Wednesday, July 31, 2013

One step at a time

So I'm taking a step back from the multi-tasking right now...for awhile there I was trying to do a bit of everything - spending as much time with family as possible, working, blogging, writing articles, and yeah...the Mary Kay.  But that has all kind of come to a screeching halt as of last week when T and I came to an agreement that I would stop Mary Kay all together.   Now my focus is kind of on one thing - getting rid of all of it as soon as possible and recouping my loss as best I can. 
Not an easy task.
I've done some research, and I'm one of many, many former consultants out there who have gone through pretty much the same thing as me.  And by same thing, I mean exact same thing or even worse.  I've become a frequent visitor to, and it amazes me just how widespread this scam goes.  And yes, I said scam.  It's too bad because I do like the product, but the business?  Is a pyramid scheme and a scam.  It's shocking just how many women out there have gone into debt, some into $20,000, $30,000 and up.  Some of these women have gone through divorces as a result of hiding this debt from their husbands.  The thing that scares me is that I did the exact same thing, just not to that high of a cost. 
I'm probably torturing myself in a certain respect.  But to me, it's kind of an awakening.  And a process.  And I don't want anything around to be a reminder of my mistake.  (Did I mention I am hard on myself and hate messing up?)
So for right now, my focus is on getting rid of it all.  So I have somewhat put other activities (i.e., writing) to the side while I close up business.  It's not going to be a quick process, but I'm going to get it done. 
The other part of "closing up shop," to me, involves mending fences in a way.  See, I have this underlying fear right now - that I have alienated friends and family by forcing this "business" down their throats for three years.  I feel like I've used them, I took advantage of them, and I would like to go to each and every one of them and apologize.  T says this isn't necessary, but I don't know.  I almost feel like it's necessary.  I'd like to apologize to you, too, my readers, because I know that I have brought Mary Kay up in previous posts.  And for that, I am sorry for trying to involve you in something that in the end was a scam.  It makes me feel....just...icky.  I appreciate all of my family and friends who supported me and did so no matter what because they wanted me to succeed.  I really appreciate it, but I also really feel bad about it because I feel like I took advantage of that support, whether knowingly or not, I did it.  And for that, I am truly sorry. 
I hope that the "closing" process will actually be quicker than it seems right now.  Because right now, it feels like quite the task.  But I'm going to do it because I can and because I have to make it right. 
One step at a time.

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Momma's got a new ride!

Momma's got a new ride, folks!  I know I posted about the sadness of turning in my Saturn and having a car payment, but Robin told me to enjoy the fact that I do have a new vehicle.  And I totally am, believe me.  It's be ages since I've had a new car...nine years to be exact.  My Saturn didn't have automatic windows or even remote keyless entry.  I'm still getting used to that.  

I heart this thing.  I miss my Saturn, yes it is true.  But it's pretty sweet driving with a decent car for a change.  You know, one that's radiator fan isn't going out, the AC doesn't work, and it scratches every time you go over a bump because the shocks are out? 
BUT, I must say I do have an overwhelming sense of fear....I am the girl who hits parked cars.  I am desperate to not ruin this thing.  It's so shiny and pretty. 
And yes, I do realize that standing next to a car on an incline makes you look tiny :-) 
But I heart my new ride!

Monday, July 29, 2013

Holy Tylenol

I kind of knew it would happen some day.  Something of Aubrey's would fall into the church's holy water font.  Yeah, that's not something you'd read just any day, but....I knew it would happen.
When we go to mass, we sit in the narthex area outside the sanctuary, mostly because we've tried to go in there with Aubrey a few times, all huge failures involving in her and mommy in tears.  So until she's past this toddler age, we sit outside.  Sitting outside of the sanctuary means she runs around.  A lot.   Past the Easter candle (Please, Aubrey, be careful.), past the holy oils (Please, Aubrey, for the love of....), and then around the holy water font.  It's open and pretty much at her level.  She's danced around it a lot, but the past few times, she's tried to throw something in it.
See the thing with Catholicism, is the holy water....once it touches something, it is blessed.  I know for those non-Catholics out there, that might sound odd.  But as soon as that bottle of Tylenol left her hand, I thought "oh no, we have a blessed bottle of generic Tylenol."  I've heard that you shouldn't throw away things that have touched holy water.  I mean, we burn palms that have been blessed.  So I was wondering - do I bury it?  Do I burn it?  Do I give it to the priest? 
And yes, I'm that Mom that let her kid play with a bottle of medication.  But hey, she was chewing on the cap, and you know, at some point you just say it isn't worth fighting over.  It's child-proofed and closed.
So we scoop it up and hide it from Aubrey.  After mass, I sheepishly approach the priest and say "Father, I have a question.  My daughter threw her Tylenol bottle in the holy water.  What do I do with it?"  He laughs and goes, "well, if there are any miraculous occurrences after, please let me know.  But otherwise, just wipe it off and throw it away."  He got a good chuckle out of it, as I laughed and said "Oh, okay, I wasn't sure if we had a blessed bottle of Tylenol or something." 
Oh Aubrey....
But honestly, that's not the first thing I've seen chucked into the holy water.  Some poor mom lost her iPhone a few weeks ago. 
They should install some kind of cage around it or something.  With toddlers like Aubrey running around, who knows what else will be blessed?

Friday, July 26, 2013


It's been a rough week.  It really has.  I don't always get 100 percent personal on my blog...there have been a few occasions where I've truly opened up.  It's most cathartic more than anything.  I don't look for pity.  I just look to write how I feel.  This week I realized something that kills me inside, and it is so hard to admit.  I've failed. 
We bought my new car on Wednesday.  The Saturn was dying.  So after four hours at the dealer and haggling to get the price we wanted, I drove away in a red 2013 Chevy Cruze.  I still have to get used to the fact that I'm actually driving a NICE car.  I love it.  But with a nice car, comes a nice car payment.  Yes, we've negotiated it, but still....that Saturn was paid off, and this car now has a payment.  Welcome back into the world of car loans.  Yay. 
So that brings me to the hard part.  For the better part of three years, I have been honestly trying my best as a Mary Kay consultant.  I'm no sales person by any means, and I'm not sure I made the wisest decision when I signed that contract.  I joined the ranks of independent beauty consultants as a way to make extra money and pay off credit card debt from law school.  It's pretty ironic.  Why?  Well, because all it did was create more debt.  The thing they don't tell you when you sign that dotted line and get your $75 starter kit is that they pressure you to buy more and more inventory to really succeed.  I will not in any way disclose how much that debt came to be, but I will admit that I kept it from T.  Mostly because I was severely ashamed and freaking out.  I finally told him.  We took a loan out to pay off the credit card.  But that involved a pretty hefty payment, one that I still couldn't meet.  No one wants to host a party.  No one wants to be pressured to buy stuff, and the only way you can really make money is by discounting, which in the end causes you to not make a profit at all. 
I tried so hard.  I really did.  I bit off way more than I could chew because I'm already stretched thin enough with a job and a child, but I thought I could do it all.  I'm a type A personality so failure was not an option.  But yesterday I had a come to Jesus moment with T, and I have decided to quit.  To walk away with my losses and we will work as a family to pay off the debt. 
But I've failed.  I started this venture thinking I'd be this successful person but I failed.  Me, the person with a law degree, failed.  Failed at selling makeup.  How ridiculous does that even sound? 
And in the process I lied to my husband.  That is the part that hurts the most because I truly feel like I let him down.  He is upset, and rightfully so, but we worked it out, and we will be able to pay this off over time.  It'll involve huge sacrifices, but he has sworn we will make it work.  We said for better or for worse, and we meant it.  I just want to know I can regain his trust because I have no doubt that I caused some of that to erode away.  I'd feel the same way. 
Failure comes with a lot of guilt, shame and just an overall sense of defeat, and that's kind of where I am at the current moment.  Not only have I failed my business, but I failed my family.  And that's what sickens me the most. 

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Body image

In reading the yahoo news the other day, I came across an article that actually had me pretty enraged.  Granted, this was after a glass of wine and a long day buying a car, but still.  There are people out there actually giving Kate Middleton (Catherine if I'm being proper) a hard time for showing her post baby bump when they left the hospital. 
What the what?
Seriously?  When talking with my employees after they showed the pictures, I commented about how awesome she looked for having a baby just one day before.  Twenty-four hours.  Hell, I was impressed with the fact she walked out of there, in heels no less.  I couldn't even walk at that point, and God, the way I looked?  Nowhere near that.  Swelling, sweating, gross all wasn't pretty.  So she looked pretty damn good, if you ask me.
Aside from that, if you click on the article, you see the only thing that's noticeable is a tiny belly.  And people are all like "how is she going to get her pre-baby body back?"  Um, one, she just had a baby, like two days ago.  And two, she just had a baby, like two days ago.  She's not going to be getting sleep, probably feels like hell run over, and working out and losing weight is the last thing on her mind.  If she's anything like me, I didn't even want to look at my post-baby belly when I was at the hospital.  It was just...weird.  Time passed, and it got better, but it was post-surgery so I wasn't a fan of checking it out. 
I have lost thirty pounds over the course of a year.  I'm down to a weight I was in college.  But the one thing I still have?  A baby pooch.  I do.  It's there.  I talked to the doctor who helped me with the weight loss, and she basically said "well, not much you can do about that..." aside from crunches, etc.  But really, I had a freaking kid.  Even if I got to a weight that was way below my goal weight, I'm still going to have it.  What can I do?
I know there are women out there who look like they did pre-baby right after having a kid.  I'm related to many.  Many of these women are able to pull of a bikini with freaking six pack abs.  But not all women are so lucky.   Every woman is different. 
But for God's sake people, she had a kid!  Two days ago!  Leave her alone!  The amount of respect I have for her for looking that awesome, smiling and greeting the press and walking just one day after having a baby is huge.  Girl is tough.  Gotta give her props.  It's just a shame that there are people out there just looking to stir up problems. 
With people acting like this, it's no wonder I worry about Aubrey some day and the body image issues she will have to face....

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Wordless Wednesday

Look at my big girl....and she was actually getting all of it in her mouth, too.  My God, she's growing up way too quickly!


Tuesday, July 23, 2013

News news news

It's time for a little self-promotion.  Sorry, folks, it's my blog, so I'll selflessly promote myself if I want to! :-)
So for those of you who are not aware, I've started writing on a freelance basis for The  I cover three different areas - legal issues, non-profit news and parenting issues.  The majority of what I write about involves the legal area, but I do enjoy covering other areas.  The way the Examiner works is you get paid per click on your story, per share, and per subscriber.  It's not a huge moneymaker but it is a way for me to build a portfolio to expand into other opportunities.  It has taken me to one...starting in September I will be a contributor to  I'm so excited about that and about what is to come.  So, here are a few stories I've covered recently.  Don't feel pressured to read them...but I thought I'd share just for the heck of it.
From a legal nerd's perspective, I find this story incredibly interesting.  Silence can be used against you if you do not respond to police questions before being read your Miranda rights.  I think this is going to cause more trouble than good.  Most people aren't well-versed in the law enough to know what rights they have and don't.  A lot can happen before getting your rights read to you.  And apparently being silent can be indicative of guilt.  Huh....
Another more recent story has been on an event held by a local organization near where I live, Discover Downtown Franklin.  The event is called a "Cash Mob," and after hearing more about it, I absolutely love the idea.   This is the third time the organization has held these events, and basically what it is - everyone who wants to participate meets at a location downtown, each person bringing $20 with them.  The local of the business they will "mob" is kept secret until that night.  Once the name of the business is released, all participants head to that store and must make a purchase that evening.  The Cash Mob has benefited both businesses that were the "secret locations" during previous events greatly.  I was so impressed when I saw information for this event because this truly is a great idea.  And an amazing cause.
Did you know that when you flash your headlights at oncoming drivers to warn them of a speed trap ahead you are exercising your right to free speech?  I had never really thought of it, but I suppose it makes sense.  It really works the same as if you had a loud speaker and informed drivers of the police hiding ahead.  A man in Missouri did just that and was arrested for obstruction of justice.  The suit was dropped and the matter was considered an exercise of his freedom of speech.  He's filing a class action suit as a result, though whether that action will be successful remains to be seen. 
Hey, attorney friends, don't write stories about your clients.  You may end up disbarred, which is exactly what happened to an Indianapolis attorney.  Note to self:  don't write a tell all.  Okay, I think I can handle that.
I love this story.  A man in the district my agency covers decided to rob a bank.  Why?  Because he hates the government.  And he wanted to see if he could.  Well, technically he could, just not successfully.  Doh.
Less funny story - these people don't deserve to be around children or people in general.  I won't describe what they did, but if you are able to read stories about child abuse (and this coming from a DCS attorney), click here.  I hope they get what they have coming to them and that this little kid is able to recover and be placed with people who love him.
Okay, I can't end this post on that note.  Here's the last story I'll share for the day.  It's about a very stupid man who stole the identities of customers of his steakhouse to fund fifteen trips to Walt Disney World as well as two Disney cruises.  He did this in a five month period.  Dang, that's a lot of trips to the happiest place on earth.  He must really be into Disney or something.  I'm just surprised he got away with so many trips, considering he had previously been arrested and put on probation for identity theft in Florida. 
Shameless self-promotion?  Sure!  But like I said, I get paid per click and subscriber, so every bit helps!  One of my loyal commenters, CWMartin is always awesome in sharing them in his blog posts, and for that, I'm very appreciative. 
I'll be back with less self-promoting posts tomorrow!

Monday, July 22, 2013

When it rains....

So they say bad things happen in threes, right?  I'm kind of wondering if that works for things breaking, and if that's the case...I'm wondering what the third thing will be.  Because I really hope it's something insignificant like a dish or something. 
But really, I'd rather nothing else break.
The first thing?  My car.  Yep, my good, old reliable Saturn is being put out to pasture.  We're taking Old Yeller out back and letting her go.  I mean, I guess it's a given because it's a 2004, and it's like 125,000 miles in, so...I should be pleased.  But I was really hoping to get a little more on the car.  Say, 70,000 miles?  That car and I have been through hell and back.  I've hit many a car or curb or wall with that.  We've bonded.  And new car?  Can I really be trusted with a new car?  I've hit like 6 parked cars in my day. 
That and the car is paid off.  No car payment, dammit.  Couldn't that have lasted just a little bit longer? 
No.   The shocks started going out, and we were just going to replace those because that's totally minor.  Well, then last week the air conditioning went out.  And my car started acting really weirdly when it went into idle.  And then the radiator fan went.  And so goes the value of the car, or I think we're at that point where the car is valued less than how much it would take to fix it. 
So we have a day scheduled this week.  T and I are taking the Aubster to daycare and going to the dealer.  I can't tell you how much I'm not looking forward to it. But I'll put my lawyer face on and T will put on his engineer face on because I will not be taken for a ride.  (Pun intended). 
And then on Friday, I stay home to clean the house (yes, that is what I do on my personal days), and about three loads of laundry in the dyer kicked it.  That thing is dead.  It's not surprising because it's 5 years old and when T was in his single days, his apartment was struck by lightning and the thing was burnt out.  So it survived, until Saturday.  And finding time to go to the laundromat isn't easy with the toddler, so I went all pioneer on it and hung dried everything.  Minus towels, but still.  We're getting a new washer and dryer on Saturday. 
Did I mention we're not the Rockefeller's? 
I did lose a necklace down the drain on Saturday, too, causing T to have to take apart the drain to get it.  But that's not something broken.  But I'm starting to think we have bad luck or something. 
I told Aubrey it's time she start pulling her weight.  She's 17 months, let's get a job, kid. 

Friday, July 19, 2013

Random Friday

I'm trying to write all of my posts together during the weekend so that I can dedicate more time to my freelance writing, and this is week two in that endeavor.  Of course, by the time I get to the Thursday or Friday post, I am running short on ideas.  And....yeah, I'm running short on ideas.  So I will end this week with another random Nain post because, come on, you know you love them.  Plus, I shared a lot of pictures this week, so I've been generous :-)

Tomorrow we'll be getting our family picture taken for our church directory.  God, I feel so old saying that.  And I'm Catholic, so I probably shouldn't have said "God" before saying I felt old.  Darn, I feel so old saying that.  But we could use a new picture of the three of us.  Oddly enough, Aubrey has changed so much since the last picture and that was in February.  And like last time, I haven't cut my hair in forever so....yeah, we'll just have to make due.  

This week ends what has been a crazy couple of weeks for work.  July is always busy because it's the start of a new fiscal year for most grant agencies.  I've been scrambling to get reports done, applications in, and I have done 3 presentations for grant applications.  Busy  busy busy, Nain.  I'm considering taking a day off for a "me" day, but then I realize I don't have time for that.  Maybe another day....

One thing I have come to not like so much about weekends....I look forward to them so much thinking "yes!  finally some free time!" and then I spend the entire weekend cooking, cleaning, and doing laundry.  And T spends it doing stuff in the yard.  Sometimes I wish we had the money and the ability to pay for a cleaning service because I almost feel guilty for taking weekend days where we should be spending as much time with our kiddo as possible and together as a family doing chores.  Oh, and add grocery shopping to that list.  I hate grocery shopping.

Speaking of grocery shopping....what gives, Kroger?  No more double coupons?  "Oh but the cost of groceries will be lower..." Really?  Where's the proof in that?  I blame those stupid coupon people on that TLC show for ruining it for all of us.  I mean, we've already started getting less and less coupons online and in the paper.  Now this?  Ugh. 

Okay, old person rant over.  But seriously, every bit does count.  Did I mention I wouldn't mind that cleaning service?  

It's getting to be back to school time around here.  Is that crazy or is it just me? August 1st just seems so early.  They're doing that year-round school thing here.  I'm not sure how I'll feel about it when Aubrey is in school.  I know it's good, but those breaks throughout the year...what do you do with the kids then when you're working?  

And when did it get to be the end of July?  Seriously....this summer went by too quickly.  I love fall, don't get me wrong, but I don't want to wish time away.  Slow down, summer!

Seeing that I am writing this on a Saturday, I just looked at the clock and realized that my kid has been napping for going on three hours now.  That could mean so many things - she's getting sick, she's overtired, which is not going to bode well for mass later or....I don't know.  Maybe I should go check on her.  Isn't there something about never waking a sleeping child?  But, the bright side to this?  She has given me three hours to load pictures and write every post for the week.  Thanks, Aubs!  

I hope everyone had a wonderful week...have an even more wonderful weekend!

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Of summers past...

Second Blooming
This week's Spin Cycle, brought to you by Gretchen at Second Blooming, is on summers past.  Well, instead of going back to summers when I was a kid...which would involve a lot of photo digging and scanning....I chose a different route.  In fact, it was the first one that came to mind.  See, T and I met in the Summer of 2008, and I have so many fond memories of that summer.  Do I have fond memories documented in pictures?   No....sadly we only have these two to share:

These are both from the same event...I volunteered through a group in Indy when I met T, and I got free tickets to this charitable event which was a beer festival.  It was where I introduced T to the beauty that is dark beer.  Aren't we just the cutest?  I think this picture was taken sometime in August, and we met in late June of 2008.

Being that the summer of 2008 was when we first met, and you know, there's that fun phase where you go on dates like every weekend?  (Remember those days, T?)  We did so many things that summer.  Lots of festivals, walks on the canal, ice cream downtown on the Circle, baseball games, cooking out on his patio and just enjoying the nice evenings, walks on the Monon.  Honestly, it didn't really matter what we did.  I was so smitten and head over heels (though not admitting I was in love at the time) that I wanted to spend all of my time with T.  There was just something different about him; I knew it in my heart.  We had an incredible summer, and I got to know him so well, as he did the same for me I suspect.  Plus, we just did so many things.  As time has gone by, mortgage obligations, children...less money, of course, we haven't been able to go out and about all the time like we used to do.  I really would love to go back to those days, though I wouldn't trade my life for it at all.  

So last week's post was about summer now....and it's about making memories as a family, memories that Aubrey will cherish of fun times spent with family.  A lot of the posts this week document just that.  However, when I think of summers past, I think of the memories that T and I share, of the summer when we first met and when the foundation for our relationship was first built.  Those times I will always hold close to my heart.   See, both meanings of summer are equally as important and special to me, but it's funny how the two different meanings intertwine.  

I don't have documented photos of those memories to share with you on this blog, but I have those snapshots in my mind.  And just writing about this right now, I'm replaying them and smiling, thinking of everything T and I experienced back then and everything we have ahead.  

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Michigan Part 2

So we spent the first half of our vacation on the western portion of Michigan, but we headed over towards Detroit, the big "D" to see T's family.  They don't actually live in the "D," mind you, but it does sound much more bad ass that way.  We got there on the 3rd, and on the 4th we watched the big 4th of July parade in the town where T's parents live.  Here's Miss Aubrey all decked out in red, white and blue:

She was little Miss Independent...wanted to walk all on her own everywhere...

Except, of course, when Mommy was around...

"What?  It's totally normal for me to poke at your eyes, Mommy!"

We were in the sun quite a bit, so the poor little thing got a little warm...

Of course, it was a good thing there was a pool awaiting us at Nana's house when we were done.  She loved splashing around and cooling off...

The next day we drove into the actual "D" itself and went to the Henry Ford Museum.  I do realize I look less than thrilled in this picture.  It was a pretty cool place, so don't be swayed by the skeptical look on my face.

They had a ton of Presidential limos.  This was JFK's, and it was actually the one he was assassinated in.

The family in front of a train that I know has some significance, and I swear they told me but for the life of me I can't remember why.  And that's Aubrey's new little cousin Hailey...

Walking with Grandpa....

It was a very big museum for such a little girl....

They had a ton of cool things there.  This was the famous bus Rosa Parks rode...

The Weiner Mobile!

The next day we got to try out the big pool.  She cried at first but after awhile she was so in love.  She at first only wanted me to carry her but that quickly changed to her Daddy.  And then, little brave girl, thought she'd swim on her own.  Seriously, she was pulling a baby from Nirvana's Nevermind on us.  Maybe we should look into swim lessons in the future?

"Oh, Daddy, that was so much fun!"

The rest of the time we did some playing and a little relaxing.  She got some Nana time in.  I'm so glad she's getting to know both sets of grandparents.  It's important to both of us that she have a good relationship with both sets.  She and Nana were checking out the latest American Girl catalog....

It was a great trip and lots of quality time with both sets of family.  We were all three ready to get home by Sunday, but it was a wonderful time.  And (Sarah, ahem) I hope you enjoyed the pictures!  Sorry, I don't really  have much more to share!

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Michigan Part 1

I promised more pictures, and I do not disappoint!  So on our week-long vacation to Michigan, we spent the first four days with my family.  My parents rented a house in South Haven, Michigan, and our entire family came along for the ride.  It was a lot of fun, and Aubrey really enjoyed the time with her cousins.  Here she is trying to take her uncle's iPad...

Look!  A pirate ship!  I wonder if Johnny Depp is on that...

Whenever we go to South Haven, I always get to see one of my dearest friends from college, Kristen.  She was the very first friend I made in college on the very first day being there, and we've been close ever since.  She lives in Kalamzaoo, or outside there so I always get to see her when we go up there.  This was her first time meeting Aubrey as well and getting to spend time with T aside from the brief time she met him at the wedding.

Playing on the pier in South Haven....Aubrey wanted to get out of that stroller so badly.  My little daredevil would have dived right into the water if she could, making me just a tad nervous, of course...

"Give me that camera, Mom!"

We went to Silver Beach in St. Joseph, MI, and Aubrey got to experience sand, water and the beach for the first time.  Of course, we had to begin our day with some beach snacks...

Daddy and Aubrey approaching the water with her cousins...she was so curious...

The water was freezing, but she didn't seem to mind...

She wasn't too sure about walking in the sand so we introduced her first to it by playing in it.  Here she is mining for gold...

You know, I think it has been quite some time since T and I actually took a picture together.  So it only seemed appropriate, and yes, that shirt says "enginerd" on it.  Me and my enginerd....

Aubrey and Mommy playing in the sand...

T being goofy and taking pictures of someone other than Aubrey...

Aubrey actually walked in the sand eventually.  I was so proud of her.  She was walking back and forth when she got off the slide and kept trying to climb up the stairs herself.  She absolutely loved the slide.

We hit the carousel next, but by this point she was exhausted with no nap so she wasn't too keen on it.  But she did last the ride before passing out in the car...

I'll be back tomorrow with part two of the Michigan trip - our trip to the big "D"!