Welcome to Snarkfest

Welcome to my snarky corner of the web. Join me as I discuss everything from wine to chocolate. There may be a few other topics mixed in there too. I talk a bunch about my amazing offspring, 24 and 21. I sometimes go on and on about my secret crush on the amazing Mike Rowe. I talk about things that irritate me or things that make me happy. Sometimes I just talk to hear myself talk. Feedback is always appreciated but please make sure it's respectable. No nudity or profanity. I'm the only one allowed to be profane. But any and all snark is welcome and appreciated!

Monday, June 23, 2014

10 lbs GONE!

Hey Snarklings. Those of you who know me know I don't fall for shit. Well, maybe that's not 100% true. I do tend to hope for the best in people and sadly, I've been burned over and over. BUT, when it comes to buying into a trend or a GREATEST NEW THING, I tend to yawn and move on with my busy day. I'm skeptical and I don't hop on many bandwagons. I don't normally believe it when people tell me "Oh you HAVE to try this, it's the BEST way to (insert goal here, like grow hair, meet your future mate, lose weight, have fuller, richer hair, get bigger boobs, blah blah blah).

That being said, I WILL tell you that I've lost 10 lbs just this week. "But Snarky! How in the world did you do that???" Well keep your pants on, there, slick, I'm about to tell you. My friend Kate is a rep for a product called Isagenix. She's had a lot of success on this plan, losing 38 lbs in 3 months. And when she first told me about it, I was naturally skeptical. Except for the fact that so is Kate. She's just as skeptical as I am. We've both been around the block a few times and we don't really believe a lot of hype and hoopla (hoopla doesn't really have anything to do with this post, I just like saying it. Hoopla! Hoopla!) Ok, shut up Snarky. Get back to it.

So after meeting my goal with my DietBet last month, (and winning back my bet PLUS $6.66!! And is the irony lost on ANYBODY about that number??) I decided that I wanted a bit of a kick-start to really help me get back on track with losing weight. So I called Kate and said "look, how about we work out a deal? My money's really tight these days and I don't have extra cash to buy a month's worth of the Isagenix product, but could we work out a deal?" So if you want to say that this is a sponsored post, then fine, it's a sponsored post. But it's also a post that tells you that this product really does work for me. And NO ONE was more surprised than I was. Trust me. I was totally ready to lose like, 2 lbs and then be all like, 'oooh this is stupid, the scale's not moving and I'm hungry and wah wah wah' but I'm not. The scale IS moving. It's moving down by 10 lbs since I started it last Monday.

I had lost about 6 or so lbs in the month that I did the DietBet. Not much over the course of a month. So imagine how pleased I was when I stepped on the scale this morning and saw that I had lost more in this one week than the whole month that I was just watching my calories and trying to exercise. It's an easy plan where you're putting something in your stomach every 2 hours throughout the day. A shake in the morning, mid-morning snack, either a lunch shake or a healthy lunch, snacks at 2:00 then 4:00. If you had a shake for lunch, you have a healthy dinner. If you went the healthy lunch option, have your shake for dinner, then a snack 2 hours later and I swear to God you are NOT starving or hungry all day.

The shake also comes with a 'Greens' powder to mix in and this thing is chock full of all sorts of healthy shit. I'm telling you, if I wasn't on the program myself, I'd tell you I was full of shit. But I swear, so far, it's working for me. I'm not ready to chew off my own arm, I have not stabbed anyone in the eye with a spork, and it's been a really easy plan to follow. I've made chicken, quinoa, roasted veggies, and several other healthy meals for my family this week so they're happy too.

I will keep you posted as I complete the next 3 weeks of this program, but I'm hopeful that before the end of this month I can drop another 10 lbs. We shall see. At the end of this month I'll be posting some pics in my Snarkfat page of this blog so you can see for yourself that it seems to be making a dent in my body! If you have any questions, leave them in the comments. If you're interested in learning if this is for you, email me and I'll put you in touch with Kate. Just go to my "Contact Me" page for my info.

Stay tuned, Snarklings!

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Remember that blogging conference I attended? Check this out!

Oh I know what you're saying, you don't have to speak it aloud. You're saying to yourself, "She went to a blogging conference over a week and a half ago so why hasn't she posted anything about it? What a loser." Well shut up. You don't need to harp on me, I know I've been a lazy slug. But geesh, I DO have a full time job ya know. AND a house to keep (excuse me: HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA). I'm sorry but life's been busy, so cut me some much needed slack, okay?

There is a bunch of stuff happening that you may not know about so I'm slowing making my way back into the blogiverse. One idea at a time.

BlogU14 was absolutely amazing. Like, totally phenomenal. I geeked out from the minute I got out of my car until the minute I left the parking lot for the long (long) drive home. The first 2 people I came upon were Rebecca of Frugalista Blog and Kerry from House TalkN. And let me just tell you, I was TOTALLY star-struck. Seriously. These are blogging ROYALS in my book. I love them and I wasn't afraid to tell them (over and over. I think there may be a restraining order (or 9) in my future). I feel like the teacher from Romper Room with the following sentence: I saw Jessica from Four Plus an Angel, Bethany from Bad Parenting Moments, Stephanie from Binkies and Briefcases and one of my ULTIMATE faves, Meredith from Mom of the Year. I turned the corner to get my name badge and saw Kim from Let Me Start by Saying. Oh. My. God. Then I went into the candy bar and met Andrea from Underachievers Guide to Being a Domestic Goddess and Tara from You Know It Happens at Your House Too. Holy Blogging Gods, Batman!! I've died and gone to blogging heaven. Then, slowly I turned around and found myself face to face with her. THE ONE. The genius behind People I Want to Punch in the Throat, Jen. I probably scared her a little, what with the drooling and the blank stare, but I was starstruck. Know who else I got to meet?? Karen from Baby Sideburns. She's so tiny I could put her in my pocket, but I didn't because that'd be totally creepy. (but seriously, I could have).

But you know what the REALLY bizarre thing is? People knew ME. ME! Folks were coming up to me and saying "Oh my God you're Snarkfest? I LOVE you!! Tell me about meeting Mike Rowe!!" It was just a very surreal experience. I texted my husband and said "Hey, how weird is this? People KNOW me here, people are coming up to me like they KNOW me." His response was this: "You are a famous blogger, who interviews famous person." You can read about that here and watch all the videos here.

And the one thing I know you're ALL thrilled about (since you all had to deal with me posting, FB'ing and Tweeting every damn day about how I wanted to #getschooled at #BlogU14) is that I WON BACK MY REGISTRATION FEE!! Here I am with the stunningly beautiful Anna Luther from My Life and Kids as she gives me my money. Isn't she gorgeous?? (and not because she's giving me money, I swear).

Photo courtesy: @TheBlogU on Twitter
Friday we had an opening reception (with cookies! and beer!) and I got to meet a bunch of my fellow Pee Alone authors. VERY excited to meeting them in person. I was totally fangirling out. I met so many awesome folks that night that my head was spinning. My roommate and fellow Pee Alone co-contributor Bethany Meyers of I Love Them Most When They're Sleeping was the QUEEN of photobombing that weekend, as you can see from these pics below:

Me and Katie from Somewhat Sane Mom (and Bethany)

Me and Carisa from Do You Read Me? (and Bethany)
I was so excited to meet so many of my favorite bloggers at Friday night's welcome party:

UN-Photobombed pic of me and Katie from Somewhat Sane Mom

My gorgeous roommate Bethany Meyer and me

The 3 sexy moms who wrote It's Really 10 Months. LOVED these ladies, from L to R, Natalie, Kim, Me & Celeste

Totally hilarious Suzanne from Toulouse & Tonic

Holy crap I'm almost sitting on Kim Bongiorno's Lap! Kim's the genius behind Let Me Start By Saying

I was so happy I got to meet Paige Kellerman in person, I almost peed! (ok maybe I did pee)
Me and Nicole Leigh Shaw, Ninja Mom. She's tiny and the most hilarious person I've ever met

OH. MY. GOD. Meeting Rebecca from Frugalista Blog made my night!!!

The sessions that the faculty led for us were informative, educational and pretty much KICK-ASS full of great advice for bloggers. The topics ranged from going from writing a blog to a book, dealing with Pinterest, Twitter Facebook and Insta-something or other. Also on the list of subjects was how to make money with your writing and your blog, becoming a better writer and so much more. The selfless bloggers who doubled as our teachers were so generous with their time and their knowledge, and I applaud every one of them for what they did for us.

After all the sessions were over, we ate the crap outta some awesome cupcakes and then headed back to our room. Bethany, Michelle from Momma O's Musings, and Marguerite from Skipping Towards Happiness decided to go outside and enjoy the remainder of the amazingly beautiful weather. We sat on the lawn of this truly incredible campus and soaked in the sun and spoke about a million different topics.

After dinner, we came back to the room and got ready for the prom thrown for us by the folks at NickMom. And yes, here is how I looked in the dress. THE dress. The dress I got from Goodwill that nearly killed me.

Sexy anonymous date and me. You can't see my butt bow from here.
What an amazing time at the prom. I danced more at the NickMom Prom than I did at my own prom 12 years ago (or so). Shut up. It was an absolutely blast, as you can see from these pics.

Our suite-mate Caroline from Not Enough Wine in the World

Sexy bitches, Christine of Keeper of the Fruit Loops and Bethany

Bethany, Celeste, me, Natalie and Kim (It's Really 10 Months) We. Are. Hot.

Quite possibly my favorite picture of all time. Me and Kerry from HouseTalkN.
She was my Long Duck Dong. I was her sexy girlfriend.

The beautiful Carrie from Just Mildly Medicated. Don't let the chair fool you, she rocked out!

Jennifer of Real Life Parenting. I felt like I had known her for years!

This is the sexy Shit-Tay-Tay, aka Stacia from Dried On Milk
The one guy who came to BlogU14 turned out to be just a fantastic fella! Mike from Papa Does Preach                 

The incredible faculty who schooled us at BlogU14. I love every one of them. Hard.
But as is always the case, all good things must come to an end. We woke up Sunday morning and went to this PHENOMENAL little hole in the wall called Paper Moon Diner. When I tell you that this place has unbelievably amazing food, I swear to God I am NOT lying. We were STUNNED at how delicious this food was. If you find yourself in the Baltimore area, GO TO THE PAPER MOON DINER. I swear, you will NOT be disappointed.

So there is my BlogU14 recap. I had a tremendous time and I can't wait to go to BlogU15 next year!!

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Bacon and eggs and other tales from Snarkfest

Hey Snarklings. Let me tell you a little story. A few years back, I received a phone call while sitting at my desk working and it was 16 (who at the time was probably 14). Apparently, 14 (who at the time was probably 12) came home from her PT appointment and made herself bacon and eggs. Now, before you go getting all ‘oooh, you should NEVER let your children use the stove unsupervised’ on me, understand that this was NOT something that 14 has EVER done before. Have we allowed her to cook eggs, soup, or God forbid Ramen noodles alone? Yes but we’re usually somewhere in the house when she’s doing it.  But bacon? Nope, this is a first for 14. One thing you need to know about 14 is that she is an aspiring chef. No shit.  14 spends more time watching Food Network than Nickelodeon (unless, of course, One Direction is on, then Bobby Flay can go pound salmon cakes up his butt).  She’s gotten different tips, ideas and suggestions from Food Network and she really has made some cool creations. She even texted me a picture of a salad she made while at her grandma’s house. So I wasn’t horribly bothered by her bacon-cooking. But I can’t say the same for 16.

16 was suffering from bacon and egg envy.

Back to the phone call. 16 says “Mom, 14 came home from PT and made herself bacon and eggs and I asked her if she’d make me some and she won’t.” Now imagine me, sitting at my desk with a room full of interns to my left and a room full of my boss to my right. I just stared, unbelieving, at the phone thinking “think fast rabbit….” I told 16 to put 14 on the phone. When 14 got on, I said in my most terse, stern and quietly furious voice, “make your sister bacon. Don’t ask me why, just make her the bacon. Because I said so.” As the whining and arguing and ‘but why can’t she make it herself’ laments went on and on, I hung up on her. After a few moments, after calming myself down and taking a few breaths, I texted her: “Because she is your sister and u love her. You are the one who loves to cook.” To which 14 shot right back: “It’s bacon! I could heat it up in the microwave if I wanted to! That’s not even real cooking!!!” I believe the second and third exclamation points weren’t necessary but I digress. I replied: “Then show her how.”
14’s response? “This should be fun.”

I’m envisioning 14 in a red cape, devil horns and a pitchfork, with the flame all the way up telling 16, ‘put your face closer to the pan, smell the bacon frying, feel the heat from the grease, don’t be a sissy, get right in there! You wanted to learn!’ And in my sick imagination, I see 16’s contacts melting to her eyeballs as popping grease shoots up and hits her face like bullets. But I hoped for the best, and I did not hear the fire department sound any alarms so I can only assume that no houses were burned to the ground in the making of bacon at my house.

But wait, there’s more.

A few days later in our little burg there was a water main break, and we received word that there was a ‘boil water advisory’ in effect until further notice. Sweet. I had 2 cups of coffee, showered and brushed my teeth in that unboiled water, since I didn’t get that little slice of info until I got to work. Once again, I was at my desk when my phone rang and I saw that it was 14. I counted to 937 and answered it in my most pleasant, quiet, calm mommy voice. “Mom, can my bestie come over and help me clean my room? It’s okay with bestie’s parents. And then after my room is clean, bestie’s parents will come get us and take us to their house.”

“No, clean your own room.” I said, trying NOT to attract attention to the fact that I was, once again, talking with one of my children on a personal call. “But mom…. blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah…..etc”

“Fine, do what you need to do. I’m tired of fighting with you. And make sure you and 16 don’t drink any water. There’s a boil water advisory happening.” I relented.

“I know, the township called and told us. But I really want a drink of water. Can I boil some and then put it in the refrigerator?” asked my adorable 14.

Now, while the idea of my 14 year old daughter cooking bacon wasn’t something I found to be terribly, horribly frightening, the idea of my 14 year old daughter boiling water, then putting it in a glass and putting the glass in the fridge to cool off scared the bejeezus out of me. I could not contain my displeasure in my response.

“Absolutely not.”

“But why not? I want a drink of water!” 14 pleaded. Now, I try to get my kids to drink water, I really do. I never keep soda in the house. We have milk, we have juice, we have Mio, we have Gatorade and we have lemonade mix. That day, and for the first time in her entire life, she NEEDED a drink of water. She proceeded to hound and beg me to allow her to boil a pot of water so she could have a drink in 2 hours when it’s cool enough to drink. Jesus, by the time it’s cool enough to drink, the water main will be fixed and she could just turn on the damn tap.

“NO. I’m not going to argue with you, my answer is NO. Period. The end.” I said through clenched teeth.

“Mommy, you sound angry. Is everything alright?”

Ya think???? I need to remember that this is my youngest baby daughter, the one I love, the one I adore, the one I’m going to sell to the gypsies if she doesn’t stop calling me at work to ask me for a drink of freaking water.

It is, indeed, true. God made babies cute so we wouldn’t leave them on a church doorstep with a note. But you can only carry cute so far. 14 years is a long time to carry cute. I’m thinking the statute of limitations on cute may just be nearing its end in my house.

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Oh the horror!!!

Just when you thought it was safe to turn PBS back on the television....

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

12 year old gets a tattoo, mom allows it...

File this under the 'are you freaking kidding me' file. A 29-year old mother from North Carolina is facing charges after she gave parental consent to allow her 12-year old daughter to get a tattoo. Read that sentence again, I'll wait.

12-year old daughter. REAL tattoo. Not a fake tattoo. Not one that scrubs off with some rubbing alcohol. A REAL. FREAKING. TATTOO. On a 12-year old girl.

My head is spinning. The charge: Tattooing a person under the age of 18. Her defense: "My child, my right."

Dear Lord, WTF???

There are things that I let my children get away with, and there are things that just make me look at my kids and go "NO FLIPPING WAY, JOSE". My 16 had expressed interest in a belly-button piercing. She hasn't outright asked, but she's mentioned it. My response? Not gonna happen. Turn 18 and want to do that? Fine by me, but don't come crying to me when it gets infected and it hurts. But under my roof while your under 18? Sorry, Charlie. The answer is no.

What do you think about this? Would you allow your 12 year old child to get a tattoo? Even if he or she said please?

Yeah, me either.

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Why I hate technology...

Ever have one of those days where you could just pull out your hair in clumps, scream and throw things? Yeah, that's me today.

In addition to the remote possibility that not one but BOTH of my girls may or may not have missed the bus (I'm in a shitty mood, you decide which), today was my day to submit my final weigh-in for the Diet-Bet in which I've been participating. If you don't know what that is, read this. Now keep this in mind. I've been doing REALLY well with this thing, and as of yesterday, I was within .2 lbs of my goal to be a winner in the bet. There's like, $640 in the pot and everyone who loses 4% of their starting weight is a winner, so if half the folks don't reach their goal...cha-ching!!! Mama gets a new Clinique eyeliner!!!

But I digress (as I normally do). So I ate well yesterday, went for a 2 mile run in 25356423% humidity last night, hydrated my ass off and had no crappy snacks. Got on my digital scale this morning and it said I had gained 4 lbs. So I shot it. (no, not really)

Then I moved the scale and it said I had lost 2 of those 4 lbs. When I repositioned the scale again I had not only reached my goal weight but had lost an additional .2lbs. YAY!!!! So I snapped a pic of the number with my keyword written on a piece of paper (that's how they keep you honest, didn't you read the link I posted?). Then I stood on my tub ledge and took a full body shot (you do this at the beginning and the end of the bet but all pics and weights are kept secret, no one in your group sees the pics or the weight unless you want it made public. And seriously, who wants THAT??)

Oh look, I digressed again.

Anyway, I took both pics from the phone, emailed them to myself WITH NO ISSUE. Got on the computer, downloaded both pics, submitted them and BAM! I'm a winner. Until I got my confirmation email that I WAS, indeed, a winner. Except the full body picture of me didn't look right. Upon closer inspection, I realized that I'm a dumbass and had submitted the original full body shot of myself. So now I look like an ass submitting the same picture as before AND after. Fucknut. So I emailed support and confessed my dumbass-edness to them and they emailed me back and pretended that I wasn't a dumbass (when I KNEW they knew I was) said that they'd decline my submission and I could submit again.

So I uploaded the REAL 'after' picture and resubmitted and BOOM! I'm a winner again. Except I wasn't. Because THIS time, it was declined because the full body shot of me wasn't one of me standing on the scale.

Image courtesy: Onlyinthecove.com

Now here's the issue. I don't have a full length mirror in my house. We HAD one but 16 slammed a door and it broke a few years back. So when I weighed IN, I had to stand on one of my dining room chairs, which is NOT an easy task because the chair seat isn't much bigger than the scale, so when I'm getting on the scale on the chair, it's not that easy, nor is it all that safe.  Oh, and here's another issue. I had not had anything to eat or drink before my weigh-in. and after I submitted the FIRST full body pic this morning, I had a cup of coffee. Keep that in mind, because it's important. (Digressing again)

Remember the first paragraph about me being in a shitty mood because the girls may or may not have made the bus? Yeah, well I drove 16 to school while drinking my cup of coffee. Then I came home and dragged the dining room chair upstairs, got my workout clothes on for the weigh-out, carefully got back up on the chair, then stood on the scale. And I had gained 6 lbs. Remember that cup of coffee?? Yeah, it WASN'T THAT HEAVY!!!  And remember when I mentioned that I have to move my scale around a bit before I find a good weight? And remember how small I said the seat on my dining room chair is? You can imagine my aggravation. Move the scale a centimeter to the left. BOOM, I lost 2 of those 6 lbs. Move it back a hair, BOOM, gained .5. Someone just shoot me. It probably would've been better had I just lost my balance and fallen, because that would've been MUCH less aggravating than playing 'Find My Real Weight' with a scale and a damned chair.

Eventually, the scale read correctly. So then I had my full body shot of me on the scale on the chair, and the shot of the weight. I quickly emailed both pictures to myself, hoping to get them uploaded and re-submitted before I left for work.

Easy as pie, right? If you answered yes, YOU'RE WRONG. I checked for 20 minutes and neither picture came through. Just like when you have a dial-up internet connection, my phone just kept telling me that the pictures were sending....... sending.......... sending.......... sending........

Are you feeling my pain yet??????

Image courtesy: edtatschsupport.com
Right now I'm so done with weights, bets, scales, dining room chairs.

Anyway, I got to work this morning, shut off my phone, turned it back on, resent the pictures, they came through, I uploaded them, my weigh-out was accepted and BOOM! I'm a winner!!! Now all I have to hope for is that the other 12 ladies failed miserably so that this will all have been worth it when I win $640. If not, I'll have to split that pot with the ladies that DID reach their goal.

So in conclusion, my day started off fairly shitty. It can only get better from here, right? And the good news is, I'm down 9.8 lbs from 1 month ago, so that's something.