foam, and liquid nitrogen*(apparently, the super cool use it to cook) and that chef that was the underdog and now is super famous. All gibberish to me.

I had nothing to say.

First course came out, everyone whipped out their cameras and started snapping pictures, I followed. I don’t even know why, but everyone was doing it. One hour later we were on our fourth course. I kept thinking about my daughters, hoping  the little one would start crying so much that my father in-law would have no other option but to call me. No calls. 5th course…no calls.

Me: “So dessert is next? This is our 5th plate of food, I don’t think I can eat anymore.”

Husband: “It’s fifteen courses, desserts (as in more than one) come after.”

Fifteen courses. FIFTEEN.

I wasn’t sure I was going to make it all the way to the last course, but everything was so good I just kept eating and eating. With so much food around me and my non-stop eating, there was no time to join in the conversation even if I tried. They will ever know how much I don’t know.

I hear ya!

I hear ya!

We made it to the 9th course before my father in-law really called in a panic. The baby had woken up and wouldn’t stop crying. We had to leave early and I asked my husband if it was too tacky to ask for take out. He rolled his eyes and we left.

Next time I’ll be sure to be well prepared, I’ll study the charts and do the homework, learn the lingo and even practice some recipes of my own. I promise.

P.S.  Thank you to all the chefs and cooks out there (specially my hubby and his friends), who dedicate their days cooking AMAZING dishes. Thank you for sharing your passion and art.

* I had actually written dry ice but my husband had a mini heart attack and quickly corrected me.

my 7 year to-do list

listWho doesn’t love a to-do list? In my less than organized life (because I don’t like to say chaotic) these lists are the only thing that keep me somewhat sane. I make lists for everything, I make so many that someone actually told me I should make a how-about-I-get-a-hobby list. Instead, I made a reasons-to-mind-your-own-business list and slipped it under their door.  Seriously, leave my love for lists alone.

So naturally, being so fond of them, the minute I found out I was pregnant  I started making a list of things I needed to learn because I really knew nothing….about anything. I still don’t.

My daughter is about to turn 7, so that’s how old this list is. I’m hoping to cross everything out sometime before she has her own daughter.

My 7 year to-do list:

  • Learn how to eat like a grown up

Obviously, if my baby is going to be occupying the premises for the next 9 months I might as well start eating right so that she can grow healthy. That means no more coffee for breakfast, crappy chinese for lunch and leftovers for dinner.

  • Learn how to speed read

Because I need to read this pile of pregnancy books, along with the other pile of how to care for a newborn, how to sleep train them, how to make them the happiest baby and toddler around the neighborhood or block or something like that. Add to that my own lists of magazines books.

  • Learn how to cook

Because I’m going to have to eventually leave the hospital and feed this kid all by myself.  And yes, pureeing fruits and veggies can be a challenge for the culinary incompetents like me.

  • Learn how to sing

I read somewhere that nothing soothes a crying baby like a mother’s voice, maybe I made that one up I’m not sure, but I’m determined to calm my baby by singing sweet lullabies to her. That means I have to start by remembering the lyrics and learning a couple of new ones because Baby Got Back and Can’t Touch This are not going to cut it.

  •  Learn how to ignore unsolicited advice

A good friend of mine warned me about this. I was going to get tons of unsolicited advice, from my own mother down to the nosy stranger at the mall. Someone once told me that the baby should sleep with the lights on, that way it would force her to close her eyes and she’d eventually go to sleep. That doesn’t work, I know because I actually tried it. Don’t judge me. I knew nothing. I still don’t. My kids still sleep with me.

  •  Learn how to properly do laundry

Nothing says motherhood like being thrown up on, spitted on, pooped on and wiped on. There aren’t enough yoga pants and stretchy t-shirts in my closet to keep up with this mess.  And then there are the baby’s clothes. How can they be so dirty when everything is already on my clothes? You’d think that doing laundry is just separating the whites from the colors. I thought the same thing, turns out there’s a whole science to it. First of all, there are different water temperatures for I guess different types of fabric. I don’t even know which ones get cold/cold or which ones get hot/cold water.  In my house water is water and that’s all you need to wash your clothes. So I don’t really touch that button. It’s been on the same setting (warm/cold, I compromised) for the past 7 years. Second of all, don’t even think about not turning printed t-shirts inside out before washing them, if the print peels off, you WILL ruin your kids life. I’ve already ruined her life twice.

  •  Learn how to knit

Isn’t it a rule for every mom to know how to knit cute scarfs and hats for their kids? Or is that grandmas? Either way, I thought it would be cool to learn how to make my kids scarfs and hats so they could proudly brag to their friends that “my mom made this super awesome fancy scarf for me”. Unfortunately the plain, uneven, full of knots scarf that I made my daughter has yet to be seen in public. I think she hid it inside a shoe.

  •  Learn how to ride a bicycle without killing myself

My dad taught me how to ride a bike, his dad taught him and I’m sure his dad taught him, so I’m for sure not going to be the one to end this centuries old family tradition. I’m a great bike rider, as long as I’m going in a straight line. Don’t ask me to turn a corner or even slightly move to the right in order not to run over the speed walker that’s in front of me, sorry lady, if you don’t step aside I will have to run you over, that, or I will fall and scrape my ego…along with my knees, elbows and probably face.

  • Learn how to open a bottle of wine. 

Because I have a feeling I’m going to need some.

 

This is what I’ve accomplished so far:

1-Learn how to eat like a grownup: Only during my pregnancy, after that, back to coffee, crappy chinese and left overs.

2- Learn how to speed read: HAHAHAHAHAHA no I didn’t.

3- Learn how to cook: I learned how to make a mean pea puree, until my baby started gagging on the little peels so I quit.

4- Learn how to sing: Lullabies are seriously boring, so don’t judge my daughters when you hear them singing “I like big butts and I cannot lie”. I take full responsibility.

5- Learn how to ignore unsolicited advise: As my future husband Robert Downey Jr. said: “Listen, smile, agree and then do whatever the fu&k you were gonna do anyway”.

6- Learn how to properly do laundry: Nope. I’m still ruining my daughter’s life, one shirt at a time.

7-Learn how to knit: Who in their right mind has time to knit? I’m trying to fix my kid’s life here!

8-Learn how to ride a bicycle without killing myself: My 6 year old rides better than me. Let’s leave it at that.

9-Learn how to open a bottle of wine: Mastered it!

 

notice: elevator out of order

Every morning I snooze and snooze my alarm clock until I wake up in a panic and realize I’m already late for work. I jump out of bed, kinda shower, brush my teeth, get dressed, throw random food in lunch boxes, drop kids off, brush my hair in the car, spill my coffee in the car, stop for gas because of course, and speed to make it on time to work. But not that day, that day I woke up before the alarm went off. I took a shower, washed my hair and even had time to blow dry it, carefully picked out my outfit, sat down and drank coffee with my daughters, which by the way, are enjoying their summer vacation while I slave away at work. You’re welcome.  So of course something was going to go wrong, because when you start your mornings this way, something is bound to go wrong.

As I was walking into my office building, 5 minutes early and not 15 minutes late like always, I was received with this:

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Of course, why not?

Not 1 or 2 elevators were out of order, all 5 of them were! ALL FIVE OF THEM! Did you know I work on a 17th floor? I do.

There was no way to call in sick since a few of my co-workers had already seen me, so I had no other choice than to go up 17 floors, and in order to avoid any human interaction with the other 15 people who were about to make the journey with me, I decided to keep my mind of the climb by writing what was going through head. Enjoy.

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Needless to say, by the time I crawled to my desk my hair was drenched in sweat, I had armpit sweat stains and my feet were disgustingly dirty, and to top it all off  by 5 pm the elevators were still not fixed. But we did get a very encouraging email from Facilities letting us know that energy bars would be provided to us for our way down. Yey. Better get a water bottle from the vending machine.

Did you suffer along with me? Because if you didn’t this post was totally pointless. And please don’t judge me on any lack of punctuation, spelling or grammar mistakes you may have spotted.  I was climbing and typing!