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Monday, July 06, 2009

The Lost Week Found in Pictures (Wednesday and Thursday)

children mentioned and seen...

I have finally finished undigging from the final week in June, a week that included my blogoversary, Advocacy Day, seeing four bloggers, going to the beach, and stripping amongst kosher beef. An explanation in pictures...


Woke up and went to meet Lindsay on the farm to pick blueberries.

Drove back towards home to meet Lindsay and Karen for lunch. Decided it would save time if we changed into our bathing suits at the restaurant for the splash park we were going to after we ate. Forgot that I had marked up my breast when I found the lump until the ChickieNob started calling out, "someone has written on my mommy's boobie! Someone drew on my mommy with a Sharpie! We don't draw on skin!" Thankfully, she never noticed the fact that I had Meghan's name scrawled across my breast a few weeks ago.

Went to the splash park and splashed our hearts out.

Ran home and jumped in the shower. Tried to make myself look presentable because I was meeting Cassandra at a conference center which had the vibe of Bohemian Grove. Wondered as I drive through the campus if Cassandra is secretly part of the Illuminati, which would explain the great questions she asks for Thoughtful Thursdays. We went to get Starbucks so I could drink coffee and stare at her glossy glossy hair. It is like out of a Pantene ad. She is exactly as you would expect from her blog. Smart, funny, and inquisitive. I had a great time and wish we could have had a full day together.

Went home and collapsed.


Woke up and again tried to make myself look presentable. Josh went to drop off the kids and I drove to meet Josh so we could go downtown together but I could have my car later. Decided halfway into the trip that I needed to pee. Decided 3/4th of the way into the trip that I needed to pee so badly that I would not reach Josh with dry underpants. Pulled off in park and peed in a port-a-potty. Tried to look as if it were normal to stop by a park in business attire without a child and pee in said port-a-potty.

No pictures, thankfully.

Got downtown to Advocacy late. Met up with my fellow Marylanders. Felt like the weakest link in our group which included fellow bloggers, Body Diaries by Lucy, Two is a Family, and My Nest, Someone Else's Eggs (which are not the people featured below).

Ran by Julie's table to say, "hey, I'm feeding you tonight." And then swung back in the room when I found out Marisa was there! Could not have been more excited to meet her face-to-face after watching her inject videos numerous times. It was pretty damn emotional to get to hug her.

I'm not sure I can sum up how it feels to enter the Senate office buildings. Well, I can start here: there is an entirely different vibe in the air right now than there was for the last few years. It's not just because I'm happier with government. It was just a remarkable (as in, everyone was remarking on it) difference from the way people smiled at you in the hallway to the feeling that you belonged in that space--that as a citizen, you have a right to ask your elected officials to help you.

Our first appointment was at Ben Cardin's office. We met solely with staffers. My first meeting was definitely my best meeting. I felt like the staffer heard us and we articulated the message well. I tagged along to Barbara Mikulski's office just because I love her and wanted to soak up the vibes of being near her even if she wasn't in the room.

I met with the staff for a congressman from New Jersey as well as Donna Edwards. All in all, it was an incredibly powerful, emotional day. Thank you, Resolve, for organizing it.

Jumped on the Metro and headed to pick up the kids, sitting next to a very chatty teenager who wanted to tell me the story of her trip to Washington for about 12 stops. Doesn't notice that I am merely nodding at her with a glazed expression on my face. Got off, grabbed the kids, raced home, gave them a meal while I cooked, tucked them in, and then went downstairs to collapse for five minutes before Julie came.

Meal: Salad. Pasta with kalamata olives and fresh mozzarella. Pizza di Patate. Chocolate chip cookies. Conversation: salty, fizzy, sweet, and surprising.

Josh learned a new word from Julie: anhedonia--which is the inability to derive pleasure from pleasurable things.

Julie tried to steal my plates. My beautiful plates given to us by Josh's grandparents. It has since been a week so I can't remember why we took this picture or why we thought it was funny...but it the time. And we hadn't even cracked open the bottle of wine she brought. So this is life...sober.

It was wonderful to get time again with Julie, but like last time, it was just too damn short. She is the type of house guest who would not smell like rotted fish after three days (or however that saying goes). In fact, I am quite sure that if you kept giving me liquid and food, I could have sat there indefinitely (oh...and I guess a little sleep). She is just fascinating and funny and exactly like a human version of her blog.

These pictures made me realize that I am so freakin' short. After dinner, Josh drove her back to the Metro, but she missed the last train so he took her into Bethesda. In the meantime, I did a frantic clean-up and load of laundry because the next day, we left for Vampire Weekend at the beach.

The rest of the stories and pictures coming tomorrow...


WiseGuy said...

What a great week...and such super company!

Come to think of it, I am pretty sure Cassandra belongs to some secret society of unearthly intellectuals...that could explain several things, including her TT origin!

And thanks to Julie, I learnt a new word too! anhedonia

battynurse said...

Sounds like loads of fun.

Anonymous said...

Anhedonia sounds like a good name for an album, or a heavy metal band.

I'm glad you had a great time. I have totally been in that "Oh my God I have to pee NOW!" situation and it isn't fun. My husband and I went sailing with his cousin and I didn't use the head while I was on the boat because it was nasty. On the way home I figured I could dash in to a gas station rest room, but there wasn't one and I ended up peeing behind their dumpster. You never forget having to pee that badly and having nowhere to go, mark my words. You'll be 99 and have forgotten everything about RESOLVE advocacy day, but you'll remember that porta potty ;)

Chickenpig said...

That was my "anonymous" comment. Whoopsie.

Kristin said...

What a a week! I am seriously jealous that you got to spend time with Julie again. I've been reading her blog since before Charlie was born.

Chelle said...

What a crazy, wonderful week! It sounds like you were running all over the place. It sounds like it was a lot of fun to meet up with so many great people. Do you need a nap now? lol

Jen said...

That looks like an awesome, but busy week.

annacyclopedia said...

Sounds like it was a great week - thanks for sharing the lovely photos!

calliope said...

what a massive week!!
& you look so cute!!

IF Optimist, then... said...

What a great week! I am exhausted just reading about it.

Thank you so much Mel for spending valuable time away from your family and other important projects to speak on all our behalf to the senators. I really appreciate it.

Cassandra said...

I can't believe you were staring at my hair for all of those hours. Thanks for the hair and other compliments. It was sooooooo good to see you!

Once a friend tried to steal an object d'art from my house (never figured out if it was only a joke or for real). Her deception didn't work, because that object is bigger than a soda can... and she tried to smuggle it out in her pants.

Beautiful Mess said...

I love all the photos! love all the huge, happy smiles! I'm glad you had such a great week! Thanks for sharing the pictures!

Anonymous said...

I love getting these little glimpses into your life, Mel.

And I'm sure you've heard it a million times, but you have the greatest smile ever. It makes me happy just to see it. :)

VA Blondie said...

Sounds like a busy and fun week! The pictures look like you were having a great time.

Cassandra said...

Also, if I were a member of the Illuminati, there would already be universal health care including IF. Clearly I am not the power behind the power.

Lavender Luz said...

Love seeing you and experiencing your week through you!

And VERY jealous of those people in the picture who get to BE with you.

Mic said...

What a busy week! I'm sorry that we didn't get to meet face-to-face at Advocacy Day but I will totally agree with your assessment that the air was electric on the Hill!
Thank you for all you do!

Sunshine said...

Yeah for your week, and yeah for posting pics of us from Adv Day! I can only imagine how it is to have Julie as a house guest, Mel!! xoxo

Twinkletoes said...

Hopped over from Julie's blog - you two had such a great time! Love the photo stories!!!

Io said...

I am 99.9% sure that Julie is my sister and somehow got lost from my family. Seriously. I saw the picture and thought - when did my sister get her hair cut and what is she doing on Mel's blog?
I am glad that you, my long lost sister, and everyone else that went kicked ass and represented!