CJDaily's Blog

March 22, 2010

Attack of the Giant Purse Girl

Filed under: Uncategorized — cjdaily @ 9:49 pm

My friend Kate turned me on to this rather hilarious blog written by a friend of hers, who just wrote a blurb on girls with giant purses.  (featured here http://thewittygritty.wordpress.com/2010/03/22/apocapurse/)  As a girl with a giant purse, I found myself nodding in recognition at the list of items found in said giant purse, and noting several omissions.

The bag I carry every day is a large pink, quilted Vera Bradley, the kind I mocked until somebody bought me one, and I became addicted to its giant cavernous depths.  Now, technically this bag is a diaper bag, as it came with a matching baby-changing pad, but Vera Bradley sells an identical tote, sans baby accoutrements, so somebody out there aside from me is using this thing as a basic purse.  And since I do have a baby (ok, a 2 year old) I don’t know if this gets me off the hook as a GPG (giant purse girl.)  But since I admit to carrying it around with me when my child is NOT around, I guess I’m guilty.  Guilty on 2 counts really, one of being a GPG, and another of being too lazy to take all my crap out and put it in a tiny bag for solo excursions. 

Sean made an inventory of all the things he supposed a GPG is slogging around with her on a daily basis, but quite frankly that list was rather brief.  I did my own inventory and will admit to you now what I haul around on a daily basis.  The contents of my bag include:

My phone, my Kindle, a book I am not done reading, a powder compact, mini hand-mirror, lip gloss, chapstick, band-aids, water bottle, camera, usb-cord, several pens, a permanent marker, travel perfume, small comb, breath-mints, sunglasses, keys, assorted change, wallet, bobby-pins, a pony-tail holder, 2 blank greeting cards (and envelopes), a packet of instant coffee, a few packets of Splenda, a bottle of clear nail polish, hand-sanitizer, some Cold-Eeze lozenges, tissues, tampons, and a clean pair of socks.

All that is just for me.  The socks, I admit, are random, but I was going to a friend’s house, and they have hardwood floors, and I thought my feet might be cold, so I tossed them in before I left the house…. hey stop judging me.  I am nothing if not prepared.  Oh, and to be fair, I didn’t itemize the stuff I pack for Annabelle.  The above list was simply MY survival kit.  Wanna hear what else is in my bag?

A baby changing pad, always at least 4 diapers, travel wipes, triple paste, assorted coloring pages, 4 crayons, a sippy cup, stickers, a tiny copy of The Very Hungry Caterpillar, a snack bar, a few tiny plastic princesses, a toy cell-phone, and Baby Einstein placemats that adhere to any surface so she can keep her food germ-free wherever we go. 

My bag weighs about 15 pounds.  Am I crazy?  YOU BET.  But am I prepared?  Absolutely.  Jesse cut his finger Saturday and was bleeding all over and I whipped out a band-aid for him then and there.  He was like, “Don’t you need that for anything?”  I rolled my eyes at him.  “Honey, THIS is what I needed it for.  I was prepared for THIS moment, right here and now!”

I do not have an umbrella in my bag, but there is one in my car.  Same goes for the extra pair of shoes, a blanket, my address book, and a world almanac.  But the car doesn’t count, just the giant bag.  Am I truly nuts?  Would it be liberating just to toss my keys into a teeny little purse along with my drivers licence and a few bills?  Maybe.  When accompanied by small child, the bag must be present at all times, or bad, BAD things will happen.  But if I were to go out on my own?  Could I leave my quilted island of safety and not worry that if I do, someone will bleed and I won’t be able to fashion a tourniquet out of my hair-band? 

Truth is, I like my giant bag.  I like that a mugger probably couldn’t make off with it for more than a block before getting winded and just leaving it behind.  I like the safety it assures.  I like being able to offer someone a breath mint, or bobby pin, when the situation arises.  It’s like being a tiny savior of social moments.  And if you wanna mock the fact that I can’t make it down the street without unintentionally assaulting several passersby, go right ahead.  But you’re gonna rue the day you laughed when you’re on fire, with a sore throat, bad breath, bad hair, and a thank-you card to write, and I refuse to help you out!

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March 15, 2010

Giving new meaning to the term “bail-out.”

Filed under: Uncategorized — cjdaily @ 10:53 pm

Picture this: an old stone farmhouse sits in a sodden field, surrounded by mud-puddles, and deluged by rain.  The basement storm doors are open, and up the crumbling old steps comes a young woman, her face half obscured by her hat, her eyes half-shut in the rain.  She is carrying a heavy pail of water in one hand, obviously straining against its weight.  Reaching the top of the steps, she moves out into the yard, heaving the water away from the house with all her might.  With a look of grim determination, she starts back to the house, moving down the steps to scoop up another bucketful of water and repeats the process.  Like, 200 times.

A scene from the 1800’s?  How I wish.  That mournful scene aptly depicts my Sunday afternoon.  I should have mentioned the strapping young man helping the young woman with the bailing process, but I was having a mini pity-party, and you all were just invited.  Jesse, to be fair, had a much larger bucket than I.  It wasn’t even, by rights, a true bucket, as it was actually a laundry basket.  We should really buy another bucket.

It all started Saturday night.  Jesse went down to the basement to get a beer and came back upstairs with one wet foot and a long string of profanities.  What with the 4 feet of snow recently melted, and an added 3 days of rain, the yard was so saturated that water was literally pouring in through the old stone foundation.  I followed his “You will not effing believe this” down to the steps to gaze in wonder at the lake in the basement.  It wasn’t just puddles, mind you.  It was 5 full inches of water, and things were floating away.  Since the basement is where Jesse keeps his admirable stash of booze, it was reminiscent of a smuggler’s cave, complete with empty Patron bottles drifting by. 

We moved all the boxes out of the water and up onto a little platform in the corner and by we, I mean Jesse slogged into that freezing water while I clutched a stray bottle of wine I could reach from the stairs.  The sump pump was sitting quietly in the corner, not doing a damn thing until Jesse went over and harassed it.  Then it kicked on without so much as an apology, and started chugging water out.  We sighed in relief that at least it wasn’t broken, it just hadn’t turned on for some reason.  Going back upstairs, we congratulated ourselves on modern technology, and opened a lovely bottle of wine while the storm raged on.

Cut to the next morning.  While laying in bed pretending to sleep at 9:30 am, I heard a funny noise.  The sudden noise of SILENCE.  I raised up warily on one arm and looked around but all seemed normal.  I got up to make a cup of coffee and flicked the light-switch on my way past it.  Only it didn’t turn on.  And my first very dimwitted thought was, “Gee, the light’s broken.”  Only it took me a few minutes to realise that the ominous sound of silence and the light not turning on was the total absence of POWER in the house.  And I turned and called to Jesse, “Um, we have no electricity,” and was bewildered by his sudden dash towards the basement.  Hearing the faint splash and high-pitched scream from the depths of the house clued me in, however, to the disaster that awaited us. 

The lack of electricity also meant a lack of sump pump. 

Hence the early morning bucket brigade.  I bundled Belle up and let her watch outside as we hauled gallons, nay, OCEANS of water up from the basement.  There was somehow even more water than there was the night before.  And as my aching arms and petrified shoulders can attest to this evening, it required a butt-load of bailing. 

Descend steps.  Scoop up water.  Turn without spilling it all over myself.  Climb back up (very old, very slippery) steps.  Walk to edge of yard.  Pitch water down little hill into street.  Repeat. 

Despite the freezing cold day, I was sweating like I’d just run a marathon, and though I started with more layers, wound up in just my rolled-up jeans and Jesse’s old farm show t-shirt, a look which he declared to be utterly irresistible.  But honestly, I’ve had worse Sundays.  Belle had a ball jumping in puddles, and begging to be allowed to help dump the buckets.  Jesse and I both got a workout, and the primitive satisfaction of seeing the water slowly (excruciatingly slowly) go down inch by inch.  Our biggest concern was to get the water down enough that it couldn’t ruin the boiler, and once he declared our efforts a success, I felt euphoric.  Of course, I also felt sweaty and grimy and in dire need of a hot shower and a two-hour massage, but since the power was still out, a shower was not to be had, and a massage was a little unfair to ask for, considering my laundry-basket hauling hero. 

But the whole episode taught me that 1. We are SO getting a battery back-up for the sump pump, and 2. Jesse thinks I look hot in a t-shirt advertising local cattle.  Is it true love?

You bet.

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