Tuesday, April 26, 2011

It's a Wascally Wainy Day.

Educational Plan Is
Not my girl, Defined

IEP, letters
Three. Words of Dread?  Yes Indeed.
Eff Bureaucracy. 

I. Am more than words.
Extraordinary Me! 
Paper pushers, y'all. 

I'm assuming y'all is one syllable? 

I do believe this is textbook avoidance behavior.  Obviously, the IEP was today.  More later - maybe.  No surprises, no drama, just ill defined, poorly understood feelings of blech


In other news:
Matt took my camera to work to document tornado damage and failed to return it, so am waiting on the kindness of family for Easter photos.  Worst case scenario, I'll do some laundry and Recreate the Day, not that I would ever confess to stooping so low.  Surely there's a joke in there somewhere about Easter Outfits  rising anew?  I am surely going to hell. 

On a bright note, my car radio did rise again and is working just fine [I am SUCH a heathen], despite the bottle of water I dumped on it, so that's one less bit if broken electronics.  To compensate, my little jug of milk for coffee at work exploded in the car this morning so now my fellow commuters can also enjoy my functioning radio because I have the windows down so I don't gag on the lovely eau de rank cow.

Aren't I charming tonight?  Just so you know it's not all hell & brimstone over here, my son & I read Amelia Bedelia together tonight - When Amelia made lemon pie for the Rogers, he added that Gigi makes really good lemon pie too and he would like some more and when are we going to see her again?  Adorable.

Then he pointed at the fox stole on Mrs. Rogers and asked what it was.  Ummmm....  I really don't want to ruin the book for him because he associates it with lemon pies and Gigi, and he is doing a spectacular job reading it himself, so "That is a Dead Fox She is Wearing Around Her Neck"  didn't seem appropriate.  Telling him it was a Pet Fox seemed disingenuous (and he'd probably want to know why it didn't have a bigger role in the story).  I went with Pretend Fox.  Best I could do on the fly.

And last, in a sign I need more sleep - my boy periodically has to gather objects for "letter bags" at school.  For the A bag, you toss in an Apple, Alligator, Altoid tin - you get the idea.  He had fun doing this in preschool but he's reading Amelia Bedelia now, so I think the moment may have passed, but whatever, the school year is almost over.  This morning we did 'W'.  [Normally I wouldn't help him with this but it was one of Those Mornings and I forgot to have him do it last night].  So I'm pointing out the Watermelon (plastic picnic piece), Windmill (Geotrax), Whale, Wacecar....

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Do Numerologists Celebrate Easter?

I updated my profile page not too long ago to explain how I edged into this whole bloggin' thing sideways.  I haven't been very stealthy about keeping the kids' names hidden in Christmas cards and kindergarten art, but I also don't use them in google-able text.  It was clear we lived in the mid-west but not till I mentioned Albert Pujols would anyone have been able to put us in a particular state.  (No, "Flyover Country" is not a legally recognized entity). 

It's also fairly clear that Matt works for an airline, since our recent travel travails were due, in part, to our status as "non-revenue generating passengers".

So although the evidence is there, it is still with some resignation I pull all the strings together...  And yet, I cannot not tell this story. 

Guess where Matt was Friday night?  Terminal 1, C concourse.... when the tornado struck.  He's fine.  Everyone at the airport was fine - sounds like there were some lacerations, maybe some stitches, but nothing life threatening.  City wide, there were swaths of homes wiped out but I haven't heard of any fatalities, nor even of any serious injuries.

Matt said it really did sound like a train.  The weather was nasty and the tornado sirens had been going on and off all day.  Not unusual but he was still keeping an eye on the window when he realized some of the lightening strikes were actually transformers blowing.  Then he heard the roar, and saw paper flying thru the air - clearly a building had been struck.  He and his people starting moving - and then it was all over in less than a minute.  Nature at its most fearsome, over in a flash.

Here's a video of the tornado hitting on youtube:

Here's another - it's longer, but catches some of the actual tornado, gets some immediate behind the scenes damage shots, AND is set to some rockin' music.  Matt knows a couple of the guys caught on camera. 

Also, some of the best still photos of the damage were, oddly, in the Kanas City paper

Anyone reading along may have also noted my fascination with random statistics and the whims of fate.  I like funny coincidences and to track improbabilities, but as our native son may or may not have said, there are "lies, damn lies, and statistics".  Despite scoring the long odds a few times, I haven't (yet) developed a full blown paranoid persecution complex - they are just numbers.  At best they add some color to my stories.  At worst I'm guilty of special snowflake syndromeWe've been incredibly lucky in many ways too - heck, we're still married almost 12 years in, despite all The Drama.  Just like hitting the lottery, right?  (wait...  can I choose?  No, no... I jest).

But still...  A TORNADO?!?!?

I googled the odds of being struck by a tornado but could only find the odds of dying in one, which were, if you're curious, anywhere from 1 in 60,000 to 1 in 4.5 million, depending on which website you check.  See Mr. Twain's statement, above.  According to the National Weather Service, Friday's tornado was an EF4 immediately before it struck the airport.  According to Wiki, there are about 1,200 tornadoes a year in the US; less than 1% of them are an EF4.  Funny stuff. 

Side note:  I find it odd that the severity of the tornado is only ranked in terms of damage caused - sort of like being graded just for showing up.  If they hit an airport, and drive shrapnel thru multi-million dollar jets, they get a higher ranking than if they were twice as strong but only hit a meadow.  Hurricanes are rated by wind speeds - Probably not too many folks volunteering to measure a tornado's wind speed though.

I don't have a profound summation, and since we have to leave for Easter dinner, not even a closing haiku.  Just that my goodness, this is a magical marvelous life, this life of ours.  Happy Easter.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Of Llamas and Bunnies and Aesop

There was no blogging or running last night.  I went to bed immediately after the kids and woke up this morning feeling like Mary freakin' Poppins.  There may even have been humming heard hereabouts in the morning, though I can't swear to it - the miracle of a full night's sleep.  But then I got to work and learned that the Massive Swirling Sucking Vortex of Money, otherwise known as Matt's car, lost yet another critical operating system, so I lost a little spring from my step. 

And then, purely hypothetically, I spent most of my day on an imaginary case which may or may not involve - purely for dramatic purposes, you understand - and adult person Llama who was living independently with only part-time assistance.  Occasional Llama care, as it were.  EXCEPT this Llama didn't know not to cross the street when the "No Llama Walking" sign was flashing.  Not that elephants and rhinos and hippos don't sometimes ignore "No Elephant  Walking"signs (et al.), but in my imagination (which is, you understand, the ONLY place this little allegory unfolded) I expect the nature of the Llama will be called to question.  And it will be asked if Llamas know enough to read the No Llama Walking sign.  And it will be asked if we should hold Llamas and Elephants to different legal standards. 

And this entirely fictional fairytale made me Very Sad, because I happen to like Llamas a great deal, and this hypothetical Llama was hurt when it crossed the street against the "No Llama Walking" sign.  And I hope that if I were to ever raise a pretend Llama, I would teach it to cross the street very, very carefully. 

Is everyone thoroughly confused?  Excellent!  I was going to go with camels but I think camels spit.

So then I was driving home, idly dreaming up the Haiku of the Day (below), and trying to talk myself out of a foul mood when I had to stop short and the giant bottle of water I had carelessly left perched uncapped on the center console (because I'm Hydrating now!) went flying forward and poured all over my radio.  I dried it off as best I could but then a full minute later my speakers crackled ominously.  Excellent! 

And then I started giggling.  Because I thought that it was a good thing I just bought a $20 Nano since I'd clearly just shorted out my radio, nevermind that the Nano and the water were essentially serving the same end goal*, and wasn't life funny and circular like that. 
     *The 13 Mile Plan

Then the giggling might've turned a shade manic.  Because, REALLY?!  There was not enough chocolate in the house to fix this day - at least not without doing in the Easter bunny.  Then I thought of the old cop joke - Put down the chocolate bunny and slllooowwly back away.  Then I started laughing harder because it was a good thing I've been running, what with all the chocolate bunny and jelly bean eating that's been going on around here lately. 

I just hope my fellow commuters thought there was something really funny on my now-shorted-out radio and not that they were witnessing Mommy losing it on her way home.  Am off to the treadmill to burn up some of the Easter candy I may or may not have purloined from the children.  Here's wishing you solid chocolate Easter bunnies to spare and secure water bottle caps. 
Starter frizzled. Am
No Mechanic. And I have
No Horse. Pony up!  
One Grim-looking Bunny

Tuesday, April 19, 2011


My girl's cognitive, OT, and PT testing was last week.  Her speech evaluation was supposed to be today but was pushed till tomorrow.  Our IEP is next week.  We've had busy, emotional month (heck, we've had a busy, emotional couple of years) but I've been holding my breath over this.  We are in a very safe, very quiet spot right now - early intervention is chugging along, my girl is happy and progressing, adorable, and even increasingly nice to the extended family.  There are no yardsticks around with which we will be whopped upside the head for thinking everything is "normal".  No social snubs, no administrative battles.  I would very much like to stop for just a moment and remember this. 

Stop before her skills are rated, ranked, and assigned a developmental age incompatible with the birthday we will celebrate this summer.  Before we will be forced to downplay her abilities in order to maximize her therapies.  Before we start wondering how much extra money we can - how much we should - put toward private therapy.  Before we start feeling around blindly in the dark for the line, that may or may not exist, between simply loving and enjoying our child and pushing her to her "fullest potential".  If we sit very, very still it will all be OK. 

I was going to write about the vocabulary list I filled out for her evaluation but I'll save that for later.  For now, just Shhhhhhh.....

Monday, April 18, 2011

Welcome to the 21st Century

Remember how I wrote I was a techno-phobe?  Well, brother told me my BATSH*T CRAZY PLAN was simply not going to work sans music.  I hemed & hawed but perked up when I realized Shuffles are only $50.  This is what happens when you wait 10 years to adopt new technology - the price comes down.  Genius!  I was about to bite when I mentioned The Plan to a co-worker (the more people I tell, the less likely I am to quietly slink off course.  I might be carried off on a stretcher in a blaze of bursted knee tendons, but there will be less humiliation if I get a note from my MD.  Behold the magic of peer pressure.) ...when said co-worker offered me an old Nano of his for $20.  Sold! 

[Pretend there's a picture of my new toy here....
I hurt too much to go upstairs to get the camera. 
Advil does NOT cure all]

First thought - See?  It pays to talk to people.  Will have to remember that.

Second - I just checked and this appears to be a first or second generation Nano but still, ohmygoodness, it is a thing of brilliance.  What was I waiting for?  Just because the masses are raving about something does not inherently make it wrong.  Will have to remember that too.  Note:  This does not apply to Twilight. 

Third - I've ignored all the fuss about Apple killing the music industry but I get it now.  Post college/pre-kids I bought a bunch of cds because I liked the one track that was getting airtime, only to find the other 9 songs were meh.  Not to say there weren't hidden gems and I have my favorite groups who put out nothing but winners but if given a choice, I'm going to buy the one song for $.99 $1.29.  If I were less bitter about the dozens of one hit wonders I previously bought, and if I had a bigger budget & more memory, I might be wont to explore, but not so much right now. 

Yes, this is a tacit condemnation of those artists whining because I don't want to buy their other 9 meh songs, but I also just bought an ipod-thingy, so they can comfortably ignore my opinion as there's a slight chance I may be slightly out of touch with the issues.  [Except I'm the consumer & already voted with my Visa].

Fourth - I have zero recall for names and titles.  I had to google lyrics to figure out who was what - FAMOUS lyrics.  My brother vetted my play list and I could hear him rolling his eyes at me over the phone when I told him who I had to look up.  Despite my New! Nano!  I am still hopeless uncool. 

He did laugh though when I listed my top songs:
     I Will Survive - Gloria Gaynor
     Stayin' Alive - BeeGees
     Fighter - Christina Aguilera
     Uprising - Muse

Anyone sensing a theme?  Other survival themed suggestions eagerly welcomed.  If I get desperate I might buy the Rocky theme song.  Or maybe Chariots of Fire?  I also need more hip hop, because the soulful rock ballads aren't cutting it 20 minutes in - but my brother was otherwise dead on about the music helping distract from The Pain.  On a bright note I ran 5 miles on Sunday and did not die.  So there's hope.  [Actually it was 4.8 but there were Hills].  Rumor has it I only have to get to 10 and then race day adrenaline will carry me the remaining 3 miles.  I have 6ish weeks left so in theory I can add a mile/week and it'll all be hunky-dory fun.  Riiiggghhhhhtttt.

Miscellaneous notes:  My brother ran his first half marathon this past weekend.  He called me after, giddy from his runner's high and his under 10 minute miles ("I felt great and thought about running the whole marathon but [his wife] was waiting"  - Ass).  He called me the next day, having crashed and hurting, but am still sending him a big public CONGRATULATIONS.  I've warned him my goal is to stay upright, not break the 9 minute mile, but if anyone is going to goad me over that finish line, it's him.

Also, after running one night my son came over to give me a hug.  I warned him I was sweaty & stinky but he gave me a hug anyway and said I wasn't that stinky (....wait for it...) because you didn't run that far.   Bedtime for you, kid!

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Mentally Meandering

Link heavy odds and ends from other sources -

From Cate, on Thursday, on hats:  I sincerely hope they come back into style.  Not that they haven't has stopped me, but mine are usually of the floppy anti-sun variety.  Not many opportunities to wear a fascinator to work.  I guess I'd have to take it off once I got inside anyway?  Or maybe just the guys have to do that?  Dunno.  I could move to London and take up horse racing... Or Kentucky?  For your viewing pleasure:  Royal Ascot 2010 , or Kentucky Derby 2009, or the Aintree Grand National, which also posted Thursday.

Also, scarves:  Also hasn't stopped me but always a distinct possibility I look like I'm about to dole out peanuts and point to the emergency exits.  In Things to do in Denver When You're Dead, Andy Garcia says his dearest wish is the return of the ascot (we'll igore the ironic tone in which it was said).  It's one of the best lines of the movie but is tragically not listed on IMDB.  At the end (spoiler alert!), he's on a boat wearing a navy blazer, with ascot.  Maybe I should take up sailing. 

Second movie reference:  In Thursday's post I wrote my daughter was P.I.S.S.E.D.  There was something... floating around the edges of my head but I couldn't put my finger on it.  And no, I only had ONE glass of Bordeaux, my Thursday over-indulgences were limited to jelly beans, not wine.  It finally came to me:  The Sweetest Thing.  Which I don't think got great reviews but still makes me laugh hysterically, 9 years and about 57 viewings later. 
     Assistant:  Well Mr. Mooney is downstairs and he is P-I-S-E-D.
     Jane:  Pised?

From my brother, on living as a coastie in the Midwest:  My neighbors wave at me as I drive down the street.  And not just the neighbors familially obligated to wave, the ones I haven't even met.  It's simultaneously sweet - and creepy.   I completely identify with this article except the part about the clogs, because I love the fancy shoes.  [In reading this - Derby Hats, Ascots, & Fancy Shoes - you might think I did not have sufficient dress up clothes as a child.  You might be right.  See also:  hair accessories, below.  Barbies were verboten in the house.  Apparently the lack thereof left a lingering lust thereafter.  Stick that into your parenting hat]. 

From Alison, on Jon Stewart and Toemaggedon:  You might not have noticed, but my girl has an obscenely large collection of small shelf devoted to her hair accessories, including those special teensy rubber bands that look like the ones your orthodontist gave you when you thought you were the most miserable misunderstood creature in all of humanity (the most miserable creature not playing dress up).  I was reading to her one night when her brother came in to make sure she was WIDE awake [There are few things that set me off as much as the Disruption of Bedtime.  My son excels at this].  He is rooting through her stuff, starts playing with the rubber bands, then asks me for a ponytail. 

I said fine, whatever it takes, but then he had to leave, so his sister could go to sleep.  I gathered up what locks I could but his hair is pretty short so all I could gather were his bangs - less ponytail, more unicorn-like.  We laugh, I revel in how open minded I am... and then he immediately starts pretending his forehead a gun and starts running around going Boom-Bam-SheeZow!  [His only victim?  Bedtime]

No, he doesn't have any toy guns - which is a whole different post.  Point being, I could put him in a dress and heels, and he'd turn the heels into climbing pitons and the fabric into a parachute.  I don't think a little pink nail polish...  Nevermind, people are ridiculous.  The End.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Red (eyed) Bull

In a freak bit of good luck we were first up for surgery today [minor outpatient surgery on my girl's eyes  - Strabismus Repair, Round II].  Last time we were not first.  No, no - decidedly not first.  Last time we got there at 10 and didn't even start the process till 3ish.  Trying to keep an active 18 month old (at the time) happy for FIVE hours, when her last meal was one state back, was tiring
There was no gentle flower eating today

This time we were there at 6 and out the door by 10:30.  Though the last hour or two in the recovery room she was P.I.S.S.E.D.  Angry like a bull trapped in a ring, poked once too often.  We had multiple nurses stop by - is she in pain?  Nauseous?  Can we do anything for her?  Can we do anything for YOU?  (Booze didn't seem to be an option so I didn't ask)  No, she was fully medicated, she was just really, really annoyed with the adults in her life.  She screeched if I tried to put her down but then 30 seconds later would squirm out of my arms.  Except she was still loopy and could barely stand, though would bat away my hand if I tried to steady her.  So she would fall down onto her butt and then cry like she was the most neglected baby in the history of the world.  FUN. 

One of the first books I remember reading
by myself.  This is my original copy...
so it's REALLY old.
 When we got home the girl promptly took a three hour nap and I made Matt divulge the location of the jelly beans.  Though I'll admit my (new) standard-post-hospital glass of Bordeaux did NOT mesh well with the jelly beans. Maybe I should've gone with a white instead? 

She's awake now and alternating between whining, and throwing herself onto the cushions, laughing.  Love that child.  I made a big deal with the anesthesiologist about her neck not being cleared yet - I didn't mention that belly flopping forward onto cushions, beds, & mom is her new most favorite activity.  She especially likes to sneak up on me, causing no end of close calls as I barely catch her in time to avoid breaking her nose on the floor. Or my kneecap.  I'm kinda thinking her neck is probably FINE. 

Since I mentioned the anesthesiologist ...  My MIL came with me during her first eye surgery (too long of a story to explain why) and after the decade long wait for them to start, we were both tired, and, dare I say it? A mite grumpy?  And frazzled?  Then the anesthesiologist came through the door - with a spot light and rising choir music.  He was straight out of Central Casting - Clooney in scrubs redeux (I was a diehard ER fan...watched to the bitter end).  If he didn't pay for medical school by modeling, then he ran up $100k in loans unnecessarily.  But he was a YOUNG Clooney, ink barely dry on the diploma.  And so with my MIL standing right beside me, about to hand my baby over for elective surgery (elective, thus not necessary to maintain life, thus perhaps not worthy of the risk?  What am I doing risking her life just so she doesn't end up with a wall-eye?  Bad superficial mom!)...  So I'm about to hand my baby over to this stranger and am thinking, not necessarily in this order:
Please don't kill my child.
Maannn, you are HAWT  (epitome of maturity, I am)
You are WAY too young for me
MIL is standing RIGHT THERE, she can probably read your mind.
You are WAY too young to be a real doctor
Please don't kill my child.

[Yes, Matt's heard this story.  He also shared his jelly beans with me today, so must still like me despite my brief, parentally-supervised, wandering eye].

At least it was distracting.  This time the sleepy time doc had, if not an actual diagnosis, then at least some pronounced social tics.  And, um, while I'm sure he's a very nice man, a Clooney clone he was not.  We'll know in about three months whether or not this fix stays fixed.  Highly amusing was the doctor's answer on how often the second repair needs to be repaired - 10%.  *sigh* 

Totally unrelated & on the list of things you never thought you'd say:
To the boy, trying to avoid bedtime tonight by "helping":  STOP DOING THE DISHES!

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Tough Days

...when the sun is out, there's a slight breeze, and there are paths and power tools to peruse.  Tough to pick which pictures get posted.  Talk-less Tuesday doesn't have quite the je ne sais quoi as the otherwise popular Wordless Wednesdays, but I'm sure I'll find something heavy to pontificate about tomorrow.  In the meantime... this was our Saturday afternoon: 

Not quite so chipper at the end of the walk

Did I mention we live REALLY close to family? 
(freakishly close?)
They're finally conceding to the Inevitableness that is The Play Structure in the Suburbs.

Grand Finale...
No, not my e'er brilliant photography.
I feel like I should add a disclaimer - this is unplanned, unscripted, unstaged.
She just sized up the situation and decided Uncle G needed to move a little faster.

See Dahling?  You just have to inspiiiirrre your laborers.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Ladies Who Brunch

On Saturday I went to a brunch put on by the Albert Pujols foundation.  No kids, no spouses, just the moms.  The food was yummy - there was creme brulee (!), and crab cakes (!) -  there was an extravagant gift bag, Deidre Pujols herself was there, along with her super adorable daughter Bella...  and it was the most emotionally draining two hours I've had in a while.

I work full time so I never had the chance to join any playgroups.  We did a Buddy Walk one year, but missed the next - I don't remember why but I'm sure whatever it was seemed like a good reason.  Out local DS group has had a bunch of fun sounding fundraisers but other than kicking in $10 here and there on Reece's Rainbow we haven't been in the position to give much away the last couple years.  That, and since Matt went back to work, he's had weekend duty (soon to change!) so our social time is limited. 

Full of excuses, aren't I?  Why haven't we gotten more involved?  Money?  Time?  Denial?  Avoidance?  Laziness?  Mix of all of the above I'm afraid.  Though, yes, having an active social life with two kids, especially with one around 2 can be, um, challenging.  Timing a simple Saturday visit to the park around meals and naps can be a prize-worthy endeavor.  My first steps have really been here, online - even if I can count my non-family visitors here on one hand (ok 2 hands now - thanks!), my beat up laptop has provided those critical first connections, my first party invitations. 

Also, I might've mentioned I'm not really a people person.  Walking into that brunch on Saturday, even knowing no one else knew anyone either (except they did), even knowing what we had in common - ugh.  Social paralysis.  I generally think I'm a fabulous interesting person (ha!) - I function quite well at work, thank you, but walking into any social group of more than, say, three people sends the little reptilian part of my brainstem into flight or flight mode.  Or, maybe back into 7th grade mode.  Many of my first conversations have been me going, "mmmmpppphhhhhh".  That I have friends anyway is testament to their wisdom & patience (cutesy smiley face), not my social charms. 

[Say what you will about the internet & blogging, it's a comfy spot for us introverts]

So there was that part of it.  There were also videos - about our kids.  And their parents.  And their hopes and fears and their lives.  And prom night, because some of them "might not otherwise get to go".  At least I wasn't the only one crying.  Deidre Pujols told her story and still got choked up 13 years later.  Not exactly a breezy light hearted morning.  Inspiring, hopeful, embracing - but still, emotional.

What I thought was fascinating, though I don't have a fully formed opinion about it, was that the "Did you know" question was one of the first asked and longest discussed.  Everyone told their story (I told a super abbreviated version - high risk, 4th ultrasound, yes we knew.  I left off the part about Brennan).  I think only one other mom at my table knew in advance.  I can NOT think of a more loaded question - it's like meeting someone for the first time and within minutes asking what church they belong to, their position on abortion, and their views on disability.  Or, to put a much, much more inflammatory spin on it:  how they feel about euthanizing the disabled.  And if they don't come right out and tell you, you can certainly infer a lot from their answer.  Also implied, though I can only assume (hope?) not asked, is the immediate follow up question - had you known, what would you have done?

Since I don't fall into either camp - neither Surprised! nor devout Church-goer - I stayed on the sidelines of that conversation.  I guess I understand this is human nature - people reaching out, swapping stories, trying to find connections.  I will also freely admit that I might be a leeetttlllee bit more emotional this week (you think?), given its significance.  Maybe less introverted people don't stumble over sharing things like that.  Again, I don't really know how I feel about this - just making an observation. 

Also, to wrap up on a happier note - Albert & Deidre Pujols?  Good people.  Old fashioned, generous, kind, good people.  I'll save all the fervent baseball fan stuff for Matt (guess I'm giving up our location here, aren't I?), but how refreshing is it when people give that much of themselves, for the right reasons and not for the cameras?  In a fortuitous bit of timing, 60 Minutes did a spot on them last night - made me happy, so I'll share:  WATCH ME.   .....I'll share the link at least.  Can't figure out how to embed a video.
Edited the next morning (as usual):  It's also entirely possible I'm over thinking The Question.  Your thoughts?

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Notes from a weekend

My girl refuses to nap at daycare so on half the days I pick her up she falls asleep in the car on the way home.  I always feel a little guilty not waking her up for dinner but if I can get her unbuckled, inside, through the herd of welcoming beasts, changed, and she's still asleep, then - um, yeah - let the poor girl rest. 

Friday her head bobbed in the car but she stayed awake long enough to reach the dinner table - where she promptly put her head down on the table in the middle her food.  Bedtime!  Which left me & her brother to roam the travesty that is our back lawn (we have THREE dogs) in the setting sun and to plan a movie night.  Good times.  Getting changed he said, "I'm going to put on my Mario pajamas for special nights like movie nights but if they aren't clean then I'll just wear my Christmas pajamas 'cause Christmas pajamas are special too".  

His $9.99 Mario PJs from Target, bought after we were stranded in LA, are his prized possession of the moment.  Deprived child, much?  His comment also appears to have referenced the state of our laundry pile but I'm pretending I didn't catch that. 

I wish I had a voice recorder - how odd would it be to tape a mic to your kid?  I want to do a better job of remembering his funny little comments.  I suppose that's what this space is for. 

Right now he's playing Club Penguin next to me singing "Spring is here, spring IS hheeeerrreee", while we wait for his sister to finish napping.  Earlier he asked if plants need rocks (see above re:  the travesty that is our back yard).  I said no, they need dirt, water, & sun.  "And love?"  (which he is still asking, albeit sadly less often). Yes buddy, and love.  Adore that kid. 

Turns out I did have a few extra vacation shots after all.  These are the last ones - promise!

Friday, April 8, 2011

The cute dress, as promised.

Busy as a bee
Queen of the party, is me
Though not my birthday

Hungry!  Outside?  Sad.
If only I were honey
ALL the stinkin' time

Life would be so dull
Ha! What would mommy do, sit?
Sting'er in the rear!

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Decisions made under Emotional Duress

I'm back!  Thanks for all the love over the last couple days.  I was fine, really - a few stealthy hiccups, a couple tissues, but there was no wailing or rending of garments in public*.   One of the advantages of being obnoxiously busy at work. 

Although...  in a sign that I had actually probably been driven clinically insane by grief, on Tuesday my brother talked me into running a half marathon with him.  In two months.  [Black humor anyone?  Too dark?]  Since my last post was so very long, I won't try to explain quite how hopeless, logistically impossible, and BATSHIT CRAZY this is.  It would be epic, a tome - the unabridged Oxford English Dictionary of reasons this is Not A Promising Plan. 

But the 26.2 mile run is on my bucket list.  Running half that will either be a good start or enough to convince me my list needs revising.  I'm turning *cough* soon (read: Major Milestone Birthday).  And since I have little'uns to care for I won't be jumping out of an airplane anytime soon ever.  Bit of a midlife stereotype, yes, but cheaper than getting a convertible.  How bad could it be?  (mirthless laughter).  I'm posting the plan here only to keep myself honest.  Though if I never mention it again... well, be kind.

I have photos of the most-cutest dress ever on my gorgeous gal but cannot find my camera (nor my sunglasses. See above re:  midlife), so the last of the vacation photos are below. 

      *Cate posted a link to this article by Emily Rapp a few days ago.  The author described exactly what I was trying to - using a lot less space.  She also wrote this:  "[It] felt straight out of a Victorian novel:  I was hysterical, inconsolable, stricken.  I had the urge to run down the street in pajamas (for lack of a period nightgown) tearing at my hair and wailing."   Which I wish I'd written. 
Miss CA's Bougainvillea

The Long Road.
That which does not grow in Missouri

The World's Smallest Puddle

Sunday, April 3, 2011

April 6th

This week will be the first time I’ve worked on an April 4th, 5th, or 6th in seven years.  I couldn’t justify staying home after the girl’s RSV hospital stay, her eye surgery next week, and our recent extended vacation.  Plus, I have a training class the first week of May, and my sister’s wedding later that month.  I’d like to stay employed, though I can’t say I’ll be super productive the next couple days.

April 4, 2004 was the last time I felt my son Brennan kicking.
On April 5th we discovered we'd lost him.
He was delivered in the early morning hours of April 6th.

I wrote a version of this a while back on Band Back Together, never intending to share it with a soul (not with anyone I knew at least).  Our story usually makes people squirmy - it's not really cocktail party conversation, but it is MY story so I will succumb to the temptation of wet concrete, or a penknife and tree trunk and post it here, now that I have my very own (microscopic) corner of the internet.  I strongly suggest the family NOT read it.  Lots of swearing, amongst other reasons.  General blogging rules also suggest this is way too long for one post.  Too bad.  No one else has to read it either.  Here’s a cute picture of a dog instead as a thanks for stopping by, if you want mosey along.  Story is after the jump.

Travelers (both kinds)

On our first unsuccessful break for home we were stripped of our luggage and arrived at Gigi's with nary a set of PJs.  Yet one more reason to love Target.  Of course I bought the kids summerish clothes, not thinking it would be cold in LA of all places, so they're looking a little Gyspy-like here. 

Too busy to stop & smile for mom.
Stripes & plaid, winter coat & shorts - A Study In Contradictions
What I wouldn't do to be able to take an action shot!