Subourbon Mom


Stop Over-Achieving – Just Do Your Best

Do Your BestThe New Year is often touted as a time for reflection on the past, making plans for a better tomorrow, yaddah, yaddah, yaddah…

F*#* that.

My reflections on the past come at two or three o’clock in the morning after being awakened by especially searing hot flashes. And, since my hot flashes appear as often as Trump recklessly tweets on foreign policy, I think I’ve reflected a lot over the last 365 days. When I wake up like that, the world seems like a dark place and everything I ever said was wrong…I What was I thinking? That was the worst parenting decision I’ve ever made…Please God, let that email not have been Reply All…My hair does not look like Farrah Fawcett, I don’t care what they said at work…

My plans for the New Year are what they should always have been – just do your best. Note to self: be happy being a 70-percenter.  C’s get degrees, and average lives deserve high-fives.  Quit freaking out that your list isn’t done, you over-achiever – at least you have a list. In fact, at least you have a pen and paper and you were allowed to learn how to read and write.

Some days, doing your best may mean cranking out that detailed, raise-inspiring report for work, driving your child to a specialist appointment and hearing bad news but giving them a reassuring smile, or helping a friend who’s parent has passed away by organizing the wake.  Other days, doing your best may be as simple as remembering to undo the seat best BEFORE you try and get out of the car (yes, I forgot).

Doing your best is relative. One of the things the Orange Theory Fitness program has taught me (besides that I HATE riding the bike and most lunges are worse for me than burpees) is that everyone’s “best” is relative.  You probably don’t know that the man next to you on the rower had heart surgery a year ago, and he’s struggling to make his heart stronger so he can play with his grandkids; or that the woman two spots down who can’t plank for more than 10 seconds has shoulders that dislocate habitually and she’s willing them to stay in place so she doesn’t have surgery again; or that the girl on the treadmill who’s walking flat when everyone else is running on a hill is just trying to get through one class without using her inhaler (that’s usually me).

Just do your best, even if that means wearing slippers on your feet to work because you forgot to change your shoes (yep, did that too).  You got there, didn’t you?  You clearly were not meant to be there, so you’re already over-achieving, right? Way to go!

But for the record, your best better include using your freaking turn signals when you’re driving.  Seriously – the 30% that’s not my best will make an appearance if you make me guess what you’re going to do at a stoplight, or why you’re randomly slowing down for no apparent reason.

So…just do your best.

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10 Commandments of Christmas Shopping at The Mall
December 17, 2019, 5:00 pm
Filed under: shopping | Tags: , , ,
  1. 1362777490homepage_brioI am the mall.  Thou feareth me and loveth me. I am the mall.
  2. Thou shall bring no false values before me, like budgets or credit limits.
  3. Thou shalt not take my name in vain, especially when referring to the unbearably long list of Christmas errands you still have to do because you waited until the last minute. It is not my faulteth you procrastinateth.
  4. Remember Black Friday, and keep it holy.
  5. Honor thy sales and thy markdowns.
  6. Thou shalt not kill…time hanging out in Starbucks or restaurants. Thy shopping list loometh.
  7. Thou shalt not steal thy neighbor’s parking spot when clearly, his indicators blinketh.
  8. Thou shalt not bear false witness against The Mall.  Own up to where you have been; likewise, own up to the time thou killed while chatting with thy neighbor instead of shopping, and the silver thou hast spent.
  9. Thou shalt not covet thy fellow shopper’s loot. They arrivethed first.
  10. Thou shall visit no other retailers but me, especially not Amazon, Wal-mart or Target.


HGTV – Where’s All Their Stuff?

In recent years there has been a lot of backlash against the fashion industry for promoting unattainable ideas of what beauty is – and to some degree, it has responded – models are heavier, they are more athletic, and they have some visible flaws. In fact, studies have shown that just looking at a skinny model in a magazine can make you feel bad about yourself.   I’d bet money that seeing a house or well-designed room that you can never hope to attain because of either lack of money or lack of design ability also makes you feel bad about yourself.

Or maybe that’s just me.

I think HGTV needs to take a page from the fashion industry’s book and inject some real “reality” in their shows. I don’t know how many divorces that channel has caused, but I’ll bet it’s quite a few.  So many of the homes they renovate or purchase are out of reach of the average homeowner, or the costs of the renovations are misleading.  Now, I’ll admit I’m just as much an HGTV junkie as anybody else, but I constantly have to remind myself during the shows that what I am seeing is not an accurate depiction of what it takes to renovate, well, anything in your home.

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I fell in love with Chip and Johanna Gaines (Fixer Upper) like everybody else. I love her style and their TV marriage, and I even subscribe to their magazine – excuse me…their “Journal”. imagesBut there is NO WAY on God’s green earth you can do the renovations they do for the amount they say it cost. Unless…. you have decades of experience flipping houses (which by the way, is done on the cheap for maximum profit), own your own real estate company and your own construction/design company, which Chip and Joanna do. So, during every episode, in my head I add at least $5k – $10k at the end of each reno cost to be realistic.

UnknownOnce I ran through all the episodes of the Fixer Upper, I watched Love it Or List It. Hubby and I even talked about trying to get on the show so they could fix our upstairs. However, the producers never show these people moving all their crap and their kids and pets into an apartment and two pods while the renovation is going on, or the fact that they are on this show in the first place because one wants to stay and one wants to move.  I think there are already marital issues piling up that need to be discussed, and probably not on reality TV. And, nothing says fix those problems like since buying or renovating a house – one of the top 10 stressors in life.  You can’t tell me there aren’t some serious plate-throwing arguments during the process.

I really have only one question about those shows: what happens when the stagers take the pretty fruit bowls and candles away, and people have to move their old, crappy, dog-chewed, not-the-same-size furniture and towels into the newly-renovated home?

What I really want to see, HGTV, is a show about decorating with what you already have.  Show me how to display the glass bowls, framed menus stacked in the attic, blue coral my cousin gave us for a wedding present, decorative metal bird cage, and our three autographed footballs in a way that doesn’t make my house look like an upper-crusty Goodwill store.  Show me where to put my couch so that I can see the TV, the snow outside and still work on my computer with having to throw a blanket over my head to cut out the glare. And show me how to hide the damned cat litter so I won’t smell it, but I won’t forget it for so long that the cats get revenge and pee on the carpet.

And for God’s sake, will someone please explain what Joanna’s obsession is with shiplap?

But for now, until they can produce a show that accommodates my middle class budget, I’ll keep watching, getting ideas for Hubby to do, and then seeing which one of us breaks first – me deciding I can live without it, or him going ahead and building it so I’ll shut up. And while I watch, I’ll remind myself to look around, see that I live in a home with my loved ones, that is warm enough, cool enough, full of memories and souvenirs and things that make my life very easy in all the ways that really matter – and I’ll be thankful.

 



PSA – You Don’t Want Princess Leia Ears
October 22, 2019, 6:00 pm
Filed under: Middle Age, Misc. Humor | Tags: , , , , ,

Like many middle-aged women I know,  I recently had to get yet another piece of my face removed because I used to lay out on the roof with tanning oil, sauteing myself for future meals made of  wrinkles and regrets.

This time, however, it was a basal-cell something or other, and not just a precursor to skin cancer.  And, since I’m vain and didn’t want my dermatologist to cut a Franstein-looking chunk out of my face in an effort that may or may not get it all, I opted for undergoing the MOH procedure. In the MOH procedure, the dermatologist/plastic surgeon numbs you up, cuts one layer at a time, bandages you, tests it to see if they got it all (this takes about 2 hours per slice), and repeats the process until they know it’s all gone.  This can potentially take all day.  It has something like a 99% removal success rate, and these surgeons also tend to leave less scarring.

The process for me was a one-shot deal – we didn’t have to repeat the excision, and it was pain-free. However, there were a couple of things I didn’t anticipate:

First, HOLY SHIT WAS IT EXPENSIVE!! Even with insurance…so investigate before you get your vanity on.

Second, I was the youngest person there by 30 years.  The only people my age were the ones helping out their parents for the day.  I felt like a toddler.

Third, it looked like a Leper colony had taken up residence in the waiting room. These folks didn’t just have a cute little bandage on the sides of their faces like I did.  The men had great, whopping bandages covering their ears, like old, weather-beaten Princess Leah drag queens.

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And/or they had giant bandages over their noses and on top of their heads. It was like sitting in the aftermath of the best geriatric bar brawl ever. (I’d post pictures but HIPPA frowns on that, so I didn’t take any.  You can Google it, but it’s pretty gross.)

And finally, I had no idea what getting your face stitched up feels like.  For the record, it’s weird, and I felt like I looked like Heath Ledger’s Joker afterward (it actually looked pretty good).  Since mine was by my ear on my jawline, the internal stitches were deep and right by the jaw hinge.  As the doctor was tying the internal stitches, it didn’t hurt, but I could feel her tugging hard – MY WHOLE FACE MOVED.

I finally had to say something: “You know that’s my face you’re pulling on, right?”  She replied, “Yep. It’s the face lift you never wanted.” To which I said, “Well, just make sure it’s even.” Afterward, I has to ask:  “So is that my future sitting out there? I’m not a big Princess Leah fan.”

“Oh honey, no,” she said. “Those are the guys who’ve had a bump on their nose or scabs on their ears for years, and finally decided it’s not a cut or a bug bite.  or their wives finally made them come in. You come in every year, so you’ll be fine.”

You can imagine my relief…so consider this your Public Service Announcement: Go to your dermatologist, even if you think you don’t need to.  Chances are you won’t need to have this procedure done, but let’s face it – not everyone can look as beautiful as Ingrid Bergman with a face bandage.

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Chardonnay – The Perfect Workout Substitute
October 17, 2019, 10:13 am
Filed under: Exercise, Food/Drink, Posts | Tags: , , , , , , , ,
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What my friends give me when I get uppity and ask for a buttery chardonnay…

Chardonnay is the perfect substitute for an intense workout.

Yeah, you heard me.  I said it.

Now let me work my way around to it and you’ll see how my flawless logic enabled me to skip many a workout, guilt-free.

When you workout, your body converts sugar into energy.  During intense exercise, there may not be enough oxygen to complete the process, so your body makes lactic acid in response.  But this can build up in your body more rapidly than you can burn it off.  Symptoms of lactic acid build-up are cramps, nausea, weakness and exhaustion.

Chardonnay’s delicious buttery taste comes from lactic acid produced after the first fermentation.  Too much Chardonnay can leave your crampy, weak, nauseous and even exhausted the next day.

So…if you don’t like to exercise, stick with a buttery Chardonnay. You’ll be fooling your body into thinking you had a workout!

You’re welcome.  That is all.




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