When Peacocks Attack

13 04 2012

OR what really happened that fateful day….

It was the winter of our discontent (sorry, Dicken’s humor)  that spring day when the kids had just finished horsemanship lessons.  The fact that the 3-year-old is even taking horse lessons is a story for another time….but I digress.  The children had just wound down their riding with some time on the trampoline and were putting their shoes back on when a beautiful peacock wandered over from the neighboring farm.

He was beautiful.  The tall blue bombshell came within arms reach (not my short t-rex arms, but arms of normal length) of us and soaked us in with its curious eyes.  We quietly oooo’d and ahhhhhh’d at its gorgeous blue sheen and the tiny feathers sticking off the long bare sticks at the top of its head.  Oren hypothesized about its webbed feet and we debated the swimming abilities of our delightful companion.  It slowly paced around us, admiring our shoes, our funny haircuts.  Elliotte asked me if she could pet our new pal.  I said no.   And then it happened..our lovely fellow made the cutest of coos.  Of course, he wanted to be friends, so we cooed back.  He cooed. We cooed.  He cooed.  We cooed.  It was a moment of magic and mystery.

The peacock then started another loop of adoration.  As it drifted dreamily around us, our sweet Elliotte rose slightly from her crouch and in that split second we relived the scene in Jurassic Park where that crazy bird dinosaur turns from cute to deadly.  As I grabbed Ell, that nasty little bugger dropped a shoulder and charged the 3-year-old, jumping at the last second and kung fu peacocking her in her tiny face.

It was horrible. The entire side of her face was red and raw from the giant webbed grotesque bird foot.  Her cries of injustice.  It was horrible.
She awoke the next morning with a CPS worthy black eye and swollen cheek.

All I can say is, watch out peacocks, I think she is out for revenge.  And geese, I wouldn’t even think about it.

And I think we have to scratch Jurassic Park off the list for a good long while.




So, lets talk about last year….

1 01 2012

So, 2011 started of crazy, we moved, I was really really fat – no, flat out obese, and sadly out of shape while leading an outdoor experience class.  It was sad.  I was sad.  But, as things do, things changed…a LOT.  I think the one moment that changed it all (which is always a culmination of many many moments thoughts and spasms) was a casual conversation with a friend about baby weight. I joked about how I had some baby weight to lose from my last pregnancy nearly 3 years prior and she  laughed and laughed cause it was such a good joke that all this weight could be blamed on an event so long ago.  I mean, she laughed really hard. Really hard.   Don’t get me wrong, I laughed too, because it seemed like the right thing to do. There we sat laughing and laughing. Meanwhile, my baby was getting pretty near ready to start preschool.  Hmmm.  I mean, without this conversation I can see myself with 20 year old baby and 150 lbs of baby weight. I hadn’t been kidding.  I sort of believed it.  HA!  I mean, of course I pretended that it was so funny, but inside I was thinking that people would see this tiny baby with me and excuse my excess belly.   SO, I literally thought about this conversation for a week and then jumped on the one diet trend I had never tried (cause, frankly ANY diet will work if you stick to it). Inspired by the perpetual success of a friend, I started South Beach and immediately felt better than I had in AGES.  And, of course, I lost weight.  It was awesome. 

In June my work world was ripped apart as I was transferred out of the bubble I had worked in for 6 years and into a site much closer to home.  I hated the idea of it, of not working with my beloved students and colleagues, but I LOVE change.  LOVE IT!  So, I was conflicted.  Either I could wallow around in self pity, which I did for a minute, or I could embrace the changes, shorter commute and new adventures.  Well, okay, I did both.  On top of that, I decided to take advantage of my shifted schedule and sleep time and I bit the bullet and decided that instead of running a few spotty days a week, I was going to run every day.  Yeah, I know, seems excessive, but I figured: 1.  horses run every day, so I should be able to, right?  and, 2. if I did it every day, it would be less optional, and it was.  I have never had such an easy time sticking to a work out regime.  Every morning I was up and on the treadmill at 4:45.  I chose 4:45 because as much as everyone says “make time for yourself” the reality of working full time and having two small kiddos at home doesn’t really allow for regular “making of time” in the midst of homework, cleaning, food preparation, etc…(okay, perhaps not SO much time was devoted to cleaning either).  But it worked out beautifully, I got my workout in before anyone woke up, even letting myself sleep in till 6 on weekends.  I felt AMAZING!  Except for the occasional mornings where a pink clad cute thing would find her way into the garage and bring the whole thing to a halt. 

So, here I am, about 30 pounds down with a actual consistent diet and workout regime and I also happen to love my new co-workers nearly as much as my old ones.  PLUS several of my students followed me to the new site, which made me feel right at home.  The only downside to this point in the year was the perpetual back pain I have always borne with the pride of a well busted woman, became a constant and horrific companion due to my daily running (I guess that is the one thing horses don’t have to deal with).  So, my doctor and I discussed a procedure that I was first referred for in my teens.  Yep, I was referred to move from a Dolly Parton in the direction of a Gwyneth Paltrow, and I can’t even tell you how excited I was.  However, that was in August.  The procedure would not be  booked until December 30th. 

A lot had happened between my referral and my surgery ,most note-able was that my awesome grandfather died quiet unexpectedly.  It was pretty awful, but he had a FANTASTIC life, so the celebration is in that he lived it to the fullest to the very end (Love you grandpa!) AND I managed to drop a total of 50 pounds.  We also got to enjoy Disneyland as a family with my brothers and sisters and all the nieces and nephews thanks to the Christmas present from my parents.  So riding the high of It’s a Small World, I went into surgery on the 30th full of anxiety and cold feet.  But the second I found out my anthesiologist’s name was Dr. Mystery (I’m sure that isn’t how it is spelled, but please don’t pop my bubble) I knew it would be fine.  That and I was assured by many that my Dr. was the best and had done  the procedure on many of the nurses at Sutter.  And all went well, and immediately I can breath more easily – an unexpected bonus to the surgery.

SO, 2011 ended with a whole lot less of me.  I feel accomplished.  I don’t recall what my resolutions were for last year, but I’m sure they involved losing weight (SUCCESS!).  My first resolution of 2012 is to dress better – mostly because I am now in desperate need of a new wardrobe comprised of clothes that actually fit me.  Tomorrow is my big unbandaging and from that point forward I can get a better idea of what this new year will have in store for me.  Until then, I am thankful for all the friends and family who have so richly blessed my life and laughed at my jokes or just laughed with me when laughing needed to happen.  Good luck in sticking to whatever silly thing you choose to accomplish in 2012!    

Marshmallow Sized Hail

9 06 2009

...would like to issue a sever weather warning for....With the amazing electrical storm we had recently, I have a confession it is time I make.  I have a certain fondness for severe weather alerts from the National Weather Service.  When the airwaves fill with that staticky hum, and that familiar voice that is part computer and part computer nerd enters my presence, my Pavlovian response is fast and furious.  I hunker in, salivating for the eager descriptions of golf ball sized hail and lightning sure to cause loss of both life and property.  I don’t know if it is the delivery, the list like presentation of both facts and possibilities, that makes me crave it more than a 30 something craves a Twilight novel.  It might be the presence of vivid imagery such as “RAMPANT FLOODING’ and “FIST SIZED HAIL” that captivates my inner English Major, like a long lost brother admitting to stealing my essays and using them in his English classes for better grades because the teachers expected less.   But I digress.

Its not funny.

2 05 2009

I’m pretty sure I am alone in this sentiment, but I really don’t like comedians.  There is just something about the fact that this person, this stranger, is trying to make me laugh that offends me.  I don’t find them funny at all, and, beyond that, I find them rather irritating.  The really bizarre thing is that I LOVE to laugh.  I laugh frequently, loudly and with very little provocation. 

  Clearly it is stemming from my own arrogance.  I am so capable of making myself laugh, that I  know that others aren’t nearly as skilled as I in doing it.  Nobody can make me laugh like I can – let alone a total stranger.  In fact it is not only rude that they are so presumptuous, but offensiveness that they think I should pay them.  I don’t even pay myself. 

But maybe I should.  I mean, if these comedians are getting rich making other people laugh, shouldn’t I get rich making myself laugh?  Is there money in being a self comedian?  Of course, part of me fears this might actually be an affliction.  And you can’t quite go to parties and answer “I make myself laugh” to the question “What do you do for a living?”.

On a side note…I absolutely love mimes.

They Don’t Know

21 04 2009
Used with permission but permission might be revoked when he reads the blog.

Used with permission but permission might be revoked when he reads the blog.

So, it has always bothered me that stupid people don’t really realize they are stupid.  I mean, you would think that you might notice when you make the same horrific mistakes, or are so consistently wrong, right?  But, nonetheless, they never, ever seem to know that they are so lacking in the mental capacities.  When you encounter Joe Public doing incredibly stupid things or saying completely ridiculous things with the full passion and confidence of a rocket scientist, Joe never thinks twice that perhaps his opinion is best kept to himself.  His authority is based in the ridiculous.  (Not to limit this to Joe Public, Joan Public has no idea she is an idiot either)

This terrifies me because, while I would never admit it to anybody, I kinda think I’m smart.  I might even be brilliant.  You see my problem?  I  DON’T  THINK  I’M  STUPID.  And, yet, I am KEENLY aware of this odd juxtaposition of lacking intellect and confidence.  Hmmmmm.  In fact, just posting this indicates a high opinion on the matter.  So, just maybe, I am….no….not possible.  And you, you aren’t immune.  You probably don’t think you are stupid either, right?  How do you know?    Who is qualified to tell you?  I mean, every stupid person you’ve ever encountered probably thought exactly the same as you do.

I think the second you don’t think you are stupid, you are at risk of possibly being so, right?  Of course….you are reading my blog….and we’ve already discussed how I am smart, possibly brilliant.  You must be equally (or nearly equally) smart as well.  So, I think I’ve solved it.  Stupid people never know they are stupid, but smart people definitely know when they are smart, possibly brilliant.  Solved. 

Next, I think I will explore how arrogant people never know they are arrogant.

(for the record, my husband’s photo was not used because he is stupid – although he does not think he is – but rather because of the face he is making – it is not his real face, and is not frozen like that despite rumors to the contrary.)


19 04 2009

custom-edit-1782I love hiking.  Seriously love hiking.  It is different with kids though.  Hiking yesterday at this huge park with miles and miles of gorgeous trails, streams, turtles, hidden waterfalls was amazing.  The only problem is that apparently Oren takes more after Clay than me in his love of nature.  I’m not sure which of the two was more miserable.   

I’ve read that kids these days don’t have enough exposure to nature.  I feel like we’ve done our part by camping, having O play at my sister’s house in the woods, etc..etc..  But he has a lot of anxiety in nature.  From early on in the hike O wanted to be carried.  I think someone must have thrown about the term SNAKE and there were concerns about poison oak – which was more abundant than socks under the sheets on my side of the bed, and lets not even mention the bees.  So, from early on in the hike I had a 40 lb wiggling weight draped around my neck.  This added to the 20lb backpack full of water and snacks, and the heat of the day didn’t set me up for a lot of enjoyment of the geocaching.  But, on the flip side, I was so focused on packing him in and out that I didn’t have time to pay heed to my own bruised feet or sweaty pits.   I was, however, keenly aware when he peed and the breeze blew the over spray onto his own shoe, knowing they would soon be draped again around my neck.  (On a related note – always hike with baby wipes)

In all fairness, Clay, who does not on any level enjoy hiking, packed in the baby in a backpack and packed out little O.  Oren even at one point fell asleep on his shoulders.    Kudos, babe.  Funny, though, how they can be so similar in a matter of preference.  Perhaps hiking is genetic.

Ahhh, the adventures of a caring parent.    That being said, I am now looking into nature remediation.  Any suggestions?  Do I need to buy some lizards, catch some flies, go tadpole hunting?  I think the next step is another round of camping.

13 04 2009