Crayons, FBeeps, Tweeps and Other Things You Didn’t Know You Needed. With Music!

Yesterday, I was so excited to come home and write a blog post, because it was my reward for surviving Monday and Tuesday. (And, I apologize now to Amy, in comparison to whom I have absolutely no right to bitch and complain about taxes. At all. Ever. But, I’m going to do it anyway, because it’s a good segue into the rest of my rant story. Please forgive me.)

Image by Gary McCoy

I spent Monday and Tuesday preparing our tax returns, which was a huge project and made me very, very sadface, because we owe about a billionty dollars to the IRS. (And, as an aside to the IRS and White House and whatever Secret-Service-cloak-and-dagger types troll the blogs of random, upstanding citizens like me, your stupid rules and forms are fucking IMPOSSIBLE to understand. Impossible, I say!! I have an undergraduate degree in English, with an emphasis in written communication skills, as well as a damn law degree, and I cannot – for the love of Pete, coffee and all else holy – decipher the utter nonsense that is the Internal Revenue Code. Plus, if we paid more in taxes again this year than GE, I’m mailing our next estimates with a gift from my daughter’s backside.)

Lucky for me, I go see a friend of mine on Wednesdays. (She keeps insisting she’s my “therapist,” but I pay her a lot of money to hang out with me once a week, so I can call her whatever I want. Plus, she’s a very nice lady, and she has a comfortable couch with lots of pillows and blankets in her office and that feels very friendly.  Oh, and she makes me tea.) Anyway, I saw her yesterday, and usually after I see her, I leave all hopped up on the high you get after spilling your guts out to a semi-stranger, the angst of which usually gives me super-good blog post ideas. But, my “friend” and I actually had a sort of happy, progress-was-made, so-proud-of-you-for-not-killing-anyone-during-tax-preparation kind of chat, and I left feeling a little … empty? Actually, I think blank is a better word here. Because I definitely wasn’t feeling sad or alone like empty implies. I felt more like a brand new coloring book; excited about the prospect of what it’s going to become when you get your hands on a box of crayons, but – really – it’s kind of boring until you add some color.

Except, I HAD NO CRAYONS!!!! (Okay, I have enough crayons in my house for a small army of kindergarteners, but – metaphorically speaking – no damn crayons.)

I put the word out that I needed some post ideas.  My FBeeps (who are my Facebook friends and to be distinguished from my Tweeps.  Plus, don’t you think this is the very perfect-ist of nicknames because of my potty mouth?  Me, too.) sort of, kind of helped.  Stephen not only gave me an idea that I’m saving for a future post but also remembered to tell everyone how mean I am as a teacher, so double gold-star there. But, Jim, I cannot write an entire blog post about frosting, because everyone knows what really matters is the cake. Duh. But, hey, if you wanna guest post here and debate the merits of cake versus frosting, I’m your Huckleberry.  You better bring your A-Game.

Point is – you guys were NO help. Then I remembered: yesterday was WORDLESS Wednesday. Whew. That explains it.

This morning, I woke up with THREE blog post ideas. THREE! Guess what, though? This isn’t one of them.  You will just have to wait for those.

Like I do every morning, I grab my phone off my nightstand and check in on the FBeeps and Tweeps. I usually can’t find my glasses, because I’m a bit of a sleep thrasher apparently, and they sometimes end up on the floor … in the bathroom. I’m too smuggled into the warm, soft, cozy sheets and blankets to leave my bed – especially for something as trivial as eyesight  – but also because, by then, Helene has waddled down the hall and snuggled in next to me, which is the best reason ever not to leave the bed. So, I read by closing my one bad eye, making me able to see the phone screen and read (most of) the words on it. Like this:

Me, looking at my phone, without my glasses. You know, in case my words didn't quite capture it for you?

(By the way, slowly I’m realizing that my iPad is like the telephone we gave my grandmother that had buttons on it the size of Oreos to keep her from calling random strangers and talking for 30 minutes before she realized she had no earthly idea who she’d called.)

So, as I laid (lay, lain, lied … shit, I can NEVER remember this one) there with one eye open, I saw I had a message on Facebook from one of my favorite people, which was exciting all by itself.  Yet, it was even more exciting, because she told me I have to drink alone when I come see her in a few weeks.

Wait. What?

C’mon, people! Do the math!  THERE’S A BABY COMING!

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Why are baby feet the absolute cutest? And why didn't I think to do this when my kids had baby feet? Why?!

New babies always make me reminisce on the days my babies were babies. That, in turn, made me think about my friend Leo over at Mommy Tracks. She posted not long ago about how she likes to burn CDs of great songs about parents and children as a new-baby gift. (This is my blatant attempt to give Leo a boost on her blogging efforts, because she’s a super-good, extra-interesting writer.)  Aside from the fact that I think that’s a very cool idea, I also liked it because I actually  have my OWN list for my peanuts!

And if that wasn’t coincidence enough, WordPress tweeted yesterday about how to embed songs from Spotify into your posts, so . . .


If you haven't actually colored lately, I highly recommend it. Super relaxing in a surprisingly effective way.

I am nothing if not a giver; therefore, I present to you my most marvelous list of songs that will make you want to kiss your kids all over their tiny (or grown) faces, no matter what disgusting-ness is going on there at the moment.  Grab a tissue (and maybe a wet wipe) and enjoy!


15 comments on “Crayons, FBeeps, Tweeps and Other Things You Didn’t Know You Needed. With Music!

  1. sj says:

    Okay, first of all, BEFORE I COMMENT ON ANYTHING ELSE (because I’ll forget if I don’t say it RIGHT NOW) Swamp Ophelia was my album in high school. I can not even begin to tell you how very many times I listened to it over and over. I think that probably says a lot about high school for me, but still. And omg Power of Two was probably my favourite song on the album, so…thank you for that.

    Second – While I was messing around with the embedding Spotify last night (yes, we both posted about this today, how cool is that?) I discovered that if you link a playlist, it will show six songs on that playlist. What this means to me is that I need to stop making 30 song playlists and instead focus on microplaylists. It’ll be like twitter for Spotify, right?

    Also, I am a sleep thrasher as well, so the phone stays under my pillow or it would wind up across the room under the baby’s bed or something. I squint with one eye at it in the morning as well (it’s sad, but if I wake up before my alarm goes off, I check my email to see if I have any twitter or wp notifications). I recently learned that I have an astigmatism, so that probably explains the one eyed squintiness.

    • ProfMomEsq says:

      Okay, ME TOO! Except, I didn’t discover them until I was in college, and then I was like – Holy Shit! Where have you two been?!? I had this little shitty Walkman, and I played that tape SOOOOOOOOO many times. But, do you know how hard it is to “repeat” a song on a cassette tape? It’s very, very hard. Frustratingly hard. And then your tape gets a weird kink in it from rewinding it so many times, and you have to eject it, and find a pencil, and try to jimmy-jack the kink out by winding the pencil around in the bumpy reel. I’m tired just thinking about it.

      Also, I knew someone way smarter than me would figure out the trick to Spotify. Thank you for the tip. I made the songs into a playlist on Spotify, and I tried to figure out a way just to link to that, but it was not working. I don’t like to get mad when I blog, so I just gave up. Now, I’m all determined again, because I always dreamed that someday music would follow me around during the day, like a soundtrack. Life is way, way cooler with a soundtrack.

      I have astigmatism, too, so we are total twins. In fact, I read your blog this morning through my good eye, and I know ALL about the four things you learned. 🙂

      • sj says:

        I am going to respond in depth to this more after we watch Community with the oldest and I have some wine. Because I have THINGS to say and I don’t have time right now, unfortunately.

        • ProfMomEsq says:

          I will wait, but not patiently, because the other thing we have in common is that I stalk my own blog and Twitter feed, too.

          • sj says:

            I just figured out that the reason my last playlist was only showing six songs is because some of them were from my iTunes account and likely not available on Spotify. I just sent you a DM with a video I made of how to do it.

            Man, let me tell you – your comment about the pencils and cassettes TOTALLY hit home! I was the QUEEN OF THE MIX TAPE when I was in high school. In fact, I’ve recently gotten back in touch with some of the few people I didn’t hate in high school and they still have the tapes that I made them. One of them has even recreated them as playlists for herself, so that was pretty cool. I always made sure there was enough room for everything I put on there, so no cutting off in the middle of the song. 90 minute tapes were my favourite, I hated the 60s because it never felt like there was enough room for ALL THE SONGS.

            [happy sigh]

            I only just found out about my astigmatism a few months ago when I went to get new glasses. I was disappointed to learn that because of my sooperspeshul eyes (and because I’m so incredibly nearsighted) that I don’t (and will never again) qualify for any of the deals on glasses. Oh, and I will probably always have to wait longer for them because they have to put so much more work into them. I don’t know what I’ll do if I get to the legally blind point. If they can’t correct my vision enough for me to be able to read, that will be the saddest day ever.

          • ProfMomEsq says:

            I haven’t checked the DM yet, but thank you in advance for that! How cool!

            Mix tapes! I just watched the movie Young Adult the other day, and when what’s-her-bucket-played-by-Charlize-Theron digs the mix tape her high school boyfriend made her out of a shoe box in her closet, I thought, Yep. Spot on. I actually still have one from my high school days, too. Sadly, I have nothing on which to play it, so I couldn’t begin to tell you what’s on it. Pretty good bet there’s some Erasure, Echo & the Bunnymen and possibly some Nine Inch Nails. It’s also possible it’s the Beastie Boys’ License to Ill album. It was a confusing time for me, and I dare say my iPod playlists are not much better now. I like to think of it as “eclectic.”

            Ditto — nothing, NOTHING! worse than songs that cut off. Super annoying and always made me think of how my uncle would torture my mother. He was a pianist, and sometimes he would play an entire song except for the verylastnote. Then he’d walk away from the piano. It caused this special gene to grow inside my mother than she handed down to me, so that unfinished songs are my own private hell.

            I’ve known about my astigmatism since the first time I tried to get contact lenses, which was in college. I gave up on that pretty quick because of the expense and because the only kind of contacts I could wear where the put-in/take-out every single day kind, and they were hard and uber uncomfortable. But, I’ve heard that now even people with astigmatism can have that Lasik surgery. My husband had it years ago, and I actually watched him have it down (Sooooooooooo gross. I can handle a bone sticking out of your arm and even the smell of burnt flesh, but I CANNOT handle anything in the eye. So, when I say I’d rather put a hot stick in my eye, you know I really don’t want to do whatever the other choice was.) But, it gave him better than 20/20 vision. Ever thought about it? If it really came down to doing it or being unable to read books, I would do it. I’d need a lot of damn sedatives, but I would do it.

            Going to check DM now…

          • sj says:

            Oh, oh, oh! One of the VERY FIRST TAPES anyone EVER made for me was of Paul’s Boutique when it came out. It’s still my favourite Beastie Boys album, and that might be why. My husband and I have had this argument so many times. He thinks that Check Your Head is clearly superior, and I know that he’s wrong.

            I still had a ton of mix tapes up until a few years ago (and something to play them on), but we moved ‘cross-country and things were either discarded for the move, or melted sitting in storage.

            One of the reasons I ❤ Spotify is because I can feel like I'm back to making tapes again. Dude, mine didn't have that annoying squeal/squeek between tracks, or anything. I was an effing PRO. It's kind of a shame how easy it is to make a playlist for someone now, when it used to require hours and hours of thought and practice. I mean, hell, you don't even have to make your OWN mixes, anymore, you can just pick a song and the computer does the rest. I still prefer doing it the old way. If I make an ACTUAL mix for someone, it gets a name and album art, just like I used to make.

            Of course…I don't have to rubber cement pictures on that stupid little index card they issued for the track list anymore, but the principle is still the same.

            I have never tried to get contacts, because I'm a big time allergy sufferer, and I know there's no way I could ever put something in my eye. They're already dry enough as it is, I can't imagine how bad they'd be if I were trying to wear contacts. My eye doctors have always steered me away from them.

  2. You quoted “Tombstone!” *swoon*

    I just got done with dealing with the worst eyecare place ever. I ALSO have special snowflake eyes and am almost blind, sj. Ugh. Annoying. And I ALSO do the one-eyed phone-squint every morning. Before everything else. 🙂

    • ProfMomEsq says:

      I have no “favorite” movie, but “Tombstone” is definitely one of my tops of all time.

      I now have a mental image of us (the us being you, sj and me), on a “Brady Bunch”-style split screen, simultaneously appearing with our squinty-eyed faces and collectively unruly bedhead, staring into our phones. The boxes on the other side contain our mothers holding our glasses and scolding us about going blind trying to read like that. The middle ones should all just be Dumbcat. He seems like he’d be a great buffer. You know, except for the claws.

      • “Why are you doing this, Doc?”
        “Wyatt Earp is my friend.”
        “Friend? Hell, I got lots of friends.”
        “I don’t.”

        I cry EVERY DAMN TIME I watch that movie. Every time. And I’ve seen it probably 20 times? At least? Val Kilmer owns that movie. He is BRILLIANT.

        Oh, that would be a good opening scene for a kooky buddy comedy starring the three of us. I like that a lot. Can I have a hot actory boyfriend in the movie? Ewan McGregor, maybe?

        • ProfMomEsq says:

          Dammit. You had to go there, didn’t you? Sniff.

          Doc had the best lines, especially the whole Latin exchange with Johnny Ringo, but how can you resist this: “You die first, get it? Your friends might rush me, but not before I make your head into a canoe!”

          You can absolutely have Ewan. He would be so lucky. I’d really rather have a magic wand or a super power, but if I have to have a boy, I’m going with Ken Wantanabe. Toss up for me between the way he looked in the “Last Samurai” and “Inception.”

          Is Dumbcat really getting a sibling?

  3. Leo says:

    Thanks for the shout out, my dear! Two more things we have in common: Freakin’ baby feet! seriously. The cutest. I didn’t do baby feet photos either. And Tombstone. My little guy is Jonny. We love to say to him “Why Jonny Ringo” in our best Doc impression. I am going to blog more. Totally pumped about some ideas I have. But first: coffee.

  4. gkinnard says:

    Wow, there’s a lotta stuff in this post! Writing a reaction to it might take a couple of days, so I’ll just say that I love, love the squinty-eyed photo of you looking into your phone! (And you’ve shown me that I’ve got to check out the Spotify thing.)

It's boring when I do all the talking around here. Speak now, while you can get a word in edgewise.

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