Monday, January 25, 2010

Take a Number, Please

I took "4".

It's not totally against all rational thought. I've always had a hierarchy. Packers first. If not the Packers, then the NFC North. Unless the NFC North win negates the Packer's playoff chances. If not the NFC North, then anyone playing against the Cowboys within the NFC. If its NFC vs. AFC, always go NFC.

So today, in keeping with the spirit, I backed the Vikings. The fact that one of the greatest quarterbacks of ALL TIME is now their quarterback (and was MY quarterback for YEARS) was really secondary, but didn't hurt the passion level.

I was cautious. I didn't want to be a cooler. But after a text from my favorite Vikings fan, I had to step up the support. I pulled out the stops. Or the tops (and bottoms), as it may be:

I even enlisted the family, who went a little old school, but supported the Vikes and Number 4 all the way to the end.

We had to catch the end of the game on AM radio, as we drove DrC to the airport, supplemented by Drizz's text commentary along the way. I can't remember ever being so tense. Or so disappointed by an interception. Or feeling so helpless in Sudden Death, just because of the outcome of a coin flip - he didn't even get another turn.
Apparently, there wasn't enough magic in the purple panties. This time.

Good effort, Old Man. You got them damn close.

Out of tradition, I'll watch the Superbowl. But my heart isn't in it anymore.

Guess my heart is still a little with Number 4.

Respectfully submitted,
The Wife

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Funny Things My Friends Say

I realize some of my friends and acquaintances (past and present) are pretty funny, and I look forward to reading Facebook and blogs and emails just to see how funny they can be. Here is my collection of recent faves (to protect the stupid and/or innocent, I have removed names, but you know who you are - if you even read this blog):

He totally gives good text.

I missed the memo that stated it was 'state the blatantly obvious' week.

Hope springs eternal so that it may be crushed repeatedly.

Yeah, but what is she learning on the clutch? . . . Hopefully how to get married so I do not have to pay alimony.

WHOA DUDE . . . this is NOT how you have a covert affair.

I don't care who you invite - just don't let it turn into a goat rodeo.

Today, less penis.

Keep them coming people - my happiness depends on your wit.

Respectfully submitted,

The Wife

Saturday, January 16, 2010


I find horoscopes and astrology a curious amusement. Like much religion and other mystical stuff, there is enough stuff in it that sounds believable at times you think "hmmm . . . I could believe that". But then once in a while you hit something really wacky, much like in religion (tie strings to your garments . . . don't eat shellfish . . . eat this cracker and pretend it some dead guys body . . . ), and you go "huh?"

I'm a Scorpio. I find that descriptions of Scorpio women are eerily accurate with respect to me. Even the crazy lady who really says a Scorpio woman's deepest regret is we weren't born a man. Except for that little blurb, she was pretty spot on. I think even my hubby would probably agree - she did say I'd make a good spouse for an Army man.

An excerpt from another one? "The sexuality, the secrets, the magnetism; it all sounds like so much to deal with! So why bother? It's worth dealing with a Scorpio beauty because of her great capacity for kindness. This may sound strange, but Scorpios, despite their tendency for walking on the wild side of life, truly want to do good in the world. In fact, a Scorpio woman may actually be the nicest, kindest, most good-natured person you've ever met; she connects that well with those who are suffering or are in pain. The other reason is one you've probably already guessed. Despite the drama, once a Scorpio woman loves you she'll love you for life. If she really believes in you, she will look past your flaws (but she will comment on them!) and risk life and limb to keep you safe from harm. If it's a passionate, long-lasting commitment you are after, look no further than a Scorpio beauty."

Then again, my friend Sheila, in high school, was born 5 days earlier than me and was NOTHING like that. Go figure.

So I have this funny thing with horoscopes. I like to read them. Sometimes, I like to write them. But I'm a big believer in the self-fulfilling prophecy, and like I feel about when religious fanatics believe prophecies are fulfilled, I think you tend to see what you want. So if you read your horoscope before the day starts, and you want to believe them, OF COURSE you will subconsciously alter your behavior or interpret everything to match the horoscope.

So I read mine in arrears - after the fact, to see how accurate they can be. Some days they are very general and could be interpreted any way you want. Some days, there is a little "hmmm . . . interesting how that correlates." I have had times, though, when I read them, and was significantly disturbed by how accurately they aligned with the previous day's events already in the history books. As if someone had been scripting my life. Particularly when the events of the day held some kind of heavy significance. At times, its eerie enough that I make myself stop reading for a few days, because I hate the thought that something besides me is controlling the outcomes.

Today was a monumentally good day. I slept late. Really late. Past lunch late. Got up and chatted with my aunt. Showered. Talked decorating, and walked through her house, planning the finishing touches on this expansive space that she's now left to make a home by herself. Ate a long, lazy late lunch/early dinner. Talked endlessly, mostly about relationships. Shed a few tears for my uncle who had passed - she still grieves and is trying to find her way without him.

We went shopping. Looked for area rugs. Tried on girly shoes and skirts and sweaters. Bought girly shoes and skirts and sweaters. Came home and talked for hours. Paused to tell my hubby and kids that I loved them. Ended the night sharing fond remembrances of when Brett Favre played for our team. Grudgingly admitted we'll be cheering for the Vikings, now that our team was out. Went online to review all the football records Favre holds. Determined that his next closest competitors in those long-haul career records were Fran Tarkington, Dan Marino, and John Elway, and realized we'd be able to rest easy for a good portion of our lifetime knowing our guy was pretty safe. Agreed that Peyton Manning currently has the best chance of potentially catching up to any of them.

It was such a perfect day, I couldn't help reading my horoscope, to see how good the stars were at seeing this kind of perfection coming. This is what I got:

You are annoyed at someone who doesn't respect your boundaries today and it may be necessary to take a stand. For example, a roommate or neighbor might be overly noisy and inconsiderate of your needs. Even if you decide to take an adaptable approach and patiently anticipate a quieter time, your irritation could build to antagonism. Don't wait until it's too late; it's best to express your feelings now before you lose your temper.

Is it just me, or is astrology just crap sometimes?

Respectfully submitted,

The Wife

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

I'm In!

Boss just invited me to the first "executive" poker game.

Play it cool, and lose gracefully to my boss?

Or play it hard, regardless of the outcome?

Oh, and I'm guessing we go with "no cleavage" for this game?

Respectfully submitted,

The Wife

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Anger Management

I'm pretty laid back, for the most part. Our house has a few rules which are sacred. No TV during mealtime except for special occassions. If you cook, you don't HAVE to clean. Everyone wears shirts at the dinner table. No Ferrari's appear in the driveway that have not been previously approved. Simple.

With our au pairs, I've been pretty lenient as well. Children's well-being is priority #1. Other things we handle as they come. We handled our car being totaled by one. Including a follow up "garage-scraping" which she rectified by paying for the bodywork. We've handled too much perfume. Too much talking on the phone. Too many burned utensils. Too much impatience. Too many clothes put in the wrong drawers. Too many laundry items turned pink by lack of appropriate sorting. Today, my limits were tested.

We've been "practicing" leaving Son #1 at home alone. 30 minutes while I go pick up dinner. 45 minutes while I do a more thorough shopping. Hour while I get my haircut. He knows the rules - don't answer the door; no friends; answer the phone, but say your mom just can't come to the phone; no fires; never tell creepy guys online you're home alone. For the most part, he's fine - watches TV, plays Wii, chats with his buddies via text, drinks juice bags and eats me out of house and home.

Our au pairs know that he can be alone some, and often use the time to go grocery shopping or run small errands with the little guy. Can't blame them. He's much less moody than the pre-teen, and hasn't developed the same shopping aversion.

Today was different. I sent a text to our current au pair to tell her I'd be home for dinner, and that maybe we could go to Chuck E Cheese's. I hate the place, but the kids love it. I didn't hear from her for 20 minutes, so I called home. My son answered. "How are you doing, buddy?" I asked.

"Well, ok, I guess." He sounded bothered, and I probed further. "Well, AP (au pair) is not home and I don't know where she is."
My first thought was that he'd gone to a friends after school and just beat her home. Not a surprise. "How long has she been gone?"

"Well, since I came home from school" - which was over 2 1/2 hours earlier.

First, I was sane and logical. "Did she leave a note? A text? A message?" He was negative on all counts. "I tried to call her mom, but she's not answering her phone."

She is good about not talking while driving, and I gave her a little benefit of the doubt. I sent her another text to let her know Son #1 was worried and that I would appreciate a response. Nothing. I got a text a few minutes later - Son #1 found that she'd left her phone (the one I pay for) home. He was frustrated. I was frustrated.

I called again 15 minutes later, to let him know I was packing up my work and leaving the office - I didn't want him to worry. By this time she'd arrived, and I asked to speak to her. I explained how critical it was for him to know where she was, and for me to know where she was. She countered, explaining that he never wants to participate in after-school things anyway. I told her I still needed to know where she was going to be, particularly if she was going to leave him alone without a point of contact that long. Also reminded her I needed her to remember the phone so that I could always get in touch with her.

I got off the phone and found myself shaking. Maybe it was the relief of knowing nothing bad had come - that weird fight or flight reaction you get as a parent that let's you stay logical in a crisis until its all over, and the emotions hit you all at once. Maybe it was all the unanswered questions I hadn't let myself ask - was she and Son #2 missing? Hurt? Worse? Maybe it was the sheer frustration of not being able to be in control of the situation, when it was my kids on the line. Maybe it was just that awful feeling when I heard the little waver of uncertainty in Son #1's voice.

Knowing I was about to blow, I called DrChako and replayed it for him. He told me I probably wasn't in a good state to go have a logical conversation with her about the importance of communication. I could still feel myself shaking, near tears. And so he convinced me to do a little anger management session using one of my favorite therapies.

$50 and and hour later, with a bag full of new walking shoes and these bad boys, I was much more cool and collected. The kids were safe, and tomorrow I can remind her that when it comes to my boys, you can NEVER be to careful.

Who says 4 1/2 inches of platform cork stilettos and leather can't make it all better, especially when they are on sale?

Respectfully submitted,

The Wife

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Obsessed with my Breasts

I am, a bit. But not for the reasons you all might think. Or the reasons you might be obsessed with them.

See, I hit a critical point a little over a year ago with respect to these bad boys. Well, bad girls.

I turned 40. It's the year all women who don't have other risk factors are supposed to get their first screening mammogram. I'm fortunate enough that I don't have other risk factors, to be sure. But there is something a little nerve-racking, even about something that should be routine. The likelihood that they find something is small. But what if they do?

Breast cancer is a scary thing. Your lifetime chances of developing it are about 1 in 8. And while chances increase with age, it's not just a disease of old women. Unlike, say, prostate cancer. I'm not sure on the exact statistics, but if you guys are fortunate enough to live to the average male lifespan or beyond, there is a pretty good chance your prostrate cells go haywire and give it up to the big C. But breasts are funny things. You can have 90 year old breasts that (save for gravity) are as good as new; but you can lose them at 35 to an aggressive cancer in the blink of an eye.

And its not just about statistics. Its about real people. Like my roommate/suitemate from college who's already been through it, the treatments, the lost hair, the lost breasts. All before the age of 42.

Seems like an easy fix, and eventually, it just is something I have to do. But there always seems to be one good excuse or another. First it was that we switched from being a military family to a civilian family, and I didn't have free dependant health care and had to find a new provider. Then it was we moved, and I have to find a new provider. And the excuses are supplemented by things like the fact that I haphazardly check myself and haven't found anything. And the fact that my husband is a doctor and periodically checks (though between you and me, I think somewhere in the process he gets distracted and it loses its medical efficacy).

The excuses will eventually run out, and I'll eventually go to the doctor, but it will likely be because I need my migraine prescription refilled and not because I'm so diligent about my preventative care.

I take my kids to get their shots and their teeth cleaned. I take my car to get it tuned up. I budget. I just need to make that call - be willing to give up an hour in my day to let some machine give me a squeeze and spit out the images for someone like my husband to read.

Piece of cake, right?

Respectfully submitted,

The Wife

Sports Suck

Kurt Warner sucks.

Sudden death overtime sucks.

Turnovers suck.

Having to wear purple next week because I hate the Cowboys even worse than the Vikings . . . sucks.

Respectfully submitted,

The Wife

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Random Observations

  • Did we really need to see the pictures of Tiger bare chested on Vanity Fair? I don't care of Annie Leibovitz took them or not. He's not that cute bare chested, and looks a little gangsta, 'cept without all the tough stuff.
  • Anyone ever seen Rock Star with Marky-Mark (I'm sorry, Mark Wahlberg)? The 80's hair band get-ups are AWESOME . . . the hair, the leather pants, the mascara. And Marky-Mark is pretty ripped. But the nipple-piercing scene might just be too much.
  • Anyone ever seen Will Ferrell do his George Bush show? HBO is playing it. I miss having Bush in office, if nothing else, for the comedy. Obama is not nearly as funny. Although he probably looks as good as, if not better than, Tiger with his shirt off.
  • Speaking of the Obamas, am I the only one jealous of Michelle Obama's upper arms?
  • When is the next Vegas trip? I'm ready to go . . .

Respectfully submitted,

The Wife

Tuesday, January 5, 2010


This is your mini-fiction break. Any resemblance to actual characters is purely coincidental. Unless you'd feel better about yourself by believing its about you. Then have at it.

It started with an email from an old friend. How long had it been since she'd heard from him? She felt warm and fuzzy just reading it. Until her mind skipped to him. Not him, the author; but HIM. How little it took for her mind to draw those loose connections that took her back to HIM.

She furrowed her brow and shook her head, as if that would clear the thought. It seemed to work for a period of time. Until she got in the car later that evening and found herself saying his name out loud. At that moment, the radio station changed songs. To HIS favorite song. She was certain she said the name before the song started, and not the other way around. She shivered, even though the car was warm with the lingering heat of the summer night. She drove on, trying to shake the weird feeling, her eyes on the empty street in front of her. The pool of light immediately ahead of her disappeared into a void of blackness a second later, as her car passed under the streetlight. She startled, then laughed at herself; no one had proven there was any psychic connection to street-light interference.

It was a long, dark drive, and she was suddenly overwhelmed by the feeling of loneliness. She'd been doing this job for a long time, away from the comforts of home. She needed a connection. She needed HIM. Knowing that somehow he would ground her, she started a conversation with him in her head. She found herself crying, stupidly, and then wiped the tears away with a leftover napkin from the last fast food place she'd visited. She swallowed the lump in her throat as she whispered his name in her head one more time.

She stepped inside the corporate apartment, laying her things on the counter, and slipping into the bathroom, without turning on the lights. She stepped back out into the darkness, noticing her phone flashing at her: a message. She flipped her phone open; it was from HIM. She looked around, and turned the lights on quickly. No one was watching her; no cameras were on. She read it carefully. "Don't forget to check your email."

She couldn't get her computer to turn on fast enough. The message contained no words, just an attachment. A picture of him - one she'd taken, years ago. He wore the stupid promotional shirt they'd gotten from the client; he was posing next to the statue, pretending to grope the stone buttocks of the neoclassical piece, staring directly into the camera and smiling, his blue eyes looking straight through the lens into hers. It was the same statue she passed every day now on her way into the office. She remembered taking the pictures that day; how hard it was to look through the lens at him without feeling the warmth start in her face.

Before she had a chance to be overwhelmed from the nostalgia, her instant messenger chirped at her. HIM. She couldn't keep the smile from creeping on to her face, and the apartment didn't seems so empty anymore. They chatted, simple things, until she realized how late it was.

"I have to go," she typed, still feeling the warm glow. "I've got an early meeting tomorrow."

"Grope the big guy for me," he typed, referring to the statue.

"You kill me," she tried to type. But it came out "You kiss me." She erased "kiss" and typed "kill", telling herself it was an honest mistake. In touch-typing, the "s" and the "l" were both under her ring fingers. So what if the "s" was under the ring finger of her non-dominant hand? Anyone could mess them up.

She told him about the mistake. Got back a smiley-face. "Subconscious?" he typed, teasing her.

"In your dreams," she typed, relieved, yet saddened, that he couldn't see the flush creep up in her face.

There was a pause. "Yes," he typed, and she felt her heart skip and thud as it stopped, hard, against her chest.

She waited for him to type more. But the single "yes" hung out there, nothing more, nothing less.

She held her breath. Then bravely typed back a single-word response.


Respectfully submitted,

The Wife

Monday, January 4, 2010

The Heart of Attraction

I'm alone again, watching The Governess, with Tom Wilkinson and Minnie Driver. This is probably a bad idea for several reasons. One, I'll never leave my husband alone with another nanny or au pair again, particularly if he starts buying photography equipment. And two, I get way too into a movie that captures the heart of attraction.

It's a simple story and actually starts off a little slow. He is a frustrated photographer, experimenting with techniques. Minnie is hired as a governess. His wife is stiff and plain; his children can be trying. In addition to taking care of his children, the governess takes time to help him with his photography; over time, you can feel them fighting the attraction, based on a shared interest in photography, which culminates when she poses for a simple portrait for him.

He takes her virginity; they have several more trysts, but all intertwined with photography sessions where they explore capturing human beauty, both of them fascinated with each other and their work together. She falls in love, but he scorns her, eventually; he claims she consumes him, and he can't be consumed.

He seduces her by being himself; in her innocence, she loves him with all she has and knows. He breaks her heart in multiple small ways, causing her to leave, but not before she lashes out, leaving his wife with a nude photo of him she took. Near the end of the movie, after much time has elapsed, he arrives in her portrait studio, presumably for a sitting.

"Are we done?" he asks, as he sits, still, for his photo, his voice almost hopeful.

"Yes," she says, her eyes wavering, a small quiver in her mouth. "Yes, I think so. Quite done."

His disappointment is heavy and obvious, but she turns, and walks away, her resolve stronger than her desire.

Leaving me wanting more.

God I hate romantic stories with heartbreak and passion. I mean, I love them. I mean, I hate them.

When is the next one on?

Respectfully submitted,

The Wife

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Purple Humiliation

In the spirit of being a good sport, I post the following pictures of me conceding defeat publicly in Las Vegas.

I was adequately primed and prepped for the occasion. Complete with undergarments and accessories. I had a purple bra and purple panties, much like these:

(Please note that a butt double was used, due contract term which I am not permitted to disclose. However, pictured panties and tush are remarkably similar to the real thing . . . )
I wore some bitchin' purple platform high heels . . .

And this was the finished product, courtesy of my favorite opponent, Drizz:

I had a moment of nostalgia, passing the jersey on the wall . . .

And while I will never come over to the dark side completely, the only reason to be a Vikings fan would be because of fans like this.

Love you Drizz and OhCaptain! And Drizz, thanks for such a classy jersey . . . what's up if we go head to head in the playoffs?
Respectfully submitted,
The Wife

The WPBT in Pictures

I didn't take nearly as many pictures as I intended to, though the camera in my mind is still filled with images I will never forget.

Here are a few I remembered to capture on camera:

Paris, by night, from the Chako room at the Bellagio

Mrs Chako, wedged in between the ever-bendy and smoochable CK and the ever-huggable Pebbles (while BamBam admires the collection of ladies from the camera angle)
Falstaff drinking one of several pitchers of beer

Even at dusk, its a great view

CJ, our very own Luckbox, was lucky enough to have attracted the attention of Otis' Steel Panther alter-ego: SPOtis

The Falstaff's enjoy Steel Panther

Bass player gives new meaning to "Hair Band"

Wooing the ladies

Rockin' out

Lights, camera, action

Hook 'em 'Horns, to some of you

Tourney day, with CA April, Butch, and others preparing for the big day

More tourney warm up

The lounge at Lagasse's Stadium

F-train chats up DrChako's buddies, Dr. Josh and his friend Dan, who was way too well-dressed for the Sunday crew

Sports fans

I couldn't resist taking a picture in the mirrored bathroom

And then I convinced a bunch of you to join me!

DrChako and the Mrs

A self-portrait - two of the loveliest, smoochable ladies I know

Infinity circles outside of the Palazzo . . .
Respectfully submitted,
The Wife

Definitions are Easy

My 7-year old was having a conversation with me the other day when he used the word "minion". I don't know that this word was in my vocabulary when I was 7. I asked him what it meant.

"Well, you know, its like a helper. Like for a bad guy. And when the master asks the minions to do stuff, you know, like steal something or something like that, then the minions do what the master wants."

Not bad for 7.

I need some minions.

Respectfully submitted,

The Wife

Saturday, January 2, 2010


I never actually make New Year's resolutions. The kinds that you write down and check back on at the end of the year.

I get enough of it at work. I have to do goal setting for every significant job I've ever had. We've always used the SMART model - Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, Timely. For short term goals in a work setting, its a very good model and something you can measure people and be measured against.

In life, its not a bad model either, for short term goals, like my plan to have cleaned the office over the winter break. To lose those few extra pounds by your next class reunion. To finish your taxes prior to April 15.

But setting these kind of goals only on the first day of a new year seems, well, a little short-sighted. Life changes quickly. Priorities change quickly. New challenges arise, and not just at the beginning of an artificial calendar adopted by the Romans some 2000+ years ago. Sometimes, your goals need to change too.

So I'm not setting any SMART goals for myself this year. Instead, I'm setting some . . . lets call them "life intentions". The kind of things that I should be doing this year, and every year. Things that I can always be trying to do better. Things that shouldn't necessarily have an end state, because there will always be another level to achieve. So here are my "life intentions", as I ponder 2010 and beyond:
  1. Take care of my body. This does not involve some specific weight or size goal or number of exercises, or permanent bans on any food products. It involves making conscious choices to take care of myself in small ways, each day, in moderate ways that aren't impossible to achieve, but have a positive cumulative effect. Drinking more water. Substituting an herbal tea for my diet soda now and then. Choosing to eat my favorite foods, just less of them. Choosing an extra salad, extra vegetable, extra protein, over something fried, breaded, processed, now and then. Take an opportunity to exercise now and then, even if its in the form of vigorous housecleaning or chasing my kids around the beach. Try to get more sleep. Try to engage in relaxation activities. See a physician about my blood pressure. Finally get that first mammogram I've been putting off.
  2. Redefine my personal concept of attractiveness. I'm good at doing this with other people. Seeing their attractive features through physical imperfections. Letting their sparkling personalities paint a glow over top of their crooked noses, under eye circles, love handles. Loving them for their humor, their brains, their drive, their ambition, their attitudes, their accomplishments. But I still stand in front of the mirror every day and pick at myself. Hate the bridge of my nose. Wish my arms had more tone. Wrinkle my nose at the grays that just keep popping up. Poke at the softness that age, children, lack of exercise, or that extra brownie has deposited here and there on my body. Bemoan the effect of childbirth and gravity and time on parts of my body that used to sit higher and tighter. I need to remind myself on a regular basis that being loving is beautiful. That being a good listener is attractive. That being confident and smart and successful and well-rounded is sexy. That most women are too busy worrying about their own flaws to notice or care about mine. And that most men, including my husband, don't register 90% of them, even when you're standing naked in front of them. Especially when you're standing naked in front of them. Because at that moment, there is a naked woman in front of them. Which trumps all personal flaws, it would seem (unless my husband's vision is just getting that bad). And if I need an extra boost, its nothing that can't be fixed by a well-fitting pair of jeans or some sexy high heels and a good pedicure.
  3. Love hard. You can never love your spouse, your children, or your friends too much. You can never say it too many times. Oh, your kids might say "I know, Mom, you tell me that all the time." I never want the most important people in my life to ever wonder how I felt. You will never run out of the word. And if you say it with conviction and meaning, you'll never run out of it either, as it will be reflected back on you tenfold. I will say "I love you" more.
  4. Compliment people and say "thank you" often. I love when people pay me a compliment. Whether its about my shoes, or how I handled a meeting, I know how good it is to have someone take notice of and mention how well I did. Or when someone thanks me for what I've done. As much as I like my paycheck, I still get the most satisfaction from a job well done that benefits someone or something else. I'm going to compliment people more. When they look nice. When they have well-behaved children. When they do something thoughtful for someone else. When they take a beautiful picture. Write a compelling article or poem or blog post. Do their jobs to the best of their ability. I will thank people more for the things they do for me, my family, my friends.
  5. Be open to new experiences. New hobbies. New challenges. New friends. New experiences. When I think back to some of the most rewarding, most memorable, most satisfying experiences of the past year, they all seem to come from being open-minded about new experiences and taking the opportunities that are right their in front of me. Some I can plan - like the "air tunnel" indoor skydiving we plan to try as a family. Some will materialize out of thin air in a moment and I need to see them, and seize them, and . . . well, to borrow a quote from Nike . . . just do it. Whether forced to try new experiences (like finding a new career after 15+ years at my previous one), or being blessed by the serendipity of stumbling upon a new experience at the exact right moment in space and time, I am a more complete person for all of the new things and people I let myself experience in 2009. May I actively look for, recognize, or create the opportunity for more of them in 2010 and beyond.

I hope when I get to the end of 2010, I can say I have moved the needle on all of these "life intentions" and that they will be timeless, for 2011 and beyond.

Of course, I still have some short term goals, including:

  • Finish my husband's business taxes prior to the deadline and without killing him
  • Register my cars in my new home state
  • Buy more well-fitting jeans and sexy high heels
  • Get a manicure and pedicure . . . ASAP
  • Subliminally woo Hugh Jackman to some intimate, romantic spot . . .

Wish me luck.

Respectfully submitted,

The Wife

2010 - Day 1

I woke up to an accidental alarm . . . but can't complain, because it got me up early enough to catch a New Year's virtual kiss or wish or two from good friends. And I got to go back to sleep until like 10:30.

I finished cleaning my house. I hate cleaning (which is why I vowed to use part of my paycheck for the rest of my life to pay for cleaning services), but I'm very thorough, and I love how clean everything is when I'm done.

I started a turkey in the oven right after noon. Prepared all the fixings. Took a nap in the down time. Finished the last details with a little help from CA April while we noshed on appetizers. Welcomed Betty just before dinner was ready.

Had a great homemade dinner with family and friends until we couldn't eat anymore.

Downloaded pictures from our trip to Disneyland. Watched a family movie with my little guy while he drew pictures.

Got kisses from all my boys. And this, from my littlest guy (including pirhanas!).

The first day of 2010 started off pretty good, I'd say. Not the stuff they make blockbuster movies about. But the kind of days I hope continue to fill up the chapters of life.

Can't wait to see what Day 2 holds . . .
Respectfully submitted,
The Wife

Friday, January 1, 2010

Hindsight is 20/20

As we prepared to celebrate New Year's Eve last night in typical "old, married couple with kids" fashion, which generally involves watching the ball drop on your big screen and drinking quietly at home, I did my best to ponder the last decade. Many of you out there, and many of my friends who either chose not to, or are not acquainted with my blog alter ego, have been tweeting, blogging, Facebooking, or otherwise pondering the last decade. Not all of the ponderings have been positive, and I had the overwhelming sense that a fair number of people I know were not disappointed to see this decade come to an end.

I tried to be honest with myself. After all, this decade contained a lot of events that, in and of themselves, not to mention collectively, could have painted my perception of the "aughts" (are we really going to call them that?) with a nasty negative perception. All significant life events that top the list of things that can stress people out:
  • I turned 40 in this decade
  • I found out I likely have high blood pressure
  • We found out the military was moving us to a foreign country. While I was 7 months pregnant. And before I had a job in Germany.
  • We moved again, courtesy of Uncle Sam, and I got to re-establish myself once more in another location.
  • We found out the state of Georgia had put a monstrous tax lien on us based on inaccurate information - almost cost us the ability to buy a house in Seattle
  • My husband got deployed to Iraq, leaving me to be a single mom for 8 months
  • Our first au pair, hired to help me while he was gone, totaled our car (thankfully, without children in it)
  • We lost a dear uncle of my husband's while he was in Iraq
  • We lost my father-in-law, under horrible circumstances, a mere three days before DrChako was returned to us. It was up to me to deliver the news to his two grandsons, my sister-in-laws, and to my husband, as he waited in Kuwait for a transport home, once the Red Cross finally located him.
  • DrChako's homecoming was a subdued affair in Florida, a day before his father's memorial.
  • We spent the next few months integrating a husband, a father, and a man back into a life that had continued on without him for some time.
  • DrChako left the military and we had to learn to live as civilians, where someone doesn't plan your life at each step.
  • We lost years of savings in our investments in the stock market, due to the economic downturn.
  • I lost my job of 15+ years for the same firm, due to economic pressures on our partnership structure. I had to deliver the message to my colleagues myself, as the firm took the "we're going to pretend this isn't happening" approach to explaining why all of my clients were being reassigned and why I wouldn't be there after June.
  • I started a new job. Which required relocating the whole family to California.
  • My husband still hasn't found a job down here, so he still lives in the Seattle area, and we are learning to live as a commuter family.

Save for maybe turning 40, all were significant events where numerous tears were shed. For those of you who know me well, you know that tears are a normal part of my reaction to significant events and strong emotions - love, anger, fear, joy, frustration. But the sheer emotional energy of these type of events could be crippling, if you let it.

Apparently I didn't let it. But then maybe its all about perspective.

I started the decade out happily married with one bright, inquisitive, and verbal toddler, living in our very first house, surrounded by friends and satisfied in my job. And last night, as we ended the decade, I was sitting on my couch with my husband, who is still my best friend, still takes the time to steal a peek at me naked in the shower, still compliments my cooking, and still looks appropriately stunned when I show up in a slinky formal dress and my Jimmy Choos. My children now numbered two, and they were happily tucked upstairs in our beautiful home, playing with each other and my oldest son's best friend - who we'd adopt in a heartbeat if we could. The bank account was flush, the cars were working well, and we had all of the material things we could need and most of what we could want (save maybe that Ferrari DrChako thinks is imminent in his future).

A little over two weeks ago, I just spent a great time with a bunch of you in Vegas. And I missed a bunch more of you who couldn't make it. And as last evening wound down, I smiled each time the good Dr. and I got a text or message from all of you, wishing us a great new year. And I was still smiling this morning when I found a couple more kisses and good wishes in the inbox.

At midnight, I kissed four of the most important men in my life. For all the tough spots this decade, I like how it started, and I can't complain about how it ended.

For those of you who can look back on the decade and be pleased with the outcome, may you continue to be blessed with good fortune and perpetual optimism. For those of you are hoping that the next decade blesses you more than the past one did, I hope the same for you.

May I end the next decade with family and friends as close I as I did this decade.

Respectfully submitted,

The Wife