Sunday, January 31, 2010

Who Put Mustard on My Chair?

Back at Orchestra rehearsal in my favorite mustardy-colored plastic cafeteria chair all ready to blog about the week in review. So let's start with Monday, the day hubs took off on a business trip to Denver while the peeps and I carried on with life as usual. Well, life wasn't exactly usual if you consider the fact that our cello playing peep was scheduled to perform in a BIG HUGE orchestra festival that evening, the same night that involved monstrously powerful freezing winds that I had to fight while commuting to and from the performance site. And what exactly made the festival so BIG and HUGE? Basically, orchestras from all of the school district's high schools and middle schools combined themselves to perform several pieces together, and they were nothing less than STUPENDOUS. In fact, they were so amazing that I'm posting a favorite video at the bottom of this blog. (A-MA-ZING, no?)

On with regular IT consulting work and school activities then to teaching religious education where the CCD'ers talked me into rescheduling our previously canceled Christmas party to next week, because they were completely gypped of partying when blizzards forced everyone to stay home after schools shut down. Those poor kids, I know! So my co-catechist got right on it and called all of the parents, bless her heart, and now we're back in the business of having the most exciting belated Christmas party ever experienced in the land of religious education. Hopefully, that is. *fingers crossed*

Finally we reached the end of the week, Salon Day Friday, where I parked myself in the salon chair while Diva Stylist Woman worked her magic on me. But wait! Not only did she clean me up, but together the two of us made a plan for transitioning toward a new longer length 'do, because while I'm totally in love with this new shorter look she has going on for me, I'm so not in love with burning myself while attempting to flat-iron those crazy hard-to-reach short sections located directly at the nape of my neck. I mean, I'm talking actual scars on my hands from this torturous process! Anyway, being the professional that she is, Diva Stylist Woman knows exactly what to do and has me on the fast track to Longer Hair by Summer. Love that woman.

So then along came Saturday, when Cellist Peep and I found ourselves at the funkiest orchestra retreat ever experienced, complete with a highly decorated guest conductor, loads of snacks, and free wi fi for parents to waste a little bit of time on social networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter. Can you say spoiled rotten with food, fun and free internet? All this as the guys hung out at home watching basketball on ESPN while shooting a few rounds of their own (Nerf Hoop-style), a total win-win afternoon for everyone involved.

What's next? Here's what I'm seeing on the calendar, not that events listed on the calendar always take place according to plan, but let's give it a whirl: Haircut for the youngest peep, a couple of middle school field trips, and someone taking the ACT 4 years early. *channeling scholarships here*

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Gimping Along

Back to my famous Orchestra Mom Chair where I can finally wrap my head around last week's events by posting a blog about it all. So where to start? How about Monday... oh yes, Martin Luther King Day when the kids enjoyed a day off from school and spent the entire day lounging in their pajamas while getting reacquainted with the video games they received over Christmas break. The holiday was like Déjà vu all over again, MLK-style. Meanwhile, I spent a good chunk of time cleaning up the aftermath of that big birthday party we threw the previous weekend, cleaning that is still in progress. Can you say maid service needed?

And now for the biggest news of the week: Face-to-face meeting with a potential new client who discovered my business by way of Better Business Bureau - a HUGE deal for me as a fairly new BBB accredited business member. So guess what? I left the meeting with the impression that we hit it off fabulously, and I even submitted a bid for one of their web projects the very same day. Needless to say, I'm feeling hopeful about adding them as a new client soon - knock on wood. Speaking of which, I also reconnected with another new client, a cancer patient, who has regained enough strength to move forward with his web plans. More on that within the next few weeks. *insert happy dance here*

On the Religious Education front, in addition to our regular class time I had the honor of taking part in a 7th grade Confirmation retreat with my lovely CCD students. Let me tell you, the retreat was nothing less than magical with @100 kids and catechists participating in prayer-related activities. We read scripture, meditated, discussed the many forms of prayer, hammered nails into crosses, casted stones, created collages, etc. Who would've thought 7th graders could encounter Jesus alongside friends as their cell phones were being held hostage outside the retreat center? Not me, as I imagined myself at that age grudgingly attending because I had to and rolling my eyes all the while. But not those kids. The maturity factor was surprisingly ginormous, and I'm still left in awe of what I witnessed that night. BRAV-O.

Last but certainly not least on my Must Blog About list is that dreaded muscle strain report. If you've been bravely following my Facebook &/or Twitter status posts then you know how on January 3rd, I crazily submitted myself to an overly strenuous Wii EA Active and elliptical workout that resulted in a painful hip flexor injury that I've been nursing ever since. Holy smokes did that episode ever put a damper on my everyday getting around, not to mention those interrupted nights of sleep! So I've been resting as much as possible (not very in my case) and am finally able to get around a little more quickly. As I mentioned to a Facebook friend, ibuprofen is my new BFF and has been my saving grace during this way-too-long healing process. And now I'm happy to report that I was able to get back into my workout routine (light!) yesterday. Alleluia.

So what's happening next? In a nutshell, another week of complete madness with an orchestra festival and retreat on the agenda. Only here's the good part in two little words:

*repeat of happy dance here*

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Who Hid Mom's Chocolate?

No escape from the Heartland of America this week, but that's not to say I'm no longer considering a permanent visit to San Diego, Portland and/or Cocoa Beach. Instead, celebrating our youngest peep's birthday ensued, complete with eating out at Famous Dave's (saucey amazingness!) and partying it up at home with friends (pizza, cake, ice cream, Wii games, Nerf darts & tackle football). Even I must admit that this year's birthday was most definitely a birthday to remember, at least until we outdo ourselves next year. Or try, anyway. Let's be optimistic here.

Behind the scenes of all this celebration madness, our oldest peep, the cellist, found herself in search of a full size cello to replace the ¾ cello she has outgrown, something that seems so odd when I can vividly remember when the ½ size one was taller than HER. Anyway, to do this, she recruited Mom (yes, me) to make a litany of phone calls in search of said replacement and to schedule actual cello viewings with her private cello teacher at local music stores. Who would've thought we'd be running all over tarnation in search of a simple cello replacement? Yeah well, unfortunately our search came up short, so that particular item remains on the 'To Do' list for yet another week, month, *insert random time frame here*.

Calendar check time - hey, cool! Another school day off for the peeps so that they might take some quality time to properly celebrate Martin Luther King Day by playing video games in their pajamas and building snow creatures outside for me to photograph from the window, mostly because I don't own long underwear or snow pants and would much rather stay inside where it's not FREEZING COLD. Makes total sense to me, but there I go digressing again.

Uh oh... wait, here's the not-so-cool thing on our calendar for the week: CCD Retreats. Will be getting back to you on that one. Lordy.

And now here's a birthday blooper just for fun:

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Escape from Snow Mountain

So it's 2010 and we're just now returning back to life as we knew it before the Snowstorm of the Century smacked us into the new year. And yet lo and behold, several snow days and a holiday break later, here I sit back in my Orchestra Mom Chair on Principle Stand Audition Day. So what does that mean exactly? It means parents get reacquainted with one another and our electronics while string players interested in having a “star by their names on the program” try out for that TOP CHAIR in performances, also known as the famous Seat Closest to the Conductor. (As I send a thumbs up sign to cellist peep as she heads off to her audition – Break a leg, girlie!)

The week ahead... wow, flashback to 11 years ago when I was 41 weeks pregnant with our youngest who had absolutely NO intention of arriving on time. But then Dr. M induced labor on January 11th and our feisty-spark-plug-of-a-son blessed us with his presence the very next day. That son of ours hit the ground running from the get-go and hasn't stopped since. So what to do? Throw a smashingly ginormous birthday party to celebrate the occasion, complete with Wii games, Nerf darts, air hockey, snow football, pizza, cake, ice cream, presents – all shared with a few of his favorite dude friends.

The party is so ON.
(more on that during my next blog installment)

In the meantime on a personal note (as if this blog isn't all about personal notes, right?), I am now accepting nominations for relocation ideas. After all of this cold/snow/BLIZZARD activity that we've been experiencing over the past couple of months, I've completely had it with this weather that is so not for me. It stifles my creativity and ices me over like some sort of human skating rink. I crawl into bed and never want to get out. It sucks the spunk right out of me, morphing me into this zombie-like creature that I don't even recognize. For these reasons, I need a new place to hang. If anything, a spot for daydreaming purposes to yank me out of this cold weather funk.

Although some potential winners already come to mind, I'd seriously consider any others in addition to these:

Portland, Oregon
Southern California - SAN DIEGO
New Bern, North Carolina
Fort Walton Beach, Florida
Cocoa Beach, Florida
Santa Fe, New Mexico
Rome, Italy
Venice, Italy
French Riviera
... your nomination here.

Monday, January 4, 2010

2 Days Left

With only 2 days left of peeps home for Christmas break, yes, I'm getting antsy. Or how about anxious-to-reclaim-what-was-once-organized-chaos? Now that's more like it! So what's a mom to do while waiting for that blessed day of sending peeps back to school? Here's what - get an online signature:

or this:

or maybe:

Decisions, decisions... I'm going with the last one.

UPDATE - We have a winner, as voted by the Peepstead: