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Archive for the tag “party”

The Faulty Side Of Loyalty

I wrote this blog last week and planned on finishing it before something happened.  It directly correlates to this thus I am going to preface my blog on what happened.

On Wednesday I was attacked by a dog.  I was working, my dogs kept barking and I looked outside to see a large dog running up the street. Many of my neighbors are elderly so I went outside to help.  The dog saw me and began running toward me.  I was elated at first. But then I noticed something different.  He wasn’t a pup and was not coming to play.  He quickly went for my left leg and luckily bit my pants.  He then lunged and bit my right leg.  I kicked him in the jaw. He was not fazed. He continued to lunge while I kept eye contact, yelled NO and kicked while taking small steps backward.  I got to the front door of my house by the time the owner and neighbor arrived to leash him.  The owner apologized profusely. The other neighbor helping her got angry and told her, “This is the third time your dog has bitten someone. This dog needs a new home.” The dog’s owner dismissed him because she is loyal to a fault.

Back to the original blog:

I have been thinking about the idea of loyalty for the past few months.  Loyalty is an attribute everyone identifies with.  Have you ever met a person stating otherwise? Loyalty is tossed around like most adjectives- Also fun, friendly, outgoing and of course kind.

Loyalty can apply to myriad situations.  It could be in friendships or relationships. It could be family, pets, job, or a political party.  People really like touting themselves as loyal.

The reason I have been thinking so much of this lately is quietly watching others display their loyalty in various areas while not tending to others.

My Dad always spoke about being loyal to a fault.  Over the years I admired this quality and followed suit.  As an adult I found that loyal to a fault is flawed.

When we say we are loyal humans at what point are we not?  Is it when beliefs do not coincide? What happens when friends don’t want the best for us? How long do you stay when your partner continually mistreats you?  Or support a family member making poor choices? Do you stay loyal to a job or person that doesn’t value or celebrate you?  What about the animal you love that continually acts out?  Most recently, what do you do when your political party leaves you unsatisfied?

Do you stay? Do you remain loyal to a fault?

My thoughts are what loyalty really means to you.  Everyone is quick to hold on to the word and describe themselves as such.  But what if being loyal to a fault isn’t the best option?

Mike and I have had time off this past month and we have talked at length about the same questions.  Loyalty is something to be cherished in the right circumstances.  However when does a person decide, “I am not loyal to dysfunction?”

More than anything I am interested in your insight.  What makes you loyal?  When do you decide to NOT be loyal?

Best,

Marianne

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The Evolution of Friendship

In 5th grade our teacher tasked us with an in class assignment.  Whom do you admire and why?

My first thought was my Mom.  She was and still is the best mom and friend a girl could ask for.  However instead of writing an essay about my mom I looked to the girl seated next to me and asked who she was writing about.

“Madonna! Of course!” stated the popular girl wearing head to toe Esprit, oversized plastic hoops, and three layers of color coordinating socks.

Instantly I was insecure about my choice.  Perhaps Mom was the wrong role model.

I replied, “Oh cool, I’m writing about Cindi Lauper.”   Esprit girl nodded in approval and smiled at me.

The problem was I didn’t know anything about Cindi Lauper.  I knew “Girls Just Wanna Have Fun” and I had definitely belted out an impressive version of “Time after Time” in the shower on numerous occasions.  The front of my cassette tape indicated Cindi liked crazy hair and lots of bracelets.  She wore neon colors and her MTV videos were cool.  Other than that I knew NOTHING.

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Luckily I have always had a ferocious imagination and managed to write an entire essay expressing my devotion to a complete stranger.  I received an A.  I still remember the sick feeling in my stomach when my Mom saw the title of the essay and then the reaction of my subject.

5th grade is my first memory of choosing friends over family.

Looking back I can remember disappointing my parents with my consistent worship of school girls.  I would fight to spend time with them, sneak out at night, and put virtually all loyalty aside to be accepted.  I consistently made poor choices and changed who I was to be accepted and part of a group.

Fast forward to my early 20’s and I began flourishing at making girlfriends.  We had a BLAST.  I had lots of best friends and I loved them dearly.  I picked them for holiday getaways, nightly phone calls, and even developed an official (almost famous) group people called a Blonde Coven.   Luckily I could always dump my pesky responsibilities on my parents so I could devote more time to “my girls”.

By my mid-twenties I thought of myself as the life of the party circuit.  I had scored an amazing job working for Budweiser and they paid me to make friends and buy cocktails.  My expense allotment had no ceiling.  I could spend 10,000 dollars in one evening and would be given a pat on the back for doing a great job.  Can you imagine how many friends I made with an unlimited bar budget?  People followed me everywhere.  I always had tons of girlfriends wanting to hang out with me and everyone was so accommodating!

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During the peak of my social career I stumbled. Literally.  I was dressed as Rainbow Brite for Halloween and had found fabulous stripper height rainbow shoes.  With my entourage behind me I managed to crack the heel and fall face first into the gutter.  Luckily my “friends” picked me up and graciously offered to carry me to the cash only venue boasting the best Halloween Party of the year.  I felt so lucky to have such amazing people supporting me.   It never occurred to me the 5,000 dollars in my purse and pre-paid VIP area could have been the motivator.

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The next day my ankle was blue and I could barely walk.  I grudgingly went to the doctor who immediately told me it was broken.  I was given a cast and strict orders: Stay off your ankle for 8 weeks.

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After one week of replying to texts and phone calls with, “I broke my ankle and can’t go out” my phone fell silent.  Really silent.  Some days it never rang or pinged an incoming text.  Most of my friends disappeared.  My own roommate (who loved the perks of my job) became annoyed with me and started leaving things in the way so I couldn’t get down the stairs or in the kitchen.  It was horrible but enlightening.  I didn’t get angry with the people who left me.  I have never been good with grudges and my anger dissolves quickly.  However I did learn the lesson of true friendship.

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Shortly after my realization I met Mike.  He became my best friend and the center of my universe.  I left my job and moved on to a better position albeit less money to spend in bars.  The pseudo friends I had disappeared into the beach bar scene and probably attached themselves to the next alcohol funded wallet.  When Mike and I married my mother was my Maid of Honor.  Two of my three bridesmaids were from my childhood.   Our wedding was small, only 49 guests.  I had learned my lesson and although I had groups of friends I knew how fleeting it could be.

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I became a bit more cautious with making friends.   I had girlfriends but began focusing my energy on starting a family and spending time with my core group.

Over the past eight years my social circle has been quietly rebuilding.  I have a few small circles of friends encompassing every facet of my life.   It isn’t flashy.  I don’t talk to most of my friends daily. Some I speak with weekly-some even monthly and everyone seems fine with this.   I used to pride myself on being the leader or social chair of all of my girlfriend groups.  Now I am thrilled if someone can squeeze in a coffee date.  Priorities change.

Last Sunday I wasn’t feeling well.  I didn’t sleep most of the night and knew something was wrong but couldn’t decide if it was the flu or just a bad case of cramping.  It continued through Monday and at my mom’s urging (It might be Endometriosis! It runs in the family!) I made a doctor’s appointment for Tuesday morning.  My doctor took one look and said my abdomen was swollen and I needed to go to ER.  I thought she was crazy and drove home first.  After all I had the girls’ car seats, needed my work laptop, and should probably pack a lunch.  By the time I got to ER I was annoyed and embarrassed.  After all who shows up to ER with their laptop, a packed lunch, and Starbucks?  Granted I didn’t feel like eating or drinking but I certainly wasn’t on my death bed! After hours of waiting I was ushered into a room, given a CAT scan and told my appendix needed to come out.  Immediately.  I was in shock.  Mike was home with the girls and we both assumed I would be coming home.  I was hooked up to an IV and a few hours later was wheeled into surgery.

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Aside from Mike and my parents only two people knew.  My lovely Hannah (who is almost 9 months pregnant) and my bestie Molly who I had been chatting with earlier in the day.  Hannah wanted to come to the hospital and kept texting me.  Molly wanted to pick up my children.  I kept telling them no and they bugged me all night.  I didn’t need their help but their insistence tickled me.  I kept imagining my hugely pregnant Hannah pacing away in ER grossed out by all the nasty sick people and demanding to know what was going on.  Meanwhile Molly and her husband Scott would be wrangling our children in their fabulous penthouse apartment.  My kids would definitely be negotiating ice cream and all night snuggles with them and their doodle Sandy.

After the surgery I recouped and then Mike brought me home.  My friends heard the news either through me or a mutual friend.  My phone began ringing and my text message pinging.  Friends called to check in but also asking if they could take our girls on play dates.  Friends offered to drive them to school.  Friends wanted to know what they could do!  Dinner gift cards arrived.  Flowers.  Desserts.  I was loving the post-surgery weight loss but luckily my friends felt I needed to fatten up by sending sugar cookies, brownies, chocolate chip cookies, etc.  My FRIENDS are still checking in to see what they can do.  My group of friends range from single mid-twenties bikini models to experienced mothers of 5.  Everyone has contacted me to see what they can do.  Over the past year I have made friends with a few phenomenal women in our neighborhood.  These women immediately jumped in to help with my children and offer their support.

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What a difference.

I have never felt more blessed than the circle of people I know now.  The friends I have made over the past few years have encouraged me.  My best girlfriend Eva had always been suspicious of new girlfriends. Looking back she was probably right.  She never liked a large group and told me not to trust others.  I didn’t listen and was often burned.   She still loves me and sent me cookies thank goodness 😉 Lately she has found a group of girlfriends who cherish her.  We don’t live near one another so our journey is an individual experience.

Adult Friendships are AWESOME!!!

Holy moly this is what all knowing adults talked about!   I have friends who want to hang out with me without alcohol or my expense account.  I have friends who offer to help with my children, my health, and my mind.   For the first time I have friends who help me more than I help them!  To be honest I don’t know what to do.  I am not accustomed to people giving without any type of expectation of reciprocation.

For those of my friends who read my blog, thank you for everything you do.  I feel so blessed to have a support system in my life and know I am beyond lucky.

While writing this our two year old has been organizing plastic cups.  Every few moments she says, “LOOK MOMMA” seeking my approval.  It is adorable and I cherish the short amount of time we have while our girls care most about our opinion not their peers.   My hope is we can try to impress the importance of family and character on them during the impressionable years.   I know people will hurt them and it tears me up to know it is inevitable.  However I am filled with happiness knowing if they put forth their best there will be a day real friends will be there.

Happy Friday!  xo Mari

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OMG. Did I just say that??

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Juggling my life has been a bit hectic and my blog has been ignored.  I apologize for the lack of posts but hope the admission of the demise of my youth is enjoyable enough to make up for it.  I’m not sure when I first noticed something was off but a few months ago I started noticing a change.   A shudder worthy change.  Clearly it was coming from my mouth but I couldn’t place why it was so abhorrent.  Last week, it came to me.  I am sounding more and more like…..wait for it…. MY PARENTS.  Or someone else’s parents.  Basically, an old person.  I was so taken aback I spent a week trying to dissuade myself from believing so.  It was of no use.  My struggle is real, friends, and I am mortified.  Once I realized who I sounded like I began noticing statements I made and jotted them down.  Here are a few gems from just the past two weeks.

You are done? Did you know people are starving in Africa?

OK, this was horrible 20 years ago… who says it now?? It slipped out of my mouth when my toddler refused to finish her food

What time does the concert start? 8pm? Ugh, sorry too late for me!

Remember when 8pm was early? In my world 8pm is unwind and take a shower before Law and Order is on.

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OMG Babe guess what I saw today? A grape slicer!

Who needs a grape slicer? Apparently me. Best part, in true parent fashion is when I explained to Mike it was rip off at Target so I would Google it to find a better deal.

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If you eat anymore mac n cheese you will turn into a noodle.

Kraft Mac n Cheese used to be a staple and something I ate for multiple meals- sub in tuna for guests, hot dogs for low budget months etc.

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How did I live without a coconut opener? The coconut water is so much better freshly opened!

I have a coconut opener. Enough said.

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I’m so excited, for Halloween this year we are organizing a kids group in the neighborhood

Kids exist on Halloween? I thought it was just for a great night out!

Do you have the non slutty Elsa? I don’t want slutty ice queen, just the Disney adult Queen Elsa

I need a non slutty costume? When did slutty become inappropriate in my world??

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Please stop standing in front of the refrigerator with the door open

What is it about kids standing in front of the refrigerator? More important why have I always done it and it is now bothersome?

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You don’t have Amazon Prime? OMG it is a life saver!

Amazon Prime is an actually life saver? Vodka is supposed to be a life saver

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I’ll just have an iced tea.  Sorry guys, I have a ton of work to do today.

When did I quit drinking at lunch work meetings??

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If you will be quiet for just a few minutes Mommy will get you a special surprise

Before kids I thought parents who bribed their kids or dumped them in front of TV were horrible. I do both. Daily.

Babe I can’t do another party.  We have had way too many parties this month and I am done.

Above all I thought there was no such thing as too many parties

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It’s Charlynne’s Birthday! Let’s do a kid friendly dinner at 5pm on Sunday!          

Charlynne’s bday has always been a week long booze fest

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Can we focus on more ab workouts? My glutes and arms are on fire!

Glutes? Abs? Arms? Workout? I actually requested more ab work to my Pilates instructor

I want to increase our vegetable intake. I found some great recipes to add spinach to our diet

  • This does not include French fries… eeck

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OMG I can’t believe I have said any of these, let alone all of them in the past two weeks! What is happening???  Is anyone else suffering from the horrible realization they are getting more concerned with health and finances and overall old people stuff???

I Know Too Much

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I know your wedding anniversary was last week and the lasagna you ordered was phenomenal.  Your child has pink eye, a stutter and likes purple.  Your husband has horrific gas in the middle of the night and often it keeps you up at night.  The neighbors on your left are loud and annoying and the smoke from their partying comes into your window. You have lost 6 pounds on your new weight loss program and typically work out at 6:30am before work.  Your youngest child has the flu and the vomit is horrible.  You and your best friend are fighting over the girl’s night out last Tuesday.  Your job sucks and you were late last week because of traffic.

You are my Facebook friend and I don’t have your phone number.  We don’t hang out; in fact, we met in passing.  When you are down the street from my house and check in at a local bar you don’t realize how close you are.  Even if you did I wouldn’t be invited.  After all, we don’t know one another and I don’t want to be real friends with you.

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I have almost 500 “friends” on Facebook and have relationships with possibly 75.  I check Facebook throughout the day and peek into people’s lives knowing details about their family, their day-to-day activities and their life.  I know their religion, their political affiliation and their music tastes.  Many of these people I haven’t spoken to for more than 5 minutes in my entire life.

For the few real friends I have my feelings get hurt when I see a post and realize I wasn’t invited.  I can tell when someone is annoyed with me because they don’t like my picture or comment on a post they would normally comment on. I worry I might make someone feel excluded when I update a picture or event and may have forgotten to invite a friend.    Before Facebook I wouldn’t know when a few friends had an impromptu get together or quick coffee date.  I would be oblivious to a friend’s mild annoyance with me.

I have been thinking a lot about Facebook and the impact it has on my days.  More important, I worry about the time I set aside to read update after update from people I barely know.

Having aged from a young single girl to a mother the updates are equally annoying.  The constant competition of other parent’s boasting their child’s advanced skills or perfect post baby body will leave any person insecure.  On the flip side I receive notes from people commenting on the person without the perfect body or phenomenal child.

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Then there is my favorite area.  Friends I might not be real friends with any longer but don’t want to unfriend on Facebook.  After all it would be childish, right?   I read posts of them boasting their best night ever with their newest friends or vacationing down the street.  According to Facebook their lives (or ours) is much better now and the passive aggressive dance ensues.

What is happening? Why has social media become the dominant presence in our lives? I have always defended my Facebook membership as a tool to keep in touch with family and friends who live far away.  However, I spend much more time reading updates about people I don’t interact with!  Why do we care so much about reading what people are doing? I find myself delighting in the mortifying admissions and the horrific posts people write.  I hear my disappointment because a friend forgot to invite me or another friend is annoyed because I missed an outing. This is not who I am and I am quickly realizing I have no interest in knowing so much.  Facebook creates insecurity in my friendships and encourages me to post nothing but what I want people to perceive is my life.

I am not done with Facebook. Yet.  However downsizing is part of my phase out program.  I don’t want to lose the years of previous posts because I think it will be fun to include in my kiddos scrapbooks.  Also our blog reaches all of my contacts.  But I am tired of too much information.  I am bored of worrying how I look in each picture to prove I am still a hot mom (thanks Photoshop).

For my real friends please just let me know when you are upset with me or just love me.  Please begin sending photos to my email address because I cherish them.  Remember I might not be available but invite me! Mostly, think about what you post on Facebook.  Know people are reading and might be hurt, offended or excluded.

What do you think? What is your social media pet peeve? I would love to hear your comments while I check Facebook 😉

Xo Mari

 

I’m just trying to be cool

MGMT by JennPellyWhen I was in grade school I constantly got into trouble for talking during class.  I can’t remember the amount of notes confiscated throughout my adolescence.  My brother asked for a TV for his room.  I asked for my own phone line.  I was on my phone every moment I wasn’t in school.

I was and am an extrovert.  And I really want you to like me.

Spending time interacting with a friend refreshes and rejuvenates me.  After a coffee or wine date with one of my best friends I feel relieved and confident.

I am also insanely nervous of social situations and need a pep talk, either from myself, my mom or my husband prior to almost every event I plan.

Surprised?

My closest friends know I have anxiety about everything.  Someday I might have the courage to write about it.  Not today. Today is reserved for the plight of the extrovert.

As an extrovert, I am expected to be fun. To be outgoing and charming and to facilitate a good time.  I am very good at this. However, I am so fearful of not doing well I anticipate to the point of panic.

For some reason, extroverts are viewed as confident and immune to disappointment.  I deal with both regularly.  Introverts are commonly viewed as “deep and pensive”,  lovingly labeled as troubled or sensitive.  Introverts are applauded for having feelings while extroverts are encouraged to be shallow social butterfly’s without a care in the world.

I think many people are confused as to how an extrovert gets their strength.

A true extrovert is happiest when they are communicating well with another human being.  This human being is typically a close friend or family member.  I am most at ease when I am talking to Mike or listening to my toddler tell me about her day.  My strength does NOT come from a big party or a night out with 15 friends.  Am I good at planning it? Absolutely. However, it is the opposite of rejuvenating because I am worried about the outcome and am hyper sensitive to everyone around me.

Extroverts get their feelings hurt too.  Extroverts use “I’m so busy” and “My week is crazy” on a weekly basis. It is true, and makes us feel important. We are busy making plans, organizing get togethers and worrying about details.  Extroverts also know both quotes are bull shit when used as an excuse.  Regardless of how busy I am, I can and will always make time for important people.  Extroverts know this and when others constantly talk about their stressful schedule and lack of availability it is deeply hurtful.  Extroverts take these excuses as you letting them know they are not important enough.

Extroverts worry about others opinions constantly.  Much of my self-worth is derived from being viewed as capable.  I work tirelessly to be a mother, friend and wife, while excelling at my career and remembering birthdays.  I wake up at night, fearful I have forgotten a detail.  I obsess that one of my friends may not be happy with me or Mike isn’t fulfilled.

Extroverts are just as scared as introverts.  Doing well socially does not mean it comes easy.  Many days I don’t want to show up.  Often, I want to stay under the covers and call my best friend and talk through it.  The pressure to “perform well” makes me anxious and drains me.  When you are viewed as an extrovert certain qualities are expected and if they are not achieved people are disappointed.  If I’m not smiling, others worry something is wrong. If I am not boisterous people are concerned I am sick.  It is exhausting and makes me nervous.

This past week I managed to get through one of my crazier work weeks. I also had a slumber party with one of my best friends, a wine afternoon with my favorite group of friends and spent quality time with my family.  I organized my out-of-town friends schedule and coordinated events for St. Patrick’s Day.  Everything turned out fabulous but I was anxious the whole time.  I just wanted everything to go well, for my friends to like me and my family to be happy.  There were some disappointments this weekend and my heart hurt. Luckily, I have my introvert husband to listen to me.

Have you hugged your extrovert today?

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