It’s The Little Things

It’s the little things in life that bring the most pleasure. Sometimes it’s hard to see those little things, or even remember what they are, but once in a while, I get smacked in the face by one and I remember how great it is.

Last week, Baylie went to “Camp Mamie” which means she goes to her Godmother’s house to play for a little while and I set out to run a few errands.

On my way back from the last stop, a song I haven’t heard for a while came on the Ipod. The Killers’ All These Things That I’ve Done makes me think of the summer before Peter’s third year of law school. We were in Phoenix while he did a summer internship for a law firm. It was almost time to pack up and drive back to DC. I woke up to the clock radio playing this song and I was hooked. I had no idea what it was, but I couldn’t get it out of my head. I had to (embarrassingly) sing it for Peter so he could try to find it on Itunes. Once it was securely on my favorite playlist, I practically wore out my Ipod listening to it. That same week, Peter got a job offer from the firm he had been interning for. Suddenly it was like our entire future was clear; we were going to get to come home to Phoenix. We could think about where we would live and make plans for the following year instead of having to say “we’ll see where Peter gets a job and then we’ll see”.

When my sister Ali and I got our first car (a ’94 green Volvo named Alfie) our favorite thing to do was drive with the windows down and the music cranked up. The feeling of freedom was only amplified by the wind in your hair and the bass in the speakers.

Remembering that feeling, I rolled down all four windows and turned up The Killers to an embarrassingly loud level and drove.  And enjoyed the simplicity of  the sun and wind and memories.

Where Time Meets Creativity

When creative energy meets a quite space of time, it produces great blog posts, chapters in a book I hope to complete some day and many things checked off of my work to do list.

Getting these two things in the same place at the same time is not only tricky, it’s damn near impossible it seems these days. The result? Painstakingly painful posts requiring much more work than what the result would lead one to believe. No work done on a book other than dreams of what I will wear to the book signing and raised anxiety levels over the fact that my list is growing rather than shrinking.

My new goals? Sleep less, push to make the most of nap time and find an additional hour a day where I encourage the kiddo to play quietly while I get a few things done. Prioritize my to do list for life, for work and for myself and stick to it and not freak out when it doesn’t all get done some days (ha. I laughed when I wrote that one. But writing is the first step, yes?). Carve out more structured play time/learning time with Bay and not feel like a horrible mother when her big activities for the day are a trip to the grocery and vacuuming. And to take a deep breath.

iiiiiinnnnnnn aaaaaaannnnnndddddd oooooouuuutttttt

Sir, We GET IT

We live near a large park and in general have very active neighbors. I tend to see the same people out often in about a 1 mile radius around our house and especially jogging on the canal. I’ve noticed lately that I have seen the same guy running all over the place; near the mall, near the grocery, at the park, etc.

The reason I notice him is not for the reasons I think he would want to be noticed for. First, he always wears a beanie. It can be 60 degrees or 100+ and the guy always has on a beanie. Second, he’s never wearing a shirt. Third, he wears cargo shorts. And lastly but certainly not leastly, he has two LARGE Doberman Pincers on a joined leash tied around his waist.

The first time I saw this dude running by my car, my thought was “We get it! You workout! A lot! And you have tough dogs! You want everyone looking at you to think you’re tough too! But the dogs tied to your waist might be a touch overboard!”.

Every time I see him, I can’t help but think about what kind of person he is – because you can’t workout like that and not be a total and complete weirdo. I imagine him to be that guy in the office who is short and bald so he makes up for it by talking loudly and also condescendingly to his coworkers. He drives a BMW, but only makes $30k a year. He wears Ed Hardy shirts (when he does wear a shirt) and  he doesn’t have a conversation without texting on his blackberry.

In short, I hate this guy. It takes great strength to stop my car in front of him, roll down the window and scream “REALLY?!?!”. And on the outside chance someone reading The Goon Room knows Mr.Shirtless Waist Leash guy, do him a favor and give him the link to the blog. And a shirt. And a memo that says “enough already, we GET IT”.

Coupons Shmoopons

I keep seeing the commercials for this show called Extreme Couponing on TLC. Here’s the link:

Basically, these women go to crazy lengths to get multiple coupons which then lead to their entire grocery bill totalling $0. Meaning they have so many coupons, they don’t have to pay anything.

I do grab a few coupons here and there when I get them in the mail or from family members who don’t use them. My sister and I trade the leftovers from each Sunday’s paper and I end up with a little stack each week for the grocery. I refuse to buy anything that I don’t need or a brand I don’t like. If it’s not Jiffy Peanut Butter, I’m not interested.  Lately, I’ve had a few duplicates and I was very excited to live my own Extreme Couponing dream knowing that a few items on my list would be totally free. The money saving is just a bonus. Really, it’s turned into a challenge so saving money means duh, WINNING.

And here’s where I call bullshit on the Extreme Coupon movement. I have been to Safeway, Target, Fry’s and even (gasp) WalMart. And let me tell you, NONE OF THEM will take more than one coupon per item. Meaning if I buy one box of Truvia sweetener and I have three coupons, I can only use one coupon per box.

So how are these people doing it?! If WALMART won’t help me out, who will? Do these women stalk the cashier that they know either doesn’t know or  doesn’t care about the number of items to the number of coupons ratio?? That said, how are they buying 20 boxes of pasta for free? Are there coupons out there for the total cost of an item?? And who needs 20 boxes of pasta??

I guess my experiment goes down in the “failed” column. And I can stop trying to hoard extra coupons from family and friends and take a few dollars saved as a win. And leave the food hording, paper cut fingers, dumpster diving for tossed newspapers and cashier convincing to the “professionals”. You win ladies, you win.

Rainy Day Adventures

This past Saturday we had something we don’t see very often – rain! And the excitement of what will probably be one of the last cold, rainy days for many months gave way to some creative energy.

I heard much commotion coming from Baylie’s room while I was getting dressed. And when I went to investigate, I found this:

Peter and I both have great memories of fort building as kids. Inside, outside, with sheets, beach towels, quilts, whatever was handy. It seems that he hasn’t lost his touch. We spent a good hour playing, eating, reading and crawling in and out of the improvised shelter. Bay then spent another hour doing the same with Bear T. Dog. There were many tears when we had to deconstruct the new play area for nap time, so we left one sheet over her crib. It’s still there and I’m not sure we’re ever going to get it back.

A view from the inside:

Lack of Sleep is Funny Stuff

Peter and I have always each been chatty sleepers (apparently what is true in wakefulness is also true in sleep). We both tend to talk in our sleep and I have a habit of walking. It seems to get worse for both of us the less we sleep and or the more we have going on in our lives.

As a kid,  I repeatedly scared my mom by walking into her bedroom at night chasing foul balls. Playing second base obviously extended beyond the field and into my dreams. I would be chasing a grounder, running the bases or headed back to the dugout. I usually woke up at some point and stumbled, confused, back to bed. Later in life, I have dreams where I need to be somewhere so I go to the closet and get different clothes to put on. This was particularly bad in DC, I would wake up with piles of shirts next to the bed. The worst part is I tend to wake up somewhere in the middle of finding the perfect outfit and suddenly become paranoid that Peter is going to see me in the closet and I’m not going to be able to explain what I’m doing there.

Since having Baylie, my walking has more to do with her whereabouts. Peter just informed me that while he was working on the couch the other night, I came out of the bedroom convinced he had forgotten to put Baylor to sleep and that she was still awake somewhere in the house. A few nights before that, I walked out to the couch, woke up a little, was confused at what I was doing there and made up something along the lines of “I forgot to tell you good night”. Something about getting caught in the act of sleep walking is apparently very embarrassing for me.

In my daily thought process of “how can I get more done in a day?!” it hit me – I need to sleep clean. If I could just pick up a mop or the vacuum on my way to the closet or where ever else I travel in my dream state, I’d have a much more productive sleep schedule…if I could fold the laundry instead of piling it up next to the bed, I’d be in business.

What’s in Baylie’s Bag – 5th Edition

This week’s bag of choice was Baylie’s new Easter basket / bucket that was  a gift from my friend Chrissy. She spoiled Ms.B this last weekend with a bunny that was so incredibly soft, a blankie equally as soft, bunny ears and an Easter basket. Bay was in love with the goodies and also her new friend.



Kat’s bathing suit

A silver play cup

The parts to Mr. Potato Head, but no Mr.Potato Head

1 Slice of play bread


Books: “Time to Sleep Mr.Sheep!” and “Where is Baby’s Bellybutton?”

Barbie – who was formally undressed, but I felt since this isn’t an X-rated blog to clothe her

A wrist rattle made for a baby – Bay thinks it’s a bracelet

Also note the blur of color behind the table – this is Bay closing the blinds. You see now why the neighbor thought she was two kids instead of one.