Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Day 192: For a Quiet Day, I Was Oddly Busy

Now that I'm off the relentless treadmill of Hell Week, I don't quite know what to do with myself. I was busy busy all day, though I'm hard-pressed to say what I did, other than rid my Inbox of 100 e-mails — which takes so much effort yet, ultimately, what do you have to show for it?

I also really wanted an entire Treat Day to Myself, but I have something scheduled every day this week. My first unscheduled day is next Tuesday! So . . . maybe then.

It's snowing right now, and we may actually have a Snow Day tomorrow (meaning: school canceled), which would be our first of the year. Mimosa is performing in downtown Boston, so everything will be just a tad more complicated if there's no school. But I'll cross that bridge then.

Martini's basketball team won their first playoff game, something like 57 to 16, so he's happy. And I'm glad too, but that was a really uncomfortable game to sit through.

I'm trying to eat small healthy meals again, but my womanly time is nearing and I'm ravenous. And I want to drink a lot of wine. I am my own worst enemy.

Sorry this is such a short post, but I'm very tired and really just want to get to bed.


—Lady C

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Day 191: Deadline = Met!

Tomorrow, as I said, there will be little things to edit all day long, but the big ordeal is behind me. My 238-page behemoth of criminal justice . . . gone baby gone!

It is a good feeling.

And afterward I just wanted to collapse, but Li'l Martini made me go lift weights with him – "C'mon, Mom, if you don't move a little right now, you'll fall over at zumba," he said, which struck me as so eminently wise and reasonable I had no choice but to give in.

So we did bicep curls and tricep curls and an exercise we've named the Mockingjay, because we swoop our arms out like bird wings, and another one we call the Doorknob because the motion, well, is turning a doorknob, with our arms extended. And then we worked our cores and each did one more lift than we'd resolved to do. A good workout, all told. And I am all aglow and ready to zumba in two hours!

But first, a break. So many things have been piling up, but I can easily address them over the next few days, and also have some fun. And also get QUICKLY back on my weight-loss track. I haven't been officially weighing in because, yikes, but it's time to resume the program. My weight certainly has creeped up from the happy day I hit 259; can I get back there again by Sunday's Weigh In? I will certainly try.

I'm going to take a look at my ever-growing crap pile and then settle down with some fun things to read.

Zumba tonight, plus Ringer with my sweet girl, a light dinner, and a hot bath. Bliss bliss bliss.

Mimosa and Daddy are at the library, and Martini is quite crushed that they didn't invite him. "But would you have wanted to go?" I said, and he said, "No, but still!" So I suggested that we should start our own family, just the two of us, and he said, "YES! And let's invite Sexy Em and her boys!" except he doesn't call her Sexy Em, of course, and I said, "YES, and Brunie!" and he said, "YES!" I said, "We'll be the dessert and party games and cocktail family," and he did a dance of happiness. I know Brunie's more in love with my daughter, since she has boys of her own, but it doesn't matter, we called her first.

Off to sort crap and then read it.


—Lady C, who is certainly lighter in spirit if not in figger

Day 190: Whoops! Looks Like I . . .

. . . forgot to blog!

It's the last few days leading up to THE DEADLINE, I'm working at a ridiculous pace, and yesterday I had a pile of interruptions — marriage counseling, Martini's glockenspiel, a parenting book group at church I had to co-lead — plus my clients are in my face all day long, going, "I know you're trying to finish Unit 3 but could you please please please just look at this one 'little thing'?" — anyway.

It's almost done, and I can go back to my normal life of healthy living and taking exquisite care of myself.

That's how I remember it, anyway.

By 5 p.m. Eastern time, I will have turned in Unit 3. Tomorrow I need to be available for "little things" (and I know there will be hundreds), but today is my last day of working on these units, variations of which have been my regular work pretty much since 1996, when I became a professional copy editor. (Yet another reason that I cut these clients a lot of slack. We've been together a loooong time.)

It's hard for me to take in.

I wonder what the next chapter in my professional life will be.

But that is Thursday's question. Today, it's all systems go! I've got a 5:00 deadline to meet.

In a tearing hurry,
Lady C

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Day 189 (Week 27): If I Picked the Oscars

I feel like I saw fewer movies than usual this year. Then again, I don't think I would've seen Tree of Life or Midnight in Paris no matter how much time I had.

Of all the Oscar-winning Best Pictures, I've seen all but seven, and almost all the recent ones except the Lord of the Rings movie, because to watch that one I would have to watch all three, and . . . hully gee. Can't bring myself there yet. But it would be nice to be able to say I've seen them all, so maybe someday. When I have a LOT of free time. Hold your breath.

OK, I know that at least two of you are now wildly curious, mostly so you can compare what you've seen to what I've seen, so here's what I haven't seen, Lady D and Brunie:
  1. Wings
  2. The Broadway Melody (1928) 
  3. Cimarron
  4. The Great Ziegfeld
  5. The Life of Emile Zola
  6. Chariots of Fire
  7. The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King
In other words, yes, I've seen Cavalcade. Ha ha!

What a dull list, huh? I would like to see Wings, though. Kinda bummed I haven't seen that one. I've seen a lot of Broadway Melodys, I just somehow skipped THE Broadway Melody. And I'm not sure how I missed Chariots, I saw every other nominee that year, and I remember watching the Oscars with Lady D and squeeing when we saw Warren Beatty. I've tried to watch it since then, and it puts me right to sleep. Well, someday.

The others, though? Shoot me now.

But on to this year! This is what my ballot would look like:
  • Best Picture: The Artist
  • Best Actor: Jean Dujardin
  • Best Actress: Meryl Streep
  • Best Supporting Actor: Christopher Plummer
  • Best Supporting Actress: Melissa McCarthy
  • Best Original Screenplay: Annie Mumolo and Kristen Wiig (Bridesmaids)
  • Best Adapted Screenplay: Steven Zaillian and Aaron Sorkin (Moneyball)
  • Best Director: Michel Hazanavicius (The Artist)
  • Best Original Score: John Williams (War Horse)
Every year, there are one or two Oscars that are my "most wanteds,"  and this year it's Meryl Streep and John Williams. And I'm preparing myself for a fairly likely disappointment. But still. It would be wonderful. The War Horse score was magnificent. Meryl was sublime.

Tonight I will drink champagne and revel in the pretty dresses and have fun spotting people in the audience and laugh and weep and soak up every self-important overlong minute of it. It's the Oscars — my Super Bowl, my Super Tuesday, my Final Four, the highlight of my TV watching for the entire year.

Can't wait!

But first, 50 pages to edit. And the sun is shining, I will take a walk. And lift weights with Martini.

In other words: The life of a commoner goes on. Ob la di, ob la da.


Lady C

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Day 188: Oscar Prepping

One reason I worked so insanely hard yesterday was so that I could take a day off today — it was just too grim to spend the entirety of my children's vacation week, not to mention the entirety of the Week Before Oscar, doing nothing but working!! Yesterday I worked, tomorrow I will work, but today: I played.

In the morning we blasted through our chores, and then I took the kids to two Good Doughnut Places so we could do a taste-off. Between Verna's in Cambridge and Ohlin's Doughnuts in Belmont, we are hard-pressed to pick a winner; Martini votes for Ohlin's, but Mimosa and I would like to test some more. Fortunately, we bought a lot of doughnuts.

Then Daddy took the kids to Newbury Comics, their favorite store, and Mommy went to the movies! I say Iron Lady and The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo back to back, and I very much enjoyed both of them and am also glad I saw them in that order, because Girl made my palms so sweaty and was such an adrenaline rush, I'm not sure I could have calmed down enough to fully appreciate the quieter charms of Iron Lady, which were considerable. Meryl knocked my socks off. Honestly, I might put Viola third, after Meryl and Rooney (and keeping in mind that I haven't seen Glenn's movie). Viola Davis is an amazing actor and I love her, but I've never seen Meryl do anything that looked like this, and Rooney Mara . . . man. She was stunning.

But Oscar almost never agrees with me. What can you do.

And then I stopped for snacks on the way home, and we all had the funnest night evah! Brunie came over, and she and the kids and I gorged on chips and dip and mozzie stix and pigs in blankets and chips and guac and M&M'S and Twizzlers, and we drank and drank, and then played a million games, some movie-related, many made up by me: Salad Bowl and Consequences and Movie Mash-Ups and Who Am I? and Six-Word Summaries. SO FUN. Mr. Lady C was downstairs working and said he loved hearing how hard we were laughing.

And while I did gorge myself on Wavy Lays and Helluva Good French Onion Dip, truly my favorite ultra-disgusting treat, I also ate a ton of fresh veggies (I think I was the only person at the table who touched the veggie plate – I offered Li'l Martini a carrot stick and he recoiled) and lots of grapes, and while I assume my weight will be up tomorrow, still, it won't be terrible. I have to believe that the muscle mass I'm building with Li'l Martini is working for me, metabolism-wise. And Brunie said I look noticeably smaller, which is awesome.

Three more days of hell. I can get through it. And then I will play play PLAY!

No matter what, though, I'm watching the Oscars tomorrow. LOVE the Oscars!!!!

Off to bed, with a smile on my face.

Lady C

Friday, February 24, 2012

Day 187: Brain. So. Tired.

Edited 80 pages. EIGHTY.

With, like, my brain.

Ow. My FORMER brain.

Lifted weights with Martini. Hard.

Ate . . . orange for lunch? Maybe slice of cheese?

Sat. All day.

So. tired.

Sardines for dinner. Wine. In glass.

Family went to movie. Spirited Away guy's movie about . . . little people.

Happy birthday, best friend! She is 50. SO OLD, wow. She can mentor me. Hee. Love you, honeybunny.

Will write more tomorrow.

Must collapse in tub.

Brain . . . leaking, maybe.

Coffee? I think yes.

bye bye

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Day 186: Today's Topic Is . . . Huh.

How is Hell Week/New Attitude, you ask?

Every day is a little bit more difficult. There is just so much freakin' work to do! And I've been thinking of the 29th as my deadline, but then it occurred to me: That's the last day we can bill to the project. My clients will need at least a day to review and input my edits. So, holy crap — does that mean I have to get all this done by the 28th?? The mind reels.

(I e-mailed the client and asked that question, possibly leaving out the word "crap," but they have yet to get back to me. They are really irritating me!! But — they're also my meal ticket. What can you do.)

So I stared at the Google images page for a full two minutes, trying to imagine what on earth to use for today. Seriously — I did almost nothing but work, from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.!! 

But: I took Li'l Martini for his yearly check-up, and my strapping 11 year old is now 5'2". We worship height in the Chardonnay family; this is glorious news!

And: I finished Unit 6, hurrah! Only one unit to go! (It should be noted that Unit 6 was 122 pages. Unit 3 is 231 pages.)

But I told myself that if I could get through 50 pages of Unit 3: Criminal Justice Monster, I would declare myself done for the day, and oh! the exquisite relief when I hit page 50!

I took to my bed with a cup of coffee and watched half an hour of Medium, my latest Netflix treat (I loved that show and watched it fairly avidly at first, but then I think it changed nights or something and I kept forgetting about it; there are tons of episodes I haven't seen), then Martini crawled in next to me and we read another chapter of The Hunger Games (Katniss and Peeta have teamed up! Peeta is dying! Katniss just roofied him!), and then Mimosa came in and we watched Ringer, our most favorite of all the craptastic TV shows we watch. Two hours of unadulterated BLISS.

Once I've made it through Hell Week, I'm going to take an entire week of and do nothing but sit and stare.

OK, I'll do that for 20 minutes, and then I'll do a ton of fun stuff, but seriously — no work for a full week. It's what I'm currently living for.

I still have hopes that I can squeeze in three more Oscar movies — Iron Lady, The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo, and Albert Nobbs — but we'll see.

Tomorrow is the first day this week that I've had nothing scheduled — nowhere I have to take the kids, nowhere I have to be. I would really like to take a long walk, if the weather holds up, and get good and sweaty, and do something fun with the kids, in the midst of the work work work. We shall see!

But now, to bed. And probably one more episode of Medium. And maybe another cup of coffee. Given the amount of caffeine that constantly flows through my veins, it's a wonder I can even close my eyes.

xx Lady C

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Day 185: Tote That Barge! Lift That Bale!

A few bumps in my Road to Happiness and Health today.

Challenge #1: Yesterday's clean and easy-breezy editing pages were a fluke. I sailed through 60 pages yesterday; today, it took me the entire freaking day to slog through half that amount. I begged the client not to give it to me until it was as clean as possible, and she chirped that it was . . . and instead I'm finding references to things that don't exist, activities that don't match their descriptions, handouts that are dense and impenetrable. If this is the clean document, how I dread the one that's coming.

Challenge #2: I took my kids for another walk in the sunshine, this time to Trader Joe's, as we were building up a hefty shopping list. And then this kinda backfired, as we ended up with five crammed-full bags of groceries and Cardiac Crest to ascend. Huff, puff, pant. I had gorilla arms by the time we got home. On the list of Mommy's All-Time Fun Family Outings, this one's probably in the negative numbers.

Challenge #3: I was determined not to go to a restaurant today, which meant that lucky Mommy had not one but two meals to prepare, plus we had a guest (Nonstop was here for four hours). (Mr. Lady C would have helped, but today is his long day at the office; he left early for a dermatologist appointment, and didn't get home till Modern Family started.)

(Oh, and he also seems to have foot cancer. Or perhaps I should say: One of the moles on his feet worried the doc, and she punched it out with a hole punch and is having it biopsied. Stay tuned!)

Challenge #4: Kind Tina was having a terrible, awful, no-good day and needed me to talk her down. Which I am happy to do, I adore Kind Tina and would in fact take a bullet for her, but it was an upsetting conversation. I worry about my friend. And, you know, it took some time.

So that was really it. I did take breaks (I read the saddest chapter of The Hunger Games to Li'l Martini, the one where Rue . . . you know . . . and I bawled and bawled) but it felt like a long, long day. And I had so dreamed of being done with this stupid unit today, and I'm so frustrated with my client.

But what can you do. I took some exercise, breathed the fresh air of New England, and ate nothing to be ashamed of.


—Lady C

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Day 184: Hell Week, New Attitude, Day 1

I am so so so happy with this new approach.

It's another gorgeous day in Arlington. I got up early and set to work, taking brief breaks for breakfast and coffee. Worked some more, then took another break to wash my hair and get dressed. And I am zooming through my work (it helps that the writing is fairly clean and that this module is half the size of the others), which feels great.

At 12:30 the kids and I headed down our hill for a brisk walk and lunch in the village. I promised them we could stop any place that looked interesting, so after a quick trip to the Post Office — (packages should arrive at your house on Thursday, Lady D! Look for two) — the afternoon was ours.

We convinced Li'l Martini to try Thai food (he was very skeptical) and ordered a bunch of yummy appetizers. The kids enjoyed crispy fried crab rangoon, Thai rolls, and scallion pancakes, and I mostly dined on fresh rolls (lettuce, shrimp, tofu), and it was a delicious lunch. Martini's a convert, yay! A new family restaurant in the 'hood, we don't have to eat Mexican every time. Which is no hardship, I love Mexican, but a lighter option will be lovely.

My goal for us was to walk all the way to my vet's (a mile from our house, downhill) to pick up some cat treats, and then walk back (uphill, what can you do). And we did it! We stopped at Firefly Moon, a cute local boutique, and just as I was telling Li'l Martini to keep his hands in his pockets and be careful, I turned abruptly and knocked over a sign. Then Mimosa dropped the large metal jeweled purse clip she was examining, with a loud crash. In short: Every Chardonnay did something destructive except Martini. Yeah.

We grabbed a new takeout menu from Nicola's, our favorite pizza joint, bought cookies at Lakota Bakery (THE BEST), bought yet another cookie at a new bakery, Angelina's, and had a nice chat with the lovely young proprietress, read the inscriptions on the large stones set in a memorial "park" (a strip of land half the size of a California driveway — marking what claims to be a bloodier site than any of the neighboring communities during the Revolution), popped into Tweet! Tweet!, an overpriced fancy toy store, where we had great fun "trying on" all the hand puppets and talking gibberish, and ending our village crawl at Balich's Five and Dime, the most low-rent, crowded store imaginable; I do not know how that man stays in business. How many people can possibly need bias tape, fly swatters, and mothballs? It's got to be a front for something more unsavory.

But I'm not here to judge.

And then we walked briskly up our hill (the slightly longer, less steep way — it's easier to walk briskly), and I went back to work. And after 90 minutes, I got up again and lifted weights and did core work with Martini. (Mimosa was glued to YouTube, watching videos of all the music from our new obsession, Smash.)

And that was really the end of my work day; Mimosa had a doctor's appointment at 4:40, and then, rather than brave rush-hour traffic, we went out to dinner near her doctor's. And then we came home and watched a mountain of TV: our videotape of last week's Glee and Ringer, then Glee in real time, also New Girl and Raising Hope. (Love Tuesday night TV!) And I read a chapter of Hunger Games to Martini, and now here I am. I was thinking I might do a tad more work — maybe I'll start and see how I feel.

I don't want to jinx things, but this module is going so well, I might even finish it tomorrow! I'm already halfway through my first read, and you saw how much other stuff I did today.

And the thing is: I feel awesome! Yes, I had two restaurant meals, which I wasn't planning, but I got a ton of fresh air and exercise and family time and all that good stuff, and my restaurant meals were both packed with vegetables (I had a Mediterranean salad and an antipasto plate for dinner). And it was all really, really fun.

I'm looking forward to tomorrow!


—Lady C

Monday, February 20, 2012

Day 183: Hey! I'm a Dope!

So, the next 10 days are going to be pretty miserable, right? All work, no play, poor pitiful Lady C, blah blah blah. And my approach for the past two days has been to compound the misery by punishing my body: not getting exercise, not getting sunshine and fresh air, eating crap, not getting enough sleep, running on coffee.

(Well, I do that last thing every day . . . because I love it. But, while I don't think it's necessarily bad for me, I'm sure I probably overdo.)

Today I had a few free hours before the next unit showed up, which felt incredibly luxurious — and I thought: What would be most helpful to me right now? How can I make the most of this time? And two answers came to me without hesitation: Do something nice for my body, and do the things that are most pressing, so I can feel like I Got Something Done, and I'll be less anxious when it's time to go back to work.

So I wrapped Lady Darcy's presents and got them ready to mail, did my housework (since I missed Chore Day, shackled to the computer as I was all morning — and I really hate it when the house is dirty; now everything sparkles with cleanness, and I am happy), took a long walk, ate small healthy meals, and finished updating the registration forms for the Betsy-Tacy Convention. (Those crazy broads!) And I feel refreshed and rejuvenated and ready to tackle Module 6 (which just showed up).

And all this made me realize that compounding the misery is a ridiculous approach to my upcoming Hell Week. My work life will be miserable — it's a given. So I should do everything I can to make everything that isn't my work life unmiserable.

My plan is to set a timer and get up every two hours to do something brief and active, whether it's a brisk stroll around my block or a quick zumba routine — 10 minutes of heart-pumping action. (Husband says he has a few ideas. Actually, he just has one idea.) And I will make sure that I have lots and lots of healthy snacks handy, since when I'm miserable at work, I do want a treat. Frequently. But snap peas and edamame hummus, or apple slices and almond butter (two things that I know we have on hand), feels like a treat. I should be okay.

I feel so much better about this new approach!

And now, to work. But I'm only going to work until dinner time (Husband is making chicken tetrazzini and roasted asparagus, yum), and then I'm going to fold laundry and watch a million TV shows with Mimosa — we have two episodes of Smash to watch, plus last week's Ringer, and I will cuddle up with my girl and be happy and get to bed at a reasonable hour.

And hit the ground running tomorrow!


—Lady C, with a New Attitude

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Day 182 (Week 26): My Ridiculous Day

  • Got up, poured coffee, sat down at computer, worked.
    Worked, worked, worked.
  • Had leftover pizza from Li'l Martini's party for lunch. Ate while working.
  • Worked, worked.
    Read Martini another chapter of The Hunger Games.
  • Took Mimosa to the library, shopped for the last of Lady Darcy's birthday presents. (My besty has a milestone birthday on Friday!)
  • Came home, worked, worked, worked.
  • Went out for Mexican food with the family, resisted urge to drink 20 margaritas.
  • Came home, worked, worked worked.
  • Finished just in time to take a hot shower and then collapse in front of Downton Abbey for two hours. BLISS.
One module down, two to go.
The timing is wretched. It's school vacation week, I should be doing fun things with my dear children, not to mention cramming on Oscar movies. But what can I do — these clients have been my sugar mamas for years, I can't desert them now, and as my friend Marybell says, At least you have a deadline —the end is in sight. Which is true. But it's still wretched, and I am feeling very gloomy about my lot in life.

Weight loss, shmeight loss, I'm going to have a bowl of ice cream and watch my tape of The Good Wife. Don't talk to me of diet and exercise when my daily existence is so harsh!!

Grr grr,
Lady C

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Day 181: This Is Me in One More Second

I worked almost 10 hours today. (On a Saturday!) Crazytown. Once I finish this awful module, there are two more to go, and I have to be done by February 29 . . . at which point we all lose our jobs, so there's a real incentive, yes sirree.


I'm inclined to put weight loss on the back burner until then — I fear it's going to be 10 days of comfort food and sloth. But we shall see.

Good Neighbor Anne invited me for a walk on the bike path on this beautiful morning, and it killed me to say no — but I had to. Morning is my most productive time, and I am really worried about getting this done . . . to my level of satisfaction, I guess I should add. No one enters the field of copy editing because he or she has low standards. Perfection is not a human option, but dammit, we keep trying.

Husband and I ducked out for a few hours to have dinner with two dear longtime friends, and that was great fun — but then I came home and worked for another 90 minutes, gritting my teeth and guzzling a Dunkin Donuts Extra Large Coffee.

It is what it is.

Gotta go to bed, so I can rest up and get right back on the editing treadmill tomorrow.

Sweet dreams, mon cheries!

—Lady C, working girl

Friday, February 17, 2012

Day 180: Party o' the Year!

Well, I did it, and it was pretty awesome!

We had five boys here: Li'l Martini, Shrieki, Nonstop, Mr. Critic, and HoneyBear — all very old, very dear friends, though, as their names suggest, I find some of them easier on the nerves than others. And I spent at least a few hours this evening envying Mr. Lady C's encroaching deafness, I'll tell you that.

The boys had pizza and salad (mostly ignored) and grapes, and two kinds of cupcakes — chocolate and red velvet — and giant chocolate chip cookies and four kinds of ice cream, and it was a spree of gluttony. And then they played hide and seek and Manhunt and let's try to kill each other with our party horns – you know, all those things that 11-year-old boys do. And then we packed them into two cars and headed off for an evening of Improv in Arlington Center, which was a hoot and a half. We told them as we bought our tickets that we were celebrating a birthday, and two slinky teen girls sang "Happy Birthday" to Martini while he turned 11 shades of crimson. So that was awesome as well.

But it was not a great weight loss day. I worked all day and didn't exercise, and then I rewarded myself for how hard I'm working and how grim my life is with a simply enormous lunch at Asian Fusion Hoody Doody, and then I sampled two of the pizzas and two of the ice creams, and also ate a red velvet cupcake (I got them at a bakery. Conclusion: Not as good as mine. Hey, maybe I should open a bakery!) (NOT), and somewhere in there I had — ahem! — a glass or two of wine.

And tomorrow, with a house full of leftover pizza and cupcakes and a raging work deadline, doesn't look much better. In fact, I'll be working pretty much 24-7 until February 29, which, again, is a fairly grim realization.

I will do the best I can. What else can I do?

And now I'm going to push a little and work another hour tonight, or try to, anyway. HoneyBear is staying for a sleepover, and I can hear him and Martini in the next room, playing video games. (I'm letting them sleep on the pull-out sofa bed, as a special treat.) And if I were to lay odds on which of us will be wide awake and active as the evening wears on . . . I wouldn't pick me.

If tomorrow's a beautiful day like today was, I will get dressed in my zumba clothes, making it more likely that I'll exercise, and I'll ask my husband to push me out the door mid-day. We'll see.


xx Lady C

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Day 179: Sweet Baby Blue Eyes

I had breakfast this morning with my Church Boyfriend, he of the beautiful blue eyes, and I feasted on a maple oatmeal scone with a side of adoration.

I should probably mention that there were three other people with us and that the topic on the agenda was updating our by-laws.


I might also mention that when I got home, I kissed my husband silly. "I know who you're thinking of," he said, but he accepted my guilt kisses.

I gotta stop waiting to blog till the very last thing, I am just too sleeeeepy to think of anything clever! Alas, it has not been a great week for glamorous weight loss or steely discipline. I had another migraine this morning, but I had to hop out of bed to get to church for Lectio Divina and then the white hot meeting . . . and when I got home (after the making out) it was all nose-to-the-grindstone work work work.

And THEN my client had the nerve to say, "I thought you'd be farther along by now." BEE. YATCH.

Except, well, yeah. If I hadn't had two migraines, I would be farther along. But I will catch up this weekend, and I have never freaking missed a deadline for them yet. In, like, 25 years!

OK, it hasn't been 25 years. But I have been working for them for a LONG time.


(Oooh — perhaps my righteous indignation is burning some calories, right this minute!)

For dinner tonight, I made homemade chili and coleslaw and hot dogs, and Mimosa made corn bread, and we had a big bowl of fresh cherries and grapes, and I ate a smallish portion of everything, but still — this is not nature's diet food, I know. But it was goooooood.

OK. I've got to get to bed. I really hope I don't have a headache tomorrow! Or if I do, that it's over soon so I can get some work done. Because, you know, it's all about keeping my clients happy.

< sloooowww burn >

I'm also throwing Li'l Martini's birthday party tomorrow, and what have I done to prepare for it? Exactly nothing.

But I will think about that tomorrow!

Off to the Land of Nod,

Lady C

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Day 178: Ow

My meningitis came back, in the form of a migraine. But as I told someone today, I've felt a migraine in the offing since Saturday, when a dozen black spots danced in front of my eyes for most of the day — it was like a flock of birds suddenly took flight every time I turned my head, which was freaking annoying — so it's almost a relief to finally have the thing and get it over with.

When I have a migraine, the only thing that really works is to take my medication instantly and go back to bed with a cold wet washcloth on my forehead. So my work day didn't start till 11 a.m., I'm way behind, and tonight was a rush-rush-rush to get the kids fed and Martini to his basketball game and me to a PTO meeting.

Though tonight's PTO meeting was quite interesting; we had a roundtable discussion about chores and allowance, and I'm always intrigued by how other parents do things. A lot of parents give their kids an allowance but then make the kids divide it three ways: spending, saving, and donating. This has always struck me as so bizarre: I'm giving you money so you learn how to manage money, but then I'm going to tell you what you have to do with two-thirds of it . . . ? Why don't I just hang on to that two-thirds and deposit it myself? What is the point of making the kid do it? I mean, I don't think it's a bad thing, no one's harming their kids by doing it this way, but it's not for me.

Anyway! Lots of different perspectives shared. One of my friends never makes her bed. One of my friends cleans everything in her house with vinegar. One of my friends bases her kids' allowance on age; they get 50 cents for each year in their age, per week. (I like this!) Good stuff.

I had thought I might work another hour tonight, since I'm so behind, but I'm exhausted. (A side effect of my otherwise excellent meds, I fear.)

I didn't eat a ton today because I didn't feel well, but what I did eat was mostly comfort food — think melted cheese and ice cream. Today will be a black hole on my Diet Calendar. I won't tell if you won't.

—Lady C

p.s. Hmm, this graphic is making me wonder if what I've been calling migraines all these years are really cluster headaches. They definitely gather around one eye. Hmm. When I'm not so sleepy I'll look into it further.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Day 177: Cupid!

Happy Valentine's Day, dear ones!

I love pretty much any "special" day, and this is a particularly nice one. For years, I sent Valentines to everyone I loved, often making them myself. But as I get older, and as I send my Christmas cards closer to Groundhog's Day every year, the work involved in doing such a thing has ever less appeal.

Sorry, kids. I hope you know I love you!

I bought dark chocolate hearts for my daughter and milk chocolate hearts for my son and really yummy gourmet chocolate chip cookies for my truelove, plus one funny card and one mushy card, and he showered me with cards and gave me a beautiful bouquet with lots of different kinds of flowers, reds and pinks and whites, and I love it a lot.

Mostly, though, we all saw little of each other today. I worked all day; Martini had to go to school early for remedial math class ("Dear Parent: Congratulations! Your child is none too bright!"), and though it was an early release day and he got home at 12:20, he brought Shrieki with him, and they locked themselves in the TV room to wrestle to death via Wii; Mimosa had not one, not two, but three different singing rehearsals; Mr. Lady C taught a class and had office hours, and by the time he got home I was off to zumba. So romantic!

Good Neighbor Anne's angel daughter also came home early to find that she was locked out of her house; she wouldn't accept my offer of a comfy couch and a cup of tea, preferring to tough it out on her own chilly porch, but I called out my door to her every 10 minutes or so to make sure she was still alive, and this highly entertained the boys; "How's that frozen girl doing?" Shrieki asked at one point.

Zumba was great; my teacher made me lead the cool-down routine again so she could wander through the room Purell-ing all our hands, and then she gave us homemade chocolate-dipped strawberries, which was so lovely! I am no better at remembering the cool-down routine than I've ever been, and the class laughed at me, but at one point we all grabbed a foot and leaned forward in a stretch, and I cried, "You're all swans! Lovely lovely swans!" and then they laughed with me instead of at me, and that was very fun.

Earlier I had a very stiff neck, which came on rather suddenly, along with what felt like the beginning of an aura migraine, so I Googled "sudden stiff neck and headache" and learned that I have meningitis. Bummer! But I think zumba cured it, so (a) my teacher can add that to her marketing materials, it seems to me, and (b) it was clearly a fast-acting meningitis. A Valentine's Day miracle! But a hot bath wouldn't hurt anything either.

I hope you all got a big yummy kiss today! 

And here's a virtual one from me: X

To the bath!

—Lady C

Monday, February 13, 2012

Day 176: Yawwwwwnnn

I have been so sleepy today, from the moment I woke up (and I got a perfectly good night's sleep last night), and I'm hard-pressed to come up with something to write about. It was a pretty dull day, to be honest; all I really did was work. And yawn.

Which reminds me of a day in college, back when I was faithfully keeping a journal, and I wrote much the same thing: "Such a dull day, all I did was study, but surely something interesting happened. Let me see . . ." And upon musing, I noted, "Well, I took a shower with my friend Mark . . ."


This cracks me up so much. A nothing day . . . was just so very different, once upon a time.

("My friend Mark" was a guy on my hall. I was his RA. There was nothing romantic or sexual between us, he was just a buddy, and I'm pretty sure he was gay. But for some reason we decided to start showering together; I think we did it three or four times. How this idea ever came up in the first place, I could not tell you — and I don't particularly like being naked in front of people, or having people be naked in front of me, so it's even weirder than it already was, which is plenty weird already. Right?)

I did not take a shower with any random men today. Actually, I don't think I showered at all. Really, I have to comb the day for anything that wasn't sitting at my computer working:
  • I met with my PTO co-president and declared my undying love for her son, Mac. (He's four. He has no interest in my undying love. A hard-to-get man . . . sooooo enticing!)
  • I walked to Trader Joe's to buy dry food for my cats, and then climbed my hill carrying two heavy bags of groceries (I can never get just one thing at Trader Joe's). Huff, puff, pant.
  • I didn't allot enough time to make homemade chili for dinner as planned, so we ate at our local Mexican joint and I had yummy fish tacos, and the four of us played a cut-throat game of Kings in the Corner. (Mimosa won. She almost always wins. Girl's a freak.)
  • I watched How I Met Your Mother and Two Broke Girls with Mimosa, who kept sticking her icy feet in my hands, and she told me about a girl who shaved a yin and yang symbol into her pubic hair, and I told her that I cannot even imagine saying the phrase "pubic hair" to my mother, particularly when I was 14, and clearly I am raising her all wrong and she should stop growing up right now. She ignored me and shoved her feet in my hands again, I have failed as a parent, my eldest child is a lippy menace.
Yawwwwnnnnn. I am so sleepy, and the back of my neck aches with tiredness from holding up my giant head all day.

Everyone has been sick at my house for the past two weeks except me, and I think my extreme fatigue is my body's way of protecting itself: "Flee these germy people! Go to bed, you!"

I've been trying to watch Drive at night, but it puts me right to sleep. Well, there's my plan, then.

Sweet dreams!

—Lady C, yawwwwnnnnning

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Day 175 (Week 25): Back to the Fifties!

  • Today's scale reading: 259 !!!!!!!!!
I am one happy pumpkin.

Of course, only in America's Diet Land is this a number to cheer, but nonetheless. I've lost 28 pounds, and I am thrilled as all giddy-up.


My BMI is now a number starting with "30," which also thrills me. For my BMI to be considered healthy, I have to weigh 164 or less. I am now less than a hundred pounds from a healthy weight. This also feels like huge progress.

(My dream weight is 149, because I love the idea of being closer to 100 pounds than 200 pounds. But I haven't weighed anything close to that since my freshman year in high school. If I can reach and maintain 164, I will certainly consider that success!!)

(Plus, as I always tell my Italian Spitfire zumba teacher when she barks at me to go lower when I do squats, I am very tall. I'm really squatting quite deeply, it's just that my head will always be higher than the shrimpy girls', and I will always weigh more than they do, even if I'm perfectly thin.)

(Yeah, she doesn't buy it either.)

Today was lots of fun in other ways too. I played hooky from church (bad girl!) because I had so much to do, but it was unavoidable: finish the laundry; get food and game supplies and Yankee Swap items together for a Betsy-Tacy Valentine party in Worcester; doctor Mimosa (her cold is getting worse) and decide which of her three events — Betsy-Tacy party, yoga, Coming of Age church class — she could and should attend, if any; read another chapter of The Hunger Games to Martini (he's obsessed) and get him organized for the birthday party he's attending tonight; and edit a few pages of Criminal Justice Unit 4: Bad Bad Juvie Youth. Busy busy!

Brunie came and picked me up for the party and we had great fun on the 45-minute ride there and back, and the party was very fun as well. (We missed you, Sister Hart! Where were you?) All I ate today, really, was party food, and yet it was so good I ate several platefuls of it, and I certainly didn't exercise (other than the exertion involved in managing three lives from afar), so who knows what the scale will say. But I don't care. Party food . . . so good.

I just drank the glass of wine that I didn't drink this morning, and it's gone straight to my head, so perhaps I need to eat something more substantial than party food!

Off to find soup. If only the kitchen would hold still . . .

(ha ha)

I'm thrilled to officially enter the '50s at last and I also hope my stay here will be brief.

Determinedly (and slightly drunkenly) yours,

Lady C

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Day 174: Extremely Sad and Incredibly Well-Acted

Another Mommy 'n' Mimosa day, so much fun! First we all did our chores, and I managed not to bark at my filthy piggish family (this is huge for me), and I also wore my zumba clothes as I worked, which reminded me to lift - bend - stretch - lunge — in other words, make it as much of a workout as possible.

Then we split into boy-girl pairs; the boys' tasks were grocery- and birthday-present shopping, whereas the girls had an auction donation to pick up, library books to drop off, and an Oscar movie to see! (Ours was totally more fun.) We had lunch at a new restaurant, Madrona Tree, which focuses on fresh, healthy local food, and I had possibly the best burger I have ever had in my life!! We didn't notice that they didn't come with fries (you had to order those separately) but we'd really wanted to try some of their vegetables, so that's what we had as sides: garlic spinach, and roasted Brussels sprouts with apple. SO YUMMY.

(I'm putting together a basket of Be-Good-to-Your-Body items for our school auction, and Madrona Tree gave me a gift certificate. Also, my Italian Spitfire zumba teacher agreed to donate an eight-class zumba session [and she'll throw in a zumba towel or a T-shirt, "For you," she says, wrinkling her nose at me — she is such a doll] and I'll try to get our local massage place to donate something, and I'll add, like, a loofah and body scrub and a bottle of water and a coupon for four hours of babysitting. How much would you pay? I think it will be very popular.)

The movie was good, I thought — not my favorite of this year's films, and it had some draggy moments, but it also surprised me many times and also made me cry. (Which, duh — it's about 9/11.) And the boy playing Oscar Schell, our main character, is such a find! I think he blew Clooney and Pitt out of the water this year — I'd hand this kid the Oscar, no hesitation.

I chose to use this picture from the movie because Sandra was also very wonderful, I thought. You expect Tom Hanks to be great, and he was, and Viola Davis was her always-remarkable can't-take-your-eyes-off-her self, but Sandra had what I thought was the most difficult part, and she nailed it. The scenes that made me cry hardest both involved her.

Max von Sydow was also lovely, but I stand by my earlier prediction that Christopher Plummer will take the Oscar. Which is a less impressive prediction today than it was three months ago when I was the first one saying it. I just . . . want it noted.

On the way to the theater, Mimosa and I amused ourselves by playing one of our favorite games, Six-Word Summaries (sum up the plot of one of the Oscar nominees in six words). Can you guess?
  • Black and white, dog steals show.
  • Black and white, Octavia steals show.
  • Who gets land? Comatose wife . . . trampy.
  • Brad Pitt is a bipolar dad!
  • Brad Pitt is a baseball coach!
  • Ryan Gosling wants Clooney elected president.
  • Unbreakable friendship between boy and equine.
  • England triumphant, Falklands, but ultimately dementia.
Try it, 's fun!

Except for the enormous burger of deliciousness, I've eaten lightly today (and won't have any more food tonight) and am so so so hopeful for tomorrow's weigh-in. After which, I will break open the bottle of wine I've been hoarding all week and guzzle a HUGE glass.

Yes, at seven in the morning, right after I weigh myself.

Issues? Moi?

(Keep your fingers crossed for me!)
—Lady C, ready to imbibe

Friday, February 10, 2012

Day 173: Accomplishment!

I just finished proofing The Cheerleader, and it's been so much fun; I've been e-mailing Ruth Doan MacDougall (my favorite living author) and Wilde Woman, her graphic designer and webmistress and my buddy, every day with questions like "Do you want to hyphenate 'dining-room table'?" which is the type of conversation we all get giddy over. Ruth told me that "V-neck" is a noun and "V-necked" is an adjective, and I nearly swooned!

Yes, I am in the right profession.

And I'm also thrilled because I found an error; Tom pulls into the driveway behind Mike, and Roger pulls in behind Tom, and then Mike leaves — which is clearly impossible, given how skinny New England driveways are. So I got to see Ruth in action, rewriting a small section of one page. It gave me goosebumps!

For those who have somehow managed to resist the charms of The Cheerleader, my most favorite book in the entire world, it is the story of Henrietta "Snowy" Snow's sophomore, junior, and senior years of high school in the 1950s. As the title suggests, she is a cheerleader. She's also an honor student, driven to succeed, and she's in love (from afar, as the book opens) with dreamboat Tom Forbes. I can't even really explain why I love and adore this book so much, but I love every single page of it. I heart Snowy, I know Snowy, I am Snowy.

(Except, really not. But when I read it I feel like I am.)

The picture above is the real-life Snowy, Ruth herself, with husband Don. They are the dearest couple. Visiting them is always a treat. The last time I drove up there (they live in the wilds of New Hampshire), I brought my mom, who also loves the book, and Ruth let me read all her old yearbooks. SO fun!!

Anyway, that was a wonderful thing to check off my list today.

I also took a long walk, trying to keep up the pace of a person hurrying to catch a bus, which is what my primary doc says I need to do in order for walking to have any real health benefits. And tonight, after dinner, I plan to lift weights, work my core, and stretch, before collapsing into a hot bath.

Totally unrelated, do any of you ever look at my counting system (Day #, Week #) and say to yourself, That girl's on crack? I mess it up all the time. Whatever number I said last week was, is wrong. This Sunday will be Week 25, and I devoutly hope to have lost 25+ pounds so I can continue my rate of losing 1+ pounds per week. So far, so good, but I don't want to tempt fate.

(We just had dinner: cheddar cheese soup, homemade soft pretzels, braised mushrooms, roasted cauliflower, and JELL-O with strawberries and grapes. So good! And the pretzels — which I made for the first time — were awesome and adorable! I love cute food.)

I've been writing this post on and off for the past two hours, so I'll sign off now and get on to the next thing.

TGIF, man!

—Lady C

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Day 171: Ice Cream for Dinner!

Today the Chardonnays celebrated, big time: Li'l Martini got his braces off!!

That poor kid. His mouth is so very tweaked. This is only Round 1 of braces. Next, he'll wear a retainer for a while, and then go through the braces thing all over again. And he's already survived the palate expander, a truly horrifying Mengele-esque experience. But he's being a real trouper, and I am also the funnest Mom evah, so I promised an all-ice-cream meal for this auspicious day. And boy howdy, did he take me up on it: a three-scoop sundae for dinner, plus a Fribble, plus a Cotton Candy soda. Ah, to be young. And not diabetic.

The rest of us at more traditionally, though I confess to enjoying a Happy Ending sundae. Which doesn't mean anything pervy, people, get your minds out of the gutter.

I "earned" my sundae by walking two miles, at a brisk pace, to pick up my car at the end of the day. It was a lovely walk, and all my leg muscles were humming. And my car passed its inspection, with new license plates affixed fore and aft, and this Rules Girl is happy again.

But I need to go watch Ringer now with my sweet girl and then read another chapter of The Hunger Games to my sweet toothy boy (he is devastatingly handsome without his braces, and his smile is blinding — the young ladies of Dallin School don't stand a chance), so, short post tonight.

Was my brisk walk enough to work off a two-scoop sundae with hot fudge and walnuts? Probably not. But I'll worry about that tomorrow.

Ever embracing denial,
Lady C

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Day 170: College Girl

My aforementioned California besty has a bunch of pictures from our college life on her blog today; if you want to see what I looked like back then, check 'em out! 

Even though I was much thinner then, I think I'm actually prettier now. (See above.) It helps that I no longer ring my eyes with black eyeliner, I suppose, and that I wear supportive undergarments (or any undergarments) and get regular haircuts at an actual salon.

Oh, crap, am I right back to my fear of looking haggard and awful once I lose my fat face?!!

Well, no danger of that happening any time soon.

Though it was funny — Lady Darcy and I were talking last night, and I said, "I have this crater on my chin, it's like an enormous dent, but it wasn't preceded by anything — just, one day, I suddenly had a dent." And she shrieked, "That happened to me too!!!! . . . do you think it's because we're losing weight?" And we HOWLED.

Yes, fat is slooooowwwwly disappearing from our faces — in little pockets. Yay?

I have little news to report, so instead (somewhat inspired by looking at pictures of old, old friends) I thought I'd do a quick round-up of the dear friends I invited to read my blog and help keep me on track:
  • College friends: Lady Darcy, J, Zanzibar
  • First-adult-job friend: Mrs. Fog Dog
  • Planned Parenthood friends: Maybelline Queen (who reminds me that she was there when I first met and fell in love with Mr. Lady C — so true! She was my first besty he met) and Bride Boy
  • Betsy-Tacy friends: Inspirational Kathy, Brunie, the Sisters Hart, Darsaleia, Blogger Dawn, and KC
  • Neighborhood friend: Good Neighbor Anne
  • Work friend: Mrs. Cynicletary
  • Kids' school friend: Nurse Kathy
  • Church friends: Kind Tina and Sexy Em
It makes me feel all happy and glowy to see your names in a list like that. Love my friends!!

Some of you asked if you can share my blog with others, and it's absolutely fine — I was more shy at first, but now that it's part of my routine, feel free to go wild, particularly if you think anything I say here might help someone else.

This week, I am really really really trying to walk the straight and narrow weight-loss path, which for me means (1) eating small,  healthy meals with lots of fresh produce, (2) letting myself stay just a little bit hungry, rather than rushing to get a snack, (3) getting some exercise every day, even if it's just a short walk, and (4) getting at least seven hours of sleep. Eight would be better, but this is one of my biggest challenges, most likely due to the vats of coffee I consume all day long, including right before bed. But the scale has been my very good friend so far this week, so, we'll see. I am really really really ready to hit my next milestone (thwack!), and this steely determination is helping me stay motivated and focused.

Time for dinner (it's been a crazy day of rushing about, the kids and Husband are in nine different places right now — so, dinner by myself at 7:21 p.m., whatev). I'm going to have a big yummy salad and a cup of Trader's Joe's Roasted Red Pepper and Tomato Soup, and it will be very delicious and satisfying. And if I feel a need for dessert, I'm going to toast a piece of the nice bread I bought today and put some jam on it, no butter, and have that with my evening coffee. All good.

Bon appetit!

—Lady C

p.s. When I have that slightly hungry hollow feeling, I love imagining that my body is feeding itself on my fat cells.

Which is probably just making more dents someplace. Sigh.

p.p.s. This morning I put on my jeans but was still nekkid up top, and I held my boobs in my hands and showed Husband how my stomach actually moves now, significantly, when I hold it in, and I kept saying, "Look! Look!" in great excitement as I modeled it for him — taut, slack, taut, slack — and then returned to getting dressed, and he said, "I gotta be honest . . . I wasn't looking at your stomach at all." I said, "They were in my hands, you couldn't even see anything," and he said, "It just didn't matter."

We're getting along just fine, in other words.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Day 169: Small Steps

A huge shout-out to my besty in California, Lady Darcy, who has lost an entire inch from her waist, woo-hoo!! My friend is not an exercise girl, but she's been making an effort to take a little walk every day, just a short one around her block, about three-quarters of a mile, which takes her 15 minutes.

And I read this on her blog and simultaneously thought, "Good for her!" and "That is such a short walk, I don't think it would do me any good at all."

Well, guess what? Lady Darcy walked three-quarters of a mile yesterday. I walked zero quarters of a mile yesterday. She got exercise and I didn't.

I don't always have the time (or, let's face it, the inclination) for the workout of my dreams, but I always have time for a short walk around my block. And I am far more likely to turn a short walk around my block into a slightly longer walk, or into a short walk that concludes with weight-lifting or core work, than I am to turn sitting-in-my-work-chair into anything that looks like exercise.

So that is my new vow: If nothing else, I will take a short walk every day.

Today the roofers were here, and it sounded like freaking Beirut inside my house, but now I have a gorgeous new roof. And a Dumpster in my driveway, but that is not permanent. The new roof has a lifetime guarantee. Wow, joke will be on us if we die young, I guess.

I also helped sell stuff at the middle school book fair, which was totally fun, and I bought three books, including Toys Go Out, which all my Betsy-Tacy friends rave about. Because I need more stuff to read, as do we all.

(My dear friend Bride Boy just read my entire blog in one fell swoop and e-mailed me, "By the way, how is it that you seem to be reading a new book every single day?!! AND you watch multiple movies in one evening?? I don’t get it. Are you living in some sort of weird extended time paradigm?" It's just good time management, my friend. Also, I read fast and remember nothing. So fun!!)

Zumba tonight! I plan to push hard and sweat hard; my weight was quite lovely this morning, and I want to encourage this trend.

(I haven't taken my own measurements, but I can report that I've lost a ton of back fat! I used to be able to grab a whole handful right above my butt, and there's almost nothing there now.)

Sally forth!

—Lady C

Monday, February 6, 2012

Day 168: My Newfound Resolution

As predicted, couples therapy was a glorious walk in the sunshine, but we got through it. We are fundamentally respectful to each other, even when we're furious, and that is a huge help in a marriage, I must say. And I finally finally finally heard something my poor darling has been saying to me for years:

He cannot bear it when I raise my voice.

I can think all kinds of thoughts about that, and I can even disagree as to whether it's better to raise children with no ability to handle a situation where people are raising their voices (as Husband's parents raised him, my precious little lily), and I may be 100 percent right, and I may even qualify to wear the Medal of Rightness every blessed day of my life, and the bottom line is that none of that matters.

For better or worse, my husband is the most important person in my world. And the most important person in my world is asking me to do something, for his own mental health and peace of mind.

It is going to be very extremely hard for me, but I am going to try my darndest. What else can I do?

I had little work today but a TON of life stuff to do, so I am going to sign off now and get back to all that. It will feel wonderful to make a significant dent in my ongoing mountain of to-do-ness.

Will I exercise today? I might walk down the hill and get a tax form I need at Walgreen's. We'll see how the afternoon goes.

Tonight, Li'l Martini and I are finally cooking our long-delayed co-dinner: burger patties, garlic mashed potatoes, and carrot-raisin salad (Martini's favey-fave way to eat his veggies). Yum!

I am determined to push push push hard this week and hit the 50s by Sunday's weigh-in. I've said this before, I know — but I've got two months to get thinner and fitter before I squeeze myself into a slinky gown for our church auction, and I want to make the most of it.

Well, heck, I probably should exercise then, right?

Grr. I hate common sense.

Grumpily yours,
Lady C

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Days 166 and 167 (Week 29): What Did You Have for Dinner? I Had RAGE

Sorry to miss a day of blogging, but I was too angry and exhausted.

It is very rare that my husband completely loses his temper with me; he is more likely to seethe silently (sometimes for years) before telling me (a) that he's mad and (b) what he's mad about. But yesterday he completely blew up at me, over something very small (in my opinion, anyway), and he did it in front of our son, which our son naturally found rather scary. I told Husband to stop, that he was acting terrible, but he continued to bark and spew. It was awful.

We were walking home from a family trip to Walgreen's and Trader Joe's. When we got home I put away the groceries and cooked dinner and made an additional meal for a church family who just suffered a loss (I'd agreed to do that earlier in the week) and continued moving three loads of laundry through the system — in other words, stayed on my feet multi-tasking for two more hours, while seething with anger and annoyance over this unwarranted attack, and also worrying about how my son was doing. And Husband? Husband took a nap. Which further fueled my rage.

But hey, I lost two and a half pounds!
  • Today's scale reading: 262.5

(To be clear, those are ironic italics.)

Today I have a migraine (likely culprits: hormones and stress). After church, I said to Husband, "I know you want to talk about it in therapy tomorrow, but is there anything you want to say right now about yesterday?" and he said, "Well, I do want to talk about it tomorrow, but I know I overreacted and I'm sorry about that," and I said, "Did you say anything to our son?" and he said, ". . . our son?"


(I said something to our son, I hasten to add. Within an hour of the event. Our son is fine, but he did need some reassurance.)

Couples therapy tomorrow should be one heck of a good time. Can't wait!!

In other news, I saw two Oscar movies this weekend:
  • War Horse: LOVED. So sweet and sad and moving, and the cinematography and score are stunning.
  • Moneyball: Loved! I thoroughly enjoy math and statistics, and I like movies about baseball. And Jonah Hill was a delight! Well-deserved nomination.
My headache is better, but I'm exhausted from my migraine meds, so — that's all I'm going to write.

Oh, and thank you for the license plate suggestions! Apparently my subconscious had already christened it HOT ZONE 1, though Mr. Lady Darcy (aka CPA Boy) has now completely perverted that, and despite all efforts to think HOT ZONE, I may well think HO ZONE instead. Thank you, CPA family of California. You're the best. 

xox Lady C

Friday, February 3, 2012

Day 166: Love My Girl!!

Today was a really great day.

I got up at my usual time and did a couple of quick things for work, my last work commitment of the week, and then I did my timesheet: SEVENTY-ONE hours!!! Again, it's too much work . . . but that is going to be an amazing paycheck. So, that was kinda cool.

And then I went off to the Registry to turn in my crappy old wrong-color license plate and get two new (ugh) red ones. (Red is my least favorite color, but what can you do.) And it looked like it was going to be a piece of cake, since a sign clearly said License Plate Return: Go to Self-Serve Kiosk, so, yay, skip the mile-long line, lucky me! I typed in all my info, got a receipt, and dropped my crappy plate into the designated slot. And then . . . I wondered how I was going to get the new plates, as there was clearly no license plate robo-butler heading over holding my new plates in its helpful claw.

So . . . I trudged my way to the end of the mile-long line. It was okay, though; just ahead of me was a mom I like from school (my son is secretly, deeply, in love with her daughter), and we had a fun time chatting, and also I had a magazine, and the line moved quickly enough, and in a matter of minutes I was explaining my situation to the woman behind the counter.

An angry dwarf woman, who barked at me, "You returned your plate? When you wanted to exchange it? What were you thinking?" She clearly wanted to stamp MORON on my forehead, possibly with her own hooves. And here's me all, ". . . whuh? The sign said!"

But I was very clear on who had the power in this situation, and it wasn't the girl with no license plate, so I meekly took the number she gave me and went to wait my turn with the other morons. (Seriously. The lady behind me was deeply confused by her own phone, and the person next to me said the words, "I saw it on the Facebooklet.")

(Yeah, but I bet they all had license plates.)

In any event, I am now the proud owner of two shiny plates, the redness of which does not bother me in the least, because they are so clean and new and pretty! And almost all even numbers, which I love. I am now "846 HZ1." Come up with some cool acronym for HZ1, and I'll love you forever. (My last plate was NBJ, and my acronym was filthy. I'll never tell.)

And then I came home to start my day of leisure and pampering, but I was determined to "earn" it first by working up a good sweat. Except . . . I really really really didn't want to walk on my treadmill. And though the sun was shining and it was a gorgeous bright-blue day, it was still a little too cold to walk outside. But then I thought of a great compromise: I did three fast zumba routines to the songs I've downloaded ("I Like How It Feels," "La Vida Loca," and "Show Me How You Burlesque"), then I lifted my 5-pound weights (70 bicep curls, 30 tricep lifts) and did three different kinds of leg lifts, then I held on to the pillar in our basement and worked my core, then I attempted to do push-ups on my basement stairs (ouch), and finally I stretched, which felt awesome; my calves have been so tight from sitting for 71 hours for the past two weeks! And this felt like a great workout; I was definitely sweaty, and every muscle was singing.

And then I took a bath! At noon! It was soooooo luxurious. And then Mimosa and I watched Crazy, Stupid, Love while I painted my fingernails and toenails and gave myself a lovely pedicure and got all the dry cracked skin off my heels. My feet are now sweet and pink and baby-soft, my toenails are plum, and my fingernails are fawn. I haven't been well-groomed in weeks, so this was a truly lovely and long overdue treat.

My darling daughter and I just had Thai food for dinner, and I introduced her to fresh rolls, which she loved, and then we came home and watched our favorite trashy TV show, Ringer, which is finally back after a month's hiatus, and we are so happy!! And when I'm done here, I plan to curl in my comfy chair with a hot creamy cup of coffee and catch up on my backlog of magazines and G, the section of the Boston Globe comprising everything I actually like to read in the newspaper (movie, TV, and book reviews, recipes, advice for the lovelorn, and comics).

A pretty darn perfect day, I must say! And I anticipate a lovely weekend ahead as well. I wish the same for you.

To all, a good night!

—Lady C

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Day 165: Good Neighbors

Tonight's post is dedicated to Good Neighbor Anne, whose birthday is today! Cute little groundhog girl.

We had a very jolly time, toasting her at the restaurant I've been calling Asian Fusion Hooty-Doody, because I can't remember its actual name. But I had several nice glasses of wine and some scrumptious sushi, and it was very fun to be with my friend and celebrate her life, in a circle of awesome women and her cutie-pie beau. Love my friend!

We met when I moved to Arlington, into the house diagonally across the street from hers, and I spent many a morning/afternoon/early evening walking my one-year-old daughter up and down the street, up and down the street. (My friend the Maybelline Queen commented that I've never been so tan in my life. Which is true.) And during one of these slow, slow jaunts, I met Good Neighbor Anne doing much the same thing with her one-year-old girl. And I fell madly in love with both of them right away, and we've all been dear friends ever since.

Yes, that is a very truncated version of the story, but it's late, and I just got home from a meeting (went straight from birthday dinner to a meeting — I brought coffee to sober myself up, but I still feel a tad . . . giddy), and I need to get to bed!

(Yes, I am still watching Warrior.)

(Or I guess I should say: trying to watch Warrior. Man, that flick is a snooze-inducer!)

I have high hopes for tomorrow. I have to go to the Registry (that's the New England DMV, Cali friends) to get new license plates (did I mention that I flunked my car inspection on two counts? This is Count 1: wrong-color license plates. Don't ask) and I have a few more references to look up and format for my Criminal Justice client, but after that . . . I think I'm free! My goals are to take a mid-day bath (such a luxury!!) and then to paint my nails and watch Crazy Stupid Love with Mimosa, and then go to dinner somewhere girly (Li'l Martini and Mr. Lady C have basketball and then a boy dinner). I hope I hope I hope. I really need an afternoon of leisure!!

But now, to bed.

xx Lady C, working girl

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Day 164: Please Sir, May I Have Another?

Another one of those all-work-and-no-play days, that is.

Except today did have an amusing moment.

But mostly it was more of the same: Sit at my computer from dawn till dusk, desperately trying to finish this multi-piece proposal, which is up there in the Top 10 of all-time boring proposals.

OK, possibly that's not true. It's about kids doing science labs, and in one lab they're manipulating raw E. coli. So, grotesque and horrifying, for sure, but possibly not boring.


Every day this week I've worked eight straight hours (and that's eight hours of solid work — I'm not paid to take a lunch hour or gossip with a colleague), and, again, the money will be great, but I do not want to work this much. But this is the nature of freelancing —it's feast or famine.  And right now I'm in the midst of a bounteous feast —  too bounteous, in fact, I'm full to bursting — but the famine is right around the corner, and I'm looking it square in the eye.

What can you do.

I knocked off work at 6, because tonight I hosted a meeting for a subcommittee of our Auction Committee: my co-auctioneer, Handsome White Male; my besty Sexy Em, who plays our merchandise teaser "Vanna Black"; and Pammy-Lin, the chair of the committee and one of my church drinkin' buds. Our task: to come up with three jazzy and theatrical announcements re: the upcoming auction. Our theme is "Rhapsody in Blue," and the sub-theme is "From Ball Gowns to Blue Jeans." I pitched an idea for one of the announcements that has me in a beautiful blue ball gown (one of Mrs. Cynicletary's former bridesmaid dresses), waxing rhapsodic about how the auction is a chance to dress up and get all glammy, and to every exuberant thing I say, Handsome White Man utters, flatly, "I'm wearing jeans." Everyone loved it, so that will be our first announcement.

It was a fun meeting, and we drank a LOT of wine, also beer, also Prosecco. It was just that kind of meeting.

Today was not remotely a good weight-loss day. I looked sadly at the blue sky, and listened sadly to the reports of my children, who declared "it feels like summer outside today!" I wanted to take a walk, but there just wasn't time. And I think my first two meals were reasonable (though honestly I can't remember what I had for lunch), but for dinner I had drinkin' snacks: cheese, olives, bread and butter, nuts. Though I also had some fresh veggies and strawberries. Still. Not a Weight Watchers approved meal, I'm fairly sure, even before the multiple glasses of Chardonnay and Prosecco.

Part of the problem was that I slept in today, I was just so exhausted (and having a very sexy dream about the guy who came to spray my house for mosquitos) (No, we don't have mosquitos. There is no such guy. But it was a very sexy dream. He was a cross between Mac Davis and Grant Snow. A sexy cross), so I didn't start working until 9:30, instead of 7:30, as I usually do. And there are just so many pieces to this proposal! But I think I'm done with it tomorrow. And then Friday I'll start another Criminal Justice unit, probably.

But I will not work this weekend! I'm determined to take my family to see Beauty and the Beast in 3-D, my favorite Disney movie, and then on Sunday, when the rest of the world is watching sweaty men in tight pants and shoulder pads toss a pigskin about, which is not gay in the least, Mimosa and I will go see War Horse. Last year, on "this" Sunday, we saw The Blind Side and then went to the restaurant next door to grab a bite, not realizing that (a) it was a sports bar and (b) it was "the" sports Sunday, and people laughed at us as we went, "Ohhhhhhhh" after watching the TV for a couple of minutes. The commercials were fun, though.

I guess I should be rooting for "my" team, but I could not care less about the Patriots. Sorry. When the Red Sox are playing well, my whole city has a happy mellow vibe, and I can totally groove on that. But the Pats? Whatev. Not my thing.

Oscar news: I'm trying to watch Warrior in bed at night, but it puts me right to sleep. I've got Moneyball in my hands, right this very minute, and I really want to see that, so I may just give up on Warrior. But I'll try to finish it tonight.

I'm still trying to decide whether to host an Oscar party this year. The party I have in my head is always so much more fun than the one that actually happens, and as I cleaned up from last year's party, I swore it would be my last. But Mimosa really really wants to invite a friend who would be a super-cool addition, so . . . I dunno. Still deciding.

OK! I'm going to make myself a cup of tea (I drank all the coffee), try to watch some Warrior, and probably fall right to sleep. Tomorrow . . . oh, lots on my plate. But I'll worry about it then.


—Lady C