Friday, January 30, 2009

Rude Rule #1

Thank you for tuning in to the ongoing column of Crazy Jugs titled: Now. THAT'S just RUDE! where we hope to debunk all of the rudeness in this world and make it a better place one post at a time. . .

You are at book club and there are a few of you savvy hip moms chatting it up about a funny comment that one of you posted on your Facebook page. Although it is a tad rude that you discuss this matter in front of the other ladies who have yet to discover the wonders and awe of the Facebook social realm (or blogosphere or twitterverse), but not near as rude as this... One lady, the smarty pants know it all says, "Facebook? Seriously? You guys are on Facebook too?"

All the smart savvy ladies in the house nod a big Hell Yeah.

Then, as she rolls her eyes (as if to try to find her brain and her manners) the know it all says, "Why?"

All the smart savvy ladies in da house share the wonders and joys from the long lost middle school reconnections and the easy convenient transfer of dialogue and information and the jokes and, well, you can't forget to tell her about the FLAIR... that is when she interrupts the mod and posh group, spoils all the fun and says:


Um. NO. She did NOT just say that. What? Does transitioning your social world onto Facebook take more time than WRITING LETTERS TO FRIENDS WITH A QUILL AND INK ON A SCROLL or DIALING NUMBERS ON A DIAL LAND LINE or SENDING A SOS USING SMOKE SIGNALS?

The next time a friend shares with you her joys and excitement about her blog or her Facebook activity, NEVER tell her she has too much time on her hands, just because you don't understand it. Ask her to help you find the same joy. Maybe invite her to your house and ask her to help you get accounts set up. And, if you happen to be on a committee, and there is a savvy social media maniac who wants to use a blog and Twitter and Facebook to help get the word out, do not, under any circumstance (even if you have no idea what she/he is talking about) say, "You have too much time on your hands." It shows your ignorance and lack of manners.

The Doyen of Social Appropriateness and Etiquette has spoken. Now, go and improve this world with your manners!
(For more information about this column, visit this post here. And, if you would like to contribute, please, let me know and we can 'link' up!)

Thursday, January 29, 2009


I heard a couple of ladies talking about their grandkids the other evening. They shared about the heartache they had for their grandchildren. One lady, a new grandma was telling us about her daughter's newly born baby and how difficult it is being an hour and a half away from her new granddaughter. The other lady said: Try having a new granddaughter on the other side of the country. I just got back from visiting her over the holidays and I just cry whenever I think of her...

As they both shared the joys and heartaches of their grandmotherhood, I became teary-eyed myself. I ached for my own mother in that moment. My entire life, I thought of my mother as being overly emotional and controlling. We had a very tumultuous relationship. My father, who divorced my mom when I was two years old, had always claimed that my mother should have been institutionalized.

Now, as an adult, I realize that my father's lack of support for my mother was a monumental error and caused my mother's heart to fester and created an emotional disease that led her to an early death at age 58. Since my mother's passing and learning more about my own daughter, I realize that my mother had bi-polar, undiagnosed or realized by any of us.

All through our lives together, I fought with my mother. I couldn't understand her. I was tired of mothering her. I grew up and pushed her away from me. When I became a mother myself, I let her in, just a little, but I was not willing to allow her drama and toxicity into my new marriage and our new family.

It was two years ago this week, she was sick and in ICU. I got a phone call from the hospital. They wanted me, her only child to know that there was a possibility that they may need to have put her on a respirator. I decided to visit her, see if this drama was the real deal or if it was just another scandal to get my attention. She was a hypochondriac and a master manipulator. A snow storm formed icy road conditions which stalled my arrival to the hospital 30 minutes too late and she was put into a coma for her ventilator. She never was able to recuperate. She passed away a few weeks later.

The pain her heart must have carried around her entire life finally got the best of her. I realize I am not responsible for that pain she felt and for the choices she made. However, I can sympathize with the pain that a mother has for her child. A love that is so strong and vulnerable.

Mom, I am sorry that you weren't able to experience your grandchildren. I wish you could have gotten to know them a little longer, a little better. I wish you were around right now, today. I wish I could have shared the joys and also the burdens of my children as I try and raise them, learning about their special needs. I wish you were here so I could call you after these doctor visits and when others don't understand. I think you could have helped me better understand Sienna and her emotional challenges. You and she are so much alike. I wish I would have understood your mental conditions better before you passed away. I may have been more supportive for you. Mom. I miss you today. I still think of you, just not as often as I know you would be thinking of me.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Introducing a New Column to Crazy Jugs

This is the first post of the new ongoing column of Crazy Jugs titled:

Now. THAT'S just RUDE!

I have decided to declare myself the Doyen of Social Appropriateness and Etiquette.

Ever since my sorority days, I have daydreamed of being that house mom who would visit all the fraternities and sororities on campus and teach us heathens about etiquette. I relish in the details of a perfectly set table with all the name place settings and extra forks, plates and glassware. Knowing when the appropriate time to take the napkin, fold it properly and set it on your lap is a social standard of manners. And, it is sadly becoming a lost art.

Combine the traditions of formal dining etiquette and table manners with the impact of technology and Sponge Bob and the world of proper communication and relationships easliy goes to hell in a hand basket, "heaven for betsy," as your grand mother may have once said while sitting on her davenport!

Witnessing a severe decline in social behaviors not only among the youth, but us older folks as well, I take this charge. A charge to teach, advocate and share when I hear an inappropriate comment or see an example of social dysfunction.

Be aware friends who have found my blog. If YOU happen to be the perpetrator of a rude comment, you will be exposed here and now on this new column titled: Now. THAT'S just RUDE!

Better mind your manners, friend.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Drink Order

and please, make it sugar free with skim.


Monday, January 26, 2009

Need for More than Just Sensory Needs

This week Sarah is scheduled to be assessed to see whether or not she will qualify for services after she turns three years old. Her birthday is in March. This past year, we have had services from a 0 - 3 state/government agency that has helped us in many ways.

Although Sarah struggles with sensory issues, I think I am struggling with my role of parenting more. I struggle with knowing if her tantrums are typical. I need to know if her social inappropriate ways like licking cold windows to cope with transitions, biting to rip through blankets when frustrated, needing gum or candy all day long, not eating with utensils and only eating mushy baby like foods, tearing, short attention span, biting ice until her tongue bleeds to drown out noises, hiding and escaping when surrounded by a noisy environment, etc., are all normal like behaviors.

She can talk. Well, she can most of the time, except for that busy day at one of our last play dates when she stopped talking for the rest of the day, or when her older sister, who has Aspergers, is around. Her big sis is a challenge to be around even for me and I am an adult! There is a lot of stress and unpredictability when big sis is around so Sarah tends to hide away, not have her confidence.

She is smart. She knows her letters and colors, expect when asked, then she won't respond. Or, maybe I just can't get her attention long enough to answer my question when I ask her: What color is this crayon?

She's cuddly. She loves to snuggle and be held. This is such a blessing to me since her big sis has tactile defensiveness and won't allow me to touch her, hug her, kiss her, brush her hair - unless it is on big sis' terms.

She is social. She likes "her freenz," she talks about them when they aren't around. She'll make a drawing and say: Deez is fer Aleezabit my fweend.

I think she will do just fine in school and life if she doesn't qualify for services. But, I want what is best for her. If she needs special services, I want her to be eligible. And, if she doesn't NEED the special services, then, I want to be at peace about that too. The problem I am faced with though is that this week's testing may not gather all of the deficits along with the strengths that my little one has. Suffice to say, a one hour meeting with a psychologist, OT and a parent taking a test doesn't measure Sarah holistically. And, I feel like if she were eligible for services, than, it would validate my concerns as a mother. My extended family and friends would then believe me and not just brush my ill-parenting under the rug as ill-parenting. Getting services would help me get some support I desperately need to better meet Sarah's needs!

Prayer for today:
God, I call out to you on this! You have placed Sarah in my hands as a gift from you. You have asked me to care for her and I want to do the best I can. I feel like a failure most of the time at this mom stuff. I feel like I don't have the mental and emotional strength to make the best decisions for Sarah, or her big sis. I get downtrodden, feel helpless and hopeless. I need you to guide me, I need you to help me and my daughters with patience. Help me to help them grow into the women you want them to be. Take the wheel for me today God. My family tree's roots are not strong, please nourish me anyhow!

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

You Must Have A Lot of Time On Your Hands - Oh No You Didn't Just Say THAT to ME!

Don't you just hate that when people say that to you?

I made homemade cupcakes for my daughter's first day of school this year. I made an extra one for the teacher because I love to brown nose and want to do everything I can to help my kid get A's I wanted to teach my daughter about service and respecting her teachers. Instead of the teacher saying, "Thanks! How sweet!" She replies, "You have way too much time on your hands! I could use your help in my classroom this year!"

Hmmm. Cutting construction paper and sharpening pencils was not what I envisioned doing at my stage of life, but, servant-hood is humbling, so I do what is needed at the expense of paper-cuts and carpel tunnel from the manual pencil sharpener.

So, in case you are wondering what a stay at home mom does all day? I cannot speak for all, but this mom keeps her to do list pretty full. Care to take a glimpse of my to do note for today?

- Email contract for new brochure design for new client
- Start concepts for new brochure design
- Update resume on LinkedIn with new title, "New Media Juggernaut" in hopes to more freelance gigs
- Play Jenga with the dirty dishes in the sink
- Follow up with friend interested in a travel package and cross fingers that they will book it
- Find a new vacation destination for another friend
- Book a weekend at a hotel with a pool for family to celebrate daughter's 3rd Bday
- Get agenda ready for committee meeting tomorrow
- Kick off the new chairs for charity fundraiser
- Help market and promote Tour De Max for Tri Kappa
- Send flair to friends who just sent me flair (thanks BTW!)
- Check blogs, emails, tweets
- Schedule doctor appointments, arrange to pick up monthly prescriptions
- Schedule home assessments and therapy for Sophia
- Go to play date
- Reschedule Great Grandma Cook to come over next week so I can volunteer at the school
- Update and promote online advertising campaigns at a new blog experiment I am trying
- Balance laundry stack till the weekend
- Smile
- Be a good mom, wife, friend
- Follow up on dreams and vision for my life
- Review list and revise daily

Just because I love facebook and other social online media, doesn't mean that I have too much time on my hands. It just means that I can be efficient. It's called multitasking. Some people call it thriving under pressure.

I call it: Terrified of boredom and resistant to loneliness. It's my life. It's what I do. Welcome.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

More Things Change, More They Stay The Same

What our leaders should be bequeathing all of us ...

"The budget should be balanced, the Treasury should be refilled, Public Debt should be reduced, the arrogance of officaldom should be tempered and controlled, and the assistance to foreign lands should be curtailed lest Rome become bankrupt. People must again learn to work, instead of living on public assistance."

Cicero ... 55 B.C.

Monday, January 12, 2009

"Help! There's a Uniboob Growing Out of My Neck!"

Imagine my dismay when I noticed my uniboob popping out from the neckline of the back of my new black and white tweed coat!

And, it isn't the only coat that has uniboobs growing. My casual black coat also has an enormous uniboob. I mean with such a huge long uniboob, it's a wonder I don't trip on it when I walk backwards!!!

But, it doesn't stop there, many of my shirts and sweaters have, well, little duoboobbies popping out too. It can be rather embarrassing.

All this talk about uniboobs and duoboobies, you would think that they are universal enough, a common term that everyone can relate with. However, I realize that I probably should explain, define uniboob and duoboobies.

A uniboobie is a malfunction that occurs in the cloth near the center of the neckline of your clothing. The cloth becomes stretched and tends to point upward and outward. Duoboobies occur in pairs where one perky bunching of clothing pops up from one of each shoulder.

Uniboobies and duoboobies can be dangerous and will destroy your wardrobe if they are not handled correctly.

I need your help!

Do you know of a cure to this problem? Have you been a victim of this clothing boob phenonomen and can share ways that you have coped or overcome the destruction of this fashion faux-pas, please comment below!

Better yet, if you would like to include a link to photos of your own fashion let downs, please include it in the comment. No rated R photos please - it isn't that kind of blog!

Thanks! And, together, maybe we can put an end to uniboobs and duoboobies for all womankind!

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Messenger of the Snowpeople

Note to self:
Never make jokes about snowmen snowpeople just before a full moon. (See previous post.)

Apparently, I was a little too full of myself and was not at all sensitive to the entire snow race. You may recall from a previous post where I wrote about being captured by an angry group of snowmen snowpeople.

Due to modern technology and science, these snowpeople are able to clone and recreate themselves into little snowpeople. They are also able to communicate with one another wirelessly. However, you need not worry of this organized group snowballing and becoming too massive or destructive, they really do not mean any harm.

I would like to share with you my experience!

They teletransportibinated me to their leader, the moon. (I had no idea that the moon had so much power over the snowpeople!)

And the moon said to me in a silent whisper:
We are the snowpeople. For centuries, we have idled while just standing and staring. We have noticed that your young people are not creating us as they once did in the past.

Your youngsters do not delight in us as they once did. We want to bring joy to the world and to the youngsters, our creators. But as they continue to opt for indoor activities it creates a non-snowpeople environment where the world is hostile.

We the snowpeople are filled with love. We are cool. We are fat. We just want to be ourselves. We just want to be loved by our creators. When we are created, we can't help but smile.

Look into our eyes and you will see a sincere snowperson. Take a moment to walk in our shoes and you will not go far. Care for us and we will bring you joy. Our smiles are contagious.

Please take back our message to your people.

I stayed and we talked a lot. They really are nice people. I told them about blogging and tweeting and helped them get accounts set up. If you are interested in reaching out to them, here is their contact information:

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Snowmen have feelings too

I woke up this morning stepped outside to get my paper and saw this:


They just stood there and stared at me. They nailed a note on my door. It reads:

Geez. I think they must have read my blog post earlier. Apparently they have feelings but where is their sense of humor?

I reply:
Hey little snow people... I'm sorry.

Then, they started throwing snow balls at me. I was like:
GROSS. How rude!

Then, they picked me up and took me to their leader...

to be continued...

Define Organic


ORGANIC. I love organic stuff... But, what is it actually?

What does it mean when something is organic? ORGANIC is a descriptive buzz word that is tagged on to produce, juice, gardens, clothes, soaps, lotions and the list goes on and on. It brings an instant attraction in my mind when I think of something being organic. It makes me think that organic is holy, good, God-breathed, slow to develop, true, flawless to the heart and soul but not necessarily to the eye, non-superficial, non-mass-produced, noncompetitive, all natural, robust in flavor and nutrients, fresh and alive.

But, what does being organic really mean?

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Eating Habits: Dangerously Unethical and Other Thoughts to Ponder

I feel like a giant cannibal while eating gingerbreadmen.

I really must stop. It's not polite.

And then, I wonder, when vegetarians chow down on animal crackers, are they cheating?

When I crave a Ritz, do all I really want is a salted cracker? Don't I want so much more? Ritz. They really disappoint. Where is the glamour, the pizzazz, the dancing and fancy gowns? It. Is. Just. A. Cracker.

When snowmen melt, where do they go?

How do you know if it is a snowman, not a snow woman? I don't see extra snow balls around it...

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Fitness Queen or Flatulence-Challenged Middle Aged Fat Housewife?

I went to play group today and a friend overheard me talking about various things like my recent spinning class and wiiFit attempts and she shouted above the toddler toy whistling bang bang toys, "Hey, I didn't realize you were such a fitness queen."

To which I replied, politely, smiling "Yeah, I have always been a workaholic work out person."

I wanted to say: Fat people can work out too ya know!

The past year, I have spent endless hours jogging, walking, elliptical, wiiFit, and yesterday I started my first spinning class. There were 25 bikes that were being used efficiently by 24 very fit teenaged girls, and well, me. As we were warming up, the perky size 1 instructor pointed directly at me and said into her Madonna concert mic, "Are you a first timer?"

To which I replied, politely, smiling "No, I have done spinning, just not at this gym."

I wanted to say: Just because I am middle aged and fat doesn't mean I don't enjoy cool work outs like SPINNING. In fact, I used to do spinning all the time before I was married with kids.

Then I pondered to myself: Was that really 80 pounds and a DECADE ago!

Can't this chubby middle aged housewife catch a break?

Another friend invited me to go with her to today's Pilate's class. I declined. Ever since I passed gas at the last Pilate's class I attended four years ago, I have been sort of shy to it! Am I the only flatulence-challenged middle aged chubby housewife who can't do Pilate's?

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Dog Walter Looking for a Good Home

Sarah's toy has a serious case of flatulence. Last night, just minutes after a struggle to help her fall asleep, I kept hearing a strange noise coming from her room. It was Walter the Farting Dog.

I stealth-like sat in the dark, waiting for him to let another 'outburst.' I had the giggle shakes. The second he did, I dug through the basket of other stuffed animals, those poor stuffed victims of Walter's 'shenanigas.' I grabbed Walter, left her room and tried to find the off 'butt-on.' There wasn't one.

Now, we are left with a noisy Walter, randomly farting when ever he choses.

Monday, January 5, 2009

My Bucket List 2009

On New Year's Day we watched Bucket List. This movie forces you to walk a tight rope between laughing and crying. Jack Nicholson's character is much different from his other types as he is faced with his mortality and the meaning of his life.

There was one quote from the script that I am especially intrigued by that was told by the character of Morgan Freeman. I don't actually recall the specifics, it was a question that some old sage would ask people right before they died. It was a two question test. The first question was:

During your life, were you joyful?

Next question, did you bring joy to other's life?

Interesting to ponder.

The most pronounced theme of this movie was creating a bucket list, a list of items you would like to do before you kick the bucket. Since it was new year's, the most opportune time to create resolutions, I thought I would create my own bucket list. Since I am a list maker by nature, I thought that this would be a great list to develop! Here we go:

My Bucket List:
- Spot an eagle soaring through the sky or resting on whatever eagle's rest on...
- Run a 5K.
- Take my husband and daughters to CAUX, Switzerland.
- Trace my husband's and my own genealogy back to at least 3 generations.
- Write a novel titled, "The Legacy of the Crazy Jugs."
- Create crazy jugs with my daughters.
- Be an aerobics instructor.
- Travel on bike with husband either through Italy or Michigan or Napa Valley for our vacation.
- Visit family in Australia.
- Take family on a missions trip to Africa.
- Have an easel and oils and paint landscapes.
- Be a photographer.
- Always have opportunities to learn and teach others.

Do you have a bucket list? What are your top items that you have done or that you are planning to do next?