Wednesday, April 30, 2008


A sign that your husband has been gone for five days:

An empty carton of this on the dresser next to my bed. With one spoon.

Monday, April 28, 2008

Bra Less

I needed a new bra. I knew this because I finally came to the conclusion if your bra is creasing in the middle of the cup because there's not enough breast to fill it, that bra is probably too big.

And if you only own two wearable bras, and one has a permanent pucker and the other is falling off, perhaps it's time to get refitted.

The last time I shopped for a bra was almost two years ago. My sister and I went to Nordstroms and I got fitted. Imagine my surprise when I discovered I was wearing entirely the wrong size bra. My back size was smaller but my cup size was bigger.

For the first time, in non-pregnancy form, I was in a letter that is usually reserved for those of you who actually have breasts. How could this be? The saleswoman explained that when you have to go smaller in the back, you have to go up in the cupsize.

I then told anyone who would listen all my friends the size, just cause I could. And because I liked to watch their eyes drop as their mouth opened in disbelief.

Well, those days are over. I went back, this time with Sage in tow. My back is actually smaller, but they don't like to go that low on post-pubescent people. So that's still a 32. Unfortunately, the cup size is also smaller.


Sage was fascinated with the whole thing. I explained that I had to buy a bra, and that someday she would wear one too.

She had lots to consider.

"Mommy, I see your booboos!"

"Mommy, where's your gina?"

"Mommy, look at MY booboos!"

"Mommy, I have a gina and you have a gina and Daddy has a penis and Sawyer has a penis."

Thankfully, we were alone in the dressing room area.

The saleswoman brought in a handful of bras. I found a couple I liked. But you can't get a couple. Why? Because these suckers are expensive! I mean, I know I wear them every day, but $70? For underwear?

Of course I bought one, then raced home and found it for $20 less on eBay.

Wearing a smaller bra size really isn't like going down a jeans size. It kinda sucks. But I'll just repeat to myself, like Teri Hatcher's character on Seinfeld: They're real, and they're fabulous.

I guess it could be worse. I could have gone bikini shopping.

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Drop and Give Me Twenty

Let me rephrase that: Run 20 miles inside your oven - on broil - and then drop.

Because that's how hot it was today. When we had our longest training run so far. It might not have been quite as warm as it was two weeks ago, when we ran 18. It might only have been incredibly unbearable today as opposed to completely unbearable.

Making it even more enjoyable was the unrelenting sun that beat on us like a Top Chef flattening a chicken breast.

It. Was. Brutal.

We walked a couple miles toward the end. And we were fine with it. Because it was hot. In case I hadn't mentioned. At one point we even stopped in a Starbucks were a nice young Barristaman gave us large cups of ice and water.

We poured lots of it over our heads and put ice cubes in our sports bras. We live on the edge, people!!

The other thing is 20 miles is far. Think about it. Get in your car. Drive 20 miles away. Get out. Run back.


I'm actually starting to psyche myself out. I haven't trained like I did for my first marathon, mostly because of my foot injury. I cross-train but I don't strength train. The physical therapy I started Friday pointed out how weak my legs and hips are. I have a month to work on that.

There are women out there who appear to be, how shall I put it, a tad fluffier than my training partners and me. And yet they are faster. And no one seems to be struggling like us (although we did run two miles longer than everybody else).

I am worried. I'm hoping to have a good marathon. At least, if I start getting tired, I can think back on today and what I endured - and survived. I even managed to run the final mile or so. Even though, by then, the water in our bottles had reached the same temperature as our bodies.

"It's like piss," I said. Which is, incidentally, just what your friends want to hear as they're taking some nice big swigs.

And then Torrey made an excellent point. Who says piss? Pissed off, yes. But piss? I'm not even sure when the last time was I actually said that word by itself. Heat and sun and sweat to crazy things to the brain (including earlier, when I managed to insult two of Cindy's favorite sports and her heritage. Sometimes diarrhea of the mouth is not so much better than the other kind).

Overall, though, I enjoyed spending time with Cindy and Torrey. And no offense to them, but I'm looking forward to spending less time with them on next week's run, which we think will be about 15 - before we go up to 20+ the following week.

Here's hoping for cloud cover!

Friday, April 25, 2008

Too Much Time With Daddy

"Sawyer, we're going to go over to Target. Mommy has to pee."

"Are you going to pee in the bushes?"

Thursday, April 24, 2008

The Gift that Keeps on Giving

I was always a guy's girl. I was the one who talked sports with them, listened to rock while their girlfriends had pop music on the dial. I chugged beer, smoked dope (of COURSE I didn't inhale! Not once! Not even now, on the rare occasion that I smell it in the air, I NEVER take a deeper breath than necessary!) and listened to all their boy talk.

My senior year of college I started hanging out more with the girls. I'm not exactly sure why. Maybe I realized the way to, you know, meet new guys was not to always be going out to the bars with large groups of them. These girls were an awful bunch, looking back on it. They were all gorgeous and one, in particular, knew it. There really is nothing good about five women living in a two bedroom apartment. I was not sad when that semester ended.

The career I chose all but guaranteed I'd be surrounded by all men, all the time. At one point, there were only two women covering Major League Baseball in the country.

So I didn't exactly pal around with women on a daily basis, although I did make some amazing women friends all over the country.

Then I had Sawyer.

I joined a new mom's support group at the hospital where I delivered. And found some wonderful women who I still rely upon for advice, venting, confession.

But Sawyer's four. It's been awhile since I've made another friend.

I meet plenty of moms every day, at the park, different classes Sage takes, Sawyer's preschool. But I haven't really clicked that much with anyone. Or maybe I like the mom but the kid is a nightmare. Whatever.

A month or so ago, I had a brief "right on, sister!" moment at a local park. Sage was playing with this little girl. So I chatted with the mom. We were talking about preschool, because she also has a son who is a week older than Sawyer.

That subject turned to religion and how there are more religious preschools around here than secular ones. But she, like me, wanted her kids at a secular one. We discussed the often bizarre experience of living in the Bible Belt that is South Orange County - Saddleback Church, one of those megachurches (the pastor is Rick Warren who wrote the bestseller Purpose Driven Life), is about two miles from my house.

It could be worse. We could live in Florida, which thinks it's okay for the government to make this:

We both have met many people claiming to be Christians but whose actions are anything but (obviously there are those who walk the talk. But it seems there are equal numbers of those who are shtupping the neighbor on Saturday night and then are front row center at church Sunday morning - and who make sure everyone knows they are regular churchgoers).

The meeting of the minds went on for maybe 20 minutes. Then she left. And I was left thinking "Wow, someone who thinks just like I do. In Orange County. Shocking!"

So imagine my surprise when, a couple weeks ago, a mom tapped me on the shoulder at Sage's gym class and said "Remember me? We talked religion at the park."

Turns out her daughter, H, is in Sage's gym class. And then they randomly came to our closest park last week.

This week, we decided to have a playdate. We were to meet at the park and stay for lunch. Only, Sawyer had this weird fever with no other symptoms - except for this spot on his lip that he likes to pick.

I decided to go ahead with the playdate because Sawyer was SO excited to meet H's brother, G. Off we went. After a slow start, where Sawyer just sat in the sand and stared into space, the kids started pretending they were pterodactyls and went flying all over the park.

And K and I got to sit and talk. She said:

"You're not from here, are you."

Because she's not either. Like me, she's from New England. Us East Coasters have a way of finding each other out here in the wilderness.

The kids had a great time, and Sawyer cried when we left. Then he went home and took a nap. For the second day in a row. He hasn't napped in months. He woke up with a fever.

Yesterday I noticed the blisters on his feet.

Yegads. Cocksackie, better known as Hand, Foot and Mouth disease. HIGHLY contagious.

I'm hoping K's kids only left the park with sand on their feet, and not a nasty case of HFM.

The good news is K laughed at my email and is not concerned. She wants to do another playdate.

After all, a good friend is hard to find.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

The "ON MY LAST NERVE" button

I know I must have that button, because my kids have located it lately with no trouble whatsover.

A sampling of a recent conversation between them:

"Sage. Sage. Sage. Saaaage. SAAAGE!"

"Don't yook at me!"

"You don't look at ME!"

"You're yooking at me. DON'T YOOK AT ME!"

And so on. Just replace "look" for "follow me." The only thing we haven't heard yet is "stop touching me!"

This goes on at least 17 bazillion times a day. At home. In the car. With whoever is the instigator being completely relentless about looking - or yooking - at the other.

I can't just ignore it, because inevitably they come over to me to get away from the looker, and both end up leaning on me - until one starts shoving and then they start bitch-slapping each other.

Can't we all just get along?

Let's just say by 8 a.m. yesterday - they hadn't even been up for an entire hour yet - both were sent to their rooms.

I went to the bathroom. And locked the door.

That way, I was sure no one could yook at me.

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Getting dressed

"Mommy, I see your booboos."

"Yes. But they are Mommy's private parts."

"But Mommy. Look, I have booboos too."

"Yes you do. Boys booboos aren't private though. Just on girls. When girls grow up their booboos get bigger and they are private."

"My booboos will get bigger too."

"Your booboos will be small. They'll look just like Daddy's."

"Mine will be small like Daddy's. And mine will be small like yours, too, Mommy."

"Yes, Sawyer. Mommy's booboos are small. That's called genetics."

Friday, April 11, 2008

Dooce Rules

Okay, it's not like we needed the confirmation. For those of us who read mom blog Dooce on a regular basis know how incredibly talented Heather Armstrong is.

I didn't know that she's also raking in the cash. From a blog!

I'm excited when I have 40+ hits on my blog on a particular day. Check out some or her posts - she gets over 1,000 comments at times!!!

Here's a link to a Wall Street Journal story on her.

I ran in to tell David about it. THAT much money! For writing a BLOG! I might just be slightly jealous. Actually, I'm most jealous about her talent. And how she strikes a nerve with so many people.

Ah, well, a girl can dream...

Thursday, April 10, 2008

I'm in love

I took Sage to the mall the other day to get her a pair of sandals, preferably Keens. The weather here has been unseasonably cool. But this weekend it could hit 90. I don't want the poor girl's feet to sweat. So off we went to Nordy's.

I wanted to get her feet measured. And her paddles turned out to be a size 9. Which is ginormous for a 2 1/2 year old. To put it in perspective, her brother wears a 10 1/2 at age 4.

Soon she will be borrowing my shoes. Until she outgrows them. And I wear a 10.

The problem with the Keens was the 8's fit exactly and the 9's were way too big. They are pricey enough where I didn't want to get the 8's only to have to buy another pair in late summer. The shoes are SO great because 1) they're waterproof 2) they're incredibly durable and 3) they're closed-toed, so they are acceptable to wear at preschool (they're not allowed to wear Crocs at school).

I then found a cute pair of Geox sandals, but where they fit her in length, they were way too wide for her. Sage was starting to take every sparkly, sequined shoe off the rack and was completely done trying on stuff.

So off we went to Heaven, aka the womens' shoe department.


While Sage amused herself by crouching down and looking in those small mirrors, I browsed.

And that's when I saw them.

A very nice salesperson came over and talked to me about my discovery: Naot. They are Israeli shoes, basically a poor man's Mefisto. But not really THAT poor. These puppies were $125.

I tried on the patent leather loveliness. My feet were cushioned, supported, transported to a new echelon of comfort. Oh yes.

Clearly, we were meant to be solemates.

But wait. Perhaps I should just TRY the Mephistos. You know, just to SEE.

They were cute and definitely comfortable. But at $100 more, I just couldn't do it.

Now, I realize these shoes aren't exactly sexy. They are cute, though, and most important, functional - and I don't mean in a white nursing shoe sort of way.

I got the results of my MRI yesterday. The good news is there's no fracture or tear and I can continue training as long as I can tolerate the discomfort in my foot. The not-so-good news is I have a bunch of scar tissue and some fibroid-type things and lots and lots of swelling under my first three toes.

Considering the amount of time I spend on my feet during an average day - aside from running and spin class, I'm watching the kids at the park, keeping an eye on both kids at swimming lessons, supervising them playing in the cul-de-sac, walking around Target, etc. - I really need a shoe that supports my foot.

These Naots? More comfy then my fuzzy Uggs.

There was, of course, a fair amount of Mommy Guilt. I mean, $125 dollars could get a lot of stuff for the kids: a bike for Sage, art classes for her, a month and a half of swimming lessons Sawyer, and the list goes on.

I never spend a lot of money on shoes, no matter what my husband will tell you. HE bought me my most expensive pair, which are my Uggs, and that was a few years ago.

I can't even remember the last time I bought sandals (although it might have been before I was pg with Sawyer, which would be more than five years ago). So I do get my money's worth out of them.

I look at it this way. At least while I'm standing there, watching Sawyer and Sage bicker over a shovel at the park, I can do it with a smile on my face.

Cause there is NOTHING better than a great new pair of shoes!

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

The Ugly Duckling

Last night, since David was out of town, I decided I needed to get the kids to bed early before American Idol so they could get a good night's sleep. I told Sawyer he could pick a book to read.

He chose The Ugly Duckling. We've never read it before, but for some reason he knew that's what the book was called. I'd like to think he, you know, read the title, but he must've heard me mention that book before. Either that, or he's a GENIUS!

So we read the book, omitting the part about the hunters shooting and killing the geese. Can you imagine stuff like that in a children's book written today? Like Pinkalicious reaches for her 23rd pink cupcake and BLAM she gets her fingers shot off by a 9mm.

I'm sure you all know the story, but to sum up, the "duckling" is bigger and uglier than all the other ducks. He gets picked on, pecked, yelled at, and even his own mother tells him she wishes he'd live somewhere else (I guess I will have to hand over my Mom of the Year award to her).

He flies away, and for a time lives in a shed with an old lady and a nasty cat and hen. Then he leaves and spends his first winter alone. He sees swans for the first time and has a certain connection with them as he watches them fly away.

At one point, the ice freezes around his feet and he is basically dead, but a farmer saves him and brings him home - where the kids chase him and the wife throws a poker at him. Good times!

Then spring comes, and the swans return, and the poor ugly duckling realizes he is, in fact a beautiful swan. Sniffle, sniffle!

Sawyer really seemed into the story. So we had a little talk about how sometimes kids are different but you shouldn't pick on them because remember how sad the ugly duckling was?

There's a kid in his preschool class, J, who clearly has some social issues. He doesn't quite understand boundaries and I know he causes a lot of problems in the class (along with some other unpleasant little people, but that's another post). When J got dropped off the other day, he was excitedly telling the teacher something. I heard this from three other boys:

"We don't care what he has to say."
"Don't let J play with us."
"We don't want him over here."

Nice, huh? These kids are FOUR!

Anyway, Sawyer told me that J has been knocking down the sand "volcanoes" that Sawyer and another little boy, L, like to build. So I said, "Maybe instead of yelling at J, maybe you could ask him to play with you. Maybe he just doesn't know how to say he wants to play."

I could tell that Sawyer was really processing this info.

Today, when I picked him up, he told me that J was knocking down the sand volcanoes. So Sawyer said he and L told him to stop - and then asked if he'd like to play with them instead!

I was SO PROUD! Because my little boy learned something about trying to be a good human being.

Thing is, J didn't stop knocking it down. So I had to explain that trying to be a good friend was the most important thing, and that it doesn't always work out.

Still, a good Mommy Moment for me.

And something to remember next time Sawyer's being a complete a-hole to his sister.

Tuesday, April 08, 2008

Yeah. That's right.

One minute I'm standing in the clubhouse of Yankee Stadium interviewing Derek Jeter. The next I've become a soccer mom.


How did this happen?

Actually, it was quite simple. I got married and had Sawyer and Sage and then "retired" from the newspaper business. Sawyer turned four and that opened up some new athletic opportunities for him. And how can you live in the OC without at least attempting soccer?

I wanted my kids to play sports. I just didn't count on this particular fringe benefit.

It became official this past weekend when I sent David over to the community center to sign Sawyer up for AYSO, starting in the fall. No idea why I had to sign him up five months early. Apparently our "region" is in the top ten for participation in the country(over 3,000vkids), so they need all that time to process the paperwork. Because I guess they haven't quite entered the computer age.

Sawyer is also going to play in a rec league that starts in a couple weeks. I had to buy him shorts, socks and shin guards, which practically come up to mid-thigh. We're still working on getting him cleats. Cleats! Thank the lord I don't have to buy him a cup yet.

I never played soccer. It wasn't really big yet when I was growing up. Our high school only had a varsity team since there weren't enough girls who played. I was interested in it, but I had a lot of pain in my knees back then so I never tried.

Some of my college friends played and I got to see first-hand what the sport can do to a pedicure. Yeouch.

As a sportswriter, I covered tons of soccer, from the high school to the NCAA Division I tournament level. I get the game. I know the rules. I understand the strategy. I know what a nutmeg is. I know when to yell "good ball!".

What I didn't know is that soccer balls come in different sizes. It never even occured to me! Basketballs are basketballs! Though come to think of it, is the girls ball still smaller than the boys ball? Anyway. Baseballs are baseballs, softballs are get the picture.

I went to Target to get Sawyer some shorts, and decided to get him a ball. He needed size three (five being the biggest). How cute is that?

Pretty soon, I'm going to be hanging around the soccer field. An official Soccer Mom, which to me, means we're going to have to go out and get a minivan to fit in.

I really do think of a Soccer Mom as a not-so-young woman schlepping her kids around to practices and games and weekend tournaments. She's kind of frumpy. She has goldfish cracker crumbs permanently embedded on her butt.

She is SO not sexy.

Aren't I too young for this?

Maybe not.

But you know, I've promised myself I won't be one of "those" parents, who humiliate their children by making complete asses of themselves, screaming at the refs, the coaches, other players, whatever, like their kid is freakin' David Beckham.

So I'll haul my kids to wherever they need to go. And I'll cheer them on. Because unlike those moms (and dads) who are pushy stage parents of the pitch, I know it's not about me. Or my label.

I'm saying it loud and saying it proud: I'm a Soccer Mom.

Friday, April 04, 2008

Who says silence is golden?

My foot doctor wants me to have an MRI done to rule out a stress fracture or tear in my foot, as it's still not getting better after six months.

It of course took me three weeks to schedule it. David's been away a lot for work and Sawyer does not nap anymore, which means when David is home I can't sneak away while the kids are sleeping.

I'm supposed to be running a marathon in less than two months, and I haven't trained the way I need to because I'm babying my foot. I'm only running twice instead of three times during the week (I spin the other two days). I do my long run on Saturdays.

My foot pain is getting to the point where I can't chase around the kids as much as I'd like to while we're playing outside. I need this foot thing to be figured out.

I finally had my MRI today. When I left, Sage was about to go down for her nap. I figured David would plop Sawyer in front of a movie.

It was freezing in the waiting room. They were running a little behind, which made me a little anxious because I knew I had to get back home ASAP to relieve David, who was attempting to work. I was also freezing, in case I didn't mention that.

Luckily they had a current issue of People for me to read to take my mind off how freezing I was. They finally moved me to another - warmer - waiting room. There, they taped a little marker to the top and bottom of my foot to indicate where the pain is.

Then it was time for the MRI. Ever had an MRI? I have not. I had no idea what to expect. I didn't have to go all the way in the tube thingy because it was just for my foot, so claustrophobia wasn't an issue.

There was this weird sound, which I thought was like techno music, playing in the room. I immediately started doing the Robot. Then the tech told me that it's not music, it's something to do with the machinery. Who knew?

I layed (lied?) on my stomach. She gave me a pair of earplugs because she said I'd hear some loud knocking. I was all, Okay, I'm sure it can't be as bad as Sage crying directly into my eardrum, right?

The tech leaves the room. All I hear is the techno beat. Then there's a noise like a microphone being turned on, and BLAMBLAMBLAMBLAMBLAM! OMG, this wasn't just a little knocking! This was like someone implanted an alarm clock on my frontal lobe and I couldn't reach in to turn it off.

It would stop, then I'd hear that microphone sound, and WAAAWAAAWAAAWAAA ENENENENEN.


So, you know, I worked around it. Because despite the jackhammering inside my skull, I still dozed off. Oh yes. As every mom knows, if you are lying down, and there is no child to watch to make sure he doesn't stab his sister in the eye, no one asking for one more cup of milk or another game of Roll the Ball, NO ONE ASKING FOR ANYTHING, well, then, it's nighty-night.

At least I didn't drool on the pillow.

I was almost sad when the whole thing was over. I had to, you know, get up.

Back home, both kids were awake and ready to go. Made me long for the "quiet" of that MRI. At least for another five minutes.

Drama Queen

Sage comes running, screaming and crying. My mommy adrenaline kicks into overdrive. My baby was clearly injured. Did she get stung by a bee? Bit by a spider? She flapped her arms in a panic before finally holding out her hand, her voice in a pitch usually reserved for stuff like one of her fingers getting chopped off.

But all five were there. There was no visible mark on her hand at all.

And then I deciphered some words through the shrieking.

It was, well, stunning. Because my daughter, who is not afraid to climb to the top of the highest ladders or go down the tallest slides at the park, has finally met the most terrifying object on the planet.

A piece of lint.

That's right. All the hysteria was over a small bit of fuzz that had stuck to her hand.

Apparently, Lint has the ability to mortally wound her. At least, that's what she thinks.

We have no shortage of lint, dog hair or my hair floating around this house. Why this has become an issue for her I cannot imagine.

We also apparently have no limit on drama around here, either.

Now Sawyer is getting into the act, waving his hand around and sounding the alarm if he gets something on him. Only homie don't play that. I just tell him to get it off, and he when he realizes he's not going to get any attention, he removes it.

Sage was at it again this morning, sobbing because of a PIECE OF LINT, MOMMY! A PIECE OF LIIIIIIIIIIIINT on her hand. After I removed the horrific, evil, vile, injurious hair, Sage calmed down. Then she summed it all up thusly:

"I'm just being silly, Mommy."
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