Crazy Schedule Mom Club

Yeah… so if you can’t tell, I’m still working on that whole balance thing.

Crazy housewife with kitchen tools

I’ve been running like a mad man. I remember when I first started out with this whole motherhood business, I would see other older moms wearing their crazy mom schedules like a badge of honor. The more they could juggle the better they were. And for some strange reason I couldn’t wait to join the crazy schedule mom club.

I remember looking at those moms and thinking, “How fun will that be? Driving my kids to different activities, having a career, a perfectly clean house, well thought out meals… Ah I’ll be perfect.”

I would look at these moms and be so excited for that time of my life when I no longer had spit up on my tattered t-shirt from my glory days as a high school soccer player, but instead had a polished organized look about me. And along with it I had an organized schedule, an organized career, and children who were unorganized but only in a comedic, commercialized pretend messy way. And instead of wanting to pull my hair out I would just do that commercial mom smirk and shake my head and smile lovingly at my children.

Can we stop there? Because that’s not my life…

Fast forward 13 years. I’m not her. I’m not that woman, I’m still wearing my tattered t-shirt and I’m drowning in maternal expectation.

And to add to the pressure I’ve got more than a hundred other kids, who I didn’t even give birth to, who are relying on me as their teacher.

More times than not this feels awesome, but this week. This week it is not awesome because I just scheduled a knee surgery that is going to take my feet out from under me for quite a while. And the pressure of all of the people who rely on me is getting to me.

Whoa… wait, what?

Lets back up to an incident that happened in late July that I never told you about…

One sunny day I squatted down next to Penelope to help her pull up her pants, or wipe off her face, or tie her shoes (I don’t remember which) and when I stood up I did something weird to my knee. I tried to walk it off but couldn’t walk.

This is when I first slowed down on blogging by the way. I was really bummed out by the fact that I had such a stupid knee injury and I was just waiting for it to go away so that I could carry on with my regular blogging schedule without whining like a big baby.

Two weeks later and I was still limping. Two months later and I was still feeling the pain. I haven’t been able to run since and even walking sometimes was even painful. I’m a Girls on the Run coach this year at my school and was extremely irritated at not being able to run with the girls.

The pain never went away but started to manifest in weird ways. It started to shoot down my leg and radiate out of my big toe. My knee cap felt like it was always on the verge of dislocating. (In high school I had a soccer injury when this happened a few times and after being told there was nothing they could do I finally had to quit.)  This constant feeling of anxiety was making me terribly irritable. My husband started to call me the lion with the thorn in his paw from Aesops’ fable.

At my first doctor’s appointment I was told that my knee was completely unstable and that the only thing holding it together were my leg muscles. (Thank you squats from yesteryear.) She thought I had torn ligaments either during my first injury in high school or this summer pulling up Penelope’s pants (I’m such a badass.)

But after an MRI, some x-rays and a visit with an orthopedic surgeon I discovered that it’s not that simple. My tibia bone is attached to my knee at a bad angle pulling my knee cap and all of that other good stuff with it. The only solution is to saw into my tibia bone, pull it over into the right position and then screw it back in. It can take up to a year to fully recover…


Do you know how many pity me cookies I’m going to be tempted to eat during that time???

I can’t bend my leg or put any weight on it for 6 weeks and I can’t go back to work for at least three. I would wait until summer to do this but we’ve met our deductible, so I need to get it done before the end of the year. Plus, I can’t go any longer thinking my knee cap is going to pop out at any minute.

I’m terrified, I live in a split level house, this means I have to go upstairs if I need to pee, down stairs if I want to eat and even further downstairs if I want to relax and watch tv. How will I be able to put on my pants by myself, get out of the shower, carry a cup of hot tea? I won’t be able to pick up Penelope or pace around my classroom to make sure the kids are actually paying attention to me. It’s my right leg so I can’t drive, and Brent is gone a third of the time and can’t afford to take 6 weeks off, even after 6 weeks I won’t be able to chase after a toddler by myself. Getting ready for work in the mornings for the rest of the school year is going to be ten times more irritating than it already is if I can’t quickly go up stairs to get things together…

Now do you see why I haven’t written? I’m a nutcase.

The good news is that I’ll be forced to take time to just sit and relax. The weather will be cool so I can just snuggle under the covers have a tea and pain killer hot toddy and just read. The probability of me getting bored is high so you’ll hear from me a lot I’m sure. In fact, there is a good change that I will be blogging under the influence, so it could get weird.

In the next weeks, I’m going to try to adjust my outlook on this whole thing. Instead of freaking out about it I’ll enjoy the time I have not being completely disabled and spend the rest of the time preparing for whats to come so that I can go through this the healthiest way possible.

A More Effective Quitter

Oh hey… Guess what!

I’m not dead.

Honestly guys, I don’t know what happened. One minute I was stuffing jalepenos in my pants and the next thing I know it’s been nearly two months since my last blog post.

Some of you may not know but I’m a teacher and this year I’m teaching a new grade… again.

So mid-summer I started getting back to work. Since then it has been a juggling balance between spending time with my kids (because the working mommy guilt has set back in) and getting my job done. So the last two months have looked like this…

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There were several times within the past few weeks that I felt compelled to write a blog post. Every time I sat down to write one something else came up. My life has been absolute madness lately. Wildfire season kicked in right about the time that I started working again. Brent has had to work a ton of overtime to cover the guys who have headed out all over the country to fight the wild fires. This week alone he’s on a four day bender.

This blog is a pretty good measure of how much time I’m getting to myself. When I make my health (both mental and physical) a priority I write often. If I’m struggling with making myself a priority the blog suffers.

So… that’s what happened.

In the latter half of the summer I spent a lot of my “time off” moving into another classroom and planning my lessons. I felt guilty when I wasn’t out living it up dog days style, but then I would feel anxious and irresponsible for not preparing for the school year. After spending an afternoon in the classroom I just couldn’t bare to come home and sit in front of the computer to write a blog post while Penelope was begging for me to pay attention to her.

It just felt wrong.

Then school started and the madness really began because Brent was working and I was working…

I’ve been doing a fairly good job of cooking healthy food ahead of time so that I could have healthy lunches. I also rode my bike to school when I could and went for a few sunrise walks with my friend.

One time I actually took the initiative to wake up early and go to a spin class at 5 o’clock in the morning. That didn’t turn out so great…

I came to class pumped up and proud of myself for actually getting my ass out of bed. I positioned myself in the middle of the class where I could see the instructor but wasn’t up front and center. Five minutes into class a lady walked in and hopped on the bike in front of me. Apparently she was meeting a friend. The ladies chatted a bit while we did our warm ups and then they chatted a little louder when the music got louder and then even louder as they really got into what “Pissed them off!” The whole time peddling casually while I tried to listen to the instructor who was telling me to pump up the resistance. Every time the music got loud they got louder. Every time the instructor tried to tell us a witty story during the “down hill” portion they talked over her…

I looked around to see if I was the only one who was irritated by it. By the looks on the faces of the people around me I wasn’t. The instructor was looking at them and I was looking at her urging her to say something… but she didn’t.

Finally after 40 minutes of enduring it I snapped…

“EXCUSE ME!” I blurted out before I actually knew what was coming out of my mouth“Will you please stop talking?” I added in a calmer tone trying to makeup for the bitch that suddenly erupted from my body.

Both women looked back at me and then at each other like I was completely out of line.

“It’s annoying,” I added with finality.

They stopped talking for a while and the other spin class patrons gave me secret smiles glad that someone finally said something. I tried to ignore that it actually happened and get back to my work out but the ladies kept looking back at me and talking about me so that I would hear them in mean girl fashion.

I just stared at them every time they looked around at me all the while thinking, I’m a middle school teacher you can’t intimidate me, I confront assholes on a daily basis.

When class slowed down we were supposed to do stretches. They ignored the stretches the instructor prompted us to do and instead opted for stretches that gave them the opportunity to give me more dirty looks. Finally I had enough and said, “You know, I’m sorry if I came across as a bitch. It’s obvious that I’m not a hardcore athlete, but I woke up at 4:30 this morning to get my vagina murdered by this hard ass seat. And I didn’t do it so that I could hear you bitch about your ex husband.”

They turned around and left me alone the remainder of the time. And I came to the conclusion that it might be best if I didn’t do early morning group fitness…

Despite these efforts over the past few weeks, my pants are still tighter from being in survival mode last year. And they were tight the year prior to that from being in survival mode while I finished my master’s degree and did my student teaching.

I can’t spend my entire teaching career in survival mode while my pant sizes slowly creep up.

Since I’ve started working, my morning runs had slowly been replaced with morning lattes. And when I got home from work my workout clothes were replaced with pajama pants. The weight started to creep up five pounds at first, then ten, then… well, I don’t even know really.

At some point I’m going to have to start from scratch and post my weight with a picture. I haven’t done that yet for three reasons…

1. I’m pretty sure it’s going to hurt my feelings and I will ultimately punish myself for my slip in the health department by gaining another ten pounds.

2. Bridget used to be my before and after photographer. But I don’t feel like it’s a good idea to have her do that anymore since she’s gotten older. Girls are sensitive to these matters and I’m not sure I’m sending her a positive message by obsessing over my weight and then having her take pictures of it.

3. I’m afraid some weirdo is going to steal my before and after pictures again. In fact, I’m pretty sure my face is still lingering out there in google land pushing some weird diet pill. (Still creeped out by that by the way.)

In fact, I was tempted to stop blogging because of it.

BUT I can’t quit writing this blog. I haven’t finished what I’ve started…

I’m one of those people that always wants to quit when the going gets tough, but then I’ll change my mind and decide not to quit.

You could define this as tenacity, but I’m actually more sure that this is just another case of me not being able to follow through properly.

“I quit!… Ugh, nevermind.”


I don’t know what it is, I just can’t stop trying even if I’m really bad at something.

For Example:

I’m horrible at spelling, yet I’ve earned the right as a Language Arts teacher to issue out spelling tests.

I was a terrible student growing up. In fact, I hated school. I quit college twice, once because I didn’t know what I wanted to be and another time to move to Colorado and get married… only to end up going a third time and finishing with a Master’s Degree.

I was a slow reader as a kid and had a hard time getting into books. My eyes used to twitch when I read. Now I’m known by name at all of the local bookstores within a 15 mile radius of my house because I’m obsessed with reading and known by many as a book nerd.

I’m a “weight loss blogger” whose pants are probably two sizes too tight…

Yeah…. we’ve gotta keep working on that one.

You know, life would be so much easier if I was a more effective quitter. OR maybe I’m just really attracted to contradictions.

So, what are we gonna do about it? I’ve seriously got to figure out the balance between life and work. (If you haven’t noticed yet, I’ve tried this several times.) I’m not just talking about balancing time between my students and my kids. That’s important but I’ve also got to throw in focusing on time with my husband, and focusing on myself and developing who I want to be. That’s four things that need to be up in the air at all times and I won’t rest until I learn how to balance them all.

My plan is to write a blog post at least once a week because this is how I check in with myself mentally. In fact, I kind of forget you guys are there sometimes. Hence, some of the awkward blog posts. (Sorry ’bout that.)

Actually losing weight takes focus and I’ve got to actually focus on it… even if I am SOOOOO tired of talking about it. Honestly, I would really like to quit writing this blog, but I can’t until I figure out how to not gain five pounds every time I’ve had a stressful day.

Until then, I guess you’re just kind of stuck listening to me describe the effort it takes to keep my thighs from eating my shorts. Good luck with that.

Jalapenos In My Pants


I’m trying to organize my life, but it isn’t working because apparently I don’t have that skill set.

I can organize other things. Work things. School things. My pantry. But life things… not so much.

I’m like an idiot savant. (I’m not even kidding.)

Take for example my phone. I have no idea where it is right now and honestly I’m not too worried about it communication wise. I’m just concerned about the pictures on it that I wanted to use for this blog post so that I could pretend like I’m one of those bloggers that actually has their shit together enough to make you hate me a little. When in reality I’m just planning on using those pictures to distract you from my short comings (if that’s what they are) by wowing you with photos of my amazing garden because that is something I used to suck at but have some how mastered this year.

I shouldn’t have told you my scheme because it turns out my phone wasn’t really needed since I had already posted those pictures on facebook. I had posted them on facebook so that I could show everyone what a wonderful mother I am. You know, watering my garden, playing with bubbles, stuffing home grown jalapenos in my pants…


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It’s beautiful.

But don’t let it fool you. If you look in my house you will see that I have maxi pad “stickers” stuck to various pieces of furniture and a bedroom door that is locked from the inside with no one on the other side to unlock it.


I’m not sweating it though because I have long mastered the art of jimmying every lock in the house open thanks to YouTube… and Penelope’s penchant for locking doors and then shutting them. (Thank you hoohoohoblin, you have been invaluable to me.)

I was so excited to spend time with my kids this summer but now I’m over it. Teens and Toddlers don’t mix. They’re driving me crazy and that might make me a shitty mom for actually saying it out loud. But you know… it is what it is.

On a daily basis I have to endure a mashup of the Mickey Mouse Clubhouse theme song and a Spotify Five Seconds of Summer Play list playing in the same room at the same time. All the while both of my kids are talking to me at the same time about two different things (Penelope: “I want milk! Mom, I want milk! Mom, Mom, Mommmmmy! I want milk!” Bridget: “Chemical Romance’s concert tickets are only fifty dollars… I want to get my nose pierced. Izzi said it would be cool…”

Then I will have to tell Penelope that no she can not stick her finger in the pencil sharpener while I pour her milk (too late… shit where are the bandaids?) and Bridget that no she can not wear those shorts to Izzi’s house (because they look like underwear) and both of my children will simultaneously let me know how displeased they are with me in their differing but equally annoying ways (Penelope: “Mommy I don’t like you. Go away.” Bridget: huffy-breathsullen-glance-eye-roll-silence).

I can’t take it anymore.

Honestly, I just want a moment to hang out with me. Just a moment. It could even be in the bathroom… pooping… without someone talking to me through the door crack.  Or maybe even just a conversation… talking in the mirror and enjoying how hilarious we are together, the reflection and I. We’ll ignore the sounds of my children as they waft under the door, toddler whining and teen whining so alike yet so different, and we’ll just spend some time together. Me and I looking into each others eyes and not at the blonde mustache that seems to gleam on my face now that I have a tan. ( I should really get that thing waxed.)

We’ll just. Be.

It’s my dream vacation.

Yet, at the same time I feel so guilty about it. I’m coming to terms with the fact that summer is almost over (teacher standards). I have to pay attention to emails again and plan lessons again and move classrooms again. And I’m really excited about it and yet I feel bad for welcoming it. I have less than a month left before I have to go back to work for good, and a stark realization has hit me…

I haven’t done any of that healthy stuff for me that I had planned on doing over the summer, aside from the occasional vagina killing class spin class, a few sessions of yoga and a salad. Instead, I got lost in the art of taking care of my kids.

Weight loss has not been a priority because honestly I didn’t want it to be. I didn’t want to commit to it. I wanted to just hang out with my kids. I was busy not having a schedule and committed to being non-committal. Then there was also that whole business of me not hating myself enough to create an urgent need for a whole “Overhaul Yourself” Campaign. Because let’s face it, those are usually triggered during times of self-loathing.

Unfortunately, this summer I’ve been pretty okay with myself. Don’t get me wrong, I am seriously flawed but I am TOTALLY okay with that… and that makes it really hard to find the motivation for any kind of self-growth.

I’m not sure that’s a good thing. In fact I’m pretty sure that’s arrested development.

I’m developmentally arrested due to my high self-esteem. 

What the hell does that even mean?  <—- (That’s not a rhetorical question.)

But I guess the time has come, before I know it another school year will be upon me and along with it other stresses. I needed to mentally get to a good place. I’ve done that and now it’s time to get there physically. That requires, organization… which also requires communication… which means, I might need to find my phone.

Where is that damn thing?

That leaves me with the ultimate debate…

Should I get up and look for my phone some more OR I should watch another episode of Girls because it’s too inappropriate to watch with kids around and I’ve finally found myself alone in the house during a time of the day that isn’t meant for sleeping?

You know what they say…


Yeah, I know! I know that’s not what they meant… but I’ll take what I can get.

Typed While Snacking on Graham Crackers

Is it really Friday already? Where did the week go?


We spent our Fourth of July in Breckenridge with family from out of town. Normally we just drive up for the parade and head back in the same day, but this time we all rented out condos and stayed for the weekend. Our first stop was at the fire station so that we could go on bucket rides on the ladder truck. (Perks of being married to a fire fighter.)

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We spent the rest of the weekend participating in the parade/ Independence day festivities…

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… and just simply enjoying the mountain town atmosphere and each other’s company.

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(Oh yeah, and the bubbles… you’re never too old for bubbles.)

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Unfortunately, Penelope came down with a fever and ended up puking all over our bed during our stay. By the time Monday rolled around the rest of us were coming down with Penelope’s cold. Our out of town family had already left so the girls and I dropped Brent off at work before having a breakfast picnic and heading back down the mountain.


As we made our way down we descended into gloomy rainy weather that didn’t let up for three days solid.


The temperatures were in the 60’s but it was a welcome reprieve since we all fell victim to Penelope’s cold. Soup was on the menu and snuggling/Netflix was the only thing on the agenda. With the weather being crappy I didn’t feel too guilty about it. When the clouds finally parted I made my way to the garden to see how it had faired while we were gone and was surprised to see that it had grown a ton in just a few short days!

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This is perfect timing because after enjoying all of the holiday fair my body was craving something straight from the ground.

(Typed while snacking on graham crackers.)


I’m such a hypocrite…

It’s okay though, because I can feel my arm muscles twitch every time I shovel a cracker into my mouth due to an unusually hard yoga class in which I almost suffocated in my own boobs. But that’s a story for another day…

That One Dimple

Insecurity… it’s a weird thing.

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The other day I was at the pool with Penelope in all of my glory eating Cheetos. Yes, Cheetos. (Lack of weight loss Mystery solved.) It was rest period and I was sitting on my damp towel in a less than flattering position crunching on my snack when I decided to take the opportunity to people watch.

Watching half-naked people in a public setting could very well be one of the most interesting social experiments you can conduct. You can tell a lot about a person by how they behave in their bathing suit… the way they pull at their suits, the positions they insist on lounging in, the way they hunch their shoulders or arch their backs… very telling indeed.

But the thing that stood out to me the most was the universal fact that nobody really cares how YOU look in your bathing suit. Pool patrons are mostly just concerned about how THEY look. Nobody is looking at you and judging you. In fact, people probably appreciate you more if they look better than you do. Because let’s be honest, we’re all a little bit self-centered like that.

Later the whistle was blown and it was time to get back into the pool. I sat in the shallow end with Penelope within earshot of a gaggle of women, all of whom looked fantastic in their bikinis. I was wearing my sunglasses and was secretly scoping them out. Divying up which of their body parts I wish I had… I’ll take her boobs, her butt, and her flat abs. As I was admiring these women I could hear them talking among themselves. The conversation turned to insecurities. “Ugh I hate the cellulite on my butt. I have this ONE dimple that doesn’t go away no matter how many squats I do.”

I decided to check it out. Sure enough she had a dimple. I hadn’t noticed because I was too busy admiring her stomach from where I was sitting. Then I thought about it some more and it dawned on me that we all have insecurities because we are all imperfect. It’s how we approach those imperfections that determines how insecure you are.

It was a shame that lady had such a rocking body but she couldn’t enjoy it because she couldn’t see past that one flaw. Then I looked at myself and all of the things that bother me about myself and I decided that the same rules applied to me as well. Later that day I decided to go shopping for some summer clothes. I’ve been avoiding it because I’ve gained a little weight since last summer.


So far, for the majority of the summer I’ve been feeling pretty good in my skin. Then I went shopping and couldn’t find anything that fit right and BAM! I turned into an epic asshole to myself. I talked myself down and convinced myself that there was no use in trying to shop anymore because nothing would fit. (Apparently I wasn’t only an asshole but the middle school bully version of myself as well because I was pretty dramatic about it.)

This only lasted for a day because realized I was being stupid. So I went back to doing my summer thang…


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Bike Riding…


Having picnics at the park…


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Waking up early to go running…


Picking flowers…


and eating yummy food…

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It didn’t take long to feel better about myself.

Insecurity ebbs and flows. Somedays I could give a shit what people think of me because I think I’m pretty great. Then I’ll be a complete asshole to myself and talk myself down.

Throughout writing this blog I have discovered that there is something empowering about not giving in to the urge of talking down to yourself. I find that time is much better spent simply enjoying where you are in the moment… flaws and all.