All out

Dance like you mean it!The month of December makes me want to dance like this kid.

From my perspective, December is super sized. It’s not only a holiday extravaganza, but it’s also the month of my birthday. This year when the hubs asked what I would like for my birthday, I said I would like for him to make me dinner. He is a very good cook. Like, mmm….very good.

I thought a tapas dinner would be fun. A couple of days later he sends me an email …

Please choose 5-6 that you would like me to prepare for your birthday dinner:
Patatas Bravas (Fried Potatoes w/ Spicy Sauce)
Braised Chorizo in Red Wine Garlic Sauce
Piquillo Peppers Stuffed with Shrimp Salad OR Goat Cheese & Mint
Croquettes w/ Serrano Ham and Manchego Cheese
Fried Herb Almonds
Chunky White Bean Dip
Grilled Seafood Salad
Steamed Clams in Garlic Saffron Broth
Goat Cheese Stuffed Mushrooms
Cucumber & Feta Tapas
Fried Chickpeas
Spanish Ham with Olives & Oranges 

Dessert Options:
Salted Caramel Six Layer Chocolate Cake
Chocolate Raspberry Tart
Chocolate Cheesecake Squares
Peanut Butter Swirl Brownies w/Ice Cream

I know this seems over the top, but he always goes all out. It’s a kind of running joke on my side of the family — in a loving way.

If your party is BYOB, the hubs will bring a cooler that has every kind of liquor, mixer and garnish you can think of. One Saturday evening in October we were sitting in my cousin’s driveway and he was whipping up mixed cocktails from our blue Coleman.

If you want a tortilla with your eggs in the morning, the hubs will perfectly wrap them  in aluminum foil like they do in restaurants to keep them warm.

And if you are me, you get menus like the ones above and workout routines that leave you sore for days, and days, and days. Oy!

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Junk in the trunk

I have been meaning to exercise. In fact, around the first of October I was running about 2-3 miles, three times a week. But when I got back from vacation, and the need to be in a swimming suit was erased, I slowed down. Then it got cold outside. And then it was getting dark much earlier. And, you get the gist of things. The excuses piled up.

I mentioned to the hubs that I wanted to get back in shape with the goal of January 19. I have failed several attempts at motivation, so this morning I said to him, “I am putting you in charge of making sure we get more exercise.”

He loves exercising. It’s sick and twisted. I dislike it. DISLIKE. Anyway, I knew he wouldn’t mind the assignment. Apparently, I’m right.

He sent me an email with the subject line: Workout.

His message said: Here’s my winter workout plan for you, all of which can be done indoors.  I’ll print this off and bring a copy home for you.  Just remember that you did ask for this.

Upper Body
Push-ups: 15-25
Shoulder Press: 15-25
Rows: 15-25
Dips: 15-25
Curls: 15-25
Cross-leg Sit-up: 15-25
Obliques: 15-25
Sit-up, V-up: 15-25

Lower Body
Wall Sit: 1 min
Calf Raises: 25-50
Lunges: 15-25
Calf Raises: 25-50
Squats: 15-25
Crunches: 15-25
Mason Twist: 30-50
Leg Lifts: 15-25

Cardio
Jumping Jacks: 50
Jump Rope: 100
Burpees: 10
Jump Rope: 100
Stair Jumps: 50
Cross-leg Sit-up: 15-25
Obliques: 15-25
Sit-up, V-up: 15-25

One column per day. One minute per exercise, max. Repeat each sequence 2-3 times.

The subject of my reply back to him: Autoreply: Out of the office

My message said: Thank you for your message. I will be out of the office, tending to my husband who has lost his mind. I will check email in between psych sessions. If you need immediate assistance, please don’t hesitate to contact Lisa in the Marketing Department.

Loved one suffers from extreme couponing

A new reality show candidate shows potential….

Hubs: Feel free to make some salsa whenever you’d like.

Me: I haven’t made salsa in a long time.

Hubs: Yeah, but you used to.

Me: A while ago I made a batch that took us forever to eat. Why do you want salsa?

Hubs: Well, I may have fallen victim to extreme couponing.

Me: What do you mean?

Hubs: The tomatoes were on sale for 89 cents instead of the regular $1.29. And, I had a coupon for buy 10 and get $5 off, which equates to 50 cents off.

Me: You bought 10 tomatoes?

Hubs: Cans. I bought 10 cans of tomatoes.

Me: You bought 10 cans of tomatoes?

Hubs: They were a good price and you like to make salsa.

Me: I wasn’t planning to make salsa.

Hubs: But you can, if you want to. The tomatoes were only 39 cents each.

Me: What else did you buy? Crates of toilet paper?

Hubs: Very funny. Just the tomatoes. For now.

Me: You are scaring me.

Hubs: I scare you? You’re the one who made me dress up like Batman and go bowling in costume.

Me: Good point. Carry on.

Our very own Justice League

I’m old(er)

I’ve seen the signs…the kids I used to babysit are having their second child. High school graduates look like they’re 12. Searching for gray hairs to eradicate has become part of my daily routine. But the reminders keep coming.

Two nights ago I caught myself in a senior moment and I had a flash forward to what my life might one day be like…

It was late at night. I couldn’t sleep. My tossing and turning was keeping the hubs from a restful slumber. I broke the silence.

Me: (trying to imitate Billy Madison) Shampoo is better. I go on first and clean the hair. Conditioner is better. I leave the hair silky and smooth.
Hubs: Where did that come from?
Me: It’s stuck in my head.
Hubs: Mr. Deeds.
Me: That’s not Mr. Deeds.
Hubs: No, a while back you were trying to think of the movie where the guy wrote greeting cards. I thought of the name. It’s Mr. Deeds.
Me: Oh yeah! Why was I even talking about that?
Hubs: I can’t remember.
Me: Hmm … now that’s going to bug me. I bet it was funny, too.
Hubs: Do you have any other Adam Sandler movies you’d like to get out of your system?
Me: Do you realize that first I couldn’t remember the movie name and now I can’t remember why I wanted to know the name of the movie?! This is bad. This is really bad. Is this what I’m going to be like when I’m 85 and in the nursing home? My mind running in circles about things I can’t remember?
Hubs: That is your life today. Right now.
Me: Shhh! Stop talking about it. Let’s go to sleep and pretend this conversation never happened.
Hubs: That should be easy to do.

Just a myth

When we were planning to leave for Pensacola, we had a lot to do and I ran out of time. I did not have time to make the “Blazing Hot Tracks” CD for our friends who decided to drive to Florida (crazy, but they saw cotton fields and Elvis’ house so maybe not super crazy). I didn’t even have time to get a pedicure, but that turned out OK because the ocean chipped my do-it-yourself pedicure anyway.

I was focused on getting our boys’ laundry done, leaving instructions for my parents, letting the teachers know that pick up and drop off schedules were changing, etc. The last thing on my mind was preparing for the beach.

After a few days exploring Pensacola and collecting sea shells, the hubs and I decided to hit the water with body boards. The ocean was shallow before getting deep and then becoming shallow again. Because of the waves (and the fact that I’m vertically challenged), I had a hard time swimming past the deep part. I would swim forward, then get knocked back. It was more like I was swimming in place.

My husband, who is 6’1″, didn’t struggle with the ocean depth like I did. In fact, he was kind enough to give me a “sea tow” and pull me to shallow waters when needed.  And this is what we did all afternoon. I slid to the shore on a wave, turned around and headed back out to catch another one. “Sea tow!” I would yell and the hubs would make his way over to pull me to shallow waters. But there was one time my trip back out to the ocean didn’t go so well.

I was going nowhere in the deep part and the hubs was really far away. Then I felt stinging. First on my left ankle. Then on my right hand. My right wrist. “I’m getting stung!” I yelled. But the waves were so loud the hubs couldn’t hear me.

“What?” he yelled back. “Sea tow?”

“No, I’m getting stung!” I tried to swim out of the deep spot but I wasn’t getting anywhere. More stinging on my left thigh. The hubs started to make his way over. “I’m getting stung!” I yelled again.

“OK!” he made his way past a few waves and pulled me out of the deep.

“Jellyfish,” I said. “Look.” I showed him the red spots.

“Does it hurt?” he asked.

“Yeah, but it’s not horrible. They must have been small.” We both looked at each other in silence. I could tell we were thinking the same thing.

“I think it’s just a myth,” I said. He nodded. He didn’t want to pee on me.

“Is it still stinging?” he asked.

“Yes, but it will be fine,” I said. “Didn’t you see that episode of ‘Friends’? I think peeing on it doesn’t really help.” We stood there for a few more seconds not saying anything. And then, about 15 feet in front of us, two dolphins jumped out of the water. Suddenly, I was at peace with the ocean again.

As for the hubs, well, he never made peace with peeing on the jellyfish stings. Eventually the stinging stopped, and later — after the stinging had subsided — I found out the front desk keeps a spray bottle of vinegar on hand for jellyfish stings. Vinegar. So noted.

The famous Mr. Ed

I have a soft spot for animals that need homes. It’s so soft that when I see a dog walking near the road I always pull over to help. Despite my attempts, I have yet to actually rescue a lost dog. Sometimes the dog runs away from me. Sometimes the dog’s collar says that the dog lives 15 feet away. I know what you are thinking, but no one said being a hero is easy.

A couple of days ago I read that a horse needed a home. I felt that inner calling again. And this wasn’t just a dog. This was a horse. I sent a text to the hubs.

Me: I think we should get a horse.
Hubs: OK…might I ask what led to that conclusion?
Me: Someone posted on my company’s Intranet that a horse needs a home. Boys like horses. We have boys. It all makes sense.
Hubs: Our Cub Scout could earn his horseback riding pin.
Me: Exactly!
Hubs: It cracks me up that you actually have a horse on your Intranet. Where would we keep this horse?
Me: We would keep the horse in our new backyard after we move. You could build it an eco-friendly, self-sustaining, one-horse stable.
Hubs: The engineer in me appreciates the buzz words but I’m not sure we’ll get a horse stable approved by the Home Owners Association.
Me: Ugh! The red tape! Fight the power!
Hubs: I’ll be sure to add “horse stable” to the agenda for our next meeting with the architect.
Me: Is it going on the “if there’s any money left over” list? If so, list it after the slide and rock wall, but before the foam pit.

Later that evening….

Me: I had an idea for the horse.
Hubs: And that is…
Me: Remember how your friend Brad is going to buy a farm? The horse could live on his farm!
Hubs: Has he bought a farm?
Me: Not yet. Also, Brad wants to know if we want to buy a farm, too, as an investment.
Hubs: I think I’ll pass.
Me: Yeah. I told him that was a lot of shit to shovel for a pair of stilettos.
Hubs: That’s one way to put it.
Me: Brad said it’s called manure. What is this on the counter?
Hubs: I did some research and found a supplement that will help my memory, since you have pointed out that I struggle in that area. Would you like me to make you a salad for lunch tomorrow?
Me: Are we still doing that low-carb diet?
Hubs: As far as I know.
Me: I guess. I mean, yes please.

This morning….

Me: Babe, wake up! You are supposed to drive me to work this morning! Remember?
Hubs: No…
Me: Oh no, you didn’t take your supplements, did you?
Hubs: No, I didn’t.
Me: I’m just kidding. I made that up. But you did agree to buy me a new handbag, just in case you forgot. Are you going to take those pills?
Hubs: I don’t know.
Me: You should. It might help. Plus, you did the research.
(After rolling out of bed, the hubs opens the cabinet, takes the pills, puts the bottle back, and closes the cabinet door.)
Me: Look! You remembered to close the cabinet door!
Hubs: Ugh! This is exactly why I didn’t want to take the supplements.
Me: If I can’t help you celebrate your memory successes, I will be sad. This is really not my week. First, no carbs, then no horse, and now no memory celebrations?!
Hubs: You are too much.

Later this morning the hubs sends me an email….

Hubs: I should warn you now that I might want to get a few of these for our new house.
(He links to a website about a WiFi enabled, energy-efficient, LED lightbulb that can be controlled by your smart phone.)
I reply back: The horse will love it!
Hubs: True. And, this way we can turn the horse’s lights on and off from our phones, and won’t have to walk out to the stable to do it.  We’ll just have to make sure that our WiFi signal is strong enough to reach the stable.

And there he goes again, over thinking everything. That man is a piece of work, but I sure do love him.

Thank you, Fifty Shades

Yes, I read the Fifty Shades series. I’m also trying to figure out how to delete the e-books from my Kindle so my 7-year-old doesn’t stumble upon them. If you know how to do that, please leave instructions. I would be forever grateful.

I know what some women took away from the Fifty Shades books. After all, there is now a wave of expectant moms having “Grey Babies.” Here’s what I walked away with…

When he looks at you, take the time to look into his eyes. When he speaks to you, listen – actually listen – to his words. When he touches you, pay attention to how it feels.

The series has changed my perception of reality’s every day ruggedness. You know, the routine of daily life that wears away the excitement, leaving a ho hum feeling behind. For example, when my husband sent a text saying that he read my first post, my gut reaction was to think, “Well, at least I have one reader, although he doesn’t really count since he’s married to me.” Kick self. Reframe. What I really do mean is that the man who I love, respect and trust the most in the world took time out of his day to visit my blog. Turns out I have my very own Christian Grey.

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