Friday, October 30, 2009

A true friend is someone who thinks that you are a good egg even though he knows that you are slightly cracked

Once upon a time, I was angry.

Once upon a time, I was overwhelmed.

Awww, who are we kidding? I'm still angry about those things. And overwhelmed and stressed? Ha. Add a kid in the hospital with pneumonia (J-bear), more teen trauma (Roo vs. homecoming), joblessness (Z-man, still), that MORTGAGE payment (don't ask) ... and yeah, I'm still stressed.

So imagine my complete amazement, surprise and delight when THIS was delivered to my door:

Yes, it's a package with a birdie on the front. A BIG package with a birdie on the front. A big CARE package with a birdie on the front. A big care package from someone who cared.

A big care package from Krissa from

Oh, Krissa, you have no idea what you did for me.

You put together a package of things that speak to me -- snacks, candles, scented soap, Burt's Bees, herbs to grow myself, cheese (CHEESE, people!), chocolate ...

... And something that made me laugh. Thank you, my friend Krissa. In the midst of your own problems, you took time out to feed my belly, my soul ... and my ego.

Yup. I'm a legend in my own mind!

Thank you again, my friend. Your evil plan succeeded better than you can ever know!


Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Back when dinosaurs roamed the earth ...

I love the team I work with.

We are a group of nine women from varying backgrounds with varying responsibilities.

The one thing that doesn't vary is our ages.

Except mine.

They're young. I'm old. At least relatively speaking. Most, if not all, of them are about the age of my oldest children, if not younger.

Yes, I could be their mothers.

We do find this amusing on occasion. I am referred to as the elder stateswoman and treated with the all deference that implies.


In reality, I'm more like one of the "girls" when we joke about life, liberty and the pursuit of craziness.

And so it was that one of my colleagues was walking with me toward the elevator, talking about -- of all things -- the fact that I was wearing eye makeup, which reminded her of something.

"Did you watch 'Sesame Street?' " she asked me.

And. I. fell. on. the. floor.

"Yes, love, I DID watch 'Sesame Street' -- WITH MY CHILDREN!"

She looked at me, uncomprehending ... and then realized what she had said.

And I positively HOWLED with laughter.

"When I was the age to watch something like 'Sesame Street,' the best thing on was 'The Mickey Mouse Club' -- in black and white!"

She gulped. "I don't think of you as that old," she said.

Obviously ...

I'm still laughing.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Home sweet homecoming

It seems that we must speak of homecoming again. This time, OUR homecoming, not the homecoming of some other school that we decided to essentially crash.

(Continued at Mid-Century Modern Moms)

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Weekly Winners: October 18-24

A dog's life, a birthday party for Wonderhubby and the homecoming queen of my heart!

Nants ingonyama bagithi baba ...

It's the circle of liiiiiiiife ...

The birthday boy blows out his candle:

The beard is growing back, please note.

It was YUMMY!

The mohawk is back, too:

From the side:

Really? I don't want to talk about it ...

The seven deadly sins?

From the left, Fabulous Girlfriend, Drummer Man, J-Bear,
Z-man, the Roo-girl, the Drama King and Rocky

The goofy five:

When it comes to homecoming, it's all about the shoes:

... And the dress:

... And that face!

Now go -->here<-- to Lotus' house for more Weekly Winners!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Everything's up to date in Kansas City ... or, uh, somewhere like that

The fascination with the cop-car-hits-Drummer-Man episode from last weekend's birthday dinner gives me an opportunity to play a little catchup with some hanging threads.

First, the cop car. This actually took place about nine years ago. Imagine my joy at receiving a phone call from my son, telling me he is at the local sheriff's station.

It took several deputies on the phone to convince me that he was ok ... and not at fault in a peculiar incident down the street from our house.

He was, indeed, in the left-hand turn lane, astonishingly waiting to make a legal left turn. The police car was in the center lane (to D's right). As Drummer waited for traffic to pass, the cop apparently decided he had someplace more important to be.

He turned on his siren (one quick WHOOP!) and made his illegal left turn -- right into the passenger door of Drummer's car.

It was a stellar moment, and as I said Tuesday, only my kid ...

Now, in no particular order of importance, are updates on unresolved things that you may (or may not) be wondering about:

1) My mom: Yes, there was a second surgery for breast cancer because her "margins" were not clean enough from the first. She is currently in the second week of six weeks of radiation. My sister-in-law the doctor declares her "fine," but if you ask my mom, fine is defined as "it sucks to be her." So bottom line: physically fine, emotionally not.

2) The stress test: I'm cured. No, seriously, I passed the stress test (because I have stress?) with flying colors. In fact, I looked so good, they took away the mitral valve prolapse diagnosis I have had since I was my 20s!

3) The refrigerator: The hole for the new fridge has been enlarged, and the thing fits in it quite nicely. Only problem? The hole was enlarged ... BUT NOT FINISHED. The fridge was just pushed into place. I don't want to talk about it.

4) My fantasy football team is sucking the life out of me. I will give Jay Cutler some small props for keeping me in the game this week, but Mark Sanchez? You're dead to me.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Birthday dinner: we had a gay ol' time

Neither rain, nor sleet, nor dark of night -- nor Chicago Bears games -- can stop the Planet family from our birthday-dinner rounds.

In keeping with Wonderhubby's wishes, we dined at a local sports bar, with the Bears-Falcons game in the foreground background.

After all, we did have to see if Jay Cutler (that ratfink) was going to give me heartburn and take our fantasy football team down in flames. Not to mention the birthday boy is a DIEHARD Bears fan.

So with the Bears in front of us -- and the Dodgers sucking it behind us -- we dined and celebrated in our usual fashion.

Drama King: What, Drummer, so were you going to hit a cop car?

*Don't ask. I don't know where this came from ...*

Drummer Man: No, I was the one who was hit by a cop car.

*True story. Only my kid*

Drummer Man: I was in the left-turn lane and the cop was next to me and turned right into me from the center lane.

Drama King: What was he supposed to do?

Drummer Man: I thought he was going to go straight.

Drama King: We don't do that.

Evil Mother: We don't do what?

Drama King: Go straight. We go gaily forward.

Evil Mother: Oy.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Drummer Man: Do you play Rock Band?

Drama King: Yeah, my finest hour was playing guitar and singing at the same time. I don't have a mike stand so I had to hold the mike between my legs.

*dramatic pause*

Drama King: Just deal with THAT visual ...

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Drama King: *looking around the table* Wow, you really DO have a problem with having grandchildren.

Z-man: Yeah, Drummer, it's all on you.

The Roo-girl: And me!!! I like boys!!

Drama King: Me too!!!!

Evil Mother: *smacking him on the shoulder* Shush.

Drummer Man: So, you want grandchildren, Mom?

Evil Mother: Of course. I'm depending on you.

Drummer Man: *grinning* Well, ya know ...

Evil Mother: Are you trying to tell ...

Fabulous Girlfriend: NO!!!!!!!!!

Evil Mother: Bwahahahahahahahahhahahahaaa!!!

Monday, October 19, 2009

Pssst ...

Those of you who know me well know that I am caught between a rock and a hard place while I watch time fly by as we move inexorably closer to "the big one."

You know ... the BIG one.

(Continued at Mid-Century Modern Moms)

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Weekly Winners: October 11-17

It's raining, it's pouring ...

Wait. It's 90 degrees again.

Whatever. It DID rain, however briefly, and water on nature is one of my favorite sights.

No, this shot is not upside down, even though it seems like it should be.
It is, however, straight out of the camera. No special effects.

Oh and it was foggy, too:

It's time for cheer (again):

For the record, this is not my kid. I just liked the shot!

This, however, IS my kid.

And so is this!

For more weekly winners, travel to the lovely house of Lotus.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

When words fail, stick to the facts

There is so much I want to say.

So much I NEED to say.

I just don't seem to have the right words to say them with.

So for once, I will keep it simple and to the point:

Happy birthday to my knight in shining armor.

I love you, baby ...

Monday, October 12, 2009

The dating game

The Roo-girl sorta-kinda-maybe had her first date on Saturday night.


(Continued at Mid-Century Modern Moms)

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Weekly Winners: October 4-10

A little bit of this, a little bit of that ... and cheer, of course!

Z-man shows his attitude before his chorus show:

Yes, that's a lip stud over on the left of the photo. Eccch.

For the show, someone shaved his beard:

I have only seen his unhirsutedness twice in our nine years together!

Double bell euphoniums and big bassoons, each bassoon having its big, fat say!

Ok, it's not a bassoon or double belled, but it IS a euphonium!!

And there's cheer!

Can I just say what a pain it is that her school name is across the
front of the uniform? Photoshop, anyone??

Dancing queen:

For more weekly winners, go --->here<--- to visit the lovely Lotus' house!

Friday, October 9, 2009

In search of answers

"I was watching a show about the Antichrist on the Hitler Channel ..."


THAT'S an on-the-way-to-school conversation starter, doncha think?

But first, don't judge. In my family, we call the History Channel by that name, due to its propensity to show many, many, MANY programs on World War II. We can't help it. It's in our nature to be irreverent.

So back to the Roo-girl's conversation opener.

"I was watching a show about the Antichrist ..."

I looked at her, amused, and she continued:

"The Antichrist is supposed to believe he's God -- or even greater than God. And he is supposed to rule for seven years. For the first 3 1/2 years, people like him, but for the second 3 1/2 years, they hate him."

Really? These are things I never knew -- or thought I needed to know -- but hey, I'm game to learn too. Tell me more, Roo.

"So you know who I think is the Antichrist?"

I looked at my daughter, unable to even fathom what was going to come next. I was right to not fathom.

"Kanye West," she crowed.


"No, really, think about it," she insisted. "He thinks he's God and he should be in the Bible. And people liked him for a few years and now they hate him ..."

I roared with laughter.

She grinned, and her eyes twinkled.

"I'm SO smart!" she said, nodding her head. "Don't underestimate me, my friend!"

Nope ... never.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

How can I embarrass thee? Let me count the ways ...

A day without embarrassing my children is like a day without sunshine.

No, really. I truly believe that I have been put upon this earth to make my kids flush bright red and run screaming from the room. And my day isn't complete until I have done that at least once.

Case in point: my phone. My ringtones are the most embarrassing ever. When Wonderhubby calls, I get a rousing chorus of "... My life ... would suck ... withoooooouuuuuuut youuuuuu!"

The mere mention of Kelly Clarkson makes the Roo-girl want to stab me with a spork.

Even better, though, is my ringtone for the Roo-girl herself: "There's a she-wolf in the closet ... let it out so it can breathe ...," followed by some heavy-duty panting. Why did I pick that for her? Because she HATES the song. (I would have linked to the Youtube video, but it weirded me out too much. Love the song, hate the gyration.)

Anyway, Z-man hears my phone "ring" and rolls his eyes. After wanting to hide under the nearest coffee table, of course.

I boogie to the radio in the car. I skip down the street. I laugh too loud. I won a gross-out contest with the Drama King (he will never challenge me again). Oh, and I ask embarrassing questions.

It's a gift.

I must admit, however, that I'm a lightweight compared to my BFF, who once broke wind -- loudly -- in time to the music of a Christmas carol at the mall. To this day, her children cringe when they hear "Feliz Navidad."

But I digress.

Yesterday, I had to go to work early. Roo's school had a late-start day (oh, how I HATE you, late-start days!).

So I took her to Starbucks, where she was going to meet a friend and hang out before school. Nice mommy that I am, I even bought her drink before I left her there.

Here is how I ordered:

"I'd like a grande half-caff skinny vanilla latte ... and ... um ..." (looking around for Roo, who had her nose pressed against the pastry display window) "... uh ... whatever the Queen of the May is having."

My friendly barrista thought that was pretty funny. He also seemed to have had a little trouble hearing me, because when our drinks were called, we heard this:

"Janet ... and ... Queen of the Day."

Yes, the dude had actually written Queen of the Day on her coffee cup.

Roo was NOT amused. And if looks could kill ...

My work here is done.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Hell's bells kitchen

My son Z-man graduated from culinary school last May.

I was/am so proud of him. But for all of his accomplishments in the kitchen in faraway collegeland, he would never -- and I mean NEVER -- cook for me.

(Continued at Mid-Century Modern Moms)

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Weekly Winners: September 27-October 3

A week for a little nature and a lot of cheer ...

From the ground up:

Ice plants are cool:

The season is over ...


The hurkey-jerky:

What goes up ...

... Must come down:

My girlie:

The homecoming dress:

No, this is NOT the $15 dress.
We returned it and shopped this past weekend for this hot number.

Go --->here<--- for more weekly winners at the lovely Lotus' house!

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Just. one. more. thing.

I try to keep it light here at Casa de Planet.

You have laughed with me as my kids try to out-gross each other. You have smiled warmly as Roo-girl's maturity ebbs and flows and she demonstrates both her savvy and her blondness.

You have also cried with me and offered warmth and hugs and kindness as I sometimes reach deep into my soul and pull out a piece of my heart.

Today, however, I have reached a particular low.

Not because there is any particular issue. But because there are many.




And here in my private/public space, I have to say that I cannot take it anymore.

Possibly I have gone soft after six months of being away from the daily beatings of the newspaper world. Possibly my now-less-needed hard coating and defensive walls have chipped away, leaving a more exposed, more vulnerable me to things that would have rolled off a year ago.

In truth, I started to make a list of all the things that have been dropped in my lap in the past 24 hours, but as I wrote it down, it began to look ridiculous and stupid.

Ridiculous because some of the things really are nothing.

Stupid because even the big things look ridiculous in print.

The THINGS include new refrigerators that don't fit in the spot that Wonderhubby just painstakingly enlarged -- at great expense, time and personal aggravation.

My mother had a second surgery for breast cancer and -- ahem -- neglected to tell me.

The Roo-girl has "lost" her round-off back tuck. Z-man has lost his job. And I have lost my mind.

I also have had chest pains, and, therefore, a stress test is scheduled for Friday.

Stress? I think I'll pass.
All Rights Reserved. Planet of Janet, 2010.