Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Happy Birthday to me: a move & a makeover!

I've finally made the move!

I'm now at: 

I'm very excited to show you the changes.

And to give you a hug. 

Check it out.


Friday, May 24, 2013

Closet Gymnast

Crazy monkeys.

Calamity. strikes. again!!!

[see previous calamities worth posting here and here.]
Maybe it was the fact that mommy was out of commission due to a sex-related, gardening-related, biking-related, potty-training-related?, injury [seriously, I've been dead-lifting them in the middle of the night and placing their drunk a$$es ever-so-gently on the pot] and in my compromised state was not minding the children every second of the day...

But I have to say that before lunch they were actually quite angelic! 
No mess, got themselves some pretzels, etc..

I came downstairs to make them lunch and started watching 
DVR'd episodes of "So you think you can dance". This may have been my downfall.

The little girl started twirling herself down into a puddle on the floor, 
and making up her own adorable version of a grande jete all over the room. 


At about 2 pm I found myself getting frustrated with myself and declared: 
"Ok it's gorgeous out, get your bathing suits on!!"
[the children scurry.]

I think mommy's back could use some good old-fashioned sun-baked-heat.

Boy they are taking a long time up there in their rooms. 


Ok I have time to pull myself together, put on a bra in case someone sees us in the yard...


Now, they are taking TOO long. What is UP.

Walk down the hall to the source of the sound of laughter...

To THIS...

Now, you do not know how my daughter's closet normally looks, but it has had boxes of baby stuff on the top shelf, loads of dresses on the top rack, loads of dresses on the bottom rack, and oh yeah, it didn't have a four year old Olympian monkeying around all three.

And as I tried to explain to my husband, this picture was actually taken after the moment of discovery, which entailed her on the *TOP* shelf, reaching around the lip of the closet opening and trying to grab her purple feather boa. 

You know, the one Grandma got her in N'Orleans. 

When she was 1.

So I hung it up. 

All Fancy-Nancy style, not knowing she would EVER even notice it, much less, climb a mountain for it!!

The little boy is bending down in the photo, trying to gather the small amount of feathers she managed to pluck from it in her attempts to get it down.

And now we are looking into taking additional forms of disciplinary action.


And gymnastics classes.



Monday, May 20, 2013

The "new" Philadelphia Zoo

Spring has sprung and 
with the changes at the zoo it is like new!

Quick & Dirty
  • You can eat healthy at the zoo! I've mentioned this before, but they have expanded the options even further. No more French fries for us!
  • The new children's area is bigger and better and more interactive; give yourself extra time for this.
  • The new parking structure helps but you still have a little walk (which has also been updated & improved), and the crowd control is worth it.
Long & Winded

Speaking of the Parking:
Upon exiting the parking structure, they have added a traffic light and extra turning lane so us Main Line-r's can get directly back on 76 West. This is HUGE. I have never once left the Zoo in the same manner in my prior 4701 visits. 

The walk to the zoo from the garage now has a little rail fencing so the kids can't step onto the street! THANK. YOU!

As for the new Children's Zoo:
You can still pet and brush the goats, but they do not have an option to feed the goats anymore. Just be aware of this if you have promised your children, like I did, that that's what we would be doing...

It was getting a little aggressive, I must say, so that's totally understandable. 

[And they can still feed the ducks, which has also been improved, so the kids can't try to jump into the water like before.]

The new indoor area is awesome! There is actually a space with a couple of tables and chairs if you wanted to bring your lunch and eat inside, and there are extra bathrooms inside this building, as well as directly outside the building but still within the boundaries of the new children's area. So that's a bonus two restrooms!! Very important for potty-ing pre-schoolers. 

There are some Please-Touch-Museum-like interactive exhibits that really got my kids involved. Like, I thought we were at the zoo to see animals, but apparently these are just as cool. 

Including this HUMONGOUS Ant, that you can crawl underneath. Very cool.
 I think my kids were just as excited about 
the new fusion hand-dryers outside the petting area, though. Typical!

The new 'climbing' area wasn't open for us, yet. I've heard it is still not ready for the masses. It did seem a little ambitious - goats are supposed to be going up the stairs, too?? I don't know.

By the way, for the first time, my son got his face-painted!! It was adorbs.

The Healthy Stuff
And for training season this year, y'all know I've been trying to slim up a bit, so I was super excited that they have added even more healthy options to the extra kiosk (walk a little further past the chicken fingers building)!
It may be on the expensive side, but it's just as much as the Chicken Fingers platter, and worth it to have a happy stomach: chickpea salad (which my daughter also loves) and you know I just had to support the Zoo stocking my Coconut Water...

Of course, popsicles from the vending machine will always help a girl get through a grueling, tough, sunny and gorgeous day at the Philadelphia Zoo.

The Jab - The "Block" - The Lesson

I have been so wrapped up in updating the blog to a .com 
that I have been a little remiss on my content. 

*sorry 'bout that*

But I noticed that it's been a busy time for all of us... [half my usual # of hits but whatevs]

I have certainly been remiss on my reading as well. 

But I have something brewing in my heart so, 
as usual, I'll just get it out here and you can help me through it. 

I don't know. I honestly do. not. know. what I did to this woman, but there was a 'jab' of some sort and I must have offended her. 

Because about 18 months into our relationship, about 10 of which included sometimes three-times-a-day gatherings [workout - playdate - night out], she !blocked! me. On the facebook, of course. 

Now, if you have not had the pleasure of being blocked on fb, you don't know exactly what that means: it is not just 'unfriending' this person, but it is to the extent at which you would no longer see them in a search of their name, and if you were in a group together, and they posted, you would not see their postings. If you have mutual friends, and you both commented on a status of that mutual friend - she might see your comment, but you wouldn't see any of hers. I say 'might' because, of course, I have never blocked anyone on facebook, so I don't know how it works from that side of the coin. And of course, there is a certain game of chicken played, because I obviously can't block someone who has already blocked me, so 'she who blocks first' gets the self-satisfying knowledge that the other cannot repay the favor.

It's as if you don't exist in their life anymore. 
[even though you could very well see them at the grocery store]

So whatever gets you through the day...

I don't live my life with secrets. I don't try to be someone I'm not. And I don't hesitate to tell someone how I feel. This has made my transition to in-laws rather difficult [think of my poor sister-in-law], but all of my relationships, and particularly those that truly matter, grow deeper and richer as I grow older.

So a "block" would not be my preferred method of addressing an issue with someone. I don't like pretending. I don't like putting up a wall. Even if I find someone I don't like, or it's clear that someone doesn't like me, I prefer to find a neutral body of water where we can both swim about.

But to each her own. And I must say, I'm glad to not have to 'work' at that relationship anymore; it was exactly that: a lot of work. 

And I learned some very important lessons from this relationship. The best one was, getting up at 5:30 am, running to the gym to meet her, and leaving the morning wake-up call of two infants to my husband. 

Prior to that time I had not spent more than an hour away from my children unless a grandparent was involved. I was extremely locked into a pattern of full-time care for my twins. I did not transition from my career to mommyhood - I strapped on the Nitrox tank and dove deep into 200 feet of murky water and was there for a very very long dive - not knowing what wreckage I would stumble across; what creatures may be lurking; what beautiful and gorgeous sea life I may encounter. 

And I did not come up for air until about three months into this relationship 
with this woman. 

And I am forever grateful.  

The same self-preserving quality it required to block someone, 
is the same self-preserving attitude I needed to incorporate into my life.

Although, that same self-preservation lesson I learned, 
probably led me on a path straight the hell away from her. 

And I am forever grateful.

Friday, May 17, 2013

the Timothy Hutton story [cringe-worthy]

Once, when I was famous, famous people came to see my show. 

I was in a show that ran about three months in the Lower East Side (or was it the East Village? Give or take a block or two.) 

One of the biggest famous people to come see the show (besides David Byrne, who sneaked away post-show before I could stalker-stare at him closer up and not in character), was Timothy Hutton

Encounter #1
He waited around after the show and chatted with the four of us in the cast and told us:
"What you are doing is so important. It's really phenomenal."
He was kinda gushing, I must say...

Of course, I didn't know what the f**k we were doing, it was really just the writer/director who was phenomenal, but I followed up right away with a...
"Oh thank you! I'm a huge fan!"  and a fat blank stare afterwards.
 At least I got that much out! Nothing after. No mention of his films, no mention of his hotness [if you are not from my generation then you'll just have to trust me], no tossing around the idea of some type of follow-up date, or just the fact that I was single...

Oh well. Woe is me. 

Encounter #2
Around the same time frame I happened by him on the street.  Not far from the theater.

It was getting a little more Fall-ish, he was wearing a sexy, beat-up jacket, and not really walking that fast. 

So I stopped him! 

I mean, we're buddies, right?? We're fellow artists.
"Oh hi! I don't know if you remember, you just saw my show. Showy Lady Slipper?"
*blank stare*
"And ...[seeing blank stare] oh, at PS 122?"
He's nice enough to throw me a: 
"Oh yes! Yes." 
"Well I didn't get a chance to tell you how much I love your work, too."
"Oh thanks, thanks" he nods, walks away.
Ok, not-yet-TwynMawrMom, you blew it again. Whatever!! YOU SUCK. Just learn how to shut your mouth after you've missed an opportunity. Just learn from your...

Encounter #3
Ok so you know in the TV show Big Bang Theory, how the character Sheldon tends to irk people with his rhythmic compulsive knocking three times in a row to get people's attention? Maybe even, would do the same thing if he was tapping on someone's shoulder? 

Yes, put that image in your mind for a special part of this story.

Many months later, I was in SoHo, and I happened to walk into the Patagonia store. 

It was winter. It was COLD. So it had to be at least two-three months since my show closed.

But still, if it were important work to you, you'd remember it, right?
I see him from across the room. 
"Oh! Timothy!" as if I'd just been reunited with a close friend.
I am more brazen now. We're like, totally soul mates, meant to be together, and I just haven't given him the right opportunity to ask me out.
"Mr. Hutton?"
He is intensely browsing through a pile of clothes. All the winter clothes we have on, and those stuffed in the racks around the room, are clearly muffling my attempts to get his attention.

I approach him. [oh God, I can't even type this part of the story. This is the last time I'm telling it!!]

I tap on his shoulder. And again. And again, Sheldon Cooper-style. 
"Excuse me?"
 He finally turns around. 
"Hi! I don't know if you remember me but you came to see my show a few months ago, and we talked afterwards, and you mentioned how important it was and I just thought maybe sometime we could get some coffee and talk about it..."
"I'm sorry, what?"
Enter: the girlfriend. Typical supermodel in ski bunny clothing, roaring-laughing in that charming-sort-of-way as she runs over to him from across the store and brings a humongous orange scarf to wrap around his neck and in the same moment lock eyes with him in a new-lovers-sort-of-passion while he laughs and accepts this scarf as if he had just been given a new squishy puppy and goes to kiss her and they literally start to fall over each other onto one of the display tables.

And I: oddly and creepily, watch for a minute, at first confused, as if I had been interuppted mid-sentence and was trying to re-compose the rest of the thought in my mind before continuing but then realize there is no audience for me to continue for, so I: quietly walk away. Try to take an eraser from a chalk board in another plane of existence and erase the words and feelings I just put into the air. 

Try to explain to the person I was with, that we need to leave the store immediately. 

Embrace the cold air outside, allow it to remove the color from my face.

Begin to compose, in my mind, the phrase that I have to. this. day. stuck to, when encountering any celebrity of any kind in any circumstance, no matter the incidence of encounter: 

"I love your work."

Monday, May 13, 2013

To eq or non eq in Philly

So I just want to say a collective "thank you" for all the kind words, texts, emails, and private messages I received about my audition a few weeks ago. You know, the one I was sure I could nail and the one I was sure I was right for. I was so completely touched you all were hanging on the edge with me, waiting to hear. That really means a lot to this old mama!!

Indeed, I totally killed it and felt great about 'leaving it all out there.' I did my job that day. 

It surprised me, because, although I didn't get the callback, and you all were disappointed for me, I wasn't that phased because it happens all the time! Many of you asked me, 'will you hear if you don't get it?' And that's the biz of it - nope; you don't. And that's why I took a six year hiatus from the biz and that's why I'm happy to say it is no longer my primary source of income! It's highly frustrating. It's highly subjective. And it's highly addictive. 

I believe this is why racing has become addictive to me as well; it fulfills the need for adrenalin and recognition. It's the same sweat, the same euphoria at a job well done. There will always be lines flubbed, flat notes, and rhythms lost, but you almost always cross the finish line and receive your applause. 

Ahhhhh, applause. I can't quit it. 

Now the interesting part of this post is that I learned the company may have gone and/or been looking for a non-equity (that is, non-union) performer for the role to keep costs down for such a small production, and since the role is primarily for a younger actress. 

And this is not the first time I've heard this story. 

And it doesn't make me mad, or frustrated, or get all 'union pride' about it ; I recognize the push-pull in this situation and in general, that Philly is a smaller market and there are less union jobs here. 

But it also doesn't make me want to give up my union card and start booking gigs around here as non-union. 


I worked very hard to get that card, to keep that card, and to represent what that card represents: a professional actress. A professional artist. A professional. 

I want casting directors to know what they are getting with me: nothing but a pro. If you want to take a chance on someone else; it may very well work out for you. Most shows in Philly will not run for years like they do on Broadway; they may not even run two weeks. Many performers could produce a quality performance for you without having gone through the ropes of getting an Equity card. But if you don't want to take any chances and want to feel comfortable about the process you are about to enter into: hire a pro. 

Hire me. 

And if you are not ready for that commitment yet; or not with this show or not with this production company, then I totally understand. But I'm not going to make a commitment in a lesser scenario either. I will keep showing up ; doing my job; and let you know that I'm here. 

Ready when you are ready. 
Willing when you are willing.
And able. To do the job.

If you want a pro.

Friday, May 10, 2013

Meth head mommy

This week I decided that I could no longer wait one stinkin' minute more to meet my friend's new baby (two months old now, practically in college already) and since all our weekends are accounted for from here to 2019 I had to make a day trip down to Maryland to see her tiny little a$$. 

My friend also has a four-year-old so the play date was a no-brainer...

We also managed to swing by my old place of employment and audition for the University of Maryland School of Music a few years early... [so that's done, which is nice]

And overall the day trip went rather smoothly. 


We had to go potty. 
On the drive home. 
In the rain. 
With traffic.
On approach to the Fort McHenry Tunnel...

And mommy panicked and got off on...I don't know where. 

Well... at least there is a Chik-Fil-A! Maybe some chicken nuggets will get us through the next two three hours of traffic home...

As we entered the restroom I quickly realized there were only two stalls: one tiny one, and thankfully, one large, unoccupied, handicapped stall. Since we were all three headed in there, the handicapped stall would do just nicely. 

After the first of our potty party did her business, we heard something. 

The woman next to us in the stall was talking.
But not to us. 
To a friend. Nothing pressing, just... the Chik-Fil-A bathroom...

Hey, if that's your jam...

But then the subject of conversation turned to slurs and slanders and promises of: 
I wasn't sure what it was that she was going to get, but I just felt a sudden sensation of 'Alright, children, let's MOVE.'

Various bouts of yelling-slash-chatting at her friend continued in such a fashion that I wasn't quite sure if she was drunk, lazy, homeless and just hanging out, or if this was indeed the way in which she was able to be successful in her [public] potty life.

Of course, this is the opportune time when the second member of our potty party had decided he was going to need to sit and wait for his business to be finished. 

A boy who normally accomplishes this task between turns-at-bat in a three-person-baseball-game.

Oh boy. I motion at the boy to get going and he is not understanding what I am getting at. I start to open my mouth to whisper to him that the main reason I have potty-trained him to hold onto his business is for this exact situation and that we would likely be able to revisit a safer potty within the next 24 hours when


who said that.


I immediately look at my daughter, who is wearing pink sandals and a blue dress... What... where are the video cameras...I must be on TV...are they making a reality show version of Twilight Zone??


I hear our neighbor respond, 

"ANGEL?? ANGEL GIT IN HER RAT NOW." She opens the stall door, still sitting on the pot with her pants around her ankles [I know this because both my children needed to get on all fours on this glorious bathroom floor to see what was going on and I bent down and erroneously caught a glimpse as I grabbed my children's arms out of their sockets to lift them up over the stall doors into another time and place] and scurries her little Angel into the *tiny* stall with her.

The woman at the entrance to the restroom, exasperated, throws in a: 


Which prompts our neighbor to start to get even more energized, still on the phone, mind you, and tells her phone buddy all about what kind of "Jesus Christ" she is going to show this other woman...

[I don't know what that means either.]

Our potty party finally comes to a close and the kids start opening the stall door as I'm still buckling my belt and I start to feel the barrier between me and this woman crumbling between us but luckily she has her Angel now roaming the rest of the bathroom while she mostly keeps her door closed, still. on. the. phone...

And as I'm ushering the children out the little Angel looks at me with these big, brown eyes and cutest little curly brown ponytail and asks me, 
"Can I go too?"
I, half speechless and half not wanting to reveal myself to what by now you must realize can only be the aforementioned meth head mommy, just shook my head "no" as sweetly as I could to the girl, not wanting her mom to know I responded to her, but wanting her to know there is kindness in the world! 

And I think all of that happened in the span of 4 minutes.

But then...

I saw her. 

I went to the counter to place our to-go order and could not resist allowing the children to hit the play area while we waited for our food. 

Why?? Because this is fast food and our wait was a total of 20 seconds and I knew this but was just faced with an alternate universe where children aren't honored and/or listened to so I just had to let them run their hands and knees all over this infested play place before we head back into our car to eat our food?!?!

Not to mention that when retrieving my children not five seconds later I would be faced at the door  [how did she get by me so fast??] with her.

Imagine if you will...

Honey Boo Boo all grown up ... 

The bugged-out-eyes and forehead are still as largely disproportionate as they are now...

The blue eyeshadow still applied in a chunky childish rainbow shape, the mascara still falling off her lower lashes in a smudged-up disasterous mess...

The curls - or dreads - who can tell - just lifelessly hanging off the sides of two pigtails, which themselves have been asymmetrically misplaced...

The pink, tattered, inappropriately small t-shirt with illegible writing and belly poking out, and 

dirty. DIRTY jeans that are cut off at the capri-length [cuz that's the length of the moment]

and the sourest look on her face as she yells at her Angel to head back into the play place while: 

" I deal with this lady."

Alrighty then... 


is what went out of my mouth in my head. 


is what actually came out. 

And we exited the whole place with  a "thank you" to the employees at the counter, which prompted a "my pleasure" as I overheard the two women at the playplace exchange 



And we were out.

like Honey Boo Boo in the Ultimate Grand Supreme competition. 

Monday, May 6, 2013

Go Local: Broad Street Run 10-miler report




Quick & Dirty
1. Way better than Rock n Roll Half
2. High-fived Mayor Nutter at the start!! Whoop-whoop!! I actually saw him and looped back around to get my high-five.
3. Ran the whole time; my friend was a consistent pace-setter.
4. Could have run faster; still don't know how to 'leave it all out there.' 
5. Overall good start to the season.

Broad Street Run is mostly downhill; is totally a locally-involved, locally-celebrated race, is a great way to see Philly as a runner-tourist in all its brotherly love and mix of old and new as you slice through the center of Center City. There were bands, musicians, fun signs, high-fives everywhere, love for Boston and love for Philly all over the place. This. is. Philly's. race. You start in a typical Philly neighborhood, pass by Temple University where the marching band and students cheer you on (miles 3-4), head straight to City Hall (mile 5-6), then past the Arts & Theatre district, South Philly neighborhoods (miles 7-8), the Sports arenas (miles 8-9) and then finish at the Navy Yard. 

My fave sign:

I really had a blast! 

I have to investigate as to why I feel so good post-race this time, as opposed to September when I ran the Philly Rock n Roll Half. My legs and my body are fine; my frustration with pre- and post-race logistics is at a minimum (although there were some logistical kinks) ; my recovery was virtually nil! 

There could be several factors - 

1. I was running a relatively slow pace with my friend, whom I hadn't seen in years [like, pre-kids years!] So the whole time I felt good. She dropped back at mile 8, so I picked up the pace from our 11-minute miles to 10-minute miles for the last 2. I know I could have run faster the whole time, but I wasn't concerned with my time. She and I both have bigger races set in our sights, so this was not our goal race; it was more of a practice race. [finish: 1:48]
2. Rock n Roll Half had a bit more incline.
3. And yes, the half had an extra 5K tacked onto it...
4. Mentally I was not as intimidated. 
5. The weather was a little cooler, so I had no chafing.
6. I am 12 pounds lighter than last September.
7. I did wear [pro-]compression socks for the first time in a race [red for Boston, of course]! Hmmm....[that Skinny Runner may be on to something...]

8. But really, I think the biggest change, was that I had a better hold on my nutrition pre- and post!

I ate: 
*NOT* steaks. 
We got some for my friend to take home with her to NY post-race.
1. Day before: Lots of water and 2 small boxes of coconut water. 
2. Night before: Light sushi dinner plus a little sake for pre-race jitters and to grease the memory cells during catching-up...
3. Morning of: Coffee (I take with milk & sugar), water, 1 coconut water, and two pieces of raisin bread.
4. During race: 1 Gu (espresso with caffeine) + water at start, 1 Gu (vanilla) + water at halfway point.
5. Immediately after: banana, 1 coconut water.
6. 2 hours after: an amazing brunch of egg frittata + turkey sausage [and oh yeah, two spicy horseradish-infused bloody marys] with my Motherhood: the Musical ladies. We were saying goodbye to one of the ladies who is moving out of town, so it had to be today! Good thing I'm a gym rat and enjoyed scoping out one of the PSC's downtown post-race to freshen up. [We ate at Talula's Garden, and it was magical. Farm-fresh and sooooooo goood.]
7. That night: 1 more coconut water, lots of water, and a little short ribs & mashed potatoes the hubby had cooked up. 2 mini almond joys to celebrate. [I have officially switched from Gatorade to Coconut Water. I definitely felt a difference with my long training runs and now with this race. I'm obsessed!!]

Oh and I wanted to eat these little fingers after getting this pic texted to me when I texted Daddy that I finished. They were on a 'bear hunt' and stopped to give me a thumbs up:

I have to say I really think I like the 10 mile distance. It doesn't feel too long, or too short. And I really like a local race that everyone comes out to cheer for.  I highly recommend this one! 

What about you? Are you a fitness tourist?? 
Do you have a local race that can't be missed??

Friday, May 3, 2013

ISO the perfect bikini wax

Washington, D.C.
I got my first bikini wax in college for Spring Break. This was my first Spring Break where I was headed to a beach without a boyfriend. I was excited. I thought it was going to be fun! I thought it was my step to becoming a cute single girl. 

I was wrong. 

It was hot, sweaty, and there were rules.  

She told me I should *not* be wearing jeans. I should *not* take a shower within 24 hours. And I should *not* let it go 6 weeks before returning.

I do *not* follow rules very well. I did *not* get another wax until I moved to NYC, started chatting with some fellow performers and we got to the subject.
"A beer & an Advil," my new friend quipped,
"then you're good to go."
New York, NY
I was reinspired. It was not long before I found my Lana. She was Eastern European, tough and sweet at the same time, and knew how to make the wax go fast and not make me feel guilty if it had been awhile. 

It had been a year or two before I decided to get a little adventurous and try a Brazilian with her. When I arrived at the salon, Lana was not there for my appointment. She had a family emergency. 

"She has a family?" I thought to myself. I had imagined she was always sitting in that back room in the salon, waiting for me to arrive with spa needs. 

Her replacement for the day was a newbie. AND I was getting a Brazilian, which clearly intimidated her, as I could see little beads of sweat forming at her hairline. 

The best part of this salon's wax was that it was a little bit nicer, and it did not require strips of fabric or paper to remove the wax; the wax hardened on its own and the aesthetician rips it off after it hardens. 

Looking back on this combination of this type of wax, a newbie wax-er, and a newbie Brazilian-er, I definitely should have paid more for the type of service I received that morning for a good *45* minutes. 

We both needed a cold shower after that one.

So that may explain why I did not try another Brazilian, ever, until I came to Philadelphia.

Philadelphia, PA
Let me start by saying, no one wants to talk about this. I'm assuming because not everyone needs them but when I first moved to the Main Line, I was struggling to feel like a woman again after child birth, I tried to bring it up at playgroup and the subject fell flat. The convo quickly turned to breast feeding and everyone was happy to chime in.

The first mommy I did get to chat about it didn't actually have any recommendations for me as she had had the whole thing laser'd off.  

Bare kitty. Permanently??? 

Amazing. What if this is a trend that doesn't hold out? As my former boss liked to point out to me, the preference for those coming of age in the 70's was the opposite of bare kitty. Opposite!!! The furrier the better.

So on to my musical days here in Philly. Ah yes, my people had recommendations  for me. And of course we knew each other all of a week before it came up. My people.

So there is a woman in Center City who will give you a Brazilian in 5 minutes relatively painlessly. Well. Physically painlessly. But emotionally...

"Who sent you," with a thick Russian accent.

"Fiona?" I answer, tentative as to whether I was supposed to use her real name? 
[Fiona is not her real name either.]

"Where from."

"From my job?"

"Where work you"

"At a musical at society hill playhouse?"

"Hm. I know not Fiona."

As she is having this lovely chat with me and I'm sweating what's about to happen she walks me into a back room that is completely tiled wall-to-wall-to-floor in WHITE. To add to that brightness, enough flourescent lighting fills the room to scream "interrogation room" rather than "spa." 

That's because, this is not a spa. It's a place to get the fastest Brazilian you've ever had. 

And in waxing, fast equals better.

"Take off pants. Lay here." 

Let me tell you - she is fast. And that does help to make it painless. But as our relationship progressed over the next year...she got more and more arrogant!! She started demanding more visits. She instituted more rules. It became a vicious cycle as I was less motivated to see her and she laid down more guilt trips the less I visited!! 

She was like the worst boyfriend I ever had!!

The last time I saw her, she spent the entire 5-10 minutes berating the amount of work I had put forth in front of her as she aggressively removed the wax. I started crying, left, and never went back. 

Sorry to make you cringe!! Don't be sad. It has a good ending. But there is a tad bit more cringing.

Main Line, PA
Present day. Enter my mother-in-law. [told you.]

I take her to my local salon for mani-pedis to thank her for watching the children that night while we head to our preschool parents' social. 

"Hi TwynMawrMom" my wax lady shouts to welcome us into the salon. She is soo sweet. She is my rock. She is my everything!! She never makes me feel bad and would never make me cry. I heart her. 

[she doesn't call me TwynMawrMom; we don't even really know each other's names. 
That's what works for us. That's how lovely our relationship is.]

"Hi! We're going to get mani-pedis this morning" I smile at her.

"Oh! No wax today???" she asks. I cringe. 

"No, just mani-pedis!" I smile again, teeth showing, shoulders pinched up. Just. seat. us!! 

"Oh do you get your eyebrows waxed here?" my mother-in-law asks. 

Should have said: yes. 
Instead said: 


"Oh! What then?" she has the nerve and naivete to delve deeper. 

"Bikini." I barely breathe out with a whisper. Can we please not have this discussion. 

"Oh." she shuts up after that. 

It's always a good day when you can embarrass yourself and your mother-in-law with one word.


Thursday, May 2, 2013

Excuses, excuses...aka Nighttime potty training

[Note: follow me on fb here or twitter here if you want to find out by-the-minute if I get the callback for that audition this week.  I'm waiting....starting to run out of Sake...]

So among my husband's more brilliant ideas is to potty train the kids at night the minute he is off his quarter-end craziness. 

He always needs a new project when he is present in the house more than 4 hours in a 24 hour period. 

Because what I really need on the week before a big race, a race which I have barely prepared for, is to do two loads of laundry in the middle of the night.

I may have suggested a few other, note-worthy causes [our master bedroom, the guest bathroom, finishing the basement cabinets & shelving so I could actually put together an organizational system for the sea of toys we must swim through every time we are headed to the Treadmill...] but those were clearly not as appealing as four family members smelling like pee for two weeks. 

Let's hope it only takes two weeks...

We go cold turkey on the diapers two nights ago (I wanted one last night of freedom before my audition.) The last time we tried this was a full year ago. They were 3 1/2 last Spring and I tried several times. They both wanted to give up nighttime diapers immediately upon day-training, but I was still traumatized by teething or something (it had only been, what? a year and a half?) and wanted to continue that precious precious sleep thingy. 

So another six months rolled by and we went diaperless at night and it didn't take long to be a disaster, and for us to revert to diapers again. 

And when I say it didn't take long, I'm pretty sure we lasted one night. 

So this round I guess we should give it at least 2 weeks? Strategies may or may not include: 
  • going cold turkey, and meaning it
  • calling upon superheroes and princesses on panties that should not be peed upon
  • incentives (candy, toys, rewards) for a dry night
  • waking them up at midnight (before my husband goes to sleep) and making them stumble into the bathroom while we laugh hysterically at the glimpse of their future drunk party selves
  • last resort: stop them from drinking after 5 PM [conveniently when mine starts]
So this is how I find myself in the early hours of this morning, snuggling up with the little boy in his double bed. For the third time this 'night.'  This time I brought my pillow so my neck won't get stiff. He is tossing and turning and so I turn my back to him as to avoid the kicks. He ends up draping his legs over the side of my back as if my back were a seat of sorts.  I really should have just put that diaper on him after the second change of sheets. 

This will certainly make for an interesting crime scene. 

I ask him if he needs to go potty, but he is clearly asleep. 

I start to ponder the eco-footprint of doing three extra loads of laundry per day versus the continuation of pull up diapers.

And whether I could start cloth diapering now. 

Since the sheets have basically succumbed to that role by default. 

And it has just been....lovely

Broad Street, here I come!!

You got a story too? Advice? 

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