Wednesday, August 31, 2011

New Random Top Ten Lists

Top Ten 13 Driving Pet Peeves... click here

Top Ten Ways To Piss Me Off... click here

What I Have Learned Wednesday

1. I have learned that the word "usufruct" means the right to use the property of another as long as it isn't damaged. Hmm... I think this is a made up word by Alex so he can justify taking Jacob's earphones without asking him.

2. I have learned that these are difficult times, but that we are not alone.

3. I have learned that I should not automatically assume someone has it all together and is not dealing with difficult and painful issues in their private life.

4. I have learned that, after nearly ten years, images, thoughts and memories from 9/11 still make me feel like I got punched in the gut.

5. I learned that the new sections of the Bay Bridge's eastern spans were made in China, shipped here and the latest ones (4 sections) weigh over 5,000 tons.

6. I learned that an iPhone will auto correct a blogspot URL ( to ""

7. I learned that an autodidact is a self-taught person. I saw the word in an article about Jerry Lewis. Someone described him as "the ultimate autodidact." So, naturally, I had to look it up.

8. I learned, sadly, that Jacob's cute moments, that I used to be able to share with friends and loved ones, have slowly transitioned into not-so-cute-teenage-moments that I don't want to share with anyone, except maybe a therapist.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Parental Muck

A few recent (very recent) personal examples of the messed-up-mucked-up-blood boiling-head exploding world that we commonly refer to as "parenting."

Yesterday. I leave work early (time that I will have to make up) so that I can get home in time to take 16 y/o to soccer practice by 5:15. We leave on time and are having a nice conversation on the way to the field. The traffic is heavy because it is commute time, but we are still cutting through it pretty well. I am just entering the freeway when out of the corner of my eye I see, said teenager, reach down to his bag, sit up quickly and with my ears I hear the barely audible "no." I quickly looked at him, noted the pathetically, panicked expression on his face and knew instantly what it meant. "No," I said. "You've got to be kidding me?" No answer, just the sheepish look of a young man who forgot his soccer cleats at home. Gah! I get off the freeway and head back home. We get home, get the cleats and head back to the field. We get to his 5:15 practice at 5:41. As we pull into the driveway the HS football team is practicing on the field and there is no soccer team to be found. He notices two teammates with their fathers parked on the side so we pull up and ask what is going on. "Practice is at 6. Do you believe that?" One of the teammates says. OMG. As darling teenager gets out of the car, he says to me, "At least we weren't late."

Today. This morning. 20 minutes before we leave for school. Younger-almost-teenager-middleschooler son says "Mom, I need to print something out real quick." WHAAAAT? (sidenote: the printer is in the boom-boom room where it has been since we painted last month. We haven't needed it so it has been sitting there untouched. Also, sidenote #2: The little terd said he finished all his homework last night and spent the entire night either outside playing with his friends or hanging around the house watching TV or playing with his iPod. Also, sidenote #3: he did the same thing the night before that as well). "Yeah, I need to print these pictures out for a math assignment." Ugh! Is your blood boiling? Mine is just re-telling this story. ANYWAY. I tell him he will need to get the printer out and turn it on. Turns out he needs to print some pictures he has on his iPod. Um? There is no connection to the printer for that. I tell him he will have to email them to himself, turn on the laptop and print them from there. He gets busy doing that and I notice there is no power cord. "You haven't plugged it in." I tell him. "I don't know where the plug is," he says. Um, did ya look right next to where you got the printer from? UGH! I track down the power cord and we start going back and forth about why he didn't do this the night before, etc., etc. I really lay into him about the whole situation. And, you know. Once the fury is unleashed, it cannot be calmed down. Meanwhile the clock is ticking. It is taking some time and he gets completely frustrated and says, er yells. "forget it. I'll just get a zero," and grabs the keys, slams the front door and goes to wait for me in the car. I wait for the pictures to print out and calmly bring them to the car where he is fit to be tied. I mean pissed off. Was it something I said? He takes a look at them and says he can't use them and crumples them up while shoving them into his back pack. Oh. No. He. Did. Not. Just. Do. That. I drag him back to the house. I tell him he is not going to school until he comes up with a solution to this. He is crying. I'm about to, but I'm still to mad. More yelling. I'm still trying to figure out what the stupid assignment is anyway. Something with the photos, facts and a timeline. That? Again, he had two days to complete. He is saying he doesn't know what exactly he is supposed to do, he was just hoping to bring the pictures and ask someone at lunch time how to put it together. There is so much I wanted to say. So many expletives I wanted to scream. So many places on his skinny body I wanted to kick. But I'm in crisis mode. This. Will. Get. Solved. Then, as if it couldn't get worse, he gets on this stubborn notion that he will just stay home from school, finish the assignment and turn it in Monday. No. Excuse me, I meant HELL NO. We debated about that. Big mistake. Never debate with a hormonal (almost) 13 year old. I went back to my dictator role and dolled out the decisions. Cut out the pictures, take them to school, hope and pray you can throw something together by 6th period. End of story. And in my head: I -don't-care-about-anything-that-is-coming-out-of -your-mouth-right-this-second-because-it-will-not-change-my-mind-now-go-go-go-go. I took him to school, went to the office and got him an "unexcused" tardy and off to work I went. *Exhausted before 9:00am*

Parenting is so fun. So, so, so very, very fun. *shaking and slowly hitting my head repeatedly on the desk in hopes that the memories will go away*

Most Quotable Friday

Twitter nuggets. Twuggets?

After the game, the king and the pawn go into the same box.

Bitterness, not forgiving and holding a grudge are like drinking poison and waiting for the other person to die.

Count your blessings, not your troubles. You'll make it through whatever comes along.

Life is like photography, we develop from the negatives.

"If you have time to whine and complain about something then you have the time to do something about it." - Anthony J. D'Angelo

Being nice to someone you dislike doesn't mean you're fake. It means you're mature enough to tolerate your dislike towards them.

When you really care about someone, their mistakes never change our feelings because the mind gets angry but it's the heart that still cares.

In the end, I will remember not the words of my enemies, but the silence of my friends.

If you want something different, DO something different.

If nothing is going right…. Go left.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Thursday Blurbs

1. Blubbering my way through another blurb. I'm deciding right now, as I wait for them to arrive at work, whether or not I should be mad at my co-workers for making me watch the world's saddest movie ever or thank them for making me watch one of the most amazing stories ever. I'm speaking, of course, about Hachi: A Dog's Story. I'm going to start crying again just thinking about it. *sigh* If you haven't seen (or heard of) this movie, please go see it. You will thank me, or not, later.

2. So how is that no wine for a month thing working out for you, you ask? Not so well. I broke down last Saturday and opened the bottle of La Crema I had. Saturday was day 20. I made it 2/3's of a month. Which? Isn't a month. I know. I don't really care, except for when Alex mentioned something. Which made me realize that he was paying attention and that I not only failed with my goal, but also fumbled a valuable teaching opportunity (and not the good kind of fumble where you get the ball back and make a first down). I'm truly starting to believe that I am really good at failing.

3. Alex is traveling to Seattle this weekend for a game. One game. That he may or may not even play in. That is the state of competitive soccer for Alex these days. He has been (at least at this point) been replaced as the #1 GK. They have a lot of games coming up, so things can always change. But he is going to have to be a big factor in making things change for himself. A lot of important stuff coming up for him in the near future. Time to grow up.

4. I started reading a Nicolas Sparks novel called "Safe Haven." I can't believe I've never read one of his books before. So many of them have become films like Nights in Rodanthe, Dear John, The Notebook, A Walk to Remember and Message In A Bottle. I'll have to start reading his other novels, the ones that haven't been made into movies. I also downloaded "One Day" onto my Kindle, by David Nicholls. I've heard great things about this one too. I love getting into a good, juicy read!

5. I'm still waiting for the proverbial fog to lift so that I can get back into fitness and overall well-being. I may have a few days to go. I see cracks here and there where the sun filters through, but the fog still permeates and refuses to leave. It is a process and I have faith that lift off will happen and I will be ready when it does.


7. Speaking of hockey... was I? I will be signing up Jacob for his season pretty soon. He played roller hockey this summer and had a pretty good time. Mostly because his team hasn't lost a game, but also because he is doing really well. He had a run in the last couple of weeks with a kid who, for whatever reason, wants to give him a hard time and he just gave it right on back to him. Jacob style. Which, as he poignantly pointed out, "isn't Alex style." No sweetie. Not at all. I can't wait for his season to start either.

8. I really need to play Monopoly. I haven't played Monopoly in a really long time. I really miss Park Place and Reading Railroad. Passing Go? Don't even get me started! I'm going to try and play this weekend. Oh wait. I have to wait until the money dries out from the rain. Stupid rain. Ruins everything. Sometimes the best opportunities to play Monopoly happen when it's raining. And then, because of the rain, we can't play. It is all about the timing. And? My timing has been off for a Looooooooooooooooong period of time. Let's get that board out and get to it. I'm the thimble!

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

What I've learned Wednesday

I have learned that I am the family buffer. I am the buffer between my husband and each of the kids. I am the buffer between my husband and the dog. I am the buffer between the kids. I am the buffer between myself and all the rest of them. And? When that buffer is weary and overworked... All hell breaks loose.

I learned that there is a word for "an overwhelming feeling of sadness for no particular reason." The word is hypophrenia. It feels good to have an actual word that means something that happens regularly in my life.

I learned that happiness comes from the soul and you have to choose it. You have to want it. If you don't want it, truly want it... then something different altogether chooses to grow inside of you. Something dark, something ominous. Something you might not be able to put your finger on, but you sense that it is there.

I learned that all the answers are within. You will never get the answers you seek by loking outward. No one knows you as you know yourself.

I learned that the word "collogue" means to confer secretly ( word of the day).

I learned that the one thing that unites all human beings, regardless of age, gender, religion, economic status or ethnic background, is that, deep inside, we ALL believe that we are above average drivers.

I learned that you will never find anybody who can give you a clear and compelling reason why we observe daylight savings time.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Most Quotable Friday

From the bottomless source of fun stuff that is.... Twitter. Happy Friday!

Sometimes it takes a really good fall to know where you stand.

Make sure you stand up for what’s right before you sit down to write about what’s wrong.

Go as far as you can see; when you get there, you'll be able to see farther.

Never get tired of doing little things for others, for those little things occupy the biggest part of their hearts.

Don’t dwell on what went wrong. Instead, focus on what to do next.

Keep reminding yourself if something is meant to be happen, God will find a way to make it work.

Survive is when you're in pain but you keep on living anyway.

Remember that life isn't about being fair, it's about surpassing the unfair reality.

"Tact is the art of making a point without making an enemy" ~ Sir Isaac Newton

It's not always about trying to fix something broken. It's also about starting all over & creating something better.

If you are patient in one moment of anger, you will escape a hundred days of sorrow.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Thursday Blurbs

1. No wine (or any alcohol) for the month of August, update: I still haven't had anything to drink! The last bottle of La Crema is still where it was on August 1st and I have not had a glass of wine since July 31st. I survived the night at the Improv, I held strong during lunch at BJ's for Brooke's birthday and I have made it through the stressers of everyday life for the last 18 days.

2. I have been on a sort of pity bender, though, for the last couple of weeks. Yeah, these little stretches are getting harder and harder to get out of. Sometimes when I think I'm out and back on the right track I get slammed right back against the cold, hard, cement mental block that is my life, personality and attitude. FML.

3. Brooke's massage and mani/pedi day was fun. We, as previously mentioned, went to lunch at BJ's. I had the flat bread pizza and salad lunch combo. Yum! Omg, the margaritas looked so yummy too. Ugh. We did, however, indulge in the chocolate chip pizookie. Heaven!

4. After lunch we went to the massage place. The massage her friend had recommended was actually an hour long foot massage (40 min. feet and 20 min. shoulder and back), so we opted instead for the 30 minute table massage. Um? Ouch. I'm telling you it hurt. She used elbows and all her strength thrown behind it to grind at my back and shoulders. I had to shake her off a couple of times because I couldn't stand it. There was a moment of euphoria for the few minutes after it was over... but other than that I don't think I'll be doing that again any time soon.

5. We went all the way back to my side of town for the mani/pedis. The nail place there is only $20 for a pedicure and $10 for a manicure. Apparently most places charge a whole lot more. We both got the same bluish/teal color for our toes and I got a pink/coral shade for my nubs (can't really call them finger nails). Anyway, fun relaxing day spent with Brooke and Kathy.

6. Back to school this week! Alex started on Tuesday and Jacob started yesterday. Ah, the new school year full of so much hope and promise... until the grades start coming out. Well, we we've got some new rules put in place and if I don't completely drop the ball we should see some improvement this year. Knock on wood.

7. Not much else to blurb about. I've been watching a lot of movies on Funshion. Wow, so many movies I haven't seen! I feel like a little kid when I'm looking up all the movies on there. Last night I watched Super 8. It was pretty good, I guess because I didn't have any expectations? I've also seen The Company Men, Bad Teacher, Hereafter, The Kids Are Alright, The Fighter, Conviction and Barney's Version.

8. Yeah, I need to stop with the movies and get back to the gym. Just waiting for the fog to lift. *sigh*

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

What I Have Learned Wednesday

First day of school edition:

1. I have learned that athazagoraphobia is the fear of being forgotten.

2. I have learned that Brent Burns (new defenseman for the San Jose Sharks) has a Harry Potter tattoo AND is a ninja.

3. I have learned that alcohol is not my core issue, nor is food. My core issue is denial and the unwillingness to face fears, fulfill untapped potential or deal head on with unpleasant situations.

4. I have learned that if nothing is going right, go left.

5. I have learned that I actually do positive things everyday and that I should focus on those things instead of the negative things.

6. I have learned that there is nothing deep down inside us except what we have put there ourselves.

7. I have learned there is so much more I could be doing to improve, enjoy and live my life fully.

8. I have learned that my kids are perfectly capable of tuning me out but are inexplicably, incapable of tuning each other out.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

12am Pity Party

You know you're a loser when...

you are 45 years old and eat cherry pop tarts for breakfast.

you eat Ben and Jerry's Phish Food for dinner and watch 3 movies in your room on Saturday night.

you go to bed without washing your face or brushing your teeth.

you wake up and try to bargain with God to just let you sleep some more so you won't have to deal with your life.

you know your kids are going to end up in jail and you don't do anything about it.

you trade one addiction for another.

when you can't find one appealing place in your head to let your mind wander.

when you have everything but feel nothing.

when you seriously consider smoking the weed that you confiscated from your teenager.

when life has passed you by and you've got nothing to show for it except a run down house and bad credit.

your teenagers tune you out, but react to every little thing that they say to eachother.

when you wake up in the morning and recite "you know you're a loser when" thoughts in your head.

you are in a dark, dark place and can't find your way out.

you buy healthy food at the store then go pig out on junk food.

you could keep coming up with these things all night.

Friday, August 12, 2011

Most Quotable Friday

From my Twitter feed collection (yes, I have a collection)...

Friends help you to buy your lunch, but best friends will eat your lunch without your permission.

Just be yourself. All the good personalities are taken.

That awkward moment when you finish watching a TV series and you don’t know what to do with your life anymore.

The true heart can touch the poison of hatred without being harmed.

Realized: "Google before you tweet" is the new "think before you speak.".

Unhappiness cannot exist on its own. It occurs because of thoughts, which can be changed.

A truth that's told with bad intent beats all the lies you can invent.

I changed all my passwords to "incorrect" So my computer just tells me when I forget.

My abilities are only limited by those who try to test them.

No price is too high to pay for the privilege of owning yourself.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Thursday Blurbs

1. Howdy Y'all - welcome to the Thursday Blurbs. Let's see, what is going on around here that would possibly spark any interest. Hmmm... Yeah. It has been kind of slow. Fact: if Thursday Blurbs starts out with "Howdy Y'all?" Run for the hills. I'm serious. There can be nothing noteworthy here. Look at little man over here at the right. His troubles are kind of symbolic to my last few weeks... poor fella.

2. Still reading huh? Well, okay. I did make a pretty cool discovery recently, thanks to my coworkers Jennifer and Victoria. It is a Chinese website called Funshion. It is a site where you can download and watch movies for free. Big blockbuster movies. You can find almost any movie on there. Yes, the website is in Chinese, but you can search for movies in English and it gets translated. The movies (American movies) are all in English, but they do have Chinese subtitles. Most are really good quality, some even in HD, and are rated by users. I'm told that once in a while you get a stinker (quality wise, i.e. it is a recorded from a movie theater) but for the most part they are pretty good... and free. So, don't forget that.

3. In the last couple of days I have watched Water For Elephants, Source Code, Lincoln Lawyer and Tangled. Cool, right? Not as cool as when I hook up the video wire that I ordered from Amazon that will connect the lap top to the TV and we can watch the movies in HD and on the flat screen. Can't wait. Who needs Netflix?

4. Tomorrow Brooke has set us up to go get massages. Hour long massages (I am melting into my chair just thinking about it) followed by mani/pedis. Girls Day! Her birthday is Saturday and we have been talking about doing something like this for years, ever since we met. Since our birthdays are so close together we have always schemed to do something like this... and now we are doing it. Whoohoo! We also always talked about bringing cocktails to the soccer games... and three weeks ago she made that happen too. I think we are on a roll.

5. School starts next week. On Monday Jacob has a doctor's appointment in the morning for a physical and his TDAP immunization shot. Followed shortly by a dentist appointment for both of them. Heh, heh. Fun day for them. I guess we can do something a little fun after that. Maybe a movie or go out to lunch. Alex starts school on Tuesday and Jacob starts on Wednesday.

6. Just booked a ticket for Alex to fly to Seattle for a Far West Regional League game against a team from Washington. I hope he plays. It is going to be close to $500 for just one game. I e-mailed Julie and Kevin... it would be so cool if they could come out to the game. If he plays that is. If they do that means he will get to meet Ellie before me. *Jealous*

New Top Ten List Posted

Top Ten Favorite Words... That start with "A"

Go see the list

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

New Post From Random Top Ten Lists

Top Ten Places I'd Rather Be Than Where I Am Right Now...

Check it out!

What I've Learned Wednesday

I learned that "silent" and "listen" are spelled with the same letters.

I learned that the most shoplifted book of all time is The Bible.

I learned that apples, not caffeine, are more efficient at waking you up in the morning.

I learned that San Jose is up to 30 homicides, SO FAR, in 2011. We are not the safest small city any more.

I learned that humility is hard and that pride stands in the way of happiness.

I learned that not being able to get up in the morning is an actual "thing" and it has a real name - Dysania. Never mind. It is NOT in the dictionary.

I learned not to trust everything I read. *sigh*

I have learned that I have very addictive tendencies. While this is not news, I have been aware of this for years... I have recently learned that when I focus on a certain addiction (i.e. drinking) it is easily replaced by another addiction (i.e. eating). I am never really free, am I?

Tuesday, August 09, 2011

No Vino - Day 9

Well, I am doing it. I haven't had a glass of wine, or any alcohol for that matter, for nine days. Instead, I have been going back to my old addiction, food. Last night could have been a great end to a great day. I was supposed to have gone to the YMCA after coming home from work. I was going to do the circuit weights followed by Zumba at 6:30. Then, I was supposed to come home and eat a sensible meal. Imagine what I would have felt like waking up this morning? Hmm, guess I'll just have to do just that, imagine, because that is what NOT happened.
When I got home from work the house was empty. The boys were out and Juan was at work. So, what did I do? I loaded up a movie on the laptop, grabbed a bowl of ice cream, got comfortable and watched the movie in my room. Sigh.
Tonight I face the Sportsplex again where Jacob practices roller hockey. So, here is the war that is waging inside of my head: What should I be more afraid of? The vending machines (candy and chips), the restaurant (fried food) or the bar? At this point it is a toss up. I'm not really sure what the point of all of this is if it is going to be like this.
Part of me has the desire to change the tape inside my head, while another part feels it is hopeless and nothing will ever change. Another part just laughs at the futility of it all.

Saturday, August 06, 2011

Giving Up The Vino Day 6

Day Six... sucked.

I hated today. I still do. Just go away day, just go away.
Last night was so fun. I had a great time with Victoria, Jennifer and their friend Chau. We had dinner at the Sante Grill and then walked over to the Improv for the show. I had a blast. The show was funny, I had a good time and I didn't have to have a drink to enjoy myself. How refreshing!
But today? I think I mentioned that it sucked. I didn't have a drink or a glass of wine, but I would kill (and trust me when I say this) for a glass of wine right now. In this, my cataclismic, emotionally charged low, I am considering taking one of my few remaining vicodins, just to take the edge off. I want to disappear and never come back. I am in such a dark place right now that I seriously cannot think of one bright thought to get me through. I just don't care. There is nothing to care about.
Yes, of course it's hormonal and an emotional reaction based on events that took place today. Just reminders of what an epic failure I am at life, motherhood and everything else in between. Everything just came in waves. Failures of my past, present and assummed future. When I took the dog out for a walk I just cried the whole way. I still want to go somewhere by myself and cry.

Just three hours more and it will be tomorrow. Day 7. A new day. Please God, give me strength to finish this day on some kind of positive note.

Friday, August 05, 2011

Most Quotable Friday

More treats from Twitter... Happy Friday! Enjoy.

There is always, always, always, something to be thankful for.

Don’t miss the opportunity to do something better today by wasting time regretting yesterday.

You will only receive a negative idea if your mind is fertile ground for that idea.

Some people are like clouds, when they disappear, it’s a brighter day.

I’m experiencing life at a rate of several WTF’s a minute…

Someday everything will make sense. So laugh at the confusion, smile through the tears & remind yourself that everything happens for a reason.

You're only as dumb as the situation you didn't learn from.

God never gives you something that you can't handle, and never takes back anything without which you can't live.

Judge someone not by what he has, but instead by what he gives away.

Dreams have nothing to do with your Fate.