Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Double Entendres at Dinnertime

Setting the scene:

SD is cooking beef stir fry for dinner. He has cooked most of the vegetables and about half of the meat. I have served the boys their food and Bug, being a typical two year old, has found fault with his meal and is throwing a huge fit. Bug has gone upstairs to continue his fit and I have just come downstairs after trying to calm him. I am finally preparing my plate now that the food is nice and cold and SD is finishing cooking the last of the beef.

Him: That may all be cooled off by now.

Me: It's okay. The rice is still hot. It'll be fine.

Him: Well, get some of the vegetables and you can have some of this hot meat.

Me: Did I just hear you offer me some of your hot meat??

Him (raising eyebrows and smirking): Why yes, I believe you did.

Monday, January 30, 2006

A Tale of Two Baggers

I've come to the conclusion that there are two types of baggers at the grocery store. There are the baggers who cram as much as possible into every bag, so that each one weighs about eight hundred pounds. You know the bagger who asks, "Do you want your milk in a bag?" and when you say yes, she puts BOTH gallons of milk in the same bag, then stuffs a few cans of tomato sauce, a roll of paper towels and a bag of oranges in there for good measure. These baggers can usually be counted on to never group things together in the bags logically. So you have frozen food in a bag with canned goods, toilet paper, laundry detergent and (ahem) feminine products.

Or, since I buy the super-economy size package of toilet paper (I hate running out!), they put the box of popsicles in the bag with that. Only, sometimes I don't bring the toilet paper in right away, because I like to get all of the cold stuff put away first. Only I didn't know that there was a box of popsicles in that bag, so there now there is a big old mess in the back of the van.

You have to be Hercules to carry these bags in. And if SugarBug insists on being carried (not as common an occurrence as it once was, but it still happens on occasion), it's darn near impossible to get the groceries in without the help of another adult, who is, of course, at work. [Is that the longest sentence EVER??!!]

And if you DO manage to carry them in, there is always one bag that is so grossly overloaded that it spills its contents all over the garage floor. And for me, it always seems to be the bag carrying the jar of spaghetti sauce or the bottle of wine. And I do love cleaning that up off of the garage floor after it has run under the van!

The other kind of bagger is the one who puts one, maybe two items in each bag. Leaving me with eighty-three skrillion bags in the back of my van. The up side of this is that I can enlist the help of the SugarBabies to carry the groceries in, since no one bag weighs more than four ounces. (Except of course for the milk, which for some reason, the baggers all insist on putting BOTH gallons of milk in the same bag! Why? Why? Why?) The down side is that when I get this bagger, I can't see out the back of my van once it is loaded up, so numerous are the bags.

And the children. Oh, the children LOVE this bagger because one of their very favorite games is the "fling-the-grocery-bags-all-over-the-kitchen-and-drive-mommy-crazy-game." Mommy is not such a big fan of this game.

I just wish we could find a happy medium somewhere. I don't understand why they can't put a reasonable number of similar items in each bag. I actually attempt to make their job easier by grouping my groceries logically on the conveyor belt as I take them out of the cart. I put all of the produce together, the frozen goods together, the refrigerated items, the canned goods, bathroom stuff, cleaning things, etc. It's almost like they make an effort to foil me.

Hmmmmm. It's all beginning to make sense now. They're in cahoots with my children, aren't they?

Sunday, January 29, 2006

Handy Household Hint #73

The crock-pot? Even if you turn it on high, it cooks much more efficiently if you actually plug. it. in!!


Friday, January 27, 2006

A note to my boys...

Dear Bear and Bug,

I am tired of the "Garbage Man" game. Garbage men clean up the garbage they do NOT make the messes.

Please think back to the book. Mr Gilly cleans up Trashy Town. He does not dump all of the trash in the middle of Trashy Town.


Ahem....::straightening hair and wiping spittle from corners of mouth::

Thank you for your kind consideration.

~Your loving Mommy

A little cranky

Throat? Sore. (understatement...on fire is more like it)

Legs? As yet unshaven (but we aren't giving up hope on the date just yet).

I have been tallying up Girl Scout cookie orders to turn in later today. How sad is it that the only calculator I can find is the one on my cell phone? (yes, I need a calculator to count cookie boxes...you gotta problem with that?!)

The boys are running around like little maniacs and I'm seriously considering buying that one of those tranquilizer guns like they use on "Wild Kingdom" (is that show still on?) so that I can get some rest today. I think it may be my only hope of slowing them down. Think Amazon.com has one?

Pardon me, I need another lozenge.

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Stop the ride, I wanna get off

You've heard of the Carnival of Cats?? And the Carnival of Comedy?? And the Carnival of Education?

Well, here in Candyland, we have the carnival of germs. If you will recall, I used to call this Musical Viruses or the Game Nobody Wins. But now we have added bacteria to the stew, so we will just call it the Carnival of Germs. And frankly, I'm ready for this carnival to pack up and leave town already.

Bear (yes, of course, its Bear, the kid can't catch a break) was unusually irritable and whiny Sunday morning before church. He was just not right. My mommy bat-senses were tingling and I listened to him breath. He wasn't wheezing, didn't have strider, but didn't sound right. I took his temperature. 99.5. Technically not a fever, but a little high for 8:00 in the morning, so I suggested that he stay home & he was all over that idea. SD said that he would stay home with Bear so that I could take SugarPlum and Bug to Sunday School. Bear would hear nothing of it. He wanted his mommy. So SD said that he would just drop SugarPlum off and come back home since he had a lot of studying he needed to do. (SD goes to Mass as the Catholic chapel on base on Saturdays. The kids & I go to a Baptist church in the next town over and he usually goes with us. It works for us.) SugarBug, however was distraught, "I go Sunday School! I go Sunday School!" So, I stayed home with Bear and SD took the other two to church.

No more than half an hour after they left, Bear: the boy who hates to nap, told me that he wanted to go take a nap in my bed. I was all for that. So we laid down at 10:00. He didn't get up until 2:00! By then, SD had gotten the kids home, gotten Bug in bed for his nap, fixed SugarPlum's lunch and gotten her to go read in her room. Yes, he's that good!

When Bear woke up, his fever was over 101. He was all droopy and didn't want the curtains open or the light on in the living room, he said "It's makin' me a headache." I hate seeing him like that. He ate a pretty good dinner that night, surprisingly enough. But by 7:15 he was ready to go to bed. Everyone was in bed by 8:00 Sunday night.

Monday morning at about 5:00, Bear comes into our room, "Mommy! My head hurts very bad!" I took his temperature. 102.8. I gave him some motrin and tucked him in bed with us. He had those fever "jitters" for about half an hour and finally fell back to sleep. And then he slept. And slept and slept and slept. I went in and checked on him several times. Bug asked about him, "Where's Bear?" and I had to keep reminding him that Bear was sleeping. A couple of times, I would shake him a little to make him stir. I was that worried.

I had decided that Bear had meningitis. Hey! Fever, headache, light aversion=meningitis! SD asked if I had called the pediatric clinic. But I didn't want to be that crazy woman calling to say that her child has meningitis. I spoke with the Queen, whose daughter actually HAD viral meningitis once while staying at my house. Although, to be fair, we didn't know that the Princess had meningitis until after they had gotten to Tucson several days later. Yeah, that was a fun phone call for the Queen to make!

[And could I just say meningitis a few more times? meningitis meningitis meningitis. There. That's better. *sheesh*]

Anyway, she told me the leg lift thing that the Dr. did to diagnose the m********* (I'm done saying it). I resolved to use this bit of knowledge if and when Bear woke up. I went upstairs to check on Bear again and made him actually open his eyes for me. Which he did, begrudgingly, for a moment and went right back to sleep. At least I knew he wasn't comatose.

So, Bug and I hung out all Monday morning. Finally, it was naptime. I got Bug down for a nap and went and laid down with Bear in my bed. It was about 11:00. At 11:40, Bear rolled over, kissed me on the cheek and said, "Good morning, Mommy!"

Then he noticed it was bright in the room and asked where Bug was. I told him he had slept a long, long time, that Bug was taking a nap and it was lunch time. To which he replied, "Oh, no! I wanted to eat breakfast!

I assured him that he could eat breakfast if he wanted to and we went downstairs and fixed pancakes. Which I burned. Shut. up.

So for the past couple of days, he has been feverish and headachy. I was able to rule out M********, and moved on to Bubonic Ebola (thank you, Mir). What else could it be? After three days of fever, I did schedule an appointment for him at the base pediatric clinic with yet another provider we have never seen. This makes....well I've lost count now, but as I've said before there is NO continuity of care in the military and it makes me crazy.

This morning, of course, Bear had no real fever and he was in a good mood. I honestly considered cancelling his appointment, but I have played that game before and lost. I knew that as soon as I cancelled he would spike a fever of 103. So, we went to the clinic and saw a doctor (or probably nurse practitioner) whose first name, I swear, was "Anemone." She was perfectly fine, though. She listened to him breathe, looked in his ears, nose, mouth. She agreed with me that his throat was red and swollen but that it didn't look like strep. She decided to do a swab, "just in case" more to rule it out than anything.

Do I have to tell you that it was positive? Because, duh, it was. These children have my genes. All you have to do is whisper, "strep" and my body says, "Oh! Strep? Yes, we are good at strep! Watch!!" So, yes, as soon as she mentioned strep test his throat was all geared up.

Now, we are home with penicillin. Which, by the way, ranks right up there as one of the more vile liquid medicines. Any "cherry" flavored medicine is usually gross and generally abhorred around these parts. I should have asked for the pill form, but it never even occurred to me at the time.

Bear took a pretty good nap as did Bug. Neither of the other two kids is showing signs of illness - yet. I'm pretty sure that they are waiting until Friday night. We have a babysitter coming so that SD and I can have a date night. (I was even contemplating shaving my legs!) Those kids always conspire to ruin that for us. Ungrateful brats.

Then again, my throat heard that "s" word at the doctors' office today, too, and it's starting to tingle. So date night may be a pipe dream after all. I have a funny feeling that the only action SD will be seeing in the bedroom this weekend will be bringing me motrin and salt water to gargle!

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

More week of nothing to post.....

You Have a Choleric Temperament

You are a person of great enthusiasm - easily excited by many things.

Unsatisfied by the ordinary, you are reaching for an epic, extraordinary life.

You want the best. The best life. The best love. The best reputation.

You posses a sharp and keen intellect. Your mind is your primary weapon.

Strong willed, nothing can keep you down. Your energy can break down any wall.

You're an instantly passionate person - and this passion gives you an intoxicating power over others.

At your worst, you are a narcissist. Full of yourself and even proud of your faults.

Stubborn and opinionated, you know what you think is right. End of discussion.

A bit of a misanthrope, you often see others as weak, ignorant, and inferior...

...but not you. I don't see you weak, ignorant, or inferior. Nope, not you! You. Rock.

Monday, January 23, 2006

I'm such a weirdo

So, a looooong time ago, Diva P over at Diva Spot tagged me with this Five Weird Things meme. I've been a little preoccupied, but I have finally gotten it done. I am supposed to tell you five weird things about me. I'm not sure if there is anything left. **warning overuse of parentheses ahead**

1. Pretty much as soon as I come home, I take off my (very small) bra. I hate to have one on any longer than necessary.

2. I make up goofy songs all day long for my kids. About everything. To all kinds of tunes. Beethoven to Barney, I have my own words to go with the tunes.

3. I can't watch only part of a television show or movie. I'm an all or nothing kind of girl. Even if it's really bad, I have to see the end. And even if it's a show I really wanted to see, I don't like to come in in the middle, I want to see it from the beginning. I'm the reason God made TiVo.

4. I love black olives. I will eat them straight from the can. In high school my best friend, K, and I would snack on olives during a movie rather than popcorn. (At home, not in the theater. It's hard to fit a can of olives (and a can opener) in your purse with all the beer. (kidding))

5. I can go to sleep anywhere, any time. Until about 9:30 at night. Then, forget it. I'm up till at least midnight. Midnight is going to bed early for me. It's insane.

So there you have it. Sorry it took me so long, Diva. I am also supposed to tag five people, so...Christine needs something to welcome her home; Cori I owe you a tag; Ammie and LOOK! you're so fast, you already have it done. AMAZING!; I also owe Peaches a tag; and....The Goober Queen, because I just can't get enough of your weirdness, girlfriend!

Monday Morning

Sunday, January 22, 2006

Is that a trumpet I hear?

From what I can tell at this moment, it looks like Seattle is going to the Super Bowl.

Isn't that a sign of the Apocalypse??

Saturday, January 21, 2006

Boys are so dumb

Just a quick shopping rant...

A note to the (very nice) little old people at Meijer this week:

It is neither quick nor easy for you to use the self check out if you do not know what you are doing and refuse to learn. If you would like to figure out how to do the self check out system, please do so at a time when there are not many, many people waiting (and waiting and waiting and waiting...) to check out. Perhaps a Tuesday morning around 10ish.

Thanks for your consideration.

Friday, January 20, 2006

I never realized this was an issue

I finally used my new mixer again earlier in the week to make chocolate chip cookies with the kids. As we were enjoying the fruits of our labor, Bug told me:

"I YIKE cookies, Mommy! I not yike snails. Snails are yucky! I not want to eat snails."


Wednesday, January 18, 2006

The Truth Shall Set You Free subtitled: The defecation has officially hit the oscillator **updated!**

I will warn you, dear readers and friends, that this is a post that I never wanted or intended to write. But circumstances have warranted me addressing this situation directly at this time.

You may recall a month ago, my Kaboom post. I posted it the day that SD admitted to me that he had been having an affair for six months. I was shocked, horrified, devastated, angry, furious, (please recall the sander reference from a recent post), you get the idea. With the help of some very good friends, I made it through those first few days. And SD survived intact through those first few days.

I had a hard time hearing all of the facts, but hear them I did, each and every one of them. I heard how he met with her on four separate occasions. About how they talked on the phone for hours and hours. (She was an old friend from his childhood. The fact that he was speaking to her on the phone was not a problem to me. I trusted him.) They exchanged emails and letters containing various fantasies; some about leaving their spouses and running away together. No, none of that was easy to hear. In fact, it was gut wrenching.

I was numb for several days. SD was convinced that I was going to leave him. Many of my friends were appalled that I hadn't left him. But, I love that man. And nearly thirteen years ago, we made a vow to be with each other for better or for worse. Well, here was the worse.

SD apologized over and over. He told me that he realized how much he loves me and how much he has to lose. He went to talk to his priest. He did backslide and emailed Hester (that's my name for "her") and I caught him. That is the one time that I thought I might leave. It is the one time I did yell. And my friends were all very proud of me.

But, still, the main underlying thing was (and is) that I love him. And he loves me. Even if he forgot for a minute. So, right after Christmas, we started marriage counseling with my Pastor. He was not soft on SD. He said SD was a lucky man that I am willing to stay, because I have Biblical basis to leave the marriage. He said that SD must earn my trust back. SD agreed that this was true and that he would do whatever is necessary to earn my trust and love. We have been working so hard. There have been no more secrets. I have the passwords to all of his email accounts and I know where he is at all times. We have a joke about him getting a personal Lo*Jack system. I know about all of his phone calls and he knows about any phone calls that bother me (this means YOU).

He is owning up to his mistakes. He is accepting the consequences as they come: the friends we can't visit on vacation because right now they can't stand the sight of him, the awkward feelings during television shows when a joke is made about infidelity, and all of the other things that happen a million times a day that he never considered when he was in the midst of this affair. He is "owning" this problem, and I am proud of that part, at least. He tries so hard every day to show me how much he loves me. And I am beginning to trust him again. And I never stopped loving him. Honestly, our marriage is in a better place than it has been in many, many years. I am not glad that this happened, but since it did, I am proud of what how we have handled it.

So, why did I need to tell you this? Because, some people don't think that SD has suffered enough, evidently. And in order for him to suffer, I must suffer as well, I guess. Hester's husband, whom I like to call Chester (because we like rhyming things in our house) can't seem to let this go and focus his energy on rebuilding his marriage. He has repeatedly threatened my husband in different ways, so much so that I am ready to call the police if it doesn't stop. He apparently feels the need to take time out from his law practice several times a day to check my humble little mommy blog (I see you on my stat-counter...big brother is watching, Chester!), and he is not pleased that I am so happy with my husband! In fact, just yesterday he sent an email to SD threatening to post excerpts from one of those scandalous letters in my comments section. And that is the straw that has broken the camel's back. So, to you Chester, I say BRING IT ON.

It's out there. I know it. All. You may think that I am some frail, pathetic, blonde dingbat. But I have news for you, Chester. I am strong. I am a military wife. I am a Texan. I am a mommy. There is very little you can do or say to me that I can't handle. I can kick ass and take names. And if I start to falter, I have friends from all over this beautiful country, hell, from all over this WORLD who are ready and standing by to come and back me up. Trust me, you really don't want to go there.

So, Chester, perhaps you need to focus your energy on your own marriage and fixing what is broken there. It's not me you are mad at. I didn't do anything to you. But when you and your batshit crazy sister-in-law start calling MY house and trying to dictate what I do in MY life and what I write in MY blog, that's when you people have gone TOO FAR.

We'll take care of this end of the problem. You take care of things in your house. Leave us alone. Perhaps, in the end, we can all live happily ever after. And if that is the case, maybe none my family will ever have to hear from your family ever, ever again.

I wish you all nothing but happiness. Truly. I am not a nasty, bitter person. But don't piss me off.

And to the rest of you...thank you for reading this and supporting me. I have said it before, but you all are the best. Well...most of you are anyway

Monday, January 16, 2006

Hot & Bothered

So, I'm hosting a Pampered Chef show at my house Thursday evening. If you have been visiting here very long at all, you know that I struggle with housekeeping. I am not good at it at all. So, it was a difficult decision to go ahead and do anything in which I have to invite actual people inside my actual home. My addiction to all things Pampered Chef won out, however. It has been well over a year since my last show and I have been going through withdrawal.

My handsome hunk of a husband says to me earlier, the sexiest thing a man could ever say to me. Are you ready for this??

"What do you need for me to do to help you get ready for your party? What do you want me to clean first?"

Couldn't you just die happy right now??

I'll be back later. I think I need a cigarette.

Happy Birthday Christine!!!

I hope it fits.
The rest of you... go over to Mommy Matters and wish Christine a Happy 31st Birthday. When she gets back from Disney World tonight, she'll be happy to see that we were all thinking of her!!

Sunday, January 15, 2006

Hooray for crazy pills!

I may be jinxing this, but Bear is finally feeling much better. Thanks for all of your well wishes and prayers. I've been drugging him pretty heavily at the past few nights so that he will get some good sleep. Believe it or not, he has. No one is more surprised than me at this, because this sort of plan usually backfires on me. I am going to back off the cough syrup some tonight, though, as to not become dependent on it for his sleep.

One odd thing that has happened is that my four year old son has become a pill-popper. I had been giving him chewable benadryl at bedtime to ease the flow of snot. I can't give him sudafed at night because it keeps him up. Add to that albuterol and decadron and he'd really be ready to par-tay. Anyway, when we got home from the ER the other night after the pokies, I gave him some benadryl (the doctor okayed it). I was out of the chewable kind and Bear hates the liquid (can you blame him?!). But I did have the capsules that SD and SugarPlum and I take. I read the dosage and realized that one capsule was the same as two chewables, which is what Bear takes (yes, he weighs that much!). So, I asked him if he thought he could take a pill and he thought it sounded crazy, but better than the nasty "cherry" flavored crap, so he tried it. He did great, better than some adults I know. And now that's the only way he wants to take it. Bizarre.

So, since the second trip to the ER, the boys have been cooped up in the house. Fun! They have been inventing new and exciting ways to make Mommy scream. What scares them the most, I have found, is when I don't scream, but just sit on the couch and glare.

After they had dumped out every damned toy we ever owned and even somehow made some new toys materialize (I still don't know how they did that) in the family room and spread them all over in big, giant toy and debris mountains, I asked, begged, pleaded, demanded and yelled at them to clean up the mess already. After an hour of looks that said "Que? No hablas English," I gave up. I sat down upon the couch and started playing my handheld solitaire game.

That is how SD found me when he came downstairs. He said, "Hey, guys! Lets get these toys picked up!" And Bear said, "Okay!" and started picking up.

What the hell was that??

I just sat there and played my solitaire game and watched the show. SD looked at me oddly a few times as he and Bear picked up. Bug would have no part of it, other than to sing the Barney "Clean Up" song a few times. That is his big contribution to cleaning up most of the time. Everybody needs a cheerleader. It's a good thing he's so cute, or he'd be dead meat. Anyway, Bear and his daddy got things straightened up and I finally told SD that I was sorry that I was just sitting there watching. That it was either that or I would explode into apoplexy once again and frighten the children and neighbors with my shrieking. Given the choice, I went with option A: retreat into my solitaire game. SD agreed that it was probably the smart way to go. The good thing about upping my crazy pills is that I was able to see that option and make that choice. Before, I would have just screamed.

My husband loves me. Thank heaven. He puts up with my crazies and understands and makes allowances. Of course, I make allowances for his stuff, too. I suppose he is lucky this isn't one of those "Why My Husband is a Putz" blogs, because BOY could I go on. (If you ever meet him, ask him about the threat of the power sander.) But, really, I am a lucky woman to be married to this man. We have had a rough time lately, but we are muddling our way through. He is a blessing to me and my craziness. And I love him more and more every day!

Saturday, January 14, 2006

Like my new shirt? *updated*

just to clarify...I am NOT having a baby, just an ever-widening ass. If I was pregnant, they would have to be finding me a maternity straight jacket.

Friday, January 13, 2006

Who let the Dogs Out? redux

My Thursday night? Take my Tuesday night. Add pokies. And that pretty much sums it up.

Yes, another round of Musical Viruses.

It was well over 50 degrees and sunny here yesterday, so I shooed the boys outside to play for a while. Not that it took much effort on my part. There was mud, of course, so a stern"no playing in the mud puddles" followed by the obligatory "yes ma'am"s that were promptly forgotten, had to take place. But the boys were glad to escape from the house for a while. They didn't do much running, more stalking of the dogs and investigating of bugs and rocks and mud and slime.

While they boys were occupied, I seized the opportunity to sort through our wrapping paper fiasco. With SugarPlum's birthday falling so close to Christmas, all of the wrapping paper and bags always seem to get crammed together in one box. Which means that any other time of year when you need to wrap a gift, you must sort through all of the Christmas crap to find a "Happy Birthday" bag. I finally got that disaster under control (almost) and it only required one trip to Meijers and one trip to Target! Amazing. (Also amazing, I made it out of Target at well under $100. Miracles never cease!)

Both of the boys seemed to be doing so much better yesterday. In fact, we had been coaxing Bear into the idea of going back to school today, since he had been home for the past two and seems to be enjoying it a little too much. We got everybody ready for bed and settled Bear in for his breathing treatment before his bedtime story. He was very tired, as he had not had a nap or much of a rest really. His cough had started to pick up some, but I chalked it up to end of the day stuff and gave him some Benedryl. Of course you know the rest of this story. I made my decision to go to the ER a little earlier last night, though.

The doctor last night kept calling Bear "Love Bug." He finally giggled and said "I'm not Bug! I'm Bear!"

She decided to give Bear an injection of decadron rather than give it orally. Bear was not pleased. When the nurse came in with the shot, he asked Bear, " Do you want me to give you this in your bottom or in your leg?"

Bear replied, "No."

Smart answer if you ask me.

In the end (no pun intended), he got the shot in his leg while sitting in my lap. He was very brave and didn't cry much at all. I promised candy afterward. Normally, the deal in our family is that if you get a shot, you get ice cream, but as there are no 24 hour Baskin Robbins in our parts, the gummy candy in my purse had to suffice. (It was a "gummy donut." Have you ever heard of such a thing?!) We also called Gray Gray and Gram for moral support after the pokie. Thank heaven for cell phones.

Bear was happy to get to sleep in Mommy & Daddy's bed last night. I felt it was the least I could do for a little guy who had to get a big old nasty shot in the middle of the night.

So, now I second my request. I'm sipping my PG Tips right now, but a CDL would really hit the spot!

Thursday, January 12, 2006

Make it stop! Make it stop!!

I ask you....

What kind of sick, sadistic SOB music teacher sends a third grader home with a recorder and tells her to practice??? Some sort of parent-hater, best I can tell.

Calgon, take me away!!!

Because Ben dared me to do it..

I can't resist a dare!

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

The Game that Nobody Wins subtitled: Who let the dogs out?!

Winter up here has meant a great deal of indoor time for us. My kids don't like indoor time. They are outdoor-roll-in-the-mud-make-hay-while-the-sun-shines sort of kiddos. So this indoor stuff has been hard on them. It has meant more puzzles and board (or b-o-r-e-d, depending on when you are asking) games. One other game that has been going around, though, is a little one I like to call "Musical Viruses."

I'm sure you have played this or a variation of it at your house. It starts out with one person - usually someone of school-going age - bringing home an exotic germ. First one child gets sick then the next then you all fall like dominoes. Just when you think you have gotten the last family member on the road to recovery, the virus mutates slightly and strikes again. This time with a vengeance. OR one of the children begs to go back to school and brings home a new and improved germ with which to infect his loved ones.

And so it goes for weeks and months until you are able to send every one of their sick little bodies out into the sunshine for several days. Because it's not a cliche for nothing folks, sunshine is the best disinfectant. That and it gives Mom a chance to fumigate the house with Lysol and Oust!

So, this is the game we have been playing in our house since before Christmas. You'll recall Bear's multiple infections, SugarPlum's pneumonia, Bug's ear infection that finally got diagnosed...

The very day Gray Gray got home from Ohio, he went straight to the doctor because he had been having trouble breathing. He was given steroid shots, chest x-rays and some extra heavy duty asthma medicine. Sure enough, by Sunday night, Bug had a nasty cough and high fever. The doctor called it viral (my suspicion as well) and prescribed rest and lots of fluid. I knew that, but I needed confirmation that it wasn't pneumonia after the SugarPlum diagnosis.

Last night, I had everyone doped up and in bed. I was just getting ready to settle in to watch Boston Legal when I hear barking. "What are the dogs barking at?" I ask SD.

"The dogs are right here," he replies.

"Then when did we get a seal?"

Oh, crap, it was Bear.

Or, more accurately..

Oh, CROUP it was Bear.

"Bark bark bark! Mommy...my can't breave. It horts when my coughs."

So, I steam up the bathroom and Bear and I have some "snuggle and breathe time" while SD gets the nebulizer set up. Because, of course, it is a foregone conclusion at this point that the child will need some albuterol. I try to avoid going straight to the steroids but only once has the steamy bathroom/cool night air combo worked all by itself. After the "breaving treatment," Bear seems much better and I get him tucked back in.

Thank heaven for TiVo. I get back to James Spader and Boston Legal (and Micheal J Fox - he's really not looking great is he? do you think it was just for this part or is he just looking that bad?) About midnight I hear the barking again. I go up to check on him. I prop an extra pillow under his head, check the humidifier, and resolve to listen. It is still two hours until he can have another breathing treatment.

By 1:00, his barking/coughing is nearly out of control and I can tell he is having trouble breathing. He is wheezing and I can hear a strider. Definite constricted airway. I tell Bear that I am taking him to the doctor and poor boy just says "Nooooo! I don't want pokies!" You know we have done this more than once right? But you can also tell that he really can't breathe because he doesn't put up much of a fight.

SD helps me bundle Bear into the car and, once I find my military i.d., we are off. We got right in at the ER. I was pleasantly surprised, I must say. They took us right back. Bear was slightly dismayed when, moments after they got us to a bed, a little boy across the way started crying because he was getting shots. I tried to be reassuring, but I also didn't want to make any promises I couldn't keep.

The nurse looked just like Dora the Explorer & she knew it. The kids in the ER liked it and would call for her, "Hey Dora?!" It was cute. Bear was quietly amused. He sat and did activities in this preschool workbook I brought to keep him occupied. Worked like a charm. He was an angel boy. Nothing like a little respiratory virus to keep 'em in line!

When the doctor came in, Bear was lovely and charming. He opened his mouth, breathed like a yoga instructor, coughed just enough to not make me look stupid (you know what I mean!) and did everything the doctor told him.

The doctor said that his lungs sounded clear, but agreed that his airway was constricted and that I was right to bring him into the ER. I was relived to hear this, because I always second guess myself on ER visits and whether they will do more harm than good. But I try not to mess around when it comes to breathing.

Bear was VERY pleased when the doc declared his intention to give the decadron orally rather than by injection. "No pokies?!"

Nurse Dora brought the dose of medicine in along with a bottle of Sprite. She pored a little of the soda one of those little doser cups (the ones we used to make jello shots in when I partied with hospital people shortly after SD & I got married) and mixed the medicine with the sprite because it tasted so bad she said. Bear was positively giddy. No shot (ha!) AND he got to drink soda? This night was getting better and better!

We finally got home at about 3:00, which was really only about an hour and half after we left. Best timing for an ER trip I have ever had! I gave Bear one more breathing treatment. SD offered to sleep in the guest room so that Bear could sleep with me. So, I got Night Night (his blanket) and Bear (Bear's bear) and set the humidifier up in my room and finally settled in bed at 3:45. Of course, being hopped up on steroids, Bear was feeling chatty, so it was a while before we were actually asleep!

SD got up with Bug and SugarPlum this morning and let me sleep until he had to get ready for work. He only has the one class, so he is coming home to let me nap later. Until then, can somebody run to Starbucks and grab a venti Cinnamon Dolce Latte for me? It's gonna be a looooooong morning!

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

Truck seen on I-75

After we passed this guy, I made SD slow down so that I could take the picture. Two weeks later, I'm still laughing!!!

Monday, January 09, 2006


Oh, come on, you know you're out there. I know you're out there. I see you on my Statcounter (gasp! Big Brother is watching. Or is it Big Sister?). So, step on out of the shadows and say hello! The lovely and talented Sheryl over at Paper Napkin has declared this National De-Lurking Week.

I appreciate all of you who come and read all of my silly mommy-ness every week. I'd love to know who you are. Let me know what you like or what you don't like. But be nice please, SugarPlum has been extra good lately at telling me what she doesn't like and I'm a little trigger happy. You don't have to leave your email if you don't want, but if you do, I promise to send a thank you note. My mom raised me right!


Sunday, January 08, 2006

Sweet Nothings from SugarBear

As Gram and Gray Gray's departure neared, everyone was feeling pretty sad about it. Bear, remembering the "good old days" when we lived in Texas and they visited almost weekly, told me this:

Mommy, we need to move back to Texas because that is where Gram and Gray can get to us "the quickly-est."

Saturday, January 07, 2006

No Joy In Candyland

**I've finally posted Christmas pictures over at Flickr for anyone who is still interested. This one is my favorite.

Well, the birthday-ing is all done. SugarPlum's big day was drawn out into two due to the big kick-off of the annual Girl Scout Cookie Sale for our council. (If you are in need of cookies, let me know, I can hook you up!) The Girl Scouts in our town all got together at the local roller skating rink to taste cookies and get their sales packets. This is SP's first year as a Brownie. I never could get in touch with the troop leader at her last school. We were in a big Campfire town before (not that there's anything wrong with that!)

Anywho, we decided to delay the birthday dinner and presents until Friday so that she could enjoy them more. Also, since Friday was Gray Gray & Gram's last day in town (their plane left at 6:15 this morning), we thought that maybe it would take some of the sadness out of the evening.

I did surprise SugarPlum a new "birthday outfit" to wear to school Thursday, a sparkly sweater and purple cords with rhinestone accents. I also told her that I would send a treat - cookies or cupcakes or something - to school to share with her class to celebrate her day. She said she'd like some thing homemade. Maybe some Break & Bake cookies or something. She said she likes cupcakes, but she knows you can't make those at home. You know, that's crazy, making homemade cupcakes. Right Mir? I'm glad I've set the bar so low.

Bear decided that he and I needed to go to "the birthday cake store" to get SugarPlum a cake. I had originally planned to make her one myself, but Bear was intent on picking one out for her, so I complied. Hey, it saved me some time! I drove him to the little bakery at the corner and we picked a cake called "Sinfully Chocolate" and it was beautiful and delicious!

SugarPlum requested Smothered Chicken for her birthday dinner. Not just smothered chicken, though, but Gram's smothered chicken. For some reason, however, Gram decided to put rice in the smothered chicken this time. Actually, I thought it was delicious. SugarPlum, however, was devastated and burst into tears as soon as it hit her plate. I'm pretty sure that it had little to do with chicken or rice and more with Gram and Gray leaving the next morning.

After supper, we moved on to presents. She got a book of Madagascar Mad Libs, a Cyberchase CD Rom game, a Weather Calendar, a set of lavender wheeled luggage, an Illustory kit and a digital camera. Yes. The girl made out!

By bed time she was boohooing. She snuggled Gram for a long time telling "Red Feather Stories" with Bear, where they pass a red feather between the three of them telling a story and stopping when they pass the feather. This can go on for hours and they love it.

SugarPlum finally went up to her bed at about 10:00 last night and Gram snuggled her until she fell asleep. Everyone has been okay today, if a little sad. I've had a nasty migraine. Gram & Gray Gray made it home safely and even got in early. That was a comfort. We miss them very much. We are looking forward to seeing them in April at B2B's wedding and then in May when they come for the boy's birthdays.

I guess that now Christmas is officially and completely over. Things will return to normal. Whatever that is. Lots of news to come over the next few weeks. Not sure if it will be good, bad or indifferent, but it will be news nonetheless!

Okay fine, here's a meme

Deputy's Wife tagged me with another meme. Geez, woman! You're lucky that I needed an easy post!

Four jobs you've had in your life:

1. Kindergarten Teacher
2. Waitress at El Chico (fajita skillets make burn marks on your neck that look like hickeys. That's my story & I'm sticking to it)
3. Shoe Salesgirl at Lady Footlocker (those green & white striped double-knit polyester"referee" shirts were oh-so attractive and comfortable)
4. Wet Nurse (okay just here, for my kids, but I really think I'm due some compensation!)

Four Movies that you would watch over and over:

1. An Affair to Remember
2. Cheaper by the Dozen (the original)
3. Shawshank Redemption
4. West Side Story

Four TV shows you love to watch:

1. Boston Legal (James Spader is yummy here!)
2. Project Runway (put a bunch of designers in a room together & watch the sparks fly!)
3. Grey's Anatomy (Dr. McDreamy. *sigh*)
4. Super Nanny (Validating my parenting skills every Friday night)

Four places you have been on vacation:

1. Italy
2. Belgium
3. Turkey
4. Jamaica

Four websites you visit daily: (I visit about 857 sites daily, please don't get your feelings hurt!)

1. This Mom Blogs
2. Crouching Mommy, Hidden Laundry
3. Baby Faith
4. Mommy Matters

Four of your favorite foods:

1. Knorr Spinach Dip
2. Chocolate Chip cookies
3. Shrimp Creole
4. Nacho Cheese Doritos

Four places you would rather be right now:

1. Someplace
2. warmer
3. than
4. Ohio!

I'm not tagging anyone tonight. It would require more effort than I have energy!

Thursday, January 05, 2006

Happy Birthday SugarPlum!!

All my life I wanted to be a mommy. I contemplated careers - teacher, psychologist, nurse. But I always, always knew that I wanted to be mommy.

After I got married, we wisely waited a couple of years. But I was aching for a baby. SD was gone for several months in the second year of our marriage and we agreed that after he got back and we moved, we would start "trying." I was terrified that I would be infertile.

Fortunately, I come from fertile stock and I was pregnant within two months. I wanted a girl more than I cared to admit to anyone. When I finally got my twenty week ultrasound, the baby would not cooperate and show us if it was a girl or a boy. I was so frustrated.

Everyone who looked at me told me I was carrying I was "carrying like a boy." A friend called and said that she had a dream that I was having a boy. I had totally convinced myself that the baby was a boy, probably so that I wouldn't be disappointed when it wasn't a girl.

My due date was January 12. By Christmastime I was so over being pregnant. I was ready to have that baby and I was ready to have it NOW. Except that I needed to finish the nursery.

Finally, at 4 a.m. on January 4th I woke up having contractions. I called the hospital and they told me when to go in. SD and I called my parents to tell them that I was in labor and would likely have the baby that weekend. They were on the next plane to North Carolina.

And so I walked. And walked and walked and walked. When the contractions seemed to be about five minutes apart, SD took me to the hospital, which was tiny. The maternity ward had two labor rooms. The nurse checked me and I was dilated to two. How disappointing.

So she gave me a giant jug of water to drink and? I walked. And walked and walked and walked. I walked all the around the tiny hospital four times. then the nurse (who also happened to live in my neighborhood and be in the OWC with me) checked me again. I was now dilated to...two. Damn it.

So, they sent me home. And I cried. I was so disappointed. I got home, our friend brought my parents from the airport. I tried to sleep with little success. Finally, shortly after midnight, I told SD to take me to the hospital, that I wasn't going back. When we got there, I was dilated to three and a half. They had pity on me and let me stay. They called the midwife in and she approved the epidural. She will always be my hero. At about 2:00a.m. I got the epidural and immediately curled into a ball and went to sleep. Two hours later, the nurse came in and told me that my contractions had stopped and that they would have to discontinue my epidural. NOOOOOOOOOOOO!

At that point, the midwife came in to check me and I was at....TEN! YAY!!! Time to push. Of course, by then, it was a shift change, and with all of the nurses being in OWC, I was the morning show. I had SD on one side, my mom on the other and the entire nursing staff sitting in the floor, watching.

After an hour and a half of pushing, the baby arrived. I was ready to meet my little boy. So when the midwife said, "It's a girl!" I asked, "Are you sure?!"

She laughed, "Yeah, I've been doing this for a while now. I almost never get it wrong!"

Oh, she was the most beautiful creature I had ever laid my eyes on. These lovely deep eyes that looked at me as if to say, "So there you are! I wondered what you looked like." I knew right then that she was an old soul. My Angel Girl.

From that moment, I couldn't even imagine my life before her in it. She was everything I had hoped for and dreamed of. She is the smartest, funniest, most spiritual, clever, joyful, loving child that has ever walked the earth.

Nine years ago today, my world changed. And I thank God every single day for that. I am the luckiest Mommy in the world.

I had a beautiful picture of my SugarPlum to put here but stupid Blogger won't upload it. I will try again later for now, look at all of the lovely ones in my Flickr sets!

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Watch Your Back

We are a dog family. I have almost always had dogs. We all like cats, we think that cats are nice animals and we enjoy seeing other people's cats. But SD is allergic to cats, so that precludes our owning a cat ourselves. This fact troubled SugarPlum when she was younger because not only did she want to own a cat, she really wanted to be a cat.

Recently, Bear has decided that he would really like it if we could have a cat. He was very disappointed to find out that we couldn't. I tried to give him many reasons why: we have dogs who wouldn't be nice to a cat, the whole litterbox thing (ew!), and, of course, cats make Daddy sick.

So, a few days ago, Bear and I are snuggling on the couch and he asks me, "Mommy, when Daddy is dead, can we get a cat?"


Monday, January 02, 2006

Health Care, Explained for 2006

I am posting this today for Kris, The Goober Queen, who has been having a hell of a time with her health insurance folks as of late.

Q. What does HMO stand for?

A. This is actually a variation of the phrase, "HEY MOE." Its roots go back to a concept pioneered by Moe of the Three Stooges, who discovered that a patient could be made to forget the pain in his foot if he was poked hard enough in the eye.

Q. I just joined an HMO. How difficult will it be to choose the doctor I want?

A. Just slightly more difficult than choosing your parents. Your insurer will provide you with a book listing all the doctors in the plan. The doctors basically fall into two categories--those who are no longer accepting new patients, and those who will see you but are no longer participating in the plan. But don't worry, the remaining doctor who is still in the plan and accepting new patients has an office just a half-day's drive away and a diploma from a third world country.

Q. Do all diagnostic procedures require pre-certification?

A. No. Only those you need.

Q. Can I get coverage for my preexisting conditions?

A. Certainly, as long as they don't require any treatment


Q What happens if I want to try alternative forms of medicine?

A. You'll need to find alternative forms of payment


Q. My pharmacy plan only covers generic drugs, but I need the name brand. I tried the generic medication, but it gave me a stomach ache. What should I do?

A. Poke yourself in the eye.


Q. What if I'm away from home and I get sick?

A. You really shouldn't do that.


Q. I think I need to see a specialist, but my doctor insists he can handle my problem. Can a general practitioner really perform a heart transplant right in his/her office?

A. Hard to say, but considering that all your risking is the $20 co-payment, there's no harm in giving it a shot.


Q. Will health care be different in the next century?

A. No, but if you call right now, you might get an appointment by then.

Sunday, January 01, 2006

2006 - So far, so good

Happy New Year, y'all!

So far, 2006 has been going well. I have only been called upon to write the year once - on my tithe check at church this morning - but I got it right on the first try! I was very impressed with myself. I'm quite certain that I won't be so lucky the rest of the month. Actually, I do pretty well for most of January. For some reason, it's usually sometime about February that I get lazy and slip back into writing the old year. Fortunately for me, it is much easier to turn a five into a six than it was to turn a four into a five. (think about that for a minute if you need to)

So, did you all have a fabulous New Year's Eve?? We were actually invited to two parties this year. Aren't you jealous? We are sooooooooo popular. Whatever. Anyway, one was a family "pajama party" at a friend's house. That was the one I was more inclined to go to, but SD really didn't know anybody at that party and the people there were all about ten years younger than us. The other party was a sorta surprise 40th birthday party for a guy in SD's class. I say "sorta" surprise because he pretty much knew that his wife was having a birthday party for him and that it was a masquerade party, but he didn't know that all of their family would be there, so that was pretty cool. She sent him to Meijer in his court jester costume (tights & all!) while his family showed up. He was happy to see them.

SD & I were undecided until the last minute as to whether we were going or not. We didn't really have "costumes." Luckily most everybody was of the same mind, so a friend went to a costume shop and bought us masks. Black "Lone Ranger-"type masks for the guys and black & white feathered masks for the ladies. Of course, I had to wear mine over my glasses if I wished to see, so that added to the elegance. I wore a black evening gown and SD wore his tux. No, we totally forgot to take pictures, sorry,

I realized, though, that wearing the evening gown meant that I would have to shave my legs. Ugh. That meant removing the protective layer of fur that I have been growing for the past....you really don't want to know how long. Let's just say on nights when there was nothing on TV, you could braid it. Anyway, now my legs are going to be cold again.

And? The evening gown dips very low in the back. so none of my (very small) bras were wearable with it and I was NOT venturing out for another edition of "Humiliations in the Lingerie Section" just to buy a backless bra. Those things are the instruments of the devil as it is. So...I tried the band aid trick. And, it was perfect. A little itchy, but better than the alternative.

Enough about my chest. How's your chest?

The kiddos stayed here with Gray Gray & Gram, perrenial NYE babysitters. Just before we left for the evening, they had popped popcorn and were picking a movie. The grandparents were excited to see that we had March of the Penguins. I tried to warn them about how boring it was, but they were determined that they wanted to see it.

When we got home later, I was validated by their "Holy cow! You weren't kidding!!" They stopped it about half an hour in and (Holli stop reading now) they put in Finding Nemo . Of course this means that the boys ended up staying up waaaaay past their bedtime. Fortunately, for once, this also meant that they slept in a little later. That never happens.

Today, we actually saw the sun for a few minutes. SD and Gray Gray took the kids to the park for a few minutes. It was only a few minutes though because although the sun was indeed shining, the temperature never got above 46 degrees and it was breezy. Everybody needed hot chocolate upon their return home. I don't need to hear about all of your warm weather, Karin, Angel, Erin, Ben, and anybody else down where the weather is beautiful and warm.

SO! Once again...Happy New Year to each and every one of you. Thank you for reading my little blog. I have had fun so far the past six months. I am looking forward to the next six months!