A Capella Geek


It’s no secret that I love music. It’s also no secret that I have a special place in my heart for a capella music. Not only do I sing in a women’s 4 part a capella barbershop chorus (and quartet), but I absolutely love listening to a capella music. I’m not talking Glee. I actually can’t stand Glee. It’s over-processed and auto-tuned singing and I am just not a big fan.

Music is a huge part of my life, and a huge part of my soul. I wanted to share some of my current favorite a capella obsessions!

 

 

Effington – Ben Folds

Rosanna – Exit 245
{Quality’s not great on this one. Check it out on iTunes to get the full effect.}

Fix You – Exit 245

A Nightingale Sang in Berkley Square – Manhattan Transfer

Everything the Manhattan Transfer does is absolutely amazing. I’ve been listening to them since I was a kid, and I’ve recently started downloading their music on iTunes and to my delight, Nellie enjoys the upbeat songs they sing a lot!

There is something magical and powerful about people making music with nothing but their voices. I am so happy to be a part of an organization that lets me make beautiful harmony with other women with just my voice.. No piano, no drum, no external instrument of any kind. It’s an amazing feeling.

I hope that you enjoyed the songs I shared! I hate that the YouTube videos are so large, but I couldn’t think of any other way to post these songs!

What is your favorite type of music? Are you an a capella geek like me?

Things that Got My Goat This Week

I haven’t done a Goat-Getting post in a while. If you don’t know what all of this goat business is about, my friend Crunchy VT Mommy has a weekly (mostly weekly) thing where she bitches about shit that pissed her off. It’s fabulous and I love it even though I haven’t done it in a while. Here is what got my effing goat this week.

  1. The Stomach Flu: Technically, it got my goat (and my intestines) last week but whatever. The stomach flu can just go jump off an effing bridge. There is NO reason or call for it. NONE. WHATSOEVER. It exists purely to make humans miserable by causing them to simultaneously vomit and shit their brains out. Oh, and what’s worse is that it’s not technically a flu. It’s really more like an angry, vengeful tiger that goes into a bezerker rage and tears your bowels apart. Fuck you, Stomach Tiger.
  2. Ruby Tuesday: Mmmm. Salad bar. Delicious. I love Ruby Tuesday. Their succulent brown croutons (idk what they’re made of. I just know that they’re brown.) are to die for. Their new cheesy biscuits area little ridiculous because they’re approximately the size of a walnut, but whatever. You know what I don’t love? Restaurants that don’t have one of these:  In the bathroom. You know what restaurant doesn’t have one of those in the bathroom?
    RUBY FUCKING TUESDAY. I took Nellie in there the other day to check on her diaper and after spinning in a circle a few times looking for one I discovered THEY DON’T HAVE A CHANGING TABLE. This is not an old, outdated restaurant. This particular Ruby Tuesday was built about three years ago. WHAT THE HELL. JOIN THE 21ST CENTURY, RUBY TUESDAY. I need a place to change my kid’s ass. You know where I’m going to change it? On the nice, plush chair you have sitting in the corner. Have fun sitting where my kid’s bare ass was, other patrons!
  3. Old Navy: Old Navy, you have cute clothes. I love them. When I was skinny I used to shop at your store all the time. But Old Navy,  I’m not skinny anymore. I’m fat now. I wear a size 20. And you offer cute plus-sized clothes, that’s awesome! Oh, but wait. Do you know what’s not awesome? THE FACT THAT YOUR STORES DON’T CARRY THE CUTE PLUS-SIZED CLOTHES. Maybe some do, but none around here do. Do YOU know what it’s like trying to figure out if a certain shirt is going to look right on your lumpy, oddly-shaped mommy frame without trying it on first? No, you don’t Old Navy because you’re not a person. You’re a store. THAT’S NO EXCUSE. GET PLUS SIZED CLOTHES IN YOUR STORE SO I CAN SQUEEZE MY ASS INTO THEM BEFORE I BUY.
  4. Cherry Coke Zero: YOU SON OF A – oh wait. Cherry Coke Zero doesn’t get my goat at all. Cherry Coke Zero is actually delightful and full of win. Remember that whole “I’m not drinking soda anymore” thing I posted about a few weeks ago (just smile and nod)? Yeah, about that. Cherry Coke Zero, I wish I could quit you.

And that, friends, is what Got my Goat This Week. Now write what got YOUR goat, head on over to Crunchy VT Mommy and link up. NOW!

The Battle of the Queue

My husband and I love movies. We are what you would call movie buffs. We will give pretty much any movie a chance. Our likes range from Oscar-winning dramas to musicals (okay, that’s me and not my husband) to campy movies like Pirhana (which was AWESOMMMEEE). There are movies that we disagree on, of course. Joshua doesn’t like musicals and I don’t like comic book cartoons, cheesy 80s guys movies (Road Warrior = worst ever) or Alexander, which happens to be one of Josh’s favorite movies. Oliver Stone can just get the eff off my Netflix queue and movie shelf FOREVER.

Since early 2006, we have been Netflix users. We. Love. Netflix. We love it even more since it introduced its’ “Instant” feature, allowing us to stream movies and TV shows to our laptop. We’ve caught up on entire TV shows this way – Weeds, Californication, Man Vs. Food… I love love love Netflix. However, there is one problem that comes with being romantically involved with someone and having Netflix…

And that’s the Battle of the Queue.

More than likely if you have a partner and Netflix at the same time, you already know what I’m talking about. It’s the constant power struggle that comes with arranging your queue and adding new movies to it. It’s a game of stealth, of sneakiness and of subtlety. It starts with something like this….

Me: Ooooh, you know what movie I haven’t seen in a while and that I don’t think you’ve ever seen?
Josh: What?
Me: A Hard Day’s Night.
Josh: *blank stare*
Me: What? It’s great! It’s funny, it’s cute and it’s THE BEATLES.
Josh: *blank stare* It’s a musical, isn’t it.
Me: No… Well… Not really.. It’s.. JUST WATCH IT. *puts it at the top of the queue*
Josh: THE TOP?!
Me: *death stare*

End of struggle, right?

WRONG.

Everything is well and good until I skip to the mailbox and rip into my red Netflix envelope, giddy with anticipation in seeing my beloved Beatles movie for the first time in years…… Only to find the DVD enclosed in the sleeve is…

Me: SUPERMAN VS. SHAZAM? WHAT THE ACTUAL FUCK IS THIS?
Josh: *runs garbage disposal* WHAT??? I CAN’T HEAR YOU.
Me: DID YOU PUT THIS AT THE TOP OF OUR QUEUE????
Josh: Hmmm, did I? I don’t remember.
Me: RAGGEEEEE

You would think I could easily solve this problem by putting Hard Day’s Night BACK up at the top of the queue, but because I am a spaz and my brain is like a sieve I forget. With paying bills, working, Nellie, chorus and a thousand other things my Netflix queue is just not usually at the front of my brain. So I forget, until weeks have passed and my Beatles movie still hasn’t shown up in my mailbox. I go to the queue to find that it’s now at position 67 or some equally far-away number. And that’s when I initiate my own Battle Sequence. Mine is sneaky. Mine is tricky.
Mine is brilliant.

You see, I generally put the envelopes back into the mail at work (we get 3 at a time). This is when I execute my perfectly-timed plan.

Me: *walking out the door* I’m putting the Netflix movies back in the mail today.
Josh: You’re awesome!
Me: Yessss… awesome…..

I will get to work, drop the movies in the mail and wait a few hours. This gives Josh some time to manipulate the queue as he pleases while he is still thinking about it (because just like me, he also has a thousand things bouncing around in his brain). After he has snuck a few of my movies down and a few of his up, that is when I strike.

Me: HARD DAY’S NIGHT! STRICTLY BALLROOM! TOMMY! Muuuuaaaah hah aha! MINE IS AN EVIL LAUGH.

I sneak those three to the top toward the end of the day when Josh has forgotten about the queue and the Netflix movies we turned in have already reached their destination. The day the three new red envelopes come in..

Me: We have Netflix!
Josh: What did we get?
Me: A Hard Day’s Night..
Josh: *side-eye*
Me: Strictly Ballroom…
Josh: *stink-eye*
Me: And Tommy!
Josh: YOU MESSED WITH THE QUEUE DIDN’T YOU??!!
Me: I WIN AT NETFLIX!

I will happily watch my three awesome movies while Josh feigns interest and then I’ll pack them back up, send them out…

And the Battle of the Queue rages on.

Plague Free Playtime {Photo Post}

The Plague has finally left our household. To celebrate, we had a fun-filled day of (slightly less energetic than usual) play, ending with some time at the park. I had some fun editing our photos with Picnik; I am by no means a photographer but I did have fun playing with the effects! Enjoy the pics.

Having fun & feelin' fine!

A sweet hug

Mischief Incarnate

The Only Girl in the World {to us}

Snacktime {mmmmm. grass}

Whee!

We all agree, it sure is nice to be feeling well again.

Plague

I mentioned the other day about our eventful and stinky trip to Olive Garden.

Unfortunately for my family, that was just the first incident of diarrhea that we were about to deal with. Thursday night, my husband and I were hit with the stomach plague from hell.

Without going into too much gory detail, Josh and I both got sick Thursday night with him getting the brunt of the sickness. Because Fate loves us, Nellie slept through without making a peep while Josh and I were busy running to and from the bathroom (we have two, thankfully) puking our guts out and sounding like angry dragons. I had eaten a few Doritos for dinner and I’m not real sure I’m going to ever be able to eat one again.

We woke up yesterday feeling puny as hell and begged Josh’s mother to come get Nellie and keep her for the day. Because she rocks, she obliged and we promptly crawled to bed and passed out. Midday, Josh was clammy and felt like death so we went to the Physician’s Care where he was diagnosed with severe dehydration and a stomach bacterial infection. EXCELLENT. He was given some Phrenegran and we were sent about our way. We put Nellie down for an early bedtime around 6:30… During the night Nellie woke up once – she had vomited all over herself & her crib. Let me tell you, bananas sure aren’t appetizing after they’ve come back up. Especially when your groggy toddler is covered in them at midnight. We cleaned her up quickly and put her back to sleep. She didn’t wake up until 10 AM. I had to creep in there at one point and check to make sure she was okay. She stayed awake for an hour before getting insanely cranky so we put her back down.. And she took a 2 and a half hour nap. She was up again for an hour before Lady CrankyPants showed back up. Back down she went. She’s been sleeping for an hour and a half.

I’m feeling okay – very weak from lack of eating but my stomach no longer feels like there is an angry ferret running about and chewing my stomach lining so.. Thumbs up to that!

I think that if it’s still relatively warm out when Nellie wakes up we’re going to try and get out and get some fresh air. We need it!

When You’re Here, You’re Family. Unless You Crap Your Pants. {Mommy’s Side}

Today’s blog post is a harrowing tale involving my first parental experience with public diarrhea. Took me 13 months to go through this parenting rite of passage but I’ve officially been christened.
This story is being told from two different perspectives: one from my side, and one from my husband’s side. Look at the bottom of this post for the link to Daddy Green’s story.

****************

After a quick trip to the pediatrician’s office due to some vomiting, it was determined that Nellie might have a slight stomach bug.  We brought her home for a nap and I decided to stay home from work to be with my family. When she woke up, she was acting fine & hadn’t thrown up in hours so we decided to go see about a used car. After driving 30 minutes we discovered that the car was a POS so we left. We decided to stop at Jason’s Deli for lunch.

As we pulled into the parking lot and pulled the kiddo out of her seat, I turned to Daddy Green and asked quizzically, “Is our car supposed to be hissing?”
A quick inspection of the car warranted curse words from both of us: there was a screw lodged in the rear driver’s side tire and it was losing air. Hence the hissing. We debated briefly upon what to do before driving to a tire place and telling them our dilemma. The man there told us it’d be about an hour and a half; just enough time for us to sit down to a leisurely lunch.

Little did I know that it was going to be the Lunch from Hell.

We walked across the street to Olive Garden; laden with diaper bag, purse, jacket, and squirmy toddler. The pediatrician had advised to keep Nellie on PediaLyte and bland foods all day so after getting seated, we pulled out the sippy cup and the saltine crackers. Nellie sat happily, sweeping her crackers to the floor and clapping with glee. A short while into lunch Daddy Green sniffed the air and gave me a knowing look. I leaned over and peeked down Nellie’s diaper to see that Daddy’s nose was right. I scooped her up and carried her off to the restroom where I discovered that her stool was a little loose, but I wasn’t alarmed. I got the deed done and carried her back to the table, where we finished the rest of our lunch in peace and harmony.

Dear reader.. How I wish I could write those last words and have them be true…. but I would be lying to you if I told you that. For those of you who are weak-stomached, squeamish, or can’t handle tales of baby shit.. Turn back now. Leave this post with visions of a happy family enjoying their soup and salad in peace, smiling and laughing as their daughter charmed the waitstaff.

For those of you brave enough, our story continues.

I was digging into my soup and salad when I heard Daddy Green sniff again. He looked at me pointedly and lowered his voice,
“I think someone needs another trip to the bathroom.”
“You think so?” I ask, my eyebrows raised in surprise. “Let me look.”
“You don’t need to look. I can smell it.”
I leaned toward Nellie and took a sniff and knew immediately that my husband was right. I stood up and reached down to grab my daughter…

And quickly pulled my hands back as if a snake had bit me.
My hands were wet with baby shit.
“SHE’S COVERED,” I hissed at Daddy Green who was blissfully unaware of the situation.
“Hmm?” he asked from behind his pasta.
“Lift her up BUT BE CAREFUL. IT’S ON HER SHIRT.”
Daddy Green wrinkled his nose and gingerly lifted his baby girl from the seat. I picked her up under the armpits and held her out before me as if she were a nuclear weapon that I was trying not to detonate.

Once I got to the bathroom and was able to properly assess the situation, I almost shit my own pants. I stood Nellie up on the changing table and looked her up and down. The bottom of her shirt was covered in diarrhea and her pants? Literally dripping. Dripping with yellow, watery shit. Socks, covered. Shoes were miraculously unscathed but she pretty much looked like someone had just dipped her into a vat of feces.
Okay, I thought to myself. Stay calm. You can figure this out. I began to unload the provisions I’d brought: clean clothes. Plastic bag for dirty clothes. Diap………. Where are my diapers? WHERE THE HELL ARE MY DIAPERS?

Mother. Fucker.

I was diaperless. I was baby wipeless. I stood in the bathroom of the Olive Garden trying to wrap my mind around the fact that I had no diapers or baby wipes, and was holding a wiggly toddler covered in shit. My brain was flitting about like a hummingbird on crack trying to figure out what to do first. The Hummingbird landed on: Get the dirty clothes off. I peeled off her shirt as carefully as I could, leaving a stinky trail all the way up her body to her neck. I dumped it in the bag and removed her shoes. I spread some changing table liners down and lay her on top of them, removing her soaking jeans. I feel like I remained calm and collected throughout this entire ordeal, even when my child started to writhe around on the table like a shit-covered crocodile in a death roll.

While I was undressing my stinky offspring, people were coming in and out of the bathroom.. Not even paying Nellie and I any attention. Once I had gotten Nellie down to her diaper, the real challenge began. How the fuck do I get a diaper and wipes? Also, how am I supposed to get this vile substance OFF of my kid’s body? IT WAS EVERYWHERE. I stood there holding my wiggly, crap encrusted child under the armpits for a few seconds when I made my decision. I stripped her defiled diaper off, tossed it in the trash and carried her to the sink. I plopped her down and in what has been pretty much the classiest and most glorious moment of my career as a mother thus far, I gave my daughter a bath right there in the restroom at Olive Garden. Thankfully no one came in to find me hunkered over my naked, reeking child desperately splashing water over her while she squealed with delight. Once I’d gotten most of the funk off her I took her back to the changing table where I pulled out two more of the paper liners. I wrapped them around her like some kind of makeshift hospital gown, poked my head out of the bathroom door and caught the attention of a hostess. I told her that I needed some help and asked if she’d get my diaper bag from my husband. A few moments later, she appeared and I took the bag from her, thanking her profusely.

Now that the scent of diarrhea was only faintly clinging to both my daughter and myself, it was time to get Nellie into clean clothes. By this point she was agitated and tired of my antics so she started to fuss and wiggle even more. I managed to get her dressed, get all of her soiled clothes into a  plastic bag and we were finally done. I grabbed everything and headed back to my table where my husband was still sitting, enjoying his meal. He looked at me. I looked at him. I was a woman who had seen terrible, terrible things and I think it showed on my face.
“Armageddon.” was all I could say. I handed Nellie to him and said, “Do not set her down on the high chair. We are going to have to wipe that thing down. I have to go wash my hands.”
I went off, washed my hands and returned to finish my meal. My husband had paid the tab during my harrowing ordeal in the restroom and when Nellie started to fuss, he went to take her outside. I sat and finished my salad with  my disgusting bag o’ funk at my feet.

Our car still wasn’t ready so we went to wander around Toys R’ Us. I felt like a hobo toting my diaper bag across my body, my purse over one arm, my hoodie draped over my shoulders and a bag full of shitty clothes in my hand. I wondered if anyone would stop and sniff the air and say, “What’s that smell?” I would respond, “That’s me. What you’re smelling is garlic bread, baby shit, and shame.”

When we went to retrieve our vehicle, we had to buy a brand new tire and they advised us to replace the other rear tire as well.  We were finally given the keys to our car and were able to leave. We drove home with the radio playing and the smell of soiled baby clothes gently wafting from the backseat.

We left our apartment that afternoon in hopes of getting a new car. We ended up with a belly full of pasta,  two new tires, and – literally – a bag full of shit.

Read Daddy Green’s side of the story here.

Wordless Wednesday :: Brains

Who is totally not a zombie. Nope. *shifty eyes*

Losing My Mind (and Debit Card)

This morning, I almost lost my mind.

I stopped at a gas station to put gas in the car on the way back from dropping Josh off at work. I had Nellie in the car with me. I pulled next to the pump, walked around to the backseat where I had my purse and her diaper bag. Nellie gave me a big grin and I pulled my wallet out of my purse. I took out my debit card and she started fussing and crying, wanting my wallet. I reached into her diaper bag and grabbed my old wallet – which is now Nellie’s. I handed her the pink billfold with the butterflies on it and she gave me another grin as she turned it around in her hands. I smiled at her…………

And completely and utterly forgot what I did with my debit card. I opened my wallet again. Checked my pockets. What the hell? I digged through the diaper bag. Opened my purse and emptied it. Panic began to rise up in me and Nellie began to screech and whine, tired of being in her car seat. She reached for me as I was frantically turning our backseat upside-down trying to find my green debit card.

I became increasingly agitated; not only was I missing my debit card and was in need of gas in the car but moreso… How in the holy living hell did I lose my debit card IN MY OWN CAR? As Nellie’s cries turned louder, I became more stressed. I started to tear up, saying to myself, “How in the hell can this happen? How did I lose my own damn card in MY CAR?”

I looked around on the ground surrounding the car. Nothing. I quickly searched my pockets, my wallet, Nellie’s wallet. I had no idea what to do. I was tearing up even more and feeling helpless. What was I supposed to do? I lost my damn debit card while standing there. Was I losing my mind? Going senile? The damn thing was gone. Should I call my bank and cancel it? I got back in the car and drove off to the side of the station to collect my thoughts. I took some deep breaths, fighting off tears. Nellie was wailing, I was on the verge of yelling at her and I felt so stupid. I decided to drive back toward the pump and park at the one right across the way from it so I could look on the ground again. I pulled around, tears in my eyes and parked the car. I looked out the window and there on the ground I saw it – the backside of my green debit card. I flung the door open and hurried over to where it was. I picked it up, flipped it over and read my name on the front. I felt so relieved I almost started crying again.

In my haste to retrieve Nellie’s wallet so she’d stop crying, I must have tried to shove my card in my back pocket but missed. I felt silly that I’d gotten so panicked while standing there pumping my gas, but it really freaked me out that I legitimately could not remember what had happened to my card. I had no recollection of putting it in my pocket, or even going through the motions of doing so. I was distraught at the thought of having to cancel my card, and really disturbed at the fact that my memory & mind had failed me so terribly… And Nellie crying and reaching the whole time made things worse.

This isn’t the first time I’ve temporarily misplaced something when stressed about Nellie crying. I realized that the sound of her crying has a stressing effect on me – I hastily do whatever I can to stop the sound and make her happy and in doing that everything else leaves my brain. It’s like my brain’s not capable of focusing on anything but making her crying stop.

So that was my morning. I’m losing my mind, but at least I found my effing card, right?

Warm Glowing Warming Glow

I admit it. We’re a TV family. I like watching TV, Josh likes watching TV, and yes. We let Nellie watch TV, too. Not just occasionally, or as a treat, but every day. She watches PBS every morning and you know what? I’m fine with it. She enjoys it, I’m okay with what she’s watching because for the most part, the shows she watches have some educational value. For instance, one of her very favorites to watch are these kiddos:

That’s Super Why & the Super Readers for those of you who either don’t have kids, or have them and aren’t a TV family. I enjoy Super Why because it involves problem-solving, reading, letters, and teaches lessons like “try new things” and “share your stuff”.

I’m not a huge fan of mindless children’s shows, so I appreciate the cleverness of these two shows:

I think that the theme song to Dinosaur Train is really fun and clever, and so is the one for Martha Speaks. Martha also teaches words, which I love.

I of course love Sesame Street, because who doesn’t like to see Neil Patrick Harris singing & dancing while he sings about shoes? And the True Blood spoof: True Mud? Hilarious!
I don’t love all the shows Nellie loves. There are a few that mystify me:

Your mother will not mind at all if you do. WTF, Creeper?!

Cat in the Hat’s a little wacky & kind of creepy to me. His laugh kind of gives me the heebie jeebies, and every time he says “flick the jiggermawhizzer” I’m like ………………………

Then there are the cartoons that I just downright HATE. The voice, the repetitive songs, HIS HAIR… I’m talking, of course, about:

GYAH. SID THE SCIENCE KID. HATE. HATE.

I don’t know what it is about Sid the Science Kid, but my child loves him. As much as I hate him & his stupid little songs, Nellie loves him. She grins and claps and dances when he comes on and I’m left groaning and wishing for ear plugs or a beer. Or both.

Like I said, we’re a TV family and I don’t see anything wrong with it. We still interact with her, watch the shows with her, and read to her. She loves her books. She can just sit and play with a book for 20 minutes. But she also enjoys her “baby stories” and I like to watch her enjoy them because she’s adorable sitting there in her PJs and drinking her milk.

What about you? What’s your take on children and TV? If you’re TV-watchers, what are your kids’ favorites? Do you share my loathing for Sid the Science Kid?

P.S. Bonus “cool” points & and imaginary cookie to anyone who identifies what my blog title is from.

Rambling, Douchecanoes, & Tapeworms Named Seth

You’re in luck. Do you know why? It’s a Friday night, I’m completely sober, and I’m bored as fuck. That means that you get a rambling, pointless blog post from me.

Holy shit. Someone just revved up a motorcycle, or car, or helicopter outside and I’m about to go out and punch them in the throat. Nellie just went to bed.

Why do people have to be such douchecanoes? Like, I get that you have a vehicle with a motor. Do you really have to sit in the parking lot of an apartment complex and rev it? What are you trying to prove? I would like to wait until approximately 2 A.M., find where you sleep, creep into your room and bang cymbals directly in your face. Then spray you with silly string. Then run away laughing.

I really have nothing of importance to say here tonight. I ate half a thin crust pizza earlier and I’m still not full. I think I have a tapeworm. I think I’ll name it Seth. Seth is a good name for a tapeworm.

Seth is a wino.

Where was I? Oh, right. I’ve been trying to get off the internet for like, an hour now. I keep saying I’m going to go read and then I never do. My book is sitting right next to me, waiting for me to open it and read. It’s not that I don’t want to, it’s just that Internet is seducing me with its’ wiles.

Speaking of douchecanoes, I just had to let my cat in. He is King Douchecanoe. In hindsight we should have named him that but instead we named him Hannibal.

Wow. This post has gotten really out of control and is pretty much just an excuse for me to screw around with Picnik. I think I need to go now.