Sunday, June 26, 2011

WP Transfer...

Finally transferring to Word Press. Please excuse the mess in the meantime!

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Mommy/Daughter Day

Today is a big mother/daughter day.  Around 3am (ugh) this morning my father woke up to fly to Florida to visit with his brother for a few days.  My mom, who has MS, hasn't been feeling well and my parents have a dog.  So I came to stay last night.  D is in NYC for a conference but returns late tonight. We're both going to stay over my parent's house and then the shuttle taking us to the airport is coming at the @ss crack of dawn tomorrow (aka 5am) to take us to the airport.  We're flying to Seattle and then D's parents are driving us to Vancouver. So sweet!  We're going to spend a week with D's family in Canada (cooler weather here I come!) And celebrate his grandpa's 90th birthday!

Look familiar?
But today, there is much to be done.  There are errands to run. There are suitcases (or rather singular, ONE suitcase, since it is so freaking expensive to pack two!) to be packed.

And then, a very special mother/daughter dinner.  You see, my father's tastes are ... well ... very limited.  As in toddler's have a wider range (probably). So my mom doesn't get to try new foods very often.

When I was in 5th grade, my class went to an Indian buffet for lunch and it was great.  My mother and I went back a few weeks later and hated it.  Since then, I've started eating Indian food and again, fallen in love. So tonight, it is mom's turn to sample Indian food again!

A little mother/daughter bonding can't hurt.  I'm excited to get to spend the day with my mom .... and hang out with their dog.  Who I love. And miss terribly!

What are your plans today? As an adult, how do you get meaningful time with your parents?

Friday, June 24, 2011

You Can't See Me!

When I was a freshman in college, my friend and I were walking into the campus center.  And as I walked in and saw some gorgeous football players (not a guarantee in my school!) walking up the stairs, I tripped.  Not sure what over, but that's irrelevant.  Point is I tripped.  And covered my face.  I guess I assumed if I couldn't see the guys then they couldn't see me!

Sometimes my logic amazes even me!

So what made me think of this?

Today I went to the bathroom at work. I tried to go into the stall by the window but it was locked.  So I went into the next stall and force of habit, looked at my neighbor's feet.  Except, I couldn't see any.  Which I thought was odd.  So naturally, I bent over even further.  And there were her feet.  She was doing #2 (or rather, waiting until I left to do it) so she raised her feet to be anonymous.

I kinda get it, and kinda think it's crazy.  It's not like we all don't have the same bodily needs from time to time.

Then again, who hasn't gone into a bathroom and acted horrified at the smell that you encountered.

Maybe in the end we all just want to give off the impression of being perfect?  If that's the case, I've failed!

And I guess the real question is ... do you do #2 in public places?

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Privacy vs. the Blog!

It is so easy when blogging to share.  You can write whatever you want and if you turn off your comments, you'll never have to hear anything about it!

But with great power comes great responsibility (this is a line from a movie ... can someone comment and tell me which one? I seriously have no idea...).

What do I mean by that?

Well, when you blog, just how honest are you?  Are there certain topics that are off limits?  Do you use full names?  Or just first? Or letters? Or made up names?  Do you post pictures? Or do you consider that too personal?

I've come to realize everyone has their own style.  Some people are very open while others are very secretive.

When I first started blogging (you know, a whole FOUR months ago lol) I only really read Beth's blog.  So I kinda used her example.  But morphed it a bit.

You see, my actual, real, legit first name is somewhat unique.  And I don't want anyone to find me! (Shhh, I'm hiding.) So I had to come up with a name. I could explain where Sara comes from, but that's unlikely to happen in the near future.

Now as for D, his name actually starts with the letter D.  Whenever possible, I do use the first letter of someone's name.  But, sometimes it's too confusing.  So sometimes I pick another letter.  Don't hate me.

But what about topics?  This is especially timely because JUST LAST NIGHT, I found myself in a conversation about sex toys that I did not start.  (Here's lookin' at you, Kim and you, Rusti.)  Now the conversation itself didn't upset/worry/bother me. (And since I know you are just DYING to know ... no, D and I do not and have not ever owned nor used the sex toy they were discussing!)

But, D had a stricken look on his face.  He was suddenly fearful that "once you put something on the internet, that's it."  It's there and there is NO going back!

This doesn't worry me quite as much.

Plus, I'm 99% anonymous.  A few people know who I really am and only a FEW (as in 3) that I know in real life know that I blog.  And one is my husband.  I'm not too worried.

But even though I am anonymous, I'm not naive.  I fully imagine one day I will open up my blog and tell my family about it.  And when that day comes, I don't want to risk them going back through my entries and discovering something.  (Basically, if my mom and MIL were to read this post tomorrow, would it be ok? If the answer is yes, the post can go up!)

So family (with the exception of memories and good/funny stories) is off the table.

I also don't discuss coworkers (good technique, make sure one of the THREE people you know in real life is a coworker! It helps keep you honest!), friends, or my husband.  Again, except for memories/funny stories.  If I mention a person who was in my life previously, I have to be certain of two things: (a) they will never ever ever read my blog and/or (b) even if they did, I would not care if they did realize I was talking about them.  If you can pass BOTH of these two tests, the story goes in.

I also keep a lot of my private life, private.  At first I didn't even say what state I lived in.  That changed.  But I haven't talked about my work except in mostly abstract terms.  And that's intentional.

This invisible line between what is allowed and what isn't will only get worse once I get pregnant and/or have a kid.

What are your rules regarding privacy on your blog??

Mama’s Losin’ It 

This was written in response to the prompt:What are your thoughts on blogging and privacy...where do you draw the line?

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Aren't We All Doctors?

Have you ever noticed how many doctors there are in the world?

Ok ... obviously I am not literally talking about doctors. But I'm amazed how people become doctors without ever having to go to school.

You might be shaking your head or disagreeing with me.  But think about it.

You don't feel well.  A friend/colleague/coworker/spouse/family member asks what is wrong and you tell them your head/foot/shoulder/big toe hurt.  They may ask a follow up question, they may not. Regardless, they are almost certain to tell you (a) what is wrong with you and (b) how to treat it.

No, I don't just mean that "you should see a doctor."  But rather, you should take this medicine, but not this one.  You should elevate/heat/ice for 10 minutes/1 hour/15 days.

Maybe it's just me? Maybe I am just surrounded by unlicensed doctors?

And don't think I don't do it too.

Now when your are a mom you have to diagnose.  I get that.

But be careful! Diagnosing your toddler could quickly grow to diagnosing any ailment on any person near you.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

My Accountant Says...

(Sorry ... another Sex and the City reference ... "my therapist says...")

Anyways, I'm back.

My immediate family all use the same accountant.  Could we do the taxes ourselves? Possibly. But that's a topic for another day.


So last year I got a return but my siblings owed (state and Federal).  I can't remember about my parents.  Anyway, our accountant told us to claim we were single (which at the time I legally was) and zero exemptions.

Let me tell you, that sucked! It was a lot more money out of my paycheck (ok ... not a lot more money, but enough that I'd notice).  But we listened.  And this year, we all got rebates.

Which got me thinking.  My accountant, I listened to without really a moment's hesitation.

Doctors, not so much.  Now I'm not talking about big things like cancer where we'd probably do anything our doctor recommended.  I'm talking about "proactive" things like lose weight, eat healthier, exercise more.  Ok, technically these could all be "big" things some day but at least in the present they aren't IMMEDIATELY life threatening, so more often than not, we ignore the advice.

For instance, my orthopedist recommended I wear a boot a few hours a day and do some exercises to help my foot.  The boot I'm pretty good at wearing.  The exercises?  Not so much.  I keep saying I'll start.  But alas I don't.

Maybe tonight will be the night!

I bet our accountant was pleasantly surprised when he saw our IRS forms and saw that we ALL listened to his advice.

If only all professionals got the same response...

Monday, June 20, 2011

My Safeway National Dairy Month Shopping Trip

D and I are huge dairy fans, and D loves the opportunity, any opportunity, to eat outside, so I jumped at the chance to participate in Safeway’s National Dairy Month.    

As we try to be healthier, we’ve come to realize just how important dairy is in a healthy lifestyle.  It is also a very tasty addition to any diet!  D and I both love milk, though he drinks more of it than I do.  We’ve also started really liking the Yoplait yogurts that taste like dessert (some of them actually do, it’s amazing!).  We’re also big fans of cheese, though our tastes differ.  I like cheddar, gouda, brie, and mozzarella.  While D likes all those, he also likes swiss, and blue cheese, and any stinky cheese.  I cannot even smell some of his favorite cheeses.

Now when buying dairy, there aren’t very many special considerations.  We have no allergies, though we do try to look at labels to get the items that are healthiest for us.

The same is NOT true when deciding on a recipe.  D and I have very unique considerations when it comes to food.  A bit hard to explain.  But suffice it to say, we keep Kosher-style, meaning no mixing meat with dairy.  This often means I have to edit/alter recipes I find to make sure there is no mixing.

Two of our favorite dairy ingredients are mozzarella cheese and pesto sauce.  Since we were going to eat outside I also wanted to make sure we had something accessible for outdoors.  So sandwiches it was!  I found a few recipes online at an awesome website (seriously, go take a look, I’ll wait!).   And edited them.

D and I go both enjoy food shopping so we usually do it together.  I either write up a paper list (old fashioned I know!) or give him the list to put on his Ipod touch.   Now I love our local Safeway.  The produce department in particular is so inviting.  It makes me want to taste everything (I resist!) with all the bright colors.  No matter when I go in or what time of day, it is always neat and inviting.  It isn’t cramped like some other grocery stores.

Thrilled about our shopping cart!

I love a good deal and have been a Safeway club member for a while. Take a look at the pictures in the slide show.  You’ll notice all the deals I got just by having my free membership!

When I cook, D always likes to help.  Now as for the recipe: toast the bread. On one slice put about 1T of pesto sauce. On the other slice place sliced tomato and mozzarella cheese. Place that second slice under the broiler for about 5 minutes. Assemble sandwich, slice, add some cheddar chips to the plate and
good to go! Oh, but don’t forget the raspberry green tea with REAL raspberries!

I think what excited D most about this whole thing was getting to eat outdoors.  He loves it, me not so much.  But tonight it was dinner outside.  Just look how happy he is in the pictures here!

This project has been compensated as part of the June Dairy program for Safeway. Make sure you look for #SafewayDairy.  As always, all opinions are my own.

Do Mother's Forget the Mommy Code?

I've mentioned before (I think!) that I am an advisor to a Jewish teen youth group.  Last week we had the closeout for the summer, inductions for council board (the supervisory board for the area) and awards.  One of my co-advisors and I went to the ceremony (which is too formal for what it actually was) to support our girls.

My coadvisor, S, (who is 5 months preggers with her second son!!!) brought her first son with her.  J is about 2.5 years old.  He's energetic but ADORABLE.  Anyway, we went upstairs to where the ceremony was taking place.  A bunch of chairs were set up for the teens to sit in and perpendicular to those chairs were chairs for the guests.  S and I sat down in the spectator area but J was not in the mood to sit.

Off to the side was a pool table. S sat J on the edge of the table, holding on to him, and gave him one of the pool balls.  He started rolling it into the pocket and would giggle when he made it in.  Now there were other balls in the pocket so it did make a small noise when it went in.  But we are talking about a ceremony being led by teenagers and attended by teenagers. Believe me when I say J's noise was barely noticeable.

But a woman in the spectator area actually shushed us (well ... technically S and J but I was standing there so I'll say us).  S fortunately realized she wasn't doing anything wrong and decided to ignore the woman (who was now also rolling her eyes).

I happen to know this woman.  I know that her youngest child is an advanced teenager.  So it has been a LONG time since she's had a toddler.

Do mother's forget?

Is it possible she has forgotten what it was like to calm her children?  I know one of her girls very well.  While lovely and creative, quiet she is not.  I imagine she gave her mother quite a challenge when growing up.  And I'm positive if that mother had been shushed she would have spoken up in her defense.

Shouldn't all mothers support each other (too naive?).  I'm not even a mother yet but I recognized that this wasn't an "inappropriate" place for a kid and J was definitely not doing anything wrong.

What about motherhood support?  Instead of looking at S with J and flashing the "knowing" mommy smile, she decided to shush and roll her eyes.

Am I the only one who thinks there is something wrong here?  That this woman broke some sort of mommy code?

A picture of my mom just because!

Sunday, June 19, 2011

What makes a father?

D and I do not have kids yet (nor any on the way ... nor are we trying to have any on the way) but that isn't going to be the case for too much longer.  In fact, as I mentioned to D the other day, this could very well be the last Father's day he has without at least a kid on the way. 

So with this reality becoming closer and closer, I've started thinking what makes a father.  What is really important about a father?

[Now that is NOT to say that lesbian couples and/or single moms are not great parents.  However, this blog is dedicated to what I see as best father traits and what I hope to see in D when the time comes.]

I don't know that there is such a thing as a perfect parent, be it mother or father.  But there are definitely qualities that are admirable to have.

D is a natural teacher.  (Both in personality and profession!)  He is going to be great at teaching our kids about dinosaurs, and bugs (because momma HATES bugs!) and politics.  He'll be quick to teach them right from wrong.  He'll also be a great role model regardless if we have a son or a daughter.  Because he'll show our kids how someone should treat their partner (regardless of gender) and how someone should expect to be treated.  He always shows me respect, and I always give him respect.

I love my father.  I am now and always will be a Daddy's girl.  I was the first born after 6 years of trying to get pregnant (I don't like to think about that though).  I was the first child and will always be.  In many ways my personality is that of a typical first born (more of than in another post I am sure!).  My dad always made me feel secure and loved.  My dad made sure I had all my needs met and as many of my wants met as possible.  He always bragged about me (and continues to do so), and always supported me (both emotionally and financially).  He opened his arms to my husband and accepted him as a member of the family upon first meeting him (pretty much).  And taught me what it means to put family before all.  He showed me that even if all of your dreams for life don't work out, so long as you have family, you can still be happy.

One of the best dads in the world
I love and miss my saba (Hebrew for grandfather).  I only knew him 8 short years but loved him.  He taught me that hard work leads to success.  And showed me what true love was.  His love for my grandmother was evident even to my as a young girl.  And his death shook her to her core.  I consider it no coincidence that on his birthday years after he passed my grandmother had a stroke that took her from us.  She was ready to be with my saba again.  If I ever doubted that soul mates exist, I only have to think of them.

There is a part of me that is nervous/anxious about taking that next step with D.  But I am beyond excited to see his face when he holds our child for the first time (going on record, I completely believe we are having a boy first ... and no I am not currently pregnant).  And the love that I will feel for him as I watch him become the excellent father I know he will be.

To all men who are fathers, whether biological, adopted, foster, or just in spirit.  Thank you.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Why My Husband is the Best

Too often we find ourselves critiquing our partner.  Wishing they had done this better, or hadn't done this.  We are all guilty of it.  Some publicly, some VERY publicly (i.e. on a blog!) and others within the privacy of their own home.

This is not one of those blogs.

My husband has one trait, one habit, above all, that I think speaks a lot to his personality and how great he is.

D and I do not always go to bed at the same time.  Whether it is me working late, him working late or #wineparty deep discussions with friends who live far away, it is true.

Now when I go to sleep first, that's it.  I'm down.  I'm out.  Sometimes I wake up when D gets into bed but only to grunt some sort of hello and roll back over.

D is not the same.  Regardless of whether he went to sleep 10 minutes before me or 2 hours before me, always, ALWAYS wakes up enough to ask me for a kiss.  Always.  [Sometimes we'll even have short (a few minute) discussions which he usually does not remember in the morning.  I've taken to introducing "tonight's word" to see if he remembers in the morning.  Sometimes he surprises me.]

Ok back to the kiss.  He always wakes up.  He always asks me for a kiss.

My husband is great about telling me how much he loves me.  And every night no matter how late I crawl into bed, he reinforces it.

I told you he was great!

Thursday, June 16, 2011

How We Communicate

I love talking. I love meeting new people (even though I can be shy, I am overly outgoing to compensate, weird but true). 

I like getting to know people.  Getting to tell stories.  Being able to make people laugh.  It's a great feeling.

I am also someone who uses my hands when I talk. A LOT.  I'm not exactly sure why, but I do.  Maybe it's hereditary. 

I am sometimes very direct and at times have been brutally honest.

So why am I talking about this?

Well I notice people and how other people communicate.  We all have different means of communicating. Some, like me, are hand-users.  Some speak softly. Some over enunciate words or syllables.

I just realized that there is one method of communication I really dislike.  I really, really dislike when someone's primary means of communication (absent a disability) is just by gestures, noises and eye movements.

Now I like sarcasm.  I live for it!  But there is a difference between occasionally rolling your eyes (which I have been known to do) and using this as a primary means of communicating.

When I am speaking with you and compliment a third party not in our presence, I don't understand what a grunt and tilting your head to side means. WHAT DOES IT MEAN?!?!

Do you agree?  Do you disagree?  Do you think I smell?

I'm fine with gestures and body movements accompanying speech, but not replacing it!

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

You Never Really Know Anyone...

(Is it just me or have my posts been kind of serious lately?)

For those who watched Sex and the City, there is a scene where Charlotte and Carrie are walking down the street.  Charlotte is asking Carrie for advice and Charlotte makes a comment about how do we ever know the people we sleep with, then proceeds to ask if her hair is too shiny.

Ok well this isn't about people I am sleeping with.  But that quote always makes me think in general, how well do we know people?

We all have people or couples we are friends with.  Since we aren't there 24/7, how well do we know what is really going on behind closed doors?  Do we really know who these people are?

I have had friends assume, incorrectly, things about myself.  Usually it is innocuous.

But from time to time, I underestimate, or incorrectly believe something about them.  Being the astute judge of character I usually am, I rarely underestimate a person's character.

But at times, I do overestimate.  There are times when I think someone is nice.  I am hoodwinked.  I am fooled.  It doesn't happen often.  But it does happen.

Where later I find out they are not the person I thought.  The couple is not as perfect as they looked from the outside.  And the partner is not as endearing/kind/compassionate as he/she seemed.

I personally have been in two "relationships" (would take too long to explain why that is in quotations now) where I haven't been aware of who the person really is.

It's a scary prospect.  It's upsetting to believe you know someone and turn out to be wrong.

Have you ever been surprised when you realized a personality trait you didn't before recognize in a person?

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Wishing for Divorce...

Ok first let me preface this by saying D and I are NOT getting divorced. Not even close.  But the topic is still very real.

We all know couples, both dating/engaged/married who we "just don't see it."  We don't quite get the relationship.  Or we're not happy with it.

And this can be for a number of reasons.  Hopefully it isn't because of any violence (because that enters a whole different discussion).

I think more regularly you think one person is "better" than the other or they are just not well suited.

Usually, we keep our opinions to ourselves.  We don't tell people what we really think.  And when they are already engaged or married, we almost never tell them we think they should break it off or get divorced.

But what really concerns me here, is what does it say about me to either (a) assume a relationship won't work out or (b) to (somewhat?) actively wish for it to end? And as quickly as possibly with as little pain as possible.

I know that makes me horrible.  I know it sounds horrible.  But just how horrible?

I don't do anything to actively break up people.  So that must mitigate the bad level. Right?

Friday, June 10, 2011

What does family mean to you?

For me, family is everything.  I live, and would die, for my family.  Included in this are some incredibly close friends who have become defacto family members.

But everyone's version of family is different.

My parents (and D's parents) will celebrate their 34th wedding anniversaries this year.  This dynamic and the fact that my parents are still married definitely impacts our relationship.

I see nothing wrong or weird that my immediate family (parents, spouse, two siblings) know exactly how much each other makes (our siblings ... not our parent's income!).  It's totally normal to me that my parents know how much educational debt I have.  And I think it's a sign of a strong family to speak every day.

But some people would not agree.

I have a friend that finds it so strange that we all know everyone's financial information.  Acquaintances who don't think it's "appropriate" to ask a daughter how much she spent on her house.

Not only do I plan to tell my parents how much I pay for my house, if possible I want them to help me pick out a good house!

I appreciate and value my parent's opinions.  I want to learn from their mistakes.

That does not mean I won't go against their wishes if I disagree with them.  But it does mean I will think really hard about something before doing something my parents don't think is wise.

Is this normal?  Is there a "normal" family?  Does a normal family dynamic exist?  Or is each unique?

It's probably the latter. 

Each family is itself a unique group of people with experiences, expectations and demands.

Do I roll my eyes when my dad calls me 5 times in one day because I haven't been near my phone to pick up?  Yes.  But do I feel disconnected when I haven't spoken to him in a few days? Yes.

My mother talked on the phone with her mother multiple times a day when we were growing up.  Pre-caller ID (I know ... unconscionable now!) when the phone would ring, we'd laugh and declare "it's grandma," and we were usually right.

I truly think my family has a healthy relationship.  We are very involved in each other's lives.  True.  But we also care deeply about each other.  And would do anything necessary for each other.

My family changed when I married D.  And now my sister, V, is getting married in November to M.  That again is going to change my family.

M's family dynamic is different than ours and there will be adjustments.

But in the end, we are an extremely close family who ultimately want what is best for the other person.

And I wouldn't have it any other way.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011


I think D is attractive.  Obviously?

But as a general rule, I've found no common traits between other men I find attractive. For instance, I think Morgan [Shemar Moore] from Criminal Minds is really attractive.  He's probably someone you'd expect people to find good on the eyes.  Probably doesn't seem strange.  Don't you agree:


On the same show, I think Spender Reed [Matthew Gray Gubler] is really attractive.  He's not what you'd necessary think is typical "hunk" material, but I think he's so cute!  Thoughts?


Nothing really similar between the two except they are both males.  They are different races, different body types.  And yet I find both equally attractive.

I'm currently at a conference (which is why I've been so MIA blogging this week).  And there are definitely some men there I find attractive.  No I am not attracted to them.  But I still think they are cute.

I wonder why I don't have a type.  And even though I can find lots of men attractive, my husband and last two boyfriends all look similar.  Maybe I am open when it comes to finding someone attractive but then am only attracted to a particular type?

Do you have a "type?"

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Hey Man, can you spare a ... suit?

So this post is going to be quite short (LONG weekend) but I'll fill you in on more details later!

D and I went to State College, PA for a wedding.  About a 3 hour drive each way.  We were staying with friends of D's who were nice enough to let us crash on their futon. 

Friday night we I packed our suitcase.  I usually make a list but decided to wing up.  My dress for the wedding doesn't wrinkle so I just put it in the bag. We don't have a garment bag so I had D put his suit and white shirt by the front door.  The tie and his shoes were packed.

Before we leave Sat I run down our list of things we NEED to have.  We have everything.  And off we go.

We make the three hour drive.  We meet his friends for lunch (our treat! ... only right.) and then follow them back to their apartment.  As we are driving back to the apartment I suddenly have a moment and ask D, "did you pack your suit?"  And the answer is no. (Obviously, because why would I write a post about driving three hours to only find out D did have his suit!) Crazy!

We go to Target. D gets a white shirt and a black pair of slacks.  Not perfect but good enough. Fortunately we had his dress shoes.  And the clothes are reusable so that's good.

I love him.  But this was just a tad frustrating! 

Doesn't he look cute in his suit at another wedding? Ignore me!
Have you ever forgotten something kind of important??

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Melissa and Doug Winner!!

Forgive the obvious, but winning makes me happy.  I love getting free things ... especially free things that I'd actually like to have!

Now I am sure there are some people who spend a LOT of their time entering all different kinds of contests.

That is not me.

But I do enter some.  Usually because I really would like to win the item (though sometimes it is to support a blogger I am "friends" with.)

Well just recently I stumbled upon Sugar Pop Ribbons and found a few giveaways for some really great looking prizes.

So I entered a few.

Now if you are a frequent reader, you know I am not pregnant.  Nor do I have any kids.  Nor am I planning to get pregnant in the near future.

But it would be great to get some baby stuff BEFORE I have a baby.

Well, my recent prize that I won is not for babies.  But rather young children.

I won a Melissa and Doug Wooden Railway set.  And I am thrilled.  D apparently never had a wooden train growing up but always wanted one.  Look how happy he looks here:

It's all mine!

I keep reminding him it is for our future kid, not for him.  He tells me one night I'll be in bed and hear him making choo-choo sounds.  I think I am going to loose this battle.
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