Archives for February 2010

Weekly Winners, Week Ending 2/27/10

weeklywinnersFor more Weekly Winners, go check out the Linky at I AM LOTUS.


This is a Snickers cupcake. Yes, it’s pretty much as good as it looks. Maybe even better.


Laundry day, FTW! Not my favorite thing to do, but necessary evil unless you want to be stinky.

Snow ball fights are snowy.


Snow ball fights are also supposed to end when one of the participants is no longer outside.


She looks cute in rented shoes, but she bowls about as well as I do (*cough* Not well *cough*)011

I didn’t feel good. Also, YES, not all Saltines are created equal.


Fridays are donut day for my kids. I don’t even really like donuts, but this one is tempting.

SarahTwo_180of365_022710Dream Create Inspire. Always.

Dear Michigan Drivers (And Runners. And Tractor People)…

SnowTractorDear People On The Roads In Michigan (Or, y’know, my little corner of it):

I know it hasn’t been that long since I last complained about your performance on the road, but I have to tell y’all – It’s FEBRUARY. By now, you should have summoned up your muscle memory with regard to handling your vehicle (or yourself) on the snow and ice and slush.

SHOULD HAVE are the operative words here. You. Should. Have.

But you didn’t.

This morning, I dashed out of the house alone to grab some coffee at Starbucks before taking my kids to gymnastics – we got a bunch of snow yesterday, the roads were slick. The whole way to the coffee shop, I was behind the salt truck at super-slow speeds (itching for coffee, driving at a snail’s pace. Not fun). In fact, the roads were filled with plows and salt trucks. Know why?


So, when I was driving home and I came to the top of a small hill and there were two RUNNERS coming towards me in my lane and a car in the oncoming lane and no shoulder and no way to brake without sliding in the slush, I got a lil bit freaked out.

Runners: I get the endorphin high, I get that it feels good to work out. However, when snow covers the shoulder of the road and there are more plows and county vehicles out than passenger vehicles, take that as a sign: The roads are bad. Stay inside. When the sun comes out and the road clears, getcha run on. In the mean time, it’s probably safer on your couch wrapped in a Snuggie watching the Food Network.

After gymnastics, the girls and I decided we’d run some errands. Buckled safely in the car, we drove (cautiously, of course) on our way. An… older dude… plowing his driveway with an antiquated tractor backed out of his driveway, across both lanes of the road, into my lane where I had to swerve and brake so as not to hit him, then cross my fingers that I would stop skidding before slamming into a snow bank.

Fortunately, all’s well.

But, dude. WHY did you do that? Why didn’t you stop? Y’all need to LOOK FOR ONCOMING TRAFFIC when people don’t have normal braking power (Actually, in general, I hear looking out for traffic is a pretty good idea).

By the time my heart stopped racing from that near-miss, I just wanted to get home put on my fuzzy slippers and avoid the roads until the spring thaw.

People on the roads of Michigan, I cannot stay inside for the next several months waiting for the snow to melt, so you really REALLY need to pay attention to what you’re doing. In return, I promise that I will keep driving safely. AND, if you really drive well, I won’t make fun of your bumper stickers.

image source

Thursday Ten: Whoa Nelly It’s Busy Edition

1. Work is busy this week. My daughters’ schedules are busy this week. This means that I’m pretty close to pulling my hair out. Me, I’m just trying to get stuff done and remember which day is “Crazy Hair Day” at which kid’s school.

2. Also? I’m sick. I have some sort of respiratory bug that finally kicked my butt on Tuesday. Doc took one listen to my breathing, said it didn’t sound so great and gave me some antibiotics. So, along with chaotic schedules I also have a fever and a cough (the cough is pretty near gone, though, so YAY FOR Z PACK!).

3. I’m adjusting to the hair cut. I’ve worn it curly a few times now, and I think my general feeling is, it’s okay, but I like it better blown out straight. The problem is that I think the stylist did too much razor cutting to my hair to thin it out — so I don’t like the way the ends feel. I don’t think there is a fix really aside from just letting it grow and making sure to ix-nay on the razor cutting next time.

4. Sooooo, USA/Canada hockey – Did you watch? Admittedly, I’m not an avid-Olympic-watcher, but I watched this game and it was AH-MAZE-ING. I love hockey, though. I’ve heard talk from people saying they hope that this spurns people’s interest in the sport beyond the Olympics – and while that would be AWESOME, I don’t see that happening (Then again, in Michigan, people are already fairly interested in hockey… be curious to know what it’s like in states that don’t have the Red Wings).

5. This morning when I was driving I had a strange random craving for a grilled chicken sandwich on one of those greasy buttery crispy kaiser rolls with lettuce and spicy mustard and red onion slices and a plate of french fries, and why yes, I might have PMS, why are you asking?

6. I finished reading “Still Alice” and I loved it – was SO moved and also, learned a lot about Alzheimers. What a truly horrifying progressively debilitating illness. Part of me always figured it was – but, to see the book lay it out – the early onset of the disease in the main character. Whoa. I really enjoyed the book. You might wanna check it out.

7. Pumpkin has been asking every ten minutes when her big sister will be getting home from school. I am SO ready for her to be able to tell time.

8. Project Runway night. Okay, I kinda liked the kiddo challenge last week. I know the designers freak out a bit when they’re not working with their runway-perfect models, but I loved seeing the kid fashions on the runway. Having a kid in that age group, I kind of knew what would and wouldn’t fly. I may not always understand the judges’ feedback on the fashions for adults – but I got it for the kids. There’s somethin’, I guess.

9. When I’m sick, I want sweets and comfort food and mass quantities of saltines. Wandering through the store on Tuesday, I picked up some of the Jell-O Mousse Temptations. They were pretty good. Pretty rich and knocked the edge off my sweet-tooth, thank goodness. They’re pretty low in calories so if you wanted to eat all of them in the package, it wouldn’t do TOO much damage.

10. In desperate need of comfort food, I’m making spaghetti and meatballs for dinner tonight. Now, that doesn’t mean dinner is going to be GOOD, mind you, just that I need an excuse for shoveling a plate of carbs into my face. What is your go-to comfort food when you’re feeling “blah”?

Do You Have a Bucket (List)?

I don’t have a bucket list.  I don’t have a list of things I want to do before I die – goals that are both realistic or pie-in-the-sky. Don’t have one. Sure, I have my 101 List – and I love it – because there are things on that list that I’m accomplishing that I might not push myself to do otherwise (because I can assure you, there is no other reason why I would ever go to McDonald’s).

But, I like the idea of a bucket list.

When I asked some friends what was on their bucket list – I found that they have great goals and dreams. Rachel wants a picture of her and her husband in front of the Eiffel Tower.  Malia and Alli want to do some travelling – lots of it!

A few weeks ago, Jules (she of the Cinderella Project fame) asked me if I had ever seen “The Buried Life” on MTV. At the time, I hadn’t seen the show – and somehow, I managed to miss it the next few weeks. Last week, though, I finally remembered. And then I finally saw it last week.

On last week’s episode, the guys entered a krump contest. And I laughed so hard – and I may have krumped around my house for thirty minutes afterwards, earning myself the nickname: Mother Krumper. (It wasn’t pretty, by the way. Apparently, I lack krump skills. SIGH).

These guys have a list of 100 things they want to do before they die. And they’re doing them. And they’re doing BIG things and they’re doing little things, and it kind of makes me want to make a list of my own. And I think I’ll start with their #4: Start a dance in a public place.

Do you have a bucket list? If you do, what kind of things are on it?

Weekly Winners, February 21, 2010


It’s time for this week’s Weekly Winners – and you should be sure to check out more over at I AM LOTUS. This is a week where I took plenty of underwhelming photos, but – it’s also a week where I chopped several inches of hair off, so we’ll start with…





My eye (I actually took this shot for a second 365 project I’m doing where I take a self portrait of some sort each day – which is already tedious and I’m only three weeks in. Will it last? Ahem. Probably not).


And finally. One picture that isn’t me or my wrinkly eyes… A light fixture from a restaurant where we had lunch the other day. The light was more interesting than the food.

Also, the blinds… Here’s hoping next week my pictures aren’t so self-absorbed.


Thursday Ten: Still Adjusting Edition

1. I’ve now washed and “done” my hair for the first time since getting it cut and I’m still not shedding any tears so much as I’m thinking to myself, “Well, crap. I need a new straightening iron.” It’s definitely not salon-straight today, but… It’ll do. It’s still a fun cut and the length is a good one for me. Not being able to rely on le-ponytail is rough, but I needed to have that option taken away anyway. There is such a thing as TOO MUCH PONYTAIL.

2. I started reading “Still Alice” last night and so far? It’s pretty good. WHEW. I’m told that the way we’ll select the next book is that we’ll all submit suggestions on a slip of paper and one will be randomly chosen. Any book suggestions that might be conducive to good discussions?

3. I have GOT to do something about my Google Reader. I left it (largely) neglected for awhile and now I need to make it more manageable. Two questions – A) Do you use Google reader or something else?  B) Who are your favorite reads on the internet? Give ’em some love – if there’s someone you really enjoy reading regularly, maybe I’d like ’em too. Always nice to pass on a little looooove.

4. I realized when I was blow drying my hair last night that I have had the same hair dryer since 1994. I’m not exaggerating or kidding – wish I was. I can’t think of any reason why I haven’t replaced it except, well… It still works. That’s nearly 16 years of hair drying magic. Dang.

5. Guitar lesson went so well today that I left with sore fingertips but a big smile on my face. To be able to actually hear my progress from week to wee is exciting. Still working on “Umbrella” – the Marie Digby version that my kids love so much. This is one that The Princess wanted me to learn, so… I am. But, I finally conquered the F chord (I play this a smidge differently than she does – using a capo on the first fret… Fewer bar chords that way).

6. Sooo, it’s OLYMPIC time. I wasn’t watching. Til last night. I flipped on the television while the snowboarding stuff was happening. Dang. Shaun White. That’s all I have to say. I really don’t care much about skiing or curling (but only because I don’t understand it – feel free to explain it to me, please) – but snowboarding? Whoa.

7. I haven’t purchased a lot of music – but I did buy some old school stuff inspired by the Blissdom Danceoff – and now my music collection once again features “Whoomp! There It Is” – I cannot believe I was lacking this song for so many years. Clearly now my collection is complete.

8. Yesterday I complained about the gray skies. Today there is sun. Lots of beautiful sun. Can I now complain about how I hate not having an arboretum of money trees in my backyard, because really my yard would look lovely with one.

9. Project Runway Night. Yeah. I’m a dork about it. I know.

10. By the time The Princess was four, she’d given up naps altogether, but Pumpkin still needs her daily nap BADLY. She was up at 5:30 this morning and hasn’t napped, so as you can imagine, we’re both teetering on the edge a bit right now. She has dissolved into two unexplained crying fits over a toy drum… I think. Oh what fun it is to be sleep deprived!

February – Where 28 Days Feels Like 100 Years

February makes me twitchy.

I enter January with a little bit of optimism, with a little bit of the whole “it’s a fresh new year” thing. I enter March with “spring is right around the corner” feeling.

Somehow, February always feels like it’s been snowing for seven months and it’ll be another fourteen years before I see the sun again. Exaggeration? Well, yeah, probably – but February means I’m tired of being cold, I’m tired of being in the house, I’m tired of gray skies, I’m tired of exercising on the treadmill versus outside (and I may be hardcore, but I am not hardcore enough that I will go out walking or running in the snow for exercise, thankyouverymuch).

February runs me down, makes me tired, makes me long for change.

February makes me walk into a hair salon with this picture, asking for this haircut.


Nearly four inches of hair shorter, my head feels lighter – but so does my mood. I’m still enjoying the smooth blow-out the stylist gave me last night – I anticipate once I let it go curly there may be some moments of frustration (but I also anticipate that I’ll be okay with that once I go shopping for some yummy smelling new product and perhaps a big curling iron for waves that are a bit more loose than my curls). I can’t rely on my standby ponytail-copout-hairdo that wasn’t doing me any favors, moodwise – because I can’t even scrape my hair into a ponytail – it’s THAT short.

So if in a few days (or hours), I start missing my ponytail and I tell you how much I miss my long hair, remind me of this lightness. Remind me that I feel okay looking in the mirror today. Remind me that there’s a light in my face I haven’t seen since probably September. And then tell me to shut up and quit complaining.

I’ve Never Wanted to Be In a Book Club

I read.

I read A LOT.

I read whatever I want, whenever I want and sometimes it’s fluffy and silly and plotless and sometimes it’s deep and my heart is moved and my soul is touched by the words on the pages. I read for myself. I read for all the places I discover between the covers of a book, for all the adventures, for the laughs. I read for me.

I read for solace. I read for relaxation. I read to decompress at the end of the day. I read knowing that if I hate a book, I can stop reading it at any time and the only person I have to answer to is myself  (“The Count of Monte Cristo” kicked my ass, I’m sorry to say. I am not sorry to say that I gave it away after reading 35 excruciating pages to someone who will hopefully enjoy it more than I).

So, why on earth did I agree to join a book club?

I have no idea. But I did and our first book, Still Alice, sits on my desk waiting for me to dive in and get started.

Part of me is afraid I won’t like this book. That I won’t find connections to the characters or that I’ll hate the plot or that I’ll want to slam it shut and hurl it across the room after five pages and I won’t have anything to contribute at the book club besides, “Hey! These crackers are fantastic! Can I have another glass of wine, please?” I’ve never been to a book club – do they actually talk about books?

What I do know is that I’m looking forward to the connections with friends. I’m looking forward to opening a new book (please be good, please be good, please be good) and I’m actually curious how this book club stuff works and if I can actually converse intelligently about anything I’ve read or if I will, instead, be the watcher of the hors d’oeuvres and guzzler of drinks with pink umbrellas.

Weekly Winners


Lotus from I Am Lotus has an awesome weekly bloggedy-dealy-bob where you post some of your favorite photos of the week. I’m jumping in this week.

Driving home from the airport. Is this thing a sundog?


Blissdom swag. I love this Lisa Leonard necklace.

038What better job for me at The Princess’s class Valentine’s Party than manning the cookie decorating table?

SarahTwo_166of365_021310We’re all just sunflowers looking for a little light.

A Day In The Life


It was one of those days. You know the ones – the kind that begin too early after a night of bad sleep. The kind that begins with a child asking you if it’s time to be awake yet. You send the child back to her bedroom knowing that there’s no way you’ll be able to return to sleep, so you lie in bed, covers yanked up to your chin willing yourself to just grasp five more minutes of sleep. Just five more.

But you can’t.

You get up and brush your teeth and plod downstairs to start the day. There are cups of chocolate milk to be poured, lunches to be packed. You need to get your kids motivated and moving so that they’re dressed and ready for school when it’s time for them to go. One climbs uneventfully onto the school bus, the other gets buckled into your car so you can take her to school.

She’s unhappy – it’s her gloves, her scarf. It’s everything, it’s nothing. Urging her to use her big girl voice doesn’t work and neither does trying to drown the sound with radio static. What is it? you think to yourself. I don’t know how to fix this! I don’t know what’s wrong.

She wails away while you drive through the preschool parking lot and you find that in addition to being extremely cold, snow has the unfortunate side effect of making it impossible to find a parking spot at the school. Frustrated and gritting your teeth, you drive around to the back of the school to park illegally in the school bus drop off area.

Your child is still screaming.

You carry her screaming, propped on your left hip. Her backpack clutched in your right hand, you see the other mothers looking at you. You know the look because you’ve given it – the look that says, “Oh thank god it’s not MY child.” You paste a smile on your face, stubbornly refusing to let them see how flustered you are, how beneath your scarf you are sweating, how your pulse is racing because what are they going to think of you, the mother with the screaming four year old?

You distract her, get her settled in for the day and you nearly flee the building. The ice keeps you from sprinting back to the car because you are drained. So so drained. You feel like a failure – this is your most important job and how come your child was crying, what was wrong with her scarf, why couldn’t you make it better, don’t you know how to do this stuff by now?

Later, you pick her up from school. She’s happy, she’s made a candy necklace. She shares it with you and she shows you all the Valentines she received from her friends. She got a lot of candy and she shares it, unprompted, with her older sister and you’ll get a fluttery feeling in your heart – the one that you get when they’re kind to each other.

At the end of the day, she works on the alphabet flashcards with dad and she knows all the letters, except J – and she flies through the rest of them like it’s the easiest thing in the world. A gleeful smile plays on her lips and she’s proud of herself, so proud.

You’re proud, too.

Later, you’ll tuck her in and she’ll talk to you about the alphabet and her sister and what are you doing this weekend. She’ll pause and look at your face and she’ll say, “Why do you smile at me too much? You’re always smiling at me.”

You’ll smile wider and tell her it’s because you just love her so much. Her smile brightens and she says, “I just love you too much, too.”