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April 22, 2018

With neighbors like these

Stu is the construction worker who has built most of our kitchen.  He is an older fella from Poland who speaks English pretty clearly, smiles constantly, and tries to shuffle out of my way whenever he thinks he might be in my space.  He is a hard worker and very conscientious.

I opened the sliding door to the deck on Monday when I saw that he was setting up his saw.  'I am so happy to see you, Stu!  I could kiss you.'  Tank was making his breakfast - or more accurately standing around waiting for me to prepare his fruit smoothie.  'He doesn't want to kiss you.  You are like 60 years old or something,' he sneered at me.  I admit that I did look frightening.  I had on my pajamas and a hoodie.  My hair was standing straight up and I was wearing my glasses.   Tank was lucky that he didn't end up wearing his smoothie.  I am not even remotely close to 60.  Just saying.

The tile for the back splash apparently was out of stock when I ordered it and we were waiting for the next shipment to arrive from Italy.  Waiting for 3 months.  A.  I was not aware I had ordered tile that was made in Italy, or that was not in stock.  B.  I had no idea that the tile was the holdup.   A little communication might have been nice.  Or,  just too much to ask.

Most of the back splash is done now.  It looks awesome!  I'm told that the hood (cabinetry surround thing - because the mechanical parts have been sitting here for months) is on its way.  I think the electrician might come in the next few days -translation:  my new chandelier that was back ordered might be hung - weird because I was convinced that it would go up weeks after the kitchen was complete.  Little did I know that the kitchen would not be done by mid April.  Funny stuff.

A man rang my doorbell Monday afternoon.  He was from the city.  He was at my house to let me know that a neighbor had called to complain because there was debris in my backyard.  Yes, I do have the world's worst neighbors.  Trust me.

To give you a visual:  we are on the corner and people drive into the neighborhood and have a good view of the back of our house from the road.  I celebrated when I came home from Scotland because the dumpster that I feared had become a permanent fixture on my driveway was finally gone.  Why, oh why, did the workers not dispose of the tangle of gutters while they had a dumpster?  I swear nothing was thrown into the dumpster in the last four months.  The gutters were removed MANY months ago and tossed in a heap next to our deck.  Apparently one of my delightful neighbors did not enjoy this.

This is a depiction of the rear of our house.  When you all come over for a barbecue someday soon, you will see that my deck doesn't actually look like a picket fence.  And I drew this too close to the edge of the paper.  The old gutters -seen here at the bottom left of the page - were actually around the corner of the deck away from the street - so they would technically be further to the left and then around the side.  Still visible from the street, but they weren't smack right at the back of my deck.  

I have a pretty good idea of who it was.  If it was a normal neighbor, they would have had a conversation with me, like:  'Oh, the dumpster is gone.  They must be almost done.  Any idea what they plan to do with the gutters left out back?'  The crazy neighbors- that look for anything to get their undies in a twist about- must have called he city.

I wanted to spray paint a giant white sheet and hang it from my garage door.  'WE HAVE THE WORST NEIGHBORS.  EVER.' 

Stu promised to haul away all of the junk the next morning when he came back to caulk the tile.  He is not responsible for the mess.  It was the roofing guys.  I turned into the neighborhood after dragging 4 tots to Tanks' ortho appointment this morning, because Coach had a patient (this is usually his late start day.  Grrr).  I thought, 'Oh, I should take a picture of the debris for my blog.'  Stu was too fast.  He had already taken it away.  Thus my beautiful rendering above.

Stu is the best.  I still might kiss him.  I dare you to describe a worse neighbor than mine.

(I planned to share a link to one particular nightmare neighbor story that reminded me of this.  I have been paging thru the many posts I have written about the incurably, self-involved, holier-than-though, pompous Mary Ann-worst-neighbor-extraordinaire, (yes, I have posted 5 different actual incidents involving Mary Ann - if you are unfamiliar, I urge you to read all about her.  As usual, I couldn't make this stuff up) and I am shocked that I never blogged about this very funny neighborhood incident that I don't believe was Mary Ann related.  I live near more than one crazy.  Really.  So, I will just have to share that one next.  Brace yourself.  It is a guaranteed good chuckle).

April 20, 2018

how to deal with an un-invitation? plus informative side-notes

Several weeks ago my sister in law emailed family to find out who would be available to celebrate her daughter's First Communion.  Her email went like this:
 Sent: Wednesday, April 4, 2018 10:21 AM
 Subject: Abbey’s First Communion

With Abbey’s First Communion approaching next month (Sat., May
12th at 2pm), I just wanted to get a feel for who thinks
they will be able to make it. I know Pat and Connie have
their music competition again, and Betty has prom. I
don’t need exact numbers, just an idea! 

Sent from my
iPhone
My kids play Irish music-just like my brother Pat's kids.  I was trying to figure out which of my kids might go to St. Louis to compete in the Midwest Irish music championships the weekend of May 11th.  Mini's 8th grade dance is scheduled for Friday night the 11th.  If she opted to attend her dance, then she COULD go to St. Louis on Saturday.  She would miss the duets and trios on Friday evening.  She would also miss solos on Saturday morning.  That would limit her involvement to the Sat. night ceili band competition.

Mini wanted to go to some part of the competition.  Tank was ticked that she would consider going to her dance.  He skipped his 8th grade dance in order to attend the music competition in
St. Louis last year.  His theory:  I skipped so we could do a duet, so you should skip so that we could do a duet.

Mini (who has been playing fiddle for 6 years) and Tank (who has played the concert flute for years --just got his Irish flute last Christmas) have only had a couple of lessons all year.  Long story, but my sister in law Connie who was teaching Mini stopped giving lessons.  She opted to grandfather Mini in and keep her as a student.  That only resulted in 2 lessons.  Connie is just too busy.  Mini wasn't feeling up to competing with Tank based on their lack of serious lessons all year.  Side note:  I just found a new teacher who will teach Mini and Curly fiddle via skype.

I responded to my sis in law RIGHT AWAY to let her know that she might need to count Mini and I and maybe one other kid out.
On Apr 4, 2018, at 10:40 AM, Ernie Shenanigan wrote:

think Mini and I and possibly another kid will be going to
st Louis too.  Haven't finalized that yet.
ernie
Please note that she said she didn't need exact numbers.  Her next email totally caught me by surprise.

 Subject: Re: Abbey’s First Communion
To: Ernie Shenanigan
Date: Thursday, April 5, 2018, 10:24 PM

That’s fine. Since you’re planning on going to
St. Louis and so many can’t make it (only Marie, Delaney
and Ann who is a maybe for dinner), we’re going to go
to a restaurant instead. I’m only able to get a
reservation for 14 at this point. It’ll just be your
parents, 
Marie and Delaney, and my sister’s family and                                                      maybe Ann, depending on timing around Betty’s                                                                picture’s for prom. 
Sent from my
iPhone
WHAT?  Just because Mini and I and maybe another kid might not attend, she decided not to invite ANYONE from my family????  Help me out here.  I can't wrap my brain around it.

I am full of side notes today:  she and my brother just bought a mansion.  She almost never entertained at their last home because she always claimed they didn't have enough space.  They had a very nice 4 bedroom home with a living room, dining room, eat in kitchen, family room, full unfinished basement, backyard, etc.   We have a big family .  My siblings and I have given our folks 22 grandchildren.  Trust me, there was ample space for us in their last house.  I do believe that she gets overwhelmed entertaining.  I think she WANTS everything from a decorating standpoint to be perfect and appear as if it was out of a magazine.  (None of us really care.  No reason for her to raise the bar to host our group.  Really).  So, I get that she prefers a restaurant.  She couldn't find a place to accommodate the rest of us?

In the meantime, I told Mini that I didn't want to go all the way to St. Louis for a quick competition.  We would have to stay over.  I always end up driving 5 hours home from this event on Mother's Day. 
I took a few days to ponder my response.  I wanted to say something along the lines of, 'Hi Crazy!  I know I am the most awesome person in my immediate family - but did you really decide not to invite the rest of the gang because I might not be there?'  Instead I approached it like a grown up.
On Apr 7, 2018, at 10:32 AM, Ernie Shenanigan wrote:
That’s fine, but not sure if you realize that most of our family will still be in town.  I actually think I have Mini convinced that it doesn’t make sense to go all the way to St. Louis for ceili band only.  Mini has her 8th grade dance Friday night so she thought she was going to go to St. Louis for Saturday but that means she misses solos and duets - and just shows up to do ceili band.  If you want to keep your reservation the way you have it, then don’t worry about it.  Maybe if more seats become available, you can add us.  

Thanks,
Ernie
Eleven days later.  That's right.  ELEVEN.  Side note #3 in case anyone is counting:  I typically get along fine with my sister in law.  She is very sweet.  I don't hang with her much outside of family events.  She is all about designer clothes for her kids - they don't wear hand-me-downs EVER, concerns herself with appearances, and has NEVER once answered a ringing phone - be it a cell phone or a landline.  It baffles me.  So consider that before you suggests that I call her.  She doesn't work.  Her kids are all in school.  She is a nice person who is crazy about my brother, devoted to her kids (spoils them pretty sufficiently- especially Abbey), and respectful and kind to my parents.   Her long-awaited response:

 Hey Ernie! Sorry I’m just responding now! Once the numbers started coming in and I knew that only 3 cousins had confirmed (Deirdre, Jimmy and Jill), I realized it would be a small party/more of a big kid/adult party. I didn’t want to have a typical house party where Abbey wouldn’t have anyone to play with. She said she’d rather go to a restaurant and have dessert at our house later. That was fine w Mike and me, so I reserved a couple of tables as soon as I could! But if you’re not going to go to St. Louis or if you think some of your kiddos will make it, we’ll have it at our house. I hope this weather will be better by then!!


Sent from my iPhone

WHAT?!!??  Now, Coach and I are going to dictate that they host a party at their house even though she has shared with me that she would prefer to have it at a restaurant?  I think not.  I tried to imagine if I had made a similar oversight.  I would instantly email the person back and say, 'Sorry!  I don't know what I was thinking by not counting your other family members.  Glad some of you are in town (and maybe all of you).  Invitation to follow.'

I would not have the nerve to make the potential guest feel like they were put upon -that their presence might mean that the party take on a different feel/location entirely.  IS IT JUST ME???

This is the frame I ordered for Abbey. 
It is my favorite 1st Communion gift. 
I get it at personalization mall.  (link)
Guests can sign the frame and write a message. 
Such a sweet keepsake. 
Ironically my family will not be signing
the frame, because
WE WON'T BE THERE!
I have yet to respond.  Curly is upset because she really wants to go.  She is only 2 years older than Abbey.  I am thinking that I will call and leave a million messages for 'I-don't-answer-calls-sis-in-law'.  When she finally calls me back, I will just ask her if she can possibly fit Curly in at the restaurant.  I will point out that I have no interest in dictating where the party is held, so best if we just stay home.

I will recover from not spending time with my family.  Seriously.  That is not the point. 

Thoughts?  Tell me you have never heard the likes of this?  Please.  Because I feel like it is nuts.  Or do you think I am nuts?  I am ready and waiting. 


April 18, 2018

attacking mandarin oranges

Tank is not willing to pack fresh fruit in his lunch for school.  He will sometimes bring a banana, but I have very little confidence that he actually eats it.  His argument is that the fruit is warm or mushy by the time he eats it.   In case you are a mom (and therefore uncool by default) then you must be aware of the trend:  it is dorky to take a lunchbox to high school.  Thus begins the viscous circle:  no lunch box, no cold packs, no fresh fruit (at least for Tank).

My 6 foot 1 freshman isn't a huge fan of apples.  This is ludicrous because his mother buys the most expensive, delicious apples known to man.  The checker at the grocery store frequently asks me if I seriously intend to spend $40 or more on a weekly supply of apples.  I don't mind spending more for something that is wonderfully delicious AND healthy.  Where else can you get that?  If you haven't sampled a Honey-crisp apple - what are you waiting for?

Tank's before school breakfast routine doesn't include fresh fruit either.  His morning consists of us begging him to find socks to wear, to not get 'caught up' with the tots I sit for, and to just make progress in general to be ready on time.

There IS ample fresh fruit available in our house.  Honest.  This kid's lack of fruit intake has been a sticking point with me for most of the school year.

I packed cans of mandarin oranges for our trip to Scotland.  Unlike Tank, I don't like to be without fruit.  While I was in the shopping-for-Scotland mode, I picked up a few of those single serving cup packs of mandarin oranges to see if Tank would take that to school.  My purchase was a big hit.  Tank began to take a fruit cup in his sack lunch.

On Sunday I ran to Costco.  I purchased a case of mandarin orange cups that would be perfect for Tank to toss in his lunch.  Buying in bulk is the way I roll whenever possible.

My mistake was that I didn't open the thick cardboard box that held the 20 plastic cups of mandarin oranges.  I foolishly left the box on the pantry shelf.  Tank struggled to open the box himself.  Mornings around here resemble feeding time at the zoo.  Chaos.  I was only vaguely aware of Tank's 10 second attempt to rip open the box of mandarin oranges.

I mass produce peanut butter and jelly sandwiches most mornings and if I am not careful I lose track of who needs what.  I have been known to gift one kid with two sandwiches and less fortunate kid with none.  The tots I sit for eat PB&J, so I make theirs in the morning while I am making the sandwiches for my gang - then I set them aside in a Tupperware container or an empty bread loaf bag.  Recently I stuffed the tot lunch in an empty bread loaf bag.  When I cleaned up the kitchen I absentmindedly put the bread bag back in the bread drawer.  I enjoy creating little scavenger hunts for myself.  The idea behind the one-time-sandwich-making assembly line is to simplify my life.  Imagine my excitement in searching for the previously prepared sandwiches at noon that day.  Baby crying offered the perfect backdrop for me as I dug thru the trash and shuffled paperwork around on the counter before I opened the bread drawer.

These are the surviving mandarin orange cups.
  My advice on opening the box with a steak knife: 
Don't try this at home, all you impatient kids
out there who are suddenly so
committed to eating fruit you
can't control yourself.
Sorry, I digress.  Just trying to paint a vivid picture of our morning fun.

Before I could stop him, Tank-who wasn't making any progress opening the box with his bare hands and noodle arms- attempted to open the box with a steak knife.  He punctured the side of the box with the knife.  Ed was sitting at the island eating his breakfast, 'What are you doing, you idiot?!'  I grabbed the box from Tank.  Too late.  It was now leaking mandarin orange juice.

I ripped open the box and we found the leaker.  Tank put that one in a plastic bag for his lunch.  I made him rinse the rest of the containers off in the sink and spread them out on a towel.  He also had to address the juice leakage issue that was all over the floor.

I won't pretend that a string of bad words didn't escape my mouth.  It just happens that way.

Later in the day when I accidentally knocked one of the orange cups off its drying perch on the towel (because I wanted to make Tank come home and put them all in the pantry), the lid popped open from the force and it splattered all over the floor.  More of a mess to clean up.  And of course, more bad words.

I left that one off to the side, so I would remember to make Tank put it in a baggie for his lunch.  Curly hopped off the bus and promptly picked up the cup with the compromised lid and asked me if she could eat it.  She, of course, asked me this while she was waving it around at me.  It leaked all over the floor AGAIN.

This is the thanks I get for trying to get my kid to eat healthy.


April 16, 2018

bouncing bleachers: offensive or acceptable?

As I type this, I am sitting on metal bleachers at Reggie’s travel basketball game.  Have you been there?  Not the travel game, but the bleachers.  Agony.  I do have one of those bleacher seats, but I never remember to bring it.    

Coach is out of town this weekend helping teach a class near DC.  He is scheduled to get back around midnight Sunday.  I will be begging for some physical therapy work from him after my time on these god forsaken bleachers.  There must be a better way to seat tall people during a sporting event.  I know, I know, I can always stand - and I probably will as soon as I am done describing this mom to you.  

Reg was supposed to have 3 games.  The tournament is only 11 minutes from home, so when they cancelled the middle game (first I rejoiced) we ran home for a bit.  Nothing like finding time for a grocery run to make my day. 

Anyway, I found a spot on the bleachers just before Reggie’s first game.  I tried the front row because there was no one sitting there, but when I realized that my knees were going to serve as handy chin rest I opted to move up a row.  A mom and her 10 year old daughter sat behind me.  A couple of teenage-ish guys sat far enough down from them that someone could have fit between them.  

Now when I say teenage-ish, I mean I have no idea how old these two guys were.  I do know that they liked to use sound effects in conjunction with their cheering.  Like:  low groaning as a kid dribbles expertly thru a bunch of defenders - when he shoots and scores the groaning is followed by a quick side comment to the buddy- along the lines of ‘no he di-int!’  They wore their baseball hat brims wide and flat and their clothes baggy.  They were too skinny for me to gauge their age with much accuracy.  Could have been college age - I guess.  Or high school.  They were kind of punky looking, if I was trying to classify them.  But I wasn't.  They sort of reminded me of the love interest of the fake sister in the movie 'We're the Millers', if you are looking for a visual.  And if you haven't seen that movie, and you are looking for a laugh - I highly recommend. 

Anyway I was watching the game.  I noticed that the bleachers were bouncing.  Someone was tapping a foot or something.  A bit later the mom behind me leaned over the empty spot next to her daughter where no one was sitting.  She got the attention of the punky guy closest to her, 'Excuse me, excuse me.  Can you stop bouncing please?' 

OK, so she was polite.  Big deal.  I found her request RUDE.  Coach often has one leg that is in constant motion.  So, perhaps I am immune to the annoyance it can cause.  I still COULDN'T believe that she told him to stop bouncing his leg.  This is a public place where people sit.  If you don't like the arrangement - get up and go find a better seat, or stand. 

Yes, I drew her wearing a tiara.
  She wasn't wearing one at the game.
 I'm assuming that she just left
it to be shined by her staff that day. 

The lines around the guy's leg are
supposed to denote movement. 
Cut me some slack.  I sat in very
uncomfortable bleachers
 for a big part of my day.
Travel sports teams are weird.  Since the teammates are not from our school- I don't know who they are.  I also don't know who their parents are.  Eventually I deduced that this woman's kid was on the other team.   I sit at travel games and cheer for my kid.  When I am not cheering, I can't help but people watch.  This game offered some very entertaining peeps. 
After punky kid was told to stop bouncing, he told her, 'Oh sorry.  My bad.'  Then he leaned over to punk buddy, 'What?  Who is SHE?!'  He said it in the same low, cartoon-like, whispery voice that he used when he was adding sound effects to the action in the game. 

Part of me wanted to turn around and agree with him.  'Yeah, who IS she?  What is up with that?'  I didn't do it.  Sometimes I opt not to cause a scene.  This woman must have been a princess somewhere.  People must bow down and worship her.  These punky kids were entertaining.  They were enjoying the game.  They weren't bothering anyone.  A bouncing leg - please.  Oh, she aggravated me. 

I think I would only have considered scolding someone next to me in the bleachers if they were swearing profusely in front of young children.  Not that it would have both
ered my children, because they live with me.  A potty mouthed mother.  If I sit down next to someone with horrible body odor, I don't tell them to leave.  I choose to stand up and go somewhere less offensive. 

What would tick you off enough to tell someone to 'quit it' in the bleachers?  And have you gotten up the nerve to do so?  Please share!

April 14, 2018

Do eyebrows grow back?

Tank and Eddie had an early dismissal on Tuesday.  Slightly early.  They left school at 2:00 and worked out at our top-notch health club.  To be clear, we would never belong to this place if Coach's physical therapy clinic wasn't in the same building.  The club offers Coach (and our family) a free membership - which is why he can NEVER, NEVER, EVER quit his job or piss off the people who grant him the free membership, because that would suck.  It's a pricey place. 

Coach finishes work early on a Tuesday, so he ended up working out after work.  His workout overlapped partly with the boys' workout.  He arrived home a bit before they did.  Because let's face it, the boys are interested in playing basketball, swimming, lifting, etc.  Coach is more into a 1 hour cardio workout, a shower, and being done.

When Coach arrived home, he talked to me for a few minutes.  Then he asked me if Tank had called me.  He followed that up with 'Did Tank send you a picture of himself?'  No and no.  'Wait till you see what he did to his face.'  OK, WHAT?!  Who says that to a mother?

Apparently, Tank was lifting weights.  It is true that I do make fun of him for having noodle arms when he plays basketball. 

After his basketball games I was always like, 'What is the deal with your arms?  You are the tallest kid out there.  You should be out-rebounding EVERYONE.'  Instead if, let's say, an opponent grazes the air particles that surrounds Tank's arm it causes Tank's arm to waiver and wiggle.  He doesn't have the muscles to hold his position and GRAB THE DAMN BALL.  (Don't even get me started on what happens when someone throws their arms up using utter strength and collides with Tank's noodles.  It's mind blowing). 

In case you haven't figured it out by now, it is not a total cakewalk being a Shenanigan.  We are not about to beat around the bush.  We don't overthink giving someone feedback - particularly if they aren't giving an athletic activity their all.  So, I may have suggested that he lift something besides a bag of chips or whatever available junk food he can get his meat-hooks on.  I did not mean to imply that he lift weights without supervision.  Tank can't put his laundry away without supervision.

This is 24 hours later. 
It doesn't look so bad in this photo. 
There is definitely some
eyebrow missing though. 
I tried to rotate this thing,
but this is the best I could do. 
Computer is fighting with me,
and winning.
Apparently, he was benching.  He tried to place the bar back on the stand (Forgive me for not using the proper terminology here.  Other than 'benching' - that word I have heard tossed around by my guys).  The bar was not securely in the stand.  Tank thought it was.  The bar dropped on one side and grazed his face.  Some part of the bar sheered off a chunk of Tank's skin above his eye and thru his eyebrow. 

Coach explained that Tank showed up at his PT clinic just before Coach was going to walk across the hall to start his workout.  Tank was holding a towel to his face that was covered in blood.  Coach dressed his open wound and scolded him for not being more careful.  His office manager, who is like family, got a chuckle out of Coach's lack of empathy.  Coach turned to her and said, 'Yeah, well trust me he isn't going to get any sympathy from Ernie.'

This is true.  I questioned his safety procedures when lifting.  Then I expressed my concerns that his bushy eyebrow would grow back.

Tank on the other hand was very pumped up about going to school on Wednesday.  He was concocting various violent and impressive scenarios about how his face was injured.  I have no doubt that he convinced classmates of something nutty.  I sometimes wonder if he really attends
class.  I imagine that he walks around 'working' the place.  Greeting people.  Joking with them.  And now - showing off his partially missing eyebrow. 

April 12, 2018

not my favorite repair man

The appliance guy came back because the parts he ordered were in.  Just as in the Monty Python movies, there was much celebrating.  Celebrating by family members, because we got chills anticipating ice.

The guy showed up and asked me for the flap door thing that Tank broke off of the interior of the freezer when it still smelled like a new appliance.  I was confused.  Tank broke it.  I didn't still have it.  I threw it away. 

The man laughed.  He laughed a lot.  I frowned.  He informed me that the broken flap door thing had tiny screws in it that he needed to install the new flap door thing.  Why did he find this funny?  This flap door thing offers nothing but aesthetic value to the inside of the freezer.  Even though the part might not be necessary for the freezer to function, I hated to have a part missing this early on in my new freezer ownership. 

He sighed (when he was done laughing at what seemed like my expense).  'I'm not sure I can order the screws for the new flap door.'  If that is the case, why was he laughing???!!!  I instinctively glanced at the garbage bin where I had tossed the door after this guy's last visit weeks ago.  Of course the garbage was taken out several times since then. 

I found it hard not to scream.  If I saved everything my kids broke over the years, I would be featured on some hoarding show.  It baffled me.  He took a picture of the broken door on his last visit, but he never instructed me to keep the broken part.  My new kitchen is more spacious, but I have yet to designate a cabinet:  'storage-for-broken-stuff'.  With this crew, I suppose I shouldn't rule a cabinet with that label.

Then it got real infuriating.  'Well, I need to come back anyway.  I need to order another part for the ice maker.'  How could this be?  I cannot for the life of me remember what else he needed to order.  What I do remember is wondering if anyone had ever threatened to shove this guy into one of the freezers that he was fixing. 

The white piece that looks like a wall
and has 'Thermador' printed across
 it is the swing door thing
 that hides the ice maker parts.
It also hides some of my hidden cookies,
which Tank discovered and in his haste -
broke off the door. Beneath it is ICE. 
GLORIOUS ICE!  
Then on Wednesday it happened.  The stars aligned.  My least favorite fix it guy arrived.  Coach came home from work fairly early, so I raced off to Costco because I was starving and in need of groceries.  I slipped away just as the guy started tinkering with the freezer.  I thought it best that I not be in the same building as Mr. You-Threw-Something-Away-And-It-Struck-My-Funny-Bone, because inevitably he would announce that he needed more parts. 

When I got home, I opened the freezer.  A new aesthetic flap door thing hung in place.  So he had no trouble ordering the screws.  Hooray!  Coach told me that he had instructions to empty the ice cubes in the morning.  After that, the ice cubes could be ingested.  I was given these same instructions back when Mr. Joker played a Jedi mind trick on me. 

I was skeptical, but sure enough in the morning . . . ICE.



April 10, 2018

feed me, damn it

Yesterday was one of those days when I just couldn't find enough to eat - or more specifically food that I WANTED to eat.  My workout class was incredibly intense - thus ramping up my appetite.

Tuesdays and Wednesdays I workout crazy early.  At least to me it is crazy early.  Basically any time that interferes with a time that I COULD be sleeping, is crazy early.  Or perhaps I am just plain crazy for working out and forgoing sleep.

The bummer about my 5:45 Wednesday class is that the studio gets very full very quickly.  In order to get a spot on the floor, I aim to get there by 5:35 am. The basketball court where the class gathers on Tuesdays at 6 am is more spacious.

The silver lining when I lost my license for 7 weeks a few years ago is that I discovered these early workout classes.  (A neighbor agreed to drive my sorry ass to workout, but she worked out very early).  Have you not read about all the no-license stuff?  It was one of those things . . . not funny in the moment, but time plus a few blogging posts, and bam - turns out it was pretty comical.  Check it out here, here, here, here, here, and here.  There are layers and lots of stories associated with my temporary loss of driving privileges.

Getting back to my severe hunger mode . . . we did a ladder workout on Wednesday.  The instructor told us to do 25 crunches and 25 push ups and then run a few laps.  She added 5 increments each time and eventually decreased the amount we were doing.  Thus moving down the ladder.  I think we moved back up the ladder too, but everything started to blur.  I mentioned - this was early in the morning, right?  By the time we were done she estimated that we completed 150 push ups.

I am NOT a fan of push ups.  I am also not a fan of instructors that announce 'work at your own pace'.  I am in pretty decent shape, but I was always the last one to finish a set of exercises.  It's not like anyone waited for me to finish, so I was in constant catch-up mode.  Yes, that means that I shaved off a few push ups here and there.  Sue me.

A workout like that is great, except that I can't find enough to fill my pie hole for the rest of the day.  Yeah, yeah - I know protein.  I start there but could easily swallow my kids' entire stash of hostess products.  Total no-no for me.

Since being diagnosed with Celiac disease on a very dark day in May of 2015, I have the occasional situation when I just want to eat something on the 'OFF LIMITS' list.  Yesterday was one of those days.  I will be honest.  It sucked.

I realized late in the day that I hadn't eaten my afternoon apple.  Shoot.  How could I have skipped such a treat?

People, I have early morning gluten free oatmeal loaded with craisins and granola so I can pretend it doesn't taste like baby food.  Then I have scrambled eggs and a grapefruit.  I make a kick ass cob salad for lunch and chase that with a yogurt.  Late afternoon I award myself with an apple.  I was dipping it in peanut butter until that started to show on the scale.  Dinner is usually meat, potatoes, and veggies.
This is now in my freezer. 
I have eaten gluten free pizza before.
 It makes no sense to save the leftovers.
  Leftover gluten free pizza tastes like dirt.

Exciting stuff.  See why I occasionally get desperate for MORE?

Good or bad, while in severe starvation mode I ran to Costco.  They were sampling gluten free pizza.  I generally don't eat gluten free pizza or pasta or anything that isn't gluten free naturally, but I sampled it.  It was tasty and I fell into the Costco trap and bought it.  On Good Friday a few weeks ago, I ate a salad while surrounded by the  awesome aroma of pizza that the rest of the family was stuffing in their faces.  Instant grumpy mommy.



Well bad-mood-from-hating-my-food no more.

Look for this box in
your Costco freezer.
 I don't get any $
 for endorsing this -
 just the satisfaction
that I've introduced
 something yummy
 and healthy to other
gluten free eaters.

Yummy muffin!
I discovered a delicious treat by Garden Lites while loading my cart with $380 worth of groceries.  Banana chocolate chip muffins.  Gluten free.  Amazing and healthy!  They weren't even sampling them at Costco.  I just stumbled on them by my big-girl self.

Eddie is the health food guru in these parts.  He inspected the box and gave me a thumbs up.  He was impressed that one muffin didn't count for like 98% of daily carbs or anything sneaky like that.  I still had the crumbs on my face from inhaling my second muffin in 2 minutes, when I asked for his blessing . . . 'Is it a big deal if I eat like 2 in a day?'  Eddie forbid it.  Damn.
Muffin nutrition label. 
Main ingredient is zucchini.

I mean when you kick yourself for forgetting your apple treat, you know you are just too damn deprived.  Thanks to another blogger (themorethemessier), I have been indulging lately on Senor Rico rice puddings.  Probably not great for my waistline, but it's done wonders for my disposition.

The kids know to keep their mitts off of my stash of generously over-sized 'single' servings of rice pudding.  They cross me and their Hostess supplier will cut them off!
This is a mighty generous portion of rice pudding.
 Not that I'm complaining!