How to Survive Rogue One

My family and I did something a few days ago that we rarely do… we went to the movies! Usually my hubs and I wait until movies are available from the comfort of our own home and have the “lazy man’s movie night”. But we went all out for Rogue One. Given it’s been a bit since we’ve ventured out together like this, I forgot about a few nuances about the movie theater experience. In the event you are weighing the pros and cons of going to see a movie, I’d like to share with you what those nuances are.

  1. Cost – if you’re not in the top 1% of the top 1% of earners in the country, you may want to pawn that vase you had appraised on Antiques Roadshow before you purchase those tickets. And don’t get me started on the food. $4.99 USD for a SMALL BOTTLE OF WATER?????? I can get 32 bottles at Costco for that price! Just keep whispering, “It’s for the babies… it’s for the babies… it’s for the babies.” And hand over that $100 bill. To be fair, in exchange you’ll get a kid’s sized Icee, a small popcorn, and a box of Snowcaps. Did you get nachos? Want extra cheese? Well, that’ll be a kidney. Napkins? Those are free. You’re welcome.
  2. Time Management – Lines are inevitable even if you get your tickets online. Lines, lines everywhere. So be sure to plan for it. Concession lines to order your food and drinks, lines to get your food once you order it, lines to show the 13 year old your tickets, lines to use the bathroom. Lines again so that your 5 year old can use the bathroom for the 6th time in an hour. In my mind I’m famous and, as such, should not be subjected to lines.
  3. People – Ugh. I forget how much I hate being around people until I go to the movies. Remember that movie Crash? The one where Reese Witherspoon’s first husband played a cop? When I saw that movie so many years ago, something happened that caused me to forever lose faith in the classiness of the human race. A woman sat down rightbesideme (yes, that spacing is on purpose because that’s how I felt) in a not-so-crowded theater, reached into her oversized handbag, and pulled out of that Mary Poppins purse a paper bag from Churches Chicken. While the movie was just beginning (the actual movie, not the credits) she tore the bag down the side and rolled it down so that she could gain better access to her chicken wings. Then she- I moved. I have no idea what she did after that. In my mind she made love to those chicken wings without shame, no matter who was watching, and I wasn’t going to be a part of that. But, yeah, I hate being around groups of people. They’re stupid.
  4. My kids – I adore my kids. Seriously. I am in love with them. But I can’t handle going to the movies with them very often. When we order movies at home, they have full access to more than one bathroom. They can move around, they can talk, they can sit on their heads, they can cry because their socks feel funny. None of it matters because I didn’t spend $100 to watch it. I maybe spent $6 if I was feeling frisky and didn’t go with a free option. Today Roman spilled his popcorn, went to the bathroom 4 times, got his foot caught underneath himself and started bawling, sat in my lap, sat in my hubs’ lap, sat in his chair, sat in my lap, back to my husband, then back to me. He wanted my pizza, nope that’s gross, then drank an entire Icee. That’s right. He had to pee 4 times BEFORE he finished the Icee. Then there’s my 8-year-old baby girl. Bella is usually pretty good at the moves. Today, though, she wanted to know who everyone was in the movie, why they did what they did, point out how funny the robot was, impersonate the robot, crunch her chips, smack her chips, argue with me out loud when I told her quietly to stop smacking, and sit with her legs in what I can only describe as an open frog position.

Overall, even with the frustrations, we had a great time. Rogue One is a very entertaining, action-packed movie that the kids and the hubs loved. I love that a strong female character kicked ass. Bam, boys! It moves quickly and stands alone so you don’t have to be familiar with the whole franchise to get the story. So if you can get passed all the crazy out there and afford to sell your first born to whatever theater you prefer to visit, I highly recommend seeing Rogue One.

Maybe I’m impatient and frugal but it’s ok. At least I’m pretty. How do you prefer to watch movies?

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New Year, New Mariah, New You

It’s 2017. If you’re reading this, you made it! Congratulations. It probably means you aren’t a cracked out rock star, beloved screen actor, or Princess Leia. Maybe it means you’re Betty White! GO BETTY!

Anyway, with each new year comes a renewed effort to start anew and begin again… to become a better person and along with that many of us make goals and some lofty resolutions to keep ourselves on track.   Be our best in 2017. I want you to know that those goals, your goals are all within reach. No matter how lofty or big they are, you can make those goals your biatch.

The difference between goal setters and goal reachers is that goal reachers put one foot in front of the other, even when the fog is too thick to see the end. All it takes is that first step, then the next, then the next. Some people are mistaken by thinking that they have to perfect that first step before they take it. New Year’s Eve proved us wrong.

Did you see it? Mariah Carey’s performance? If not, hold EVERYTHING and Google it. Immediately. But be sure to come back. This shat’s about to make you feel a whole lot better about yourself. Even your 2016 self.

It was pretty crazy, right?

If New Year’s Eve with Mariah taught us anything, it’s that you just gotta get out there. Did she know the words? The words to her OWN SONGS? No. No, she did not. Did that stop her from getting out on that stage in front of millions? Nope. Not only that, she was confident. She stuck both of those legs in that sparkly, high-cut leotard and walked out on that stage like the diva she knows she is. And that, as “THEY” say, is the first step.

Was she there to sing? Yes. Did she? No. But she smiled and held that microphone like she was gonna love it. She owned her suckiness and gave us a show that none of us expected. And there we all were left with our mouths agape wondering what just happened to us.

I don’t know what your goals are. Maybe it’s to be more present. Maybe it’s to get in shape. Maybe it’s to pay off your debt so you can fulfill your dream of becoming a Bikram yoga instructor.   If MC taught us anything, it’s that life won’t stop so you can line everything up for perfection before you take that first step. Sometimes you have to get out on that stage unprepared “without a functioning earpiece” and make the best of it. But as long as you sparkle and own it, that stage is yours.  If you fail, put on your highest heels, slap some mascara on those lashes and get back out there.  At least you’re pretty.

So, what will you do? What’s your first step?

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Life’s Bright Side

Sometimes life gets the better of us no matter how hard we try to have it all and keep it all together. I’ve learned to see the bright side of things over the years. That’s really the purpose of this blog: to share the bright side of the sometimes bad side of life. And my bright side is your bright side because we’re all pretty. Here’s a list of my life lessons so far:

  1. Sometimes my son wants to wear my leather pants out of the house because he thinks he’s a rock star. If I don’t let him wear MY pants to dinner out, he tells me I’m mean. And maybe I am. Maybe I’m a horrible parent for that. But at least I’m pretty.
  2. I once got lost in a circle. A circle. Yes, you read that correctly. Sometimes I can’t find my way but that’s ok. Because at least I’m pretty.
  3. I have a very foul mouth and no filter. I would say I try but I don’t. Life’s too short to be someone you’re not. And I’m unfiltered. And pretty. Unfiltered and pretty.
  4. My husband is twice my size. He has muscles for days. On a vacation a few months ago I out ate him in crab legs. And the only reason I stopped is because there was no more to eat. I was still hungry. I don’t know if he was amazed, scared, or disgusted. Maybe all three. Yes, I have weaknesses but at least I’m pretty. For now. Until these crab legs catch up with me and I turn into one.
  5. I oversell things I like. I also oversell myself. I’m hoping it works like The Secret, where I put things out into the universe and they happen? No? Whatever. At least I’m pretty. Well, attractive. Ok, I’m average-looking. Let’s just say I do the best with what I’ve got.
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Comedy Birthday Show with Darren Knight

Two nights ago I took my mom to see Darren Knight (AKA, Southern Momma) for her 21st birthday so she could live my dream of becoming a standup comedian. {Yes, I have a young mom.  We’re from backwoods Mississippi, don’t judge}.
It was just the two of us, which is a treat in and of itself, and the night did NOT disappoint. I even came away with a surprise new girl-crush!

For those of you who don’t know who Darren Knight is, he’s an overnight Facebook comedy sensation who parodies moms from the south and, having a southern momma myself (and being one), I can tell you that his impersonation is spot on. It was an evening full of me elbowing my mom to say, “OH EM GEE, VICKI! It’s like he’s my long lost brother or somethin’!”

If you weren’t raised by a southern mom, you may not realize how “moming” in the south follows a pattern. One I know I’ve picked up along the way.

For example, if you need to talk to your kids, you yell out what you’re gonna say. Sure, you can speak in a normal tone but your kids will ignore you. Then it’ll take a five minute dance of:

Me: Bella, could you please pick your book up off the floor so Georgia doesn’t eat it?

Bella:

Me: BELLA! Did you hear me?

Bella:

Me: CANDY!

Bella: HUH?

Me: OH, SO YOU DO HEAR ME?! I KNOW YOU HEARD ME TELL YOU TO PICK YOUR STUFF UP OFF THE FLOOR! WHY DO I ALWAYS HAVE TO YELL?! DO YOU LIKE IT WHEN I’M CRAZY? NO! NO ONE LIKES ME WHEN I’M CRAZY BUT Y’ALL DON’T LISTEN TO ME WHEN I SPEAK LIKE A NORMAL PERSON! DON’T MAKE ME TELL YOU AGAIN!

Bella: Gosh, mom, you don’t have to yell.

So, instead, and to save us all the pain of living through what you just read, I yell, “BELLA! PICK YOUR SHAT UP OFF THE FLOOR RIGHT NOW OR I TURN OFF THE TV AND THROW AWAY THE REMOTE!” And she picks up her stuff.

Another example:

Clothes. My kids go through clothes like their little bodies are covered in sandpaper. And they love to wear their BEST clothes to play in. Cuz they’re purdy. But then when it’s time for church or a wedding or Thanksgiving dinner or bailin’ Uncle Mikey outta jail for that meth lab again, all their best clothes have holes in them and stains on them and prolly missing a sleeve. So to preemptively solve the problem, I make them take off their “church clothes” as soon as they come in the door. “Putchur play clothes own!” I yell as their sweet little booties walk in the house. Now, of course I have to fish the nice clothes out of the hamper and now they’re all wadded up and wrinkled, but at least I know they aren’t shredded by the rambunctious little honey badgers I call my children.

Darren Knight has observantly captured all of this. And those of us who survived sourthern mommas and those of us who are now southern mommas can all relate beautifully.

The best part of having a southern momma is that she’s always gotchur back. When you’re the child of a southern momma you know that if you’re wronged by someone (even your daddy), your momma will “take care” of the situation, much like Tony Soprano “took care” of his business. Alternatively, if you ain’t actin’ right with the Lord, you know your momma will also “take care” of the situation. Be right with the Lord. That’s all we’re askin’. Mainly that part that says, “Honor thy mother”, AKA do what we say and don’t ask questions.

His standup is different than the videos. If you’re expecting him to stand up on stage and perform an hour of Southern Momma skits, you’ll be disappointed. But if you go in with the expectation of a true stand-up routine, you’ll get lots of laughs.

There were 3 comedians that opened for him. The first one was Gary Cargal. I didn’t really relate to his material but he got a lot of laughs from the crowd. He’s a regular on the Atlanta comedy scene which is great to see. 

The second comedian was a woman who goes by the stage name “Red Squirrel”. Y’all, she’s HILAROUS. I may have laughed more with her than with Darren. She’s little, she’s spunky, and she is crude without you realizing it! She’s my new girl-crush for sure. If you have time to internet stalk anyone today, I highly recommend you waste your time on this chick. The third comedian was Rocky Dale Davis. He’s a young comedian and he’s pretty funny, too. He’s starting to gain traction as a performer so I’d say go see him now.

After the show there was a meet and greet with all of the comedians. Now, y’all need to understand something about my mom. She has this habit of making a bee-line for the door when an event is over. Vicki don’t play. And she walks SUPER FAST. I’m 5’2”. I couldn’t walk fast if I were escaping zombies and into the arms of chocolate wine. So I’m always behind her. She was already out the door and I notice someone smiling at me out of the corner of my eye. Y’ALL, IT WAS RED SQUIRREL!!!!! I geek out, because I’m me, and like a giddy school girl yell out, “OH MY GOD YOU’RE SO FUNNY!” Then I realize I’m being loud and stupid and bring it down a notch to ask, “Can I please get a picture with you?” She was SO nice! So that made my night. As you can see, I was so excited that my hands were shaking. See??

red-squirrelThe selfie will forever commemorate that. #yay. Do y’all geek out over meeting anyone, or is it just me?

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Christmas Card Chaos

Each year, I send a cute Christmas card to all 10,000 of my closest friends and family members.

{Yes, I exaggerate.  Maybe I get confused because I spend $10,000 on stamps.}

The first year we sent cards we didn’t have a ton of time or money to find a photographer so our card was a hodgepodge of candid pictures through the year.  Christmas Card 2011

Super cute, inexpensive, got the job done.

Then the hubs we raised the bar.

My hubs is a classic overachiever.  Bachelor’s degree + TWO Master’s degrees = super-smart.  He didn’t get to where he is now by being average.

And I love that he pushes me to rise to his level of over-achievement.  I appreciate this about him very much.

HOWEVER, the reason it takes him pushing is because I know that once that pesky little bar has been raised, it’s hard to shove it back down.  Believe me, I’ve tried.  A lot.

{“Wow, E.  You birthed a 9 lb. baby boy with a head the size of a bowling ball for my birthday!  That’s the best present ever!”  Dam.}

“Hey, E, we need to have family pictures taken.  Like the nice ones we see all over Facebook.  Not the ones that we take ourselves.”

{He has a point.  But I must tread lightly.  One misstep and by the time the kids are in high school I’ll end up with no place to go but the Kardashian Kristmas card.}

Kardashian Kristmas
nicksaglimbeni.com

 

Yes, we should send all of our enemies friends a 3-D Christmas card!  Should we include the glasses???  No, I’m sure everyone has the 3-D app on their iPhone 10.

Surprisingly, I am a perfectionist.  I want everything I touch, ESPECIALLY our Christmas card, to be perfect.  A beautiful representation of my sweet little family on our best day.

BUT, I realized early on that I didn’t want to die of a heart attack by age 15.

Because I know I can’t control everything and everyone, I step back.

I have to “Let it Go” in order to get anything done.  Otherwise, I’d work on my hair for 3 hours, spend 3 hours ironing my pants, another 8 hours scrubbing baseboards with a toothbrush, 10 hours organizing bills and stuff, 5 hours folding laundry perfectly… you get the idea.

So, when I take a picture of my family at home there may be a pile of crap in the background:

Crap in background

In my defense, we were renovating… that’s why the bed’s not made.

My clothes sometimes look like this:

Wrinkles

All the wrinkles will keep each other company!

My hair sometimes looks like this:

Gross Haire

Just. Gross.

I’ve learned to let things go for the sake of sanity.  Once I learned how it was like a thousand butterflies lifted the dumb bells off my shoulders and angels embraced me.  Aaaaahhhh.  For my tightly-wound friends I highly recommend trying it.

{Luckily, I don’t live in a town that will put me on the prayer list if someone “calls” on me and my bed isn’t made.  I’m just on the prayer list because I have the mouth of a convict sailor, drink alcohol on occasion, and have tattoos.}

Now, back to Christmas cards (You were wondering, weren’t you?)

{Ladies and Gentlemen, thank you for riding Tangent Airways.}

The second year we sent out Christmas cards we used a picture from our first family experience with a professional photographer.  Shameless plug, if you’re in Atlanta, Claire Elise is amazing.

Christmas Card 2012

Bar.  Officially.  Raised.

The third year we used the same photographer (she really is awesome).  This time we were dressed up a little more, all color-coordinated, on location at Piedmont Park.  Our card was breathtaking.  Especially when I MISSPELLED OUR LAST NAME.  Ooops.  Ma bad.  (I snipped the name part out of the card for the post so it’s like it didn’t really happen.  I’m still perfect.)

Christmas Card 201

What I love about this picture is that no one would have any idea that Bella decided it was hilarious to honk my boobs during much of the shoot.

{Bar raised, then lowered by half on account of the spelling mishap.}

So began our descent.

I knew this year the pressure was on.  All I had to do was nail spelling our last name correctly.  I got this.

I made the appointment with Claire in October, carefully taking into account my hubs’ call schedule, kids’ activity calendar, and any miscellaneous events I’ve over-committed to.

Every detail was planned.  Claire was going to meet us at the square and we were going to be all dolled up in our best holiday attire.  Heck, I was feeling so sassy that the cray-cray dogs were even going to be included!

I felt very prepared and accomplished… and then it rained.

Part of me was relieved.

The hubs wanted the opportunity to buy clothes specifically for the occasion and he hadn’t had the chance.  Maybe this would give him the window of time he needed to find the perfect Christmas outfit.

{Isn’t finding the perfect Christmas outfit top of mind for every man???}

Reno 911!
youtube.d3.ru

 

Hi Officers!  Just on my way to have my Christmas pictures taken.  No big deal.(Really I just wanted to reference “Reno 911!”)

 Plus, I found a corduroy blazer for Roman but the store was out of his size at the time I needed it for pictures.  Maybe now I had the chance to put my little guy in an old guy blazer!

{I love to see little boys dressed up like old men.  It’s like watching a Hallmark commercial.}

I also needed a “perfect” bow for Bella’s hair.

AND, I was looking a little pasty.  SPRAY TAN TIME!!!

Only none of those things ended up happening.

Instead of investing in the perfect family Christmas pictures we had to have our hardwood floors replaced because our furnace leaked.

We lived in a hotel for a week while our floors were being fixed.  Sooooo, that chunk of time was out of the question.

And then the kids started karate twice a week which narrowed our opportunities for free time even more.

But, around the middle of November I thought, “No big deal!  Our first Christmas card was totally adorable {“totes adorb” for those under age 25}.  We can revive the candid pic card!”

MM-MM.  Nope.  Not so cute.

We rarely get the chance to take a family picture.

When we do, chances are one of us has a wonky eye or a runny nose, someone {Roman} is crying, a random dog is pooping in the background, or I decide, “Today is the day I choose to not wash my hair.  I’m not doing anything important today.”

Joke’s on you, E.

Today is the day you will take a memorable, candid picture with your family during an impromptu ice skating adventure.  Today is the day everyone is adorably cute and perfectly poised.

And your hair will shine like the Star of David.  Your friends will ask why they just purchased cooking grease from the store when they could have harvested it from your head.

Also, today is the day your face decides to retain all the water you’ve been drinking for the past year.

Ugh.

I’ll take one for the team.

However, as the days ticked by, I thought, “Maybe I don’t have to use the swollen-face-dirty-hair picture.  I’ll dress the kids up in their cute Christmas pj’s and get a beautiful picture of them by the tree!  Who needs a pro??  I GOT THIS.”

Nope.  I attract jokes like a magnet.

I dressed the kids up and positioned them in front of the perfectly lit tree.  I got out my professional DLS Nokia phone.  AAAAAAAAAND our new black lab puppy who weighs 1,000 pounds photo bombs our picture.

What the face, Georgia!  MOOOOOOVE!

Bella, who is terrified of Georgia when she acts like a puppy (which is all the time), freaked out and just about pooped her pants.

Move Georgia

{The look on her face says enough.}

Roman decided it was time to tackle Georgia because all he’s ever wanted to be is a Football Player Boy.

Lola, our Chihuahua, was laid up on the couch with her eye hanging out.

{Different story for a different time.}

Sometimes in life (especially where kids are involved) you just have to say “at least we’re pretty”.  Or “shudda called Claire”.  But then I wouldn’t have this horribly transparent blog post.

So, without further ado, I present our 2014 “Swollen Face-Dirty Hair-Black Lab Bombed-Oops I Crapped My Pants” Christmas card:Christmas Card 2014

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Here’s Proof that We’re All Beautiful

“You can be the ripest, juiciest peach in the world, and there’s still going to be somebody who hates peaches.” –Dita Von Teese

I’m convinced God made beauty subjective so that every woman has the capacity to feel beautiful; for everyone who doesn’t think I’m beautiful there is someone out there who does. God did that to make up for all the shat we have to deal with (ammarite, ladies???).

It doesn’t matter if you are single with no kids, single with ten kids, married with no kids, or Michelle Dugger. Sometimes women get shat on.

{Yes, I’m sure men do, too. But I’m not a man so I can only speak for my kind. If you are a man and want to talk about it, start your own blog.}

Por ejemplo (See! I AM fluent in Spanish!):

I usually wake up at 5:30 am (ACTUALLY… I hit the snooze a time or two or three so it’s more like 6 am by the time I roll out of bed. Seriously, I ROOOOLL out of bed. Not a morning person). Anyway, by 7:30 am I’ve been an alarm clock for two kids, a stylist for 2 little rock stars, I’ve been verbally accosted several times by both a three and six year old (in true rock star form), I’ve been a cook,

{GAH! Stop looking at me that way! Ok, ok, you got me. I don’t “cook” breakfast. I’ve been a pop tart warmer (that’s what she said)… FINE! I take the pop tarts out of the bag and plop them directly on the table. Not even on a napkin… HAPPY NOW???}

I’ve been a (I don’t know what you call someone who feeds dogs), a chauffeur, and I usually get to work around 7:45. At this point, I sit in my car and put on my makeup (yes, that’s me), wipe dog slobber and sticky hand prints from my suit (I’ve stopped trying to guess what the sticky is from… I think it’s best I not know), and try to pull it together enough to look like I know what I’m doing for approximately 9 hours.

{Mostly, it’s 9 hours of listening to employees bitch about not getting a raise or wonder why their $50k bonus check wasn’t $60k. #firstworldproblems}.

Then, I pick up my two little love nuggets, endure more verbal abuse as they scream at me from the back seat of the car (AND maybe Roman throws a shoe) after I’ve informed them that I’m cooking dinner and not taking them to Chick-Fil-A for the third night in a row, and try to contain the chaos as much as I can until my hubs gets home so he can stand in the kitchen and wonder why the refrigerator door is open, a chandelier is falling down, and the back of our house is missing.

All of this to say that no matter what shat gets thrown at me, I know that at the end of the day I can shower it off, stand in my closet wearing my skivvies after everyone is in bed and in certain light the cellulite and wrinkles go away and I KIIIIIIIIND OF resemble Nina Dobrev. That’s when I feel beautiful: standing in my closet by myself in front of the mirror with one tiny light on pretending I’m on the CW hit show Vampire Diaries. Stop laughing. The circumstances don’t matter. I can say I feel beautiful. That’s what counts (for the purposes of this post, anyway).

Slight Tangent Alert: ever sat on your couch on a Saturday night after a break up and wonder how the Mama Junes and Snookies of the world find love and you haven’t? (Yeah, no, I’ve never done that either… I was just checking to, um… Never mind.)

STOP IT. Seriously, no one likes a whiner.

{Just kidding. I’m no good at the tough love thing. I will ALWAYS lie to you and tell you what you want to hear (that’s what he said). I love you. Please don’t leave me.}

We should ALWAYS feel pretty knowing that there will ALWAYS be someone more unfortunately proportioned, less attractive, meaner, dumber, more annoying, and with more sticky hand prints on their suit. So put a smile on your pretty face and go conquer the world. I’m gonna start with Roswell… or at least my house.

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