Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Things I like About Summer

I'm trying to turn negative thoughts about heat- black leather interior in the car- and makeup melting off my face into positive I'm focusing on things I like about summer:

  • Favorite fruits are in season...and always available
  • watering my plants after dark and feeling the warm breeze
  • Pushing the jogging stroller and/or taking Tobie for his walk is guaranteed to work up a sweat
  • Swimming with Cole
  • Riesling but now more preferable is Ferrari Fume Blanc
  • Dallas Restaurant Week is Coming Soon.... Right?
  • Crickets...June Bugs...
  • Eating Salads all the time because it's too hot to eat anything else
  • Bathing T-o-g-o in the water hose
  • Ice Cream
Quote of the Day:

"Experience is what you get when you didn't get what you wanted.." Randy Pausch The Last Lecture

I'm not good at not getting what I want. Apparently neither is Cole. I was getting dinner ready tonite... Clearly I wasn't making it happen quick enough for Sir Cole.. He wanted to assume his perch on my kitchen counter while I cooked... and well I just needed to get done so tonite. I didn't let him up... "Mommy" (I've graduated from Ma apparently and just when i was getting use to it) "Mommy.." next we move on to "pleaassee" "peeze"" "Ma pleeaaee" with outstretched hands. Don't get me wrong it's hard to resist it.... but I'm trying to get the mission accomplished here... "Cole we'll eat in just a minute.."

Wrong thing to say... Not acceptable in Cole's world.. and in typical toddler fashion we throw ourselves on the floor in the most violent manner and thunk our head on the kitchen cabinet... I flinch and do the parental "man that had to hurt grimace.." and just when he realized he'd thunked his head and that it hurt he looked at me and that's when you have to wipe the grimace off your face instantly and I just haven't mastered that skill yet...

""AAAHHHHHH" s-o-b s-o-b huge crocodile tears and he is sure his world has ended... I scoop him up..carry him to the couch and just hold him until he's done with shrill sobbing and really this is just about the pride/ego being wounded more than anything... Cole's just learning about embarrassment. Luckily he has me as a mother and well I'm a pro at embarrassing myself and so I say " Can you believe that kitchen cabinet got in your way like that? I mean you had it working with the melodrama. You were going to win an Oscar with that throw down and the cabinet totally messed up the show...." I realize he probably has no clue what I'm saying but it sounds better to him I guess? I'm getting a lot of miles outta this trick these days... and just like that the tears stop, he sniffs and looks at me.... " wanna go finish dinner?" I say .."k" he nods.. "wanna color at the table while I finish?" "k" he nods.. and the crisis is averted....

I'm still playing in the Minor League here... I often watch those Mom naturals also known in my world as the "Professional Mom" and think to myself "she must read every parenting book ever published... " and watch in awe trying to steal her moves... I equate it to reading the cliff notes.

Sorry Cole. You're stuck with me. Cliff note reading...Pro Mom wanna be. But I love you the mostest.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

I fought the Wasp and the Wasp won

Not! Note: Subject line is way more funny if you hum to that oldie "I fought the law and the law won.."or maybe not. I do have a strange sense of humor.

So I'm going on my umpteenth weekend of what I call hibernation. I don't want plans. I don't want to go anywhere or do anything. I just want to be... and so I've been... hibernating. It has it's perks. I'm told (by professionals) that when processing a divorce you have to allow yourself time to grieve and work through the emotions. Otherwise well you'll just be one messed up individual the rest of your life. The choices are so great huh? Process or be messed up the rest of your life? So I'm grieving.. I'm feeling...Not really good at either of these so I'm also getting a lot of crap done.

I'm thinking who ever built the Taj Mahal could have done so very quickly had they just gotten me good and sad and mad. I've tackled more yard work. Ripped out three more hedges this weekend. Pruned the front yard again. Mulch. Finished the landscaping stones. Weeded my front flower beds. Washed all the windows on my house...painted my trim in my my drivers license oil changed..more legal papers filed..bathed T-O-G-O and for the grand finale... I took out a wasp nest looming over my front porch. Thank God I consulted the experts (also known as Herb & Gala) before doing so. I was going to climb up my 12' ladder to spray the wasp killing potion on the nest... but they convinced me that the Can of Wasp killer surely would shoot 27'... and that they didn't want to rush me to the hospital when I'd fallen off the ladder failing my arms after shooting the goo... so I got myself good and pumped up.. I HATE WASPS or anything that stings.... I had my game plan... aim..spray..try not to scream as they got all p-o'd and run. I'd waited until Cole was napping. I was ready... My plan worked- I killed the #$%@ wasps... and I can now get my mail in peace. Doesn't take much to make this girl happy.

Now I'm so sore I can hardly move. During my "She-Ra" weekend I failed to remember sunblock by losing track of time. I got good and pissed off at said hedges and couldn't walk away until I'd won the battle. That's what I get for being stubborn. A good sunburn.. and a few more freckles for my collection. I know better. I buy sunblock by the case load. I embrace my pale-ness. Oh well. Mission accomplished I suppose.

Hibernation isn't all bad. I do have dates with Cole. Friday afternoon after work we go and get fresh fruit at Sprouts.. I take him for Ice Cream. He likes salads so he'll frequent my favorite places to get a good salad with me.. and make "yum" sounds while we eat. We rented Bee Movie...l take him swimming every afternoon. We play a-lot and he pushes his bubble lawn mower or shopping cart while I work in the yard. I watch stupid chick movies during hibernation. When I'm really feeling down? Love Actually always does me good. It makes me laugh. My favorite part is that little boy running thru the airport because he's so IN LOVE at all of 10 years of age that he has to see the love of his life before she goes back to America. Just cracks me up every time.. and the old rocker dude makes me laugh too....

I don't really have to get dressed to hibernate. I can rotate between ratty make up..and really bad hair. No need getting dressed to paint, play, swim and work in the yard right?
Cole and I do venture out for church every Sunday so I suppose I do have to get presentable for that. No worries...I'm not depressed...I'm just processing. This is how I process. I work a lot. If I'm not working in the yard or on my house I'm working on work. I think while I do these things. I pray. I listen to my MP3 player and by doing these crazy chores and by hibernating I'm getting a little stronger along the way... I'm tackling fears and every time I accomplish something stupid around this house it makes me feel a little better about my starting over and soon I'll be ready to re join the world... but for right now there's a "Work in Progress" sign posted outside the Peterson Palace on Sunny Point Ct. and hibernation with Cole and T-O-G-O rocks!!!

I found a really cool T Shirt this weekend too... It says "Ride Out Your Wipe Out.." I wear it proudly during hibernation... kinda fits my frame of mind. OK well I've gotta go figure out how to get some sunburn relief on the ole back... and do my usual reading.. praying.. and I just might watch Love Actually as I drift off to sleep...

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Klepto Cole

In Case you Were wondering..
Two posts in one day. Wow! Actually I usually type something quickly as part of my "center my life" time in the evening and then save it to make sure my end of day brain vomit makes sense..Some of these posts might be a week or so old..just waiting in the draft file and then I go "oh yeah" and post. A method to the madness in case you were wondering.

Wacky Wednesday
Today however was good. Got a little acupuncture on the lunch hour to get my chi centered. Returned some Pez dispensers that Cole had "lifted" from my friends house a couple of weeks ago...

Yes- my boo ba la (aka Ali) took me out to dinner for my birthday not so long ago. Cole was instantly fascinated with her Pez collection. Nemo and Mini Mouse in particular. What does that say about my son? I did ask if it was ok..Ali said "of course!".. and of course Cole carried them out to the car to play with and of course I found them in the car after I'd dropped Ali off and driven home.. Then I had to explain to Cole that they weren't his and that we needed to give them back.. "Mine" with hand outstretched opening and closing is hands..." No Cole these are Ali's and we have to return them.." He hung his head in shame and responded with "k" They've remained hidden until I could get them returned.

So I deemed him Klepto Cole.. for the moment.. and it made for a good email to my friend.

Ali's sister happens to be Dr. M- who is "acupuncture chi delivering extraordinaire.." We arranged for the swap at Dr. M's office during my Acupuncture session... My sessions are always fun. Our conversations range from politics, to cars, to celebrity gossip, to family, and relationships to whatever... I generally joke that she should charge me for a "therapy" session with my acupuncture.

Now with my Chi centered. I must trot off to take a bath as I'm stinky from gym, dog walking, kid playing and bathing and crawl into bed. Do a little reading.. a little praying..and maybe catch up on my TiVo'd stupidness.

Holla! or given my new found Chi. Sit in quiet meditation.

Only Technologically I-m-p-a-i-r-e-d

Success! Finally! The problem was only my DVD player... And after another hour of messing with it..and a new DVD player

POOF!! DVD, DVR and HDTV are all working together wonderfully. If I could only figure out how to get my cable remote to communicate with the TV... volume up & down shouldn't require me to keep up with a 2nd remote?

Monday, June 9, 2008

Technologically Impaired.. aka l-o-s-e-r

So it is with great sadness I make this confession. I'm a technological loser. I can't even hook up this fancy schmancy new TV I bought.

I found a great deal on a decent television. The only TV I had was one that I inherited from my deceased grandmother in 1999 when I graduated from college. I paid $50 and replaced the tube people.... I only recently got a DVR/TiVo and so far it's my most successful relationship. He (TiVo) only lets me down when I have a failure to communicate properly.. Also known as user(loser) error.

Proud of my "deal" on my new 37" LCD VZIO television.. I loaded it up in my VW after removing car seat etc., and unloaded it in my garage...then I was off to pick up Cole and after he was in bed for the evening I was anxious to see if I could set up my new TV. It would be the ultimate step in my liberation. I drug the massive box into the house and commenced the set up. I carefully read the instructions. Inserted proper cables in proper spot and my only hang up was the lack of power strip to plug in TiVo, the TV, and my DVD player. I lost my entertainment Ar moire in recent negotiations and the power strip thingy was already built in. I thought..that's easy enough to fix and after hooking everything up powered on my new TV and "poof" CABLE TV on my LCD.. I'm still getting wise to this HDTV and Digital stuff...Baby steps here folks. I happily trotted off to bed and powered on my "Tube" TV that still resides in my bedroom. Happy with my progress, and confident that when I purchased said power strip the following day all would be right in my TV world. I said goodnight to old faithful - TV Tube and drifted off to sleep thinking it would be awesome to watch a favorite movie on my new LCD thingy tomorrow.

The power strip didn't do crap. I plugged the DVD player in only to find it playing in B&W. Hours of messing with it and my bestest friend Rhonda advised me to "walk away" before I chucked my new LCD TV. Our relationship had only just begun and I hated him!!!

I've consulted with every TV wise dude I know. My brother's friend Luther even came over to mess with it and advised that I needed the "S Video" cable and after I trotted myself to Target to buy that and plugged it in.."Poof" I now have split screen B&W when playing DVD's on my new LCD. I'm convinced that I need a new DVD player. Yes it's old and probably just can't communicate properly with VZIO LCD. I 'm hoping that's the case. So much for my liberation.

Cole's had a fine time with my frustration... "Ma!" Two Sheaks!" (code for Shrek) he said grinning and pointing. I'm surprised he recognized the green Ogre in B&W.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Sex and the City

So I, like most of the female population, planned last weekend around the premiere of Sex & the City - the Movie.

Pre-Marriage me and my single girlfriends planned most every Sunday night around being in front of some one's television for the weekly Sunday episode. Regrettably when we would gather around the water cooler the next day there would always be the ones in the office that would hear us talking and say "How can you watch that? It promotes promiscuity... it's not accurate.." You know.. Those comments. I understand their point of view. I'm not condoning the character's lifestyle. It's just good chick entertainment...

There are questionable scenes. Usually always involving Samantha in the weekly shows. And it's more for shock value then anything else... she's the woman that doesn't want the relationship and we all watched her in aww and thought "Does this person really exist?" She's the contradiction I suppose. Were she male.. she'd be getting high fives, but b/c she's female well she's labeled a slut and she happily embraces the title.

But that wasn't why the show was appealing. It was appealing because it's an honest look at the modern day chick (not necessarily honest about the sexual stuff-for me anyway) It's no longer the black and white world where you grow up, get married, and have babies. Now we have careers. We sometimes make more money then the males in our lives. We may not want children or may want them and not be able to have them because we face reproductive issues because we spent "16 YEARS dating.. where is he?" These women aren't the Superwomen that society tells us we have to be sometimes... They are alone, terrified, and depending on the episode or day, either content in their life or wondering what the heck are they suppose to do next?

I think the show does a good job of teaching women to embrace their fears whether they are those of the biological clock, struggling in their career, spending life alone, or settling. It's witty.. and the characters Carrie, Charlotte, Miranda & Samantha are hopelessly flawed as we all are but at the end of the day.. Well sometimes we just need a little girl power and to look at some fairly fabulous ladies struggling with the day to day and the Big Stuff (as in Mr. Big)... and doing so in some great shoes and clothes.

The movie didn't disappoint. It was witty. Clever. I do admit to having to turn my head a couple of times... (Samantha scene again) but I laughed out loud.. cried.. and afterwards hugged my best friend. That's one thing I think we have over men.... Women need each other. We need those girlfriends and martini's. Life's just too crazy without them.

May Madness

So about a month ago I was sitting in my dr's office. The special doctor that women are required to visit once a year. Mine is Dr. W.

Dr. W-well she rocks. I love her. She delivered Cole. She's practical, rational and well when someone delivers your baby you feel this special bond. Once a year you have to complete new forms and update info. And there it was. Marital status & choices
"single.."divorced"... "separated"... "widowed"..."other" and I didn't know what to check? So I checked "other" & wrote "divorce pending" and typing it on this blog is equally as painful. My Dr offered condolences, a hug, and support... As we commenced with the exam I jokingly said this is probably the most action I'll get for years... and she laughed and encouraged me to keep the crazy sense of humor...

So with that knowledge, confession, & sadness. I blog about the journey that started along time ago I suppose as I dealt with my Faith, Morals, & Values and that those things tell me that divorce is wrong. I struggle with the Sin of it everyday. But the truth of it is.. I've held myself accountable- I did everything I felt I could. I prayed daily and tried to work through things for over two years. Now I have to work my way thru the grieving process and find a way to make it okay for Cole, Tobie & myself.

May has always been a lucky month for me.. Look at the life timeline:
May 17th 1977- Birth
May 1995 High School Graduation
May 1999 College Graduation
May 25 1999 1st day of employment with my Company
May 25, 2000 Met my husband
May 10, 2002 Married

And on May 2, 2008 I filed for divorce. I cried all the way to the courthouse to file the papers and all the way back & shortly thereafter I got angry.. because that's when the negotiations started and when I started I prayed. I prayed that Jesus would take my hand and help me make the right decisions. That it wouldn't turn bitter for me when dealing with the business of divorce. I would take the high road and do the right thing even when insults would be easier. And so far I know I have. I negotiate real estate deals for a living...but I've found it hard to apply those skills to negotiation when it's my child's life and mine.

This journey has humbled me. Refinancing, all the legal paperwork, the horrible phone calls & the craziness it just leads to a world of uncertainty and heartbreak. But everyday I feel His presence. This May was hard. Nothing like turning 31... a week after what would have been your 6 year Anniversary and a Mother's Day as a newly single Mom. Then to get on a plane and have to go work and to leave Cole so soon after his Dad moved out. To open the paper on a Saturday morning to see an article in the Business section that the Company I work for might be a part of a merger...which might mean I could be out of a job..

Once again... Prayer... and He Answered. I had made a commitment to help a friend with a mission trip and I had one last check to write.. I had the money, but with all this uncertainty it's so easy to say " This $ could pay for..." but I had committed. I needed to honor that commitment and as I wrote the check I worried for a moment and I prayed.

The Sermon at Church that Sunday: Philipians 3: 12-14
"....But I focus on one thing: Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead, I press on to reach the end of the race and receive the heavenly price for which God, through Jesus Christ, is calling us.."

The following Tuesday.. I was expressing concern to my colleague about our work situation and merger talks. He said he was going to be calling our client to tell him of the "word on the street.." Within a couple of hours I received a call from my client... "Ashley I don't want you to worry about your job...if your Company is bought then I'll sign a new contract with the portion of the Company that remains and insist that my current team stays in place and that means you..." Later that week I opened my mailbox to find a check from the above OB-GYN. Over payment of my deductible was on the memo line- but I've called to question if it's really the case?

On Wednesday a couple of weeks ago- my soon to be ex came to collect the remainder of his things and on that day..that really hard day.. I cried some more..

The next day I walked in after work and found this blue scrap of paper on the floor. I could have tracked it in..Cole could have..the handy man could have..but on it was the following: ""Guide our feet into the path of peace" Luke 1:79 It was a sticker of some sort- but it's found a home on my cork board and is just a reminder that I'm being taken care of. In every way. He has to shout at me sometimes with timely sermons, calls from the client, checks in the mail and random pieces of paper. But I find myself in awe. Because at this moment when I feel utterly unworthy of His Grace and presence. He reminds me of it almost daily. And I've found a little peace in my moment. I acknowledge that those who love me have continually "picked me up, dusted me off and told me I was okay" (great lyrics from a great song) I am thankful and find myself ready for June. The official beginning of summer and the Texas heat. Because this May... it's been maddening and I'm ready for a new lucky month.