An Italian-American living la dolce vita in the Deep South

An Italian-American living la dolce vita in the Deep South

Friday, August 5, 2011

7 Quick Takes: In Which You Have all the Answers

~1~ We were recently on vacation when I got caught in an interesting situation. Timothy and I had accompanied a family we had just met to a nearby town. When it was time to go, the 16 year old in the other family asked to be allowed to drive us all home. I was thunderstruck when his mother agreed to let him drive the van, with three adults and three children under the age of 7, over 15 miles of twisty, mountain roads. The ink was still wet on his license. Call me crazy, but there was no way in heck I was getting in that van.
QUESTION: What would you have done?

~2~ This Saturday we are combining our family night with a family back-to-school meeting. Some of the things under discussion will be goals for the upcoming school year, computer time, and limited television/wii time during the week. Last year we had a no gaming policy except on weekends.
QUESTION: What limits do you place on computer/gaming/television during the school year?

~3~ Recently I watched an online trailer for the show Jersey Shore: Season in Italy. For the entire 90 second trailer I could not believe my eyes. Do some people really behave that way? Apparently so. I was horrified at their debauchery (there really is no other word). And then I couldn't help thinking ...
QUESTION: What do their Moms think when they see the show? Are they proud?

~4~ Toward the end of July I was already being approached to volunteer, serve, donate, and commit to various activities in both schools. This year I want to be free to do other projects, so I am going to be very selective on the ways I get involved.
QUESTION: How do you say no?

~5~ I popped into Old Navy yesterday just to . . . oh, to see if I could find something fun to wear. Nothing, absolutely nothing fit right.
Question: Am I too old to be shopping at Old Navy?

~6~ I have never been one to join a gym . . . something about touching equipment that someone else has sweat on just grosses me out. I love to walk, jog, bike, and work out at home using my collection of exercise cd's. My favorite workout is The Firm, which uses interval training of cardio and body sculpting. It is a serious workout.
QUESTION: Do you have a favorite exercise cd?

~7~ My husband has a great friend who periodically gives us the use of his condo in Hilton Head, but this year the week coincided with the first week of school for the older boys. Darn. But wait . . . My dear husband (who travels periodically for work) said it was my turn and for me to go with Timothy while he stays home to work and take care of the older boys. So all next week the bambino and I will be at the beach.
QUESTION: Gee, what am I going to do at the beach with all that free time?

**Speaking of exercise, visit Jen at Conversion Diary . . . she has a funny jogging story.


Ellen Stewart (aka Ellie/El/e/Mrs. Seaman) said...

I'm always been too curvy, even when I was 110 pounds a few years back, for Old Navy. I do buy their sundresses, but that's it.

I set TV limits for myself for the school year!

A woman once came to pick up my son for a beach trip, but she didn't have enough seatbelts. I said no way. Mac was disappointed, he was too young to be embarrassed, and that mom was angry, but I'm glad I stuck with my safety rules.

No favorite exercise DVD's. The Firm series is so hard! (pun intended) Maybe that's why I'm too curvy for Old Navy?

Jeanne G. said...

Last time I shopped at Old Navy, I found the pants were all too tight just above the knee. Does that mean my legs are too fat, or does it mean my legs are too long? Either way, I don't shop there anymore... but I don't think it is an age thing.

Wendy said...

The best way to say "no," for me, at least, is, "I'd love to do that, but I just can't (this year)." The key is not to give a reason. Reasons get debated, "I can't" is non-negotiable.

Last year, I needed a break from volunteering because I was stretched to thin and couldn't serve my family the way I wanted to (I was wiped out!). A sincere "I can't" worked very well and no one asked for details.

Joe Kovac said...

Thanks for commenting over at my blog!

Just because I can get people to understand math doesn't it was easy! Some of them put a lot of hard working into understanding, and I try to honor their effort by putting in an equal amount of good teaching. I'm sure you could do it too if you had the right teacher!

"The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind" by William Kamkwamba is definitely top 5 favorite. You won't be disappointed.

I'll give an opinion on question 4. My wife and I also have a difficult time saying "no" to serving others as well. When approached about making a commitment decision, we always answer, "give me time to think about it." That gives us a chance to sit down and talk about it together to see if that choice makes sense in what we consider our priorities. As soon as we decide, we give the person a response and why. They are usually very understanding if I/we can't, and very excited if I/we can. Try it out!

Kerrie @ TFK said...

When I worked at Old Navy during college, I wasn't a fan of their cuts. Now, I will pick up a top once in a blue moon.

Mary @ A Simple Twist Of Faith said...

Enjoy that week at Hilton Head! Sounds like a slice of heaven to me!

Suburban Correspondent said...

The driving thing is DRIVING ME CRAZY! I cannot believe how cavalier parents are about their teens driving. I can understand their letting their 16-17 year olds drive (sort of). But why do they let them drive their friends around? Why do they let a child with only a permit drive the entire family around? Or, as in your case, expect other people to entrust their children's lives to a new driver? Right now I have a teen daughter chomping at the bit to ride with all her friends, whose parents apparently have NO RULES involving who is in the car with their children. We are the only people saying no. My husband was almost killed by an 18-year-old driver - don't people realize that other people's lives are at stake when they let their teens drive with other teens?

jen said...

#3: i'm not sure their moms care -- that might be why they act the way they do. *insert rant on the lack of active parenting these days*

#4: "let me look at my schedule. oh... i have another commitment. i'll have to say 'no'." that other commitment could be a block of time where nothing else can be scheduled.

#6: before i was pregnant, i was a fan of taebo.

jen said...

oh... and #1:

california has a graduated driver's license and part of the rules are that you can't drive with anyone under 21 in the car until a certain age and you can't drive at night.

tiziana said...

Per le prime domande, io penso che tu sia brava e saggia per darti una risposta da sola. Purtroppo anche da noi in televisione ci propongono trasmissioni volgari e per questo guardiamo tanto sport.
Io so cosa puoi fare del tuo tempo libero al mare:
- giocare a bocce con Timothy
- fare castelli di sabbia con Timothy
- cercare conchiglie con Timothy
- giocare a palla con Timothy
- giocare a carte con Timothy
- fare puzzle con Timothy
- costruire aeroplani con Timothy
- portare l'acqua con il secchiello a Timothy
- costruire Lego con Timothy
- giocare a tanti giochi in scatola con Timothy
- bere un buon cappuccino e sperare che arrivino in fretta i cuginetti che giocheranno con Timothy.

Lisa said...

Let's see: 1)I don't think there was a graceful way to get out of the situation -- esp with new friends. If it were an old friend family or relatives, you could drop a semi-joking hint and expect it would be picked up -- but a new friend... I don't know. I can't imagine a parent allowing that situation, regardless... Ugh. Hard one.
2) Our children are allowed 20 minutes or 30 minutes on computer games (dep on age) every day -- IF their rooms are clean, their homework is done, and they aren't in trouble for anything... Good leverage for me! :)
3)It's disgraceful. Either their moms are horrified or their moms brought them up in such a way to want to be on such a program and they are fine with it. Sad either way.
4) I have a problem saying no -- especially if it's the Sisters asking. I way over-committed myself last year, though, and am working on my, "No, I'm sorry, I just can't do it this year" speech, too... I totally sympathize.
5) I think Old Navy clothing is designed for pencil shaped girls.
6) I guess being the proprietor of a household full of sticky toddlers and sweaty teenagers for so many years has made me numb to the grossness of the gym. ;0) The "formal commitment" of using the gym (and a personal trainer who guides me through exercising with a bad back!) has worked for me. But, cheesy as it may be -- I have to admit my sis and I used to love to dance to the oldies with Richard Simmons. (I know... that just landed me square in a whole other category of personalities, didn't it?)
7) Oh my goodness I am so jealous! I'd give a million dollars to spend a whole week just me and my seven-year-old! Who needs to do anything? Do as much "nothing" as you can -- and enjoy every minute!