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Guess Who’s Going Commando Tomorrow?

6 Jun

Some mornings just go completely awry. THIS was one of those mornings. I wake up with Ava in bed with me, breathing loudly because she has a cold. She crawled in somewhere in the 3am hour and proceeded to kick me and breathe through a stuffy nose the rest of the night. THEN? She also hogged my pillow so now I have a stiff neck. I love her but I love sleep.

So anyway…I get up this morning. I’m cruising right along. I have this great schedule/routine and I realize I’m like 15 minutes ahead! Shut up! This is going to be awesome. I’m going to get out of the door on time. Ahead of schedule maybe. I’m already thinking of how I’m going to spend my extra 15 minutes. I go to get Ava up…she’s not happy. At all. Very, very cranky. I take her in the living room and she wants to watch Team Umizoomi Legend of the Blue Mermaid. Awesome. I’ve got this. Except that when I go to the DVR screen it has been deleted. Why has it been deleted????? Because. Because my husband (who I love alot) is neurotic about the DVR being over 20% full because ya know…what if we have to tape a 24 hour movie or something, right? We need the space for nothing, clearly. Ugggghhhh! She’s crying.

So I talk her into watching Wow Wow Wubzy on the VideoOnDemand. Sweet. Let’s get this show rolling. Except that Time Warner hates me and it won’t work in the living room. So I try her room. It is “Unable to retrieve listings” there too. So then my room and BAM! It’s working. Sweet! So then it’s breakfast time. She wants cereal. Except that I don’t want her to have a bowl of cereal and milk in my bed. Meltdown #2 ensues. I’m now 20 minutes behind schedule. Shit. While I’m making her breakfast I call Mike to tell him I’m hiding the remotes from him so he can’t delete anything anymore.

So I decide while she’s eating I’ll throw all my stuff in my gym bag…I have to swim tonight for that triathlon I signed up for. I find my bathing suit lying on the floor. Ummmm….it was hanging on the door last night, along with my swim cap. I look everywhere and can’t find my swim cap. I call Mike to yell  ask him where he put it. His response, “Why would I know where YOUR swim cap is?”**** Nevermind that the bathing suit and the swim cap were together…hanging on the door. He closed the door to the bedroom last night, moving my swim cap and my bathing suit. But no, he doesn’t know where my swim cap is. Haha. At this point, it’s straight comedy.

This is my life and I love my life…even with all the frustrations that come along with it. But, tonight? Tonight after he’s asleep, I’m hiding all his socks and underwear and when he asks me where they are tomorrow, “Why would I know where YOUR socks and underwear are?” Point made?

****This is so similar to that time I couldn’t find my car keys and called him at work to which he said, “Why would I know where YOUR car keys are?” And then…an hour later…he calls….they were IN HIS POCKET!!!!!

Instructions: Mike’s Way

10 Mar

So I finally bit the bullet and bought myself a triathlon bike. My friend, JP, found it on Craigslist (most awesome friend ever) and it was a great deal. So we head down to West Hollywood to pick it up. The neighborhood was a little scary…I’m not going to lie. But the guy I bought the bike from was really nice and the deal was made. I present my super-awesome new bike that I’m terrified to ride:

Pretty, isn’t it? So the bike didn’t come with pedals. For those who may not know, these bikes don’t have normal pedals like my beach cruiser. The pedals on this type of bike you actually clip your shoe into. Here’s the bottom of my shoe and the pedal I have to clip into. This is important. And I promise the story gets more interesting.

Now…I had the shoes and the pedals and Mike put everything together. Bless that man. So he hands me my helmet and says, “Let’s go outside and practice clipping in and out.” I say, “Fine. But I don’t want to try riding yet. I just want to practice clipping.” He says, “Fine.” What he really means is, “You’re going to practice riding but I’ll say ‘fine’ to get you outside.”

I practice clipping in and out. No problem. This is easy. I can do this. Then of course he drags the bike out to the street and says, “Okay…let’s try riding.” I’m hesitant because I’ve heard how everyone falls over at some point because they can’t clip out. But he’s all confident, “You’ll be fine. I’ll be right here.”

So. This is what happens next:

Mike: Okay. So clip your first foot in.
Me: (Click) Okay. Left foot is in. Go up ahead to catch me when I stop so that if I fall over you can save me.
Mike: (Starts walking) Okay. Now clip your other foot in.
Me: (Click) (Tipping over) Oh no! Oh shit! I’m gonna…F*&K!!! OUCH!!! (TEARS)

I fell over. Right in the middle of the street, in the middle of the day, like a jackass. As soon as I could get my damn feet out of those pedals I stormed up the driveway…crying and clutching my behind. And when I say I was crying…I. WAS. CRYING! Ugly crying. Ladies you know this cry. Face all scrunched up. I left my bike in the middle of street I was so mad. I can hear Mike yelling after me, “Are you okay?” I keep on stomping, up the driveway, through the garage and straight to the couch where I plop down and cry some more. He gets inside and…

Mike: Are you hurt or embarrassed?
Me: Both.
Mike: Everyone falls Janice. It’s part of learning.
Me: I just don’t think this is for me. (bratty, much?)
Mike: Janice. Get your ass back outside.
Me: I don’t want to. I don’t want to fall over again.
Mike: I will hold the seat of your bike while you ride.
Me: Okay. Fine.

So on the way out he says to me, “What were you thinking? If you have both feet clipped in and you’re not moving, what did you think was going to happen?”

Well, gee babe, I don’t remember you saying, “Clip your first foot in, start pedaling and clip your second foot in.” THAT would have been helpful, right? And he’s like, “Well, of course you have to pedal.” And in hindsight I get that should have been common sense but I was a bit overwhelmed and I’m an extremely literal person. I was relying on him to coach me.

All in all, I got my butt kicked the first day. But I am proud to say that once I got back on I did fine. No more falling over and a little more confident. List of injuries:

  1. Road rash on elbow
  2. Overextended wrist
  3. Scraped knee
  4. Bruise on my behind the size of an oddly shaped watermelon
  5. Bruise on my inner thigh from the seat
  6. Imprint of the chain on my calf
  7. Bruised calf from where the pedal hit me

Bike: 7  Janice: 0

So I Went a Little Crazy…

25 Feb

There’s that part in my tagline that says “real” a few times. So here it is. I went a little crazy. It’s true. And I’m going to share my story because my friend Erica over at Polka Dot Hippo shared her story and if she hadn’t, I probably wouldn’t have realized something was really wrong. I’m so grateful for her openness.

So it started probably about a year ago. Slowly. I was irritable. With everyone and everything. I would get frustrated more easily than I’d ever remembered. It happened around the same time every month…period time. So I chalked it up to PMS. But every month it got worse. I started to become angry. Really angry over things that would normally roll of my back. At first I didn’t realize it was me. I just thought everyone else was a really, giant asshole that week.

About 6 months ago I realized that something was wrong with me…but I didn’t know what. There’s a history of mental illness in my family so I kind of started freaking out. I kept worrying what if something really is wrong with me? And then lo and behold, my friend Erica posted this blog post: How Do I Regain Control? And I felt like, “Wow…someone else feels this way!” But the tricky part with that is then I believed all was fine…I wasn’t crazy or anything because someone else was feeling the same way. That whole safety in numbers thing. But then a short while later, Erica posted this: Mother’s Little Helper. And it made me stop in my tracks. It was an “aha” moment for me.

Here is the short description: Premenstrual dysphoric disorder or PMDD is a condition associated with severe emotional and physical problems that are linked closed to the menstrual cycle. PMDD is not just a new name for PMS. It is, however, considered to be  a very severe form of PMS that affects about 5% of women. Both PMDD and PMS share symptoms in common that include depression, anxiety, tension, irritability and moodiness. What sets PMDD apart is its severity. Women with PMDD find that it has a very disruptive effect on their lives.

I went home that night and talked to Mike about her blogs posts and asked him to be really honest about me and how I’ve been acting lately. And he was awesome. He really was. He said that I was definitely flying into rages over things that I normally wouldn’t care about. He said my temper seemed to flare up and I’d become angrier than he could understand. I just felt out of control and angry and I wanted to know if he saw it too. And he did.

You want to know what it did to me…this PMDD thing? Mike and I rarely fight and when we do it’s pretty mellow. I bitch, he stares at me, we talk it out and usually within an hour all is great. We aren’t screamers. We don’t get physical. We don’t threaten divorce. We have been together for almost 10 years and the last few fights we had before I changed birth control pills, I took our wedding pictures off the walls, I told him I wanted a divorce and when he grabbed me to try to calm me down (because I was out of control angry) I kicked him. That’s a sad thing for me to admit. I love him more than anyone else in this world, so to realize that I had zero control over my behavior and hurt him in the process was really hard. It was time to talk to my doctor.

I made an early morning appointment and was terrified. It was a weird thing to see an OBGYN for. I met the doctor and she asked me why I was there and I told her. I told her that I felt that the week before my period the behavior and mood swings did not fall in the realm of normalcy. I told her I felt great most of the month except that one week when I was so angry and full of rage. She started talking about options and she was wonderful. She recommended switching my birth control pill to Beyaz, which contains a hormone that treats PMDD. I didn’t think this was going to work quick enough. I started crying. I was literally desperate. Desperate to stop being so angry…desperate to feel normal again…desperate to stop hurting my husband.  And I told her, “I can’t wait much longer to feel okay again. I just can’t. I need to be okay.” And honestly I was probably looking for something other than a birth control pill, but I am so grateful she persuaded me to try the switch first. She told me that I would see results in the first month and if I didn’t that I could call her and she would bring me in right away and put me on a different prescription.

That was exactly a month ago. I cannot even begin to explain the difference in my mood…not just around my period, but the entire month. My threshold for tolerance is higher. I’m not frustrated and when I am I don’t become filled with rage. I feel like me again. Mike said he noticed a difference within the first two weeks. That I was just happier overall. That I was affectionate and had a lot more patience than I’ve had recently. And I am so grateful for people like Erica, who share their stories. People who let me know that I’m not alone. Because everything I was going through, I hid…even from my best girlfriends. I think it’s normal to be afraid of being judged or labeled as crazy but we don’t grow if we stay where we are because we’re afraid. So there you have it. I went a little crazy.

Don’t Just Look. Feel. Smell. And Other Things I Say to Mike.

21 Jan

So I know…I’m blogging again. Gasp! Shock! Applaud! Are we done yet?

Being a single parent sucks. When Mike is out-of-town, I’m a complete mess. I wake up every hour, I sleep with the lights on, the tv on, the alarm on. I check the windows a million times…every sound is either an earthquake or a burglar. I’d prefer burglar…at least I could aim a rifle at him…maybe. Earthquakes I’m just a sitting duck.

What happened last night kind of takes the cake in my ability to be a single mom superwoman. I pick Ava up from school, head to the gym, get home, cook dinner (and by cook I mean microwave chicken nuggets) and while I’m “cooking” I decide to empty the litter box. While I’m doing this Ava comes into the kitchen to tell me she wants six chicken nuggets, not the original four she requested and that she would like ketchup AND honey tonight. I answer her, she tells me the kitty box stinks and to put the lid back on, which I do. I walk away and that’s that.

UNTIL 5pm today when I get the following phone call from Mike:

Him: Just a piece of advice…
Me: What? What did I do?
Him: When did you empty the litter box?
Me: Last night. Why?
Him: Last night?!?!?!
Me: Just tell me what happened!!!!
Him: Babe, you put the lid on backwards.
Me: What do you mean backwards?
Him: Meaning the entrance to get in is facing the wall…there is no entrance.  
Me: Oh my God!
Him: So last night at what time?
Me: Like 8pm. I think. Shit.
Him: I’m trying to figure out where she went to the bathroom.
Me: Have you checked the beds? Check the beds…this isn’t something we want to find out at 10pm tonight when we’re trying to go to sleep.
Him: I’m looking.
Me: Don’t just look. Feel. Smell. (yes…I said smell)

And this, people, is why I should not be left alone. I can’t even empty a litter box and put the lid back on correctly. I’m sure many of you are questioning my ability to parent at this point. We’re totally fine there though since Mike always leaves the toilet seat up we’re in no danger blocking the entrance to Ava’s bathroom. At some point I’ll share the story about the time a guest came over and put the toilet seat down.

Channeling the Old Navy Commercials

10 Nov

The other night we had to stop by Del Amo Motorsports so I could get Ava a helmet and sign some papers. I was waiting to meet with a lady there and was talking to another lady. Ava was behind me and every few seconds I turned around to make sure she was there and not causing trouble. I hear her little voice say, “Mom, will you take a picture of me and my friend?”

So I turn around and this is what I see:

 So I start cracking up because she’s totally waiting and expectant. Can you see how happy she is? So I take the picture. Immediately send it to my Dad and Mike. My dad says she’s part of the new Old Navy commercials. If you don’t know what I’m talking about go here:

Next thing I do is call Mike since he didn’t respond. He didn’t get the picture and asks what it was. Here’s the conversation:

Me: It was a picture of Ava holding hands with a mannequin.
Him: What? Why was she holding hands with a mannequin?
Me: It was her friend! (giggles)
Ava: Mom, what’s a mannequin?
Me: It’s a person who’s not real.
Ava: She wasn’t real??? (Heartbroken)

And can we talk about this mannequin for a second? I mean really with the boobs? They have these crazy mannequins in downtown LA too…except the ones down there have giant butts instead of giant boobs.

Should I be concerned that my daughter is friends with a mannequin?

It’s Like Magic…

2 Nov

So today I pick up my purse and I’m trying to find a bill that I remember I need to pay…the water bill I think…but then I got so sidetracked that I still haven’t paid the thing. In an effort to find the bill, I start taking things out of my purse. I have this little purse now because everyone made fun of my big purse and so now this new one is so small I can never find anything in it without taking everything out. I swear I have a point to this story.

So I start pulling things out and I find:

  1. A bag of half eaten fruit loops (thanks Ava)
  2. A sea-horse (no…not a real one)
  3. Mini bottles of Tabasco sauce (I have NO idea where they came from but just know I’m prepared if we’re dining out and the restaurant is fresh out)
  4. A half eaten rice krispie treat from Saturday (thanks Mike)
  5. An empty pack of gum (thanks again Mike)
  6. Our camera from Halloween (this was me)

I’m not joking…my purse is small. When my purse was bigger I’d find socks in it…courtesy of Ava. She does this really weird thing when I say we’re leaving…she starts packing everything in sight. It doesn’t matter much where we’re going she just wants to take stuff with her. We never leave the house with less than four stuffed animals, a book and some sort of figurine. About a year ago I started noticing things in my purse and realized she was bringing as much as she could and since I wouldn’t let her carry it out of the house she was stowing it in my purse. Genius idea, right?

And then there’s Mike…the guy who used to complain about holding my lip gloss when we went out. Dude…seriously…a half eaten rice krispie treat? 🙂 Anyone else agree that me finding that three days later is a fair trade-off for him having to hold my lip gloss until the day I die?

Anyone ever find weird things in their purse courtesy of their spouse or child?

Do lizards play dead when they molt?

21 Sep

So the husband is working late this evening and I have this thing called a triathlon looming in the near future. Since I have Ava, going to the gym is out of the question but I think, “Oh…I’ll just go run on my treadmill in the garage.” So I get all dressed and get out to the garage and get on the treadmill. My fingers press the start button and my legs start moving. I’m adjusting my ipod, look down and immediately scream and run back in the house and slam the door.

I gather myself and decide to go back outside and inspect what I think to be some sort of reptile in front of my treadmill. In case you haven’t caught on yet, I’m terrified of anything that crawls. Yes…even children. Anyhow. I go back out and creep up the treadmill and take a peek. DEFINITELY, a reptile…a lizard of some sort. I’m like, “WTH, why aren’t you moving?” I think maybe he’s dead and then I realize he’s got a layer of skin around him.

So I come inside, grab my phone and call Mike. Here’s what happens:
Me: Baby…there’s like a 6 inch maybe dead, maybe not dead lizard in the garage.
Him: Huh?
Me: Yeah. I know right. Only maybe he’s not dead. He’s molting. Or do only birds do that?
Him: Janice. Take the big push broom and sweep him out of the garage.
Me: I don’t think you understand. He’s in front of the treadmill. Between the treadmill and the wall.
Him: Okay. So go inside, get a broom and sweep him out.
Me: Okay. (walk inside get the broom)
Him: Is he alive?
Me: I don’t know I’m too scared to touch him.
Him: Use the broom.
Me: Even WITH the broom I can’t do it. I’m  too scared.
Him: He’s not going to jump up on your treadmill?
Me: OMG…I didn’t even think of that. Forget it. Guess I’m not running tonight.

And I’m terrified. I’m sitting in the house wondering how the little booger got into the garage. And I can’t stop wondering if he can get into the house. Maybe he’s dead. If he is he’s probably going to come back to life and scurry up my bed while I’m sleeping. OMG. This is why I can’t watch scary movies. I might have to go stay the night at Casie’s house.

The Day Starbucks Made Me Look Like a Liar

15 Sep

So this morning was one of those rare mornings when Mike was home in the morning. He usually leaves for work long before I’m even out of bed. Since we’ve moved into the new house, my Starbucks budget went from $20 a week to $2 a week. I don’t even know that I love the coffee that much because once I get to work I could have coffee and I don’t want it. I think I just like going to Starbucks…the social aspect of it.

Anyhow…back to the story. So given that my Starbucks budget has been $2 a week, I’ve only been to my new Starbucks like five times. Since Mike was home this morning and we were running on schedule I suggested we all go to Starbucks this morning. I’m telling him how I’m excited because I never get to go to Starbucks anymore, blah, blah, blah. I get to the counter and the guy says, “Grande Iced Coffee Unsweetened, right?”

Dude! It’s so awesome that he remembered but now I look like a total liar. Because who remembers the coffee order of a girl that doesn’t come in at least three times a week? Mike kind of looks at me and grins and I’m all, “I swear…I don’t know how he remembered that.” I even tried to say to the barista, “Wow, I’m surprised you remember.” And instead of him being like, “Oh we try to remember everyone, even you people who only come in once a week,” he just says, “Of course.”

P.S. If you haven’t had Swedish Fish in awhile, don’t eat them. Seriously. They are like crack for adults. I thought, “Oh, Swedish Fish, I’ll have one.” And I haven’t stopped all damn day.

The Excuse I’m Using for Not Cooking

19 Aug

So I cooked our first meal in our new home on Sunday. It might have been our last. You see, I used the oven to make garlic bread. Simple enough. Except that now the oven has stopped working…no power to it whatsoever. It’s so dead that the clock isn’t even working. And don’t ask me if I checked to make sure the power was on…I did jerks. Don’t try to offer me a hug either. I’m good. I purchased a home warranty plan when we bought the house. I worry about everything and this time my worrying paid off. Maybe.

I called the warranty company last night…they took down my info and we have an appointment scheduled for a company to come out and look at it on Saturday. It’s an old oven and I would be lying if I said I really hope they can fix it. I don’t. I hope that oven is so broke we need a new one. I’ve even thought about suggesting to Mike to go in there and break it really good but to not make it look like we broke it really good so that we could get a new oven. But I won’t…because I’d feel guilty. That whole thing I say about doing the right thing, even when nobody is looking…I really do live by it. Plus I believe in karma. I also believe that anything you do comes back three-fold…good or bad. So I’m just going to hope that I did something good enough to get a new oven. Otherwise I won’t be able to cook and my family will starve. That last part’s a lie…if you know anything about me, you know I can use a microwave like nobody’s business.

Dear Oven God, please send me a new oven. Love, Janice

The Expected Meltdown

28 Jul

I have been a bitch the past two weeks. There’s no way to sugar coat that. My fuse has been short and my temper easily flared. I have not been easy to deal with. I know this. I have been dealing with so much. Anyone who has bought a house can understand the amount of work that goes into getting this transaction to the end stages. My day consists of reading emails, printing attachments, signing attachments, scanning, emailing back. Then there’s the whole setting up utilities, carpet install appointments, mold remediation estimates. Meeting people, talking to people, fighting with people. I feel like Gumby right now. I’m pulled in a million different directions all day. I’m an excellent multi-tasker but this takes multi-tasking to a whole new level.

I work a full-time job, have a 3 1/2 yo at home who never stops talking and a husband who calls me a lot. So this buying a house business has just tipped my balancing act right over. I had a meltdown of epic proportions this morning. I’m stressed. I am. Did I mention Mike is out-of-town for work and we are closing on our house this week? Oh dear God. So I’m a single parent right now. My emotions are frayed and my brain hurts.

SOOOOOOO….this morning. I actually get Ava and I out the door on time. That should have been my first clue that the morning was going to unravel. We are leaving for Napa on Friday morning and I decide that since I have a few minutes, I’ll clean all the boxes out of my trunk to make room for luggage. It’s not 7:20 am so I’m still doing okay on time. I get in the car, Mike calls…I answer. I’m still happy. Then I turn the car on and a light comes on. It’s a triangle with an exclamation point in the middle. WTF is this??? It can’t be good. I open the owner’s manual for the car and learn that it’s a tire pressure warning light. What???? My car has that???? So cool! Wait…shit…that means something is wrong with my tires.

So I get out of the car. Mike is still on the phone. And sure enough my front tire is low on air. Argghhhh! Here is what happens next:

Mike: Just go to the gas station and put some air in it.

Janice: How much air do I put in it?

Mike: It should say on the tire.

Janice: I can’t find it. (Frustration now mounting)

Mike: Just take my truck.

Janice: But what about my tire! What if when I get home tonight it’s flat!!!! Is the car seat in your truck? I’ll just go put air in my tire. I’m gonna be late for work now.

Mike: Just take my truck. What if you take your car to work and it goes flat in the parking garage.

Janice: I really can’t handle anymore. I’m so stressed out.

Mike: I don’t know what you want me to do.

Janice: I want you to be here. I’m handling all this by myself and it sucks.

There were some more words exchanged…it ended with us both being pissed off and saying “I’ll talk to you later.” Then the tears came. Big, fat, I can’t handle all of this I want my mommy tears! And I couldn’t stop them. No matter how hard I tried I couldn’t stop crying. And I was crying for no big reason, just a bunch of little ones. I was crying because I’m now late for work. Once I get to work I have to tell my boss that I know I showed up late, and I know I’m leaving early but now I also need a 1/2 hour to run to the bank and wire money so that I can close escrow on a house. And I hate that.

I think at some point I looked towards the heavens and said, “Really? A flat tire? Today? Not cool, God, not cool.” Mike called back and said he just felt bad. And I did too…he’s been awesome through all of my moodiness and short temperament. He said it best when I said, “I’m a guy and guys want to fix things. His “fix” was for me to take his truck since he couldn’t be here to change my tire. And it makes sense…guys are like that. They don’t understand emotional, crying women sometimes. They just want to stop the tears and most of the time, there’s not a whole lot that can be done to stop them…sometimes the tears just need to fall out. Damn woman hormones.

What was the last thing you cried about?