Sunday, December 31, 2006

New Year's Eve

It's that time of year again, time to come up with a list of resolutions that will only be broken by mid-Feb. Actually, the one resolution I made last year (be less judgmental of my fellow co-workers) I did keep and it made me a better person. I am both less critical and cynical at work now, two things with which I was hoping the resolution would help me.
Now it is a new year, and I still don't have any resolutions. I'm thinking of one that involves the boy, but I'm not yet ready to commit that one to paper.
How about you - any suggestions? What resolutions did you keep/break and what new ones are you making for 2007?

Saturday, December 30, 2006

The Table

If you come visit my home, you'll notice a lack of coherence in furniture styles throughout my home. We like to call it eclectic, but others say we are indecisive which isn't altogether true. Hubby and I are very decisive on the type of furniture we like, we just can't find it for sale anywhere. So our lack of style is due to picking up a piece of furniture here and there to "make do" until we find the right piece.
We've found that Ethan Allen seems to mesh well with our style, so when we are in the mood to furniture shop, we usually end of there. This is what we did last September, and we found a kitchen table that really worked for us. Unfortunately, at the time it did not really work with our budget, so we decided to wait a bit. Right after Thanksgiving, we decided to return to the store to get the table - it was to be out gift to each other for Christmas. It would be something both of us liked and also meant no running around looking for gifts. A win-win situation.
Once we arrived at the store and perused the furniture we noticed the table was no longer on the floor. After walking around trying to find a sales associate who was not busy on her cell phone, we finally went to the front desk to get some help. I pointed out in their catalogue the table we wanted, and a sales clerk was ready to show us the table. When we told her we didn't need to see the table, that we were ready to buy it, you could see her eyes light up. We sat down to do the paperwork, and as she typed away on her computer we heard her make discouraging noises. "Hmm, that's odd, we don't seem to have any in stock, let me check our warehouse, nope not there, let me check the other computer, hmm, not there either". This went on for a bit, until she finally broke the news to us - there were no more of these tables available since they were discontinued and there were no floor models available anywhere in Texas. She tried to steer us towards a different table, but it was one that had already said no to. We consider some bedroom furniture they have, but decide not to get anything that day. We left the store, rather discouraged and faced with the daunting task of having to figure out what to get each other for Christmas.
Well, a week before Christmas, my husband tells my son to get my gift out of its hiding place. I'm handed a wrapped book-like package, which is rather puzzling - why do I need to open this before Christmas? J is having a panic attack, insisting to hubby that I shouldn't be opening it yet, and I'm agreeing. Finally, hubby forces me to open it. It is an Ethan Allen catalogue. My heart skips a beat, I look up at hubby "What?!? How?!?!" Back to the catalogue, there is a sticky note in it - you guessed it, he found my table!! It was being delivered that Saturday, so he figured I had to open my present early since I would notice a new table in the house.
It seems that for the past few weeks he has been calling stores trying to locate this table. He had one that was literally sold out from under him as he was talking to a sales associate. Then he found mine. It was a floor model, so there was a scratch in it, but he didn't care (nor did I). He had them hold it so he could check it out. The scratch could be buffed out, so he got it. The second part of my present was the cost of it - because it was scratched, because it was a floor model and because it was a discontinued model at that he got it 70% off!
I knew there was a reason why I married that man!

Monday, December 25, 2006

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas everyone! Since it is the holiday, we wanted to capture our memories, so that meant we bought batteries for the camera. As you can see above, that is my new and improved short haircut. I was going to post a side-by-side comparisson of a long-haired version of me, but there doesn't seem to be any around. Must be because I'm the one who takes the pictures during special events.

Our Christmas has been low key, with just the three of us enjoying our day together. To quote the boy, "this is the best Christmas ever, well at least until next year". That's my boy, always looking ahead to bigger and better things. The weather has been raw and rainy, but that is OK, since J got so many toys, we are having an adventure just putting them all together.

What did I get? Well, it is a long story, one that I should do justice by telling you of the troubles that went with it, so I think I'll hold off on telling you exactly what it is until I have time to sit down and write the whole story out. I'll just say this, Hubby gained multi-points with this gift.

I had been not feeling in the holiday spirit up until yesterday, when I realized what I was missing. It was quality time with my family. Work has been so hectic that I haven't had time step back and appreciate what I have. So yesterday, J and I made gingerbread cookies (with an amazingly easy recipe) for Santa, then we all watched some holiday classics and read from a book my mother-in-law had written for all the grandkids some years ago. Ahh, now I could feel the spirit. So, to those who've thought that I'v ebeen a bit "grinchy" this season, you are correct. However, I'm back on track to a more positive outlook.
Happy holidays everyone! May your hearts be filled both with joy and laughter, and love and friendship.

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

fa, la, la,la,la,la,la,la,la

'Tis the season to be cranky, fa la la la la ,la la la la la,
Down we come with colds and flu, fa la la la la, la la la la la,
Lose our voices, no song for you, fa la la la la, la la la la,
Wish that we could take the day off, fa la la la la, la la la la
Hid under the covers, fa la la la la, la la la la
Sleep all day, fa la la la la, la la la la
Instead we go on running errands, fa la la la la, la la la la.
Wrapping presents, tying bows, fa la la la la, la la la la.
Soon it will all be over, fa la la la la, la la la la.
We'll finally rest once again, fa la la la la, la la la la.

Monday, December 11, 2006


You know it is the holidays, right? That this time of year is incredibly hectic. Of course, my work also picks up the pace at this time with extended hours for me. And the weather is yucky too. Plus blogger keeps eating my posts. Yup, all excuses as to why I haven't posted in a week and probably won't post for another week. Just thought I should prepare you.

Other news - I cut my hair. Lost a pound in the process - who knew hair weighed so much. Plus, some of my tension headaches are gone as well. My hair was so heavy that it was pulling at my scalp, leaving me with a headache almost everyday. I still have to mail off the hair to Locks for Love, but I am very glad I did it, although I probably won't do it again. I should take a picture of the ponytail to show you just how much was cut. The hairdresser was very reluctant to cut it all off; he didn't believe me when I told him it was OK to cut it to just chin length. In fact, he refused to cut the back extra short - he told me to go home, think about it for a week and then if I still wanted to do it he would cut more at no charge. He didn't want me making any decisions that I might regret later. He's a good guy.

Wednesday, December 06, 2006


Here in Texas, we get about 3 weeks of cold weather for the entire year. This happens to be one of them. Now I know that anyone who lives in the Midwest or anywhere north will scoff at this, but we've been cold enough to get frost on the ground. Brrr. Do you realize this means I actually have to dig a coat out from the back of my closest? It's like going into the wardrobe from The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe - it keeps going and going with no sight of the jacket I'm looking for. Plus, I have to run at 4:30 am in this weather. It is tough to dress appropriately for a run where you see your breathe when you begin the run but are soaked in sweat at the end of it.
I know you all have sympathy for me now, especially after the week the midwest has had. So, once you get in from shoveling snow for the umpteenth time this season, do think of poor little ol' me getting a chill here in Texas.

Thursday, November 30, 2006

You don't need an education?

So, yesterday I received a rather disturbing email from my son's teacher, informing me that he had stopped doing all work this week and that when asked as to why, he replied, "I'm just not into school." She suggested we get together for a conference to discuss what can be done to get him to do his work. Although J tests at near genius level, he hates school and him being 8 and all, that hatred overwhelms any of his abilities to get work done.

When he came home, I calmly asked he'd gotten his work done, why hadn't he gotten it done (do you understand the directions, do you know how to do the problems, etc.) What it came down to was that he does not see the need for an education beyond third grade. Well, unluckily for him, I do. So, as part of his punishment for not doing his work , he is being made to do all the work around the house that someone without an education would do, in that that person would not be hired for anything other than type of job because he lacks an education.

I don't think he thought I was serious until we done with dinner. It was at the point when reminded him that if he didn't have an education, there's a good chance he'd be a busboy for life so he had better start clearing the table. He was also a dishwasher. And no, he didn't get to use an electric dishwasher, he had to do all the dishes by hand. This weekend he can look forward to pulling weeds and raking pine needles (yard man), scrubbing all three bathrooms (housecleaner) and whatever other chores I can think of to drive home the point of how important an education is.

UPDATE: As a note, I just received an email from his teacher telling me he did all his work today, got a 100 on some district test he took and he informed her that he knew how important it was for him to do his work.

Saturday, November 25, 2006

Weekend fun

Are all my US readers enjoying their long weekend? Doing some shopping, perhaps catching a movie? I had plans, but as you may have already guessed they have been changed. Seems that besides catching the spirit of the season, my son has caught the stomach bug of the season. Oh lucky us. It started with growns of "I'm hungry, my belly hurts I'm so hungry" from behind his closed door at 10:30pm last night. I told him to go get something to eat if it was so bad that it was keeping him up. Next thing I know, there is a small voice from downstairs asking for help. Of course, I am upstairs preparing for bed so I yell back "what" without much thought. Then that small voice again "I puked all over the kitchen table" What?!? That took me downstairs in a hurry.

I won't describe the sight that awaited me, only that he was not wrong when he said all over the table. Ugh. And that was the start of a very long night for us...and now day. I've got several areas of carpet to clean, one bedroom wall, and a bathroom or two that will need severe disinfection. The only bright note - at least it is a weekend and we won't miss work or school.

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Thought for the day

Life is ten percent what happens to you and ninety percent how you respond to
- Lou Holtz

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Running update

I know what you all are thinking, "Boy, that Dawn has been slacking in her postings. Does she think we'll just keep checking back until she posts again? We have lives too you know!" I understand, I do. I realize you are very busy folks who want to be entertained and are not getting the value for your buck that you signed up for. Unfortunately, there is not much I can do about that; I'm on severe sleep deprivation, all of my own creation.
As you may recall, about 6 weeks back I started training for the Houston Marathon/Chevon half marathon. At the time, my running group decided that 4:30am runs were a smart idea. I have come to the conclusion that although it does get the running out of the way early in my day, it does cut into my beauty sleep. Heck, it cuts into my ugly sleep. As I sit here pondering if I would benefit from a 15 minute nap (and if I would actually get up) before I leave for work, I can't help but reflect on the benefits of sleep. Besides it's magical powers of energizing your body, I've also noticed that my lack of sleep leaves me with a brain lag of approximately 2 secs. So if I am asked a question, I get a blank stare on my face for a moment or two before I am able to respond in a coherent manner.
I could correct this problem several different ways. One, I could stop running at 4:30 am. I won't do this, since I've already committed myself and have trained this long. Two, I could go to bed before 11:00 pm at night. That is good in theory; however, every time I start to head to bed early I get distracted with chores or prepping for the next day. Three, I could nap during the day at work. I am seriously contemplating this one. I just have to find a quite corner that I can sequester myself into without anyone noticing. Or I could turn my computer screen so it blocks the view of my face from my coworkers and then I can prop my head in my hands as I slyly close my eyes for a few moments. I think I'll try this one today.

Saturday, November 11, 2006

Daily quote

Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it's the only thing that ever has.
-Margaret Mead

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Election day

Election day for me is like Halloween for my son - I get all giddy and excited, practically skipping into the polling place. I don't know why, but I just want to shout "hooray" as I get my ID checked by the volunteers at the polling place. I always have a huge, silly grin on my face; as though this is the best place in the world to be (remembering that the voting booths are usually located in a well-used gymnasium), that it is my reward for a job well done.

I merrily head on to work where I then tend to harangue those I work with if they have not yet voted. Pity those who tell me they have no intention of voting - I'll bring up how thousands have died for the right to vote, how my husband has put his life on the line to maintain this right for them, but hey, whatever, it is their choice not to vote. It was fun to watch one of our newest co-workers squirm, since everyone else has already been through my tirade about voting and knows my passion about it as well. Actually, it is quite entertaining to watch, or at least that is what I have been told. Lest you get the wrong idea, my new co-worker knew to take my tirade in a tongue-and-cheek manner. Still, she'll be voting next election, you can count on that!

So if it is election day in your neck of the woods and you haven't voted yet, turn off the computer and go vote!

Monday, November 06, 2006

Quote of the day

"There can be no happiness if the things we believe in are different from the things we do."
– Freya Stark

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Help desk

I called our companies help desk today for a problem I was having with our new system. It has voice prompts, such as press 1 if you hate this system, press 2 if you really despise it, press 3 ...etc. I pressed the button for my prompt (button 2 for those who are interested). Yeah, the prompts weren't working - the message kept cycling about pressing buttons to get help, yet the help line needed help. I wonder if those folks in MI were thinking that it was just a quite day at the office.

Thursday, October 26, 2006


October is a very hectic month at my household, what with work requirements, school commitments, fundraising nonsense and scouting trips; and this week has been even more stressful than normal due to the new computer system at my work and my son's sudden acquisition of surliness. Needless to say, I have not been in the best of moods as of late. However, I had a pleasant surprise when J and I came home from a PTO meeting the other night.
On our doorstep there was a small Halloween party bag with a note attached. It said
BOO to you

The air is cool, the season fall.
So, Halloween will come to all.
The spooks are after things to do.
In fact, a spook brought this to you.
BOO is a shield from witching hour,
Just hang it up and watch its power.
On your front door is where it works.
It wards off spooks and scary jerks.
The treat that came with cryptic note
Is yours to keep, enjoy them both.
The power comes when friends like you
Will copy this and make it two.
Then others here among our friends
Will give warm fuzzies that will not end.
We'll all have smiles open on our faces,
No one will know who BOOed whos places.
Just one short day to work your spell
Or big ZAP will strike your tail.
And don't forget a treat
Like something cute or something sweet.
Please join the fun, lets really hear it
And spread some BOOS and Halloween Spirit
Inside the back was some candy, some glow sticks and a piece of Halloween decorated paper with the word "BOO" printed across it. The object of the booing is to hang the boo sign on your door or window and then "boo" two more people, hopefully brightening their day. It certainly brightened hours. J and I were able to step back from our constant bickering and work on this project together. We took some kraft bags and decorated them with cut out foam stickers of cats, ghosts, bats, and pumpkins. We kept puzzling over who could possibly have "booed" us as we filled the bags with candy and some chintzy Halloween rings we had laying around the house. We made our "Boo" signs and decorated them with more of the same and then debated over who would most likely continue the booing if we left it on their doorstep. He and his dad "spy sneaked" to the two houses we chose and left them the bags to be discovered the next morning.

We needed this - something out of the ordinary, not part of our normal routine. It was easy enough to do and a fun family activity without any stress or grades or competition. Maybe you might want to give it a try too!

Saturday, October 21, 2006

Little boys are made of puppy dog tails

I'm looking for some advice on how to deal with a surly 8 year old. My dear J has developed an attitude that any teenager would be envious to own. He has decided that "school is boring" and that any question you ask him will often result in an answer of "I don't care"- be it about dinner, doing homework, jumping off a building, whatever, it is all the same to him. He has also decided that he does not need to do his school work.

Our punishments so far have been ineffective in motivating him, and all that I have gained is a bedroom full of Bionicles, Legos, and Yu-Gi-Oh cards. I personally think they clash with my bedroom decor so I am begging you all to help me come up with some solutions. My close friend, a 3rd grade teacher, assures me that this is the age where they start to assert themesleves and try to be more independent, that the surliness is just one response to what they perceive as "unwanted" help from their parents, even though they do need it.

This is good to know, but that does not stop my urge (don't worry, it's just an urge, not an action) to wring his neck every time that phrase "I don't care" comes out of his mouth. What do you suggest?

Newer is better, right?!?

At my work this past week, we installed new computer systems that are supposed to "streamline processes" and prevent errors. The company thought ahead and sent out training manuals months in advance. Well, it was supposed to be months in advance, but in order to do any of the exercises, we needed the system installed on our computers; and instead of installing it on our old computers we had to have new computers sent to us, which of course, we delayed two weeks. So instead of months we had 2 1/2 weeks to train. No problem, that is plenty of time. Only, the manuals were set to version 2.2 and our computer systems had version 1.2, so none of the information meshed. We had the update shipped to us, only we weren't allowed to use it until "go live" day, which defeats the purpose doesn't it?

Go live day came and of course so did many snafus. I found that the updated training version didn't mesh either, that whenever you called for support you were told to use the "F1" help button, that the F1 help button might as well go into the trash since it just lists what is in the training manual, that if you explained to the help desk that F1 help did not help, they tell you to log your call and they research it since it is a new problem they had not faced before (this seemed to be their answer for any problem we had) or they simply did not answer the phone and didn't return messages. I am not enjoying work right now. In fact, my responses to the new system have become quite comical and often co-workers hear me laughing outloud at the absurdity of trying to use a system that is not user -friendly at all. If I can't laugh about it, I'll cry.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Today's Quote

Be careful about reading health books. You may die of a misprint.
--Mark Twain

Friday, October 13, 2006

Little things make up the big picture

Every once and awhile you have to stop and appreciate the little things. Today I'm doing just that. I got up this morning and it is finally cool enough to wear pants, pants that did not fit when I put them away last spring that are now loose on me. I was able to try out both a pilates class and a yoga class this morning. In yoga, I was able to do - for the very first time -upside down tree ( tree plank, uprooted bush, whatever it is called - the move where your butt and legs are up over your head). I found two dollars in the wash (house rule: the one who does the laundry gets to keep the money). I'm not needed at my son's school, I have no dr.'s appointments, no one is coming to my house to fix holes in my walls or leaks in my sinks; which all means that I can finally use those gift cards that I've had since last Christmas to go out and treat myself. Today is turning out to be a great day.

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

In the mind of a novice runner

Well, I've been training at 4:30am each morning. Yes, it is early, but it gets it out of the way. Plus that is when the other runners meet, and I need their support. Why? Here is the internal dialogue from my first short solo run on Sunday, the day after the training meeting/run.
I need to go run. OK, I'm putting my shoes on. Ow, it hurts to bend down. Oh no, I still have to go down the stairs. Ow, oow,ow, oow,ow,oow. OK, let me get a drink before I go. Whoops, spilled some on my shirt, oh well it will be soaked in sweat soon. OK, out the door. (outside my front door) I don't want to go running. (turn around, back inside) Honey, I need your IPOD to get me going. (get IPOD, out the door again).
Here we go, alright, tough starting. I don't remember having this much trouble getting my pace yesterday. Whoo, got to breath. What in the world does hubby have on this IPOD, this is not running music (skip song, skip song, skip song, find one I can tolerate). I can't breath, need to slow my pace. Side cramp, ow,ow,ow (run with arms up over head to get rid of side cramp, look like I am imitating a chimpanzee who is chasing you away from his banana). OK, I just passed the 2 mile mark, I can do this, I'm feeling my rhythm.
2.5mile mark - Why am I doing this? This is so dumb, running is dumb. I hate running. Why would anyone do this willingly? I have to keep running, otherwise I won't get home. There's the last curve, alright. Oh no, that wasn't the last curve, there's still more to go. It that it - yes it is! Almost done, keep moving, keep moving, there's home, done. Yay!
That wasn't so bad. I can do this.

Sunday, October 08, 2006

Marathon training

I've signed up to train for a marathon, well actually a half marathon (I'm not crazy).My local YMCA had a flyer that stated if you want to train for a half marathon show up at 6:30am this past Saturday. So, I showed up along with about 15 other folks, all a little unsure of what exactly we were getting ourselves into that morning. The trainer showed up and asked us which training were we here for (marathon or half) and said we would have 14 weeks to meet this goal. What?!? She actually is going to have us compete in the Houston Marathon. Gulp, I thought we were just training. Several other folks obviously were thinking the same thing because I saw the same look of worry cross their faces as well. However, our trainer has absolute confidence in us and believes that all of will be able to complete our training and the marathon. We shall see. We have many early morning runs scheduled for the next few months, with them getting earlier and earlier as the distances get longer and longer. I've going to give it my best shot, since this is one of my "life goals" and it would be a great thing for me to be able to accomplish it. Let's just hope my bad knees and heels can hold up under the pressure.

Friday, October 06, 2006


Last Saturday was my birthday. Besides the race, I didn't really do much, which was my plan. We did end up going out to eat at a new restaurant that had been highly recommended by both a workmate of mine and by a workmate of hubby's. I've come to the conclusion that we either went on an off night or both workmate's have a liking for food that is drowned in oil.

We came home and invited our friends over to share some ice cream cake.
At this point in the night, J started to cop and attitude, not wanting to join us at the table for the cake, not wanting to sing happy birthday, etc. I was getting rather upset with him, after all, it was my birthday - the least he can do is belt out an off-key rendition of "Happy birthday" with the rest of us. I started to get an inkling of what was wrong when hubby presented me with my gift, saying it was from J and him. J piped up at that point and said that it wasn't from him, that he didn't get me a gift because " I don't have a driver's license and someone has to take me to the store". Oh...he was upset because he couldn't get me a gift that he had picked out (he had something in mind - for the last few days he had been telling me that he just needed to go to the store with his dad to get the materials so he make my gift)!

I tried to be positive for him. The gift from hubby was a portrait of the two of them, which utterly surprised me since they had done it weeks ago and J had not let slip even one word about it. I pointed out that he was in the picture, so it was from him as well. Then I reminded him that I would still like to receive the card that I knew he had picked out for me. He ran to get it, telling me to hold on, that he had to put something in it.
When I opened it, I found a surprise in it - $20! It seems that he figured since he couldn't buy me a present, that he would give me the next best thing, the money to buy it for myself!

Saturday, September 30, 2006

Race day

I just finished my first 5k race, which was the Susan Komen Race for a Cure. I had an amazing time. Besides the actual activity, the atmosphere of the race was fantastic and so uplifting. Throughout the race course there were bystanders cheering on the runners. Some merely yelled "woohoo", others rapped out "beat breast cancer" songs while others still simply shouted "thank you". Even the police who were doing crowd control and blocking streets for the race got on their speakers to shout encouragement. Scattered throughout the race were participants who are survivors of breast cancer. You'd see their pink shirts as the crowd shifted. Then there were those who wore placards that said "I race in memory of..." I teared up several times as I read those, feeling a little bit of their loss. At the end of the race, the organizers called out to the survivors who finishing and had them announce how long they had been cancer-free. The answers I heard ranged from 2 months to 19 years.
I felt like I was part of something important and it helped me remember that there are many caring, considerate, good people around me in this world.

Friday, September 29, 2006

Banned books week

Tomorrow is the last day of banned books week, a week to celebrate literary creations that have been challenged or banned over the years for many an inane reason. I happy to report that out of the top 20 challenged books of all time, I have read 15 of them. Even to this day, Bridge to Terabithia by Katherine Paterson makes me cry everytime I read it. If you check out the American Library Association's website (, you too can see if the written word has corrupted you.

I am also happy to report that J is well on the road to reading his fair share of challenged/banned books. His favorite book series is the Captain Underpants series by Dav Pilkey, in the top ten of the most challenged books of the 21st century.

Monday, September 25, 2006

Bad mommy

There are times in my life when I realize that I should have handled things differently. The following is one of them.
J has "benchmark" testing this week and his math teacher sent home a packet of problems for him (as well as all his other classmates) to work on for practice. There were 23 word problems, with multiple choice answers. Easy, right? It would have been except instead of just being able to answer the problem, he needed to do a "window pane" which showed the facts of the problem, the main idea, the method, and the solution as to how the problem was solved. It is meant to teach the children how to break down a problem so that they can understand it. Fine, fine, but it is a pain in the ass and takes forever although I do not say this out loud. J does, and complains about it. He never wants to do all the steps since he can figure out the answer without doing all the work. So this weekend, he sat at my kitchen table for 3 hours on Saturday and 6 hours on Sunday doing next to nothing on this packet. By Sunday, my patience had gone out the window, and I started to raise my voice a bit about how he just needed to follow instructions and get the work done. At about this time he started complaining about a headache. My response? "Of course your head hurts, you've been staring at the same paper for hours. Now just do your work." Eventually it got to the point where nothing else was being done, he was beat, I was beat and I told him to just go outside and play, that he would face the consequences from his teacher and that if he failed 3rd grade, it would be because he wasn't doing his work (I know, a little extreme, but that is one of the reasons for the title of this post).
So after J comes in and gets ready for bed, he tells me again that his head still hurts. I reply it is "probably because you were stressed out over your homework", that "I'll email your teacher to let her know how long you worked on it and would she go over some of it today before the big test." He shrugs his shoulders and goes off to brush his teeth. Then he comes back and asks if I can take his temperature, since he thinks he might have a fever. I feel his head, cool to touch, and say "sure" to pacify him. Any guesses as to whether or not he had a fever (clue: title of post)?

100.9 F

So a low fever, but a fever nevertheless.

The award for worst mom of the week goes

Sunday, September 24, 2006

What if..

Recently here in Texas there was a shooting death of an officer during a "routine" traffic stop and arrest. While watching this breaking news, I got me thinking about what I would do if I was the spouse in this situation. This is a possibility not to far from reality, since hubby is in a law enforcement field, and does deal with some rather dangerous folks at times (he also deals with the relatively harmless loonies, but I digress). In fact, I have dreamed the scenario several times, with frighteningly realistic details.
I even have discussed this with some other wives I know whose husbands are also in the "business". We've debated over who would be best to have by your side when the news was broken to you, whether we would scream or just stare silently as we were told, would we move or keep the homes we are in, etc. I think I would just keep repeating, "No, no, no" and "go away" to the folks who came to tell me.
My hubby finds it a bit morbid, especially since it is his death I am contemplating, but I think of it as more of a realist's point of view. I may not be able to control other's actions, but I can be prepared when they influence my life. It is one of the reasons I refuse to carry any debt (other than house and car). I have a part time job, but it would not support us. Therefore, we need to be in the best financial situation before anything happens. If I were to loose my husband, I could not imagine loosing my home as well and therefore traumatizing my son even more so than he already would be. I'm lucky in that I would have options - I could stay where I am now or move back to the east coast where much of our family is located - but they are options I hope I never have to use.

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Human salvation lies in the hands of the creatively maladjusted.
- Martin Luther King, Jr.

I keep this in mind everytime I am asked to help out with a school project, either through PTO or through J's classroom.

Monday, September 18, 2006

So we are chickens?!?

During breakfast, J was telling me about different aninals who shed either fur, feathers, or skin. Then he got onto the odd facts about animals, ie. a bulls horns are made of the same materieal as a fingernail, etc. I admit I wasn't paying much attention until he started talking about how girls have eggs in them. What?!? Are they teaching him sex ed in 3rd grade? I looked up from laptop and listened a wee bit closer. The science teacher mentioned how girls have, to quote J, "eggs in them somewhere, I don't quite get where" and that one of the girls in his class blurted out "they we are just like chickens!" I may have to prepare that "where do babies come from speech" a little sooner than I thought.

Thursday, September 14, 2006

I survived too

I'm back from my doctor's visit, and the results were what I expected (which is a good thing). We'll have to wait on the blood work to make sure that I'm truly OK, but I am optimistic. Seems I had a cyst that decided to rupture, which is a rather painful experience. I also found out that I should not be developing them, but that I am one of the lucky 1 out of 100 who do. So, I can expect more joyful cysts to form and burst. I don't need to tell you how thrilled I was to hear that (the sarcasm would be dripping of my tongue if I was actually speaking to you right now). Funny thing is, my dear identical twin is going through the same thing, although hers hasn't burst yet. I've left her a message so she'll be ready for it when it happens.

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

I can see clearly now...

I am happy to report that J can see clearly, his eyesight is R 20/15, L 20/25. No need for glasses yet. More importantly, no need for surgery.
He's so funny when he gets his eyes dilated -he squirms and complains so much you would think the opthamologist is poking his eye out with a hot needle. Yes, it stings some, but he carries on quite a bit. Especially since this is the same child who tore off half a toenail when he caught it in a door and simple said "ouchy, ouchy" as he went off to ride his bike; landed on his face while skateboarding with just a "oomph", and in general toughs out most injuries that would have us adults limping and whining in pain.

Sunday, September 10, 2006

I remember

I remember...
sitting in my home in Connecticut, watching Sesame Street as I readied J for preschool.
Then the phone rang,
"What are you watching, change the channel, a plane flew into the World Trade Center"
There I sat, tears streaming down my face, poor J asking what was wrong.
I couldn't answer.
I dropped him off at school, went to work, and couldn't believe people where going about their daily business.
We had left NY but a few months before.
What of our friends, our neighbors, where they OK?
Can't reach them, the phones are busy, busy, busy.
Then the phone call from my Step-mother-in-law,
"Your father-in-law is there, he left for NY when the first plane hit. We haven't heard from him - the cell towers are down."
He was at ground zero, part of the rescue efforts
After a week or so, my brother-in-law went to do his service for his fellow firefighters.
Both of them have health problems that have developed since that day - connected, who knows.
One thing is for certain, I will remember and treasurer those who gave their lives for us, and their families and friends whose lives where forever altered.
I remember.

Saturday, September 09, 2006

Posting woes

Sorry I haven't been my usual witty self. I have several stories I'd like to share, but I just can't sit long enough to write them. Like Wally over at the Resident Curmudgeon, I've been a little under the weather. Also like Wally, I don't know the cause of my "illness", all I know is that there is much fatigue and pain involved with it. However, I am bowing to pressure and seeing a doctor on Thursday, hopefully to get some answers.
Besides that appointment, I get to take J to his appointment to find out if he'll need eye surgery again. We went through this when he was two, and I swore that I would never go through that again, that the sight of my baby unconscious on a hospital bed was so overwhelming that I literally could not stand, and almost fainted (me, the ex-EMT who has seen it all).
These doctor's appointments would be much easier to go through if hubby was around, unfortunately work has him on the eastern side of the states, far away from me. It always seems to work that way, doesn't it?

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Cafeteria woes

Last Friday I received once of those automated phone calls which usually are from a telemarketer or a doctor's office reminding you of your next appointment, informing me that my son's school lunch account was in the negative $9.80.
Hmm. My son takes his lunch to school everyday. He doesn't have an account with the school cafeteria. I check the school departments website to see what we are to do in a case like this, and see that all students are issued a "randomly generated pin, making it difficult for someone to gain access to the number". Oh really. After quizzing him to be sure that he has not been getting extra meals, I wrote a note and sent it on with him to school today. The note simply said that J takes his lunch everyday and has never used the cafeteria line for food. When I came home from work today, there was a message telling me that I was wrong, that my son was eating both breakfast and lunch everyday there and that they couldn't stop him from charging to his account. This is quite hum0rous, since J's bus gets there after the breakfast is done being served. Plus, he is a picky eater and wouldn't ever buy lunch. And lastly, my son does not lie to me! So when he tells me he has never charged to his account (which he did not even know existed), I believe him.
Tomorrow, I will go to the school, dragging J behind me, to ask the cafeteria manager if she recognizes my child, since she is insisting that he has served him breakfast and lunch everyday. I'm very curious to meet my son's doppelganger, whomever he may be.

UPDATE: We went to the school, the cafeteria lady finally acknowledged that she had never served my son, made all the others look at him so if someone was claiming to be him, they would know what the real J looked like. She also posted little notes on all the registers. We didn't get anymore automated calls, so I'm thinking it has been resolved. I'll keep you updated.

Saturday, September 02, 2006

Race for a Cure

As a birthday present to myself, I have signed up to do the Susan G Komen Race for the Cure on September 30th, which is on my actual birthday. What better way to celebrate than to do something meaningful?I've said many times that I wanted to run in a race and this is a worthy cause, and one that has closely affected my family, as it has affected many families. Everyone I speak to is either related to or knows somone who had had breast cancer. It affects women of all ages - I've personally know women in their 20's who've had this devasting diagnosis.

Luckily, there are many advances being made in research in this field, and everyday we are closer to a cure. If you feel like supporting my run, please click on the link below.


Tuesday, August 29, 2006


Something scary happened to me last night. I was in my bathroom, brushing my hair when I happened to look into the mirror and something caught my eye. It looked like one of my hairs was covered in paint, which is odd since I haven't painted in months. I looked more closely. Yes, there was definitely something odd about one of my hairs.

So I pulled it out to get a closer look. It first grey hair!!! For some of you this old hat, for me it is a bit frightful. You see, I've never been sure who's hair I have - my mom's or my dad's. The texture comes from mom, the color from dad. Mom's side doesn't go grey, Dad's side has stock in Clairol. Now I know. The question left is, how soon will it all go grey?

Sunday, August 27, 2006

Bit of a funk

Sorry I have not posted recently, the loss of the rabbit has put me into a bit of a funk. For those of you who do not know, Speckle was a house rabbit - he acted like a cross between a dog and a cat. He was litter box trained, would beg for treats and play chase. I could let him out in my flower garden for a little "outside time" with absolute confidence that he would come back, since he loved an air conditioned house. There were times when he would almost trip me in his efforts to get back inside. Every evening when he would be running around the house, at 10:30pm he would stop what he was doing to jump up on the couch to watch "Sex and the City" with me. I think he had a crush on Sarah Jessica Parker.
Even hubby has been upset, although for slightly different reasons. As he put it, "You know there is no love lost between me and that rabbitt, but I am sad that he is gone because it is making you sad." I've given up hope on him coming back - there was a strange cat pacing in front of my house the night he went missing.

Tuesday, August 22, 2006




Grey, White, and Black Rabbit

Will come to you if you offer a treat

upon return of rabbit

Friday, August 18, 2006

Truth or Dare

So, monkeyboy seems to be enjoying the 3rd grade; or more to the point, the two days of chaos that his 3rd grade education has consisted of up to this point. It's a new school and they are a little disorganized. In fact, the playground is currently a barbedwire-topped, fenced-in field of grass. There is no playground equipment. It is due to be delivered "any day now".

In the meantime, the children need to find ways to entertain themselves. When I asked J what he did at recess, he responded with "We play truth or dare." My mommy radar went up, as I remember the games of truth or dare I used to play, and I was readying a speech about what is appropriate and not appropriate actions at school when I asked him to give me an example of a truth and of a dare.
His Response:
"Our truths are crazy questions like, 'is it true you kissed a cow on the lips?'. Isn't that just crazy Mom?"

"What about the dares?" I asked

"One dare that my friend gave me was to run around the school with no clothes on. That is just so silly and ridiculous. I dared him to go to the top of the Statue of Liberty and jump off."

So I can get rid of the speech for now. I wonder if years from now he will remember this and realize just how innocent and naive he was.

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

1st day of school

J stated 3rd grade today.
His school runs from 8:45am - 3:45pm
His bus was late coming home.
He came home at 5:35pm.

Locks of Love

I'm currently growing my hair for Locks of Love and it is driving me crazy - an adult woman should not have have hair that is half way down her back. It can't be styled and it keeps getting caught in the car door and windows. I go to turn my head to check if it is clear to pull out onto a road, and yank, my head painfully snaps back. Nevermind that I shed like a cat and these long strands of brown hair turn up everywhere. It would be OK if it was just in the bathroom, but in that night's dinner? Ew!! What is really frustrating is that I keep running into friends whose daughters have recently cut their hair for the cause. "Oh, little Susie cut her hair and donated it. This is the third time she's been able to do it (and little Susie is only 7)" Why does it take so long for my hair to grow?

Seriously, I only have 2-3 more inches before I can cut the foot length off for which I've been aiming. I just have to be patient and realize that it goes to a good cause.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Meet the teacher

Is it fall? It sure seems like that to me. Why? Well, we were able to go to J's new school yesterday and meet his teachers for his new school year. It seems he goes to a new school every 2 years, either due to us moving or to the district growing too fast. So, we went and tried to figure our the layout of his school and where his classroom is, got to see some of his fellow classmates, and in general where able to get psyched about school.

I love the beginning of a school year, not because he'll be out of the house but because I am one of those strange folks who loved school as a child. I would get giddy with excitement, planning what to wear to school that first week and deciding what "necessities" I needed to pack into my backpack. As the grades progressed, I would even make plans on how I was to decorate my locker, trying to find the perfect magnets for whatever them I was going for that year (usually it was "clutter").

Unfortunately, J does not share my excitement, at least not to the same intensity. He's had too many problems switching schools and has a mental block when it comes to writing essays, something he has to do often in his Horizons program. However, I'm optimistic this year. I have a friend who is teaching the same grade and is next door (figuratively, they have open classrooms at his school) and she promises to let me know if I'm going to need a marguarita or some other stiff drink before J gets home from school. Plus, most of the staff seems eager to have a good year, let's just hope this impression is true.

Friday, August 11, 2006

School bells ring

This is the last weekend before the little guy has to go back to school. We have yet to officially find out who his teachers will be and the playground has yet to be released into its possession. I hope that happens soon, since the kids certainly are going to need somewhere to run off their extra energy. Of course, they probably won't be doing much running since it's going to be high 90's - 100's for their first week back. Thank goodness the school has air conditioning.

Sunday, August 06, 2006

Return to normal

My father returned J to us, after a three week vacation visiting his grandparents. From the sounds of things, he seems to have had a good time. My folks have mentioned making it a yearly event, since we no longer live within driving distance of them. I'll all for it - that would mean couples only vacations for us, which we enjoy; and bonding time for J with his grandparents.

Dad wanted to help around the house while he was here, which is normal for him. We did some lamp rewiring, and he fixed up my bike for me. He also wanted to mow our lawn while I was at work. When he asked if I would mind, I said "yes", since I figured my mom would not appreciate if he had a heart attack while he was here. You see, our lawn is composed of the thickest grass around which has a vine-like consistency, and it is an intense workout to mow the law since we do not have a self-propelled lawn mower. He assured me that he would only mow the front lawn, and only if he could breathe OK (remember, this is the man who just got out of the hospital a few months ago and has been using oxygen at night to breathe).

So I came home from work to the two strips of the side lawn cut and one line along the back fence. Dad's comment? "That lawn will kill you. I wouldn't mow that lawn ever again if I didn't have a self-propelled lawn mower"

Friday, August 04, 2006

Photos are fun

Now that I have ventured into the world of photo blogging, I must admit I am enjoying the extra dashed of color to my blog. It is something that I think I'll continue to do. Of course, that means I'll have to continue to take pictures, which is not something that I do very often. Perhaps one day you will see a picture of me on my blog. Or not. If I were to post it, it probably would not stay up for that long.

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Thems good eatin'

There were feral chickens all over the island. You could find them at the pool, on the beach, climbing the rocks near the waterfalls - everywhere. We spoke to a few locals who commented on how tasty and healthy they were. The theory is that since they are "free range" chickens, they stay lean and that means less fat for those who are eating them.
Our kayaking guide gave us a live demonstration on how to hypnotize a feral chicken. He grabbed one off the rocks, laid her on her back, and started stroking her underside. After a few minutes, he stopped stroking and released his grasp of the bird. She stayed flat on her back, as though invisible bonds were tying her to him. Bryson, our guide, finally flipped her over and sent her on her merry way.

Sunday, July 30, 2006

Cost of living

As we enjoyed our visit, we actually stopped to think what it would be like to live on the island permanently. We could open a Krispy Kreme (folks travel from island to island to get them)and have a successful life. Unfortunately, the cost of living would probably send us to the poor house. After visiting a few grocery stories on various islands we realized something: a gallon of milk, a 64 oz. container of Juicy Juice, a 12 pack of Coca-Cola all cost the same amount - $5 to $6 dollars apiece. Most of our staples were priced in the stratosphere. Even fresh fruits were expensive - bananas were $1.79/lb (as a comparison, I picked some up yesterday at our grocery store for $.39/lb), and they grow them there!
The things that were more reasonably priced were actually the Asian influenced goods. Thinks like pickled plums, dried spicy cuttlefish, dried scallops, and many things I did not recognize.
Housing was also pricey. One person we met who had just moved to the island 3 months ago told us about some of the places she had come across - a 500 sq. ft. apartment which was a dug out basement in someone's home, where the bathroom was not attached to the apartment, was $900. Yikes!!

Saturday, July 29, 2006

View on the right is our hotel's pool/beach area.

Some pics of paradise

As promised, here are some pictures from my trip. They can't capture the utter peace one feels when viewing the scenary, but they will have to do.


I'm back, although rather reluctantly. The wedding/tropical vacation was absolutely wonderful and I may even attempt to post some picture, although I am still on "island time" so don't hold your breath. Our hotel was located right on the beach, with it's five pools practically touching the sand. Often we would take a dip in the pool then head out to the sea for a dip in the Pacific. The weather was beautiful - mid 80's with a lovely island breeze. We hiked, kayaked, snorkled and swam to our hearts content. Lest I forget the main reason we went, the wedding was simple and refined. The bride looked as though she had just stepped out of a bridal magazine, she was so beautiful. It was wonderful watching the ceremony, her legs rocking slightly with nerves as her groom held her hands and steadied her nerves.

Hubby and I laughed more than we have in a long time, and it felt good just to relax with him by my side. We went out almost every night with different members of the wedding party, often closing down the bar we went to (not a tough job since it closed at midnight and we often didn't arrive until after 10 pm.). We were able to get to know the groom much better and he seems to be a good choice for my sister-in-law.

Wednesday, July 19, 2006


Vacation checklist:

Lawn mowed so folks won't suspect that our home is abandoned - check
Laundry done so that we actually have clothes to put in the suitcases - check
Shopping done for clothes that actually fit after shrinking some in the wash - check
Haircuts done so that the family pictures at the wedding will be presentable - check
Rabbit packed up and ready to be delivered to the sitters - check
Itinerary printed out in duplicate, so hubby has one to keep safe and I have one to keep for pulling out and double checking and eventually losing - check
Extra spending money, though probable not enough - check
Ability to relax - not there yet, but give me a few drinks near the pool and I just might get there.


Monday, July 17, 2006


Not good - I've got some intestinal bug that is clearing rooms, to say the least, and I leave for vacation in two days...on a long plane ride...with two bathrooms for hundreds of people... with no ventilation. I apologize in advance to my fellow travelers.
The bright side: the dress I was debating to wear because it was a wee bit snug won't be snug anymore.

Friday, July 14, 2006

Time flies

The boy has been at his grandparents since Monday, and the house is oddly quiet without him. I find myself turning to the rabbit for my daily dose of silliness and I must say Speckle is not doing a good job of filling in for J. I had thought that with J gone I would get to relax and enjoy the time, but I'm finding that I've filled it with work instead since I don't have to worry about rushing to pick him up from daycare. Plus, with my vacation starting next Wednesday, I want to have everything in order before we leave. Time is going by too quickly.

Saturday, July 08, 2006

Birthday party

Well, we had the boy's birthday laser tag party today. It went well, but not for lack of trying on fate's behalf. What do I mean? Well, let me rant for a moment.

My boy's birthday is July 4th, Independence Day, a national holiday and prime time for family vacations. So every year when we have his party, we have to contend with his friends often being out of town on vacation. I usually plan his party 3 weeks in advance (this year it was only 2 weeks)so as to give everyone time to check their plans and RSVP accordingly. I always warn J that there is a good chance that many people will not show, to not expect a big turnout.

With that said, I do everything in my power to get a correct count of whom is coming to the party. This year we did evites to many, some mailed invitations and a few hand delivered. There were 11 children invited. Two RSVP'd early that they'd be out of town. Fine. Several viewed the invite, but didn't give a response. A few checked "maybe" and that they would get back to me. On Friday, July 1st, I called the folks whose phone numbers I knew and who had yet to view the invitation to see if they were coming. By last night, we had 5 definites coming, three who never RSVP'd but had assured J they were coming and 1 maybe, with a possibility of 2 extras (siblings), which would have been great. Then this morning came around.

The maybe never confirmed her plans and a call to her home made me rule out her son and the 2 siblings.

I checked the evite one last time - one child who supposed to come, the one my son was most excited about, was not coming - he was going to be out of town. I had talked to the father of this child last Friday and had stressed how happy J would be if Missing boy would come, that the party was going to be small since so many were out of town. This parent has my email address, the evite address, my phone number and my regular address. This parent had to wait until last minute (sometime last night after 10pm) to respond to the evite with a no.

Then another parent called to say that her hubby had come home the night before with tickets to the ballgame and that they had the opportunity to meet Roger Clemens. Since both father and son are rabid baseball fans, I understood why they were canceling, but I was disappointed, especially since this same parent had had a party once where only 2 children showed up and it had hurt her son's feelings quite a bit. They promised to make it up by having a fun day together with the 2 boys later in the summer.

That left three definite kids coming, and that included the birthday boy. What would we do if no one else showed? How do you explain to your child that just because someone says they are coming that it doesn't mean they actually can come. It was breaking my heart this morning. I can't protect my son from everything, but I should be able to give him a birthday that he can enjoy. Luckily, 2 children (they are siblings) who did not RSVP were able to come, and several parents stayed so that the party at least seemed full. Plus the dads that came behaved like the 8 year olds, so laser tag was fun. I just wish people would RSVP by the date listed on the invite. Is that too much to ask for?

Thursday, July 06, 2006

Culture conversion

The Boy: Hey mom, I started off living in the smallest state (RI) and we moved around and now I'm in the largest state. Cool, huh?

Me: Well, actually Alaska is the largest state.

Boy: But we've got more people

ME: I know, but it is still the largest state. Texas is the largest state in the continental US. You know, Texas actually wanted to be its own nation at one point.

Boy: Cool. It should be. It's the best state. You know, I think I want to be a Texan forever.

The conversion continues. My son has immersed himself in Texan culture, even affecting a "cowboy" accent at times (at those time we have no idea what he is saying - it is a combination drawl and mumble). It seems all the advertising has worked its magic on him. This is the only state that I have ever lived in where the car commercials reference the state rather than the country, ie. "Bigger in Texas, better in a Dodge; Ford: built Texas tough". There are even special edition trucks that you can only get in Texas, because they are made for Texas only.

I don't know why it bothers me so much, other than the fact that I would like my son to have a more cosmopolitan view on life, rather than the provincial one he is developing from living in this state

Saturday, July 01, 2006

Birthday boy

Well, it is almost July 4th, which means the boy turns another year older. My soon to be 8 year old was telling us what he would like for his birthday dinner [birthday person chooses whatever (within reason) they want for his/her birthday dinner]. He said something frightening to us native Yankees - "I want a Texas dinner." What is a Texas dinner? No it is not rattlesnake or armadillo, at least not in my son's mind. All it is is steaks and potatoes on the grill along with corn-on-the-cob and a nice fresh salad. This is actually the birthday meal my husband normally picks out, but the fact that the boy calls it a "Texas dinner" is a little scary. He is slowly losing his northern roots and becoming a "Texan".

Friday, June 30, 2006

Home show

Last night I hosted my very first home show. As you all probably already know, home shows are where you have someone come in and give a demonstration about a product line and then wait for you guests to order stuff so that you can earn free products. Normally I am opposed to hosting parties, since I feel uncomfortable asking my friends to pretty much fund my desire for new things. But this jewelry just caught my eye - it's sterling silver with semi-precious gemstones. It's called Silpada jewelry and I just wanted it all, which is highly unusual for me.

So, I had the party and it was actually painfree. There was no presentation to sit through, the jewelry was just out for you to try on and admire. By the time the party was done, I actually earned myself $250 worth of free jewelry. Which means I was able to get some stuff for me and some birthday presents.

I also realized that I can have company over and even in my crowded living room we can have fun. For me this is a big step, since I have felt uncomfortable about having a group of "strangers" (folks who don't visit me often) hang out in my home. (I have an inferiority complex when it comes to the size of my home - in Texas everything is bigger, even the houses). I might even have hubby invite work friends and their wives over for a night of socializing.

**I've put up a link in case you want to check out the jewelry. I won't get anything from it, but I really think it is gorgeous. The catalogue does not due the jewelry justice - it is 100% prettier in person.***

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Downward dog

I power yoga now.
Well, I've done it twice.
The last time the class was cut short.
I was glad.
When I topple over, I do it in slow-motion, in an almost graceful motion.
I know this from watching myself in the wall length mirror that is in the yoga classroom.
If nothing else, I will get a good cardio workout from laughing so hard.
As will my fellow classmates if they are watching me.

CLARIFICATION: Power yoga is like regular yoga, only you move quickly from pose to pose instead of holding in one stance for a long period of time.

Cardboard vs. plastic

I was getting ready to pour myself a large glass of juice the other day when I realized just how extraneous some "improvements" on products can be. What am I talking about? The plastic pour spout on 1/2 gallon cardboard juice or milk containers. I'm not quite sure what the thought process is behind this improvement; perhaps the developers felt it makes pouring juice easier, I don't know. What I do know is that it makes it so the container is not recyclable. The joining of plastic and cardboard make it so they can't pe put in the cardboard bin and they can't be put in the plastic bin either.
My other problem with this improvement - you can't get all the juice out. There is always some juice sloshing around on the bottom and no matter how you tilt the container, it stays stuck in it. Now you can just open up either side of the cardboard, but that would be the old-fashioned way of doing things. Next thing you know, we'd be back to opening the container in this fashion from the very start which would send the manufacturer into a tizzy. There might be an uprising with consumers demanding that the old way be returned. Think of the savings if they didn't add that piece of plastic to each container! True, we would still have those individuals who open both ends of the container because they forget to follow the directins of "open this end", but overall it would be an improvement. Admit it, we've all had that plastic seal break off in our hands at least once, or pulled so hard that some of the juice sloshed out onto the floor!

Yup, back to the old ways for me. Either that or I can just stick to coffee as my morning beverage of choice.

Saturday, June 24, 2006

Bathing suit battles

I'll be traveling to Hawaii in July for a wedding. While there, we'll be spending much time by the pool and in the ocean. Since there will be all these water activities, I feel I probably should search for a bathing suit, one that is both fashionable and flattering. I dread this search. I have had the same bathing suit for 7 years, and the best way to describe it in one word is "sturdy". It is a classic one-piece suit that has held up quite well to the trials and tribulations related to swimming with a toddler.

However, since I'll be child-free for this vacation, I would like a bathing suit that reflects this. Yet, my search as of yet has been a failure. It seems that any time I look for a new suit, there is never my size. If it is a bikini, I'll find a size 2 top and a size 16 bottom. If perhaps I was looking for a clown outfit, this would work, but since actually want something that flatters me, I keep searching. Then there are the one piece suits. Always when I find my size and then try the suit on, I am soon made to realize that it is an extra-long waisted style. (I'm short-waisted, which for those of you who don't understand what this means that when I try on pants, they come up to my armpits. My rib-cage ends below my bellybutton.)So with those bathing suits, the crotch is down to my knees. Again, not very flattering.

Worst of all, I actually have a bathing suit pictured in my mind, in both a one-piece and a two-piece style. Great you say, just find it and order it from on-line. Small problem there - I've never actually seen this bathing suit. It is a figment of my imagination. It does not really exist, which will make purchasing it rather difficult. Oh well, I'll just have to continue looking.

Monday, June 19, 2006

Rain, rain, go away....

OK, we have been under drought warning for the last year or so, with rainfall at a severe shortage. That ended today. We are offically above normal. Which makes sense, since some areas of town got 10 inches of rain today, with more to come in the following days.

I've been told that the flooding is as bad as when Tropical storm Allison struck 5 years ago. There were even alligators swimming in the flood waters. All I know is that the ride to work today was an adventure. As the boy sat in the backseat saying repeatedly, "hey it's like we're going through another car wash mom" as the waves (yes, waves) of water from oncoming cars swamped our car. We were lucky that we didn't get stranded in the middle (or side) of the road.

I know you are not supposed to travel through water that is higher the curb, but where are you suppossed to turn around when there are no driveways and there are drainage ditches that you can no longer see on the side of the road? At least I learned my lesson partially - I'll take the main road tomorrow. Maybe we'll be lucky and have a rain day tomorrow.

Saturday, June 17, 2006


So many times I post when things upset me, today I had to post some of the positive in my life.

Thursday was my 11th wedding anniversary, and I was pleasantly surprised by my husband. As you know from reading past posts, hubby is not known for his romanticism. I know he loves me, but he is not the traditional "romantic". So imagine my surprise when I see the flower delivery guy come to my work. Flowers at work again? (see Valentine's Day post for last time's efforts)My co-workers all start saying how romantic he is, sending me flowers for all these holidays. I start choking on my spit becuase I'm laughing so hard. I explain to them out the 11 years we've been married, I think I can count on one hand how many times I've had flowers delivered to me. This is an oddity, not a commonplace occurance. The flower arrangement is odd - there are 12roses- 11 red roses and one orange one sticking up along with some filler flowers. Since I'm also dealing with a migraine, the significance does not strike me as of yet.

Later on at home, my sweetie gives me my gift - a beautiful cedar trellis for my rose bushes. This is exactly what I wanted! As he explains it, he would have put the delivered roses on it, but couldn't figure out how to get it to me. Isn't that sweet?

So who would like to guess why my dozen roses where different colors? Anyone? 11 for the years we've been married, and one to grow on.

Saturday, June 10, 2006

What to keep and what to give away

My mother and I often discuss what my parents would like us children to do if they become terminally ill or if they pass away. That may sound morbid, but we are practical women and like to have plans set so that when a life changing event occurs, we have something to fall back on. We are the eternal realists, not optimists.

One thing we discuss is what is to happen to the houseful of furniture, knicknacks, tools, etc. that have accumulated over the years despite my best efforts of trying to get my parents to "clear the clutter". We children all live thousands of miles away and I shudder to think of having to pack and move those material goods. Most likely we would sell the stuff at an estate auction. But what would we keep? Is there anything so valuable to us that we would be willing to pack and ship it across the country?

Of course there is. The topmost thing on the list would be the photographs, decades worth of memories stored in old cardboard boxes, half with no name or date on them so it is anyone's guess whether the boy in the picture is Uncle David or little Danny. How do you divy up pictures? Does the person in the picture maintain material rights to it? What about in cases like mine, where my twin is in 98% of the photos with me? Let's put this one aside and go on with the list.

Each of us children do want one of the pieces of furniture my father has crafted over the years. Since we know the history behind each piece, not only is it a fine piece of furniture but it is also a bit my father's legacy. My sister and I have been lucky because dad has made things specifically for us and our homes, so even though we may all want the Shaker cabinet he crafted, I don't think there will be hard feeling by those who don't get it, since we already have something from dad.

What of mom? What would I want that would forever bring back found memories of my dear mom? She is a strong, stubborn, capable woman who has not had yet found a creative outlet for her talents. Perhaps some of her recipes, so that each time I prepeare one, I would fondly remember a dinner she created. Since dried out chicken was her specialty when I was growing up, maybe this is not such a good idea.

Perhaps something mom and dad made together. When we were toddlers, they often took to creating "one project wonders", where they would tackle a project complete and so they could say they did it and then be done with idea forever. They took our outgrown clothes and fashioned a colorful patchwork quilt out of them, handstiching the entire thing. My brother came into possesion of it (how, I do not know) and I believe still has it in the trunk of his car, for cold weather emergencies or warm weather picnics.

I am lucky in that I have an example of some of their handiwork. They did a large "paint-by-number" fabric painting with special fabric pens that were popular in the late '70's. After they were done with their "painting", dad hand-made the frame in which it hangs today in my living room. It is a very folk art type of painting, one that brings admiration from all who see it and awe when they realize it was done by my parents. It is the one material possesion (other than photographs) that I swore I would take with us last year when it looked as thought we were to be hit by hurricane Rita.

So that brings me to this question, what would you keep if you had the choice of only one thing (and it can't be photographs)?

Thursday, June 08, 2006

Dancing for joy and general musings

I'm doing a dance of joy today. I was able to have my treasurer's audit and pass off all my PTO nonsense. I love helping out my son's school, but the treasurer position was too time consuming for me, and the pressure to keep the financials correct did not help either.

I also get a day off tomorrow, the first in 2 weeks. It has been our busy time and we had several people out due to surgeries. Arrgh! I do have to work the weekend, but it is just a sales assistant job to sell homes. I get paid to sit for most of the day, catching up on my reading. Every once and awhile someone will come in, but then I get to socialize. Anyone looking for a house? Last weekend I got to help sell a $441,0000 house at a steal for $402,000. Pocket change, right? :)

Tomorrow the boy and I will just sleep in, relax, and maybe go swimming. What you should do on a summer day.

Not a very exciting post, but I didn't want you to think I was forgetting about you, my loyal readers.

Friday, June 02, 2006


You know it is summer in Southern Texas when...
you cut the grass on Friday and it needs cutting again on Sunday
you hang clothes out to dry and they still are wet three days later
you walk outside and you are instantly drenched and there is not a cloud in the sky
the humidity gets so thick that when you use the airconditioning in the car, ice crystals form on the windshield.

Monday, May 29, 2006


by Monkeyboy

ferocious, extinct
eating, attacks, chases
the huge, hungry T-Rex

(My 7 1/2 y.o.'s early start on a writing career)

Sunday, May 28, 2006


My husband, although a very loving man, is not a spontaneous man. So when I said that I wanted to do something fun this long weekend, I honestly did not expect to get a response. Imagine my surprise yesterday when hubby told me to pack an overnight bag and to be ready to leave the house by 10am.

He would give me no clues, only that it would take a few hours to get where we were going so everyone should use the facilities before we leave. The boy had no clue either, and was insistently attempting to get any information out of hubby as to where we were going.

After 21/2 hours we ended up at the Innerspace caverns. These are underground caverns that were discovered years ago when highway workers were determining if the ground was stable enough for the highway that was going through that area. It is a "living" cavern, so the rock formations are still growing. It was quite an amazing site. We would loved to have done the adventurer tour, it last 2 1/2 hours and you get to in more areas of the cavern, but you have to be 18 for that and the boy is just 7 1/2. Maybe we'll come back when he is visiting his grandparents for a month up north.

We also visited the capitol of the state and it was rather impressive. The layout of the capitol building in the city has it so that the main thoroughfare leads right to the central walkway into the capitol building. I was amazed that it was open on a Saturday, but I guess it is because it is a historical monument as well, dating back to the early 1800's. It was interesting to read the various plaques on the monuments - there were some bitter feelings still when the monument to honor those that fell during the Civil War war built. There was an underlying tone of "northeners are scum of the earth". No need to worry, we didn't take it personally.

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Rollerskates vs.Rollerblades

"You can only be young once. But you can always be immature."
-Dave Barry

My son was invited to a rollerskating party the other night. I was excited to take him, since he has never gone skating before. It went along as most children's parties do; with the adults mulling together and cringing as the children crashed into each other or used the wall as their brakes. I commented "someone is going to go home with a broken bone." Some of us parents who rollerblade extensively thought it would be fun to get out and skate as well. I decided to go "old school" and got the rollerskates instead of rollerblades.

We skated around and the children had races to see who was the fastest. Then the birthday girl wanted to see the parents race. No problem. We lined up, waited for the signaland....go! I want to point out right from the start that several of my competition had rollerblades on, which are much easier to manuever in. However, I was in the lead for 9/10ths of the race.

We came into the last curve, last 5 feet of the race. I don't know what happened, but all of a sudden I was falling, with a one point landing right on my elbow. I sat stunned for a moment as the "referee" shouted out 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place winners. Then the pain set in. Whew, I could barely speak. Needless to say, I sat out for the rest of the night, with ice on my elbow hoping that I would get some sensation back into my arm. The landing seemed to turn off my arm - I couldn't lift it or rotate my hand.

We went home, I went to the emergency room. The admitting clerk at the hospital laughed when I told him what I did to get me the visit to emergency room. He said two of his co-workers did the same thing with equally disasterous results - a broken elbow for one and a cracked kneecap for the other. 3 series of X-rays later and a presciption for pain medicine, I was sent home with the diagnosis of nothing broken, just a deep contusion (yes, I am a little disappointed - that much pain should have guaranteed me a cast).

I've gotten most of the movement and strength back in my arm (it is at 90%). I've got two huge bruises - one on my elbow and the other on my pride!!

Monday, May 15, 2006


Growing up I was raised as an Episcopalian, although my family was very "WASP". You knew you were loved, but there was not much affection in my house. We were emotionally removed from each other. My family went to church regularly until I was in 2nd grade, then we went for the important holidays, that is until we moved the summer before 5th grade. They we stopped going all together, although mom would occasionally take we three siblings to a Baptist church or synagogue or Pentecostal church, etc. so we could be exposed to all religions and so we could make our own "choice" when we grew older.

Around this same time, several close relatives passed away (2 grandparents and an aunt). I remember being distraught over the death of my aunt, distant over the death of one grandparent, and altogether emotionally removed when the third died. I think it is at this point in my life when I decided to no longer believe in God.

I remember sitting in the church during my grandfather's wake, listening to the priest mangle his nickname and screw-up the children's' names and relations. I looked around, saw the packed church, and started to laugh. I don't why, but absurdity of the moment just struck me. All the people gathered had not been close in my grandfather's life (as far as I knew), they didn't know me from Eve, yet they were crying as though they actually missed him. To my young mind, this was wrong.

We moved shortly after that and my family went through a readjustment period that was not good. Again, where was the "almighty support" that I needed? There was none. I grew older and chose archaeology as my profession. The scientific, rational world became my choice of reality. In my hands, I held objects that were older than anything in the bible, and could scientifically be proven so. In my young 20's, I found religion laughable. Only unsophisticated folks believed in God (remember, I know everything at this point in my life, or at least I think so). I couldn't understand how some of my friends could go to church regularly, especially with the way they lived their lives. They were hypocrite. I tried going, but felt oddly out of place, like everyone could see I was "faking it".

In my late 20's; far from home in a different country, with husband away defending our country, I envied those around me who had their religion. I wanted to be able to place my faith in a superior being who would make everything alright, or at least have a purpose for the hurt and sorrow that was around us. Again, I couldn't believe in God. I wished I could, but I just couldn't.

Now in my thirties, I still desire a belief. I have a son who is being raised a "heathen" (my mother's words). I know the value of a religious education, it is ingrained in our culture (Easter, Christmas, words like crucified, etc.), and yet I do not believe. With what my dad just went through, I would love to have had a faith to fall back on for support. But I don't. My question to you: "How can you make an unbeliever believe?"

Friday, May 12, 2006


Thanks to everyone for their positive thoughts during the past stressful week. Dad is out of the hospital, although not fully recovered, it looks good. This has made me reflect on my beliefs/lack of beliefs and made me look into why I feel the way I do. I had some self-discovery which I'll post about later on.

Thursday, May 11, 2006


Dad is still in the hospital. It looks like he has a blood infection on top of the pneumonia. They think he may have gotten the infection from a "dirty stick", by which I mean the injection site of the IV was not cleaned properly before they inserted the needle. Little guy is sending a "get well" card to his Papa. He made sure to enlose $1 since they do that for him when he is sick and it always makes him happy. I wasn't allowed to see the actual note - it was taped up into a small little package. If Papa can open it (it's a big if - there is about a roll of tape on this 2x2in square) he's sure to smile.

Tuesday, May 09, 2006


I know Mother's Day is this Sunday, but I want to blog about my dad. You see, he's in the hospital and it worries me. He helped my brother move about a week ago, and decided to stay with my sister for another week to help her around the house, to work on her "to-do" list (she's a single mom and does not have time to fix all the little things that go wrong in an old house). Well, while out visiting, he got sick with a sinus infection. Only he let it go and it turned into pneumonia. For most people, that would be bad but not too worrisome. For my dad, it can be a death sentence. He has emphysema.

Yes, he did get emphysema from smoking. He smoked for decades. No matter what we did, what we said, we couldn't get him to quit. Then he found out he was going to be a grandfather and a light went off in his head. He wanted to be around to see his grandson grow, to teach him all the bad habits that grandparents can since it's not their child. So he quit and hasn't smoked for almost 8 years.

When my son is around my dad or even just talking to him on the phone, the inevitable "silly Papa" will be spoken at least once, usually more often than that. Papa is the one who wears furniture arm protectors on his head like a hat; who plays tackle with his grandchildren; who insists that he is the young one, that Nana is the "old lady"; who willing walks through the woods to go "exploring" with his grandson. In fact, he has a list of things he's planning for when the little guy visits this summer.
I just hope he physically able to do everything he wants to do. My "fun" grandfather died when I was the same age as my son is now. To this day, I miss him. There are so many things in my life that I wish I could have shared with him. I don't want my son to have to go through that, not yet

Sunday, May 07, 2006


Have you ever wondered what a cow feels when he is branded? It doesn't look too painful; but then again, cows are not know to have very intelligent expressions. I bring this up not because I really care about cows, but because I think I know the answer: nothing at first, but then some serious "burning" pain.
I can say this since I managed to brand myself at work. "How?" you ask. Well, that new employee needed some help with our shrink wrap machine. For those of you who do not know what a shrinkwrap machine looks like, it basically has a role of plastic that sets on a stand. There is also a hairdryer like attachment which is used to "shrink" the plastic. The metal nozzle of this apparatus points outward. Remember that, it'll come up again later on.
My new employee, while she listens does not remember everything that she is told, which is understandable being that she is new on the job. She was standing in front of the shrinkwrap machine, standing there, and she asked me to show her once again how to do it. So, since I can't reach through her, I have to reach from the side. The side with the hairdryer attachment. The attachment that had not been used yet that day, or so I thought. I reach over and feel my upperarm press against it. Only, my new employee; well, she had attempted to use the machine. Several times. My arms flesh stuck to the hairdryer attachement. I took a deep breath in, said "excuse me, I need to go put some water on this" and walked away. After I came back from the ladies room, with my spanking new oval brand, she just kind of shrugged her shoulders and said something along the line of these things happen. Not a reaction I would expect when you've just injured your coworker. Most everyone else's reaction has been a little stronger from the "did you scream, I would have" to "that's going to scar".
It's growing on me. I always wanted a cool tatoo, a cool scar wouldn't be bad. It only hurts when my shirt rubs it, and it is shortsleeve weather here, so I'm good.

Friday, May 05, 2006

spring fever

It's finally May, school is almost out (last day May 24), and I have a "I don't give a ---- attitude" towards anything related to my son's school.
This year was the first year where I held a board position for the PTO. Today I received feedback that would have been helpful back in August, but is useless for me now. There has also developed "cattiness" towards the end, which I'm not comfortable with - I am a "settle your problem face-to-face" kind of gal. The migraines this has caused I am not willing to endure anymore. It has been more work than I thought it would be, and not something I am anxious to repeat. So, in two short weeks I get to hand off all the headaches to someone else. Yea!!
I love volunteering, but I don't want the responsibility anymore. So I will be uber-volunteer, but no more.

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

job update

It looks like my co-worker will continue working with us (yay). Unfortunately, it was a rather bitter pill for her to swallow when she realized that the higher ups were questioning her integrity. As she put it, "I guess I won't be going very far in this company - they're will always be something in the back of their minds, questioning whether or not I am loyal". The sad thing is, she is incredibly loyal.

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

work woes

Things are about to get heated up at my work. We are approaching one of the busiest times of the year for us, we just had someone quit with absolutely no notice, and now we have an "ethics" issue to face. My coworker happens to have a relative that just opened the same type of business as us but one block down the street. This coworker did tell my boss before the competitor opened that it was her brother and has tried to stay out of any business that we have dealing with this competitor, so as not to appear influenced or biased by the competitor.
Well, it seems my boss never passed this information on to the powers above him. Yesterday we received a call from our regional manager, asking what the heck was going on, that he had received a call from the college that we work with that there was a conflict of interest going on at the store. My poor coworker was in tears - she had done her job, had reported to her supervisor that there was a possible conflict, but my boss chose not to do anything. Now whether or not he did this because he knew the results would be if he did report it, I don't know. I don't know what his reasoning was, since he was out yesterday, golfing. So today I get to go and find out if we lost one most loyal employees or not.

Sunday, April 23, 2006

Field Day

My son has field day at his school, the one day a year where the children are actually allowed to play for an extended amount of time with no worries about studies. Each classroom is assigned a "spirit color". Since there are about 10 second grade classes, the color choices are limited and one class will get stuck with a tough color, a color like purple. Now those of you who have girls probably are saying "What's the big deal?", purple is a popular color. It is - for girls. For boys, not so popular. In fact, I've been to several stores looking for a simple purple tee for a boy and have not found one. They have pink, turquoise, peach, but no purple. I decided that I would just dye a white tee shirt purple, maybe make it tie die. The boy was adamantly against this idea. Actually, he was adamantly against any purple tee.
Now, I'm not one to pressure him on clothing choice. In fact, most days he looks like a blind hobo when he walks out the door with the choices he makes in clothing. However, I know that as soon as he gets to school he'll want to have a purple shirt like everyone else in his class. I know from experience - the last two years of field day.
So, I was still going to die the shirt and stuff it into his backpack so he would have it when he went to school and changed his mind. We happened to go to a sport shop to look for a birthday gift for his dad who needed some new work out clothes. Dad happens to like the Armour line of work out clothes - they are a tight fitting, spandex/lycra combo type of clothing. We picked out a new shirt for his dad - there was purple as a choice. Hmm. Let's check the kids section son.
Sure enough, they have the same style shirt in kids sizes. I mention he could try it on, but don't worry if you don't like it. He tries it on, is a bit self conscious (it is tight fitting). When I mention that it's more of a running shirt, it's ok that it doesn't fit; he tells me that he'll be running, maybe we could get the bigger size.
The power of dad. A shirt which would never have been considered if it weren't for the fact that his dad wears the same one. The superpowers of dad.

Friday, April 21, 2006

Green, green, green

Today, being my day off, is the day I would normally tackle the lawn. I have yet to mow it since last time, when I had no gas, fugitively and literally. I went out and bought the additive for the weed whacker, made sure there was enough gas for both lawnmower and weedwhacker and was all set to mow today. But then...I forgot to turn the sprinklers off. The grass is soaked. It would normally dry by midmorning (our temps. have been in the low 90's). But we also got rain showers; drenching, soaking, lightening-inducing rain. There is a lovely little river running from my backyard to the street. I don't think I'm mowing today either. Instead, I'm going to watch the jungle that was once my lawn grow even more.

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Comings and goings

Hubby was able to come home this weekend in between business trips. It was nice to have him home again. He was suppososed to leave again on Wednesday to a foreign country, but that country is currently having a coup, and the powers that be decided that it would be bad to send people into a country that everyone else is fleeing at the moment. So that trip was cancelled.
Unfortunately, he still has to go on another trip. His grandmother passed away yesterday and he needs to be with the family for the wake and funeral. It is a sad event, but not completely unexpected.
His grandmother chose (I truly believe this) to die exactly three years to the day that her husband died. She had been preparing herself and her family for some time now. She's been giving away things and saying that there was nothing left for her to do on this planet. Then she took a very sudden unexpected bad turn in health and things went downhill rather quickly. I don't know how, but she just knew it was her time to go. We'll miss her.

Saturday, April 15, 2006

Vacation plans

I'm finally done. I've been making plans for Hawaii in a rather piecemeal fashion for the last few months. My sister-in-law is getting married there in July. It will be a small wedding, as my husband's family is in no way wealthy and I do not think the groom's side is either. The ceremony is on the island of Kauai, which is supposed to be a very beautiful, relaxing, tropical paradise. We're making the trip into our 10 year anniversary get away as well. It may be a year late, but we never celebrate on the actual day anyway.
We'll be able to socialize with the other adults without worrying about anyone's bedtime besides our own. Hubby and I are going sans child, as I feel that the boy will not appreciate the wonders of the island and therefore does not warrant the cost of the trip. He gets to go to his grandparents house, for quality time and activities that he will find much more enjoyable than staring at sunsets - fun stuff like fort building, fishing, and silly time with cousins. My sister-in-law is disappointed; but hey, she is not paying for the trip!

Thursday, April 13, 2006

Silent birth

Silent birth and Scientology. It's been in the entertainment news a lot lately, with many an opinion given over whether or not it is a good idea. I've thought back to my son's birth and wondered if I would have liked to have gone the "scientology way" with the delivery.
Let me clarify that - I could not have gone complete, no spoken word - I had previously undiagnosed serious complications that had to be talked about during the delivery. However, because of these complications, I was not allowed to take the route of epidurals and painless bliss. Yet, I did not scream during delivery. In fact, I kept shushing people - the doctor counting to ten (he counted to slow everytime), hubby counting and talking (shh - just hold my hand), and I found the noise of the nurses disturbing. I've also been in several delivery rooms, and all the noise from the various relatives and friends who were there is distracting and not helpful. So this point I have to cede to the Scientologists.
(Does this mean I have to like Tom Cruise now?)
Scientology suggests that the noise of birth can be disturbing for the child and that years later some of what was said during birth might resurface from the subconscience and cause repricussions. I don't agree with that. If you are told to "push, push" in delivery, years later when you tell your child to "push, push" a toy, I doubt he will experience pyschologial trama from the resurfacing memories. I don't believe any memories at that birth will resurface.
I like the idea of a quiet birth (I did not say silent), but not the Scientology reasoning behind it. So, I believe I can continue with my distain of all that is Tom Cruise with a clear conscience.

Monday, April 10, 2006

Things that shouldn't need explaining...

Things that shouldn't need explaining, but do to a 7 year old:

Juice pouches once opened can not be stored back in their lunch kit. They will leak all over binders, backpacks, and couch seats.

Saturday, April 08, 2006

spring cleaning

It's a beautiful day out - the sun is shining, it's in the low 70's, perfect for doing lawnwork. Let me go to the shed, pull out the huge box of outdoor toys (the box which is made of leftover plywood from the hurricanes, the box which weighs more than the entire shed and gives splinters at the merest brush of flesh against it), wiggle the lawnmower out of its corner. Start it up, well try. Nearly rench my arm out of it's socket as I continously pull the start string. Finally get it going, only to run out of gas. No problem, I'll just refill the tank with the spare - oh it's empty. It's blade needs to be sharpened anyway and I can't figure out if clockwise or counterclockwise to loosen it.
Well, I'll weedwhack instead. After throwing the weedwhacker to the ground out of frustration (you need longer arms than mine to use it's start string), realize it's out of gas as well. It's spare tank is too. Deep breath in, deep breath out. Maybe I'll just sit and enjoy my flowers. The grass will be here tomorrow.

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Hectic life

Things are a little crazy around here. Hubby is away on business, pretty much through the first week of May. All the end of year activities for my son's school are cycling into high gear, which means I'm busier than usual. I'm back on my regular work schedule, with no more days off until July. On top of that, my friend went back into the hospital today, with more complications from the birth of her second daughter. So, if I post more infrequently than usual, you know why.

Friday, March 31, 2006

Karma gives back

As you know, I volunteer at my son's school on Fridays. I also volunteered yesterday to help out with spring portraits. I come prepared, spray bottle full of water to knock down those crazy cowlicks. I know as a parent I would like to have the best picture possible of my child and I tried to make that happen for them yesterday. We have over 1400 students at my son's school, so I helped quite a few of them put on their best smile.

Today, as I was wandering the halls, I had the pleasant surprise of "random hugging". As I went into classrooms, I'd be surprised by little arms going around my waist with a sweet hug for me. I don't know these children, but I helped their classes yesterday and they certainly seemed to like me! I'm glad they feel comfortable in giving me those hugs - I might not know their names, but I do care for my little friends.

Then when I checked my email this afternoon (the one time I don't check my email in the morning), I was notified that I had won $100 from a opinion website to which I belong. How cool is that?

Thursday, March 30, 2006

Real friends

My best friend just had a baby this past Friday. She had a C-section, so even though she is now home, she is definitely not at 100%. Unfortunately, she has a had a run of bad luck since coming home. Her hubby took time off to help with the baby, but instead got a stomach virus and has puked for the last three days. (Sidebar: a woman would not allow herself to be sick in this situation - she would swallow some Tums and suck on some ginger candy but would not get sick. Mothers have this superhuman ability.) She can't drive herself anywhere, yet so I've done some shopping for comfort foods for her hubby while she cared for the baby. Another neighbor has been able to go over during the day to give her a hand as well.
Yesterday evening I got a call from her - she was having chest pains and needed to get to the hospital STAT! Hubby couldn't drive her - he barely could stand. She was able to get in touch with her mother, but she needed someone to care for the 5 day old baby while she was at the hospital. Luckily, I was available to help.
When I got there, she was crying. Not because of the pain in her chest but because she has to keep asking her friends and family for help. I had to laugh at her because what is the definition of a friend? I believe it is someone will stick by you in good times and in times. She can only look at things that are happening right now, that she thinks she is a burden on us. Where as I see it as payback for all the help she has given me over the years. It is her house we stayed at for over a month while we waited to close on our house (she was pregnant and due to have her baby at that time too). It is her house I'll be at for company while hubby goes away on business trips for the next month and a half. As I see it, I'm just continuing the circle.

Note: My friend came home from the hospital - she is OK.