Category Archives: The Monday’s

The Monday Blahs

Today is such a Monday.

I’m not one of those people who chronically has a case of The Mondays. Sometimes my Mondays are light and airy and the perfect start to a new week, or rich and beautiful like a well-appointed Thursday where all my cylinders are pumping at full speed, and occasionally they are quiet and peaceful, like a second Sunday. But I’d say half my Mondays are THE Mondays.

The Monday Blahs, or just The Mondays, as they are more commonly known, take on two flavors. They are either sluggish and frustrating, something akin to a Saturday that you accidentally spent all on the couch and now you have one of those weird headaches you get from sitting too long, or they fly in your face like a bat from hell you were not expecting. Either way, nothing goes the way you wanted it to.

Today has been more like the first type. I had problems getting out of bed, and then I feel back asleep eating breakfast. My tub is so clogged it fills to overflowing within the space of one regular length shower, and the repair guy still has not come. I realized that somehow every one of my nails, freshly painted last night, with the exception of one tiny pinky fingernail, is already hopelessly messed up. I wrote all morning, and was going along at a decent clip, when the cat walked over my keyboard and deleted the whole thing. My kitchen still needs cleaning from a lazy weekend full of brunches and having friends over. One of my favorite plants is dying and I don’t know why. I need to go grocery shopping desperately, but payday isn’y until tomorrow. I lack motivation to do anything but read, but I can’t decide what I even want to read.

This is just not my day.

I was on the verge of working myself up into a teenage girl-worthy pity party, when that little voice in the back of my head whispered to me, and suddenly I was alright. Because, you know what? It’s all okay. (The view from my seat as I write this blog. I won’t show you the kitchen part of my view though, it really is atrocious.)

I work from home so a nap didn’t hurt anything, and now I feel much better. It’s okay. My tub is clogged, but I live in a country where clean, safe, running water is the norm. I live in an apartment building where repairs are free. It’s okay. In the grand scheme of things, painted nails don’t matter even a little bit. And I can always re-do them. It’s okay. God gave me a really creative mind, I can re-write whatever I lost, and it’ll probably be better the second time around. Shoot, I get to write for my job, just like I always dreamed. It’s okay. Every living thing, plant, human, animal, is a gift. I may not be able to save my little hanging basket of beauty, but it brought joy while it lasted. It’s okay. I have a small kitchen, it’ll only take ten minutes to clean. Plus, I’ll never regret those lazy brunches or Friday nights spent with friends. It’s okay. I may not have as much food as I’d like in my fridge right now, or the food I ideally want, but I’m not going to go hungry. In fact, I’ve never gone hungry in my whole life. I’m more than okay, I’m richly blessed.

God causes the rain to fall on the just and the unjust, on the Mondays, but also on the Tuesdays and the Fridays and all the other days as well.  Even on my rainiest of Mondays, I have so much to be thankful for. So I’m going to go make myself a sandwich, even though a plain old turkey sandwich isn’t what I really want (Mmmmm…sushi!), and I’m going to text my husband and my mom, and probably my dad and brother too, and tell them how much I love them, because I’m lucky to have so much love in my life (I’ll probably cuddle my Cambria kitty, and give her a little piece of turkey, because I love her too.), and I’m going to turn on some Ella Fitzgerald and dance around my kitchen as I clean it. And while I do all this, I’m going to soak myself in the knowledge that no matter what I lack, no matter what goes wrong today, I am blessed beyond measure.

Have a great Monday, friends!



Filed under Cambria, The Monday's, Things I'm Thankful For

I Was Right About The Monday’s! Also, I Want Mindy Kaling To Be My BFF.

I knew I was right about how difficult it is to write a grocery list let alone a real blog post or anything else other than nonsense syllables that sound like a Jazz singer’s improvised scatting on a Monday. Dup an dab bam boni schuop doop dop a de boo da ne do ba. (<< I worked all morning, and this is all I have to show for it. I was trying to update my resume, but whatever.) I’ve been reading Anne Lamott’s book about writing, Bird by Bird, and she feels strongly enough about Monday’s (and the month of December as well) to put it in the introduction.

“Monday’s are not good writing days. One has had all that freedom over the weekend, all that authenticity, all those dreamy dreams, and then your angry mute Slavic Uncle Monday arrives, and it is time to sit down at your desk. So I would simply recommend to the people in my workshops that they never start a large writing project on any Monday (in December). Why set yourself up for failure?”

I knew it! Even the genius that is Anne Lamott knows Monday’s are no good. I’m not sure why the angry mute uncle must be Slavic, but it doesn’t matter. What matters is that she agrees with me. I win, Monday! You are officially the worst writing day ever! Bwahahahaha!

Achem. Moving on.

It’s apparently the year for funny ladies to write funny books: Tina Fey, Betty White, and now Mindy Kaling, writer and actor on The Office. My cup overfloweth with joy! I have laughed so hard I almost peed a little bit while reading three times now. All years should be this full of funny books. Now if Amy Poehler would write a book too my joy would be complete. (Amy, if you read this, I’m begging! I promise to buy at least five copies if you do! I’m sorry I can’t do more, I would offer to pay you to write it or something, but I’m only a middle-class blogger, not one of those fancy blogs with ads and contests and glitter and stuff.)

I read Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? (And Other Concerns) in less than 24 hours, but I think that’s because it’s easy reading and not because I’m a speed reading genius. Actually, it’s probably because I was laughing hysterically and I couldn’t stop myself. To fully express my love and admiration, I have made a pliest. (Pliest is a word Mindy made up to mean “a piece with a list-y quality to it.”)

  1. She makes up words.
  2. She’s an obsessive list maker. (Me too, Mindy! I have lists of favorite baby names dating back 15 years! In middle school I had a list journal! I probably shouldn’t tell strangers this weird stuff about myself!)
  3. She also has a great vocabulary, full of smart-people words, like behoove. My mom used to use that word all the time. She’d say things like. “It would behoove you to clean your room, otherwise I will behoove your back side.”
  4. She’s really funny (obviously), and she’s come to terms with being a short girl who will never be a size two, which makes her either my twin or my hero. Or maybe both. (See what I did there? I can’t decide if I think I’m cute or vain and self-absorbed.)
  5. She’s observant too: the women characters on romantic comedies would not be viable in real life, and Liz Lemon crying out of her mouth on 30Rock really is one of the best comedic moments ever.
  6. Also, she has good ideas. I would totally watch a movie called Bananagrams 3D.
  7. Plus, we have a bunch of stuff in common. I cry about stuff that normal people would not cry about, I hate comedy roasts too, and I also made my friends watch Monty Python’s Flying Circus in high school.
  8. Gah! I can’t stand it anymore! Mindy, please be my best friend!!! I meet all your best friend criteria. And we both make lists and love shopping. We could be Mindy and Mandy. It could be a match made in heaven.

So in conclusion, Mindy’s books is super funny. If you liked Bossypants or are a fan of The Office, you will probably love it. And Mindy, if you ever read this, call me!



Filed under Book Reviews, Books, The Monday's

Stories From Inside A Whale, French Food, and Other Micsellanious Updates

Just a quick update, since I neglected you so unjustly this weekend.

The fair on Saturday went really well. Thanks to everyone who prayed! We shared Jesus through story with fifty or so kids, and several prayed to receive Christ! It was such a sweet experience. I’ve never really thought of Jonah and the Whale as an evangelical story before, and I was really impressed with how they pulled it off. And, of course, the kids were a ton of fun, as kids are prone to be.

We told our stories inside this air conditioned plaster Whale, because we told the story of Jonah and the Whale, duh. Some of the comments we got from the kids were:

  • “If the whale was air-conditioned, why was Jonah complaining?”- Jocelyn, fives years old
  • “Is this a real whale? Did they catch it and stuff it like my dad does deer?” – Emily, six years old
  • And my favorite, “Whales have nothing to do with Jesus. Jesus would not have been swallowed, he would have ridden the whale like a surfboard.”- David, seven-ish years old

Clever, those kids. Also, one of the kids called me a heathen because I’m not Catholic, and stormed out. All in a days work.

After my story shift ended, Emily and I wandered the fair for several hours. We basically watched the pregnant cow exhibit and ate a ridiculous amount of fair food, which included gelato, some heavenly cheese fries, and a huge plate of ribs and corn on the cob. In order to properly enjoy our ribs, we hid at a dark picnic table and unleashed our inner-man. Seriously, we scarfed these babies messily and without shame. Or at least a minimal amount of shame, which we chose to ignore.

No shame!

More recently, we just got back last night from an overnight trip to San Diego. It was our first time there, and we loved it! We stayed in a suite at the Andaz Hotel in the Gaslamp Quarter, which was pretty legit.

The Living Room

Big, Comfy Bed. You can't see it, but there's another flat screen TV in front of the bed.

We had dinner Sunday night at the Cafe Chloe, a little French Cafe in downtown San Diego. It was incredible! I had some superb French onion soup, mussels in a cream sauce, and a fabulous pistachio bread pudding. It was all wonderful, but what was brilliant about my main course was the unusual choice to put shoestring french fries in with the mussels, which I nicknamed Americana Chic in my head. They soaked up the sauce and were waaaay too delicious for words. I am drooling just thinking about it. I wanted to take a picture, but we were with a few people I’d never met before, and Tyler made me promise not to do anything embarrassing. I figured taking pictures of each course as they came would not be considered normal, so I abstained. (This is also why I only named the seafood-and-french-fry dish in my head and not out loud.)

*Sigh* Now that I got my hopes up only to have them dashed, you know this legendary sushi is all I want to eat.

We spent Monday driving around, through Balboa Park and around Coronado Island, and being generally touristy. Our friend Kristen used to live in San Diego, and she really talked up Sushi Deli. Unfortunately, they closed fifteen minutes before we got there. My sushi-loving self we rather sad, but oh well. It gives me an excuse to go back!

And now it’s back to the daily grind. This week is going to be busy. I’m working my usual schedule, and building one of my larger sets ever…in five days. Am I crazy, you ask? It’s looking like that is the case.

Also, I would be remiss if I failed to mention that today is the Birthday of not one but two of my lovely sister-in-laws! Happy Birthday to Charity…

Charity is the beautiful one looking at the camera, in case you were wondering. 🙂

and to Allyson…

Sorry for stealing these pictures from your Facebook, Allyson!

We love you two an awful lot! And in typical Stroud fashion, your gifts will be late. But I bought them early, so that must count for something! Have a wonderful day, mes soeurs!

And have a wonderful day everyone else, too! I know I will. Especially because I got to skip Monday for this work week. No case of The Monday’s for me! Woo hoo!

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Filed under California Dreamin', Odds and Ends, The Monday's, Travels

Socially Awkward Monday

This is a little story about how socially awkward I am. On a scale of one to Ugly Betty, I range somewhere around one of the nerds from the Big Bang Theory, only substitute books for science and add in a simblance of fashion sense. (Congratulations to Jim Parsons on his Emmy win, by the way!) If you knew me in high school or college or ever, you probably remember me accidentally sticking my foot in my mouth about twice a day, and my knack for sharing things I probably should have kept to myself (Like how I recently told a friend-of-a-friend that I had been to her house before [with said mutual friend] the very first time I met her. Creepy!). Also worthy of mention are my old favorite dress that had a large printed fish pattern on it, the time I cried in the middle of class over a book I had spilt red kool aid on, or how I sometimes only put eyeliner on one eye by accident. The list continues.

See? Proof of my awkwardness. I took the time to stage this, take multiple shots to get it just right, and then post it to Facebook, and now my blog. I've still forgotten to be embarrassed by it, although I am aware that I probably should be. Sorry, Tyler!

Also, nothing is more awkward that Monday. Mondays aren’t bad for me in the typical sense. I don’t get grumpy or mad at the world because I once again have to interact with it, but it does take me about a day to recalibrate back to being in public. During that day, I usually do things like forget that I’m not wearing my weekend yoga pants and thus forget to sit like a lady, or actually forget to change out of my weekend yoga pants and look like a total slob. At work. Ooops.

Also, it should be noted that all this does affect my sweet, patient, normal-ish husband. He blushes on my behalf with frequency. (I say -ish because he has some oddities too, but he hides them better.) He’s probably blushing now, shaking his head and thinking, “Why on earth would you post this publicly, Amanda? Why?” To which I would just reply with a sheepish grin because I don’t have a good answer to his bemused queries.

So, with all this in mind, I respectfully submit this antidote to you for your reading pleasure:

This morning, I got to work a little early and I realized that I had not yet eaten. (I forget to eat sometimes. I’m not sure why, after all I really love food. But I do it all the time. I would probably eat twice a day on a good day if Tyler didn’t insist that I feed him regularly. Sheesh. He’s so high maintenance.) So as I was walking around the store turning things on and straightening up a little bit, I was munching on a rice cake with Nutella on top that I had grabbed out of my lunch box. As I walked and munched at the same time, I heard a little rustling by the front door, so I went to check it out. As I walked, a movement caught the corner of my eye. I turned to look, and  it was a kid! A little boy hiding in a clothing rack in my locked up, empty store! I did the logical thing and threw my hands in the air, rice cake flying, and screamed. The kid screamed back, and we just stood there for a moment screaming at each other.

The kid then said to me, “You’re crazy lady,” and ran out of my unlocked  front doors. Well, crap.

I then heard a little “ech-hem” behind me. I turned slowly. There was a short-ish woman standing behind me, clearly the boy’s mother, with Nutella in her hair and on her face. My rice cake was resting face-down on the sleeve of her white shirt.

Well, crap again.

She reached over, plucked my sticky breakfast off of her soiled arm, handed it to me, and said, “I think you may have lost this.” I accepted it, a little stunned, and started to ask if I could get her a paper towel, but she just held up her hand to silence me and walked out of my still unlocked doors, scowling.

So, my breakfast was ruined. And I officially have a bad case of The Monday’s.

The moral of the story is: never forget to lock your front doors if your store isn’t open yet. Also, always stay home on Monday. It’s just safer that way.

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Filed under Odds and Ends, The Monday's