Monday, October 22, 2012

women's lifestyle expert, apply here

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I was recently asked by Skirt! magazine to be a National blogger on their women's lifestyle website! I am so honored and hardly know what to say! First, I would like to thank the Academy and my family for believing in me even when...oops, wrong speech.
Striking the "Godspell" set at the Dock Street Theater...a long, long time ago
Seriously, this is a very cool development.

Now, I'm not an expert on "women's lifestyles." I'm definitely a woman, and I do have a lifestyle, but that alone doesn't qualify me for the job.  Otherwise I could claim to be a skincare expert because I have skin and care for it.

However, my experience is not irrelevant either. It may even resonate with two or three people out there who might actually read my blog.

Now, as a woman, what exactly is my "lifestyle"?

Let's start with the basics. Basically, I am a wife and mom who works. Show me one who doesn't. What I work at changes depending on what hour of the day it happens to be.

In the morning I work on getting myself and one easily distracted daughter out of the house on time for carpool, regardless of whether the dog has peed on the carpet or someone has had a case of prepubescent hysteria. As I back out of the garage I try not to hit the trash can. Or my husband's car. Again.

Then I work on pleasing my customers at my "real" job (i.e., the one responsible for my bi-monthly direct deposit) by crafting technical manuals and papers and online help and "waving my magic wand" over someone else's mangled grammar. Sometimes I even make coffee, because I am a secure, modern professional woman. And because life is too short for bad coffee.

Afternoons are spent working on picking up my daughter from school on time and thinking about what I will do for dinner after carting my daughter to Irish dance and karate and piano.  (Did I mention how well I work to support the economies of oil-producing countries, even with my 24 mpg van?)

At home I work to get some sort of food into the mouths of my family that doesn't come in a box and get covered with milk. "Breakfast for dinner" does have a place in my repertoire, I just don't want to wear it out.
BLT with tomatoes and okra from my garden and a helpin' of Charleston cheese grits souffle 
Speaking of food, I'm working at keeping nasty stuff out of our diet, like HFCS and phthalates and flesh eating bacteria. So I put some raised beds in our side yard to grow fresh vegetables just like my parents used to. Green things are starting to push through the soil. It's probably a matter of time before the locust (or lice or Japanese beetles) descend, but at least I tried. We'll see how it goes.

I recently worked at losing 25+ pounds and rediscovered my love of fashion. Even shoes are more fun now. I never lost my love for shoes. No matter how the size of your hips might fluctuate, those 4" Nanette Lepores will fit every day. Now it's just easier to balance.

Depending on the day of the week, I work on my music and spend time with my friends at church. They are the most irreverent, silly, God-crazy, sold-out, loving weirdos I have ever had the pleasure of knowing. They challenge me and make me laugh and pray for me when I just can't do it for myself. They prayed my daughter into existence and have changed my life. I love them.

Some time during the evening I work at keeping my dog from feeling completely ignored. Ditto for the husband. And when the stars align, we all work together to keep the house from falling into C.H.A.O.S. (= Can't Have Anyone Over Status).

I work to stay in touch with my family. I love them so much, but - alas - most of them don't use email or Facebook regularly so I have to call them. On the phone. I hate talking on the phone. I have to work on that.

After bedtime snuggles - definitely NOT work - I spend an hour or so working on something that is just for me. It isn't always earth-shaking (reading! writing! shaving! picking my toes!) but it matters.

Then, after everything else is done, I work on staying awake...for just a little while longer. Because, you know, I LIKE being married and I never, ever want to date again. I would sure hate to see certain fires get neglected.
I'm a lucky girl!
I also deeply love that man and enjoy being adored by him. I'm pretty darn lucky that after 19 years of marriage my husband still calls me his "bride" and thinks I'm hot - I've definitely got a good deal working and don't want to screw it up.

So that's this woman's lifestyle in a thumbnail. A really big, Jack-and-the-Beanstalk Giant-sized thumbnail. It's hard to zip up all this red-headed weirdness into a compressed file. Thankfully not everything good comes in a small package.

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