Thursday, May 8, 2014

Eatin' Good on the Coffee Table

Last night I had an old friend over to see the new place and have some girl time. I took a little extra care to make a nice spread for us - a few delicious cheeses and sausage with rice crackers, red quinoa sushi, mediterranean dip and falafel chips, and some red, red wine. I banished the dogs to the basement (everyone except Amelia who had already put herself to bed for the night) and set everything out on my new serving tray on the coffee table. I lit a few candles. It was lovely, really. *Hostess fist pump - YEAH!*

Then someone woke up.

I returned from a quick house tour and invited my friend to sit down to eat.

"I am SO excited for you to try this sush..." I trailed off, looking around for wherever I had placed the sushi as it was no longer on the serving dish.

The wheels began turning.

"It's gone! It's gone! The sushi's gone!"

Amelia poked her head out from behind the couch, looking sheepish but also brat-ily licking her lips.

I'll admit it: some expletives were said/screamed, some unpleasantries were exchanged between me and my sweet, sleepy eight-year-old baby. She just looked at me, so proud of herself.

Then I noticed the cheese - or lack thereof.

A nice sliver of herbed brie, a big ole' chunk of smoked cheddar, half of a summer sausage - all gone, too. The serving dish bare. G*%%A$(& Amelia!!!!!!!!!!

In short, my dog had a $22 dinner last night. No biggie.

All I can say is that I HAD a nice spread, plenty of food, for my dear friend. But by the end of the evening, I was offering her leftovers from the night before. So far I am really nailing the hostess with the mostess thing, aren't I?

Icing on the cake: Amelia whimpered and sighed with an upset stomach all the live-long night.

Ah, the joys of dog ownership.


Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Once You Pop...

(You know the rest:) ...The Fun Don't Stop.

Thanks for that, Pringles.

In this case, once you pop...away from blogging for a day, it's hard to get back. But at least I have a good excuse for two plus days off the wagon:

I'm - ACHOO! - a mess.

Our new place is wonderful and delightful, and also veryyyy lush with trees, and plants, and flowers galore.


It started with a sore throat on Monday morning and went quickly downhill - who knew that allergies could feel so much like the flu? Shiver me timbers.

Anyway, here's what you missed:

Me coughing a lot // Me yelling at Rooney // Me yelling at Amelia for begging to go outside and then wanting to come right back in // Me telling Mar she is the best little gal ever // Me doing laundry // Me wanting to go outside in the beautiful day but then being too scared // Me shamelessly watching reruns of "Sex and the City" that I have seen no fewer than 100 times a piece // Me feeling worthless about the job situation and then pumping myself up and then feeling worthless again // Me perusing for jobs and then getting bored and then forcing myself to look again until my eye balls bleed // Me - ACHOO!

Get the picture?

Regardless, I hope you are having a lovely week and that we can wax poetic in this space again soon, maybe tomorrow?

For now, I am going to go dry cough into my elbow, and tug at my itchy ears like a baby, and count down the days to my last-ever day in this office: two and a half weeks from today! Hurrah (also: eeeeeeek!)


Sunday, May 4, 2014

Weekend Recap

First weekend in May and oh what a weekend it was. I mean, I guess. It was a low-key and productive weekend, just how I like 'em. (Minus feeling ick part of the time.) But anyway, here's a recap.

Friday: A long and harrowing day at the office was made brighter by the promise of an interview this coming Wednesday. The position is marketing manager for a large practice of veterinary surgeons - quite different from what I'm doing now but thinking maybe it could be a nice change for a while. Flexible, fun, and challenging. Would be great to grow my marketing skills since now I focus so much on the writing, editing, and production sides of media. I also think it would be so fulfilling to work for the betterment of animals every day (and get to play with them and take silly photo shoots and Tweet about them, etc.) 
Only my favorite couple evah - in one of my fav cities evah.
The evening was made up of "Sex and the City" reruns (including sobbing to the finale - I mean, has any show ended on a more fulfilling high note?!), wine and Thai with dear friends, and falling asleep on the couch during "The Amazing Spiderman" before 11 p.m.

Saturday: A failed attempt at getting a pedicure, wandering aimlessly at an art show feeling confused, giving up and having a margarita and people watching instead - then seeing "The Amazing Spiderman II" with D and the same dear friends. Enjoyed the movie, save a few lines from Jamie Foxx (did I make up that his last name has two Xs?), who plays a nice-guy-turned-bad-guy that runs on electricity, or something?! Worst (and also best) line of all was "It's my birthday - time to light my candles" before blowing up some shit. Andrew Garfield is such a handsome little thing - and he and his real-life gal Emma Stone have great chemistry. Sad ending, though. Man, superheroes always have it rough, don't they?
Spidey and his girl, Gwen.
     Spent the rest of the evening feeling ick and moaning loudly on the couch (much to David's chagrin). After some gnashing of teeth, I cracked a beer like a real man and we watched a lovely film "Short Term 12," which made me sob like a fool. Check it out if you have time (and like high-intensity emotional movies).

Sunday: Today was the best kind of Sunday - ever long. I hope the rest of the night continues that way. We slept in, were lazy with reading and coffee, strolled around Potomac Mills shopping (scored a new black suit with pants and a skirt to go with it, plus a shirt to go under it - all for under $200 - thank you Nordstrom Rack!), grocery shopped, made it home to the puppies and to do yard work, bought some new plants and flowers and potted them, cleaned up the house. Not bad since it's not even 8 yet, huh?
Our lil' front stoop. The Azaleas are finally starting to bloom!
     Somehow I still have some energy left but I will save it - soon figuring out dinner then lounging like a lug for the Sunday night shows - my favorites! "Game of Thrones" and "Mad Men" then off to bed to dream of the week ahead. More interviews? More beautiful weather? Feeling ready for whatever it is. So thankful for a weekend that allowed me to recharge.
     Hope your weekend was exactly what you needed it to be.

In summation, my weekend was grand: dirt under my fingernails, a lot of romantic entertainment/good crying, and Spidey.


Friday, May 2, 2014

Proof I Wrote Today

A Friday Haiku (Or Two):

Alone on the couch
Crunching on tortilla chips
Friday, I'm in love

The weekend is here
So many chores to be done
Let's eat pizza now

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Ending On a High Note

It's hard to feel like the beginning of something new is really the beginning - it always seems to feel like the middle or the end. Am I making any sense? It's rare that a "fresh start" feels fresh at all - except like the freshness of a deep wound, the newness of a heartbreak. It often feels scary, or frustrating, or unremarkable - kind of like the middle does. Or it just feels like the end overshadows that new beginning. The way things end means a lot - means everything in the moment.

The day I left The-Place-That-Shall-Not-Be-Named a little over two years ago remains one of the top five best things that has ever happened to me. I strolled into my last day with my Obama t-shirt on and without any stockings on and wore a shit-eating grin all day. The detailed procedures and files had been delicately prepared, checked, and explained to the person who needed to know. The deal was done. The clock was ticking. A few coworkers gathered sheepishly for cake and I don't even think I had any. I remember sitting there and watching everyone around me like I had stepped out of myself for a while - I wasn't even gone yet but I was already on the outside looking in. I'm sure I held conversations and joked and laughed, but I don't remember much of it - except one thing.

As an aside: In the weeks leading up to that day, I had been having a hard - not because I didn't want to leave (Lord knows, I couldn't get out of the door fast enough) I just felt like no one really cared all that much. That the late nights, and extra responsibilities, and pinch hitting I'd always stepped up to do had been irrelevant, a waste of time. How silly of me. As much as I am tempted to feel that way in my current job sitch, I stop myself. You should never apologize for giving 110 percent. You should never apologize for working hard and doing the right thing. If your partner, or friend, or employer doesn't appreciate it - then maybe don't stay with them too long, but never be sorry you did your best.

Back to the "one thing." My old boss had been frustrated that I was leaving and didn't take it well; we didn't talk much those last few weeks. So I was feeling a bit down and alone (despite my joy!), and I'll never forget one of the head honchos, who was a Good Ole' Cowboy and not someone I thought too fondly of, showed up to the tail end of my sendoff. He asked if I was staying in publishing and I told him I was.

"Good, good," he said in his slow drawl. "You have a real knack for this work; you'll be a true asset wherever you land."

Wow. As much as I had wanted to stomp out of that place with my middle fingers in the air (sorry, mom) I was so humbled in that moment. Sure, we hadn't seen eye-to-eye and he hadn't been an advocate for me all along, but he reached out in kindness as he sent me on my way - ended things on a high note. And it stopped me in my tracks.

There's something to be said for that. And as much as I want to buy this Cafepress shirt (thanks for sharing, Al!) and wear it on my last day here in passive-aggressive defiance, I (probably) won't:
If this is lost on you, I work in a cold (frigid?!), quiet, all-female office. Got it now?
Yes, the last two years working here have been trying, lonely, and deflating, but they've also been some good things, too. My time here has taught me to think on my feet, analyze a problem from multiple different sides, consider the bottom line, juggle a million things without hardly ever dropping one, and not panick in the face of chaos. It also has forced me to grow some semblance of a backbone and stand on my own two feet. This place has made me a little bit of a warrior, and for that I am grateful.

Am I ending on the note I wanted to end on? Am I walking away with a perfect plan of next steps and a cushion-y cloud to land on? Am I completely at peace with these last two years? Hell no. But I want to depart with a grateful heart. I am trying to move on to the next thing with a lightness of spirit, with an amnesia of the last five years - all the crying, and stress, and PIMPLES, and condescension, and not sticking up for myself, and extreme burned-out-ness - and free myself from it all.

I hear there's very little traffic on the high road.