Sunday, August 23, 2015

Off to See the Wizard (or to California)

I had what can only be described as the worst start to a day ever. Okay. That's an exaggeration and I acknowledge that. But on two hours of sleep ... Everything seems miserably terrible, right?

Anyhow I went to bed around midnight after packing and prepping the house so Mr T could easily manage three days at home alone with Asher while I'm in California for business. Making Mac and Cheese for lunches, doing laundry, doing dishes, cleaning up, making a list of things to know ...

So my alarm went off at 2:50 am for a 3:20 Super Shuttle pickup. I fell asleep at some point before one. I think.

Got to the airport swiftly, got through security quickly, and then? The wrong airport train (to get to the terminal as) opened, a bunch of us got on, and then it turned out the doors had opened in error and we were all stuck. The only option? Get off the train, go up the escalator and back through security. Okay. Annoying, but not the end of the world. The lines were suddenly long and they decided this time around to confiscate all my kosher food. Then they insisted on me going back through security. Again.

So. Tired. Frustrated. Suddenly without my kosher goods. I cried. Everyone ignored me, too. So I complained to the TSA desk and the guy was apologetic and noted I should have had my food confiscated the first time through. Awesome.

Anyhow. There are worse things. Luckily there's instacart so I can't get groceries delivered to my hotel. And the company is getting a kosher caterer to provide me food at an event today. So. Positives. Also, Mr T sent me a pretty awesome Bob Seger song "Get Out of Denver."

I'd just like a trip through the airport with a bit of ease.

Also, there are some serious jerks on this flight. I get that it's early but the disrespect is ... Wow.

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

A Giveaway: The Tea Book

As you may or may not know, my most recent work adventures have taken me into the impressively fascinating world of loose leaf tea. Now, I'm not talking Doctor Who blends or Cotton Candy blends, but pure, authentic loose leaf tea from the world's most natural sources in historic growing regions like Taiwan. The great thing about tea, too, is that all unflavored teas are naturally kosher!

Thanks to my (amazing, wonderful, I seriously can't tell you how happy I am here) job, I've had the chance to taste a lot of tea I never would have before and my tea porn collection continues to grow, especially in the form of books. As a self-proclaimed bibliophile (I have a huge list of every book I've ever had to sell or get rid of in moves so I can repurchase them all someday), when I can rationalize a purchase because it makes sense for work, I'm a happy clam.

But the book I'm talking about today -- The Tea Book by Linda Gaylard -- is one that my awesome boss sent me. But I am so in love with it that I bought another copy to actually give away here. Why?

The tea industry in the U.S. is growing at an insane rate: $1.8 billion in 1990, $10.84 billion in 2014, and predicted to more than quadruple by 2020. But most of the tea consumed in the U.S. is black tea and it's iced. The funny thing about this is that traditionally, Americans were heavy green tea drinkers up until World War II. Then things changed and as the iced tea industry grew, American tea tastes continued to fall in that category.

Luckily, with books like The Tea Book, pure, unflavored teas are getting the attention they deserve. With five categories of leaves from the camellia sinuses plant -- black, white, oolong, yellow, green, and pu-erh -- there is an abundance of opportunities to experience tea (without sprinkles, fruit, and herbs if you don't mind me).

The great thing about this book, though, is that it takes you from the past to the present, around the world, into the teahouses, tea cultures, and tea farms so you, the reader, can really start to understand what tea is, why it's the second-most consumed beverage in the world after only water, and how it has evolved into an industry of blends, herbal teas (tisanes), and more.

Now, if you know me well enough, you know that I am, and have always been, first and foremost, a coffee drinker. The truth is that my love of coffee is still potent, but my love of tea is taking over (it's all thanks to a 2007 Aged Oolong, believe it or not). So both as an individual and as a representative of what I foresee being the most revolutionary tea company this side of the industrial revolution, I'm stoked to give away The Tea Book. 

Whether you drink tea or not, this book will blow you away. The visuals are stunning (it's a DK Book, which you might know from their amazing educational books and children's books), the history is quirky and fascinating, and it's just a beautiful conversation piece.

Ready? Enter to win by 08/20!

Saturday, August 8, 2015

Thread and Flourish Box Review!

Love scarves? Love handmade goodies? Check out the Thread and Flourish Box (and a quick look at doing a head wrap with an infinity wrap).

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Mr. T's Return: The Co-Parenting Adjustment

Father and son checking out the furniture at the DAT Academy Yard Sale.

Life is funny. Everything is funny. Joyous funny and "did that just really happen?" funny and "I can't believe this is happening" funny.

This morning, while on the way to drop Asher off to school, he managed to puke everything he had for breakfast up, while sitting casually in his carseat watching Daniel Tiger's Neighborhood in the car.   He was completely unfazed, I was in all-out panic mode (this being the fourth time he's done this in the past nine months), and Mr. T, well, he was cool, calm, and collected.

We drove back to the apartment and he took Asher, carseat and all, and strolled him up to the apartment, got him cleaned up, bathed, changed, and hydrated.

It's about 3.5 hours later and I'm still anxious. Every time Asher puked everywhere while Mr. T was gone, I had an absolute breakdown. Not only because I simply cannot handle puke (I can count the amount of times I've regurgitated in the past 20 years on one hand), but because when it was just me and the kid I felt helpless and alone. I immediately fell back into that feeling of anxiety, helplessness, and desperation that I felt all those other times he did the same while Mr. T was gone.

Tatty and Asher teamwork with the yard sale kitchen.
Despite Mr. T's reassurances that it really was okay, the two minute ride back home I was just frazzled. And, well, I still feel frazzled.

At the same time, I think back to lost work days and anxiety attacks when Mr. T wasn't around. Today, on the other hand, I was able to run to the kelim mikvah (I picked up stuff from three other peoples' homes and took a bunch of Pyrex I got on the cheap from Wal-Mart to be toveled), get the car cleaned, and now I'm sitting, working.

I even FaceTimed with Mr. T and Ash, it being the first time I've ever video chatted with my son, which was a super weird, but fun experience.

I'm trying to laugh about this morning. My body still feeling like static is running through it. The panic, the anxiety, the "what do I do now?" all the while having a partner and co-parent there ready to man the puke and do a massive, sickening load of laundry.

It's going to be okay. I just have to convince myself that I can and should accept the help. That I'm no longer single parenting a precocious toddler who has the most adorable temper tantrums you've ever seen.

Because I'm not alone anymore. My husband, the father of my beautiful boy, is home. And all of the adjustment and growing together pains are worth it. I'll get there. I promise. It's just going to take some time.

Friday, July 3, 2015