It’s been a week…

After a grueling weekend of soccer and hiking (which I’ll post about sometime in the next few days,) the week of April 20th started off really great! I had a decent day at work on Monday. It was pretty quiet in the office, and I was able to get alot of work done. At home that night, it was quiet too. Tuesday, April 21st was great- because it was my birthday! My 46 year old self had a surprise waiting for me when I got into the office- cookies from Soulspeak23! White chocolate macadamia chili chunk chewy goodness. Vegan, too! No eggs! They were too awesome to keep to myself, so I put them out for everyone to enjoy. And they did. The vultures in my office had them gone by lunchtime. I was able to get a report that was due out that day, and I finished up some stuff that I had hanging around my desk. Will, our mail guy, gave me an Estee Lauder bag with makeup, which was a really nice surprise. And I got tons of birthday emails and phone calls. Except for Rick, who forgot. We didn’t celebrate my birthday on Tuesday because I had Girl Scout Camp training at night, which was pretty interesting. I’ll post on that next weekend, when I get home from the overnight.

So we postponed the celebrating until Wednesday, which turned out to be an awesome day. Soulspeak23 and Ruddyna surprised me with lunch with an extra special guest- SS23’s hot Hungarian wife, Ildi ,drove in to meet us and take us to Havana, a Cuban restaurant in the Village. A pitcher of Sangria (yum!) and a pork (yes, but it WAS my birthday) sandwich later- I was feeling happy and psyched for the rest of the day. When I got home, the whole house was decorated with balloons, and MR got Chinese. Dad and Rob came over, and the six of us pigged out. MR and Beena lit the “37” candles on my cake (they didn’t have a 4 and a 6- it could’ve have been worse- they could’ve made it a 73!) Rob gave me my own bottle of Maker’s Mark, which I opened and shared (yum again!) and MR gave me an iPod touch! Awesomeness! Beena and Zombiegirl bought the covers, plugs and screen protectors for the iPod. This was great- it’s my first iPod!

On Thursday, the wind turns. The tide goes out. I roll a snake eyes.

I walk to the bus stop using my new iPod, listening to Meatloaf. I miss my bus. I forgot my ID, so I need to get a temporary. I get to work late. Certain co-workers get snarky with me. I started a big project and deleted a good portion of one of my floors. My Executive Director comes into my office, closes the door, and fires me. Yes, I was terminated. After 11 years with the company, I got laid off. I knew they were doing a massive layoff, but you never think it’s going to be you. I’m escorted up to HR (after shooting a quick IM to SS23 to let her know what’s going on.) The very sweet HR rep went over my severance and medical, then got me a car to take me home. And so starts my new life as an unemployed, stay at home mom.

Friday, after emailing and speaking to ALMOST everyone at work, I met some of my coworkers at the Port Authority Bowl and celebrated my birthday and layoff! Thanks Rick and his sister Diane, Troy, Ryan, Ruddyna, Kamila, George, Jackie and her hubby Patrick, Cassandra, Teri, my new veggie friend Rich and Vivian. I had fun! No bus incidents on the way home, but I did sleep past my train station (where MR and Z-girl were waiting) and got off two stations past (and about 3 miles away.) Thank goodness I had the iPod and Optimum WiFi. I was able to get MR to where I was -sheepishly- waiting.

So this week could’ve been worse. I could have been laid off ON my birthday! It’s all good.

For Sale: One Yard, Slightly Mossy

We had a yard sale on Sunday. Palm Sunday. I was bad and didn’t go to church. It was only the second time I missed a Palm Sunday. The first was when I was traveling to Hilton Head, SC. Ah. Hilton Head. sniff, sniff. Don’t get upset, mamasoo! sniff. Don’t even think about it. sniff!

Sorry- where was I? Oh. Yard sailing. Or is it sale-ing? Either way, we sailed through the sale. I had so much stuff to put out. Cleaning out mom’s things, I knew I would be bringing more stuff into the house, so I tried to get rid of some of the extraneous things I had laying around. We had good weather, and good company- Soulspeak23, Ildi and their kitty, Ruddyna with her new car, and for awhile, Beena and her boyfriend John and MR. Some of my soccer moms and one very dear friend came by for moral support- not support for the yard sale, just support for the recent events in my life. Zombiegirl and her friends when crazy with the clothes- Zgirl tried on one of mom’s fully fringed dresses, and declared herself an ape because it was “hairy”. It was good to be outside and laughing.

Things sold. It wasn’t really busy- we didn’t have the regular traffic we usually get on my street. I made about $60 bucks, spent it on expensive pizza (never again, Gino’s!) and Mr. Softee. But, we had a LOT of stuff left. Check it out what didn’t sell…

Princess dresses. Am I really ever going get the party business going again? Probably not. I’m not into pampered, spoiled princesses bossing me and my staff around. And don’t even get me started on their kids! So…out goes all the princess dresses. I’m cleaning them up, and putting them on either ebay or Craigslist. Out goes the tea sets. I am not doing kids parties ever again, unless it’s my own kid’s. And we all know she hates princesses. There. I said it. Out loud. No more parties. I have witnesses.

Why on earth did I keep my first wedding dress? I didn’t keep my first husband, so why the dress? It got quite a few laughs at the yard sale, and comments about how thin I was. Whatever. I felt good in that dress at that time, and since then, I’ve had three kids. So, whatever. Out it goes. Donate to Savers.

The twelve Beefeater glasses MR finagled from our favorite Indian restaurant? Out.

The chocolate molds mom gave me years ago? The ones that I NEVER EVER USED because I hate working with chocolate? Out.

The Precious Moments I received while working in a Hallmark store so many years ago, and have been sitting under my desk for the last 18 years? Out! Ebay them, or pass them along to friends.

We’re planning another yard sale in May. Cleaning up after this yard sale I found a ton of stuff I forgot to put out. I’ll put the above-mentioned stuff out if it doesn’t sell elsewhere. Since I now have more time on my hands, sniff, I’m going to be spending it on Ebay, Craigslist and Freecycle! Unless you want it…

Zombiegirl’s Birthday Part One

Turning 10 is a big deal.

Birthday celebrations started on Wednesday night. I had to make cupcakes for Zombiegirl’s class. I went out and bought the book “Hello, Cupcake!” The one I asked for my birthday, because in my Internet travels I kept coming across creations made from that book. I showed it to ZG, thinking she would pick the dogs, or the horses. What did she pick? Aliens. Yes, she’s odd.

I think they came out kind of cute! “Hello, Cupcake!” uses other items such as donut holes, marshmallow and candy to create the cupcakes. Nuking the frosting makes it dippable and when it hardens, gives it a sheen. I love this guy,

We went to Dad’s Wednesday night, so I baked the cupcakes there. Forgot the donut holes, so Dad went and bought me Dunkin’ Donut munchkins. They were too big- the aliens kept falling over. So I waited until I got home to finish them. By 12:30a.m., I only had half done, and was getting punchy, so I went to bed and got up at 4:30a.m. to finish. It was totally worth it. She loved them and they got rave reviews in class.
Thursday night we took ZG, the older girls and Dad to Red Lobster. ZG is a total shrimp nut, and had grilled shrimp and a baked potato. MR and I split a bottle of wine, which between that, licking the frosting off everything that morning, and those damn cheesy biscuits the serve, I couldn’t finish my meal. We got home, had cake (that I also baked and decorated at 4:30 that morning) and opened presents. Her gift from us was a new captain’s bed, bedding and the promise to paint and redecorate her room. She’s going with blue. We talked her out of black.

to be continued

Hittin’ the Trail

The bloggy trail lately got flooded and proved to steep for me to navigate. It was overrun by giant bloodsucking mosquitoes. It was hot, cold, muddy and windy. There were bears.

My life got in the way of my blog. It was too extreme for me to post anything more than a a few pictures and some giveaways. I can’t write about the sorrow- it’s too fresh. Maybe in time. In the meantime, I’ve had a few distractions- St. Patrick’s Day, Zombiegirl’s birthday, and an up-coming yard sale, not to mention, Work.

This post was going to be about Zombiegirl’s birthday party, since it was SO awesome, but I got to thinking about the ramifications of putting up her and her friends pictures for all the Internet world to see. I mean, at least four of the blogs I follow daily all show pictures of their kids, and write about them, too. So I started doing some research on “Mommyblogs” and the opinions that others have about these bloggers writing about the intricacies of their children’s lives. And what I saw totally changed my opinion not only about what I write, but about what blogs I now choose to follow.

None of the blogs I follow could be classified as “Mommyblogs“. Undomesticated Diva posts pictures about her kids, but doesn’t give daily updates about what they’re doing, where they’re going or how much she hates them. I like her style of writing- she actually made me laugh out loud a few times. She says the F-word without remorse. I’m not too sure I like her picking on her husband though (she calls him “CandyAss“- it smacks of Jon and Kate plus 8) but I think it’s all a ruse- she really loves him. PioneerWoman posts pictures of her “punks” and sometimes blogs about their adventures, like this and this. But I’m not classifying it as a “Mommyblog“- she’s got the whole cooking and photography thing going on, too.

But here’s the rub. They ARE posting pictures of their children. They ARE writing things about their children. Yes, the naked picture of P-dub’s son sleeping naked on the sidewalk might be cute, but can you imagine what his friends are going to say to him when he gets older? I’m not going to get into the whole child exploitation thing (can you say “Dooce?”) for monetary gain. I just don’t think it’s right that these kids are living a fishbowl type of life. There are crazies out there.

During my research, I stumbled on Poop on Peeps. ChickenLiver is a gutsy, ballsy woman who takes parenting seriously. She really lets these bloggy ladies know that it’s NOT alright to post disparaging pictures or stories about your kids for the world to see. She gets a lot of flack from the “doocelings” and the “PWits,” but that’s okay. It shows that a lot of the crazies out there follow these blogs with almost religious fervor. Kind of proves her point.

So off my soapbox. I’m not posting pics of Zombiegirl or her friends on this blog anymore. I will link to a Flickr account so my friends (the only ones who read this) can see the pics. I’m going to be removing the ones I’ve already posted. I”m not even posting the pictures on Facebook. Did you know if you send a message to someone, you gain a limited amount of access to their profile, and can see their pics? Being on the Internet is in no way a private affair.

So is the Bloggy Trail clear now? Is it sunny and warm? No. But it’s passable. Stay tuned.

Update: I was given erroneous information. On Facebook, you CANNOT see another’s pictures by getting a message from someone who is not your friend. Just be careful who you pick as your friends!