In Which I Still Do Not Quite Meet Paul Rudd

I have had a crush on Paul Rudd for twenty years now (ever since Clueless). It intensified when I moved to Kansas City; he's from there and is apparently very cool and down to earth when he goes back home to visit. He usually goes to a bar where my friend works and the whole staff loves him. I probably could have met him there, except that whenever he went back to KC I was back in NJ visiting my family.

On Thursday, I got slightly closer to him when he hosted a screening of Ant-Man that we got to go to in NYC. He totally lived up to my crush expectations (ie he's just handsome in person and he was funny and charming).

Sadly, the intro was brief and the movie started soon after.

My boys are way more into superheros and comics than I am, but thanks to my aforementioned crush, I'd say we were all equally excited to see the movie.

Lovebug, at 9, was riveted during the entire movie. He didn't even finish his popcorn, which I don't think has ever happened before. The (imaginary) science and the action scenes were perfect for Lovebug. Plus, there were a lot of jokes - even within the action scenes. The action scenes and the humor within them got 6 year old Hugmonkey to pay attention. He's usually not very into movies - he lost interest during the final fight scenes of  The Karate Kid recently - but he was pretty good during Ant-Man. I found the movie family-friendly, as far as plot, language and violence level go. A lot of times, especially with live action family friendly movies, I find that I get bored. I didn't with Ant-Man and neither did Hot Guy.

My only issue (well, besides the fact that there could have been a few more shirtless Paul Rudd scenes) with the movie was that the only people of color in the movie (excluding a cameo by Falcon) were criminals. They were funny and basically harmless criminals, but criminals nonetheless. Which I wouldn't necessarily have a problem with, if there'd been even one other named character of color who wasn't a criminal. Even on Orange Is the New Black there are portrayals of people of color who AREN'T criminals. But this is a greater Hollywood problem, and while I wish Ant-Man had broken the mold, I'm not going to dismiss the movie because of it.

Our whole family loved the sense of humor in the movie and the way it linked to other movies in the Marvel franchise. I freely admit that I didn't get a lot of the references, but Hot Guy and the boys did and they were very excited about them. The action sequences and special effects were incredible. Paul Rudd was awesome (that's a totally unbiased assessment, by the way). We had an excellent time and I think you will too.


Going To England

Writing this post makes me sympathetic to that guy who didn't call me after we went on a couple of fabulous dates, then was hurt I wasn't friendly when I ran into him.

I guess what I'm trying to say is that I'm sorry I haven't called  written in way too long.

I was busy. And confused about what direction I wanted to take the blog. But I never stopped thinking about you blogging. I have a dozen unfinished posts in my drafts poster as proof. I even have a handwritten draft that I wrote for Hot Guy's 40th birthday. In April.

Thinking that with some minor tweaking I can have it ready for our anniversary next week. 

Because even though not-blogging made my life a little less hectic and made me a little less stressed out, I've been unhappy without it.

Note to people who don't know who this is: This is Lloyd Dobler from 
the movie "Say Anything". Which is a classic you should
see right away. In this scene, he is trying to get his girl back.

In all the times I imagined living out the boom box scene of "Say Anything", I never thought I would be Lloyd. And yet, here I am, trying to regain the attention of my blogging muse and my readers. Though I also sort of feel like Diane, trapped crying in my bedroom while blogging stands out in my yard and let's me know it hasn't gone anywhere.

I think not-blogging has not been good for my mental health, because I have spent the last 10 minutes trying to identify whether I feel more like Lloyd or Diane. Obviously it doesn't matter, because they both wind up (spoiler alert) going to England together in the end.

Which means I too need to go to England, if going to England means blogging again. Which it does.


Happy 9th Birthday, Lovebug!

Dear Lovebug,

      I haven't blogged in a long while, but you've inspired me. You are such a great kid; though with all the maturing you've done this year it seems more appropriate to call you a young man. You are so responsible and helpful.

Though you do still love Legos. I love how you build things according to the directions, then let them morph into new objects. You've started to teach your brother your Lego building tricks and I love listening to the two of you build and play together. You also still love to draw comics; I love how you write little stories in each birthday card you make.

Your newest passion is electronics. You've gone from building snap circuits to attempting actual circuits and I'm pretty sure you understand Ohm's Law better than I do. I can't wait to see what you do next.

This year you started karate and were chosen as the first student of the month at your karate school. Your focus and strength in class have impressed everyone around you and put you in the leadership program very quickly. I love watching you in class.

You still love basketball and I think that's where I've seen you grow most of all. Last year it was hard for you to handle disappointments during games, let alone getting bumped and bruised. This year your rec team had to face a travel team that played VERY aggressively and not only did you handle some serious bruising without a tear, you had a positive attitude the entire time.

You have such a mature sense of humor. It may be a little too mature, but you can really make me laugh. And if all that wasn't enough to make you "Captain Awesome" (your video game name these days), there's also the way you excel in school and are so good to your siblings.

I am so lucky and proud to be your mom,


Evolution 2015

I always write a New Year's post. Always being a relative term - I only checked for the last two years. So I know I wrote a New Year's post in 2012 and another in 2013

I stopped checking for older New Year's posts because I knew they wouldn't be as good as those two. 

I really like those two posts. 

(It feels weird typing that. Not sure if the weirdness is from how rarely I like what I've written or from how rarely I admit it.)

Anyway, I'm still a big fan of small, actionable steps instead of huge goals. Also, the older I get, the more I feel the need to cherish the moment and to find the joy in each day. 

For many years, "love myself more" was one of my New Year's resolutions. But it never occurred to me to have "love my friends/parents/spouse/kids" as a New Year's resolution. It's not that I've ever been a perfect friend, child, wife or mom, either. It's that I knew my imperfections with my loved ones weren't because I didn't love them enough, but because I needed better strategies to cope with stress or I needed to be more expressive or whatever. 

And I've finally realized that the same thing is true with myself. I do love myself. I just don't know how to do it in the best way. I haven't paid attention; I use the same strategies I used 15 years ago. Except they're not making me feel better anymore. 

 Evolution is my word for 2015. 

I always wind up screwing up resolutions anyway. Even last year's, which were designed to be attainable. I didn't take my writing more seriously, I didn't teach the kids how to make me the perfect gin and tonic and I didn't even cut my damn hair. 

But mainly, because my relationship with myself needs to evolve. Sure, I love myself. Sure, I try to practice self-care when I'm stressed out. My problem is that my self-care strategies are habits, not joys. 

Also, to be honest, my relationship with blogging and writing needs to evolve too. As does my relationship with exercise, because it can't just be about reading on the elliptical anymore. 

I'm not going to write all of my small, actionable steps here (aren't you relieved?) but I do promise to check back in with my progress. At least on December 31st, 2015. 

So, do you have a word for 2015? Or some resolutions? Or do you skip over this aspect of the holiday?