Just another mom blog…

For this child, I have prayed. (Samuel 1:27)

Archive for the month “June, 2011”

A limpy Gimp

Is Gimp a bad word? I hope it isn’t. If it is, and someone is offended, then please accept my apologies and let me know so I can change it.  It was the first word to come to mind to describe my current situation. Yesterday, while working outside, I tried to step over the gate at the bottom of the stairs and came down hard at an odd angle on a 2″ stone.  It hurt like heck and I hit the ground and grabbed my foot. Turns out that I would be doing a lot of this particular maneuver over the next 24 hours but more on that later.

The pain subsided with just some general soreness as I went about my day. That evening, I noticed that it looked a little swollen but I could still walk with a little pain.  I got started painting downstairs again. I had to go in to my newly organized garage where I ended up stepping on a nail on the same tortured foot.  Hit the ground manuever #2 was born.  The nail broke my skin but thankfully that’s all.

Fast-forward to the next morning.  I should have known that it would be a bad day when I woke up and got out of bed. Like most folks, I innocently assumed that I had the usual two feet to walk on and I didn’t think twice about putting my full weight onto both. [Insert hit the ground manuever #3].

While on the floor holding the offended foot, I looked it over and couldn’t really see any major swelling or grossness and so I didn’t understand why it was hurting me. I tried applying pressure with my hands and it did NOT feel good. I decided to accept my predicament.  Then panic set in.

HOW, I asked myself, was I going to tend to a toddler all day? Clean the house? Get the much-needed groceries? Catch up on laundry??? Folks, you just have to understand that general lameness does NOT go well in my particular line of work.  Toddlers do not understand that they need to get whatever they need while you are up on an hurting foot to fix them a drink.  Indeed, they will happily wait until you hobble your lame self back onto the couch before promptly demanding something to eat. Repeatedly.

Then came lunch. Oh the joys of lunch. By this time my repeated trips to tend to the toddler left me hurting way more than a foot should hurt.  This is when Nathan decided to kick the high chair tray.  The tray fell onto my good foot and I got to hit the floor in pain for the fourth time.

By this point, I was ready to scream at no one in particular to STOP the vendetta against my feet! Or cry. I would have settled for crying in the miserable state that I found myself in. Did I mention that I had a UTI? Any of you girls ever have one? I get a few whopper UTIs a year and do not particularly like the bladder/kidney pain, dry heaving, nausea, lack of energy, and so forth. My body was just not a very nice place to be, yesterday especially.

So I hobbled back onto two offended and bruised feet and hauled the 30 pound boy to get ready to go to the doctor.  I rigged a support-conraption using a roll of socks tucked into a slipper sock to allow me to keep pressure off of the worst parts.  I got him dressed and while I opened the car door he tried to run away. I had no choice but to hobble-chase him down and by this point my foot was screaming in pain at me. I carried on with my Supermom self and got him safely strapped into his seat. Off we went.

The doc came in and Nathan decided he didn’t really like him.  He made this evident by telling him repeatedly to go ‘bye-bye.” I tried to play it off as to not make the dr feel bad. I told him, “Oh, he gets his ‘hi’ and ‘bye-bye’s mixed up sometimes.”  Which would have worked great except for that the nurse came in and he got his hi and bye perfectly. Oops. I guess he liked the nurse.

They couldn’t get an interpreter that soon so I was unable to understand much.  He said something about inflamed tendons and to take a steroid.  The conversation was a bit like playing charades:

Doc: ?????? inflamed tendons???????? foot???????don’t think broken.

[Nathan: bye-bye doctor! Doctor smiles at Nathan]

Me: Oh thank goodness! I can’t afford a broken foot in my line of work.

[Awkward silence]

Me: um…so what do I do? For my foot I mean?

Doc: ???????steroid???????(something)???????

[Nathan: bye-bye! Doctor bye-bye!]

Me: A shot? A shot of steroid in my foot?

Doc: No?????spill????

Baffled Me: No shot because it got spilled?

Annoyed Doc: Pill…..I will call it in ???????????????????

Me: OH! Ok. I understand now. I have to take a steriod pill to help the inflammation for my foot.

[Doc nods, ignores Nathan’s next few round of bye-byes]

I told him thank you and was glad to leave.  Next, since I was in the building and knew that I needed to stay off of my foot, I headed down to the Reproductive Endocrinologist’s office to get my blood work done.  My RE, the fabulous Dr. D, wants to check my blood for common causes of repeated early miscarriages. I just started the process of bleeding from this last (3rd) pregnancy.

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Here is some math for you: I have been pregnant constantly for the last 5.5 months with the exception of 3, 2-week intervals between the pregnancies (6 weeks total of not being pregnant in almost 6 months of time).  Of these 6 weeks not being pregnant, I’ve spent 5 weeks total cramping and bleeding to lose the pregnancies naturally and going through all sorts of hormonal mayhem.  I needed a break. Needless to say, I’ve been (mostly) a trooper with a few mood-swing hiccups which my hubby has been largely understanding about. So, this month I asked my RE for some birth control (for the love of everything good) and I am to start on them soon.  At least we know now that all of my plumbing works!

I will have to say that I am still finding this whole ‘being fertile’ thing weird after a whole marriage of infertility.  Four plus years without birth control of any sort, and only one baby (via IVF) to show for it.  Then I have 3 back-to-back pregnancies.  It’s weird.

Speaking of fertility, do you know about the record for the most children born to one woman? Feodor Vassilyev (1707-1782). a peasant from Russia gave birth to sixteen pairs of twins, seven sets of triplets, and four sets of quadruplets.  That’s 69 kids! Yikes. Even though these babies were born in pre-NICU days, an amazing 67 of them survived infancy.

Ok…so I got WAY off topic. Where was I? Oh right, going in for blood work.  I waited around and they were able to squeeze me in so I wouldn’t have to make a second trip, toddler in tow, on a hurt foot.  I went back for my ‘teensy little’ blood work job.  I sat down in the chair and used the diaper bag and a book to both block Nathan’s view and keep him occupied.  I read to him about dinosaurs while she pulled out a few vials to fill.  I sighed with relief that there were just a few. Then she turned around and pulled out another handful of vials, some of them huge, and proceeded to line them up in a very long row. Stinking vampires, those folks are. Sheesh.

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Anyhow, I left with my very sore arm and we headed to the elevators, where Fate decided to remind me to count my blessings. In the elevator stood a woman and her daughter.  The daughter looked to be around age 8 and she was very proud to be helping her smiling mommy out.  The woman looked around 32 years old. She stood on two plastic legs.  The plastic legs (what’s the term?) nestled two leg stumps cut off just below her knees.  She smiled and laughed with her daughter.  The amazing thing is that in addition to not having legs, her arms were both amputated, one above the elbow and the other just below her elbow.  Despite this, she made casual conversation with me and Nathan.  I wished I would have asked her for her contact info as she seemed like an amazing woman.

On the way home, I thanked the Good Lord for letting me meet this woman without arms and legs.  I thanked God, with tears in my eyes, for having two arms. I thanked him for letting me have two perfect legs and feet for me to injure ever now and then.  Then, I asked Him to please never let me forget this amazing woman.  Let someone tell her how inspirational she is too us all, and to keep her light shining bright in this world.

 

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Making progress!

I’ve been really busy lately trying to check off my insane to-do list.  This weekend I weeded and pruned enough to fill the back of a pick-up truck.  I’m working on putting down weed block and new mulch in all of my ornamental garden beds.  The weather has been perfect for it. Very little humidity and under 80 degrees.  Perfect!

I’m also painting the entire downstairs and all the trim in the house.  The previous owners did not leave any information about what paint color they used on the trim, or so I thought. Then while cleaning out the garage I found a can without a label on it and inside was very old paint.  I thinned it with mineral spirits, applied it to a small section of trim, and it matched! There was no way to tell the brand/color/shine so I just painted some white paper and brought it into the paint store. They were able to use a computer to match the paint. I made sure to write the exact paint color/number/brand and the items painted these colors onto the inside of our built-in storage unit for future reference. No more mystery colors for us or future owners. Now I have a whole gallon of matching trim paint!

I also had a gallon of paint called French Grey that I am painting downstairs. I wanted to paint our bedroom and bathroom that color, but with all the light in those rooms, it just was too bright and cool.  It wasn’t the soothing, unstimulating blue color that I was going for.  So I used a warmer blue color and mixed several variations of the color.  I painted several walls to see how the light would affect it and slept with it for a few days. I finally settled on one of my colors, and then painted it on to white paper and had the color matched.  It is a really pretty sage-blue grey color like this:

I’ll post before-after pictures when I’m done.

As for the texture of the faux finish in the bedroom/bathroom, I found that the texture on the walls was not really visible under the paint.  I did however need to wipe down the walls because the paint gathered lint on it.  The few specks of faux paint that needed to be removed I can easily sand off.  HUGE relief there. I thought I was going to have to sand the entire two rooms.

I am thinking about making my own shower curtain again, simply because for the life of me I cannot find the right one.  I’ve considered sewing ruffles along the bottom of a drop cloth and monogram it with a huge letter “H” for decoration. Something like this:

I am now thinking that it won’t be the sophisticated look I prefer, nor does it offer much color to the room. Then I found this awesome table cloth and I am thinking that I could maybe try to use a table cloth as the material.  I did find some awesome material online on ebay but it is so expensive! Here are the ones I really liked:

Anyhow…I’ve got to go and get busy again. So much to do!

A note to all at-home moms out there:

I am not a southern Belle. Yes, I like my tea sweet and I certainly mind my elders and manners. I like crawfish and boudin but the likeness ends there. I am a liberal in just about every other aspect in my life.

I like gays.  Yes, I said I still like people even if they have sex with the same sex. The reason why is because I honestly do not give a rat’s butt who they have sex with behind closed doors and I believe their everlasting souls are theirs and theirs alone to grapple with.  I am not an expert in souls or religious conversions and unless you graduated from theology school and have an IQ above 170 then I highly suggest you stop acting like it.  It is no concern of mine. I’d rather be besties with a loving, interesting gay couple than an old, church deacon with a wandering eye and who largely ignores his kids. I like good people. I like kind, loving, selfless people who care about others and animals. I love folks who make it their mission to try to make the world a little bit better each day. That’s what I care about.

I do not care if a man and his wife are of different races.  I abhor people who cannot get the Stick of Ignorance out of their butts and support a loving, married couple when they see one.  I can’t stand it even more if a person judges a child for being of a mix race. Shame on them if they do. I once asked a man of the Deep South if he would rather his daughter marry a rich white man who beats her and her kids, or marry a black man, and do you know what he said? He’d go for the white son in law any day, even if he beats his daughter! People like this break my heart. I almost feel badly for them, almost.

The point is that the following post is not about being an old-fashioned Southern housewife. It is about shaping up and doing what you are supposed to be doing in the first place, simply because it is good for your family.

I love stay-at-home moms. I also love stay-at-home dads. The bottom line is that I love seeing a family working to do what is best for their children, and research certainly shows that kids with an at-home parent do better than those who are dropped off at daycare at 6 weeks old and only see their parents for two hours an evening and on weekends.  I also need to clarify that the parent at home needs to be engaged with their kids. I am going to use this moment to shout out to all of the at-home parents out there to wake the hell up and start doing their jobs. I’m not going to sugar coat this, so get ready:

Your kids need to get more eye contact than your computer screens and more physical contact than your remotes. Engaging and being attentive to the kids is the key. If you can’t do this, then drop them off at daycare and let someone else raise your child because you are too selfish to do what you are supposed to be doing in the first place.  (For working dads, this rule applies to you as well, especially on the weekends.)

Speaking of, I am a big fan of housewives/hubbies taking care of the house and cooking for their families.  If you have a boob, you should be giving it all you have to nurse your infant. I have seen more parents concerned about how their child is dressed than the nutrition that they are putting into their tiny, growing bodies.  Whats more important? Their clothes or their health?

Getting on the housewives topic, and I am talking about moms because unfortunately at-home moms are all I ever see.  Moms need to get off of their spoiled, lazy butts and start taking care of their kids and houses better.  I’ve seen at-home moms wait on their own working moms to clean their houses for them because they are too lazy and spoiled to do it themselves.  This is utterly ridiculous and inexcusable. If you have a medical reason and give it your best shot, then I’m not talking to you.  If you do a decent job keeping up with the bathrooms, dishes, clothes, and generally cleanliness then I’m also not talking to you.  I’m talking to the lazy ones who just do not care or think they are above this sort of thing.  I seriously do not understand why they think it is ok for their kids to grow up in filth and learn to be even lazier than them or become neat freaks because they are so embarrassed at how their parents chose to live. It is sad.

Speaking of, Moms, get off of your butts and cook for your family! Stop shoving junk down their throats and make them healthy snacks and meals.  They are growing and need this. There are so many ways to learn cooking skills from basic to more advanced available, so its not excuse to say you just ‘cannot cook.’  I don’t care if you grew up on fast-food and never spent a moment cooking before the kids. Unless you are an idiot, then you should be able to look up videos on the internet or enroll in a class to learn how to make some basic meals for them. You can set timers and write down whatever you need in order to not burn stuff.  You can ask other moms for tried and true recipes. There are tons of books filled with recipes with 5 ingredients or less, books with one-dish meals where you just throw everything in and bake. Easy peasy.

I’ve seen moms bragging (bragging!) about how they never cook. It is as if they think this is fashionable. Girls, it needs to be said that being so incompetent and/or self-centered as a person that you cannot cook is NOT fashionable.

Anyone can slap a few frozen chicken breast wrapped in foil with Italian dressing into the oven for 45 minutes.  Anyone can throw some fresh, sliced veggies in a punctured ziplock with some water into the microwave for a few minutes to steam them.  Anyone can open up a bag of lettuce, throw on some store-bought toppings and serve this all to their kids and husband.  Total prep time takes all of 10 minutes, which is MUCH faster than packing up everyone and going to the drive-thru. I don’t care if your toddler/infant is demanding. Put the infant in a bouncer or high chair and let him watch you cook while you talk to him. Get your toddler up on a chair to watch you cook and give him a simple ‘job’ to do. Even a young toddler can help you stir the tea or put veggies into the bowl. Get older kids involved. Make this part of your daily routine and you and might just end up liking it, I promise your family will. Who cares if they make a mess? They’ll love the experience, and you, for doing this for them.

If you cannot do this, then you are lazy. So own up to it and sit yourself in the Hall of Shame. But just stop lying to everyone about how you can’t/won’t cook, because there is no excuse. No one on earth believes that you really ‘do not have time.’ By the way, if you are not pregnant or incapacitated for some reason, then do not even dare to ask your hard-working husband to stop at the store or pick up food. This is YOUR job, not his.

Harsh, I know, but someone has got to tell these moms to wake the hell up and start doing a better job with their families. The future depends on you.

For goodness stakes, please stop nagging your husbands! YES, staying at home raising kids and taking care of a house is exhausting. YES, the hubby really shouldn’t forget to take out the trash.  YES, he should find the time to fix the fence. But you know what? In the grand scheme of things, SO CAN YOU! So stop nagging. Sit down like the loving couple you really should be and discuss these things together. Besides, be honest with yourself, do you really want to fight rush hour traffic every day and go to work? Then come home to try and handle kids who you don’t even know and still have to feed them and clean? Seriously? I think not.

Moms also need to remember that they need to stop treating their husbands like their best girlfriend.  Your husband does not need to come home to you telling him all about your horrible period cramps and how that witch of a woman was so rude to you at the store.  He doesn’t care and he doesn’t need to know this. He is a MAN. Pick up the phone and call a girlfriend.  If you do not have a girlfriend then hit the community of at-home mom groups and find yourself one.

Moms also need to stop asking their husbands for a gold star every time you actually do the jobs that you are supposed to be doing in the first place.  Just let the man come home and enjoy the fruits of your efforts. You certainly enjoy his. Stop acting like you are entitled to rewards for doing the ‘hardest job in the world’, but especially do not act entitled if you don’t do half the jobs that you are supposed to be doing. Your husband doesn’t owe you anything just because you chose to stay at home raising your own cotton-picking kids. Your reward is seeing your child grow up from little humans into unique young adults. Your reward is to see their first steps. Your reward is having little ones who worship the ground your walk on and your pride in knowing that you are the reason for all of the good things in their lives, taking them to the parks in the summertime, and hear their laughter throughout the day. THAT, ladies, is your reward.

Also, when he comes home, unless you have a very good reason (illness, pregnancy, no sleep, newborns), then you need to get yourself into the shower, put on some decent looking clothes of the non-pajama/exercise kind, and look decent for him.  Just because you are at home all day does not mean that you can go around looking like a slob.

Men don’t like slobs. Men who are working hard and stressing the heck out over how to support you and your kids do not like slobs, nags, whiners, or spoiled brats who won’t cook or clean. Keep this in mind.

Bottom line? Your family deserves a clean house and good nutritious meals. YOU also deserve it to take good care of yourself. Don’t let yourself go just because you are a mom.  Don’t completely neglect your social life, appearance, and personal time away from it all just because you have this particular job.  Your family needs a happy mom, your husband needs a happy wife.  So every now and then get a sitter and go on a double date or just get out for a little while.  You may think that with everything I said above (the truth!) that the husband and kids are the most important. The fact is that YOU are the most important person in the family. Deep down inside your husband knows this and so does the rest of society.  You are the one who keeps the house going and the family together.  You are the one who is giving your kids the best chance at growing up to be loving, well-rounded individuals. In turn, your very efforts now will help secure a similar lifestyle for your grandchildren. You made the best possible choice for your little ones and they love you for this.

So Ladies, take care of yourself too.  It doesn’t take a lot of money or even leaving the house. Fix yourself a glass of wine after the kids are in bed. Fix yourself a nice bubble bath.  Or simply go to bed a little early with a good book and let your mind enter the world of whatever you are reading about. You can do this. Anyone can.  You can do a better job taking care of the house and your families. There is no excuse not to.  And when you do, you will feel proud of yourself.  So Girls, please, I beg you, make some changes for your family and yourself.  Your family will be happier, healthier, and stronger for it, and there is nothing better than this. You can do this, I promise, so get busy ladies! 🙂

Heavenly Nights

Yesterday was absolutely perfect. I do not mean that life was perfect, not by a long shot. There were dishes in the sink, a huge basket of clothes to fold, and toys all over the living room. I had spent the morning trying to rehydrate so that I at least could walk around without feeling like I was going to pass out. But the evening was perfect, and let me tell you why…

The things that matter most in my life, my son and husband, and I were all together as a family.  We were sitting together in the living room after eating dinner.  My husband was in a really good mood, a weekday rarity:

Nathan was thriving in his father’s positive energy and attention, as was I:

And those two played, oh how they played! Their smiles and laughter filled my heart up until it was overflowing with love for these two:

My husband smiled as my little boy and I snuggled and giggled. I stole a million kissies from Nathan, and in return Nathan stole my heart:

I pretended to eat Nathan’s foot, saying how sweet his little foot is, and he laughed until his little belly hurt and then we laughed some more:


Moments like these remind me that happiness comes from within. That we can feel happy and make the most of our time together even on weekdays and when the house isn’t clean.  Because the important things in life, my son and husband and I being together, is what life is really all about. Nothing more, nothing less. Just us.

I want my heaven to be just like this. I know that when I see the sun set for the last time on my life way down the road, that I will recall this moment in perfect clarity.  My husband’s radiant smile, my son’s sweet kissies and laughter, the absolute bliss and love that I felt for my family.

Meeting Dr. Zahi Hawass

Zahi with Obama

Zahi Wih Beyonce

Zahi With Laura Bush

Zahi with Bill Clinton

Zahi with me! 🙂

Working in the yard…

Just wanted to show you guys what I’ve been doing in the yard. I planted a few planters with several plants each:

 

I’m still waiting on my row of tiger lilies to bloom, and I have not yet taken a picture of the new garden I just planted yet. The tiger lilies (pictured below) are blooming many weeks later than usual, while my tomato plants grew earlier than usual. I guess they are also affected by the weather phenomenon.

I also added lots of ornamental grasses to my front landscaping and monkey grass and stone border to my little corner garden plot by the driveway. The grasses and hostas should completely fill out the stonescaping and look very pretty soon. I will be sure to update pictures of more once I am finished with everything and things grow and bloom.

 

Round 3 :-/

Nausea, meat aversions, fatigue, heat intolerance, banana popsicle cravings, certain health issues are all very typical symptoms of being 3 weeks along.  Sighs. Guess I should get ready loss #3. Fun times. Cant’ I get a break? Just asking. A tiny break. Any break really. Sighs.

My doctor wants to do some autoimmune tests as soon as I lose this pregnancy. Maybe next time around there will be a pill or something that I can take to help me sustain the pregnancy to term, which would be awesome.  I would totally love another little one. I just need to get this body of mine to stop acting like a fool and do what it is supposed to do. I am also getting tested for a condition called POTS (Postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome)I’ve already tested positive for this, but I still need a cardiologist to make it official.  I’ve already been told that I have dysautonomia which led to all of my extensive belly surgeries. So…hopefully things will get sorted out and I’ll be able to live a decent life from here on out. I optimistic that things will be fine and dandy, and that I just need to keep up the ole’ chin and stay positive. 🙂

Learning Colors

Nathan and I have been working on learning colors. I decided to focus on one color per day, and today is our third color-day.  I started by using toy balls and any flashcards with a ball on it.  He has a big orange ball, a little green one, and a picture of a blue ball.  Today we reviewed our previous colors, using the big orange ball and the green one.  Then I added the blue ball to his list.

So now he is walking around talking about his three new colors, green, big, and blue balls.

We have a little bit of work to do. Just a tiny bit.

To be continued…

Our New Cat. Kinda.

There’s a sweet older kitten living outside across the street.  His owners are never home and pretty much just throw food out for him. This is not the kind of cat who is a loner. So I named him Sparky, cause he has a lot of spark, this guy does.

He’s sociable. Very sociable. He is so sociable, in fact, that he will mosey on over into our yard every single time I go outside, which is around 3-4 times a day since I am working on gardening.  I really don’t mind though because he is so sweet and a hoot to watch since he has kitty-ADHD and can’t sit still or focus for more than 2.6 seconds on any given thing. Well, that’s not true, he actually focuses very well on our tree when he has a 28 pound toddler squealing and running after him.

He will also run and hide from the 28-pound squealing toddler in my ornamental grasses. He usually looks at me for mercy upon his kiddy soul while Nathan points him out to me (loudly).

Kings Island Trip

This past week Nathan and I met a friend and her little guy at a Kings Island, which is a combination of a nice amusement park and a separate, but connected, water park called Boomerang Bay. We actually bought season passes to the place, and I’m so very excited for this summer.  It is about an hour away, however, I really don’t mind the drive and it gives Nathan a chance to nap on the way there and back.

We arrived and went straight to boomerang bay. I didn’t bring my camera because it was my first time there and I wasn’t sure what to expect, but I will be sure to take/post pictures some other time. I did find some from the online website. Anyhow, we quickly found a super-cute kiddie section which includes a very gradually sloping, non-slip bay and little waterfall props.

At one point, in between his attempts to steal various wagons along the poolside, he actually did go into the bay to play with the gysers in the picture above. The water was so cold though so he wasn’t really into it. He did however, make it his personal mission to let every single adult know that the water is cold. He did this by walking up to them, tapping their legs, and when they looked down he would say, “WAH-door, (insert signs for RIGHT THERE, pointing at water) it COOOOLLLD!” They, of course, smiled and said thank you and he said, “Thank you” right back to them. (Pats self on back).

We didn’t get to try the other rides/attractions at boomerang bay because the water was so cold.

Instead, we decided to head on over to Kings Island, which is kind-of like Six flags. The weather was warm but cloudy so it was perfect for us. We went on several rides. One that he liked is called the Whirly Bird and features independent helicopter cars which mom and child ride on a suspended track with a nice view of the park. He really likes it.

Something that we both really enjoyed was riding their train.  It is adult-sized and goes along a scenic track and shuttles folks in between the two parks.  It passes through a little mock town, through the woods, under roller coasters, and by a little lake and river. You can ride it as a shuttle as I mentioned or just ride it as a round trip.  While waiting for the ride, Nathan befriended a very gregarious little 5-year old boy and his shy older 9-year old sister. They kept him entertained during the 10 minute wait and I was tickled pink.  I mean, how often does a tired, hungry toddler manage to sit still on a bench for 10 whole minutes? I was so delighted at this feat that I almost did my Happy Dance right then and there.

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