Early Morning Anxiety

Some days it takes all I have to get out of bed in the morning.

[Read more...]

Who Are You People?: A Search Terms Roundup

Reviewing one’s blog statistics can be a real ego boost (“Yay! Thanks for the ratings bump, Kevin Tydlaska!”) or ego killer (“Wahh! Did I weird people out by talking about my Daddy issues?”)

But mostly it’s just confusing. I have an MBA in Marketing and I still can’t figure out exactly who reads, why they read, and how they get here.

Despite my efforts, I can’t predict which posts will land, how many people will see my facebook links, or which time/day is best for posting.
[Read more...]

Project Optimism: In Memory of Twinkie the Cat

Twinkie “Twinkle Toes” Pinnella died on Friday, after bravely admitting defeat in his battle against inoperable abdominal cancer. He is survived by his parents, Gail and Ron, sisters Jill and Amy, and brother Oreo.

photo (4)

[Read more...]

I’m Going to Take an Annie Hall Quote and Make It Super Depressing

In a deviation from standard procedure, I’m postponing my Project Optimism post until tomorrow. For reasons that will now become apparent.

Yesterday, Tom and I watched Annie Hall for the first time. I know, I’m a comedy writer in New York and I should have seen it long ago. Mistake now corrected.
[Read more...]

Back Home Sitcom: Claire Danes Makes A Cameo

While staying at Mommy’s last week, we started binge watching Homeland. We’ve only just started Blizzard Nemo and we already have about a foot of snow outside. So, after about 4 episodes so far today…



Gail (Jill’s mom), Tom, and “Cutie” (Jill’s stepdad) watch TV. Jill carries a newly opened bottle of wine in from the kitchen. Cutie gets up to look out the front door. Twinkie the cat meows at Gail.

I just realized who Twinkie looks like!

Jill looks at her mom confused but intrigued.

Yeah, he looks like a cat.

No! He looks like Claire Danes!

Everyone laughs.

I’m serious!

You’re right! Why don’t you tweet it at her?

He does…

…or *Meow* it at her!

Jill laughs and high fives cutie.

With his big eyes and long eyelashes?

Yeah, okay…

And that confused look on his face?


Well, Claire Danes isn’t on twitter but here you have it. You be the judge.

totally looks like

totally looks like


Our Two-Timing Cat

One day, the neighbor’s cat wanted to come in our house. He didn’t ask, or anything, just shoved his little body in between Tom’s legs and the door. This was the beginning of our love affair.

Daddy said it was ok, so we started seeing each other a couple times a week. Despite his belonging to another family, what we have is real. He usually waits on his porch across the street and comes running when he sees Tom and me get out of the car. We’ve never fed him; he just comes over for lots of attention.

Daddy says his name (from the neighbors) is Fluffy. He’s the only cat I’ve ever met that comes when you call him.

(email readers click to the blog to see the video)

Finally, he worked up the nerve to get in our bed.

I particularly like this shot of the cat sleeping on Tom's PJs

…and made himself at home in Tom’s pajamas

I was sick today and Tom let him in the house before he left for work, so… we slept together. Like a typical philanderer, he was gone before I woke up. (Daddy had stopped home and let him out.)

It’s not the dream pet relationship that I wished for as a little girl, but as I’m a half-grown up right now, it seems to work well to have a half-cat.

Of course, the other day, Tom saw Fluffy coming from a different neighbor’s porch, so we might have to face the fact that our pet is three-timing us.

Project Optimism: Can My Dad Change?

Two weeks in a row of optimism on Mondays! Hmm, maybe I need to publish earlier in the day, so it can actually give you optimism before your Monday’s over? I’ll work on that.

I had not mentioned that last Sunday, the same day as the dust-splosion, the light fixture in our room broke, which further added to my frustrations.

All week we survived without a proper light. We found this weird spotlight-thing that we hung from our defunct light fixture, but it was super annoying because we could really only point the light in one direction at a time, and there was no switch for it.

weird spotlight thing

I think it’s made out of a re-purposed mixing bowl


I know this sounds like a petty complaint, but when you wake up in the pitch black at 6am, it can be a real bummer to have to feel around in the dark for the cord and the extension cord, and line them up properly, all before caffeine.

Daddy said he’d get us a new ceiling fan this weekend, but since the faucet is still not fixed, and his plumbing problems have resurfaced and remain unresolved, I was not holding my breath.

And then, get this, he did it. Yesterday, he went to Home Depot, bought a ceiling fan, and he and Tom installed it. I wasn’t home during the installation, but Tom said that during the process, Daddy realized he needed an extra part from Home Depot, and then proceeded to get that part, and come home to finish the installation.

where fashion meets function

where fashion meets function

Do you see what this means?? He started and completed a project in the same day. Only a week after the problem originally arose.

Maybe Daddy just has an easier time grasping lighting than, say, plumbing or cleaning. But maybe, just maybe, he’s improving? Maybe Tom’s efficiency is rubbing off on him? (That might be too optimistic. But still…)

For today, let’s celebrate this win. If Daddy can change, anything can happen.


Mommy’s House

Who can resist a look in someone else’s house? I used to live at street level on Mott Street, so trust me: no one. It was like living in a freaking store window…

My mom’s house is precious, as we say in my family. In fact, we say precious (adj.), preciousness (noun), or preciousing (verb).  As in: “Mommy is preciousing up her dining room.” or, the more general: “How precious.” (to be said in a mocking tone).

This is a good example of preciousness…


precious dolls and dishes above the precioused out window

Here’s the dining room…

And one of several wine racks….


ok, I bought the gourds so maybe I have a little precious in me
Living room…
still using the summer pillows – the winter pillows are much scratchier :(

The small but precious backyard…

the grill cover is Cutie’s

Plus her house comes with precious cats like this…


Or this….


Or these….

ok, so it’s the same two cats
Mommy’s house is my favorite place to be. It’s always clean and organized, and filled with good food and family and girly movies.

But now… we’re off to Daddy’s, which as we know from the preview is not so precious. To be honest, I don’t even fully know what I’m getting into. I’ll keep you updated.

The Cast

In case you don’t think like me for some reason (weird), you should know that I think of my life as a sitcom. Before I get any further into the story arc of this season, allow me to present the characters.

Main Characters

Jill (me) - Typical 20-something professional. I lost my burning desire to climb the corporate ladder a couple years ago but I work in a semi-important job to pay the bills. Like most people of my generation, I spend most of my time at work fantasizing about going back to college.

Tom (my husband) - A disillusioned chiropractor that actually is going back to college. But not in the fun way. Before he goes to PA school, he has to retake some of his prereqs from college because his credits expired (already? seriously?) so he’s the “old” freshman on campus. He goes to school 4 days a week and works 3 days so I should just stop complaining right now. But I won’t.

Daddy (my dad) - There is no need to give my dad a name other than Daddy because that is what he calls himself. Confused? You know the way a young father might talk to his two year old? “Daddy doesn’t like it when you bite me.” That’s how my dad still talks to me. “You know Daddy’s not big on birthdays.” But you gotta love a guy that loves his little girls that much. 

His house is a mess but he’s working on getting it cleaned up for us (at the last minute – wonder where I get it from).

Secondary Characters

Amy (my sister) - Amy has lived with us for the last 2 years in the city. She’s renting a room from a girl in Queens for the time being. I’m going to miss having her around but Tom will not miss her cat Frosty and her constant shedding.

How could anyone be mad at this face?
credit: Rae
Gail (my mom) - Pretty awesome mom. Retired, lives about one mile from my dad. It’s no secret that I wish we could live with her, but her house is smaller and fuller than my dad’s.
Cutie (my stepdad-to-be) - Ok, his real name is Ron but my mom calls him Cutie and then my sister and I started calling him Cutie too because, I don’t know, it’s cute. He and my dad kind of have an Ashton-Bruce-8-years-ago thing going on, in that they get along and both cook (occasionally together) for family dinners. As a divorced kid, this is the most one can hope for.

Recurring Characters

I don’t really know yet… my sister’s boyfriend Ben? My mom’s friend Aunt Kath that lives with her half the time? Maybe.

My friend Alice, who is also stuck living with her dad in Huntington? Definitely.

My in-laws, various Long Island friends of both Tom and me, my desperate alter-ego that attempts to manipulate a move back into the city? Probably.

Futon Week

And now…

The suckiest things about futon week (as it shall henceforth be known):

1- Having no TV in the living room. Don’t worry, I survived with a combination of Netflix and the TV in my bedroom. Close one.

2- The futon. It wasn’t so uncomfortable, but it was so not like a bed that I couldn’t sleep at all the first night and slept crappily the rest of the week.

3- Packed our curtains + position of the futon + position of the sun relative to the earth this time of year = sun directly in my eyeballs starting at 7am.

Doesn’t capture the true blindingness of it but you get the idea.

4- When my procrastination paid off and I had to stay up all night packing/moving, hopped up on Jamba Juice energy drink and Wendy’s iced tea.

5- I miss Frosty! (My sister took her to their new apartment.)