Tuesday, February 23, 2010


Why is everyone so concerned with Shawn and I having kids. Or more specifically, when we're having kids. I want to know. I need an answer because in my opinion, this is THE most personal question you can ask a couple and it seems like it's just flying from everyone's mouths. Fellow moms, non-moms, coworkers, family, friends, strangers… Are people expecting us to respond, "Well we're going to conceive our child April 25 so that it will be born December 25." Someone can check that math for me.

In an effort to inhibit myself from becoming immediately annoyed, I've chosen to instead, take a poll. This seemed like a better option then just telling people I'm sterile. I want to know why it's imperative that people ask us, "Soooooooo, when are you having kids?" I've listed about all the options below I can think of. Pick one. Respond. Write your own. I don't care, I need results. This is an honest, non-cynical, non-judgmental, impartial, bipartisan survey. Help me understand.

List of possible reasons:
- Shawn and I are so good-looking, we must pass these beautiful genes on.
- We'll make great parents and people want to see us fulfill that potential.
- Fellow parents want fresh blood to commiserate with.
- It's merely a conversation piece.
- Everyone loves babies and just wants to see and hold and receive photos of another baby.
- People want Norman to have another buddy.
- I haven't fulfilled my womanly obligation until I've birthed a child.
- People want us to grow up by being solely responsible for another human being.
- People want to see me fat.
- We have too much money and need something new to spend it on.
- Family want us to experience the love that comes with children.
- Those who have children want to be able to relate to us.
- It's the logical next step in a life plan.
- We're not getting any younger and people don't want to see us miss our chance.
- People are bored with us and our ways and want something to dice it up.
- People just want to get a rise out of us.
- The DeBoer name is in jeopardy of extinction.
- It's just expected that someone of my age would want to have kids.
- Parents want someone to take all their hand-me-downs.
- People want their life decisions justified.

Have I missed any? How many people are secretly wondering if I am in fact sterile?

Wednesday, February 17, 2010


Apparently, I'm not great at backing up cars. Actually, what I should say is, I'm not great at looking before backing up cars. A while back, Shawn was shoveling the driveway and told me to park on the street until he was finished. He didn't say pull ahead, he said back up. So, I backed up. I backed right into the only car parked on Ruggles Street. On the bright side, I got to meet our newest neighbors friend, the owner of the car I hit. Her car didn't fair so well but mine only suffered a quarter-sized dent which for now, doesn't look too shabby. The whole incident ended up costing the price of 2 beers, both for me.

Not too long after that, I was backing out of the garage after another good snow. Without looking, but knowing in the back of my mind that it's not a straight shot out of our garage down the driveway because it curves, I plowed out. I plowed myself right up the left bank of our driveway. I got myself stuck, on the side, of my own driveway. To make matters worse, I had to drag my faithful neighbor out to help me push. The kicker… we didn't even have to push. Sara, the said neighbor, proceeded to walk up to my car, took a quick look, sized up the situation and said, "Well, first thing we need to do is get a shovel." A shovel! For crying out loud it didn't even occur to me to get a fricking shovel! A few minutes later we had shoveled around the sunken tire, Sara got in the car… and backed right out. Eye-yi-yi. I'm an idiot. Someone make me a sign.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010


Left hand, fourth digit over. It's without it's ring. I'm without my wedding ring. Until tomorrow at 5pm that is.

We were at the mall Sunday perusing until our movie started and on a whim, went into Helzberg Diamonds to have my ring cleaned and checked. The salesmen came back before any cleaning was done and alerted me that he in fact, could not clean my ring because my middle diamond was loose. He even suggested I carry it out in a bag and not wear it if I wasn't going to fix it immediately. I was mildly alarmed but being the cynic that I am, assumed he was trying to sell us some services we didn't need.

Sensible Shawn suggested he show us under a loop what needed to be fixed to prove he was on the up-and-up. He looked at us, dumbfounded and very politely said, we won't even need a loop. He took a tweezers and gently poked at my emerald. At first I saw nothing but a brilliant diamond. Then… I saw it move. It had enough room to move side-to-side and up and down. Yikes. Turns out, he didn't really even need a tweezers to show us, I could move it with my fingernail.

Mild panic set in. It was immediately followed with immense relief for having had the idea to check out the setting. I didn't need to consult with Shawn or price-compare other jewelers. I wanted my diamond secure. Now. Not because of it's monetary value or even legal or religious symbolism. I don't care about the setting, the wedding wrap or the tainted look of the white gold. I care about the solitaire diamond. The emerald shape that Shawn specifically sought out and had to special order. The diamond he made sure was flawless. It would have broken my heart had I looked down one day and saw that diamond missing.

If you've been married over five years, it's time to have your ring checked. It needs maintenance over time. Leave your ring finger naked for a few days and consult your local, reliable, friendly jeweler.

Monday, February 8, 2010


Mr. Rogers ain't got nothing on Ruggles Street. We have the greatest neighbors. You should want to be our neighbor. Case in point: It has been snowing buckets here since Saturday. So much so that Shawn shoveled this morning before going to work at 7:30am and everything was buried again by the time I left for work at 8:45am. Dreading the drive home and the shoveling that would ensue, I was surprised and delighted to see a neighbor had already snow-blown our driveway for us! And, this isn't the first time. We've come home to a clean driveway on more then one occasion.

This simple gesture doesn't even scratch the surface of our ridiculously grand neighborhood. When we first moved in and were redoing our kitchen, a lovely neighbor, who happened to be a retired plumber, came and helped us install everything for the kitchen sink. He also helped replace our faucet for the wash tub in the basement and even snaked our drain just after Thanksgiving after we discovered a small pond in our basement. This was the same neighbor we had to politely, and repetitively, ask to stop mowing our front lawn because silly us, we wanted to mow it ourselves.

You want more? One neighbor graciously came, cut a hole in our attic and installed a much-needed bathroom fan. Another neighbor came over to take a look at a light socket behind our garage and ended up installing a motion-light that same day. A different neighbor came over to visit and on a whim ended up caulking sealant around all of our kitchen counter tops. A year before that, her husband strolled over and helped us put plastic on all our windows and the following summer, helped us transport and chop down our weight in wood. Even better yet, one neighbor has been known to just show up at our door with a tasty treat, for no particular reason at all.

These acts of kindness don't even compare to the list of items we've borrowed, taken or consumed since we've been here. For example: wheel barrows, a chain saw, rakes, shovels, a mower, axes, cars, fans, wood, tables, chairs, coolers, hard drives, liquor, a mattress, an occasional ingredient for cooking, a grill, a bike, an air mattress, an air compressor, movies, recipes, labor and of course, Oreos. Needless to say, we've made borrowing a habit. We've delayed the purchase of many things, just because we know we could borrow them from a neighbor. We just bought rakes this past fall and better yet, we just bought a shovel this past winter. We have lived in Minnesota for almost 5 years and just bought a shovel.

I don't know how we managed to fall onto the greatest street, but we are thankful every time we lock ourselves out and have to borrow a key to get back in. Or when we need someone to watch the Normster for almost two weeks while we travel to Europe. Or when we want to light our Christmas tree on fire to time how quick it dissipates. Or when we need a place to crash because our house is overwhelmed with people. Or when we just want to sit around a fire, grill some supper and drink some beer.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Inspiration for Persperation

I may have mentioned, I've started running again. I rent a treadmill down at the local Snap Fitness and run about 3.5-4 miles three times a week. Tonight, I kicked ass. I'm not afraid to say so because my ass still hurts, literally. It's the best night I've had. Sure… I weigh more then when I started and sure, I still eat my dose of Oreos and sure, I'm still most comfortable in my sweat pants with an elastic waistband. Tonight though, tonight I felt great… running. Scary.

I attribute this to one thing: kick ass, motivational, upbeat music. The selections below saved my life tonight. They lit a fire to my ass and thanks to Pandora, I'll continue to build this motivational collection for many, many, many more workouts. What music motivates you? Post a comment and let me know so I can keep adding and keep moving!

Disclaimer: I apologize for anyone I may have offended by my vulgar language in the use of the word "ass." I can only blame the exercise. It has me all sorts of hyped up. I'll go eat an Oreo.

Calabria 2008 (feat. Natasja) – Enur

Jai Ho – Slumdog Millionaire Soundtrack

Float On – Modest Mouse

I Gotta Feeling – Black Eyed Peas

The Boogie That Be – Black Eyed Peas

All These Things That I've Done – The Killers

Single Ladies (Put a Ring On It) – Beyoné

Poker Face – Lady Gaga


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