Thursday, September 30, 2004

After two weeks.

It's been an interesting two weeks.

For one week I had a girlfriend here. We hadn't seen each other in probably three years. We had a lot of fun, but I was exhausted by the time I dropped her off at the airport. Scratch that, I was exhausted after the first night. The girl has some energy.

The same day she left, in came my sister-in-law and my very small niece and nephew. Then I discovered what energy really was. They were here for a week, as well.

It's fun having company, but it's a lot of work. For one thing, you have to be "on" all the time. You have to be able to roll with the punches, and you have to understand that your house will be noisy (all the time!) and that some people actually like to sit down at a dinner table rather than eating standing up over the stove.

Working from home was an even bigger challenge. Of course your guests understand that you're going to have to put some hours in. They will kindly say, "Go ahead and do whatever it is you need to do! Don't let me stop you! Just act like we're not here!"

Act like we're not here.

Act like Disney Movie isn't blaring on the surround sound. Act like you don't have to run the dishwasher for the eightieth time that week. Act like you don't see your friend pouting because for ten minutes she doesn't have anything to do. Act like you can have one clear thought. Act like you aren't contemplating working in your bedroom walk-in closet because hey, the bureau would make a good desk, and you can still get internet in there. Act like you're USED to eating dinner at 5:30 and not 8:00. Act like you love that you can't make any noise after 9p.m. Act like you enjoy sitting in your car to make business calls because that's the only quiet place sometimes.

I got home from the airport yesterday, and when I walked back into the empty house? I bawled like a baby.

It was foreign to me. Why am I crying? That just made me cry harder.

But then I thought about it later, and I realized that while I truly loved the company that I had, there was an underlying stress and pressure to be the best hostess ever and try to keep my business afloat. I was forever trying to be Patty Pleaser. And once the pressure was off, there was a huge release.

One super funny thing that happened? A client was kind enough to come by my house one day to have me sign some papers. I had never met him in person before. When he came to the door, I opened the door wide enough for just me to stand in the door jam, for I had two little ones that I had been playing Legos with behind me, and I didn't want him to think I was running a day care on the side.

So what did my almost four year old niece do? She laid on the floor behind me and peeked between my legs which were spread a bit. And then she got her Barbie doll and proceeded to give the client a puppet show. Although he and I both acted like it wasn't happening, I was laughing so hard inside. Mostly because I noticed that she'd make the Barbie sorta hop up and down and shake a little when I was talking. Like the Barbie was me, and she was acting out my conversation. I never signed papers so fast in my life. Although a part of me was embarrassed, I loved loved LOVED how funny she was.

And also because Barbie was wearing a kick-ass bikini.

Monday, September 27, 2004

Who does it belong to?

My almost four-year-old niece is spending the day with me here at my home office. Sadly, I had to do a bit of work for the first half of the day, but I'm going to take her out for a romp-filled afternoon in just a few minutes.

This morning I had to make some phone calls, so I set her up at a table in my office with some stickers to color.

During one of my phone calls she came up to me and quietly said, "I made you this sticker", and then proceeded to slap it onto my left breast. I was talking to my client and didn't look at the sticker. I heard her say, "It says....I love you!"

I smiled at her and mouthed the words, "Thank you. I love you, too." She smiled proudly and went back to coloring.

About an hour later while on the phone with yet another client, I remembered the sticker on my boob, and looked down at it.

It read, "Property of".

I had to do everything I could not to crack up right then and there on my call.

Property of.

I'm a marked woman.

Thursday, September 23, 2004


I'm on a conference call right now, and a bit testy.

Things I hate:

Pastel colors


Stuffed animals

Stuffed animals all crammed in the back window of a car, facing traffic. WHY?

People who don't pick up their feet when they walk.

The phrase "my bad".

Waiting in line. Even briefly.

Customer service people who hand you your change and receipt in a ball and then stand there and look all annoyed while you try to put it back in your wallet.

Virtual hugs

Virtual anything

Limp handshakes


Penn & Teller (although their Bullshit show is okay if you can get past them)

Science fiction


The fact that this call was supposed to be a mere 20 minutes and has already passed an hour.

Wednesday, September 22, 2004

She's a funny b-day gal.

I attended a three year old's birthday party last night. Daughter of a very good friend of mine.

She was killing me.

She lead the table in some cheers:

Her: Give me a K!

Us: K!

Her: Give me a L!

Us: L!

Her: Give me a I!

Us: I!

Her: Give me a M!

Us: M!

Her: What does that spell?!!!!

Us: Klim!!!....?????

Her mother was cutting and serving her birthday cake. She made us spell other weird words. But then got distracted.

Her: Give me a G!

Us: G!

Her: Give me a B!

Us: B!

Her: Give me CAKE!

I tucked her in for the night. We started this weird game called, "What are you going to do with THIS?". It's a very sophsticated game in which one person makes a funny face or action after exclaiming, "What are you going to do with THIS?" (She came up with the question).

She clearly knows how to play this game better than I do. Her winning moves were:

What are you going to do with THIS? And then smacked me on the butt.

What are you going to do with THIS? And then tooted.

You can't comeback from that.

I cannot explain how tired I am. I'm more tireder than all the tired in the world. Worldeder.

Monday, September 20, 2004

Hotel California

So, I'm sorta on vacation, and sorta working. Working when my company doesn't demand my attention. Which is rare.

Except today I made her leave for a while.

"Seriously. GET OUT OF HERE."

(Blank stare)

"Also? You're starting to smell a little."


"I'm sick of your STENCH!"

So now, I'm going to take a little nappie. STENCH FREE!

Who doesn't want to stay at Hotel Jan Brady?

Friday, September 17, 2004


Company came in late Wednesday night. Here's the score so far:

Meals eaten not cooked by me: 5
Glasses of wine consumed: a lot
Empty bottles of wine lined up next to my kitchen sink: 5
Supplied the answer to the question "where do you keep your...": 150
Band-Aids administered due to injuries caused by visit: 3
Outfits picked out for the wedding tomorrow BY ME: 2
Outfits PACKED for the wedding tomorrow and brought here from Colorado: 6 - SIX!
Hours slept: 5

Tonight we're crashing the bride's bachelorette party, that we were not invited to. (Granted, we only really know the groom)

Crashing. A bachelorette party. Because I'm 22 again.

Tuesday, September 14, 2004


My office windows are open right now and I can hear two dogs having a very intense argument. One sounds to be a large, male dog and the other one of those itty bitty girl dogs. They are cracking me up because they are both really stubborn on who gets the last word in.

GROOWWAARRRRRRRRRRRRRR (spaz that lasts three full minutes)
YIP YIP (I swear I heard a God dammit at the end of that one)

There's some construction going on in my area, and every day around 11:30 a.m. a catering truck drives through the neighborhood blaring a musical horn that sounds like "La Cucaracha". Instantly, I crave a taco.

I have a client who has a completely normal speaking voice, yet at the end of our phone conversations she gets all deep throaty sounding. Sex kitten like. It's SO ODD. Especially if you were to see her in person.

Her, all normal: "Thanks, I'm really looking forward to working with you on this."

Me: "Likewise! We'll be in touch."

Her, all low like she is completing her fifth 900-number call of the day: Mmmm, yeah...(heavy breathing)...okay....uh huh....(whisper) bye-bye.......huuuhhhhh"

I'm not kidding.

Now I rush to avoid it.

Her, all normal: "Thanks, I'm really looking forward to working with you on this."

Me: "Likewise!We'll be in touch.Shit,Isaidtouch!BYE!"

(Thinking after I hang up with her): Did I charge her....or did she just charge ME?

Speaking of weird voice things, I've noticed I have this weird inability to pronounce any word ending with "ing" normally. I always say it "eeeeng". Sometheeeeng. Sleepeeeeeeeing. Theeeeeengs.

Since I've discovered this, I now make an effort not to do this. Which makes me sound completely weird because my voice will get all deep and methodical for just that word. "THING!" "SLEEPING!"

I'm dumb.

And now if you'll excuse me, I'm going to go have some grapes for lunch and cut my toenails later.

Monday, September 13, 2004

Crazy Week. Crazy WEAK. Ha!

It's Monday morning, just before 9:00 a.m. and I just realized I've been sitting at my desk staring at my laptop all, "Doyyyyy".

I was up until 2:00 a.m. trying to get my shit together for this week, but still? Disaster. And forty hundred billion things to do today, let alone this week.

I'm going to have company for a week beginning Wednesday night, and while I'm excited about it, I'm in a bit of tissy trying to get myself all caught up and straightened out and work promised to people all done pretty like so I can relax a bit for the visit.

I have meetings like a mutha today. I'm hoping by the time I make it to the first one, other important sounding words will come out of my mouth. Instead of "doy". And slobber.

I didn't really slobber, I just made that part up.

Sunday, September 12, 2004

Insomniac Theater

Thank goodness there is a plethera of horrible television on at two in the morning when I can't sleep. I have become the authority on horrible-yet-can't-turn-away television.

Last night's gem was: Instinct to Kill. It was so bad that it was actually funny. And looking at Mark Dascasomethingorother wasn't too terribly painful. Although I've seen more acting from a tree stump.

Another three a.m. treat for me this week was One Hour Photo. Mork from Ork scaring the shit out of me, there's a new one.

And now I must go deal with a dead car battery. Joy!

Thursday, September 09, 2004


Yesterday I worked up until 2:00 p.m. and then headed out the door to meetings and such to return at 10:00 p.m. It also was 104 degrees for most of that time. There's nothing classy about showing up to places with beads of sweat on your forehead.

And today? I get to do it all over again.

Go, me!

Wednesday, September 08, 2004

Idiot Box, as my neighbor calls it.

I have a confession.

I watch this show.


Good lord. I think it's because I've always been thoroughly interested in the family unit. And I love to see how people run their households.

I haven't watched any of the episodes where they trade out the Dads (clearly Moms make for more drama).

I'd like to see them trade out siblings. I went to the School of Hard Knocks growing up with my brothers. I could take on ANYBODY.

And....I just killed any iota of respect anybody may have had for me.

Tuesday, September 07, 2004

I will always be a kid.

I hosted a barbecue on Sunday, and it was pointed out by my family that while I may be 35 now, I will always be a kid.

The adults sat around and discussed everything from mortgage loan rates to politics. I sat on my office floor with my teenage nephews and let them put in CD after CD of their favorite music - some of mine, and some that they brought in from the car. (Also, how funny is it that Van Halen and AC/DC are still popular with The Kids of Today? They didn't get that this was all music I listened to when I was their age.)

As we sat there trying to talk above the room-shaking volume, I thought about how my sister and I used to be the ones hiding in a spare bedroom with my young cousins at events like this. A part of me had always wanted to be in with the adults, joining in on their conversations. But whenever I was actually in the proximity of their conversations? I'd be bored out of my mind.

Sidetracking here...but one "game" my sister and I used to play was "Spy", which involved placing a tape recorder somewhere in the room the adults were in. We'd leave it in there for twenty minutes or so, and then sneak it back into our bedroom to play it back. We were always hoping for gems like, "JAN is CLEARLY the smartest child in her entire school", or possibly a confession as to what we would be getting as gifts for Christmas. But no. It was always boring stuff like "what happened at work today", or who was having a great sale on draperies.

During dessert, I sat in the corner of the dining room with my nephews, and we joked around and laughed so hard we nearly had ice cream coming out of our noses. First, the boys got in trouble for being so rowdy. And then I got in trouble for encouraging them. And then again for INSTIGATING.

How is it that the other adults there didn't remember what it was like to be a kid at an all adult event? And how BORING it was, if it weren't for the other kids. Or an aunt with a kick-ass CD collection. Why was it just me who remembers this?

Silly adults.

Friday, September 03, 2004

Gloves - perfect nighttime attire.

I slept with gloves on my hands last night.

I have recently discovered the nurturing love that is True Blue Spa. I can't get you a direct link to that line of products, but either follow the dizzying scrolling photo of their various collections, or simply click on the link for "our collections".

Anyway, it's some pretty fantastic stuff. I've been using the hand scrub and lotion regularly now for a few weeks, and oh do my hands feel delightful and oh do they look so YOUNG. I had received the 'glove potion No 9' hand cream and gloves as a gift, and thought to myself at the time "yeah right I'm going to sleep with gloves on!" (Not shown in the photo are a pair of white Minnie Mouse gloves).

Last night, bored, I decided to give it a whirl. You lather up with the hand cream and then slip the gloves on and off you go to your beauty sleep.

After laughing at myself for at least a half hour, perfoming "jazz hands" in the mirror (something I specialize in thanks to drill team in 7th grade), and creeping myself out as I went to lay down "I'm going to geeetttt you, SELF!", I thought for sure I'd last maybe a half hour with them on.

It's really rather strange to wear gloves when you're sleeping. For one thing, I kept waking up. HANDS! IN GLOVES! Ahhhh!

Then I kept telling myself to stop being a baby already and just let the stuff do its magic.

But waking up every hour because your hands are HOT and CONFINED? And you're wearing GLOVES TO BED for Christ's sake? Hard on the sleep cycle. This had better be worth it!

Oh and how it is. My hands are so smooth and soft and oh-la-la that I'm sure they rival a newborn's hiney.

You should treat yourself to some of this stuff. It makes ya feel good. Who couldn't use that?

This weekend I'll be busting out the "bringing up the rear" firming lotion. I'm just scared that that may involve cellophane on my ass.