Sunday, February 28, 2010

If you grew up during a certain time (also known as the 80s), you may remember Doug and Wendy Whiner from Saturday Night Live.

Doug (played by Joe Piscopo) and Wendy (played by Robin Duke) were a couple that WHINED about everything, especially their diverticulitis.

("But I've got diiiiiiiiivvvvvvvvverrrrticuliiiiiiiiitiiiiissss.")

For some reason, this stuck with me and I carried it into adulthood and right into medical terminology class in college.

We had this awful med term instructor who didn't really teach us, but instead made us go around the class and read the terms and definitions out of the book. One day, when it came to me, my word to read aloud was...yep, you guessed it...DIVERTICULITIS.

Because I'm the funniest person I know, I decided to channel Wendy Whiner and read diverticulitis and the definition like Wendy Whiner would. It got a good laugh from the class, but the instructor wasn't impressed. I was promptly asked to leave the class.

[Way. I KNOW. This is probably why I grew up to teach health care courses, including medical terminology. I not only joke around with my college students, I also let them joke around with me. *gaaasssp* I digress...]

Anyway, fast forward *many* years where my husband and I have shared a few good Doug and Wendy Whiner diverticulitis laughs.

This past Friday night yet another one of us spent the evening in the ER. This time it was my husband.

I stayed home with a sleeping baby and my husband was texting me updates. After a few hours I get the following text:

"I have diverticulitis."

At which point, I did what any supportive wife would do...I cackled.

(To my credit, I did refrain from texting him my amusement. I just laughed to his face when he got home.)

I do miss the good old SNL days...


Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Something was proven to me this weekend that I (and some of my closest friends) have suspected for quite some time:

I'm not really a girl.

If you've been around me for any length of time, this fact quickly becomes clear. I just don't like to do any of the stereotypically women (or woman-bonding) things.

I don't like spa days where you get facials and massages ("Please don't touch me. Thanks.")

Manis and pedis? *gasp*

Sitting in a salon for 2 hours getting my hair highlighted and cut?
A fate worse than death.

I don't like chocolate truffles, candy at Valentines Day, talking on the telephone, shopping (yes I said it, "I.DON'T.LIKE.SHOPPING!"), soap operas, Tupperware parties, changing handbags with every outfit, books and movies about vampire romances, gossiping or drama. (Seriously people, this is a NO.DRAMA.ZONE.)

I don't even really like jewelry.

I wear my wedding rings, a necklace from my husband, and the same hoop earrings--a gift to celebrate Ella's birth--daily.

That's it.

Which brings me back to this weekend's concrete proof.

My friends hosted a jewelry party--a fantastic company that will be a great side business for them.

As I walked into a room full of OOO-ing and Ahhh-ing women, I immediately realized something I already suspected:

This just isn't for me.

I was overwhelmed by the tables full of hundreds of pieces of jewelry. I didn't understand the need to fondle and try pieces of jewelry like the other women. I was even more perplexed at the need to discuss where you would wear it and with what outfit ad nauseum.

Don't get me wrong, it was a completely fantastic party with absolutely beautiful pieces of jewelry.

It's totally me.

I'm obviously missing that notch in an X chromosome that makes me giddy with joy over girly things.

I divulged this personal information to another mom over lunch this week when I said, "I don't like to talk on the phone, and I really don't like to shop."

At which point she said?
"We can no longer be friends."

See? I told you...


Friday, February 19, 2010

If you're like us, you'll take every chance you can to save money in this economy.

This even means shopping after-holiday sales for upcoming gifts.

For a brief time, stores will still have clearanced Valentine Day gifts available--many listed at 50 to 90% off the retail price.

I can just hear you asking, "What am I supposed to do with clearanced Valentine items?"

Did you forget that Easter is right around the corner?

Believe it or not, you can find plenty of Valentine items for your upcoming Easter basket at a fraction of the cost.

Shop Valentine clearance aisles not for the candy, but for the other items--cute cards, cups, games and stuffed animals.

Today, I shopped for my toddler and found a pre-packaged gift tin with a cute leopard (trust me, she won't even care that it's not a bunny).

I also found some peel-and-stick "make-a-face" Valentine cards (that really didn't look like Valentine cards, just stickers).

The total after the clearance discount for both?

For Easter, we'll fill the tin with a few pieces of Easter candy, some fun eggs and I'll wrap it in Easter cellophane.

When all is said and done, she'll have a cool Easter gift that cost us less than $10.

Worried that this won't work for the older ones on your Easter list? I also saw some cute mugs (that were love-related, but didn't look like Valentines), and some cool drink shakers--both of which would be lots of fun filled with Easter candy.

Use your imagination and don't be fooled into thinking that you can't use an item for another holiday just because it has a heart or the word "love" on it.

Now, go on. You won't have much longer until these deals are gone.


Thursday, February 18, 2010

If you have a toddler that goes to school, daycare or play groups, you probably have an entire bag of Valentine cards scattered around your home.

Us, too.
Have you ever thought of using them for "mail time" play?

Mail time play allows you not only to teach toddlers about mail, but also provides an opportunity for them to practice coordination and motor skills (along with a little strategy).

Mail time play is easy, especially since tots love to put things in and take things out.

All you need to do is create a mailbox, and the construction is pretty simple.

Toddler Mailbox

  • A shoebox (or a box with a removable lid)
  • Wrapping or craft paper
  • Tape
  • Scissors
  • Old Valentine cards (works just as well with leftover birthday cards, Christmas cards, or just plain envelopes)


1. Cut two slots of varying sizes into the shoebox top. (The two sizes helps with coordination and motor skills as the child will need to figure out that the big ones only fit in the big slot, etc.)

2. Cover the top and the bottom of the box with wrapping or craft paper.

3. Cut through the paper on the box top to expose the slots. Tape the edges down on the inside of the slots to make a smooth surface through the slot.

4. Write on or decorate the "mailbox."

Helpful Hints:
  • Be sure to use a shoebox or other box with a removable lid. The toddler needs an easy way to get the "mail" out so they can start over again!
  • Test that the cards fit into the slots before wrapping the lid. You don't want to have a frustrated toddler when they can't get the cards into the slots.
  • Toddlers love to color and work with stickers. This project is easy enough that the toddler can help with the entire process, but especially the decorating!

When you are finished, not only do you have a new "mailbox" game, but you also have a place to house those cards and "mail" when they're not being played with (sneaky, huh?).

My two-year-old spends time throughout the day putting her "mail" into the slots, taking them out and then starting all over again.