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Monday, January 20, 2014

Dancing Fool

Gus was so impressed with his friend Row Row's dancing and singing on a recent video (to Bruno Mars' "Treasure"), that he decided to do a little jig in Which Wich. I can't blame him; this song "Timber" is my jam too! 

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Calendar Girl

This is the year, the year that I FINALLY join the 21st century and use the calendar on my iPhone.

I don't feel like someone who is behind in technology. I'm not ahead. I'm not exactly right on time. But I'm certainly not comically tardy.

I mean, in my line of work I have to be resourceful. I'm a Googler. Big time.

And I use my phone for lots of things: I email; I check the weather; I Facebook; I read books; I use the Notes section for my grocery list (Or I take a picture of my grocery list that hangs in the pantry. My camera roll is full of pictures of a dry erase board.) I still don't Tweet.

But when it comes to the calendar, I'm old school. I just need the full month in front of me--at a glance. So I prefer the desk calendar. Here's mine:

A few weeks ago Frank and I decided to have a meeting (or I probably decided to have a meeting) to talk about plans, vacations and stuff, for the next few months. I said, "Let's get out our calendars" so of course, he picked up his phone. I hauled my desk calendar in from my office. "What are you doing?" he asked. "What? This is my calendar!" I told him.

"Why don't you use the calendar on your phone?"
"Because I love this calendar! I can see everything right here in front of me. It works perfectly."

But does it? I mean, when I am at a doctor's office or the hairdresser and I make a new appointment, I have to remember to go write it down on my calendar at home. And when I'm out and about I just have to remember things. A friend asked if we could get together to play. As she searched her phone calendar, I searched my memory. "Sure. We don't have anything on Monday," I told her. She said, "I feel like we do. Oh, yes. There it is. We have a birthday party." I had the same birthday party but had no mention of it on my phone of course. I admired how she had her whole schedule right there on this handy little machine. She said, "I'd be lost without this." Apparently I was lost too but didn't realize it!

The first time I noticed I was lagging behind in calendar technology was when I was on a writing assignment in California. Okay, this NEVER happens. I never get flown somewhere as a freelance writer to work on something. So I can't say it like it's all normal. It was actually very exciting and again, the ONLY time I've really traveled for an assignment. Except for that time I went to Paris. (Yes, Paris, Texas. Haha.)

So anyway, I'm on my super exciting freelance writing assignment and I'm meeting with this publishing company that I was going to do some work for. The owner of the company, another employee and I were sitting in the owner's office and we started to talk about the schedule for this book. The owner said, "Okay, how does your calendar look for the next month?" I whipped out not only a physical calendar but the wall calendar from my church. THAT was my professional calendar.

She totally called me out on it. "That's your calendar? It's like a giant wall calendar!" Now back then (2007), the expectation wasn't even that you would have a smart phone but AT LEAST you would have a daily planner. But no, not me.

"Did you just rip that off the wall?" she asked. We actually all had a pretty good laugh over it. They ended up killing the book before we even started but at least I got this free trip to L.A. out of it. And I'm pretty sure the cancellation was not because of my calendar ignorance.

So this year I'm kind of easing into it. I'm still using my trusty desk calendar but I'm also entering appointments and events into my iPhone. But I wish I could SEE it all at once. I just see a calendar with a bunch of dots on it. I have to click on the actual day to see what I'm expected to be doing. I'm sure I'll get the hang of it eventually. It just might not be until the 22nd century.

Friday, January 10, 2014

Lasagna Lover

Gus has become quite the picky eater. It's not uncommon for him to say he wants"Num-thing" for dinner. But when I said, "Who wants lasagna?" he enthusiastically said, "I do!" Now I should be honest and tell you that this lasagna he loves so much is not homemade. It's Frankly Fresh Turkey and Spinach lasagna from CostCo. It is SO good! 

So here is Gus before eating "Mon-Zon-Zon." 

And here is his "during." This is FIFTH bowl! He started on a sixth and finally stopped. I thought it ws so cute when he told me, "I'm going to turn into Mon-Zon-Zon!" I tried to get him to say it again but it's not as clear. But that can happen after 5.5 bowls of lasagna. 

Wednesday, January 08, 2014


Leo is REALLY good at creating mazes. I have to admit that, the other day when I wasn't feeling great, I was a little annoyed that he asked me to do like, 53 mazes. But they ARE pretty impressive. And when I can't get to the finish on the first or second try, I'm not even faking. They are challenging! He puts in lots of "dead ends" and lately there have been "scary pictures" (like ghosts or jack-o-laterns) at the dead ends. 

And I am not the only one who is impressed. This other mom at swim lessons said matter-of-factly, "That is a math skill, an upper level math skill." I don't know what her background is but I got the impression she knew something, like maybe she had been a math teacher? Or a mathematician? Anyway, I did not know that mazes = math so I was pretty proud. She went on to say that creating the mazes is much harder than doing the mazes. (And there I was taking at least three tries to get his maze!)

As usual, Leo is super humble about the whole thing: He told the other parents at swim lessons today, "I am the best at doing mazes!" 

Monday, January 06, 2014

Prayers from Gus

If you are sick, you'll want to let Gus know. He will not forget you in his prayers, even when you are recovered. A classmate was sick right before Christmas break and he has included her on his prayer list ever since. I try to tell him that I'm sure she is fine by now but he insists on God Blessing her. Guess it can't hurt. Grandmother was sick just as we left Houston last week and although she is better now, Gus still asks, "Grandmother sick?" during his bed time prayers. 

He has recently added his prayer lamb that Granny Jo and Popsy gave him a long time ago to his entourage of crib buddies (which used to just be Elmo and Cookie Monster but now include two stuffed puppies, a bunny rabbit and at least five teddy bears). Prayer lamb recites The Lord's Prayer, Glory Be and Hail Mary. Without any help from us (only prayer lamb) Gus can say them too! 

Obviously these aren't as clear and amazing as they are when he does them off camera but you get the idea. It should at least assure you that, should you become ill, Gus has got this. 

Wednesday, January 01, 2014

Fun Fitness Facts

Tuesday, January 7th, will have the highest gym attendance of 2014. This is according to my own anecdotal evidence, having worked in the fitness industry for the past eight years. This is also based on my having been a frequent gym goer since the turn of the century. So that's a combined 13 years of experience that helped me come up with this fun fitness fact (read: just a hunch).

As everyone knows, the New Year's Resolutioners will be out in full effect this month. But they don't start right out of the gate, at least when it comes to gym attendance. Today, for example, I hit the gym and had my pick of treadmills. No, they'll start when it's more convenient--next week. Yes, the first full week back at work, that's when the NYRs like to go from the couch to CrossFit.

But if we pinpoint it even further, down to which day of that week they'll be swarming the spin classes, we would discover that it's definitely Tuesday. I will explain why by listing the excuses people (myself included sometimes) make for not going to the gym on other days:

Monday: It's Monday. I'm tired from the first day back at work. I have a case of the Mondays. I'm still recovering from the weekend. It's Monday.

Wednesday: It's hump day. It's wine down Wednesday. I have church on Wednesdays (Okay, can't really argue with that.)

Thursday: I like to go out on Thursdays, like a prequel to the weekend. Or at least that's what I did in college. I don't actually go out on Thursdays now. It's just a habit to not work out on Thursdays.

Friday: TGIF does not mean "The Gym is Fun" or "Triceps Glutes Indoor Fitness."

Saturday: It's my day off. I got back-to-back kids' soccer games. I'm not even sure the gym is open on Saturday.

Sunday: "And on the seventh day, God rested." Me too.

But Tuesday? What excuse can you possibly have on Tuesday? Obviously nothing because I have noticed that Tuesday is the most popular day at the gym. If people can't make it any other day, they show up on Tuesday. So you can see how, based on all of this non-officially-researched data, that it makes perfect sense to predict that Tuesday, January 7th, will be super crowded at gyms all over the world.

So to those of you actually go to the gym in months other than those that end in "ary," I suggest you stay away on January 7th. Or any Tuesday for the next few weeks.

And for those of you who have made working out your New Year's Resolution, I say…

Easy, Tiger.

Start with a walk. Start by saying you'll go three times a week, not seven. And maybe, just to shake things up, try going on a Wednesday.