A Juxtaposition of Comments Regarding Personal Appearance (Subtitle: Why I’m Only Eating Celery the Rest of the Month)

Allow me to describe for you a juxtaposition of comments relayed to Husband this week—one regarding himself, and the other regarding me.

First, the comment regarding Him:

It was Sunday, and we were innocently visiting with my in-laws while getting ready for Boy #3’s belated-belated birthday party, when my father-in-law said to my husband, “Oh! Have I got something to tell you!”

He started explaining that he worked with this woman who is our age, what she does for the company, etc., etc. He said they were in his office discussing something when he noticed that she was looking at the slide show of photos that was playing on his computer. Suddenly she interrupted him, an intent look in her eyes.

Her: “Wait. Can I ask you something?”

Him: “Sure. What?”

Her: “Can you go back a couple of photos?”

So my father-in-law went back to the photo she was referring to and said, “This one?”

Her: “Yeah, that’s the one.”

It was a photo of Husband holding Boy #3. I thought to myself (because, of course, I was listening to the conversation), “Oh, she must know him. She probably went to college with us.” Seriously, I swear EVERYONE knows my husband. He seems to have some reputation that precedes him everywhere he goes.

But I definitely wasn’t prepared for what I heard next:

Her: “I just have two questions for you. That guy is SMOKIN’ HOT. Who is he? And is he married?”

“HECK YES, he’s married!” I heard myself blurt out with a bit too much Napoleon in it. I looked over to see my in-laws smiling and Husband looking a bit embarrassed but definitely flattered. It really was kind of humorous (Of course, my father-in-law told her that he was married with three boys.), but for some reason, it kind of bothered me.

Honestly, it’s been since college that I’ve heard any woman refer to my husband as “hot.” (Not sure I’ve ever heard the “smokin'” part.) Not that he’s not a great-looking guy, but it’s just that once you’re married, people don’t usually tell you how cute they think your man is. So I just wasn’t sure what to DO with that. Okay, I’m married to someone that someone else thinks is hot. I may need to step it up a bit, I decided. You know, maybe wear something around the house besides sweat pants that are so tight that they cling to my generous bulges and a big ratty T-shirt. Possibly make sure I brush my teeth before noon on Saturdays. Something like that…

So as you can see, I was already feeling a bit insecure about my own appearance compared to my husband’s. You know, I can’t say anyone has referred to ME as “smokin’ hot” since, I don’t know…EVER! But then, last night, Husband had to tell me about THIS COMMENT, which just drove a nail in the coffin of my already wounded self-esteem…

Comment about ME:
Husband set the scene by telling me that he was driving Boy #2 to his dance class (Yes, my boy is a dancer!) last night when Boy #2 asked a question, completely out of the blue.

Boy #2: So, do you think Mom’s going to have a girl this time?

Husband: What?! [Trying not to swerve off the road.] Honey, Mom’s not having a baby.

[Pause.]

Boy #2: Well, she sure keeps getting fatter!

So there you have it. He’s smokin’ hot, and I look like I’m 6 months pregnant.

And the diet begins…NOW.

Oh, It’s On!

In my last post, I wrote about how I was ONCE AGAIN home with a sick kid. When perusing my comments later, I noticed that I had received a CHALLENGE from An Iowa Mom! Here’s what she said:

Wanna make a bet that my kids will miss more school than yours this school year (due to illness)? Really … let’s make a contest of it. Or are you not brave enough for this challenge?

Bawk Bawk

I especially like the “Bawk Bawk” at the end. Nice touch!

Yeah, Iowa Mom, you’re ON! Let’s see…right now we’ve got I believe 4 or 5 days absent for Boy #1. I’ll check for sure. But here’s my question for YOU, Iowa Mom…

Care to make it even MORE interesting?

Want to throw TARDIES into the mix?

Warning: you don’t know who you’re messin’ with in THIS category!

I’ll be waiting for your reply.

Why I Work Part-Time…

Well, here I am home yet AGAIN with a sick kid. It’s Boy #1 again. Fever of 101, a bit of a sore throat, and a rash on his chest. I know I should probably take him to the doctor, but he’s really not acting THAT sick, so I will probably just wait and see. I hate to drive 20 minutes away and pay $10 (I know–I’m not complaining about our co-pay. It’s pretty cheap!) just to have them tell me that it’s a virus and will just have to run its course. You know, because it’s all about MY convenience!

I swear my kids are sick ALL THE TIME. And I even nursed them for at least 9 months each! I read that kids who are breastfed have healthier immune systems overall. If this is true, my kids would probably have to live in a bubble if I wouldn’t have been able to breastfeed!

Why is it that my kid can have a fever of 101 and STILL have the appetite of a voracious pre-teen? Maybe because he IS a voracious pre-teen? Seriously, I just gave him two bowls of Kix (without milk) and then just got “summoned” downstairs to get him something else to eat. THEN he asked me if we could go to the store and get crackers and Gatorade! Seriously, why can’t he just SLEEP when he’s sick?!?

And my kids are NEVER sick on the weekends. Why is that? Boy #1 was FINE last night. He even baby-sat for the first time for my nephew. (I’m sure my sister-in-law and brother-in-law will be thrilled to hear that Nephew was likely exposed to some virus last night. Hey, spread the love, right?) And then this morning—bam! Fever. Aches. Rash.

And I think about going back to work full-time, and I laugh and laugh…

The Mysterious Man-Ponytail Comment

Last night, as Boy #3 was settling down in his our bed, he blurted something out of the blue that has made me giggle ever since.

“Today at preschool I told Greg that my dad has a ponytail.”

Now, it’s not that I think men with ponytails are weird or funny-looking or anything; I just think my man with a ponytail would be both weird and funny-looking.

And why Boy #3 decided to tell his friend that his dad has a ponytail is a complete mystery to me. Does he wish his dad had a ponytail? Did he see a man with a ponytail at preschool? Does Greg’s dad have a ponytail?

I kept laughing when I was laying in bed thinking about Boy #3’s comment and trying to picture Husband with a ponytail.

I just can’t see it.

Magnum P.I. mustache? Yes.
Man ponytail? No.

Nothing Says "Fall" Like a Corn Maze

Last night my good friend Jody invited us to the Harvest Moon Corn Maze at Geisler Farms. If you are anywhere in the Central Iowa area, you definitely need to put this on your to-do list this fall! It was like the definition of fall, all wrapped up like a present and tied with a corn-husk bow.

First of all, I must say that Jody has the nicest friends! Many of them were from her church, and some of them she had just met, but they were all extremely friendly and inviting. (Yeah, and as a sidenote, I am soooo tired of the media categorizing Christians as “judgmental” and “rigid” and “selfish.” The nicest AND MOST ACCEPTING people I have ever met in my adult life have been Christians who—gasp!—lean to the right! OK, I will now step down from my soapbox. There, I’m off.) EVEN got to meet—finally!—my bloggy friend Melody from Three Boys and a Dog! Not only Melody, but her husband and two of the three boys as well! She was just as sweet and funny in person, and her family was very nice as well. In fact, Boy #3 had the most fun playing with Melody’s boys in the “corn box” (Picture a huge sandbox, but filled with dried feed corn instead of sand.).

Jody reserved a fire pit for our group, and we roasted hot dogs and chowed on delicious taco soup and hamburger/cheese/rotel dip, my favorite! Oh, and I cannot forget the s’mores! (Although I DID make Husband angry when I made his s’more. Apparently, I didn’t put the roasted marshmallow with the chocolate fast enough, and the chocolate DID NOT MELT! Really, he was very irritated with me! Who knew that unmelted chocolate was one of his biggest pet peeves? Man, 18 years together and we’re STILL getting to know each other! He did finally get over it, after I saw him go over and make himself another one…But lesson learned—never make Hubby a s’more again!)

The kids played on some super-fun playground equipment, including a wooden playset, a humongo tire swing that I swear about 75 kids were on at the same time, and a “rodeo golf” or “ladder ball” (whatever you call it in your neck of the woods) game.

Then, as the moon rose over the horizon, it was time for the corn maze. The theme was “Vote 2008,” of course, and we navigated through the maze in the shape of a donkey and elephant. Well, I shouldn’t say “we” navigated through the maze because I didn’t even understand how to follow the map. I was content being a “follower,” even when Husband got us completely lost! At one point, we were following a “trail” that got narrower and narrower, and I realized that it was NOT a trail; we were just walking through the corn! Images of Malachi from my all-time most freaky movie growing up, Children of the Corn, kept popping into my head as we fought the corn stalks, finally reconnecting with the “real” cleared, WIDE path. (Claustrophia begone!)

Armed with flashlights and an impaired sense of direction, Husband, Boy #3, and I stumbled through the maze until we ran into another group, which included our other two children, and we tagged along with them. The kids had a great time trying to follow the map, finding each of the 10 stations, and punching their map at each point to prove they’d found it. And amazingly there were no injuries, unless you count one little boy losing his shoe. (For once, it was not one of my boys!)

After conquering the maze, Boys #1 and #2 went for a hayrack ride, while Boy #3 frolicked in the corn box. And Husband scraped the mud off Boy #3’s shoes. And I, of course, took pictures.


CAUTION: MOOD SWINGS AHEAD

There are days when I cannot get to work fast enough. I get in the van, shut the door, turn on my uplifting music, and relax. After 15 minutes of listening to what I want to listen to and spending some quiet time in prayer, I arrive at my office. Aahhh, to drink a cup of coffee in peace. I don’t have to break up fights or send anyone to their room. No one is yelling “Moooommm!” down the hall. (And if they do, I don’t have to answer!) Instead of hearing “It’s not fair!” yelled at the top of the lungs, I only have to hear whispered grumblings now and again. And I can tune those out with my ipod. I get paid to read and write and correct grammar, all things I love. I even get to use different colored pens if I want. Really, it’s the perfect job for me.

Then there are days like this when I get to work only to wish I were still at home. Wish I were a good stay-at-home mom who can take the boys to the library or to the pool. Wish I were home digging through the boys’ rooms, getting everything organized so they can find the toy they want to play with and always have clean underwear in their drawers. Wish I had our list of family rules posted on the fridge and everyone followed them eagerly. Wish we could all lay down for an afternoon snuggle.

Sometimes I even wish I could teach the boys myself, like she does. (If you know me personally, you are most likely laughing heartily at this point.)

But here I am. And there they are.

I miss the little hoodlums.

Psst. Read This During Algebra Class!

Dear Internets,

Will you be my friend?

Check Yes or No.

Okay, before you answer, you may want to keep reading. I’ve got some stipulations and disclaimers that may influence your decision.

  • You should not be able to eat off your floor on a regular basis.
    Being able to occasionally drop a cookie on the floor (note that I said cookie and not carrot) and pick it up and pop it into your mouth without worry of ingesting a dog hair or piece of dried mud OR contracting a deadly foodborne illness is okay, but being able to do this on a daily basis is just not consistent with my lifestyle.
  • The phrase “My kids NEVER do that!” must not have ever escaped your lips. Unless you’re using a sarcastic tone.
  • You can exercise, but you mustn’t LOVE it. If you want to be able to tell your friend, “I can’t WAIT to run 10 miles after work!” and have her relate–or at the very least not kick you in the shins–then I may not be what you’re looking for.
  • You can be pretty, but you shouldn’t really know it or at least ACT like you know it. And you really shouldn’t work at it either. Occasionally primping or pampering is okay, but spending too much time at the spa getting your nails done, toes pedicured, bikini area waxed, lips plumped, face exfoliated, tummy tucked, boobs enhanced, wrinkles straightened, or thighs tanned just leaves less time for you to attend to MY needs. And that’s what’s really important here.
  • You must possess a sense of humor and like to laugh. A lot. Especially at subtle or stupid humor. Seinfeld? Napoleon Dynamite? Hot Rod? Brilliant. Will Ferrell? Pee-your-pants hilarious. Bubb Rubb and Lil’ Sis? Classic.
  • I’d like to be able to fart in front of you. Or at least announce that I need to. If that would nauseate you, you may want to consider checking No.
  • You need to tell me if I have food in my teeth or a booger in my nose. Put me in my place if I need it. Tell me I’m being stupid, or whiny, or catty. That’s what friends do.
  • You should probably enjoy hanging out doing not much of anything. Just chatting about everything from the raunchy smell of cooked cauliflower to what you think Heaven is like. While sipping a margarita, of course.
  • You mustn’t be a prude. These hands have touched poop–both human and that of a variety of animal species. They’ve pulled worms in half. They’ve scrubbed mold and vomit and probably even moldy vomit. I’ve witnessed pigs mating and pigs being castrated (no, not at the same time). “Princess” is not a term that has ever been used to describe me.
  • If you consider yourself just a smidgen crazy, that’s a plus. You shouldn’t hold it against me that I have to take my “happy pills” or visit my “crazy doctor,” as we affectionately refer to her.
  • You should never EVER wear creepy fake eyelashes. Unless it’s Halloween.
  • You should definitely love your kids, but you should also love getting far, far away from them occasionally. “I don’t think I can leave my kids overnight–I’ll just miss them too much!” This–I DO NOT GET. Just so ya know.
  • You probably shouldn’t be severely allergic to dust. Had to throw in that medical disclaimer for my own liability.

So whaddya think?

Wanna be my friend?

Yes

No