Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Don't Let The Turkeys Get You Down

I hate Audits

I have an Audit today
My nerves are shot, I’m sick to my stomach and it’s taking all my strength to not turn my head and projectile vomit all over the place

And even though I know we have little or nothing to worry about, because we do what it is we are supposed to do, audits still make me sick to my stomach
I’ve tried to maintain peace and order in all other aspects of my life for the past week as I prepare for it as I can only handle one disturbance in the force at a time

Apparently, the force did not get the memo
On my drive in this morning, the morning of my Audit, one mile from the office, the gentleman in front of me decided he wanted to make a left hand turn

So he came to a complete and total hard stop even though there was no oncoming traffic and he was turning into a parking lot that had an entrance the size of Texas

He came to a complete stop, counted to 10 (as did I) and then made his turn
I of course, when he came to his complete and total stop for no apparent reason as there was no oncoming traffic, also hit my brakes….a bit harder than I normally would but, he had come to a complete and total stop for no apparent reason therefore, I did too

As a direct result, my tote bag tumbled from the seat on which it was perched and landed in the well of the passenger seat with the items on top spilling out (and we all know what is in this tote bag so imagine the mess I had to clean up)
As I pulled into the office, I ran through a mental check list of things I had to do before 8 as I was picking up my tote bag and its contents: make sure I have tax returns out, chart of accounts printed, power of attorney form signed, sales reports printed, process payroll before auditor gets here, pray, poop, print tax form from Jill, email bosses about other taxes and call Gary, answers two emails and pray one more time, the rosary if I have time

I threw the last item into my tote bag, sat up and in front of my car was a big old Wild Turkey staring at me

I go to open my door and am met with a bit of resistance....not like a ton of bricks but enough so I stop trying to open said door, look out the window and staring me back in the face is Wild Turkey #2
Oh, hello I say

Please, I have an audit, can you move

Wild Turkey #2 stands there; Wild Turkey Number #1 is now pacing in front of my car
I have gas (a direct result of my nerves being shot and my stomach in knots…and the new found fear of not just the audit but being pecked by turkeys…..and that I’m 40)

I try to open the door again nudging #2 just enough to get him to move out of my way
It does not work

Instead, he starts yelling at me while jutting his head/neck in what I perceive to be a threat to my safety and well being
I close the door recoiling in fear, frustration and yes, slight amusement because if this is going to happen to anyone on the day of an Audit, it is going to be me

Turkey #1 is still in front of my car pacing
We make eye contact

He stops moving and stares at me for a good 15 seconds
I don’t dare to move or break this gaze we are locked in

I will not let him bully me
And the, he starts yelling at me (Gobble gobble GOBBLE Gobble, GOBble. GOBBLE GOBBLE GOBBLE) and sort of flaps his wings threatening me:  You wanna piece of me?!? You screw with my friend, you screw with me!

#2 is just standing at my door, staring at me and every once in awhile, juts his head towards me, threatening me, taunting me, daring me…..
Are you kidding me? I have an audit; please you guys…………let me out! I have a checklist!

I wait a couple minutes and honk my horn thinking that will scare them off
It sort of had the opposite effect – you know when one monkey in the lab starts screeching and they all start screeching? That’s what happened

2 more minutes pass and now I’m sweating…I have an audit and I have to poop and I am losing valuable time
#1 is now no where to be seen – I look around wildly trying to get a visual

He’s disappeared........what if he’s on top of the car waiting to attack when I try to open the door again? What if he’s behind the car and is going to lunge at me when I walk (read run) to the office?
I get my game face on and start opening my car door again nudging (gently you PETA people who may be reading) Turkey #2 with my door trying to get him to move

He moves enough that I can get out but still has not left and he’s gone all quiet…like he’s mentally preparing himself for battle
I don’t make eye contact and turn towards the office ready to sprint (read run awkwardly across the parking lot with my tote bag and coffee)

I don’t see #1
I dash to the front door of the office not looking back (but using the door as a mirror to keep an eye on #2 who is not moving and keeping a lookout for #1 should he decided to reappear)

Door is locked
Fumble with keys

Get key in door – wrong way!
Turn the key over

#2 is slowly moving towards me

Do not panic

Key in door
Turning key

The other way! Turn it the other way!
Throw open office door

Narrowly miss banging my face into it as I dart inside

Consider an army commando role to shake off any turkey that has followed me in but don’t want to spill coffee

So I just throw myself against the door and lock it to keep turkeys out

Unlock door as I do not want co-worker who comes in next to ask why is the door locked and I have to say uhh, I locked it to keep the turkeys out as that would just be awkward

Slide against wall into office (in case #1 is on lookout...this will totally keep him from seeing me) and look through blinds to see if turkeys are still there

One is still circling my car

Who knows where the other one is
I hate audits.....and turkeys.....

Maria the Mum

Friday, June 15, 2012

Post It Note

**The following events happened between 7:30am and 8:10am Friday, June 15th

I emptied my WHOLE bag looking for a post it note on which was written a work related password and log in for the audit I have coming up – sheer panic started to set in as I need to finish off the paperwork today but without that post it note, I’m sort of screwed……so I’ve spent 10 minutes sifting through my bag
In order to maintain a level of composure, I decided I would write, that always seems to calm me down

Awhile ago, I went through this similar exercise, writing about what was in my bag  
Here’s what’s in my bag today….and by bag, it’s the same tote I was carrying back in October….I know we’re supposed to switch out bags for seasons and other crazy reasons but I don’t – I used to switch out bags but I kept losing things….I’m safer in one bag at all times, trust me on this one….

3 hair clips
A crumpled Dunkin Donuts napkin which I do not dare to open as there may or may not be something inside it

Oriental Trading catalog
One Step Ahead catalog

Book – Wait Till Next Year – Doris Kearns Goodwin – if you like her, if you like baseball, if you like memoirs, do yourself a favor and pick it up

At least 4, no 6 random bank receipts
3 Dum Dum Lollipops

A zebra leg

4 packs fruit snacks

A zebra with two legs
Mini Cars Yo Yo

Burt’s Bees Lip Balm which I have been looking for for like a month

Loose fruit snack – and it’s really hard
A Maxam Lockback Knife

A Pampered Chef Paring knife
The fourth and hopefully final zebra leg

A set of keys (which I have no idea what they go to)
A pair of Lucy’s underwear and shorts

Thumb Drive
Camera Case (empty)

Stack of cards…a big stack of cards….I’m like a hoarder……grrr...the Father’s Day cards I need to get in the mail…..TODAY!
4 pens (should be easy to write out those cards)

3 Random credit cards (one of which has not been activated)
New membership card for the Boston Children’s Museum

Oh, finally, my wallet…opened it really quick to see if Post It note is in there….it’s not….but at least 4 receipts tumbled to the ground when I unzipped it – and a panty liner…why in God’s name is that in my wallet?!?! And I just used my wallet last night at the grocery store…was that in there?
Checkbook…strike that….checkbook cover…where is the checkbook?

Bills to be paid (must find check book)
Mail to be answered

New Vision Plan Card
Hair brush

Church Bulletin
1 crayon (brown) in three parts

3 Dum Dum Lollipops (cream soda, butterscotch, mystery flavor
Camera Battery (not inside camera)

Slimy loose fruit snack (eeww)
Three rocks (and I mean rocks, not pebbles)

Another pack of fruit snacks
Little note pad


Mortgage bill (paid)

11, no 13 Bed Bath and Beyond coupons (you know the big blue ones we all get in the mail)
Various other coupons from Target to Build a Bear to Hallmark

Thank God…my camera
Eyeglass Cloth

And in the bottom of my bag?
 A mixture of mulch, crushed food substances (I’m guessing cheerios, pretzels and possibly more fruit snacks, some chewed some not), dirt, sand (?), and a whole lot of coffee stains (which also adorn the handles and the sides of the bag….inside and out) 

Trash (lollipop wrappers, fruit snack wrappers, gum wrapper, rogue piece of gum not in a wrapper…)

Is that a Certs? Do they even make Certs anymore? Have I ever actually purchased Certs?
No Post It Note…..well, there were some post it notes with random phone numbers scribbled on them, a few blog ideas and a reminder to go to the cleaners (I have no idea when that note is from, if I was supposed to pick up or drop off and if I still need to go…)

I’m trying to close the month, prepare for an Audit and this morning at 3am, I woke up and remembered I have a Qualifying App that needs to be completed today as well – my palms are sweaty, my stomach is turning, my nerves are shot and it’s not even 8:30

I just found my Post It Note
On my monitor….the one I am looking at right now…it’s next to the one about the error codes in Jonas….on the right hand side…its one of 4…how did I miss that…..

I’m adding this episode to my ongoing list of how I know I am on the verge of 40…………..now could someone please start praying for me?

Maria the Mum

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

A Bride, 3 Friends and 2 Blessings

A couple weekends ago, Sean and I attended the Wedding of my oldest friend

As happy as I was for her, I was nervous about going to the Wedding.....actually, I’m not even sure if nervous is the right word…I was hesitant….hesitant because I’ve never met the groom, the bride and I have drifted apart and frankly, I was not really sure I even fit in her life anymore
Then I realized I was being a jackass

First of all, so what if I’ve never met the groom, I’ve known her since I was 14
Secondly, so what if we’ve drifted apart- once you become a part of someone’s life, you are always a part of their life regardless of how often you see one another or talk

And finally, I realized it did not matter where I fit in – she invited me; if she had the notion to invite me, I should have the respect and be flattered to attend
This is a woman who has been in my life since I was 14….she made high school bearable (well, the first two years anyway then she went and graduated leaving me behind…)

She encouraged me when I wanted to give up and she told me to give up when I could not see the forest through the trees or the trees through the forest
She and I have seen each succeed, fail, laugh, cry, gain weight, lose weight. We’ve lost touch, gotten back in touch and lost touch again but somehow, always know how we’re both doing

She held onto my secrets as tightly as I’ve held onto hers. We’ve been supportive of one another, critical of one another, and at times I suppose mean to one another but I would be hard pressed to not have her somewhere in my life
It was a privilege to be a part of her Wedding Celebration and I am so grateful she thought to inlcude us in her day

The ceremony, though non-traditional in my church going mind, was quite touching and very personal
It was officiated by the friend of the Bride and the readings and music could not have been more personal to the Bride and the Groom. Though I do not know the two of them together, I learned a great deal about them and their relationship during that 25 minute ceremony…probably more than I would have learned over dinner and drinks

I’m glad I went for a number of reasons:
1.       To see an old friend finally find happiness…to find stability and consistency…she found her lobster and I got to witness it

2.       I adore the Bride’s Mum and Dad so to get to see the is a treat, but to get to see them watching their daughter get married is, well, it was so heartwarming, touching and emotional on so many levels….I don’t think my words could do it justice

3.       At the Reception, I got to sit across from the Bride’s brother the whole time! I have had a crush on him since I was 14…….I was convinced I was going to grow up and marry him…even when I was at his Wedding (which turns out was 20(!) years ago) I was still convinced he would turn around and marry me….he did not much to my disappointment…..but I’ll tell you what, he has two gorgeous kids and his wife is a hot ticket….a total hoot. She had Sean and me on the floor every time she opened her mouth – I’m so glad he married her instead of me.

4.       I reconnected with three women who I have kept tabs on through the Bride but was always reluctant to reach out to – I can’t tell you why but I was

One was a woman I went to high school with – in high school I totally wanted to be her. She and the Bride were in the same class, I was a couple years younger than them….so I was sort of like the third wheel……joining the party late. She was (and still is) gorgeous in a very Marilyn Monroe Gentlemen Prefer Blondes kind of way and had this fashion sense and style that I adored but knew I could never pull off (she was wearing hats way before Blossom came along)
She was artistic, listened to cool music, read books that no one else was reading and moved with this grace and flair I envied. As we grew up, I would hear about her through our friend but saw her maybe a half dozen times over the years since high school/college – and always when I was at my worst (living in IL having some sort of quarter life crises, right when I moved back to the East coast wondering if I had done the right thing as I loved my life in IL but things had changed….I had changed and needed a change of venue)

She was grown up, married and a Mum before I could even imagine giving anyone but myself attention – and she is the Mum I want to be. Her kids come first, her face lights up when she says their names and her every breath is for them. She cooks and bakes and takes photos of her kids that are striking – and I’m pretty sure, based on the pictures I saw, they have her sense of fashion style!
Another was a woman I met first as teenagers and then as young adults….I never knew her all that well but knew her well enough to enjoy the few times I would see her through the years. She and the Bride grew up together

I remember always being intimidated by her because she was older than I was, way way prettier and had her shit together long before anyone else our age did. She moved away (like west coast away) and has always had a grown up job…..when I would see her in subsequent years, I always felt inferior to her (never because of anything she did mind you, simply because I compared myself to her and she was where and what I wanted to be) and in a way, I hoped that I would attain what she had attained – that is I wanted to be as grown up and as put together as she always seemed to be.
She and I got engaged the same week, married the same year and though my baby is 3 and hers is six months old, we are both finally the Mums we wanted to be …and, it turns out we are way more alike than I realized (although she is still way prettier than me)

She’s the person at the party you find yourself gravitating towards because she looks like she’s having way more fun than the rest of us….plus, her husband, who I was meeting for the first time, is one of the nicest guys I have ever met. His wit and charm matched his wife’s…..they could totally be Grifters if they wanted to be…and even when you figured out you were being conned, you would so not be mad at them as they are that cool
The third woman I met when I moved here. The Bride and I lived together for a spell and this woman was a friend of hers from grad school. In some ways, I was jealous of their friendship – I suppose because she was present in our mutual’s friend life when I was not…and they knew one another better as adults than my friend and I did….and in my head, because we had been friends for so long, I  should have know her better. 

When the Bride moved away, this third woman and I made attempts to stay in touch – not always successful but we tried. And the lack of success was more my fault than anything – I was floundering in ways I never thought I would be and just did not know what to do with myself.
Anyway, this woman had talents I could only dream of – and was so sure of herself…..maybe she thought she too was floundering but the confidence with which she moved was at times inspiring….and irritating because I could not do it. She had this amazing ability to make you feel as if you were the most important person in the world – and when you were with her, you were the most important person in the world

She has a great gift for words, can pick out a book for you to read that outs it all in perspective or can cite a passage to illustrate what one is struggling to say and nail it! She is kind and compassionate and could totally pass for Joan Cusack’s sister. She was so in tune with her emotions…the good, the bad and the ugly.....she was one of those woman who made you want to literally run to the top of a mountain and be all I am woman hear me roar….but she was so subtle about it….and not at all condescending or all liberal like about it
I realized, standing there as a 39 year old woman with a husband and a 3 year old, that for the first time, I felt like I could hold my own with these women – that I finally had the confidence to stand next to these women who through the years I’ve admired, emulated and yes, envied…..all while watching an old friend bask in the happiness she so deserves

I was totally having an I am Woman, Hear Me Roar moment….but at no time did I consider going all liberal

So to my friend and her husband, an Irish Wedding Blessing for you:
Happy is the bride that rain falls on
May your mornings bring joy and your evenings bring peace.
May your troubles grow few as your blessings increase.
May the saddest day of your future
Be no worse than the happiest day of your past.
May your hands be forever clasped in friendship
And your hearts joined forever in love.
Your lives are very special,
God has touched you in many ways.
May his blessings rest upon you
And fill all your coming days.

And to the three women I reconnected with, an Irish Blessing for you too:
May you always have work for your hands to do.
May your pockets hold always a coin or two.
May the sun shine bright on your windowpane.
May the rainbow be certain to follow each rain.
May the hand of a friend always be near you.
And may God fill your heart with gladness to cheer you.


I’ve been having trouble focusing lately as I’ve had a million things swarming, swimming, raging and running through my head and decided I just need to have a stream of consciousness...…consider it a spring cleaning of my mind if you will:

Sean and I have been married five years (May 26th)….I can only hope that the next five are full of as much love, hope, health and happiness as the past five have been.
My co-worker has been reading the 50 Shades of Grey books – I’ve been reading the Mitch Rapp Series by Vince Flynn…what does that tell you about me?

I asked Lucy the other day what color my hair is – she said black and white like a penguin…ouch
I think I have a crush on LL Cool J…..And I sort of want to be Queen Latifah…I see a trend and would not be surprised if I vote for Obama in November….ha! Kidding….but I do have crush on LL Cool J and I do sort of kind of want to be Queen Latifah…..

I miss Jason Varitek
When we started brushing Lucy’s teeth, we told her we were catching sugar bugs; it’s something that has stuck. A week or so ago, after her bath, she begged me to hurry up and brush her teeth as the sugar bugs were “buzzing all over the place” in her mouth

I used the word retard in a memo I wrote (as in the process, unless improved, will continue to retard growth and stimulation…blah blah blah)  and someone proofing the memo informed me it was in poor taste to call the people reading the memo that  name…I said what name…he said why would you call them retarded? But I’m not…so you’re telling me that word is not what it is…All I could do was look at him blankly willing myself not to react
I had another discussion with someone who informed me I did not understand the business side of our business….scary given that this is my job

I’ll be 40 in August....I'm not really bothered about turning 40…I am bothered by the fact that someone referred to the music I was listening to the other day as “the oldies” (it was Crowded House,  Tears for Fears, and the Cars)
Lucy has had hives since Monday night – no idea why, she just does. She now refers to herself as Lucy the Leopard

At Mass on Sunday, Lucy decided we needed to sit in the very front pew right next to the kids’ choir. She clapped after every song, Amen and Alleluia they sang. She also waved at everybody filing by after communion as she thought it was a parade….and to top it off, she was invited to join the choir for the closing hymn which she insisted I go up with her and then left me standing there with a bunch of kids while she wandered off…..
We have an audit coming up at work…that very word makes my heart race, my palms sweat and my stomach twist itself inside out…blurg

Lucy’s two favorite songs right now: Life is a Highway (the remake used in Cars) and Kokomo by the Beach Boys (with special guest John Stamos on the steel drums)….makes me laugh every time she starts singing them…..especially when she does her mash up and throws in Gloria, Baby Beluga and the Wheels on the Bus
I had this friend called Jenny when I lived in Illinois, she helped facilitate my transformation into a Parrot Head (did I ever mention I was a Parrot Head) I miss her terribly and she’s been on my mind for months – we lost touch when I moved and I’m not sure why I have not reached out to her but I am hesitant to do so....I hate it when I get like that about people

I miss being a Parrot Head
Lucy is potty trained – she woke up on a Wednesday and announced she would be wearing big girl underwear from now on and I’ll be damned, she’s been wearing big girl underwear for two weeks straight with minimal accidents (although there was an incident with poop falling on the floor but I’ll save that for another time)

We took Lucy to the Children’s Museum Saturday and may have worn out our welcome. We stayed about 20 minutes too long and she proceeded to throw a major league temper tantrum as we were trying to leave – that’s not happened for a long time and made for a shitty ride home
I keep trying to figure out how I can become a teacher, win the lottery or be discovered while working  my day job and not putting forth much effort…..like I expect to win the lottery with the first ticket I buy….seriously, I do…..

I wish I could be a school librarian…do schools even have libraries anymore?
Kristen brought some pictures of Jet over the other night which she had printed for Lucy. Lucy immediately picked the close up of Jet’s face and hung it on the wall of her bedroom – she kisses it at night before she climbs into bed

I miss Jet…for Kristen, for Lucy and even for me (I enjoyed our after work walks…)
I keep finding pieces of paper in my bag, my desk drawer, and tucked in whatever book I'm reading of notes and ideas for blogs…I really need to get focused here

Rizzoli and Isles is back, I’m pretty excited about that
I just saw a commercial for Dragon Software….I’m totally asking Santa for it

I recently read like 4 or 5 of Chelsea Handler’s books and laughed my ass off…cringed a few times but laughed really really hard….
I have a love/hate relationship with Facebook – I love being able to spy on keep in touch with people but I hate that they have way cooler lives than I do

I’m so over reality TV
Daisuke Matsuzaka is due back Saturday….grrr…I could care less….

It makes me crazy when people talk about themselves in the third person…makes me want to punch them really hard in the face
Hmmmpphh, inhale, exhale…..I feel better now

Maria the Mum