Where the Grown-Ups at?

I recently shared a meme on Instagram about how some days at work I just look around and think “where are the grown-ups? Do they know I’m doing this job? And for that matter, that I dressed myself and got here on my own today?” This stage of life is weird, I think. I updated my LinkedIn profile the other day to reflect that I now have 15 years of experience in my field. FIFTEEN. How did that happen? I can remember job searching in 2010 when I left the PR agency and wanting to apply for jobs that I wasn’t yet qualified for because they asked for 10 years experience, which seemed a lifetime away.

Despite experience and age, in the last six months I find myself starting over in a lot of respects and this time of transition gives me all the feels – of gratitude and reflection and clarity and loss and gain. I’ve changed jobs, left a marriage, had a major surgery that decided for me I’ll never have children, sold a “forever home” and moved into a city apartment. Started a relationship.

This week is probably the most still I’ve been in months – aside from being laid up after the surgery, which doesn’t count, because it was forced. I’ve come home from work every night to my apartment (which is a haven – I adore it) and have done whatever the hell I wanted to do. After weeks of busyness and travel and company, I’ve just…unwound. I’ve worked out every night (praise be! After surgery). I’ve done laundry. I’ve made easy dinners. I’ve taken a bath every night. I’ve read. I’ve binged Stranger Things. It’s been so good. Yet tonight I needed to not be here – a person can only take so much stillness. So I left my apartment to be around people, I think. Fiona only talks back sometimes.

I went to dinner at a place that I love but don’t venture to often because it’s a bit of a drive. I sat at the bar and ordered a glass of wine in my yoga pants and hair still wet from my workout. Shortly after my food arrived these two guys in their late 20’s came in. One asked if anyone was next to me. “Nope – all you.” They sat down as my food got dropped – “that is my favorite soup…” Me too, I said. The one closest to me, the soup guy, tossed his keys on the bar and his AA 6 month chip was facing me. “Good for you,” I said nodding at it. “Nah,” he said. “I give it back tomorrow at my meeting. Relapsed last night.” “Why are you in this bar today, then?” I asked. “That was 24 hours ago. There are meetings today. Sorry to be direct, but…” “Hi…I’m his sponsor. It’s OK. He called,” said the guy on the other side of him.

The three of us talked through dinner – his sponsor was in the midst of a nasty divorce. We talked about loss and solidarity and relationships and vices and feeling the feels and sitting in the quiet and the stillness and being OK with that. And moving on. And we talked about clarity and how when you’re looking up and not in that Jesus shows you things that you may not have otherwise seen. “Woke” – he called it. Yes, I said – woke, as the kids say.

A dinner with two strangers (and the bartender occasionally chiming in) was just what Jesus knew I needed tonight. That and that dang Tom Kha soup with chicken.

We rush to know the end of the story. It’s a byproduct of our conditioning and this world and it is so damn hard to sit in the stillness. We have to intentionally be still. And it is hard, y’all – to “be still and know…”

So yeah – where the grown-ups at? Oh God…what if I am one?


Last year, I was sitting at home watching the Tour de France and they kept showing ads for Peloton Cycle. It was this extremely fancy, gorgeous, indoor spin bike. I texted my husband, brother and dad and said “I might need one of these.” Plus, Peloton literally means “a group of riders – the head of the pack.” How cool is that? I love good branding.

Then I looked them up, considered the investment and didn’t think much about it for a long while.

Then, my fitness journey changed dramatically. I went to an indoor cycling class one month after that text and fell in love with indoor cycling. I also loved outdoor cycling, but if you read my blog, you know that a couple months later, that all changed.

After my accident, I knew during PT that cycling was going to play a major role in rehabbing my body. Running would be a ways off in my future, if ever really much again. Every physical therapy session started with the stationary bike. I sweated there, for the first time in a long time. The irony of it wasn’t lost on me. A bike got me on the couch, and a bike would get me off. My first time on the bike I still had my walking boot on. But the bike let me work again.

In fact, there’s probably some metaphor for life in here – something about riding a bike. 🙂

I started going back to those indoor cycling classes in the spring this year and getting my cardio back in shape. I kept loving cycling more and more – and I could DO IT. I had spent the previous 8 months or so discovering things that my body would not let me do or that would be different – harder, slower, more painful. Cycling on the other hand, I could do and do well.

Fast forward to June 2017 and the Peloton was back on my radar. Justin had just cancelled his gym membership because going there was torture – and not in a good way. I wanted the same indoor cycling experience I’d fallen in love with, but needed a new place to get it. Enter Peloton.

I ordered it on a Wednesday morning and by the following Friday two kind gentlemen were at my door asking where I wanted it set up.

Where I watch the sun come up, most days.

Not familiar with Peloton?

Here’s the deets:

Peloton is a top of the line, cutting-edge indoor bike, combining fitness and tech. Named “the best cardio machine on the planet” by Men’s Health; “The most impressive new fitness equipment I’ve tried this year,” says USA Today; and Forbes says, “Yes, you really can get a better-than-the-gym workout at home. It’s called Peloton.” Peloton is a relatively new company, but they are SLAYING it. I did so much research on this machine, y’all.

You pay for the bike, your shoes, delivery and professional set up – and it’s an investment friends. Trust me. But so worth every cent. (Side note – the indoor cycling studio I was going to was offering a one-time, founders package of $2,000 for a year of unlimited classes. Peloton was $1995. Boom, easiest decision ever. And, it’s 15 feet from my bed. And Justin’s using it too).

What I love about cycling classes is the energy – the lights, the music, the instructor, the stats, the leader board. With Peloton, you stream live (or on demand) classes from their NYC studio. They are teaching to a room of riders on site in NY, and streaming to thousands more. The instructors are the best you’ll find anywhere. They make you feel like you are sitting in the room with them. (My new life goal is to have my favorite instructor, Alex, give me a shout out at some point, as they often do to the “home riders” with birthdays, milestone rides, etc.).

The music is everything (and you ride to the rhythm, which is a must) – you choose Pop, Hip Hop, 90’s rap, Yacht Rock…literally there is anything you could dream of. Hell, they even do live DJ rides. There are a mere 6,500 classes to choose from last I checked. So you hop on the bike and press play on your favorite class. Even if it’s not live, the leader board simulates that you are riding live and gives you a ranking among the other thousands of riders that have taken that class.

On the giant touchscreen is your cadence (the instructor tells you how fast to go), your distance (I usually cover 12-13 miles in a 45 minutes class), your output/watts/power, your calorie burn and your gear (again, the instructor tells you a range to be in). All of this is archived on your profile so you can see it over time – how you’re improving, your PR, how close you are to beating your husband, etc. 🙂

Photo from pelotoncycle.com

Feel like you need something other than cycling, today? There are yoga classes, strength, core, arms, stretching.

I just cannot say enough about this machine, y’all. It met every one of my expectations and then some. For Justin, since he wasn’t used to the high octane, endorphin fueling workout that a good cycling class can provide, it’s absolutely blown his mind. He loves it. We have to coordinate schedules. Fortunately, only once have I come upstairs to find his butt in that seat when I wanted to be. I pouted. A lot.

Here’s a super awesome video of me giving you the tour of our Peloton. Click here to watch it. 

Still reading? Ask me for my referral code so you can get $100 off accessories – that’s basically free shoes. Comment here or find me at jwademccombs at gmail dot com.

How about some Q&A:

  • Where can I get more info?
    • pelotoncycle.com. Or message me.
  • How big is it?
    • 4’x2’ footprint. Checkout my video for some real life images.
  • What if it doesn’t work?
    • They offer a one-year warranty with the option to extend. Also, if you buy it with your credit card, check and see if your card extends the warranty period. Mine Southwest Chase Visa does by a year.
  • Is there a subscription?
    • Yes – $39/month for the classes – but that is good for every rider in your household, and cheaper than most gym memberships.
  • Do I need the shoes?
    • Yes, get them. Just do it. You’re already investing in your health this much – just get the shoes. And ask me for my referral code so you can get $100 off your accessories/shoes.
  • Is it loud? I need the music to be loud.
    • We bluetooth’d ours to the JBL speaker so we pump up the jams. Or, when I’m riding in the wee hours of the morning while Justin is asleep, I use headphones. But the speakers on the bike are surprisingly powerful.
  • Can I test it before I buy it?
    • There are a few showrooms across the country. Check out the website. Also, they are doing tours this summer – and they are here August 18-19 in Nashville. So, if you’re in town, let’s go!
  • Will my WiFi work to stream classes? 
    • Ours works awesome – but we have a pretty serious WiFi plan. They say most plans/speeds work on the Peloton website. Check it out for more info. They even have a tool that lets you check the speed of yours. I imagine you’ll be fine, like us.

So really, you can probably tell how obsessed I am with this thing. If you have more questions, please ask. Go forth and ride, friends.

This was not a sponsored post. All views expressed here are mine and were not prompted by anything other than my love for this product. 


Meet Princess Fiona Kitten Pants

If you’ve visited this blog more than once (OK, maybe even just once), you know I’m a crazy cat lady. I just friggin’ love a cat. They are insane and so conniving. What’s not to love? And if you knew my Callie Cat girl, you know I have a heart for even the meanest, weirdest ones. Callie was special – feral and wild. But I loved her and she loved me. We bonded over a lot of ups and downs through 10 years together – and no matter what, we had each other.

Since Callie passed in October, I have been a bit hot and cold about another kitty. I finally decided I’d wait until I moved into the new house in November – but then I got the cat lady itch real bad. No, not like allergies – like, I wanted another one.

Justin and I looked off and on for a few months. Then a few Saturdays ago we got serious about it. It’s kitten season, after all. (I don’t even know what that means – I guess every spring/early summer cats just start breeding like mad, because there are kittens everywhere. All the shelters are just overrun with the little darlings).

We went to a place in Spring Hill where there were some real sweeties, but I just wasn’t feeling the strong connection. We moved on up to the Williamson County Animal Shelter, filled out an application (which you have to do to even hold a kitty) and started our search. (Actually, I walked straight in the door, opened a cage and grabbed a cat out and a lady said “you can’t do that. Have to have an application. It stops the spread of disease.” First, WTF. Second, WHERE DO I SIGN. I’m serious kitten huntin’).

After our application process I immediately picked a kitten I wanted to hold. It was so cute and right in the front door when you walked in. We took it to the kitten room where it can get down and run around with you – but it was weird. Sorry cat. It just wasn’t the right fit. I knew we needed one with personality (duh, see Callie) and one that could hold its own against a Golden Retriever at home. This one was terrified of most things, it appeared.

I put it back and went to another room and AHHHHH KITTENS. This is where they stash ‘em. They were EVERYWHERE. Like 5 to a cage/crate. Justin and I were immediately drawn to this one little furball in a cage with three other black males. She was calico and so beautiful. We got her out and took her tiny butt to the kitten room. She was rambunctious but also sweet and purring up a storm. She seemed to love human touch – weird, having known only Callie who would rather claw your eyes out than be picked up by a stranger. After a couple of minutes we just sort of looked at each other and smiled – “I think she’s the one,” I said. He said “yep – what’s her name?” Fiona.

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The past 15 or so days with her have an been adjustment. I forgot what it’s like having a kitten at home. (Read: pouncing on face at night and midnight and 3 a.m. feedings). And turns out, Fiona was only 6 weeks old and not weaned from her momma yet. So it was a little touch and go at first to get her to eat. We ended up bottle-feeding for several days, then she ate wet food for about a week, which makes for a REAL party in the litterbox. Imagine, wet cat food on a brand new stomach that’s never had such delicacies. Needless to say, just like a real baby, Fiona had several blow outs and got several baths. Ever bathed a cat? Yeah, keep it that way.

We are so in love with this little one though – she is growing like a weed and we wish she’d stop. She was 1.6 pounds when we got her and is now a little over 2. So she’s still just about 8 weeks old. She is in love with her doggy sister and wants to be ON HER all the time. Dixie cooperates and tolerates, bless her sweet heart.

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More crazy cat lady posts to come, you can guarantee it.


It’s Not that Hot Out

Last Friday I was meeting a group of friends for happy hour. My friend DJ and I got to the bar/restaurant, so very pleased it was Friday and ready to have a craft beer. We parked off a busy four-lane street and when we exited her vehicle, we both heard a dog barking. It was odd, because the street was so busy. About three cars down, there was a dog in a car, windows cracked maybe an inch. It was a furry little schnauzer thing and panting hard. It was 4:30 and probably 85 degrees out.

I looked at DJ like “are you kidding me right now?” I then looked around – as if someone would be standing there holding a sign that says “here stands stupid. It’s me. I’m the terrible person.”

DJ said, “you’re going to do something aren’t you…” more of a statement than a question. Yep. I have to.

The bar we were headed to was in a strip mall – so the car was right in front of a restaurant. I went in and asked the hostess if she knew whose car it was. She said she thought it was “that table’s” and pointed to a couple of girls. She went over and asked, they nodded, and the hostess flagged me over.

I went over to two girls in their early 20’s. I said to one “is that your silver car?” She said “yes.” I said “that’s your dog in the car?” She said yes. I said “do you know how hot it is outside today?” To which she replied…

“It’s not that hot.”

I’m pretty sure I took a step back. Are you serious? Are you friggin’ serious.


I said “Well. Either you can go outside and start your car, blast the AC and leave it running while you enjoy the rest of your meal. Or I’m calling the cops.” She looked at me and scoffed like ‘for real, cray lady?’ I said “so…?” She got up with her keys.

I held the door open for her and said, “I’m going to this bar here, next door. I’ll be out every 15 minutes to be sure your car is still running.” She said “Ok.”

And I did – I went out once more, looked at her through the window of the restaurant and put my hand calmly on the hood of the car to be sure it was running. Pup’s ears were happily blowing back in the AC. When I went out the second time, the car was gone.

What I should have said is, “listen turd. I’m going to put this fur coat on you, then you go sit in the car with the windows rolled up while I eat this ramen. Then you tell me if it’s really that hot today or not.”

Good news is, the Good Samaritan Law, which allows you to break a window from a car if you see a child trapped inside on a hot day, is being extended to protect animals in TN effective July 1. If it had been two weeks from now, I may have just waltzed into the restaurant holding that dog and said “is this yours?”

Article about the new law: http://m.wcyb.com/news/new-law-for-rescuing-pets-from-hot-cars/33534632

This is eye opening:

dog in car

So basically, that pup probably felt like it was 119 degrees. I could smack that girl – still, right now, it makes me so mad. But as my good friend DJ said, “just as there is no test for people to breed, there is no test for people to own animals.” Sad, but true.

Do your part if you see this happening this summer. Stand up for those little critters that can’t stand up for themselves.


Life after 30

My brother called me on my 32nd birthday this past Sunday. He was like “do you feel any older?” Without hesitation I said YES because it seemed like the right answer. But quickly I was like “NOPE. Actually – I am healthier and more active than I have been in years. So no, I do not feel older. Oh but I did hurt my ankle running…probably brittle bones…they say that happens. So, no and yes.”

32 is going to be the best yet. I’m sure of it. I know what I want – and thanks for 14 or so years as an adult, I know what I don’t want. (Can I get an amen?)

I read this list recently about “10 things you need to quit doing right now to be happier.” I wish I would have saved it. If you Google this, there are a million lists but none are the exact one that I was reading. So here’s my own summary of the ones I remember.

  • Being around negative people
    Oh my stars – isn’t this profound. We can’t control who we are around all the time – i.e. at work – but in our personal lives, there is absolutely no reason as adults that we have to put ourselves through relationships (beyond the general courtesies) that don’t enrich our lives. I’ve realized this recently – and have the dearest friends ever because I chose them. Fate, luck, divine intervention, etc. brought us together – but we CHOSE to stay together because we give each other what we need and want. We enjoy it – plain and simple. But from time to time, you encounter people that you just think “yep – not forcing myself through that again.” And guess what, you don’t have to. You’re a grown up. Do what you want. Be around who you want. This is not elementary school and you do not have to play with that brat on the playground.
  • Saying yes all the time
    I was a yes girl. I used to say yes then figure out how I’d get it done, later. Or commit to something then whine about it until it was over. Well, why the heck did you agree to do it if you’re so tortured about it? The slogan should be, “Just Say No: to drugs and other crap you don’t want to do.” Unless it’s a professional development opportunity, YOUR JOB, school so it will better your long-term future or something like that – just say no if your heart isn’t in it. Again, like above, if it doesn’t give you something back, why give it all of you?
  • Choosing things over experience
    I feel like this shifts drastically from your early 20’s to 30’s. I would spend my last dime to travel or eat somewhere amazing. But that amazing pair of shoes that cost half my paycheck? Eh, take ‘em or leave ‘em.
  •  Comparing yourself to others
    Lawd, social media is the devil when it comes to this. Because we only see all the sunshine and roses – not all the trips, falls, bumps and bruises. But at some point (late 20’s or early 30’s?) you just have to do you and not try to keep up with the Joneses. It will drive you insane. I’m the guiltiest for posting every fun moment on social media – so this is a work in progress for me. (I think there was a related topic in here somewhere about just living your life instead of documenting every second. Shocker).

Anyways, my point with this is, you really do sort to turn a corner on these things and so much more around 29-something. The best is yet to come – right? Isn’t that what they say? If so, bring it on, 33. (Er…wait. Maybe just let me savor this one a little bit longer).

Thanks to everyone for all of the well-wishes on my extended birthday extravaganza. I felt every one of them and all the love.

Disclaimer – I realize in 5-10 years I’ll look back on this post and realize I still knew nothing about life. That’s just how it goes. 😉

sinema linds

Summer Sweet Tooth

Now that summer is fast approaching, I’m starting to pull out all the favorite seasonal recipes. I served one when I hosted my Book Club girls earlier this week and plan on making the other this weekend.

Post-Whole 30 and with this new, lighter Jenn, I’ve been satisfying my sweet tooth in healthier ways, and these recipes are perfect for that.

Grilled Peaches with Mascarpone and Honey

You’ll need:

That was easy, huh?

Slice the peaches in half, remove the pit and place cut-side down on a medium-temp grill. Just kind of keep an eye on them — 5ish minutes or so until they get some good grill marks and start to warm through. I’ve never really timed it. Use tongs to turn them over.

Now, you can go ahead and take them off if you want, but I like doing this next step on the grill. Just depends on how OCD you are about keeping your grill clean.

While mine are still on the grill, spoon in some mascarpone (or to be honest, I like goat cheese, as well – and it’s a lot easier to find) into the center of each half. Then drizzle the whole peach with honey. Close the lid and let them hang out just one more minute so the cheese gets gooey. Serve immediately while still warm.

If you follow the link to the photo credit below, she bastes hers in honey butter. Get it, girl.

peaches - foodiecrush.comphoto credit

Watermelon, Feta and Herb Salad

This is the one I made for book club the other night. It is so good!

You’ll need:
3ish cups of diced, seedless watermelon
8 oz. block or container of feta cheese
A good handful of fresh mint and basil

I used almost a whole one of these little guys from Kroger, each for the Mint and Basil.

Fine chop your herbs, crumble your feta and toss it all together with the watermelon. Salt it to taste. That’s it. Serve immediately. We ate the leftovers the next day as well – but that was about as long as it’ll keep. The cheese starts breaking down and it’s just weird. So fresh and summery, though.

You could get crazy and squeeze a lime on it. Maybe drizzle with EVOO. You could make a dressing with a little honey, EVOO and lime juice. But it’s good enough as is.

Photo credit

There you go — two perfect recipes to accompany your Memorial Day grilling extravaganzas. Happy summer, kittens.


Wade Beach Trip – 2015

Last week marked possibly my favorite week of the year – Wade family beach vacation week. My parents discovered Destin, FL when I was a toddler. It was still a sleepy Gulf of Mexico fishing town in the mid-80s. (No, that’s not a typo. Shut it). And it’s just been our spot ever since then. Now it seems like everyone knows about and loves Destin – so we’ve pushed our family vacations till just before peak summer season to avoid the crowds and rental rate hikes.

I can’t tell you how much this week means to me. Now that Josh has his own family (who knew a 17 month old person needs double the luggage of two grown adults?), we rent a big house so we can spread out a bit. It is just glorious. Vacations look a little different – waking up at 6 a.m. because there is a toddler pacing outside your door, going to dinner in shifts – but this vacation was the best yet. It’s so fun experiencing everything through my nephew’s eyes. Not to mention getting to hang out with those other people I love so much.

As usual, I cried a little when we left. Health and family – the two things in life that are such a deep blessing and we should never take for granted while we’ve got them.

Now here’s some vacation eye candy for you. Most taken by my fabulous sister-in-law, or at least her fabulous camera.

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Until next time, Wades! Love you all so much.


10 Years in Music City

It’s true what they’ve all been saying – time really does fly. I blinked and somehow I’ve been in Nashville 10 years.

Of course when I reflect on all that’s happened in those 10 years, I pick out certain moments and think “that was a million years ago,” – but for the most part, it’s flown.

I’m sure I’ve told this story before here on the ol’ blog – but on May 7, 2005 I walked across the graduation stage at the University of Tennessee with a BS in Communications, ate lunch with my family and drove straight to Nashville. I had an apartment leased and a job lined up. Like, a legit PR Account Exec. job at a firm.

I was making 24K a year. I remember that distinctly. In one of my senior Public Relations classes they told us the industry average for new grads was 22K, so I was basically rich. I thought I might as well get it in cash every two weeks, fill up the bathtub and roll around in it. That’s how huge this was for me. My apartment rent was $525. BALLIN’. (In six months it got broken into – so the low rent and crime could correlate).

I also was too naïve to know to ask for a reprieve between graduation and beginning work for the rest of my life – but hey, I just couldn’t wait to make that gravy, mentioned above. So, I graduated on Saturday and started work on Monday. The rest is history.

Somehow, overnight, I went from this:

Phi Mu phi mu 2

To this:


Ok — not really. There was quite a period of transition in there. 😉

Since moving here in 2005, I’ve lived in SEVEN places in Nashville. I will assume my 8th residence this November. Maybe I’ll stay in this one for a while since I’m buying it. (More on that in another post).

I’ve only had three jobs in 10 years, which I guess seems like a lot or not very many depending on the generation you ask.

Sometimes at work, in organizations I serve with, etc. I look around and think “you people really trust me to do this?” But dang – I’ve been at it for a solid 10 years now. Guess it’s time I give myself some credit. It’s just insane to think about how much things change and how quickly. How did I go from an intern to an Assistant Account Exec., to a Sr. Acct. Exec., to a PR Manager to a Sr. Marketing Coordinator? I feel like I just blinked. (there were about a million steps in between, mind you).

One thing that hasn’t changed though – my love for this city. Nashville is changing like a fart in a whirlwind. It’s hard to keep up it is moving and growing so quickly – but all for the better. I love this place.

So cheers, Nashville. Here’s to at least another 10. Or 50.



Called Out by a Four-Year-Old

Yesterday I went to a Super Bowl party at a coworker’s house. Several of us from work were there, and one lovely lady has three beautiful kids who were FAR more entertaining than that catastrophe on the television. (We still love you, Peyton. VFL).

Baby girl, we’ll call her, is 4 years old going on 25. I think she is smarter than some adults I know. She learned everyone’s name and had hilarious things to say all night. She always addressed us by name, then went on with her story. Example – “JENN – did you know that I went to my friend’s birthday party and she had a cat but I never saw the cat because it was hiding?” “Chip – your real name is Jesse? There is a Jessie on Toy Story 2 but she is a girl and you’re a boy.”

By the end of the night we thought we’d heard it all, but turns out she’d waited to drop her best work on me as I was walking out the door. I packed up and was headed out, leftovers in hand. Then this happened:

Jenn: “Baby girl – it was so good to see you.”

She takes her eyes off the iPad, reaches for my hand and holds onto it.

Baby girl: “Jenn, where is your husband?” Oh goodness.

Jenn: “I don’t have a husband.”

Baby girl: “Oh. Why not?”

Jenn: “Well, because I make poor life choices.” (I’m of course being a bit dramatic, yet honest – seeing where she’ll take this one).

Baby girl ponders on this for a minute while I say goodbye to a couple more people.

Baby girl: “Jenn….Jenn.” Pulls me in closer to her – and real serious, real concerned, she says, “Why do you make bad decisions?”

The whole room is now focused on and slapping their knee at this conversation and I can hardly look her in the eye for giggling. She is so sincere and so adorable and the question sounds so simple. Why DO you make bad decisions, Jenn? Just stop it.

Jenn: “Well, I’m trying to figure that out.”

Her Mom said, “Baby girl – you know how sometimes you do things that you don’t mean to and you wish later you hadn’t done them?” Yes, she agreed. “It’s kind of like that.”

Baby girl turns to me with a solution. I can tell a light bulb has just gone off.

Baby girl: “Jenn! You can marry my BROTHER!! He’s really handsome.”

Normally I would have accepted on the spot – but baby boy is two and a half. Baby girl had been saying all night that SHE was going to marry brother – and they would skip off to the other room. “Going to get married!” Then come back, happily married.

So, this was a HUGE gesture on her part. Very selfless. I told her that was so sweet and I really appreciated it.

She thought some more and said, “Or, you can marry me!” Oh my.

Jenn: “Well, that may be the next thing I try….”

Kidding. Only kidding.

From the mouth of babes, right? It was a good moment of comic relief but also a reminder of how black and white it can all be – especially in the eyes of a child. Don’t have a husband? Made some bad decisions? Here, marry this one? He’s cute, so that’s easy.

Oh baby girl – stay so innocent, or at least so smart and witty, always.


The Time I did Judo in Sephora

I went in Sephora over the weekend, which means I was in Green Hills Mall on a Sunday afternoon. There are so many things wrong with that sentence already, I know. I was asking for it.

First thing first. I decided to fuel up on Starbucks as soon as I walked in the door, where I had to have a conversation in line with an old lady about personal space. Before you go thinking I’m picking on my elders, please understand that she literally had her boobs pressed into my back she was so close to me. I just politely turned and said “ma’am – would you like to go ahead of me? You seem to be in a hurry.” I fully expected her to mistake me for a smart aleck young whippersnapper and realize she was standing ON ME – but no, she just said “Oh thank you hun. That’s so nice.” Geeze Louise. She stepped around me to assault the girl in front of me. That minor setback was worth having her set out of my back, though.

After I got my Chai Tea Latte I headed for Sephora. I was on a mission for this particular lip balm that I had already researched and learned they carried. I NEVER go near Green Hills Mall without a set agenda and a clear, decisive mission. I park nearest to the entrance with the store I am seeking and am in and out in under 15 minutes every time (unless the Apple Store counts). Malls with stores like Tiffany, Louis Vuitton, Burberry, Tory Burch, etc. are no place for me to be browsing. Clear mission – target identified – execute – retreat.

I walked into Sephora and was not immediately swarmed by the sales staff. This is different. So I did a quick lap and did not see the lip balm. Dang it – I’ll have to ask someone. Of course, the one time you NEED help is when all 38 associates are busy.

Finally, near the “beauty bar” or whatever the makeover counter is called, a woman dressed in all black (slightly different from the other associates) asked if she could help me.

“YES – thank you. I am looking for Dr. Lipp’s lip balm.”

“Hmmmm. I don’t know. I don’t actually work here. We’re here with Dior. (she nods at her twin Dior-mate standing there).”

I know this trap. I once got suckered into trading my paycheck for some Tarte concealer just because their “rep” was in the store that day.

Red alert – retreat, retreat.

I backed up one foot into an actual Sephora sales associate. Dior #1 said, “This nice lady can help you.”

I was sweating for sure, by now. (Sweating is my reaction to almost every situation ever, but especially this one).

“Hi – I’m looking for this Dr. Lipp lip balm. Do you have it?”

Looks at my sample quizzically – “no – we don’t carry that.”

“Oh weird — your website says you do.”

“Well, sometimes we have things on the site that we don’t have in stores.”

I fully believe she just wasn’t familiar so that was going to be her go-to answer. But, nevertheless, I had to get out of there. No time to argue.

About that time Dior #1 speaks up and says “wait – what do you like so much about it? OUR lip balms and glosses may be just what you need.” Dior #2 nods enthusiastically.

“Oh, no thank you. I’m pretty devoted to this stuff. I’ll order it.”

And then the unthinkable happened. I went to step away, to the door – and Dior #1 grabbed my forearm in a firm wrist/arm lock, gave me a pull back toward her and said “WAIT. Just talk to me. TELL ME what you like about it.”


Before I knew it I was executing a move similar to this one.


Ok, it wasn’t THAT cool – but I instinctively did some twist move that wrestled my arm from her grip and left me holding HER arm, at a 90 degree angle while she yelped with surprise.

Dior #2 said “OH MY GAWD!”

I said “don’t touch me. And I don’t want your $50 chap stick.” (hit her where it hurts).

And I walked out before they could call security.

What the heck. What is wrong with people? I don’t know where they were “in” from – but you don’t go grabbing on people in the South, sweet pea. You’re lucky TSA took my taser. Bless your heart.

Next time, you get the Judy Chop!

In other news, I ordered the dang lip balm off the internet from the comfort of my own home, which is what I should have done in the first place. But then, I wouldn’t have this blog fodder.

Jenn Wade School of Self Defense and Smack Talk for the Elderly, coming soon to a run-down Wal-Mart shopping center near you.