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Monthly Archives: May 2012

It’s the Friday before a three-day weekend. Obviously, that means my productivity and creativity went out the door yesterday around 4:00. That, combined with all of the random thoughts swirling around my head, leads to a blog post with me sharing a few of my (currently) favorite things with you today! Yay! So lucky for you!

7UP – Heads down. Thumbs up. What a great/horrible game. Oh, man. Remember how much you didn’t want the sticky kid to push your thumb down? Poor sticky kids of the world. I hope they’re all very well-off today. And well groomed.

I’ll trade my best friend (Sorry, Al. You understand.) to anyone who buys me this collection. She’s a good listener and stuff. Think it over.

Nail polish – Ahhhh. Obsessed. Before getting engaged, I’d paint my nails sporadically (“I’ll be seeing you.” “I hope not sporadically.” –Clueless reference for you.) Then, once he put a ring on it, everyone naturally wanted to see the ring in all its glory. It wasn’t fair to my gorgeous rock that it was on display on such a boring hand, so I started buying new nail polishes. I quickly fell in love with Essie. OPI is alright, but Essie is my drug of choice. I soon accumulated over 80 nail polishes, and realized a few months ago that I needed to cut way back. Unfortunately for me, that’s when Essie decided to come out with their Poppy Razzi line AND their Summer 2012 line. I neeeeeed them. All of the polishes. On my fingers.

Dice With Buddies – First, Words With Friends swept the world. Then Hanging With Friends. Theeeeen Scramble With Friends. Draw Something is so three months ago. Now, all the cool kids are playing Dice With Buddies aka Yahtzee. Download it. Add me. Let’s do this thang.

Oh, heeeey Colin.

The Client List – Are you watching this Jennifer Love Hewitt show on Lifetime? If not, you should be. First of all, it has Jennifer Love Hewitt in it. If you don’t love her and her bouncy hair and bouncy boo well-toned body (I may have a girl crush. Big deal.), then you have no place reading my blog. For those of you who are left – The premise of the show is that her husband up and left her and their two, elementary-school aged kids. The family was facing foreclosure so Love’s character, Riley, naturally did what any woman with a masseuse license would do – get a job at a rub-and-tug spa. But, cmon. It’s not that bad. It’s a classy rub-and-tug. Owned by Chief Webber’s wife. No? This isn’t some Grey’s Anatomy cross-over thing? Whatevs. I’m still going to call her the Chief’s wife. Not only are all of her clients handsome, but Colin Egglesfield is also on the show, playing her brother-in-law. JLove’s life does not suck.

Marcel the Shell with shoes on – This is an oldie but a goodie. Please consider this my Memorial Day gift to you.

I’ve decided to share with you a list of my favorite movie quotes. Because this is my blog and you can do whatever you want on your own blog.

I loooove me some movie quotes. Why? Because I would love to be part of the most awesome thing to occur during a movie – an outfit-changing music montage. That will (probably) never happen. So the next best thing is just quoting awesome things that are said in movies.

The movie: Love and Sex – 2000

The scene: Kate is in the theater, trying to get to know her date. She asked him if it freaked him out that everyone in the theater would die someday. He got irritated with her talking and told her to be quiet. She got frustrated, stood up and began shouting to other people in a movie theater

The quote: “Think about it! Someday, you’re all going to die. Think about that! You’re all going to die and nobody will ever remember you, because they’ll all be dead too!”

Why I love it: This is my favorite movie. If you haven’t seen this indie starring Famke Janssen and Jon Favreau, I highly suggest you do because it’s hilarious. Out of every movie character I’ve ever spent time getting to know, I feel like I most closely relate to Janssen’s slightly-neurotic Kate. Her quick wit and constant worrying is a reflection upon my life (That’s how I see it, anyways.) Take this quote, and her delivery. Just think about it. Everyone in a movie theater, just staring forward into the darkness. Someday, everyone in that theater is going to be dead. Just think about that.

Honorable mention: (While trying to get dressed for a function where she will see her ex-boyfriend for the first time since breaking up) “That dress makes me look like a drug-addicted hooker. I want to look great – like a drug-addicted model!”

The movie: Titanic – 1998

The scene: Jack found Rose standing on the rail of the ship and is telling her she doesn’t want to jump

The quote: “Don’t presume to tell me what I will and will not do. You don’t know me!” – Rose

Why I love it: Because even though Rose is currently contemplating suicide, she STILL doesn’t want a damn man bossing her around. Also, because the writing in this film is sort of horrific. Who would say that in real life? I mean, besides me, ‘cause I do all the time.

When I say it: Whenever someone tries to tell me what to do OR whenever I feel like speaking in a horrible British accent.

Honorable mention: “I want you to draw me like one of your French girls. Wearing this. Wearing ONLY this.” Hahahah Oh man with this dialogue.

The movie: Rudolph, the Red-Nosed Reindeer – 1964

The scene: Clarice just called Rudolph “cute”

The quote: “She said I’m cuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuute!” – Rudolph

Why I love it: How precious. Rudolph literally cannot contain his excitement at the notion that hot to trot Clarice may have a thing for him.

When I say it: Whenever anyone tells me I look nice. Which has prevented those close to me from saying I look nice very often.

Honorable Mention: “A DEN-TIST?” Um, yuh. It’s not like he said Professional Unicorn Rider. And even if he DID, you live at the North Pole. With SANTA. So why is it so hard to believe that Hermey would like to be a .. a dentist?!

The movie: Don’t Tell Mom the Babysitter’s Dead – 1991

The scene:  Sue Ellen is interrupting Carolyn’s phone call, asking where she should go to submit a job application

The quote: “You are supposed to go down to per-so-nnel. That. Is on. The First. Floor. There’s a great-big-sign that says … per-so-nnel. Do. You. Under-stand?”  – Carolyn, the receptionist

Why I love it: Oh, Carolyn. You’re such a biotch. Did Sue-Ellen take the job you were supposed to be promoted to by using a resume taken right out of a resume book? Ok. Yeah. Sure. But does that give you and your mousey-brown hair the right to go snooping through her files and making copies of her driver’s license? It doesn’t.

When I say it: Whenever someone asks a question which I find irritating. Or, often when I’m in the presence of my sister, because we can’t have a conversation without quoting this movie.

Honorable Mention: I’d like to give the following Don’t Tell Mom the Babysitter’s Dead quotes honorable mention: “I bought a pair of boots and a magazine! You bought a home entertainment system?!” “The dishes are done, man!” “I’m right on top of that, Rose!” “PMS city, man!” “Mrs. Stuarack? She’s at the yarn store. She’s crocheting this massive doily for the couch.” and, of course – “Cynthia, you’re my moon goddess.” Actually, I’m fairly certain if there was a competition I could enter, where the person who can quote the entire script of DTMTBD most accurately wins a giant box of Capt’n Crunch and some left-overs from the Clown Dog, well, I’d rock that competition so hard.)

(Aaaaaand I just found my new favorite youtube video. Sorry, Marcel the Shell)

There are approximately 14,763 other quotes that I say rather routinely, but would like to give you the chance to claim them as your own. What’s your favorite movie quote?

The giveaway is now closed. Congratulations to comment #41 – Renee Richardson. Thanks so much to Ali Herrmann for sponsoring this giveaway!

We bought our house in November – four months before our wedding. If you’re thinking “Wow! Buying a house so close to your wedding? That seems stressful!” – you would be correct. It was an extremely stressful time, which pushed both the boundaries of our relationship and our sanity.

Luckily, we are now happily married and our weekends have been free to finally get things done around the house. Jason has been busting his butt outside, chopping down trees, digging up weeds and other things which involve a ladder and going on the roof. I think maybe filling something in to keep bees away? Let’s say that. Anyways, I’ve been running around inside, cleaning and trying to get rooms to come together. For a lot of our decorating needs, I turn to Etsy (where I went for a good chunk of wedding supplies as well).

Etsy is currently my very favorite site. For those of you unfamiliar with the site, think of it as an online craft fair. Thousands of vendors set up “shops”, posting pictures and descriptions of their items for sale. You can find hand-crocheted baby blankets, wedding cake toppers and kitchen knickknacks all at the click of your mouse.

I’ve ordered over a dozen items off of Etsy, and every shop owner has been fantastic to work with.

So, just as I do with everything, when it came to decorating our house, I went to Etsy. I found a great, local art shop (you can search by zipcode), owned by Ali Herrmann.

Ali lives in Canaan, NY. Saturdays during June you can find her at the Delmar Farmer’s Market from 9am – 1 pm.  On June 10th she will be at the Schenectady Green Market from 10am – 2 pm. She will also be at Art on Lark on June 9th!

From Ali’s shop profile:

My work here is all original painting! When you purchase my work, you are buying the originals, as I do not take or make prints of them. I am a full time artist, so please know that your support is truly appreciated.

My work is heavily influenced by the growth and decay cycles of nature; though I am most intrigued by the “pods” I find. Within my paintings, I reference plants and pods amidst a combination of both representation and abstraction. As a result, repetitious forms and patterns start to emerge, creating a unique, playful landscape all its own.

Limited Selections of work also available for sale at:
Anchor No. 5 Boutique, 288 River Street, Troy, NY

Jewelry and artwork for sale at the Albany, NY Visitors Center (corner of B’way and Columbia)

She also has a jewelry shop, which you can view at www.theotherali.etsy.com (We may also hold a giveaway for that shop as well!)

Ali has offered my readers 10% off their entire purchase by using the coupon code BLOGHEATHER. The coupon code must be entered on the Etsy cart/payment page BEFORE being redirected to paypal for completion. Once coupon code is entered properly, click apply and you with see the discount applied. The coupon code IS case sensitive.

On the right, you will see “Apply Shop Coupon Code”. Click the link and enter BLOGHEATHER for 10% off your order

She has also graciously offered one of my readers the chance to win one of her watercolors, Rusty Veins. This original watercolor was done on 140lb hot pressed watercolor paper, using orange and rust colors. The 5.75” x 4” piece will come shipped in a protective photo storage bag, matted in a black mat.

In order to win, please visit Ali’s shop at AliHerrmann. Come back and leave a comment, letting Ali know the name of another piece that you like.

For one extra entry, please subscribe to my blog, and leave a separate comment letting me know you did this.

For one more entry, please like Ali’s Facebook Fan Page. Please leave a separate comment letting me know you did this.

The contest closes Friday, May 25th at 3:00 p.m. The winner will be chosen using random.org. The winner will be contacted via email (so make sure to leave your address in your comments!) and will have 48 hours to respond.

Rusty Veins by Ali Herrmann

I love Fox’s New Girl. I’ll admit that I didn’t jump onboard the bandwagon the way that I had hoped. I had high expectations for this show and I found the first couple of episodes forced. Damon Wayans Jr had filmed the pilots for both New Girl and Happy Endings, obviously not anticipating both of them succeeding. He ended up leaving New Girl after the pilot episode, and the transition was awkward.

But The Husband and I stuck with it and it quickly turned into one of our favorites. I’ve been a fan of Zooey Deschanel for so long that when I first heard of her, Manic Pixie Dream Girl wasn’t even a thing yet. Maybe that’s why I find her iPhone commercial incredibly annoying.

I’m sure you’ve seen the ad, but for the six of you who haven’t, it goes something like this. It’s raining outside and we see Zooey, in her ‘jammies, talking to her buddy Siri. “Siri, is that rain?” she asks her phone. “Yes, it appears to be raining,” Siri answers somewhat sarcastically, clearly fed up with Zooey’s sprite self. Um, yuh, Zo, you’re pretty much LITERALLY looking out the window soooo get to that answer yourself.

We then see Zooey doing things you’d expect “Zooey” to do when left to her own accord. You know, eccentric, incredibly cute things. Ordering in soup! Setting a reminder to clean her house (not til tomorrow!) and, of course, dancing to some old time rock and roll! Quirky! I find all of those things mildly irritating but they are not the cause of this rant.

Siri finds Zooey a restaurant that delivers tomato soup (because, you know, opening a can is hard for a girl!) “Good. Because I don’t want to put on real shoes,” Zooey says WHILE WEARING BRIGHT RED LIPSTICK AND ROCKING A SMOKEY EYE WITH FALSE EYELASHES.

This picture doesn’t even do her lipstick justice.


Zooey, I see that you’ve just been cast in the Broadway production of Coal Miner’s Daughter. I hope that means you will stop doing parodies of yourself. That whole schtick is starting to grate on the nerves of even your biggest fans.

I want to thank everyone who took the time to check out Ruffles With Love and enter the giveaway. Remember that you can still use coupon code JustAThought to get 10% off an order. Using www.random.org, the winner for the giveaway is comment #2 YanksJD2. Congratulations! Please make sure to subscribe to my blog for updates. I have several giveaways lined up for next week, including jewelry and home decor. Very exciting!

I am not crazy about working out. Unfortunately, I AM crazy about cupcakes, chips and all varieties of fried foods. Thanks to my place of employment, I have a membership to Gold’s Gym. I used that membership diligently during the year leading up to the wedding.

Although I don’t think I’ll ever say I loved it, I did begin to look forward to my daily date with an elliptical in the Cinema Room at Gold’s Niskayuna location. I don’t understand why every gym doesn’t have a Cardio Cinema Room. First of all, it’s cool and dark in there, to keep your sweat level at bay and to keep your bouncing body parts from bothering other members. It’s set up like a theater, with different levels housing various treadmills, stationary bikes and (my favorite) ellipticals. Every day, a different movie plays on a loop on an actual movie screen. The staff (at least at the Niskayuna location) does an awesome job rotating through all genres. In the span of one week, you can catch Animal House, a lifetime movie starring Mandy Moore, Thor and Mars Attacks.

Anyways, after the wedding, I totally began to slack on my exercise. My office changed locations, moving farther away from the gym and (unfortunately for our bank account) much closer to the mall. But last week, after washing down a taco dinner with a cupcake, I decided I needed to get back in the game.

I made my way to the gym yesterday and I’m happy to report that I am still alive and not in as much pain as I anticipated. The final push to get me there was receiving a workout shirt from the Etsy shop Ruffles With Love. The shop owner, Vanessa, has offered to give one t-shirt away to one of my readers!

I got the cobalt blue Break a Sweat racer tank. The jersey cotton material is light – perfect for working out. I loved the color combo, with the tangerine words on the front and the hot pink ribbon on the back.

Vanessa is a data analyst in California. When she got engaged last year, she decided she had to get to the gym more and decided to make herself a few fun, cute workout shirts. Her fiancée started throwing out sayings to put on the shirts, such as “Sweating for the Dress”, “Beauty Trains Like a Beast” and “Strong is the New Skinny”. Others saw the shirts and asked where she got them from. Ruffles With Love was soon born.

A bit about the shop, from Vanessa: I have always loved bows, ribbons, anything pink and anything that says girly! I enjoy being athletic and wanted to incorporate all of my likes into something great! I enjoy making workout tank tops that have all of my likes and sayings that will motivate not only you but others around you. No workout tank is complete without a bow, at least in my eyes! I enjoy making them and coming up with fun color combinations. I hope you love my shirts as I much as I love making them!

Ruffles with Love is offering my readers 10% off any order. When you go to check out, click “apply shop code” and enter JustAThought . Keep in mind that Vanessa will work with you to make a customized shirt as well!

She’s graciously offered one reader the chance to win one shirt from her store.

To enter, please visit http://www.etsy.com/shop/RufflesWithLove , come back here and leave a comment letting us know what your favorite shirt is. Please make sure to leave your email address, so I can contact you if you win!

For 1 bonus entry, like http://www.facebook.com/RuffleswithLove . Leave a comment letting me know you did this.

For 1 more bonus entry, subscribe to my blog (on the right column). Leave a comment letting me know you did this.

The winner will be chosen from all comments by random.org on Friday May 18th at 3:00 pm EST and will have 48 hours to respond to my email in order to claim their prize!

Yesterday, the worst thing that can possibly happen to a person (you know, besides disease and poverty and stuff), happened to The Husband. His iPhone DIED! He was trying to do an update (Side Note: We have a fun little thing going on with updating our phones, in that he always yells at me to update apps and software and then I don’t and then he checks back and now I have 17 apps that need updating and he yells at me and I say I’ll do it later but then I don’t and then he checks back in a few days and I have 24 app updates and a software update to do and then Jay just does it for me. I don’t believe in updates.) … and his phone froze while plugged into iTunes.

We did the usual troubleshooting – unplug it and blow into it Super Nintendo style, ‘cause that usually fixes all technology glitches. Not this time! Shut it off. Turn it on – still frozen on the “Hey! Plug me into iTunes!” screen. So then, naturally, we panicked and swiftly made our way to the nearest Verizon.

Our spikey-haired, Spiderman-forearm-tattooed associate, Michelle, delivered the horrible news – nothing could be done. Luckily, The Husband is obsessed with always having the newest phone, and his was still under warranty. Verizon would mail him a new one in 3-5 business days. THREE TO FIVE BUSINESS DAYS, PEOPLE! What if I needed to text him a picture of fruit walking through the mall? What if I needed to spend all day sending him enticing messages to whet his appetite (pervert) for ice cream that night?

Luckily, I saw fruit walking through the mall last month soooo

WHATABOUTME?! Oh, and also, if he got in an accident or whatnot. (Although, thankfully, he has never needed to make a call due to being in an accident, he DID run out of gas, on the Northway, just passed the Twin Bridges, at RUSH HOUR a few years ago. My fellow 518ers will understand how we were not able to make eye contact or speak for a few hours after suffering through that ordeal.)

You know that quote from Love Story, “Being in love means never having to say you’re sorry?” Well, being part of Generation Y means never having the patience to wait for anything. Three to five days my butt. We were getting this done ASAP! Unfortunately, this whole thing went down Sunday afternoon. After being delivered the stunning blow that Jason would be out of a phone for practically the rest of his LIFE, we had to put on a brave face to meet his parents for Mother’s Day dinner…

Which was right around the corner from the Apple Store! Yes, the Apple Store! Those guys will be able to fix it! So we drove over at 6:30, to find out that apparently they have lives and close at 6:00 on Sundays. Talk about things going from bad to worse!

On his break this afternoon, Jason went to the Apple Store and spent 45 minutes at the Genius Bar (Aw, how arrogant of you, Apple. How precious), where they lived up to their names and somehow restored his phone. I’m confident they used some sort of voodoo trickery, although I cannot confirm this as I wasn’t there. But probably. They told Jason to go home, plug his phone back in and retrieve all of his contacts, songs, etc from The Cloud (Another thing I don’t believe in aka take the time to do) Luckily, his phone started working just in time for me to call him and tell him about my first trip back to the gym after 4 months off (Side note – I have a pretty cool giveaway post for tomorrow, care of Ruffles With Love Etsy shop. My legs are aching and I was a sweaty mess, but at least I had a cute shirt!)

I shall pretend that this is the Apple employee who helped Jason. This man is PUMPED!

Oh, but more bad news, guys. We did suffer a few casualties, including the PAID for version Angry Birds Space. Oh, technology. Why must you play with our tender, tender hearts?

I just read an article on Shine from Yahoo! titled 15 Very Good Reasons to NEVER Get Married. Being a newlywed (Have I mentioned that 470 times yet? No? Great.), I feel like I need to make my rebuttal on this article public.

1. Despite what everyone says, you LOVE the single life.

Ah, yes. The single life. Who doesn’t love suffering through plenty of awkward, boring first dates?

2. You know you have to share both the ice cream and the tv remote.

I have to beg my husband to go out for ice cream. I assure you, if there’s any floating around the house, when it gets consumed it will be by me and my own gluttony. As for the tv remote – clearly this author has never heard of DVR or instant online streaming.

Hey, handsome. You clean that reeeeaaall good.

3. You’ll have to boot Pablo the Pool Boy.

If we were fancy enough to have a pool and even fancier enough (that’s a thing, I bet) to have a pool boy, I doubt that my confident, handsome husband would have any problem with a (stereotypical) pool boy doing a chore that he wouldn’t want to do himself. I can’t even get him to commit to a 4-foot above ground pool. That’s how little he wants to take care of one. So if we could afford to pay someone to do it, I’m pretty sure he’d be ok with that.

4. You like to sleep across the whole bed.

I do this while married.

5. You can’t stand sharing your space, especially when you know that with marriage comes dude stuff – like that awful Bud Light sign.

A man considering marriage should never have a Bud Light sign, or any other beer related memorabilia, hanging on his walls. Your frat boy days are over, my friend. Embrace adulthood.

6. You know that colonies of dirty socks will follow you everywhere you go the moment you let a guy move in.

Unfortunately, I do not have a rebuttal for this, as it is very much true in our home. However, it did not prevent me from becoming his wife.

7. You’d rather be able to break it off and move on without having to involve the courts.

You should discuss your clear commitment and intimacy issues with your therapist at next week’s session. Or, you should have an honest talk with your potential spouse about all your outstanding warrants. They should then be able to understand your obvious need to avoid the court system.

8. Your toilet seat will NEVER be the same.

I don’t even know what this means. In nearly all of my encounters, the adult male (ages 25+) does not remind me of a wild animal. The majority of the time, they are, in fact, able to control their bodily waste and contain it within the previously designated area.

I wear the Purple Parrots t-shirt my sister got me with pride, Olmec.

9. You don’t want to have to answer to anyone – you can come and go as you please.

I don’t have to answer to anyone. Is it polite to let my husband know that I’m going to get my nails done or out to grab lunch with friends? Yup. But, the choices I make are mine, and mine alone, Olmec. Plus, who are we kidding? I don’t have many friends and him and I are going to lunch together soooo

10. Marriage = one person for the rest of your life. One person for the rest of your life = BORING.

This logic is correct if you consider loyalty, love, and unyielding companionship boring. Also, if you’d rather have awkward, just-go-ahead-and-get-the-lay-of-the-land-but-please-don’t-touch-me-there sex, as opposed to you-know-all-the-right-things-to-do-because-you-know-me-so-well-sex, then sure.

11. Marriage is expensive. So is divorce. You’d rather take the cash and travel around Europe for three years.

Our marriage license cost us $35. I can’t even fill up my gas tank with that sooooo good luck with your European adventure. Hope you’re prepared to sell your body in exchange for food.

12. Your main priority is climbing that corporate ladder and making yourself a success in your career.

My husband 100% supports all of my goals and loves my ambition. If I don’t climb the corporate ladder, how will we ever be able to afford a pool boy?

13. Getting a break on your taxes and car insurance, despite what they say, isn’t a reason to settle down.

If you have any friends who are considering marriage based solely on these reasons, you are correct to advise against it.

14. Marriage is an antiquated tradition, much like not allowing women to vote. Why bother with an institution that fails half the time?

That antiquated tradition of not allowing women to vote (at least here in the good old US of A, where you and your target audience live, author) ended nearly 100 years ago soooooooo. I think now you’re reaching.

My go-to dessert of choice, cupcakes from Fluffalicious. *Contrary to how it may seem, I am NOT a paid ambassador of Fluffalicious. They’re just sooo good.

15. You know that marriage = compromise. You don’t feel that you need to compromise everything to be with someone else.

When you find the *right* person to spend the rest of your life with, you don’t compromise everything. A spouse shouldn’t ask you to give up the things that make you YOU, and vice versa.  Do you sometimes have to eat pizza when really you wanted tacos? Yeah. Ok. But then you get to pick out dessert, go home and eat it on the couch while making your way through your DVR list as your spouse checks baseball scores on the computer and/or rubs your hair. See? Everyone wins.

Although this story is popping up all over the internet, I first saw it over at Kristi’s blog. My first reaction to this cover on Attachment Parenting was a squeamish one. I’m not a mother, so I certainly don’t have a soap box to stand on in order to dictate to others how they should parent. But do I feel ok with looking at a toddler standing on a chair in order to reach his mother’s breasts? Nope.

I believe that parenting is a personal choice, so I’m not bashing her for breastfeeding this long (although I can’t say I don’t find it odd). What I AM bashing is the fact that she dragged her child into this media stunt. Let’s start with how that child is going to feel when he’s a freshman in high school or about to get married (God bless THAT woman).

And now, with their very poor taste in cover art aside, let’s focus on the headline that Time decided to use.

Just in time to ruin your Mother’s Day, Time asks “Are You Mom Enough?” (Cue the insecurities and self-doubt of women everywhere.) The cover fuels the Mommy Wars that have developed in recent years, and it doesn’t look like there’s a side that will win this one. It’s like a parody of an already-bad Jeff Foxworthy joke. If you weaned your baby too early, you’ve probably ruined your child. If you forego breastfeeding and go straight to formula, you’ve probably ruined your child. If you practice attachment parenting and breast feed until their kindergarten teacher tells you to send the kid in with a juice box instead, then you’ve probably ruined your child.

Are you a working mom? Obviously you don’t care about bonding with your child. Are you a stay at home mom? You’re giving them attachment issues.

I think that Time should be ashamed of this cover. I am not a mother. I do not plan on being a mother any time soon. But when that someday comes, I assure you, I will be petrified. I will want all the encouragement I can get. I don’t want to sound all “Let’s burn our bras together!” but shouldn’t we, as women, be supporting each other instead of shouting “My extreme way of parenting is better than yours!”? Shouldn’t we understand that what works for one family might not work for another? Why is there so much propaganda around mothering choices lately? Why can’t a family decide what works for them and then keep it to themselves?

Because when you put something like this out in the public, people ARE going to judge you. I am curious as to how these women were raised, their relationship with their parents and if they are doing the exact opposite of their own parents. So, really, projecting their own issues onto their child.

* I will 100% stand by my opinion that looking at that three-year-old, STANDING ON A CHAIR in order to reach his mother’s breasts, which are in his mouth as he stares straight into the camera is CREEPY. Gross.

Prior to getting married, the Name Change Talk was one we had in our household at least once a day. I wasn’t crazy about doing it, while my husband was adamant about it. Those who know us know how bossy and totally overbearing I am, while Jason’s personality is very mellow and go-with-the-flow. Seeing him so resolute on the matter made me realize that I had to (should, anyways) do this for him. He complies with every insane request I have. I should be able to do this one thing for him. He said it was important to him because it showed we were a united front. He also played the tradition card. The day of our wedding, we broke many traditions, including seeing each other before the wedding. (It was my idea to do a first-look and get pictures out of the way early. Jason agreed, although not enthusiastically.) Traditionally, the bride takes her husband’s name, so couldn’t we at least do that?

I knew I wasn’t going to bother with a hyphen. How completely inconvenient those things are. And what happens when little babies make their way into this world? Are we going to hyphen their name? And what if Baby Girl Wheeler-Sadlemire marries Boy Jones-Smith? Too many names! Too, too many names.

So, I said I would change my last name to his. I told myself it wouldn’t be the huge deal I was making it out to be. I love Jason. I am still my own person. My last name certainly does not define me. I have not (yet) been published, and have not made any substantial contributions to the medical field or anything like that. So, last week I planned on making the trip down to the Social Security office and the DMV.

The Social Security office (in Troy), opens at 9, but I had been given strict instructions by several married ladies to get there at 8:30 in order to beat the crowds. So, naturally, I forget to set my alarm and wake up when Jason calls me at 9:17. Crap! I jumped out of bed, rushed to get dressed and made it into my car in less than ten minutes. I was not off to a great start.

I pulled into the parking lot around 9:45. I walked inside and, aside from a security guard, the office was totally empty. I stood there, staring at the guard for a minute, thinking that I must have messed something else up. Maybe they were closed? The security guard noticed my confusion, commented that I timed things perfectly because it just cleared out about ten minutes ago, and asked what I was there to do. I already had my form filled out, so the guard sent me right up to the window. Clutching our marriage license, I was ready to do this. In less than three minutes, Heather Wheeler no longer existed.

After that, I made my way over to the DMV, which had a longer wait (and a picture which I was not prepared to take. See you later, cute 21-year-old Heather. It was great knowing you. Now, I’ll have to see frantic-looking, no make-up wearing 26-yr-old Heather whenever a bartender is kind enough to i.d me.)

I got home and Jason was there, waiting for me on the couch. When I walked into the living room, we made eye contact and he started to smirk. He knew what was going to come next. He opened his arms….

“I’m not Heather Wheeler aaaannyymoooooooore,” I wailed as tears began streaming down my cheeks.

“Come on over here,” he said compassionately, with his arms ready to hold me and his mind ready to truck through this emotional storm.

Being the saint that he is, he was able to soothe me by reminding me how much he loved me, that I’m still the same person, how we’re a family, and how someday I’ll be so proud to have the same name as the adorable little kids we were sure to pop out.

Ten minutes later, I felt at peace with my decision. I am very adverse to change. I like to sit on the same spot on the couch and watch the same shows. I like to do the same workout routine. I like to go to the same Target and walk down my predetermined route, making my way down the aisles the same as always. So, obviously, CHANGING MY NAME was not going to be an easy walk in the park.

I finished the name change process (I think) this week, changing the bank, utilities, insurance and my payroll. And too bad for Jason, because (so far) I am still the overbearing woman he married. Except, now he has to call me Mrs. Sadlemire.

Hey, Claudia! I love your red scrunchy with dark purple leggings. You’re so artistic and hip!

I first noticed signs for the East Greenbush library book sale about a month ago. I was pumped. Having been a writer and an unyielding bibliophile (I’ll never convert to an e-reader. Never! … Probably) my whole life, book fair weeks were some of my favorite during elementary school. Where else did a six-year-old have access to Lisa Frank erasers, the latest Babysitter’s Club Super Special (shout out to Baby-sitters at Shadow Lake and Baby-sitters’ Island Adventure) and Luke Perry posters?

I’d save my $2-a-week allowance (Back in the 90s, kids weren’t lavished with electronics and expensive gifts. And by kids, I mostly mean that I wasn’t), and spend evenings scoured over the four page sale preview leaflet students were given, circling my most desired items with a sparkly gel pen.

So as we got closer to the EG book sale, I started digging through all my novels, deciding which ones I could part with. I had two bags full of recent best-sellers that I was ready to donate. I hoped that others had done the same. It’s such a bummer when you go to a book sale and its saturated with old Harlequin Romance novels and cookbooks from 1983. (My best friend just told me that she recently found a book about First Ladies, which stopped at Gerald Ford.)

I talked about this sale for weeks. It opened at 5:00 Thursday evening. I usually leave work around 4:30 and planned on going right to the sale. When I asked The Husband if he thought there would be a line, he laughed. “Yeah, of nerds,” he said. First of all – rude. Secondly, I didn’t even care that he was picking on me. Nothing could ruin my excitement. He assured me that he didn’t think there would be anyone else there; people weren’t going to rush out of work to go to a library book sale.

Boy, was he wrong.

I got stuck in traffic (because currently, East Greenbush consists entirely of construction trucks and torn up roads, with some houses in between) and pulled into the library parking lot at 5:08. Cars were parked on the yard and lining the outer loop of the driveway. They filled every spot in the lot. I had to put my old UAlbany parking-spot-stalking skills to use just to get a space.

My not-so-great-stealthy-attempt at getting a picture

When I went inside, you would have thought I was at Walmart on Black Friday. It was absolutely mobbed. I was a bit taken aback and a lot overwhelmed. Having gone to the library the night before to get a sneak-peek lay of the land, I knew I wanted to go into the room on the right first, where all the newer novels were (I also studied the price list and saw that all the books were between $.50-$1. What a steal!) I made my way in and took my first right, deciding that the best course of action would be to snake around the rectangle tables filling the room, rather than mosey from table to table. Books were everywhere. The staff had tried to give some semblance of order, but there was just so many! Boxes were under tables and on top of them. I began to panic. There would be no time to leisurely flip through and read the back jacket, like I had planned. This was definitely a grab and go situation and I was not prepared.

I spent my first ten minutes smooshed up ultra-cozy with a 60+ something woman, who had three canvas bags full of books. From. the. first. table. On the other side of me was a teenage boy, grabbing up classics. I was excited to see such diversity amongst shoppers. I was also excited that I could tell The Husband that he was wrong and, indeed, there were plenty of overzealous, thrifty readers, just like myself.

I have over 100 books on my to-read list on Goodreads, so I was trying to scan titles, desperately hoping something would ring a bell. I saw a book by Kristin HannahTrue Colors. I had read one of hers, Firefly Lane, and liked it. Good enough for me. I scooped it up. “Yes!” I thought. New game plan – look for authors. I spotted a couple Jennifer Weiner books. I liked In Her Shoes and Best Friends Forever, so I grabbed Fly Away Home and Then Came You.

At this point, I had been at the sale approximately 20 minutes, didn’t even make it all the way down the first table and had started to sweat through my t-shirt. I couldn’t stop thinking about how shocked I was to see all of these people. Although I’m not usually one for small talk, I decided to chat up the woman in front of me, by remarking at the large crowd. I told her we just moved to East Greenbush in the fall and this was the first time I ever came to the spring sale.

“Oh, honey. It’s like this every year!” She told me. “I got here at 4:15 and the line outside was probably 50-deep.” (Aha! Take that, Jason!) A staff member overheard and told us that people started showing up at 2:00 with lawn chairs to claim their place in line. So, you know how twenty-year old kids will sit in line for hours to score Dave Matthews tickets? It was pretty much the same thing, except these people were hoping to grab a $1 copy of Nicholas Spark’s The Lucky One (guilty.)

Once I made my way down the first table, the traffic started to thin. Shoppers had a better view of the other, labeled tables, and were able to go to the genre they were looking for. I scored a couple finds off my Goodreads list (Lost & Found by Jacqueline Sheehan, The Murderer’s Daughters by Randy Susan Meyers, A Stolen Life by Jaycee Duggard and The Pilot’s Wife by Anita Shreve). I also began judging books by their covers (because I don’t care what you say, old idiom, people do that). My arms were tired (Whatever. Don’t judge) from the ten books I was carrying. I was able to score a box to carry my new treasures.

Read it. Know it. Love it.

Although I’m fairly certain the library was close to breaking fire code, everyone there was so friendly! “Oh, I read that! It’s one of my favorites!” I heard more than a few times. I found several copies of The Time Traveler’s Wife (my all-time favorite) and was quick to point it out to anyone around me. (I also went as far as to buy one copy for one of the volunteers cashing people out. I’m nuts when it comes to that book. Who knows how I’ll behave someday when my name is sprawled across the cover.)

Overall, I spent an hour and a half of my time and donated $17 to the library, and walked away with 18 books. I didn’t even have to feel guilty about my shopping spree, ‘cause the money was going to charity (which is what I told The Husband when he saw all that I brought home).

Right now, I’m forcing myself to finish 50 Shades of Gray (Holy bad writing, Batman. But that’s a blog entry for another day), but can’t wait to dive into my new collection. What should I start with first? What are you currently reading?