Thursday, June 30, 2011

NaBloPoMo - Mission Complete!

I did it! 30 days, 30 posts. And some of them were done using the mail2blogger function from the road. I'm a little afraid of what my bill is going to look like with the international roaming fees but it was worth it! I learned a lot about my style and writing habits in this process and I can tell you that I'm probably not going to keep up daily posts. At least not until November...

Let's face it, if any of you were here every day you know that there was some filler in these here posts. However, I will aim for three posts a week. Two of them will be usual "day in the life" updates, because *I know* you want the scintillating details of the condition of my uterus and The Husband's sperm. As for the other one, I'd like to do something of an ongoing feature. I'd like the other post to be either:
  • Brutally honest product reviews; or 
  • Reader questions submitted by you
I can't decide what's more useful or interesting so I turn the floor over to you, dear readers. What do you think the weekly feature on Life with a Parasite should be?


Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Was that absolutely necessary?

I like this hotel. It's cheap, it's clean, it's transit accessible, breakfast is free and so is the internet. I have to use a LAN cable though... How quaint! We got a suite, which is not nearly as luxurious as it sounds. It does mean that we can put The Parasite to bed at sundown and do grownup stuff in the other room.

This IS a hotel, so naturally "grownup stuff" means watching pr0n and having sex. Oh, quit clutching your pearls. I've talked openly about The Husband's sperm collection, is this REALLY a surprise? Now I don't love pr0n, not because I feel so sorry for those poor, objectified creatures - most of whom are stupid like a fox - I just don't have much use for it. I'm tactile, visual doesn't do much to float my boat if you know what I mean, and I think you do. However, it makes The Husband happy and a happy husband = a happy wife.

There are things about pr0n that I understand and accept, even if they're ridiculous. Leaving the high heels on? It's meant to shape the legs. Got it. The terrible hair? Well, not everybody gets the A grade payscale, and I can appreciate how difficult it is to keep up with root touch-ups when you've got to film 100+ scenes this month to make rent. Why are the ladies so much hotter than the dudes? Because neither sex is watching straight pr0n for the dudes. If you want to see hot men, you have to watch gay pr0n.

But the spitting? What the fuck is up with the spitting?

Sure in caveman times saliva might have been an appropriate substitute for lube, but we do not live in caveman times! We have vastly superior synthetic substances to keep things from bursting into flames. By the 8th or 10th position change, it's time to bring in some reinforcements. It's OK, take a break. It's not like that was the ONLY take you were going to shoot that day. There's no need to bring a loogie to the party - particularly when you worked so hard to hork that thing up. Mmmmmm, the sound a cat clearing a hairball. Sexy!

I wonder if a sternly worded letter writing campaign would do anything to quell this vile practice? I have difficulty taking myself seriously when thinking about addressing a letter to Dear Mr. Butts,...

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

It's fun when you're having fun

I used to see families traveling together and wonder why on God's green earth anyone would want to do that to themselves. Naturally this was a pre-kid sentiment. Packing up all the crap necessary to keep a small child fed, clothed, watered and entertained for a few hours? Crazy! Why not just stay home?

Yesterday we were up and ready on the 9:00 shuttle to the subway and on to the New England Aquarium. We had been promising The Parasite a visit with the fishies for weeks and it finally happened. When she laid eyes on those penguins on our way in the door, we knew that all the time spent getting here was totally worth it. She was beaming ear to ear the whole time. We bought her a stuffed penguin that we may be able to pry out of her hands some day, but today is not that day. Lunch on a patio by the wharf completed the adventure before heading back to the hotel for nap time.

Nothing makes me happier than seeing that little face light up. Having time away from the "stuff" that needs to be done every day, time to just be us and laugh and play, is what makes working so hard worth the effort. I used to worry that once we had a child our travels were over. Now I know it just means you have a few more bags, and a lot more giggles. The rest of my bunch will be up soon and we'll be on our way for today's adventures. I can't wait to see the smiles that today will bring.

Monday, June 27, 2011

Last Night

Bunghole Liquors by jwarrender
Bunghole Liquors, a photo by jwarrender on Flickr.
We went off in search of alcoholic beverages last night and were unsuccessful. How is that even possible? No store that sell booze is open past 6:00 in this town. Shit! If I wanted Draconian rules surrounding the sale of alcohol I could have just stayed home.

Luckily in a couple of days we will head to Salem where we can visit somewhere I have been before. That's why it's always good to take pictures in your travels.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Really, General Mills?

We did it! We safely navigated the minefield of car travel with a small child for an extended period of time. We're in the hotel at our destination where The Parasite is having her afternoon nap. And we couldn't have done it without Cheerios. Ever been in a car with a toddler on the brink of a complete meltdown? That shit is LOUD. But you can't scream when your mouth is full of yummy, crunchy O-shaped cereal! Or at least it makes it more difficult. They serve as a muffler, really.

There is a commercial with a cute little boy sitting on his daddy's lap, reaching over his own Cheerios to steal his dad's and it's just so wholesome. Just like Cheerios! They're like the feelgood snack of the decade!

So you can imagine my disappointment when I saw CHOCOLATE CHEERIOS in my grocery store. Really, General Mills? You decided what was really necessary was another sugar-laden, shitty cereal on our shelves? You thought the Cheerios name could lend itself to that particular cause? You couldn't even give it another brand name? You've already got 12 brands to market and manage, what's one more? I'm really disappointed in you!

Also, person who left your discarded spoon and napkin in the display? You are gross!

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Did I forget anything?

Hi, and welcome to my house at Stupid O'Clock the morning! Very soon we'll be heading out on the grand adventure that is a long road trip with a toddler. I told you I like to plan, right? This is what happens when slightly (HA!) neurotic meets VERY organized. So what does planning gone wild look like anyway?
  1. Water wings, to be left in the diaper bag "just in case"
  2. Floatie-thing, like water wings only bigger
  3. Beach sun shelter, take it out of the bag and give it a shake *poof* instant shade!
  4. Little People lunchbox house, includes little people and furniture in one portable container 
  5. Unsweetened applesauce
  6. 3 cups dry Cheerios
  7. 3 cups Goldfish crackers
  8. Dora
  9. Boots 
  10. Diego*
  11. Mini apple juice boxes (x12) to be mixed 50/50 with water
  12. Assorted cutlery
  13. Individually wrapped 4pks of cracker
  14. Fruit cups
  15. Kleenex
  16. Disinfecting wipes
  17. Peanut butter
  18. Paper towel
  19. Starbucks Breakfast Blend (OK, that's for me)
  20. Elmo Fun Pack - Colouring and activity books, stickers and washable crayons
  21. Cup holder shaped container of Wet Wipes
  22. Extra diaper wipes
  23. Overnight pull ups, because while I am prepared to do A LOT of laundry at home for my cloth-diapered, 98% potty-trained kid, I'm a little pickier on the road.
Right now you're thinking "Well, that seems reasonable", aren't you? Now let's review what's not pictured:
  • Umbrella stroller that resides in the car permanently
  • Disney Princess travel potty - I've mentioned my feelings about the Disney Princess movement. Somehow, I'm OK with her pissing all over the princesses. Also? $7.
  • Widemouth mason jar to collect anything deposited in said potty until we reach an appropriate receptacle. Because human waste at the side of the road is just gross. Hence the disinfectant wipes.
  • Clothes, including umpteen changes of very small underwear, because accidents happen
  • Toiletries, including sunscreen and specialty shampoo and conditioner for the finest of baby fine hair
  • Toddler bedding and the Mickey and Teddy Bear she sleeps with every night and excitedly brings to "Mommy Daddy bed" every weekend
  • 2 pacifiers (Yes, she still sleeps with a pacifier. Yes, I know I'm a terrible mother and I'm going to hell)
  • Cooler bag items: Milk, yogurt, lunch meat, cheeses slices and tortillas (for sandwiches), various fresh fruits including blueberries, which are probably the best car snack EVER!
  • 24 bottles of water, some of which are frozen to serve as the coolant in the cooler bag
  • Portable DVD player that attaches to the headrest
  • HEADPHONES!
  • Approximately 27 hours of Dora and Diego, with some Backyardigans and Tinker Bell thrown in for good measure
  • One 20GB Ipod loaded 50/50 with music the whole family can enjoy (*twitch*) and stuff The Husband and I can enjoy when she's asleep
  • Plastic bags in various sizes and shapes 
  • Diaper bag that is always stocked with emergency toys, snacks and changes of clothes
  • Sippy cups, disposable plates, straws, plastic spoons, napkins
  • Travel necessities: Passports, GPS, directions, laptop, keys, cash in the appropriate local currency, including small bills for toll booths, etc.
Oh, right. The Husband and I have some stuff in there too. You could tell me that you've noticed a critical item or two that I should have thought of myself, but then I might have to kill you. And now, it is 5:18 am. In   about 12 minutes I will try to transfer a sleeping child to the car and pray she stays asleep for at least another two hours. Wish me luck! I'll update from the road.


*She also has all of the Backyardigans, but I thought that might be overkill.

Friday, June 24, 2011

The Mayor has no Pride

The Pride parade is a pretty BFD here in the City of Toronto, and one of the largest tourist events of the year. The Mayor of Toronto has marched in the parade to show their support for the gay community every year for the last 16 years. Our newest Mayor, elected this past fall, will not be participating this year.

The gay community is profoundly offended by his decision, and I understand why. It IS a slap in the face. It IS shirking his responsibilities as the Mayor of a large and culturally diverse city. But what I'm most surprised about in all of this kafuffle is that people are surprised. Rob Ford's homophobic tendencies are well known. He's a racist motherfucker too. Don't look at me, I certainly didn't vote for him. Events supporting the gay community, cultural minorities and anything outside of watching football and drinking cheap draft beer are totally out of his depth.

Maybe people thought he'd stop being an asshole after his campaign? Like once elected he'd have some sort of epiphany and suddenly want to be one with his people. Am I expected to believe that people in this city are really that naive? Now he's got the power and you expect him to be less of a douche? That's just crazy talk!

Accept that it is what it is, and that what it is isn't really surprising. The Pride parade will carry on and everyone will have a great time without Rob Ford. Most of the attendees are from out of town so they won't even know who he is and therefore won't notice his absence. Consider it a blessing. I don't think we want the world to know we elected Peter Griffin.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Waiting to Exhhale

I just tried to add it up in my head and I think I have taken approximately 100 flights in my lifetime. Travel is my favourite hobby and they haven't figured out teleporting yet so it's really my only option if I want to go to far off lands. I know that modern air travel is very safe, statistically safer than the driving I do every single day. Got it!

My rational mind is completely aware that what I am about to tell you is ridiculous: I hate flying. It terrifies me every time we take off and again every time we land. It's not just my own flights that terrify me, flights of loved ones also give me the heebie-jeebies. So you can imagine the kind of day I was having yesterday. While The Husband was flying to the west side of the country, my mom was making her way back from the east coast. They were both in the air for the majority of the afternoon, and I spent most of it obsessively checking their flight statuses and national news outlets for signs of plane crashes.

Knowing this, The Husband texted me mere moments after his plane touched down because he knew any delay in hearing from him would cause me massive anxiety. Yes, I am a crazy person. Luckily he has learned to work around it.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Leaving on a jet plane

The Husband is leaving me. Oh, not forever - just for a few days. And it's not like attending his grandmother's funeral is going to be a rockin' good time away from the fam. In fact, he'll leave family that he actually likes (most of the time, I hope...) to see distant relatives who will pinch his cheeks and say "I haven't seen you since you were *this big*!" Every grown man loves to have his name and "teeny-weenie" in the same sentence.

I'll be holding down the fort with The Parasite, the kid who deliberately headbutted me so hard tonight, I would not be terribly surprised to find hairline fracture in my skull. I'm telling you they make them so cute at this age to keep parents from eating their young. At least I'll be able to drive to work for the next few days and go straight to pick her up after work. Driving is no faster than taking transit, but my car smells better than the subway.

I've completed the list and the shopping for the big road trip next week. Have I mentioned I likes me some lists? I'll post the list and the pictures to prove it when I'm done. And then you'll wonder how I manage to function every day when I have so much neurosis to carry around with me!

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Let the examination process BEGIN!

You'll be pleased to know The Husband's sperm count is just fine. I know he was because he took several opportunities to mention how awesome his swimmers are. We both endured a major bloodletting. They took 9 vials out of him, I was too busy trying not to pass out to count how many they took out of me. He has to provide one more sample for more detailed examination that I'll be the one to deliver the clinic and then his work here is done.

Me? I've got a lot more ground to cover. There is:

1. A diagnostic cycle, where I will show up for 5-10 consecutive days at 7:00 for a blood test and an ultrasound - and not the wand on the belly kind.
2. A sonohysteroscopy, where they fill my uterus with a glucose solution to check for scar tissue and blockages of the fallopian tubes and do another ultrasound. The doctor said it's "painless". Uh-huh. That's why the instructions advise a couple of preemptive Advils before the procedure.
3. A "Day 3" ultrasound to check for healthy egg follicle development at the beginning of the cycle.
4. Additional serum screenings to determine egg stores and how they're faring.

All of this will be completed before my follow up appointment on August 17th. Hurry up and wait!

Monday, June 20, 2011

Today's the day

The appointment at the fertility clinic is later this morning. I spent last evening filling out a fuckton of paperwork (yes, that is the technical term) and Whoa! is this guy ever going to know me and my lady bits well. I know it's his job and all but holy shit! There's not a lot of dignity involved in the business of making a baby when it doesn't all go as planned. OK, so there's not a lot of dignity involved in the making of a baby the old-fashioned way either, but it's a hell of a lot more fun.

I'm not the only one staring down a little indignity on a Monday morning. The Husband is still asleep, soon he'll wake up and get a cranky toddler ready for daycare. How do I know she'll be cranky? She's as much of a morning person as her mother. After enjoying a sexless Father's Day, he'll take things in hand to bring a specimen to the clinic. I do not recommend Googling anything to do with sperm collection. However I'm quick to point out that I'm sure he starts a number of his days off with some quality time alone with his thoughts. The only difference today is a time limit and cup.

Apparently they'll do a whole lot of testing at the outset to find out what we're dealing with so maybe by the time we get back from our trip they'll have an idea of what we're up against. Though we're just as likely to have appointments for more tests. Wish us luck!

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Happy Father's Day!

We're celebrating Father's Day for the third time. The Parasite lovingly said "It's your Mother's Day" to wake her daddy up. Apparently daycare makes more of a to-do for the mommies. Probably because they know we're the ones writing the cheques.

I made him his body weight in bacon for breakfast, and as per his request he's spending the afternoon smoking some ribs in the backyard. I'm very amused by the juxtaposition of the manly-man smoker in the sea of toys. I call this one "The Symbol of Virility" and if they ever have a gallery full of crappy cell phone photography, you'll be able to say you knew me when...

Our appointment with the fertility specialist is tomorrow and he needs to bring a specimen. Which means he doesn't get freaky sex as part of his Father's Day gift. Poor bastard! Some day the next kid will read this post and he/she will just about die of shame. And I will laugh, because why would you have kids if not to laugh at them?

Saturday, June 18, 2011

All by myself

The Husband and The Parasite are sleeping. The TV is off and there's a hot cup of coffee by my side. I suppose I should think about waking her up because her daily routine is going to get all messed up. But it's so rare that I actually have some peace and quiet, not to mention the house to myself.

Some might wonder why someone who enjoys peace and quiet would have children. It's a fair question, sometimes I ask it of myself. Oh, there's The Husband. Soon enough the house will fill with noise and I'll enjoy that just as much as the silence. Those ruckus makers are my people and they make this house a home.

Friday, June 17, 2011

I guess this is growing up

I spent what felt like forever on hold today to update the beneficiary information for one of my investment accounts. The Husband and I are drawing up our wills, because having a kid makes you think about such things, and it seems that account was missed in the mass change after the wedding. I've been meaning to make the change for months, I just needed a firm reminder.

Sadly, that reminder came in the form of The Husband's grandmother passing away yesterday. Granny was a sweet lady who was largely responsible for bringing The Husband's family to Canada, so in a way I owe her for my good fortune. I'll be flying solo for a few days as The Husband flies to the other side of the country for the funeral to remember her.

Remember when you were a little kid and you were pretty sure growing up meant that you could stay up all night and you didn't have to eat your Brussels sprouts and it would be all awesome, all the time? Instead it means funeral arrangements and fertility clinics and paying bills AND eating Brussels sprouts when that's all there is in the fridge.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Original Six FTW!

I have a confession to make, one that makes me unpopular in certain circles in my hometown - I am a Montreal Canadiens fan. I'd go so far as to call myself a Superfan given that I have traveled to Montreal for a game a number of times. I am also Canadian and the Vancouver Canucks have been billed as "Canada's Team" since the first round of the playoffs. One might think that I am disappointed by last night's Stanley Cup final.

Incorrect.

I am what is known as a hockey purist: I want the Habs to win. If the Habs are out, I want any other Original Six team to win. If there are no Original Six teams standing, I want any other Canadian team to win. If none of those are available, I might as well watch paint dry because I just don't give a shit. Last night the Boston Bruins (Original Six) handed the Vancouver Canucks (Canadian team) their asses. All is now right with the world.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Changing the things I can

As it turns out, life with a parasite can get a little busy. Whodathunkit? I try to eat well and exercise. I've got eating well pretty much down because while I seem to have no issue feeding myself crap, I won't feed nutritionally dubious food to my kid. I kept trying to find the time to exercise, I swear I did! Turns out spare time just isn't one of those things you find lying around next to your lost keys. You actually have to make time if you're going to get it done. My options are:

A) wait for time to magically find me while getting fatter; or
B) get off my ass and do something about it.

I've been doing Option A since I went back to work last spring and while that has garnered me a new wardrobe, it's not for the right reasons. I'm going to give Option B a whirl for a while and see if that gets me a new wardrobe for better reasons. I rode my bike to the local pool and swam laps for half an hour on Sunday. I am a teensy bit mad at myself for letting me get this out of shape. I used to be pretty darn good about being active several times a week and I worked with a trainer every week for three years. Apparently a few months is enough to undo THREE YEARS of hard work. It's enough to make you want to say fuck it to the whole working out thing.

Thankfully there are new studies commissioned every year to remind us that you have to watch your diet AND exercise to maintain a healthy weight. I can't tell you how surprised I am by that news. You'd think at some point someone might have mentioned that food intake and activity level are related to overall health. I'll be damned!! In fact, "It’s well established that the more meat you eat, the heavier you tend to be; similarly, the more fruit you eat, the lighter you tend to be."

Next they're going to tell me that a good night's sleep is key to feeling refreshed the next day and that texting while driving is dangerous!

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Very efficient

Timers make life easier. I have dramatically cut my utility bills by using a programmable thermostat to regulate the temperature. Sometimes that means I'll be working from home and thinking "Jesus, it's *cold/hot* in here..." and remember the thermostat is set to "Away" because I'm usually at work at that time of day. Then I get up and adjust the temperature and everything is A-OK.

Which is probably what somebody should have done here:
You might be having hard time seeing what's wrong with this picture, because it's hard to see sprinklers IN THE RAIN!

Monday, June 13, 2011

I am not a fan of....

I live in a big city. In exchange for a lot of the bank's money, we have a small house on the outskirts of downtown. There is one parking space and getting a getting a permit to park a second car, on the street, would require one or both of us performing sexual favours for a host of city officials. For the time being we've decided to be monogamous so we make do with one car. The Husband and I use it to ferry The Parasite back and forth to daycare (he drops off, I pick up) and we park at home and take public transit to and from work.

I am not a fan of the people on public transit. There are people everywhere who feel that cheap cologne is an acceptable substitute for bathing (it's not) or who crack their gum or cough without covering their mouths, but I'm talking about violations of Decent Human Being Code that are specific to mass transit. These might be perfectly nice people in other circumstances, but get them on the train and they turn into complete assholes. There's innumerable things that piss me off about the subway, but these are the biggest on my list of pet peeves.

Top 5 public transit assholes:
  1. The seat hogger, who feels their shopping haul is more entitled to a seat than the paying customers standing around them. These crafty little buggers are skilled at avoiding eye contact, especially when the elderly, the disabled or the very obviously pregnant are in their field of peripheral vision.
  2. The backpacker, who is unaware of how much their person is extended by their cargo and  always manage to whack a short person (that's me!) in the face.
  3. The pole dancers, who inexplicably want to make sure they maximize contact with subway surfaces by leaning on the poles others would like to hold on to. What the fuck? Do they have any idea how many different bodily fluids may be on that pole? Why on earth would you want any more of your body than absolutely necessary to touch that thing? (Yes I'm less germaphobic than I used to be, but you gotta' draw the line somewhere.)
  4. The "I'm just paying my fare" people, who ram past you in the turnstiles as you gather your change from buying tokens. Simple physics: Two pieces of solid matter cannot occupy the same space at the same time. I nailed one of them with a sharp elbow when they tried to do it while I was pregnant and I feel no guilt.
  5. The door stoppers, who just shared a platform with a crowd yet stop in the doorway, seemingly oblivious to the other people boarding the train behind them. My personal favourites are the ones who cluck and sigh as you brush against them making your way onto the train. Here's a tip: I wouldn't have to do that if you'd GET OUT OF THE FUCKING WAY!
If you see a little of yourself in any of these people, please know that I am silently plotting your death. One of these days I'm going to master telekinesis and you're totally screwed. On that happy note, I'm off to start my morning commute. Hope you're not in my way!

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Germaphobe

I used to be a germaphobe. I mean to the extent that I had a little travel hand sanitizer strapped to all of my purses and on road trips I would hold pee for so long I'd end up feeling sick, just to avoid using gas station bathrooms. Then I had a kid. After a few months of getting drooled on, spit up on and daily handling of another human being's fecal matter, a little dirt isn't such a BFD.

When she was about nine months old The Parasite crawled over to the cat food bowl and ate a piece before I could stop her. For a nanosecond I was horrified, and then I shrugged my shoulders and carried on with my day. The first time she had an honest-to-goodness throw up, it was down my bra and in my hair. I was too worried about her to care about vomit in my cleavage. There are some seriously terrible stories involving poo that I will spare you all. You're welcome. They say parenting isn't for the faint of heart, and they're absolutely right.

I took The Parasite for a haircut today, and to keep the tears at bay I promised her a trip to the park on the way home. Another mom was there with her toddler twins. The boys wanted a snack so their mom headed over to the trusty diaper bag to get them some cheesy things. But they couldn't dig in before she had dutifully cleaned their hands with hand sanitizer. And all I could think was "Damn, I'd rather The Parasite eat a few grains of sand than whatever is in that shit." Of course I didn't say that to her because the last thing a parent of toddler twins needs is yet another person telling them "UR DOIN IT WRONG", but I do feel like I have come a long, long way.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

A matter of taste

To say that I am a fan of music is a bit of an understatement. David Bowie, The Beatles and the Beastie Boys are my Holy Trinity of awesome, but my tastes are pretty eclectic. There is not a single genre that isn't represented in my collection at all, though some genres are more prevalent than others. If I had to pick a favourite album of all time, I couldn't - not even if you held a gun to my head. And even if you did scare me into giving an answer with that gun to my head, it'd out of date within a week. My "favourite" is entirely mood dependent.

I have always had a love of the written word and my love of music is just an extension of that - a love of poetry set to tunes that make the words resonate even more. On this point, The Husband and I disagree. To sum it up, his taste in music is... nonexistent. He feels that the voice is just another instrument, and in the case of say, Annie Lennox, he's right. But that's no excuse for the shit he subjects me to when he's listening to "music". Somehow I manage to love him anyway.

I was terrified that The Parasite was going to be her father's daughter in the musical realm because there is no way I could live with two of them. Luckily, she has taken to singing and has a deep and abiding need to get the words right. During my Mat Leave (which is a year here in the Great White North) we had theme days: Cuban Jazz; All Beatles, all the time; 70s punk; Rolling Stones Mondays; 0ne-Hit Wonders Wednesdays, etc. With any luck, she will develop actual taste and my ears will never be assaulted by the not-so-dulcet tones of whoever the equivalent of Justin Bieber is a decade from now. Hey, a girl can dream!

Friday, June 10, 2011

Help find Lauren Spierer

Lauren Spierer flyer. Please print, post, share on social med... on Twitpic

Changing your mind

NaBloPoMo Weekend Prompt: "Have you ever drastically changed your opinion of an author as you read their book? Become a fan? Lost your fan status?"

* See below
It should come as a surprise to precisely nobody that I was a big fan of Sex & the City before the movies. I still haven't seen the second one, I can't bring myself to do it. But during the series' run, I was a single gal' in the big city spending every penny I had left over after food and housing on martinis. I was totally Miranda, now complete with The Husband, The Parasite, and the move from downtown to the outskirts of downtown.


After falling in love with the series, I decided to buy Sex & the City, the book the series was based on by Candace Bushnell. I wanted to love it. I was expecting to add a funny, wicked, irreverent author to my reading list. To say that it wasn't very good would be a bit of an understatement. But I loved the show so much, I decided to try again with Four Blondes. It was even worse than my already lowered expectations could imagine. While I continued to love the show, I decided I was done with Bushnell's books. Apparently those scripts went through more polishing than Samantha's partner's knobs.

* Image from here: http://www.entertainmentwallpaper.com/images/desktops/movie/sex_and_the_city13.jpg

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Not August

When I first spoke to the fertility clinic and they assigned a date with his holiness in August, his office assistant told me they'd keep my name in case of a cancellation. And I thought "Uh-huh. Sure. I've heard THAT line before. I have tried to make dinner reservations at a decent restaurant on Saturday afternoon. You'll call me on the 8th of never."

As it turns out, they called me on the 8th of June. They have a cancellation and our appointment has been moved up to the 20th of THIS month. It looks like we'll be getting answers sooner and (hopefully!) will be on the way to growing the next kid sooner too. Which is good, because every time I look at The Parasite I think "Who is this giant kid? And what has she done with my baby?"

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

But you're not my friend...

I don't talk about work in my personal social media activities. I don't name my employer or prattle on about what I do for a living in anything other than vague terms. And that is because I like to keep my work life and my personal life as separate as I can. I mean, it's not matter of national security or anything, a Google search and five clicks would probably suss it out. And since I live and die by the guidelines, I'm intimately familiar with does and does not constitute an official company opinion, which the following tale does not. Because it's germane to the story I'll tell you that I work in Corporate Communications for a large financial services organization, and in that capacity I manage our social media presence.

Another department got the green light to launch a social media presence of their own which is separate from the pieces that I manage, but as the √úbermensch of all things internet, I had to be involved for a Comms review. To view the page before its official launch, I had to use my personal Facebook account (from home no less, because even the √úbermensch can't access Facebook from behind our firewalls) to add someone as a friend.

And now the implementation phase is over... I don't care to know what's up in this person's life and I don't care to share what's up in my life with them. So now I have to "Unfriend" and it's giving me anxiety. Maybe she'll be relieved that I'm making the first move. Or maybe she'll be offended because she likes to have a robust friend list and I prefer to keep things to my *actual* friends. Either way, I'll be making the statement that I said and heard altogether too many times in the playground: "I'm not your friend anymore."

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Yuppie Survival Guide - Tiny Bubbles

You've no doubt heard the expression "Champagne tastes, draft beer budget" and that's sort of true here. Sure, that draft beer is usually some snotty import or dreadfully pretentious microbrew, but whatever. I love my snob beer and I make no apologies for it. Luckily The Husband decided to start making his own beer as a hobby and after a few months of trial and error, we have some mighty tasty brews at the end of a long day. But once in a while, I still like the tiny bubbles. What's a girl trying to save up for her next family vacation to do?

I have yet to find an inexpensive champagne that's not cheap, and cheap is unforgivable. However, champagne refers to a very specific kind of bubbles from a very specific part of France. Other countries well known for wine (love you Italy!) make their own bubbles that are much less expensive than their French cousins and in many cases taste just as good or better. Sure, there's some shitty ones out there (*cough*yellow tail*cough*) but I've had champagnes that could peel paint too.

We're particularly taken with the Proseccos of Italy, though yesterday's "Thank God Monday is over!" selection was a Cava from Spain. We like to crack open a bottle and chill in the backyard once The Parasite is off to bed for the night. Not too sweet and not too dry, it's a treat that seems decadent but for less than $15. I highly recommend these laid back cousins for an excuse to break out the ever-so-elegant champagne glasses. It makes you feel so much better about the tiny peanut butter hand print you noticed on your pants - halfway through the day.

Monday, June 6, 2011

How do you start your day?

I wake up on Monday mornings to the sound of my alarm clock and hit snooze, tossing the covers over my head before eventually willing myself out of bed so I don't, you know, get fired or anything. I hear they get pretty cranky when you don't show up for work. But before I can toddle my cranky, pre-caffeinated ass off to the shower to start the day, I have a date with my BBT thermometer.

Once we start treatment at the fertility clinic, every morning I'm going have a date with my BBT thermometer and my telephone so I can call the clinic with my results. I'll also have the pleasure of sharing the details of my cervical mucus and my sex life with the auto prompter on the other end of the line. Isn't babymaking romantic?

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Yuppie Survival Guide - Power Failure Edition

I... am not a morning person. My need for coffee to become fully human is well documented. On the way down the stairs with The Parasite yesterday morning, there was the telltale *bzzzzzzt* of all the appliances in the house shutting off. First thought: Shit. How am I going to make coffee? Second thought: I wonder if the power is also out at the Starbucks down the street? (It was.) Third thought: I should probably keep an eye on the kid as she makes her way down the stairs IN THE DARK... Clearly there is no issue with my ability to prioritize.

Now I could have tried to operate the car in a pre-caffeinated state to go find a place where the lights were on and therefore coffee would be available, but that would be dangerous to myself and the general public. Instead, I improvised and took pictures of it for your benefit. You're welcome. I'm a modern day lady version of MacGyver, folks.

1. Use a lighter to get the stove going with a pot of water. Pardon the dirty stove top, I'm really quite lazy. Under ordinary circumstances I would have cleaned it before posting pictures but HI! pre-caffeinated state:














2. Pour hot water into the thingie over the pot. Wait for drips for entirely too long before realizing it's spring loaded. Say fuck a lot as you realize you're going to have to hold the thing ever so gingerly over the pot to avoid burning yourself while you top it up with hot water and wait for it to run through before adding more:














3. Employ the double-boiler method to keep the coffee (somewhat) warm:














4. ENJOY!

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Mommy Daddy Time

You know who I'm a really big fan of? The Husband. He's awesome. He's a great partner and a great dad and he puts up with my shit. Sure he does stuff that drives me nuts but I'm sure it's mutual and when the chips are down there is NOBODY I would rather have by my side. Life gets busy. We've got two full time jobs and a wonderful child that we're committed to raising as partners. We've got the stress of working on the next one and an endless stream of stuff that needs to get done to manage a home.

It's easy to get bogged down in the drudgery. To forget in the cycle of "Get up, get ready, go to work, pick up the kid, make the dinner, do the dishes, bathe the kid, put her to bed, do the laundry, pay the bills, update your blog for NaBloPoMo ;), floss, set the alarm, go to bed" that you're not just a mom, you're a wife. There's someone in this with you, and your relationship with him needs a little maintenance too.

And THAT is why we're lucky to have a reliable babysitter on a Saturday night so that The Husband and I get the hell out of Dodge and spend a night being just us again. We'll probably spend most of the night talking about The Parasite and missing her and I'll worry to a freakish extent and he will talk me off the ledge. Because that's what he does. And that's why I love him.

Friday, June 3, 2011

By any means necessary - Final thoughts

I gave a lot of thought to the rest of the questions raised in The Dollars and $ense of Family Building, but I'm not far enough down this long and winding road to know the answers. For example, right now I'd say I won't consider ART in another country for any reason, financial or not, but I'm not there yet. I also swore I'd never breastfeed past a year or let my toilet-trained kid use a pacifier to sleep at night and those words were not very tasty.

I do know that any lengths we go to for our next child will be worth it. "They" say you have no idea how much you will love these little people, how much they will change you and it sounds like a hyperbole. It's not. Before The Parasite, I had no idea that there would be someone on this earth I would literally give my heart to if she needed it. We're going to make her a big sister, by any means necessary.

Visit Write Mind Open Heart for more perspectives on the Dollars and $ense of Family Building and to add your own link to the blog hop by June 21, should you want to contribute your thoughts.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

I'm a fan of summer TV

It's very lowbrow these days to admit that you like TV, but I do. In particular I like summer TV. I like the usual suspects Breaking Bad , Weeds and Mad Men. But the one I'm mostly looking forward to is the return of True Blood. Yes, it's campy and there's some serious moments of fromage, but there's Alexander Skarsgard who more than makes up for it. I spend most of the summer thinking about doing dirty, dirty things with that man. I'm pretty sure The Husband has nothing to worry about but just in case he's totally on my Famous Five list.

However, when I say I'm a fan of summer TV I mean that I like to watch it. I don't mean that I like to participate in forums or write fanfic. If I miss an episode or six I catch them later. It's not like the plots are so deep that I'm left completely out of the loop. I don't have conversations with The Husband or my  friends that revolve around TV. If the satellite is down I always manage to find something else to do.

Hmmm... Maybe I'm just really a fan of Alexander Skarsgard...

Note: Image now removed due to popularity with bots, was downloaded from http://justjared.buzznet.com/headlines/2009/11/alexander-skarsgard-sexiest-bad-boy.jpg

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

NaBloPoMo

Alright NaBloPoMo, it’s ON! A post a day for 30 days using "Fan" as a theme. Shit. I suddenly feel like I’m in grade school writing an essay on how I spent my summer vacation. My summer vacations were never interesting.

Fans keep us cool in the summer, but it’s also a fan that blows hot air through your house in the winter. I like fans.

The End.

Over the course of June I’ll give some thought to what fandom means to me and I’ll finish off my thoughts on the Dollars and $ense of family building. I’ll also be taking a road trip with The Husband and The Parasite at the end of the month. Between travels, the full time job, the full time parenting and NaBloPoMo, June is shaping up to be a pretty busy way to kick off the summer. I hope I find time for some fun too!