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When You Forget the Holiday- Oops

You know when you get the notification alert that you have an upcoming meeting in–a half hour? Yeah. That kind of sucks, when you had totally forgotten about it. I was just sitting here working, snacking on some multigrain chips and about to log into my snack tracker on my diet app, and I was told I was about to miss an appointment in 2 hours. ARGH. WHY? Honestly, I should set alerts like every 15 minutes, because the ‘day before’ alert is too far from the appointment, and the ‘day of’ is always a shock to the system.

Or…maybe I should stop making appointments.

Oh, and this is kind of funny, but maybe financially shrewd and prudent: I did Easter this morning (2 days late). The rabbit “decided to come on Tuesday, because when he rang the doorbell Sunday, no one was home!” Few things about this. First, I was out of town, and the kids were at their dad’s house. So, they had a nice basket and presents there. Secondly, my mom took them on an egg hunt and they got candy with her also. However, when I got home Sunday night, my 8-year-old looked at my like Cindy Loo Who in the #Grinch after the Christmas tree was stolen, and wondered where her basket was here at my house.

“Mommy, did the Easter bunny forget to come?” she asked. Blink*Blink.

Um…Sort of? But, NO! He is just going to be a day late. So, get this though: It’s WAY BETTER for your wallet. I went to Walgreen’s to stock up on these squishy toys and pillows and candy yesterday, and it was all 50 percent off. Sort of a score. This bunny is the budget bunny and a day late, but not a dollar short!

Here are some of the treats I got.

So, she the kids were super psyched after all!

Maybe next year I can set myself an alarm for Easter. Hm…

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The Upside of Being Too Busy

Today, I found my phone in the refrigerator. Middle shelf. Yes, I had been running around like a maniac, hurdling over the dog, trying to get out the door for work when I realized I didn’t have my phone. Uh-oh…the panic set in. This is like leaving without clothes on. I mean, I HAD to find it, and fast. I leapt up the stairs, two at a time, huffing and cursing. Frantically, I ran back downstairs, pulling drawers open, rummaging through bags, turning round and round, like a robo-vacuum.

Then, it occurred to me: hey, I was making lunches, and maybe, just maybe, it’s in the FRIDGE! And, there it was. I couldn’t take a photo of it, which I thought to, because I was laughing, because I’d have to take it with the phone!

This story leads me to my initial thought when I sat to write this blog: I’m doing too many things at once. I am thinking about like 15 different things simultaneously. Part of this is inherent to my job in public relations and marketing, where I have multiple accounts I work on each day, shifting back and forth between them with different tones, voices, styles, and needs. Each account uses a different part of my brain.

My brain hurts, sometimes.

But that’s not always a bad thing. I like that I have to think at work, in particular. When I was an actress in NYC back in the days of yore (imagine me hunched over, telling this story in an old lady voice), I used to temp as my day job.

Me telling you about being an actress

The 8-hour temping days were seriously painful, because I was doing work that my goldfish could do. I remember I’d show up as the new “temp for the week,” sit in whomever secretary’s desk I was replacing, and look around.

I’d notice her pink, raspberry-scented Victoria’s Secret lotion, the photos of her kids, her pilled cardigan hanging over the back of my swiveling desk chair, and her change of shoes under the desk (some sort of beaten up flats). People would by-and-large ignore me, but sometimes there was a nice “coworker,” who would ask me about my life or say hi and bye to me. I was kind of like the fly on the wall. I don’t blame them for not wanting to get to know me, as I was there merely temporarily, hence the name “temp.” The days would drag on and on, and some days, I’d only be given the tasks of making copies or stuffing envelopes. Other days, I’d be given more “difficult” tasks, like writing correspondence. They were always AMAZED at how the office chimp was actually skilled, a graduate of a good college, with significant work experience.

Anyway, I digress. My point it this: I am elated to have a real job now that I get to use my brain and, even, that I sometimes feel harried! I’d rather that than staring at the clock, or trying on someone else’s Payless flats under the desk.

Me as temp with augmented chest

So it’s not all that bad when you’re too busy and leaving your phone in the fridge.

Perhaps I should invest in a phone leash.

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A Day in the Life of Me: My To-Do List Compared to My Daughter’s.

I found this amazing list my daughter wrote titled, “Friday After School List.” It started with the very obvious: 1. unpack backpack. This was followed by: 2. clean up room. Um, pretty sure that never happened. Then, there was, 3. draws/color, and so on…It ended with: 11. go to bed. This list, while somewhat compulsive and hyper-organized, also reminded me that life was so much simpler back when we were young, and maybe we ought to get back to that.

It also made me think of my own to-do list and how it compared. I decided I would write it down:

  1. Get up unwillingly: Dog and child bust into my room. Dog licks my face, and she leaps onto my back, while I let out a hurling noise.
  2. Wash out the coffee pot: Wonder why I don’t just get it ready to go the night before, because it’s so cumbersome to wash old grinds out from yesterday morning, and it takes too much time.
  3. Pack lunches: I LOATHE this task. Like, I envy those whose children have a school lunch. She won’t eat sandwiches, which leaves…chips and carrots and yogurt (which she always lets go to waste. And, they are the Chobani ones, which are not exactly cheap! #annoyed) And we can’t pack peanut butter anymore. He? He’s easier. I hate the water bottles too. It’s like they are hamsters or rabbits and need a water bottle every day. We never had water bottles. Pretty sure the one gulp I took from the nasty, dirty water fountain at field hockey practice was my entire water consumption for the whole day.
  4. Drive kids to school: even though they very well could take the bus, which drives past my freaking house. But, no, they claim they’re too afraid of COVID, and people on it are loud and wipe snot on the windows.
  5. Go to work…
  6. Pick kids up: Wonder how the hell the day went by so quickly. Tell the kids they have to self-entertain for the next two hours, because I still have work to do.
  7. Walk the dogs: Grab a roadie of wine, breathe in some fresh air, run my work day through my head and wonder what else I have to do, and then try to pretend that I am breathing and being present. Pick up poop.
  8. Make dinner: Convince children that it’s important to eat as a family, say grace to Jesus, and tell each other our “rose and thorns” of the day. Implore them that they need to take their time, stop wolfing their food, and tell them “no” to their requests for eating in their rooms, on their beds. #gross
  9. Pour another glass of vino.
  10. Play dolls or Barbies with daughter or make fire pit with son.
  11. Try to find a TV show: Scroll through Netflix, watch a bunch of trailers and realize I hate period shows and am tired of murder shows, so I turn it off.
  12. Go to my computer, read blogs and wonder why I am brain dead. Wish I could write.
  13. Make phone calls and stare at my social media.
  14. Play Words with Friends. Crush it with a few two-letter words, have one eye open because so tired.
  15. Brush teeth, wash face, stare at wrinkles, plan Botox and Fillers
  16. Go to bed.

REPEAT!

I wish I had a manicure like this. But, I don’t.

There are things I’d like to have on this list, like “Draw/Color” and playing with friends, like my daughter did. I might want to add, “Clean Room,” since the armchair looks like a hanging rack for misplaced clothes, and the bed is still not made (I hate this!).

But, maybe I’ll get to that tomorrow. Tomorrow is a new day, and a new list…I hope! Probs not.

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Sticking with What and Whom You Like: The Secret to Success

“When you find something you like, stick with it.” This is what an inspirational older man told me the other day, when I asked him how he was able to work for the same two companies for 50 years and stay married for 35 years. Seems simple enough, right? You like your job? Stick with it. You like your spouse? Stick with him/her. But, to me, that seemed outlandish at the time. Today, in many industries, people hop from job to job every five years, and even spouses and partners. I used to joke that when you meet someone new, you create a “lease” with him that will expire after five years. If you want to renew it, you can. But, otherwise, you’re good. Move on.

I think I’ve developed this sort of transient mentality over the years, having changed careers and cities many times. I’m also divorced. I did have long term relationships (8 years, 7 years, 5 years), but none that have lasted 35 years. Well, I mean, I would have been dating someone at age 10 if that were the case. Interesting to note: my boyfriend now is someone I met when I was 10. Hm… is this a sign?

Anyhow, I got to thinking that this man’s statement about sticking with things you like is simple, yet very complex. For some of us, it’s not so easy. Tenacity and perseverance are not necessarily attributes consistent with today’s fast-paced culture. Our attention spans are limited, we use technology to elicit immediate results, and we strive for more, more, more. Sticking with something seems lackluster, or not ambitious–complacent.

BUT, there is merit to it, I think, and something to aspire to. “Wherever you go, there you are.” That’s another saying. No matter where you move, what new job you start, what relationship you begin, you are still YOU (well, unless you undergo dramatic changes with therapy). I have learned this. Thing is, I’m essentially the same person I was when I was, like, 28. Oh, how I long to be 28 physically as well! But, yeah, I’m the same old, same old; and, now, just old.

I am going to take note from this man. From now on, I am STICKING WITH IT, IF I LIKE IT! YES! No need to think of bigger and better. Just BE.

Sounds easy enough, but can we do it? I hope to.

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“Was I Better Today Than Yesterday?”

“Was I better today than yesterday?” This is something to ask yourself. And, if you answer “no” today, then you will most likely answer “yes” tomorrow. Or, so this what I heard on an Oprah podcast on Fulfillment. I am not so sure that I can always answer “yes” the next day, though. The idea behind this notion is that we, as people, don’t repeat negative behaviors twice, and we work on making our situations better, not worse. We move forward, not back.

I don’t know about you, but I repeat my mistakes all the time. It’s like I’m sometimes this albino rat in a science experiment, who is missing a receptor firing and can’t learn well. I’m the broken rat in the Skinner Box experiment, who fails to learn that if you press the lever, you may get a food pellet.

Did I just liken myself to a rat? I did. Actually, I feel like that was in my subconscious, because someone once called me an “old rat.” I will leave that story for another day…. but, yes, it hurt my feelings.

I think, tomorrow, I’ll just do the same sh*t

Anyway, so, I am going to try to be better today than yesterday. I mean, it’s already 5:00 p.m., so I don’t have too many hours left before the day is over. I am going to grill some chicken on my new broiler, since my grill outside is still broken. Cooking a meal? That’s better than the ordering I did yesterday. Then, I’m going to try to get some writing done. Ha! That is so not happening. I’ll probably just have time to help my kids with their homework, play American Girl dolls, and zone out with some TV show. I mean, honestly? That’s kind of better than my day was yesterday, in the end. Oh, wait, but was I better…hm…that’s another question.

Tomorrow, I have HUGE plans to be better! I am going to work! Yay! Oh, but the morning will be better, because today I put my travel mug of coffee in my purse, and when I bent over to get the bags in the backseat, the coffee top flew off and spilled coffee all over my brand new car, my clothes, and the bags. I legit started to tear up in the parking lot, and a very nice, compassionate woman asked if she could make me another coffee. I told her, “no, thank you,” but she did bring me a new bag to put my stuff in, which was not covered with coffee. My faith in humanity is restored.

This was me in the parking lot, but covered in java

I’m going to work on being better today now. Tell me about your day!