Thursday, February 6, 2014

You Do Your Own Taxes?

[Also considered as titles:  Talking with Turbo Tax, Who Needs an Accountant, and Where the Hell are my Forms?]

It's mid January and I have accumulated all of my necessary paperwork by either downloading it from the source or waiting for the mail.  I have decided on Turbo Tax Premier because we had some stock stuff and the sale of our home.  

You file your own taxes?  The question I hear most often.  Really?  There are accountants for that.  Yeah.  I know.  But it's not that hard......  Really? Really.

Working with Turbo Tax is a little like having a conversation with your best friend.  Only she doesn't look like the girl on the screen making the tsk tsk face at me when I try to file.  But that's a whole separate issue I will discuss later.  Working through Turbo Tax is a little like this:

Turbo Tax: Heyyyyyyy BFF!  Welcome back!  Thanks for buying me again!  Luckily you haven't bought a new computer in a bunch of years so all your old returns are filed away on here.  Do you want me to transfer over your information from years past?

Me:  Yeah great.  Thanks.

TT:  Okee.  Let's see.  You want me to walk you through this or do you think you can put on your big girl panties and do it yourself this year?

Me:  Walk me through it TT. I can't risk a mistake.  

TT:  K.  I've got this.  So did you move?

Me:  Yeah here's my new address.

TT:  Great.  We'll talk about your house later.  Right now let's talk about your kids.  You still got 3?

Me:  Yep.  Same 3. Wonder if I can get any extra cash for Hallie because she was a surprise....  you know.  There should be some benefit to that.

TT:  Nope.  No benefit.  But it has been 5 years.  Are you sure there aren't more dependents you should claim?  You have a history, ya know.  

Me:  Nope.  Everything's the same.

TT:  Awesome.  Let's move on then.  Do you have your shit together from your employer?  If not, I can probably get it for you.

Me:  Seriously?  Thanks!

TT:  Wait no.  Sorry.  Can't get yours.  

Me:  That's ok.  We got it.  

TT:  Awesome.  Looks like you made about the same amount as last year.  Too bad for you. Wait 'til you find out this year you have to pay a lot of AMT and you underpaid your Obamacare.  I mean Medicare.  

Me: Whaaaa?

TT:  [interrupts] I saw you moved.  Did you sell your other house?

Me:  Yes.  [peeks through split fingers]

TT:  K.  How much did you sell it for?

Me:  A lot.  (We love our neighbors)

TT:  Great.  How much did you pay for it?

Me:  Not a lot.  Whyyyyy?

TT:  Just asking.  Did you make any improvements?

Me:  Yes a ton.  [enters low ball figure of improvements even though it was a lot more]

TT:  Ouch.  You're good.  You took a pretty big loss on the house.  Dumbass.  Should have held out for more.  Why did you move again?

Me:  Enough already.  I don't need your 2 cents.  Well actually I do but I see you're rounding to the nearest .00 in your favor...  Anyhow, where do I report this?

TT:  Oh, the IRS would rather you didn't report it.  It kind of clutters their desk.

Me:  Seriously?  I want to report everything.

TT:  No.  It's cool.  They don't want to see your losses.  They don't care that you lost any money.  Silly girl.  Moving on ..... you sell any stocks or get any money gambling or other crap like that?  (Crap.  Noun.  Money you put into your bank that you were hoping you didn't have to tell anyone about.) 

Me:  Yeah.  Sold some stocks because we had to but only made $36 on that deal.

TT:  Bummer.  Still have to report it because they will and you know.  Every penny counts.  

Me:  Right.  Every penny.  That's why you're rounding right?  

TT:  Ignoring that because I sense your irritation.  OK, right now it looks scary like you owe some money over there on the top left but no worries, imma gonna make sure we get that into the green.  Ready for me to walk you through that?

Me:  Absolutely.  

TT:  Lets talk about your property taxes and mortgage interest.  Wow.  That's a big deduction.  

Me:  Happy to see that green finally.  *clinks computer screen*

TT:  Want to deduct anything else?  Last few years you had some pretty big charity contributions.  Want to claim those?  

Me:  Can't find receipts so nah.

TT:  How about Good Will?  Last year you donated to them.

Me:  Sure, I'll take the standard $500 even though we all know it was like $5000 but it's an audit risk over $500.  

TT:  Oh funny girl.  This year is a little different.  I need you to enter Every.  Single.  Item.  Line by line, dollar by dollar, using this garage sale calculator.

Me:  I had no donations to Good Will this year.

TT:  You just said you did.  I'm trying to help you.

Me:  It's not worth it.  Next year I won't waste my time donating.... Way to keep people interested in giving.

TT:  Hey, don't blame me.  Are you done entering everything?  

Me:  I think yeah.  Thanks.  

TT:  Perfect.  Let's review shall we?  And do an error check?

Me:  That'd be great.  Thanks.

TT:  kk

TT:  You might want to look this over.  And this.  [fixes errors]  You're good to go!  Ready to file?

Me:  Hell to the yes.  

TT:  Ohhhhhhh shoot.  Guess what?  You can't file yet.  A couple of the forms you need aren't ready.  Sorry about that.  

Me:  Seriously?  Can I just go on without them?

TT:  No.  And don't even try hitting the continue button.  I'll just circle you right back to me.  Right here.  

Me:  [sad face]

TT:  It's not my fault you are STILL WAITING on forms.  Don't shoot the messenger.  We can email you when the forms are ready or you can check back.  Whatevs.

Me:  Ohhhhhhh Turbo tax...... Why are you forsaking me now??? 

TT:  It's really not my fault.  Are we still friends?

Me:  We are.  

Friday, January 17, 2014

My Husband Works from Home

I am going to start a support group for wives whose husbands work from home.  I think we could have weekly lunch meetings where we could discuss the following:

1.  Will I ever vacuum again?
2.  How to keep the dog from barking when he is on a call.  Which is all day.  So basically 'How to keep the dog from barking.  Ever.'
3.  Yes I have lunch plans that don't include you.
4.  The washing machine .... Friend or foe?
5.  Inopportune times for the garbage disposal to make that awful noise like it's chopping up beer bottle tops.  (Because it is)
6.  What "beer thirty" means for moms.  (See 5)
7.  No, a nooner is not exercise.
8.  Yes, this IS what I do all day.
9.  Yes, I do miss you when you travel.  (This is the code name topic for "How to pretend you miss him when he travels when really you are happy to have the house to yourself")

The last time my husband went out of town I moved furniture, unpacked boxes (finally), built a dresser and set up an office.  I also cleaned the house like Rosa had been here.  (Rosa is the best cleaning lady in the south.  I love her.)

Now he is working in the office, doors open, on calls, so I tiptoe around afraid to make any noise for fear my loud slippers swish swishing on the floor will make that big deal go bad.

I am actually thankful to have a husband who 1) has a good job and 2) is around.  There are times between calls when a mirror needs to be hung or a kid needs to be picked up from the school early because of a tummy ache and I am stuck at Target.

Target.  Number 10.  Why Target is like a little slice of heaven.  Especially if they have a Starbucks when you first walk in.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

25 Things About Me .....

As most people already know, I love to write.  I love to write blog posts (in my head mostly) ... I love to write posts and comments on Facebook.  I love to do research and enter into debates -- as long as it is in writing.  I'm not great in person.  Quick wit, sure.  So when Dear Abby died (may she rest in peace), it inspired me to start asking people to submit to me their "Dear Abby" questions.  So fun and funny.  So I suggest to our local magazine that we have a column like this.  And I suggest I should write it.  I mean *I* know I'm funny.  [This reminds me of the time I was with a bunch of friends holding one of those mini cans of diet coke and I was all like "Oh my God ... what happened to my hand ... why is it so big?" and we all started laughing and I couldn't stop and my friend said "Are you seriously laughing at your own joke?" and I was all like "Um yeah, it was really funny." Or this other time .. ha ha ... that I wrote .. ah ha ha ... oh wait - totally not PC.  Can't share.]

Anyhow ...

So the magazine asks me to submit writing samples.  [!!!!!!]  "Some" writing samples.  *bites nails*  I solicit some friends for advice because they all know what I *want* to write is a parenting advice book or column called "He Won't Wear Diapers to Prom."  (Don't steal that.  I will be pissed.)  Well, of course, I will submit some of the Dear Abby samples because they were good (pats self on back) but then I needed the "some" of the writing samples.  So I went to my blog and tried to pick a selection of ones I thought were funny and sweet to show my "range" of writing.  After a lengthy debate and google search on how many is "some," I chose these four:  

Ok, none of those are the real names.  Just alternate names, if I could rename them.

Picking samples of my writing was a lot harder than I thought it would be.  What are they looking for?  Is my spelling/grammar correct?  Should I edit the language before I send (I did) ...  When I write for me, it's easy ... when thinking about writing for someone else, it gets hard.  Then I thought I would only want to write IF I was writing for me in my style so I picked four, attached to an e-mail and hit send.  *fingers crossed*  Hope they like ME.

So I sent them to a friend letting him/her know which ones I chose and he/she said I should have included my list from Facebook's 25 Things About Me that I wrote back in 2009.  I had forgotten about that and it was too late, but in 4 years my life has changed a lot AND not at all, too.  So I thought I'd share that list here making current changes in red.  Even funnier are some of the comments below but you'll have to see those on Facebook.

25 Random Things About Me

by Tami Knitter Walsh on Saturday, January 31, 2009 at 8:30am ·
1. I am a procrastinator which is why it took so long to do this.
[I wonder when I was *supposed* to have done this]
2. I am also of the mindset that it is easier to ask for forgiveness than permission.
[Unless you are my kid]
3. Chocolate and ice cream make me feel like I am going to barf.
[Still.  Is this something I need to have taken care of by a DR?  See 42.]
4. I hate doing laundry. Well, I hate putting laundry away.
[Now I have little people that put their own laundry away]
5. We have lived off piles of laundry for about a month. (I put it away last night)
[I am better about this AND I didn't need therapy to get better about this.]
6. I married someone who hates living off piles of laundry.
[Still true.]
6 1/2. I wonder why the hell he can't put the laundry away.
[He has gotten better about this.  We are still married.]
7. I have really enjoyed catching up with old friends from high school and college on facebook. It has brought back a lot of really good memories and made me feel young.
[Also, it has made me question why we weren't better friends in the first place - wasted years of a lot of fun!]
8. In high school I was never really part of a clique but love that because of that I have lots of good friends from those days.
[Yes.  Very true.]
9. I was a Gamma Phi Beta in college and my best friends were Pikes. I did NOT sleep with [*most of*] them. 
[I stand by this story.]
10. I caught a boyfriend having sex with another girl in college. [That was fun]
[I still hate that b*tch.]
11. I was engaged twice, married once.
[As long as he keeps putting his laundry away, this will not be a problem.]
12. My husband and I never fight.
[Unless he asks me to create a spreadsheet.  Then I am calling lawyers.]
13. I think I am fat.
[Ha.  This was 15 pounds ago.  Please.  Now I really am fat.]
14. I do NOT want another baby. (Really this time, OK?) But I do sometimes wish Hallie were twins because she is so good and cute and fluffy and fun and it would be nice to have an even number. (OCD)
[Thank God Hallie was not twins.]
15. I love being at the beach with my kids. I see no point in the pool when you are on vacation.
[I still believe this.  I also have a kick ass pool with waterslide in my neighborhood which is 10 times nicer than most pools at the beach.]
16. If you say "bless your heart" to me, I know you are pretty much telling me to go screw myself.
[I still believe this, too .....]
17. I am a yankee and we won. Get over it.
[Ahhhh ... the war of northern aggression.  Sweet, sweet topic down here.]
18. 4th grade science is hard and I am struggling. I flunked my last test.  
[I wish someone would have prepared me for middle school science.  Now we have a tutor.  I gave up.]
19. I have made a really good group of friends online through a birth board who have helped me so much through my pregnancy and infant and I love these women. We talk online every day and have for over a year.
[There are still a handful of us that talk almost daily.  I love these girls.  I hope they are real.]
20. My husband is my best friend.
21. I did NOT vote for Obama.
22. I have a small crush on Bill O'Reilly and he might be my "free pass."
[OK .....  Might need to switch this to Glenn Beck.]
23. I kinda like Ann Coulter. *ducking*
[Where has she been?]
24. I love heated political debates.
[I also figured out heated political debates cause me stress so I try (TRY) to avoid them now.]
25. I have a hard time saying I'm sorry.
[I'm sorry but this is true.]
26. I love to go out with my friends for drinks..... each friend gives me something the others can not and I love that.
[I miss doing this but I also have become good friends with my DVR because I am too tired for drinks.]
27. I can stay up all night playing cards and drinking and still get up at 7:00 a.m. and feed a baby.
[Oh my God.  Not any more.]
28. I do not have a passport and am scared to leave the US of A. 
[I do have a passport now and it has a stamp in it.]
29. I hope my husband does not make his work trip ("Club") because I do not want to be stranded away from my kids in the middle of the mediterranean sea on a small boat and I know this is unsupportive.
[He did not make that trip - YEA! - but I did have to go to the Bahamas the following year.  Next time I do that I am making sure I have international calling.]
30. I hated living in Michigan.
[The farther removed I am from living in Michigan the more I realize I hated it because it was the first time I moved away from family/friends - and I miss the midwest.]
31. I loved living in WI. I think Milwaukee is one of the best places on earth.
[It really is.  Don't go right now.  It's like -14.]
32. My cat and dog fight all the time - in a playful way - and I was surprised to hear this wasn't normal.
[My catS and dog.]
33. I have 2 boys who couldn't be more different and I sometimes wonder how they were both born of my womb.
[Still true.  So.  Very.  True.]
34. I love to sit in front of a fireplace. I like the way a fire smells.
[But when I try to get up from the floor I can't walk for like 5 minutes because my knees and back don't work.]
35. I don't like "good beer."
[I am ok with a Platinum - does that count?]
36. Someone told me once that I would "appreciate" red wine when I turned 30. I didn't appreciate it until about 2 months ago and it has been a long time since I turned 30.
[It has been an even longer time since I turned 30.]
37. I am extremely stubborn.
[Who me?]
38. I can (and will) fire off a mean ass e-mail, if I need to do so.
[There is medication that can help this.]
38. I was a nanny for 8 years after college and I loved those kids like my own. 
[One is in college and the other is in law school.  Feels like yesterday I was kicking a neighbor girl out of the yard because she was mean to Taryn.  She was 6.]
39. I am not afraid of getting my identity stolen but I'm not stupid about it either.
[I also don't click shit.  Why is this so hard for people?]
40. The biggest spider I ever killed without a shoe was about the size of a quarter.
[I really don't want to think about this anymore.]
41. I love cookbooks but never use them. I do like to cook.
[Cookbooks are nice decorations.]
42. I never go to the DR unless it is absolutely necessary. I do take my kids as needed.
[I need to schedule my mammogram.]
42 1/2. I don't even have a DR (besides an OB) in Georgia and I have lived here for over 8 years.
[Really need to think about getting a regular DR.  Might be time for one of those physicals people speak of.]
43. I love both my kids teachers this year SO much and am trying to revel in it because I know this will probably never happen again.
[It did happen again.  And I am very lucky.]
44. I need to take a shower today.
[I like to help conserve water.  It's the liberal in me.  That's hard to write without laughing.]
45. I have acrylic nails and only get them done every 6 weeks. LAZY.
[I wish there was a way to grow these bad boys off and go back to real nails.]
46. I think I would like to write a book someday.
[Or a column.  ;o)]
47. I still think my wedding was beautiful.
[I do.  But my eyebrows were big and I probably would have opted for a smaller bouquet.]
48. I can remember sitting on the steps at Gamma Phi looking through Joe Photo's pics and saying out loud, "At least these dresses will always be in style!"
[I can sill remember that.  Good sign I don't have alzheimers, right?]
49. I hated the sleeping arrangements in my sorority house but loved my roomies. 
50. I am not a good rule follower. This is number 50.
[I try and be a good rule follower.  I really do. Lead by example.]
51. I think the SST process is hard and I have learned a lot.
[It gets harder.]
52. I despise Caillou. Really. He makes me shake he is so irritating.
[Funny.  This does not change.]
53. I do not mind Barney. 
[I miss the hour long Christmas Barney.  It was Casey's favorite.  Brings back awesome memories.]
54. I use Pampers.
[Not anymore but maybe one day soon .... a lot changes after you turn 40.]
55. I am the least "crunchy" person you will probably ever meet. That said, someone sent me a sling and I wore my baby. In my house. Alone. About 20 times.
[Then I sent it to a friend because what was next?  Milling my own flour?]
56. I am excited for Parker to play soccer because there is no drama there for me.
[That lasted 2 seasons.  There is also no score keeping in soccer.]
[56 1/2.  I am competitive.]
57. I am excited to get a season off from being team-mom but nervous it is going to get screwed up.
[It didn't get screwed up.]
58. I am a bit of a control freak.
[I need to let some things go.]
59. I miss running the consignment sale sometimes.
[No.  No I don't.]
60. I could stay in my pajamas all day every day and my friends think sweats are my "uniform."
[I like to be comfy ok?]
61. I have to leave the house once every day or I will lose my mind.
[Sometimes I don't leave the house and I am ok with it.]
62. I eat McDonalds.
[I eat McDonald's.]
63. I wish Hallie had hair.
[I wish Hallie would let me brush her hair without screaming.]
64. I miss photography and am getting the itch to start shooting again.
[I am busier than ever.]
65. I do not think you should submerge meat in water in a crock pot. I do think you can't screw anything up in there either.
[I did submerge meat in the crock pot for the first time about a month ago.  I saw no difference.]
66. I hate PDA .... *shudder*
[I mean come on.  Get a room.]
67. HB and I say "I love you" on the phone only when he is about to get on a plane or away on a trip. Other than that we only say it when we mean it, it is not a habit.
[To.  This.  Day.]
68. I sometimes think I want to move into a bigger/nicer house but realize how much I like the way my children are being raised right here....
[I have had this thought process every year since I wrote it the first time.]
69. I do not like 69. I wonder if anyone caught there were two number 38s.
[There were 2 number 38s.]
70. I still don't know what I want to be when I grow up and my mind changes daily.
[I want to be a writer and a photographer.  And a weather girl.  And a child psychologist.  And an arts and crafts teacher.]
71. I can fit in my pre pregnancy jeans but I know they fit me different.
[Oh Lorddddd do they fit me different.]
72. I wonder how many random thoughts I actually have.
[A lot.]
73. Like why do we say owl and howl but bowl is not spelled bole and bowel is not spelled bowl. Makes no sense.
[Or why do we say Ashleigh and sleigh different.]
74. I am abnormally strong for my size.
[I have self diagnosed arthritis.  I am less strong but only in my hands.]
75. I wonder if anyone is actually reading this.
[I wonder if anyone is actually reading this.]

Thursday, November 8, 2012

A NON-PARTISAN BLOG POST - No, I swear, it really is.

Last January I made a resolution to blog once a week.  My passion is writing.  My passion is writing funny stuff that is based on reality.  My reality.  I have been so busy that I have forgotten how to blog - I write them in my head all the time - just never get pen to paper - or fingers to keys since it is actually almost 2013.  Next year.  Next year will be different.  I will try harder.

That said, this past election has inspired me to blog.  Because I have a damn good idea for next time.

So, take the red and blue map away and ignore the square footage of our country.  Let's pretend for a minute that an election is based on what the people want and not the electoral college (insert heavy sigh from blah blah blah we need the electoral college blah blah blah type sticks in the muds) and you find that almost every election is - for the sake of argument - split down the middle.  Some small town in rural O-H-I-O might make up the difference one way or another.  Whatever.  But here is my point.  We, as a country, are SPLIT DOWN THE MIDDLE as to what we think is the right thing for said country.  One side thinks they are right.  The other side thinks they are right.  One side thinks the other side is stupid.  The other side thinks that side is stupid.  Name calling.  BAM BAM SLAP CLICK SEND and we have a war on Facebook.

[Note:  I would NEVER get into a political argument on Facebook.  *straightens halo*]



So forget trying to do away with the electoral college.  Let's do away with the entire system altogether.

Now, listen.  I never read the Hunger Games but from what I have heard, I think they might be onto something.  What if each side called up an "opponent" per se.  "I, Tami Walsh, call up you, Mitt Romney, to fight to your death for our country on the White House lawn."  Yeah, this would take place just outside the Rose Garden.  Hells yeah.  So each side calls up a guy.  And here's the thing.  They get to bring people with them that represent what they want/think is right for the country.  So, like, Republicans can bring military generals and budget guys and Democrats can bring gays (not hating, just stating - and I know a bunch of awesome gay guys that could take a military general down in a heartbeat) and Nancy Pelosi.  I know, right?  Good fight!  They also have to bring the most embarassing guy (or girl) that is in their party.  So Republicans will bring the guys that are jacking off other guys in airport bathrooms and the Democrats can choose between the Clintons.  (side note:  I saw Bill Clinton speak at a Club Trip for my husband's company and I have to admit - I like the guy.  A lot.  Kind of how I like George Bush.  A lot.  Would like to have dinner with these guys.  Nice, kind, smart.......  Hey! Stop making fun of George.)  

Dinner would be lovely.  *daydream*

Ok, back to the presidency.  So here we are on the White House lawn and these guys are standing there.  Ready, set, go.  And they fight to their death and, ultimately, we have a new president.  And a bloody mess (not the UK kind, the real kind) on the lawn but in this illusion there is staff that takes care of that.

Oh! Oh!  It would also be funny, if there were bleachers set up like a high school football stadium and one side started yelling stuff like "Tastes great!" and the other side responds with "Less filling!"  Only one side would be yelling "Stop Hate!" and the other side would be yelling "Less Spending!"  Anyhow .....

It's an interesting concept.  I don't really want anyone to die.

We need a change in the system.  We do, as a country, need to be able to work together.  I'm not going to lie - I voted for Mitt Romney because I thought he was the better choice.  The end.  And I was ticked yesterday.  But today is a new day and here is what it boils down to:  As a country we NEED to succeed.   If you are a democrat, you need to work hard to prove the republicans wrong.  They (we) want to be proven wrong because it means OUR COUNTRY will succeed.   Republicans need to keep on keeping on.  Fighting about which side is right will never work.  Let's put that effort into making our country better.  God Bless America and Goodnight.

Now, I need to be getting back to Facebook because I think there is a debate I haven't weighed in on yet.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Would You Like to See My Peacock?

For Hallie's Halloween costume 2 years ago I decided she should be a peacock. Might be the dumbest decision ever. I thought I'd share it because it was the most expAnsive costume I have ever made (and I want to pimp it out on Pinterest). I did buy the tutu dress from some site on etsy (wish I could link it here but can't remember the name!) but thought making the feathers would be the easy part.... um no. I wish I had a progress pictorial to show you how I did it. But I don't. So I'll just tell you and you will have to use your imaginations... (I am still recovering from the glue gun burns.)

First I bought a turquoise fairy wing set. And some black boa feather things. And 5 zillion peacock feathers. Who knew those were going to be SO expensive? Then I alternately glued the feathers long and short on both sides and put the boa feathers at the bottom to hide the stems....

Now, I am trying to erase the mental images of us walking to the pre-trick-or-treat party at my neighbor Pam's house when she said she wasn't going to wear the feathers and I sent the boys on ahead of me so I could, through gritted teeth, tell her oh-yes-she-was-bless-her-heart.

In my opinion, the cutest part of the costume were the chucks on her feet. Now I am stuck with a 3 foot wide set of feathers and no where to store them. And I can't get myself to sell them.

Here is a close up of the back:

And of the front:

And, of Darth Vadar. Note the feathers. Oh right. Sometimes arguing with a toddler is SO not worth it.

Happy Halloween - just a couple months early. ;o)

Monday, January 23, 2012

Am I Turning into My Mother? Part 1. {Nike is Driving Me to the Poor House.}

Let me set the scene.... it was 1985-ish... Michael Jackson was going to be my husband [Billie Jean was NOT his lover], my spiral perm was fresh [my hair is thick.... spiral perm was awesome], my preppy handbook said my name was Tiffy, and I really wanted Guess jeans. I can remember wanting them so bad. I can still picture how they were hung on the rack against the white wall at Marshall Fields that backed up to the escalator. Facing forward. Lit up like heaven had shined upon them.

ME: Mom, I like totally really want this one pair of jeans...

MOM: What jeans?

ME: Guess. They are totally rad.

MOM: Jordache? Sergio Valente?

ME: No. Guess jeans.

MOM: Levis?

ME: Levis? Gag me with a spoon.

This is kind of how it went with my mother. So I took her to Marshall Fields and showed her the jeans. I could pretty much talk my mom into most things over time so I was sure I would go home with those jeans. I had the outfit for school on Monday picked out in my head - I had this super cute purple Forenza sweater I planned to wear with them. I can, to this day, remember how it felt to want those jeans so bad. And I can remember, to this day, how it felt to go home without that $50 pair of jeans.

MOM: $50 for a pair of jeans?

ME: *tears well in eyes*

MOM: No way.

My mom was the mom who bought the IZOD shirts at garage sales and took the alligator off and sewed it on my polo shirts from JC Penneys. You know your mom did that, too. Oh she didn't? Whatever. But I knew, deep in my heart, she was planning on buying those jeans that way and taking the triangle patch off the back and sewing it on my jeans from Kohls or wherever.

I never did get the Guess jeans that year.

So here we are, like 15 (*cough25cough*) years later, and I actually said these words. Out loud. To my totally rad pre-teenager.

"$12.00 for one pair of socks? That you will put a hole in in a month?"

There is no way to fake these socks but I'm not going to lie. I did think about it. And I have some pretty strong feelings on this sock look the boys are going for these days.

This is the look I am referring to:

And here are my thoughts:

1. Boys. Socks pulled halfway up to your knees with slides [people over 40: slides are the current day version of the flip flops the soccer players used to wear so they didn't ruin their cleats] or tennis shoes [people from the south: tennis shoes are sneakers] is a look you will regret in 20 years. Your future children will make fun of you the way we make fun of my dad for wearing socks with his sandals.

Sidenote: There are no looks I regret.

*slowly creeps out of room*

2. I am already getting ripped off by Nike when I pay $19 for a 3 pack of black socks. That are the wrong socks. (Refer to above picture for wrong socks)

(2 1/2. I know you are still thinking about my big hair and, well, yeah, that's Bill Rancic and me at a date party. We were married. Watch out Giuliana.)

3. How are socks sick? "These socks are sick, mom." Do they have anything contagious I wonder?

[Here I am going to digress. I like to think of myself as a pretty cool and hip mom. Saying I am a hip mom does not make me cool OR hip. It makes me old. I don't get why things are sick or phat or beast. I mean, I *get* it ..... I just think it's stupid. I got swag, I am phat but not fat, my jeans are sick (now that I pay for them myself) and my personality is beast. Word.]

4. Who decided these socks were cool? The ones you had to have. Did some 12 year old mother f-er walk into Dick's Sporting Goods and find the most expensive pair of socks and say these are the socks that are cool and I will tell the world (probably via Twitter because I don't twitter and wouldn't know if this happened) that they are the only socks that are cool and if you don't wear these specific socks, you are a total douche. (Douche is a cool word for dork. For realz yo.)

5. TRUTH: I am going to buy these socks. And I am going to go broke buying these socks. The younger two will have to forgo braces because I will have spent all that money on socks.

6. These socks better not disappear in the washer/dryer like all the other socks do. Or, for $12 per pair, they better come with some sort of tracking device. Like a find my iSock™ app or something. (I don't think iSock™ is trademarked but if it's not, I'm going to invent it so I put that there to protect me. What?)

All I know is that raising kids in today's age really socks. It's really hard to draw the line (onthebackofthesock) in what they can or cannot have. I guess socks are the least of my problem and I should be thankful ..... he'll probably be asking for a corvette when he turns 16.

Um, no.

Monday, January 16, 2012

I Have the Fever & I Hope it's Not Contagious! {A blog about Motherhood and Justin Bieber}

So let me set the scene. The family, decked out in our Packer gear, is holding our breath as we watch the Packers "play football" against the New York Giants on Sunday night for the chance to advance to the NFC Championship game and eventually the Superbowl. I got a lot of flack for looking past this game with the Giants and onto next week with the 49ers. Truth is .... it is my job to anticipate who we will play, if we win, and wish for one team or another team to win/lose and it is the players responsibility to worry about the current week. Apparently we all were looking ahead. But I digress as this is not a post about how bitter I am that the Packers lost last night. Or depressed. Or just in a funk. It's not about my Pack Fever at all.

It's about my BIEBER FEVER!

*cough* *sneeze* Sorry. Hope you don't catch it.

So last night (*coughafterthePackerschokedandwelostasupercriticalgameagainstthenewyorkgiantscongratseliandteamcough*) we flipped on netflix because really? Who wants to watch the Giants celebrate? In Green Bay? And what better of a way to take our minds off of The Green Bay Packers than a movie entitled Never Say Never - the Justin Bieber Story. (This might not be the real title - but it's the one I'm going with because it's damn close and I'm too lazy to do a google search)

The boys? Not happy. NOOOOO! NOT JUSTIN BIEBER!!!! DAD!!!! MOM!!!!!! Even Hallie (THREE YEARS OLD) was saying "I hate JUSTIN BIEBEH!" Um yeah ... sure you do copycat. So in an effort to get them to watch this movie with us we threw in a card game.

OK, now, being a 40 something woman with 3 kids - none of whom are girls between 7-13 who adore the Biebs - I really did not know much about this kid. I did admit this past Christmas that I think he has a very nice voice - even after he [allegedly] went through puberty. I also think he was blessed with some very good looks..... *swoon* (Kidding ... sort of)

But the story of this kid ..... his talent so young, his relationship with his family and friends .... the way he pursued his dreams and his mom was skeptical. This is a regular old kid whose mom just supported his dream. And let me tell you about the crazies I know.... I know a few people who will go to any lengths to get their kid noticed - modeling, traveling to Disney tryouts, etc etc .... these are also the people who *think* their kids are perfect and brag about them all. the. time. You know who they are.

But the Biebs? This movie - with the videos of him as a toddler - and the backstage stuff - really got to me. At one point Justin is so sick he can't sing and has to cancel one performance and literally looks like he is going to cry. And he tweets about it and a gazillion (it's a number, look it up) girls are all like awwwww ... feel better .... and then he tweets that he is sorry and he doesn't want to let anyone down. And then shoot to him the next week running around a park playing football with his buddies.... I mean really? This is a Good. Kid. Period.

[disclaimer: Now that he is successful and almost an adult, I am sure we may see him shave his head and go crazy like Britney Spears did, but, as a mother, I hope not.]

I'm not going to lie. At one point I was in tears. Literal tears for Justin Bieber.

So it got me to thinking - do I have the fever? Do I have the BIEBER. FEVERRRRR? *cold compress to head*

And if I do, how did I catch it? (the movie is the obvious answer here) And why do I have it? Well, I'll tell you why. Because I am a mom. And Justin Bieber represents every single one of our kids. The ones who sing and dance and the ones who don't. The smart ones who get straight A's and the ones who need ritalin to get through a day. (side note: Justin's 7th grade teacher described him as a kid who had energy all day..... LOL ..... perky in the morning and still perky by last period)

Justin Bieber represents our kids - Justin Bieber represents, to me, that my kid can do what he/she wants if he/she puts his/her mind to it. We all want our kids to succeed .... to find happiness in whatever they do .... and Justin Bieber proves they can, and sometimes, even though you are living your dream and making money and having fun, you still miss your family in Canada and want to go home. No matter who you are or what you do.

So, if you have netflx or are so inclined to rent it, see if you can get through it without catching the fever. Good luck! :)

(And as far as my Pack Fever? I've retired the Rodgers jersey until next year - you know ... when we will still be better than the Bears and that's all that matters.)