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Who Does That?

In April, I went to NJ/NY to celebrate my Fabulous Friend’s birthday. Man, traveling alone has it’s perks. I sailed through the airport with just my pre-Mommy purse with no Cheerios, diapers or food pouches in sight! I felt light as a feather and slightly guilty for being away during such a busy weekend for The Coach…but, that subsided once I got on the plane and took a nap. Sweet joy in the morning! 🙂

It was great to relive the old days of 9 p.m. dinner reservations, cab rides, subways and city shopping! I love Savannah but, a shopping hub…it is not.

On the morning of my flight home, I realized that during our day of shopping, I neglected to pick up a little something for The Coach. Probably wouldn’t have been a problem if I hadn’t made a point to tell him, “don’t worry, I’ll pick up something for you too” when he asked me what it was like to shop in NYC.

Crap.

My husband can be a little tricky to shop for so, I may have backed myself into a corner here. Luckily, I had a layover in Atlanta and they have some decent shops in the airport so, maybe I could pull off something nice for my guy.

Hold on, am I really planning a shopping trip to an airport? I am indeed…my choices were limited.

When I got to Atlanta, I jumped on the train to my terminal and headed to my gate. Surprisingly on the way, I found a shop that had some items I thought he would like and wear. I picked up a nice button down shirt and mentioned to the clerk that I was lucky I found the store since I didn’t buy anything for my husband while in NYC.  The sales clerk said to me, “Make sure you take the shirt out of the bag so he doesn’t see the airport sales receipt”.

My response, “My game is tight, kid. I got this.”

I landed in Savannah after a LONG delay on the runway in Atlanta. I kissed The Coach and saw my precious girl in the backseat happily eating Cheerios and sporting her Father’s attempt at hair styling. Let’s just say I had some work to do before we sat down for dinner at the restaurant. But he tried, bless his heart.  🙂

Once we got home, I gave Georgia Peach her gift (she is almost 2 so, a mini I LOVE NY stuffed animal FROM THE AIRPORT is cool). I did not put The Coach’s gift in my luggage, I kept it in the bag from the store, exactly what the sales clerk warned against. So, when The Coach brought in my luggage from the truck he asked what was in the bag. I told him it was his gift.

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He liked it and thanked me. THEN…

He started asking me about the store. I must have forgotten who I married.

The Coach: I have never heard of this store before, is it in NY? I really like the shirt, I wonder if they have a store close to us?

Me: (Getting GP ready for her bath). I’m not sure of all of the locations (besides the one at Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport, Terminal C!).

The Coach: Did you buy this shirt at the airport in Atlanta?

Me: (Cracking up). Huh? What? Wait? What? How did you find that out?

I walked back into the living room to I see him on the laptop, pointing to the name of the store and it’s location…the only one,  Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport. Come ON!

Me: (Still laughing). I mean, who are you?? Honestly, I ran out of time and had to make it happen. Do you like the shirt any less? And what makes you jump online and look up the store, anyway, who does that?

The Coach: I liked the shirt so, I wanted to see if there were other things I might like but, I’m guessing the store is not big, since it was probably a kiosk.

Funny. 🙂 It was an actual store, big shot.

Many a great find are attributed to a kiosk.  Here are a few…

  • Designer (knock offs) Sunglasses

  • Your Name on a Grain of Sand

  • Whatever the people who always ask if THEY can ask you a question sell. Lotion? Timeshares? Nail Buffing systems?  I don’t know.

  • A great DJ Mix CD

In the end, The Coach liked his shirt and will have to go to the designer’s website for more shirts with a similar style or he can just take a trip to Hartsfield-Jackson.

And, I, on the other hand, realized that ‘my game’ is no longer tight. 😉

 

Who Knew?

This may sound pretty creepy but, I am a bit of a stan.  Most people know that I am slightly obsessed with our daughter-in-a-good-and-well-meaning-Mommy-kind-of-way. I am always looking for ways for her to positively interact with other kids around her age.  Since my attempt to join a Mommy Group was an epic fail.  Mommy’s gotta keep it moving.  So, recently, I have been aggressively looking into different play environments outside of storytime at the library  for Georgia Peach (GP).  Big thanks to Junk Food Nanny (who has been eating salads lately) for taking our Southern Belle every week!

First, we tried one of the Plantation playgrounds (you read it correctly, check it out here).

Each time we went, we were the only 2 people there. Kinda defeats the purpose but, I like hanging with my little Mama so, always time well spent. Besides its easier to ‘catch’ GP when she attempts to walk down the slide instead of actually sliding down it. 😉

Next, we tried one of the mall playgrounds. It went a little like this…

Upon arrival we parked the stroller in the designated area, read the rules, loaded up on antibacterial, removed her tiny shoes, secured our belongings (we don’t know these people), and entered the playground.  We both observed the scene. There were about 15 kids ranging from 12 months to 8 years old.  But as with any social setting/event there are a couple of standouts in the crowd.  The same goes with the little ones.

We immediately noticed two boys terrorizing another boy. They were chasing, tackling, dragging him by one leg and one arm, pouncing on him then stopping when his whining and crying started to attract too much attention. As soon as they released the little boy, they would ‘find’ him again. Problem with this was he kept running to the same place…his Mother.  Learn little boy, learn!  Turns out all of these boys were brothers. After a few concerned looks from other Parents, the Mother asked the brothers to play nicely.  Clearly she doesn’t care if the Menendez Brothers take the little one out.  Better watch your back, Momma.  You and Dad could be next.

Before we had a chance to recover, the next Lindsay Lohan runs up to GP grabs her shoulders and screams in her face.  Stunned, we both looked at her like Little Lindsay was cray cray.  I bent down to politely tell little Miss Congeniality to take her hands off my kid while GP just looked at her like she was missing a few marbles.  Around this time, ‘Lindsay’s’ Dad comes over to redirect her energy elsewhere.  Thanks for the help, Dr. Huxtable.

Despite the rocky start, GP had a good time.

Fast forward to a couple of months ago…

I was working in my home office (my desk faces the window overlooking our street) when I saw a woman I hadn’t seen before walking with her two children.  One was driving a little car and the other was in a Moby.  The little boy driving his car seemed to be close to GP’s age and was actually listening to his Mother’s directions.  Where has this family been hiding? How can I meet these people?   After about a week of seeing them every day around the same time walking past our house, I took matters into my own hands.

The next time I saw the Neighborhood Mom and her little ones walk past our house I would have to stop them.  But how?  I would probably freak out if this happened to GP and I, but this is what I did to this well-meaning family….

When I saw them coming, I threw on my jacket and hat, put on my shoes, ran downstairs and out into our garage, whipped the garage door open, started running down the driveway and across the street toward this innocent family all while waving my arms and yelling, “Excuse me, excuse me!”

The Neighborhood Mom stopped and asked her son to stop driving his car as well (very cute kid by the way).  He did and politely chilled as I began my ridiculous rant.  I started explaining how we have been looking for well-behaved age appropriate kids in our area for GP to play with and how I would love to get to know her and see if GP and her son would enjoy playing together.  She was very gracious and agreed to let me know when they planned to take their early evening walk so the kids could meet and we could get to know each other.

The introduction went as well as it can go for a nearly 2 and 3-year-old and I enjoyed meeting the Neighborhood Mom too!  Everything was going great until she says, “I wish we would have met sooner, WE ARE MOVING in about a month.”  Come. ON!

Turns out, it is only a 20 minute drive to their new neighborhood so, we can manage it.

But, who knew the lengths I would go through to ensure we had a socially balanced well-adjusted mini genius?

The adventures continue… 🙂

I Don’t Care

A couple of months ago, I was back in the best city ever :-), for a fabulous wedding and to celebrate my dear Friend’s new job and relocation back to the East Coast. We planned to go out for dinner and drinks with some of her friends at around 9p to celebrate…just like the old days. On the drive over to the restaurant, my Friend and I were catching up when she says to me, “I predict you will say ‘my Husband’ about 11 times during conversations tonight.”

Wait, was she talking to me? Probably since I was the only other person in the car, but huh?

Have I graduated from baby updates to name dropping?

Do I say ‘my Husband’ constantly in conversations when talking about the Coach?

Have I turned into ‘that woman’?

To be fair, I am a newlywed and I enjoy it quite a bit, thank you very much. But this comment made me question the content of my conversations. It’s not like I squeeze in a ‘my Husband’ while talking about politics, food, fashion, reality shows or more importantly Scandal. Or do I?

Here’s what I realized…I don’t care! That’s right, I said it. I don’t care. Here’s why…

About 10 years ago, after breaking up with a guy I probably would have vomited on if our Georgia Peach had dated, I made a list. I mean seriously people, you make a list of things you need at the grocery store so don’t look at me all sideways about a list for a LIFE LONG PARTNER. A list of all the qualities I wanted in a Husband and what I wanted our relationship to look like. I tucked it away and over the years I would pull it out review it and revise it. Each time I would pray over the list asking God to remind me not ask for qualities in another I didn’t possess myself. I had on it things that would complement my personality like being family oriented and sincere. Sincerity was the quality my beloved Grandma Josie said she was the most drawn to when picking my cool Grandpa Joe. They were married for just short of 40 years when my Grandpa passed away (they had 11 children so there were CLEARLY other qualities they saw in each other). But, their relationship showed me a level of commitment to each other and to their family that remains with me and I pray to have in my own marriage.

So, after years of praying (and crying) for a great partner in life, I drafted the Coach.  🙂

I waited a long time for the right man for me so, I am more than happy to say with pride, my Husband. I love my Husband, love that we are friends, love being married to him, love that we have to work together to resolve our differences and that we work on communicating with one another, love that we are a team, love that he is a great Father to Georgia Peach and love that he is sincere.

Thanks for the great advice, Grandma Josie. I think you would have liked, MY HUSBAND. 🙂

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Photo Credit

Send Abuelita, Please!

Dear Current City,
First, I want you to know that I adore you but, we have a problem. Due to your lack of a decent authentic Mexican restaurant, I have resorted to something reserved for the very intoxicated or food amateur.  Now, the Coach and I have tried a number of places that turned out to be no bueno in my book.  I mean I grew up in an area where we would order tamales made by a woman in the kitchen in her home.  So, I didn’t think it was too much when I asked for a corn tortilla while at a restaurant recently.  This is standard stuff people. To be fair, not every place was entirely bad but, some things are a must.  My corn tortillas being one of them.

Not long ago I was beside myself with needing some Mexican food so I turned to the only place I knew…Taco Bell.  Yes, Taco Bell. And after that delicious Doritos Locos Taco hit my stomach like a brick I remembered why I avoided this place. I think the Doritos flavored shell was the actual ‘delicious’ part of my meal. I do enjoy myself some Doritos. images-1

Do you think it is acceptable to not have a good traditional Mexican restaurant? Umm, and Tex Mex is not the answer. I’m looking for the place where Abuelita is cooking in the kitchen with her son or daughter and the fountain drinks INCLUDE horchata. I don’t need a ‘fresh take on Mexican’ so save your fusion combos and witchcraft recipes until you have mastered the basics.  I blame you for my gastrointestinal issues.

My sweet Husband is constantly on the hunt for an acceptable place for me and while we were in FL recently, he made a point to take me to the one Mexican restaurant I liked. I like him. 🙂 So, it appears I only have two options…learn how to make my favs or track down the lady who made the tamales in her kitchen by the bulk and have them shipped here.

Can you save me the trouble and get it together?

Sincerely,
Ashamed

More Cheetos, Please?

Now, our precious precious child has been on a plane more than most children her age and at the end of each flight we have been complemented and showered with praise for our well-mannered Princess.  I knew this model behavior couldn’t last forever given that Georgia Peach (GP) is a very active toddler and is known to throw a tantrum like a Sean ‘P Diddy’ Combs Annual White Party.  They. Are. Epic.  I was prepared for the flight well, at least I thought I was…

Here’s how GP challenged my readiness.

In the terminal before the flight, I decided it would be a good idea to feed GP.  Now, she has these great food pouches that travel well and she can feed herself with ease. Lately, she has been extremely fickle about having them though.  One minute she loves them the next she has thrown the entire pouch in a mini fit of rage.

On this day, she hates them.

No problem.  I anticipate this potential objection and BOOM have an old stand by ready…cereal.  She eats like the Southern Belle she is until she decides to kick my hand and there goes the food.  NICE.  GP thinks this is hilarious. I do not. Luckily, I pack food for GP like we could get stranded for a day or two so I was able to quickly regroup and get her a fresh pack.  Of course by this time, she is not interested in eating.  Maybe she wants some milk, I thought.

She tosses the sippy cup.

I know my girl and caught it before it hit the disgusting airport terminal germ infested 1982 installed carpet.  I get the nod for boarding early and move to the front of the line.  Thank you, Lord!  We make our way to the end of the jet way, I collapse the stroller and walk to our seat.  I put our stuff down and head to the closet aka the airplane restroom to change Lil Mama’s diaper.  We make it back to our seat to greet the grand prize winner…the lady seated in the seat next to us.

GP begins the flight in true Princess fashion.  Sweet and charming, talking and playing until about 30 minutes left in the flight when all hell breaks loose.  I still have no idea what happened.  One minute she is calm the next I’m holding a straight back screaming child.

Me: Do you want more milk? I sign to her

She pushes it away.

Me: Do you want to play with this cool toy?

She throws it on the ground (goodbye toy, you are now dead to us). Crying and screaming escalates.

Me: Do you want to play with the iPad?

This is what she is really wants to say to me….if she could speak English.

GP: Umm no, I don’t want that stupid sippy cup with the soy milk you make me drink because I can’t “handle” the cow’s milk.  And no, I don’t want to play with that tired old toy you brought for me, I’m over that toy.  It’s for 12 month olds, I’m 18 months old now…learn me Mommy!  And if you show me the Phonics Song ONE MORE TIME on the iPad today well…you already know….I’m TIRED!! Please let me sleep. Mommy!!!

I get it!

She is still crying and thrashing when the lady next to us touches GP’s foot and starts talking to her.  My kid starts to calm down like I have been doing NOTHING to help her this entire time.  At this point, I’m over it.  I’ll take any help I can get!  GP calms down and falls asleep.  Just in time for the Pilot to announce we are 20 minutes from landing.  Seriously?

Best part…we have a connecting flight. So here is a rundown of the high points:

  • The Gate Agent acts like I am muy loco by trying to board the flight when ‘passengers who need extra time’ are invited to board.  Umm, I need extra time.  Denied.
  • GP decides she wants to ‘eat’ my Cheetos.  She has two teeth so, her version of eating is sucking the cheese off and placing her gross used Cheetos in my bag from the store.  She gets a bit too ambitious with one and bites off a little and… throws up in my hand.  Excuse me, did you just puke in my hand?  This does not phase her…she keeps it moving. More Cheetos please.
  • Like an idiot, I  have on a white shirt so I have orange Cheetos dust all over my shirt.
  • GP keeps taking off her shoes and socks so, I let her keep them off.  Sure she looks like a Hillbilly but, I’m tired and hungry.  Besides I don’t look any better with my cheese accented shirt.  My Little Hillbilly!

Next time, I’ll bring the right toys for you and skip the Cheetos. XO 🙂

And The Party Never Stops…

Actual text from Junk Food Nanny…

I hope you guys had a wonderful Thanksgiving. Can you please see if the dates December 19-January 7 work for you for the Christmas Holiday?

What the what?  I’m pretty sure in bizarro world this time period is actually the norm for a holiday vacation. Where I come from?  It’s  job abandonment!  🙂

Luckily, we were able to come to a quick agreement on adjusted dates for their  ‘European Holiday’ to…OHIO.

Seriously?

Nevertheless, we love you Junk Food Nanny.  Happy Holidays!

Photo credit

Say What?

This is a true story…trust me, if I could come up with this stuff on my own, you would see my name in the writing credits for a tv show or at the very least I’d be working for Andy Cohen on Bravo in some capacity.

Days after moving into our neighborhood, I was still getting some accounts set up for our house.  I quickly realized that gone were the good ole days of city living with a dumpster at the edge of the alley, we had now transitioned to needing a ‘trash removal solution.’ Great.  So, I did some research and settled on one that met our trash removal needs as well as our commitment to recycling. 🙂  I called the company and was connected to the rep.

Here is how our conversation went.

Trash Removal Rep: Hello, how can I help you?
Me: Hi, I need to set up an account with you.
Trash Removal Rep:  Great! Let me get your address to check on the days we are in your area. I provide the nice lady our address.  And she says: Do you live in _____ Plantation?

Me: Yes, we do.

Trash Removal Rep:  We do too!  Don’t you just love LIVING ON THE PLANTATION?  Everything you need is there.  Grocery store, pharmacy, dog groomer, nail salon, gas station, restaurants, dry cleaning, parks, a lake, multiple playgrounds and pools, and even a church.  I mean there really isn’t a reason to leave.

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Wait…Is someone punking me?

As I listened to her rattle off all of the ‘amenities’ of the plantation, I shamefully thought to myself ‘there really ISN’T a reason to leave. Did I just think that? Oh Lord, what has happened to me?  I’ve been living in GA all of 2 days and I have lost my mind.’

Me: Well, it sounds convenient. We just moved so, we haven’t seen much yet.
Trash Removal Rep: It is a great neighborhood and you live in a section where they are still building.
Me:  Great.  Looking forward to exploring our new neighborhood.
Trash Removal Rep:  Well, we are all set.  Your trash pickup will be on Thursdays, the driver starts in your area so, she will be there before 7a.
Me:  Thanks for your help.
Trash Removal Rep:  It was great speaking with you. You and your family will love the plantation!

As crazy as it sounds, we actually enjoy living here. People wave to you when they see you, our neighbors have mowed our lawn just because, watched our house when we were away, checked on us when the storm knocked out the electricity, and stopped by just to tell us about a deal solely because they saw my beloved football team’s flaghanging in our garage. Nothing to complain about well…maybe one thing.

Because my Mom didn’t raise a complete heathen, we wanted to check out the church. I went online to look it up since it is pretty big.  I poked around on the site and looked at the leadership when I saw it.  One of the position’s in the church was…

GENERAL OVERSEER

I guess I’d better locate the North Star.

I Didn’t Think It Would Be A Problem…

Before we had our Georgia Peach (GP) we decided that we would have someone come to our house to watch her after I went back to work full-time.  We were still new to the area at the time and felt this would be the best option for my new-found obsession aka our baby girl.  Which worked out for both of us…the less I freaked out about childcare the better it would be for The Coach’s sanity. 😉  So, I found a couple of great candidates on sittercity.com. and started interviewing for a full-time Nanny a few weeks before my return to work date.  We settled on our current Nanny and all was well for about two weeks when I (trying to get to know her better) asked if she and her fiance’ planned to have any kids.  Her response, ‘yeah, in March’.  What the what?  Now, don’t get me wrong, I loves the kids, I truly do.  I congratulated her and asked all the questions you ask when you find out someone is preggers.  But in the front, back, and side of my mind all I could think was…Damn, Damn, Damn! (Florida Evans style).

Photo credit-tvparty.com
Photo credit-tvparty.com

So, after months of eating junk food, drinking sodas daily, and a diagnosis of gestational diabetes, our Nanny decides to start her maternity leave a week before our agreed upon ‘end date’.  Are you kidding me?  Now, this is partly my fault, I was thinking our last experience was the norm so I waited two weeks out to start interviewing-a week of interviews, then a week of training with the current Nanny-perfect, right? Not even close-now we have a week to interview, test out a Nanny to see if GP agrees and train. Seriously, I’m an idiot.  Surely, good times are ahead…

First Girl: Brought her Husband to the interview.  I guess if we had posted something on Craigslist, definitely.  But, the funniest thing about this was, her Military Husband was scared of the Coach! She never once interacted with GP. No, thanks.

Second Girl: Very friendly, immediately interacted with GP, asked about our daughter’s schedule, likes/dislikes.  Only concern was she also asked what our 8 month old’s favorite tv show was, say what?  We don’t like GP watching tv, so my concern was TV Nanny would be watching tv all day and so would GP.  On the fence…

Third Girl: Passed the interview with us but, never showed up for the home visit.  Thanks for saving us the trouble.

So after the background check and references were complete we went with TV Nanny for the maternity leave.  After some very specific instructions, things were going fairly smoothly until two weeks before our wedding.  I had a day trip out-of-town to take care of some wedding business and on my way back, I received a call from the Coach.

Me: “Hey, Babe.”

The Coach: “Hey. How are you? Quick question, are we having some work done at the house?”

Me: “Ummm, no.  Why? What’s going on?”

The Coach:  “There is a pickup truck in our driveway with AL plates.”

Me: “WHAT IN THE …. Where are you? TV Nanny’s Boyfriend is from AL.  Do not pass go, go in the house now!!! WAIT, let me call her and see if she says anything.  Hold on don’t leave…”

I call TV Nanny ask her how GP was, where she was, and what she was doing.  She tells me she is fine, she is in her playpen playing with her toys.  I specifically ask her if there is anything else going on, SHE. SAYS. NO.  I call the Coach back.

Me: “Hey. Go into the house.  She didn’t say anything about anyone being there and if there is another person in my house with my baby I’m going to end up in jail.”

The Coach: “I’m going in.”

Me: “Call me back.”

The Coach goes in the house walks directly to GP who was in the playpen playing with her toys and picks her up then turns to TV Nanny.

Pissed Off Daddy: “Who is this? We don’t allow people we haven’t met in our house and around our child.”

Scared TV Nanny: “Umm, its my boyfriend he asked if I wanted some lunch and I didn’t think it would be a problem.”

(Boyfriend jumps up to shake Pissed Off Daddy’s hand-Pissed Off Daddy does not oblige).

Pissed Off Daddy: “Well, it IS a problem and the fact that you don’t think it is, makes it a bigger problem.  This is a conversation we anticipate having with a 16-year-old babysitter not our full-time Nanny.  You can leave now, we will call you over the weekend.”

The Coach calls me back and updates me while I freak out the rest of my trip home.  I follow-up with TV Nanny and tell her we will talk in person on Monday AM.  So, Monday rolls around and at 810a I get a text from TV Nanny…‘I’ve been so worried all weekend and I feel so badly about not asking if my boyfriend could bring me some lunch but, I think it is best if I quit. You can mail my check to this address…’

She was scheduled to come at 830a.  Did this chick just quit via text 20 minutes before she had to work? You can imagine the tailspin this put me in, needless to say we managed to keep things afloat for the next 3 weeks which turned out to be the exact time Junk Food Nanny was returning.

Guess who had a giant Rice Krispie treat, a box of Dunkin Donuts, and a six-pack of sodas waiting upon her return?

Oh, Junk Food Nanny.  We missed you. 🙂