Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Ring Of Fire

Well, as my already chaotic morning would have it, I had a long post typed out and then Blogger shoved me off before I could save or post. I am on my way out the door and will not have time to post, again, so I will give the short version...be back with a better post, tomorrow.

In my ever changing moods, today finds me indifferent and slightly irritated...it will pass...it's just been a chaotic whirlwind since 6am...unorganized teens since a bff was here, one million questions, one million ways to call my name, the evasive mumbling that the cheeleader does so well, everyone in a mad dash and grumpy...me, trying to tune it all out.

Just another morning in the life of a mom...I will be fine as soon as I climb out of the ring of fire.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Iko, Iko

It's Monday, again!! Wait...wasn't I just basking in Friday?? Time flies when it's the weekend. Anyway, hoping that your Monday is kicking off to a great start!

As usual, my weekend was busy, full of stress with the cheerleader, filled with relief over cheer tryouts and then spent the rest of the time hanging out with Mr. Man. On Saturday, we enjoyed our favorite chinese takeout, watched a car auction on tv, I had a lunch to attend, yesterday, at my mother's house, and then I met up with Mr. Man, later in the day, to do a couple of errands. On our way back into town, we decided to make it an impromptu date night. He has been crazy, crazy busy with work and the past couple of weeks have sort of floated by with us barely having time for a conversation. The cheerleader was away at a friend's for the night, so we had nobody to worry about at home.

So, we stopped at a local Mexican place, had a couple of cold Coronas with lime, enjoyed some chips and salsa and an order of chicken nachos. We rented the movie, The Hangover, and ended up laughing so hard we cried. If you enjoy dark, sick humor, this is your movie.

In my ever changing moods, last night was a much needed break for both of us. We are a household of everyone running in different directions, at all times. It is so nice and means so much to me when we can just sort of lock the doors, turn off the lights and watch a movie. We don't seem to groove to sappy, love movies, when we are watching, together. We go for the humor, the sick, or the action. Last night's movie provided all of those.

There is one scene of the movie that is a total nod to the movie, Rain Man. Hence the title of my blog entry, today. It also happened to have been a fun song that the Grateful Dead would sometimes play at a concert. Often mistaken for, Women Are Smarter, since the intro. sounds the same. But, you don't need a lesson in the songs of The Grateful Dead. You just need to know that last night was fun, the movie is hysterically funny so you should rent it and the song is fun. What more is there to life??

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Bring It On!!

Well, since I have posted everywhere else, I thought it should go on my blog, as well.

The cheerleader made both Varsity squads!!! It's a very exciting day for my ever changing moods. I am a very happy and proud mom who also is feeling some little pangs of this being so bittersweet. Good times are ahead for the soon to be senior cheerleader. I stand on the sidelines clapping her on!!

So, yeah...Bring It On!! The ultimate and classic cheer song HAD to make a debut, today...

Playing In The Band

It's Saturday and like many years, March is leaving Maggie's Farm in a ball of fire. It teased us with almost two weeks of warm and sunny weather. It let us go out and get our groove on with flipflops, skirts, cutoffs and shades. Then, yesterday, we woke to snow, ice, wind and cold. But, blue skies are on the horizon, the snow is melting and some of my flowers are peeking out to bloom.

So, it's one of those "in between" kind of Saturdays. Not warm enough to do outside work but too pretty to want to be stuck inside. If you need a song or a book to pass the time, you know I have suggestions for both on my Suggestion Saturday..lol.

Go out and enjoy!!

Excellent journey with The Dead...

Love this version of the song and love the Winterland concert. I liked the years that Donna sang with the band and her scream in this song is amazing. I know, I know, many people who followed The Grateful Dead called her the Yoko of The Dead. I like her voice with them, though...

The Waiting

It's been a busy and stressed out week at Maggie's Farm. This week has been cheer tryout week. Cheer tryout week comes with much stress, irritation, short tempers and once the tryout part is over, the cheerleader must wait. The tryouts ended, last night, and the girls will not know the results until they go to the school, today, on Saturday, to view the results on the lists that are posted on the outside doors.

The lists....you pull into the parking lot and the lists are looming there. Your legs feel like jello as you approach them. Some girls are jumping up and down, some are crying and some are mad and say mean things. As a mom, you hope, PLEASE, that your kid's name is on that list.

The cheerleader has been cheering since peewee football squads back in 4th grade. She has cheered jr. high and high school squads. She is a good cheerleader and tumbler. It's her life. Her sport. She attacks cheerleading. She doesn't just cheer, she eats, sleeps, breathes cheering.

It's fun to watch her cheer the Varsity football and basketball games. It's fun to watch her tumble. It's been fun to follow the squad from freshman year. To me, and my ever changing moods, I know that her cheering is nothing short of a miracle.

The cheerleader has had two very major surgeries in her young life. This is not to make you sad for her or to post about bad memories. But the fact that the cheerleader is out there doing all of this stuff takes my breath away. She has had a heart surgery and a back surgery. She retrained herself in gymnastics and cheering once she was given the okay after her back surgery. So, to see her out there, poms in hand and to see her take off on the court in a series of back handsprings and back tucks, it is a pretty amazing thing for Mr. Man and me to watch.

So, not only does she love cheering and is good at it, cheering marks a milestone of sorts for us, as a family. To have her out there, doing this, means more than just watching a peppy cheerleader. It marked the point where she made her comeback and has never looked back at that back surgery.

Today will be the first time that I don't drive her to view the lists. The first time I won't be by her side to see the results. She drives, now, and wants to go alone and to be with her friends. She will be a senior, next year, and these will be her last high school tryouts. I hope the results are happy for her.

So, today is sure to be long until she can go to the school. The waiting really is the hardest part...

Thursday, March 25, 2010

I Want To Be Sedated

Well, who doesn't, right?? Actually, not only does this song remind me of club dancing, back in the day, it also is a song that I sing in my head each and every time I have a dental appointment. Going to the dentist, as we all know, is a must. In my ever changing moods, going to the dentist rates right up there with poking needles in my eyes.

When you are young and you go to the dentist you get all kinds of fun prizes and your name goes on a big wall of cavity free kids, etc. You skip out of the office with the taste of bubblegum flouride treatments in your mouth, a handy goody bag of new toothbrushes, floss, fun stuff. And, you get to pick a prize from the jolly treasure chest. When you are in your mid 40s, you get lots of lectures and warnings about fun stuff called peridontal disease, gum care, plaque buildup and then xrays that show them that you will either have healthy teeth into your 100s or if you need root canal/crowns/loads of fun stuff. Plus, I am convinced that my gums are 200% more sensitive to cleanings, now, so popping a couple of Advil is important before I step foot in the door.

Anyway, my whole life, I have had excellent teeth. One cavity and super strong teeth. And, the whole cavity thing made me mad because I don't even call it my fault. I call it the fault of the ugly braces I wore in grades 7,8 and 9. So, this cavity was filled in the mid 70s and it lasted until 2009. It seemed to crack when I was chewing on a pistachio. I went to the dentist to have it looked at and refilled. And this has started a journey of irritating, multiple dental visits because he can't seem to get the filling right.

Did dentists of the 70s have a better way to install a filling? Was the material a super cavity filler of lead? All I know is that since 2009, I have made about 5 visits to the dentist about this faulty filling. It either comes loose, cracks off or doesn't fit right. HOW HARD CAN THIS BE?? He is filling a large molar. I have been patient and understanding and told him it's not his fault. But, come on...it's a filling!!

I had a cleaning appointment the other day plus an appointment to, you guessed it, fix the filling....AGAIN. This time, it is worse than it has ever been. Very frustrating. Not only do I have to try to chew on one side of my mouth, I also have to be careful not to run my tongue over the filling because it has something sharp and I am afraid of a big slash to the underside of my tongue.

So, this morning, I get to call them...AGAIN. Sit in the dental chair...AGAIN. And hope for the filling of all fillings to be corrected.

In my ever changing moods, as I sit in that dental chair with my mouth full of drilling, sanding, and who knows what else goes on, I just want to be sedated!!!!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Pink Houses

Today, the weather is warm and sunny and I had a few errands to run so I cranked up the tunes and opened the sunroof on my VWBeetle, Sugaree. That's her name. I name all of my cars. It's an illness..lol.

Anyway, as I was driving, Pink Houses came on my Ipod. This song never ceases to bring a huge smile to my face. Nothing makes me remember campus life and sorority life quite like this song. 1983-1984 campus life at it's best.

I went to a smallish university in Kentucky. I loved the school, loved my sorority and loved the friendships that remain, still to this day. In my ever changing moods, remembering college is one of my favorite times in life to remember. I mean, I don't sit around and think...wow..those were my glory days and now they are over. I just mean that there is no other time like those four years in a person's life. How much fun, laughter and parties can a person fit into four years? A lot. Oh, and the academics. Yes, yes, yes...of course, we were in college to also LEARN something.

There is nothing quite like moving back to campus on moving in day at the beginning of fall. I remember the packing, the moving, the reuniting with old pals that you were seperated from all summer. I have to stop here to say...yes, this was before cell phones, My Space, Facebook, IMs or emails. When the year was over, we all had to part ways. No staying connected 24/7. You left in May and returned at the end of August or beginning of September. Unless you took a road trip to see everyone, you did not see them for months. You went home and spent the summers working at a summer job and spent time with your high school pals and lived at home. Or, you stayed and went to summer school. But, I always went home to work summer jobs to save money to pay for my sorority, sorority housing costs, formals for dances and fun money. My parents only took care of the basics....the horror!! Anyway...that was college life, the old school way.

Then, summer ended, you moved back and campus was all rockin'. Friends hugging, everyone lugging tons of stuff up to dorm rooms and into houses. Music blaring all over campus. Which brings me to the Pink Houses semester. The song blared all over as we moved in, it blared at rush parties, it blared downtown and it blared at house parties. There was an old bar in our college town that catered to the greek organizations. It was popular to go there on Friday nights with your fellow sorority or fraternity. My sorority loved this song because we could change some of the words and insert our sorority name. We could sing it really loud and as a large group standing on top of tables or chairs all hugging. The pink part was handy as one of our sorority colors happened to be pink. So....Friday nights, happy hours, cue the music and you have a big group of girls shouting this song as our theme song. It was great fun.

Like I said, this song always brings a smile to my face. For me, it was a time of carefree fun, close friends, all of us on the adventure of our lives, learning about life for the first time. And, I still mess with the words. Because to me, it will always be...Little Pink Houses for Delta Z!! And then the memories all come flooding back.

In my ever changing moods, campus life was a great time in life. I was lucky to be a part of it and I treasure the memories and the song.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

She's A Rainbow

This past weekend we began the rite of passage ritual that each girl gets to begin when they are a high school junior. We began prom dress shopping. In my ever changing moods, it made me dizzy, jittery and honestly, it hurt my eyes. Gone are the days of the soft whites and pastel dresses. There are now dresses in every neon color under the sun. Each girl that was standing in front of her dressing room arguing with her mother looked exactly like a brightly colored rainbow.

The cheerleader and I always have fun when we shop in the fall for homecoming dresses. We slip into the Jessica McClintock boutique and we slip out with the perfect dress. I had high hopes for the same result with prom dress shopping. Sadly, that was not the case. And, since my prom days ended in the very early 80s, I was out of touch, according to the cheerleader.

Each dress store that we walked into looked like it was a hurricane in motion of neon, rhinestones, sequins, backless, plunging necklines and slits up to here. There were bold prints, pageant dresses, princess dresses, gone with the wind dresses, Vegas cocktail dresses and dresses that looked like birds. I was actually scared. I like to pride myself on being up on fashion, I dress hip, I know the designers. But, nothing prepared me for the entrance to prom dress mania.

I texted my friend, Darla, who just went through the prom dress shopping and told her that I kept humming the tune to, Rhinestone Cowboy. The cheerleader tried on three BEAUTIFUL dresses picked out by me, her mother, the prom girl of old school prom dresses. They all looked stunning. But, apparently, prom must unleash some inner desire to be covered in rhinestones with a plunging back and slits all over the place. My choices were left in the dressing rooms. We left with no dress in hand. The cheerleader wants to be WOWED. I want to take my sunglasses for the next prom dress shopping extravaganza, this weekend.

A prom is special, the dress needs to be perfect, the date needs to be fun, the limo needs to be packed with friends. I get all of that. I was young and went to all of my proms, wore white, we didn't rent a limo back then and usually couldn't stand many of my dates. But, I know prom is special!!

I just hope they all wear sunglasses to shade their eyes from the dizzying array of dresses in neon colors as they enter their special dance.

Monday, March 22, 2010

Waiting On A Friend

On Saturday, I was waiting on a friend. My friend, Dawn, was coming from Illinois to visit her son at a nearby university. So, she was going to skip over to Maggie's Farm for a girl's night after her visit. I was so excited to see her because she makes me laugh, we have a lot in common and it would be the first time she was a house guest.

We have a history that dates back almost to almost 13 or 14 years. We met at the wonderful, Moms Online, back in it's heyday in the late 90s. We met on a food/dinner board. She was almost my age and was raising an only, just like me. She married the love of her life, just like me, and our friendship started over a little recipe that I posted on that board called, Dixie Chicken.

As online boards go, that whole network broke up, moved on and we were all left to pick up the pieces. During that time frame, we packed up and moved to Maggie's Farm and I was so busy getting things moved and settled, that I hadn't had any internet time. By the time I was all hooked up and ready to roll, I had to find a new group of internet foodies to hang with. So, I found them, hooked up, and out of the blue there was Dawn!! Again, we reconnected over, Dixie Chicken.

We bonded, survived more board closings and break ups and finally got to meet at a lunch in Indianapolis, last year, when my online friends surprised me with a big gathering of friends I had met, friends I had never met and friends I had lost track of. And, sitting there in the midst of all the faces was Dawn. We finally met and from that moment on, we have laughed ourselves silly. We have cried, meowed, supported and loved. We share an obnoxious sense of humor, we can relate when it comes to mothering an only, we sing at LOUD decibels, we like to have fun, we talk over eachother, we share pretend rock star boyfriends...she has Steven Tyler, I have Mick Jagger. We have weathered many stormy and rocky internet boards and we are still standing strong. We laughed on Saturday and decided that if our current board has a board breakup, then it really is all about us and we will just have to form a board of two. Seriously, after a person goes through a million board breakups and you are still with a few of the same people, that speaks volumes. I love my internet friends. I just hope the circle doesn't keep getting smaller.

Dawn got to meet Mr. Man, the cheerleader, one of the cheerleader's bffs, the world's oddest cat and we plowed through a bit of the vino. We laughed and dished and laughed some more and then Sunday came too quick!! I bid her farewell and enjoyed our short time, together.

In my ever changing moods, I love and standby all of my friends. Some, I see daily, others not so much, and still others have not yet been met but someday we will!!

It makes me happy to anticipate my visits with friends....I guess I am always just waiting on a friend...

Rainy Days and Mondays

Mondays are bad enough but when you add rain and cold to the mix, they are really bad. I am usually a very upbeat person no matter what day of the week it is but Mondays just hit me like a brick wall. The Monday morning blues, the Monday fog from the weekend. I have been like this my whole life. I don't like Mondays.

I love Friday and all of the anticipation of what the weekend will bring. When I was young, it meant fun, fun, fun. The thought of no school loomed ahead for Friday night, Saturday and Sunday. Then, later on Sunday evening, that dreaded Monday feeling would start to creep up. The thought of rushing through forgotten weekend homework, a last minute project, just the thought of waking up and getting back into the school groove.

Mr. Man gets busy and distracted, again, the cheerleader is busy with school and her activities. Everyone is coming and going and sometimes there is very little time to just have all of us home at once to even have a conversation. It feels like a green flag is waving in front of me when I wake up on Monday morning and it's a mad race, all week. Then, Friday comes along and blissfully carries you into the weekend where everyone is more relaxed, more fun and we have time to actually talk or at least spend a few minutes laughing and hanging out.

Friday seems to weave a coccoon around me and holds me in a relaxed state. Mr. Man and I have date nights on Saturdays, a lot, and I love spending time with him. Even if we are just hanging out at home, together, it's great fun. The cheerleader is usually in and out, all weekend, with friends and I love hearing their music and laughter and their activities.

Just as everyone is getting settled into that great weekend feeling and groove, the alarm goes off, it's early Monday morning and everyone is running around in a state of crabbiness, unorganizaion, stress mode and chaos. Before I know it, the cheerleader is on her way to school leaving a cloud of dust when she exits. Mr. Man is already out the door and absorbed back into his work mode and I am left looking forward to Friday.

This morning was no different and to add to the Monday mania, there was hard rain and a chill to the air. In my ever changing moods, I remain not in love with Mondays.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Almost Famous

You know I can't leave you on a weekend without a movie and book suggestion...it's my weekend way of blogging!!

I am giving you my favorite scene from one of my favorite movies. When this movie came out, I saw it in the theaters and when it came out on video, I owned it and now I own it on dvd AND have it recorded on my movie list on my dvr. You know how everyone has a movie that they can watch a million times but each time it comes on, you just have to watch, again? This is one of mine. I mean who didn't want to be the rock chick with the band?? And in this movie, who didn't want to be Penny Lane?

Anyway, it's a fun movie with fun music and great clothes for the girls. It reminds me of my best friend in high school and all of the music that we used to absorb. We listened to any and all kinds of music. We left the bubblegum music behind and delved into classic rock, punk, new wave, old school bluegrass. She loved The Who, John Lennon and Neil Young. I grooved to old school Stones, The Doors, The Grateful Dead, Led Zeppelin. She played guitar and got a great gig at a local college radio station. We discovered lots of odd and obscure music through that.

Music really does play like a mix tape through my head, it peppers every memory and it enhances my day to day mundane activities. I like that my blog lets me not only post about my rambling thoughts but it also lets me set them all to music. If you were to meet me, you would no doubt be singing with me within the hour. It's just how I roll.

So, enjoy this movie if you have the time, this weekend...and remember, aren't we all really, Almost Famous? (Yes, in our heads, we are all legends in our own minds..) Enjoy!!

And...if you are in need of a great and obscure read, try this...it's a dark story entangled around specific events that happened at a specific time in the 1960s. If you like early Rolling Stones, the mid to late 60s and bizarre events that changed the world, you will love this.

As always, the thoughts on this blog, the music, the movies and the books are all just part of me and my ever changing moods...I don't pretend to be a movie critic, music critic or book critic. I just like to pass along my favorite loves...

Friday, March 19, 2010

You're So Vain

And, yes, I think she wrote this song about me. I know, I know...many myths as to who this song is about but I sometimes adopt it as my theme song. In a good way!! Not in a "I am all that and a bag of chips" way.

Today is a sunny and warm day and to make it even more perfect, it's hair salon day!! You already know about my love of all things makeup from my beauty school dropout post. Hair is my next vain thing. I don't know why I have this sickness but I do obsess over my hair. In my ever changing moods and my ever increasing age, the thing I worry most over is my hair. I know, I know...there are HUGE, HUGE, HUGE things to worry over on a much less shallow scale and this entry is not meant to ever mean that I don't have deeper worries for myself, for those I love or for everyone. But, this blog is mine and I am feeling very vain, today. Please, never take my words to mean that I don't realize there are bigger things in the world to worry and care about. I am not tackling the world, though. I am tackling the rambling thoughts in my head and my moods.

Anyway, my hair obsessions started way back in elementary school. My mother and I would have very tearful arguments over my hair. I wanted to wear it long and free like my idol of the time, Marcia Brady. She wanted to slather it in Dippity Do (I KNOW....it was the early 70s and hair product choices were slim..lol) and then tightly wind it all up in pink sponge rollers. Oh, the humiliation the next morning. She would send me off to school with ringlets but the minute I stepped foot on the bus, my trusty brush would come out and I would whip it through my hair until all curl was out and all that was left was frizz. Second grade was known as the Bad Hair Year.

For some reason our hair battles ended after third grade and I wore my hair straight and rather stringy. I thought it was beautiful, then, but looking at old pictures, not so much. All was going perfectly until two haircuts were introduced. The Dorothy Hamill and Farrah's feathered bangs. The Dorothy Hamill was a very unfortunate haircut that never should have been given to someone with thick, wavy hair. In other words, me. I looked like a mushroom. I spent most of that year trying to pull it straight after I washed it and hoped for the best when it dried. That haircut grew out and then it was time for feathered bangs. Again, not a good idea when a person has a natural little arch at the top of their hair. Me, again. And, I have to stop here and ask....were the stylists of the 70s even trained to give good haircuts???? Moving on. The haircuts grew, I was happy and high school was on the horizon.

High school years....good hair years until senior year. See, I am really vain since I gauge good and bad school years on what my hair looked like. And yes, I actually did graduate with good grades and got accepted into college. I must have been absorbing knowledge through all of that Dippity Do and Gee, Your Hair Smells Terrific and cans of Aqua Net.

Senior year introduced myself and my friends to...drumroll...Sun In. Who knew what damage lurked behind a bottle of spray on chemcicals that could magically lighten your hair with the aid of a blow dryer? Hmmmm??? Okay, well, yea but we were all in search of Malibu Barbie hair. Our results were all quite a disaster and better left to bad memories.

I think I forgot the bad home perm of my junior year. My mother took charge of my hair. I think it was punishment for wrecking a car and once again I was left with a mess of a hairstyle. Behind her back, I bought a chemical hair straightening solution. I had no idea that I could have set my hair on fire using it. The results were not the straight, silky look. It was once again...frizz.

In college, a bunch of my sorority sisters and I found the joys of paint on highlights. Had we learned nothing through higher education????

Time has marched on and surprisingly I still have a full head of hair. I left out the summers of lemon juice and combing peroxide through our strands. Damn that Malibu Barbie!!!

So, I got older and wiser and put my hair into the hands of a professional a long time ago. Today, I am no longer in pursuit of Malibu Barbie's hair. I have gone darker, more natural and thanks to great hair products, better blow dryers, expensive flat irons and organic coconut oil, I have the hair of my dreams.

In my ever changing moods, I am allowed to be proud of my tresses. They survived the hair wars of the late 60s, 70s, 80s and 90s. This past decade has been a good hair decade. The rest of the world may have gone to a pile of poo but it will be known as my Personal Hair Best!

Yes, I am so vain about my hair...and I bet Carly wrote the song with me in mind...even though she didn't mean it to be about my hair. See....vain.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Circle Game

This week has a been a week of wonderful, warm and sunny spring-like weather. It is always a huge pleasure to cross that threshold from winter weather into this sunny and mild weather. This year, I am appreciating the coming of spring with even more excitement! As you all have followed me on my journey, you know that the winter on Maggie's Farm has been a complete drag. So, I am welcoming each of these beautiful days with open arms.

In my ever changing moods, the onset of spring always makes me feel like I am a young kid, again, or a carefree teen, again. I remember getting so excited at the first hint of warmth. Back then, it meant longer afternoons and evenings on my bike or playing in the neighborhood. When I was a bit older, it meant longer times to drive around in our cars with the windows down, 8 track tapes blaring and spending time at the local park just hanging out, sitting on cars, throwing frisbees and listening to tunes. Spring was both a time of revving up and mellowing out. There was a sense that anything and everything was possible. A time to renew and recreate.

I still get excited at the first hint of spring. I open the windows, drive with my sunroof open, blare music through my Ipod, stay outside and work because the day is longer, throw cutoffs and flipflops on. There is still that rush that anything is possible! Okay, I don't hang at the local park or sit on my car while chatting at the local park. But, I do still feel like running around and throwing a frisbee. And, I do still get that same sense that anything and everything is possible. It definitely is a time to renew, restore, recharge and recreate!

Yesterday, the cheerleader was home after school. This is a rare thing for her since she is usually busy with practices and meetings each and every afternoon. She and one of her bffs took off for the mall and then she called and said that they weren't ready to come home, yet, because it felt so good to drive around with their windows open and they just wanted to keep driving.

I had to just smile through the phone. Her statement took me back to me and my bffs in the carefree days of early springs. The fun, the driving, the laughter, the singing. I knew exactly what the cheerleader was talking about and it filled my heart with happiness that she is enjoying her youth and her spring weather just as I had. Life and the onset of spring really is a circle game.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Shelter From The Storm

In my ever changing moods, I often find myself on a mood rollercoaster when it comes to being the mom of a 16 year old girl. I know I am not the first to roam these lands and will not be the last. I just wish the battlefield was sometimes easier and that it was not littered with the heavy sighs, the eyerolls, the comments, the frustration and anger. I knew things would change in these years but nobody sent the "mom memo" on how to lead the troops, or in my case, the little soldier, to happier grounds through happier trails.

Let me say this, though...I feel extremely lucky that a teen attitude is all we are dealing with. I mean, it could be much worse and for that, I am relieved. But, who knew the teen attitude could cut right through a mom?

The cheerleader is very head strong and stubborn. She is a very focused, Type A teen, gets good grades, is active and involved and is usually a very nice and compassionate kid. Until I enter a room. Picture a sunny day, all is happy, all is well and then you see a dark and menacing cloud approach. I guess I am that cloud in her eyes. A simple question, a simple comment, a simple request from me can suck the air out of the happy day. And, while that's okay, I mean, I am a mom and not a bff, it would be nice to sometimes, sometimes, sometimes have that little, smiling toddler still holding my hand and beaming up at me as if I really were the best fairy princess of all.

We have hit that time in every high schooler's life when it is crucial to talk about....ACT testing, college thoughts and choices, a part time job, GPA, tallying up extracurricular activities, volunteer hours, service hours for National Honor Society and the importance of planning senior year and maybe working on early admissions applications to college in the fall. At the end of some of these discussions, I feel like the teacher on Charlie Brown and the cheerleader sees me as the big, dark cloud.

More important things on the cheerleader's mind are, of course, upcoming cheer tryouts, the upcoming prom, prom date, prom dress, spring clothes shopping, spring and summer plans and getting her goat for 4H. (Yes, the goat....again.....) I mean, what am I doing going on and on and on about her future plans when the weather is now warm and she has a set of wheels??? I am so lame. Was I never young?

The cheerleader is very excited to go away to college. If she chould leave now, she would. She has always been very mature and ready for things coming her way. My grandmother used to say that the cheerleader always seemed like she was born as a one year old instead of a baby. My grandmother would be laughing now because that truly describes the cheerleader, now. An older soul butting heads with her mom who was never young, never applied for part time jobs, never filled out college applications, never did anything, I guess. Oh, how I laugh. I did all of that and basically did it on my own because most of the time, nobody had the time to help me or tell me how to do it. But...according to the cheerleader, that was in the old days and things are so different now.

I know that there will come a time when we become friendly, again. And on some days, we actually do have a ton of smiles and laughs. Those days are just so fleeting. I do take comfort that the cheerleader and Mr. Man have a great bond. So, if I need the cheerleader to do something, I ask Mr. Man to make it his idea. Then, it gets done with no tears involved.

Until then, I will just keep marching across the battlefield. I know that the battlefield is necessary and that in the end, a stronger soldier will emerge. She may be dragging her trampled mother with her but I will be right by her side.

In my ever changing moods, I just want her to know that even in these turbulent times, she is loved, cherished, cared for and always has a place in my heart. She will need that shelter, someday. She just doesn't know it, yet...

Tuesday, March 16, 2010


A really cool thing to do when you are walking the streets on your vacation....

The Imagine Art Exhibit was wonderful!!! What better way to pass a rainy afternoon? I walked through the entire show in a trance...and wanted to purchase about 6 items...

And...what better book to tuck in your travel bag?

What's Up?

I can't believe how time flies and vacation is over and now I am back to reality. The time away was wonderful!! It's amazing what some sun, warm temps., cocktails, shopping and great evenings can do for a girl. The get away was most needed and much appreciated.

So, today is one of those days that my ever changing moods does not find fun. The mundane tasks of loads of laundry, cleaning the house, getting caught up on everything that was pushed to the sidelines before vacation and trying to shift gears from total relaxation to total chaos, once again.

Mr. Man and I had a lovely time, together, and while we were away we got to just talk and laugh and be totally in love. I know, it sounds corny but we always try to have regular date nights and times when we go away without the cheerleader. It's great to just be the two of us, at times. Anyway, we had some laughs over the name that I use for him, here, in my blog and how maybe it is a tad boring. I told him I would think of a new name and he came up with a load of funny names. We will see what he ends up being called in this blog.

Our weather seems to be on the upswing to spring! The cheerleader is busy with school and cheer tryouts, the world's oddest cat is back home after being shipped off while we were away and she is happy to be out stalking around Maggie's Farm. The windows are open and I am preparing for a visit from a dear friend from Illinois. Lots to do and lots to be excited about and at the same time, I am wondering if I can still keep up with sunning myself and having an afternoon cocktail delivered to me. In my ever changing moods, life is busy!

So, back to reality for moi! The time away was great but it's always great to return to home and to the things that I love. I missed my daily rambling thoughts on this blog and I missed all of you!

Tell, me....What's up?

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Turn On Your Lovelight

I am leaving you with this thought and song as my ever changing moods takes a break and heads off for vacation. Getting away from the long winter and taking a complete mental holiday.

I will see you all next week and remember...I'll leave the lovelight on.

Shine, shine, shine while I am gone...

Monday, March 8, 2010

Beauty School Drop Out

Well, I didn't go to beauty school and if I had, I certainly would not have been a drop out. I think I would have moved to the head of the class and beamed proudly in my lipgloss.

My friends often sing this song to me because of my obsessions with makeup, perfume, hair products. Beauty products, in general, just make me ecstatically happy! My motto has always been that nothing can ever be so bad that you can't fix it with a new shade of lipgloss. Well, that is an exaggeration but seriously, all I have to do is buy a new shade of lipgloss and I am all smiles, back on track, queen of the world.

This past weekend was a busy one in the lives of moi, Mr. Man and the cheerleader. Last night, Mr. Man suggested a night out, the three of us, for dinner. I needed to get ready and pulled out my trusty makeup bag. As I was standing at the mirror applying my eyeshadow, I started to think about my makeup obsessions. How did they start? How did I come to love makeup so much? The odd thing is that I am not a full mask of makeup wearing kind of girl. I go for the natural look but that takes time and product. I wondered if all girls share this obsession.

So, in the minutes that I was applying my makeup, my ever changing moods drifted back to the beginning...the woman that started it all for me...the makeup enabler...The Avon Lady.

Growing up in the late 60s and early 70s in suburbia neighborhoods, who didn't have an Avon lady ringing the doorbell? I would get so excited when my mother would announce that today would be the day that our Avon lady would be stopping by with an order for my mother. My heart would pound and I would make sure that I stayed at home (only in the summer months...during the school year, I would be in school when the Avon lady came to call) until she showed up! I loved how dressy she was and she carried the coolest aqua suitcase full of makeup samples. I loved watching as she unzipped her makeup suitcase and started to display the latest products and samples. I would sit in a trance wishing that I could buy every item in her bag. My mother was never on my same page and ordered just a face cream or a replacement lipstick. She never ventured into the more exotic colors of eyeshadows or lipsticks. After my mother would place her order, the Avon lady would always turn to me....and take out plastic bags. Plastic bags full of the older samples that she no longer used in her case. ALL FOR ME. She was like a makeup fairy descending on my house and bestowing me with these beauty products.

I would swiftly run to my room, empty the bags and immediately start going through the loot. They were the little white sample tubes of lipsticks and those awful bright blue and green sample tubes of eyeshadows. And, I sampled them all. And snuck them out to my friends. And stuffed them in my purses so that I could sneak them to school and we could all sneak makeup in the bathroom. I became the elementary school Avon child.

What I didn't realize was I was setting the course for a lifetime of addiction. The eyeshadows, the lippies, the powders, the creams, the sparkle...it has never ended. Except, the Avon Lady no longer rings my doorbell and my new enabler is now Sephora but I get the same sensation as soon as I put a foot into any Sephora. It is the same rush as when the Avon lady used to step foot into my childhood home.

In my ever changing moods, makeup offers me happiness, excitement, hope and the never ending feeling that anything is possible with lipgloss!!

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Here Comes The Sun

Finally!! After months of dreary, biting cold and freezing snow, the sun is shining and the temperature is rumored to see a move upward, today!! What a perfect Saturday!! It's not a heat wave, yet, but I will take it!

In your ever changing moods, enjoy the sunny Saturday! It's the first in a string of many yet to come as we approach spring and summer.

Enjoy your day, your weekend and if are looking for a great book to pass the time....flip through the love triangle of George Harrison, Pattie Boyd and Eric Clapton...

Friday, March 5, 2010

Going To California

The older I get and with all of my ever changing moods, I like to look back in time and remember the places I have been, the places I have visted and the places I have lived. There have been many and each of them holds a piece of my heart or a corner of my mind.

California....I moved there on a total whim. In a split second I threw caution to the wind and raised my hand to go. I was in Dallas, Texas in an American Airlines flight attendant training course for 8 weeks. Back in the day, since I have no idea how they do things, now, you went to a classroom and everyone was seated. It was late, late in the evening and the instructors came in with a list of bases (airports) that would have openings for us after we graduated. All along, I figured I would just go with the safe choice and pick Chicago. I was from the midwest, had gone to college in Kentucky and my mother strongly was telling me to go to Chicago. Chicago also was a very junior base. In flight attendant lingo, that meant that it was all young flight attendants with about 5 years experience or less. Great for holding schedules, decent cost of living and a great commuter base if you didn't want to live in Chicago.

So, as we sat, we all knew that Chicago would open up and New York would open up and Dallas would open up. The instructors had told us all along that these would be our choices. That night, though, they rushed in full of excitement. This never happens, they said. Once in a million years, they said. The senior bases of both San Francisco and Los Angeles were.....OPENING!!! No junior flight attendants ever get to go to these bases. (Again, back in the day).

They told us we had 5 minutes...5 minutes to decide our next step. I sat....I stared....I heard my mother's voice saying...Chicago. And then, a memory flashed into my head. And, a song.

The memory was from my high school years and the neighborhood where I grew up. There were not many girls in my neighborhood so a lot of the neighborhood guys were my friends and had been since elementary years. One of the guys was my faithful friend at all times. And, to this day, he remains a best friend to both Mr. Man and me. He actually was one of Mr. Man's bffs in high school. Anyway, before any of us were old enough to get our driver's license, we motored around on our bikes. Our ten speeds. And, this friend and I did a lot of biking in the summers. And, a lot of talking...about California. We both had hippie in our hearts and since we were good friends, we shared a lot of talk about going to California. Not together, because we were just pals, but each of us exploring California. So, when I was sitting in that classroom and my 5 minutes were almost coming to an end, they started to call out the bases. We were each to raise our hands so that they could count the numbers and make sure each base had room. The Chicago base was called and it was time to raise my hand. But all of a sudden, I remembered my old friend and our very old conversations about California and the Led Zeppelin song that I listened to over and over and over.....and I didn't raise my hand. I watched as the Chicago base filled up. And, when they called the California bases, I raised my hand...

Without a thought or a care or a worry, I was going to California.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Get Off Of My Cloud

Somedays, don't you just want to yell this to the world? Every once in a while, I hit a day or a week where I just want to put this song on a boom box and in the style of John Cusak in the movie, Say Anything, blare it at everyone who approaches me. It could be a warning of sorts. Press play and they back off.

In my ever changing moods, I sing this song in my head, a lot. I don't like when lots of little things build up and escalate and you know that you have no control over if friends are arguing or if they are arguing with you or if your child doesn't want to hear what you are saying or the inside of your head feels like the information super highway. I mean, somedays, you just want to say, enough! Back off, people. I cannot fix your happiness, I cannot fix what is already broken in a friendship, I cannot control the sun, the moon and the stars. I don't have eight hands to sign the stack of permission slips that have piled up in the cheerleader's car that should have been handed to me, a week ago and what??? You are surprised that my mind doesn't have a spot stored for all of the things that are mumbled at me in passing but apparently I am supposed to understand, remember and do...?

I know...we are all supposed to be super moms, super friends, super miracle workers, super everything. But, what would happen if people across America decided to stop, load up the old boom box and just blare this song?

Some of you may think that this is a post about me having a bad attitude. Not really...I may be feeling the last remnants of the long winter, or the sting of frienships gone south, or the overload of mom information that I should remember on a moment's notice but it's not about having a bad attitude. It is about a new awareness. A new awareness that would be so simple. Just aim and press play. Yes, this job is too big for an Ipod. This requires a really old school boom box with a great old school cassette tape.

If everyone pressed play, all at once, do you think people would get the idea to get off of your cloud and tend to their own cloud? Fix what's broken or wrong on their cloud and let you just drift blissfully by on your cloud? Give you permission slips or information or schedules as you need them so that your cloud is peaceful and not ready to turn gray and storm??

In my ever changing moods, this makes my mood smile. I love the thought of just a little action of a boom box blaring this song and all of a sudden, people just tend to themselves.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Boogie Shoes

Does this song title bring back memories? It does for me!!! Last night was a basketball tournament game for our high school. The cheerleader cheered and with it being a tournament game, loud music was pumping at every time out, end of quarter, halftime and warm up. Well, this song came on and I almost jumped on top of the bleachers and started dancing. Mr. Man looked alarmed at my excitement so I contained myself to just swaying my shoulders.

I know that I have mentioned being in my mid 40s which means I was born in the 1960s and came of age in the 1970s. The 70s totally rocked!! And, since I was young in the 70s, we used to go roller skating at the local skating rink, have parties in basements with rooms called rumpus rooms, had middle school dances in the school gym and had slumber parties.

Last night, when I heard this song, it totally sent my ever changing mood back to a time when you could dance like a fool and nobody cared. We wore feathered hair, bell bottom jeans, platform shoes, carted giant tubes of lipgloss and drenched ourselves in Love's Baby Soft perfume and Gee, Your Hair Smells Terrific shampoo.

This song was a great roller skating song and a great song to get all of your pals together and line dance. The Hustle, anyone? Who knew that some of our favorite dance tunes, then, could still transport us, now?

As I get older, I still LOVE to dance! Mr. Man and I host some really amazing parties and midway into said parties, the entire room is always dancing. Our music of choice usually will be collections from the 1970s. I always wonder why but then hearing that song, last night, at the game, made me realize that it's because for our age group, it was a time of non-stop fun, non-stop music and non-stop dancing. It was OUR time!! And we rocked it!!

So, do you remember putting on your boogie shoes? Do your boogie shoes transport you back to the time of disco balls and strobe lights? Pick a song that means the same thing to you and let it transport you!! It is amazing what it feels like to let yourself be 13, again, just for about 3 minutes....

Tuesday, March 2, 2010


Change...not a word or action that comes easy for me. It has always been a hard concept for me to grasp. Even when I was young, anything that came about that was new or different used to just send me over the edge with worry, fear, an all over uneasy feeling.

In my ever changing moods, I know that change happens and it happens quite frequently. And, I am fine once the change actually happens and takes place. It is the leading up to said change that drives me batty. Change makes my mood very unsettled.

Mr. Man likes to say that the best and worst part of everything is the anticipation. I hope I have that right. He has to say it to me over and over, sometimes. Mr. Man is the kind of person who really doesn't mind change. He takes the leap, jumps right in, takes a chance, all of that daring and fun stuff. I am the one standing there crippled with analyzing the upcoming change.

When I was young, it used to be about sleepovers. I liked being invited, I had a ton of fun when I got there, but it was anticipating the change of routine and going to a different, unfamiliar house, that would bring on a nervous stomach, tears and sometimes even backing out, completely. But, once I got over that hurdle and arrived at the sleepover, I forgot why I was so scared in the first place.

In my teens, I think I must have put away this fear of change because everything I did was spur of the moment, jump and don't look twice, run wild and be free.

Now, I am back to liking the status quo and fearing the change. Vacation planning tends to do this to me, too. If Mr. Man announces plans to go away for 10 days or 2 days, I start the whole process of dreading the planning/getting ready stage. I like arriving at wherever our destination is but getting there is the whole battle for me. I over think, I over plan, I over pack...I am an over thinking vacation planner and it drives him up a wall and me into a frenzy until I am seated on a jet plane with cocktail in hand.

I used to like spur of the moment, caution to the wind kinds of things. I still like them, I just don't like anticipating them.

This mood started as I was trying to arrange shirt orders for a womens group I am in. I am the vice president and all of a sudden, my mind began to race ahead two months. In May, I will be inducted as the president of this group. Me....in charge...do they know me?????? I mean, once I am in the swing of things, I give it my all. But, here we go again, it's a big change and I am big freaked out.

How will these women view me as a president? Some of them are so official with their date books, agendas, PDAs....I pull out cocktail napkins and write my meeting notes on them. I hardly think I will look very official with a bunch of cocktail napkins scrawled with notes while I am conducting a meeting. Plus, I am not a person who seems anything like an organized, in charge, president should be. I am the anti-president...the cocktail napkin note taking, scatter brained, party planning president. I am sure those qualities will come in handy when we start talking serious president stuff. See...what does a president of a group even talk about? As vice-president, you can sit and look very in the know. That safety net will be long gone in May.

So, right now, in my ever changing moods, I am trying to teach an old dog, new tricks. I am committed to accepting change, taking charge and marching on. I might be marching on while waving a cocktail napkin but hey, if I can master the fear of change in becoming president of my group, they can master the fear of change that is their new president.

Bring on the change!! I anticipate an interesting term as president!

Monday, March 1, 2010


The other day, I had some kind of flash of memory in my ever changing moods. It was a childhood flash of memory to my father. Now, those who grew up with me and have known me over the years, know that my father has been non-existent in my life for many, many, many years. Not sure why, and, this is not the point of this entry. I am not one of those people that carries around pain and heartache over this fact. It happened that my father left us, I picked up the pieces and went on, end of story.

But, the older I get and the more I reflect on things, I notice that little fuzzy memories will spring up from time to time.

This one happened when I was making coffee the other morning. I think it was the aroma of the freshly brewed coffee that took me back to a time when I was young and watching my dad drink his morning coffee. He was a big coffee drinker, just like I am. I think of all the things I took from him, this was it. I just remember the comforting smell of the morning coffee.

I remember him drinking coffee when I would visit him at work and when we would go places for a father/daughter chat or visit. I remember sitting and watching him drink coffee and smoke cigarettes. I can remember the smell of the coffee, the pack of his cigarettes, the smoke drifting up from his lit cigarette.

I also started to remember my youth and how my family would go out to dinner on Friday nights. We would sit and all chat and at the end of dinner, there was always coffee ordered for my dad. I remember, at the time, being so impatient. Impatient for him to finish that lingering cup of coffee. Maybe I had a sleepover I wanted to get to or maybe I wanted to get home to Friday night tv. So, I sat and sighed and rolled my eyes and stared at the hands of my Cinderella watch as they ticked the minutes away as he drank his coffee and smoked his cigarette.

In my ever changing moods, this whole memory hit me as just really bittersweet. Thoughts of a man that I now do not know, thoughts of my childhood and the comforting images of the coffee that I bring with me in my adult life. Had I known the images would have been so fleeting, I would have been more patient as he sat and finished his last cup of coffee.

I had no idea, then, that it would be the only image that I still carry of him. I had no idea, then, that we would become bookends of sorts. Bookends of a father and daughter sharing only one common interest in life, coffee..