Friday, September 30, 2005


A chicken and an egg are lying in bed. The chicken is leaning against the headboard smoking a cigarette, with a satisfied smile on its face.

The egg, looking a bit pissed off, grabs the sheet, rolls over, and says, "Well, I guess we finally answered THAT question."

Thursday, September 29, 2005

Mmmm Mmmmm good!

He's on Leno right now. Yummy.
Hey, Genuine? This is my list. Seriously.

One of the lesser known Jedi

Overheard just now, as all three kids play in the backyard...

SugarBear: I'm Luke Skywalker!

SugarPlum: Oh, yeah? Well who is Bug?

SugarBear: Him? Oh, he's Mike Skywalker.

Wednesday, September 28, 2005

Field Trip!!

What a difference a week makes! This time last week, I was stressed out and feeling resentful about our visitor. SD took him to the airport Monday morning. He got home and from what SIL says, he is feeling much better. Imagine.

That little trip to the airport - no, not the close one, the one farther away and just over the state line since there were no seats available on flights out of the local airport (not that I'm complaining, he's gone, right?)- forced SD to reschedule his physical to this morning. The morning of SugarPlum's field trip. The trip that left at the exact same moment that Bear has to be at school. So a quick call to a good friend (Thanks, Billy!!) saved our butts. Billy came over at 8:00 this morning and I walked over to SugarPlum's school to join the third grade on their trip to the Historical Park for a lesson in pioneer living.

They were encouraged to dress appropriate to the period (1800s). Yeah, because bonnets are a staple in my eight year old's wardrobe. (We actually have these great jumpers that I bought her when we lived in England. They are so sweet and old fashioned and girly. I bought them in several sizes before we moved. The best thing about them? She loves them!) Since we were without a bonnet, I suggested we just braid her hair down her back. She also wanted to wear a bandanna as a kerchief. She looks like a cancer patient with it on. But she was happy.

We were also encouraged to pack a lunch that was period appropriate. That was fun. No PB&J. No go-gurt. You get the idea. So I had SD get some fried chicken and biscuits at Kroger last night. That's as pioneer as I get. SD pointed out as I packed it today that the pioneers didn't have ziploc bags. I told him to shove it. I wrapped it all - chicken, biscuits, some apple wedges and a bottle of water - in a towel and placed it in a basket. Very pioneer-y, no? Then I put my Diet Coke in my purse & headed out.

I know. I never saw Ma Ingalls with a 20 oz Diet coke out on the prairie either, but work with me people. If the Olsens had carried Diet Coke in their store, you know Ma would have had some. Shut up.

The "pioneer experience" was really pretty cool. They got to do a lot of hands-on stuff. Everything went well until the very last activity of the day . Their group was looking through the herb garden. SP was fascinated. They were allowed to smell the plants and encouraged to take leaves from a few of them. She dropped one of hers and then the bell was rung signalling that it was time to leave. I told her it was time to move along and (cue the music) she broke down sobbing. "But Mom! It was MINT!!" As if you can't get that at Kroger. She was pissed at me all the way back to the school. I was so aggravated with her. I wanted to just yell, "Shut up and get over it already!" But I didn't. Thank heaven for Diet Coke.

I'll let the pictures tell the rest of the story. They'll be on flickr soon too.

My chemo kid looking totally enthralled with the whole knitting lesson.

That's her in the back churning butter.

Scrubbing laundry on the washboard.

Spinning wool into yarn with a Drop Spindle. (dig those "pioneer sneakers!")

Playing old-fashioned games: The hoop

Grinding corn into meal.

The kids were so good. I was a little apprehensive, but pleasantly surprised. They are a pretty good class. It was a nice change from some of the kids in her class in Texas. The stories I could tell...

Wait! That's why I have a blog, isn't it?! Well, then. You may have to hear about that sometime soon.

Anyway. Gotta get to bed. My pioneer ass is dragging. So, I will take it up to my pioneer tempur-pedic mattress. Bite me, Ma Ingalls.

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

After the rain comes...

the mud!! This is what happens when you say, "Sure you can play outside! Be sure to wear your wellies!" They took those rain boots of within three minutes of getting outside. They literally rolled in the mud. I had to strip them down and hose them off before they could even come inside for a shower. But they had fun, by golly!

Monday, September 26, 2005

Eating for a Good Cause

I had every intention of posting this several days ago, but forgot. If you haven't already eaten dinner, try this!

All day today, Chili's Restaurants are donating all profits to St. Jude's Children's Hospitals. A minimum of $100,000 will be donated.

So turn off the stove, load up the kids and go out to eat. It's for the children. If you can't go tonight, the rest of the month they have other things that they are doing to raise money.

Sunday, September 25, 2005

How NOT to improve my self image...

1. Look me in the eyes and smile that adorable two-year-old smile of yours. Then glance up to my forehead, giggle and say, "SNAKES!" (Botox, anyone?)

2. Tell me, when I accidently rolled on your leg while snuggling you, "I think my leg is broked."

"No, Bear, it is not broken."

"Yes, Mommy. You are so big that you broked my leg."

3. Come downstairs after your nap and hug me. While pressing your little face into my hips, start singing a song. "Baby Beluga."

4. After relating said "Whale Song Incident" to you, tell me, "Maybe you can use it for inspiration."

What? You thought I wouldn't blog that?

Saturday, September 24, 2005

Saturday has been a little better

Jeepers, this is a rambling, scattered post! Sorry about that. It appears to be more of a stream of consciousness type of thing. Very appropriate for my state of mind lately, though! Read at your own risk.

Well, folks. You people are the best. I really needed all of your validation on the PopPop situation. He is going home Monday. He agreed that he needed to be near his doctor. Things were a little better for a few hours. SD is still pretty upset. He keeps asking what he could have done differently. He can't be convinced that there is nothing he could have done differently. He is a good son. But he is also a good husband and father. He has his priorities straight. He is not responsible for his father's choices.

We took PopPop out to the dairy near our home. We thought we could feed the goats, play on the tractors, etc and then have supper and ice cream out there. He went inside shortly after we got there to "sit down and wait for us." After we had exhausted the "fun" stuff, there were still a couple of hours until supper. So, we decided to just have some ice cream and head home for supper. We found PopPop and he had already had ice cream. Damn it. He couldn't even wait to have ice cream with his grandchildren. And then, he sighed and was impatient while WE had our ice cream.

The kids had fun in spite of that. They each got to pick out a pumpkin. I got to get some "Indian" corn and gourds to decorate with. We all got yummy ice cream. Actually, I got a Cinnamon Cider Milkshake. Yum. I may go back tomorrow.

My mom was stuck in Houston during the hurricane. But she said that they got a little wind and rain, but not much else. Right now, though, they have no power. She was supposed to fly out tomorrow morning, but all flights out of Houston have been cancelled. She's hoping to leave Monday.

Bear's school picnic was good. The boys had a blast playing. I got to meet some of the parents. I even ran into a friend I knew when we were stationed in England. We were on the OCSC board together. Her little girl is in Bear's class. Small world.

SugarDaddy thought I should let you know - in case you hadn't guessed what a giant dork I am - that I locked my keys in the van at the picnic. I tried to call while he was taking his dad to the ER. I left a message and, thankfully, he got it. He came by on his way from the Urgent Care clinic to the ER.

The picnic really messed up naptime. Bear didn't take one at all and Bug's was pretty short. But, it was okay, because they really did have a good time.

Ooh, I forgot. PopPop bought kites for the kids while he & SD were at the beach last week. We went out Thursday night to fly them across the street at the school. They had a blast. I thought I would share this in the interest of making PopPop actually seem human. He loved seeing them fly the kites. They had such a good time. Pictures of the kite flying and dairy trip are here.

Friday, September 23, 2005

PopPop...POP go the bullets into my head

PopPop and SD were back from the hospital by about 3:30. Do you want to know what was wrong? Do you? Nothing. Abso-fucking-lutely nothing. He was a little dehydrated and hadn't eaten. So he needs to eat and drink. The man is diabetic. He knows this. Grrrrrrrrr. Basically, all of what is wrong is self inflicted. He feels bad. I understand that and would normally be sympathetic to that. To a point.

I love my father-in-law, I do. But I just do NOT like the man anymore. I used to. He used to be a charming, loving, lovable person. A little odd, a little self-centered (but what man isn't), but in general, a pleasant person to be with.

But now? Oh, geez. I wish that there were words that could express the aggravation this man brings to our lives. Please understand that I am going to sound like a royal bitch when you read this. Because really, it's not any one thing that seals it. It's all forty skillion little things.

After SD's mom died eleven years ago, PopPop started a downhill slide that has yet to stop. He began having heart problems. Had quintuple bypass surgery. Then, he had a stroke. He was pissed that he couldn't drive for a while after that, but he was having seizures and other issues. He has never eaten well & it just got worse. He was diagnosed with diabetes. He still eats like crap. He will tell you how healthy he eats. He puts Splenda in his coffee and buys sugar free ice cream and jelly. But I will tell you that in the past 24 hours, he has eaten six donuts.

A little over two and a half years ago, he was driving from his home in Mississippi to visit a friend in Sarasota, Fl. About the time he got to Pensacola, he had an accident. His car rolled several times across several lanes. Luckily it was early morning and there wasn't much traffic yet. He is lucky to be alive. As it is, he ended up losing his left arm. He was in the hospital for several months and remembers very little of it. This accident left him in a great deal of pain. I am a compassionate person. I hate to see other people hurt. But he has these pain "attacks" that cause him to cry out and scare my kids. I would be more inclined to cut him some slack, except that he still drives. I asked him how he can do that if he has these attacks. He told me that he can tell when he is going to have one and pulls over. If that is the case, then leave the room when you feel one coming on. It scares my kids. They don't know what to do when they see someone they love in so much pain. It is confusing and upsetting.

Last year when he visited, we noticed that he only had the attacks when he wasn't the center of attention. Like, you know, when the kids were around. Once the kids were in bed, he was much better, evidently. That is when we started ignoring the attacks. I still do feel bad for him. But one effective parenting tool, thank you Mr. Skinner, is ignoring a behavior in order to extinguish it. It is not entirely effective, but I am at a loss as to what else to do at this point. I am not heartless, so don't get all up in my face about what an unfeeling person I am.

He refuses to eat healthfully. I try so hard to encourage my kids to eat healthy meals and snacks. I try to model that for them. PopPop having three donuts for breakfast is not helping. Now that is what Bear wants. He eats very few vegetables or meat. He asked me to get him some Entenmann's (sp) from the grocery store. I told him I would not, just as I wouldn't buy heroine for an addict.

He is not a kind and loving grandfather. He does love my kids. I know that he does. He really tries sometimes. But he can be so thoughtless in the things he says and does. I won't even begin to describe them, because that is when I get most angry. Mostly though, he just ignores them. Then he is amazed at the things they can do. Things they have been doing for months and have done in front of him several times since he got here. It frustrates me and it frustrates the kids. They have, for the most part, already written him off. They don't want to give him good night kisses (and they want to give everybody goodnight kisses!), they have stopped asking him to play because he never will. It makes me sad. He is giving up such a potentially wonderful part of his life.

PopPop was supposed to be with us until the beginning of October. Since he has been feeling so bad, it has been decided that he will head back home Sunday or Monday. He needs to be where his doctor is. I feel so bad about this. I really wanted for him to be here to at least give my sister-in-law a break. But this cannot go on. This will likely his last visit. SugarDaddy is just torn up. I cannot imagine how he is feeling. My parents sometimes drive me crazy, but not this way. I wish I could do something. But the best I can do right now is avoid PopPop. You know, if you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all.

Thank you all for your kind words and encouragement. I appreciate your support more than you know. I hope you won't see me as mean or heartless. I just have to put my children and marriage first. And this man soaks up all of the energy and joy from our lives. I'll stop now. Thanks again.


Today is Friday, people. It is supposed to be happy. I, however, am NOT happy. Why? You really don't want to know. But, I am going to tell you anyway. Because it's my blog and the only place I can vent right now.

1. When I took Bear to school today, nobody was there. The note on the door said that the school picnic was today at 11:00. I knew that. What I didn't know was that there would be no school because of it. I have stuff to do, folks. Now I have to take two boys instead of one. AND this picnic is screwing with naptime. Naptime is sacred.

2. My mom left the relative safety of the Texas panhandle Wednesday to fly to HOUSTON for work. Now she is stuck there. No more flights out. She is staying with some cousins, but now she will be there during the hurricane. Just what y'all needed. Me venting my angst through another damn hurricane. Please pray for her and my other family down there.

3. PopPop decides - after we are all ready for the stupid picnic - that he feel so poorly that he needs to go to the ER. I may sound like a heartless bitch here, but we have played this game before. My sister-in-law plays it all the time because he lives in the same town as her. When he is feeling neglected, he pulls the "oh, I'm sick" card and ruins whatever plans you have with your family. He has cried wolf so many times that she tells him to call a cab now and she gets there whenever she is done with her kids' activities.

SugarBear is heartbroken that Daddy won't be at the picnic. I hate this. We can't take a chance, because the man is in poor health and doesn't take care of himself. If he really is sick & we blew it off, SD would never forgive himself. So I am stuck here with all of this anger and resentment for this man that I used to love (PopPop, not SugarDaddy. I feel really sorry for my husband.) I will explain more about PopPop later.

I am now late for the picnic. We'd better get going so that we can get back to salvage a little of naptime. Thanks for listening.

Thursday, September 22, 2005

Extra, Extra, read all about it....

I hate school fundraisers. I honestly would rather just write a check to the school or PTO or whatever for $100 and get it over with. I don't need any wrapping paper, t-shirts, cookie dough or magazines. They get the kids all worked up about it. "Sell $xx, and win this piece of crap! Sell $xxx and get more, bigger crap!" or "Everybody who sells something gets to go to a special party..."

Grrrrrr. This afternoon, SugarPlum came home with the dreaded magazine fundraiser packet. She was all excited until I told her that we wouldn't be doing it. We just moved here. Everyone in our neighborhood has kids at the same school or neighbors with kids there. We have the magazines we need. I told her that she could ask PopPop and GrayGray & Gram to buy some, but to not hold her breath. She was devastated. There were tears and angry words. I told her she could definitely sell Girls Scout cookies in the Spring. Yeah, that helped. I'm hearing, "I'll be the only one in my whole class who doesn't get to go to the party or win a prize!"

So she sat down, looked through the catalogue (a magazine catalogue sounds so wrong) and found a couple of magazines that she would be willing to spend her allowance on. This is a big deal. She is quite a miser when it comes to her own money! So we may be subscribing to a few after all. What a little problem solver, eh?!

In the mean time, let me present to you this wonderful opportunity to both receive quality magazines at low, low prices AND help XXXX Elementary School....

Visit the Piggies

Have you ever seen pigs fly? I have, and it's a sight to behold. Today, I am guest posting over at Flying Piggies. Theresa is (hopefully) finishing her novel, and has had guest bloggers all week. I got to be last. Don't get your hopes up. It's the same drivel you get here. Only now with pigs!

Theresa is one awesome lady. After you read the guest post, dig around in her archives. I'm sure you will love her as much as I do.

Yes, I do too have one!

Your Brain's Pattern

Your brain is always looking for the connections in life.
You always amaze your friends by figuring out things first.
You're also good at connecting people - and often play match maker.
You see the world in fluid, flexible terms. Nothing is black or white.

Tuesday, September 20, 2005

A New Bundle of Joy!

Go over to Small Things and welcome Kristy's new baby, Mary. She is just beautiful. We thought you'd never get here Miss Mary!!

Congratulations to all of the Vegas!!

Stupid Questions?

This link will expose the fact that I am a conservative. (As if there was any doubt) If you are not, please don't hold it against me.

Who Says There Are No Stupid Questions?

This column by Mike Adams cracked me up. It really doesn't have too much of a lean, so don't worry. I'm not trying to indoctrinate anyone. And I will promise to try to never be preachy about my political views. If I decide to do that, I will start another blog.

Monday, September 19, 2005

Thoughts and Prayers

Please keep my good blog friend Delane in your thoughts and prayers this week. His mother-in-law passed away this evening. His wife lost her mom. His boys lost their Nana Sue. I can't imagine what they must be going through.

Delane, I am thinking about you and praying for you. Kiss Ben & Jackson for me & give Amy a hug. I am so sorry.

Sunday, September 18, 2005

Too Much Information

Yesterday PopPop told me that he needed to go to the store to buy some pajamas. He had accidentally left his at the hotel in Massachusetts. He had slept in his "dungarees" Friday night.

SugarDaddy offered a pair of his pj bottoms for him to wear. I suggested that they might be too big.

PopPop tells me, "That's okay. When I am at home, I sleep in the nude."

Yeah, now I gotta get that image out of my head.

Thursday, September 15, 2005

Tell me I'm not the only one...

Every night, I swear to myself that I will go to bed early. Or at least before midnight.

Then, I think, I'll just check my email one more time.

Then, Well, Haloscan doesn't always email all of the comments, I'll just check the blog one last time.

Ooo! Look who just updated, I'll just take a look at that.

Hmmm, that's an interesting comment, I'll take a quick look at his/her blog.

Wow, that looks like a cool link...

Look! Michele has a new game up...

Okay, now I'll just check my email one last time....

Lather, rinse, repeat until 2:30 am.

Extra Bonus DC Trip Story

Believe it or not, I actually forgot to tell you this hysterical story from my getaway with the Queen. Even more unbelievable, she reminded me of it, saying that she was surprised that I left it out! I was on the floor after this conversation. You be the judge.

While looking at the gowns on display at the first lady exhibit, we read that one of Abigail Adams's (I think it was her) gowns or coats or something was lined with fleece.

Queen: Fleece? They didn't have fleece back then! Did they?

Me: Um, yeah, the real fleece. You know from sheep. ::snort:: cough, cough...hahahahaha! (trying to maintain my dignity)

Yeah, life is fun when you put two blondes on a trip together. There are more stories to come, I'm sure!

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

What I did this weekend, by Buffi (with pictures! sorta)

I know I promised pictures. There are lots of links to pictures. I couldn't get them to upload from Flickr. Blonde, sorry.

As I said, this weekend may go down as the best ever. I was amazed that everything fell into place so well. I was afraid I would jinx myself because I kept saying how great it was going. The only thing that was not perfect was that, although SugarBug got better by the time I left, SugarBear and SugarDaddy got sick. But that was was in Ohio, and I was in DC, so... (sorry, I did feel bad for them. When I wasn't having fun!)

The Queen sent her husband to pick me up from the airport. Stunningly, my plane landed 20 minutes early. As I got on the escalator down to baggage claim, I looked up & saw him walking by. I shouted to him and thankfully got his attention. He hadn't seen me in two years & then I had very short hair. He wouldn't have recognized me! And, being a man, didn't bring his cell phone into the airport with him. My bag was the third one off. The king seemed surprised that it was so small & that it was the only one. "No shopping?" Hahahahaha! No, I told him that I just knew that anything I didn't have room for could be mailed back!

We got to their house & I got to see the Princess and the Prince, whom I had not seen in over two years. Aren't they beautiful? We had a fun evening and went to bed at a decent time for me, anyway, knowing that we had all weekend to visit. The Princess was a little peeved in the morning because I wasn't awake before she left for school. She left me a very sweet note. I felt appropriately guilty.

We left late Friday morning, stopping first for lunch and a little shopping. SugarDaddy told me to buy a new digital camera when I got there, so we stopped at Circuit City and got this one. Isn't it adorable? I love it! We also had to go to Marshalls to get me a new shirt, because I can't even brush my teeth without dripping something on a white t-shirt. Loser.

We were supposed to meet LBT, my roommate from my senior year of college, at our hotel at 3:00. We found the hotel with almost no problem. Checked in (it was lovely), freshened up and waited for LBT. She had gotten a late start also and arrived about 4:00. After a bit of visiting we took off toward Old Ebbit Grill so that perhaps we could see someone we might know. Alas, no politician or press sightings, but we did have a lovely dinner, some lovely drinks (the bartender even bought our last round!), and some yummy chocolate cake. After Ebbit's, we walked the block down to the Hotel Washington and enjoyed a second dessert (banana split, if you are dying to know) on their lovely terrace and enjoyed the views. We laughed and told stories on each other (and our husbands) and had a grand time. My sides hurt when it was time to leave!

We started back to the hotel and got a little turned around. The Queen and I got a good laugh when LBT said that she knew we were going the right way because Look! There's a Starbucks and there was one on our way out. HA! As if you can throw a rock without hitting a Starbucks in DC! (Love ya!) We finally made it back and LBT had to head back home to take care of her very sweet, old puppy, Pandora. We were sad for her to go, but settled in and finally got to sleep sometime after midnight.

The next morning started with SD text messaging me the play-by-play of SugarPlum's first soccer game of the season. It wasn't pretty, I'm sorta glad I missed it. We ordered breakfast, showered and headed out the door around 10:30. I think we walked around eleventy bajillion miles Saturday. We headed out toward the White House . We saw where the press corps hang out, although nobody was there, of course. Then we took off toward the monuments.

Good golly it was hot! We had to stop for water before we ever got to the WWII Memorial. I wanted to get lots of pictures for PopPop and my grandfather, but didn't remember until we got around to the back. So basically, I got another shot of the Washington Monument. From the Lincoln Memorial, I got this shot, which is one of my favorite pictures. After Lincoln, we went to see the Korean War memorial, which is so very haunting and moving. The statues are very lifelike and the images etched in the wall are like ghosts. We proceeded to the Vietnam Wall and then decided we'd better find some A/C and perhaps some food.

We hoofed it over to the Smithsonian Museum of American History to see the First Ladies exhibit and Julia Child's kitchen. First we had a very overpriced lunch. Whatever. We also saw this flag. It is the flag that was draped over the side of the Pentagon after 9/11. Yeah, cool. Very, very cool. I did find the coveted yellow airplane as well a blue one. To keep the peace, you know. No doll, though. Very disappointing.

Next, to the Museum of Natural History. We were on quite a solitary mission - to see the Hope Diamond. So we walked through the exhibit with all of the rocks looking for the sparkly stuff. People were quite pushy and rude. There was a couple in front of us who had their very well behaved child. And two strollers. Why two strollers? We don't know. The woman was pushing an empty umbrella stroller, taking up lots of room, unnecessarily. Space issues, I suppose. On the upside, I found lots of Christmas ideas to give SugarDaddy this year. That's a post for later in the year.

By now we were hungry and exhausted. We stopped at the gelato/coffee stand for a little of both. Unfortunately, the bitchy lady there had decided to close up early, so we got gelato, no coffee, and a heaping serving of resentment. After perusing the gift shop, we headed out destined for the mall at Pentagon city. With a quick stop at that one DC Starbucks to get that caffeine infusion we needed.

We hit the metro and got to the mall and the first shoe store for a pair of comfy shoes for my aching feet. No, they were NOT cute, but they did the trick. Then we looked at more shoes, make-up, clothes and purses (with thoughts of Busy Mom!). I found a coat that I really, really wanted. It was cashmere and beaver. I never knew how much I needed a beaver collar on my coat. So soft. **sigh** No, I left it for someone who could actually afford it. Then? Hungry and even more tired.

We got back on the metro, intending to eat at the hotel's restaurant. We had to ask the info booth guy which train to take & which stop to get off at. So, one queasy train ride later, we were one stop short of ours. Then we sat there. We finally got off, because who can understand the announcer? He sounded like the grown ups on Peanuts, "Wah wah wah wah, McPherson Square, wah wah wah." Whatever. We decided we could find our way back. You know, because my navigational skills are world famous. Did you know that the people on the street in DC at 10:30 at night are just a liiiiiiitle scarier than the ones out there at 10:30 in the morning? After several wrong turns and trackbacks, we made it to the hotel. We were so very, very grateful to get a table in the bar. We had the most adorable Italian/Argentinian waitress named Gabrielle. I had the absolute most fantastic steak I have ever had. And martinis, and one of my favorite beers! And we had dessert with coffee. Mmmmmm. I am happy just thinking about it. Gaby got a really good tip.

We finally dragged our tired butts (no dessert jokes!) up to the room & chatted in bed until well past midnight. Lots of funny stories. Did you know that the Queen's dad looks like Saddam Hussein? Mine looks like Harrison Ford. I'm not certain that coffee was decaf.

We got up & ready in time for brunch Sunday morning. Champagne brunch. Mimosas. Need I say more? We checked out & chose to drive to the Capitol. No more walking, please. Or so we thought. We took pictures at in front of the Capitol. We walked (in the ungodly heat) over to the Supreme Court. FYI, you can sit in on the hearings for John Roberts appointment. SEE? Somehow we ended up walking allllllll the way over to Union Station to go potty. Then we had to walk allllllllll the way back to the Capitol. Feet=ouch.

We wanted to go to the National Archives and Ford's Theater, but we couldn't find a parking place nearby. So, we said screw it, let's go to the mall. We had to call the King to get us out of the city. Yeah, that famous navigational acumen again. Only, it took us a while to get through, because the Princess was on the phone with SugarPlum for an hour. Paybacks are hell.

**This is where I am trying desperately to wrap up this gargantuan post.**

So, we shopped, yadda yadda yadda. Stopped back at the Palace to say goodbye to the Royal family. Left my tickets at their house & had to turn around. Got to airport...exit row seat! YAY! Got home to find SugarBear laying at the top of the stairs waaaay past bedtime. He told me, "You were gone a very long time, mommy!"

Now, SugarDaddy has gone to meet his Dad on the East coast. I feel sooo much better mentally. This was the recharge I badly needed. I think I may have whatever virus the rest of the family had, but I'll be fine.

If you have stuck it thru this post this long then you deserve a medal. I'll bet you can find one at the Smithsonian.

Forever a Fighter Pilot's Wife

Hahahahahahaha! I just looked at my StatCounter and it was 6969. All of the fighter pilots and teenage boys in the world are laughing right now. That is the perfect number, you know!

**Yes, I am still working on the post about my trip. Should have it up later tonight. Laptop is back in working order after a visit with the Geek Squad at Best Buy. They aren't kidding about the geek part, you know. Very sad.**

***If you want to see the pictures, click on the Flickr thing in the sidebar. They are all there.***

Monday, September 12, 2005

She's baaaaaack!

Yes, I returned home safely last night after an absolutely perfect getaway with The Queen. We had a wonderful time and I feel so energized even though we walked about 87 skillion miles. I promise to tell you all about it later. The kids are all about mommy right now, so it will have to wait until after everyone is in bed. At the moment, I am helping SugarPlum with homework, unpacking my suitcase, and singing Manamana (from The Muppet Show) with SugarBug. Over & over & over.

Did I mention that SugarDaddy left this morning? (Just for The Queen and LBT: Yes, it is as we suspected, although not in a bad way. I don't think.)

So, I do promise to tell all & even try to add pictures tonight. What else have I got to do??

***It is nearly 1:00 am. I was almost finished with my post about the trip. I hit something and it was half gone. Poof. Links, lots of links. And pictures. Tons of pictures. Gone. I may cry. I need to sleep. I also need a new mouse for my laptop. The touch pad died & now my new little mouse has too. I've been at the desktop tonight & it is s-l-o-w. You will hear all about the trip after I sleep & go to Best Buy. Good night.***

Thursday, September 08, 2005

On My Way!

You guys are the best! I really appreciate all of the encouragement and support. I am at the airport right now, sitting in the business center, using their free wi-fi access. SugarDaddy and I were laughing that, yeah, right, the airport will have free internet access. I am downright giddy to be in the airport playing on the internet. My one and only (minor, very minor) gripe is that I can't access gmail, because somehow it shows up as a p*rn site. Odd.

SugarBug was up several times last night, but never with fever. Then he was up at 5:00 this morning, but in a really, really good mood. I have told SD to keep him doped up on motrin & tylenol all weekend and he should be fine. I offered him a chewable motrin this morning by saying, "Hey! Want one of these?!" He enthusiastically took it. No, he didn't have a fever, but once he does have one, you can't get any medicine in him. So we are being proactive and giving prophylactic motrin. No lectures, please.

So here I sit at the airport, relatively guilt free. SugarBear and SugarPlum were a little apprehensive about me leaving, but they'll be fine. Bug fell asleep on the way to the airport, but woke up to give me a kiss & say goodbye. I'll try to post again later. But, WHEEEEE! I'm kid free, so if I don't it's because I am shopping, or getting a pedicure or indulging in adult beverages! If you are lucky I'll post pictures. Someday.

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

**Sigh** ~~UPDATED~~

Well, this time tomorrow I, hopefully, will be with my friend, The Queen, in Maryland, preparing for a fun-filled, kid-free weekend in DC. Hopefully, you ask? Yes, because do you know where I am going in 20 minutes? To the pediatrician with SugarBug.

He woke up this morning with a fever that has not been kept down with ibuprofen. And he won't let me give him any tylenol or anything else. Is it bad of me to hope he has an ear infection, so that they can give him antibiotics and he will feel better tomorrow? He got tubes just over a year ago and we have had only one ear infection since then. He's been snotty and coughing for the past week or so. I really think that's what it is. He is miserable, poor little guy.

I hate to leave him here without his mommy, but I neeeeeeeed to get away & this is my only chance. SD is leaving Monday for his trip with PopPop and then PopPop will be staying with us until the beginning of October. Grrrrrr. I hate stuff like this. I will be miserable either way. I'll update after the doctor's appointment.

Thanks for listening.


No it is not an ear infection. SugarBug's ears looked "great." I tried not to let on to the Dr how disappointed I was. He has a random, nasty virus that is making him spike fevers and be miserable. I was able to get some motrin in him before we left for the dr. By the time we got home he was much better, but about four hours later, started to crash again. I couldn't get him to take anything then. I tried to force some motrin down him at bedtime, but he puked it all up - all over both of us. Gross. I'm still going though. I may regret it and have to fly back Friday morning, but as of now, I am still going to DC.

SugarBug, of course has no idea what is going on with the trip. I mentioned it to Bear at bedtime and he turned into a maniac. "I don't want you to go!" "I want to go with you!" That would defeat the purpose, don't you think? He told me to bring him a "lellow airplane." So I shall find him a yellow airplane if it's the only thing I do!

SugarPlum was a little weepy. "How will you read to me? Can I call you whenever I need to?" (of course) But I talked up Daddy and how much fun he was going to be. She told me that she wanted me to bring her a doll for her collection. She has dolls from all over the world that GrayGray and Daddy have brought her. Now she can have one from Mommy.

I hope that SD will be okay. This will be the first time he's been alone with them for any length of time. When I went to Dallas for a weekend in April, my mom came to help out. When SugarPlum was 2, I went away for a weekend and he threw his back out. Pray for him!

I am taking my laptop and will try to post at least once while I am gone. If I don't get to though, have a great weekend!!

Monday, September 05, 2005

Why I Love This Country

I would like to do a brilliant, insightful post about Hurricane Katrina, the aftermath, what should have been done, what shouldn't have been done, and maybe even who is at fault. I would like to, but there are so many who are so much smarter, well spoken, and more credible that I could ever hope to be. There is more than enough blame to go around. Hindsight is 20/20. What matters now is helping these people left destitute by this storm. And that is the point of my post.

The thing that I love about this country is that after we have gotten over the shock and disbelief following a major tragedy here, we stand up dust off our hands and say, "Now, what can I do?" I love hearing the stories of people across this beautiful country of ours offering their homes, their money, their time, whatever they have to help Katrina's victims. People stand by, all over the country, waiting approval to enter the disaster zones in Mississippi, Louisiana, and Alabama so that they can bring aid and comfort and safety to the area. Small children going through their toyboxes and raiding their penny banks so that children who have lost everything can have something to call their own. There are waiting lists at the Red Cross training facilities for classes on providing aid in a disaster. The students on their break here (where my husband is going to school) are giving up their vacations to help out however they can. Folks all over are giving up vacation to go help.

We pull together. Most of us put aside party and ideology to get to the important work of helping our fellow man. No color, no religion, no ethnicity, no class, no rich, poor, red, blue, dove, hawk, just human beings (and puppy dogs, Marti!) who need our help. Because it doesn't matter if you agree or disagree with how they voted. You love them because they are you. I know that it could have just as easily have been me and my family who lost everything. In fact, our landlord and his family are stationed at Keesler AFB in Biloxi MS. This time last year, those people lived in this house. Their children played in this backyard. Slept in these bedrooms. Now those kids have nothing left. Their house is gone and all of their clothes, toys, sippy cups, and Tonka trucks. Everything that was their world. That reality is almost more than I can bear.

My daughter spent hours this evening putting together "activity packs" with coloring books, crayons, pencils, toys, and lollipops for our church to deliver down south. We shopped for the items together with her little brothers this afternoon. She was so pleased to be able to do something to help. We are all so very, very grateful that our family was okay. As a result we feel an even greater responsibility to do something for the others who were not so fortunate. We also bought diapers, wipes, and formula and will be heading to Sam's tomorrow to get more before our church group heads South. This is our opportunity to show our kids what it really means to be an American. To let them have the experience of doing something tangible for someone else.

So, thank you America. Thank you internet for showing what this country really is. The news may show the looters and the criminals preying on the victims. But, call me Pollyanna, I choose to believe that there are more people - exponentially more - who are looking for a way to help. Who are going out of their way to bring comfort. My faith in God is always rewarded by Him showing me the how the good in people will outshine the bad. I am so proud to be an American.

For a comprehensive list of reputable charities offering aid to victims of Hurricane Katrina, look here. Thanks to Busy Mom.

Saturday, September 03, 2005

Overheard just now...

SugarPlum (while playing with her friend, N): I actually had one (a boyfriend) in Texas, and I actually kissed him when I was in kindergarten.

Now, should I be amused or troubled?

Friday, September 02, 2005

One More Update PLUS How you can help

SD spoke with his family tonight. His father has power and is back at his house. His sister's family has a generator and are okay. He and his dad are going on their trip as planned in a couple of weeks. AND I get to go on my trip with the Queen as planned. ::~does a little happy dance~:: Then f.i.l. will be staying with us for a few weeks. Expect some good blog material to come from that little visit!

We truly feel blessed beyond measure. Considering all of the suffering all over that region, our family is really in need of nothing, other than patience perhaps! With that in mind, she gave us a few ideas as to whom you could send money. The churches in the area have really done a great deal. They were on the scene immediately. She suggested donations to the Gulfport or Biloxi Catholic Diocese, the local United Methodist Churches, and Southern Baptist Churches. I think that you could Google any of these to find a specific church to send a donation. On a more personal note, My nephew's school will have a great deal of rebuilding to do and could use some financial help. Donations can be sent to St. Alphonse School, 504 Jackson Ave, Ocean Springs MS 39564. If you would like to donate in his name, email me sugarmommymail at gmail dot com, and I will give it to you.

Also, consider donating to local charities and food banks where you live. When disasters like this occur, other charities suffer because folks direct their donations out of their local communities. If you don't have money or items you can donate, maybe you have time. Go to a nursing home and spend some time with a resident there who may not have anyone else. Volunteer at a soup kitchen, or a food bank, or the local chapter of the Salvation Army or Red Cross. They send people out to the disaster areas, leaving work to be done at home. There are so many ways you can pitch in. There is no need to feel helpless. Put that humanitarian spirit to good use.

Another Sigh of Relief

I spoke with my sister-in-law a while ago. She called me from her home phone. They still have no power, but when her phone rang late last night, she discovered that it was working! I was so, so happy to hear her voice. They were very blessed to have come through the storm with fairly minor damage. I guess we assumed heavy damage from the reports we saw in TV. Their house has some shingles missing and a small roof leak, but no structural damage and no flooding. Their cars are okay as well. They just don't have any gas to put in them. She was able to go to the grocery store last night and get some canned goods, etc. No milk or perishables, obviously. The WalMart was supposed to open soon as well, so the folks in Ocean Springs are faring much better than most of the rest of the area. Right now, their greatest need is gas. Unfortunately, I'm fairly certain that I can't send that through the mail.

Looks like SugarDaddy may be flying down there to get his dad and bring him up here. I am going to try really hard not to bitch too much about that. I am very thankful that he is alive. I love him very much, but he has become very hard to like. He is grouchy, stubborn, and thoughtless. I won't even go into the major things that concern me about him, but if he is going to be staying here for any great length of time, we will be finding him a furnished apartment to live in! End of that rant. I am going to try to focus on the blessings.

I am watching the news right now, seeing the relief finally coming into New Orleans. The National Guard has arrived and will hopefully restore some order there. These guys have been dealing with the disorder in Iraq, so I'm sure that they won't put up with any crap in New Orleans. They have also been able to deliver some humanitarian aid - water, food and transportation out of the city. People may finally get the help they so desperately need. I have heard so much criticism of the government, but you know, nobody was able to get into the area, and it wasn't safe because of these gangs of looters with guns. All of the devastation is heartbreaking. These refugees wandering around in search of help will be able to find it now, I pray.

Once again, thank you all for your abundance of prayers and well wishes. They have shored us up in the last few days. I am so grateful for that. I love you, internet!

Thursday, September 01, 2005


SugarDaddy just got a very short call from his sister. She said that they are alive and okay. Their houses are heavily damaged. That was all he got before the line went dead. I am so, so very relieved. I can barely type this because it is hard to see through the tears streaming out of my eyes.

I cannot thank you all enough for all of your prayers and encouragement. They kept us going through this. I will let you all know more as I find out. Sounds like they will continue to need prayers. Thank you again for everything. It has meant more than you can ever imagine.