Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Could We Be Any More Proud?

A month ago, Princess came home with an application; three pages. I asked her what that was and she replied, "I've been nominated for May Fete Court". Um, yay?, but what is that?!?! She said she wasn't sure exactly except she knew it was related to "acedemic achievement" and "community service". She also knew that each grade group had about 20 or so students that were nominated (by their teachers), it would be narrowed down to just a few winners from each group, and there would be a celebration & assembly for those who won.

So, I helped her fill out her application, which consisted of asking what groups, activities, clubs, volunteer work, etc she'd done *while at the high school* and a little essay she had to write. She actually hasn't had much (there *was* at least one thing she could list per question) this year, but I told her to go ahead & add things she'd done in previous years, too. It may or may not have helped, but it certainly couldn't have hurt her chances. She turned it in the following Wednesday, then I sent a message asking for clarification to the Activities Coordinator, and she replied, "...May Fete Court is a tradition at ***** going back 99 years. It recognizes students for their dedication to academic achievement and service to school and community. It is a great honor to be on May Fete Court..."

Last Monday, she came home wearing a crown & holding a yellow balloon. I didn't even blink at the crown (this wouldn't have been the first - or even 5th - time she'd worn a crown at school) but I asked about the balloon. She said, "I made May Fete Court; they announced this morning." She told me that her classmate (since Kindergarten), Greyson, and newest friend, Harmony, also got in. Super-happy excited, she started sharing the details of what responsibilities she had as part of the court, what specifications were for attire, and when the ceremonies were. She needed a black dress and "something yellow" as an accessory. I asked my mother and a few momfriends if they could be there; everyone said yes!

Tuesday, I redid her nails, and Wednesday, after she got home from GSA, we went shopping. She found & tried on 4 dresses at Ross; the last one was perfect (and only $7.99 - that's my girl!). We then went to Target to find a skinny yellow belt. No such luck, but we did find a gold & yellow necklace, yellow & gold bangles, earrings, and a few hair accessories... She ruled out the hair ones, because (remember the crown she was wearing?) she has to wear the crown; she was going to wear on a cool bun, but actually ended up just leaving her hair down. She ruled out the earrings because she didn't want to wear any. She decided on the necklace ($16.99) because it had both gold & yellow; her nails are black with gold & orange glitter, so it coordinated nicely.

We looked at shoes, but nothing struck her fancy, so we went to Payless. Now, normally, we don't shop there (lower quality than what you get at Nordstrom Rack & Famous Footwear), but I figured she would only wear the shoes once or twice, anyway. She tried on four or five pairs (one actually was named her ex-stepmonster's name, so she said something like "I could wear those... it would be like stepping on her every time I walked." HAHA!), but settled on some cute black wedges ($19.99).

In true Princess fashion, she was a bit bummed that a couple of her friends, whom she feels were "more deserving" (better grades, more volunteer work, one is even already in Leadership), didn't make it. I asked her if those friends were mad at her for making it in? She said, "No, they're just upset they didn't... They're happy for me, just bummed for themselves." Oh, ok. I did remind her that they, as well as she, all have the potential to be nominated & possibly on the Court, all other years they're at the h.s.

This past Sunday, the Leadership kids (of which, Princess' bff, KP, is part of) and all grades of May Fete court gathered at the high school for campus beautification. They were fed pizza for lunch, then Leadership decorated the gym while Court practiced. Yesterday, they were presented at an assembly for the the whole school, and last night, there was a ceremony & reception for all Court members, family, & friends.

My mother came out early to take Princess out to dinner to celebrate. She & only one of my momfriends ended up being able to make it, but a few of Princess' friends came too. Everyone took pics and a couple got video too. I keep thinking about how great these things will look on scholarship/college applications... Oh, and she was offered a spot on the Link Crew for next year, too... Application was filled out & turned in, and we are now waiting on that announcement.

Monday, May 11, 2015

Mother's Day

A month ago, my original plan for Mother's Day was the same as it's been for the last 4 or so years; jammies all day with my daughter responding to my every need and husband & daughter making dinner together. Then, I talked to my brother. He, his daughters, & his wife were to be in town that weekend (he is an ordained minister and was officiating his old college roommate's wedding), and wondered if I'd mind getting dressed and joining them and our mother for brunch. After grumbling a bit, I agreed, and mom made the reservations.

Ace is not required to do anything for me except cook dinner; we decided long ago that it was ridiculous since I'm not his mom (same for Father's Day - he's not my dad), but my lovely husband got up early (on his days off, he's normally up around 8a; that morning, he got up at 7a) so as to let me "sleep in", and fed & let out the dogs. I was up by 730a (in this day & age, that *is* sleeping in for me; I'm usually up by 7a). I decided not to wake Princess up yet; I made my own mocha (usually she makes it for me on M.D.), caught up on messages, posted the first of many photos (my mother with all five kids, me & my mama, pics from brunch, pics of Elvis - we've had him exactly a year), then woke her at 830a.

We got dressed and out the door, parked at my salon, and walked a few blocks to West Cafe. T & fam had just pulled up (gotten up front parking) so the girls came running down the sidewalk to greet Princess & I. We got seated, had a good breakfast, took some pics, caught up on life, and left. Firefly will be here over Memorial Day weekend, and I will have her all day on Saturday, so we talked about maybe going bowling. Princess & I then stopped at Victoria's Secret on the way and were home by 1130a.

Princess had been agonizing over "what to get" me and when I told her I didn't want a physical gift, she seemed relieved. She asked what I'd like instead. I said, "...mostly the same thing you've been doing for years; a day of peace, the remote, food & drink when I need it... and one more thing." She asked, "What's that?" I said, "I'd like for you to do all the laundry." I usually just don't do it on M.D., but then it's still there, waiting for me, on Monday. She said, "That's it? Easy peasy!"

When we got home from brunch, she gathered, separated, & started a load of laundry and I did a bit more "computering", then settled in on the couch with my tablet & the remote. She brought me a snack at 230p, and around 330p, she & Ace went to the grocery store to get what we needed for my requested dinner and they ended up doing all the grocery shopping for the week (so we don't have to do that today; yay). They looked up recipes and got started on dinner around 530p; at 645p we ate. They had made wood-planked salmon on the Traeger (brushed with Italian dressing & Saskatchewan seasoning), a basic risotto, and buttered corn. For dessert, they had picked up red velvet cupcakes.

I didn't even have to clear my place, let alone load the dishwasher or clean the counters (my usual after-dinner chore when both Ace & Princess cook); I just went back to the couch. Princess helped Ace clean up after dinner, finished up the laundry, and served me a cupcake with a cup of milk as we settled in to snuggle & watch the season finale of OUAT. Aside from having to get dressed & drive into Portland, it was probably the most relaxing Mother's Day I've ever had.

**edit -- just got a message, left yesterday, from my son on Ace's phone, wishing me a Happy Mother's Day. Love him!**

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Warning... Potty Talk Inside!

Seeing as this is work-related, I contemplated posting it on my work blog, but decided that was not really the right audience for this. So, you get my work rantings; lucky you!

Let's backtrack a little. Every since I can remember in my career, I've been the tallest one there. The owner has, on occasion, asked me to change lightbulbs in different areas of the salon. A few years ago, I took it upon myself to take care of the ones upstairs, as well (the bathroom has one and there are four in the hallway, so no big deal). At some point, I was finding myself not only being the *ONLY* one changing the bulbs upstairs (I get it; you have to stand on a stool or chair to do it, and the other people who worked upstairs with me were older; fine), but also being the *only* one changing the toilet paper (it's a stand-alone one; maybe the roll holder is too snug for most people?) and the *only* one refilling the paper towels (I'm thinking that either no one else knows where the key for the holder is -- above the window sill in the bathroom -- or they can't reach it; again, fine).

Over the last couple years, I've not only found myself being the only one taking care of these things, but also these things being just left for days on end (when I'm not there). I am constantly, after my weekend (from Saturday around 1p 'til sometime on the following Tuesday), walking in to bulbs out (if there aren't some on the shelf behind the door, there are always more in the downstairs bathroom, people!), paper towel packages ripped open (sometimes half gone) on the counter, and toilet paper rolls completely out (there *are* more DOWNSTAIRS!!), or sitting either on the counter, on the back of the toilet, or (my favorite) literally on top of the empty roll still on the stand.

Oh, these things are annoying, but it gets worse. Lately, at least one of the hairdressers (and I'm pretty sure I know which one, I just haven't been able to prove it) is using the upstairs toilet to poop. Don't get me wrong; I understand that we all have to poop at work sometimes... the pooping is not the issue. The issues are: (1) There is no vent/fan in there & the window is painted shut, and she is a fan of shutting the door when she's done AND (2) I keep Fabreze in there for this purpose but she doesn't use it. Another problem is that the other woman who works upstairs (whom I believe is, along with her clients, the one to blame for the lights/tp/pt problems), also either leaves lights on when she's the last to leave (or when she's done in the bathroom; sometimes she even closes the door, so it looks like there's someone in the bathroom when there's not!), or turns all the lights off WHEN I'M STILL THERE!!

Now, for the worst offense -- Two or three Saturdays ago, I came into work (I'm usually the first one there on Saturdays) to find the upstairs bathroom light on, the door partially shut, & the toilet lid down. I took a heavy breath/sigh, pushed open the door, shut the light off, and went about setting up for my first client of that day. Fifteen minutes later, I had to pee, so I lifted the lid... Wanna know what I found? If you gross out easily, now is the time to stop reading... Ok, you asked for it: a huge pile of poop and two big wads of toilet paper... and of course, the smell starts wafting out at that point. So, I made sure I had the plunger ('cuz "something's wrong with the toilet" is the first thing that pops in most people's heads, right?), I flushed, and I sprayed some Fabreze. Everything went down fine, I cleaned the Fabreze off the toilet, used it, waitedwaitedwaited for it to fill (it's an old home), flushed again, washed my hands, and realized my blood pressure was really high.

My biggest complaint with this stuff? IF YOU CAN'T TAKE CARE OF IT, WHY DON'T YOU ASK ME OR P.H. TO TAKE CARE OF IT?!?! WHY JUST LEAVE IT FOR SOMEONE ELSE!??! It amazes me how certain people treat other people's things & places... Do you act like that in your own home? Your parents' place? Your best friend's? I spoke to the owner, and she promised to distribute a memo regarding everyone's responsibilities at the salon (there are similar/related things happening downstairs, as well) when we have all signed our new contracts. Yesterday, I signed mine, and when I gave it back to her, she said that I was the first to do so. So, I (im)patiently wait for the promised memo. In the meantime, I also discussed my disgust with another of the hairdressers (one who is a pretty good friend, and who is highly likely to share my complaints with the offender). Fingers crossed!