Sunday, November 27, 2011

Dear readers, it's me, Stephanie

Hi there. I know you're wondering where I've been. I have missed our time together, to a degree, and I feel like I owe it to the four or five of you who keep showing up to at least say something about where I've been and what I've been up to.....

I trained again this year for the Susan G Komen 3-Day for the Cure. I walked two to four miles, nearly every day this summer, in temperatures pushing 86 degrees at 5:30 am each day. I put one foot in front of the other, again and again, for more than 600,000 steps on my pedometer.

I found, to my surprise, that the emotional and physical toll that I paid each day in perhaps the hottest summer Texas has logged in decades, has taken the edge off my need to write. In the past, I have used this little forum to air grievances, provide comfort, or numb the pain that comes with the day to day grind of being a grownup. The miles I logged this summer, however, have taken away my need to vent through writing. And for that, I'm sorry.

I have lots of things I'd like to say about my job and some of the people I work with. But since I like my job (even when I don't always like the people), I think it's best I keep my mouth shut. I have plenty to say about politics right now, but I also have a deep-seated need not to piss off those close to me, so keeping my mouth shut is probably the lesser of two evils. Things at home are good more often than not, so I don't have some huge compulsion to air the family dirty laundry online.

I still find things funny and totally share-able, but I'm doing all that sharing through twitter, 140 characters being not so much a challenge, and all... I still find my daughter to be the most amazing human being on the face of the earth. Part of me regrets that I'm not recording her history here, but part of me rejoices that the times she and I share together are ours alone, not meant to be chronicled for the unwashed masses.

Will I be back again, writing soon? It's hard to know. All is good within my soul right now, friends, and I feel like I need to honor that and spend some time away.

I hope you'll keep me on your RSS feeds or check back every now andthem.

Friday, July 15, 2011

My friend is leaving me

Today is a sad, sad day for me, as I'm bidding farewell to my very best BFF at work. She's not leaving mad, she's leaving to go home, near her mother and her college age daughter. She's found a great job with a great company, and I know that this will be a terrific move for her, both financially and mentally.

But that doesn't make it any easier for those of us she's leaving behind.

She's been my lunch buddy for years, and although we didn't start out as besties, we have formed a wonderful friendship. She has been to me like a beloved sister, a confidant and friend. I've been, depending on the circumstances, her harshest critic and her most staunch supporter, and she has done the same for me.  She's beeen my sounding board, and I trust her judgement and her insight.

Life is going to bring exciting changes for her, and I am genuinely excited to see her off on her new adventure.

But I know my heart will tug when I pull into our parking garage on Monday and her parking space is empty. Her desk will sit empty, her parking space lonely and unfilled until it gets a new owner. Meetings won't be the same, nor will lunch time.

No more trips to Target, to Ulta, a quick run to pick up sandwiches at the place I always call Roly Poly, even though it has another name. Even now, I can't conjure it, but she'll know exactly what I'm talking about when she reads this.

My heart will be very empty and I know I will miss her immensely. I'm hoping that through the magic of Skype and email, we'll be able to stay in touch. She's a friend for life, and although we won't have our daily time together, I will always know she is there for me, no matter what. And I hope she knows the same about me,

I am surrounded by reminders of her, from birthday wishes, sticky notes, and the kind of artwork friends share amongst themselves. Happy memories of inside jokes and time spent together will always be with me, even after she's packed up her Acadia and headed west.

So it's with more than a tiny lump in my throat that I say farewell to my friend.

I love you, KVC, and I'll miss you more than words could ever express.


Monday, May 02, 2011

Yeah, I *know* a rocket scientist

As most of you know, I lead a simple life. I'm a wife, mom, laundress, chauffeur, chef, nurse, head cook and bottle washer. And during my free time, I work 40 hours a week selling things for "the man."

I am plugged into social networking of all sorts. Well, except MySpace, but I think we can all agree that one doesn't really serve my demographic effectively. As a 43-year old female, white, heterosexual, college graduate, full time employee outside of the home, I do have a Facebook account, a LinkedIn account, and *two* Twitter accounts. I am often recommended by various of these social networking sites to connect with folks just like me.

I get lots of people I went to high school with, and lots of former and current co-workers. Most of them are reasonable suggestions, except for the one co-worker that I really can't stand who keeps showing up on everything. But until today, I had NEVER had a recommendation to connect with a real live rocket scientist. 

Imagine my surprise when I popped open LinkedIn and found that *I* had been recommended to connect with the Lead Systems Engineer for Payload Integration on the International Space Station.


Yeah. You read that right. Lead. Systems. Engineer. HAH!  I fancy myself to be a smart one. But International Space Station smart?  Not so much...

Turns out my rocket scientist turned out to be the brother of my college roommate, who already has an exponentially more interesting life than me. And, a rocket scientist brother to boot.

I've enjoyed some quick little email chats back and forth, and he recently sent this photo to me. It's taken from the international space station, looking down on the earth far below. 

Kind of makes my life feel a lot more simple....

Sunday, April 03, 2011

It's not about the baby

It was eight years ago last week that MrG and I found out we were expecting. For more than two years, I had craved the soft warmth of a baby in my arms, the coos and kitten mews, the little smiles that just happen sometimes. I wanted more than anything else to bring a life into the world so I could have just that.

We tried and we tried, then the doctors got involved. Then came calendars on the fridge and medication. And finally, I felt a little different than I had ever felt before. The next morning, I found a faint line on the home pregnancy test. It was the first time I had ever seen that line, although I had hoped for it for many years. A blood test confirmed it later that day. We finally had our baby.

Nine months later, our sweet little baby joined us. Looking at her, I could see a reflection of my own face, and that of the man I love. She was soft and warm and cooed and mewed. Sometimes she just smiled. And she smelled SO good. She filled our lives with a joy we never thought we would know.

Eight years ago, it was all about "having a baby" for us. "I want a baby. Everyone else has babies. Why can't I have a baby?" It was gut-wrenching to wait and wait every month to see if we were going to get our "baby."

But that was eight years ago. Those baby days? So fleeting and fast. I look back now and hardly remember the midnight feedings, the little onesies and the tiny little socks. Diapers and bottles are just a distant memory.

Funny thing. Our little baby turned out to be so much more than just a baby.

She is now a beautiful, precocious almost 8-year old. She has a new best friend every day, plays Slugbug, and knows all the lyrics to all the songs. She has spelling tests at school. Good gosh she's got the Beiber Fever, and she's infected me with it! We talk about bullies and college and boys, because talking about things now will make talking about things later so much easier.

In there somewhere is a glimmer of that tiny baby we brought home, but I only catch it when she is very very tired or not feeling well.

My mom reminded me yesterday of just how far we've come from those early baby days when she asked about Mr. Duck, the security animal LittleG counted on as a toddler. She rarely asks for him anymore, but when she was very very tired and not feeling well last week, it was Mr. Duck who helped calm her and get her to sleep.

It makes my breath catch in a way when I realize now that it wasn't about having a baby. We did that, finally, and she was a perfect little baby. Seven and a half years later, she is a perfect little 7-year old, even if she's the tallest in her class and wearing a size six ladies shoe.

I wish that I had known then what I know now. It's not about the Baby. It's about the Life you create...a tiny little child who grows into a petulant toddler, then into a precocious first grader.

I cannot predict for her what the future holds for us beyond this time and place, but I finally understand after all this time why my own mother has seemed so amazed by my own seemingly normal progression into adulthood, marriage, and eventually parenthood.

For you new moms out there cradling your soft, warm little bundles of joy, breathe in deeply the powdery clean scent of a new life, and open your minds to the Life that is to come. It's going to happen. And you're going to love it.

Friday, March 18, 2011

A Quiet Winters Eve at Casa Garcia

As winter comes to a gentle end (or more accurately, a screaming stop), MrG begins his springtime preparation routine....put away the fire pit, bring out the patio furniture, fluff up the patio umbrella.

On this fine Friday night, we had some wood left to burn before he could feel good about turning winter into spring, so he lit a fire for the three of us. "Me Man. Me Make Fire. Ug!"

So, we sat on our patio, roasting our marshmallows and making smores. The birdies were singing, and the crickets were chirping.

Oh yeah, and the air conditioner units were humming all around us. Because today, the last Friday of winter? It was 85 steamy degrees in Irving, Texas.

So we sat around our fire, enjoying each others company and the last smores of the season. Then we went inside to freaking cool off.

Makes me wonder what July is going to hold.....

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Some times copying others' work is fun

Yeah, I can't write my own work, but I can dang sure point you (ha!) to someone else's post...enjoy!

Click here: Suri eats a penis.

Monday, February 07, 2011

Funniest Craig's List ad EVER

I didn't write this, or even find it on my own, but it is really, really funny:

Originally Posted: Tue, 19 Aug 21:03 EDT

Live in Nanny Needed for 4 kids (Pls don't call them "Precious Ones")


Date: 2008-08-19, 9:03PM EDT


My kids are a pain in the ass. Just in the past hour, i have had to tell each one to do something more than once. oldest: can i have soda? it's just a sprite? please? can i? no, no and no.

the next one...don't even get me started. seriously.

the twin six year olds: one wanted dessert before her dinner was over, one kept wanting to know why I wouldn't let nine year olds swing her around by her limbs. (the fear of a dislocated shoulder did nothing.)

Please help me.

I can be a tad difficult to work for. I'm loud, pushy and while I used to think we paid well, i am no longer sure. i work from home, so you get the pleasure of being hounded by me all day long. and, you get to pretend to like me, because i am deeply sensative. (but well dressed and a know it all, a winning combination I assure you.)

If you cannot multi task, or communicate without being passive aggressive, don't even bother replying.

If you are the type who doesn't notice crumbs on the table, skip to the next post, because crumbs are a deal breaker. they put me over the edge.

i have all sorts of theories on how to stack my dishwasher, and if you are judgemental about ritalin for adhd, or think such things are caused by too much sugar, again, deal break city.

You do get a separate entrance excellent studio on the ues. you do get air conditioner and internet connection and cable. even hbo. and showtime. you can bring your spouse, roommate or partner, but sorry no kids. If you ask, can i bring my kid, the answer will be...anyone? anyone? No.

If you can cook, all the better. otherwise, i'll teach you all sorts of things about pasta. (Here's a freebie, butter and parmesean, mmmmmm)

If you know anything about chess and violin i will be impressed.

We are not snobs, which is good. but then again, my kid sometimes swears to make a point. (We're working on it, but halfheartedly, because, well the apple doesn't fall far from the fucking tree.)Although I am told they are all very bright, they have not mastered the use of the oh so complicated napkin. This is a napkin Junior, say it after me...Nap Kin. Good boy.

i am not looking for Super nanny, or anyone who wants this job because they will love my kids as if they are their own. you won't. really. they are infinitely lovable, but trust me, they're mine and you will move on when your journey with us is over, and save for some funny stories and a delightful email every now and again, you won't grieve. Nor will we. (okay, we did all grieve a few of our past sitters, oddly they were all named Sarah or Kate, or Nikki. And Leah. Leah was delightful, even if she did drop my twin babies off our couch during a family gathering. Good times.

I don't want someone who has a lot of theories on the right way to raise kids, because in the end, I'm just a woman doing my best. I'm willing to learn from you, or anyone, but not so much about how i should parent my spawn. teach me to knit. introduce me to yoga, the white stripes, russian literature or the best place to get a burger in the village at 2Am, but do not tell me to put star stickers on a good boy chart. stickers irritate me.

If you are fundamentally unhappy with your life, you will be more unhappy if you take this job, so do us all a favor and get some treatment or move to the Rockies, but do not apply for employment with us. Also, if you suspect all wealthy women are frivilous, we are not for you. I do not want to hide my occasional bergdorf shopping bag.

If you smoke, please quit. don't apply either, but please quit. i have known too many people diagnosed with cancer this year. Even if you are a judgemental nanny 911 wannabe, no one should have to endure some of the things I have wittnessed.

You gotta be able to drive with a valid license, but if you've ever hit a human,move to the next post. You won't have to drive in the city, but if we go to our weekend place together, or if you make it to the summer and still work for us, we need you to run into town to get some pink milk, so be able to drive a mini van.

Can you swim? Swimming is good.

If you do drugs or drink enough so that you are grumpy in the morning and grumpier at night prior to that next cocktail, call AA, and peruse craigslist childcare positions when you have a year sober. I'll probably be looking again, and now is the time for you to focus on yourself anyway.

I need a team player. I need someone to back me up when it comes to remembering when the library books are due, and whether i have rsvped to that birthday party yet.

Help me dear G-d keep track of our skim milk supply and also, also, also, what should I make for dinner tomorrow night?

the hours are 7 in the morning to 8:30 in the morning. We'd be in it together, getting the kids out with clean faces, brushed teeth and some food in their bellies. Doesn't that sound easy? Doesn't that sound doable?

Then come on back for a fun filled afternoon 2:15-8:15 of activities and playdates and snacks and dinners and homework and riveting conversations about global warming, hannah montana and guitar hero.

When you do get to go home (to that swanky studio and possibly a significant other or buddy) your time off will be respected. If I would like you to give extra hours, i'll ask. if you say yes, you get paid 15/ hour. if you say no, I will not fire you or hate you. Except if it is a school holiday or if i have a sick kid, then i might ask, and unless you have a final exam worth 2/3 of your grade or tix The Lion King, you may need to help out.

Okay, if you're still reading this ad, it means:

a) i am a halfway decent writer and maybe i really will get that book deal i'm yearning for

b) you need a job desparately

c) you think this just might be destiny, and that you could be one of the few, the proud, the potential babysitter of our dreams.

D) you want all the information about job requirements, so that you can write me emails about how I should stay home with my kids otherwise they are going to grow up to be sociopaths. (If my pen pal is out there, wassup? Found love yet? No? How 'bout that.)

best of luck to all of you in your search for a job. Seriously. Job searching sucks. No two ways about it.


•it's NOT ok to contact this poster with services or other commercial interests

PostingID: 804253499

Snowmaggedon 2011

LittleG likes to type on the computer. Yesterday, this is what I found:

"I had the best time ever. I got hit in the face by my dad. It froze my face. I hit my mom and dad. It was funny. We hit the window and each other to."

I'm pretty sure she was talking about playing in the snow on Friday. Just in case, let's all try to keep CPS away from our house for awhile....

Thursday, January 13, 2011

New Year Wish

I wish I could take credit for this, but it came from my dear friend, MK....

Dear God,
All I ask for in 2011 is a big, fat bank account and a slim body…
Please don’t mix these up like you did last year.

Sunday, January 09, 2011

You know you've been married for nearly twelve years when.....

It's cold and snowy here today, so I treated myself to a lazy afternoon nap. When I got up, it was cold in the house, so I bundled up in my favorite polka dotted bathrobe and nice warm slippers.

I shuffled down the hall and headed into the garage to get the chicken for dinner tonight out of the beer fridge.

My beloved, upon seeing that I was about to get a healthy dinner started for us, called out to me and said there was something else he wanted for dinner instead of the beer can chicken I had in mind.

I went to him in the den, and he took me in his arms, which I knew after 12 years of married bliss meant that he was about to ask for something I was likely to nix.

He looked at me in my icky fleece pants, big polka dot bathrobe, and nap head, and I could tell from the look on his face that I had looked a bit more put together than I did just in that moment.

Thinking I could diffuse the situation with a funny quip, I said to him, totally tongue-in-cheek, "you wanna hit this, don't you?"

To which my brilliantly funny husband replied, "with a hairbrush!"

Saturday, January 08, 2011

Tweet, tweet

Seems like a whole blog has been a bit beyond my reach lately. But 140 characters? I can pull that off.  Follow me at Twitter ... sdfgarcia

Yeah, I know it's not very inventive. But I was techno before techno was cool, so I didn't know I needed some cool hip hop twitter (or blog) name.

I've been thinking about blogging, but it just hasn't happened.

Keep checking in, eventually my words will find their way out of my mind and onto the screen.

Happy New Year!
Lady Steele, aka sdfgarcia