Weekend in Kansas City

Weekend in Kansas City

My mom and I took off to Kansas City for a weekend of shopping and culture. Since I was traveling on her actual birthday it was nice to be able to have some mom and daughter time. 

The drive was filled with gossip, chatter and lots of laughter. We made a wrong turn once and it was a complete accident. Really it was my fault but an exit and a turn were side by side. Anyone could’ve made that mistake. 

We got to our hotel to discover it was filled with soccer and softball travel teams. Kids of all ages were everywhere! It felt like a convention was going everytime we would try to get on the elevator. The wait felt eternal. It wasn’t but it felt like it. Obviously I’m not the patient sort. We had soccer balls hitting the door but if you went to the back of the suite you were safe from the noise. It was a good thing because you could find kids lounging in the halls on the floor like it was a beach. I stepped over more than one with the warning don’t move…really. You know the parents were looking forward to the free happy hour that started at 5:30 that evening.

We dropped our bags and took off for some food and shopping until time to get ready for the ballet. The caprese salad  we had for lunch was delicious. I’ll be recreating that particular dish in the future. 

This was my mom’s first ballet and one that I’ve wanted to see for a long time. So a big check check on the bucket list. The Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts has beautiful architecture with views of downtown Kansas City. Since we’d never been there we went a little early, so we were able to get a glass of wine and sit back and people watch. The Rose’ was a tragedy. You just read that – it was tragic! Worst $8 ever spent so I don’t recommend the wine just go straight for the liquor. 

The people watching on the otherhand was spectacular! Flashy to understated. A real mix. There were a few ladies with an amazing amount of flesh on display for a ballet. Lots of little girls dressed up as princesses, so cute.

When the bells chimed we made our way into the performance hall for the ballet – Sleeping Beauty. It was everything I expected with some amazing performances by the dancers. One of the interesting things was a lady in the audience. She was up in the mezzanine and was conducting the orchestra pieces. I kept being distracted by her hand movements. At least she was enjoying herself and the music was fantastic. The Kansas City Orchestra was a treat! Mom and I felt like we got two for one. Ballet and orchestra performance. 

During Act III the guy in front of me drifted off to sleep at just the right moment in the wedding scene. I had a clear view of Puss in Boots and the White Cat’s performance. They were cute and funny. Such an amusing piece of the show. Anyway back to the sleeping fella….

His date kept looking at him so I could only imagine what she was thinking. Is she amused? I mean his head is so low I can see over it and this guy is well over 6 feet. Or was she irritated that she brought a guy that fell asleep at a public place in the middle of an artsy event. Of course he might’ve sprung for the tickets to impress his girl….if so he’s doing a bang up job. I’m laughing inside.

This reminded me of the time I went to see Swan Lake. The guy I was dating at the time got the tickets and the Bolshoi were absolutely wonderful. I’d seen them the year before in a Nutcracker performance except I was down and center. He got tickets up in the wing. I couldn’t see some of the performance on the wings of the stage because of my position in the audience. Our knees were touching the seats in front of us they were so close. I wonder if he went to sleep. I was so into the ballet I don’t recall or maybe it was just too long ago. Still I would’ve made fun of him just a bit if he did sleep. You know the guy in front of my mom and I got to hear about the sleeping later. 

I asked Mom what she thought about her first ballet. She said it was ok but she preferred a musical. At least a show where they sing. I think I ruined her by taking her to see Wicked first. It is amazing. I’ve seen the show on Broadway and a touring show. They are both exceptional, so if you ever get the chance – GO!

We were able to get down to the valet and out pretty quick. The cost was well worth it with my mom’s bum knee. Even if she didn’t have a bad knee I’d valet! We were starving and at that hour of the night we ordered pizza. They delivered right to the room…can’t beat that.

Next morning consisted of breakfast and a stop at Krispy Kreme for my dad…ok us too. Then we were heading south. We made a stop in Branson, MO to do a little shopping before finally making it home that evening. 

A successful mom and daughter weekend! So glad I could spend time with my mom. Time is short and fleeting and the older I get the more I notice it. 

A few more pics of our weekend.

Enjoy! Just not that wine Mom is holding!!!

-G.

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Online dating: from the creepy to the crazy and everything in between

Online dating: from the creepy to the crazy and everything in between

It was an eye opening experience and in some ways it was hysterical. I really never thought I would write about this but since my encounter in the Tampa airport it just won’t get out of my head, so here we are with me telling this story. A couple of years ago I decided to give online dating a try. I live in a small town where I’m related to a more than average number of people, and it’s not that easy to meet someone single because there aren’t a lot of options. Options I’m willing to explore. Maybe I’m too picky – hell yes and I should be. 

It was like a New Year’s resolution to try and get out there and meet someone. Not sit at home wallowing in loneliness. Later I would realize that loneliness is preferential to what I found online. Really it was a convention of perverts and misfits half the time sprinkled with a few really nice people. I started off with Christian Mingle. If there were some Christian men on there I didn’t find any. Talked to some nice folks in the chat room from all over the world but mostly it was trolls. I opted for the free version because my expectations were seriously low. My coworker was kind enough to send this ad for Christian Tingle, which is seriously funny. Click on the link for a good laugh. I jumped off that site after a month or so. I just remember I wasn’t on there long.

Next up was OK Cupid. Seemed “okay” at first but the longer I was on there the creepier the guys got along with the requests. As an fyi I cast a broad net geographically since I really don’t want to date a cousin. I became an exceptional investigator out of necessity. This is not to be confused with stalking because it’s not the same. I was able to eliminate a disturbing number of married men, guys with criminal histories and drug abuse issues which are all things I don’t need in my life. There are way too many that just wanted a texting relationship which isn’t really a relationship. Wth! Oh and the catfishing you have to constantly be on guard for that crap too. At some point I was actually on two sites Plenty of Fish (POF) and OK Cupid. I ditched Cupid when I had a guy think I would just pop over to his job and hook him up with a bj. Yeah not happening. 

Dick pics were a common occurrence. We started taking bets on how soon I would get a pic once I started talking with some guy. And if they think I wasn’t sharing all that with my friends wrong…it had become a sick form of entertainment for all of us.

So now I’m approaching July – seven months of online dating and I’d had enough. Right when I was about to leap off POF, which is a lot harder to disconnect from than you think. You can’t do it from the app on your phone you actually have to log onto the computer and go through multiple steps to get off that train to hell. I was going to miss my conversations with a fella from the UK but in the long run he would survive my sudden disappearance from POF. You got it I didn’t plan on saying goodbye.

What happened to slow that train up, some guy, that’s what happened. He was sweet and had all the attributes I was looking for in a man. I should’ve known he was too good to be true. Ultimately my investigating lead to discovering his stint in rehab, his lying and all the other women. I was thankful we didn’t meet but that was only because he stood me up. That was extremely disappointing at the time because we had spent so much time texting and talking on the phone and planning the meet up. Definitely makes you do an evaluation of self and wonder is it me….ummm no. He was the one that wanted to be Facebook friends and wanted me to get to know him and said he had nothing to hide. Bet he didn’t really think I would dig. 

So there I was sitting in the airport in Tampa, FL reading on my kindle, and  waiting for my flight when I look up and have this immediate recognition with this guy standing about 10 feet away. There was something about his tattoos, bald head and features that made me think I know him but how!? Could it be work…don’t think so. My gut is screaming at me…I rely on that 6th sense and it’s got something to say but what! We both made eye contact and the screaming gut is giving me the bad juju feeling that I need to figure this out. We end up on the same flight and he’s actually sitting one row ahead but on the opposite side. I give my brain a rest hoping by giving it another task I’ll figure this out in my subconscious. Still haven’t gotten it by the time we land and he’s standing there waiting for his buddy that was seated behind me, so as I pass him again we make eye contact. 

Off to find my gate and as I’m waiting on the tram they walk up to stand right behind me. Not a coincidence either cause I could tell he was trying to figure out this puzzle as well. Up pulls the tram and I walk to the other side and stand between people and grab a handhold. We make eye contact again, really this is getting old, and I can see the curiosity in his eyes. Then he speaks to his buddy….that was the trigger I needed to kick my brain in gear. His voice. Holy crap that was guy that was supposed to meet me and he ended up being a total loser. He never did figure it out from what I could gather and once I did I wanted to avoid the “do we know each other conversation”. I was thankful my flight was on time and he wasn’t on the next leg!

During that seven months of online dating I met eight guys in person. Seems like a low number but the pickings were slim! Aka I’m picky. One or two were worth a meet and that’s it. Several were way too young but they put out a good effort to get my attention. Still wasn’t happening bless their little hearts. One I actually dated for several months because he happened to keep my number long after I stopped online dating sites. He was lots of fun but we had different expectations for our lives and careers. His expectation was a party every day and a sugar momma. Don’t let the door hit you on the way out!

 Another guy wanted a nurse maid and that’s a bit much to ask from someone that you meet up with the first time and you’ve only ever talked online. At least he was willing to throw that out there right from the start considering some of the lies and half truths I’ve heard. I had actually gone to school with one of my dates. Not awkward but it did feel like I was out with a cousin so he was out. 

Then there was doily man. Holy crap that was a lunch date and all my coworkers sat at a table down from us. That was awkward as hell. He indicated what I should order and then proceeded to take my leftovers home. He touched my food. Most of the meal he talked about how he had been able to finally buy his dream car – it was a Toyota Camry. I’m being serious that’s what he said and I saw it his dream car. 

How do I know about the doilies – this was a bad decision I will admit but he wanted me to see his house. This was my first online date so I was still trying to figure this shit out. I agreed partly because I felt like I could take him if he tried anything and the posse knew where I was going. I’m not above giving someone an ass whipping to save myself. And some sick part of me just had to see. Again not the best decision but OMG what an amusing experience. This is a story we still laugh about around the office. 

It was like his grandmother decorated his home and he was showing off his palace except he allowed cats on the table. Ick. He kept talking about how I could lie around by the pool sunning myself with my girlfriends and he’d bring drinks. Not ever happening. He showed me almost every room in the house. No worries with the doilies I wasn’t going to be seeing a red room any time soon. When he finally noticed the tattoo on the inside of my wrist I knew I was out, thank the Lord, cause I wasn’t going for any of that crazy. The man had valentine flags lining the walk up to the door! Seriously. Freely admitted he sucked in the bedroom – if the doilies weren’t enough that just put the cherry on top.

Traveling made things fun. My phone would literally blow up with notifications. A few got demanding in their expectation of meeting. Seriously I’m there to work. It was nice to know that if I lived in a bigger city I would have a lot more options AND a lot more crazies to filter out. Geez the filtering would be work. I really missed an opportunity with all the conversations that I could’ve shared and blogged about…for real. I follow plentyoffishmyass on IG. That’s some funny stuff and sadly I can relate to a bunch of it. 

The reality is I actually know people that met through dating sites, and they were successful at finding a wonderful partner. That makes me happy for them. So I know it can work but it just didn’t work for me. In many ways I’m glad it didn’t work because the times it didn’t was a time that something really great or a fabulous opportunity happened in my life. They just weren’t meant to be which is fine. My coworker Mary said none of them could handle all my awesomeness! Lol Like I said I’d rather be lonely alone, than put myself in a position to be lonely in a relationship because that sucks. I’ve done that before no sense in doing it again. Of course my faithful companion Ginger might get a little ticked that I’m saying I’m alone. Technically I have a 14 pound rat terrier that rules my life. Not quite the crazy cat lady but close….really, really close. 

-G.

Enjoy the little things 

Enjoy the little things 

I’m overjoyed that my son is home for the holidays. His first night home I slept like a baby. My maternal instinct was just so happy to have him under my roof to feed and fuss over. Contentment oozes from the top of my head to the bottom of my feet.

Christmas was small in comparison to previous years but the time together is the most valuable and priceless part of his visit. We’ve discussed his future plans, plotted world peace, negotiated some serious topics, and enjoyed our time with friends and family. 

Motherhood is not easy. I’ve had to compromise, let go way to soon, and I’m challenged over and over on the fact that I let him decide to live with his father. I’ve been judged and found wanting with no evidence based on that one item alone. I learned a long time ago that you can’t defend yourself. Actions speak louder than words and I don’t need to justify my actions in this case.

Being a single mom hasn’t stopped with him living with his dad. I still have the same job of parenting. To guide him to being an independent adult that will be responsible and can handle any situation life throws at him. To know that he’s capable of adulting. I freaking hear this way too much or see memes about not adulting today. Well you don’t get to take a break from that and if you are it’s called being irresponsible. No accountability…get your shit together! Just do it…life sucks balls sometimes. Leaping off my soapbox now. Makes me a bit crazy when I hear that kind of stuff. Now for those of you that are being funny and you’re responsible…you have a pass on my gripe. 

Just in case anyone isn’t sure adulting means: you pay your bills first then play with what’s left. Take care of your family and kids first before spending on wants or frivolous items. 

Back to where I was going with this blog…it has been a load of experiences. Mountain coaster riding…no brakes!!! Thrill seekers are us. Topped that experience off with keys locked in the vehicle. Only I can do that twice in less than a month. Too many distractions and I need to do some ‘being in the moment’ and not looking ahead to the next moment. BUT the gentleman that busted my keys free cracked us up. He drove up in his little van and backed into the space next to me. He jumps out and as he comes around I see his cap says ‘Jesus is Lord’ or ‘I love Jesus’. Can’t recall because I was totally thrown by the heavy rap song that busted loose unexpectedly from his ride along with the clear word ‘Fuck’. Whaaat….that word and Jesus typically don’t go together. He turns it off and doesn’t say anything. As he starts breaking in to my vehicle his phone goes off – he answers and as soon as he gets off the music starts again – I hear fuck AGAIN! I’m trying not to laugh as he frantically tries to cut the music off. He then tells us that he had picked a Christmas music station on Pandora and instead of Christmas music he gets rap with foul language every time. OMG hysterical and his face was bright red too. He made quick work of the break in so we were off and blazing a trail home so we could see Rogue One. Soooo good and if you don’t know Star Wars that’s a tragedy! We saw Assassin’s Creed the week before…it was good too. My son said they did a good job, and he’s my little gamer so he’ll know better than I will.

Up next a trip to Ft. Smith, AR to ring in the New Year and then off to Tulsa, OK to watch the Tulsa Oilers play some hockey against Wichita. Fun times. Any seat in the BOK Center is good so no complaints and we got to listen to fans from both sides cheer on their team. It was our first time to see a minor league game and it was fun so we’ll be doing it again!

Point is I don’t get a ton of time with my son, but we try to make the most of it. Goes back to Be Here Now and how important that concept is when he’s with me and how finite our time is together. To rip off Zombieland – one of our favorite movies – Rule #32 Enjoy the Little Things! 

Happy New Year! I hope that all those that read my blog and even those that don’t are blessed with a fantastic year!

-G.