MBA Mommy

Part MBA, Part MRS, Part MOM…..All ME

Posts Tagged ‘fun’

Bad Habit?

Posted by mbamommy on August 9, 2012

I’ve decided I’m going to start smoking again.

Ok, which part of that statement is more shocking to you? That I’m going to start smoking? Or that I’m actually admitting to having smoked in the past? Yes, it’s true. For those who haven’t known me my whole life, I haven’t always been….well…angelic. I made some bad choices. I tried a few things. I broke a couple rules. And I had a blast doing it. Sue me.

I know, I know. I know all the research. Smoking is bad. It makes you smell bad. It makes your breath stink. It’s bad for other people. It could even kill you. Blah, blah, blah.

Ok, I’ll admit it, I don’t miss smoking. I don’t miss how much they cost. Or having my wardrobe smell like a bar. Or smelling like a bar myself the morning after. I appreciate the additional lung capacity that quitting has given me (Crossfit would be waaayyyy more challenging if I still smoked). And, hey, those holes in your neck are a pretty big turnoff. As are the wrinkles and the raspy voice.

But let’s focus on the positives here, people. Well….maybe just one positive. And it’s an important one! Ready for it?

Smoke Breaks

Back when I smoked, I took smoke breaks. I still see people taking them now (of course, it’s usually at least 50 yards away from the entrance of a building, right by the dumpster, in freezing cold weather….). I took them at work. If I remember correctly, I think employers were legally required to allow a smoke break every hour. I remember co-workers who didn’t smoke being jealous of that break. And, I took them with friends. I’d walk outside, get 10 minutes of fresh(?) air, chat with some peeps or just stand by myself there smoking. It was like a built in 10 minute self (or friend) check-in multiple times a day.

And, boy, I do miss that.

Ok, so maybe picking up smoking in order to slow down and take breaks throughout the day isn’t the most intelligent idea I’ve ever had. There are some serious health risks involved, after-all. But, whaddya say we re-implement those mandatory self check-ins? Those 10 minutes every couple hours to grab a friend, stand outside and chat? I can’t see anything wrong with that!

Fine. I won’t pick up smoking again. I’ll just pick up smoke breaks.

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Gratuitous Photo Post

Posted by mbamommy on August 26, 2011

We recently went on a trip to visit family on Orcas Island in Washington State.  I say trip and not vacation because that’s what it was.  A trip.  Vacations are when you can lay on the beach, read a book, sleep in and do exactly what you want when you want.  It has its merits.

A trip includes kids.

It also has its merits.  Pretty cute ones too.

First, S took over taking care of her little cousins.

And there was a lot of exploring to be done.

And just a few shenanigans.

Which ended in this.

But, overall, a great time was had by all.

And, now, MBA Mommy is going to look into that aforementioned vacation. 😉

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Drinking the Kool-Aid

Posted by mbamommy on August 11, 2011

Have you ever heard that phrase?  For some reason I’ve been hearing it a lot recently.  So, I decided to do a little Wikipedia research (have I mentioned I’m a big fan of Wikipedia?) about where it came from.  I always thought it came from Tom Wolfe’s “The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test“.  Turns out I’m wrong:

Drinking the Kool-Aid” is a metaphor, used in the United States and Canada, that means to become an unquestioning believer in some ideology, or to accept an argument or philosophy wholeheartedly or blindly without critical examination. The phrase can sometimes have a negative connotation, or can be used ironically. The basis of the term is a reference to the November 1978 Jonestown Massacre, where members of the Peoples Temple were said to have committed suicide by drinking a “Kool-Aid”-like drink laced with cyanide.

Sweet.  Glad I’m using it in my day-to-day vocabulary.  And I always thought it was such a positive phrase.

But…since I am using it…and since I like the phrase, I decided to do a list of all the non-cyanide laced Kool-Aid I’ve been drinking recently.

  • Working out at 5:30am in the morning with J.  Man, is it tough, but boy is my day great afterwards
  • Not drinking (see above)
  • Meditating
  • Being Present (see above)
  • Living Primally
  • Vibram 5 Fingers (see above)
  • Yoga
  • Social Media
  • Summer in Colorado
  • Writing
  • Pottery
  • Taking time for myself
  • Taking time with friends

What about you?  Drank any Kool-Aid lately?  Let me know what you’re inspired by!  Maybe if we get enough peeps talking about positive Kool-Aid drinking, it’ll debunk the negative connotation…thereby allow MBA Mommy to enjoy using the phrase without feeling guilty. 🙂

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From Here to There, From There to Here…..

Posted by mbamommy on August 4, 2011

…funny things are everywhere.

I realized yesterday that it was a year ago this week that our migration to Colorado began.  J had just received his job offer and I jumped on a plane and spent 4 days looking at rentals, schools and therapy providers.

Was it really just a year ago?  It feels like a lifetime and a minute all rolled into one.  So much has happened in a year and so much more will happen as we go forward (ugh….I shouldn’t try to be philosophical before I have my coffee in the morning…that was terrible).

I have an analogy I like to use to describe my family’s situation right now.  You know how when you play a slot machine, you pull the the lever (or, I guess these days you just press a button), and the slots spin around and around, slowing down one by one until they line up along the line?  And then you see what you’ve won?  I feel like our life is kind of like that slot machine.  The first slot has stopped spinning….the kids/school situation.  The second one is slowing….J’s job situation.  The third one is still spinning and will need to continue until the other two are in place (me!).

To go in more depth about that, I should give a (semi) brief update on how everyone’s doing.

Z is doing amazingly well.  When we first got here and he started preschool with his IEP and private therapy services, they had to do a lot of interventions to help him regulate his sensory overloads and learn how to play with other kids.  We (J, I, his therapists and the teachers) literally had to teach him how to play.  And, not just the turn-taking stuff that every kid has to learn. We also had to teach him to read expressions, understand the give and take of a conversation and how to be flexible enough to allow other people (adults first and then kids) influence the games they were playing without having a complete meltdown when he wasn’t scripting everything.  In the beginning, the OT would bring him in from recess early and take him to the ‘motor room’ where she had a swing and a dark, quiet corner where he could wind down.  Otherwise, his sensory system completely overloaded with the transition from playground to loud, chaotic bathroom to sitting down in a classroom.  By the end of the year, not only was he a part of every minute of the class, he was helping other kids resolve conflicts and the SpEd team was using games/therapies they usually reserve for kindergarteners because he blew through the more age appropriate stuff!

It wasn’t an easy road in the least.  I spent a lot of my time driving him to and from school and therapy (he spent 10 hrs a week in school and 10 hrs a week in therapy).  But the teams he worked with were all angels…truly seeing my son and his strengths and using those strengths to work through the weaknesses.  One example: Z is obsessed with airplanes.  Has been for as long as I can remember.  So, his school OT created a game where she’d ask him “How is your engine running?  Fast, like an F-16?  Just right, like a Blackhawk? Or slow, like a Bi-plane?”  She used it to help him identify how he was feeling and she altered the traditional usage from Winnie the Pooh (fast like Tigger, just right like Pooh or slow like Eeyore) to something he could relate to.  She made charts for school, home and his private therapy so we could all use it.  He loved it and was able to identify how he was feeling and we could help him regulate from there.

A year ago, Z would scream when we washed his hair during bath.  He HATED getting his hair and face wet and we’d have to take extra precautions not to get water in his face or ears….I think it actually hurt him somehow.  We started swim lessons at the beginning of the summer and for weeks he would cry and get upset whenever his teacher wanted him to put his head under water.  And then…one day…BAM….he was swimming.  Something clicked in that little head of his and now we can’t keep him ABOVE water!  He graduated to the next level of swim school.  He’s extremely strong and can swim a good ways across the pool underwater.  We’re at the pool all weekend, with him jumping in, swimming to us and back to the wall, jumping off our shoulders, playing with older kids…he even ventured into the deep end last weekend!  J and I look at each other sometimes and say, “Is that really our little Z?!”

Before we moved here, I heard horror stories about services available in Colorado.  How the schools weren’t great, how there weren’t experienced service providers, insurance didn’t cover autism related services, etc etc.  I have to say that I’ve had nothing but amazing experiences with everyone who’s worked with Z.  They were right about insurance….the situation is abominable….I’ve even thought about getting in touch with Erin Brokovich to see if she could make a difference, but I’ve been a little busy with my own little life so far.

So….Z’s doing so well that we stopped therapy for the summer.  I don’t think we’ll be starting ABA again but we are in the process of getting OT rolling again.  He’s still got some challenges regulating himself (what 4yo doesn’t, right?) and because of his new school environment (more on that in a minute) we think it’s still important to have outside support.

The biggest change (for me, at least) is my relationship with me.  A year ago, he could take me or leave me.  He was ALL about Daddy.  I would have to coerce affection out of him.  For some reason, he just wasn’t interested in hugging and kissing me…or anyone else for that matter…just Daddy.  There were nights when I would go into his room to say goodnight when he and Daddy were reading and J would be close to threatening him with timeout so that he’d give me a hug. I always stopped him before it got to that point, satisfying myself with just blowing him a kiss.  And, I understood what was going on.  But, it still sucked.

He still fights me at every turn.  His logical little brain constantly looks for ways to rationalize his way out of doing his chores or anything else I tell him to do.  He questions everything and refuses to accept a half answer, which I mistakenly try to give him sometimes.  But instead of hitting, scratching, biting, kicking when I say no to him, he (mostly) accepts it.  Pouting and telling me he’s mad at me of course…..but a FAR cry from our arguments of a year ago.  Folks, he TELLS me he’s mad.  Do you understand how HUGE that it?

Anyway, our relationship has changed and evolved into something I treasure.  He asks for me to read books to him at night.  He asks me to cuddle with him.  He comes to me when he’s upset.  He freely gives me hugs and kisses, even sometimes without me asking for them.  He tells me he loves me and squeezes even harder.  Those parents of kiddos on the spectrum that are reading this will understand how unbelievably precious this is.  Those parents of NT kiddos…..please cherish each and every hug, they are a blessing.  I find myself waiting until he lets go to end an embrace because every hug reminds me of when I used to not get them.  And I never want them to stop.  Hopefully now they won’t (at least until high school and I’m a constant embarrassment to him).

OK, so now little S….who’s not so little anymore.  My baby girl.  What can I say about her?  Well….not much without getting teary.  She’s our angel, she’s our diva, she’s the light of our house and she can just as easily bring our home crumbling down around her with her tantrums.  She’s growing a very funny, very sweet, very LARGE personality.  Her teachers all love her and comment on her dramatic way of talking.  She’s all hand gestures and exaggerated facial expressions.  She’s a smart little lady who excels at everything big bro doesn’t: relationships, friends, reading people….street smarts to his book smarts.  She’s a tough little girl who won’t back down to bullying by big bro.  She’s a natural athlete who can throw a ball better than Z.  She’s not afraid of anything and is usually the one leading Z into trying new things (like swimming).  She’s my girly-girl who loves all things pink (including her elephants) but is dirty from head to toe at the end of every day.  She idolizes big bro, is a Daddy’s girl and has an amazing bond with Mommy.  She’s a snuggler and a cuddler and a jokester all in one.  What’s the saying?  “When she’s good she’s very very good.  And when she’s bad she’s terrible.”?  Something like that.  Well, that’s my S.  She’s stubborn, independent and opinionated. (I have NO idea where she gets that). She keeps us on our toes and laughing all the time.  I remember being terrified of having a girl….and now I couldn’t imagine life without her.

So…school.  We’ve decided to send the kids to a language immersion school to learn Mandarin.  They’re in camp at the school this summer and they both LOVE it.  They come home every day with new words, new songs, new friends.  J and I are so far extremely impressed with the school, the community, the education….we’re so excited we found this for our kids.

And, because that first slot has stopped moving, everything else can slowly fall into place.  The kids are in a great spot…they’ve got their groove on.  And it’s so wonderful to see after all we’ve been through.

As for J….well, he’s getting his groove on too.  I’ll write more about his marathon in another post (or, maybe have him write it? hmmm….) but as far as getting involved in the Denver community and finding a good job fit…well, it’s all there.  Now that my gregarious, outgoing husband is out from behind his desk and doing what he was born to do, his career path is bright and solid.  His “thing” this summer is golf and he’s taking full advantage of the Colorado summer to get out on the course and hack away.  Recently, he and I began a workout program called Insanity.  The workout is hard….insane, if you will.  But what’s truly insane is we get up at 5:30am in the morning to do it.  Crazy, right?  But, it’s been fun.  It helps your motivation when the person who’s sleeping next to you is pushing you out of bed when the alarm goes off.  It’s motivating to hear the huffing and puffing and under-your-breath swearing going on right next to you.  It’s an amazing way to wake up and keep your energy going throughout the day.  And, if NOTHING else goes right for the rest of the day, at least you worked out!  J and I end every workout high fiving and fist bumping.  It’s fun to have something new to do together.  And, boy, do we sleep well!

I know I was the driving force behind us moving to CO, but he’s certainly a willing participant.  He drank the kool-ade and we’re both loving living here.

And, finally, me.  Well, my slot is still spinning.  There are a lot of things that still need to be finalized before mine stops.  Things like finally selling our house in NC (we have a contract but it’s contingent on them selling their house).  Things like figuring out whether I want to/need to and can/can not go back to work full time.  And, what will that look like?  Where would I work full time?  Do I  formalize the contract/consulting I’m doing now?  Do I want to?  And, what’s best for my family?  For me?  So many questions.

But, that’s all really ok.  Because, I’m having the time of my life right now.  J and I have dubbed this summer the “Summer of MBA Mommy”.  I’m working part time and the kids are in camp all day.  I’ve got free time to do the things I want to do (yoga, blog, reading, writing, walking, seeing friends) and free time to do the things I need to do.  I’m making some money….not a ton….but not nothing either.  I’ve written before about wanting to Be Present in my life and I will write more about Finding Balance.  I feel that I’ve struck the perfect balance this summer.  Frankly, I feel like I’ve won the lottery.  Freedom during the summer in Colorado?  There’s not much more I could ask for….well, except for someone to buy our buyer’s house so I can stop my obsessive online house hunting and start for real….anyone in the market for a new house in Raleigh?  I know a GREAT one you could buy. 🙂

Because then? JACKPOT.

Posted in ASPERGER'S, AUTISM, MBA, ME, MOM, MRS | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments »

Fancy meeting you here

Posted by mbamommy on April 6, 2011

Well, hello again!  How have you been?  I’ve missed you.  I’ve been good…actually VERY good.  So good in fact that I completely ignored you. That’s such a girl thing to do, isn’t it?  When you’re down and out, you can’t get enough of your friends and you’ll chat with them til late in the night.  And, they’re always there for you, to listen to you vent with you, cry with you, laugh with you and share with you.  And then?  Things start going well again….you get another boyfriend or another job or another…whatever….and all of a sudden, you’re life is re-focused (or, in my case re- unfocused) and you find yourself thinking “Hmmm……I should really get in touch with my friends.”  But, you’re at a stop light and you don’t have your phone on you.  And you tell yourself you’ll write yourself a note as soon as you get home and then 5 minutes go by and you’re thinking about an entirely new topic until a week goes by and you think “Hmmm…..I should really get I touch with my friends.”

Oh wait…that doesn’t happen to you?  You ALWAYS remember your friends and never leave them hanging?  I bet you probably always have perfect hair and makeup, perfectly behaved children, a beautifully clean house and a wonderful relationship with your family.  Then, yeah, maybe I haven’t missed you as much.

BUT, if you’re like me (and I’m guessing that deep down you actually are), you’ll forgive my absence, welcome me back with open arms, and tell me how exactly you manage to look so gorgeous all the time.

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Posted by mbamommy on September 30, 2010

So, we’ve been here for about a month.  Things are slowly beginning to feel normal.  Sure, we do have our days (I had one yesterday), but I believe we are all starting to settle in and enjoy ourselves more.  I don’t have to use the GPS every time I get in the car and the kiddos are starting to ask for playgrounds by name.

And, the amount of errands I have to run are subsiding, which allows me to consider doing some more fun things with S while Z is in school in the mornings.  I happened to find a Groupon for the local Gymboree and thought that S may enjoy it.  I used to take Z to Gymboree before S was born and he really enjoyed it.  Granted, looking back now, it’s amazing to me how apparent the signs of Asperger’s were then…if we had just known enough.

But, I digress.  This post isn’t about Z, it’s about S.

We went to Gymboree this morning and she was in hog heaven.  I should preface this by saying she recently acquired a backpack (pink princess of course) because she kept wanting Z’s and we thought they should each have one.  This morning, before Gymboree, she tried to put the backpack in a cubby at Z’s school.  So, it’s readily apparent to me that she wants to go to some sort of school/class/kiddo interaction.

She was smiling, giggling, interacting with the adults, the kids, the puppets, the songs….everything (and everything Z never truly did at Gymboree).  I thoroughly enjoyed watching her enjoy herself so much.  But, I gotta admit, I felt a little like a fish out of water.  I mean, everything was so normal. Kids were playing…sometimes they needed to be redirected.  Moms were chatting, not hovering over their kids.  No one looked stressed….only a little bored if anything.

It made me realize how much both S and I need a little normalcy in our lives.  Where everything isn’t overshadowed by Z’s dominant personality and constant challenges.  I knew S loved running errands with me….she’d babble happily in the backseat, sometimes singing songs, sometimes *telling* me she’s happy.  So, I know she values the Moppy-time…..and I do too.  And it reaffirms my intentions to give her as much normalcy as her life will allow.  She loves her big bro so much and wants so much for him to be happy.  Wants so much for her Moppy to be happy.  It’s the least I can do for my little angel with a heart that’s bigger than her.

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Same Time Last Year

Posted by mbamommy on September 19, 2010

Right around a year ago, we were gearing up for Halloween.  Now, for most kiddos, dressing up and going door to door to collect free candy is an annual highlight.  Not ours.  Here’s the reaction we got when we tried to put S into a princess outfit.

I can’t show you Z’s reaction because we didn’t even get this far with him.  I mentioned here that we tried to force him into his costume: a flight suit custom made for him as a present from his aunt and uncle, complete with his own call sign (how cool is that?!) and all hell broke loose.  We realized we couldn’t try *that* again.

So, our next strategy was to go out and buy a new costume for him….one that he chose….maybe then he’d wear it.  Out we went to Target only to find slim pickings.  Anything he wanted they didn’t have his size.  Anything they had in his size, he didn’t want.  We finally settled on Superman pj’s, complete with a cape.  We figured if he didn’t wear it for Halloween, maybe he’d eventually wear it for bed?

Last Halloween all 4 of us stayed home.  S refused to touch her costume and went to bed as if nothing special was going on.  Z helped J and me hand out candy to other kids until someone came up in a scary costume and then he wouldn’t go near the door.  What did he wear?  You guessed it: jeans and a tshirt.

Fast forward to a year later and lo and behold:

Wanna know our secret?  Patience and understanding.  I showed him the flight suit and that was it.  We talked about it a little and then he ignored it.  The next day he asked for it.  And, he didn’t take it off for 2 days.  We get it now that we can’t force him into doing something. But if we make it enticing enough, he’ll eventually come to the decision on his own.

Oh, and the Superman pj’s?  They’re a staple.  He even asks us to sing the theme song as he runs around really fast so the cape looks like it’s flying in the wind.

As for little S, we haven’t found her Halloween costume yet but I absolutely guarantee you that if it’s all pink and girly, she’ll wear it til the cow’s come home.  And, she’ll walk around saying “I pretty.  I pink!” (note the sassy stance in the pic above).  My little girly-girl…..not sure where it’s coming from, I don’t have a girly-girl bone in my body.  Maybe she’s already rebelling?  *groan*

What a difference a year makes.  I have high hopes that we’ll get to go trick or treating this year. 🙂

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Posted by mbamommy on July 23, 2010

Before I get into this post, I’d like to express my extreme gratitude to everyone who’s read my blog.  And even more gratitude to all of you who’ve reached out to me either here or otherwise.  Your response is overwhelming and it makes me so happy I decided to write about our little Z-man.  It’s enormously therapeutic for me, especially knowing there’s so much love and support out there.  So, thanks.  And, please keep reading. 🙂

I need to take a brief break from telling our Asperger’s saga to thank J for being an ah-ma-zing hubby.  I mentioned I recently celebrated the 10th anniversary of my 25th birthday, right?  Well, I didn’t do the post script.  You see, around here, birthday’s aren’t just one day.  Especially when what you *really* want to do on your bday is only an option a couple weeks later.

See, I have an obsession with Rent.  Seriously, I *heart* Rent.  I honestly can’t get enough of the music.  I’ve seen it 5 or 6 times and have a tendency to listen to the soundtrack on repeat.  I think if I could marry it I would (sorry, J).  The good news is, J is *almost* as obsessed with it as I am….probably by osmosis….I’m a little leaky.

Aaaaannnnnyyyywwwwwaaaaayyyy.  The day Rent shut down on Broadway was indeed a sad day in our household.  I think I cried, but I could be making that up for effect.  But, it was sad nonetheless.  So, imagine my surprise when I heard an ad for it on the radio here in Raleigh, NC.  Really?!?  How could that be?  Who cares!  Let’s go see it!

“J, I know what I want for my bday.  And the whip cream on top would be if you planned the entire night out: babysitter, dinner, tickets, etc.”

Well, folks, my man came through.  Which was such a nice gift.  We always have wonderful date nights and he usually agrees with whatever I plan but he rarely takes the initiative in planning things.  Granted, that’s probably because I’ve wet-noodle beaten him into submission:

“J, what do you want to eat tonight?”  “

I dunno, MBA Mommy, what would you like?”

“No, honey, I don’t care.  you decide.”

“Ok, how about sushi?”

“Hmmm….I was thinking more of ordering a pizza.”.

Seriously, why do I even bother asking him if I already know the answer.  BUT, when it really matters, he knows how to deliver (ask me to post my engagement story sometime…’ll make the ladies swoon and the men complain they’ve got big shoes to fill).

But, I digress.

So, last Saturday night, as he planned, the babysitter showed up promptly at 5pm (us old folk get an early start for our big nights out).  I get dressed up in a cute dress and shoes and as we were walking out to the car…..huh?  J, why is there a big black van parked in our driveway? Oh, why, it’s your friendly neighborhood Gary-I Gotcha Taxi, of course.  Triangle peeps, this guy is AWESOME.  His FB tagline is, “YOU DRANK I DRIVE”.  He’s an upscale taxi service with a KARAOKE machine inside complete with strobe lights in sync with the music.  Best of all?  They have a license that allows you to have an open container.

OK, I’ll admit it.  We’re not *exactly* his target market.  I think he spends a lot more time around UNC, Duke and NC State campuses than up in the ‘burbs where we live….but how cool is that?  J not only planned this wonderful evening for us but he threw in a fun little surprise.

So, off to dinner at Second Empire we went with our mini-bottles of wine in hand (W.T., I know), where we had a fabulous dinner complete with Cakebread Chardonnay (my fav and too rich for daily consumption) and chocolate cake (see previous parentheses).  Then, back to our car service and off to the show.

Soooo…….the show.  Rent.  My favorite.  The show I can sing along to just about every word and I cry at almost every song.  Why, because it’s sad?  No, because the music gives me goosebumps (I cry when I get goosebumps?  Huh?).

The show was amazing, although I think the show would be amazing if I was watching The Chipmunks perform it (haha, just had a mental image of Alvin singing Maureen’s “Over the Moon”).  The music was the same.  The stage was the same.  The singing?  The dancing?  Well, I think it left a little to be desired.  I thought JoAnn, Maureen, Collins and Mark did a wonderful job.  But, I thought Roger, Mimi and Benny were lacking.  True, Roger and Mimi are huge shoes to fill but they’re also very important shoes.  And, Angel did a great job dancing but his voice just wasn’t there.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not complaining.  And I wasn’t disappointed in the slightest.  Both J and I simply noticed that we weren’t watching Broadway, that’s all.

Wanna know the best part?  J and I.  As far as we were concerned, we were the only ones in the world.  Well….us and Gary-I Gotcha.  With everything going on in our lives it’s truly wonderful to be able to escape with your plus 1 for a night and remember why you married them in the first place.

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Playing Favorites

Posted by mbamommy on July 14, 2010

I realized I’ve posted quite a few more pics of our “Lil Angel” S than of our “Wild Child” Z (ask J about that inside joke sometime).  So, in order to try to balance it out a little…’s one of Z that’ll solidify his teenage angst towards his Mommy (Yes, he’s reading while on the potty.  I think it’s SI).

OK, and just to prove I’m favoring S (at least in the # of pics I post on my blog).  Today was the first day I was able to put her hair into a “pony-tail”.  She giggled and posed for the camera all on her own….my little diva.

And for those of you who truly believe I play favorites, just wait.  There’s a doozy of a Z focus coming soon.  Just need to pull up my big girl panties and get it written.

In the meantime, pass along any cute and/or embarrassing pics of your kiddos.  I’d love to see them!

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What’s My Point?

Posted by mbamommy on July 9, 2010

A few days ago, I celebrated the 10th anniversary of my 25th birthday.  It just so happened to coincide with the 4th of July, so J got all patriotic on me.  What a nice guy!

(Side bar: Motivated Mom recently told me that while reading my blog she confused my mentions of JC (my husband) with JC, the Christian savior.  Yes, I did marry a Catholic man but no, I don’t sit around chatting with his son of God.  I am still a proud Jewish woman afterall.  So, in order to ensure no more confusion to my readers, JC will forever more be known as J.  And, while I’m at it, I’m switching up RunZMC to Z and Petite Syrah to S.  Call me lazy but that’s a lot less letters I need to type).

But, I don’t want to talk about my 10th anniversary.  What I want to talk about is my cleaning service.  I know, you’re probably sitting there thinking “Where in the world is this post going?  First she’s talking about anniversaries, then birthdays, then Jesus Christ and now her cleaning service? WTF?”  Stay with me though, I promise it’s all related….well….not the Jesus thing but I did preface that with a side bar (and italics no less!).


I’ve been a client of Carpe Diem Cleaning for several years now. Honestly, at first I didn’t think much of it.  I switched services because my previous one jacked up their rates.  I learned about Carpe Diem from a mailer that hada new customer discount coupon so I decided to give them a try.  I’ll be honest, I’ve been a pain in the butt to them.  I change times, freak out when they come too early or too late and Z or S are asleep, cancel at the last minute and forget to leave the key.  I think I’ve even threatened to leave a few times and they’ve always been able to pacify me with grace.  Actually, I need to give a shout out to Hannah Benfield, VP Client Relations, in particular.  She’s amazing.  She handles all inquiries, changes and challenges quickly and effectively.  And, she never seems to get her feathers ruffled.

In addition, they’ve never raised their rates and their teams do an incredible job (difficult in my house because of all of Annie’s dog hair. I swear I don’t know how she’s not bald).

So….I’m also a fan of Carpe Diem on Facebook and they recently ran a contest: submit a pic of how you spend your summers and you could win tickets to see the Durham Bulls.  So, I submitted this pic (wow, I’m kind of on a roll here) and promptly forgot about it.

Surprise, surprise, I won!  So, last Saturday night, J allowed me a girl’s night out with a good friend and we went to the Bulls game.  Complete with an air conditioned box right next to the press box.  We lost, but who cares!  The food was great, the folks were great and the fireworks were amazing.

But, that’s not the point of this post either (Seriously? When am I going to get to the point?).  When Hannah called me to let me know I won, I “let slip” that Saturday night was the ‘eve’ of my birthday.   I was curious to see if she picked up on the not-so-subtle hint and I figured they’d wish me happy birthday while I was there or something like that.  True to her title of VP, Client Relations, she went above and beyond with this:

I mean, here we are at *their* event, *their* night to say thanks to their customers and partners, *their* night to preview the commercial they did with Woll E. Bull, *their* 4th of July celebration.  And they not only make mention of my bday, but they light candles and a room full of strangers sings Happy Birthday to me while I blow the candles out.

Talk about recognizing the customer…..and I’m a pain in the butt one!

So, that’s what this post is really about.  Another example of how one company shows how they value their customer. (Told you I’d get there!)

Oh, and just to add on a little more praise for Carpe Diem: they’re super involved in the community (they clean it up, one might say *groan*), they’re a family run business that takes care of their employees, they do great work at a great price and they put their customers first with a personal touch.

So, a big thanks to Hannah, Wendy, Jessica and the rest of the team for making my 10th anniversary of my 25th so memorable.

And, to all of you out there, if you’re looking for an amazing cleaning service in the Triangle, check out!

Posted in MBA, ME | Tagged: , , , , , , | 5 Comments »

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