The days when there's not much to add

The joy of doing these challenges to post daily for a month is that it gets me back into the groove, I remember to write for myself and not just for my work blogs, and it give people more reading material.

Of course, the downside of doing these challenges to post daily for a month is that sometimes I find myself sitting here looking at a blank post screen and a flashing cursor wondering what the hell I’m going to write about.

Sometimes there’s just not really anything of importance to tell people. It’s not that my life is boring per se (though at times it can feel that way to me), but it doesn’t often step out of the ordinary. If, however, you’d like to know why I said no to having Hayley get the H1N1 vaccination through the school, you can go read the post I put up on Canada Moms Blog about it.

And that is pretty much that.

Monday, Monday

Last night I watched the American Music Awards for the sole purpose of seeing Adam Lambert’s live performance. I was so let down. There’s been a lot of backlash about how explicit and “lewd” it was between the bondage dancers, the S&M implications (uhh, that’s no surprise, haven’t any of those people complaining heard the lyrics?), and the simulated guy-on-guy oral sex. I didn’t care much about that, it takes some serious effort to actually shock me. I did think that maybe the AMAs weren’t the place for it, it would have been better suited to a concert instead of prime time television, but eh.

What disappointed me was that he was so busy running around for the performance, playing the part, that his vocals fell by the wayside, and the fact that the sound mix sucked all night didn’t help him either. Anyone who never watched American Idol and was just hearing him perform for the first time would probably think that he can’t sing and that’s just not true. Adam’s a very talented singer and a stellar performer but neither of those were showcased last night. I hope his next live performance is better!

I have to say though, I got his album today and I’m loving it so far so there’s that!

*******

I knew that Monday would be in full form when I accidentally slept through three cycles of my alarm. It’s set for 6:15, I hit snooze and it goes off again at 6:24, then at 6:33. That last time I resign myself to getting up and starting the day (having a morning routine is rough when you’re a night owl!).

Today I didn’t really hear the first alarm go off. Part of me did since I reached over and smacked the snooze button but I was still in dreamland so it didn’t really register. When I heard it go off the second and third time I was off by one count so I went back to sleep before realizing I was supposed to be downstairs with the dog by then. Oops.

Luckily Hayley managed to get moving pretty quickly – something she’s not great at either on a Monday. We hurried along and she managed to be on time for school so there’s that at least.

George sent me back to bed for a bit since he knew I was really tired and that helped a bit too. The rest of the day went off relatively well so at least Monday only taunted me with that one mishap. I’ve had far worse Mondays than that.

*******

There was one very good thing about this particular Monday. I landed myself another writing job and will now be posting several times a week over at PhotoBlog. I only have one post up so far, but I’m very excited. I’m also looking forward to a very awesome-looking site redesign over there as well. I’m very thankful to Laura (are you still going by “Laura”? Have you come “out” with your real name yet? Hmm, nope, okay I’ll keep hush-hush then!) who suggested me to the editor when he mentioned he was looking for someone to take it over and start writing regularly.

Please go ahead and take a look at my first post, I’m always inexplicably nervous when I post somewhere new so if you’d be inclined to leave a comment or something, I’d be grateful!

What’s that? Eh? Oh, sorry. My tea and cake are calling to me and it would be rude to ignore them!

Some creativity break-throughs

Despite the fact that I just wrote this morning about how I’m suffering from a bit of creative block, luckily I have managed to get some writing out there anyway.

Over at Canada Moms Blog I wrote this post explaining about how the lack of volunteers has postponed Hayley’s school from opening its much-needed Breakfast Club – and how I’m pitching in by offering to set my alarm a bit earlier so that I can go help them out to keep feeding the hungry kids in our community.

In some very exciting news, I also have a post up at Digital Photography School which you can read here. In it I explain some tips you can use to take self-portraits that go beyond the often-seen method of holding your camera in front of your face and pressing the shutter. I read DPS religiously so it’s a huge deal to me to have an article posted over there!

I am thrilled to have two things posted to two great blogs all on the same day!

A lack of sleep makes me ramble

My favorite

Breanna is either going through a growth spurt or she’s turned into a tiny teenage boy. It’s unbelievable how much food she can eat in one day. Right now it’s 10:45 am and she’s been up since 6:30. She actually only started eating at about 7:30 though, so we’re talking about just over three hours of time, and this is what she has eaten so far:

- A bowl of Raisin Bran cereal (except she takes the raisins out. I have a three year old who would be thrilled with a box of Bran Flakes.)
- A bowl of strawberries
- A strawberry yogurt
- An apple
- A piece of bread with peanut butter
- A slice of cheese

That all also includes milk in her cereal and a juice box.

I’m going to need another job just to cover the amount of food she eats on a daily basis, although maybe this will push her over the weight limit and we can start using a booster seat in the car soon!

*******

Flutter

Speaking of jobs, I just started a new blogging job. It’s part of b5 media, where I already write for three other blogs, but this one is a member of the beauty & style network. (Let me pause for a second while I struggle not to laugh over the idea of ME working for a beauty & style network.)

It’s still keeping me in touch with my niche roots – celebrities – but it allows me to branch out a bit. The site is called Celeb Look and basically I detail what various celebrities were wearing while they were out and about, then I link readers to places online where they can buy the same outfit or similar knock-offs.

I only started yesterday but I’m already enjoying it. It just never fails to strike me as hilarious that I work on fashion sites (I write for this one too) and most of the time that I’m writing I’m often wearing such fabulous outfits as pajamas, track pants, or jeans. I almost feel like a fraud, but I figure it’s just my way of living vicariously through people who make enough money to afford to wear Calvin Klein and Versace.

*******

Thistle and friend

This coming Friday I get to go to Hayley’s school for a Volunteer Appreciate Tea in the afternoon. I went to one last year as well and it was a lot of fun – it was very British-style with fancy china cups, a variety of teas, some coffee, and tons of cookies, biscuits, and other baked goods. It was really nice but I’m looking forward to going this time even more because I know more of the parents this year. I’ll have to take pictures this year too, last time I was a little shy about it since I didn’t really know anyone.

Before the tea, there’s an assembly in the gym where they have the whole school come and sit down and the principal gives out an appreciation certificate to all the parents who volunteered over the year. It’s almost like an awards show where each person is called to come down and pick up their certificate and it’s fun because all the kids applaud and cheer – it makes you feel a little like a rock star. Last year I remember most of Hayley’s class was reaching out to give me high fives as I walked past. It’s the closest I’ll get to being a celebrity at this point in my life!

Hayley’s extra excited about it because the tea goes past the end of the school day so she gets to go down to the daycare with her friends to play. Every once in awhile she asks me why I can’t put her into the after-school daycare and I point out that it’s because I work from home and therefore we DON’T NEED IT, but sometimes she wishes she could play with her friends, so this will be fun for her too.

*******

All wet

I stayed up past midnight two nights in a row and got up with Hayley for school at 6:30 two mornings in a row. It’s not a good combination, I’m exhausted today and not in that good, hilarious loopy kind of way. It’s more of that “holy hell I’m going to pass out and sleep for 36 hours straight” kind of way. Perhaps tonight I could try to get to bed before the day is actually over, yes?

(Magic 8 Ball says: Don’t count on it.)

A weekend of Mother's Day

Pretty in pink

Considering the fact that Mother’s Day is only one day, I actually had a really great weekend altogether. My one disappointment was that I didn’t get to see my own mom due to circumstances beyond everyone’s control but hopefully it will work out for getting to see her next weekend. Other than that, Friday through Sunday were awesome.

George’s sister and her husband came for the weekend and since the kids were excited to see them, they ended up staying at George’s parents’ house for supper. Because of that, George and I actually went out to eat by ourselves. We didn’t go for a fancy meal – we actually just went to Kentucky Fried Chicken to try out that new Star Wrap thing. Verdict: More filling than it looks, pretty tasty, and was clearly invented by someone who was completely stoned (chicken strips, salad, tortilla chips, sauce, and cheese wrapped in a soft tortilla? Definitely made by a stoner). However, what made it great was that we were able to just EAT in peace without having to deal with anything else and we were able to talk without interruption. That’s a nice change of pace! Afterwards I took the dog for a long walk in the woods and then had an hour of quiet to finish up my work for the weekend before the kids came home.

Speaking of the woods, I found a new spot I had never seen before and was greatly confused by what was sitting in the middle of it. Because who the hell expects to see a REALLY old and completely rusted out car in the woods, especially when there are currently only footpaths, no roads.

Uhhh...

Weird.

Saturday was the day that my parents were supposed to come over for dinner so I passed the morning by cleaning up and getting ready for the visit while George did some shopping. When my mom called to tell me they couldn’t make it I thought maybe we could invite someone else to come over for dinner instead. However, when George’s sister showed up to take the kids out for awhile, we ended up asking if they could go over there for supper again. When they said yes and George and I were alone once again, I ended up being able to get the one “present” that I really truly wanted for Mother’s Day.

Not that, you pervs.

We went to see Star Trek! Seriously, I have been climbing the walls waiting to see it and I assumed the weekend would be too busy for me to get to the theater. When George asked me to go check the showtimes at the theater I would have done a backflip if I was physically able to perform one.

The show started at 6:40 and I was so paranoid that they’d sell all the tickets out that we were there about 40 minutes early. It didn’t sell out but the theater was definitely jam packed with only the first two rows empty (the rows where you can’t move your neck for three days because of craning to see the screen).

I can not lie to you: That movie was amazing. Seriously. It was exciting from start to finish and I’m not entirely sure that I blinked at all for the entire two hours because I was afraid I might miss something. George had to slip off to the washroom for a minute halfway through and when he said he’d be right back I think I asked him, “are you insane?!”

I only saw it a few days ago and I already want to see it again. Chris Pine as James T. Kirk? AWESOME.

The kids went to bed pretty quickly once they got home after 9 pm, so that was nice since it left me a few hours to enjoy a couple of glasses of the red wine that we had lying around.

On Sunday I didn’t really get to sleep in, but I did get to lounge around in bed for several hours and I dozed on and off which was nice. Hayley brought in all the stuff that she had made for me in school and a pendant that she and Breanna had picked out for me the day before, then Hayley made toast for me for breakfast in bed (George handled the coffee though!). A couple of hours later, George made bacon and eggs for brunch too, so I was pretty full for awhile.

We mostly just took it easy after that. We went over to his parents’ house for an hour later in the day because we had a DVD with all the photos that I took at his sister’s wedding (all 200+ of them!) and the photos from their honeymoon. It was fun to look back at all those pictures.

Once I got the kids into bed, I just spent the evening relaxing with some TV, the Internet, and a little more wine, and that was the perfect end to a really good weekend. In a move that is so utterly uncharacteristic of me that I wonder if I was abducted by aliens, I didn’t take any pictures of myself with the kids for Mother’s Day. I’m not sure why I didn’t, I guess I was just too busy. Busy being relaxed. And really, that’s not too bad in the end.

I hope everyone else had a great weekend too, especially the moms!

*******

In other news, I have a review up for Colgate Max White toothpaste.

Also, I totally forgot to link to this when I wrote it, but I vented a slight grievance that I have with Scholastic over at the Canada Moms Blog.

Is it lunch time already? Good lord, where is the time going today?!

Rain, pain, and something awesome

Day 69: Slippery when wet

It was pouring rain this morning, which is not necessarily the best way to get me to leap out of bed with joy at meeting the a.m. you know? Rainy weather is what usually makes me want to lie in bed with the covers pulled up high, a cup of coffee on the night table, and a good book (or my laptop) in my hands. Unfortunately, it was Wednesday, not Sunday, so there was no lounging to be had.

When we got outside, Hayley at least made me smile. The water was rushing down the streets and gushing loudly into the sewers. She heard the gurgling sound, stopped to listen for a second, umbrella clutched in her hands, and then she grinned and said, “Mommy! The sewers are singing a song with the water!”

I guess rain can’t be all bad if it’s musical, right?

*******
She was less cheery when she came home from school. At lunch recess she was running around and someone bumped into her, knocking her to the ground, and she sprained her ankle. We wrapped it up in a bandage to help her out, but she spent the rest of the afternoon and evening either crawling or sitting on a cushion and scooting herself around the floors. I pointed out that she can’t crawl all over the school tomorrow and eventually managed to get her to walk around by showing her how to put minimal weight on that foot, but good lord.

The DRAMA.

I don’t mean to sound like an uncaring mother, and I know a sprain hurts. But I guarantee, a greater drama queen has never existed. To listen to her moan about it you would think that she had actually shattered every bone in her body.

I think I’ll be sending a note into the school asking them not to make her go out for recess or lunch recess if she doesn’t feel up to it.

*******
Something awesome happened back in early February, but I was asked to keep it on the down low until everything was formalized. That was HARD because I was excited. However, everything is up and running now so I am free to spread the word.

Catherine of Her Bad Mother contacted me to let me know that the Silicon Valley Moms blog had expanded and was now adding a Canada Moms Blog to its impressive roster. That’s interesting enough, but they wanted me to be one of the writers for it.

I can’t tell you how flattered and honored I was to be asked. Seriously. When I saw the final list of contributing bloggers, there were so many names that I recognized because I read them all the time; the names I didn’t know were immediately added to my Google Reader list and let me tell you, I am in some EXCELLENT company over there.

We’ve been posting for a little while now but I wanted to wait until I had something to add as well. Today I finally got my first post up – please feel free to pop on over to read “All Aboard for Junk Food” and while you’re at it, throw a comment in if you could. Then when you’re done be sure to check out the other incredible bloggers with whom I am sharing the space.

Pretty damn cool!