Tuesday, December 3, 2013

1000 posts

I just looked at the counter on my blog and noticed that I have 999 posts. So this one is 1000. I remember thinking "I should do something special for my 1000th post" and then more than a month went by and I have got nothing. Oops.

So, welcome to what could potentially be the world's most boring 1000th post. But any post is better than none, yes? Especially since I sort of use this blog as my memory keeper.

I am 32+ weeks pregnant. With my first 2 pregnancies I knew exactly how far along I was at all times. Someone would ask me and I could rattle off "22 weeks, 3 days" or whatever in a matter of seconds. Somewhere along the way, though, I decided that was weird and I'd stick to just the weeks when I answered "oh, about 22 weeks," but I always knew. I even corrected my OB a time or two.

This time, I'm aware, but not as aware. And this past weekend when I was turning 32 weeks? I actually thought I was 33. So, oops! I am counting down the days because I am feeling particularly HUGE and uncomfortable these days. I have no desire for her to arrive TOO early, but if time could fly (I'm sure it will, this being the Christmas holidays and all) I sure would appreciate it!

I am assured by my friends and husband that I am NOT looking as corpulent as I feel. (I feel like a Hippopotomus. A Preggo-potomus if you will.) I am told I look like I'm trying to smuggle a basketball under my shirt. I have gained approximately 9 lbs and hit the dreaded number I never wanted to go over. (My skinny friend uses said number as her example of a really large person and I finally told her "could you tone it down or add 50 pounds because I am rapidly approaching that number and you're making me feel really huge.") I knew I probably would, as I was rather overweight when I started this venture, but I am hopeful that I will remain under 20 lbs gained as I have in the past and be able to shed it pretty well in the early days of postpartum.

I can't bend over anymore. There is just too much baby in my belly. I have trouble sitting leaning forward, too. (Last night, you should have seen me trying to eat my dinner. I ended up leaning back in my recliner and using my belly as a shelf to set my plate on because I could only take about 2 bites before I would have to sit back.) I had to slide my driving seat's back back a notch because I was sitting up too straight while driving and there was too much pressure. I don't remember having to adjust quite as much with previous pregnancies. I think I might be carrying lower? I don't know. She also spends a lot of time tapping my bladder, so I feel like I'm always in the bathroom.

The headaches have started up again in the last week or so. They aren't usually migraine strength, but they are persistent and annoying.

I have been ladybug shopping online like a crazy person. I have pinned and tagged and registered for and watched what feels like every cute ladybug outfit and accessory on the internet (and I know I'm missing things.) I put a lot of thought into her going home outfit - odd, since I favored practicality over appearance with both of my previous babies - and finally have it picked and ordered. It isn't completely unpractical, but seriously, I went for cute, but primarily functional with both of the previous babies. I got lucky and had a decent order for my Thirty-One business last month and got a commission check last week which has covered all my baby-clothes costs to date. (and she actually needed a bunch of the smaller sized clothes since half of Fuss's seem to be missing.)

I am also noticing the nesting tendancies come out. I arrived home from dropping Fuss off at school this morning to notice how filthy my front door looked. I then spent 10 minuted cleaning it with furniture polish. Now I want to paint it because it has seen better days. But I know I don't actually have the time or energy for that. I have been very focused on reorganizing, clearing out and straightening up around the house, but this is hampered at this point by not being able to bend anymore! I did FINALLY get the kids' room reorganized this weekend (I am THRILLED!) And I'm hoping to get more work done in the nursery beginning this coming weekend (although, it is already looking better than it was a month ago thanks to the work I've already done.) I have on Daddy Fuss's To Do list this weekend raising the crib mattress so I can start putting that together. I cannot wait to see how beautiful the cute ladybug bedding I scored looks in there! The weekend after Christmas has already been mentally scheduled for more intensive baby-prep - pulling the bassinet out of the garage and wiping it down and setting it up for her pending arrival.

We still have no dishwasher which is bugging me.

I leave you with this adorable picture of two very sweet and cute kids that is the wallpaper on my phone. I just can't resist their cute smiles!

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Confession and self-awareness

I think we all know I am not a good housekeeper. I have been working on it, but it just isn't ingrained in me. I get frustrated by the mess, though. That usually motivates me to action, but during this pregnancy, I haven't had the energy. I had a good dose of energy over the weekend though and got a lot done. I had intended to do a lot more today, but I feel like my day is already falling apart. And I have figured out that my way of coping with stress is to hide and avoid all other stressors, too. Sometimes this includes my kids. Which is awful, I know. But just a few moments ago, I found myself hiding in my room with a book while my son watches Netflix in the other room because I got stressed this morning and overwhelmed.

Avoiding housework isn't helping my situation, since having such a messy house is adding to my stress.

Thursday, October 10, 2013


It wasn't a bad day. A little crazy, sure, hectic, busy, not exactly as planned, but overall it was fine. Until the afternoon where I just started feeling overwhelmed and nothing was working the way I expected. I am hiding in my room folding laundry and avoiding yelling at the kids. I feel gross and fat and frumpy. I feel neglected and needy. I feel awful.
Part of this is that I have been sick and feeling blah all week. I am sure that lack of sleep is contributing, but I need a break. I need a distraction. I need a little pampering and spoiling and girl time. And it isn't coming. There is nothing In the future that leads me to believe I am going to get the break I need.

Thursday, October 3, 2013


It's 5:30PM, so I can honestly say that today is one of those days where I wish I had just stayed in bed. It wasn't disastrous or anything, but it was just... rough. Off. A kerfuffle. Woke up late after multiple, time-consuming wakings by the Little Man during the night. Had an awful dream (to sum it up, it included a grocery bag full of dog poop) at the end of my sleep, so I woke up in a bad mood... and then it all just kept coming apart. We were late. Very late. I stopped off to kill the hour before Bible study (which I wasn't really in the mood for) and finish my homework, but I couldn't find my homework. Which meant I couldn't join in the discussion in small group. While we were at Chik-fil-A, Little Man kept needing to go potty, so my back was killing me from bending over to help him and lifting him up.  My friend wasn't there to gab with (she got a substitute job for the day) and I just... walking up the stairs to childcare was about all I had in me and then I had another 2 hours of sitting and listening... I just...

I lost track of time and was very late to pick up Fuss. I felt awful. All her friends and teachers had already gone, so she was sitting with the small group of leftover older kids and a couple of teachers who remained. She was hot (it was over 90 degrees out, though thankfully she was in the shade and there was a breeze) and I had to run an errand after I picked her up. And on my errand I noticed that I have a knocking sound in my engine and my slow oil leak seems to be increasing to not-so-slow. (My husband also has some car troubles so we're just wracking up the expenses here, folks.) Driving around in the car, I felt the overwhelming need to just cry. Despite the fact that my wonderful husband had tried to cheer me up by informing me he should be home at a decent time and he would make dinner - one of my favorite meals.

The baby has been kicking up a storm all day. This isn't such a bad thing, but it can be exhausting.

I'm just in an awful mood and I can't seem to snap out of it.

Friday, September 27, 2013

Baby, baby, baby

This has been a rough week. Monday, I threw up two times before getting out the door to drop off Fuss at 8am.  I spend most of Tuesday contracting - just not enough to call the doctor. (they say call if you get 7 or more in an hour. I was more like 4-5/hour, but they weren't in any sort of pattern) Some were bad, painful and caused me to stop and need to focus on my breathing. Those ones often caused horrible back pain as well. Most were not that bad, just annoying. I put my feet up and drank lots of water (something I'd been slacking on lately) which would make them stop, but then getting up and moving around a lot again would bring them back. Wednesday brought on much fewer contractions, but lots more round ligament and back pain. I will be glad when this week is over!

I've often said I don't do pregnancy well, but I like the end result (a brand-new, squishy, sweet baby) but I feel every ache, pain, and change in my body as I go through pregnancy. It is all worth it in the end (and I tend to get that wonderful thing called pregnancy amnesia and forget all the hard parts!) but somehow it seems like I'm already (23 weeks tomorrow!) ready for it to be over. :) (do not get me wrong, I don't want her to come this early. Neither she nor I are actually ready for her to come, but part of me wishes I could just fast forward through the next few months, get everything done and ready and not have to focus on the creeping by of the days!)

I managed to score some amazingly beautiful baby bedding at a consignment sale and I'm so excited to start work on the nursery now that I've cleared out some stuff (boy baby clothes) I've been saving. I need to do a lot more clearing, but I am very excited and motivated to do that and get moving in the right direction to set up the space for this baby - and have it done early for once. (both previous pregnancies, I had no way to get their spaces done very far in advance because I was waiting on other people to do big things like painting and building our 3rd bedroom)

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Pregnancy Update

Blah. In the past week, the daily, repeated nausea and gagging have lessened immensely, but I've randomly thrown up twice. Both times with uncomfortable stomachs immediately prior (so I have a little warning) but with no apparent REASON behind it (not actually sick, didn't really eat anything funny, motion sickness, etc.). I've had a few random gagging episodes, but they are much fewer and farther between now, so really, I'm not complaining too much. Anything to get through this morning sickness. I know that some have it much worse - I had a friend who had to be hospitalized for dehydration during her 2nd pregnancy due to the extremeness of her morning sickness - but this has certainly been the worse of the 3 for me and I really don't like it.

In more happy news, I've been feeling her kick a LOT more lately (she does NOT like to be squished, for example), but it's not quite strong enough yet to feel outside my stomach, so no one else has yet had the pleasure. (Fuss is dying to feel the baby kick.) The occasional contraction have also begun to be more apparent, but nothing I can't handle and when they get real intense, I know I've done too much for the day and I sit down and put my feet up and drink a glass of water and all is well.

I've also been a lot more gassy than I remember in the past. Actually, funny story, the other night my stomach was feeling so tight and painful and it felt like really strong contractions. Not like 8cm dilated, but certainly a lot stronger than I felt I should be feeling at 21 weeks along. It was the middle of the night and I had just put Little Man back to bed AGAIN and I was really hurting. I was worried. Running though my head "should I wake up my husband? Do I call the Dr's service? They're just going to tell me to go get checked out at the hospital. Which mom should we call to watch the kids while we go?" And then, I discovered it was gas. A LOT of gas, but just gas. Oops. Good thing I didn't go to all the trouble of waking anybody up!

Saturday, September 14, 2013


I don't like my pregnant body. Of course, I don't really like my not pregnant body. Seeing how overweight I am, this is probably not a shocker. But I do like the excuse of pregnancy not to HATE my large tummy, so I'm hoping for some good to come out of this. I haven't eaten as well this pregnancy (who am I kidding? I feel like there are days when I haven't eaten at all) as I have in the past, but I didn't start gaining pounds until the midpoint, though I was certainly gaining girth in that time. I am hoping that the breast feeding metabolism and all that will help me on the way to losing some, if not all, of my excess weight post-pregnancy.

Anyhow, I see all these cute pregnant women taking these maternity photos and I can't imagine doing that. I feel gross and frumpy ALL the time. My clothes feel rumpled, my face feels old, my hair feels blah. ALL THE TIME. I don't want to remember this part. I don't even really want to look in the mirror.

The heat is getting to me. On the rare occasions that I start the day with decent looking hair and make up, I feel like 15 minutes out my front door and my hair has frizzed and my make up has melted off and what was the point again? I actually skipped shaving my legs for about 2 weeks just because I couldn't be bothered. My whole life is in chaos and sometimes I wonder what the point is of trying?

I've read some inspirational stuff about organizing and cleaning lately and I'm mentally motivated to get my house in order (the beginning of nesting I assume - or maybe just fed up with the chaos?) but I have NO energy, my back hurts SO much that I can hardly walk half the time, let alone bend over and pick up the million things all over the floor in the house. My body is betraying me and I'm only halfway done with this pregnancy.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013


Last night I got word that a girl from our school (where my husband and I grew up, met, graduated from, where Fuss goes to Kindergarten) was in a serious injury involving a Jet Ski hitting the raft she was on in the lake near here. Her mom was my high school English teacher and one of my mentors (she was the Journalism sponsor and I was newspaper editor my Sr year). Her mom actually took maternity leave with her during my final semester at school.

I've been fervently praying for her life-threatening injuries all night/morning. I just heard that she passed away this morning.

I barely know the girl, but no 15-year-old child should have to die. I knew her mother, once-upon-a-time and still see her regularly, though only to wave in passing as I'm driving through campus after dropping off or picking up Fuss.

I am devastated. I cannot seem to stop crying. If this is due to my hormones/lack of sleep/being sick (I seem to have come down with yet another cold) I don't know, though of course it is terribly sad. Maybe just being a mother makes me more linked to the grief that has got to be wracking this family right now. I cannot imagine losing my child. I can't imagine how they must be feeling to have a fun Labor Day activity end so tragically. It makes me want to rush to the school and pick up Fuss early just so I can hug her.

Little Man keeps asking why I'm crying and there is no way to explain it to a 3-year-old. (he turned 3 yesterday - I can hardly believe it). It makes me so sad to think that any of my children could possibly ever be hurt. Makes me want to live in and keep them in a bubble.

Very few details have been made known to the public other than that her father was pulling she and a friend in a raft (I saw a picture, it was a good-sized inner tube-style raft) from a boat and a man on a Jet Ski ran into them. I cannot even imagine how that was possible unless the Jet Ski driver was grossly negligent. All the news says is "Deputies to not believe alcohol was a factor at this time." Makes me want to do something crazy like petition to ban Jet Skis.

I just can't my mind around this.

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Top TV

April recently did a post (from the Bring Back the Words link up) about her Top 10 favorite TV shows. It inspired me.

  1. Gilmore Girls: This will probably be my all-time favorite show for years to come. I have a lot of really great memories from this show - some of which include my mom and I having out Mother/Daughter Date Night watching it, and including my "sister" for a year or so until she moved to Sweden. We even continued our Date Nights into my first year of marriage while my husband either stayed home and had some alone time or hung out with my stepdad. We had pizza and margaritas and tried to never miss. (and the one time we had to was the episode where Rory and Lorelai kept missing each other and playing phone tag the whole time and it was so sad and both mom and I cried when we watched it later.)
  2. Veronica Mars: Who doesn't love a story about a spunky high-school/college girl who is a kick ass Private Investigator in her spare time? Love me some Logan. Love me some Piz. I've recently gotten one of my best friends addicted to this show (despite the fact that it's been over for years) and we (my husband, M, and I are all awaiting with baited breath for the release of the Kickstarter-funded reunion movie to come out at the beginning of 2014. I'm really hoping it comes out before the baby arrives, but if she's still tiny, don't think I won't drag her to the theater with me and nurse her through any noises she may need to make.) Also please note that the first episode I ever saw was the season 3 episode that starred Gilmore Girls Matt Czuchry. Don't think that was a coincidence.
  3. Buffy the Vampire Slayer: See previous comment about the spunky high school/college girl who is a kick ass PI and substitute Vampire Slayer for PI. I wasn't allowed to watch the show when I was still in high school, because my mom was kind of over-protective and felt that vampire stuff was inappropriate for a "child." I have since seen every episode multiple times, own about half of them, can quote many, many lines from all 7 years and can sing every note of the songs from the musical. (I also own the CD of the soundtrack and think Joss Whedon is brilliant.)
  4. House, MD: My husband and I found this show quite by accident in the early days of our marriage. It was running once per week (Fridays at 10pm, I think?) on the USA station we frequently watched after work. We watched one episode (3 Stories. One of the best episodes ever anyhow.)  and were hooked. We discovered that Season 2 was starting in prime time that fall and became avid watchers for the life of the series. We felt it went downhill in a few places and agreed that it was time to move on by the time the series ended, but stayed with it up until the end, regardless.
  5. NCIS: Again, something we picked up from syndication on the USA network. I actually became interested because I saw that Sasha Alexander (a recurring actress from an early season of Dawson's Creek) was on it, but ironically, the first episode I ever saw was Kill Ari: Part 2, where the team is trying to avenge her (Kate's) death. She was in the episode as sort of a memory/vision to the members of the team, but it was her final appearance. We've watched all the first-run episodes, too, though there was a season we seemed to have missed a lot of (not sure why.)
  6. Sherlock: To say that I (and my husband) are fans of this show is an understatement. We have added the term "Cumberbatched" to our everyday vocabulary. We've watched through the series (that they have on Netflix - oh, Netflix, how we love thee!) several times now. I am psyched for the next season and wish those British folks would HURRY UP! They left me hanging and it's driving me bonkers.
  7. Burn Notice: To be honest, I didn't want to watch this show when it started. My experiences with Jeffrey Donovan up to that point were not likeable characters. But we both LOVE this show. (We're considering naming an eventual dog we may get in several more years either Westen or Fiona) A little sad that it's ending this season, but since it's gotten pretty far from the original concept now, it may be time. It's had a great run.
  8. White Collar: This show (another USA network original) reminds me a lot of Burn Notice only with less BOOM! and more classy cons. We love us some Neal Caffrey. And Tiffani Theissen (aka Kelly Kapowski from Saved By The Bell) all grown up? Love her.
  9. Suits: Yes, yet another USA original. We love their programming. My husband liked this one from the start, but I was little more hesitant. The two main male characters are so flawed and Harvey really isn't all that likeable, considering he's kind of a conceited ass. But it's really grown on me and I want to be Donna ("it's a name AND a title") when I grow up. It doesn't hurt that she's a redhead.
  10. Beverly Hills, 90210 (the original and the only one worth watching): Again, I wasn't allowed to really watch this when I was a teen, but my best friend was, so I'd go to her house on the weekends where she had taped it (yes, taped.) and we'd watch it often enough that I mostly knew what was going on. They also had book versions of some of the early years/plotlines and somehow, my mom either didn't mind or didn't notice when I'd read those. Years later, they ran in syndication on FX in the mornings (as did Buffy once 90210 had played out) and I was able to see the entire series. My college best friend named her son Dylan because we are the 90210 generation. I watched the first season of the re-make version for nostalgia when they had Kelly, Brenda and Donna in a few episodes, but it's not the same thing.
  11. Downton Abbey: I am not a huge fan of this type of thing usually, but so many of my friends with excellent taste wouldn't stop talking about this show on the internet, so we tried it out when season 1 came to Netflix. We're hooked. We were able to borrow the DVDs of Seasons 2 and 3 from a friend and have been going through them over the last few days.
  12. Switched At Birth: My husband and I took a couple semesters of American Sign Language in college. We loved learning the language and also about the deaf culture. This show has a TON of ASL (including one episode where they didn't speak at all, and did it all in ASL until the very last line of the show) and is often dealing with issues surrounding deaf culture. In addition, it has Lea Thompson and "April" (Vanessa Marano from Gilmore Girls) as two of the stars. I can even get my husband to watch this show and he is usually bored with teen dramas.
  13. M.A.S.H.: An oldie, but a goodie. I grew up watching the re-runs of this show with my dad. I loved it, even as a kid. And when my kids first started talking about Hawkeye (from The Avengers) I was really confused because I thought they were talking about Alan Alda's character. I still can't watch the series finale without crying.
  14. The Big Bang Theory: My SIL and BIL got us hooked on this show that I never would have watched otherwise. I love Geek humor, but to me, modern sitcoms are crap. Mostly they are crass or inappropriate for slightly more conservative (like me) audiences, so I don't bother. But while this has it's inappropriate moments, mostly they keep it pretty clean (and I can handle some crassness) and I just love Leonard and Penny.
  15. Lie To Me: Another cancelled show, short-lived, but excellent. I have no idea how we found it, but it was right up our alley. We use some of the lessons we learned in reading people and it's fun to guess if they are telling the truth or not. 
  16. Dawson's Creek: Maybe I'm the tiniest bit embarrassed to admit how much I loved this show. And, admittedly, the early seasons could have been better, but there was magic to that cast and as they grew together and grew up... I recently re-watched the whole thing (Netflix, you beautiful thing!) and it was still moving and meaningful and I like to declare that their series finale was one of the top 10 best series finales EVER. And who doesn't love Katie Holmes and Joshua Jackson?
Honorable mentions:
Friends: Who doesn't love Friends? It's one of those shows that you can just watch anytime you happen to come across it. I actually came across a rerun I'd never seen before the other day and it was great!
Flashpoint: This was recommended to us by my friend M and we watched it on Netflix, having not really synced up with it's prime-time schedule yet. We love it, and we love that Enrico Colantoni "plays a SWAT Team leader as Keith Mars playing a SWAT Team leader." 
Bar Rescue: Did you notice a distinct lack of "Reality TV" in my list? Yeah, there's a reason for that. We both can't stand most "reality" TV. But we've recently gotten into this and watch it frequently. We feel like we've learned a lot about business and bars in general - and it always makes me want to visit these made-over bars and eat bar food and try new cocktails (a problem since I'm currently not drinking!)

Friday, August 16, 2013

Dramatic little girls

My routine OB visit turned scary (but I promise, all is well now) this week. And solidified even further my preference for the women in the office I go to.

You see, my OB's office has 2 male MDs, 2 female Certified Nurse Midwives and one Nurse Practioner who does GYN stuff, but doesn't deliver babies so she doesn't get much of the prenatal care either. (I go to her for all my non-pregnant stuff. I adore her.) One of the doctors I refer to as Speedy Gonzalez. He's very nice, pleasant, and whatnot, but he always seems to be in a hurry, talks fast, etc. Doesn't hurt that he's short, too. He's a good guy, and probably a great doctor (others who have had him in the delivery room have said he's great), but I just feel like he's always rushed. The other doctor has always been calm and soothing. He has a very calm, peaceful demeanor, etc. He actually delivered my firstborn (he was on call that day) and everything was fine. (though now that I think about it, when I had a tiny scar issue post-partum, I felt like he all but rolled his eyes at me because the tiny area that was bothering me (and caused me to have horrible pain during sex) was apparently so miniscule that he thought I shouldn't be bothered at all by it. But he did fix it and things got much better, so apparently, I wasn't hallucinating.)

Anyway, he apparently has a hard time getting the dopplar to work well when the baby is still small. And he got awfully tense when he couldn't seem to make it work at all and rushed me into an ultrasound with whispers to the ultrasound tech that he thought something was very wrong.

I'd already been having dreams over the last few weeks that I lost the baby, so this certainly didn't alleviate my concerns and for about 15 minutes, I was quite worried and I'm sure this didn't do my blood pressure any favors.

But all was well - we saw her dancing around, saw her little heart flickering away and were able to turn up the volume and hear her delightful heartbeat.

Of course, this meant that I didn't have the chance to ask any of the questions I had planned to ask about these awful, daily, debilitating headaches. Or why I have no appetite. But you know, whatever.

Starting the drama even before she is born.

Monday, August 5, 2013

More preggo ramblings

I think even my mommy friends might be getting sick of my pregnancy woes. To be honest, I think I'm sick of them myself. This pregnancy has been difficult for me - not because it's full of dangerous complications or anything (I have had none of the drama or concerns of many of the stories I have heard) but because it just seems to have worn me out.

I remember when I was pregnant with Fuss, the exhaustion of the first trimester just knocked me down. I was working a traditional full-time office job at the time and couldn't really rest during the day so I'd come home, sit down on the couch and fall asleep. Every. Single. Day. And I remember waiting for the 2nd trimester "energy" to come - and it didn't. Okay, so I didn't fall asleep at 6:15 every evening. But energy? Not so much.

I seem to have the same issue now. Where's the energy, folks? I'm wiped out each day. And the pains in my body (I messed up my sacrum last week and limped around for 2-3 days before going to the chiropractor and getting some amazing relief.), the daily headaches of late, and the still-present nausea and sensitive gag reflex are really just wearing me out! My husband has had to do the dishes because I absolutely cannot handle the smell of old food right now. Makes me gag and retch and vomit over and over. (he loaded a particularly smelly set into the dishwasher this morning and I made the mistake of opening the door to put one more item inside. I was leaning over the sink for several minutes on the one whiff I caught.)

I don't do pregnancy well. I seem to forget that in between each one, having some sort of pregnancy euphoria and only remembering the good parts (wearing comfy, stretchy maternity clothes, the feel of the baby moving within me, picking out and preparing tiny baby clothes, soft blankets, the feel of newness to everything...) and then all this misery is magically wiped from my memory until I'm going through it again.

I'm determined to have most, if not all, of my prep work done for this baby ahead of time. I've always wanted to get most of it done weeks ahead, but something (or someone) has prevented me the previous times. (Depending on someone else to pain the nursery when I was pregnant with Fuss and the room construction going on when I was pregnant with Little Man.) Since we still have many of the clothes Fuss wore and lots of the supplies, it shouldn't be too difficult to do my prep work ahead of time. And since we officially moved Little Man into Fuss's room (now The Kids Room) over the weekend, now all I have to do is clear out the nursery (half of which has been used as some sort of chaotic storage of late) and start moving baby things into it. I'm a little nervous about the potential threat of bedrest that my midwife warned me about because of my high blood pressure this time. And I don't want to be dependent during the holidays (as Christmas is exactly one month prior to my due date) on asking other people to do this for me.

But at the same time, I feel like I'm further along than I am. I feel like... knowing she's a girl so early, having a lot of stuff available already, etc. and I'm not even to the halfway point... it's throwing me off!

And now I feel like I'm not on the same page as anyone else when it comes to her name. I found out last week that the nickname I was planning to nearly-exclusively use for her is not the favorite nickname of my husband. My in-laws are, at best, lukewarm on the name. I'm seriously considering changing the middle name (as I explained to my husband that if we hadn't already announced the other one to the family, I would have already changed it. But I don't want them to think "she changed her mind on the middle name, maybe we can get her to change her mind on the first name, too!" and then start campaigning for their choices.) I got all emotional when I was talking to my husband about this and he really thinks it's a non-issue. But I'm frustrated by the whole thing and getting so upset about it and I can't tell if I'm just hormonally-driven and being irrational or if he's just shrugging it off and not caring because he doesn't want to fight about it and is sick of being in the middle between his family and me.

And that's pretty much my story. I feel like I'm always questioning if my actions are normal and rational right now or if I'm in an irrational hormonal-driven mess. It's not a fun way to go through life.

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Name and Dog - not naming the dog

I'm still dealing with naming drama from the in-laws over here. And I still haven't told my dad the baby's name. I'm ready to just say "SHUT UP! This is her name. Take it, like it, embrace it, or DON'T TALK TO or ABOUT her!" One of the other SILs made a joking comment the other day and I got really sensitive about it. My logical side knows she probably was just joking. But people thinking that they have any say in what we name our child is really pissing me off.

Right now, I'm still waffling on the middle name. The original one we picked (and announced) was simple, short, sweet and pretty much accomplished our initial plan without any frills. The alternative I'm considering is longer, frillier, fancier. It's almost like choosing a tomboy vs. a girly-girl name. They accomplish the same thing (putting all the initials together to represent each of my SILs and our grandmothers who also have the same initials) but it's the debate of the more frilly or the simple. And since the first name can go either way really (I've seen both girly-girls with this name and also tomboy/athletes) I'm trying to figure out how I want it portrayed.

In other news, I have finally had it with my dog. He's not a bad fellow, but he tends to pee in inopportune places (or poo in more extreme cases) when I'm not giving him enough or immediate attention (like at 3am when we're sleeping or when we're not home.) And we have had a bug problem since before we moved here, but it's gotten worse with our rather large backyard that seems to be a bug-haven. I have no energy to put into spending time with this dog, so he gets ignored a lot (unless Little Man is following him around the house to "pet" him.) and he really deserves a better life. I have tried to find him a home. He's good with kids, in that he doesn't bite or react to them when they mess with him, but he's older (13) and isn't really a playful sort, so he's not the type that a kid can play games with or whatever. He'd be a great companion to an older person who likes to occasionally take leisurely walks, but mostly likes to sit on the couch and knit/read/watch TV and might want to give a nice dog some behind-the-ears scratches while he or she does that.

Since I've had no luck with finding him a home via my friends, family, or acquaintances, I'm ready to take him to a shelter. It's a decision I've struggled with - he's old enough that it might not be easy for even THEM to find him a home and then... well, I try not to think about what might happen if they cannot place him. But I finally came to this decision and now my husband is dragging his feet.

And my husband is awesome, don't get me wrong. But I'm the one who has to deal with the dog every day. I'm the one who threw up on the front stoop the other day while cleaning up a particularly gross temper-tantrum display. And then there was the 2 days we had to close the door to the nursery (really only used at this point for diaper changes - I had to remove the diapers and wipes, etc. to change Little Man in the Living Room) before my husband could get to cleaning up the most recent tantrum the dog threw. (All over the freaking floor in there. I couldn't do it. So gross. Human bodily fluids are bad enough.) (Even now, thinking about it, I'm gagging at the computer.)

I cannot do this anymore. I can't have 2 active children, a baby in utero who seems determined to wear me out even BEFORE she arrives AND a dog who is too impatient at times to wait a little longer to go outside. (Oh, and he's a wuss, so if it's raining or wet grass in the back yard, he has made it habit to attempt to do his business in my laundry room. Also a major problem contributing - though not solely responsible for - to my falling behind on the laundry.)

Thursday, July 25, 2013


When I was a little girl, I loved reading my mom's old Bobbsey Twin Mystery books. For those unfamiliar, the Bobbsey family had 2 sets of boy/girl twins - Nan and Bert (the older two) and Freddie and Flossie (the younger two). They solved mysteries a lot.

Somehow, I got it into my head that when I got older I wanted sets of twins for my own offspring. Only I wanted THREE sets of twins - preferrably boy/girl twins - for my own family. That's right, 6 kids. Yeah.

But it was really more about the naming of said children. The names of sets 2 and 3 changed periodically and I can no longer remember what any of those choices were. But the oldest two remained the same throughout my crazy fantasy-dreams. They were the names of my parents, R and A.

I think this might have been about the time (no, the ages don't match up...) I promised my mom that my first girl would be named after her. Maybe I'd already made that promise.

Anyhow, years (and years) later, I'm incredibly grateful that I never had twins (yes, in some ways, it would have been cool, but I remember when Fuss was born being suddenly incredibly grateful that God had not given me TWO of her. I would have had a nervous breakdown. I can still vividly remember the first moments I had her all to myself (we were home from the hospital and my husband had just gone to lay down) and the dog jumped on me and nearly knocked me down with her in my arms and I started wailing "I can't do this! I'm no good at this! They're going to take her away from me!" (no idea who "they" were) - I'm sure if there had been two I would have succumbed to that a LOT earlier. And more repeatedly.

But here's the ironic thing - when we were planning the name for our 3rd child? The girl name was my mom's (with a cute nickname) and the boy name had my dad's name in it (the only thing we knew for sure was that my dad's name was going to be in it - it alternated between being the first or middle name and we couldn't seem to decide on whatever the other name was going to be... good thing we found out she's a girl!)

We announced our girl's name to the family the other night. We were so excited! We thought they'd LOVE it. (I still haven't figured out how to tell my dad his 3rd grandchild is going to have his ex-wife's name. Oops.) And other than my mom, we didn't get the reactions we were expecting. Some luke-warm to actually negative responses. (at one point when we were explaining how we came up with our choices, my one SIL started guessing and guessed the name Janelle. The next day, my MIL told my husband, "you know, I like Janelle better." That's nice. We didn't.)  I actually feel like reminding them "did it sound like we were just CONSIDERING this name or when we said 'our baby's name is: ___________________.'? Did you think we were asking for your opinion?"

Now, I have had one minor re-think on her middle name. Something one of them said to my husband was an alternative (actually, I take that back, it inspired an alternative. She actually suggested that we use a different middle name and then just flip them - so my mom's name was the middle name instead of the first name.) I hadn't yet considered and I actually like it. So now I keep going back and forth. Part of me is being stubborn. "No, we put a lot of thought and consideration into this. THIS is the name." and part of me is thinking "well, this might be better. It's a little more "fun" and different without being crazy."

My husband has left the choice up to me. His "first boy of the family" choice was set in stone even before we got married, so he figures that it's only fair that I get to make the final choice in all the rest. Especially since I'm SUCH a name-addict. I'm still struggling with the middle name.

Either way, I'm already thinking of ladybugs for some reason - sort of obsessively. And I've kind of started thinking of her as my little Ladybug. So she already has a cutesy nickname.

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Writing and tiny people

Writing. I'm trying to get back into the habit. I'd really like to finish my novel. I've been reading some amazing books (reruns - this is the 3rd time in my life that I've read this particular series) - and I am so moved by the story. Now, none of my personal ideas come close to the type of story that this is (WWII historical fiction) but even the characters and the way the author develops them make me feel like we are old friends and THAT is what I want in my own stories. I've always been very character-focused in my own writing and my deepest desire is to have someone read my writing and feel like they know the character.

In other areas of my life, I'm so excited to find out the gender of the baby I am carrying. We should find out next week some time, as the results from the DNA blood test should arrive some time between next Tuesday and next Friday. (I'm hoping.) We'll also get to "see" our baby on an ultrasound next Wednesday.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013


My day did not go as planned today, but at least I wasn't in the dark place of yesterday morning. As a bit of an update, my somewhat former BFF called yesterday and I forced myself out of the house to meet her at the park and it at least lifted my mood, even as the Florida heat lifted my temperature.

But today! The kids and I got ready in a timely fashion and did our limited-and-on-a-budget-but-still-fun Target run. Thankfully we did that early because my mom called just before 11 with news that she had fallen, broken her shoulder and could I please drive up to the far Harbor she worked in (about 30-40 minutes from me depending on traffic) and pick her up, because she couldn't drive.

So we hopped in the car and drove up to get her.

My mom is lucky in that she works as a nurse in a hospital-related clinic and is surrounded by Dr's and nurses who were able to get her preferential treatment after her injury. She is not so lucky in that my step-dad ended up being kind of an ass about the whole thing, so that's not good, but at least he isn't harassing her right now and is letting her sleep and read in relative peace at home. My husband? Would have dropped everything to make sure I was taken care of and in as little pain as possible, given the circumstances.

My nausea was manageable today - I had a moment or two where I thought the contents of my stomach might make a reappearance, but overall, things were okay. The heat doesn't help. But my mom keeps her house positively frigid, so while I was there with her, at least, things were nice and comfy!

Tuesday, July 9, 2013


I never made a conscious decision to stop blogging and/or being an active part of the blog community, but a couple of years ago when I was dealing with depression and working on getting myself back to normal, it just sort of happened. I wasn't as interested in living my life inside the computer as I had been. The problem is, I actually LOVE writing and since I've been blocked for what seems like ages now, my blogging was the only thing that was keeping me writing on a regular basis. I stopped being a daily reader of many of the blogs I'd grown to think of as friends - partially because despite the fact that I was incredibly active and loyal, I still felt that these "friends" were so distant from me (not just physically, since many of them are living in states far removed from mine) and that wasn't helping my isolation feelings when trying to find my balance.

I'm having a rough day today. I find myself wanting to do nothing, go nowhere, talk to no one. If I had my way, I'd tell the kids to fend for themselves - or better yet - send them somewhere with a qualified and responsible babysitter - and hide in my room all day. I'd read, I'd sleep, I'd watch some stupid, mindless TV and I'd be fine. I'm hoping that this isn't a new permanent state of affairs - that I'm just having a bad day fueled by the pregnancy blahs, the heat (man, is it hot outside) and the iffy-ness our air conditioning unit.

Monday, July 8, 2013

A little peace

I long for peace and quiet. With a 5-year-old and a nearly-3-year-old in my house, I rarely get it. (The 5-year-old wiggles and often talks in her sleep.) About the only time in the day when my house gets reasonably quiet is when we have the TV on and they are absorbed in whatever show or movie they are watching.

I know this doesn't speak highly of my mothering techniques. I'm well aware that most moms speak poorly of the idea of letting the television babysit your kids. I never intended to be the kind of mom who let her children watch hours of TV throughout the day. But here I am. Tired. Irritable. Nauseated. And it is SO freaking hot and humid outside. I just want a little peace.

I turned off the TV today. I've been having a crappy day and we got out of the house before 9am this morning - going to visit Gigi (my grandmother), having brunch with her at Chick-fil-A (where the kids can be crazy in the near-sound-proof indoor playground while she and I visit and watch them through the floor to ceiling window. We went to my dad's - his unairconditioned apartment providing at least a different atmosphere and different toys for them to amuse themselves for a short bit. I told them there would be no TV once we got home until quiet time. I put my foot down.

And man, am I regretting it. I just want a little peace. I want to go to the bathroom without having to hear them fighting in the next room - or worse, bringing their fights into our tiny bathroom. I want to be able to read my book in relative quietness - just 15 minutes would be nice! I want to be able to breathe without feeling my head pound against itself from the incredible volume which my bossy daughter commands her brother.

I'm keeping to my word. The TV is off. But I am counting down the minutes to quiet time when I can put Little Man to bed and park Fuss in front of the TV and close the door to my room to wallow in my misery (today everything seems to make me want to gag and retch).

Friday, June 21, 2013

Pregnancy comparisons

In being nearly 9 weeks pregnant, I find that I am still incredibly aware of my own body and I notice all the changes. This isn't surprising, in that I felt that way during both of my prior pregnancies, but I guess, maybe I figured I'd be more "chill" by the time I hit my third. But apparently not.

This time, I'm dealing with an issue of high blood pressure having recently been diagnosed (okay, technically, they were staying away from an official diagnosis, hoping that it was temporary or something) with hypertension. My Nephrologist's hope that the changes in body chemistry when I got pregnant might cause my pressure to DROP did not happen and now, here I am, on daily BP-lowering meds. (pause while I go take my morning dose).

I've had 4 (including this one and the one that ended before 8 weeks) pregnancies and none have been the same. Prior to this one, i would have said that my first and third pregnancies were so very different because I had a girl and a boy and so of course my hormones did different things to my body! But this one? Well, it has to be either a boy or a girl (we've confirmed that it is, in fact, only ONE baby) and I guess I assumed that my symptoms (specifically my morning sickness) would mirror one of the previous experiences. Not so much.

With Fuss, beginning around 8 weeks until about 16 (and then occasionally, but not daily until 18 weeks) I threw up daily. Once in the shower before I'd had the chance to have my breakfast and at least once while at work. Every day. But then I'd feel better and only the extreme cases of a certain scent or other type of trigger would stir my stomach later in the day and that was rare.

With Little Man, I rarely actually threw up. Maybe a handful of times. But from 8 weeks until about 16 weeks, I just went about in a state of mild nausea from about 7am to 4pm. (this made it difficult for me to be interested in any food early in the day, a problem that as a mom, I already struggled with since the mornings tended to get busy and I was focused on getting us ready for the day and not eating breakfast. But I needed to eat or the nausea was worse. Vicious cycle.)

This time, my first bout of nausea started at 5 weeks. Before I was even sure I was pregnant. And since then, it's been a random smattering of violent retching - some days it happens rarely, if at all and is concentrated in the morning before I've eaten. If I stay on top of my meals and snacks, I feel fine for most of the day. Other days, it feels like my body is bound and determined to make me gag repeatedly until I'd almost BEG for something to actually come up. And this isn't all focused on the first part of the day - oh no, I can feel the need to make scary noises from my throat as late as when I'm getting ready for bed at night! It's always worse and more concentrated in the morning, but the random waves of it can happen any time and without any triggers I'm aware of thus far. Sure, when the dog made a mess on Fuss's bedroom floor I had to gag my way through cleaning it up and it was awful, but the other night I was picked up a Key Lime Pie from the local grocery store for a Family Dinner dessert and I randomly thought I was going to lose it in the middle of the bakery. No idea what caused it, since the idea of Key Lime Pie or chocolate cupcakes continued to appeal, even after I composed myself.

The headaches have started again. This could be, in part, due to the fact that I've cut back my caffeine intake noticeably, or it could be the blood pressure causing it, or it could be just the usual major changes in hormones. Who knows?

I'm wearing maternity clothes, but then, this is no big shocker. I remember buying my first pair of maternity pants at 7 1/2 weeks when I was pregnant with Fuss. I hate tight clothing, so the invention of elastic waistband pants for the eternally bloated and growing pregnant woman is a beautiful thing. My best friend had given me back the tubs of "our" maternity clothes just a month or so before I got pregnant (between us, this will be the 6th child, but we've never been pregnant at the same time, so we've just shared the clothes we've amassed back and forth each time we have a baby. Another friend or two have also borrowed, but these are primarily OURS.)

I'm tired all the time. When I was pregnant with Fuss, I was working out of the home full-time and I couldn't really rest during the day. I'd come home each night and pass out on the couch while my husband made dinner, wake up, have dinner, watch some TV and fall into a deep sleep wakened only by my persistent bladder.

When I was pregnant with Little Man, Fuss was still taking a daily nap and I, too, could get in some sleep while she slept. I took a nap almost daily. This allowed me to be a little more alive in the evenings when it came to hanging out with my husband. That made things a lot easier.

Now, I have one child who naps and one who doesn't. Occasionally, I can get a nap while Little Man naps and Fuss will leave me alone while she enjoys quiet time with the sole control of the Netflix remote. Often, however, she tends to come bother me every 15 minutes with requests for snacks or drink refills or hugs.  This makes me grouchy and I've been teaching her to be more independent with instructions like "if you can't get it yourself, you can't have it."

With my 2nd pregnancy, I didn't make it to 8 weeks, where typically my nausea begins. I was slipping on the occasional pair of maternity pants, but still fitting in most of my regular stuff. I don't remember if the tiredness had started yet, but I remember a feeling of this pregnancy being "off" from the get-go. Something wasn't right, so maybe I knew subconsciously that it wouldn't last, despite my cautious hope that it would.

I'm already playing the naming game with my husband this time. We have a name picked out for a girl (we've had it for a very long time now and we're still in love with it) but while we did have a boys name, I'm less in love with it than I was 3 years ago and I've kind of gone back to the drawing board. It's funny, because some of the names I'd rejected due to an increase in popularity I'm coming back to because I just like them so much now. We shall see.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Happy Moose-aversary!

Today marks the 8-year anniversary of my marriage. I seriously think that marrying my best friend of now 18-years was the best decision I've ever made. Truly.

And we're embarking on this new journey together - this new baby. I saw the heartbeat yesterday at the Dr.'s office and I'm so excited.

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Hello in there!

Timidly peeking into the empty room. It seems like it echos in here.

It's been so long (more than a month) since I was here, writing, and even more so since I was terribly active at it, but I'm ready to get back to it. I've been working this week on my novel again and I'm motivated - just in time for summer to begin and other big changes in my life!

Only a few people know this, but I just found out I'm 5 weeks pregnant. (And most of those who DO know are my Luckies - and they wouldn't tell a soul.)

I spent a day being a little giddy every time I thought about it. My husband had a very good reaction to the news (unlike the last time we had a scare a few months ago - oh the difference a few months makes!) and I'm debating on telling my mom soon or not (she has a tendency of not being able to keep her mouth shut about things) and surprisingly, my husband even said he nearly told one of my best friends (who works with him at his office) yesterday, but he said he'd let me share the news.

Today, I've found myself looking up articles on the things to avoid during pregnancy (just to refresh my memory), playing with the Baby Name Voyager to see the popularity of the names we like, and "Windows" shopping Motherhood.com to see what is out there in maternity clothes these days... (though my BFF just gave me back our shared wardrobe of maternity clothes a couple of months ago since her husband finally said "no more kids!" and got his vasectomy.) I need to go through the collection, since it's been nearly 3 years since I was last pregnant. (Hard to believe Little Man is going to be THREE at the end of the summer!)

I know we'll be telling the immediate family (my parents, my SILs and MIL) in the next couple of weeks. We're going to be traveling soon to see SIL and her family and another SIL is moving out of state in about a month. (which makes me so sad that she won't be here for this baby!)

I've already found myself blaming the pregnancy on certain symptoms that may or may not be pregnancy related - my fatigue, my headaches. But then, I've been feeling fatigued for weeks and weeks, so it may just be coincidence.

I'm so excited. This new little Squishy is going to be a big change, but an exciting one! I think Fuss is going to be an amazing Big Sister again and Little Man... he likes babies. It will be really interesting to see how he reacts to NOT being the baby anymore.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013


I've previously mentioned my friend Beth's book, Let Me Fall: The Love Story Between God and His Dimwitted Daughter. As she talked about a few things in the book, I had several realizations about myself.

I've realized how insecure I am. Oh, I know we all have our insecurities, our weaknesses. We're human. We have elements in our life where we fall short and, to be honest, we're right to be insecure about those things. For example, I'm insecure about my athletic ability. And since I basically have none to speak of, there is certainly a valid point to that insecurity!

But one of the things I am somewhat secretly insecure about is my friendships. I'm sure it's rooted in some childhood issues I had with non-loyal friends through the years, but the more I think about it, the more odd it seems to me that an overall friendly person who never had much trouble making friends is so insecure about the ones she already has.

For example, in one group of friends I have, I always feel like an outsider. We talk a lot as a group, but I feel like, despite my best efforts, I never made it to the inner circle, I never mutually connected with one or more of the ladies that seem to have no problems connecting with other people. (I know, I'm being vague. Let me get into more detail in another example...)

My friend M. We had a rocky beginning to our friendship. As a matter of fact we've known each other for a really long time and there was a time where she truly didn't like me, despite the fact that I was close with one of her best girlfriends and her brother and pretty chummy with her boyfriend (but in a big brother/little sister sort of way, so I don't think she was worried I was trying to steal him or anything.) But now? Years later, we're quite close. In an alcohol-sodden, tear-filled confession recently, she told me I was one of only 4 close friends that she really felt she could talk to. And we do talk about a LOT. But maybe I'm just more needy than she'd like? Or maybe she's just too busy? Because every time I text her and I don't get an answer back within 24-hours, I'm always plagued with the nail-biting "why doesn't she want to talk to me?" thoughts. Whenever she makes other plans during our usual "Wednesday nights while waiting for the kids to be done with church chat time", I'm always like "is she sick of me?" We've spent most Saturday nights together since the end of October. We've dubbed it "our tradition." But when she has other plans more than one week in a row, I wonder if I did something to offend her. This girl is probably my best girlfriend right now, but I am constantly second-guessing myself as to where I stand with her.

Sometimes I long for the age where you could exchange Best Friend necklaces and just put a label on your friendships, declaring to the world that you're taken.

There's another couple of ladies that I love to spend time with. Together, we have 6 kids - we were pregnant with our firsts together and our seconds were all very close in age as well. (and we are a blond, brunette, and a redhead. Our firstborns are also a blonde, brunette, and a redhead, but the kids' hair colors don't match the proper parent. It looks amusing sometimes when we're all together in public.) I get along wonderfully with both of these ladies individually, but I really click with K. We have so much in common, despite very different family backgrounds. And I spend time with both of them separately, as well as when the three of us get together. But I have to say, I get incredibly jealous and insecure when I find out that they made a play date or adult-only double date without me! And the fact that Jo's husband gets along with both other husbands, but my husband and K's husband haven't had a lot of time to get to know each other is frustrating, since I'd LOVE to be able to do more double dates with them.

In my head, I know that my friends probably actually do like me. That they do like to spend time with me, that they aren't embarrassed by me or to be seen with me in public. But sometimes, I feel like I'm on the outside, desperately trying to make my way into their lives, to be as important to them as they are to me. And maybe that isn't possible. Or maybe it is, but it takes more time.

I'm working on this. I'm working on not worrying about every little ignored text message and every little rescheduled get together. But sometimes I wonder if I will ever be free of my self-doubts.

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Let Me Fall

Would you believe that I dealt with those darn stones off and on for nearly FIVE weeks? I have been spending more time in bed/in the bathroom than on the computer lately. It freaks Fuss out when I am moaning in pain, so I try to hide it from her as much as I can. I really do have sweet kids. When I'm not feeling well, they try to "take care" of me. Usually this involves lots of hugs, picking the weed-flowers from the yard for me, (or in Little Man's case - presenting me over and over with a silk bunch of poinsettias that never made it into the Christmas box.) and patting me on the back. Most of it is appreciated.

I read an amazing book recently. It was written by a childhood friend and we had lost touch, but the magic of Facebook and voila! And she recently wrote a book. It's not necessarily the type of book I typically enjoy - mostly non-fiction, a chronicle of her personal journey in learning to KNOW God, not just know about Him. Don't get me wrong, I've read a few "renew your faith! Fall in love with Jesus!" type of books before, but none have really reeled me in like this one.

I could relate to so much of what she talked about. She talked about the rebellion that she went through as a teen. The outside world would probably look at her (and me) and be like "oh no, YOU were one of the good kids. YOU were practically a goody-goody. There was no rebellion in your life!" but I think each person goes through their own types of rebellion at some point. You almost have to to really figure out who you are and what you believe, etc.

Anyway, you can check out Beth's book here. And stay tuned for some of the things it made me think about that weren't in direct-relation to her own thoughts and circumstances.

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

If it's not one thing...

I told my husband last night that I feel ridiculous. I feel like every.single.day. I have another issue and if I wasn't in so much pain, it would be comical. It's really like it's out of a sitcom or something.

After 10+ days of dealing with kidney issues (UTI, stones and the outlying issues with those things) I have also dealt with severe (can't stand up for more than 15 minutes without paying for it with hours on my back) back pain and then a night or two of my stomach/digestive issues, plus I'm still peeing every 15 minutes... it's just sort of crazy. I am so done with all this, but I have no idea how to BE done with it all. I'm waiting for the other shoe to drop - namely, my headaches. I *should* have another week before the hormones kick in, but I'm (mostly) off sodas and I'm limiting caffeine, so who knows? I am just so sick of being (for lack of a better term) sick! I guess more accurately, I'm sick of pain! (be it my kidneys, my bladder, my stomach, my head, my back... seriously, isn't that more than enough pain for a woman of 32 years?)

We went nearly 2 weeks without marital relations because on top of the UTI, I then got my period. We had a couple of nice days together and then the other stone passed. And then my back, and then my stomach... I hope my husband knows I still like him. I do! I want this all done with as much as he does!

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Kidney Stoned

I've been dealing with kidney issues of late and I thought I'd document the timeline! It's been one heck of ride, let me tell you!

On Monday evening, (now a week ago) I started to feel some discomfort when I went to the bathroom. Nothing awful, not a lot of urgency or frequency, but I'd certainly ramped up in my frequency (it just hadn't reached that "every 2 minutes" issue that is one of my main signs of a UTI) and my husband noticed that I was peeing with a lot of red in it (I had accidentally forgotten to flush in my rush to get to a crying child at one point) which I then noticed the next day. I upped my water in take and hoped I could flush it out of my system on my own (which I've managed to do in the past.) But as the peeing blood thing got worse throughout the day on Tuesday, I realized I probably had a full-blown UTI and I called my sister-in-law, LP, to come watch the kids while I visited a Walgreens Take Care Clinic to see if I could get some antibiotics to kill it before it got too bad. (I cannot say enough about how great the clinic was, by the way. I'd never been before, but it seemed the most convenient and cost-effective option, so I tried it. It was great.) When they tested my sample, it immediately came up with bacteria (and you could visibly see the blood in the urine, but the test also confirmed that as well.) so she was able to write me a prescription for antibiotics right away. I've been down this road before (I used to get very frequent UTIs) so I knew that I wanted Cipro and that was her first suggestion as well.

I got my meds and figured all was fine and dandy. But on Wednesday afternoon, the pain kicked in and I was starting to worry. I'd had 2 doses of ABX by that point, so I didn't know why I it was getting worse before it got better, but I assumed that was the case and texted my husband that I was feeling some pain, but I was okay.

Two hours later, that was not the case and I was pretty sure my UTI had morphed into kidney stones. (In defense of the ARNP at the clinic, she asked me if I thought I could have stones as well as an infection when I saw her on Tuesday. But since I had no pain, I told her that I didn't think I did. Oops.) My wonderful, amazing husband came home early from work and I canceled our plans for the afternoon to visit with my step-brothers and their wives since the one who lives far away was visiting. (I was really bummed to miss them, too! I haven't seen them since October.) My amazing daughter watched out for her brother for about an hour in between the first kicks of awful pain and my husband coming home. I put on PBS kids for them and she dealt with the snacks and drinks while I writhed in pain in my bedroom. She's an amazing kid.

I had some left over pain meds from my oral surgery a few months ago and I took that after my husband came home to see if it would help me get through the pain. I tend to hate the effects of the maximum dose of pain meds on me (even OTC meds like Excedrine make me loopy if I take the full dose.) so I didn't take the full dose, but it should have had more of an effect than it did. I was able to sit up and relax enough to eat (I was quite hungry by this time and of course, medicine on an empty stomach is a bad deal) so my husband grabbed some take out for me.  Unfortunately, while he was out, my stomach rebelled and I threw up. But then I felt better for awhile. I ate my dinner (yummy Thai food) and while I still had pain, I felt a lot better. I guess the pain meds had finally (2 1/2 hours after I took them) started to help. I could feel the pain, but this way, it was bearable.

Unfortunately, that was short lived. Before we got to the 4-hour mark on the meds, I was in a world of pain again. My husband sat next to me on the bed and held my hand. We were watching TV, but I don't remember what was on. As the night wore on, Imy pain ramped up and the 2nd dose of medicine (I was allowed 2 pills in 6 hours. The 2nd one did NOTHING, didn't even relax me to make it bearable. It just got worse and worse. At 10:15, I said "I don't think I'm going to make it through the night." There were tears in my eyes and I was laying in the fetal position with my husband rubbing my back gently. He called my mom and asked her to come sit with the kids who were long since asleep. As I got up to put some clothes on, I threw up again. Thai food the second time around is definitely NOT yummy.

I felt the tiniest bit better after throwing up, but there was still So. Much. Pain. It was constant, but then it would notch up in waves.

My mom arrived and we went to the ER.  We are lucky enough to live 2 minutes from an Emergency center. We checked in with the new electronic thingy. It had been almost exactly a year since I was last there (something like a year and a week since I broke my foot.) and I even ended up having the same Dr who said "did I just see you last week?" he'd looked at the date, but not the year! We got into a room and talked with the triage nurse. They had me do a urine culture (which was interesting since the door to the restroom didn't lock and some guy walked in on me. Awkward.) and took me for a CAT Scan. The CAT Scan was awful since I had to lay down completely stretched out on a hard surface and put my hands over my head - my kidney was crying out in pain! I worked on doing my labor breathing to get me through it until the voice that sounded somewhat like Mr. Carson the Butler from Downton Abbey told me to hold my breath! (so much for breathing through the pain!) They were able to immediately determine that I had at least 2 stones - one on each side! This surprised me, since I was really only feeling the pain on one side. They took me back to my room, sent the test results to the Radiologist for more detailed info and took me back to my room. Since they had the stones confirmed, they were FINALLY able to now give me some pain medication and a cup of water. They also slipped some Zofran in to help with the nausea.

I'm not that into pain meds because they often make me loopy, but when you're in that much pain, a good strong dose of pain medication is akin to hearing the Hallelujah Chorus! Relief! I dozed a bit, since, by this time, it was after midnight and well past my bedtime. My husband hooked up my Nook to some headphones and was watching reruns of Scrubs through all this and we watched an episode together until I was so out of it that I couldn't focus any more.

It took over an hour to get back word from the Radiologist as to the details of my stones. I had a couple that were small and easily passable, but I had one (the one causing me all the pain, no doubt) that was over 6mm, which is above the size (though not by much) that the average person can pass on their own without intervention. They hoped that because I had had them before, that I might be able to pass it anyway (the maximum size that they consider passable is 5mm) and they gave me a prescription for oral pain medications for the next few days, along with a prescription for Zofran, just in case I continued to throw up.

By the time we left, it was 1:45am. We skipped the 24-hour pharmacy across the street assuming that between the IV meds they'd given me while there and the ones I had at home, i could now make it through the night and DaddyFuss could fill the prescription in the morning when he took Fuss to school.

I had to get up at 3:30 to take more pills, but in between and after I was able to sleep. I spent the bulk of the next day drugged and watching TV, (though I did have one more bout of vomiting before I got my oral dose of Zofran, so apparently that wasn't completely over) and I've dealt with varying degrees of discomfort since, but my husband returned to work on Friday, my dad came to help out for a few hours that afternoon, since I had a bit of a regression. I made it through the weekend and I'm pretty sure that by now I've passed it. I felt some much lower pains during the weekend, but overall, I havn't felt that horrific pain since Thursday evening. Not entirely sure exactly when I passed it, so I don't know for sure, but the absence of pain, in this case, is my confirmation.

Monday, March 25, 2013

Portrait Outfits

I've been helping a friend plan her outfits for her family portraits. It's tricky because she doesn't want to "match" (varying body types, multiple core families, etc.) so I've been planning for both my own (just for fun) and for them. I got inspired by the awesome site Click It Up a Notch who is a great photographer with great ideas and also posts regular ideas for coordinating outfits for a family portrait. I'm not nearly as creative as she is, nor do I have her eye for color combos, but I came up with a couple of samples. The first is what I came up with for our little family - mom, dad, little girl, little boy. The second is 2 core families with multiple kids. I thought they turned out pretty good!

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Cheddar Bay Biscuit Loaf

I found this today. Yummy.Can't wait to try it out.

This is Red Lobster's Cheese Biscuit recipe done in a loaf pan.
3 cups flour
1 Tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/8 teaspoon black pepper
4 ounces cheddar cheese, cut into 1/4 inch cubes
1 1/4 cups milk
3/4 cup sour cream
3 Tablespoons of butter, melted
1 egg, lightly beaten. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9×5 loaf pan with oil. In a bowl, whisk together the first 5 ingredients. Carefully stir in cheese cubes until covered in flour mixture, this will help prevent your cheese sinking to the bottom of your loaf of bread. In a different bowl, whisk together the remaining ingredients. Fold the wet mixture into the flour and cheese mixture, stir until just combined, do not over stir. Spread the mixture into the loaf pan. Bake for 45-50 minutes. Let cool 10 minutes and then remove from pan. Allow to cool for one hour before slicing and serving.

Monday, March 18, 2013

You live, you learn

I can't remember, have I used that post title before? Probably, it seems to be so applicable to so many situations in life. Maybe that's why Alanis Morissette was such a hit - her songs really hit home to a lot of people. Isn't it ironic?

Anyhow, I've been deal with some STUFF lately. Debilitating back pain - that's fun. I've spent hours flat on my back in the last couple of weeks. Not fun.

In addition, our family has suffered a major disappointment in the last week. My SIL, J, who has been teaching at our alma mater (my husband and his 3 sisters and I all graduated from this small private school) for the last nine years. It's where we put Fuss for PreK4 this year and where we intended to put her for Kindergarten next year. And after 9 years of dedicated service, the Superintendent has decided not to renew her contract for next year. His reasons are vague and lame-sounding and we are all assuming that there is something else going on - whether he has someone else in mind for the position or whatever, I really don't know, but it seems too random, sudden and unexpected.

And now we don't know what to do with Fuss for next year. A good portion of our motivation for putting her there (despite the large expense and sacrifice it will take) was to have her there with her Aunt J. And even removing that basic idea, now we need to figure out if it is disloyal to her to support the school by enrolling or not. But her 2 best friends are likely going to be there next year and I was SOOOO looking forward to having that connection to them and their families. And the other schools that are on our list are just as expensive, if not more so.

I'm just so sad about this. The idea of NOT putting her there - it makes my heart break a little. We were once betrayed by the leadership of the church I grew up in - where we got married - and between losing that, my dad selling his business last year and now this... I feel like much of my childhood is disappearing somehow.

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Just playing around

I came across this little game to play at a bridal shower recently and I sent the questionnaire to my husband. The object is for the bride (me) to answer the questions the same as he would answer them. (to play the game, you give her a piece of bubble gum to chew for every missed answer. If she doesn't answer many right, she's gonna have a mouth full of gum!)
I'm amused to see what he has to say.

  1. Who was [groom's] best friend growing up?
    Adam probably. Or the kid that got him into a lot of trouble - I think his name was Eric?
  2. Who was [bride's] best friend growing up?
    Katie B
  3. Where was [groom] born?
  4. Where was [bride] born?
  5. What was your first date together?
    Did we have a first date? When do you start counting? Dinner at Jotos? Driving to Tampa for donuts or a movie?
  6. When was your first kiss together?
    We were 15. At my house on the "Magic Couch" before the soccer kick off
  7. How many kids do you guys want to have?
    He wanted 4, I wanted 2.
  8. What is the theme of your wedding? (funny if the guy hasn't been very involved in planning)
    Let's get hitched!
  9. Where will you guys retire?
    No idea. Probably here.
  10. What does [groom] think is [bride's] best physical feature?
    My boobs?
  11. What does [bride] think is [groom's] best physical feature?
  12. One word to describe [bride].
  13. One word to describe [groom].
  14. What is [bride's] favorite holiday?
  15. What is [groom's] favorite holiday?
  16. What is [groom's] favorite thing [bride] cook for him?
    Anything. Or Oatmeal Cake
  17. What is [bride's] favorite thing [groom] cooks for her?
    O-fredo sauce, Shrimp Creole, oatmeal white chocolate cranberry cookies
  18. Which one of you is better with money?
  19. Which one of you is better with kids?
  20. Which one of you is better at cooking?
  21. Which one of you is better at dancing?
  22. If [bride] could go anywhere in the world, where would she go?
    Europe - specifically Italy or Scotland - followed closely by New Orleans or Oregon wine country
  23. If [groom] could go anywhere in the world, where would he go?
    Italy or Oregon Wine country
  24. What is [groom's] dream car?
    Corvette stingray or a pick up truck
  25. What is [bride's] favorite outfit?
    jeans and a nice blouse

Monday, March 4, 2013

Big Family

I've been watching Brothers & Sisters on Netflix lately and thinking about how much fun it would be in the future to have a big family bustling around. My husband comes from a family of 4 children so it's fun to see all the ins and outs of having all these people involved in your life - knowing you most of your life, etc. Lots of history and stories and love in big families. I think about how great it would be to have a bunch of kids (4 or 5 - I'm not looking to be the Duggars or anything) and I start dreaming...

And then I start dealing with reality. My husband and his sisters love each other. And they get along a lot better than a lot of people I know. But when they all get together (like this week while his oldest sister and her family are in town) there is ALWAYS drama.

So then I rethink it. Is it worth it? Do the ups outweigh the downs?

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Meme - borrowed from April

My friend April did this meme the other day and I liked the questions (and anything to have something to write about...) so, here you go!

Do you have any strange phobias?
Strange? Not really. I used to have a fear of the dark (seriously, I was 14 before I got through it) but now I LOVE the dark, so that's not really applicable anymore. I periodically have the thought that terrifies the snot out of me that my husband might die and leave me a widow with young children, but I think every married woman worries about that at some point or another. When driving over tall/long bridges, I tend to start to think through each step that I'd do if I were to get hit and go over the edge of the bridge (especially when the kids are with me - I avoid the Skyway whenever possible if they are in the car. Or I prefer for another adult to be with me)

Do you sleep with or without clothes on?
Clothes! Yes! I can't usually stand pants on my legs (they ride up around my knees) but I'm always wearing a top (t-shirt, tank, nightgown) and undies.

If you are outside, what are you most likely doing? Trying to figure out when I can go back inside? Watching my kids play or "visiting" with my dad who smokes and is not allowed to smoke in my house.

Simple but extremely complex. Favorite band? I'd probably have to say the Barenaked Ladies. My husband and I loved them in college and even went to an amazing New Year's concert by them a few years ago - probably the best concert I've ever been to.

Do you believe in karma? Karma? No. Do I think people reap what they sow? Yes, definitely!

Who is your celebrity crush? Matthew McConaughey. He is just. so. cute. And his voice...

What’s a sound you hate; sound you love? I HATE the sound of fabric or styrafoam or paper/cardboard rubbing up against something. Major pet peeve, actually. I LOVE the sound of my son's laugh.

Choose: East Coast or West Coast? I'm an east coaster and I've never made it further west than Colorado. I'd probably have to say East coast, simply because I'm more familiar with it.

What was the last book you read? I'm embarrassed to admit it was a trashy romance called Never Love a Highlander. It was pretty good, actually, but I don't typically read that type of book anymore. Before that I read Prairie Tale, the autobiography of Melissa Gilbert and it was great. (oh, I also read Good-night Moon to my son this morning)

Do you like the smell of gasoline? No, ew.

What was the last movie you saw? In the theater with kids, Brave. In the theater without kids, I can't remember. April said Skyfall and I saw that one, but I'm nearly positive I've seen one since then and for the life of me, I can't remember what movie. At home... The Princess and the Frog with the kids and The Blindside without them.

What’s the worst injury you’ve ever had? Last spring I fell at home and broke my foot. The actual break was somewhat minor, but I did severe soft tissue damage to my toes and ankle and was laid up for awhile, had to go through PT, etc. Crutches SUCK.

What’s the last thing you purchased? Almond milk.

Can you touch your nose with your tongue?  no.

Is there anything pink within 10 feet of you? A pink parisian pop cinch bag from Thirty-One, my daughter's Valentine from her daddy

What’s your favorite animal? If pressed, I'd say penguins. My husband and I can sit for a long time at the penguin exhibit at SeaWorld and just watch them. (my joy is dampened by now having seen Happy Feet). I also love the look of baby hedgehogs, but I've never seen one in person.

What were you doing last night at 12 AM? Dealing with my son who was up, screaming with another bad ear infection.

What’s a song that always makes you happy when you hear it? Most of the Glee music, We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together by Taylor Swift (sue me) and any of the first 5 or 6 tracks on The Fray's How To Save a Life album.

What is the single best decision you have made in your life so far? to marry my husband

What’s the last song you listened to? SaraRose (a friend of my daughter's) singing "I'm a Missionary Helper". But since I'm guessing you're referring to on the radio... something by Pink.

What is your current desktop picture? Little Man as a baby sitting in his Bumbo with a HUGE smile on his face.

You accidentally eat some radioactive vegetables. They were good, and what’s even cooler is that they endow you with the super-power of your choice! What is that power? I have no idea. Probably to be invisible.

You can re-live any point of time in your life. The time-span can only be a half-hour, though. What half-hour of your past would you like to experience again? I really don't know. I'm going to go with my wedding ceremony because if I got to relive it again, I'd purposely make myself enjoy the moment a little more. As it was, I was so giddy and focused on the "when do we say I do?" part that I don't remember a lot of it!

You just got a free plane ticket to anywhere. You have to depart right now. Where are you gonna go? If my husband can come with me, I'd go to either New Orleans or Oregon wine country. If on my own, I'd go to visit my sister in GA (and while we're wishing, I'd wish that she had a closer airport to her dinky little town)

Monday, February 4, 2013

Daddy's boy

Wow. Been a long time. Oops.

So lately, Little Man has been all about his Daddy. Now, this isn't really a new thing, since he has always loved his Daddy, but right now, it's Daddy Daddy Daddy "no Mama." and that makes me really, really sad. He's been my Little Man for nearly 2 1/2 years now and he's always had a connection with me. But if there is even a chance Daddy is around - or when Daddy SHOULD be around (the other day, my husband had to do an overnight out of town so the next morning there was a lot of sadness when Daddy couldn't get him out of his bed in the morning) - I am NOT GOOD ENOUGH. Waking up from bed/naps, getting out of the car, kissing boo boos, bedtime it's "no Mama, DADDY."

I know that my husband has done nothing to push this. He's a good guy and he's an amazing father and kids just respond to him (even kids who aren't his own) and he has always had a good relationship with our children. But Fuss was his special baby from the get go - she bonded to him in a special way from the beginning (and she and I bonded, too, but there was something magical about them) and despite my reticence about having a son (boys scared me) Little Man and I had a THING from the beginning. We were connected.

Until now. Now I'm rejected. It started with him refusing to cuddle as much as he once did. He's a busy, growing boy, so I accepted that as simply just him growing up. But lately this Daddy-thing has really been bothering me.

He still hugs me and smiles at me and plays with me - when Daddy is at work.

I know it's normal for a boy to want to attention of their father. Heaven knows there are SOOOO many books on the subject (some even going to far as to say that a boy without a father can never feel as complete no matter what a mother does to try to fill that void, etc.) and I know it's a natural part of him growing up that he wants to company of a man/other boys instead of just his mama. But it still makes me sad.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Boring post about the way school drop off/pick up used to be

Julia has written a few posts lately that talk about the slightly absurd-but-not-really school pick up concept at her son's school and I got me to thinking a lot about Fuss's school and the pick up situation.

You see, I went to this school. I started in Kindergarten and graduated high school from this school, so I was literally there for 13 years and I remember how pick-up and drop off worked and it all worked wonderfully back then when the school had over 700 students. Now that the school is closer to 500 students, I don't get why we now have to have all these "rules and regulations" about drop-off/pick up. To be honest, I don't know why anything had to change at all, expect to update technology for the current societal norms and to repair or replace what wore out or broke, etc. But alas, they have changed MUCH and now there are RULES that we parents are expected to follow when we drop off and pick up our kids.

You see, when I was a kid, every family had their little section of our sprawling campus for pick up. The parents would always park THERE and the kids would always wait THERE and rarely was there is a situation where the parents and children couldn't find each easily, (providing, of course, that everyone was on time and not dawdling.) I have many memories of hanging out in a subsection ("next to the log cabin" and then later "at the front of the log cabin") of campus as a young child (this was our spot from K-3rd grade and then again in 6th grade) and playing there and looking up to see my mom or my carpool driver pull into a parking space. The year (5th grade) that my parents could never seem to pick me up in a timely manner due to work responsibilities, I hung out in my former 1st grade teacher's classroom and helped her grade papers until my parents would FINALLY arrive. And there was another year that the (annoying) boys I carpooled with and I had to walk to the back entrance by the chapel and wait there. And then if one of the mothers was late (there were 3 moms involved, so it was never as simple for them to remember their days as it should have been - plus, one mom had a toddler at home and another mom had 2 kids who attended different schools than ours, so I'm sure they had a lot on their minds) we had to trek BACK to front of campus to borrow the phone from the office ladies and call home to find out who was coming and if they had forgotten or what - oh the days before cell phones!

Drop off was simpler. Elementary aged children were dropped off in a car line, type scenario between 8:05 and 8:25. If you had small children (under 3rd grade) and you needed to drop them off before then, you took them to before care (held in the study hall, attached to the library) and the 3rd-12th graders would just hang out in front of the buildings that housed the classrooms until the first bell or until the (elementary) teachers went to their classrooms after their (daily, mandatory) before school prayer meeting, which ended at 8:15. There were always adults acting as crossing guards and car line supervisors, so we weren't completely on our own with no supervision.

High school students who were lucky enough to drive themselves or be driven by an older sibling/friend parked across the street in the student lot and walked across the street at the cross walk, manned by the trusty head maintenance man (who still works there today, though he's no longer the HEAD maintenance man.) No one was encouraged to mill about campus before 8am. Some of us (myself included) high schoolers had a before-school class (yes, a class - which we got credit for - that met BEFORE school began. It was an elite ensemble of singers - audition only selection and as far as attendance went - Mrs W was stricter than most about being on time. She took attendance at 7:30 and we were singing by 7:31. There was no wandering around ahead of time and the few who attempted to park on campus and move their cars and then make it to home room on time often found themselves late to home room - or fined for parking on campus to begin with.)

This year when I found myself having to drive on campus to drop off my 4 year old, I thought I'd be the smart, knowledgeable alumni and enter the back way, park in a little-used parking lot and walk my girl to class. I was reminded after the first few days that that was an "exit only" in the morning and the front gate was "entrance only" in the afternoon. They are so strict now with the kids - there is absolutely no "milling about" in the morning or afternoons. I guess I get it for safety reasons, but when I was a kid, that's how we were able to hang out with lots of other kids from other grades/classes - there's not a lot of time for that during the school day, of course. And I LOVED that. (also how I met my now-husband - he wasn't in my grade in school. Our first conversation as friends was hanging out on campus after school and many, many more as the months and years went by were also held while we waited for our parents/siblings to pick us up.)

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Happy New Year!

"Love more, yell less." I got that from my friend, April in her tweeted list of goals for 2013. Yeah, I think I need to add that mine. I was all proud of myself last Friday when I realized I hadn't yelled at my kids all day. And then I yelled. Oops. Working on that.

I am also really focusing on ACTING not just planning this year. I am SO ready to DO SOMETHING about the chaos.

This week is step one - getting started and working out the system - (I've got a lot of ideas, just need to refine what works) and and then my year of organization will really swing into gear!