Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Susannah's Garden...

Feeling fairly uninspired at work right now. Just printed out some pasta recipes in preparation for the Farmers Market tomorrow. A specialty pasta place has a table that sells dynamite, home-made pasta. I've been trying to cook more lately (instead of relying on chicken salad and Campbell's soup to be the main course, three nights a week) and to generally eat healthier. The Catholic Librarian needs to lose a few pounds...I got on the scale Saturday morning, and nearly felt my heart stop. I swear it, I saw stars. It was the most I've weighed since I gave birth to Hank nearly three years ago. In fact, I recall (oh so clearly and painfully) that at *5 months* pregnant, I weighed two pounds less than I weighed Saturday morning. Life with a toddler can be difficult (while also working full-time, taking care of a house...you get the picture) and it seems I lost track of my eating and exercising, and generally taking good care of myself. So, this week I'm trying to get back into a healthy rhythm.

Anyway, that has nothing to do with Susannah's Garden, the book by Debbie Macomber that I just finished reading. The book was a very simple, sweet romance, but it made me reflect on things in my own life a bit in a way that means the book was quite good. One thing I liked about the book is that the female lead was a fifty year old woman, rather than a young, "just discovering herself" twenty year old that is often the heroine. Something different, something that appeals to the "definitely older than twenty" Catholic Librarian :) Susannah returns to her childhood home to nurse her elderly and ailing mother after the death of her father. She experiences a powerful resurfacing of painful memories regarding her father from her early life, and as the story progresses, begins to see them in a new light as her rocky relationship with her own daughter takes some unexpected turns. Susannah left home thinking that her marriage was stale, and that her father keeping her from her first love, Jake, was the biggest injustice of her life. She embarks on a risky and deceitful search for her old flame and uncovers some things she didn't realize thirty years prior. She comes to realize that a teenagers' view of things cannot be held onto through adulthood unexamined. Her memory of her father, her relationship with her mother and daughter, and her marriage all come out more positive and refreshed after her realization.

Overall, an uplifting read that turned out to have a thoughtprovoking and deep message.

Monday, September 29, 2008

"Mommy, OH NO!!"

When you're potty training a 2 year old, and you hear this from another room, *sigh* it means it's already too late. Not exactly a relaxing weekend.

3...pairs of Spider Man toddler underpants that had to go into the wash.
5...accidents involving pee pee.
2...occasions of something more substantive than pee pee nearly going onto our living room rug.

Bridezillas 9/28...

Wow. This has become a Sunday night staple, much to Mike's chagrin. So, so much fodder here. I'll try to summarize:

Bride #1 - Vanessa. Real winner here. She banned her fiance's family from coming to the wedding because they aren't nice enough to her. The stepsister said in reply that her stepbrother "got stuck with her because he knocked her up." Ouch. She whined the whole episode about people not liking her and things happening that didn't go her way. The mere sound of her voice by the end of the hour was making me frantic - "you guyyyysssss...you're ruining it! stop it! why do you have to be herrreee right nowwwww!" She actually had the audacity to hire security guards to expel her new husband's family should they dare show up. Sounds like someone who thinks a little too highly of herself.

Bride #2 - Can't remember her name. They all seem the same after a while. Wait! Donna. She spends money like it grows on trees and threw a crying tantrum when the mothers put too much sand and not enough starfish into her centerpieces. She insisted that she was getting married on the beach "come hell or high water" and refused to plan a backup despite the fact that she was getting married on the New Jersey shore in *April*. When it did in fact rain, she took it out on the poor cake preparer, who forgot the chocolate seashells. Her husband too, is no treat. I see what he's working with here, but he *laughed* when his beloved chipped her tooth 3 days before the wedding, and generally made sarcastic and immature comments to her face for the entire show. Given that they didn't seem to even like each other, I was baffled as to why they wanted to marry. At their wedding, Donna claimed that she had "married the man of my dreams," and Mike and I said in unison, "really?!"

Bride #3 - Chantiqua (sp?!) Sucks her thumb despite the fact that she's, well, an adult. Walks all over her very sweet husband-to-be, which is a common theme on this show. She's being carried over to the next episode, so stay tuned!

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Shimmy, one, two, three...

I had my bellydancing class last night. We're learning a routine for the upcoming Hafla involving lots of pretty veil movements and undulations. It's a struggle for me to remember routines the way I once used to, so I focused hard on learning the new choreography. Our instructor, Claire, added on a bunch of stuff, and as she started showing us, I heard the class gasp, "OH! the *envelope*!" The envelope? Yes, that's right, we have to envelop ourselves in our chiffon veils, and I can't see any possible way that this is going to go well for me. Middle Eastern dance is difficult enough for me without adding the complication of being blinded by a floaty veil.

I'm still working on my mayas without lifting my heels. Ever tried to lift your hip and then out without lifting your heel? It's hard :) So, I'm trying. I also need to practice my three quarter shimmies. Hip up, down, out. At the speed of a small crescendo. This should be amusing.

Friday, September 26, 2008

2 down, 1 to go...

At this point, I'm *so* sick of hearing myself teach the same lesson plan. We'll get there, I suppose. The students stayed awake, so that's the important thing. Somehow, I need to work up the energy for my bellydancing class tonight. Hafla is in 2 weeks, so lots of routine practicing :) Scary.

3 classes today...

Tired again, but Hank slept better. After verifying that I was there, he curled up next to the bed on the floor and slept til morning. This is the new standard for a "good night." We've really lowered our expectations :)

3 World Civ. classes today. Hope I make it. I definitely need more caffeine...

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Today's work tasks...

1. Try not to fall asleep. Yet another bad Hank night. Who else but a toddler can actually work up the energy to be belligerant, obstinate and completely truculant at 2 am?
2. Perform clothing check prior to teaching the 2 World Civilizations library instruction classes I have scheduled today. Yesterday, *during* the meeting I had to *speak* at, I looked down and noticed that the stitching next to my pants zipper had somehow completely disintegrated, and my underwear was showing. Classy.
3. Make lots and lots and lots of caffeinated tea.

The relationship of Play Doh to librarianship...

Last night Hank asked me to play Play Doh with him while Mike was in class. I gather up his little neatly packed bag of containers and molds, unpack it carefully (dough lined up at the end of the table, animal molds together, shapes next to those, the "garlic press" and other squeezy thing on the far end) and Hank begins to play happily. Suddenly, a Play Doh catastrophe of vast proportions occurs: Hank tries to mix the colors. Stop the presses!! This cannot happen. Everything that I do has to be organized - I believe this is subliminally why I became a librarian. I understand the importance of multi-disciplinary works, truly I do. But Play Doh is different. Play Doh colors must remain within their assigned place in the call number system.

I quickly yank the dough away from Hank and explain that the colors have to stay within their own colored ball. He looks scandalized. The next time I get distracted I catch him trying to stuff a blue penguin and a green seahorse that I had just meticulously created into the garlic press squeezy thing. I grab them and spend at least 5 full minutes separating the colors and throwing away contaminated bits. I think I have a problem. But seriously, the thought of determining the appropriate container (which lid color?!) those mixed colors would go into is actually disturbing to me. Shortly thereafter, I convince Hank that Iron Man is on and that he needs to watch it, so that I can scoop up all the Play Doh and accessories and quickly reassemble them into their correct place in the Play Doh bag. What's wrong with me?

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

"No Mommy, I *NOT* Go Back to Sleep! NO NO NO!"

That was my life at approximately 5 am this morning, when my son, Henry, woke up soaked to the skin. We've been giving him more beverages lately in an effort to aid the potty training process (the picture in my profile is a few years old - Hank is nearly 3 now). And unfortunately, his sleep situation has deteriorated in recent months such that in sheer desperation we allow him to sleep on our floor if he gets up in the middle of the night and wanders out of his toddler bed. Right, so this happens pretty much every night. Ok, every night. So, at 5 am I hear an oddly combined curious/pissed off "mommy?" followed by the above mentioned beginning of a full blown temper tantrum. As if the terrible two's weren't bad enough, the terrible two's in the middle of the night make it that much more excruciating.

So...I'm tired. It's nearly 2 pm, and I've hit the mid-afternoon wall. Somehow, I managed to just speak at a meeting at which I was *on* the agenda (so, no choice on that one). Managed to not embarrass myself. I just need to now make it to the end of the work day, and then go home to spend the evening with the exhausted and sure-to-be-tempramental Henry while my husband attends his Wednesday night Statics class. Good times.

Dancing with the Stars 9/23

All I can say is that I wish I could wear one of these costumes and not look ridiculous. I'm not sure if I'll get to watch every week (there is only so much reality tv my husband can take) but this may be my fall 2008 reality show. Ah wait! There is the always entertaining and catty Bridezillas. Oh the fodder that one will produce! Look forward to that Monday mornings. Dancing with the Stars is actually hard to make fun of, much harder than I would have thought. It has British judges, so it just somehow *seems* infinitely classy for a reality program. So far, I'm finding it highly watchable for reasons other then why I usually view reality tv (see 'making fun of' comment, supra). I like dancing, and pretty clothes, so it's a good fit for me. So far my only comment is that I envy Brooke Burke for looking so bloody fabulous after having four children.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

What I do during the work day...

I'm a librarian who shamefully hasn't started a blog until she's been working for 4 years, and who is ancient by emerging technology standards at...well, let's just say "over 30." So, I'm going to try to use this as a personal outlet for all things worth talking about, and complaining about, in my life. More background to come...