December 31, 2005

Where were you?

A Retrospective of New Year Eves Past

1980 As throughout my early childhood, I would have been spending New Year's eve with Normal Olathe Grandma - snuggled up on the couch with her and my sister down in her family room, watching the ball drop on TV. I LOVED going to grandma’s house when I was a kid. Every Christmas day, we would go to my grandma’s and the whole clan would fill the house to the brim. At the end of the day, my parents would go on home for a Kid Free week and return New Year’s day to retrieve us. 1980 would have been the last New Year’s Eve my parents ever spent together - that year during their Kid Free week, my parents were packing our things so that my mom could move my sister and I out of the house and to a new town.

1985 My mother and step-father banish all kids from the living room, leaving us to fend for ourselves that evening. It was a long and lonely one.

1990 Asshole #1 and his roommates always threw kickass parties - with New Year’s being the king of all parties for the year. I don’t miss Asshole #1, but man oh man, those parties were the ultimate college parties. The special thing about those parties with the international crowd was that the music was great, the booze exotic and the patronage a mish mash of culture where homeland clashes were left at the door. I've never drank from a beer bong, but dammit, I knew how to do the lambada .

1995 I went to Westport with Really Nice Guy But Still Didn't Want to Marry Him. Really Nice Guy and I had an awesome, traditional New Year's Eve partying at the Hurricane.

2000 My first New Year’s eve with X. It was a low-key night spent at a friend’s house playing pool, drinking beer. A nice evening to mark how undramatic, calm and comfortable my life was to become.

2005 New Year’s eve will be spent snuggled on a couch in Olathe watching TV. This time, I'll be with my 2 favorite guys and have a bottle of freshly espressed breast milk in one hand and a glass of my very favorite champagne, Veuve-Clicquot in the other. I’ve done the wild nights, closed many a bar and drank more than my fair share of beer on past New Year’s eves.

I suspect this night will still top them all.

December 29, 2005

What happens when I don't proofread?


This post is brought to you by the makers of the Baby Bjorn - the patron saint of happy babies and productive mothers everywhere...........

So many things, so little time to write them all down before Chimp Boy discovers that I am doing something that doesn’t involve HIM and then it’s all “Wah! Wah! What about me?” He’s so YESTERDAY - doesn’t he get it??? So dramatic..........

Anyway, still loving motherhood, but DAMN - the double whammy of the holidays and having a newborn have totally and utterly KICKED MY LILY WHITE ASS*. Also, I insisted on hosting Christmas because I couldn’t bear the thought of my 83 year old Normal Olathe Grandma hobbling around her kitchen with my my Fat Ass Lazy Shopaholic Hoarding aunt ** watching her and not lifting a finger. I was glad to have everyone over and I know the relatives that came appreciated it, so it was worth it. To add to all the mayhem, my sister gave birth to Only Niece the week before Christmas, so things have just been super crazy. It was a scheduled C-section and everything went fine, but she can’t lift anything over like 10 ounces and her super mongo Hagrid Worthy offspring (aka Older Nephew and Younger Nephew, aged 4.5 and 2.5 respectively) weigh like 100 pounds*** a piece so we are all taking turns hanging out with her to help out until she can start lugging them around again. Speaking of mongo kids - I may be on the way to having one myself. Arun is barely 2.5 months and has already outgrown some outfits sized 3-6 months leaving me to say “WHAT THE FUCK?”****

Speaking of clothes, it was quite distressing that I have been schlepping around a kid that is better dressed than ME, so I decided that must fixed. I went clothes shopping today for REAL clothes for the first time in over a year and half. I nearly cried. I am back to square one with my fucking SHORT LEGS. For whatever reason, I had no issues finding maternity pants in my size and lengh - a first for me. However, Normal Clothes manufacturers assume that someone in my size is a gigantic Amazonian with thunder thighs to match. Its a good thing that I don’t have a job now, because I am going to be spending some serious time trolling the mall for pants that fit these legs. Since I am not going to an office anymore, I need decent casual clothes (when I was working, I cheated the system by wearing skirts). I hate the mall. I hate shopping. I hate being amongst all the fucking suburban housewives comparing strollers and scouting the clearance racks at Gymboree and Baby Gap because it is a stark reminder that I AM NOW ONE OF THEM.


* No joke! It REALLY is lily white!
**No joke! It REALLY is fat!
***Okay , that actually WAS a joke.
**** Not in FRONT of the kid. Well, maybe sometimes, but he doesn’t understand - right?

December 24, 2005

Naughty or Nice?

The Rancid le manse just experienced its very own Christmas miracle! For the first time ever, my boy's sphincter let all holy hell loose - right up his back! Yes, SIRREE - our very first Shitting up the Back episode. I had heard of this phenomenon, but had never actually lay witness to it. It was enough to make THIS mother cry.

Merry Christmas!

December 23, 2005

How many wrongs make a write?

Anyone who knows me remotely knows how much I like to be right. In fact, I have been known to go to great lengths to prove this “rightness”. As I have gotten older, I have tried to tame this obnoxious trait. Well, Internet, I have been wrong - a few times.......

All these months, every time someone tries to Ass-vise me about my 2-door, family unfriendly car, I’d snip right back that we would be just fine. In truth, we WERE just fine with 2 doors and could have easily made it to the Summer 2006 marker as planned. HOWEVER, it was indeed a pain in the ass trucking His Royal Highness around in it. Fortunately, life intervened and we found it necessary to purchase a 3rd car (X needs a car in Virginia now). So, last weekend we bought a 4 door, family friendly car. I have never bought a brand spankin’ new car before and I admit, it was quite a treat to drive it off the lot. I’ve also mentioned before that X is not the stereotypical Indian - even though he came to me sans Asian Head Bob and SingSong Accent, he did come with some stellar bargaining skills that would make his own mama proud. My heart did little flipflops as he wheeled and dealed our way into that car. So, Christmas came a week early for me and RidiculousTV has a new friend in the form of RidiculousCar replete with a boatload of Silly Features. The car does everything except make me a cup of coffee.

How else have I been wrong? Throughout my 20s, I fretted about having a baby as I had been told I might have problems in that area. Without going into embarrassingly graphic detail, today marks the day that X and I started "trying" for a baby last year. Little did I know that I would be peeing on a stick by early February and taking pics of my monkey under our tree a scant year later. My head still spins at how quickly everything happened, but I am very, VERY appreciative of how easy I have had it. I couldn't have asked for a better pregnancy experience and so far, the kid is pretty swell, also.

Sometimes - just sometimes, it’s not so bad being wrong. Maybe I should try being wrong more often.

December 16, 2005

How stupid am I?

Oh so very...............

I like to joke that not only did I give birth to a baby, but also to my brains. Tonight only proved how unfunny that statment is.

X missed his flight earlier this evening, thus ensuring he won’t be home until tomorrow. To cheer myself up, I thought I would light a fire via Duraflame, snuggle in with monkeyboy and watch a Christmas movie or two. Right away, I noticed the Duraflame didn’t burn as it should have, but I didn’t give it much thought at the time. This was at 5:30pmish. By nearly 10:30pmish, I was concerned - the logs usually only last 4 hours at the VERY MAX. I wanted to go to bed, but I don’t like going to sleep with anything left burning in the fireplace Fire scares the holy crap outta me, which of course, is precisely why I love it so. Anyway, since I’m not only a CPA, but also the proud owner of a Master’s degree, I decided with the infinite wisdom conferred upon me by my local state university that I would poke the damned thing apart to its death.


All the pieces roared to life creating a situation that Eddie Murphy’s Uncle Gus would have been impressed with. I wasn’t exactly panicking, but I wasn’t entirely comfortable with the situation. I didn’t want to tie up 911 phonelines, so I pulled out my phone book to look up the fire department’s number. Believe it or not, they were not listed in the F’s, as you would expect. In fact, they weren’t listed ANYWHERE. I gave up, called 911, apologized profusely for calling on a non-emergency and was transferred to the fire department. 5 minutes later a big ass fire truck pulls up to the house - at least they did NOT come with sirens wailing. Anyway, the guys came in to assess the situation and they quickly determined I was not in any imminent danger (at least not from fire. Mere Stupidity is not their area of expertise, apparently). So, while resisting to urge the question the validity of several “Rescue Me” plotlines, I watched the firemen poke and prod the fire until it died to a reasonable level. Then, amazingly they left me alone with monkeyboy. Meaning, after I displayed such a gross error in judgement, they left me IN CHARGE OF A TEENY TINY BABY.

Good grief.

December 14, 2005

What Happens When You Let Your Newborn Son Watch the Victoria Secret Fashion Show?


My boy’s first peep show - heady days around the Rancid le manse....heady days....... Baby Einstein ain't got nothin' on Tyra Banks' booty, let me tell ya. Before you know it, his grubby little hands will be coordinated enough for $1 dollar bills and off he’ll be, breaking hearts left and right. sigh........

December 13, 2005

If you don’t have dreams, what’s the point of tomorrow?

My Little Dreamboat - EIGHT weeks old. Damn.

Yet again, X is in Virginia - most probably Fairfax at this time of day. It has been far tougher than I thought to have a small baby and have X travel so much. Grueling, at times. Particularly when your exhausted baby desperately wants to suck on his thumb, but lacks the coordination to pull it all together. Sigh........ Single Mothers everywhere, I salute you. At least X comes home on the weekends. I do have what I would consider a pretty cushy life, so I really try not to grouse too much. However, I bristle at the many, many comments inferring that X has deserted us. To the contrary, this has been OUR decision to live this lifestyle - a plan we certainly came up with together. What are the alternatives? Well, for one, X could sell his stake in his company, stay in Kansas City, and get a comfy corporate gig somewhere. But that isn’t his style - he has an entrepreneurial spirit and moving into a corporate position would make for a very unsatisfying career path. We could also just pack up and move to Virginia. However, X would still be traveling - most certainly back to Kansas City. Nothing would make me resentful quicker than X traveling back to MY home town while I am stuck in a strange state by myself with an uncoordinated, small baby. So, after careful consideration, we decided to stay in the Kansas City for the time being - hopefully, the next 2 years. X will be back in KC for long weekends (he still needs to work here anyway) and occasionally Chimp Boy and I will hop on a plane and hang out in Virginia, as well. Yes, we are only heading off the inevitable, but if we can stay in Kansas City for 2 more years, it will help in the short term - emotionally and financially.

So, this year has been a big, big year for us. We fulfilled several dreams this year and gave birth to TWO babies, of sorts. The most obvious one, being the little monkey asleep (Finally!!) in the room across the hall. The less obvious one - X’s company. For 5 years now, we have dreamed of X’s company getting investment funding. Friday, that dream became real as they closed on 1st round funding. Let me tell you - true love is hanging out on Cloud 9 just because your partner fulfilled one of HIS dreams. Is this the end? No, because one dream leads to another and ultimately, shouldn't that be the very cycle of life? Once you stop reaching for the future, isn’t that REALLY the end?

So, yes. Dreams CAN come true. And it’s a little mindblowing when they do.

December 7, 2005

Now, where did I leave my brain?

It's true - when you give birth, you lose some brain cells in the process. Somedays, I can't believe how stupid I have become and it's downright frightening that I am in charge of ANOTHER HUMAN BEING. So, in lieu of actually composing an entire post of something intellient or meaningful, this mangled mess of gray matter instead presents some Rancid Randomness:

Heir to the Hair: My God, the HAIR. At least the kid comes by it honestly - I had a full head of hair myself as a baby. But can we talk? It’s getting out of control. For one, it's downright sad when he grabs his OWN hair and then shrieks because his grasping reflex is in full swing, yet he hasn't quite developed the ability to UNgrasp. It’s funny as hell, which goes to show just how low my humor can go. Also, I giggle at the fact that I can pull MY OWN hair brush out in a jiffy when the monkey needs to be groomed. The saddest part of all this follicle madness? Somedays, I spend more time on HIS hair than MINE.

Intelligent Design, My Ass: The opposable thumb is completely under-rated and I can’t wait til my own little DNA sample discovers HIS. He doesn’t like pacifiers, yet desperately needs to suck SOMETHING. He tries feverishly to suck his hand, to no avail. When the monkey finds that thumb, all will be right with the world - his AND mine.

Gingerly Navigating a Gingerbread Exhibit: The kid was rapidly approaching Feeding Time as we strolled quickly through a VERY COOL gingerbread exhibit in Lawrence at the Eldridge Hotel. Unfortunately, I am NOT so cool. I kept trying to hold the squalling kid with one hand while pushing the stroller with the other. However, this is not easily accomplished when you are a complete MORON and don't realize the swivel lock on the left front wheel is LOCKED and instead you think the stroller is a cheap piece of crap when actually YOU are the cheap piece of crap for being so stupid and looking retarded as you nearly knock several exhibits over.

A High Stakes Roller: We have recently discovered the magic of the High Chair. At this point, the kid needs to be entertained in increments of 15 minutes or less. This necessitated us finding varying environments for us to put him into. In desperation, I brought up the high chair from the basement, shooed away any lingering arachnids and plopped the kid into it. He LOVES it - it sits him up higher with us, at the table. As an added bonus, the thing has WHEELS. His little bug eyes just about popped out of his head the first time we cruised him across the kitchen. I can report that fun was had by all.

Just More Proof the Kid is a Genius: He rolled over onto his stomach the other night- freaky! I had turned around to do something, when I looked back, the kid was on his stomach asleep. Although I was harboring hopes the kid was advanced, I think it was a fluke because he hasn’t done it since. I have quietly put away the applications to Harvard, but they are still within easy reach JUST IN CASE.

My Bring Your Trash Christmas Bash: My White Elephant Christmas party was a success - in my opinion. It was indeed very small - only about 15 folks or so, but it ended up being perfect. Because it was so small, I wasn’t stressed out while preparing food and cleaning the house. Also, I was able to to spend time with everyone who showed up, as opposed to doing the Flight of the Bumblebee, trying to play hostess. Hopefully next year, I will have regained some of my lost brain cells, and I will remember to invite the entire guest list.

Trolling for Strollers: I went to an area mall yesterday with one of the gals with whom I used to do Raku - her daughter is almost 6 months old. However, she and I are NOT shoppers. Furthermore, while I am the first to admit that I am pretty suburban, Raku Gal is NOT - she lives in a very cool Kansas City MO urban area. But it is winter and to the mall we must go if we are going to walk about with the kids. So, while it felt icky to be doing something so droll and “mommy-ish”, the day was just lovely. We walked around for 5 hours, catching up on our lives and comparing baby notes. Raku Gal’s approach to mothering is very laidback and relaxed, so I look forward to spending more time with her and taking notes since she is ahead of me in the game. When the weather gets nicer, we will of course eschew the mall in search for better venues - the zoo or some parks.

Buns of Steel: It is a testament not only to Huggies, but also to my son's hardy cheeks that he doesn't have a raging diaper rash. In my latest fit of Neglectful Mothering, I forgot to change his diaper - he went from about 4am to 12pm with the same old diaper. Let's just say it put new meaning into the word "loaded". Luckily, there was no leakage. In my defense, he WAS sleeping when I realized after his 8:30 feeding that he needed a change - I am a devout believer in the old adage about waking sleeping babies.

And Finally - the obligatory Simian Snaps:

Worn out from the wild ride around the kitchen.

This is what happens when wet hair is left unstyled.
As you can see, he's really bothered by it.

December 3, 2005

Stuck in a tree?

Now HERE'S a Rancid Rave for you - the next time you are about to make a customer service call, be sure to check out Paul English's cheat-sheet for by-passing those irritating phone trees designed to ensure you never reach a human voice.

This just might save you a few minutes or even HOURS of aggravation. Nifty! Hurry out there before this smart dude figures out how to make money with this list.

December 2, 2005

What's the Catholic version of "Oy vey"?

I am having a Christmas party on Saturday. I dashed off Evites for it a few weeks back and just went to check the status. I noticed the turnout is only going to be about 20 people. Then, I realized I forgot to invite a SHITLOAD of people. Like, we're talking entire groups of people! My two bookclubs, for example. D'oh! or Duh! both equally apply to my mass stupidity. Take your pick. I don't think the kid himself is the reason for my mangled brain cells, but I suspect sleep deprivation might have contributed. My last uninterrupted night's sleep was October 12th, after all.

So, do I tell people that I meant to invite them, but forgot?

What's he mixed with?

I met Really Tepid Gal (RTG - my former co-worker at the Federal Reserve) for lunch yesterday at Arun's Thai Place in Kansas City. I mentioned to the waiter that the little bundle of boy sitting next to me was also named Arun. The waiter made the obligatory remark about his cuteness and HAIR, then proceeded to ask quite curiously "What's he mixed with?" While I was tempted to say, "Oh, the usual - drugs and the mafia", I gave in and confessed instead to the fact that I am married to an Indian. Sometimes I wish X spoke English such as this - since he started learning English when he started kindergarten, he very rarely offers up anything good in this way. He doesn't even do the Asian Head Bob or the lilting accent. Once in a great while I will snigger secretly at something he misprounounces only to find out that it wasn't a mistake at all - just a British version.

So, lunch with RTG went as expected. I got all the lowdown on what was happening with at the Fed since I left in June. The meeting only served as a stark reminder to how freakin' happy I am to be a mother and that I get to stay home full-time. I needed that reminder because the night prior, the kid was a fussy MESS. Nothing I did could calm him down. While he eventually crashed at midnight and proceeded to sleep like a champ, it was still a stressful evening. In general, my mothering belief system consists of "Try, Try Again" and I ran out of things to TRY, which leaves the whole philosophy quite useless. Anyway, lunch with RTG was really nice. I miss HER, but certainly not working at the Fed. I still feel quite odd about the fact that I so casually walked away from my career - something that I only just completed paying the student loan for last spring.

Overall, I view these next few years of staying at home as my own Personal Sabbatical. I realized a few years back that I had so clearly chosen the wrong profession. There have been a few jobs here and there since college that I have really enjoyed, but they were usually due to my co-workers - as evidenced by the large percentage of my current social group that is represented by such past colleagues. So, while I figure out the Next Grand Plan for my life, I am going to suck every precious moment out of being a mother - something I have always wanted to be since I received a beautiful baby doll when I was 8 years old. Ironically, that very baby doll had a thick head of black hair and I have often been reminded of her since I brought Arun home. An eery way of coming full circle, I guess.

Last night, X and I went to dinner in Lawrence. What's in Lawrence? Great restaurants AND free Monkey Monitoring since both of my parents live in Lawrence. Can't beat that with a stick.

December 1, 2005

What’s the Opposite of a Silver Lining?

You know what they say about every cloud......

As I mentioned earlier - I scored a babysitter over Thanksgiving - her name is J, she is my 1st cousin, 3 times removed and the situation is a DREAM, thus far. One of the unexpected bennies from her coming is that it FORCES me to go to the gym - there are NO excuses when you are paying someone to come over so that you can do that very thing you normally have a milion and one excuses to avoid. ANYWHO. The downside of having J babysit is that she is family - her great-grandmother is Normal Olathe Grandma’s sister which means they come from the very SAME familial Assvice Branch (THEIR mother was the grand matriarch of all the Assvice in our family). In short - poor J is already receiving assvice from her great-grandmother! The latest is the “Don’t hold that baby, you’ll spoil him rotten!” remark. Furthermore, all it will take is a casual innocent remark from J to spur much bigger ones to spiral out of control in the familial Gossip Loop. J is a sweet girl and wouldn't mean any harm, but she is not completely experienced in the art of navigating the Gossip Loop. Therefore, I must make sure all booze, peace pipes, and sex toys are hidden. Must keep that family reputation intact, eh? HA.

Anyway - here are more snaps. Digital photography is great, except that I CAN’T. STOP. TAKING. PICTURES. Arun is already starting to react to the red-eye light.

Just like a trained monkey...........