Showing posts from August, 2010

Who knew I'd be Glenn Close???

Movies have always been a backdrop for my view of the world. Recently when I watched The Big Chill I felt rather pathetic. Of the characters depicted in the film, I thought my life most resembled my least favorite character, Karen (the stay-at-home Mom who has sex with the movie star in the yard). Everyone else seemed to be bound to their professional destiny, even if it is dealing drugs, while she was most defined by her relationship with men. Her husband, her lover and her kids, but maybe not in that order.  In her most memorable line of the film she chastises William Hurt's character exactly as a mother tries to shame her child. I speak to my kids like that all the time.

When I first saw this film way back in the day, I thought the characters were all really old (when did I actually get to be older than them?!). I assumed I would be most like the Meg-character (played by Mary Kate Jones, who I just realized is in Big Love). Meg chose an exciting career, first begun as social ac…

Argue, Clean and Find

Thank you for the positive feedback on the last three blogs. I am very happy that so many people enjoyed them (in person and online). I had several other things I had planned to blog about after that series, but I had to post another inspirational blog to share my good fortune!

Everything happens for a reason, right?

This morning my daughter asked me to help her with something online. Turns out, she wanted to buy a hoodie. Normally I would say this was a good thing. It is practical, not too expensive and follows the Middle School dress code (which will definitely become a blog at some point). HOWEVER.... I exploded in anger. "YOUR CLOSET HAS TONS OF HOODIES ALREADY!" She disagreed. I told her I'd bet her a million dollars that I can find 10 hoodies in her closet. I started pulling them out, one by one. We then argued over whether a zip-up sweatshirt with a hood is a hoodie, or whether a fur-lined zip-up is a hoodie, both are cotton otherwise. Does her $100 (or maybe only…

Eat, Pray and Live... a blog in three parts.... Part three LIVE!

Eat, pray... LIVE? That's not a typo. I know that Elizabeth Whatshername wrote love, but if you want a blog about love, there are a million others out there! Google away! Although if you want a blog about loving life, today's entry might work.

Do you read Oprah or watch the show regularly trying to learn how to live your best life? Or maybe you are a fan of The Ethicist? Do you spend your days wondering WWJD ("What Would Jesus Do"). I don't, simply because I know he wouldn't have run the red light that I ran yesterday, said nasty things about a close friend or tell his daughter "I don't want you to dress like a putana!" Please cover up would have been more appropriate wording!

Where do you get the guidance you need to live a good life? Or are you, like many people, just trying to figure it out as you go along?

So far, this blog is mostly questions. The truth is I can't tell you how to live the life you have! But as I turned 40 (aka "hal…

Eat, Pray and Live... a blog in three parts.... Part two Ora et Labora

I was raised by a mother who didn't believe in God. Both my parents believed that it was important to have a basis in religion to help form a sense of morality - at least I think that is why my atheist Mom forced me to attend weekly services at the local Episcopal church. It helped that Rev H was big on logic, and short on judgment.  My Mom didn't like God, but she really liked our "local messenger" and she respected him even if she didn't drink the cool-aid. I know why she didn't believe in God - she explained that her faith died with her first marriage (and losing her firstborn son some 20 years later probably didn't help matters). My Dad refuses to discuss his religious beliefs seriously. He still attends the same church, but there are all the lingering questions, and I have a feeling he will never give in and give me the answers for which I yearn.

So it should come to you as no surprise that my faith is incomplete. Sometimes strong, sometimes non-exis…

Eat, Pray and Live... a blog in three parts.... Part one Mangare!

I start this short series by admitting that I never completed Eat Pray Love and I haven't seen the film. I know how it ends, anyway. Life's to short to waste on bad books, and I hated this one! Elizabeth Whatshername lost me in Italy. I found it unreasonable that the beginning of the book focuses on not the break-up of her marriage, but the break-up of post-marriage lover.  Any person who anyone has seen When Harry Met Sally knows he is the "transitional person". Not the one. So I didn't understand the misplaced mourning of her post-marital lover. For me Elizabeth came off as selfish and whiny. As I read on my contempt grew.

So when she hit Italy and described how she was speaking idiomatic Italian after 3 months, I decided she was a complete hack! There are not many talents that I have, but if I were to admit to any, I'd say I have an ear for foreign languages. Even with some "gifts" in language acquisition, I'm the first to admit that learning…


We lived abroad for many years and during these years I was grateful that there was a NATO base about a mile from my home because they sent Armed Forces Radio. That meant I could hear about 7 hours of NPR programming per day in my car or home. Paybacks were 2 hours of Rush and 2 hours of Dr. Laura. To be honest, my leftist-liberal mind actually preferred Rush to Laura! This morning on NPR I heard some news that finally Dr. Laura had gone too far. (Or you can google her!).

If you don't know her, this clip below is a parody of her.

Dr. Laura's radio slogan is "I am my kids' mom" (i.e. I stay at home and raise my kids) and I have found her advice offensive almost every time I have heard her. There is nothing wrong with being a Mom who works outside the home. Who am *I* to judge others who do? And more importantly, who is she to judge them? Doesn't her radio show and books (with national tours) qualify as working full time outside of the home??? This hypocrisy a…


For decades I have cried about, complained incessantly about, and hated my curly hair. For months this is how I felt about C choosing cheer over soccer.

About a year ago I had an epiphany. Some people "find Jesus!" -  I "found curls"! While I can complain that I can't figure out whether I have enough gray to dye or not, and like every other woman in the world I crave positive feedback, I no longer complain about my lack of good fortune in hair karma. I turned over a new leaf and I decided to actively love and embrace my frizzy, wild, funky curls. Now I am grateful for every little kink! ;-)

With nightly practices already underway, it is now or never! It's time to embrace the inevitable. Dive in head first and don't look back. Accept change and love my daughter's choice about cheer. I've been treating it as thought she had chosen something really bad (like drugs?). It simply isn't the end of the world. But when I googled "cheer" loo…

Type specific ADD?

This weekend I got sucked in... to! It's a site for knitters and crocheters to share patterns, information and pictures. I think that if I spent as much time on actually knitting as I did on the site, I would have knit an entire sweater!

Who knew there was a single site that I could waste more time on than Facebook? One of my friends said she has recently become addicted to Twitter. If she can, than I can, so I'm staying off tweeting for now.

I realized that for me half the fun of knitting comes in the planning and starting phases. A long time ago I did the Myers-Briggs personality test and I think I ended up with ENFP (don't quote me, I think Clinton was still in office). But that fits - bright ideas, gets bored easily, dislikes structure and has a problem finishing things. That's exactly how I seem to knit! 

But do I have an actual deviant form of ADD specifically for knitting? (Whether or not I have real ADD may or may not be the subject of another …

Power hungry?

It's Saturday and you'll find Bridgewater's reluctant Cheer Mom (aka Bridgewater Soccer Mom) outside trimming bushes with her mini chain-saw. It's scary power! Don't mess with me today... but at the same time visions of a fingerless me heading to an ER keep me from really going wild.

Middle School placement letters came today. So far C has not been placed on a team with many of her friends. We're still waiting to see who else she'll be with, but like a TV series in it's 2nd and 3rd season, we're likely to find a new cast of characters in the fall Middle School friend line-up. I hope I'll like the new friends better than I like this season's characters on True Blood. Make new friends but keep the old? Not this skeptical Mom. I assume all new friends are prostitutes and drug addicts until proven innocent??? I'm kidding, of course! Joking aside, I like her old friends just fine, and to be honest, I met some of my very best friends in "…

The blog that wasn't

I started to write a blog today - maybe you'd call it a rant instead. I tend to react emotionally to things that don't necessarily warrant such strong feelings. Today it cost me exactly one half hour of my life.   Time I could have spent in the sun!

Last June, when September seemed like a distant future, I offered to co-chair a book fair. I did it with the caveat of "unless I go back to work". Since I'm still "employed" by the same company often referred to as "Casa L's B&B" I have plenty of time to chair a book fair. No problemo!

This morning when my co-chair and I stopped by the school to ask about numbers copies of materials to distribute for classes, the administrative assistant said we need 27-30 per classroom. I freaked! I blogged about the state of schools with 30 kids per class. I wrote about the demise of kids' ability to concentrate (not just mine, either!). I wrote about teachers' bitterness about their situation wit…

Simmering just below the surface

I have taken a hiatus this August from blogging about BRRSD matters, but today I want to at least mention the possible influx of money to districts from the federal government. Apparently Christie WILL request funds for New Jersey, after he initially indicated that he might not (according to a news report, see below).

Watch NJN's news from Tuesday. NJN is our local PBS station. First it discusses the new aid to help reduce teacher lay-offs (see above).  After that, it has a report on new concessions that Edison teacher's union has agreed to. They are taking a new cut in pay in order to save jobs. The highest in the state.

I realize that this is not happening in Bridgewater. I already saw the new faces (and no, not former BRRSD employees rehired) cleaning in two schools this week. Maybe some classroom teachers will be restored to my kids' schools, especially my son's Intermediate school where I thought class sizes were already high. To my knowledge they didn't re…

Dreaming of a white Christmas in August?

I love dreaming about knitting almost as much as I love actually knitting something. Is it the optimist or the ADHD that always has me looking for the next great thing to work on?  Currently I have more yarn than I can manage in my bedroom closet. But, I'm often so tempted to buy more that I can't help it. I just have to....

I am still working on a sweater (see left) I began one year ago this week for my husband, T! He noticed that I haven't knit anything for him since before we married... and he was right! So I took on a major project. I have 1/3 of the sweater left to know and 1 arm to knit. That might seem like the easy work is done, but the true work comes in assembling the whole sweater. I may have to outsource! It will be gorgeous when it is completed, but I can't predict how long it will take me to finish. It should have been done long ago.....

But the problem is that I keep picking up other projects. In May/June I knit 4 placemats for a wedding gift. I used a Na…

Girls day out

"In New York, concrete jungle where dreams are made of
There's nothing you can't do now you're in New York
These streets will make you feel brand new
Big lights will inspire you
let's hear it for New York,
New York, New York..."

My friend and her daughter were up for some mother-daughter quality time. I am always up for it, so I gathered my inner strength and drove into the city, confident I could get there on a Sunday without denting the car (we have a history of accidents heading in or out of the Big Apple).

I LOVE being in New York. But being there is like having a high school crush on a guy who is out of your league. I never got to date the most popular boy back then, and I'll simply never have the income - or lifestyle - to make New York my home.

But that's OK - my life is very rich and yesterday was a great example of my good fortune. If there is one thing I've learned since high school, it's that what you wanted at 14 looks very diff…

WSJ nails it

I've discussed this before: the chasm between women who work and those who are at home, and I've also discussed the fact that I can't seem to be able to say no.

I have been thinking about this a lot. My daughter and her friend offered to try to straighten my curls. She has a straightener. Since I had a little free time, I thought - why not today?

It was a lot of fun and looked great, but I had to swallow hard when I read a comment about it on Facebook. Someone's comment had nothing to do with my hair but that she was working on very important things at work. Did she mean she couldn't waste her time getting her hair done by her daughter? Or was she saying that she's a more important human being than me because her work is so vital to the world? She didn't say. She didn't even follow up her comment with an explanation.  It sounded like "I'm a very important person." The "you're not" addendum strongly implied.

I'm sick of …

The national pastime...

Took the kids to a Somerset Patriots game yesterday. I could care less about baseball, but anyone who has been to a Patriots game knows it isn't really about the ball. It's about the ambiance. The pre-show featuring a local organization's talents, the cheesy giveaways from local banks and of course the must unpleasant of summer gigs, Sparky - the Patriot's lovable answer to Snuffleupagus.

It got me thinking about other local things I want to do before school starts.

I want to knit something for a good cause (not to mention maybe win some yarn). I read about it in the Courier yesterday.  We have lived here for 7 years. Perhaps it is time to subscribe to the local paper - as just looking online means I'm missing some goodies? How long will it take for me to let go of the "Star Regret" (what I call my hometown paper) and embrace Central Jersey's journalism?

So if I want to stay in Bridgewater and have a great day - besides MR's pool, which I'm …

Identity crisis?

I knew it would happen. I ran into a Mom this morning from C's soccer team. C has been playing soccer with her daughter since first grade. That means some 6 years of spending time together on the field and off. It was the first time that I have had to own up to the fact that C is doing cheer this fall, not soccer.
B expressed regret that the girls won't be playing together this fall.  It made me sad. I will miss seeing the girls and families every week.  I should be thinking "but we'll make new friends at countless cheer events, not to mention all the football games" but I just can't help thinking "I like the friends I've already made, thank you very much, and I don't need any more!"

But does having no kids in soccer at all mean I'm no longer a soccer mom? Do I have to change my blog title - as I am now a cheer Mom? I always was a TKD Mom... but I highly doubt that TKD Moms qualify as a political movement (maybe in Korea they do, but he…