Monday, March 27, 2017

24 hours...

it all began on a quiet, slow Sunday morning...


Scene: the kitchen; table is strewn with breakfast leftovers (banana peels, cups of milk half drunk, twice-microwaved cups of coffee) 
E is planning daydreaming about the garden we'll plan - even though there's still 6" of snow outside...

E: So - what do you want planted? do you want Kale again?

K: YES, but maybe a few less plants
 (we drowned in kale last summer... I was sending bagfuls with E for his hipster coworkers daily!)

E: and you want those trough planters for herbs, right?
 * "trough planters for herbs"
to be installed on our back deck railings

K: (I've only told you this for the past 2 years since seeing them at your friend's house...) yes - for some basil, for sure! and maybe some mint! oh - and arugula!!

E: Be sure to only plant what you'll use/eat!

K: Ok yea - definitely basil.  and mint..... and arugula!

E and Button go to Home Depot and return home with two window-sill planters, a mini-green-house-thing to germinate in, seeds for the garden (carrots at Button's request, kale, strawberries, and blueberries...) and.... only Basil for my planters.

K: didn't they have mint or arugula?

E: oh they did - but I didn't know what else you wanted besides Basil...

I couldn't find my eye shadow brush this morning... after nearly upending my entire (once neatly organized) makeup drawer...
Button was clueless when I asked him if he'd taken it out to play with it.

I then realized what probably happened - we had a date night Friday, and I actually styled my hair - and of course, because we're ALWAYS RUNNING LATE, I left shit all over the bathroom counter - and E must have put my blow dryer and curling iron away...
(1. yes - I know, how awfully nice of him to do that right?
except 2. they weren't on his side of the counter (we have double sinks)
and 3. he wound the cords ALL WRONG and way too tight around the appliances!!!)

And 4. I'm pretty sure my eye shadow brush had been on the counter, and when E put my hair tools away, it got swept into the strange abyss that swallows single socks and hair elastics...
("No good deed goes unpunished."    AMIRIGHT?!)

So it's E's fault that I can't find my eye shadow brush, his fault that I had to spend 5+ minutes looking for it (getting hangrier by the minute, because I also don't usually eat a bite of breakfast until at work) and subsequently it's HIS fault that we're all running late now...

And then, it was pouring rain this morning.
And I couldn't find ANY of my umbrellas - I have 3 or 4 of the little fold-up pocket-sized gadgets, I feel like I find one in each diaper bag when I switch out for a bigger or smaller bag, and think -Oh man, I'm going to be that so-well-prepared mom whipping this thing out of my Bag'O'Tricks later!

Except now it's a Monday morning, and I am running late, and I cannot find one ANYWHERE!!!

So of course, I grab Button's teeny tiny Minion umbrella, thinking I'll ask permission (LOL) to take it to work with me after they get dropped off at daycare.

And it's on the drive to daycare, barely 3 minutes from the house - carefully driving with my big galoshes/rain boots - that I realize I've left my brown ballet flats (my work shoes) at home, sitting on the living floor.


(In the time it took me to start this post, get distracted by work, meet with my boss, and then finally return to finish this post - I've also clogged the toilet here at work.)


Hope your Monday is going a bit better than mine....

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

all I blog about any more... Reading Challenge


I have nothing better to blog about than what I've been reading?

It's more like there's no time... I get to work just 2-3 (and sometimes 15...) minutes late, and then leave right at (or shortly after) five o'clock to make my way to my little guys at daycare. (The last week or so, right around 4:45 I get a big yearning to see them... and usually 5 minutes after we get home, I'm ready for a glass of wine. LOL)

Anyways... at least I can say I'm committed to this:

#12. The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern       Cat: 33/40: book set in two different time periods       fin Mar 13th
So I easily could have applied probably any of the Outlander series to this category (I mean, I'm 5 books in and - if I remember correctly - each novel has at least snippets in the current modern day before jumping back 200 years!)
This was a really neat novel, about a challenge amongst two circus performers - unaware, at first, who each other is... And the circus is not your ordinary RedBlueYellow CottonCandy-CaramelApples circus...
(You can read this great article to check out the book - and the two different time periods - a bit more!)

#13. World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War by Max Brooks        Cat: 15/40: book with a subtitle         fin Mar. 15th
Of course, I came across a telling of this story first via the fabulous Brad Pitt and the movie that came out in 2013...
The movie was very loosely based on the book - i.e. besides the fact there's zombies, the two don't really have any similarities...
But the book was very neat - different "first hand accounts," done in a series of interviews, of "the war" and how it broke out and how they found safety, and how the country and world recovered.
Very neat in how it was written!

#14. Knocked Up by the Bad Boy by Vanessa Waltz            Cat: 31/40: main character is a different ethnicity than you          fin. Mar. 16th
This was - well, I expected it to be a quick/easy read, with a mid-range level of writing, and some good hot sex scenes...
It was 2 of those 3 - but it was surprisingly well-written! It was fun to read points of view both from a Latina female (daughter of Latina crime boss) and an "Italian stallion" - son of former Italian don, and current Mafia KingPin - they have a hot one-night stand, she gets knocked up, and - HAHA ok so maybe it wasn't that well-written, I do remember the ending as a little abrupt... oh well.
Fun read, and one that I'll keep on my nook for when a little inspiration/warm up is needed ;)

#15. Maggie Dove's Detective Agency by Susan Breen        Cat: 10/40: book with a cat on the cover       fin. Mar. 18th
So funny, this category - after finding a goodreads list of "books with cats on cover" (and finding only horrible 1970s-1980s sci-fi) I settled on queuing up a book called Beasts by John Crowley...
looks good, right?! lol
So - a friend suggested that bookbub newsletter so I get daily book recommendations and deals and end up downloading 2-3 free books and am trying to cut down on the $0.99 and $1.99 books... all that to say, I came upon this one!
and the description seemed good, too! A woman in her mid 60's lost her daughter (a freak car-accident) and then her husband years later - she begins a detective agency in her hometown!
Overall, it was a fun read, and it so conveniently crossed this category off the list!

#16. Catch Me If You Can: The True Story of a Real Fake by Frank Abagnale & Stan Redding      Cat: 12/40: from a genre you don't normally read         fin. Mar. 20th
I don't normally (i.e. ever) read non-fiction, but this was written  like fiction - and I've seen the movie a bunch of times (so fun to watch!) so it was easy/great to bring the story to life in my mind, with good 'ole Leo!
But it was fun to read the true story and be able to see how Hollywood transformed the story into the movie for cinematic flair and theatrics - and there was a Q&A with Frank Abagnale about the movie and what he thought of it...

Currently Reading:
It's that chick, who wrote Twilight and The Host! (hope she keeps them coming, she's a good author!)
currently reading The Chemist by Stephenie Meyer...

Thursday, March 16, 2017

OhEmGee it's an EyeYooDee!

Six Things I learned yesterday:

1. don't bother showing up 15 minutes early to a doctor's appointment - they'll STILL make you wait... what should have been a "quick 10-minute appointment" actually stretched more than 60 minutes from the time I walked in...

2.Apparently for an IUD placement (guided via ultrasound), they want your bladder SUPER FULL...  ("Here, drink another cup of water, just in case...")

3. When they offer you a chance to "empty a little off the top" - after the nurse has unmercifully pushed down directly onto your rapidly-filling bladder to get good measurements - TAKE THE CHANCE.

4. It hurts is pretty DAMN UNCOMFORTABLE when the doctor "measures your uterus" (literally. like, through your cervix. YUP)
yet - the pain can be somewhat overshadowed by the concentration required to clench muscles in every attempt to NOT PEE ON THE DOCTOR.

5. Nighttime potty-training sucks (like when your toddler gets up on his own to go pee MOTN, but then PANICS OH MY FREAKING GOD I CAN'T GET MY PANTS DOWN!!!!! )
yay for getting up on his own - BOOOOOO for us STILL having to get up...

6. Things Will Be Ok if you need a freak-out/melt-down (after schlepping kids from daycare to foodstore to home) because each recipe you attempt to begin for dinner (butternut squash soup, chili) either takes WAY TOO LONG (simmer for 1-2 hours?!?!?) or requires an ingredient you don't have (EVEN THOUGH YOU JUST GOT HOME FROM THE FOOD STORE...)
because then - somehow - husband happened to bring home pizza from work.

That (and 3 glasses of wine with pizza) Is All.

Friday, March 10, 2017

Up In Hee-yah!

Round My House 

In my fridge you'll always find:
skim milk AND whole milk (one for me, latter for E and kids...) and yogurt. oh MAN do we eat yogurt...
Favorite family recipe:
either Grandma's bourbon balls (YUM) or my dad's "Saturday Morning Buttermilk Pancakes" OR - my family's Christmas Eve linguini and clam sauce...
Favorite junk food:
I'm such a junk food fiend... (but believe in moderation) I usually need something sweet AND something salty.... like, sour patch kids and honey BBQ fritos!
I'll do anything to avoid:
putting clean clothes away...
My secret cleaning weapon is:
Lysol wipes - they degrease the stove top, work on the baby's highchair tray, and do all the counters!

Before company arrives, I hide:
all the mail and paperwork and crap I pile up on the kitchen table =)
I love to shop for:
clothes for myself and shoes for Ms. Mack
I hate to shop for:
appliances (dishwashers, wash machines, cars) - E makes it such a big deal, researching this one and that one... I'm all, does it look pretty?!
Bad habit:
leaving shoes around the house.... and making "organized piles" that never actually get put away...
I just learned:
that dogs apparently have like, 40 teeth.... (Mr. Rocco got TWENTY NINE of those pulled last week, during a teeth cleaning at the vet's.... :\  )
Stuff I can't live without:
layering camis, my eyebrow pencil, a pair of good versatile flats, and cardigans!
Weird housekeeping compulsion:
I compulsively buy baskets - based on a mantra I'd heard/read once: "If everything has a PLACE to be put, it's easier to clean/tidy up!"
So there's toy baskets for the kids, shoe baskets for all of us, baskets on the stairs for crap that's supposed to go up to the bedrooms, baskets on the foyer table for keys & tchotchkes...
On bed making:
behd may-king? what's that?!?!
Personal motto/mantra:
I wish I could tell my younger self:
to enjoy the solitary minutes/hours/days of undisturbed reading and piano time! LOL

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Rockin' and Reading....

2017 Reading Challenge update (I was going to try my best to post weekly, to avoid monolithic posts having to catch up, but then I realized it's already been two weeks since my last reading check-in... ack!)

#8. The Fiery Cross by Diana Gabaldon (#5 in Outlander Series)       Cat: 24/40: book set in the wilderness           fin. Mar. 1st
1,443 pages you guys... these books are E.P.I.C... it took me 10 days to read this book... that's 140 pages a day, between work lunches and before bed...
I can't say enough about these books... except - they're so gargantuan, I feel like I need a break after every one! (plus it helps to remember what happened in each book, as opposed to them all running together if I were to read them back to back to back.... lol)

#9. The Bookseller by Cynthia Swanson      Cat: 29/40: book with an unreliable narrator        fin. Mar. 3rd
I feel like this book could have had a better OMG WAIT WHAT?! moment, kind of a la Shutter Island (spoiler?? lol) but it was still pretty neat...
A single woman in her late 30's (the unreliable narrator!) begins to dream of an alternate life - marriage with 3 children and the house and station wagon to go with it...
...but then the dreams overcome her real life - and she begins to lose hold of which world is real! (pretty cool story line!)

#10. The Grown-Up by Gillian Flynn       (BONUS) Cat: 47/52: book with an eccentric character       fin Mar. 3rd
As you can see by the finish dates of the previous book and this one, I read this short story in a single day (didn't realize it was a short story until after I'd paid for it and downloaded. ugh) but I love Gillian Flynn and so sped through this book about a scam artist / hooker (hand jobs only!) who tries to bilk a woman out of money to "cleanse" her haunted house... reading this reminded why I don't like short stories - I want more to it! What happens next?!

#11. Zoo #2 by James Patterson, Max DiLallo         Cat: 8/40: book with multiple authors            fin Mar. 4th
Just as I was about to write this off for being able to apply a Reading Challenge category, I noticed the two authors!
A sequel to Zoo (which I read last year): it's a continuation (and it appears, with the cliffhanger ending, that there's a third coming at some point?) of the HumanAnimalConflict (or HAC) - where short wave signals (or cell phone signals or something like that) are short-wiring the pheromones received by animals, turning them into feral & ferocious attacking beasts (everything from mice to polar bears to domestic animals!)
it's pretty short at 145 pages, but a fun read...)

As for my currently reading:
The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern

And I've just recently been turned onto BookBub which sends emails and highlights e-book sales going on that week, and I went a little crazy... I just went to my Nook (B&N) library and saw "15 NEW!"
(speaking of - I just got today's email, and added another four..... aiy aiy aiy)

oops...   hope they all fit into categories!

Monday, March 6, 2017

Right Now

I don't know if you any of you know of Ryan Star, but he sings a song called Right Now that immediately got stuck in my head when I saw this post title on another blog...

Yesterday is history,
Tomorrow may not come.
I'm gonna run to the horizon,
We are strong,
We are young.
I'm gonna lay on the ground,
Feel the rain that's coming down.
And there's nothing anyone,
Could do or say to bring me down.
Right now..
Right now
All we ever have is right now,
And all we'll ever need is here, right now

With that said, on to what's going on, RIGHT NOW:

READING: in the middle of reading The Night Circus (during work lunches, in the hour of mental twilight before bed each night) and blogs (during the day at work when I need a quick mental break)

WATCHING: Not a ton - I've given up on The Walking Dead, although hubby still watches... I'm only 1-2 episodes behind on This Is Us.  I'm caught up and re-watching some of Outlander on Starz

LISTENING: to the silence and the clicking of keys in my office. I think sometimes I need to put music on, but then - the first thing I miss when I get home with the kids is the SILENCE =P

DRINKING: coffee. and water. (water needed after 3+ beers during a fun day yesterday at a hockey game with Button! He ate whatever he wanted (popcorn, pretzels, (water) and Rita's water ice) and then made it on the Jumbo-Tron!)
EATING: just finished blueberry Belvita bars... that and a banana make up my healthy breakfast. lol

WEARING: tights (because. 20 degrees. brrrr) and a pencil skirt, and my comfy oversized sweater...

LOVING: that Ms. Mack is feeling better and seemingly back to almost 100% after a tummy-bug (threw up last Wednesday at daycare, was "out sick" Thursday and had to seemed to "solidify" again (yes, I'm talking about her poop... lol), then was leaky and liquidy (blech) on Friday (we'd decided to keep her out again) and was living on bananas, bread, cheerios and pedialyte...)
 but by yesterday, her appetite had returned and she was well enough to laugh and play with her babysitter while we were at the hockey game =)

ANTICIPATING: this weekend - my parents are flying into Hartford tomorrow, and will be staying with us from (I think) Thursday through the weekend!! Can't wait to see them!!!!

HOPING: for a chance to go snowboarding with two best girlfriends before it gets too warm! The mountain's already decided to close during the week in order to save money! =\

FOLLOWING: as always, The Dump and his circus administration... and to balance that, following the Outlander actors (ok mostly just one) as they head to South Africa to continue filming for season three, airing in September!

WONDERING: how the talk went between my dad and my sister - she's separated from her husband, but has not even filed divorce papers yet (they split last summer) and she's been shacked up and dating this guy (a friend of her husband's.... -_-) for months, and they were going to come down to NJ to visit this weekend when the parental units are here, except - we didn't want her new boyfriend here, and wondered how to say no to her asking if she could bring him...
So Dad was going to have a conversation with her last night... and I'm really wondering how that went...

TRYING: to stay focused at work... so far, I've bought Lia Sophia jewelry (that I didn't really need, but at like, HUGELY INSANE discount prices because  outlet is closing! YOU'RE WELCOME!) and written this blog... (ok, and done a bit of work...)

WORRYING: about.... well. I guess it's a good thing I don't have much to put here, except - worrying about if my FIL will agree to go in with us on a neighboring house down the shore... and whether my job will be here in 6 months (oiy. a whole can of worms, that line of thought/story - but Eric has no doubt that I'll be fine and quickly find something else if I need/want to...)

PLANNING: for new tattoos! I'd like to cover up a small script on my right foot that just blurred and faded and is totally illegible - will probably cover with some kind of feathers... and then I want to re-tat that script somewhere else (bigger): "La vie est belle" (life is beautiful)
and then I want my Ms. Mack tattoo (to go with Button's!) - still need to design what hers is going to be! ((and whether I want to add the fourth little black bird to more accurately represent our current family... I guess it'll lose the "One in Four" visual representation, but it still depicts the "bird" too beautiful to stay... <3 ))

CONTEMPLATING: when is the best time to ask for Friday off from work so I can entertain/hang with my parents! (Another reason I should get focused - get a lot of work done, then how can I be denied a day off this Friday? After showing such dedication last Thursday and Friday, still coming to work (with a not-feeling-well toddler) and getting shit done?!)

Monday, February 27, 2017

Messages from The Universe

This is what I was buying when chaos erupted all around me...

I was buying a $43 face cream that, had I not drank two Blueberry Ginger Smashes earlier at lunch, I would have realized how frivolous it was to spend almost fifty dollars on a face cream...
But I discovered it a few years ago, back when it still only cost $34, and so I bought both this cream and the heavier thicker "winter cream" for myself - a big splurge...
I'm not usually one to 'drink the koolaid' and think that only the most expensive creams and serums work - but - this one was pure heaven!

And why not buy it? I was walking past the Origins counter in Macy's on my way out, it was kismet that I own this cream again! (Except then I found out inflation drove the cost up 10% and then the Blueberry Ginger Smashes made me want to be all bougie and drop almost $50 on a face cream...)

And really, it all started out of the goodness of our hearts - this trip to the mall...

It began with an innocent mom, nursing her baby (under a cover!) recently, and an old senile crotchety (probably not, but in my mind he is) security guard telling her, "You can't do that here ma'am! People are SHOPPING here!" and supposedly stood over here while she unlatched her crying baby to pack up and leave...


Indignation within our little support group online!

A nurse-in was called for, and then unscheduled because the original mom was - embarassed? non-confrontational? - and so my tribe and I headed to lunch and an informal stand-up for our rights: after reminiscing over drinks about where we were a year ago, we parked ourselves in the middle of the busy mall and latched our one-year-olds on - we dared anyone to say something! (It was all quite anticlimactic - we latched, unlatched, relatched - and nary a word... maybe a quick sidelong glance from a man walking by - but we were all pros with our double layered tanks and tees to cover those sexy boobs...)

We took our nursing brelfie (we sure showed those security guards!), said our farewells, and parted - one mom heading out through Sears, one mom heading to meet her husband at the food court, and one mom (me) heading out through Macy's, only to be distracted by the Origins counter and that damn expensive face cream...

I was no more than ten steps away from the counter, having done due diligence to save the environment by getting my receipt e-mailed to me as I tucked my priceless (but really - everything has a price) jar of money face cream heaven into the diaper bag, when - like I said, chaos erupted...

The entrance from Macy's to the general mall was on my left, the way to the mens' department in front of me (specifically the cologne and after shave - I had marked my way in earlier through mental breadcrumbs - to leave, go back the way you came - straight through the tantalizing make-up counters, bang a left before you reach shoes (do NOT STOP to shop the shoes!) and straight on past colognes!

So it was with the Origins counter to my back and the mens' department up ahead, that a flood of people poured into Macy's from the mall entrance on my left...

Your brain begins processing information (perceived by one of the five senses, in this case sight...) by first transforming the physical stimuli into electrochemical signals.  Once information is processed to a degree, an attention filter decides how important the signal is and which cognitive processes it should be made available to. In order for the signals and information to be processed, the brain first must encode and store it, and there are even types of encoding specific to each type of sensory stimuli.
(above info pulled from this site)

I couldn't even begin to guess how many nano-seconds it took for my brain to process what my eyes were seeing, but I'm going to go with FAST.

Probably before my brain could even register that people were running, and begin to wonder why people might be running - what they might be running from - I had grabbed the stroller and joined the throng - shoving and clipping heels (poor woman - I think I probably wore off the skin, I hit her so many times...)

I think the reader's mind will jump to the same assumption that I did - that there was a shooter somewhere in the mall.

Later, E asked me if I had just grabbed Ms. Mack from the stroller - which, to be honest, hadn't even crossed my mind.  The only thought I had - which was probably a reflection of the words being shouted and pleaded from around me - were, MOVE! and GO GO GO!

It was by the last cologne stand, just a few feet from the exit doors, that I clipped the poor woman's heels one last time, and we burst into the parking lot.  I couldn't even tell you what everyone else did, but without even orienting myself, I didn't stop moving - didn't pause for breathe - until we were shielded in between rows of parked cars.  I glanced around to locate where I'd parked, and darted through the lot to the next row of cars - the next safe spot of cover - to pause and make sure I had my car keys out and ready.

And then I was at my car, eyes flickering back to the mall exit, not even registering what other people were doing - hovering at the exit, leering bystanders? or sprinting still to their cars?
A couple was standing in the lot as I neared my car, and the woman said, somewhat calmly, "do you know what's happening?"
And I pointed my eyes to my precious-cargo-laden stroller, all the while still moving - getting the car unlocked, unhooking the stroller straps, willing my fingers to stop shaking, and I said, "I have no clue.  I honestly just RAN..."

I got 2 out of 3 clips secured on Ms. Mack's car seat, and the stroller laid across her seat and Button's empty seat, and I decided she'd be safe enough - I had to get out of that parking lot NOW... apparently everyone else fleeing had the same thought, as it took a number of minutes to leave.
Surprisingly, civility still reigned - even though people were cramming their car nose in where they could to get through the throng, they still sat at red lights and waited for the OK to go...

As I sat there, eyes still flitting to the mall and back to the cars in front of me (NO ONE was cutting in front of me to get outta here!!!!) my heart thundered out of my chest, breathe racing so fast that my tongue began to stick to the roof of my dry mouth.  I had to make sure my tribe was ok - the mom who went through Sears and the mom who had gone to the food court.

Quick messages with the food court mom revealed she had come into Macy's as well with her husband, and was in fact at the Starbucks counter, which neighbored the Origins one, and they too ran with the crowd to an exit.

I began crying, waiting to get clear of the congestion and hit open space to drive out of there.  I finally got to the highway, and I called the mom that went through Sears, praying she hadn't decided to stop anywhere - she hadn't, was in fact unaware of anything that had happened.

I realized I needed to call E, news may be hitting the airwaves/social media and he'd freak, knowing we were at That Mall.

I don't remember the drive home at all, but I remember blurting out as soon as he answered that Ms. Mack and I were in the car, we were ok, but - "I think there was just now a shooting at the mall as we left..."

I can still remember the tone of his voice, his shocked "WHAT?!" that he blurted out in the doctor's office years ago right after I'd told him there was no longer a heartbeat to our precious first pregnancy.

It was the same exact word and tone I got back over the blue tooth speakers as I drove on autopilot, reaching back to touch Ms. Mack every few minutes, maybe to reassure myself she was there and alright (and she was - she was trying to nap, and I kept startling her awake each time I reached back... sorry, baby...)

My in-laws were over for dinner, and E updated them in bullet points as I gave him information over the phone.  They immediately turned the news on, but nothing was scrolling across the screen related to the local shopping mall.

I walked into the house with a sleepy Ms. Mack, and started to cry again on E's shoulder, not knowing what I escaped, but only knowing the fear - what I saw in other faces as they ran into Macy's, what surely must have been on my face as I careened the stroller, sometimes on only one wheel around corners and shoes.

Once stored, memories eventually must be retrieved from storage. Remembering past events is not like watching a recorded video. It is, rather, a process of reconstructing what may have happened based on the details the brain chose to store and was able to recall.(source)

As I retold the tale, taking more time in the retelling than the actual events, I recalled thinking, amidst the stampede, that this must be what it's like to go running with the bulls in Spain... colliding into walls, other people, the whites of eyes showing, not entirely sure what you're running from - but that it's time to RUN...

Recall (of memories) is triggered by a retrieval cue, an environmental stimulus that prompts the brain to retrieve the memory. Evidence shows that the better the retrieval cue, the higher the chance of recalling the memory.(source)

The feeling of running with the bulls is probably my retrieval cue - that's the only feeling I can clearly remember from the first few seconds I spent picking up speed through Macy's... And there can be memory distortions, of course - did I really remember hearing a pop or loud bang? Or is that memory influenced by the messages on my phone screen with eight heart-dropping letters:

Because, in fact - there were apparently never any shots fired...

As the dust figuratively continued to settle this morning, as the local news stations began to give the story a few minutes of air time, it seems chaos began in the food court where teenagers (two? two seperate incidents?) broke into a vicious fight.  A video that made its way to the surface this morning shows chairs being thrown, big heavy wooden chairs with metal legs and arms - what some witnesses would claim made the loud bangs that others claimed they heard as gunfire.

In one telling, an off-duty policeman pulled a gun - perhaps (probably) as a "CUT THIS SHIT RIGHT NOW" tactic against the teens.  Of course, you have commenters on social media nagging that the news stations "use fear tactics, they make everything seem so scary and blow things out of proportion - it was a FIGHT at the food court!"

I normally don't waste a minute of my time even considering a response, but on a local mom's group I had to - I had to comment that it was scary as SHIT running with your toddler, fear building as the fleeing crowd grew larger and larger.  The media had NOTHING to do with that fear...

Because if I had to pick one word to describe things, it would be fear.

Yesterday afternoon was probably the most terrified I have ever been, racing through, no racing WITH the crowd with a stroller - breathing so hard that I couldn't stop coughing later at home, that this morning I was a bit hoarse...

This morning, I took my $45 face cream out of the bag that had been forgotten upon my return home.  The money didn't even bother me any more - I set the box on the counter and looked at it, and said a prayer of thanks.

I'm thankful that Ms. Mack and I were ok (she was giggling and laughing with Nana and Pops as soon as she got home yesterday).

I'm thankful that no one at the mall was hurt (aside from a few very minor injuries due to the rushing of the crowds), and that "it was nothing" after all.

I know that if it hadn't been nothing, I would be so much more shaken - it would be the bone-jarring realization of I escaped death, not just the Wow, I've never felt fear like that - but we're ok...

But things quickly settled back down to regular life - the inlaws played with the kids, E had dinner ready (god bless the man) and after baths and bedtime, I enjoyed a few hours of watching the fabulous fashion of The Oscars.

I even got slightly annoyed when Button woke up at 1:30 last night, shivering with no blankets and soaking wet - E had forgotten to put a diaper on him before he put Button to bed.  And of course, who had to get up and wipe down a shivering little boy, change PJs and sheets and scramble for a clean blanket, only to find my robe (after removing the belt) for Button...

But I was quick to take stock of the situation - it was just 30-45 minutes less of sleep than I would have gotten, and that can be fixed - quite easily - with coffee. (I mean, how many nights had I stayed up WAY past my bedtime to watch just ONE MORE EPISODE of Outlander?!)

So here come the cliches:

Life is too short to waste your energy complaining about how your fBFF wanted you to take pictures of her son's baptism - FOR FREE - after wanting to charge $15 for chocolate covered oreos at Ms. Mack's birthday party. (seriously.  I'm not holding a grudge or anything. lol)

Life is too short to spend time angry that your husband didn't get the kids from daycare on Friday until almost 6pm (I was working late because he was home to get them at 5pm!) because, most likely, he was working on some computer project and wanted to finish up...

Life is too short to worry about wrinkles on your face (yes, I considered Botox - am still considering?? Botox. blugh  maybe life isn't too short for Botox... lol)


The whole Oscars gaffe where LaLaLand was named as Best Picture, but totally wasn't the winner?!

There's bigger fish to fry!

(But how salacious?!)

And with that - it's 3:33pm.  And my yoga instructor always says when you see things like repeating numbers, it's the universe sending good vibes... or something like that... and repeating THREE'S?

Apparently that's like GoodVibeGold.

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