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In The Kitchen With Aunt Becky

This was originally posted on Mommy Wants Vodka, content reproduced with author’s (me) consent. 

One of those things that I always figured I’d do when I was bored and had scads of free time, which, you know, I’m just swimming in with my three kids and houseful of pets, was to learn to decorate cakes.

I somehow forgot when I was hatching my Great Plan, that I have absolutely no eye for detail and have about as much fine motor skill as my poo-eating dog. But yes, in my head, I was going to be the next star baker.

Just like I was going to be the next Rembrandt, Britney Spears, and uh, Martha Stewart, because all of those plans were SO SUCCESSFUL.

But when I saw that I could buy something that fit my “I never got an EZ Bake Oven” fix AND test my prowess as a Master Cake Baker, I was all over it. (if you have no idea what I’m talking about, go here)(then come back)(and you should know that I do love me some Pioneer Woman)

Really, I didn’t see how I could go wrong. Except that a 29-year-old woman with a full kitchen of her own had bought a toy cake bakery. That seems all kinds of wrong when you put it THAT way.

But let’s not dwell on the negative here, Internet!

Microwaving, AWWW YEAH!

Now, see, THAT is the kind of cooking I can do. Short and sweet. None of those wonky STEPS that I can misconstrue or FORGET because I’ve accidentally wandered off to see what happens when I put the cat in a box.

While I don’t know why someone would want a pamphlet of “DUFF” inside a box clearly marketed for children, I suppose that is neither here nor there. He seems a little, uh, CREEPY and vapid, doesn’t he? (I know he’s on the Ace of Cakes)

No accounting for taste, I guess. Which is why you read my blog.

While shit, man, that’s waaaay too many instructions. I don’t need to read instructions. Those are for sissies.

Why, isn’t that perfectly darling? A wee cake decorating set! I can’t figure out what most of the doo-hickies are for, but, you know, I AM READY TO LEARN. Providing I don’t have to READ WORDS and FOLLOW INSTRUCTIONS.

Well, THAT is fancy-pants. It’s either a toothbrush holder…or a sex toy. Kind of advanced for children.

Huh.

If parents can get outraged by the Fresh Beat Band, why not providing our children SEX TOYS!!1!! OH THE HUMANITY!!

Guess you know what I’ll wander off to do.

….

BRUSH MY TEETH, YOU PERVERTS.

Here we go, with some mother-humping yellow cake. That’s wicked yellow and I stirred it approximately 4.3 times before it was mixed thoroughly. Because that is the way I make cake, bitches.

Well, now, here I have expertly poured two thimbles of cake into the microwave pan where I shall bake it for exactly 30 seconds. How can this be bad?

(cue ominous music)

Well. That…uh, looks appetizing. It’s really a shame that I can’t make this blog post scratch and sniff, because this smells like burning hair.

nom nom nom SOYLENT GREEN nom nom nom.

The Soylent Green patties are, I should note, about the size that one might expect to feed a wee field mouse. I am holding my lens cap up for perspective.

Cue the old joke… “the food was so bad….And there was so little of it!”

In an effort to cover up the horrible yellow color of the cake, I have chosen blue as my fondant color. Note my expert mixing technique. I should probably get a medal from the Mixing Olympics.

This fondant looks like a pile of, well, blue…poo.

I’m certain that I can roll it out and make it look better.

Oh. Well. Um.

Maybe I should have read the directions.

I know, I’ll read them now!

Okay, that looks NOTHING like what I’ve got.

Uh. Well. I KNOW. NEXT STEP.

Icing. I can cover this with icing. THAT’S ALL. I bet it’ll look as good as new in NO TIME.

That looks a lot like we’re about to artificially inseminate something. WICKED.

My pre-iced cake on it’s pretty little platform. Doesn’t it look like, well, someone with no thumbs decorated it?

Scratch that. People without thumbs could do better. BLIND people without thumbs could do better.

Aunt Becky’s Weapon of Mass Destruction. The ICING GUN. Prepare to meet your MAKER.

Uh. WHOOPS.

I genuinely do not know what I did wrong here. It appears as though my icing gun misfired.

I, um, I swear guys, this NEVER happens to me.

(cue inappropriate jokes)

UGLY CAKE, PREPARE TO MEET YOUR MAKER, uh, PART II.

Awww! Lookit my whimsical, drippy heart! With some balls thrown on it for good measure. Because everything is made better with colorful balls and icing.

(go ahead)(make your jokes, people)

Ladies and Gentlemen, this is the reason that you do not want me to cook when you come to my house. THIS is the reason that I order takeout.

Because while this appears to have been done for comedic value, it actually was not. This was genuinely the best that I could do.

For serious.

Dose of Happy: I Will Find My Balance

This year, it’s time to take action. It’s time to pull our heads out of our asses and make some plans for world domination.

How? By telling the world, not what we want to do this year, but what we will.

So what will YOU do this year?

2019 is the year I will find my personal equilibrium, the balance between what I must do, what I should do, and what I want to do. It’s not going to be easy, as I have a horrific time saying no and even more horrific sense of guilt when I do.

Unless it’s before my first cup of coffee in the morning; then saying no is easy and guilt-free because I’m too tired to care.

When the balance between the must, should, and want is out of whack, I’m a mess. I’m impatient, resentful, irritable, downright cranky, and miserable to be around. Everything becomes a chore, even the things I like to do.

That’s not fair to me, to my kids, to my husband, to any poor soul who has the misfortune of being near me when I’m struggling to keep up with everything.

That’s why I’m making 2019 the year when I will stop that crazy self-imposed struggle and focus my energy on the musts and the wants. The should-get-dones will just have to wait.

I will focus my presence and talents where they can do the greatest good – my family, my volunteer work (that means YOU, Band!), my creative projects, my home, my friends.

I will say yes to projects that are a challenge and will help me to grow personally and professionally.

I will cut the clutter in all areas of my life: physically, mentally, virtually.

I will re-examine my limits, and respect those limits, for when I don’t, it’s not good for anyone.

I will say no to school activities and fundraisers that are nothing but money and time-suckers that prevent me from doing other, better things with my kids.

I will say no to family functions that cause my stress level to sky-rocket, even when I’m told over and over again, “it’s for the kids”. It won’t be for the kids when mommy is stroking out on the floor because the in-laws are being asshats again.

I will ask for help when I need it and not wait for someone to see that I’m struggling.

I will find my balance, dammit. I will.

 

I Will…Come Out On Top

This year, it’s time to take action. It’s time to pull our heads out of our asses and make some plans for world domination.

How? By telling the world, not what we want to do this year, but what we will.

So what will YOU do this year?

It’s already been a rough year for me. Just seven days in, my five-year old son was diagnosed with Leukemia. It has floored me. I am still in shock. Daily I struggle with the WHY WHY WHY of it all.

Still, I can make this year my bitch. I cannot – and WILL NOT – let the whole year be a sinking ship.

I will take care of myself. This means giving myself a break, letting myself off the hook, taking days off work when I need to, continuing my healing through therapy, taking naps… It also means getting dressed every day, showering, and not letting myself slip into a depression. I will continue to do things that bring me joy – like travel – and try to let go of the worry.

I will be there for my son. I will advocate for him and help him create good memories to balance out the less palatable ones. I will continue to give him a stable home life with structure despite the bomb that has gone off in our life.

I will keep working toward my goals – personal and family goals. My husband and I have plans for this year and next – plans we’ve been working toward since we met – and I will not let them get derailed. It would be easy to push everything aside, but the RIGHT thing is to show our son how to live in the face of adversity.

I will nurture my primary relationship. I’ve been stressed and overwrought and altogether tapped out emotionally lately. It’s okay to have low points, I know, and my husband and I are helping each other as best we can. Our relationship is important and provides a foundation for our life as a whole. If we take care of our marriage, the rest of our life will benefit.

I will allow myself to stumble.
I will give myself permission to be less than perfect.
I will celebrate my victories.
And I will make it through this year.

I Will: Dance

This year, it’s time to take action. It’s time to pull our heads out of our asses and make some plans for world domination.

How? By telling the world, not what we want to do this year, but what we will.

So what will YOU do this year?

I wrote a lot on this site about the drama I have in my life, but this time I wanted to write and share something that is made of pure glitter for me: dance.

I started dancing when I was really young, but it wasn’t until I was eleven that I found Irish Dance. I was obsessed with Riverdance growing up, and Mama found a school that just started up in my hometown, so I tried a class. I was instantly hooked. I have done so many other types of dance in my life (ballet, modern, jazz, ballroom/Latin/swing, etc.), but Irish always held a special place in my heart. I loved going to, and competing in, competitions all over the nation and Ireland. I was addicted to the thrill of the performances we would do all over the state, and I never thought I would stop. Fate had other ideas.

When my knee blew out, I thought that I needed to leave all dance behind to be able to put that part of my life away and start a new one as a photographer. I tried to leave it, joking that “dance was my passion, but photography was my love. You never marry your passion, you marry your love,” but soon I found my life missing a huge piece of something. I never could figure out what was missing, but I kept moving forward.

In my classes, I would always practice old steps I choreographed or competed in my head while I worked on other things, and I would always end up choreographing new dance numbers to random songs in my head. But it wasn’t until after my Mama died I finally figured it out.

I was living at my best friend’s house when a fire caused my town to evacuate during the summer, and I went to dance, the same dance class I use to live at, with her little sister. I thought “Well, I’m here, I might as well dance,” and I found myself hooked again. It was coming home after a long time away. Now, I know where I belong and what I am: I am a dancer who is studying photography.

Dance is either magic or pure glitter, depending on what you want to call it. It makes all the world quiet, all the problems just vanish for a few hours, and nothing matters but your body and the music. I love being able to lose myself completely in the movements, the music, and the small, little movements that others find boring. I spend hours remembering how to move my body, how to turn out, how to balance, and how to jump again. It sounds easy, but being able to take my time and just fix my old problems is amazing.

Dance is something I can, and know how to, fix. This is a place where I am safe. Dance doesn’t lie, it is the truest way to see someone’s soul. It is an essence of the person him or herself. I don’t even know if this makes sense, but when your world starts to spin out of control, the best thing I think you can do is dance. It helps you… feel. You don’t have to wear a mask or hide, you are truly free.

It is pure glitter to me, and my resolution is that I will dance! I will remember the simple joy of moving, of perfecting each step, and being in the moment completely. I hope some of you will join me: dance is not just a studio and lesson, it’s all around us. Just turn on music or listen to the wind outside, and dance! I promise, you will feel better and most likely will be smiling and laughing, even if it’s just a moment, and you’ll feel better.

I am a dancer, and I will always dance!

This Year I Will Take Care of Myself

This year, it’s time to take action. It’s time to pull our heads out of our asses and make some plans for world domination.

How? By telling the world, not what we want to do this year, but what we will.

So what will YOU do this year?

I will… walk for 30 minutes a day, five days a week as per an extremely informative video making the rounds on youtube.

I will… trust that the universe will give us what we need, when we need it.

I will… laugh more.

I will… create – write, draw, colour, take pictures, make cards, etc.

I will… meditate.

I will… practice mindfulness.

I will… get outside.

I will… send more happy mail.

I will… get more sleep.

I will… listen to my body.

I will… stop hating myself.

I will… learn to love myself.

I will… be unapologetically ME.

Phew! That’s a tall order. Good thing I’m up for the job!

Guess Who’s Back…Back…Back

Back again!

I want to update you all on what has been going on in my life lately. Some of you may remember me going through a dark time when I last posted, I am happy to say I am doing much, much better! I am happy and content and don’t really have much to report. Which is good!

My son is growing so much! He is getting so big and talking so much and he makes me proud to be his momma everyday.

My husband has gotten a lot better with our son as well. No more spanking! We are working on the amount he yells, but that has yet to be accomplished. Baby steps, that is my mantra!

I went through a rough patch about a month ago where I had a repressed memory, perhaps I will post about it later, it was bad! But I got through it, like I always do. It still doesn’t sit well with me but I am working to come to terms with it.

I am sorry I haven’t been around much to comment on everyone’s posts. I am a full-time stay-at-home-mom, full-time wife, and part-time student, so I have a full plate! But I have a month off from school coming up so I plan to get back into the swing of things and get my groove back.

I love you all so much, and just keep swimming, no matter how powerless or defenseless you feel right now, I promise you it gets better. Just hold on a little bit longer and reach out to us! You. Are. Not. Alone.