Category Archives: Uncategorized

Running Around in Circles

If I could add one thing to my daily routine, it would be exercise.

Ok, ok, pick yourself up off of the floor. It wasn’t that funny.

I do want/need to exercise. I’m a thin couch potato and it’s starting to catch up to me. My blood pressure seems to go up and down a good deal more than it ought to; I have ridiculous aches and pains for someone my age; I don’t have the stamina to keep up with twin toddlers; and I’m at my pre-pregnancy weight yet I’m a blob of jello.

Most of all, I want to be a good role model for the boys. Their dad has a big weight problem and I am just terrified of passing along bad habits to them. We eat well at home – I see to that – but neither of us exercises and Daddy doesn’t practice any sort of portion control whatsoever.

I’m already going to be one of the older moms in the carpool line at school. I don’t want to be the decrepit one too.

I started by say that if I could add one thing… but the truth is that it’s not a matter of can or can’t. It’s a matter of will I or won’t I. So far, I won’t. And I am not sure why.

My excuses:

  1. I am not a morning person, and the idea of getting up at the crack of dawn to exercise after having had little and often disrupted sleep just horrifies me.
  2. There isn’t a stretch of uninterrupted time during the day to do much. If I’m not directly dealing with the babies I’m generally doing laundry, vacuuming, folding clothes, washing dishes, preparing dinner and so forth.
  3. OW gets home from work between 7:30 and 8:00 p.m. every night. After we eat, clean up the kitchen, get everything ready for the next day and get the boys to sleep, it’s 11:00 p.m. and off to bed we go.

I keep picturing myself outside, running laps around my neighborhood, feeling strong and healthy. My wiggly jiggly baby fat begins to firm up, the muffin top over my jeans disappears. I can chase the babies, do laundry, cook a meal and still have enough energy to, ahem, help out my poor, long-suffering husband.

Am I living in la-la land? Is there some sort of tipping point that will give me the push I need to get started?

Do you exercise? How did you start? What motivates you to keep going? How are you able to make it a priority?


That’s my story and I’m stickin’ to it.


Thankful #1

It seems my blogs are frequently morose and whiny. Maybe whiny is too strong a word. I have things inside that need to come out and I guess it’s not surprising that the darker things tend to force their way to the front. And it’s true that I’m frequently overwhelmed and sometimes downright depressed. But there are also good times; sweet times; times I want to last forever.

It’s popular in November for United State-ians to talk about what they’re thankful for. I usually try to avoid doing what everyone else is doing (I’m still rebellious like that), but it occurs to me that being thankful is not trite. I think if I spent more time being thankful, I’d spend less time feeling sorry for myself.

Today has been a good day, so I feel more able to come up with a list of things I’m thankful for. I know that I really need to do this exercise on a day when I’m feeling crappy. Some of these might seem strange, but I include them because I have experienced the opposite of what I’ve listed.

  1. My pre-pregnancy jeans fit
  2. I am, on the whole, healthy
  3. I have four wonderful, healthy, gorgeous children
  4. My unexpected child turned out to be two, and they will always have each other
  5. I have, truly, the best husband any woman could ask for
  6. And he really loves me – he really does and it amazes me
  7. The sun shines into my living room every day
  8. I have a fairly large extended family living close by
  9. I live in a 1st world country
  10. I never worry about where my next meal will come from
  11. I not only have adequate shelter, I have a beautiful, safe, warm place to live
  12. Careful budgeting allows me to be at home with my precious babies
  13. I have a dishwasher
  14. I apparently don’t (yet) look like I was rode hard and put up wet
  15. My twins will grow up with cousins and friends and dogs and love
  16. I can relax enough to write, “What are you thankful for?” instead of “For what are you thankful?”

What is one big thing and one little thing you’re thankful for?

That’s my story and I’m stickin’ to it.

Blog Hop

I’m participating in a blog hop for the first time. Apparently the javascript link won’t work with this WordPress site, so I have to link to the blog where I joined the hop.

Most of the entries seem to be other twin blogs. I’m always looking for blogs about All Things Twin, so this is neat. Here is the blog where I hopped on:

Twinpossible Weekend Blog Hop



Just Bullshit

The past few days have been pretty difficult for me. I couldn’t think of a good blog topic for today. Actually, that’s not true. I have a whole list of topics written down but I just haven’t had the oomph to write about any of them.

This blog is called bare wood – the unvarnished truth, so I’m going to expose the bareness of my wood just a bit.

I think I’m falling into a bit of a depression. I continue to take medication every day, but the color is starting to drain from the grass and the trees and the world around me. My sweet babies seem less and less sweet each day. I can’t fall asleep without pharmaceutical assistance and I don’t want to get up in the morning.

I’m terrified of my own children. I did a rotten job with my first two and I am certain I am and will continue to do a rotten job with the twins. I am impatient and self-absorbed much of the time. It is so hard to manage both of them at once. The thing I’m crying about most often now is that I know it doesn’t get better. Everyone tells me it does but I know that’s not true. It gets different but it doesn’t get better. Crying babies are replaced by tantrum-throwing toddlers who are replaced by defiant kids who are replaced by sullen tweens who are replaced by obnoxious rebellious teens who are replaced by unfocused, irresponsible young adults. I consider all of that to be largely my fault. If I’d been a better parent maybe they wouldn’t have gone along this particular path.

Worse for them is that my mother passed along her mental illness to me and I passed it along to my oldest son. Have I passed it along to the twins too? How irresponsible was it of me to have them knowing about this possibility? I can’t live with more children trying hard to commit suicide and self-medicating with drugs. I know it seems foolish to look that far into the future with Peanut Butter and Jelly but how can I not? I’m faced with the future every day because I know what comes next. I have fantasies of doing everything right this time but that’s just delusional.

Right now the boys seem to be going through a growth spurt, so my already insufficient milk supply is even more insufficient. I nurse and nurse and nurse but they are still hungry. They are beginning to refuse to nurse because it doesn’t come fast enough. I know this will worsen my supply issues even more. They are also barely sleeping during the day and never both at once. The house is going to hell and I can’t manage to get dinner cooked. So here I am failing at feeding my own children and failing to feed my husband or do anything. He’s going to wonder soon what the hell he’s doing supporting me when I can’t even take care of the house. I keep crying throwing up my food because I feel so stressed out.

I know what you’ll say: Get some help. When do I do that? I have a therapist I was seeing regularly before the boys were born but how am I supposed to go see her now? I have to have someone (my MIL or SIL or mom usually) come babysit and what do I tell them about where I’m going? I don’t want them to know. Plus, I don’t even know what to say to the therapist. I feel like shit. Now what?

I’ll probably come out of this after a while. I get nervous about how long it will last but mostly that’s up to me. I need to stop wallowing and just get the hell up and go on. My husband says he thinks depression is mostly about being too inward focused, which is a result of being selfish and self-absorbed. That’s why I never tell him about how I feel. I don’t want him to think that about me. And I often think he’s right. Yes, there is probably some real neurological problem that makes me more prone to cycles of depression and mania but isn’t it up to me, in the end, to take control of myself? Maybe I’ll find the energy to do that after a while. Right now I just don’t have it.

The Four Pounds of Cheese Wrap Up

I’ve been doing the Four Pounds of Cheese project (#FourPounds) started by the lovely Jenni Field and it has gone much better than I expected. The goal was to document all wasted food in the household for a week. Truly, I’m shocked at how little I’ve wasted. Maybe this just happened to be a slow week for dumping moldy shit from the back of the fridge. In fact, I think I’d done a frenzied emptying project a week or so before.

I don’t compost. I know, it’s shameful, but I’ve never really understood how to do it right and don’t know where I would put it. Besides, I have infant twins and don’t have the time (This is my stock excuse for everything). Apparently though, composting food doesn’t count as food not wasted. If it’s food that could have been consumed by a human and wasn’t, it’s wasted.

Enjoy my leftovers!

Monday lunch: This was the remnants of a meal I’d made three or four days before. I ate all of it except for a bit of the squash/zucchini and one floret from the cauliflower. I try not to have clean-your-plate syndrome because it’s bad for my butt. But could I have saved this? It was already going on four days old. How would I have used it? Suggestions?

Monday dinner: I just got full before I finished. I do have eyes much bigger than my stomach but I will say in my defense that this is a salad plate, not a dinner plate, so there wasn’t a lot to begin with and, thus, not much wasted. Veggies from a steam-and-microwave bag (bleh), cubed steak and barley. We had a salad too and I ate all of that. Again, what would I do with the leftovers of this?

Tuesday: No food items tossed!

Wednesday: Onion peelings, a cherry tomato gone off, and half a can of garbanzo beans on which my yogurt sauce curdled. I wasn’t sure whether to include the onion peelings. Do those count? I was making a garbanzo bean thing with garam masala and a lovely coating of yogurt. The yogurt curdled or cooked or something and made a disgusting mess. I tried rinsing it off in the strainer but the curds were all stuck to the beans and wouldn’t fit through the strainer anyway. It was gross. I suppose I could have rinsed off each bean individually so as not to waste it, but fuck it. Both babies were crying and I just needed to get dinner done!

Thursday: Ok, this was a bad, bad day. I ruined all of dinner and threw most of it away. I cooked a london broil in the slow cooker. I use my slow cooker a LOT, and I know how to use it. The vast majority of the time the results are really good. But something went wrong and I pulled a dried out piece of crap from the cooker.

I was going to throw it away but decided to try to revive it in something saucy next week. I also tried to make squash pancakes. Another fail. I’ve never been very good at making pancakes in general. All of them came away burnt AND soggy. I think part of the problem was that I had too much batter and not enough squash. The taste wasn’t horrible but the consistency was all wrong and the babies were so miserable that I was carrying them both around while I cried and tried to figure out an alternative dinner plan. Oh, it was bad.
So I ended up throwing away a large zucchini, two small squash, a cup of flour and a couple of cups of milk.

Friday: No food wasted!

Saturday: Hubs went to Hardees to get us each a sausage biscuit for breakfast. I only ate half of the biscuit but didn’t even think to photograph what I tossed because I never eat all of it. This is a perfect example of how casually we tend to waste food.

For dinner We used the london broil I destroyed on Thursday to make burritos. I chopped up the meat into little pieces and then simmered them a while in some tomato soup concentrate, beef broth, and taco seasoning. I don’t think this was authentic or ideal but it used stuff I happened to have around, LOL! We didn’t finish all of it so I put the rest into a container, labeled it, and put it into the freezer. A lot of my waste comes from having leftovers in the fridge that I never get to, or putting stuff in the freezer thinking I’ll remember what it is. I don’t, and then it sits in the freezer until I’m sure it’s frostbitten and no good.

Sunday: Today was clean out the fridge day. I saved some stuff I might have otherwise dumped. I still threw away about 1/3 of a cup of spaghetti sauce. I’m not fond of tomato-based sauces. I used some of it for my dinner but there wasn’t enough left to make another meal. I couldn’t think of what to do with it and I was tired of looking at it so out it went.

The other stuff that got tossed was cheese. Now, I love cheese. Love, love, love. I love cheese so much that I sometimes can’t bear to part with it even when I should. The endy parts are Parmesan rinds. I only buy aged, D.O.P Parmigiano-Reggiano and can’t stand to waste a shred of it. I keep reading that I can save the rinds to use in soups or something but I almost never make soup. I decided it was time to let these moldy bits go.

There is a bit of feta in there that I was sure I would use and didn’t. Then I forgot about it. ugh.

The last item of shame is an unopened slice of Uniekaas Reserve Gouda. I used to be addicted to this stuff. I’d just cut off hunks and snack on it. As you can see from the close-up picture, it had a sell-by date of October 2010. um, yeh. My excuse is that I bought it at the beginning of my pregnancy and didn’t realize that I would develop a strong aversion to almost every type of cheese during my period of gestation (before this I seriously had a $15-20 per week cheese habit – I like expensive cheese). I kept it around thinking I’d feel up to eating it soon…soon…soon. I didn’t. I’m sure I’d love it again now, but this one had to go.

All in all I’m pleased with my low level of waste this week.
Don’t get me wrong, there have been weeks when it’s been really, really bad. I’ve thrown out pounds of spoiled meat, drawerfuls of rotten vegetables, and shelves full of moldy leftovers. Since I’ve been home full time that has decreased significantly. Now that I have the twins I don’t have time to shop much (do you have ANY idea what an ordeal it is to leave the house with two babies?), so I avoid the “ooooh wouldn’t that be good in a [fictitious] recipe!”
Plus, being at home gives me more of an opportunity to cook real meals. Instead of coming home at 5:30 or 6:00 pm and looking through the fridge in a panic, I can check the freezer and cupboards in the morning and do little bits of prep work and cooking during the day. Who knew I’d cook MORE with infant twins than I did before!

Thanks for encouraging us in this project Jenni!