Monday, December 28, 2009

How does he do that?!

I pull the car over to the curb so Dotter, Bean and I can view the beautiful Christmas decorations on this one particular house. It had strings of lights everywhere... and a sign posted that directed us to tune our radio to a particular station. Sure enough the lights dance and jump in time to the music. It's beyond beautiful. There wasn't a section of this home and yard that didn't have a light flashing, mesmorizing... after several quiet moments Bean perks up: "Hey! Listen! The lights match the music! That's cool!" I tell her they're supposed to. That's the point. They coordinate the lights to turn on and off in time with whatever song is on the radio. She was obviously impressed as she sat open-mouthed, watching. After a few minutes she asked, "Doesn't his arms get tired? All that plugging and unplugging? I'd get confused if it were me."

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

All in a Day's Work

8:37pm.
The night before the last day of school before Christmas Break.

Jelly Bean: "Um, Mom, you need to bring me to the store."

Me: [attempting to sit for the first time all day] "For...."

JB: "I have to get presents for my friends."

Me: "Silly child. You have no money and your mommy is smart enough to realize this."

JB: "But I have to get them something because they got me something."

Me: "It's almost nine o'clock at night, Bean."

JB: [full of emotional teen angst] "Why do you always treat me like this? You just don't want me to have any friends!"

Me: "How much are we talking here, Bean. How much money do you have budgeted for each gift and how many gifts do you need?"

JB: "Well...." [look of panic crosses face as she realizes she must employ math skills] "... um, maybe, like, ten dollars for each gift."

Me: "Ok. And how many gifts?"

JB: "Only like six."

Me: "That's sixty dollars - Are you planning on getting a job soon?"

JB: "No."

Me: [silent stare as I wait for her to realize this is a most rediculous request to ask me to pay $60 to buy gifts for her friends at 9:00 at night, especially since she has no plans of actually getting a job and working for her spending money]

JB: "It's just that most jobs you have to work on the weekends and that's the only time I get to see my friends."

****

6:48am the next morning.
Please note the bus arrives at 6:50am.

JB: [screaming into the bathroom where I'm busy showering] "Mom! You need to drive me to school."

Me: "Why?"

JB: "Because I have to turn in my cheerleading uniform."

Me: "... not following you here..."

JB: "Oh my god, Mom! I'm not going to ride the bus with my cheer uniform! That's so lame!"

Me: "What? Get on the bus!"

JB: "Oh my god! Why do you always embarrass me!"

Me: "Throw the uniform in your backpack, Bean. You've got enough room. It's not like there are any books in there."

JB: "You don't understand!" [noises that sound like she's throwing herself to the floor with her arm dramatically covering her face... much like a princess who has fainted after eating a poisoned apple]

Me: "Bean! You're going to miss the bus. I won't be done and dressed in the next three minutes to make sure you get to school on time and I don't think 'didn't feel like riding the bus' is a valid excuse for tardiness."

JB: "But I have my uniform!"

Me: [still yelling through running water] "It's the smallest uniform ever - next to the swim team's. Stuff it in your back pocket if you don't want it in your bag. Christ, stuff your bra with it, I don't care, just get on that bus so you're not late for school."

JB: "I hate you!"

Gleam*

I brush my teeth with hot water because I believe the more the toothpaste bubbles and foams the cleaner your teeth get.

Monday, December 21, 2009

The Naughty List

There is this wonderful website called Portable North Pole that helps Santa connect with children. Answer a few questions and a video link is sent to your email that you and your child can watch together.

Cutest thing ever! And, yes, Dotter got one this weekend! She's been questionsing a lot lately (thanks to those unbelievers at school), but there was no denying Santa's existance after this video. (Santa just knew too much.)

"Where's Jelly Bean's?"

What? Jelly Bean needed a video, too? Crap.

So I snuck back to the computer to answer a few questions.... to add to the fun I put her on the naughty list. Laughing my way back to the living room I waited for the Bean to notice her new mail notification inbetween her constant instant messaging. Finally she cooperated and, for the sake of Dotter, exclaimed with great excitement: "Mom! I got a video from Santa, too! Come watch! Come watch!" (A bit forced, I'll admit, but it drew Dotter to her side in half a second.)

I couldn't stop giggling as Santa pointed out that the Bean's constant cell phone usage and lack of helping around the house was earning her a spot on his undesired Naughty List. The Bean gave me a look of, "Thanks, Mom. Only you would do something this dorky." Dotter was, well, quiet.

Hours later, when I returned home from my show, I tiptoed past Dotter's room only to hear her ask, "Mom? Is that you? I really need to talk to you."

"Honey, it's almost eleven o'clock. You should be sleeping."

"I know, but this is important."

"Okay. What do you need?"

That's when I noticed the tears welling up in her eyes. "Mom, what if Jelly Bean doesn't get a present from Santa?"

"What?"

"You have to write Santa and tell him Jelly Bean isn't that bad all the time. What if she doesn't get a present from him? You have to write him, Mom!"

And so it is that I will be composing a letter to Santa Claus this very day to explain to him that the Bean deserves a gift as well. I figure the stamp is cheaper than the therapy Dotter's going to need if her sister doesn't get a gift from Santa on Christmas morning.

Injured Goose

"The PD is aware of a goose with its flipper caught in a trap. We tried unsuccessful to catch it today. It can fly at least far enough to get away. It is hanging around the beach and park area for now. Fellow Mortals will take it in if we can catch it. So until it gets tired there is nothing we can do."

Yes, InterPeople, this is an actual email I just received (as-is). I am currently attempting to resist the urge to run down to the beach and take a photograph of the injured goose.

Friday, December 18, 2009

All because...

Remember, kids, that your choices today may still serve up consequences in the future.

Take me, for instance. One minute I'm envisioning a quaint painted wall in my living room with three framed photos of my beautiful children under one of those cute little painted plaques that say "...all because two people fell in love..." -- the next minute I'm doing an internet search for "all because two people had unprotected sex wall signs."

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

School Suggestion

I think schools should serve alcoholic drinks at their Christmas Programs. That way you'll be concentrating more on what you're going to order next than the fact that for the past twelve minutes you haven't understood a darn word of what those kids are mumbling into the microphone.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

All I Want For Christmas...

The actual Christmas Lists from the girls:

Good Christmas Gift Ideas for Dotter

1. Bob It [Bop It]
2. Alarm Clock (pink one)
3. Are family to have a good Christmas
4. Workout Station
5. Baby hamstir (rill one) [real one]
6. Bunk bed (blue one on budum [bottom] and pink on top)
7. Easy back oven [Easy Bake Oven]
8. mini fridge
9. mini frezzer [freezer]
10. Bathroom in my room.
11. Squeashy brushes [squishy hair brushes]
12. The new barbie house!!!!!
13. American Girl Doll Book: Smart Girls Guide to Saving Money
14. Movie Board that has "ACTION" on it.
15. Zue Zue Pets (any kind) [Zhu Zhu Pets]
16. Barbarque chips
17. Mor mermades (the new ones) [More Mermaids]
18. Mind Flexs!!!
19. CD Player for Dotter. Only Dotter.
20. Karoake CDs
21. A new DS
22. New games for my DS.



Jelly Bean's xmas list:

*Illumina 2 sided lighted make-up mirror (Conair)
* Gift card to Sally Hansen (Sally Beauty Supply)
*Fantasy by Brittney Spears
*Money (to spend on a hair appt.)

Please Leave. Now.

Ok, Cream Colored Shawl Girl, it is time that you leave our office. I just can't handle it anymore. Stop saying "like" between every fourth word. That went out in the eighties. I've counted 78 times that you've slapped your thighs. That's annoying, too. You should probably breathe more, you know, between your incessant rambling. Although, I'm assuming your loud sighs at the end of your tragic monologues is what provides you adequate oxygen to continue. (Lucky us.) And I'm glad you finally noticed that huge green smudge over your right breast but you did not have to stand in front of my male co-worker attempting to rub it off for the last three minutes.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Just a little fun.

Tonight's performance signals the halfway mark of this season's production of Home for the Holidays: A Christmas Musical. Oh yes, InterPeople, I am in a show less than three months after giving birth. (I wasn't planning on it; the original actress bailed last minute. I rehearsed three times before we opened. Two of those rehearsals didn't count because half the people couldn't make it.) Only six more shows to go!

It's sort of like Groundhog Day except only for a couple hours. We joke that we like to keep things "fresh" -- this simply means we like to "do things on stage that will hopefully cause the other actors to break character."

I'm winning.

I just knew my sarcastic wit and humor would come in handy! I throw things in all over the place but I am nice about it. I usually throw something at someone who isn't really part of the scene. That way they don't have to really respond... they just can't laugh. (Random things I've said: "My father was a boyscout." And "I find instructional videos quite effective. That's how I learned to polka." Doesn't mean much here, but trust me, it was FUNNY!) I almost broke a girl last weekend. We'll see what I can pull of this weekend! Although, the guy playing the gayest gay Christmas caroler EVER had me just about busting a gut last show.

We might look like innocent professional actors, but you never know what's going on up on that stage.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Show Off

I love Christmas at the office. Each holiday season we receive boxes of unhealthiness in mass quantities from the various firms we work with (along with this one lone fruit basket from a company that hates us, but that's a story for another day). The expensive, name brand, top-of-the-line chocolate goes home with our boss. The generic boxes get set out on the counter in the spirit of goodwill. Today is a cheap chocolate day and we gladly welcomed a box of off-brand bite sized mint chocolate truffles.

Bite sized to me means "shove the whole thing in your mouth because, hey - they're small enough to make that behavior socially acceptable." My co-worker however, defines its size more as "must take teeny tiny bites ever so slowly and methodically in an effort to make this singular piece of chocolate last as long as humanly possible."

To each his own. Let's just say he's had two pieces to my seventeen. Who's the loser now, fancy eater?

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Almond Shortbread

Well, since no one was hospitalized after eating my cookie exchange shortbread, I figured I'd share my secret recipe:

ALMOND SHORTBREAD
1 7-ounce can or roll almond paste, chilled and grated (do not use almond pie filling)
1 cup sugar
2 egg yolks
1 cup butter, at room temperature
2 1/2 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking powder

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Butter a 9x13-inch pan; set aside.
Using electric mixer, combine almond paste, sugar and butter.
Beat on low until combined, then beat on high until light and fluffy.
Add egg yolks, one at a time, beating until mixture is light and sugar is dissolved.
Using a wooden spoon, add flour and baking powder, mix just until all ingredients are incorporated.
Spoon batter into prepared pan; even out and score very shallow lones, using the back of a knife, into batter to mark size and shape desired.
Back 22 to 26 minutes at 350 degrees, until shortbread is a very light golden color.
Cool in pan on wire rack.
If adding decoration, do it before cutting on scored lines.
Pack into airtight container and freeze for up to a month. (Or leave them out and eat the entire pan in one evening like I did.)
Thaw, wrap and present as gifts.
Because they are very rich, pieces should be cut quite small, in squares or triangles.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

What's so hard about a roast?

I found a delicious recipe for a no-fail pork roast. NO FAIL, people. That's a recipe right up my alley! I must admit I was pretty darn successful with the cookies the other night so this would surely be a walk in the culinary park!

The recipe seemed simple enough. A few spices mixed together and rubbed all over the meat. Sear the meat. (Ok, that one had me wondering but it just means to put it in a frying pan and kind of cook the outside real quick. Something I could surely handle.) Toss the wad of pork into a slow cooker, add a bit of water and, according to the words printed on the recipe, "cook on high 2 hours; reduce to low heat and cook 4 to 6 hours more."

On an on this recipe blabbered about how soft and tender and juicy this thing was guaranteed to be. At 11:30pm I closed the lid on the meat and sat down with Cletus to begin his nightly "let's see how many hours I can cry, fuss and fidget" routine. I set my mental alarm for two hours later when I pictured myself walking into the kitchen, bouncing Cletus along the way, and switching the knob from high to low....

The good news is Cletus slept for an unprecedented seven hours straight!

The bad news is the roast was the size of a hamburger patty and I can't get the scorched stench out of the house.

Can't Make Me

Fine. I'll admit it. I've never seen A Charlie Brown Christmas. I won't do it. I don't want to. The song annoys me and the beginning is so darn depressing it leaves me with no choice but to change the channel. I don't want to watch the gang booing Charlie Brown when they learn he's their new director. I don't want to sit through a half hour of Chuck looking sad and depressed and feeling like a complete social outcast. That doesn't exactly scream "Have a Holly Jolly Christmas!" to me It's more like "help yourself to whatever is under the sink; I'll heat up the oven."

Monday, December 7, 2009

Car-ma

My car died Saturday. Well, not really. It didn't die all the way, but it will soon. Kind of like that scene in Monty Python and the Holy Grail:
"I'm not dead..."
"What? He says he's not dead."
"Well, he will be soon."

Like I told the guy at the garage, "The headlight is out, and it spastically jerks about if the needle gets near the number two in that little RPM dial thingy."

As if that's not enough, the steering went out in Big V's new-to-him truck. We were in the driveway getting ready to return a video.
"Wow, that squeak is really loud. What is that? Is that a belt?"
"I think it's the rotars."
"The brake rotars? But we're not moving. Do they make noise if we're not moving? Are you sure that it's not a belt?"
"No, I'm pretty sure it's the brakes."

So, V, who knows absolutely nothing about mechanical things, hops back out of the truck, lifts the hood, and stares at the inside because, really, what else are you going to do when you open the hood of a vehicle and know nothing about what is going on inside there? So he stares. And stares some more. And then the truck stopped. As in, the motor just shut off.

Well, ain't that somethin'?

V hops back in the truck, closes the door and sits.

"Maybe it's a safety thing - like if the brakes don't work right then the engine won't let you drive the truck." He gave me this look as if to say, 'you are not helping.'


So here sits a couple with three children between them and no working vehicles. Not good. V, being a man who takes care of things, gets a ride to the shop and brings home a work truck to use, and promptly backs it into the driveway and into my car.

Take your time. You can re-read that sentence again.

Wrong, Wrong, Wrong.

When I am already at the office and you hear me comment that my pants seem just a tad too short the correct response is, "Not at all - they look great; all the sheek New York moms wear their pants that length." It is most definately not, "Well, once you lose weight they'll fit nicer. The fabric won't have to stretch around your butt as far."

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Cookie Exchange Update

I forgot my cookies. You know, the ones I exchanged for. The ones I was supposed to take home to my family and enjoy. Yeah, those ones.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

What's the exchange rate?

I was invited to a cookie exchange tonight. Since I don’t bake, I’m sure you understand the heart palpitations caused by the mere mention of something as scary as this. I am being asked not only to bake a holiday treat that can be packaged in quantities of twelve, but I must do this with the understanding that several people will bring my packages of baked goodness home, where their loved ones will actually attempt to eat them. This can not end good, people.

I found a recipe that looked easy enough called Almond Shortbread. I’m a big fan of Walker’s Shortbread and an even bigger fan of almond paste. Call me crazy, but I think this is a winning combination. Although I was tempted to simply spread the paste straight on to an existing Walker, in the spirit of Christmas I figured I’d at least try the recipe. It seemed easy enough: throw a bunch of ingredients together, mix it up and toss it in the oven. After the “light golden brown” was adequately acquired I removed the pan from the oven to let cool on little wire racks. (Are you impressed I actually own little wire racks? I know I was.)

But before I get too comfortable in my accomplishments I realize there is a lot more to do… and many more options in the “what could go horribly wrong” category. I need to cut up these little guys, package them, deliver them, and wait to see if I get charged with attempted murder.

I’m sure the experienced exchangers will have cutesy little packages filled with gourmet flavored seasonal goodness and tied with a festive bow a la Martha Stewart; I’m just tossing mine in Ziploc baggies with my attorney’s business card tucked in.

Monday, November 30, 2009

Oi Vay!

Oy Vay! (Oy Vey!)

1: Used when frustrated.
2: Used when anoyed by other people fighting or arguing and it becomes a big mess.

I organized a surprise 30th birthday party for Big V this past Wednesday. Like an uber-insecure psycho girlfriend I ganked his phone while he was in the shower and wrote down as many names and numbers as I could. (This took several times, since he has 300 contacts but only takes five minute showers.) Awkwardly, I called each one of his friends and invited them to the big shindig. I thought maybe, just maybe, if we were lucky, we'd have close to twenty people in attendance. We had over forty! Trust me when I say it was AWESOME to see V's expression when he saw so many of his friends there to help him celebrate. He's one of those guys who has friends of all types and in all different circles, so it was an excellent, if not eclectic, mix of personalities.

Later, V's mom would find out he had a wonderful surprise party with his friends. To this she would say, and, yes, I am quoting: "Why didn't you invite me?" To which he replied, "How could I invite you to something I didn't know was happening? It was a surprise party. I wasn't in charge of the guest list." You might think that this is true... but, alas, as she explained, he really was in charge of the guest list: "Well, when you saw I wasn't there you should've called me."

[Note to Self: If my son finds himself thirty years old, surrounded by his friends at a bar on his birthday and he immediately thinks, "My mom isn't here! I need to call her right now!" then I have failed as a mother.]

Thanksgiving was a busy day, as it usually is with most families. Luckily, V's family celebrates the holiday months in advance... ok, weeks... my point is it's done and over with by the time the real holiday arrives. We managed to eat our way through the day and rest accordingly. V's mom would see him the next day and describe how upset she was that he didn't text message her Happy Thanksgiving. (There would be tears involved.)

So, this holiday season I am thankful for a mother who lets me be an adult. For a mother who enjoys my company - but never demands it. For a mother who isn't steps away from being instituionalized.

(If it wasn't so gosh darn irritating I'd tell you about how V's mom is attempting to impose a "minimum every two week visit." Like that one is going over well with V.... he hasn't, uh, stopped talking about it...)

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

A little worried...

Oh, boy, oh, boy, oh, boy, oh, boy. What have I done?

Tonight I have planned a surprise birthday gathering for Big V. Let the anxieties begin:

Will there be enough people?
Will there not be enough people?
Will the food be okay?
Will there be enough food?
What if there's not enough food?
Will people drink too much? I don't need a bar fight...
Will they think the location is lame?
Should I explain this is the bar that sponsers his plethora of sports leagues throughout the year?
Will the cake be there?
Why did I even let that lady talk me into getting a cake? We don't eat cake. V rarely eats cake. He won't care if there's a cake.
What if no one eats the cake and we're forced to take the darn thing home?
What if I can't get my hair done?
What if I look frumpy? I feel incredibly frumpy lately.
What if I get really tired? I'm sleep deprived, you know. It's not going to look cool if I'm yawning in the corner.
Why am I spending money on this?
Shouldn't I save my money for Christmas?
Why was he born at this time of the year?
What if I have no money for Christmas?
What if something happens and Grandma can't watch the kids?
Why am I so worried about this?

Friday, November 20, 2009

Put it on the List.

Voicemail message to me from the Bean:

"Hi, this is your daughter. Uh, I just wanted to call you and remind you to get toilet paper because, uh, I just urinated and there is no toilet paper so I had to wipe my butt with cotton balls. Yeah. So, uh, please pick up some toilet paper. Thank you."

Monday, November 16, 2009

Regular Recognition

This morning, the lady at Starbucks kindof, sortof recognized me! I can feel it... in no time at all I will officially become a "Regular." Being kindof, sortof recognized made my morning trip to the office just THAT much better!

I've always wanted to be a Regular. To be known as "you know... the lady that comes in and..." ever since I worked at the bank right out of highschool. Of course, it was easy to figure out the names, but we still referred to our fondest customers in terms like "the lady with the smelly money" and "the guy who insists on signing in red" and "the idiot who is always waiting in the parking lot on Saturday morning before we open."

Then I got a job at Subway. There was "double meat cold cut combo" guy and "the chick who has to have her sub cut in thirds," not to mention "the Tuesday lady that pays in silver dollars."

The problem has always been that although I am a creature of habit, I don't do enough of one particular thing long enough to become a Regular. I tried once, a few years back. I was bound and determined to become a Local Regular. I ate corned beef hash, two eggs - sunny side up and a piece of whole wheat toast for lunch at this dive diner every day for three weeks before I gave up. I should've known it would be virtually impossible to achieve since you have to do the same thing in the same town for at least twenty years before you become a Local. And I didn't care for corned beef hash enough to commit to it for twenty years. But I digress. We're off the hash on on to coffee. Which is ironic in itself, because I don't even like coffee. Don't worry though, this still works because Starbucks has tea. Plus, I lowered the bar; Starbucks has a drive through and is located off the highway exit so there's no pressure to be a local. I can just be a regular.

And so it came to pass that I decided I would order the same thing every day, at the same time every day, in my efforts to become a Starbucks regular. I began my quest the day I returned to work from maternity leave. I figure this was my subconscious telling me that leaving my precious baby boy would be too hard so I should soften the blow by driving to a little window in the hopes of being recognized -- much like my precious baby boy now recognizes me by smiling when I talk to him. Sure, the barista wouldn't coo and flail her arms about, but she would hand me a warm cup of chai tea latte. It kind of balances out.

After two weeks of committment (and a cost of $4.17 daily) I drove up to the window and handed over my plastic. The girl took my card, paused and asked, "Didn't you come through already?" I assured her I did not, to which she replied, "Well, some lady who looks just like you came through earlier and ordered the same thing. I was surprised to see you because I thought you had already been through once!" She knew me! Well, kindof, sortof. I'm almost there...

Friday, November 6, 2009

I got dressed in the dark today. Not really. The light was on. In fact, it was an annoyingly bright light. But it was 5:30 in the morning. And it makes me feel better if I say it was dark. Honestly, I thought I looked good at the time. But now, my black pants with brown shoes just really ain't cutting it. What the hell was I thinking? And now, I'm leaving work to go to not one, but TWO doctor's appointments. There is no time to stop at home and switch shoes. Oh, no. I am about to feel the natural consequences of my decision. I shall be forced to get out of my car, walk across the parking lot, into the clinic, ride the elevator and wait in the waiting room for everyone to see... not once, but twice. At two different clinics.

Am I worried about infectious diseases? Am I scared I'll succumb to the horrors of the dreaded swine flu? Heck no! I'm terrified of "the look." You know, that one the pretty, put together mom gives that says, "Oh, that's too bad... you tried really hard to look all classy and put together; to give the appearance that you have it all together as a mom, but alas, you have failed. Better luck next time."

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Spending Freeze, What?!

It's official. I have re-entered the workforce after my lovely (if not extremely painful) Maternity Leave. Let me tell you, c-sections are NOT for the faint of heart. It wouldn't have been too bad if I could have gone without the raging infection and incredible acid-like rash covering the majority of my body. Weeks of intense antibiotics later I'm work ready.

I came back to the office expecting complete mass chaos. Nothing of the sort. It's relatively painless. (Although I am comparing to the weeks of hell I endured recently... anything was better than that.) I did, however, walk into what has been defined as a "Spending Freeze."

Budgets are a funny thing: they only work on paper... unless the people in charge are determined to actually follow it. Trust me, I know this because I use budgets in my personal life. If I budget $172 for groceries I must remain disciplined to not exceed $172 in order for the budget to work. If I spend, oh, let's say $514 I may find a deficit. Funny how that happens.

Happens in personal life as well as at work. So, spending freeze it is.

I learned this when I walked to the supply closet to get an envelope to mail out correspondence. Except there were no envelopes. Perhaps they were relocated, I thought. Upon attempting to seek them out I learned that we had no money to order supplies. We were in a "spending freeze."

"But we have no envelopes."

"I know."

"But it's early November... we have two full months until the new year."

"I know."

"But how are we expected to mail correspondence."

"We all have to make sacrifices."

"I get that.... but mailing envelopes?! We do a lot of mailing around here."

"The economy is bad. Like I said, we all have to make sacrifices. Oh, by the way, we're expecting quotes to come in for new flooring for the office. The carpet is looking kind of worn and I was thinking that laminate flooring would look sharp...."

Friday, October 23, 2009

It's been a while, I know. I haven't been feeling well. In fact, I've been feeling pretty much like I was beaten down with a dozen baseball bats. Surgery will do that to you, or so I've been told. As if being sawed in half wasn't enough my body has decided to welcome infection, to which my immune system bravely announced, "I SHALL FIGHT IT!" except it isn't doing a very good job at it, which is why, five weeks post surgery, I'm popping prescription pills like they're Skittles.

I'm not exactly warm & fuzzy when I feel like crap, so imagine how unbelievably thrilled I was when V told me just moments ago that he "has kind of a problem." Ok... "and I don't want to fight about it." Oh boy. This means only one thing:

His mother is unleashed.

Sure enough, tomorrow at 4pm she has an appointment at Sears to get family pictures taken. Now, you might be thinking that if you were wanting a picture of your entire fanmily you might ASK said members of the family IF and WHEN they are available. But not this Queen Bee. Oh no. That would never enter her mind.

It just gets under my skin so bad. First the callous approach to other human beings that she shares this planet with. She never stops to think people might have something to do other than wait to be beckoned by her. But what is even more upsetting to me is the way Big V melts into this spineless little boy who can't stand up to his mother. Needless to say we aren't going to be doing what we planned to be doing. Our plans have been bumped by the Queen Mother.

I used to hate my mother. HATE HER. I was a teenager overflowing with angst. My life sucked. Nothing was fair. My family lame. Nobody loved me. I had a big nose and wore dorky glasses - and it was all my mother's fault.

What a waste of time that was, blaming her. It was my own insecurities that I listened to. My mother was (and is) none of that. My mother taught me that the way you treat others is how they're going to treat you. That good manners is the best feature a person can have. She taught me that the only person accountable for the way my life is going is me. She taught me that I am not entitled to a thing, but rather if I wanted something I had to work at it. And that it might take awhile, so keep at it and don't give up.

She never coddled me. She never ridiculed me. She never spent time telling me I could've been this or that. Instead she took every mistake I made and every goal I reached as a reminder that I'm the only person responsible for my life.

Sometimes I think how unfair it is that I found this wonderful, amazing guy to share my life with that has the craziest mother on the planet. She's a drama queen, always a victim, and loves to pass judgment on everyone she comes across. I don't want any part of that nonsense. But maybe God put her in my life to remind me how wonderful my own family is.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Ok, so I've got issues with kids not giving me my much needed (and much deserved, I might add) Daily Quiet Time. The Bean has attitude that you wouldn't believe... she makes sure to tell me on a daily basis how rediculous I am, how unappreciated I am, and how the world, well, her world, would be much better off without me... and yet night after night I find myself held hostage by her noise and clatter. In and out of the kitchen, stomping down the hall, slamming doors, random talking to whoever or whatever she sees/hears as she wanders aimlessly (yet etirely pissed off) around the house.

Whatever happened to the moody teenager keeping themselves holed up in the privacy of their own room? Is it too much to ask that by 9:30pm the Bean creep into her room, close the door, and not open it until morning? I don't care what she does in her room.... do her nails, pick out her clothes for the next day, write journal entries how she wishes I was dead. Doesn't matter... as long as I get some peace and quiet. Some much needed down time from her attitude.

For the past two years I've tried to explain this to her. Her aunt has tried to explain this to her. The Big V has tried to explain this to her. Hell, I've asked random strangers on the street to try to explain this to her.

All I ask is for a quitting time. A time when I can look forward to not hearing whatever complaint is coming out of her mouth. Just a little reprieve....

Man, I hope she does to college out of state....

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Woe is You? Whatever.

Welcome to Vent Time, Ladies and Gentlemen. It is time for me to blow off steam. Using my current hormonal imbalance due to recent pregnancy/delivery, I'm going to be quite blunt. Therefore, it is with very little reservation that I say this:

IF YOU DO NOT HAVE THE MONEY, DO NOT SPEND IT.

Don't come to me complaining about how little money you have if every day you are going out to eat not once, but twice. I've been there... I ate noodles. Generic egg noodles. Mixed with generic cream of chicken soup for added flavor. I splurged on a bottle of seasoning salt that had hot sauce mixed in to kick things up a notch. I ate that every single day. We also had no television. None. I was a single mom who was poor, and I had no tv and I ate noodles. I am unable to sympathize for how financially strapped you are when you eat better than I do.

Don't come to me complaining about how little money you have, how you have to get your food from the local food pantry, when this next weekend you're packing up your husband and three kids to a weekend getaway at a waterpark resort. See, I, too, was there, where I had difficulty buying groceries to feed my kids. I didn't go on vacations. I am unable to sympathize for how financially strapped you are when you travel more often than I do.

And please, PLEASE, don't come to me complaining about how little money you have when you don't work more than twelve hours in a week. Especially if I know family members have offered to watch your children for free so you can work more hours. See, I was there once. My mom and my aunt helped me out by watching my daughter for free so that I could work a full time job AND a part time job. It sucked. Really, it did. I had no social life. I barely saw my daughter. But then I realized that it was MY responsibility to care for her, and that meant working my butt off to pay for her expenses. Yes, I worked. I still do. I am unable to sympathize for how financially strapped you are when you have more time off to enjoy yourself than I do.

There. I feel better now.

Friday, October 2, 2009

What to do?

It's about time to do something (read: anything) with my hair. My paranoid self refused to color my hair the entire time I was pregnant, so I've got this lovely grey spattering going on. I also was worried a pedicure would bring on early labor, so I went the entire summer without. The bottoms of my feet are so rough I could probably pimp myself out to sand some wood floors just by walking around on them. I didn't tan all summer either. (I know, I know: bad for you. But it's just so relaxing...) And, since the major items were being ignored, I allowed the minor items to be ignored as well.

A manicure would be nice. A massage. A facial. Eyebrow wax. Maybe some teeth whitening while we're at it. Geesh, if I actually had the money I could leave for the day, come back, and V would have no idea who I was. Not a bad plan, now that I think of it. Perhaps an appointment shall be made.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Lesser of Evils

It's no secret that V's P's don't think highly of me. Actually, it's his mom and sister (his dad is pretty silent when it comes to voicing an opinion of me). The good news is that his mother treats most everyone she meets the way she treats me: highly judgmental, and not afraid to criticize pretty much anything she sees. I've never heard a true compliment coming out of her mouth for as long as I've known her. She treats V worse than she treats me, but he's used to it, I guess. I, however, am not.

And so it is with great reservation that I must let go of my newborn son and somehow be okay with him visiting Grandma Nothing's Ever Good Enough. I figure the best way to do this is have V take the baby while I spend some quality me time at a really great day spa. One that provides unlimited glasses of a chilled German Riesling along with my pedicure and massage. Now, if I require V to foot the bill perhaps the visits will be limited due to financial constraints.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Baby Bubble

Is it selfish of me to wish to stay in this protective baby bubble of mine? I want to quit everything and just breathe in the smell of his skin. I don't need food, or adult conversation, or trips out of doors. I just want to stay in this peaceful place forever!

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

It's been 2 weeks...

Who knew I would be so in love with this baby boy of mine! Yes, I knew I would love him... what I wasn't prepared for is that I LOVE him. I am head over heals in love with this little guy. Maybe it's because I'm older. Maybe because I have Big V to share him with. Maybe because I got a taste of what it might be like if things didn't work out ok.

One minute V and I are chilling out, debating how long the delivery would be, the next minute the door to our room swings open and five people we've never seen before are very purposefully moving about, taking supplies out of cabinets and drawers, injecting something in my IV, mumbling to each other while pointing at the monitor... and my doctor walks in and announces, "Ok, well, I guess baby doesn't like what we're doing here so we're going to have to go the C-Section route..." In less than five minutes I was being wheeled away from Big V and towards a sterile operating room, trying to make sense of the words "dangerously low heart rate."

God was gracious to us and gave us the most healthy and beautiful baby boy I've ever seen! Right now he's laying on V's chest, mewing like a kitten. Life is so good!

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Another Reason not to C-Section

A c-section can be painful. The doctors will prescribe wonderful pain medication too fake yourself into feeling half-way alive. These drugs will make you constipated. If you've never really experienced true constipation you will think, "this doesn't sound bad at all" and you will happily take your drugs which lull you to sleep. You will convince yourself "this isn't bad at all...." and then you will essentially pass out while your significant other tends to the baby.

Eventually, however, your body will expel all things held in the depths of your bowels for the past seven days. This will not be pretty. You will curse life as you know it while trying to figure out what to grab on to while you sit on the toilet sweating profusely. You will think "just breathe through this and everything will be okay..."

Twenty minutes later, while rocking back and forth, you will be pleading with God, "please just let me live through this..." Sweat will be dripping so bad it will sting your eyes. You will make deals with God like, "I promise to go to both the morning and the evening church services if I just don't get a hemmeroid!"

Just like labor, when you think you can't possibly take any more of the pain, something will pass out of your body that you swear was WAY too large to exit the path it just did. You will feel yourself tear in two and ready yourself for the gallon of blood you are convinced is currently oozing from your body.

A wild explosion of waste will ensue. You will not care that the toilet will be clogged, or that the walls are thin and everyone in the surrounding area can hear absolutely everything. You will not even care that smell has created a smog-like effect, one in which you could actually reach out and touch the stench.

Your body will convulse, arms and legs flinging themselves in front of you like one of those rediculous wooden Santa's that has the string coming out of its crotch, you know, you pull the string and the arms and legs shoot out like it was just electrocuted.

After you unclog the toilet, you will think, "at least now I can relax" and you will try to carefully pad your way back to the living room, only to get halfway there and be forced to race back to the porcelain stool which you will soon learn will be your best friend for the next hour and a half.

You will go through a roll of toilet paper and flush the toilet more than a dozen times.

Eventually you will feel empty enough to complain about it and you will swear that you will never take another stupid pain pill again, because nothing - not even the effects of being cut in half - could be worse than what you just went through.

Monday, September 14, 2009

7 Days Left...

My Official Hatch Date is in 7 days. And yet, here I am. Womb bulging. I shouldn't really complain. It's not like we're "ready" in the sense of all those normal couples out there awaiting the birth of their child. Except for the crib one wouldn't even realize we were expecting a baby to enter the home any time soon. Part of it is because it's a lot to get ready and part of it is my expectation that the dog will eat everything anyway.

Seriously, the dog is out of control. In the last couple weeks it has destroyed two pairs of flip-flops (that were on a shelf), tore a sweatshirt to shreds (that was hanging up in a closet), ate a piece of trim and effectively removed a wooden extension gate that was blocking its access of a pass-thru window (from sun room to kitchen via the counter top). It's also picked up a nasty habit of barking and whining throughout the night and vomitting throughout the day...regardless of floor covering.

I'll be lucky if the child itself remains unaffected. Perhaps I should toss around the baby items just to distract the dog from the baby.

I really do want to give birth, but the Big V is working a lot and keeps reminding me that there really isn't a "good time" right now, what with all these deadlines... plus, I've had trouble with, uh, being 'regular' and I'm afraid that if I don't empty my system completely before going into labor there is no way I would be able to let V in the room to watch. I know, I know.... most women have a bowel movement at some point when pushing out baby... Can't I just be left alone in my denial? I can't think of this right now... ew.

I have an appointment this afternoon. Nothing like driving 45 minutes, waiting an hour, and then being told nothing is happening and that we're in a "holding pattern."

Friday, September 11, 2009

I've been struggling trying to come up with an idea of what to write about. I don't want to write another blog about being pregnant, or waiting to have the baby, or all the current physical discomforts I'm experiencing. It gets old and that's boring. Who wants to hear about squished bladders and acid reflux?

I could write about work, but that would just be yet another example of how the micromanager control freak is bottlenecking 80% of our projects because they're all sitting on her desk waiting for her approval. Then I'd have to launch into yet another rant about "why retain employees that you obviously don't trust can do the work you hired them for."

The Big V is working hard in a wild attempt to have every scheduled job finished by the time I go into labor... except he keeps scheduling more and more jobs, and I don't think I can hold off pushing until November. (I'm due in ten days. I'll do what I can, but there are no promises.)

Satan the dog is still eating its way through our house. On seperate recent occasions we've come home to: a shredded sweatshirt, miniblinds removed from a window and torn to bits, the trim and gate used to contain the dog in the sunroom destroyed, and an eaten wall. Yes, eaten. As in the dog ate through the wall. She got through the wood paneling (I never liked it, but I'm really not liking this new alternative), the insulation and started gnawing her way through the drywall on the opposite side of the wall (which would be the garage). Six more minutes and I'm convinced we would've had a new doggie door, whether we wanted one or not. Oh, yeah, and she scratched/tried to eat through a metal fireproof door. It's now dented and, well, scratched throughout a 2'x3' area around the bottom. It's absolutely lovely.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Emergency Notification

I was going to sit and reminisce about the self-induced food coma I managed to achieve in two days at the local county fair - brought on by such healthy things like elephant ears, deep fried cheddar nuggets, and this glorious bbq pork sandwich on garlic bread of all things! - but, technically, the holiday weekend is over and I should now snap back to reality.

Reality actually hit me in the form of an automated Emergency Notification Call from the local highschool. I thought the concept was brilliant. You give the school your phone number and in the event of an emergency an automated message is recorded at the school, then sent to everyone's phone so they all have the same information at the same time. I provided my cell number so I would be immediately notified if there was a bomb threat, or school fire, or a water main break forced the closing of the school. You know, in case of an emergency.

Riding home from the fair last night I checked my phone... and there's a number I didn't recognize... but they did leave a message... MY FIRST EMERGENCY NOTIFICATION CALL!

An emergency already? It's like the fourth day of the school year... but for the safety of my child I had to listen. "Quiet, girls - there's been an emergency!"

And so it happened that I listened with keen interest as the emergency was described to me via automated message... the President of the United States.... there was going to be a speech... to the students... the students of America... telling them to stay in school... encouraging them to do a good job... AND be respectful.... and this speech... it would be TELEVISED!!... and -- oh, gasp and horror -- the school was going to ALLOW THIS SPEECH TO BE AIRED IN THE SCHOOL COMMONS DURING LUNCH TIME! (How could they do this to our children?) But don't worry... because if you chose to have your child opt out of this activity, you could send a note along to school with them and they'd be pulled from the activity.

Ok, call me old fashioned, but is this really an emergency? I mean, it's the President of the United States. Whether you like him or not, or agree with him or not, he's sorta, kinda like the man in charge. Kind of like the boss your kid is going to get when he graduates college. (Probably before of you're one of those parents who makes their kids actually experience responsibility in the form of workforce development.) What lesson are we teaching our kids when we say, "This guy is the one in charge, but if you don't like him, that's ok, you just don't have to listen to him."

Respect, man. Respect. You listen to him because he's the man in charge. You listen to him so that you can make an educated argument if you don't agree with what he says. You don't just cover your ears and then hide out in the library complaining about what you think he may or may not have said. You listen to him because if you honestly come to your own opinion that you could do a better job, then you also know how you can do a better job. And you choose to educate yourself and make a difference.

Honestly, what harm is going to come from a bunch of self-entitled spoiled kids (oh, yes, I can say that because I have them) hearing someone encouraging them to stay in school. Take education seriously. Try hard. And then try harder. Make a difference - to yourself and to your community.

THIS was the emergency? Oh boy, my haven't times changed....

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

The First Day of School

Today Facebook is inundated with cute little status updates describing the First Day of School... complete with pictures of toothless children, kids whose backpacks are bigger than they are, school busses pulling out their flashing red stop signs. Comments about mothers tearing up as they watched their little one climbing those big bus steps. Updates about how lonely and sad and bored mommy is now that junior is off at school for the entire day! Yeah, not so much mine. Getting both girls to school was a treat for me. It wasn't always. I mean, there was a time when I got choked up thinking how fast they were growing, how I wish I could just hold them in my lap forever. But then they learned how to do this thing called Sibling Rivalry, and now I just want them seperated as far as possible in the hopes for some well-deserved peace and quiet.

Jelly Bean regularly works herself up in a tither (mostly because she doesn't want to listen) and then completely freaks out. Like, completely. From a mature adult point of view I can easily see that if she just paused for two minutes... 120 lousy seconds.... she would have the information she needed and we could all move gracefully throughout our day. But her immature teen reaction tends to release my immature I'm In Charge Here attitude and we're ultimately left with me fuming while forced to listen to her slamming bedroom door as she spouts out some ingenious insult like, "Oh, yeah - well - you have CHEST HAIR!"

Needless to say, this morning could not come soon enough.

The Bean's bus was scheduled to arrive at 6:50am. Big V took on the task of actually waking her up once her alarm clock and the alarm on her cell phone failed to do so. He showered while she dressed. Then fifteen minutes later I hopped in the shower while Dotter woke and dressed, and Bean monopolized the bathroom mirror. (Yes, four people getting ready at the same time with only one bathroom. It is possible. It's not fun... but it is possible.)

As I'm trying to enjoy my shower, Dotter is attempting to wiggle through to the sink to brush her teeth, the Bean is insisting her hair has to be completely redone because V mentioned the back looked totally cool (which in Teen Speak means "Your hair looks different. This is bad. Very, very bad! And everyone, yes, everyone you see will be laughing at you. Yes, you.") and V is singing out random song lyrics, because, honestly, God would put the three grumpiest non-morning people in a home with the most cheeriest morning person on the planet. Silly, God. He's funny like that.

So it gets to that point where everyone is clearing out of the bathroom as I'm rinsing the conditioner out of my hair and I know it's time for the Bean to go.

"Let me know when you're leaving!" I yell out. (I have this fear about kids being kidnapped. It stems from my brother vanishing when he was four.) "OK!" she yells back, more out of complacency then actual concern.

By this time the bathroom is still and I'm allowed those moments where I can just stand and let the water wash over me. I didn't even mind that the water had lost that scalding-the-top-layer-of-my-skin warmth. I was actually alone in a quiet bathroom.

"MOM! WHERE IS MY BUS STOP?!" an extremely panicked voice cried out.

I'm tempted to respond with, "Well, I was going to tell you that last night, but you insisted on stomping about while accusing me of growing massive amounts of chest hair. Betcha wish you woulda listened then, eh?" but I knew that was an immature answer that would bring no real sense of peace, so instead I took a deep breath and yelled back over the shower curtain, out the bathroom and down the hall to where ever it was she was standing, "IT'S ON THE CORNER OF 6th AND LOCUST!."

"WAIT. WHERE IS IT?! HOW DO I GET THERE?" the yelling continued, panic rising in epic leaps and bounds.

"BEAN," I yelled while trying to remain patient. I knew she was just nervous. I would need to stay calm and make this simple for her. "GO OUT OUR FRONT DOOR - TURN RIGHT - WALK TIL YOU GET TO THE STREET - THEN JUST WAIT THERE."

"OH, OK." she said, sounding relieved....

and...

the still silence of the bathroom returned....

and then....

"WAIT! WHICH WAY IS MY RIGHT?!"

(She's going to be a Freshman.)

Monday, August 31, 2009

Things I've Been Doing Lately

No Ultrasound For You! V and I went to the doc's. Talk about excited! Big V talked nothing BUT having a chance to see the baby "one more time." (I know that he's been secretly researching how to read ultrasounds to determine the sex of the baby but he was trying to play it off like he just wanted to make sure the kidneys and liver were forming properly.) We get there, I pee in the cup, hop up on the table draped in an oversized paper towel -- and then we're told we're free to go. WOAH! Hold on there a minute, Missy! Last week you promised us an ultrasound. That is the only reason we came back. But that was only because we wanted to verify the positioning but it's obvious from the let me put my hands all over you test that baby has dropped into the proper heads down position so it's no longer necessary. That was the biggest let down we've had in a long time. To make matters worse the doc went on and on with her opinion that, yep, for certain I would not be going early and I'd just have to wait until the due date of September 20th.

Whooping It Up Prego Style! V and I went to the best wedding I've been to in a really long time! The weather was chilly for a summer on the lake wedding, but it was absolutely gorgeous out! The location was unbelievable. The food, terrific. The music, stellar. Everything was just perfect. Ever go to one of those weddings where you sit blissfully in the church pew looking at the bride and groom and just know that the planets lined up specifically for them, and that somehow, no matter what happens in life, these two will still be holding hands when they're 90 years old? Yeah, it was one of those weddings. And I am so glad we were able to be a part of it. V and I danced the night away... I wasn't worried since we were coming off the OB Visit dooming us to several more weeks of simmering. Although we were told that September 3rd would be the date by some guy who swears he's always right about these things and "has a feeling." I immediately thought, "YES!" and then changed it to, "NO! Dotter has her first official cheering at a football game thing Thursday night and I can't miss it."

Basement Bingo. V helped me organize the basement. Essentially I pointed at things and he moved them to where I told him to put it. The basement looks awesome! (Now, maybe we can shove the Bean down there with her friends when they come to visit.)

Dirt up to my Elbows. My dad dropped off several plants for my birthday. It was my job to re-pot them. I tried. I really, honestly tried. I managed to get them in pots - with potting soil - and tried to fluff out the roots like I've been told, and I added some water... so, let's just cross our fingers and see.... I feel really bad when I kill plants. I don't need the guilt right now.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

A little love...

I sent V a text letting him know we had another doctor's appointment this afternoon. It's a fun one because they'll do an ultrasound. I've been nervous because with my other pregnancies I underwent a plethora of ultrasounds, to the point I'd just hop on the table, lube up, and expertly swirl the magic wand around myself. This doctor is a minimalist: we had the initial "yep, it's a blob!" and the 20-week "So, do you want to find out the sex?" ultrasounds, but then absolutely nothing for the next four months. Now I'm nervous. What if something is wrong and they should have told us three months ago?

V, of course, oozes optimism. On more than one occasion I've accused him of living in a Fairy Land where nothing ever goes wrong, nobody ever gets hurt, and nothing bad ever happens to anyone. So, when I sent him the confirmation text I shouldn't have been surprised when I received:

Sweet! I can see our baby and his or her heart and head and arms and feet....

To which I appropriately replied:

If it still has all those parts....

Not to be affected by my negative attitude he responded with:

Well, let's hope he's not a cannibal and eating his own body parts. That would be creepy.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

If ever I become unexpectantly unemployed, I know I shall have success as a Bank Robber Planner. I don't actually know if I could get paid for that, probably only with stolen money, which would eventually be tracked back to me and cause great hassles for me and my family, but if need be, the skill is there. I don't actually want to commit the crime itself, per se, just plan it out.


Big V and I are becoming very skilled in the Art of Avoidance as well as Pondering All Possibilities. We are currently undergoing intense reviews in regards to "The Labor."


The Labor will be soon. Whether tonight or a few weeks from now, it's bound to happen, and we need to be ready.


I have the easy-going family. The "who cares if you lose an eye; you've got another one" type. I could show up at my parent's house a month after I had the baby and they'd be like Oh, Look! You had the baby! There is no threat or worry that they would disown me. Now, V's family is more like You've been in labor for eleven minutes and yet you didn't call?!


V & I both agree that what we don't need is forteen extra people crowding the delivery room while I attempt to push out life form. I can see it now, Well, she's been pushing now for two hours, V. We're getting hungry. Is there any way you can tell her to speed this up? Um... I can hear you!


Practicing due diligence we've forewarned every one of our wishes. We wish to be alone at the hospital and just concentrate on the giving birth part rather than the entertaining guests aspect of our 24-hour stay. We wish to hold our newborn baby in our arms first, rather than pass the poor child around through set after set of arms filled with germs among coughing, slobbering children who think they're big enough and strong enough to hold a baby on their own. We wish to be able to get up and hobble across the room to the bathroom without worrying if those fishnet grannie panties are flashing the peanut gallery. (Ok, I wish that one. V wasn't even aware of what happens after the birth...)


So here's our plan so far: Casually drop the girls off at my sister's or mother's house on a Friday night after work under the pretense of going to some adult establishment and then hightail it to the hospital. Call around two a.m. pretending to be too drunk to drive safely home. Ask if the girls can spend the night... or two (since we'll obviously be too "hung over" to be effective parents on Saturday). Sunday afternoon pick the girls up with an extra baby already in the car. Introduce new sibling.


Of course, this only works if that's when I actually go into labor. Odds are good though: Jelly Bean was a Saturday, Dotter was a Friday evening.


If it's during the work day I have to get out of there without the office crew catching on. The word will get out way too quick. Luckily for me I already have kids. Kids that are prone to last minute sicknesses and accidents - and I will use that as an excuse.

Obviously I need to grab V's attention while he's at work, but his boss happens to be married to one of V's Mother's Friends.... you can see the gossip wheel spinning already, can't you. Now, imagine the guilt trip V will be forced to ride if someone other than his mother finds out before her that he's headed to the hospital. Can't you imagine the quandry? Quite a quandry indeed.

To handle the "How to get out of work without letting the boss know the reason why" issue, we've decided that I'll send a quick text that reads NOW! At that moment, V will orchestrate a minor finger gnashing with the table saw. Not enough to lose a finger, but bad enough to warrant a trip to the ER. (We are headed in that direction anyway. A few stitches won't kill him.)

Ok, so there are some kinks we need to work through, but we're working on them. I'm sure everything will work out just the way it was meant to...

Sunday, August 23, 2009

I Survived!

The Forced Couples Baby Shower was not as bad as it could have been. A bit odd that V's mother insisted she had no idea who was invited, yet when people started filing in it was very apparent she had supplied a list of names and addresses to her friends. I must admit to feeling incredibly uncomfortable as V and I were handed gifts by people we were just meeting. To be fair, they seemed just as uncomfortable handing gifts to people they were just meeting.

A few odd comments here and there from V's mother and sister. I was being introduced to one lady standing next to V's mom when Mommy Dearest turned and announced, "This is only the second time I've seen her since she became pregnant." Now, this is a flat out lie, but I suppose you don't get quite the dramatic and pained response from, "I've made their life a living hell upon learning they were expecting, and she finally stopped coming around two months ago when she realized I will never let up..."

His sister told me to please call when we have the baby because they would love to know if it's a boy or a girl, but she's not telling us how to to things, it's just that it would be nice to know the name of someone they're related to, but to please do whatever we feel comfortable with.

Can we get any more passive?

All in all it wasn't a horrible experience. I didn't quite understand the American Flag cake, but I suppose we are increasing the overall citizenship of America by one, so perhaps it was fitting. We've got a jump on diapers and baby wipes thanks to Dave & Sarah. I cannot thank them enough for listening to what we needed and pulling through for us. It's a tough time with back to school supplies for my two existing children, clothes, school registration fees, etc., so we truly do appreciate the ginormous box of diapers!

Friday, August 21, 2009

With only three hours to go, it doesn't look like I'll make it to "intense labor mode" by 5pm. What's in three hours, you ask? Well, that would be the forced couples baby shower V and I will be racing to attend.

His family insists on hosting a shower. Sounds easy enough. Wrecked with drama, it is.

V just called... he had stopped by his parent's house and his mom asked if we were planning on going to the shower tonight. (Um, yeah... it is for us, right?) That led to a discussion about who was invited. V said he didn't know; the guest list was taken over by the aunts. V told me he's a little nervous about who they may have invited. With my luck it will be all his ex-girlfriends. What's odd about this is that we never wanted a shower in the first place. We have everything we need, except for diapers & baby wipes, but we were told (many times) that it was selfish to deny V's mom this opportunity to throw us a shower. And yet she doesn't seem to be involved in the planning process whatsoever. (Maybe we're supposed to give her a gift?)

So the guests will be a surprise. Not the gifts, though. No, that was explained to V in detail. Since we "won't accept anything nice from anyone" they're just giving us gift cards to WalMart.

Boy, doesn't this just sound like an infinite amount of fun!

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

The beginning of the long, drawn out end....

30 days to the due date. I'm actually finding myself quite nervous. I can't make it up a flight of stairs without getting completely out of breath; how on earth will I survive hours of labor? At this point I think I have a better chance of pushing my car up a hill with one hand. Pushing something the size of a watermelon out my yoo-hoo, which, for the record, is the size of a grape.... Ok, I actually don't know if that's accurate, but it's got to be close. Anyway, you get my point. The car would be easier.

We had an appointment Tuesday. Time for some fun! Pee in the cup, get weighed, measure the abdomen, have something scraped against my rectum, blood pres --- Wait, scrape WHERE?! Yeah, something else they never tell you about. But I survived.

Since I have this odd little habit of getting dizzy, seeing floaters, blacking out and vomitting all over myself, etc., the doc decided to hook me up to a monitor. They took V and I to this darkened room with the largest, comfiest chair ever in the middle of the room. After I kicked V out of the comfy chair and over to the hard, waiting-type one, I was strapped up. One monitor followed the baby, the other my uterus. V fell asleep right away, so he missed the twenty minutes of fun. (I told him he had to pack a bag for the hospital filled with things that would keep him awake, otherwise I might kill him if I see him sleeping while pain is ripping me in half. He agreed that he didn't really want to die, so he's going to throw some entertaining items together.)

The doc came back in and checked the read-out commenting, "Oh, you have some pretty regular contractions... can you feel them?" Uh, that would be a YES. For the past few days, in fact, that would be a yes. I explained I could work through them (I wanted her to think I was really strong and able, not weak and wimpy like some of those other pregnant moms-to-be). I did not tell her that the way I defined "work through" was grab onto whatever was closest to me and squeeze my eyes tight while praying I survived the next 45 seconds. (So far, God has answered my prayers and I've survived and I thank Him for that.)

I casually tossed out, "But those are just those Braxton-Hicks contractions, right?" (I wanted to impress V with my vast prego-medico terminology.) To which the doctor replied, "No. They're the real things, they just aren't doing anything to your body to progress labor." Contractions, say what?!

Let me get this straight... for the past couple days I've been experiencing "real" contractions that have done absolutely nothing for me. And this could continue for how long? "Well, until your body is ready." Like in two days? Or a month? Or two weeks after my due date -- which is six weeks, you know.... "It could be any of those scenarios, but I think you'll be right at your due date based on your past two pregnancies."

So, anyway, I hate my doctor now. I mean, any woman who can look another woman in the eye and say with a clear conscious, "You may experience contractions for the next thirty days" does not have my respect. I'm pretty black-and-white when it comes to things like this, and she is no longer my friend.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Passive Aggressive much?

One of my professional duties is issuing notices of violation and citations when property owners are not following our zoning codes. (Think of a police officer busting a speeder... except I don't get the cool bullet proof vest, tazer, or car with lights & sirens.)

I don't expect people to like me, much less thank me, for doing my job, because it usually means they were doing something they very much wanted to do that I made them stop doing. And people don't generally want to thank me for that. But every once in a while a "thank you" comes through to me. Here's one I received this afternoon from a gentleman that complied with stopping and fixing a non-compliant situation:

I do want to thank you for taking the time to note the "end to the matter." These have not been easy solutions for me or to my needs.

Losing the many thousands of dollars on the mobile home, does not hurt as much as I will not be able to use my farm until I get a caretaker to live there. Which probably means I will never be able to use my farm again. And since I am almost 79 years old, doesn't really mean forever.

I would not allow this 20 years ago. Or even 15 years ago, when I spent many months trying to work with your town to bring sewer/water to my land, I think over those years ... not once did anyone in your town ever show the courtesy of answering one letter, return one call, or agree to meet with me. I simply decided not to deal with your town and never did since. Except now, you came to me through my back door and dictated how I can use my land.

Now I am weak with Lung Cancer, tired most of the time. I lost my younger son 3 years ago from a brain tumor so I have no one to leave the legacy of what I can do or to whom the land should belong to.

I have protected the Indian Mounds there .. discovered in 1929 and not developed the land with tickey tack houses ... What I should have done was dig it all up and throw it onto your side of "my fence." (as you don't even have a fence of your own.)

I am glad you are content with the outcome, God know why you are, but apparently you are.

I feel the needles from the voodoo doll already...

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Not a problem.

As a parent you never know what impact television viewing will have on your children. I jump up to change channels when the preview of a scary movie comes on because frankly, I don't want to deal with nightmares and such. Dotter, especially, tends to worry and be leaning towards the extremo anxiety side of life.

So when Dotter informed me she watched a show about 16-year old Minnesota conjoined twins Brittany & Abby I immediately thought, "Great! Here it comes... a thousand questions, tons of 'what if's', she's going to be a nervous wreck until this baby is born..."

But (as often the case with children) she surprised me wishing upon wishing that I would give birth to conjoined twins. "Wouldn't it be great to never feel alone?" she asked. "They wouldn't be afraid when they went to sleep, and they could just always have a friend with them."

"What if one wanted to watch one TV show, and the other wanted to watch something else?" She thought about this for a second before coming up with the perfect solution: "I would get them two little TVs and put them next to each other and they would each have their own earphones so they could hear their own show and they could also sit together and share popcorn at the same time!"

This is why I love her so much! And why I'm putting her on the next ballot for president.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Gymnastics Wannabe

I have always been impressed with gymnasts. Perhaps because I'm the least flexible person alive. I've never been able to do that bend & reach test in gym class. My legs don't even lay flat against the ground. It would take every ounce of my being just to reach down to my thighs. I'd be left grunting and groaning, begging myself to 'just. reach. knee....' while surrounded by the most flexible humans on the face of the planet. "Good job, Mary Sue!" the teacher would praise. "I love how you can get your head under you legs and reach out three feet past your toes!"

Jelly Bean took gymnastics for quite a while. All the coaches said the same thing "she's a natural." And she was. Is. She just has this way about her that screams "gymnast." But, as is most things with the Bean, she judges herself against everyone better than her, and quits. I'd point out she was only ten and these girls were 16 and their mothers put them in gymnastics the day they stopped breastfeeding. But she insisted that she wanted to quit. (If she's not the best, she doesn't want to subject herself to the redicule she believes in her heart she's going to get.)

Dotter takes gymnastics. She loves it. She is not good at it. She is all knobby knees and gawky arms. But she is SO PROUD and SO SERIOUS and I can't help but have tears in my eyes when I watch her.

But I have lots of faith in my future Gymnastics Olympian Cletus the Fetus. Last night s/he was practicing this amazing move where he placed his little hands down on my pelvic floor, bent his body into the perfect handstand, legs extended, toes pointed perfectly (I could tell this because they were in my throat and all I had to do was open my mouth and say "Ahh" and sure enough - perfectly pointed toes!). Then he lowered his legs into the splits - still on his hands - head bulging out right above my panty line, one leg sticking out of the right side of my rib cage, the other leg sticking out of the left side. And then, as if that wasn't amazing enough, he started to slowly move his hands in such a way that his legs acted like the main rotor of a helicopter! In a complete 360-degrees he circled my womb with legs stretched outright!

I am so proud of my little gymnast-to-be. However, I will have to speak to Cletus the Fetus about being aware of the space around him when he practices these moves. I believe I have a punctured spleen, my liver has been hacked in half and my kidneys are missing some pieces. I mean, some of this stuff may not be important to him, but it's special to me, and I don't want him disrespecting his surroundings or his mother's belongings... especially of the internal organ kind.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

An Open Letter In Response to Judgment

Dear School Board Chairperson,

Thank you for the five minute "entry interview" conducted last evening. I do hope that was plenty of time for you to decide whether or not my second grader will experience the honor and privilege of attending your school. Oh, wait... it's not actually your school, per se, you just happen to be the current school board chairperson. Well, I'm sure those other members who glanced nervously at the ground while you conducted the "interview" also believe you are the sole person in charge.

I was just tickled pink when you brought up the fact that I was unmarried. It's sometimes difficult for me to impress upon my daughter, who was sitting right next to me - you remember her, don't you? Nervous looking 7-year old... the one blushing, who couldn't quite look in your eyes... yes, that was her -- anyway, it's sometimes difficult for me to impress upon my daughter how socially shamed she should feel because her mother chose to get out of a very difficult and very unhealthy marriage. I won't bother telling you the sordid reasons why I chose to leave because, well, honestly you wouldn't care one way or the other.

Private schools should be for the cream of the crop. The best of the best! Which you made clear I was not. I think it was the passive question, "Is this just a short term thing or is this something that you can afford long term?"

You're right. I'm not rich, like you flaunt. Nor am I educated, as you like to enjoy reminding all other peons. (For the record, I tried to bow down to your Attorney Title, but my bulging stomach got in the way.) But I'm not wishing to send my child to this school because I think people will envy me assuming I am wealthy.

The most enjoyable moment came when you asked me if I regularly attended church "anywhere." You made it sound just like my face would look if I had to pick up someone's handkerchief they had just finished hawking up huge wads of phlegm in. I thought I answered well, and even may have presented myself in a different light by describing the MOMS program I was also involved in, and which I believe in wholeheartedly. Your response was a curt, "Well, we don't have that here."

I guess I was worried exiting the entry interview so soon after arriving... enrollment is down, this child wishes to attend, and I don't know many schools that would turn down $4,000 for school tuition during a slow season. But then again, I'm not the school board chairperson, am I? And the decision to attend is actually up to you and the rest of the board.

I do hope Dotter can attend. It's where she would feel comfortable, but whatever happens will happen, and we'll make the best of it. We always have.

Monday, August 10, 2009

6 weeks to go... or 34 weeks down (depending on how you look at it)

Cletus the Fetus has a new trick. I swear I'm not making this up. Big V was there. He saw the whole thing.

After a particularly harsh day of Ultimate Womb Fighting I was laying in bed attempting to relax my uterus, which was working as well as if you had been beaten in the abdomen with a metal bat and then expected to gently release the pain through visions of kittens and bunny rabbits, which is saying, it wasn't working at all and I was in a lot of pain and wanted to ensure that everyone knew how misearable I was.

Anyway, V, in his infinite pregnancy wisdom, leans towards me and makes the comment (while SMIRKING no less): "How can the baby just moving hurt you?"

At that exact moment Cletus the Fetus actually stood upright in my womb, extended his little arm and gave his father the finger right before completing a back layout with a twist.

In stellar response mode V jumped completely off the bed, back stuck against the wall, eyes as big as saucers and yells, yes, yells: "WHAT THE HELL WAS THAT?!"

"That, my dear, is exactly why I'm twenty-two seconds away from performing my own c-section."

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Ohmmm...

So with all the trouble I've been having trying to stay upright and alert in my impregnated condition, I've been told to relax, try to take it easy, and not get stressed out.

Last night I attempted to watch television while holding on to the right side of my bulging middle section and fighting back tears, convinced someone had shoved an invisible machete into my womb. Big V tried to get my mind off the excruciating pain by asking the world's stupidest questions of all time: "How do you feel?" "Are you ok?" "Do you want anything to eat?" When that wasn't proving to be effective he tried placating me by tuning the television to the Duggar Family show. Have you seen this? Smiling, pleasant, well-spoken mother of 18. Yes, EIGHTEEN! And she birthed every single one of them. And never has a negative word to say about anything, much less the blessing of pregnancy. This particular episode focused on the "Bradley Method of Natural Childbirth." Natural. As in no drugs whatsoever. Kudos to you, Mrs. Duggar, but I'll be ordering a double epidural straight up, with a tequila chaser. I've already packed my tip money.

Poor Dotter was nervous, you could tell because she kept running to get me things she thought would work, including an ice pack she insisted on holding directly to my stretched flesh. I tried everything: shifting positions, large glasses of water, the exercises Mrs. Duggar suggested, breathing techniques and a shower... the pain finally subsided around eleven o'clock.

At least I could finally try to get some much needed sleep. I have claimed six of the most fabulous pillows ever to be strategically placed around my body, under my abdomen, between my knees, against my back and holding my head. Big V has been left with the one flat joke of a pillow. (I really hope he can hold his head up straight again someday.) Once placed in my dreamy featherly fashion I fell fast asleep.... finally... I could r e l a x . . . .

Until Dotter came running in our room scared out her little mind at 3:30 in the morning... dog barking hysterically... I'm hitting V to "get up! get up!" (Like I'm going to go check out what has Satan sounding so flippin ferocious!) And I'm holding a shaking Dotter who happens to be squishing Cletus the Fetus which is making me feel like throwing up while V is staggering down the hall in his boxer shorts... and then I hear V talking - talking loud - and someone talking back to V and I'm all like, "Dude! It is not proper social ettiquette to come calling at this early hour!" But all I can seem to make myself do is reach over for my glasses so I can see who is about to murder me and my child.

Eventually V came back to the bedroom to check on our safety... ok, really he just stomped back into the room, muttering to himself, and flopped back down on his side of the bed.

"Uh... wanna tell me what that was all about?" I ventured.

"Damn police." And he's turning over pulling the sheet up to his chin....

"Uh, yeah, I'm going to need a little bit more than that."

Apparently, as V staggered down the hall to see what was upsetting the dog, he also noticed flashlights being shone through our windows from the yard... which is what Dotter saw when she woke up seconds earlier. Getting to the door he noticed figures dressed darkly walking around the house and in the driveway, the offending flashlights now directed into his eyes. It was our County Sheriff's Department attempting to serve an old warrant to someone who hasn't lived at this address in years.

Now, I'm not a police officer and certainly wouldn't want to offend anyone in such an honorable profession, but I can't help but wonder - coming from the side of logic and common sense: You have this person, this bad person, who used to live here, but then disappeared to a place that you don't know... all you have is this old address... but when you look at the address you see that a few years ago it was sold and this new guy bought it (and he happens to not have any outstanding warrants). The new guy not only bought it, but has been fixing it up, and has this truck that's registered in his name sitting in the driveway. Still, you wonder if maybe there's a chance that new guy might know bad person. Hmmmm.... maybe you should ask....

At what point does "let's descend on the home like some ballsy third world militia plotting to grab hostages in the black of the night" sound more logical than "perhaps we should stop by around 7 or 8pm when they're home and just ask?"

Sunday, August 2, 2009

You got something on your chin...

It's not everyone that can say they've completely blacked out in a church and vomitted all over themselves, resulting in being carried out of the church on a stretcher. But now I can say it! Been there, done that, people. What's next on my list?

Ok, ok, so you want details.... geesh, don't get so antsy.

Alright. At 33 weeks pregnant it's hard to find a nice dress suitable for a funeral, but I found one. A lovely black v-neck with a low key dark red design that just covered my knees. Threw on my black heels a second before I got out of the car and I was the epitome of "classy pregnant woman attends memorial." A few psalms, a few prayers, a few up and down moments and I was feeling the effect of lack of air conditioning. However, not wanting to draw attention to myself I decided that I should simply sit down and not attempt the long 'standing wait & walk through' of countless pews of communion.

A few minutes later I tugged on V's shirt sleeve to tell him I wasn't going to make it. I honestly assumed he'd say something along the lines of, "I was really looking forward to that wafer... can you hang on a few more minutes?" but he surprised me by taking one look at me and asking if I needed to go to the hospital. Perhaps he saw something I didn't. "I'm not going to make it," I whispered again.

Fast forward to what I remembered next and that would be me slouched over against some burly body in a church pew wondering why the color of V's shirt changed and wondering who the hell threw oatmeal all over my dress and what the heck was spewing out of my mouth.

It took me a second or two to realize the oatmeal was actually vomit that was still spilling out of my mouth. Oh, and vomit I did! Glancing down I quickly assessed I had at least a gallon of oatmeal looking gunk streaming from my left breast all the way down to my lap. Where it was pooling up. You know, like collecting. In a puddle. In my lap.

Thinking the best thing to do was get me out of the church pew the burly men (now recognized as local EMTs who were also in attendance) lugged me up and collectively hid/held the vomit from falling off my dress onto the carpet. That was very thoughtful, because who knew if there was a wedding planned for later that day? Can you imagine how ticked the bride would be walking down an aisle of stomach waste?

Sitting me down in a chair in the lobby the EMTs busied themselves with taking my blood pressure, looking in my eyes, pricking my finger in an attempt to squeeze out a drop of blood, all the while asking me important questions: Do you know where you are? Are you having trouble seeing? How many weeks along are you? Do you hurt anywhere? Do you feel the baby moving?

Important as all that was, there was a much more pressing matter on my mind: Communion was almost complete. The service was ending. Which meant any minute now a whole lot of people were about to walk by to gawk at me.

Lucky for me a bright orange, clunky stretcher arrived just in time! Now, if you ever find yourself being transported from a chair to a stretcher with a dress full of vomit, I suggest you nominate someone in charge of "Swear On Your Life You Will Not Let This Dress Go In Any Direction Which Would Possibly Show My Pregnant Thighs Or A Beaver Shot." I, unfortunately, had not nominated anyone. This led to a lot more stress and anxiety on my part as I tried to push down my dress and hold the oxygen mask while being shoved around and strapped down. In fact, as I was being wheeled out, I remember looking down and whining through my OxyMask, "my dress is crooked!" Because it is very important to maintain whatever is left of your dignity if at all possible.

The ride to the hospital was fun - although I feel somewhat cheated by the silent sirens. At least I got the flashing lights. There was also a tense moment when I thought no one was paying attention to the road and I about flew off the stretcher to grab the steering wheel myself (I was unaware there was a very quiet driver).

V sat next to me with the most scared looking expression on his face. I wanted to ease his fear a bit by reminding him that he couldn't possibly be a weenie in this situation since he spends the majority of his time watching scary movies. Please, a chic with some goopy stuff oozing out of her mouth was nothing compared to the happenings on Elm Street. But I just couldn't bring myself to be sarcastic to someone who looked so scared and had actual tears in his eyes. Looking at V it hit me that maybe this might not turn out so good after all. And that made me scared. Which made me decide that I didn't like that fearful, afraid look on his face and it won't be allowed when I actually give birth.

After attempting to strangle me with the oxygen hose... see, the EMTs forgot to disconnect the oxygen. This meant the hose and mask wrapped around my face and neck was still plugged into a nonmoveable connection in the squad. No matter how hard they tugged at the stretcher to get me out, my head could only go so far. They apologized, though, so it's all good. It's not like I started turning blue... except then they just left the hose dragging, so halfway down the hospital hallway it got all tangled up in the wheel of the stretcher, quickly forcing my head down and to the right at a sharp angle. After screaming that I was being choked - again - they fixed it.

In the end it was just treated as a simple, "You're pregnant, pregnant women get dizzy, this happens" diagnosis. Although I did make a mental note when the doctor explained "...when you lose consciousness it is quite common to also lose control of your bodily functions, causing you to vomit or have a bowel movement..." that vomitting was actually the better of the two possible outcomes.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Windex Clean

If I wasn't so damn scared of getting caught I'd run outside and snap a picture right now. But I don't think I could explain straight-faced, "Sorry, didn't mean to invade your privacy - just thought this would make an excellent post!"

Some Grandma is walking a toddler outside our office. As in, the kid is strapped in one of those harness things that dogs wear except it's been cutesified to look like a monkey with the world's longest tail is hanging on to this kid's back. Grandma is seemingly bored following the monkey around (can you blame her? She's walking up and down sidewalks holding a tail), but compensates by puffing on the cigarette she has drooping from the corner of her mouth. If she isn't careful ash will burn monkey's tail. Who am I kidding? It probably has scorched the fur multiple times by now.

Anyway, Smokin' Granny isn't exactly paying attention to the toddler on the other end of the monkey... which is why I'm at my desk laughing my arse off because I had a clear view of toddler toddling up the sidewalk beelining it to our door... and SMACK! Just like a bird - didn't see that glass comin', did ya, big fella?

Monday, July 27, 2009

Is this for real?

I'm not a big fan of those on-line quizzes... you know, the kind reminiscent to the back-in-the-day Teen Magazine quiz where you answered ten vague questions and they told you what kind of kisser you were. This during the time the most passionate kiss I ever experienced was with my wrist.

I guess I just don't buy into the fact that a ten question on-line quiz can tell me how many children I'll have, what house I should live in, or which part of the country I'm best suited. At this point in my life I think I know what I want. (Now, how I get there is an entirely different story.)

Alas, I was suckered into taking a quiz... a handwriting quiz. You write some simple words down and disect away: open letters versus closed letters, slanting to the left or right or standing straight up and down, tails of letters short and chopped off or long and lingering... this is my type of quiz!

This is what I learned about myself after my ten word sampling:

You tend to be logical and practical.
You are guarded with your emotions.
You are well-adjusted and adaptable.
You tend to be skeptical.
You tend to be unswayed by emotional arguments.
You might not be following your heart - for example, you always wanted to be an artist, but you have a career in finance.

How frickin' right on is that?!

Hungry, are you?

Satan ate our wall.

Satan being the dog. V's dog. Not mine. I would not tolerate a dog like this. It is, undeniably, the most destructive dog on the face of the planet. There is nothing off limits to the dog. There is nothing the dog won't try to destroy. The house and everything in it and around it seems to belong to the dog. We just happen to live amongst its belongings. I'm actually surprised I haven't woken up to the dog gnawing its way through my tibia.

The dog existed with V before I met him. Just as my girls existed with me before I met V. It seems only fair, as pointed out by V, that since I can keep the kids he can keep the dog.

I've pointed out that the kids haven't peed on the carpet, or puked on the floor, or eaten my most favorite pair of heels, or chewed through three couches (yes, three). V pointed out that they do mess up the bathroom with their make-up and hair ties and wet towels on the floor. I pointed out that I can make them clean it up, where as the dog just sits there with a smirk on its face watching the poor schmuck clean up doggie do.

The dog is naughty. The dog is destructive. I know this and yet the shenanigans this weekend still threw me over the edge.

V was gone all day Saturday installing carpet for a "friend" who wasn't really a friend of his at all, just someone his sister's husband was friends with, and therefore pushed into the category of "Don't Charge Me - We're Friends, Remember?" (I got to hear later about how much that job would've cost - should've cost! - anyone else. I got to hear about that a lot.)

I woke up by 8 - which is sad, because I used to be able to sleep until 10am easy, but not anymore, thanks to this watermelon attempting to bust through my abdomen. Dotter woke up around then, too. I spent the day washing laundry. Dotter spent the day running around with Satan, making beds for her to sleep on, throwing bones that were never brought back, running around in a game of doggie tag. The dog, in my estimation, received plenty of exercise and plenty of attention. Not to mention every time the washing machine drained the dog sprinted down the basement steps to bark ferociously at the opposing appliance.

Anyway, V was back by 4:30 just as Dotter and I were on our way out to Cheerleading Registration (for her; not me. I know you were wondering). V offered to go with since he hadn't seen us all day. We left at 4:50... registered, stopped at my mother's for about twenty minutes, ran to WalMart to get a skimmer for the pool (and a new raft that was on sale), visited the drive-thru at Taco Bell and made it back home by 6:30pm.

For the record, an hour and a half is plenty of time for a dog to chew through the wainscoting, destroy the base trim, chair rail, and trim around the door, get its teeth around the metal fire door to dent and scratch that, pull out insulation, start gnawing on the piano, and vomit.

V thinks this happened because the dog obviously didn't get enough attention throughout the day. (Can't wait until Cletus the Fetus appears, taking more precious one-on-one time away from the dog.) V also suggested we just wait until the dog dies before we fix up the house and everything it destroys. He estimates about 8 more years of life for the dog. I'm estimating 8 more weeks before I find myself residing in the state mental institution, rocking alone in the corner while mumbling "no bite... no bite... drop it... drop it..."

Job Title

It's almost 9:30 in the morning... can I call it quits?

This job is getting to me. My pregnancy seems to be taking any patience I may have had and is using it for some other valid reason I'm sure. I've been here for an hour and all I've heard is whining. I wish there was a clause in my contract that allowed me to say, "Look, not only are you an adult, but you're actually considered a professional adult. Professional adults don't whine."

I can't help but be brought back to when I was a whiney 9-year old with my mother standing over me saying, "You can stand here and complain for twenty minutes, or you can get started on this and be done in twenty minutes - either way it still needs to be done."

In a few minutes I will be sending out my third eMail describing the same requirements to the same self-entitled person. *sigh* Really I'm nothing more than a babysitter for really big babies who get paid way more than me.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Some things are better left unsaid.

V and I had yet another baby appointment yesterday. It was scheduled for 3:45 and I think we waiting about an hour. Lovely time, this waiting.

We had a loud-talker who insisted on conversing with her friend via her cell phone. We were all suddenly invited into her world where Shaina is going to get her ass kicked the second she gets out of jail, 'cuz she don't play that! Also, we're now very concerned because no one knows where Katie is - she might be in jail, too, but her brother isn't saying nothing.

Then came two teen-looking girls, each pushing a stroller containing a toddler along with two very active boys running circles around them. While Teen-Looking Mom #1 pushed her stroller up and down the hallways, Teen-Looking Mom #2 had her blood drawn. This left the second baby stroller (with the toddler still in it) pushed next to the water fountain with the poor child staring at the wall. While toddler was nervous and whimpered quite a bit, there never was a full out wail. The boys - about 4 & 5 years old - jumped from seat to seat... literally JUMPED from seat to seat, like they were frogs manuevering their way through lily pad world. When they were bored with that they went to the check-in counter and pulled out all the tissues one at a time from each tissue box. (There were three.) One punched the other one in the melon causing him to scream, "Knock it off or I'll kill you!" The receptionist looked frightened and afraid and decided not to actually make eye contact with the kids, much less tell them to sit down and be quiet; that this was not the way to behave in a waiting room.

Finally teen mom came back, oblivious to the fact that her boys were hanging from the suspended television in the corner of the room and that her little girl who had been held hostage in the stroller was already mentally preparing what to tell her therapist when she was old enough to pay for one. Teen-looking Mom #1 came back from hiding in the hallway with her baby and announced, "I hate going places with you 'cause you can't control your kids."

I glanced over at V and could tell he was busy pleading with God to please, please, pretty please don't give us a child like any of those....


The appointment took us to after closing time, so V and I walked out into a darkened waiting room and creepy dimly lit hall. A technician met up with us at the elevator and calmly asked when I was due. "Two more months," I answered proudly. After all, I am a warrior princess - this is a piece of cake! (Secretly I was a mess. I had come to this appointment planning on the doctor announcing there had been a mix-up on the due date and I was actually due today so let's induce immediately! She didn't do that. Not at all. In fact, she didn't even come close.)

"Oh." replied the tech cheerily. "So you're having twins!" Why does everybody say this?!

"Uh, no... just one."

"Really?" Why is she sounding so doubtful and looking at me like I'm a big liar?

"Yep. Just one."

"How many ultrasounds have you had?"

"Just the one... well, two - but the first one didn't really count because it was, like, still a yolk... but then the one at 20 weeks and it just showed just the one."

"Humm."

[crickets chirping]

"Does that happen often?"

"What?"

"That people have twins after being told there's only one? .... Because I actually googled 'surprise twin births' but the results really focused on people that were initially told there was only one, but then later on at the 20 week ultrasound they were surprised to find there was two... "

"Well, yeah, it does happen sometimes."

"Like that, right - not like you're pushing out the baby and ready to relax and the doc's like, 'Woah! Hold on here - what the heck is this? Another one?!' "

"No. It happens like that too. It's not common, but I've actually been there when it has... [noting my blood rapidly draining from my face] ... but not here at this particular hospital."


V did cartwheels and handsprings to the car while yelling out such things like, "How cool would that be?!" and "Can you imagine? That'd be AWESOME!" He said other stuff, too, but I couldn't make it out while I was crawling across the parking lot trying not to have a panic attack.