let’s talk about metaphors, coffee, and the meaning of life. Sort of. [video]


Some times you just need to break the ice, here I fumble through live storytelling and make it to the end without picturing my audience naked. This is progress! A silly story turned around that comes out with a moral – how we get there is anybodies guess.

Welcome to the way I think, the way I talk, and how I live write my life for most anyone to see. This is what I do: i tell stories.

hello again. from jodimichelle on Vimeo.

My favorite part is when I finally bail and admit the awkward. There’s no rhyme or reason for this video. No real point, other than – hey! I think it’s fun to talk to people. Maybe I’ll start talking (literally) to you more.

Also, sometimes I forget to lighten things up around here and I really don’t have pure angst in my life, there’s a lot of silly, fun-loving memories to talk about too. I am completely capable of making a fool out of myself, I do so willingly. I think it’s fun (woo!!!) not to take this all so seriously. And I forgot that for a time, that while I was living my dreams and building my dreams – I could also … wait for it … still dream.

I’ve been thinking about my Life List and how completely motivated I was by that – how so much happened in such a small amount of time. I wondered where that fire went? Where did the big idea, huge impossible dreams turned reality girl go?

She started journaling about coffee.

And then she started talking.

I was at the edge and I jumped a little.

I’ve been reading the amazing links circulating on how to survive summer vacation. That used to be a terrible thing to admit to myself, “surviving” anything with my kids. Because, duh, I’m a mom! Like rainbows and Care Bears and Cabbage Patch Dolls all day long! Breasties! Stroller walks and photos! DID YOU SEE WHAT MY KID DID?

He pooped, ok? By himself. I didn’t need to wipe an ass, finally.

Maybe it’s because this is my 8th summer. I was hoping I’d never get to this point in parenting, where I was all “YEA GIRLFRIEND! I’M WITH YOU ON THE HATING OF THE THINGS!” But alas, I’m in pre-teen land with one of my off-spring and Dear-God-Why-Aren’t-You-In-School-Full-Time with my other.

I love them a lot. Like, the rainbows part? That’s true. They’re ridiculous fun and lift me up and out of things they didn’t even know existed. All I have to do is wake up and show up – it’ll be a great day. However…

Their laughter used to be medicine for a weary soul. I made it today because my kid fucking laughed! (That happens.) And now their noise, any of it, is like finger nails on a chalk board. You would think I had 10 children and an amplifier with which I speak to them. Because the noise? It’s louder and faster and definitely more aggravating than the 150 decible bass vibrating your entire car in rush hour traffic in the middle of Chicago.

Who keeps Tylenol in business? Moms. That’s who.

You’d think I would just send them outside: I do. They always come back to me crying and bleeding. A+ parenting, friends. A-PLUS.

Take them on a bike ride! Go to the beach! Do anything outside of your house!

Yea, I got that. I do, I will, we’re on it. But then, and hi, you adorable naive (don’t worry, it used to be me) new mom. Or Aunt. Or estrogen pumping species: they bicker. Like, they hold the Olympics of bickering and whining and not getting the thing they wanted screaming contests.

It’s adorable. You should see it.

Except, no.

And yes, I did just spend 12 entire days with them on vacation. A lot of those days were in the car all together. All the time. I drank a little, to be honest.

Maybe thats why I need a break so bad? Because the last month of school is really just a marathon of parties and things to do and committee meetings and signing up for more meals somewhere and at one point I spent all our grocery money on other families and totally forgot we needed to eat, too. That’s a thing right? Eating?

Those last few weeks of school aren’t really the basking in the fact that you have a few more weeks to “get things done” it’s more like I have zero time left to mentally prepare for what is about to explode in my house in just days. Good thinking on the teacher’s planning: Make all the work at the end of the year. Keep them delirious as to what’s coming. Sugar them up! Give them all our leftover paper! Everything they touched must go with them so their mother will have to deal with it!

And like a rookie I signed up for it all.

Then I booked a week and half long vacation (by car. take a moment here, say it again. BY. CAR.) 48 hours after the end of school and today is my first official Monday of Summer.

We went to pick strawberries! Someone probably got a concussion! There was laughter! Their chore charts are filled out and functioning! They have VBS to look forward to! Friends and neighbors to play with! ISN’T THIS THE BEST????

Why do I want to cry?

the mechanic

Oliver and his trucks

Our car has been to the mechanic often lately. Both of them, actually. Our wallets are not too happy about this but we have amazing mechanics and love that we always feel comfortable bringing our cars to them. Probably because neither of us are self-proclaimed car people. We just, I mean. They’re cars.

We’ll change their oil and clean their carpets. I’ll even be sure to rotate the tires and name mine … but I don’t care about my car too much. It’s a thing. I also don’t care about your car – that’s another thing.

I care about old Ford Pick-Up’s and my very first car. Otherwise? We’re pretty clueless about them.

I’ve spent some quality time in the lobby of our mechanic’s office recently and it got me thinking – with all the rearranging of schedules and phone calls and whatnot … there are days that our mechanic knows more about my daily life than my husband.

Can’t come in today, threw my back out.

I’m the helper in my sons classroom, after that?

Kids are off school right now, next week?

I guess this could be considered chit-chat, something I am terrible at. Is this small talk? Am I now making small talk with our mechanics?

Or am I just that girl who is awesome at the awkward conversations?

What happens when …

You’re on a hike on the last day of your vacation and it just dumped snow in the mountains? Or when this said hike takes place with signs ALL over for Bear Activity. And you see 8pt Buck’s on the trail who look amazing and not daunted by your standing 20 feet from them?

Nature is ridiculous. And being left to my own devices in nature? Also ridiculous.

Boulder, Co Day 6

Aaron and the kids were talking about bears and OH MY’s! when I kind of went off the map for a bit there – totally ignored by my family I entertained myself with my camera.

This can also be chalked up to: Jodi embarrasses herself for your enjoyment. Although, honestly, I’m not embarrassed. I’m also no actor – this is just me.

Boulder, Co Day 6

Being slightly dramatic. Which is rare, obviously.

Boulder, Co Day 6

It’s colder when you’re not moving your legs and carrying 30 pound children up a hill, by the way.

Boulder, Co Day 6

That’s my cold face.

Here I am double checking to make sure I’m still only performing to an audience of trees. And deer.

Boulder, Co Day 6

Which I was.

Boulder, Co Day 6

And that some how made me feel giddy. I’m so dangerous.

Boulder, Co Day 6

What?!?! No, I am not taking photos of my self in rapid succession. Thankyouverymuch. Look away, Aaron.

Boulder, Co Day 6

He makes a joke, I laugh. It’s what we do.

Boulder, Co Day 6

Then I cry for help. SOMEONE GET ME OUT OF HERE.

Boulder, Co Day 6

Zoolander comes for a visit.

Boulder, Co Day 6

And we end on dramatic surprise pose.

Boulder, Co Day 6


Who wants to go hiking with me? I promise I’m not high maintenance but if you give a mouse a cookie … Jodi’s gonna want to take your picture.

These photos brought to you by “Being the photographer on vacation” and “Hiking on a mountain is effin’ awesome”.

Most embarrassing conversation. Ever?

Last week I promised that if the world did not end (surprise surprise!) I’d tell you about an embarrassing conversation.

For more frequent updates like that one lets be friends on facebook, mkay?

It all started when we were on a playdate Friday morning and I had a ladies issue that needed attending to. Excuse me, dear readers: I am going there.

I did not have the equipment with me that was needed. And if we’re going to be talking about this then we’re going to be talking about this. I needed a tampon.

My girlfriend happened to have some in her purse, albeit very old ones. So I took the plural “light days” applicators with me to the bathroom and whatever. Magic happened, ok?

Ladi-dah. All is well. Playdate is wonderful. I’m always slightly blonde and foggy-headed so ok, no big deal. I apparently don’t bring feminine hygiene products with me anywhere I go.

However, and this is where it gets awkward, upon returning home it happened to be time to visit the rest room and switch things up a bit. And lets just say I didn’t get a full refund.

Folks: I was certain there was a tampon stuck. In there.

What the? What do I do?

Immediately I start thinking of Danielle whom I had the humorous pleasure of hearing first hand about how she went through a similar situation when I was at BlogHer Conference 2009.

I knew I didn’t want to wait days and days or do anything while my 50% off coupon was floating around my uterus so I decided I should just call my OB. It happened to Danielle, so of course, this has to be kind of a normal thing.


Ring Ring. Ring. WayTooLongOfARecordingForAnOB’sOfficeGreetingMessage

Beep. (That’s me pressing 4.)

Dead silence. No music while on hold. Only the echo of my mind going “When they answer you just have to be honest. Say “I think I have a tampon stuck” and let them ask the questions … over and over again.

PhoneNurse: Hello?
Me: Hi, my name is Jodi and I’m pretty sure I have half a tampon stuck … um … inside. You know. There.
PhoneNurse: Half of one? What were you doing?
Me: Yes, well. Nothing. Just routine maintenance really. It was an older tampon I used in an emergency but only half of it came out.
PhoneNurse: That’s almost impossible!
Me {thinking}: Of course it is! Why yes, yes it would be an almost impossible situation that I would be in this circumstance.
Me {actual talking}: Oh. Well I guess this stuff just happens to me? What do I do?
PhoneNurse: What’s your DOB.
Me: {gives info}
PhoneNurse: Is this Jodi???!!! Jodi?? This is Sarah!
Me: Yup, yeah. This is Jodi. Sarah?? Oh hi! Sarah from highschool! Hey! Hi! Yeah, how are the kids? Oh wow! So weird that you’re the one who answered my call! Huh heh. Heh …. ha….. ha.
PhoneNurse {Now Sarah}: So funny! Yeah! Well we can get you in to see the doctor, want me to get you an appointment?
Me: Yes, lets just do this.

They got me in to see the doctor within the hour, only I had my kids with me … still. So I quick called my mother in law who was very willing to watch them while I took care of this as soon as embarrassingly possible.

Doctors Visit:

Hi Doctor I’ve never met before. You’re younger than I was envisioning. Oh, yes. Please. Let’s shake on it. OK, hi.

You’re absolutely right. I’m embarrassed about why I’m in here. Can you please say it out-loud a few more times? “Getting a tampon stuck.” “I see many women with the same question or fear.” “Sounds like you came in right away which will save you from infections and {very disgusting descriptive words about symptoms} …” “As an OB this is one of those problems that easily solved, I love these problems!”

Awesome. Explains the career path, bringing life into the world aside, you must be very good at what you do. Hows about we just get this over with?

Oh, you need a nurse in here for this? Of course you do. Please get ANOTHER witness to this situation. I would LOVE that.

Nurse enters, we “solve the problem” and then the nurse says – Sarah {PhoneNurse} wants you to stop by her desk before you leave.

THANKS, NURSE, FOR THE MESSAGE!!! It’s like my own personal assistant following me around.

I was relieved to have lived through all of this for the YoungerThanExpected Vagina Doctor to be all: Nope! No tampon in here! Let’s get you dressed so you can go see your friend EXCLAMATION POINT EXCLAMATION POINT.


Thank you? Thanks. I, uh. Well, good then. You’re sure? The rest of my body can’t swallow things right? I’m not going to have weird stomach pains that turn into an emergency x-ray showing I have a weird formation of cotton floating around, right? Don’t answer that. I’m choosing to believe you. You seemed thorough enough.

Nurse, where’s PhoneNurse-Sarah’s desk?

M’kay. Alrighty then. Wonderful. Bye!

No worries, dear friends, it was great to see Sarah again. Caught up on her beautiful family, assured her I was A-OK and made tentative plans for some coffee. She has my number.

It will be nice to be the one on the other end of her phone next time šŸ˜‰