Tuesday, June 28, 2011

"Does This Purse Make Me Look Fat?"

A few months ago, my MIL took me into her bedroom and asked if she could show me something. Now, if you have heard my terrible lingerie story, you could imagine my fear and trepidation as I followed her into her room.  I was getting ready to explain that I did not want any more used underwear when she pulled out a brown purse. A very nice brown purse, one that I had seen her use and admired.

"Do you want this purse" she asked me.

I tried to think of a catch, what could it possibly hurt to take her very nice, seldom used, purse.  So, I took it and said thank you, and was about to chalk this up as a good interaction with my MIL when it all went downhill.

"Oh, good," she says, "that purse was always too big for me. I'm glad it fits you."

What? Purses are now sized to fit people? I just absently smiled and nodded and thought, whatever, it's a nice purse.  Little did I know the trap I had just set foot in.

A few months later I was visiting with my MIL when she once again asks if I would like something of hers. She pulls out a gray wool sweater and has me try it on. It's a little boxy, a little big, but can be closed with a giant pin.  Since our house is so cold, I figured it was a good layering piece for when I am at home. I thanked her and took it.

Just recently, I was back again at my MIL's house, and sure enough she had some more clothes to give me.  This time it was two denim jackets. I put the first one on, it was okay, a different style then I usually wear, but I figured it would be good for work. I put on the second one and thought, oh no, this one doesn't fit at all.  My MIL follows me into the bathroom (which is a big no-no) and says how nice it looks. I reply that I thought it looked too big. That's the way it is supposed to be she informs me. As I go to put the jackets in my car she says: "I'm so glad you can fit into my clothes, I hate to give away all my clothes to the Goodwill, just because they are too big for me."

You see, this past year my MIL has lost weight. This is a good thing, I know, except for the constant comments about how much she has lost, what size she is now, and then of course the off-hand comments about my size.  I can usually just laugh it off, but after being asked recently if I was having a girl, and when I said I wasn't pregnant, getting an unusually long stare; I may be a little sensitive to my current size.

Things were going along just fine, until our recent weekend trip with my in-laws.  After a souvenir shopping trip with my sister-in-law, my MIL came back giddy. They had such a good time, went into all the stores, yadda yadda yadda.  They even tried on some clothes. And, oh how cute those clothes were. At which point she will go into great length describing each shirt she tried on.  But, oh how sad, none of them fit her or my sister-in-law. They were just TOO big.

At which point she says, "Amy, we wished you were shopping with us because we knew the clothes would fit you!" With a great big smile, like, isn't that so great??!  They would fit me because I am so big? Is that what you are saying?

This conversation would be repeated 4 more times over the next 24 hours. I am not exaggerating.  After the 4th time of being told that none of the clothes were small enough for my MIL or SIL, but they would surely fit me, I had a headache and was feeling vaguely nauseous.  I crafted an excellent comeback, in the event that the conversation would be repeated again.  Of course, it wasn't and now I sit here on my couch, eating carrots for lunch, wishing I had never taken that purse in the first place.

Except that I do really like the purse.  Sigh.

Friday, June 3, 2011

Sister Wives Take Seaside

This Memorial Day marked the 9th trip we have taken to Seaside, Or.  Any long time readers of this blog will surely remember this post on Seaside, and this one, and even this one.  Seaside is such a big deal to me and my family that I forget some people do not even know where Seaside is.  When asked my plans for Memorial Day I respond: "We are going to Seaside". And in that statement I assume the other person knows the history and the importance of this place. I will not rehash it here, I assume if you are reading this you most likely know me and have heard many times why we go to Seaside.

The first year my sisters and I were 27, 26, and 22, respectively. My niece and nephew were 5 and 7 years old.  Besides having amazing weather, this weekend felt like freedom. Freedom from work, responsibilities, parents (sorry mom!) and even spouses.  The sisters picked the food, the activities and the time frame. D & L were great sports about the weekend and just loved the freedom to eat as much taffy and junk food as they wanted. We have never had weather as nice as that weekend. I truly believe that if our first trip had not been so blissfully beautiful, we would never have returned.  The second year it rained, and I mean rained.  We caved on the "no car" rule and drove to the movies, went to a flea market, and I think that is the year we did the aquarium. We still went to the beach but we were wet and cold.

We have had some good years and some not so good years (rain, obviously) since that first trip.  Our group has grown from 5 people to 12.  We first added my mom and Jack, they both took their first trip to Seaside together. My mom at 50something, Jack at 8 weeks.  Then Micah and Rory joined the group. Last year we added 3 out of the 4 spouses and 2 more kids. This year only 1 spouse asked to return.

This year was a good year. It really truly was. Leaving the beach for a hotel in-town was a little scary but the rooms were so clean and the pool was so warm.  Bringing just Brandon as the sole spouse was very nerve-racking, how would that change the dynamics of the group? Last year we started having an itinerary, was that a good thing or is it just my anal personality pushing through.

This year we made space.  We have been very stubborn about Seaside. What we did the first weekend (minus the 3rd night restaurant) is what we do every year.  Long boring souvenir shopping, check; taffy from the candyman, check; ice cream every night, double check; tilt-a-whirl immediately following the ice cream, check; dinner at Norma's and Pizza Harbor, already drooling for next year; sitting on the beach rain or shine, check and check.

The first morning there my older sister suggested moving pizza to Sunday and going to that Mexican restaurant on Saturday night.  'That' restaurant being the one Brandon has been lusting after since last year. I have to be honest, my first thought was no!, but then (as long as Pizza Harbor was open on Sunday) I realized that would be a nice gesture. Letting Brandon choose a restaurant he was interested in and not being told "you eat what you eat and you don't throw a fit".  We ended up at a place that was quite sketch but the best Mexican any of us has ever had.  And after calling and checking in person, we had confirmation that pizza would be open on Sunday.

Taking my mom and at least one spouse has also given us something new: sister time. Early Sunday morning my sisters and I throw on clothes, hats, and glasses and walk to get coffee. Last year was a good 20 minute walk, this year we found a new coffee shop much closer to our hotel. We ordered coffee and pastries and then sat down to talk. I knew it was going to be a good time when I heard this song on the radio.  After about an hour we knew it was time to head back. Kids, mom, and one lone husband, waited for us to return.  As we stood up to leave the owner of the coffee shop said, "I'm jealous. What I just saw was magical".

Walking out I thought she was right.  Sitting and sipping coffee with my sisters in our favorite seaside town is magical.

Only 360 more days and we will be back in Seaside.  Can't wait.