Bridal Shower On A Budget

  • Crusty's bridal shower went off without a hitch. I had an "afternoon tea" theme and chose the colors tangerine and pink.
  • Oprah provided the sandwich recipe. I didn't use the tarragon in the egg sandwiches and no one seemed to care or notice. I also didn't carefully garnish my sandwiches with the parsley and toasted sesame seeds (because who has the time?) so I just sprinkled some over the finished product. These were super delicious and although I don't care much for Oprah, I learned that bitch knows a thing or two.
  • I didn't serve alcoholic beverages during snack time because it was a tea so I had tea put out, but you can't have a shower without some booze. I decided to do a toast with a champagne cocktail. The recipe is easy enough: 1 sugar cube in the bottom of a champagne glass, enough Chambord to drown said cube, then fill the glass with champagne (sparkling white wine for you people that insist on proper terminology). It was a hit with everyone in attendance so Andrea can save it telling me no champagne is delicious.
  • Crusty's mom provided the cookies, lemon bars and shortbread. My mom provided the bacon and swiss quiche with fried onion rings. Husband provided even more traditional tea cookies from Cost Plus World Market. Nothing wrong with asking a couple peeps to chip in.
  • I recommend the website Beau-Coup for favors as they had a wide selection and my order was processed with the quickness. Since we were having a tea, I went with small tin canisters with green tea leaves inside. Made some personalized stickers and voila! A usable and adorable take-away. This was probably the biggest expense of the shower.
  • At the risk of sounding like Martha Stewart, I try to make use of things I have at home so I don't have to spend too much extra money. For the centerpieces, I used some collectible tea cup sets my Gran left me and filled them with some brightly colored flowers. They didn't break the bank and looked really cute on the table.
  • Nothing adds a little bit of color for not a lot of money like balloons and crepe paper.
  • If you really want to get the crowd riled up, tell 'em it's time for games. I chose two but decided to skip the "make a dress out of toilet paper" tradition. The first game I wrote the names of 30 couples and they had to answer what TV show they were on. It was timed. Timed things make people mad. The other game was a word scramble using wedding associated words. Apparently the ladies wanted these words to be naughty. Lesson learned for the next shower.
  • Pictures can be seen here.


Last Haiku of August Haiku Friday

This month sure flew by
One party is behind me
One more tomorrow
Still have to clean house
Got to the market, make food
And then decorate
All while on the rag
And with a sick, needy kid
Wish he could cry more


The Good, The Bad & The Ugly

The Good
  • My period did actually come last night even though it should have been here yesterday morning. That means I'm not pregnant. Holler.
  • Crusty arrived safely on California soil so we get to kick it.
  • A co-worker returned the $50 bill that fell out of my pocket this morning.
  • It's my niece Leigha's birthday and National Banana Split Day.
The Bad
  • I'm not feeling super prepared for Crusty's shower on Saturday.
  • Casey is sick.
  • Seeing Andrea had a case of the sadz.
  • Husband is out of cell phone range (and away from home) until Friday.
The Ugly
  • Casey being sick is gross. Lots of snot and coughing. He also vomited because he was crying so hard last night. It got everywhere, even on me. I stripped him down and had him stand by the bath while it was running and he peed on my foot.
  • The goddamn fruit flies in my house thanks to a plum tree in my yard that drops plums like whores drop them panties. No matter how often I pick up dog poop and plum droppings, the flies remain.


Happy 1st Birthday, Casey

I realized I never told my labor story so I thought today, on the anniversary of Casey's birth, I would share it here. On the morning of Monday August 23rd, I had a checkup with my OBGYN and had expected to hear I was dilated. He said nothing was happening and I have to admit I was mighty disappointed. Apparently he sensed this because he said he was going to stimulate my cervix and went about elbow deep into me and poked around in there. Can you say "Ouch!"? Dr. Cole told us to return just after lunch and he would check on me again.
When we returned, he said there was some softening of the cervix but he said he'd see me next Thursday for a follow up. In other words, don't expect to be having a baby any time soon. Mind you, at this point I'd been on maternity leave for a week already because I was gigantic and I was getting pretty stir crazy. Husband and I went home and I took a long nap on the couch. He was starting to heat up leftover ribs and preparing to make some corn on the cob. At around 5 pm, I was bouncing on a yoga ball and checking the computer when all of a sudden I heard a popping sound.
That popping sound was not the yoga ball; it was my water breaking. I instantly went into this sort of out-of-body zen mode and walked to the restroom to clean up and change into dry pants. We thought we'd have to wait it out and count between contractions but I went into rapid contractions almost immediately so it was off to the hospital with us.
Contractions did not feel good at all. They were like menstrual cramps on crack. We checked in downstairs and it was up to be evaluated. The nurse had the nerve to say "We have to make sure you are really in labor" even though I was contracting all over the place. It turns out I went from slightly dilated to zero cervix in the time I was being evaluated so they checked me into my delivery room and gave me my epidural in record time. Husband, my folks and my brother and sister-in-law were all hanging out with me. By this time it was probably around 7pm or so and nothing was going on.
At around 9, the nurse had me start pushing. Curtis and Frances had long ago gone home. The epidural really prevented me from feeling anything so I imagined what pushing felt like. My "pushing" really wasn't getting the baby moving and after a while the doctor came in and asked me if I was trying to give the monitoring staff a heart attack. I had no idea what he was talking about but apparently every time I pushed, the baby's heart rate fell. He said I had to stop pushing and rest otherwise they were going to have to consider doing a c-section. It was at this point I took a nap. In the middle of my labor. Snores and all.
We decided to start pushing again at 1 a.m. Again, the epidural kept me from feeling anything at all so I really just visualized what I was supposed to be doing. Mom had one leg and Husband had the other. I faux-pushed for a half an hour and Casey Douglas Friday was born into the world at 1:37 a.m. on Tuesday, August 24th. The second they put him on my chest, he took a shit on me. Fecal matter would even stay on my wrist band for a while to come. He weighed 8.1 pounds and was 21.5" long. They kept having to check his blood for some reason or another by poking his itty bitty little foot and that made me super sad because I doubt that was the thing he wanted to feel upon first arrival into this crazy world of ours. All I wanted to was to hold him and never let him go.

MORAL OF THAT STORY: You may forget the pain of labor but you never forget the fruits of it. On my first anniversary as a mother I can honestly say I was incomplete before my son came into my world. At the risk of sounding too Jerry Maguire, Casey completes me.


Casey Tuesday

Hello and welcome to the final installation of Casey Tuesday. He is 52 weeks old today. Today marks the first time I can not refer to him as any months old because tomorrow he will be a one-year old. I will not call him "12 months." That's just silly. The photo above was taken at his birthday party this past Saturday. It was right before he burst into tears when everyone sang happy birthday to him. It was also right before he dove into that cake and was covered in blue frosting. Of all the colors, I'd have to say blue stains the skin quite nicely. My wee smurf.
He was spoiled with so many nice things and so many people came over to celebrate the anniversary of his birth. We're so grateful for everyone who attended and everything he received. He was nice enough to take a nap while the adults ate their food and woke up just in time for cake. Opening gifts really was of no interest to him so he allowed his cousins Amari and Ethan to do that for him. In the middle of the chaos, he grabbed his harmonica and sat on Grandpa Dough's lap. Silly goose.
I'm pretty sure Casey is teething again otherwise he is re-entering the newborn stages of sleep. He wakes often and cries frequently. I'm not a fan. What I am a fan of is that he seems to be interested in Handy Manny, a Disney show that comes on at 6 a.m. He actually watches that show so I can lie in bed and not have to jump right up to entertain him. This is like the first program ever to capture his interest aside from the movie Cars. My boy is going to be a Disney fan just like his mama and that feels real good.
I decided I would stop the weekly Casey updates in the same way that BFF doesn't want to refer to her daughter as x-months old. I feel like you saw him through the fetal process and you've seen him through a year and that ought to do. I'll still bring him up when he does something interesting but I am not interested in making this a mommy blog.
And on that note, I will leave you with a link to our first family portraits and Casey's final installation of his monthly JC Penney Portraits. Twelve photo sessions in as many months, I'm surprised he's not throwing the Zoolander Blue Steel by now. Enjoy!


Monday Numbers

  • We threw our 1st party at the new house on Saturday.
  • It was for Casey's 1st birthday although he doesn't turn 1 until the 24th.
  • About 40 guests came and spoiled my son senseless.
  • BFF & Co. spent the night and we drank 100 beers and stayed up until almost 12 a.m. talking smack around the fire. Love nights like those.
  • On Sunday we took our 1st family portraits.
  • I had bought a pair of size 16 jeans and when I tried to put them on at home, they didn't fit. I had tried on that size in another pair in the store and they fit, but ended up grabbing a different color off the shelf and they didn't fit. So... I have to assume those were cut/marked wrong. Let that be a lesson to you.
  • Yesterday was the 1st day in about 9 months that I didn't have some sort of alcoholic beverage.
  • Even though I have PMS and partied hard all weekend I weighed myself this morning. 210. Unacceptable.
  • I have less than 2 months to fit into a dress I have for Crusty's wedding otherwise it'll be a mad dash to find something that fits in time for the ceremony.


Harmonica Haiku Friday

Prodigy? Thought so!
Casey loves harmonicas
Saw one at my mom's
Got his own last night
Started playing right away
We were all impressed
Not Maria though
He has one at her house too
Plays it all the time


The Good, The Bad & The Ugly

The Good
  • All that's left to buy for Casey's 1st Birthday is food!
  • I got two more "yes" RSVPs for the shower.
  • My wee family now has some nice outfits for our 1st family portrait on Sunday.
  • It's Pay Day.
  • Cindita's ability to give good perspective.
  • Finding out I had rewards points I didn't know about and getting a diploma frame for the price of shipping and handling.
  • Marking items off the task list
The Bad
  • Debt
  • For some reason flies are swarming my house like it's Amityville.
  • Work is slower than cold molasses making for long days.
The Ugly
  • My jeans basically disintegrated yesterday due to excessive thigh chafing. And maybe age. But I think it's the former.
  • Buying size 16 jeans and not being pregnant.
  • FAT
I feel it is my responsibility to go back and remark on yesterday's post that was brought to you by the letters P, M and S.
First, I would like to say it is my privilege to be Crusty's Matron and in no way is throwing her a shower a burden or inconvenience. As a former event planner, the RSVP process is simply the bane of my existence.
Secondly, I am in no way mad at my brother for not attending my son's birthday party. I guess I'm disappointed that he suffers from memory loss but it's fine. He should go to the concert. I, personally, would just never get away with doing something like that. That's all.
Finally, I think I am realizing that mama needs a little bit more "me" time. Sometimes, being the task master in the world of household chores gets tiresome. I don't want to become that wife that barks orders at her husband. I just want shit done. That's all. I think if I had "me" time, I'd be able to decompress. I don't always want to have to be "wife" or "mother" or "daughter" or "sister" or "granddaughter." Sometimes, I just want to be Randi. Not Randi the dog-walker. Just Randi. Headphones on. Taking a long walk. Zoning out. Finding my Zen. I miss my Zen.


High Expectations

I guess I expect a lot from people. Here are some examples:
  • I expected an RSVP to the invitation I sent you that specifically asks for an RSVP by a certain date. Don't respond to the mother of the bride. Don't tell the bride. Call me. I'm the one that would have fed you and/or hosted you in my house. It's my number listed there.
  • I didn't expect to have to follow up with an email that enables you to tell me that you forgot to call. Really?
  • I expected my brother to attend his nephew's first birthday party rather than going to some big ass hip hop concert. Instead I had to shrug it off because he seemed distressed to learn the party was on the same day. Like his wife didn't tell him that already.
  • I expected the trash would have been taken out last night but it wasn't.
  • I expected Husband to still have his curls for our family portrait. Instead he came home with a buzz cut.
The PMS is alive and well in my body today. I knew this was going to happen. It's one of the reasons I was trying to avoid having my son's birthday party the Saturday before I take the ring out. This is why I am writing this instead of yelling at people. God willing, this blog post will keep me from crying and being disappointed. I talk to my mom a lot, you know. Like more than once a day. She knows about all the mundane happenings in my life. The day to day goings on. She keeps telling me "It will get better." I have to assume that at 34 years of age, it's probably not going to "get better." I expect things will stay just about the same until the day I take my dying breath. Amen.

MORAL OF THAT STORY: "Blessed is he who expects nothing, for he shall never be disappointed." - Alexander Pope


Casey Tuesday

Casey is 51 weeks old today. It is the last week of his eleventh month.Next Wednesday, he'll be a year old and I have to wonder if that will be the end of Casey Tuesday. That picture was taken at a party we went to on Saturday night. He ate his weight in Chex Mix so no DNA test needed, I know he's mine. The night before that we went to the fair and I learned that my son is not a fan of livestock but he loves "the sugar." He had tiny donuts, a pretzel, some of my ice cream and some strawberry lemonade. Needless to say, he was high as a kite as we walked to the car, chatted endlessly for about 2 miles and then a mile from the house he fell into a sugar coma. I was able to get him out of the car and completely disrobe him and change his diaper without interrupting his sleep. That was awesome. A couple times now, if he seems tired, I have been able to put him down in his crib without a bottle or rocking him and he falls asleep on his own. I hope this is a sign of things to come. Casey now walks constantly and he loves to pace back and forth across the living room while transporting a toy hither and yon. His new favorite item to play with is an electric toothbrush. I'm pretty sure it feels awesome on his gums since quite a few more teeth seem to be poking through.


Monday Schnippets.

  • Went to the fair on Friday. Didn't go last year because I was too hugely pregnant. This time we brought the baby. We learned that he does not like livestock but he loves sugar in the form of tiny donuts.
  • Learned that wine drunk makes me Randy Randi and beer drunk makes me Crying Randi.
  • Went to a party on Saturday night on the top of the hills in Ventura, the very same place where I used to do cotillion in grade school!
  • Cleaned the house from top to bottom in preparation for Casey's 1st birthday party this weekend and today my arms are so sore I can hardly lift them to answer my work phone.
  • Spent a small fortune on buying decorations for said party on Saturday. I will not be buying my child a birthday present. I wonder if 20 years from now he'll resent that. Food and drinks have yet to be boughten. Yowzas.
  • Got home at lunch today to find that Husband now has a buzz cut. We have our first family portrait scheduled for this Sunday. I'm contemplating shaving my head on Saturday so the two of us can look like a couple of dykes with our curly headed baby boy on our laps. Le sigh.


Insomniac Haiku Friday

I sure miss sleeping
I have a panting doggy
A teething baby
Husband has a cold
Add to that the teeth grinding
And of course snoring
Much tossing, turning
I resort to the ear plugs
Not so helpful though


Casey Tuesday

Casey is 50 weeks old today. It is the third week of his eleventh month. He has begun walking. He likes to make "la la la" sounds like he is singing. If I thought he couldn't sit still before, he certainly can't sit still now. His new favorite thing to do is hold on to the table and walk around in circles. He has also discovered that he can crawl behind the couch and he thinks he is quite clever when he does so. We've pretty much completely stopped giving him baby food. Last night he and I shared some pasta and had ice cream for dessert. Bad idea, ice cream before bed time. Lesson learned. I randomly gave him a straw to try on Saturday and he actually drank out of it. Such tiny milestones that are so exciting to us. As we were pushing him around the market the other day, sitting like a big boy in the grocery cart, Husband remarked that he's like his own little person now. He's got good posture and interacts with people and points at things on the shelf that grab his interest. It's just super neat to think he'll be one in a matter of days.


Southern Comfort

Since we don't get Netflix DVDs in the mail any more, I have resorted to watching movies on the TV... commercials and everything. Thank goodness for DVR and the ability to fast forward through those repetitive sons of bitches. This weekend, our double feature was brought to us by CMT. On Country Music Television, they show about 8 minutes of movie and 8 minutes of commercials. We watched Steel Magnolias and Fried Green Tomatoes, of which I had seen the former and not the latter. I have to say, I really enjoyed Fried Green Tomatoes but there is a lot of sad shit going on in that movie. And were they lesbians? I couldn't figure it out.
I liked that the lead characters in both movies were all strong, older women. In my opinion, while all of them are beautiful women, none of them were unrealistically so. They looked like they could be my neighbor or someone I would bump into on the streets. There was nothing extraordinary about the way either movie looked; not one bit of CG in either of them, no special effects or anything over the top. It was just fantastic storytelling acted superbly by actresses of the finest caliber. Have all the good movies already been made? Will there ever be a movie again that will have a lifetime affect on me like films of the 80s and 90s? Do you remember the way Steel Magnolias CRUSHED you? They just don't make 'em like they used to.


Busy August Haiku Friday

Twelve birthdays this month
And one anniversary
August be crazy!
Yard sale this weekend
Then three parties in a row
One each Saturday!
First, Big Bill's Party***
Then one 'cause Capood turns one
And Crusty's shower!

***We suck because once again we were invited to see our LBC homies and we had to decline. Mother effing Carmageddon and then g'dang prior RSVPs. Grrrr.


Got My Hands Full

There are a lot of things I can do with as a "single mother" but ultimately I get things done a little quicker when I don't have a child in my arms. Last night was trash night so I had to take out some trash and I'd rather not carry the boy with me while I have my arms full of garbage. Most of the time, I'll just run out the door and quickly take care of a thing or two while Casey is distracted by his toys. We have this sliding glass door and because the lock doesn't work on it, we use a metal bar in the frame so that it only opens about a couple inches wide. Most times I take it out of the frame and put it up high otherwise Casey just sits there and bangs metal against metal in an effort to drive me out of my mind.
Yesterday, I did not take it out of the frame and it was just leaning on the sliding door. So what did I do? I just closed that sliding door right behind me so Casey wouldn't end up elbow deep in the dog's water. Lo, the metal bar slid down and I was instantly locked out of my house. Naturally, I ran around front to check the door and, because I am super safe and cautious, it too was locked securely. Did I have my keys on me? My cell phone? No. That would be too easy. So there is Casey, looking at me from inside the locked house as I look back at him locked outside.
What kind of mother am I? How do I explain to the neighbors that I have to use their phone because my 11-month old is locked indoors alone with our huge dog who looks like she could eat you (even if she would merely lick you to death) and countless other hazards? I knew I had stashed a spare key in a cookie jar just inside the sliding glass door on top of the counter but I wasn't sure just how I was going to get at it. Mind you, the crack of the door is about 2 inches wide (if that) but my one arm had to not only fit through, but reach to the right, take off the top of the cookie jar and get into it to access that spare. Long story short, I did it. Of course I did. I'm super mom. And clearly, very flexible.

MORAL OF THAT STORY: He who sows hurry reaps indigestion. - Robert Louis Stevenson


Casey Tuesday

Casey is 49 weeks old today. It is the second week of his eleventh month. His new favorite thing to do is grind his teeth and it makes me want to throw him out the window. He also loves to point his fingers when you are carrying him around like he's some sort of dictator. As far as walking goes, he's not gotten much further than taking about 4 steps at a time and falling on his butt. My Gran says it's because "he's got a heavy ass." God bless her and her 86-year old wisdom. This past weekend Casey and Sasha got to play again. He took his very first trip to Los Angeles to visit BFF and Babe in Culver City. It sure is nice having another baby close to his age within driving distance. I hope they grow up to love one another but right now they're still trying to figure each other out. Today's picture was taken while Mama was driving him to see Maria in the "new" Ford Flex. It rides a lot higher than Vehicular so he likes to look out the window and tell me stories about what he sees. He's laughing because I get in the car and laugh like one of those terrifyingly demented circus clowns and he thinks it's the funniest thing ever. Love my little Capood.


Movie Review Monday

A lot of times I don't care what the reviews say because I like a particular actor or premise or director so I will see a critically panned movie because my gut tells me I might like it. And sometimes I do and I laugh and laugh during my repeated viewings while everyone tells me how much they hated said film. On the same premise, sometimes I will listen to the critics and I'll rent the Oscar-nominated film even if I have no desire to watch it and it will suck. Dinner for Schmucks falls into the former category; well the first part at least. The cast is chock full of funny folks so even though, say, Rotten Tomatoes gave it a 43%, I gave it a shot. And as we were watching this movie I said to Husband, "I sure hope this movie gets funny soon." A little later he said to me, "So when does this dinner happen?" Toward the end, we both said had we seen this in the theater, we would have gotten up and walked out. Why we sat through the entire DVD, I don't know. Maybe it's because it's the last disc we'll be getting in the mail from Netflix until they figure out their pricing and I felt obligated to? Is that it? My allegiance to Netflix? How two Gods of comedy like Paul Rudd and Steve Carell could have signed on to this adaptation of a supposedly well-received French film (Le Dîner de Cons) and the result was this pile of garbage... well I'll never know. They're both lucky they have Anchorman to make up for it. Lucky, I say.