Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Novel Openers

I started several novels in my head today.  Several of blog posts, too.  If only I could get past that first sentence or two.  Which of these openers would most entice you to read my novel?  Six choices.  Ready?  Go.

1.  I sat bored to death in the jury waiting room wondering if I would be selected for the murder trial of the century.  Then the documentary I just watched about John Wayne Gacy creeped into my mind, and I decided that the office was a less awful place.  Where is my "I Love George Bush & My AR!" t-shirt when I need it?

2.  No one admits, "I sat there rolling a freshly picked booger between my thumb and forefinger wondering what to do this Friday night," and, yet, that is what I found myself doing.  Oddly, it feels less robotic than the 100 other things I've done this week.

3.  My drive from the funeral home was a quiet one.  When I pulled into my driveway, I grabbed the box that held my little sister's ashes and wondered how her whole life fit into that small box. 

4.  Pushing an empty cart through Whole Foods was relaxing...so much so, I caught myself crop-dusting the all natural cleaning products aisle.  How, exactly, did I end up in a place where grocery browsing by myself was?

5. I stood outside letting the wind whip at my face.  I secretly wished it would knock me to the ground and give me some perspective on life and love and such.  These days, it seems, I refuse to let myself look at the sky because I just want to feel like my problems are a big deal.  If I look up, I'll be reminded that they aren't. 

6.  I felt my inner psycho fighting her way out today.  I was able to put her back in her cage, but I was left wondering if all women have that psycho inside.  I think, no, I hope the answer is "yes." 

Please don't wonder which of these actually happened...or, if you do, imagine me thinner than I actually am. And don't steal these AH-mazing story starters.  They're for real going to get me that $240,000 payday our payroll person dreamed I got.  

Tuesday, January 22, 2013


Before you get overly concerned, this is not me confessing a need to self-injure.  Go back to a time when cutting meant someone got in front of someone else in line WITHOUT permission or at least offering a cut-for-a-cut.  You're there?  Like 15+ years back, right?  Okay.  Moving on.

Cutting is so SHAMEFUL.  Don't do it.  Here's why:

1. It's rude.
2. It's rude.
3. It's freaking rude.
4. Patience is a virtue, and cutting is rude.

Yep, that's Confucius

I tried to look up some statistics on the harm cutting in line has on society, but all I got was link after link about "self-injury" with a sprinkling of "cutting the national debt".

I did, however, find out that Asians are the worst offenders because they are highly competitive and do not like being one-upped.  That's my Reader's Digest version of this blog post. Really, Asians?  Is it that, or is it the fact that there are so many people in your country that a single-file line is actually impossible? 

My issues with cutting in line go waaaaaaaaaay back to the first grade.  My class was in the library picking out books, and I was ready to check out my book for the week.  I lined up at the librarian's desk ready to go.  (I PROBABLY got distracted, but that tidbit doesn't really help the hilarious factor of my story, so forget I mentioned it.)  When I looked up to see if I was next, and I was SURE I was next, a friend had reformed a new line ONE FOOT AWAY, made a "na-na-na-na-na" face, and I told me I had to go to the back of the line.  So I went to the back of the line...


I got sent to the Vice Principal's office.  Apparently biting is a worse offence than cutting in line and making a na-na-na-na-na face, but not so awful that the Principal needs to get involved.  Anyway, no one would belive that I was the victim in this story.  Let's face it...ages 6-10 were my "ugly years", and this girl was way more adorable.  And probably nicer.  And she's probably still more adorable and nicer today.  No, really, she is. 

Kids cut in line, they bite, they name call, but it's amazing to me today how many ADULTS cut in line.  One stranger has had the privilege of cutting in front of me two years in a row.  That's the back of her head.  Because she cut in front of me. 

Here's a person who cut in front of me at the Texans game:

He's in there somewhere.  Jay made me delete my real picture of the back of his head. 

Finally, as if total strangers cutting in line isn't bad enough, a co-worker recently cut in front of me.  Since I couldn't take or post her picture, it happend like this:


In conclusion, please don't cut in line.  It's rude.  And shameful.  Unless you're Asian, but not Japanese, then it's just part of your competitive nature. 

There is a 100% chance that I'll mention all of this to my therapist in a few weeks, but for now, this should get it off my mind.  Thanks, readers! 

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

My Crunchy Side

Thanks, readers, for that great vacation.  I needed it after a week straight of blogging.  Who knew it could be so tiresome?!  I had some great one-liners to post, but I figured you'd all get angry if you went to a cleverly titled post and just saw a picture and two sentences.  I'll keep notes so I can make one super-post of random things. 

Today, though, I've been inspired to introduce the world to my crunchy side.  Here's why: 
  • People used to see me smoking and say, "You don't look like a smoker" in the same way the look at me today, and think/say, "She doesn't look like a recycler."  So I just need to get it out there.  Full disclosure. 
  • There are other people like me...Let's call us in-the-closet-crunchies, or ITCC's for short...who WANT to shout it from the mountain top and who long to make a difference but don't for fear of being judged by our non-crunchy (or so we THINK) peers.
  • I long to make a difference.
  • I need to know who else is out there to name-drop in arguements with my husband.  Yes, we argue about recycling, cleaning products, composting, wearing all cotton, and stuff like that.  I know you wish you could live my life, but you can't, so don't ask. 
Without further ado, my crunchiness in pictures... 

My composter.  I'd totally get a tumbling composter if I had it to do all over again.  But, hey, it works!  Why should we compost?  Here are a few reasons that benefit your home and garden.  Also, landfills are filling up, and no one wants to live on garbage.  Of course, I've considered the whole Zombie Apocalypse, and what if people turn to landfills to find things to eat and water to drink?  And then I thought, That's rediculous...except for the water part...

My new Starbucks cup.  It's awesome, you save $.10 per cup of coffee, and they steam clean it each visit.  10 cups of coffee, and it's paid for itself.  But can you put a price on not putting another paper Starbucks cup and plastic lid in a landfill?  I can't!  Now if only I can find a time and place to drink my expensive coffee in my reusable cup while I knit or crochet in peace and freaking quiet...that would be a dream come true. Dream big people.  Dream big.  Speaking of knitting, I knit.  That's trendy-crunchy.  Who knew crunchy had categories?  This girl. 

Under my desk at work - My empty trashcan and my almost full recycle box.  It's catching on.  I have found a few other rogue recyclers at work.  Yea! 

Since we have so many rogue recyclers, I've formed a two-person committee to make the company greener.  Here is a gumball representation of how many times I've emailed office services about getting real recycle bins.  I'm happy to report we'll get them in the next couple of weeks.  Persistence pays off!

And the picture I know many of you have been waiting to see.  My deodorant stone.  It works!  "How do you know?  You can't smell yourself," you ask?  Well.  I'm happy to report that I've had a few friend test subjects confirm that I have no B.O. The test was never in a controlled environment, and usually wine was involved.  Oh well.  Here's how to use it.  That's not my video.  Can you believe the stuff you can find on YouTube?  Holy crap! And if you aren't crunchy, don't care if you get breast cancer and love throwing your plastic deodorant container in the trash, here's another reason to use it:  It costs $6-8 and lasts for 6 months to a year.  Hellooooo money savings! 

My beautiful reusable shopping bag.  Get them at Sam's, and you can get your whole week of shopping in two bags...for realz.  Raise your hand if you've wondered what's going to happen to all of the reusable shopping bags of the world one day?  *hand raised*  Thanks, Google, for leaving no question unaswered, kinda.  

Before I post my last mind-blowing picture evidence of my crunchiness, I'd like to also add that I keep a Netflix subscription just for the documentaries,  put stuff back on the shelf if it's not made in America, use all-natural cleaning products for the house and laundry, am a member of a organic produce co-op, and I am obsessed with homeopathic remedies - I recently treated my daughters infected, ingrown toenail with Epsom salt and tea tree oil.  Can you hear the crunch?  I thought so.  And you thought you knew me...

I've purposefully left out the parts about driving an SUV and eating fast food.  It's not because I want to, though. teehee.

And finally, for those of you who are still doubting my crunchiness, there's this.  Who can call himself or herself "Crunchy" without having been to an Eddie Vedder concert.  'Nuff said.  

Sure there are crunchier people out there, but I'm working hard to do my part to leave a smaller pile of trash behind...and a healthier bunch of kids and grandkids.  What if by all being more conscientious of the things that cause disease, our generation's legacy is not the fattest or the dumbest or the life spans shorter than our parents, but is the reduction of terminal diseases and a reversal of the destruction of the environment?  HOW COOL WOULD THAT BE????  I want to get behind that!!!  Get out of the "closet" you ITCC's, and influence change! 

Friday, January 4, 2013

Depressing Day (not really, but I need a little drama in my life)

So, I've managed to make myself completely depressed today which sucks because the day started out soooo promising.  (I TOTALLY WON $10,000 fake dollars on my Jeopardy app before I even got out of bed.)

I got to Starbucks, and they didn't have the yogurt I wanted.  And the picture of the Spinach Feta wrap on their order board looked way more delicious than I know the real thing looks.  I wasn't in the mood for an ugly wrap...so I skipped on breakfast.  Depressing.

Then, I got an email from Target telling me that my ho-hum business wardrobe was SO 2012.  I clicked the link (because who wants to be ho-hum or SO 2012), but they were just joking...they don't have non-ho-hum styles for plus sized women.  At this point, I started to look at skinny clothes and look forward to the day I'll wear them, but all of the models were standing like this.  I don't even want to be skinny anymore if it means I have to stand like that.  It's not adorable.  Depressing.

Then, I went to Panera with my friend.  I had a free pastry/cookie/treat on my Panera Rewards Card, so I go the Candy Cookie (that's "grown-up" for M & M Cookie).  I took it back to the office.  I ate it.  I looked up the calories after the fact.  Bad idea.  I think the cookie had more calories than my entire lunch.  Depressing. 

Then, I was thinking about my future.  My family's future.  I thought, "I'll throw together a spreadsheet to show a debt pay-off snowball so we can maximize our savings!" Such! A great! Idea! Not. Because after I realized that my student loan will be there forever, I decided to shift my focus to retirement.  I need $4M to retire at 65 according to my calculations.  I have, like, 30 years to do that, right?  So I put pen to paper to see how much I need to start putting away each month for retirement.  $4600.  For realz.  Depressing. 

So, I had to resort to a little Blog Therapy.  And in doing so, I rediscovered how rainbows are made, and that's all I needed to turn my frown upside down.    

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Dear Life...

Dear Life,

Why don't you come with a User's Guide?  I know you like to keep things mysterious and interesting and all, but I think most of humanity would benefit from knowing the answers to the following questions: 
  • How long can we keep certain foods in the refrigerator before they go bad?  Ex. picante sauce, vegetable soup and lunchmeat
  • Should we just stop making hotdogs altogether?
  • How are we saved?
  • When/How do you talk to your children about sex and death?
  • How do I know when pork is really done (but not too dry)?
  • What's the best way to raise kids? 
  • Spank or don't spank?
  • What's the best haircut for my face shape?
  • Why don't pets live as long as people?


Dear Jennifer,

Please refer to the Bible and/or Etiquette by Emily Post for all of these answers. Google anything else.

You're welcome,


Wednesday, January 2, 2013

When 30-Somethings Get Wild and Crazy...

This post is entirely fictitious.  Any resemblance to actual people, places or events is purely coincidental.  And no animals were harmed in the making of this blog post. 

...And since you already know I'm lying, I'll go ahead and spare myself the grief of typing this whole story in third-person.

New Year's Eve 2012 started out normal enough.  My husband and I were running late to the NYE Party of the Year.  I promised the hostess that when we got there "Shit was gonna get REAL," and it kinda did - we're all responsible 30-somethings, right?  Most of us had kids at the party for goodness sake!  Since I was late, I had some catching up to do, but it didn't take long for the demon-fire-water to do its thang and my alter-ego, Virginia, to show up.  She's crazy. She kissed the hostess at midnight and even won in a dance off with I-don't-remember-who.  Giddy Up!

Games played, snacks eaten, demon-fire-water consumed, hostess kissed, kids tucked in.  It was time.  Time to...you guessed it...get Wild AND Crazy.  And it went something like this:

Ladies to each other:  Alright.  You ready?

Ladies to Husbands:  Okay.  You got this, right?  We won't be gone long. Unless we need you to bail us out.  Then we'll call. 

Ladies to each other:  Let's roll.  (haha)

Me...er...Virginia:  Oh shit.  They're leaving me. You're sure you'll bail us out right?

Husbands to Virginia: Nope.  Have fun. Don't get caught.

We drove to Wal-Mart, bought the necessary supplies, chatted it up with a drunk, pierced, tattooed guy there with his wife and kids, then ran back out to the car. 

By now, you may have guessed what we did.  If you thought, "They're in their 30s, so they probably just drove around eating chocolate and listening to Ice Ice Baby or Hot Stepper," then you're partially right.  If you thought, "OH NO THEY DIDN'T GO WRAP A HOUSE?!?!?!  HOW COOL IS THAT?!?!  I WANT TO BE THEIR FRIEND!!!" then you hit the nail on the head. 

But we didn't wrap just any house.  We wrapped the parsonage.  The. Preacher's. House.  Uh.  Actually, we wrapped THE. PREACHERS'.  HOUSES.  Here's a picture of the just-wrapped Sr. Pastor's house. 

It was dark, and my flash wasn't working.  But you can clearly see a porch light and two AWESOMELY long strands of toilet paper.  Let your imagination fill in the rest.  And here's what it looked like the next day.
The next morning, we all felt triumphant! We are in our 30s, and we wrapped a house!  We drove by to get a really good picture, and it turns out it just looked like we had littered.  Oh the guilt.  The shame.  We wrapped the preacher's house.  Will he know we did it because we like him?  Will the Associate Pastor know that our one-ply wet mess was really a gift of love?  Our parents raised us well, I suppose because we knocked on the door and told them that we saw that some hooligans had wrapped their house, and as upstanding members of the church, we were going to clean it up for them.  I'm pretty sure they believed every word...then they took our picture and shamed us on Facebook for all time.
Despite all of the guilt and the cleaning up and the public shaming, there were talks of this being an annual event.  Not the same house or the same method of mischief...but when you only live once, and your friends make you feel like a kid again, why not?

Tuesday, January 1, 2013


Every year I SWEAR I'm not going to make any resolutions (which in itself is a resolution) because resolutions are made to be broken.  But this year is different.  This year, I made some.  I'm not going small with just one.  I'm going GIGANTIC with, like, 50 or so (should my first resolution be to exaggerate less?  Heck no!).

Resolution #1: Lose Weight/Be Healthier

Let's just get this one out of the way.  It needs to happen.  It's not getting any easier.  I am happy to report that my mad Dance Dance Revolution skills helped me lose a pound or so last night.  I'll just keep up the good work.  I owe it to me and my family - especially my kids.  AND I don't want to be the token fat girl in my friend group anymore.  Someone has to be, but I'm sure we'll find one when the time is right.

Resolution #2: Blog More

I'm committing to my readers and me to blog more.  It's not titled Blog Therapy for no reason.  I need to do this as much as you need to read it.  I might even explore some of my old, rediculous blog posts that never made it to press...a challenge to see if I can actually finish a thought.

Resolution #3: Keep the clutter to a Minimum

Boy howdy do I live to pile!  2013 is the year of fewer piles. 

Resolution #4: Spend less time on Facebook

A friend of mine is going cold turkey for a whole year!  I can't do that, but I realized the other day when my three-year-old said, "Take a picture of me and put it on Facebook," I may need to dial it back a notch.  Don't be sad.  You can still follow me on Twitter, Instagram, Google+, Blogspot and Tumblr.  Oh, and LinkedIn.  But that's all.

I'll have to add the other 46 later because I forgot them.  All I can think about right now is how much I'm looking forward to 2013 and all of its fun and friends and mysteries and excitement!!!