This Suburban Life

yogi-tea-fortune-happinessI sit at my writers’ group on Saturday night with my third (or maybe it’s my fourth) glass of wine in my hand and feel so lucky to be int this group of smart, funny, kind women who happen to be great writers. They encourage me and hold me accountable and don’t judge me. We laugh and cry and commiserate and tell each other our triumphs and heartaches and fears. I look forward to our meeting every month. I know that the next morning I will write “Writers’s group” in my happiness journal for Saturday, February 10th.

A little after midnight I receive a text from Dave asking if I’ve heard from Marley yet. She’s at a concert downtown at the Shrine and she said she’d text us on the way home. We knew it would run late, but it seems too late. I tell him I’ll come home and wait up for her.

Rina lives down the street and Dave dropped us off so we could take a Lyft home, but Kim only had one glass of wine and even though she lives in the opposite direction she says she’ll give us a ride. Julie’s husband dropped her off too, installing Uber in her phone so she can get home that way. Kim offers to drive her home too, but she declines, saying she lives too far (all the way in Thousand Oaks). We tell her Lyft is better and she promises to download Lyft next time. We tell her to text us when she gets home.

Marley’s phone goes straight to voicemail and she does not answer texts or Facetime. I’m not quite worried. Yet. But I’m tired and want to go to bed. Marley calls at 12:44. She’s sorry! No service! She can’t believe how late the show went. They are on their way home, but might stop for a quick bite to eat once they get in the Valley. I tell her fine, as long as they go through the drive through.

I sit on the couch with the dog snuggled next to me and try to read my book , but it makes me too sleepy, so I scroll through Instagram the blue light from my cell phone keeping me semi-alert. Julie group texts to thank Laurel for a lovely evening and to let us know that she is home safe and her Uber cherry has been popped. I let them know that Marley is on her way home. Drunk “I love you” texts circle around. I try to doze off but don’t really and Marley walks through the door at 1:45. She had fun and I’m happy that live music gives her the same thrill it gives me. Since it’s technically Sunday, maybe I’ll hold onto that feeling for my Sunday happiness journal entry.

Sunday morning I wake up late, but not nearly late enough. I’m lucky that too much wine and cheese and not nearly enough sleep did not net me a hangover. I have a cup of coffee and make toast out of the Trader Joe’s beer bread I made for dinner Friday night and chat with Dave. I’m meeting my mom at Costco at 10:00, but have to run errands first so I need to get moving. I go to Bed Bath & Beyond for hairspray, mascara, and a nail file, using my $5 off $15 coupon. I text my mom and ask if we can meet at 10:15. I didn’t get going quite as early as I’d meant to and I’m running late as usual. Then I head to Target with a return and pick up cedar balls and store brand peanut butter for the dog’s Kong. Small, but necessary suburban errands.

We take our time and Costco and buy too much and chat in the parking lot after loading up our cars as our frozen items grow warm.  I don’t get home until almost noon. I put the groceries away, make myself some tuna, and start some laundry. At 1:00 I insist Marley wake up. I spend the rest of the day on the laundry, organizing papers and filing, getting my tax documents together for my appointment with our accountant on Thursday. Sunday busy work.

Rina and Kim and I have been texting throughout the day. Rina has clothes she had put aside for a clothing swap that Kim and I went to a couple of weeks ago that Rina was unable to attend and wants us to come over and look at them before she donates them. We were supposed to go over at 4:30 but she is stuck at a birthday party and it’s looking like 5:00. Too late, I say. I need to start dinner. Maybe another night? Kim calls me at 4:59. “I’m coming over to get you. I’m already on my way. I need to cross this off my list. It will only take a few minutes.” I inform my family I’m being kidnapped and dinner will be a bit later and head out the door.

We go through Rina’s clothes quickly. Rina’s family is going to a friend’s for dinner at 5:30. Kim has been hiking all day and still needs to make her Sunday trip to the market. And I have to make dinner. But it doesn’t feel rushed. It feels nice to be with my friends, even briefly. A quick reprieve from the busyness of a Sunday evening. Again I feel lucky. To live in a Shangri-La at the northern most end of Los Angeles. To spend a Sunday doing mundane and ordinary, yet useful things.

I go home and Dave and Marley are watching TV and I smell popcorn, their hunger unable to wait for my late dinner. After a dinner of roasted chicken, roasted cauliflower, green beans and rice, we all clean up and then I walk the dog. I choose “new country” on Pandora and decide to do a two and a half mile loop. Dave and Marley want to watch something that doesn’t interest me, so I retreat to the bedroom to read my book. It’s only 8:00, but I put on my pajamas and snuggle into bed early at the end my my ordinary Sunday in the suburbs. I am content.

What will I write in my happiness journal for Sunday? All of it.

When Suburban Moms Go to Concerts This is What Happens

“Look how white my legs are,” I said to Dave. I was getting dressed for a Jake Owen concert on the beach -the Coastal Country Jam- and I’d put shorts on for the first time this year. It felt like summer outside, but my legs are nowhere near summer ready.

“You’re going to a country show. You will definitely not be the whitest person there. That’s the last thing you have to worry about,” he told me.

My husband’s funny.

Usually when I go to the beach I put on board shorts and a tank top over a bikini (I don’t know why – it’s not like any part of me except my feet is going in the water), pull my dirty hair into a ponytail and throw on a hat. But this was a concert. I wanted to look cute. So even though it was at the beach I put on make-up and ran my dirty hair through a flat iron, hoping it would hold off the frizz the humid beach air likes to gift upon me for a little while. I was bringing a hat, but if I chose to put it on my bangs would be smashed and my hair would be under the hat for the rest of the day.

“Okay, look how old and jiggly my legs are,” I said.

“I’ve got to go outside and play with the dog,” he responded.

My husband is also smart.

I then had the following text exchange with my girlfriend:

I decided to go with the shorts. I definitely need more time at the gym (which is impossible right now because my plantar fasciitis is flaring up), but my legs are not going to get tan under leggings.

I put the leggings in my beach bag along with my favorite jacket from Costco and pushed aside the memory of Marley telling me I looked like a suburban mom going to the gym when I wore the same jacket/legging combo last week. It really shouldn’t matter what I wear to a concert on the beach. I’m 50 (alright, 51, whatever). Who cares? It’s not like I’m hanging out backstage with the band. It’s just… when I’m at a concert I feel young and free which is harder to do when you’re dressed like a suburban mom.

Kirkland Signature Ladies Active Jacket
How to Look Like a Suburban Mom 101 (also, I don’t know why Costco cut off this poor woman’s head)

When I got to my girlfriend’s she was wearing leggings. And of course she looked cute. Not like a suburban mom at all. (Maybe because she isn’t one.) I decided to change into mine. Fuck it. Be comfortable. I reminded myself nobody cares what I’m wearing.

When we got to the beach it was actually kind of hot so we changed into our shorts in the car. As we walked into the show I saw a guy on his cellphone who looked exactly like Jake Owen. As we passed him, I mentioned it to Simmah. She said she didn’t see him. She’s the one who really loves Jake Owen, so if it was him she would have noticed. Plus that’s crazy – he wouldn’t be in the parking lot at his own show.

We’d picked up lunch on the way, but since there was no outside food or drink allowed, we sat outside the entrance to finish our sodas (or rather the Costco trailer trash margaritas we’d poured into our soda cups).

Kirkland-pre-made-margarita
One bottle of Costco pre-made margaritas costs less than one overpriced under-poured concert cocktail. It’s my friends’ and my go-to drink of choice.

As we were sitting there the dude I saw on the phone walked onto the tour bus.

Do you understand what just happened? It was Jake Owen.

So, not only did I have a chance of getting a selfie with Jake Owen at his own concert in the parking lot, I had a chance to get a selfie with Jake Owen at his own concert in the parking lot before my hair frizzed and I started piling on the mom clothes and still looked cute. But I blew it. I suck.

We went into the show. There was a huge stage with an open pit to stand in with a designated area for beach chairs behind it. In the back there were vendors, a smaller covered stage, and a mechanical bull riding pen. We set down our chairs, settled in for the day. I felt a little sorry for Jake hiding on that tour bus all day. The weather was perfect. The people watching was prime, so I took in the fashion show. Perfect-bodied twenty-somethings in thong bikinis. Daisy Dukes and cowboy boots (yes, cowboy boots – on the beach). Cute little rompers. (Who wears a romper to a nine hour show when your only bathroom option is an outhouse?)

Then, I saw these shoes.

inappropriate shoes
Seriously, WTF? Who wears shoes like this to the beach? I understand it’s a concert. But, HELLO! Beach!

Did they know where they were going? A concert, yes, but we were on the beach! That was when I laughed at myself. Who cares what I was wearing? The weather was beautiful, the music was great, I was spending the day with one of my best friends and we had a day drinking margarita buzz. Everything was perfect.

Around 6:00 it started to cool down. We changed back into our leggings. (Yes, in the outhouses, which were plentiful and surprisingly not that gross.) I put on my mom jacket. I even traded my flip flops for tennis shoes because my foot was flaring up again. You know what? I didn’t care.

We headed over to the pit before Jake took the stage. (And really, when you’re smashed in with all those people nobody can see what you’re wearing anyway.) When Jake took the stage I sang along.

“Never gonna grow up (Whoa-oh)
Never gonna slow down (Whoa-oh)
We were shinin’ like lighters in the dark
In the middle of a rock show (Whoa-oh)”

Oh yes. Yes, I was.

My Perfect Week

During a perfect week I wash my hair on Sundays and Wednesdays so I only have to take the time to blow dry my hair once during the work week. Please don’t confuse this with I only shower on Sundays and Wednesdays. (I actually wouldn’t mind that, but my co-workers might.) That’s what shower caps are for. Yes, my hair is a disaster on Saturdays and spends all day in a frizzy mess of a ponytail. Or under a hat. But I’m a forty-nine year old suburbanite. We don’t go out most Saturday nights.

On a typical week something goes awry in my allowable-hair-dirtiness plan and I end up washing my hair twice during the work week making my hair look better, but also making me late(r than usual) to work.

On a perfect week I start my Sunday morning with a four mile run at 7:30 completed in forty-four minutes. (Hey, I just started running a year ago. And I’m old. And not racing anybody. So shut up about how slow I am!) Then I have coffee with my friends around a fire pit at Stonehaus. (Who yes, if you must know all finished before me. Even the ones who ran five miles.) I get up at five o’clock to write even on Sundays so I have plenty of time to pack some Greek yogurt (the delicious full-fat kind) and fruit or put some oatmeal and peanut butter in a thermos to take with me for breakfast after the run. (Yes, I take my own breakfast to a coffee house. Shhh! I’m on a budget!)

On a typical week I “sleep in” until six, waste time on Facebook, lose track of time and rush out the door at 7:26, with no time to make breakfast and making my friends wait in the cold for me to arrive so I can run behind them.

On a perfect week I clean my room on Sundays, do all my laundry, put it all away, and pick out my  outfits for the week including accessories.

lay-out-clothes-the-night-before-work

 

On a typical week I manage to do all my laundry, but don’f fold it until nine o’clock while we’re watching The Walking Dead, and put it in a laundry basket where it will remain (in the den) until Tuesday, okay Wednesday Friday. I kind of visualize in my head what I’ll wear that week (and still change 2-3 times each morning before putting the original outfit back on). My room remains a mess for another week.

During a perfect week I will go to Trader Joe’s and Costco on Sunday, plan my meals for the week, and not have to return to the store until the following Sunday.

On a typical week we will run out of milk on Tuesday morning. Wednesday night if I buy two. And that Tuesday or Wednesday milk-run will likely be the second time since my Sunday shopping trips that I have to run back to Trader Joe’s to pick up something I forgot. I will probably go a minimum of two more times until the following Sunday. (Sometimes those two times will happen on the same day.)

During a perfect week I will get my shopping done early so I have time to do some cooking for the week. I’ll cook some ground turkey and quinoa and roast some vegetables then chop them up small with my Pampered Chef food chopper and mix it all together. Then I’ll put the mixture into five containers, the turkey and quinoa weighed and measured for the appropriate protein to carb ratio (20g protein, 30g carbs), ready for grab-and-go lunches for the week. As I’m preparing my lunches I’ll also make a nice Sunday dinner, and put together some gringo enchiladas (only gringos use cream cheese and flour tortillas for enchiladas) or a meatloaf to pop into the oven one night during the week.

green-chile-enchiladas
Yes, I stole this photo from Pinterest. You can get the photo credit and recipe for these yummy enchiladas for gringos here.

On a typical week I don’t make it to the market until 4:00 when it’s overcrowded and they are out of at least one of the things I want the most. I get home much too late to make my turkey quinoa mash, but at least I managed to buy broccoli slaw and kale to mix together for salads that will be made in the morning instead of the night before, making me late(r) and  will surely get stuck in my teeth (which is awesome because I usually eat lunch at my desk). I also remember that gringo enchiladas are too fattening and that my kids hate meatloaf. (Even though, trust me, my meatloaf recipe, which is actually my Uncle John’s meatloaf recipe, is the bomb. I will have to post it one day.)

During a perfect week I will pop out of bed every morning at the first sound of my 5AM alarm, pour myself a cup of coffee that has already been brewed because it was set up the night before and I will write.

But y’all know I never have perfect weeks don’t you?

Welcome to This Wonderful World

On Saturday morning I woke up at about 6:45, which was equal parts much too early and much too late. I walked the dog, came home and woke up Marley who surprisingly got up without the usual teenage grumble and we were out the door by 8:25 headed to my mom’s house. I was meeting my brother there, who was going to fix the ignition coil on my car and Marley and my mom were going to watch the Great Gatsby for the thousandth time because apparently you can never get enough Leonardo DiCaprio. (I don’t quite know how to break it to Marley that he’s pushing 40.)

I had planned on coercing my mom to do a Costco run with me (we were out of everything – surely she had to be out of everything too). I also had to pick up a few things at Target, maybe Bed Bath & Beyond. Then I’d head home and cheat on my hairdresser (again) with some long overdue root maintenance before meeting my girlfriends for a 6:00 dinner and then a concert at The Canyon Club.

But when I got to my mother’s my brother wasn’t there. I was slightly annoyed because I had rushed and was late (the story of my life) and had forgotten my Costco list and now wished I’d turned around to get it.

“Where’s Richard?” I asked my mom as I walked in.

“He’s at the hospital,” she answered.

And a smile spread across my face.

My little brother was about to become a grandfather.

“Did she have him?” I asked.

“Not yet,” my mom told me.

“Can we go to the hospital, Mom?” Marley asked me.

It was very considerate of my niece to have her baby on a Saturday so we could all be there. I was hoping for a speedy labor (for her comfort of course and not because I was rudely and selfishly thinking of my month-long plans with some girlfriends that I rarely get to see). She was only at four centimeters so we took our time and made eggs for breakfast; lingered a bit. I helped my mom clean up and made a new Costco list.

We headed over to the hospital a little after ten. My niece was doing great and we plopped down next to her boyfriend, my brother, his girlfriend. and my younger niece ready to meet the newest member of our family. At 11:30 Ashley was only at five centimeters and everyone was hungry so my mom and I decided to go to Costco and pick up a couple pizzas while we were there. My list was long, but we barreled through Costco knowing that the baby wouldn’t be coming for hours, but still nervous that we’d miss it if we took too long. We dropped the groceries off at my house, dumping them on the kitchen table and into the fridge (we’d worry about separating them later), gave Dave a couple slices of pizza and rushed back to the hospital. My older niece had joined the group and the pizzas (now warmish rather than hot) were devoured.

At 2:20, Ashley was moving steadily, but slowly. I took a risk and headed home to get ready for my night out, stopping for hair mascara along the way, taking my cheating on my hairdresser to a new low. At 3:40 my mom texted me 9 1/2 maybe 20 minutes. 30 minutes.

I unplugged my flat iron and flew out the door.  On my way I texted back. I made it to the hospital in 20 minutes flat.

He still wasn’t quite ready to come out yet. Wombs are warm and cozy places. The nurse came back in the room to check her at 5:00. “The baby’s coming,” she said as she went to call the doctor. Ashley’s boyfriend and her two sisters stayed with her. And even though she left our earth way too soon, I know the girls’ mother was there too. Marley sat on the floor outside the room. The rest of us headed to the waiting area down the hall.

A little while later Marley texted me The baby is out and we rushed back down the hall.

“How do you know the baby is out?” I asked as the door was still shut. “Did someone come out?”

“No, I can hear him crying,” she said and we all pressed our ears to the door.

At 5:37 PM I became a great-aunt. He was 7 pounds 7 ounces and perfect. Mama and baby were both doing fine.

newborn
Welcome to the world little man!

 

We congratulated the proud parents and took turns holding our new little treasure. We called and texted family far away. We Instagrammed. We Facebooked. We were in awe and in love with our new little family member.

About an hour later I drove my mom home and left Marley there. I’d missed dinner with my friends, but still had time to meet them at the club. As I was driving home to change I thought about Ashley and her new little family. She is so young – just one year out of high school, two weeks away from nineteen. Yeah, her life’s going to be hard. Motherhood is so damn hard.

But also so very wonderful. Quite possibly the most wonderful thing in the world. They are surrounded by love. They’ll be okay.

 

 

 

 

 

The First Day of my 49th Year

On the first day of my 49th year I woke up early like I always do. But I did not write. I was not productive. Sometimes I wonder why I get up before the sun only to be lazy. But because it was my birthday I allowed myself the indulgence of Facebook and Pinterest without guilt.

At seven o’clock I went for a three mile run. It’s been a while since I’ve run that far. I never stopped to walk, but it was hard. Really hard. The last minute was especially brutal. I end my run on an uphill. I felt dizzy. Like I was going to vomit. I’m pretty sure that’s not what they mean by the term “runner’s high” but if it is then I want no part of it.

You might wonder why I chose to run on my birthday if I hate it so much.  I had friends coming over that night for appetizers and wine and knew I’d be eating a lot of cheese. A lot of cheese. Call it preventative maintenance.

I treated myself to a pedicure -after a shower of course- and then drove to The George Michael Salon in Beverly Hills. (No relation to 80’s pop star/90’s park bathroom lurker.) I’d won a long hair treatment worth $195 from a #Fabchat session on Twitter and my birthday was the perfect day to treat myself to such a luxury as my hair was definitely in desperate need of a little TLC.

Hair before George Michael Hair treatment
This hair is in some desperate need of a little TLC. (BTW – can you tell I’m not very good at selfies?)

 

Salon owner, Jessie Martinez, definitely gave me that. She washed my hair and put on an intense moisturizing treatment and then sat me on a comfy couch for an hour with a heating cap on my head. I sat and read my new book for an hour. (Talk about indulgent!)

Afterwards she washed my hair and set it in big rollers and I sat under a hairdryer that looked like it came out of the Jetson’s for another 45 minutes and read some more. Oh yes, it was a very good day indeed.

hair dryer
It looks like something Jane Jetson would wear doesn’t it?

 

The result was smooth, gorgeous hair without the harmful chemicals of some other hair treatments (ahem, I’m talking to you Brazilian) or the drying and damaging effects of a blowout.

I left the George Michael hair salon looking like this:

Hair-after-george-michael-hair-treatment
Please ignore my lack of make-up and focus on my gorgeous hair!

Jessie Martinez might just be my new best friend.

I stopped by Costco on my way home and battled the Father’s Day shoppers to pick up my favorite cheap wine -only the best for my friends- and returned home to  a clean house (best birthday present ever) and our Happy Birthday sign on the wall. (We have a Happy Birthday sign that I hang for everyone’s birthday every year, but mentioned last year that it never gets hung for me.) I’m not sure what made my heart sing more – the freshly vacuumed carpet or the sign, but the combination made me so happy that I didn’t even get crabby when I saw the dust rag carelessly left in the corner on the living room. (Isn’t that what you do when you’re done dusting – just drop the dust rag at the bottom of the last thing dusted?)

I made fried olives, a recipe that I found here, and have been wanting to try for a year. They did not disappoint. I set up for the party, put on a dress that I haven’t been able to fit into for years, and welcomed my closest friends into my home.

Fired-olives
Mmmm fried olives – delish!

The men went into one room and the women went into another. We drank wine. We laughed. We ate a lot of cheese. My friend Arlyne baked me a carrot cake from scratch. It was heavenly.

As birthdays go, it wasn’t anything grand, but it was quite wonderful.

Every day should be filled with recognizing the joy of simple pleasures…

Shirking off early-morning productivity to “catch up” on Facebook.

Feeling strong (albeit vomity) after a hard workout.

Taking the time to pamper oneself.

Reveling in the serene beauty of a clean house.

Enjoying time spent with close friends.

Indulging (okay, over-indulging) in wine and cheese.

The first day of my 49th year? No, it may not have been grand, but it was a damn fine day indeed.

A Day in my Rockstar Life

I was reading my girl Mama Kat (as I tend to do) and was intrigued by a writing prompt link up she had last week. The prompt was to take a picture every hour to document your day.

Well, as you have probably guessed, my life is pretty glamorous. I was going to do a weekday “day in the life” post, but thought you might be too insanely jealous to look at this eight times on repeat.

reception-desk
Put this on repeat for 8 hours and like me, you’ll be living the dream!

I know, rockstar life right?

So I decided to document Sunday. I will be honest and admit that this past Sunday was a bit busier than most. I mean, it was Emmy night after all. So sit back, relax, grab a cup of coffee, scroll down at all of the pretty cell phone pictures and try your hardest not to wish you were me…

6:00 Beep Beep Beep. That’s the sound of my alarm going off. Yes, at six. It usually goes off at 5:00 (yes, even on Sunday) because I feel unbalanced if I don’t get some “me time” in the morning, but I went to bed at midnight so I needed the extra hour of beauty sleep!

(Oh, and if you’re wondering why I went to be so late it’s because I already told you – I live the glamorous rockstar life – I was at a cross country meet 75 miles away where Chandler ran a race at 9:15 PM! See – I told you, you’d be jealous!)

mom-blogger-desk
Just me, my computer and creamy coffee – aaahhhh!

7:00 I took my dog Rocky for his morning walk to the park and basked in the beauty of Ladyface Mountain.

shepard-lab-mix
My cute and crazy dog.
Ladyface Mountain
Lovely Ladyface

8:00 I ran 4 miles with the run club at my gym. That’s right – 4 MILES! And I hated every single solitary step.

pink running shoes
I cannot tell you how many times I tried to take this photo so my ankles did not look fat. (I obviously failed!)

9:00 The only reason I run is so I can hang out and have coffee with my friends afterward. Although I don’t actually drink coffee as I’ve already caffeined up earlier and what kind of friends make you do something you hate three times a week? I should return the favor by posting their un-make-uped-sweaty-post-running pictures. But I won’t because I actually know how to treat people! We sat outside of Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf because we smelled bad and were afraid we might get kicked out. (Or maybe that’s just me.)

breakfast collage
I swear I brought the donuts home to my family (I had to buy them – they were just too cute) I did, however, inhale the Stonyfield yogurt!

10:00 I had to rush home to get Marley ready for church, a day at her friends, and then a Bat Mitzvah. But first I had to stop at Cost Plus. I mean, I have my priorities.

wine-sale
A girl’s gotta do what a girls gotta do!

11:00 I stretched while making a few phone calls, took a shower and gave in and washed my hair even though I really didn’t have enough time to dry it properly because I hadn’t washed it since Thursday (and have worked out twice since), obsessed about the inelasticity  of my skin as I looked in the mirror when I dried my hair, and started the weekend’s laundry.

laundry
Remember, I warned you how jealous you’d be of my rockstar life. So much fun and it isn’t even noon yet!

12:00 I rushed out the door to meet my mom at Costco. Because I was in a rush and didn’t want to make her wait I grabbed the first pair of shoes I saw, which were black even though I was wearing a brown belt. The shoes were flip flops, but still, I think the mismatch is only slightly less offensive than how I smelled at Coffee Bean two hours earlier.

costco-groceries
This should last about a week.

1:30 Got home, from Costco and heard the dryer going and panicked. On the one hand it was fantastic that Chandler does his own laundry, on the other it means he put my clothes in the dryer and my clothes don’t go in the dryer. (Well they do, but only for 10 minutes on low and then I hang them. And yes, I am aware that I am a freak. Thank you.) Fortunately he had just thrown them in, so melt down over teenage son being responsible was averted. I then ate some tuna salad while putting away groceries, realized running makes you really sore and rolled on the foam roller and then went into the bathroom and saw Dave brushing his teeth. It occurred to me that there was a chance I might have forgotten to brush my teeth in the morning. (Like a 99.9% chance.) So, it turns out mismatched accessories and breakfasting post-running/pre-showering are not my greatest offenses of the day.

meal-prep
Getting ready for some meal prep.

2:00 Put another load of laundry in the washer, hung a load outside to dry and then ran to Trader Joe’s for even more groceries.

Trader-Joes
My happy place.

3:00 I turned on the Emmy’s Red Carpet, but had to do some meal prep for the week and make a meal for a friend who just had surgery, so I cooked and took notes on fashion at the same time. Not happy about having my attention taken away from my beloved Red Carpet.

Sunday Meal Prep
Getting ready for the week.

4:00 More prepping. More cooking. More red carpet watching.

2013 Emmy Red Carpet Telecast
Yes, this really is our old school TV.

5:00 Sat down to fold laundry and watched beginning of Emmy’s while vegetables finished roasting. Then pressed record on the DVR and left to go to my mom’s house for dinner. (On Emmy night – I know!) Left the kitchen in a huge state of disaster to be dealt with when we returned.

messy kitchen
Yes, I actually walked out the door with my kitchen looking like this! (Notice laundry still hanging outside.)

6:00 Relaxed and had dinner with my family. It was lovely.

dinner al fresco
Dinner al fresco

7:30 When I was offered dessert for once I said yes. It tasted like heaven.

vanilla-ice-cream-with-hot-fudge
Yum!

8:00 Came home, cleaned disaster of a kitchen, and put away hanging laundry.

clean-dishes
To be put away tomorrow – don’t worry – I’ll sleep just fine with them right there! (I hope to put away the folded laundry in the den sometime before Tuesday.)

9:00 Kicked Dave and Chandler out of the den and sat down to finally watch the Emmy’s in peace. (Well, if peace means sitting on couch with laptop and typing away furiously while watching.)

10:00 Got distracted by a dress on a Target commercial I was trying to fast forward through and tried to look up dress on Target website. Struck out. Stupid Target – if you’re going to show a dress on a commercial please have it available for me to look at and not buy online!

Target.com
Just me, the Emmy’s and Target.com

10:45 Left the house to pick up Marley at Bat Mitzvah at 11:00 SHARP. (There was no school on Monday – staff development day.)  Dropped off Marley’s friend, came home and tumbled into bed next to sleeping husband for not nearly enough sleep.

car-dashboard
Time to get home and get to bed!

Woke up at 5:30 on Monday (again, slept in because I went to bed too late) and started rolling so I could do this for eight hours straight…

reception-desk

Now be honest – you are totally jealous of my rockstar life, right?

This is What Happens When You Call Someone Out in a Blog

Two weeks ago I wrote a blog about my birthday weekend and mentioned that I refused to get on stage during kickboxing because I didn’t like the way my ass looked in the workout pants I was wearing. I might have made a smart-allecky remark about Chris Stevenson not picking me up and placing me on stage against my will (as he is known to do) for fear of hurting his back (due to the size of my ass). I was trying to be self-deprecating, but Chris took it to mean that I was challenging his manhood and calling him old (which I would never do because he is at least 10 years younger than me and that would make me… nevermind)!

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Kick it Chris!

This past Saturday he motioned me up again. I did not want to go.

As much as I enjoy being the center of attention (what – a blogger that likes attention?!) kickboxing is a place I prefer to remain anonymous. I’m not very graceful and my kicks aren’t very high. I have to stop a lot to wipe off the incredible amount of sweat that is pouring down my face (I hate sweat on my face) and take a lot of water breaks. And of course the woman he had pulled onstage already was gorgeous and about two inches taller and 20 30 pounds skinnier than I am. That’s always fun to stand right next to. In front of everybody.

And saying my workout look is not my best look would be an understatement. Even before the sweat. I pull my hair into a messy ponytail that just looks sloppy instead of a messy ponytail that looks cute like other women seem to be able to achieve. And I hate the way I look without bangs, but I pull them back in a bobby pin and expose my gray roots and in-desperate-need-of-some-Botox forehead to the universe because the only thing worse than sweat on your face is wet sweaty bangs on your face.

And I wear baggy black yoga pants from Costco and drab deteriorating tank tops from Old Navy instead of the brightly colored Lululemon outfits that 90% of the other women at my gym tend to wear.

And don’t get me started on the sorry state of my middle age arms. Ugh.

But it was 95 degrees outside (at 9:30 AM) and when you are in a kickboxing class with 50 other people it gets really, really hot no matter how high you turn on the air in studio. It looked like I might be able to breathe a little bit better on stage. (And who knows, maybe my batwing triceps would be useful and actually fan the people standing behind me.)

And as lame as my kickboxing skills are (and for someone whose been kickboxing for about 14 years they’re pretty lame) – nobody really watches you when you’re on stage; they’re too busy watching themselves in the mirror. (Or is that just me?!) I couldn’t even tell you who was pulled up for the class I took three days before. (Except that she was probably skinny with a cute-messy ponytail and Lululemon clothes.)

So when Chris motioned me up to the stage this time I rolled my eyes and walked up there. I mean, I was afraid if I didn’t he might try picking me up, throw out his back and feel unmanly. And I didn’t want him feeling unmanly.

And you know what? I think I kind of rocked it.

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Rockin’ the stage at Stevenson Fitness

*Photo of Chris Stevenson on stage courtesy of www.stevensonfitness.com