Thursday, December 31, 2009

In a Better Mood

Leave it to PFunky to set me straight--and some uplifting words from Laurie to put me on a better track.*

I've been pissed off all day. On Twitter I was reading about all the "GREAT" and "FANTASTIC" plans people have for the new year. Everyone was so freaking chipper. Apparently I only follow the uber-achievers whose sole purpose in life is to make me feel like a big gigantic loser by comparison.

Where am I going? What am I going to do next? What have I accomplished so far? What do I have to show for my time on this planet? Why was it again I went away to college? And moved away from home? How the heck am I going to make the changes I really want to make in my life?

Oh yeah, and I'm going to be 40 in 2010.

It wasn't a pretty day.

Just moments ago, I was reminded that we are putting another decade on the books (I mean I knew this, but I didn't really THINK about it), and then I started to think about my life 10 years ago.

The roof that is over my head? Didn't belong to me yet.

The kind people I work for now? Hadn't met 'em yet.

The three crazy, rambunctious, big-hearted boys who make me want to both pull out all my hair and laugh hysterically every single day? One just went back home to live with his mom and the other two were a vague concept.

I may not be world-famous (yet). I may not be the hottest mommy in town (yet). I may even still have that nasty Diet Coke habit (let's not get too hasty with our resolutions), but I do have a life I couldn't conceive of just ten years ago.

Makes me wonder how I'll look back ten years from now.

*I hope you know how much your words meant to me today--always.

Post-Holiday Stress Disorder

I'm not sure what it is--the letdown after the holidays, looking back at a year, anticipating a new one. Whatever it is it has me in a foul mood and wondering if a good, snot-filled cry would make it better.

While everyone else is excited for a new year and new resolutions, I'm sitting here this morning filled with anxiety and wanting to hide.

Being responsible for your own happiness is overwhelming sometimes. There are so many things I have to pretend not to see or feel that it becomes exhausting--like playing a role eight days a week.

Fake it till you make it?

My stiff neck and nasty zits say otherwise.

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Playing with my Baby--My Lensbaby

As someone whose attention is piqued whenever photography is discussed, I'd heard the name Lensbaby thrown about quite a bit. The company has been good about using social media to market, but I didn't know quite what to expect.

I asked for one as a lark for Christmas (as I try to decide if I'm going to pull the trigger on my f2.8 24-70mm).

The day after the big day was sunny, so I went outside to play.

I'm not sure yet how I would use the lens in a professional sense, but it's definitely fun to play with. The accessory kit is a must for the fun aspect of the lens. In addition to a wide angle and telephoto lens and a macro kit, it comes with disks you can design yourself to create different spectral light shapes (star and heart included in kit).

There is some fine print on the Lensbaby site about it not talking to a variety of Nikon cameras (mine included) which made me think twice about using the lens, but don't be dissuaded. If you shoot in manual, you know all you need to to work with the lens. My biggest concern was that the internal light metering wouldn't work, but it was just fine.

So in the end, I'm looking forward to experimenting more with my new Lensbaby. Do you have one? What do you like the most about it? What do you use it for (you know, other than taking pictures)?

This post is not sponsored. I received the lens as a gift from my husband and was in no way compensated for my words. And the fact that I have to write this on my own's you a$$holes who will blog for a free coupon who ruined it for the rest of us.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

I'd Wish You a Merry Christmas if I Wasn't so Freakin' Tired

Holy cow!

I had no idea how exhausted my mother must have been during the holidays when I was a kid.

I have my three boys, the husband, my parents and brother in town. Not THAT many people, and I'm bushed.

My mom worked as an ER nurse when I was Santa-believing age. She regularly hosted twice as many people in a smaller house on a much smaller salary and never let us see her crack--not even once.

I am not worthy.

I'm 39 years old and it's taken me this many years to get all of my presents wrapped before Christmas have a dinner prepared the night my parents arrive (what? I take them to restaurants with cloth napkins!).

Mom hasn't had to cook one thing so far this holiday (sure she just arrived this afternoon), I have all the groceries purchased for meals through Friday (even stuff for lunches) and I'm almost done with my cooking (yeah, so I'll be up REALLY late).

But I'm kinda proud of myself.

I also can't see straight let alone carry on a conversation with anyone.

So if you don't hear from me for a few days, it's not because I don't love you. I do. But the torch has been passed and I'm the "mom" of the family now, and pretending to be organized is EXHAUSTING.

Merry Christmas!!!

Saturday, December 19, 2009

I Woke to #snOMG

So the other night I had a few quiet hours--a calm before the storm if you will.

Last night I was out trying to cram in some errands before the snow hit.

It started a little earlier than the meteorologists expected.

At midnight, the roads were littered with people who spun out, drove into ditches or couldn't get up a hill. My 13 yo and I toodled around picking up detergent, getting gas, watching the light show at the gas station (seriously. You tune into a specific radio station and all the lights are choreographed to the music. Without the music it just looks like a 3 yo is in control of the nobs.)

We probably had 3 inches on the ground by 1:00 a.m.

This morning I woke up to this.

(the last two were taken UNDER my car port)

The kids couldn't believe their eyes.

We haven't had much snow in the past few years, but the accumulation overnight was nothing compared to what it was by 4:30 p.m.

I tried to take a few of the same shots so you could see the difference.

It's dark now, but I just let the dog out--our 70 lb black lab. The snow is up to her back. Poor thing didn't know where to pee. Once she figured it out though, she was off bounding through the snow.

Little P asked me if the snow was going to be here when he woke up in the morning.

I think it's a pretty safe bet.

Hope you all are keeping warm on this December night.

If you'd like to see the rest of my photos from today, hop on over to my Flickr page.

Friday, December 18, 2009

The Still Hours

I love this time of night/morning--3:41 a.m.

One week until Christmas. Family plans to organize. Work projects to finish up. The next seven days will be crazy.

But now...right now. Everything is still.

I can hear the deep sigh of the dog, the muffled mumbles of a child deep in his dream. When I step outside the air is clear, the stars are crisp and no cars or wind or animals are heard.

We're expecting a big snow storm tomorrow night. The kids will be home with wet boots and jackets thrown everywhere. I'll be running to the store to finish my shopping; beginning my cooking for the family that will arrive soon.

But now...right now. Everything is still.

Friday, December 04, 2009

And Again

Most of you are just waking up.

I'm still wearing the same clothes I put on after my shower yesterday morning. I couldn't sleep last night.

A bunch of good friends came over last night. I had a little get together. I didn't stress about it. I didn't freak out about the way my house looked. I didn't even worry about the food. Everything came together just fine. People arrived. We laughed. We had great conversations. New friendships were formed. It was a fantastic evening.

I checked my Blackberry after everyone left. I like to look at my calendar for the next day before I go to bed--to make sure I didn't forget anything.

There were six missed calls on my phone.

I wasn't able to get back in touch with the callers. It was late. But, I was able to get a little information. The thing is my parents were already in bed.

The news could wait until morning.

My mom could have one more peaceful night's sleep before we start the whole routine all over again.

We've done this so many times before.

I'm just not used to my new role as the one who breaks the news.

And the fact that I'm not there to support them...I think that's even harder.