‘Twas the Diet Before Christmas… ~ Alexandra

christmas sweater

This was my plan for this year’s season of gluttony. Something I proudly came up with by myself. It’s called pre-weight losing, patent pending.

My idea was to hit the Foodtober holiday months down 10 pounds, to be at my fighting weight… ready to fight the inevitable weight gain of parties, gatherings, food events and 500 calorie drinks. Enter the ring swinging, get it? Not exit it arms whirling as I try to wrangle my ass into clothes that fit just fine in October but not the months of Foodtober.

It really bugs me to have a big butt for the sole reason I hate wearing clothes that are uncomfortable. That’s the only reason right there. The binding seams, the zippers digging into my flesh, the buttons leaving their imprint down my stomach so I look like Frankenstein. I just can’t deal with the discomfort. And having nothing to wear drives me crazy. And so does not being able to find anything to buy to wear. I mean, at my pre-foodtober weight there are things to wear, but the after holiday bloat weight… nope. After the 18 months it’ll take me to lose these ten pounds that it took ten minutes to put on, I’ll find stuff… but now, what designer wants me advertising their wares across these buns? “Hey! Dying to look like this? Buy our pants!!” I don’t think so.

Also on the list of my weight gain peeves is the way I look like I shoved a pillow down the back of my pants, like I used to do in high school. Except this time I’m not doing it for laughs. My kids think I am and pull out the camera, “Mom! You’re so funny! Let me get this on film!” Turn around and knock over that lamp again!,” but um no, kids… there really is no pillow back there. [Read more...]

Ten Signs You’re This Side of Middle Age ~ Alexandra

signs of middle age

Middle age, halfway through your life. Suppose you live to be 72, divide that in half, and 36 is your middle age. Sounds so young, and yet… you’re not.

You can do the math to figure out if you’re on this side, or that side, of middle age – or take this comprehensive quiz for the answer.

1.  The summer headbands advertised on your Facebook sidebar look adorable on the 18-year-old model, but make you look like Crazy Mary who used to sweep the bridge downtown during rush hour.

2.  Red fingernail polish and red lipstick may be in style, but on you they’re Cruella Deville.

3.  When you walk down stairs in the morning you hear the sound of popping popcorn from your knee area.

4. There was a time when a tankini and skirted swimsuit did the trick, now a berka is required.

5.  While grocery shopping you blissfully hum along with and skip to the piped Muzak version of “I Got You Babe” by Sonny and Cher. [Read more...]

Memories of my America – Of Liberace and The Hope Diamond

hdColombians are prone to embellishment, to taking a story and making it even grander. It was Gabriel Marquez, the famed Colombian novelist, who proclaimed, “To Colombians, life is a stage.”

My mother has entered a delightful stage of dementia. Delightful in the sense that her already Colombian tales of life have become even more entrancing. We pick her up on the weekends, and she spends the day at our house, where my three boys and I spread her favorite blanket across her lap, much like a ceremonious draping of an ermine wrap across a queen’s shoulders.

We settle her in with Mexican cocoa — hot chocolate with a pinch of cayenne — which she sips slowly, blowing softly across the steam, and when she leans forward to set her mug down, we know we are about to hear, The Theatre of The Colombian, Part Six; where she will pick up where she left off, when she was here last.

“You know,” we all turn to see what she will floor us with today. “I had to say no when Fidel Castro asked me to marry him. Yes, he acted one way in front of our government, but I knew… he was not going to grow into a nice man. And look, I was right.” My mother reaches for her hot cocoa, blows and sips, sets it down, and begins again. [Read more...]

A Child’s Guide To Increasing The Likelihood of Getting What You Want For Christmas by Alexandra

1.   Don’t fight.

2.   If you do fight, fight in hissy whispering.

3.   Don’t sass

4.   If your mom asks you if you sassed back, say “No, ma’am, I was just clarifying.”

5.   Don’t hit.

6.   If you do hit, hide it like you were walking past your brother or sister and tripped.

7.   Even if it’s hard, mind your own business.

8.   If you don’t mind your own business, tell your parents you were just worried about your sibling’s safety. Because you love them.

9.   No name-calling.

10.  If you do name call, say you meant it as a term of endearment. “Oh you little poopyface. I love you.”

11.  No swearing.

12.  If you do swear, blame it on your parents losing their hearing. “Mom I did not say I hope he gets his ass destroyed. I said, ‘I hope you get your asteroid’ for Christmas.”

13.  Do your homework every night.

14.  If you don’t do your homework every night, pretend to be holding your U.S. History book open on your lap, with your Nintendo hidden inside.

15.  Try new foods your parents make for dinner.

16.  If you don’t like the new foods, spread them around on your plate so they look like less and then say “Boy that was so good I just wish I hadn’t eaten a whole bag of popcorn at school right before you picked me up.”

17.  Do your chores.

18.  If you don’t do your chores, make it look like you did your chores–keep the area under your bed as a free space so you can jam your toys, books, clothes in there at the last minute.

19.  Don’t lie.

20.  If you do lie, say all the double negatives in your parents’ question mixed you up. You meant to say you did NOT not not do it.

21.  Take a shower, brush and floss, comb your hair, change your underwear, make your bed, and be polite. If you don’t take a shower, get the shower door wet. If you don’t brush or floss, get the toothbrush wet and leave a string of floss on the counter. If you don’t comb your hair, leave a brush sitting next to the sink. If you don’t change your underwear, just put a ball of clean ones in the laundry basket, if you don’t make your bed, just throw the top blanket over everything like you’re going on a picnic.

22. You can’t fake the Be Polite — Hold the door open for everyone, say Happy Holidays to everyone, smile at everyone.

Just forget numbers 1 through 21. Do only number 22, and you’ll win your parents’, your grandparents’, your teachers’, and your siblings’ hearts for the holidays.

 

AlexandraAlexandra

Alexandra is an overanalyzing, oversensitive mother of three boys who somehow found herself named as BlogHer ’11′s Voice of The Year for Humor. She has been a mother since 1994, which means she hasn’t been right about anything since. She blogs of the sweet and the funny while trying to go unnoticed in her small town. You can find her at Good Day, Regular People. Did we mention socially awkward? We should, which is why the internet was made for her.

Memoirs of My America – When is Dressing Stuffing?

Thanksgiving is meant to be a celebratory time, of when the Pilgrims were helped by the Native Americans and there was a horn o’plenty of food. It was a good harvest, and along with eating there were three days of games and social cooperation. Peace among the people, eating together and sharing alike. No one cared that you called it corn and another called it maize. The feast was delicious and it filled your belly; and it was a time that would go down in history.

Giving of what you have to others should bring out some warm fuzzy feelings of love for one another. And Thanksgiving can do that, except when someone reaches across the table and asks another to “pass the dressing, please.” And that person a few chairs down sends a bottle of Wish-bone Green Goddess back their way.

“Excuse me, I asked for the dressing.”

“Right. And so there you go–dressing.”

“No, the dressing. The side dish there, the savory croutons drowned in butter. Please.”

“That would be stuffing. You want stuffing.”

“No, it’s dressing. My mother called it dressing. Pass the dressing, please.”

“Dressing is salad dressing. That’s what I gave you. If it’s stuffing you want, I can give you stuffing.”

“I don’t call it stuffing. Stuffing is made inside the bird. This was made on the side. I’d like that bowl of dressing that was made outside of the turkey. Please.” [Read more...]

Memoirs of My America – Dream Whisperer

One of the very first things we had to do when we woke up as little children, was to find our grandmother and tell her our dreams from the night.

She mentally had the Field Guide to dream interpretation as the backdrop of her mind. My Abuela knew it all; the meaning behind the color of the dress you wore, or whether your hair was loose or pulled tight. You’d present the facts, she’d pose a few questions back to you, and there you’d have it: what your subconscious was trying to tell you.

I’m lucky enough to still remember some of her interpretations and now it’s my children who come to the breakfast table and in between spoonfuls of Frosted Flakes, tell me about the mouse in their dream that tried to come in through the wall behind their bed.

I always begin with the first line of action: information-gathering. [Read more...]

Memoirs of My America – The Power of The Bean


I always knew what I had.

Coffee, Ahhh, from that first palate burning sip. The perfect drink. Black gold. Brings you up, yet calms you down.

Like a good Colombian family, our day began with a silver pot percolating. In fact, I received my own first percolator at age three; my Spanish grandmother would fill it with the real bean, and my brother and I would sit and slurp up the steaming sweet smoothness. We would masterfully stir in the cream until it was the perfect caramel brown. We just knew how much cream to add, it’s part of the Andean DNA we came with.

Since age three, I have known of the power of caffeine. I have forever understood the coffee jokes, I got them – I’d even poke fun at my own left twitching eye. [Read more...]

Cheeeken in a Can and Butter Cookies

BITE ME! Food and Whine on FnS

My mother was a fancy lady. She never cooked, nor cleaned, nor kept up a home. She had grown up in South America, with “servants.” That’s the word she used for the help they had around her house. They had a servant for bed making, sweeping, cooking, market shopping, and small child watching. They even had one to feed my older sister’s pet howler monkey.

When she moved to the United States, that all had to stop. No maids here, but at least there were appliances. Still, the shock of do-it-yourself life along with the unwilling attitude on her part to have to learn how to do for herself, birthed a lot of meal time horror stories.

She couldn’t cook worth a lick. [Read more...]

The Most Handsome Man in Milwaukee

I wish I could tell you that throughout my life, I have made only wise, non impulsive, emotionally free decisions.

Ha!

There have been decisions made where I had no other choice, where life decided them for me, or where I did the best I could do at that time.

And there have been the decisions where, having made them, we can call ourselves graduates in the school of hard knocks: Lessons Learned The Hard Way 101.

Nothing brings these technicolor flashes of memory of some of the things I’ve done to the forefront of my mind, quicker than a blast from the past song on the radio.

While driving from one place to the next one day, with my three children in the car, the radio on good and loud in celebration of summer, Funky Cold Medina snuck on and slapped me between the ears like a wet fish.

I had to stifle my laughter as that awesome three beat intro began. I did not want my three baby boys in the car to ask, “Mom? What’s so funny?”

Because then I’d have to tell them the story of when I decided to try and get the The Most Handsome Man in Milwaukee, to like me. [Read more...]

Memoirs of My America – Chewbacca’s Daughter

by Alexandra

Enter our FnS contest to win a free copy of My Memories fun and easy to use digital scrapbooking software! UPDATE – We have our winner, Francerants!

I was not a good looking kid. Not an ugly one, just one that should there be a talent scout for Models R Us hanging out at the local mall, they wouldn’t be pushing their way through a crowd to get their card to me.

My arms were just as long as my legs, and both were like sticks. And, as true today as it was back then, my feet were too big for my height. With the flat black Sponge Bob shoes my Doctor told my mother I had to wear to fix my pronated gait, I looked like a capital letter L.

I was skinny with eyes that took up half my face. The cherry thrown on top of this flamboyant creation by Mother Nature, was that I was hairy. Eyebrows that began everywhere and extended to my temples, hairy arms, hairy legs, and a hairline that begged for a Ronco at-home electrolysis kit. Had you shown me a picture of Chewbacca back then, I may have very possibly shouted, “Daddy!”  [Read more...]