Archive of ‘adventures in momland’ category

Five Things I Almost Wrote About (While I Wasn’t Writing Anything).

Merry Christ… err, I mean Happy New Y… what? It’s almost February already? Well, shoot. It’s been a while, hasn’t it? I swear, this blog isn’t dead. It’s just been the low woman on the totem pole while I’ve been spreading my words in far too many places.

Happy Coldest Winter Ever Thought Bubble

So let’s just get caught up, shall we? Here are the top five things I’ve wanted to write about (but haven’t found the words).

I finished my book. 

Let me say that again. I FINISHED MY BOOK. Draft two, that is. After adding oh, 20,000 words or so, nitpicking every little scene, and doubting my every literary decision, I sent it off to Harlequin Headquarters, where it awaits judgement. And that’s all I’m going to say about that, because thinking about it makes me nervous.

I survived the holidays without a single bout of illness.

What’s the big deal, you ask?  Of  the five Christmases since Tori was born, this was the first one that I was healthy enough to appreciate. I guess the universe decided I needed a break after giving me a particularly virulent case of the stomach flu AND a broken knee last Christmas (and, for those of you who have never tried to worship at the porcelain altar while being completely unable to bend your leg, let me just tell you: it was unpleasant).

I arrived at my parents’ house on Christmas Eve without a single one of my daughter’s gifts.

Yep, you heard that right. After spending a month agonizing over finding the perfect gifts, we forgot the whole damn box in the garage. And my parents’ house? Is seven hours away. When the discovery was made, there was a lot of finger pointing, tear wiping, and nose blowing, followed by a panicked trip to Target. Thank God Target was celebrating the lord’s birth by making their workers stay until midnight. We found plenty of toys (more, actually than we had originally planned on giving her) but no Furbies. Which was the one thing she asked Santa for. The one we wrote an extra special letter to tell him about after she forgot to remind him while sitting on his lap.

Side note: we gave her the Furby when we got home. In the four weeks since, she has played with it exactly twice. Sure am glad I worried about that one.

I served myself an extra heaping of vegetarianism-induced holiday guilt.

I hate to be a bother. I really do. Especially at the holidays, when everyone’s already stressed and working far too hard trying to put together the perfect meal. But, I just don’t eat meat anymore. Won’t. Which meant that both my mother and mother in law felt they had to knock themselves out providing me with alternatives. Which was awesome and very appreciated. But man, I felt like a bona fide pain in the ass.

I’m going to Disney World… the week of my daughter’s dance recital.

We’ve been talking about making the trip for 18 months now. And we finally  found a week that would work (both from a budgetary and scheduling standpoint). Except…there’s this little thing called her yearly dance recital happening at the same time. Wanna talk about self-inflicted guilt? There’s another heaping dose for you. She doesn’t care. Would rather go to Disney (what kid wouldn’t?). But I feel like a shit.

I’m sure I’ll get over it though. I’m certainly not spending all this money to not enjoy myself!

And that’s that. The things that are occupying my brain while I try not to turn into a popsicle. I mean, seriously. This weather? Sucks. May can’t get here fast enough…

In the meantime, I guess I’ll start writing another book.


Why I Hate (Other People’s) Kid’s Birthday Parties.

There’s nothing my daughter loves more than to get an invitation to a birthday party.

Birthday cake by Roland via flickr

“Mommy, my friend’s having a birthday party! Can I go? Please?”

Of course I have to say yes. What kind of meanie says no? But I wish I could. Say no, that is.

Why? Well, I’m no good at parties. Never have been. Never will be.

When I am the one who’s invited, I can usually find a person (or four) that I know, and attach myself to them for the duration. But at a kid’s party? All bets are off.

Usually, I don’t even know what the kid looks like. I don’t know what her mom  looks like. Or even what her name is. Nope, I’m stuck making awkward small talk with complete strangers.

And as bad as I am at parties? I’ve even worse with strangers. Especially multiple strangers. And when faced with multiple strangers on a Saturday afternoon, after an exhausting work week, and without a drop of alcohol in sight? God help us all.

I tend to close up. Fold up. And shut down.

But that’s not even the worst of it.

I spend the whole time worrying about my daughter.

I don’t hover. That doesn’t do her any good. But I do worry. Endlessly.

As an introvert (formerly known as the Shy Kid), I want her to have an easier time with social situations. I want her to be at the center of the action. I want her to make friends effortlessly, socialize naturally, and never know a hint of shyness.

So when I see her hovering on the edges (or worse, afraid to engage at all), it breaks my heart a little. Okay, a lot.

I want to rush right in there and fix it for her. Push her into the middle. Make sure she has fun.

But I don’t. She’s got to learn to do things on her own.

Recently, we were at a party, and she was hovering on the edges, uncomfortable. But then one of her friends – a friend who’s a year older and who has recently gone off to kindergarten – grabbed her hand and said, “come on, Tori!”

And she pulled her into the fun. Then the whole group started looking out for her. The bigger girls even helped her down a particularly scary slide when she balked.

She had a grand time.

It did my heart good to see it.

She’s not me.

And just because I remember childhood as being a little more cruel, filled with kids who were a little less big hearted, doesn’t mean she will experience things the same way.

It pays to remember that.

Who knows? She might just grow up to be the life of the party.

At the very least, I hope she doesn’t learn to be afraid of them. That just sucks.


Because There’s No “Me” in Busy.

I had big plans this summer. Big, big plans.

I was finally going to lose those last 20 pounds. Get my knee back up to full-strength and start running again. Get my garden looking like a patch of greenery worthy of my mother’s daughter (she’s a master gardener, yo). And, oh yeah, get on a regular blogging schedule again.

But you know what they say about the best laid plans…

Do you?

I’m too tired to remember.

Instead, I’ve been working until my brain’s numb (in a good way, but still).  I’ve been trying to emulate an attentive parent (but not always succeeding). And, of course, trying to soak up a little summer fun.

But in general, my days could best be described by the following collage:

busy days

Thank goodness fall’s coming. And with it, the beginning of a new year. After all, you know what they say…when at first you don’t succeed…put it off until tomorrow (or something like that).

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