Showing posts from April, 2009

Maybe sardines are the answer

I don't know if it is more age (almost 37.5) or that I am not as physically active as I used to be, but lately I have had aches and pains that I thought were reserved for people in their 60s and older. Just this weekend, while at Mom's, my left calf really bothered me. I walked alongside a bike-riding Jordan and winced with almost every step. I bowed out of a walk the next day as well. Oddly enough, while at a park, the pain went away after awhile. I have no idea where it came from and why it left.

This came on the heels of my sore butt and thighs after walking in my hilly neighborhood one day last week. I finished the jaunt with a little run up my steep hill. I still would like to start running again. Of course, I have been saying this for over a year now, ever since I bought new running shoes, shoes that I took out of the box for the first time last fall, I think, just to make sure they were still there. I keep thinking back to the senior citizen I saw on TV last year who was…

Stuck in limbo

As I have written several times here and on Facebook, I am enjoying not working. Spending this time with Jordan has been like a gift, an experience I never thought I would be given. And not having to get up in the morning or sit in traffic has been blissful. Plus since the weather has been nice more often than not, I am able to appreciate it at different points throughout the day, rather than for just 30 minutes during a lunchtime walk. But I know this is temporary. And that is why I find myself looking over my shoulder, waiting for it to go away. A few months ago, I filled out some info for my 20-year high school reunion. I have yet to change/remove my occupation because I don't know what I would change it to. I don't think of myself as a stay-at-home mom; I mean I am one now, but the reality is I am unemployed and will hopefully be employed by September, when Jordan starts first grade. Don't misunderstand, I have great regard for SAHMs. I think it is a much harder job th…

Say what you mean

As some of you may know, I was "fortunate" enough to be laid off just in time to fill out and mail a financial aid application for Jordan's school. This "simple" form took me probably close to three hours to fill out and gather and copy papers for. But the most troublesome aspect of the form was it focused almost solely on 2008. If my 2009 was like my 2008, I would not be applying for financial aid. We have paid for day care for over five years; we would not have had any trouble paying for tuition.

But now we are down about 50 percent of our income, I have to pay for health insurance, and I no longer have a medical allowance that pays for dental, eye, and co-pays for doctor visits and prescriptions. So as it currently stands, we will have to pay for tuition out of savings. Savings that we could very well and probably will need for any number of expenses.

Concerned about this, I emailed the company who handles the financial aid, only to discover that they simply g…

It's like 25 in Hollywood years

Today, Brian and I have been married 10 years. As I wrote on my Facebook status update, it does not feel like a day over 20. :-)

Think about how many marriages in Hollywood have lasted that long. There are not too many, I am afraid. What makes these people give up so soon? I think part of it is that a lot of stars are self-centered. When so many people worship you, it is probably hard not to be, so it should not be surprising that they think they deserve the best of everything. And when they hit a rough patch, well, why not move on to find something better, someone else who will worship them?

I think another part of it is the glamour of these relationships. When you are first in love, there is probably a lot of romance going on. Cards, flowers, nice dinners. When you make seven or eight figures, you can probably spend 30 grand on a date without batting an eyelash, and that kind of date is most likely spectacular. And the weddings some of these people have, often fairytale like...

But whe…

fair tax, flat tax, they are all taxing

In honor of tax day, I thought I would write about a subject I have addressed many times before--taxes. Lately, I have heard a bit of talk about the fair and flat taxes. I wish I understood them more so I could decide if either of them is the "right" answer.

On the surface, the fair tax seems okay in some respects. You pay taxes on things you buy so you have some control (if food is included, I can see a bit of a downside, but for it to be simple, I guess everything should be included). For example, if I want a 20k car, if I am taxed 25 percent on it, then my car now becomes 25k. Seems hefty, but considering my income will not be taxed, not so bad. And it is not as if most people buy items like that all the time. Surely one of my smart friends can tell me what I am missing here.

The flat tax, in many ways, makes more sense, but I bet that is because I know very little about that. I have always wondered why someone making 200k should pay a higher percentage of taxes than someon…

The sun shines through the darkest clouds

There is something about the sun that lifts my spirits on pretty much all occasions. Watching the sun reflect off the Mon as I drove down the street where I worked inevitably would make me feel at ease. I do miss that.

While driving to church Easter morning, the sun was shining brightly. I told myself that this was going to be a better week. It just had to be. Last week was spent mourning the deaths of three slain Pittsburgh police officers and feeling my heart break for the family of two kids who went to Jordan's school who were tragically killed in a car accident. The week ended with Father Elmer, a beloved retired priest at my church, accidentally running into a handful of people after the Good Friday service, killing one and injuring others.

It was at once sad and heart-warming at the Easter Vigil mass Saturday night. Walking in the portico and confronting a makeshift memorial for the crash brought tears to my eyes. But listening to Father John talk about people coping with a tr…


Yesterday, I went to a local park with Jordan, as I have done quite often over the past four weeks. It was a beautiful day, although I felt a little sad as I had spent some time earlier watching TV coverage of the procession of the three slain Pittsburgh police officers through the streets of the city.

Probably an hour into our time there, I saw a police car drive up. At first, I wondered if it was because I had emailed the mayor just the day before, asking, among other things, if police patrolled the park. On several visits to the park, I had noticed people young and old alike sitting in cars for long periods of time. I am not entirely sure what any of them were doing; I just know each time, it left me unsettled.

When a second police car pulled up, and an officer got out with a police dog and started walking down the hill, I figured this was more than just a patrol. I waited until two young adults finished talking to one of the officers, and I asked them what was going on. Apparently, …

Bless me, Father, for I have sinned

Yesterday I took J with me to confession. I must not have discussed this part of my faith with the hubby before because he questioned what sins I had committed that warranted confessing them to a priest (this is what Catholics do). I explained confession was not just reserved for major indiscretions, so he did not need to worry that I had a boyfriend on the side or that I was plotting or had committed some insidious act.

While waiting our turn, I explained to J that I was going to tell Father the things I did wrong and then he would tell me some prayers to say. I told her we would be doing this behind a screen, and we would only hear (not see) Father, but it was important that she was quiet during this time.

When it was my turn, I kneeled in front of the screen. Probably less than two minutes into it, I heard Father laugh and say, "Oh, we have a visitor." J had peeked her head on the other side of the screen while I was rattling off my not-so-good deeds.

I tried to end it qu…

And back to reality

Some mornings when I wake up, I have no idea what day it is, thanks to my not working. Today was not one of those days, however, perhaps because one just cannot escape a Monday, even when Monday does not mean the beginning of a work week.

I woke up with my kid at my side, a frequent occurrence in my life lately. For years I silently chastised parents who let their kids get in bed with them. But now I get it. I just don't have the energy at 2 a.m. to either calm my kid down in her bed or to turn her away from mine, when she walks in, cheeks stained with tears because of some nightmare (not to mention Brian insists we keep the monitor on, which means we can hear every little noise). Sleep is such a wonderful thing, and I will do whatever I can to get eight hours of it most nights.

But more than that, I think I let Jordan sleep with me because I still feel guilty about not spending enough time with her. Even now, when I am with her many hours a day. I always said if I were a stay-at-ho…

The simple things

On a beautiful day like today, I can marvel in/at the sunshine and warmth. I started the day at church, where mass began outside. Feeling the sun on my face and seeing so many parishioners standing around made me smile.

A few hours later, I took Jordan to Frick Park, where she was content to slide down the cement slide on a piece of cardboard for over an hour and a half. I got to sit on a bench and do absolutely nothing but watch her laugh or yell out gleefully almost every time she came down. Eventually, a friend I had not seen since December stopped by, and we caught up.

Sometimes I need to be reminded of the simple things in life. I get so caught up in my world.

A world of worrying about money, a replacement job, and the health of my family.

A world where Brian and I nit-pick each other and I let Jordan get away with too much.

A world where I still feel as if I don't spend enough time with my kid (or Brian, my mom, and my siblings and their families, for that matter).

A world where o…