At least, this is what my Grandmother keeps telling me.
She's a smart lady. I want to believe her. However, things have gone nowhere but downhill for the past six months, and I'm fully aware that we have not yet hit rock bottom. So where does that leave us?
With a list, of course. Lists make me feel better, so a list it will be.
A SOMEWHAT BRIEF, YET INTROSPECTIVE LIST OF THINGS I LEARNED IN 2008
1. Taking the time and effort to carefully construct a Monster Truck Potty will not convince a 2-year-old to give up diapers, even if the Monster Truck Potty is his idea. It will, however, test one's creativity and one's patience as Monster Truck decorations are not all that easy to come by, particularly ones suitable to go on a potty. Most likely, the Monster Truck Potty will sit, untouched, in the bathroom for many months during which time the 2-year-old will start to cry if you mention perhaps he might like to sit on the Monster Truck Potty.
2. Apparently, 87 year old men still think about (and plan to have) sex. It does not matter if they are in an assisted living facility, nor does it matter if they often fall asleep mid-conversation. That testosterone keeps raging on. Fascinating.
3. If one has no choice but to travel to one's parents house for Christmas, one should be prepared to rent a U-Haul to bring back all the gifts given to the grandchildren. Yep, that's what I said--WE HAD TO RENT A U-HAUL. I drive a Nissan Xterra, so it's not as if we were in a compact car. I packed lightly for us, so we had three suitcases for the entire family. Unfortunately, there still was not enough space left for a Barbie Diamond Castle, Barbie Crystal Carriage, 5-foot long firetruck, two bicycles, half a dozen Barbies, official talking fireman helmet, dancing Spiderman, Lincoln Logs, Mac laptop, and other assorted Christmas trinkets. There was also Blaker's gift, a Cuisinart Wine Refrigerator, which was totally worth any space it required because it houses the wine that will be my most important January Survival Tool.
4. It is not worth it to drive downtown, fight traffic, locate a parking spot, locate a watching spot, get settled, and listen to your toddler scream in terror all to watch the Suffolk City Fireworks Display on the 4th of July. In 2009, I will have a martini on the deck and watch people shoot bottle rockets in the park behind our house. Much easier.
5. If it is imperative to you that 50 Cent's "Da Club" come on your iPod Shuffle, wishing really, really hard will not make it happen. It will, however, come on after you have completed your entire 45 minutes on the treadmill and are fumbling with the Shuffle looking for the switch to turn it off.
6. Computer Geeks and Math Tools (you know who you are) can totally do handyman-ish things like re-plumb bathrooms and re-tile floors if they put their minds to it. All it takes is a Lowe's card and Google. Impressive. And kinda sexy.
7. Sampling a smorgasbord of white wine, red wine, dessert wine, sangria, and spray cheese from a can IS NOT a good way to spend the afternoon before you plan to go to dinner at a very fancy and very expensive restaurant. It will most likely make you very, very sick and damn near unable to enjoy your lovely French Countryside cuisine. It can also render one too drunk to put one's contacts in for dinner, and thus stuck wearing glasses which, despite being fairly hot in a librarian sort of way, are vaguely annoying.
8. Dunkin Donuts coffee is better than Starbucks coffee.
9. Even if you buy Lighting McQueen chapstick, emphasize that it's CHAPSTICK, that he's a BOY, and that BOYS DON'T WEAR LIPSTICK, a 2-year-old boy will still usually refer to his manly Cars chapstick as lipstick.
10. Movies are much better if, instead of sneaking in a diet soda, one sneaks in a flask of vodka. Thai food would be nice as well, but is much more difficult to hide in one's handbag.