Monday, January 26, 2009



It is ridiculous and apparently doesn't work for me, because I like food and I like wine (hello??? I am the Vino Mommy). I tried Weight Watchers, South Beach, blah, blah, blah...I apparently suck at giving up food groups and get lost counting points.

Why am I torturing myself? Well we have a trip to the Caribbean that is around 40 days away, I have clothes that are a little more snug than normal, and the wedding of Ben & Tiff in July, that I would LIKE to look slimmer at.

So I am going to make a valiant effort at exercising, nothing major, start with some walking on the treadmill and go from there. Watch what I eat, i.e. portion control or maybe just making sure I eat slowly and eat a little healthier.

But you know what the real problem is....I really DON'T care. I mean I care about my health and making sure that I lead a good example for my kids...but the whole concept of trying to look like I did 10 years ago or some size that I *think* I should be really isn't important to me. Sure I look in mirror and think "is that still baby weight?" or look at old pictures and go "wow, I used to look good" which then leads to "I shouldn't have been so hard on myself before"...but really I am happy, I am healthy and I am bigger than I used to be.

The thing is, one of the most influential women in my life, is my Mom and to say that I think she is beautiful is an incredible understatement. The woman is intelligent, confident, beautiful, powerful and by the way not a size 2 . I am pretty sure I have never seen her take a bad picture (well not including the 70's) and put her and my Dad together and BAM you always have an incredible looking couple. They are so freaking photogenic it is sickening! Take a look for yourself...

But in all seriousness, my Mom encouraged me to exercise, make the right choices, but more than anything she taught me to be confident and love who I am no matter what. I never once heard my Mom complain about her weight or wishing she looked like someone else. Not once. So I guess I took all that to heart and really do love who I am and found someone who loves me for me.

So I guess in the end, I blame my Mom for my aversion to dieting and attaining the *perfect* body because she taught me to care more about me than some ideal weight or size. And guess what....I think I am a better person for it, but what do I know, I mean I also think Vino is the nectar of the Gods...

For everything you have done for me, I love you Mom!

Saturday, January 24, 2009

One Point for the Parents!

...yeah we keep score in our house, so what? So you may be asking how did the parents score a point, well...we got Ross to eat a vegetable! This is HUGE for him (ok, for us)...our children are the PICKIEST kids on the face of the earth and yes we have tried everything. The weird thing is that as babies they ate great. Currently our kids palette of food consists of the following:

Chicken Nuggets
Cheese Pizza
Bagel Bites
Mini Muffins
Pop Tarts
Bananas (Ross only)
Cucumber (Ross only)

I have "googled", read books, and surfed hundreds of parenting websites to figure out what we can do. Unfortunately nothing seemed to make a dent in the will power of Ross...until now.

We have been introducing a new food at each dinner with the notion that they have to take a bite of the "new" food before their other dinner and it is working. So this week I made the kiddos cheese pizza and green beans and guess what?! Ross loved the green beans!!! So much that he asked for more (Jack not so much, but we'll keep trying). Elated doesn't begin to explain how we felt, so score 1 for Mom and Dad!

Other than that, this week has been far better than last a long shot. But more later as we are having a little dinner tonight with friends and we are in dire need of a good house cleaning...and a little vino run.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Craptastic... might be asking yourself what does this mean, well let me enlighten you...

Craptastic = My week in a nutshell.

This past week was truly one of the worst weeks of my life...and I am not exaggerating with this statement. I normally avoid posting about work as I have said before, I value my job and would not want to jeopardize it with say a rant of a bad day. However I think I am "safe" in writing this post...

Take an incredibly screwed up economy, a slowing of business and what do you get...layoffs. No not me, I actually might have welcomed that and thought about it numerous times, i.e. the thought of losing my job would be less painful than letting some of my staff go. My sleep was nil..maybe a few hours at the most and my anxiety running at max levels. It was torturous and no amount of creative thinking helped to eliminate the inevitable.

My heart breaks for them as they are like family and I wished nothing more than to not have done what I did. Now I am not in need of pity as I am not the first manager to have gone through this (although I hope I don't ever have to do this again), it was just an agonizing week that has left a permanent mark on who I am.

Beyond work there is also the personal side of my life that has been hit as well, with my Grandpa relapsing with his cancer and no cure in sight...I guess the statement "when it rains it pours" has some validity to it.

So I took the weekend to catch up on some much needed sleep and hang out with my guys. We did manage to take down all of the Christmas decor before it became a permanent fixture in our home and of course throw back a little vino.

Here's hoping this week is better, the economy moves in the right direction, and a brighter future is around the corner...

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

The Big Apple... a completely different world. Seriously. I find myself in awe of the people, the chaos, the noise, and the contstant buzz of the city. I find myself trying to "keep up" with the rush of the crowd, so that god forbid I don't get trampled or bottle neck the masses in Grand Central. I am however really enjoying my time in Manhattan and feel confident that one day I won't appear as the outsider...maybe.

As silly as this sounds I was pretty damn proud of myself for navigating my way from JFK, to my hotel and then to my office with out getting lost once! I even managed to stroll around the neighborhood (ok, so a couple blocks) to check things out. Just imagine, I might actually get on the subway in a few months. :)

I did decide that my nails were in dire need of a fill and found myself at a Salon/Spa or so the sign said...yeah, this is when I was schooled in the fact that I am not from New York and sometimes it shows...the Russians (yes, I did find out that is where they are from) saw "SUCKER" on my face and had a hey day with me.

I asked if they could do a fill, which lead the lady to ask if I had ever had UV Gel Nails vs what I had on (powder gel), I told her yes, but it had been a long time. Well this is when she decided that those were the kind I needed, so off went my old nails and on with new. No big deal, my nails were getting a little "old" and so a new set would be a good change.

During this she also asked if I wanted a pedicure, hell, why not....I really did need one, but I didn't shave my legs and that is a pedicure faux pas for me...apparently that matters little to fact she checked my legs to see if the hair was long enough to wax...thank god she decided it was not. Now mind you during all of this they had a sign on their window "Manicure & Pedicure - $26" so I figured the pricing would be similar to my nail place back home. WRONG (but more on that later)...Since they decided the hair on my legs was not grotesque enough to avoid giving me a pedicure I went with it. The pedicure was FANTASTIC...truly relaxing and with the week I am having I needed it.

While I was getting the pedicure, a girl came in and pointed to her eye brows and lip...I figured she needed a wax...yeah, that's when the Russian woman who was doing my nails pulled out a black string and went to town...what the...was all I could think. Then once she was done, I swear to you, she pulled out a steak knife (wooden handle and all) and did something else to her eyebrows and lip. I sat in awe over all this and just smiled, bad idea. She came back to me and said "I do you, after nails"...what??? She had to be kidding, there was going to be no steak knife near my face or so I thought.

They finished my heavenly pedicure and then back to the station I went to finish my finger nails. During this time, the Russian Woman and her Husband tried to convince me that my hair was too dark and I needed new hair products. I held strong though, I mean yeah it is a little darker, but hell I just had it done last Thursday and oh yeah the Russian woman had orange hair, total pumpkin head and I apparently I was the one with bad hair.

After completing my nails (btw...during all of this she also tried to see if I wanted a bikini wax or brazilian, um...HELL NO) she came around the table took her "string" and started on my eyebrows and then came the steak knife...maybe this is why Beer Daddy wasn't keen on me wandering Manhattan. After she completed my eyerbows she looked at me and said "you no do your lip?"...yeah pretty sure I am mustache free so far, but maybe next time. After some googling I learned that this torture treatment is called "Threading"...we back in the MN apparently aren't as advanced or maybe we are and I just don't know about it.

After the fingers, toes, and eyebrows it came time to pay...that is when I realized I got screwed...$210 the husband said. I couldn't even argue, it seemed so insane, but I was tired and wanted to head back to my hotel. Luckily I grabbed a brochure and after some serious thinking there was no way it should have been that expensive. So what do I do? March on back after work today and tell them they over charged me.

Well I get there tell them that I think they over charged me and apparently that is when the secret, small print fees (which btw are not listed in their brochure) were broken down for me or aka the breakdown of how I got screwed:

UV Gel Nail Set = $95
Spa Pedicure = $55
Threading (remember the one I didn't ask for) = $15
French Design on Toes = $15
Scrub & Oil "Treatment" for Hands = $15

I know freakin ridiculous, but I figured if I pushed the issue out would come the steak knife. So what have I learned, don't assume anything and ask for all pricing first. Thank goodness Brian just laughed it off and hoped it was as good as it cost.

I decided to take it easy tonight and pick up a bottle of vino and hang out in my room. Figured it was cheaper. :)

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Welcome Back...

...yes, I am back and dedicated to the cause of keeping up the blog. You may want to take a potty break or grab a beverage of choice before you dive into this post, beware it is going to be a long one. What can I say I have a lot to talk about since I decided to take a little sabbatical over the holiday season in an attempt to keep my sanity. Which as many of you know was minimal to being with. Hard to believe the holidays have come and gone considering we have not taken down an ounce of our paraphernalia...we like to take it slow....or as Rob says, maybe we're just's a toss up. So considering my postings have been minimal at best what the heck have I been up to?

1. Christmas - ENOUGH SAID! But really the holidays were great, I mean aside from the insanity of it all (we wrapped Christmas presents until 1AM on Christmas Day...or maybe later) and enough time spent with the Family to make Carol Brady want to drink, it was great. The kiddos loved Christmas and we thoroughly enjoyed watching it all unfold through their eyes. Children seem to really add that element of magic that can sometimes be lost when you are frantically searching for just the right present or figuring out how to add one more event into an already over committed schedule, but in the end it is all worth it, see for yourself...

Christmas them and these true...
Christmas cuties...
Grandma Lon and Jack...
Trying to get a family picture (much Vino needed after)...

Finally some presents...

Someone made Santa's "Nice List"...

Three little Monkey's Christmas Morning...

A blanket made by Auntie Lowi (or Lori) with love...

Presents, Presents, Everywhere...

Some Cousin love (not that naughty readers!)...

Vino Mommy and her boys...

As you can see there was not a lack of presents, fun or love during the holiday season.

2. Relaxing...A LOT! Which means no traveling and how I have enjoyed that! Being home has been wonderful, not worrying about packing a suitcase, catching a plane or remembering what time zone I am in has been truly delightful. Unfortunately my bliss comes to an end tomorrow as I embark on another trip to Manhattan...insert sad face here. However as I said we did enjoy some much needed down time over the holidays, much of which was spent at the lake in front of the fire, playing outside, and reading (a ton..more on that later).

Time for some 4 Wheeling in the snow...
Beer Daddy & Ross ready to roll...
Jack showing his affinity for the camera...
Bampa & his Boys (Daniel Boone 1 & 2)...
3. Reading - Yes and A LOT of much that Brian is really, well fed up with it all. Almost done with the Twilight series and I LUUUVVV it! It may be a little corny for some, but hey I didn't judge the Harry Potter Fans, so I say let me be. I even managed to see the movie, which of course was not as good as the book (my mind is slightly more creative), but needless to say I am anxiously awaiting the next movie (New Moon) which doesn't come out until November (GASP...will I make it???).

4. Illness - Our house has become a cesspool for germs, how, why I don't know...but god willing the worst is over. I mean seriously the kiddos are not in daycare and we haven't been venturing out to public places, but damn we have "caught" a lot. Between Jack with Croup and the stomach flu one week to Ross with Strep and the stomach flu the next...I am doing my share again to keep the health care system bustling.

5. Birthdays - Well there was Grandma's, Beer Daddy's, Johnny's, Phoebe's, Jesus (and yes many other's) and most recently the Big Boy's. It made me seriously consider a campaign to remind people that if you have sex, beware you may get pregnant and you just might have a baby around Christmas and frankly aren't we already busy enough this time of year? I am just saying a couple weeks in either direction would be helpful. :) Today we celebrated the Big Boy's birthday party at the Brunswick Zone XL which was filled with loud music, bowling, pizza, cake and chaos. It was perfect. Still reeling over the fact that my child is 5 and wondering if the years will ever slow down enough for me to catch my breath or at least not blink and miss something.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Happy Birthday Big Boy...

...hard to believe that it has been 5 years since I met this guy...

...and today, he is even more sweet and wonderful than the day I met him...

...and funny enough today seemed to be just as rough as the day he was born. Now mind you my labor and delivery were pretty "easy" all things considered but I had my fair share of vomiting and pain...and well so did Ross today. My poor guy rang in his 5th Birthday with vomiting, strep throat, and a shot in the log. Yeah his day went that well. Needless to say, he is doing much better (considering he hasn't kept anything down since Monday) and despite his sore leg he enjoyed a little birthday party with Grandma Jo, Grandpa, & Auntie J. The one difference between the day he was born and today is that instead of a squeal sneaking out of his mouth I heard this...

Ross: I don't like this house (cue whiny tone and tears).

Me: Why?

Ross: Because you tell me I can't do something and I want to.

Me: Well, I am the Mom (I always despised when my Mother used this).

Ross: This is the worst day ever.

...I guess it could be worse. You may wonder what kind of torture brought this conversation on and being the horrible Mom that I am, I told him he had to wait until his Dad was home to open presents. I know, someone call CPS...wonder what his 13th Birthday will sound like?

So to my Rossman, Punkin Buns, Buddy, Big Boy, Snuggle Bug...I hope you know how much your Daddy and I love you (to infiby and beyondddddd). Your precocious spirit and personality dazzle us on a daily basis and of course your snuggles and hugs melt our hearts. Happy 5th Birthday. We love you!

Ps. Happy 31st Anniversary to my Mom & Dad (I know, I rock...I mean really having a child on the day of their Anniversary, like what other present will ever top that...too bad I don't have siblings), I know you are both sicker than know what they say "in sickness and in health"...but want you to know your love continues to inspire me every year. We love you too!

Pss. Tomorrow (I hope...) Vino Mommy will get you up to speed on life as I know it.