Friday, January 25, 2013

Sensory Overload

I have had a hard week. Ever since my snow tubing incident, my teeth on one side are killing me. The problem is, the x-rays look fine. My teeth look fine. But I have been popping percocet for a week now (three cheers for narcotics!!), and the pain is only getting worse. Ahhh. My dentist told me on Monday to drug up and tough it out for five days or so, see if things settle down. Of course, five days is Friday and he's out of the office, haha. Could be a clever ruse to get me off his back.

Anyway, pain in your head has got to be the worst. It's like a dull roar laying behind every thought. It started with pain from cold stuff, then cold stuff with chewing, now hot stuff, too. At least I can say the pain is isolating: on Monday, it was all four of my back teeth (two up/two down). Now I pretty much have figured out which tooth it is. Maybe. It's a very non-specific pain.

With very specific impacts on my mindset. I am grumpy. I have sworn off facebook today, I even deleted the app from my phone this morning. After I write this tome, I'm going to put my little head down and stay away from the internet. I may even...GASP...power down my phone.

It was a crap week: Blake, my 11yo, is doing miserably in 6th grade. I spent the week talking to counselors and teachers and alternately wrapping my hands around Blake's throat and giving him big hugs. Kill him with kindness, or just kill him?? Today is the last day of the quarter. I told him I think one of our main problems is that he is not afraid to bring home miserable grades. I have elaborated on the many reasons he has to be afraid of bringing home miserable grades, and I started by showing him a wooden spoon. There will be no Ds or Fs on that report card, or he will become familiar with it as I was when I was a kid. Not that I ever brought home less than a B*, haha, my bad behavior tended toward the mouthiness and defiance. Shocker.

(*I did get a D in tennis at community college, but by then I was too old to spank with a wooden spoon.)

I should say that when he turns in his work, he gets solid As and Bs. But he turns in probably only a third of his work. This is my boy, that in first grade when they started assigning homework, he looked at me in horror and anger and said, "BUT I ALREADY WENT TO SCHOOL TODAY." And that attitude stuck. :) My 7yo, Reid, when I was doing alphabet flash cards when he was four, looked me in the eye with dead seriousness and said, "Look. I. Don't. Care." Ah, that attitude has stuck, too.

Stinky boys. Sabrina, who is a mom to three boys, and I were laughing (weakly, but still laughing) yesterday about how parenting them is getting to watch men being made. They never change. And they'll grow up and get married and their wives will hate us mothers for making them such jerks and the mothers will be standing around saying, "Whatever. Don't blame me. I hope you have boys, too. You'll see."

I complain, but I love them. But this week, I am on B-O-Y-O-V-E-R-L-O-A-D.

Last night, I had plans with a friend. She bailed via text at 5:00 a.m., saying she needed to stay home sick, and I'll admit, I was delighted. I didn't really want to go. It's been a hard week and I just wanted to sit quietly all by myself. I didn't tell Mr. W. that my plans had changed, because I knew he be ON IT, offering to change his own plans to be with me. Shhh.

I went to the library. I left my f'ing phone in the car and I went to the library and I sat and read a book. Quietly, all to myself. I think I'm going to throw my phone away. It has become a giant weighted stone around my neck this week. Alli coerced me into throwing a slumber party tomorrow night - UGH UGH UGH. Every time that little sucker beeps, flashes or vibrates this week, it is like a nail into my brain.

Late last night, I unleashed a bit on Mr. W., who had been playing with his new iPad, sending face time requests - foolishly thinking that I was not receiving them because I was not accepting them - I believe on the day he got it (his out of state and country mom and brother also got one while visiting him last week to stay in touch via facetime) I said, "I will not facetime." This declaration seems to have not been heard or, if heard, not understood to be the definitive declaration that it was. I will reiterate it later with greater clarity. :)

Anyway. So I had told him that evening that my plans had changed and I enjoyed a quiet evening alone, to which, he of course, responded, "Bummer! I would have happily changed my plans to hang out with you."

Yes. I know.

And my lovebug daughter has already chipperly told me she'll be home tomorrow (a "kid-free" weekend) with her seven noisy girlfriends, and she's also spending her whole birthday weekend at home in two weeks (another "kid-free" weekend), and Mr. W. has mapped out a challenging bike training schedule that books every free minute of my time for every weekend from now to September, and biking is FUN and I am trying to REMEMBER that when I look at this very elaborate Excel spreadsheet that screams "YOU WILL KNOW WHAT YOU'RE DOING EVERY MINUTE OF THE NEXT SIX MONTHS!" And Alli wants to do an organized 5K a month and the March one is only $45/person to enter, and the RSVP bike ride in August is only $100+ but I have to register now and lacrosse for both boys starts soon and I just bought a $150 lacrosse helmet (ARE YOU KIDDING ME??). And no schedules at this point really mean anything, because did I mention I'll have two boys in lacrosse? Well, they'll have games every weekend, too, but who knows when or where. Put that on a spreadsheet, why don't you? And Alli just texted to remind me not to forget to walk down to the fortune cookie factory today and buy the garbage bag size of "unfortune cookies" (flawed, flat factory rejects) that we have stupidly made famous at her birthday parties the last six years. And NOW who gets to carry that home on the bus tonight??

Deep breaths. Calm blue ocean. Everybody wants a piece of me. It is good to be loved. Claustrophobic, but good. Really, really claustrophobic. More claustrophobic than good, this week.

But the thing of it is, the only thing that has changed is that my teeth hurt. Life is life, and this week has been no different, really. And so, I will just pop another percocet (Mommy's happy pills) and turn on Mommy's happy light. Here's what I texted Kim from bed this morning:
Sunshine in a box!

Sunshine in a bottle!
(Crap, I had to go to facebook to grab this picture, but it really was relevant.) 

See, I'm all claustrophobic, but I'm still texting pictures to Kim. Mr. W. told me at some point recently that I'm his best friend. "Kim's my best friend," I said. Kim and I were laughing about this, and decided it is because she lives out of state and is inaccessible, and frequently turns me down when I want to talk to her. Take a lesson, Mr. W. When Kim and I were talking about my plans with Mr. W. for the weekend, I said we were going out Wednesday and probably Friday nights. Bike rides on Saturday and Sunday mornings. Kim said maybe he'd turn me down for Friday night, being busy with his own plans and then I'd be all turned on. "That would be soooo hot," I said. "But it will never happen." Didn't, of course.

But my problem isn't Mr. W. It's these frickin sore teeth, it's two solid weeks of fog, and a distinct vitamin D deficiency. But my mommy loaned me her HappyLite, and percocet dulls the pain, and today is Friday *and* payday and all is well in my world. Or it will be. :)

(Note: the author has a documented case of Seasonal Affected Disorder and lives in Seattle. It is January, and the weather is bleak and miserable. Which is not bad, it's the fact that the weather will remain like this until late June that hurts her so much. The author knows she must one day move to another climate to save her sanity, but at this time, a steady job with a great pension plan and a divorce decree dictating what school district, let alone what state, she must live in, preclude any weather-based improvement to her mental well-being. "Oh well," she thinks, "my youngest is already seven, surely the next eleven years of this will fly by." )

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

A Very Bikey Birthday

Enough talk about the birthday, already! But I have had one more post in mind, and I finally almost sorta pulled my act together with the pictures I needed. I cheated a little bit - I grabbed one picture from the is much classier than any picture I would have taken, haha.

My friend Nancy gave me my first birthday present. She said she wanted to beat Mr. W. to the punch and give this to me before he did. Mine, and Sabrina's, first reaction was, "Oh God, it's not an engagement ring, is it?" Hahaha.

Nope, it was a bicycle built for two, kitchen towel style:

Classy picture. Not mine, of course.
Mr. W. showered me with gifts for my birthday - not the least of which was a three-day weekend away! He got me a full set of Pampered Chef knives, which I have since gashed my hand open with TWICE since receiving. He notices a lot of things, and one thing he noticed when cooking at my house was I was basically down to using my teeth to cut, slice or chop anything at home. And my two hand gashes prove that I am totally unused to sharp knives, haha.

But the gift I'm here to write about is the beautiful silver necklace he got for me and gave me while we were away. (I got the knives at home before we left, presumably so I wouldn't be armed on our trip - it was our first weekend away, after all. And our first sleepover! He was wise to check for weapons, especially since I am sleep walker/talker and he was a strange man in a strange hotel room.)

This picture is so fresh, it's almost live-action. 
Beautiful, yes? It has little hearts at the center of the wheels. He lives up to his nickname, Mr. Wonderful. :) More on him later. (Do I look so exhausted? You have no idea how much pain I've been in since my stupid snow tubing catastrophe. I've been taking percocet for ages now...ugh. I just feel...awful.)

Because now I have to show you the bikey-birthday gift that has been cracking me the heck up since I received it. You may know from me talking about Mr. W. here that this man is SPOILING me. Like seriously, who was born a princess and just found out about it? ME! He has done 100 little things around my house and spent goodness knows how much time working on my bike. If he's at my house and sees something that is broken, next time he comes over, he's brought whatever he needs to fix it. I bought a snow shovel at Costco. He said it was a very heavy one - I said I didn't care because a) I just buy what Costco tells me to buy, and b) I'm thinking that the snow shoveler in my household is Blake, not me. (Yup, I'm that kind of mom.) Blake is always wanting to build up his muscles, ipso facto, the Costco shovel is just fiiiiiinnnnnnnnneeeee.

Nope, next time he comes over, Mr. W. has found a better snow shovel at Lowe's. Steel blade at the front, like my Costco one, but much lighter and more maneuverable. Says Blake will appreciate the difference if he ever knew about it, haha.

My point being, I'm being completely spoiled. I will have to be verrrrrrrrry careful about this, because, well, let's just say that was an issue in my marriage. I still haven't actually decided where I fall on this issue.

But anyway, my hilarious birthday gift. You also need to know that I have never, ever had a bumper sticker on any of the seventeen cars I've owned in my lifetime. Not a one. I am not a bumper sticker girl. Kim, my birthday gift benefactor, knows this and says I'm under no pressure to put this on my car. (I also don't wear clothes that say things. This has made my conversion to being a fancy cyclist difficult because I look at those "kits" and think, ugh. Ugh. Yuck. Maybe I really am a mountain biker at heart. I don't want to dress funny.) But what has had me dying laughing is the note...oh, she knows me (and Mr. W.) too well...

You have no idea how long and hard I have laughed about that silly note. Priceless.
I showed it to Mr. W. who also cracked up and wondered if he's maybe spoiling me too much. Eh, maybe. He did say he'd put it on for me, though. No thanks, I got this one handled, buddy. :) I think I may have my first bumper sticker! (Thank God it's really a window sticker - that is much less traumatic for me than a bumper sticker!)

Friday, January 18, 2013

Report Back on a Very Fun Weekend

What a fun weekend! Of course, it was almost a week ago now - but I have had issues to work through, which I will share in this long-winded post. :) For my clarity of thought (I'll pause here while I, and you, laugh about that oxymoron as it pertains to me, haha)...maybe I'll just start off by listing.

- First off, Kim told me that if I don't use that picture of Mr. W and I as my blog background, she will. It seems stranger to me for us to be the background picture on *her* blog than my own, so we'll try it here. No promises that it's staying, though. :) When we went snowshoeing last weekend, Mr. W was chatting with a couple that had just finished the 3.7 mile loop. Turns out the husband was a professional photographer who was scouting the route for the snowshoe 5K/10K the next day (ahem, I am done talking about that one - you know, the snowshoe 5K I didn't get to do? haha). So he took our first picture together. We both agreed we got a couple better ones off my iPhone, but it's the thought that counts. :)

- Thursday was my actual birthday, thank you very much for the birthday wishes! It was hard to discern my real birth date out of the week, because we celebrated it so dang many times! With Mr. W and the kids, with my parents, with Mr. W. alone, and tonight I'm celebrating last night I celebrated with my friends when we go see Book of Mormon. YAY!! I have been waiting for this night FOR YEARS. Can't wait to see this one. It was as funny as I had hoped it would be! I loved it!

- So for my real birthday, Mr. W and I went out to sushi. Yum. :) We made out in my dentist's parking lot because my son had stayed home an extra night to do some homework on the computer. So I had a curfew and I made out in a car, both events combining to make me feel like I was just turning 17 instead of 43.

- Friday morning Mr. W picked me up early and we headed out of town. Yay for long weekends! We stopped at REI to return and exchange my cycling jacket, which had a defective zipper, and rent snowshoes for me. Oops, except we forgot to rent snowshoes, so we got 15 miles down the road and turned back for them.

- We stopped in the hokey little Bavarian village of Leavenworth, a place I can take or leave. I did buy buffalo beef jerky there, which was tasty! I fought over it shared it with Blake when I got home. Blake is a serious jerky hound - that kid loves his dried meat. Mr. W and I had fun in Leavenworth, just window shopping at cheesy little tourist traps. I'm not much of a fan. :)

- Hello! I do like wineries, though, and our first stop in Lake Chelan was at Tsillan Cellars winery. We bought a case of Gewurtz because it was only five dollars a bottle! Yay for closeouts! It is quite tasty.

- The hotel was great - I was nervous because I can be (whispering) a bit of a hotel snob. I get skeeved out easily at hotels. This place was nice, though, and skeeve free. That night we walked down to the marina for Winterfest activities, which were lame on Friday night. So we walked out to the utter darkness to watch the stars. Very sweet. It was like nine degrees. Eep.

- The weekend was full of lots of sweet surprises, starting with a couple fancy little chocolates waiting for me back at the hotel room. Saturday morning he made me tea (okay, we all know I'm a little addicted to Earl Grey) in my own new size-venti mug. Mine broke awhile ago and I have refused to buy one until I could find a venti-size. Mr. W found one!

- We snowshoed on Saturday. I love snowshoeing!! Oh my, so fun. All that crunchy snow, and it was gorgeous and sunny and cold. See pic above. Here's another good one of Mr. W and one of me thrown in for good measure:

I still gots some head issues, because I am wearing five layers but still think I look fat in this picture.
Crazy don't just disappear, ladies. ;)
- After snowshoeing, the world ended. Well, not really. But close! We stopped at the tiny ski area on the way back down from the snowshoe trail. We decided to go snow tubing, it was only $8 and they were open a couple more hours. VERY FIRST RUN, I hit a hard bump at the bottom of the hill and went FLYING like a rocket. Landed face first. My mouth filled with blood immediately, and I truly lay there thinking, "I am going to have to pick up my teeth from the snow, and I am not going to lose my isht when I do it." Ugh.

- Fortunately, I sustained no permanent injuries. It did really suck, though. When we got back home, I was seeing spots (because my eyeballs were so shook up, my ophthalmologist said). I had a head and neck x-ray. I already had a root canal appointment, so the endodontist checked my teeth, which were jarred a bit loose but not perilously so. It really sucked. I shredded the inside of my mouth:

- Well, anyway, that sucked, but the good news is Mr. W is good in a crisis, e.g. he did not start screaming and suffocating me with professions of love. And, he's a real "positive outlook" guy, but he wisely did not tell me how great it was that I only sustained this type of injury, haha. He was great under pressure. We went back to the hotel, I laid down for awhile and then...

- Chinese wish lanterns!! Highlight of the weekend! They were the coolest thing ever. :)

Funny story on this one: Matt and I were holding our lanterns, which were struggling to get away. I wanted a picture, but my phone was in my pocket. I was going to ask the man next to me to reach into my pocket to get my phone. I said, "Hey, can I ask you a big favor?" and he automatically reached to hold my lantern while I got my phone. Yeah, we could do it that way, too, haha. I reached into my own pocket and then he took our picture. :)

- The rest of the weekend was wonderful, too. I'm going to wrap this one up because it's taken me a week to get this far, haha.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

For the Love of Pete

I want to update on my super fun weekend with Mr. W, but we only have one computer in the house. And three children. I *know* in my heart I am the grown-up and I make the rules, but OMG, I can't get near the computer to save my life.

We had a great time. More details to follow. :) Expect a long post, if I can ever get near a keyboard!

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

What I'm Thinkin'

Hahaha, the glove post was so long, I think I wiped myself out. :) So long, and so RELEVANT and PERTINENT, wouldn't you say?

I'll just throw some stuff out there today:

- I got reprimanded by my first grader's teacher for not signing off on his sticker chart on Monday. Actually, I got reprimanded *and* the instructions were highlighted to aid in my comprehension. :) This is not the first time that happened - actually, any day you miss gets highlighted. I especially love that this sticker chart goes back and forth between my X and me, so both of us get to see the other's failings highlighted in pink.

Bad mommy. Instructions were clear.
- My 7yo is very ADHD and kind of a late bloomer. He really struggles academically a lot. But more and more, he is maturing and verbalizing his thoughts and it just blows me away. It really shows that even when a kid is not a talker, they have so much going on in their minds. After Christmas, he made the most *persuasive* argument to me that he should have his own XBox and TV in his room. It was well thought out, passionate, persuasive and fair. And funny as heck. I almost fell for it. Speaking points ranged from "it's not right that Blake gets to decide when to let me play with him," to "and I already have a wire in my room for a TV." On Monday night I took just my 7yo to the store, and during the long ride his questions included an in-depth discussion about buying a house. He started with "How do you buy a house?" and I sort of glossed over it, but he pressed for details. I never thought I'd be explaining mortgages and the difference between buying and renting to a first grader, haha. We ended with long discusssions about how houseboats are built and secured to the land. Wow. Kid can barely read a word, but he has got his own deep thoughts going on, no doubt about it.

- My flat new tummy is hawt. :) The scars are significant, but scars have never bothered me at all. Interestingly, I won't be downsizing in jeans and bottoms, I think. Plus jeans and such are fitting differently with these bad ass cycling muscles. On top, I'm mostly in smalls and mediums and that is driven by my bust. I am practicing getting used to this being my new permanent size. Me likey. I think when you have weight loss surgery, they should give you a coupon for post-loss plastic surgery, because this is freaking awesome. :) The current complication is that the scar is really tight. Lots of times I feel like I'm not standing up straight, and when I stretch my back - holy smokes, feel the burn, baby. Ouch.

- Mr. W. is killing me softly with his love. When we're together - totally awesome. (Well, mostly awesome - he is too into me, then, too, but he is actually super easy to talk to and that hasn't been a problem.) I'm going to break his little texting fingers, however. Stop with all the little affirmations. I-know-you-are-into-me-you-tell-me-every-time-you-pick-up-the-friggin-phone. Karma is biting me on the ass big time with this one, because I *get* how Greg felt with me. "I like you so much, please don't f'ing blow it by liking me this much." This weekend away will be a real test: I will either succumb or we will have a really awkward long drive home, haha. Look for an update early next week (unless I am in jail). I do know that I have a helluva great time with him and then during our time apart I am clenching my teeth a bit. And thinking, thinking, thinking about Lance Armstrong, and what's he doing, and how fun with Lance is uncomplicated and happy, and leaves me wanting more.

This is a really good updated version. Listen.

- Of course, with Lance Armstrong, there is no more to be had - nor would I want it from him. He is goofy texts, solid biking advice and support, and casual grown-up play time. Even once, he blew off plans for a Sunday and I chastised him by text. "Sorry, I'm not a good boyfriend," he wrote back. (*snort*) I told him that letting me know in advance wasn't being a boyfriend, it was being a nice person. (p.s. Lance Armstrong will not acknowledge my birthday - which he could not because to acknowledge, he would have to know...which I'm pretty sure he does not think I *have* a birthday, haha. But we celebrated his 40th in style last September.)

- Can the real Lance Armstrong sue me for using him as a pseudonym and talking about him as if he were a man-toy to take off a shelf?

- Between the above youtube video, which I've now listened to 10 times, and I feel this strange urge to go dig up Carly Simon songs (I know it's not Carly Simon's song, but I think I am reverting to my parents' house and my childhood here, haha) and thinking and talking (oh, and I'll say it: missing) about Lance Armstrong, well, this post has completely run out of steam. :)

- I still talk to Lance Armstrong, by the way. I have even told Mr. W. about him, but perhaps I didn't elaborate much beyond his cycling prowess and what a good source of knowledge and support he has been for me. :) LA falls firmly in the category of friend, I really do enjoy him for what he is.

- I'm skipping my Wednesday night ride tonight, ostensibly to pack for the weekend, as tomorrow is my birthday and Mr. W. is taking me out on the town after work. Also because it is raining like cats and dogs. But mostly because I'm spending Thursday - Sunday with Mr. W. and I just need one night of quiet to myself. And I'm a little pissed that I may be doing exactly what I didn't want to do when I started seeing Mr. W. - screw up how much I am loving biking. I'm afraid we might be at the beginning of the end, here...

Or not. Maybe I'll "change my mind..."
(This picture is from the original movie "The Stepford Wives," after
she has been programmed to just be the perfect wife and mother the way we're s'posedta be)

Monday, January 7, 2013

Egg Face

And in this case, I don't actually mean one of my favoritest blogs The World According to Eggface. I mean me, splattered with egg all over my face, looking like a goofball. Oy.

I bought cycling gloves on Friday night. Seriously, I was not getting on that bike again with my hands as cold as they were on previous rides. NO MORE. But finding the right cold/wet weather gloves has been a real PITA (pain in the arse) for me. If they're too bulky, I feel like I can't control the bike as well. I already struggle with controlling the bike enough, haha. Refer to countless earlier posts about not wanting to fall. Or see other earlier posts about having fallen (okay, those were low-speed "getting used to clipless pedal" falls...they don't really count).

Anyway. I went to the little independent bike shop. I'm totally crushing on the young boy who works there. I do this, actually. I have a couple of cute little barista boys in my building that I crush on, too. I like to think of it as "hot older woman ready to school these young boys," but to them it probably looks more like, "Oh, isht, the cougar is back again." Ah well, life is for fun, yes?? Oh yes, there is also a boy who works in the building who I have pined for for awhile now - my friends and I estimate he might be 25, hahahaha. (I doubt it.)

But, that's not why I go to the overly-expensive independent bike shop. Well, I guess mostly it is. I like the guy, and it's only about a mile from my house. I try to go there first when I am bike-shopping, although they do tend to be more expensive and have less selection. Plus, my boyfriend is new to the state and not well-familiar with riding around here and I feel gave me bum advice on my first bike light purchase, thus wasting my money. There was another purchase, too, that I felt like ended up being a waste of money. Can't think of what it was.

Oh, hello, I was going to tell you about having egg on my face. So. I went to the bike shop, I bought two pairs of gloves: skinny wool liners and a bulkier pair to go over them.

Skinny wool ones.

Bulkier outer ones.
Well, by the time I talked to Mr. W about it that evening, I decided I should have bought the bigger size outer gloves, because they were tight over the liners. Then Mr. W. pointed out that the outer gloves were not waterproof, which was contrary to my need for waterproof gloves on rainy rides. Hrumph.

Okay. Back they'll go. Later that evening, I stopped at REI and I bought two pairs of waterproof warm and fuzzy gloves with funky fingers. I crossed my fingers (before putting on the gloves) hoping I'd be able to work through the funky fingers issue.

Cuh-razy, man.
I bought two pairs because I am THAT PICKY about how gloves fit: in general, but most especially while on my bike. I tried them on with and without the wool liner that I had purchased at the independent bike shop earlier that night. 

Okay. I'm getting to the egg on my face part, really. Imagine me at REI with 2/3 of my children, trying and trying and trying on gloves. Liner. No liner. Small. Medium. Every variation of these three pairs. (Except Small on Medium, or Medium on Small, I didn't go that crazy.)

And the whoooooooollllllllllllllllllllleeeeeeeeee time, I am so conscious about not losing these wool liners that I bought at another store but brought into REI specifically to try on with their gloves. Don't lose the brand new gloves.

Okay. I bought two pairs of funky-fingered gloves, and I also bought a hundred dollar pair of snow pants (IMPULSE BUY!) for my trip to Lake Chelan with Mr. W. this weekend. Umm, I think I'll return those. I have like ZERO use for snow pants. Well, except I did wear them to ride on Saturday. Comfy! But extravagant. We'll see. Oh, and a $40 pair of Merrell hiking boots that were on clearance. IMPULSE BUY! 

The whole decadent shopping spree cost me $85 in gloves at store #1 and $202 at REI. Oops. But I knew I was returning at least two pairs of gloves: one to REI and one to the independent store. And by the time I got home (wearing my new funky-fingered gloves) I knew I'd return BOTH pairs to the independent store. Even though I also knew this would break my bike-store-boyfriend's heart. I do not know how that store stays open - it is so dead - unless he has a whole cadre of middle-aged biking women who just adore him. (Bitches. Stay away from my man.)

Alright, so now my registration fees for the Cascade bike training series and the RSVP (Ride from Seattle to Vancouver BC and Party) are gone - oops - that would have been about $250 bucks or so. No worries. I'm taking back three pairs of gloves and maybe the snow pants. Seriously, those Merrell boots were originally $115 and I got them brand new for $39 - I'm keeping those puppies.

I can't find a pic, but they are a-dor-able.
Well, I'll probably keep them, anyway. They are a 7.5 and I really should have an 8. But they're cute. And $40!

Still with me? I'm home now, and I'm assembling my return bag. Two pairs back to the bike shop, one pair back to REI. I'll do that in the morning.

Where. the. flying. f. are. the. wool. liner. gloves?

"OH!" Reid (my 7yo) says. "I told you to pick them up from the rock wall! You shouldn't have left them there!"

Hmm. I think it is valiant that he falls on the sword so quickly, but I distinctly remember taking the gloves back from him while we were in the store.

I must have left them at the dang cash register. I call REI, but they're already closed. Thankfully, we were in right before closing and I'll call them first thing in the morning and everything will be A-OK. 

I am so pissed at myself for losing these gloves. Argh. I call REI at 9:00 a.m., but they don't open until 10:00 a.m. At 10:00 a.m. I'm in the thick of a bike ride with Mr. W. and Ms. V., the group leader for my regular Wednesday night ride. If I ever finish telling you that I lost, and then found, a pair of gloves, I'm posting separately about this ride and my weekend with Mr. W.

(See, this whole post could have been "I thought I lost a brand new pair of gloves, but no worries, I found them." But you have to hang in for another page or two to get to that point.)

Okay, so at 10a, everyone's waiting on me and I call REI. Nope, no gloves in the lost and found. They'll keep an eye out for them. My suspicious heart says "Yes, keep an eye on them as you are wearing them, GLOVE THIEVES!" I ask to talk to a manager, who is sweet, but also claims to not be wearing my brand new gloves. I explain that they are brand new and I lost them. She seems to be not as moved by this plight as I am.

Over the course of the day, I tell myself things like, "Well, at least they were only the $25 gloves." As opposed to the $50 gloves or one of the $37 pairs. It's small consolation. I'm having big-time buyer's remorse and I am freaking at the financial pinch of both pursuing my real love and one true reason for living, e.g. cycling, and...deep sigh...feeding and housing my children. Seriously, who has nearly $300 to drop on gloves and isht like that?

Well, REI says they'll look for the gloves. But you know as soon as I finished that bike ride (also known as a Hilly MF'er - more later), I drag Mr. W. down to REI and we search the store. No gloves. I inquire about the lost and found. Nope. I leave a note with all mine and the gloves' info with the cashier. I am in full pout.

Here, Mr. W. was very nice and helped me look and only yakked one woman's ear off about the STP (Seattle to Portland ride) because he happened to overhear her buying cycling-something-or-'nother and he gave her an earful of what I would call unsolicited advice...hmm, but I was in full glove-search dither so I really cannot judge her perception of the exchange. I walked away, hoping to find my gloves.

Dammit. I give up.

We stop at the bike shop and I break my bike shop boyfriend's heart, both by being seen with another man (that will keep him interested in me, though, spurred on by the challenge) and by returning the remaining pair of gloves I haven't lost. It is a sad exchange. The men mask their pain by talking about handlebar tape. I don't even think I'm supposed to call them handlebars...everything on a bike has a different name when you're a grown-up. Anyway, they push through the pain, and Mr. W. is buying handlebar tape. He asks me for my frequent buyer card so I get a punch for the purchase. Because he's just that nice.

Well, I can't find that damn thing, either. Even though I was JUST THERE the day before. ARGH! I am so frustrated. I search my purse and wallet, nothing.

There is one pocket inside my purse. It's my panties pocket. You know, I have had more occasion than you would think to carry my panties in my purse. Every Wednesday before leaving work when I change into my bike shorts in preparation for my group ride - there go the panties into the panties pocket. What am I supposed to do, wear them over my head?

I can feel the panties in that pocket from my earlier Wednesday ride, but now I'M PISSED and totally willing to open the pocket in front of these boys. They should keep their eyes to themselves, anyway. And, truth be told, I'd show either of them my panties, if asked.

Oh, I know you know this movie.
THE GLOVES! I FOUND THE GLOVES!! Look how carefully and painstakingly I (utterly subconsciously) put them in a protected zippered pocket in my purse so they wouldn't get lost! What a responsible adult I am!!

Seriously, I'm glad the store is dead inside because I yelled with glee! And Mr. W. and my boyfriend, err, bike shop boyfriend, celebrated with me! Right up until I told Bike Shop Boyfriend I was returning THOSE gloves, too. That kind of hurt his feelings, and I think he sort of wished I hadn't found them. Aw, don't be that way, baby. You know I'll come back to you again.

This was a good test for Mr. W., since he pretty much got to see me unravel from happy glove owner to despondent and broke single mom who is never, ever allowed to have any fun and life really sucks, and then back to joyful crazy lady dancing in bike shop. I kid you not (I am tired of saying "Seriously" in this post)...this man is getting the wholly unvarnished me to take or leave. Stick a fork in me, I am done.

And we all lived happily ever after. Except I forgot to call REI and tell them I found the gloves, so they can stop worrying. And I did take away money from the independent shop. And I do probably plan to return the snow pants to REI after wearing. And when Mr. W. said something sensitive like, "Is there anything I can do to make this better for you?" I did bark at him, "PUH-LEEZE do not talk to me like a self-help book."

So, I won and everyone else lost. But sometimes that's enough. And Mr. W. laughed about the self-help book comment - really, either he has a good sense of humor or I am crushing his soul by not allowing this kind and sensitive talk.

Closing sidebar: In the "five love languages" (um, acts of service - yes, do that one - a lot - it's my favorite, really this is the one I like - a lot; touch - well, yes, I love this one lots but really, Mr. W. we are still working on our boundaries because apparently you just touch a whole lot all the time like when I am "having a seizure" looking for my gloves, as my daughter describes me; gifts - well, those are nice but don't do a whole lot for me, go back to acts of service, seriously certainly, when you helped me clean my roof that was like the sexiest thing ever; quality time - well, yes, that's okay, too, but probably not a biggie for me; and then there's WORDS OF AFFIRMATION. Okay, don't bother with that one. :) I don't like feeling like I'm being "handled" (we always hate most what we need most, hahaha). Mr. W. lays these on a bit thick - or maybe he just says them at all and I have that low of a tolerance for them. He is so awesome, and really, I wish he'd realize if he didn't like me quite so much, or want to be with me quite so much, or be quite so supportive - well, I'd be all over him like white on rice. And TRULY, it is relationship karma because I see now that this is EXACTLY what I did to Greg, and I can see how he must have weighed through everything (I am not defending Greg, who was an asshat) and thought "DAMMIT, I like you so much but..." and that's where I'm at with Mr. W. When I am with him, I am crazy about him and just when I'm about to fall for the guy he hits those He's So Into You afterburners and I'm backpedaling.

Ah, we'll see. But! I! Found! My! Gloves!!

Friday, January 4, 2013

Biker Chick(en)

Wednesday night, I bailed early on in my weekly night ride with my group. It was cold outside - too warm for ice, maybe, but cold enough that I was worried about it. We were doing a new route, and it was a hill challenge. The route started with a ride through what is basically a bog with a bridge built through it. It was pure frost and ice.

I rode through it, unhappily. I don't want to fall. Logically, I know I won't bust open like Jiffy Pop, but you weren't there when my doctor reopened my incision back when I was having that fluid complication. I sort of busted open like Jiffy Pop. Ew. And I didn't even feel it, weird. One of those things that I shouldn't have watched him do, like when I watched my breast biopsy on ultra-sound years ago. Blech.

Who knows what's holding me together, but it's not duct tape.
I decided, riding across that ice, thinking about years earlier when I slipped on a wet meter cover on a rainy sidewalk and broke my ankle in two places...if anything would make me afraid of biking, it would be falling on ice and my guts busting wide open.*

*I know this probably wouldn't happen. But still. It might.

So I turned back, and Strava only logged a measly 1.9 miles. And Mr. W. turned back with me, haha, which I am certain had tongues wagging in that little group! When he said he would turn back, too, one of the men looked aghast and said "WHY?" (Bailing on a bike ride: very poor form, and with a regular group, leaves you wide open for mockery and derision, which I received later via email from the group leader, haha.) Poor Mr. W., I told him were are not a secret, but I am not interested in being the goofy biking and holding hands couple on the rides. :) He's overshot on the cloak and dagger bit...I just told the guy, "He's my carpool." Which is sort of true, as Mr. W. usually throws my bike on top of his car since it's easier than me cramming in my back seat or getting out my bike rack. He has a cool roof rack, 'cause that's how he rolls.

So, Mr. W. is taking me away for my birthday next weekend. Yay for weekend getaways! We're going to Lake Chelan Winterfest. It's fun how this all came about - I had mentioned that there is this little festival that I want to see sometime because they release Chinese lanterns over the lake (oooo, I saw this in the movie Tangled, I wanna see it in real life, not animation, haha).
I wanna see this.
So, the next time we talked, he said that Winterfest is on my birthday weekend, and he'd like to take me. Very sweet! He booked a place and told me to take a day off work, and away we go!!

Ah, I am having fun with him. I really enjoy being with him a lot. I'm wrestling a little bit, but I'm not sure if that's me or him. He is soooo nice. And a total enginerd. I mean, he loves to do the cycling, and he's fun and everything...I'm just not sure. I'm rolling with it for now (biking analogy, you catch that?). He is *really* smitten with me - that gets a little overwhelming. For you long-time readers, you'll understand when I say that I am dating me when I was with Greg. Totally lovestruck. I can see why this got on Greg's nerves so much, hahaha. Wants to be with me every free minute.

So, when I'm with him - actually in his physical presence, it's pretty great. He's thoughtful and sweet. He's touchy, like me, but a bit overly so. He listens and learns though. Seriously, I had to tell him to go sit down when I cooked dinner the other night: I do not need a backrub while frying burgers. :)

I was looking for a Buster Bluth backrub clip, but this will have to do. Had me in stitches, anyway. :)

Enginerd. I had to ask my enginerd girlfriend if her type really deserved love. She says yes, but I'm not entirely convinced yet. I swear he referred to hanging out with my family as a "cultural experience."

But...the many positives. I am so totally myself with him. I am happy and comfortable and laughing and having a good time. I walk around naked, I swear when the urge hits me (oops, this urge hits often), I do not worry about sagging hangy boobs. I get to be me, and he likes me. I like him, too. He overuses his vocabulary, exactly like I do (good lord, we could both use some language parsing). He laughs at himself and lets me laugh at him (um, this is crucial, as laughing at my friends is one of my most favorite pasttimes, hahaha). He's overly serious and overly supportive (again - can I just get a nice MIDDLE OF THE SPECTRUM MAN once in awhile). But this morning when I texted that I went to bed early and he blathered something about he's glad I got down time because we all need that and he's glad I'm having "special family time" tonight with my kids (HAHAHAHA - does he mean that I will make them help me clean the house and that I will not be beating them??)...and I just snapped and wrote back,

YOU GOOFBALL - CAN'T YOU JUST SAY "I'm glad you got to veg out and fall asleep in front of the TV like you were dying to do"! SO SERIOUS FOR A FRIDAY MORNING!*

*I did not use all caps. I save that for the blog.

And he appropriately said, "Haha, guilty as charged. Sorry!"

I think he's teachable. I feel a little like a science experiment sometimes:
When backrub was initiated while Subject was leaning over hot skillet, subject's muscles tensed rather than the expected relaxation. Subject then lashed out verbally, demanding Researcher take a seated position across the room. Facial expressions, including furrowed brow and downturned mouth, were observed and recorded. Subject visibly relaxed and engaged in spontaneous laughter while Researcher maintained adequate personal space during "cooking"* exercise.
*Note: Subject continues to prepare frozen foods (in this case, something described as "garden burgers") and describe her actions as "cooking." Possible denial behavior, possible lack of knowledge of genuine food preparation skills. Further analysis required.
Anyway - he's fun and I am enjoying myself. Not sure where this is going, if anywhere, and I do admit that I have been missing Lance Armstrong a bit, who really doesn't give much of a isht what I've been doing or what I think, but he is more than happy to pick me up and carry me whereever I want to go, or just drag me by my hair if that's more to my liking, haha. There's your big dose of over-testosteroney bicycling goodness for ya. (Um, the flip side of that is, of course, that he is a chain-smoking nicotine patch wearer who is also an alcoholic and probably technically addicted to cycling and other things, too. And he really doesn't give much of a isht about me, though he can feign well from time to time - which I think of as his version of foreplay, hahaha "Hey, how have you been?")

Middle of the spectrum, please. I do love that Mr. W. can easily laugh at himself - and he's comfortable and confident with who he is, which, as I've said, is a total enginerd. And I think as long as I get to call bullisht when it gets too deep, we'll be okay. And he called total bullisht on me this week when I was pressing to sign us up for a SNOWSHOE 10K! at Winterfest. No way. Do you know how far that is in snowshoes? Have you ever snowshoed? (Well, no.) Nuh-uh. And why pay $80 in entry fees to do something we were already going to do by ourselves? He said we can spend the $80 on the wine tours instead. Masterfully played, sir, well done.

Hrumph. Well, if you know me, it's in your best interest to stand your ground or I can be umm, a little bit steamrollery, just a little. And I don't like to be told no, or not get what I want. But my respect for him shot through the roof over that silly 10K, because I am sussing him out, making sure he has a bit of that certain je ne sais quoi (okay, I'll just say it: backbone) that has appealed to me in the post-divorce world, after steamrolling my X into a beaten down hull of a man. (Oops. I'm sorry about that.)

Bet this post is more than you bargained for, but obviously, my mental gears are working hard today. (Another cycling reference for ya there.)