Things you should never EVER say to a woman

Sometimes I’m amazed at how often people speak without thinking. Maybe it’s because it happens to me regularly. The “Are you pregnant?!” question seems to hit me at least once a month. FOR THE LOVE OF ALL THINGS GOOD, I WILL LET EVERYBODY KNOW WHEN I’M PREGNANT, AND UNTIL THEN STOP ASKING ME.

But you know, it doesn’t really bother me.

Just like constantly running into the sharp corner of my desk doesn’t leave giant bruises on my tushy.

So, as a public service announcement, here’s a list of things you should never say to a woman, broken into different categories. Who knows, maybe we can change the world, one avoided awkward situation at a time. 

1. Oh my gosh! Are you pregnant?
2. Oh, you’re not pregnant? Must be the shirt… (when you’re wearing your favorite shirt)
3. When are you guys going to start your family? Are you trying yet? (none of your business!)
4. Are you sick?
5. You look tired.
6. She’s old. How old is she? I don’t know, about your age I think?
7. You look good for your age.
8. Are you a natural blonde?
9. I’ve got so much to do before I turn… 30! (be sure to say 30 with total disgust)
10. My husband and I plan to start our family by 27, because we don’t want to wait until we’re old to start. (Totally had an intern who said this when I was 28 and single.)

1. Why are you still single? What’s wrong with you? Why haven’t you found a husband yet?
2. When my youngest sister got married first: Wait, you’re telling me the YOUNGEST sister is getting married before the OLDEST sister? How weird!
3. Then, when my middle sister got married before me: So the OLDEST sister is the LAST to get married?!

And last but not least, the following two categories are from my little scientific poll I did on Facebook. I’m not the only one who gets crazy questions.

1. Are you having twins?
2. You look huge!
3. (Early on in her pregnancy:) You’re going to be huge! (Submitted by Jenn)
4. Your hips are like a baby super highway. (Oh Bevin, I can’t believe someone said that to you!)

1. From Adra: I was recently asked if my dad was my husband. Awkward.
2. From Jenn & Stephanie: Referring to a purse, jewelry, sunglasses, and/or body parts with “Is that (are those) real?”
3. From Kelly: “You look hot… when you try.”
4. From Erin: “I’m really attracted to brunettes.” When you’re a blonde…

So, my lovely friends, just think. If each of us taught just one other person to never EVER ask questions like, “Are you expecting?!” when a girl wears a fashionable yet flowy shirt, then through the laws of multiplication (that’s a thing, right?) we could single-handedly save girls like me from having to burn all of her favorite shirts.

It would be life changing, I tell you. Life changing.

PS–Any other things that should be added to our list of never ever statements? Leave it in the comments!


Helene in Between

I’m linking this post up with Tell me about it Tuesday with  EmilyKathleenHelene and Rachel.

Also, just a reminder that Helene’s Texas Lovely give-away ends Tuesday! Be sure to go enter to win a free 8×10 print!


An ER visit, a car wreck, and 30 episodes of How I Met Your Mother

So if you follow me on Facebook, you’ve probably seen that my little sick week ended up with me visiting the ER Friday afternoon. Here’s what happened.

I had been down with a sinus infection for two days. Thursday night before bed I had a pretty bad asthma attack – something that’s commonly triggered by things like sinus infections and allergy problems. So I started breathing treatments with my trusty nebulizer, which in the past 3-4 years has been with me to Europe, Colombia, Mexico, and all over the US. I learned early on it kind of looks like a bomb on the carry-on x-ray machine. It’s a mistake you only make once, my friend.

I woke up Friday morning with more asthma attacks, and each got worse than the last. By Friday afternoon, I was home alone having my biggest one so far, when I texted Mr. Right, who was so nicely out running errands for me, and asked him to “Drive carefully, but come home and get me, we need to go to the ER.”

I got a quick text back “ok,” and then about ten minutes later, he called to check on me. Soon after he was home, and I met him at the door dressed and ready to go. Being the gentleman that he is, he opened the car door for me…

Only it wouldn’t open. And that’s when Mr. Right admitted to me that he’d just been in a wreck.

Awesome. Luckily the wreck happened about 30 seconds before I texted him about going to the ER, so it wasn’t my fault. Ironically, the person he was in the wreck with was on her way to the ER with an anxiety attack, and was in total meltdown mode. So Mr. Right had to quickly exchange information with a frantic woman, then head home to take his other frantic woman to the ER. He deserves a gold medal.

Thankfully nobody was hurt. And after a breathing treatment, a heavy dose of steriods (again) and a chest x-ray, I was back home on the couch, wheezy and agitatated but happy to be home.

A couple of take-aways:

1. Mr. Right is AWESOME in an emergency. He promised me ice cream the whole time we were there. He’s going to make an amazing dad. I was too sick for ice cream but settled for a big Diet Coke on the way home.

2. Going to the ER where you work is really nice, because you know you’re going to get fabulous care. But it also means that your coworkers have to see you at your worst, with no makeup and tears in your eyes. At least I wore a bra.

3. It’s ironic that just one week ago I blogged at work about my previous trip to the ER. It’s even more ironic when your coworkers who are taking care of you READ that blog just a week before (hand to forehead).

4. Between a giant steroid shot in my tushy on Wednesday and a six-day treatment of high-dose steroids beginning Friday, I have discovered that steroids make me an agitated, weepy mess. I cried at the ER (when nobody but Mr. Right was looking). I cried my way through a documentary about Elmo on Netflix. According to two friends who got the same shot last week, it’s normal. I’m normal. At least, that’s what I keep trying to tell myself.

5. During my five days of being home sick, I watched an 8-hour miniseries on the Kennedys. I watched 30 episodes of How I Met Your Mother (my new favorite show). I watched the Elmo documentary. I watched the Five Year Engagement (didn’t love it). I watched 10 minutes of the LOST pilot before deciding it was too stressful. And I watched 3 episodes of Gossip Girl before deciding that those girls are just mean and stress me out. I am SO TIRED of TV. PS–I LOVE How I Met Your Mother – please someone watch it with me so I can share inside jokes with you.

6. Being sick meant I had to miss out on a trip to Oklahoma for my grandmother’s 80th birthday. Boo. Instead I watched 92 hours of television and made a quilt.

7. I hacked into Mr. Right’s Papa Johns account on Saturday and ordered myself a pizza while he was in Oklahoma. I forgot to mention it to him. The next morning he called and asked me, “How did you like your large 3-topping pizza, cinnamon sticks and Diet Pepsi, my dear?” Man, that boy knows EVERYTHING. (turns out Papa Johns emails you a receipt when you order.)

Please say a little prayer for me that I bounce back these next few days. I’m so excited to be going to Portland, Oregon for a work trip on Wednesday – five glorious days in the Pacific Northwest in what I hear is a delightfully funky town. I just need to get my second wind so I can thoroughly enjoy it.

Burlap is the new black

I’m home sick for the second day in a row. Yesterday I felt much too terrible to be bored. Today I’m on the mend, still sick enough to need to stick close to the couch, but not fighting the fever/chills/extreme yuckiness of yesterday (you know I’m sick when I have zero desire to eat – a rarity for this girl). So let me warn you, I will probably be blogging/facebooking/pinteresting/texting all day. Because it’s killing me that I’m home and yet unable to go tackle the quilt lying in the middle of my sewing room floor. It’s just sitting there, begging me to finish piecing it, but I can’t muster up the energy. Yet.

Luckily I had already made this cute pillow about a week ago, and just hadn’t gotten around to posting her in the shop. I absolutely ADORE burlap. It’s like the new black – it goes with just about everything, is really affordable, and pretty forgiving. Combine it with some vintage lace I found in an antique store (in great condition), and you’ve got a recipe for major cuteness. I’m kind of tempted to steal this gal for my bed, but the reason I sew is so I can share, so instead she’s up in the shop, available to go to a good home.

Speaking of how awesome being sick is – yesterday I broke down and went to the doctor because I’ve got two big trips coming up and I don’t have time to be sick. He gave me a pretty ginormous steroid shot in the hiney – which means that I’m no longer eligible for the baseball Hall of Fame.  They used one of those giant needles, and I ended up bleeding all over the place (TMI?). So last night, Mr. Right calls me on his way home from ESL class (which I had to miss – so sad) and nonchallantly asks me, “You do know you have a giant bloodstain on the back of your shirt, right?”

Um, no. Apparently I went about eight hours with a giant blood stain on my shirt. It went really well with the coffee stain from the morning’s shirt (I changed to go to the doctor). But when you’re sick, blood stains and unwashed hair and smeared makeup aren’t really a big deal.

It’s just another reminder of how much Mr. Right really loves me, stains and all. What a guy.

Don’t forget, tonight is the deadline to enter my contest for a free Texas Lovely art print of your choice! Go here for all the details.

I have a confession…

My fellow blog friends, I have a confession…

Remember these beautiful and tasty cupcakes that Mr. Right and I made Sunday night?

You know the ones… with the homemade chocolate-banana icing… that happen to taste better served cold from the refrigerator? Ahh yes, now you remember.

Well last night I may have hit a new low. Mr. Right was working late up at the church, and after taking care of about a dozen chores, working on my nephew’s quilt and doing three loads of laundry, I decided to end the night with a bubble bath and a magazine. Possibly one of the most delightful ways to end an evening.

To make it even better, I had one last chocolate-banana cupcake left in the fridge, and I decided to eat it as I ran my bath.

But then true tragedy struck. As I was walking back to my kitchen to grab a glass of water, eating my beloved cupcake and waiting for my water to fill the tub, I dropped my cupcake. Icing-side-down.

And what did I do? I picked it up, and before I could even see if it had collected any dust or unmentionables from my kitchen floor (which, in my defense, was mopped less than a week ago), I stuck it in my mouth. Kitchen floor germs and all.

After I ate it I felt a little guilty. But you know what? I’d do it all over again. The cupcake was worth it.

Things you should never say to a woman

I’m going to start keeping a list of things you should never say to a woman.

1. Are you pregnant? 
I got it again last week from one of my ESL students. In her defense, before I left for class I looked in the mirror at my dress, which should be belted but I chose not to, and my baggy cardigan, tights and flats and thought to myself “Bethe, this isn’t the most flattering look.” But ESL is in the evening after a full day of work, and when you’re dealing with refugees from all over the world, how you look is the last thing they care about. It’s one of those wonderful places where you’re loved simply because you’re willing to love back. And so I looked a bit “baggy.” And ahem, pregnant. (still. not. pregnant. don’t even ask.)

2. Are you sick?
This one just stinks. I usually get this when I forget to touch up my makeup and my mascara starts to bleed down my eyelids.

3. (to a pregnant girl) Wow, you’re really filling out!
Someone said this to my gorgeously pregnant sister… they’ve obviously lost their mind.

And today, I’m adding this one…

4. Wow, you look sloppy today!
For the record… I was feeling kind of awesome today. Really cute – totally something out of a fashion blog. But apparently not everybody agreed.

So what did I do?

I ate cake. Chocolate cake. And now I’m over it.
Anything else you want to add to my “Never say this to a woman” list?

Another embarrassing moment

In Sunday School last week, the teacher asked us if anyone wanted to share their most embarrassing moment.

Or maybe it was the time I mooned Banana Republic.
And then there was the time I ripped my pants in a room full of people.
Or the time I almost missed church because I spilled toilet bowl cleaner in my eye.
Somebody should stop me before I hurt myself. Or someone else.
Oh wait… I already did that.

How I froze my husband out on our first date as a married couple

It all started about a week ago. I felt “off,” but thought I was just tired from the honeymoon. By Wednesday, when Mr. Right had finally convinced me to go to the doctor, I was in full-fledged misery. I get so nervous when I have to go to the doctor – part of me hopes they don’t accuse me of faking anything, and the other part hopes they don’t find out that I have some sort of exotic and totally embarrassing disease that I won’t be able to tell anyone about.
Which explains why this doctor visit went so… badly. First stop at this doctor is the ever-so-fun pee-in-the-cup test. I was feeling so crummy and was so anxious to see the doctor and get back to a busy day at work, that I got distracted. And went. But not in the cup.
Just as I finished my going, I realized I was STILL HOLDING THE CUP. That I forgot to actually use the cup for the aforementioned purpose. And there was NOTHING left in me. You can imagine my panic. I tried and tried and begged the good Lord to let me go just a little bit more. But nothing. I grabbed my water bottle out of my gigantic-yet-fashionable mom-purse and chugged it, hoping that by some miracle my body would quickly do whatever it does with water to make me need to go to the bathroom. Nothing.
I heard the lab folks open the tiny door to see if I had finished with my “specimen.” After all, I’d been in there several minutes. Nothing. I started to wonder… maybe I could just retrieve a little out of the toilet? Or maybe jumping up and down might help?
I finally managed a minuscule amount, and then found the nurse and explained to her what happened, trying to use a little humor to diffuse the situation.
She didn’t think it was funny. She looked at me like I was an alien.
Luckily, a minuscule amount was plenty. And the doc confirmed that I was indeed sick, doped me up on plenty of meds, and sent me on my way. Yet I got sicker, and sicker, so Friday she switched my meds. And I learned a valuable lesson.
Don’t take new meds for the first time on a hot date with your husband. Especially after eating a hamburger as big as your head. And especially when the side effect of those meds involves nausea. And vomiting.
Mr. Right takes great joy in planning the most fun dates EVER, and Friday night was no exception. He took me to our favorite burger dive M&O (seriously the best burger in the whole world), and then off to the Fort Worth Rodeo. We had to park about a mile away, and I realized on that walk that I wasn’t feeling well. But I was so excited that I thought I’d plug through and the feeling would pass.
It didn’t. It got worse as we hiked up to the very top of the coliseum. As we watched cowboys rope, wrestle, and ride various livestock, I started feeling worse. And worse. And worse. ‘Til Mr. Right looked over at me, about half-way through the show, and said, “I need to take you home – you look like you’re about to pass out.” Which, for the record, that was exactly how I felt, but I kept hoping the passing out feeling would pass, and I could get back to my hot date with my hot husband. Did I mention he was wearing a cowboy hat? (sigh)
So we walked another mile back to the car. At one point, my sweet husband, who’s the most hot-natured person I know, complained about how cold it was–it was below 30 degrees. And I told him that I felt fine, maybe even a bit warm. That’s when he knew I was really sick.
Oh, and I almost puked on his shoes in the parking lot. But I didn’t. Mr. Right piled me into his pickup truck and drove me home. He and I both knew that one bad bump and I’d be throwing up all those meds I’d taken with dinner (along with the greatest burger in the world). He very sweetly moved his cowboy hat out of my lap and onto his head for safe keeping, and suggested I crack the window to allow some fresh air to come in. Which I did…
Did I mention it was about 28 degrees? And we were going 60 on the highway? The more cold air that came in, the better I felt. My feverish self was so hot that the frigid air was a tiny relief. Soon I was practically hanging my head out the window.
My husband, on the other hand, almost froze to death on that 20 minute ride home. But true to his character, he didn’t complain. He just said, “If you had ever told me that YOU would freeze ME out, I never would have believed it!”
Mr. Right got me home, and I ever so gingerly crawled into bed, fully clothed in my best rodeo get-up. Sometimes you’re just too sick to change clothes. And my sweet husband, in a gesture of true romantic chivalry, found a trash can and placed it next to my bed. You know, just in case.
And that’s how my first date as a newlywed ended. No romance, just me curled up in the fetal position, wearing my rodeo clothes. Not exactly the date we had both envisioned… but it made me love him so much more.

How I almost killed my dog… again.

So you may remember that Harley the Wonder Schnoodle had a near-death experience back in November. I came home from church to find that he had gotten into my trash and eaten a few scoops of coffee grounds. Turns out that coffee is one of the deadliest people foods known to dogs. Waaaay worse than chocolate.
So $600, an overnight stay at the puppy hospital, and a good stomach pumping later (plus many tears and some minor hyperventilating on my part), Harley the Wonder Schnoodle was back to his old self. Unfortunately, he didn’t learn his lesson.
And neither did I. I’ve been so good at keeping the door to my kitchen pantry closed. Every time he starts sniffing around the trash I threaten him with a, “If you think I’m going to spend another $600 to pump your stomach if you get in this trash, you’ve clearly mistaken, mister! This time you’re on your own!” And then he gives me that guilty, knowing look of acknowledgement with those sad brown eyes. I mean, surely he understands me… right?
Unfortunately, no. Last night I walked in the door of my house to find trash everywhere. In my kitchen…
In my office…
In my living room…
In my dining room…
And of course, there were a week’s worth of coffee beans in that trash can.
My first reaction was simply to lay my head on my counter, close my eyes, and say, “No. Please no. Not again. I’m having friends over for dinner in a few minutes… this can’t happen now.”
And then I called my vet, hoisted Harley in my car and drove him, crying all the way (me, not him) to the animal hospital 30 minutes from my house. Along the way, I managed to somehow spill a glass of water in my lap. And my cell phone died. I would have charged it but I dropped my car charger in a cup of milk last week. When I finally carried Harley into the animal hospital (with no collar, no leash… I had forgotten both), I had tears streaming down my face, mascara smudged, and a giant wet spot on my skirt (definitely looked like either Harley or I had had an accident). Probably not my finest moment.
The people at my animal hospital are saints. They never once scolded me when I told them we’d been in just two months before for the same exact reason. Nobody judged me for my wet lap. Nobody looked at me funny when my eyes almost swelled shut after I had an allergic reaction to all the dog/cat hair in the tiny exam room. The vet saw us immediately, and we were in and out in less than 30 minutes. And this time for only $200. Turns out a little bit of induced vomiting and some IV fluids and the Wonder Schnoodle was a new dog. And we know that this time the culprit wasn’t coffee, but ham, which can cause pancreatitis in dogs. I’m learning so much these days.
Once I got Harley safely home, and I knew he wasn’t going to die, the dog got a good scolding. You can see where he hides when he’s trying to avoid a spanking.
And you’ll be pleased to know that I’m now the proud owner of a $100 heavy-duty steel trash can (with lid) that is impossible for a 20-pound schnoodle to knock over. At least, I hope.

This time…

I worked a 15-hour day on Tuesday. Okay, confession, three of those hours were spent sitting in class. But that’s a whole lot like work (especially because I was still wearing my work clothes), so I’m going to just lump that in with the other 12 hours. I got to work at 7 a.m. and got home at 10 p.m. Yeah… a long day.

Which might explain why I accidentally ran into a store display at the gas station. I had to stop and get gas about 9 p.m. right before I headed back to the office to take care of a few last things, and decided to run inside to grab a Gatorade to hold me over until dinner (yeah… no dinner until 10… I’ve started eating that late about three times a week… great for the figure I’m sure). Anyway, I was in a total rush, as usual, and so tired that I wasn’t being very careful, and just plowed right into a big store display of chips and candy bars. I have a nice big bruise on my hip to prove it. Off came the candy bars, scattering all over the floor, as the other customers–all there to buy their beer and lottery tickets–stopped and stared at me in unison… giving me that judgmental, “Uh huh, I bet she’s drunk” look. Awesome.
But I have good news… 36 days until all of my assignments are turned in, my thesis is defended, and I am DONE FOREVER with school. That’s just five weeks from tomorrow. Praise Jesus!

The zucchini’s evil twin

I have become a huge fan of the sauteed zucchini… I saute it in extra-virgin olive oil that I brought back from my trip to Greece last summer. It may not be the most low-fat way to prepare it, but it tastes amazing, and at least it’s not a french fry.

So you can imagine my shock when I took my first bite of zucchini on Saturday… only to find that it was a cucumber! That’s right… I had sauteed a cucumber in Greek olive oil. I swear, they look EXACTLY ALIKE!
Even worse… I was hungry, and low on food, so I went ahead and ate it. Kids, don’t try that at home.