Thursday, August 20, 2015

Office Upgrade, Decorating Fail

This year I got an office for my birthday.

OK, so it wasn’t actually for my birthday, but the day before my birthday the IT guy came over and moved my computer and phone, gave me a bigger monitor and a keyboard with one shift key that only works if you punch the hell out of it, and I had to gather up my piles of paper and my drawer of shoes (how does that keep happening?) and moved into my own private space.

Now I have a door and can shut it for conference calls, or so I can eat lunch in private.

Now I can hang my coat on the back of the door instead of in the community coat closet where it comes out smelling of other people’s perfumes, cigarettes and other general odors.
This would be a great picture if someone wasn't crying
and everyone would look at the camera. 

Now I have four white walls staring at me, reminding me that I’m a crappy mom who can’t get her shit together and get some damn photos of her kids for her office.

I have a phone that is bursting with photos. There’s pictures of those kids sleeping, eating (they eat a lot), rolling around on the floor, looking at something outside, sitting on the potty, sitting in the bath, playing with other kids, playing alone, playing with each other, fighting, laughing, crying… and those were all taken in the past month.

Somehow despite all those photos I haven’t managed to buy any frames, upload them to Snapfish and have them printed. I can even have them delivered to the office. Or I heard the Walgreens app is good. My boss said if I do that she will walk to the Walgreens a block from my office and pick them up for me so that I have pictures in my office like a normal person. I walk past that Walgreens twice a day on my commute and I haven’t had those pictures printed.

This is all a very, very serious Mom Fail.

Chocolate cake. These kids are gross, I wouldn't put this pic up.
I guess part of it is that I have never been one to decorate my workspace. Then there’s the whole thing where I would actually have to take the time to sit down and sift through the eight billion photos I’ve taken of the twins since they were born 17 months ago. I just really suck at that whole photo thing despite the fact that I love photography and taking pictures. It’s the print part I seem to have issues with.

It’s that extra step. Plugging the camera in and uploading the photos somewhere. Placing the order. It takes time that I don’t have because “uploading photos” never becomes a calendar appointment in my phone.

I guess ultimately, photos are just something that’s never really been a priority. Everything in our house that’s framed, hung, decorated and otherwise not a wreck was taken care of by my husband. He hates having things half done or sitting around in some kind of limbo. It’s how our house got unpacked in a weekend and we have things planned out until the end of the year.

Maybe I should just put him in charge of getting photos for my office. The whole thing would be done in a day.  I’ll just continue to hide behind my computer, working, and behind my camera, capturing the parts of my life I never put on display.

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

The Hunt for Little Shoes

This weekend we were getting ready to go out and as I was putting on shoes I noticed that S’s toes were almost to the end of her sandals. And I mean touching the very top inside. And they were hard to buckle.

Apparently the kid’s feet grew overnight and her two month old shoes no longer fit.

Of course I work all week, and Stride Rite is 30 minutes away which puts us straight into bedtime assuming I feed them dinner. That’s a recipe for two kids walking around Stride Rite screaming while trying to crawl under fixtures or just making circles while crying.

Yes, they do strange things when they’re tired.

Of course I need the shoes by Saturday because we have something to do, and I won’t have time in the morning with breakfast and naps and what not, mostly because I want to avoid being that person with two screaming children in a store. Of course there’s the internet, but free shipping is 5 days (i.e. after Saturday) and for some reason I feel like I need to see the shoes if I’m buying them without sizing the girls.

Lucky for me (or not) I work downtown, and while I am no longer on the shopping extravaganza that is the Magnificent Mile, I am walking distance from State Street, which has pretty much all the same affordable things and none of the stuff I can only dream of (Ferragamo, I’m talking about you).

So lunchtime at lunchtime I bolted over to State Street to hit up Nordstrom Rack, hoping for a great deal on something fabulous, which wasn’t going to happen because they don’t carry kids stuff. I had to break myself from the magnetic pull of their massive shoe selection and stay focused. What’s next?

Gap. They have kids shoes, right? Sure, if you want your kid to wear one of two shoe styles that don’t bend and may or may not be made of wood. Next.

TJ Maxx; good plan. I got a compliment on my haircut riding up the escalator. This is a good sign. Big kids section, also a good sign. No kids shoes. WTF? Why does Chicago feel kids don't need shoes? 

I am now running perilously low on time and am answering emails while walking through crowded stores, attempting to not run into slow moving shoppers who are obviously not on a lunch hour.

Down the escalator and into Burlington.  This place is some kind of insane basement warehouse and there are directional signs everywhere. I find the one that says Baby Depot and somehow end up in men’s suits. Back down a small staircase and around a corner I found it, and there they were. Racks and racks of shoes for children.

Of course the sizes I needed was one of the smallest sections, and once you took out white patent leather and anything with a wedge heel (because toddlers don't have enough issues with balance) there were only a few options left. Luckily they were cute and I managed to land a pair of OshKosh glitter shoes and leopard print Keds in the appropriate sizes so each kid now has one size larger shoe. That way when D’s shoes suddenly don’t fit next week she’ll have a pair waiting for her.

Of course when I got home we had dinner, a bath, read a couple books and went to bed, and it wasn’t until later that I realized that all my running around and I didn’t even try the new shoes on the girls. I guess that means we’re waiting until tonight to play dress up.

I also need to find time to go back to Nordstrom Rack and play shoe dress up during lunch and find some new shoes for myself. Mom deserves new shoes too, and there was a pair of gold Jimmy Choo heels that were calling my name.

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Answering the Endless Questions

I wish had the time to do funny and clever mom things, or the creativity to think of things like arts and crafts. Instead I just write this blog, which I can knock out on my phone while riding home on the train or on my lunch break, and half the time it’s not even about being a mom because I figure that’s going to bore all the people who came to read about whatever else I happen to be discussing.

One Australian woman with twins has become my hero though after a bazillion friends sent me links
This is funny. People need to relax. 
to the article and posted it to my wall. Seriously, if she was in the States we’d be having a glass of wine together right now and telling our kids to stop doing whatever it is they’re currently doing that they shouldn’t be.

As a joke, this hero mom attached some FAQs to her kids in the stroller, presumably so people won’t ask her dumb questions while she’s out. While she never actually took the kids out with the signs, the internet predictably lost their shit because people don't have a sense of humor. Personally, I find everything not only funny but also true, and I would like to copy both signs right now and tape them to my own twins, who would probably immediately start chewing on and/or tearing up said signs.

Some people don’t mind talking about their twins and their conception, and trying to explain high school biology to people regarding that whole fraternal identical thing and the basics of ovulation.

I am not one of those people. I’m busy, frazzled, and when I’m out with my kids I’m trying to enjoy my time with them while keeping in mind that we only have one snack with us and I am basically pushing around two time bombs. Of course if either one begins to cry or fuss while we’re standing in line at Target answering the same set of questions for the 208th time that trip, said stranger asking a billion questions immediately brands her as the “bad twin.” She’s not bad, she's just tired of your bullshit.

There’s a follow up to the signs that should also be published, and that should be the list of stupid  comments people make that elicit eye rolls at best and nasty comments back from me at worst.
They're fighting for control of the elephant.
Of course I take a picture instead of help. 
  • There’s two of them (no shit)
  • Double trouble (I seriously hear this every four feet when we're out)
  • They can’t be twins because they don’t look alike (I have heard this more than once)
  • They can’t be twins because they’re both girls and don’t look alike (The education system has failed us all)
  • Wait here; I’m going to get my daughter so she can see them. (Apparently we’re a sideshow)
  • Better you than me (So many things to say, none of them nice)
  • Oh my god, I’d kill myself (This actually left me dumbfounded and I just walked away)
  • Two babies  - Ugh, I'd end up shaking one of them (What in the ever-loving fuck is wrong with you?)
Yes, all of these things have happened, and while the first few times are fine, time number 6,000 on any of those comments or questions just start to piss you off. So I support the Australian twin mom and her signs answering all the dumb questions. Maybe now people will back off and she can finish her grocery shopping or get ice cream with her kids without people butting in.

Too bad she didn’t take into account people don’t read.

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Leopard After 30

There’s been a list going around for the last six or so months that recently popped back up in my Facebook feed. It’s 24 Things Women Should Stop Wearing After Age 30. When it first showed up I ignored it, then it popped up again. Maybe it’s my impending birthday (where I will be continuing to push into the tick of my 30s) but today I saw it and it really pissed me off.

Let’s examine some of the things that apparently expire one magic day when we pass a line on the calendar.

Graphic tees – Seriously? Cause on the weekend that’s pretty much all I wear. My love of Guns ‘n’
Leopard through the ages
Roses or my new Vampira t-shirt blazon their logos across my chest for all to see. Paired with a pair of Converse (old sneakers are also on the list) and some comfy jeans and I’m ready for a day at the park chasing screeching toddlers who are somehow covered in dirt before they even get out of their stroller.

Leopard print – Screw you stupid writer (I refuse to name her and give her additional publicity). Just because you put it on the list I am going to cover my 30-something mom ass in head to toe leopard. In fact I just ordered a leopard print cardigan today AND I plan to wear it to the office, so suck it.

Furry anything (this was preceded by furry boots which I’m pretty sure aren’t a thing anymore) – I am a huge fan a faux fur and believe that strategically placed fur collars or detailing can really make an outfit. Then there’s faux fur coats and wraps that just reek of old Hollywood glamour if you do it right. Maybe that’s the writer’s problem, she has no sense of style.

Hoop earrings – Apparently they’re just for high school kids. I’ll be sure to tell my mother that. Oh, and my mother in law. She'll give you an ear full about your opinion on her hoop earrings. And all the stores ever. In fact, I just got a great pair of colored lucite hoops from Banana Republic. Apparently they were there for the teenagers since that’s such a hip store for the under 20s crowd.

Oversize sunglasses – Is there really another kind? My sunglasses are all reminiscent of Jackie O.
My over 30 feet are the ones in leopard
and are about the size of my face. So are everyone else’s sunglasses. Even eyeglasses are getting this big. Do they even sell a smaller size?

Short dresses, miniskirts and crop tops – You won’t see me in any of these things, but I have seen quite a few 30-somethings rock the hell out of a miniskirt or crop top. Sure, it’s usually the ones who spend a few hours a week at the gym, but if you do that and have rock hard abs at 32, show them off in that crop top.

There’s a myriad of other things on the list, some of which is a fashion crime for any age (platform flip flops, scrunchies and shorts that aren’t longer than your vagina) and other than that the list is just a scared 20 something with approximately zero concept of fashion and personal style (blue eye shadow can totally be a thing). She’s also obviously not yet 30 and is assuming that the second we pass out of our 20s our once nubile bodies pop out a couple kids and start to sag. We lose all concept of fashion sense and need to turn in our mini dresses and anything with sparkles and fur for mom jeans and plain tees.

Shit, if I took all the sparkles, fur, graphics and leopard out of my closet I’d have almost nothing left to wear.

At the end of the day does it really matter though? Being 30 shouldn't be about what you can't wear, but instead everything you can. By 30 you're an adult and over the mean girl bullshit and approval seeking. So wear what makes you happy, except maybe platform flip flops. Those things really are inexcusable.