Are you watching 30 Rock?

I wasn't.

I've got enough shows. Great shows. Too many great show. Shows like Grey's Anatomy, Ugly Betty, Life, Heroes, Dexter, and the list goes on (thank you, Tivo). Who has time for a new show?

Not me. No way. I would have to cut out sleeping and parenting all together.

Actually, the real reason I didn't watch 30 Rock is because I liked the other show about the Saturday Night Live-esque variety show by the amazing writer of the political show that makes me want to be a better American. And I wanted to be loyal and show my support for the totally superior show. Which was a great choice.

So that show is cancelled now.

And then the writers strike happened. And all of my shows stopped. ALL of them. Every single one.

So, I've been trying on some new shows. And I've found a couple of keepers.

The L Word is wonderful and edgy and dramatic and I have a full fledged crush on this lesbian right here.

But the FIND OF THE MILLENNIUM (I exaggerate - it is probably just the FIND OF THE CENTURY) is 30 Rock.

I can't say enough about how wonderful Tina Fey is. And Alec Baldwin (whom I don't even like so I could not possibly have had lower expectations) is quirky and funny and kind and totally worth watching. The entire cast is so likable and sweet.

The topper - Netflix now offers all of their customers unlimited "watch instantly" time at their site. So if you are a customer you can log in and watch the entire first season back to back. And laugh until you cry. And blow snot out of your nose describing the funny to your significant other.

Seriously, don't miss it.



Which can look a lot like avoidance.

I'm going to chalk it up to the post holiday let down.

Right now I am watching the Hallmark Hall of Fame movie. It is a complete sob fest. Even the commercials. Good god. Those people know how to wring out a tear.

I'm getting back into the swing of things.



Happy day off.

I am watching snow fall. Right this minute on my little mountain it is snowing. And snow is always so exciting for us. Exciting and cold. And slippery. Often without electricity and water. But very exciting overall. Yea!

Fires are raging. My family is with me. I am happy.

Here are a few links to some healthy recipe sites. I have been eating poorly this week. Time to get inspired again and since I found these I'll share them with you.

delicious living mag
healthy eating made easy
a weight lifted





Madigan started dance classes this week. She has been dancing forever, literally since she was two. This year Maddy is starting late (January instead of September) because she had a play earlier in the year with a relentless practice schedule. No room for dance on the family calendar.

So, tonight was her first time at the ballet class she'd picked out. Good size. Good age range. New teacher. She went in at 6:15 feeling good. I told her I would return in an hour.

I went to look at furniture at a nearby store. Just killed some time. Made my way back to the studio. Sat myself down in the waiting room to start watching her class on the CC television.

Oh no. I could tell the instant I laid eyes on her. Maybe it was the way her shoulders were scrunched up so high; maybe it was her eyes as big as saucers; maybe it was just that way a mother knows when her child is not OK. I'm not sure what tipped me off but I KNEW that she was freaking out. On the verge of losing her shit.

At 7:15 on the dot she ran from the room. Ran. She bolted. None of the other girls did. I asked her when she got to the lobby, "Is the class over?"

"I don't know. I'm never going back there. Let's go!"

I started in with the "Wait a minute. What's going on? What happened?" but she would not talk until I got her to the car. And then she was crying over her talking and so I had to take it to the next level. I called in backup.

Over New York Cheesecake (for her) and low fat, no sugar added Berries n Bananas (for me) we discussed the situation. She HATED the class. New teacher Nickoli (Russian trained ballet dancer himself) was not, as it turned out, mean. He corrected her endlessly because SHE COULDN'T DO what he was asking her to do. The stretches and poses he asked her to hold were so hard they were painful in the extreme. No matter what, even with extra help, even with lots of time to come up to speed, she didn't want to be in this class anymore. End of discussion.

And I told her it was OK. And it was.

Until we got home. To my husband, her father, the 24 year football coach, that guy. Remember him?

Good times.

Needless to say, there were more tears. Needless to say, I was frustrated. To be fair, so was he. I've always taken a different view of sports and extra curriculars (or as I like to call them, "hobbies") than his. We do not see eye to eye. He believes, deeply, in the power of the team dynamic. How "rising to the occasion" by "pushing past the pain" can be so "character building."

That may be true, however I don't think any of those things applied to this situation.

I'm going to have to interject here that being a quitter was not OK in my home as a child. If I signed up for something I was expected to complete the season, year, session or whatever. I also have to interject that this knowledge made me not want to sign up for stuff. Cause I would rather sit on my ass and watch TV than try something new if it turned out that I hated it and had to suffer through endless weeks of torture.

So, what ended up happening was Maddy and her father talked. I broke it up for a bit so she could shower, during which time I tried to manipulate Ruben into thinking like me, failed miserably and finally gave up. When I was tucking Maddy in I asked her what she thought about her talk with her dad.

"It was OK." she said. "I know Daddy really wants me to take the class. But I told Daddy that even though I know that this class might be good for me, I really don't think it is the best for me. And he said that was OK."

I told her I was so proud of her for standing up for herself.

And now I know that this day was a pretty good day after all.



No electricity. For over 72 hours. Water coming from 2.5 gallon jugs.

Good times, let me tell you.

Today we miraculously have electricity, hot water, internet and all is right with the world.

Jealous? I thought you would be...



We are having huge storms on and around my little mountain right now. The winds are getting up to 90 mph. Electricity is out (except when the generator is running, which will not be for long) and very loud winds are whipping through the cracks in the house and knocking over patio furniture.

At one point a big piece of furniture fell over with a very loud CLANG on the deck and shook the house quite a bit. We all stopped to look for the tree that we imagined had fallen through the roof.

Once we realized we were all safe, Levi said "That FROKE us OUT!"

Well said, my son.



I am morally opposed to New Year's resolutions.

I hate the idea of them. I hate the pressure to become a better person or strive for excellence at exactly the same time that I know I will be writing the date incorrectly for the next 3 months. What's the point? Who needs it?

Also, arbitrary dates dictating change are never effective in my life. Change comes when I am ready for change. And that is rarely when I am totally exhausted and recovering from the end of the year madness known as the holidays.

So, it's the new year. 2008 is a couple days old. So far, so good. I will not, intentionally, be doing anything different today than I did last week just because the calendar has switched over. If I do something new it will be because I spontaneously want to do something new.

Here is a short list of the things that I will continue to do well into 2008 and probably beyond, proudly or otherwise:

1. I will continue to cuss like a truck driver or a sailor or whatever stereotype known for cussing a lot. I love it. I don't make it a practice to cuss in front of my kids, however my kids know that these choice words (these wonderful words - some of my favorites really) that they may hear from time to time are NOT FOR THEM. My kids don't get to use those words. It is not their option or their choice. Shucks, darn and gosh are the expletives that they get to choose from. Have at it. More power to ya. I'll be using mine. And loving them.

2. I will continue to wear high heels. I have several pairs of pants that will be rendered unwearable if they aren't worn with heels. I know my back and feet will pay the price. Now is not the time to cut my wardrobe in half.

3. I will continue to talk to my doggies like they are mildly retarded infants. I find it impossible to use an adult voice when I am alone with them. I make up words and phrases that would be considered embarrassing in nearly every other instance in my life. Phrases like "Duh da ma Cal!" and "Ooda mooda shmooda shmoo."

4. I will continue to let my children come into my bed in the middle of the night. I decided a LONG time ago that my kids sometimes need their parents outside of the "regular parenting hours" and I am OK with that, especially as a mom who has worked outside of the home. It has, of course, led to the infamous "What are you doing?" exchange with Levi as he stood next to our bed while Ruben and I were, ahem, visiting with one another. And the extremely embarrassing explanation that I made, "This is how Mommy and Daddy love one another sometimes." Oh, lordy. Rube loved that one. We should probably move on...

5. I will continue to eat delicious and totally unhealthy foods. For the past few months I have been limiting the frequency and amount, but the deal is that I will always know the "points value" of a chocolate doughnut. And when I want one I will have one. Or two. Or someone will die. It's really that simple.

6. I will continue to hang out with my girls. Poker, Catch Phrase, lunches, movies. All of it. I have read about intimate relationships where one partner isolates the other one until they have no friends or confidants and no one with whom to seek counsel. It is actually a big indicator of domestic violence. Well my friends, worry not! No DV here. Ruben doesn't want me sitting around obsessing about him. He likes me better when I have a life outside of our immediate family. And more importantly so do I.

7. I will continue to think my family of origin are the best in the whole entire world. I know that many other families are lovely families with wonderful ways of celebrating and communicating and loving one another. I just believe mine is the best. So there you have it.

8. I will continue to smoke. I actually want to quit again soon but as I am focusing on a couple of other healthy behaviors right now that take prominence I am buying myself a little more time.

9. I will continue to blog. I thought about quitting, but as you can well see I'm not a very good quitter.

10. I will continue to brag shamelessly about my amazing and wonderful children. In fact, I'll talk up my whole fantastic family. Deal with it.

And I will never, ever purposely quit anything on January 1.

Unless I change my mind.



Last couple of weeks looked like this:

Holiday prep, work, getting sicker than I've been in years, secret vacation planning, hosting Christmas dinner for 15, travel, amazing (no longer secret) vacation to Disneyland, driving home, fabulous New Year's Eve party with peeps in the old hood.

Now I have one day to rest up, do all the laundry and get back on the healthy wagon before I head back to work. Which will be easier with the yoga gift certificate I got from my husband for Christmas. Yeah me.

I wish you prosperity and success and growth in this brand new fresh year.