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It’s not where you’re going… it’s how you get there!

August 9, 2012

We hear it all the time.  “It’s not the destination, it’s the journey!”

I recently had the opportunity to travel to The Big Apple for the ultimate blogging conference, BlogHer’12.  But enough about the conference!  Can you say….

ROAD TRIP!!!!

It all started when 3 busy moms decided to drive down to New York for what promised to be a spectacular weekend away.  The drive was a bit of an annoyance long but it was definitely the most cost effective plan for all of us.  But whose car to take?  Ann‘s newer small sedan?  We’d be cramped but the gas mileage was good.  My slightly older gas-guzzling SUV?  We’d go broke but at least we’d be comfortable.

Barb had a better idea that would suit not only our desire for a cost efficient trip but also the need for space and comfort.  I’ll spare you the details, but bottom line is we ended up with a sponsorship from Dodge and we got to drive down in a fully loaded Dodge Caravan.

The plan was to leave at 5am Thursday morning and make it to NYC by afternoon.   By Wednesday afternoon we were all so excited that we decided to leave at 9pm.  That night.

It should have been impossible for 3 moms to leave the city a full 8 hours ahead of schedule, but miraculously it all came together and by 9pm we were on the road and there was more than enough space for us AND our stuff!

Everything fits!                                                                      All packed and ready to go

The fun begins!

Loaded with a basket full of goodies (Thank you, @ottawadodge!) we laughed, shared, and bonded over sappy stories memories crazy stuff women share when confined in small quarters.

Surprise!

I took the last driving shift around 3am.  Out of habit I checked how much gas we had left and I was surprised to see we had MORE than enough gas to make it all the way into Manhattan!  My current junk-bucket car won’t get me to Toronto on a full tank of gas, never mind NYC!  Being 22 weeks pregnant and carrying what looks like a watermelon under my shirt I appreciated the adjustable pedals.  I’ve been wanting to try those out for about 6 years now, but never had the opportunity.  Let me just say they did NOT disappoint!

Bottom Line?

The conference, the swag (Oh My God the SWAG!), the parties were just what this tired momma needed – even the touristy stuff!  But the best part was the drive down.  In full disclosure I don’t remember much about the drive back since I slept through most of it; I did manage to snag a picture of all our luggage, swag (and even stowaway swag!) before closing my eyes.

Just enough room for the 3 of us!           There might be room for 1 more bag...

From one of us (I”m not saying who) getting hit on by border patrol, to midnight munchies, to getting lost in a rest station parking lot we made memories that will last us a lifetime.  The craziness of leaving early made us all feel like we were throwing caution to the wind;  we were no longer on the clock.  We had a blast, and it set the tone for the rest of the weekend.  I speak for myself when I say I left with a set schedule in mind and ignored it the minute we arrived in NYC.  I have absolutely no regrets.

And the best part?  It certainly wasn’t getting photographed with the New Year’s Eve ball.  It wasn’t being in NYC for the first time.  Surprisingly it wasn’t getting inspired with 5000 other bloggers.

Sometimes it really is about how you got there.

How Walgreens killed my NYC dreams

August 5, 2012

Tonight Walgreens killed my NYC dreams.  I found out when I arrived that I could have my picture taken with the NYE ball.  I was so excited for this picture op that it became my one and only ‘bucket list’ item for my trip:  I vowed I would not leave the city without getting that darn picture.

Sign at walgreens

After BlogHer’12 ended I walked 20+ blocks to find the Walgreens.  I didn’t care that I had to pee.  I didn’t care that I was STARVING.  I didn’t care that I was beyond exhausted.  I was on a mission!

I Had A Dream…

You see, I’m a New Year’s baby.  In my childhood we celebrated my birthday alongside Dick Clark’s show.  The ball would drop, everyone would wish me a happy birthday, then we celebrated the new year.

It was always my dream to travel to NYC for my 18th birthday;  well, my 18th birthday came and went and I pushed my dream up by 2 years.  Unfortunately 9/11 put a kibosh on that idea and I no longer felt like traveling to Time Square on a major holiday.  With 2 kids and a 3rd on the way I’m likely never going to make it to the Big Apple for my birthday.

Whack!

After finally finding the coveted venue and trekking over to the 3rd floor I found the display.  You could choose up to 50 backgrounds to ‘throw yourself in’.  I asked the cashier if she could help me.  5 staff members later I’m advised that “the Representative di’int show up today” but that “he’ll be here ta-mo-rah”.  She had no clue why he “di-int’ show up, just that he wasn’t there;  she assured me once again he’d be at the ready by 10 am the next morning.

Photo Booth at Walgreens

No, the schedule is not posted anywhere.  No, there’s no one else who knows how to work the machine.  No, we can’t guarantee he’ll show up tomorrow, but he should be there.

The dream has breathed its last breath.  I will now swallow my tears – and a thick slab of meat – as I reminisce on what could have been.

nyc ball

Goodbye New York, I shall miss you.  Sadly though, I think it is you who took a bite out of me.

Don’t you DARE pull the plug!

July 25, 2012

I noticed a random tweet in my stream yesterday – Something about a young BC woman who ‘dies for over one & a half hours’ and ‘comes back to tell the tale’.  My first thought is that this is another hoax story, but I’m intrigued so I click on the link.

The link brings me to an article in the Ottawa Citizen about Chelsie Thurlow.  I strongly recommend you read the article but long story short, her heard failed and doctors performed CPR for over 100 minutes before they were able to hook her up to a machine that would pump her heart for her followed by the insertion of medical device designed for that purpose.  Miraculously, she survived.  Not only did she survive, but she regained full neurological function.  WOW.

She recalls how she saw the doctors wheel her into the ambulance, how her mother’s voice brought her back from the warm an cozy place she was in.   How amazed she is that her 4 month old daughter still has a mother.

I may have shed a tear or two.  I may have been brought back to my childhood.

See, I had a terrible fear of dying in my sleep.  I would pray at night – but I knew you had to be careful what you wish for so I was always extra-specific:

Dear God and the Angels above,

Please help me sleep tonight and watch over me.  Please make sure that I wake up in the morning in this lifetime, this reality, this planet, this home, this family, this body.  Thank you.  Amen

My earliest memory of saying this prayer?  I was five.  I was in my early twenties when I first stopped reciting my request at bedtime.  A few weeks would go by and I’d notice I hadn’t said it in a while and would recite it then & there.

I was 28 when I stopped confirming to my mom: ‘See you / talk to you tomorrow’.  I figured if I said it it was real.  That was my personal guarantee that both of us would survive the night and wake up safe & sound.

Where this fear comes from?  I have no idea!  I’m no longer afraid of death – or rather, I’m no longer neurotic about it.  I will say one thing though – and I’ve said this for as long as I can remember:

If anything ever happens to me – anything at all – don’t you dare give up on me.  Don’t you DARE pull the plug.  Don’t you DARE think of not trying everything.  Because I WILL find a way to come back.  I know this.  I don’t know how I know this, I just do.  I don’t care if it takes me 100 minutes or 50 years – I will find my way back.

So don’t you DARE give up on me!

I’m a mean mommy, mean-mean mommy!

July 24, 2012

I may hgarbage bagsave thrown A LOT of crap stuff from my kids’ playroom, and I have no regrets!

I may have told my kids I was ‘cleaning’.  Again, no regrets.

There comes a point when enough is enough!  when you can’t see the floor, when you get hurt on broken dollar-store shit, when you feel like taking a match to the house and starting fresh…. it’s time to start purging!

I’m not that mean – I didn’t throw out anything they actually played with nor did I touch their favorite dolls and stuffies – that would just be cruel (almost witch-like!)- but broken / damaged / ripped / etc ?  Out to the curb it went!

To be fair, I’ve thrown out lots of my own stuff too.  Have you purged lately?  How did it feel?  What ‘disappeared’?

Dear Unnamed Restaurant, It’s Over

July 11, 2012

oversized lunch wrapDear unnamed restaurant of pub-fare offerings,

Today you have let me down and for this reason we must part ways.  Ours was a quick relationship (more like a one-lunch stand!) and I fear there’s not much you can do at this point to salvage my trust.

Let me explain.

Even better: let me show you the ways in which you disappointed me.  I’m not trying to be harsh, but you need to hear the truth.

  • When I show up for lunch with my 6 year old daughter and kindly admit that we’re in a bit of a hurry, I expect to receive my over-sized wrap and kids burger within 15 minutes of ordering – not 35!  Considering there were only 3 other patrons at the time, I don’t think it’s too much to ask!
  • When I ask for extra napkins, I expect more than 2.  I also expect you to not look so annoyed when you hand them to me.
  • Your wrap is 3 times the width of my mouth > There is absolutely no way I can eat this without making a huge mess of myself!
  • Actually, since we now have to leave I guess that’s no longer a problem… Thank goodness because we ran out of napkins again!

I could go on, but then I might be accused of merely being bitchy.

I’d like to say it’s been great… but it hasn’t.  It’s not me – It’s you.

Goodbye,

Domestique Manager

My ‘Glamorous’ Pregnancy… Adding Insult to Injury

July 3, 2012

Bulk BarnImagine my surprise when – at 17 weeks pregnant – I still can’t keep much food down without a handful of Diclectin in system. As much as this is perfectly normal for me, one never really gets used to all that puking.

On a recent trip to Bulk Barn to pick up supplies for Poupoune’s ‘Barbie-Princess-Sparkle’ birthday cake my pregnancy ‘glamour-level’ went up a few feet notches.

The Set-Up…

It’s a hot day, I’m pushing a stroller, and the store is not well-ventilated. After painstakingly making my way through the store to find my various supplies I queue up in line and wait my turn. Only thing is… I know I’m going to puke. It’s inevitable. And the space between cash registers is so narrow!

The cashier asks if I’m OK, if I need to sit down, if I need a bottle of water. No, No, Yes please & thank you – I think I’m going to puke!

As she leaves to retrieve the liquid gold water I can’t keep it in any longer.  I turn around and lose what’s left of my breakfast in the trash can behind me.  Violent, uncontrollable dry-heaves followed by what can only be described as the 3 sips of water I have managed to keep down so far.

The Injury

Now – I’ve had 2 c-sections.  I should be able to cough, sneeze & puke without peeing myself but apparently I’m WRONG!  So what happens?   I puke in a trash can and piss myself…. IN PUBLIC!!!!  Cocotte, the poor little thing, has a confused look on her face.  She has no idea what’s going on!  The man behind us in line?  He can’t stop laughing.  Not the discreet little chuckle you make when you find something amusing, but a full on belly-roll laugh.

What I want to tell him?  “I hope the next pregnant woman you meet vomits on your shoes you insensitive ass-jerk bastard!”   What I actually say… nothing.  Had I not just pissed myself in public I likely would have lashed out ‘diva-style’ (ninja kicks and all), but at this point I’m trying to not attract too much attention to myself.

The Insult!

I now have to do the walk of shame to the washrooms with wet pants and purple marks resembling 3-day old hickies around my eyes.  Alas, this Bulk Barn is situated IN. A. MALL.

I finish picking up my mess and ass-jerk bastard stops laughing for half a second to remind me to ‘not forget my baby’ as I’m trying to load my purchases into the stroller as quickly as I can. Remember that old cartoon where the bull has steam coming out of its ears and nose?  Yeah.  That!

Thankfully, Karma is a bitch.  It’s a small consolation but She’ll see to it that justice is rendered.

Pregnancy Acne – You’d think I’d be used to it by now!

May 25, 2012

This is what I woke up to this morning: a pimple on my eye! Even the geekiest of Beautygeeks could only suggest a dermatologist. What’s a girl to do? So now my nose hurts, my eye hurts, and just count your lucky stars I didn’t also take a picture of my chin!

The joys of pregnancy… they just keep on coming 😉  Maybe I really am turning into a witch?

Day 1 - Ingrown pimple on tearduct

A – ahem – “nice” surprise this morning: an ingrown zit, right on my bottom tearduct.

day 3 - ingrown pimple just under my nose
what can I say, other than ‘Ouch!’. You try blowing your nose with this thing!
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