Monday, July 27, 2015

Monday Musings

Not feeling so lonely once again.  In fact, it is sometimes hard to go to bed at night when there are two or three teenagers talking, scrapping, or goofing off on your bed when you want to power down.  Summertime is nice for that reason.

So welcome to post #1164!  I can hardly take in that I've typed that much in eight years.  We've had 190,155 views as of today on the Chairman and Co.  And one of my favorite stats is that there have been 1,719 unique locations where people have been located.  Not sure how accurate that is since it logs me in at a suburb 30 minutes from where I'm at.

I was pleasantly amused when I overheard son #1 talking of his venture away for a few days.  He said, "after a week of not eating my mom's food, I feel kinda sick".  I don't think it is the culinary experience he was speaking of.  I think that's called "comfort food".

I took daughter #1 and 2 shopping last week for awhile.  We hit some consignment stores, Goodwill, and one of the local malls.  I really, really don't like shopping.  They headed off for a wee bit without me and I wandered aimlessly in the mall wishing someone would grab my elbow and show me just what I would like.  I wish I weren't so weird.

Speaking of which, I took one of those silly quizzes and it said that I was 50% weird.  Seems legit.

I went out on the deep blue sea for the first time ever!  Well actually not the first time ever, but the first time I was sitting in a kayak.  Son #1 kindly offered up the use of his kayak and the Chairman and the MYP all rented paddleboards on a wonderful summer Saturday.  I'll admit I was kinda scared and out of my comfort zone for the first five minutes, then it got to be very fun!  I didn't take many pictures since I was sitting with my hinder just a few inches above the water line and I didn't want to drop my device to the bottom of the lake.

Then we celebrated a friends 50th birthday!  It's always more fun to roast someone else when you know the party is already over for you!  He took it all in great stride.  Even the great big pair of underpants.
I'm not happy with Fitz (my fitbit)  You see he went to sleep (mode) yesterday unbeknownst to me.  So half-way through my walk with the MYP last night I realized Fitz was sleeping and not recording all my hard-earned steps.  I tapped him a bit harder than I needed to when I woke him up.  Fitz gave me fits.

Yesterday, we had a few hours to kill between meetings so we went down to the lakefront to watch the airshow that was going on.  It was quite entertaining (I'm talking of people watching) and the planes were interesting too.  I asked one of the MYP sitting next to me, "I wonder how many people are here and hoping to see a plane crash?".  She chastised me for my negative thinking.  I'm still thinking there were a few there of the hundreds of thousands that may have thought that.  See that streak?  That was the Thunderbirds.
I love that daughter #1 sends me 'funnys' in text messages at random times.  Here were the last ones that made me smile.

And finally, I enjoyed this one.  I'm so glad there were those that took an interest in me during my formative years.  Happy Monday!

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Lonely "bonus Muse"

Lonely.  Well sorta and not really.  I didn't let you in on a secret yesterday when I blogged.  I was alone.  I didn't want to let anyone know because I didn't want the phone ringing off the hook with lunch dates and dinner invites.  Or not.

You see circumstances among the Chairman and Co. resulted in the MYP off on ventures and the Chairman working late hours due to a recent vacation caused me to have nearly two full days completely alone.  That is if you don't count a dog or cat or a fish.

One of the school moms recently told me that her husband took their three daughters and left on a driving trip sightseeing and camping for nearly three weeks.  She wasn't a camper so stayed home alone!  For nearly three weeks!  I'm stir-crazy after two days.

You see I have cleaned the house and done the laundry and changed the sheets and ironed the shirts and stocked the kitchen with groceries and weeded the garden and mowed the grass and so forth and then now what?  Yes, the MYP are growing before our eyes, but I have to admit, they still are my whole life.  I'm going to be a bit of a basket case once they start fledging from the nest.

I was single for 11 years and I have no recollection on what I did for meals.  Cooking for one isn't fun (rhyme was purely accidental).   However, I was at Aldi today and saw what one guy does for meals.  He was checking out in front of me and had four frozen chimichangas and a big ol' bottle of cheap wine.  I'm guessing the wine is to help him forget the cramps (or worse) that he soon will be experiencing after downing four chimichangas.

Lisi and I did a bit of a road trip today to a local lake for an extra walk.  She's enjoyed the view and the swim and I enjoyed her company.

So in an hour or so I will be surrounded by my family and by tomorrow evening all five of us will be back in the nest.  I'm glad our MYP haven't fledged yet.  But when they do, promise me to call up and ask me to join you for lunch.  I just might need the diversion to forget how much I miss them.

Monday, July 20, 2015

Monday Musings

Hello!  This has been one of the longest times between blog posts?  Did anyone miss me?  Did you?  Did you?  (crickets chirping).  I guess not.  Well I'll blog a bit anyway.

We've been away!  Our annual pilgrimage was taken back to the door.  Door County that is.  We go up at the same time as a bundle of our friends and get adjoining campsites.  While we are there we enjoy friends and and food and fun and food and sweet fellowship and food on hikes or around a campfire.  There's family-friendly plays performed in an outdoor theater at night that are usually slapstick humor ones.  It's kind of like we hit "replay" each time we go and this year I didn't take many pictures.  For the MYP it's some of the favorite times of the year.  For the Chairman, it is a way to be out of touch of work and responsibilities.  For me?  It is just making meals in a dimly lit place with about 685% less counter space and no electricity or hot water.

Camping is just so wonderful and awful at the same time.  It was very apparent one morning when I needed to go to the bathroom very badly and I hopped on my bike to pedal the block and a half to the nearest restroom and realized my bike seat was soaking from rain the night before.  So I was kind of doing a 'potty dance' on my bike.  If I was home it would be exactly seven steps on carpet from my bed.  I dared not to look up to the corners of the bathroom ceiling because that's where the biggest spiders usually hang out.  The showers are available which is nice, but you continually push a button to keep the drippy luke-warm water running down your back.

This weekend, daughter #1 planned a little evening where some of the MYP from our area would dress up a bit and head to the city for a dinner.  I took a picture before they left.  It made my heart happy to know our MYP have such good friendships during these teen years.  We've watched all of these young people grow up before our eyes and I may be partial, but they are really, really good kids.

Facebook told me that six years ago today, Lisi became a certified therapy dog.  What tasks does she perform to be therapeutic these days?  Um.  Well if you count lying her sweet head on my foot when I read each morning, then she's doing a good job.

Our pet sitter is moving away.  I'm happy for her and will feel the loss once we need to pack up and leave town again and maybe even before that.  I was however a bit dismayed when she said Simba likes his wet cat food warmed up a bit in the microwave before eating it. So the very next morning after we got home I scooped a glop of the nasty-smelling stuff in his bowl,  He just backed up and started to meow at me.  I played dumb (not hard for me) and he got finally started to eat but wasn't happy.

My hands look like I'm a 68-year old rancher from Wyoming.  However, in the last week these hands have fixed a dishwasher, push lawnmower, and a toilet.  I promise, I have washed after every project.  But when I looked down at them last night before bed, I was surprised how ugly they really are.

I have a daughter that keeps encouraging me to use wrinkle cream.  It's a healthy dose of reality when I'm thinking I look ok for 50...

Saturday, July 11, 2015

Monday Musings on a Saturday

What?  Why on a Saturday?  No one will be reading blogs on a Saturday.  Well to be perfectly honest, I'm making hay while the sun shines blogging while I have some time.  You see Monday will be crazy-busy with lists and me hollering encouraging the MYP to get out of bed sooner than 11 to help get us ready for exciting adventures this week that takes lots of preparing for.  I ended with a for.   Oops I did it again! I don't think my past English teacher would think that's proper grammar.

We celebrated two birthdays back-to-back this week for our daughters.  They had a birthday party that consisted of a few of their special friends and their dad.  No, he doesn't love teenage girl birthday parties usually.  It's just that someone needs to drive the boat that hauls the tubes.  And the best part of the sleepover?  Teenage girls riding tubes and swimming makes them very tired.  Heh.

I must admit that I'm very relieved the next birthday isn't for another ten months (and it happens to be mine!).  Having four birthdays in four weeks is always quite exhausting for the one responsible for the shopping, baking, planning, and so forth.  I'm not complaining though.  We didn't plan the timing of their birthdays.  And we always reflect how each of our MYP came to be part of our family.  Each has a unique story and each is equally loved and valued.

Lisi has been harboring a nasty yeast infection in her ears.  If you have ever had a dog with a nasty yeast infection in his/her ears, you will know that is is very very malodorous.  Very.  She didn't ever seem to mind.  I'm kinda-sorta in the anti-antibiotic camp and wanted to cure her on my own.  So I "Googled" and found some ideas.  I kept giving her baths around her ears/head.   I squirted in white vinegar and she smelled like a very rancid pickle.  I then got some OTC medicine for yeast infection that isn't to be used in the ears.  I did it repeatedly for three days.  And you know what?  Hooray!  She just smells like a stinky and sometimes wet dog again!  Who knew that would be a good thing!  On a side note the cat has raging ear mites and we are treating him too.  Ahhhh the joys of pets.

The Chairman left for a bike ride today on his road bike.  He had been gone a bit longer than normal and so I just said out loud to one of the MYP that I was a bit worried.  It is scary to have him out on the roads with narrow shoulders and distracted drivers.  Then I kept chattering along while I was making granola saying how much our life would be different if we lost him.  I would lose my best friend.  My one true love.  The father of my children.  We wouldn't be able to do so many joyous things we do because he wouldn't be with us.  I was just talking aimlessly and started really thinking about how much I should love and value him and then I turned around.  There were tears streaming down her face.  Oh no!  Why are you crying?  "Mom, you're making me sad.".  I said, he's most likely fine and within minutes, he was walking in the back door happy for a longer than usual ride.  Whew!  And maybe I shouldn't talk so much.

Blogging.  I try to keep it real.  I do.  Someone was talking to me about someone we both know and I said, 'they seem to be very nice from what I read on her blog'.  The person I was speaking with said, (gasp!), "You can't believe what you read on a blog.".  I was about to sputter and spurt and say that mine is 147% truthful.  And most days it is.  However, some days there is typical family stuff with sibling rivalry, spousal disagreement on an issue, or what-not.  So maybe I'm only 127% truthful.  Hopefully, you can believe what you read here at the Chairman and Co.!

So I'll post some pictures for you and say my responsibilities for blogging this next week are over.  I hope you are enjoying your summertime days.  We certainly are.  And come September 2, I'm due for a very long nap.
I asked one of the MYP to pose by this.  She said I was being mean...

off for some birthday fun!

Sweet 16 and 13

Some girls I like and a brother
Eight years later they tried to recreate the bottom photo

The Chairman as Captain

Monday, July 6, 2015

Monday Musings

Well good morning!  Or afternoon!  Or whenever you happen to be pulling up the latest from the Chairman and Co.  We are thoroughly enjoying the throes of summer.

Yes, Fitz really gave me the fits yesterday.  I've been walking my shoe tread down the past week trying to meet every quota Fitz expects of me.  I've not failed yet.  And!  Drum roll... I've gained one pound!  WHAT?  Isn't the whole point of this rotten rubber bracelet is to lose a few pounds.  At this rate I'll be pushing 200 by next year.  Fitz and I will need to have a talk if this silliness keeps up.

We have some really neat men that come to our house a few times/year.  This last time they came they left something behind for us.  It was kefir grains.  Now before you get all haughty and think I'm going "granola" on you, hear me out.  The Chairman and I are having a large glass for breakfast each and every day and I have to admit that I feel better somehow.  There's 2.987 billion or gazillion probiotics in this sludge we are slurping though it does smell and look eerily similar to baby spit-up in large volumes.   I've been adding hemp, ground flax, chia and a bit of maple syrup (the real deal of course) to the stuff.  Makes it palatable.  So if I get the flu or a cold or something worse, it isn't because I haven't tried to keep it away.

We had a lovely time celebrating the 4th of July.  It began with our pilgrimage into the city to watch a massive fireworks display with friends.  This time there were about 35 of us together.  As usual, the visiting was the best part.  In fact, this year I chatted away with the one closest to me throughout the whole incredible display that lasted an hour.  I hope she didn't mind.  Heh.

I was texted several times from a neighbor while we were downtown enjoying ourselves.  It seems Lisi decided she had been home alone long enough and wandered off looking for companionship.  She found it right across the street and stayed there until we got home at midnight.  I was texted a couple pictures.  She looked like she was suffering at their backyard party.  Anyway, when we got home I walked over to retrieve her (get the pun?).  She cowered and flipped over on her back and looked terrified that I was going to bring her home.  I joked to the neighbor man that he must think I beat her when no one is looking.  Well come to find out she must have been shocked with her invisible fence collar on the way out of the yard and didn't want to have that happen heading home.  I took it off and she trotted home happily.

Then the Chairman put away the Chairman's hat and donned a Captain's hat and we headed off to the deep blue sea.  Well actually, just to a nearby lake with the two MYP that were home.  I'd add a picture of the Chairman and myself but seeing me in a middle-age swimsuit or maybe better described as one from the Middle Ages isn't good for the retinas.  Son #1 was off on his own adventure helping do projects and having ridiculous amounts of fun with family.

And so another week is here!  A blissful - summertime week.  Two sisters with birthdays one day and three years apart.  We never knew when daughter #1 joined our family that daughter #2 would have a birthday right next door.  It's been wonderful and awful at the same time.  But we try to celebrate individually as well as together.

Three teenagers in the house as of this week.  It is very different than having three toddlers.  But most often in a very good way.  Happy week ahead!

Friday, July 3, 2015

Feeling Independent

No, I'm not branching out to do my own thing.  I'm still firmly and happily attached to the Chairman and the MYP and other responsibilities here at the Chairman and Co.  It just happens to be the day Independence Day is observed and tomorrow is the real deal!  One of my favorite holidays for sure!  I'll tell you why down below.

I've been having fits lately.  Not naughty ones.  Fits about a fitbit - a rubberized thing you wear on your arm that tracks your every movement whether awake or asleep.
please don't be distracted by the 50-year old wrinkled hand
I had some birthday money that hadn't been used and have wanted one of these for some time.  I need to lose five or ten or somewhere in between pounds and thought this little device might hold me accountable.  I thought it was perfect for me because I'm a walker and its main thing is counting steps.  I had no idea a little rubber thing worn around your wrist could be such a monster.

It's basically Santa Claus.  No it doesn't give any gifts at the stroke of midnight.  The Fitbit (who I will refer to as Fitz) sees you when you're sleeping.  It knows when you're awake.  It knows if you've been bad or good so be good for goodness sake!  

Fitz wants you to record all your food and drink intake then tell you how many calories you have left for the day.  I knew I was going over yesterday as we celebrated the Chairman's birthday, so I didn't tell Fitz a few things.  Makes him less testy.

Fitz flashes lights and softly vibrates when you've met your step quota of the day.  Fitz will vibrate when you want an alarm to go off.  I think he should shock you when you are ready to bite into that ginormous glazed doughnut instead.  

He has changed my life.  You see I've been known to tell the MYP to run get this or that out of the downstairs freezer.  I've hollered at them to get the newspaper or mail.  I've told them to go out to the garden to cut lettuce because it's an easy job but you just have to walk back to the lot line.   Well, now I want to make my quota and so I'm gladly doing the running.  

I also am showing early-onset dementia.  The other night I was 200 steps away from my quota before we left for our study meeting so I aimlessly walked circles in the garage around the vehicles to make the number.  Our neighbor was doing yard work and paused and looked our way to see if I was ok.  

The sleep portion of Fitz is the most fascinating to me.  I push on Fitz until two lights softly blink.  Then I'm in sleep mode.  He records when I've started the sleep mode and tells me when I've fallen asleep and when I've awoken.  He also tells me when I'm awake in the night or even when I'm restless.  Kind of fascinating actually.  And I think it's fairly accurate.  

So how long will my relationship with Fitz last?  I'm not sure.  I hope he pulls through and helps me lose a few pounds of extra cargo that have mysteriously jumped on my body.  I'm sure it has nothing to do with all the birthday desserts we are partaking of these days... 

We just celebrated the Chairman's birthday yesterday.  

So!  Happy Independence Day!  On the 3rd, we always head into the big city and fight masses of people and join up with friends and visit and wait and watch people and visit and eat and visit and soon the fireworks start.  I actually would enjoy the whole evening even without the fireworks.  

There is some irony in the fact that the Chairman proposed to me to not be so independent on Independence Day twenty-one years ago.  Or maybe he thought I was a firecracker.  Or maybe because sometimes my mood reflects a bottle rocket.  I think the holiday is always extra-special to us just because of that bit of history we have.

So have a wonderful holiday weekend!  One of my favorite words is liberty.  And I'm thankful it is a part of our nation's vocabulary.