Saturday, October 27, 2012

30 days of thanks: a November challenge (2012 style!)

So while I've been fretting on Twitter and everywhere else about the upcoming FRANKENSTORM OF DOOM (but seriously, this is really the first time I've ever been actually scared of a storm), my girl Brandee reminded me of a little challenge I headed up last November - 30 days of thanks. Click on the link to read about this simple challenge to look around and take stock of what you're thankful for - whether it be a good stash of library books to keep you entertained when the power goes out (check), a roof over your head to keep you safe (check), or a bottle of wine to keep you sane (double check).

The challenge begins November 1. It can be as simple as a tweet, a picture, or a long blog post. Join us, won't you? And spread the word!

Oh, if you're tweeting, let's hashtag this #30daysofthanks.


Friday, October 26, 2012

it's the end of the world as we know it/weekend update.

Holla holla it’s the weekend! After the great root canal debacle this week, I am so ready for the weekend. Amidst preparing for the GREATEST FRANKENSTORM HURRICANE NOR’EASTER HALLOWEEN STORMPACALYPSE (if you haven’t heard about this storm yet – and how haven’t you? – we are poised to be hit with a storm like none ever seen, for real. A nor’easter with a delicious hurricane center.) we have other stuff to do. Here’s what’s up:
In just a bit, I am heading out to Jane’s school, where I am volunteering at the Halloween Bingo party tonight. Greg is bringing Jane a little bit later. Considering there’s a very good chance that Halloween will be canceled again this year (oh, didn’t I mention? This storm will land on the one year anniversary of Snowtober last year.) this may be her only chance to dress up in her costume. What is she going to be, you ask? Why, a butterfly fairy princess. What is that, you say? Ummm….I’ll let you know later. She seems to think she’s prepared, so I’m following her lead.
ETA: Apparently this is what a butterfly fairy princess looks like. Also - the bingo was super-fun.
Tomorrow Jane and I will be attending one of her besties’ birthday party. It is a Pinkalicious party, and I have it on good authority that there will be pink cupcakes so I am thrilled. Tomorrow night, I’m driving about two hours to go see a friend in Rocky Horror Picture Show. I’ve never seen this show or movie, can you believe it? I’m not sure I’ll like it, but I sure do like my friend, so I’ll be there. I plan to entertain myself with frightening weather forecasts on the ride there and back. Stories of destruction and mayhem are sure to keep me awake!
Sunday we will root around the state for any leftover batteries, candles, water and non-perishable food items in the stores. You may think I’m joking but I am already hearing about major grocery stores being out of water. THE GROCERY STORE DOESN’T HAVE WATER.
Hopefully they’ll still have beer.
What are you up to this weekend?

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

today sucked, and then someone said I look like a movie star

So, today really sucked. And then something awesome happened. But mostly it sucked.

Jane had a field trip at school today, which meant that after I dropped her off in the morning, I actually had a couple of free hours before work. Like any masochist, I decided to use that time to get a cavity filled.

A couple of weeks ago when I went for my cleaning, the dentist told me I really really needed to get a cavity filled that had formed under a filling and was, apparently, really close to the nerve. I didn't have any pain, and he was quite surprised about that. When I went in today for the filling, he told me not to be surprised if it turned out I needed a root canal, so if I wanted to postpone the whole thing until I felt pain, that was an option. I asked if there was any chance it would just be a regular filling. He said there was a small chance, so I decided to go for it.

So, yeah, after much drilling and, yes, eventual pain, it turned out I needed a root canal. Motherfucker, I hate going to the dentist as it is, and root canals are a nightmare - I had another one eight years ago, a mere four weeks before my wedding, when one of my teeth decided to fall apart in a blaze of glory. I was able to get into an endodontics office this afternoon, so I called in sick, cried for a while in my car because I don't want to deal with this in any way and went in for that hellish appointment.

It was just as pleasant and fun as your typical major dental work, and super-expensive to boot. And that's before I even have the crown work done, which will happen soon. I don't usually say "FML," but FML, you know?

Oh, I need to add in the part where they used so much novocaine the right side of my face was (and continues to be, 6 hours later) completely numb from my chin to my eye. MY EYE. My eye has never been numb before. I cannot move the right side of my face at all.

This afternoon also happens to be when I planned to meet up with my friends Beth and Lisa. Lisa's poor pup and beloved friend of us all, Molly, had to be put down last week, and I wanted to do a check-in with Lisa, so we planned to meet at Starbucks at 4. My face was nowhere near moving at that point, but I went anyway, because this was a special meeting. Luckily enough for Lisa, I also forgot my wallet/bag thingy, so I let her buy me coffee too.

Yeah, that's right:my friend WHO IS MOURNING HER DOG had to buy me coffee. God, I suck.

BUT THEN: As we were waiting for our coffees, the most amazing thing happened. The barista dude looks at me and says, for real, "you look like Sandra Bullock." He sincerely said this. For real. Out of his mouth.

So me and my half-face laughed and laughed in a really creepy way no doubt, and it was awesome.

And how's your Wednesday?

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

I am ridiculous, and other adventures in NYC.

So yeah. The NYC trip was ridiculous and amazing, as always. Every time I go to New York I get super hyped up, and then I think, “maybe it just won’t be as fun this time.” And then it is. And more.

Beth, Lisa and I were on the train early on Saturday morning, and after a Metro-North train, subway, PATH train and light rail train, we were in Lisa’s new apartment in NJ. Oh – there was a little bit of a hike with our bags too, but we won’t get into that. An hour or so later, we were back in the city and met up with the one and only Bryan.
You may be wondering to yourself why a young NYU theater student would want to hang out with some old biddies like us. Bryan was an intern for Beth and myself back when I used to work with Beth at my old job. So when we visit the NYC, we make him hang out with us. Somehow, he seems to sincerely enjoy it, and laughs at everything we say. I wish I could carry him around in my pocket, but 1) he’s too tall and 2) he’s got a theater world to conquer.
Anyway, by this point I was so hungry I was ready to gnaw off my arm, so we found this sports bar and ate all manner of fried appetizers for lunch, and it was awesome.. After that we went to Molly's Cupcakes and I’ll tell you this – they are the best cupcakes I’ve ever had in New York. Perhaps anywhere? Magnolia and Crumbs can shove it, for all I care. This time I had a pumpkin spice cupcake and I wanted to marry it. Bryan had three cupcakes, by the way.
After that we went to Washington Square Park and took some of the insane photos you see below. Many were recreations of previous pics we took the last time we were all together. Because we are JUST THAT COOL. I think it’s important to note that we were all 100% sober at the time. You wouldn’t think so, right?
After THAT, we parted ways with Bryan and headed to Hell’s Kitchen area for drinking and eating fun. Beth, Lisa and I stopped for a drink (I can’t remember where…things get increasingly fuzzy at this point) (ETA: Beth remembered. It was Vlada.) and then had a glorious reunion with our friends Justin (who lives in LA), Shawn (who lives in Astoria) and new friend Brent (who also lives in Astoria) at Vynl. We ate and drank and acted stupid and then carried on to Therapy where we drank more and reunited with MORE friends like Leah and Melissa and Bryan again and it was just great. I mean, seriously great.
Around midnight we high-tailed it back to the PATH station to start our commute back to Lisa’s before the trains shut down for the night. Along the way something SO RIDICULOUS happened to me that the first thing I said was “please don’t post this on Facebook!!!’” This means it’s really insane because I’ll post pretty much anything on Facebook as many of you well know. And if you think I’m re-telling the story here, you’re crazy. But suffice to say, I am an enormous, enormous ass, and there is photographic evidence of this. But oh, it was so so so so so funny and I don’t think Bryan will ever, not ever, stop laughing about it.
After we handled THAT escapade, we headed back to Lisa’s and had a sleepover. The next morning we went to breakfast in Hoboken, and it was back home to CT. Ten minutes after I walked in the door, Greg, Jane and I were back in the car, headed to my friends’ house for a thoroughly delicious and entertaining Canadian Thanksgiving celebration.
What a whirlwind this weekend was. Relaxing? Not even a little bit. Can I wait to do it again? Nope.

Friday, October 19, 2012

weekend update.

Being a half-time stay-at-home-mom in the mornings with Jane, and a half-time member of the professional marketing/PR workforce in the afternoon, has rendered me FULLY exhausted this rainy Friday. So this is just a quick hello and happy weekend wish to you.

My weekend will hopefully be awesome, as I am headed to the New York City with my friends Beth and Lisa, and we will be meeting up with the one and only Austermania for cupcakes and hijinks, and then going out with other friends from our theater world at night, one who is in town from Los Angeles. I'm completely psyched.

And then the cherry on top of my weekend will be a delicious belated Canadian Thansgiving dinner with my friends Todd and Alan and a bunch of their other friends on Sunday evening. Alan has finally bid auf Wiedersehen to Germany, as I've mentioned before, and I'm super-excited to see his face.

What are you up to? Details, please - I'm incredibly nosy!

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

wednesday wrap-up.

Did you guys watch the debate last night? Whoa nelly, that was a stressful one. I promised myself my bleeding heart and I wouldn’t get obsessed with the presidential election this year, and of course I ignored my promise and obsessed anyway, and now I am (like mostly everyone else) ready for it to be over because I can’t stand the anxiety anymore. I get so emotionally involved to the point where I can’t even really talk about it with anyone or I’ll start crying or something. I rarely post anything political on Facebook anymore so as not to incite fights among my friends, although I do a little more so on Twitter, because I find myself unable to stop retweeting people who are far more clever than I am. And, let’s face it, my tweets are much more stream-of-consciousness than my Facebook statuses are. Or, God forbid, my oft-neglected blog.
But, anyway, I hate hate hate watching debates because they are so incredibly stressful and I don’t like people yelling at each other but I was happy with how my team did. And I feel like there is such a lack of respect for women from the other team and there I go again…I am NOT getting into this now.
So Jane decided to give herself a haircut this morning. I was brushing her hair for school when I noticed a chunk of hair came out. Like…healthy hair, not snarled hair (or hair with glue in it, which was also something we had to deal with today). And I worried right away that she had some sort of disease that would make all her hair fall out, of course, because that’s how my hypochondriatic brain rolls. But the hair looked….freshly cut, you know? LIGHTBULB. I asked Jane if she cut her hair. And she nodded. And then I asked if she cut her hair with scissors (you really have to clarify things with kids sometimes). And she nodded again. And I asked where on her head she cut, and she pointed to the front left side of her hair. And then I went out into the living room and saw little chunks of hair sitting next to her scissors she uses for her “arting.”
THANKFULLY she didn’t attack her bangs. What she did is noticeable if you’re looking, and I’ll have to have a hairdresser do something with it, but her hair is usually all over the place anyway, like any typical kid, so unless it’s all brushed straight it’s hard to tell. But if it is brushed straight you will see that it is slightly mullet-ish on the front left. New trend: Half-mullets. Watch for it.
Oh oh oh, one more thing. So last night I was sitting on my bed with my laptop. All of the sudden, the bed started shaking. Naturally I called Greg and told him our house was haunted. Really - I did this. And he said it was probably the wind but I said it wasn’t windy and it was either an earthquake or probably a ghost and he said a haunting would be kind of exciting. And I laughed, but between you and me, a part of me was really concerned because I AM FOR REAL SCARED OF GHOSTS.
Lucky for me, it was an earthquake! My first ever. Very exciting, especially since it only lasted a few seconds and wasn’t deadly or anything.
How’s your week going?

Monday, October 15, 2012


So Saturday night’s super-secret surprise party was for my sister’s 50th birthday.
My sister Sue is so cool. I’m serious. She’s 11 years older than me but I’ve always looked up to her and really idolized her when I was a kid. She was a glamorous college girl in California when I was going through my most awkward and wretched pre-teen years, and I absolutely loved when she came home for holidays and vacation – it felt like a celebrity was visiting, it really did. And she’s still so pretty and fun and awesome and so much cooler than I could ever hope to be.
Her life (like everyone’s) hasn’t always been easy, but her attitude is so positive and infectious it’s really hard not to have a great time when you’re with her. If you think I’M loud and outgoing, well, then, you haven’t spent time with my sister.
So I was really excited about her party this weekend, especially since she’s always the one planning the parties and celebrations for everyone else. Greg and I had a great time (sans Jane) with 55 of my sister's closest friends and family members. Something I learned: when your 22-year-old niece peer pressures you to go shot-for-shot with her, don’t give in. I did, and uggggghhhhhhh is all I can say to that. Who do I think I am? AMANDA YOU ARE NOT IN YOUR EARLY TWENTIES ANYMORE AND NEITHER IS YOUR ALCOHOL TOLERANCE.
Side note: it’s so weird to have a niece and nephew (22 and 25, both children of my other, non-birthday-girl sister) who can legally drink. OMG, I babysat these kids! But I was a very young aunt. Thankfully my other niece (Sue’s daughter) still has five years to go before I can run into her at a bar.
Please do enjoy these shitty pictures, courtesy of my Blackberry (apologies to those who already saw these on Facebook). ETA: I realize now that I am in all of these pictures. Sorry bout that.
 Just say no, Amanda.
Me and my bro. 
 Me and the Greg.
 Me and the sisters.
 Me and the birthday sister.

The siblings and mom.
The nieces.


Friday, October 12, 2012

weekend update.

Has anyone noticed that I am desperately trying to post more often around here? Because even though I would rate all of my posts a D- this week, at least I slapped them up here, and that’s half the battle. Go me! With that, it’s time for the weekend update:

To which I say, I don’t have a weekend update right now. Or, I do, but I can’t share it here, because there is a surprise party involved and shhhhhhh. Other than that, this weekend we have to get a pumpkin and wings for Jane’s Halloween costume (she’s going to be a princess fairy ballerina, obvs) , do homework with Jane, and continue to celebrate my everlasting 39th birthday, this time with my in-laws. I like to keep the party going for at least a month, you know? And who am I to refuse lunch and cake and presents? I may be many things, but I am not rude.
What are you up to?
SIDE NOTE HAVING NOTHING TO DO WITH WEEKEND STUFF BUT NOT WORTHY OF ITS OWN POST:Get this - I was just looking at Jane's school notices this week, and saw that she has November 6, 12, 22 and 23 off, and early dismissal November 19, 20 and 21. OMG. I had no idea that when she started school, she'd barely be going to school. Do you think they'd notice if I stuffed her in my purse and brought her to work? Working moms for the win, once again!

Thursday, October 11, 2012

save the date.

When I was younger, I used to always make sure I had something to look forward to. A vacation, a day trip, a show…something on the calendar that I was really psyched about, that had me counting down the days. Easy enough, right? But it’s also very easy to slide into a schedule of day-to-day drudgery - work, kid stuff, chores, appointments -you know the drill. And I'm realizing that’s just not acceptable, you know?

With that, I present my list of epic things I’m looking forward to over the next month:
*Trip to NYC in a couple of weeks. Haven’t been there since my tweet up with these three! And I miss it big time.
*A belated Canadian Thanksgiving dinner hosted by two of my favorite friends, Todd and Alan. Alan is making his triumphant return back to the States after six months working in Germany. Yay Alan!
*A surprise party I’m going to this weekend, and although I’m certain the guest of honor doesn’t read this blog, that’s all I’ll say about that.
*Halloween! Because, duh.
*Election Day! Nerdy to the maximum extreme, I know, but even though I find this race gut-wrenching and acid reflux-inducing, election day is super-exciting to me.
What good stuff is on your calendar?

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

what (not) to wear.

At the end of every season, like clockwork, I get the urge to burn every last item of my clothing. I get so incredibly sick of everything in my closet and drawers. So I paw through everything, and do a major purge. I just did this the other day, and I have two giant garbage bags full of clothes ready to drop off at Goodwill in my car right now.
I’m pretty harsh with my (fairly pathetic) inventory of clothes. At this point, if I haven’t worn it once during the season, it’s going to Goodwill. Even if it still has the tags on it. I impulse buy cheap clothes a lot, and end up with lots of things that never looked right on me in the first place. Add in the fact that a large percentage of my current inventory fit me before losing 20 pounds this spring, and I’m pretty much screwed at the moment in terms of what (or what not) to wear.
Weekends are easy. I have my uniform of jeans and sweaters or whatever. Let’s be real – I don’t live a fancy life. Nearly 100% of the time, jeans are just fine for my weekends, and Fridays during the work week. I actually do have a party to go to this weekend that is requiring a little bit more than that, and it’s sent me into a little bit of a tailspin.
But right now I barely have anything to wear to work. I have a total of one (1) (ONE) pair of pants that fit decently. I have a couple of dresses that can be transitioned from summer to fall with tights and boots, like I’m wearing today. But I definitely need some more choices – or I will literally be wearing the same exact outfits week after week.
As I get older (knock, knock, knockin’ on forty's door), I find myself wanting more quality than quantity in terms of what I wear. I haven’t put this into action yet, but I do have some money to spend on clothes that Greg gave me for my birthday (that I can FINALLY spend because TD Bank FINALLY OFFICIALLY gave me my stolen money back today! Whoo!!). And I think, this time around, I’m going to get a couple of really good quality items (boots, new pants, possibly a new coat) rather than a whole bunch of new things from, say, Old Navy, which never look that great and, frankly, are a little bit young for me at this point. I rarely buy anything decent for myself because most of my money goes towards Target trips and stuff for Jane and grocery shopping and BORING. It is extremely rare that I splurge on myself.
At the end of the day, I think I’m aiming for a really reduced wardrobe, but one that actually looks good and lasts. And doesn’t look like I’m trying to fit in with the college crowd (was it my wrinkles or my 5-year-old that gave me away??).
What are you wanting to add to your closet these days? Links, please!

Tuesday, October 09, 2012

apparently I like writing about fall.

It is so definitely fall here these days. After a several-days-long standoff with Greg, I finally turned on the heat yesterday. He was very determined not to turn it on until November 1, but when we woke up to a 55-degree house on Monday, he caved. I’ve been hearing the winter ahead is going to be a rough one, and I am so very extremely happy that we bought a generator after the Great Snowpocalypse of Snowtober 2011. I can’t believe it was just under a year ago that we had 2 feet of snow on the ground and we were out of power for a week. God, that sucked.
And I, a lover of summer and all things hot and sandy and beachy and sunny, dare admit that I’m happy fall is here. Last week was so humid and GROSS and wet I felt like my whole house smelled like dog because humidity has such a wonderful way of bringing out the delicate scents of Jimmy and Junior (and by “delicate” I mean “DOG with CAPITAL LETTERS”). I mean, it’s October. I shouldn’t be contemplating putting the air conditioning on, you know?
Today I’m wearing a new sweater from Banana Republic that my mom got me for my birthday and now that it looks like I will FINALLY be refunded the money that was stolen from me two weeks ago, I plan on buying some new black boots this week and maybe some other new things. I’m ready for scarves and boots and sweaters, I believe. I think.
But I am not – repeat – NOT ready for snow. No repeats this October, OK, Mother Nature?
Note: I know this is kind of a shitty blog post, but I’m trying to get back into it and just putting up whatever is in my head at the moment. Bear with me!

Tuesday, October 02, 2012

and now it's October, just like I wanted.

In August, as kindergarten loomed closer and closer, I remember saying, “I just want it to be October.”
Not because I wanted to rush the end of summer – or my BIRTHDAY – but I wanted Jane’s first month of school and my new flipped work schedule to have already happened, so we’d be fully immersed in our new schedule so I could stop worrying about it. I wanted a better idea of what our new reality is, at least until summer (don’t ask me what our schedule will look like then; I have absolutely no idea. And you would think, DUH, of course not, it’s only October, but I already have parents asking me what camps Jane is going to do next summer and it’s enough to make your head explode.)
And here we are. The month is over. We are immersed. And so far, so good. But what a change. Daycare was such a wonderful thing – if I had a doctor’s appointment, or just wanted to run quick to Target after work, or I had to help my mom with something, or I didn’t feel good, I could just leave Jane there for a little bit longer. No biggie. But school doesn’t let you do that, see. School is very particular about you not leaving your kid there for longer than they are supposed to be there, lest you hear from the Department of Children and Families. So now Jane comes with me everywhere, pretty much. (Except the doctor. I will not let this happen. I know there are other mothers who take their kids to all of their personal appointments, but I am not one of them. I would like to have my EKG or lady exam or what have you IN PEACE. That’s AMANDA TIME. Sad but true.)
So our mornings are full of chores, usually. Cleaning, library, shopping – things like that. I need to get her fed with lunch and out the door to the bus stop by 11:15. After the bus comes I drive off to work – I basically trail the bus for about a mile or so until it turns one way and I turn the other. Once I’m out of work, I’m right back to school to pick Jane up from her after-school program. Then it’s general mayhem, dinner, bath, TV, books, bed.
There’s not much me time these days (save for the doctor’s visits, of course). It’s something to get used to. I’m not saying it’s bad – we all know how I like to be busy - it’s just different. It’s also sometimes hard to feel like my brain isn’t all melty by the time I get to work at 11:45, after parenting for the previous six hours. Tylenol is my friend.
ETA: This next paragraph is super-random.
September ramped up other things as well – theater, dance class, PTO. I volunteered to co-chair the PR committee for Jane’s school. The variety show my theater group was going to put up in October has now been moved to December. I don’t have Jane’s Halloween costume yet (she will be a butterfly fairy princess. You heard right.) I’m off to NYC for the weekend in a couple of weeks. I miss it. I just plowed through my book club book over the past two days because we have a meeting on Friday. We read The Financial Lives of the Poets. Loved. I’m trying to exercise again – totally got off track after vacation in July. I need a pre-holiday detox, need to get healthy so I can eat all of the cookies I want come December.
How’s your October looking?