Thursday, November 5, 2009

The Gym

Everyone who knows me even a little knows I make working out a priority in my life. Some might even go as far to say I have had moments in my life where I can take my love of the adrenaline high too far.

Like the time three years ago after I had spent 4 days in the hospital for Meningitis, I was back on the elyptical the day after returning home. Or the time(s) I have dropped my sniffling children off at the Gym's babysitting club praying their colds would go unnoticed. All in the sake of a workout.

Working out, expending the energy out of my body is something I crave. Daily. Well almost daily.

When Fireman is working his normal 24 hour schedule and we are all in the groove of school and such, I am at the gym at least 4 times a week, or out in my garage boxing my hanging bag. I have a routine that fits into my life and into everyone elses life (as far as I am concerned). Anytime that rountine gets even slightly knocked off its wheel, we all suffer- some more than others, ask Fireman.

So when the kids get sick and need mommy with them at home all day, or say for example on our way to the car in the morning the kids find a trail of ants leading all the way to my cupboards filled with Martha Stewart's finest baking goodies... I usually end up reluctantly taking the day off from the gym.

Not such a big deal, a day off here or there right? Wrong! I find myself crowding my already refined routine with little incidental projects, like cleaning out drawers or photo boxes. Sometimes I even start a new hobby. One day easily slips into three days to even a week!

So we've been off schedule a bit overhere. Fireman is still home. Though we all our finding our way (slowly) life has come between me and my beloved punching bag. Now, Fireman knows what our routine is here at home. He is very much aware of all the time I take to strategicly plan my weeks events including my gym time. He is also aware of his role in our lives. Usually.

One morning after coffee, I looked over my list for the day. I decided in my head today would be an "off" day for the gym. It must have alarmed Fireman greatly when he looked back over his shoulder from the computer to see me dressed in clothes and not strech pants and a tank top because he uttered words that make my hair and skin do really weird things.

"So no gym for you today?" this was delivered with no eye contact whatsoever.


Within about 45 seconds my mind had raced over all the possible responses ranging from," Why? Do you think I need to go to the gym today?" to "Well, no I decided that since I am adding taking the dog to the vet to my already busy day of grocery shopping, laundry, dinner prep, dropping overdue books off at the library, and picking up a gift before 1:00pm with a four year old on my coat tails that maybe today I could take the day off!" All followed with a look that delivered my message fairly well.

I decided on, "No." Also with no eye contact.

Although his remark, and he makes this remark often, almost always sends me into a crazed thought pattern for most of the day, I decided to drop it. I have told him on my verbal crazed- head days NOT to ask me about the gym, and it's not registering for some reason. I have explained to Fireman why he shouldn't say or imply his stance on my workouts. It is, to me, just like him saying ever so gently that my butt better find a way around everything I have thought to be the priority over my workout and make it happen some way, any way.

This comment has been known to lead me into long bouts of self doubt. Doubting my structure, doubting my ability to plan, doubting my committment. You name it, I can end up finding a way to doubt myself with this one small seemingly benign comment.

All within 45 seconds, I had decided to keep my power for the day and go on as planned. I pushed the comment out of my brain...I decided I was too busy to give it anymore thought. I was even too busy to let Fireman know exactly where he could put the gym.

Those 45 seconds was the best time I had spent that particular day, even if it wasn't in the schedule.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Mommy's Kitchen

Well, I decided to try and earn that silly Mom of the Year award and cook a really delicious dinner. Quite a feat in this house filled with Costco frozen meals. It's officially time for Martha Stewart to show her face in my house...she has been on a very long vacation, just ask Fireman!

I was turned onto a recipe blog called Mommy's Kitchen...the meals are easy and kid friendly, well my kid friendly! I got sooo excited after trying out a couple of different recipes, I choose to venture out and try something requiring a little more brain power. So while Fireman took the kids pumpkin shopping, I gathered my ingredients, donned the $75 apron, and did not open the bottle of wine. I needed all my brain for this one.

I had some red potatoes that about to go bad, so why not peel and mash em up? Everything was off to a great start...potatoes boiling, onion caramelizing, and chicken browning... Even Fireman was impressed (well, he is always impressed when I actually cook) While he helped the kids carve their pumpkins, I worked steadily on preparing a meal close to Thanksgiving good. I opened my bottle of wine and savored my glass of white...piece of cake!

Then it happened. The final step called for broiling the chicken dish for a mere 5 minutes to crisp up the bacon I had so carefully placed a top halved chicken breast basted with a Merlot sauce and caramelized onions...why were the bacon pieces not crisping? Oh well, I'll add a couple more minutes to the timer. I called the kids in to wash their hands and set the table, dinner had to be just a few minutes away. Still the bacon was looking nothing like the final picture. I downed the glass of wine.

I said out loud, "why is this not cooking? Is there another setting besides broil I am missing?" Fireman, seeing his cue and seizing the moment came over to the oven and peeked in. He quietly picked up the recipe. I poured my second glass of wine. "Well doesn't it say broil? Here is the broiler honey..." He opened this magical little door placed purposely on my oven to confuse me. All this time I thought it was storage! I mean that's what my mom used it for...the traditonary storage drawer for the oven safe dishes you never use. I removed the dish from the oven and quietly placed it in the secret oven. The Broiler.

Not a word was exchanged until Fireman saw my second glass of wine was finished, and everyone had raved over my cooking. And even then it was really quite funny. I mean I can not believe I didn't know the drawer was the actual broiler!

Laugh all you want, I know some of you don't know what that drawer is either and to top it off, I know you store your dishes there too! My mom wasn't the only one... at least it makes me feel better to think that!