Never Say Never

Sounds like a James Bond movie, doesn’t it? Brilliant.

Almost every time I’ve declared, “NEVER!” I think God has smiled a little inside, grabbed some popcorn, and settled in to watch the critically acclaimed miniseries, “NEVER! Well… maybe… Ok, FINE!” starring ME.

First up, we have babies. Nope. I’m not gonna have any. Too much responsibility! Plus, I don’t know what to do with a BAY-BEE!

So God gave me this one:

silly bella

Then he gave me this one:

FullSizeRender

Turns out, I’m the BEST MOMMY EVER! My kiddies both said so… soooo that means it’s true.

Ewe. I’ll never shop at a “MOM” store. Blah. Oh! Look at that cute dress at New York and Company! Hey! Look at the new shirt I got at CATO! I’m so stylish. Funny, God. Vurry funny.

Um, no, I don’t do oysters. That I still won’t do. Yuck, those nasty loogie-textured things…

Mini-van? Nope. I’ve held out by getting a Yukon instead. Aka, the mini-van for moms who refuse to get a mini-van. Does that count?

Oh, to drink? “I’ll just have water with lemon” I’ll never say! Who orders “WATER”??? I’d never order gross water! Well, now I do. Judge away, younger me!

Next up, we have divorce.

Awe, bless her heart. She’s divorced… that’ll never happen to me. I’m going to read all the articles and pray really hard and nope, no d-i-v-o-r-c-e for me!

Turns out, if you marry the first guy I married you’ll end up divorced. Just ask his newest ex-wife.

Which brings me to my next “NEVER! Becomes FINE!” moment. When my ex-whatever-he-was and I divorced, it was mainly because he “fell in love” with someone else. While I was pregnant. And my dad had a stroke that left him permanently disabled. And my dog died on my birthday. And I was 3,000 miles away from home. Cue anything by Willie Nelson.

At first I didn’t blame the “other woman”. But… then I realized she knew about all of it. She knew he was married. She knew I was pregnant. Needless to say, I wasn’t her biggest fan. I would NEVER forgive her for her part. Ever. I didn’t want to speak to her, I didn’t want her to be near my baby, I didn’t care to ever hear her name (which, unfortunately for me at the time, is a very popular name).

Fast forward 6 years, they are married with one baby and one on the way. Then he takes me to court so that he can exercise his visitation in Seattle. Awe, that’s cute, right?? A military guy who just wants to see his daughter. UH-UH. He talked to my daughter maaaaybe once a month on the phone and miiiiight see her once every 18 months. I was desperate. And I was convinced that there was something motivating this and it wasn’t “fatherly love”.

One lovely day, a dear, dear friend divulged some interesting information: there might be trouble in paradise and she might HATE him.

Ugh. What do I do? She might be the only person who can help make sure he can’t take my baby… I prayed… and thought about it… and crossed my fingers… and reached out to her.

Let’s just say she was more than willing to help me. My bet paid off. It was risky. She could have double-crossed me. It could have backfired. Are we best friends? No. But before I picked up the phone I’d already forgiven her for whatever part she had. FYI, if it weren’t her it would have been someone else (Seriously. I can rattle off ten names right now).

After the divorce that left me bitter, angry, and hollow do you think I swore off marriage??? YOU BET I DID!!!!!!! Am I now married to my best friend? You bet I am. God, that’s some sense of humor you have! But if this guy is the punch line, I’ll be the joke 😉

I’ll never be one of those weirdos that eats organic. Such a load of crap. I’ll never like spinach. I’m not a runner… I’ll never run a 5k. I’ll never wear mom jeans (in my defense, I didn’t realize they were mom jeans until I got home from the store. It was quite unfortunate). I’ll never clean! (I said that one just the other day. Then I thought a friend was coming over and I was embarrassed that she might see my house in that state.) All things I’ve said and all things that have turned out happening…

So just for shats and giggles:

I’ll NEVER be rich! I’ll NEVER have a huge beach house! Heh… 🙂

Please like & share:

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

Please like & share:

Why I Love Kids

I LOVE kids.  One of my favorite things about kids is all the comedic material they provide.  I wasn’t really expecting that when I had my first child.  She was really my first experience with babies.  My sister was born when I was four, so I didn’t remember all the baby stuff and I only had one friend who had already started a family when I found out I was pregnant and she lived out of state.  I had NO idea what to do with a baby.

The one thing I expected (from reading the thousands of books) was to hold this fragile little being like she was a brand new Balenciaga handbag.

{You know, the $1 million, platinum-dipped bag that you don’t want to breathe on, much less throw a wallet in}

HOWEVER, as soon as the doctor handed me a tiny, 6 pound baby girl she lifted her head and flared her nostrils.  And I SWEAR she was looking right at me.  That’s when I knew I had to re-evaluate all the books I’d spent the past 9 months reading.

Neither of my children had that floppy-head thing that most newborns have.  And sometimes when they looked at me it was like they had the wisdom of Confucius with the body of Stewie Griffin {who my son channels every night with, “Mom, mommy, momma, mom, mom, mom, mooooom}.

My daughter did everything early.  She was crawling at 5 months, walking well by 10 months.  Naps???  What are those?  I’ve been in a constant state of exhaustion for almost 7 years.

My son came out the size of a linebacker.  His favorite thing to do as a baby was use his head as a weapon against my nose.  {What did my nose ever do to you???}  And he’ll take a nap if you drive him around in the car.  Still not helpful in allowing me time to sleep as well.

My daughter is a ball of spirited energy.  She’s impulsive and dramatic and independent and a born leader.

My son is a sensitive bulldozer.  He is a tank, full-throttle, and physical but let his sister call him a name and he cries for two hours.

Both of my kids are hilarious.  I’m not just saying that because they are my kids and I value hilarity.  They are truly funny.

My daughter, Bella, has zero filter.  Whatever pops into her head comes out of her mouth.  (I hold my breath a LOT).  She also loves performing.  She’s been known to belt out “Let It Go” in the middle of Target for an impromptu concert.

What makes those qualities of hers exponentially awesome is that she frequently mispronounces words and butchers song lyrics.

Simple math (none of that Common Core crap)

Bella + (no impulse control * butchered song lyrics) = Erica (that’s me) pees her pants and almost dies from asphyxiation due to hysterically laughing

Case in point

My top 5 favorite Bella-isms:

  1. Athter = After
  2. Bownero = Bow and arrow
  3. Naybe = Maybe
  4. Billy Wonka = Willy Wonka
  5. Happy Gilmert = Happy Gilmore
  6. BONUS = Any word starting with “HU” is pronounced as a “Q”. Qu-man = Human, Qu-ge = Huge

 

{Imagine hearing this monologue: Roman, did you know that Billy Wonka made that candy you’re eating?  It’s true!  Mom, did you see that quge queman on Happy Gilmert?  It looks like he naybe has a bownero through his head athter that one part!}

My top 5 Bella-ized song lyrics:

  1. Let it go, let it go, turn around and sit on the floor (from “Let it Go”)
  2. Baby I’m playin’ on you ta-nigh, hunt you down, eat you aligh (from “Animals”)
  3. Feliz la ti da (so sings the daughter of a Spanish major… from “Feliz Navidad”)
  4. And abba ubba bo try to save me, but here’s my numba, so call me naybe (from “Call Me Maybe”)

{Me: Hey, Bella, what do you think “abba ubba bo” means?  Bella: Duh, Mom, it’s for the song.  Me: oh, ok that makes sense.}

  1. All the singalets, all the singalets, all the singalets, all the singalets (from “All the Single Ladies”, obviously.)

My son, Roman, is incredibly head strong.  He hates to be told “no”.  He also likes to take on other personas.  For example, Roman has been known to practice his WWE wrestling moves (declaring himself a “wrestler boy”) on his sister in Target (I feel really bad for others who happen to be in Target when we arrive).

The qualities that mesmerize me most about my Roman are his ability to effectively trash talk at the age of 3 and the expert way he keeps everyone guessing (who is he going to be today???).

I submit as evidence

My 5 favorite cut-downs delivered by Roman:

  1. Mommy, you talk funny and I’m a clown.

{This is possibly the equivalent of calling someone a “mommy fudger” in his world.  If you mock the way he says a word, he falls apart for days.  And he thinks clowns are scary vampires that will strike fear in the Devil himself.}

  1. Mommy, I don’t care if you put me in my cwib. I gonna climb out.  Then I gonna open tha door and spank you.
  2. Bella, I gonna take you in jail.
  3. Me: Roman, I need you to pick up your toys, please.

Roman: No, I need you to do it.

{Redirecting.  I see what you’ve done there.}

  1. Bella, I gonna fart on you.
  2. Me: Roman, please pick up your towel

Roman: Roman, please pick up your towel
Me: Roman, Mommy isn’t joking.  Pick it up.
Roman: Roman, Mommy isn’t joking. Pick it up.
Me: Roman, let’s go talk to Daddy
Roman: No!  I not!  Mommy, I NOT YOU’RE BOYFRIEND.

{Ouch, baby.  Very ouch.}

My 5 favorite alter egos of Roman:

  1. Capit Amewica
  2. Leaf-blower boy (He even has the sound effect down)
  3. Slash
  4. Batmanrobin boy
  5. Adam Levine

I love kids.  When given enough rein to express themselves they are more incredible than incredible and more wonderful than wonderful.  Plus, they provide infinite material for my blog 🙂

(once I stop laughing long enough to get to my computer)

 

Please like & share:

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.

Please like & share:

Wrote a Blog About It… Like Ta Hear It? Here it goes…

I kinda thought my life was “normal”.  Everyone has highs and lows, right?  It was only fairly recently I started noticing that people seem to react with nervous laughter, shock, awe, horror, or a “bless your heart” look when I’d join in on the water cooler talk.  The bad reactions made me pause.

{Doesn’t everyone have a crazy Green Beret ex-husband who tried to start another family while still married to their pregnant wife? NO????? Wait a minute…}

So, naturally, I did what every “normal” person does when they suspect something in their life is amiss; I drank heavily and went on a crime spree.  Just kidding.  (or am i???)   The things that I’ve gone through and the lessons I’ve learned have to be for something.So here I am, vowing to share with you the good, bad, and fugly. (It’s really a thing. Google it).

Full disclosure, I’m not a “trained” writer. (I know this comes as a shock cuz I’m so good at rhyming).  Growing up I wanted to be an actress.  More precisely, I wanted to be on Saturday Night Live so bad I could taste it.  For a minute it was a tossup between In Living Color and SNL.  But I settled on SNL because it was more established.  (See! A LOT of thought went into this).  And I had a plan to fulfill my destiny.  I would be discovered in a mall or bar a la Ashton Kutcher and magically appear on camera to tons of adoring fans because I was so incredibly awesome that everyone would automatically love me.  SNL would beg ME to join THEM.  From SNL I’d transition to Oscar-worthy films along the same line as Superstar, Happy Gilmore, and anything by Monte Python.

Making people laugh is all I’ve ever wanted to do.

But, being that I’m a member of the co-dependent club (recently discovered… more on that later), I gave in to “reason” and went to college (UGA, GO DAWGS!) to study Romance Languages (B.T.Dubs, not as sexy as it sounds).  I took film and acting classes as electives to satiate my desire to perform and put the dream of famed comedienne aside as outside pressure to conform to the norms of society mounted my hopes and dreams like a dog in heat.  Born of the fugly (heh) union was a string of life choices that were questionable at best.

Don’t get me wrong; I’ve had some amazing experiences. I graduated from a great party school college, went to parties joined a sorority while I was there, worked as a nanny in Italy for a second (well, hello, hot Italian lifeguard), had a promising career as a babysitter flight attendant for a minute, I coach cute little 5-year-old cheerleaders (I really can’t believe people trust me with their kids… maybe this blog is a bad idea), and have met some wonderful people along the way.

As roundabout as my journey has been, it brought me to my current situation, which is pretty dreamy. I have a hunky husband who sticks with me through the great and horrible (thanks, babe), two of the best kids in the history of kids (the cause of the permanent “II” between my eyes), and awesome friends who keep me grounded. (No, that’s not true. They feed my dirty, twisted sense of humor).

As it turns out, my career path has been a good, stable one. I’ve worked my way up the corporate ladder and my husband and I both have been able to provide well for our family. BUT, I still find myself unsatisfied (that’s what she said).

{Apparently, the white collar types look down on spontaneous comedy routines in annual incentive meetings… stuck up jerks.}

So, to simultaneously feed my hunger for comedy and spread some gul powa (Spice Girls), here is my blog.   In an effort to begin our relationship on the right foot, I have a few promises to make to you:

  1. I promise to try to not be vulgar or inappropriate (I will TRY)
  2. I promise to add a new post a least once a week (Pretty doable. That’s what she said)
  3. I promise to only publish posts that make sense and I promise to do a better job of editing out my stream-of-consciousness dialogue. (For me this is going to be hard because sometimes I get sidetracked on a slight tangent and then the next thing I know I’m on People.com and then- OH! I just read that Billy Gilman revealed he’s gay. Not sure who that is but good for him. I bet if I read the article I’d know who he is… BRB)
  4. I promise to try to not use “That’s what she said” jokes. LOL! I can’t. That’s a lie. When I see an opportunity to use that line it’s like the universe is daring me. And I can’t turn down a dare.

Out of the 4 promises above (which really are only 3, I think, because #4 could count toward #1) I’ll probably only stick to #2. Just being honest.

There will be laughs (I hope), there will be some awkward moments (I’m sure), some unexpected twists (no doubt), but I’ll lay it all out here.   (There will also be comma splices and misused words. This is your warning). And maybe, juuuust maybe, I can help someone out there live a little easier by avoiding some of the poo piles I’ve found myself in the middle of or, if you’ve already found them, know you aren’t alone and maybe have a laugh. Besides, and this is important, no matter how stinky life gets… AT LEAST WE’RE PRETTY!

Please like & share: