Monday, April 30, 2012

Notes on Soccering

It's soccering because I am an American soccer Mom. I am a soccer Mom who might possibly enjoy the game more than my son. He enjoys playing. I'm a crusty old thing so I enjoy watching. I like the old British Managers in their puffy track coats. I like the younger, sleeker header Euros that coach in Italian suits and shoes I want to buy my husband.

*This is Josep or Pep Guardiola. I like him in his Italian suits and v-necks. Because he cares about his quality of life and stress reduction, he has just resigned as the Manager of FC Barcelona. His replacement? Some Tito dude, not nearly as handsome. I would shag balls for this dude. I mean that in the American way people.

I'm learning the sport. I'm figuring out how the professional leagues work and I am drawn in. I think this will last longer than both my t.v. golf and World Series of Poker (Texas Holdem) viewing. Soccer, especially English Premiere League provides me endless venues of escapism and interest. (See the DailyMail -- horrible habit, I know!) There is the Soccer Wife gossip, the young impulsive players and of course the world of money and politics of a very lucrative professional sports industry.

I have been known to purchase a FourFourTwo .

The Kid is trying to decide who his favorite team is. Right now he has favorite players. He makes the "aww" voice like he's talking about a cute cat or penguin when he says, "Messi", or "Rooney". He likes Barcelona and he likes Chelsea and he likes Manchester City and he likes Real Madrid. This is problematic. You cannot cheer for two teams within the same League.

Though I have enjoyed watching Chelsea, I am not a fan. However I am steering my son in that direction. My latest attempt at guiding him in making a reasonable subjective decision? When we go to England his chances of seeing a Chelsea match if they are playing (in London) are considerably higher than me taking him to Manchester. (Just sayin'...)

*update I tried to pitch this to the Kid, but was interrupted by his father who said, "You can like who you like. If we go to England I will take you to Manchester. What? (looking at me) England? It can't be bigger than Texas, how far can it be?

On that note, The Kid played well for himself this weekend. He looked like he was thinking, finding his position, but most importantly having fun.

Who knows how long this mentality will last. Beyblades were all the rage last year, this year ... meh. I just hope we can continue to bring the fun aspects of the game home to share, whether it's on the t.v. or cheering on the side of a pitch.

*you know what is really fun to share? a soccer win. I know, not very progressive of me, but heck, winning isn't everything but it sure is a w e s o m e. ha!

Family Quotes: Weekend Decisions Edition

This weekend was busy but not overwhelming. So in between the social and the exercise, our family found it's decisive moments.

1) Husband to wife and child, On The Kid and I discussing why we left his gym bag at the soccer field. "I thought you had it?" "Well I thought you had it.": I will never leave anything valuable with either of you. 

2) The Kid, On family planned meals: I really don't care what we eat for dinner. I just don't want what we had last night. When asked why he responds, "Well ... we had it last night."

3) The Kid on his old footwear: "I won't ever wear those shoes again. I tried to tell you and Dad. They still smell since I stepped in poo. I don't even think it was dog. I think it was ... cat! It doesn't matter, throw them away. I will never wear them again."

4) Me, on reminding my son to say, "thank you" to the nice lady at Supercuts that trimmed his coif after his general reluctance, "It's two words. Say. Them." I think I growled. His eyes started to water. I know he was feeling shy about it. I know I didn't care.

His father says, he was mad because The Kid actually had said it already (he had heard), I just hadn't heard. 

Humor me and say it, or tell me like a normal human being that you already said it.

5) The Kid on the success of his haircut after we all told him how good it looked: "I like it. I liked it better before."

6) Me, on having some free time: "Yeah it was great. Wow, I really got nothing done though did I?"

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Bad Parenting: Item #468

Yes it's another true confession post. An admission of bad parenting.

First and foremost it is a depiction of my inability to remove my ego and pride from parenting. It is knowing my child is fallible and entitled, but not handling it in a proper way.

It is me unleashing my frustration.

#468 Don't call your kid names and tease them like a mean kid on the school yard.

That is my great advice to you all.

Don't do as I did and will probably do again.

I just lost it with The Kid's attitude. His apathy about certain things and the entitlement "Get me some milk." or whatever choppy demand he gives,  has just been growing on me like a callous. I am trying to tolerate it and ask him to ask nicely etc. However he is just so expectant without much awareness of what other people are doing. (cooking, packing a lunch, trying to keep you from walking into the street w/o looking) etc.

On the other hand I have also been frustrated and pushy and bossy to try and "help" him.  

But I lost it today. I called him a "brat".

We did not part friends this morning. I was a meanie.

We gave each other cold stares at drop-off.

I really am my own worst enemy. Who do I think he is emulating in these moments of selfishness? Who do I think he is learning his impatience from?

Ugh. This is why I can only manage one. I lack depth.

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Family Quotes: At my expense ,,,

The disclaimer: I thought long and hard about posting this, despite the fact I don't really have "a following", I have a sense of shame.

Apparently, not enough.

The scene: For the written record, I was working hard ... on a spreadsheet at work. I was watching the last few hours tick by and knew I needed to get it done.

Phone call. I guess it's Manfriend. I am, of course, correct.

Why is he calling? The evening agenda was already determined. I shouldn't be seeing them until approximately 9:30pm. I know they love me and I love them, blah blah... spreadsheet.

Me: (in a slightly impatient tone) Everything okay?

Big Him: (in an easy breezy, george and wheezy kind of tone) Oh yeah. Got your boy, we're home. He's quite chatty today.

(I wait for some comment that The Kid is his mother's son or something ...)

Testing went well. He said that he got up early and was on time today. He said that you should've been out the door at 7:10, but didn't get out until 7:25. I asked him what the delay was. He said, "The DELAY was MOM POOPING."

He didn't have to imitate my loving son's indignant tone. I could hear it well enough.

Big Him: (chuckling and snickering) Ok honey, have fun tonight. We love you, talk to you later.

End call. End Scene.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Yay! Just what I wanted!

"Just what I wanted" was the subject header in my friend's email. It was a quote from her daughter, Ms. D. when she opened the handwarmers I had finished making her in Kansas.

That's right people I finished something. Thankfully Annie took a picture and sent to me and I can share with you.

She's some cute stuff right? Annie has promised me a picture of her sister, Ms. J. rockin' her honey cowl I finished as well.

I have been on a handwarmer and armwarmer train these days. I love the thrill of small project completion. (Who are we kidding. I love  any sense of completion!) Self-striping yarn is the perfect thing for this. You can knit in the round on your way to work or waiting for your table reservation, or the orthodontist to finish a check-up and ta da! You have a nice cylinder in it's own pattern and you only had to haul around ONE ball of yarn.

AndiGal needs to get out of my head, because look what she posts! Lots of good stuff, including Indieyarn that self stripes, with kitschy names. She shouts out to LOTR and Downton Abbey and even Big Bang Theory (which I've been known to watch on rerun when home alone ...) A lady after my own heart. 

Now excuse me I have some shopping to do ... "Just what I wanted!"

Thursday, April 19, 2012


Guess what I have been? That's right! I think it's a case of distracted brought about an acute case of exhaustion. If only I were a young ingenue they could jet me off to a retreat or spa or lock me down in a 5-star hotel for some much needed recuperation.

Alas, I am a working soccer Mom with a knitting problem and a date to keep with cardio. There are no personal assistants, there are only overworked husbands.

So one must function out of a cranky place.

I can't focus. I try to watch a soccer match on t.v. with The Kid and I'm rooting around my ottoman for missing stitch markers. I start to put away dishes but am distracted by the partial bags of crackers and snacks in the untidy "snack corner" in the kitchen hutch. This makes me wonder if the Manfriend remembered to throw away that item in the fridge with the garbage last night. Now my head is in the fridge ...

and so on.

I wanted to get some more knitting done, but of course I'm distracted by a book I picked up in Kansas, "The Woman in Black".  It's that recent movie with Daniel Radcliffe, from Harry Potter as the lead. Well, nothing on him, the book was a train straight to Boringtown. I still had to finish it for some reason. Insisting on finishing this book a few nights ago impacted a) amount of sleep I needed and b) finishing baby blankets.

However even though I had 2 baby blankets on the knitting needles and cardigan, I felt like I should cast on some arm warmers. Makes no sense. I know.

My boss mentioned I seemed a little out of focus the other day. She suggested I break out my steps a little to stay on task.

If she only knew ...

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

A Zumba Story

When your regularly scheduled activities shift, sometimes you need to shift with them. I am trying to run another 5k this Sunday and I wanted to make sure I get at least 3 days of cardio in the week leading up to it. Due to other fun times I already had scheduled and not be a complete absentee mother ... I was not going to be able to make my usual Zumba classes.

I know Zumba ... even when I say it at home, The Kid starts smiling and imitating hip thrusts in a comical manner. I don't care. It's so much fun and no matter how craptastic I feel before, I always feel better after. And no matter how goofy I look when I do it, when I look in the mirror I almost always have a puffy, red, sweaty kid-like grin on my face.

Well, I was going to have to find a Wednesday evening class to keep me in my groove. I found one pretty close to home. A studio I've been to before in the winter. It was a little creepy leaving there in the dark, but in the daylight you still feel safe in such an urban/industrial area. Plus it's like 6 blocks from my flat. So thanks to daylight savings, I'm not walking in the dark at all.

The instructor was Andrei and he was fabulous, big smiles and all energy in that really supportive way. Not obnoxious "go go go!" pushing at the right moment and slowing down at the right moment. I loved the class. The people in this class have so much great energy even though it's a smaller class than my usual week night ones. They hoot, they holler, they give it their all. There are two women that do their moves as a mirror so they can feel like they are dancing together. Super cute!

Here is the thing. The studio was so mother freakin' hot. I thought I was going to pass out at one point. I went to the bathroom to wash my face and neck with cold water. I went through my water bottle. I was kind of annoying because I kept asking the other students, "Is it always this hot?" but the moves were fun, and I kept going until ... I swear I thought I pulled a butt muscle. You know that bizarro spot right under your butt shelf? Yeah well, I'm kind of "hobbles" at this point, but I keep going, over analyzing in my head. "Did I pull something? Maybe if I keep going? What if I have to leave? Will I be able to run on Sunday." You know, my usual stupid crap.

Anyways, I try stretching it out between songs and just reduce my bouncing, if you will and I think I didn't pull something, I just had a butt cramp. That's right people. Wednesday night butt cramps. Gotta love it.

I went home feeling like a better person. Isn't that what it's all about?

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Knitting Class Questions

So, in moments of weakness I daydream about knitting.

No real news right?

Well, there have been some great posts on having more than one project on the needle and still wanting to create something new.

New. Now that would be news. get this, I had an idea ... how about learning something? Crazypants I know.

So I took a looksee at Imagiknit's Current Class Schedule

Things that I want/need:
  • Continental Knitting
  • Fair Isle
  • Sock it to Me!
However I can hear HM telling me "you can figure out socks on your own ..."

I've always wanted to learn how to Continental Knit it looks so ... efficient. I tried to take a Knitting For Speed class at A Verb For Keeping Warm (with the  Y a r n h a r l o t !) But as you can see ... it's sold out and not meant to be (for me).

Fair Isle is just pretty and I am unashamed to admit when someone (littlesnoopy I'm looking at you ...) shows me a piece of Fair Isle, whether a knit dress or a wristband, I have to look on the Wrong Side to see it. And I am always amazed at the good work. How does that happen???

Well, if I took a class ... I bet I could figure it out! Or at least start to.

Look I am definitely not beneath paying someone some hard earned money for some of their hard learned skill sharing. It's about prioritizing. In case you haven't realized, I can't do it all. (shocking. I. know.)

Looking back at the list I realize that I've already prioritized. What do you think?

Smiley Things so far this week.

  1. The indulgent LARGE latte I ordered before getting into the office on Tuesday. It was a spitty morning in San Francisco, and the coffee was the perfect morning hug. A foamy, creamy, toasty and roasty way to begin the day.
  2. The barrette I stuck in my hair this morning had HM tell me I looked "younger" today. This is all in reaction to showering the night before because my son decided it would improve his chances of being on time to school. (Not that we are late all the time, but enough for all parties to be concerned.) By showering the night before, I slept on wet hair, which meant I had muppet hair this morning. Thus the barrette. Boring things often do great things.
  3. Soccer Blogs
  4.  Local columns A pigeon hunting bird called, "Bruce Lee".
  5. The importance of a good pair of sunglasses: Seriously how cute is this?
  6. Rediscovering the Bubbles Baby Blanket crochet pattern. I have a large stash of some Fiesta grey-colored Red Heart yarn that I'm looking at with a good "Now what?" expression. I started using some of it for the Baby Chalice blanket but it doesn't feel right. But for some reason I can't get myself to donate it away. I made a different couch afghan with similar yarn and the whole family is still happy with it. I think it's time to frog the Chalice and find another yarn to try it with. I will give the Red Heart another chance with maybe the Bubbles crochet blanket.

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Family Quotes & Scenarios

"Be good to your mother. You know what she is right?"
"Your sister."
"That's right. So you mess with my sister, you mess with me."

(On disciplining my nephew who loves to push his Mom's buttons. No-one else's like that, just hers. It's a special relationship it is.)

Teaching Independence ...

I bribed my child to stand on the sidewalk outside of Bi-Rite while I did some quick grocery shopping with Creamery twisted soft serve purchased across the street. It was a nice day in the Mission ... I threw in for crushed Newman O's on the top. It went well, we were a team. The kid ate a treat and self-edited. He stopped himself on his own at a very reasonable amount of ice cream. He only had a minor chocolate moustache instead of the full-on beard. I shopped quickly and did not earn any whinging about taking FOR-EH-VERRR.

(first step to independence is personal responsibility -- oo that sounds smart)

Well ice cream makes you thirsty. We weren't smart enough to bring a water bottle to the park that day. I agreed to buy him a small bottle of water. I agreed to buy him a mineral water.

I put my foot down when it comes time to open up. "No, I will not open your water."

"I'm not very good at opening them. These are really hard for me Mom."

"I understand that, however, you have to try."

I pause here for dramatic purposes. I'm really good at dramatic purposes or at least drama.

"Okay let's pretend." I hear that imagination is a helpful tool in parenting and relating to your child ...

"Let's pretend we are in the desert. And ... I'm dead. This is your bottle of water."

He tried. Dear, sweet boy tried. Regardless of my ghost-like existence in this scenario I tried to help him with technique. Stabilize with one hand, twist with the other. Hmm, maybe try twisting in the other direction? Those skinny Minnie arms struggled.

"Well that was a good try. I'm glad you tried a few different things. You almost had it."

When I opened it, it was really lose, the plastic just needed to come off.

"You should've tried a little more." I'm sorry. I couldn't help myself. I hand him the water and he says, thank you and we start walking down the street again.

"Well, I guess we are both dead in the desert." And be both started laughing.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Free Shipping

Okay, I love to babble on about obvious issues that are wrong, and cry "Outrage!" that other people don't do something or say something. (Ahem conservative soundbites much?)

But those things are so political it's often something I just prefer to chat about with my family.

What about things that are non partisan?

You know it wags the finger at me the hypocrite. Everyone knows I like an online shop. I know how I adore the words "FREE SHIPPING".

But at what cost am I getting my goods? Are these people in sweatshop conditions? No. But it's not right the way they are bullied for profit.