Monday, March 30, 2009

Fuzzy gender lines

A few weeks ago, Ian was taking a bath and I picked up a tub toy, filled it with water and squirted it. Boring story, right? Oh, did I forget to mention that disgusting black filth came squirting out of that toy? I know, I know. Ewwww. I thought the same thing. And with that, all the squirty toys were instantly tossed in the trash.

So the next day I did what any red-blooded American mom would do, I grabbed the kiddo and headed to the toy store to re-stock the tub with NON-squirting toys. We have a great, family owned toy store near our house that encourages kids to actually play with sample toys. Needless to say, Ian took one look at the place and went ka-ray-zee. He was grabbing toys and running from aisle to aisle with me trailing behind, scrambling to keep up. Suddenly he stopped and I nearly ran him over. He looked at me. He looked at a baby doll. He looked at me. Then he leapt at the baby doll, gave it a squeeze and handed it to me. I said "thank you" then gave the doll a squeeze too before putting it back. He picked it up again, gave it a squeeze and handed it to me. We repeated this routine for some time. With every other toy in the store, he spent a few seconds banging it around before running off. But with the baby doll, he was deliberate and insistent. I wish I knew what was running through his little head! Finally I scooped him up, paid for his new tub toys and we were off.

I have thought about those moments in the toy store ever since. He hasn't been around many babies younger than himself. Yet he was drawn to that doll and wanted me to snuggle with it. Where did he pick up those behaviors? One thing is for certain, kids are amazing little creatures. It's best not to underestimate their powers of observation. I finally decided that Ian should have a baby doll of his very own. I saw a glimpse into his nurturing side and that is a trait I want to foster.

So when I was shopping at Target this weekend, I swung by the doll aisle. It was a veritable sea of pink. There were dolls that cried, talked, crawled, drank from a bottle, peed, even pooped. But I didn't want any of that which left only one choice, a simple baby doll in a pink hat and blanket from the "Little Mommy" collection. I paid for it without a second thought. When I got home, the hubby was on the phone and remarked "for some reason, Lori bought a doll." "It's for Ian," I responded. "For some reason, Lori bought a pink doll for our son," he commented. "They don't come in blue," I replied.

Though that was the last I heard of it, the writing was on the wall. I knew that this doll would get conveniently misplaced. So the next day, Ian and I returned to that little neighborhood toy store to find a more suitable option. We found a simple bald baby doll wearing a striped shirt and denim overalls...for twice the price. The salesperson asked if I wanted it gift wrapped and I pointed at Ian and told her there was no need, it was for him. She congratulated me a little too heartily as she rang up my purchase saying he might grow up to be a pediatrician. Mkay, sure.

I swung by Target and returned the "Little Mommy" doll before heading home. And as I was driving, I was turning over this scenario in my head. It just doesn't make sense to me. Why shouldn't a boy play with a doll wearing pink? My hubby, a stay at home dad, carried around a baby dressed in pink after our daughter was born and no one thought twice about that. So why isn't it natural for my son pretend to be a daddy and play with a pink doll? Is it just me or does this little societal quirk seem strange to you too?

Monday, March 23, 2009

So I have this friend...

I have a friend who wanted to lose 25 lbs by her birthday which is now one month away. Anyway, at this point, my friend has lost and gained the same 5 lbs so many times that she's about to give up. Here are a few COMPLETELY MADE UP signs that my friend's plan isn't going to happen OR SOMETHING. Remember these examples are totally fabricated and in no way represent reality. Also, the names have been changed to protect the innocent.

  • Half of her 20 minute workout this morning was the warm up cool down.
  • She tried Lisa Rinna's "Dance Body Beautiful: Learn and Burn" workout and Lisa's black unitard with gold belt and boring, repetitious movements make my friend flashback to the Jane Fonda videos of old.
  • She finished exercising and there is not a single drop of sweat on her workout clothes.
  • She is routinely consuming a serving of soy chocolate pudding mixed with vegan chocolate chips. At 9:15pm. And chasing it with a handful of organic corn nuts.
  • Her hubby looks over from the couch and says "I can't believe you just ate an entire bag of [baked] barbecue potato chips in one sitting." And she responded "I know, they need to make bigger bags."


Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Planning for the worst, hoping for the best

My company announced that layoffs would be coming in the next couple of months. Even though I don't know if my job will be impacted, we've put the brakes on spending. Things we previously considered "necessities" have been downgraded to "luxuries" and eliminated. It's been a good exercise even though I fear we're effectively screwing the economy. Sorry everyone.

Here are some of the cuts we've made recently.

Our pipes are old and our water is not fluoridated so the lovely folks at Cascade Springs had been bringing 5 gallon bottles of clean, fluoridated water to our doorstep. Clearly a necessity, right? Wrong. We've installed a faucet filter and are getting fluoride drops for free from the pharmacy.

We live in a wooded area and thus have problems with pests. Ants, yellow jackets, four-footed-furry-friends, the works. In order to ward off these unwanted visitors, the fine folks from Barrier Pest Control spray toxic chemicals all around our property once a quarter. Not exactly the healthiest choice but hey, neither is having mice scamper through your pantry. Since the hubby is doing most of the work (he is the Great White Hunter you know), he has decided to take over all extermination responsibilities. Beware critters.

Gone are the housekeepers. (This has been the hardest cutback by far!) Buh bye magazine subscriptions. So long Netflix.

It really hasn't been that hard to cut out these little extras. In fact, I'm wondering why we needed them in the first place. And since those were so easy, I've got a few other ideas rattling around in my brain. I'm considering eliminating our land line (except we bundle this service so I'm not sure if that would save any money in the long run). I'm going to talk to my hair stylist to see if we could do color every other appointment.

Although this has been a good exercise, my hope is that my job is secure and we don't need to make anymore cuts. Frankly, that next layer of expenses wouldn't be as easy to cut and would impact our standard of living. Bottom line, it would hurt a little...but not a lot.

How about you? Has this economy caused you to make changes? Any advice for saving money?

Friday, March 13, 2009


Busy doesn't begin to describe my life the last couple of weeks. From work to vacation, to LOTS of work to the stomach flu to LOTS MORE work, I've completely fallen off the virtual planet.

Well I'm back internet. I've missed you. But unfortunately this is all I can offer you today.

Instructions: Do a web search for "Unfortunately [your name]" including the quote marks and write down your favorite results.

  1. Unfortunately, Lori has now disappeared from the Web. (I know! We already covered that. Let's move on already.)
  2. Unfortunately, Lori’s jet-setting big-city life isn’t what she dreamed it would be. (Yeah, where is that jet anyway?)
  3. Unfortunately, Lori has retired from being the Director of Fan Relations as of Spring 1998. (I can't tell you how hard it is to relate to fans. I much prefer air conditioning.)
  4. Unfortunately, Lori fell for Mark's deceptions, and he plucked her up out of her world, and wove her within his complex web of lies. (Darn you Mark and your plucking and deceiving.)
  5. Unfortunately Lori doesn't play any of the music on this CD. (That's right people, I rock.)
  6. Unfortunately Lori passed away in October 2005 leaving a huge loss in the schnauzer community. (Hey, are you calling me a female dog?)
  7. Unfortunately Lori it's not that simple. (Sadly, it never is.)
  8. Unfortunately, Lori cannot overpower the swarm of burly bodyguards surrounding the mobster, in spite of her formidable fighting prowess. (And don't you forget it!)
  9. Unfortunately Lori won't be able to make it this year due to her very large pregnant belly. (Dude, I'm not pregnant.)
  10. Unfortunately, Lori, you are experiencing what we call a flare-up. (Well of course I am, did you read #6 and #9?)
  11. Unfortunately, Lori just wants to be friends (without benefits). (Uh, yeah, I'm married!)
  12. Unfortunately, Lori, my dear Packer-loving friend, these socks were made ESPECIALLY for my feet. (It's just a sock, relax.)
  13. Unfortunately, Lori seems to have forgotten how rough it was the first time she married a prisoner. (The second time's a charm, right?)
  14. Unfortunately, Lori never really attained the stardom she so richly deserved (and never posed naked). (What's up with that? I totally deserve to attain stardom. With my clothes on TYVM!)

  © Blogger template 'Fly Away' by 2008

Back to TOP