Sunday, April 30, 2006

An Afternoon of Cultural Enrichment

Today was the 15th annual Festival de la Familia, which celebrates Latino heritage and is the biggest one-day event in Northern California.

I figured we should go check it out. For one thing, I want to my son to be exposed to quality learning opportunities regarding his Mexican-American heritage. For another thing, I like to eat Mexican food and you know how hard it is to find good Mexican food in California right?

That said, I thought it would be a great family outing for us so I dragged my Mexican-American husband (who would have really rather watched golf all day) with me and Little Guy to the festival.

It didn’t exactly turn out to be the enriching cultural experience that I had hoped for. Not really the festival’s fault I guess, but somehow it just, well, kinda sucked. Maybe it was partly due to the fact we were outdoors with no shade in 90-degree heat the whole time. I dunno.

Anyhow, here’s how we spent the afternoon:
Time spent walking two miles to the festival entrance because I was too cheap to pay to park in the lot: 20 minutes

Time spent checking out the really cool art exhibit: 5 minutes

Time spent waiting in line for nachos: 45 minutes

Time spent looking for two squares of shade to sit down and eat our nachos: 15 minutes

Time spent eating nachos and watching some really cool-looking Aztec dancers wait to go on stage and dance: 10 minutes

Time spent reapplying Little Guy’s sunscreen: 0 minutes/oops forgot it at home!

Time spent worrying that Little Guy will get skin cancer some day due to his sun exposure at this event: 60 minutes

Time spent dragging my hot, tired butt back to the car and cursing myself for not parking in the lot: 35 minutes
In sum:

Total time at the festival: 130 minutes
Total time increasing our awareness of Latino culture: 5 minutes

Total calories consumed: 500
Total calories burned: 1000
(Well, at least I burned some calories.)

Saturday, April 29, 2006

Renting My Blog and other Symptoms of Bloggeritis

A few days ago, I posted about my meth-addict-like blogging obsession. I was so totally relieved when Nancy informed me that there is actually a name for this affliction—Bloggeritis. Somehow, knowing that I’m not the only one who might have considered buying a Dictaphone and matching Chin Bud Headset to capture blogworthy ideas at a moment’s notice makes me feel less, well, freakish. At least slightly.

being the fiend that I am, I have two pieces of exciting news to share:

1. I have recently joined the 21st Century and upgraded my 56K modem to DSL so that I can get my fix faster. This is really spectacular news considering that just last month my phone company refused to provide me DSL service because I was 134 feet (I sh*t you not) too far outside the service area. 134 feet? I practically walk farther from the couch to the kitchen to get myself more Cheez-Its. But whatever. There was no reasoning with them. I tried.

But--on to the good news...After scouring the Internet like a madwoman for any DSL provider that could give me a break, I finally found ONE company, ONE, that would do it for me. I am now all hooked up to my DSL and it is feelin' oh SO good to have speed!

2. My second piece of news is that I have begun renting my blog! Yes, like a gold-digger competing on Flavor of Love, I am pimping myself out...and my fellow bloggers too! So, go visit my new tenant, Zephra, at Chronicles of an Exhausted Mom. She has four, yes, four children. No wonder she’s exhausted!

But she's awesome. So go check her out.

Quick, before it's too late.

Look over to the right sidebar, then scroll down, past!

Edited to add: What was I thinking putting my lovely tenant down past Archives?! That was pretty inhospital of me. I now have her in a more prominent location with a nice header.

Thursday, April 27, 2006

Annoying Relative of the Week

Ah, annoying relatives. Do they set out to irritate us? Do they practice in front of the mirror every morning to perfect their art? Really, what family would be whole without at least one? Our Thanksgivings would surely not be as fun.

Well, in honor of these special family members, I’d like to offer a recent exchange I had with someone in my family, who shall remain nameless lest someone he knows reads this blog someday, but who really deserves the title of... Annyoying Relative of the Week.

Scene: It's Friday, which is usually my day off, but I had to wake up at the butt crack of dawn to put in overtime at the office. I'm finally headed home. I'm tired, harried, and already annoyed. That's when I run into this special person. Here is a snippet from our exchange:

Relative: Did you comb your hair today?

Me (taken off guard): Huh?

Relative: Did you comb your hair? (Apparently he thinks I’m not only poorly groomed but also a deaf moron.)

Me (incredulous): Uh, yeah.

Relative: Well, it’s hard to tell. You might want to run a brush through it.

Me (stupidly defensive):
What?! My hair looks fine. I’ve had a busy day. I haven’t had time to worry about my hair. Anyway, I don’t really care how it looks.

Relative: I’m just saying you might want to comb it.

Me: (speechless)

Relative: Well, you want M to grow up one day and say “My mommy is pretty” don’t you?


Wow. That. Was. RUDE!

But as totally offensive as it was, it got me thinking. What do I want my Little Guy to say about me when he grows up? Do I want him to say, “My mommy is pretty. She’s beautiful. She looks great in those Seven Jeans?”

Or do I want him to say, “Mommy is smart. Mommy makes me laugh. We have fun together. Mommy loves me. Mommy makes me feel safe. I love my mommy.” I think I’m more inclined to want to hear these things from my Little Guy.

And yeah, it would be nice if he thought his mother was pretty too. But if not, I’ll live.

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

The First Step is Admitting You Have a Problem

Ever since I came out of the closet two months ago, I realize that I’m spending increasingly obscene amounts of time blogging. I found some questions on the Internet about “signs and symptoms of drug addiction” to help me figure out whether I might have a problem.

1. Do you sometimes drink/blog more than you intend to? Um yeah. I can't read my mommy blogs fast enough. If I could crush Motherhood Uncensored into a powder and snort it through a straw, I would. Just so I could read all her wonderful posts as fast as she writes them.
2. Do you sometimes "sneak" your drugs/blogging, hiding the extent of your use from lovers, friends and co-workers? Well, sometimes when the hubby walks in while I'm writing a blog post, I get very startled. I don't know why. It's not like I'm writing really embarrassing things about him or anything.

3. Do you prefer to drink/blog alone? I don’t like anyone watching me reading blogs, writing posts, or doing anything blog related. It makes me nervous. I'm not sure why, but it does.

4. Do you drink/blog to escape your worries or pressures? Uh, yeah. I mean, why else would you blog?

5. Do you drink/blog to build your self-confidence? Well, comments on my posts do make me feel good. Uh oh.

6. Do you think your drug/blog use helps you deal with loneliness, rejection or loss? Sometimes when other mamas visit my blog, I feel less lonely. Not that I'm lonely really. But you know. It's like friends stopping by for a visit. It's cool.

7. Daily drinking/blogging is surely a danger sign. Would you find it very difficult to come home at the end of the day and not have a drink? If I can’t check in on some of my mommy blogs at least once a day, I get jittery.

8. If you look back over the past several months, are you consistently drinking/blogging more each day than you used to? Oh yeah. I started out by reading just a couple blogs and now I try to read 18 of them! Even my blogroll can't keep up.

9. Do you have a drink when you wake up to calm your nerves? I try to check in on Mom 101 before I even get my coffee. So yeah.

10. Is your sex life suffering because after a night of drinking/blogging you just want to go to sleep? I usually blog in the evening and by the time I get to bed the hubby is asleep so, yikes, I guess our sex life is suffering.


So, how about you? Are you a blogger addict? Is there help for this affliction?

Sunday, April 23, 2006

Why I Don’t Make Homemade Baby Food (Excuse #12)

This is what happens when I turn on the blender. No joke.

Not sure if he’s protesting the noise or the fact that I’m making him my special spinach, broccoli, and tofu medly. Hmmmm.

(picture removed)

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

FYI: Watch Out for the Pancake Mix

Something happened when I got pregnant. I became a worrier. I'm like that one friend you have that’s always preparing for the worst and is amazed that you don’t have 20 gallons of water, a battery operated radio, and canned food supplies to last 6 weeks sitting in your garage. You know, just in case of a flood, an earthquake, or (God forbid) an Avian flu outbreak?

Yep, that's me.

And it all started with my pregnancy. I was constantly worried....Are my kick counts OK? Can I eat that gorgonzola cheese? Is it OK to scoop my cat poop? Can I enter a smoky bar? What about coffee, aspartame and mercury in tuna? Can I sleep on my back? Can I sleep on my stomach? Is it safe to travel on an airplane? What about herbal tea? Is that safe to drink? Is a positive RH factor a good thing? Phewww.

But all of that was just a warm up to the worries after the baby came. Then it was: Will my milk come in? What about thrush? How do you get that? Is cradle cap serious? Do vaccinations cause autism? Does baby acne leave scars? Shoot, was that my stroller that was just recalled? And what the heck is Roseola anyway? Are carrots really a choking hazard? Oh my God, will he really get SIDS if he sleeps on his stomach?! AHHHHHHHHHHH!

There’s more, but you get the idea. It’s endless. And just when I thought I couldn’t worry about ONE. MORE. THING. I read this article.

Pancakes Made From Old Mix Cause Acute Allergic Reaction

Yes, it appears that old pancake mix can actually be toxic and result in death if consumed. Just thought you should know. Cuz I’m sure you have nothing else to worry about.

Sunday, April 16, 2006

You know your Easter is gonna suck when...

1. You wake up with flu symptoms.

2. Your parents' invitation to dinner is rescinded because you're probably contagious.

3. The only food you have in your house is canned...and your husband wants to know what's for dinner.

4. That cute outfit you bought for baby's first Easter is still hanging in the closet.

5. It's raining. Hard.

6. You're walking around the house with a dust mask on hoping against hope that your baby doesn't catch whatever the heck you have.

7. You're blogging about how bad your Easter sucks. On Easter morning.

Boy, can you feel the self-pity oooozing from your computer screen?

Friday, April 14, 2006

Baby (frank)Einstein?

Mothers-to-be across the nation add them to their baby registries every day. Hundreds of customers are heralding them as “a godsend”, “captivating”, and a “must have” for parents. Yes, it seems that any mother who is anybody is going to get a Baby Einstein DVD for their baby. (That is, if they care at all whether their babies develop good verbal skills, creativity, memory, and spatial intelligence.)

Well, I finally got one of these DVDs this week and (somewhat guiltily) plunked by 9-month-old down to watch. And I can truly say that my honest reaction upon viewing the first 60 seconds of the video was "What in the hell kind of weird as* sh*t is this?" The next 60 seconds weren’t much better. In fact, the entire DVD really just freaked me out.

I'm sure you've seen one of these by now. You may even be one of the 474 people on who posted eloquently about how wonderfully brilliant this DVD is. And maybe it is. Or maybe it's just some drugged up mommy's acid trip put to classical music.

In any case, if you haven't viewed one yet, the basic idea, as I understand it, is to flash random "mind-stimulating" images on the screen for baby to watch while hearing classical music. Here are a few of the synapse-building images that you'll see on the Baby Mozart-Baby Einstein DVD:

Is that a scary looking polar bear holding a coke and blowing bubbles from liquid in a cauldron? Yep, that's what that is!

Weird psychedelic dripping substance #6.

Uh, I paid $19.99 for this DVD. Is that a hand in the frame? Is that hand supposed to be there?

I hate to use the words "devil-worshipper" but...

So, what am I missing? Please, someone, tell me why these people are making millions off these things. I've heard it comes in handy as a great babysitting tool, but really, am I the only one out there who thinks these things are just a little weird?

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

You're It!

I've been tagged by Reluctant Housewife who's asking me to reveal six weird facts about myself and then tag six more people.

So gosh, only six weird things? It's gonna be hard to narrow this down so I'm going to have to tie this to a theme. So, here are...

Six weird things about my physical apperance

1. My left leg is longer than my right leg.

2. My spine is shaped like an S with a lumbar curve of 42 degrees.

3. If my spine were straight, I would be one inch taller.

4. I can turn my eyelids inside out. (When I was little, I actually thought this was a true talent.)

5. The length of my pinky finger exactly equals the length of my nose. (And yeah, I have a pretty long pinky finger and hence a pretty long nose. I'm Italian. Whaddayawant?)

6. Being Italian, I'm much hairer than I would like to be.
I know. I know. You probably have this horrible image of what I look like in your mind right now. Something along these lines maybe...

But rest assured, this is only what I look like first thing in the morning. I'm really sooooo much prettier once I've had my coffee.

OK, now, it's your turn. If you're reading this, then consider yourself tagged. I'm also tagging the following lovely bloggers who have been nice enough to pay me a visit me lately:

1. Maryanne
2. Mega Mom
3. Kvetch Blogger
4. Catherine
5. Sunshine Scribe
6. Kristen

Monday, April 10, 2006

My Dream Weekend

This post is in response to The Crazy Hip Blog Mamas newest writing prompt: “If I had an entire weekend to myself I would...”

Well, since getting a whole weekend to myself would only happen in my dreams, I might as well make it good, so here goes...

Day One

5:30am: Wake up disoriented. Where am I? Do I go to work today? Realize I’m in Hawaii in a beachfront bungalow. Squeal with joy and fall back to sleep.

6:30am: Wake up again. Is that the baby crying? Nope. Still in Hawaii....awesome! Fall back to sleep.

Still sleeping…oh yeah, baby.

11:00am: Wake up for real. Stretch. Look over to my bedstand and see my favorite breakfast, piping hot and ready to eat (blueberry pancakes, scrambled eggs, toast with butter, fresh squeezed orange juice, and coffee). Yum.

12:00pm: Get dressed for the beach. Realize that I have lost 5 dress sizes and all of my cellulite. Excitedly slip on a string bikini. Lookin' good.

1:00pm: Step out to the beach, lay down on the warm sand, and actually read a book in peace. For three hours.

4:00pm: Indulge in a deluxe Swedish aromatherapy massage and full body wrap. Ahhhh.

5:30pm: While enjoying a cocktail (or two) before dinner, look up to see Ben Affleck standing over me. “Excuse me, I can’t stand to see a woman dine alone. Can I join you?”

9:00pm: Phone the husband. “You’ll never believe this honey, but I’m here with Ben Affleck, and well, I don’t know exactly how to say this, but…OK, I’ll just say it. He wants to offer us a million dollars if I’ll sleep with him.”

9:02pm: After thinking long and hard, hubby figures one million dollars doesn’t come around too often so what the hay.

9:03pm on... Sorry, password protected.

Day Two

11:00am: After sleeping in again, wake up, boot Ben out of bed, and head on home to be with my loving husband and child, one million dollars richer and totally rejuvenated!

Hey, a girl can dream can’t she?

Sunday, April 09, 2006

You can take the man out of the bachelor pad, but...

The good news? Dave likes to clean. The bad news? His tactics are sometimes lacking. To illustrate my point, I will provide this exchange, which occured yesterday morning:

Me: Why are you dusting with my underwear?!

D (annoyed): I need something to dust with.

Me (grossed-out): Well, couldn't you find something else besides my underwear?

D: It's not like they're weren't going to be washed.

Me: You mean you're dusting with my dirty underwear????
And he was. Eww. Eww. And triple Eww.

(The pile of dirty clothes where said "dustrag" was obtained.)
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