Monday, December 26, 2011

The hangover

I woke up with a hangover this morning. Between the peanut butter balls and chocolate-decadent-kick-me-in-the-head bars, I am in gastrointestinal distress. The roof of my mouth is raw. I'm pretty sure there is a hole there from too much sugar. I've tried seeing it. I angled a compact under my chin with my mouth wide open in front of the bathroom mirror.

My consolation today is I don't have dessert binges too often anymore. Some families ski, camp, or play board games together. Our family's hobby was having dessert before bed. I held to the conviction that it was never too late for dessert. At 9 or 10 at night one of us would ask, "What's for dessert?" And I'd whip up a pan of brownies or a double batch of chocolate chip cookies. 

I think I became a dessert freak from growing up with two older brothers who devoured everything. You had to be quick, or you wouldn't get any. To get my fair share after I made something, I resorted to hiding it. But I blew my favorite hiding spot when my brother caught me kneeling in front of the couch with an apple pie.

I became more creative. I'd hide pans in the coat closet, in my mother's lingerie drawer, under the pile of clothes in my room. Sometimes the best spot was the most obvious.  One humid summer I hid a rhubarb cake in the bottom oven. We only used the top oven. I forgot it was there. That fall my mom opened the door to put in a roast and found a pan of purple and green fuzz.

I don't hide food anymore, but sometimes I still go on a short-lived bender. Today I'm nursing the effects with lots of water. If you've been junking out on sweets and have gut rot too, don't feel bad. The cure is simple. Just quit. We need to hoist our five-pounds-heaver legs back up over the side of the wagon. We might get the DTs, but we'll make it. Onward ho, my friends...

Photo from

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Angels and almond bark

At two. I was an angel.
When we're all grown up we spend a lot of our time at Christmas remembering when we were kids. Or if our kids are grown, remembering when they were little. At least that's what I do. It's what's fun about Christmas.

This year I sat through our church's children's Christmas program having flashbacks of when our kids were up there. It was bittersweet. I can distinctly remember when Amber was an angel. She was seven. She came out and was achingly beautiful.  I got a lump in my throat.

I remember Paige at four wearing a red velvet dress. She had the biggest smile and blond curls. I loved her so much my heart hurt. 

The year Landon was baby Jesus.
Dave and I were Mary and Joseph one year, and Landon was baby Jesus. He was seven months old and sat in my lap wearing only a diaper. His sisters nicknamed him Spike. I don't think he exactly looked like baby Jesus with his spiky hair, but for that matter Dave and I wouldn't have passed for Joseph and Mary either. For one, we were about 20 years too old.  But Landon was a little ham. He was so cute and funny. I felt blessed to have my sweet little boy.

I remember being in Christmas programs. I, too, was an angel. I was two. The littlest people in Christmas programs are the cutest and funniest. But the thing is these little guys are so sincere.  They're not meaning to be funny. Adults just can't help laughing their heads off when they get on stage. I vaguely remember singing, and people laughing. I was confused. We were doing what our teachers had told us to do, and then everyone laughed at us. I didn't get it.

Random, but I've also been thinking of almond bark. My mom made almond bark candy at Christmas time. I never saw almond bark any other time of the year. It wasn't particularly my favorite, but it was an oddity. I mean what is almond bark anyway?

I'm a purist when I bake. I don't substitute for the real stuff--like margarine for butter, Cool Whip for real whipping cream. Or in this case, almond bark for white chocolate. But after Dave looked all over Rochester trying to find white chocolate for me, he came home asking why I just didn't use almond bark.

I started using it this year for the first time. Basically, it's cheap flavored partially hydrogenated oil. From what I can tell, there are absolutely no almonds in it. It's freaking awesome. Melt it in the microwave, then pour it over everything in sight--pretzels, ritz peanut butter sandwiches, puffed corn. We've gone through three bags of almond bark popcorn already and we haven't even reached Christmas.

I've gained five pounds this month eating almond bark. I'm not too worried. I'll lose it once almond bark season is over.

Hope you, dear friends, are enjoying your memories of Christmas past and making sweet memories for the ones ahead.

God bless.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Cheaters and tweezers

Nothing like a hair on your chin to keep you humble. The first time I spotted a hair sprouting from the side of my face I considered it some kind of freakish fluke. The second time I saw one I plucked it so fast I told myself that it didn't count. But after this last incident, I can no longer deny it. I am getting chin hair.
Not by the hair on my chinny chin chin.

This is the worst. I used to joke about old ladies with their chin hairs. I even mentioned the topic in previous posts.  Serves me right. I never thought it would happen to me. Or if it did, I'd be 80.

A few days ago I went to my hair stylist, Sarah. It had been awhile since I had been in and she was giving me the works--haircut, color and eyebrow wax. I told her about my horror in finding the mutant hair. We had a good laugh.

But since we were on the subject of facial hair and my head was already tilted back in the sink, I asked her to check my "beauty mark" (which really is a mole on my chin) to make sure there wasn't anything less than beautiful there. Like a hair. She checked.

No, she didn't see any hairs. Then she stopped. And leaned in close. "Oh." What's oh?  "But, you do have..." Alarmed, I popped  my head up from the sink. What? What do I have?!

She got out a tweezers and yanked. A hair. Under my chin. Satisfied, she held it up. "See," she showed me. "Interesting. There's a little curl to it."

Aaaaaccccch!  I felt woozy. This was just too, too much. So, how long had it been there? I hadn't seen it that morning when I was assessing the state of my face. Was it like a hybrid hair that morphed within a matter of hours? Or had it been there all along, but I just couldn't see it without my cheater reading glasses?

I was thoroughly disgusted. But I felt a little better when I discussed The Hair with the ladies at work the next day.Turns out about everyone my age and older has had the nasty little discovery. We all agreed you can't see the little suckers. Only when you get in the car and look in your overhead mirror can you see them. One gal said she keeps a magnifying glass on hand at all times.

I had thought I was over my midlife crisis. I had come to terms with my children marrying and moving away, my turning gray and getting age spots. But having chin hairs? Really? I refuse to make peace with chin hairs. From here on in, it's war.

I'm keeping my tweezers and cheaters stashed in the car.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

It's no secret

Women don't keep secrets very well.  Like that's a secret.

Women might keep their friends' secrets, but they really suck at keeping their own secrets. Why do I know this? Because when I have something about myself that I want kept secret, I tell my 19 closest girlfriends. But only after I've vowed them to secrecy.

I am not the only woman who does this.  It's not fair, really. How come you get to tell your secret, but no one else can? 

Sometimes friends just tell you too many things.  It's too hard to keep track of what you can tell and what you can't.

One of my friends does this to me all the time. "I have something to tell you. But you can't ever tell anyone. Ever. Not even Dave. Will you promise?" So, I promise. I won't tell anyone. Ever. But then I get paranoid. My memory's not all that good. Eventually I could forget the thing was a secret and will tell someone, maybe not today or next month, but like a year from now.

And that next week, I'll hear a group of ladies talking about the very thing I was supposed to keep a secret. I ask them where they heard this. They heard it from my friend who told me not to tell anyone.

Now when she tells me she's going to tell me something but I can't tell anyone, I hold up my hand and say, "Are you sure you want to tell me? I can't keep secrets."  Invariably, she'll tell me.

It's not that I can't keep a secret. I can. My best friends have shared some things I will take to my grave.  And they know a few things about me I know they will keep forever. But that's different. Those are things that you know are just too important to ever share. Plus, we have dirt on one another.

Husbands are the safe bet
If you really need to tell a secret, tell your husband. Guys don't talk like women do. They are the safest bet.  When I tell my husband not to tell anyone, he'll look at me like I'm crazy. "Why would I want to tell anyone?" And he's serious. It's one of the things I love most about him.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Follow the Drama

I went from being a skeptic of blogs (really...who wants to read about someone else's mundane life?) to becoming a follower of several blogs to having two of my own. The other is Losing It..A mom's story of weight loss and transformation:

Blog hog that I am, I'm living my life by what my next post will be. I check my stats... elated when I'm getting pageviews and so very sad when there aren't many hits.

Comments make me want to do snoopy kicks. I love getting comments. You can even say, "This post stunk." Although that would make me really bummed.

I love my followers, all eleven of them. Knowing people are following my blog makes me want to keep posting.  I don't mean to push you to follow my blog like I'm selling Amway, but if you want to, click on Join this Site in the blue rectangleSimple steps from there.

If you want more info, go to The advantage of being a follower is you can follow other blogs easily. All the blog updates will be posted in one place when you log into

My blog is here to make you laugh, if not at yourself then me. Blogging keeps me out of trouble but maybe I won't do it forever. I'll get the hint when I'm getting fewer and fewer pageviews. Or, when I'm done with my midlife crisis. Whichever comes first. I'll hang it up and quit posting. But for now, I'll keep blogging if you keep following.

P.S. I don't know why I posted the picture above. I just like it. I had a blast dancing like I was a kid--way more fun than a mom-of-the-bride has the right to have. Paige is doing her thing too. (She's the bridesmaid in the champagne dress.)

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Sunburns, undergarments and other regrets.

Tan beach bums.
I have a few regrets. Almost all have "but then" attached. Some are simply vain since I'm basically a vain person. If you've followed my blogs, you know this. Some are more run-of-the-mill.  Here are some of my but thens...

Not wearing sunblock. I didn't notice the sun damage until this year. I noticed my freckles were accelerating at an alarming rate. Actually, they're the size of a pencil eraser and are called age spots. I was a fry baby when I was younger. My face took the brunt of it. The skin under my arms--which wasn't touched by the sun--is as smooth and unmarked as a baby's bottom. If I would have been more careful and used sunblock, my face would look like a baby's butt.

I told Paige that when she reached my age, she might regret laying out. She asked, "Really, Mom? Do you regret your years of looking good and having all that fun in the sun?" Umm. Got me there. I may regret the results of sun damage, but then I had a heck of a good time.

I regret not wearing a better bra the first time I was pregnant. Let's just say, my figure lost some of its starch and was never the same afterwards. I don't know if it was an overabundance of pregnancy hormones or what, but I went from a generous size D to being a freak of nature. 

When my bosom inflated and overflowed every bra I bought, I got specially fitted at a department store. The salesperson thought I was an F. What? No way.  She got out the tape measure. Hmm. Nope, you have to be at an FF. Maybe even a G. Cripes. I would have to get the bra specially made. I told her not to bother. Once I delivered, it wouldn't fit. Well, after I had my baby, it was like letting air out of of balloons. You can imagine. But I don't blame you if you don't want to imagine.

I regret not getting the bra. But then, the great fall may have happened anyway. It's not so bad really. If you buy a steel-case bra, you can keep the girls elevated to where they belong. I've only found one bra that has that capability. It's going to be a sad, sad day if Bali ever discontinues it. I should buy enough of those babies to last me until I'm 90.

I regret not working out earlier. No matter how much I work on my arms, I still have granny flesh under my triceps. Landon says it's too late. I should've started sooner.  But then, I do look better than before I started. Besides any future grandchildren will have a ball jiggling them back and forth like I did to my grandma's.
I regret not encouraging my kids to wash dishes when they were young. That was very dumb on my part. They loved getting on chairs in front of the sink and washing dishes, soaking their shirts and floor. I looked forward to the day that my kids would be too big to stand on chairs. Well, they got big and didn't do dishes unless nagged. But then, now that they're moving out they do their own dishes. I miss them standing on chairs next to the sink. They were so darn adorable.

I have other regrets. Maybe not so vain. I regret the sins of my youth, but then I wouldn't have the life I have now. There would be only one regret that wouldn't have an upside. And that would be rejecting Christ. I'm eternally grateful that I don't have that regret.

So there you have it. I really don't have regrets. That's okay with me. How 'bout you? Do you have a few regrets, but then....?