Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Super Hodgepodge

So, what day is it? I have no idea, but I do know it's time for the Hodgepodge. I'm so sorry to leave you all hanging in the middle of the how-I-met-my-future-daughter-in-law story which I started, what, a week and a half ago? But I started a new job in additional to my old one. I squished my old job into four days a week, and now I'm working at the church as my husband's secretary on Mondays.

In theory it made perfect sense--several hours one day a week to do a little typing, a little organizing and filing. What could be easier? For one thing, living with the boss gives a whole new meaning to the term "bringing your work home with you". So I started the job two weeks ago, and they've spent the last week trying to talk me down from the ledge.

I would have detailed all this for you on the blog, but there was no wi-fi on the ledge, so that will have to wait for a later date. In the meantime, we have the Hodgepodge. Seven questions and a random thought. After reading my extremely random answers, and leaving a comment of course, (don't drive me back out on the ledge with your silence!) click on the link to read other answers and to post your own. You know you have some. What are you waiting for?

1. Will you watch the Super Bowl? If so who will you root for? If you are outside the USA what is the 'big deal sporting event' in your own country?
I might watch parts of it after our Sunday night church service, but I'm not a big fan of either team, so I'll probably pay attention to the commercials most. Typically there's some good chick stuff scheduled on other channels during the Super Bowl, so I might try to get my estrogen levels back to normal in my mostly testosterone household.

2. Is ignorance bliss?
Intentional ignorance is both stupid and dangerous. However, there are times when I think I'm better off not knowing what went on at home with the boys while I was at work.

3. Which of the seven dwarfs are you? (and just in case your Disney is a little bit rusty, here they are-Bashful, Doc, Dopey, Grumpy, Happy, Sleepy, and Sneezy)
I don't play minor roles. On some days I'm Snow White and on some days I'm the Wicked Queen, but I always get top billing.

4. When you are riding in the car with another couple how do you organize the seating? (Men up front? Women up front? Couples sit together?) And thanks to Lori at Mountain Woman at Heart for the question! Everyone go say hi to Lori.
It depends on whether I want to talk (men up front, women in back) or hold hands (couples sit together).

5. What is beauty?
A more interesting question might be, if beauty is in the eye of the beholder, then who is beholding me?

6. If someone asks you to bring an appetizer or a dessert to a party in their home, which would you choose?
I have a reputation. Mostly they just ask me to bring the ice. And I'm okay with that.

7. What is your crowd pleasing go-to appetizer?
In spite of my reputation, I do have an appetizer that I do fairly well. It's called Hanky-Panky. I might share the recipe at a later date, but for now I think I'm just gonna leave that one to your imagination.

8. Insert your own random thought here.
If you're gonna keep a lot of plates spinning in the air, don't use your favorite dishes.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Mama Grizzly In-Laws

So this year I'm learning something totally new. I've got to learn how to be a mama-in-law. No easy fete, I can tell you. (Or is it feat?) says it's a feat. Either way, it's a stretch for me. Everyone's heard the horror stories. And who hasn't seen an episode of Everbody Loves Raymond? Just a TV show you say? Maybe. But we actually used to know a family that could have modeled for that show. Backhanded insults masquerading as compliments. The mother-in-law cleaning the daughter-in-law's house. Constant undermining and manipulation. I think she could've given lessons to Machiavelli. Ultimately the daughter-in-law learned to hold her own. She wasn't as good at manipulation, but she knew a thing or two about Japanese wrestling and the art of using your opponent's own weight against him. After that the matches were a little more even and a lot more fun to watch. Pop some popcorn and we had better entertainment than wrestling. More realistic, too. The mother-in-law was still champ, but at least the daughter-in-law won a few rounds.

As we watched the daughter-in-law crawl from the ring one night, Matt turned to me and begged me to never treat his future wife that way. He was in high school at the time, and had no idea who his future wife might be, but still ...

Like any good mother, I took the opportunity to teach him that, when he was married, he and his wife would be one. She should come first in his life, and if I ever forgot that important point, he had my permission to remind me of that fact. I did add that I thought 32 hours of labor entitled me to a card and flowers on Mother's Day and a call on my birthday, but other than that, she was Number One.

Also like any good mother, I added a couple of clauses to the contract--the wife was Number One after she became the wife (girlfriend doesn't get the same status), and I would never be mean to a daughter-in-law, assuming he chose a daughter-in-law that I approved of. That may sound harsh, but let's face it--I put over two decades into raising that boy, and I was not about to turn him over to the first Sarah, Jane or Mary that smiled and batted her eyelashes at him.

In spite of the fact that I tried to raise him to be discerning, a pretty face went a long way with Matt. Not so with me. A girl had to be more than pretty before I gave the nod of approval. This discriminating attitude might be why I found out about Matt's first college girlfriend by accident. He was going on and on about a gift "A" had given him for Valentine's Day, while I was still trying to figure out just exactly why this was the first I was hearing about "A".

After awhile it became apparent why "A" was flying under the radar. She was nice, but she was definitely not permanent Boyd material. I feel it's important for my children to make use of all of their parents' vast accumulation of knowledge, so I did my best to gently pass on what I knew about quality mates. Don't get me wrong--I wasn't rude or insulting. But I did not want him to make the colossal mistake of interpreting a lack of disapproval as approval.

Matt's relationship with "A" drifted apart naturally at the end of the semester, an occurrence my husband had predicted would happen. Without any help from us, I might add. Relieved, but fearing that perhaps we had narrowly escaped disaster, I asked Matt if perhaps he had ever gotten the impression that we approved of "A" as his girlfriend. No, he assured me dryly. He was well aware that we weren't happy that he was dating her. I stared at him. "And you still went on and dated her for almost six months?"

That was the end of that conversation.

Matt went on to date other girls after that, but he never really settled down to one girl. In fact, he had a lot of friends that were girls. He chatted with them on facebook and texted with different girls off and on.  I knew for a fact that a couple of those girls wanted more than friendship, but as long as they didn't push for anything more, Matt was willing to let the friendships stand.

Friendships I didn't mind. So as he mentioned this girl or that girl, I didn't do much more than nod or smile. I wasn't worried about electronic friendships. That wasn't like dating. At least, I wasn't worried until he mentioned a girl he'd met at the beginning of the summer. They'd actually met twice the week he'd visited her town, but then they'd become facebook friends and they texted and called each other occasionally.

And then Matt said he wanted her to come for a visit. Did I mention he'd only met her twice? And he wanted her to come meet the family. Her name was Kylee.

And Mama Grizzly reared her ugly head.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

The Snowy Hodgepodge

And we're back for another round of the Hodgepodge. Seven questions and a random and sometimes deeply profound thought. After reading my answers, and leaving a comment, of course, click on the link to see what everyone else has to say!

1. Every January 1st since 1976 Lake Superior University has published a list of words they'd like to see banished from the Queen's English. Words may be banished due to mis-use, over-use or just general uselessness and they receive over 1000 nominations. Here are the fourteen words/phrases they'd like to see banished in 2011-viral, epic, fail, wow factor, a-ha moment, back story, BFF, man up, refudiate, Mama Grizzlies, The American People, facebook/google when used as verbs, I'm just sayin', and Live life to the fullest.

What word or phrase would you like to see banished from our everyday vocabulary in 2011? You can choose one from the 'official list' or you can get creative and come up with your own.
I would like to see the phrase the Queen's English banished. The Queen ought to man up and admit that she doesn't own the language anymore. There might have been a time in her back story when her title added some wow factor, but eventually the American People had an a-ha moment and realized that they could live life to the fullest without having to owe everything to someone who wasn't even their BFF. I'm just sayin'.

2. Do you consider opportunity something that comes to you or something you create for yourself?
I don't usually recognize opportunity, even when it comes up and smacks me in the forehead. However, I'm married to Indiana Jones who not only finds his own opportunity, but smashes through walls of opposition to create opportunity out of absolutely nothing.

3. Since we're all eating healthy this month, ahem, what's included in your favorite salad? Is there dressing?
My salad always has dressing. I don't like naked lettuce.

4. The fourth Monday in January is said to be Blue Monday...aka the most depressing day of the year. The date was calculated using many factors including weather, debt level, time since Christmas, time since we've failed at our new year resolutions, low motivation and feeling a need to take action. Do you get the blues this time of year and if so what is something you do to lift your spirits?
I'm lucky this year. I just had two wisdom teeth pulled, so if I'm feeling blue I just take a few more pain pills.

5. Do you wear a watch? Any other everyday jewelry essentials?
I do not wear a watch. Why would I want to keep reminding myself of how late I am?

6. What is something useful you learned in high school?
If you do not learn from history, you are doomed to repeat it.  Hmm. True on so many levels.

7. Do you use an accountant when completing and filing your income tax returns or do you attempt to muddle through all by yourself?
Income tax! Is it April already?

8. Insert your own random thought here.
I think it's time for another pain pill.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

I'm Back--But Not Necessarily Better

The good thing about pain medication: it makes the pain go away. (Sometimes!)

The bad thing about pain medication: it makes the pain go away enough that you can focus on the fact that you actually agreed to go to the dentist you swore you'd never see again.

I know I gave you a link in my last post to the ordeal I went through two years ago when I last had a wisdom tooth pulled, but I was out of my head enough that I neglected to mention that particular story goes on for several days. After clicking the link, you need to click the "newer post" link at the bottom of each section of the story to read through the whole thing. But who wants to do that anyway?

The short version is this: two years ago I had a wisdom tooth pulled. The dentist numbed the wrong side of my mouth. Then he numbed the right side of my mouth multiple times. I ended up numb from my nose to my throat for the next eight hours. When the numbness finally wore off I discovered that, not only had I required stitches, but the dentist had accidentally sewn the inside of my cheek to my jaw. Obviously I would never darken the door of that man's office again.

Until this past Monday. Clearly pain makes me do strange things. I had the choice of finding another dentist and waiting however long until they had an opening, then getting a referral to an oral surgeon and waiting however long until they had an opening before getting the problem taken care of. Or I could call this dentist and get the offending tooth (teeth) pulled the next day. I chose expediency, and was rewarded with an immediate prescription for pain meds. Gotta love the good drugs.

Unfortunately, I didn't get good drugs. I got drugs that made me incredibly ill, and also took enough edge off the pain that I panicked at the thought that I had actually allowed myself to be talked into going back to this doctor. I was less than pleasant on Wednesday morning as I prepared for my appointment.

I think I had a right to be cranky edgy.

This time the dentist only numbed one side (the correct one), and pulled two teeth (the correct ones). No stitches were required, although there was a great deal of tugging and pulling and pressure and cracking and breaking before the teeth came out. Apparently I like my teeth and don't let go of them easily.

I spent the rest of the week alternating between the bed and the couch. I read quite a few books and I ate a lot of soup.

Now a week later, my schedule is back to normal. But I'm still occasionally swollen and still experiencing pain. I've been on antibiotics since the day before he pulled the teeth, and I don't have infection. I am a slow healer. I don't want to go back and see him for any reason, but am I this slow a healer?

I have no idea. What I do know is, I still have a right to be cranky edgy. So how long should I wait before pressing my luck and going back to see this guy?

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

A Less Than Auspicious Start

Happy New Year. I debated greatly how to start the new year. I could have gone with some challenging resolutions because that's incredibly original, right? Except that my own goals for the year are both murky and personal. And not especially clear to me yet.

So then I thought I'd start the year with a clean house. But when I tried to enlist the boys' help, they pointed out that I had a clean house for Christmas. Apparently I'm only allowed that once every 365 days.

Fine. I'll start the year healthy, then. I've still got more weight to lose, and I was going to add gym membership to my activities this month anyway.

After violent bouts of pain and a sleepless night, I spent the morning at the dentist. The rest of the day has been a drug-induced haze, and I'm scheduled to have two wisdom teeth pulled tomorrow morning. Considering my previous experience in this area, I'm considering drawing a big "X" on the side they're supposed to work on tomorrow.

At the moment I'm struggling to decide if I want to be out of my head with pain, or violently ill from pain medication. I think I'll go lay down while I decide. I'll be back when I'm better.

Unless this time he sews my fingers to my jaw.

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