Thursday, October 2, 2008

For Chanda

My five-year old students are
learning to read.

Yesterday one of them pointed at a
picture in a zoo book and said,

'Look at this! It's a frickin'

I took a deep breath, then
asked...'What did you call

'It's a frickin' elephant! It says so
on the picture!'

And so it

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Take A Look At My Puppies, and other stuff


Yesterday was Mischief & Mayhem's 5-month birthday. It was also the day I took away their manhood. Yep, they were neutured. They are doing really well and I don't know how I'm going to be able to restrict their exercise and movements for the next 7-10 days. The boys act like nothing happened and are still try to play rough house. Oh, Mayhem is the puppy with the one ear up, one ear down. Chances are that his ears won't stay that way but we are secretly hoping they do. It's such a cute look for him.

Counting down the days to our yard sale. Most everything is priced and I've managed to borrow a couple of tables from co-workers. I have to pick up a couple more from my folks, and my hubby has to get a few from his boss's church. Tomorrow I'm going to the newspaper office to place the advertisement and I have to make and put up signs. We are keeping the girl home from school Friday to help us. I know, I know - bad parenting, right? Please keep positive thoughts that the rain stays away and we have a successful turnout so that we make lots of money. It's for my boys fence, you know.

Trying to reconnect with my brother. I've managed to go visit him 2 Sundays in a row. It's been nice. Of course, this last visit I managed to piss my mother off with a comment I made about her getting Alzheimer's. She said it hurt her feelings. Long story short is that if she brings up the subject again to me, I've got a few things to say to her that I didn't feel the need to repeat in front of an audience.

The Elections stuff - I'm really not happy with either of the candidates. I don't want to NOT vote so it's looking like it's the lesser of two evils. Now I just have to figure out who that is. So many things about the candidates and their VP choices scare me.

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Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Hurrican Ike's effect on my neck of the woods

Copied from an email I sent to my friend on Monday, 9/15. Sorry for being so lazy but at least I'm admitting it, right?

Well my area got some of the rain from Ike yesterday. We had a ton of rain in a short amount of time. Winds were up to probably 45MPH. But the rain wasn't huge stinging drops, it was more like misty rain if you know what I mean. We lost our power around 7:30 a.m. and it came back on around 9 a.m. Something that never occurred to us while our power was out was our sump pump. After the power came back on, I went downstairs to my basement to start a load of laundry and saw streams of water in my laundry room floor. Then I flipped on the light in the main part of the basement where there is indoor/outdoor carpeting and all of Dean's fishing equipment, a couch, TV, couple of chairs, and the furball, and I all of a sudden noticed the carpet was squishing. All the water that the sump pump would normal keep out of our basement, seeped up through the floor! The sump pump has been working over time since then and we've been vacuuming up the squishy water out of the
carpeting, and running fans to dry things out. Dean moved our DE-humidifier out of the furnace room and put it in the carpeted area. We also had a tiny leak in Gabby's room right where the sewer trap comes out on the roof and water came out of the ceiling fan. I think it was blowing rain so hard that water came through the vent on the side of the house and it blew down through the fan. The fan was completely dry and the ceiling too. Only evidence was a wet bed spread. So, even though what happened to us is NOTHING compared to the Texans, it hasn't been fun to deal with.

So yeah, that's what happened to us. Three days later and even with running the humidifier and fans, my basement is starting smell. Dean thinks it's the smell of rabbit pee but my nose knows the difference between rabbit pee and wet basement. Ugh!

Friday, September 12, 2008

Excuse me for being gone so long

Once again I have fallen into the habit of being a shitty blogger. What can I say - I've just had too much going on (not necessarily blog-worthy), to keep up. Yet, I still manage to read my favorites. I always have time to read you all. What's been going on, you ask?

1) The pups. We are slowly but surely coming along with them. I'm working on almost 2 weeks of not getting up in the middle of the night to take them out to potty. MIL told me on Labor Day that they should be old enough to hold it so we began that night. There have been less than a handful of accidents, never poop, and I'm okay with that. I wish I could say I'm back to my old sleeping habits but I'm not. I mean, it's definitely better but I still wake up every morning around 3:30-4:00 a.m. and toss and turn until my bladder says, Help! or my alarm goes off. Then by the time I take them out, feed them, and take them back out again so they can poop, because breakfast is a trigger for them, I've got something knocking at my back door and it's time for me to do my morning constitutional. Sorry for the TMI but it is what it is. Our next goal is to work on getting them to let us know they need to go out when we have them in the house with us. Boy! Is that a tough one. Trying to figure out normal puppy sniffing from hey I've got to shit/piss has been fun (NOT).

2) My girl has been back to school for almost 4 weeks now. She seems to be loving the 6th grade. Long gone are the days of no homework on Fridays though. She's been lucky up until now. There have been a couple of issues where she forgot an assignment that was homework. We gave her one oops and then a couple days later she forgot an assignment again, she lost her privilege to play with her friend after school/homework done and checked. Consequences for her actions, ya know. Otherwise, homework time hasn't been too bad. In the past, she and I have had some battles on it and Dad has had to take it over. Usually, I have absolutely NO patience when it comes homework time. She's been pretty cooperative. So far.

3) We decided that we have a lot shit to get rid of and that we are going to have a yard sale. Going through our things and figuring out what we wanted to get rid of, I finally decided that I'm getting rid of all my baby stuff, maternity clothes, etc., and the proceeds will go toward putting in a fence for our pups. Even though I finally came to terms with myself that I'm never going to have another baby it was really hard for me gathering it all together. I broke down and bawled hysterically during the process. I had sent G upstairs to get a large garbage bag for me, she couldn't find where I told her they were at, so I started up the stairs to get it myself and ran into her coming back down stairs. She was all alarmed at my state and asking me what was wrong. I just waved her off because I couldn't talk coherently. I think D told her because when I came back down, she came up to me and gave me a huge hug and kiss. There are a couple of things I will pull out as keepsakes for G but the rest is going. Of course, I've had more than a few people tell me that as soon as I get rid of it all, I'll get a huge surprise. I hate to tell ya, but that kind of stuff doesn't happen to me. I only read about that happening to other people.

4) So have any of you ever been in a situation where you've always been the better friend to your friend? That's me in a nutshell. I've had the same BFF for the last 21 years and we've been through a lot. But the most common theme in our relationship is that I've always been the better friend. I honestly don't think my BFF means to be such a shitty friend but you know what, I'm finally at my wits end and have decided that she can be the one to call me. I'm done calling her. The last time I've spoke to her was the day after we got the pups. I haven't heard shit or shinola from her. Oh, I take that back. My ILs ran into her Labor Day weekend at a block party and she was all, Yeah, I really need to call Susan, and get down to see her puppies. It's just that I've been so busy. Typical excuse that I'm sick of. I actually think I'd be more depressed about this if I didn't have my other friend to talk to. The thing is is that I've never actually met her IRL. I "met" Marsha through an online parenting community we are members of, and we took the plunge maybe 6 months ago and started calling one another. She is usually the one to call me because she has Vonage and it doesn't cost extra, but if we aren't talking on the phone, we are emailing each other. She lives in Texas and I'm in Illinois. One day, I will meet her.

So that's pretty much it. We are having some signs that Autumn is on the way. Yay! It's probably my favorite season. All the orchards around my area reported excellent apple crops so I'm anxious to go apple picking and all the baking that goes with it.

I wish I could say I'll do better with this blogging thing. I've said it before and look where it got me. I hope my little audience that actually reads me understands that I'm a better reader/commenter than blogger.

Monday, August 18, 2008


Now that we've had the pups for 3 weeks, I can finally say I am starting to relax a bit. The first 2 weeks was not pretty! Hell - after 4 days I was ready to ship the scoundrels off. I was about to lose my mind. A lot of it had to do with not getting serious help from my hubby, Dean. When I had my mini nervous breakdown, he realized he'd better get in gear and start helping more. Once we started confining the pups to one room (the kitchen) when not in their crate or outside in the makeshift pen we put together, things started getting a bit calmer. However, during this time my appetite had gone to shit, my stomach was constantly nauseous due to stress, and I wasn't sleeping worth a darn. I think I lost 5-7 lbs. One hell of way to lose weight. It was also at about 2 weeks that I asked Dean if he thought we were making any progress on the house breaking. He pointed out certain things that the pups are starting to get and that it was not going to happen overnight - we have to break the bad habits and that they have to learn to hold it. After being told by several people that it was going to take time and not happen overnight, I started feeling better. Our girl has been such a big help. I'm really proud of her stepping in and not complaining about getting up during the night with me to take the dogs out. Last night was the last time though because she starts back to school tomorrow. I'll be glad when we are finished with all of their shots. Owning two dogs is quite expensive. They have to go back one more time to get their final shot and then I need to take them back to be neutered. I was going to take them to our local spay clinic but they aren't making appointments until September 2nd for November! I can't wait that long. I wish I could because $90 for 2 dogs as opposed to $270 at the veternarian's is really sweet. One thing about the vet's office is that they do give them a shot for pain when they wake up and also send home pain meds but the spay clinic does not. Enough of about the puppies.

Yes, G starts back to school as a 6th grader tomorrow. I can't believe my girl is starting middle school! She gets a locker this year and of course, we had to buy stuff for her locker - magnetic dry/erase board, magnetic mirror, and a something that can hold bits and pieces.

Finally, we finally have more signs that my girl is starting puberty. Over the weekend she started complaining about her boobs hurting her. I asked her if it felt like she had knots and she said yes. She also said they hurt if she barely bumped them and/or the water from the shower beat on them. Then last night she as she got out of the shower, she called me upstairs and asked if it was normal for her nipples to turn red. They weren't red per se but you could tell that they were darker. I confirmed to her that yep, it was totally normal. So yikes! My baby is starting the process of becoming a woman. *sniff*

So that's my update. Boring I know but I felt like I should give one. It's so easy to be a lurker and I really don't want to fall into that trap again. I plan to update this blog a bit more now that I feel like my life isn't in such a turmoil anymore.

Monday, August 4, 2008


I've been a sucky blogger the last few weeks. I don't really have much of an excuse for the first 3 weeks but for the last week, this is why I've been absent:

It's been exactly a week since we adopted these little guys and I'm walking around in a sleep loss induced haze that is making me feel like I'm stoned, my stomach is constantly nauseous due to the puppy shit smell that has invaded my nasal membranes, and I swear if I don't end up with a nervous breakdown, the only thing good coming from this crazy ass idea of ours is that I will have lost some weight. I have little to no appetite. Hell of a way to lose weight. The house training of two puppies with a protozoa in their intestines has not been fun. I can't really blame them - they can't help it. But I just want to snap my fingers and have my puppies house broke. So, please excuse me while this never had a dog person in her life before, TRIES to adapt to owning 2, count them 2 West Highland White Terriers, Mischief & Mayhem. I will continue to be mostly absent in my posting but not reading of blogs. Please PRAY for me because I REALLY, REALLY need it. In the meantime, email me if you have any experience in house training 3 month old puppies. Please and thanks.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

His ears must have been burning

My hubby must have known I was bad mouthing him this morning because he called me within minutes of my bitching to a friend/co-worker and now I am feeling shameful.

Back story is that my MIL called me the other night to invite me to go to Hermann, MO's Stone Hill Winery with her, FIL and another couple on August 9th. When we were in Chicago, we were talking about how much fun we had the last, and only, time we'd been there, back in the Spring of 1992 (not married quite a year to her son). So the opportunity came up and she instantly thought to invite me. Well the problem, if you want to call it that, was that hubby works Saturdays and I needed to figure out child care for our girl. I knew this but when I told hubs about the invite, he snarkily says to me, "You know I work on Saturdays so who are YOU going to get to watch the kid?" I, of course, told him to not worry about it because I'd figure out something. I always do. 'Cause you know that is MY job. I figured I ask my parents. It would be sucky for the girl because it would mean I'd have to get her up at the ass crack of dawn to take over their house but if that's what I had to do, so be it. I was planning on asking my mom today or tomorrow about it.

The reason I'm feeling shameful - he called me to tell me that he put in for a vacation day so I could go! He said it was time for him and the girl to have a daddy/girl day together. I hadn't asked him to take a vacation day because he usually gives me grief when I ask him to change his schedule for me. I know I gripe about him a lot and sometimes it seems like all I have to say about him is negative, but it's little things like this that reminds me why I'm still married to him after 17 years. I really am lucky. Of course, in his usual pervy fashion, tells me that I can pay him back by letting him bring another woman to our bed so she can be the menage to our trois. The ass! LOL!

Daddy & his girl

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

So What Have You Read

Please forgive me for stealing this from a favorite blogger of mine. The Big Read (a program of the National Endowment for the Arts) guesses that the average adult has only read six of the top 100 books on this list. I really do love to read and I thought found it interesting just how many I've read and/or started/in progress. The majority of the classics I've read, I owe to my 11th and 12th grade English Literature class teacher, Mrs. Rita Weiss.

1) Look at the list and bold those you have read.
2) Italicize those you intend to read. (I'm including any books I've started but haven't finished.)
3) Reprint this list in your blog so we can try and track down these people who've read 6 and force books upon them ;-)"

1 Pride and Prejudice - Jane Austen
2 The Lord of the Rings - JRR Tolkien
3 Jane Eyre - Charlotte Bronte
4 Harry Potter series - JK Rowling
5 To Kill a Mockingbird - Harper Lee
6 The Bible
7 Wuthering Heights - Emily Bronte
8 Nineteen Eighty Four - George Orwell
9 His Dark Materials - Philip Pullman
10 Great Expectations - Charles Dickens
11 Little Women - Louisa M Alcott
12 Tess of the D'Urbervilles - Thomas Hardy
13 Catch 22 - Joseph Heller
14 Complete Works of Shakespeare
15 Rebecca - Daphne Du Maurier
16 The Hobbit - JRR Tolkien
17 Birdsong - Sebastian Faulks
18 Catcher in the Rye - JD Salinger
19 The Time Traveller's Wife - Audrey Niffenegger
20 Middlemarch - George Eliot
21 Gone With The Wind - Margaret Mitchell
22 The Great Gatsby - F Scott Fitzgerald
23 Bleak House - Charles Dickens
24 War and Peace - Leo Tolstoy
25 The Hitch Hiker's Guide to the Galaxy - Douglas Adams
26 Brideshead Revisited - Evelyn Waugh
27 Crime and Punishment - Fyodor Dostoyevsky
28 Grapes of Wrath - John Steinbeck
29 Alice in Wonderland - Lewis Carroll
30 The Wind in the Willows - Kenneth Grahame
31 Anna Karenina - Leo Tolstoy
32 David Copperfield - Charles Dickens
33 Chronicles of Narnia - CS Lewis
34 Emma- Jane Austen
35 Persuasion - Jane Austen
36 The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe - CS Lewis
37 The Kite Runner - Khaled Hosseini
38 Captain Corelli's Mandolin - Louis De Bernieres
39 Memoirs of a Geisha - Arthur Golden
40 Winnie the Pooh - AA Milne
41 Animal Farm - George Orwell
42 The Da Vinci Code - Dan Brown
43 One Hundred Years of Solitude - Gabriel Garcia Marquez
44 A Prayer for Owen Meany - John Irving
45 The Woman in White - Wilkie Collins
46 Anne of Green Gables - LM Montgomery
47 Far From The Madding Crowd - Thomas Hardy
48 The Handmaid's Tale - Margaret Atwood
49 Lord of the Flies - William Golding
50 Atonement - Ian McEwan
51 Life of Pi - Yann Martel
52 Dune - Frank Herbert
53 Cold Comfort Farm - Stella Gibbons
54 Sense and Sensibility- Jane Austen
55 A Suitable Boy - Vikram Seth
56 The Shadow of the Wind - Carlos Ruiz Zafon
57 A Tale Of Two Cities - Charles Dickens
58 Brave New World - Aldous Huxley
59 The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time - Mark Haddon
60 Love In The Time Of Cholera - Gabriel Garcia Marquez
61 Of Mice and Men - John Steinbeck
62 Lolita - Vladimir Nabokov
63 The Secret History - Donna Tartt
64 The Lovely Bones - Alice Sebold
65 Count of Monte Cristo - Alexandre Dumas (en francais)
66 On The Road - Jack Kerouac
67 Jude the Obscure - Thomas Hardy
68 Bridget Jones's Diary - Helen Fielding
69 Midnight's Children - Salman Rushdie
70 Moby Dick - Herman Melville
71 Oliver Twist - Charles Dickens
72 Dracula - Bram Stoker
73 The Secret Garden - Frances Hodgson Burnett
74 Notes From A Small Island - Bill Bryson
75 Ulysses - James Joyce
76 The Bell Jar - Sylvia Plath
77 Swallows and Amazons - Arthur Ransome
78 Germinal - Emile Zola
79 Vanity Fair - William Makepeace Thackeray
80 Possession - AS Byatt
81 A Christmas Carol - Charles Dickens
82 Cloud Atlas - David Mitchell
83 The Color Purple - Alice Walker
84 The Remains of the Day - Kazuo Ishiguro
85 Madame Bovary - Gustave Flaubert
86 A Fine Balance - Rohinton Mistry
87 Charlotte's Web - EB White
88 The Five People You Meet In Heaven - Mitch Albom
89 Adventures of Sherlock Holmes - Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
90 The Faraway Tree Collection
91 Heart of Darkness - Joseph Conrad
92 The Little Prince - Antoine De Saint-Exupery (en francais)
93 The Wasp Factory - Iain Banks
94 Watership Down - Richard Adams
95 A Confederacy of Dunces - John Kennedy Toole
96 A Town Like Alice - Nevil Shute
97 The Three Musketeers - Alexandre Dumas
98 Hamlet - William Shakespeare
99 Charlie and the Chocolate Factory - Roald Dahl
100 Les Miserables - Victor Hugo

Thursday, July 10, 2008

I need to take up a hobby

For all the internal bitching I do about needing some alone time with the hub, I'm missing my girl terribly. I need a hobby. One that I can stick to. There is just 2 more days and she'll be home. The child free week has NOT been sex filled. In fact, Mother Nature showed up on July 4th. Since she left town, we've hooked up twice. Oh well, at least we got to do it in our bed without the fear of getting caught. Yes, even though our girl is 11 and knows that mommies and daddies have sex, she does her darnedest to keep her parents from enjoying each other.

Also, this week has just been absolutely awful on my sinuses. I've had a nagging sinus headache I'm so sick of it! I can't take the OTC sinus medications because of my high blood pressure. As one of my doctors said, I have to just deal with it. All I can say is that thank the good Lord above that I've been pretty immune to colds for the last 7 years or so because that Coricidin HBP stuff they have out there on the market doesn't do shit! I tried it once for what I thought was a cold, turned out to be allergies, and it did nothing for me.

Oh well, life will turned back to normal come Saturday afternoon. When I start complaining about my drama queen again, remind me of this post, will ya?

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Child-free Week

This Saturday G leaves for 7 nights, 8 days with the ILs for their annual Lake of the Ozarks trip. Woo hoo! This is the longest time she will be away from us since she was 2 1/2 when we went to Puerta Vallerta.

You know what this means don't you? D and I will actually get to enjoy our "alone" time in our bed instead of the living room floor. And there is potential to make it last longer than 10-15 minutes because we aren't having to worry about her walking in on us. We also will get to catch up on watching all the inappropriate movies that she can't watch AND go to a couple of restaurants that she doesn't like because she is such a picky eater.

She told me last night she was getting nervous about being gone for so long away from us. That trip we went on when she was 2 1/2? Well, let's just say we had some abandonment issues with her that took us almost a year to figure out why she wouldn't stay overnight with grandparents or her Aunt Di Di anymore. That lasted until she was around 5 and then we had a relapse again at age 9. She went on an overnight school field trip without me and she got freaked out. She still won't go spend overnight at friend's houses and only has stayed overnight at ILs house twice since that time. Well, I assured her she was going to be fine because she was going with grandma and grandpa, who would spoil her and she was going to get to swim everyday, etc. I'm keeping my fingers crossed that she doesn't get too homesick. I don't think she will but my girl has a tendency to over think things before they happen and worry about potential bad things and then she gets a pleasant surprise when it didn't turn out as bad as she thought. Up until it happens, she drives me bat shit crazy about it!

So the husband and I get to relive the days of what it was like before we had a kid. While I'm looking forward to the break, I know that I'll miss my smart-mouth, drama queen, baby girl.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Finally, Chicago trip details, and one other thing


Chicago. What can I say other than we had a blast! The above picture is one of G on the Architectural River Cruise. You can see all the other pictures here. I took loads of pictures of the displays inside the Field Museum and Shedd Aquarium as well as buildings we saw on the cruise. Two and half days is definitely not enough time to see and experience all that is Chicago!

Our flight took off at 11:55 a.m. You'll see in the first picture of my photos that G wasn't looking very happy about flying. By the time we got up in the air, she was all smiles and admitted that old mom was right, flying isn't so bad. :-)We took the orange line elevated train through the city. It was amazing to see just how close some of the trains come to the buildings! From there, we hopped on the red line subway train to the Grand Ave. stop. Our hotel was one block to the left and 2 blocks down the street on Ontario, right off Michigan Ave. As per usual when I plan a trip, even to St. Louis, there is always a glitch. I had a typo when I googled the directions to the place we needed to pick up the GoChicago discount cards. I put in South when it should have been North. It took us in opposite direction all the way at the other end of Michigan Ave. Where we needed to go was only within 3 blocks walking distance from our hotel. It was nice that none of us got stressed and whigged out over it as would have been the case if D was with us. By the time we got the discount cards, it was 5ish and we were all starving balls. We ended up at a Thai restaurant, called Dao, for dinner. They had reasonably priced and good food. We all liked it except for G. Pad Thai is nothing like Lo Mein. We ended up stopping at a Starbucks right across the street from our hotel for a coffee and I bought G a turtle brownie. It was still pretty early in the evening so I suggested going to see a movie at the Loew's theater. We saw Kung Fu Panda. Yawn! I was really disappointed in it. Jack Black is a favorite of mine and I thought it'd would be funnier. I ended up taking a cat nap during it. So did my mom but that's nothing new because if she sits still for more than 10 minutes, she falls asleep.

The next day we got up and went to breakfast at Viand which was in the Marriott across the street from our hotel. Very good food but very expensive. Then we headed out to catch the 146 bus to the Museum Campus. Like the day before, we messed up when we hopped on the 146 bus and took a very scenic drive down Lake Shore Drive. I finally asked the bus driver if we were on the right bus to which he said no. We got on the wrong 146 bus. So we waited about 15 minutes for the right one and wouldn't you know it, our stop was at the very end of the route. I won't bore you with the details but we were able to go to all the places I had planned - Field Museum, Shedd Aquarium, and the Architectural River Cruise. We ended up taking a river taxi from below the Shedd to the Navy Pier so we got to ride on Lake Michigan (Shoreline cruise without the narration). The Architectural Cruise took right an hour so we were done by 5 p.m. We walked a couple blocks to catch a bus back to our hotel. Realistically we could have just walked from Navy Pier back but my poor mother doesn't move quite as fast as she once did (arthritis in her hips). We cleaned up and walked back over to the Loew's movie theater and went to dinner at Heaven on Seven. Very yummy! Kids' menu was on $5.95. My mom and MIL were tired so after we dropped them off at the hotel, G and I set out to walk down Michigan Ave. in search of a Walgreen's to pick up cheap souvenirs for us.

Wednesday we got up and walked a couple blocks to the Corner Bakery and Cafe for breakfast. We walked over to the Eddie Bauer and did a little shopping. I got me a couple pair of nice slacks originally $49 a pair for $15 a pair. Rock on! I usually can never find bargains for my size so I super pumped about it. Because we couldn't find anything in G's size that I wanted to pay for, we dropped my mom off at the hotel and my MIL, me, and G, headed back down Michigan Ave. to the Macy's. We immediately saw the Lush shop and stopped there. G was able to get her another Happy Pill and grandma paid half for some shower jelly. By the time we got back we had to head back to hotel to pick up my mom and the luggage and go to the airport. We all pitched in and took a taxi. We just couldn't fathom doing the EL route all over again.

I will definitely go back to Chicago. I grew up in the 'burbs/country and thought I would never say this but if I was young, single, childless, I could definitely see myself living there. No way in hell I'd have a car - public transportation all the way for me. Anyway, I am hoping that I can work it out to make Chicago an annual mother/daughter trip. I had that much fun.

Lastly, this past Sunday, June 22nd, D and I celebrated our 17th year of marriage. I complain about him a lot but like Dana at said better than I ever could, "I believe in two things: that there is that one person out there for everyone, your soulmate; also that one person who is the only person that can put up with you for all your life."

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Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Chicago trip details

To my small number of readers, I promise I will post about my Chicago trip before the week is out. Stay tuned . . .

Friday, June 13, 2008

Let the count down begin

Well, we are now 2 1/2 days away from our mother/daughter trip to Chicago. Me, G, my mother, and my MIL are heading out Monday, June 16th, and coming back Wednesday, June 18th. I think I'm all ready to go. I have completed the following:

1) airfare tickets bought and paid for
2) hotel room reserved
3) CTA's 3-day unlimited passes bought and paid for and in hand
4) gochicago discount cards bought and paid for but not in hand

I'm just going to drive over to one of the off-site airport parking lots and leave my car. It'll be much easier that way and I won't have to worry about inconveniencing anyone to take us to and pick us up from the airport. I think one carry on bag will be plenty for a 2-night trip. Our flight is scheduled to take off at 11:55 a.m. We are going to take the EL from Midway airport to our hotel. Since I waited too long to purchase the gochicagocards on line in time to have them mailed to my house, I will be picking them up at one of their offices. I will be making the long walk from our hotel on E. Ontario St. to the 500 block of N. Michigan Ave. Or I might hop on one of the buses. Either way, I'm going to get everyone checked into the hotel room and head out on my own. I think if I go by myself it will be much quicker if I'm not having to wait up for other people.

My plans are for us to go visit Navy Pier and walk around and then go have some dinner. The next day I'm hoping we'll be able to take one of the Architectural River cruises and go to the Shedd Aquarium and the Field Museum. I guess it all depends upon how long the lines are at the Aquarium, as to whether we'll get to do all three attraction. I don't know if we'll have time to do much on Wednesday before our flight leaves at 1:55 p.m. I suppose I better look into what our hotel's check out policy is first is first.

The nervousness is starting to subside and I'm starting to get excited. G is being her usual nervous nilly. She is still anxious about the airplane trip. I keep reassuring her that everything will be fine but I know until she experiences it, my reassurances mean nothing to her.

Anyway, I plan to take lots of photos. Let's just hope they turn out worth a shit because so far half the pictures I've taken go into the trash bin on my camera. I know they say practice makes perfect but it's not like I can retake them if I mess up.

Please keep some good thoughts that we have nice weather and that my husband doesn't worry too awful much about his girls. I know that those of you that read this pitiful blog of mine are probably thinking, Geesh! It's just Chicago!, but I'm not a world weary traveler. The last time I went more than 3 hours away from home was this time last year to Paducah/Bardwell,KY, when my sister was so sick. The furthest I have ever been from home was 8 years ago when we went to Puerta Vallarta, Mexico, for a week. I'm really a homebody so this a big trip for me and Gabby. My mother for that matter. She's never been to Chicago either. Hopefully, this will be the first of many mother/daughter trips to come.

See ya'll when I get back!

Wednesday, June 11, 2008


1-year old

11-years old

Happy Birthday Gabrielle Justine! Her 11th birthday was actually yesterday, June 10th, but we were out on a small, private lake, where I out fished everyone the first hour we were there. Hence the reason I didn't get to post this until now. We celebrated her birthday with the family on Sunday, June 8th, by going out to dinner at one of our local Mexican restaurants. Their tradition is to sing Happy Birthday in Spanish and then smash fried ice cream in the birthday boy/girl's face. This was the whole reason she picked this restaurant to go to. Why anyone enjoys that I'll never know but then again, I'm getting old so I don't enjoy stuff like that.

Before I started reading blogs, I used to think I was pretty good with the written word. Boy - what a wake up call I had on that! So instead of writing a long and drawn out ode to my girl, I'll just leave you with the above photos.

Friday, June 6, 2008


Picture 039
Originally uploaded by sltbee69
As promised, here is a picture of my girl the day after the braces were put on. She looks happy there but she really is in pain.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Does anyone want my husband?

Does anyone know how to get stain off vinyl siding?!?! Please tell me there is a way. Please. Bear with me because there is a lot of foul language coming. I was steaming last night and I'm still pissed this morning. I have to get this out so I can move on.

My fucking idiotic husband decided he was going to start staining our front porch yesterday afternoon. Because he can't be bothered with taping things off and having a wet cloth on him, he slops fucking stain on the house where the banister butts up against it. Yet when I say something to him about it, he has the audacity to get pissed at me because I should be kissing his ass that he actually decided to get off his fat, lazy ass and do something on the house!!! He acts like it's no big deal because it's in an inconspicuous place and only he and I will know it's there. This was one of those times that I just wanted haul off and smack him upside the fucking head!! I told him specifically on Sunday when we picked up the stain that we were going to have to be extra careful applying it around the house. No, I stressed it emphatically. But it apparently went out one fucking hairy ear of his and out the other fucking hairy ear!!! This is why even though I bitch that I have to beg him, no nag him, to do stuff around the house, that I really rather do it my damn self. If he's going to do things half-assed then I don't want his gd help! Never mind that when he decides to do something, it takes him at least twice as long because he's got to take fifty million smoke breaks and sit and think about how he's going to do it. Agh!!!

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

VBAC hooray!

My mother informed me that the hospital she works for is going to start allowing VBAC . I'm so excited because I really do believe the c-section rate is ridiculous and there are too many unnecessary c-sections being performed. Of course, the way my fertility is, I'll probably never get to experience it but I am so excited for anyone who desperately wants to do this. Woo hoo!

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Brace face follow up and holiday weekend was bust!

Well, we had about 3 days of tears after the braces were put on. The feelings she described to me, I remember all too well. For instance, alternating between feeling like all of your teeth are loose and then a feakishly weird tickling sensation. Then there was the pain of the brackets making sores on the inside of her cheeks. However, through it all we got by with only 2 evenings of ibuprofen for the pain and by Sunday morning, she said the only teeth that hurt were her canines. I felt so bad for her but at the same time it was hard for me not to laugh at the faces she was making because she was trying to wrap her lips over the braces were just pathetically hilarious! Any of you who've had braces know what I'm talking about. Pictures, like I promised, are coming soon.

This past weekend was a total bust as far as getting ANY yard work done. The meteorologist really got the weather forecast wrong. I swear we are going to need to build an ark soon if the rain keeps up. My dad told me that we've had right about 30" of precipitation since the beginning of the year - an all time record for the wettest Spring in like, forever. Anyway, I'm just totally pissed about this because I have no clue when I'm going to get my husband to commit to doing in the near future.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Brace face

Today G got her braces on. Oh boy - let me tell you, this week has been one big crying fest at my house. I thought that she was finally okay with getting them but as the day drew nearer, her fears started coming out. By this morning my frustration and patience with her finally turned to heart break. My girl was very near to experiencing a full blown panic attack! Besides a stomach ache and feeling nauseous, she ended up with diarrhea and feeling like she had a weight on her chest to where she couldn't breath. No hyperventilating but I did tell her to practice her deep breathing (Lamaze technique breathing I taught her when she was potty training and having issues going #2). In the end, she discovered that mom was right and that it wasn't as bad as she thought it was going to be. I took her to the Chinese Buffet afterwards but she didn't eat much. She really had a hard time figuring out how to get the lo mein noodles in her mouth. It was a site to behold but we had some good laughs over it. She's going to have to get used to brushing her teeth after every meal. Flossing is going to be a big chore. I know they say it's very important but I don't think I'm going to push it on G unless she gets food in between her teeth. If I survived 8 years of braces without regular flossing, I think she will too. One thing they gave us was some flouride treatment mouthwash. They said she should gargle with it every night before bed. Yet again, it wasn't a requirement when I had braces and my teeth turned out fine. I think the flouride treatment she gets once a year at the dentist office is enough. With all the negative info out there about flouride being toxic, it just makes me uncomfortable and I don't think I'm going to have her do it. Besides that, they gave her a cherry-flavored bottle and she can't stand anything other than mint. She was never one to take liquid medicine when she was a baby/toddler. It was always a big kicking and screaming fight. She didn't even like the chewables. I was so glad when she finally learned how to swallow a pill. Thank you Grandma Sandy for that one! Anyway, enough rambling. When I get a chance I'll take a picture of her with her new "grill" and post it.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

May, in a nutshell

Mother's Day was an alright day for me. I got a new coffee pot that I didn't know I needed and a gift certificate from G for a pedicure.

May 12-14th I fulfilled my civil servant duty as a juror for the Madison County courts. I was interviewed for a medical malpractice lawsuit but was rejected, I am pretty sure, because of my belief in placing limits on money damages. That and the fact that one of the witnesses for the plaintiff was the best man in my wedding. It didn't matter that I haven't seen or talked to Mark in probably 10 years. I was finally selected as to serve on the Madison County Coroner's inquest for 6 cases. It was a one day stint and pretty interesting at that. The job of a coroner's inquest juror is to rule on the manner of death (suicide, homicide, natural causes, accidental, and undetermined). Of the six, we ruled the 4 were accidental (1 MVC of a elderly couple and 3 accidental phamocological drug overdoses), 1 suicide, and 1 homicide (actually 2, one being an unborn 6 month gestation baby). The suicide and homicide were news worthy cases.

This past weekend was pretty busy for me. Friday evening was G's Spring Musical at her school. The 3rd-5th grades performed "The Adventures of Lewis & Clark". For the majority of the musical, she was an extra playing an Indian and at the last 5 minutes of the play, she was the character,Julie, where she had a small speaking part. Saturday afternoon she had a birthday party to go to and Sunday afternoon we went to my BFF's eldest daughter's high school graduation party. I'm really glad that what we had to do on Saturday and Sunday were in the afternoon so I could get my normal household chores completed.

This week is G's last week of school. Technically Friday is the last day but as per usual, I'm letting her skip that day since they don't do much other than clean out their desks and go to a talent show. We are going to Grant's Farm and possibly to the Mills Mall for some shopping. Thursday, she gets her braces. She's went back and forth on being nervous about it. I think when it comes down to it, she's worried that she's going to starve because everything that is on the "no no" list, she loves to eat. I'm crossing my fingers that this will finally get her to start trying new things and eating healthier. I can dream, can't I?

Other than that, I made a big step and deactivated myself from an online parenting community that I've been a member of for almost 3 years. I did this almost 3 weeks ago and while the first week was rough, I'm finally getting over the hump. A couple of months a go I tried to just stay away but I just couldn't do it. The final straw was that basically I had a disagreement with one of the Admins over sponsorship of a member to one of the private forums. I won't get into the details but in a nutshell, I felt like the Admins tried to lay a huge guilt trip on some of the members who had denied this certain members membership. I called bullshit on it and one Admin got her feelings hurt. I left before I burnt my bridge. Besides the fact, the site is on it's second wave of pregnancies, and it wasn't helping me and my mental state in regards to my own fertility.

Overall, I'm hoping like hell I can put my hubby to work this Memorial Day weekend. I've got lots for him to do and I just hope we don't kill each other in the process. Bottom line, hubby likes to over think things through and it takes him twice as long to get the job done because of this. Personally, I think it's his way of procrastinating and ultimately knows I'll get tired of it and just do the stuff my damn self. However, there are a couple of things that I physically cannot do by myself and he's going to have to help me, like it or not.

So, tell me, the few who actually read my blog, what do you have planned for the holiday?

Monday, May 5, 2008

Obviously I wasn't thinking

There is nothing like a Godiva Dark Chocolate Mocha to hit the spot. Aaah! Yep, AF showed today. All I had to do was entertain a slight thought of buying a pregnancy test and the bitch says, Yo girl! Back the fuck up! I was jes runnin behind, not taking a vacay! Should have known that being 3 days late was a friggin fluke. I mean it wasn't as if I was having any other pregnancy symptoms but it was the first time in 5 months that she didn't show up on day 28. I thought that maybe, just maybe, the first cycle I decided not to take my temp on a daily basis and just let everything be, I'd get a pleasant surprise. Shame on me. What was I thinking?

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Blogging, etc.

I'm such a shitty blogger. Honestly, I worry too much that what I blog about no one is interested in so I just rather not blog at all. I'm perfectly happy reading everybody else's blogs. But, I will continue blogging just so I don't look like a stalker when I comment on other's blogs.

In other news . . .

G will be getting braces. We go back in another week and start on the impressions, etc. She has a overbite and crowding with misalignment of her bite that needs to be corrected. Then at the end of May, the braces go on. Now to figure out how we are going to pay for it. Still thinking on that.

Do you remember watching the puberty video when you were 10,11 years old? I sure do. I also remember reading Judy Blume's, Are You There God? It's Me Margaret, over and over again. Oh, those were the days - so foolishly excited to become a woman!
Well after much bitching and whining from Gabby that she already knew about all that, we went through the puberty class last night. For someone who complained so much about not wanting to go, she sure was all ears and tried to answer every question on the quiz. There is only one girl in her class that has already started her period and has boobs. The rest of them, Gabby included, are trying to pretend they have boobs by wearing bras. Gabby has mosquito bites but Grandma (my mom) seems to think she needs to start wearing a bra so I broke down a got her a couple. Other signs like mood swings, headaches, and zits lead me to believe that this summer is going to bring about many changes for my girl.

D and I are going ghost hunting this Saturday. We are going back to the Original Springs Hotel in Okawville, IL. We visited it for the first time in January and had some interesting experiences. Since that time we have joined a paranormal/ghost hunting/debunking group and this is are first trip as members of PROSCI. We are staying the night there too so that will be nice. I just hope we can get some sleep when we are ready to turn in. We don't get away much and I am so looking forward to some alone time, if you know what I mean.

Monday, April 7, 2008

Regret and Shame

Something happened last evening before G's bedtime that put my daughter in such a state of frenzy. I found her cowering and crying in her playroom and when I called her out, she rushed into my arms crying that her world was ending.

You see, my temper got the best of me and I didn't handle myself so well when my husband had a massive temper tantrum. I'm not going to get into what it was over but take my word that what happened did not warrant that type of behavior. To say that D has a bit of an explosive temper, is an understatement. I've dealt with for 20 years now. He gets carried away about things that, to me, are so minor. G has witnessed his tantrums but last night was the first time she saw him act like a raving maniac and destroy a door. The cussing and carrying on, I don't like it but I deal with it. It's the destruction of our things that I can't handle. When the pounding on the door started and I heard the splinter of wood, I lost it! I wanted to rush in and whale on his ass so bad but instead I turned into a screaming banshee. I am not proud of myself that I lost it. I don't know why I react to him that way but I do. What got to me most of all is when G told me that her "world was ending because daddy was going to divorce me." I had to calm her down and tell her that her dad wasn't going to divorce me over something silly as what had happened. Everything calmed down as quickly as it started, as is the case with his tantrums. I told D what G said and he, too, assured her that he wasn't going to divorce me.

I just have this awful sick feeling in my stomach today because I'm so ashamed that both of our tempers got out of hand and scared our daughter that bad. What happened last night does not occur on a frequent basis. In fact, I can't remember the last time he reacted to that extreme. Now I just hope I haven't permanently damaged my child.

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Chicago trip update #2

Last post I mentioned I made the airfare and hotel reservations. Well since that time, my mother is also going. I also having been gathering info on a discount visitor pass for the El and discount cards for the tourist attractions. I made a change in our airfare tickets. Paying $10 more per ticket but that’s okay. Dean brought up a valid point when he asked why we were leaving so late (1:55 p.m.) So I backed it up to an 11:55 a.m. flight. I also checked into the routes that the El takes and I think instead of cabbing it from the airport, we are going to take the El. We can buy a 2-day visitor pass for unlimited trips for $9 a pass. I know that will be a big savings versus taking a cab from the airport plus just to get the experience of riding public transpo, ya know. I checked the itinerary and we can take a trip that involves taking 2 trains that dumps us out within 0.3 miles of the hotel and only 30 minutes to get there.

My baby girl is really starting to grow up. The girl can drive me crazy with her smart mouth but at the same time I am enjoying watching her slowly develop into her own and realizing that she's growing up.

She told me this Saturday that this trip was going to change her life because it'll be her first time on an airplane, something she is really scared to do, and that she knows that is a big hurdle for her to get over her fear of flying. She knows that it is a step toward being ready for any future airplane trips we might take. That sounded so "grown up" to me and it was all I could do not to break down crying. I think this trip is going to change my life too.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

The plane tickets are booked and paid for

To Chicago. I've been wanting to take G to Chicago for at least 3 years and one thing or another, financially mainly, always came up. Well dammit, we are finally getting to go this year! It's going to be a mother/daughter/MIL get-a-way for 2 nights, 3 days and we are going the week after her 11th birthday. I was hoping the stinker would have wanted to go the week of her birthday but the sweetie she is didn't want to celebrate her birthday without her dad. That made Dean's day when he heard that, especially since he kind of pouted about it when I mentioned to him that I was looking at the week of June 9th.

For a while, I didn't think the trip was going to happen. G is terrified of heights, hence the reason we no longer waste our time/money going to Six Flags or any amusement park. Hell, it wasn't until last summer that she finally decided to brave the steps/climb to the water slides at Raging River's and/or our nearby city aquatic center. When I told her that we needed to fly to Chicago because it was going to take to friggin long to ride the Amtrak and I wasn't going to drive, she told me no way, no how. That she was too scared to fly. I got upset with her and told her that she could just forget about going to Chicago then. However, when I mentioned this to MIL on Easter, she confronted G about it and basically in so many words to her it was bullshit and that she was going to fly. G relented and said ok. MIL has a way with talking G into doing things. It's great in one way but in another way, frustrating as hell for me.

So now that I have the plane tickets booked, I've got to figure out where we are going to stay. Stay tuned for more details as I make them.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

My Snow Bunny


My girl on the day of what was hopefully the last snow storm of Winter 2008.
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Friday, March 7, 2008

3-years ago and it still feels like yesterday

Just Those Few Weeks
by Susan Erlin

For those few weeks-
I had you to myself.
And that seems too short of time
To be changed so profoundly.

In those few weeks-
I came to know you...
And to love you.
You came to trust me with your life.
Oh, what a life I had planned for you!

Just those few weeks-
When I lost you,
I lost a lifetime of hopes,plans, dreams, and aspirations...
A slice of my future simply vanished overnight.

Just those few weeks-
It wasn't enough time to convince others
How special and important you were.
How odd, a truly unique person has recently died
And no one is mourning the passing.

Just a mere few weeks-
And no "normal" person would cry all night
Over a tiny, unfinished baby,
Or get depressed and withdraw day after endless day.
No one would, so why am I?

You were just those few weeks my little one
You darted in and out of my life too quickly.
But it seems that's all the time you needed
To make my life so much richer-
And give me a small glimpse of eternity.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Old Man Winter, You Can Leave Now.

I'm at the end of my rope with Winter. I know I live in the Midwest so that means the weather is constantly changing but this is getting ridiculous. Every 4 days or so we are getting hit with more winter-like precipitation and I'm sick of it. Even the kid who usually loves playing in the stuff, is sick of it. Plus I think for the first time in my life I can say that the weather is having an effect on my mood/disposition. And it's not good. Just ask my husband. He said something smart ass (can't even remember what it was) to me last night to which I threatened him that if kept it up I would throw water on him. He responded back to me that I wouldn't dare. I did. He of course threw a shit fit about it like a 2-yr old and you know what? I didn't care. I didn't apologize for it, and the way I'm feeling right now, I'm not going to. I'm in a serious funk and it's making me hyper aware of all the annoying things he does/does not do and I'm not really liking him right now. Ugh!

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

What's the surprise, you say?

I got lazy on the eyebrow plucking and asked my hair stylist to wax them today. I guess he forgot how he did it the last time because now I have pencil thin eyebrows! Yikes! Let's just say I will be growing them out and fighting the temptation to get my eyebrow pencil out to fill them in until then and hoping like hell my husband or kid doesn't notice the new "surprised" look on my face tonight.

Monday, February 11, 2008


G got to meet a couple of her favorite UFC Champs on Saturday -- Matt Hughes and Robbie Lawler. Hubby took the pictures. I swear either we both suck at taking pictures or we need a new camera!
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Wednesday, February 6, 2008

After Super Tuesday

I've a long way to go on learning a few things about politics. I'm one of those who didn't vote until the last Presidential Election. However, it just continually amazes me how many people who voted didn't even know which candidates are still in the race!

Then there is this bullshit rule when you go to vote in a Primary that you have to declare what party you are voting. I thought everyone's vote was supposed to be private. I mean the person who helped me feed my ballot into the automatic ballot counter machine was all "Oh no, put it back into the cardboard thingy. I can't see your votes or it'll burn my eyes!" How hypocritical. Is that the word I am even looking for?

I swear this election is putting a strain on my marriage. I'm pissed that my husband, for the first time in his voting life, had to vote the political party he has always disagreed with because his government job depends upon it. Apparently they check the voting records of employees. Ugh! Plus, when I ask my husband why he "likes" this particular candidate, he can't give me any clear cut reasons. So hubby, this ecard is for you! Ugh! I guess if James Carville and Mary Matalin can do it, so can we.

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Another picture

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My girl is the one on the right. :-)

DARE Dance


Here is one of the few pictures I took. I told you I was shitty at taking pictures. Just standing around as usual.
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Monday, February 4, 2008

And We Danced . . .

So G's first dance was this last Friday evening. After receiving almost 10 inches of snow from 12 p.m. Thursday until that morning, and school's being canceled, the dance went on as scheduled. It was our city's DARE graduate dance. I'm not positive but I know it was open to all of Alton's public schools and private schools. How did G like it you ask? Eh - not so much. She said it was boring because most of the kids in her class just wanted to stand around, and "OMG Mom - I wasn't going to be the only one dancing!" Maybe it was because the DJ announced at the beginning of the dance that he would NOT be playing Soldier Boy. That news was met with much grumbling.

For me, personally, I had fun. Fun watching my kid and a few hundred other 9-11 year-olds try to socialize with each other; watching them trying to figure out how they are supposed to act at a dance, watching them scope each other out. It was fun observing the differences of how the girls acted compared to the boys. For the most part, the girls stood around bopping their heads to the music and checking out what everyone was wearing. For the boys, while a very small percentage tried to dance most chased each other around the gym, punching on each other. Yeah, I took a few pictures but didn't end up with as many as I would have like. I could have sworn I took way more pictures than I did but then again, I'm pretty illiterate when it comes to using a digital camera. I forgot my camera this morning so the pictures will have to wait until tomorrow.

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

My girl is so funny

Sadly, bathroom humor is very big in my household. I know many people think it's disgusting talking about farting, pooping, burping, etc. but that is the way I was raised and how my 3-unit family is now. We are always laughing about that kind of stuff. Well this morning, in efforts to try to head off another grumpy start of her day, I tried to be nice by putting G's school uniform in front of the heater vent to warm up. I don't know what it is about closet but her clothes are always freezing. Anyway, I am sitting on the bed waiting for her to come out of the bathroom so I can help her get dressed. Yes. I am one of those mothers who still have to help their 10 1/2 year old get dressed in the morning. Believe me, it goes much faster that way and it reduces the chance of WW3. So she comes in the room and I say, "G", I tried to warm up your clothes this morning so you wouldn't be so cold." She says, "What did you do mom? Fart on them".

This and That just so I won't get behind

It took at least 45 minutes past my scheduled appointment to be called back to room. This has never happened before. You'd think one of the advantages of seeing a NP instead of the OB/GYN is not having to be pushed back by someone delivering a baby. You'd think the stupid medical assistant would have had a clue why, just why, my blood pressure was a bit elevated. Ugh! Let me just say that I hate dr. office scales! They always weigh me 5-7 lbs heavier than my bathroom scale! Anyway, I chickened out asking for additional tests. Bottom line, I told the NP that I was using progesterone cream in the 2nd half of my cycle and was going to be adding Vitamin B because I knew that my progesterone level was off due to the "light" periods. I reiterated that I still wasn't comfortable with taking synthetic hormones. She told me to let her know when I was and she'd write a RX for the clomid. So the ball is in my court on just how far I am willing to go to have another baby. As it has always been.

Weather in the St. Louis Metropolitan area was crazy yesterday. It reached record breaking temperatures of 73 degree at noon and within 3 hours time, it dropped almost 40 degrees! Freaking crazy! I am so ready for Winter to end and for Spring to coming rushing in like a lion. They are calling for snow to hit by tomorrow night and by the time it is over, 4-6 inches of accumulation. This blows because I just know they will cancel school and that means no DARE dance Friday night. G will be so disappointed. She has her outfit all planned out too. We are supposed to go on a legging and nylon footies hunt tonight in order to complete the ensemble. Let's just say my girl will be going dressed Hanna Montana style. Don't worry - I'm taking lots of pictures.

Friday, January 25, 2008

It's that time of year again

The good ol' well woman exam is Monday, the 28th. As the date gets closer I am in turmoil on how to respond to the NP when she asks me if I have anything I want to discuss. At the back of my mind is the pregnancy issue. Last year I finally got the nerve up to ask her for blood work to test my progesterone level. My participation on infertility/TTC forums led me to inquire about my hormone level. Much reading and self-education led me to believe that I was low on progesterone. Low progesterone affects the luteal phase as well as the uterine lining. Since I've been charting my cycles, I've determined that my LP is on average 9-10 days long with lately it being more like 8-9. My uterine lining, I believe is not building up enough to provide the optimum cushy environment for a fertilized egg to implant. I suspect this true by the amount of menstrual flow I've been having.

From last years appointment to this one coming up, I had my progesterone level tested on CD 21 and it was either .06 or 6. I'm not 100% positive about that number because I didn't ask her to repeat herself over the phone because I was upset that the solution she mentioned immediately was Clomid. All I knew was that the number was low. I didn't want to take Clomid because of the risk of multiples and because I didn't want to put something synthetic in my body. So I started working with a Chinese Medical Dr/Acupuncturist from Wisconsin. He put together a pre-ovulation and post-ovulation blend of Chinese herbs. I took them from May 1 - August 30 hoping to improve my LP. I started to see improvement but ended up quitting it because I got really frustrated that it wasn't working fast enough, got it in my head that it was going to quit working because I had to go back on my BP med, and it was VERY expensive. Since December I've been using natural progesterone cream that I'm rubbing into my skin during my luteal phase. I'm getting ready to add vitamin B6 to my regimen now.

Now that I'm getting closer to the big 4-0, I'm wanting to find out what my FSH level is. FSH basically tells you if you have any good eggs left and how close you are to menopause. I want to know this because then if the answer is not good, I will be able to convince myself to just give up the dream of a 2nd child. I can get on with my life and I'll be able to stop obsessing about babies. Now all I have to do is get up the nerve and ask for this test. For some reason I'm a chicken when it comes to this. Partly I think because I'm afraid I'm going to be told NO and/or that I need to do all the western medicine stuff I don't want/can't afford to do. And lastly, because of this, be told that I must not want a baby that bad if I won't do X, Y, Z.

Why do I torment myself? Ugh!

Thursday, January 24, 2008

dish cloth

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A co-worker of mine introduced knitting to me a little over a year ago. I knitted a couple of scarves for Christmas 06 and then put the needles down. I took them back up again a couple months ago to keep my hands and brain busy so I could fight the urge to smoke. The picture posted is my 2nd go round with knitting a dish cloth. Not too bad if I do say so myself. I'm about 75% done knitting another one which I am confident will be even better. Another project that I attempted was a poncho for G. The yarn that I chose for the project is really hard to work with and needless to say I had to put it away for a while. Quitting smoking and knitting with difficult yarn does not equal a pleasant picture. Lots of cussing involved. Well I started that back up again and it is going smoother this time. It is very pretty yarn and once I get a little bit further with it, I'll be sure to post a pic.

Monday, January 21, 2008

A bit of this, a bit of that

Excuse me while I ramble a bit.

I'm so ready for Spring to arrive but those of us who live in the Midwest know how unpredictable the weather can be. I know it's not so but it just seems like the up and down up the temperatures we had makes it so much easier to catch stuff. Like colds and the flu and shit. Not me thankfully. This past week has been hell at our home. First the husband quickly comes down with what I thought was the pneumonia within 2 days time. Symptoms - coughing, sneezing, head congestion, body aches and chills, and fevers up to 103.4 Between the drainage and coughing, he almost lost his voice. Now, a week and a half later, he almost has his voice back and he's back to smoking like a chimney. Grrr! G came down with a cold within days of D. She didn't run high fevers like D but she had a definite full week of miserable head congestion. She's finally on the mend too. Let me tell you - my sympathy bone was shot to death years before she came along by D due to him acting like the world was coming whenever he got a minor sniffle. Now when they truly get sick, it is very hard for me to muck up much sympathy. I'm good for about a day then I'm like - Come on! Get over it already! Sad, I know.

G is attempting to break out of her self-imposed hermit stage. This past weekend she got a spur of the moment invite to go over to a friends for a few hours. I talk to said friend's mother, make the arrangements, and when I get off the phone she bursts into tears. I was supposed to read her mind and say No. She wanted to go to said friend house but then she didn't. I put my foot down and told her she was going to go, no ifs ands or buts about it. It was time to start acting like a kid again. Of course, when D & I picked her up she didn't want to leave. Typical. This Saturday will be a big test for her. A cousin/best friend invited her over 2 weeks ago to come and spend the night and then go to a wildlife presentation with her. The other night when we were reading before bedtime, she started acting strange and when I asked her what was wrong she admitted she was starting to worry about this weekend. I calmly and gently told her that she needed to stop working herself up and fretting over on the what ifs (headache, etc.) and that she needed to push herself to do the things she once did. After talking with K a couple times since then, she's actually looking forward to it.

G is also getting excited for the upcoming DARE dance that our local public and private schools are having for the DARE graduates on February 1st. I volunteered to be a Chaperone. There is no way in hell I let her go otherwise. Luckily, she isn't at that age where she's embarrassed to be seen with me so that eliminates that worry. The big thing this year in her class is for the girls and boys to be boyfriend/girlfriend. I personally think 10,11 year-olds are too young for that shit but you know it's not like they are going on actual dates, talking on the phone etc. From the sounds of it, a girl will get asked to go "out" with a boy in the morning and by the afternoon, he dumps her. It's ridiculous really but oh well. Thankfully G realized that she will have much more fun going to the DARE dance without a boyfriend and just with her little girlfriends. I'll be sure to take pictures of G's first dance.

Friday, January 11, 2008

And I waited this long why??

So the mammogram, it was a piece of cake. Even with the progesterone cream enhance soreness, I barely felt anything. The only time there was any "discomfort" was when the tech was getting the side view of my left boob. It's my biggest of the two so that's probably why. Anyway, it was over in less than 10 minutes. I can't believe I held off getting this done so damn long. I'm just going to venture a guess that all those horror stories come from women who don't have much tissue up top. Those of us who are naturally, or even artificially, blessed with huge knockers have an easier time. Either that or I have a much higher pain tolerance than others. So that's the story to the mammogram. Hopefully, they don't find anything.

The saga on G's mole removal continues. . . I should probably make it a separate post but what they hey.

I took G to Dr. C's office (dermatologist) yesterday afternoon for the follow up appointment on the mole removal of her left forearm. After waiting an hour past the appointment time, we get called to go into a exam room. Of course, G gets called by the masculine version of her name. This is a huge pet peeve of mine but it seems like everyone does it so why correct it huh? So anyway, Dr. C comes in and just like I figured, everything was cool as far as the pathology results. But then came the dreaded words, "The 2 on the palm of her left hand need to come off." G got the deer in the headlights look again and all the big talk I got from her on the way to the appointment that getting moles removed were no big deal was immediately forgotten. She started whimpering that she didn't want it done. Dr. C was so good about it, gently explaining to her that we (me and him) knew she didn't want it done but that moles on palms of hands don't belong there and the longer we waited, the bigger they'd get, and the more he'd have to cut out, thereby making her hand even more sore.

So she finally submits to it and she lays down to get into a comfortable position. I get into position to hold her free hand and pat her head while she cried and screamed during the anesthetic injection. I kept it together for that but then like a dang fool, looked at her hand after he cut the offending spots out. Wrong idea! I started sweating like a pig, got really nauseous, and thought I was going to pass out. I was trying to do the whole breath in through my nose, out through my mouth while counting to 10 in my head to get those sensations to pass but it wasn't working. So I had to speak up about it before I embarrassed myself even further by keeling over. Dr. C told me to slowly drop to the ground and sit down until I got my bearings. I did that for a couple minutes and then slowly got up when I knew he was done working on her hand. He then told me to go sit down in the chair. I guess he thought I still looked pretty pale because next thing I knew he was dabbing my forehead with rubbing alcohol to cool me off and then started fanning me with a magazine. I'm telling you, when it comes to wounds or deep cuts on my kid I just can't handle it, but if I see it on anybody else I am cool as a cucumber. Today, I ended up having to pick her up 45 minutes after I dropped her off at school. The antibiotic didn't settle well in her stomach and she was feeling like she was going to throw up. She was much better after she got some real food in her. But today was a day of hookie from school for her and work for me.

Geez, I can't make any story short, can I?

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

What was I thinking?

Ack! I am a glutton for punishment because when I finally made the appointment for my first baseline mammogram (3 years late) , I did not take into consideration where I would be in my cycle. AF is scheduled to make her appearance in 2 days and my boobs are already freaking killing(pain is enhanced more so by the progesterone cream I've been using) and I am going today at 4:00 to put my boobs into a vice! Where's that slapping your head emoticon when I need it?!

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Back to the previously schedule programming

Now that the New Year has began and most of all the holiday goodies are gone, I'm ready to get back on track with the weight loss and exercise thing. So far, I've managed to walk 5 out of the last 7 days with my walking buddies/co-workers.

If you are familiar with Alton, you know that it is a very hilly little river town, especially in the downtown area. In an hour to 1.25 hours time, we manage to squeeze in 3.4 miles and in those 3.4 miles, there are several very steep hills and one set of stairs that lead up to the Riverview Park. I've been doing this for almost 2 years now and I have notice some good results. I don't have exact figures because like an idiot I didn't take measurements prior to starting this walking program. I have not lost much weight but toned up a huge amount. I think the reason for that is 1) I'm not very good at adjusting my diet and 2) any weight I would have lost has been converted to muscle. Muscle is a good thing. This time, I'm going to recruit Dean into helping me take some measurements before I get too far into it again.

Since I quit smoking a little over 3 months ago, I can't wait until that magical day when I won't struggle for breath so much getting up the 7th Street hill. Oh and me thinks it is time to get a new pair of walking shoes too. For the 2nd day in a row, the bunion on my left foot is giving me fits. Ouchie!