Monthly archive for October 2012


It is very gloomy today. Just the GLOOMIEST. It has been raining steadily since last night, and the whole world is cold and dripping and somehow both grey and brown at the same time. Plus Ellie has woken up at least once a night every day since we have been back from vacation, so now we are in full coping mode, and by coping I mean feeling tired and questioning our parenting skills. Will she eventually just stop with this, like all of her other short-lived sleep issues, so we should just wait it out? Or is it time to take more drastic measures? Why do we still feel like we don’t know what we’re doing, even 18 months into this parenting gig? And why don’t we have any cookies?

But it is a perfect day for cocooning inside, which is what Ellie and I are doing. Well, I am cocooning, she is napping. Soon there will be requests for “bobble?” (bottle) and “crack-ah?” (cracker). I am wearing the cozy pants I bought while we were in Washington. I love them so much you can pretty much assume that if I am at home and they are not in the wash, I am wearing them. Mike said to me the other day, “Oh, are those pants new? I don’t remember seeing them before!” and I took that as an invitation to buy another pair. I’m even going to pay a small fortune for shipping. Such is my devotion to these pants.

My dentist appointment last week was pretty much a non-event. I consider it a non-event when I don’t cry and/or have to come back sooner than anticipated for something that requires needles and drilling. I was pleasantly surprised to discover it was just a cleaning, which means no polishing or examining or fluoride treatments, but she told me at the end of it that my next appointment will be quite a bit longer, since they have to inventory my teeth and enter them into the computer (or something? I stopped listening when she said “over an hour”) which is unfortunate, because while apparently I am capable of forgetting that an appointment will be SHORT, I doubt I am similarly capable of forgetting it will be LONG, so the Pre-Appointment Dread will probably start earlier than usual.

My hygienist, Leah, is a very nice woman who sings along with the radio and keeps up a constant stream of pleasant, neutral chit-chat while she works in my mouth. She only works two days a week, and the receptionists know I am so attached to her that if she calls in sick on a day when I have an appointment, I am unwilling to see someone else, so they just reschedule me. (That happened once, and the other lady was SO MEAN. And lecture-y! That appointment was not a non-event.) If she ever quits or retires, I will probably just have all of my teeth removed and get a set of dentures. Anyway, at this particular appointment, her chit-chat was a little … off-putting. Not offensive, exactly, just … not things I wanted to hear during my appointment. Here are three examples of things she told me while scraping at my teeth:

  • If I continue to pick at my bottom lip, which I do when I’m stressed, it is possible I will get skin cancer. She’s known lots of people who pick at or bite their lips, and none of them have gotten cancer, but she learned about it in one of her courses, so she thought she’d mention it. (LIP CANCER?!)
  • Her daughter is 10, and she realized the other day that she has forgotten most of her daughter’s early childhood. So I should make sure I pay really close attention and write everything down, because it is all a blur and in 9 years I will be inconsolable because it will all be gone and I won’t ever get that time back. (*sob*)
  • In 2015, she will have been a hygienist for 30 years. As she was telling a young graduate who just joined their team, nothing has really changed in 30 years. (I was born in 1981. Unless there were significant improvements or changes to dental care between 1981-1985, this means there have been no progress in her field over my lifetime. This is … not something I would brag about. Especially not to someone who already thinks what you do for a living is cruel and unusual.)

I hear some peeps upstairs, so I guess naptime is over. I’m going to have to break the news that we are out of graham crackers. There may be tears, people.


Remember when I posted that babies are boring, but toddlers are awesome? And even though nobody commented and SAID this, you were probably all thinking, “Oh Lauren, just wait! Toddlers are not awesome.” On the one hand, I appreciate that nobody said that, because “just wait” people are terrible people, but on the other hand, I have discovered I was wrong about toddlers. I’m sure it goes without saying that I love my little Ellie Bean, and I find her adorable and hilarious and she is the best, best thing … but it is also worth mentioning that yesterday was a very difficult day. If we had had any ice cream in the house, I would have been eating it directly out of the carton by 1 p.m.

I may have to go out and get some ice cream, because today is not looking much better. Ellie is a lot happier, so I am a lot happier, but I am also UNhappier, because I have a looming dental appointment, and that can suck the joy out of even the happiest of days. The last time I posted about dentists, my friend Lindsay commented and said that for someone who hates the dentist, I sure go an awful lot. That is a sad, sad truth. I hate the dentist, but I have also been cursed with terrible teeth. They look lovely, but under the surface lurks some malevolent force that wants to strip me of all future happiness. I go for a cleaning every four months, to try to keep that malevolent force at bay. Well, that’s not entirely true. I book an appointment for every four months, then the week before when they call to say they’re looking forward to seeing me, I reschedule the appointment, so it’s usually about every five months that I go. Plus I regularly have to have fillings put in or replaced, because my teeth are made of swiss cheese and some sort of crude spackle.

I originally had an appointment scheduled in September, but then Ellie’s daycare day changed from Wednesday to Thursday, so I had to reschedule. I was VERY happy about this, and very smug, because they couldn’t fit me in with my regular hygienist for another month, so I got a month’s grace without it even being my fault. Then I was eating a peanut, and a piece of my tooth broke off, and I ended up having to go get it fixed on the very same day my original appointment was scheduled for. Which was infuriating, but also kind of funny. (I suppose you have to respect a universe for a dirty trick like that. Well played, universe.) Anyway, that original appointment from a month ago is in 90 minutes and I’m just typing this here so that if I don’t make it, you will remember me as I was: a brave, brave soul who never once complained about going to the dentist.

Slipper drought

Kitty on the move!

Today is the last day of vacation, which is both sad (no more lounging around the hotel! no more margaritas with dinner! no more having someone else make my bed every day!) and happy (no more missing Ellie!). Luckily, Ellie spent the week with my parents, which means I could just focus on the missing, without having to do any worrying. It also means that Ellie now has a Hallowe’en costume. I’m not sure what we’re going to do with her that day — can you take an 18-month-old trick-or-treating? or will that just look like Mike and I are begging for free candy? — but I have a feeling we will get our money’s worth regardless. Kitty costume at breakfast! Kitty costume at the park! Kitty costume while watching Sesame Street! It has a TAIL, people. An honest-to-goodness TAIL.

We had to change hotels this weekend (Mike’s conference is actually two conferences in two different locations) and this hotel is so, so lovely, and it is in a harbourfront area, which reminds me that one of my biggest life goals is to someday live somewhere with some actual water. It was kind of drizzly today, and a little grey, but it was quite warm (25C) … at least, I THOUGHT it was warm, until a nice Southern girl in line with me at a coffee shop said it was definitely a pumpkin chai kind of day, isn’t it FREEZING out there? Er, no. Cold is what I will be whining about when we’re wheels down in Toronto tomorrow. And then again every day until May.

Which reminds me, one other good thing about returning home is that there should be a box waiting for us, containing my beloved Old Navy slippers, which are finally back in stock. I ordered three pairs, such is my devotion to these slippers, but now I’m wondering if that was enough. If you were going to stock up on something you love that is shoddily constructed, how much of it would you buy? I remember asking my friend Chris, when a seasonal beer he loved was available again, if he would buy a lot of it, and he said something crazy about how special things aren’t special anymore if you have access to them year round. This is not my life philosophy. I believe in STOCKING UP. If there is ever such a thing as a slipper drought, you are all welcome at our place.

Reality TV education

Mike and I are currently in Arlington, VA on vacation. Well, I’M on vacation, while Mike is at an actuarial conference. This means I am hanging out in the hotel room while he does his work stuff, and occasionally wandering aimlessly around the neighbourhood surrounding our hotel room, which unfortunately is right in the middle of a business area, so there’s not many sights to see. Which is okay, because we’ve got all weekend to explore, and in the meantime I’ve got some work to do and I have American TV channels to keep me company. In between the campaign ads, there are occasionally brief moments of actual television! With shows we don’t get at home! I’m enjoying it while nibbling on some foods we can’t get at home. America, I don’t want to live in you, but I sure enjoy your entertainment and snack products.

The hotel doesn’t seem to have the American food channel, which is a darn shame, but it does have E! (The exclamation point belongs to the channel; it does not represent my level of excitement about it.) (To be fair, my level of excitement is pretty high. Maybe I would have used the exclamation point even if it wasn’t required by branding.) I’ve been half-watching a lot of reality TV, mostly shows involving various Kardashians, and it has been VERY EDUCATIONAL. Did you know that you can have a “sock line” if you’re a celebrity? And that your “sock line” can introduce you to the world as a legitimate international businessman? And that having the release of your “sock line” delayed is a devastating blow to your self esteem? Also, they keep running a commercial advertising a show about one of the Jonas Brothers and his wife, and in the commercial the brother gets a mysterious phone call and the wife says her heart is “literally broken”. Which, er? If it’s literally broken, you should probably get that looked at by a professional.

Gotta go, a show is starting called “Fatal Honeymoons” and the teaser clip featured a woman tearfully asking, “I mean, who DIES on their HONEYMOON?!” I think I need to change the channel.