Monthly Archives: September 2010

Plucking Protocol

At what point should I stop plucking the silver/gray/white hair and start dying it?

And don’t bother suggesting the alternative, because I’m not going down without a fight…

Broken Record

I’ve sat through a few soccer practices and games now. One of my son’s coaches has about three phrases she shouts repeatedly. She never varies from her set phrases, the intonation or the volume. At some point I catch myself  hoping a stray soccer ball might shut her up.

(Did I just say that?)

In all fairness, I started listening to myself today; what are my stock phrases?

I hereby proclaim myself guilty of uttering the following phrases more often in one week than the soccer coach utters hers in one game:

  • Milk at the table! (Or crayons/snack/paint–whatever the kid is trailing across the room.)
  • It will taste the same, no matter what color your plate is.
  • Books are for reading, not eating.
  • Be nice to your brother.
  • How about you sing in a pretty voice?
  • You’re going to fall down.
  • Who’s stinky?
  • No screaming, please.
  • In the water! In the water! That’s the wall!
  • Shut the door. Shut the door. Shut the door. SHUT. THE. DOOR.
  • Hang it up.
  • Where does that belong?
  • You got down; you’re done.
  • Where did you have it last?
  • I’d look in all the same places you would.
  • The bathroom is not a place to play.
  • The fridge is not a place to play.
  • That’s an inside toy.
  • Go potty first.
  • Just try it.
  • I knew you could do it.
  • Just a minute.
  • Hold on.
  • Wow….
  • I don’t know; I didn’t wear your shoes. (Socks, cleats, coat, etc.)
  • Food. (In response to the question: What’s for dinner/lunch/snack? They hate this one.)
  • Good food. (In response to the question: What kind of food?)
  • Really good food. (You can guess this one.)

Watch Your Back, Canada Fitness

When I was in elementary school, we had this fitness program come through the schools each spring. The teachers posted a gianormous poster in the hall that charted each student’s progress on a variety of fitness tests. At the end, you were awarded these embroidered badges–bronze, silver, gold and maybe something for the superstars called “excellence” or something.

I hated the Canada Fitness program. It didn’t matter how hard I tried, I only ever squeaked by into the bronze category, which at least spared me the ignominy of going up to the stage to receive a “participation” pin, but still. Bronze. I consoled myself that as far as anyone else knew, I’d just barely missed silver–and a lot of students significantly more athletic than I did just that. I don’t think anyone kept their badges.

In junior high, I started a program of running around Nicholas Sheridan lake on the crushed lava rock paths(5.8 km). I told myself that if I tried hard enough, long enough, I’d surprise everyone that knew me.

I tried–possibly not long enough, I don’t know; the Canadian winter had a way of cutting short most outside activities. I’ll blame it on that. I don’t think I ever improved enough to even make it around the lake once .

I got married, had kids, began walking routines sporadically and dropped them. Running? Hahahahaha. Yeah right. I am simply not an athlete, I decided.

Until July, when I came home from the cabin and got on the scale.

I’m going to come out an say it. One hundred and forty three pounds. I weighed that much going in to give birth to my first child. Going in. Nine months bloated.

NOT good. Horrifying, in fact.

Not to mention that school was starting in less than a month and I had nothing to wear because, well, my youngest child is seven years old and you tend to ditch the maternity clothes at a some point.

So I started walking. And watching what I ate. Lost some weight (128.8 this morning, thank you) and started punching new holes in my belt.

And I started running.

The first time, out of my entire three mile walk, I ran from one driveway to another. The lots out here are about 125 feet wide, just to give you an idea of how far that is. I thought I was going to die. Every day I ran a few steps further. At some point I realized that the first thing I searched frantically for after my outings was my inhaler.


Yesterday I took it before I went running. Even though I didn’t feel like I needed it.

It was amazing. Take that, Canada Fitness Bronze. I was flying and alive. Okay, maybe I was only flying for the last half mile–but I’ve never run so far in my life, and I’m thirty four years old. I didn’t know my body could do that.

I was staring at the ceiling last night thinking–what if? What if a woman my age could really change her physical makeup? How far could I run in a year from now, if I don’t let winter get in my way? What, really, am I capable of?

Hear Me Roar

(Disclaimer: I actually stole this post from my other blog; I’m busy today. Sue me.)

I attended my first soccer game. Ever.

My ten year old was playing.

It was his first soccer game, also.


Lest you feel bad that you weren’t invited, rest assured that had he recognized anyone else on the sidelines, he probably would have walked home in his cleats. Nothing personal; he just does not consider being soundly whipped to be a real social occasion.

Someone pulled him out near the break–halftime?–whatever you call that interval where the kids are supposed to be catching their breath but really they are just playing soccer still, but off the field and with more balls, and the parents sit on the sidelines and shiver and wish someone would just get the game going again. Anyway. They must have told him that a defender can actually leave the immediate goal area, because during the second half he started to resemble more than an additional goal post.

I just want to let you know that I left all my books in the van. Nor did I sit and gab with any of the other parents huddled on the sidelines.

I actually watched the game.  Kudos to moi.

But when I came home and had read with the kids, it was really, really dark by the time I went outside for my walk–not to mention threatening rain–and so I rode the elliptical that is gathering dust in my neighbor’s garage until there was sweat pooling in my socks.

(Eww. I know you wanted to know that.)

Point being: who should be waiting for me when I was done, but the three legged dog!! I kid you not. He was sitting on the back step, waiting. He growled. I growled. He ran away.

I am woman, hear me roar.

(Oh, and to all you voxers out there–I did add you all to some readomatic or blogsurfer or something, but you still aren’t showing up unless I go into the guts of this thing; I know I’ve seen blogrolls on the sides of these things before. Still getting there…)

That Was . . . “Easy”


What a learning curve. It took me ten minutes to find a place to sign in to wordpress. I could read my blog, but couldn’t find a place to log in and actually use my blog.

And then I couldn’t figure out how to actually create a post. Still haven’t figured out how to add people to a blogroll or whatever it is that takes the place of a neighborhood here.

But here I am.

All because I had to gripe. Well, and it was blog or clean my kitchen or study and my study guide is lame.

Went to Staples this morning. I had a gift card in the amount of ten dollars. Whoo hoo, I know. But hey, my son needed a few more school supplies and Walmart was out. So was Staples. (I mean, why stock enough looseleaf to supply the entire town during the first weeks of school?)


I was feeling lazy and didn’t want to actually add up my purchases, right? So I played it safe and bought the cheap paper folders rather than the more expensive plastic folders, etc, in order to stay under my ten dollars, right?

Got to the check out.

Total: $7.66

The checker hands me my receipt, puts the gift card in a drawer, and tells me to have a good day. I stare at her. She stares back.

“Do I get change or something?”

“No, that’s all there was on the card.”


There was exactly seven dollars and sixty six cents on my gift card?

Right…. How very prescient of the gift giver to have known that exact amount.

I didn’t want to argue with the twit, and it was a matter of less than three dollars, right? But then I realized that I could have bought the vinyl folders. I could have bought that package of highlighters I kind of needed, but didn’t get because I didn’t really need and didn’t want to go over the ten dollars.

I have to admit I feel a little cheated.

Hats off to the Moses Lake Staples, because they won’t be getting anything else from me if I can help it.

Crafting the Impersonal Personal

First day of school for everyone but my fifteen year old, and she is on a cleaning rampage. Yes!!! I remember doing that at her age when I was home from school.

Everyone else has hauled their (collective) six hundred pencils, thirty six glue sticks, a cart full of tissue and ziplock bags, three hundred pens, thirty markers, fifty five erasers, forty notebooks, etc, etc, off to school. Well, everyone but the 8 toddlers who are dozing around my feet.
And me? I'm only blogging because I'm avoiding a homework assignment. 
I have to write a Classroom Management Plan and a Personal Philosophy of Education Statement. 
Are you ready?
It can't have any I statements in it. 

As in "I believe" or think, or feel, or hope. Just supposed to write it like it's gospel truth I guess. "Students learn best when they are…"  Whatever. 
Why call it a Personal Philosophy Statement?
Enough griping. Get back to work. Tick Tock Tick Tock.

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